Larger font
Smaller font
  • Results
  • Related
  • Featured
No results found for: "".
  • Weighted Relevancy
  • Content Sequence
  • Relevancy
  • Earliest First
  • Latest First
    Larger font
    Smaller font


    THE idea seems to have taken strong hold of some minds, that when the work of atonement commences in the most holy place of the sanctuary above, mercy can no longer be offered to sinners, but probation must close. And this is offered as an objection to our view that the cleansing of the sanctuary commenced in 1844; for, say they, had that been the case, there could have been no conversions since that time; but as sinners have been converted since that point, they conclude that the cleansing of the sanctuary did not then commence.STTHD 289.1

    But who has said that probation must close when our Lord commences to minister in the most holy place? No inspired writer has said such a thing, and it is not in the type. It is answered that all offerings for sin were to be presented at the door of the tabernacle; this is true; but an assumption must be superadded to that fact to make it available as an objection; and that assumption is this: that our prayers, supplications, and confessions of sin, are our offerings; that consequently we can present them nowhere else than at the door of the tabernacle, and can present them there only while the High Priest ministers in the first apartment; for after he has changed his position to the second apartment, no such offerings can longer be accepted, no more mercy be offered, nor probation continued.STTHD 289.2

    Such betray an utter misapprehension of the whole question; for they make our prayers and confessions the antitype of those ancient offerings. What! can any one for a moment suppose that when a person offered up his victim at the earthly tabernacle, it signified that people under the gospel dispensation would pray, and confess their sins! This we are indeed to do; but the ancient offerings had no connection with this; for they all pointed forward to Christ; and when our friends will take the right antitype, they may lay as much stress as they please upon the locality where it is to be offered; for Christ also “suffered without the gate.” Hebrews 13:12.STTHD 290.1

    But if Leviticus 17, which is supposed to prove that forgiveness of sin can be found only in the first apartment, be examined as far as verse 7, it will be seen that the great object of the special charge to bring their offerings to the door of the tabernacle, was to prevent the people from sacrificing in the fields to devils. This therefore in no way contradicts the testimony of Leviticus 16, that the high priest with the blood of sin-offering did make atonement in the holiest because of the transgression of the people in all their sins.STTHD 290.2

    Reference was made in the preceding chapter to those offerings which are supposed to be preliminary to the work of atonement or the cleansing of the sanctuary. As already stated, the position is taken by some that we are now in this preliminary work, and the matter of continued probation is got along with on the supposition that these preliminary offerings might have reference to individual cases, and have reference to particular sins.STTHD 291.1

    We inquire for the foundation upon which this supposition rests. It is said that the work in the holiest was not the offering of blood for particular individuals, but for all the people. Then we answer that these preliminary offerings, to which reference has already been made, were of precisely the same nature. They were not offered by individuals, but, like the daily morning and evening sacrifices, were offered in behalf of the whole people. So there is just as much mercy implied in the sin-offering in the holiest, as in the other offerings presented on that day. We do not deny, but on the other hand fully maintain, that these offerings did imply mercy and the forgiveness of sin for the people. But if so, there was forgiveness of sin to be found while the high priest was presenting his offering in the most holy place.STTHD 291.2

    If it be said that the work in the holiest was to cleanse the sanctuary, we reply that it cannot be said that it was only to cleanse the sanctuary, which would make quite a different statement of it. It is true it was to cleanse the sanctuary, but this is not the whole truth on this point. It was also for the people, availing for sins committed up to the moment of its offering. The high priest made atonement for the sins of the people on that day just as much as he did for his own sins. Read carefully Leviticus 16 and Hebrews 9:7.STTHD 292.1

    Now, we affirm that what was done in the type for the people as a body, is done in the antitype for the people as individuals; and the blood of sin-offering ministered in the most holy place, avails for their sins, even as it did in the outer apartment, till it comes to an application in their individual cases. The twofold work of the high priest in the earthly sanctuary seems fitly to typify this twofold work of our High Priest above. For the sins of the whole church for six thousand years may be disposed of as individual cases, and all the while that this great work is being accomplished, the blood of Jesus may avail for us in the presence of God.STTHD 292.2

