Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 12 (1897)


Ms 128, 1897

The Only True Mediator


November 28, 1897 [typed]

Portions of this manuscript are published in FLB 76; TMK 73; TDG 341; 6BC 1115; 7BC 913-914; 7ABC 470; 17MR 24.; CTr 293-294. +Note

“And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness; God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.” [1 Timothy 3:16.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 1

Who is able to describe the last scenes of Christ’s life on earth, His trial in the judgment hall, His crucifixion? Who witnessed these scenes? The unfallen worlds, the heavenly universe, God the Father, Satan and his angels. What scenes they were for the disciples. Wonderful events took place in the betrayal of Christ. During His mock trial in the judgment hall, His accusers found nothing by which they could prove Him guilty. Three times Pilate declared, “I find no fault in him at all.” [John 18:38; 19:4, 6.] But nevertheless he ordered him to be scourged, and then delivered Him up to suffer the most cruel death that could be devised. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 2

Christ’s death on the cross was the cause of the bitterest disappointment to the disciples. But He rose from the dead, and revealed Himself to them. For forty days He remained with them, instructing them preparatory to His departure from them. “Behold I send the promise of my Father upon you; but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem until ye be endued with power from on high. And he led them out as far as Bethany, and he lifted up his hands and blessed them. And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven. And they worshiped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God.” [Luke 24:49-53.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 3

“Go ye therefore,” was Christ’s command, “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 always, even unto the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:19, 20.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 4

The more we consider this subject, the greater depths we find, and yet there are depths that we do not reach as we study the Redeemer’s glory. It is the glory of the Prince of life, and the mightiest powers of man cannot reach it. The angels themselves desire to look into this mysterious and wonderful theme, the redemption of the human race. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 5

Writing by the inspiration of the Spirit of God the apostle Peter says, “Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing ye rejoice with joy unspeakable, and full of glory; receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls. Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come to you; searching what or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. Unto whom it was revealed that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven, which things the angels desire to look into.” [1 Peter 1:8-12.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 6

Our great High Priest completed the sacrificial offering of Himself when He suffered without the gate. Then a perfect atonement was made for the sins of the people. Jesus is our Advocate, our High Priest, our Intercessor. Our present position therefore is like that of the Israelites, standing in the outer court, waiting and looking for that blessed hope, the glorious appearing of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 7

When the high priest entered the holy place, representing the place where our High Priest is now pleading, and offered sacrifice on the altar, no propitiatory sacrifices were offered without. While the high priest was interceding within, every heart was to be bowed in contrition before God, pleading for the pardon of transgression. Type met antitype in the death of Christ, the Lamb slain for the sins of the world. The great High Priest has made the only sacrifice that will be of any value. The incense that is offered now by men, the masses that are said for the deliverance of souls from purgatory, are not of the least avail with God. All the altars and sacrifices, the traditions and inventions whereby men hope to earn salvation are fallacies. No sacrifices are to be offered without; for the great High Priest is performing His work in the holy place. No prince or monarch dare venture within the holy enclosure. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 8

In His intercession as our Advocate Christ needs no man’s virtue, no man’s intercession. Christ is the only Sin-bearer, the only Sin-offering. Prayer and confession are to be offered only to Him who has entered once for all into the holy place. Christ has declared, “If any man sin we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.” [1 John 2:1.] He will save to the uttermost all who come to Him in faith. He ever liveth to make intercession for us. This makes of no avail the offering of mass, one of the falsehoods of Romanism. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 9

The so-called intercession of the saints is the greatest falsehood that can be invented. Priests and rulers have no right to interpose between Christ and the souls for whom He has died, as though invested with the Saviour’s attributes, and able to pardon transgression and sin. They themselves are sinners. They are only human. One day they will see that their deceptive doctrines have led to crimes of every stripe and type, to adultery, robbery, falsehood. They are responsible for many terrible wrongs which men have perpetrated upon their fellow men. For all this the Judge of the whole earth will call them to account at His bar. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 10

The case of every soul that has been imprisoned, every human being that has been tortured, has been noted. The recording angel has sustained the martyrs who would not worship idols, or allow their minds and consciences to become the instruments of men who were instigated by Satan to perform wicked deeds. These things are done under the rule of the man of sin, who has placed himself as God, sitting in the temple of God, and taking upon himself the prerogatives of God, that he may carry out his own schemes. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 11

The mightiest human being, whatever may be his claim, is not infinite. He cannot understand infinity. Christ plainly stated, “No man knoweth the Son but the Father.” [Matthew 11:27.] A teacher was once endeavoring to present the exaltation of God, when a voice was heard, saying, “We cannot as yet understand who He is.” The teacher nobly replied, “Were I able fully to set forth God, I should either be a god myself, or God Himself would cease to be God.” 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 12

