I have found the following passage drawn from Pastor Bonar’s book The Everlasting Righteousness as a great means to humble my proud heart.
The history of six thousand years of evil has been lost on man. He refuses to read its awful lesson regarding sin, and God’s displeasure against the sinner, which that history records. The flood of evil that has issued forth from one single sin he has forgotten. The death, the darkness, the sorrow, the sickness, the tears, the weariness, the madness, the confusion, the bloodshed, the furious hatred between man and man, making earth a suburb of hell,-all this is overlooked or misread; and man repels the thought that sin is crime, which God hates with an infinite hate, and which He, in His righteousness, must condemn and avenge.
If sin is such a surface thing, a trifle, as men deem it, what is the significance of this long sad story? Do earth’s ten thousand graveyards, where human love lies buried, tell no darker tale? Do the millions upon millions of broken hearts and heavy eyes say that sin is but a trifle? Does the moaning of the hospital or the carnage of the battlefield, the blood-stained sword, and the death-dealing artillery, proclaim that sin is a mere casualty, and the human heart the seat of goodness after all? Does the earthquake, the volcano, the hurricane, the tempest, speak nothing of sin’s desperate evil? Does mans aching head, and empty heart, and burdened spirit, and shaded brow, and weary brain, and tottering limbs, not utter, in a voice articulate beyond mistake, that sin is GUILT, that that guilt must be punished,-punished by the Judge of all,-not as a mere “violation of natural laws,” but as a breach of the eternal law, which admits of no reversal, “The soul that sinneth, it shall die”? For without law, sin is nothing. “The strength of sin is the law” (1 Cor 15:56); and he who makes light of sin must defend moral confusion and injustice; he who refuses to recognize sin as guilt, must dissolve the law of the universe, or ascribe imbecility and injustice to the Judge of all.
The world has grown old in sin, and has now more than ever begun to trifle with it, either as a necessity which cannot be cured, or a partial aberration from good order which will rectify itself ere long. It is this tampering with evil, this refusal to see sin as God sees it, as the law declares it, and as the story of our race has revealed it, that has in all ages been the root of error, and of wide departure from the faith once delivered to the saints. Admit the evil of sin, with all its eternal consequences, and you are shut up to a divine way of dealing with it. Deny the evil of sin, and the future results of that evil, and you may deny the whole revelation of God, set aside the cross, and abrogate the law.