He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?" - Romans 8:32

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Saturday, January 29, 2011 

What Dost Thou Know of Gale Force Winds?

We not only struggle against sin itself, but we also struggle to understand sin rightly. One of the mistakes we make about it is that we think that time spent in sin is somehow enlightening, such that, after we repent, we can teach and inform others by means of our testimony. Now God does use testimonies of His grace in fruitful ways. Paul gives his testimony, to good effect, and the psalmist does the same. After he is forgiven and cleansed, he can talk about it—“then I will teach transgressors” God’s ways (Ps. 51:13).

But there is a common mistake we make about this. We think that the illumination comes from the fact that we were in the sin. Rather, the illumination comes from the grace of God after the fact. If time in sin were some kind of qualification, then this means that someone like Jesus, who never sinned, wouldn’t know anything about it. But this is obviously absurd.

Who knows the most about gale force winds? The man who blows over immediately, or the man who walks a couple of miles in it? Jesus was the one who never blew over—and this means that He is the one who knows the most about wind.

We think that we are qualified to talk about sin and righteousness by how much time we spent on the ground. But that was the time of our confusion, and qualifies for nothing. We learned whatever we learned when God in His grace enabled us to stand up again.

Sin obscures and grace enlightens. And when God is kind to us, we are enabled to turn from the former to the latter.

- Filed under: Reason 4,820 that I love Doug Wilson

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