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Mimi

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The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« on: December 29, 2008, 05:14:52 AM »
Chap. 11 - The Baptism


Listen to    The Baptism

 






    Tidings of the wilderness prophet and his wonderful announcement, spread throughout Galilee. The message reached the peasants in the remotest hill towns, and the fisher folk by the sea, and in these simple, earnest hearts found its truest response. In Nazareth it was told in the carpenter shop that had been Joseph's, and One recognized the call. His time had come. Turning from His daily toil, He bade farewell to His mother, and followed in the steps of His countrymen who were flocking to the Jordan. 
     Jesus and John the Baptist were cousins, and closely related by the circumstances of their birth; yet they had had no direct acquaintance with each other. The life of Jesus had been spent at Nazareth in Galilee; that of John, in the wilderness of Judea. Amid widely different surroundings they had lived in seclusion, and had had no communication with each other. Providence had ordered this. No occasion was to be given for the charge that they had conspired together to support each other's claims. 
     John was acquainted with the events that had marked the birth of Jesus. He had heard of the visit to Jerusalem in His boyhood, and of what had passed in the school of the rabbis. He knew of His sinless life, and believed Him to be the Messiah; but of this he had no positive assurance. The fact that Jesus had for so many years remained in obscurity, giving no special evidence of His mission, gave occasion for doubt as to whether He could be the Promised One. The Baptist, however, waited in faith, believing that in God's own time all would be made plain. It had been revealed to him that the Messiah would seek baptism at his hands, and that a sign of His divine character should then be given. Thus he would be enabled to present Him to the people.
     When Jesus came to be baptized, John recognized in Him a purity of character that he had never before perceived in any man. The very atmosphere of His presence was holy and awe-inspiring. Among the multitudes that had gathered about him at the Jordan, John had heard dark tales of crime, and had met souls bowed down with the burden of myriad sins; but never had he come in contact with a human being from whom there breathed an influence so divine. All this was in harmony with what had been revealed to John regarding the Messiah. Yet he shrank from granting the request of Jesus. How could he, a sinner, baptize the Sinless One? And why should He who needed no repentance submit to a rite that was a confession of guilt to be washed away?
     As Jesus asked for baptism, John drew back, exclaiming, "I have need to be baptized of Thee, and comest Thou to me?" With firm yet gentle authority, Jesus answered, "Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness." And John, yielding, led the Saviour down into the Jordan, and buried Him beneath the water. "And straightway coming up out of the water," Jesus "saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon Him."
     Jesus did not receive baptism as a confession of guilt on His own account. He identified Himself with sinners, taking the steps that we are to take, and doing the work that we must do. His life of suffering and patient endurance after His baptism was also an example to us. 
     Upon coming up out of the water, Jesus bowed in prayer on the river bank. A new and important era was opening before Him. He was now, upon a wider stage, entering on the conflict of His life. Though He was the Prince of Peace, His coming must be as the unsheathing of a sword. The kingdom He had come to establish was the opposite of that which the Jews desired. He who was the foundation of the ritual and economy of Israel would be looked upon as its enemy and destroyer. He who had proclaimed the law upon Sinai would be condemned as a transgressor. He who had come to break the power of Satan would be denounced as Beelzebub. No one upon earth had understood Him, and during His ministry He must still walk alone. Throughout His life His mother and His brothers did not comprehend His mission. Even His disciples did not understand Him. He had dwelt in eternal light, as one with God, but His life on earth must be spent in solitude.
     As one with us, He must bear the burden of our guilt and woe. The Sinless One must feel the shame of sin. The peace lover must dwell with strife, the truth must abide with falsehood, purity with vileness. Every sin, every discord, every defiling lust that transgression had brought, was torture to His spirit. 
