Home » Bible Truths and Studies » Prophecy » THE THREE ANGELS OF REVELATION 14 - (Part 3 of 12) (TEN VIRGINS, WHICH TOOK THEIR LAMPS)
|THE THREE ANGELS OF REVELATION 14 - (Part 3 of 12) [message #3004]
||Wed, 13 January 2021 21:21
Registered: September 2015
THE THREE ANGELS OF REVELATION 14
(Part 3 of 12)
TEN VIRGINS, WHICH TOOK THEIR LAMPS
THE ANGELS’ MESSAGES
And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.
WISE AND FOOLISH VIRGINS
Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. (2) And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.
(3) They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them:
(4) But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.
The Second Angel's Message
The churches would not receive the light of the first angel's message, and as they rejected the light from heaven they fell from the favor of God. They trusted in their own strength, and placed themselves by their opposition to the first message where they could not see the light of the second angel's message. But the beloved of God, who were oppressed, answered to the message, Babylon is fallen, and left the fallen churches.
Near the close of the second angel's message, I saw a great light from heaven shining upon the people of God. The rays of this light seemed bright as the sun. And I heard the voices of angels crying, Behold the Bridegroom cometh, go ye out to meet him!
The midnight cry was given to give power to the second angel's message. Angels were sent from heaven to wake up the discouraged saints, and prepare them for the great work before them. The most talented men were not the first to receive this message. Angels were sent to the humble, devoted ones, and constrained them to raise the cry, Behold the Bridegroom cometh, go ye out to meet him. Those entrusted with the cry made haste, and in the power of the Holy Spirit spread the cry, and aroused their discouraged brethren. This cry did not stand in the wisdom and learning of men, but in the power of God, and his saints who heard the cry could not resist it. The most spiritual received this message first, and those who had formerly led in the work were the last to receive and help swell the cry, Behold the Bridegroom cometh, go ye out to meet him.
In every part of the land, light was given upon the second angel's message, and the cry was melting down thousands. It went from city to city, and from village to village, until the waiting people of God were fully aroused. Many would not permit this message to enter the churches, and a large company who had the living testimony within them left the fallen churches. A mighty work was accomplished by the midnight cry. The message was heart-searching, and led the believers to seek a living experience for themselves. They knew that they could not lean upon one another.
The saints anxiously waited for their Lord with fasting, watching and almost constant prayer. Even some sinners looked forward to the time with terror, while the great mass seemed to be stirred against this message, and manifested the spirit of Satan. They mocked and scoffed, and everywhere was heard, No man knoweth the day and the hour. Evil angels exulted around them, urging them on to harden their hearts, and to reject every ray of light from heaven, that they might fasten them in the snare. Many professed to be looking for their Lord, who had neither part nor lot in the matter. The glory of God they had witnessed, the humility and deep devotion of the waiting ones, and the overwhelming weight of evidence, caused them to profess to receive the truth. But they were not converted. They were not ready. A spirit of solemn and earnest prayer was everywhere felt by the saints. A holy solemnity was resting upon them. Angels with the deepest interest had watched the result, and were elevating those who received the heavenly message, and were drawing them from earthly things to obtain large supplies from salvation's fountain. God's people were then accepted with him. Jesus looked upon them with pleasure. His image was reflected in them. They had made a full sacrifice, an entire consecration, and expected to be changed to immortality. But they were destined to be again sadly disappointed. The time to which they looked, expecting deliverance, passed. They were still upon the earth, and the effects of the curse never seemed more visible. They had placed their affections on heaven, and in sweet anticipation, had tasted immortal deliverance; but their hopes were not realized.
The fear that had rested upon many of the people did not at once disappear. They did not immediately triumph over the disappointed ones. But as no visible wrath of God was felt by them, they recovered from the fear they had felt, and commenced their ridicule, their mocking, and scoffing. The people of God were again proved, and tested. The world laughed, and mocked, and reproached them; and those who had believed without a doubt that Jesus would then come and raise the dead, and change the living saints, and take the kingdom, and possess it forever, felt like the disciples of Christ.-- They have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.
