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.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Sancification and Regeneration in 1 John 1:9

QUESTION: Would not I John 1:9 alone, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness," naturally teach entire sanctification when regenerated, to one who is free from all preconceptions?

ANSWER: Perhaps it would, if he had failed to note the prayers for the entire cleansing of those who are already children of God and the exhortations to Christians to go on unto perfection. But an observant Greek reader would understand from the two verbs of different meaning in the aorist tense that two distinct and decisive works are to be done. Even Alford, who is not friendly to the doctrine of Christian perfection as taught by his brother churchman, John Wesley, admits that "to cleanse from all unrighteousness is plainly distinguished from to forgive us our sins; distinguished as a further process; as, in a word, sanctification distinct from justification. The two verbs are aorists, because the purpose and faithfulness and justice of God are to do each as one great complex act — to justify and to sanctify wholly and entirely." He says, "to do each," not both together, as one great act. In 1737 the Wesleys discovered "that men are justified before they are sanctified."

Steele's Answers p. 135, 136.