Scripture for the day
Scripture for the day
Your daily fresh showers of the latter rain
Your daily fresh showers of the latter rain
Happy Sabbath - 7th day of the week
Happy Sabbath - 7th day of the week
And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made. Genesis 2: 2-3
Everyone who shall follow Christ will keep the commandments of God. The question will arise. Is this convenient for me? But if you flatter yourself that God does not require you to keep his commandments, because it interferes with your convenience, you make a sad mistake. Another leader is commanding you, instead of the Captain of your salvation. Jesus suffered and withstood the severest temptations, and, finally, yielded his life on Calvary's cross, to demonstrate to every member of the human family that the law of God is immutable, and that not one jot or tittle can be put aside. Satan has deceived the Christian world with the story that when Christ died he abolished the law. It was the cross of Calvary that exalted the law of God, and made it honorable. The cross is a monument of its immutability; and thus it is demonstrated before all worlds, and before the angels, and before all men, that the law cannot cease to exert eternal jurisdiction. It sustains the throne of God, and is the rule of his Government. If God could have changed one iota of his law, Jesus need not have come to our world to suffer and die; but he who was equal with the Father came and suffered even the death of the cross, to give man another probation.
Then if this great and infinite sacrifice has been made in our behalf, let us ask ourselves, What are we doing? Do we say, "Believe, believe on Christ, and that is all"? If we have not the faith that works by love, and purifies the soul from every stain of sin, then we have a spurious faith. Christ is not the minister of sin. And what is sin? The only definition given in God's word is, "Sin is the transgression of the law;" and the apostle Paul declares, "Where no law is, there is no transgression." The law is the great standard that will measure every man's character. The very test that was brought upon Adam in Eden will be applied to every member of the human family. We stand as Adam did, with opportunity for a second trial, to prove our allegiance to the Government of God. If we listen, as Adam did, to the first adversary of God's law, we shall be led to treat the words of God as of little consequence, and transgress the commandment. "The wages of sin is death." The Father loves us, and his love led him to suffer his beloved Son to make an atonement for us, that we might not perish but have everlasting life. To as many as received this precious Jesus, "to them gave he power to become the sons of God." John exclaims: "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." It is no cheap faith, that costs nothing and requires nothing, that we are to have. But John continues: "And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as He is pure."
Believe, believe, believe in Jesus, is the soothing lullaby that is lulling the world to sleep in the cradle of carnal security. Why, the devils believe and tremble. We need to be alarmed. We need to sound the cry, "Depart from all iniquity." When you bring Jesus into your daily life and character, you will not make your feelings the criterion of your religion; you will exalt him in the darkest hour; you will seek to point those around you to the cleansing fountain. You will not cry, "Away with God's commandments; I do not want to hear about them;" but with your Saviour you will "magnify the law and make it honorable."
We are in the perils of the last days, and Jesus has bidden us beware of false teachers. You are to know them by their fruits. Do they teach obedience to God, and yet break his plain words of command? God has given us reasoning faculties, and he wants us to use them. We are to "prove all things; hold fast that which is good." He has given us the revelation of his will, and we shall be without excuse if we do not study the Sacred Word. Hear what the voice of the true Shepherd says to you, and walk in the path of obedience and love. "This do," said Jesus, "and thou shalt live." We cannot afford to lose eternal life. May God grant that we may meet you around the throne of God, to sing with you the song of redemption in the kingdom of glory. The Signs of the Times-1887. 10. Article Title: This Do and Thou Shalt Live. EGWhite
6th day of the week
6th day of the week
And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so. And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so. And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day. Genesis 1: 24-31
We should do right because it is right, and not to avoid punishment, or for fear of some great calamity that may come upon us. I want to do right for the pleasure I have in righteousness. There is so much happiness to be found in doing good here; so much satisfaction in doing the will of God; so much pleasure in receiving his blessing. Then let us show that we are men and women of sound judgment, choosing our portion not in this world, but in that which is to come. Let us stand at our post, faithful in the discharge of every duty, having our lives hid with Christ in God, that when the chief Shepherd shall appear, we "shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away."
