THE NEW “EVANGELISM” – by A.W. Tozer

The new cross encourages a new and entirely different evangelistic approach. The evangelist does not demand abnegation of the old life before a new life can be received. He preaches not contrasts but similarities. He seeks to key into public interest by showing that Christianity makes no unpleasant demands; rather, it offers the same thing the world does, only on a higher level. Whatever the sin-mad world happens to be clamoring after at the moment is cleverly shown to be the very thing the gospel offers, only the religious product is better…

That evangelism which draws friendly parallels between the ways
of God and the ways of men is false to the Bible and cruel to the
souls of its hearers. The faith of Christ does not parallel the world,
it intersects it. In coming to Christ we do not bring our old life up
onto a higher plane; we leave it at the cross. The corn of wheat
must fall into the ground and die.

We who preach the gospel must not think of ourselves as public
relations agents sent to establish good will between Christ and
the world. We must not imagine ourselves commissioned to make
Christ acceptable to big business, the press, or the world of sports,
or modern education. We are not diplomats but prophets, and our
message is not a compromise but an ultimatum.

God offers life, but not an improved old life. The life He offers is
life out of death. It stands always on the far side of the cross.
Whoever would possess it must pass under the rod. He must
repudiate himself and concur in God’s just sentence against him.

What does this mean to the individual, the condemned man who
would find life in Christ Jesus?… He must forsake his sins and
then go on to forsake himself. Let him cover nothing, defend
nothing, excuse nothing. Let him not seek to make terms with
God, but let him bow his head before the stroke of God’s stern
displeasure and acknowledge himself worthy to die… The cross
that ended the earthly life of Jesus now puts an end to the sinner;
and the power that raised Christ from the dead now raises him to
a new life along with Christ.

To any who may object to this or count it merely a narrow and
private view of truth, let me say God has set His hallmark of
approval upon this message from Paul’s day to the present.
Whether stated in these exact words or not, this has been the
content of all preaching that has brought life and power to the
world through the centuries. The mystics, the reformers, the
revivalists have put their emphasis here, and signs and wonders
and mighty operations of the Holy Ghost gave witness to
God’s approval.

Dare we, the heirs of such a legacy of power, tamper with the
truth? Dare we with our stubby pencils erase the lines of the
blueprint or alter the pattern shown us in the Mount? May God
forbid. Let us preach the old cross and we will know the old power.

-PLEASE COMMENT on this topic below-

Posted in Uncategorized by Andrew on August 13th, 2014 at 12:08 pm.

70 comments

70 Replies

  1. Robert Aug 13th 2014

    AW Tozer points to the deception that has infiltrated the fellowships today, that of walking in the ways of the world. Whilst his words concerning this matter are sound, it is sad that he himself has clearly fallen into deception naming the mystics with the reformers, claiming both were walking according to the ways of God’s truth. Nothing could be more from the truth.

    None of us is immune to deception, and those who do not think they can be deceived, already are.
    Best we heed the message of the good Bereans and search the scriptures to see if what is said is so.

    1 Thes 5:21

    Robert

  2. Americans do not like to even think about the Way of the Cross life. Oh, they say they do, but the real Cross is painful, agonizing and still a bloody Cross. Ask them to lay down their lives to help someone and they run for cover. And if you DARE speak of sacrifice, most will tell you that “it was all done at the Cross,” so they do not have to sacrifice. Powerless and we wonder why.

    As Islam takes over our nation and Jihad is declared from the White House, we wonder why. They carry their “PRAYER MATS” everywhere they go. Yet if we had half the zeal they do, we could see dramatic changes in our Nation and the world. Christianity is not a bless me club, but Americans treat it like it is too often. Churches have become the local Christian Social Clubs!

    God does not bless apathy nor laziness. But things will soon change in this nation…..already are, as persecution will be fiery and it will again cost us our very lives for our faith. Then we shall know just who really has true faith. Americans will know what it is like soon to become Martyrs for our precious faith. And with that, we shall be purified! Judgment is at our door.

  3. His Truth is marching on Aug 13th 2014

    Tozer sounds angry here…..I am not sure we should preach an angry gospel, though I dont’ disagree with a lot of what he is saying in general, just not in that ‘tone of voice’. The gospel is, after all, GOOD news to whom?….usually to those who are already suffering, whose hearts are already prepared. Keeping in mind an evangelist is reaping what others have already worked hard for. So, above all, I think we should depend upon the Holy Spirit to do His work, however He wants to do it. Only He knows what any individual needs to be drawn to Christ. It says, some save by fear, some by compassion.

  4. The truth is that the “church” has set back with no discernment and become like the “world” .
    A gospel with no guts.Self satisfying, but soon to have the last wake up call. The houses built on sand will be removed.

  5. I believe it has become far worse in the western world today than when Tozer wrote.
    How often do we hear the words “God loves you the way you are” or “come as you are” echoed in weak appeal to become a Christian now days.
    How are the constant claims of God or the Holy Spirit’s presence in meetings and concerts so accepted where little conviction of sin or the fear of God is demostrated given the real Holy Spirit will and does convict the world of sin and of rightousness and judgement.
    The promise of the Gospel to the repentant and only the repentant is to receive the forgivess of sins and to be totally changed from the inside out.
    God wants to make a new creation (person), were old things (sin, carnality etc) pass away and all things are new ( see 2 Cor 5:17).
    As the Lord says, unless a man be born again he shall by no means enter the Kingdom of heaven.
    Bring back the old Gospel because the new one is a false one.

    God Bless,

    Grant,
    [email protected]

  6. Darren Sargent Aug 13th 2014

    To some we are a sweet-smelling fragrance; to others we are the stench of death.

    I wonder what look was on the Lord’s face when he drove out the money changers with such violence? Or how He received the anointing of His feet with tears? Our Lord has a soul; God has a soul and it is shown upon His face. One moment full of grief, another set like flint. It is of His choosing, so if Tozer ‘appears’ angry (and I do not agree with this interpretation), then that by itself does not disqualify him or his message. My spirit witnessed as I read Tozer’s words.

    Whether we like it or not, the Good News does contain wrath and the day of God’s vengeance, and all His judgements are perfect.

    Tozer was a prophet and a prophet invariably tears down before he plants. There is always something in a prophet to object to; this is a test of our own prejudice.

