The Review and Herald

485/1902

May 28, 1889

Let Us Go Without the Camp

[Sermon at Potterville, Mich., November 23, 1888.]

EGW

Text: “Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach. For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come. By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to his name. But to do good and to communicate forget not; for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.” Hebrews 13:13-16. RH May 28, 1889, par. 1

We should continually keep before us the sacrifice that was made by our Saviour, lest we should think that we are making wonderful sacrifices in our Christian life. He made an infinite sacrifice that we might have eternal life. The Father made a sacrifice the greatness of which no man can comprehend. The angels of heaven were amazed when the Father consented to give his only Son for a fallen race. When we can approach to an appreciation of the sacrifice made by the Father and the Son, we shall have a better appreciation of the value of souls. We should not study our own ease, since Christ has died for us, but we should be willing to deny self, to go without the camp, bearing his reproach. RH May 28, 1889, par. 2

Christ resigned his high position as commander of the hosts of heaven. He laid aside his royal robes and his kingly crown, clothed his divinity with humanity, and came to this world, all seared and marred with the curse, to become a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief. In view of his sufferings for us, shall we be found mourning because of difficulty and hardship? Shall we in the sight of the universe be found ungrateful, with no response to the love that Christ has manifested for us? Christ has stooped that he might lift fallen man. He has purposed to elevate, and ennoble, and refine us, that we may reflect heaven's love in the world. RH May 28, 1889, par. 3

It is our privilege to obtain clearer and more distinct views of the goodness and mercy of God; and why do we remain in a cold and spiritless condition? Why do we seem to be incapable of manifesting tender love and sympathy for one another? Why do we not speak forth the praises of Him who has given his life that we might have salvation? Let us offer to him continually the sacrifices of praise. Satan is always ready to discourage. He will help those whom he has discouraged to gather still more doubt and unbelief to their souls. He will make you believe that you are having a very hard time in the service of Christ, when it is not so at all. He will encourage you to think that your feelings and fancies are facts, that God is a hard master, and he will lead you, by your attitude of despondency, to misrepresent to the world the character of God, and the nature of his service. We should fix our eye upon Jesus our Saviour. We should be continually growing up into Christ our living head. We want more knowledge, more grace. New affections should be planted in our hearts to expel the old affections. Divine power must substitute high and holy motives for those that were selfish and unholy. We must follow on to know the Lord. We should educate the mind to dwell on heavenly things. We should accustom the heart to dwell in a frame of gratitude and praise. The more we praise God, the more we shall have to praise him for, and our hearts will become attuned to his praise. RH May 28, 1889, par. 4

We have altogether too much familiar intercourse with Satan. We argue with him. We enter right into conversation with him, and treat him as a guest, coming into agreement with him. It is in this way that he presents the faults of our brethren to us, and magnifies them until we can see nothing good in their characters. Some imagine that they have a wonderful zeal for God, that they are inspired to set things in order, that they have a spirit of discernment, when it is really an inspiration that Satan has imparted to them. They are possessed of a cold, unsympathetic, unforgiving, critical spirit, that is not of God at all. RH May 28, 1889, par. 5

We should look tenderly upon our brethren, who are encompassed with human infirmities as we are. When your brother does wrong, you have directions from your Master as to what you should do. You should go right to him in meekness and love, and make him feel that you regard him as precious in the sight of God. God holds you responsible for the treatment of your brother. If you are unkind, unforgiving, God cannot forgive you. You should be more pitiful and tender toward the erring. You should have hearts from which will flow compassion and love toward others. You should not only seek out those whom your taste would lead you to prefer, those who echo your opinions and sentiments, but you should also go to those who really need Christ-like pity and forbearance. Did Christ turn away from those who were defiled with sin, who came to him for pardon? RH May 28, 1889, par. 6

At one time Jesus sat in Simon's house, and a woman who was a sinner came in with an alabaster box of very precious ointment, and she broke her box and poured out the ointment on the head of Jesus. Simon criticised Jesus because he did not rebuke the woman. He thought, “This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him; for she is a sinner.” Jesus turned to Simon, and said, “Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on. There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owned five hundred pence, and other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most? Simon answered and said, I suppose that he to whom he forgave most, and he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged.” Those who have lived in rebellion against God, when they do repent and turn to the Lord, are most fervent in their love. They give better service to God than those who have grown cold in his service, who have for years professed to be his children and loyal to his law. A wonderful change takes place in a truly converted soul. The old imperfections that made them uncourteous and forbidding are not manifested. They love Jesus, and those for whom he died. How do you know when you turn away from those who do not seem desirable, but that you are turning away from those for whom Jesus is seeking? Perhaps, at the very moment that you turn from them, they are in the greatest need of your tenderness and compassion. There is too much of this critical spirit, of standing back in indifference to the welfare of others. We need Christian love. We need to learn meekness and lowliness of heart in the school of Christ. We should be filled with the spirit of the message of warning and mercy which we are to bear to a dying world. We have only begun to drink of the fountain of life. As we follow on to know the Lord, increasing light will shine upon us, and our path will grow brighter and brighter unto the perfect day. RH May 28, 1889, par. 7

