Author Topic: The Desire of Ages--68--In the Outer Court  (Read 10837 times)

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Richard Myers

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The Desire of Ages--68--In the Outer Court
« on: March 25, 2016, 06:30:09 AM »
In the Outer Court


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     "And there were certain Greeks among them that came up to worship at the feast: the same came therefore to Philip, which was of Bethsaida of Galilee, and desired him, saying, Sir, we would see Jesus. Philip cometh and telleth Andrew: and again Andrew and Philip tell Jesus."   
     At this time Christ's work bore the appearance of cruel defeat. He had been victor in the controversy with the priests and Pharisees, but it was evident that He would never be received by them as the Messiah. The final separation had come. To His disciples the case seemed hopeless. But Christ was approaching the consummation of His work. The great event which concerned not only the Jewish nation, but the whole world, was about to take place. When Christ heard the eager request, "We would see Jesus," echoing the hungering cry of the world, His countenance lighted up, and He said, "The hour is come, that the Son of man should be glorified." In the request of the Greeks He saw an earnest of the results of His great sacrifice.
     These men came from the West to find the Saviour at the close of His life, as the wise men had come from the East at the beginning. At the time of Christ's birth the Jewish people were so engrossed with their own ambitious plans that they knew not of His advent. The magi from a heathen land came to the manger with their gifts, to worship the Saviour. So these Greeks, representing the nations, tribes, and peoples of the world, came to see Jesus. So the people of all lands and all ages would be drawn by the Saviour's cross. So shall many "come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven." Matthew 8:11. 
     The Greeks had heard of Christ's triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Some supposed, and had circulated the report, that He had driven the priests and rulers from the temple, and that He was to take possession of David's throne, and reign as king of Israel. The Greeks longed to know the truth in regard to His mission. "We would see Jesus," they said. Their desire was granted. When the request was brought to Jesus, He was in that part of the temple from which all except Jews were excluded, but He went out to the Greeks in the outer court, and had a personal interview with them. 
     The hour of Christ's glorification had come. He was standing in the shadow of the cross, and the inquiry of the Greeks showed Him that the sacrifice He was about to make would bring many sons and daughters to God. He knew that the Greeks would soon see Him in a position they did not then dream of. They would see Him placed beside Barabbas, a robber and murderer, who would be chosen for release before the Son of God. They would hear the people, inspired by the priests and rulers, making their choice. And to the question, "What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ?" the answer would be given, "Let Him be crucified." Matthew 27:22. By making this propitiation for the sins of men, Christ knew that His kingdom would be perfected, and would extend throughout the world. He would work as the Restorer, and His Spirit would prevail. For a moment He looked into futurity, and heard the voices proclaiming in all parts of the earth, "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." John 1:29. In these strangers He saw the pledge of a great harvest, when the partition wall between Jew and Gentile should be broken down, and all nations, tongues, and peoples should hear the message of salvation. The anticipation of this, the consummation of His hopes, is expressed in the words, "The hour is come, that the Son of man should be glorified." But the way in which this glorification must take place was never absent from Christ's mind. The gathering in of the Gentiles was to follow His approaching death. Only by His death could the world be saved. Like a grain of wheat, the Son of man must be cast into the ground and die, and be buried out of sight; but He was to live again.
     Christ presented His future, illustrating it by the things of nature, that the disciples might understand. The true result of His mission was to be reached by His death. "Verily, verily, I say unto you," He said, "Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit." When the grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it springs up, and bears fruit. So the death of Christ would result in fruit for the kingdom of God. In accordance with the law of the vegetable kingdom, life was to be the result of His death. 
     Those who till the soil have the illustration ever before them. Year by year man preserves his supply of grain by apparently throwing away the choicest part. For a time it must be hidden under the furrow, to be watched over by the Lord. Then appears the blade, then the ear, and then the corn in the ear. But this development cannot take place unless the grain is buried out of sight, hidden, and to all appearance, lost. 
     The seed buried in the ground produces fruit, and in turn this is planted. Thus the harvest is multiplied. So the death of Christ on the cross of Calvary will bear fruit unto eternal life. The contemplation of this sacrifice will be the glory of those who, as the fruit of it, will live through the eternal ages. 
     The grain of wheat that preserves its own life can produce no fruit. It abides alone. Christ could, if He chose, save Himself from death. But should He do this, He must abide alone. He could bring no sons and daughters to God. Only by yielding up His life could He impart life to humanity. Only by falling into the ground to die could He become the seed of that vast harvest,--the great multitude that out of every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, are redeemed to God.
     With this truth Christ connects the lesson of self-sacrifice that all should learn: "He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal." All who would bring forth fruit as workers together with Christ must first fall into the ground and die. The life must be cast into the furrow of the world's need. Self-love, self-interest, must perish. And the law of self-sacrifice is the law of self-preservation. The husbandman preserves his grain by casting it away. So in human life. To give is to live. The life that will be preserved is the life that is freely given in service to God and man. Those who for Christ's sake sacrifice their life in this world will keep it unto life eternal. 
     The life spent on self is like the grain that is eaten. It disappears, but there is no increase. A man may gather all he can for self; he may live and think and plan for self; but his life passes away, and he has nothing. The law of self-serving is the law of self-destruction. 