    What Tozer speaks here is an indictment against man’s tendency to distort the Gospel. I have seen it in my own life. The word sin his mouth are truth.

  7. Darren Sargent Aug 13th 2014

    The words in his mouth . . .

  8. All I can say is THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart for sending this message out! I have been contending for the “faith once delivered” and have found such opposition to the true message of the cross…HIS and OURS! I am grateful for your posting this in hopes that many who read will examine to see if they have COME in through the true DOOR to the sheepfold….the CROSS! So many in the American “church” have not come in the ONLY way…Repent, believe, and receive power to DIE, DENY, and LIVE the CRUCIFIED life! Christ and Him crucifed…and us with HIM is the message not heralded and the lost message today….as in Josiah’s day…we need the word of the LORD back in the house of the LORD! Then we will have births and not just converts. Thank you again for printing the message of the CROSS today. May the Lord bless you for this.

  9. Great comment Darren,

    The problem is so many make and portray God in a image of their own makeing.
    Love is being made as God and used as mans yardstick as to whether something is of God or not.
    God is not love, love is just one or the many expressions of God ….. He has righteous anger…. He even hates…… He judges…. He loves.
    God desires that none should perish but that all should come to Him… but we have to repent of our sins and believe in Jesus Christ (a none negociable bible fact) to be saved.
    No greater love has a man than to lay down his life for another.
    Jesus died for all humanity….. nows thats real love.

    God Bless,

    Grant
    [email protected]

  10. I don’t believe that this “new evangelism” is that new. For some time I have been stirred by the book of Jude’s warning to “earnestly contend for the faith that was once delivered to the saints”…..namely, turning the grace of God into lasciviousness. It has been a variant of the “gospel” since the time of Jude, according to the scriptures. In our time though, unfortunately, it appears to be overtaking the genuine message and few are hearing the real thing.

  11. goodwordtoday Aug 13th 2014

    One thing – we are ambassadors of Christ so there is a certain amount of diplomacy involved when sharing the good news. However, I believe the real root of the problem today with a diluted message is because the Western church has stopped believing in the power of the Holy Spirit by and large. Many mainstream denominations even preach against the Holy Spirit. There is no power, no signs, no miracles backing up what is preached…at least not in Western countries.

    Romans 15:17-19 – Paul says: “Therefore I glory in Christ Jesus in my service to God. I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done–by the power of signs and miracles, through the power of the Spirit. So from Jerusalem all the around to Illyricum, I have fully proclaimed the gospel of Christ.”

    Everyone keeps talking compromise but it’s not that – it’s faithlessness, impotence, and heresy that have been crumbling the church from the inside just like water and rust cause spalling in a concrete structure.

  12. goodwordtoday Aug 13th 2014

    What we are seeing today is the result of that – symptoms of inner decay.

  13. ValleyAnt Aug 13th 2014

    Robert’s, it’s so important to remember what you said: “None of us is immune to deception, and those who do not think they can be deceived, already are.”

    Joyce, true: “God does not bless apathy nor laziness.”

    His Truth, it’s not uncommon for people who’ve spent their lives ministering to a stiff-necked audience to become angry. It happened to Moses, to Paul, to Jesus (but He didn’t sin in His anger), and it happens today. People who haven’t spent their lives reaching out to goat-headed people can’t understand why a minister would be angry who has spent his own life to little avail to save people who persist in choosing Death for themselves and the generations after them. After all, God in Christ spent His life for the world and will punish the world in anger for rejecting His message.

    Jerry Tomecek, right: “A gospel with no guts.”

    Grant, that’s the heart of the Gospel: “As the Lord says, unless a man be born again he shall by no means enter the Kingdom of heaven.”

    Darren Sargent, right: “Tozer was a prophet and a prophet invariably tears down before he plants.” As long as there remains stuff to be torn down, the prophet may appear to focus on the negative, because he can’t yet build and so must focus on tearing down until.

    Goodwordtoday, right: “Everyone keeps talking compromise but it’s not that – it’s faithlessness, impotence, and heresy… What we are seeing today is the result of that – symptoms of inner decay.”

    God in the OT– and Jesus in the NT– told His ministers that He was sending them to a stiff-necked people who would rather kill them than receive their message. It’s important for ministers to know ahead of time that the Good News is bad news to many so that the ministers doesn’t fall into despair or sin in anger when people reject their message.

  14. Andrew Aug 13th 2014

    Actually – the rejection of God’s message made Jesus VERY angry.

    And rejection of God’s prophets leads to judgment.

    I see a little “righteous anger” in this message. But the tone is actually right on. We need more of it.

    Blessings to all,

    Andrew Strom

  15. Darren Sargent Aug 13th 2014

    The nature of the message we bear as individuals or as churches is in direct proportion to our knowledge of God as He actually – in fact – is (Psalm 50:21). The true knowledge of God comes by discipline (Pro 12:1), by reproof, correction, suffering . . . death: by our unity with Him in His dealings with us where the word is made flesh.

    Our conception of ‘god’ has been faulty and we make ourselves in that image, we get what we want. We get ourselves and we make ourselves god, a god – just as Lord was exchanged for Baal. If we find ourselves in that situation and go to pray fervently in a time or need, we may find no answer for the god we pray to, the god of our imagination, the god of our narcissistic reflection, does not exist. This is why Val’s word about Jude is so crucial. It HAS to be contended for because in a generation it can be lost. Writing it down(though needful) is never enough – unless it is upon the tablet of our hearts.

    Robin Williams, the actor and comedian, died this week. It saddened me deeply and I felt the Lord say, ‘As a man dies, so has he lived.’ How we die(in life or death) is the ultimate statement of who we our. Robin Williams committed suicide by asphyxia.

    The ultimate statement of God and Who He is is found in the Cross of Christ – there and nowhere else: not in the power of the Holy Spirit and not in power of prayer or the love of the Father. It is appointed that it is only found there, at the foot of the skull.

    If we decorate our crosses in neon or loincloths, scarlet robes or decorous embellishments, it is clear we have softened the Cross, muted its tones. As Karl Barth would say, “We have used the truth to silence the truth.” As soon as we go to add or takeaway from the Cross we have lost it completely. If you mute the cross you mute the sin and the Grace that swallowed it up.

    Let it remain stark, splintered and bloody. Let it not be relegated to a corner or used as a symbol. Let it be statement and fact.

