Trenchant Truths

Verbosity is not to be confused with thought content. Ready phrases may be but empty words.

L.E.F. is editor of the Ministry.

A true revival cannot be worked up; it must be prayed down.

The difference between a spiritual ministry and a formal, intellectual one is not of degree, but of kind.

There is a sharp distinction between the pull of the Spirit of God upon human hearts, and emotional, psycho­logical appeals that move with a hu­man dynamic. Let us beware of com­mon fire in the holy service of God.

Is it orthodoxy or " orthopraxy " ? Nay, but both. Neither is full and complete without the other, and neither is antagonistic to the other. It is the divorcement of one from the other that brings conflict, grief, and vari­ance.

It is infinitely better to spend our time searching reverently and dili­gently for the full truth of God, than to expend our energies in contending over moot, minor points on which, in most cases, we have never made even a personal investigation of sources. We must put first thitigs foremost.

The parents of the child Jesus lost Him while about the temple and holy things. A preacher, too, can lose the radiant, transfiguring presence of Christ out of his life even when talk­ing and promoting the things of the church. When such a tragedy occurs, he would better, as in the prototype, leave everything until " sorrowing " he find Him. And, thank God, He is not far from every one of us.

Verbosity is not to be confused with thought content. Ready phrases may be but empty words.

We as workers need to differentiate between necessities and luxuries. We face a peril right on this point. We may be so intent on enjoying the avail­able conveniences of the times that it will absorb our energies, and sacrifi­cial giving will stagnate in our lives.

Plucking off the old dead leaves of a giant tree is a most unsatisfactory task. Nature has a better way. The springtime sap loosens them, and down they drop without laborious effort. Similarly it is a weak makeshift sim­ply to attack the outward things of the life,— dress, coiffure, deportment, rec­reations, reading, and so forth. Rather, let us work for the inflow of a new regenerating life current. Then the old relics of the past life will drop off of their own weight. Of course, clear instruction is essential, but in its related place.

Evidence may be either sound or superficial. And we should distinguish sharply between the two. Arbitrary assertion should never be confused with adequate proof, plausible talk with sound reason, nor abuse with argument. A probability is not proof. Let us keep a clear perspective on these fundamental distinctions.

It is entirely possible for a preacher to give a full series of " lectures " and never preach the saving gospel of Christ, convincing the intellect with­out converting the souls of his hearers. There was a time in the early days of this movement when members of established churches who accepted the mes­sage were largely converted folks, and the chief need was the correction of doctrinal errors. But that day has passed, never to return. Modernistic rationalism, materialistic evolution, and humanistic philosophy have cut the nerve of spiritual life in the popu­lar churches about. The gospel is be­coming an unknown quantity. The masses of their membership are un­converted. We must meet the changed conditions of the day with the full everlasting gospel in the setting of Revelation 14 to meet the situation confronting us. It is not belief in the credo, but in the living Christ, that saves.

The advent movement is even more remarkable for what it is destined to do than for what it has already done. This message will close with a blaze of publicity that will be dazzling. The Spot light of hostile world attention will be focused upon it. It will be searched through and through, and will be the object of the fiercest antagonism that the world has ever beheld. Blessed the corollary truth that it is the object of God's supreme affection, and He will lead it through to triumph.

L. E. Froom

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L.E.F. is editor of the Ministry.

October 1928

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More Articles In This Issue

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The New and Living Way

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The Message of Joel (Continued)

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The Association Forum

A round table discussion on the indoctrination of candidates.

Vegetarianism and the Eighth Commandment

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Studies in Historical Theology

It will help greatly to understand the tremendous difficulties which confronted the Christian church during the first three centuries, if a short his­torical sketch is given describing the actual condition of the Roman Empire as it was when Paul and his associates preached the gospel even in Caasar's household.

Bible Workers Exchange

Our monthly bible workers exchange.

Editorial Postscripts

Closing thoughts from the Ministry back page.

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