Today's Word

Praying for My Spouse

"But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord" (Joshua 24:15).

"Prayer is communion with God, the Fountain of wisdom, the Source of strength, and peace, and happiness" (Prayer, 272). "If ever there was a time when every house should be a house of prayer, it is now" (ibid, 192).

 

 

Before your sweetheart goes off to work or before you go to bed at night, spend time in prayer as a couple. Pray for and with each other (no kids allowed). You could even end with a hug or a kiss. It will definitely bind your hearts together in the Lord and strengthen your marriage as well. Prayer is a beautiful way to hold your spouse in your heart.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for my spouse. Fill him up with Your Spirit today. Give him the love that he needs to shine for You. He has his own struggles and burdens that many of us can't feel. But You see them; give him strength to carry them. He has temptations that batter him day after day. Give him Your strength to be a victorious Christian. Help Him to know how to lead our family as You would do. And draw us close together so we can be a whole family, serving You faithfully. In Jesus most loving name, I pray. Amen


Home of Praise

"I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High" (Psalm 9:2).

“Let everything that hath breath praise the Lord.” Have any of us duly considered how much we have to be thankful for? Do we remember that the mercies of the Lord are new every morning and that His faithfulness faileth not? Do we acknowledge our dependence upon Him and express gratitude for all His favors? On the contrary, we too often forget that “every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights...

Shall all our devotional exercises consist in asking and receiving? Shall we be always thinking of our wants and never of the benefits we receive? Shall we be recipients of His mercies and never express our gratitude to God, never praise Him for what He has done for us? We do not pray any too much, but we are too sparing of giving thanks. If the loving-kindness of God called forth more thanksgiving and praise, we would have far more power in prayer. We would abound more and more in the love of God and have more bestowed to praise Him for. (Testimonies to the Church, vol. 5, 315 and 317).

 

 

Start your day with a song of praise, one you know well or by using a songbook. Start a journal of praise by writing 3-5 new blessings you are thankful for. This could be a running list, but I find it helps me to begin my day by writing Jesus a letter filled with my thanksgiving.

Dear Heavenly Father, I praise You today for a brand new day to spend with You. Thank You for Your never-ending love that is always giving, and so undeserved! Thank You for loving me in spite of the many times I fall short and end up wandering from You. I praise You for Your love and compassion and never giving up on me. Thank You for such incredible love. Help me to grow in Your love today. Thank You for the gift of Your Spirit so I can love as You do. In the precious name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.


How to Have a Home of Communion with Jesus

Day 1

"My voice You shall hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning, I will direct it to you and I will look up." Psalm 5:3

Have you ever thought how you could have a deeper walk with Jesus in your home? Today, we're starting "30 Days of Home Communion with Christ." Each day gives us a new step with a Bible promise and a prayer for Jesus to help us come nearer to His side where we will find life and peace in Him.

 

 

Begin your day with Jesus. "Consecrate yourself to God in the morning; make this your first work. Let your prayer be, “Take me, O Lord, as wholly Thine. I lay all my plans at Thy feet. Use me today in Thy service. Abide with me, and let all my work be wrought in Thee.” This is a daily matter. Each morning consecrate yourself to God for that day. Surrender all your plans to Him, to be carried out or given up as His providence shall indicate. Thus day by day you may be giving your life into the hands of God, and thus your life will be molded more and more after the life of Christ" (Steps to Christ, 70).

Dear Heavenly Father, I give myself to You today. As I start this month of seeking to make my home a place of communion with You, I give myself fully to You. I lay all my time and plans at Your feet. Fill me with Your Spirit today so that all that I do will reflect Your love and Your will in my life. Keep my ears in tune to You all day long, so every moment I will remain in Your presence. In Jesus' most loving name, I ask this. Amen.



Holy Spirit Power

"But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth." Acts 1:8

The lapse of time has wrought no change in Christ’s parting promise to send the Holy Spirit as His representative. It is not because of any restriction on the part of God that the riches of His grace do not flow earthward to men. If the fulfillment of the promise is not seen as it might be, it is because the promise is not appreciated as it should be. If all were willing, all would be filled with the Spirit. Wherever the need of the Holy Spirit is a matter little thought of, there is seen spiritual drought, spiritual darkness, spiritual declension and death. Whenever minor matters occupy the attention, the divine power which is necessary for the growth and prosperity of the church, and which would bring all other blessings in its train, is lacking, though offered in infinite plenitude. 

 

 

Since this is the means by which we are to receive power, why do we not hunger and thirst for the gift of the Spirit? Why do we not talk of it, pray for it, and preach concerning it? The Lord is more willing to give the Holy Spirit to those who serve Him than parents are to give good gifts to their children. For the daily baptism of the Spirit every worker should offer his petition to God. Companies of Christian workers should gather to ask for special help, for heavenly wisdom, that they may know how to plan and execute wisely. Especially should they pray that God will baptize His chosen ambassadors in mission fields with a rich measure of His Spirit. The presence of the Spirit with God’s workers will give the proclamation of truth a power that not all the honor or glory of the world could give. 

With the consecrated worker for God, in whatever place he may be, the Holy Spirit abides. The words spoken to the disciples are spoken also to us. The Comforter is ours as well as theirs. The Spirit furnishes the strength that sustains striving, wrestling souls in every emergency, amidst the hatred of the world, and the realization of their own failures and mistakes. In sorrow and affliction, when the outlook seems dark and the future perplexing, and we feel helpless and alone,—these are the times when, in answer to the prayer of faith, the Holy Spirit brings comfort to the heart.

Acts of the Apostles, pg 50-51



More of You

“With great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.” Acts 4:33.

Under their labors were added to the church chosen men, who, receiving the word of truth, consecrated their lives to the work of giving to others the hope that filled their hearts with peace and joy. They could not be restrained or intimidated by threatenings. The Lord spoke through them, and as they went from place to place, the poor had the gospel preached to them, and miracles of divine grace were wrought. 

So mightily can God work when men give themselves up to the control of His Spirit. 

 

 

The promise of the Holy Spirit is not limited to any age or to any race. Christ declared that the divine influence of His Spirit was to be with His followers unto the end. From the Day of Pentecost to the present time, the Comforter has been sent to all who have yielded themselves fully to the Lord and to His service. To all who have accepted Christ as a personal Saviour, the Holy Spirit has come as a counselor, sanctifier, guide, and witness. The more closely believers have walked with God, the more clearly and powerfully have they testified of their Redeemer’s love and of His saving grace. The men and women who through the long centuries of persecution and trial enjoyed a large measure of the presence of the Spirit in their lives, have stood as signs and wonders in the world. Before angels and men they have revealed the transforming power of redeeming love.

Acts of the Apostles, pg 48-49



One with Jesus

"And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one." John 17:22

Our great need is unity. We have not one soul that can be spared. The Lord calls upon us to unify in harmony with Bible truth. This should be repeated over and over in the family and in the church.

 

 

Said Christ, “As the Father gave me commandment, even so I do” (John 14:31). He came to our world on a mission from the Father. He came to bridge the gulf that sin had made between God and man. There was to be made a provision for a reconciliation, for a union of the human with the divine nature. Christ would sanctify all who believe in Him. In the gift of Christ to our world, God has provided for everyone a power to overcome evil. He has given unto us “exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust” (2 Peter 1:4). 

The great apostasy originally began in a denial of the love of God, as it is plainly revealed in the Word. Provision was then made whereby fallen man might have a powerful revelation of the love of God, and be given an opportunity to return to his allegiance to Jehovah. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). “I lay down my life for the sheep,” says Christ (chap. 10:15). “The bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world” (chap. 6:51). Here is a revelation of the power mighty to save “to the uttermost.” God is light and love. 

After the war in the heavenly courts Satan and his followers were cast out. As human beings, we are subject to the crafty wiles and temptations of this fallen foe. And unless we are kept by the power of Christ, we shall certainly be led away by the satanic sophistries by which the world is flooded. Our safety is to lean not on human power, on the arm of flesh, but upon the divine arm. Those who are partakers of the divine nature will not be beguiled by Satan.

Upward Look, pg 149



Light Comes in Bright Rays

"Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all." 1 Timothy 4:15

We have been taught by God concerning the great plan of redemption. This should be to us a matter of earnest thanksgiving. God’s promises will never fail if we constantly watch unto prayer.

Our knowledge of the Scriptures should be practical. The Lord is pleased when those who are connected with Him are filled with a knowledge of His will. His servants should daily gain more knowledge of Him. Daily they should grow in grace and in spiritual understanding, strengthened with might according to His glorious power. They are to increase in spiritual efficiency, that they may give strength to the people of God. 

 

 

God does not ask sinners to enter His service with their natural traits of character, to make a failure before the heavenly universe and before the world...“Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). Wear My yoke, and in your daily experience you will find the rest which comes only to the obedient.

Christ invites all to come to Him, but when they come, they are to lay aside their sins. All their vices and follies, all their pride and worldliness, are to be laid at [the foot of] His cross. This He requires because He loves them, and desires to save them; not in their sins but from their sins. He who accepts the truth longs for transformation, and the light comes to him in bright rays.

The truth is to be believed and practiced, because Christ asserts it to be the word of the living God. The brightest beams of light from the threshold of heaven are thrown on the pathway in which God requires His people to walk. When sinners accept Christ as their personal Saviour, they realize the greatness of God’s gift to them, and praise and thanksgiving flow to the divine Giver. 

Upward Look, pg 169



Take Jesus at His Word

"All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out." John 6:37

All that Jesus asks of you is to accept the truth of the gospel just as it reads. Its requirements are plain and right to the point. All God requires of you is to believe His Word, to accept a “Thus says the Lord.” God’s requirements are His communications to His human family. He speaks to them as intelligent, reasoning agencies, who are responsible to render to Him the fruit of righteousness.

Will you take the Word of God just as it reads? 

 

Unrecognizable woman holding a bible in her hands and praying

 

We have only to come, complying with the invitation, “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink” (John 7:37). “The one who comes to me I will no wise cast out." Every human being, as he reads these words, should feel that he is on holy ground. Remember that the life of the only begotten Son of God was offered up for you. As the Holy Spirit impresses Christ’s words on the heart and mind, man must feel that he is in the presence of superior goodness, superseding immeasurably anything that earth can afford. He must feel that he is occupying holy ground, for he is close to the living fountain of mercy and love. 

To Moses, Jehovah declared, “I am that I am” (Exodus 3:14). Christ declared, “Before Abraham was, I am” (John 8:58). By this declaration He laid open the resources of His infinite nature, imparting in His words assurance of pardon for the guilty race. He is the Word, conscious of power that He can take up and lay down His life as He chooses [in order] to secure the salvation of those who have fallen under Satan’s falsehoods.

Having brought into the world the great treasures of heaven, owned and created by the eternal God, Christ can give to all eternal life. To all who believe on Him as their personal Saviour, He will give an eternal weight of glory.

Upward Look, pg 144



Grow Healthy In and Out

"I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.” John 6:51

For the health and vitality of the soul, the divine Physician has prescribed communion with Himself. We are to sit at His feet and learn of Him how to be meek and lowly in heart. Spiritual health is dependent on the food given to the mind and on the air which is breathed. The soul needs food, and in order to get this food, the Word of God must be studied.

 

 

 The breathing of pure air is essential for the cure of disease. And it is no less essential that the atmosphere we breathe in the spiritual life shall be pure. This is essential for a healthy growth in grace. Breathe the pure atmosphere which produces pure thoughts and noble words. Choose Christian society. The Christian will not have spiritual health unless he is guarded in regard to his associations.

Every Christian who is indeed a Christian must grow. He must constantly increase in wisdom and knowledge. Day by day he must approach more nearly to the full stature of a man in Christ Jesus. In order to be a follower of the Master, he must grow. He must advance into a deeper appreciation of the love of God and a clearer knowledge of His will. If his light does not shine more and more brightly, his faith becomes weak, his love grows feeble. 

Exercise is essential to growth in grace. When the spiritually diseased are given exercise in spiritual things, there is a transformation of character. The health of the spiritual life is dependent upon exercise. But spirituality cannot grow while the heart is full of the corrupting sores of selfishness. The soul must be cleansed and purified by the refining grace of God. The channel of communication between earth and heaven must be kept free from all obstruction, that the soul may receive from Christ a supply of living water. And every spiritual muscle and sinew must be put to the tax. God has given us many opportunities to work for Him. Unless we improve these opportunities, we cannot be growing Christians. When Christ is formed within, the hope of glory, a decided change will be seen in the religious experience of professing Christians.

Upward Look, pg 174



Run to Win

"Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it." 1 Corinthians 9:24

Heaven’s resources are limitless, and they are all at our command...Are there not presented before Christ’s followers the highest virtues to be cultivated, the greatest honors to be gained? God calls upon them to enter upon a race in which everyone may win. He calls upon them to enlist in a warfare in which everyone may be a conqueror. A robe of righteousness and a crown of everlasting life—this is the reward held out before the overcomer.

