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Keep On Keeping On 继续坚持

Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. – Philippians 2:12-13

Ten of us gathered in the classroom, relieved to get some reprieve from our final assignments. With graduation looming in two months, we were gathered with one purpose: to decide on a theme for our graduation, a theme that described our common experience at seminary, one that would spur us on as we minister after graduation. Various themes were suggested but eventually one won the hearts of the committee members that day. “Keep on keeping on.” We had to keep on keeping on, persevering through mountains of readings and confluences of deadlines to graduate. We have to keep on keeping on, relying on God’s grace as we minister to others. We have to keep on keeping, living our lives in the perfecting grace of God.

The fourth unique aspect of Christian perfection is that

[It] is not a static, one-time experience… [it] maintains dynamism in Christian experience… There is no room for relying on yesterday’s experience, no matter how significant it was… Christian perfection points to a consummation. Life is going somewhere. Our perfection is not absolute in this life, but we believe there will come a day when it will be. We are on the way, and that way ends in God’s house!103

As Methodists, we are called to keep on keeping on, until we are absolutely perfected in the presence of our loving God.

这样看来,我亲爱的弟兄,你们既是常顺服的,不但我在你们那里,就是我如今不在你们那里,更是顺服的,就当恐惧战兢做成你们得救的工夫,因为你们立志行事都是上帝在你们心里运行,为要成就他的美意。 《腓立比书》2:12-13

我们十个人聚集在教室里,大家都暂且放下了功课。两个月后即将毕业,我们为一个目的聚集在一起:决定我们毕业的主题。这是一个描述我们在神学院的共同经历的主题,毕业后会激励我们的事工。当天提出了各种主题,但最终赢得了委员会成员的心的是:继续坚持。 我们必须继续坚持下去,坚持通过山量阅读直至毕业的最后日期。我们必须继续坚持,一直依靠上帝的恩典服事他人。我们必须继续坚持,继续活出在上帝完全恩典中的生命。 基督徒完全的第四个独特方面是:这不是一个静止的,一次性的经验......它保持了基督徒充满活力的经历......无论它有多重要,都没有依靠昨天的经验的余地......基督徒的完全指向圆满。生活正朝向未知的领域。我们的完全当然不在此生,但我们相信那一天终必到来。我们正走在路上,朝向上帝的家! 作为卫理公会信徒,我们被呼召继续坚持下去,直到我们在慈爱的上帝面前全然完全。




How would your church be different if everyone believed and sought to “live into Wesley’s understanding of entire sanctification or Christian perfection?”104

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