Sanctification – More than Behavior Modification

by Mike Ratliff

I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification. (Romans 6:19 ESV)

Sanctification: “The work of God’s free grace, whereby we are renewed in the whole man after the image of God, and are enabled more and more to die unto sin, and live unto righteousness.” – The Westminster Shorter Catechism (Q.35)

This post came about from a discussion among our discernment group today about this article/video by John Piper. My initial response went something like, “isn’t what Piper and Warren and these guys doing is substituting Transformational stuff for Biblical Sanctification. In other words, we become more and more self-able, self-sufficient instead of more and more humble and dependent upon the grace of God, which is what Christian maturity is all about.” From that I began working out how to build this post around contrasting real, Biblical Sanctification with this manmade, self-made stuff that Rick Warren and the behavior modification gurus that follow him teach. What I came up with is that you should go to John Piper’s link and watch his video and/or read the post there then read the technical stuff below that I have condensed from a Theology manual. Then at the end, I will give you three links to articles I posted back in September on Sanctification. I think you will see that Biblical Sanctification is quite different than what these people are teaching.  Continue reading