Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 20 (1905)


Ms 78, 1905

A Message to Believers



Portions of this manuscript are published in OHC 92; 2MCP 559; 7BC 973; 6MR 27-28.

“Except a man be born again, he cannot enter the kingdom of heaven.” [John 3:3, 5.] Those who are born again have a spiritual force and a spiritual knowledge that develops in the character the attributes of the divine nature. The life that they live is a new life, a life conformed to the will of God. Into all the business transactions into which the Christian enters, he is to bring the mind and spirit of Christ. He is to exert a saving influence. He is not to be deceived when men who walk crookedly talk of principle. These men exert a strange, misleading influence, an influence that will ruin anyone who will yield to it. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 1

Every step, thank God, may be taken with positive certainty. Christ will abide with His believing people. “Every one that asketh receiveth, and he that seeketh findeth.” [Matthew 7:8.] Christ does not leave His church to be a strange, undenominated power in the world. He states plainly, “By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one to another.” [John 13:35.] You are God’s denominated people. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 2

There can be no connection between those who receive and practice the truth and the subjects of Satan’s kingdom. Knowing that we have the whole army of satanic agencies to war against, Christ presents to the subjects of His kingdom the principles upon which His government is founded. He makes the matter plain to us that we have needs which must be supplied, and that there must be a close connection between the giver and the receiver. The Holy Spirit will be given to every soul who seeks for a living connection between the human and the divine. All who seek for the gift of the Holy Spirit will understand that when they cast their helpless souls upon Jesus Christ, confessing their sins, and praying for one another, He will come near to bless them. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 3

The Sovereign of heaven is working upon the hearts of His human agents, giving them blessings that exceed all their expectations. The Lord Jesus places Himself in the channel where His human subjects may approach Him. And He permits even the touch of faith for a stolen blessing. But He made known to the one who had been healed that He recognized the touch of faith, even though the people were pressing close upon Him. “If I can but touch the hem of His garment,” the woman said, “I shall be made whole.” [Matthew 9:20, 21.] She worked her way through the multitude until she saw her opportunity. That touch of faith brought healing. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 4

There was in her experience a lesson of too much value to be passed over. The faith of this suffering, longing soul must be recognized. Turning round, Christ said, “Who touched Me?” “Thou seest the multitude thronging Thee,” the disciples said, “and sayest Thou, Who touched Me?” [Luke 8:45; Mark 5:31.] But Christ replied, “Somebody has touched Me, for I perceive that virtue has gone out of Me.” [Luke 8:46.] Then the woman, grateful and penitent, told her pitiful story. “I but touched the hem of Thy garment,” she said, “And I was made whole.” 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 5

In His dealing with this woman, Christ asserted and magnified the royalty of His grace by exerting his healing power as the great Medical Missionary upon a subject apparently the most unpromising. And God was glorified. This circumstance was an inspiration to many hearts. Praise and glory ascended from that dense, crowded company. Many needy applicants for the Holy Spirit were made better acquainted with Christ and His merciful, compassionate love. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 6

The trouble with the church today is that they have lost their faith. The Lord calls for the simple, childlike faith that trusts without questioning. Christ is the fountain of life, constantly receiving to communicate. Does not the record of the day of Pentecost testify to His abundant grace? Throughout our world channels have been opened through which God works to refresh and strengthen His church. He will keep his people constantly supplied with grace if they will connect and co-operate with the one great source of power. Every day the church might be receiving grace from the heavenly supply. What an influence this would have on the world. Why do we not realize our privileges? 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 7

The rite of baptism is administered in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. These three great powers of heaven pledge themselves to be the efficiency of all who submit to this ordinance and who faithfully keep the vow they then make. “As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in Him; rooted and built up in Him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving. Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.” [Colossians 2:6-8.] It is here that the great danger comes in. A worldly spirit and worldly practices have taken the place that Christ should have in the life. “For in Him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in Him, which is the head of all principality and power. ... Buried with Him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with Him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised Him from the dead.” [Verses 9, 10, 12.] 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 8

