Deeper Life

The themes of a deeper life and missions were tied together from our earliest days in The Alliance. A. B. Simpson believed that as the work of God goes deeper in us, the Word of God flows more broadly from us. God’s heart is for the world, and as our hearts are joined more intimately with His, we share His passions. This is why The Alliance is often referred to as a “deeper life and missions movement.” The deeper life finds it greatest expression when the gospel takes root and flourishes among the peoples of the world.

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The Holy Spirit

In order to live out the deeper Christian life, we must experience the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. It is that deeper work of the Spirit within us that makes us more and more like Jesus and better equipped to carry out His mission. More than anything though, the deeper work of the Holy Spirit in us draws us first to the Father. Before we can do anything for Jesus, we have to look to Him to be more like Him. The power of the Holy Spirit working in us is our first priority. Before we can do, we have to be—and we desperately need the Holy Spirit to work in us and through us for that work to be present. This deeper work is not reserved for a select group of enlightened believers. It is an essential element of the Christian life for every devoted follower of Jesus.

The deeper life begins as a seed in the life of every believer. It sprouts and begins to grow as we submit to the Spirit’s nurturing guidance. While we are holy before God and fully alive in Christ because of His work on the cross, we remain weak in our ability to live a consistently victorious Christian life. We give in to our earthly desires because we don’t have the strength to live righteously apart from the Spirit’s presence and power in our lives.

As we submit to the Spirit’s gentle, guiding presence as our Counselor (John 14:26), Guide (John 16:13), and Helper (John 14:16), we begin to live triumphantly over sin and shame. The deeper life is a life that displays divine authority and power expressed through words, actions, and the intentions of the heart. As we embrace it, we experience sweet, daily communion with Jesus, fuller confidence in His character, and renewed faith in His promises.

Certainly not all of the mystery of the Godhead can be known by man. But just as certainly, all that men can know of God in this life is revealed in Jesus Christ! When the Apostle Paul said with yearning, ‘That I may know Him,’ he was not speaking of intellectual knowledge. Paul was speaking of the reality of an experience of knowing God personally and consciously, spirit touching spirit and heart touching heart. We know that people spend a lot of time talking about a deeper Christian life, but few seem to want to know and love God for Himself. The precious fact is that God is the deeper life! Jesus Christ Himself is the deeper life, and as I plunge on into the knowledge of the triune God, my heart moves on into the blessedness of His fellowship. This means that there is less of me and more of God—thus, my spiritual life deepens, and I am strengthened in the knowledge of His will!

A. W. Tozer

Simpson’s Encounter

In an opening address at The Old Orchard (Maine) Convention in 1886, Simpson recalled, “I remember well how much this place has meant for me in blessing. I came here five years ago during a convention held by Dr. Cullis, of Boston, to enjoy the incomparable shore, the fine air and these lovely woods. It was not in the convention, however, but alone, out in the fine woods that the Lord met me as never before, and completely changed my whole life. He spoke to me in healing, He led me out into new fields of service and made Himself gloriously real to me in every way, and I feel more like being still this first day in dear Old Orchard and getting again under that old pine tree alone with Him, than of saying much to you in the way of instruction.”

Having personally experienced a deep inner work of God in his life, Simpson became preoccupied with the notion that it was not enough for a Christian to believe in God; he or she must experience the life of Jesus by the Holy Spirit. “He is the very element of our new existence: before us, behind us, above us, beneath us, within us, beyond us,” Simpson described. “This is the yet higher mystery of the new life, greater than the new birth.”

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“Go Deeper”

Through his deep encounters with Jesus, including a miraculous physical healing, Alliance founder Albert Benjamin (A. B.) Simpson developed our core Alliance Christology: The Fourfold Gospel— the Christology on which the spiritual DNA of The Christian and Missionary Alliance is built.

Embracing the deeper life principles of the Fourfold Gospel—Jesus as our Savior, Sanctifier, Healer, and Coming King—enables us to live victoriously over sin, persevere through life’s trials, and accomplish amazing things in His name and for His Kingdom.

