Leonard Ravenhill, perhaps unknown to the great majority of my readers, was an extraordinary preacher and firebrand of the 20th Century. Now with the Lord, his life and ministry were very radical and made a deep impact on many souls seeking spiritual renewal and revival. He had this keen gift from God to bless (and also offend) people from every camp within Christendom! He was able to identify with many spiritual streams within Christianity and to bridge generation gaps. If you want to provoke your heart to seek God more passionately, then spend some time reading and listening to the material at www.ravenhill.org.
The following is an excerpt from his most well-known book. I am reprinting this here because it shows the radical freedom a man who is dead and raised in Christ has. Ravenhill is writing of the effects that the “exchanged life” had on the Apostle Paul:
He had no ambitions for himself – and so had nothing to be jealous about.
He had no reputation – and so had nothing to fight about.
He had no possessions – and therefore nothing to worry about.
He had no ‘rights’ – so therefore he could not suffer wrong.
He was already broken – so no one could break him.
He was ‘dead’ – so none could kill him.
He was less than the least – so who could humble him?
He had suffered the loss of all things – so none could defraud him. (Leonard Ravenhill in Why Revival Tarries)
Reading a list like the one above often results in feelings of condemnation to those who (like me) often see ourselves far from this ideal. But there’s an error to the idealistic approach. The exchanged life is no ideal. It’s a spiritual reality and tangible inheritance available now to every real Christian. It cannot be earned or forced. It simply is.
More on this subject in the next post.