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“Oh, the unspeakable greatness of that exchange,—the Sinless One is condemned, and he who is guilty goes free; the Blessing bears the curse, and the cursed is brought into blessing; the Life dies, and the dead live; the Glory is whelmed in darkness, and he who knew nothing but confusion of face is clothed with glory.” Trailady

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A person God turned around many times.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

My comment for a beautiful hymn, How Tedious and Tasteless the Hours

How tedious and tasteless the hours
When Jesus no longer I see!
Sweet prospects, sweet birds and sweet flow’rs,
Have all lost their sweetness to me.
The midsummer sun shines but dim,
The fields strive in vain to look gay;
But when I am happy in Him
December’s as pleasant as May.
hymnal.net/en/hymn/h/529
 
“Beautiful testimonies to the power that our loving Saviour has upon the heart made in the image of God. Jesus met all the needs of the people in the long ago, and continues to meet our needs today as we think of Him. He is the one who makes the living word so lively and quickening. This song came to my mind the other day as I was contemplating a very tedious job I knew was coming. But, I only remembered the title of the hymn and forgot that the real tedium comes from losing sight of Jesus. Everything else is doable with Him. With our Shepherd who carries His lambs in His arms we might be cast down but not destroyed, persecuted but not forsaken, troubled on every side but not distressed. No other religion offers the help that the Lord gives to the creatures that came from His hand. He knows what we need--love, tough and soft. That’s what Jesus brought back to the world. We love Him because He first loved us--to the end.”
 
As I was contemplating manually piecing together ten thousand separate lines of text into one Word document, the title to this hymn came to my mind. How tedious and tasteless the hours would be the project. I couldn’t remember the actual words of the song, so I googled them. I was reminded that the song was about when Jesus no longer I see! And very beautiful were the comments on the website left by others who had remembered the hymn and had looked it up. So, I left the above comment.
 
While searching for the lyrics I also ran across the song sung by Cynthia Clawson. Her voice and demeanor were a true testament to the grace of Jesus, without whom life is very tedious and tasteless. Please hear her at: mp3tunes.mobi/download?v=rr-yT69NxWM

I am thankful to the Lord for keeping in people like Cynthia Clawson a remnant to represent Himself because His work on their heart keeps them in His way, truth, and life. Even if it is a very small minority within Protestantism whose experience has more than just emotion and imagined faith, that very small remnant will be firstfruits who lead many others to hold on to the Law of God through the faith of Jesus during the coming dark days.
 
“Except the LORD of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah” (Isa. 1:9). “For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and His glory shall be seen upon thee.” (Isa. 60:2).

As it was in the days of yore it will be again. “The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.” (Ecc. 1:9).
 
“There arose in the eleventh century a Pope of vast capacity, of inflexible
resolution, and towering pride, Gregory VII -Hildebrand. He put before the world, with a
precision, a boldness, and an argumentative force, never till then brought to its support,
the claim to be the Vicar of Christ. This was the foundation-stone on which he rested his
scheme of pontificial jurisdiction and grandeur. As Christ’s Vicar, he claimed to surpass
all earthly monarchs in glory and power, as far as the sun surpasses the moon in
brightness. He claimed, in short, to be God upon the earth. There followed a series of
popes who struggled through two dreadful centuries of war and bloodshed to convert
Gregory’s theory into fact. The struggle was successful in the end: the mitre triumphed
over the empire. The scheme of Gregory VII, in all its amplitude of jurisdiction and
magnificence—and, we may add, in all its amplitude of despotism and blasphemy—was
exhibited to the world in the person and reign of Innocent III, in the thirteenth century.
The history of the world does not show another achievement of equal magnitude. The
glory of the Pharaohs; the state and power of the Kings of Babylon; the victories and
magnificence of the Caesars, all pale before this great conquest of the Popes. Now had
come the noon of the Papacy; but, as we have remarked elsewhere, the noon of the
Popedom was the midnight of the world.” historicism.net/readingmaterials/thepapacy.pdf

“But 'the noon of the papacy was the midnight of the world.'--J. A. Wylie, The History of Protestantism, b. 1, ch. 4. The Holy Scriptures were almost unknown, not only to the people, but to the priests. Like the Pharisees of old, the papal leaders hated the light which would reveal their sins. God's law, the standard of righteousness, having been removed, they exercised power without limit, and practiced vice without restraint. Fraud, avarice, and profligacy prevailed. Men shrank from no crime by which they could gain wealth or position. The palaces of popes and prelates were scenes of the vilest debauchery. Some of the reigning pontiffs were guilty of crimes so revolting that secular rulers endeavored to depose these dignitaries of the church as monsters too vile to be tolerated. For centuries Europe had made no progress in learning, arts, or civilization. A moral and intellectual paralysis had fallen upon Christendom.” Great Controversy, p. 60.

By the birth of Protestantism and the Protestant nation of America, the God of Abraham, Moses, David, and the apostles saved the world from papal despotism and persecution. The menacing papacy, during the Dark Ages, had conquered the faith of the city of God on Earth, yet had sought in vain to take the heavenly temple mount in the true worshipers. In Protestant America, liberty in Protestantism and Republicanism prevailed.

But Protestantism and Adventism in the world, especially in Protestant America, have been unfaithful to the heavenly trust given them, and now we are seeing the fall of those two holy witnesses in Revelation 11 and the restoration of medieval popedom. The darkness will overtake this old world. It will overtake Protestantism, Adventism, and each of us individually. The Sun of righteousness is getting darker even now, though we have yet to experience the midnight. Satan is loosed as never before, and he is fighting his way to regain control of a world that Providence had once delivered from his tyranny and totalitarianism.
 
“Behold, the noise of the bruit is come, and a great commotion out of the north country, to make the [churches of Protestantism] desolate, and a den of dragons.” (Jer. 10:22). “Behold the mounts, they are come unto the [Advent movement] to take it; and [the denomination] is given into the hand of the Chaldeans, that fight against it, because of the sword, and of the famine, and of the pestilence: and what Thou hast spoken is come to pass; and, behold, Thou seest it.” (Jer. 32:24).
 
“Then shalt thou say unto them, Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will fill all the inhabitants of this land, even the kings that sit upon David’s throne, and the priests, and the prophets, and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, with drunkenness.
And I will dash them one against another, even the fathers and the sons together, saith the LORD: I will not pity, nor spare, nor have mercy, but destroy them.
Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud: for the LORD hath spoken.
Give glory to the LORD your God, before He cause darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and, while ye look for light, He turn it into the shadow of death, and make it gross darkness.
But if ye will not hear it, my soul shall weep in secret places for your pride; and mine eye shall weep sore, and run down with tears, because the LORD’s flock is carried away captive.
Say unto the king and to the queen, Humble yourselves, sit down: for your principalities shall come down, even the crown of your glory.
The cities of the south shall be shut up, and none shall open them: Judah shall be carried away captive all of it, it shall be wholly carried away captive.
Lift up your eyes, and behold them that come from the north: where is the flock that was given thee, thy beautiful flock?
What wilt thou say when He shall punish thee? for thou hast taught them to be captains, and as chief over thee: shall not sorrows take thee, as a woman in travail?
And if thou say in thine heart, Wherefore come these things upon me? For the greatness of thine iniquity are thy skirts discovered, and thy heels made bare.” (Jer. 13:13-22). Protestantism and Adventism have not strived to glorify their God who gave them this land flowing with milk and honey as a refuge from papal persecution. Yet, they dare to claim that this land and the prosperity which God gave them is their entitlement!
 
The houses of ancient Israel and Judah refused the prophets sent to them, a constant revulsion which took them to their final overdose of occult Ashtoreth and Baal, and each house to their final demise. Identically the same, Protestantism and Adventism wouldn’t listen to Ellen White, their last day prophet, to sanctify the Law of God in their hearts and lives; and their disobedience has finally brought them to the pinnacle of apostasy—seeking hydration at the broken cistern of the doting and pitying wine of Spiritual Formation. Therefore, the Lord is giving them over to their old, merciless nemesis. Don’t we hear their hammers knocking down our old Bill of Rights, sawing up the original Constitution, and building new structures for our punishment?
 
But, the power of God unto salvation is as real today in the demonstration of the lives and firm witnesses of the children of God, like that of Cynthia Clawson, which encourages the rest of us. We can know that Protestantism—superadded with the end-time message of Judgment Day through Adventism—is a ship that will go through to the end.
 