     Alone He must tread the path; alone He must bear the burden. Upon Him who had laid off His glory and accepted the weakness of humanity the redemption of the world must rest. He saw and felt it all, but His purpose remained steadfast. Upon His arm depended the salvation of the fallen race, and He reached out His hand to grasp the hand of Omnipotent Love.
     The Saviour's glance seems to penetrate heaven as He pours out His soul in prayer. Well He knows how sin has hardened the hearts of men,  and how difficult it will be for them to discern His mission, and accept the gift of salvation. He pleads with the Father for power to overcome their unbelief, to break the fetters with which Satan has enthralled them, and in their behalf to conquer the destroyer. He asks for the witness that God accepts humanity in the person of His Son. 
     Never before have the angels listened to such a prayer. They are eager to bear to their loved Commander a message of assurance and comfort. But no; the Father Himself will answer the petition of His Son. Direct from the throne issue the beams of His glory. The heavens are opened, and upon the Saviour's head descends a dovelike form of purest light,--fit emblem of Him, the meek and lowly One. 
     Of the vast throng at the Jordan, few except John discerned the heavenly vision. Yet the solemnity of the divine Presence rested upon the assembly. The people stood silently gazing upon Christ. His form was bathed in the light that ever surrounds the throne of God. His upturned face was glorified as they had never before seen the face of man. From the open heavens a voice was heard saying, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." 
     These words of confirmation were given to inspire faith in those who witnessed the scene, and to strengthen the Saviour for His mission. Notwithstanding that the sins of a guilty world were laid upon Christ, notwithstanding the humiliation of taking upon Himself our fallen nature, the voice from heaven declared Him to be the Son of the Eternal. 
     John had been deeply moved as he saw Jesus bowed as a suppliant, pleading with tears for the approval of the Father. As the glory of God encircled Him, and the voice from heaven was heard, John recognized the token which God had promised. He knew that it was the world's Redeemer whom he had baptized. The Holy Spirit rested upon him, and with outstretched hand pointing to Jesus, he cried, "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." 
     None among the hearers, and not even the speaker himself, discerned the import of these words, "the Lamb of God." Upon Mount Moriah, Abraham had heard the question of his son, "My father, . . . where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" The father answered, "My son, God will provide Himself a lamb for a burnt offering." Genesis 22:7, 8. And in the ram divinely provided in the place of Isaac, Abraham saw a symbol of Him who was to die for the sins of men. The Holy Spirit through Isaiah, taking up the illustration, prophesied of the Saviour, "He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter," "and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all" (Isaiah 53:7, 6); but the people of Israel had not understood the lesson. Many of them regarded the sacrificial offerings much as the heathen looked upon their sacrifices,--as gifts by which they themselves might propitiate the Deity. God desired to teach them that from His own love comes the gift which reconciles them to Himself.
     And the word that was spoken to Jesus at the Jordan, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased," embraces humanity. God spoke to Jesus as our representative. With all our sins and weaknesses, we are not cast aside as worthless. "He hath made us accepted in the Beloved." Ephesians 1:6. The glory that rested upon Christ is a pledge of the love of God for us. It tells us of the power of prayer,--how the human voice may reach the ear of God, and our petitions find acceptance in the courts of heaven. By sin, earth was cut off from heaven, and alienated from its communion; but Jesus has connected it again with the sphere of glory. His love has encircled man, and reached the highest heaven. The light which fell from the open portals upon the head of our Saviour will fall upon us as we pray for help to resist temptation. The voice which spoke to Jesus says to every believing soul, This is My beloved child, in whom I am well pleased.
     "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is." 1 John 3:2. Our Redeemer has opened the way so that the most sinful, the most needy, the most oppressed and despised, may find access to the Father. All may have a home in the mansions which Jesus has gone to prepare. "These things saith He that is holy, He that is true, He that hath the key of David, He that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth; . . . behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it." Revelation 3:7, 8.
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Mimi

