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    July 7, 1898

    “The Miracles of Our Lord. Changing the Water into Wine” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner


    The purpose to be served in making the miracles of Jesus a part of the Gospel record is clearly stated in the Scripture itself: “These [miracles] are written, that ye may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye may have life in His name.” John xx. 31, R.V. In our study of the miracles, therefore, this object should be kept in view, that we “way lay hold on the life which is life indeed.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 417.1

    All the revealings of the power of God in the world about us teach the same lesson, when they are properly understood, and so the miracles should also serve as Divine interpretations of the Gospel of life and power which is praclaimed in the more familiar, and so less startling, operations of the same Master Workman. “The miracles of the Bible are not only emblems of power in the spiritual world, but also exponents of the miracles of nature-experiments, as it were, made by the Great Teacher in person, on a small scale and within a limited time, to illustrate to mankind the phenomena that are taking place over longer periods throughout the universe.” When thus viewed, they will not only teach their own lesson to us, but they will also throw such a light upon God's book of nature that we may read the same lesson on every page. And thus recognising constantly the presence and power of the living God in us and around us, we may learn to receive it in its fulness as “the power of all endless life.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 417.2

    The record of the miracle which we are to study in this lesson is brief, simple, and natural. It is God giving us a view, at close range, of His own mighty power with the simplicity of a father explaining his work to his little child for the purpose of encouraging confidence. And the account closes with these words: “This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth His glory; and His disciples believed on Him.” John ii. 11. In our study of the Holy Spirit's account of this miracle we should see the manifested glory just as clearly as did the disciples, and with the same result, believing for life in His name.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 417.3

    Note the simple facts: “They wanted wine:” “And there were set there six water-pots of stone;” “Jesus saith unto them, Fill the water-pots with water. And they filled them up to the brim. And He saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it.” Then the ruler of the feast tastes “the water that was made wine,” and immediately calls the bridegroom and says: “Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse; but then hast kept the, good wine until now.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 417.4

    We are not told how the water was changed into wine. In obedience to the word of Jesus, they poured the water into the water-pots, and in obedience to the same word they drew out and bare to the governor of the feast that which on tasting proved to be the best wine of the feast. There is one word, however, which gives all the explanation which is needed, and that word is “Jesus.” He is the Word of God, and “all things were made by Him; and without Him was not anything made that was made.” “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory.” And not only were all things made through Him, but He also is “upholding all things by the word of His power,” and “in Him all things consist,” or hold together.It is by the direct and constant revealing of the power of God through Jesus Christ, “the power of God,” that the orderly march of the stars and planets is maintained, and that the so-called operations of nature are carried forward. “My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.” And in performing this miracle Jesus is giving a sample, as it were, of His work and revealing Himself as the one through whose personal agency all the processes of vegetable growth and fruit-bearing are carried forward.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 418.1


    In the usual method of changing water into wine the vine is the visible means of accomplishing the work. The water which has been poured upon the ground by the showers of rain, is gathered up by the roots of the vine, carried up by the stock into the branches, and becomes the juice of the grapes. When the process is completed, and the grapes are subjected to pressure, then can be obtained the water which is now changed into wine. Several months are occupied in this work, which goes on quietly by day and by night. But Jesus has said, “I am the true [real] vine,” and the vines which we see in the gardens and the vineyards are not independent agencies for the changing of water into wine. They are simply the visible forms through which works the life of Jesus, the true vine, and as He at Cana of Galilee, dispensing with the usual visible forms of vegetable life, and disregarding the question of time, “manifested forth His glory,” by changing the water into wine; so He would teach us that the same glory is manifested when the same change is wrought by Him in the way so familiar to us. And as “His disciples believed on Him,” when they saw that which He did in Cana of Galilee, so would He have us believe on Him, when we see what He is doing in every garden and vineyard. And as this miracle was written in order that those who read it might by believing “have life through His name,” so viewing all the processes of growth and fruit-bearing in the light thrown upon them by this miracle, and reading them as so interpreted, we may by believing “have life through His name.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 418.2


    It is evident that the Gospel is preached to us in this miracle, and through its teaching we may see how the Gospel is preached to us in every garden and field. The Gospel is “the Gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” (2 Cor. iv. 4), “the Gospel of the glory of the blessed God” (2 Tim. i. 11, R.V.), and this glory is His goodness (Ex. xxxiii. 18, 19), His character, His righteousness. “The Gospel is the power of God unto salvation unto every one that believeth ... for therein is the righteousness of God revealed.” And so when Jesus at Cana of Galilee “manifested forth His glory,” by doing the work which He wrought that day, He was simply showing that the power which changes water into wine is the power which God uses with which to save believers. And the, glory which was then manifested is the glory which brings life to the dead, for “Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father” (Rom. vi. 1), and so recognising “the glory of His power” day by day as it is revealed to us in the true Vine, we who are “dead in trespasses” and sins, are quickened together with Christ and raised up together with Him and made to “sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.” But this is “the exceeding greatness of his power to usward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power which He wrought in Christ when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places.” And so “we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory.” And this is the work of the Gospel, that those who “have sinned and come short of the glory of God,” should once more be crowned with glory and honour.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 418.3


    It was the work of Jesus “to preach ... recovering of sight to the blind,” that we might be able to see Him as the true Vine, and so submit ourselves unto Him that He “who maketh grass to grow upon the mountains” and hangs the luscious fruit upon the branches of every vine and tree, may fill us “with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.” “I am the Vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in Me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without Me ye can do nothing.” And this is the Gospel which He would teach its in the miracle in Cana of Galilee.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 418.4

    “That Convenient Season” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    Paul was before Felix, reasoning of “righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come,” strong conviction seized the Roman governor, so that he trembled; but he was not willing to yield to it, so he said to the apostle, “Go thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee.” Acts xxiv. 20.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 418.5

    From what we know of the character of Felix it is quite likely that he had no intention of ever accepting Christ, and that his talk about “a convenient season” was only an excuse to Paul, and a means of throwing off conviction. But it is a fact that there are very many who say the same thing, who really think that at some time or other they will serve the Lord, and who by the plea of a convenient season delude themselves into believing that they are at present doing as well as can be expected of them.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 418.6

    One man says, “If I could get away from these associates, I would reform.” The youth thinks, “When I get it little older, temptations will not be so strong, and then I can serve the Lord” while the old man thinks, “If I were younger, it would be easy to be a Christian, hut now I am too old to change.” Another says, “If my circumstances were different, I would keep the Sabbath.” “As soon as I get out of debt,” or, “As soon as I can get out of this business, I will begin keeping all the commandments.” And thus people deceive themselves, and continue in sin.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 418.7

    They deceive themselves often into thinking that they are as good as they need be. For if it were true that they absolutely cannot it present serve the Lord, then of course it cannot be required of them. But the very statement of the case shows its fallacy; for there is no time when one ought not to serve the Lord. “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind.” Luke x. 27. This leaves no moment of one's existence when he its free not to serve the Lord; for if one does not serve God all the time, he is not serving Him with all his strength. It certainly is not serving God with all our strength, when we devote the most and best of it to self and the devil, before we begin to obey the Lord.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.1

    Sin is sin, no matter when or why it is committed. “Sin is the transgression of the law.” 1 John iii. 4. To do anything contrary to God's will, therefore, is sin. “To him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.” James iv. 17. Now when a person says that he intends to serve the Lord, or to begin some duty, at some other time, he shows that he knows that he ought to do it; and therefore by not doing it he convicts himself of sin. And yet by pleading inconvenience, and unfavourable circumstances, he makes himself believe that his sin is not really sin. He assumes great virtue to himself by thinking of what he would do if he were in the proper circumstances. Because he thinks he would if he could, he takes to himself the credit of the deed, and thus often goes along contentedly, and never finds the “convenient season” for which he is looking. So well satisfied does he become that he is doing the best he can, that no time ever seems to him convenient for changing his course.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.2

    Suppose now that the “convenient season” has come, or that the change in circumstances or associates has been effected, and that the person has changed his manner of life as he proposed to do; is he really any better than he was before? What think you? Certainly not; it is not he that has changed; it is only the circumstances. The conditions have changed; he remains the same as before. Since he began to serve the Lord (as he thinks) only when the conditions became favourable, it is evident that when the conditions become unfavourable again, he will leave off.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.3

    Does the man really accept Christ, when he professes to serve Him only at a more convenient season? Not by any means. He really dishonours Christ, bearing false witness against Him. Christ is a perfect Saviour. “He is able to save them to the uttermost who come unto God by Him.” All power in heaven and in earth is in His hands. He is the Head of all principality and power. He has power over all flesh. John xvii. 2. He has spoiled principalities and powers, and made a show of them openly, exhibiting them in triumph by His cross. Col. ii. 15. Even the bars and gates of death He has burst asunder, and “all the power of the enemy” was nothing to Him. Now what does the man say who pleads that his circumstances or temptations are such that he cannot now serve the Lord?—Why, he virtually charges Christ with lack of power to save him in his present condition. He limits the power of God. He does not accept Christ as a full and perfect Saviour, able to save one from the lowest depths, and to pluck a brand from the fire, or a soul from the jaws of the lion. But he who does not take Christ as a perfect and all-powerful Saviour, does not really accept Him at all; for Christ is nothing but perfection.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.4

    “Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” 2 Cor. vi. 2. Jesus is “mighty to save.” He says, “Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth.” Isa.. xlv. 22. “Him that cometh to Me, I will in no wise cast out.” John vi. 37. “Come unto Me, all ye that labour, and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matt. xi. 38. “I said not unto the seed of Jacob, Seek ye Me in vain; I the Lord speak righteousness, I declare things that are right.” Isa. xlv. 19. The Lord does not deceive anybody. He does not call all to Him to find present salvation, and then say to some, “I didn't mean you; your case is too difficult; I shall have to wait till a more convenient season.” No; He can save all, and He can save now.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.5

    Then turn to Him now. Why not have rest? See; you do not have rest now; for you admit that the conditions are too hard for you. Well, suppose your more convenient season came, what then? Why, those supposedly more favourable circumstances would be all that you could endure, if not more, so that even it you kept on with your profession, you would never know enjoyment and peace in the service of God. It would be a hard service to you, which shows that it would not be real service, for His yoke is easy, and His burden is light. But if you accept Him now, when everything seems to be the hardest and most unfavourable, you will find immediate rest. Then when the more favourable circumstances come, if there be any such, you can have so much the more ease in His service. So in Christ you will always find green pastures and still waters; a table will be spread for you in the presence of your enemies, and you can oat without fear. Being delivered out of the hand of your enemies, and from the band of all that hate you, you can serve the Lord without fear, in holiness and righteousness all the days of your life. Luke ii. 74, 75.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.6

    What is the assurance for this? The One who is made unto its “wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption,” is “the power of God.” 1 Cor. i. 34, 30. He in whose life we have redemption, is the One in whom all things were created, and in whom all things hold together. Col. i. 14-15. “All Lord God! behold, Thou hast made the heaven and the earth by Thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for Thee.” Jer. xxxii. 17. Then commit the keeping of your soul to Him in well-doing as unto a faithful Creator, and do it now.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.7

    “Notes on the International Sunday-School Lessons. Elijah on Carmel. 1 Kings xviii. 30-39” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    At the close of the “many days” (three years and one half, James v. 17) of drought, of which something was learned in the last lesson, “the word of the Lord came to Elijah in the third year, saying, Go, show thyself unto Ahab; and I will send rain upon the earth.” So the prophet and the king are brought face to face, and “Ahab said unto him, Art thou he that troubleth Israel? And he answered, I have not troubled Israel; but thou, and thy father's house, in that ye have forsaken the commandments of the Lord, and thou hast followed Baalim.” It is true that Elijah had said, “There shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word,” and because the blessing of rain had been withheld, the people had suffered exceedingly, “and there was a sore famine in Samaria, “but there was a cause back of all this, and that was that the true God had not been recognised as the giver of these blessings.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.8


    When God is recognised, and is acknowledged to be what He is in fact, the Creator of all, and therefore “Lord of all,” His commandments at once become the law of the life, and He is thus given His rightful place to rule in the hearts of men. But Israel had departed from the true God, and the blessings which He intended as a means of turning every one of them away from their iniquities (Acts iii. 36) were being so abused that their continuance only served to confirm the people in their sins, and so they are withheld as a means of again calling the attention of the people to Jehovah, the true God, who alone could cause the rain to fall. Thus does the Lord use every possible way, both by giving and by withholding blessings, in His efforts to reveal Himself to men as the only true and living God.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.9


    But Elijah now proposed a test which shall settle the rival claims of Jehovah and Baalim. He requested Ahab to gather together “all Israel unto mount Carmel,” together with the prophets of Baalim and the prophets of the groves. This was done, and then “Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow Him; but if Baalim, then follow him.” He then directed that the prophets of Baalim should prepare a sacrifice, and he would do the same, and “put no fire under,” “and call ye upon the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the Lord: and the God that answereth by fire, let him he God. And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken.” So the prophets of Baal prepared their sacrifice, “and called on the name of Baal from morning even unto noon saying, O Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any that answered.” “And it came to pass, when midday was past, and they prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that there was neither voice, nor any to answer, nor any that regarded.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.10

    Then Elijah called all the people unto him, and he “took twelve stones, according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, ... and with the stones he built an altar in the name of the Lord.” He then prepared his sacrifice, and three times he told the people to “fill four barrels with water, and pour it on the burnt sacrifice, and on the wood,” and it was done. In his brief prayer he said, “Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, let it be known this day that thou art God in Israel.... Hear me, O Lord, hear me, that this people may know that thou art the Lord God.” “Then the fire of the Lord fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench. And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The Lord, He is the God; the Lord, He is the God.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.11


    The question to be settled in Elijah's time was not a new one then, neither is it out of date to-day. From the time of the first solicitation to sin in the garden of Eden, until the end of the great controversy between Christ and Satan, the whole matter at issue is, Who is God? The inducement held out to depart from the commandment of the Lord in the first place was, “Ye shall be as God,” and Satan has sought ever since to inspire man with a sense of his own superiority, to fill him with his own spirit of disloyalty and rebellion, and to prevent him from acknowledging God as the rightful King over all the earth and from yielding loving obedience to Him as such. Sometimes Satan has worked in one way and sometimes in another, but his purpose is always the same, to turn man away from the true God. In order that man should be able to make an intelligent choice and that he might be drawn to God by seeing Him as He is, the Lord has through a succession of faithful servants in every age revealed Himself to the people, as He did through the ministry of Elijah.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.12


    The Old Testament scriptures closed with this prophecy: “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord,” and this was fulfilled in John the Baptist, whose work was done “in the spirit arid power of Elijah,” “to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” But this work of preparing a people for the Lord's coming was not completed in the time of John the Baptist, and will not be completed until He shall “appear the second time without sin unto salvation.” And as the fulfilment of the prophetic Word shows that “the great day of the Lord is near,” so the Elijah message in all its old-time power ought to he given now: “If the Lord be God, follow Him.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.13


    But the work of John the Baptist was also in direct fulfilment of the prophecy of Isaiah, “The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord.... Behold your God.” Isa. xl. 3-9. And the demand for this special message grew out of the fact that in the multitude of forms and ceremonies, and through following the traditions of men, the true character of God was being altogether hidden or misrepresented, and that righteousness which is “conformity of the heart and life to the revealed will of God” was lightly esteemed. So complete was this departure from God in John's day, and so little was His true character known even by those who professed to be His chosen representatives, that when Jesus appeared among them “the image of the invisible God,” they did not recognise Him, and John said, “There standeth one among you, whom ye know not.... Behold the Lamb of God that taketh away the sins of the world.” Prophecies were interpreted in harmony with their own ambitious desires for an earthly kingdom in which they should occupy the prominent places, and their religion degenerated into mere political scheming, a sort of “civic righteousness” or “Christian citizenship” affair, in which the Messiah could be made to serve their own selfish purposes. The leaders of the people, while professing to be loyal to the true God, had in reality gone after other gods just as surely as had king Ahab in the days of Elijah. And to them the message came: “Repent ye ... And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father,” “There cometh one mightier than I after me.” “Behold the Lamb of God.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 419.14


    It is one of the signs of the times that “in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, ... having the form of godliness but denying the power thereof.” 2 Tim. iii. 1-5. Forms and ceremonies, and “science falsely so called,” have been substituted for that true knowledge of God through which grace and peace are multiplied, the traditions of men have been followed instead of the Word of the living God, and so now that message is demanded which says, “Fear God, and give glory to Him; ... and worship Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.” The nothingness of man and the greatness of God, the inability of man to save himself and his consequent need of a mighty Saviour, man's weakness and God's power, “All flesh is grass,” “Behold your God,” this is the message which is now to go to “every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people.” And thus will the way of the Lord be prepared.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 420.1

    The lesson which was taught that day at Carmel is to be taught again “in the spirit and power of Elijah,” and the soul-stirring inquiry which was then made is to be repeated, “How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow Him: but if Baal, then follow him.” And each one is answering the question by the choice which he is daily making, and soon the decree will go forth, “He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: ... and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still.” Oh, that every one would say in his heart and in his life, “The Lord, He is the God; the Lord, He is the God.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 420.2

    “The Everlasting Gospel: God's Saving Power in the Things That Are Made” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner


    Ps. lxli. 11: “God hath spoken once, twice have I heard this; that power belongeth unto God.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.1

    Matt. vi. 13: “Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.2

    Rom. xiii. 1: “There is no power but of God.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.3

    John xix. 11: “Thou couldest have no power at all against Me, except it were given thee from above.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.4

    Isa. xl. 15, 17: “Behold, the nations are as a drop of a bucket, and are counted as the small dust in the balance: behold, He taketh up the Isles as a very little thing.” “All nations before Him are as nothing; and they are counted to Him less than nothing, and vanity.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.5

    1 Chron. xxix. 11, 12: “Thine, O Lord, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is Thine; Thine is the kingdom, O Lord, and Thou art exalted as Head above all. Both riches and honour come of Thee, and Thou reignest over all; and Thine hand is power and might; and in Thine hand it is to make great, and to give strength unto all.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.6

    Isa. xl. 29: “He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might He increaseth strength.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.7

    1 Cor. i. 24: “Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.8

    Col. ii. 2, 3: “Christ, In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.9

    Isa. xl. 2: “The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.10

    Jer. x. 10, 12: “The Lord is the true God, He is the living God, and an everlasting King.” “He hath made the earth by His power, He hath established the world by His wisdom, and hath stretched out the heavens by His discretion.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.11

    Matt. xxviii. 18: “Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.12

    Rom. i. 30: “The invisible things of Him,” “even His everlasting power and Divinity,” “are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.13

    2 Peter 1. 3: “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,”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.14

    Isa. liii. 11: “By His knowledge shall My righteous Servant justify many: for He shall bear their iniquities.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.15

    Read these texts until you cannot possibly forget what they say. Take them just as they say, and do not imagine that they mean something else. If the Lord had meant something else, He would have said it, instead of saying what He did. He who “giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding,” knows how to say what He means.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.16

    Know then, and understand, that there is absolutely no power in the universe, except the power of God.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.17

    Man has no power whatever in himself. Man is one of the things that God has made, and so the power that appears in him is the power of God, just the same as in the rest of creation.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.18

    Whatever power the faint receive, comes from God. It is His own power. God is the strength of His people. “The Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; He also is become my salvation.” Isa. xii. 2. Even the power that exalts itself against God, is God's power perverted. The kings of the earth and the rulers, with the people, moved by the devil, put Christ to death; but the power which they used so wickedly came from above.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.19

    Jesus Christ is the power of God, and the wisdom of God. Remember, He is the power and the wisdom. His Spirit is the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, and of counsel and might.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.20

    The Lord made the heavens and the earth by His power and His wisdom. That is, He made all things by Jesus Christ.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 421.21

    Without Christ, the Divine Word, the Power of God, not one thing was made; and He still upholds all things by the Word of His power. Heb. i. 3.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.1

    Thus all the power in heaven and in earth is His. There is no manifestation of power, force, or energy, as men call it, in the universe, except the personal presence of the living Christ, by the Spirit of power.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.2

    His everlasting power and Divinity are seen in all things.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.3

    His Divine power has given us all that is necessary to enable us to live godly lives. That is to say, The power which is given us, to enable us to live godly lives, is the Divine energy that is manifested in all created things, whether in heaven or on earth. He who is the wisdom and the power of God, and who is revealed in all the things that are made, is “of God made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.” 1 Cor. i. 30. Thus all the power of God manifested in all creation, is available for our salvation.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.4

    It is by the power and wisdom that made the universe, that the Lord justifies us, because He who bears all things bears our iniquities.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.5

    This power that works in heaven and in earth, in every created thing, is the power that is given by the Holy Spirit to all who yield themselves absolutely to the Lord. This is the power with which He sends them forth to teach all nations His truth.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.6

    “That hand which bears creation up
    Shall guard His children well.”
    PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.7

    “Power to Witness” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    “Ye, shall receive power when the Holy Ghost is come upon you; and ye shall be My witnesses ... unto the uttermost part of the earth,” said Christ. Acts i. 8.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.8

    In the same connection He also said, “All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore.” Matt. xxviii. 18.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.9

    Take these tests in connection with Rom. i. 20, which tells us that this power is seen in everything that has been made,-in the blade of grass, and in the hosts of the heavens,-and see what encouragement it is for all men.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.10

    We learn the power by which God works to save us front sill. Every soul who is longing for deliverance may know that “the power that worketh in us” to save, wherever we really desire salvation, is the power that supports and holds together the universe. Then Iet no one say or think that God cannot save a sinner such as he is. Nothing is too hard for the Lord. There is encouragement also to witness to the power of this salvation; for the power that saves is the power by which witnesses are sent forth. Nothing less than all power in heaven and in earth can save a man from sin; so that whoever is saved has all that power with which to proclaim the Word of truth, the Gospel of our salvation.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.11

    Notice that what is needed, and all that is promised, for the proclamation of the Gospel, is power. The Lord does not promise eloquence nor learning, but power. Paul was not destitute of that which in the world passes for wisdom, yet he says, “My speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power; that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” 1 Cor. ii. 4, 5.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.12

    It is power that tells. Not human power, but Divine power. “There is no power but of God,” so that all attempts to make an impression are vain. “He whom God hath sent, speaketh the words of God” (John iii. 34), and “the Word of God is quick, and powerful.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.13

    All therefore that is needed for the Gospel to go with power is to have a company of people fully yielded to God's power, that is, to His will, and saved by it. There need not necessarily be many. Twelve such men effected a mighty change in the world a few hundred years ago.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.14

    All are not apostles; all are not evangelists; all are not called to go as missionaries to other lands, or even to other neighbourhoods, than their own; but each one who is saved can witness to the power of Christ to save, with all the power by which he has been saved.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.15

    “God's Power in Man” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    There is no power in the universe except the power of God. This is plainly taught in the Scriptures, and is so self-evident as to need no argument.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.16

    “How then is man responsible for his actions?” is the question that some will ask. “Why isn't he as irresponsible as the beasts, or the plants of the field?” To many who ask this question, it seems unanswerable; but really it is a very shallow question, and shows wonderful lack of thought.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.17

    It is really sufficient answer to the question, to say that God did not make man to be a beast nor a vegetable. To say that God ought to save a man regardless of his actions, since all the power that is in him is the power of God, and man is not responsible for his acts, is inconsistent, in that it demands that God shall treat us as both vegetables and men. God does not save the beasts nor the vegetables of the field. He who wishes to disclaim all responsibility for his own acts, ought not to expect that God do anything else with him than let him go to destruction, just as he does other things that are irresponsible.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.18

    But the plants of the field, and the beasts, although irresponsible, fulfil the object of their existence, in that they do not resist the will of the Lord, while man does not do this; and therefore he cannot possibly be treated as an irresponsible being.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.19

    It is God's power in man, and yet every man has perfect freedom. God made man in His own image, to be a companion for Himself; but a cowering slave could not be a companion for God. There must be no fear, no restraint, in perfect companionship. Now it is utterly impossible for any man to exist apart from the power of God. No man can keep himself alive. So God mercifully exercises His own power in man's behalf, and whoever loves life will yield to that power. And since God's power is infinite, it follows that whoever yields to that power has unlimited freedom of action. Only the one who tries to resist the power,-he who rejects it,-finds himself fettered and limited.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 422.20

    God does not compel anybody to love Him. Rather, He does not try to it, since love cannot be forced. So if a person does not wish to love the Lord he need not; but all those who hate Him, love death (Prov. viii. 36), for He is the life.Thus everybody has before him the choice of life or death, and can have whichever he chooses. Surely that is fair. If man hates the life of God, if he refuses to yield to God's power, then he inevitably finds himself hampered and bound, because there is no power but of God, and he is shutting himself off from the source of supply. But if he yields to the power in its fulness, if he chooses life, then he is as free as God Himself, for the power which works in him unrestrained is the power that fills and upholds the universe. He can do whatever he pleases, and all that he does will prosper. Nowhere in the universe will such a man feel any restraint to his effort, for nowhere will he come to the limit of the power that works in him.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 423.1

    “Justified by Knowledge” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    “By His knowledge shall My righteous Servant justify many; for He shall bear their iniquities.” Isa. liii. 11. What knowledge of us has the Lord, and how does He have it? Thus: “The Word of God is living and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing even to the dividing of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and quick to discern the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is no creature that is not manifest in His sight; but all things are naked and laid open before the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.” Heb. iv. 12, 13, R.V.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 423.2

    There is nothing that the Lord does not know about men; and He knows it not by hearsay, not as the result of inquiry, but from actual experience. The Word that creates and upholds is present in every being, for the Word is the life. In every fibre of the body, there is the Word of God present. He knows the sins, because He bears them. The knowledge by which He justifies, is the knowledge of experience: for He bears the iniquities.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 423.3

    In the Lord power and wisdom are combined. There is power intelligently directed. His power is His wisdom, and His wisdom is powerful. Thus it is that there is no such thing as chance in the world; force does not act at random, but since it is God's own power, it acts a cording to the wisdom of God.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 423.4

    By His wisdom God has established the world, and by His discretion He has stretched out the heavens. By His knowledge He justifies. Thus we see that the wisdom and power that saves us from sin is identical with that which created and upholds the universe. What chance then is there for anybody to say, “I am such a sinner, that it doesn't seem possible that the Lord can save me?” Is anything too hard for the Lord? No one need philosophise or draw conclusions; all we have to do is to recognise and admit a simple fact, namely, that the Lord is the Creator. Give to God the glory that is His due. Worship Him that made heaven and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters, find you will never find any place for doubts as to the power of God to do whatever He pleases.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 423.5

    “For the Children. Thoughts for the Seaside” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    “And God said, Let the waters under the heaven he gathered together unto one place.” “And it was so.” “And the gathering together of the waters called He seas.” “He gathereth the waters of the sea together as an heap; He layeth up the depths in storehouses.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 426.1

    “Who shut up the sea with doors when it brake forth; when I established My decree upon it, and set bars and doors and said, Hitherto shalt thou come, but no further, and here shall thy proud waves be stayed?” “He gave to the sea His decree that the waters should not pass His commandment.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 426.2

    He hath “placed the sand for the bound of the sea by a perpetual decree that it cannot pass it, and though the waters thereof toss themselves, yet can they not prevail; though they roar, yet can they not pass over it.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 426.3

    “And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life.” “And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly.And God blessed them and said, Be fruitful and multiply, and till the waters in the seas.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 426.4

    “O Lord, how manifold are Thy works! in wisdom hast Then made them all, the earth is full of Thy riches. So is this great and wide sea, wherein are things creeping innumerable, both small and great great beasts. There go the ships: there is that leviathan whom Thou hast made to play therein. These wait all upon Thee, that Thou mayest give them their meat in due season. That Thou givest them they gather, Thou openest Thine hand, they are filled with good.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 426.5

    “They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in the great waters, these see the works of the Lord, and His wonders in the deep. For He commandeth and raiseth up the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. They mount up to heaven, they go down again to the depths.” “He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 426.6

    “The Lord on high is mightier than the noise of many waters, yea, than the mighty waves of the sea.” “Thou rulest the raging of the sea; when the waves thereof arise, Thou stillest them.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 426.7

    DEAR CHILDREN :—PTUK July 7, 1898, page 426.8

    As the holiday season is here again, many of you are looking joyfully forward to your yearly visit to the seaside. Here you will see “the works of the Lord, and His wonders in the deep.” No doubt the beach will be the most attractive place to you, where you will spend most of your time, digging in the sand and hunting for pretty shells and jelly fish and other such treasures with which to fill your little pails.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 426.9

    Perhaps you will notice what it is that makes the beach, that part of the shore that is washed by the sea. It is the Tide, which you may see all day either “coming in,” or “going out.” The beach is the, strip of land between high water and low water marks, so that when the tide is at its height the beach is quite covered with water. In some places where the shore slopes very gently, there is a very wide beach, and at high tide boats can sail where a short time before you have been able to walk. But where the coast is very steep and formed by high cliffs, there is no beach, but the tide only causes the water to rise and fall.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 426.10

    The tide comes in regularly every twelve hours. It is six hours coming in and six hours going out, but if you stay some little time at the seaside you will notice that it does not come in at exactly the same time every day. Yet we can always find out beforehand when it will be “high tide” and “low tide.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 427.1

    This is because there is a close connection between the tide and the movements of the sun, moon, and earth. At the times of the new and full moon the tide rises higher than usual; this is called the “spring-tide.” The lowest tide, called the “neap-tide,” is at the second and fourth quarters of the moon.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 427.2

    This earth, which seems to us so large, is but a tiny portion of God's great universe. And God Himself fills all the things that He has made. “Through all created things thrills one pulse of life from the great heart of God.” There is one life in all things, the life of God, and this is why all move together in perfect harmony.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 427.3

    He who “appointed the moon for seasons,” and makes the sun to know “his going down,” has also given “to the waters His decree.” We learned last week that it is the powerful word of God which does all His work. He says, “It shall accomplish that which I please.” Jesus says that the Word is “Spirit and life.” By filling all things with God's life, His living Word works His will in all His works.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 427.4

    So as you watch the constant movement of the waters, you call see the Word of God working, the “Spirit of God moving upon the face of the waters,” and keeping them in the place appointed by God, drawing them backwards and forwards according to His will.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 427.5

    The waters of the ocean are full of life. In the beginning God said, “Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life.” This is why we find in the great and wide sea” “things creeping innumerable.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 427.6

    At low tide you will find on the beach different kinds of shell fish and other tiny living creatures which, by the going out of the tide; are left out of the water. Some of these could not live if they were kept out of the water or in the water all the time. But by the coming in and going out of the tide they are kept a part of the time in the water, and a part of the time out of the water.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 427.7

    In this we see how that in all His great works, our Creator is working for the good of the tiniest of His creatures. We were talking last week of how the Lord cares for each little child, and takes care of all the little boys and girls that He brings into the world. But this will teach us that “The Lord is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works.” “Thou hast male heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all things that are thereon, the seas and all that is in them, and Thou preservest them all.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 427.8

    “The Witness of the Heavens” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    “The heavens declare the glory of God.” In their ever-changing beauty, the sunny days and starry nights show forth “the wondrous works of Him which is perfect in knowledge.” Nor does the firmament reveal Him only as a Being of infinite power, at the thought of whom the inhabitants of the earth should tremble. “Thy mercy, O Lord, is in the heavens; and Thy faithfulness reacheth unto the clouds.” “Thy faithfulness shalt Thou establish in the very heavens.” So morning by morning as we rise from our sleep, and behold the rays of the sun once more, its beams bring the glad message that “the mercy of the Lord endureth” still.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 428.1

    What a blessed thought with which to begin the day! That which smites upon our eyelids in the summer mornings and gently calls us from slumber is the greeting of the heavens, bidding us be of good cheer, whatever the day may bring, for since God's mercy is over us still, “as thy days so shall thy strength be.” “His compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is Thy faithfulness.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 428.2

    If we be conscious of unworthiness, of sinful deeds and stubborn hearts, still the sun shines even to us, and thereby we learn that the mercy and faithfulness which the heavens reveal, are not yet worn out for us. “He is kind unto the unthankful.” “He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good,” and therein, Christ taught, He loves them that hate Him.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 428.3

    Nor when the sun gets on the horizon, may we think that the powers of darkness prevail, and the evidence of His faithfulness grows dim. Throughout the twenty-four hours He leaves not Himself without witness. To those who fear that their way is hid from the Lord, and that His watch-care is withdrawn, He says, “Lift up your eyes on high and see who hath created these, that bringeth out their host by number: He calleth them all by name; by the greatness of His might, and for that He is strong in power, not one is lacking.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 428.4

    As far as the lights of heaven shine, so far goes the message of God's mercy. As unsearchable as the expanse of heaven is the length and breadth and height and depth of His infinite love; and as free as is the vision of God's glory to the eyes of men, is the free gift of the righteousness, which is the glory of God, unto all and upon all them that believe.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 428.5

    “Thus saith the Lord, which giveth the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and stars for a light by night.... if those ordinances depart from before Me, then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before Me for ever.” “If heaven above can be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off all the seed of Israel for all that they have done.” “They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 428.6

    Those who have believed God's promise and trust Him for salvation, need never fear that He will suffer His faithfulness to fail, nor alter the thing that is gone out of His lips, so long as they can see the sun and moon in the heavens; for, “His seed shall endure for ever, and His throne as the sun before Me. It shall be established for ever as the moon.” Then so long as men have reason to think that the morning will bring them the sunlight, and night be made beautiful with stars, they have no less reason to be confident that He whom they have believed, will keep that which they have committed unto Him.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 428.7

    “Back Page” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    “God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all.” 1 John i. 5.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.1

    “All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” Rom. iii. 23. Sin is therefore the absence of glory; it is darkness.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.2

    Thus we see that the glory of God is His righteousness. He is righteousness; that is His being. But He is light. The glory that shines from Him is the shining out of His character. He is light, and the light that shines from Him is the light of His life.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.3

    “Christ is the image of the invisible God” (Col. i. 15), the brightness, the effulgence, the shining forth of His glory. Heb. i. 3.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.4

    “The Lord God is a sun and shield.” Ps. lxxxiv. 11. Christ is the shining of God's glory, which is His righteousness, so that He is “the Sun of righteousness.” Mal. iv. 2.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.5

    Jesus said, “I am the light of the world; he that followeth Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” John viii. 13. After stating at one time that He is the light of the world, He showed the reality of it by giving sight to a man born blind. John ix. Jesus is the light of the world, by which men see to go about.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.6

    The Lord is upright; “He is my Rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.” Ps. xcii. 15. Thus it is that He is the Sun of righteousness, for He is the light of the world. The light, therefore, which shines upon this earth is the righteousness of God in Christ.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.7

    “The heavens declare the glory of God.” Ps. xix. 1. He has set His glory upon the heavens. Ps. viii. 1, R.V. The sun but transmits to us the light that emanates from “the eternal Father.” But that light is God's own character, His own personality. Therefore the sun brings to us the righteousness of God.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.8

    The true light is that which “lighteth every man that cometh into the world.” John i. 9. The sun lights and warms the whole earth. “His going forth is from the end of the heaven, and his circuit unto the ends of it; and there is nothing hid from the heat thereof. The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.” Ps. xix. 6-8. Thus we see that the law of God, the living righteousness of God, has been and is given to every man on earth. “The grace of God that bringeth salvation bath appeared to all men.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.9

    What then shall we do? Take the light as God's own gift, His own life, and rejoice in it. “If we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son uleaneeth us from all sin.” 1 John i. 7. “In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” Prov. iii. 6. Acknowledge God in the light, which shines constantly, and God will make you righteous. He will shine righteousness into your hearts. Oh, what a glorious thing light is! “Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable gift.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.10

    The Echo says that a union between the British Empire and the States “would be strong enough to impose peace upon the world.” The States are just now engaged in “imposing peace” on Spain. War is the only way the world has of imposing “peace.” When therefore Great Britain and the United States unite in imposing peace on the rest of the world, the result will be worldwide war.That will be the only result of the much-talked-of alliance. It will be the last great revolution or overturning of history, and will end in the taking of the reins of the government of this earth by Him “whose right it is” (Eze. xxi. 37), who makes peace because “He is our peace.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.11

    It is noted as an exhibition of the finest and of the worst traits of the English character, that a young man employed in the ship yard where the terrible calamity took place at the launching of the Albion, promptly dived into the water, and swam to the rescue, and in seven journeys succeeded in bringing seven persons ashore; but while he was thus engaged some one stole his watch find clothes, and made off with them. We need not, however, set this last thin- down as peculiarly English; it was a manifestation of human nature, such as is found all over the world. And as to the first man, who risked his life to save others, since every good thing is from above, we may recognise; in his action the prompting of the Divine nature,-the working of Him who came “seeking to save,” and who “gave Himself a ransom for many.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.12

    “‘Divine Service’” The Present Truth 14, 27.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In the Court notices in one of the papers a few days ago, where some Court function was described, it was stated that “Divine service was afterward performed in the private chapel.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.13

    It is to be feared that this language but too literally expresses what actually took place, and what many services in churches and chapels are, namely, a performance. Ceremonies performed, and forms gone through constitute too much of what is called Divine service. Prayers are “said,” and the exercises are gone through with after a fixed programme, very much in the same way as would be the case with a concert. This is the case not only with those whose service follows a fixed ritual, but all others are prone to fall into ruts, and the repetition of cant phrases which either have no meaning, or else are gone over without thought.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.14

    But what a sad commentary it is on the extent to which real service of God has been crowded out, that by “Divine service” is generally understood nothing but stated exercises in a church building! That may be Divine service, or it may not be; but the whole life of the worshipper is that which determines the fact. Divine service is the service of the daily life. The house servants who labour “in singleness of heart, fearing God,” doing all things heartily, “as to the Lord, and not unto men,” knowing that they “serve the Lord Christ” (Col. iii. 22-24), are doing, not performing, the true Divine service.PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.15

    This is not a disparagement of “the assembling of yourselves together;” that is necessary; but let us beware of narrowing our ideas of Divine service down to mere going to meeting, to singing hymns, and saying prayers. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not despise.”PTUK July 7, 1898, page 432.16

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