Profiles in faith 4

Profiles in Faith

John Wesley-4

July 12, 2020

Hebrews 12:13-15 The Voice 13 Make straight paths for your feet so that what is lame in you wont be put out of joint, but will heal. 14 Pursue peace with everyone, and holiness, since no one will see God without it. 15 Watch carefully that no one falls short of God’s favor, that no well of bitterness springs up to trouble you and throw many others off the path.

Ezekiel 36:25-27 The Voice 25 I will sprinkle you with clean water, and you will be clean. I will wash away all of your dirtiness, and you will be clean and pure, free from the taint of idols. 26 I will plant a new heart and new spirit inside of you. I will take out your stubborn, stony heart and give you a willing, tender heart of flesh. 27 And I will put My Spirit inside of you and inspire you to live by My statutes and follow My laws.

Our last lesson discovered Wesley’s conversion experience moved him from ‘striving to relying’ on God’s grace and forgiveness through the Blood of Jesus.  In Wesley’s sermon, The Circumcision of the Heart, he concluded the sermon with “Here is the sum of the perfect law, circumcision of the heart.  Let the spirit return to God that gave it, with the whole train of its affections…Let it(heart) be continually offered up to God through Christ, in flames of holy love.”  The holiness call has always established Pentecostal Holiness Church’s standard for theology.  Holiness is linked with the work of Sanctification.  Luke 3:9 English Standard Version reads,”Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees. Every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.”  At the Fall, our inner life developed roots of sin such as; anger, bitterness, envy, lust, foul speech, greed, and other vices, thus, the work of Sanctification is a one time experience cutting these sinful roots off at the ground.  As we yield to the Spirit’s work, these vices are considered dead and controlling our daily life no more.  This will lead to a greater love of God, His Word, and His Creation.  Wesley wrote, “Before when an evil thought came in, they looked up, and it vanished away.  But now it does not come in, there being no room for this in the soul full of God.  They are free from wanderings in prayer.”  This is a high standard for Christian living and the Pentecostal Holiness Church desires this standard.  Our early preachers used to say, “It takes out of you the things that make you mad.”

G. F. Taylor’s last years found him correcting personal mistakes in his relationships as growth towards perfect love.  He wrote, “When I feel any anger grow inside, I run to God as chicks run to the hen for protection.”  May our church reconnect with these foundational truths in our theology.  A final warning begs explanation, do not make Holiness and Sanctification a law, but a life lived in grace!

Blessings!  Pastor Stan