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2008, 08:48:38 AM »
I have often wondered why John the Baptist and Jesus did not grow up knowing each other and this story tells why - heaven ordained it to be so.

Quote
   Jesus and John the Baptist were cousins, and closely related by the circumstances of their birth; yet they had had no direct acquaintance with each other. The life of Jesus had been spent at Nazareth in Galilee; that of John, in the wilderness of Judea. Amid widely different surroundings they had lived in seclusion, and had had no communication with each other. Providence had ordered this. No occasion was to be given for the charge that they had conspired together to support each other's claims.
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Richard Myers

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2008, 09:35:07 AM »
The glory that rested upon Christ is a pledge of the love of God for us. It tells us of the power of prayer,--how the human voice may reach the ear of God, and our petitions find acceptance in the courts of heaven. By sin, earth was cut off from heaven, and alienated from its communion; but Jesus has connected it again with the sphere of glory. His love has encircled man, and reached the highest heaven. The light which fell from the open portals upon the head of our Saviour will fall upon us as we pray for help to resist temptation.

So few pray for help to resist temptation. Why? Because they do not feel condemned by their sins. They have been taught they have eternal life in their sins. :(

Here we see that the love of God for us has given us opportunity to receive power from on high. Not just for our physical needs, but for grace to resist sin.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Mimi

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2008, 09:52:22 AM »
Indeed, dear brother. I was visiting with a friend this morning saying how accustomed we have become in beholding unspeakably sinful acts all around us and it sometimes gets to a point that it just doesn't seem so wrong anymore, thus the prodding of the Holy Spirit become a faint irritating element in our hearts.

More and more we must be on guard to keep ourselves separate while we are in the world to help bring others to a realization of what exactly it is they are doing to themselves. John the Baptist had never seen a sinless One, yet he fully recognized His holy character and demeanor when he saw him. That is exactly the influence we should be wherever we go and to each individual we meet.   
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Wally

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2008, 04:57:42 PM »

So few pray for help to resist temptation. Why? Because they do not feel condemned by their sins. They have been taught they have eternal life in their sins. :(

Here we see that the love of God for us has given us opportunity to receive power from on high. Not just for our physical needs, but for grace to resist sin.

Not only do they not feel condemned by their sins; it is often the case that they have no real desire to overcome them.  They are like a dog returning to its vomit.  Think about it:  if we really desire victory, will we not plead for the power to resist temptation?  And if we are not pleading for that power (which has been promised to us) is it not because we have no firm desire to be rid of our sins?  I do not presume to judge anyone's character or motives, but am just following the logic where it leads. 

So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants:  we have done that which was our duty to do.  Luke 17:10

Richard Myers

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2008, 08:23:53 AM »
We hear "There is no condemnation to those who are in Christ".

This is to excuse sin. But, while this is the NIV, the Bible says "There is therefore now no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit."

Satan is in earnest in many ways to quiet the promptings of the Holy Spirit to convict of sin. One of his great deceptions to that man is saved while sinning. Thus the law, the "school-master", is not able to condemn the sinner. This is why so few pray for grace to overcome.
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Mimi

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2009, 09:59:52 AM »
The Baptism is a very important chapter for us to grasp. It stresses the solitary road Jesus must travel while on earth to live as One among men.

  • He who was the foundation of the ritual and economy of Israel would be looked upon as its enemy and destroyer.
  • He who had proclaimed the law upon Sinai would be condemned as a transgressor.
  • He who had come to break the power of Satan would be denounced as Beelzebub.
  • He had dwelt in eternal light, as one with God, but His life on earth must be spent in solitude.


Quote
The Saviour's glance seems to penetrate heaven as He pours out His soul in prayer. Well He knows how sin has hardened the hearts of men, and how difficult it will be for them to discern His mission, and accept the gift of salvation. He pleads with the Father for power to overcome their unbelief, to break the fetters with which Satan has enthralled them, and in their behalf to conquer the destroyer. He asks for the witness that God accepts humanity in the person of His Son.

     Never before have the angels listened to such a prayer. They are eager to bear to their loved Commander a message of assurance and comfort. But no; the Father Himself will answer the petition of His Son. Direct from the throne issue the beams of His glory. The heavens are opened, and upon the Saviour's head descends a dovelike form of purest light,--fit emblem of Him, the meek and lowly One.

     Of the vast throng at the Jordan, few except John discerned the heavenly vision. Yet the solemnity of the divine Presence rested upon the assembly. The people stood silently gazing upon Christ. His form was bathed in the light that ever surrounds the throne of God. His upturned face was glorified as they had never before seen the face of man. From the open heavens a voice was heard saying, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."

