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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 18 (1903) - Contents
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    Ms 148, 1903

    Diary/The Need of Humility and Unity

    Oakland, California

    March, 1903

    Previously unpublished.

    This morning I cannot sleep after two o’clock. My soul is drawn out in most earnest prayer. I feel a great longing that our people at this conference shall see the necessity of humbling their hearts before God and coming into close connection with the great Teacher. They need to hide self in Christ that self may not appear. The Saviour is to be revealed in their lives. Their attitude toward one another is an index to their connection with Christ and their reception of truth and righteousness.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 1

    God is to receive all honor and glory. “Without Me,” Christ said, “ye can do nothing.” [John 15:5.] If day by day our life is hid with Christ in God, when He who is our Life shall appear, we also who by living faith have revealed Him to the world shall appear with Him.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 2

    What can be said to rid our brethren of the thought that as soon as they are placed in positions of responsibility they must exercise personal authority? Thus they lose their first love. They may do many excellent things, but they need to understand that position does not make the man. Let them realize that they are finite, and let them bear in God’s strength the responsibilities of their position. Thus they will honor and exalt the Lord Jesus.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 3

    We need to have our feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace. A sanctified peace will do much to impart the knowledge that God sent His Son to save sinners. Will our brethren consider this, and glorify God by walking softly in the footprints of Jesus Christ?18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 4

    “I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, with all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Wherefore He saith, When He ascended up on high, He led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (Now that He ascended, what is it but that He also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that He might fill all things.)18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 5

    “And He gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the working of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: that we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive.” [Ephesians 4:1-14.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 6

    Let us study these words. Not every presentation made by men is to be accepted as truth, even though in the past the Lord has used these men, and has honored them by giving them wisdom, while they have honored Him and have not eagerly sought to gather to themselves all the honor possible. When men withdraw themselves from the Lord’s keeping power, thinking themselves fully capable of managing the work of God, they allow themselves to be worked by another spirit.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 7

    Let no one suppose that because he has been used as an instrument in the hands of God, he is all-sufficient, able to stand in his own strength. Unless he takes God as his counselor, placing his dependence on Him, he will enlist under the leadership of the enemy. Then he will manifest the crookedness and subtlety of the serpent’s guile. When men join the forces of evil, they are deceived. They become possessed with the idea that the work cannot be carried forward without their talents and wisdom.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 8

    Warning Against False Doctrine

    One of the greatest perplexities we have to meet is to distinguish between that which is genuine and that which is false and misleading. Our brethren must be sharp and keen to discover the snares of Satan. Deceptive ideas must not be allowed to insinuate themselves among God’s people, ensnaring souls before it is discovered that these ideas are not of God.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 9

    Unless we are continually on our guard, error will steal in unawares, just as Satan’s sophistry was developed in the heavenly courts. The enemy adroitly presented his ideas to the angels, until their minds grasped his evil insinuations. Then he left his statements to develop in their minds. They were not as cautious as their leader and openly communicated these new theories. Thus Satan worked to undermine the confidence of the angels. Thus he lay in wait to deceive, in order that he might accomplish his purpose of exalting himself to be the chief commander.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 10

    The warnings against the deceptions of Satan come down through the ages to our own time. In all our labor to bring everlasting life to perishing souls, we must watch and pray, lest we be found as messengers of Satan. Today he presents to human minds the subtle insinuations of which he is the originator. When he can find a mind open to his craftiness, he exerts his deceptive power, and too often his suggestions are received as truths of heavenly origin. Wherever he finds opportunity he works with deceit and with guile to captivate human beings and to lead them to partake of the forbidden fruit.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 11

    Christian Fellowship and Love

    Paul continues, “But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things, which is the Head, even Christ. From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.” [Verses 15, 16.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 12

    This instruction is in perfect harmony with the light to be found in the first epistle of John:18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 13

    “These things we write unto you that your joy may be full. This then is the message which we have heard of Him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: but if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.” [1 John 1:4-10.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 14

