Ellen G. White Writings

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The Youth’s Instructor

April 16, 1903

Our Great High Priest

Through sin, man has been severed from the life of God. The soul is palsied through the machinations of Satan, the author of sin. Of himself man is incapable of realizing the sinfulness of sin, incapable of reaching the high standard of perfection. And were this standard placed within his reach, there is nothing in it that the natural heart should desire it. The bewitching power of Satan is upon man. All the ingenious subterfuges that the enemy can suggest are presented to prevent every good impulse. Every faculty given by God to man has been used by man as a weapon against the divine Benefactor. So, although God loves man, he can not safely impart to him the gifts and blessing he desires to bestow. YI April 16, 1903, par. 1

But it is God's purpose that man shall stand before him upright and noble; and God will not be defeated by Satan. He sent his Son to this world to bear the death penalty of man's transgression, and to show man how to live a sinless life. There is no other way in which man can be saved. “Without me,” Christ says, “ye can do nothing.” Through him, and him alone, can the natural heart be changed, the affections transformed, the affections set flowing heavenward. Christ alone can give life to the soul dead in trespasses and sins. YI April 16, 1903, par. 2

In heaven Satan was next to the Son of God. But he yielded to the desire for self-exaltation, and was expelled from the heavenly courts. He came to this earth, to exercise over man his debasing power. This power increased with the ages, but its evil was not recognized, and God could not arbitrarily condemn its author. Satan's work was a deadly peril to the universe, but for the security of the world and of the government of heaven, he must be allowed to develop his principles in their true light. YI April 16, 1903, par. 3

Christ came to this world to save men from death; and from the manger to the cross his way was disputed by Satan. The enemy filled the minds of the Jews with hatred against their Redeemer. He rested not until Christ hung on the cross. YI April 16, 1903, par. 4

But in carrying out his enmity toward Christ till he crucified him,—hung him on the cross of Calvary, with bruised body and broken heart,—Satan completely uprooted himself from the affections of the universe. Christ's death silenced forever the charge that with God self-denial was impossible. It was seen that God denied himself because of his love for mankind. YI April 16, 1903, par. 5

More than we could possibly endure Christ endured in our behalf. Sinless to the last, he died for us. Justice demanded not merely that sin be pardoned; the death penalty must be met. The Saviour has met this demand. His broken body, his gushing blood, satisfied the claims of the law. Thus he bridged the gulf made by sin between earth and heaven. He suffered in the flesh, that with his robe of righteousness he might cover the defenseless sinner. YI April 16, 1903, par. 6

To resist Satan's temptations is no easy task. It calls for a firm hold on God. Christ has met every temptation which Satan can bring against man. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. In his strength man can keep the law of God. YI April 16, 1903, par. 7

Christ was crucified, but in wondrous power and glory he rose from the tomb. He took in his grasp the world over which Satan claimed to preside, and restored the human race to favor with God. And at this glorious completion of his work, songs of triumph echoed and re-echoed through the unfallen worlds. Angel and archangel, cherubim and seraphim, joined in the chorus of victory. YI April 16, 1903, par. 8

Christ is able to save to the uttermost all who come to God by him. He ever liveth to make intercession for us. In earnest appeals the cross continually proffers to the sinner complete expiation. In loving invitation Christ lifts his voice, saying, “Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” YI April 16, 1903, par. 9

As you draw near the cross of Calvary, you see love that is without a parallel. As by faith you grasp the meaning of the sacrifice made on that cross, you see yourself a sinner, condemned by a broken law. This is repentance. As you come with humble heart, you find pardon; for Jesus stands before the Father, continually offering a sacrifice for the sins of the world. He is the minister of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man. The typical offerings of the Jewish tabernacle no longer possess any virtue. A daily and yearly atonement is no longer necessary. But because of the continual commission of sin, the atoning sacrifice of a heavenly Mediator is essential. Jesus, our great high priest, officiates for us in the presence of God, offering in our behalf his shed blood. YI April 16, 1903, par. 10

And as Christ intercedes for us, the Spirit works upon our hearts, drawing forth prayer and penitence, praise and thanksgiving. The gratitude which flows from human lips is the result of the Spirit striking the chords of the soul, awakening holy music. YI April 16, 1903, par. 11

The prayer and praise and confession of God's people ascend as sacrifices to the heavenly sanctuary. But they ascend not in spotless purity. Passing through the corrupt channels of humanity, they are so defiled that unless purified by the righteousness of the great High Priest, they are not acceptable by God. Christ gathers into the censer the prayers, the praise, and the sacrifices of his people, and with these he puts the merits of his spotless righteousness. Then, perfumed with the incense of Christ's propitiation, our prayers, wholly and entirely acceptable, rise before God, and gracious answers are returned. YI April 16, 1903, par. 12

Mrs. E. G. White YI April 16, 1903

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