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.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Oneness With Christ

The advocates of an advanced Christian experience insist, with great unanimity, that there is a well defined line separating it from the former Christian life. We are often called on to state the specific difference — to draw the line between these two religious states; hence the attempts to discriminate between the new birth and entire sanctification are some of them conclusive, and others unsatisfactory. We are not whetting our theological razor to assist at this hairsplitting; we need less theorizing and more exemplification — less dogma and more experience.

Are there men and women now on earth living the so called "higher life?" There are saints treading the earth day by day, victors over the world and sin, "dead indeed unto sin," and "free indeed" from its very indwelling. It was not so with their former Christian state. Can they tell us what is the most conspicuous line running through their consciousness, separating these experiences. The unanimous testimony is, that it is a sense of oneness with Christ, contrasting most strongly with the former feeling of duality, or twoness, if we may coin a Saxon word, instead of borrowing from the Latin. We have heard of a converted Indian who came to the missionary one day in great distress, saying, "There are two Indians inside of me — a good and a bad." He expressed what all Christians feel in their initial spiritual life. There is a painful distraction. The secret is, that self is still alive, and disputing with Christ the throne of the soul. Self has not learned the difficult lesson of perfect and joyful submission. There is an inward schism between the spiritual and carnal forces. The prayer of the psalmist has not been offered in faith, "Unite my heart to fear thy name."

Octavius, who had been a triumvir, thought it for the interest of peace that the world should have but one ruler, and, styling himself Augustus, he became that ruler by the defeat of Mark Antony. It was found that a three-men power, or a two-men power, only provoked strife. It is certainly for your soul's peace, my dear reader, that you should henceforth have but one sovereign. The one-man power is what you need — the God-man. Which will you have for your king? Jesus, or Barabbas or Self? Which will bring in genuine, eternal peace? The Prince of Peace. He is able to dethrone and extinguish self as a foe to his reign.

— from Love Enthroned, Chapter 14.