Somebody say Amen.
One of the purposes for this blog (as if the world needs another blog) is to help me focus on matters consistent with the apostle Paul's admonition in Philippians 4:8: Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. (ESV)
One such commendable thing is from a series on C. J. Mahaney’s blog where he interviews Sinclair Ferguson. (Hat tip: Justin Childers)
In one exchange, C. J. Mahaney asks,
“So without in any way minimizing the doctrine of sin—because you opened by saying it’s only by seeing our sin we come to see the need and the wonder of grace—how can we effectively expose sin and yet ultimately unveil and apply grace?”
Sinclair Ferguson replies,
“At least for myself it’s returning to a principle with me: Make sure you have gone back to basics. Make sure that you think back from first principles.
Part of the first principles of the gospel are these categories, sin and grace. I think the thing that I am trying to get at here is the correlation between my ability to grasp the grace, grace of grace and my grasping the sin, sin of sin (what Ralph Venning calls the “exceeding sinfulness of sin”). The sin is mine and therefore natural for me to see. It’s grace that isn’t natural to me and therefore difficult to see. Therefore I am going to struggle to bring the sin I am so familiar with to the grace I am unfamiliar with. And therefore I need to find ways given to me in Scripture of discovering the graciousness of God.”
As they say, read the whole thing.