Simpson further described the deeper life as, “when the soul is truly converted to God, yields itself wholly to His control, and becomes the living temple of the Almighty Spirit.” Drawing on 1 Thessalonians 5, where the Apostle Paul admonishes brothers and sisters in Christ to be wholly sanctified, Simpson yearned for every believer to experience the fullness of the life of Christ through His Spirit. This is the deeper life.

Beloved, this is God’s message to us today—‘Go deeper!’ Perhaps you have exhausted all the store of truth and experience that you have so far found. Give up trying to spread to wider fields, and sink to deeper depths, and you will find new and undiscovered riches, and the depths will lead you to the heights, and the death to the life of the risen Christ and the fulness of His ascension power. ‘We have received the Spirit that is of God that we might that we might know the things,’ and then know that they are ‘freely given us of God.’ Shall we meet the light? Shall we accept the love? Shall we go deeper?

A. B. Simpson

The Deeper Life and Missions

The Alliance mission and vision are rooted in the call to a deeper life in Christ formed during our early days, which continues to fuel our call to “go” wherever and whenever God leads.

This mission and vision emerge from a sacred place of abiding with the Lord, dwelling in His presence, and being filled with His Spirit. Because we share His desire to draw all people to Himself, we commit ourselves wholeheartedly to the Great Commission.

“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

– MATTHEW. 28:18–20

To further assure His followers of His Spirit’s power and presence as we preach the good news, Jesus again reminds us of the gift He has given us.

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

– ACTS. 1:8–20

As a Christ-centered, Acts 1:8 family, we embrace a single-minded vision: *All of Jesus for All the World*. There is no Great Commission apart from Him, and there is no authentic ministry apart from His Spirit. The deeper life in Christ must take root in us before it can be extended beyond us.

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Remember the words of Jesus in John 15:5: “Apart from me, you can do nothing.” He’s called us to make disciples and make a difference in our world. He’s called us to a mission that is above our pay grade, beyond our mere human ability to accomplish. But He hasn’t asked us to accomplish it on our own. He’s gifted us with the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit in us to empower us to do what we could never do on our own.

A. W. Tozer, former C&MA vice president, pastor, and editor of Alliance Weekly (now Alliance Life), wrote of the deeper life in 1954: “The deeper life must be understood to mean a life in the Spirit far in advance of the average and nearer to the New Testament norm.”

Alliance people are passionate to know Jesus in His fullness. We are united in our desire for greater intimacy with Christ and seek after the deep, abiding presence of His Holy Spirit. We long to be more like Jesus and experience His healing, transformational work in our lives and share it with others.

The deeper life is more than mere words used to describe an everyday occurrence in the life of the Christian. It is the expression that we, in The Alliance, give to the life lived in the empowerment of the Holy Spirit. This life is no ordinary life. It is a life of holiness. It is a life of Christlike attitude and action. It is a life of empowered service, which seeks to reach the lost with the hope of Jesus. This is the heart of the deeper life.

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On Mission For Jesus

As part of the Alliance family for more than 60 years, Orchard Alliance is on mission with The Alliance to bring All of Jesus for All the World.

Achieving this mission starts with a deeper life in Christ and a willingness to submit all aspects of your life to Jesus. As the stewardship and generosity ministry of The Alliance, Orchard Alliance focuses on biblical discipleship so that your faith and finance meet in the way God intended.

We are called to be generous stewards with everything God has entrusted to us. This doesn’t just mean our possessions. Psalm 24 teaches us that God owns everything – our bodies, abilities, time, and even our finances. Every decision we make, however significant or insignificant, involves things that belong to God.

To have a deeper life in Christ is to understand how to practice this principle amid a world driven by consumption and image. Orchard Alliance was created to serve you in this area. So how do we steward the assets entrusted to us in a way that honors God? Our new website, Faith & Finance, has the tools and resources to partner with you in your stewardship efforts and expand your capacity to give generously.

Dig deeper and discover how you can impact the Kingdom through effective stewardship and generosity. Learn more at our new website.


Dig Deeper

Featured resources, facts, quotes, videos, stories, and more.

Module 5: Alliance 101 Guide and Reflection Questions

This resource is designed for you—either as an individual or a group—to dig deeper, to lean into what God is saying, and to challenge you in your walk with Christ.