“If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affections on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory. ... Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any; even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things, put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts.” [Colossians 3:1-4, 12-15.] 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 9

God has opened the way for us to receive help from the source of all power. He has accepted His people in the Beloved. Those who thus unite with the church by baptism are sealed as men and women who have been born again of water and of the Spirit. They have entered upon a new life. They are to be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption which is in the world through lust. They are to keep themselves free from every dishonest practice. Their example is to be a continual witness to the power of heavenly grace. The Spirit of truth is to control them. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 10

We are to be consecrated channels through which the heavenly life is to flow to others. The Holy Spirit is to animate and pervade the whole church, purifying and cementing hearts. Those who have been buried with Christ is baptism are to rise to newness of life, giving a living representation of the life of Christ. The commission has been given to us. Upon us is laid a sacred charge. “Go then,” Christ says to them. “Make disciples of all nations, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded, and baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” “And lo,” He declared, “I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:19, 20.] You are dedicated to the work of making known the gospel of salvation. Heaven’s perfection is to be your power. As God’s followers, by converted lives, make known the power of His grace, a clear distinction is drawn between him that serveth God and him that serveth Him not. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 11

Since my recent sickness, my mind has been deeply stirred. In the night season I have been bearing to the church messages of a most solemn, earnest character, urging believers to prepare the way of the Lord. God calls upon His people to repent of their sins and be converted. They cannot afford to defile their souls by transgression. In the church here below, we are to prepare to unite with the church above. Every advance that we make in this life toward Christian perfection is a message to the world. Christ’s teaching is the only teaching to which the members of the church should lend their ears. His grace is to be above every other attraction. Christ has very much to give to His waiting people, much to say to those who are willing to hear. And those to whom He speaks are to give to others the invitation to come to the marriage supper of the Lamb. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 12

Satan’s Rebellion

Angelic agencies, both good and evil, are striving for the mastery, and every influence that is now exerted is to be closely investigated. Not all the members of the church are asleep, and some have a full sense of the perils of the hour. But there are many who are careless and indifferent. There are church members who are using Satan’s methods to deceive those around them. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 13

The Lord would have our minds aroused regarding the influence of evil angels. Christ does not tell us of the danger threatening us from the attacks of the apostate foe without furnishing us with power to resist every attack. Having assumed the rightful heirship to the world, He is fully able to lead His army on triumphantly in the warfare with spiritual foes. The seat or throne of Satan is in this world, and students of prophecy are to be fully awake regarding the powers they are to meet. Those who have not a firm hold on our leader Christ Jesus, those who are careless and indifferent will find themselves bound by the power of evil. Those who are careless in regard to their religious standing are building on the sand. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 14

There are those who greatly desire power and who will use inventions that Satan places in their hands to gain power. The evil has acquired wonderful power, and this power will be manifested as apparently a most wonderful blessing to the race. Speaking of Satan, our Lord declared that he abode not in the truth. He was an exalted leader in the heavenly courts. But a desire for supremacy entered his heart. He wanted to be as God. He began to stir up rebellion, using underhand methods, winning a few at a time to his side. There followed that which had never before been seen in heaven. Satan began to place his thoughts in the minds of the angels. When he supposed that his suggestions and misrepresentations of God were entertained, he presented those whom he had deceived as originating these suggestions. He presented the suggestions as something that must be investigated. He easily gathered large numbers to listen to his specious devisings and thus, without compromising himself, succeeded in causing the minds of many to become disaffected. The unsuspecting were ensnared and taken. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 15

This is the snare that Satan will lay for souls today. Once he was loyal, but the inspired statement is that he abode not in the truth. With his deceptive influence, he has been at work in our churches, bringing in one error after another to bewilder minds. Those who have been willing to listen to the fascinating delusion, “Ye shall be as gods” [Genesis 3:5], have entered upon a course of action under his guidance, thinking to accomplish some great thing. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 16

