The Review and Herald

660/1902

March 14, 1893

Entire Consecration Necessary

EGW

The necessity of thorough consecration to God in all those who have a connection with any branch of his work, has been presented before me. Much is lost by fitful service; and yet many serve God at will, and cease from his service as it suits their convenience or pleasure; and this is why many of our workers are in a weak spiritual condition. Satan is wide-awake and vigilant, and is ever persevering and energetic in his efforts to overthrow the soul. He watches diligently that he may weave his ideas and plans into the work of God. It is only through a living connection with the Source of all wisdom and light, that men may become wise unto salvation, and this living connection must be continually maintained; for Satan will overthrow the soul that does not watch unto prayer. We are to overcome, and overcoming means all that the word implies. RH March 14, 1893, par. 1

“He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.... To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.... And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations.... He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.... Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.... To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.” RH March 14, 1893, par. 2

When temptation comes upon us, we need spiritual discernment, that we may detect Satan's agency, and draw close to Jesus. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you. Every moment it is necessary to fight the good fight of faith; for doubt must be resisted, and faith must be encouraged. In temptation, inclination must be overruled by reason. Self will clamor for indulgence, but inclination must be resisted, and temptation overcome. RH March 14, 1893, par. 3

The Lord has given warnings, he has presented principles that it is necessary for every Christian to heed, and bring into his practical life. Those who pass on in indifference to the light and warning which God has been pleased to give, will grow more and more egotistical and self-sufficient. Those who do not place their dependence upon God, will certainly be overthrown by the enemy. Satan is working by every conceivable device to keep in his own ranks those who claim to be on the Lord's side. He can blind their eyes until they will call light darkness, and darkness light. “Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? Let him trust in the name of the Lord, and stay upon his God. Behold, all ye that kindle a fire, that compass yourselves about with sparks: walk in the light of your fire, and in the sparks that ye have kindled. This shall ye have of mine hand; ye shall lie down in sorrow.” RH March 14, 1893, par. 4

Though the light of God is shining in more distinct rays than ever before, and will shine more and more clearly as we near the close of earth's history, those who will be able to discern truth from error, will be men who are often upon their knees, seeking wisdom from God. The bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness can alone reveal the numerous and varied plottings of the enemy. The wicked one is at work with all deceivableness of unrighteousness; and while we are not to keep our eyes upon the powers of darkness, we cannot be ignorant of their devices. But our faith must center in Jesus Christ. Looking unto him, clinging to his strength as sufficient for every emergency, our heart joins his heart, our life is knit by hidden links to his life, and because he lives, we shall live also. This is practical religion; for we are to be kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation. No one of us can be safe save as we join the Lord in a perpetual covenant, that shall not be forgotten by us. RH March 14, 1893, par. 5

Heart union with Christ makes believers heirs of God, and laborers together with him. At home, at church, and in the world, the believer is to show forth the praises of him who has called him out of darkness into his marvelous light. Those whom the Lord intrusts with his work should cultivate home religion. They should not remain away from the assembly of the people of God, and cease to take an active part in religious meetings. They should continually consider what will be the influence of their actions upon those around them. They should cultivate such traits of character as will qualify them to stand as head of their own households. They should be housebands, and as Abraham, able wisely to instruct and educate their children, commanding their children and their household after them, that they may keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment. RH March 14, 1893, par. 6

God chose Abraham as the father of the faithful, because he knew that he would cultivate home religion, and cause the fear of the Lord to be the atmosphere of his dwelling-place. The Lord knew that there would be on the part of Abraham no betraying of sacred trusts; but that he would worship the Lord, and him only would he serve. He knew that his faithful servant would lead his household forward and upward, and influence them to keep the statutes of Jehovah. Abraham did not cherish a blind affection for his family; but by the combined influence of affection and authority, he ruled his home. God's will was made paramount. He feared the Lord with all his house. RH March 14, 1893, par. 7

