Ellen G. White Writings

<< Back Forward >>

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

The Signs of the Times

September 3, 1902

“Let This Mind Be in You”

By Mrs. E. G. White

The ethics inculcated by the Gospel acknowledge no standard but the perfection of God's mind, God's will. God requires from His creatures conformity to His will. Imperfection of character is sin, and sin is the transgression of the law. All righteous attributes of character dwell in God as a perfect, harmonious whole. Every one who receives Christ as his personal Saviour is privileged to possess these attributes. This it the science of holiness.

How glorious are the possibilities set before the fallen race! Through His Son, God has revealed the excellency to which man is capable of attaining. Through the merits of Christ, man is lifted from his depraved state, purified, and made more precious than the golden wedge of Ophir. It is possible for him to become a companion of the angels in glory, and to reflect the image of Jesus Christ, shining even in the bright splendor of the eternal throne. It is his privilege to have faith that through the power of Christ he shall be made immortal. Yet how seldom he realizes to what heights he could attain if he would allow God to direct his every step!

God permits every human being to exercise his individuality. He desires no one to submerge his mind in the mind of a fellow mortal. Those who desire to be transformed in mind and character are not to look to men, but to the divine Example. God gives the invitation, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.” By conversion and transformation, men are to receive the mind of Christ. Every one is to stand before God with an individual faith, an individual experience, knowing for himself that Christ is formed within, the hope of glory. For us to imitate the example of any man,—even one whom we might regard as nearly perfect in character,—would be to put our trust in a defective human being, one who is unable to impart a jot or tittle of perfection.

As our Example we have One who is all and in all, the chiefest among ten thousand, One whose excellency is beyond comparison. He graciously adapted His life for universal imitation. United in Christ were wealth and poverty; majesty and abasement; unlimited power, and meekness and lowliness which in every soul who receives Him will be reflected. In Him, through the qualities and powers of the human mind, the wisdom of the greatest Teacher the world has ever known was revealed.

Before the world, God is developing us as living witnesses to what men and women may become through the grace of Christ. We are enjoined to strive for perfection of character. The divine Teacher says, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” Would Christ tantalize us by requiring of us an impossibility?—Never, never! What an honor He confers upon us in urging us to be holy in our sphere, as the Father is holy in His sphere! He can enable us to do this, for He declares, “All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth.” This unlimited power it is our privilege to claim.

The glory of God is His character. While Moses was in the mount, earnestly interceding with God, He prayed, “I beseech Thee, show me Thy glory.” In answer God declared “I will make all My goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before thee; and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.”

The glory of God—His character—was then revealed: “The Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty.”

This character was revealed in the life of Christ. That He might by His own example condemn sin in the flesh, He took upon Himself the likeness of sinful flesh. Constantly He beheld the character of God; constantly He revealed this character to the world.

Christ desires His followers to reveal in their lives this same character. In His intercessory prayer for His disciples He declared: “The glory [character] which Thou gavest Me I have given them; that they may be one, even as We are one; I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that Thou hast sent Me, and hast loved them, as Thou hast loved Me.”

Today it is still His purpose to sanctify and cleanse His church “with the washing of water by the Word, that He might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.” No greater gift than the character that He revealed, can Christ ask His Father to bestow upon those who believe on Him. What largeness there is in His request! What fulness of grace every follower of Christ has the privilege of receiving!

God works with those who properly represent His character. Through them His will is done on earth as it is done in heaven. Holiness leads its possessor to be fruitful, abounding in every good work. He who has the mind that was in Christ never becomes weary in well-doing. Instead of expecting promotion in this life, he looks forward to the time when the Majesty of heaven shall exalt the sanctified ones to His throne, saying unto them “Come, ye blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”

O that we might more fully appreciate the honor Christ confers upon us! By wearing His yoke and learning of Him, we become like Him in aspiration, in meekness and lowliness, in fragrance of character, and unite with Him in ascribing praise and honor and glory to God as supreme. Those who live up to their high privileges in this life will receive an eternal reward in the life to come. If faithful, we shall join the heavenly musicians in singing with sweet accord songs of praise to God and to the Lamb.

It is our life-work to be reaching forward to the perfection of Christian character, striving constantly for conformity to God's will. Day by day we are to press upward, ever upward, until of us it can be said, “Ye are complete in Him.”

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