The Articles of Ellen Gould Harmon White as printed in the Signs of the Times.
October 24, 1878 A Lesson for the Times
Filed under: EG White Articles

We are often pained as we see the little moral power possessed by the professed followers of Christ. When tempted on the point of appetite, few will firmly stand the test. Many turn from light and knowledge, and sacrifice principle to indulge their taste. They eat when they have no need of eating, and at irregular periods, because they have no moral strength to resist their inclinations. As the result of this gratification of taste, the abused stomach rebels, suffering follows, and a weary taxation of the friends of the sufferer.

Many indulge appetite at the expense of health and the powers of intellect, so that they cannot appreciate the plan of salvation. What appreciation can such ones have of the temptation of Christ in the wilderness, and of the victory he gained upon the point of appetite? It is impossible for them to have exalted views of God, and to realize the claims of his law. Many of the professed followers of Christ are forgetful of the great sacrifice made by him on their account. The Majesty of Heaven, in order to bring salvation within their reach, was smitten, bruised, and afflicted. He became a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief. In the wilderness of temptation he resisted Satan, although the tempter was clothed with the livery of heaven. Christ, although brought to great physical suffering, refused to yield a single point, notwithstanding the most flattering inducements were presented to bribe and influence him to yield his integrity. All this honor, all these riches and glory, said the deceiver, will I give thee if thou wilt only acknowledge my claims.

Could we at this time have entered the heavenly courts, and seen with what intense interest the holy angels watched the conflict of their loved Commander with the fallen foe, we should see greater significance in this long fast of Christ than it is now possible for us, with our darkened senses, to comprehend. Christ, the Commander of Heaven, was emaciated by long fasting; and his human nature fainted when the conflict was ended. The Son of God appeared to be dying from hunger and the effects of his warfare with Satan. But angels lifted his fainting head, served him with nourishing food, and ministered unto him. Never will so severe a test be brought to bear upon man, as that which the Captain of his salvation endured before him.

There was great rejoicing and triumph in the heavenly courts that Satan, who had deceived even the heavenly angels, and drawn a third part of heaven into his rebellion, had been vanquished at every point by the Prince of Life. Hosannas rung through heaven that Christ had repulsed the fallen foe, and resisted every temptation upon the point of appetite, redeeming Adam’s disgraceful failure by his own triumph.

Christ has given us an example of temperance in his own life. Where so many professed Christians fail, and are led captive by appetite and inclination, the Saviour was firm. Oh! what salvation would there now be for the race if Christ had been as weak in moral power as man? No wonder that joy filled heaven as the fallen chief left the wilderness of temptation a conquered foe. Christ has power from his Father to give his divine grace and strength to man - making it possible for us, through his name, to overcome. There are but few professed followers of Christ who choose to engage with him in the work of resisting Satan’s temptations as he resisted and overcame.

Professed Christians who enjoy gatherings of gaiety, pleasure, and feasting, cannot appreciate the conflict of Christ in the wilderness. This example of their Lord in overcoming Satan is lost to them. This infinite victory which Christ achieved for them in the plan of salvation is meaningless. They have no special interest in the wonderful humiliation of our Saviour, and the anguish and sufferings he endured for sinful man, while Satan was pressing him with his manifold temptations. That scene of trial in the wilderness was the foundation of the plan of salvation, and gives to fallen man the key whereby he, in Christ’s name, may overcome.

Many professed Christians look upon this portion of the life of Christ as they would upon a common warfare between two kings, and as having no special bearing upon their own life and character. Therefore, the manner of warfare, and the wonderful victory gained, have but little interest for them. Their perceptive powers are blunted by Satan’s artifices, so that they cannot discern that he who afflicted Christ in the wilderness, determined to rob him of his integrity as the Son of the Infinite, is to be their own adversary to the end of time. Although he failed to overcome Christ, his power over man is not weakened. All are personally exposed to the temptations that Christ overcame; but strength is provided for them in the all-powerful name of the great Conqueror. And all must, for themselves, individually overcome. Many fall under the very same temptations wherewith Satan assailed Christ.

Although Christ gained a priceless victory in behalf of man in overcoming the temptations of Satan in the wilderness, this victory will not benefit man unless he also gains the victory on his own account.