Oh, to have witnessed this.
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Mimi

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2009, 11:39:48 AM »
For those who wish to follow along, here is an audio version of    The Desire of Ages
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

Mimi

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2009, 12:56:01 PM »
Quote
With all our sins and weaknesses, we are not cast aside as worthless. "He hath made us accepted in the Beloved." Eph. 1:6. The glory that rested upon Christ is a pledge of the love of God for us. It tells us of the power of prayer,--how the human voice may reach the ear of God, and our petitions find acceptance in the courts of heaven. By sin, earth was cut off from heaven, and alienated from its communion; but Jesus has connected it again with the sphere of glory. His love has encircled man, and reached the highest heaven. The light which fell from the open portals upon the head of our Saviour will fall upon us as we pray for help to resist temptation. The voice which spoke to Jesus says to every believing soul, This is My beloved child, in whom I am well pleased.

When we find ourselves fallen from grace, it is imperative that we know that we are not cast aside as worthless. Without that knowledge, many would give up in utter despair. Recently, a trial that has burdened my soul for years reared up with intensity and I absolutely failed the test. At one time I was sure the victory had been won, yet it obviously has not. So to find myself back where I began has been a huge spiritual blow and a sure disappointment to heaven. Consequently knowing The light which fell from the open portals upon the head of our Saviour will fall upon us as we pray for help to resist temptation is the light I long for when meeting this trial once more. We are surely told tests given remaining unconquered, not overcome through the power of the Holy Spirit will be repeated until a victory for heaven's side is won and a character can be perfected, fitted for heaven.   
  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven. Psalm 119:89 

JimB

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2016, 05:17:30 AM »
There are a couple of things in that stood out to me in this chapter. First.

Every sin, every discord, every defiling lust that transgression had brought, was torture to His spirit.  {DA 111.4} 

When I read this and think that we are calling ourselves Christian, that is to be Christ like. I asked myself, "this is true also of me?" Does every sin witnessed bring torture to my spirit or am I so calloused and indifferent that I don't even notice? Years and Years ago I remember trying to defend going to the movies to my parents by telling them that I didn't even notice the swearing. :(  How telling this was of where my heart was at the time. I look back now and cringe at my foolishness and swearing was probably the least objectionable thing the movies.

We have such a wonderfully loving Savior. He is good to us wants only the best for us. Look at this...

The glory that rested upon Christ is a pledge of the love of God for us. It tells us of the power of prayer,--how the human voice may reach the ear of God, and our petitions find acceptance in the courts of heaven.

The light which fell from the open portals upon the head of our Saviour will fall upon us as we pray for help to resist temptation. The voice which spoke to Jesus says to every believing soul, This is My beloved child, in whom I am well pleased. 

Our Redeemer has opened the way so that the most sinful, the most needy, the most oppressed and despised, may find access to the Father.


Can it get much better than this? That we as sinners can have access not only to our loving and merciful Heavenly Father but that He also would grant us grace and power to resist temptation? Praise be to God!
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: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2016, 06:57:18 AM »
Amen, Jim! What a God we serve!

As I read, I was impressed with this: Speaking of His baptism "Jesus did not receive baptism as a confession of guilt on His own account. He identified Himself with sinners, taking the steps that we are to take, and doing the work that we must do. His life of suffering and patient endurance after His baptism was also an example to us."

A "life of suffering and patient endurance" an example to us?  What does this mean? Yes, we are to be patient, but must we also suffer as Christ suffered? It seems so. But, are we willing to suffer?

Here's a thought. Of all we have studied, who will suffer the most from Adam to the second coming? Yes, Jesus. But, after Him, who will suffer the most? Job suffered a lot. He lost all dear to him except his wife who told him to curse God. He suffered great pain. He was attacked by the leaders in the church and told his theology was wrong. Some were boiled in oil, one sawed in half, and others burned at the stake. Some thrown to the lions, some tortured on the rack. How about us? How have we been treated? There is just before us a time of trouble such as never was. Something to consider.

Here's my thought: After probation closes, all who are saved will be sealed and have such a relationship with Jesus that they will never sin. They know their continual need of Christ, so they cling to Him no matte what. Why not take them to heaven then and there? But, no, God leaves them on this Earth to be attacked and tortured. So, why the suffering? And, why is Jesus an example to us with Him patience and suffering? I fear many have not understood why we continue life here on earth after we are converted. The thief on the cross did not live long after his conversion, but God has other plans for you and me. Are we willing?