The Second Angel's Message
The churches that refused to receive the first angel's message, rejected light from Heaven. That message was sent in mercy to arouse them to see their true condition of worldliness and backsliding, and to seek a preparation to meet their Lord. God has ever required his people to remain separate from the world, that they might not be allured from their allegiance to him. He delivered the Israelites from bondage in Egypt because he would not have them corrupted by the idolatry with which they were there surrounded. The children of this world are the children of darkness. Their attention is not directed to the Sun of Righteousness, but is centered upon themselves and the treasures of earth. Blinded by the god of this world, they have no just perception of the glory and majesty of the true God. While they enjoy his gifts, they forget the claims of the Giver. Such have chosen to walk in darkness, and they are led by the prince of the powers of darkness. They do not love and enjoy divine things, because they do not discern their value or loveliness. They have alienated themselves from the light of God, and their understanding becomes so confused in regard to that which is right, true, and holy, that the things of the Spirit of God are foolishness to them.
It was to separate the church of Christ from the corrupting influence of the world that the first angel's message was given. But with the multitude, even of professed Christians, the ties which bound them to earth were stronger than the attractions heavenward. They chose to listen to the voice of worldly wisdom, and turned away from the heart-searching message of truth.
Peter, writing as he was inspired by the Holy Spirit, described the manner in which the message of Christ's second coming would be received: "There shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, and saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water; whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished; but the heavens and the earth which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men." [2 Peter 3:3-7.]
Those who perished in the waters of the flood had an opportunity to escape.
All were urged to find refuge in the ark; but the multitudes refused to heed the warning.
So when the first angel's message was given, all who heard were invited to receive it, and share the blessing to follow its acceptance;
but many scorned and rejected the call.
One turned to his farm, another to his merchandise, and they cared for none of these things.
Inspiration declares that when the antediluvians rejected Noah's words, the Spirit of God ceased to strive with them.
So when men now despise the warnings which God in mercy sends them, his Spirit after a time ceases to arouse conviction in their hearts.
God gives light to be cherished and obeyed, not to be despised and rejected.
The light which he sends becomes darkness to those who disregard it.
When the Spirit of God ceases to impress the truth upon the hearts of men, all hearing is vain, and all preaching also is vain.
When the churches spurned the counsel of God by rejecting the Advent message, the Lord rejected them. The first angel was followed by a second, proclaiming, "Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication." [Revelation 14:8] This message was understood by Adventists to be an announcement of the moral fall of the churches in consequence of their rejection of the first message. The proclamation, "Babylon is fallen," was given in the summer of 1844, and as the result, about fifty thousand withdrew from these churches.
The term Babylon, derived from Babel, and signifying confusion, is applied in Scripture to the various forms of false or apostate religion. But the message announcing the fall of Babylon must apply to some religious body that was once pure, and has become corrupt. It cannot be the Romish Church which is here meant; for that church has been in a fallen condition for many centuries. But how appropriate the figure as applied to the Protestant churches, all professing to derive their doctrines from the Bible, yet divided into almost innumerable sects.
The unity for which Christ prayed does not exist.
Instead of one Lord, one faith, one baptism, there are numberless conflicting creeds and theories.
Religious faith appears so confused and discordant that the world know not what to believe as truth.
God is not in all this; it is the work of man,--the work of Satan.
In Revelation 17, Babylon is represented as a woman, a figure which is used in the Scriptures as the symbol of a church. A virtuous woman represents a pure church, a vile woman an apostate church. Babylon is said to be a harlot; and the prophet beheld her drunken with the blood of saints and martyrs. The Babylon thus described represents Rome, that apostate church which has so cruelly persecuted the followers of Christ. But Babylon the harlot is the mother of daughters who follow her example of corruption. Thus are represented those churches that cling to the doctrines and traditions of Rome and follow her worldly practices, and whose fall is announced in the second angel's message.
The close relation of the church to Christ is represented under the figure of marriage. The Lord had joined his people to himself by a solemn covenant, he promising to be their God, and they pledging themselves to be his, and his alone. Said Paul, addressing the church, "I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ." [2 Corinthians 11:2.] But when her confidence and affection were turned away from him, and she sought after vanity, and allowed the love of worldly things to separate her from God, she forfeited the privileges included in this peculiar and sacred relation. By the apostle James those who assimilate to the world are addressed as "adulterers and adulteresses." [James 4:4.]
A profession of religion has become popular with the world. Rulers, politicians, lawyers, doctors, merchants, join the church as a means of securing the respect and confidence of society, and advancing their own worldly interests. Thus they seek to cover all their unrighteous transactions under a profession of Christianity. The various religious bodies, re-enforced by the wealth and influence of these baptized worldlings, make a still higher bid for popularity and patronage. Splendid churches, embellished in the most extravagant manner, are erected on popular avenues. The worshipers array themselves in costly and fashionable attire. A high salary is paid for a talented minister to entertain and attract the people. His sermons must not touch popular sins, but be made smooth and pleasing for fashionable ears. Thus fashionable sinners are enrolled on the church-records, and fashionable sins are concealed under a pretense of godliness. God looks down upon these apostate bodies, and declares them daughters of a harlot. To secure the favor and support of the great men of earth, they have broken their solemn vows of allegiance and fidelity to the King of Heaven.
