Give the Trumpet a Certain Sound

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December 6, 1892 Let the Trumpet Give a Certain Sound.


By Mrs. E. G. White.



     We are pressing on to the final conflict, and this is no time to compromise. It is no time to hide your colors. When the battle wages sore, let no one turn traitor. It is no time to lay down or conceal our weapons, and give Satan the advantage in the warfare. But unless you watch, and keep your garments unspotted from the world, you will not stand true to your Captain. It is no time for watchmen to slumber on the walls of Zion. Let them be wide-awake. Call to your fellow-watchmen, crying, "The morning cometh, and also the night." It is no time now to relax our efforts, to become tame and spiritless; no time to hide our light under a bushel, to speak smooth things, to prophesy deceit. Every power is to be employed for God. You are to maintain your allegiance, bearing testimony for God and for truth. Be not turned aside by any suggestion the world can make. We cannot afford to compromise. There is a living issue before us, of vital importance to the remnant people of God, to the very close of this earth's history; for eternal interests are involved. On the very eve of the crisis, it is no time to be found with an evil heart of unbelief, departing from the living God. {RH,December 6, 1892 par. 1}


     The original apostasy began in disbelief and denial of the truth; but if we would triumph, we must fix the eye of faith steadfastly upon Jesus, the Captain of our salvation. We are to follow the example of Christ, and in all that Jesus did on earth, he had an eye single to the glory of God. He says, "As the Father gave me commandment, even so I do." "This commandment have I received of my Father." In all he did he was working out the will of his Father, so that his life on earth was a manifestation of the divine perfection. Divinity and humanity were united in Christ, that he might reveal to us God's purpose, and bring man into close communion with himself. This union will enable us to overcome the enemy; for through faith in Christ we shall have divine power. The days will come (for the enemy is working to that end) in which the law of God will be made void. As those days approach, the loyal subjects of God must rise to the emergency, manifesting more fervent zeal, giving more positive and unflinching testimony. {RH, December 6, 1892par. 2}


     But while we are to speak as having authority, we should do nothing in a defiant spirit. If our hearts are fully surrendered to God, we shall unite meekness and love with truth and decision. We are "to be ready to every good work, to speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, showing all meekness unto all men." {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 3}


     It is time for God's people to take up the duties that lie next them, to be faithful in little things; for on the right performance of little things hang great results. Do not leave the work which needs to be done, because to your judgment it appears small and unimportant. Make up every waste place, repair the breaches as fast as they occur. Let no difference or dissension exist among the workers. Let all go to work to help some one who needs help. There is a cause for the great weakness in our churches, and that cause is hard to remove; for it is self. Trouble does not arise because men have too much will, but because they have too much self-will. The will should be wholly sanctified to God. The professed followers of Christ need to fall on the Rock and be broken; for in every one who enters the gates of the city of God, self must be crucified. This fierce spirit which rises up in the hearts of some in the church when everything does not go to please them, must be subdued; for it is not the Spirit of Christ. It is fully time that we return to our first love, and be at peace among ourselves. We must make it manifest that we are not only Bible readers, but Bible believers. If we are united to Christ, we shall be united to one another. Jesus says, "A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another." "We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let every one of us please his neighbor for his good to edification. For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me. . . . Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be like-minded one toward another according to Christ Jesus: that ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ." {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 4}


     Our numbers are increasing, our facilities are enlarging, and all this calls for union among the workers, for entire consecration and thorough devotion to the cause of God. There is no place in the work of God for half-hearted workers, for those who are neither cold nor hot. Jesus says, "I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth." Among those who are half-hearted are the class who pride themselves on their great caution in receiving "new light," as they term it. But their failure to receive the light is caused by their spiritual blindness; for they cannot discern the ways and works of God. Those who array themselves against the precious light of heaven, will accept messages that God has not sent, and will thus become dangerous to the cause of God; for they will set up false standards. {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 5}


     There are men in our cause who might be of great use if they would but learn of Christ, and go on from light to greater light; but because they will not, they are positive hindrances, forever questioning, wasting precious time in argument, and contributing nothing to the spiritual elevation of the church. They misdirect minds, and lead men to accept perilous suggestions. They cannot see afar off; they cannot discern the conclusion of the matter. Their moral force is squandered upon trifles; for they view an atom as a world, and a world as an atom. {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 6}


