Friday, January 11, 2013

Love drives out sin

The vital quality [of Christian perfection] was a heart right toward God (a relationship), seeking only to love him, glorify him and enjoy him forever, through faith in Jesus Christ. The emphasis is undoubtedly on the positive presence of love in the heart that leaves no room for anything contrary. In other words, it is the infilling of love that lies at the heart of the experience, not a negative image of prior cleansing or purification before love can enter. Wesley’s preferred picture of the experience of Christian perfection began with the person’s positive desire to be filled with love, rather than having sin cleansed away.—Wesley as a Pastoral Theologian, page 123

<idle musing>
I like that. So much of what is written about Christian growth concentrates on purification—which easily turns into striving and works. This is a refreshing emphasis on desiring to be filled. I read a comparison of the Christian life with the oak tree. Oak leaves don't all fall off in the fall; they are pushed out in the spring by the new growth (if you have oak trees you know what I'm talking about! You rake leaves 3 seasons of the year). Same with the Christian; the new life of Christ drives out the old life of self.
</idle musing>

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