Thursday, February 26, 2009

Working Out Our Own Salvation

Joshua 3:5 says, "Joshua told the people, 'Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you.'"

Some versions translate it "sanctify yourselves." This brings some interesting conversations about our understanding of sanctification. It seems that it was the individual's responsibility to sanctify himself/herself. This challenges the Wesleyan understanding of sanctification.

In Woudstra's commentary of Joshua, he points out that it seems that the people should sanctify themselves (by certain practices) so that they would be more open to the action of God on the next day (the Israelites crossing an "interupted" Jordan River).

This understanding seems to sound similar to our concept of practicing spiritual disciplines. We pray, read the Word, fast, study, sit in silence, ect. to be more sensitive to the moving of the Spirit of God. If we are more open to the Spirit of God, then the Holy Spirit can work in us more freely -- drawing us closer to Himself. With this understanding, as we practice spiritual disciplines we are, in fact, being more sanctified.

What do you think of this interpretation of this verse?

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