by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (selected by Frank Cumbers)
Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord
We often quote, "Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord"; and yet in practice we seem to rely upon the "mighty dollar" and the "power of the press" and advertising. We seem to think that our influence will depend on our technique and the program we can put forward and that it will be the numbers, the largeness, the bigness, that will prove effective!
We seem to have forgotten that God has done most of His deeds in the Church throughout its history through "remnants." We seem to have forgotten the great story of Gideon, for instance, and how God insisted on reducing the thirty-two thousand men down to three hundred before He would make use of them.
We have become fascinated by the idea of bigness, and we are quite convinced that if we can only "stage" (yes, that is the word!) something really big before the world, we will shake it and produce a mighty religious awakening. That seems to be the modern conception of authority.
All that, I suggest, is nothing but the old error into which the Church has fallen so repeatedly. For Hegel's dictum about history is as true of the church as it is of the world: "History teaches us that history teaches us nothing." We seem determined to go on repeating in this way the same errors and falling into the same pitfalls as our forefathers have ever done; ... the Bible teaches plainly and clearly that God's own method is always through the Spirit and His authority and power.
Authority, pp. 70-1
“Text reproduced from ‘A First Book of Daily Readings’ by Martyn Lloyd-Jones, published by Epworth Press 1970 & 1977 © Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes. Used with permission.”
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