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Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers : Page 347

17. Appeals for Truth and Loyalty

"All Ye are Brethren"

March 8, 1895.

I must speak to my brethren nigh and afar off. I cannot hold my peace. They are not working on correct principles. Those who stand in responsible positions must not feel that their position of importance makes them men of infallible judgment.

All the works of men are under the Lord's jurisdiction. It will be altogether safe for men to consider that there is knowledge with the Most High. Those who trust in God and His wisdom, and not in their own, are walking in safe paths. They will never feel that they are authorized to muzzle even the ox that treads out the grain; and how offensive it is for men to control the human agent who is in partnership with God, and whom the Lord Jesus has invited: "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light." "We are laborers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building."

The Lord has not placed any one of His human agencies under the dictation and control of those who are themselves but erring mortals. He has not placed upon men the power to say, You shall do this, and you shall not do that. But there is a power exercised in Battle Creek that God has not given, and He will judge those who assume this authority. They have somewhat of the same spirit that led Uzzah to lay his

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hand on the ark to steady it, as though God was not able to care for His sacred symbols. Far less of man's power and authority should be exercised toward God's human agencies. Brethren, leave God to rule.

The Work for this Time

The great work for this time demands that men shall go everywhere, nigh and afar off, into the highways and hedges, to diffuse light, holding forth the words of life. Has God laid upon one man or a council of men to take this work into their hands, as though the workers, God's own property, were to be under their control?

The business connected with the work of God in any and every branch requires men who are working in harmony with God, for power and success in the work can be attained only through the cooperation of the human and the divine. Without the best of evidence that one understands heavenly and eternal things, he should not be authorized to minister in matters connected with the work that concerns the salvation of souls for whom Christ has died. Unsanctified hands and brains have had altogether too much power entrusted to them, and very unwise moves have been made, that are not in accordance with the will and ways of God.

No man is a proper judge of another man's duty. Man is responsible to God; and as finite, erring men take into their hands the jurisdiction of their fellowmen, as if the Lord commissioned them to lift up and cast down, all heaven is filled with indignation. There are strange principles being established in regard to the control of the minds and works of men, by human judges, as though these finite men were gods.

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And how is it with some who are bearing these sacred responsibilities? Men who are not spiritually minded, who are not consecrated to God, have no commission to perform, nor authority to exercise, in regard to the willing or doing of their fellowmen. But unless men are daily in communion with God, instead of seeking Him with all their heart for a fitness for the work, they will assume the power of dictation over the conscience of others. A sense of the divine presence would awe and subdue the soul, but this they have not. Without the love of God burning in the soul, love to men grows cold. Their hearts are not touched at the sight of human woe. Selfishness has left its defiling imprint on life and character, and some will never lose this image and superscription.

Is the working of the cause of God to be entrusted to such hands? Are souls for whom Christ has died, to be manipulated at the will of men who have refused the light given them of heaven? We should be afraid of man-made laws, and of plans and methods that are not in accordance with the principles of the word of God concerning man's relation to his fellow. "All ye are brethren."

The present order of things must change,[* SEE APPENDIX.] or the wrath of God will fall upon His instrumentalities that are not working in Christ's lines. Has God given any one of you a commission to lord it over His heritage? This kind of work has been coming in for years. God sees it all, and He is displeased with it. When men come in between God and His human agents, they dishonor God and wrong the souls of those who need true encouragement and sympathy and love. I am constrained

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to appeal to our workers: Whatever your position, do not depend on men, or make flesh your arm.

I am urged by the Spirit of God to say to you who have a connection with the Lord's work, Never forget that you are wholly dependent upon God; and if you pass one hour or one moment without relying upon His grace, without keeping the heart open to receive the wisdom that is not earthborn, being sure that without Christ ye can do nothing, you will be unable to distinguish between the common and the sacred fire. Words of a very forbidden character will flash from your lips to destroy hope and courage and faith. Thus it is written in the books of heaven: Your words were not inspired of God, but of the enemy that wounded and bruised Christ in the person of His purchased possession. Souls of infinite value were treated indifferently, turned from, left to struggle under temptation, and forced on Satan's battleground.

Job's professed friends were miserable comforters, making his case more bitter and unbearable, and Job was not guilty as they supposed. Those who are under the pain and distress of their own wrongdoing, while Satan is seeking to drive them to despair, are the very ones who need help the most. The intense agony of the soul that has been overcome by Satan and is feeling worsted and helpless--how little is it comprehended by those who should meet the erring one with tender compassion!

Most pitiable is the condition of one who is suffering under remorse; he is as one stunned, staggering, sinking into the dust. And many who suppose themselves to be righteous, become exasperating comforters; they deal harshly with these souls. In manifesting this hardness of heart in offending and oppressing, they are doing the very same work which Satan delights in

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doing. The tried, tempted soul cannot see anything clearly. The mind is confused; he knows not just what steps to take. Oh, then, let no word be spoken to cause deeper pain!

Our Saviour said: "Whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in Me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea. Woe unto the world because of offenses! for it must needs be that offenses come; but woe to that man by whom the offense cometh! . . . Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of My Father which is in heaven. For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost. How think ye? if a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray? And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish."

"I came not," said Christ, "to call the righteous [you who feel no need of repentance], but sinners to repentance." Those who are laborers together with God will work in Christ's lines. There is many a poor soul who is misunderstood, unappreciated, full of distress and agony--a lost, straying sheep. His mind is beclouded, he cannot find God, and almost hopeless unbelief takes possession of him. Yet he has an intense, longing desire for pardon and peace.

As this picture is opened before you, the inquiry

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may be made, Are there no Christians to whom such a one can go for relief? This question God answers: "I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent." A cold, hardhearted Pharisaism has taken possession of many of the professed followers of Christ, and the love of Jesus is dead.

"And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith He that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead. Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God." Here the problem is solved. The persons here described have had light that would have prompted them to altogether different works, if they had followed the light and had strengthened the things that remained that were ready to die. The light which was glowing in their own hearts when Jesus spoke to their souls, "Thy sins be forgiven thee," they might have kept alive by helping those who needed help.

The work to be done is plainly specified: "Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God. Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee." Many have heard and received the word of life, and have been strongly moved by the truth, but have allowed their souls to become cold, their faith dim,

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through self-righteousness, self-importance, and pride in the possession of a knowledge of truth which they fail to practice. The truth which is not put in practice, loses its power. The heart is closed to its divine influence, and those who should be workers for Christ are idle, and souls whom they might help are left in discouragement and darkness and despair.