We have the promise that at Christ's second coming, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is; and he will take us home to himself, that where he is there we may be also. Then we shall enjoy with him all the glories of the world to come throughout the ceaseless ages of eternity. Why should those who look for this glorious hope be accounted foolish or insane? Is there not sanity and wisdom in entertaining this hope, the most satisfying of any brought to view in the word of God? Surely it is those who reject this hope, and scoff at the humble few that entertain it, who are insane and foolish; for they are devoting all their energies to the things of this short life, when there is offered them a life as enduring as the life of God.
"No sickness, sorrow, pain, or death shall reach that blissful shore:" there is nothing in the kingdom of God to disturb or annoy. This is the life that is promised to the overcomer,--a life of happiness and peace, a life of love and beauty. This "exceeding great reward" is within our reach, and can be gained simply by a life of obedience. But we have the privilege of choosing for ourselves. We can take this present life, so poor, so marred with sin, so filled with care and perplexity, or we can have eternal life where there is no sin, no distracting care, nothing to mar the peace of the inhabitant. It is strange that the majority, looking only to the pleasures of the world,choose this fleeting life, and fix their hopes here.
Here, then, are two classes: one seeking for the pleasures of this mortal life, the other for the enduring joys of immortality; one class are far from Christ, and satisfied with their condition, the other are seeking for the forgiveness of sins and for the Spirit of God; one class are battling against God and his truth, the other are warring against the lusts of the flesh, the spirit of the world, and Satan. One class are dreading the appearing of Christ, the Son of man, feeling that to them it is an overwhelming calamity; the other are looking for the coming of Christ the second time, without sin unto salvation. The one class will be rejected from the presence of God, and finally suffer the pangs of the second death; the other will have everlasting life at the right hand of God, where are pleasures for evermore.
God grant, dear reader, that when Jesus shall come the second time, you may be found ready and waiting; that you may be of that number who shall sing the song of redemption around the great white throne, casting their crowns at the feet of the redeemer. God grant that, with all the redeemed, you may have the glorious privilege of standing upon the sea of glass and walking the streets of gold. God grant that at that time there may be given to your hand a harp of gold, and that as you sweep its strings all Heaven may resound with your notes of joy and praise. The Signs of the Times-1887. 8. Article Title: The Coming of the Lord.EGWhite
5th day of the week
5th day of the week
And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. And the evening and the morning were the fifth day. Genesis 1: 20-23
The constant employment of the capabilities of man to amass wealth on earth binds the man to earth. He becomes a slave to mammon. His plans and thoughts and aspirations have no wider circle than his farm or mercantile house, and he is engrossed in heaping up his costly but empty stores; but in order to serve God we must find time for calm reflection and serious thought, else all the powers of the soul will be withdrawn from God. When wealth increases, the idolatrous heart becomes forgetful of God, and grows self-secure and satisfied. Religious duties are neglected. There is an impatience manifested under restraint, and the man becomes self-sufficient. All spiritual things are clouded, for the mind's eye is directed earthward. The worldly tendencies, both by nature and practice, have become more fully developed, and the spiritual faculties are paralyzed. Having eyes men see not; having ears they hear not. The gross, earthly mind cannot see the pure, sublime truths of the gospel, but views everything from a worldling's standpoint. The world comes in between the soul and Heaven. His eyes are blinded by the "god of this world," so that he cannot discern or appreciate the value of eternal things.
Spiritual things are spiritually discerned; and when the eye is evil, the whole body is full of darkness. "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof; but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever."
The attractions of this world must be eclipsed by the glory of the world to come, and our powers severed from its interests, and devoted to the interests of Heaven. Let us contemplate the eternal consequences of rightly employing our talents of influence and money for the purpose of saving souls. We shall store up treasures in Heaven, and receive the commendation of God, and enter into the joy of our Lord, who shall "see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied." But how few realize this and use their talents for God with the same energy and perseverance that they have manifested in the service of the world!