     Many have trusted and gloried in the wisdom of men far more than in Christ and in the precious sanctifying truth for this time. They need the heavenly anointing, that they may comprehend what is light and truth. They thank God that they are confined to no narrow groove, but they do not see the breadth and far-reaching extent of the principles of truth, and are not enlightened by the Spirit of God as to heaven's large liberality. They admire man-made theories, and walk in the sparks of their own kindling, diverging farther and farther from the genuine principles of Christian action ordained to make men wise unto salvation. They strive to extend the gospel, but separate from it the very marrow and life. They say, "Let the light shine," but cover it so that it shall not shine in clear rays on the very subjects that they need to understand. Some exhaust the fervor of their zeal on plans that cannot be carried out without peril to the church. {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 7}


     At this time the church should not be diverted from the main object of vital interest, to things that will not bring health and courage, faith and power. They must see, and by their actions testify, that the gospel is aggressive. {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 8}


     Watchmen on the walls of Zion are to be vigilant, and sleep not day nor night. But if they have not received the message from the lips of Christ, their trumpets will give an uncertain sound. Brethren, God calls upon you, both ministers and laymen, to listen to his voice speaking to you in his word. Let his truth be received into the heart, that you may be spiritualized by its living, sanctifying power. Then let the distinct message for this time be sent from watchman to watchman on the walls of Zion. {RH, December 6, 1892par. 9}


     This is a time of general departure from truth and righteousness, a time when we must build the old waste places, and with interested effort labor to raise up the foundation of many generations. {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 10}


     "Thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in. If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honorable; and shalt honor him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it." {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 11}


     "Hearken unto me, ye that know righteousness, the people in whose heart is my law; fear ye not the reproach of men, neither be ye afraid of their revilings. For the moth shall eat them up like a garment, and the worm shall eat them like wool: but my righteousness shall be forever, and my salvation from generation to generation. Awake, awake, put on strength, O arm of the Lord; awake, as in the ancient days, in the generations of old . . . . Art thou not it which hath dried the sea, the waters of the great deep; that hath made the depths of the sea a way for the ransomed to pass over? Therefore the redeemed of the Lord shall return, and come with singing unto Zion; and everlasting joy shall be upon their head; they shall obtain gladness and joy; and sorrow and mourning shall flee away. I, even I, am he that comforteth you: who art thou, that thou shouldest be afraid of a man that shall die, and of the son of man which shall be made as grass; and forgettest the Lord thy maker, that hath stretched forth the heavens, and laid the foundations of the earth; and hast feared continually every day because of the fury of the oppressor, as if he were ready to destroy? And where is the fury of the oppressor? The captive exile hasteneth that he may be loosed, and that he should not die in the pit, nor that his bread should fail. But I am the Lord thy God, that divided the sea, whose waves roared: the Lord of hosts is his name. And I have put my words in thy mouth, and I have covered thee in the shadow of mine hand, that I may plant the heavens, and lay the foundations of the earth, and say unto Zion, Thou art my people." {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 12}


     "For Zion's sake will I not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest, until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth. And the Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory: and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall name. Thou shalt also be a crown of glory in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of thy God. Thou shalt no more be termed Forsaken; neither shall thy land any more be termed Desolate: but thou shalt be called Hephzi-bah, and thy land Beulah: for the Lord delighteth in thee, and thy land shall be married." {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 13}


     While you hold the banner of truth firmly proclaiming the law of God, let every soul remember that the faith of Jesus is connected with the commandments of God. The third angel is represented as flying through the midst of heaven, crying with a loud voice, "Here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus." The first, second, and third angels' messages are all linked together. The evidences of the abiding, ever-living truth of these grand messages, that mean so much to us, that have awakened such intense opposition from the religious world, cannot be extinguished. Satan is constantly seeking to cast his hellish shadow about these messages, so that the remnant people of God shall not clearly discern their import, their time, and place; but they live, and are to exert their power upon our religious experience while time shall last. {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 14}