     "If any man serve Me," said Jesus, "let him follow Me; and where I am, there shall also My servant be: if any man serve Me, him will My Father honor." All who have borne with Jesus the cross of sacrifice will be sharers with Him of His glory. It was the joy of Christ in His humiliation and pain that His disciples should be glorified with Him. They are the fruit of His self-sacrifice. The outworking in them of His own character and spirit is His reward, and will be His joy throughout eternity. This joy they share with Him as the fruit of their labor and sacrifice is seen in other hearts and lives. They are workers together with Christ, and the Father will honor them as He honors His Son. 
     The message of the Greeks, foreshadowing as it did the gathering in of the Gentiles, brought to the mind of Jesus His entire mission. The work of redemption passed before Him, from the time when in heaven the plan was laid, to the death that was now so near at hand. A mysterious cloud seemed to enshroud the Son of God. Its gloom was felt by those near Him. He sat rapt in thought. At last the silence was broken by His mournful voice, "Now is My soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save Me from this hour?" In anticipation Christ was already drinking the cup of bitterness. His humanity shrank from the hour of abandonment, when to all appearance He would be deserted even by God, when all would see Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. He shrank from public exposure, from being treated as the worst of criminals, from a shameful and dishonored death. A foreboding of His conflict with the powers of darkness, a sense of the awful burden of human transgression, and the Father's wrath because of sin caused the spirit of Jesus to faint, and the pallor of death to overspread His countenance. 
     Then came divine submission to His Father's will. "For this cause," He said, "came I unto this hour. Father, glorify Thy name." Only through the death of Christ could Satan's kingdom be overthrown. Only thus could man be redeemed, and God be glorified. Jesus consented to the agony, He accepted the sacrifice. The Majesty of heaven consented to suffer as the Sin Bearer. "Father, glorify Thy name," He said. As Christ spoke these words, a response came from the cloud which hovered above His head: "I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again." Christ's whole life, from the manger to the time when these words were spoken, had glorified God; and in the coming trial His divine-human sufferings would indeed glorify His Father's name.   
     As the voice was heard, a light darted from the cloud, and encircled Christ, as if the arms of Infinite Power were thrown about Him like a wall of fire. The people beheld this scene with terror and amazement. No one dared to speak. With silent lips and bated breath all stood with eyes fixed upon Jesus. The testimony of the Father having been given, the cloud lifted, and scattered in the heavens. For the time the visible communion between the Father and the Son was ended. 
     "The people therefore, that stood by, and heard it, said that it thundered: others said, An angel spake to Him." But the inquiring Greeks saw the cloud, heard the voice, comprehended its meaning, and discerned Christ indeed; to them He was revealed as the Sent of God. 
     The voice of God had been heard at the baptism of Jesus at the beginning of His ministry, and again at His transfiguration on the mount. Now at the close of His ministry it was heard for the third time, by a larger number of persons, and under peculiar circumstances. Jesus had just spoken the most solemn truth regarding the condition of the Jews. He had made His last appeal, and pronounced their doom. Now God again set His seal to the mission of His Son. He recognized the One whom Israel had rejected. "This voice came not because of Me," said Jesus, "but for your sakes." It was the crowning evidence of His Messiahship, the signal from the Father that Jesus had spoken the truth, and was the Son of God. 
     "Now is the judgment of this world," Christ continued; "now shall the prince of this world be cast out. And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all unto Me. This He said, signifying what death He should die." This is the crisis of the world. If I become the propitiation for the sins of men, the world will be lighted up. Satan's hold upon the souls of men will be broken. The defaced image of God will be restored in humanity, and a family of believing saints will finally inherit the heavenly home. This is the result of Christ's death. The Saviour is lost in contemplation of the scene of triumph called up before Him. He sees the cross, the cruel, ignominious cross, with all its attending horrors, blazing with glory.
     But the work of human redemption is not all that is accomplished by the cross. The love of God is manifested to the universe. The prince of this world is cast out. The accusations which Satan has brought against God are refuted. The reproach which he has cast upon heaven is forever removed. Angels as well as men are drawn to the Redeemer. "I, if I be lifted up from the earth," He said, "will draw all unto Me." 
     Many people were round about Christ as He spoke these words, and one said, "We have heard out of the law that Christ abideth forever: and how sayest Thou, The Son of man must be lifted up? who is this Son of man? Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth. While ye have light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children of light."
     "But though He had done so many miracles before them, yet they believed not on Him." They had once asked the Saviour, "What sign showest Thou then, that we may see, and believe Thee?" John 6:30. Innumerable signs had been given; but they had closed their eyes and hardened their hearts. Now that the Father Himself had spoken, and they could ask for no further sign, they still refused to believe. 
     "Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on Him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue." They loved the praise of men rather than the approval of God. To save themselves from reproach and shame, they denied Christ, and rejected the offer of eternal life. And how many through all the centuries since have been doing the same thing! To them all the Saviour's warning words apply: "He that loveth his life shall lose it." "He that rejecteth Me," said Jesus, "and receiveth not My words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day." John 12:48.   
     Alas for those who knew not the time of their visitation! Slowly and regretfully Christ left forever the precincts of the temple. 
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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2016, 09:42:05 AM »
What inspired Jesus to suffer and die for the sins of the world? Would you like to please Jesus today? Can we do something that will please Him for eternity?

