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JimB

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #40 on: April 18, 2016, 04:31:04 PM »
I don't know as though I can point to scripture and give you a reason but I will give my thoughts, right or wrong for that matter.

As I understand things in the body when a bone is broken and when its' fully healed that area is much stronger than it use to be. When doing a weld on a piece of metal that has been broken or fatigued and when an expert welder is done fixing the problem the same piece of metal may break somewhere else but not in that same spot. I've also heard and read testimonies of married couples who claim they have a deeper relationship with each other than before an affair. Please don't take my comparison's too far.  I'm not saying that a way to a stronger marriage is for one of them to have an affair. I'm only stating what I've heard others say after the fact when things are truly healed.

So now let's apply this to us and our sin problem. We have been separated from God by our evil nature. God our creator who loves us makes an extra special effort to win us back and heal the broken relationship. In the process of healing this relationship the sinner experiences something called grace that not only forgives but strengthens him or her to live a victorious life. Throughout the life there may be ups and downs, mistakes made but in the process our relationship with the Lord is strengthened. There is for us a side of God that unfallen beings never get to experience. This reminds me of a hymn that I love to sing and refrain says what I'm trying to say. Here is the refrain says.

Holy, holy, is what the angels sing,
And I expect to help them make
the courts of heaven ring;
But when I sing redemptionís story,
they will fold their wings,
For angels never felt the joys
that our salvation brings.
By communion with God in nature, the mind is uplifted, and the heart finds rest.  {DA 291.1}

Keithstrong

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #41 on: June 16, 2016, 05:18:27 AM »
Well said, For me in the process of being saved i found myself beating myself up over my sinful conditions and that guilt/hate/anger drove me deeper into my sins and every time i would (step into the ring) (trying to put sinful habits out of my life) my guilt/hate/anger would kick in and my sins would become more frequent. I would try to talk to God through these moments and I would feel like the demoniac who was in chains  somehow I knew that Jesus was crossing the lake to come and show me that he saw my heart and wanted desperately to show me that he has forgiven me because even though my actions werent showing it YET, he knew my heart was lunging out for him. And as i started understanding that i was forgiven the guilt started falling away and the /hate/anger was subsiding and so the healing process began.....I am forever grateful of Jesus and i yearn to be like him.......
"Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show My people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins"

JimB

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #42 on: June 16, 2016, 05:25:53 AM »
Keith, it's great to you have join us in talking about the most precious thing to talk about. Our Savior is indeed one who desires to help all. As you discovered when we put our eyes on Christ His love shed abroad in our hearts will uproot the evil there!  Thank you for sharing with us your experience. It is good to hear the testimonies of others.
By communion with God in nature, the mind is uplifted, and the heart finds rest.  {DA 291.1}

Richard Myers

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #43 on: June 16, 2016, 05:52:46 AM »
Amen!! Welcome, Keith, to our beholding and sharing group! Until we see our continual need of Jesus in order to do any good thing, we won't take the time to behold Him. We think we are just fine without Him and we don't understand the power of beholding His grace to transform us, to change us, to reconcile us with Him.

As we share our testimony of what we have seen and how it does really change us, others will begin to understand how it is that we are saved each day, moment by moment. The only way to be justified, to be converted daily, is to keep Jesus foremost in our mind. We cannot walk on water separated from Jesus. We cannot love our enemy when we are not abiding in Christ and He in us.  But, when we are fully surrendered to Jesus, then His promise is ours to claim. "God [is] faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear [it]."  Cor. 10:13. If we are not in a converted state, we cannot claim this promise. We must first be converted, then we have Christ. And if we have the Son of God, then we have life and the promise belongs to us.

Our daily work is to first behold Jesus. And, then by beholding Him, we are transformed into His character. "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord."

Again, dear brother, welcome to our little group. May spending a thoughtful hour a day contemplating the life of Christ give you daily that which you long for!
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Keithstrong

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #44 on: June 16, 2016, 06:07:28 AM »
Thank you very much RM and JimB. That's why i am thankful for the group we have here. To read and talk is an amazing experience that i know will help me.
"Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show My people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins"

Pastor Sean Brizendine

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #45 on: July 15, 2016, 07:04:03 AM »
I am always blessed by coming to behold the loveliness of Jesus--He is so amazing!

