Thursday, April 15, 2010

Could you be a Saint and not even know it?


'Righteousness is said to be ours, not because it is ours as if from ourselves but because it becomes ours from divine generosity. As we say in the Lord's Prayer, "Give us this day our daily bread." Notice that we say "our bread" and yet we pray for it to be given to us. It becomes ours when we receive it yet it is God's because he gives it. Therefore it is God's as a gift; it becomes genuinely ours as we receive it.' ~ Gregory the Great.

So can we be righteous? What about - can we be a saint? I spoke with a Catholic brother recently, who spoke about Saints in the history of the church and he asked my opinion. I responded with the belief that the Catholic Church has elevated the concept of sainthood too high, and that really a saint should be someone who is a holy and righteous person before God. He then asked, 'So are you a saint?' Ouch. Good question. I said tentatively, 'Well, according to my (probably innacurate) definition of what a saint is... yes...' Silence... Of course, we quickly qualify this, with the fact that this is a gift from the Lord, and nothing that I can do, can appropriate this righteousness, except the faith to believe in the atoning work of Jesus.

Maybe this righteousness theology is a little confronting. This is really 'inputed righteousness', meaning that because of the blood of Jesus and the grace of God, we can be righteous. Surely we believe this? Without holiness its impossible to see the Lord. We can be righteous - set apart, sanctified.

2 Samuel 22:25 - 'The Lord has rewarded me according to my righteousness' [the words of David - so we presuppose, David was fine with saying that the Lord had given him righteousness]
Psalm 37:6 - 'He makes your righteousness shine like the dawn'
Matthew 6:33 - 'But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well...'
Romans 3:22 - 'This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ, to all who believe'

What about being a 'saint'?
Psalm 31:23 - 'Love the Lord, all his saints!'
Acts 9:32 - 'As Peter traveled about the country, he went to visit the saints in Lydda

http://www.biblegateway.org/ defines a 'Saint' as one separated from the world and consecrated to God; one holy by profession and by covenant; a believer in Christ (Ps. 16:3; Rom. 1:7; 8:27; Phil. 1:1; Heb. 6:10).

Understandably this is radical post-reformation theology, but from my theological lense and my evangelical upbringing, I ask the question, 'Are you a saint?'

I'm sure you have an opinion on this.


www.twitter.com/petebrookshaw  

3 comments:

  1. Congratulations on your appearance on ISalvos - a memorable performance, from someone who will be a significant voice in the Salvos future, I'm sure.

    Your blog is becoming more engaging, too. Keep up the good work!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks David. Appreciate the feedback. I was reading some of my blogs back in 2006. Talk about immature. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yes, I am a saint, although not a part of any established Christian church.

    I am a believer and so, a saint.

    ReplyDelete

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