"If any man serve Me," said Jesus, "let him follow Me; and where I am, there shall also My servant be: if any man serve Me, him will My Father honor." All who have borne with Jesus the cross of sacrifice will be sharers with Him of His glory. It was the joy of Christ in His humiliation and pain that His disciples should be glorified with Him. They are the fruit of His self-sacrifice. The outworking in them of His own character and spirit is His reward, and will be His joy throughout eternity. This joy they share with Him as the fruit of their labor and sacrifice is seen in other hearts and lives. They are workers together with Christ, and the Father will honor them as He honors His Son. 

We can know if we are living for others. And, others can see when there has been a radical transformation of nature (character).
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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #2 on: June 25, 2016, 06:40:03 AM »
What a joy to bring joy to Jesus as we participate in the experience of true character building for eternity!

I appreciate this beautiful thought, and look forward to preaching this morning about the message in John 12 upon which this chapter is based:

Then came divine submission to His Father's will. "For this cause," He said, "came I unto this hour. Father, glorify Thy name." Only through the death of Christ could Satan's kingdom be overthrown. Only thus could man be redeemed, and God be glorified. Jesus consented to the agony, He accepted the sacrifice. The Majesty of heaven consented to suffer as the Sin Bearer. "Father, glorify Thy name," He said. As Christ spoke these words, a response came from the cloud which hovered above His head: "I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again." Christ's whole life, from the manger to the time when these words were spoken, had glorified God; and in the coming trial His divine-human sufferings would indeed glorify His Father's name.   

May we more fully appreciate all Jesus is to us, and all He is doing for our redemption!
"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: The Desire of Ages--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2016, 04:07:56 AM »
"Now is the judgment of this world," Christ continued; "now shall the prince of this world be cast out. And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all unto Me. This He said, signifying what death He should die." This is the crisis of the world. If I become the propitiation for the sins of men, the world will be lighted up. Satan's hold upon the souls of men will be broken. The defaced image of God will be restored in humanity, and a family of believing saints will finally inherit the heavenly home. This is the result of Christ's death. The Saviour is lost in contemplation of the scene of triumph called up before Him. He sees the cross, the cruel, ignominious cross, with all its attending horrors, blazing with glory.
     But the work of human redemption is not all that is accomplished by the cross. The love of God is manifested to the universe. The prince of this world is cast out. The accusations which Satan has brought against God are refuted. The reproach which he has cast upon heaven is forever removed. Angels as well as men are drawn to the Redeemer. "I, if I be lifted up from the earth," He said, "will draw all unto Me." 