 

 

When the Christian takes his baptismal vow, divine help is pledged to him. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit stand ready to work in his behalf. God places at his command the resources of heaven, that he may be an overcomer. His own power is small, but God is omnipotent, and God is his helper. Daily he is to make known his wants at the throne of grace. By faith and trust, by availing himself of the resources provided, he will come off more than conqueror. Why, then, should not those who are fighting against the powers of darkness, move forward with faith and courage? God and Christ and the Holy Spirit are on their side...

God calls upon those who claim to have a knowledge of the truth to show by unquestioning obedience that they are faithful soldiers of the cross. Let not those who stand under the bloodstained banner of Prince Emmanuel do anything that will dishonor the cause for which they are fighting. Christ expects His soldiers to be brave and loyal and true. 

The work that Christ did on this earth His followers are to do. With the power and efficiency brought by the Holy Spirit they are to carry forward His plan for the restoration of the divine image in humanity. The Lord will do great things for them when they work under the Holy Spirit’s guidance. But they must place their entire dependence on God.

Upward Look, pg 173



Step by Step

"Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified." 1 Corinthians 9:26-27

God leads His people on step by step. The Christian life is a battle and a march. In this warfare there is no release; the effort must be continuous and persevering. It is by unceasing endeavor that we maintain the victory over the temptations of Satan. Christian integrity must be sought with resistless energy and maintained with a resolute fixedness of purpose.

 

 

There is a science of Christianity to be mastered—a science as much deeper, broader, higher than any human science as the heavens are higher than the earth. The mind is to be disciplined, educated, trained; for we are to do service for God in ways that are not in harmony with inborn inclination. There are hereditary and cultivated tendencies to evil that must be overcome. Often the training and education of a lifetime must be discarded, that one may become a learner in the school of Christ. Our hearts must be educated to become steadfast in God. We are to form habits of thought that will enable us to resist temptation. We must learn to look upward. The principles of the Word of God—principles that are as high as heaven, and that compass eternity—we are to understand in their bearing upon our daily life. Every act, every word, every thought, is to be in accord with these principles.

The precious graces of the Holy Spirit are not developed in a moment. Courage, fortitude, meekness, faith, unwavering trust in God’s power to save, are acquired by the experience of years. By a life of holy endeavor and firm adherence to the right the children of God are to seal their destiny. 

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 68



Hold On!

"For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light." 2 Corinthians 11:13-14

The truth is efficient, and through obedience its power changes the mind into the image of Jesus. It is the truth as it is in Jesus that quickens the conscience and transforms the mind; for it is accompanied to the heart by the Holy Spirit. There are many, who, lacking spiritual discernment, take the bare letter of the Word, and find that unaccompanied by the Spirit of God, it quickens not the soul, it sanctifies not the heart. One may be able to quote from the Old and the New Testament, may be familiar with the commands and promises of the Word of God; but unless the Holy Spirit sends the truth home to the heart, enlightening the mind with divine light, no soul falls upon the Rock and is broken; for it is the divine agency that connects the soul with God. 

 

Unrecognizable woman holding a bible in her hands and praying

 

Without the enlightenment of the Spirit of God, we shall not be able to discern truth from error, and shall fall under the masterful temptations and deceptions that Satan will bring upon the world. We are near the close of the controversy between the Prince of light and the prince of darkness, and soon the delusions of the enemy will try our faith, of what sort it is. Satan will work miracles in the sight of the beast, and deceive “them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast” (Revelation 13:14).

But though the prince of darkness will work to cover the earth with darkness, and with gross darkness the people, the Lord will manifest His converting power. A work is to be accomplished in the earth similar to that which took place at the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the days of the early disciples, when they preached Jesus and Him crucified. Many will be converted in a day; for the message will go with power. It can then be said: “Our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost” (1 Thessalonians 1:5). It is the Holy Spirit that draws men to Christ; for He takes of the things of God, and shows them unto the sinner. Jesus said: “He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you” (John 16:14).

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 126



Light in the Darkness

"For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect." Matthew 24:24

In these days of delusion, everyone who is established in the truth will have to contend for the faith once delivered to the saints. Every variety of error will be brought out in the mysterious working of Satan, which would, if it were possible, deceive the very elect, and turn them from the truth. There will be human wisdom to meet—the wisdom of learned men, who, as were the Pharisees, are teachers of the law of God, but do not obey the law themselves. There will be human ignorance and folly to meet in disconnected theories arrayed in new and fantastic dress—theories that it will be all the more difficult to meet because there is no reason in them. 

 

 

There will be false dreams and false visions, which have some truth, but lead away from the original faith. The Lord has given men a rule by which to detect them: “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20). If they belittle the law of God, if they pay no heed to His will as revealed in the testimonies of His Spirit, they are deceivers. They are controlled by impulse and impressions, which they believe to be from the Holy Spirit, and consider more reliable than the Inspired Word. They claim that every thought and feeling is an impression of the Spirit; and when they are reasoned with out of the Scriptures, they declare that they have something more reliable. But while they think that they are led by the Spirit of God, they are in reality following an imagination wrought upon by Satan.

Satan will work in a most subtle manner to introduce human inventions clothed with angel garments. But the light from the Word is shining amid the moral darkness; and the Bible will never be superseded by miraculous manifestations. The truth must be studied, it must be searched for as hidden treasure. Wonderful illuminations will not be given aside from the Word, or to take the place of it. Cling to the Word, receive the ingrafted Word, which will make men wise unto salvation.

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 119



In Tune with the Spirit

"Open my eyes, that I may see wondrous things from Your Law." Psalm 119:18

The Bible should never be studied without prayer. The Holy Spirit alone can cause us to feel the importance of those things easy to be understood or prevent us from wresting truths difficult of comprehension. It is the office of heavenly angels to prepare the heart so to comprehend God’s Word that we shall be charmed with its beauty, admonished by its warnings, or animated and strengthened by its promises. We should make the psalmist’s petition our own: “Open my eyes, that I may see wondrous things from Your Law.”

 

Unrecognizable woman holding a bible in her hands and praying

 

Temptations often appear irresistible because, through neglect of prayer and the study of the Bible, the tempted one cannot readily remember God’s promises and meet Satan with the Scripture weapons. But angels are round about those who are willing to be taught in divine things; and in the time of great necessity they will bring to their remembrance the very truths which are needed. Thus “when the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him” (Isaiah 59:19). 

Jesus promised His disciples: “The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you” (John 14:26). But the teachings of Christ must previously have been stored in the mind in order for the Spirit of God to bring them to our remembrance in the time of peril. “Thy word have I hid in mine heart,” said David, “that I might not sin against thee” (Psalm 119:11).

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 112



Fill Me Up, Lord!

"But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us." 2 Corinthians 4:7

The question has been asked, What kind of vessels does the Spirit use? What does Christ say?—“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). What kind of vessels are suitable for the Master’s use? Empty vessels. When we empty the soul of every defilement, we are ready for use. 

 

 

Are we emptied of self? Are we cured of selfish planning? Oh, for less self-occupation! May the Lord purify His people, teachers, and churches. He has given a rule for the guidance of all, and from this there can be no careless departure. But there has been, and still is, a swerving from righteous principles. How long shall this condition of things exist? How can the Master use us as vessels for holy service until we empty ourselves, and make room for His Spirit to work?

God calls for His people to reveal Him. Shall the world manifest principles of integrity that the church does not maintain? Shall a selfish ambition to be first be shown by the followers of Christ? Shall not the principles cherished by them be laid upon the true foundation, even Christ Jesus? What material shall we place upon this foundation, that there may no longer be antagonism, but unity, in the church? Shall we bring to it wood, hay, stubble? Shall we not rather bring the most precious material—gold, silver, precious stones? Shall we not distinguish sharply between the chaff and the wheat? Shall we not realize that we must receive the Holy Spirit in our hearts, that it may mold and fashion the life?

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 111



Teach Me, Lord!

"Stand in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where the good way is and walk in it; then you will find rest for your souls." Jeremiah 6:16

After asking the Lord for a knowledge of His will, for heavenly wisdom, for the light of the Holy Spirit, the petitioner will search the Scriptures, and find that passages that were dark to his mind have suddenly grown clear, and he understands his duty as never before. Jesus said: “My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me. If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself” (John 7:16, 17). 

 

 

The knowledge of divine truth is promised to those who will render obedience to the light and truth that have been given to them. An entrance into the strait gate is not dependent upon the possession of learning or riches, but it is dependent upon the possession of a teachable spirit. He who appreciates the first ray of heavenly light, and appropriates it, and walks in it, bringing his actions into harmony with that ray, and becoming sanctified through it, will receive yet more light. He will understand that the gospel is the plan of salvation.

He who has an obedient heart, that is ready to do the will of God, will not only gladly receive truth, but will earnestly seek for truth as for hidden treasure. He will come to the Scriptures with a humble and teachable spirit, seeking to understand how he may walk in the light, and saying, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” (Acts 9:6). He is ready to sacrifice anything and everything, if required, in order that he may be in harmony with the will of God.

It is not always an easy matter to render obedience to the will of God. It demands firmness of purpose to enter in at the strait gate and to travel in the narrow path that leads to eternal life, for on every hand are voices inviting the soul into bye and forbidden paths. Those who love wealth and honor and high position will not enter in at the strait gate unless they part with their idols. There is not room to enter in at the strait gate and carry the things of this world along. 

He who would enter in at the strait gate must make an entire consecration of his all to God. Jesus says, “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me” (Matthew 16:24).

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 110



You are not Alone

"Let him take hold of My peace that he may make peace wit Me and he shall make peace with Me." Isaiah 27:5

For every trial, God has provided help. When Israel in the desert came to the bitter waters of Marah, Moses cried unto the Lord. The Lord did not provide some new remedy; He called attention to that which was at hand. A shrub which He had created was to be cast into the fountain to make the water pure and sweet. When this was done, the people drank of the water and were refreshed. In every trial, if we seek Him, Christ will give us help. Our eyes will be opened to discern the healing promises recorded in His Word. The Holy Spirit will teach us how to appropriate every blessing that will be an antidote for grief. For every bitter draft that is placed to our lips, we shall find a branch of healing.

 

 

We are not to let the future, with its hard problems, its unsatisfying prospects, make our hearts faint, our knees tremble, our hands hang down. "Let him take hold of My strength," says the Mighty One, "that he may make peace with Me; and he shall make peace with Me." Isaiah 27:5. Those who surrender their lives to His guidance and to His service will never be placed in a position for which He has not made provision. Whatever our situation, if we are doers of His Word, we have a Guide to direct our way; whatever our perplexity, we have a sure Counselor; whatever our sorrow, bereavement, or loneliness, we have a sympathizing Friend.

If in our ignorance we make missteps, the Savior des not forsake us. We need never feel that we are alone. Angels are our companions. The Comforter that Christ promised to send in His name abides with us. In the way that leads to the City of God there are no difficulties which those who trust in im may not overcome. There are no dangers which they may not escape. Thre is not a sorrow, not a grievance, not a human weakness, for which He has not provided a remedy...

Satan may come to you with the cruel suggestion, "Yours is a hopeless case. You are irredeemable." But there is hope for you in Christ. God does not bid us overcome in our own strength. He asks us to come close to His side. Whatever difficulties we labor uner, which weight down soul and body, He waits to make us free.

The Ministry of Healing, pp. 248-249



Search for Truth

"You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me." John 5:39

Christ came in the form of humanity to live the law of God. He was the Word of life. He came to be the gospel of salvation to the world, and to fulfill every specification of the law. Jesus is the word, the guidebook, which must be received and obeyed in every particular. How necessary that this mine of truth be explored, and the precious treasures of truth be discovered and secured as rich jewels.

 

 

The incarnation of Christ, His divinity, His atonement, His wonderful life in heaven as our advocate, the office of the Holy Spirit—all these living, vital themes of Christianity are revealed from Genesis to Revelation. The golden links of truth form a chain of evangelical truth, and the first, and staple, is found in the great teachings of Christ Jesus. Why, then, should not the Scriptures be ennobled and exalted in every school in our land? How little children are educated to study the Bible as the Word of God, and feed upon its truths, which are the flesh and blood of the Son of God! 

“Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whosoever eats my flesh, and drinks my blood [that is, continues to receive the words of Christ and practice them], has eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He that eats my flesh, and drinks my blood, dwells in me, and I in him” (John 6:53-56), “and he that keeps his commandments dwells in Him, and He in him. And hereby we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit which He has given to us” (1 John 3:24). 

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 106.



