The Bible Echo


November 20, 1899

The Cost of Salvation


God's Gift—A Changeless Law—Conviction or Conversion—The Divine Testing—Infinity Beyond

God will save no man while he continues in transgression after the light has come. The great sacrifice of the Son of God was made that it might be possible for man to become obedient through faith. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” The atonement in the offering of Christ for the sin of the world is the great argument that the law of God is binding upon every human being. “I came not,” said Christ, “to destroy the law or the prophets, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.” BEcho November 20, 1899, par. 1

The same evidence that was given by God to prove His divine authority gave a representation of His character when there was no power to save, when no arm brought salvation. In the depths of omnipotent wisdom and mercy the Father took the work of salvation into His own hand. He sent His only begotten Son into the world to live the law of Jehovah. The law, revealed in the character of Christ, was a perfect manifestation of the Father. And by His perfect obedience and the sacrifice of Himself, which He through the eternal Spirit once offered up unto God, He has fully satisfied the justice of the Father, and purchased not only reconciliation, but an everlasting inheritance in the kingdom of heaven for all those whom the Father has given Him. BEcho November 20, 1899, par. 2

The everlasting inheritance is purchased only for the elect. Says the apostle Peter: BEcho November 20, 1899, par. 3

“According as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue; whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” “Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure; for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: for so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” BEcho November 20, 1899, par. 4

Christ is everything to us. We cannot even repent unless divine impressions are made upon the heart. While Christ pardons none but the penitent, those whom He pardons are first made repentant. Those who have that faith which works by love and purifies the soul, have direct testimony in the word of the grace bestowed by an ever-living Saviour. Without the saving grace of God, man cannot endure the test of temptation. He is fit for no good work. Did the wonderful miracles wrought by Christ bring the Jewish nation to repentance?—No; the Jews who witnessed these miracles wickedly charged Him with performing them through Beelzebub, the prince of the devils. Bethsaida and Chorazin, though they witnessed miracles of sufficient power to have convinced the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, did not submit to the evidence of truth. BEcho November 20, 1899, par. 5

These wonderful manifestations of the power of God produced the same effect upon the Jews as the power the gospel now exerts upon the multitude. They are convicted, but not converted. They are determined not to yield their will to the will of God. The danger of resisting the heavenly manifestations is presented before them, but they frame excuses for not yielding. Many are deceiving their own souls. They do not love Jesus, nor accept the terms of salvation. They act out the same spirit as did the disciples who turned from Christ because they did not immediately comprehend His words—“Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you.” The Holy Spirit's power is working upon mind and heart, the understanding is convinced, the conscience is aroused, and yet Christ says of them, “Ye will not come unto Me, that ye might have life.” BEcho November 20, 1899, par. 6

A test will come to every soul. The natural faults of character, if not determinedly overcome for Christ's sake, will completely master the human soul. Daily there is a battle to be fought which will cost mortification. It may cost reputation; but Jesus risked all this and a hundred fold more that He might bring salvation within the reach of every soul. All the humiliation that man could bring He endured, that through His amazing condescension man might become the sure stepping-stone to his fellow-man, so sinful, so weak in moral power. Why, then, should fallen man be unwilling for Christ's dear sake to become a partaker of shame and reproach? BEcho November 20, 1899, par. 7

When the grace of God works upon the heart, a fervent zeal, a heavenly spirit, a melting, overflowing sympathy for souls that are impenitent, is seen in the life. The humble follower of Christ delights to contemplate His wondrous, surpassing beauty. He has discovered that the “Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us,” and he loves to think of the beauty and matchless charms of Christ's character. Day by day a transforming power is at work upon his life and character, and is filling his soul with an inexpressible love. He finds that the Saviour is willing to be his guide in this life, and his portion to all eternity. His heart is won, his choice is made. He yokes up with Christ, and has a compelling power in winning souls to the Saviour. He cannot change the heart, but he may convince souls of the truth, which defines their duty, and convicts of sin. BEcho November 20, 1899, par. 8

This subject is but dimly comprehended. It will bear searching, and the patient, persevering, diligent seeker for truth will be rewarded. Every spiritual muscle is to be put to the stretch to comprehend the word. And after long continued taxation of intellect, of patience, of the whole man, he will find an infinity beyond. The prayer of the great apostle, whose heart was burning to know and understand these things, should be our prayer: BEcho November 20, 1899, par. 9

“That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.” BEcho November 20, 1899, par. 10

Mrs. E. G. White