— The Gospel of the Comforter, Chapter 8.
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.
Tuesday, January 13, 2015
The Expulsive Power of a New Affection
In entire sanctification the Holy Spirit violates no law of mental philosophy, but strictly conforms His work to the nature and faculties of the mind. The stronger affection expels the weaker. Drop golden eagles plentifully in the paths of beggars scrambling for cents, and the awakened thirst for gold will cure the mania for copper. The superior banishes the inferior. It was Dr. Chalmers who eloquently discoursed on "The Expulsive Power of a New Affection." To expel all proneness to sin, all that is required is to inspire an unconquerable love of holiness, not in the abstract, but as embodied in a person in the sphere of the human affections, a person who by his self-sacrifice has laid in our minds a foundation for eternal gratitude. Then will this new affection instantly expel all base loves and keep them out so long as this new affection is enthroned within. Now it is the office of the Paraclete to inspire this affection. This He does by pouring light upon the person of the divine Christ, making Him a bright reality, a sun above the king of day, infinitely superior in splendors. This manifestation of Christ in the heart was an experience of Paul in addition to His revelation of Himself to the eye and the ear of the chief persecutor as he drew near to Damascus. The outward manifestation arrested his career of hostility to Christ; the inward revelation awakened an undying love, the motive power of that heroic course of labors, privations, perils and sufferings which ended when Rome's imperial axe severed his head from his body. During all this period, as Chrysostom says, "Paul had Christ speaking within himself." Thus by deep inward revelations, as well as by outward manifestations, was the great apostle prepared, as every preacher should be, for the work of the ministry. Well does Bengel argue that the Son of God must first be revealed in the preacher before He can be revealed by him. This revelation of Christ in Paul's consciousness was the sum and substance of that "excellency of knowledge of Jesus Christ, for whom he suffered the loss of all things." The time of this inward revelation of Christ by the Holy Spirit is unknown. The exegetes agree that it is not identical with Saul's vision of the risen Christ, and that it must have occurred afterward, either in Damascus, in Arabia, or after his return from that country, while sojourning in his native Tarsus.