Saturday, February 15, 2014

Faith is not our saviour

We must understand that faith does not justify and save us by itself, but as an instrument, whereby we lay hold of and apply to ourselves Christ with His righteousness and merits, by which only we appear just before God. A small and weak hand, if it be able to reach up the meat to the mouth, as well performs its duty for the nourishment of the body as one of greater strength, because it is not the strength of the hand but the goodness of the meat which nourishes the body. 
-- George Downame

Faith is not our saviour. It was not faith that was born at Bethlehem and died on Golgotha for us. It was not faith that loved us, and gave itself for us; that bore our sins in its own body on the tree; that died and rose again for our sins. Faith is one thing, the Saviour is another. Faith is one thing, and the cross is another. Let us not confound them, nor ascribe to a poor, imperfect act of man, that which belongs exclusively to the Son of the Living God. ... God has asked and provided a perfect righteousness; He nowhere asks nor expects a perfect faith. 
-- Horatius Bonar

By the stripes of Jesus we are healed. All those stripes He has endured, and left not one of them for us to bear.  "But must we not believe on Him?"  Ay, certainly. If I say of a certain ointment that it heals, I do not deny that you need a bandage with which to apply it to the wound. Faith is the linen which binds the plaster of Christ's reconciliation to the sore of our sin. The linen does not heal; that is the work of the ointment. So faith does not heal; that is the work of the atonement of Christ.
-- Charles Spurgeon

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