If not there yet, consider this. "God never leads His children otherwise than they would choose to be led, if they could see the end from the beginning, and discern the glory of the purpose which they are fulfilling as coworkers with Him. Not Enoch, who was translated to heaven, not Elijah, who ascended in a chariot of fire, was greater or more honored than John the Baptist, who perished alone in the dungeon. "Unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake" (Philippians 1:29). And of all the gifts that Heaven can bestow upon men, fellowship with Christ in His sufferings is the most weighty trust and the  highest honor.  Pg 224.

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: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #11 on: April 29, 2016, 08:01:43 AM »
In reading this chapter again this morning, I am encouraged anew to know a beautiful truth about our Substitute, Jesus: "And the word that was spoken to Jesus at the Jordan, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased," embraces humanity. God spoke to Jesus as our representative. With all our sins and weaknesses, we are not cast aside as worthless. "He hath made us accepted in the Beloved." Ephesians 1:6. The glory that rested upon Christ is a pledge of the love of God for us. It tells us of the power of prayer,--how the human voice may reach the ear of God, and our petitions find acceptance in the courts of heaven. By sin, earth was cut off from heaven, and alienated from its communion; but Jesus has connected it again with the sphere of glory. His love has encircled man, and reached the highest heaven. The light which fell from the open portals upon the head of our Saviour will fall upon us as we pray for help to resist temptation. The voice which spoke to Jesus says to every believing soul, This is My beloved child, in whom I am well pleased."  {DA 113.1}  How can we give way to discouragement when Jesus ever lives to make intercession for us, and has wrought out a perfect robe of righteousness for us whereby, through a full surrender to Him, not only is our past wiped clean, but we are enabled by His saving grace to live a new life--even the life of faith--in which all the fruits of the Spirit will be seen in our lives, and not one will be missing. 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}

Richard Myers

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2016, 08:11:31 AM »
Amen, Sean!

And immediately preceding what you shared is this:

     John recognized the token which God had promised. He knew that it was the world's Redeemer whom he had baptized. The Holy Spirit rested upon him, and with outstretched hand pointing to Jesus, he cried, "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world."
     None among the hearers, and not even the speaker himself, discerned the import of these words, "the Lamb of God." Upon Mount Moriah, Abraham had heard the question of his son, "My father, . . . where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" The father answered, "My son, God will provide Himself a lamb for a burnt offering." Genesis 22:7, 8. And in the ram divinely provided in the place of Isaac, Abraham saw a symbol of Him who was to die for the sins of men. The Holy Spirit through Isaiah, taking up the illustration, prophesied of the Saviour, "He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter," "and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all" (Isaiah 53:7, 6); but the people of Israel had not understood the lesson. Many of them regarded the sacrificial offerings much as the heathen looked upon their sacrifices,--as gifts by which they themselves might propitiate the Deity. God desired to teach them that from His own love comes the gift which reconciles them to Himself. 


He was brought as a lamb to the slaughter. Such love! It is by beholding this love that we come to understand it is by His stripes that we are healed. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us, Pastor Sean. It is a blessing to be pointed to Jesus and His Word.
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: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #13 on: July 25, 2016, 07:26:46 AM »
I appreciated this chapter again today, seeing anew God's love:

"None among the hearers, and not even the speaker himself, discerned the import of these words, "the Lamb of God." Upon Mount Moriah, Abraham had heard the question of his son, "My father, . . . where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" The father answered, "My son, God will provide Himself a lamb for a burnt offering." Genesis 22:7, 8. And in the ram divinely provided in the place of Isaac, Abraham saw a symbol of Him who was to die for the sins of men. The Holy Spirit through Isaiah, taking up the illustration, prophesied of the Saviour, "He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter," "and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all" (Isaiah 53:7, 6); but the people of Israel had not understood the lesson. Many of them regarded the sacrificial offerings much as the heathen looked upon their sacrifices,--as gifts by which they themselves might propitiate the Deity. God desired to teach them that from His own love comes the gift which reconciles them to Himself."  {DA 112.5} 

God draws us by His love--let us behold Him!
"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: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #14 on: July 25, 2016, 10:25:21 PM »
Amen!!

