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Lowell Brueckner

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Why We Must Think Rightly...

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Chapter One: Why We Must Think Rightly About God

A. W. Tozer
Lord God Almighty, not the God of the philosophers and the wise but the God of the prophets and apostles; and better than all, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, may I express Thee unblamed? They that know Thee not may call upon Thee as other than Thou art, and so worship not Thee but a creature of their own fancy; therefore enlighten our minds that we may know Thee as Thou art, so that we may perfectly love Thee and worthily praise Thee. In the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us. The history of mankind will probably show that no people has ever risen above its religion, and man’s spiritual history will positively demonstrate that no religion has ever been greater than its idea of God. Worship is pure or base as the worshiper entertains high or low thoughts of God.

For this reason the gravest question before the Church is always God Himself, and the most portentous fact about any man is not what he at a given time may say or do, but what he in his deep heart conceives God to be like. We tend by a secret law of the soul to move toward our mental image of God. This is true not only of the individual Christian, but of the company of Christians that composes the Church. Always the most revealing thing about the Church is her idea of God, just as her most significant message is what she says about Him or leaves unsaid, for her silence is often more eloquent than her speech. She can never escape the self-disclosure of her witness concerning God.

Knowledge of the Holy... Preface

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 PREFACE

True religion confronts earth with heaven and brings eternity to bear upon time. The messenger of Christ, though he speaks from God, must also, as the Quakers used to say, “speak to the condition” of his hearers; otherwise he will speak a language known only to himself. His message must be not only timeless but timely. He must speak to his own generation.

The message of this book does not grow out of these times but it is appropriate to them. It is called forth by a condition which has existed in the Church for some years and is steadily growing worse. I refer to the loss of the concept of majesty from the popular religious mind. The Church has surrendered her once lofty concept of God and has substituted for it one so low, so ignoble, as to be utterly unworthy of thinking, worshipping men. This she has done not deliberately, but little by little and without her knowledge; and her very unawareness only makes her situation all the more tragic.

The low view of God entertained almost universally among Christians is the cause of a hundred lesser evils everywhere among us. A whole new philosophy of the Christian life has resulted from this one basic error in our religious thinking.

The Root of the Righteous

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                           Chapter seven:
A. W. Tozer


By A. W. Tozer

An odd little passage in the book of Ecclesiastes speaks of “an old and foolish king, who will no more be admonished” (4:13).

It is not hard to understand why an old king, especially if he were a foolish one, would feel that he was beyond admonition. After he had for years given orders he might easily build a self-confident psychology that simply could not entertain the notion that he should take advice from others. His word had long been law, and to him right had become synonymous with his will, and wrong had come to mean anything that ran contrary to his wishes. Soon the idea that there was anyone wise enough or good enough to reprove him would not so much as enter his mind. He had to be a foolish king to let himself get caught in that kind of web, and an old king to give the web time to get so strong that he could not break it and to give him time to get used to it so that he was no longer aware of its existence.

Regardless of the moral process by which he arrived at his hardened state, the bell had already tolled for him. In every particular he was a lost man. His wizened old body still held together to provide a kind of movable tomb to house a soul already dead. Hope had long ago departed. God had left him to his fatal conceit. And soon he would die physically too, and he would die as a fool dieth.

The Great Tribulation

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The Book of the Prophet Daniel

“But you, Daniel, shut up the words and seal the book, until the time of the end.”
Daniel 12:4

Chapter 12:1-13                                  The Great Tribulation  

1.  "At that time shall arise Michael, the great prince who has charge of your people. And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time. But at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone whose name shall be found written in the book. 
2.  And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. 
3.  And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever. 
4.  But you, Daniel, shut up the words and seal the book, until the time of the end. Many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase." 
5.  Then I, Daniel, looked, and behold, two others stood, one on this bank of the stream and one on that bank of the stream. 
6.  And someone said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the stream, "How long shall it be till the end of these wonders?" 
7.  And I heard the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the stream; he raised his right hand and his left hand toward heaven and swore by him who lives forever that it would be for a time, times, and half a time, and that when the shattering of the power of the holy people comes to an end all these things would be finished. 
8.  I heard, but I did not understand. Then I said, "O my lord, what shall be the outcome of these things?" 
9.  He said, "Go your way, Daniel, for the words are shut up and sealed until the time of the end. 
10.  Many shall purify themselves and make themselves white and be refined, but the wicked shall act wickedly. And none of the wicked shall understand, but those who are wise shall understand. 
11.  And from the time that the regular burnt offering is taken away and the abomination that makes desolate is set up, there shall be 1,290 days. 
12.  Blessed is he who waits and arrives at the 1,335 days. 
13.  But go your way till the end. And you shall rest and shall stand in your allotted place at the end of the days." 
                                    

The Antichrist

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The Book of the Prophet Daniel

“But you, Daniel, shut up the words and seal the book, until the time of the end.”
Daniel 12:4

Chapter 11:36-45                                       The Antichrist

36.  "And the king shall do as he wills. He shall exalt himself and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak astonishing things against the God of gods. He shall prosper till the indignation is accomplished; for what is decreed shall be done. 
37.  He shall pay no attention to the gods of his fathers, or to the one beloved by women (or the desire of women, KJV, ASV). He shall not pay attention to any other god, for he shall magnify himself above all. 
38.  He shall honor the god of fortresses instead of these. A god whom his fathers did not know he shall honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. 
39.  He shall deal with the strongest fortresses with the help of a foreign god. Those who acknowledge him he shall load with honor. He shall make them rulers over many and shall divide the land for a price. 
40.  "At the time of the end, the king of the south shall attack him, but the king of the north shall rush upon him like a whirlwind, with chariots and horsemen, and with many ships. And he shall come into countries and shall overflow and pass through. 
41.  He shall come into the glorious land. And tens of thousands shall fall, but these shall be delivered out of his hand: Edom and Moab and the main part of the Ammonites. 
42.  He shall stretch out his hand against the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 
43.  He shall become ruler of the treasures of gold and of silver, and all the precious things of Egypt, and the Libyans and the Cushites shall follow in his train. 
44.  But news from the east and the north shall alarm him, and he shall go out with great fury to destroy and devote many to destruction. 
45.  And he shall pitch his palatial tents between the sea and the glorious holy mountain. Yet he shall come to his end, with none to help him. 

The former verses of 33-35 are applicable to God´s true people at any time, who face the world and its temptations, right up to the time of the end. During the tribulation period, faithful Jews will appear and stand true to God. In verse 36, Gabriel suddenly switches from the story of one personality to another.  With verse 32, he brings the narrative of Antiochus Epiphanes to an end. In verse 35, he points to the time of the end and in the verses before us, he turns from the prototype, whose character in so many ways resembled his final counterpart, to the Man of Sin himself, the Antichrist. By the way, Antiochus Epiphanes, was not the original, given name of this Seleucid king of Syria, but was the name that he assumed, when he usurped the throne from the rightful heir. Epiphanes means God manifested, another detail, resembling the presumptive, blasphemous arrogance of the Antichrist, described in verse 36.