Consecration -- By: William H. Bates

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 062:247 (Jul 1905)
Article: Consecration
Author: William H. Bates


Rev. William H. Bates

With the organization of the Young People’s Society of Christian Endeavor, the Epworth League, the Baptist Young People’s Union, the Westminster League, etc., with their accompanying Consecration Meetings, the subject of Consecration has come to have a popular prominence and importance that it never had before.

While not a little has been spoken and written upon it, it, nevertheless, does not seem to stand in the clear-cut outline, nor to have the inward lucidity and intelligibleness, which are desirable. The attempt is here made to present a clear and complete view of it as it lies in the entire Scriptures.

A Surprise

A surprise greets us at the outset, in finding that there is almost nothing explicit upon the subject in the New Testament!

The word “consecrate” is used there but twice.

Once it is the translation of the Greek word ὲγκαίνιζω, egkainizo, which is also used but twice: once translated by the word “dedicated” (Heb. 9:28: “Whereupon neither the first testament was dedicated without blood”); and the other time translated “consecrated” (Heb. 10:20: “A new and living way consecrated for us”). And here it might just as well be rendered “dedicated,” as the Revision has it, so far as signification is concerned.

The second time it is used, it is the translation of the Greek word τελειόω, teleioo. This Greek word is used twenty-four times. Seventeen times it is translated “to perfect,” four times “to finish,” twice “to fulfill,” and once “to consecrate” “(Heb. 7:28: “The Son who is consecrated forevermore”). Here the margin and the Revision give it “perfected,” the more accurate rendering of the two.

Very little help, therefore, to an understanding of the Bible idea of Consecration will we get from the New Testament.

An Old Testament Doctrine

We must look to the Old Testament, for there the idea had its origin and unfolding. It belongs to the initial stage of religion, though it cannot be separated from religion at any stage. In fact, it is inseparable from the Christian life all through the earthly state.

I find four1 different Hebrew terms rendered by our English word “consecrate”; and, while referring to the sam...

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