By His life and His death, Christ has achieved even more than recovery from the ruin wrought through sin. It was Satan's purpose to bring about an eternal separation between God and man; but in Christ we become more closely united to God than if we had never fallen. In taking our nature, the Saviour has bound Himself to humanity by a tie that is never to be broken. Through the eternal ages He is linked with us. "God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son." John 3:16. He gave Him not only to bear our sins, and to die as our sacrifice; He gave Him to the fallen race. To assure us of His immutable counsel of peace, God gave His only-begotten Son to become one of the human family, forever to retain His human nature. This is the pledge that God will fulfill His word. "Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder." God has adopted human nature in the person of His Son, and has carried the same into the highest heaven. It is the "Son of man" who shares the throne of the universe. It is the "Son of man" whose name shall be called, "Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace." Isaiah 9:6. The I AM is the Daysman between God and humanity, laying His hand upon both. He who is "holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners," is not ashamed to call us brethren. Hebrews 7:26;  2:11. In Christ the family of earth and the family of heaven are bound together. Christ glorified is our brother. Heaven is enshrined in humanity, and humanity is enfolded in the bosom of Infinite Love. 

Wow! Wow! We have a Brother who will ever help us in our daily life! We need Him continually, and as we abide in Him, we will find the experience of true transformation of character--all the fruits of the Spirit will be revealed in the life that accepts and lives by faith upon Jesus Christ, who is truly "Immanuel"! I love Jesus and I pray that those of you who read this forum and share here will also be brought nearer to the Saviour, and that you will find a joy in His presence that is a wonderful foretaste of heaven, for "heaven is a ceaseless approaching to God through Christ" {DA 331.3}, meaning that the relational joy of heaven begins here!
"When we live by faith on the Son of God, the fruits of the Spirit will be seen in our lives; not one will be missing." {The Desire of Ages, 676.4}

Richard Myers

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #46 on: July 15, 2016, 07:09:26 AM »
Amen, Pastor Sean!!

As we begin reading this most wonderful book again, we are so thankful to have such a revelation of Christ. We know that before long this will be seen to be the most important forum on our site. Many do not understand their continual need of Jesus in order to resist sin. They have not experienced the joy of being truly converted, and do not understand we are continually changed by continually surrendering to Christ. We are converted daily by grace. That grace surrounds us as thick as the air we breathe. But, we must absorb that grace. It is by beholding His grace that we are transformed in character. It is an intellectual and a spiritual truth that by beholding we become changed. The mind gradually adapts itself to what it is allowed to dwell upon. "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord." 2 Cor. 3:18.

The church remains in a Laodicean condition. When we understand, as a people, we need to be converted, we will then see our need of Jesus. Let that reformation begin with us as we spend a thoughtful hour a day contemplating the life of Christ.

     It would be well for us to spend a thoughtful hour each day in contemplation of the life of Christ. We should take it point by point, and let the imagination grasp each scene, especially the closing ones. As we thus dwell upon His great sacrifice for us, our confidence in Him will be more constant, our love will be quickened, and we shall be more deeply imbued with His spirit. If we would be saved at last, we must learn the lesson of penitence and humiliation at the foot of the cross. 
     As we associate together, we may be a blessing to one another. If we are Christ's, our sweetest thoughts will be of Him. We shall love to talk of Him; and as we speak to one another of His love, our hearts will be softened by divine influences. Beholding the beauty of His character, we shall be "changed into the same image from glory to glory." 2 Corinthians 3:18.  Desire of Ages, pg 83. 


Come and taste, and see if He is not the desire of all ages!
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Pastor Sean Brizendine

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #47 on: July 15, 2016, 07:15:20 PM »
I cannot help but say, Amen! As we allow our minds to dwell upon Jesus, He is the one that changes us from glory to glory, from character to character.

Our part is small--yes, very small. But without it, we will not be saved. If we will not choose to daily behold Jesus, He will not change us without our consent, nor will He force us to behold Him. The Israelites being bitten by serpents had a very small part to play in their healing--they were to look at the uplifted serpent, representing Jesus, and they were to live. Look and live. There is a warfare to resist this experience of beholding--it is the daily battle with the flesh. When we surrender entirely to Jesus, our flesh remains to clamor for acknowledgement--but with Christ reigning in the new heart, we are made partakers of the divine nature. In Christ, we are enabled to do the deeds of omnipotence, because we are imbued with the power of the third person of the Godhead: the Holy Spirit.

