Ms 49, 1906

Ms 49, 1906

Sermon/Lessons From the First Chapter of Second Peter

Loma Linda, California

April 14, 1906

Portions of this manuscript are published in RH 06/14/1906.

(Sermon, Mrs. E. G. White, Loma Linda Sanitarium Parlor, Loma Linda, Calif., Sabbath, April 14, 1906, 11 A.M.) 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 1

“Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.” [2 Peter 1:1.] 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 2

Here are brought to view the Father and the Son, in their distinct personalities, with all the power that we need if we will only ask for it. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 3

“Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, according as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through (not the ignorance, but) the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue.” [Verses 2, 3.] 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 4

These words are addressed to those that claim to be Christ’s; and so, whatever may be our profession, whatever may be our mission, whatever may be our calling, this instruction is appropriate to every one of us. And in thus grasping the opportunities, the privileges, that are ours, we are preparing for the future, higher school. In this preparatory work we need to have our hearts open and susceptible to heavenly influences, in order that we may develop the character that God has made it possible for us to develop through the gift of His beloved Son. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16.] 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 5

In view of God’s promises, it is our privilege always to be hopeful. We are to mark the example that is given us in the character of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. None need fail of attaining, in his sphere, perfection of Christian character. Abundant provision has been made for us. Christ laid aside His kingly crown and royal robe, clothed His divinity with humanity, and left the courts of heaven to come to this earth to save mankind. He did not lay aside His divinity, but clothed divinity with humanity, that, as a divine-human Saviour, He might stand by the side of humanity. In heaven He was attended by myriads of angels that delighted to do His will; but when He came to this earth, He was accompanied by no choirs of angels; He came as a helpless babe, born of humble parentage. In poverty and obscurity He obtained an education and training for His lifework. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 6

Those who are poor and needy, and whose lives are filled with hardships and distress, may be sustained and comforted by the thought that their Saviour can sympathize with their sorrows. In all points He was tempted like as we are, and yet without sin. In His humanity, perfected by a life of holiness, He revealed that through co-operation with divinity, humanity may in this world attain unto perfection of character. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 7

Within the reach of every person in our world God has placed “all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.” [2 Peter 1:3-7.] 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 8

This is the instruction we should heed. In this scripture is set forth the perfection that we are all to reach. We are to live on the plan of addition; and if we do this, there will be granted us the grace spoken of in the second verse: “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you”—multiplied “through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord.” [Verse 2.] And so if we live on the plan of addition, Christ will work in our behalf on the plan of multiplication. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 9

“For if these things be in you and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” [Verse 8.] 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 10

Here is the possibility, here is the assurance; and it is our privilege to lay right hold upon every advantage of encouragement that is provided for us, that we may place ourselves in right relation to Christ, and thus perfect Christian character. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 11

“For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and can not see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.” [Verses 8, 9.] 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 12

How? Here was the great purging sacrifice that Christ made on the cross of Calvary. His life alone could pay the penalty of the transgression and redeem every human being who would consent to receive Christ. But there is placed upon them the burden of laying right hold upon the promises. Will they take advantage of the opportunity that is theirs? 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 13

“But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.” “Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure.” [Verses 9, 10.] It depends on you to take advantage of every promise that is given you, that you may perfect a Christian character, in order that the gates of the city of God may be thrown open to you, and that you may enter into those gates. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 14

“Give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall.” [Verse 10.] There is a work resting upon every one of us. We must co-operate with Christ Jesus. We must lay right hold of every advantage He has given us and show that we receive it; for “to as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to as many as believed on His name.” [John 1:12.] “For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.” [2 Peter 1:11.] Precious, precious assurance! 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 15

On every hand we see men anxious to insure their lives by taking out a life insurance policy. Here is your life insurance policy—an eternal life insurance policy offered to all who carry out the conditions outlined in this chapter. Jesus Christ is standing by your side, to co-operate with you in complying with the conditions of receiving eternal life. As laborers together with God, all may follow Christ’s example of faith and obedience. Unto every one who lays hold of the hope, the encouragement, the light, the grace, the peace set before him in the gospel will be ministered an abundant entrance into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 16

“Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth.” [Verse 12.] 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 17

Every one of us may have living faith in the power of Christ to keep our feet from walking in false paths. The provisions of grace in our behalf are so ample that we are constrained, with the apostle John, to exclaim: 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 18

“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew Him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is.” [1 John 3:1, 2.] What a promise! 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 19

“And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as He is pure.” [Verse 3.] 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 20

When we come into trial, let us think of these things. O how often I have thought of them! And when in the night season I have seen those who claim to represent the truth, trying in every way to undermine my influence, I have been in distress and agony—to think that many accept as truth the words of sophistry spoken. Because of the high position of some ministers and physicians who speak these words of unbelief and worldly wisdom, many are turned away from the truth by these influences. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 21

Night after night, scenes are passing before me. Often I do not sleep later than two o’clock, and sometimes no later than eleven or twelve o’clock. It is presented to me that notwithstanding all the discouragements that come, there is with us, and accompanying our labors, a character, a power of influence, which no living man can thwart. This influence will tell. God desires us to give the warning with no uncertain sound. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 22

There are two spirits in our world—a spirit of belief and a spirit of unbelief. In the latter days some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. We expect that those who will not harmonize with Christ will develop into a warring element; but we should not think that this will do us harm. We must remember that they that are for us are more than they that can be against us. This is my hope and strength and power with the people. I believe in God. I know in whom I believe. I believe the testimonies that God has given us. From childhood I have had many, many experiences that have strengthened my faith in the work that God has given me to do. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 23

Early in my public labors, I was bidden by the Lord, “Write, write the things that are revealed to you.” At the time this message came to me, I could not hold my hand steady. My physical condition made it impossible for me to write. But again came the word, “Write the things that are revealed to you.” I obeyed; and as the result, I wrote page after page, page after page with comparative ease. Who told me what to write? Who steadied that right hand and made it possible for me to use a pen?—Why, it was the Lord. When we come into right relation with the Lord, and give ourselves wholly to Him, we shall see the miracle-working power of God in our words and in our deeds. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 24

In the early days of the message, when our numbers were few, we studied diligently to understand the meaning of many Scriptures. At times it seemed as if no explanation could be given. My mind seemed to be locked to an understanding of the Word; but when our brethren who had assembled to study together came to a point where they could go no further, and had recourse to earnest prayer, the Spirit of God would rest upon me, and I would be taken off in vision and instructed in regard to the relation of Scripture to Scripture. These experiences were repeated over and over and over again. Thus the truths of the third angel’s message were revealed, point by point. Think you that my faith in this message will ever waver? Think you that I can remain silent, when I see an effort being made to sweep away the foundation pillars of our faith? I am as thoroughly established in those truths as it is possible for a person to be. I can never forget the experience I have passed through. God has confirmed my belief by many evidences of His power. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 25

The light that I have received I have written out, and much of it is now shining through my printed books—Great Controversy, Patriarchs and Prophets, Desire of Ages, and many other works. When I visited Battle Creek in the summer of 1904, we had to meet opposition from those who ought to have sustained me; and one day, before speaking in the tabernacle, I asked that a copy of each of my books be brought into the tabernacle and placed on the rostrum. And then, while speaking, I appealed to the great congregation, among whom there were some who used to listen to my husband and myself years in the past at Battle Creek. “You desire to hear what Sister White believes,” I said. “She believes that Jesus Christ is a personal Saviour, just as she has ever believed. She does not try to do away with His personality, and put Him into a leaf or a flower or anything else that He has created.” These natural things are the works of His creation. Our heavenly Father is the God of the universe, and Christ is the divine Son, the One equal with the Father. And now here are the books I have written, in which is contained the light given me. I have been unable to attend school since an early age, and the teachings in these books originate from a source higher than that of man. For thirty-six years my husband and myself labored side by side. Time and again we had to meet all phases of error and apostasy, and at such times special light would shine forth with beauty and clearness from the Word of God; and thus light has come. I can no more question the work that God has given me to do than I can question the fact that I am living today. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 26

These books that have been published are now immortalized in print. And there is throughout the whole a harmony with my present teaching. Some of the writings on these pages were given under circumstances so remarkable as to evidence the wonder-working power of God in behalf of His truth. Sometimes while I was in vision, my friends would approach me and exclaim, “Why, she does not breathe!” Placing a mirror before my lips, they found that no moisture gathered on the glass. And it was while there was no sign of any breathing that I kept talking of the things that were being presented before me. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 27

These things were thus given to substantiate the faith of all, that in these last days we might have confidence in the Spirit of prophecy. I thank God that He has preserved my life thus far, and that He has preserved my voice, which in my early youth physicians and friends declared would be silent in three months. The God of heaven saw that I needed to pass through an experience in order to be prepared for the work He had for me to do. For the past half century my faith in the ultimate triumph of the third angel’s message, and everything connected with it, has been substantiated by the wonderful experiences through which I have passed. This is why I am willing to do anything and everything to publish books and to donate books. I know that the light contained in these books is the light of heaven. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 28

One of my books I gave outright to the educational work. All the profits go toward the payment of debts on our schools. Already about two hundred thousand dollars of debts have been paid in this way. And I have just given another of my books, Ministry of Healing, for the benefit of our sanitarium work. The sale of this book will help pay the debts on our Southern California sanitariums, including Loma Linda, as well as the debts on many other sanitariums in all parts of the world. I thank the Lord with heart and voice for His great goodness to me in permitting me to labor for Him. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 29

I ask you to study the things that are written in these books. To John, the aged apostle, came the message, “Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter.” [Revelation 1:19.] The Lord has bidden me write that which has been revealed to me. I have written thousands of pages that are now in printed form. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 30

The Lord has given us the Loma Linda Sanitarium, because He desires to help the sick and to surround them with every advantage possible for recovery of health. He desires to bring hope to the hopeless and courage to the desponding. He desires to lift the afflicted and the suffering out of their weakness and give them a strength that is beyond expression. All He asks in return is that they believe. “As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.” [John 1:12.] It is our privilege to believe in a mighty power that is out of and beyond ourselves. When we, as little children, take Christ at His word, when we grasp His promises by faith, we shall have a power that is greater than human power—a power that will unite us with the strength of heaven. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 31

Let us give our hearts to God; for we have only a little time remaining. We are living in the last days. On every hand are signs of the end. Life is becoming more and still more uncertain. We hear of numerous wrecks and other disasters; we hear of many who are killed in an instant, without a moment’s warning. Let us determine not to wait until a more convenient season before preparing to meet the Lord in peace when He comes. Let us give ourselves wholly to Him, and then work for the salvation of other souls, from house to house, and wherever we may be. I am expending all the means that I have in the work of advancing the third angel’s message. We should be planning to win souls to Christ, and now is our time to do this work. The harvest is ready, but the reapers are few. From all parts of the world we are receiving letters telling us that the light is shining in clear rays in distant lands, and that the honest in heart are accepting the evidences of the truth for this time. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 32

Amid the error that is overspreading the whole earth, let us strive to stand firm on the platform of eternal truth. Let us put on the whole armor of God; for we are told that in this time Satan himself will work miracles before the people; and as we see these things, we must be prepared to withstand their deceptive influence. Whatever is presented by the enemy as truth ought not to influence us; for we should be under the instruction of the great Author of all truth. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 33

I feel an intense interest in the future work and prosperity of the Loma Linda Sanitarium. God has not given us these buildings for naught. He has not given them for us simply to take pride and comfort in. We know that this beautiful property has been given us as an indication of a great work that is to be done in Southern California for the Lord. We are to help every soul in need of help. We desire to see souls converted, that finally they may enter in through the gates into the city of our God. We desire to see these souls receive the crown of life and a golden harp and a palm branch of victory. We desire that they shall have life, eternal life, in the kingdom of glory. 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 34

This is why I am willing, so long as my life is spared, to bear the testimony that God may give me. Pray, pray, I beseech of you who are here in this sanitarium. And you who have no hope, do not wait; do not, I beg of you, wait a moment. Get hold of it, oh, get hold of it; for you can have hope. It is offered all who believe in Christ Jesus, and you can have it. If you will work on the plan of addition, God will work on the plan of multiplication, and you will have peace and joy and assurance—a foundation that can never fail. Then you will be prepared to meet the King in His beauty and will hear Him say: 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 35

“Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.” [Matthew 25:23.] 21LtMs, Ms 49, 1906, par. 36