What Does “Being Sanctified” Mean In Hebrews 10:14?, by David Bishop

Hebrews 10:9-10— He sets aside the first to establish the second. And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

Hebrews 10:14— For by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being sanctified.

Many Calvinists teach that “being sanctified” in verse 14 refers to progressive sanctification. In other words, that each justified elect is in the process of being sanctified. The context does not allow this however. Verses 9 and 10 clearly state that the elect HAVE BEEN MADE HOLY through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ ONCE FOR ALL.

In Hebrews 10:10-14 sanctification is a legal state. Either we are holy or not holy before God; either we have access to God or do we do not. This legal state of holiness and sanctification is not true for all the elect already at the exactly the same time. Another way to say this is to say the elect are not all converted at the same time. Once a member of the elect is converted though, he remains converted for life.

There are other passages in the Bible that also teach a change of state in time. Romans 8:30 : “And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.”

Does this mean every one of the elect, even those who haven’t been born yet have been called, justified and glorified? No, it does not. But once God does call, justify and glorify His elect, it is true they remain justified and glorified.

There is another kind of sanctification which is not a legal state of holy access by the blood to the Holy presence of Holy God. II Thess 2:13 also teaches “sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth” Acts 26:18 explains that Paul is sent to the Gentiles “to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.”

But the “being sanctified” of Hebrews 10:14 is NOT the work of the Spirit in us, either at conversion or after conversion. The work of the Spirit sanctifying is a result of legal sanctification by the blood.

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