Self Reform Won't Do

You may try to reform yourself - but all your efforts will be in vain
By the works of the Law none of all flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law is the knowledge of sin
(Romans 3:20)

Universal Goal for Self Reform

Just about every religious philosophy ever devised aims to achieve self reformation through teaching, discipline, forms of meditation, religious rituals and often more bizarre activities. They are all concerned with overcoming human failings and making people good enough to meet whatever is their chosen standard.

Some religions are more effective than others in achieving reform. The fallacy in all these religious practices, however, is that they can only ever affect the outward appearance. Some are very good at doing so, but all are attempting to change people from the outside, when the real problem is in the hearts of people.

If you have ever had reason to try improving the appearance of a rotten apple, then you can paint it, wax it, polish it or do anything else to it but at its core it is still a rotten apple.

Sin is Rottenness at the Core

Sin is much like the rottenness of the apple. It exists at the very core of a man or woman and therefore although outward reform may improve appearances, it never impacts the root problem.

In some cases, religious practices may make you more aware of how great is the problem within you, but that realisation is of limited value if you can’t actually do anything about it.

It is for this reason that reforming yourself can never be enough to satisfy God’s standards. You are only improving the ‘appearance’ of righteousness without ever touching on the issue that causes God so much grief.

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