Tag: Lordship of Christ

When Words and Deeds Conflict

A.W. Tozerby A.W. Tozer

If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. John 15:18–19

In the working out of God’s eternal purpose the society of the first Adam and the society of the last Adam, though utterly opposed, may for a while coexist, but not for long (Hebrews 12:26–27). The flesh may admire the spirit while refusing to go along with it, or it may misunderstand the spirit and believe that it is itself spiritual while actually sunk in corruption.

The latter, I believe, explains the present popularity of Christ in the world. The contradiction between Christ and unregenerate society is sharp and irreconcilable, but the contrast between society and its own mistaken conception of Him is scarcely noticeable. So the world can cherish its image of Christ and ignore His commandments without a qualm of conscience.

What should seriously concern us, however, is not that the world praises Christ without obeying Him, but that the church does. The men of this world go their way careless of the teachings of Christ, but in doing so they are consistent with their position. They have made no vows to the Lord nor taken His name upon them. But when a Christian ignores the commandment of Christ, he is guilty of sin doubly compounded. He violates holy vows, is guilty of rebellion against God and commits the grotesque sin of calling Jesus Lord with his words and denying His Lordship with his deeds.

by A.W. Tozer

Limiting Christ’s Lordship

A.W. Tozerby A.W. Tozer

Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not what I say?
Luke 6:46

One of the most incredible phenomena in the world today is the immense and universal popularity of Jesus Christ.

Yet the teachings of Christ are wholly contrary to the beliefs of the modern world. The spiritual philosophy underlying the kingdom of God is radically opposed to that of civilized society. In short, the Christ of the New Testament and the world of mankind are so sharply opposed to each other as to amount to downright hostility. To achieve a compromise is impossible.

We can only conclude that Jesus is universally popular today because He is universally misunderstood.

Everyone admires Jesus, but almost no one takes Him seriously. He is considered a kindly idealist who loved babies and underprivileged persons. He is pictured as a gentle dreamer who was naïve enough to believe in human goodness and brave enough to die for His belief. The world thinks of Him as meek, selfless and loving, and values Him because He was what we all are at heart, or would be if things were not so tough and we had more time to cultivate our virtues. Or He is a sweet, holy symbol of something too fine, too beautiful, to be real, but something which we would not lose nevertheless from our treasure house of precious things.

Because the human mind has two compartments, the practical and the ideal, people are able to live comfortably with their dreamy, romantic conception of Jesus while paying no attention whatsoever to His words. It is this neat division between the fanciful and the real that enables countless thousands of persons to say “Lord, Lord” in all sincerity while living every moment in flat defiance of His authority.

by A.W. Tozer