What is held by some, that none can be in a state of salvation before they have particularly acted a reception of the Lord Jesus Christ for a Savior, and that there cannot be sanctification one moment before the exercise of faith, as they have described it, cannot be true, as they explain this reception of Christ. There must be the principle before there can be the action, in all cases; there must be an alteration made in the heart of the sinner before there can be action consequent upon this alteration; yea, there must be a principle of holiness before holiness is in exercise. Yea, this alteration must not only be before this act of faith in nature (as the cause before the effect) but also in time, if this embracing of Christ as a Savior be a successive action, that is, an action where one thought and act of the mind in any wise follows another, as it certainly is.
For first, there must be an idea of Jesus Christ in the mind, that is an agreeable and truly lovely idea to him; but this cannot be before the soul is sanctified. There must also be the acts of true belief, of his willingness to receive, etc.; neither can this be before sanctification. There must also be a hatred of sin before Christ can be received as a Savior from sin; neither can this be without sanctification. And after this, there must be the act of embracing; neither is there properly an act of faith, as they explain [it], before this is done. Now these thoughts must succeed one another, whether in this order or not, although it be as quick as one thought can follow another; but sanctification must be in the soul before one of them is in the mind.
Works of Jonathan Edwards, Volume 13, The “Miscellanies:” Entry Nos. a–z, aa–zz, 1–500, ed. Thomas A. Schafer (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994), 244-245.
This sanctification is not referring to a Christian's spirtual growth after salvation and justification, but that of "being set apart for a holy use" as the tabernacle furniture was sanctifed;