As I reflect upon the Laodicean condition of the church, I am continually encouraged to look to Jesus as the only remedy, the only solution, and to invite others to do the same. As you step out in faith to take this journey in Desire of Ages through the life of Christ, let Christ work a miracle in your life: the choice is yours. You can surrender your heart to Christ, you can accept His divine grace, and let Him take your sin-polluted heart and give you a new heart: one that will bright forth the fruits of the Spirit without one missing.

Jesus loves you so much. Spend time with Him because it will bless His heart, and bring Him joy. And as you read of what it cost for Him to save you to even give you the opportunity to behold Him and be saved, let your heart be melted, wooed, and subdued by divine influences. Truly, Jesus is the sweetest name I know. And He wants you so much to experience the joy of His love and presence daily. In Him you will find the deepest heart longings satisfied in the way God intended: in relational intimacy with your loving Creator and Redeemer.
"When we live by faith on the Son of God, the fruits of the Spirit will be seen in our lives; not one will be missing." {The Desire of Ages, 676.4}

JimB

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #48 on: October 10, 2016, 06:50:43 AM »
Now sin has marred God's perfect work, yet that handwriting remains. Even now all created things declare the glory of His excellence. There is nothing, save the selfish heart of man, that lives unto itself. No bird that cleaves the air, no animal that moves upon the ground, but ministers to some other life. There is no leaf of the forest, or lowly blade of grass, but has its ministry. Every tree and shrub and leaf pours forth that element of life without which neither man nor animal could live; and man and animal, in turn, minister to the life of tree and shrub and leaf. The flowers breathe fragrance and unfold their beauty in blessing to the world. The sun sheds its light to gladden a thousand worlds. The ocean, itself the source of all our springs and fountains, receives the streams from every land, but takes to give. The mists ascending from its bosom fall in showers to water the earth, that it may bring forth and bud.

As someone who enjoys nature I've always found this paragraph telling. I had never considered what is wrote here before the first time I read this. Nature is created to serve other aspects of nature and this only make sense as Christ was the creator. But at the beginning of the paragraph is sharp contrast. Fallen human nature is compared to nature and it's called the only thing that serves itself. Is it no wonder that satan's way only leads to death and destruction. Evil will always implode on itself in the end. This is also why evolution is obviously wrong. Even the love displayed in "man's best friend" (dogs) is said to only be an evolutionary instinct to protect itself. How sad!

However, I love the title of this chapter "God with Us"! He is indeed with us and wants to dwell in hearts and have relationship with each of us that is unique and deep and personal enough that it's as though no one else exists. This sin ridden selfish world is the object of His special care. What a God we serve!
By communion with God in nature, the mind is uplifted, and the heart finds rest.  {DA 291.1}

Richard Myers

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #49 on: October 10, 2016, 08:17:46 AM »
Amen, Jim! What a loving God we behold each day!

We begin anew this morning reading from The Desire of Ages. Some may wonder why would we read from this Book every day. We could devote the time to reading the Bible or reading other inspired Books. But, we continue reading that which we read every day. Why? Why give up reading new material we have never before read? There are still articles in the Review and Sabbbath Herald I have never read. There are also manuscripts I have not read. Why not seek new information rather than reading that which I have been reading for over 30 years?

There is a truth Satan has been successful at keeping from professing Christians. We have discovered it and another truth. The two are so important that our very souls are dependent upon us walking in that light. The first truth is found in both this Book and in the Bible. There are three places in Scripture where I see it so profoundly revealed. But, we find it throughout the Bible. Here are the three places:

The first is one simple verse. "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord." 2 Corinthians 3:18. Let me shorten the verse a little so all may see it clearly. We all beholding the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image. What is the glory of the Lord? It is His character. What is His image? It is His character. Therefore, if we will behold His character, His Words, and deeds we shall be changed into His character of righteousness. In other words we shall become like Him in words and deeds. We may obtain the Living Water Christ gave to the woman at the well, and so may others. We may obtain the "wedding garment" which allows us into heaven. We may possess the righteousness of Christ. We may have it not only imputed to us, we may have it imparted to us. How? By beholding the character of our Lord which is His life.

