by John Calvin (compiled by John H. Kromminga)
Is not thy wickedness great? and thine iniquities infinite? —Job 22:5
We are shown here that men must not confess their sins before God lightly, and as it were out of mere form, as they do when they say, "Oh, I do not deny that there are some faults in me." No, we must not do this; but we must make the burden so heavy that we can no longer bear it. For this is how God will be glorified; not when men say that they have some small infirmities and imperfections in them; but when with David they speak of the greatness of their sins and the multitude of their iniquities.
And as Daniel—who was as an angel compared with other men—speaks in his confession; "I have confessed my sins and the sins of my people." He does not speak of some small fault, but he says, "Our sins are great and enormous, O Lord." And so let us confess what we are, and that in such a way that God may be truly glorified.
And what hope may we have that God will receive us, and be merciful and favorably inclined toward us, if we are not overwhelmed with the sins which we have committed? Our Lord Jesus Christ does not say to us, "Come unto me, all ye that say, I am a sinner, there are infirmities in me."
No, he says, "All ye that are laden and weary, whose shoulders stoop under the weight of your sins." These are they that are called by Jesus Christ, to the end that they may find mercy in him; and not such as mock at God and make a light confession, without ever being touched in their hearts. —Sermons
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.