Sermons and Talks, vol. 1


Talk Faith, and Move Forward

(The closing address presented at the Australasian Union Conference session, Cooranbong, N.S.W., July 23, 1899.)

“These words spake Jesus, and lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify Thy Son, that Thy Son also may glorify Thee: As Thou hast given Him power over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as Thou hast given Him. And this is life eternal, that they might know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent. I have glorified Thee on the earth: I have finished the work which Thou gavest Me to do” (John 17:1-4) 1SAT 304.1

While we know Christ in one sense, that He is the Saviour of the world, it means more than this. We must have a personal knowledge and experience in Christ Jesus, an experimental knowledge of Christ, what He is to us, and what we are to Christ. That is the experience that everyone wants. Now, I cannot have it for any of you, nor can you have it for me. The work that is to be done for us, is to be through the manifestation of the Holy Spirit of God upon human minds and human hearts. The heart must be purified and sanctified. 1SAT 304.2

I need not tell any of you that it is so, because you know it. Not one of us needs to feel a doubt as to where we are, or to think, “I wish I knew where I stood before God,” but, by living faith, we must sink ourselves in God; and when we do that, His life will shine upon us. There is not a particle of need of our being in a state of inefficiency and coldness. 1SAT 304.3

What is the matter with us? “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not, and it shall be given him.” It shall be given him. There are no “ifs” nor “ands” about it. “But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering” (James 1:5, 6). 1SAT 305.1

You pray, and ask God for wisdom, strength, and efficiency, and feel you must have them. But perhaps, right after that prayer, it will seem as though a hellish shadow of Satan was cast right athwart your pathway, and you see nothing beyond. What was that? Why, the devil wanted to obscure your faith in that cloud. But there is no necessity for you to do that. Is feeling to be our criterion, or is it to be the word of the living God? Are we to sink our faith in the cloud? That is what Satan wants us to do. But we should not give him so much pleasure as that. What are we going to do? 1SAT 305.2

I have had that cloud settle upon me at times, but I knew that God was there just the same. Since this conference began, I have hardly been able at times to sit up. When I came to the meeting first, I came by faith, and I didn't know as I could say anything. I had been in such terrible sickness that I could hardly tell my own name. But I said, I shall go; I am going to put myself in the channel of light, and there I am going to remain; then I shall expect the Lord to help me. (I have a great deal of talking to do with the Lord in the night, and I always know He will help me.) When I came in here I was so weak I did not know if I could speak or not. But you know how He gave strength to me, and the last time when I read that long paper to you, He gave me strength, and I thank Him that I had strength to do it. I have been astonished at the measure of strength given me. 1SAT 305.3

“Ask in faith, nothing wavering.” Don't let one single suggestion of the devil come in. It is to be “nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea” (Verse 6). The Lord will do great things for us if we will only show our trust in Him. 1SAT 306.1

I remember when I was in Switzerland, the darkness of the enemy came over the pathway when I was trying to do a work for God there. I wanted them to do a special work in erecting some buildings, and I tried every way to bring them around. Finally, after standing there so long, and I could do no more, the meeting closed, and I went in my room. I said, I will take right hold of the promises of God, and those promises are “yea, and amen,” and I believe they are mine. 1SAT 306.2

Well, I said, “Lord teach me what to do in this emergency, for I am not going to give this up, or waver in the matter at all.” Now, the Lord helps them that are of one mind, and it had seemed that there were as many different minds as there were different people. We wanted a school building and a meeting place. 1SAT 306.3

While I was praying, I said, “I put my trust in Thee. Thou wilt keep that which I have committed to Thee. Thou must strengthen my faith.” I kept holding right on; and as I prayed it seemed that the sweet Spirit of God just went right through the room, wave after wave, and every particle of unbelief or anything like it was brushed away, and we carried every point; and so the building was put up. 1SAT 306.4

What we want is that faith that will not let go, a faith that will not fail or be discouraged. I know your faith is to be tried, and I know the banner of truth has got to be lifted in places all around here. “Why,” says one, “how can we do all this if the Lord is coming so soon?” Why, the Lord can do more in one hour than we can do in a whole lifetime, and when He sees that His people are fully consecrated, let me tell you a great work will be done in a short time, and the message of truth is to be carried into the dark places of the earth, where it has never been proclaimed. 1SAT 306.5

When we first came to Melbourne I was very sick. Some of you know something about that. I had to be propped up with pillows, and they would carry me in their arms up into their hall, and there I would speak to the people. But all the time I had the presence and blessing of God. It was a most precious time to me. 1SAT 307.1

When we come to the hardest places, we may know that all heaven is interested and will bear us up, if we will not fail or be discouraged. Cling to the mighty One. Do not talk unbelief at all, because the more you talk unbelief the more unbelief you will have; and the more you talk darkness, the more darkness you will have; and the more you talk light, the more light you will have; and the more you talk faith, you will have faith. 1SAT 307.2

I want to read a few more verses. [Verses 14-19, quoted.] The truth of God must sanctify the whole man, body and soul. It is not the truth to you unless you practice it. 1SAT 307.3