God's Grace Is Enough

"And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9

You may be disappointed, and your will and your way may be denied; but be assured that the Lord loves you. The furnace fire may kindle upon you, not for the purpose of destroying you, but to consume the dross, that you may come forth as gold seven times purified. Bear in mind that God will give you songs in the night. Darkness may seem to enclose you, but you are not to look at the clouds. Beyond the darkest cloud there is an ever-shining light.

 

 

The Lord has light for every soul. Open the door of the heart to hope, peace, and joy. Jesus says, “These things have I spoken unto you, that My joy might remain in you, and that your joy may be full” (John 15:11).

God has a special work for everyone to do, and each one of us may do well the work which God has assigned him. The only thing we have to fear on our part is that we shall not keep our eyes continually fixed upon Jesus, that we shall not have an eye single to the glory of God, so that if we were called to lay down our armor and sleep in death we might not be ready to give an account of our trust. Forget not for a moment that you are Christ’s property, bought with an infinite price, and that you are to glorify Him in your spirit, and in your body, which are His.

God has provided a balm for every wound. There is a Balm in Gilead, there is a Physician there. Will you not now as never before study the Scriptures? Seek the Lord for wisdom in every emergency. In every trial plead with Jesus to show you a way out of your troubles, then your eyes will be opened to behold the remedy and to apply to your case the healing promises that have been recorded in His Word. In this way the enemy will find no place to lead you into mourning and unbelief, but instead you will have faith and hope and courage in the Lord. The Holy Spirit will give you clear discernment that you may see and appropriate every blessing that will act as an antidote to grief, as a branch of healing to every draught of bitterness that is placed to your lips.

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 135



Even When You Mess Up

"My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous." 1 John 2:1

Those who are in connection with God are channels for the power of the Holy Spirit. If one who daily communes with God errs from the path, if he turns a moment from looking steadfastly unto Jesus, it is not because he sins willfully; for when he sees his mistake, he turns again, and fastens his eyes upon Jesus, and the fact that he has erred does not make him less dear to the heart of God. He knows that he has communion with the Savior; and when reproved for his mistake in some matter of judgment, he does not walk sullenly, and complain of God, but turns the mistake into a victory. He learns a lesson from the words of the Master, and takes heed that he be not again deceived. 

 

 

Those who truly love God have internal evidence that they are beloved of God, that they have communion with Christ, that their hearts are warmed with fervent love toward Him. The truth for this time is believed with sound confidence. They can say with all assurance, “We have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty.... We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto you do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the Day Star arises in your hearts” (2 Peter 1:16-19). 

The inner life of the soul will reveal itself in the outward conduct. Let the Word of God bear its testimony in behalf of the messenger whom God hath sent with a message in these last days to prepare a people to stand in the day of the Lord. “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that brings good tidings, that publishes peace; that brings good tidings of good, that publishes salvation; that says unto Zion, Your God reigns!” (Isaiah 52:7).

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 134



Ask, Knock, and Praise the Lord

Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened." Matthew 7:7-8

Then come, and seek, and find. The reservoir of power is open, is full and free. Come with humble hearts, not thinking that you must do some good thing to merit the favor of God, or that you must make yourself better before you can come to Christ. You can never do anything to better your condition. In the name of Jesus, come with full assurance of faith, because you are a sinner. For Christ said, “I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (Matthew 9:13). Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. You are to ask, to seek, to knock, and to believe that you are accepted through Christ Jesus, trusting Him alone to do those things for you which you can never do for yourself.

 

 

Jesus is our atoning sacrifice. We can make no atonement for ourselves, but by faith we can accept the atonement that has been made. “For Christ also has once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God” (1 Peter 3:18). “You were not redeemed with corruptible things, ... but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:18, 19). “The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7). It is by virtue of this precious blood that the sin-stricken soul can be restored to soundness. While you are putting up your petition to God, the Holy Spirit applies the faithful promises of God to your heart. 

In moments of perplexity, when Satan suggests doubt and discouragement, the Spirit of the Lord will lift up as a standard against him the faithful sayings of Christ and the bright beams of the Sun of righteousness will flash into your mind and soul. When Satan would overwhelm you with despair, the Holy Spirit will point you to the intercession made for you by a living Savior. Christ is the fragrance, the holy incense, which makes your petitions acceptable to the Father. When the light of Christ’s righteousness is fully understood and accepted, love, joy, peace, and inexpressible gratitude will pervade the soul, and the language of him who is blessed will be “Your gentleness has made me great” (Psalm 18:35).

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg. 133



Surrounded by a Divine Shield

"Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify Me." Psalm 50:15

When trials arise that seem unexplainable, we should not allow our peace to be spoiled. However unjustly we may be treated, let not passion arise. By indulging a spirit of retaliation we injure ourselves. We destroy our own confidence in God, and grieve the Holy Spirit. There is by our side a Witness, a heavenly Messenger, who will lift up for us a standard against the enemy. He will shut us in with the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness. Beyond this Satan cannot penetrate. He cannot pass this shield of holy light. 

 

 

While the world is progressing in wickedness, none of us need flatter ourselves that we shall have no difficulties. But it is these very difficulties that bring us into the audience chamber of the Most High. 

The Lord says, “Call upon me in the day of trouble” (Psalm 50:15). He invites us to present to Him our perplexities and necessities, and our need of divine help. He bids us be instant in prayer. As soon as difficulties arise, we are to offer to Him our sincere, earnest petitions. By our importunate prayers we give evidence of our strong confidence in God. The sense of our need leads us to pray earnestly, and our heavenly Father is moved by our supplications. 

Often those who suffer reproach or persecution for their faith are tempted to think themselves forsaken by God. In the eyes of men they are in the minority. To all appearance their enemies triumph over them. But let them not violate their conscience. He who has suffered in their behalf, and has borne their sorrows and afflictions, has not forsaken them. 

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 132



The Bible and the Spirit

"I shall delight in Your statutes; I will never forget Your Word!" Psalm 119:16, NASB

In His Word, God has committed to men the knowledge necessary for salvation. The Holy Scriptures are to be accepted as an authoritative, infallible revelation of His will. They are the standard of character, the revealer of doctrines, and the test of experience. “Every scripture inspired of God is also profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for instruction which is in righteousness: that the man of God may be complete, furnished completely unto every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16, 17, RV). 

Yet the fact that God has revealed His will to men through His Word has not rendered needless the continued presence and guiding of the Holy Spirit. On the contrary, the Spirit was promised by our Savior, to open the Word to His servants, to illuminate and apply its teachings. And since it was the Spirit of God that inspired the Bible, it is impossible that the teaching of the Spirit should ever be contrary to that of the Word. 

 

 

The Spirit was not given—nor can it ever be bestowed—to supersede the Bible; for the Scriptures explicitly state that the Word of God is the standard by which all teaching and experience must be tested. Says the apostle John, “Believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1). And Isaiah declares, “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20). 

Great reproach has been cast upon the work of the Holy Spirit by the errors of a class that, claiming its enlightenment, profess to have no further need of guidance from the Word of God. They are governed by impressions which they regard as the voice of God in the soul. But the spirit that controls them is not the Spirit of God. This following of impressions, to the neglect of the Scriptures, can lead only to confusion, to deception and ruin. It serves only to further the designs of the evil one. 

Since the ministry of the Holy Spirit is of vital importance to the church of Christ, it is one of the devices of Satan, through the errors of extremists and fanatics, to cast contempt upon the work of the Spirit and cause the people of God to neglect this source of strength which our Lord Himself has provided.

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg. 122



Foolproof Direction

"For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect." Matthew 24:24

In these days of delusion, everyone who is established in the truth will have to contend for the faith once delivered to the saints. Every variety of error will be brought out in the mysterious working of Satan, which would, if it were possible, deceive the very elect, and turn them from the truth. There will be human wisdom to meet—the wisdom of learned men, who, as were the Pharisees, are teachers of the law of God, but do not obey the law themselves. There will be human ignorance and folly to meet in disconnected theories arrayed in new and fantastic dress—theories that it will be all the more difficult to meet because there is no reason in them. 

 

 

There will be false dreams and false visions, which have some truth, but lead away from the original faith. The Lord has given men a rule by which to detect them: “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20). If they belittle the law of God, if they pay no heed to His will as revealed in the testimonies of His Spirit, they are deceivers. They are controlled by impulse and impressions, which they believe to be from the Holy Spirit, and consider more reliable than the Inspired Word. They claim that every thought and feeling is an impression of the Spirit; and when they are reasoned with out of the Scriptures, they declare that they have something more reliable. But while they think that they are led by the Spirit of God, they are in reality following an imagination wrought upon by Satan.—Selected Messages 2:98, 99. 

Satan will work in a most subtle manner to introduce human inventions clothed with angel garments. But the light from the Word is shining amid the moral darkness; and the Bible will never be superseded by miraculous manifestations. The truth must be studied, it must be searched for as hidden treasure. Wonderful illuminations will not be given aside from the Word, or to take the place of it. Cling to the Word, receive the ingrafted Word, which will make men wise unto salvation.

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg. 119



This is the Way

"To the Law and to the Testimony! If they do not speak according to this Word, it is because there is no light in them." Isaiah 8:20

The Holy Spirit always leads to the written Word, and calls the attention to the great moral standard of righteousness. To be honored of God in thus being privileged to testify of the truth is a wonderful thing. Said Christ to His disciples just before He ascended up and the clouds of angels received Him out of their sight, “Ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth” (Acts 1:8). They were qualified by the heavenly endowment of the Holy Spirit to testify of Christ. 

 

 

I wish to impress upon you the fact that those who have Jesus abiding in the heart by faith have actually received the Holy Spirit. Every individual who receives Jesus as his personal Saviour just as surely receives the Holy Spirit to be his Counselor, Sanctifier, Guide, and Witness. The more closely the believer walks with God, the clearer his witness, and, as a sure result, the more powerful will be the influence of his testimony upon others of a Savior’s love; the more he will give evidence that he prizes the Word of God. It is his meat, it is his drink, to satisfy the thirsty soul. He prizes the privilege of learning the will of God from His Word. 

Some souls who claim to be believers have slighted, and turned from, the Word of God. They have neglected the Bible, the wonderful Guidebook, the true tester of all ideas, and claim that they have the Spirit to teach them, that this renders searching the Scriptures unnecessary. All such are heeding the sophistry of Satan, for the Spirit and the Word agree. Say the Scriptures, “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” He only is a free man whom the truth makes free.

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 118



In Every Word

"She opens her mouth with wisdom and on her tongue is the law of kindness" (Proverbs 31:26).

The Lord will help every one of us where we need help the most in the grand work of overcoming and conquering self. Let the law of kindness be upon your lips and the oil of grace in your heart. This will produce wonderful results. You will be tender, sympathetic, courteous. You need all these graces. The Holy Spirit must be received and brought into your character; then it will be as holy fire, giving forth incense which will rise up to God, not from lips that condemn, but as a healer of the souls of men. Your countenance will express the image of the divine. 

 

 

No sharp, critical, blunt, or severe words should be spoken. This is common fire, and must be left out of all our councils and intercourse with our brethren. God requires every soul in His service to kindle their censers from the coals of sacred fire. The common, severe, harsh words that come from your lips so readily must be withheld, and the Spirit of God speak through the human agent. By beholding the character of Christ you will become changed into His likeness. The grace of Christ alone can change your heart and then you will reflect the image of the Lord Jesus. God calls upon us to be like Him—pure, holy, and undefiled. We are to bear the divine image.

We may talk of the blessings of the Holy Spirit, and pray in regard to receiving them; but unless the human agent is worked by the Spirit of God, He reveals that he has Him not. When the Spirit molds and fashions the character after the divine similitude, He will be unmistakably revealed in every word we speak and in everything we do, showing to the world that there is a marked difference between the children of light and the children of darkness. The Lord wants us to stand stiffly for the faith once delivered to the saints. We are to speak the truth in love. Our great Teacher says, “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:29, 30).

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 81



All to the Glory of God

"Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." 1 Corinthians 10:31

God calls for a living sacrifice. The body, He tells us, is the temple of the Holy Ghost, the habitation of His Spirit, and He requires all who bear His image to take care of their bodies for the purpose of His service and His glory. “Ye are not your own,” says the inspired apostle, “ye are bought with a price”; wherefore “glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1 Corinthians 6:19, 20). In order to do this, add to virtue knowledge, and to knowledge temperance, and to temperance patience. 

 

 

It is a duty to know how to preserve the body in the very best condition of health, and it is a sacred duty to live up to the light which God has graciously given. If we close our eyes to the light for fear we shall see our wrongs, which we are unwilling to forsake, our sins are not lessened but increased. If light is turned from in one case, it will be disregarded in another. 

