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Alfred Winder
Alfred Winder

[PDF] The Pursuit Of God - Illustrated Edition

[Pg 6]My acquaintance with the author is limited tobrief visits and loving fellowship in his church. ThereI discovered a self-made scholar, an omnivorous readerwith a remarkable library of theological and devotionalbooks, and one who seemed to burn the midnight oilin pursuit of God. His book is the result of long meditationand much prayer. It is not a collection of sermons.It does not deal with the pulpit and the pew butwith the soul athirst for God. The chapters could besummarized in Moses' prayer, "Show me thy glory,"or Paul's exclamation, "O the depth of the riches bothof the wisdom and knowledge of God!" It is theologynot of the head but of the heart.

[PDF] The Pursuit of God - Illustrated Edition

We pursue God because, and only because, Hehas first put an urge within us that spurs us to the pursuit."No man can come to me," said our Lord, "exceptthe Father which hath sent me draw him," and it isby this very prevenient drawing that God takes from usevery vestige of credit for the act of coming. The impulseto pursue God originates with God, but the out[Pg 12]workingof that impulse is our following hard afterHim; and all the time we are pursuing Him we arealready in His hand: "Thy right hand upholdeth me."

You and I are in little (our sins excepted) whatGod is in large. Being made in His image we havewithin us the capacity to know Him. In our sins welack only the power. The moment the Spirit has quickenedus to life in regeneration our whole being sensesits kinship to God and leaps up in joyous recognition.That is the heavenly birth without which we cannotsee the Kingdom of God. It is, however, not an endbut an inception, for now begins the glorious pursuit,the heart's happy exploration of the infinite riches ofthe Godhead. That is where we begin, I say, but wherewe stop no man has yet discovered, for there is in theawful and mysterious depths of the Triune Godneither limit nor end.

Let me exhort you to take this seriously. It is notto be understood as mere Bible teaching to be stored[Pg 24]away in the mind along with an inert mass of otherdoctrines. It is a marker on the road to greener pastures,a path chiseled against the steep sides of the mount ofGod. We dare not try to by-pass it if we would followon in this holy pursuit. We must ascend a step at atime. If we refuse one step we bring our progress toan end.

If we would indeed know God in growing intimacywe must go this way of renunciation. And if weare set upon the pursuit of God He will sooner or laterbring us to this test. Abraham's testing was, at the time,not known to him as such, yet if he had taken somecourse other than the one he did, the whole historyof the Old Testament would have been different. Godwould have found His man, no doubt, but the loss toAbraham would have been tragic beyond the telling.So we will be brought one by one to the testing place,and we may never know when we are there. At thattesting place there will be no dozen possible choices[Pg 31]for us; just one and an alternative, but our whole futurewill be conditioned by the choice we make.

The interior journey of the soul from the wilds[Pg 36]of sin into the enjoyed Presence of God is beautifullyillustrated in the Old Testament tabernacle. The returningsinner first entered the outer court where heoffered a blood sacrifice on the brazen altar and washedhimself in the laver that stood near it. Then through aveil he passed into the holy place where no naturallight could come, but the golden candlestick whichspoke of Jesus the Light of the World threw its softglow over all. There also was the shewbread to tellof Jesus, the Bread of Life, and the altar of incense,a figure of unceasing prayer.

This veil is not a beautiful thing and it is not athing about which we commonly care to talk, but I amaddressing the thirsting souls who are determined tofollow God, and I know they will not turn back becausethe way leads temporarily through the blackened hills.The urge of God within them will assure their continuingthe pursuit. They will face the facts however[Pg 45]unpleasant and endure the cross for the joy set beforethem. So I am bold to name the threads out of whichthis inner veil is woven.

Our pursuit of God is successful just because Heis forever seeking to manifest Himself to us. The revelationof God to any man is not God coming from adistance upon a time to pay a brief and momentousvisit to the man's soul. Thus to think of it is to misunderstandit all. The approach of God to the soul orof the soul to God is not to be thought of in spatialterms at all. There is no idea of physical distance involvedin the concept. It is not a matter of miles butof experience.

Now if faith is so vitally important, if it is anindispensable must in our pursuit of God, it is perfectlynatural that we should be deeply concernedover whether or not we possess this most precious gift.And our minds being what they are, it is inevitablethat sooner or later we should get around to inquiring[Pg 87]after the nature of faith. What is faith? would lieclose to the question, Do I have faith? and woulddemand an answer if it were anywhere to be found.

The pursuit of God will embrace the labor ofbringing our total personality into conformity to His.And this not judicially, but actually. I do not here referto the act of justification by faith in Christ. I speak ofa voluntary exalting of God to His proper station overus and a willing surrender of our whole being to theplace of worshipful submission which the Creator-creaturecircumstance makes proper.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

For over seventy years, A. W. Tozer's The Pursuit of God has been helping Christians understand what it means to worship the Almighty in spirit and truth. Now, here is a visually rich edition for seekers who want to slow down and contemplate God in 31 separate devotional readings. Tozer's wise words are accompanied by graphically paced images that lead to a natural flow of personal discovery. This illustrated exploration of a timeless classic allows the reader to encounter divine truths anew and share them with others.

We are one human family whatever our national, racial, ethnic, economic, and ideological differences. We are our brothers and sisters keepers, wherever they may be. Loving our neighbor has global dimensions in a shrinking world. At the core of the virtue of solidarity is the pursuit of justice and peace. Pope Paul VI taught that if you want peace, work for justice.1 The Gospel calls us to be peacemakers. Our love for all our sisters and brothers demands that we promote peace in a world surrounded by violence and conflict.

107. Many places are experiencing a dearth of vocations to the priesthood and consecrated life. This is often due to a lack of contagious apostolic fervour in communities which results in a cooling of enthusiasm and attractiveness. Wherever there is life, fervour and a desire to bring Christ to others, genuine vocations will arise. Even in parishes where priests are not particularly committed or joyful, the fraternal life and fervour of the community can awaken in the young a desire to consecrate themselves completely to God and to the preaching of the Gospel. This is particularly true if such a living community prays insistently for vocations and courageously proposes to its young people the path of special consecration. On the other hand, despite the scarcity of vocations, today we are increasingly aware of the need for a better process of selecting candidates to the priesthood. Seminaries cannot accept candidates on the basis of any motivation whatsoever, especially if those motivations have to do with affective insecurity or the pursuit of power, human glory or economic well-being.

203. The dignity of each human person and the pursuit of the common good are concerns which ought to shape all economic policies. At times, however, they seem to be a mere addendum imported from without in order to fill out a political discourse lacking in perspectives or plans for true and integral development. How many words prove irksome to this system! It is irksome when the question of ethics is raised, when global solidarity is invoked, when the distribution of goods is mentioned, when reference in made to protecting labour and defending the dignity of the powerless, when allusion is made to a God who demands a commitment to justice. At other times these issues are exploited by a rhetoric which cheapens them. Casual indifference in the face of such questions empties our lives and our words of all meaning. Business is a vocation, and a noble vocation, provided that those engaged in it see themselves challenged by a greater meaning in life; this will enable them truly to serve the common good by striving to increase the goods of this world and to make them more accessible to all. 350c69d7ab


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