Masquerades #3: Mysticism

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Tim Lane and Paul Tripp, in their book How People Change, have a chapter in the beginning called The Gospel Gap in which they identify Christian externalism as a false replacement for gospel-shaped, Christ-confident, and change-committed Christianity.  There are 7 things that surface which deceptively replace authentic Christianity that the next few blog posts will share as I quote from them:

3. Mysticism

Christine careens from emotional experience to emotional experience. She is constantly hunting for a spiritual high, a dynamic encounter with God. Because of this, she never stays with one church very long. She is more a consumer of experience than a committed member of the body of Christ. Yet in between the dynamic experiences, Christine’s faith often falls flat. She struggles with discouragement and often finds herself wondering if she is even a believer. Despite the excitement of powerful moments, Christine isn’t growing in faith and character.

Biblical faith is not stoic; true Christianity is dyed with all the colors of human emotion. But you cannot reduce the t\gospel to dynamic emotional experiences with God. As the Holy Spirit indwells us and the Word of God impacts us, most of the changes in our hearts and lives take place in the little moments in life. The danger of mysticism is that it can become more of a pursuit of experience than a pursuit of Christ. It reduces the gospel to dynamic emotional and spiritual experiences.

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