    If we start here and stay here, the true Apostolic faith will be established by our presence. Then we may even give offence to a whole city as Paul did at Mars Hill in his opening line or we go that extra mile not to give offence. At times we will be conscious that what comes out of us if offensive and at other times we are not even aware of the offence we give. One day someone will judge us as severe and unloving and on another day angelic and like ‘the gods’. It is never one or the other, it is both.

    The wind blows wherever it goes . . .

  16. I can hardly believe that there is little more than 15 comments on this.
    Is this a sign of the apathy regarding the preaching of a the true gospel.
    If the thread was about gold dust, angel feathers, fire tunnels or some of the other way out there things being passed off as God and truth then there would be way more comments by now.
    The center of real preaching is Jesus Christ and thats what people
    don’t like, they cry “tickle my ears, make me rich, I want to feel good, entertain me, give me … give me …give me” and the preachers do because the people will gladly pay for it and it keeps them in business.
    “Look at me…. look at me” is the motive in so much preaching today.
    Its not look at Jesus…. if they did they would be totally ashamed.
    Paul said “I preach Christ and Him crucified for this is the power of God” and Paul worked real miracles.
    It is said “watch out for those who have the appearance of godliness but deny its power”…. thats not talking about them denying miracles
    etc….. they deny the fullness of the completed work on the cross ….the power to change a repentant sinner.. the righteousness of God…. to be born again.
    Sin is tolerated because they don’t have, show,experience, know or want to proclaim that the very nature of sin is dealt to at the cross.
    Do people want to be regenerated or remain degenerates… I think some don’t know the difference,.,,, only appearances matter like the pharisees.
    How terrible it is going to be for those who say to Christ “we did this and that in your name” and He replies ” get away from me I never knew you”.
    To our shame workers of iniquity will and do abound.
    A popular song on the christian music charts at the moment has the words “I feel alive when I am on Gods great dance floor”.
    Perhaps we need another one ” I feel terrified of the lake of fire, I really don’t want to end up there”.

    God bless,

    Grant Sutton
    [email protected]

  17. Andrew Aug 14th 2014

    Controversy seems to be the only thing that “sells” these days, Grant.

    Yet here we have the greatest tragedy that this generation faces.

    But no-one deems it “exciting” enough to talk about.

    Blessings,

    Andrew Strom.

  18. DonaldN Aug 14th 2014

    Tozer was speaking about a Church and evangelistic practices well over 50 years ago. I can only imagine how appalled he would be to see what the church has become in this day. We can look back at the church of the mid 1900’s and wish we could still see that amount of dedication and truth.
    I have heard many times, mostly from youth pastors, “you need to learn to accept them as they are!”
    My reply has been this. “I have no problem accepting them as they are, coming from the world. The problem I have is that I cannot tell the difference from the “new-comers” and those who have been in the church for years. If I see no change in them, then you (the Pastor) are not doing your job.”

  19. DonaldN Aug 14th 2014

    John 2:15 And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables;
    16 And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father’s house an house of merchandise.
    17 And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.

    I think many of us need to muster up this amount of zeal.

  20. Man … this was/is a GOOD WORD!

    He must forsake his sins and then go on to forsake himself. Let him cover nothing, defend nothing, excuse nothing. Let him not seek to make terms with God, but let him bow his head before the stroke of God’s stern displeasure and acknowledge himself worthy to die…

    No agenda but HIS. No desire to become great or rich or known ….

    This IS TRUTH!

  21. 3 Keys to Correctly Interpret the Bible>

    http://vimeo.com/83826810

  22. annikins Aug 14th 2014

    I just found this quote from Dietrich Bonhoeffer ,this is the kind of faith we need in our lives

    The Christian cannot simply take for granted the privilege of living among other Christians.
    Jesus Christ lived in the midst of His enemies. In the end all His disciples abandoned Him.
    On the cross He was all alone, surrounded by criminals and the jeering crowds.
    He had come for the express purpose of bringing peace to the enemies of God.
    So Christians, too, belong not in the seclusion of a cloistered life but in the midst of enemies.
    There they find their mission, their work.

  23. A footnote from Chuck Cohen in “Roots of Our Faith”

    “Much of the church has acted, and still acts, as though it has been grafted into a Christmas Tree – flashing its attractive lights and decorations, but unconcerned about its loss of roots and wondering why it is spiritually drying up and dying.”

  24. Michael Kemp Aug 14th 2014

    So much to assimilate here. How perceptive Tozer was. How much the church needs true prophets today like him. And what a sorry, diluted Gospel many preach at the present time, sanctifying materialism and compromise. The day of reckoning surely will come, and the pseudo church be exposed for what it truly is. Lord, have mercy upon us all!

  25. Aggression is normally regarded as a bad thing, certainly not what you would expect in relation to coming to Jesus Christ. However we must interpret scripture as it is and not according to the prejudices of understanding born of editing the gospel to make it more palatable to the masses. Jesus said “But as many as received Him to them gave He power to become the sons of God” (John 1:11).What did He mean, and can we properly substitute the word “accept” for the word “receive”. Are these two words the same or do they differ substantatially. They seem, at least at first sight, to be close in their meaning. I can for example “accept” a gift at Christmas just as I can “receive one”. The difference however is stark when we look at the meaning of “receive” in the Greek language. In the Greek (Lambano) the word is active. It is an aggressive act of the total personality. So then, the Holy Spirit is saying “as many as aggressively took Him with their total personality to them gave He power to become the sons of God” There must be a determined act of the will that will not deny any condition laid down. Jesus must be “taken” “received” on His own terms. The three men in Luke 9 came with conditions. They did not aggressively “take Him” unconditionally.
    May I suggest a new term (rather than the dubious one of “unconditional love”) “unconditional aggression”, reaching out to Christ in total unconditional surrender to Him and His terms. That is to “receive him” and “as many as received Him to them gave He power to become the sons of God” An analogy that occurs to me is a rugby game. The ball is passed to a player. He “receives it”: he does not merely “accept it”. He reaches for it, takes hold of it, aggressively and passionately he determines to make it his and to keep hold of it.
    Tozer was right but conditions now are worse and we must faithfully preach the true gospel

  26. Richard McCollam Aug 14th 2014

    Obviously Toser was a Man of God. Something the So called Church is in short supply of today. He preached the Gospel of Christ, today we have what the Apostle Paul called, “another Jesus” of whom a gospel has been formed that does not reflect the Teachings of Scripture.

