How to Glorify God



[Sermon at Chicago, ILL., April 8, 1889.]

Mrs. E. G. White

Through all our trials we should think of the plan of salvation, we should educate the soul to exercise faith in Christ and to render praise to God. Christ suffered reproach. He was reviled and rejected of men. They even said that he had a devil, but he did not shrink from the cross of suffering, and we should not murmur at the self-sacrificing part of religion. All Heaven is interested in the trying of our souls, the whole universe is interested to see how we shall bear the cross and endure the shame. You are to work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God that worketh in you, both to will and to do of his good pleasure. God does not work with man without his co-operation. Divine power will combine with human effort, and enable you to successfully meet the enemy of your souls. In Christ you must meet every difficulty; and if others do not sympathize with your ideas, you must not wound them by enmity, but press close to the bleeding side of your Saviour.

If you have doubts, you should not gratify the evil one by telling others concerning them. If you trust in Christ, as surely as he died on Calvary’s cross, you will obtain the victory. It was living faith that caused the woman who had suffered under disease for years to touch the hem of Christ’s garment. This is the faith that we must have, and then we shall not speak of our trials and conflicts; for through them all, we shall have joy unspeakable and full of glory. Jesus has said, “He that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” We should unfurl the banner of the Prince of Peace, and in perplexity and sorrow we must not lose sight of Him who is mighty to save.

Jesus came to this earth, marred and seared by the curse, for the purpose of bringing moral power to men. He fought the battle in man’s behalf in the wilderness of temptation, and it was the same battle that everyone of us must fight till the close of time. Christ was not overcome in this conflict. He who worked miracles for others, worked none for himself. He had clothed his divinity with humanity, and he had come to bring divine power to man. He met the enemy at every step with “It is written.” He used the word of God to thwart the temptations of the evil one. This is where our safety lies. We should study the word of God, and be so filled with it, that we can meet the enemy of our souls with “It is written,” as did our example. Then we could hope for the grace that God has promised, to enable us to be overcomers. You should be full of hope in the work of the Lord. A discouraged man cannot glorify God. Whatever you do, you should not lose your hope and faith. When you become discouraged it is an evidence that you have allowed the enemy to come in between your soul and God. You must lay hold of the hope set before you, and you will come off victorious, and be ready to sing the praises of God.

When Christ came to this world, he found that Satan had everything as he wanted it. The adversary of God and man thought that he was indeed the prince of the earth, but Jesus laid hold of the world to take it out of the power of Satan. He came to redeem it from the curse of sin and the penalty of transgression, that the transgressor might be forgiven. He planted the cross between earth and heaven, and between divinity and humanity; and as the Father beheld the cross, he was satisfied. He said, “It is enough, the offering is complete.” God and man may be reconciled. Those who have lived in rebellion against God, may become reconciled, if as they see the cross, they become repentant, and accept the great propitiation that Christ has made for their sins. In the cross they see that “mercy and truth have met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.”

We do not appreciate the love of God as we should. When God gave his Son to die for the sins of men, he gave all Heaven in that one gift. There was nothing that God could withhold from humanity after giving up his beloved Son; for Christ himself had assumed humanity. He was made a child that he might understand the temptations of childhood, and know its weaknesses and be able to help the children to be overcomers. He passed from youth to manhood, and carried our griefs and bore our sorrows. He was tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin. When we come to him in sincerity pleading for pardon, he forgives. We need not wait to make ourselves acceptable; for we can never. We cannot do works that will commend us to God when we have sinned. We must come to the cross, and lay our burden of sin upon Jesus Christ, and believe that we are pardoned for Christ’s sake who died for us. When we acknowledge our sin, and seek pardon through Christ, the law is exalted. It is the moral standard of God, and tells us what sin is. Says John, “Sin is the transgression of the law.” Those who have sinned must hang their helpless souls on Christ.

You should place your will (daily choices) on the side of God’s will (daily choices). You cannot be overcome of the enemy unless you press positive resistance against God’s will. We can be more than conquerors through faith in him who has loved us and given himself for us. When you come to God, you must come with confidence. When Satan presses upon your soul his temptations to doubt that God will have mercy in your case, you should press back his suggestions with the promises of God. Our heavenly Father has expressed his love for us individually in the cross of Calvary. The Father loves us, he is full of compassion and tender mercy.

Jesus came to this earth to represent the character of the Father to the world. He said, “He that hath seen me, hath seen the Father.” Satan had misrepresented the character of God, and placed him in a false light. But Jesus came to reveal the Father’s love and compassion toward the fallen children of men. When those who profess to be the servants of God draw down their countenances in gloom, and are ever complaining, they misrepresent their heavenly Father. They are confirming the impression that Satan has made concerning his character. They say to the world, “The service of God is a hard service. It is bondage to keep the law of God.” This is all false. What is it that puts the shackles on men’s wrists? Is it obedience to law? No, indeed. Those who keep the laws walk at liberty. It is the transgressor that is in bondage. The curse of the law is not upon those who are striving to fulfill God’s holy precepts through faith in the Redeemer. They are covered with his righteousness. They are at peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.

How wrong it is for those who profess to be engaged in the service of God, to dishonor God by misrepresenting his service. The Lord has proclaimed himself as “The Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression, and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty.” Will we believe this declaration of his character? He says again, “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God; for he will abundantly pardon.”

How long we have resisted the pleading of the Spirit of God! How long he has borne with us! We would not bear such resistance as we have made against him. But he says, “My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways.” “As the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.” It is because the Lord is not like one of us that he can forgive sins when we come to him with repentance. Satan tries to discourage every soul that seeks to come to God. He will tell you that you are a sinner, unworthy of the love of God. And you can tell him that you know it, but that you have repented of your transgressions and by faith you depend upon the merits of the blood of Christ, and the mercy of God is for you. Reach over the doubts that he suggests to your mind, and grasp the promise of God. Tell your enemy that “the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”

The followers of Jesus should be living stones in the temple of God, so that they may emit light to those around them. They should work with a cheerful heart to show forth the praises of Him who has called them out of darkness into his marvelous light. They should seek to unfold to men the glories of the law of liberty. If they go forth to labor for God with a gloomy countenance, and despondent heart, they will not accomplish anything that will glorify their Redeemer; for their attitude of doubt will destroy the effect of their words. The conflict is coming on the law of God in the world. Satan carries on the same warfare from age to age against the precepts of Jehovah. The sinner hates the law because it points out his shortcoming, and he tramples upon it in derision.

Those who profess to love God should search the Scriptures diligently, for they cannot afford to be found transgressors of the law. The time is coming when no one will be able to render an excuse to God for disobedience to his law. There are those who say now that they cannot keep the commandments of God. They excuse themselves from obedience to the fourth commandment because of business, or their family, or social relations. But these excuses will not be found to avail in the day of God. They will not stand the test of the judgment.

Christ left the royal throne, he stepped down from his high command in the heavenly courts, and for our sakes became poor, that we through his poverty, might be made rich; and what answer can be framed before him for trampling on the holy law of God? When God gave his Son, he made provision in him for every emergency connected with man’s salvation; and in the day of reward and meeting out the penalty for transgression, every mouth will be stopped, and all the world will become guilty before God. But of those who have obeyed the precepts of heaven, Jesus says, “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.” Do you want to enter into the city of God? Christ has stated the condition upon which you may enter. It may seem to you now that commandment-keepers are in the minority; but it will not seem so when the gates of the heavenly city swing back on their glittering hinges. God is on the side of those who obey him. God is a majority. Christ is on their side, the angels of heaven are on their side, and all the good are on their side. The doers of the law of God are in the majority. They have access to the power that the world cannot give or take away. Let us not exalt Satan by dwelling upon his power. Let us talk of the power of God. Let us think of the King in his beauty. Let us behold Christ, and by beholding, become changed into his divine image. ST September 30, 1889, par. 12
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