Help the Sinking Souls

There are souls who are starving for sympathy, starving for the bread of life; but they have no confidence to make known their great need. Those who bear the responsibilities in connection with the work of God should understand that they are under the most solemn obligation to help these souls; and they would be prepared to help them, if they themselves had retained the soft, subduing influence of the love of Christ. Do these poor souls, ready to die, look to them for help? No; they did this until they could have no hope of help from that quarter. They see not a hand stretched out to save.

The matter has been presented to me thus: A drowning man, vainly struggling with the waves, discovers a boat, and with his last remaining strength succeeds in reaching it, and lays hold upon its side. In his weakness he cannot speak, but the agony upon his face would excite pity in any heart that was touched with human tenderness. But do the occupants of the boat stretch out their hands to lift him in? No! All heaven looks on as these men beat off the feeble, clinging hands, and a suffering fellow being sinks beneath the waves, to rise no more. This scene has been enacted over and over again. It has been witnessed by One who gave His life for the ransom of just such souls. The Lord

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has reached down His own hand to save. The Lord Himself has done the work which He left for man to do, in revealing the pity and compassion of Christ toward sinners. Jesus says, "A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another." Calvary reveals to every one of us the depths of that love.

There are souls in their darkness, full of remorse and pain and anguish, who still feel that God is just and good. The Lord is keeping alive the spark of hope in their hearts. The poor, darkened soul feels, If I could only appear before God, and plead my case, He would pity for Christ's sake, and this horrible fear and agony would be relieved. He has tried to speak to men, and has been rudely repulsed, reproved, taunted by his supposed friends. Sometimes the reproaches heaped upon his head have well-nigh destroyed the last spark of hope. The soul that is conscious of sincere and honest intentions finds he has less to fear from God than from men who have hearts of steel. The soul wrenched with human agony turns away from the misjudgment and condemnation of men who cannot read the heart, yet have taken it upon them to judge their fellowmen. He turns to One who is without a shadow of misapprehension, One who knows all the impulses of the heart, who is acquainted with all the circumstances of temptation. God knows every deed of the past life, and yet in consideration of all this, the troubled soul is ready to trust his case with God, knowing that He is a God of mercy and compassion.

When David was bidden to choose the punishment for his sin, he said, "Let us fall now into the hand

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of the Lord; for His mercies are great: and let me not fall into the hand of man." He felt that God knew the struggle and anguish of the soul. When one is enabled to catch a glimpse of the character of God, he sees not in Him the heartless, vindictive spirit manifested by human agents; he sees that affliction and trial are God's appointed means of disciplining His children, and teaching them His way, that they may lay hold of His grace. "Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of His servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the Lord, and stay upon his God." As the poor backsliding one is led to the river of God's love, he exclaims, When He hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold purified. The suffering soul is made patient, trustful, triumphant in God under adverse circumstances.

"Wherefore in all things it behooved Him to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that He Himself hath suffered being tempted, He is able to succor them that are tempted. "Seeing then that we have a great High Priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." "Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God."

When finite, erring man gives evidence that he regards himself as of greater importance than God, when he

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thinks himself righteous, yet does not manifest the tenderness of spirit that characterized the life of our Lord Jesus, we may know that unless he repents, the candlestick will quickly be removed out of its place. All heaven is astonished at the terrible indifference of the human agents. Men who are themselves tempted to fall into sin, and need pardon, are yet full of self-sufficiency, and are unfeeling toward a brother who is ensnared by the enemy, and whose need and peril should call out Christlike sympathy and effort to plant his feet on the solid Rock.

A Fatal Deception

There is a most fearful, fatal deception upon human minds. Because men are in positions of trust, connected with the work of God, they are exalted in their own estimation, and do not discern that other souls, fully as precious in the sight of God as their own, are neglected, and handled roughly, and bruised, and wounded, and left to die.

The converting power of God must come upon men who handle sacred things, yet who are unable, through some cause best known to God, to distinguish between the sacred fire of God's own kindling and the strange fire which they offer. That strange fire is as dishonoring to God as was that presented by Nadab and Abihu. The sacred fire of God's love would make men tender and kind and sympathetic toward those in peril. Those who indulge in sharp, overbearing words, are really saying: I am holier than thou. Do you not see my exalted position?

But the position does not make the man. It is the integrity of character, the spirit of Christ, that makes him thankful, unselfish, without partiality and without hypocrisy--it

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is this that is of value with God. To those whose life is hid with Christ in God, the Lord says, "Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of My hands; thy walls are continually before Me."

For all in responsible positions I have a message spoken by the mouth of the Lord--the fifty-fifth chapter of Isaiah. Study this chapter, and let not any human being consider that he is above his fellow workers because greater responsibilities are involved in his branch of the work. If he is like Daniel, seeking for the power that comes alone from God, that he may represent, not himself, not his imperfections in selfish and fraudulent practices, but the truth in righteousness, he will not possess a vestige of pride or self-importance; but will be weighted with the spirit of wisdom from God.

The Sacred and the Strange Fire

He will represent the sacredness of the work, he will magnify the truth, and will ever present before men and angels the holy perfume of the character of Christ. This is the sacred fire of God's own kindling. Anything aside from this is strange fire, abhorrent to God, and the more offensive as one's position in the work involves larger responsibilities.

I have a message from God to the sinners in Zion, the ones whom Christ addressed: "Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God." You need to offer always the sacred fire; for then Christ's works, His love, His mercy, His righteousness, will ascend before God, as a cloud of holy, fragrant incense, wholly acceptable.

But strange fire has been offered in the use of harsh words, in self-importance, in self-exaltation, in

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self-righteousness, in arbitrary authority, in domineering, in oppression, in restricting the liberty of God's people, binding them about by your plans and rules, which God has not framed, neither have they come into His mind. All these things are strange fire, unacknowledged by God, and are a continual misrepresentation of His character.

I have a message for you: "Seek ye the Lord while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near: let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon. For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: so shall My word be that goeth forth out of My mouth: it shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it."

"Judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter. Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey: and the Lord saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no judgment. And He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore His arm brought salvation unto Him; and His righteousness, it sustained Him. For He put on righteousness as a breastplate, and an helmet of salvation upon His head; and He put on the garments of vengeance for

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clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloak. . . . So shall they fear the name of the Lord from the west, and His glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him. And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the Lord."

