• Why I write on Andrew Murray

    Four portraits of Andrew Murray between 1848 & 1898

    A generation of Christians with little knowledge of

    Andrew Murray

    broken image



    While visiting family in Cape Town several years ago, I happened to wander past the Groote Kerk (Great Church), with its statue of Andrew Murray who had served there between 1864 and 1871.



    But in spite of this prominent statue of him in the centre of Cape Town, I soon learnt from speaking with friends and acquaintances that most Christians had little knowledge of his life story or even realized that he had been a key player in the South African revival that had spread throughout the Cape between 1860 and 1862.


    Worse still, it appeared that the younger generation of Christians did not even know that there had been a revival at the Cape—not to speak of the rest of the world. So I decided it was time to showcase his life and works to a new generation.


    A recent Interview that goes into

    more detail

    Olea Nel

    Q. Why should twenty-first century Christians be reading Andrew Murray?

    Unfortunately, the preaching we encounter today tends to be either light-on, or just the conveyance of knowledge without the accompaniment of the Holy Spirit to breathe life into the Word.


    Andrew Murray warns us about both types of preaching. He stresses that sermons need to be based on the Word as well as point to Jesus. In addition, they need to teach us how to imitate and submit to Christ so that we may grow in holiness until we are filled with the Spirit.


      Portrait of Andrew Murray at 60

      Q. What stands out in Andrew Murray's writings for you?

      What stands out for me is the how of the spiritual journey:

      • The how of abiding in Christ, and where we fail
      • The how of prayer
      • The how of growing in humility and mortifying self
      • The how of waiting upon God in silent adoration
      • The how of reading Scripture so that the Holy Spirit accompanies our reading and is there to convict and encourage
      • The how of being filled and led by the Spirit

      Q Why did you decide to write about his life in fictional form?

      One of the main reasons why I decided to write a dramatized biography of Andrew Murray’s life is because his early biographers hardly touched upon his spiritual journey and the struggles he experienced as a young pastor. This was despite the many letters that existed where he bared his soul to his father and brother John.


      In addition, his family and friends spoke of a definite ‘before’ and ‘after’ period in his spiritual pilgrimage that I was keen to explore. And there was no better way of capturing the stepping stones and turning points in his life than through a novel.

      Flourish of a cross