Pristine Grace

Nothing Has Changed
by John Pedersen

     There was a time in my life when I could not imagine those who profess the Christian faith, and who confess the historic Reformed creeds, being part of something like the Salem witch trials or a lynching, or some other unspeakable atrocity. But I can now. There is no violence, no cruelty, so severe as that which is excited by the delusion of self-righteousness. In places where the truth is most closely imitated, self righteousness is particularly virulent, and the purer the strain, the more merciless is the one who is energized by it. 

     Those who hated and murdered the Lord were professors of orthodoxy who espoused election and taught the need for forgiveness and divine grace. By their fidelity, or professed fidelity, to the Mosiac law, they knew well the need for the confession and forgiveness of sins, and also they saw themselves as having been chosen, not because they were the greatest of nations, but in spite of the fact they were the least. 

     Nevertheless, their profession of belief in divine grace and their formal humility was appropriated by a self-righteous motive, with the result that God's revelation of righteousness in His Son was seen by them to be the supreme threat to their very existence. 

     Nothing has changed. People are the same.