For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. 1 Corinthians 2:2.
The burden of our message should be the mission and life of Jesus Christ. Let there be a dwelling upon the humiliation, self-denial, meekness, and lowliness of Christ, that proud and selfish hearts may see the difference between themselves and the Pattern, and may be humbled. . . .
Describe, if human language can, the humiliation of the Son of God, and think not that you have reached the climax when you see Him exchanging the throne of light and glory which He had with the Father for humanity. He came forth from heaven to earth, and while on earth, He bore the curse of God as surety for the fallen race. He was not obliged to do this. He chose to bear the wrath of God, which man had incurred…. He chose to endure the cruel mockings, the deridings, the scourging, and the crucifixion. . . . “He . . . became obedient unto death,” but the manner of His death was an astonishment to the universe, for it was even the death of the cross.
Christ was not insensible to ignominy and disgrace. He felt it all most bitterly. He felt it as much more deeply and acutely than we can feel suffering, as His nature was more exalted and pure and holy than that of the sinful race for whom He suffered. He was the Majesty of heaven, He was equal with the Father, He was the Commander of the hosts of angels, yet He died for man the death that was, above all others, clothed with ignominy and reproach. O that the haughty hearts of men might realize this! O that they might enter into the meaning of redemption and seek to learn the meekness and lowliness of Jesus! …
The gifts of Him who has all power in heaven and in earth are in store for the children of God. Gifts so precious that they come to us through the costly sacrifice of the Redeemer’s blood, gifts that will satisfy the deepest craving of the heart, gifts lasting as eternity, will be received and enjoyed by all who will come to God as little children.
That I May Know Him p. 339
—– I have been having bible studies with a client that has come down with cancer. Not only has she accepted the Sabbath but wants to hear more about the Health message. Please keep her in your prayers. BJ
—– Please pray for Adrian. He is diabetic and has a lot of other medical problems. He has an upper respiratory cold and needs our prayers. Fran
One day, when Esther was about twelve or thirteen, she played a joke on her sister that gave Eileen a terrible fright. All had seemed normal when she had driven Esther and Ronnie Jay to school on that particular day, but it didn’t stay that way. After dropping them off at the door, Eileen decided to park the car so she could visit the restroom before about her day. Esther, who sat by the window noticed this and asked if she could be excused. The teacher, not expecting anything, nodded his permission.
Quietly, Esther tiptoed into the restroom. She could hear her sister humming softly to herself in one of the stalls. Smiling, Esther entered the far stall and lifted herself up onto the metal crossbeams at the top of the stalls. Carefully, she inched her way from stall to stall until she was directly over her sister.
Suddenly, Esther jumped down in front of the startled Eileen. Then she quickly let herself out of the stall’s door, ran from the restroom but slowed to a walk when she reached the hallway. Then she entered her classroom and sat down as if nothing had happened.
As soon as Eileen recovered from her fright, her fear became anger. Moments later, she burst into the classroom, shouting threats at her little sister. Seeing the shocked looks upon the teacher and students’ faces, Eileen stopped shouting and quietly closed the door. After she was gone, the teacher asked Esther what caused her sister to burst angrily into the room. When Esther confessed what she had done, the whole room erupted with laughter.
Even though this trick on her sister has become one of those funny family stories we love to tell when we all get together, there are often wrongs that are no laughing matter committed by those we should be able to trust. How many times our feelings are hurt by those we love the most. How often church members become disillusioned and devastated by our words or actions and leave never to return because we will not humble ourselves enough to apologize for what we have done.
Our Dear Saviour reminds us, “whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.” Matt 23:12 In fact making sure that all is right between ourselves and our brethren is so important that He tells us, “if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.” Matt 5:23, 24 He gives us detailed steps to take in order to be reconciled. He counsels, “if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.” Matt 18:15-17
Our Saviour was kind and tenderhearted, full of love and pity for the erring. He did not come to this world to force His will on anyone. He does not manipulate us. He does not make us love Him. Instead, He gives us a choice. Even so, He pleads with us, “therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live.” Deut 30:19 “As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die?” Eze 33:11 He wins us to Himself through His loving kindness and tender mercies. (Jer 31:3) He draws us with cords of love. (Hosea 11:4) “Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him. For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.” Ps 103:13,14 He gives us an example of how we should treat those who disagree with us or even despitefully use us. Even as He was nailed to the cross, He prayed, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” Luke 23:34
Our Loving Redeemer is to be our example. Paul explains how each should live in harmony. “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.” Phil 2:3,4 “For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.” Rom 12:3-5 “Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” James 5:16
“Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it. For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.” 1 Peter 3:8-12