It is just as much sin to violate the laws of our being as to break one of the Ten Commandments, for we cannot do either without breaking God’s law. We cannot love the Lord with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength while we are loving our appetites, our tastes, a great deal better than we love the Lord. We are daily lessening our strength to glorify God, when He requires all our strength, all our mind. By our wrong habits we are lessening our hold on life, and yet professing to be Christ’s followers, preparing for the finishing touch of immortality.

Closely examine your own hearts, and in your lives imitate the unerring Pattern, and all will be well with you. Preserve a clear conscience before God. In all you do glorify His name.

Ye Shall Receive Power, pg 79



The Fruit of Gentleness

"With all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love." Ephesians 4:2

I invite you to look to the Man of Calvary. Look to Him whose head was crowned with the crown of thorns, who bore the cross of shame, who went step by step down the path of humiliation. Look to Him who was a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief, who was despised and rejected of men. “Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows” (Isaiah 53:4). “He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed” (verse 5). Look to Calvary until your heart melts at the amazing love of the Son of God. He left nothing undone that fallen man might be elevated and purified. 

 

 

And shall we not confess Him? Will the religion of Christ degrade its receiver? No; it will be no degradation to follow in the footsteps of the Man of Calvary. Day by day let us sit at the feet of Jesus, and learn of Him, that in our conversation, our conduct, our dress, and in all our affairs, we may reveal the fact that Jesus is ruling and reigning over us. God calls upon us to walk in a path that has been cast up for the ransomed of the Lord; we are not to walk in the world. We are to surrender all to God, and confess Christ before men. 

“Whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 10:33). What right have we to profess to be Christians, and yet deny our Lord in life and deed? “He that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it” (verses 38, 39). Day by day we are to deny self, to lift the cross and follow in the footsteps of the Master. 

Oh, that the baptism of the Holy Spirit might come upon you, that you might be imbued with the Spirit of God! Then day by day you will become more and more conformed to the image of Christ, and in every action of your life, the question would be, “Will it glorify my Master?” 

Ye Shall Receive Power, 78



The Fruit of Heaven

"The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self control." Galatians 5:22-23

If we have Christ abiding with us, we shall be Christians at home as well as abroad. He who is a Christian will have kind words for his relatives and associates. He will be kind, courteous, loving, sympathetic, and will be educating himself for an abode with the family above. If he is a member of the royal family, he will represent the kingdom to which he is going. He will speak with gentleness to his children, for he will realize that they, too, are heirs of God, members of the heavenly court. Among the children of God no spirit of harshness dwells; for “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” The spirit that is cherished in the home is the spirit that will be manifested in the church. 

 

 

Oh, we must educate the soul to be pitiful, gentle, tender, full of forgiveness and compassion. While we lay aside all vanity, all foolish talking, jesting, and joking, we are not to become cold, unsympathetic, and unsocial. The Spirit of the Lord is to rest upon you until you shall be like a fragrant flower from the garden of God. You are to keep talking of the light, of Jesus, the Sun of righteousness, until you shall change from glory to glory, from character to character, going on from strength to strength, and reflecting more and more of the precious image of Jesus. When you do this, the Lord will write in the books of heaven, “Well done,” because you represent Jesus. 

Christians should not be hard-hearted, unapproachable; Jesus is to be reflected in our deportment, and we are to have a character beautiful with the graces of heaven. The presence of God is to be an abiding presence with us; and wherever we are, we are to carry light to the world. Those around you are to realize that the atmosphere of heaven surrounds you.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 75



The Fruit of Joy

"I will praise you, O Lord, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works. I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High!" Psalm 9:1-2

We must have more faith. Let us begin to believe unto salvation. Let us come to God in faith, fully assured that as we surrender all to Him, He will make us Christlike in character. We must tell this to all over and over again. Then, one with Christ, we can reveal Him to the world.  

 

 

Let us honor God by showing firm faith and unswerving trust. Let us remember that He is not glorified by the manifestation of a fretful, unhappy spirit. The Lord cares for the flowers. He gives them beauty and fragrance. Will He not much more give us the fragrance of a cheerful disposition? Will He not restore in us the divine image? Then let us have faith in Him. Let us now, just now, place ourselves where He can give us His Holy Spirit. Then we can give to the world a revelation of what true religion does for men and women. The joy of a Saviour filling our hearts gives us that peace and confidence which enables us to say, “I know that my Redeemer liveth” (Job 19:25). {YRP 72.3}

In His Word the Lord has made it plain that His people are a joyful people. True faith reaches up the hand and lays hold upon the One who is behind the promise “Great shall be the peace of thy children” (Isaiah 54:13). “Thus saith the Lord, Behold, I will extend peace to her like a river” (Isaiah 66:12). “Behold I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy” (Isaiah 65:18). In God we may “rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory” (1 Peter 1:8). “Men shall be blessed in him: all nations shall call him blessed” (Psalm 72:17). Let us strive to educate the believers to rejoice in the Lord. Spiritual joy is the result of active faith.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 72



The Fruit of Love

"Behold, what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God!" 1 John 3:1

No language can express this love; we can describe but a faint degree of love that passeth knowledge. It would require the language of the Infinite to express the love that has made it possible for us to be called the sons of God. In becoming a Christian, a man does not step down. There is no shame in having connection with the living God. 

 

 

Jesus bore the humiliation and shame and reproach that justly belonged to the sinner. He was the Majesty of heaven, He was the King of glory, He was equal with the Father; and yet He clothed His divinity with humanity, that humanity might touch humanity, that divinity might lay hold of divinity. Had He come as an angel, He could not have been a partaker with us of our sufferings, could not have been tempted in all points like as we are, He could not have sympathized with our sorrows; but He came in the garb of our humanity, that as our substitute and surety, He might overcome the prince of darkness in our behalf, and make us victors through His merits. 

As we stand under the shadow of the cross of Calvary, the inspiration of His love fills our hearts. When I look upon Him whom my sins have pierced, the inspiration from on high comes upon me; and this inspiration may come upon each one of you through the Holy Spirit. Unless you receive the Holy Spirit, you cannot have the love of God in the soul; but through a living connection with Christ, we are inspired with love and zeal and earnestness. 

We are not as a block of marble, which may reflect the light of the sun, but cannot be imbued with life. We are capable of responding to the bright beams of the Sun of righteousness; for as Christ illuminates our souls, He gives light and life. 

Ye Shall Receive Power, 71



The First Fruit

"Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin." Psalm 51:1, 2

Repentance is one of the first fruits of saving grace. Our great Teacher, in His lessons to erring, fallen man, presents the life-giving power of His grace, declaring that through this grace men and women may live the new life of holiness and purity. He who lives this life works out the principles of the kingdom of heaven. Taught of God, he leads others in straight paths. He will not lead the lame into paths of uncertainty. The working of the Holy Spirit in his life shows that he is a partaker of the divine nature. Every soul thus worked by the Spirit of Christ receives so abundant a supply of the rich grace that, beholding his good works, the unbelieving world acknowledges that he is controlled and sustained by divine power, and is led to glorify God.

 

 

There are those who, notwithstanding all the gracious invitation of Christ, continue to reveal ungodliness in their lives. To such ones God says: “How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? ... Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you” (Proverbs 1:22, 23).

Repentance for sin is the first fruits of the working of the Holy Spirit in the life. It is the only process by which infinite purity reflects the image of Christ in His redeemed subjects. In Christ all fullness dwells. Science that is not in harmony with Him is of no value. He teaches us to count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus our Lord. This knowledge is the highest science that any man can reach.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 70

He Became Sin for Us

"Reproach hath broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none." Psalm 69:20

The spotless Son of God hung upon the cross, His flesh lacerated with stripes; those hands so often reached out in blessing, nailed to the wooden bars; those feet so tireless on ministries of love, spiked to the tree; that royal head pierced by the crown of thorns; those quivering lips shaped to the cry of woe. And all that He endured—the blood drops that flowed from His head, His hands, His feet, the agony that racked His frame, and the unutterable anguish that filled His soul at the hiding of His Father’s face—speaks to each child of humanity, declaring, It is for thee that the Son of God consents to bear this burden of guilt; for thee He spoils the domain of death, and opens the gates of Paradise.

 

 

In the sufferings of Christ upon the cross prophecy was fulfilled. Centuries before the crucifixion, the Savior had foretold the treatment He was to receive. He said, “Dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have enclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet. I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me. They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.” The prophecy concerning His garments was carried out without counsel or interference from the friends or the enemies of the Crucified One. To the soldiers who had placed Him upon the cross, His clothing was given. Christ heard the men’s contention as they parted the garments among them. His tunic was woven throughout without seam, and they said, “Let us not rend it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be.” 

To those who suffered death by the cross, it was permitted to give a stupefying potion, to deaden the sense of pain. This was offered to Jesus; but when He had tasted it, He refused it. He would receive nothing that could becloud His mind. His faith must keep fast hold upon God. This was His only strength. To becloud His senses would give Satan an advantage. 

The enemies of Jesus vented their rage upon Him as He hung upon the cross. Priests, rulers, and scribes joined with the mob in mocking the dying Saviour. At the baptism and at the transfiguration the voice of God had been heard proclaiming Christ as His Son. Again, just before Christ’s betrayal, the Father had spoken, witnessing to His divinity. But now the voice from heaven was silent. No testimony in Christ’s favor was heard. Alone He suffered abuse and mockery from wicked men. For you. For me.



Bringing All Other Blessings

"You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you." John 15:16

The promise with which Jesus consoled His disciples just before His betrayal and crucifixion was that of the Holy Spirit; and in the doctrine of divine influence and agency, what riches were revealed to them; for this blessing would bring in its train all other blessings. The Holy Spirit breathes upon the soul who humbly rests in Christ as the author and finisher of his faith; and from such a believer fruit will come forth unto life eternal. His influence will be fragrant, and the name of Jesus will be music in his ears, and melody in his heart. 

 

 

The Christian will be a savor of life unto life to others, although he may not be able to explain the mysteries of his experience. But he will know that when clouds and darkness compassed him about, and he cried unto the Lord, the darkness was dispersed, and peace and joy were in the temple of the soul. He will know what it is to have the pardoning love of God revealed to the heart, to experience the peace that passes all understanding, to have praise and thanksgiving and adoration welling up in the soul unto Him who has loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood. He has peace through Jesus Christ, and joy in the Holy Ghost. One with Christ, his soul is filled with submission to His will, and heaven is enshrined in his heart while he is enfolded in the bosom of infinite love. Christians of this order will bear much fruit to the glory of God. They will rightly interpret the character of God, and manifest His attributes unto the world.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 69



Cooperate with Jesus

"Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling." Philippians 2:12

If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17). Nothing but divine power can regenerate the human heart and imbue souls with the love of Christ, which will ever manifest itself with love for those for whom He died. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance. When a man is converted to God, a new moral taste is supplied, a new motive power is given, and he loves the things that God loves; for his life is bound up by the golden chain of the immutable promises to the life of Jesus. Love, joy, peace, and inexpressible gratitude will pervade the soul, and the language of him who is blessed will be, “Thy gentleness hath made me great” (Psalm 18:35). 

 

 

But those who are waiting to behold a magical change in their characters without determined effort on their part to overcome sin will be disappointed. We have no reason to fear while looking to Jesus, no reason to doubt but that He is able to save to the uttermost all that come unto Him; but we may constantly fear lest our old nature will again obtain the supremacy, that the enemy shall devise some snare whereby we shall again become his captives. 

We are to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God that worketh in you to will and to do of His good pleasure. With our limited powers we are to be as holy in our sphere as God is holy in His sphere. To the extent of our ability, we are to make manifest the truth and love and excellence of the divine character. As wax takes the impression of the seal, so the soul is to take the impression of the Spirit of God and retain the image of Christ. 

We are to grow daily in spiritual loveliness. We shall fail often in our efforts to copy the divine Pattern. We shall often have to bow down to weep at the feet of Jesus, because of our shortcomings and mistakes; but we are not to be discouraged; we are to pray more fervently, believe more fully, and try again with more steadfastness to grow into the likeness of our Lord.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 64



Resting in Jesus

"Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls." Matthew 11:29

While you have been walking in meekness and lowliness of heart, a work has been going on for you, a work which only God could do; for it is God that worketh in you, both to will and to do of His good pleasure. And that good pleasure is to have you abide in Christ, rest in His love. You must not let anything rob your soul of peace, of restfulness, of the assurance that you are accepted just now. Appropriate every promise; all are yours on condition of your complying with the Lord’s prescribed terms. Entire surrender of your ways, which seem so very wise, and taking Christ’s ways, is the secret of perfect rest in His love. 