If Christ is lifted up before men they will be drawn, this is what we are told and I believe it!! This reminds me of Paul's statement...

1 Corinthians 2:1-2
(1)  And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.
(2)  For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

So what did Paul teach and preach? Jesus Christ and Him crucified. No wonder we are counseled to read about His life and especially the closing scenes of His life. Such wondrous love is hard to ignore!
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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2016, 01:14:35 PM »
Amen, Jim! Afresh I appreciated the revelation of Jesus in this chapter!
"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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2016, 07:18:09 PM »
Amen!  I most especially was moved by what Jesus saw looking forward just before the cross. It was His joy to know what His sacrifice would mean for sinful humanity and the unfallen universe.

Jim, Pastor Sean, and I are encouraging all to spend some time each morning contemplating the life of Christ. We know for a fact that we shall be successful. How do we know? Listen to the Words of Jesus in this morning's reading:

    The hour of Christ's glorification had come. He was standing in the shadow of the cross, and the inquiry of the Greeks showed Him that the sacrifice He was about to make would bring many sons and daughters to God. He knew that the Greeks would soon see Him in a position they did not then dream of. They would see Him placed beside Barabbas, a robber and murderer, who would be chosen for release before the Son of God. They would hear the people, inspired by the priests and rulers, making their choice. And to the question, "What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ?" the answer would be given, "Let Him be crucified." Matthew 27:22. By making this propitiation for the sins of men, Christ knew that His kingdom would be perfected, and would extend throughout the world. He would work as the Restorer, and His Spirit would prevail."

All who give their hearts fully to Christ will repeat what we are saying today. They know of their dependence upon Christ and they not only desire to spend time with Him, but they know it is by beholding Him that we are changed into His image day by day. So, Christ affirms our understanding and our great desire to encourage all to behold the loveliness of Jesus.

     For a moment He looked into futurity, and heard the voices proclaiming in all parts of the earth, "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world."

He not only heard our voices, but all who gather with us in proclaiming "Behold the Lamb of God"!!! Yes, from all parts of the Earth Jesus heard our voices pointing all to our Lord and Savior! Come let us press together in lifting up Jesus Christ, that all might "look and live."

     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. 
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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #6 on: December 16, 2016, 05:42:00 AM »
Amen, Richard!

I was moved by the simplicity and power in the loveliness of Jesus found in this paragraph today:

The seed buried in the ground produces fruit, and in turn this is planted. Thus the harvest is multiplied. So the death of Christ on the cross of Calvary will bear fruit unto eternal life. The contemplation of this sacrifice will be the glory of those who, as the fruit of it, will live through the eternal ages. 

When Moses asked God to show him His glory, the Lord proclaimed His name--His character. As I thought upon this statement, it became clear that the glory (character) of the redeemed will be in complete harmony with the very principle of Christ's life--the cross! The redeemed delight in the self-sacrifice of God in Christ revealed at the cross, and they reveal that same character to the world and the onlooking universe! This is a great miracle of grace, and it testifies in the great controversy that it is possible for fallen humanity, redeemed by partaking of the divine nature, to also glory in the cross! And we will get to do this for eternity! Let us begin today, and encourage others to join us in this glory!
"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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #7 on: December 16, 2016, 11:00:00 AM »
Amen, Pastor Sean.  God's glory is everything to us. His glory was indeed revealed on the cross. Then, how is His glory to be seen in repentant sinners, who have died to self?

     All who have borne with Jesus the cross of sacrifice will be sharers with Him of His glory. It was the joy of Christ in His humiliation and pain that His disciples should be glorified with Him. They are the fruit of His self-sacrifice. The outworking in them of His own character and spirit is His reward, and will be His joy throughout eternity. This joy they share with Him as the fruit of their labor and sacrifice is seen in other hearts and lives. They are workers together with Christ, and the Father will honor them as He honors His Son. 

What a privilege! What an honor!



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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #8 on: December 16, 2016, 02:09:40 PM »
I love Jesus. I love how through the day by the Holy Spirit He was impressing that very thought upon my mind that you shared as well, Richard. We get to be Jesus reward! What a privilege! What a joy! Oh, loving Savior, that we get to be part of His eternal family! Hallelujah!

