The Review and Herald


February 26, 1901

The Influence of the Truth


Truth is elevating and uplifting. Those who receive the truth in earnestness and sincerity bear fruit, which shows that the entire life is changed. But many who claim to believe the truth are no honor to the truth because they are not sanctified by it. They do not receive the truth into the soul, therefore it can not sanctify the life. RH February 26, 1901, par. 1

By the help of the Holy Spirit, men and women can rise from commonness, and live pure, holy lives. Those professed believers who do not do this, lie against the truth. They say, “I believe the Third Angel's Message. I believe that the Lord is coming.” But they enter into controversy with others, revealing coarse, rough traits of character. They do not show forth in word and deportment the transforming power that attends the truth. How can the Lord be pleased with those who make no effort to rise to a high standard? Do they not claim to have received a high, noble truth? Yet in their home life and in their business associations they show no change for the better. Is not this lying against the truth? RH February 26, 1901, par. 2

“Ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” The apostle carries the minds of the people back to their former unrenewed condition. “Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God; which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy. Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul.” RH February 26, 1901, par. 3

God does not ask men and women to surrender anything that is for the health of soul or body, but He does ask them to surrender debasing, enfeebling vices, vices which, if cherished, will exclude them from heaven. He leaves them room for every pleasure that can be enjoyed without compunction of conscience, and remembered without remorse. He asks them, for their present and eternal good, to cultivate those virtues that bring health to the body and strength to the soul. Pure thoughts and correct habits are necessary to a man's happiness, as a man and as a Christian. Everything of a debasing character must be overcome if we would see the King in His beauty. RH February 26, 1901, par. 4

Christ says to us, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” The Lord can and will help every one who seeks His help in the effort to become pure and holy. God has given us His word as a guide and counselor, and we are without excuse if we fail to reach the standard set before us. Remember that you have in your possession the living oracles of God. In this precious book the truth is laid open before us in all its simplicity. But how many there are who fail to read this word earnestly and diligently, as if seeking for the hidden treasure. RH February 26, 1901, par. 5

Have earnest efforts been made to overcome natural inclinations to wrong, to conquer the habits and practices that were a part of the life before the acceptance of the truth? Are those who claim to believe the truth as untidy and disorderly in the home and as unchristlike in the daily life as before they professed to accept Christ? If so, they are not showing forth the praises of Him who hath called them out of darkness. They have not put on Christ's righteousness. RH February 26, 1901, par. 6

Strive to make decided improvement. Cleanse yourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and of the spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of the Lord. Be neat and tidy in your dress, and kind and courteous in your manner. Be pure and refined; for heaven is the very essence of purity and refinement. As God is pure and holy in His sphere, so we are to be in our sphere. RH February 26, 1901, par. 7

Read carefully and critically the parable of the wedding garment, and make a personal application of the lessons it teaches. There are those who, having heard the truth, assent to it, yet are not transformed by it. The truth has not been received into the soul, and therefore it can not carry forward its work of purification in the life. Their family, their neighbors, do not see in them the marked change which they have a right to expect. Those who make a profession of faith, and yet remain unchanged in habit and practice, are represented in the parable by the man who came to the feast without a wedding garment. There are many who, while they believe what they read about Christ, do not believe in Christ. They do not receive Him as a personal Saviour. Their names may be registered on the Church roll, but they do not bring Christ into the daily life; and God can not accept them. RH February 26, 1901, par. 8

God is dishonored when those who claim to believe His precious, elevating truth refuse to put on the royal robe of Christ's righteousness. These offer insult to the Saviour. Wherever they go, they show that they have refused to accept the garment provided for them. RH February 26, 1901, par. 9

There are many, many, professed Christians who are waiting unconcernedly for the coming of the Lord. They have not on the garment of His righteousness. They may profess to be children of God, but they are not cleansed from sin. They are selfish and self-sufficient. Their experience is Christless. They neither love God supremely nor their neighbor as themselves. They have no true idea of what constitutes holiness. They do not see the defects in themselves. So blinded are they, that they are not able to detect the subtle working of pride and iniquity. They are clad in the rags of self-righteousness, and stricken with spiritual blindness. Satan has cast his shadow between them and Christ, and they have no wish to study the pure, holy character of the Saviour. RH February 26, 1901, par. 10

Those who do not become saints here can never be saints in heaven. God will accept in His service nothing less than the entire being,—body, soul, and spirit. At the coming of Christ many who now pass for Christians will be found wanting. They would not put on the righteousness of Christ. As they stand face to face with the Judge of all the earth, they will see their true condition. In the light of the law of God, they will see the destitution of their souls. RH February 26, 1901, par. 11

It is impossible for one to be a Christian and yet remain a spiritual dwarf. Those who are truly united to Christ will grow daily, they will attain to the full stature of men and women in Him. They will not, while claiming to be doers of the word of God, disobey its plain requirements. Why is there so little growth in Christian experience, so little manifestation of Christ in the life? Why is the religious life so dwarfed?—It is because there is so much of self and so little of Christ. RH February 26, 1901, par. 12

The law condemns all sin, and requires all virtue. It demands of man an outward respect, and it requires purity of soul. “Behold,” writes the psalmist, “thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom.” The law was exemplified in the life of Christ. He is a pattern for all humanity. He lived the law. His purity and beneficence, His devotion to the truth, and His zeal for God's glory reveal the perfection of the law. His every act was a revelation of the glory of the Father. He was all that the law required Him to be. RH February 26, 1901, par. 13

What the law demanded of Adam and Eve in Eden, and what it demanded of Christ, the second Adam, it demands of every human being. I call upon those who profess to believe the truth to reach a higher standard. I present before you Jesus, the Majesty of heaven, who left the royal courts, and for our sake became poor, that through His poverty we might be made rich. Look at the scenes in His life of suffering. Think of His agony in Gethsemane, when, oppressed by the powers of darkness, He prayed, “Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me.” See Him betrayed by Judas, forsaken by His disciples, condemned by priests and rulers, and delivered by Pilate to a shameful death. All this He endured that man might be elevated and ennobled, and by partaking of the divine nature, be exalted to the right hand of God. RH February 26, 1901, par. 14

Shall Christ have died for us in vain? Shall we claim to be children of light, and yet walk and work in darkness and sin? Shall we not rather show that the converting power of God is molding and fashioning us? Shall we not obey the injunction, “As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance; but as He which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation,” “having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evil-doers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation”? RH February 26, 1901, par. 15