For we walk by faith, not by sight. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
— 2 Corinthians 5:7,17, NKJV
Many of us walk by sight, and not by faith. We believe the things that are seen, but do not appreciate the precious promises given us in God’s word.
We have not looked away from ourselves, believing that Jesus is a living Saviour. We must not think that our own grace and merits will save us; the grace of Christ is our only hope of salvation. Through his prophet the Lord promises, “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.” [Isaiah 55:7.] We must believe the naked promise, and not accept feeling for faith. When we trust God fully, when we rely upon the merits of Jesus as a sin-pardoning, Saviour, we shall receive all the help that we can desire.
Satan suggests that you are helpless, and cannot bless yourself. It is true; you are helpless. But lift up Jesus before him: “I have a risen Saviour. In him I trust, and he will never suffer me to be confounded. In his name I triumph. He is my righteousness, and my crown of rejoicing.” Let no one here feel that his case is hopeless; for it is not. You may see that you are sinful and undone; but it is just on this account that you need a Saviour.
Some who come to God by repentance and confession, and even believe that their sins are forgiven, still fail of claiming, as they should, the promises of God. They do not see that Jesus is an ever-present Saviour; and they are not ready to commit the keeping of their souls to him, relying upon him to perfect the work of grace begun in their hearts. While they think they are committing themselves to God, there is a great deal of self-dependence. There are conscientious souls that trust partly to God, and partly to themselves. They do not look to God, to be kept by his power, but depend upon watchfulness against temptation, and the performance of certain duties for acceptance with him. There are no victories in this kind of faith. Such persons toil to no purpose; their souls are in continual bondage, and they find no rest until their burdens are laid at the feet of Jesus.
We can do nothing, absolutely nothing, to commend ourselves to divine favor. We must not trust at all to ourselves nor to our good works; but when as erring, sinful beings we come to Christ, we may find rest in his love. God will accept every one that comes to him trusting wholly in the merits of a crucified Saviour.
— Gospel Workers 1892, p.411-415
My Father, forgive me for looking to myself to be kept from temptation by my own merits. I am helpless to redeem myself. I come to You in repentance, fully putting my trust in the merits of Christ and in Your precious promises. I have a risen Savior! I lay my burdens at Your feet and commit myself to You, claiming the promise to be kept by Your power. In Your name I triumph, in Your love I find rest!