“To be without Christ is to be without peace. Every man has a conscience within him, which must be satisfied before he can be truly happy. So long as this conscience is asleep or half dead, so long, no doubt, he gets along pretty well.
But as soon as a man’s conscience wakes up, and he begins to think of past sins, and present failings, and future judgment, at once he finds out that he needs something to give him inward rest.
But what can do it? Repenting, and praying, and Bible-reading, and church-going, and sacrament-receiving, and self-mortification may be tried, and tried in vain.
They never yet took off the burden from any one’s conscience. And yet peace must be had! There is only one thing that can give peace to the conscience, and that is the blood of Jesus Christ sprinkled on it.
A clear understanding that Christ’s death was an actual payment of our debt to God, and that the merit of that death is made over to man when he believes, is the grand secret of inward peace.
It meets every craving of conscience. It answers every accusation. It calms every fear. It is written, ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace.’
‘He is our peace.’ ‘Being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.’ (John 16:33; Ephes. 2:14; Rom. 5:1.)
We have peace through the blood of His cross: peace like a deep mine,—peace like an ever flowing stream.”
–J.C. Ryle, Holiness: Its Nature, Hindrances, Difficulties and Roots (London: William Hunt and Company, 1889), 364–365.