Ellen G. White Writings

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Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5, Page 339

subdue self and mortify pride; and it was only through the grace of God that this work could be accomplished. Instead of effecting a thorough reformation, you joined the truth to a patched-up character, which would not stand the test of temptation. You did not begin by seeking God with a broken and contrite heart, and making wrongs right. Had you done this, you would not have stumbled and fallen into the snare of the enemy. There was a mixture of selfishness in your motives, which you yourself did not clearly see. Arguments drawn from worldly interest, social position, and comparative respectability influenced you and decided you not to make earnest, thorough work before God and men. Reaching after the worldly standard marred the sincerity and purity of your Christian character; and you failed to bring forth fruits meet for repentance.

Zacchaeus declared: “If I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.” You could at least have made efforts to correct your acts of injustice to your fellow men. You cannot make every case right, for some whom you have injured have gone into their graves, and the account stands registered against you. In these cases the best you can do is to bring a trespass offering to the altar of the Lord, and He will accept and pardon you. But where you can, you should make reparation to the wronged ones.

Had the unbelievers with whom you have associated seen in you the transforming power of the truth, they would have had an argument in favor of Christianity which they could not controvert. You might thus have reflected a clear, sharp light to the world; but instead of this you have mingled with the world and imbibed its spirit. My brother, you must be born again. A mere form of Christianity is not of the least value. It is destitute of saving power, having in it no reformative energy. A religion which is confined to Sabbath worship emits no rays of light to others. I entreat you to examine your own heart closely. You have a combative, contentious spirit, and you are cultivating instead of repressing that spirit. You should make a decided change, and cultivate meekness, faith,

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