The great sin charged against Babylon is, that she "made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication." This cup of intoxication which she presents to the world, represents the false doctrines which she has accepted as the result of her unlawful connection with the great ones of the earth. Friendship with the world corrupts her faith, and in her turn she exerts a corrupting influence upon the world by teaching doctrines which are opposed to the plainest statements of the word of God.
Prominent among these false doctrines is that of the temporal millennium,--a thousand years of spiritual peace and prosperity, in which the world is to be converted, before the coming of Christ. This siren song has lulled thousands of souls to sleep over the abyss of eternal ruin.
The doctrine of the natural immortality of the soul has opened the way for the artful working of Satan through modern Spiritualism; and besides the Romish errors, purgatory, prayers for the dead, invocation of saints, etc., which have sprung from this source, it has led many Protestants to deny the resurrection and the Judgment, and has given rise to the revolting heresy of eternal torment, and the dangerous delusion of Universalism.
And even more dangerous and more widely held than these are the assumptions that the law of God was abolished at the cross, and that the first day of the week is now a holy day, instead of the Sabbath of the fourth commandment.
When faithful teachers expound the word of God, there arise men of learning, ministers professing to understand the Scriptures, who denounce sound doctrine as heresy, and thus turn away inquirers after truth. Were it not that the world is hopelessly intoxicated with the wine of Babylon, multitudes would be convicted and converted by the plain, cutting truths of the word of God. The sin of the world's impenitence lies at the door of the church.
God sent his professed people a message that would have corrected the evils which separated them from his favor. A state of union, faith, and love had been produced among those who from every denomination in Christendom received the Advent doctrine; and had the churches in general accepted the same truth, the same blessed results would have followed. But Babylon scornfully rejected the last means which Heaven had in reserve for her restoration, and then, with greater eagerness, she turned to seek the friendship of the world.
Those who preached the first message had no purpose or expectation of causing divisions in the churches, or of forming separate organizations. "In all my labors," said Wm. Miller, "I never had the desire or thought to establish any separate interest from that of existing denominations, or to benefit one at the expense of another. I thought to benefit all. Supposing that all Christians would rejoice in the prospect of Christ's coming, and that those who could not see as I did would not love any the less those who should embrace this doctrine, I did not conceive there would ever be any necessity for separate meetings. My whole object was a desire to convert souls to God, to notify the world of a coming Judgment, and to induce my fellow-men to make that preparation of heart which will enable them to meet their God in peace. The great majority of those who were converted under my labors united with the various existing churches. When individuals came to me to inquire respecting their duty, I always told them to go where they would feel at home; and I never favored any one denomination in my advice to such."
For a time many of the churches welcomed his labors; but as they decided against the Advent truth, they desired to suppress all agitation of the subject. Those who had accepted the doctrine were thus placed in a position of great trial and perplexity. They loved their churches, and were loth to separate from them; but as they were ridiculed and oppressed, denied the privilege of speaking of their hope, or of attending preaching upon the Lord's coming, many at last arose and cast off the yoke which had been imposed upon them.
In the days of the Reformation, the gentle and pious Melancthon declared, "There is no other church than the assembly of those who have the word of God, and who are purified by it." Adventists, seeing that the churches rejected the testimony of God's word, could no longer regard them as constituting the church of Christ, "the pillar and ground of the truth;" and as the message, "Babylon is fallen," began to be proclaimed, they felt themselves justified in separating from their former connection.
Since the rejection of the first message, a sad change has taken place in the churches.
As truth is spurned, error is received and cherished.
Love for God, and faith in his word, have grown cold.
The churches have grieved the Spirit of the Lord, and it has been in a great measure withdrawn.
The words of the prophet Ezekiel are fearfully applicable: "Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumbling-block of their iniquity before their face. Should I be inquired of at all by them?" "I the Lord will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols." [Ezekiel 14:3, 4.] Men may not bow down to idols of wood and stone, but all who love the things of the world and take pleasure in unrighteousness have set up idols in their hearts. The majority of professed Christians are serving other gods besides the Lord. Pride and luxury are cherished, idols are set up in the sanctuary, and her holy places are polluted.
