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Michael Allen (Author) , Scott R. Swain (General Editor)
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Sanctification—the act or process of becoming holy—is one of the gifts of the gospel of Jesus Christ, but it's often misunderstood by the modern church. Sanctification offers a Christ-centered and clear account of the doctrine by viewing it within its wider biblical and historical context.

Churches too often allow their definitions of holiness to be prompted by existential goals or the social mores of the Christian community. It's not surprising, then, that many view holiness as accidental or expendable, even as a legalistic posture opposed to the freedom of the gospel and separate from the gift of grace.

Sanctification (part of the New Studies in Dogmatics series), defines holiness in theological terms by:

  • Providing a framework by discussing the core Christian doctrines associated with it, such as the character of God, the nature of creation, and the covenantal shape of life with God.
  • Considering the ways in which the gospel of Jesus not only prompts us to holy action but provides holiness as one of its blessings.
  • Attending to the ways in which the gift of sanctification relates to human means, so that we can appreciate its connection to human nature, responsibility, and the pedagogy of exemplars and of law.


New Studies in Dogmatics seeks to retrieve the riches of Christian doctrine for the sake of contemporary theological renewal. Following in the tradition of G. C. Berkouwer's Studies in Dogmatics, this series provides thoughtful, concise, and readable treatments of major theological topics, expressing the biblical, creedal, and confessional shape of Christian doctrine for a contemporary evangelical audience.

The editors and contributors share a common conviction that the way forward in constructive systematic theology lies in building upon the foundations laid in the church's historic understanding of the Word of God as professed in its creeds, councils, and confessions, and by its most trusted teachers.

About the Author

Michael Allen (PhD, Wheaton College) is the John Dyer Trimble Professor of Systematic Theology and Academic Dean at Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando, FL.


Here is learned and extensive dogmatic exposition in the grand oldEuropean academic style. Weaving together both biblical and systematictheological perspectives, Professor Michael Allen leads us, his students,in a genuine theological discussion rooted in wide reading and maturereflection. Sanctification thus points us beyond a bare textbook-styleaccumulation of information to the higher goal of a genuine knowledgeof God and transformation into the image of Christ. A veryworthy addition to what already promises to be an impressive series. -- Sinclair B. Ferguson, Chancellor’s Professor of Systematic Theology, Reformed Theological Seminary

In Sanctification, Michael Allen presents a lucid dogmatic portrait ofthe glorious mystery of new life in Christ. Allen's book offers a feastfor readers to feed upon this truth. Framed in conversation with thebest of contemporary scholarship, Allen brings together scripturalexegesis, patristic and Protestant commentary, and wide-rangingtheological exposition. Sanctification is a model of biblical, Reformedcatholicity, which both breaks new ground and retrieves insightsfrom the past. Highly recommended for students, scholars, and otherswho hunger for a theological account of sanctification in Christ! -- J. Todd Billings, Gordon H. Girod Research Professor of Reformed Theology, Western Theological Seminary

Michael Allen believes that the gospel is large enough to cover notonly the guilt but the dominion of sin. This volume gives furtherevidence of the author's reliability as a faithful steward of the mysteriesof God. Learn, mark and inwardly digest this rich feast. -- Michael Horton, J. Gresham Machen Professor of Systematic Theology and Apologetics Westminster Seminary California

Holiness is good news, Allen reminds us, for sanctification is allabout God sharing his own holiness with us in Christ. As he unpacksthis gospel of holiness, Allen presents a marvelous 'minor dogmatics,'ranging through a variety of doctrines, and grounding our holinessin the one and only place where it must originate--theeternalbeing of God himself. Steeped within Reformed catholicity, Allen'sbiblical retrieval draws from a wide range of sources: patristic, medieval,and modern. The result is an irenic and deeply thoughtful book. -- Hans Boersma, J. I. Packer Professor of Theology, Regent College

Allen delivers a work of classical Reformed theology. He irenicallydifferentiates the Reformed position on sanctification from someLutheran positions, through careful biblical exegesis and retrieval ofCalvin, Augustine, Berkouwer, and others. From a more traditionallyReformed perspective, Allen here inherits the mantle of JohnWebster. As a Catholic, I am deeply grateful for Michael Allen'svision, with the ecumenical conjunctions that it reveals. -- Matthew Levering, James N. and Mary D. Perry Jr. Chair of Theology, Mundelein Seminary

One of the great strengths of Michael Allen's work is that he resiststhe temptation of treating sanctification in isolation; instead, he callsattention to how this vital doctrine draws upon and informs a multitudeof other doctrines. Consequently, Allen provides a rich anddistinctive account of holiness that certainly deserves our attentionand thanks. -- Kelly Kapic, Professor of Theological Studies, Covenant College

  • Product Details
  • Page Count: 304
  • Format: Softcover
  • ISBN: 9780310491460
  • Release: October 24, 2017
Other Titles in the New Studies in Dogmatics
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Justification, Volume 2
Michael Horton
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Justification, Volume 1
Michael Horton
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Michael Allen
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The Triune God
Fred Sanders
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The Holy Spirit
Christopher R. J. Holmes
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Lord Jesus Christ
Daniel Treier
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