Archive for August, 2014

Cutting Loose

Posted by on August 13, 2014  |  No Comments

For Wayne Blakely and those ministering for “The Gospel.”

The quotations documented in this post are by Christian author Ellen White in Testimonies to The Church, Volume 1

It is not unusual that nearly every denomination has laid claim to prophets and those wise to instruct regarding their beliefs. Such a prophet’s value can only be determined by the rule of scripture and being in agreement. For Seventh-day Adventists, Ellen White has been such a prophet.

However in today’s world, many have disregarded her inspired writings as they seem too harsh in contrast to the world we live in today.  I believe there is good cause for this observation. We have drifted far into the land of Laodicea.  Truth directly from God’s Word says that He refines a “peculiar people.” “ But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light;” 1 Peter 2:9

Jesus called me out of the darkness and lies engulfed in “homosexuality.”  While I have been blessed with His light, I recognize that I have mumbled and murmured and complained about trials, resistance and seeming impossibilities currently resident in the church.  Going about God’s work should be a joyful, persistent, trusting work, knowing that our Savior will bring His plan to completion. He is counting on me to be a faithful, trusted servant.

This prelude of introduction is for the sobering content I read this morning as I studied for my Savior. How can we be glib and rationalize away direction which was given through vision directly to a trusting servant of God?  How is it exactly that God’s “peculiar people” will be developed? How will the world know is to be different and for what reason to we appear to be “peculiar?”

It may be tempting to try and explain away her strait revelations, but more me, I find it necessary to take heed.  Have you ever wondered why you have not noticed the genuine, but plainness in Adventists that is detected in such messengers of faith in Mormons and the Amish?  They have been respected for their dedication to belief and conviction. And often they are ridiculed, yet without deviation of their dedication.

My heart is heavy for those who might be more intimately connected to the one who loves them most.

What’s important to us?  As you read the counsel I read this morning, please don’t feel accused, but open to conviction of becoming a “peculiar people” for the one who hung with only a shroud and crown of thorns for you and I.  It might be tempting to categorize me as radical or fanatical and that’s ok. What I’m sharing is that God valued you and I so much that He provided us with clear instruction that results in eternal life or eternal death. From this instruction I draw on Christ’s strength to make right decisions for Him. How can I afford to disregard such counsel?

This is not easy reading. If you are not currently in a surrendering frame of mind, I recommend not reading any further until you recognize being in a more humble state and seek the Holy Spirit to be open to His counsel.

“Some of the professed servants of God do not know what purifying trials are. They sometimes make trials for themselves, imagine trials, and are so easily discouraged, so easily hurt, self-dignity is so quick to feel, that they injure themselves, injure others, and injure the cause. Satan magnifies their trials and puts thoughts into their minds that if given way to, will destroy their influence and usefulness.{1T 129.1}

Some have felt tempted to take themselves from the work, to labor with their hands. I saw that if the hand of God should be taken from them, and they be left subject to disease and death, then they would know what trouble is. It is a fearful thing to murmur against God. They do not bear in mind that the way which they are traveling is a rugged, self-denying, self-crucifying way, and they must not expect everything to move on as smoothly as though they were traveling in the broad road.{1T 129.2}

 

I saw that some of the servants of God, even ministers, are so easily discouraged, self is so quickly hurt, that they imagine themselves slighted and injured when it is not so. They think their lot hard. Such realize not how they would feel should the sustaining hand of God be withdrawn, and they pass through anguish of soul. They would then find their lot tenfold harder than it was before, while they were employed in the work of God, suffering trials and privations, yet withal having the Lord’s approbation. Some that are laboring in the cause of God know not when they do have an easy time. They have had so few privations and know so little of want or wearing labor or burden of soul that when they have an easy time, when they are favored of God and almost entirely free from anguish of spirit, they know it not and think their trials great. I saw that unless such have a spirit of self-sacrifice, and are ready to labor cheerfully, not sparing themselves, God will release them. He will not acknowledge them as His self-sacrificing servants, but will raise up those who will labor, not slothfully, but in earnest, and will know when they have an easy time. God’s servants must feel the burden of souls and weep between the porch and the altar, crying: “Spare Thy people, O Lord.” {1T 129.3}

 

Some of the servants of God have given up their lives to spend and be spent for the cause of God, until their constitutions are broken down, and they are almost worn out with mental labor, incessant care, toil, and privations. Others have not had and would not take the burden upon them. Yet just such ones think they have a hard time, because they have never experienced hardships. They never have been baptized into the suffering part, and never will be as long as they manifest so much weakness and so little fortitude, and love their ease so well. From what God has shown me, there needs to be a scourging among the ministers, that the slothful, dilatory, and self-caring ones may be scourged out, and there remain a pure, faithful, and self-sacrificing company who will not study their ease, but will minister faithfully in word and doctrine, willing to suffer and endure all things for Christ’s sake, and to save those for whom He died. Let these servants feel the woe upon them if they preach not the gospel, and it will be enough; but all do not feel this. {1T 130.1}

 

Why is it so hard to lead a self-denying, humble life? Because professed Christians are not dead to the world. It is easy living after we are dead. But many are longing for the leeks and onions of Egypt. They have a disposition to dress and act as much like the world as possible and yet go to heaven. Such climb up some other way. They do not enter through the strait gate and narrow way.{1T 131.2}

