• Document: Why Revival Tarries. Leonard Ravenhill
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Why Revival Tarries Leonard Ravenhill FOREWORD GREAT industrial concerns have in their employment men who are needed only when there is a breakdown somewhere. When something goes wrong with the machinery, these men spring into action to locate and remove the trouble and get the machine rolling again. For these men a smoothly operating system has no interest. They are specialists concerned with trouble and how to find and correct it. In the kingdom of God things are not too different. God has always had His specialists whose chief concern has been the moral breakdown, the decline in the spiritual health of the nation or the church. Such men were Elijah, Jeremiah, Malachi and others of their kind who appeared at critical moments in history to reprove, rebuke, and exhort in the name of God and righteousness. A thousand or ten thousand ordinary priests or pastors or teachers could labour quietly on almost unnoticed while the spiritual life of Israel or the church was normal. But let the people of God go astray from the paths of truth and immediately the specialist appeared almost out of nowhere. His instinct for trouble brought him to the help of the Lord and of Israel. Such a man was likely to be drastic, radical, possibly at times violent, and the curious crowd that gathered to watch him work soon branded him as extreme, fanatical, negative. And in a sense they were right. He was single-minded, severe, fearless, and these were the qualities the circumstances demanded. He shocked some, frightened others and alienated not a few, but he knew who had called him and what he was sent to do. His ministry was geared to the emergency, and that fact marked him out as different, a man apart. To such men as this the church owes a debt too heavy to pay. The curious thing is that she seldom tries to pay him while he lives, but the next generation builds his sepulcher and writes his biography, as if instinctively and awkwardly to discharge an obligation the previous generation to a large extent ignored. Those who know Leonard Ravenhill will recognise in him the religious specialist, the man sent from God not to carry on the conventional work of the church, but to beard the priests of Baal on their own mountaintop, to shame the careless priest at the altar, to face the false prophet and warn the people who are being led astray by him. Such a man as this is not an easy companion. The professional evangelist who leaves the wrought up meeting as soon as it is over to hurry him to the most expensive restaurant to feast and crack jokes with his retainers will find this man something of an embarrassment, for he cannot turn off the burden of the Holy Ghost as one would turn off a faucet. He insists upon being a Christian all the time, everywhere; and again, that marks him out as different. Toward Leonard Ravenhill it is impossible to be neutral. His acquaintances are divided pretty neatly into two classes, those who love and admire him out of all proportion and those who hate him with perfect hatred and what is true of the man is sure to be true of his books, of this book. The reader will either close its pages to seek a place of prayer or he will toss it away in anger, his heart closed to its warnings and appeals. Not all books, not even all good books come as a voice from above, but I feel that this one does. It does because its author does, and the spirit of the author breathes through his book. A. W. Tozer PREFACE Here is my simple offering of loaves and fishes - just plain diet, lacking the ice and spice of the wedding cake. Like a sailor I once saw pounding a soldier "because," said the sailor, "he insulted my mother," so my Lord is insulted and His Church slighted. And, believe me, under this double injury, I smart. The Church has many adversaries. Can my sword sleep, then, in my hand? Never! I estimate that in the English edition alone, a million people read each issue of the "Herald of His Coming." Some of the chapters in this book are articles in old Heralds and have been read by millions. (I am neither ashamed nor proud of this). There are a dozen other "Heralds" in Spanish, German, French, etc. Enough to say that through this paper, along with the "Alliance Witness" and other periodicals, God has seen fit to make non-academic essays a means of blessing to many. I pray that you gentle readers may be helped by them. My sincere thanks to my esteemed friend and spiritual counsellor, Dr. A. W. Tozer, for his kindness in writing the foreword. My unstinted praise to Mrs. Hines and her daughter, Ruth, for their fine work in typing and correcting the manuscripts. (All profits from this book go to overseas missions, May we live with eternity's values in view.) Leonard Ravenhill WITH ALL THY GETTING, GET UNCTION No erudition, no purity of diction, no width of mental outlook, no flowers of eloquence, no grace of person can atone for lack of

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