Being Humble, A Sinner or Virtuous?

Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.  (Luke 15:7 )

But God shows his love for us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.   (Romans 5:8)

The saying is sure and worthy of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. And I am the foremost of sinners… (1 Timothy 1:15)

Athonite Elder Porphyrios writes:

We must all be humble: in thought, in word and in behavior. We will never go before God and say, ‘I have virtues.’ God does not want our virtues. Always appear before God as a sinner, not with despair, but ‘trusting in the mercy of His compassion’. Suffice it that we find the secret. 

The secret is love for Christ and humility. Christ will give us the humility. We with our weaknesses are unable to love Him. Let Him love us. Let us entreat Him earnestly to love us and to give us zeal for us to love Him too. (Wounded by Love, p. 154)

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