But we are all like an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags; we all fade as a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
- Isaiah 64:6
When Moses saw one of his fellow Hebrews being beaten by an Egyptian, the Bible tells us that "he looked this way and that way, and when he saw no one, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand" (Exodus 2:12). The problem with sand, especially in Egypt, is the wind blows around. Moses should have looked up instead of to the right and to the left.
When we sin, it is always our inclination to try and cover it up.
That was the case with Adam and Eve. When they did what God told them not to do, they tried to hide their sin: "Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings" (Genesis 3:7).
We may chuckle a little at the thought of trying to use fig leaves for clothing, but we do the same thing when we try to cover our sin. It's our natural tendency.
The most common covering of choice for sin are good works. We'll think, I know that I have sinned, but I am going to do some good things for God. I will attend church twice this week. I will put a little more money in the offering. I will read a couple more chapters from the Bible. I will do this for God. . . .
That is like trying to live in the real world with Monopoly money. You can have your hotels on Broadway and Park Place, but in the end, that money isn't real. It is not going to work in the real world.
The Bible says that our righteousness is like filthy rags to God (see Isaiah 64:6). God is the one who must do the covering-not us.