Home » from the Word » The Waning Authority of Christ (1963)–A.W. Tozer

The Waning Authority of Christ (1963)–A.W. Tozer

The Lordship of Jesus is not quite forgotten among Christians, but it has been relegated to the hymnal where all responsibility toward it may be comfortably discharged in a glow of pleasant religious emotion. Or if it is taught as a theory in the classroom it is rarely applied to practical living. The idea that the Man Christ Jesus has absolute and final authority over the whole church and over all of its members in every detail of their lives is simply not now accepted as true by the rank and file of evangelical Christians.

What we do is this: We accept the Christianity of our group as being identical with that of Christ and His apostles. The beliefs, the practices, the ethics, the activities of our group are equated with the Christianity of the New Testament. Whatever the group thinks or says or does is scriptural, no questions asked. It is assumed that all our Lord expects of us is that we busy ourselves with the activities of the group. In so doing we are keeping the commandments of Christ. (link to read full excerpt)

This past week, when I heard Tozer’s essay, The Waning Authority of Christ*, it struck a deep chord in me because it had diagnosed the core of my internal struggle.  I love the Lord but still I feel dry.  I read the Word and meet with other believers throughout the week, and it is enjoyable, but I still feel unsatisfied and tired.  I’m not looking for a spiritual high, because I know those are just temporary feelings that give no real indications of my growth in life.  What I was struggling with was the realization that I was missing the quiet  steady supply of grace, even though I was doing what a “faithful” Christian believer should be doing.

But while I was going through all the supposed “fail-proof” motions that should be granting the supply of grace I wasn’t really coming to the Person who is grace Himself.  I’ve been just keeping the commandments of Christ instead of spending time with Christ.  I was on autopilot, thinking that I knew what Christ wanted me to do instead of asking Him directly what He wants me to do…and wait for His response, instead of my own trite response.  I’m sorry, Lord, I’ve been just treating you as a relic and not a living Person.  I want to care for Your feelings.

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