“Shortly before I sent out the testimonies regarding the efforts of the enemy to undermine the foundation of our faith through the dissemination of seductive theories, I had read an incident about a ship in a fog meeting an iceberg. For several nights I slept but little. I seemed to be bowed down as a cart beneath sheaves. One night a scene was clearly presented before me. A vessel was upon the waters, in a heavy fog. Suddenly the lookout cried, ‘Iceberg just ahead!’ There, towering high above the ship, was a gigantic iceberg. An authoritative voice cried out, ‘Meet it!’ There was not a moment’s hesitation. It was a time for instant action. The engineer put on full steam, and the man at the wheel steered the ship straight into the iceberg. With a crash she struck the ice. There was a fearful shock, and the iceberg broke into many pieces, falling with a noise like thunder to the deck. The passengers were violently shaken by the force of the collisions, but no lives were lost. The vessel was injured, but not beyond repair. She rebounded from the contact, trembling from stem to stern, like a living creature. Then she moved forward on her way.” Selected Messages, bk. 1, p. 205.
 
The dual Reformation/Second Advent message of righteousness by faith by the Saviour and by final judgment will meet the iceberg that comes in the midnight. That eventual collision will take all the trust in God and the previous possession of the faith of Jesus that the 144,000 can muster. But, those Cynthia Clawson Protestant-Adventist elites will then have a song that no one else can sing or ever has been sung. The deepest midnight of the world will play a central part in the cause of their glory. How horrific and anxious the hours when Jesus no longer they see.
 
Let’s remain in the ship and let’s disdain all the worldly and ecclesiastical ghost ships that Satan has constructed, floating adrift out there. Spiritual Formation and celebration false worship are nothing more than the Baal Peor end of our wilderness wandering. Repeated again will be the messages of the Protestant Reformers, of the Wesleys, of William Miller, Ellen White, of Morris Venden, and of everyone who has held on to faith in Jesus. Their testimony will be the message of the Latter Rain. The former messages will again be the present truth message when the Spirit of Jesus will come close to His people who are praying in the dark.
 
Stay the course. Full steam ahead! Ahead flank! Let us gather strength and momentum as we meet the looming iceberg! Join with the great cloud of witnesses, all of whom have had to face tribulation. Say with them, “Who art thou, O great mountain? before [Jesus] thou shalt become a plain: and [He] shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings..., Grace, grace unto it.” (Zech. 4:7). Despite their spitting blasphemies, run at the Goliaths, instead of away from them. They will disappear and become a plain.
 
Only the sealing can produce this kind of staunch fidelity to the God of truth. The word of God sealed in us! No more fearful Peters as the truth is sealed in our hearts and intellects. Despite our setbacks, with repentance the truth is being driven into us, and so deeply rooted that nothing can ever again drive it out.
 
Very close will Jesus be, who tasted damnation for every man, to “deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” (Heb. 2:15). When one saint courageously falls in the great time of trouble, another will step up to the helm and continue to drive the final movement forward. Jesus will be all that they see. Bearing His cross will be all that they love.
 
So, let us meet the towering berg of Babel. Let us let Babylon’s regrowth edify us instead of mortify us, and let it build our faith in the truth. Let us gather warmth from this world’s coming ice age, the cold giving us a need for Jesus’ love like nothing else could give the need. How tedious and tasteless the days until Jesus we see in the clouds of heaven! The beauty of the Reformation and the power of the “time of trouble such as never was” will give us hope and glory like the world has never seen.

“Being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ; by whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; and patience, experience; and experience, hope: and hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.” (Rom. 5:1-5).

“Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee.” (Isa. 60:1).
 
Meet it!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Spirituality

“And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while He talked with us by the way, and while He opened to us the scriptures?” (Luke 24:32).
 
There is only one way to be spiritual—that is to be humbled into the dust.
“Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift you up.” (Jas. 4:10). We cannot humble ourselves. All we can do is accept the invitation from the Lord to come unto Him and rest. We cannot humble ourselves, but we can come to Someone who will do what we cannot do for ourselves. He will humble us. Humiliation is the essence of spirituality. Humbled, we are at rest.
 
Many people today talk about being spiritual. The New Age Christianity is about spirituality. But, it denies the power thereof—it refuses the power of humiliation. It denies the Law of God which rebukes iniquity and transgression and sin—the whole gamut. The New Age will not be reproved and corrected and humbled. Rejection of reproof is the essence of the great controversy with Lucifer and it is the foundation of Babylon.
 
“And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen… 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.” (Rev. 18:2,7).
 
The church of Babylon has determined in her heart to never be humbled or to know repentance. Such is the condition of every human heart in today’s world population of 7 billion. We don’t like to be humbled. Being humbled is very politically incorrect. To hurt self-esteem is very politically incorrect. And it is also ecclesiastically incorrect—even in the church of God being humbled is unacceptable, which is why the pulpits of today do not do it.
 
“Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
For 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.
But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.” (2Tim. 4:2-5).
 
We want to be spiritual, but without going through the strait gate of God’s humiliation. The Spirit of truth speaks out against sin; and the essence of sin is pride. The proud, self-sufficient heart plagues humanity. The Spirit of God must humble the soul before that soul can be settled and happy. Without His rightful humiliation, we have no joy or peace with Him.
 
When we were children, didn’t our parents humble us with a spanking? We were put in our place. But, at that age, we were more innocent. We weren’t sinless or we would never have allowed the idea that self must have its own way. But, God created us to love, and we loved our parents and we knew our parents loved us. So we could accept the blow to our pride when we got too big for our britches. Then, after the spanking, and after the pain subsided, we went back to loving and being nice.
 
“We have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?” (Heb. 12:9).
 
But, with age grew a more deeply settled preservation of self. Seeds of pride that we were born with, and which our parents noticed, were undeveloped and trainable like a sapling can be bent, and we reaped the rewards of correction, training, goodness, and happiness. But, over time other seeds of pride grew up that our parents didn’t see. Its impossible for parents to keep up with the plague of pride that explodes from every soul born into our sinful human race. That job can only be handled by the almighty God, but we are all alienated from Him. So, the perfuse weeds of pride overtook the garden of our hearts and minds.
 
Only One who came forth into this world from a human womb had His fallen nature constantly challenged and the seeds of self willingly destroyed. That was the Son of God, born of a woman, and born under the curse of the Law. Jesus was the spotless lamb of God from the time of conception. He was sinless not because of His mother, but because of His Father. Through His Father He was born with the divine nature, a nature that hated pride and sin.
 
Jesus had genuine spirituality from the point of conception onward. John and the prophets had genuine spirituality from the time of birth, but they were conceived in sin and forever were sinners. But their sinfulness was covered by the ministry of Him who  perfectly represented the Almighty, and who had His own divine nature to give His servants, the prophets.
 
The prophets weren’t perfect because they had perfection innately, naturally. They had the divine nature as a gift from Jesus. That which permitted the prophets to speak for God, the divine nature, continually kept them humbled. And the words of truth that they continually heard from the burdened heart of Jesus kept their fallen nature from rising up and controlling them. Thus, Satan was kept away from them and his temptations had no effect on the prophets and kings, and the patriarchs and apostles. Self was kept at bay, so long as they accepted the word of God’s holiness, and loved it. As Jeremiah said,
 
“The word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.” (Jer. 1:4,15). But, that pure spirit was a gift without which Jeremiah would have been as depraved as the rest of the people. And he stayed saved by returning to the word of the Lord and walking in communion with Him.
 
“Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by Thy name, O LORD God of hosts.” (Jer. 15:16). “It is of the LORDs mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is Thy faithfulness.” (Lam. 3:22,23). He was converted before he was born, and loved the words of the holy God. But, those words were high as heaven, and Jeremiah had to admit his unworthiness. Every day he had to bow before the infinitely high standard and “[submit]…unto the righteousness of God.” (Rom. 10:3). Jeremiah had to be reconverted every day to “the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning [him].” (1Thess. 5:18).

Jesus alone needed no reconversion every day, because He never left His Father. All He needed was a renewal of His already perfect Spirit which He never lost day by day or night by night. But, no one other than Jesus is holy so that renewal is all that he needs. We all need the daily regeneration, the humbling, repentance, and reconversion in order to have the Spirit of Christ restored to us. “According to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost.” (Tit. 3:5). The Spirit of God can be renewed every morning, but only if we are humbled again every morning as we stand before the powerful word of God and let it disturb our soul and resurrect it from the dead, morning by morning and all through the day.
 
Isaiah speaks of the same requirement of a prophet that began for him at a later age in life.
 
“Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts. Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar: and he laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged.” (Isa. 6:5-7).
 
But, one anointing was not enough.
 