Our precious Jesus gave up all heaven to come to this world that He might sanctify us through the truth. Will we be sanctified? In His life and example, His lessons and His words, there was the sanctification of the Spirit of God. Sanctification was upon Him for us. God Himself worked through humanity, just as humanity must work through humanity. That is why He took humanity upon Himself that He might teach humanity how to work for itself. He took humanity that He might experience death in our behalf, that we might have life and immortality through His life and death. 1SAT 307.4

“Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on Me through their word” (Verse 20). Now, that prayer of Christ's is for us that we may be sanctified through the truth. “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” (Verse 21). Get out the coldness from your heart; get out the evil surmisings; get out every bad thought; and let the Lord Jesus take the throne of the heart and reign there. 1SAT 308.1

“And the glory which Thou gavest Me I have given them” (Verse 22). The character that God gave Him, He has given us. “That they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that Thou hast sent Me, and hast loved them, as Thou hast loved Me” (Verse 22, 23). 1SAT 308.2

Can we take that in? It is a wonderful thing, that God loves them that believe on Him as He loves Christ Himself. We are made one with God, and we want that oneness. We want to seek Him earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints, and we want the spirit of the Third Angel's message. We want to realize that the end of all things is at hand; that speech is a talent; and that faith is the gift of God; and we must work and pray that God may preserve that faith. 1SAT 308.3

You must put your foot right on the Word, and say, I believe; I will believe; I will press to the mark of the prize, and everything that hinders me shall be swept away; I will not allow anything to interpose between my soul and God. 1SAT 309.1

No, the dark shadow of Satan will come right across our pathway if we let our faith sink into it. But we must do as the eagle does when he is in the cloud and bewildered in the fog. He does not go one way and another as though distracted, but presses upward through the cloud, until he comes into the light above. And so we should press upward beyond the hellish shadow of Satan, when he tries to eclipse the rays of light that come from God. 1SAT 309.2

Now, we want the life of Christ in our hearts to make us one, and there will be united action. We must press to the mark of the prize of the high calling which is in Christ Jesus our Lord; and what we need is that living, active faith that takes God at His word. We must have it, and God will let us have it if we will. 1SAT 309.3

We must not be discouraged. We want to get rid of unbelief; we do not want to talk it, or act it, or think it, but press forward to the mark of the prize of the high calling that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. I feel anxious, because I know that the time has come when God's people should put on their beautiful garments. “Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.” It is the word of infinite power that He wants you to eat and drink. He wants you to eat His flesh and drink His blood, and then the power of God will be in your midst. Then the voice will be touched with a peculiar power. 1SAT 309.4

After the passing of the time in 1844, I remember we were a sorrowful little company. There was a little boy who had twenty-five cents, and he threw it into the mud puddle, because he said he would not need it, for the Lord was coming. And afterward he was seen hunting in the mud puddle for his twenty-five cents. I thought, How many of us would do just like that. There was one brother who had been out praying with others, and he began to say in a loud voice, “Great, great, great is the Lord; and greatly to be praised.” I think he repeated that over many times, and his face was shining. Before he finished, the power of God was upon us. While it is true that we were disappointed, yet we had the blessing of God. 1SAT 310.1

“And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book” (Daniel 12:1). Let everyone inquire, “Is my name written there?” Do not think about your brethren and sisters for fear they are not ready, but think about yourself. You want to know where you are, and to know that Christ is formed within, the hope of glory. You want to be constantly singing, and when you do that you will stop your criticizing. If you are beholding Him, you will not have time for anything else. And if you see His face, it will be reflected in your face, and all this mourning and groaning is dishonoring God, for “whoso offereth praise, glorifieth God.” 1SAT 310.2

You are going to have trials in your churches because there are murmurers and complainers and faultfinders there. Go straight ahead and be cheerful. And when Brother Irwin and Brother Haskell return to America, they are going to have trials there. Do not let your head be cast down, or feel discouraged, but go forward, firm in Jesus Christ, keeping your eye fixed on the crown of life which Christ, the righteous judge, shall give you in that day. 1SAT 310.3

Just keep praising God, and when the devil tempts you, sing. When Christ was a child He was tempted in every way, and what did He do? He sang psalms, and praised God, and there was music in His voice. And there was an impression made upon the hearts and minds of those who heard Him. He wants you to have heaven in view, and heaven is a good deal nearer than you think. God's holy, anointed ones are right by you, and here is His church, the greatest object of His love that it is possible for Him to have. He is watching over every one of us. 1SAT 311.1

I love Him because He first loved me. I love Him because He gave His life for me. And God forbid that I should be a coward. When the children of Israel went out to fight, God told them to sing, and as soon as they began to sing, their enemies fled, for they saw the whole army of heaven before them. They were afraid of their destruction and fled. God wants us to vanquish the enemy. Let us pray as we never prayed before. We do not pray half enough. We ought to pray and have regular praise meetings together. May God bless you, and may the Spirit of God be with us.—Manuscript 93a, 1899. (MR 900.31) 1SAT 311.2