In the classic, Why Revival Tarries, by Leonard Ravenhill (1907-1994), the main thesis is prayer, but there are some Bible engagement nuggets worth sharing. Thus this post.
Ravenhill was a 20th Century revivalist who rebuked, reproved and exhorted Christians to live righteously. His single-minded warnings and appeals sometimes shocked and alienated people. Folk either loved or hated him. Regardless of what people thought about him, the bigger issue is whether or not he spoke the truth. You decide. Here are some of the things he had to say about Bible engagement:
One of these days some simple soul will pick up the Book of God, read it, and believe it. Then the rest of us will be embarrassed.
With a stack of books beside us and marginal notes in Bibles for props, we have almost immunized ourselves from the scorching truth of the changeless Word of God.
There are only three classes of People in the world today: those who are afraid, those who do not know enough to be afraid, and those who know their Bibles.
We have millions of Bibles, scores of thousands of churches, endless preachers – and yet what sin!
We have adopted the convenient theory that the Bible is a Book to be explained, whereas first and foremost it is a Book to be believed (and after that to be obeyed).
The Holy Book of the living God suffers more from its exponents today than from its opponents! We are loose in the use of scriptural phrases, lopsided in interpreting them, and lazy to the point of impotence in appropriating their measureless wealth.
Let any man shut himself up for a week … with no books except the Bible, with no visitor except the Holy Ghost, and I guarantee … that that man will either break up or break through and out.
Most preachers are only echoes, for if you listen hard, you will be able to tell what latest book they have read and how little of the Book they quote.
There is a world of difference between knowing the Word of God and knowing the God of the Word.
Leonard Ravenhill, Why Revival Tarries, 1991.
© Scripture Union Canada 2015