The Review and Herald


May 7, 1901

The Great Standard of Righteousness


Christ gave His life to redeem humanity, and He calls upon men and women to make every sacrifice in their power to glorify God by placing light in contrast with darkness. Christ gave His life as a sacrifice, not to destroy God's law, not to create a lower standard, but to maintain justice, and to give man a second probation. No one can keep God's commandments except in Christ's power. He bore in His body the sins of all mankind, and He imputes His righteousness to every believing child. RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 1

Christ is our example in all things. He has magnified the law and made it honorable. By His unwavering obedience He testified to the truth that God's law is the standard of righteousness for all men. God requires of man nothing that is impossible for him to do. He “so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Possessing our nature, though unstained by sin, and tempted in all points like as we are, Christ kept the law, proving beyond controversy that man also can keep it. RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 2

The fiat has gone forth, “The wages of sin is death.” The sinner must feel his guiltiness, else he will never repent. He has broken the law, and in so doing has placed himself under its condemnation. The law has no power to pardon the transgressor, but it points him to Christ Jesus, who says to him, I will take your sin and bear it myself, if you will accept me as your substitute and surety. Return to your allegiance, and I will impute to you my righteousness. You will be made complete in me. RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 3

Sin is the transgression of the law. God declares, “Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.” Notwithstanding all the profession of lip and voice, if the character is not in harmony with the law of God, those making profession of godliness bear evil fruit. RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 4

“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven,”—the will made known in the ten commandments, given in Eden when the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy, and spoken with an audible voice from Sinai. “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” Many mighty works are done under the inspiration of Satan, and these works will be more and more apparent in the last days. RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 5

“Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock; and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.” RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 6

The mischief done by the professed believers in God who are not doers of the Word, can not be estimated. Their lawless, unholy principles corrupt many, leading them away from the path of obedience. RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 7

A life of conformity to the Christ-life can not be a life of disobedience to God's commands. The lawyer who questioned Christ concerning the law, in answering his own question, said, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbor as thyself.” “Thou hast answered right,” Christ said; “this do, and thou shalt live.” Sin can not reign in the life of the one who loves God supremely. Obedience to God is the fruit borne by love. Christ is not at war with Christ, and love to our neighbor prevents us from working ill to him. “The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.” The law of God lays its claim upon the whole man. There is no period of time when the law does not make this demand upon every son and daughter of Adam. RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 8

Complete obedience is the only condition that meets the requirement of the law. “God is not a man, that He should lie.” God's law is the rule of His government. He says, “This do, and thou shalt live.” But to the disobedient He says, “Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things written in the book of the law to do them.” “The soul that sinneth, it shall die.” God has given the promise that those who obey His law will be rewarded, not only in the present life, but in the life to come. He declares just as decidedly that those who do not obey His requirements shall not see life, but the wrath of God abideth on them. By lips that never lie the obedient are blessed, and the disobedient are pronounced guilty. RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 9

There are only two classes in the world today, and only two classes will be recognized in the Judgment,—those who violate God's law, and those who keep His law. Two great opposing powers are revealed in the last great battle. On one side stands the Creator of heaven and earth. All on His side bear His signet. They are obedient to His commands. On the other side stands the Prince of darkness, with those who have chosen apostasy and rebellion. RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 10

When the judgment shall sit, and every one shall be judged by the things written in the books, the authority of God's law will be looked upon in a light altogether different from that in which it is now regarded by the Christian world. Satan has blinded their eyes and confused their understanding, as he blinded and confused Adam and Eve, and led them into transgression. The law of Jehovah is great, even as its Author is great. In the Judgment it will be recognized as holy, just, and good in all its requirements. Those who transgress this law will find that they have a serious account to settle with God; for His claims are decisive. RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 11

Christ has borne our sins in His own body, and those who accept Him as a personal Saviour are free from the penalty of the law. Jesus has been made the propitiation for our sin, and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. “Hereby we do know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He that saith, I know Him, and keepeth not His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth His word, in him verily is the love of God perfected. Hereby know we that we are in Him. He that saith he abideth in Him, ought himself also so to walk, even as He walked.” RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 12

To the obedient child of God the commandments are a delight. David declares, “Thy testimonies have I taken as an heritage forever: for they are the rejoicing of my heart. I have inclined my heart to perform thy statutes alway, even unto the end. I hate vain thoughts: but thy law do I love. Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word. Depart from me, ye evil-doers: for I will keep the commandments of my God.... I am thy servant; give me understanding, that I may know thy testimonies.” RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 13

Did the contempt shown to the law of God extinguish David's loyalty? Hear his words. He calls upon God to interfere and vindicate His honor, to show that there is a God, that there are limits to His forbearance. “It is time for thee, Lord, to work,” he says, “for they have made void thy law.” RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 14

David saw the divine precepts thrown aside, and obstinacy and rebellion increasing. But he was not swept away by the prevalence of apostasy. The scorn and contempt cast upon the law did not lead him to refrain from vindicating the law. On the contrary, his reverence for the law of Jehovah increased as he saw the disregard and contempt shown for it by others. “They have made void thy law,” he exclaims. “Therefore I love thy commandments above gold; yea, above fine gold. Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way.” RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 15

As man studies and contemplates the precious statutes of the Most High, as he meditates upon them, and realizes their value, he exclaims: “Thy testimonies are wonderful: therefore doth my soul keep them. The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.... Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.” RH May 7, 1901, Art. A, par. 16