It is by His stripes we are healed of our selfishness. The greatest form of love, is love that is undeserved. We deserve death, but Christ not only died for us while we were yet sinners, He suffered for our sins. These stripes He took, belonged to us. Such love!!
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

JimB

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #15 on: October 20, 2016, 05:21:36 AM »
And the word that was spoken to Jesus at the Jordan, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased," embraces humanity. God spoke to Jesus as our representative. With all our sins and weaknesses, we are not cast aside as worthless. "He hath made us accepted in the Beloved." Ephesians 1:6. The glory that rested upon Christ is a pledge of the love of God for us. It tells us of the power of prayer,--how the human voice may reach the ear of God, and our petitions find acceptance in the courts of heaven. By sin, earth was cut off from heaven, and alienated from its communion; but Jesus has connected it again with the sphere of glory. His love has encircled man, and reached the highest heaven. The light which fell from the open portals upon the head of our Saviour will fall upon us as we pray for help to resist temptation. The voice which spoke to Jesus says to every believing soul, This is My beloved child, in whom I am well pleased.  {DA 113.1}

This I believe is very telling. When we desire victory over sin and pray for it God will send His light to enable us. Indeed! what a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear!
By communion with God in nature, the mind is uplifted, and the heart finds rest.  {DA 291.1}

Pastor Sean Brizendine

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #16 on: October 20, 2016, 06:44:09 AM »
Amen, Jim! What a Savior! He is our strength and song, and in Him we find continual victory through abiding!

I was moved by the thought of the Lamb of God today--and how little it was then understood. May we fully appreciate the sacrifice that has been made for us in Christ!

None among the hearers, and not even the speaker himself, discerned the import of these words, "the Lamb of God." Upon Mount Moriah, Abraham had heard the question of his son, "My father, . . . where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" The father answered, "My son, God will provide Himself a lamb for a burnt offering." Genesis 22:7, 8. And in the ram divinely provided in the place of Isaac, Abraham saw a symbol of Him who was to die for the sins of men. The Holy Spirit through Isaiah, taking up the illustration, prophesied of the Saviour, "He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter," "and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all" (Isaiah 53:7, 6); but the people of Israel had not understood the lesson. Many of them regarded the sacrificial offerings much as the heathen looked upon their sacrifices,--as gifts by which they themselves might propitiate the Deity. God desired to teach them that from His own love comes the gift which reconciles them to Himself.  {DA 112.5} 

This stands out to me in that even John the Baptist did not realize that Jesus, as the Lamb of God, had to die. Could it be that there are errors in our time, that have also clouded the gospel? Could it be that there are those who believe that Jesus' death for them is all-sufficient, without also requiring SELF to die, so that the human instrument is a continually abiding living sacrifice to the glory and honor of God? Whatever the false gospels that abound, we find in the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy, clearly studied and rightly divided, the gospel that is "everlasting"--from Genesis to Revelation it is consistent. Sin reveals a separation between God and man, and it was because of sin that Jesus consented to come and die as our sacrifice, to be born in this world and to be baptized, taking the steps we are to take in being reconciled to God. Thank God for Jesus, and the transformation that ensues in our lives when we FULLY SURRENDER to Him!
"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: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #17 on: October 20, 2016, 06:50:44 AM »
Amen! And when we tie your quoted material with the quoted material Jim has posted, what do we see?  Could it be that simple? Yes, it is that simple. Of course the prayer has be heartfelt. How do we come to the point of such a whole heart prayer is the most important question we can ask and answer. Maybe the answer is found in both of the events spoken of? John the Baptist's statement will give us light. And, Abraham's great trial reveals the answer. And, when Jesus told Nicodemus he needed to be converted, He would not keep this from him. There must be a clear, very clear statement in the Bible, and the Spirit of Prophecy. And since there is, why do we not have many more here with us?

