Rom. 12:1-2 π Eph. 4:24 π 1 Ths. 4:11
The word "passivity" simply describes the opposite condition to activity; and in the experience of the believer it means, briefly,
1) loss of self-control - in the sense of the person himself controlling each, or all of the departments of his personal being; and
2) loss of freewill - in the sense of the person himself exercising his will as the guiding principle of personal control, in harmony with the will of God.
All the danger of "passivity" in the surrendered believer, lies in the advantage taken of the passive condition by the powers of darkness. Apart from these evil forces, and their workings through the passive person, "passivity" is merely inactivity, or idleness. In normal inactivity, that is, when the evil spirits have not taken hold, the inactive person is always holding himself ready for activity; whereas in "passivity" which has given place to the powers of darkness, the passive person is unable to act by his own volition.
The chief condition, therefore, for the working of evil spirits in a human being, apart from sin, is passivity, in exact opposition to the condition which God requires from His children for His working in them. Granted the surrender of the will to God, with active choice to do His will as it may be revealed to him, God requires co-operation with His Spirit, and the full use of every faculty of the whole man. In brief, the powers of darkness aim at obtaining a passive slave, or captive to their will; whilst God desires a regenerated man, intelligently and actively willing, and choosing, and doing His will in liberation of spirit, soul and body from slavery.
The powers of darkness would make a man a machine, a tool, an automaton; the God of holiness and love desires to make him a free, intelligent sovereign in his own sphere - a thinking, rational, renewed creation created after His own image. ( Eph. 4:24; top ) Therefore God never says to any faculty of man, "Be thou idle."
God does not need, nor demand non-activity in the believer, for His working in, and through him; but evil spirits demand the utmost non-activity and passivity.
God asks for intelligent action ( Rom. 12:1-2 , "Your reasonable service,"; top) in co-operation with Him.
Satan demands passivity as a condition for his compulsory action, and in order to compulsorily subject men to his will and purpose.
God requires the cessation of the evil actions of believers, primarily because they are sinful, and secondly because they hinder co-operation with His Spirit.
Passivity must not be confused with quietness, or the meek and quiet spirit," which, in the sight of God, is of great price. Quietness of spirit, of heart, of mind, of manner, voice and expression, may be co-existent with the most effective activity in the will of God. ( 1 Ths. 4:11 , Gr. "Ambitious to be quiet."; top)
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