Man now has the advantage over Adam in his warfare with Satan; for he has Adam’s experience in disobedience and his consequent fall to warn him to shun his example. Man also has Christ’s example in overcoming appetite and the manifold temptations of Satan, and in vanquishing the mighty foe upon every point, and coming off victor in every contest.

If man stumbles and falls under the temptations of Satan, he is without excuse; for he has the disobedience of Adam as a warning, and the life of the world’s Redeemer as an example of obedience and self-denial, and the promise of Christ that “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.”

The great trial of Christ in the wilderness on the point of appetite was to leave man an example of self-denial. This long fast was to convict men of the sinfulness of many things in which professed Christians indulge. The victory which Christ gained in the wilderness was to show man the sinfulness of the very things in which he takes such pleasure. The salvation of man was in the balance, and to be decided by the trial of Christ in the wilderness. If Christ was a victor on the point of appetite, then there was a chance for man to overcome. If Satan gained the victory through his subtlety, man was bound by the power of appetite in chains of indulgence which he could not have moral power to break. Christ’s humanity alone could never have endured this test; but his divine power, combined with humanity, gained in behalf of man an infinite victory. Our Representative in this victory raised humanity in the scale of moral value with God.

Every man born into the world with reasoning powers has the opportunity, to a great extent, of making himself whatever he chooses to be. The blessings of this life and the blessings of the immortal life, are within his reach. He may build up a character of mental and moral worth, gaining new strength at every step in life. He may advance daily in knowledge and wisdom, conscious of new delights as he progresses, adding virtue to virtue, and grace to grace.

His faculties will improve by use, and the more wisdom he gains, the more he will be able to acquire, and his intelligence, knowledge, and virtue will thus continually increase and develop into greater strength and beauty.

On the other hand, he may allow his powers to rust out for want of use, or be perverted through evil habits, lack of self-control or of moral and religious stamina. His course then tends downward; he is disobedient to the laws of God, and to the laws of health. Appetite conquers him; inclination carries him away. It is easier for him to stand still and be dragged backward by the powers of evil, which are always active, than to struggle against them, and go forward. Dissipation, disease, and death follow. This is the history of many lives that might have been useful in the cause of God and humanity. 

We are free moral agents. We may obey the law of God, and secure eternal gain and lead others into the path of right, or we may transgress the law of God, and bring the penalty of disobedience upon us. There is glory above us that we may reach; and there is an abyss of wretchedness below, into which we may plunge. It requires less exertion to consent to go backward and downward than to urge our way forward through every obstacle. Thus many go down through inaction, who might be bright and shining lights. –Mrs. E. G. White, in Health Reformer.

Jenny @ 11:01 pm
February 14, 1878 Battle Creek College part 2
Filed under: EG White Articles

Remarks by Mrs. E. G. White, at , June 26, 1877.
-
(Concluded.)

We would say to the who are soon to return to their homes, we hope they will make continual advancement in the , and in his fear. An that is obtained merely in is a very deficient education. An education in , a of God, combined with all the knowledge that you may obtain from will give you . As the students return to their homes, we hope they will carry with them; and that they will have the before them. “Whether therefore ye eat or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the of God.” Here is a which reaches deep beneath the surface, taking hold of the and actions of the entire man. He is required to be constantly guarded, a faithful sentinel over , prepared to meet and resist every thought and action which will dishonor his . A compliance with this injunction of the will bind and hold in restraint every , and will make an absolute necessity to the . , , , and everything which will strengthen and develop and will be . The combined with will give to all perfect and entire . Every believing mind will be filled with . The will be: I can do all things through which strengtheneth me. Such youth, and only such, can stand before the world with symmetrical characters.

prayed to God for . The Lord said, because he had not asked for or for , he should have not only the blessing of wisdom, but and also. One who has is prepared to make a right use of the talents and means which God has given him. All the he may possess will not lead him to forget . There is danger of some of these dear youth being , as was the who came to Jesus, and in all inquired: “ what shall I do to ?” Said : If thou wilt enter into life . Exultingly the young man replied: All these have I kept from my youth up, what lack I yet? How earnestly, and with what elation of soul he said this. But Jesus looked pityingly upon this deceived young man and said: “Yet lackest thou one thing; sell all that thou hast, and distribute to , and come follow me, and thou shalt have .” This unfolded to the deceived young man his supreme . His spoiled all his virtues. It was a fatal deficiency, for he turned away from Christ, from the , rather than to comply with the conditions.

