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R Myers

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The Desire of Ages--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« on: October 15, 2000, 08:36:00 PM »
The Crisis in Galilee


Listen to    The Crisis in Galilee

 





     When Christ forbade the people to declare Him king, He knew that a turning point in His history was reached. Multitudes who desired to exalt Him to the throne today would turn from Him tomorrow. The disappointment of their selfish ambition would turn their love to hatred, and their praise to curses. Yet knowing this, He took no measures to avert the crisis. From the first He had held out to His followers no hope of earthly rewards. To one who came desiring to become His disciple He had said, "The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay His head." Matthew 8:20. If men could have had the world with Christ, multitudes would have proffered Him their allegiance; but such service He could not accept. Of those now connected with Him there were many who had been attracted by the hope of a worldly kingdom. These must be undeceived. The deep spiritual teaching in the miracle of the loaves had not been comprehended. This was to be made plain. And this new revelation would bring with it a closer test. 
     The miracle of the loaves was reported far and near, and very early next morning the people flocked to Bethsaida to see Jesus. They came in great numbers, by land and sea. Those who had left Him the preceding night returned, expecting to find Him still there; for there had been no boat by which He could pass to the other side. But their search was fruitless, and many repaired to Capernaum, still seeking Him.
     Meanwhile He had arrived at Gennesaret, after an absence of but one day. As soon as it was known that He had landed, the people "ran through that whole region round about, and began to carry about in beds those that were sick, where they heard He was." Mark 6:55. 
     After a time He went to the synagogue, and there those who had come from Bethsaida found Him. They learned from His disciples how He had crossed the sea. The fury of the storm, and the many hours of fruitless rowing against adverse winds, the appearance of Christ walking upon the water, the fears thus aroused, His reassuring words, the adventure of Peter and its result, with the sudden stilling of the tempest and landing of the boat, were all faithfully recounted to the wondering crowd. Not content with this, however, many gathered about Jesus, questioning, "Rabbi, when camest Thou hither?" They hoped to receive from His own lips a further account of the miracle. 
     Jesus did not gratify their curiosity. He sadly said, "Ye seek Me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled." They did not seek Him from any worthy motive; but as they had been fed with the loaves, they hoped still to receive temporal benefit by attaching themselves to Him. The Saviour bade them, "Labor not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life." Seek not merely for material benefit. Let it not be the chief effort to provide for the life that now is, but seek for spiritual food, even that wisdom which will endure unto everlasting life. This the Son of God alone can give; "for Him hath God the Father sealed."
     For the moment the interest of the hearers was awakened. They exclaimed, "What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?" They had been performing many and burdensome works in order to recommend themselves to God; and they were ready to hear of any new observance by which they could secure greater merit. Their question meant, What shall we do that we may deserve heaven? What is the price we are required to pay in order to obtain the life to come? 
     "Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him whom He hath sent." The price of heaven is Jesus. The way to heaven is through faith in "the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." John 1:29. 
     But the people did not choose to receive this statement of divine truth. Jesus had done the very work which prophecy had foretold that the Messiah would do; but they had not witnessed what their selfish hopes had pictured as His work. Christ had indeed once fed the multitude with barley loaves; but in the days of Moses Israel had been fed with manna forty years, and far greater blessings were expected from the Messiah. Their dissatisfied hearts queried why, if Jesus could perform so many wondrous works as they had witnessed, could He not give health, strength, and riches to all His people, free them from their oppressors, and exalt them to power and honor? The fact that He claimed to be the Sent of God, and yet refused to be Israel's king, was a mystery which they could not fathom. His refusal was misinterpreted. Many concluded that He dared not assert His claims because He Himself doubted as to the divine character of His mission. Thus they opened their hearts to unbelief, and the seed which Satan had sown bore fruit of its kind, in misunderstanding and defection. 
     Now, half mockingly, a rabbi questioned, "What sign showest Thou then, that we may see, and believe Thee? what dost Thou work? Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat." 
     The Jews honored Moses as the giver of the manna, ascribing praise to the instrument, and losing sight of Him by whom the work had been accomplished. Their fathers had murmured against Moses, and had doubted and denied his divine mission. Now in the same spirit the children rejected the One who bore the message of God to themselves. "Then said Jesus unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven." The giver of the manna was standing among them. It was Christ Himself who had led the Hebrews through the wilderness, and had daily fed them with the bread from heaven. That food was a type of the real bread from heaven. The life-giving Spirit, flowing from the infinite fullness of God, is the true manna. Jesus said, "The bread of God is that which cometh down out of heaven, and giveth life unto the world." John 6:33, R. V. 
