Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 17 (1902)


Ms 134, 1902

His Own Received Him Not


October 30, 1902 [typed]

Previously unpublished.

“His own received Him not.” [John 1:11.] 17LtMs, Ms 134, 1902, par. 1

As the result of the impenitence of the Jewish nation, Christ gave a final testimony in regard to their doom. These words were spoken on the occasion of His triumphal entry into Jerusalem. The record of Christ’s inexpressible anguish over the impending destruction of the Jewish nation should be carefully studied now; for the destruction of Jerusalem foreshadowed the destruction of the entire world at Christ’s second advent. 17LtMs, Ms 134, 1902, par. 2

“And when He was come near, He beheld the city, and wept over it, saying, If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes. For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, and shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.” [Luke 19:41-44.] 17LtMs, Ms 134, 1902, par. 3

For a thousand years God had granted blessings and responsibilities, privileges and opportunities, to His chosen people. For a thousand years He had dealt with them as a loving Father deals with a disobedient son. But they had not glorified God by fulfilling His purpose. For a thousand years their impenitence and selfishness had come up before Him as a memorial. The time for their punishment had come. 17LtMs, Ms 134, 1902, par. 4

With prophetic vision Jesus beheld the destroying angels, armed with drawn swords, over the doomed city. He beheld the nation He had labored to save, scattered in all parts of the world. He beheld His vineyard, through neglect, become a wasted wilderness. Looking upon the devoted city, and weeping with anguish that could not be restrained, He exclaimed, “If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace!” Then with pale and quivering lips He pronounced the irrevocable sentence, “But now they are hid from thine eyes.” [Verse 42.] 17LtMs, Ms 134, 1902, par. 5

Christ could see not only the whole record of the course of the nation, but also the trend of events from year to year, from age to age, that led to the terrible condition of the Jewish nation at the time He came to this earth. If the loss of one soul is a calamity, if one soul is of more value than a whole world, what must have been the anguish of Christ’s heart when it became necessary to pronounce the doom of a whole nation! 17LtMs, Ms 134, 1902, par. 6

The Saviour wept because of Israel’s failure to be God’s great instrumentality for converting souls from error and leading them into the truth. From age to age He had witnessed the prevalence of apostasy and backsliding. Continually He had offered them His atoning grace, only to have His invitations persistently refused. Before His mental vision came a mournful, retrospective view of grace resisted, privileges abused, opportunities unappreciated,—a picture of hollow formalism in the place of honor to God’s law; of teaching for doctrine the commandments and traditions of men. National apostasy had almost completed the nation’s ruin. Christ’s messengers had been despised, His prophets slain, His servants humiliated, beaten, cast into prison. Every indignity had been heaped upon those who were heaven’s acknowledged nobility, of whom the world was not worthy. 17LtMs, Ms 134, 1902, par. 7

“Unto you therefore which believe He is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, and a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed. But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” [1 Peter 2:7-9.] In this Scripture a distinction is made between the obedient and the disobedient. 17LtMs, Ms 134, 1902, par. 8


But while Christ was weeping over Jerusalem, the city that He beheld was not the only scene before Him. He knew that the destruction of Jerusalem was but a symbol of the destruction of a world who will not take warning—the impenitent souls for whom He was about to give His life as the great sacrificial offering for the redemption of the world. His omniscient eye discerned the greater calamity, the destruction of the world, this time not by a flood, but by fire. 17LtMs, Ms 134, 1902, par. 9

The tears of Christ embraced all time and gave the world a lesson on the sure result of transgression of His holy law. The antediluvian world was destroyed because they transgressed God’s law. They would not heed the admonitions given them. The inhabitants of Sodom were destroyed because they would not obey the laws of God’s kingdom. Jerusalem was destroyed because the Israelites would not heed the messages that the Lord gave them. And likewise the whole world will finally be destroyed because of the transgression and impenitence of its inhabitants in the closing period of its history. 17LtMs, Ms 134, 1902, par. 10