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You Cannot Be a Christian and Hate the Doctrine of Christian Sanctification

The quote by John Calvin above says, "A man who calls himself Christian and makes no effort to live a sanctified life has no right to the name."  The quote tends to be misquoted by the "Easy Christianity" crowd and even non-Calvinist Christians would say, "I am no Calvinist but there are some things Calvin said I really agree to.  That quote is one of them."  If you are a Christian then things ought to change for the better by the grace of God.  It is really impossible that a person should come to the saving grace of the Lord Jesus Christ but never change, remain the same and remain as wicked before they were saved (1 Corinthians 6:9-11, Titus 2:11-14).  You can hear all the demonic rants by "Easy Christians" that we can have homosexuals remaining as homosexuals after they are saved, that people can sin all they want after they are saved as if there was never an encounter with God's holiness.  A continuous lifestyle of sin is a mark of somebody unsaved and definitely not a mark of a person who is truly saved.  A saved person may fall into sin and carnality but not revel or enjoy it or remain in it indefinitely.

I get it why "Easy Christians" love to say that Reformed Theology makes salvation "complicated".  It is because such people would rather want a Christianity that embraces false converts as if they were true, to have salvation in their sinfulness than salvation from their sinfulness.  It is true that salvation is not a reward for the righteous but this is salvation from sin and not just salvation from Hell.  When it comes to being a Christian it is summarized as, "Saved from sin by the grace of God and not myself." not "Saved in my sin by the grace of God and not myself."  When God saves a person it is not just merely saving them but He saves them from their sin.  Sanctification is part of the new Christian life which delivers people unworthy to inherit God's Kingdom to people to be made righteous by the grace of God.  The very statement, "And such were some of you..." specifies that when it comes to Christianity, you were delivered from a lifestyle of sin to serving the Savior.  A Christian may have some falling away but they cannot live wickedly because of the Holy Spirit.  To say that the Holy Spirit does not convict sin is an insult to His very holiness.  The Holy Spirit is holy and will rebuke sin.

Some people may not immediately or blatantly admit that they hate sanctification but their doctrine may show it.  Sometimes, you can hear these "Easy Christians" talk about the necessity of good works for reward.  I agree good works do get rewarded but to preach a person who gets saved can remain devoid of good works is an utter heresy and an insult to God's life changing grace.  The grace of God inevitably changes the life and discipleship is done to increase fruit bearing not to ensure fruit bearing.  Now Christians even the most mature ones are not 100% sinless but even the immature believer still bears fruit.  Christians may make the wrong decisions and they may make you doubt their salvation at a certain point but fruit will manifest.  The problem with teaching that there are perpetually barren and continuous carnal Christians is an insult to the grace of God and His power.  If the person was unteachable and could not bear fruit but does not the grace of God enable the saved person to be teachable and bear fruit?  The moment that these people teach that sanctification is optional in the Christian life then it is easy to assume that the person really does not value sanctification at all.  No, submitting to Christ as Lord and getting sanctified is not optional but it is the inevitable result of the Christian life!

The message is that true faith begets good works as a result.  James 2:14-26 is not about you have faith and then you must do works to be saved.  On the contrary it means that true faith is destined to produce good works.  A true faith will result to good works and that a false faith does not result to good works.  Today, James the writer of the epistle would probably be considered a "Pharisee" and a "Jesuit" by the "Easy Christianity" crowd.  But the timeless truth is that faith that is genuine results to good works as Romans 3:31 declares that faith does not make the Law void but rather faith establishes the Law.  What does it mean that I am not under Law but under grace?  It means that my obedience to the Law is not because I am under the Law, it is not a burden but a delight that I follow the Law.  I do not follow rules because I have to but I want to follow God's rules because I am now definitely saved.  If anybody teaches that grace is a license to sin then that person is really somebody who as Jude 1:4 describes as a false teacher.


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