I really appreciate Oswald Chambers. He had a sharp mind. I don’t know how many times I’ve read My Utmost for His Highest and it’s still my first choice for a daily devo.
Through Chambers, God has often times corrected my theology (good theology, by the way, is crucial to a vibrant and living devotional life. If we’re in a funk, it is often times because our theology needs adjusting. More on this in another post). Being from the holiness tradition, I too often fell into the trap of thinking that salvation was all about me and my holiness (or deliverance from my sin crisis). I got thinking that the goal of salvation was for me to be like God (sanctification). This is certainly one of the primary things that happens in the salvation process, but I don’t believe it is the central pillar of salvation.
N.T. Wright said it well when he said, “The theological equivalent of supposing that the sun goes around the earth is the belief that the whole Christian truth is all about me and my salvation.” He goes on to say, “But we are not the enter of the universe. God is not circling around us. We are circling around him . . . God made humans for a purpose: not simple for themselves, not simply so that they could be in relationship with him, but so that through them, as his image-bearers, he could bring his wise, glad, fruitful order to the world” (Wright, Justification, 23).
To move beyond this, one of the purposes of salvation is to get us to stop thinking that it’s all about me. If this is still the center of our thinking after grace, we’ve got a long way to go. Grace is to move us beyond ourselves—grace is to move us into broken bread and poured-out wine to others.
If our individual salvation is important, however, what role does it play? How can we properly think about our walk with Jesus in a way that goes beyond the sun circling around me and my salvation experience?
What is life after sanctification?
Here’s where Chambers comes in with this, “After sanctification it is difficult to state what your aim in life is, because God has taken you up into his purpose by the Holy Ghost. He is using you now for his purposes throughout the world as He used His son for the purpose of our salvation.”
He also says, “This call has nothing to do with personal sanctification, but with being made broken bread and poured-out wine.”
There is life after sanctification, and that life is not about us, it’s about Him.