The Upward Look


The Meaning of Christian Perfection, December 5

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. Philippians 4:13. UL 353.1

What does God require? Perfection; nothing less than perfection. But if we would be perfect, we must put no confidence in self. Daily we must know and understand that self is not to be trusted. We need to grasp God's promises with firm faith. We need to ask for the Holy Spirit with a full realization of our own helplessness. Then when the Holy Spirit works, we shall not give self the glory. The Holy Spirit will graciously take the heart into His keeping, bringing to it all the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness. We shall be kept by the power of God through faith. UL 353.2

When we are daily under the control of God's Spirit, we shall be commandment-keeping people. We may show to the world that obedience to God's commands brings its own reward, even in this life, and in the future life eternal blessedness. Notwithstanding our profession of faith, the Lord by whom our actions are weighed sees but an imperfect representation of Christ. He has declared that such a condition of things cannot glorify Him. UL 353.3

It means much to commit the keeping of the soul to God. It means that we are to live and walk by faith, not trusting in or glorifying self, but looking to Jesus our Advocate as the Author and Finisher of our faith. The Holy Spirit will do its work upon a heart that is contrite, but never can He work upon a self-important, self-righteous soul. In his own wisdom such a one would mend himself. He interposes between his soul and the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will work if self will not interpose.... UL 353.4

The Holy Spirit is ready to cooperate with all who will receive Him and be taught by Him. All who lay hold on the truth and are sanctified through the truth are so united with Christ that they can represent Him in word and action.... May the Holy Spirit speak to the hearts of God's chosen people, that their words may be as choice as gold as they give the bread of life to those in transgression and sin.... UL 353.5

It is God's pleasure and will that the blessings bestowed on man shall be given in perfect completeness. He has made provision that every difficulty may be overcome, every want supplied through the Holy Spirit. Thus He designs that man shall perfect a Christian character. God would have us contemplate His love, His promises, given so freely to those who have no merit in themselves, He would have us depend fully, gratefully, rejoicingly in the righteousness provided for us in Christ. To all who come to God in His appointed way, He freely listens.—Manuscript 148, December 5, 1897, “The Christian Life.” UL 353.6