Oh, let us contemplate the amazing sacrifice that has been made for us! Let us try to appreciate the labor and energy Heaven is expending to reclaim the lost, and bring them back to the Father's house. Motives stronger, and agencies more powerful, could never be brought into operation,--the enjoyment of Heaven, the exceeding rewards for right-doing, the society of angels, the communion and love of God and his Son, the elevation and extension of all our powers throughout eternal ages; and it hath not "entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him." Are these not mighty incentives and encouragements to urge us to give our heart's loving service to our Creator and Redeemer?
And on the other hand the judgments of God pronounced against sin, the inevitable retribution, the degradation of our characters, and the final destruction, are presented in his word to warn us against the service of Satan.
Shall we not regard the great mercy of God? What more could he do? Let us place ourselves in right relation to him who has loved us with amazing love, and avail ourselves of the great privilege of becoming instruments in his hands to use all our powers in his service, that we may co-operate with the ministering angels and be co-laborers with God and Christ. The Signs of the Times-1887. 11. Article Title: Ye Cannot Serve God and Mammon. EGWhite
4th day of the week
4th day of the week
And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day. Genesis 1: 14-19
The great gift of salvation is freely offered to us, through Jesus Christ, on condition that we obey the law of God; and individually we are to accept the terms of life with the deepest humiliation and gratitude. None will ever enter the city of God who do not reverence the statutes of its government; and now is the time allotted to us to gain the mastery, through divine grace, over every rebellious thought and action; to work out our own salvation, not with boasting self-confidence, but with fear and trembling. We are not to pander to the prejudices and customs of this world at the expense of our obligations to God. We should live as in the sight of Heaven, with no other object for our ambition and toil than the glory of our Creator and Redeemer; live, believing that "every one of us shall give account of himself to God." We should ask ourselves, Am I fashioning my character after the Pattern God has given me? Is my eye fixed on Jesus? and are my actions controlled by the influences of Heaven? If our eye be single, our whole body will be full of light, and the world and its sentiments will not sway us from an undeviating progress toward the prize of our high calling in Christ Jesus. Christ prayed to his Father, "I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world"--oh, no; they are to be the light of the world--"but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil." We are to be in the world but not of it --shining with the reflected light of Jesus. We must not live for self, blending into the darkness of the world; but kept from its evil we must give our lives into an active, earnest service, as faithful soldiers for the Captain of our salvation. This will sanctify the soul. While we seek the salvation and benefit of others, we shall be workers together with God, learning his methods and partaking of his power.
We need not assume an appearance of melancholy, and sigh and groan and mourn to give evidence that we are Christians, especially devoted and sanctified. And it is no test of vital godliness to be talkative, parading our piety and our knowledge of the truth before others. But the real manifestation of Christ dwelling in your heart will be recognized by a well-ordered life and conversation. Your life will shine with the graces of the Spirit; meekness, kindness, tender compassion, the love of Jesus, and genuine lowliness of heart, will characterize your daily walk.
It is not the profession we make, but the fruits we bear that reveal the condition of the heart. Says the inspired apostle, "The wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace." True piety will not stiffen the character in stubborn, set ways and ideas. The Christian will not be unyielding and dictatorial, but will consider himself a learner in Christ's school. He will not be of that class who are fond of lecturing others, sermonizing, condemning, criticising, but will become meek and lowly in heart, representing Jesus, the Light of the world.
There is no need of being offensive in character, officiously taking a position above the brethren to point out their errors. This is the position of the Pharisee. Let the meekness of Jesus appear in words of wisdom that will inspire desires for the heavenly characteristics. Let the deportment be full of gentle courtesy as becometh the sons and daughters of God.
