Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Everyone Justified by Faith Has the Unction and the Anointing

When you receive Jesus Christ, you have "an unction from the Holy One" (1 John 2:20).  Every truly saved person also has "the anointing" mentioned in 1 John 2:27.  These are not blessings received of God some time after justification by faith, that is, second blessings, that might bring someone to greater spiritual power.

"Unction" and "anointing" translate the Greek word chrisma, which is found only three times in the New Testament, all three in 1 John 2:20 and 27, the above two verses.  A word that is related is christos, translated "Christ," which is "the anointed one."  True followers of the Christ are christianous, Christians.

The point of 1 John is that someone who has received the Holy Spirit, and that is the unction or the anointing, will continue to abide in Christ. He won't depart into damning doctrine.  He won't deny that Jesus is the Christ, won't deny the Son, and won't be deceived by an antichrist.  True believers will pass a doctrinal test.

The indwelling Holy Spirit manifests Himself in the life of a believer by the believer holding to true doctrine concerning Jesus Christ.  He won't leave that.  He doesn't need a second blessing to get up to speed on the doctrine foundational to his salvation.  He is already there.  He already knows those things.  He has already been taught those things.  He doesn't need someone to teach them to him.

Unction and anointing are not higher planes of spiritual existence.  They are not special kinds of dedication and unique empowerment or enabling by God.  They are the normal existence of every genuine Christian.  This is why someone will not eject from the Christian faith, because he will be kept by the Spirit of God, who indwells him.  Someone who does not believe the true doctrine distinguishes himself as having never been saved in the first place and as someone who does not have the unction or the anointing.

Recently here, Thomas Ross suggested some materials on sanctification and asked for other good writing on that subject.  Someone said that John R. Rice had written well on sanctification.  John R. Rice did not take a biblical view of sanctification.  He preached second blessing or keswick theology.  That came to mind immediately when the individual commented about Rice and sanctification.  I remembered a long time ago reading The Fulness of the Spirit by Rice, a book he had written about sanctification that clashes with what Thomas Ross had suggested.

I was reminded of the Rice view of sanctification when I saw the latest edition of The Sword of the Lord (November 3, 2017) and the article published by Rice, entitled, "Anointed with Fresh Oil."  He said, "'Anointing' is a sign of the gift of the Holy Ghost or special anointing with Holy Spirit power.  He wrote that the "anointing" was "an obvious picture of an enduement of power."  Rice said "that would be a good thing for a Christian to claim and pray for."

Rice teaches in his article that the apostles had received the Holy Spirit in John 20, when Jesus said, "Receive ye the Holy Ghost," but that they were anointed with fresh oil on the Day of Pentecost, "a new anointing."  He ends the article by writing, "Will you pray for a fresh anointing for yourself and for me?  Will you pray for a fresh anointing for yourself and for the rest of us?"

Someone who receives Jesus Christ also receives the Holy Spirit, who indwells him the rest of his life and can never be lost for the believer.  The anointing or the unction manifests itself in continuing in the right doctrine.  The Holy Spirit keeps believers in the truth, so that they cannot apostatize, no matter what false doctrine a false teacher brings.  If someone does turn from the faith, 1 John 2:19 and 3:6 say he was never saved in the first place.  No one needs to pray for that anointing.  He cannot lose it.

1 comment:

Bill Hardecker said...

Titus 3:5-6 "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; (v.6) Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;" When Did God "shed on us" the Holy Ghost? At salvation (in or during regeneration, and renewing). How much of the Holy Ghost did God bestow, pour out, "shed on us?" answer: in abundance or "abundantly" meaning copiously or richly. We should believe that. On what basis do we have this rich blessing? Answer: "through Jesus Christ our Saviour." So what does it say about the sacrifice of Jesus if we start creating categories of Christians who are "anointed" and not "anointed" and/or needing more "anointing"? No thank you. The Biblical idea is that all believers, even the most feeble ones, all, have the Holy Ghost in abundance. They have the anointing of 1 Jn. 2:27. And they all owe it to the finished work of Jesus. Rice is much more influenced by Charismatic/Pentecostal/Keswick/Holiness/Methodist/Quaker movement than many would care to admit. But if error isn't exposed and corrected it will stop until it destroys truth.