Happy Sabbath, and God bless you all who look to Jesus!
"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: The Desire of Ages--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2017, 05:14:22 AM »
I just love this beautiful revelation of Jesus that we see in our reading today! I was reflecting on how the whole universe is watching the development of Christ's character in our lives as we morning by morning spend this "thoughful hour" with Jesus. Maybe we could call it the "Univision"--the very greatest interest of all the heavenly beings, the unfallen worlds--as they see all that Christ's sacrifice will accomplish both for us and them! Praise the Lord that Jesus went all the way to the cross!!!

 But the work of human redemption is not all that is accomplished by the cross. The love of God is manifested to the universe. The prince of this world is cast out. The accusations which Satan has brought against God are refuted. The reproach which he has cast upon heaven is forever removed. Angels as well as men are drawn to the Redeemer. "I, if I be lifted up from the earth," He said, "will draw all unto Me." 

May we joyfully, willingly take up our cross today--wherever the Savior leads the way!
"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: The Desire of Ages--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2017, 05:22:57 AM »
Pastor Sean, I like what you've pointed out. I remember reading for the first time that a while back that even the angels need the cross to keep them safe until this is all over. The universe will never again have to be nervous about affliction rising a second time. Then we can sit at the feet of Jesus and learn from Him directly for the rest of eternity. What a thought! What love!
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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2017, 09:30:27 AM »
Amen!  And Seventh-day Adventists have been entrusted with this truth. The world is in great need to know why it is that God continues to allow evil to exist. If only they understood, the character of God would be revealed.

It is a hard lesson to learn for selfish fallen man, but the way of heaven is a way of self sacrifice. Not so here on this earth, except for those who have died to self.

     "He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal." All who would bring forth fruit as workers together with Christ must first fall into the ground and die. The life must be cast into the furrow of the world's need. Self-love, self-interest, must perish. And the law of self-sacrifice is the law of self-preservation. The husbandman preserves his grain by casting it away. So in human life. To give is to live. The life that will be preserved is the life that is freely given in service to God and man. Those who for Christ's sake sacrifice their life in this world will keep it unto life eternal.
     The life spent on self is like the grain that is eaten. It disappears, but there is no increase. A man may gather all he can for self; he may live and think and plan for self; but his life passes away, and he has nothing. The law of self-serving is the law of self-destruction. 


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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #12 on: June 08, 2017, 04:27:22 AM »
I am so thankful that Jesus consented to become the sacrifice for sin that I may experience His character in my life. What an infinite gift! Thank you, Abba Father, for giving Your Son to die for us! I praise God for Jesus who has made a way for us to "see" and know Him, and to be drawn by His uplifted cross to realize the blessing of selflessness by the power of the Holy Sprit!

"If any man serve Me," said Jesus, "let him follow Me; and where I am, there shall also My servant be: if any man serve Me, him will My Father honor." All who have borne with Jesus the cross of sacrifice will be sharers with Him of His glory. It was the joy of Christ in His humiliation and pain that His disciples should be glorified with Him. They are the fruit of His self-sacrifice. The outworking in them of His own character and spirit is His reward, and will be His joy throughout eternity. This joy they share with Him as the fruit of their labor and sacrifice is seen in other hearts and lives. They are workers together with Christ, and the Father will honor them as He honors His Son. 
     The message of the Greeks, foreshadowing as it did the gathering in of the Gentiles, brought to the mind of Jesus His entire mission. The work of redemption passed before Him, from the time when in heaven the plan was laid, to the death that was now so near at hand. A mysterious cloud seemed to enshroud the Son of God. Its gloom was felt by those near Him. He sat rapt in thought. At last the silence was broken by His mournful voice, "Now is My soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save Me from this hour?" In anticipation Christ was already drinking the cup of bitterness. His humanity shrank from the hour of abandonment, when to all appearance He would be deserted even by God, when all would see Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. He shrank from public exposure, from being treated as the worst of criminals, from a shameful and dishonored death. A foreboding of His conflict with the powers of darkness, a sense of the awful burden of human transgression, and the Father's wrath because of sin caused the spirit of Jesus to faint, and the pallor of death to overspread His countenance.


