“Listen to Me, you stubborn-hearted, who are far from righteousness: I bring My righteousness near, it shall not be far off; My salvation shall not linger.” Isaiah 46:12-13
“We are all like an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags.” Isaiah 64:6
True religion is founded upon the knowledge of the true God. Sinners are apt to think that they have a high opinion of God because they think highly of His mercy; whereas God is as holy and as just as He is merciful, and He will as certainly punish the guilty as He will pardon the penitent and believing soul.
“God, I thank You that I am not like other men,” says every self-righteous sinner; not considering that, if God were extreme to mark what is amiss, no flesh living could be justified.
“God, be merciful to me a sinner,” says every true Christian and real believer. Till this be your language, O my soul; until you feel yourself a lost and helpless sinner; until you be brought to acknowledge the justice of God in your condemnation; until you be driven to Christ as your only refuge and hope of salvation, you are “ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish [your] own righteousness,” and do not submit to the righteousness of Christ.
Devotion by Karl Heinrich von Bogatzky (1690—1774)
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