    Much is said about Love in this day, a couple of the comments here reflect that. It is a hard thing for many to realize but Love is a force of Truth that can not be properly realized without God’s Hate. Scripture teaches that God Hates some things. A lot of people are unaware of that because they haven’t given themselves to His Word. They have not opened their worldly heart to Him. Understanding what God Hates, gives us a better view of ourselves, and the need of the Cross to be applied to our lives…. Mat 7:13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:

    Notice, there are 2 gates. Satan wants to make them one.

  27. Richard McCollam….right on word, full of truth from the scriptures!
    Reminds me of the scripture that says….King James Bible
    “God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day.” So if you do not think that God is angry with the sinner, then you lie against the word of God.

    That old too often lying American is powerless to save for we change the meaning of words to appease our old flesh that hates to come under subjection to the word of God. Notice that it says that “He judges the righteous.” I would hate to have him judge me and that I would lose rewards for changing the meaning of scriptures and Rev gives strong, strong warning to those who do. And…”the FEAR OF THE LORD IS THE BEGINNING OF WISDOM,”

  28. Something inside of me withered as I read Tozer’s words. I hear what he’s saying and understand that he is trying to stir us up, call us higher, right the wrongs. But as I hear some harsh messengers today, though their words may be true, the message may not be delivered in love which in my mind negates what they are saying. I have a hard time seeing Jesus sitting in a meadow yelling fiercely at His followers–if that were so, the little children He called up would have run far away.

    P.S. I’m not saying I know Tozer’s exact tone as he delivered this message. I like what he said “Let us preach the old cross and we will know the old power.” I see a true lack of faith and power in our congregation–very sad.

  29. This is the very thing they used against our Lord when He preached the hard truth. The “religious leaders” had him crucified for preaching so hard and the truth cut them to the quick, and they wanted to nash their teeth on Him. To them He was not nice to say that which pricked their evil hearts. Their flesh screamed in denial.

    The love of God contains not just what we consider love, but His loves includes His discipline, judgment, wrath, and more. We are a watered down bunch of powerless Christians who could hardly lead a sinner to salvation for we never give them the whole truth….just our watered down version.

    Sinners have a RIGHT to ALL THE TRUTH. Could that be why few are saved in the USA? No one wants half truths…even sinners. Sad indeed for America.

  30. Andrew Aug 14th 2014

    There is nothing even slightly harsh about Tozer’s words.

    It is simply plain truth.

    And it is desperately needed.

    Blessings,

    Andrew Strom

  31. Marilyn C Aug 14th 2014

    I was `saved,` over 50 years ago by the preaching of the cross, repentance, dying to self. And I have seen over the years that when I invited someone to a meeting they also heard the word & repented & accepted the Lord as their Saviour. (& gone on with Him)

    Today however I do not try to bring people to public meetings as they are not ready for that. (& wouldn`t go anyway) This generation is further from the truth than 50 years ago. Thus I see the problem is that Christians are not discipled in how to reach out to others – except invite to a meeting.

    There is alot of Holy Spirit work needed to work `in the fields,` for it takes patience, understanding & reliance on the Holy Spirit to persevere with a few people over time, to show God`s love & mercy & work alongside. Crisis`s come in people`s lives & they are God given opportunities as people who have watched your life & trusted you then are willing to reach out to the Lord & surrender to Him.

    Let us continue to learn of Him & not grow weary in our labors.

  32. Hi Joyce,

    Honesty I think many tend to fall in to the trap of judgeing messages and messengers according to their perception of love.
    They see God as love only which is idolatry…. love is just one aspect of the character of God.
    How you feel based assesments are very subjective and can lead astray…. I hear constant defences of false teaching from false teacher fans that the person has a good heart.
    Well only God knows the heart of a man, and only God knows what they do in secret.
    You would be utterly shocked at some of the gross sin I have heard confessed by people you would think as highly godly.
    Its a sober remainer that only by the grace of God go I and to keep your eyes on Jesus and the word.
    Portraying Jesus as Love I believe comes from the de gendering of Him in these latter days
    Takeing away His manhood … feminiseing Him…means people will no longer see both the Son of God and Man in one but rather a non gender love guru who brings no offense.
    This sutle deception has being going on for along time now but it is 7totally from satan … intended to mock Holy Spirit boldness that is given to all believers as seen on the day of pentecost (which empowers all for the purpose of speading the real gospel).
    I know this will be a huge shock for many to hear but Jesus is a Man and the Son of God
    Start to examine some of the things you have heard and seen over the years and you will begin to see how much the de-man-nizeing of Jesus ( as I call it) has happened.

    God bless,

    Grant Sutton
    [email protected]

  33. So true Grant and thanks for sharing such precious word. Like the religious leaders who demanded that Jesus be crucified, how bold they were. And it is time for us to stand in the face of evil and the devil and be bold and courageous as our Lord and the Paul’s and even ones like James. The Christians today do not want to even think about what the words James said to us. There is that scripture that says….”Quit ye like men.” Actually a lot of men today are de-man-ized…..femenized…..weak. God needs again REAL powerful men who will stand and declare ALL THE REAL TRUTH….ALL OF IT. Oh, we would then see sinners saved and Christians brought from their weakness to boldness.

    Yes indeed, you are right on concerning that command. We need to stand up and know and do not mistake Jesus for One who was weak, but one who was meek. Meekness is NOT WEAKNESS. He is the all powerful mighty Man, glorious Man of all Men….ALL MAN AND YET ALL GOD. Wow!
    Blessings!

  34. Marilyn C. – you say: “…for it takes patience, understanding & reliance on the Holy Spirit to persevere with a few people over time, to show God`s love & mercy & work alongside. Crisis`s come in people`s lives & they are God given opportunities as people who have watched your life & trusted you then are willing to reach out to the Lord & surrender to Him…”

    I could quote all your post and agree with it :-) however we (my wife and I) can relate to your life experience in the above.

  35. Marilyn C Aug 15th 2014

    Hi Roger,

    Glad to chat with you again. How`s the land of the long white cloud? And so glad you and your wife are finding the same in the Lord, re; reaching out to others in the power of the Holy Spirit through the every day.

