I have been enjoying Tozer’s The Pursuit of God over the last week or so. I had read this book shortly after my conversion approximately 12 years ago and reading it afresh has been a tremendous blessing. One point that Tozer makes in this book that I found very informative and in some sense spoke to me was on how to live as a forgiven Christian. Christians should live as forgiven Christians always pursuing God. Many people, when they are converted, believe that because they have found God that this is the end of their pursuit. While this may sound strange especially to my reformed brethren, sometimes that pursuit finds serious obstacles which need to be found and dealt with. I have met many people who tell me they’ve grown cold or are lacking any spiritual momentum. Some argue they are backslidden while others just can’t seem to get on with their spiritual lives. With that said, I enjoyed this small segment and thought I would share since I felt it speaks to the point:
With the veil removed by the rending of Jesus’ flesh, with nothing on God’s side to prevent us from entering (i.e. the holy of holies- my addition), why do we tarry without? Why do we consent to abide all our days just outside the Holy of Holies and never enter at all to look upon God?.. We sense that call is for us, but still we fail to draw near, and the years pass and we grow old and tired in the outer courts of the tabernacle. What hinders us? The answer usually given, simply that we are “cold”, will not explain all the facts. There is something more serious than coldness of heart, something that may be back of that coldness and be the cause of its existence. What is it? What but the presence of a veil in our hearts? A veil not taken away as the first veil was, but which remains there still shutting out the light and hiding the face of God from us. It is the veil of our fleshly, fallen nature living on, unjudged within us, uncrucified and unrepudiated, It is the close-woven veil of the self-life which we have never truly acknowledged, of which we have been secretly ashamed, and which for reasons we have never brought to the judgment of the cross. It is not too mysterious , this opaque veil, nor is it hard to identify. We have but to look into our own hearts and we shall see it there, sewn and patched and repaired it may be, but there nevertheless, an enemy to our lives and an effective block to our spiritual progress…But I am addressing the thirsting souls who are determined to follow God…They will face the facts however unpleasant…It is woven of the fine threads of the self-life, the hyphenated sins of the human spirit. They are not something we do, they are something we are, and therein lies both their subtlety and their power…It can be removed only in spiritual experience, never by mere instruction. We may as well try to instruct leprosy out of our system. There must be a work of God in destruction before we are free. We must invite the cross to do its deadly work within us. We must bring our self-sins to the cross for judgment. We must prepare ourselves for an ordeal of suffering in some measure like that through which our Saviour past…Let us beware of tinkering with our inner life, hoping ourselves to rend the veil. God must do everything for us. Our part is to yield and trust. We must confess, forsake, repudiate the self-life, and then reckon it crucified.