The Review and Herald

701/1902

1894

January 2, 1894

Look Not Every Man On His Own Things

EGW

“Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.” RH January 2, 1894, par. 1

Let us not longer deceive ourselves. Let us walk in meekness and humility, daily correcting our faults, and let us never again separate our souls from God by selfish assumption and pride. Let us not cherish a feeling of lofty supremacy, that we may not look upon ourselves as though we were better than we are, and superior to those around us. RH January 2, 1894, par. 2

When the heart is softened and subdued by the grace of Christ, there is peace and satisfaction in the soul; for the love of Christ rules in the heart, bringing into captivity the secret motives of action. Then the easily aroused temper is soothed by the oil of grace. The tumultuous heart at the word of Christ grows calm. When there is a sense of sins forgiven through the merit of the blood of Christ, and there is a consciousness of union with Christ, we are encouraged to strive more earnestly to correct every wrong habit, and our harsh manner will be refined and cease to work against the sanctifying influences of the truth, against the existence of the union which Christ prayed should be manifested among his disciples. When the people of God are under the influence of the Holy Spirit, all variance will disappear, and that which we have thought should be corrected in our brethren will not serve to alienate us from them; for we shall feel that greater evils have existed in our own hearts than those we have criticised in our brethren. RH January 2, 1894, par. 3

Christ says, “Why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out the thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.” Why is it that so many forget how often they grieve the Holy Spirit by wicked works, and then presume to judge, accuse, and condemn their brethren? The Lord sees in them greater wrongs than they see in their brethren. If the spirit of criticism had not been found in the church; if the affections had not been centered upon self; if there had been no coldness in the association of the members of the church one with another, the influence of the people of God would have been of a vastly different character on the world. But how can the people of God be workers together with God, when in spirit they are wholly unlike Christ, and their actions contrary to his instruction? The Lord cannot be a minister to sin, and reveal himself graciously unto you when you cherish an unyielding, harsh spirit, and are ever ready to manifest unkindness to those with whom you come in contact. By your lack of harmony, by your objectionable spirit, you misrepresent Christ, you falsify the truth. Holy angels cannot work with you in saving precious souls when you do not manifest wisdom in dealing with human minds, and cannot adapt yourself to different individuals in the manner of your work. It is an easy matter to irritate and to destroy; but it takes tact and Christlike wisdom to deal tenderly and kindly and lovingly with those with whom you associate. Many among us will have to learn the A-B-C of Christian courtesy; for their spirit and manner toward those not of the same faith as themselves, are offensive both to man and to God. Better, far better would it be for the truth and its advancement, if none of this class were connected with it unless they shall be transformed in character. O that all among us would cease to think or speak evil of others! O that all might see themselves and their neighbors in a true light! The converting power of God must come upon your hearts, that you may realize your true need. God has not placed those of you who imagine you see faults in others and in the work, to guide the ship of the gospel into the harbor. The Lord himself is at the helm. RH January 2, 1894, par. 4

God has given to every man his work, and in his vocation he is so to relate himself to his fellow-men that he can work with and for them, ever contributing of his power through the grace given unto him, to enlighten those who sit in darkness. “Let your light so shine before men [not merely before believers, but before unbelievers, in all vocations in life, in every branch of business, in all commerce, in merchandise, in all practical works and professions], that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” RH January 2, 1894, par. 5

It is the day of God's preparation, and every day you need to look carefully to your hearts, and study the lessons, the life, and character of Christ, that you may in no case misrepresent your dear Saviour and lead souls into false paths. Learn to practice the lessons of Christ, learn to follow his example in kindness and courtesy, in uplifting those with whom you associate to what is high and holy. “And above all these things put on charity [love], which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.” RH January 2, 1894, par. 6

Let us cultivate the grace of gratitude. Let the praises of God and of the Lamb be continually upon our lips; let the heart be a well-spring of gratitude that cannot be repressed, Christ in you a well of water springing up unto everlasting life. “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.” RH January 2, 1894, par. 7

The Lord Jesus is our only helper. Through his grace we shall learn to cultivate love, to educate ourselves to speak kindly and tenderly. Through his grace our cold, harsh manners will be transformed. The law of kindness will be upon our lips, and those who are under the precious influences of the Holy Spirit, will not feel that it is an evidence of weakness to weep with those who weep, to rejoice with them that rejoice. We are to cultivate heavenly excellences of character. We are to learn what it means to have good-will toward all men, a sincere desire to be as sunshine and not as shadow in the lives of others. RH January 2, 1894, par. 8

My brethren, let your hearts become broken and contrite. Let expressions of sympathy and love, which will not blister the tongue, flow from your lips. Let others feel that warmth which love can create in the heart, and educate the professed disciples of Christ to correct the evils that have so long existed,—selfishness, coldness, and hardheartedness. All these traits reveal the fact that Christ is not abiding in the soul. “Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, long-suffering; forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any.” The example of the great Pattern is before us; shall we behold and become changed? RH January 2, 1894, par. 9

The Lord has given special directions in his word as to how we as Christians should conduct ourselves toward all the children of God. God would teach us what is due to us, by teaching us what is due from ourselves to others. He would have us understand what his will is in our relation to those around us. Strengthened in spirit by the grace of God, we are to manifest a living interest in those with whom we associate; for good works are to be the fruit that will manifest itself upon the Christian tree. In the school of Christ we are to find peace and happiness in gentleness and kindness toward others. We are to follow the example of Jesus Christ our Pattern, and live not to please ourselves, but as laborers together with God; practicing his self-denial, and working as Christ worked to draw all men unto him. We are not to indulge ourselves in selfish independence, but to manifest deep, earnest love for the brethren. RH January 2, 1894, par. 10

“If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels of mercies, fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.” This is the lesson that we are to learn both as individuals and as churches. We are to “put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him.” We are to love as brethren, showing that love in sympathy and courtesy. The injunction of the apostle is, “Be pitiful, be courteous.” RH January 2, 1894, par. 11