    Hi Joyce,

    You so rightly said, ” a lot of men today are ….femenized…weak..”
    Part of that I would say is the wrong teaching on the symbol, `the bride.` When men are told to `come to Jesus & be part of His bride,` no wonder this generation is not sure what gender they are……etc

    We as the BODY of Christ need to put aside` it`s all about us,` & as you & Grant point out we need to know the Lord more & focus on who HE is.

    `…grow up in all aspects into Him, who is the Head, even Christ.` (Eph. 4: 15)

  36. His Truth is marching on Aug 15th 2014

    In the flesh we always miss the mark, on the one hand be too wrapped up in grace forgetting the fear of the Lord, or on the other hand being stirred up in religious self-righteous fervor forgetting love. Seems like we’re still going around that old grace vs. judgment mountain. But Jesus did not “demand” anyone to follow Him, He BID them. He is a Shepherd with both a rod and staff, not a drill sergeant.

    Only the Holy Spirit can prepare a heart, draw, convict, reveal and save, only He knows what any individual needs. I would rather depend on HIM not on any preconceived ideas of what somebody else says people need to hear.

    Who here wants to be the first to go up to a prostitute sobbing her heart out in an alleyway and growl at her to “bow before God’s stern displeasure and acknowledge herself worthy to die”. Really?? Such lofty high-sounding words aren’t they in theory… except they sound like they belong in a stain-glassed cathedral not in a real life alleyway.

    Isn’t it high time we stopped thinking in a mindset of religious meetings preaching to the choir ad nauseum from our comfortable pulpits before an audience of fawning admirers, and get back to the gospel of leaving the ninety and nine. Maybe then the Holy Spirit would come back, because in my opinion that’s the bottom line biggest problem with the church. But since He has left the building, it just seems like good sense to follow Him where He goes.

  37. 100% Zululander Aug 15th 2014

    Few have stated their suprise at so few posts on such a subject.
    I find it a terribly sad subject because tozer is so right. What can we add but a few more blows, stomp on the church a little more, shout aloud it’s failings.
    It’s just so so sad and were so perfect with no fault, doing the job wonderfully jewels in Gods crown as we shout down at the failings of the church with voices that will encourage no one, help no one & bear no good fruit except the satisfaction that we have publicly voiced our displeasure at the churches failings about which were doing nothing. I know this because if we truly loved the church we wouldn’t be critisizing it because we would be burdened & praying fervently believing our prayers to be answered.
    So so sad

  38. His Truth is marching on Aug 15th 2014

    Understand what you’re saying Zululander but keep in mind that we are in the end of days in the falling away, only so many years of tears and praying and warning and then comes the time to shake the dust off and move on, and “if none come with me, still I will follow”. We are not stomping on and criticizing, but what some of us are doing with our words is trying to get across the reality of the situation, while at the same time separating from her with our words…….and inviting whosoever will to do likewise before it is too late. Because the ‘whosoever won’t will’, are as we speak being given over and swept up in the mystery Babylon last days global new age false church. It’s worse than sad!

    Leave the ninety and nine to go seek the lost, that is stuck in my mind today……..is it a coincidence that the number nine is symbolic of judgment?

  39. Hi Zululander and HisTruthIsMarchingOn,

    I’ll speak for myself now and not others on this blog.
    Whow… I think that if you walk into a current western church today that you are likely to be preaching to the converted on a really high percentage basis.
    And yes the Gospel is about going into the world.. a big amen from me…. oopps …. could the world be attending church regulary?
    There is a radical difference between what we term the church today and what the Bible shows is the Body of Christ.

    How long do you stay in the prayer closet before God sends you out? ..surely cloistered nuns and monks in the monastry arent makeing a comeback.
    Fear of man rather than the Fear of God will always suppress and downplay the Truth and the Truth tellers, driveing them into no mans land (by the way a lot of the monastries have internet access).
    The Truth will set people free.

    Oh the point about talking with a prostitute in the comments above …. Jesus shows us perfectly in His account of what He did and what should teach us.
    He shows all standing by that they are sinners “let he who has not sinned cast the first stone” He did not include Himself in that of course because He is without sin.
    He asks the woman where are her accusers (have you thought of the parallel of this and when Jesus shows up for a person and what happens with the accuser Satan).
    She then realises they have gone… Jesus then having just saved her life doesn’t condem her but clearly says “GO AND SIN NO MORE”.
    If we have been saved by Him we are to do the same…. having been empowered by Him to overcome sin.
    Sin and repentence has become a dirty word to those that are filthy, if you proclaim a “Go and sin no more ” gospel prepare to be called unloveing… its pretty much only a repentant sinner the knows the difference.
    To him who is forgiven much will love much.

    God bless and may we “go and sin no more”.

    With love in Christ,

    Grant Sutton
    [email protected]

  40. Hi,

    correction to the above…
    “you are not like to be preaching to the converted.”

    God bless,

    Grant Sutton
    [email protected]

  41. Hi,

    Gosh I really have to proof read when useing a touch tablet in a hurry.
    Again… I meant to say that you are not likely to be preaching to the converted on a high percentage basis when in the church now days.

    regards,

    Grant Sutton
    [email protected]

  42. Isn’t it shocking when you use spell check far to much and go to a device that does not have it.

  43. His Truth is marching on Aug 16th 2014

    :) I’m afraid technology is making us illiterate nowadays…kids don’t even know how to handwrite with a pen any more, much less spell.

    The churches are filled with those who profess Christ, that is not the same as the lost. Even if they aren’t born again, they are in a bit different category than the lost……….and that category might be called hypocrites, I believe.

    And yes of course Jesus told them to go and sin no more, but He spoke with love and gentleness, as the occasion called for, and didn’t wag a self-righteous angry finger in the face of a trembling woman who just narrowly escaped terrible shame and a painful frightening death. He saved His rebukes for the Pharisees.

  44. Andrew Aug 16th 2014

    The 7 churches of Revelation – should Jesus not have rebuked them then??

    -Andrew

  45. GET READY!
    Jeremiah 15:21, “Therefore I will teach them— this time I will teach them my power and might. Then they will know that my name is the Lord.

  46. His Truth is marching on Aug 16th 2014

    Maybe we are interpreting admonishment as rebuke at times….”Go and sin no more” is not a rebuke. The sick need a doctor, not an executioner as the article seems to suggest. That’s all I’m trying to say. Jesus came not to condemn but to save. Time enough for rebuke and chastisement as they grow out of infanthood and mature, but I’m talking about the lost here. Seems to me infants and children are first of all born and then need nurture and admonition.

