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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--72--In Rememberance of Me
« Last post by Dorine on Today at 06:12:19 AM »
Amen Pastor Sean. This was the quote that impressed me the most this morning. As we look to our Redeemer our hearts are melted, our hearts cleansed, our thoughts pure. These are scenes to contemplate as we move through this day. We will be kept in His love.
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The gospel of God's grace, even the everlasting gospel, is strikingly revealed with effective power in the Communion service. To eat bread that symbolizes Christ's broken body and drink the pure juice of the grape that symbolizes His blood shed for us is meant to impress our hearts with the infinite love of God in Christ for us. As we behold Christ's exceedingly beautiful loveliness of character culminating in His death on the cross to save us, we are changed in heart and mind. This is the miracle God intends will transpire each day as we come and learn of Him, the miracle of giving us a new heart and mind filled with all of the fruits of the Spirit so that not one is missing. Then self is dead because it has nothing to say when the cross is ever before the mind's eye, and the soul enjoys such vibrant union and communion with the Creator who risked all heaven to save even one of us. What wondrous love is this!!

"Looking upon the crucified Redeemer, we more fully comprehend the magnitude and meaning of the sacrifice made by the Majesty of heaven. The plan of salvation is glorified before us, and the thought of Calvary awakens living and sacred emotions in our hearts. Praise to God and the Lamb will be in our hearts and on our lips; for pride and self-worship cannot flourish in the soul that keeps fresh in memory the scenes of Calvary." {The Desire of Ages, page 661, paragraph 2}   
     "He who beholds the Saviour's matchless love will be elevated in thought, purified in heart, transformed in character. He will go forth to be a light to the world, to reflect in some degree this mysterious love. The more we contemplate the cross of Christ, the more fully shall we adopt the language of the apostle when he said, 'God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.' Galatians 6:14." {The Desire of Ages, page 661, paragraph 3}   
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Signs of the Times / Re: False Christs
« Last post by Glen McCluskey on August 20, 2018, 07:09:20 PM »
What are your studied thoughts about when Satan will personate Christ, before or after the close of probation ? Could it be that since the devil will personae Christ multiple times that it may happen before and after probation closes both ?

The SOP says that Satan's personation of Christ occurs after the close of probation.  Note the first and last paragraphs in the quote below.

The same can be derived from the GC discussion.  The chapter "The Time of Trouble" starts at GC 613, and the first paragraphs make clear that probation has closed at this point.  Then GC 624 talks about Satan's personation of Christ.

Even though probation has closed, this event is still a test for God's people, because the idea that they will not yield to Satan during this time is only theoretical, until the time of trouble actually occurs and they are put to the test.

Beyond this, there are earlier tests.  For example, the second quote below says that many people in the church today are welcoming Satan as a friend.

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The apostle John in vision heard a loud voice in Heaven exclaiming, "Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time." [Revelation 12:12.] Fearful are the scenes which call forth this exclamation from the heavenly voice. The wrath of Satan increases as his time grows short, and his work of deceit and destruction reaches its culmination in the time of trouble. God's long-suffering has ended. The world has rejected his mercy, despised his love, and trampled upon his law. The wicked have passed the boundary of their probation, and the Lord withdraws his protection, and leaves them to the mercy of the leader they have chosen. Satan will have power over those who have yielded themselves to his control, and he will plunge the inhabitants of the earth into one great, final trouble. As the angels of God cease to hold in check the fierce winds of human passion, all the elements of strife will be let loose. The whole world will be involved in ruin more terrible than that which came upon Jerusalem of old.  {4SP 440.3}
 
A single angel destroyed all the first-born of the Egyptians, and filled the land with mourning. When David offended against God by numbering the people, one angel caused that terrible destruction by which his sin was punished. The same destructive power exercised by holy angels when God commands, will be exercised by evil angels when he allows. There are forces now ready, and only waiting the divine permission, to spread desolation everywhere.  {4SP 441.1}
 
