The word meditation is an appropriate word to wrap-up this paper. Meditation requires the use of the mind and requires hard work if a believer desires progress in sanctification. I like what Jerry Bridges says concerning the use of meditation, which requires the use of our minds.
But if we are to pursue holiness with discipline, we must do more than hear, read, study, or memorize Scripture. We must meditate on it for our practical daily lives.”
Joshua 1:8 stresses the serious call to meditation. Joshua 1:8 says,
This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success.”
Not only did Joshua stressed it, but also the psalmist exerted efforts upon meditation because he knew that it provides joy (Psalm 1:2) and protection against sin (Psalm 119: 15; 119:26).
Not only is meditation and knowledge of God’s Word critical to practical daily living, but the use of the mind in meditation and the desire for God’s knowledge via His Word, helps one defend the faith against ungodly assaults against the Christian faith. The mind set-upon absolute truth wholeheartedly has true knowledge of God, while the non-believer does not. Pastor Greg Bahnsen puts it in this manner,
We may safely conclude that if God is what we say he is, namely a being who exists necessarily as a self-complete system of coherence, and we exist at all as self-conscious beings, we must have the true knowledge of him. (We are not now speaking of the question of sin. That is an ethical and not a metaphysical question. Our metaphysical dependence upon God has not been wiped-out by sin.) All this we express theologically when we say that man is created in God’s image. This makes man like God and assures true knowledge of God. We are known of him and therefore we know him and know that we know him. God is light and therefore we have light.
I find what Pastor Bahnsen said is comforting because believers have knowledge of God. And because we have knowledge of God, we know Him. And because we know Him, let us use our minds in the area of sanctification. And since we have the knowledge of God and the mind of God (not that we know everything), we need to study the doctrine of sanctification and the role of the mind in sanctification with passion and tenacity because God desires you to grow and excel more and more (1 Thess. 4:10).
Stay tune for the next installment. I will try to add an appendix. The appendix will include a message I did on Romans 6:1-14.
Abbott-Smith, George. A Manual Greek Lexicon of the New Testament. 3d ed. Edinburgh, England: T. & T. Clark, 1950.
Achtemeier, Paul J. Harper & Row and Society of Biblical Literature, Harper’s Bible Dictionary, 1st ed. San Francisco: Harper & Row, 1985.
Amatuccio, Nicholas John. “The Role of the Mind in Christian Sanctification According to Romans 6:1-14.” Th.M. Thesis, The Master’s Seminary, 2006.
Bahnsen, Greg L. Van Til’s Apologetic: Readings. Phillipsburg: P & R Publishing, 1998.
Bridges, Jerry. The Pursuit of Holiness. Colorado Springs: Navpress, 1978.
Cranfield, C.E.B. The Epistle to the Romans. 2 vols. A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Epistle to the Romans. Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1975.
Dana, H.E., and Julius R. Mantey. A Manual Grammar of the Greek New Testament. New York: Macmillan, 1927.
Grudem, Wayne A. 1994. Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine. Leicester: Inter-Varsity Press, 1994.
Hoekema, Anthony A. “The Reformed View.” Five Views on Sanctification. Edited by Stanley N. Gundry. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1987.
J. Landrum, Adam “Can the Νοῦς [nous] Set You Loose? the Role of the Mind in Sanctification.” bible.org. http://bible.org/article/can-%CE%BD%CE%BF%E1%BF%A6%CF%82-nous-set-you-loose-role-mind-sanctification (accessed December 4, 2012).
Lesta, Kenneth Arnold. “The Nature of Sanctification in the New Testament.” D.Min. Dessertataion, Bob Jones University, 1979.
MacArthur, John F. The Vanishing Conscience. Dallas: Word Publishing, 1995.
––––––. Romans 1-8. The MacArthur New Testament Commentary. Chicago: Moody Press, 1991.
Mccomiskey, Thomas E. “1990 קָדַשׁ” In Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament, ed. R. Laird Harris, Gleason L. Archer, Jr. and Bruce K. Waltke, electronic ed. Chicago: Moody Press, 1999.
Moo, Douglas J. The Epistle to the Romans. The New International Commentary of the New Testament. Edited by, Ned B. Stonehouse, F.F. Bruce, and Gordon Fee. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1996.
Morris, Leon. The Epistle to the Romans. The Pillar New Testament Commentary. Edited by D.A. Carson. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1988.
Pink, Arthur W. The Doctrine of Sanctification. Swengel: Bible Truth Depot, 1955.
Reymond, Robert L. A New Systematic Theology of the Christian. 2nd ed. Nashville, Tennessee: Thomas Nelson, 1998.
Ryle, J. C. Holiness. Old Tappan, N.J.: Revell Company, 1970.
Schreiner, Thomas R. Romans. Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. Edited by Moises Silva. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 1998.
Vlach, Michael A. “TH705 Theology III: Man, Sin, and Salvation.” Unpublished syllabus. The Master’s Seminary, 2012.
Vol. 4, Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, ed. Gerhard Kittel, Geoffrey W. Bromiley and Gerhard Friedrich, electronic ed. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1964.
Welch, Edward T. When People Are Big and God is Small: Overcoming Peer Pressure, Codependency, and the Fear of Man. Phillipsburg: P & R Publishing, 1997.
White, Bob. “BI701 Ordinattion Preparation.” Unpublished syllabus. The Master’s Seminary, 2011.