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Is Perseverance of the Saints the same as Eternal Security January 29, 2006

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.

Or are some of us feeling a little eternally insecure?

Having worked at teen camps and been an “altar worker” for much of my life if have quite often encountered a question like this:

My church teaches “once saved, always saved.” no matter what you do. And I’m wondering about that. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to me and I think I’m a little confused about whether or not I’m really saved.

Here is how I have usually answered it.

First, I acknowledge that it is a tough and sometimes confusing subject. And it is a tough question! I strongly believe the Bible teaches a “conditional eternal security”. Now don’t go get the firewood and kindling and prepare to offer me at the stake! I believe that as long as we continue to confess our sins, take up his cross daily and follow him, submit our will to His, remember to flee and not flirt with temptation and desire to obey Jesus’ teachings, we are eternally secure (See Romans 8, especially the last half).

Pay particular attention to Romans 8:35. It speaks about God’s love. And the fact that nothing can separate us from it. Even before we were saved, God in His Love pursued us. So, based upon God’s character, there is no reason to expect that love toward us to ever change.

Here’s the important point–whether you’re a Baptist or Methodist or a Nazarene like me: Our salvation is based on our relationship with God through Christ. And, we may “fall short of the glory of God.” But, “if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

I have to admit that in my younger days there were times when I wasn’t sure of my relationship with God. For instance, one day I came home to an empty, silent house. The lights were on, but no sign of life. Then it hit me like a ton of Bibles. It could only mean one thing: Christ had returned “like a thief in the night” and snatched up Mom, Dad, and my brother Dave.

For years, I had lived under apocalyptic terror. I would be living a “good Christian life,” but in a moment of weakness, I would sin, or worse yet, I would somehow sin without even knowing it. And, then–at that very instant, even before I could ask forgiveness–Christ would return for His children. Now, I was left behind, all alone to face the battle of Armageddon and then the fires of hell!

Suddenly, my conscience recalled the reason for my doom. Just an hour before, my big brother had done something that ticked me off that big brothers often do, and in the emotion of the moment, I had called him a name. Not just any name, but the four-letter name that my pastor warned would guarantee a one-way ticket to the devil’s front porch. Yes, I had called my brother a F-O-O-L! And according to my pastor’s interpretation of Matthew 5:2, there was nothing left to do but to turn on the TV and wait for the “beeeeeeeeeeeeep” of the Emergency Broadcast System and the announcements that busses no longer had drivers, planes had no pilots and that half of the people on the planet had disappeared.

But then to my rapturous relief, my family (and yes, even my brother) returned from visiting the neighbors. While comforted that I had one more chance, I still felt a little eternal insecurity when it came to salvation. And, apparently I’m not alone.

A youth-pastor once asked his teens, “How many of you are sure that you are a Christian?” These were teens whose parents were professors at an evangelical college and administrators at a denominational headquarters. With heads bowed and eyes closed, very few of the forty young people raised his or her hand! The majority professed to be Christians, but not very many were sure that Christ had forgiven their sins and had reserved a place for them in His eternal neighborhood – Heaven!

I’m afraid that in my tradition’s zeal to avoid the error of “once saved-always saved,” I have encountered something else; a large number of teens and adults who are “eternally in-secure.”

Now hold on. Before you think someone needs to revoke my membership, let me assure you that I do not believe that once someone is forgiven of their sins and believes in Christ that eternal life is unconditionally guaranteed.

Jesus himself makes it very clear that those who once knew him can turn away into eternal punishment: “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned” (John 15:5-6).

Both the Old and New Testaments agree:

If a righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits sin, he will die for it; because of the sin he has committed he will die (Ezekiel 18:26).