“The Lord GOD hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: He wakeneth morning by morning, He wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned. The Lord GOD hath opened mine ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back.” (Isa. 50:4,5).
 
When we are freed from self’s love of self-exaltation, self-centeredness, self-indulgence, self-preservation, etc. then we are the happiest that we can ever be. We can be like Jesus who never once exalted self or served self. “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 neighbour for his good to edification. For even Christ pleased not Himself.” (Rom. 15:1-3).
 
And there has not been a man since Adam left the garden who was happier than the Son of God. Jesus under the curse of the Law was even happier than Adam in the garden. Adam’s divine nature was lesser and weaker than Christ’s, which caused His virtue to bring the dead souls of the people to life. “And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.” (1Cor. 15:45).
 
We see how Jesus stood head and shoulders above the hosts of heaven in His humble happiness. 
“Thou art fairer than the children of men:
grace is poured into Thy lips: therefore God hath blessed Thee for ever.
Gird Thy sword upon Thy thigh, O most mighty, with Thy glory and Thy majesty.
And in Thy majesty ride prosperously because of truth and meekness and righteousness; and Thy right hand shall teach Thee terrible things.
Thine arrows are sharp in the heart of the Kings enemies; whereby the people fall under Thee.
Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of Thy kingdom is a right sceptre.
Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, Thy God, hath anointed Thee with the oil of gladness above Thy fellows.” (Ps. 45:2-7).
 
He was happier than the highest angel because, like His Father, He was more empty of self than anyone from intelligent creation. Michael was His name, Mikha “who is like”, and El “God”. “Who is like God” was just like His Father.
 
“Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He seeth the Father do: for what things soever He doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise. For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth Him all things that Himself doeth: and He will shew Him greater works than these, that ye may marvel. For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom He will.” (John 5:19-21).
 
No one was emptier of self than God; and His attribute of infinite selflessness manifested itself in His only Begotten. The only begotten Son alone could pay the price for a fallen world—a massive enterprise that will forever bring the highest happiness to the whole kingdom of God in heaven and earth. Among men, only the Son could go infinitely low; only this Man could trust in God to assist Him to fully empty Himself of self.
 
What hath God wrought! By permitting sin to destroy the Father’s image in Adam and his race, so that we were completely the vulgar and disgusting off-scouring of the universe, the Father revealed a continued favor and acceptance for His greatest creation by His faith that our seed of faith and love would sprout which He had breathed into humanity at creation. Then, the Father emptied Himself of all but love, and, through His unique, most beloved, and only begotten Son, laid down His own life for a grossly selfish race.
 
“Thou art My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” (Mark 1:11). “He shall see of the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied: by His knowledge shall My righteous servant justify many; for He shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide Him a portion with the great, and He shall divide the spoil with the strong; because He hath poured out His soul unto death: and He was numbered with the transgressors; and He bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.” (Isa. 53:11,12).
 
But, Satan has a counterfeit for the emptiness of self, the spirituality that God offers. Satan’s New Age spirituality is full of self. The humiliation of self is never dealt with, never addressed, or even considered. The humbling of self is avoided at all cost by everyone in the New Age movement and by their ancient leader. And the lack of humbling will result in total confusion, every man against each other. “And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.” (Rev. 18:2).
 
Spirituality without humility is a pretense and a fraud. It is blasphemy. The harmony that Christ gave His church becomes cacaphony. It ends in total chaos because the unrefrained weakness of selfishness trespasses the needs of everyone around. Without self restrained, no one loves or serves others. It’s every man for himself. Self is given free reign, and love cannot exist. This will be the condition of the world in the end. Uncontested pride will be the reason that “darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people” (Isa. 60:2).
 
But, heeding the call to come out of that horrific captivity is why God’s children will have light and happiness. “...but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and His glory shall be seen upon thee.” (Vs. 2).
 
“We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves.” (Rom. 15:1).
“Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” (Gal. 6:2).
 “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.” (Gal. 6:9,10).
“For every man shall bear his own burden.” (Gal. 6:5).
“For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.” (Gal. 6:3).
 
“He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much. If therefore ye have not been faithful in the [earthly] mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man’s, who shall give you that which is your own?” (Luke 16:10-12).
“So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God…. Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” (Luke 12:21,33,34).
 
“Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.
For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law….
The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.
Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying.
But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.” (Rom. 13:8-10,12-14).
 
All the glory of the apostolic church will be seen in the last church of God. And, likewise, all the darkness of spiritualism will be seen outside the church at the end. The distinction will be so marked as to leave all rejecters of God’s humbling without excuse. All who will not permit their pride to be humbled into the dust, who will have “a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof” (2Tim. 3:5), will have chosen their delusions.
 
They will have accepted the self-pleasing promises of peace without the humiliation that comes from the Law of God. Satan, the high priest of familiar spirits, will find an everlasting habitation in the souls who for so long warred against reproof and correction that they exclude themselves from eternal life. They will convince themselves that meekness and righteousness are the great curse of life and they will have judged themselves fully opposed to the kingdom of humility. They permitted the deceiver to delude them beyond hope. The repeated rejection of the Spirit of truth by rejecting His reproofs of sin, will leave them without a trace desire for truth. They sold themselves to the lawless demon world. Satan and his spirit hosts stole their hearts from their Creator and Redeemer. The rejectors of humiliation will reap their eternal reward—eternal destruction.
 
The first step in salvation and damnation is the choice to accept or to reject the rebukes and corrections that come our way. The reproofs from the Bible come through sacred history and subtle parable form, and are the nicest means of correction. Or, we may hear the sharper, harsher, and more direct reproofs from the unsanctified world which come due to the consequence for disdaining the Bible’s gentler reproofs. But, whether we hear  the Bible or not, the decision of our final judgment will come by ultimately accepting rebuke and correction and being humbled by them, or rejecting the corrections and retaining our pride. Our salvation or damnation is not arbitrarily decided by God, but by the outworking of our own decisions over the course of 70, 80, 90, or 100 years of life. With exception of a minute minority who flee the proud group for the humble, or vice versa, by the end of life we have fully made up our mind to serve the God of self-forgetfulness, or not. And, no matter the age, even the centenarians who finally accept the humbling at the end of life are little lambs in God’s sight.
 
“Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” (Luke 12:32).
 
 
“Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
But his delight is in the Law of the LORD; and in His law doth he meditate day and night.
And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish” (Ps. 1).

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

My answer to an email concerning the validity of a continued use of the "minchah" (the Hebrew grain offering) today

A retired Ph.D. from Biblical Research Institute writes:
 
It seems that Brother D______ L______ is an evangelical Christian who believes that during the millennium Christ will rule in Jerusalem here in earth (Christ’s millennial kingdom). This is part of the evangelical eschatology as taught by all premillennial Protestants, except Seventh-day Adventists. We believe during the millennium Christ will rule in heaven while on earth Satan will be bound because there is no one whom he can deceive.
 
The grain offering (minchah) is clearly part of the ceremonial law (Lev 2:1-16; 5:13; 6:14-23, etc.). Therefore, when Christ died on the cross all the OT offerings came to an end including the grain offering. As far as Jeremiah is concerned, Brother D______ L______ , like most premillennial Protestants (dispensationalists), believes that all the prophecies not fulfilled in the OT will be fulfilled in the future. Hence Jeremiah 33:16-18 will also be fulfilled literally in the future, and why not already practice it today.
What is not considered in this scenario is the context in Jeremiah. He wrote during the Babylonian exile and most of his prophecies concern the return of the Jews from Babylon and God’s promise to establish the Messianic kingdom here on earth. Note the promises in Jeremiah 33:6-9 and 15-17.
 
‘Behold, I will bring it health and healing; I will heal them and reveal to them the abundance of peace and truth. 7 `And I will cause the captives of Judah and the captives of Israel to return, and will rebuild those places as at the first. 8 `I will cleanse them from all their iniquity by which they have sinned against Me, and I will pardon all their iniquities by which they have sinned and by which they have transgressed against Me. 9 `Then it shall be to Me a name of joy, a praise, and an honor before all nations of the earth, who shall hear all the good that I do to them; they shall fear and tremble for all the goodness and all the prosperity that I provide for it.’
`In those days and at that time I will cause to grow up to David A Branch of righteousness; He shall execute judgment and righteousness in the earth. 16 In those days Judah will be saved, And Jerusalem will dwell safely. And this is the name by which she will be called: THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.’ 17 “For thus says the LORD: `David shall never lack a man to sit on the throne of the house of Israel;
 
(And this passage continues on to say, “neither shall the priests the Levites want [lack] a man before Me to offer burnt offerings, and to kindle meat [minchah] offerings, and to do sacrifice continually.” (Jer. 33:18).)
 
