How painfully self–righteous are many! They can talk complacently about having “done their duty,” and being “kind to everybody,” and having always “kept to their church,” and having “never been so very bad” as some, and therefore they seem to think they must go to heaven! And as to deep sense of sin and simple faith in Christ’s blood and sacrifice, it seems to have no place in their religion. Their talk is all of doing and never of believing. And will such self–righteousness as this land anyone in heaven? Never! Without faith, without Christ!
~ J.C. Ryle
Holiness: Its Nature, Hindrances, Difficulties, and Roots, “Without Christ!”, [Moscow, ID: Charles Nolan Publishing, 2001], 305, 306.