Fearful sights of a supernatural character will soon be revealed in the heavens, in token of the power of miracle-working demons. The spirits of devils will go forth to the kings of the earth and to the whole
world. Rulers and subjects will be alike deceived. Persons will arise pretending to be Christ, and claiming the title and the worship which belong to the world's Redeemer. They will perform wonderful miracles of healing, and will profess to have revelations from Heaven contradicting the testimony of the Scriptures.  {4SP 441.2} 

As the crowning act in the great drama of deception, Satan himself will attempt to personate Christ. The church has long professed to look to the Saviour's advent as the consummation of her hopes. Now the great deceiver will make it appear that Christ has come. In different parts of the earth, Satan will manifest himself among men as a majestic being of dazzling brightness, resembling the description of the Son of God given by John in the Revelation. [Revelation 1:13-15.] The glory that surrounds him is unsurpassed by anything that mortal eyes have yet beheld. The shout of triumph rings out upon the air, "Christ has come! Christ has come!" The people prostrate themselves in adoration before him, while he lifts up his hands, and pronounces a blessing upon them, as Christ blessed his disciples when he was personally upon the earth. His voice is soft and subdued, yet full of melody. In gentle, compassionate tones he presents some of the same gracious, heavenly truths which the Saviour uttered; he heals the diseases of the people, and then, in his assumed character of Christ, he claims to have changed the Sabbath to Sunday, and commands all to hallow the day which he has blessed. He declares that those who persist in keeping holy the seventh day are blaspheming his name by refusing to listen to his angels sent to them with light and truth. This is the strong, almost overmastering delusion. Like the Samaritans who were deceived by Simon Magus, the multitudes, from the least to the greatest, give heed to these sorceries, saying, This is "the great power of God."  {4SP 442.1}

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The enemy is preparing for his last campaign against the church. He has so concealed himself from view that many can hardly believe that he exists, much less can they be convinced of his amazing activity and power. They have to a great extent forgotten his past record; and when he makes another advance move, they will not recognize him as their enemy, that old serpent, but they will consider him a friend, one who is doing a good work. Boasting of their independence they will, under his specious, bewitching influence, obey the worst impulses of the human heart and yet believe that God is leading them. Could their eyes be opened to distinguish their captain, they would see that they are not serving God, but the enemy of all righteousness. They would see that their boasted independence is one of the heaviest fetters Satan can rivet on unbalanced minds.  {5T 294.1}
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Signs of the Times / Re: False Christs
« Last post by Wally on August 20, 2018, 05:04:12 PM »
I believe he will do it before the close of probation, because that will be the biggest deception, and only those who have a love of the truth and have fortified their minds with the truths of the Bible will avoid deception. But that doesn't mean he disappears after the close of probation, since he doesn't know when probation closes, and will want to egg is followers on in his attempt to destroy God's people.  I think his deception will continue until the very end.
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Signs of the Times / Re: False Christs
« Last post by thx4mercy on August 20, 2018, 09:25:28 AM »
when Satan will personate Christ, before or after the close of probation ?

Doesn't seem that it would serve any purpose after probation closes.
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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--71--A Servant of Servants
« Last post by Richard Myers on August 20, 2018, 08:53:23 AM »
Amen Pastor Sean! Grace is more than a word, it is the power that transforms Sinners into Saints. It was Grace that touched the hearts of the disciples that night when Jesus washed their dirty feet. They didn't deserve to have God washing their feet, they ought to have washed His feet. This was Grace. It melted their hearts and converted them that night. All except Judas where reconverted. This is the all important lesson that we must not only learn, but avail ourselves of each day. It is by beholding Jesus that we become converted. We must die daily. 2 Corinthians 3:18 is the key to not only being converted, but maintaining that connection with Christ.

