Notebook Leaflets from the Elmshaven Library, vol. 1


Christ the Pattern Man

What a life was that of Christ? He was just as certainly fulfilling His mission as the Pattern Man when toiling as a carpenter, and hiding the great secret of His divine mission from the world, as when He trod the foaming white-capped billows on the Sea of Galilee, or when raising the dead to life, or when dying [as] man's sacrifice upon the cross, that He might lift up the whole race to a new and perfect life. Jesus dwelt long at Nazareth, unhonored and unknown, that the lesson in His example might teach men and women how closely they may walk with God in even the common course of daily life. How humiliating, how rude and homely, was this condescension of the Majesty of heaven, that He might be made one of us. He drew the sympathy of all hearts by showing Himself capable of sympathizing with all. The men of Nazareth in their questioning doubts asked, “Is not this the carpenter,” the son of Joseph and Mary? 1NL 73.5

Heaven and earth are no wider apart today than when common men of common occupation met angels at noonday, or when on Bethlehem's plains shepherds heard the songs of the heavenly host as they watched their flocks by night. It is not the seeking to climb to eminence that will make you great in God's sight, but it is the humble life of goodness, of fidelity, that will make you the object of the heavenly angels’ special guardianship. The Pattern Man, who thought it not robbery to be equal with God, took upon Himself our nature, and lived nearly thirty years in an obscure Galilean town, hidden away among the hills. All the angel host was at His command, yet He did not claim to be anything great or exalted. He did not attach “Professor” to His name to please Himself. He was a carpenter, working for wages, a servant to those for whom He labored, showing that heaven may be very near us in the common walks of life, and that angels from the heavenly courts will take charge of the steps of those who come and go at God's command. 1NL 73.6

O that the spirit of Christ might rest upon His professed followers. We must all be willing to work and toil, for this is the lesson Christ has given us in His life. If you had lived for God in common things, doing your work purely and faithfully when there was no one to say it was well done, you would not be in your present position. Your life you could make faithful by good words wisely spoken, by kind deeds thoughtfully done, by the daily manifestation of meekness, purity, and love. In view of all the light you have had, I fear you have made your final move. You have given Satan every advantage. 1NL 74.1