Friday, August 28, 2015

netASI - RIP Will Pergerson

Raul Diaz

Sabbath School Lesson 9 | "Peter and the Gentiles" | Pastor Paul Penno

Lesson 9: Peter and the Gentiles

Sabbath School Today
With the 1888 Message Dynamic
Biblical Missionaries
Lesson 9: Peter and the Gentiles

This "Sabbath School Today" will focus on the reception of Christ, through the Holy Spirit, that will fit any person who is willing to receive the promise of the Father, which is the mystery of godliness, or "Christ in you, the hope of glory." It is seldom preached, because since 1888 "our works and our efforts" have taken priority over the gift of the Holy Spirit.
The memory verse addresses individual repentance, baptism, and the gift of the Holy Spirit. Quoting a section from Sunday's lesson we see that it is teaching witnessing without first being filled with the Holy Spirit: "Jesus' last words before His ascension were of a missionary nature: 'Ye shall be witnesses unto Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth' (Acts 1:8). Here, again, we see the mandate to spread the gospel into all the world."
All the words of Jesus must be taken as He spoke them: Acts 1:8 begins, "But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Spirit is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto Me ... ." Quoting only a part of a verse changes the meaning of the entire thought. Jesus is saying to the disciples that after receiving the Holy Spirit they will be witnesses; while that part is not mentioned, we are urged to go out and witness for Jesus. This is an emphasis on our works for salvation and not salvation by faith.
This order of things is very important! Note that Jesus Himself places the order of things in this manner: (1) The reception of power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you (which is the promise of the Father), and only then (2) would they be able to be witnesses to the ends of the earth.
Here it is plain that we are not to go out and do witnessing or launch any endeavor for missions asking God to bless until after we have received power from the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is God's fitting the individual for witnessing, missions, and translation at the Second Coming.
Ellet J. Waggoner put it this way: "'For all the promises of God in Him are yea, and in Him Amen, unto the glory of God by us' (2 Cor. 1:20). It is by these 'exceeding great and precious promises' that we are 'made partakers of the Divine nature.' [2 Peter 1:4]. The glories of the world to come will be but the revealing of that which we have now in the personal presence within us of the Lord Jesus Christ. The only hope of glory is Christ in us." [1]
Waggoner goes further and defines the "personal presence" of Christ: "By the Spirit, His own personal presence, He can come to every man on earth and fill the heavens as well ... ." [2] We see that receiving the Holy Spirit is the mystery of God, "Christ in you, the hope of glory" (Col 1:26, 27). This alone prepares us for witnessing.
While this lesson looks at Cornelius, the Council of Jerusalem, Peter and his vision, Pentecost and gentiles, it leaves aside the only requirement for the power to witness and that is the reception of the Holy Spirit--the personal presence of Jesus. Without this presence there is no amount of witnessing or missionary work that will be acceptable to God. (See Matt. 25:41).
A. T. Jones writes: "Before He left them, Jesus said to His disciples that they should be witnesses unto Him 'both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth' [Acts 1:8].
"And this was spoken to His disciples for all time; He intended that, in each generation, His disciples should bear witness unto Him, even unto the uttermost part of the earth.
"His disciples of that time did this in their generation: their faith was spoken, and spoken of, 'throughout the whole world;' the gospel which they preached 'was preached to every creature under heaven' (Col. 1:23).
"The reason of this was that they had the power to do it. Jesus said to them, 'Ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Spirit is come upon you; and ye shall be witnesses unto Me ... unto the uttermost part of the earth.'
"The Holy Spirit did come upon them; they did receive power. And having power to be witnesses unto the uttermost part of the earth, it was easy so to witness.
"And that is true yet. Any church that has the power to witness unto Christ to the uttermost part of the earth can witness unto the uttermost part of the earth. It will not be difficult to do what she has the power to do.
"The only reason that the church in any age has not witnesses in that age to the uttermost part of the earth, is simply because she did not have the power to do it. That is what she existed for; but she could not do it, because she did not have the power. And she did not have the power because she would not have the Holy Spirit come upon her. [Ellen G. White wrote: "I can never forget the experience which we had in Minneapolis (at the 1888 General Conference Session), or the things which were then revealed to me in regard to the spirit that controlled men, ... They were moved at the meeting by another spirit, and they knew not that God had sent these young men, Elders Jones and Waggoner, to bear a special message to them, which they treated with ridicule and contempt, ... I know that at that time the Spirit of God was insulted. [3] ]
"Now, in this day and age, the church must witness unto Christ unto the uttermost part of the earth. That is solely what she exists for. But she can not do it without the power. Men may talk and plan and work till doomsday; but the thing can never be done without the power to do it. And the power to do it lies solely in having the Holy Spirit come upon the disciples.
"And when the Holy Spirit does come upon us, making us witnesses, then He also Himself is a witness with us. ...
"The Holy Spirit witnesses with the believer who witnesses that Christ is risen from the dead, and is alive and at the right hand of God, to shed forth repentance, forgiveness, and power. ...
"We today are expected to witness to this same thing. We must witness that He is risen, and is alive today. We must witness that He is at the right hand of God, exalted to be a prince and a Saviour, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins. We can do it.
"We can do it because we know Him, the living Saviour, with whom we live. We can do it because He lives with us. We can do it because we know that He is in us, and we in Him; and this we know by the Holy Spirit, which is given us. We can do it because He has given us the power, in giving us the Holy Spirit." [4]
A simple illustration, taken from one of my Recovery Groups in the past, brings home this point. Addicts hear only what they want to hear, and to illustrate this we did this silly illustration in the group.
A group member was selected and asked to take the vacuum cleaner that was in the corner of the room, and to vacuum the dirt off the carpet. Everything was available to make this a simple and successful task. There was the vacuum cleaner, the electric cord (which was wrapped neatly on the handle), a person willing to do the work, and a floor that needed cleaning.
The group member was told to begin, but to leave the vacuum unplugged. They could if they wanted to make the sound of the vacuum cleaner with their voice--"rum-rum"!
The person began to "vacuum the floor," going back and forth, back and forth. Everyone could see the effort and work that was being expended to complete this simple task. The person vacuuming was very careful to go the "ends of the room" in their useless efforts to clean the floor--without being plugged into the source of power that makes vacuuming successful. Even though they knew it wouldn't work, they kept at it!
The same thing is being urged by this lesson: Go and do something important, but do it without the power. In both cases the efforts resulted in a lot of work and failure to complete the task.
--Daniel Peters
[1] Ellet J. Waggoner, "A Present Salvation," The Present Truth, May 18, 1893.
[2] Waggoner, The Glad Tidings, p. 46 (Glad Tidings ed.).
[3] Ellen G. White, Letter 24, 1892, to Uriah Smith; "The Message of 1888: An Appeal for Unity; The Need for the Indwelling Christ," The Ellen G. White 1888 Materials, p. 1043.
[4] A. T. Jones, The Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, Aug. 16, 1898 (some emphasis added).

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Cross-Cultural Missions

Sabbath School Today

With the 1888 Message Dynamic

Biblical Missionaries

Lesson 8: Jesus: Cross-Cultural Missions


"Faith is the expecting the word of God to do what it says,
and the depending upon that word to do what it says." 
--A. T. Jones [1]


Our lesson gives us several wonderful examples of "cross-cultural missions," and each example bears one of the most powerful concepts of the 1888 message--righteousness by faith. We could spend a little time on each example given in the lesson; however, the story of "The Roman Army Officer," or Centurion, will be our focus in this short essay.

In Luke 7:2-10 there is a delightful story of a Roman centurion who sent some Jewish elders on a mission to Jesus to request Him to come and heal his servant who was sick unto death. The elders displayed their arrogance, proudly recommending the Roman army officer because he loves the Jewish nation and has paid for a synagogue (church building) for them.

But their testimonials meant nothing to Jesus; here was a request for help, and His compassion responded. (Luke tells it because he loves to emphasize Jesus' love for Gentiles). Halfway there, Jesus is interrupted by the man's friends sent on another mission to tell Him, "Trouble not Thyself: for I am not worthy that Thou shouldst enter under my roof," even though he probably had a sumptuous house if he could afford to pay for a new synagogue! Then he added, "But say in a word, and my servant shall be healed." He believed there is power in God's word! And Jesus marveled that a Gentile should have such "faith," that is, confidence that God is all-powerful.

But as we read the story in its context, we begin to see that the Roman soldier's faith was more than that. He had begun to understand his sinfulness in the light of Christ's righteousness, for he said two things. (1) "I am not worthy that thou shouldest enter under my roof," and (2) "neither thought I myself worthy to come unto Thee."

The centurion's faith was not a mere mental trust, but a heart-appreciation. An unusual love had filled this Roman solider's heart, for he was concerned for his servant, and not for himself. The faith he had already had transformed him and delivered him from selfishness. And so this story does help us understand the essential ingredient of true miracle healing: faith is a heart-appreciation of the sacrifice of Christ. [2]

A. T. Jones, one of the 1888 "messengers," wrote in the Review and Herald about the centurion's faith in the word of God:

"We have seen that the power abiding in the word of God is sufficient, only upon the speaking of that word, to create worlds. It is likewise sufficient, now that it is spoken to men, to create anew, in Christ Jesus, every one who receives it.

"Now what was it that the centurion expected would heal His servant? It was 'the word only,' which Jesus would speak. And after the word was spoken, what did the centurion depend upon--to what did he look for the healing power? It was 'the word only.' He did not look for the Lord to do it in some ways apart from the word. No. He heard the word, 'So be it done unto thee.' He accepted that word as it is in truth the word of God and expected it, depended upon it, to accomplish that which it said. And it was so. And that word is the word of God today as certainly as in the day that it was originally spoken. It has lost none of its power, for that word 'liveth and abideth forever.'" [3]

Ellen G. White also wrote about the Roman centurion, using the story as an example of his faith in contrast to that of the "brethren" she was addressing:

"Brethren, we want to come right up as a man and obtain a living experience here in this meeting. You want light enough that you can carry it with you into eternity. That is what you want. We have not half faith enough. We are only just beginning to learn as little children. The child first takes a step, and falls; and then takes another step, and finally learns how to walk. Now, we want to learn how to exercise faith.

"When the centurion came to Christ, just look at his faith. Why, he did not claim all the knowledge of the Jews; but here this centurion came, and he says, O Lord, You need not go away down there to heal my servant; You just say it and it will be done. What kind of power did he think was in Christ? Just what was invested in him. Now, said he, You may just say the word. I say to my servant, go, and he goeth, and I say to him, do this, and he doeth. Well now, all You have to say is to command, and it will be done.

"What was his insight? That there were angels all around Christ; the word of Christ would go right to that sick chamber and heal that soul. The Jews saw how Christ said to him, 'I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.' Now there are those outside of us that are standing in greater favor to God than we are; and why? Because they live up to every jot of light that they have. And we have light pouring in on us, and for months [since the 1888 General Conference Session] we have been pleading that the people would come up and accept the light; and they do not know whether to do it or not. They do not seem to see that they can come and drink, that they can open their hearts and let the Saviour in.

"My soul is agonized at times over these things. But I cannot do anything, I cannot speak to the heart; but God alone can speak to the heart. I entreat of you, as an ambassador of Jesus Christ, to bruise Satan under your feet. I beseech of you to begin to labor for yourself, labor for souls that are in darkness and unbelief. I beseech of you to spend your efforts in order to bring them where they can come where the living waters flow--where the light of heaven may come upon them, that they can stand amid the people as a light, and not as a shadow of darkness." [4]

A. T. Jones also wrote: "Plainly, it must be to little purpose to urge upon a person the necessity of cultivating faith, while that person has no intelligent idea of what faith is. And it is sadly true that, though the Lord has made this perfectly plain in the Scriptures, there are many church-members who do not know what faith is. …

"Faith comes 'by the word of God.' To the Word, then, we must look for it. …

"'When Jesus heard [what the centurion said], he marveled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.'

"There is what Jesus pronounces faith. When we find what that is, we have found faith. To know what that is, is to know what faith is. There can be no sort of doubt about this; for Christ is 'the Author ... of faith,' and he says that that which the centurion manifested was 'faith;' yes, even 'great faith.'

"Where, then, in this is the faith?--The centurion wanted a certain thing done. He wanted the Lord to do it. But when the Lord said, 'I will come' and do it, the centurion checked him, saying, 'Speak the word only,' and it shall be done.

"Now, what did the centurion expect would do the work? 'The word ONLY.' Upon what did he depend for the healing of his servant? Upon 'the word ONLY.'

"And the Lord Jesus says that that is faith." [5]

--From the writings of Robert J. Wieland, A. T. Jones, and Ellen G. White

[1] A. T. Jones, Lessons on Faith, p. 16; Review and Herald, Dec. 27, 1898.
[2] From the writings of Robert J. Wieland.
[3] A. T. Jones, "The Power of the Word II," Review and Herald, Oct. 27, 1896.
[4] Ellen G. White, "Who Will Accept the Light from Heaven?," Remarks at Bible School, Feb. 6, 1890; The Ellen G. White 1888 Materials, Ms. 10, 1890, pp. 555, 556.
[5] A. T. Jones, Lessons on Faith, pp. 15, 16; Review and Herald, Dec. 6, 1898.

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Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Lesson 7: Jesus: The Master of Missions

Sabbath School Today

With the 1888 Message Dynamic

Biblical Missionaries

Lesson 7: Jesus: The Master of Missions

Ellen White's dream was that the 1888 message would be proclaimed in "every church," and then it would spill out to the world beyond, where millions would find precious truth in a teaching of the cross, which they had never seen before.

The fact is that multitudes of Protestant and Roman Catholic Christians, utterly sincere, have never understood the cross of Christ! The reason is that their commonly held belief in natural immortality had been a dense fog that hides the truth of what happened on the cross from their view. Seventh-day Adventists have taught the non-immortality of the soul for nearly two centuries, but their confusion over the two covenants has kept them, too, from seeing clearly what happened on the cross. So the proclamation of the cross of Christ became the essence of the 1888 Loud Cry message that "we" had looked forward to for decades, and yet we had never known what it would be.

Jesus proclaimed this same truth, which is the core mission and "evangelism" teaching in the 1888 message. It was at the Feast of Tabernacles in Jerusalem just before His crucifixion:

"On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, 'If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said [Song of Solomon 4:15], out of his heart will flow rivers of living water'" (John 7:37, 38).

This is a profound statement of the method of evangelism and mission that Jesus loved. He is not putting pressure on us to do this or that; He is not making us feel guilty for not doing more "evangelism." He is guaranteeing that if we truly believe in Him, the purest evangelism will be flowing out of our hearts as from an overflowing fountain. Of course, no one can truly "believe" if he doesn't understand the message. Therefore the proclamation, the teaching, of the "most precious" truths is utterly essential.

This is the idea that Ellen White, A. T. Jones, and E. J. Waggoner saw in the 1888 message. The love for the message that is awakened by one's first discovering it, never dies. You long somehow to share it with every soul you meet. It's a replay of what motivated the early Christians, and youth catch the vision readily once they understand the message clearly.

All during the years Ellen White uttered her 300-plus endorsements of the 1888 message, her heart-burden was to give the message to the world. She was sorry that in the end of the era human opposition to the message resulted in its being "in a great degree kept away from the world" (Selected Messages, book 1, p. 235). The message itself was built-in "evangelism." It couldn't be stopped once it started unless "the brethren" succeeded in paralyzing it.

At the end of the era, her principal expressed disappointment was not that more money had not come in for "public evangelism," but that our ministers and people had not grasped the message itself. What occupied her mind at that time of the Loud Cry was not so much what we call "public evangelism" where one or a few individuals proclaim the message and many come to listen (that came later), but a personal mission on the part of members of the church who came to understand the message. She saw a one-to-one method of proclaiming it as highly efficient to the point of success in finishing the world gospel commission in that one single generation. She saw that that was Heaven's intention for us.

But the power behind her vision needs to be understood: it was "the truth of the gospel" as contained in the actual 1888 message itself. It was not theological conundrums unraveled; it was not Conference-administered "efforts" held in tents or meeting halls; it was simple truth grasped by ordinary people which they had never seen so clearly before. It gripped their souls as Good News that met their heart needs. It included fresh views of:

The New Covenant. It never before had been so clearly proclaimed. It inspired people to share the ideas.

The justification that Christ accomplished by His sacrifice "for the sins of the whole world." Calvinist and Arminian views had functioned like spiritual cataracts that blinded people; they were now removed. The resultant clarity was a powerful motivation to share the message.

The understanding of what faith is. It came into focus as a heart appreciation for what it cost the Son of God to save the world. Let the heart be moved with "the truth of the gospel," let the Savior be uplifted on His cross and nothing can stop the one who believes from sharing!

Obedience to the law. In the wake of the proclamation of the 1888 message, obedience became a joy. "Thousands of dollars" in back tithe flowed into the church without pressure being applied simply because the message of "faith which works by love [agape]" gripped souls. Returning tithe to the Lord became a joy because now it was seen that Christ's "yoke is easy, and [His] burden is light." Love of money was eclipsed by love of the gospel.

The nearness-of–the-Savior truth. This brought Jesus so close that "we" saw Him as being real, "a Savior nigh at hand and not afar off." The confusion in "our" idea of Christ's personality was resolved. Biblical ideas replaced the dimness of Protestant fog inherited originally from Roman Catholicism. Ellen White said that young people were brought face to face with Christ as though they turned a corner and there He was.

At last the sanctuary doctrine came alive. "We" discovered a reason for living that constrained "us" with new zeal. We could cooperate with Christ in His closing work as High Priest. Each individual suddenly acquired a self-respecting importance, someone who could help hasten the return of Jesus because we could actually help Him in His final task.

And on and on, the 1888 truths caused many to exclaim, "I never saw the Bible so clearly before!" They just had to tell others! No one could hold believers back.

Ellen White told us that we" would be surprised by "the simple means" that God will employ in the final proclamation of the third angel's message: this message of 1888 was it. It took everybody by surprise in 1888, including Ellen White herself. When the message itself in its pure strength is undiluted with Babylon's concepts that compromise it, will it not be proclaimed as Heaven intended, to "every Seventh-day Adventist Church" and then to the world? The final blaze of gospel glory will illuminate the world, and for the first time since Pentecost mission and evangelism will at last come into its own.

--From the writings of Robert J. Wieland

Note: "Sabbath School Today" is on the Internet at:

Raul Diaz

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Sabbath School Lesson 6 | "Esther and Mordecai" | Pastor Paul Penno

Lesson 6: "Esther and Mordecai"

Sabbath School Today
With the 1888 Message Dynamic
Biblical Missionaries
Lesson 6: "Esther and Mordecai"
"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" (Ellen G. White, Letter 55, Dec. 8, 1886; Selected Messages, book 2, p. 380).

Esther's story is a type of this end time process. Her "church," the nation of Israel and its system of worship had actually fallen. Their idolatry had become so pervasive, God allowed them to be taken captive by Babylon, but after 70 years they were allowed to return home. One of the many Jews who chose not to return to Israel was a man named Mordecai who was living in the city of Susa, one of the four capitals of the Persian Empire. Because her family was gone, he had adopted a young cousin, Hadassah, also called Esther. Mordecai raised her to love God and His people Israel, so when the time came God could use them both in a mighty way.

The story is simple. The Persian king was angry with his Queen Vasthi and replaced her with Esther after a nationwide compulsory "beauty contest." For unknown reasons, Mordecai advised her not to reveal her true racial identity at that time.

Haman enters the story as a man of petty and bigoted hatred born and nursed by his pride. The result was what all hatred produces, a desire for the death of its object. Mordecai refused to kneel in homage to Haman, which hurt his pride, so he convinced the king to kill not only Mordecai, but his entire race. Once again, a test of worship results in hatred and irrational anger. At the end of time, the test will be loyalty to the true God as manifested in an act of worship. Mordecai's actions sent a message that he would remain loyal regardless of the consequences. The message of righteousness by faith alone does and will cause hatred by those who are relying on their assurance of salvation based on their works, in which they have taken pride.

Esther was faced with a difficult choice. Her cousin was a known Jew, but Esther's secret had been preserved. If she kept it quiet, perhaps she had a chance of escaping the death squads. The parallel to the Godhead is unmistakable. When Adam and Eve sinned, God could have quietly let nature take its course, and they would have died as God predicted "on the day" that they ate of the tree. Then God could have created another pair as if nothing had gone wrong. But, the universe had not witnessed death, and the watching universe would wonder how a selflessly loving (agape) God could simply let go of those He loved. The plan of salvation was designed to demonstrate the lengths God will go in order to save His creatures.

Most of the human race does not know its true condition, sinners in need of a savior. Without a warning message, they will continue knowing nothing of their true condition and need. Most religions teach a form of works righteousness, which produces hopelessness. When Esther chose to disclose her true identity, she was willing to accept the consequences of being a part of a condemned group. Unlike Christ, Esther did not have a choice to be born Jewish, but Christ chose to be "made like His brethren," permanently aligning Himself with a doomed race. Like Esther, Christ in His humanity had no foreknowledge that His mission on earth would be successful, but He loved us with a self-emptying love and went in faith to the cross.

Three times Esther invited the King to her banquets, and on the third time she sealed her fate as permanently aligned with her corporate kin by disclosing her secret. Three times Christ asked for another way, but ultimately gave His will to His Father.

We are sometimes tempted to be discouraged with our church and what appears to be little acceptance of the message that was rejected after 1888. Some even believe they are justified in leaving the church, but this is not what God expects of us. We can choose to be part of the corporate body of the church. We can continue to pray for corporate repentance by those leaders who would stand in the way of fully proclaiming the message of righteousness by faith, and we must also acknowledge our part in the sin of the body.

Our lesson discusses the prudence of silence regarding our faith in certain circumstances. We are not told why Mordecai and Esther kept her racial identity and faith a secret, but there came a time when clearly, they had to take a stand. There are some who think we should never discuss or teach the message of 1888 unless it is so diluted as to be indistinguishable from nominal evangelical righteousness by faith. Certainly we need to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves, but if we truly believe this message is the "third angel's message in verity" (Review and Herald, April 1, 1890), it must be given in detail to a dying world .

Even on pain of death, the message must be given, but that is not humanly possible without the full acceptance of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Martyrdom is not something we volunteer for to make God think we are so pious that He will take us to heaven. The special 1888 message for the end time church is that God is able to change willing hearts with His agape love for the entire human race. We come to see ourselves as sinners equal with others who have yet to hear the message that saved the entire world. Our love for them (not ourselves) compels us to risk everything to tell them. We will be given great power that lightens the whole earth with glory, and that includes the change of heart from self-centered to urgent selfless outreach evangelism. Nothing will hold us back. What a privilege for those who are included in that group.

"I heard those clothed with the armor speak forth the truth in great power. It had effect. I saw those who had been bound; some wives had been bound by their husbands, and some children had been bound by their parents. The honest who had been held or prevented from hearing the truth, now eagerly laid hold of the truth spoken. All fear of their relatives was gone. The truth alone was exalted to them. It was dearer and more precious than life. They had been hungering and thirsting for truth. I asked what had made this great change. An angel answered, 'It is the latter rain. The refreshing from the presence of the Lord. The loud cry of the Third Angel.'

"Great power was with these chosen ones. Said the angel, 'Look ye!' My attention was turned to the wicked, or unbelievers. They were all astir. The zeal and power with the people of God had aroused and enraged them. Confusion, confusion, was on every side. I saw measures taken against this company, who were having the power and light of God. Darkness thickened around them, yet there they stood, approved of God, and trusting in Him. I saw them perplexed. Next I heard them crying unto God earnestly. Through the day and night their cry ceased not. I heard these words, 'Thy will, O God, be done! If it can glorify thy name, make a way of escape for thy people! Deliver us from the heathen round about us! They have appointed us unto death; but thine arm can bring salvation.' These are all the words I can bring to mind. They seemed to have a deep sense of their unworthiness, and manifested entire submission to the will of God. Yet every one, without an exception, was earnestly pleading, and wrestling like Jacob for deliverance" (Review and Herald, "The Future," Dec. 31, 1857).

There is no cause for discouragement. God's church goes through to the end. Take joy in this and "press together."

--Arlene Hill

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