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Bible Sainthood

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Canonization (or canonisation) is the act by which the Catholic Church or Eastern Orthodox Church declares a deceased person to be a saint, upon which declaration the person is included in the canon, or list, of recognized saints.

Historical development of the process

The first people the Roman Catholic Church honored as saints were the martyrs. Pious legends of their deaths were considered to affirm the truth of their faith in Christ, and formalization and celebration of these legends served to legitimize and propagate the doctrines of the Church and serve as examples.

Acts of formal recognition, such as the erection of an altar over the saint's tomb or transferring the saint's relics to a church, were preceded by formal inquiries into the sanctity of the person's life and the miracles attributed to that person's intercession.


ἅγιος hagiŏs, hag´-ee-os; from ἅγος hagŏs (an awful thing); sacred (phys. pure, mor. blameless or religious, cer. consecrated):—(most) holy (one, thing), saint.

The English word saint is a translation of the Greek ἅγιος (hagios), derived from the verb ἁγιάζω (hagiazo), which means "to set apart", "to sanctify" or "to make holy".

1) Sainthood, has nothing to do with a persons actions, or character. (i.e., a person isn't made a saint because of outstanding character or service.) Biblical Sainthood is simply How God identifies His people!

a. Rom. 1:7.

b. Eph. 2:17-21.

c. Phil.1:1.

d. 1 Cor. 16:1-3.

2) Sainthood is descriptive of position, not character! It is used of N.T. Christians to describe the position of their relationship with God, in contrast to the world. A person isn't different because he is a saint,(special, worthy of higher honor) rather a person must be different (from the world) because God has made Him a Saint.

a. Eph. 5:1-7.

b. 1 Pet. 1:13-16.

3) Sainthood is based on Jesus' sacrificial death! (His Death & resurrection makes Sainthood reality).

a. (1 Cor. 1:1-3; Heb.10:28-29; Heb.13:10-12.)

4) A few key things that contribute to sanctification in Christ:

a. God (John 3:16; 1 Pet. 2:9-10).

b. The Word (Jn.17:17; Acts 20:32; Eph. 5:25-26).

c. Faith (Acts 26:16-18).

d. Baptism into Christ (1 Cor.1:2; Matt:28:18-20;


e. The Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 6:9-11; 1 Pet. 1:1-2).

5) Did N.T. Christians Honor Other Christians?

a. Philippians 2:25-30. Those who risk their lives for Christ.

b. 1 Timothy 5:3. “Honor widows who are truly widows.”

c. 1 Timothy 5:17-18. Elders to have “double honor”

d. Ephesians 6:2. Children to honor their father & mother.

e. 1 Pet. 3:7. Husband to honor his wife.

f. 1 Cor. 12:14-26. Christians to honor each other.

g. 1 Pet. 2:17. Christians to honor & respect everyone.


This does not mean that we are to raise churches, build monuments, or have special feast days in their name. It means that we recognize their great value, and let them know we appreciate them. All honor and glory is reserved for God alone!

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