The Bible Echo


July 2, 1894

Not Self, But Christ


It is in looking upon our sinful condition, and talking and mourning over our wretchedness, that distress becomes more keen, and pain accumulates. Let the sinner arise in the strength of Jesus; for he has no strength of his own, and let him assert his liberty. Let him believe that the Lord has spoken truth, and trust in Him, whatever may be the feelings of the heart. Let the sinner say, I will look away from my own misery, from the wound of the serpent, to the uplifted Saviour, who has said, “Him that cometh to Me, I will in nowise cast out.” Look upon Jesus. “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” BEcho July 2, 1894, par. 1

It is your privilege to believe that Christ has borne your sins; for God hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all. You are under the shelter of the sure refuge, under the cover of the atoning blood of the acceptable sacrifice. BEcho July 2, 1894, par. 2

All legalism, all the sorrow and woe by which you may encompass yourself, will not give you one moment of relief. You cannot rightly estimate sin. You must accept God's estimate, and it is heavy indeed. If you bore the guilt of your sin, it would crush you; but the sinless One has taken your place, and though undeserving, He has borne your guilt. By accepting the provision God has made, you may stand free before Him in the merit and virtue of your Substitute. BEcho July 2, 1894, par. 3

Christ is the friend of sinners. When the scribes and Pharisees accused Him of eating, with publicans and sinners, Jesus said, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” If you feel yourself to be the greatest of sinners, then Christ is just what you need; for He is the greatest of Saviours. Lift up your head, and look away from yourself, away from the poisoned wound of the serpent, to the Lamb of God, who taketh away the sins of the world. What will all your groaning and the torturing of your soul avail? You may entertain thoughts that condemn you, but in them there is no salvation. Put away your thoughts, and receive the thoughts of God, through which your mind may be elevated, your soul purified and uplifted. The Lord says: “For a small moment have I forsaken thee; but with great mercies will I gather thee. In a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee, saith the Lord thy Redeemer.’ Why will you carry your burden of sin, when Christ has come to be your burden bearer? Roll your sins at the foot of the cross. Unload! unload! He takes away the sins of the world. “I, even I am He that blotteth out thy transgressions for Mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins.” BEcho July 2, 1894, par. 4

You have been pronounced a sinner, and Christ has announced Himself a Saviour. Accept the remedy God has provided for you in a sin-pardoning Saviour. How would you have felt had you been in the camp of Israel, and seen the people groaning and shrieking in distress because of their swollen and painful wounds, when the brazen serpent was uplifted, and when by one look they might be healed? Would you not have exclaimed, “why do they not look at the uplifted serpent? How strange it is that they do not perform the one simple act by which they may receive healing!” But is it not as inconsistent for you to refuse to look at the crucified Saviour? Heed the invitation: “Seek ye the Lord while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near; let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.” BEcho July 2, 1894, par. 5

Why should the repenting sinner forsake his thoughts?—It is because they are not in accordance with truth. He is tempted to believe that because of his sins God has given him up to the will of his enemy, and that there is no pardon for so great a sinner as he. But all these thoughts are dishonouring to God, because man is God's possession, both by creation and redemption. “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him [as his personal Saviour, and accepts Him as the only provision whereby he can be saved] should not perish, but have everlasting life.” You are one of the “whosoever may believe.” But while you cherish unbelief, and permit feeling to govern you, your case will look hopeless to yourself. Forsake these unbelieving thoughts. God says: “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways.... For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” BEcho July 2, 1894, par. 6

“God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Moses prayed that God would show him His glory, “and the Lord descended in the cloud, and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord. And the Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty.” This is the character of the God in whom you are to put your trust. “God is love.” Repeat this sentence whenever temptation presses upon you. Remember that He is just and merciful, true and gracious, and will by no means clear the guilty. God can be just, and yet be the justifier of him that believeth in Jesus. He will accept you just as you are; for there is no hope of your becoming better until you come to Jesus for pardon and sanctification. Mourning and weeping will not purify you. You may mourn your life away in unbelief and in bitterness of soul; but the power to cleanse the vilest sinner is vested wholly in Him who can save unto the uttermost. BEcho July 2, 1894, par. 7

God does not ask you to feel that Jesus is your Saviour, but to believe that He died for you, and that His blood now cleanseth you from all sin. You have been bitten by the serpent, and as the serpent was lifted up in the wilderness that the dying might look and live, so Christ was lifted up, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. Saving faith is simplicity itself. You must cry no more; you must cease to hang down your head as a bulrush. Look to the uplifted Saviour, and, however grievous may have been your sins, believe He saves you. All the remedies and medicines of the world would have failed to cure one soul who had been bitten by the venomous serpent; but God had provided a remedy that could not fail. “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.” Be not among the number to whom the Saviour said, “Ye will not come unto me that ye might have life.” Oh, how He longed to save them; for while we were yet sinners (not waiting for us to make ourselves good), Christ died for us. BEcho July 2, 1894, par. 8

Take the word of Jesus as more sure and valuable than any word that can come from the human agent. Thank God with your whole heart and soul and voice that you are barricaded with the rich promises of His infallible word, so that the wicked one shall not touch you. God will give you the Holy Spirit, even though it may seem to you that it is too good to be true. “What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” BEcho July 2, 1894, par. 9