A CRITIQUE OF THE HIGHER LIFE MOVEMENT

Higher-Purpose

A CRITIQUE OF THE HIGHER LIFE MOVEMENT 

By Jay Wegter

INTRODUCTION

The concept of the higher Christian life arose in the nineteenth century in connection with the holiness tradition in America.  The movement grew in popularity and ultimately spread to England.  Keswick, England became the home of the higher life conventions.  In time, the movement returned to America with great momentum.  “The Higher Life movement has influenced the rise of other theologically conservative movements, the founding of a number of institutions, the growth of foreign missions, and the theological perspective of several denominations.”1

Description of the Movement

          The higher Christian life is an explanation of the means and methods involved in advancing the believer’s progressive sanctification.  The purpose of this paper is to identify the areas where the higher life model of sanctification differs from the scriptural doctrine of sanctification.

          Though not identical, three terms are used synonymously to refer to the movement; “The higher Christian life,” the “Victorious Christian Life,” and “Keswick Teaching.”  In this paper, any of the three terms may be used to refer to the whole body of higher life teaching.

HISTORIC BACKGROUND

          The inception of the higher life movement is often identified with the publication of William Edwin Boardman’s book, The Higher Christian Life (1858).  The book argued that Christ was to be received for sanctification sometime after justification. Continue reading

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Lordship Salvation aka Progressive Sanctification? High fashion, yes, but not for Christians.

jesus is your sanctification

Grant Swart

I needed to jot down just a few more recent thoughts concerning the subject of (progressive) sanctification, as I have seen it gaining in popularity as a subject for discussion in certain circles, particularly I suppose, in the social media. This is additional to my most recent article on the subject at SANCTIFICATION: Why & how can God accept sinners into His Presence?

As a subject, I don’t believe that progressive sanctification should be handled with much kindness. It is a hideous and potentially fatal religious proposition. The highest possible price was paid for it, it belongs to God’s people exclusively, and it should not be allowed to become a plastic accessory to be worn by fashionistas of the commercial free-will religious order.

Free-will, works religion, also known as Arminianism or various forms of synergism, is the highly fashionable religion being practiced by great numbers of churchgoers in these times. Followers of this religious form of worship, under the guise of Christianity, now crowd the pews of the great majority of what were once, Biblical and God-fearing churches.

In these shiny new will-worshipping theatres are man-made pavilions with many steps leading upwards, each step representing a higher level of self-righteousness and perceived holiness on which proud men stand and display their shame before other men, as witness to them worshipping their own efforts and abilities (Col. 2:23).

In order to solicit more support, in the great eagerness of their own driven will, they have named this system of will worship. Some call it “Lordship Salvation”. Even more ostentatiously they might call it “progressive sanctification” and deluded men heap wondrous praise and elevated prestige onto those who put great effort into achieving improved righteousness. These great congregations, having placed themselves under the spiritual governance of the powerful hierarchies and church councils which they have elected for themselves to serve under, often find themselves becoming the victims of their own ill-begotten belief systems when the whip of contrived church discipline inevitably turns on them. Continue reading

Scofield “Bible” (Part 3) – C.I. Scofield: Dispensational Scalawag

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Grant Swart

This is a short follow-on to Parts 1 & 2 Scofield “Bible” – A Handbook for Genocide AND Scofield “Bible” (Part 2) – Re-defining the darkness of fraud, conspiracy and heresy of a brief series I have posted over the past few weeks, which deals with the Scofield Reference “bible”, its author Cyrus Ingerson Scofield, and the massively popular heretical dispensational beliefs it continues to spawn.

Scholarly Bible believing Christians cannot accept a view of Scripture as put forward by the Scofield Reference “bible” (and a God who would have contrived it), and are those who speak out against the spiritual, geo-political, ethnic and religious consequences of such an astonishingly narrow and mistaken world-view as that of Dispensational Pre-millenialism. They also experience with sadness the realization that such enormous energy and devotion have been poured into such a misguided enterprise. More often than not, these “Bereans” would themselves have been introduced to the heretical conspiracies of dispensational pre-millenialism by the worldly church and would have discovered the truth about the kingdom of God and the second coming of the Saviour Jesus Christ only through conscientious and inspired study of Holy Scripture.

While this article describes C.I.Scofield as the scalawag he chose to be, it can be argued that most of the famous dispensationalists world-over and throughout the historic existence of the dispensational heresy, can be regarded as such to a lesser or greater extent, due to their proclaiming such a gross misrepresentation of Scriptural prophecy.  Among these world famous dispensational teachers have been some otherwise truly remarkable pastors and Christians. However, details pertaining to the lives and of the dispensational protagonists are of less significance to the Christian, than the heretical teachings which constitute dispensationalism.