     The influence of these messages has been deepening and widening, setting in motion the springs of action in thousands of hearts, bringing into existence institutions of learning, publishing houses, and health institutions; all these are the instrumentalities of God to co-operate in the grand work represented by the first, second, third angels flying in the midst of heaven to warn the inhabitants of the world that Christ is coming again with power and great glory. The prophet says, "I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power: and the earth was lightened with glory. And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils." This is the same messages that was given by the second angel. Babylon is fallen, "because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication." What is that wine? --Her false doctrines. She has given to the world a false Sabbath instead of the Sabbath of the fourth commandment, and has repeated the falsehood that Satan first told to Eve in Eden,--the natural immortality of the soul. Many kindred errors she has spread far and wide, "teaching for doctrines the commandments of men." {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 15}


     When Jesus began his public ministry, he cleansed the temple from its sacrilegious profanation. Among the last acts of his ministry was the second cleansing of the temple. So in the last work for the warning of the world, two distinct calls are made to the churches. The second angel's message is, "Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication." And in the loud cry of the third angel's message a voice is heard from heaven saying, "Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities." {RH, December 6, 1892 par. 16}



January 10, 1888 The Faith That Will Stand the Test.


By Mrs. E. G. White.



     The time has fully come when darkness is called light, and light is called darkness. We are living in an age when sham liberality is extolled; when those who scatter falsehood, false doctrines, and soul-destroying heresies are received and exalted by society, and the most terrible deeds of iniquity are glossed over and excused on the plea of charity. Even the voices from the pulpits of our land are saying, "It shall be well with the transgressor." Sin is not dealt with as a thing of fearful consequence, destined to bring inevitable ruin upon those who persist in its indulgence. It is not pictured in its abhorrent character before the people of the world. Smooth things are prophesied by false teachers, and the multitudes are resting in their sin, unmindful of the solemn warnings and examples of the word of God. The time has come when we should "sigh and cry for all the abominations" that are done in the land. {RH,January 10, 1888 par. 1}


     While the law of God is being made void in our world, there is a decided testimony to be borne. The truth is to be presented in its native force and clearness, whether men will hear or whether they will forbear. This cannot be done without exciting opposition. Those who refuse to receive the love of the truth will not rest without attempting to retard its progress. They have been turned unto fables, and will unite with the great adversary of souls to bring the message of heaven into contempt. {RH, January 10, 1888 par. 2}


     The apostle Paul warns us that "some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils." This is what we may expect. Our greatest trials will come because of that class who have once advocated the truth, but who turn from it to the world, and trample it under their feet in hate and derision. God has a work for his faithful servants to do. The attacks of the enemy must be met with the truth of his word. Falsehood must be unmasked, its true character must be revealed, and the light of the law of Jehovah must shine forth into the moral darkness of the world. We are to present the claims of his word. We shall not be held guiltless if we neglect this solemn duty. But while we stand in defense of the truth, let us not stand in defense of self, and make a great ado because we are called to bear reproach and misrepresentation. Let us not pity ourselves, but be very jealous for the law of the Most High. {RH, January 10, 1888 par. 3}


     Says the apostle, "The time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables." On every side we see men easily led captive by the delusive imaginations of those who make void the word of God; but when the truth is brought before them, they are filled with impatience and anger. But the exhortation of the apostle to the servant of God is, "Watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry." In his day some left the cause of the Lord. He writes, "Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world;" and again, he says, "Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works: of whom be thou ware also; for he hath greatly withstood our words." {RH,January 10, 1888 par. 4}


     Prophets and apostles experienced similar trials of opposition and reproach, and even the spotless Lamb of God was tempted in all points like as we are. He bore the contradiction of sinners against himself. {RH, January 10, 1888 par. 5}


     Every warning for this time must be faithfully delivered; but "the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient; in meekness instructing those that oppose themselves." We must cherish carefully the words of our God lest we be contaminated by the deceptive workings of those who have left the faith. We are to resist their spirit and influence with the same weapon our Master used when assailed by the prince of darkness,--"It is written." We should learn to use the word of God skillfully. The exhortation is, "Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." There must be diligent work and earnest prayer and faith to meet the winding error of false teachers and seducers; for "in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, truce-breakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away." These words portray the character of the men the servants of God will have to meet. "False accusers," "despisers of those that are good," will attack those who are faithful to their God in this degenerate age. But the embassador of Heaven must manifest the spirit that was displayed in the Master. In humility and love he must labor for the salvation of men. {RH, January 10, 1888 par. 6}