Those who have neglected this important work in the home, and have failed to command their children and their households after them to keep the way of the Lord, should now seek to redeem the time. Let parents take their Bibles, and search that they may understand what are the requirements of God in regard to their children. Let them seek to understand what is included in parental duty. The word of God must be our rule in conducting our family affairs; and neither the waywardness of children, nor the press of business, should be looked upon as excuses for neglect in following the counsel of God. Let parents set before their children a worthy example in personal piety, honoring the house of God and respecting his service. The want of home religion is felt in every branch of God's work, and the necessity of cultivating personal piety in the home should be continually kept before the people. They should have instruction, line upon line and precept upon precept, that all those whose names are upon the church records may hear and obey the word of the Lord. Parents cannot rightly train their children unless they learn how to co-operate with the Lord in his work upon the heart. The first essential in educating your households in the fear of God, is consecration of yourself and your all to God. Let parents begin with heart work; for out of the heart are the issues of life. Let the prayer ascend from contrite hearts, “Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward part: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom. Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy Holy Spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.” RH March 14, 1893, par. 8

What a prayer is this! How evident it is that sinners in the household are not to be treated with indifference, but that the Lord looks upon them as the purchase of his blood. In every household where the unconverted are, it should be the work of those who know the Lord to work in wisdom for their conversion. The Lord will surely bless the efforts of parents, as in his fear and love they seek to save the souls of their households. The Lord Jesus is waiting to be gracious. O that the work might begin at the heart! “For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it; thou delightest not in burnt- offerings. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.” Then let it be understood by all the members of the household that the work must begin at the heart. The heart must be subdued and made contrite through the creating, regenerating power of the Holy Spirit. Realizing the aid of this mighty agency, cannot parents work for the conversion of their children with more zeal and love than ever before? RH March 14, 1893, par. 9

The promise of the Lord is, “Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.” When the Spirit of the Lord works upon the hearts of the parents, their prayers and tears will come up before God, and they will earnestly entreat, and will receive grace and wisdom from heaven, and will be able to work for their unconverted children. As this spirit is manifested in the home, it will be brought into the church, and those who are home missionaries will also become agents for God in the church and in the world. The institutions which God has planted will bear an entirely different mold. RH March 14, 1893, par. 10

“Thus saith the Lord God; in the day that I shall have cleansed you from all your iniquities I will also cause you to dwell in the cities, and the wastes shall be builded. And the desolate land shall be tilled whereas it lay desolate in the sight of all that passed by. And they shall say, This land that was desolate is become like the garden of Eden; and the waste and desolate and ruined cities are become fenced, and are inhabited. Then the heathen that are left roundabout you shall know that I the Lord build the ruined places, and plant that that was desolate: I the Lord have spoken it, and I will do it. Thus saith the Lord God; I will yet for this be inquired of by the house of Israel, to do it for them; I will increase them with men like a flock. As the holy flock, as the flock of Jerusalem in her solemn feasts; so shall the waste cities be filled with flocks of men: and they shall know that I am the Lord.” RH March 14, 1893, par. 11

If those who profess to know the Lord did indeed have an experimental knowledge of God, how evenly would the work move on! All the building fitly framed together would grow into a holy temple in the Lord. The church would be quickened from the paralysis that is upon her, and the people of God would do earnest work. The world would not have occasion to excuse themselves for their ungodliness on account of the example of those who profess to be followers of Christ, who hold the truth in unrighteousness. Unity would exist in the church. Love would be cherished one for another; but now love has become almost extinct. RH March 14, 1893, par. 12

Shall we not as children of the living God, read the living oracle, purposing in our hearts that at whatever cost we will obey God, crucify self, and live unto Christ? No man is qualified to stand in a responsible position, authorized to direct the work, who is not daily directed of God. The whole confederacy of evil, led by Satan, is seeking diligently to increase the ranks of those who transgress the law of God; and the law of the land sustains them in their apostasy. Underneath every movement for the exaltation of the mystery of iniquity, there is a secret undercurrent of effort for the suppression of God's truth in his holy requirement. Men are seeking again to enslave the souls of men by the decree of the law of the land. Is it not time that those who are under the counsel of God shall stand as representatives of Christ in every position of trust? While all the hosts of sin are earnest, zealous, sanguine in advancing their cause, and are stirred by a power from beneath, shall not those who stand in defense of truth manifest earnestness and zeal and enthusiasm? What if the sincere worker for God should be called a fanatic? This is the name that those who have been truly devoted to God have ever been called upon to bear. But infidels have been heard to say, “If I believed what Christians profess to believe, I would be far more zealous than they are.” Since even infidels see in the man who is stigmatized as an enthusiast the only consistent Christian, shall we take a neutral position? RH March 14, 1893, par. 13

