Ryle: Pastoral Reflections on Sanctification

What should we do with this teaching on sanctification? How does it matter for the average Christian? Ryle’s thoughts:

  1. For one thing, let us awake to a sense of the perilous state of many professing Christians.
  2. For another thing, let us make sure work of our own condition, and never rest till we feel and know that we are “sanctified” ourselves.
  3. For another thing, if we would be sanctified, our course is clear and plain—we must begin with Christ.
  4. For another thing, if we would grow in holiness and become more sanctified, we must continually go on as we began, and be ever making fresh applications to Christ.
  5. For another thing, let us not expect too much from our own hearts here below.
  6. Finally, let us never be ashamed of making much of sanctification, and contending for a high standard of holiness. (pg. 39-40)

Personally, I think all six of these points need more emphasis today, even the ones that seem contradictory like 2 and 5. We need more passion for holiness, more effort toward holiness, and more of a realization that the growth is slow, spotty, and at times downright disappointing. But in Christ, we can grow into the person he has already reckoned us to be.