    Jesus did not rebuke the adulterous woman, she was condemned and as good as dead already, and He saved her. There was no need of rebuke but compassion…my God!…Jesus was interceding on her behalf. The stone throwers even had a change of heart by what He said and wrote in the sand. He was even gentle with them……..but powerful in the Holy Spirit. Remember He was always walking and speaking in the Spirit, not of His own.

    I mean no disrespect, but I honestly do not see the Holy Spirit in that article, but a man, well-meaning though he may be. Unless it is confusing what the lukewarm need along with the lost, two different kinds of needs. If we really want pure “old time religion”, and I do, then we need to go much further back than the 18th or 19th century, all the way back to the 1st century. That’s how old we need it, because after that it had all become tainted very quickly….remember Paul said what would happen as soon as he was gone, that wolves would come in. We have plenty enough to go on with the scriptures alone, if only we get a hold of it aright with God’s help and see it for what it actually is. And I’m not saying I have it all aright, I just know this does not seem aright.

  47. Hi all,

    I have rcvd an email that my in one of my comments featured in this thread is wrong.. my comment being.
    “God is not love, love is just one of the many expressions of God….He has righteous anger…. He even hates… He judges….He loves”.
    They sight NKJV 1John 4:8 and 1 John 4:16 which says “God is love” as correction which are both excellent quotes.
    I wrongly assumed that when reading the whole of my comment in context the reader would understand that was meaning He is more than love, I would have been better to say “God is not only Love” and stand corrected.
    By way of defence I do say further on in further comment in this thread th
    “They see God as love only which is idolatry…love is just one aspect of the character of God”

    I

  48. Thanks for the correction J.

    God Bless,

    Grant Sutton
    [email protected]

  49. Hi,

    I think Tozer’s article is a just reflection on the state of the sin appealing gospel we still see being preached today.
    Come and be changed is part of the hope we have in Christ that isn’t commonly heard today.
    If we see ourselves as inherently good then we have no need of Him.
    God tells us the heart of man is deceitfully wicked and that their is no one good but God…. one of the greatess barriers to the gospel is the age old excuse of ” I am a good person”.
    Part of Tozers appeal is that he tries to point to the great reformers of the past and the message they preached which brought lasting fruit in the lives of its hearers as a factual basis in support of his comment.
    As the Lord says you know a tree by its fruit….. wheres the holiness and by that I mean the righteousness of God not self righteousness being produced today by comparison.
    We live in a world where the unsaved can and do mock the sin being openly displayed by those who would call themselves christian…. we all know that won’t excuse the mocker before God.
    I beg the question of whom or what is the stumbling block?.
    Seems to me that the modern “God loves you and takes you as you are” gospel is failing.
    Just as a parting note … I read an article quoteing statistics taken by a large well known seeker sensitive Church whom surveyed their members as to whether they had been involved in sexual sin in the last few months…. well over 30% replied yes (and I do mean well over, and I assume that is only from the ones that were truthful).

    God bless,

    [email protected]

    PS …. I am still waiting for the tired old statement “hate the sin but love the sinner” to appear in the thread.
    Maybe it wont come up because seperateing sin doesn’t matter as much to many any more…. they major on seeing those who advocate seperation from sin as not motivated by love thinking it as hate for people.What a contridiction.

    We are living in the days when the love of many will go cold and it is.

  50. ValleyAnt Aug 17th 2014

    Concerning rebuke vs. admonishment, Tozer’s article, and what some like Grant and His truth is marching on have said about those, Tozer wrote:

    “God has set His hallmark of approval upon this message from Paul’s day to the present. Whether stated in these exact words or not, this has been the content of all preaching that has brought life and power to the world through the centuries.”

    “Whether stated in these exact words or not, this has been the content.” People carry the same message differently. Paul showed a lot of parental admonishment in his epistles; John showed a lot of parental love in his; but both preached the same message. Tozer probably got angry or upset in his messages before, but God is the One who justifies and condemns. Jesus admonished the woman caught in adultery not to sin; He didn’t rebuke her. (Therefore, as His truth is marching on said, there is a difference between rebuke and admonishment and a time and place for each one.)

    John the Baptist preached a fiery message, but even when he began to wonder if Jesus really was the Messiah, Jesus didn’t rebuke him by saying, “Oh John of little faith (now, that’s a rebuke, not an admonishment). If anyone should know who I am, it’s John”; rather, He told John’s disciples to admonish John this way: “Go back and [remind] John what you hear and see… And blessed is the man who is not offended on account of Me” (Matt. 11:6). Then He immediately began to approve John as a godly minister to everyone there. (Matt. 11:7-19.)

    Tozer has of course been angry before in his messages; but “the Lord looks on the heart” and knows the reason, the motive, the cause, the justification. Some people say that everything has to be said ‘in love’ or else people won’t receive the message. My question in regard to this kind of reasoning is “what is your definition of love?” I believe that around 90% of people who think like this have no idea how to define either godly or human love but only selfish love. To “speak the truth in love” today often means “tell people in a way that doesn’t upset them”. After this selfish love has been scrutinized and really defined, you realize that the “speak the truth in love” doctrine really means “If what you have to say is going to offend people, then don’t say it at all.” But that wasn’t Jesus’ example. When Christians get upset at messages not delivered in ‘love’, they should remember that Jesus did and said in His day much ‘less loving things’– like ‘causing a scene’ in God’s temple itself (who would do that today), telling the religious leaders “You are of your father the devil” when they said that God was their Father, calling the religious Jews ‘murderers’ when they had killed no one, and calling them ‘hypocrites’ when they often kept the Law to the letter.

  51. Hi Valley Ant,

    I agree with your comments, very worth while.
    This issue needs robust discussion.
    We all need to be provoked to think more heavenly minded over the serious task of speading a full Gospel and our testimony.
    Spreading the Gospel is challengeing in so many ways but is the duty of every christian not just a few.

    Rev 12:11 “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.”