 

 

Giving up one’s life to Him means much more than we suppose. We must learn His meekness and lowliness before we realize the fulfillment of the promise “Ye shall find rest unto your souls.” It is by learning the habits of Christ, His meekness, His lowliness, that self becomes transformed—by taking Christ’s yoke upon you and then submitting to learn. There is no one who has not much to learn. All must come under training by Jesus Christ. When they fall upon Christ, their own hereditary and cultivated traits of character are taken away as hindrances to their being partakers of the divine nature. When self dies, then Christ lives in the human agent. He abides in Christ, and Christ lives in him.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 62



The Mind of Jesus

"For “who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ." 1 Corinthians 2:16

As the man is converted by the truth, the work of transformation of character goes on. He has an increased measure of understanding, in becoming a man of obedience to God. The mind and will of God become his will, and by constantly looking to God for counsel, he becomes a man of increased understanding.

 

 

This is not a one-sided education, which develops a one-sided character; but there is revealed a harmoniously developed character. Weaknesses that have been seen in the powerless, vacillating character are overcome, and continual devotion and piety bring the man in such close relation to Jesus Christ that he has the mind of Christ. He is one with Christ, having soundness and strength of principle, and clearness of perception, which is that wisdom that comes from God, who is the source of all light and understanding. 

The grace of God has fallen upon the humble, obedient, conscientious soul like the Sun of righteousness, strengthening the mental faculties. And in the most astonishing manner, it makes those who long to use their capacity in the Master’s service, small though it may be, strong continually by obedience and practice to grow in grace and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ and be bearers of much fruit to the glory of God, in good works... The opening of God’s Word is followed by remarkable opening in strengthening a man’s faculties; for the entrance of God’s Word is the application of divine truth to the heart, purifying and refining the soul through the agency of the Holy Spirit.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 58



A Clean Heart

"Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me." Psalm 51:10

“Create in me a clean heart.” This is beginning right, at the very foundation of Christian character; for out of the heart are the issues of life. If all, ministers and people, would see to it that their hearts are right with God, we should see much larger results from the labor put forth. The more important and responsible your work, the greater the necessity that you have clean hearts. The needed grace is provided, and the power of the Holy Spirit will work with every effort you make in this direction. 

 

If every child of God would seek Him earnestly and perseveringly, there would be a greater growth in grace. Dissensions would cease; believers would be of one heart and one mind; and purity and love would prevail in the church. By beholding we become changed. The more you contemplate the character of Christ, the more you will become conformed to His image. Come to Jesus just as you are, and He will receive you, and put a new song in your mouth, even praise to God. 

“Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me” (Psalm 51:11). Repentance as well as forgiveness is the gift of God through Christ. It is through the influence of the Holy Spirit that we are convinced of sin, and feel our need of pardon. None but the contrite are forgiven; but it is the grace of the Lord that makes the heart penitent. He is acquainted with all our weaknesses and infirmities, and He will help us. He will hear the prayer of faith; but the sincerity of prayer can be proved only by our efforts to bring ourselves into harmony with the great moral standard which will test every man’s character. We need to open our hearts to the influence of the Spirit, and to experience its transforming power. 

Ye Shall Receive Power, 56



Grace of Great Price

"Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom." James 3:13. 

Meekness in the school of Christ is one of the marked fruits of the Spirit. It is a grace wrought by the Holy Spirit as a sanctifier, and enables its possessor at all times to control a rash and impetuous temper. When the grace of meekness is cherished by those who are naturally sour or hasty in disposition, they will put forth the most earnest efforts to subdue their unhappy temper. Every day they will gain self-control, until that which is unlovely and unlike Jesus is conquered. They become assimilated to the divine Pattern, until they can obey the inspired injunction, “Be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath” (James 1:19).

 

 

When a man professes to be sanctified, and yet in words and works may be represented by the impure fountain sending forth its bitter waters, we may safely say, that man is deceived. He needs to learn the very alphabet of what constitutes the life of a Christian. Some who profess to be servants to Christ have so long cherished the demon of unkindness that they seem to love the unhallowed element, and to take pleasure in speaking words that displease and irritate. These men must be converted, before Christ will acknowledge them as His children. 

Meekness is the inward adorning, which God estimates as of great price. The apostle speaks of this as more excellent and valuable than gold, or pearls, or costly array. While the outward adorning beautifies only the mortal body, the ornament of meekness adorns the soul, and connects finite man with the infinite God. This is the ornament of God’s own choice. He who garnished the heavens with the orbs of light has by the same Spirit promised that He will “beautify the meek with salvation” (Psalm 149:4). Angels of heaven will register as best adorned, those who put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and walk with Him in meekness and lowliness of mind.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 54



Our Minds Made New

"And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God." Romans 12:2

The part man has to act in the salvation of the soul is to believe on Jesus Christ as a perfect Redeemer, not for some other man, but for his own self. He is to trust, to love, to fear the God of heaven. There is a certain work to be accomplished. Man must be delivered from the power of sin. He must be made perfect in every good work. In doing the words of Christ is his only assurance that his house is built upon the solid foundation. To hear, to say, to preach, and not to do the words of Christ is building upon the sand. 

 

 

Those who do the words of Christ will perfect a Christian character, because Christ’s will is their will. Thus is Christ formed within, the hope of glory. They are beholding, as in a glass, the glory of God. By our making Christ the subject of meditation, He will become the subject of conversation; and by beholding, we will actually be changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even by the Spirit of the Lord. Man, fallen man, may be transformed by the renewing of the mind, so that he can “prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” How does he prove this? By the Holy Spirit taking possession of his mind, spirit, heart, and character. Where does the proving come in? “We are made a spectacle to the world, and to angels, and to men” (1 Corinthians 4:9). 

A real work is wrought by the Holy Spirit upon the human character, and its fruits are seen; just as a good tree will bear good fruit, so will the tree that is actually planted in the Lord’s garden produce good fruit unto eternal life.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 50



A Healthy Christian

"By which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust." 2 Peter 1:4

A healthy Christian is one who has Christ formed within, the hope of glory. He loves truth, purity, and holiness, and will manifest spiritual vitality, having love for the Word of God. And in order that he may catch every ray of light that God has communicated, he also seeks communion with those who are acquainted with the Word which reveals Christ and makes Him more precious to the soul. He who has sound faith finds that Christ is the life of the soul, that He is in him as a well of water springing up unto everlasting life, and he delights to conform every power of the soul to the obedience of his Lord. The Holy Spirit with its vivifying influence ever keeps such a soul in the love of God. 

 

 

To the Christian it is written: “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, according as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And besides this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure; for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: for so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:2-11).

Ye Shall Receive Power, 43


 


A Temple for the Spirit

"Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s." 1 Corinthians 6:19,20

A power above and outside of man is to work upon him, that solid timbers may be brought into his character building. In the inner sanctuary of the soul the presence of God is to abide. “And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? For ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people” (2 Corinthians 6:16).

 

 

Everything that God could do has been done for the salvation of man. In one rich gift He poured out the treasures of heaven. He invites, He pleads, He urges; but He will not compel men to come unto Him. He waits for their co-operation. He waits for the consent of the will, that He may bestow upon the sinner the riches of his grace, reserved for him from the foundation of the world.

A man does not build himself into an habitation for the Spirit, and unless there is a co-operation of man’s will with God’s will, the Lord can do nothing for him. Though the Lord is the great Master-worker, yet the human agent has his part to act with the divine worker, or the heavenly building cannot be completed. All the power is of God; yet all the responsibility rests with the human agent, for God can do nothing without the co-operation of man.

The Lord does not design that human power should be paralyzed; but that by co-operation with God, man may become a more efficient agent in his hands. Though weak, erring, frail, sinful, and imperfect, the Lord holds out to man the privilege of co-partnership with Himself.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 42



Qualified for God's Service

"Most assuredly I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." John 3:3

Christ does not acknowledge any caste, color, or grade as necessary to become a subject of His kingdom. Admittance to His kingdom does not depend upon wealth or a superior heredity. But those who are born of the Spirit are the subjects of His kingdom. Spiritual character is that which will be recognized by Christ. His kingdom is not of this world. His subjects are those who are partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And this grace is given them of God. 

 

 

Christ does not find His subjects fitted for His kingdom, but He qualifies them by His divine power. Those who have been dead in trespasses and sins are quickened to spiritual life. The faculties which God has given them for holy purposes are refined, purified, and exalted, and they are led to form characters after the divine similitude. Though they have misapplied their talents and made them serve sin; though Christ has been to them a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense, because they stumbled at the Word, being disobedient, yet by the drawing of His love they are led at last into the path of duty. Christ said, “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). 

Christ draws them to Himself by an unseen power. He is the light of life, and He imbues them with His own Spirit. As they are drawn into the spiritual atmosphere, they see that they have been made the sport of Satan’s temptations, and that they have been under his dominion; but they break the yoke of fleshly lusts, and refuse to be the servants of sin. Satan strives to hold them. He assails them with various temptations; but the Spirit works to renew them after the image of Him who created them.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 40



The Spirit Patiently Waits

"Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him and he with Me." Revelation 3:20

All, from the oldest to the youngest, need to be taught of God. We may be taught by man to see the truth clearly, but God alone can teach the heart to receive the truth savingly, which means to receive the words of eternal life into good and honest hearts. The Lord is waiting patiently to instruct every willing soul who will be taught. The fault is not with the willing Instructor, the greatest Teacher the world ever knew, but it is with the learner who holds to his own impressions and ideas, and will not give up his human theories and come in humility to be taught. He will not allow his conscience and his heart to be educated, disciplined, and trained—worked as the husbandman works the earth, and as the architect constructs the building. “Ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building” (1 Corinthians 3:9). 

 

 

Everyone needs to be worked, molded, and fashioned after the divine [pattern]. Christ tells you, my dear friends, young and old, the everlasting truth, “Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; ... For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him” (John 6:53-56). Said Christ, “It is the Spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life” (verse 63). 

Those who search the Scriptures, and most earnestly seek to understand them, will reveal the sanctification of the Spirit through the belief of the truth, for they take into their very heart the truth, and have that faith that works by love and purifies the soul. All their spiritual sinew and muscle are nourished by the Bread of Life which they eat.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 38



The Spirit Moves Among Us

"By this we know that we abide in Him, and He is us, because He has given us of His Spirit." 1 John 4:13

Though we cannot see the Spirit of God, we know that men who have been dead in trespasses and sins become convicted and converted under its operations. The thoughtless and wayward become serious. The hardened repent of their sins, and the faithless believe. The gambler, the drunkard, the licentious, become steady, sober, and pure. The rebellious and obstinate become meek and Christlike. When we see these changes in the character, we may be assured that the converting power of God has transformed the entire man. We saw not the Holy Spirit, but we saw the evidence of His work on the changed character of those who were hardened and obdurate sinners. As the wind moves in its force upon the lofty trees and brings them down, so the Holy Spirit can work upon human hearts, and no finite man can circumscribe the work of God. 

 

 

The Spirit of God is manifested in different ways upon different men. One under the movings of this power will tremble before the Word of God. His convictions will be so deep that a hurricane and tumult of feeling seem to rage in his heart, and his whole being is prostrate under the convicting power of the truth. When the Lord speaks forgiveness to the repenting soul, he is full of ardor, full of love to God, full of earnestness and energy, and the life-giving Spirit which he has received cannot be repressed.

Christ is in him, a well of water springing up into everlasting life. His feelings of love are as deep and ardent as was his distress and agony. His soul is like the fountain of the great deep broken up, and he pours forth his thanksgiving and praise, his gratitude and joy, until the heavenly harps are tuned to notes of rejoicing. He has a story to tell, but not in any precise, common, methodical way. He is a soul ransomed through the merits of Jesus Christ, and his whole being is thrilled with the realization of the salvation of God.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 29



God's Family

"For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God." Romans 8:14

All our present and future hopes depend upon our kinship with Christ and with God. The apostle Paul speaks strong words to confirm our faith in this respect. To those who are led by the Spirit of God, in whose hearts the grace of Christ is dwelling, he declares: “The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: and if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together” (Romans 8:16, 17). “Ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father” (verse 15). 

 

 

We are called by Christ to come out from the world and to be separate. We are called to live holy lives, having our hearts continually drawn out to God, and having in our lives the Holy Spirit as an abiding presence. Every true believer in Christ will reveal that the grace of His love is in the heart. Where once there was estrangement from God, there will be revealed co-partnership with Him; where once the carnal nature was manifest, there will be seen the attributes of the divine.

His people are to become workers of righteousness, constant seekers after God, constant workers of His will. This will make them complete in Christ. To angels and to men and to worlds unfallen they are to make it manifest that their lives are conforming to the will of God, that they are loyal adherents to the principles of His kingdom. The Holy Spirit, dwelling in their hearts by faith, will bring them into fellowship with Christ and with one another, and will yield in them the precious fruits of holiness.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 28



Showers of Grace

"Ask the Lord for rain in the time of the latter rain. The Lord will make flashing clouds; He will give them showers of rain, grass in the field for everyone." Zechariah 10:1

In the East the former rain falls at the sowing time. It is necessary in order that the seed may germinate. Under the influence of the fertilizing showers, the tender shoot springs up. The latter rain, falling near the close of the season, ripens the grain, and prepares it for the sickle. The Lord employs these operations of nature to represent the work of the Holy Spirit. As the dew and the rain are given first to cause the seed to germinate, and then to ripen the harvest, so the Holy Spirit is given to carry forward, from one stage to another, the process of spiritual growth. The ripening of the grain represents the completion of the work of God’s grace in the soul. By the power of the Holy Spirit the moral image of God is to be perfected in the character. We are to be wholly transformed into the likeness of Christ.