For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a terrifying expectation of judgment and THE FURY OF A FIRE WHICH WILL CONSUME THE ADVERSARIES. Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on {the testimony of} two or three witnesses. How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace? (Hebrews 10:26-29 NASB, emphasis in the NASB)

But Scripture also assures us that we can know that we are saved and be eternally secure. The old-timers called it a “know so” religion when I was growing up. They said, and I believe that we can know in our hearts that we are Children of God. All you have to do is look at a few passages such as:

The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: (Romans 8:16)

Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. (I John 3:2)

But we in the church may have created some eternal insecurity in at least two ways:

Insecurity comes from a limited view of Scripture

Some teachers, pastors and evangelists have only stressed the first set of verses. These leaders fear that those under their care will reject Christ. And that is a legitimate concern. But Christian leaders sometimes spend too much time preaching warnings of “falling away” rather than a message of Holiness. In fact I heard a message today in church like I haven’t heard in quite a while. The pastor preached on creating moral margin in our lives and in living our lives as far from what the world calls the norm as possible.

The fact is, Christians do not “fall” as if Salvation was a slippery rock in a flowing river. Salvation is not like my car keys or my reading glasses that I lose from time to time. Notice that 2 Timothy 2:12 reads in part,

. . . if we endure, we will also reign with him. If we disown him, he will also disown us.”

We lose our relationship with Christ, and thus our eternal home with Him, by willfully, deliberately rejecting Him and His will. We must balance our warnings with equal parts of assurance.

Paul writes in Romans 8:38-39:

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

And in II Thessalonians 3:3:

But the Lord is faithful; he will make you strong and guard you from the evil one.

In Second Timothy 1:12 it says it this way:

And that is why I am suffering here in prison. But I am not ashamed of it, for I know the one in whom I trust, and I am sure that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until the day of his return.

Christian can be sure of this because “the Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children” (Romans 8:16) as was stated earlier. Hebrews reinforces this truth:

And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God’s people, let us go right into the presence of God, with true hearts fully trusting him. For our evil consciences have been sprinkled with Christ’s blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water. (Hebrews 10:21-22 NLT)

So God has given us both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can take new courage, for we can hold on to his promise with confidence. This confidence is like a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain of heaven into God’s inner sanctuary. Jesus has already gone in there for us. He has become our eternal High Priest in the line of Melchizedek. (Hebrews 6: 18-19 NLT)

John writes:

These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life. (1 John 5:13 NASB)

Finally, Paul has an assurance for Believers:

Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform [it] until the day of Jesus Christ: (Philippians 1:6 KJV)

Insecurity comes from a limited view of Christianity

Those who believe a bump of our heads on an altar at the close of the final service at youth camp or a quick dunk in a baptismal guarantees heaven — no matter how they live after they dry off — need to be warned that God demands Holiness. The preaching of a Holiness doctrine that stresses personal Holiness in all that we are and do is essential.

However, there are some out there who have preached personal tastes rather than Scriptural standards. These extra-biblical teachings often create eternal insecurity in those who attempt — and inevitably fail — to live up to these human standards.

A “conditional security” comes from Scripture in its full context

I believe that when taken in the full context, the Bible does not teach the idea of an unconditional eternal security. I believe that it teaches the perseverance of the saints. I know, some are already riled up and want to hit me over the head with their 27 pound Billy Graham preaching Bibles and tell me about God’s Grace, and the fact that my Salvation is based upon Faith alone! (Thank you martin Luther!) But in actuality the Christian life (not the Salvation experience) is just that it is a life-long commitment to Jesus Christ and His Righteousness. It is not just a quick trip to the altar and then back to the same life that we were living without Christ.

However, do not be afraid. We do not need to live with doubts about our relationship with Christ. Jesus himself prayed for the perseverance of the saints. Remember Jesus’ prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane the night that he was betrayed:

I do not ask You to take them out of the world, but to keep them from the evil {one.} They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth. As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. For their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they themselves also may be sanctified in truth. I do not ask on behalf of these alone, but for those also who believe in Me through their word; that they may all be one; even as You, Father, {are} in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me. The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me. Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundation of the world. (John 17: 15-24 NASB)

So what does this mean to me?

Once again I want to take this back to the question of what does it mean to me in the context of my daily walk with the Lord? How does it relate to the idea of Holiness of Heart and Life?

I think it means that my salvation is an active condition whereby I willingly walk hand in hand with my Heavenly Father. We walk hand in hand and he works on my life by daily transforming me into His image and according to His Will. I willingly abide in Him. And He abides in me. What else could I ask for?

