Truly Spiritual 

Author: T. Austin-Sparks

I have told you all this so that you may find your peace in Me. You will find trouble in the world - but, never lose heart, I have conquered the world! (John 16:33 Phillips)

When the spiritual stands to confront the merely formal, traditional, nominal and "natural," then there is going to be trouble. This is not now merely the reaction from the world: it is the reaction from religion. I would go further, and say it may be the reaction from Christianity. There is a very great difference between formal, traditional, nominal, "natural" Christianity, on the one side, and spiritual Christianity, on the other; a great deal of difference. So much so, that this also becomes a battlefield - the battlefield of a lot of trouble.

Leave formalism alone, and everything will go on quite quietly. Leave traditionalism alone - that is, the set order of things as it has always been; that framework of things as it has been constituted and set up and established by man; that Christianity which is the fixed, accepted system of things - and you will escape a great deal of trouble. But seek to bring in a truly spiritual order of things, and trouble arises at once. And YOU are the trouble maker! The truth is that the trouble lies in the existing condition, the situation, the state; but it is only brought out by your action. And so spiritual men and women, and spiritual ministry, are called "trouble makers," because the two things cannot go on together. That is where Israel was. They had the traditions, they had the oracles, they had the ordinances, they had the testimonies; they had the forms, they had the system - they had it all; but, in the days of the prophets, there was ever this vast gap between the "externals" and "internals" of life in relation with God. The heart is far removed from the lips. The spiritual reality is not found in the formal. You may have it all - but then bring in the truly spiritual meaning of things, and trouble begins in that very realm. It is the trouble which arises when what is external and traditional comes into conflict with something which is truly spiritual.

THEODORE AUSTIN-SPARKS (1888-1971) left all his writings freely to the body of Christ. There is no copyright on any of T. Austin Sparks work. It was his heart that they be shared freely. You are free to use his material but they can never be sold for profit. If sharing his material please don’t change any wording to keep the original words intact, and please ascribe them to the author. Many of His books can be downloaded for free at the Austin Sparks Library, and Immanuel Church offer to send anyone who desires his print books for free.

Bible verses: John 16:33
Topics: Spiritualness

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