 

 

Many have in a great measure failed to receive the former rain. They have not obtained all the benefits that God has thus provided for them. They expect that the lack will be supplied by the latter rain. When the richest abundance of grace shall be bestowed, they intend to open their hearts to receive it. They are making a terrible mistake. The work that God has begun in the human heart in giving His light and knowledge must be continually going forward. Every individual must realize his own necessity. The heart must be emptied of every defilement, and cleansed for the indwelling of the Spirit. 

It was by the confession and forsaking of sin, by earnest prayer and consecration of themselves to God, that the early disciples prepared for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. The same work, only in greater degree, must be done now. Then the human agent had only to ask for the blessing, and wait for the Lord to perfect the work concerning him. It is God who began the work, and He will finish His work, making man complete in Jesus Christ. But there must be no neglect of the grace represented by the former rain. Only those who are living up to the light they have will receive greater light. Unless we are daily advancing in the exemplification of the active Christian virtues, we shall not recognize the manifestations of the Holy Spirit in the latter rain.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 25



Give Me a New Heart

"Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." John 3:5. 

In order to serve God acceptably, we must be “born again.” Our natural dispositions, which are in opposition to the Spirit of God, must be put away. We must be made new men and women in Christ Jesus. Our old, unrenewed lives must give place to a new life—a life full of love, of trust, of willing obedience. Think you that such a change is not necessary for entrance into the kingdom of God? Listen to the words of the Majesty of heaven: “Ye must be born again” (John 3:7). “Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3). Unless the change takes place, we cannot serve God aright. Our work will be defective; earthly plans will be brought in; strange fire, dishonoring to God, will be offered. Our lives will be unholy and unhappy, full of unrest and trouble. 

 

 

The change of heart represented by the new birth can be brought about only by the effectual working of the Holy Spirit. It alone can cleanse us from all impurity. If it is allowed to mold and fashion our hearts, we shall be able to discern the character of the kingdom of God, and realize the necessity of the change which must be made before we can obtain entrance to this kingdom. Pride and self-love resist the Spirit of God; every natural inclination of the soul opposes the change from self-importance and pride to the meekness and lowliness of Christ. But if we would travel in the pathway to eternal life, we must not listen to the whispering of self. In humility and contrition we must beseech our heavenly Father, “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me” (Psalm 51:10). As we receive divine light, and cooperate with the heavenly intelligences, we are “born again,” freed from the defilement of sin by the power of Christ. 

Christ came to our world because He saw that men had lost the image and nature of God. He saw that they had wandered far from the path of peace and purity, and that, if left to themselves, they would never find their way back. He came with a full and complete salvation, to change our stony hearts to hearts of flesh, to change our sinful natures into His similitude, that, by being partakers of the divine nature, we might be fitted for the heavenly courts.

Ye shall Receive Power, 24



Water for the Thirsty

"Whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.” John 4:14

As the plan of redemption begins and ends with a gift, so it is to be carried forward. The same spirit of sacrifice which purchased salvation for us will dwell in the hearts of all who become partakers of the heavenly gift. Says the apostle Peter: “As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God” (1 Peter 4:10). Said Jesus to His disciples as He sent them forth, “Freely ye have received, freely give” (Matthew 10:8).

In him who is fully in sympathy with Christ, there can be nothing selfish or exclusive. He who drinks of the living water will find that it is “in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.” The Spirit of Christ within him is like a spring welling up in the desert, flowing to refresh all, and making those who are ready to perish eager to drink of the water of life. 

 

It was the same spirit of love and self-sacrifice which dwelt in Christ that impelled the apostle Paul to his manifold labors. “I am debtor,” he says, “both to the Greeks, and to the barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise” (Romans 1:14). “Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ” (Ephesians 3:8). 

Our Lord designed that His church should reflect to the world the fullness and sufficiency that we find in Him. We are constantly receiving of God’s bounty, and by imparting of the same we are to represent to the world the love and beneficence of Christ. While all heaven is astir, dispatching messengers to all parts of the earth to carry forward the work of redemption, the church of the living God are also to be co-laborers with Jesus Christ. 

Ye Shall Receive Power, 19



Give Me Oil in My Lamp

"They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps." Matthew 25:3, 4

Oil is a symbol of the Holy Spirit, which is brought into the soul through faith in Jesus Christ. Those who earnestly search the Scriptures with much prayer, who rely upon God with firm faith, who obey His commandments, will be among those who are represented as wise virgins. The teachings of the Word of God are not yea and nay, but yea and amen. 

 

 

The requirement of the gospel is far-reaching. Says the apostle, “Whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him” (Colossians 3:17). “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). Practical piety will not be attained by giving the grand truths of the Bible a place in the outer courts of the heart. The religion of the Bible must be brought into the large and the little affairs of life. It must furnish the powerful motives and principles that will regulate the Christian’s character and course of action.... 

The oil so much needed by those who are represented as foolish virgins, is not something to be put on the outside. They need to bring the truth into the sanctuary of the soul, that it may cleanse, refine, and sanctify. It is not theory that they need; it is the sacred teachings of the Bible, which are not uncertain, disconnected doctrines, but are living truths, that involve eternal interests that center in Christ. In Him is the complete system of divine truth. The salvation of the soul, through faith in Christ, is the ground and pillar of the truth. 

Those who exercise true faith in Christ make it manifest by holiness of character, by obedience to the law of God. They realize that the truth as it is in Jesus reaches heaven, and compasses eternity. They understand that the Christian’s character should represent the character of Christ, and be full of grace and truth. To them is imparted the oil of grace, which sustains a never-failing light. The Holy Spirit in the heart of the believer makes him complete in Christ.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 16



Unseen as the Wind

"The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” John 3:8

The wind is heard among the branches of the trees, rustling the leaves and flowers; yet it is invisible, and no man knows whence it comes or whither it goes. So with the work of the Holy Spirit upon the heart. He can no more be explained than can the movements of the wind. A person may not be able to tell the exact time or place, or to trace all the circumstances in the process of conversion; but this does not prove him to be unconverted. 

 

 

By an agency as unseen as the wind, Christ is constantly working upon the heart. Little by little, perhaps unconsciously to the receiver, impressions are made that tend to draw the soul to Christ. These may be received through meditating upon Him, through reading the Scriptures, or through hearing the Word from the living preacher. Suddenly, as the Spirit comes with more direct appeal, the soul gladly surrenders itself to Jesus. By many this is called sudden conversion; but it is the result of long wooing by the Spirit of God—a patient, protracted process. While the wind is itself invisible, it produces effects that are seen and felt. So the work of the Spirit upon the soul will reveal itself in every act of him who has felt its saving power.

When the Spirit of God takes possession of the heart, it transforms the life. Sinful thoughts are put away, evil deeds are renounced; love, humility, and peace take the place of anger, envy, and strife. Joy takes the place of sadness, and the countenance reflects the light of heaven. No one sees the hand that lifts the burden, or beholds the light descend from the courts above. The blessing comes when by faith the soul surrenders itself to God. Then that power which no human eye can see creates a new being in the image of God.

Ye Shall Receive Power, 15



The Promise of the Spirit

"And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever." John 14:16

When Christ gave His disciples the promise of the Spirit, He was nearing the close of His earthly ministry. He was standing in the shadow of the cross, with a full realization of the load of guilt that was to rest upon Him as the Sin Bearer. Before offering Himself as the sacrificial victim, He instructed His disciples regarding a most essential and complete gift which He was to bestow upon His followers—the gift that would bring within their reach the boundless resources of His grace. 

“I will pray the Father,” He said, “and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it sees him not, neither knows him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you” (John 14:16, 17). The Savior was pointing forward to the time when the Holy Spirit should come to do a mighty work as His representative. The evil that had been accumulating for centuries was to be resisted by the divine power of the Holy Spirit.... 

 

 

The promise of the Holy Spirit is not limited to any age or to any race. Christ declared that the divine influence of His Spirit was to be with His followers unto the end. From the day of Pentecost to the present time, the Comforter has been sent to all who have yielded themselves fully to the Lord and to His service. To all who have accepted Christ as a personal Savior, the Holy Spirit has come as a counselor, sanctifier, guide, and witness. The more closely believers have walked with God, the more clearly and powerfully have they testified of their Redeemer’s love and of His saving grace. 

Ye shall Receive Power, pg 9



God's Promise of Hope

"Now acquaint yourself with Him and be at peace; thereby good will come to you." Job 22:21

In the days of Elisha, "the outlook for the spiritual regeneration of the nation was as hopeless as is the outlook today before God's servants who are laboring in the dark places of the earth. But the church of Christ is God's agency for the proclamation of truth; she is empowered by Him to do a special work; and if she is loyal to God, obedient to His commandments, there will dwell within her he excellency of divine power. If she will be true to her allegiance, there is no power hat can stand against her. The forces of the enemy will be more able to overwhelm her than is the chaff to resist the whirlwind.

 

 

There is before the church the dawn of a bright, glorious day if she will put on the robe of Christ's righteousness, withdrawing from all allegiance to the world.

God calls upon His faithful ones, who believe in Him, to talk courage to those who are unbelieving and hopeless. Turn to the Lord, ye prisoners of hope. Seek strength from God, the living God. Show an unwavering, humble faith in His power and His willingness to save. When in faith we take hold of His strength, He will change--wonderfully change--the most hopeless, discouraging outlook. He will do this for the glory of His name.

Prophets and Kings, 259-260



The Promised Gift

"And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever— the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you." John 14:16-17

The Comforter is called “the Spirit of truth.” His work is to define and maintain the truth. He first dwells in the heart as the Spirit of truth, and thus He becomes the Comforter. There is comfort and peace in the truth, but no real peace or comfort can be found in falsehood. It is through false theories and traditions that Satan gains his power over the mind. By directing men to false standards, he misshapes the character. Through the Scriptures the Holy Spirit speaks to the mind, and impresses truth upon the heart. Thus He exposes error, and expels it from the soul. It is by the Spirit of truth, working through the word of God, that Christ subdues His chosen people to Himself. 

 

 

In describing to His disciples the office work of the Holy Spirit, Jesus sought to inspire them with the joy and hope that inspired His own heart. He rejoiced because of the abundant help He had provided for His church. The Holy Spirit was the highest of all gifts that He could solicit from His Father for the exaltation of His people. The Spirit was to be given as a regenerating agent, and without this the sacrifice of Christ would have been of no avail. The power of evil had been strengthening for centuries, and the submission of men to this satanic captivity was amazing. Sin could be resisted and overcome only through the mighty agency of the Third Person of the Godhead, who would come with no modified energy, but in the fullness of divine power. It is the Spirit that makes effectual what has been wrought out by the world’s Redeemer. It is by the Spirit that the heart is made pure. Through the Spirit the believer becomes a partaker of the divine nature. Christ has given His Spirit as a divine power to overcome all hereditary and cultivated tendencies to evil, and to impress His own character upon His church. 

Of the Spirit Jesus said, “He shall glorify Me.” The Saviour came to glorify the Father by the demonstration of His love; so the Spirit was to glorify Christ by revealing His grace to the world. The very image of God is to be reproduced in humanity. The honor of God, the honor of Christ, is involved in the perfection of the character of His people.

“When He [the Spirit of truth] is come, He will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.” The preaching of the word will be of no avail without the continual presence and aid of the Holy Spirit. This is the only effectual teacher of divine truth. Only when the truth is accompanied to the heart by the Spirit will it quicken the conscience or transform the life. One might be able to present the letter of the word of God, he might be familiar with all its commands and promises; but unless the Holy Spirit sets home the truth, no souls will fall on the Rock and be broken. No amount of education, no advantages, however great, can make one a channel of light without the co-operation of the Spirit of God. The sowing of the gospel seed will not be a success unless the seed is quickened into life by the dew of heaven. Before one book of the New Testament was written, before one gospel sermon had been preached after Christ’s ascension, the Holy Spirit came upon the praying apostles. Then the testimony of their enemies was, “Ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine.” Acts 5:28. 

