- File Size: 1428 KB
- Print Length: 90 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1977806945
- Publisher: Faithful Life Publishers; 1 edition (January 10, 2017)
- Publication Date: January 10, 2017
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B01MZB8GAS
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
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#88,984 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
- #104 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Religion & Spirituality > Christian Books & Bibles > Christian Living > Prayer
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|Digital List Price:||$4.99|
|Print List Price:||$7.90|
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Knowledge of the Holy: The Attributes of God Kindle Edition
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Top customer reviews
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Despite this and a few other minor quibbles, I was greatly edified by the above-titled book, and do recommend it. In his book, Tozer states from the outset that, since not everyone is able, due to education, time, etc., to read and understand the deeper studies in theology and Scriptural exegesis, he is going to pare down the concepts into a short, and easy to understand, volume.
The format he uses is to begin each chapter by describing an attribute of God. He then uses that chapter to do two things. First off, he deals with explaining said attribute, and second, Tozer ties the concepts and chapters together by making clear that each of these attributes are constantly present in the Godhead. God is perfectly every single one of His attributes for eternity.
Another theme of Tozer's is that not only does God deserve our praise, it is to our own good to praise Him. He doesn't need us or our praise. At least, He doesn't need us or our praise in the sense of the word need we normally understand. He only "needs" us because He chose to do so for our own good, so we could have the joy of serving and praising Him. In reality, He doesn't need us, and His infinite love would be perfectly satisfied without us, if He chose. His love directed towards us (and any need that goes with us) is his choice and His gift to us. If you think of this, you can see the, as CS Lewis puts it in one of his works, "intolerable compliment" of His choosing to love and desire our best.
Yet we repay the God of the Universe Who does this for us in what way? With disdain, a careless disregard, so forth. We do not give him the great glory He calls us to give Him, that He DESERVES, and that would be our greatest joy to give Him. We must remedy this, both to avoid sin and to experience the joy of God and growing in the knowledge of Him and His holiness.
On a few issues Tozer is wrong, in my opinion. I think that he views the past too rosily, in terms of devotion to God. I think that this problem with seeing God in the wondrous, awed way we ought so to do is a long-standing one. That is why, just my opinion here, the Scriptures so frequently speak of the necessity of doing so. I also think that some of his criticisms of every day life are due to the concern over greater technology and the fear of "losing ourselves" to it, just as such concerns exist today. They were much greater back then, and other writers of the time dealt with these concerns. Tozer's personal pet peeves leaked into this topic, methinks.
As well, Tozer seemed to view the idea of understanding God in language as somehow wrong. I can see his point that no words can adequately describe His Majesty, but to use the words is not wrong. God Himself told us to use certain language and terms to describe Him in His Word. He would not have done so had He considered such descriptions so beneath Him as to be a bad or potentially sinful thing.
In a similar vein, Tozer had a strange habit of viewing arguments for God's existence as so beneath Him that they were almost sinful against God. Then he turned around himself and used logic to argue for God's attributes. How does that work?
Lest these few criticisms make one think that I got nothing from the work, or thought it a bad effort, I reiterate my earlier praise for this brief book, and how much it has edified me. While I would disagree with Tozer on a few things, and think that this issue is a perennial problem with Christians instead of a recent one, I agree with his overall thesis. The Church (and thus individual Christians) are in a dark place of not trusting and loving God as we should. We must take God and the things of God more seriously, experience an increased awe of God, and begin to truly worship and praise Him. The only way for the Church to do this is to have the individual Christians that comprise the Church make a conscious choice to do this. Let us take up this necessary, worthy, right, and joyful challenge.
And a very heavy one as well. The author makes clear what's at stake on page 2, writing, "It is my opinion that the Christian conception of God current in these middle years of the twentieth century is so decadent as to be utterly beneath the dignity of the Most High God and actually to constitute for professed believers something amounting to a moral calamity". And he goes on, "All the problems of heaven and earth, though they were to confront us together and at once, would be nothing compared with the overwhelming problem of God: That He is; what He is like; and what we as moral beings must do about Him".
But how can man, the creature, put words around his Creator? How do we describe the indescribable?
Tozer quotes the Spanish mystic Miguel de Molinas, "We think more loftily of God, by knowing that He is incomprehensible, and above our understanding, than by conceiving Him under any image, and creature beauty, according to our rude understanding".
The means the author finds to talk about that which is really beyond words is through a discussion of the attributes of God. Attributes, in this context, are "whatever God has in any way revealed as being true of Himself". And so in talking about these attributes of God, God Himself is not limited or contained; no claim is made as to their completeness. In this way Tozer finds the path to use words in describing God without diminishing Him through the limits of language.
The revealed truths that he takes us through are God's triune nature, His self-existence, His self-sufficiency, His eternity, His infinitude, His immutability, His omniscience, His wisdom, His omnipotence, His transcendence, His omnipresence, His faithfulness, His goodness, His justice, His mercy, His grace, His love, His holiness, and His sovereignty.
What did God say when Moses asked how He should be referred to? He said, "This is what you are to say to the Israelites, `I Am has sent me to you'".