    There seems, therefore, to be no difficulty involved in the idea that the offering of the High Priest in the holiest, can avail for sins committed while he is there before God. Some additional considerations go to sustain this idea. In the type, so far as we know, during the whole work of the year, the transgression preceded the offering. The sin was committed before the victim was brought. And no offering was brought to the priest for sins that would be committed in the future. This was at least as much so in the holy place as in the most holy.STTHD 293.1

    But how was it with our Lord? He shed his blood before entering the tabernacle in Heaven at all. And that blood, once shed, avails for sins committed after his death just as effectually as for those which, as in the type, were committed before his offering was made. And, as we have seen, this blood is ministered by our Lord in both apartments of the heavenly sanctuary. Now, if its offering in the most holy place cannot avail for any sins only those committed before it began to be offered there, by parity of reasoning it would follow that it could not avail in the holy place, or first apartment, for any sins only those which had been committed before it began to be offered there. And then we should have no forgiveness anywhere in all this spiritual, life-giving dispensation. But this would be proving too much; and any position which involves such an issue, or any line of argument which leads to such a result, must be abandoned.STTHD 293.2

    And finally, the testimony of the New Testament is conclusive on the point that the blood of Jesus avails for us in both the holy places of the heavenly tabernacle: Hebrews 10:19: “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus.” The word here rendered holiest is plural in the original, signifying holy places; and so Macknight renders it: “Well, then, brethren, having boldness in the entrance of the holy places by the blood of Jesus.”STTHD 294.1

    These words are a complete refutation of the doctrine that probation closes with our Lord’s entrance within the second vail. We enter into the most holy as well as into the holy by his blood; and we do it with boldness, because of the promise of the forgiveness of our sins. Thank God that we can still thus enter by the blood of Jesus.STTHD 294.2

    We therefore conclude that probation does not end when the work in the most holy place commences, but that it ends with each individual, as the work shall reach his or her individual case. The natural order would seem to be that this work, which we have shown to be the investigative Judgment, would begin with the earliest generations of men, that is, with those who are now in their graves (but their record lives on high), and so come down through all successive generations till it reaches the living, the decision of whose cases would be the very closing act of this last work. And we may perhaps consider our experience since the cleansing of the sanctuary commenced, a demonstration of this point.STTHD 295.1

    But at length the cases of all the generations of the dead will have been examined, and it will come to the living; and then, as each individual case is taken up and passed upon, his probation will end and his destiny be fixed. This is the scene our Lord brings to view when just before his coming he says that this fearful fiat shall go forth: “He that is unjust, let him be unjust still; and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still; and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still; and he that is holy, let him be holy still.”STTHD 295.2

    And how near are we to this solemn moment? We know not. For thirty-three years already has this closing sanctuary work been in progress. It cannot much longer continue. Its whole duration is to be spanned by one generation. This much we know, as taught by the type, that if we would have Christ’s blood avail for us to atone for our sins when our cases shall come up in that grand review, the record must show that we have sincerely repented of all our sins, and sought pardon for them through our Advocate on high. In the type the people were required on the day of atonement to afflict their souls. Are we thus faithfully crucifying ourselves to this world, that we may live in the world to come? How solemn is this time! Let us endeavor to feel the force of the following impressive lines of the poet, and give them in our memory the place they so well deserve:—STTHD 296.1

    “There is a time, we know not when, A point, we know not where, That marks the destiny of men, To glory or despair.STTHD 296.2

    “There is a line, by us unseen, That crosses every path, The hidden boundary between God’s patience and his wrath.STTHD 297.1

    “To pass that limit is to die, To die as if by stealth; It does not quench the beaming eye, Or fade the glow of health.STTHD 297.2

    “The conscience may be still at ease, The spirit light and gay; That which is pleasing, still may please, And care be thrust away.STTHD 297.3

    “But on that forehead God has set Indelibly a mark Unseen by man; for man, as yet, Is blind, and in the dark.STTHD 297.4

    “And yet the doomed man’s path below Like Eden may have bloomed; He did not, does not, will not, know Or feel that he is doomed.STTHD 297.5

    “Oh! where is this mysterious bourn By which each path is crossed, Beyond which God himself hath sworn That he who goes — is lost?STTHD 297.6

    “How far may we go on in sin? How long will God forbear? Where does hope end — and where begin The confines of despair?STTHD 297.7

    “An answer from the skies is sent: Ye that from God depart, While it is called to-day, repent, And harden not your heart.”STTHD 297.8

    Larger font
    Smaller font