Quality or quantity?

I figured I would share another incredible bounty from Dr. Horatius Bonar’s incredible little book, The Everlasting Righteousness. This excerpt appears in chapter 2,1 during Bonar’s discussion of faith and substitution. He writes:

With a weak faith and a fearful heart many a sinner stands before the altar. But it is not the strength of his faith, but the perfection of the sacrifice, that saves; and no feebleness of faith, no dimness of eye, no trembling of hand, can change the efficacy of our burnt-offering. The vigour of our faith can add nothing to it, nor can the poverty of it take anything from it. Faith, in all its degrees, still reads the inscription, “The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin;” and if at times the eyes is so dim that it cannot read these words, through blinding tears or bewildering mist, faith rests itself on the certain knowledge fo the fact that the inscription is still there, or at least that the blood itself (of which these words remind us) remains, in all its power and suitableness, upon the altar unchanged and uneffaced . . .

The quality or quantity of faith is not the main question for the sinner. That which we needs to know is that Jesus died and was buried, and rose again, according to the Scriptures. This knowledge is life everlasting.

I am so glad that “saving faith” isn’t measured by the amount or the quality of faith which I possess. Indeed, rather, for saving faith to be efficacious at all it must relinquish everything except for that which is proclaimed in the good news of Jesus’s passion and resurrection (1 Cor. 15:1–4). The simple gospel stands everlastingly as God’s only means salvation. And to that, I give a hearty Amen.

Grace and peace.


Horatius Bonar, The Everlasting Righteousness: or, How Shall Man Be Just With God? (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1993), 23, 25.