We find this truth also in The Desire of Ages. " It would be well for us to spend a thoughtful hour each day in contemplation of the life of Christ. We should take it point by point, and let the imagination grasp each scene, especially the closing ones. As we thus dwell upon His great sacrifice for us, our confidence in Him will be more constant, our love will be quickened, and we shall be more deeply imbued with His spirit. If we would be saved at last, we must learn the lesson of penitence and humiliation at the foot of the cross. As we associate together, we may be a blessing to one another. If we are Christ's, our sweetest thoughts will be of Him. We shall love to talk of Him; and as we speak to one another of His love, our hearts will be softened by divine influences. Beholding the beauty of His character, we shall be 'changed into the same image from glory to glory.'"  Page 83.

A second place we find this truth in Scripture is in the conversation Jesus had with Nicodemus in the Garden. And, we find the second truth that is often hidden from man and many professing Christians. "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.... Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again....And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life." John  3:3,5,6,7,14,15.

There is no eternal life unless a man be born again of the Spirit of God. When we come into the world we are born of the flesh which is fallen. It cannot enter heaven until there is a new birth wherein the Spirit of God enters into the heart of man. Then he becomes a partaker of God's divine nature, he is converted from a sinner to a saint. "   Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust." 2 Peter 1:4. There is an exception to this truth that we find in Scripture. A baby with a fallen nature can come into the world filled with the Spirit of God. It is dependent upon the parents being filled with the Spirit of God. "   For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband: else were your children unclean; but now are they holy." 1 Corinthians 7:14.

That which is born of the flesh is flesh and must be born again of the Spirit. We must have the Spirit of God in order to have eternal life. How do we receive the Spirit of God? How are we converted? Jesus revealed 2 Corinthians 3:18 to Nicodemus but He sent him back to a lesson given to Israel in the Exodus from Egypt. "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life." The uplifted serpent was a representation of Jesus. He was made sin for us, that we might live We must look upon Jesus uplifted on the cross if we want to have life. It is by beholding Jesus that we are transformed in character. Let us "look and live."

The third place we find in the Bible a reference to beholding Jesus that we might have life is found in the Book of John. "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. I am that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world." Verses 47-51. We must feed upon Jesus. We must drink His blood and eat His flesh if we want to have spiritual life. We eat bread if we want to have physical life, but we need to learn of Christ if we want spiritual life. Man does not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceeds out of the mouth of God. It is a revelation of His character. The Word became flesh and dwelt among man.

This is why we spend a thoughtful hour a day contemplating the life of our Savior. This is why we are daily reading this most beautiful revelation of His character. Please come and see. Taste of the Goodness of our God. Join with us and receive the blessings God wants to pour out upon His children.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Pastor Sean Brizendine

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #50 on: October 10, 2016, 12:42:50 PM »
Jesus is the center of attraction in all of Scripture, and the spotlight is surely upon Him in this chapter. God abides with us through Christ as we surrender our hearts entirely to Him. I love Jesus because He first loved me, and I pray that all of us will be spiritually blessed and enriched by coming into such intimacy with Him through a living faith that is charged with the life-giving current of love from having experienced what it means to behold the loveliness of Jesus. We need not only behold Him once, but have our minds continually stayed upon HIm. To look to Him once is not enough; our continual need of Jesus is great, and with promises like we find in today's reading, we are encouraged in our heavenward journey to the celestial city where you and I, through divine grace, can have a closer intimacy and relationship with God in Christ than even the angels can know! What a God we serve! What love! Hallelujah!

"By His life and His death, Christ has achieved even more than recovery from the ruin wrought through sin. It was Satan's purpose to bring about an eternal separation between God and man; but in Christ we become more closely united to God than if we had never fallen. In taking our nature, the Saviour has bound Himself to humanity by a tie that is never to be broken. Through the eternal ages He is linked with us. "God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son." John 3:16. He gave Him not only to bear our sins, and to die as our sacrifice; He gave Him to the fallen race. To assure us of His immutable counsel of peace, God gave His only-begotten Son to become one of the human family, forever to retain His human nature. This is the pledge that God will fulfill His word. "Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder." God has adopted human nature in the person of His Son, and has carried the same into the highest heaven. It is the "Son of man" who shares the throne of the universe. It is the "Son of man" whose name shall be called, "Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace." Isa. 9:6. The I Am is the Daysman between God and humanity, laying His hand upon both. He who is "holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners," is not ashamed to call us brethren. Heb. 7:26; 2:11. In Christ the family of earth and the family of heaven are bound together. Christ glorified is our brother. Heaven is enshrined in humanity, and humanity is enfolded in the bosom of Infinite Love." {DA 25.2}

