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Faultlessness Before God.

Faultlessness Before God.

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Published by glennpease

Revelation, xrv., 5.

They are without fault before the throne of God.

Revelation, xrv., 5.

They are without fault before the throne of God.

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Published by: glennpease on Jul 13, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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FAULTLESSESS BEFORE GOD.BY JAMES GALLOWAY COWARevelation, xrv., 5.They are without fault before the throne of God.TOB declares that God puts no trust in Hissaints; that He charges His angels withfolly ; that in His sight the very heavens are notclean. This language is, of course, figurative,and not to be taken literally ; but it well describesto us the transcendent holiness of God, and Hisutter abhorrence of all evil. In comparison of Him, heaven itself is not pure, and angels, enduedwith wisdom, swift and constant to obey, delight-ing in His will, even these are not perfect — fallfar short of perfection before Him. Job wouldshow us the distance between God and man. St.John, however, in the chapter of my text, wouldexhibit another truth, not contradictory, butrather supplementary to Job's, namely, the near-ness, through grace, of man to GoD. The ApostleFAULTLESSESS BEFORE GOD. 11is describing, for the comfort and encouragementof the tried and persecuted, a vision which he hadseen of some of those who have passed awayfrom this worid, and, as a kind of first-fruits, areabready with God and the Lamb ; and he says,that " in their mouth is found no guile ; for theyare without fault before the throne of God."*^ Without fault," means here, without spot orblemish; not only free from actual transgression,but wholly untainted by corruption of sin — ^not
wanting in anything that belongs to the perfectcharacter of the approved of God.That man in his natural state is altogetherfaulty, that even in his redeemed, and spiritualised,and sanctified state, while here on earth, he hasstill many faults, are truths so plainly taught, soproved to our reason and experience, that itwould be idle to enforce them. How, then, canhe ever stand faultless before the throne of God ?ow some would answer, that for Christ's sakeGod overlooks, that Christ, by His merits,hides man's faults ; and so that the redeemed inheaven are not really faultless, but that forChrist's sake faultlessness is reckoned, imputedto them. This is what may be called the popularanswer to our question. But, brethren, howutterly wrong it is seen to be, when we coriaidet78 SERMO VI.that, in order to exalt God's mercy and Hiswisdom in contriving justification, it sacrifices Histruth and His holiness. God cannot call thefaulty faultless. He Who is Truth cannot enterwith His Holy Son (Who is also Truth) into aplan of deceit, by which, to Himself, to them, toangels, to the whole universe, sin shall be pre-sented as holiness. God may agree not to reckonwith men for their sins, to forget the past, oncertain conditions to deal with the faulty as if they were actually faultless ; but He cannot — Isay it advisedly, it is beyond the limits of Hispower, as regulated by His truth — He cannotcall evil good. And, brethren, besides, even if it were possible that by some strange agreementwith the Son, sinful man should be passed off asholy, still his sin, while it remained, hide it, dis-
guise it, call it by what name you will, mustseparate from God. Charity might forbear topunish it, or to make mention of it. Charitymight even gild it over ; but Holiness deals notwith the name, but with the reality ; and holinessmust shrink from sin and thrust it away. Thisought to be the most readily perceived and ad-mitted of all Scripture truths, that GoD cannottolerate near iniquity; that — if I may venturereverently to use such words — even if God wereFAULTLESSESS BEFORE GOD. 79willing to receive to Himself an unchanged sinner,the actual reception would be morally impossible ;the same heaven could not contain holiness andsin! o, brethren, if the sinner is to enterheaven, it must be, not because his name ischanged, but his nature; he must be actuallywithout fault before God. We see this to havebeen the case with those described in the text :for it is expressly said, " In their mouth wasfound no guile." Observe, it is not, God merci-fully overlooked their guile for the sake of Hisdear Son, the Guileless One; He charitablycalled them guileless ; but " in their mouth wasfound (the testimony of truth to the searching of holiness) no guile: yea, for they are altogetherblameless, without spot or blemish." It is anactual, not an imputed faultlessness that is thusdescribed. ow, how is it to be attained bysinful men? And here comes in a second answerof popular theology. At or after death, Christmeets the departed, and by His resurrection-power quickens that which was dead, purifies thatwhich was corrupt, spiritualises, sanctifies, and, asby a miracle, converts the sinner into a perfectsaint. This is an answer only second in popularity

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