Ellen G. White Writings

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Lake Union Herald

November 17, 1909

A Call to Consecration

Mrs. E. G. White

Every soul who receives Christ, is to reveal Christ to the world through a transformed character. His life is to be a continual manifestation of devotion to the will of God. By obedience to the commandments of God, man is to honor and glorify his Maker. In his own transformed character he is to magnify before the world the plan of salvation as a plan that is laid in the mercy and the love of God. The name of Jesus will be exalted by these representatives of Christ; for there is no other name given among men whereby we may be saved.

The man who is truly converted is taken into the plan of God, to work for the salvation of his fellow-men. In his own life he reproduces the character of Christ. The earnest, disinterested labor of Christ in behalf of sinners is repeated in his life; the same fervor and solicitude is revealed in his prayers. The Saviour often left His disciples for seasons of prayer with His Father. At these times he poured out His soul in strong crying and tears for those He had come to save, and for power and grace to carry out the great plan of redeeming the world. His example in prayer Christ desired should be a lesson to His disciples in all ages. We cannot be too deeply impressed with the need of laboring for perishing souls. We need to feel the movings of the Spirit of God on our hearts, that we may be led to make every possible effort in their behalf. The truth that has been the means of drawing our souls to God, is to be the great power in us to lead others into the path of righteousness.

When a laborer takes up any work for the church, it should not be in a pompous way, but humbly. He should realize that his knowledge of the truth demands much of him. No power of heaven will be denied to the one who seeks to carry out the purpose of God in his work; but the man who seeks to carry out his own plans and purposes, instead of humbly following the leading of the Lord, reveals by his actions, that were he admitted to heaven he would strive there for the first position. When there is with the minister or elder of the church a disposition to be unchristlike and to work in human wisdom rather than in the wisdom of God, dissension and strife will be created, self will be exalted, and the wisdom of man instead of the wisdom of God will be relied upon. The man who is set to do a work for the church in any line, should first consecrate himself to God and to the work. He will seek to use the methods that Christ used in His efforts to disseminate light, and will leave no means untried to forward the plan of salvation. If he will ever remember that he is a worker together with Christ, a sanctified influence will go forth from him that will make his work efficient.

I am instructed to say to our ministers, You need to be transformed in character, or you will be deceived in regard to your position as workers in the church. The Lord is not glorified by the representations of His truth that are being made; your spirit is dishonoring to Him. A spirit of humility must be revealed in your lives. More thought must be given to soul-preparedness for the work. Self rules in your lives, and the grace of Christ cannot be made manifest.

The work of heart-searching should begin in earnest with the ministry. There are many who need to be converted in word, in spirit, in deportment. Unless the minister seeks to live in the light of God's countenance, and to reflect His image, his influence will hurt rather than help the cause of God.

The law of God is to be obeyed. God's Word sums up obedience of God's law in the words, “Thou shall love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind, and thy neighbor as thyself.” God's law is a law of mercy, an expression of goodness; it holds His creatures responsible for allegiance to Him, places them under obligation to reveal in their characters the attributes of its Author. Through the power of the Holy Spirit the law of God is to be exemplified in the life of a Christian.

To live the law of God, means to reveal the holiness of God's character in every action of the law. In the lives of many of our teachers and ministers this holiness is sadly lacking. With many, the law has become a dead letter. To those who, instead of allowing their lives to be controlled by the law of righteousness and truth, are being swayed by hereditary and cultivated traits of character, I am given this message: There is no time to lose. The end of all things is at hand. Soon from heaven will go forth the decree, “He that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still. Behold, I come quickly; and My reward is with Me, to give every man according as his work shall be.”

Let none seek to be first, but let all now unite in ministering to the world the teachings of Christ. Each converted soul should seek earnestly to acquire a knowledge of the truth, and seek to wield an influence that will represent to worldlings a better world than this. Whatever the moral standing of those about you, it is your privilege to show plainly the line that separates you from the world. By pursuing a course in contrast to the selfishness of the world, and which by its purity condemns the practices of the world, you are to show that you are conforming to the perfect Pattern. Those who minister in word and doctrine are to beseech men and women to be reconciled to God. They are to declare their conversion from evil by consecrating the will, the talent of means, the whole being, to the service of God. Because wickedness exists in society, there should be Christian influences in every land that will stem the tide of evil by manifesting the sympathy, the tenderness, the love of Christ. “And greater works than these shall he do,” Christ declared of every one of His followers; “because I go unto the Father.”

“In Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision, but faith which worketh by love,” and purifieth the soul.

In these words the Holy Spirit through the apostle Paul assures us that all our external privileges, all our high profession of acceptance with God, cannot take the place of faith. Sincere faith in Christ is that alone which can secure for us an entrance into the city of God. Faith in Christ, expressed in the life and character, revealed in love for God and for our brethren, makes the human agent a power in the world and in the church. I am made sad to see that many have not this faith and love; for these are the signs of our Christianity, the witness that we are the children of God. True faith in Christ will recover the backslider from the entanglements of the world, and engage him from day to day in service, that will keep his brethren from backsliding. This is the work that God requires of every soul.

The apostle Paul exhorts those who have taken the name of Christ, “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” If you have lost the liberty you once enjoyed in Christ, you may recover yourself from your backslidings. If you will look to Jesus and accept His word in faith, you may present to the world a very different showing from that you have given in the past. In your life and character you may reveal the faith that works by love and purifies the soul.

I appeal to our ministers, and to those who hold responsible places in the work of God. Do not make mistakes in your lives. You are in danger of working out an unsanctified conception of religion. To possess true religion means to make Christ your pattern, to conform the life-practice to His example. The more closely the example of Christ is followed, the more fully will the gospel light and life be expressed in us. We shall love as brethren. The light shining in us and forth from us will produce life-heat, Christian love. This love will not be confined to our homes and families, but will spread its branches, and produce fruit on the other side of the wall.

Close, heart-searching work is required of those who minister the Word. Let this investigation take place now. They should be converted at heart who preach the Word. True repentance must be experienced by every minister who would in his ministry reach the pattern set for him in Christ. We need far less of preaching, and far more of earnest, humble seeking of the Lord. In our early experiences in the message, when we assembled for camp-meeting, ministers’ meetings were often held in the early morning, when the workers sought for deep conviction of heart and true conversion, as a preparation for the work to be done at the meeting. Sins were confessed to one another and to God. Thorough work was done. At this time, even more than then, we need to seek the Lord in simplicity of heart. God says to us: “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift you up.”

“My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation. For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.... Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him show out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.... The wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.”

“Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double-minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift you up.”

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