Daily Devotionals

The Choice Is Ours, January 11

And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely. Revelation 22:17.

The work of your salvation and mine depends wholly upon ourselves, for it rests with us to accept the provision that has been made for us. God has done everything for us that a God can do. Christ has purchased you with His own blood; He has paid the ransom money, that you might be united with God, and separated from sin and sinners. When the heart is opened to Christ, the Holy Spirit will work in it with mighty, renewing power. But in order that we may be laborers together with God, there must be on our part an entire surrender to God. We must, to the extent of our ability, devote ourselves to Him, straining every spiritual sinew, and as faithful soldiers doing service for Christ….

The law of duty [to God] is supreme. It claims authority over reason and conscience, over talents and possessions. It will admit no rival, and will not for one moment abate its high demands. It enters into no compromise with any oppressive power of earth. In every act of duty we are hiding self in Jesus. We reach out beyond ourselves, beyond the narrow scope of selfish and present gratification. Obedience to God brings the soul into agreement with the highest laws in the universe. It imparts dignity and true greatness to the humblest occupation where Christ can preside. It crowns the lowliest position in life with the highest honors, bringing man into alliance with God and binding up his interests with plans and purposes that have existence in the infinite mind from eternity.

The Lord Jesus Christ has paid the price for you, not to secure a mere assent to the truth, but for heart service. He desires the homage of your soul. You cannot cease to believe that you ought to do the will of God. You can no more release yourself from the claims of duty than you can flee from the presence of God. It is only in obedience to God that you will realize true happiness….

I entreat you to open the door of your heart and let your Saviour in. Give Him the whole heart—that which He has purchased. Ever bear in mind that it is you who must choose. God forces no man. He has chosen you, and engraven your name in the palms of His hands. Will you not give yourself fully to Him? Time is short. You have not a moment to lose in hesitation. The divine Word is in your hands, to be a lamp to your feet and a light to your path.—Letter 21a, January 11, 1893, to N. D. Faulkhead, treasurer of the Echo Publishing House, and at the time involved with secret societies.

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Keep the Pattern Before You, January 10

For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. 2 Corinthians 4:16.

There is a power for good in intellect, if it is conformed to the mind of Christ, sanctified and controlled by the Spirit of God. But intellect alone cannot give a fitness for heaven, or enable us to reach the divine standard. In order for a man to be what God desires him to be, he must have a pure, noble character. The right that one has to claim that he is a man is determined by the use that he makes of his intellect. Before man can be acknowledged as a laborer together with God, he must get out of and away from the self-confidence that claims much and gives little….

Human beings have no right to think that there is a limit to the efforts that they are to make to represent the goodness and love of God in the work of saving souls. Did Christ ever become weary in His work of soul-saving? Did He ever draw back from self-denial and sacrifice? When church members bring into their lives the self-denial that Christ brought into His life, when they put forth the continuous, persevering efforts that He put forth, they will have no time and no inclination to weave into their experience the false threads that would spoil the pattern….

We are to watch, and work, and pray, never letting self obtain the mastery. We are to be ready, through watchfulness and prayer, to spring into action in obedience to the Master's command. Wherever we see work waiting to be done, we are to take it up and do it, constantly looking unto Jesus….

For Christ's sake, watch and pray, and during the year that we have just entered, strive to restrain all harsh words. Resolve that you will not speak words that will cast a shadow over the lives of others. Do not stop to ask whether those around you appreciate your efforts to deny self. Open the windows heavenward. Think of Christ, and try to please Him….

Satan will use every possible device to make you like himself, and thus separate you from the One who gave His life for you. Evil angels will strive for the mastery in your life. If you have not on the whole armor of God, you will be overcome. Shall it be thus, or shall you sign the pledge that you will not be intemperate in word or in spirit, that you will keep the divine Pattern ever before you?

This warning was not given by the apostle without a purpose. We should all feel that it is our duty to stand at our post, on guard over ourselves, lest the evil agencies warring against us shall be successful in leading us to say and do that which will please the enemy.—Letter 11, January 10, 1905, “To Those Assembled at Council in Nashville.”

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God Stoops to Listen, January 9

For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones. Isaiah 57:15.

When man has taken the lines in his own hands to guide and drive, he will be rewarded, for the work of God will reveal terrible mistakes. Reason becomes blinded, even with the greatness of light, unless that agency is under the yoke of Christ. Every day some plan will be devised when Satan thinks he can lend a hand to sow his tares among the wheat. Vice is not to be commingled with virtue, and the cry may have to go forth in no measured tones, even now while missionary work is being done, “Come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you” (2 Corinthians 6:17). God is now working for His people, but how many do not recognize the work of God from a strange work.

Drawing aside the veil which conceals the glory of God, it shows Him in His place, high and holy, and lifted up, not in a state of solitude, but surrounded by ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands of holy, happy beings, every one waiting to bear the message, to do His bidding—all heaven is in active communication with every part of the universe through a variety of channels, and that holy One is actually stooping, bending from His throne, listening to every sound uttered, observing the movements of every earthly power. It is the highest Being condescending to the lowliest, approving or condemning every action which is developed.

He is interested in the oppressed, and sends messengers to engage in the work in connection with the gospel for the beings who have corrupted their whole mind and thoughts, and they are placed in connection with truth and righteousness. Unless they become righteous themselves, they will contaminate others. There is a work to be done in our world, but if the way of the Lord is not distinctly followed, to put them in the way of life through conversion, there is reason to be afraid lest Satan shall introduce himself to work the abandoned ones our institutions undertake to help.

Satan is playing a game of life for the souls of men and women for whom Christ has died. In our zeal to do a work for the Lord, we must be sure we are not going before Christ, in the place of following after Christ.—Letter 171, January 9, 1900, to Edson and Emma White.

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Prayer and Practice Must Be United, January 8

I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. John 15:5.

Wonderful opportunities are opened before the human agent to understand the unsearchable riches of the wisdom of God. In this work, which nothing less than divine power can accomplish, nothing can be perfected without the cooperation of the human agent. Then the divine and the human are blended, as in the life of the Son of God….

The sincere Christian, in his [acceptance] of grace, feels that his success is wholly dependent upon Christ. Here is the Source of divine energy. He urges no claim founded on his own merit; he has no faithfulness to present to heaven. He feels his own weakness and inefficiency, and is convinced that he must be transformed in character. Self-abasement, and self-renunciation reveal that the soul has beheld Jesus. The heart made penitent by the Spirit of Christ will act from principle. He is a partaker of the divine nature…. In his daily walk and conversation he represents the character of Christ….

What will it profit [us] to cherish pride of spirit, and pray for humility? What will it profit to seek eagerly the friendship and applause of the world, and pray for heavenly affections? What will it profit to indulge in passionate temper and un-Christlike words, and then ask for the meekness of Christ? This is not watching unto prayer. In the lack of that faith that works by love and purifies the soul lies the secret of unanswered prayer…. I tell you in the name of the Lord: if the church will arise in the strength of God to meet her responsibilities, consecrating to God every power, the Spirit of the Lord will be poured out in rich abundance….

Some who profess to be Christians need a genuine conversion. They desire to be accepted of God; they pray in a casual way that they may be accepted, and yet through their desire for gain, their worldliness and selfishness, their robbery of God, they shut themselves away from Him. His curse is hanging over them for their selfishness and worldly lusts. Their prayers will be wholly in vain unless they comply with the condition specified in the Word of God….

The uncertain experience of many professed Christians—sinning and repenting and continuing in the same dwarfed spiritual condition—is the result of worldliness and unholiness of life. The saving grace of Christ is designed for everyday life. Christ came not to save man in his sins, but from his sins. The principles of truth, abiding in the heart, will sanctify the life.—Manuscript 35, January 8, 1893, “Publishing Work.”

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Where Shall We Invest? January 7

But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. Matthew 6:20, 21.

Financial speculations are Satan's snares, laid to catch souls. In all business transactions the only safeguard for a man is the love and fear of God. In our world today there are seen the same dishonest practices which prevailed before the Flood swept this earth of its moral pollution, and which prevailed in Sodom before fire from heaven consumed its wicked inhabitants. Satan engrosses men's minds with dreamlike prospects of great gain, and in their greed for gain, those who yield to him make representations which are positively untrue. God and the truth are forgotten….

God desires His servants to avoid all speculation. Satan may pave the way by making the first investment successful, but O, how bitter will be the final outcome! If the professing Christian has success in his first speculation, his ruin is almost certain. Visionary schemes are wildly entered into as schemers present promising enterprises, which they declare will pay a large percentage on all money invested. Good men are fascinated and deceived….

Instead of entering into speculation, let those who know the truth find some steady, honest employment, in which they can earn their living in a way that glorifies God. Those who encourage the thirst for speculation will extinguish the light that God has given to guide their feet aright. Making money easily, they will spend it unwisely, and their prodigality will be their ruin. To maintain their habits of selfish indulgence, they must continue to make money rapidly. The effort to make money fast enough to meet their extravagant expenses, draws many into the gambling hell….

My prayer to our heavenly Father is, Lord, let the clear light shine forth. Carefully and prayerfully studied, God's Word keeps men well-balanced. In this Word we find God's way clearly defined. No one who searches the Word with sincerity will walk in darkness. But we cannot cast aside the light God sends, and at the same time walk in its rays. To be Christians at all, we must be Christians in all things, revealing His virtues, doing His works. The truth is our safeguard. Planted in the heart by the Holy Spirit, it enables us to see clearly the difference between what is right and what is wrong.—Manuscript 26a, 1890, “A Warning Against Financial Speculation.”

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The Ellen G. White Estate
12501 Old Columbia Pike,
Silver Spring, MD 20904, USA
Phone: +1 301 680 6540
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Copyright 2020 The Ellen G. White Estate