Savor these wonderful words from the pen of J. C. Ryle, as he reminds us that Christ is our only hope!
Would you be holy? Would you become a new creature? Then you must begin with Christ. You will do nothing at all, and make no progress till you feel your sin and weakness, and flee to Him. He is the root and beginning of all holiness, and the way to be holy is to come to Him by faith and be joined to him… Men sometimes try to make themselves holy first of all, and sad work they make of it. They toil and labour, and turn over new leaves, and make many changes; and yet, like the woman with the issue of blood, before she came to Christ, they feel “nothing bettered, but rather worse” (Mark 5:26). They run in vain, labour in vain; and little wonder, for they are beginning at the wrong end. They are building up a wall of sand, their works run down as fast as they throw it up. They are bailing water out of a leaky vessel; the leak gains on them, not they on the leak… It is a strong but true saying of Traill’s, ‘Wisdom [apart from] Christ is damning folly- righteousness [apart from] Christ is guilt and condemnation- sanctification [apart from] Christ is filth and sin- redemption [apart from] Christ is bondage and slavery.’
Do you want to attain holiness? Do you feel this day a real hearty desire to be holy? Would you be a partaker of the Divine nature? Then go to Christ. Wait for nothing. Wait for nobody. Linger not. Think not to make yourself ready. Go and say to Him, in the words of that beautiful hymn- “Nothing in my hand I bring, Simply to Thy cross I cling; Naked, flee to Thee for dress; Helpless, look the Thee for grace.” There is not a brick nor a stone laid in the work of our sanctification til we go to Christ.