 
 
My friend D______ L______, believes that any Christian can offer the meal offering today, as a New Testament Levite. Therefore, my answer to the email:
 
My understanding is that the promise to Jeremiah was fulfilled in Christ, Prince Messiah, our Prince and Saviour, in His exaltation after His ascension. Now He is sitting on the throne of His Father until His Father can put all enemies under His feet; and as High Priest, He is also ever living to make intercession for us, offering His sacrifice in our place (“the chastisement of our peace was upon Him”, “He hath poured out His soul unto death”, “‘My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death’...and He went a little further, and fell on His face” and “His sweat was it were great drops of blood falling to the ground”). Thus, He could send the abundant, reconciled Spirit of His Father to His people. Jesus is the Lord our righteousness, and the church holds that name because she watches and waits with patience for the hope of His righteousness through trusting in her Lord Jesus and through following Him in His heavenly ministrations.
 
The precious promises that Peter (2Pet. 1:4) referred to, which give us the divine nature, came from Isaiah and Jeremiah and from all the prophets of the Lord, and those promises concerned Israel being given a new heart to love and obey the Law of God through double pardon after she would receive of the Lord’s hand double punishment for all her sins. Peter, Paul, and the other apostles went around the world proclaiming that the promises had just been fulfilled, and they were moving the world. And that gospel of double pardon will go around the world one more time after the church has again received of the Lord double punishment for all of our sins; and then the people of God in the world will be moved again.
 
It isn’t literal Israel that is to be exalted today, but the church of God, “the Israel of God”, the true “concumcision...which have no confidence in the flesh”, which “is that of the heart, in the spirit...whose praise is not of men, but of God.” But, the church’s exaltation will not come until after Jesus has accomplished His warfare against us and we have been punished for all of our sins of abandoning His truth, following after the Baalim and Asharoth of this world, instead of trusting in King Jehovah to bring us to love His righteousness through His only begotten Son, the great Prince.
 
Let’s go back to the old paths where is the good way, and we will find rest for our souls.
 
David
 
 
 
Exceeding important, though not mentioned in my email, is that a Hebrew offering a meal offering was the equivalent to him thanking God for His pardon. The minchah followed a burnt offering. And the burnt offering followed a conviction of sin, which followed a new, deeper understanding of the Law of God.
 
But, my friend who is a new Adventist, still clings to many errors of Evangelicalism, and hasn’t yet surrendered to the Law of God seen in the Spirit of Prophecy. He refuses to look at the high standard of righteousness from Jesus given through Ellen White. Everyone who has been given access to her writings, but who turns it down, is not surrendered to the 700 foot high Law of God and can receive no huge conviction of sin that needs a great big Saviour from sin.
 
Of them it is written, “The carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the Law of God, neither indeed can be.” (Rom. 8:7). “For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.” (Rom. 10:3). “Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away.” (2 Cor. 3:16).
 
But, until they turn to the Law and brave its condemnation of their sin, all the “thank” offerings to the Lord are worse than a slap in His face. They are Cain’s offering, which the Lord rejected. They are the pagan offerings to Ashtoreth, [asherah, “happy”] that make the open sinners rejoice; but, their rejoicing is in Ashtoreth and Isis and Diana and Mary, and not in God, through His Son. From the very beginning of human history to this day, this pernicious substitute for redemption has been practiced. And it was just such rejoicing that the Lord promised that He would rid from Israel. And He will rid the same from His people today.

“Then will I cause to cease from the cities of Judah, and from the streets of Jerusalem, the voice of mirth, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride: for the land shall be desolate.” (Jer. 7:34).

It is by going to the Law [the Spirit of Prophecy], and letting it give us the huge condemnation which needs a huge Saviour in Jesus, that will drive us to the cross and find One who loves to make intercession for us. But, if we fear to go to the Law and its condemnation of our sins, then we will find the consequences a hard road indeed, because we departed from the Law and are serving the gods of Satan. It will grind our souls to powder through “an evil spirit from God.” (1Sam. 18:10). “Whosoever shall fall on this Stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.” (Matt. 21:44). And they will do the work of Cain and Nimrod to corrupt the earth before God and to slay the innocent redeemed Abels and Davids who did fall on the Stone, Jesus Christ.
 
And as for the theologians who teach that the Law is abrogated because of grace, and who have not submitted themselves to the righteousness of God, we have these warnings. “Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned: from which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling; desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm.” (1Tim. 1:5-7). “For though thou wash thee with nitre, and take thee much soap, yet thine iniquity is marked before Me, saith the Lord GOD.” (Jer. 2:22). All of their theologizing means nothing, because they speak not in accordance with the Law and the testimony of the prophets of God.
 
“There were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.” (2Pet. 2:1-3).
 
“Behold, I will send My messenger, and he shall prepare the way before Me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to His temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, He shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.
But who may abide the day of His coming? and who shall stand when He appeareth? for He is like a refiner’s fire, and like fullers’ soap:
And He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and He shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness.
Then shall the offering of Judah and Jerusalem be pleasant unto the LORD, as in the days of old, and as in former years.
And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger from his right, and fear not Me, saith the LORD of hosts.” (Mal. 3:1-5).

Sunday, January 17, 2016

The aims of Ecumenism


“For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, (as there be gods many, and lords many,) but to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in HIM; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by Him.” (1Cor. 8:5,6).

There is only one God, the King, and HIS Son, Prince Jesus. We can call on no other gods. This sounds terribly elementary, and it might sound like I’m beating a dead horse. But, again and again it is becoming a very subtle issue in the news.

I was talking to someone about the current crisis in Protestantism, how that the protest is over and that the Pope and the Vatican have been proclaiming it so. After a small exchange, the person told me about a book entitled, How do you spell God? I thought she was thinking I had been dogmatic and that she was going to spell God, “L-O-V-E”. But, instead she began to talk about Buddhism, Hinduism, etc. In her thinking, all of those religions are no different from the religion of the Bible, and no one should exalt the Bible’s Creator over the other persons of worship. In her view, raising one religion over another isn’t politically correct, and it is the cause of wars throughout history and in our day.

But, every Christian, and especially the Pope, should accept only the name of the God of Abraham and of Moses. “I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by My name JEHOVAH was I not known to them.” (Ex. 6:3).

“And [Jonah] said unto them, I am an Hebrew; and I fear [JEHOVAH], the God of heaven, which hath made the sea and the dry land.” (Jon. 1:9).

The above person with whom I was speaking got upset and said that all religions are equally valid and that no one religion should force another religion to bow before it, that each of their respective holy men is no better than another. She said that they are all equally loved and respected. And this is even espoused by the high priest of Christianity, the pope.

But, what does the real High Priest of Christianity, Christ Himself, have to say about all of His competitors?

He says, “This is life eternal, that they might know THEE the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom THOU hast sent.” (John 17:3).

There is only one valid religion in the Bible—the ancient Hebrew religion that the Lord carried over into His apostolic church. There has only ever been one true God, JEHOVAH, and HIS representative, God’s only true only begotten Son, whose name is also JEHOVAH. The Son of God carries His Father’s name, a practise that the children of Adam have continued. “Behold, I send an Angel before thee, to keep thee in the way, and to bring thee into the place which I have prepared. Beware of Him, and obey His voice, provoke Him not; for He will not pardon your transgressions: for MY name is in Him.” (Ex. 23:20,21).

Since the beginning, it would never ever do for any child of Adam to call on or love or bow to a god other than his Creator—no Buddha, no Brahma, no Krishna, no Allah, no animist’s tree god or rock god or river god. Our Creator was emphatic about this. To provoke the Angel, who was Christ, was to defy His sole rulership over the holy people, and to reap the terrible repercussions.

Speaking through Jeremiah, Jesus showed that the Jews were allowing for a fellowship of gods with their God and His joyful, truly redemptive, comforting religion, just as Christianity is doing today. “Wherefore I will yet plead with you, saith the LORD, and with your children’s children will I plead. For pass over the isles of Chittim, and see; and send unto Kedar, and consider diligently, and see if there be such a thing. Hath a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods? but My people have changed their glory for that which doth not profit.” (Jer. 2:9-11).

