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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 24 (1909)

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    Ms 91, 1909

    Sermon/Thoughts on John 17

    Boulder, Colorado

    September 4, 1909

    Portions of this manuscript are published in RH 01/13/1910.

    Mrs. E. G. White, Boulder, Colorado, Sabbath, September 4, 1909.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 1

    “These words spake Jesus, and lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify Thy Son, that Thy Son also may glorify Thee; as Thou hast given Him power over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as Thou hast given Him. And this is life eternal, that they might know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent.” [John 17:1-3.]24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 2

    The eternal life, of which the Saviour speaks, He clearly defines. Let us seek to understand the full meaning of these words:24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 3

    “I have glorified Thee on the earth,” the Saviour continued: “I have finished the work which Thou gavest Me to do. And now, O Father, glorify Thou Me with Thine own self with the glory which I had with Thee before the world was. I have manifested Thy name unto the men whom Thou gavest Me out of the world: Thine they were, and Thou gavest them Me; and they have kept Thy word. Now they have known that all things whatsoever Thou hast given Me are of Thee. For I have given unto them the words which Thou gavest Me; and they have received them; and have known surely that I came out from Thee, and they have believed that Thou didst send Me. I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which Thou hast given Me; for they are Thine. And all Mine are Thine, and Thine are Mine; and I am glorified in them.” [Verses 4-10.]24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 4

    I pray that these words may have due weight upon our hearts at all times and in all places. There are many among us who have not considered it their privilege to understand the mystery of godliness; but if they would do this, they would come up on to a higher plane of action.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 5

    “And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to Thee. Holy Father, keep through Thine own name those whom Thou hast given Me, that they may be one, as We are. While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Thy name: those that Thou hast given Me I have kept; and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled. And now come I to Thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have My joy fulfilled in themselves. I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I pray not that Thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that Thou shouldest keep them from the evil.” [Verses 11-15.]24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 6

    It is important that those who are striving for eternal life understand the statement of Christ regarding the means of their sanctification. The Saviour prayed for His disciples, “Sanctify them through Thy truth; Thy word is truth. As Thou hast sent Me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.” [Verses 17-19.] Unless we have the sanctification of the Spirit of God, the truth that we claim to believe will be of little advantage to us.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 7

    “As Thou hast sent Me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.” [Verse 18.] It is not for the professing believer to sit down and take life easily, as though there were nothing to be done. There is a great work to be accomplished, and every one who attains unto eternal life is to co-operate with Jesus Christ. “Neither pray I for these alone,” the Saviour said, “but for them also that shall believe in Me through their word; that they all may be one, as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us: that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me. And the glory which Thou gavest Me, I have given them; that they may be one, even as We are one: I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that Thou hast sent Me, and hast loved them, as Thou hast loved Me.” [Verses 20-23.]24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 8

    Ministers and people are included in these words. All are to be one, even as Christ was one with the Father. There can be no perfection in division. Those who believe in Jesus Christ will be one in their interest for the souls who are perishing out of Christ. The fact is that we have lost sight of our individual responsibility, and we need to take it up in the name of the Lord. When this prayer of Christ’s is answered for His people in this age, when this unity exists among Seventh-day Adventists, there will be a tremendous influence going forth from them to the world. Reformations will take place; first in our own ranks, and then in those for whom we labor, will be seen the transformation of character for which Christ so earnestly prayed.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 9

    “Father, I will that they also whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am; that they may behold Thy glory, which Thou hast given Me: for Thou lovedst Me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, the world hath not known Thee: but I have known Thee, and these have known that Thou hast sent Me. And I have declared unto them Thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith Thou hast loved Me may be in them, and I in them.” [Verses 24-26.]24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 10

    “When Jesus had spoken these words, He went with His disciples over the brook Cedron, where was a garden, into the which He entered, and His disciples. And Judas also, which betrayed Him, knew the place: for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither with His disciples. Judas therefore, having received a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons. Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon Him, went forth and said unto them, Whom seek ye? They answered Him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am He. And Judas also, which betrayed Him, stood with them. As soon as He had said unto them, I am He, they went backward, and fell to the ground.” [John 18:1-6.]24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 11

    Christ could have delivered Himself from the hands of His enemies, had He chosen to do so. But He was sent to bear the sins of the world, and He must pay the penalty of man’s transgression. “Then asked He them again, Whom seek ye? and they answered, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus answered, I have told you that I am He: if therefore ye seek Me, let these go their way: that the saying might be fulfilled which He spake, Of them which Thou gavest Me have I lost none.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 12

    “Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his ear. The servant’s name was Malchus. Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which My Father hath given Me, shall I not drink it? Then the band and the captain and the officers of the Jews took Jesus, and bound Him, and led Him away to Annas first; for he was father-in-law to Caiaphas, which was high priest that same year. Now Caiaphas was he which gave counsel to the Jews, that it was expedient that one man should die for the people.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 13

    “And Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple: that disciple was known unto the high priest, and went in with Jesus into the palace of the high priest. But Peter stood at the door without. Then went out that other disciple, which was known unto the high priest, and spake unto her that kept the door, and brought in Peter. Then said the damsel that kept the door unto Peter, Art not thou also one of this man’s disciples? He saith, I am not. And the servants and officers stood there, who had made fire of coals; for it was cold: and they warmed themselves: and Peter stood with them, and warmed himself.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 14

    “The high priest then asked Jesus of His disciples and of His doctrine. Jesus answered him, I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing. Why askest thou Me? Ask them that heard Me what I have said unto them: behold, they know what I said. And when He had thus spoken, one of the officers which stood by struck Jesus with the palm of his hand, saying, Answerest Thou the high priest so? Jesus answered him, If I have spoken evil, bear witness of the evil: but if well, why smitest thou Me?” [Verses 7-23.]24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 15

    I ask you to read these Scriptures at your leisure, and as you read remember that your salvation has been purchased at infinite cost, and that because of this solemn responsibilities rest upon you. I will leave these words with you, and will ask you to consider another Scripture which has a special bearing upon us as a people at this time.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 16

    Luke, writing in the first and second chapters of Acts, says, “The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, until the day in which He was taken up, after that He through the Holy Ghost had given commandment unto the apostles whom He had chosen: to whom also He showed Himself alive after His passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God: And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which saith He, ye have heard of Me. For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 17

    “When they therefore were come together, they asked of Him, saying, Lord, wilt Thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? And He said unto them, It is not for you to know the times and the seasons which the Father hath put into His own power. But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witness unto Me, both in Jerusalem and in Judea, and in all Samaria, and unto the uttermost parts of the earth.” [Acts 1:1-8.]24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 18

    “And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak in other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 19

    “And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men out of every nation under heaven. Now when this was noised abroad the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language. And they were all amazed and marveled, saying, Behold, are not all these which speak Galileans? And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born? ... And they were all amazed, and were in doubt, saying one to another, What meaneth this? Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 20

    “But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judea, and all ye that dwell in Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken unto my words, for these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing that it is but the third hour of the day. But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel: And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy; and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams. And on my servants and on my handmaidens will I pour out of My Spirit in those days, and they shall prophesy: and I will show wonders in the heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke: the sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and notable day of the Lord come: and it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” [Acts 2:1-8, 12-21.]24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 21

    My brethren and sisters, let us study to know what is the work devolving upon us individually. You have something to do for those who are around you, and for those afar off. We have no right to devote all our means for the enjoyment of our present life. We have no right to spend dollars to glorify and indulge self. The judgments of God that are coming upon the earth are certainly not far off, and we should be up and doing our part. As we consider what Christ has suffered for us, we should seek to come into a position of self-denial and self-sacrifice, that we may help in the salvation of the souls that are in peril of everlasting destruction. We can have no excuse to offer to God for neglect of this work.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 22

    Are we getting ready for the judgment? Are we preparing to meet the Lord? There is a work to be done for those who are afar off and for those who are nigh. We are to enter cities and towns and villages that have been left without the message of warning for these last days. We do not realize how near we are to the end of this earth’s history. We do not realize the value of the souls for whom Christ gave His precious life. We need to put on the robe of Christ’s righteousness and work in harmony with Him, in harmony with His ministers, in harmony with all who truly believe the truth for this time.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 23

    My brethren and sisters, we are not half awake. We do not half appreciate the precious time that is passing into eternity. Many are clinging to their old habits and practices, and some are even denying Christ as Peter did. These lose the blessing that they would have at every step if they would follow on to know the Lord. Let us press together. It is no time now for us to quarrel among ourselves, no time to draw apart. Let us not thus counterwork the work that God is seeking to do for us and through us. We need the cementing power of the Spirit of God to come upon this people.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 24

