The Review and Herald

1176/1902

February 11, 1902

Purpose of Man's Creation

EGW

All heaven took a deep and joyful interest in the creation of the world and of man. Human beings were a new and distinct order. They were made “in the image of God,” and it was the Creator's design that they should populate the earth. They were to live in close communion with heaven, receiving power from the Source of all power. Upheld by God, they were to live sinless lives. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 1

Satan determined to defeat God's plan. He began by bringing jealousy into the heavenly courts. To many of the angels he communicated his disaffection, and there was war in heaven, which ended in the expulsion of Satan and his sympathizers. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 2

Thrust out of heaven, Satan determined to set up his kingdom on the earth. Through him sin entered the world, and death by sin. By listening to his misrepresentations, Adam fell, and the flood gates of woe were opened on the world. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 3

There was no excuse for Adam's transgression. All his wants were generously supplied. Only one prohibition was laid upon him. God said, “Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 4

This prohibition Satan used as a means of insinuating his suggestions. “God doth know,” he said to the woman, “that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 5

“And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.” RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 6

And God said to Adam, “Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it; cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; in the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.” RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 7

“And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever: therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. So He drove out the man; and He placed at the east of the garden of Eden cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.” RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 8

This lesson is for all mankind. By it God teaches that His word is to be sacredly respected, and His commands implicitly obeyed. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 9

Through the ages that followed the expulsion of Adam from Eden, Satan strove to instill his evil principles into the minds of men, till, when Christ came to the earth, He found His chosen people filled with the selfsame jealousy that led Satan to stir up rebellion in heaven. The Jewish leaders would not receive Christ, because His coming and His work were not in harmony with their belief. And they were jealous of Him; for they saw that His influence over the people was greater than theirs. Spiritually blind, they made no effort to receive enlightenment, choosing rather to remain in darkness. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 10

Christ's miracle of restoring the sight of the man who had been born blind was a convincing evidence of the divinity of His mission. When the people saw the transformation in the man, they said to him, “How were thine eyes opened?” He answered, “A man that is called Jesus made clay, and anointed mine eyes, and said unto me, Go to the pool of Siloam, and wash: and I went and washed, and I received sight. Then said they unto him, Where is he? He said, I know not.” RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 11

Then they brought him to the Pharisees, and “the Pharisees also asked him how he had received his sight. He said unto them, He put clay upon mine eyes, and I washed; and do see.” RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 12

But with hearts hardened by prejudice and unbelief, the Pharisees said, “Give God the praise: we know that this man is a sinner. He answered and said, Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see. Then said they to him again, What did he to thee? how opened he thine eyes? He answered them, I have told you already, and ye did not hear: wherefore would ye hear it again? will ye also be his disciples? Then they reviled him, and said, Thou art his disciple; but we are Moses’ disciples. We know that God spake unto Moses: as for this fellow, we know not from whence he is.” RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 13

And the man answered, “Why herein is a marvelous thing, that ye know not from whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes. Now we know that God heareth not sinners; but if any man be a worshiper of God, and doeth His will, him He heareth. Since the world began was it not heard that any man opened the eyes of one that was born blind. If this man were not of God, he could do nothing. They answered and said unto him, Thou wast altogether born in sins, and dost thou teach us? And they cast him out.” RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 14

So the Pharisees made themselves even more blind than they already were; and not content with closing their own eyes, they tried to close the eyes of the man who had been healed. They saw that Jesus was working wonderful miracles, and they hated Him, fearing that He would be honored above them. Their hatred grew until they crucified Him, and mocked Him as He hung on the cross. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 15

Can we afford to tamper with jealousy,—the cause of so much of the misery in the world today? Is it not best to work on Christ's plan,—the plan outlined in the words, “Whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them”? RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 16

In the condition of the world today we see the terrible result of living for self. God's Spirit is being withdrawn from the earth, which in its moral pollution is as it was before the flood, and as it was in the days of Sodom and Gomorrah. So great is the corruption of the cities, that the moral atmosphere is as poisonous as the atmosphere of a pesthouse. From generation to generation sin has demoralized society, bringing a continual increase of depravity and degradation. Soon, from the highest authority in the universe will come the word, Shorten the days, lest no flesh be saved. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 17

The world is becoming more and more devoted to the service of sin. Each age, as it passes, bequeaths to the one following its accumulation of contamination. Satan is the god of the world. With despotic power he rules in palace and temple, working with intense earnestness to overthrow every plan set in operation to counteract the increasing disregard of God's law. The destructive power of his agencies is dedicated to bringing destruction and death into the world. In his hands temptation has become a science. Under his control, men sin by rule. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 18

The enemy works with great power through children of disobedience who are church-members. The life of one who is a professed Christian, and at the same time an instrument in Satan's hands, is a terrible power for evil. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 19

Is it not time for those who claim to believe the truth to awaken? Shall not the people who have had great light depart from all iniquity? Shall they not set a more Christlike example? Shall they not show with greater distinctness the power of the truth to sanctify? The Lord calls upon His Church to arise and shine amid the moral darkness. His people are to be a spectacle to the world, to angels, and to men. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 20

If we realized the solemnity of the time in which we are living, if we realized how greatly the world needs to see Christ's grace revealed in His followers, we would work more earnestly and diligently for the Master. Let those who claim to believe the truth put their belief into practice. Let all unite in carrying out God's will. All are to work in perfect harmony, receiving from the same source their influence and their power. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 21

Many who profess to love God and keep His commandments are making void His law. God is greatly dishonored by the failure of professed Christians to reveal the unity that should be seen among His children. No one can enter the heavenly portals who fails of practicing the great principle of love. Those who love God will love one another. They will show by a Christlike life that they are members of the royal family. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 22

It is the plan of God that every Conference, every church, shall cherish the spirit of sympathy and helpfulness. We are to build one another up in the most holy faith, seeking the impartation of the Holy Spirit, that in clear, bright rays we may reflect the light of heaven. Shall we allow the enemy to enter to cause discord and separation, to rob families of happiness and the Church of usefulness? Shall we allow him to use us to prevent the great and blessed work of reformation? Who can say, “It is well with my soul,” while evil-thinking and evil-speaking are allowed to rule in the heart? RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 23

Christianity transforms the character, bringing the will into harmony with the will of God. The Lord's people are plainly distinguished from worldlings because they follow God's plan. To those who are inclined to sow the seeds of jealousy and envy, Christ says, “Ye must be born again.” God grant that they may be thoroughly converted. RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 24

When the truth is practiced, when God's people are obedient to all His commandments, there will be no contention as to who is the greatest. There will be no strife for the supremacy. Then will be cherished the love that brings peace and joy into the home, and usefulness into the Church. Then will the Redeemer be honored. Then will be obeyed the injunction: “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” RH February 11, 1902, Art. A, par. 25