Can it be that Protestant America has fallen into the same abomination that Israel fell into over and over again? Most Americans have no idea that they are Protestants. But, even though multitudes might call themselves agnostic, atheistic, hedonistic, or, happily non-religious, they are descendents of Protestantism and their U.S. Constitution is Protestant, being that it gives freedoms and rights to its citizens, and it separates religion and state. Today Americans are all Protestants. They are no different than the ancient Israelites, and both ancient children of Israel and the modern counterpart of the holy people have changed their God and their glory for worthless trinkets. The problem is so pervasive that everyone is as blind to the change today as the Jews were then.

“I am the LORD [JEHOVAH]: that is My name: and My glory will I not give to another, neither My praise to graven images.
Behold, the former things are come to pass, and new things do I declare: before they spring forth I tell you of them.
Sing unto the LORD [JEHOVAH] a new song, and His praise from the end of the earth, ye that go down to the sea, and all that is therein; the isles, and the inhabitants thereof.
Let the wilderness and the cities thereof lift up their voice, the villages that Kedar doth inhabit: let the inhabitants of the rock sing, let them shout from the top of the mountains.
Let them give glory unto the LORD [JEHOVAH], and declare His praise in the islands.” (Isa. 42:8-12).

Jehovah never authorized any other person beside HIM and HIS Son to be worshiped. “And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto HIM that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.” (Rev. 5:13). How then can the pope think that he can change the will of his Creator which was made very plain in writing a thousand years before there was the first pope? And how can he tempt the Protestant people of God into the same apostasy, if he is not the enemy? “He shall speak great words against the most High...and think to change times and laws.” (Dan. 7:25). Accusing and accosting the Most High and changing biblical doctrine is blasphemy and a heinous crime against heaven. “I...saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads... and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.” (Rev. 13:1). The seven heads speak of the holy look this ravenous power would have.

Being that the pope is brokering the ecumenism of every heathen religion in the world, he gets the center of every religion’s focus. And being that his exponentially multiplying army of Jesuits have spread violence around the globe (ISIS) which he has now restrained temporarily in order to appear the world’s savior and peace-giver, he gets the highest place of adoration from humanity. The preceding verse of Daniel 7:25 repeats in a different setting. “The king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvellous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done.” (Dan. 11:36).

The reason the Lord required that He be called by the name, JEHOVAH, is because He has always had a rival by another similar name; that is, Baal (meaning, “The Lord”). The people kept forgetting about the one true Lord JEHOVAH because of the one false lord, Baal. So, HE exposed Baal’s deception by revealing HIS own name. Their names identified the true and the false, distinguishing the pure from the depraved, the holy from the satanic.

“How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets that prophesy lies? yea, they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart; which think to cause My people to forget My name by their dreams which they tell every man to his neighbour, as their fathers have forgotten My name for Baal.” (Jer. 23:26,27).

But, Jesus was very careful to reconcile His disciples and followers to His Father, and to know His Father through HIS name. “And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to THEE. Holy Father, keep through THINE own name those whom THOU hast given Me, that they may be one, as We are. While I was with them in the world, I kept them in THY name: those that THOU gavest Me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled…. And I have declared unto them THY name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith THOU hast loved Me may be in them, and I in them.” (John 17:11,12,26).

Fidelity to JEHOVAH’s name would forever be the requirement upon His people, even after He punished them for following other gods.

“And it shall come to pass, if they [the pastors of the Diaspora Jews] will diligently learn the ways of My people, to swear by My name, The LORD [JEHOVAH] liveth; as they taught My people to swear by Baal; then shall they be built in the midst of My people. But if they will not obey, I will utterly pluck up and destroy that nation, saith the LORD [JEHOVAH].” (Jer. 12:16,17).

Jehovah alone rules His people. They hear His voice and they follow Him. Another voice they will not hear, but will flee from it. For them to serve Baalim, His primary adversary, is an affront that He can never accept. This He made plain in His second of the Ten Commandments, which He boomed from the top of Sinai. “Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate Me.” (Ex. 20:5).

“I am the LORD [JEHOVAH], and there is none else, there is no God beside Me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known Me: that they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside Me. I am the LORD [JEHOVAH], and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD [JEHOVAH] do all these things.” (Isa. 45:5-7).

JEHOVAH alone saved Israel from slavery, and in the process He put to shame all the Egyptian gods, including Pharaoh, who was another god and high priest of Baal.

“And [JEHOVAH] said unto Moses, Rise up early in the morning, and stand before Pharaoh, and say unto him, Thus saith [JEHOVAH] God of the Hebrews, Let My people go, that they may serve Me. For I will at this time send all My plagues upon thine heart, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people; that thou mayest know that there is none like Me in all the earth. For now I will stretch out My hand, that I may smite thee and thy people with pestilence; and thou shalt be cut off from the earth. And in very deed for this cause have I raised thee up, for to shew in thee My power; and that My name may be declared throughout all the earth.” (Ex. 9:13-16).

The God of the Bible is the only powerful God, and that God was Christ. To Pope Francis and all the beatified popes, to Buddha, Krishna, Brahma, et cetera, the LORD Jesus Christ says, “The loftiness of man shall be bowed down, and the haughtiness of men shall be made low: and the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day.” (Isa. 2:17). “Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou has said, I am a God, I sit in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas; yet thou art a man, and not God, though thou set thine heart as the heart of God.” (Eze. 28:2). To the world the Lord JESUS admonishes, “Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils: for wherein is he to be accounted of?” (Isa. 2:17,22).

“Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help. His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.” (Ps. 146:3,4).

“Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD. For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited. Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is…. I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.” (Jer. 17:5-7,10).

Only JEHOVAH and His holy Child JESUS must receive praise and adoration.

“Blessed be the LORD [JEHOVAH] God, the God of Israel, who only doeth wondrous things.
And blessed be His glorious name for ever: and let the whole earth be filled with His glory; Amen, and Amen.” (Ps. 72:18,19).
“As a beast goeth down into the valley, the Spirit of the LORD [JEHOVAH] caused him [Israel] to rest: so didst Thou lead Thy people, to make Thyself a glorious name.” (Isa. 63:14).
“Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth.” (Phil. 2:9,10).

His name can never be classed with other created beings, whether they be angelic or human or demonic. Only JEHOVAH reigns supreme and only HE truly blesses.

“Speak unto Aaron and unto his sons, saying, On this wise ye shall bless the children of Israel, saying unto them,
The LORD [JEHOVAH] bless thee, and keep thee:
The LORD [JEHOVAH] make His face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee:
The LORD [JEHOVAH] lift up His countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.
And they shall put My name upon the children of Israel; and I will bless them.” (Num. 6:23-27). Whether good behaving or misbehaving, His people received this blessing every day. His mercy endureth forever.
“But My faithfulness and My mercy shall be with him: and in My name shall his horn be exalted.” (Ps. 89:24).
“Because he hath set his love upon Me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known My name.” (Ps. 91:14).

And all others who desire worship are imposters and thieves and robbers, who come to kill and to steal and to destroy. But, JEHOVAH is near to save any and all whose hearts will be humbled, and who will again accept His Law and return to Him.

“Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city: for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean.
Shake thyself from the dust; arise, and sit down, O Jerusalem: loose thyself from the bands of thy neck, O captive daughter of Zion.
For thus saith the LORD [JEHOVAH], Ye have sold yourselves for nought; and ye shall be redeemed without money.
For thus saith the Lord GOD [JEHOVAH], My people went down aforetime into Egypt to sojourn there; and the Assyrian oppressed them without cause.
Now therefore, what have I here, saith the LORD [JEHOVAH], that My people is taken away for nought? they that rule over them make them to howl, saith the LORD [JEHOVAH]; and My name continually every day is blasphemed.
Therefore My people shall know My name: therefore they shall know in that day that I am He that doth speak: behold, it is I.
How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!” (Isa. 52:1-7).

“O LORD [JEHOVAH], my strength, and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of affliction, the Gentiles shall come unto Thee from the ends of the earth, and shall say, Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit. Shall a man make gods unto himself, and they are no gods? Therefore, behold, I will this once cause them to know, I will cause them to know Mine hand and My might; and they shall know that My name is The LORD [JEHOVAH].” (Jer. 16:19-21).

Israel was grievously punished for including the worship of other personalities into the worship of JEHOVAH. What makes Protestant Americans believe that they can so brazenly group Jesus with Buddha et al, and do it without punitive measures from heaven?

“For, lo, I begin to bring evil on the city which is called by My name, and should ye be utterly unpunished? Ye shall not be unpunished: for I will call for a sword upon all the inhabitants of the earth, saith the LORD [JEHOVAH] of hosts. Therefore prophesy thou against them all these words, and say unto them, The LORD [JEHOVAH] shall roar from on high, and utter His voice from His holy habitation; He shall mightily roar upon His habitation; He shall give a shout, as they that tread the grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth.” (Jer. 25:29,30).

