A person once called me to ask this question: "Mr. Tozer, do you think a person who is really a Christian can hurt another Christian"" There is no easy answer-but I had to reply: "Yes, I think so." Why is it that a man can be on his knees one day, praying earnestly, and the next day be guilty of offending or injuring another Christian" I think it is because we are halfway between heaven and hell. It is because the light-and the shadow-fall upon us. The best answer is that we are being saved out of all these contradictions we find in our lifetime. Perhaps on this earth we will never be able to comprehend fully the awful, terrible price the Lord of all beauty paid to gain our redemption; to save His people from the ugliness of sin. If you do not know Him and worship Him, if you do not long to reside where He is, if you have never known wonder and ecstasy in your soul because of His crucifixion and resurrection, your claim of Christianity has little foundation!
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One of the most beautiful descriptions of our Savior to be found anywhere is that given by Isaiah in the 53chapter of his prophecy: "He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground" (verse 2).
Those who have at any time been close to the soil will see at once a young shoot just pushing through the ground and will feel the exquisite precision of the word "tender" when applied to it. The delicate sprout appears to be mostly water, held together one scarcely knows how, and so brittle that it will snap asunder at the slightest touch. Only after the passing of several days does it toughen up enough to endure external pressure without damage.
While a newborn babe is not as fragile as the tender plant just emerged from the soil, the likeness is too plain to miss, and the prophet spoke well when he compared the one to the other. The helpless, crying human thing is vulnerable from a thousand directions and is wholly dependent for its very life upon parents, neighbors and friends. No one can pick up a day-old baby and not sense the pathetic frailty of it—a barely conscious blob of sweet, perishable life only now arrived from the ancient void of nonexistence.
So our Lord came to the manger in Bethlehem that first Christmas morning, not out of nonexistence, but from eternal pre-existence; not as a son of man only but as Son of Man and Son of God in the fullest sense of both terms; a tender plant and a root out of a dry ground.
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