I thank God that I no longer fear coming home to an empty house. I can come boldly before the Throne of Grace and approach God Almighty without fear. He is my Father and I am His Child. And, unlike those teenagers that I mentioned, I pray that you can raise your hand today and say “I’m sure that I am a Christian.” And I am becoming more and more like Him every day. My thoughts and actions are more Christ-like today than yesterday.

WOW! What a Response to William Tell! January 23, 2006

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.

Thank you for all of your great and insightful posts on the William Tell piece.

At the time of this writing there have been 32 comments posted on the “Sin” post. I am overwhelmed by the response and the depth of your comments. I am still so new to this and it amazes me at the mix of folks who posted comments. Men, women, pastors, laymen, young-ish, and the not so young-ish.

I am very much encouraged by the fact that so many folks are interested in Spiritual matters. Perhaps our nation, and other nations, are closer to a real revival than it seems from watching the media.

I am working on my next post. I think it will be on “Choices”. May of you referenced Free Will and Sovereignty in your comments. So that seems like fertile ground.

Thank you again to those of you who commented and especially to those who have made this blog a part of your circle of influence. I plan to add a few more of your links to my blog as time permits.


WOW! What a Response to William Tell! January 23, 2006

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.

Thank you for all of your great and insightful posts on the William Tell piece.

At the time of this writing there have been 32 comments posted on the “Sin” post. I am overwhelmed by the response and the depth of your comments. I am still so new to this and it amazes me at the mix of folks who posted comments. Men, women, pastors, laymen, young-ish, and the not so young-ish.

I am very much encouraged by the fact that so many folks are interested in Spiritual matters. Perhaps our nation, and other nations, are closer to a real revival than it seems from watching the media.

I am working on my next post. I think it will be on “Choices”. May of you referenced Free Will and Sovereignty in your comments. So that seems like fertile ground.

Thank you again to those of you who commented and especially to those who have made this blog a part of your circle of influence. I plan to add a few more of your links to my blog as time permits.


William Tell & Missing the Mark January 15, 2006

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.
OK, it is very early in my blogging career. And it already looks like I have lost my mind. And maybe I have a time or two. But stick with me for the next few paragraphs because I want to use a well known character in literature to help me take a position on “sin.”

First let me say, I am grateful to Joshua Woods, a young man at Mount Vernon Nazarene University who is studying for the ministry and for a career as a Chaplain in the U.S. Military. Thank you Joshua in advance of your service to the country and to the Kingdom of God by standing in the gap for me and the rest of the world that is blessed with freedom that has been bought with a price. (Hey, that sounds like a good idea for a future post! I’ll have to write that idea down.)

Joshua and I were having a brief instant messaging exchange the other night. I was expressing to him the difficulty it is to have a theological discussion with some folks when you do not share the same set of definitions. Depending on your starting point, you will undoubtedly end up in a different ending point. So, here are a few questions to spur our thought process:

  • What is a sin?
  • What does it mean to sin?
  • What is original sin?
  • And more importantly, what can be done about original sin?
  • Is sin inevitable in the life of a Christian?
  • Is sin something I do, or is it something that just happens?
  • Is there a remedy for the sin problem?

William Tell Didn’t Miss the Mark

William Tell is probably the most notable bow and arrow marksman of all time. His abilities are legendary as demonstrated by the apple that was pierced with an arrow while the apple was perched upon the top of the head of his young son. What if he had not been successful? What if he had missed the mark? How tragic would that have been?

“Missing the mark” — Hamartia. That is one of the translations for the word “sin” as found in the New Testament. You can see that usage in passages like Romans 6:12. In fact, it is used 39 times alone in Paul’s Letter to the Romans. In its broadest definition of the word translated “sin” it can be said that sin is any action or attitude that is less than God’s standard of love for Him, our neighbor or ourselves. But that is not the only word that is translated as our modern word “sin.” I take a different stance on sin given my Spiritual formation. I was always taught that sin is a willful act in defiance of God and His laws and standards.

What words have been translated to our word, “sin”?

