Man does not like
to admit that his sinfulness and rebellion are at the heart of the problems
of society. He’s much more comfortable discussing imperfections, weaknesses,
mistakes, and errors in judgment. These terms are socially acceptable, and almost
everyone identifies with them. But an outright acknowledgment of guilt before
a holy God, a 100-percent acceptance of responsibility for wrong doing, runs
against the grain. Yet this kind of honesty is the first step to the freedom
from sin and guilt that God longs to give us and has provided in the death of
Christ.

The story is told
that one day Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, visited a prison and talked
with each of the inmates. There were endless tales of innocence, or misunderstood
motives, and of exploitation. Finally the king stopped at the cell of a convict
who remained silent. “Well,” remarked Frederick, “I suppose you
are an innocent victim too?” “No, sir, I’m not,” replied the
man. “I’m guilty and deserve my punishment.” Turning to the warden,
the king said, “Here, release this rascal before he corrupts all these
fine innocent people in here!”

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