Thank You, Jesus! Thank You, Abba Father! And we can be so thankful that the Holy Spirit is even now moving upon our hearts to appreciate such wondrous truth--experientially!!
"When we live by faith on the Son of God, the fruits of the Spirit will be seen in our lives; not one will be missing." {The Desire of Ages, 676.4}

Richard Myers

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #51 on: January 05, 2017, 07:03:55 AM »
There are many temptations we face as we travel through life. One of the greatest I have discovered is the temptation to begin my day without having established a strong connection with Christ. It remains a well kept secret that the faith that enables us to be saved by grace comes from knowing the character of God. And, that faith must be fed daily. How do we obtain this "saving" faith? The Bible tell us how. "Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word." "The Word was made flesh." The Word is a revelation of Jesus Christ. In other words, if we want to know God, we behold Jesus in the Word. He came to this world to reveal the character of God. He is "Immanuel, God with us."

It is by beholding the life of Christ that we obtain saving faith. It is by beholding Jesus that we are not just saved, but transformed in character. We are given another nature that can keep the fallen nature under control. "Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust." 2 Peter  1:4. It is an intellectual and a Spiritual truth that by beholding we become changed. "We all...beholding....the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image...by the Spirit." 2 Corinthians 3:18.  The "glory of the Lord" is His character. Thus we may be changed into His "image" (character) by spending a thoughtful hour a day contemplating the life of Christ.
 
Yet, so many do not. It is our prayer that soon many will join with us in spending that thoughtful hour each day in beholding the loveliness of our Savior. The blessings are many and they are great!
 
As we begin again with the first chapter, we invite you to read along with us. We are just beginning a new year. If your promises to God have been as ropes of sand, then today is a good day to start anew. If you like to "hear" the truth, faith does come by hearing as well as by reading. Here is an audio narration of the first chapter God With Us.  And, here you will find narrations of most of the other chapters. Desire of Ages    We will complete narrating the book soon.

In this first chapter, God With Us, we learn of something so very important. It was not just for our salvation that Christ suffered and died. No, there was a difficulty in heaven, and in the universe that needed to be resolved. Sin was not just a concern on Earth, but was something that God wanted eradicated from the whole universe. We are His treasure that will for eternity testify to His righteousness and the power of His grace to keep from sin. We do not half understand the privilege extended to us.

    Of His people God says, "They shall be as the stones of a crown, lifted up as an ensign upon His land. For how great is His goodness, and how great is His beauty!" Zechariah 9:16, 17. The exaltation of the redeemed will be an eternal testimony to God's mercy. "In the ages to come," He will "show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus." "To the intent that . . . unto the principalities and the powers in the heavenly places might be made known . . . the manifold wisdom of God, according to the eternal purpose which He purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord." Ephesians 2:7; 3:10, 11, R. V.
     Through Christ's redeeming work the government of God stands justified. The Omnipotent One is made known as the God of love. Satan's charges are refuted, and his character unveiled. Rebellion can never again arise. Sin can never again enter the universe. Through eternal ages all are secure from apostasy. By love's self-sacrifice, the inhabitants of earth and heaven are bound to their Creator in bonds of indissoluble union. 
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Pastor Sean Brizendine

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #52 on: January 05, 2017, 09:02:52 AM »
Amen, Richard! I really appreciate your post this morning. It is so simple, direct, and Christ-centered. When we realize the privilege extended to us to daily behold the loveliness of Jesus, we will look forward to that time of the day the most of all! That has become my experience! I love to be with Jesus and let Him reveal more of Himself to me daily! He changes us as we behold Him and surrender entirely to Him! Praise the Lord!

  But turning from all lesser representations, we behold God in Jesus. Looking unto Jesus we see that it is the glory of our God to give. "I do nothing of Myself," said Christ; "the living Father hath sent Me, and I live by the Father." "I seek not Mine own glory," but the glory of Him that sent Me. John 8:28; 6:57; 8:50; 7:18. In these words is set forth the great principle which is the law of life for the universe. All things Christ received from God, but He took to give. So in the heavenly courts, in His ministry for all created beings: through the beloved Son, the Father's life flows out to all; through the Son it returns, in praise and joyous service, a tide of love, to the great Source of all. And thus through Christ the circuit of beneficence is complete, representing the character of the great Giver, the law of life.