Hamartia — Paul uses this Greek word in the sentence “for all have sinned (hamartia-ed) and fallen short of the glory of God.” Hamartia describes actions and attitudes that “fall short” of God’s perfection. I hamartia-ed when I punched my brother. We hamartia when we say mean things about our co-workers in order to put ourselves in a better position for a promotion. We hamartia whenever our actions and attitudes are not what God commands of us.

This is the same word used in The Gospel of Luke’s account of the Lord’s Prayer:

Forgive us our “hamartia-s” for we also forgive everyone who “hamartia-s” against us. (Luke 11:4 NIV).

Then over in The Gospel of John we find:

If we claim to be without hamartia , we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.(1 John 1:8-10 NIV).

So, does this seem to indicate an acceptance on God’s part of hamartia in our every day lives? Does an occasional hamartia cancel our deed on our heavenly mansion? Romans 6:1-2 says “God forbid!… ” in the King James Version. That is pretty strong language. Sin is not to be tolerated in the life of a Believer. Left unchecked and unconfessed hamartia has deadly consequences!

Adikia — While also often translated “sin,” adikia is unrighteousness that has perverted, immoral and deceitful aspects to it. A pastor adikia-s they use or abuse members of their flock sexually or takes advantage of them in a counseling setting. Their whole being is twisted toward impure living. Charles Wesley may have had this in mind when he described our “bent toward sinning.” The person who adikia-s has willfully and deliberating turned away from God and His love, and will spend eternity separated from God unless he or she restores that relationship with God.

Anomia — This “sin” is lawlessness. This is the habitual offender in the justice system. The guy with a rap sheet as long as your arm. This guy is living a lifestyle of sin. This is not the occasional slip of the tongue kind of sin. This is not saying something that your mom would not like if you hit your thumb with a hammer. This is not an act of carelessness in a pressure packed situation, but a pattern of life that is outside of God’s Will and God’s Grace.

Someone once described it like a fish understand no other life than swimming, people who “anomia” understand no other life than sinning. I think that is fairly descriptive.

Asebeia — Asebeia deals specifically with ungodliness and rebellion toward or rejection of God. This word is used several times in the New Testament and often with warnings and references to how to live in this present world as seen in Titus 2: 11-14. The Lord will not cut off the believer who wants to please Him and is maintaining an ongoing and vibrant relationship with Him.

Paul reminds us in Romans:

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39 NIV)

However, we can choose to reject God. We can do that through persistent and active rebellion or through passive indifference. This is the tenor and tone that the Apostle Paul uses when he talks about the immorality and idolatry in Romans 1:18-32.

Parabasis — Last but not least, parabasis is a legal term for guilt and condemnation. The sense of this word has to do with breaking the law. It is intended to be used regarding breaking God’s Law. But is has a legalistic tone as though it were used for breaking a civil or criminal law. Often in New Testament times this term was used for condemned criminals.

We deserve to hear God say “Guilty as charged!” But as forgiven children of God we don’t need to fear God’s gavel of judgment. In fact, the Holy Spirit is our comforter, guide and “lawyer” (paraclete) before the Father. He pleads our case that Jesus shed His Blood for our sins.

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:1-2 NIV)

In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. (1 John 4:17 NIV)

So what does this mean to me?

The Christian who has sincerely asked forgiveness for past sins (all kinds – hamartia, adikia, anomia, asebeia, and parabasis) and who desires to daily love God, others, and themselves, who submit to His authority in obedience and who are following the Holy Spirit as He guides us day by day and conforms us to the image of Christ, there is a life where Sin does not have dominion in our daily lives.

Will there be occasional times when Christians will sin by “missing the mark,” falling short of God’s perfection? Yes, in all likelihood. Our concern should not be whether it is possible to avoid sin, or not. The greater question is what are we going to do about it? The mark of a genuine Christian is that we do not excuse our poorly disciplined lives by accepting that sin is inevitable. Christ died not only for my sins, but also for the sin problem in my life. He died to break the power of cancelled sin.

