The Signs of the Times


March 11, 1889

Let Your Light Shine

[Morning talk at South Lancaster, Mass., January 16, 1889.]


“No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed, but setteth it on a candle-stick.” Your life is to be set on a candle-stick. It is not to be inclosed in four walls, but is to shine forth unto the world. “Ye are the salt of the earth;” but if the salt has lost its saving quality, of what use is it? You are to exert an influence that shall be as far-reaching as eternity. What is the savor, or saving quality, of the Christian's life?—It is the divine nature of which you are to be a partaker. It is the heavenly light which you are to diffuse to those around you. Society is to be better for your having lived, and eternity will show that your efforts have been blessed to the salvation of souls. ST March 11, 1889, par. 1

We are to be God's peculiar people, whom he has called out of darkness into his marvelous light to show forth his praise, zealous of good works. This is to be our work; we are to show forth his praise. How many of us have done this in the past? How many have given unbelievers the impression that the religion of Christ is the most desirable thing in the world? Unbelievers have said, “We do not want to be Christians. There is no joy in serving God. Religion is only a dead round of lifeless ceremonies. We want the attractions of the world.” Satan will see that they have these things. But Christ can give them rest and life and fullness of joy. When you see the glory of the Christian's hope, I know what you will do; you who have tasted and seen that the Lord is good, will reveal the praises of God. Have you not realized that Christ can save to the uttermost all who come unto God by him? When this fullness of salvation takes hold of your soul, you will have more and more of the praises of God on your lips, and more and more decided will be your testimony of the goodness of God. It will not be as it has been in the past. ST March 11, 1889, par. 2

When Satan comes to you to tell you that you are a great sinner, begin to look up to your Redeemer and to talk of his merits; that which will help you is to look to his light. Acknowledge your sin; but who was it that Christ came to save? Tell the enemy that “Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners,” and that you are saved by his matchless love. Jesus asked Simon a question in regard to two debtors. One owed his lord a small sum, and the other owed him a larger sum; but he forgave them both, and he asked Simon which debtor would love him most. He answered, “He to whom he forgave most.” We have been great sinners, but Christ died that we might be forgiven. The merits of his sacrifice are sufficient to present to his Father in our behalf. Those to whom he has forgiven most will love him most, and will stand nearest to his throne to praise him for his great love and infinite sacrifice. It is when we most fully comprehend the love of God that we best realize the sinfulness of sin, and the fullness of salvation. When we see the length of the chain that was let down for us, and understand something of the merits of that infinite sacrifice that Christ has made for us, the heart is melted with tenderness and contrition. ST March 11, 1889, par. 3

Why is it that you have not loved the Saviour more?—It is because you have been satisfied with your own goodness. You have been content to appear in the filthy garments of your own righteousness. But when self is crucified, and you come to Christ for his righteousness, your words of self-justification are gone. You speak, melted by the matchless love of your Saviour. You see his attractiveness, and lay hold of him who is the sinner's only hope. Then when you have found him, you are interested for somebody else. It is everything with us what kind of an influence we are exerting in the world. Shall we gather with Christ? Shall we draw men to the Man of Calvary? Lift him up. Self has been lifted up; but let self be humbled. Let self die. Educate the lips to talk of Jesus, and the heart to praise him, and it will become second nature to speak forth his matchless grace. You will go forth everywhere saying, “Hear what the Lord has done for my soul.” The more you tell of his mercy, the more you will have to tell. Let it be your testimony, “The life I now live in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of God.” “When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.” ST March 11, 1889, par. 4

I love him; for he is my love. I want to talk of him by the way. I want to praise him now and forever. Now will each one of us become a missionary? Shall it be written in the records of Heaven opposite our names, “Missionaries, co-laborers with Jesus Christ”? Do not disappoint our heavenly Father; and may God help you that you may say, “I live, yet not I; but Christ liveth in me.” ST March 11, 1889, par. 5

Christ is coming, and he is coming for his people. He says, “I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands.” The marks of the crucifixion are in his palms for us, and when he comes, “he shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied.” We are to seek to save souls; we are to present his sacrifice to the perishing; for when he comes, we want to enter into the joy of our Lord; and his joy is to see souls in his kingdom for whom he has died. We are to go on from strength to strength, growing more happy in his service, settled, rooted, grounded, in his love. He says: “Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.” Oh, what exaltation for fallen humanity! We are almost home. Christ is coming in the clouds of heaven, and he knows his sheep by name. He knows every soul who has come to him in faith, just as he knew that woman who touched him with the touch of faith. Jesus asked, “Who touched me?” The disciples were astonished that he should ask this. They answered, “Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me?” When the woman saw that she was not hid, she came and fell at his feet, and told her story, and praised him for his healing power. At the touch of her faith he perceived that virtue had gone out of him. Faith had taken it from him. No one else knew that she had touched him; but he knew it. The crowding multitude had not felt the restoration that she realized. The actual contact of her faith with him had brought the blessing. And this will bring Christ's virtue to us, that we may be prepared for his service and his kingdom. ST March 11, 1889, par. 6

When he comes, he will say to those who are looking for him, “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.” “Well done”—what have they done? They have built up his kingdom. They have shared in his trials, his sufferings, his labors; and he gives them a place among the blessed. What exaltation, what privilege is ours! We may have the worthiest ambition which Heaven can approve, in saving souls for eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. ST March 11, 1889, par. 7