The agony of the cross was the cost of our redemption. If the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit considered the cost worth it, will we not choose to consider the cost of laying down our lives (whatever we have and are) to be poured out in the doing of God's will? What are we really giving up? A sin-polluted heart for Jesus to purify--but He has something vastly better than we would choose for ourselves--look to Jesus and live!!!
"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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #13 on: June 08, 2017, 06:38:56 AM »
Amen Pastor Sean. What a self sacrificing God we serve!! A God of unsurpassed love and perfect justice. How can we resist such love! If only we would spend a thoughtful hour a day contemplating it, then we would know Him. We ought to fear God if we understand the result of rejecting His love. We will be judged by how we respond to it. "The word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day." John 12:48.   

    "Now is the judgment of this world," Christ continued; "now shall the prince of this world be cast out. And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all unto Me. This He said, signifying what death He should die." This is the crisis of the world. If I become the propitiation for the sins of men, the world will be lighted up. Satan's hold upon the souls of men will be broken. The defaced image of God will be restored in humanity, and a family of believing saints will finally inherit the heavenly home. This is the result of Christ's death. The Saviour is lost in contemplation of the scene of triumph called up before Him. He sees the cross, the cruel, ignominious cross, with all its attending horrors, blazing with glory.


Now we understand why the cross blazes with glory, and why it is that it draws all men to it. We see our Savior's love for us in a most profound way. He sacrificed all that we might live. Yes, Pastor Sean, if we would look upon Jesus hanging on the cross, if would remember that it is by these stripes that we are healed (transformed in character), then we would be changed into His image by the Spirit (2 Cor. 3:18). It is an intellectual and a spiritual truth that by beholding we become changed. Our Savior saw both the horrors of the cross and the glory of His Father. Yes, if they saw the glory of self sacrificing love, then we ought to also. Let us glory in our tribulations, for they will work for our good and His glory as we abide in Christ.
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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #14 on: September 03, 2017, 07:17:24 AM »
Amen, Richard! When we behold Jesus and realize the beauty of His character at the cross, we ARE CHANGED from glory to glory, from character to character, and we are left in this world to encourage others to know that such a Savior lives IN US who has delivered us from the power of the flesh to give us His selfless love that has made our hearts new, pure, and holy by a divine miracle of grace!

The grain of wheat that preserves its own life can produce no fruit. It abides alone. Christ could, if He chose, save Himself from death. But should He do this, He must abide alone. He could bring no sons and daughters to God. Only by yielding up His life could He impart life to humanity. Only by falling into the ground to die could He become the seed of that vast harvest,--the great multitude that out of every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, are redeemed to God. {The Desire of Ages, page 623, paragraph 4}
     With this truth Christ connects the lesson of self-sacrifice that all should learn: "He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal." All who would bring forth fruit as workers together with Christ must first fall into the ground and die. The life must be cast into the furrow of the world's need. Self-love, self-interest, must perish. And the law of self-sacrifice is the law of self-preservation. The husbandman preserves his grain by casting it away. So in human life. To give is to live. The life that will be preserved is the life that is freely given in service to God and man. Those who for Christ's sake sacrifice their life in this world will keep it unto life eternal.  {The Desire of Ages, page 623, paragraph 5}
"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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #15 on: September 03, 2017, 09:39:22 AM »
Amen, Pastor Sean.   It is contrary to our fallen nature to understand this basic truth. The seed must be buried in order to produce fruit. It is only the carnal heart of man that does not take to give. The great news is that we may have a new heart that will take to give. It is indeed more blessed to give than to receive. This can only be understood when we know we have a God that loves us and gave Himself for us. He is omnipotent and will provide for us all that is good for us, all that we need in order to be transformed and glorified. One day soon we shall be past this evil world and our selfish evil nature. Until then, we may become partakers of God's divine nature which imparts power to keep the evil within under, even as Paul did. "I keep under my body, and bring [it] into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway." 1 Cor. 9:27.

