Salvation: The Way of Holiness
See handout for lecture outline
See also handout on theology of holiness and scripture on perfection
We focus on Salvation as a way, esp. about the doctrine of holiness.
This becomes more decisive as we live in a world of religious diversity.
There are many views for salvation, spirit baptism, etc.
Foundations as Salvation as a Way.
- Biblical figures
- Israel was in the Exodus on the way to salvation.
- Jesus was on the Exodus by sending the disciples unto the end of the earth
- Early Church was called the followers on the way. We have the Christian experiences on the way. We journey with God and in God and journey to God.
- Biblical terms: the bible is more systemic, instead of doctrinal.
- righteousness, justification: the Hebrew – tsede, dikaio. This two terms are Protestant word, in order describe was God does – justify. (Mt.6:33), to justice – the meaning changed with the reformation. The question was, whether justification is a declaring or making righteous. It is both. The ethic comes in. The forensic is that righteousness and ethical come together. God is righteous, his being is in his doing. Ps.89:14. Righteousness points to the demands of a right relationship. Yahweh acts in righteousness. (Micha6:8) The Lord requires to act righteous, to love .. and to walk humble. Righteousness in Hebrew is right relation. Gen.18:19: The forensic and the ethical can not be separated. (Ps.43:1.2) Nobody has a claim of righteousness outside the righteousness of God. The righteousness changes the people. Hab.2:4. The righteous shall live by faith. The righteous and the faith are joint together. The key of tsede is relationship with the righteous law.
Paul continues the necessity of a right relations 1.Cor.6:11. The goals are set by Jesus. Justification means a changes life (Gal.2). justification to right relationship can not be separated from the Spirit. Gal.5.5. We wait for the final justification, it is still a matter of relationship. True faith is obedience. True faith is faithful. Justification stands not alone, but Justification by grace is unto sanctification.
Christ brought the law to its end, and everybody who believes is made righteous.
The ordos solutis can not be dichotomized, it is very relational. It is an ongoing relationship.
Luther saw James as contradicting to Paul, but we can not separate the being from the doing.
The faith that justifies is never alone, it is faith working through because faith and love are relational terms and are relations. Faith is faithful through love.
When God ask a question, tension arises, e.g. Abel, Peter, etc. James shows us the faith and works belong together.
- Perfection and holiness.
What about the command of being perfected. Love God, be holy, be perfect, love one another as I have loved you. Those statements bind us to God in a godly relationship.
Noah walked righteous and perfect before God. Righteousness is connected with perfection. Job.1:8. What does the devil say about myself? What does God say about us.
1.Chron. 1:19 to keep the statues, commands.
Ps. 119. Blessed are those who work perfected, and that seek him with his whole heart.
Ps.18: the way of the Lord is making perfect. The merciful are perfect. The Jews delight in the law, because God is at the center of the law.
Mt.5:8: Be perfect, as you father is perfected, be holy as your father is holy.
Mt.19.21, 2. Cor. Let us cleanse ourselves from the old.
Perfection, Cleansing and holiness are joined together You are perfected, be mortified, be perfect.
We loose our focus, when we are more concerned with packing the pew, instead of presenting the saints.
Hebr.2:10. Jesus was made perfect. When we are made perfect, we recognize the evil much easier.
Jesus comes to sanctify us to the truth.
Heb.13:29 he makes perfect to all the good will.
James 3:2, 1 Joh.2:5.6. Love and obedience are together.
The goal is that we live in reference to the Lord and not in fear towards God.
Perfection: 1.Jn.1:7 shows us that light, walking ,etc are all interrelated. Walking and light and both intersect. If we walk in the light. No evil is present. Then we sin, we get dirty and distant. Jesus became sin for us, he became dirty. Jesus is bringing us near to God.
We are made useful for the father’s use.
Purity of heart refers to the whole heart in integrity. Impurity is a violations of moral integrity, grieves the Spirit and breaks fellowship.
We need to be single hearted, pure in heart.
We loose the doctrine of perfection, not by voted it out, but by indifference.
Biblical perfection is not a perfectionism. Beyond Perfectionism there is no further development. Biblical perfection includes also being tempt-able.
Heb.10,10 Perfection is crises development.
Perfection is in the OT and NT integrity.
Perfection is integrity along the line, of maturation and it is the process of riping. It began in the beginning of Christian life, and in essential to love. Perfection is connected with love, that’s why perfection has been so long neglected.
James 1:15. The word is desire, we are not tempted of what we don’t desire. When desire has conceived, he brings sin, thus death. There is progression of sin. Desire, sin, death
- Holiness, sanctification
Holiness – qatesh – has the idea of separation, a cutting of what is not from God. To be holy is to be separated unto the holy. God is sanctifying us. The firing glory shines out from the holy. The profane is the opposite of the holy, it is the common. If we make fun of scripture we are profane, and unholy. To be holy is to be dedicated to God. Worship without fear is no worship. Worship needs deep reference. The holiness of God is a consuming fire.
God is jealous of his name, he does not allow worship if it is contrary to his nature.
Holiness is associated with wrath. Hes.38:
(see handout on Theology of Holiness for further points)
Holiness refers to the essential nature of God. To be sanctified is to be God-ivied.
Salvation is the way of thinking of all the wholeness, of which God brings us by the Holy Spirit. Salvation is all the provision of God, that Christ gave us in Christ through the Spirit, healing, etc.
Discipleship is then the essential ongoing relationship with Jesus.
The commission to disciple is found in Mt.28.18. Baptize into the name, that is into the reality of God, therefor teach everything.
We deny ourselves to a world that falls away, and choose simultaneously the cross. The cross leads home. The primary reference is Jesus Christ, a person and not only principles.
The community loves as he loves.
Hear oh Israel, hearing is also going and doing it. Following Jesus on the journey requires discipleship, which is in love.