Friday, November 21, 2008

What! Lord! after all I have done!

(Octavius Winslow, "The Lord's Prayer" 1866)

"Only acknowledge your guilt. Admit that you rebelled against the Lord your God and committed adultery against Him by worshiping idols under every green tree. Confess that you refused to follow Me. I, the Lord, have spoken!" Jer. 3:13

God has laid great stress in His word upon the confession of sin. How touching His language addressed to His backsliding people, whose backslidings were of a most aggravated character;than which none could have been of deeper guilt, seeing that they had committed the sin of idolatry!

"Only acknowledge your guilt." This was all that He required at their hands. "Only acknowledge.

" Poor penitent soul, bending in tears and self reproaches over this page, read these words again and again, and yet again, until they have scattered all your dark, repelling thoughts of this sin forgiving God, winning you to His feet as His restored and comforted child, "only acknowledge your guilt."

"What! Lord! after all that I have done, after . . .
my base returns,
my repeated wanderings,
my aggravated transgressions,
my complicated iniquity,
my sins against conviction, light, and love; do You still stretch out your hand to me, a poor, wretched wanderer as I am?

Do You go forth to meet, to welcome, to pardon me?

Do You watch the first kindling of penitence, the first tear of contrition, the first word of confession, 'Father, I have sinned!' Lord, I fall at Your feet, thegreatest of sinners . . .

Your power has drawn me,
Your love has subdued me,
Your grace has conquered me!"

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