     Paul continues concerning those who oppose the work of God, comparing them to the men who made war against the faithful in the time of ancient Israel. He says: "Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth; men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith. But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as theirs also was." We know that the time is coming when the folly of warring against God will be revealed. We can afford  to wait in calm patience and trust, no matter how much  maligned and despised; for "nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest," and those who honor God shall be honored by him in the presence of men and angels. We are to share in the sufferings of the reformers. It is written, "The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me." Christ understands our grief. Not one of us is called to bear the cross alone. The suffering Man of Calvary is touched with the feeling of our woes, and as he has suffered being tempted, he is able also to succor them that are in sorrow and trial for his sake. "Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned."{RH, January 10, 1888 par. 7}


     God has provided abundant means for successful warfare with principalities and powers and spiritual wickedness in high places; for "all Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." The Bible is the armory where we may equip for the struggle. Our loins must be girt about with truth. Our breastplate must be righteousness. The shield of faith must be in our hands, the helmet of salvation shine on our brows, and the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God, be wielded to cut our way through the ranks of our bitter foes. We must be ready, at the command of our Captain to follow where he may lead. We must be doers of his word, not deceiving our own selves. {RH, January 10, 1888 par. 8}


     If we look to self, and trust in self, we shall surely fall from our steadfastness. The terrible tempest that is gathering will sweep away our sandy foundation, and leave our house a wreck on the shores of time; but the house that is built upon the rock shall stand forever. We must be "kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation." The apostle spoke some plain words to his Hebrew brethren, that meet the condition of many of those who profess the truth for this time. "We have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing. [They were not quick to discern the things of the Spirit of God.] For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskillful in the word of righteousness; for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil." It is positively necessary for those who believe the truth, to be making continual advancement, growing up unto the full stature of men and women in Christ Jesus. There is no time for backsliding and indifference. Each one must have a living experience in the things of God. Have root in yourselves. Become grounded in the faith, so that having done all you may stand, with unwavering confidence in God, through the time that will try every man's work and character. Exercise your powers in spiritual things, till you can appreciate the deep things of God's word, and go on from strength to strength. {RH, January 10, 1888 par. 9}


     There are thousands who claim to have the light of truth who take no steps in advance. They have no living experience, notwithstanding they have had every advantage. They do not know what consecration means. Their devotions are formal and hollow, and there is no depth to their piety. The word of God offers spiritual liberty and enlightenment to those who seek for it earnestly. Those who accept the promises of God, and act on them with living faith, will have the light of heaven in their lives. They will drink of the fountain of life, and lead others to the waters that have refreshed their own souls. We must have that faith in God that takes him at his word. We can have no victory without cloudless confidence; for "without faith it is impossible to please" God. It is faith that connects us with the power of Heaven, and that brings us the strength for coping with the powers of darkness. "This is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith." "Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." In order to exercise intelligent faith we should study the word of God. The Bible, and the Bible alone, communicates a correct knowledge of the character of God and his will concerning us. The duty and the destiny of man are defined in its pages. The conditions on which we may hope for eternal life are explicitly stated, and the doom of those who neglect so great a salvation is foretold in the most forcible language. {RH, January 10, 1888 par. 10}


     Had the Bible been received as the voice of God to man, as the book of books, as the one infallible rule of faith and practice, we would not have seen the law of Heaven made void, and the swelling tide of iniquity devouring our land. {RH, January 10, 1888 par. 11}


     As men wander away from the truth into skepticism, everything becomes uncertain and unreal, No thorough conviction takes hold of the soul. No faith is exercised in the Scripture as the revelation of God to men. There is nothing authoritative in its commands, nothing terrifying in its warnings, nothing inspiring in its promises. To the skeptic it is meaningless and contradictory. {RH, January 10, 1888 par. 12}


