Quotes about Quietism


You begin by quieting your heart with a simple reading of the text. Then you meditate, perhaps on a single word or phrase from the text, and in so doing intentionally avoid what might be considered an “analytical” approach. In essence, the goal here is to wait for the Spirit’s illumination so that you will arrive at meaning. You wait for Jesus to come calling. Once the word is given, you go on to pray. After all, prayer is dialogue with God. God speaks through his Word and the person speaks through prayer. Eventually, this prayer becomes contemplative prayer, and it gives to us the ability to comprehend deeper theological truths. It sounds wonderfully pious… [However] it substitutes intuition for investigation. It prefers mood and emotion to methodical and reasoned inquiry. It equates your spirit to the Holy Spirit.


[Quietism] asserts that the Christian is to be passive (quiet) in the process of spiritual growth and let God do everything. According to quietist teaching, the Christian must exert no energy or effort in the process whatsoever, for feeble human effort only hinders the working of God’s power. Quietists believe Christians must simply surrender fully to the Holy Spirit (also called “yielding,” “dying to self,” “crucifying oneself,” “mortifying the flesh,” or “placing one’s life on the altar”). The Spirit then moves in and lives a life of victory through us, and Christ literally replaces us (“it is no longer I who lives, but Christ lives in me” – Gal. 2:20). In its extreme variety, quietism is a spiritual passivism in which God becomes wholly responsible for the believer’s behavior, and the believer feels he must never exert personal effort to pursue righteous living. Quietists have popularized the phrases, “Let go and let God,” and “I can’t; He can.”