“Earth attracts them, its treasures seem of worth to them.” They find enough to engross the mind, and have no time to prepare for heaven. Satan is ever ready to plunge them deeper and deeper into difficulty; as soon as one perplexity and trouble is off the mind, he begets within them an unholy desire for more of the things of earth; and thus their time passes, and, when it is too late, they see that they have gained nothing substantial. They have grasped at shadows and lost eternal life. Such will have no excuse.{1T 132.1}

I saw that the words, the dress, and actions should tell for God. Then a holy influence will be shed upon all, and all will take knowledge of them that they have been with Jesus. Unbelievers will see that the truth we profess has a holy influence and that faith in Christ’s coming affects the character of the man or woman. If any wish to have their influence tell in favor of the truth, let them live it out and thus imitate the humble Pattern.{1T 132.2}

I saw that God hates pride, and that all the proud and all that do wickedly shall be stubble, and the day that cometh shall burn them up. I saw that the third angel’s message must yet work like leaven upon many hearts that profess to believe it, and purge away their pride, selfishness, covetousness, and love of the world. {1T 132.3}

Jesus is coming; and will He find a people conformed to the world? and will He acknowledge these as His people that He has purified unto Himself? Oh, no. None but the pure and holy will He acknowledge as His. Those who have been purified and made white through suffering, and have kept themselves separate, unspotted from the world, He will own as His.{1T 133.1}

 

“Cut loose! Cut loose! lest He appoint you your portion with hypocrites and unbelievers outside the city. Your profession will only cause you greater anguish, and your punishment will be greater because ye knew His will, but did it not.”{1T 133.2}

Said the angel: “Set your heart in order, lest He visit you in judgment, and the brittle thread of life be cut, and ye lie down in the grave unsheltered, unprepared for the judgment. Or if ye do not make your bed in the grave, unless ye soon make your peace with God, and tear yourselves from the world, your hearts will grow harder, and ye will lean upon a false prop, a supposed preparation, and find out your mistake too late to secure a well-grounded hope.” {1T 133.3}

“I saw that young and old neglect the Bible. They do not make that book their study and their rule of life as they should. Especially are the young guilty of this neglect. Most of them are ready, and find plenty of time, to read almost any other book. But the word that points to life, eternal life, is not perused and daily studied. That precious, important book that is to judge them in the last day is scarcely studied at all. Idle stories have been attentively read, while the Bible has been passed by neglected. A day is coming, a day of clouds and thick darkness, when all will wish to be thoroughly furnished by the plain, simple truths of the word of God, that they may meekly, yet decidedly, give a reason of their hope. This reason of their hope, I saw, they must have to strengthen their own souls for the fierce conflict. Without this they are wanting, and cannot have firmness and decision.” {1T 134.3}

“…Oh, the pride that was shown me of God’s professed people! It has increased every year, until it is now impossible to designate professed advent Sabbathkeepers from all the world around them. I saw that this pride must be torn out of our families.”{1T 135.1}

Much has been expended for ribbons and laces for the bonnets, for collars [The question has often been asked me if I believed it wrong to wear plain linen collars. My answer has always been No. Some have taken the extreme meaning of what I have written about collars, and have maintained that it is wrong to wear one of any description. I was shown expensively wrought collars, and expensive and unnecessary ribbons and laces, which some Sabbathkeepers have worn, and still wear for the sake of show and fashion. In mentioning collars, I did not design to be understood that nothing like a collar should be

worn, or, in mentioning ribbons, that no ribbons at all should be worn. E. G. W., note to second edition.] and other needless articles to decorate the body, while Jesus the King of glory, who gave His life to redeem us, wore a crown of thorns. This was the way our Master’s sacred head was decorated. He was “a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief.” “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.” Yet the very ones that profess to be washed by the blood of Jesus, spilled for them, can dress up and decorate their poor, mortal bodies, and dare profess to be followers of the holy, self-denying, humble Pattern. Oh, that all could see this as God sees it and showed it to me! It seemed too much for me to bear, to feel the anguish of soul that I felt as I beheld it. Said the angel: “God’s people are peculiar; such He is purifying unto Himself.” I saw that the outside appearance is an index to the heart. When the exterior is hung with ribbons, collars, and needless things, it plainly shows that the love for all this is in the heart; unless such persons are cleansed from their corruption, they can never see God, for only the pure in heart will see Him. {1T 135.2}

“I saw that the ax must be laid at the root of the tree. Such pride should not be suffered in the church. It is these things that separate God from His people, that shut the ark away from them. Israel have been asleep to the pride, and fashion, and conformity to the world, in the very midst of them. They advance every month in pride, covetousness, selfishness, and love of the world. When their hearts are affected by the truth, it will cause a death to the world, and they will lay aside the ribbons, laces, and collars; and, if they are dead, the laugh, the jeer, and scorn of unbelievers will not move them. They will feel an anxious desire to be separate from the world, like their Master. They will not imitate its pride, fashions, or customs. The noble object will be ever before them, to glorify God and gain the immortal inheritance. This prospect will swallow up all beside of an earthly nature. God will have a people separate and distinct from the world. And as soon as any have a desire to imitate the fashions of the world, that they do not immediately subdue, just so soon God ceases to acknowledge them as His children. They are the children of the world and of darkness. They lust for the leeks and onions of Egypt, that is, desire to be as much like the world as possible; by so doing, those that profess to have put on Christ virtually put Him off, and show that they are strangers to grace and strangers to the meek and lowly Jesus. If they had acquainted themselves with Him, they would walk worthy of Him.” {1T 136.1}

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