     There are many among us who are not cultivating faith. They have a vacillating experience. They are "like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed." Sometimes they seem strong in faith, then a blast of unbelief sweeps over them, and they are filled with gloom and doubt. They make no decided efforts to recover themselves out of the snare of the Devil, but are taken captive by him at his will. There are others who, when assailed by temptations of unbelief, flee to the word of God and to earnest prayer, and they are not left to the power of the enemy. The day is coming that will reveal whether we are building on the solid rock or the sliding sand.{RH, January 10, 1888 par. 13}


     If men could realize the blighting influence of doubt upon their minds, if they could but see into the future, they would realize the imperative need of cultivating firm trust in God and implicit confidence in his promises. They would not sow one grain of unbelief; for every single grain blossoms into fruit. Satan is a living, active agent. It is his business to encourage skepticism, and every word of doubt is carefully nourished by the adversary of souls. While men sleep in indifference, suggestions that weaken faith are insinuated into the heart. Influences that confuse the perception of truth are brought to bear upon the life. In every way possible, Satan strives to turn souls from the narrow path that leads to heaven; and because men love darkness they follow the voice of strangers, and reject the call of the Good Shepherd who gave his life for the sheep. The plain, authoritative "Thus saith the Lord," is refused for some winding sophistry of error. Infidelity has increased in proportion as men have questioned the word and requirements of their Maker. They have taken up the work of cheapening character, and lessening faith in the inspiration of the Bible. Men claiming great wisdom have presumed to criticise and cut and cull the words of the living God, and have started questions to make shipwreck of the happiness of their fellow-men and to ruin their hopes of heaven. This is a work that is pleasing to the enemy of all righteousness. The arguments that men bring against the Bible are the result of the counsels of the evil one. The door of their minds was opened to his suggestions, and the more they drifted into error, the greater grew their desire to draw other souls into the same channel of darkness.{RH, January 10, 1888 par. 14}


     Many claim to believe the Bible, and their names are enrolled on the church records, who are among the most influential agents of Satan. The work they are doing they will not consider an honor to them in the day of Judgment. It will then be seen that every effort that weakened faith was made at a terrible loss. The tremendous price that must be paid will sink them into everlasting shame and ruin. The only safety is in rejecting instantly every suggestion of unbelief. Do not open your mind to entertain doubts, for even an instant; bid them a decided refusal as they come to you for admission. Fasten the mind upon the promises of God. Talk of them, rejoice in them; and the peace of God will rule in your hearts. {RH, January 10, 1888 par. 15}


     The fruits of doubt are not desirable. Oh! look around you and see what havoc has been wrought by the machinations of the evil one. Error and falsehood and heresy have held high carnival in the deceived hearts of men. From century to century the adversary has repeated his experiments with growing success; for in spite of the sad records of lives that have gone out in darkness, as moths fly to the fire, so men rush on into the ruinous deceptions that he has prepared to entrap them. If you desire salvation, I entreat you to shun his insinuations concerning the truth of God's word. Come to the "sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place." If that is not authoritative, what is? If the word of the Lord of heaven and earth is not solid rock upon which to build, then it is in vain to look for a sure foundation. "Heaven and earth shall pass away," but "the word of the Lord endureth forever;" and unwavering faith in his word is the only faith that will endure through the perils of the last days.                                                                

{RH, January 10, 1888 par. 16}



December 28, 1897 "He Was Wounded for Our Transgressions."


Mrs. E. G. White.



     "Now the chief priests, and elders, and all the council, sought false witness against Jesus, to put him to death; but found none: yea, though many false witnesses came, yet found they none. At the last came two false witnesses, and said, This fellow said, I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to build it in three days." This was the only charge that could be brought against Christ. But these words had been misstated and misapplied. Christ had said, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. . . . But he spake of the temple of his body." {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 1}


     Priests and rulers, with many others, taunted him with this false statement. While he hung upon the cross, it was repeated in mockery by the scribes and Pharisees, and echoed by the multitude. "They that passed by reviled him, wagging their heads, and saying, Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save thyself." But though misstated, Christ's words were being fulfilled. Publicity was given to them, and they were made more impressive by the proclamations of his enemies. {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 2}


     "Likewise also the chief priests mocking him, with the scribes and elders, said, He saved others; himself be cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him." Would they have believed on him had he come down? -- No. In the resurrection of Lazarus a convincing proof had been given of Christ's divinity. It was not evidence that the priests and rulers needed. This they had; but in spite of it, they sought for false witnesses, that they might mislead the minds of the people, and prejudice them against the truth. {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 3}