In the night season I am presenting these matters to our churches, giving the warning that all who give heed to the sophistries and doctrines of the enemy will be filled with a wonderful zeal in some lines and will deceive, if possible, the very elect. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 17

When Satan rebelled, there was war in heaven; and he, with all his sympathizers, was cast out. He had held a high office in heaven, possessing a throne radiant with light. But he swerved from his allegiance to the blessed and only Potentate and fell from his first estate. All who sympathized with him were driven from the presence of God, doomed to be no more acknowledged in the heavenly courts as having a right there. Satan became the avowed antagonist of Christ. On the earth he planted the standard of rebellion, and round it his sympathizers rallied. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 18

In the kingdom of evil, Satan makes familiar intercourse with his associates a strength of influence to help in extending the power of selfishness. God calls upon every believer to unite with Him in His work, showing the power of the principles of heaven to sanctify the life and multiplying their qualifications by doing good. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 19

Those to whom the Lord spoke anciently were in possession of the knowledge of the true God. Their message to the world was the existence of a personal God and the unity between the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, in carrying forward the great work of redemption in every soul that is emptied of self. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 20

The Sun of righteousness came to our world to work for the uplifting of humanity. He came in humiliation and poverty, born of humble parentage, and in an obscure village. When He was thirty years of age, His public ministry began; and then the obscurity vanished, as He worked with divine power to release the souls that were controlled by demons. The power of the Lord Jesus is the only power that can cope with the fallen spirits who have taken possession of the souls of human beings. The Saviour came to our world to reveal Himself as the light and life of men. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 21

If we follow the path of self-sacrifice followed by Christ, we shall have power to overcome. But let us not forget that half-way work is of no benefit to any soul. Profession without practical work is of no avail. The Lord calls to action every one upon whom the light of truth is shining. Christ has given an example of the way in which we are to work. Every believer is to co-operate with Christ, heeding the words, “If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” [Matthew 16:24.] 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 22

God’s Purpose for His Church

The church is to be a channel of light. The members are to bring their plans of life into harmony with Christ’s plans. Their hearts are to be purified from the dross of selfishness. A power is to be set in operation that will purify, bless, and ennoble. Into every office of publication there are to be brought the attributes of Christ—a tender pity for the erring and for the fatherless and motherless. Those who do wrong are to be earnestly labored for. Let those who have had great light remember this and be tenderhearted and pitiful. Let them not be harsh and unkind, lest God treat them in the same way in which they have chosen to treat others. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 23

God calls for penitence and reformation. That there have been in our publishing houses wrongs to be dealt with is certain. Let every man and woman now put off the old man with his deeds. Crooked, worldly, selfish plans are not to be brought into our institutions. The influence of Christ’s life is to be the prevailing power. The world’s plans, the world’s policy, are to find no foothold in our sanitariums, printing offices, or schools. 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 24

A deep and thorough work of reform is needed in the Seventh-day Adventist church. The world is not to be allowed to corrupt the principles of God’s commandment-keeping people. Believers are to exert an influence that bears witness to the power of heavenly principles. Those who unite with the church must give evidence of a change of principle. Unless this is done, unless the line of demarcation between the church and the world is carefully preserved, assimilation to the world will be the result. Our message to the church and to our institutions is: “Repent ye; for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” [Matthew 3:2.] The attributes of Christ’s character are to be cherished, and these are to become a power in the lives of God’s people. “I pray not that Thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that Thou shouldest keep them from the evil. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify them through Thy truth; Thy word is truth. As Thou hast sent Me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.” [John 17:15-18.] What a statement is this! Who believes that those who profess to believe present truth are sent into the world as Christ was sent into the world by His Father? What a work Christ did! To expel the powers of darkness, to give health and strength to those who receive Him, this was His work. “As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.” [John 1:12.] 20LtMs, Ms 78, 1905, par. 25