There have been few books published in the last century that have impacted the lives of more Christians than Oswald Chambers My Utmost for His Highest. Compiled from sermons, teachings and messages he preached over the course of his life—which was largely dedicated to ministry—the book was published after his death, but has kept his legacy alive for generations.
Part of the appeal of Chambers’ teachings and his famous devotional is his ability to capture deep, profound biblical truths in ways that are easy to comprehend, but force you to wrestle through them to truly understand.
On the anniversary of his death, here’s a look back at 12 of Chambers’ most profound quotes:
“Faith never knows where it is being led, but it loves and knows the One who is leading.”
“We tend to use prayer as a last resort, but God wants it to be our first line of defense. We pray when there’s nothing else we can do, but God wants us to pray before we do anything at all.”
“Prayer is not getting things from God, that is the most initial stage; prayer is getting into perfect communion with God; I tell Him what I know He knows in order that I may get to know it as He does.”
“Doubt is not always a sign that a man is wrong; it may be a sign that he is thinking.”
On Being Ordinary
All of God’s people are ordinary people who have been made extraordinary by the purpose he has given them.
“If the Spirit of God detects anything in you that is wrong, He does not ask you to put it right; He asks you to accept the light, and He will put it right.”
On Fearing God
“The remarkable thing about God is that when you fear God, you fear nothing else, whereas if you do not fear God, you fear everything else.”
“No healthy Christian ever chooses suffering; he chooses God’s will, as Jesus did, whether it means suffering or not.”
God has one destined end for mankind – holiness! His one aim is the production of saints. God is not an eternal blessing-machine for men. He did not come to save men out of pity. He came to save men because He had created them to be holy.
On God’s Silence
God’s silences are His answers. If we only take as answers those that are visible to our senses, we are in a very elementary condition of grace.
“Beware of any work for God that causes or allows you to avoid concentrating on Him. A great number of Christian workers worship their work. The only concern of Christian workers should be their concentration on God. This will mean that all the other boundaries of life, whether they are mental, moral, or spiritual limits, are completely free with the freedom God gives His child; that is, a worshiping child, not a wayward one. A worker who lacks this serious controlling emphasis of concentration on God is apt to become overly burdened by his work. He is a slave to his own limits, having no freedom of his body, mind, or spirit. Consequently, he becomes burned out and defeated. There is no freedom and no delight in life at all. His nerves, mind, and heart are so overwhelmed that God’s blessing cannot rest on him.”
“Beware of being obsessed with consistency to your own convictions instead of being devoted to God. The important consistency in a saint is not to a principle but to the divine life. It is easier to be an excessive fanatic than it is to be consistently faithful, because God causes an amazing humbling of our religious conceit when we are faithful to Him.”