Larger font
Smaller font
Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 17 (1902) - Contents
  • Results
  • Related
  • Featured
No results found for: "".
  • Weighted Relevancy
  • Content Sequence
  • Relevancy
  • Earliest First
  • Latest First
    Larger font
    Smaller font

    Ms 13, 1902

    God’s People to be Light-Bearers


    June 8, 1901

    Portions of this manuscript are published in UL 173.

    This morning I am weak in physical strength. During the past night I was in constant labor with congregations, speaking to them on the subject of the true standard of godliness.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 1

    Christ declared Himself to be the light of the world. To His disciples He gave a part in the work of shedding light on a sin-darkened world. “Ye are the light of the world,” He declared. “A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick, and it giveth light to all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” [Matthew 5:14-16.]17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 2

    The church has been made the repository of the truths of the gospel, the agency through which God’s light is to shine forth in clear, distinct rays. How is this light to shine? Let God’s Word speak.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 3

    “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you, both to will and to do of his good pleasure. Do all things without murmurings and disputings; that ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world.” [Philippians 2:12-15.]17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 4

    “And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment; that ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence, till the day of Christ; being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.” [Philippians 1:9-11.]17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 5

    “Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour. ... For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord; walk as children of light; (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth,) proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. ... All things that are reproved are made manifest by the light; for whatsoever doth make manifest is light. Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.” [Ephesians 5:1, 2, 8-10, 13-17.]17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 6

    “Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. For, behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people; but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee. And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.” [Isaiah 60:1-3.]17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 7

    God has made every provision for our justification and sanctification. He has given Christ as the author and finisher of our faith, that He and the heavenly angels may rejoice over those who are made complete in Him. Christ gave His life for sinners. By His death He opened a fountain in which all may wash their robes of character and make them white. Upon the rock of Calvary He laid the corner stone of His church. He died on the cross, but He rose from the tomb, and proclaimed, “I am the resurrection and the life.” [John 11:25.] He made His followers joint heirs with Him of His glory. In His name they were to go forth to carry out His purpose of bringing many souls to a knowledge of the truth. “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:19, 20.]17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 8

    Heaven’s resources are limitless, and they are all at our command. Why then, I ask, is the progress of the Lord’s work in our world so slow? Why is Christ so sadly misrepresented? Why are not the Lord’s followers increasing in knowledge and purity, holiness and power?17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 9

    Are there not presented before Christ’s followers the highest virtues to be cultivated, the greatest honors to be gained? God calls upon them to enter upon a race in which every one may win. He calls upon them to enlist in a warfare in which every one may be a conqueror. A robe of righteousness and a crown of everlasting life—this is the reward held out before the overcomer.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 10

    The inhabitants of the heavenly universe expect the followers of Christ to shine as lights in the world. They are to show forth the power of the grace that Christ died to give to men. Those who claim to be Christians are responsible to present the highest development of Christianity. They are the recognized representatives of Christ. Their work is to show that Christianity is a reality. If they are what they claim to be—Christians—then they are men of faith, men of constant growth, men of courage, whole-souled men, who trust without questioning in God and His promises.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 11

    God calls for men of undaunted courage, men full of faith, hope, and trust, who, rejoicing in the thought of the final triumph, refuse to be hindered by obstacles. He who steadfastly adheres to the principles of trust has the assurance that his weakest points of character may become his strongest. Heavenly angels are close beside him who strives to bring his life into harmony with God and His holy precepts. God is with him as he declares, “I must overcome the temptations that surround me, else they will overcome me, and will drive Christ from my heart.” He combats all temptation and braves all opposition. By the strength obtained from on high, he holds in control the passions and tendencies which, uncontrolled, would lead him to defeat.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 12

    The presence of the man who loves and fears God is as a sweet perfume in his family. His example, as well as his words, speak eloquently in favor of the truth. All with whom he comes in contact are constrained to say, “He has been with Christ, and has learned of him.” [See Acts 4:13.]17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 13

    When the Christian takes his baptismal vow, divine help is pledged to him. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit stand ready to work in his behalf. God places at his command the resources of heaven, that he may be an overcomer. His own power is small; but God is omnipotent, and God is his helper. Daily he is to make known his wants at the throne of grace. By faith and trust, by availing himself of the resources provided, he will come off more than conqueror.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 14

    Why, then, should not those who are fighting against the powers of darkness move forward with faith and courage? God and Christ and the Holy Spirit are on their side.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 15

    The experience of those running the race for immortality is described by the apostle Paul: “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize. So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown, but we an incorruptible. I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air. But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection; lest by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.” [1 Corinthians 9:24-27.]17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 16

    These words outline our work. God expects those who believe in Christ to co-operate with the divine instrumentalities and thus reveal a strength that the worldling cannot reveal. God is dishonored, and His cause is reproached when the Christian shows less zeal, less self-denial, in his strife for the mastery over evil, than do those who are striving for the mastery over the things of this world, who trust only in human efficiency.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 17

    When we remember that no one knows when his probation may close, how dare we live unprepared—unready to meet our Lord. How dare we remain sinful and defiled? Why are we not afraid? Why are we not troubled? Why do we not realize our peril? The weakness of the church is due to her unbelieving, unconverted, unsanctified members. The Lord would work mightily for His people if they would put off the works of darkness and be clothed with His righteousness. God calls upon every one who names the name of Christ to depart from all iniquity, to be “not slothful in business, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord.” [Romans 12:11.] Why is it that so little praise and thanksgiving is offered to God? It is because the spirit of the deceiver has taken the world captive. Let church members strive to realize their own deficiency. Let them see that they are standing in their own light, and that darkness is the result.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 18

    God calls upon those who claim to have a knowledge of the truth to show by unquestioning obedience that they are faithful soldiers of the cross. Let not those who stand under the blood-stained banner of Prince Emmanuel do anything that will dishonor the cause for which they are fighting. Christ expects His soldiers to be brave and loyal and true.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 19

    The work that Christ did on this earth, His followers are to do. With the power and efficiency brought by the Holy Spirit, they are to carry forward His plan for the restoration of the divine image in humanity. The Lord will do great things for them when they work under the Holy Spirit’s guidance. But they must place their entire dependence on God.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 20

    For the last twenty years a subtle, unconsecrated influence has been working to lead men to look to men, to bind up with men, to neglect their heavenly Companion. Many have turned away from Christ. They have failed to appreciate the One who has declared, “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:20.]17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 21

    Let us do all in our power to redeem the past. Making God our trust, let us go out into the waste places of the earth to work for the salvation of perishing souls. We shall meet with close and trying times. Temptation and trial will come. But the Lord is an all-powerful helper. He desires those who work for Him to move forward with singing, because He co-operates with every unselfish effort.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 22

    “Hearken unto me, ye that follow after righteousness, ye that seek the Lord; look unto the rock whence ye are hewn, and to the hole of the pit whence ye are digged. Look unto Abraham your father, and unto Sarah that bare you; for I called him alone, and blessed him, and increased him. For the Lord shall comfort Zion; he will comfort all her waste places; and he will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the Lord; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody.” [Isaiah 51:1-3.] In the future, we shall understand this Scripture better than we do now.17LtMs, Ms 13, 1902, par. 23

    Larger font
    Smaller font