Educated about Sin

“you never learn you are a sinner by being told. You only ever learn that you are a sinner by being shown.” -John Newton (possible paraphrase)

BTW NOTE: This is a (very able) paraphrase of Newton’s point. Here is the exact quote,

“But that we are so totally depraved, is a truth which no one ever truly learned by being only told it. Indeed if we could receive, and habitually maintain, a right judgement of ourselves, by what is plainly declared in Scripture, it would probably save us many a mournful hour; but experience is the Lord’s school, and they who are taught by him usually learn, that they have no wisdom by the mistakes they make, and that they have no strength by the slips and falls they meet with. Every day draws forth some new corruption which before was little observed, or at least discovers it in a stronger light than before. Thus by degrees they are weaned from leaning to any supposed wisdom, power, or goodness in themselves; they feel the truth of our Lord’s words, ‘Without me ye can do nothing;’ and the necessity of crying with David, ‘O lead me and guide me for thy name’s sake.’

Found in a letter he wrote in 1772, which can be read at this link: