Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 12

369/457

Ms 109, 1897

Dependence on God

NP

October 1897

This manuscript is published in entirety in 16MR 295-300.

“And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! how shall we do? And he answered, Fear not; for they that be with us are more than they that be with them. And Elisha prayed, and said, Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes. And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw, and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha. And when they came down to him, Elisha prayed unto the Lord, and said, Smite this people, I pray thee, with blindness. And he smote them with blindness according to the word of Elisha. And Elisha said unto them, This is not the way, neither is this the city; follow me, and I will bring you to the man whom ye seek. But he led them to Samaria. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 1

“And it came to pass, when they were come into Samaria, that Elisha said, Lord, open the eyes of these men, that they may see. And the Lord opened their eyes, and they saw; and, behold, they were in the midst of Samaria. And the king of Israel said unto Elisha, when he saw them, My father, shall I smite them? shall I smite them? And he answered, Thou shalt not smite them: wouldest thou smite those whom thou hast taken captive with thy sword and with thy bow? Set bread and water before them that they may eat and drink, and go to their master. And he prepared great provision for them, and when they had eaten and drunk, he sent them away, and they went to their master. So the bands of Samaria came no more into the land of Israel.” [2 Kings 6:15-23.] 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 2

When the people of God are brought into strait places, when apparently there is no escape for them, the Lord alone must be their dependence. There is, you think, a need to meet Picton, If you do meet him in controversy, to vindicate the truth, be sure that the Lord identifies His interest with you. Nothing should lead you into debate with men who have no honor for God or for man. Always refuse to enter into such a contest. If the honor of God demands that the truth be vindicated in a discussion, put self out of sight, and let Christ alone appear. Nothing can then befall you as a representative of Christ but that will redound to His name’s glory. Open the heart in contrition to God. Do not follow your opponent, but cast the seeds of truth, leaving a present Christ to take care of the question. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 3

“How shall we do?” [Verse 15.] Stand upon the platform of eternal truth, and see the salvation of God. Bear in mind that we are praying for you. So not let self manifest a spirit of retaliation. Guard your words, that they may drop as silver and gold. Never for a moment lose the consciousness that you are Christ’s ambassador, speaking in Christ’s stead. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 4

The object of all ministry is to keep self out of sight, and to let Christ appear. The exaltation of Christ is the great truth that all who labor in word and doctrine are to reveal. At our late meeting men and women have been stirred. Thoughts that are strange and new have taken possession of human minds. Men are musing in their hearts, “Are not these words sensible and true?” Every thought of this kind is the result of the Holy Spirit’s working on the human mind. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 5

If the advocates of these new themes and doctrines are sustained by the Word, if their spirit and actions make them witnesses for God, if the truth light shines through them in clear, bright beams, if they reveal a patient, kind, forbearing spirit, the efforts made by the adversaries of truth, as in Christ’s day, will be powerless. If these misapply truth, as they surely will, if they misinterpret and wrest the Scriptures in order to sustain error, if they make personal threats, that they may stir your passions to retaliate, as they certainly will do, keep your words pure and calm. Remember that Jesus is by your side to help you to reveal His Spirit and not your own natural temperament. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 6

You are God’s delegated messenger. You are to act in His place. Then represent Christ, and not your individual, rash temperament. Angels of God are close beside you, and they will keep you in peace, and will give you words to speak, which will be as a sweet odor. This will show that you have the Spirit of Christ and of the truth. It is not by your show of knowledge or of superior talent or philosophy that you reveal Christ, but by keeping your own soul emptied of your natural self. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 7

“Then answered I and said unto him, What are these two olive trees upon the right side of the candlestick and upon the left side thereof? And I answered again, and said unto him, What be these two olive branches which through the golden pipes empty the golden oil out of themselves? And he answered me and said, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my lord. Then said he, These are the two anointed ones, that stand by the Lord of the whole earth.” [Zechariah 4:11-14.] 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 8

These empty themselves into the golden bowls, which represent the hearts of the living messengers of God, who bear the Word of the Lord to the people in warnings and entreaties. The Word itself must be as represented, the golden oil, emptied from the two olive trees that stand by the Lord of the whole earth. This is the baptism by the Holy Spirit with fire. This will open the soul of unbelievers to conviction. The wants of the soul can be met only by the working of the Holy Spirit of God. Man can of himself do nothing to satisfy the longings and meet the aspirations of the heart. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 9

Keep Jesus constantly in view, telling of one mightier than yourself. God would have His own people true to principle, servants of great Creator, doing their work as shepherds of the flock of God, ever presenting the greater Shepherd, that the eyes of their hearers may be attracted to the fountain of light, and that Christ our Lord shall be exalted in word, in manner, in spirit, in calm self-possession. Let the watchword be, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away to sin of the world. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 10

“Then the angel that talked with me, said, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my Lord. Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but my Spirit, saith the Lord of hosts.” [Verses 5, 6.] The work before every soul who has the light of Bible truth is to allow himself to be worked by the Holy Spirit. God’s people are appointed to prepare the world for the great event of the coming of our Lord. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 11

Teachers of truth need always to remember that the church militant is not the church triumphant. The servants of God must not strive for the mastery [or] seek to be recognized as great men, but as good men. Envy and jealousy has corrupted many souls to their ruin. God’s servants must learn to lean upon no human support. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 12

They are not to be dependent on human praise or deference, or depressed by human censure. Neither are they to look for human recompense. Their record is not kept by human figures, but kept by One on high. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 13

Bear in mind, ye ministers of God, that you must keep your own spirit free and uncontaminated by the alloy of human devising. There is a high and holy standard for you to reach. Let the peace of God calm and soothe your minds and hearts. Then with Paul you can say, “It is a small matter to be judged of you or any man’s judgment.” [1 Corinthians 4:3.] 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 14

My message to you, my brother, is that the great cause of truth is not to be imperilled by wayward human impulse or caprice. Let your shining not be as the meteor flash, to go out in darkness. Let your light be the reflected light of the Sun of Righteousness. Let the bright and morning star appear shining steadily above you in changeless glory. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 15

Often the very best men, those whom God uses to His name’s glory, are unrecognized by human wisdom, but not for one moment are they forgotten by God. When John was exiled to the isle of Patmos, there were many who thought him to be past service, an old and broken reed ready to fall at any time. But the Lord saw fit to use him in that lonely island home where His servant was imprisoned. The world and the bigoted priests and rulers rejoiced that they were at last rid of his ever fresh testimony: “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon and our hands have handled of the word of life; (for the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and show unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us.) That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.” [1 John 1:1-3.] 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 16

This whole chapter is full of brave courage, of hope and faith and assurance. It was because of this testimony, so amazing to those who wished to forget Christ, who hated the crucified Redeemer, whom they had rejected, that they wished to get that voice beyond their hearing, that his testimony might no more be a witness against their wicked deeds in crucifying the Lord of glory. But they could not put him in any place where his Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ could not find him. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 17

Christ’s servants who are true and faithful may be unrecognized and unhonored by men who may be united with Seventh-day Adventists; but the Lord will honor them. They will not be forgotten by God. He will honor them by His presence because they have been found true and faithful. Those who have grown old in the cause and work of God have an experience of great value for the church. God honors His servants who have grown old in His service. The most glorious truths concerning the last chapters of this earth’s history were given to the aged disciple whom Jesus loved. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 18

How vain are the devices of man against God! Man may propose and plan and devise, but the Lord disposes of all matters to His own name’s glory. Let us bear in mind that one of the most painful occurrences connected with religious controversy is the too often ungenerous, unrighteous bearing of self in those who are engaged in it. They speak sharp things which are only reflected back to injure themselves. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 19

All controversies are to be shunned, for they seldom advance the truth. Human passion should never appear in religious controversy. We are not to silence and humiliate, but to convince men of the truth as it is in Jesus. Evil is to be overcome with good. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 20

The Lord will take in hand all who are unreasonable and wicked and deceiving. “Vengeance is mine, and I will repay, saith the Lord.” [Romans 12:19.] Let no movement be made that will discourage inquiry or examination, but meet all opposition with meekness of wisdom. Let not one hard stone be thrown to hit an opponent. In the course he pursues he is deciding his own eternal destiny. Hard references, personal applications, charging upon an opponent is not the work given to any mortal who is in Christ’s service. We must be true as stool to principle, true to our loyalty to God, all the while considering that he who opposes the truth is opposing the counsel of God against himself. Let your heart melt with pity for the one whose heart is enclosed with the meshes of Satan. While supposing that he is doing God service, he is fighting against the truth. He cannot discern this to be truth, because he will not come to the truth to search for the truth with unprejudiced mind. The love of Christ should be in our hearts. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 21

All who advocate the truth should have that faith that works by love and purifies the soul. There is to be no compromise of the truth. Steadfast principle is to be maintained by Christ’s followers who love the truth. They must show what the truth has done for them in transformation of character, making them kind and courteous peace lovers and peace makers. Such shall be called the children of God. We who claim to believe the truth should reveal its fruits in our words and character. We are to be far advanced in a knowledge of Jesus Christ, in the reception of His love for God and for our neighbor, in order to have the sunlight of heaven shining in our daily life. Truth must reach down to the deepest recesses of the soul, and cleanse away everything unlike the spirit of Christ, and the vacuum be supplied by the attributes of His character who was pure and holy and undefiled, that all the springs of the heart may be as flowers, fragrant with perfume, a sweet smelling savor, a savor of life unto life. 12LtMs, Ms 109, 1897, par. 22