Thursday, February 24, 2005

Offending God's holiness

It's so easy to think of our sin as something minor, especially if we are Christians seeking to live holy lives. Here are a few thoughts from Stephen Charnock on offending God's holiness which cast things in a different light:

The holiness of God is injured

1. By unworthy representations of God and imaginations of him in our own minds

2. In defacing the image of God in our own souls

3. By blaming our sin on God

4. When men study arguments from the holy word of God to colour and shelter their crimes
"…this is to feed the roots of Hell with the dews of Heaven." - v2p175
5. When man will put up petitions to God to favour them in a wicked design

6. In the hating and scoffing at the holiness in a creature

7. By our unprepared for address to him,
"… when like swine, we come into the presence of God with all our mire reeking and steaming upon us. A holy God requires a holy worship; and if our best duties, having filth in every part, as performed by us, are unmet for God, how much more unsuitable are dead and dirty duties to a living and immense holiness!" - v2p176
"God is so holy, that were our services as refined as those of angels, we could not present him with a service meet for his holy nature." - v2p177
"To be conversing with sordid sensualities, when we are at the feet of an infinite God, sitting upon the throne of his holiness is as much a contempt of him, as it would be of a prince, to bring a vessel full of nasty dung with us, when we come to present a petition to him in his royal robes; or as would have been to God, if the high Priest should have swept all the blood and excrements of the sacrifices from the foot of the altar into the Holy of Holies, and heaped it up before the mercy seat, where the presence of God dwelt between the cherubims, and afterwards shovelled it up into the ark, to be lodged with Aaron's rod and the pot of manna." - v2p177

8. In depending upon our imperfect services to bear us out before the tribunal of God
"as if this injured perfection could be contented with the dregs of their purses.2 - v2p177
"the best duties in this life, are but as the steams of a spiced dung-hill" - v2p178

9. When we charge the law of God with rigidness, when we feel it shackles us and prohibits us from our desried pleasures

10. When we rate some sins as less serious than others, or think that by doing something godly we make up for our errors

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