    These plain truths mean very much to us who are living in these last days. Read and study the second chapter of first John. Then read and understand the words found in the second chapter of Revelation: “Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.” [Verses 4, 5.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 15

    Will we consider these words? The presentation of beautiful theories will not suffice, unless the love of Christ is in our hearts. This will give fragrance to our words and works. The loss of this love results in the loss of all things. Again, the Lord sends the following message:18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 16

    “Unto the angel of the church in Sardis write: These things saith He that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead. Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God. Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.” [Revelation 3:1-3.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 17

    “This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their hearts.” [Ephesians 4:17, 18.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 18

    Our ministers should dwell largely upon the love of God to sinners, speaking of that love as expressed in the gift of His only begotten Son to make an atonement for sin.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 19

    Christ instructs us as His ambassadors to teach “all things whatsoever I have commanded you.” And, He adds the promise, “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:20.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 20

    No limitations are made. Christ died for the whole world. Every human being may receive the benefits of His saving grace. Let those who have heard and received the message of salvation remember that in accepting Christ they pledged themselves to be stewards of His grace, to minister to those dead in trespasses.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 21

    Christ pledged Himself to stand as substitute and surety for human beings, should they fall through disobedience. “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 22

    In coming to this earth, Christ laid aside His glory. “He took not on Him the nature of angels: but He took on Him the seed of Abraham. Wherefore in all things it behooved Him to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of His people.” [Hebrews 2:16, 17.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 23

    Had Christ come to this world with the outward display, the power and the rank that He might have had, His object would not have been accomplished.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 24

    The Spirit of prophecy clearly indicated that an inspired teacher was to appear. Peter declared: “Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; Him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever He shall say unto you. And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people. Yea, and all the prophets from Samuel and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these things.” [Acts 3:22-24.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 25

    From the beginning of the prophetic era the coming of a distinguished Teacher had been predicted—a Teacher whose words would demand universal attention, whose power would be sufficient to overcome the power of Satan. Prophecy declared that He would “preach the gospel to the poor,” and “proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.” [Luke 4:18; Isaiah 61:2.] He was to “set judgment in the earth.” The isles were to “wait for His law.” [Isaiah 42:4.] The Gentiles were to come to His light, and kings to the brightness of His rising. [Isaiah 60:3.] The “Messenger of the covenant” was expected. The Sun of righteousness was to arise “with healing in His wings.” [Malachi 3:1; 4:2.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 26

    “When the fulness of time was come, God sent forth His Son.” [Galatians 4:4.] “Hear, O heavens,” and “be astonished, O earth!” [See Isaiah 1:2.] The long-looked-for Instructor appeared and proved to be no less than the Son of God Himself. He was the “sent of God.” He was one with the Father. But He clothed His divinity with humanity and came to this earth to reveal what God designed humanity to be, had sin never existed.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 27

    He who was without sin took upon Himself the infirmities of humanity that He might place men on vantage ground with God. In His life, He showed the union that may exist between the human and the divine, and in the strength of this union He resisted all the assaults of the wily foe. It is the privilege of men and women to become partakers of the divine nature. They may live by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 28

    “When He cometh into the world, He saith, Sacrifice and offering Thou wouldest not, but a body hast Thou prepared Me: in burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin Thou hadst no pleasure. Then said I, Lo, I come, (in the volume of the book it is written of Me,) to do Thy will, O God. Above when He said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings for sin Thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law; then said He, Lo, I come to do Thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that He may establish the second. By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Christ once for all. And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices which can never take away sins: but this man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down on the right hand of God; from henceforth expecting till his enemies be made His footstool. For by one offering He hath perfected forever them that are sanctified.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 29

    “Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that He had said before, This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 30

    “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which He hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say His flesh; and having an high priest over the house of God; let us draw near with a true heart, in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 31

    “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for He is faithful that promised;) and let us consider one another to provoke unto love and good works: not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.” [Hebrews 10:5-25.]18LtMs, Ms 148, 1903, par. 32

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