We have hope that when you shall return to your homes and mingle in , and are surrounded with , when you shall meet with and , when is called for, when is required, that you will be connected with God, and maintain a of character; that you will be like the pure lily, only gathering to yourselves the good and refusing the bad. You can all do this if you will. Every one of you may have moral power; every one of you may have grace and strength to become victors on your own account, in the name of the One who has conquered for you, and has ascended up on high to represent your case to the Father. Man’s representative pleads in heaven in our behalf; and we want that the youth who have given their hearts to God will so live that Christ can freely present their cases before the Father. We hope that those who have just entered the school of Christ will continue to be learners. “If ye then be risen with Christ seek those things which are above where Christ sitteth at the right hand of God.” There are many who cease to be learners in Christ’s school after they have received the ordinance of baptism. They appear more like graduates. “Except ye be converted and become as little children ye shall not enter the kingdom of heaven.” How natural for many to love to teach, but who will not be taught. “Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein.” Who so easily taught as a child; who so willing and ready to believe? God looks with love upon the confiding simplicity of children. Duties in our homes, in the college, and in the church, may be regarded as drudgery; but in proportion as these duties are blended with the love of God they are made cheerful and pleasant. The simple faith and trusting confidence of the child is necessary to be possessed by the learner in the school of Christ.

After the baptism of Christ he bowed upon Jordan’s banks, and heaven never listened to such a prayer as he then and there uttered. And in answer to that prayer, the light and glory of God flashed forth from his throne and descended as a dove and rested upon him. Immediately from the Infinite One came a voice, saying: “This is my beloved Son.” Here, heaven was opened to man; earth was connected with heaven through our representative, and finite man with the Infinite God. Heaven was opened to you, dear youth; and you need not to feel that the heavens above you are brass. God testified to his Son in his own voice that he accepted him; and in accepting the representative of the race he signifies to man that he will accept him through his Son if we comply with the conditions laid down in his word. The steps requisite in conversion are repentance, faith and baptism. And then after these steps are taken, the life of prayer is essential to maintain the Christian life, and to seek those things which are above where Christ sitteth, you cannot stop at baptism and feel that you have graduated. Your Christian life is only entered upon, the formation of Christian character is yet before you, you have just entered the school of Christ, and need to continue to learn of him.

You are to continue to be instructed in the school of Christ, having the heart open to receive the heavenly knowledge that will be imparted unto you; and thus you will grow in grace and the knowledge of the truth. There is a final examination that is to take place in reference to your probationary time in this world which is of vital interest to every one of us. There will in that day be no indifferent spectators. Every one will have a part to act, and will have intense interest to pass that ordeal with heavenly honors. All will have an opportunity to educate themselves while in this world, that they may be fitted to stand the grand review which must shortly take place. If you make efforts in one term at our college, and through negligence on your part fail to stand the examining test, you may console yourselves with the hope to redeem your failure in the following term. But if in the vital interest of your soul’s salvation you neglect to learn the lessons necessary to stand the test of the great examination to come, there will be no second privilege and opportunity granted. It is now or never that you must perfect Christian character. There will be no following term that you may enter the school of Christ to redeem abused privileges and lost opportunities. It is of the highest importance that in the great examination to come you can stand in the merits of your heavenly Redeemer by having gained the victory in his name.

We have been having an exhibition of talent here today, but the grand review of character is to take place by and by. Jesus would have us learn in his school that we may become intellectual Christians. He would have us learn of him that we may grow in grace and the knowledge of the truth, that we may be qualified to talk intelligently upon the things of God, repeating the lessons of the cross of Christ. We have heard speeches from the stand today from you which have done credit to both students and teachers. We are anxious that those who are learning in the school of Christ should have willing hearts and ready tongues, that they may speak the praise of God, and tell, in their language and deportment, the advancement they have made in the divine life. You want to make your mark high, and progress every day. Every day you want to obtain knowledge how to successfully control self. You want to obtain knowledge how to gain new victories. The Christian warfare is a battle and a march. Take Christ with you in everything you do; take him with you at your homes, and wherever you go; and if Jesus is with you, if you have his presence and his love, you have a heavenly companion, a heavenly guest.