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I do not find rest in spirit. Scene after scene is presented in symbols before me, and I find no rest until I begin to write out the matter. At the center of the work matters are being shaped so that every other institution is following in the same course. And the General Conference is itself becoming corrupted with wrong sentiments and principles.[* SEE APPENDIX.] In the working of plans, the same principles are manifest that have controlled matters at Battle Creek for quite a length of time.

I have been shown that the Jewish nation were not brought suddenly into their condition of thought and practice. From generation to generation they were working on false theories, carrying out principles opposed to the truth, and combining with their religion thoughts and plans that were the product of human minds. Human inventions were made supreme.

The holy principles that God has given are represented as the sacred fire, but common fire has been used in place of the sacred. Plans contrary to truth and righteousness are introduced in a subtle manner on the

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plea that this must be done, and that must be done, "because it is for the advancement of the cause of God." But it is the devising of men that leads to oppression, injustice, and wickedness. The cause of God is free from every taint of injustice. It can gain no advantage by robbing the members of the family of God of their individuality or their rights. All such practices are abhorrent to God. He inspires no such practices as have been entered into by your councils in regard to the publication of books.

The Lord accepts no such transactions; prosperity will not attend these moves. Men connected with His work have been dealing unjustly, and is time to call a halt. Let men deal with men upon the principles of the Ten Commandments, and not ignore these principles in business transactions. False propositions are assumed as truth and righteousness, and then everything is worked in such a way as to carry out these propositions, which are not in accordance with the will of God, but are a misrepresentation of His character.

The great and holy and merciful God will never be in league with dishonest practices; not a single touch of injustice will He vindicate. Men have taken unfair advantage of those whom they supposed to be under their jurisdiction. They were determined to bring the individuals to their terms; they would rule or ruin. There will be no material change until a decided movement is made to bring in a different order of things.

Let no plans or methods be adopted in any of our institutions that will bind mind or talent under the control of human judgment; for this is not in God's order. God has given to men talents of influence which belong to Him alone, and no greater dishonor can be done to God than for one finite agent to bring other

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men's talents under his absolute control, even though the benefits of the same be used to the advantage of the cause. In such arrangements one man's mind is ruled by another man's mind, and the human agency is separated from God and exposed to temptation. Satan's methods tend to one end--to make men the slaves of men. And when this is done, confusion and distrust, jealousies and evil surmisings, are the result. Such a course destroys faith in God and in the principles which are to control, to purge from guile and every species of selfishness and hypocrisy.

The High-Handed Power

The high-handed power that has been developed, as though position has made men gods, makes me afraid, and ought to cause fear. It is a curse wherever and by whomsoever it is exercised. This lording it over God's heritage will create such a disgust of man's jurisdiction that a state of insubordination will result. The people are learning that men in high positions of responsibility cannot be trusted to mold and fashion other men's mind and characters. The result will be a loss of confidence even in the management of faithful men. But the Lord will raise up laborers who realize their own nothingness without special help from God. Age after age Jesus has been delivering His goods to His church. At the time of the first advent of Christ to our world, the men who composed the Sanhedrin exercised their authority in controlling men according to their will. Thus the souls whom Christ had given His life to free from the bondage of Satan were brought under bondage to him in another form.

Do we individually realize our true position, that as God's hired servants we are not to bargain away our

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stewardship? We have an individual accountability before the heavenly universe, to administer the trust committed us of God. Our own hearts are to be stirred. Our hands are to have something to impart of the income that God entrusts to us. The humblest of us may be agents for God, using our gifts for His name's glory. He who improves his talents to the best of his ability may present to God his offering as a consecrated gift that shall be as fragrant incense before Him. It is the duty of everyone to see that his talents are turned to advantage as a gift that he must return, having done his best to improve it.

The spirit of domination is extending to the presidents of our conferences. If a man is sanguine of his own powers and seeks to exercise dominion over his brethren, feeling that he is invested with authority to make his will the ruling power, the best and only safe course is to remove him, lest great harm be done and he lose his own soul and imperil the souls of others. "All ye are brethren." This disposition to lord it over God's heritage will cause a reaction unless these men change their course. Those in authority should manifest the spirit of Christ. They should deal as He would deal with every case that requires attention. They should go weighted with the Holy Spirit. A man's position does not make him one jot or tittle greater in the sight of God; it is character alone that God values.

The goodness, mercy, and love of God were proclaimed by Christ to Moses. This was God's character. When men who profess to serve God ignore His parental character and depart from honor and righteousness in dealing with their fellowmen, Satan exults, for he has inspired them with his attributes. They are following in the track of Romanism.

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In The Track of Romanism

Those who are enjoined to represent the attributes of the Lord's character, step from the Bible platform, and in their own human judgment devise rules and resolutions to force the will of others. The devisings for forcing men to follow the prescriptions of other men are instituting an order of things that overrides sympathy and tender compassion, that blinds the eyes to mercy, justice, and the love of God. Moral influence and personal responsibility are trodden underfoot.

The righteousness of Christ by faith has been ignored by some; for it is contrary to their spirit and their whole life experience. Rule, rule, has been their course of action. Satan has had an opportunity of representing himself. When one who professes to be a representative of Christ engages in sharp dealing and in pressing men into hard places, those who are thus oppressed will either break every fetter of restraint, or they will be led to regard God as a hard master. They cherish hard feelings against God, and the soul is alienated from Him, just as Satan planned it should be.

This hardheartedness on the part of men who claim to believe the truth Satan charges to the influence of the truth itself, and thus men become disgusted and turn from the truth. For this reason no man should have a responsible connection with our institutions who thinks it no important matter whether he has a heart of flesh or a heart of steel.

Men think they are representing the justice of God, but they do not represent His tenderness and the great love wherewith He has loved us. Their human invention originating with the specious devices of Satan, appears fair enough to the blinded eyes of men, because

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it is inherent in their nature. A lie, believed, practiced, becomes a truth to them. Thus the purpose of the satanic agencies is accomplished, that men should reach these conclusions through the working of their own inventive minds.

But how do men fall into such error? By starting with false premises, and then bringing everything to bear to prove the error true. In some cases the first principles have a measure of truth interwoven with the error, but it does not lead to any just action, and this is why men are misled. In order to reign and become a power, they employ Satan's methods to justify their own principles. They exalt themselves as men of superior judgment, and they have stood as representatives of God. These are false gods.