The Lord has spoken. The message of God has been given, declaring that there must be an entirely different spirit from that which now prevails among representative men in our cause. There is altogether too much of self, and too little of Jesus. But there is no safety for any one, no matter what may be his position, his learning, his past experience, unless he is constantly in the fear and love of God. The Lord looks to the humble, and it may be that he will send a message to those who are in high position through a humble instrument, and he would have those who are in positions of trust of so humble a spirit that they will hear and heed the message, and arouse from their lethargy. We should realize how wicked and how foolish it is to contend against Omnipotence. O that all would realize how perilous a thing it is to cherish thoughts or do deeds that are out of harmony with the will of God! O that men would understand and take heed to the message that God mercifully sends to them! The Lord sees a soul wandering in darkness, and in his love and pity he sends to him a message, which, if received, will serve to bring him to the light; but if the message is rejected, the soul goes on in darkness more dense than before. Now is the accepted time, now is the day of salvation. RH March 14, 1893, par. 14

The end of earth's history is right upon us, and O that all might fully come into the light! O that all might be moved by the Spirit from above! The law of God is trampled underfoot, and the whole world is deceived by the power of the man of sin. Shall we not devote ourselves and our all to God, that souls may be won to Christ? Only a remnant of probationary time is left us, and at this late day, shall our love for God and his truth grow cold? Shall our light flicker and die out in darkness, because we have not the oil of grace in our vessels with our lamps? RH March 14, 1893, par. 15

The Lord is dishonored by his people when they claim to have light, and yet walk in darkness. They are as men and women looking through smoky glass, and yet they feel competent to judge of the message and the messenger, and do not realize that their vision is perverted. Yet for those who walk in darkness what sympathy should we feel, how tenderly should we labor for them, exercising toward them the pity and love which Christ exercised toward fallen men when he came to earth to suffer and die. RH March 14, 1893, par. 16

My brethren who occupy responsible positions, your place in the work calls upon you to be representative men. You need the baptism of the Holy Spirit. I beseech of you, do not look upon yourselves as safe unless you are in the channel of light. There is a great work to be done in your behalf. You must form new habits, and your natural customs and habits must be subdued by the Spirit of God. Inclination must be denied. Old enemies that war against the Spirit, that you looked upon as dead, under favorable circumstances revive again, and they must be met and vanquished. Self must die. We are to engage earnestly in a spiritual warfare which we do not consider as we should, and we fail to appreciate what it means. The confederacy of evil is arrayed against those who would fight the battles of the Lord. RH March 14, 1893, par. 17

But we battle not alone. The fellowship of the saints in light is ours, the championship of the hosts of heaven is ours, and more than angels are on our side; for leading the ranks of his armies is the Captain of the Lord's hosts. He is Commander of the battle, and as he leads his army to the fields of action, his voice is heard above the din of the battle and the strife, “Be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” Our leader is a conqueror. Advance, then, to victory. The armies of heaven are engaged in the contest, and we fight as in the sight of invisible worlds. We may calmly face the foe, and by faith press on to the conflict. We shall press the battle to the gate, saying, “Our life is hid with Christ in God, because he lives we shall live also.” RH March 14, 1893, par. 18

Let every man constrained by the love of Christ, stand in his appointed place, and steadily, cheerfully, bravely bear the burden assigned him by the Lord. Let every burden-bearer contemplate this fact,—God is love. “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” O, what a God have we! what a Benefactor! What claim has he upon our love! Having collected all the riches of the universe, and laid open all the resources of infinite power, he gave all the heavenly treasure into the hands of Christ, and said, “All these are for man. Use them to convince him that there is no love greater than mine in earth or heaven. His greatest happiness consists in loving me, and giving his heart to me who hath loved him with an infinite love.” RH March 14, 1893, par. 19