by John Calvin (compiled by John H. Kromminga)
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. —I John 1:9
For in the Scripture one method of confession is prescribed; which is, that since it is the Lord who forgives, forgets, and obliterates sin, we should confess our sins to him, that we may obtain pardon. He is a physician; to him, then, let us discover our wounds. He is injured and offended; let us pray to him for peace. He is the searcher of hearts, and privy to all thoughts; let us hasten to pour out our hearts before him. Finally, it is he who calls sinners; let us not delay to approach him. David says, "I acknowledge my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord, and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin."
Whoever from the heart makes this confession before God, will also, without doubt, have a tongue prepared for confession, as often as it shall be necessary to proclaim the Divine mercy among men; and not only to whisper the secret of his mind once into the ear of an individual, but frequently and publicly, and in the hearing of the whole world, ingenuously to declare, both his own shame and the magnificence and glory of God. —Institutes, III, iv, ix
John Calvin was the premier theologian of the Reformation, but also a pious and godly Christian pastor who endeavored throughout his life to point men and women to Christ. We are grateful to Reformation Heritage Books for permission to use John Calvin's Thine Is My Heart as our daily devotional for 2013 on the OPC Web site. You can currently obtain a printed copy of that book from Reformation Heritage Books.
Dr. Joel Beeke, who is editorial director of Reformation Heritage Books, has this to say:
"Calvin shows us the piety of a Reformed theologian who speaks from the heart. Having tasted the goodness and grace of God in Jesus Christ, he pursued piety by seeking to know and do God’s will every day. He communed with Christ, practicing repentance, self-denial, and cross-bearing. Moreover, his theology worked itself out in heart-felt, Christ-honoring piety. The selections of this devotional bear this out, and hopefully will be used by God to direct pious hearts in our own day."
These devotional readings from John Calvin were compiled by John H. Kromminga. Be sure to read his "Introduction" to John Calvin's Thine Is My Heart.