Christ has promised the gift of the Holy Spirit to His church, and the promise belongs to us as much as to the first disciples. But like every other promise, it is given on conditions. There are many who believe and profess to claim the Lord’s promise; they talk about Christ and about the Holy Spirit, yet receive no benefit. They do not surrender the soul to be guided and controlled by the divine agencies. We cannot use the Holy Spirit. The Spirit is to use us. Through the Spirit God works in His people “to will and to do of His good pleasure.” Philippians 2:13. But many will not submit to this. They want to manage themselves. This is why they do not receive the heavenly gift. Only to those who wait humbly upon God, who watch for His guidance and grace, is the Spirit given. The power of God awaits their demand and reception. This promised blessing, claimed by faith, brings all other blessings in its train. It is given according to the riches of the grace of Christ, and He is ready to supply every soul according to the capacity to receive.

The Desire of Ages, pg 671



Salting the Earth

"You are the salt of the earth." Matthew 5:13

When God compares His children to salt, He would teach them that His purpose in making them the subjects of His grace is that they may become agents in saving others. The object of God in choosing a people before all the world was not only that He might adopt them as His sons and daughters, but that through them the world might receive the grace that bringeth salvation. When the Lord chose Abraham, it was not simply to be the special friend of God, but to be a medium of the peculiar privileges the Lord desired to bestow upon the nations. 

The world needs evidences of sincere Christianity. The poison of sin is at work at the heart of society. Cities and towns are steeped in sin and moral corruption. The world is full of sickness, suffering, and iniquity. Nigh and afar off are souls in poverty and distress, weighed down with a sense of guilt and perishing for want of a saving influence. The gospel of truth is kept ever before them, yet they perish because the example of those who should be a savor of life to them is a savor of death. Their souls drink in bitterness because the springs are poisoned, when they should be like a well of water springing up unto everlasting life.

 

 

Salt must be mingled with the substance to which it is added; it must penetrate, infuse it, that it may be preserved. So it is through personal contact and association that men are reached by the saving power of the gospel. They are not saved as masses, but as individuals. Personal influence is a power. It is to work with the influence of Christ, to lift where Christ lifts, to impart correct principles, and to stay the progress of the world’s corruption. It is to diffuse that grace which Christ alone can impart. It is to uplift, to sweeten the lives and characters of others by the power of a pure example united with earnest faith and love. 

As those who have been cleansed and sanctified through a knowledge of Bible truth engage heartily in the work of soul-saving, they will become indeed a savor of life unto life. And as daily they drink of the inexhaustible fountain of grace and knowledge, they will find that their own hearts are filled to overflowing with the Spirit of their Master, and that through their unselfish ministry many are benefited physically, mentally, and spiritually. The weary are refreshed, the sick restored to health, and the sin-burdened relieved. In far-off countries thanksgiving is heard from the lips of those whose hearts are turned from the service of sin unto righteousness. 

“Give, and it shall be given unto you;” for the word of God is “a fountain of gardens, a well of living waters, and streams from Lebanon.” Luke 6:38; Song of Solomon 4:15

Prophets and Kings, 231-232, 234



Faithful in Little Things

"He who is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much." Luke 16:10.

God had bidden Elijah anoint another to be prophet in his stead. “Elisha the son of Shaphat ... shalt thou anoint to be prophet in thy room” (1 Kings 19:16), He had said; and in obedience to the command, Elijah went to find Elisha. As he journeyed northward, how changed was the scene from what it had been only a short while before! Then the ground was parched, the farming districts unworked, for neither dew nor rain had fallen for three and a half years. Now on every hand vegetation was springing up as if to redeem the time of drought and famine. 

 

 

Elisha’s father was a wealthy farmer, a man whose household were among the number that in a time of almost universal apostasy had not bowed the knee to Baal. Theirs was a home where God was honored and where allegiance to the faith of ancient Israel was the rule of daily life. In such surroundings the early years of Elisha were passed. In the quietude of country life, under the teaching of God and nature and the discipline of useful work, he received the training in habits of simplicity and of obedience to his parents and to God that helped to fit him for the high position he was afterward to occupy.

The prophetic call came to Elisha while, with his father’s servants, he was plowing in the field. He had taken up the work that lay nearest. He possessed both the capabilities of a leader among men and the meekness of one who is ready to serve. Of a quiet and gentle spirit, he was nevertheless energetic and steadfast. Integrity, fidelity, and the love and fear of God were his, and in the humble round of daily toil he gained strength of purpose and nobleness of character, constantly increasing in grace and knowledge. While co-operating with his father in the home-life duties, he was learning to co-operate with God. 

By faithfulness in little things, Elisha was preparing for weightier trusts. Day by day, through practical experience, he gained a fitness for a broader, higher work. He learned to serve; and in learning this, he learned also how to instruct and lead. The lesson is for all. None can know what may be God’s purpose in His discipline; but all may be certain that faithfulness in little things is the evidence of fitness for greater responsibilities. Every act of life is a revelation of character, and he only who in small duties proves himself “a workman that needeth not to be ashamed” can be honored by God with higher service. 2 Timothy 2:15.

 

Many long for special talent with which to do a wonderful work, while the duties lying close at hand, the performance of which would make the life fragrant, are lost sight of. Let such ones take up the duties lying directly in their pathway. Success depends not so much on talent as on energy and willingness. It is not the possession of splendid talents that enables us to render acceptable service, but the conscientious performance of daily duties, the contented spirit, the unaffected, sincere interest in the welfare of others. In the humblest lot true excellence may be found. The commonest tasks, wrought with loving faithfulness, are beautiful in God’s sight.



The Battle is His

"‘Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God's." 2 Chronicles 20:15

Toward the close of Jehoshaphat’s reign the kingdom of Judah was invaded by an army before whose approach the inhabitants of the land had reason to tremble. “The children of Moab, and the children of Ammon, and with them other beside the Ammonites, came against Jehoshaphat to battle.” Tidings of this invasion reached the king through a messenger, who appeared with the startling word, “There cometh a great multitude against thee from beyond the sea on this side Syria: and, behold, they be in Hazazon-tamar, which is Engedi.” 2 Chronicles 20:1, 2. 

 

 

Jehoshaphat was a man of courage and valor. For years he had been strengthening his armies and his fortified cities. He was well prepared to meet almost any foe; yet in this crisis he put not his trust in the arm of flesh. Not by disciplined armies and fenced cities, but by a living faith in the God of Israel, could he hope to gain the victory over these heathen who boasted of their power to humble Judah in the eyes of the nations. 

“Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. And Judah gathered themselves together, to ask help of the Lord: even out of all the cities of Judah they came to seek the Lord.”

Standing in the temple court before his people, Jehoshaphat poured out his soul in prayer, pleading God’s promises, with confession of Israel’s helplessness...O our God, wilt Thou not judge them? for we have no might against this great company that cometh against us; neither know we what to do: but our eyes are upon Thee.”

As the people joined with their king in humbling themselves before God, and asking Him for help, the Spirit of the Lord came upon Jahaziel, “a Levite of the sons of Asaph,” and he said: {PK 201.1}

“Hearken ye, all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and thou King Jehoshaphat, Thus saith the Lord unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God’s. Tomorrow go ye down against them: behold, they come up by the cliff of Ziz; and ye shall find them at the end of the brook, before the wilderness of Jeruel. Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the Lord with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them: for the Lord will be with you.”

Early in the morning they rose and went into the wilderness of Tekoa. As they advanced to the battle, Jehoshaphat said, “Hear me, O Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem; Believe in the Lord your God, so shall ye be established: believe His prophets, so shall ye prosper.” “And when he had consulted with the people, he appointed singers unto the Lord, and that should praise the beauty of holiness.” 2 Chronicles 20:14-21. These singers went before the army, lifting their voices in praise to God for the promise of victory.

It was a singular way of going to battle against the enemy’s army—praising the Lord with singing, and exalting the God of Israel. This was their battle song. They possessed the beauty of holiness. If more praising of God were engaged in now, hope and courage and faith would steadily increase. And would not this strengthen the hands of the valiant soldiers who today are standing in defense of truth? 

“The Lord set ambushments against the children of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir, which were come against Judah; and they were smitten. For the children of Ammon and Moab stood up against the inhabitants of Mount Seir, utterly to slay and destroy them: and when they had made an end of the inhabitants of Seir, everyone helped to destroy another. 

“And when Judah came toward the watchtower in the wilderness, they looked unto the multitude, and, behold, they were dead bodies fallen to the earth, and none escaped.” Verses 22-24. 

God was the strength of Judah in this crisis, and He is the strength of His people today. We are not to trust in princes, or to set men in the place of God. We are to remember that human beings are fallible and erring, and that He who has all power is our strong tower of defense. In every emergency we are to feel that the battle is His. His resources are limitless, and apparent impossibilities will make the victory all the greater.

Prophets and Kings, 198-202



Following the Lord

"And the Lord commanded us to observe all these statutes, to fear the Lord our God, for our good always, that He might preserve us alive, as it is this day." Deuteronomy 6:24. 

Until called to the throne at the age of thirty-five, Jehoshaphat had before him the example of good King Asa, who in nearly every crisis had done “that which was right in the eyes of the Lord.” 1 Kings 15:11. During a prosperous reign of twenty-five years, Jehoshaphat sought to walk “in all the ways of Asa his father; he turned not aside.” 

 

 

In his efforts to rule wisely, Jehoshaphat endeavored to persuade his subjects to take a firm stand against idolatrous practices. Many of the people in his realm “offered and burnt incense yet in the high places.” 1 Kings 22:43. The king did not at once destroy these shrines; but from the beginning he tried to safeguard Judah from the sins characterizing the northern kingdom under the rule of Ahab, of whom he was a contemporary for many years. Jehoshaphat himself was loyal to God. He “sought not unto Baalim; but sought to the Lord God of his father, and walked in His commandments, and not after the doings of Israel.” Because of his integrity, the Lord was with him, and “stablished the kingdom in his hand.” 2 Chronicles 17:3-5. 

“All Judah brought to Jehoshaphat presents; and he had riches and honor in abundance. And his heart was lifted up in the ways of the Lord.” As time passed and reformations were wrought, the king “took away the high places and groves out of Judah.” Verses 5, 6. “And the remnant of the Sodomites, which remained in the days of his father Asa, he took out of the land.” 1 Kings 22:46. Thus gradually the inhabitants of Judah were freed from many of the perils that had been threatening to retard seriously their spiritual development. 

Throughout the kingdom the people were in need of instruction in the law of God. In an understanding of this law lay their safety; by conforming their lives to its requirements they would become loyal both to God and to man. Knowing this, Jehoshaphat took steps to ensure to his people thorough instruction in the Holy Scriptures. The princes in charge of the different portions of his realm were directed to arrange for the faithful ministry of teaching priests. By royal appointment these instructors, working under the direct supervision of the princes, “went about throughout all the cities of Judah, and taught the people.” 2 Chronicles 17:7-9. And as many endeavored to understand God’s requirements and to put away sin, a revival was effected.

To this wise provision for the spiritual needs of his subjects, Jehoshaphat owed much of his prosperity as a ruler. In obedience to God’s law there is great gain. In conformity to the divine requirements there is a transforming power that brings peace and good will among men. If the teachings of God’s word were made the controlling influence in the life of every man and woman, if mind and heart were brought under its restraining power, the evils that now exist in national and in social life would find no place. From every home would go forth an influence that would make men and women strong in spiritual insight and in moral power, and thus nations and individuals would be placed on vantage ground.

Prophets and Kings, 190-192



Trusting in Jesus

"Surely in the Lord I have righteousness and strength." Isaiah 45:24

Are you feeing discouraged? Are trials or temptations hounding you? It's good to know we're not alone. Even the mightiest men of faith have gone through dark days like that. This morning, God can lift our burdens through the life of Elijah. He wasn't always the every-strong prophet on the top of Mt. Carmel. He was also hit by doubts and fears. He knew what discouragement was all about.

"It is at the time of greatest weakness that Satan assails the soul with the fiercest temptations. It was thus that he hoped to prevail over the Son of God; for by this policy he had gained many victories over man. When the will power weakened and faith failed, then those who had stood long and valiantly for the right yielded to temptation. Moses, wearied with 40 years of wandering and unbelief, lost for a moment his hold on Infinite power. He failed just on the borders of the Promised Lad. So with Elijah. He who had maintained hi trust in Jehovah during the years of drought and famine, he who had stood undaunted before Ahab, he who throughout that trying day on Carmel had stood before the whole nation of Israel, the sole witness to the true God, in a moment of weariness allowed the fear of death to overcome his faith in God.

 

 

And so it is today. When we are encompassed with doubt, perplexed by circumstances, or afflicted by poverty or distress, Satan seeks to shake our confidence in Jehovah. It is then that he arrays before us our mistakes and tempts us to distrust God, to question His love. He hopes to discourage the soul and break our hold on God.