"For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy: I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit." If we are desirous of being saved from the evil there is in the world, we must seek this spirit of meekness; then we shall not be led into presumptuous sins; we shall appreciate the great responsibility we are under to observe the law of God, and feeling our weakness shall plead for the divine assistance, and God promises to dwell with the humble and contrite heart. Heaven is open to everyone who desires access to the Source of strength; and God, who spared not his own Son, will freely with him give us grace for every obligation of his law, and make us meet for an inheritance in light. The Signs of the Times-1887. 13. Article Title: The Necessity of Obedience and Faith. EGWhite
3rd day of the week
3rd day of the week
And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so. And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the third day. Genesis 1: 9-13
One presumptuous act, one deed in disregard of God's expressed will, lost for Adam his beautiful Eden home, and opened the floodgates of iniquity and woe upon our world; and yet men will declare that God is not particular, and does not require perfect obedience to his law. The precepts of Jehovah are as unchangeable as his eternal throne. To excuse sin on the plea that God is lax in his government is dishonoring to the great Governor of the universe, and perilous to man. It is an attempt to belittle his requirements, and to take away the force of law. Those who advocate such doctrine, place themselves in harmony with the first great rebel, and however high their professions of religion, Christ pronounces them "workers of iniquity." They are saying to the sinner, "It shall be well with thee in thy disobedience and transgression," as said the arch-deceiver in the garden of Eden.
God said to Adam, "Thou shalt not eat of it, for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." Satan came, and with specious words presented an enticing temptation. He argued that they were in bondage through the prohibition to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, that they should be as gods if they would but eat, and he denied the positive statement of God, that they should surely die if they partook of the fruit. The same arguments are used now by all who trample upon the law of God. "Obedience is bondage," men declare, and disobedience is freedom, such as they could never realize under the restrictions of the law. Men are flattered in their course of sin, to believe that they are rising in the scale of greatness, as Satan flattered Adam and Eve to believe they would be as gods if they would but disregard the commandment of their Creator. How many are reiterating his statements while they profess to be sinless!
We need not be deceived by these high professions of holiness which deny the power thereof by rejecting the law of God. "Sin is the transgression of the law," writes the beloved John; and "he that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected." Here is the test of every man's profession. We cannot accord holiness to any man without bringing him to the great measurement of God's only standard for holiness, in Heaven or in earth. If men feel no weight of the moral law, if they belittle and make light of God's precepts, if they break one of the least of these commandments and teach men so, they shall be of no esteem in the sight of Heaven, and we may know their claims are without foundation. Christ, who died to magnify the law, and to attest its validity and immutability, says of such, "I know you not whence ye are; depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity."
God does not change his plans and devise new expedients to save man in different ages or dispensations. With him "is no variableness, neither shadow of turning." He does not abolish the law to bring man into harmony with himself. If he had proposed to destroy the jurisdiction of the law over man at any time, he would have done so when Adam's failure to keep its requirements brought him under its terrible condemnation. But God does not provide any such escape in this emergency. He expels the guilty, pair from the garden. The law says the penalty of sin is death, and they have brought on themselves, by deliberate choice, the loss of eternal life. The course of God toward the rebellious has not changed. There is no way back to innocence and life except through repentance for having transgressed God's law, and faith in the merits of the divine sacrifice, who has suffered for your transgressions of the past; and you are accepted in the Beloved on condition of obedience to the commandments of your Creator. The Signs of the Times-1887. 13. Article Title: The Necessity of Obedience and Faith. EGWhite
2nd day of the week
2nd day of the week
And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day. Genesis 1: 6-8
If we would enter Heaven we should strive to bring all that we can of Heaven into our lives on earth. The religion of Christ never degrades the receiver. It exerts a heavenly influence upon the minds and manners of men. When the word of God finds access to the hearts of the rough and coarse, it commences a process of refining upon the character, and those who endure it become humble and teachable, like little children. The mighty cleaver of truth has severed them from the world, and then the work to be accomplished, to mould them after the divine Pattern, is begun. They are to be living stones in the temple of God, and are hewed, and squared, and chiseled, to fit them for God's building. Those who are naturally full of self-esteem become meek and lowly of heart. They have a change of character, and are transformed by the renewing of their minds, and the regeneration of the Holy Spirit.