    God bless,

    [email protected]

    “I think spreading the love is a bit more than buttering up people, half of them can’t tell you the difference between spreads….. now they all want low salt marg…… man made, tastes almost the same and supposed to be better for you until proven otherwise..” GWS

  52. His Truth is marching on Aug 17th 2014

    Let’s just be careful that our theology isn’t a back-lash against error, because that is just more error. Jesus did not ever need to resort to foaming-at-the-mouth religiosity, no, because He relied on the power of the Holy Spirit.

  53. Andrew Aug 17th 2014

    I see no foaming at the mouth here, His Truth.

    Not an ounce,

    Blessings,

    Andrew Strom

  54. His Truth is marching on Aug 17th 2014

    Reading the gospels and then reading that article, I do not see the same Jesus, no, it is religiosity I see. A man with some “correct“ information, but not the spirit of Christ in those words.

    Where does Jesus DEMAND abnegation of the old life before the new life can be received. Jesus did not demand, He said IF you love me, IF you would be my disciples………….and left it for the Holy Spirit to work on the soul.

    Here once again…..“ Let him not seek to make terms with
    God, but let him bow his head before the stroke of God’s stern
    displeasure and acknowledge himself worthy to die“…..is that how you minister to suffering souls who already live in misery and find living painful. We`re not being realistic here, we`re being religious. I`m very sorry that is not obvious to some. The sick and the suffering came to Jesus and He healed them all, making no demands, and whosoever will turned to follow Him……God`s Spirit working on their souls.

    His rebuke is in no way hysterical, it is more like a very sharp, swift, authoritative sword, calm and precise…….He used it to take the Pharisees and erring religious leaders to task because it is true that such are judged more strictly. H

  55. His Truth is marching on Aug 17th 2014

    …He wasn`t ever wrestling with flesh and blood but with the powers and principalities.

    I don`t object to everything that was said but I don`t go along with that being in the spirit of Christ my saviour.

  56. Hi,

    I don’t think you would of like some of the sermons preached in the the great awakening…. “Sinners in the hands of an angry God” by J Edwards.. etc is probably one example
    However hundreds of thousands of people turned to the Lord when hearing them.

  57. His Truth is marching on Aug 17th 2014

    I don’t know anything of what has been preached the past two thousand years, brother, I only know what is preached in the bible. That is our plumbline….nothing, nor nobody else, no, not anything else! God is gracious and powerful and works sometimes even in the midst of man’s mistakes, so we can’t even go by that. Gifts and callings are without repentance. Not only that but there are counterfeit workings as well. So for me I only look at the bible. Let’s go and read the gospels and see what Jesus was/is like. It’s easy to forget if we haven’t read them for a while.

  58. Richard McCollam Aug 17th 2014

    Rebuke vs Admonition…? Interesting perspective. Reminds me of Johnathan Edwards preaching for some reason. ‘Sinners in the hands of an angry God’…

    Haggling over the Spirit in which something is said often reveals that an admonition to one may be a rebuke to another. My experience has been, that regardless of how softly, lovingly, or sweetly a Word is given, it’s the one who has been resistant to “Admonition” that howls the loudest and accuses a harsh spirit was given in the rebuke. To that individual, a matter of fact admonition is perceived as a Rebuke.

    The matter of fact Word of Revelations for example is either an Admonition or if you please a Rebuke which should be realized before the Tree falls where it will lay.

    Rev 2;12–23 gives us God’s perspective, Shows us His Loving Heart, in reference to some of what is being discussed on this thread.

    We are people on a Narrow Path, or maybe the Wide…and we need to deal with our self righteousness just like we need to deal with our Spiritual (and or physical) Adultry / Fornication. Thanks be to our Heavenly Father that we have His Holy Spirit to Teach us all things.
    Psalms 119:165 Tremendous Word Ps 119

  59. Richard McCollam Aug 17th 2014

    Just a little thought here. In John 8:11 Jesus was Dealing with the issue of prostitution, well, really that was only the prop, he was dealing with the issue of sin. Many today would accuse Jesus of making an unreasonable demand on this lady, and many try to erase the Lords Words with a focus on “neither do I condemn thee”…stopping short of “go and sin no more”.. back to the abnegation of the old.

    We just need to consider here that “go and sin no more”, was actually spoken here to a sinner, accused, not even, “Born Again”. How could a Loving Jesus say such a thing to her? Knowing the struggle she would face with keeping his Demand. Can we even comprehend knowing the struggle that we have had?

    But! Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by a word from God Rom 10:17 Can we understand, that Jesus knew, that this woman was given in those 5 words, the authority over her sin? I cannot believe, that Jesus would demand, she “go and sin no more” if he knew she would be unable to do so. Like the Word “come” that he spoke to Peter before he stepped out of the boat….

    Hearing a Word that God speaks, and receiving it, empowers us to do what the Word demands. Rejecting his Word..well that’s a different subject. God help us to be so in tune with you that we hear, and only speak that which you have said, knowing that it is only Your Word that brings forth True Faith.

  60. 100% Zululander Aug 17th 2014

    Well said richard. Love is also expressed & received in many ways by different people. It’s affected by upbringing, character & nature & a host of other things & more so in different cultures.
    One size don’t fit all.

  61. Andrew Aug 17th 2014

    “Abegnation” is simply another word for ‘Repentance’.

    It was always the first demand of Jesus and all the apostles.

    Abegnation of your sins. Repentance of your sins.

    First step.

    Blessings to all,

    Andrew Strom

  62. His Truth is marching on Aug 18th 2014

    Jesus taught, instructed, exhorted, admonished and bid us to repent and live a life of holiness, purity, and righteousness, forsaking sins. “Come follow me” is a bidding.

    Let’s read the gospels afresh, even just the red letters, His words, and try to discern Jesus’ spirit. I was doing that last night in Matthew. Jesus was a Lamb, but mighty in the Spirit.

    Am thinking it might be profitable to talk about why we are so lacking that same Holy Spirit in these days, and hope we get to do that sometime, if the Lord so wills.

  63. Richard McCollam Aug 18th 2014

    Repentance? Ah yes. A word lost, like the Book of the Law in King Josiahs time. Won’t it be earthchanging if the So called Church can find that word some place in the clutter of their business?