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MINISTERS AND WORKERS (SERIES A, NO. 9, 1897),

PAGES 21-31.] September 24.

Everything in our world is in agitation. Coming events cast their shadows before. The signs of the times are ominous, indeed. There is assurance in nothing that is human or earthly. The winds are held by the four angels; a moment of respite has been graciously given us of God. Every power lent us of God, whether physical, mental, or moral, is to be sacredly cherished to do the work assigned us for our fellowmen who are perishing in their ignorance. The warning is to go forth to all parts of the world. There must be no delay.

Rapidly are men ranging themselves under the banner they have chosen, restlessly waiting and watching the movements of their leaders. There are those who are

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watching and waiting and working for our Lord's appearing; while the other party are rapidly falling into line under the generalship of the first great apostate. They look for a god in humanity, and Satan personifies the one they seek. Multitudes will be so deluded through their rejection of truth that they will accept the counterfeit. Humanity is hailed as God.

One has come from the heavenly courts to represent God in human form. The Son of God was made man, and dwelt among us. "In Him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. . . . That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not. He came unto His own, and His own received Him not. But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God."

There are but two parties. Satan works with his crooked, deceiving power, and through strong delusions he catches all who do not abide in the truth, who have turned away their ears from the truth and have turned unto fables. Satan himself abode not in the truth; he is the mystery of iniquity. Through his subtlety he gives to his soul-destroying errors the appearance of truth. Herein is their power to deceive. It is because they are a counterfeit of the truth that spiritualism, theosophy, and the like deceptions gain such power over the minds of men. Herein is the masterly working of Satan. He pretends to be the savior of man, the benefactor of the human race, and thus he more readily lures his victims to destruction.

We are warned in the word of God that sleepless vigilance is the price of safety. Only in the straight path of truth and righteousness can we escape the

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tempter's power. But the world is ensnared. Satan's skill is exercised in devising plans and methods without number to accomplish his purposes. Dissimulation has become a fine art with him, and he works in the guise of an angel of light. God's eye alone discerns his schemes to contaminate the world with false and ruinous principles bearing on their face the appearance of genuine goodness. He works to restrict religious liberty, and to bring into the religious world a species of slavery.[* SEE APPENDIX.] Organizations, institutions, unless kept by the power of God, will work under Satan's dictation to bring men under the control of men; and fraud and guile will bear the semblance of zeal for truth and for the advancement of the kingdom of God. Whatever in our practice is not as open as day belongs to the methods of the prince of evil. His methods are practiced even among Seventh-day Adventists, who claim to have advanced truth.

If men resist the warnings the Lord sends them, they become even leaders in evil practice; such men assume to exercise the prerogatives of God--they presume to do that which God Himself will not do in seeking to control the minds of men. They introduce their own methods and plans, and through their misconceptions of God they weaken the faith of others in the truth, and bring in false principles that will work like leaven to taint and corrupt our institutions and churches. Anything that lowers man's conception of righteousness and equity and impartial judgment, any device or precept that brings God's human agents under the control of human minds, impairs their faith in God; it separates the soul from God; for it leads away from the path of strict integrity and righteousness.

God will not vindicate any device whereby man shall in the slightest degree rule or oppress his fellowmen.

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The only hope for fallen man is to look to Jesus and receive Him as the only Saviour. As soon as man begins to make an iron rule for other men, as soon as he begins to harness up and drive men according to his own mind, he dishonors God and imperils his own soul and the souls of his brethren. Sinful man can find hope and righteousness only in God, and no human being is righteous any longer than he has faith in God and maintains a vital connection with Him. A flower of the field must have its root in the soil; it must have air, dew, showers, and sunshine. It will flourish only as it receives these advantages, and all are from God. So with men. We receive from God that which ministers to the life of the soul. We are warned not to trust in man, nor to make flesh our arm. A curse is pronounced upon all who do this.

Jesus and Nicodemus

Nicodemus sought an interview with Jesus at night, saying, "Rabbi, we know that Thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that Thou doest, except God be with him." All this was true, as far as it went; but what said Jesus? He "answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." Here was a man in a high position of trust, a man who was looked up to as one educated in Jewish customs, one whose mind was stored with wisdom. He was indeed in possession of talents of no ordinary character. He would not go to Jesus by day, for this would make him a subject of remark. It would be too humiliating for a ruler of the Jews to acknowledge himself in sympathy with the despised Nazarene. Nicodemus thinks, I will ascertain for myself the mission and claims of this Teacher, whether He is indeed the

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Light to lighten the Gentiles, and the Glory of Israel.

Jesus virtually says to Nicodemus: It is not controversy that will help your case: it is not arguments that will bring light to the soul. You must have a new heart, or you cannot discern the kingdom of heaven It is not greater evidence that will bring you into a right position, but new purposes, new springs of action. You must be born again. Until this change takes place, making all things new, the strongest evidences that could be presented would be useless. The want is in your own heart; everything must be changed, or you cannot see the kingdom of God.

This was a very humiliating statement to Nicodemus and with a feeling of irritation he takes up the words of Christ, saying, "How can a man be born when he is old?" He was not spiritually minded enough to discern the meaning of the words of Christ. But the Saviour did not meet argument with argument. Raising His hand in solemn, quiet dignity, He presses home the truth with greater assurance: "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is everyone that is born of the Spirit." Nicodemus said unto Him, "How can these things be?"

Some gleams of the truth were penetrating the ruler's mind. Christ's words filled him with awe, and led to the inquiry, "How can these things be?" With deep earnestness Jesus answered, "Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?" His words convey

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to Nicodemus the lesson that, instead of feeling irritated over the plain words of truth, and indulging irony, he should have a far more humble opinion of himself, because of his spiritual ignorance. Yet the words of Christ were spoken with such solemn dignity, and both look and tone expressed such earnest love to him, that he was not offended as he realized his humiliating position.

Surely one entrusted with the religious interests of the people should not be ignorant of truth so important for them to understand as the condition of entrance into the kingdom of heaven. "Verily, verily, I say unto thee," continued Jesus, "we speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen; and ye receive not our witness. If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?"

This Lesson is for Us Today

This lesson to Nicodemus I present as highly applicable to those who are today in responsible positions as rulers in Israel, and whose voices are often heard in council giving evidence of the same spirit that Nicodemus possessed. Will the lesson given to the chief ruler have the same influence upon their heart and life? Nicodemus was converted as the result of this interview. The words of Christ are spoken just as verily to presidents of conferences, elders of churches, and those occupying official positions in our institutions, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." "A new heart also will I give you."

