A lot of people assume that Christianity began with the birth of Christ yet Jesus was there from the beginning, before the foundation of the world was laid, to put it poetically in construction terms. As much as there are differences regarding covenants & theocratic laws, the abiding call to faith in the God who alone can save is the same.
The children of Israel via Abraham never deserved God’s favour, it was amazing grace then as much as it is now. As the song says…a wretch like me, not a super cool, super hip dude or dude-ess being blown by the winds of change. Deep down in our hearts we are wretched, lost in sin, incapable of saving ourselves & prone to wander. This truth reveals itself within the lyrics, it goes way beyond the slave trade of the hymn writer John Newton (1725-1807) & focuses on human depravity across the spectrum of sin in all its manifestations.
Yes we are intelligent, yes we can do good things but again that is only because God made us that way, boasting will only get us so far, particularly when it comes to death. To see in terms of faith is to know that God is light & in Him there is no darkness. The darkness that we see in ourselves has been overcome, not by us but by the one who truly saves, both now & forever. Gal 3:23-29. John 1:1-14.