  64. Richard McCollam Aug 18th 2014

    100% Zululander, Yes, we often times can’t wrap our finite mind around the out reach of our Heavenly Father. He sent His Son to redeem all Peoples from the grasp of sin. I have noticed in my limited exposure to various cultures, that The Holy Spirit tailors the presentation to fit the need. Never does the Holy Spirit compromise with gods of those cultures, or religions of man. I have also noticed that upon receiving God’s Word, the results are always the same. Upon true Repentance, people, guided by God’s Spirit begin their journey through the narrow gate Mat 7:13

    Blessings

  65. His Truth is Marching…. you speak of our lacking that same Holy Spirit that was present in the early ‘church’..?

    Perhaps we have neglected who those members of the early church were, and how they were truly united in Christ Jesus our risen Lord.

    Paul spoke to the Romans of wild branches being grafted into the ‘olive tree’, alongside those natural branches who are also Messianic in belief.

    We, corporately, need to recognise this truth – there is some healing needed – maybe then the Body of Christ (as a whole) will move in His power..?

  66. His Truth is marching on Aug 18th 2014

    Roger, from what I understand both wild and natural branches are grafted into the same Tree and have the exact same access to the Holy Spirit, God is no respecter of persons. Though I’m not sure if that speaks to what you’re saying or not, unless you would like to elaborate on that a bit more…

  67. His Truth… yes – sort of :-) certainly both have access to the Holy Spirit.

    Messianic Jews are the natural branches – they remain on the tree, (Jesus disciples for example) we who are Christian (Messianic Gentiles) are the wild branches who are grafted in. The non-believing Jews are the broken off branches.

    …to clarify further: for some 1700 years the majority who call themselves Christian, have either ignored this truth, or, aren’t aware of it – the majority belief (then and now) is replacement theology, of which there are a variety of forms (e.g. church replaced Israel, and, church is new Israel)

    The true body is comprised of both Messianic Jew, and Messianic Gentile (Christian) – this is the remnant, the Ecclesia, the complete Body of Christ – and as we know, once ‘born-again’ there are neither Jew or Greek in Christ. (Gal.3, Col.3)

    Perhaps when we are again truly unified, when His Body is complete, then we will see the Holy Spirit power that so many understand to be lacking at this time…

  68. His Truth is marching on Aug 19th 2014

    Roger, our heart and prayer is that the Jews may be saved. We are one with anyone who is a follower of Christ, Jew and Gentile alike.

    When we come to the Lord we all become a new creature, it doesn’t matter whether Jew, or African, Chinese, American, English, Indian, South American or Irish. We don’t make much of what we were before being found by the Lord, what matters is Christ. But we owe the Jews a debt……and that debt is of course to give them the gospel (to the Jew first), but after that to help the Jewish believers with our substance where they need it as it says in Romans 15:27, because we became partakers of their spiritual things.

    But look at the Jewish Roots movement in its present form. It’s not helping anyone to walk in the Spirit, on the contrary the groups that are embracing this that I know of are walking in a lot of error and flesh. So something is wrong with this somewhere.

    But I don’t understand what you mean about when His Body is complete. Are you saying that there needs to be more Jewish believers in the Body to round it all out, or something along those lines? I would need to see some scriptures on that. But we can never do wrong in saving Jewish souls irregardless. I don’t think we need a particular reason to do so. We are in the end of days, time is running out, and the gospel is about the saving of souls, and that by itself is plenty reason enough. Myself I believe it might possibly have been God’s intention to draw our attention to the Jews in these last days, for that very purpose of evangelizing, but which got “mishandled” by flesh and the devil of course is busy making hay with it.

    No, I’m pretty sure there are other reasons why the church is lacking the Holy Spirit. And it isn’t because someone wasn’t angry enough in how they presented us with the gospel, either. Jesus only got angry with the hypo-critical leaders and moneychangers in His Father’s house. Just look in the gospels and see if that isn’t the case.

  69. Darren Sargent Aug 19th 2014

    The fact that Andrew has continued to leave this forum open when another is also open leads me to believe that he hopes the discussion will continue.That, hope against hope, we might discover something significant. It is in the face of this hopelessness that I will comment, and hopefully God will say something to us all.

    Tozer’s comment is not an article; it is an indictment that carries the full weight of God’s wrath and legal judgement. In his preaching of and writing down of this message he establishes on earth God’s demand and requirement from us. We have heard it and therefore all of us are now accountable. We may quibble with the messenger; we may assassinate the messenger, but we are still under its indictment. The bush contuinues to burn to this very hour, and until we deal with the issue in our own hearts as to the True and false gospels and being able to weigh the difference between the two, the bush will continue to burn.

    Firstly, we must understand that the light that is shed here by Tozer is done so by a prophet and we must understand the office of prophet is quite unlike any other of the ministries. A teacher never lead the Jews out of Egypt and through the desert – it was a prophet! A prophet was the first to shed his blood in obedience to God (Abel). The prophet anointed the kings of Israel. Need I go on?

    My point is that the office of prophet is unique. The Church is built upon them: prophets first, apostles last. Indeed, the testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of Prophecy. Why so unique? They carry not just a message that they are passing on like an errand boy; it is not just a duty they discharge, but particular revelations about particular circumstances gives way to a perpetual way of ‘seeing’ as God sees. He speaks from God as he sees as God does. He speaks as God, as he sees like God. His heart is unified with Him. So much so, that the prophet becomes the message; the word is made flesh in him like no other, for the words in his mouth are truth: they carry and convey the very heart of God at a moment in time. They express God’s tone and demeanour. The prophet is the mouth piece of God and there are no other ministries like this; it is unique. Until we grasp this, we will continue to misunderstand Tozer. He speaks; he speaks today out of the cloud of witnesses to anyone who will listen and hear.

    Open your ears and your hearts.

  70. His Truth is marching on Aug 19th 2014

    After more than 10 years of reading virtually nothing but the bible, I found the tone in that article/piece a bit of a shock to the system. I guess the bible is wrong then and I should instead immerse myself in the writings of men.

    We don’t have to serve God with reference to what anybody is doing wrong………shouldn’t we just keep our eyes on the true, looking neither to the right nor the left? Or did God appoint that more scripture is being written in our day? You go ahead then and be their first to tell a badly abused runaway boy living on the streets that he should bow his head before God’s stern displeasure and acknowledge himself worthy to die and shake your jowls while you’re at it. But I guess the poor kid already knows that without our help. The hard part is convincing him that God so loved him.

    I don’t know what more I can say, truly. I do know the answer is not to the right or the left, it’s in the Spirit.