Ellen G. White Writings

<< Back Forward >>

«Back «Prev. Pub. «Article   Article» Next Pub.» Forward»

The Review and Herald

February 12, 1895

Ordained to Bring Forth Fruit

By Mrs. E. G. White

Christ says of his followers, “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain; that whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he may give it you.”

Satan, the great apostate, has drawn the world to himself; but in the gift of the only begotten Son, the Father has provided that divine power shall work in opposition to the powers of darkness. Jesus said, “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.” Satan has placed his seat on the earth, where should be the throne of God, and men prostrate themselves before the prince of evil, rendering to him the homage that belongs alone to God. But the cross of Christ has been erected between earth and heaven, and Jesus, the Prince of life, says: “Through my love, I will draw the idolatrous hearts of men to myself. I will place myself in harmony with human nature, and will engage every holy influence and agency in the universe to array itself against the forces of evil.”

The Lord of life and glory came and dwelt among men. Instead of withdrawing himself because of the sinfulness of man, instead of confining his labors to a few congenial spirits, and leaving those who knew him not, to the blindness and ignorance of their sinful hearts, as they deserved to be left, he came nearer to erring humanity. Though in him dwelt all the fullness of the Godhead bodily, he clothed his divinity with humanity, and established his dwelling-place on the earth, in order that he might demonstrate to men the infinite measure of God's love. He came to reveal to men to what extent the Son of God could submit to humiliation, self-denial, and suffering, in order to accomplish his divine purpose of working out the salvation of men.

The glory of Christ is his character, and it is the character of Christ that draws the hearts of men. Connected with the God of all power, divine sympathy draws minds into harmony with the divine, and imparts fresh impulses to human hearts. The love of Christ draws the hearts of those who contemplate his humiliation and suffering in the sinner's behalf. They are amazed at the spectacle of God becoming a sacrifice for the guilty, and though they cannot fathom the depths of his love, they submit to be drawn to him, and respond to his amazing love, exclaiming, “Thy gentleness hath made me great.”

In the plan of restoring in men the divine image, it was provided that the Holy Spirit should move upon human minds, and be as the presence of Christ, a molding agency upon human character. Receiving the truth, men become also recipients of the grace of Christ, and devote their sanctified human ability to the work in which Christ was engaged,—men become laborers together with God. It is to make men agents for God, that divine truth is brought home to their understanding. But I would inquire of the church, Have you answered this purpose? Have you fulfilled the design of God in diffusing the light of divine truth, in scattering abroad the precious jewels of truth?

What must be the thoughts of the angels of God as they look upon the church of Christ, and see how slow is the action of those who profess to be the followers of Christ, to impart the light of truth to the world which lies in moral darkness? Heavenly intelligences know that the cross is the great center of attraction. They know that it is through the cross that fallen man is to receive the atonement, and to be brought into unity with God. The councils of heaven are looking upon you who claim to have accepted Christ as your personal Saviour, to see you make known the salvation of God to those who sit in darkness. They are looking to see you making known the significance of the dispensation of the Holy Spirit; how that through the working of this divine agency the minds of men, corrupted and defiled by sin, may become disenchanted with the lies and presentations of Satan, and turn to Christ as their only hope, their personal Saviour. Christ says: “I have chosen you, and ordained you, that you should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain.” As Christ's ambassador, I would entreat of all who read these lines to take heed while it is called today. “If ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.” Without waiting a moment, inquire, What am I to Christ? and what is Christ to me? What is my work? What is the character of the fruit I bear?

Through the mediumship of truth the character is transformed, and fashioned after the divine similitude. Peter represents Christians as those who have purified their souls through obedience to the truth through the operation of the Holy Spirit. This is confessing Christ. Jesus says: “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I also confess before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.” This statement will cause all who conscientiously desire to know the way of the Lord, to fear and tremble. They will carefully consider what it is to confess Christ. The only way to understand what is our duty is to study the Scriptures and to learn perfectly the lessons of Christ, and to make a good confession of faith, not with our lips only, but in spirit, words, and works. The Lord says, “Ye are my witnesses.” We do not become witnesses for Christ by maintaining a mere form of godliness, but we are his witnesses when we make that confession of Christ which is approved and accepted of the Father. To make such a confession, we must represent Christ in a holy life and blameless conversation. Jesus says, “If a man love me, he will keep my words; and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.” But no one can confess Christ unless the Spirit of Christ abides within him as a living principle. The conversation and deportment will manifest what is in the heart, giving visible expression to the grace and truth within, or revealing the corruption and unbelief of the soul.

It is the Christian's business to shine. The professed follower of Christ is not fulfilling the requirements of the gospel unless he is ministering to others. He is never to forget that he is to let his light so shine before men that they, seeing his good works, may glorify their Father which is in heaven. His speech is to be always with grace, and in harmony with his profession of faith. His work is to reveal Christ to the world. Jesus Christ and him crucified is his inexhaustible theme, of which he is freely to speak, bringing out of the good treasure of his heart the precious things of the gospel. The heart that is filled with the blessed hope, that is big with immortality and full of glory, cannot be dumb. He who has a realization of the sacred presence of Christ, cannot speak light and trifling words; for his words are to be sober, a savor of life unto life. We are not to be children, tossed to and fro, but we are to be anchored in Jesus Christ, and to have something of solid worth of which to speak. Those with whom the Christian comes in contact have a right to know what has been revealed to the follower of Christ, and he is to make it known both by precept and example. The Christian is to publish the good news of salvation, and he is never to weary of the recital of God's goodness. He is continually to draw with Christ, and continually to draw from Christ, eating the flesh and drinking the blood of the Son of man, which Jesus declares are his words, that are spirit and life. Thus he will always have a fresh supply of heavenly manna. Every Christian, high or low, rich or poor, learned or ignorant, is to talk of the kingdom of God, to speak of Christ and him crucified, to those who are in ignorance and sin. You are to speak to sinners; for you know not but God is moving upon their hearts. Never forget that great responsibility attaches to every word you utter in their presence. Ask yourself the question, How many have I spoken to with my heart filled with the love of Christ, concerning the unspeakable gift of God's mercy and Christ's righteousness? To how many of your friends, relatives, and neighbors, have you written, reaching out in unselfish love, that their souls may be saved? Christ said, “I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it.”

(Concluded next week.)

«Back «Prev. Pub. «Article   Article» Next Pub.» Forward»