It is not my intention to discuss in this article, all the specifics which constitute the eschatological heresy of Dispensational Pre-millenialism. Continue reading

Scofield “Bible” (Part 2) – Re-defining the darkness of fraud, conspiracy and heresy

Scofield Jesuit

Grant Swart

The life of often referenced dispensationalist Cyrus Ingerson Scofield is characterized by dishonesty, scandal, lies, fraud, adultery, forgery and disgrace. However, I wish to make it abundantly clear once again, that my series of posts of which this article forms a part, should by no means be regarded as an attempt to pass judgement on the private life, sins, criminality, convictions, indiscretions, iniquities, personal shortcomings, lies and fraudulent lifestyle of the man. In this regard let us call to memory the words of the Apostle Paul as we contemplate the content of this series of articles: (Romans 3:20-24) For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it– the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

Scofield may have been all of those sinful things, or he may have been none of them. How many Christians are not guilty of some, if not all of the same sins? Scofield may have been a believer in Jesus Christ, although very little of his life bears testimony to that probability, least of all his Bible notes. However, none of that can change the fact that the reasons for the existence of the heretical teachings held within the Scofield Reference “Bible” were fraudulent and deceptive. The teachings and ideas contained in his notes resulted in the heinous lies which have been instrumental in supporting some of the greatest heresies and filthy atrocities in post reformation Christianity. Whether the wayward lifestyle of the man had much to do with his teachings and expository deficiencies, or not, does not alter the reality that the Scofield Reference “Bible” is a work which re-defines the darkness of the fraud which spawned it’s heresies, conspiracies and deceptive messages. 

**Generally speaking, dispensationalists tend to cherish his teachings without any concern whatsoever for what kind of man Scofield really was. For some reason, his admirers consider it unethical or possibly even contemptible to expose embarrassing little known secrets about the man. Facts should not be buried because they make people feel uncomfortable. Neither C.I. Scofield nor his work are above reproach and considering the impact he has had on Christendom, his life should be examined. The type of person that he really was will have a major influence on the theology that he taught.

As was the case with the previous article by a different author, which I posted regarding the Scofield Reference “Bible” (see https://fortheloveofhistruth.com/2013/08/25/scofield-bible-a-handbook-for-genocide/), I do not necessarily endorse or subscribe to all of the thoughts and work of the author of this attached article. So, I ask those opposed to this work, to please refrain from playing the tired “guilty by association” card in these instances, these matters have been considered. However, differences which may exist are not sufficient reason for me not to regard what follows, as a thorough and honest article aimed at exposing the filthy theology which the Scofield Reference “Bible” has spawned, and the devastating results it has had within the church and around the world. For those reasons, I am grateful to the author/s concerned. Continue reading

“Backbiters”

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“Backbiters”

Romans 1:28-32

            I cannot imagine any crime against another person which is more cowardly, despicable, and inexcusable than slander and gossip – backbiting. While such behavior is common and expected among the reprobate, there is no place for it in the kingdom of God.

Many who look down their noses with scorn upon fornicators, adulterers, and whoremongers, are guilty of this hideous offense. They think nothing of slandering another, attempting to murder his character, indeed, they seize every opportunity to do so. If Romans 1:28-32 means anything, it means that such people do not know God. Their character is the character of the reprobate. Backbiting men and women are proud, envious, little rebels, people who cannot be trusted in any area of life.

They are the pawns of Satan, used to disrupt the peace of God’s church and kingdom. They always pretend to have a just cause. They always pretend that they have been offended, slighted, overlooked, or abused by the one slandered. Backbiters are always whiners. Continue reading

When God’s Providence And Security Are Just Not Enough

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ARMINIANISM wrests Scripture to teach that it is possible for the true believer to fall from the grace of salvation (Gal. 5:4); and that each believer is provided with sufficient ability to persevere and preserve himself, if only he will: (“And ye will not come to Me, that ye might have life.” John 5:40). It all depends on the choice of man’s will, whether he will persevere or not. (This denies everything thus far so irrefutably declared!) The error continues: Continue reading

The First Twelve Preachers

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The First Twelve Preachers

“And he goeth up into a mountain, and calleth unto him whom he would: and they came unto him. And he ordained twelve, that they should be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach, And to have power to heal sicknesses, and to cast out devils: And Simon he surnamed Peter; And James the son of Zebedee, and John the brother of James; and he surnamed them Boanerges, which is, The sons of thunder: And Andrew, and Philip, and Bartholomew, and Matthew, and Thomas, and James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus, and Simon the Canaanite, And Judas Iscariot, which also betrayed him: and they went into an house. And the multitude cometh together again, so that they could not so much as eat bread. And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him: for they said, He is beside himself.” (Mark 3:13-21)

Here the Holy Spirit describes the calling of the twelve Apostles by our Lord Jesus Christ. This is an event, which ought to always be remembered and studied with deep gratitude. No twelve men in history have been so important as these twelve. None have done so much good. None have been of such benefit to us. J.C. Ryle wrote…

“What a vast amount of benefit these few men have conferred upon the world! The names of a few Jewish fishermen are known and lived by millions all over the globe, while the names of many kings and rich men are lost and forgotten.”

These apostles were a special order of men. The apostolic office was in existence for only a very brief period of time, during which the canon of Holy Scripture was completed. They had distinct gifts of healing, tongues, and inspiration, which no one has possessed since the Apostolic Era. They were men specifically chosen, gifted, and ordained by our Lord Jesus Christ to preach the gospel during the earliest days of Christianity and to write the New Testament, explaining by divine inspiration the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ. They had no successors. When they died, their office died. And when the Apostles died, all the gifts and signs accompanying apostleship died as well.

Twelve Men Continue reading