Think not that the Christian’s life is one that takes away from you all pleasure. It opens to us fountains of pleasures that it is impossible for us to measure. “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” Take away from me everything that this world can give, but do not take away my connection with Heaven. I love my Saviour; and I want every one of these youth to love him. I want you to prepare for the final examination, when every man shall be judged according to the deeds done in the body. Who will be acquitted in that day? To whom will it be said: “Well done, good and faithful servant?” Who in that day will hear the words: “Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world?” How many who are present on this occasion will listen to those words which are richer than any music that ever fell upon human ear? And who, then, will have the crown of glory placed upon their brow? Who will bear in their hand the palm branch of victory, and the harp of gold?

We want you to swell the triumph of “Worthy, worthy, worthy is the Lamb that was slain, and that lives again, a triumphant conqueror.” We want to see every one of you with your laurels of honor that you shall cast at the feet of your Redeemer; and then touch your golden harps, and fill all heaven with the melodious strains, and songs of praise to the Lamb. Talk not to me of the pleasures of earth. I have my eye fixed upon the immortal inheritance, and it has eclipsed all that is beautiful, all that is lovely, and all that is attractive in this world. I want heaven. I must have the eternal weight of glory. Will you strive with me to obtain heaven? Will you triumph with me in that day when God makes up his jewels? God grant that we may all be there; that every one of us may tread those streets that are paved with gold; that we may enter the pearly gates of the holy city, and that we may go no more out forever.

Jenny @ 12:04 pm
February 14, 1878 Battle Creek College part 2
Filed under: EG White Articles

Remarks by Mrs. E. G. White, at , June 26, 1877.
-
(Concluded.)

We would say to the who are soon to return to their homes, we hope they will make continual advancement in the , and in his fear. An that is obtained merely in is a very deficient education. An education in , a of God, combined with all the knowledge that you may obtain from will give you . As the students return to their homes, we hope they will carry with them; and that they will have the before them. “Whether therefore ye eat or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the of God.” Here is a which reaches deep beneath the surface, taking hold of the and actions of the entire man. He is required to be constantly guarded, a faithful sentinel over , prepared to meet and resist every thought and action which will dishonor his . A compliance with this injunction of the will bind and hold in restraint every , and will make an absolute necessity to the . , , , and everything which will strengthen and develop and will be . The combined with will give to all perfect and entire . Every believing mind will be filled with . The will be: I can do all things through which strengtheneth me. Such youth, and only such, can stand before the world with symmetrical characters.

prayed to God for . The Lord said, because he had not asked for or for , he should have not only the blessing of wisdom, but and also. One who has is prepared to make a right use of the talents and means which God has given him. All the he may possess will not lead him to forget . There is danger of some of these dear youth being , as was the who came to Jesus, and in all inquired: “ what shall I do to ?” Said : If thou wilt enter into life . Exultingly the young man replied: All these have I kept from my youth up, what lack I yet? How earnestly, and with what elation of soul he said this. But Jesus looked pityingly upon this deceived young man and said: “Yet lackest thou one thing; sell all that thou hast, and distribute to , and come follow me, and thou shalt have .” This unfolded to the deceived young man his supreme . His spoiled all his virtues. It was a fatal deficiency, for he turned away from Christ, from the , rather than to comply with the conditions.

We have hope that when you shall return to your homes and mingle in , and are surrounded with , when you shall meet with and , when is called for, when is required, that you will be connected with God, and maintain a of character; that you will be like the pure lily, only gathering to yourselves the good and refusing the bad. You can all do this if you will. Every one of you may have moral power; every one of you may have grace and strength to become victors on your own account, in the name of the One who has conquered for you, and has ascended up on high to represent your case to the Father. Man’s representative pleads in heaven in our behalf; and we want that the youth who have given their hearts to God will so live that Christ can freely present their cases before the Father. We hope that those who have just entered the school of Christ will continue to be learners. “If ye then be risen with Christ seek those things which are above where Christ sitteth at the right hand of God.” There are many who cease to be learners in Christ’s school after they have received the ordinance of baptism. They appear more like graduates. “Except ye be converted and become as little children ye shall not enter the kingdom of heaven.” How natural for many to love to teach, but who will not be taught. “Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein.” Who so easily taught as a child; who so willing and ready to believe? God looks with love upon the confiding simplicity of children. Duties in our homes, in the college, and in the church, may be regarded as drudgery; but in proportion as these duties are blended with the love of God they are made cheerful and pleasant. The simple faith and trusting confidence of the child is necessary to be possessed by the learner in the school of Christ.

