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#44170 - Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:36 PM James 2 Concerns Sanctification  
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Recently someone I respect a lot said something to me that I have never heard before.

At the risk of over simplifying the matter, James Chapter 2 when it is talking about "faith" is talking about sanctification, not justification. (Not exact quote)


Would you agree? Please explain.

In the 'Gill a Hyper-Calvinist?' thread Pilgrim gave an article by Joel Beeke that used James 2:21 as justification, not sanctification. Did I understand Joel Beeke correctly?


Tom

Last edited by Tom; Sun Feb 07, 2010 10:43 PM.
#44171 - Mon Feb 08, 2010 8:11 AM Re: James 2 Concerns Sanctification [Re: Tom]  
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Originally Posted by Tom
At the risk of over simplifying the matter, James Chapter 2 when it is talking about "faith" is talking about sanctification, not justification. (Not exact quote)

Because you aren't using a direct quote, it is impossible to comment on what this well respected person you know actually wrote/said.

Faith is the "instrument" through which one appropriates Christ's righteousness and all the merited benefits of His perfect life and perfect death. This faith is the gift of God, not simply "offered" but actually given and applied in regeneration as it is one of the fruits of spiritual life. Salvation is by grace through faith ALONE... but not by a faith that is alone. In short, true saving faith will evidence itself in good works, i.e., a conformity to the law of God out of a heart of love for Him. This is the focus of James 2 and sorely needed today. "Easy Believism" and "Antinomianism" have run rampant for decades. People are sorely deceived in thinking they are "saved" because they gave mental assent to some statement made by a preacher or evangelist or by saying some prayer whereby they confess they aren't as good as they should be and ask Jesus to come into their heart.

James is simply challenging all who profess to "believe on Jesus" to prove their faith is genuine from a radical change in lifestyle. Again, simply put, James is asking, So, you say you believe that God is one? That's all well and good. But even the fallen angels (devils) have that kind of faith (factual knowledge). But do your thoughts, your desires, your speech, and thus your consequent acts of the will reflect that which a changed nature/heart will infallible show?

In it's most simple formulation, we can say: True faith which takes hold of Christ and by whom justification from God comes will also show itself to be true in a life of holiness.

Originally Posted by Tom
In the 'Gill a Hyper-Calvinist?' thread Pilgrim gave an article by Joel Beeke that used James 2:21 as justification, not sanctification. Did I understand Joel Beeke correctly?

yep See above. A justifying faith will always be seen because it is also a sanctifying faith. If you want a further biblical explanation then I can think of nothing better than Romans chapter 6. grin


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#44172 - Mon Feb 08, 2010 1:49 PM Re: James 2 Concerns Sanctification [Re: Pilgrim]  
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Quote
A justifying faith will always be seen because it is also a sanctifying faith.


In light of James 2:18 and its context, do I understand your above statement to be saying that true justifying faith always shows itself in sanctifying faith? So itís basically talking about both justification and sanctification. Faith justification shows itself in works sanctification.

Sorry, I had a bit of a hard time putting my thoughts into words.

Tom

#44175 - Mon Feb 08, 2010 2:46 PM Re: James 2 Concerns Sanctification [Re: Tom]  
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Originally Posted by Tom
In light of James 2:18 and its context, do I understand your above statement to be saying that true justifying faith always shows itself in sanctifying faith? So itís basically talking about both justification and sanctification. Faith justification shows itself in works sanctification.


yep I can accept that way of putting it. The faith that justifies will exhibit itself in a sanctified (progressive sanctification) life, (2:22, 26). When James says, "Was not Abraham our father justified by works,..." (v. 21), the word "justified" as used here means "evidenced". In other words, Abraham's obedience in offering up Isaac evidenced or proved that he was already righteous, i.e., "justified". Should someone argue that this is a misunderstanding of the word "justified", a little word study in Scripture will show that this meaning (evidenced) is in fact common. For example, look at: Jer 3:11; Ezk 16;51,52; Matt 11:19; Lk 16:15, and Rom 3:4. grin


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