If you have the Holy Spirit molding and fashioning your heart daily, then you will have divine insight to perceive the character of the kingdom of God. Nicodemus

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received the lesson of Christ and became a true believer. His voice was heard in the Sanhedrin council in opposition to their measures for compassing the death of Christ. "Doth our law judge any man, before it hear him?" he said. The scornful answer was returned: "Art thou also of Galilee? Search, and look: for out of Galilee ariseth no prophet."

Jesus had a disciple in Nicodemus. In that night conference with Jesus the convicted man stood before the Saviour under the softening, subduing influence of truth which was shining into the chambers of his mind and impressing his heart. Jesus said: "If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things? And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but He that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven." Jesus not only tells Nicodemus that he must have a new heart in order to see the kingdom of heaven, but tells him how to obtain a new heart. He reads the inquiring mind of a true seeker after truth, and presents before him and representation of Himself: "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life." Good news! good news! ring throughout the world! "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." This lesson is one of the greatest importance to every soul that lives; for the terms of salvation are here laid out in distinct lines. If one had no other text in the Bible, this alone would be a guide for the soul.

Especially to every man who accepts responsibilities as a counselor, everyone who is dealing with human

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souls, is this grand, beautiful truth to be a bright and shining light. It is no credit to one who has the word of God in his possession, to say: "I have no experience; I do not understand these things." He will never be wiser until he becomes of much less consequence in his own estimation. He must learn his lesson as a little child. He must make it his first duty to understand the work of God in the regeneration of the soul. This change should take place in every man before he accepts a position as a leader or ruler in connection with the sacred work of God. If one has not a vital connection with God, his own spirit an sentiments will prevail. These may be well represented as strange fire offered in the place of the sacred. Man has woven into the work of God his own defects of character, devices that are human and earthly, delusions ensnaring to himself and to all who accept them.

The Judgment of Amalek

God pledges His most holy word that He will bless you if you will walk in His way and do justice and judgment. "Thou shalt not have in thy bag divers weights, a great and a small. Thou shalt not have in thine house divers measures, a great and a small. But thou shalt have a perfect and just weight, a perfect and just measure shalt thou have: that thy days may be lengthened in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee. For all that do such things, and all that do unrighteously, are an abomination unto the Lord thy God. Remember what Amalek did unto thee by the way, when ye were come forth out of Egypt; how he met thee by the way, and smote and hindmost of thee, even all that were feeble behind thee, when thou wast faint and weary; and he feared not God."

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Notwithstanding that the children of Israel had often grieved the Lord by departing from His counsel, yet He still had a tender care for them. The Lord Jesus Christ saw their enemies taking advantage of their circumstances, to do them an injury; for that work was to bring suffering against the weary, who were journeying under God's leading. Hear the judgments which God pronounced: "Therefore it shall be, when the Lord thy God hath given thee rest from all thine enemies round about, in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance to possess it, that thou shalt blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven; thou shalt not forget it."

I pen these words of God that those who profess to be His children may not receive the curse pronounced upon Amalek because they have followed the practices of Amalek. If the heathen received this denunciation of their course for overcoming the faint and weary, what will the Lord express toward those who have had light, great opportunities, and privileges, but have not manifested the spirit of Christ toward their own brethren?

The Lord sees all the dealings of brother with brother, which weaken faith, and which destroy their own confidence in themselves as men dealing with justice and equity. In the most positive language He expresses His displeasure at the iniquity practiced in trade. He says, "Shall I count them pure with the wicked balances, and with the bag of deceitful weights?" The very wrong here mentioned may not have been committed in our institutions, but acts which these things represent have been, and are still being done.

Page after page might be written in regard to these things. Whole conferences are becoming leavened with the same perverted principles. "For the rich men thereof

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are full of violence, and the inhabitants thereof have spoken lies, and their tongue is deceitful in their mouth." The Lord will work to purify His church. I tell you in truth, the Lord is about to turn and overturn in the institutions[*SEE APPENDIX.] called by His name.

Just how soon this refining process will begin I cannot say, but it will not be long deferred. He whose fan is in His hand will cleanse His temple of its moral defilement. He will thoroughly purge His floor. God has a controversy with all who practice the least injustice; for in so doing they reject the authority of God and imperil their interest in the atonement, the redemption which Christ has undertaken for every son and daughter of Adam. Will it pay to take a course abhorrent to God? Will it pay to put upon your censers strange fire to offer before God, and say it makes no difference?

It has not been after God's order to center so much in Battle Creek. The state of things now exists that was presented before me as a warning. I am sick at heart at the representation. The Lord gave warnings to prevent this demoralizing condition of things, but they have not been heeded. "Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savor, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden underfoot of men."

I appeal to my brethren to wake up. Unless a change takes place speedily, I must give the facts to the people; for this state of things must change; unconverted men must no longer be managers and directors in so important and sacred work. With David we are forced to say, "It is time for Thee, Lord, to work: for they have made void Thy law."

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The Lord Has a Controversy

With His People[* SPECIAL

TESTIMONIES TO MINISTERS

AND WORKERS (SERIES A,

NO. 9, 1897), PAGES 37-50.] Cooranbong, Australia, July 5, 1896.

Care should be given to teach every man his dependence upon God; for He is the source of all wisdom and power and efficiency. I have been shown that it is a mistake to suppose that the men in positions of special responsibility at Battle Creek have wisdom which is far superior to that of ordinary men. Those who think that they have, supposing them to have divine enlightenment, rely upon the human judgment of these men, taking their counsel as the voice of God.[* SEE APPENDIX.] But this is not safe; for unless men are wholly consecrated to God, Satan will work through them to impart that knowledge which will not be for the present and eternal good of those who hear.

Many have educated themselves to write or ask for counsel and advice when brought into difficult places. But it is a mistake for those who are placed in responsible positions in our different institutions to depend upon the men who have all too many burdens and responsibilities to bear. A weak, sickly experience will be the lot of those who are educated to depend wholly upon others. Those upon whom they depend may have less of the fear of God than they themselves have; and not more mental power and talent than it is their privilege to possess if they will but realize that they are not to be children, but firm, brave men, seeking to gain more ability by exercising that which they already have, by trading upon the talent God has lent them. We are individually responsible for the use of the talents God

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has given us. Our intellect must be cultivated. Close, hard thinking must be given to the solution of difficulties.