After the baptism of Christ he bowed upon Jordan’s banks, and heaven never listened to such a prayer as he then and there uttered. And in answer to that prayer, the light and glory of God flashed forth from his throne and descended as a dove and rested upon him. Immediately from the Infinite One came a voice, saying: “This is my beloved Son.” Here, heaven was opened to man; earth was connected with heaven through our representative, and finite man with the Infinite God. Heaven was opened to you, dear youth; and you need not to feel that the heavens above you are brass. God testified to his Son in his own voice that he accepted him; and in accepting the representative of the race he signifies to man that he will accept him through his Son if we comply with the conditions laid down in his word. The steps requisite in conversion are repentance, faith and baptism. And then after these steps are taken, the life of prayer is essential to maintain the Christian life, and to seek those things which are above where Christ sitteth, you cannot stop at baptism and feel that you have graduated. Your Christian life is only entered upon, the formation of Christian character is yet before you, you have just entered the school of Christ, and need to continue to learn of him.

You are to continue to be instructed in the school of Christ, having the heart open to receive the heavenly knowledge that will be imparted unto you; and thus you will grow in grace and the knowledge of the truth. There is a final examination that is to take place in reference to your probationary time in this world which is of vital interest to every one of us. There will in that day be no indifferent spectators. Every one will have a part to act, and will have intense interest to pass that ordeal with heavenly honors. All will have an opportunity to educate themselves while in this world, that they may be fitted to stand the grand review which must shortly take place. If you make efforts in one term at our college, and through negligence on your part fail to stand the examining test, you may console yourselves with the hope to redeem your failure in the following term. But if in the vital interest of your soul’s salvation you neglect to learn the lessons necessary to stand the test of the great examination to come, there will be no second privilege and opportunity granted. It is now or never that you must perfect Christian character. There will be no following term that you may enter the school of Christ to redeem abused privileges and lost opportunities. It is of the highest importance that in the great examination to come you can stand in the merits of your heavenly Redeemer by having gained the victory in his name.

We have been having an exhibition of talent here today, but the grand review of character is to take place by and by. Jesus would have us learn in his school that we may become intellectual Christians. He would have us learn of him that we may grow in grace and the knowledge of the truth, that we may be qualified to talk intelligently upon the things of God, repeating the lessons of the cross of Christ. We have heard speeches from the stand today from you which have done credit to both students and teachers. We are anxious that those who are learning in the school of Christ should have willing hearts and ready tongues, that they may speak the praise of God, and tell, in their language and deportment, the advancement they have made in the divine life. You want to make your mark high, and progress every day. Every day you want to obtain knowledge how to successfully control self. You want to obtain knowledge how to gain new victories. The Christian warfare is a battle and a march. Take Christ with you in everything you do; take him with you at your homes, and wherever you go; and if Jesus is with you, if you have his presence and his love, you have a heavenly companion, a heavenly guest.

Think not that the Christian’s life is one that takes away from you all pleasure. It opens to us fountains of pleasures that it is impossible for us to measure. “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” Take away from me everything that this world can give, but do not take away my connection with Heaven. I love my Saviour; and I want every one of these youth to love him. I want you to prepare for the final examination, when every man shall be judged according to the deeds done in the body. Who will be acquitted in that day? To whom will it be said: “Well done, good and faithful servant?” Who in that day will hear the words: “Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world?” How many who are present on this occasion will listen to those words which are richer than any music that ever fell upon human ear? And who, then, will have the crown of glory placed upon their brow? Who will bear in their hand the palm branch of victory, and the harp of gold?

We want you to swell the triumph of “Worthy, worthy, worthy is the Lamb that was slain, and that lives again, a triumphant conqueror.” We want to see every one of you with your laurels of honor that you shall cast at the feet of your Redeemer; and then touch your golden harps, and fill all heaven with the melodious strains, and songs of praise to the Lamb. Talk not to me of the pleasures of earth. I have my eye fixed upon the immortal inheritance, and it has eclipsed all that is beautiful, all that is lovely, and all that is attractive in this world. I want heaven. I must have the eternal weight of glory. Will you strive with me to obtain heaven? Will you triumph with me in that day when God makes up his jewels? God grant that we may all be there; that every one of us may tread those streets that are paved with gold; that we may enter the pearly gates of the holy city, and that we may go no more out forever.

Jenny @ 3:21 pm