Anciently the Lord declared to his servants concerning Israel: "The leaders of this people cause them to err, and they that are led of them are destroyed." [Isaiah 9:16.] "The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means, and my people love to have it so; and what will ye do in the end thereof?" [Jeremiah 5:31.] "For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them, every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest, every one dealeth falsely." [Jeremiah 6:13.] The Jewish church, once so highly favored of the Lord, became an astonishment and a reproach through neglect to improve the blessings granted them. Pride and unbelief led to their ruin. But these scriptures do not apply to ancient Israel only. The character and condition of many nominally Christian churches are here portrayed. Though in possession of far greater blessings than were granted to the Jews, they are following in the steps of that people; and the greater the light and privileges bestowed, the greater the guilt of those who permit them to pass unimproved.
The picture which the apostle Paul has drawn of the professed people of God in the last days is a sad but faithful delineation of the popular churches of our time. "Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof," "lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God," "lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud," [2 Timothy 3:2-7.]--such are a few specifications from the dark catalogue which he has given. And in view of the frequent and startling revelations of crime, even among those that minister in holy things, who dare affirm that there is one sin enumerated by the apostle which is not concealed under a profession of Christianity?
"But what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness?" "And what concord hath Christ with Belial?" "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. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean, and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty." [2 Corinthians 6:14-18.]
At the proclamation of the first angel's message, the people of God were in Babylon; and many true Christians are still to be found in her communion. Not a few who have never seen the special truths for this time are dissatisfied with their present position, and are longing for clearer light. They look in vain for the image of Christ in the church. As the churches depart more and more widely from the truth, and ally themselves more closely with the world, the time will come when those who fear and honor God can no longer remain in connection with them. Those that "believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness," will be left to receive "strong delusion," and to "believe a lie." [2 Thessalonians 2:11, 12.] Then the spirit of persecution will again be revealed. But the light of truth will shine upon all whose hearts are open to receive it, and all the children of the Lord still in Babylon, will heed the call, "Come out of her, my people."
Have You Oil in Your Vessels With Your Lamps?
"Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them; but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps."
Though five of these virgins are represented as wise and five as foolish, all had lamps.
They had all been convicted that they must prepare for the coming of the bridegroom, and all had gained a knowledge of the truth. There was no apparent difference between the wise and the foolish until the cry was made, "Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him;" but the true state of things was then developed. The wise had taken precautions to carry oil with them in their vessels, so that their lamps that were beginning to burn dimly might be replenished with oil; but the foolish had not provided for this emergency, and now they made an earnest, distressed petition to those who were wise. "And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out." They had neglected to prepare themselves to meet the bridegroom, and now turned to those who had provided themselves with oil. "But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you; but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves."
In reading this parable one cannot but pity the foolish virgins, and ask the question, Why is it that the wise did not divide their supply of oil?
But as we make the spiritual application of the parable, we can see the reason.
It is not possible for those who have faith and grace to divide their supply with those who have not.
It is not possible for those who have made a thorough heart work, to impart the benefit of this to those who have done but surface work.
The parable is designed to point out the peril of doing a surface work.
Many profess to be Christians, and for a time their half-heartedness is not discerned. The difference between them and those who are truly pious is not made apparent. This parable should awaken solemn reflections. Considering it we should ask ourselves, Are we doers of the words of Christ? Are we building on the rock? Are we, in our probationary time, making our calling and election sure? We should not soothe our consciences in expectation of heaven, when we are not bearing the distinguishing characteristics of the Christian life.
Paul says, "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves.
Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?"
All the ten virgins appeared to be ready for the coming of the bridegroom, and yet the test brought out the fact that five were unready. Those who have true piety esteem and revere the law of God. Through the grace of Christ they exemplify the principles of the law in their lives, and will not willfully break any of the commandments of God. They realize that "to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams." They yield to Christ, who leads men to repentance of sin, who pardons the penitent soul, and clothes him with his own righteousness. The converted soul has a hatred of sin; he does not indulge in self-complacency, self-love, self-sufficiency, nor pass on day after day, claiming to be a Christian, and yet bringing dishonor upon Christ by misrepresenting him in character. Those who make this mistake, and pass on filled with self-righteousness, have not in reality made the first step heavenward.
The first step toward heaven is conviction of sin, the second is repentance and obedience.
True piety never exalts self.