When Jesus girded Himself with a towel to wash the dust from their feet, He desired by that very act to wash the alienation, jealousy, and pride from their hearts. This was of far more consequence than the washing of their dusty feet. With the spirit they then had, not one of them was prepared for communion with Christ. Until brought into a state of humility and love, they were not prepared to partake of the paschal supper, or to share in the memorial service which Christ was about to institute. Their hearts must be cleansed. Pride and self-seeking create dissension and hatred, but all this Jesus washed away in washing their feet. A change of feeling was brought about. Looking upon them, Jesus could say, "Ye are clean." Now there was union of heart, love for one another. They had become humble and teachable. Except Judas, each was ready to concede to another the highest place. Now with subdued and grateful hearts they could receive Christ's words. 
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Signs of the Times / Re: False Christs
« Last post by colporteur on August 20, 2018, 07:42:56 AM »
What are your studied thoughts about when Satan will personate Christ, before or after the close of probation ? Could it be that since the devil will personae Christ multiple times that it may happen before and after probation closes both ?
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Amen, Jim and Dorine! We are so blessed to have a Savior who loves us so much that He rebukes and chastens us not necessarily by words, but by His unselfish life that did not stop treating us with unselfish love. I am so thankful that all Jesus convicts of is a revelation of His grace and power to cleanse us from it, and make us like Him in mind and character. What a blessing to approach communion when the heart has been cleansed by His efficacy, and we are imbued with all of the fruits of the Spirit without one missing flowing out in willing service to God and others. What a Savior we have! What grace to change a wretch like me to make me into a servant like Him!

"The holy Watcher from heaven is present at this season to make it one of soul searching, of conviction of sin, and of the blessed assurance of sins forgiven. Christ in the fullness of His grace is there to change the current of the thoughts that have been running in selfish channels. The Holy Spirit quickens the sensibilities of those who follow the example of their Lord. As the Saviour's humiliation for us is remembered, thought links with thought; a chain of memories is called up, memories of God's great goodness and of the favor and tenderness of earthly friends. Blessings forgotten, mercies abused, kindnesses slighted, are called to mind. Roots of bitterness that have crowded out the precious plant of love are made manifest. Defects of character, neglect of duties, ingratitude to God, coldness toward our brethren, are called to remembrance. Sin is seen in the light in which God views it. Our thoughts are not thoughts of self-complacency, but of severe self-censure and humiliation. The mind is energized to break down every barrier that has caused alienation. Evil thinking and evilspeaking are put away. Sins are confessed, they are forgiven. The subduing grace of Christ comes into the soul, and the love of Christ draws hearts together in a blessed unity." {The Desire of Ages, page 650, paragraph 5}
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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--71--A Servant of Servants
« Last post by Dorine on August 20, 2018, 06:32:56 AM »
  "To those who receive the spirit of this service, it can never become a mere ceremonial. Its constant lesson will be, "By love serve one another." Galatians 5:13. In washing the feet of His disciples, Christ gave evidence that He would do any service, however humble, that would make them heirs with Him of the eternal wealth of heaven's treasure. His disciples, in performing the same rite, pledge themselves in like manner to serve their brethren. Whenever this ordinance is rightly celebrated, the children of God are brought into a holy relationship, to help and bless each other. They covenant that the life shall be given to unselfish ministry. And this, not only for one another. Their field of labor is as wide as their Master's was. The world is full of those who need our ministry. The poor, the helpless, the ignorant, are on every hand. Those who have communed with Christ in the upper chamber will go forth to minister as He did."      

This is a beautiful service that draws God's saints together in harmony with God and each other. Even if we have entered the sanctuary with an unhappy spirit this is the time to make things right with God and any we may have offended. Then we can enter the communion service with joy and peace knowing all is right with God and others; sharing in the bread, wine and testimonies. From there we are ready to serve and bless others in a spirit that can't help but reveal God's love to all mankind. Jesus is my example every day and by His grace, I commit this day to follow Him.
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The Desire of Ages / Re: The Desire of Ages--71--A Servant of Servants
« Last post by JimB on August 20, 2018, 05:23:27 AM »
So Christ expressed His love for His disciples. Their selfish spirit filled Him with sorrow, but He entered into no controversy with them regarding their difficulty. Instead He gave them an example they would never forget. His love for them was not easily disturbed or quenched. He knew that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He came from God, and went to God. He had a full consciousness of His divinity; but He had laid aside His royal crown and kingly robes, and had taken the form of a servant. One of the last acts of His life on earth was to gird Himself as a servant, and perform a servant's part.

What a wonderful example we have in how Christ treated others even profession Christians. His love and patience was not easily disturbed and instead found a way to show them and be an example of what we all should become with Christ's help.
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