“Purifying their hearts by faith.” Act 15:9
By faith in the Son of God, we get an interest in His great and glorious salvation; we are justified by faith; we have peace with God by faith. This is an excellent grace, which brings us out of a state of slavery and sin into the liberty of the sons and daughters of God, and will issue in everlasting salvation. Faith purifies the heart of man, naturally vicious, and unites us to Christ, the root of all holiness. Now, reader, examine yourself whether you be in the faith; try the tree by its fruits; ask yourself these questions: Has my faith a purifying influence on my heart? Does the view of Christ dying for my sins make me die unto them? Has my faith in Christ, as wounded for my transgressions and bruised for my iniquities, made me bitterly lament them, sincerely hate them, and seek the death of every one of them? Though there may be still much sin in me, is there none allowed? Is there none, no not one (not even that sin which does most easily beset me), which I desire to be spared and excused in? Do I rather look upon all sin as the enemy of Christ and my own soul, and as such do I hate it with a perfect hatred? Am I praying fervently for Divine grace to subdue it, and in the strength of that grace, do I maintain a constant and vigorous war with it, determined never to give it any rest in my heart, never to cease my conflict with it until I have gained the complete and everlasting victory? Then you are upright; go on and prosper.
Devotion by Karl Heinrich von Bogatzky (1690—1774)
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