Notes from Norman

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by Norman P. Grubb

May I give a little illustration from my personal experience? This wasnít concerning the time when God did graciously meet me in sanctification. This was just an instance in our early missionary career. And this is where I learnt that faith isnít passive. We are probably more advanced than that but do think some people have the idea that you sort of sit down and wait for things to happen, sort of ask for faith. No, you donít ask for faith. You exercise faith. The word that came to me was this. I went home on my first furlough in 1923 but I didnít know much of the things of the Spirit in those days, and I plunged into a period of total darkness. You know what it is to do that. You donít do that when you know another Life, of course, but you do it before you know the other Life. And then I just lost all sight of Christ. I canít tell you why. Whether it was a nervous reaction, I donít know. It was just pitch black in my soul as if I wasnít in Christ at all. And I was taking deputational meetings. Well, you know how difficult it is to take a meeting when you are speaking about something that isnít real to you. To speak about Christ when there is no glow in your soul is pretty hard, as if there is no Christ. And I pondered about that for about 10 days. I was trying to speak of Christ, yet in my heart I was as dead as a stone, and as black as ink. Finally, I remember coming back to a meeting in London and crossing one of the bridges in London. I remember on that bridge I said, ďIím finished. Iím not going to open my mouth in a public meeting until this thing somehow gets adjusted inside me! I canít go on talking in darkness about a Christ Who I say is alive and yet my own heart is as if He isnít alive.Ē Suddenly the Spirit of God spoke to me. He said, ďWho told you you were in darkness? I am the Light of the world and I am in you.Ē

And I suddenly saw that I had received a lie from Satan that was an illusion, a delusion. And for the first time in my life I took action. As I walked out I said, ďYou get out Devil! Christ is in me. He is my Light. And I affirm it now.Ē Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Amen.

But I learned something through that simple silly little action. I learned something. I learned that faith is human action. I learned that I am not to lie down under delusion and illusions and appearance. I am to press right through into the actions of faith.

As far as I know, the most illuminating description of the action of faith in full analysis which is given us in the Bible is Romans 4. That is where we get the great pioneer of faith in action, Abraham, and you get all the stages. There are three main stages of faith in action. Look at the last few verses of Romans 4 where it talks about the faith of Abraham.

Karuizawa Japan Conference of 1954
Topic: ďThe Obedience of FaithĒ