     In the parable of the rich man and Lazarus a representation is given of those who refuse light. While the rich man was suffering the punishment of his sins, he asked that Lazarus might be sent to warn his brethren, lest they also share his fate. Abraham is represented as saying to him: "They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them. And he said, Nay, father Abraham; but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent. And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead." Yet to the Jews one had come who had been raised from the dead. Among them was Lazarus, who had lain four days in the grave, but who was now a living witness of the power of Christ. But in spite of this, the priests not only plotted to put Christ to death, but Lazarus also; for he was likely to be an obstacle in the way of killing Christ. {RH,December 28, 1897 par. 4}


     Those who placed Christ before the world, hanging on the cross between two thieves, bruised and wounded, bore a testimony to his work. Many heard the words of mockery addressed to him as he hung on the cross; for they were spoken in no whispered tones. Thus a testimony to Christ's claims was borne in the hearing of thousands. Many minds entered on a track of thought that increased in intensity and earnestness as they searched the Scriptures for themselves. The conviction forced itself upon their minds that Jesus was the Messiah. {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 5}


     Those who in derision uttered the words, "He trusted in God; let him deliver him now if he will have him: for he said, I am the Son of God," little thought that their testimony would sound down the ages. But although spoken in mockery, never were words more true. They led men to search the Scriptures for themselves. Wise men heard, searched, pondered, and prayed. There were those who never rested until, by searching the Scriptures and comparing passage with passage, they saw the meaning of Christ's mission. They saw that free forgiveness was provided by him whose tender mercy embraces the whole world. They read the prophecies regarding Christ, and the promises so full and free, pointing to a fountain opened for Judah and Jerusalem. Hope sprang up in their hearts as they read the words:-- {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 6}


     "For Zion's sake will I not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest, until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth. And the Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory: and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall name. Thou shalt also be a crown of glory in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of thy God. Thou shalt no more be termed Forsaken; neither shall thy land be any more termed Desolate: but thou shalt be called, Hephzibah, and thy land Beulah: for the Lord delighteth in thee, and thy land shall be married. . . . Go through, go through the gates; prepare ye the way of the people; cast up, cast up the highway; gather out the stones; lift up a standard for the people. Behold, the Lord hath proclaimed unto the end of the world, Say ye to the daughter Zion, Behold, thy salvation cometh; behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him." {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 7}


     Never before was there such a general knowledge of Jesus as when he hung upon the cross. He was lifted up from the earth, to draw all unto him. Into the hearts of many who beheld the crucifixion scene, and who heard Christ's words, was the light of truth to shine. With John they would proclaim, "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." Truth is truth, and will remain truth, and in the end will triumph gloriously. The lamp of life is trimmed by the hand that lighted it. The Jewish leaders sought to remove it from the earth, but it shone on, and irradiated the world. Christ rose from the grave, and over the rent sepulcher of Joseph he proclaimed, "I am the resurrection and the life." Men in this age will repeat the history of the past. By their falsehoods they think that they can quench the light of the world, but their efforts only make the light shine brighter. {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 8}


     "Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene." As Christ's mother stood by the cross upon which he hung, she realized the truth of the words spoken by Simeon, when he took the infant Saviour in his arms and blessed him. "Mine eyes have seen thy salvation," he said, "which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel. And Joseph and his mother marveled at those things which were spoken of him. And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; (yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also), that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed." {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 9}


     That time had come. The hearts of the persecutors, the revilers, the murderers, were indeed revealed. Attributes which form character were developed. Unbelieving Israel took sides with the first great apostate. {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 10}


     Christ, bearing the sin of the world, seemed to be deserted; but he was not wholly left alone. John stood close by the cross. Mary had fainted in her anguish, and John had taken her to his house, away from the harrowing scene. But he saw that the end was near, and he brought her again to the cross. Even in his dying hour, Christ remembered his mother. He saw her distress, and he said to her, "Woman, behold thy son! Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home." This thoughtful care lifted a weight from Mary's mind; she would no longer be obliged to choose her own home, and run the risk of offending her relatives; for Christ's wish was law. Christ knew what she most needed,--the tender sympathy of one who loved her because she loved Jesus. {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 11}


