Letter 55, 1886

An Appeal to Live the Truth and Share It

by Mrs. E.G. White

There are many doctrines current in our world.There is many a religion current that numbers its thousands and tens of thousands, but there is but one that bears the superscription and the stamp of God.There is a religion of man and a religion of God.We must have our souls riveted to the eternal Rock.Everything in God’s world, both men and doctrines and nature itself, is fulfilling God’s sure word of prophecy and accomplishing His grand and clos­ing work in this world’s history.

We are to be ready and waiting for the orders of God.Nations will be stirred to their very center.Support will be withdrawn from those who proclaim God’s only standard of righteousness, the only sure test of character.And all who will not bow to the decrees of the national councils and obey the national laws to exalt the sabbath instituted by the man of sin to the disregard of God’s holy day, will feel, not the oppressive power of popery alone, but of the Protestant world, the image of the beast.

Satan will work his miracles to deceive; he will set up his power as supreme.The church may appear as about to fall, but it does not fall.It remains, while the sinners in Zion will be sifted out—the chaff separated from the precious wheat.This is a terrible ordeal, but nevertheless it must take place. None but those who have been overcoming by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony will be found with the loyal and true, without spot or stain of sin, without guile in their mouths.We must be divested of our self-righteousness and arrayed in the righteousness of Christ.

The remnant that purify their souls by obeying the truth gather strength from the trying process, exhibiting the beauty of holiness amid the surrounding apostasy.All these, He says, “I have graven upon the palms of my hands” [Isa. 49:16].They are held in everlasting, imperishable remem­brance.We want faith now, living faith.We want to have a living testimony that shall cut to the heart of the sinner.There is too much sermonizing and too little ministering.We want the holy unction.We need the spirit and fervor of the truth.Many of the ministers are half paralyzed by their own defects of character.They need the converting power of God.

That which God required of Adam before his fall was perfect obedience to His law.God requires now what He required of Adam, perfect obedience, right­eousness without a flaw, without shortcoming in His sight.God help us to render to Him all His law requires.We cannot do this without that faith that brings Christ’s righteousness into daily practice.

Dear brethren, the Lord is coming.Lift up your thoughts and heads and rejoice.Oh, we would think that those who hear the joyful news, who claim to love Jesus, would be filled with joy unutterable and full of glory.This is the good, the joyful news which should electrify every soul, which should be repeated in our homes, and told to those whom we meet on the street.What more joyful news can be communicated! Caviling and contention with believers or unbelievers is not the work God has given us to do.

If Christ is my Saviour, my sacrifice, my atonement, then I shall never perish.Believing on Him, I have life forevermore.Oh, that all who believe the truth would believe in Jesus as their own Saviour.I do not mean that cheap faith unsupported by works, but that earnest, living, constant, abiding faith, that eats the flesh and drinks the blood of the Son of God. I want not only to be pardoned for the transgression of God’s holy law, but I want to be lifted into the sunshine of God’s countenance.Not simply to be admitted to heaven, but to have an abundant entrance.

Are we so insensible as a peculiar people, a holy nation, to the inexpressible love that God has manifested for us? Salvation is not to be baptized, not to have our names upon the church books, not to preach the truth.But it is a living union with Jesus Christ, to be renewed in heart, doing the works of Christ in faith and labor of love, in patience, meekness, and hope.Every soul united to Christ will be a living missionary to all around him. He will labor for those near and those afar off. He will have no sectional feeling, no interest merely to build up one branch of the work over which he presides and there let his zeal end. All will work with interest to make every branch strong.There will be no self-love, no selfish interest.The cause is one, the truth a great whole.

Well may the question be asked with earnest, anxious heart, “Is envy cherished, is jealousy permitted to find a place in my heart?” If so, Christ is not there.“Do I love the law of God, is the love of Jesus Christ in my heart?” If we love one another as Christ has loved us, then we are getting ready for the blessed heaven of peace and rest.There is no struggling there to be first, to have the supremacy; all will love their neighbor as themselves.Oh, that God would open the understand­ing and speak to the hearts of our churches by arousing the individual members.

The Lord appoints and sends forth ministers not only to preach, for this is a small part of His work, but to minister, to educate the people not to be fighters but to be examples of piety. There are workers in every department appointed to do their work.When Jesus ascended on high He gave some apostles, and some prophets, and some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers.Some have entered the work with a human commission rather than the divine. They have educated themselves as debators, and the churches under their care show the character of their work. They were not ready, they were not fitted for the work.Their hearts are not right with God.In short, they have a theory but not true conversion and sanctification through the truth.The great issue so near at hand will weed out those whom God has not appointed, and He will have a pure, true, sanctified ministry prepared for the latter rain.

Our prayer should ascend to the throne of grace with fervor for the Lord of the harvest to send forth laborers into His vineyard.My heart aches as I look around upon the mission fields and see so feeble efforts to get the truth be­fore the people.No censure can be attached to our leading men.I believe, brethren, you are one with me in heart, in sentiment, in regard to our great need, and in the earnest desire and earnest efforts to meet the mind of the Spirit of God in these things.

Those who are at ease in Zion need to be aroused. Great is their accountability who bear the truth and yet feel no weight or burden for souls.Oh, for men and women professing the truth to arouse, to take on the yoke of Christ, to lift His burdens.There are wanted those who will not have merely a nominal interest but a Christlike interest, unselfish—an intense ardor that will not flag under diffi­culties or cool because iniquity abounds.

I want to speak to the ears of our people in America in every church.Awake from the dead, and Christ will give you life.Souls are perishing for the light of truth as it is in Jesus.We are standing upon the very borders of the eternal world.Fair-weather Christians will not be wanted for this work.The sentimental and tasteful religion is not needed for this time. There must be intensity brought into our faith and in the proclamation of truth.I tell you, a new life is proceeding from satanic agencies to work with a power we have not hitherto realized.And shall not a new power from above take possession of God’s people? The truth, sanctifying in its influence, must be urged upon the people.There must be earnest supplications of­fered to God, agonizing prayer to Him, that our hopes as a people may not be founded on supposi­tions, but on eternal realities.We must know for ourselves, by the evidence of God’s Word, whether we are in the faith, going to heaven or not.The moral standard of character is God’s law.Do we meet its requirements?Are the Lord’s people bringing their property, their time, their talents, and all their influence into the work for this time? Let us arouse.“If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God” [Col.  3:1].

Letter 55, 1886.(Written from Basel, Switzerland, to G.I. Butler and S.N. Haskell, December 8, 1886.)

White Estate, Washington, D.C., July 7, 1983. Entire Manuscript.

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