Posted by: Standing Solus Christus | March 30, 2008

Lord’s Day Quote: John Calvin

For, because all of us are inclined by nature to hypocrisy, a kind of empty image of righteousness in place of righteousness itself abundantly satisfies us.  And because nothing appears within or around us that has not been contaminated by great immorality, what is a little less vile pleases us as a thing most pure – so long as we confine our minds with the limits of human corruption…

For if in broad daylight we either look down upon the ground or survey whatever meets our view round about, we seem to ourselves endowed with the strongest and keenest sight; yet when we look up to the sun and gaze straight at it, that power of sight which was particularly strong on earth is at once blunted and confused by a great brilliance, and thus we are compelled to admit that our keenness in looking upon things earthly is sheer dullness when it comes to the sun.  So it happens in estimating our spiritual goods.

As long as we do not look beyond the earth, being quite content with our own righteousness, wisdom, and virtue, we flatter ourselves most sweetly, and fancy ourselves all but demigods.  Suppose we but once begin to raise our thoughts to God, and to ponder his nature, and how completely perfect are his righteousness, wisdom and power – the straightedge to which we must be shaped.  Then, what masquerading earlier as righteousness was pleasing in us will soon grow filthy in its consummate wickedness.  What wonderfully impressed us under the name of wisdom will stink in its very foolishness.  What wore the face of power will prove itself the most miserable weakness.  That is, what in us seems perfection itself corresponds ill to the purity of God. 

John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion Book I, Chapter I, Section II

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Responses

  1. Amen!


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