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Relying upon Christ Alone


Faith is a rejecting of all other supports, a sole dependency on Christ alone.

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While the sinner depends upon anything else, in himself, or without himself, for safety, he believes not on Christ, he stands no longer upon his own legs. While the sinner stands upon his own bottom, his own righteousness, his good meaning, good nature, good deeds, his charitableness or religiousness, his being better than others, or not so bad as most, and upon this raises hopes of pardon, he is far from faith, he is but in the condition of the unjustified Pharisee. But when he looks upon these as no greater securities than tow or stubble would be, to shroud him from a consuming fire, then he will look out for a better screen to interpose betwixt his soul and that fiery indignation that his sins have kindled.

When the soul, feeling the flame of wrath kindling on her, cries out as one that is already perishing, None but Christ, none but Christ, then he is in the highway to faith.

If the dove which Noah sent out could have found rest for the sole of her feet elsewhere, she would not have returned unto the ark, Gen. viii. 12. Such an averseness there is in our natures to Christ, as he is the last thing a sinner looks after. If he can rest in anything else, if he can find rest in his friends, in his boon companions, in his accommodations, in his worldly employments, in his religious duties, in his good accomplishments; if he find rest to the sole of his foot here, the ark* is forgotten, he returns not to Christ. But when he sees a deluge of wrath overwhelm him, when the waters of God’s wrath rise so high as nothing appears but the ark, nothing to rest on but Christ, nothing but drowning and perishing in the common deluge, except he get into the ark, then he rests not till he gets into Christ, then he flies to him as for his life. See faith thus working in Ephraim, Hosea xiv. 4. They reject all foreign dependences: Asshur shall not save us; they reject all dependence on themselves: we will not ride, &c. They reject all that they had formerly idolised, and that by relying on them, they knew that this was the high way to mercy. . . . Till the sinner apprehend himself as an orphan, without strength, without counsel, all his supports dead which were a father to him, he will not betake himself to Christ as his only guardian; till he thus betake himself to Christ, he believes not.

—David Clarkson, Of Faith, Works (Banner of Truth, 1988), 1:78.

* This parallel to the ark is exactly appropriate (see here).



Posted 2017·08·31 by David Kjos
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Posted in: David Clarkson · Saving Faith · Solus Christus · Works of David Clarkson

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