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.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Wesley on Divine Healing

QUESTION: Did John Wesley say or write anything about divine healing?

ANSWER: He wrote a book on "Physic," recommending various medicines for different diseases, took medicines himself, and submitted to surgical operation. When seventy-two years of age, being nigh unto death, he was marvelously healed "while a few select friends were praying that, as in the case of Hezekiah, God would add to his days fifteen years." He lived fifiteen years and a few months afterwards.

Steele's Answers p. 68.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Living Without Sin

QUESTION: Are we to understand that the regenerated can live without sin?

ANSWER: They can live much better without it than with it. The eccentric Billy Hubbard was once asked this question. His reply was: "Yes, I can get along without sin first-rate." According to 1 John 3:9, 10, this is the boundary line between the children of God and the children of the devil. There is grace enough to keep every child of God from ever stepping over the fiery boundary between the known right and the known wrong.

Steele's Answers p. 67.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Pit

QUESTION: Will you express your opinion of the popular game of pit?

ANSWER: I have not become acquainted with the pit, and am traveling in the other direction.

Steele's Answers, p. 67.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Is Self-Loathing Piety Necessary?

Growth in grace, while accompanied by increasing power to abstain from actual sin, has no power to annihilate the spirit of sin, commonly called original sin. The revelation of its indwelling is more and more perfect and appalling as we advance from conversion.

Hence, in Calvinistic writings especially, we find that the measure of true piety is self-abhorrence. The more entire the consecration, the more vile in their own eyes do eminent saints appear. This standard of piety is a peculiarity of all the truly devout souls who were taught to believe that there is no power to deliver from inborn depravity this side of the grave. To these persons a piety which is not self-loathing and self-condemning is as contradictory as a piety which is not penitent.

But the sinless Jesus exhibited the marvelous proof of an impenitent piety. May not they who have washed their robes in the blood of the Lamb stand forth, even on earth, as specimens of a piety which glorifies God without self-vilification? Does God get the highest revenue of glory from us while we perpetually proclaim that the blood of Christ fails to reach the root of evil in our natures? If not, then the self-loathing style of piety, like that of David Brainerd in his early ministry, who saw so much corruption in his heart that he wondered the people did not stone him out of the pulpit, is a mere initial and rudimentary form, reflecting not the highest honor upon its Author.

Love Enthroned, Chapter 18.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Luke 22:32

QUESTION: Explain Luke 22:32: "When thou are converted, strengthen thy brethren."

ANSWER: "Converted" literally means turned about. Peter was going the wrong way when he denied his Lord. The reproving look of Jesus broke his heart. He bewailed his sin, weeping bitterly. He was converted. He obeyed his Master's order, "Right about face."

Steele's Answers p. 67.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Grace First, Then Knowledge

We are exhorted to grow in grace and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ.

Some tell us that we find the true philosophy of Christian growth by reversing this order, and putting the knowledge of Christ first, as the means of increasing in grace. But the order of the apostle — grace first and knowledge second — is the most philosophical. We grow in the knowledge of Christ through the heart, and not through the head.

We do not know Jesus till we love him, and the more we love the more intimate our knowledge of him.

The more we familiarize ourselves with the perfect character of Jesus, the more we shall admire him, just as by studying the works of Angelo we come to admire him the more. But admiration is not love. It kindles no furnace-glow in the affections; it impels the soul onward through no losses and labors, self-denials and persecutions, to the martyr's stake. As the character of Christ folds its splendors beneath the long and earnest gaze of the student, he may be growing esthetically by familiarity with so many moral beauties, and he may become more perfectly grounded in his theological beliefs respecting the Divinity of the man of Nazareth, and yet he may, in his own heart, be refusing to receive and enthrone him as his rightful king.

Love Enthroned, Chapter 18.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Does Intellectual Error Block Sanctification?

QUESTION: Do you think any person can be entirely sanctified and still assert that the apostles were not regenerated till Pentecost?

ANSWER: Yes. This is an error of the head and not of the heart. If freedom from intellectual error were a condition of obtaining purity of heart, no one would obtain that blessing, for we all harbor errors of this sort.

Steele's Answers pp. 66, 67.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Why Did Jesus Not Know the Hour of His Return?

QUESTION: Explain Mark 13:22, "But of that day or that hour knoweth no one, not even the angels in heaven, neither the Son, nor the Father."

ANSWER: It seems to have been a part of the humiliation of the Son of God while on the earth that there should be a limit to his knowledge, not of future events, but of the dates of certain great crises such as the destruction of Jerusalem and his own second coming to judge the world. Why? It has not been revealed. Perhaps it was to bring him into perfect sympathy with us who know that certain events are in the future, but we do not know when. No man, except condemned murderers, knows the date of his future death, though he is certain of the event.

Steele's Answers p. 66.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

John the Baptist's Asceticism

QUESTION: Explain Matt. 11:18, 19, "John came neither eating nor drinking," etc. "The son of man came eating and drinking" etc.

ANSWER: John was a rigid ascetic, practicing periodic fasting as specially meritorious, though of course he had to eat and drink to live. Jesus Christ did not periodically fast. He was not an ascetic, nor did he teach his disciples to fast, because it did no more harmonize with the Good News he proclaimed than would a patch of new cloth on an old garment or new wine in old and brittle wine-skins. His eating and drinking were natural, a model of temperance. Fasting is nowhere taught in the New Testament as a Chrisitan duty.

Steele's Answers pp. 65, 66.