     None among the hearers, and not even the speaker himself, discerned the import of these words, "the Lamb of God." Upon Mount Moriah, Abraham had heard the question of his son, "My father, . . . where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" The father answered, "My son, God will provide Himself a lamb for a burnt offering." Genesis 22:7, 8. And in the ram divinely provided in the place of Isaac, Abraham saw a symbol of Him who was to die for the sins of men. The Holy Spirit through Isaiah, taking up the illustration, prophesied of the Saviour, "He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter," "and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all" (Isaiah 53:7, 6); but the people of Israel had not understood the lesson.


Why did not John understand that Jesus was the Lamb that had to die? Why did the mother of Jesus and His disciples not understand Jesus was the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world? Do we understand how a man is saved? What must we do to be saved? Some teach "nothing", God does it all. Others say we do not have to obey God, for that would be Phariseeism.

Why do so many today not understand what John meant when he said "behold, the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world"? Because the church remains in a Laodicean condition and many have no spiritual discernment. Many pastors are as the blind leading the blind. They have been burying people alive, many never died to self and sin. They do not believe Christ suffered and died to take away our sins, to cleanse our hearts from sin.

If we believe the Romans seven experience is the converted Christian's experience, that we do what we ought not do and we don't do what we ought to do, then we do indeed believe we are rich and increased with goods and in need of nothing, not knowing as a people we are wretched, miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.

On the other hand, if we discover we can do no good thing, and realize we are under condemnation when sinning a known sin, then if we pray earnestly for power to overcome temptation, then the light which fell upon Christ will fall upon us and we will be given power to overcome. "The light which fell from the open portals upon the head of our Saviour will fall upon us as we pray for help to resist temptation."
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Richard Myers

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Re: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #18 on: January 15, 2017, 08:47:13 AM »
Jesus took upon Himself our fallen nature. But, He was sinless. He was the only sinless One.  He was God in the flesh. There is a mystery here that we cannot fathom. How can God be human? We accept this truth without understanding how it can be. How can Jesus be pure and holy, sinless, yet have our fallen nature?

How can fallen man become pure and holy? How can a repentant sinner be cleansed from sin? Having sinful flesh does not block holiness. It is the heart and mind that may be holy and undefiled. It is the heart that is renewed at conversion. It is the carnal heart and mind that are transformed. It is when we are converted that we become partakers of God's divine nature. Christ had two natures, so we may have two natures when the Holy Spirit takes possession of the heart and mind.

Notwithstanding that the sins of a guilty world were laid upon Christ, notwithstanding the humiliation of taking upon Himself our fallen nature, the voice from heaven declared Him to be the Son of the Eternal. 


As Christ turned to His Father for strength to overcome, so we may obtain power by beholding Christ uplifted upon the cross that our sins might be washed away.

    The Holy Spirit through Isaiah, taking up the illustration, prophesied of the Saviour, "He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter," "and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all" (Isaiah 53:7, 6); but the people of Israel had not understood the lesson. Many of them regarded the sacrificial offerings much as the heathen looked upon their sacrifices,--as gifts by which they themselves might propitiate the Deity. God desired to teach them that from His own love comes the gift which reconciles them to Himself.   
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: The Desire of Ages--11--The Baptism
« Reply #19 on: January 15, 2017, 01:57:50 PM »
Amen, Richard! Jesus' incarnation and baptism reveal deep spiritual truths to us--and invite us to have saving faith in Him!!

     And the word that was spoken to Jesus at the Jordan, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased," embraces humanity. God spoke to Jesus as our representative. With all our sins and weaknesses, we are not cast aside as worthless. "He hath made us accepted in the Beloved." Ephesians 1:6. The glory that rested upon Christ is a pledge of the love of God for us. It tells us of the power of prayer,--how the human voice may reach the ear of God, and our petitions find acceptance in the courts of heaven. By sin, earth was cut off from heaven, and alienated from its communion; but Jesus has connected it again with the sphere of glory. His love has encircled man, and reached the highest heaven. The light which fell from the open portals upon the head of our Saviour will fall upon us as we pray for help to resist temptation. The voice which spoke to Jesus says to every believing soul, This is My beloved child, in whom I am well pleased.

To every believing soul (fully surrendered, converted, bearing the fruits of the Spirit so that not one is missing), the joy of knowing Jesus is our Saviour and Example means it is possible through the divine nature to live a holy life!
"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}