    God has a work for His people to do for the world; and if they will work in harmony with one another and with heaven, He will demonstrate His power in their behalf as He did for His first disciples on the day of Pentecost. Those days of preparation in which the disciples prepared themselves by prayer and a putting away of all disunion brought them into such close relation to God that he could work for them and through them in a marvelous manner. Today God desires to accomplish great things through the faith and works of His believing people. But we need to stand in right relation to God, that we may understand His voice when He speaks to us.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 25

    As a people we have had great light and many privileges, yet we are far behind where we should be in advanced spirituality. Every sanitarium, every institution in our ranks should stand forth as a representative of the living principles of truth. In every department of their work, God’s glory and the advancement of His kingdom should be the first consideration. If the workers in these institutions do not do this, they will be held accountable for the souls that are lost as the result of their unconsecrated lives.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 26

    The Lord wants us to come into line. He wants us to realize the precious privileges that are ours if we will come into right relation to Him. There are in our institutions some who have no understanding of what it means to be truly converted to God. Mental and physical powers are unconverted; their lips speak unsanctified words. Night after night I am unable to sleep because of the representations that are made to me regarding these things. Some of our people are doing all they can to stand in right relation to God, but others are pulling back. There are some who, because of their lack of consecration, are hindering souls from coming to Christ.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 27

    Our medical institutions should stand where the glory of God can be clearly revealed through them. It used to be so in the beginning of our work when the sanitarium was first established at Battle Creek. Now we have sanitariums in many places. An important question for us to answer is, Who shall occupy the positions of greater or less responsibility in these institutions. It should be those whose daily lives emit the light of truth, who with sanctified tongues speak only those words that will prove a blessing to others. If the work is done that God desires to see accomplished as the result of the establishment of our sanitarium work, we cannot hold in these institutions workers who give evidence that they are unconverted. We must have those who are wholly surrendered to God. Time is passing, and souls are perishing for lack of the truth. Let the light shine forth from our sanitariums in clear, distinct rays. May the God of Israel impress upon the hearts and minds of our people the sacredness and the importance of the work to be done. If men and women will co-operate with God with all the powers of their being consecrated to Him, they will stand as ministers of righteousness to their fellow beings.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 28

    I know the burdens that many of our sanitariums carry, and I am instructed to say to those in positions of responsibility in these institutions, Be careful whom you select to connect with the sanitarium. Let every influence be of such a character as will draw with Christ. Then the sick will understand that Christ is there. Let the meek and lowly Saviour be represented in the dress of the workers, in the words they speak, in the spirit they manifest. And if there are those who will not come into harmony, let them go to some other place where there is not so much at stake.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 29

    The blessing of God is waiting to come in large measure upon the workers in the Boulder Sanitarium. I have seen angels of God hovering, hovering, hovering over the workers there. But there are some who refuse to be converted. They feel too important to come under discipline to God. Let the workers understand that they are responsible to God to see that the best influence is exerted in this institution, that the salvation of God may be revealed. The Lord desires to see each one acting his part intelligently as a laborer together with Him, that the light of heaven may come into our institutions and a wonderful work be done.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 30

    Instruction was given me in the night season that I must bear my message to this people, for I was shown that there are those who greatly need a deep heart work done for them. They do not receive enough of the Spirit of God, gained by fasting and earnest prayer. They need to get a view of the heavenly angels co-operating with the human agents for the uplifting of men. They need to accept the promises and assurances of God and walk out on them in faith. They need to learn how to present the truths of the Word to those around them in all their binding force and in all their encouragement, that the sick may feel the influence of the Spirit of God upon heart and mind and character and be converted.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 31

    May God bless you, my brethren and sisters. My heart is drawn out in tenderness and love for you. You are a large company here. Will you not consecrate yourselves to God? We invite you to come to Jesus, to believe in Him, and receive from Him the outpouring of His Holy Spirit. He will give you this if you will ask in faith believing. Then work in harmony with Him to disseminate truth. Let us not go away from this meeting unconverted. If you will seek to answer in your lives individually the last prayer of Christ for His disciples, you will follow on to know the Lord. And you will find that His goings forth are prepared as the morning. This is not like the fading strength and glory of the setting sun. He likens the Christian’s experience to the morning, the rising sun, which is ever increasing in warmth and light and power.24LtMs, Ms 91, 1909, par. 32

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