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"...as filthy rags"... Couldn’t you have come up with a better name than that? Why would you name a band that? Yeah, the name probably seems a bit odd. But our band's name describes the human condition, about who the only true God is, and how that loving God works to establish a forever relationship with men and women. We get our name from a passage of scripture- Isaiah 64:6 which states: “All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away” As I read this passage, two things come to mind: 1. God is Holy- 1 John 1:5 tells us that God is light- in Him there is no darkness at all. Darkness is a term consistently equated to sin. Even the things that we consider to be “good” deeds, by comparison to the holiness of God, are as filthy rags. 2. We are sinners- All men and women are in the same boat. Not one of us can look at another and think we are better than another. We have all sinned against a holy and righteous God and are the objects of God's wrath. We have all committed high treason against God, and deserve the due penalty of our sin, which is eternal, conscious torment in hell. Many say that God sending a person to hell forever is unfair. The Bible says the exact opposite, that His condemnation of sinners is perfect justice. God is a Righteous Judge, and cannot just turn a blind eye to our sin… if He did ignore our sin, He would not be perfectly just. Almighty God cannot and will not go against His own character. He must punish sin. The fact that we are all sinners is not man's opinion. God Himself has said in His word that we are all sinners, incapable of earning favor with God. It may seem that I am painting a very bleak picture, but understanding this truth is the key to unlocking some very good news... that God has a remedy for our sin! God is the only true God, and He is full of mercy and grace! God has provided a way, one way, through which we can be brought into a right standing with Him. God sent His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, to become a man. Jesus Christ was sent to walk among us as a man to reveal God to man... Jesus endured struggles, He faced temptation, He lived a sinless life, then He died on the cross as a substitute for sinners. Jesus died that I might live. Jesus Christ, God in a human body, came to pay the penalty for our sin so that we could be forgiven of sin. God’s Justice and His Mercy intersect at the Cross. My best attempt to earn God's favor is worthless… as filthy rags. But by God's grace, I have been set free from the penalty of my sin by believing in Jesus Christ who died and rose again from the grave. Jesus Christ is alive today and He reigns at the right hand of God. The Gospel of John states: “He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.” The only way to come to God is to do it on His terms, not ours. In our sinfulness, we cannot even approach Him. Have you received Christ? The Bible teaches that we must come to Him in brokenness and repentance, believing that He is the Son of God who died and rose again, and trusting in Him alone for our salvation. No good deed can put us in right standing with God, they are all like filthy rags. No religious ceremony can make us right with God, it's all just more filthy rags! Only the blood of Jesus Christ can make us clean before God. If you sense God speaking to you, showing you your need for the Savior, come to Christ today. If you have questions about Jesus Christ, the Bible, or whatever, we’d love to be there for you. Please feel free to e-mail us at: firstname.lastname@example.org May God grant to you the grace of knowing Him though His only Son! Michael Francis