Job was one of those whom Scripture describes as “perfect,” yet he cried, “I have sinned.” Noah was perfect in his generation, but no drunkard will allow us to forget that he had his fault. Abraham received the command, “Walk before me and be thou perfect,” but he was not absolutely sinless. Zacharias and Elizabeth were blameless, and yet there was enough unbelief in Zacharias to make him dumb for nine months.

The doctrine of sinless perfection in the flesh is not of God, and he who makes his boast of possessing such perfection has at once declared his own ignorance of himself and of the law of the Lord. Nothing discovers an evil heart more surely than a glorying in its own goodness. He who proclaims his own praise reveals his own shame.

Man is in himself so feeble a creature, that it is a great wonder that he has not long ago been crushed by the elements, exterminated by wild beasts, or destroyed by disease. Omnipotence has bowed itself to his preservation, and compelled all visible things to form the Bodyguard of Man. We believe that the same Preserver of men Who has thus guarded the race watches with equal care over every individual.

The unconditional surrender implied in the question, “What shall I do unto Thee?” is absolutely essential from every man who hopes to be saved. God will never raise the siege until we hand out the keys of the city, open every gate, and bid the Conqueror ride through every street, and take possession of the citadel. The traitor must deliver up himself and trust the prince’s clemency. Till this is done the battle will continue; for the first requisite for peace with God is complete submission.

Spurgeon, C. H. (1992). The Sinner’s Surrender to His Preserver. In A. Bryant (Ed.), Sermon outlines for evangelistic services (p. 14). Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications.