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    July 22, 1908

    “Through the Bible. The Redemption.—III” The Medical Missionary, 17, 29, pp. 581-583.

    ATJ

    ALONZO T. JONES

    “AND the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever; therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.”MEDM July 22, 1908, page 581.1

    “The man is become as one of us.” Satan had said to the woman, “In the day ye eat thereof.... ye shall be as God.” (R.V.) And in a way, that is in Satan’s way, this had come true. For, as the direct consequence of his having now the mind of Satan, the mind that “is enmity against God,” the mind of self-exaltation, in his own estimation the man has ever considered himself of God, in the place of God, and above God.MEDM July 22, 1908, page 581.2

    This is the natural and spontaneous disposition of the mind that man received from Satan that day, the mind that “is enmity against God.” And everywhere, throughout all history, wherever the man has shown himself forth just as he is in this natural mind, he has invariably set himself up as God in the place of God, and even “above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself off for God.”MEDM July 22, 1908, page 581.3

    And in view of this native trait of man in possession of the carnal mind; God appeals to him, in these gracious words “He hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee; but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to humble thyself to it walk with God” (Micah 6:8, margin.) The man is so exalted, so above God, that in order to “walk with’” God he must be content to humble himself to the lower plane.MEDM July 22, 1908, page 581.4

    Accordingly, the divine exhortation to man from that day, to this is, “Let this mind be you that was also in Christ Jesus; who, being in the form of God; thought it not robbery [a thing to be seized upon and held fast as a robber, his prey] to be equal with God, but emptied himself took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men, and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the Cross.”MEDM July 22, 1908, page 581.5

    “To know good and evil.” For any creature to know good and evil, is in fact and in practice to know only evil; for whatever he may know, it is certain that he does only evil. Good and evil in the same place at the same time, good and evil mixed, is only evil, just as food and poison in the same place at the same time, food and poison mixed, is only poison. Therefore no creature is ever to seek to know good and evil, but only good; for to know good and evil, is surely to do only evil in spite of all the good that he may know, and against all his desire to do the good. Read again Romans 7:14-24.MEDM July 22, 1908, page 581.6

    No, no. “Refuse the evil, choose the good.” Seek only the good. Know only the good. “Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” The good is of God only. To seek only the good is to seek only God. To know only the good is to know only God. (Matthew 19:17.) “The fruit of the Spirit is... goodness.” “Ask and ye shall receive. “Receive ye the Holy Ghost.”MEDM July 22, 1908, page 581.7

    “Lest he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat and live forever, the Lord God sent him out of the garden. This sending the man from the garden, and from the tree of life, was the only way of deliverance of the man from sin and death. He was now in sin and was a sinner. To eat of the tree of life and so live forever, would have been to eternalize sin and sinners. Therefore the Lord drove out the man, separating him from the tree of life, “that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is the devil, and deliver them who, through fear of death, were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” Hebrews 2:14, 15.MEDM July 22, 1908, page 581.8

    “The Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground.” Before the Lord sent the man forth “to till the ground,” he had said to him, “Cursed is the ground for thy sake; thorns and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; ... in the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread.” And this is an element in the deliverance of man from sin, an element in the work of redemption.MEDM July 22, 1908, page 582.1

    Even before sin had ever entered the world, when the man was first created and put in the garden, it was with the purpose that he should work. For it is observed that before the man was created, “there was not a man to till the ground.” And when he had been created, the Lord “put him in the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.” (Genesis 2:5, 15.) Thus industrial occupation was essential to the welfare of man in his very creation, and in paradise, when he was in that blissful state which he was to enjoy forevermore.MEDM July 22, 1908, page 582.2

    And when this was essential to man’s welfare when he was in righteousness, perfection, and paradise, how much more is it essential when he has fallen into an and imperfection! Therefore in this latter state, since work is the more needed for his welfare, for his sake the ground is caused to require more labor in the dressing and the keeping of it, that it shall supply to man the heeded sustenance.MEDM July 22, 1908, page 582.3

    It is therefore an utter mistake to think that manual labor is in any sense a curse, or that it is any part of the curse. Yet it can not be denied that multitudes of people do think that such labor is akin to a curse, if not the very original curse itself. Indeed, even many Christians so misread the word of God as to make it appear that the requirement that man shall eat bread by the sweat of his face, is a material part of the curse.MEDM July 22, 1908, page 582.4

    It is not so. The word of the Lord to man is, “Cursed is the ground for thy sake; ... in the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread.” When a thing is done for my sake, this is evidence of special thought, care, and consideration for me, and of good will to me. The ground was thus cursed for man’s sake. Then that curse upon the ground for the man’s sake, was to the man not a curse, but a blessing. And such is the kind, benign, and wise provision for mankind, “In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread.”MEDM July 22, 1908, page 582.5

    And let there ever be kept in mind the thought that there is in all this a moral element. While the man was sinless, there was in the earth no untoward elements; and his occupation was only in the perfect abundance of all that was good in the earth, “to dress it and to keep it.” But after the man had fallen into sin, and when God would save him from the increase of work is supplied, and “for his sake.” And though it is now actual labor, and this to the extent of “the sweat of his face,“—not the sweat of his “brow,” but the sweat of his face,—yet it is all “for his sake.”MEDM July 22, 1908, page 582.6

    And all this reveals the mighty truth that work, manual labor, industrial occupation, holds an important place as an element in the recovery of man from the inroad of sin, and in the development of the morals of Christian; character. And this is fully confirmed by the life of the Saviour on earth as “the Way” of salvation and redemption of man. For, counting from the time that he was twelve years old in the flesh, to the time of his baptism, when he entered specifically upon his teaching and ministry, he spent nearly six times as much of his life on earth the daily occupation of manual labor as he spent in the direct work of his public ministry.MEDM July 22, 1908, page 582.7

    Now it can never be said that the Lord of heaven and earth as man learned the carpenter’s trade and spent eighteen years at it, with the purpose of having a safeguard, if possible he might need it, “some time” as a means of “making a living.” No! The Lord Jesus on earth was the moral Man, the Pattern of what every man must be to be a perfect man; that is, to be a Christian. He was just as much the Saviour of the world when he was sawing boards and making benches and tables as he was when he was preaching the Sermon on the Mount. This fact in the life of the Lord, therefore, demonstrates that in manual labor, honest work at honest occupation, there is that which, as a moral element, is valuable to man for itself alone; and as a factor in the solution of the mighty problem of the redemption of man.MEDM July 22, 1908, page 582.8

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