Manuscript Releases, vol. 10 [Nos. 771-850]
MR No. 813—Comfort and Assurance for the Afflicted
My Dear Sister Lizzie Innes,
I hear that you are being much afflicted, and I am in deep sympathy with you. Since my acquaintance with you I have felt a tender, loving sympathy toward you. My dear sister, while you are suffering, while infirmities are pressing upon your soul, do not doubt the love of your heavenly Father. Satan will try to cloud your mind with the thought that Jesus does not love you. He will try to make you believe that you are unworthy of being acknowledged before the Father as His child, but do not believe his suggestions for a single moment. I know that the Lord loves you and that there will be souls in the kingdom of God that will be saved as the result of your unselfish labor, your steadfast adherence to the faith. 10MR 174.1
When Satan comes in with his suggestions, look unto Jesus and say, “Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ who died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us” (Romans 8:34). Only think of this, my sister. Christ is the one who has died for you, who has purchased you with His own precious blood. Will He permit those whom He values so highly to walk alone? Nay, He will not. The apostle continues, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation?” (Romans 8:35). Nay. Jesus bore all this in my behalf when He accepted humanity, and He bore it in order that I might not perish, but have everlasting life. Will He who has done all this for you be indifferent to you when it is difficult for you to engage in the warfare and to fight the good fight of faith? You are weak, and the trembling hand of faith can scarcely grasp the promises, but cannot you now say, “Lord, I am now too weak to use the weapons of warfare, but I can repose in Thee as my only hope. In Thee, and in Thee alone, my Redeemer, is my only hope of eternal life. Thou art my refuge.” 10MR 174.2
The message from God to me for you is “Him that cometh unto me, I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37). If you have nothing else to plead before God but this one promise from your Lord and Saviour, you have the assurance that you will never, never be turned away. It may seem to you that you are hanging upon a single promise, but appropriate that one promise, and it will open to you the whole treasure house of the riches of the grace of Christ. Cling to that promise and you are safe. “Him that cometh unto me I will in no wise cast out.” Present this assurance to Jesus, and you are as safe as though inside the city of God. 10MR 175.1
You are not to examine your feelings and put any dependence upon your emotions, for they may be as varied as the wind, but take to your heart this one promise and you will find it a passport to all the rich treasures of heaven. You are precious to the heart of Christ and He speaks, saying unto you, “Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). There is no perhaps or maybe about this promise. The “I will” of Christ is an assurance that cannot be made any stronger. He speaks further, saying, “Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly of heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light” (Matthew 11:29, 30). 10MR 175.2
Now, my sister, Jesus wants you to believe in Him as your personal Saviour, as One who can save unto the uttermost all who come unto God by Him. Your request made known unto God in the name of Jesus is ever acceptable to your heavenly Father. You have a right to appropriate the promises which you present to God in the name of Jesus, for the Father has committed to His Son the bounties of His grace to be dispensed to those who come unto Him asking in faith. The Lord Jesus is the One who gives to him that overcometh to eat of the tree of life which is in the midst of the Paradise of God. He who took humanity upon Himself knows just how to sympathize with the sufferings of humanity. He had the same nature as the sinner although He knew no sin, in order that He might be able to condemn sin in the flesh and might be able to sympathize with those who were in the difficulties, dangers, and temptations that beset His own path while He walked with men. They are to obtain help as He Himself obtained it, through a vital connection with God. 10MR 176.1
Look to Jesus, your substitute and surety and righteousness. He became sin for us who knew no sin, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. He gives the crown of life to those who are faithful unto death. He it is who gives to eat of the hidden manna. My dear sister, Jesus will not leave you. He loves you with an everlasting love, and as you trust in Him your faith will grow and increase. The more you trust your Redeemer the more you will love Him. He is your friend in life or in death. He is the crown of your rejoicing. He is worthy of your fullest faith. All the sorrows and afflictions we suffer here only constitutes our discipline for a higher life, for through the appropriated grace of Christ trials will be the means whereby we shall be purified and fitted for heaven. Wait only upon God. Lean upon Him in entire dependence, for His everlasting arms hold you up and sustain you. Will not He who says that not a sparrow falls to the ground without the notice of your heavenly Father care for you who trust and love Him? Jesus knows every throb of pain, every throe of anguish and distress, and He will give you grace to endure your affliction in order that your faith fail not, whatever may be your suffering. 10MR 176.2
Dear Sister Innes, keep up good courage. Let not your heart be oppressed. You have been called upon to travel a thorny path, but Jesus is at your side to journey the rough road with you. He knows, He understands every woe, every sorrow of those who suffer. His heart beats in sympathy with the hearts of suffering humanity, and those who suffer most have most of His pity and sympathy. He is your best Friend. He is your Mediator. The completeness of His humanity, the perfection of His divinity, form for us a strong ground upon which we may be brought into reconciliation with God. It was when we were yet sinners that Christ died for us. We have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins. His nail-pierced hands are outreached toward heaven and earth. With one hand He lays hold of sinners upon earth, and with the other He grasps the throne of the Infinite, and thus He makes reconciliation for us. Christ is today standing as our Advocate before the Father. He is the one Mediator between God and man. Bearing the marks of His crucifixion, He pleads the causes of our souls. 10MR 177.1
I would point this afflicted family to Jesus. John saw the company of the redeemed, and they were those who had come up through great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. [Revelation 7:9-17, quoted.] 10MR 177.2
I would urge upon you, as a family, during the time when affliction is upon this beloved sister, that you all draw closer and closer in faith and confidence to Jesus. Talk cheerfully. Let not one jarring note be heard. Let no touch of sadness or gloom reveal itself on your countenances. Keep Jesus uplifted. Talk faith in Jesus and sing songs of faith. Offer up your supplications in faith. I point you to One who “suffered being tempted.” “Wherefore in all things it behoved Him to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that He Himself hath suffered being tempted, He is able to succour them that are tempted” (Hebrews 2:17, 18). Let us praise God for this with heart and soul and voice. 10MR 178.1
Be of good courage in order that you may sustain and strengthen poor suffering Lizzie. I would say to the mother of Lizzie, who is a partaker of her sufferings, Remember that Jesus is able to sustain you both, and to sustain all who are in any way participating in the care of the afflicted one. Let us read a few words in Hebrews 2:10: “For it became Him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For both He that sanctifieth and they that are sanctified are all of one: for which cause He is not ashamed to call them brethren.” 10MR 178.2
God bless you is and shall be our prayer. 10MR 178.3
In love to all the family.
(Signed) Ellen G. White—Letter 35, 1894.
Washington, D. C.,
August 11, 1980.