The Lord has given to every man his appointed work, and if He places men in positions of responsibility, He will communicate His Holy Spirit to them, giving them efficiency for their work. But the men who are called upon to take long and expensive journeys in order to help others to devise and plan are not themselves in close connection with the God of all wisdom if they put confidence in their own strength and wisdom. If they have not been willing to bear the yoke of Christ, or to learn in His school to be meek and lowly in heart as He was; if they have not learned to lift the burdens God has given them, and to follow wherever He may lead them, what will their expensive trips amount to? What is their wisdom worth? Is it not accounted foolishness with God?

Teach This to the People

State conferences may depend upon the General Conference for light and knowledge and wisdom; but is it safe for them to do this? Battle Creek is not to be the center of God's work. God alone can fill this place. When our people in the different places have their special convocations, teach them, for Christ's sake and for their own soul's sake, not to make flesh their arm. There is no power in men to read the hearts of their fellowmen. The Lord is the only one upon whom we can with safety depend, and He is accessible in every place and to every church in the Union. To place men where God should be placed does not honor or glorify God. Is the president of the General Conference to be the god of the people? Are the men at Battle Creek to be regarded as infinite in wisdom? When

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the Lord shall work upon human hearts and human intellects, principles and practices different from this will be set before the people. "Cease ye from man."

The Lord has a controversy with His people over this matter. Why have they left the Lord their God, who so loved them "that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life"? His love is not uncertain and fluctuating, but is as far above all other love as the heavens are above the earth. Ever He watches over His children with a love that is measureless and everlasting. "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out!"

"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him." Mercy and love and wisdom are to be found in God; but many who profess to know Him have turned from the One in whom our hope of eternal life is centered, and have educated themselves to depend upon their erring and fallible fellowmen. They are crippled spiritually when they do this; for no man is infallible, and his influence may be misleading. He who trusts in man not only leans upon a broken reed, and gives Satan an opportunity to introduce himself, but he hurts the one in whom the trust is placed; he becomes lifted up in his estimation of himself, and loses the sense of his dependence upon God. Just as soon as man is placed where God should be, he loses his purity, his vigor, his confidence in God's power. Moral confusion results, because his powers become unsanctified and perverted. He feels competent to judge his fellowmen, and he strives unlawfully to be a god over them.

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"Let This Mind Be in You"

But there must be no self-exaltation in the work of God. However much we know, however great our mental endowments, none of us can boast; for what we possess is but an entrusted gift, lent us on trial. The faithful improvement of these endowments decides our destiny for eternity; but we have nothing whereby we should exalt self or lift us up, for that which we have is not our own.

We are to be courteous toward all men, tenderhearted and sympathetic; for this was the character Christ manifested when on earth. The more closely we are united with Jesus Christ, the more tender and affectionate will be our conduct toward one another. The redemption of the human race was planned that man, fallen though he was, might be partaker of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. If by His grace we become partakers of the divine nature, our influence upon those around us is not dangerous but beneficial. Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith, we can be a blessing to all with whom we associate; for the Holy Spirit's power upon the human heart can make and keep it pure.

Those who do not receive Christ as their personal Saviour, who do not feel the need of His grace upon heart and character, cannot influence those around them for good. Whatever their station in life, they will carry with them an influence that Satan will use in his service. Such lose all hope of eternal life themselves, and by their wrong example lead others astray.

Study the Cross

The cross of Calvary means everything to perishing souls. Through the suffering and death of the Son of

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man, the salvation of man was made possible. Through the agency of the Holy Spirit God designs that His image shall be restored in humanity, that a new and living principle of life shall be introduced into the minds that have become defiled by sin. The love of God is fully able to restore, rebuild, encourage, and strengthen every believing soul who will accept the truth as it is in Jesus. But in order that this may be accomplished, men must yoke up with Christ. The cross of Christ must be studied. It must rivet the attention and hold the affections. The blood which there was shed for sins will purify and cleanse mind and heart from every species of selfishness.

Sanctified Through the Truth

God is the author of all truth; and truth practiced prepares the way for more advanced truth. When God's delegated servants proclaim fresh truth, the Holy Spirit moves upon the mind which has been prepared by walking in the light, quickening the perceptive faculties to discern the beauty and majesty of truth.

But the truth is no truth to the one who does not reveal, by his elevated spiritual character, a power beyond that which the world can give, an influence corresponding in its sacred, peculiar character to the truth itself. He who is sanctified by the truth will exert a saving, vital influence upon all with whom he comes in contact. This is Bible religion.

Men, saved only by the atoning sacrifice of Christ Jesus, have no right to seek to exalt themselves above their fellowmen. Let them sit at the feet of Jesus, and learn of Him, striving not to make themselves shine. If the love of Jesus Christ abides in them, they will shine unconsciously, diffusing the light of the glory of Christ

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through the world. "I, if I be lifted up," Christ said, "will draw all men unto Me." If a minister makes Christ his hope, his trust, his dependence, he is one with Christ, a laborer together with God; and by his ministry, souls are converted to Christ.

All Ability is from God

There are those who are not learned and who have not a large endowment of gifts, but they need not become discouraged because of this. Let them use what they have, faithfully guarding every weak point in their characters, seeking by divine grace to make it strong. There is no man living that has any power or ability which he has not received from God, and the source from whence it came is open to the weakest human being. If he will draw near to God, the unfailing source of strength, he will realize that God fulfills His promise. But in this work, we need not call men thousands of miles to give us aid; for Christ has promised, "Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find."

God has not given talents to men capriciously, but according to their God-given ability to use them. The greater the talents lent to man, the greater the returns required. God requires every human agent to consult the living oracle, and become thoroughly acquainted with His expressed will in all matters, that by diligently using the talents lent him, he may gain others.

God would have us learn the solemn lesson that we are working out our own destiny. The character we form in this life decides whether or not we are fitted to live through the eternal ages. No man can with safety remain idle. He may not have many talents, but let him trade on those which he has; and in proportion

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as he exhibits integrity toward God and his fellowmen, so God will bless him.

The Holy Spirit waits to give aid to every believing soul, and Jesus declares, "Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world." Let those who believe in Jesus be strong, prayerful, and full of trust in Christ's power to save. "Call upon Me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify Me."