What an eternal privilege that we get to be part of this "circuit of beneficence"! When we link up with Christ by His Spirit, our lives become active agencies for the salvation of others! Please invite someone else to join us in our "beholding" of Jesus here daily, and in reading (or listening) to The Desire of Ages! Transformation continues constantly through continual communion and abiding in Him! Hallelujah!!!
"When we live by faith on the Son of God, the fruits of the Spirit will be seen in our lives; not one will be missing." {The Desire of Ages, 676.4}

Pastor Sean Brizendine

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #53 on: April 02, 2017, 11:01:35 AM »
What a wonderful beginning to another time through Desire of Ages! I am so so thankful for all Christ has done for me and has done for each of us. As I was walking in the O'Hare Airport today, I was struck with the thought that EVERY PERSON I SEE is a son or daughter of Adam--what would Adam think if he saw the way our race is today? Yet we have a second Adam, Jesus Christ, who not only sees it all, but was treated in the way we deserve--so we may be saved. This is MARVELOUS GRACE!

  Christ was treated as we deserve, that we might be treated as He deserves. He was condemned for our sins, in which He had no share, that we might be justified by His righteousness, in which we had no share. He suffered the death which was ours, that we might receive the life which was His. "With His stripes we are healed." 

This is the power of the gospel. As we behold Christ's sufferings for us, we are set free from the power of sin, we realize its heinousness, and we choose to follow Jesus with the WHOLE HEART in SURRENDER OF ALL! He gave all, and now He invites us to become part of the circuit of beneficence to bless the entire world--and the universe! What a privilege grace affords us!
"When we live by faith on the Son of God, the fruits of the Spirit will be seen in our lives; not one will be missing." {The Desire of Ages, 676.4}

Richard Myers

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #54 on: April 02, 2017, 12:04:02 PM »
Amen, Pastor Sean!  What a chapter!!  I appreciate Isaiah so much. And, if the Jews who still reject Jesus as their Messiah will prayerfully study this chapter seeking truth, God will open their eyes to what (who) the sacrifices in their temple pointed to. It breaks my heart to contemplate what you shared this morning. "With His stripes we are healed."  He took my punishment while I was yet a sinner!! It is that which we call grace that transforms the character when we allow it into the heart. How evil is the fallen nature of man? All in nature takes to give, but not carnal man. The greatest miracle God can perform is to bring the carnal sons of Adam into such a holy relationship with Him, that it is closer than the angels enjoy.

    Now sin has marred God's perfect work, yet that handwriting remains. Even now all created things declare the glory of His excellence. There is nothing, save the selfish heart of man, that lives unto itself. No bird that cleaves the air, no animal that moves upon the ground, but ministers to some other life. There is no leaf of the forest, or lowly blade of grass, but has its ministry. Every tree and shrub and leaf pours forth that element of life without which neither man nor animal could live; and man and animal, in turn, minister to the life of tree and shrub and leaf. The flowers breathe fragrance and unfold their beauty in blessing to the world. The sun sheds its light to gladden a thousand worlds. The ocean, itself the source of all our springs and fountains, receives the streams from every land, but takes to give. The mists ascending from its bosom fall in showers to water the earth, that it may bring forth and bud.
     The angels of glory find their joy in giving,--giving love and tireless watchcare to souls that are fallen and unholy. Heavenly beings woo the hearts of men; they bring to this dark world light from the courts above; by gentle and patient ministry they move upon the human spirit, to bring the lost into a fellowship with Christ which is even closer than they themselves can know. 
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Pastor Sean Brizendine

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #55 on: June 28, 2017, 04:29:59 AM »
The earth continues to grow darker in its misapprehension of God--but we see in Jesus the only source of light to brighten the gloomy shadows. Let us join together as we again read through this marvelous revelation of the loveliness of Jesus, and share this revelation with everyone we meet by exemplifying His life in our daily conduct and character, for it is by beholding that we become changed!

