demands punishment, and that neither divine nor human justice is satisfied unless it be inflicted. This belief is innate in the human mind and cannot be obliterated from it. Some persons, when they have done harm to another person, are quite ready to avert their thoughts from the necessity of giving him satisfaction for the injury they have committed; yet, when any one inflicts any injury on them, they can never rest or be satisfied until they have avenged themselves. Human laws also enjoin the punishment of wrong doing. It is well worthy of consideration, therefore, what truth underlies this requirement alike of conscience and of human law. On reflection it will be seen that this feeling is a type of the requirement of God's justice. This fact proves that, as man's sense of justice and also human law require the exaction of a penalty for wrong doing, so God too, in accordance with His perfect justice, will demand requital from each of us for all our sins, and that He will not pass over our offences merely because of our repentance and conversion, although these things are of much value in His sight. Hence it is evident that repentance and conversion are not in themselves an expiation for sin. From the New Testament also this is evident and quite certain, as will, by God's grace, be fully proved in the fourth section of this chapter.

If, by way of supposition, we may imagine a person who, through prejudice or for some other


reason, does not accept these proofs, yet even he will admit that reason is unable to state with perfect certainty that God will overlook sin simply because of the sinner's repentance. On the contrary, reason in this matter completely fails to find any means whereby, with due regard to His own attribute of infinite justice, God can possibly forgive sin at all. Hence it leaves man in continual doubt and uncertainty, and shows him how deep is his need of a revelation from God to teach him the way of salvation, and to show him where an expiation for his sins may be found.

False reasoning suggests another expedient by which perchance man may obtain pardon of his sins. Many people fancy that good works will form an expiation for their sins, and that by this means they will become acceptable in God's presence and obtain salvation. On their own good works, therefore, they set all their hope. In considering this matter we must first inquire, what is meant by 'good work.' The answer is that a good work is one, that is, in accordance with God's commandments, and which is done with a purpose and intention, that is, in harmony with the divine will, in such a way that it is done not from selfishness or love of the world, but solely through love towards God and through obedience to Him. But any one who has even a slight acquaintance with the inward condition and outward acts of himself and of other men will at once perceive that few good works of