austin sparks, book ministry, christian ministry, daily devotional

November 17

17 NOV – Meeting the Lord in the Word

The all-governing thing with God is His self-manifestation, and that can only be along the lines and by means of spiritual life. There is no other way of manifesting God, God becoming really known; only along spiritual lines. There is not one of us who knows the Lord Jesus and has that knowledge in any other way. We do not have a physical knowledge of Jesus. We have come into our knowledge of Him in a spiritual way, and every fuller bit of knowledge of Him is spiritual, essentially spiritual, and God cannot be known in any other way. The Lord cannot be manifested in any other way. There is that mystic, strange, inexplicable something which is extra, which is the Lord. I mean, it is not teaching. There may be a great mass of teaching, and perfectly right and true teaching, a great fullness of truth, and yet there may just be lacking that something, that extra something, that mystic something that leaves it as truth, a bulk of truth, and does not get you anywhere. When you have got it all, it has not got you anywhere. It is not something objective at all, objective in the way of truth imparted, teaching given, doctrine held.

It is not a matter of work done for the Lord, in the Name of the Lord, things that we are doing — even the matter of leading others to accept Him, as an engagement, as a form of activity, of work. It is not the constituting or the constructing of something for the Lord in the same way as we would go to work to build up some other institution in the world and call it by this or that name; it is not that. These may be means, but if there is not that extra, as I call it, that mystical something, if it is just an objective thing, it has failed in its divine value. That something, that extra, is the Lord. The Lord has been imparted, and all teaching and truth which does not impart the Lord — not just knowledge, truth and doctrine, material, however right in its place — if it does not carry with it the Lord and impart the Lord and result in people who are alive, who are sensitive, who are open, who are prepared, being able to say, Yes, the Word was good, but the Lord met me in the Word — if it is not that extra, it has failed. If any of the work that is being done, all the activities, all the business, with the best of motives and a great zeal and devotion, whole-heartedness, if the upshot of it is not that the Lord has come in, it is the Lord, something extra to the Word, you have come into touch with the Lord; it has failed.

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