Friday, 13 May 2016

Awaiting the breath of the Spirit

Kuyper’s famous Lectures on Calvinism were delivered at Princeton in 1898. The last lecture bore the title “Calvinism and the Future,” and its closing words were these:

‘The quickening of life comes not from men: it is the prerogative of God, and it is due to His sovereign will alone, whether or not the tide of religious life rise high in one century, and run to a low ebb in the next….
Now the period in which we are living at present, is surely at a low ebb religiously. Unless God send forth His Spirit, there will be no turn, and fearfully rapid will be the descent of the waters. But you remember the Aeolian Harp, which men were wont to place outside their casement, that the breeze might wake its music into life.

Until the wind blew, the harp remained silent, while, again, even though the wind arose, if the harp did not lie in readiness, a rustling of the breeze might be heard, but not a single note of ethereal music delighted the ear. Now, let Calvinism be nothing but such an Aeolian Harp,—absolutely powerless, as it is, without the quickening spirit of God—still we feel it our God-given duty to keep our harp, its strings tuned aright, ready in the window of God’s Holy Sion, awaiting the breath of the Spirit.’

Abraham Kuyper, Calvinism: Six Stone Lectures (New York: Fleming H. Revell, [1899]), 274–75.

(Quoted from Pentecostal Outpourings: Revival and the Reformed Tradition- Robert Davis Smart)

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