     Still thinking that it was temporal food to which Jesus referred, some of His hearers exclaimed, "Lord, evermore give us this bread." Jesus then spoke plainly: "I am the bread of life."
     The figure which Christ used was a familiar one to the Jews. Moses, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, had said, "Man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord." And the prophet Jeremiah had written, "Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart." Deuteronomy 8:3; Jeremiah 15:16. The rabbis themselves had a saying, that the eating of bread, in its spiritual significance, was the study of the law and the practice of good works; and it was often said that at the Messiah's coming all Israel would be fed. The teaching of the prophets made plain the deep spiritual lesson in the miracle of the loaves. This lesson Christ was seeking to open to His hearers in the synagogue. Had they understood the Scriptures, they would have understood His words when He said, "I am the bread of life." Only the day before, the great multitude, when faint and weary, had been fed by the bread which He had given. As from that bread they had received physical strength and refreshment, so from Christ they might receive spiritual strength unto eternal life. "He that cometh to Me," He said, "shall never hunger; and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst." But He added, "Ye also have seen Me, and believe not." 
     They had seen Christ by the witness of the Holy Spirit, by the revelation of God to their souls. The living evidences of His power had been before them day after day, yet they asked for still another sign. Had this been given, they would have remained as unbelieving as before. If they were not convinced by what they had seen and heard, it was useless to show them more marvelous works. Unbelief will ever find excuse for doubt, and will reason away the most positive proof.
     Again Christ appealed to those stubborn hearts. "Him that cometh to Me I will in nowise cast out." All who received Him in faith, He said, should have eternal life. Not one could be lost. No need for Pharisees and Sadducees to dispute concerning the future life. No longer need men mourn in hopeless grief over their dead. "This is the will of Him that sent Me, that everyone which seeth the Son, and believeth on Him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day." 
     But the leaders of the people were offended, "and they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that He saith, I came down from heaven?" They tried to arouse prejudice by referring scornfully to the lowly origin of Jesus. They contemptuously alluded to His life as a Galilean laborer, and to His family as being poor and lowly. The claims of this uneducated carpenter, they said, were unworthy of their attention. And on account of His mysterious birth they insinuated that He was of doubtful parentage, thus representing the human circumstances of His birth as a blot upon His history. 
     Jesus did not attempt to explain the mystery of His birth. He made no answer to the questionings in regard to His having come down from heaven, as He had made none to the questions concerning His crossing the sea.  He did not call attention to the miracles that marked His life. Voluntarily He had made Himself of no reputation, and taken upon Him the form of a servant. But His words and works revealed His character. All whose hearts were open to divine illumination would recognize in Him "the Only-begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth." John 1:14. 
     The prejudice of the Pharisees lay deeper than their questions would indicate; it had its root in the perversity of their hearts. Every word and act of Jesus aroused antagonism in them; for the spirit which they cherished could find in Him no answering chord. 
     "No man can come to Me, except the Father which hath sent Me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto Me." None will ever come to Christ, save those who respond to the drawing of the Father's love. But God is drawing all hearts unto Him, and only those who resist His drawing will refuse to come to Christ. 
     In the words, "They shall be all taught of God," Jesus referred to the prophecy of Isaiah: "All thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children." Isaiah 54:13. This scripture the Jews appropriated to themselves. It was their boast that God was their teacher. But Jesus showed how vain is this claim; for He said, "Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto Me." Only through Christ could they receive a knowledge of the Father. Humanity could not endure the vision of His glory. Those who had learned of God had been listening to the voice of His Son, and in Jesus of Nazareth they would recognize Him who through nature and revelation has declared the Father. 
     "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me hath everlasting life." Through the beloved John, who listened to these words, the Holy Spirit declared to the churches, "This is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He that hath the Son hath life." 1 John 5:11, 12. And Jesus said, "I will raise him up at the last day." Christ became one flesh with us, in order that we might become one spirit with Him. It is by virtue of this union that we are to come forth from the grave,--not merely as a manifestation of the power of Christ, but because, through faith, His life has become ours. Those who see Christ in His true character, and receive Him into the heart, have everlasting life. It is through the Spirit that Christ dwells in us; and the Spirit of God, received into the heart by faith, is the beginning of the life eternal.
