I recently finished a book called The Law of Revival, by Witness Lee. Whenever I read something, I always intend to do a sort of book review here—reflect on the work as a whole, respond to it, and pass on some good quotes. But usually time slips away, and then a whole month will pass until I finally sit down to write.
In lieu of a full blown review, and since I’ve been in Brazil this week, I’m adopting a format I saw at the Desiring God site. They do something called “Twenty Quotes from _____.” I like it because it cuts straight to the chase and gets the reader up close and personal with the book.
The Law of Revival is basically an extended exposition and application of Song of Songs chapter 1-3, tracking the ups and downs of our pursuit of Christ. So here are 28 quotes from The Law of Revival.
No other book in the Bible shows the stages of pursuing the Lord as clearly as Song of Songs. p. 7
The inner feeling of dissatisfaction is the green light in our spiritual journey… These feelings are not accidental. They are a sign, telling us that it is time for a new pursuit. p. 11
If we do not have new beginnings, we will inevitably fall into formal service and religious worship. p. 11
Our consecration and dealings with the Lord are continuous and should get deeper. p. 13
Our work and service should be according to the experience in Song of Songs. We should not do a habitual work that merely maintains the status quo. p. 15
We should not do a work that seemingly touches people but does not change them. p. 15
Believers who fall into subjectivity tend to become shallow. If we desire to be deep, we must have objective visions. p. 21
If we remain in the past, we will also lose the Lord’s presence, because He cannot remain in the past. p. 24
The problems in our heart, in our family, in our environment, and in the church are mountains and hills that cannot be overcome merely by our enjoying the Lord’s sweetness and abundance. These problems require that we have a vision of resurrection and see the transcendence of our resurrected Lord, who is undeterred by any problems. p. 25
The only way to have a revival, a new beginning, is to be open. p. 27
Revivals come from within us, because the resurrected Lord is now the Spirit indwelling us. The Spirit is filled with all the riches of Christ and dwells even in the most desolate believer. Hence, the power of revival does not descend from heaven, from an objective position. The power is already dwelling in us. p. 27-28
Being open is the basic principle for allowing the Holy Spirit to work in us. The more we are reserved and closed, the less likely we are to receive grace. p.28
Genuine growth in life is gained in the cycle of being revived, feeling unsatisfied for a period of time after the end of a revival, and then being revived again. p. 34
Our knowledge and experience of Christ are based on the knowledge of our weaknesses. If we do not learn more concerning our weaknesses, it will be hard for us to know more concerning Christ. p. 37
In order to genuinely know Christ, we must first discover our weaknesses. The weaknesses that we discover will reflect a certain characteristic of Christ. We can then experience and gain Christ according to this particular characteristic. p. 37
It is good that we have weaknesses, for our weaknesses enable us to see the characteristics of Christ. p. 38
We should not continually look at our weaknesses, for they are manifested so that through them we would see Christ. p. 39
Revival is a law in the spiritual life of a Christian by which we can grow gradually in the Lord. p. 41
Our spiritual life grows through repeated revivals. p. 44
In the New Testament age Christ is everything to us. If we are down, He is in ascension; if we are deadened, He is resurrection; if we are weak, He is strong; and if we are in darkness, He is light. Every weakness that we possess enables us to see a particular virtue of Christ. p. 48
Remaining in our problems means that we do not know the law of revival. p. 49
[Sometimes believers] can read only a short portion of the Bible and ponder over it briefly in the midst of their chaos. I can testify that reading the Bible in this way often issues in special enlightenment from God and yields unexpected results. p. 52
We must be tried and broken in order to become dependable. p. 52
When the Lord places us in the prison of trials, He gives us a vision of Himself as a gazelle and a young hart. We may be imprisoned behind walls, but He is not obstructed by mountains or hills. p. 59
By the Lord’s grace, one day we will arrive at a stage when others will say that we are going down, but we will say, “No, we are rising up,” or others will say that it is winter, but we will say, “No, the winter is past, the flowers are blooming, and the birds are singing.” This indicates that we know resurrection. p. 62
We must experience the Lord’s death and resurrection one day at a time and one experience at a time. p. 63
Our spiritual experiences have not been arranged in order for us to remain whole. They are for us to be broken and for our human element to be put to death so that we would have a deeper knowing of Christ’s death and His resurrection. p. 63
There is no room for wishful thinking in our spiritual journey. Many things are contrary to our desire, cause us grief, and make us disheartened. This is our path, this is where we grow, and this is also where the New Jerusalem is produced. p. 63
As I was reading every point, I am stirred to say amen! Makes me want to read the book now.. I’ve heard of the 7 stages of pursuing the Lord, but I was just refreshed that there is this law that governs our spiritual growth. How I need a new revival!
“In the flow, in the flow, in the flow, in the flow..”
This is the third time I’ve read this. And I can’t help but share the psalming in my heart after enjoying your post.
Wow, this was really good. Thanks for the share 🙂
I love the 20 quotes idea. Makes me want to order this book.
These are great quotes, Kyle. You definitely whet my appetite to read the whole book. I’m impressed that the Christian life is cyclical, and that revival is a law. Spiritual dissatisfaction is God’s way of bringing us onward in the growth in life, so when we’re dissatisfied and feel spiritually dry we should be encouraged simply to open to the Lord and allow Him to bring us onward in our journey with Him.
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Thanks for the 28 points. We have just read them with a group in our home. So good
This book is amazing! It stirs faith in me. Highly recommend it.