Thursday, November 10

Our Insidious Old Man

Spiritual Warfare and Sin: Our Old Nature

This is from A. W. Tozer's daily readings I have been following again this year. I mean "again" since I've used them before. Something about his words gets under my skin. But it's a sinful skin that I can do without. Unfortunately, neither you nor I can get rid of our "skin" quite yet. So, we must face up to our weaknesses and fight like mad to resist its tendencies. But fight we must and win we can through Jesus Christ. Read this for it gets all of us including myself as a pastor. One further word about prophets like Tozer, listen to them. God gives the church prophets who see more clearly than most the current situation and lay it out before the eyes of the rest of us in such a manner that it cannot be avoided. We ought to give thanks for that instead of rejecting it. Pray that God will raise up more prophets who see clearly and speak frankly and lovingly to the real needs of the church. The glory of God is at stake. It is always the most important thing at stake isn't it?

Here is Tozer's article: 

Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.   --Colossians 3:5

There are a lot of people trying to get away with the old man. What do I mean by the old man? I mean your pride, your bossiness, your nastiness, your temper, your mean disposition, your lustfulness and your quarrelsomeness. What do I mean, Reverend? I mean your study, your hunting for a bigger church, being dissatisfied with the offering and blaming the superintendent because you cannot get called. The reason you cannot get called is nobody wants you. That is what I mean, Reverend.

Deacons, what do I mean? I mean sitting around in board meetings wearing your poor pastor out, because you are too stubborn to humble yourself and admit you are wrong.       

What do I mean, musicians? I mean that demeanor that makes you hate somebody that can sing a little better than you can. I mean that jealousy that makes you want to play the violin when everybody knows you can't, especially the choir director. You hate him, wish he were dead, and secretly pray that he would get called to Punxsutawney.

That is what I mean. All of this may be under the guise of spirituality and we may have learned to put our head over on one side, fold our hands gently and put on a beatific smile like St. Francis of Assisi, and still be just as carnal as they come. 

Success and the Christian, 42-44.

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