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Possessed by God: A New Testament theology of sanctification and holiness (New Studies in Biblical Theology) Paperback – June 28, 2001

4.7 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Peterson's treatment is far from hackneyed or trivial. His aim is to show that much of the New Testament treatment of sanctification stresses what used to be called 'positional sanctification' or the like--and that much godly living, Christian assurance, stable faith and Christian maturity stem from a firm grasp of what the Bible says in this regard." (D. A. Carson, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (Deerfield, Illinois))

About the Author

David Peterson was senior research fellow and lecturer in New Testament at Moore Theological College, Sydney, where he still teaches part time. He served as principal of Oak Hill College, London, from 1996 to 2007. His books include Engaging with God, Possessed by God (both IVP) and Hebrews and Perfection (Cambridge University Press).
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Product Details

  • Series: New Studies in Biblical Theology (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 191 pages
  • Publisher: IVP Academic (June 28, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0830826017
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830826018
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #344,741 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Mark Henry Baker on February 11, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was paradigm shifting for me. Even though I had often observed that the Bible uses "sanctified" in the past tense I did not know that this is the way it is used the majority of the time in the Bible. Our sanctification is so much more than just our maturation in Christ--there is a huge part of it that has already been accomplished for us at the cross--it is what makes us holy and able to be called "saints." This reality of our new identity in Christ then provides the motivation for holy living, which is also a crucial part of sanctification. This book is a clear call for us to start learning and speaking about sanctification in the way that the Bible actually uses the word--if any of this interests you, this book is a must read!
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Format: Paperback
This book is an excellent treatment of the New Testament material on sanctification and I used it as one of the texts for a unit I taught at Booth College on "The Doctrine of Sanctification: Biblical Perspectives." However, I do feel quite ambivalent about its use in that context. While it deals admirably with all of the key texts on sanctification, providing good exegetical studies along the way, it is marred by an apparent need to criticise (and often unfairly) those in the Wesleyan theological tradition. The author will often portray Wesleyans as holding to sinless perfectionism overlooking the nuances of perfectionist teaching within the tradition. Ironically his own findings in discussing certain passages are sometimes fully in line with Wesleyan views. The book is also a critique of the author's own Reformed tradition, at least its Puritan heritage which has placed great stress on holiness as a mark of the elect. The characteristic Puritan stress on "progressive sanctification" (mortification and vivification) the author sees as unhelpful because it places, he says, an unhelpful burden on believers and obscures the completed work of Christ in their lives. Since the New Testament is primarily concerned with the positional holiness of believers we should place the stress on the instantaneousness of sanctification not its progressive features. Christ's death secures believers as the holy ones of God, set apart as belonging to him. That is a completed action that cannot be taken away from or added to. That is all good so far as it goes but Peterson does not do justice to the frequently found imperatives within the New Testament to "perfect holiness in the fear of God," to "live a life worthy of the calling you have received," etc. Believers are "saints" yes, but saints "called to be holy.Read more ›
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I am involved in a discipleship youth group and the idea of studying Sanctification was brought up as something we should study/teach for the summer instead of starting an other book of the bible. So, all the leaders and some of the youth bought this book thinking it was going to be just a "good book to read" to get an understanding of sanctification, but it has turned out to be a huge eye opener, to see the connections between old testament teachings and promises and the finished work of Christ in the new testament, and how we are to live/conduct ourselves in/through Christ's once for all atonement for sin, and how we are given a right standing before a Holy and Amazing God despite our sinful nature.
Possessed by God has loads of references to all sorts of Bible passages (and they are not taken out of context).
I highly recommend this to everyone, it is a very deep book and will take you along time to get through but is so worth the time and effort.
If you are someone who just likes reading books by Christian authors and you don't spend much time in the Bible this book will force you to read the bible and study it.
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very good and sound study of sanctification a must read. Theologically sound and Biblically Rich and in-depth. I recommend it.
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