What is The Doctrine Of "Sinless perfection?"

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by JesusFan, Nov 30, 2011.

  1. JesusFan

    JesusFan
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    What would be its official theological basis, and have any baptist groups ever official held to it as part of a a tenant of Faith?
     
  2. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    As I understand it, a believer may progress through sanctification until he simply stops sinning.

    Finney said in his Systematic Theology that it involves no longer being able to sin, and that grace is no longer required.

    My source said Finney opposed this view.

    I do not know of any Baptist group which holds to this idea. I think it may be found in some Pentecostal-type groups. I also believe that it is also Wesleyan in nature.

    Maybe others can shed some more light on this.
     
  3. JesusFan

    JesusFan
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    Think that John Wesley actually developed this concept, but he meant that we would get to the place where all our attitudes would be "purely motivated", maybe like all good works would be counted by God as true good works?
     
  4. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    Hey, I actually stopped sinning for a while.

    I think it was for about seven hours.

    Then I woke up.
     
  5. padredurand

    padredurand
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    If you don't mind a bit of reading take a look at John Wesley's Plain Account of Christian perfection found here. Wesley's sermon entitled Christian Perfection is found here. On Perfection is here.

    I spent tens of thousands of dollars getting my Weslyan education. You'll have to do some work on your own. :tongue3:

    Let me help a little..... Source

    United Methodist Book of Discipline (para. 62)
    Entire sanctification is a state of perfect love, righteousness and true holiness which every regenerate believer may obtain by being delivered from the power of sin, by loving God with all the heart, soul, mind and strength, and by loving one's neighbor as one's self. Through faith in Jesus Christ this gracious gift may be received in this life both gradually and instantaneously, and should be sought earnestly by every child of God.
    Wesley believed that Christ's death on the cross made it possible not only for sinners to be saved by grace, but, indeed, for them to be saved to the uttermost. Entire sanctification was restoration to the image of God, being made perfect in love toward God and neighbor.
    It is thus that we wait for entire sanctification; for a full salvation from all our sins, from pride, self-will, anger, unbelief; or, as the Apostle expresses it, "go on unto perfection." But what is perfection? The word has various senses: Here it means perfect love. It is love excluding sin; love filling the heart, taking up the whole capacity of the soul. It is love "rejoicing evermore, praying without ceasing, in every thing giving thanks." [Sermon 43--The Scripture Way of Salvation]
    "Well, but what more than this can be implied in entire sanctification?" It does not imply any new kind of holiness: Let no man imagine this. From the moment we are justified, till we give up our spirits to God, love is the fulfilling of the law; of the whole evangelical law, which took place of the Adamic law, when the first promise of "the seed of the woman" was made. Love is the sum of Christian sanctification; it is the one kind of holiness, which is found, only in various degrees, in the believers who are distinguished by St. John into "little children, young men, and fathers." The difference between one and the other properly lies in the degree of love. And herein there is as great a difference in the spiritual, as in the natural sense, between fathers, young men, and babes. [Sermon 83--On Patience]
    Entire sanctification, or Christian perfection, is neither more nor less than pure love; love expelling sin, and governing both the heart and life of a child of God. The Refiner's fire purges out all that is contrary to love, and that many times by a pleasing smart. Leave all this to Him that does all things well, and that loves you better than you do yourself. [Letters to Mr. Walter Churchey, of Brecon]
    But how is one sanctified? Wesley often had to defend this doctrine against charges that he was preaching some form of works righteousness. But nothing could have been further from the truth. Entire sanctification was not a goal to be achieved, but a gift to be received. Like justification, sanctification is the gracious gift of God, received by faith.
    I have continually testified in private and in public, that we are sanctified as well as justified by faith. And indeed the one of those great truths does exceedingly illustrate the other. Exactly as we are justified by faith, so are we sanctified by faith. Faith is the condition, and the only condition, of sanctification, exactly as it is of justification. It is the condition: None is sanctified but he that believes; without faith no man is sanctified. And it is the only condition: This alone is sufficient for sanctification. Every one that believes is sanctified, whatever else he has or has not. In other words, no man is sanctified till he believes: Every man when he believes is sanctified. [Sermon 43]
     
    #5 padredurand, Nov 30, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 30, 2011
  6. JesusFan

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    Would this be linked with the "second act of Grace" that holiness groups and classical pentaclostolists teach about? That there is another/deeper move of the HS in ones life after salvation, not all having received that yet from God?
     