We should study more earnestly the character of our Saviour. We should imitate the lovely Pattern that God has given us. We should dwell upon the matchless charms of Jesus until there will be nothing satisfying in this perishing world. We should desire to reflect his image in kindness, in courtesy, in gentleness, and love, then “when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.” In a little while every one who is a child of God will have his seal placed upon him. O that it may be placed upon our foreheads! Who can endure the thought of being passed by when the angel goes forth to seal the servants of God in their foreheads? RH May 28, 1889, par. 8

If Christ can plead for us in the heavenly sanctuary, if our works are wrought in him, if we have brought his grace and truth into our character-building, we shall be recognized by the Lord as the subjects of his kingdom. If we are the children of God, we shall love one another as Christ has loved us. This cold sternness that makes us unapproachable is not of Christ, but of Satan. Jesus said, “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” Those who open the door of the heart that Jesus may come in, will be filled with love and gratitude. They will not desire to shut up the light God has given them. They will gather up the rays of divine glory, and flash them athwart the pathway of others. RH May 28, 1889, par. 9

We should plead with God for his blessings, as Moses pleaded with him in the mount. We have no time to wait. Our Lord is coming, and it is time to set our house in order. There is a great work to be done, and if you go to your neighbor with your heart all warm and glowing with love, do you not think that you can find the key to unlock your neighbor's heart? The trouble with our work has been that we have been content to present a cold theory of the truth. We have not let our hearts melt down before those with whom we work. O that the Lord might quicken our understanding, and give us a realization of the time in which we are living! Many have walked in the sparks of their own kindling, but we should plead with God as did Moses, advancing step by step until we can say, “Show me thy glory.” Moses was in earnest in the matter, and the Lord put him in a cleft in the rock, and let his goodness pass before him. Have you thought of that? He let his goodness pass before him. O my brethren, what will not the Lord do for us, if we will but seek him with all the heart? RH May 28, 1889, par. 10

How can we presume to try to help others, unless we have obtained help ourselves? Jesus has said, “Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.... For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.... It is the Spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” We must be one with him. We must love those for whom he gave his life. “If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.” All heaven is interested for our salvation. Will we be interested for our own salvation? Let us cast away every doubt, everything that would shroud our souls in darkness. We know that the world is filled with iniquity, but shall we think and talk of that only? Shall we look here and there for defects and evils? Shall we look critically at the characters of our brethren? O let us think of the goodness of God! Let us tell of his power, sing of his love. Let us commit our souls unto God as unto a faithful Creator, and stop worrying and fretting. God will help us to live above the things of this life, and give us an abundance of good things to think about and to talk about. Let us come into the presence of Christ. He is cleansing the heavenly sanctuary. Let us enter there by faith. Provision has been made for our cleansing. A fountain has been opened for sin and uncleanness. Ask in faith for the grace of God, and you will not ask in vain. RH May 28, 1889, par. 11

Shall we wait till we feel that we are cleansed before we believe it?—No; Christ has promised that “if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” It will not hurt your dignity to confess your sins. Away with this false dignity,. Fall on the Rock and be broken, and then Christ will give you the true and heavenly dignity. RH May 28, 1889, par. 12

There are sins and mistakes and errors to be confessed. The record has been made in the books of heaven, but when confession is made from contrite hearts, the words of the apostle are fulfilled, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” God requires repentance and confession, and restitution will always follow genuine repentance. If you have prevaricated, if you have borne false witness, if you have misjudged and misinterpreted your brother, if you have misstated his words, ridiculed him, if you have injured his influence in any way, go right to the persons with whom you have conversed about him, with whom you have united in this work, and take all your injurious misstatements back. Confess the wrong that you have done your brother; for your sin will stand charged against you in the books of record until you do all that lies in your power to correct the evil your words have wrought. When you have done all that God requires of you, pardon will be written against your name. RH May 28, 1889, par. 13