Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 10 (1895)


Ms 24, 1895

Sermon/Address by Mrs. E. G. White at Armadale, Australia

Armadale, Australia

November, 1895

Previously unpublished.

“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal. But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness.” [Matthew 6:19-23.] 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 1

If we keep our eyes fixed upon Christ and His teaching, we will discern those things which are of supreme importance, and our course of action will be in harmony with that discernment. Our desire will be to please Christ, and we will keep inquiring, What shall I do to be saved? At best our life here is “as a vapor, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” [James 4:14.] We know not how soon the hand of death may be laid upon us, and it is of the highest importance for us to know that we have made our peace with God. 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 2

“God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16.] But our faith must be more than a casual assent to the idea that Jesus has come to our world and died; it must be a faith that makes Christ a personal Saviour. All the world may believe, but it will not help you one whit, unless you know that Christ is your Saviour. 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 3

You may attend meeting and make every effort, apparently, to enjoy religion, but that is not enough. You must understand that you have that faith that centers in Jesus, so that you can say, He saves me. 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 4

“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, ... but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven.” [Matthew 6:19, 20.] The treasures you have—your intellect, your talents, your influence—are not your own, but are gifts lent you by God, that you may develop a character which will be worthy of eternal life. Every soul that works in God’s lines is working for his own present and eternal good. As reasonable beings we should strive most earnestly for the gift of eternal life. 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 5

We may be surrounded by influences that would take our attention from God and heavenly things; it was so in the days of Noah. It is no more favorable to form a character for the future eternal life now than it was then. But the Lord would have saved every soul that obeyed. He gave the inhabitants of the Noachic world one hundred and twenty years of probation, but they refused His offers of mercy, and perished in the waters of the flood. “Whatsoever a man soweth, that must he also reap.” [Galatians 6:7.] No blast blights that crop, no palmer worm destroys it. The reaping time will come, for we have a God who understands every action of our lives. 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 6

All who have an eye single to the glory of God will know how to lay up their treasure in heaven. They will be “laborers together with God” [1 Corinthians 3:9], wearing Christ’s yoke and bearing His burdens. Their ambitious prospects, their ideas of what they will do, will be lost, for they will realize that they are not their own. We have but a little time here in which to develop such a character that God can say to us, “Child, come up higher. I have proved and tested you, and I can trust you to enter heaven’s courts and not rebel.” But those that are selfish, those that are living for themselves, can never enter the kingdom of God. “There shall in no wise enter into it anything that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie, but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.” [Revelation 21:27.] 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 7

Our Saviour has given us directions as to how we may win eternal life. He left His heavenly home, and clothing His divinity with humanity came to this world to show that only by becoming connected with divinity could man keep the law of God. Humanity of itself is a tainted, corrupted offering, but through Jesus Christ, moral power has been brought to man. It was in answer to His prayer, a prayer that cleft the shadow of hell and entered the holy place of God, that the heavens were opened and the glory of God, like a dove of burnished gold, hovered over the Son of God, and from the highest heaven was heard the voice, “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.” [Matthew 3:16, 17.] 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 8

The long human arm of Christ encircles the race, while with His divine arm He grasps the throne of the Infinite. Satan will tell you that you are a sinner, and that it is of no use for you to pray; but sinners are just the ones who can pray, for Christ said, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” [Mark 2:17.] Christ has opened the way for our prayers to ascend to God, and the fragrance of Christ’s righteousness ascends with the prayer of every repentant sinner. His spotless character is imputed to all who will come confessing their sins. We are not left in this world as orphans, for Christ has united fallen man to the Infinite God. No one who comes to the Father through Him is left helpless. 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 9

Christ has been tempted on all points like as we are. In the wilderness He met the temptations which beset man, and did not fall over a single point. Baffled on every point, Satan left the field a conquered foe. He has left us an example that we should follow in His steps, and if we fail to do this, that perfect example will come up before us on the day of judgment, leaving us without excuse. God has furnished His people with power, in order that they may stand in their own God-given manhood, and be victorious in this world, the scene of the conflict between Christ and Satan. 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 10

