Ellen G. White Writings

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Historical Sketches of the Foreign Missions of the Seventh-day Adventists, Page 187

nature should have a refining, elevating influence upon us. He has endowed men with mental powers capable of reasoning from cause to effect; by studying the great book of nature, they may comprehend the majesty, the goodness, and the power of the Creator. Were the senses kept clear, and the intellect unclouded, they would thus find manifold sources of elevated, satisfying enjoyment, and their hearts would go out in praise and gratitude to God.

But this Satan is determined to prevent. Therefore he tempts men to the use of wine and strong drink, by which the understanding is darkened, the senses confused, and the image of God defaced. By the indulgence of appetite the perceptions become so blunted that men cannot discern God in his works; they may range through the most beautiful scenes in nature, but they have not a thought of the Creator. How many, endowed with good natural abilities, thus degrade the intellect and dishonor God. Their nature becomes brutish; it is impossible for them to be heavenly-minded. They have rendered themselves incapable of governing or guiding the springs of mental or moral activity. Thus Satan prevents man from fulfilling the destiny which Heaven has marked out for him,—to reach the highest attainments, physical, mental, and moral, that he himself may be happy, that his fellow-men may be blessed by his example, and that God may be glorified.

The things of this world would be enjoyable, were it not for the curse of sin; but crime, sorrow, suffering, and death meet us everywhere. Property, and even life itself, is not safe. Upon the most beautiful portions of the earth, in the valleys, on the mountains, in the crowded cities, in the wilderness, or upon the waters of the great deep, there is danger and death. The restless, surging masses of humanity have forgotten their Creator; transgression of God's law has brought discord, misery, and desolation upon our world; and yet, in their blindness and madness, men continue to transgress. They refuse to listen to the voice of God, inviting them to find peace in him. Kings, statesmen, the mighty ones of the earth, are powerless to give peace and rest to the soul. It is only in obedience to God's law that true happiness can be found. We must submit our will to God if we would have his divine and eternal harmony in our souls.

The richest treasures, the highest blessings of this life, are meager and unsatisfying when compared with those of the future, immortal life. There will open to the senses scenes of beauty that no language can portray. “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” And these precious treasures are freely offered to all who will accept them. “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.”

Stockholm

From Copenhagen a small steamer takes us across the strait to Malmo, Sweden. This has for centuries been a thriving sea port, and is now the third city of Sweden in population and importance.

The channel which separates the coast of Denmark from that of Sweden, is in some places but a few miles wide. On both sides of this channel there are fortifications, and for hundreds of years all the commerce of the world going through this strait was required to pay

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