"He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal." All who would bring forth fruit as workers together with Christ must first fall into the ground and die. The life must be cast into the furrow of the world's need. Self-love, self-interest, must perish. And the law of self-sacrifice is the law of self-preservation. The husbandman preserves his grain by casting it away. So in human life. To give is to live. The life that will be preserved is the life that is freely given in service to God and man. Those who for Christ's sake sacrifice their life in this world will keep it unto life eternal.
     The life spent on self is like the grain that is eaten. It disappears, but there is no increase. A man may gather all he can for self; he may live and think and plan for self; but his life passes away, and he has nothing. The law of self-serving is the law of self-destruction.
     "If any man serve Me," said Jesus, "let him follow Me; and where I am, there shall also My servant be: if any man serve Me, him will My Father honor." All who have borne with Jesus the cross of sacrifice will be sharers with Him of His glory. It was the joy of Christ in His humiliation and pain that His disciples should be glorified with Him. They are the fruit of His self-sacrifice. The outworking in them of His own character and spirit is His reward, and will be His joy throughout eternity. This joy they share with Him as the fruit of their labor and sacrifice is seen in other hearts and lives. They are workers together with Christ, and the Father will honor them as He honors His Son. 
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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #16 on: November 29, 2017, 02:24:25 AM »
Amen, brother Richard! We receive Christ that we may impart of His love to others. It is truly more blessed to give than to receive. When we have a converted heart and mind, one that is renewed by divine grace and made partaker of the divine nature (2 Peter 1:4) so we have the mind of Christ (Philippians 2:5), then we can rejoice in beholding Christ so we can share what we have learned of Him with others!

I loved reading today from John's gospel in my precious "power time" with Jesus:

John 12:27-33:
27 Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour.
28 Father, glorify thy name. Then came there a voice from heaven, saying, I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again.
29 The people therefore, that stood by, and heard it, said that it thundered: others said, An angel spake to him.
30 Jesus answered and said, This voice came not because of me, but for your sakes.
31 Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.
32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.
33 This he said, signifying what death he should die.

What was the significance of this voice? It was a standing witness of Christ's divinity attested by the Father Himself. God Had spoken now three times--and to reject Christ was to choose to close one's eyes to the light and life that brings salvation.

    "The voice of God had been heard at the baptism of Jesus at the beginning of His ministry, and again at His transfiguration on the mount. Now at the close of His ministry it was heard for the third time, by a larger number of persons, and under peculiar circumstances. Jesus had just spoken the most solemn truth regarding the condition of the Jews. He had made His last appeal, and pronounced their doom. Now God again set His seal to the mission of His Son. He recognized the One whom Israel had rejected. "This voice came not because of Me," said Jesus, "but for your sakes." It was the crowning evidence of His Messiahship, the signal from the Father that Jesus had spoken the truth, and was the Son of God. {The Desire of Ages, page 625, paragraph 3}

It is also encouraging to note that if someone wanted to discern the significance of this supernatural event, they would be enabled to, as we see in the previous paragraph:

"The people therefore, that stood by, and heard it, said that it thundered: others said, An angel spake to Him." But the inquiring Greeks saw the cloud, heard the voice, comprehended its meaning, and discerned Christ indeed; to them He was revealed as the Sent of God. {The Desire of Ages, page 625, paragraph 2}

If we will open our hearts to Jesus, He will prepare us for greater and greater revelations of His love and truth, even preparing us for the glory of His second coming!

While I was praying at the family altar, the Holy Ghost fell upon me, and I seemed to be rising higher and higher, far above the dark world. I turned to look for the Advent people in the world, but could not find them, when a voice said to me, "Look again, and look a little higher." At this I raised my eyes, and saw a straight and narrow path, cast up high above the world. On this path the Advent people were traveling to the city, which was at the farther end of the path. They had a bright light set up behind them at the beginning of the path, which an angel told me was the midnight cry. This light shone all along the path and gave light for their feet so that they might not stumble. If they kept their eyes fixed on Jesus, who was just before them, leading them to the city, they were safe. But soon some grew weary, and said the city was a great way off, and they expected to have entered it before. Then Jesus would encourage them by raising His glorious right arm, and from His arm came a light which waved over the Advent band, and they shouted, "Alleluia!" Others rashly denied the light behind them and said that it was not God that had led them out so far. The light behind them went out, leaving their feet in perfect darkness, and they stumbled and lost sight of the mark and of Jesus, and fell off the path down into the dark and wicked world below. Soon we heard the voice of God like many waters, which gave us the day and hour of Jesus' coming. The living saints, 144,000 in number, knew and understood the voice, while the wicked thought it was thunder and an earthquake. When God spoke the time, He poured upon us the Holy Ghost, and our faces began to light up and shine with the glory of God, as Moses' did when he came down from Mount Sinai. {Early Writings, page 14, paragraph 1}

