Apostolic Faith – Vol. 50 No 4
July - Aug., 1957

The Sin Principle Destroyed

Raymond C. Crawford

The problem of sin is solved by the Blood of Jesus Chris

THE Bible teaches that sin is of a two-fold nature: the outward transgression and the inward principle. The outward sins are sometimes expressed by the word “sins,” while the sin principle is referred to in the singular as “sin.”

David prayed:

Have mercy upon me, O God . . .  blot out my transgressions.

“Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin” (Psalm 51:1, 2).

This “sin” principle is what David had reference to when he prayed, “I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.” He referred to it as being an inheritance, born within the human nature. It was not so originally but was contracted in the Garden of Eden when Adam transgressed God’s commandment. That moment he went out from under the dominion of God and came under the dominion of Satan. “To whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey” (Romans 6:16).

When Adam transgressed God’s law, there was a definite inward change; his nature became defiled. Instead of that purity and innocence with which he was created, the nature of sin entered in and dwelt in his heart. That nature was passed on to Adam’s posterity, from one generation to another up to the present time. There is no earthly remedy for man’s sinful nature, which is sometimes called “the carnal nature,” “the body of sin,” “the works of the flesh,” “the old man.” Different terms are applied to this sinful nature – but all are one and the same thing.

Two-Fold Remedy

The world has always tried to veneer this sinful nature. They have tried every manner of means to overcome this condition; but in spite of all their efforts, man has become worse and worse. How we thank God that he has a remedy! God’s remedy is a two-fold remedy, just as the nature of sin is two-fold.

The first work of grace is the remedy which takes care of the actual sins; and the second work of grace eradicates the sin principle (1 John 1:9). The terms in the Scriptures such as pardon, forgiveness, and blotting out refer to justification, the first work of grace. The terms purging, cleansing, purifying, sanctifying refers to sanctification, which takes care of the sinful nature within.

While man is not responsible for the inheritance of his sinful nature, he is responsible for not applying the remedy which God provides. If one sees a way out of this sinful state in which he is born, and deliberately chooses to remain in it, who is responsible? The one who refuses to apply God’s Remedy.

God’s Remedy is provided through the Blood of Jesus. In the 53rd chapter of Isaiah we read:

He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities.”

“Transgressions,” “iniquities” – the outward form of sin—are written in plural. The Atonement provides for “justification”; but the Atonement also provides for sanctification, as indicated in Hebrews 13:12.

Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate.”

Sanctification brings about the complete eradication of the sinful nature. What a marvelous provision, a way by which man can be delivered from the degenerate nature that impels him downward, a degenerate condition that has caused all the woes and crimes and iniquity with which this world is burdened today!

In 1 Peter 2:24, we read that Jesus “bare our sins in His own body on the tree.” That shows us the provisions made for justification. Throughout the Bible we find the provisions which God has made, running parallel, each separate and distinct. In the Old Testament are various types of the two works of grace to be wrought out in the heart.

Circumcision – A Type

Just as circumcision was a mark given to Israel that designated them as God’s people and separated them from all other nations (Genesis 17:10), so holiness is the mark that separates God’s people from all others, and by which they are known to be the people of God.  Therefore, this rite of circumcision typifies the operation of God upon the heart.

That sanctification is subsequent to justification is plainly taught in the Scriptures. Before a child could be circumcised, he first had to be born. So a child of God has to be born again before he can be sanctified. He is first born into the Kingdom, and then by a second, definite work, he is purified, sanctified, and made holy. Also in Colossians 2:10, 11, we read:

And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:

“In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of sins of the flesh [that carnal nature within] by the circumcision of Christ.”

What Is Sanctification?

To be sanctified means to be made holy, to be pure in heart. God said unto Abraham:

Walk before me, and be thou perfect” (Genesis 17:1).

Jesus said unto His disciples:

“Be ye therefore perfect, even as your father which is in heaven is perfect” (Mathew 5:48).

We have these exhortations to holiness all through the Scriptures. Yet, in spite of all these teaching in the Bible on holiness, or sanctification, there has, perhaps, been no doctrine in all God’s Word more attacked and set at naught and denied. John Wesley was dragged through the street by his hair for standing for this doctrine which is the very hub of the Christian experience.

Through this experience of sanctification, the image of God, which was lost in the fall of man in the Garden of Eden, is restored within man. It is not to be wondered, therefore, that the devil fights it. There is a reproach to true holiness. We read about that reproach in Hebrews 13:13.

“Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach.”

Sanctification brings us into a deeper knowledge of the will of God.

“ I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12: 1,2).

There is a close connection between sanctification and the will of God. It becomes easier to obey God’s commandments when the carnal nature is completely destroyed.

Love of God Perfected

The keeping of the first commandment is another effect of sanctification.

“The LORD thy God will circumcise thine heart, . . . to love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live” (Deuteronomy 30:6).

What a glorious life to live when the carnal nature has been removed and God’s love fills the heart and life! The love of God comes into the heart at justification; but it comes in, in a much greater degree, at sanctification, and in a constantly increasing degree as one continues to walk in the light of God’s Word and grow in the grace of the Lord. Love for God and our fellow man is incomplete until we are sanctified. Love is perfected through this work of sanctification. The soul who will earnestly seek for this divine love will have a work wrought out in his life that will enable him to love in the manner God demands a Christian to love: to love God with all his heart, soul, mind, and strength; and to love his neighbor as himself.

This experience is provided for anyone who will consecrate his life to God – consecrate deeper than words could tell. The one who pays the price God demands for such a glorious experience can have the sin principle in his life destroyed and find perfect peace in his heart.