“If thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, THE LORD [JEHOVAH] THY GOD; then the LORD [JEHOVAH] will make thy plagues wonderful, and the plagues of thy seed, even great plagues, and of long continuance, and sore sicknesses, and of long continuance.” (Deut. 28:58,59).

Protestantism, especially in America, has diverted so far from the Reformation of 500 years ago, that it is following the pagan religions of the world. Protestantism has adopted them into its fellowship, and its practices and many gods are Protestantism’s practices and gods.

Jehovah gave His apostolic church the beautiful bread basket of Europe, a land flowing with milk and honey. The continent was a land of Goshen for the church to thrive under His spiritual leadership. But, the church lost its first love for its God and apostatized. Every form and sacrament of paganism entered into its communion and turned it into the beast in Daniel 7, the same little horn in Daniel 8 and the king of the north in Daniel 11 and the first beast Revelation in 13:1-7, all of them the same evil organization that persecuted the people of the Lord during the Dark Ages of Europe. Nevertheless, throughout that dark time Jesus kept His church planted in the wilderness, where He protected it from its deadly enemy.

“The Roman Church now presents a fair front to the world, covering with apologies her record of horrible cruelties. She has clothed herself in Christlike garments; but she is unchanged. Every principle of the papacy that existed in past ages exists today. The doctrines devised in the darkest ages are still held. Let none deceive themselves. The papacy that Protestants are now so ready to honor is the same that ruled the world in the days of the Reformation, when men of God stood up, at the peril of their lives, to expose her iniquity. She possesses the same pride and arrogant assumption that lorded it over kings and princes, and claimed the prerogatives of God. Her spirit is no less cruel and despotic now than when she crushed out human liberty and slew the saints of the Most High.” Great Controversy, p. 571.

Then the Lord delivered His wilderness church and gave them another land of Goshen, flowing with milk and honey. The Americas were another frontier, completely untouched by the corruptions of the rest of the world. Satan claimed the southern continent with his Jesuits and Catholicism, and Jesus laid claim to the northern continent with His American Reformers, and their first and second Great Awakenings to the Spirit of God. But, they eventually also left their first love; and their candlestick has also been removed. Their light has gone out; they no longer carry the torch of truth to humanity. They have repeated the history of the ancient post-apostolic church, and are becoming the beast of Revelation 13:11-17.

This second beast of Revelation 13 rebuilds the intolerant, persecuting church of the first beast, which destroyed the holy people. “And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months. And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven. And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.” (Rev. 13:5-7). “And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.” (Dan. 7:25).

The second beast of Revelation 13 has two little horns of a lamb—Protestantism and Republicanism—the greatest peace making principles world history has ever witnessed. Built upon the legacy of Moses and David, and then reinstituted by Christ, our Prince and Saviour, the holy religion of the Protestant Reformation and its civil Constitution of responsible self-government brought new life to the church and freedom again to the world. But, before it could shed itself completely of all the pagan errors and corrupted doctrines of the Dark Ages, the children of the Reformation set their hearts on the real estate slipped away from the Lord’s original calling for it. Satan worked with a vengeance to regain every square inch of ground he lost to Bible religion. He moved his earthly agency to destroy the Bible from the European continent and Bible religion from the hearts of the people.

But, when the Lord providentially opened up the American continent to His beleaguered church, she escaped the flood of Jesuit persecution and she lived in peaceful seclusion. “And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth.” (Rev. 12:15,16). Today we are seeing the final stage of that deliverance. “And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” (Rev. 12:17).

The final events of the persecuted church are fast playing out, as that church of the Dark Ages’ wilderness has already largely morphed into the second beast of Revelation 13, and is rebuilding the same killing Inquisitions from which it once fled. Under the purview of the first beast, the Vatican, American Protestantism has become politically-motivated, rather than spiritual. Its focus on the “the Spirit” has taken away its focus on the Prince and Savior, and the light of its candlestick has almost completely been put out. Soon, the “venerable day of the Sun” will again receive sacredness as national Sunday legislation will force all Americans, church and unchurched, to join the churches of Protestantism and Catholicism.

This will come as a huge shock to the unchurched, liberty-loving Americans who live as they please and want only freedom from religion. All their freedoms will go away because their Constitution that guaranteed those freedoms will go away. And all of this is punishment from the God of Protestantism for its presumption on the God of love. They cast behind them the Fount of all blessing, and hewed them out cisterns which can hold no water. Yet, they have dared to think that it is their inherited right to have the freedoms which, out of His joy for their self-sacrificing forefathers, the God of Protestantism and the Bible gave them and their descendents as a gift of love. But, we have not been worthy of the gifts which He gave from His heart, and our freedoms have become the cause of our very destruction.

The churched Protestants have welcomed the rivals of Christ—Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism, Judaism, Catholicism, and other world religions just as the ancient nation of Israel did prior to God cutting them off by ancient Babylon and its juggernaut Chaldean armies. The last strands of God’s mercy remain as long as His Bible has any influence in the hearts of the Protestants and Adventists. By pen and voice we need to sound the warning against the corruptions of the New Age churches of Protestantism and Old Age church of Catholicism. Because the day approaches rapidly, possibly within 11 months, when the Bible will be taken away and all protests will be considered horribly uncivil, terroristic, anti-peacemaking, and treasonous to the world government overseen by the Vatican. The only safety the servants of God will have will come by the providential covering of the Lord’s hand. “The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear Him, and delivereth them.” (Ps. 34:7).

“And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming:
Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” (2Thess. 2:8-12).

Jehovah will not restrain His vengeance much longer. “There shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time.” (Dan. 12:1). The last plagues will fall on everyone who has received into his heart the ancient occult system today advertised as, Spiritual Formation, and the new global totalitarian religion and governance—“the men which had the the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image.” (Rev. 16:2). Everyone who hears the so-called “voice of God” through that pagan system which was borrowed from the eastern mystics of Hinduism, can never escape the pit of lawless grace from the familiar spirits which are ready to possess every victim of Spiritual Formation.

“Because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come…. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.” (Matt. 24:12-14,22). “At that time shall Michael stand up, the great Prince which standeth for the children of thy people…and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.” (Dan. 12:1).

“Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: and then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.” (Matt. 24:29,30). The living saints, who are purified by the preaching of the gospel and by the world-wide manhunt for them, will see a small black cloud coming from the open space of Orion.

“Soon there appears in the east a small black cloud, about half the size of a man’s hand. It is the cloud which surrounds the Saviour and which seems in the distance to be shrouded in darkness. The people of God know this to be the sign of the Son of man. In solemn silence they gaze upon it as it draws nearer the earth, becoming lighter and more glorious, until it is a great white cloud, its base a glory like consuming fire, and above it the rainbow of the covenant. Jesus rides forth as a mighty conqueror.—GC 640, 641. 

Soon our eyes were drawn to the east, for a small black cloud had appeared, about half as large as a man’s hand, which we all knew was the sign of the Son of man. In solemn silence we all gazed on the cloud as it drew nearer, and became lighter, glorious, and still more glorious, till it was a great white cloud. The bottom appeared like fire; a rainbow was over the cloud, while around it were ten thousand angels, singing a most lovely song; and upon it sat the Son of man. His hair was white and curly and lay on His shoulders, and upon His head were many crowns. His feet had the appearance of fire; in His right hand was a sharp sickle, in His left a silver trumpet. His eyes were as a flame of fire, which searched His children through and through.—1T 60.” Heaven, p. 31.

“Then all faces gathered paleness, and those that God had rejected gathered blackness. Then we all cried out, ‘Who shall be able to stand? Is my robe spotless?’ Then the angels ceased to sing, and there was some time of awful silence, when Jesus spoke: ‘Those who have clean hands and pure hearts shall be able to stand; My grace is sufficient for you.’ At this our faces lighted up, and joy filled every heart. And the angels struck a note higher and sang again, while the cloud drew still nearer the earth.
    Then Jesus’ silver trumpet sounded, as He descended on the cloud, wrapped in flames of fire. He gazed on the graves of the sleeping saints, then raised His eyes and hands to heaven, and cried, ‘Awake! awake! awake! ye that sleep in the dust, and arise.’ Then there was a mighty earthquake. The graves opened, and the dead came up clothed with immortality. The 144,000 shouted, ‘Alleluia!’ as they recognized their friends who had been torn from them by death, and in the same moment we were changed and caught up together with them to meet the Lord in the air.” Early Writings, p. 15,16.

