Monday, October 20, 2008

This wretched state of sin and temptation

This wretched state of sin and temptation (Letters of John Newton)

"What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death!" Romans 7:24

Though we can fall of ourselves--we cannot rise without God's help! Indeed, every sin, in its own nature, has a tendency towards a final apostasy! By our repeated slips and falls into sin, we gain a more emphatic conviction of our own vileness and depravity; and we experimentally learn and feel our own weakness.

In His own time, Jesus returns to convince, humble, pardon, comfort and renew the soul. We begin at length to learn that we are nothing, have nothing, call do nothing--but sin! And thus we are gradually prepared to live more outside of ourselves--and to derive all our sufficiency of every kind from Jesus, the fountain of all grace. We learn to tread more warily; to trust less to our own strength; to have lower thoughts of ourselves, and higher thoughts of Jesus!

This wretched state of sin and temptation, makes the thoughts of death and eternity desirable. Then this conflict shall cease! Then I shall sin and wander no more, shall see Him as he is, and be like Him forever!

2 comments:

steve martin said...

Great sentences from John Newton!

This is how God's Law ought to work on us. To condemn us. Not used as some principle for Godly living that we can half-do, half the time.

When the Law is used in it's harshest form (the way Jesus used it in His sermon on the mount) then the gospel can do it's sweet work of forgiving us and raising us to new life.

Excellent post, Wayne! Thanks!

Wretched Sinner said...

Hit the nail right on the head brother:
James: 4:4-8 (NASB)
"4 You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
5 Or do you think that the Scripture speaks to no purpose: "He jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us"?
6 But He gives a greater grace. Therefore {it} says, "God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble."
7 Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded."

-W.S.