Continual Repentance

O God of Grace,

Thou hast imputed my sin to my substitute,

    and hast imputed his righteousness to my soul,

                    clothing me with bridegroom’s robe,

                    decking me with jewels of holiness.

But in my Christian walk I am still in rags;

        my best prayers are stained with sin;

        my penitential tears are so much impurity;

        my confessions of wrong are so many aggravations of sin;

        my receiving the Spirit is tinctured with selfishness.

I need to repent of my repentance;

I need my tears to be washed;

I have no robe to bring to cover my sins,

    no loom to weave my own righteousness;

I am always standing clothed in filthy garments,

    and by grace am always receiving change of raiment,

    for thou dost always justify the ungodly;

I am always going into the far country,

    and always returning home as a prodigal,

    always saying, Father, forgive me,

    and thou art always bringing forth the best robe.

Every morning let me wear it,

    every evening return in it,

    go out to the day’s work in it,

    be married in it,

    be wound in death in it,

    stand before the great white throne in it,

    enter heaven in it shining as the sun.

Grant me never to lose sight of

    the exceeding sinfulness of sin,

    the exceeding righteousness of salvation,

    the exceeding glory of Christ,

    the exceeding beauty of holiness,

    the exceeding wonder of grace.

From The Valley of Vision – A collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions

Edited by Arthur Bennett

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10 thoughts on “Continual Repentance

  1. Nice post brother! Once again the Spirit has seen fit to unify the bretheren, for in tonight’s case both our blog posts emphasize the grace of God and the worthlessness of man’s works.

    I absolutely did not read your blog until just now, about an hour after I posted my missive on grace and works entitled The Devil Made Me Do It!

    Praise the Lord for His invisible, steady hand!


  2. Amen, Lord Jesus. Thank you, Mike. May I put this on one of my blogs? It is something I would like to collect with other writings I have collected.


  3. Thats a great poem and very touching too.. Spurgeon often used to say that we should never pray to God to show how sinful really we are.. because he said that when people really realise how sinful they really are in the eyes of God, they sometimes fall into depression and they feel terrible, so he said that we should only pray that we should only see enough of our sinfulness that should always keep us coming back to God, but not so deeply as to pine our whole life. I often feel that I should see more of how sinful I really am so that I can despise sin more, but I am a bit afraid of how to pray lest I really see the full extent of how sinful I am in the sight of God and pine my whole life… what do you think?

    God Bless,



  4. Paul,

    I think it is a healthy thing to see how sinful we really are so that we can appreciate the depth of God’s love and Christ’s sacrifice for us.

    In Christ

    Mike Ratliff


  5. Mike, This need not be published. I just wanted to let you know what an ongoing blessing this prayer has been to me. I am so thankful for it. Kim T


  6. Kim,

    I thought about not posting your comment, but I hope you don’t mind that I posted it. I think this prayer is a huge blessing and gives us the direction we must go if we are to be the Spirit-led believers God wants us to be.

    In Christ

    Mike Ratliff


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