“And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His power.” (2Thess. 1:7-9).

“For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him.
For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the Archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” (1Thess. 4:14-17).

“If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” (John 14:3).

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

The testimony of Jesus

“And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.” (Rev. 12:10-12).
 
The testimony that they gave was the testimony Jesus gave. Theirs resembled His. It was full of heart-felt yearning for the souls of their persecutors. Jesus did not resist Judas, but mildly rebuked him when he came to betray his Master, appealing to the heart of His former disciple one more time.
“And Jesus said unto him, Friend, wherefore art thou come?” (Matt. 26:50).
“Judas… drew near unto Jesus to kiss Him. But Jesus said unto him, Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss?” (Luke 22:47,48).
No anger or resentment marred the tone of Christ’s reproof. Only the pathos of His Father’s infinite love. How He spoke to Judas, then, is evidence for how He spoke to all of His priestly, rabbinic, Pharisee, and mixed multitude objectors. “Jesus did not suppress one word of truth, but He uttered it always in love.… He spoke the truth, but always in love. He denounced hypocrisy, unbelief, and iniquity; but tears were in His voice as He uttered His scathing rebukes.” Steps to Christ, p. 12.

 
The heart’s testimony of Jesus is heard on Calvary with His seven sayings:
“Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34).
“Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with Me in paradise.” (Vs. 43).
“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?” (Matt. 27:46).
“When Jesus therefore saw His mother, and the disciple standing by, whom He loved, He saith unto His mother, 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.” (John 19:26,27).
“After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst.” (Vs. 28).
“Father, into Thy hands I commend My spirit.” (Luke 23:46).
“Jesus, when He had cried again with a loud voice,” “It is finished” “and He bowed His head, and gave up the ghost.” (Matt. 27:50; John 19:30).
 
“He hath poured out His soul unto death.” (Isa. 53:12).
 
The testimony of Jesus was heard most distinctly at the end of His earthly life.
 
“He wept over Jerusalem, the city He loved, which refused to receive Him, the way, the truth, and the life. They had rejected Him, the Saviour, but He regarded them with pitying tenderness.” Steps to Christ, p. 12.
 
“Jesus gazes upon the scene, and the vast multitude hush their shouts, spellbound by the sudden vision of beauty. All eyes turn upon the Saviour, expecting to see in His countenance the admiration they themselves feel. But instead of this they behold a cloud of sorrow. They are surprised and disappointed to see His eyes fill with tears, and His body rock to and fro like a tree before the tempest, while a wail of anguish bursts from His quivering lips, as if from the depths of a broken heart.
…This sudden sorrow was like a note of wailing in a grand triumphal chorus. In the midst of a scene of rejoicing, where all were paying Him homage, Israel’s King was in tears; not silent tears of gladness, but tears and groans of insuppressible agony….
…Yet it was not because of these reminders of His cruel death that the Redeemer wept and groaned in anguish of spirit…. It was the sight of Jerusalem that pierced the heart of Jesus--Jerusalem that had rejected the Son of God and scorned His love, that refused to be convinced by His mighty miracles, and was about to take His life. He saw what she was in her guilt of rejecting her Redeemer, and what she might have been had she accepted Him who alone could heal her wound. He had come to save her; how could He give her up?...
     Jesus raised His hand,--that had so often blessed the sick and suffering,--and waving it toward the doomed city, in broken utterances of grief exclaimed: “If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace!--” Here the Saviour paused, and left unsaid what might have been the condition of Jerusalem had she accepted the help that God desired to give her,--the gift of His beloved Son….
     But the bright picture of what Jerusalem might have been fades from the Saviour’s sight. He realizes what she now is under the Roman yoke, bearing the frown of God, doomed to His retributive judgment. He takes up the broken thread of His lamentation: “But now they are hid from thine eyes. For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, and shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.”
     Christ came to save Jerusalem with her children; but Pharisaical pride, hypocrisy, jealousy, and malice had prevented Him from accomplishing His purpose. Jesus knew the terrible retribution which would be visited upon the doomed city. He saw Jerusalem encompassed with armies, the besieged inhabitants driven to starvation and death, mothers feeding upon the dead bodies of their own children….
Jerusalem had been the child of His care, and as a tender father mourns over a wayward son, so Jesus wept over the beloved city. How can I give thee up? How can I see thee devoted to destruction? Must I let thee go to fill up the cup of thine iniquity?... When the fast westering sun should pass from sight in the heavens, Jerusalem’s day of grace would be ended. While the procession was halting on the brow of Olivet, it was not yet too late for Jerusalem to repent. The angel of mercy was then folding her wings to step down from the golden throne to give place to justice and swift-coming judgment. But Christ’s great heart of love still pleaded for Jerusalem, that had scorned His mercies, despised His warnings, and was about to imbrue her hands in His blood. If Jerusalem would but repent, it was not yet too late. While the last rays of the setting sun were lingering on temple, tower, and pinnacle, would not some good angel lead her to the Saviour’s love, and avert her doom? Beautiful and unholy city, that had stoned the prophets, that had rejected the Son of God, that was locking herself by her impenitence in fetters of bondage,--her day of mercy was almost spent!” The Desire of Ages, p. 575-577.
 
The deep pathos of Christ on mount Olivet was plainly seen in Abel, and painfully absent from Cain. While Cain wildly accused his younger brother of every corrupted fabrication his mind could imagine, Abel yearned for the salvation from the devils that haunted his heir-apparent older sibling. Abel’s audible and visible expressions evinced only endearing love, which his elder interpreted as stubborn resistance. Cain desired to pull Abel into his ugly frame of mind, but Abel found no desire to be drawn into the temptation to retaliate against the provocations and to dishonor his Redeemer. But, in Cain’s diseased mind, the spirit of Christ, the testimony of Jesus in Abel only added to the offense. Love from above was fuel that stoked the fire that Satan had developed in the soul of Cain. The more love that flowed from the sight and sounds of his brother, the more anger and hatred raged in his heart, until he could no longer endure the air of heaven, and, in an instant, rose up and silenced his brother forever.
 
The history of every prophets’ testimony has been strewn with the same desperation and obvious need of divine aid to help sinners see the exceeding sinfulness of their rebellion. The helplessness of the servant of God adds to the powerful “demonstration of the Spirit and of power.” (1Cor. 2:4). Like the Saviour who is inspiring them, their groaning, the choking back of tears, the anguish from the voice, all cut through the hardened insolent hearts, and show evidence of its divine origin. “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in His sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.” (Heb. 4:12,13).
 
Jesus, the Prince of princes, and High Prophet of prophets, had the testimony of the Spirit more than the chiefest of prophets. “The men of Nineveh…repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here.” (Matt. 12:41).
 
The testimony of Jesus is much more than a pat phrase that equals the gift of prophecy and pinpoints the remnant seed of the church. The testimony of Jesus is more than just man-made words; it is Spirit. And every prophet had more than just humanly inspired words or written letters; they had the Spirit of God, the Spirit of prophecy. The Spirit of prophecy gave them powerful yearning from God, and came from the human agent through whom their Redeemer spoke.  The testimony was more than just a message, but a messenger; not just a written treatise of rebukes and warnings, but a spoken message from a sanctified being moved by the Spirit of the divine. It was more than the voice of authority to point out error, but the voice of helpless, desperate yearnings to turn the erring back into the paths of truth and long life. The testimony of Jesus from all His little ones will have the quality of His deep love for those being warned and reproved and admonished. They are “spiritual” (Gal. 6:1) and meek, tender-hearted and acutely mindful to avoid overdoing rebuke toward the erring. Jesus works together with His servants to “restore such an one in the spirit of meekness” (Gal. 6:1).
 
The spirit of the testimony from Jesus, “the law of the Spirit of life in Christ” (Rom. 8:2), does not give us a profession of faith, but a confession of faith, that is, a confession of love.
 
“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” (Rom. 10:9). The witnesses give their confession of Jesus from a heart that He has sanctified and molded into His image, rather than from a profession of empty words, from the head, and not from the Spirit of Christ.
 
“For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Rom. 10:10). Once we have had this kind of faith and openness of expression, we will speak correctly for Jesus. Even if the vocabulary is faulty or the language a barrier, the spirit from which the testimony flows will be a fountain of life. And when the spirit of the listener has the need for God, the Spirit will give the correct meaning of the words spoken, even if the words come in an unknown tongue. The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of the prophet.
 