The blood of Christ, the illuminating light of the Holy Spirit, and the power of God is capable of delivering the believer from committing sin, when that believer appeals to God for deliverance and then follows through with the Holy Spirit’s guided action(s). If the believer fails to seek this Divine delivering power, OR fails to heed the Divine guidance of the Spirit, it is virtually certain that they will commit sin. The key point is that it is God’s delivering power, not my own spiritual inner fortitude that keeps my life as a believer, sin free. I love what the hymn writer Charles Wesley wrote in one of the verses of “Oh for a Thousand Tongues to Sing”:

He breaks the power of canceled sin,
He sets the prisoner free;
His blood can make the foulest clean,
His blood availed for me.

All of this tells me that hamartia, or any of the other words for sin, should not be taken lightly. Rather they should be confessed as soon as the Holy Spirit reveals them to us. And He will reveal them to us! Since the “wages of hamartia is death” (Romans 6:23).

But more importantly, (and this will most certainly be the subject of another post) through the power and indwelling of the Holy Spirit we can live a life free from Sin. We can live a life of Christian Perfection. If we seek Him with our whole heart and are sanctified, we can live the life of Holiness that is commanded by God.

Crisis vs. Process January 11, 2006

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.

My very dear friend, Pastor David Woods, posed the following topic for discussion in a comment to one of my earlier posts. I feel that it deserves to be elevated to a posting of its own. So, Dave, here it goes.

Is Sanctification an instantaneous experience? Or, is it a gradual progression?

Dave and I once had a pastor who was fond of saying “It is not either – or, it is both – and!” That answer used to drive us crazy! We would try to get a decision in a board meeting and we would get the “both – and” answer. Not exactly what we were looking for to say the least.

But, unfortunately, I think that is precisely my feeling about how Sanctification works in our lives. I believe that there is, or should be, a specific point in our Christian experience that we can point to that is marked by a conversion experience. That date and location ought to be inscribed somewhere on the fly leaf of our Bible. Likewise, the date and location where we once and for all settled the Lordship issue and the sin question in our life ought to be written under the inscription marking our conversion. And our lifes ought to be markedly different from that point forward.

Will we live a sinless life from that point forward? Probably not. But our lives should be coming ever increasingly more like Jesus. We should be being transformed daily and being made into the image of Christ. See Romans 12:2 and Romans 8:1-3. The great apostle Paul talks about his experience in terms of a race or a journey. That certainly has a “process” feel to it. But every race has a beginning and and end. And that certainly has a “crisis” feel to it.

Are you more like Jesus today than yesterday. Are you on the journey of becoming the man or woman that God has called you to be?


Holiness Terms of Reference January 8, 2006

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.

I once heard a sermon at camp meeting years ago by Rev. Stephen Manley. In that sermon he dealt with the notion of many Christians that there are two kinds of Christians. There are Christians like you and me. And then there are “super Christians” like Paul, Peter and John. He said, and I agree, there are not two levels of Christianity. There are not two levels of Holiness. There is only Christianity and Holiness. To claim that we can never achieve or attain the level of what the Apostle Paul did is to deny the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives.

In order to properly have a dialog about Holiness, we must have a common set of terms and definitions. I am not saying that these terms and definitions are completely authoritative. (Although I do agree with them and find them to be wholely Scriptural.) I believe you must go back to the Bible for ultimate authority. But I think these terms are great source to call upon.

The following terms were taken from the Wesleyan’s website. I have modified them a little for clarity and to conform to this format. But I have kept them intact and true to the authors of these definitions.

God does not have a double standard—one for the new Christian and one for the mature Christian. His standard is one: “Be holy, because I am holy” (1 Peter 1:16 NIV). Holiness is based on the ministry of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit draws, woos, and convicts us as sinners. After we become Christians, the Holy Spirit leads and directs us in godly living. It is helpful to understand the terms associated with this process of allowing the Holy Spirit to work in our lives.

Adoption – When we enter into a personal relationship with God through Christ, God makes us His children, to which the Holy Spirit bears witness.
John 1:12-13; Romans 8:14-23; Galatians 3:26; 4:1-7; Ephesians 1:5; 2:19; 2 Corinthians 6:18; Titus 3:7; 1 Peter 1:3-4; 1 John 3:1-2; 14, 16-18; 5:1-2

Arminian – This term describes the school of theology that teaches that salvation is offered to everyone and that we have the free will to decide whether or not to enter into a relationship with God (both salvation and sanctification). Arminianism is named for James Arminius.