  7. drfuss

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    Below is a part of the statement of faith of the Pentecostal Holiness Denomination concerning Sanctification. Notice the third line
    "instantaneous work of grace" also called the second work of grace.

    The Pentecostal Holiness denomination is the oldest penetcostal denomination and is the only pentecostal denomination that holds to the second work of grace. Later denominations, such as the Assemblies of God, left the Pentencostal Holiness denomination mostly over their second work of grace belief. There may be non-pentecostal denominations that also believe in the second work of grace. Who knows what the pentecostal cults, such as the Oneness Pentecostal denomination, believes concerning sinliss perfection.

    I have put in bold the part about sinless perfection.

    10. Sanctification
    Sanctification in the sense of the above cleansing, and in the sense of a complete dedication to God, including a full and unreserved “setting apart” or “consecration” of the life to God, is a definite, instantaneous work of grace, obtainable by faith on the part of the justified believer. (See Romans 5:1, 2: “... justified by faith ... peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand and rejoice....” Also see 1 John 1:9: “... to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Note also Titus 2:14: “... redeem from all iniquity and purify...” and Acts 26:18: “... forgiveness of sins and inheritance among them which are sanctified.” Also refer to the following Scriptures for those who “are sanctified”: Acts 20:32; 26:18; 1 Corinthians 1:2, 6-10; Hebrews 2:11; 10:14; Jude 1).

    This is purity and dedication; it is not maturity, but the crisis experience that marks the beginning of the sanctified life, in which there is certainly room for development, progress, and growth in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18). But remember we must get into this grace before we can grow in it.

    It is not absolute perfection, not angelic perfection; not “sinless perfection,” if the term is used to imply the impossibility of a sanctified person’s falling into sin. We do not believe it is impossible for the sanctified to commit sin; but we do believe it is possible for a sanctified person not to commit sin (Luke 1:73-75; Titus 2:11, 12; 1 John 1:7; 2:1, 6; 3:5-10; 5:18). We are aware of John’s statement in 1 John 1:8, but these words apply to those who deny the need for cleansing, not to those who have experienced it and are living the sanctified life.

    This is Christian perfection – in which we love the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength and our neighbors as ourselves (Mark 12:29-31); in which we love Christ and keep His commandments (John 14:15), among which is this, “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not” (1 John 2:1).

    The sanctified life is one of separation from the world, a selfless life, a life of devotion to all the will of God, a life of holiness in accordance with Romans 6:22; 12:1, 2; 2 Corinthians 7:1; 1 Thessalonians 4:7; 5:23; Hebrews 12:14; James 1:27; and 1 Peter 1:15, 16. It is a life controlled by “perfect love” which “casteth out fear” (1 John 4:16-21).
     
  8. JesusFan

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    That reads a lot like taking "extreme" lordship salvation andmix it with "pentacostal power!"

    pretty much a receipe for failure in the Christian life, as well intended, but doable!
     
  9. drfuss

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    I never attended a Pentecostal Holiness church, but had neighbors long ago who did. Based on their current statment of Faith, there are three levels in the Christain life: salvation, speaking in tongues, and the second work of grace. Based on a discussion with a recent graduate of their Bible school, they still believe in the second work of grace as well as the others.
     
  10. JesusFan

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    That would be in line with what I was introduced to while in pentacostal circles...

    They failed to see from the scriptures that ALL of us ewere baptised into.by same Spirit when regenerated by God, and that there is NO super saint classification, all of us have same from the Lord!
     

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