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The Spirit-filled Life by John MacNeil

INTRODUCTION

To First Australian Edition.

Christian reader, I pray that before you finish this little book you may become so eager, so intense in your longings after God, that you will not be satisfied until you are really and actually |FULL| of Him, |filled| with the Holy Ghost.

When the Lord asked Job, in chap. xxxviii.34, |Canst thou lift up thy voice to the clouds, that abundance of waters may cover thee?| he would undoubtedly have answered, No. We, on the other hand, with all humility, but without the slightest hesitation, can answer, Yes. |Abundance| is the Father's will; |abundant| are the Stores of Life in Jesus; |abounding| for ever and ever is the Stream of the Spirit's energies.

We have only to reflect a little till the truth flashes, and then the victory is all but won. We have only to consider, WHO was it that first loved us, and called us to be His own children, when we were wandering in sin's desert? WHO was it that first crossed the wild with a cup of living water to slake our dying thirst? WHO now crosses that desert a second time on our behalf with great camel loads of wine and milk? What did it cost Him to draw that water from Salvation's well, or to buy those luxuries for growth and power? What will one healing, stimulating draught accomplish in us and others? How will He grieve if we decline to |buy,| or hesitate to |drink|? What, above all, will be the consequences to His glory? Oh, let us arise! Let us |shake ourselves from the dust!| Let us drink abundantly, Beloved! There is just now an unutterable need for |something more.| Single souls are drooping, though divinely planted. Churches are full of bones, |very many and very dry.| The world is a jungle, a forest ready for the fire. Men, women and children form one vast continent of feeling, of ever-increasing sensibility, with an ever-deepening, an ever-aching void. Even the Teachers of High Truth themselves are not |abundantly satisfied| with the fatness of God's House; they do not drink deep enough from the |River of God's pleasures.| Yes, there is a thirst not quenched; and I am persuaded that we can only quench Immanuel's thirst when in Him we quench our own. Then let us make haste to God; let us hurry to the Stream that is |full of water.| We cannot know what the |Infilling of the Spirit| means until we are infilled. It is a new experience. God is not thereby better seen than before by nature's eye, but He is better understood, better loved, better leaned on; that is what He wants, and that is enough.

Perhaps, dear reader, the pathway between you and blessing is somewhat hidden, or your eyes are dim, or your heart is only beating with a faint desire. If so, then carefully read this little book; read it beside an open Bible; read it in prayer. It may be, through infinite compassion, that it may prove a key into the |wealthy place;| it may rend the veil, scatter the darkness, lead you to joy unspeakable, and -- to power!

I have known the author long, and love him much. He is thoroughly trained in theology; he is a first-rate preacher; his gospel for sinners is as |clear as crystal;| and when you have read a little further, you will say the same of his gospel for saints! He has penetrated far into the |Secret of the Most High,| and so can speak from a rich experience of his own, to which, however, he never refers.

I cannot but express the hope that this little treatise on the |Spirit-filled Life,| may not only be widely circulated in Australia, but also in England and America. It is fresh, it is homely, it is temperate, it is timely, it is scriptural, it is splendid. It sets forth a Promise to be claimed, a Gift to be received, a Command to be obeyed; and it portrays the sequel -- more liberty, more peace, more devotion, more fellowship with the Son of God in His rejection by man, in His fellowship with the Father.

H. B. MACARTNEY, JR.

St. Mary's, Caulfield,
Victoria, July 12, 1894.

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