Saturday, October 13, 2018

A.W. Tozer Was a Theological Minimalist

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Linda, on Mackinac Island
The apostle Paul was a minimalist. He wanted to know just one thing: Christ, and him crucified. 

Paul's minimalism shaped his leadership, and his view of the Church. The whole thing is about the formation of Christ, in us. (Galatians 4:9) Our inner formation affects our outward activity. First develop inside. Outside will follow.

A.W. Tozer has written:

"Every age has its own characteristics. Right now we are in an age of religious complexity. The simplicity which is in Christ is rarely found among us. In its stead are programs, methods, organizations and a world of nervous activities which occupy time and attention but can never satisfy the longing of the heart. The shallowness of our inner experience, the hollowness of our worship, and that servile imitation of the world which marks our promotional methods all testify that we in this day, know God only imperfectly, and the peace of God scarcely at all.

If we would find God amid all the religious externals, we must first determine to find Him, and then proceed in the way of simplicity."
–A.W. Tozer (The Pursuit of God, p. 17-18; emphasis mine)

Busyness, if it is to be relevant to God's purposes, must emerge out of the presence of God. First, be with God. Dwell in Christ. Then, as Christ instructs, do

The church is to be a movement that is presence-driven, rather than a mass of program-busyness that leave people too exhausted and time-worn to abide in Christ.

I develop Theological Minimalism in my two books:

Praying: Reflections on 40 Years of Solitary Conversations with God

Leading the Presence-Driven Church