The Review and Herald

593/1902

September 1, 1891

Meeting Trials

(Concluded.)

EGW

The Lord himself has pledged his word, “If ye shall ask anything in my name, I will do it. If ye love me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever; even the Spirit of truth [now mark the following words]; whom the world cannot receive; because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also. At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you. He that hath my commandments [he that hath light in regard to the binding claims of the law of God], and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.” RH September 1, 1891, par. 1

“If any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.” How careful is the Lord Jesus to give no occasion for a soul to despair. How he fences about the soul from Satan's fierce attacks. If through manifold temptations we are surprised or deceived into sin, he does not turn from us, and leave us to perish. No, no, that is not like our Saviour. Christ prays for us. He was tempted in all points like as we are; and having been tempted, he knows how to succor those who are tempted. Our crucified Lord is pleading for us in the presence of his Father at the throne of grace. His atoning sacrifice we may plead for our pardon, our justification, and our sanctification. The Lamb slain is our only hope. Our faith looks upon him, grasps him as the one who can save to the uttermost, and the fragrance of the all-sufficient offering is accepted of the Father. Unto Christ is committed all power in heaven and in earth, and all things are possible to him that believeth. Christ's glory is concerned in our success. He has a common interest with all humanity. He is our sympathizing Saviour. RH September 1, 1891, par. 2

“If, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son; much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.” What greater assurance can we have of the willingness, yea, the longing, of Christ to have all come unto him and believe in him that they may have eternal life! O, when we see the sorrows and suffering of loved ones, shall we turn away from Christ dissatisfied, murmuring, and complaining?—No; that is the time to come close to the only One who can be our helper in every time of need. You have no time for repining, no time for unbelief, no time to let go of Jesus. When trial comes, press closer to his bleeding side. When the whole world was under condemnation, Christ took upon himself the guilt of the sinner; he bore the wrath of God for the transgressor, and thus suffering the penalty of sin, he ransoms the sinner. Had it been the choice of God to destroy the disobedient, he might in justice have swept the earth clean of the guilty transgressors; but he reveals himself as a compassionate loving Father. “As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live.” “Wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye.” RH September 1, 1891, par. 3

The Son of God bore the contradiction of sinners against himself. Behold his agony in the garden of Gethsemane. Hear his thrice-repeated prayer, “If it be possible, let this cup pass from me.” Sweating great drops of blood in his human agony, he added, “Nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt.” Has God, then, no knowledge of his suffering creatures? Behold the Saviour betrayed, mocked, derided in the judgment hall. Who was this?—The Prince of Life, the holy and beloved of God. Faint and weary after his long, agonizing struggle in the garden of Gethsemane, he was dragged from one tribunal to another, testified against by false witnesses, given up to the malice of the Jews by Pilate, who pronounced him blameless, scourged with cruel whips, spit upon, mocked at, fainting under the burden of the cross, and then lifted upon the cross, reproached in his dying agonies, the rude soldiers quarreling over his few garments, the reward for their part in the shameful work, priests and rulers in triumph wagging their heads and taunting him, “He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him. He trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him.” RH September 1, 1891, par. 4

How could heaven keep silent? Can we wonder at the horrible unnatural darkness that hung over the cross? Can we wonder at the rending rocks, the rolling thunder, the flashing lightning, the shaking of the earth beneath the tread of the heavenly army as they beheld their loved Commander suffering such indignity? The crown of thorns he wore, the curse of the cross he suffered,—who could have imagined that he, the Son of the infinite God, the Majesty of heaven, the King of glory, would bow his righteous soul to such a sacrifice! For sinners, for sinners, he died. Wonder, O heavens, and be astonished, O earth! The Son of God has died on the shameful cross, that the world might not perish; he died to bring life, everlasting life, to all who shall believe. RH September 1, 1891, par. 5

Can we look to the cross of Calvary, and then question the love of Jesus? The stone is rolled away from the sepulcher; Christ has risen. Rejoice, O rejoice, that there is hope for you. Pray to the Lord Jesus that a holy influence may be brought into your life, an influence which shall subdue every passion, hush every murmuring thought, exalt your affections, and purify your heart. “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation; for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life,” or the crown of righteousness. Look up, look up, come out of the cave of unbelief, and stand with God. If you dwell upon your trials, you will have a hopeless life. If you look beyond the shadow to Jesus, your only hope, you will see the bright beams of the Sun of righteousness. RH September 1, 1891, par. 6

Learn the lessons of meekness and lowliness in the school of Christ. Realize how much he bore for us, and then count it not a mark of God's anger that you have some trials to bear for Jesus. If you trust God, the trials will always prove a blessing, and your faith will come forth the brighter, the stronger, the purer. Satan is always trying to press the soul into distrust of God, and therefore we must educate the mind to trust him. Talk faith and hope when Satan says, as did the wife of Job, “Curse God, and die.” If you trust God, you will see more reason to trust him. As you talk of his goodness, you will see more of his love to talk about. Thus the mind may be trained to live in the brightness of the Sun of righteousness, and not in the shadow which Satan casts athwart our path. Hope in God, who is the health of our countenance, and our God. RH September 1, 1891, par. 7