I laughed when I read the title of the third chapter of Heroes by my one of my favorite authors, Iain H. Murray. It is called “John Newton: A Wonder to Myself.” I laughed in part because God’s grace certainly does make us a wonder even to ourselves. What keeps us from sin? What keeps us from drinking iniquity like water (Job 15:16)? It is our living Head, whose Spirit is at work within us who have been justified by His grace through faith. Praise God for His grace! Newton’s words (also quoted by Murray) are apropos:
Strange and mysterious is my life;
What opposites I feel within!
A stable peace, a constant strife;
the rule of grace, and power of sin;
To often I am captive led,
Yet daily triumph in my Head. John Newton
C.H. Spurgeon said as much about his Christian life: “There may be persons who can always glide along like a tramcar on rails without a solitary jerk, but I find that I have a vile nature to contend with, and spiritual life is a struggle for me. I have to fight from day to day with inbred corruption, coldness, deadness, barrenness, and if it were not for the Lord Jesus Christ my heart would be as dry as the heart of the damned.” July 11, 1875, Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington
Thank God for those who have bared their soul and described their Christian experience, and most of all, thank God for Jesus.