The Lord's Entreaty

Let me entreat our state conferences and our churches to cease putting their dependence upon men and making flesh their arm. Look not to other men to see how they conduct themselves under the conviction of the truth, or to ask them for aid. Look not to men in high positions of responsibility for strength, for they are the very men who are in danger of considering a position of responsibility as evidence of God's special power. Our churches are weak because the members are educated to look to and depend upon human resources, and thousands of dollars are needlessly expended in transporting finite men from one place to another, in order that they may settle little difficulties, when Jesus is ever near to help those who are needy and distressed.

The warnings given in the word of God to the children of Israel were meant, not merely for them, but for all who should live upon the earth. He says to them: "Woe to the rebellious children, . . . that take counsel, but not of Me; and that cover with a covering, but not of My Spirit, that they may add sin to sin: that walk to go down into Egypt, and have not asked at My mouth; to strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh, and to trust in the shadow of Egypt!" If

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the Lord reproved His people anciently because they neglected to seek counsel of Him when in difficulty, will He not be displeased today if His people, instead of depending on the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness to lighten their way, turn from Him in their test and trial for the aid of human beings who are as erring and inefficient as themselves? Where is our strength? Is it in men who are as helpless and dependent as ourselves, who need guidance from God even as we do?

The Present Help

Christ says, "Without Me ye can do nothing," and He has provided the Holy Spirit as a present help in every time of need. But many have a feeble religious experience because, instead of seeking the Lord for the efficiency of the Holy Spirit, they make flesh their arm. Let the people of God be educated to turn to God when in trouble and gain strength from the promises that are yea and amen to every trusting soul.

The word of the Lord is to us, "Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For everyone that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?"

The promises of God are full and abundant, and there is no need for anyone to depend upon humanity for strength. To all that call upon Him, God is near

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to help and succor. And He is greatly dishonored when, after inviting our confidence, we turn from Him--the only One who will not misunderstand us, the only One who can give unerring counsel--to men who in their human weakness are liable to lead us astray.

"Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near Me with their mouth, and with their lips do honor Me, but have removed their heart far from Me, and their fear toward Me is taught by the precept of men: therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid. Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the Lord, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us?"

The Lord has shown us His way; shall we walk in it? or shall we, finite and erring as we are, walk in our own counsel, and practice the principles which He has warned us against?

The Present Warning

"Now go, write it before them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the time to come forever and ever: that this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the Lord: which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits: get you out of the way, turn aside out of the path, cause the Holy One of Israel to cease from before us. Wherefore thus saith the Holy One of Israel, Because ye despise this word, and trust in oppression and perverseness, and stay thereon: therefore this iniquity shall be to you as a breach ready to

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fall, swelling out in a high wall, whose breaking cometh suddenly at an instant."

"Whom shall He teach knowledge? and whom shall He make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little: for with stammering lips and another tongue will He speak to this people. To whom He said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear. But the word of the Lord was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little and there a little; that they might go; and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken. Wherefore hear the word of the Lord, ye scornful men that rule this people which is in Jerusalem. Because ye have said, We have made a covenant with death, and with hell are we at agreement; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us: for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves: therefore thus saith the Lord God, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste. Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet: and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding place."

"Thus saith the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel; In returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength: and ye would not." "And in that day shall the deaf hear the words of the book, and the eyes of the blind shall see out of obscurity, and out of darkness. The meek also shall

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increase their joy in the Lord, and the poor among men shall rejoice in the Holy One of Israel. For the terrible one is brought to nought, and the scorner is consumed, and all that watch for iniquity are cut off: that make a man an offender for a word, and lay a snare for him that reproveth in the gate, and turn aside the just for a thing of nought. Therefore thus saith the Lord, who redeemed Abraham, concerning the house of Jacob, Jacob shall not now be ashamed, neither shall his face now wax pale. But when he seeth his children, the work of Mine hands, in the midst of him, they shall sanctify My name, and sanctify the Holy One of Jacob, and shall fear the God of Israel. They also that erred in spirit shall come to understanding, and they that murmured shall learn doctrine."

Will these warnings be passed by as of no account? The Lord calls upon every teacher, every minister, everyone who has received the light of His truth, to mark well his spiritual standing. They have had great light, and if they would secure eternal life, they must no longer make finite men their dependence, but build upon the sure foundation.

No council of men can with safety remove God's principles, and set up their own; for the word of God declares, "Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet: and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding place." "For the Lord shall rise up as in Mount Perazim, He shall be wroth as in the valley of Gibeon, that He may do His work, His strange work; and bring to pass His act, His strange act. Now

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therefore be ye not mockers, lest your bands be made strong: for I have heard from the Lord God of hosts a consumption, even determined upon the whole earth."

We are living in times full of importance to each one. Light is shining in clear, steady rays around us. If this light is rightly received and appreciated, it will be a blessing to us and to others; but if we trust in our own wisdom and strength, or in the wisdom and strength of our fellowmen, it will be turned into a poison. In the struggle for eternal life, we cannot lean upon one another. The bread of life must be eaten by each one. Individually we must partake of it, that soul, body, and mind may be revived and strengthened by its transforming power, thus becoming assimilated to the mind and character of Jesus Christ. God must be made first and last and best in everything.

Each one must hunger and thirst after righteousness for himself. Leaning upon men, and trusting in their wisdom, is dangerous to the spiritual life of any Christian. Those in whom confidence is placed may be honest and true, serving the Lord with all diligence. But if, individually, we are endeavoring to walk in the footsteps of Christ, we can follow Him as well as those whom we admire for their consistent, humble lives.

Not Man but the Lord

It is too often the case that those who are looked up to are not what they are supposed to be. Often sin lurks in the heart, and wrong habits and deceptive practices are woven into the character. How does our heavenly Father regard this? His counsel is always reliable, and He has evidenced His great love for the human race, and He looks on with sadness when His

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children are encouraged to turn away from Him and place their dependence upon finite men, whom they know not, and whose judgment and experience may not be reliable. But this has been done, and God has been made secondary.

In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, I beseech the people of God to depend upon the Lord for strength. Beware how you place men where God should be. We are not safe in taking men as our authority or our guide, for they will surely disappoint us. Individually, we are to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling, "for it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure." We have a high calling in Christ Jesus; we are carrying forward a vast and holy work, and God calls upon each one to uplift His standard in the sight of this world and of the universe of heaven, by the power of the Lord Jehovah, in whom is "everlasting strength."

