The Youth’s Instructor


November 30, 1893

Words to the Young


“Be not deceived; God is not mocked; for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.... For he that soweth to his flesh, shall of the flesh reap corruption: but he that soweth to the Spirit, shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” If young men who have been perusing Satan's books of skepticism, had given the powers of their mind to the diligent searching of the field which contains the hidden treasure, they would have had a different character today from that which they have. How different would their record be in the books of heaven, and how different their cases when the books shall be opened, and every man shall be rewarded according as his work shall be. YI November 30, 1893, par. 1

“And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” The day of judgment is not far distant, and will you dare to brave that day in your own unsanctified independence? Will you stand in warfare against God and the holy angels on that day when every soul shall stand definitely under the banner of him whom he has chosen to serve? Will you care to deny your Maker to his face? YI November 30, 1893, par. 2

We do not want your deception to continue upon you, if you have any inclination to be undeceived. We read that God hardened the heart of Pharaoh. How?—It was by revealing himself as a God who had power above all gods. The Governor of the universe, the God that ruleth in the heavens and upon earth, sent this wicked, idolatrous, tyrannical king a message to let his people go. When the king refused to let Israel go, God made his power apparent in sending the plagues, and in exhibiting his might by great signs and wonders. But Pharaoh resisted the power of God. It was the king's sowing time. God does not put a spell upon men to force them to resist him, but the very evidence that should have convinced Pharaoh, only hardened him in unbelief, and at every exhibition of the power of God, his heart hardened in obstinacy. YI November 30, 1893, par. 3

When light comes to the soul through God's appointed agencies, and it is not received and acted upon, there is manifest a contempt of God, and stubborn resistance increases as additional light comes to convince of error, and manifest truth. The case of Pharaoh stands forth in Bible history to warn men off the ground that he took. He set himself in stubborn resistance against the messages and warnings God sent. Every ray of light that comes from heaven to men, when resisted by the ungodly, increases their power of resistance, and finally sets the heart in rebellion against God. He who sows rebellion reaps rebellion. YI November 30, 1893, par. 4

After God sends light and evidence, calculated to convince any rational, unprejudiced mind, and it is not received or acted upon, but rather treated with contempt, resisted, and refused, the Holy Spirit is withdrawn, and men are left in their chosen obstinacy. The Lord gradually removed from Pharaoh the restraint that his Holy Spirit had exercised over him, and gave him up to his own way. It was more and more evident that the heart of the king was fixed in desperate rebellion against God. In word and character he said, “Who is the Lord, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I know not the Lord, neither will I let Israel go.” YI November 30, 1893, par. 5

Pharaoh had his sowing time, and he also had his reaping time. He sowed resistance and obstinacy. He sowed the seed in the soil. No new power was put into operation by God. The seed was left to spring up; the man was permitted to act out his true character. When the Lord sees unbelief in the heart against light and evidence, all he has to do is to let the human agent alone; for the seed put into the soil will bring forth seed after its kind. Many have been sowing the seed of unbelief, and if this seed is cultivated, it will produce a harvest that will not be so pleasant to reap as the seed is to sow. When Pharaoh refused to heed the messages and admonitions of God, and was not admonished by the first miracle that God worked to convince him, he was in a condition more easily to say, “I will,” and “I will not.” His independent resistance produced a harvest after its kind, and all the evidences that God gave to set his steps in the right path, only served to fasten him in unbelief and rebellion. He went on from one degree of resistance and wilful disobedience of God to another degree, just as the ungodly of all ages have done, and will do to the close of time, until he finally looked upon the dead face of his first-born. The character revealed by Pharaoh is similar to that of all the impenitent. God destroys no man; but after a time the wicked are given up to the destruction they have wrought for themselves. YI November 30, 1893, par. 6

When a man chooses his own way in the face of light and evidence, and refuses to be admonished, and to turn to the Lord with contrition of soul, the next message the Lord shall send will have less effect, for he allows his independent, self-willed spirit to control his judgment. He continues to cast the seed of resistance into his heart, and every time he repeats his act of resistance, refusing to turn from his own way to God's way, he bends his inclination in the way of disobedience, loves rebellion, and at last becomes callous, and the seed of unbelief ripens for the harvest. The Holy Spirit strives with every man; resist the Holy Spirit, which is the divine voice to man, and the more you resist, the less inclination will you have to repent and reform. Satan will take you under his care, and will give you plenty to do in his line, and you will become more and more in harmony with your leader, and the company that stands under his banner. The warning of God may come to you, saying, “Turn ye, turn ye, for why will ye die?” But you will throw back the answer, “I will not serve God. I am not religiously inclined. After I go on in the way of self-pleasing as long as I wish, I will choose another leader. I do not mean always to stand under Satan's standard, and give my influence and service to him. But I will do just as I please until certain objects are gained, and then I will change.” This is the way many reason. YI November 30, 1893, par. 7

The foolish rich man is an example of what fate may come to those who think only of pleasing themselves, and living for this present world. He made up his mind what he would do, but his Maker had other plans. When he said, “Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry,” God said, “This night thy soul shall be required of thee.” Thus shall it be with every one who is not rich toward God. What foolish reasoning comes from the impenitent heart! How foolish is it to educate the affections away from God, in direct opposition to the plainest precepts of Jehovah, to allow Satan to control the mind, to bind the soul in service to himself, and then flatter ourselves that at any time we may be able to step from the ranks of evil into the army of the Lord Jesus Christ! Every hour we walk in the path of unrighteousness, every warning we resist, we place ourselves farther away from the probability of repentance. Warnings, reproofs, entreaties, have less and less effect. The judgment loses its solemnity, the inclination of the heart becomes less and less toward the service of God, and more and more toward the service of self and the world. YI November 30, 1893, par. 8

Then take heed today to the voice of the Holy Spirit. Thank God it is not too late for wrongs to be righted. Now is the accepted time, now is the day of salvation. YI November 30, 1893, par. 9

Mrs. E. G. White