     "Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour." Human passions were raging at the foot of the cross when the earth was bereft of the light of the sun. The Sun of Righteousness was withdrawing his light from the world, and nature sympathized with her dying Author. A great darkness clothed the earth as with sackcloth of hair, and enshrouded the cross. It was as if the sun in its noonday splendor had been blotted out. Thus was represented the night of woe that was settling down on the Jewish nation. {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 12}


     "And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" These words would not be misunderstood, but priests and rulers interpreted them to suit their own understanding. With bitter contempt and scorn, they said, "This man calleth for Elias." Jesus said, "I thirst." These words, which should have awakened compassion in every heart, were held up to ridicule by the priests, in whose hearts humanity was eclipsed by satanic malignity. One of the hardened Roman soldiers, touched with pity as he looked at the parched lips, took a stalk of hyssop, and dipping it in a vessel of vinegar, lifted it to the Saviour's lips. But from the mockers came the words, "Let be, let us see whether Elias will come to save him." {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 13}


     This scene was transacted in the sight of heaven and earth. Angels beheld the pitiless scorn and contempt shown to Jesus by those who should have acknowledged him as the Messiah. To this length they were led when unrestrained by the Lord of heaven. So it is with all religious zealots who separate from heavenly influences. {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 14}


     Again came the cry, as of one in mortal agony, "It is finished." "Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost." Christ, the Majesty of heaven, the King of glory, was dead. The Jewish leaders had crucified the Son of God, the long-expected Messiah, him (so the people had hoped) who was to bring about so many reforms. They refused the only One who could save them from national ruin. {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 15}


     "And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent." Those who had induced the people to release Barabbas and crucify Christ, now trembled with terror. They were conscious of the wicked deed they had done. They realized that they had shed the blood of the Son of God. This blood they had invoked on themselves, saying, "His blood be on us, and on our children." Christ had prayed, "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do." But they made this prayer an impossibility; for they would not be convicted, they would not repent and be converted. {RH,December 28, 1897 par. 16}


     Christ has said, "If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you." There is no greater evidence that Satan is working than that those who profess to be sanctified to God's service persecute their fellow beings because they do not believe the same doctrine that they themselves believe. These will rush with fury against God's people, stating as true that which they know to be untrue. Thus they show that they are inspired by him who is an accuser of the brethren, and a murderer of the saints of God. But if God permits tyrants to do with us as the priests did with his Son, shall we give up our faith, and go back to perdition? It is not because God does not care for us that he permits these things to be; for he declares, "Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints." {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 17}


     With Satan at their head to imbue them with his spirit, men may afflict God's people, they may cause pain to the body, they may take away their temporal life; but they cannot touch the life that is hid with Christ. We are not our own. Soul and body, we have been bought with the price paid on the cross of Calvary; and we are to remember that we are in the hands of him who created us. Whatever Satan may inspire evil men to do, we are to rest in the assurance that we are under God's charge, and that by his Spirit he will strengthen us to endure. "He shall deliver the needy when he crieth; the poor also, and him that hath no helper. He shall spare the poor and needy, and shall save the souls of the needy. He shall redeem their soul from deceit and violence: and precious shall their blood be in his sight." {RH, December 28, 1897 par. 18}


     The time is soon to come when the Lord will say, "Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast. For, behold, the Lord cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain." Those who love God need not be surprised if those who claim to be Christians are filled with hatred because they cannot force the consciences of God's people. Not long hence they will stand before the Judge of all the earth, to render an account for the pain they have caused to the bodies and souls of God's heritage. They may indulge in false accusations now, they may deride those whom God has appointed to do his work, they may consign his believing ones to prison, to the chain-gang, to banishment, to death; but for every pang of anguish, every tear shed, they must answer. For every drop of blood drawn forth by torture, for all they have burned with fire, they will receive punishment. God will reward them double for their sins. They have drunk the blood of the saints, and have become intoxicated with exultation. God says to his ministers of judgment: "Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double. How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow. Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her."                                              

{RH, December 28, 1897 par. 19}