    The earth was dark through misapprehension of God. That the gloomy shadows might be lightened, that the world might be brought back to God, Satan's deceptive power was to be broken. This could not be done by force. The exercise of force is contrary to the principles of God's government; He desires only the service of love; and love cannot be commanded; it cannot be won by force or authority. Only by love is love awakened. To know God is to love Him; His character must be manifested in contrast to the character of Satan. This work only one Being in all the universe could do. Only He who knew the height and depth of the love of God could make it known. Upon the world's dark night the Sun of Righteousness must rise, "with healing in His wings." Malachi 4:2. 

Our only hope is in Jesus--for He knows the love of the Father and will pour that love into us by HIs Spirit when we fully surrender to Him! Such an experience is the "new birth" whereby the heart and mind are made pure, keeping the fallen flesh from manifesting itself, and must be an experience we have daily, for God desires to continually reveal more of His love to us in Christ dying for sinners. We may rejoice to "die daily" (1 Corinthians 15:31).
"When we live by faith on the Son of God, the fruits of the Spirit will be seen in our lives; not one will be missing." {The Desire of Ages, 676.4}

JimB

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #56 on: June 28, 2017, 06:34:57 AM »
I like the principle you pointed out pastor Sean. "Only by love is love awakened".  Which is why John penned the verse that says "we love Him because He first loved us." This reminds of something that old reformer wrote. 

"Take away the knowldege of Christ, and a Christian is the most sad and melancholy creature in the world: again, let Christ but manifest himself, and dart the beams of his light into their souls, it will make them kiss the stakes, sing in the flames, and shout in the pangs of death, as men that divide the spoil."


It is by love that we are constrained to obey the One altogether lovely. It is by love for the Savior that we produce good fruit. After all He first loved us!!
By communion with God in nature, the mind is uplifted, and the heart finds rest.  {DA 291.1}

Richard Myers

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #57 on: June 28, 2017, 08:37:35 AM »
Amen and amen! It is by His stripes we are healed (converted). It is by grace we are saved (transformed in character).  I love this chapter. It not only points out our great need, but it reveals God's love. And, it reveals that it is not only us that  Christ suffered and died, but it was to place the universe on a safe foundation. Here we are given truth that few understand. What a responsibility rests with God's church!

    The Omnipotent One is made known as the God of love. Satan's charges are refuted, and his character unveiled. Rebellion can never again arise. Sin can never again enter the universe. Through eternal ages all are secure from apostasy. By love's self-sacrifice, the inhabitants of earth and heaven are bound to their Creator in bonds of indissoluble union. 


We and the entire universe must behold this great love to benefit from it. For eternity we shall all together celebrate God's love ever Sabbath in a special manner. What a Gift we have been given!! There is no greater sin than "unbelief". To know these things and then to sin is an amazing thing! How far removed we are from where God will soon have us....if we will spend a thoughtful hour a day contemplating this wonderful love revealed in the life of Christ.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Dorine

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #58 on: June 28, 2017, 01:14:01 PM »
What a blessing to read this chapter once again. Some of the thoughts brought out hit home much deeper than before. How humbling it is to read of the Father's love for His erring children; to allow His Son to come to this world that hated Him to the point of killing Him and be treated as we should be treated. How can humanity relate to such love.

"...in Christ we become more closely united to God than if we had never fallen. In taking our nature the Saviour has bound Himself to humanity by a tie that is never to be broken. Through the eternal ages He is linked with us........forever to retain His human nature......He who is "holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners," is not ashamed to call us brethren."

Deafening alarm bells should go off every time we are tempted to crucify Him again by indulging in our selfish desires. It's only by beholding HIm through reading and meditating on His life that we are put in a position for Him to soften and change our hearts.

I am so thankful for the promise that sin will never arise again. By His grace I will always be part of the group that is vindicating His name.
But this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press  toward the mark. Phil. 3:13,14

JimB

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Re: Read Online The Desire of Ages--1--God With Us
« Reply #59 on: June 28, 2017, 01:50:34 PM »
By His grace I will always be part of the group that is vindicating His name.

Dorine there was a lot think about in your post but this stood out to me. What you said reminds me of Daniel.

Daniel 1:8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.

Like you Daniel made his choice before hand, before he was even tempted. He knew what his choice would be should he be tempted. We need to be prepared before storm hits not waiting until it hits. How many of us follow the Lord's prayer and pray that we aren't lead in temptation and to deliver us from evil?

Thanks for the reminder Dorine!
By communion with God in nature, the mind is uplifted, and the heart finds rest.  {DA 291.1}