Born Again, New Birth, Regeneration & Initial Sanctification – These terms describe another part of salvation—what God does in us. It is newness of life, the beginning of a holy life; “the old has gone, the new has come” (2 Corinthians 5:17b)
John 3:3, 5-7; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Ephesians 2:4-5; 4:22-24; Colossians 3:9-10; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; Titus 3:4-6; James 1:18; 1 Peter 1:3

Christian Believer – This is one who has experienced repentance, confession of sins, and salvation / justification—has been born again—and who continues to obey God.
Romans 8:1-2, 10:9-10; 2 Corinthians 5:17; 1 Peter 2:9-10

Christian Perfection – This is the completeness of Christian character and the exercise of spiritual gifts in a life of holiness. The motive of one’s heart and life is to love God and love others. While Christian perfection does not mean that the Christian is without flaw or weakness, it means that the Christian can be free from intentional sin.
2 Corinthians 13:9, 11; Matthew 5:48; Ephesians 4:13; Hebrews 10:14; 2 Corinthians 7:1

Confession – An awakened sinner must confess sins committed and admit the need of a Savior and forgiveness for sins.
Psalm 51; Romans 10:8-9; 1 John 1:9

Conviction, Awakening, Quickening – These are terms for the work of the Holy Spirit in alerting a sinner to the need for forgiveness and in drawing the sinner to repentance.
John 16:7-11; Romans 13:11; 1 Corinthians 15:34; Ephesians 5:14

Entire Sanctification, Baptism of the Holy Spirit, Second Blessing – This is a distinct, second work of divine grace following initial sanctification. It is the work of the Holy Spirit in cleansing the Christian from all indwelling sin, including original sin. It is a purifying of a believer’s life. It is something that Christ has done for us by His death on Calvary. There is a cleansing of original sin or the carnal nature. Also, the Holy Spirit takes complete control of the believer’s inner nature. The Spirit fills, empowers and indwells the believer whose body is God’s temple. The believer invites Jesus to be Lord of his or her life.
Matthew 3:11; John 17:17-19; Acts 1:4-5, 8; 2:1-4; 15:8-9; 19:1-6; 26:18; 1 Corinthians 1:2; 6:11; Ephesians 4:24; 5:25-27; 1 Thessalonians 3:13; 4:3a, 7-8; 5:23-24; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; Titus 2:11-14; Hebrews 12:14; 13:12; James 4:8; 1 Peter 1:2; Jude 24

Full Salvation – This term means that Christ has provided a full and complete remedy for all sin, and His death on the cross is adequate for the entire sin problem.
Ezekiel 36:29a; Romans 8:3-4; Hebrews 10:14; 2 Peter 1:3-4; 1 John 1:7, 9

Holiness – Holiness is the process of becoming more Christlike. Holiness is a moral and spiritual purity, in which one is so full of God that there is no desire to sin although there may be temptation to sin. The believer’s desire is to obey God’s will. Taking on the image of God and a Christlike love reflects in one’s actions.
Romans 6:19, 22; 2 Corinthians 7:1; Ephesians 4:22-24; 1 Thessalonians 3:13; 4:7; Hebrews 12:14

Justification – This is the part of salvation when the repentant sinner, responding in faith and obedience, is forgiven of acquired, personal sins. Justification is what God does for us. Guilt and blame are gone, and the past is forgiven because Jesus Christ suffered our punishment through His death on the cross. Justification is undeserved, unmerited, and cannot be earned.
Isaiah 6:1-6; Acts 13:38-39; 15:11; 16:31; 26:18; Romans 1:17; 3:23-26, 28; 4:2-5; 5:1-2; 1, Corinthians 6:11; Galatians 3:6-14; 5:1-5; Ephesians 2:8-9; Philippians 3:9; Hebrews 10:38; 1 John 3:8-9

