Ms 56, 1894

Ms 56, 1894

Sermon/Judge Not


December 30, 1894

Portions of this manuscript are published in 3BC 1140.

“There were present at that season some that told him of the Galileans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices.” [Luke 13:1.] The disciples thought that these Galileans richly deserved their punishment but they did not venture to express their ideas until they had heard His opinion. The Master had given them decided lessons in reference to their judging other men’s characters and measuring retribution according to their finite judgment. At this time Herod and Pilate were at strife among themselves. The Galileans did not belong to Pilate’s jurisdiction, but because they were Herod’s subjects, he felt like wreaking vengeance upon them. 9LtMs, Ms 56, 1894, par. 1

The Jewish people were offering sacrifices at Jerusalem, and the Galileans were engaged also in offering the blood of animals; and Pilate, coming suddenly upon them, slew the Galileans. The Great Teacher answered the question of the disciples saying, “Suppose ye that these Galileans were sinners above all the Galileans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” [Verses 2, 3.] 9LtMs, Ms 56, 1894, par. 2

There were those who mingled with the disciples who were blessed with opportunities, who received lesson upon lesson, line upon line and precept upon precept, here a little and there a little, and yet they had not become transformed in character. In clear and elevated principles Christ had shown them God’s hate for sin, and with prophetic eye He discerned the future when Pilate was delivering Him up to be scourged and crucified, and He was a Galilean. One of the twelve who were with Him would betray Him into the hands of sinners, and another who was favored by being in His presence, by hearing the words that fell from His lips, would deny Him with cursing and swearing. 9LtMs, Ms 56, 1894, par. 3

Jesus would be delivered up to the agonies of crucifixion by a man who pronounced Him innocent, and the people would choose a robber and murderer before they would choose Christ, the Son of God. They would choose one who had afflicted the community, who was hardened with guilt, whose character was defiled, and turn away from [One] who was innocent, pure, and undefiled. Instructed by priests and rabbis, the people would shriek out the name of Barabbas, hoarsely crying [in answer] to the question, “What then shall I do with Jesus?” “Let him be crucified.” [Matthew 27:22.] The blood of the Son of the Infinite God was to be mingled with the sacrifices of men for He was the perfect sacrifice for the sins of the whole world. 9LtMs, Ms 56, 1894, par. 4

Christ came to our world to die for the sins of the world, to testify to every son and daughter of Adam the immutability of the law of God, and to proclaim the holy indignation of God against sin which is “the transgression of the law.” [1 John 3:4.] The law of God is the standard of perfection of character. After the fall of our first parents, it was written upon stone by the finger of God and given to man. The law of God was broken by the transgression of the inhabitants of the earth, and Christ alone could be a propitiation for our sins. The guiltless suffered for the guilty. The wrath of God against sin fell upon the Substitute who was innocent of any disloyalty. But He suffered at the hands of man imbued by the spirit of demons. The people became agents of the enemy and through them, God allowed the prince of hell to bruise His only beloved Son, and the words were fulfilled, “Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow.” [Zechariah 13:7.] 9LtMs, Ms 56, 1894, par. 5

As Jesus talked with the disciples concerning the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices, His prophetic eye looked forward to the time of Jerusalem’s destruction. He saw the city besieged by armies; He heard the tramp of the aliens marching against Jerusalem, and saw the thousands upon thousands that would perish in the seas. The only hope for Jerusalem was to believe in Jesus Christ. 9LtMs, Ms 56, 1894, par. 6

The disciples had told Jesus of those Galileans, whose blood had mingled with the blood of the beasts they had slain, because they thought that they were more wicked than other men, but the words of Christ, though tenderly spoken, were keen and cutting and were never to be forgotten by them. They had commented freely upon those who had been violently slain and had judged that they were sinners above others, but they were led to see that they had made a mistake, and that those who had charged guilt above other men upon these Galileans were likewise to be visited with calamity. At the overthrow of Jerusalem many of the Jews were slain within the temple courts, in the very act of offering sacrifices—[they] perished in the same way as had the Galileans. 9LtMs, Ms 56, 1894, par. 7

Jesus continued upon this subject, using for an illustration the eighteen upon whom the tower of Siloam fell, saying, “Think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” [Luke 13:4, 5.] It is very natural for human beings to think that great calamities are a sure index of great crimes and enormous sins, but men often make a mistake in thus measuring character. We are not living in the time of retributive judgment. Good and evil are mingled and calamities come upon all. Sometimes men do pass the boundary line beyond God’s protecting care, and then Satan exercises his power upon them, and God does not interpose. 9LtMs, Ms 56, 1894, par. 8

Job was sorely afflicted, and his friends sought to make him acknowledge that his suffering was the result of sin, and [to] cause him to feel under condemnation. They represented his case as that of a great sinner; but the Lord rebuked them for their judgment of His faithful servant. The Saviour of men Himself was misjudged by men. It was declared that He was not fit to live because He had made Himself the Son of God. One would charge Him with one accusation and another with another. Satan stirred up the worst elements of human nature and he was “despised and rejected of men.” [Isaiah 53:3.] But the shame and the suffering endured by the Son of God was for the purpose of canceling the debt of every sinner who would rely upon His merits and virtue. 9LtMs, Ms 56, 1894, par. 9