“It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard and hath learned of the Father cometh unto me”—not through confessionals or priests or popes, but through Me, your Saviour. “Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.” [John 6:45-47.] This is the absolute Godhead. The mightiest created intellect cannot comprehend Him; words from the most eloquent tongue fail to describe Him. Silence is eloquence. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 13

Christ represented His Father to the world, and He represents before God the chosen ones in whom He has restored the moral image of God. They are His heritage. To them He says, “He that hath seen me hath seen the Father.” “No man knoweth the Father save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.” [John 14:9; Matthew 11:27.] No priest, no religionist, can reveal the Father to any son or daughter of Adam. Men have only one Advocate, one Intercessor, who is able to pardon transgression. Shall not our hearts swell with gratitude to Him who gave Jesus to be the propitiation for our sins? Think deeply upon the love the Father has manifested in our behalf, the love that He has expressed for us. We cannot measure this love. Measurement there is none. We can only point to Calvary, to the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. It is an infinite sacrifice. Can we comprehend and measure infinity? 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 14

“For if when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement. Wherefore as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: ... therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.” [Romans 5:10-12, 18, 19.] Here is the mystery of faith and the righteousness of Christ. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 15

“And for their sakes,” Christ prayed, “I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe in me through their word; that they all may be one, as thou Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us; that the world may believe that thou hast sent me ... Father I will that they also whom thou hast given me be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me; for thou lovest me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee, but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me. And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it, that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.” [John 17:19-21, 24-26.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 16

Here we see the great Intercessor presenting His petition to His Father. No middle man comes between the sinner and Christ. No dead prophet, no buried saint is seen. Christ Himself is our Advocate. All that the Father is to His Son, He is to those whom His Son in His humanity represented. In every line of His work Christ acted as a representative of the Father. He lived as our substitute and surety. He labored as He would have His followers labor, unselfishly appreciating the value of every human being for whom He suffered and died. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 17

The promise of the Father was pledged that if Christ clothed His divinity with humanity, if He endured the test and trial that Adam failed to endure, His obedience would be counted as righteousness to His people. He would conquer in their behalf, and place them on vantage ground. Thus they would be given a probation in which they might return to their loyalty by keeping God’s law. In this Christ would see of the travail of His soul, and be satisfied. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 18

The race might be wiped out from the universe, another creation might populate the earth; but the throne of Justice must be eternally and forever made secure. In making His infinite sacrifice, Christ would exalt and honor the law. He would make known to the fallen race the exalted character of the law of God’s government, which could not be in any way changed to meet man in his sinful condition. Christ alone could restore honor to God’s government before the worlds unfallen and the heavenly universe. By the sacrifice He was about to make all doubts would be forever settled, and the human family would be saved if they would return to their allegiance. The cross of Calvary would be looked upon by the unfallen worlds, by the heavenly universe, by the satanic agencies, by the fallen race, and every mouth would be stopped. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 19

Christ suffered in man’s stead, giving His life for the life of the world. All who repent and turn to Him as to a personal Saviour are His heritage. Christ’s death proved God’s administration and government to be without a flaw. Satan’s charge in regard to the conflicting attributes of justice and mercy was forever settled beyond question. Every voice in heaven and out of heaven will one day testify to the justice, mercy, and exalted attributes of God. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 20

It was in order that the heavenly universe might see the conditions of the covenant of redemption that Christ bore the penalty in behalf of the human race. It pleased God to bruise His only begotten Son, to suffer temptation to come to Him, to permit Satan to develop his attributes and the principles of his government. The enmity of the apostate against the Commander of all heaven must be seen and realized. It must be shown that Satan’s mercy is cruelty. What a battle was this, between Christ and Satan. It was waged up to the very time of the resurrection, yes, up to the time of the ascension. Then the conflict was transferred to Christ’s followers. Satan wars against Christ’s representatives. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 21

“It pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief; when thou shall make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.” “Behold, my servant shall deal prudently; he shall be exalted and extolled, and be very high. As many were astonished at thee; his visage was more marred than any man, and his form more than the sons of men; so shall he sprinkle many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him; for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider.” [Isaiah 53:10; 52:13-15.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 22

Thus it was. Not only did those who witnessed the crucifixion of Christ never lose the impression made upon their minds; but this terrible scene revealed what humanity will do when under the control of Satan’s government. It was shown what the outcome of Satan’s methods and counsels would be if he were to control the world. Those under his influence would make void the law of God. If left to themselves, men would bring in the principles of Satan’s government. Those who heard the reports of Christ’s death, even from those that were against him, were convicted. They commenced searching the Scriptures. Those that were converted to Christ told many others of the awful scene, and thus were fulfilled the words, “So shall he sprinkle many nations.” [Verse 15.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 23

“Thus saith the Lord God, I will also take of the highest branch of the young cedar, and will set it; I will crop off from the top of his young twigs a tender one, and will plant it upon an high mountain and eminent; in the mountain of the height of Israel will I plant it, and it shall bring forth boughs and bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar; and under it shall dwell all fowl of every wing; in the shadow of the branches thereof shall they dwell.” [Ezekiel 17:22, 23.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 24

Christ was this branch, the highest branch of the highest cedar. He was the plant of the Lord’s setting. “As the apple tree among the trees of the wood so is my beloved among sons. I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste.” [Song of Solomon 2:3.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 25

Christ’s every act was acceptable to the Father. God loved His Son in His humiliation. He loved Him most when the penalty the transgressors of the law fell on Him. In that terrible working out of Satan’s enmity, the apostate was joined by the professed worshipers of God, for whom Christ had done so much. These departed from the principles of the law of Jehovah, making void His law by their traditions. Christ said to them, Ye teach for doctrines the commandments of men. [Matthew 15:9.] Christ was the Majesty of heaven. He was the Commander of the heavenly hosts. But He put off His crown, and divested Himself of His royal robe to take human nature upon Himself, that humanity might become familiar with humanity. As the world’s Redeemer He understands all the experiences that humanity must pass through. He found Himself in fashion as a man. He humbled Himself to do the greatest work that could be done for the human race. A beam of righteousness from heaven shone amid the moral darkness of this earth, to enlighten every man that cometh into the world. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 26

Christ longed for careworn, oppressed, weary human beings to come to Him, that He might give them the light and life and joy and peace that is to be found no where else. The veriest sinners were the objects of His deep, earnest interest, pity, and love. But when in the greatest need of human sympathy, in the hour of His greatest trial and heaviest temptation, the most promising of His disciples left Him. He was indeed compelled to tread the winepress alone, and of the people there was none with Him. An atmosphere of apostasy surrounded Him. On every side could be heard sounds of mockery, taunting, and blasphemy. What then was the outlook for His disciples, left in a world that would not tolerate the Son of the living God? Satanic agencies full of animosity strove to inspire the human family to deadly enmity against the law of Jehovah. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 27

Christ’s spirit was grieved because the men of His own nation looked upon him as a root out of dry ground, without form or comeliness that they should desire Him. The Lord of hosts suffered with His Son, but He did not abate one jot of the penalty. The world’s Redeemer heard the people taking the oath of allegiance to a rival sovereign. He heard them divorcing themselves from God, refusing to obey His rule, saying, “We have no king but Caesar.” [John 19:15.] As He hung on the cross, they said of Him, “He trusted in God: let him deliver him now if ye will have him; for he said, I am the Son of God.” [Matthew 27:43.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 28

The Lord permitted men to go a certain length, and then as in the destruction of the old world, He rose and punished the inhabitants of the world for their iniquity. The earth will disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 29

In His prayer to His Father Christ said, “I have glorified thee on the earth; I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. And now, O Father, glorify thou me thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.” [John 17:4, 5.] Christ’s work was finished when He expired on the cross, crying with a loud voice, “It is finished.” [John 19:30.] The way was laid open, the veil was rent in twain. Man could approach God without sacrificial offerings, without the service of priest. Christ Himself was a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek. Heaven was His home. He came to this world to reveal the Father. His work on the field of His humiliation and conflict was now done. He ascended up into the heavens, and is forever set down on the right hand of God. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 30

How carefully Christ Himself folded up the garment which had clothed His mortal body. He laid them away as one would fold up garments which were never again to be used. In Joseph’s tomb He wrapped Himself in the garment of immortality, and then waited in the world for a sufficient length of time to put beyond doubt the evidence that He was indeed risen from the dead. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 31

Christ’s life on this earth had been a life of toil, a busy, earnest life. He rose from the dead to become familiar with His disciples preparatory to His ascension, when He should be glorified before the heavenly universe. He was ready for the leavetaking. He had authenticated the fact that He was a living Saviour; His disciples need no longer associate Him with the tomb of Joseph. They could think of Him as glorified amid the heavenly host. “Let not your hearts by troubled,” He said; “ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions, if it were not so I would have told you; I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself, that where I am, there ye may be also.” [John 14:1-3.] 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 32

