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    SERMON ELEVEN

    SAVING FAITH

    TEXT: Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and He that shall come will come, and will not tarry. Now the just shall live by faith; but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul. Hebrews 10:35-39.OFH1 178.1

    THE tenth day of the seventh month of the Jewish year 1844, came and passed, and left impressions upon the minds of believers not easily effaced; and although more than a quarter of a century has passed since the memorable period, yet that work has not lost its interest and force upon the minds of those who participated in it. Even now, when one who shared in that work, and who feels its hallowed influence rekindling upon his mind - if in obedience to the injunction of the apostle, when he says, “Call to remembrance the former days, in which, after ye were illuminated, ye endured a great fight of afflictions; partly whilst ye were made a gazing-stock, both by reproaches and afflictions; and partly, whilst ye became companions of them that were so used” - shall speak of that solemn work, of that consecration of all, made in full view of eternal scenes, and of that sweet peace and holy joy which filled the minds of the waiting ones; his words will not fail to touch the feelings of all who shared the blessings of that work, and have held fast.OFH1 178.2

    And those who participated in that movement are not the only ones who can now go back in their experience, and feast upon the soul-reviving and faith-inspiring realities of the past. Those who have since embraced the Advent faith and hope, and who have seen in the three messages of Revelation 14, the past consecration and blessedness, the present work of preparation, and the future glory, may go back with us to the autumn of 1844, and with us share the rekindling of the heavenly illumination. Was that our Jerusalem, where we waited for, and enjoyed, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit? Then, as all Christians, as well as Christ’s first disciples who were present on the occasion, have looked back to the day of pentecost with pleasure and profit, so may those who have embraced the doctrine of the Second Advent since the memorable seventh-month movement, look back to that period with all that interest which those can who participated in it.OFH1 178.3

    The impressions made and left upon the minds of believers, were deep and lasting. However far he has since departed from God and his truth, there still remains upon the soul of the apostate some faint traces of the work. Let him hear the subject afresh; let the simple facts be again brought before his mind; and he will feel upon this subject as he can feel upon no other. And those who took part in that work, who are far backslidden from God, yet cherish regard for the word of God and Christian experience, will yet feel deeply over this subject, and the faith of many of them will be resurrected to new life.OFH1 179.1

    The disappointment at the passing of the time was a bitter one. True believers had given up all for Christ, and had shared his presence as never before. They had, as they supposed, given their last warning to the world, and had separated themselves, more or less, from the unbelieving, scoffing multitude. And with the divine blessing upon them, they felt more like associating with their soon-expected Lord and the holy angels, than with those from whom they had separated themselves. The love of Jesus filled every soul, and beamed from every face; and with inexpressible desires, they prayed, “Come, Lord Jesus, and come quickly.” But he did not come. And now to turn again to the cares, perplexities, and dangers of life, in full view of the jeers and revilings of unbelievers, who then scoffed as never before, was a terrible trial of faith and patience. But God did not forsake his people. His Spirit still abode upon them, and upon all who did not rashly deny and denounce the good work in the Advent movement up to that time. And with especial force and comfort did the words of the text come home to the minds and hearts of the tried, waiting ones.OFH1 179.2

    “Cast not away therefore your confidence.” Somebody had great confidence.OFH1 180.1

    “Which hath great recompense of reward.” This confidence is not to be condemned. It is approved of the Lord, and will meet its reward.OFH1 180.2

    “For ye have need of patience.” Those who had this confidence were brought into a position of extreme trial, calling for patience.OFH1 180.3

    “That, after ye have done the will of God.” Here they had the assurance that they had done the will of God, notwithstanding their disappointments and trials.OFH1 180.4

    “Ye might receive the promise.” It is important that they retain their confidence. It is their privilege and duty to hold fast the beginning of their confidence firm unto the end, that they may receive the promise of God.OFH1 180.5

    This scripture clearly delineates the hopes of Adventists, their disappointments, their trials, their present position, and their present duties. Do you ask, Why apply all this to the subject of the Second Advent? Answer: Because Paul’s words forbid any other application. He continues, “For yet a little while, and He that shall come will come, and will not tarry.” No one will, for a moment, question that the Second Advent is the subject upon which the apostle treats. The peculiar situation of those who should be looking for the second appearing of Jesus, is the burden of his exhortation. And how wonderfully applicable are his words to those who were sadly disappointed, tempted, and tried, in the autumn of 1844. With great confidence had they proclaimed the coming of the Lord, with the assurance that they were doing the will of God. But, as the time passed, they were brought into a position exceedingly trying to faith and patience. Hence the words of Paul to them, just then, and there: “Cast not away therefore your confidence.” “Ye have need of patience.” “Ye have done the will of God.” To this decision of the apostle every true Adventist, who tasted the good word of God and the powers of the world to come, in the movement of 1844, will respond, Amen.OFH1 181.1

    “Now the just shall live by faith.” As Adventists came up to the point of expectation in the blazing light of unsealed prophecy, and the rapidly-fulfilling signs that Christ’s coming was at the doors, they walked as it were by sight. But now they stand with disappointed hopes and stricken hearts, and live by faith in the sure word, and the work of God in their Second-Advent experience. With these who hold fast, God is well pleased.OFH1 181.2

    “But if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.” Fearful words! While some believe to the saving of the soul, others doubt the work of God in the Advent movement, become impatient, cast away their confidence in the way the Lord has led his people, and give up their experience as the work of man, or of Satan, and draw back toward perdition.OFH1 182.1

    The apostle continues, as he speaks in behalf of the faithful: “But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.” These words are the language of saving faith. Having sufficient evidence that God had led them out from the world, and from a fallen church, to wait for the Son from Heaven, they stand fast. They see the chain of truth, illustrated by the three messages of Revelation 14:6-12, which explains and harmonizes the past, gives certainty to the present, and lights up the glorious future, and joyfully they embrace it. The position of the waiting ones is thus expressed: “Here is the patience of the saints; here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” Here is saving faith.OFH1 182.2

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