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We are to be one with Christ as He is one with the Father, and the Father will love us as He loves His Son. We may have the same help that Christ had, we may have strength for every emergency; for God will be our front guard and our rearward. He will shut us in on every side, and when we are brought before rulers, before the authorities of the earth, we need not meditate beforehand of what we shall say. God will teach us in the day of our need. Now may God help us to come to the feet of Jesus and learn of Him, before we seek to become teachers of others.-- Review and Herald, Feb. 18, 1890.

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I felt sorry when I read your letter breathing so depressed a spirit. Read Ephesians 2:4-22. This scripture has been given me for you. Read it carefully, as you never read it before. It is full of instruction. Christ dwelling in our hearts by faith means the contemplation of Christ, beholding Christ, ever cherishing the dear Saviour as our very best and honored Friend, so that we would not in any action grieve and offend Him. We have always this promise to comfort and help us: "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God."

Bear in mind, the time will never come when the hellish shadow of Satan will not be cast athwart our pathway to obstruct our faith and eclipse the light emanating from the presence of Jesus, the Sun of Righteousness. Our faith must not stagger, but cleave through that shadow. We have an experience that is not to be buried in the darkness of doubt. Our faith is not in feeling, but in truth. The inspired apostle speaks of our being built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the Chief Cornerstone. The church of Christ is represented as being built for "an habitation of God through the Spirit." If we are "rooted and grounded in love," we shall "be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge." Oh, precious possibilities and encouragement! In the human heart cleansed from all moral impurity dwells

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the precious Saviour, ennobling, sanctifying the whole nature, and making the man a temple for the Holy Spirit.

Christ a Personal Saviour

Then is Christ a personal Saviour? We bear about in our body the dying of the Lord Jesus, which is life and salvation and righteousness to us. Wherever we go, there is the recollection of One dear to us. We are abiding in Christ by a living faith. He is abiding in our hearts by our individual appropriating of faith. We have the companionship of the divine presence, and as we realize this presence, our thoughts are brought into captivity to Jesus Christ. Our spiritual exercises are in accordance with the vividness of our sense of this companionship. Enoch walked with God in this way; and Christ is dwelling in our hearts by faith when we will consider what He is to us, and what a work He has wrought out for us in the plan of redemption. We shall be most happy in cultivating a sense of this great gift of God to our world and to us personally.

These thoughts have a controlling power upon the whole character. I want to impress upon your mind that you may have a divine companion with you, if you will, always. "And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people." As the mind dwells upon Christ, the character is molded after the divine similitude. The thoughts are pervaded with a sense of His goodness, His love. We contemplate His character, and thus He is in all our thoughts. His love encloses us. If we gaze even a moment upon the sun in its meridian glory, when we

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turn away our eyes, the image of the sun will appear in everything upon which we look. Thus it is when we behold Jesus; everything we look upon reflects His image, the Sun of Righteousness. We cannot see anything else, or talk of anything else. His image is imprinted upon the eye of the soul and affects every portion of our daily life, softening and subduing our whole nature. By beholding, we are conformed to the divine similitude, even the likeness of Christ. To all with whom we associate we reflect the bright and cheerful beams of His righteousness. We have become transformed in character; for heart, soul, mind, are irradiated by the reflection of Him who loved us and gave Himself for us. Here again there is the realization of a personal, living influence dwelling in our hearts by faith.

Abiding Presence of Jesus

When His words of instruction have been received, and have taken possession of us, Jesus is to us an abiding presence, controlling our thoughts and ideas and actions. We are imbued with the instruction of the greatest Teacher the world ever knew. A sense of human accountability and of human influence gives character to our views of life and of daily duties. Jesus Christ is everything to us--the first, the last, the best in everything. Jesus Christ, His Spirit, His character, colors everything; it is the warp and the woof, the very texture of our entire being. The words of Christ are spirit and life. We cannot, then, center our thoughts upon self; it is no more we that live, but Christ that liveth in us, and He is the hope of glory. Self is dead, but Christ is a living Saviour. Continuing to look unto Jesus, we reflect His image to all around us.

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We cannot stop to consider our disappointments, or even to talk of them; for a more pleasant picture attracts our sight--the precious love of Jesus. He dwells in us by the word of truth.

What said Christ to the Samaritan woman at Jacob's well? "If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give Me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of Him, and He would have given thee living water." "Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life." The water that Christ referred to was the revelation of His grace in His word; His Spirit, His teaching, is as a satisfying fountain to every soul. Every other source to which they shall resort will prove unsatisfying. But the word of truth is as cool streams, represented as the waters of Lebanon, which are always satisfying. In Christ is fullness of joy forevermore. The desires and pleasures and amusements of the world are never satisfying nor healing to the soul. But Jesus says, "Whoso eateth My flesh, and drinketh My blood, hath eternal life."

Christ's gracious presence in His word is ever speaking to the soul, representing Him as the well of living water to refresh the thirsting soul. It is our privilege to have a living, abiding Saviour. He is the source of spiritual power implanted within us, and His influence will flow forth in words and actions, refreshing all within the sphere of our influence, begetting in them desires and aspirations for strength and purity, for holiness and peace, and for that joy which brings no sorrow with it. This is the result of an indwelling Saviour.

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The Intercession of Christ

Jesus says, "Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world." He walked once a man on earth, His divinity clothed with humanity, a suffering, tempted man, beset with Satan's devices. He was tempted in all points like as we are, and He knows how to succor those that are tempted. Now He is at the right hand of God, He is in heaven as our advocate, to make intercession for us. We must always take comfort and hope as we think of this. He is thinking of those who are subject to temptations in this world. He thinks of us individually, and knows our every necessity. When tempted, just say, He cares for me, He makes intercession for me, He loves me, He has died for me. I will give myself unreservedly to Him. We grieve the heart of Christ when we go mourning over ourselves as though we were our own savior. No; we must commit the keeping of our souls to God as unto a faithful Creator. He ever lives to make intercession for the tried, tempted ones. Open your heart to the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness, and let not one breath of doubt, one word of unbelief, escape your lips, lest you sow the seeds of doubt. There are rich blessings for us; let us grasp them by faith. I entreat you to have courage in the Lord. Divine strength is ours; and let us talk courage and strength and faith. Read the third chapter of Ephesians. Practice the instruction given. Bear a living testimony for God under all circumstances.