Those who, standing in the forefront of the conflict, are impelled by the Holy Spirit to do a special work, will frequently feel a reaction when the pressure is removed. Despondency may shake the most heroic faith and weaken the most steadfast will. But God understands, and He still pities and loves. He reads the motives and the purposes of the heart. To wait patiently, to trust when everything looks dark, is the lesson that the leaders in God's work need to learn. Heaven will not fail them in their day of adversity. Nothing is apparently more helpless, yet really more invincible, than the soul that feels its nothingness and relies wholly on God.

 

 

Not alone for men in positions of large responsibility is the lesson of Elijah's experience in learning anew how to trust God in the hour of trial. He who was Elijah's strength is strong to uphold every struggling child of His, no matter how weak. Of everyone He expects loyalty, and to everyone He grants power according to their need. In his own strength man is strengthless; but in the might of God he may be strong to overcome evil and to help others to overcome. Satan can never gain advantage of him who makes God his defense. "Surely, shall one say, in the Lord have I righteousness and strength." Isaiah 45:24.

Fellow Christian, Satan knows your weakness; therefore cling to Jesus. Abiding in God's love, you may stand every test. The righteousness of Christ alone can give you power to stem the tide of evil that is sweeping over the world. Bring faith into your experience. Faith lightens every burden--relieves every weariness...Walk by faith in the path He marks out. Trials will come, but go forward. This will strengthen your faith and fit you for service.



Hold On

"Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit." James 5:17-18.

Elijah was a man of great faith. He believed God would do as He promised even when he had no outward evidence. Even when his prayers weren't answered right away, he "did not become impatient or lose faith, but continued his earnest pleading" (Prophets and Kings, 156). 

 

 

"His faith reached out and grasped the promise of Heaven and he persevered in prayer until his prayers were answered...It was because Elijah was a man of large faith that God could use him in this grave crisis in the history of Israel. As he prayed, his faith reached out and grasped the promises of Heaven, and he persevered in prayer until his petitions were answered. He did not wait for the full evidence that God had heard him, but was willing  venture all on the slightest token of divine favor. And yet what he was enabled to do under God, all may do in their sphere of activity in God's service,  for of the prophet from the mountains of Gilead, it is written:

"Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit."

James 5:17-18

Faith such as this connects us closely with Heaven and brings us strength for coping with the powers of darkness. Through faith God's children "have subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flint the armies of the aliens." Hebrews 11:33-34. And through faith we today are to reach the heights of God's purpose for us. "If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth." Mark 9:23.

Faith is an essential element of prevailing prayer. "He that comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those that diligently seek Him." Hebrews 11:6. "Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we asked of Him." 1 John 5:14-15.  With the persevering faith of Jacob, with the unyielding persistence of Elijah, we may  present our petitions to the Father, claiming all that He has promised. The honor of His throne is staked for the fulfillment of His Word."

Prophets and Kings, 156-158



If the Lord is God

"How long will you falter between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him." 1 Kings 18:21

Elijah had called the King, the priests and prophets of Baal, and all of Israel to meet him at Mt. Carmel. The time has come to show who is the true God. It was time for a show down.

Before the 3 years of drought, which God had sent to open Israel's eyes to the futility of worshiping idols, Caramel had been a place of beauty. Its streams, once fed from never-failing springs, were all dried up. Its fertile slopes, once covered with trees and flowers, were stripped bare. And on the summit of one of its highest ridges stood the broken-down altar of God. On this mountain, God had been dishonored by the Baal worship happening in all its groves. So this was the spot to show His people that He was their one and true God.

 

 

As Elijah looks at the broken-down altar of the Lord, he cries out in words that all can hear, "How long will you falter between 2 opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him." 1 Kings 18:21. 

"The people answer him not a word. Not one in that vast assembly dare reveal loyalty to Jehovah. Like a dark cloud, deception and blindness had overspread Israel. Not all at once had this fatal apostasy closed about them, but gradually, as from time to time they had failed to heed the words of warning and reproof that the Lord sent them. Each departure from right-doing, each refusal to repent, had deepened their guilt and driven them farther from Heaven. And now, in this crisis, they persisted in refusing to take their stand for God.

The Lord abhors indifference and disloyalty in a time of crisis in His work. The whole universe is watching with inexpressible interest the closing scenes of the great controversy between good and evil. The people of God are nearing the borders of the eternal world; what can be of more importance to them than that they be loyal to the God of heaven?

All through the ages, God has had moral heroes and He has them now--those who, like Joseph and Elijah and Daniel, are not ashamed to acknowledge themselves as His peculiar people. His special blessing accompanies the labors of men of action, men who will not be swerved from the straight line of duty, but who with divine energy will inquire, "Who is on the Lord's side?" (Exodus 32:26), men who will not stop merely with the inquiry, but who will demand that those who choose to identify themselves with the people of God shall step forward and reveal unmistakably their allegiance to the King of kings and Lord of lords. Such men make their wills and plans subordinate to the law of God. For love of Him, they count not their lives dear to themselves. Their work is to catch the light from the Word and let it shine forth to the world in clear, steady rays" (Prophets and Kings, 147-148).

In the crisis that is before us, God is calling us not to forsake our true identity. Men and women may see themselves as Americans or citizens of a different country; they may identify themselves as members of a political party. But this is not our true identity. Our unreserved allegiance is to God and God alone. We are His disciples, and in this hour of crisis, He needs our faithfulness and loyalty to be strong. He requires our lives to match the truths we believe and to show everyone that we are following Jesus Christ. He is the only Leader we can safely follow as we near the second coming of Christ and the final events of this world's history.

Are you taking your place on the Lord's side?



Three Steps for a Spiritual Restart

"Not by might nor by power but by My Spirit, says the Lord of Hosts." Zechariah 4:6

Would you like to experience spiritual renewal together with your church family? Here’s one suggested plan that has led to spiritual awakening and hope for churches in Germany, Switzerland, England, Tajikistan, and the United States. Revival can happen anywhere, even in secular countries, when people continually surrender themselves to Jesus and ask for the blessing of the Holy Spirit.

Pray about how your church or family or prayer group can experience a spiritual “restart” this year. Make a plan, seek input from others, and set a date to begin. You’ll want to adapt your ideas depending on your culture, your community, and the needs of your group.

 

 

We want to share the example of just one church in Decatur, Alabama, USA:

1. Restart

Take several weeks or months to pray intently for the Holy Spirit, along with studying Scripture and possibly a short devotional book.

In preparation for an evangelistic series, members of the Decatur church began praying together at church for 30 minutes every Sabbath morning. They shared pointers in the church bulletin to promote prayer, revival, and the work of the Holy Spirit. They also held a video seminar about the Holy Spirit on two Sabbath evenings. After the seminar, they distributed a short book about spiritual revival and asked members to read it over the next six weeks. Later, during Ten Days of Prayer, they prayed for revival and the Holy Spirit and celebrated a Sabbath of prayer and praise.

2. Relationship Care

Begin intercessory prayer for five unreached people, then contact them and maintain a friendship in a way that is sincere and tactful. During this time you may want to study another book about prayer or revival. Consider studying in pairs for support and deeper understanding.

During this second phase, members of the Decatur church started studying the book 40 Days: Prayers and Devotions to Prepare for the Second Coming in groups of two. As a result, their joy in telling others about Jesus grew. As suggested in the book, members also started praying for five unreached people in their lives. Then they got in touch with these acquaintances or former church members and maintained the contact over time. This resulted in baptisms and blessings for both the new members and those who had prayed for them.

Think about it: if 10 church members each pray for and maintain contact with five people, that would be 50 people, and it would grow from there. At the end of the 40 days, you might invite the people you prayed for to a special visitor Sabbath. Next, invite each person to join a small group (Bible study, healthy cooking, exercise, social activities, whatever is appropriate for the person’s interests). You can also invite them to upcoming evangelistic meetings. Remember to attend the meetings with your friends and help them feel welcome.

3. Sharing

Each member can invite the people they’ve been praying for to attend evangelistic meetings, small-group Bible studies, or a one-on-one Bible study. (If some of your prayer contacts aren’t ready for Bible studies, invite them to a small group focused on an area of interest, such as exercise, healthy cooking, hobbies, or social activities.)

When the Decatur church held an evangelistic series, the members experienced revival and a deeper relationship with Jesus. The Holy Spirit worked on the hearts of invited guests, and 10 people gave their lives to Jesus through baptism (with five more joining later). The results are a testimony to the power of prayer! 

What Can Your Church Do?

Pray together and make a plan for your church today. “All heaven is in activity, and the angels of God are waiting to cooperate with all who will devise plans whereby souls for whom Christ died may hear the glad tidings of salvation. Angels who minister to those that shall be heirs of salvation, are saying to every true saint: ‘There is work for you to do.’ ‘Go, stand and speak . . . to the people all the words of this life’ (Acts 5:20)” (Testimonies for the Church, vol. 6, pp. 433, 434).

Praying God's Word

The Holy Spirit will accomplish it.

“What you are planning will neither succeed by the might of an army nor by human strength; rather, my Spirit will accomplish it! I, the Lord God Almighty, promise this” (Zechariah 4:6, translated from the German Hoffnung fuer Alle version).

Dear Father, You tell us that success does not come from human effort. Please forgive us for our lack of Holy Spirit power. Revive us so we are not lukewarm like Laodicea. Awaken us for our own salvation and that of our neighbors. And thank You for the eternal joy You have promised.



Praying with God's Promises

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”  Matthew 7:7

“[God] is well pleased when they make the very highest demands upon Him, that they may glorify His name. They may expect large things if they have faith in His promises” (The Desire of Ages, p. 668). “Plead for the Holy Spirit. God stands back of every promise He has made. With your Bible in your hands say, I have done as Thou hast said. I present Thy promise, ‘Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you’ (Matthew 7:7)” (Christ’s Object Lessons, p. 147).

 

 

What does it mean to pray with promises? We choose a Bible promise or command and pray those words back to God. We rely on Him to do as He promised. We allow Him to guide our prayers and speak to us through His Word. And if we feel doubt—as everyone does at times—we point to the promises and claim them as God’s personal guarantee. As we fill our hearts and prayers with Scripture, our faith is strengthened and we come to know God’s mind as never before. “To blot the promises of God from the Word would be like blotting the sun from the sky. . . . God has placed the promises in His Word to lead us to have faith in Him. In these promises He draws back the veil from eternity” (My Life Today, p. 338).

The Bible offers clear guidance for our prayers. First, we are told to make our requests in the name of Jesus: “If you ask anything in My name, I will do it” (John 14:14). God also gives a general promise that He answers prayers that are according to His will: “ Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us” (1 John 5:14, 15). God reveals His will in the commands and promises of the Bible, and we can rely on Him to do what He has promised. Verse 15 goes on: “And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.”

What does that mean? When we pray for something that we know is according to God’s will, He is already answering at the same moment. We may not see visible results yet. And usually we don’t notice anything emotionally. But our prayers are answered by faith, not by our feelings. The feelings will follow later, but for now, we trust the promise.

For example, I have learned something when praying with people addicted to alcohol and nicotine. At the moment they pray for deliverance, they may not notice anything. They must receive the deliverance by faith. But perhaps a few hours later they notice they don’t have the old craving for drinking or tobacco. At this moment, they have received the practical deliverance requested in the prayer.

Jesus promises, “Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them” (Mark 11:24). Are you praying His promises every day? When we pray in His name and according to His will, all heaven is moved!



God's Solution to My Struggle

"If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.” Luke 9:23, 24

Why Should We Ask Daily for the Holy Spirit?

Years ago I read the story of a gangster who converted to Christ. He wholeheartedly confessed his perjury, theft, and other crimes, and as a result he experienced a tremendous divine intervention. God completely turned his life around.

This impressed me. I said to myself, I’m doing fine in most ways, but I don’t have experiences like that. So I prayed, “Lord, I also want to confess all my known sins and the sins You have yet to show me. In addition, I will get up an hour earlier each day to pray and read the Bible. I want to see if You will also intervene in my life.”

 

 

Praise God, He did intervene in my life! Not because I earned some merit by getting up early but because I daily placed myself where the Holy Spirit could reach me. If a fresh baptism of the Holy Spirit was a daily necessity for Jesus on this earth, how much more do we need this power? Paul writes about the inward man “being renewed day by day,” and he prays that God’s people would be “strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man” (2 Corinthians 4:16 and Ephesians 3:16). “The Lord is more willing to give the Holy Spirit to those who serve Him than parents are to give good gifts to their children. For the daily baptism of the Spirit every worker should offer his petition to God” (The Acts of the Apostles, p. 50). Our “inward person” needs daily care.

Why Should We Surrender Daily to Jesus?

Trying to help His disciples understand the sacrificial nature of discipleship, Jesus told them, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me” (Luke 9:23). To deny self means giving Jesus control over our lives each day. The apostle Paul explains it like this: “I die daily” (1 Corinthians 15:31).

As humans we resist surrender, forgetting that “when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthi