We who preach the gospel must not think of ourselves as public relations agents sent to establish good will between Christ and the world. We must not imagine ourselves commissioned to make Christ acceptable to big business, the press, the world of sports or modern education. We are not diplomats but prophets, and our message is not a compromise but an ultimatum. A.W. Tozer
Therefore let God-inspired Scripture decide between us; and on whichever side be found doctrines in harmony with the word of God, in favor of that side will be cast the vote of truth. --Basil of Caesarea
Once you learn to discern, there's no going back. You will begin to spot the lie everywhere it appears.

I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service. 1 Timothy 1:12

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Is Contemplative Prayer Biblical?

“Too many describe the Christian life as tepid, while mustering up nothing more than a lukewarm enthusiasm for Christ.   Many feel God hasn’t come through for them and won’t until they do something.  Again we try to control God by making something happen and by earning points with Him.  We desire an experience, and since God isn’t doing anything, we initiate it ourselves.  Rather than giving up control and letting God do the work in our lives, we come up with man-centered, man prompted ideas and methods.  Brennan Manning calls it ‘grabbing a holt of God.’

“Are we unwilling to completely let go and let God?  Then we will never find that true, lasting satisfaction in our Christian lives.  All the meditations, all the self-help Christian books, all the lighting of candles are not going to make any lasting difference.

“Contemplative spirituality is nothing more than an attempt to fill that void with a man-made solution.  In essence, they are attempting to built a spiritual tower of Babel.  And as with all things man-made, it pales in comparison to what God can do.

“If contemplative prayer or other Eastern practices were sanctioned or blessed by the God of the Bible, why are there no stories of any Hindus or Buddhists coming to Christ by these methods?  Instead, we hear of Christians receiving revelations during contemplative prayer that all paths lead to God and that God is in all.  If those revelations were true, this would make the Cross unnecessary and, in effect, null and void.”

Brian Flynn, Running Against the Wind, p.176-177

I'd say that the answer to the headline question is unequivocally, "NO," and Christians should not be doing it.


Doug Evans said...

Totally agree! However when psudo-Christians tell me that all paths lead to God I answer them "Yes they do, then God decides who can stay with Him."

MyBulletinBoard said...

The folks I'm around don't seem to understand that mysticism/contemplative practices seek to establish a direct connection to God. They are actually by-passing Christ as our mediator and seeking extra-biblical revelation, denying the authority of Scripture. Talk about dangerous! . . . . Appreciate your blog.