The foolish virgins do not represent those who are hypocritical. They had a regard for truth, they advocated the truth, they were intending to go forth to meet the bridegroom. They are attached to those who believe the truth, and go with them, having lamps, which represent a knowledge of the truth. When there was a revival in the church, their feelings were stirred; but they failed to have oil in their vessels, because they did not bring the principles of godliness into their daily life and character. They did not fall upon the rock Christ Jesus, and permit their old nature to be broken up. This class is represented also by the stony-ground hearers. Christ said: "Behold, a sower went forth to sow; and when he sowed, some seeds fell by the wayside; and the fowls came and devoured them up; some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth; and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth." Jesus explains these stony-ground hearers, and says, "But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for awhile; for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended."
Many receive the truth readily, but they fail to assimilate truth, and its influence is not abiding. They are like the foolish virgins, who had no oil in their vessels with their lamps. 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." "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God."
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.
Human nature is depraved, and is justly condemned by a holy God. But provision is made for the repenting sinner, so that by faith in the atonement of the only begotten Son of God, he may receive forgiveness of sin, find justification, receive adoption into the heavenly family, and become an inheritor of the kingdom of God. Transformation of character is wrought through the operation of the Holy Spirit, which works upon the human agent, implanting in him, according to his desire and consent to have it done, a new nature. The image of God is restored to the soul, and day by day he is strengthened and renewed by grace, and is enabled more and more perfectly to reflect the character of Christ in righteousness and true holiness.
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.
It is not a decided evidence that a man or a woman is a Christian because he manifests deep emotion when under exciting circumstances. He who is Christlike has a deep, determined, persevering element in his soul, and yet has a sense of his own weakness, and is not deceived and misled by the Devil, and made to trust in himself. He has a knowledge of the word of God, and knows that he is safe only as he places his hand in the hand of Jesus Christ, and keeps firm hold upon him.
Character is revealed by a crisis. When the earnest voice proclaimed at midnight, "Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him," the sleeping virgins roused from their slumbers, and it was seen who had made preparation for the event.
Both parties were taken unawares, but one was prepared for the emergency, and the other was found without preparation.
Character is revealed by circumstances.
Emergencies bring out the true metal of character.
Some sudden and unlooked-for calamity, bereavement, or crisis, some unexpected sickness or anguish, something that brings the soul face to face with death, will bring out the true inwardness of the character. It will be made manifest whether or not there is any real faith in the promises of the word of God. It will be made manifest whether or not the soul is sustained by grace, whether there is oil in the vessel with the lamp.
Testing times come to all. How do we conduct ourselves under the test and proving of God? Do our lamps go out? or do we still keep them burning? Are we prepared for every emergency by our connection with Him who is full of grace and truth?
The five wise virgins could not impart their character to the five foolish virgins.
Character must be formed by us as individuals.
It cannot be transferred to another, even if the possessor were willing to make the sacrifice.
There is much we can do for each other while mercy still lingers. We can represent the character of Christ. We can give faithful warnings to the erring. We can reprove, rebuke, with all long-suffering and doctrine, bringing the doctrines of Holy Writ home to the heart. We can give heartfelt sympathy. We can pray with and for one another. By living a circumspect life, by maintaining a holy conversation, we may give an example of what a Christian should be; but no person can give to another his own mold of character.
Let us duly consider the fact that we are to be saved, not as companies, but as individuals.
We shall be judged according to the character we have formed.
It is perilous to neglect to prepare the soul for eternity, and to put off making our peace with God until upon a dying bed.
It is by the daily transactions of life, by the spirit we manifest, that we determine our eternal destiny.
He who is faithful in that which is least, is faithful also in much. If we have made Christ our pattern, if we have walked and worked as he has given us an example in his own life, we shall be able to meet the solemn surprises that will come upon us in our experience, and say from our heart, "Not my will, but thine, be done."
It is in probationary time, the time in which we are living, that we should calmly contemplate the terms of salvation, and live according to the conditions laid down in the word of God. We should educate and train ourselves, hour by hour and day by day, by careful discipline, to perform every duty. We should become acquainted with God and with Jesus Christ whom he has sent. In every trial it is our privilege to draw upon him who has said, "Let him take hold of my strength, that he may make peace with me; and he shall make peace with me." The Lord says he is more willing to give us the Holy Spirit than parents are to give bread to their children. Then let us have the oil of grace in our vessels with our lamps, that we may not be found among those who are represented as foolish virgins, who were not prepared to go forth to meet the bridegroom.
“PREPARE TO MEET THY GOD”
Your brother in Christ
[Updated on: Thu, 14 January 2021 21:07]
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