Intro

This blog gains its name from the book Steele's Answers published in 1912. It began as an effort to blog through that book, posting each of the Questions and Answers in the book in the order in which they appeared. I began the project on Dec. 10, 2011. I completed it on July 11, 2015. Along the way, I began to also post snippets from Dr. Steele's other writings — and from some other holiness writers of his times. I still do that every once in a while.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Repression or Purification?

It is a remarkable fact that while the Greek language richly abounds in words signifying repression, a half score of which occur in the New Testament, and are translated by to bind, bruise, cast down, conquer, bring into bondage, let, repress, hold fast, hinder, restrain, subdue, put down, and take by the throat, yet not one of these, συνέχω, κατέχω, κωλύω, συγκλείω, καταπαύω, is used of inbred sin; but such verbs as signify to cleanse, to purify, to mortify or kill, to crucify, and to destroy. When St. Paul says that he keeps under his body and brings it into subjection, he makes no allusion to the σάρξ, the flesh, the carnal mind, but to his innocent bodily appetites. In Pauline usage body is different from flesh. We have diligently sought in both the Old Testament and the New for exhortations to seek the repression of sin. The uniform command is to put away sin, to purify the heart, to purge out the old leaven, and to seek to be sanctified throughout spirit, soul, and body. Repressive power is nowhere ascribed to the blood of Christ, but rather purifying efficacy. Now, if these verbs, which signify to cleanse, wash, crucify, mortify, or make dead, and to destroy, are all used in a tropical or metaphorical sense, it is very evident that the literal truth signified is something far stronger than repression. It is eradication, extinction of being, destruction.

Mile-Stone Papers, Part 1, Chapter 13.