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Bible Dictionaries

Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary


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If I apprehend right, those titles are used in Scripture with different meanings. Thus when spoken of angels, or beings of higher intellect than man, there is a peculiar degree of holiness annexed to the word saint in those instances. Thus Moses, describing the descent of the Lord upon mount Sinai, saith, "He came with ten thousands of saints." (Deuteronomy 33:2) But when the same word is made use of in application to men, whether the apostles and first servants in the church, or ordinary believers, I apprehend it means no more than sinners regenerated, and made saints in Christ Jesus. Thus Paul the apostle, addressing his first Epistle to the Corinthians, useth these remarkable words—"Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called robe saints." (1 Corinthians 1:2) I do not presume to point out the difference,—I only state it as it is. Probably there is no real difference in sanctity, because all holiness in every creature can be but a derived holiness. The high and Holy One who inhabiteth eternity, strictly and properly speaking, is the only Holy One. Every thing, therefore, of holiness is just so far so, and no more, as hath been received from him. And with respect to the holiness of men or angels it is possible, yea more than possible, even highly probable, that when a sinner is washed from all his sins in Christ's blood, he is holier than an angel which never sinned; and eminently on this account—the holiness of the sinner in his renewed nature is the holiness of God our Saviour, from a life received from Jesus and union with Jesus: whereas the holiness of the angel is but the holiness of the creature, a created holiness, and not derived from any life-union with Christ. If this be true, let the reader contemplate, if he can, the personal glory of the Lord Jesus Christ in this holiness of his nature, and his redeemed in him, Such honour have all his saints! And when he hath duly pondered this most blessed of all subjects, let him add this to it, namely, that it is an holiness that never can be lost, sullied, or lessened."Such an High Priest (saith Paul) became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens? (Hebrews 7:26) As the holiness of Christ in his human nature, deriving every thing of sanctity as it must from the union with the GODHEAD, gives a completeness both of durableness and excellency to that sanctity, so must it ensure the same in all his members. The holy angels are said by JEHOVAH (Job 4:18) to have no trust put in them, yea,"he chargeth them with folly, or weakness—that is, with a possibility of falling. For though they are free from sin, yet not secure from the possibility of sinning. Angels have fallen, and therefore angels may fall. But believers united to Jesus are everlastingly secure in him. He saith himself, "Because I live ye shall live also." (John 14:19) What an unspeakable felicity this to the church of God in Christ Jesus called to be saints!

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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography Information
Hawker, Robert D.D. Entry for 'Saints'. Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance and Dictionary. London. 1828.

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