Separated by Grace

Blessed is the man against whom the LORD counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit. For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long.
PSALM 32:2-3
Separated by Grace
The first [type of confession] is before Cod, of which the prophet David says: "I confess my sin, and I do not cover my iniquity. I said, 'I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,' and You forgave the iniquity of my sin" (Psalm 32 1:5]) . . .. No one can stand before God unless he brings this confession with him. Psalm 130 [:4] says, "With You there is grace, that You may be feared"; that is, whoever deals with You must deal in such a way that he confesses from his heart: "Lord, if You are not compassionate, it does not matter how godly I can be." . . . Thus this confession teaches us that we are all equally evildoers and sinners. . .. If anyone has special grace, then he should thank God for it, and not boast about himself. If anyone has fallen into sin, then it is [because of] his blood and flesh; no use has fallen so deeply that another who now stands cannot fall deeper still. Therefore, there is no distinction among us who are so many; rather, God's grace alone separates us. This kind of confession is so highly necessary that it should not be omitted for a moment, but should be the whole life of a Christian, so that he does not stop praising God's grace and reviling his life before God's eyes."

From Sermon on Confession and the Sacrament (Luther's Works 76:434)
April 22
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