Francis Schaeffer – Quotes from True Spirituality
… you are not Christ’s disciple, in the sense of following him, if this is not your way of life: rejected and slain daily! – 28
Here we are told that Christ really lives in me, if I have accepted Christ as my Savior. In other words, we have the words of Jesus to the thief of the cross, ‘Today thou wilt be with me in paradise.’ Christ can say, ‘Today thou wilt be with me in paradise,’ and mean it. To die is to be with the Lord. It is not just an idea, it is a reality. But at the same time, Christ, the same Christ who gives the promise just as definitely, that when I have accepted Christ as my savior, he lives in me.
“To die is to be with the Lord. It is not just an idea, it is a reality.”
They are equal reality. They are two streams of present reality, both equally promised. The Christian dead are already with Christ now, and Christ really lives in the Christian. Christ lives in me. The Christ who was crucified, the Christ whose work is finished, the Christ who is glorified now, has promised (John 15) to bring forth fruit in the Christian, just as the sap of the vine brings forth the fruit in the branch.
True Christian Mysticism
Here is true Christian mysticism. Christian mysticism is not the same as non-Christian mysticism, but I would insist that it is not a lesser mysticism. Indeed, eventually it is a deeper mysticism, for it is not based merely on contentless experience, but on historic, space-time reality – on propositional truth. One is not asked to deny the reason, the intellect, in true Christian mysticism. And there is to be no loss of personality, no loss of the individual man. In Eastern mysticism – for which the West is searching so madly now that it has lost the sense of history, of content, and the truth of biblical facts – there is always finally a loss of the personality. It cannot be otherwise in their framework. You will remember the story of Shiva, who is one of the manifestations of the Everything. He came and loved a mortal woman. Shiva put his arms around this woman in his love, and immediately she disappeared and he became neuter. This is Eastern mysticism. It is grounded in the loss of personality of the individual. Not so Christian mysticism. Christian mysticism is communion with Christ. It is Christ bringing forth fruit through me, the Christian, with no loss of personality and without my being used as a stick or a stone, either. – 54-55
Hudson Taylor said, “The Lord’s work done in the Lord’s way will never fail to have the Lord’s provision.” …The Lord’s work done in human energy is not the Lord’s work any longer. It is something, but it is not the Lord’s work. – 64
But the fact that Christ as the bridegroom brings forth fruit through me as the bride, through the agency of the indwelling Holy Spirit by faith, opens the way for me as a Christian to begin to know in the present life the reality of the supernatural. This is where the Christian is to live. Doctrine is important, but it is not an end in itself. There is to be an experiential reality, moment by moment. 69-70
Preaching the gospel without the Holy Spirit is to miss the entire point of the command of Jesus Christ for our era. In the area of “Christian activities” or “Christian service,” how we are doing it is at least as important as what we are doing. – 71-72
Today’s Call to Walk by Faith
Eternity will be wonderful, but there is one thing heaven will not contain, and that is the call, the possibility, and the privilege of living a supernatural life here and now by faith, before we meet Jesus face to face. – 72
Salvation is unity. When I accepted Christ as my Savior, when my guilt was gone, I returned to the place for which I was originally made. Man has a purpose. In this second half of the twentieth century, one is constantly confronted with the question, “What is the purpose of man – if man has any purpose?” And to that question twentieth returns a great silence. But the Bible says that man has the purpose of loving God with all his heart, with all his soul, with all his mind. And this “loving” is not meant to be vague or “religious,” in the modern sense, but a genuine communication with God: the finite person, thinking and acting and feeling, being in relationship with the infinite – not a bare infinite, but an
“when I accept Christ as my Savior… I am immediately in a new and living relationship with each of the three persons of the Trinity”
infinite who is a personal God, and therefore communication is possible. This is the purpose of man, though lost through the fall. And when I accept Christ as my Savior, the guilt that has separated me from God, and from the fulfillment of my purpose, is removed. I then stand in the place in which man was made to stand at his creation. Not just in some far-off day, in the millennial reign of Christ, nor in eternity, but now I am retuned to the place for which I was made at the beginning. I am immediately in a new and living relationship with each of the three persons of the Trinity. – 75-76
“The great distinction of a true Christian is the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. How careful should he be, lest anything in his thoughts or feelings would be offensive to the Divine Guest.!” – 82