Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 6 (1889-1890)


Ms 7, 1890

Sermon/Cherish the Heavenly Light

[Battle Creek, Michigan]

February 5, 1890

Portions of this manuscript are published in 7BC 937.

Remarks of Mrs. E. G. White at the Bible School, February 5, 1890. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 1

We have the exhortation, “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.” [James 4:8.] Well, now we are to consider what “nigh” is. You want to be very nigh to God. You do not want to be standing a great way off. You will not know nor understand the voice of God; and if you hear the voice of God you can not feel the influence that comes from God. Every one that comes into the presence of Christ more closely takes in the influence of His Spirit and breathes the atmosphere which comes from Jesus Christ. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 2

As we are engaged in the solemn, serious work of investigating the Scriptures, we want to be sure, brethren, that we are in that humble position, that meekness, that teachable spirit, that the Lord can impress our hearts, that the Lord can draw us. He is drawing us. We never draw nigh to Him, but that He draws us first. It seems so difficult for us to believe that our heavenly Father means us well. It is a most astonishing thing that our sensibilities, in some way, have become so perverted that we misapply His designs toward us and His purposes, that we do not now understand that God is seeking to take our hand and to lead us step by step, onward and upward that we may be fitted to join that family in the kingdom of God that is without spot, that have been washed, that have been cleansed, that have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 3

Now, we want to be just in that position, that we shall consider all that are here, that we hope to meet them there, that we hope to meet them face to face there; and if we have this hope that we shall see them face to face there, shall we not have love inspired in our hearts, and a tenderness toward these individuals that are here? Shall we not consider them every one of them, the purchase of an infinite price—the blood of Jesus Christ? And if Christ values us so highly, then we should value, in a certain sense, ourselves in this light: that all the powers that God has given us belong to Him. And we should value every one of the precious privileges that He has given us, that we may reach out and gather the principles that He has placed right in our reach, that we may follow on to know the Lord, that we may know His goings forth are prepared as the morning. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 4

Now, the Lord wants every one of us that are here to obtain a deeper and a richer experience in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. We have precious opportunities to grow—grow in grace, grow in the knowledge of our Lord and our Saviour. Grow—how? Not earthly. Grow heavenward, grow upward, into Jesus Christ, our living Head. How shall we reach the full stature of the measure of Jesus Christ, our living Head? Well, now, we cannot grow too much. We cannot gather any too many of the precious rays of light that is flashed upon our pathway. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 5

The Lord wants that every one of us should have sanctified ears, that we should have a sanctified understanding, that Jesus Christ may move upon our minds, that it may affect our hearts and our characters so that we shall be just what He wants us to be. And what is that? Representatives of Jesus Christ in the world. What is that? What it is to be a light amid the moral darkness that prevails? It is to be a light wherever we are. A light—not to have a light and chaffy spirit—that is not the kind, because that is from beneath. But we want solidity of character. More than that, we want to know what faith is. We want to know what it is to love one another. And if we draw nigh to God, individually, then don’t you see what the result will be? Can’t you see that we will draw nigh to one another? We cannot draw nigh to God and come to the same cross without our hearts being blended together in perfect unity, answering the prayer of Christ “that they may be one,” as He is one with the Father. [John 17:11.] And therefore we should seek in spirit, in understanding, in faith, that we may be one, that God may be glorified in us as He is glorified in the Son; and that God shall love us as He loves the Son. Do you think God will love us if He sees us here right in the very last close of this earth’s history, that we are quibbling and trifling and spreading ourselves apart as far as we can, for fear that we shall have an understanding with some of our brethren? Do you suppose that that honors God? I tell you, Nay. God desires and designs that His children shall be one as Christ is one with the Father. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 6

Now, supposing that this oneness exists, why He says that all men shall know that ye are My disciples, because that ye have love one for another. [John 13:35.] And these are the divine credentials that as a people we should bear to the world. And if we bear these credentials to the world, it is Christ speaking through us; it is Christ working through us; and in the very atmosphere that surrounds us we are not only gathering light, but diffusing it. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 7

We are constantly flashing new rays of light amid the churches. While the churches have been presented before me, they are so destitute of faith that they are ready to die. God says, I have something against thee, because that we have not strengthened those that were ready to die. [Revelation 3:1, 2.] And when you shall go from this place, and when you shall go to your churches, know that your taper is kindled, not from the brains of any man living, but from the divine altar, and that you can flash the light of heaven upon the pathway of those that have been working with knees trembling, with feeble grasp, that could hardly hold the prophecies; but strengthen the things that are ready to die. Let the testimony ring forth in every church in our land; say what the Lord has done for me. If there are any here who were at South Lancaster last year, you know that it swept in the whole of the school and the church, and such living testimonies were not exceeded by those that were given in 1844 before our disappointment. Yes, they were testimonies that were meat and drink, because they strengthened those that were ready to die. They had been, as they claimed, converted for years; but the testimony was: I never knew Jesus; I never knew the Father; I never knew what it was to walk with God until the experience that I have obtained at this meeting. Now, we heard that everywhere we went. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 8

