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 started this on Dec. 10, 2011. I completed blogging from that book 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. Since then, I have begun adding material from his Bible commentaries. I also re-blog many of the old posts.

Friday, September 5, 2014

The Highest Possibilities of Grace Divine

Sin paralyzes the will even where it fails to put a film over the eye. In the downfall of our race, in the transgression of our first parents, all our spiritual nature was damaged; the intellect the least, the will and moral sensibilities the most. Whence is the strength by which this weakness can be removed? Certainly not from within man, but from without; not from beneath, but from above, even from the source of all power, God himself. If fallen man is to overcome the evil propensities in his depraved nature and sit with King Jesus on his throne as he overcame and is set down with his Father in his throne, he must secure a mighty ally in the war which he must wage with the world, the flesh, and the devil. With this ally he can walk arm in arm in unsullied whiteness through the pollutions of the present world.

As Jesus Christ is to-day in spotless holiness (1 John iv. 17), so are we who believe in him with a faith that lays hold of the highest possibilities of grace divine.

It used to be argued that although man in his fallen estate has the natural ability to repent and believe, he has a total moral inability by reason of the perversity of his will. This deadlock between natural and moral ability was formerly urged as an excuse for impenitence, till the special call and the irresistible grace of the Holy Spirit should come to those who are written down in the register of God's secret will as unconditionally elected to eternal life before the foundation of the world. When Jesse Lee, the apostle of Methodism, came into New England in the last decade of the eighteenth century, he met everywhere, among saints and sinners, preachers and people alike, this pernicious doctrine, dishonoring God and destroying the souls of men. He banished it from the pulpits of New England by preaching the impartiality of the Divine regards, the universal extent of the atonement, and the GRACIOUS ABILITY of every sinner to repent through the help of the Holy Spirit freely bestowed upon all without respect of persons.

— edited from Jesus Exultant Chapter 11.

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