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Quotes by A. W. Tozer
I say that a Christian congregation can survive and often appear to prosper in the community by the exercise of human talent and without any touch from the Holy Spirit! All that religious activity and the dear people will not know anything better until the great and terrible day when our self-employed talents are burned with fire and only that which was wrought by the Holy Ghost will stand forever!
Man is bored, because he is too big to be happy with that which sin is giving him. God has made him too great, his potential is too mighty."
"Whatever a man wants badly and persistently enough will determine the man's character."
"Complacency is the deadly enemy of spiritual progress. The contented soul is the stagnant soul."
"We modern Christians are long on talk and short on conduct."
"The average Christian is so cold and so contented with His wretched condition that there is no vacuum of desire into which the blessed Spirit can rush in satisfying fullness."
"We must do something about the cross, and one of two things only we can do--flee it or die upon it."
Devotional Life (distractions)
"Modern civilization is so complex as to make the devotional life all but impossible. It wears us out by multiplying distractions and beats us down by destroying our solitude, where otherwise we might drink and renew our strength before going out to face the world again."
"The New Christian is like a man who has learned to drive a car in a country where the traffic moves on the left side of the highway and suddenly finds himself in another country and forced to drive on the right. He must unlearn his old habit and learn a new one and more serious than all, he must learn in heavy traffic."
"Many of us Christians have become extremely skillful in arranging our lives so as to admit the truth of Christianity without being embarrassed by its implications. We arrange things so that we can get on well enough without divine aid, while at the same time ostensibly seeking it. We boast in the Lord but watch carefully that we never get caught depending on Him."
"No man is worthy to succeed until he is willing to fail. No man is morally worthy of success in religious activities until he is willing that the honor of succeeding should go to another if God so wills. God may allow His servant to succeed when He has disciplined him to a point where he does not need to succeed to be happy."
"In the Book of Acts faith was for each believer a beginning, not an end; it was a journey, not a bed in which to lie while waiting for the day of our Lord's triumph. Believing was not a once-done act; it was more than an act, it was an attitude of heart and mind which inspired and enabled the believer to take up his cross and follow the Lamb whithersoever He went."
"Faith never means gullibility. The man who believes everything is as far from God as the man who refuses to believe anything."
'...Faith is not a once-done act, but a continuous gaze of the heart at the Triune God. Believing, then, is directing the hearts' attention to Jesus. It is lifting the mind to "behold the Lamb of God," and never ceasing that beholding for the rest of our lives.'
Faith as Paul saw it, was a living flaming thing leading to surrender and obedience to the commandments of Christ. Faith in our day often means no more than a meek assent to a doctrine.
Faith and Obedience
In the New Testament there is no contradiction between faith and obedience. Between faith and law-works, yes; between law and grace, yes; but between faith and obedience, not at all. The Bible recognizes no faith that does not lead to obedience, nor does it recognize any obedience that does not spring from faith.
The only fear I have is to fear to get out of the will of God. Outside of the will of God, there's nothing I want, and in the will of God there's nothing I fear, for God has sworn to keep me in His will. If I'm out of his will that's another matter. But if I'm in His will, He's sworn to keep me."
Fear of God
The greatness of God rouses fear within us, but His goodness encourages us not to be afraid of Him. To fear and not be afraid--that is the paradox of faith.
"The notion that the careless sinner is the smart fellow and the serious-minded Christian, though well-intentioned, is a stupid dolt altogether out of touch with life will not stand up under scrutiny. Sin is basically an act of moral folly, and the greater the folly the greater the fool."
"The idea that God will pardon a rebel who has not given up his rebellion is contrary both to the Scriptures and to common sense."
"We must face today as children of tomorrow. We must meet the uncertainties of this world with the certainty of the world to come."
"We are called to an everlasting preoccupation with God."
"It is impossible to keep our moral practices sound and our inward attitudes right while our idea of God is erroneous or inadequate."
Much of our difficulty as seeking Christians stems from our unwillingness to take God as He is and adjust our lives accordingly. We insist upon trying to modify Him and to bring Him nearer to our own image.
"What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us."
God-centered or Man-centered?
"Christianity today is man-centered, not God-centered. God is made to wait patiently, even respectfully, on the whims of men. The image of God currently popular is that of a distracted Father, struggling in heartbroken desperation to get people to accept a Saviour of whom they feel no need and in whom they have very little interest. To persuade these self-sufficent souls to respond to His generous offers God will do almost anything, even using salesmanship methods and talking down to them in the chummiest way imaginable. This view of things is, of course, a kind of religious romanticism which, while it often uses flattering and sometimes embarrasing terms in praise of God, manages nevertheless to make man the star of the show.
More A. W. Tozer Quotes