Monday, March 19, 2012
TOZER DEVOTIONAL Devotions » Tozer Devotional Monday, March 19, 2012 Growing Up into Christ By "instant Christianity" I mean the kind found almost everywhere in gospel circles and which is born of the notion that we may discharge our total obligation to our own souls by one act of faith, or at most by two, and be relieved thereafter of all anxiety about our spiritual condition. We are saints by calling, our teachers keep telling us, and we are permitted to infer from this that there is no reason to seek to be saints by character. An automatic, once-for-all quality is present here that is completely out of mode with the faith of the New Testament. In this error, as in most others, there lies a certain amount of truth imperfectly understood. It is true that conversion to Christ may be and often is sudden. Where the burden of sin has been heavy the sense of forgiveness is usually clear and joyful. The delight experienced in forgiveness is equal to the degree of moral repugnance felt in repentance. The true Christian has met God. He knows he has eternal life and he is likely to know where and when he received it. And those also who have been filled with the Holy Spirit subsequent to their regeneration have a clear-cut experience of being filled. The Spirit is self-announcing, and the renewed heart has no difficulty identifying His presence as He floods in over the soul. But the trouble is that we tend to put our trust in our experiences and as a consequence misread the entire New Testament. We are constantly being exhorted to make the decision, to settle the matter now, to get the whole thing taken care of at once--and those who exhort us are right in doing so. There are decisions that can be and should be made once and for all. There are personal matters that can be settled instantaneously by a determined act of the will in response to Bible-grounded faith. No one would want to deny this; certainly not I. The question before us is, Just how much can be accomplished in that one act of faith? How much yet remains to be done and how far can a single decision take us? Verse Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. Ephesians 4:15 Thought Growing up into Christ calls for tremendous growing. It does not occur at one point in time or by means of one decision. Oh, how much growing we have yet to experience! Prayer Lord, plant my feet on higher ground! I want to grow up into Christ. May Your Spirit fill me and change me day by day, month by month, year by year.
Monday, March 5, 2012
TOZER DEVOTIONAL Devotions » Tozer Devotional Monday, March 05, 2012 The Cross Message: Foolishness or the Power of God? The cross stands in bold opposition to the natural man. Its philosophy runs contrary to the processes of the unregenerate mind, so that Paul could say bluntly that the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness. To try to find a common ground between the message of the cross and man's fallen reason is to try the impossible, and if persisted in must result in an impaired reason, a meaningless cross and a powerless Christianity. But let us bring the whole matter down from the uplands of theory and simply observe the true Christian as he puts into practice the teachings of Christ and His apostles. Note the contradictions: The Christian believes that in Christ he has died, yet he is more alive than before and he fully expects to live forever. He walks on earth while seated in heaven and though born on earth he finds that after his conversion he is not at home here. Like the nighthawk, which in the air is the essence of grace and beauty but on the ground is awkward and ugly, so the Christian appears at his best in the heavenly places but does not fit well into the ways of the very society into which he was born. Verse For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 1 Corinthians 1:18 Thought The message of the Cross--Christ dying for sinners--is perceived so differently. It is foolishness to those who are perishing. It is the power of God to those who are being saved. Faith makes the difference; faith that recognizes personal sin and God's i Prayer You are the crucified, risen Christ. I thankfully receive Your forgiveness of my sin and Your life for my daily living. Praise Your name!