God said in the beginning, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness;" but sin has almost obliterated the moral image of God in man. This lamentable condition would have known no change or hope if Jesus had not come down to our world to be man's Saviour and Example. In the midst of a world's moral degradation he stands, a beautiful and spotless character, the one model for man's imitation. We must study, and copy, and follow the Lord Jesus Christ; then we shall bring the loveliness of his character into our own life, and weave his beauty into our daily words and actions. Thus we shall stand before God with acceptance, and win back by conflict with the principalities of darkness, the power of self-control, and the love of God that Adam lost in the fall. Through Christ we may possess the spirit of love and obedience to the commands of God. Through his merits it may be restored in our fallen natures; and when the Judgment shall sit and the books be opened, we may be the recipients of God's approval.
John saw the holy city, the New Jerusalem, with its twelve gates of pearl and twelve foundations of precious stones, coming down from God out of Heaven. The streets are of transparent gold, clear as crystal. Everyone who shall enter those gates and walk those streets will here have been changed and purified by the power of the truth; and the crown of immortal glory will adorn the brow of the overcomer.
The nations that have kept the truth shall enter in, and the voice of the Son of God will pronounce the glad welcome, "Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city."
Then how can we afford to devote our God-given powers to our own pleasure for one moment? We must yield our whole service to our Master. We must wage, continuously, the battle of self-denial and sacrifice. Christ died that we might live, and with the same spirit of love we should seek to win souls as the purchase of his blood. The word of God, through his apostle, declares, "We are laborers together with God." Our work may seem at times very discouraging; but if one soul is turned from the error of his way to righteousness, there is joy in Heaven. The Father and the Son rejoice in the presence of the angels. The song of triumph is sung and echoed and re-echoed through the courts of Heaven. Then why should we not be wise in this life, and work for the salvation of man to the glory of God? "They that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars forever and ever." Your lives must here be refined, ennobled, elevated; and Christ, the hope of glory, must be formed within you. Your favorite sins will be laid aside; you will fear to offend God, and you will love his law. The Signs of the Times-1887. 14. Article Title: The Preparation for Heaven. EGWhite
1st day of the week
1st day of the week
And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. Genesis 1: 3-5
We cannot wait until the Judgment before we consent to deny self and to lift the cross. It will be too late then to form characters for Heaven. It is here and now that we must take sides with humble, self-denying Redeemer. It is here we must overcome envy, strife, selfishness, love of money, and love of the world. It is here that we must enter the school of Christ and learn the precious lesson of meekness and lowliness of mind; and here it must be our aim and our earnest effort to be loyal to the God of Heaven, by obeying all his commandments.
Our only safety is in constant communion with God. Our petitions should ascend in faith that he will keep us unspotted from the corruptions of the world. Did not Jesus tell us that iniquity would abound in the last days? But his grace will be granted to us according to our day. Those who are open to the influence of the Spirit of God will receive strength to withstand the evils of this degenerate age.
Enoch walked with God three hundred years previous to his translation, and the state of the world was not more favorable for the perfection of Christian character then than it is to-day. How did Enoch walk with God? He educated his mind and heart to ever feel the presence of God, and when in perplexity his prayers would ascend to God to keep him, to teach him his will. "What shall I do to honor thee, my God?" was his prayer. His will was merged in the will of God, and his feet were constantly directed in the path of God's commandments. Enoch was a representative of those who shall be on the earth when Christ shall come, who will be translated to Heaven and never taste of death. It is fitting that we pray, as did David, "Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law."
Many close their eyes, lest they shall see the truth. They do not want to see the defects in their life and character, and it disturbs them if you mention to them anything about God's law. They have discarded God's standard and have chosen a standard of their own. Their hearts are not inclined to keep the way of the Lord, for it runs in an opposite direction from the path they had marked out. But we want to warn you: Be not deceived by the first great adversary of God's law. When the Judgment is set and the books opened, your life and mine will be measured by the law of the Most High. Those who have washed their robes of character and made them white in the blood of the Lamb, will be found keeping the commandments of God; and when every man is judged according to the things written in the books, they will receive the commendation of Heaven and an eternal inheritance. The Signs of the Times-1887. 15. Article Title: The Judgment of the Great Day. EGWhite