The Future Is As Bright As The Promises Of God

Archive for October 11, 2014

Superficial Goodness

For not knowing about God’s righteousness and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. Romans 10:3 (NASB)
“God’s way is-first, new life, then better conduct. Men’s way is, ‘cultivate morality, seek after purity, try to be good.’ And surely conscience and experience alike tell us that that is a hopeless effort. To begin with what should be second is an anachronism in morals, and will be sure to result in failure in practice. He is not a wise man that tries to build a house from the chimneys downwards. And to talk about making a man’s doings good before you have secured a radical change in the doer, by the infusion into him of the very life of Jesus Christ Himself, is to begin at the top story, instead of at the foundation. Many of us are trying to put the cart before the horse in that fashion. Many of us have made the attempt over and over again, and the attempt always has failed and will always fail. You may not do much for the mending of your characters and for the incorporation in your lives of virtues and graces which do not grow there naturally and without effort. I do not want to cut the nerves of any man’s stragglings, I do not want to darken the brightness of any man’s aspirations, but I do say that the people who, apart from Jesus Christ, and the entrance into their souls by faith of His quickening power, are seeking, some of them nobly, some of then sadly, and all of the vainly, to cure their faults of character, will never attain anything but a superficial and fragmentary goodness, because they have begun at the wrong end.” – Alexander MacLaren

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