The Review and Herald

814/1902

February 25, 1896

Higher Education

EGW

The term “higher education” is to be considered in a different light from what it has been viewed by the students of the sciences. The prayer of Christ to his Father is full of eternal truth. “These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son may also glorify thee; as thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.” “For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God; for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life; and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” The power and soul of true education is a knowledge of God, and of Jesus Christ whom he hath sent. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” RH February 25, 1896, par. 1

Of Jesus it is written: “And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon him.... And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.” A knowledge of God will constitute a kind of knowledge that will be as enduring as eternity. To learn and do the works of Christ, is to obtain a true education. Although the Holy Spirit worked the mind of Christ, so that he could say to his parents, “How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?” yet he worked at the carpenter's trade as an obedient son. He revealed that he had a knowledge of his work as the Son of God, and yet he did not exalt his divine character. He did not offer as a reason why he should not bear the burden of temporal care, that he was of divine origin; but he was subject to his parents. He was the Lord of the commandments, yet he was obedient to all their requirements, thus leaving an example of obedience to childhood, youth, and manhood. RH February 25, 1896, par. 2

If the mind is set to the task of studying the Bible for information, the reasoning faculties will be improved. Under study of the Scriptures the mind expands, and becomes more evenly balanced than if occupied in obtaining general information from the books that are used which have no connection with the Bible. No knowledge is so firm, so consistent and far-reaching, as that obtained from a study of the word of God. It is the foundation of all true knowledge. The Bible is like a fountain. The more you look into it, the deeper the fountain appears. The grand truths of sacred history possess amazing strength and beauty, and are as far-reaching as eternity. No science is equal to the science that reveals the character of God. Moses was educated in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, yet he said: “Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments, even as the Lord my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the land whither ye go to possess it. Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people. For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the Lord our God is in all things that we call upon him for? And what nation is there so great, that hath statutes and judgments so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day? Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life; but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons.” RH February 25, 1896, par. 3

Where shall we find laws more noble, pure, and just, than are exhibited on the statute-books wherein is recorded instruction given to Moses for the children of Israel? Through all time these laws are to be perpetuated, that the character of God's people may be formed after the divine similitude. The law is a wall of protection to those who are obedient to God's precepts. From what other source can we gather such strength, or learn such noble science? What other book will teach men to love, fear, and obey God as does the Bible? What other book presents to students more ennobling science, more wonderful history? It clearly portrays righteousness, and foretells the consequence of disloyalty to the law of Jehovah. No one is left in darkness as to that which God approves or disapproves. In studying the Scriptures we become acquainted with God, and are led to understand our relation to Christ, who is the sin-bearer, the surety, the substitute, for our fallen race. These truths concern our present and eternal interests. The Bible stands the highest among books, and its study is valuable above the study of other literature in giving strength and expansion to the mind. Paul says: “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” “But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; and that from a child thou hast known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.” RH February 25, 1896, par. 4

The word of God is the most perfect educational book in our world. Yet in our colleges and schools, books produced by human intellect have been presented for the study of our students, and the Book of books, which God has given to men to be an infallible guide, has been made a secondary matter. Human productions have been used as most essential, and the word of God has been studied simply to give flavor to other studies. Isaiah describes the scenes of heaven's glory that were presented to him, in most vivid language. All through this book he pictures glorious things that are to be revealed to others. Ezekiel writes: “The word of the Lord came expressly unto Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and the hand of the Lord was there upon him. And I looked, and, behold, a whirlwind came out of the north, a great cloud, and a fire infolding itself, and a brightness was about it, and out of the midst thereof as the color of amber, out of the midst of the fire. Also out of the midst thereof came the likeness of four living creatures. And this was their appearance; they had the likeness of a man. And every one had four faces, and every one had four wings. And their feet were straight feet; and the sole of their feet was like the sole of a calf's foot; and they sparkled like the color of burnished brass. And they had the hands of a man under their wings on their four sides, and they four had their faces and their wings. Their wings were joined one to another; they turned not when they went; they went every one straight forward. As for the likeness of their faces, they four had the face of a man, and the face of a lion, on the right side; and they four had the face of an ox on the left side; they four also had the face of an eagle.” The book of Ezekiel is deeply instructive. RH February 25, 1896, par. 5

The Bible is designed of God to be the book by which the understanding may be disciplined, the soul guided and directed. To live in the world and yet to be not of the world, is a problem that many professed Christians have never worked out in their practical life. Enlargement of mind will come to a nation only as men return to their allegiance to God. The world is flooded with books on general information, and men apply their minds in searching uninspired histories; but they neglect the most wonderful book that can give them the most correct ideas and ample understanding. RH February 25, 1896, par. 6

