*By David Murray
Is there any greater help to interpreting and understanding the Bible than a deep sense of one’s own sin?
- When I feel my sinfulness, I am much more motivated to search the Scriptures for grace to help in my time of need.
- When I am convicted of my sin, I doubt my own wisdom and rely more upon the Holy Spirit.
- When I see my sin, I understand the character of God better – His frightening holiness and His refreshing love.
- When I’m confronted with my sinful inability, I have no doubts about my need of sovereign electing grace.
- When I grasp how bad my best deeds are, salvation by faith without works becomes fascinating and utterly compelling.
- When I’m utterly condemned, all new perspectives on justification look ridiculous and I get a far deeper insight into the old but ever new perspective of justification by faith alone.
- When I mourn my spiritual deadness, the resurrection of Christ is not only a doctrine but my only source of life.
- When I sense my immeasurable guilt, I have no difficulty whatsoever in grasping the existence and eternality of hell.
- When I absorb the enormity of my enmity, substitution is no longer a theory of the atonement but my only and enthralling hope.
- When I see the untrustworthiness of my heart and mind, the inerrancy of Scripture becomes a matter of life or death.
- When I perceive the deceitfulness of my own heart, I understand so much better how to minister the Word to other similar hearts.
- When I behold the ugliness and vileness of my sin, my eyes are opened to behold more of the glory and beauty of Christ.
A deep sense of sin gives deep insights into the deep things of the Bible
*Article by David Murray. He is Professor of Old Testament and Practical Theology at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary, and an Adjunct Professor at Westminster Theological Seminary. He blogs at headhearthand.org (9/10/13)