Perfect Love – This term emphasizes the nature of the moral life of those who are entirely sanctified. It means that a believer loves the Lord with all of his heart, mind, soul and strength and loves his neighbor as himself.
Matthew 5:48; John 13:34-35; 1 Thessalonians 3:12; 1 John 3:1-3; 4:16-19

Progressive Sanctification – This is the work of the Holy Spirit making the believer more like Christ; progressive sanctification is the process that leads up to and follows the moment of entire sanctification.
James 1:4; Philippians 3:12-14; Hebrews 10:23-24, 36; 2 John 4-6

Repentance, Remorse, Godly Sorrow, Forsaking of Sins – These terms refer to the response of an awakened sinner to the ministry of the Holy Spirit leading to salvation. To repent or forsake sins is to be sorry enough to quit sinning.
Psalms 34:18; 51:1-6, 17; Isaiah 55:7; Acts 2:38; 3:19; 17:30; Romans 6:1-2; 2 Corinthians 7:9-10

Restitution – This is part of repentance, often overlooked, and involves clearing up one’s past and keeping things right with others through God’s help.
Exodus 22:1-15; 2 Samuel 12:6; Proverbs 6:30-31; Luke 19:8

Salvation, Conversation – These are terms used for entering into a personal relationship with Christ.
Psalm 51:12-13; Ezekiel 36:25-26; 1 Peter 1:3; 1 John 5:1.

Sin, Original Sin, Carnal Nature – These terms are used to describe the sinful nature that remains in a believer’s life even after salvation. It has been inherited though the human family from Adam to the present. Its primary evidence is rebellion against God and selfishness exhibited in anger, strife, jealousy, envy, and in any attitude or disposition unlike Christ.
Psalm 51:5; Romans 7:14-25; 8:1-11; 2 Peter 1:3-4

Sinner – This is one who has not experienced repentance, confession of sins, and salvation / justification—one who has not been born again.
Romans 8:6-8; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10; Galatians 5:17, 19-21

Sins – These are any thoughts, words or actions that do not measure up to God’s standard. They are also any conscious, willful disobedience of God.
Galatians 5:19-21a; James 4:17; 1 Peter 4:3

Wesleyan – This is the school of theology that comes from the teaching and preaching of John Wesley. Wesley emphasized living a holy life by faith, and he was careful to distinguish between two gifts of grace from God—conversion and entire sanctification.

Witness of the Spirit – The Holy Spirit gives to the believer inner assurance of salvation or entire sanctification.
Hebrews 10:14-17; 1 John 5:6-12


I am not indicating that this is a complete list of terms necessary to carry on a dialog about Holiness of Heart & Life. But, I believe that these provide a great base for a common understanding of terms.

My Theological World View — Further Defined January 6, 2006

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.
I took the same quiz a second time. This time I scored a little differently. This time I scored as Evangelical Holiness / Wesleyan. I am an evangelical in the Wesleyan tradition. I believe that God’s grace enables me to choose to believe in him, even though I myself am totally depraved. The gift of the Holy Spirit gives me assurance of my salvation, and he also enables me to live the life of obedience to which God has called us. I am heavily influenced by John and Charles Wesley, James Arminius, the Nazarenes and the Methodists.

Evangelical Holiness/Wesleyan




Neo orthodox


Reformed Evangelical


Classical Liberal






Modern Liberal


Roman Catholic


What’s your theological worldview?
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My Theological World View January 5, 2006

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.
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I took a quiz and I scored as Evangelical Holiness / Wesleyan. I am an evangelical in the Wesleyan tradition. I believe that God’s grace enables me to choose to believe in him, even though I am totally depraved. The gift of the Holy Spirit gives me assurance of my salvation, and he also enables you to live the life of obedience to which God has called us. I am certainly influenced heavily by the likes of John and Charles Wesley, James Arminius, the Church of the Nazarene and the Methodists.

Evangelical Holiness/Wesleyan




Neo orthodox


Reformed Evangelical






Classical Liberal


Roman Catholic


Modern Liberal


What’s your theological worldview?
created with QuizFarm.com

January 3, 2006

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.
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Me at the Colosseum in Rome Posted by Picasa

January 3, 2006

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.
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Me at the Colosseum in Rome Posted by Picasa