Ellen G. White Writings

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Manuscript Releases, vol. 19 [Nos. 1360-1419], Page 253

Those whom He addressed regarded themselves as exalted above all other peoples. To them, they proudly boasted, had been committed the oracles of God. The earth was languishing for a teacher sent from God; but when He came just as the living Oracles specified He would come, the priests and the instructors of the people could not discern that He was their Saviour, nor could they understand the manner of His coming. Unaccustomed to accept God's Word exactly as it reads, or to allow it to be its own interpreter, they read it in the light of their maxims and traditions. So long had they neglected to study and contemplate the Bible, that its pages were to them a mystery. They turned with aversion from the truth of God to the traditions of men.

The Jewish nation had reached a critical time in its history. Much was at stake. Would human ignorance give way? Would there be a thirsting for a deeper knowledge of God? Would this thirst develop into a longing for spiritual drink, as the thirst of David developed into a longing for water from the well of Bethlehem? Would the Jews turn from the influence of false teachers, which had perverted their senses, and call upon God for divine instruction?

Many were sitting in the shadow of death, waiting for the Sun of Righteousness to break forth upon them. And when Christ came as a human being, a flood of light was shed upon the world. Many would have received Him gladly, choosing to walk in the light, if the priests and the rulers had only been true to God, and had guided the people aright by giving to them a true interpretation of the truths of the Word. But so long had the leaders misapplied the Scriptures, that the people were misled by falsehoods. It seemed as if a misapplication of the teachings of God's Word was the special work of those who should have stood as faithful sentinels of truth.

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