My mind was drawn to this truth today because what was misunderstood by those who were filled with unbelief WAS understood by God's sincere people who were following the light. The parallel is striking. It was the Greeks that understood the voice of God at the end of Jesus' ministry; and so the 144,000 will be composed of many from all different parts of the world who have consistently followed the light of truth so that they are perfectly united, holy, and happy--and heaven is their home. On the converse, the wicked at the end of time are like the Jews, even plotting to put the Son of God to death on the cross. We will either be ripening in character to be sealed as a holy saint, or we will be hardening under the light revealing God's glory, preparing to be lost. Let us choose Jesus and the infinite love He has for us today--that our hearts and minds may be experientially transformed to have all of the fruits of the Spirit in our lives without one missing. With such an experience, we will be daily abiding in Christ, and the perfection of character beginning the experience of our walk with God (as long as we maintain a full surrender to Jesus and walk in the light as He reveals it) will prepare us to be translated to heaven without seeing death or, if we should die before He returns in glory, to be ready for the resurrection morning to meet Him in peace. What a glorious inheritance awaits us! What a joy to behold Jesus today!!!
"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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #17 on: November 29, 2017, 05:57:25 AM »
Amen Pastor Sean. What an amazing truth, that one could hear the voice of God speaking from heaven, and out of fear for how they will be seen, refuse to acknowledge Christ! So it is today, many believe, but refuse to stand up for the truth for fear that they will suffer terrible consequences in the church. We need to be careful to not judge others in this respect. We do not know the heart nor the motive of why one remains quiet. It may be That God would have us be as wise as a serpent and as harmless as a dove. But, to remain quiet when the Spirit is urging us to speak, is cowardice. Perfect love casteth out all fear. We have nothing to fear when we are walking in the light and following our savior. If God be for us, who can be against us!
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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #18 on: February 24, 2018, 03:38:36 AM »
Jesus, lifted up on the cross, clearly reveals the character of God before the universe. By beholding the infinite love of God manifest in giving His Son to die for us, in beholding Jesus' incredible sufferings on account of Sin, and by allowing the Holy Spirit to transform our hearts as we surrender to the God who reveals His goodness to us thus, we will truly be converted and enabled to bear fruit to the glory of God. We will experience the power of His grace (His character) at work in us, whereby all of the fruits of the Spirit are seen in our lives--not one will be missing. We shall gladly go where the Lord sends us, gladly speak the words He puts in our mouths, for we have seen the cost of our salvation, and we appreciate the love of God! Through union and communion with God on account of the cross, and a continual appreciation of Christ's character, sin is seen in all its hideousness, and we hate it for its inherent baseness. We love God because He first loved us, and we manifest that love to all, even as did Jesus! What grace! What love!!!

     "'Now is the judgment of this world,' Christ continued; 'now shall the prince of this world be cast out. And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all unto Me. This He said, signifying what death He should die.' This is the crisis of the world. If I become the propitiation for the sins of men, the world will be lighted up. Satan's hold upon the souls of men will be broken. The defaced image of God will be restored in humanity, and a family of believing saints will finally inherit the heavenly home. This is the result of Christ's death. The Saviour is lost in contemplation of the scene of triumph called up before Him. He sees the cross, the cruel, ignominious cross, with all its attending horrors, blazing with glory." {The Desire of Ages, page 625, paragraph 4}
"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--68--In the Outer Court
« Reply #19 on: February 24, 2018, 09:19:33 AM »
Amen, Pastor Sean!  What a glorious truth! The sacrifice of Christ will lead to victory in the great controversy between good and evil. The character of God will be seen, and He will draw "all" unto Himself. This includes all of His creatures, not just the inhabitants of this Earth. There will be a permanent end to sin.

     "If any man serve Me," said Jesus, "let him follow Me; and where I am, there shall also My servant be: if any man serve Me, him will My Father honor." All who have borne with Jesus the cross of sacrifice will be sharers with Him of His glory. It was the joy of Christ in His humiliation and pain that His disciples should be glorified with Him. They are the fruit of His self-sacrifice. The outworking in them of His own character and spirit is His reward, and will be His joy throughout eternity. This joy they share with Him as the fruit of their labor and sacrifice is seen in other hearts and lives. They are workers together with Christ, and the Father will honor them as He honors His Son. 


As Jesus suffered that others might live, so it is with all who love Him supremely. It is the most weighty trust and the highest honor heaven can bestow, that we might be partakers of Christ's suffering. Christ learned obedience through the things He suffered, so shall we. Jesus is coming so very soon. Let us  hasten that day!!
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.