Daily Devotionals

Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? 2 Corinthians 6:14.

Dear Sister _____: I will not delay writing you that which the Lord brings to my mind. Your case was presented to me two years ago. I then saw you were a deceived woman. You thought you had clear light from God, but it was darkness. You have had views and an experience peculiar to yourself and not in harmony with the people whom God is leading….

There is no such thing as an instantaneous sanctification. It is an every-day work. Says Paul, “I die daily” (1 Corinthians 15:31). He received a conversion daily to God. As the truth and Spirit of God revealed to him the defects in his character, he put away his wrong, died to self, and cleansed himself “from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God” (2 Corinthians 7:1)….

Your peculiar ideas have had so powerful a control upon your mind [that] you could not dwell upon anything else. In meeting, you thought it your special duty to urge your opinions. You have taken your position above the church as though you were exalted and in the light and [as though] they must come up to your position, receive your views. You are fanatical; you have not a healthy imagination. Your influence will do harm and only harm, unless you become humble and teachable….

Satan is most successful when he can cover up minds in this kind of pious, sanctified consecration which has no part in the sanctification brought to view in the Word of God. It is, in short, a spurious article, that article [that] you possess. You received your views of sanctification from those who claim to be sanctified and holy, who have no love for the law of God and who have no love for His appearing. You received your light from a corrupt source; the stream that came from a corrupt fountain is impure.

As I write to you, your case is more plain and clear before me. You have allowed your views of sanctification to unite you to those who were grossly corrupt. You have not obeyed the Word of God and abstained from all appearance of evil. Satan has desired your soul that he might sift you as wheat. Your “holy, sanctified union” (as you have termed it) with individuals has been a delusion of Satan….

You have been led through your perverse ideas of sanctification to depart from the Word of God. You have a work to do to break all in pieces and give up your experience in the past few years and become as a little child and be converted, be humble and teachable that God may lead you.—Letter 10, August 5, 1870, to a church member in New York State.

From The Upward Look – Page 231

But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. James 1:22.

In order to be true soldiers of Jesus Christ we must meet the requirements of His Word as loyal subjects of the heavenly kingdom…. Those who claim to believe the truth must appreciate the great warfare before us and what is comprehended in being a faithful soldier of Jesus Christ…. The Saviour’s army invites voluntary enlistment. There must be a complete surrender of the passions, will, and ways to the will of the Master. Our work is to obey the orders of the mighty General of armies. A strong and active bodily organization is to be maintained. The senses must be enlightened as to perfect obedience; duties are to be done which cannot always be seen as essential; but now comes in the necessity of faith in a higher wisdom and power than your own. Have faith in God, unshaken faith in the skill and ability and fidelity of your Commander, who knows the plan of the battle.

The Lord Jesus does not deceive His soldiers. He opens before them the conflict, presents the plan of the battle, points out the hazardous undertaking, and exhorts everyone to count the cost. He does not leave them in ignorance. He tells everyone before enlistment to count the cost before they enlist as soldiers in His army, for a soldier’s life is a life of duty.

To every man in service is given his work, and no excuse can be accepted why that God-given work is not done. Some are negligent and indolent. Some are slothful servants like the man who had one talent entrusted to use and improve, but … buried it in the earth and made no use of it. When his talent was called for, to be rendered back to God, the Owner, he had only the one unused talent. No one was improved by his entrusted gift. The least he could have done was to use it to the best of his ability, but he handed it back with a complaint against God: “I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed: and I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine” (Matthew 25:24, 25). The Lord repeated His words, “Thou knewest.” The fact was he had not a knowledge of God and His works and His ways and His mercy and His kindness in giving an opportunity to improve the entrusted gift. The word is, “Take … the talent from him, and give it unto him that hath ten talents. For unto everyone that hath shall be given, … but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath” (verses 28, 29).—Manuscript 98, August 4, 1900, “True Soldiers of Christ.”

From The Upward Look – Page 230

He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked. 1 John 2:6.

The great Medical Missionary was a wonderful healer. He worked the most convincing miracles. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. He spoke only the truth. Continually there fell from His lips the precious words that bring spiritual strength to those who make them a part of the daily life. Spiritually we are built up from the food that we give the mind.

It is our privilege to receive the bread of life from the great Medical Missionary, who came to give life to the world. Truth, pure, refining, ennobling truth, came from His very heart…. His heart was constantly burning with the love that brought Him from heaven to our world. His goodness and His power enabled Him to reveal in His life the truth that He came to this earth to bring to the fallen race. In every word, in every act, He manifested the love of God, cheering and encouraging the downcast and distressed. In heavenly wisdom He asserted His true majesty by bending all things to the present and future happiness of human beings. He came to teach men and women how to live, here below, the life of which He gave them an example—the life that will make them fit to enter the abodes of bliss.

In His breast, mercy may be said to have held her court. Hear His words of compassion, spoken to relieve the sin-sick culprit, “Thy sins be forgiven thee” (Matthew 9:2)…. He brought healing to soul and body. In His life was enshrouded the love, the pity, the compassion, the joy, of heaven. Thousands were healed by His word, “I will; be thou whole.” By His work, His glory was so plainly revealed that demons were pained, and when compelled to cease tormenting human beings, confessed Christ to be the Holy One of God.

This work Christ did to show men that He was the tabernacle of witness; that the Word had been made flesh. In the human encampment, amongst the erring and sinful, Christ pitched His tent. He lived close to the poor and the lowly, yet He was the King of glory. He would make all familiar with His character, that we might be partakers of the divine nature, and thus become one with Him in faith and practice. He declares, “All things are delivered unto me of my Father” (chap. 11:27). “All things that the Father hath are mine” (John 16:15). “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth” (Matthew 28:18). Why was this wonderful transfer made but that Christ might be the world’s Redeemer, the incarnate Saviour! … The great Teacher, while on this earth, gave His whole life to teach us how to work as devoted, consecrated missionaries for God.—Letter 281, August 3, 1904, to Dr. W. H. Riley.

From The Upward Look – Page 229

And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him. Genesis 5:24.

God had a church when Adam and Eve and Abel accepted and hailed with joy the good news that Jesus was their Redeemer. These realized as fully then as we realize now the promise of the presence of God in their midst. Wherever Enoch found one or two who were willing to hear the message he had for them, Jesus joined with them in their worship of God. In Enoch’s day there were some among the wicked inhabitants of earth who believed. The Lord never yet has left His faithful few without His presence nor the world without a witness.

Enoch was a public teacher of the truth in the age in which he lived. He taught the truth; he lived the truth; and the character of the teacher who walked with God was in every way harmonious with the greatness and sacredness of his mission. Enoch was a prophet who spake as he was moved by the Holy Ghost. He was a light amid the moral darkness, a pattern man, a man who walked with God, being obedient to God’s law—that law which Satan had refused to obey, which Adam had transgressed, which Abel obeyed, and because of his obedience was murdered. And now God would demonstrate to the universe the falsity of Satan’s charge that man cannot keep God’s law. He would demonstrate that though man had sinned, he could so relate himself to God that he would have the mind and spirit of God and would be a representative symbol of Christ. This holy man was selected of God to denounce the wickedness of the world, and to evidence to the world that it is possible for men to keep all the law of God….

Enoch not only meditated and prayed, and put on the armor of watchfulness, but he came forth from his pleadings with God to plead with his fellow men. He did not mask the truth to find favor with unbelievers, thus neglecting their souls. This close connection with God gave him courage to work the works of God. Enoch walked with God and “had the testimony that his ways pleased God.” This is the privilege of every believer today. It is man dwelling with God, and God taking up His abode with man. “I in them, and thou in me,” says Jesus. To walk with God and have the witness that their ways please Him is an experience not to be confined to Enoch, to Elijah, to patriarchs, to prophets, to apostles, and to martyrs. It is not only the privilege but the duty of every follower of Christ to have Jesus enshrined in the heart, to carry Him with them in their lives; and they will indeed be fruit-bearing trees.—Manuscript 43, August 2, 1900, “The Prophet Enoch.”

From The Upward Look – Page 228

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. Galatians 5:22, 23.

The question of religious liberty needs to be clearly comprehended by our people in more ways than one. With outstretched arms men are seeking to steady the ark, and the anger of the Lord is kindled against them because they think that their position entitles them to say what the Lord’s servants shall do and what they shall not do….

Moses was specially chosen to be the visible leader of the children of Israel. Through long years of discipline he learned the lesson of humility, and he became a man whom God could teach and guide. He endured as seeing Him who is invisible. God trusted him—a daily learner in the school of Christ—with the leadership of the host of Israel. God talked with him face to face, as a man talketh with his friend. He was the meekest of all men. He did not seek to control the Holy Spirit, but was himself controlled by the Spirit….

Every man has an individuality of his own, which is not to be submerged in any other human being. The life of each one must be hid with Christ in God. Men are under God’s control, not under the control of weak, erring human beings. They are to be left free to be guided by the Holy Spirit, not by the fitful, perverse spirit of unsanctified men….

Let God be recognized as the supreme Ruler of His heritage. Let every man place himself under His control. Let Him be recognized in all our assemblies, in every business meeting, every council, every committee. He sees all that is done, and hears all that is said.

“Thou God seest me” (Genesis 16:13). Let these words be kept ever in mind. They will be a safeguard against imprudent, passionate speeches, against all desire to domineer. They will repress words that should never be spoken, and resolutions that men have no right to make—resolutions that restrict the liberty of human beings….

God calls upon men to act under His supervision, to accept His standard, to take all their decisions and plans to Him for approval. His holiness, His justice, is to keep them from unprincipled actions….

“Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God: which made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all that therein is: which keepeth truth for ever: which executeth judgment for the oppressed: which giveth food to the hungry…. The Lord shall reign for ever, even thy God, O Zion, unto all generations. Praise ye the Lord” (Psalm 146:5-10).—Manuscript 51, August 1, 1895, “God to Control His Heritage.”

From The Upward Look – Page 227