How hard men work to obtain knowledge! They expend time and money in seeking to find out things that are not essential to a life of purity, that will not aid them in building up a character that will fit them to become members of the royal family, children of the Heavenly King. Some make long journeys to Jerusalem to see the place where Christ lived and taught. They listen to traditions and tales that men have invented. They spend money for that which is not bread. Christ says: “Labor not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you; for him hath God the Father sealed.” To expend time and labor in finding the places where Jesus worked in Jerusalem, cannot bring any real benefit to soul or body. The money would better be expended in helping those who are perishing out of Christ. In doing this work, we may be assured that we are working in Christ's lines. Human guides may point to this spot or that one as a place where Jesus made his abode, and travelers may cultivate feelings of awe and reverence in looking upon various localities, and yet they have no certain knowledge that Christ ever taught there, or that his feet ever trod the soil. The only advantage that we can gain is an advantage that comes by faith in knowing and understanding the work of Christ for our soul's salvation, in knowing the will of God in our individual cases. RH February 25, 1896, par. 7

Men and women may study the will of God with profit. Let young men and young women, while the dew of youth is upon them, begin to study the word of God, which expresses his will. The steps of Christ are certainly marked out in the word. Go where they can be found today. Do not seek to go back to the land where Christ's feet trod ages ago. Christ says: “He that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” We can know far more of Christ by following him step by step in the work of redemption, seeking the lost and the perishing, than by journeying to old Jerusalem. Christ has taken his people into his church. He has swept away every ceremony of the ancient type. He has given no liberty to restore these rites, or to substitute anything that will recall the old literal sacrifices. The Lord requires of his people spiritual sacrifices alone. Everything pertaining to his worship is placed under the superintendence of his Holy Spirit. Jesus said that the Father would send the Holy Spirit in his name to teach his disciples all things, and to bring all things unto their remembrance that he had said unto them. The curse rests upon Jerusalem. The Lord has obliterated those things which men would worship in and about Jerusalem, yet many hold in reverence literal objects in Palestine, while they neglect to behold Jesus as their advocate in the heaven of heavens. RH February 25, 1896, par. 8

Where is Christ? We would see Jesus, not the places where he used to make his abode. Christ is the bread of life, and we must feed upon his word, and be a doer of his commands. What is Christ to me? How am I related to Christ? He is in the heavens above, and as our high priest, is offering up the incense of his own merit. His holiness mingles with our prayers of repentance and faith. Through conversion we are brought into close relationship with God, and the Father loves those for whom Christ has died as he loves his own Son. Through the almighty ransom he has made, we become sons and daughters of God. We should earnestly inquire, not in regard to old Jerusalem and concerning the fables that are repeated for truth, but we should turn our eyes to the loving Saviour, who ever liveth to make intercession for us. We should prostrate the soul before the incarnate God. We are not to trust in fables, and worship places that God has cursed, and foster idolatry in so doing. Jesus said to the Samaritan woman: “Ye worship ye know not what; we know what we worship; for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit; and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.” Many visit Jerusalem, and go away cherishing ideas which they suppose represent the truth, while in fact they have only come in contact with fables. They publish these falsehoods as truth. RH February 25, 1896, par. 9

Peter declares: “We have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eye-witnesses of his majesty. For he received from God the Father honor and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount. We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day-star arise in your hearts; knowing this first, that no prophecy of the Scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man; but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” RH February 25, 1896, par. 10

Let the mind be educated to look to Jesus. Let an effort be made to become doers of his word. The curse of God is upon Jerusalem and its surroundings, and the land is defiled under the inhabitants thereof. There is no real foundation for feelings of awe in looking upon the land of Palestine. In revering these earthly things, men clothe them with a false glory. He who came to save the world could not be endured by those he came to rescue, and they killed the Lord of life and glory, thinking to extinguish his divine light from the world. But it was impossible for the grave to hold him. He burst the fetters of the tomb, and proclaimed in triumph over the rent sepulcher, “I am the resurrection and the life.” Thus Christ became a present Saviour, a divine presence, in every place. All who believe may obtain clear views of Christ's true glory. When they behold him, all these minor things sink into insignificance, just as the lesser lights vanish when the sun appears. He who catches a glimpse of the matchless love of Christ, counts all other things as loss, and looks upon him as the chiefest among ten thousand, and as the one altogether lovely. As seraphim and cherubim look upon Christ, they cover their faces with their wings. Their own perfection and beauty are not displayed in the presence and glory of their Lord. Then how improper it is for men to exalt themselves! Let them rather be clothed with humility, cease all strife for supremacy, and learn what it means to be meek and lowly of heart. He who contemplates God's glory and infinite love, will have humble views of himself; but by beholding the character of God, he will be changed into his divine image. RH February 25, 1896, par. 11