Christ has overcome on our behalf. He suffered and died that we might be conquerors. He told His disciples what they would meet; He showed them the plan of the battle, but told them that they were not to be afraid, for He was the Captain of their salvation. “We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” [Ephesians 6:12.] “In this world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” [John 16:33.] 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 11

Christ claims every individual in this world as His. He died just as much for the sinner who does not accept Him as for those who do. By creation and redemption we are His; our minds, our reason, our strength belongs to Him; all that we are and have is His. What are you doing with the power God has given you? You may say, This is a big world, and I can do so little. But let each one do what he can. His duty is right where he is. It may look to you that it does not amount to much, but in the books of heaven it is written, He has done his best, and I can trust him with heavenly treasure. 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 12

To every man God has given his work. Their time, their intellect, their money are to be used to God’s glory. How are you glorifying God? What words have you spoken that will be a blessing to those around you? If we would be like Christ we must do the work He did. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,” He said, “because the Lord hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; He hath sent me to heal the broken hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised.” [Luke 4:18.] 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 13

We are dependent upon God for everything that we have, and with all the power that He has given us we should work for His glory. Bring God into everything you do. Connect with the One upon whom you depend for all the necessities of life. Let your prayers continually ascend to heaven for that grace which you must have in order to be an overcomer. The tempter is near, and he is working, and you must bring religion into all the business transactions of life if you would keep him out. Give God all the power of your mind, and you will receive help and strength for the warfare. 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 14

“No man can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air, for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not neither do they spin: and yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” [Matthew 6:24-29.] 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 15

It is the duty of parents to teach their children to be missionaries. You claim to be servants of the living God. Are you giving to the younger members of the Lord’s family the care which they should have in their character building? Do you feel the burden of bringing them to Christ as in the days of Christ, when mothers came with their children to Jesus? The disciples would have sent these mothers away, but that Saviour who had been a child Himself, and who in His childhood had hungered after sympathy, watched the mothers as they travelled the dusty road in order to bring their children to Him, and He said to the disciples, “Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not; for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” [Matthew 19:14.] Would that mothers could believe that and would surround their children with care and hallowed influences, keeping away every association that has a tendency to corrupt them. Would that they might bring their children in prayer to the Master, pleading with Him for help to train them for the courts above. By doing this, they would be laying up treasure in heaven. 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 16

Beside the value of one soul, the whole world sinks into insignificance. The heavenly intelligences, thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand, wait for men to fix their eyes upon Jesus; living not for self but for the glory of God, they may co-operate with them in the work of saving souls. “I, if I be lifted up,” said Christ, “will draw all men unto me.” [John 12:32.] Why then do men not come to Christ? Ask yourself that question. What idol have you erected in your heart in the place of God? What stumbling block have you placed in the way of sinners, over which they will fall on their way to the city of refuge? Do you devote your time to the study of trying to keep pace with the ever-changing and never-satisfied fashions, or are you taking your position on the platform of eternal truth, that you may be as a light set on a hill, living epistles read and known of all men? 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 17

No language can express the love of Jesus Christ for the human soul. Leaving His home on high He came to seek for the lost sheep, and there was joy in heaven when He returned, saying, “I have found the sheep that was lost.” [Luke 15:6.] “The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty: he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.” [Zephaniah 3:17.] Let not your hearts be troubled. Jesus has not forgotten you. He is preparing mansions in the kingdom of glory for every one who will believe on His name. Whosoever cometh to me, He says, I will in no wise cast out. [John 6:37.] Do not lose eternity out of your reckoning. Are you prepared for that life that measures with the life of God? Are you prepared to see the King in His beauty and cast your golden crowns at His feet? “Yet a little while, and he that shall come will [come] and will not tarry.” [Hebrews 10:37.] 10LtMs, Ms 24, 1895, par. 18