We want to say to you that God has the richest blessings to impart unto every individual among us. Brethren, you can not go to heaven on a casual faith. You cannot go to heaven believing, Yes, yes, Christ has died for me; Oh, I believe in Jesus. Is He your Saviour? Is He your Saviour today? Do you know that He saves you? That you can plant your feet upon that which will never loosen from beneath them? That you can plant your feet upon the living and eternal promises of God and the great I AM? And, brethren, there is light for us, light for us, light for the people of God; light shining amid darkness, and the darkness comprehendeth it not; because they fasten themselves where they will not have faith. Oh I implore you today to walk in the light as Christ is in the light. Don’t follow any man; but follow the light of life—follow Jesus Christ. There is light flashing from the throne of God. What is it for? Why, it is to prepare us for the perils of the last days; it is to fit up a people to stand in the day of the Lord. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 9

And you that have devoted hours to the preparation of garments, and to the decoration of things in your home, how is it with your soul, I ask you? Have you the heavenly adornment? Is Christ in you formed within the hope of glory? Why, brethren, don’t you understand that we must have a clear-cut testimony now? We cannot take up with anything superficial; we cannot listen to the words, O, be cautious, be cautious; don’t be in a hurry, you are altogether too much in earnest; why, now, don’t you know there are errors, and there are falsehoods coming in? We know it, brethren; that is why we want the light, every jot of it, flashed upon our people, that they may stand amid the perils of the last days. We have no time to serve selfish interests. I tell you the Lord is coming; and you must lift up your voice like a trumpet; cry aloud; spare not; proclaim to the house of Israel and to the house of Jacob their sins. They do not like it; they are uneasy under it; and they itching where they shall not have the words of condemnation spoken to them. Oh my soul, we need it! We need it! We need the soul temple to be cleansed. I want to get ready. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 10

At two o’clock this morning I was awake, pleading with God, What shall we do? How can we arouse the people? How can we stop the tide of unbelief that will flow in upon them, do the very best we can. There seemed to be a voice that came to me saying, Go forward and upward; I am with thee; I will be by thy side; I will impress hearts; I will sweep back the moral darkness that would gather over honest souls. Brethren, it is time that the trumpet had a certain sound. We want no uncertainty here. The Lord is coming; and we want to get ready. I want to be ready every moment; I want the oil, I want the oil of grace; I want the robe of Christ’s righteousness. I cannot do without it. I want to get ready, brethren; I want to humble my soul before God. Let us every one come low at the foot of the cross, and then He will put a word in our mouth, even praise to our God. And He wants to see it. How He wants us to catch the music of the heavenly angels; and He wants us to learn the song of thanksgiving and of praise and of adoration to our God. How He wants us to get out of ourselves. How He wants us to touch our lips with a live coal from off His altar. How He wants us to sanctify our tongue! How He wants us to sanctify our entire being! And how He wants to do for us those things that Christ commanded to do and to open for His disciples; but He said, “Ye cannot bear them now.” [John 16:12.] Supposing that they could have borne them; how much better they could have borne the terrible trial that was upon them in Christ’s crucifixion and burial. But they could not bear it. They could not bear the words. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 11

Brethren, shall we open the understanding of our minds? Shall we cleanse the soul temple? Shall we consecrate ourselves to God? What is the matter with us that we do not make the surrender? We make half work of it; we do not get our necks under the yoke, and submit to the yoke, and lift the yoke, and carry the burdens. Now, we want to do it. God help us, we will do it. And, brethren, remember, we are all the time praying for this meeting. We do not take a step. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 12

When we are writing upon the life of Christ and [see] how hard it was for the people to believe and to receive Him, notwithstanding He was the Majesty of heaven, [when we see how] unbelief had taken so firmly hold of their minds that they could not comprehend Him, then my heart ascends to God, Oh Lord, let this people see the light, and may not prejudice and unbelief come into their hearts that they will close the door that Christ can not come in. And every sentence that I write, that seems to present before me our condition as a people, there is a prayer that, as my pen addresses the lines, darts up to heaven, O God, forbid this should be the condition of thy people! O God, increase their faith; give them light—and the peace of God comes to my heart. We have met unbelief in the experienced ones. That is what hurts my soul; that is what hurts me; and that is what hurts the Spirit of the Lord. Those that ought to know, those that ought to lead the people forward and upward, they do not know how. God, open their understanding. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 13

Brethren, we are upon the very borders of the eternal world, and God wants us to have in our testimony that which will reach the hearts of the people. 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 14

We must have a testimony that all heaven is in harmony with. And the testimony that heaven is bearing to the earth is, Get ready, get ready; press together, get ready, for the Lord is at the door. Get ready, brethren. God help us to do the work. If you will only do your part—consecrate your soul, bow to the cross of Calvary, try to draw nigh to God. He is drawing nigh to you. Believe Him; He loves you. He does not want to draw you unto Him that He may bruise you, but that He may comfort you, that He may pour into your heart the oil of gladness, the oil of rejoicing; that He may heal the wounds and bruises that Satan has made. Will we take hold unitedly? Will we break all to pieces? Will we fall on the Rock and be broken? Will we fall hard? Then Jesus will gather His arms about us, and He will bind Himself up with us. Will we do it? 6LtMs, Ms 7, 1890, par. 15