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Wretched in Self, Happy in Christ

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by KenH, Nov 29, 2023.

  1. KenH

    KenH Well-Known Member

    May 18, 2002
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    I was alive without the law once; but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died. Romans 7:9.

    Would you read the best experience of a true believer in Christ, that ever was written? Here it is in this chapter. Try your own. Judge of others by this. Commend me to a holy, humble Paul’s experience. If we are taught by the same Spirit, ours will answer to his, as face does to face in a glass, in the following particulars. (1st.) A sense of sin will be revived in the conscience, which no human palliates, or lulling opiates can keep in a swoon any longer. You will so see, feel, and be sensible of its dread and terror, that you will confess yourself to be totally destroyed by it, and your case to be quite desperate under it. (2d.) This is effected by the law. “For by the law is the knowledge of sin.” (Romans 3:20.) “When the commandment came.” That is, when the purity and spirituality of the holy and perfect law of God comes into your heart and conscience, then you see that it requires truth and perfection of obedience in the inward parts, as well as in the outward walk. You see you have it not: you find it is as much impossible for you, a sinner, to fulfil God’s holy law, as it is for you to create a world. Then, (3d.) you die. You become as a dead man. Seeing the exceeding sinfulness of sin in you, and the dreadful curse of the law hanging over you, all hopes of life forsake you. Sin and the law live within you. They pierce your soul to the quick. The law adds strength to sin. You can no longer flatter yourself, that your state is good, that you can do any thing to bring yourself upon good terms with God. You have now done with all works of righteousness to that end. You can have no more hope upon your obedience to the law, than from your transgressing against it. You see yourself sin in all that you are, and in all that you do. But, (4th.) the hand of the Comforter is in all this. His loving design is to bring you to live by the faith of the Son of God. Instead of looking to and living by your own righteousness, you are to live wholly and solely upon his life, and by his righteousness. But while alive without the law, and striving to fulfil the law, you reject Christ—slight his righteousness—think your own better to trust in than his. Now the Spirit keeps alive sin and the law in you for this very purpose, to make you wretched in self and happy in Christ. All experiences that do not effect this, are not worth a straw. Christ, is the end of the law for righteousness, to every one who believeth. Romans 10:4.

    When dead in sin, I was alive,
    And strong in legal confidence;
    But Christ me lov’d and would not leave
    My soul, under such false pretence.

    Think, O my soul, with grateful joy,
    When legal terrors thee beset,
    Christ sav’d thee from the fiery law,
    And brought thee to salvation sweet.

    - William Mason, A Spiritual Treasury For The Children of God, Volume 2, November 29
  2. kyredneck

    kyredneck Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Jul 28, 2009
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    24 Wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me out of the body of this death?
    25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then I of myself with the mind, indeed, serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. Ro 7
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