The testimonies of Jesus in His prophets were not given in cold formalism, suspicious distrust, fear of reprisal of ridicule, or hard-heartedness, but from the warm, sorrowing soul of prophets sent to convince and evict the cold formalism that atheistic unbelief always brings to the people who need to hear the true testimony by the servants of God. If they refuse to hear it from the written word, they must hear it audibly and visibly.
 
“Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty” (2Cor. 3:17), “which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil.” (Heb. 6:19). The prophets of God have “the glorious liberty of the children of God.” (Rom. 8:21). “The Law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” (Rom. 8:2). By that liberty from the power of sin, they also have perfect freedom because they are liberated from the strictures of reputation and social custom. They have the freedom to boldly express the will of God. Their focus is no longer on self. Their full expressions are equally to the people in public and to God in the privacy of their souls. Neither humiliation nor mockery of their outer appearance prevents the revelation of their inner thoughts, and their presentation communicates the full will of the Creator to all the senses of the hearers. They have renounced the world, and have been sanctified by Law of God, and “the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned.” (1Tim. 1:5). The Lord has put His Law in their hearts, and their testimonies reflect the Law and its Author as He speaks it profoundly in their conscience.
 
“To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” (Isa. 8:20). The Law alone is not enough for the sinner to distinguish his faults; the Law must come with the messenger from God who is converted and filled with God’s loving Spirit. False teachers, false leaders, and false prophets cannot have the testimony of Jesus because they do not have His Law hallowed in their hearts and written in their minds. They are dark, and their testimonies reflect their darkness.
 
They don’t have peace with God because they never surrendered to His Law. Therefore they never submitted to the righteousness of God and had faith put into them that would have reconciled them with God. This faith is the gift of Christ, His faith to be transmitted to them through His Spirit, the faith of Jesus under whose wings they could have come to trust. Without this faith it is impossible to please God and to be released from His curse upon their souls, His chastisement of their peace. Their dark souls are heard out of their testimonies which are devoid of sweet love, joy, and peace. They might have light and power, some even great light and power, but they will have no sweet love, joy, and peace. The followers of the true Shepherd hear His voice in the testimony of His under-shepherds; but the true followers will flee from false, empty testimonies that have no peace and credentials of heaven.
 
The hard-hearted leaders in Jesus’ day had nothing of the testimony of Jesus. Though His purity makes His children tremble, they feel safe only with Him.
 
“Jesus looked for a moment upon the scene,—the trembling victim in her shame, the hard-faced dignitaries, devoid of even human pity. His spirit of stainless purity shrank from the spectacle.” The Desire of Ages, p. 461.
 
But, “the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus” (Gal. 3:26) have His Spirit. They see the glory of God in the face of Jesus, and they show that glory in look and word. Even in reproof His voice is heard in theirs. They trust that any success in advancing the kingdom in their community or in individuals is only the work of God, and not in themselves. They have wonderful rest in that reality. Paul’s experience is theirs. “Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. …when I am weak, then am I strong.” (2Cor. 12:9,10). “For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for My sake shall find it.” (Matt. 16:25).
 
In the testimony of Jesus outside the tomb of Lazarus, we peer into the heart of Christ. There we see His love for people for who He longed with fierce longing to uplift and to make sons of the living God.
 
“When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, He groaned in the spirit, and was troubled,
And said, Where have ye laid him? They said unto Him, Lord, come and see.
Jesus wept….
Jesus therefore again groaning in Himself cometh to the grave. It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it.
Jesus said, Take ye away the stone. Martha, the sister of him that was dead, saith unto Him, Lord, by this time he stinketh: for he hath been dead four days.” (John 11:33-35,38,39).
 
The paid-for weepers thought that they were the only real children of God on earth. But, they were ignorant in the way of salvation, though they believed themselves saved. It was His love for them that caused Jesus to noticeably groan and weep. In the testimony of Jesus there is room for the groaning that holds back burning tears inspired by the Spirit of Christ; there is even room for outbursts of weeping, as we see in Christ. “The Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.” (Rom. 8:26).
 
The testimony of Jesus comes from a father’s heart of love, and at times can be a rare, strong expression of love.
 
“And the Jews’ passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem,
And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting:
And when He had made a scourge of small cords, He drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables;
And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not My Father’s house an house of merchandise.
And His disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of Thine house hath eaten Me up.” (John 2:13-17).
 
“What will ye? shall I come unto you with a rod, or in love, and in the spirit of meekness?” (1Cor. 4:21).
“And it came to pass, as soon as he came nigh unto the camp, that he saw the calf, and the dancing: and Moses’ anger waxed hot, and he cast the tables out of his hands, and brake them beneath the mount. And he took the calf which they had made, and burnt it in the fire, and ground it to powder, and strawed it upon the water, and made the children of Israel drink of it.” (Ex. 32:19,20).
 
But, testimony of Jesus is the farthest thing from the testimony of Jehu.
 
“And [Jehu] said, Come with me, and see my zeal for the LORD. So they made him ride in his chariot.
And when he came to Samaria, he slew all that remained unto Ahab in Samaria, till he had destroyed him, according to the saying of the LORD, which He spake to Elijah.
And Jehu gathered all the people together, and said unto them, Ahab served Baal a little; but Jehu shall serve him much.
Now therefore call unto me all the prophets of Baal, all his servants, and all his priests; let none be wanting: for I have a great sacrifice to do to Baal; whosoever shall be wanting, he shall not live. But Jehu did it in subtilty, to the intent that he might destroy the worshippers of Baal.
And Jehu said, Proclaim a solemn assembly for Baal. And they proclaimed it.
And Jehu sent through all Israel: and all the worshippers of Baal came, so that there was not a man left that came not. And they came into the house of Baal; and the house of Baal was full from one end to another.
And he said unto him that was over the vestry, Bring forth vestments for all the worshippers of Baal. And he brought them forth vestments.
And Jehu went, and Jehonadab the son of Rechab, into the house of Baal, and said unto the worshippers of Baal, Search, and look that there be here with you none of the servants of the LORD, but the worshippers of Baal only.
And when they went in to offer sacrifices and burnt offerings, Jehu appointed fourscore men without, and said, If any of the men whom I have brought into your hands escape, he that letteth him go, his life shall be for the life of him.
And it came to pass, as soon as he had made an end of offering the burnt offering, that Jehu said to the guard and to the captains, Go in, and slay them; let none come forth. And they smote them with the edge of the sword; and the guard and the captains cast them out, and went to the city of the house of Baal.
And they brought forth the images out of the house of Baal, and burned them.
And they brake down the image of Baal, and brake down the house of Baal, and made it a draught house unto this day.
Thus Jehu destroyed Baal out of Israel.” (2Ki. 10:16-28).
 
“The truth should be presented with divine tact, gentleness, and tenderness. It should come from a heart that has been softened and made sympathetic. We need to have close communion with God, lest self rise up, as it did in Jehu, and we pour forth a torrent of words that are unbefitting, that are not as dew or as the still showers that revive the withering plants. Let our words be gentle as we seek to win souls. God will be wisdom to him who seeks for wisdom from a divine source. We are to seek opportunities on every hand, we are to watch unto prayer, and be ready always to give a reason for the hope that is in us, with meekness and fear. Lest we shall impress unfavorably one soul for whom Christ died we should keep our hearts uplifted to God, so that when the opportunity presents itself, we may have the right word to speak at the right time. If you thus undertake work for God, the Spirit of God will be your helper. The Holy Spirit will apply the word spoken in love for the soul. The truth will have quickening power when spoken under the influence of the grace of Christ. 
     God’s plan is first to get at the heart. Speak the truth, and let Him carry forward the reformatory power and principle.” Testimonies for the church, vol. 6, p. 400.
 
“Jehu Religion Unsafe.--Men are slow to learn the lesson that the spirit manifested by Jehu will never bind hearts together. It is not safe for us to bind our interests with a Jehu religion; for this will result in bringing sadness of heart upon God’s true workers. God has not given to any of His servants the work of punishing those who will not heed His warnings and reproofs. When the Holy Spirit is abiding in the heart, it will lead the human agent to see his own defects of character, to pity the weakness of others, to forgive as he wishes to be forgiven. He will be pitiful, courteous, Christlike (Review and Herald April 10, 1900).  Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 2, p. 1038.
 
“If we would enter into the joy of our Lord, we must be colaborers with Him. With the love of Jesus warm in our hearts, we shall always see some way to reach the minds and hearts of others. It will make us unselfish, thoughtful, and kind; and kindness opens the door of hearts; gentleness is mightier far than a Jehu spirit.--Review and Herald, Feb. 10, 1885. Temperance, p. 221.
 
“As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God.” (1Pet. 2:16).