the Week of Proper 4 / Ordinary 9
Morning and Evening with A.W. Tozer
Tozer in the Morning
At the risk of shocking some tender-minded persons, I venture to list here a few words and phrases that to millions of evangelical Christians have no longer an identifiable content and are used merely as religious sounds without any relation to reality. They have meaning, and they are good and sacred words, but they have no meaning as used by the speaker and as heard by the listener in the average religious gathering. Here they are: victory, heart and life, all out for God, to the glory of God, receive a blessing, conviction, faith, revival, consecration, the fullness of God, by the grace of God, on fire for God, born again, filled with the Spirit, hallelujah, accept Christ, the will of God, joy and peace, following the Lord--and there are scores of others.
We have reared a temple of religious words comfortably disassociated from reality. And we will soon stand before that just and gentle Monarch who told us that we should give an account of every idle word. God have mercy on us.
Tozer in the Evening
The Quiet Call of Christ
It is like the Lord to fasten a world upon nothing, and make it stay in place. Here He takes that wonderful, mysterious microcosm we call the human soul and makes its future weal or woe to rest upon a single word--if. If any man, He says, and teaches at once the universal inclusiveness of His invitation, and the freedom of the human will. Everyone may come; no one need come, and whoever does come, comes because he chooses to. Every man holds his future in his hand. Not the dominant world leader only, but the inarticulate man lost in anonymity is a man of destiny. He decides which way his soul shall go. He chooses, and destiny waits on the nod of his head. He decides, and hell enlarges herself, or heaven prepares another mansion. So much of Himself has God given to men. There is a strange beauty in the ways of God with men. He sends salvation to the world in the person of a Man and sends that Man to walk the busy ways saying, If any man will come after me. No drama, no fanfare, no tramp of marching feet or tumult of shouting. A kindly Stranger walks through the earth, and so quiet is His voice that it is sometimes lost in the hurly-burly; but it is the last voice of God, and until we become quiet to hear it we have no authentic message. He bears good tidings from afar but He compels no man to listen. If any man will, He says, and passes on. Friendly, courteous, unobtrusive, He yet bears the signet of the King. His word is divine authority, His eyes a tribunal, His face a last judgment.