Sunday, August 17, 2008

Food for thought: A monstrous substitution

From The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozer:
There is within the human heart a tough, fibrous root of fallen life whose nature is to possess, always to possess. It covets things with deep and fierce passion. The pronouns my and mine look innocent enough in print, but their constant and universal use is significant. They express the real nature of the old Adamaic man better than a thousand volumes of theology could do. They are verbal symptoms of our deep disease. The roots of our hearts have grown down into things, and we dare not pull up one rootlet lest we die. Things have become necessary to us, a development never orginally intended. God's gifts now take the place of God, and the whole course of nature is upset by the monstrous subsitution.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

camen--
Thanks for this quote. It comes at a perfect time, for I am putting together a critque of the theology of Joel Olsteen. Although Mr. Olsteen speaks in a gentle, humorous, self-deprecating voice, and much of what he says is true, he mixes with the truth an exhortation to imagine, to claim, to command, to speak into existence, all of life's good things for oneself. Olsteen's words seem like fertilizer for this root Towzer is talking about.
--Susie

Carmen Andres said...

i so agree - and i think you get at the root of "gospels" like that.

in the margins next to that quote in my book is scribbled the name, Golum (the man-turned-creature from Lord of the Rings) and his catch-phrase, "my precious." i battle with my inner golum regularly and i loved how tozer gets at how deep and treacherous those roots can grow.