Daily Devotional: Betrayed by Friends and Relatives

A man’s foes shall be they of his own household. Matt. 11:36.
When the law of God is made void, and the church is sifted by the fiery trials that are to try all that live upon the earth, a great proportion of those who are supposed to be genuine will give heed to seducing spirits, and will turn traitors and betray sacred trusts. They will prove our very worst persecutors. “Of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them;” and many will give heed to seducing spirits.

Those who apostatize in time of trial will bear false witness and betray their brethren, to secure their own safety. They will tell where their brethren are concealed, putting the wolves on their track. Christ has warned us of this, that we may not be surprised at the cruel, unnatural course pursued by friends and relatives.

We shall find that we must let loose of all hands except the hand of Jesus Christ. Friends will prove treacherous, and will betray us. Relatives, deceived by the enemy, will think they do God service in opposing us and putting forth the utmost efforts to bring us into hard places, hoping we will deny our faith. But we may trust our hand in the hand of Christ amid darkness and peril.

The followers of Christ must expect to encounter sneers. They will be reviled; their words and their faith will be misrepresented. Coldness and contempt may be harder to endure than martyrdom. . . .

Parents will turn harshly against their children who accept unpopular truth. Those who conscientiously serve God will be accused of rebellion. Property that was willed to children or other relatives who believe the present truth will be given into other hands. Guardians will rob orphans and widows of their just dues. Those who depart from evil will make themselves a prey through laws enacted to compel the conscience. Men will take to themselves property to which they have no right. The words of the apostle will be verified in the near future: “All that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.”

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Thoughts of the day: Ellen G. White

How great will be the joy when the redeemed of the Lord shall all meet,–gathered into the mansions prepared for them! O, what rejoicing for all who have been impartial, unselfish laborers together with God in carrying forward His work in the earth! Heaven, p. 55.

Those who minister to others will be ministered unto by the Chief Shepherd. They themselves will drink of the living water, and will be satisfied. They will not be longing for exciting amusements, or for some change in their lives. The great topic of interest will be, how to save the souls that are ready to perish. Desire of Ages, p. 641

Thoughts of the day: Ellen G. White

[Jesus] declares, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” If by any effort of our own we could advance one step toward the ladder, the words of Christ would not be true. But when we accept Christ, good works will appear as fruitful evidence that we are in the way of life, that Christ is our way, and that we are treading the true path that leads to heaven. Heaven p. 11.

To those who believe, Christ is the sure foundation. These are they who fall upon the Rock and are broken. Submission to Christ and faith in Him are here represented. To fall upon the Rock and be broken is to give up our self-righteousness and to go to Christ with the humility of a child, repenting of our transgressions, and believing in His forgiving love. And so also it is by faith and obedience that we build on Christ as our foundation. Desire of Ages, p. 599

Daily Devotional: Remember Your Creator in Your Youth

Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them. Eccl. 12:1

I wish I could portray the beauty of the Christian life. Beginning in the morning of life, controlled by the laws of nature and of God, the Christian moves steadily onward and upward, daily drawing nearer his heavenly home, where await for him a crown of life, and a new name, “which no man knoweth saving him that receiveth it.” Constantly he grows in happiness, in holiness, in usefulness. The progress of each year exceeds that of the past year.

God has given the youth a ladder to climb, a ladder that reaches from earth to heaven. Above this ladder is God, and on every round fall the bright beams of his glory. He is watching those who are climbing, ready, when the grasp relaxes and the steps falter, to send help. Yes, tell it in words full of cheer, that no one who perseveringly climbs the ladder will fail of gaining an entrance into the heavenly city.

Angels of God, that ascend and descend the ladder that Jacob saw in vision, will help every soul who will to climb even to the highest heaven. They are guarding the people of God and watching how every step is taken. Those who climb the shining way will be rewarded; they will enter into the joy of their Lord.

Early piety ensures to its possessor the full enjoyment of all that makes life happy. . . . Those who wait until the span of life is almost ended before they seek God, lose a life of pure, elevated happiness–happiness that never comes in pursuit of the pleasures that this life affords. Those who have been long acquainted with God, who from their youth have drawn their happiness from the pure fountain of heaven, are prepared to enter the family of God.

Thoughts of the day: Ellen G. White

Christ gave Himself to a shameful, agonizing death, showing His great travail of soul to save the perishing. Oh, Christ is able, Christ is willing, Christ is longing, to save all who will come unto Him! Heaven, p. 11.

God does not propose to remove every objection which the carnal heart may bring against His truth. To those who refuse the precious rays of light which would illuminate the darkness, the mysteries of God’s word remain such forever. From them the truth is hidden. They walk blindly, and know not the ruin before them. Desire of Ages, p. 588

Daily Devotional:

The humble shall see this, and be glad: and your heart shall live that seek God. Ps. 69:32.
It is your privilege to be glad in the Lord, and to rejoice in the knowledge of His sustaining grace. Let His love take possession of mind and heart. Guard against becoming overwearied, careworn, depressed. Bear an uplifting testimony. Turn your eyes away from that which is dark and discouraging, and behold Jesus, our great Leader, under whose watchful supervision the cause of present truth, to which we are giving our lives and our all, is destined to triumph gloriously. . . .

Oh, let it be seen . . . that Jesus is abiding in the heart, sustaining, strengthening, comforting. It is your privilege to be endowed, from day to day, with a rich measure of His Holy Spirit, and to have broadened views of the importance and scope of the message we are proclaiming to the world. The Lord is willing to reveal to you wondrous things out of His law. Wait before Him with humility of heart. Pray most earnestly for an understanding of the times in which we live, for a fuller conception of His purpose, and for increased efficiency in soul saving. . . .

It will be well for us to consider what is soon to come upon the earth. This is no time for trifling or self-seeking. If the times in which we are living fail to impress our minds seriously, what can reach us? . . .

Men of clear understanding are needed now. God calls upon those who are willing to be controlled by the Holy Spirit to lead out in a work of thorough reformation. I see a crisis before us, and the Lord calls for His laborers to come into line. Every soul should now stand in a position of deeper, truer consecration to God than during the years that have passed. . . .

I have been deeply impressed by scenes that have recently passed before me in the night season. There seemed to be a great movement–a work of revival–going forward in many places. Our people were moving into line, responding to God’s call. . . . Shall we not heed His voice? Shall we not trim our lamps, and act like men who look for their Lord to come? The time is one that calls for light bearing, for action.

Daily Devotioanl: The Results of False Visions

 

Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Matt. 7:19, 20.
Several now living [1890] are skeptics, have no belief in the gifts of the church, no faith in the truth, no religion at all. Such, I have been shown, is the sure result of spurious visions. . . .

Satan is . . . constantly pressing in the spurious–to lead away from the truth.

The very last deception of Satan will be to make of none effect the testimony of the Spirit of God. “Where there is no vision, the people perish” (Prov. 29:18). Satan will work ingeniously, in different ways and through different agencies, to unsettle the confidence of God’s remnant people in the true testimony. He will bring in spurious visions to mislead, and will mingle the false with the true, and so disgust people that they will regard everything that bears the name of visions as a species of fanaticism; but honest souls, by contrasting false and true, will be enabled to distinguish between them. . . .

There is nothing more detrimental to the soul’s interest, its purity, its true and holy conceptions of God, and of sacred and eternal things, than constantly giving heed to and exalting that which is not from God. It poisons the heart, and degrades the understanding. Pure truth can be traced to its divine Source, by its elevating, refining, sanctifying influence upon the character of the receiver. The Author of all truth prayed to His Father, “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on 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” (John 17:20, 21).

Things will be constantly arising to cause disunion, to draw away from the truth. This questioning, criticizing, denouncing, passing judgment on others, is not an evidence of the grace of Christ in the heart. It does not produce unity. Such work has been carried on in the past by persons claiming to have wonderful light, when they were deep in sin.

Thoughts of the day: Ellen G. White

There are not many ways to heaven. Each one may not choose his own way. Christ says, “I am the way: . . . no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me.” Heaven, p. 10.

Today the servant of Christ, the reprover of sin, meets with scorn and rebuffs. Bible truth, the religion of Christ, struggles against a strong current of moral impurity. Prejudice is even stronger in the hearts of men now than in Christ’s day. Christ did not fulfill men’s expectations; His life was a rebuke to their sins, and they rejected Him. So now the truth of God‘s word does not harmonize with men’s practices and their natural inclination, and thousands reject its light. Desire of Ages, p. 587

Daily Devotional: Watch Out for the Dividers!

It is impossible but that offences will come: but woe unto him, through whom they come! Luke 17:1.
God is bringing out a people and preparing them to stand as one, united, to speak the same things, and carry out the prayer of Christ for his disciples. . . . “That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us. . . .”

There are little companies continually arising who believe that God is only with the very few, the very scattered, and their influence is to tear down and scatter that which God’s servants build up. . . . The people who are putting forth every effort in accordance with God’s word to be one, who are established in the message of the third angel, they look upon with suspicion, for the reason that they are extending their labor, and are gathering souls into the truth. They look upon them as being worldly, because they have influence in the world. . . .

One man arises, claiming to be led of God, who advocates the heresy of the non-resurrection of the wicked. . . . Another cherishes erroneous views in regard to the future age. . . . They all want full religious liberty, and each one goes independent of the others, and yet claims that God is especially at work among them. . . . These people are not sane; they are carried away with a false excitement, and we know that they do not have the truth. . . . Would to God they would be reformed or give up the Sabbath. They would not then stand in the way of unbelievers. . . .

God is angry with those who pursue a course to make the world hate them. If a Christian is hated because of his good works, and for following Christ, he will have a reward. But if he is hated because he does not take a course to be loved, hated because of his uncultivated manners, and because he makes the truth a matter of quarrel with his neighbors, and because he has taken a course to make the Sabbath as annoying as possible to them, he is a stumbling-block to sinners, a reproach to the sacred truth, and unless he repents it were better for him that a millstone were hung about his neck, and he cast into the sea.

Thought of the day: Desire of Ages By Ellen G. White

Many there are who bring their precious gifts for the dead. As they stand about the cold, silent form, words of love are freely spoken. Tenderness, appreciation, devotion, all are lavished upon one who sees not nor hears. Had these words been spoken when the weary spirit needed them so much, when the ear could hear and the heart could feel, how precious would have been their fragrance! Desire of Ages, p. 560