All heaven waited with eager earnestness for the end of the tarrying of the Son of God in a world all seared and marred with the curse of transgression. He ascended from the mount of Olives in a cloud of angels, who triumphantly escorted Him to the City of God. Not in His own individual interest did He go, but as the covenant Redeemer of His believing sons and daughters, who are made thus through faith in His name. The plea He makes is, “Father, I will that they also whom thou hast given me be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me; for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.” [John 17:24.] What is the Father’s answer? “And let all the angels of God worship him.” [Hebrews 1:6.] The pledge made before the foundation of the world is renewed; Christ’s relation to His Father embraces all who receive Him by faith as their personal Saviour. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 33

The time had come for the universe of heaven to accept their king. Angels and archangel, cherubim and seraphim, would now stand in view of the cross. The Father bows his head in recognition of the One of whom the priests and rulers had said, “He trusted in God; let him deliver him now if he will have him.” [Matthew 27:43.] The Father accepted His Son. No words could convey the language of heaven, or God’s expression of satisfaction and delight in His only begotten Son, as He saw the completion of the Atonement. Christ’s sacrifice was in every way satisfactory. In Him mercy and truth met together; righteousness and peace kissed each other. The Father embraced His Son, and this includes all who receive Him. “To them gave he power to become the sons of God.” [John 1:12.] They are His chosen ones, joint-heirs with Christ in the great firm of heaven. They overcome as He overcame. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 34

What a contrast was Christ’s reception on His return to heaven to His reception on this earth. In heaven all was loyalty. There was no sorrow, no suffering, to meet Him at every turn. There were no scowling priests to exercise their ingenuity in finding some word of His which they could misinterpret, and thus gain opportunity to harass, abuse, insult, and deride Him. They were given opportunity to acknowledge Him, but they chose Barabbas rather than Christ. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 35

In proportion to Christ’s humiliation and suffering is His exaltation. He could have become the Saviour, the Redeemer, only by <first> being the Sacrifice. What a mystery there is in the godliness of Christ. Having magnified the law and made it honorable by accepting its conditions in saving a world from ruin, Christ hastened to heaven to perfect His <work,> and to accomplish His mission by sending the Holy Spirit to His disciples. Thus He would assure His believing ones that He had not forgotten them, though now in the presence of God, where there is fulness of joy forevermore. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 36

The Holy Spirit was to descend on those in this world who loved Christ. By this they would be qualified, in and through the glorification of their head, to receive every endowment necessary for the fulfilling of their mission. The Lifegiver held in His hands not only the keys of death but a whole heaven of rich blessings. All power in heaven and earth was given to Him, and having taken His place in the heavenly courts, He could dispense these blessings to all who receive Him. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 37

Christ has said to His disciples, “It is expedient for you that I go away; for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you, but if I depart, I will send him unto you.” [John 16:7.] This was the gift of gifts. The Holy Spirit was sent as the most priceless treasure man could receive. The church was baptized with the Spirit’s power. The disciples were fitted to go forth and proclaim Christ, first in Jerusalem, where the shameful work of dishonoring the rightful king had been done, and then to the uttermost parts of the earth. The evidence of the enthronement of Christ in His mediatorial kingdom was given. God testified to the great work of Christ in reconciling the world to God, by giving the true understanding of the kingdom which He was establishing upon the earth, the foundation of which His own hand had laid. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 38

The Father gave all honor to His Son, seating Him at His right hand, far above all principalities and powers. He expressed His great joy and delight in receiving the crucified One, and crowning Him with glory and honor. And all the favors He has shown to His Son in His acceptance of the great atonement, are shown to His people. Those who have united their interests in love with Christ are accepted in the Beloved. They suffered with Christ in His deepest humiliation, and His glorification is of great interest to them, because they are accepted in Him. God loves them as He loves His Son. Christ, Emmanuel, stands between God and the believer, revealing the glory of God to his chosen ones, and covering their defects and transgressions with the garments of His own spotless righteousness. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 39

How full and free are the blessings to be bestowed on all who come to God in the name of His Son. If they will observe the conditions laid down in His Word, He will open to them the windows of heaven, and pour them down a blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it. It is because of unbelief that Jesus cannot do many mighty works by converting hearts, and restoring the sick to health. The Father and the Son are equally interested in securing man’s salvation. With joy the Lord will give from the overflowing fountain of His love to those who uplift the standard of Jehovah. God’s law is the foundation of His government in heaven and earth. If God’s people will sanctify themselves by obedience to His precepts, the Lord will work in their midst. He will renew humble, contrite souls, making their characters pure and holy. 12LtMs, Ms 128, 1897, par. 40