Great Quotes Series

“The Church is constantly tempted to accept this world as her home . . . but if she is wise she will consider that she stands in the valley between the mountain peaks of eternity past and the eternity to come. The past is gone forever and the present is passing as swift as the shadow on the sundial . . . Even if the earth should continue a million years not one of us could stay and enjoy it. We do well to think of the long tomorrow.”

—A.W. Tozer

Tozer’s Critique of Evangelical Christians

Gif image of TozerTozer was writing about the Christianity he observed in the years before the assassination of President Kennedy. It is shocking to see how relevant his observations continue to be of the church in America today. 

In fact, I wonder if Tozer wouldn’t have a heart attack if he saw the lazy, superficial, feelings-oriented, smarmy, and unbiblical approach to much of what passes for Christian discipleship today. O how we need to hear his Christ-entranced voice today!

“Evangelicalism as we know it today . . . does produce some real Christians . . . but the spiritual climate into which many modern Christians are born does not make for vigorous spiritual growth. Indeed, the whole evangelical world is to a large extent unfavorable to healthy Christianity. . . .  We are making converts of an effete type of Christianity that bears little resemblance to that of the New Testament. The average so-called Bible Christian in our times is  but a wretched parody of true sainthood. Yet we put millions of dollars behind movements to perpetuate this degenerate form of religion, and attack the man who dares challenge the wisdom of it.”

A. W. Tozer, Of God and Men

More and Better Disciples: HOW?

Wednesday is for Discussion

Discipleship, Dare to beI want to prime the pump of our minds with a question and start a discussion.

What would we do differently in our churches if we were really serious about raising the bar on what it means to be a disciple?

Here’s a list to prime the pump of our thinking: I think we might start with …

  • expecting a greater involvement in reaching the lost from the the very start.
  • giving more opportunity earlier for them to demonstrate faithfulness.
  • putting them in faith stretching situations earlier.
  • emphasizing eschatology–Jesus is coming again to judge the living and the dead. (1 Thessalonians is written to baby Christians.)
  • expecting and exhorting them to holiness, love and sacrifice.
  • baptizing them earlier than we do (generally).
  • preparing them for persecution.
  • teaching them the sermon on the mount as the normative goal for their behavior.

    The Call to Discipleship
    It’s Not a Suggestion
  • cultivate in them a shema-lifestyle – loving God with all their heart, mind soul and strength and their neighbors as ourselves.
  • expecting them to fall and lovingly stand with them when they did.
  • always pointing them to the cross not their failures.

Now, what would you add?

Wonderful Counselor, What Does it Mean?

Wednesday is for Thinking

Meditation on Isaiah 9:6

Some years ago, I was counseling with a man who was crushed in spirit. As we talked, it was becoming clear to me that he was living with a monster. He had neglected his wife for the duration of his marriage and now he was finding out that he created a monster with his neglect. She took delight in taking the knife and sticking it in his back and twisting it at every opportunity.

Deserted by God, Ferguson
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As I’m praying and listening to him, the Spirit of God began to call to my mind certain Scriptures that I thought applied to his situation. One of those verses was the Proverbs 21:9 “Better to dwell in the corner of a roof then to dwell in the house with a contentious woman.” I began to pursue the cross references in my Bible to study a little of that theme in Scripture.

“Does that describe the situation in your house tonight?” I asked.

“It sure does.” he said.

“You know that was written 3000 years ago. Don’t you think that the God who could so precisely put his finger on the situation in your home tonight, don’t you think that in the same book . . . If he could understand the problem 3000 years ago don’t you think that he understands the solution too and that in the same book that describes your problem He would also provide help to cope with and change the situation as well?

What does it mean that He is a “Wonderful Counselor?”

It means that He understands every intimate detail of our lives and that He can therefore guide us in every situation of life. He Knows everything about everything and that doesn’t leave anything out!

Men and women this is not Utopia!

This is a sin-infested world, where sinful people do terrible things to one another. And all of those terrible things leave scars–scars of body and scars of the soul.

But there is One who knows it all and is a Wonderful Counselor for every situation.

  1. He knows your situation.
  2. He knows your need.
  3. He knows the end of the story.
  4. And He knows how to get you there.

No trust in such a Wonderful Counselor is ever misplaced.

That’s one of the things that is so wonderful about Christmas.

We’ve Got Discipleship All Wrong

Wednesday is for Thinking

I am away, making my first ever trip to Israel. While I am gone I have prepared a series of re-posts comprised of some of the most downloaded and viewed pages of the last 5 years.

Keep me in prayer for the next 10 days. I am looking forward to walking the streets of Jerusalem. Pray for the peace of Jerusalem (Psalm 122:6).

The discussion thread on this post and the number of reshares on FaceBook™ make this one of the more interesting posts on the BLOG.

For more see: We’ve Got Discipleship All Wrong