I was almost there but for the lukewarm postum induced backslide to hot coffee
Divinely-empowered perfect obedience to the divine law is both the goal and the outcome of the Christian’s relationship with Jesus, as it is articulated in both Scripture and the writings of Ellen G. White.
Elmer, thanks for that. I’m curious whether the “LGT” thing is actually a return to more orthodox, historic christian doctrine or not. Perhaps I’m misunderstanding, but it seems to me to have similarities to the Orthodox concept of “theosis” and the historic christian belief that all Christians are called to sainthood and the historic christian embrace of asceticism as an aid on the path to sainthood.
Thanks Kevin. Since SDAs reject the sacraments, what aids are offered instead in this pursuit of sainthood?
You can find anything you want in scripture if you look hard enough and squint just right and choose just the right proof texts in just the right translations.
Perfect obedience is what the early Christians like Paul insisted was impossible, thus the need for Jesus sacrifice and the state of grace offered by Jesus’ death.
You seem to be directly opposing the standard Christian teaching, also articulated by the SDA church, that no one can follow the law all of the time, that Jesus was and always will be the only sinless human to have lived.
Surrender to the written counsel of God and daily entreaties for divine power in the practical circumstances of life. Such New Testament passages as Phil. 2:12-13; Col. 1:26-29; and II Peter 1 are a great place to start.
That’s not the standard Christian teaching, but an innovation that appeared along with the Protestant reformation. The standard Christian teaching, universal for the first 3/4th of the Christian era, is that Christ’s mother was also sinless.
See, for example, Hippolytus, writing in ~AD 210:
But the pious confession of the believer is that, with a view to our salvation, . . . the Creator of all things incorporated with Himself a rational soul and a sensible body from the all-holy Mary, ever-virgin, by an undefiled conception, without conversion, and was made man in nature, but separate from wickedness: the same was perfect God, and the same was perfect man; the same was in nature at once perfect God and man (Against Beron and Helix, Frag VIII)
What is the use of daily entreaties for divine power, if one chooses to abstain from the means by which God chooses to extend that power to us?
You can’t find anything you want in Scripture or the writings of Ellen White and still be honest, as our beloved U.S. Attorney General has lately demonstrated in his ill-fated effort to support from the Bible the unconscionable treatment of migrants crossing our southern border. I was impressed yesterday on some of the television talk shows how a number of commentators possessed a knowledge of the Bible sufficient to point this out.
Contrary to your claim, the apostle Paul does not deny that perfect obedience is possible for the Christian through the power of sanctifying grace. Any number of passages from his writings make it plain that this attainment is both possible and necessary for the believer (e.g. Rom. 8:4,13; I Cor. 15:34; II Cor. 10:4-5; Eph. 5:27; I Thess. 5:23). Perhaps the strongest such passage is the following:
“Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God” (II Cor. 7:1).
Sounds like sinlessness to me. And other New Testament (and Old Testament) authors teach the same thing (e.g. Psalm 4:4; 119:1-3,11; Zeph. 3:13; I Peter 2:21-22; 4:1; II Peter 3:10-14; I John 1:7,9; 3:2-3,7; Jude 24: Rev. 3:21; 14:5).
It is the Bible that describes the means by which heaven’s power is brought within our grasp. And the Bible is clear that human mediators do not exist for the Christian, as the apostle Paul writes that “there is one God, and one mediator between God and man, the Man Christ Jesus” (I Tim. 2:5).
Do you believe this to mean that humans cannot intervene with God on the behalf of other humans?
Intercessory prayer, yes. Dispensing God’s forgiving and empowering grace, no. The latter prerogatives belong exclusively to the Lord so far as the Bible is concerned.
Whatever you do, Spectrumites…DO NOT have a Mexican themed dinner with friends! An orgy will undoubtedly soon be upon you!
Of course, the antinomians among us (you know who you are) are already okay with this.
I’ve eaten spicy food for years, still waiting on these effects, or to witness this effect, in anyone.
Can humans be the conduits through which God pours out this grace on other humans?
Thanks for answering my question, but I still don’t know what this means. Do you mean you think that by trying hard in the proper way you can achieve actual sinlessness so that then you no longer require the grace provided by Jesus through his sacrifice?
If so, have you ever known of anyone to actually achieve such a state?
This sounds rather like the state of nirvana Buddhists seek to achieve, which is also elusive.
It’s not about “trying” hard, Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
Man can do nothing on his own, there is nothing that we have or can do that is good unless Christ is giving us the strength to do it.
Man can not read the heart (mind) only Jesus knows our every thought and no, I do not know anyone who is perfect, the only perfect example is Jesus Christ.
Welcome to the club!! I too am not perfect…
Have you ever heard of the saying… Be patient God is not done with me yet?
Human beings receive the forgiving and empowering grace of God when they meet the conditions Scripture talks about (II Chron. 7:14; Prov. 28:13; Isa. 55:7; Matt. 6:14-15; I John 1:9). Human beings can certainly bless other humans by their own display of divine grace and attributes, but no human being can be saved through the mediation of any except Jesus Christ, as Scripture makes plain (I Tim. 2:5).
That in no way answers what I asked.
Please understand that no one who embraces the Biblical promise of sinless obedience here on earth is teaching or believing that the grace provided by Jesus’ sacrifice is no longer needed by one who achieves such a state.
First of all, no one can live a sinless life without the empowering grace of the Lord Jesus Christ (e.g. Titus 2:11-13; Heb. 12:28). Too many people think of grace only as the instrument of our forgiveness, which of course it surely is (Rom. 3:24; Eph. 1:7). But Biblical grace is also the means of our empowerment, as the verses quoted above—as well as others (e.g. II Cor. 12:9)—bear witness.
The Bible is clear that the blood of Jesus doesn’t stop with forgiving our sins. The Bible is also clear that the blood of Jesus sanctifies and changes the believer internally (e.g. Heb. 13:12,20-21). Biblical salvation is accomplished by both justifying and sanctifying righteousness (Rom. 3:24; Eph. 1:7; II Thess. 2:13), both by the work of Christ for us (II Cor. 5:21) and by His work in us (Titus 3:5).
Thank you Kevin P. When we make a commitment to believe and follow God, He justifies us (imputes His grace) (Theol. To adjudge as one’s own (the sin or righteousness) of another; as, the righteousness of Christ is imputed to us.
We in turn live a daily life (moment by moment) to glorify God in all we do (impart His grace to others) To communicate the knowledge of; to make known; to show by words or tokens; to tell; to disclose.
In all we say and do is the reflection of what master we serve, God or Satan
We can not bless other human beings unless we have been blessed first…
To become “perfect” in Christ can only be achieved if we are living a life (moment by moment) connected to Christ, and to be connected to Christ one must be willing to forsake the world and the error that is in the world. Sounds easy!! But… It’s not…Satan butts in and disrupts the journey, praise God for His son Jesus and His sacrifice of Himself on the cross of Calvary so when we make mistakes we can ask for forgiveness.
When Jesus comes the second time, the atonement ( in theology: The expiation of sin made by the obedience, personal suffering, and death of Christ) will be complete and sin will be eradicated forever.