     The people had referred Christ to the manna which their fathers ate in the wilderness, as if the furnishing of that food was a greater miracle than Jesus had performed; but He shows how meager was that gift when compared with the blessings He had come to bestow. The manna could sustain only this earthly existence; it did not prevent the approach of death, nor insure immortality; but the bread of heaven would nourish the soul unto everlasting life. The Saviour said, "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 forever." To this figure Christ now adds another. Only through dying could He impart life to men, and in the words that follow He points to His death as the means of salvation. He says, "The bread that I will give is My flesh, which I will give for the life of the world." 
     The Jews were about to celebrate the Passover at Jerusalem, in commemoration of the night of Israel's deliverance, when the destroying angel smote the homes of Egypt. In the paschal lamb God desired them to behold the Lamb of God, and through the symbol receive Him who gave Himself for the life of the world. But the Jews had come to make the symbol all-important, while its significance was unnoticed. They discerned not the Lord's body. The same truth that was symbolized in the paschal service was taught in the words of Christ. But it was still undiscerned. 
     Now the rabbis exclaimed angrily, "How can this Man give us His flesh to eat?" They affected to understand His words in the same literal sense as did Nicodemus when he asked, "How can a man be born when he is old?" John 3:4. To some extent they comprehended the meaning of Jesus, but they were not willing to acknowledge it. By misconstruing His words, they hoped to prejudice the people against Him. 
     Christ did not soften down His symbolical representation. He reiterated the truth in yet stronger language: "Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth My flesh, and drinketh My blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is meat indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He that eateth My flesh, and drinketh My blood, dwelleth in Me, and I in him." 
     To eat the flesh and drink the blood of Christ is to receive Him as a personal Saviour, believing that He forgives our sins, and that we are complete in Him. It is by beholding His love, by dwelling upon it, by drinking it in, that we are to become partakers of His nature. What food is to the body, Christ must be to the soul. Food cannot benefit us unless we eat it, unless it becomes a part of our being. So Christ is of no value to us if we do not know Him as a personal Saviour. A theoretical knowledge will do us no good. We must feed upon Him, receive Him into the heart, so that His life becomes our life. His love, His grace, must be assimilated. 
     But even these figures fail to present the privilege of the believer's relation to Christ. Jesus said, "As the living Father hath sent Me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth Me, even he shall live by Me." As the Son of God lived by faith in the Father, so are we to live by faith in Christ. So fully was Jesus surrendered to the will of God that the Father alone appeared in His life. Although tempted in all points like as we are, He stood before the world untainted by the evil that surrounded Him. Thus we also are to overcome as Christ overcame. 
     Are you a follower of Christ? Then all that is written concerning the spiritual life is written for you, and may be attained through uniting yourself to Jesus. Is your zeal languishing? has your first love grown cold? Accept again of the proffered love of Christ. Eat of His flesh, drink of His blood, and you will become one with the Father and with the Son.
     The unbelieving Jews refused to see any except the most literal meaning in the Saviour's words. By the ritual law they were forbidden to taste blood, and they now construed Christ's language into a sacrilegious speech, and disputed over it among themselves. Many even of the disciples said, "This is an hard saying; who can hear it?" 
     The Saviour answered them: "Doth this offend you? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where He was before? It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life."
     The life of Christ that gives life to the world is in His word. It was by His word that Jesus healed disease and cast out demons; by His word He stilled the sea, and raised the dead; and the people bore witness that His word was with power. He spoke the word of God, as He had spoken through all the prophets and teachers of the Old Testament. The whole Bible is a manifestation of Christ, and the Saviour desired to fix the faith of His followers on the word. When His visible presence should be withdrawn, the word must be their source of power. Like their Master, they were to live "by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." Matthew 4:4.
     As our physical life is sustained by food, so our spiritual life is sustained by the word of God. And every soul is to receive life from God's word for himself. As we must eat for ourselves in order to receive nourishment, so we must receive the word for ourselves. We are not to obtain it merely through the medium of another's mind. We should carefully study the Bible, asking God for the aid of the Holy Spirit, that we may understand His word. We should take one verse, and concentrate the mind on the task of ascertaining the thought which God has put in that verse for us. We should dwell upon the thought until it becomes our own, and we know "what saith the Lord." 
     In His promises and warnings, Jesus means me. God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son, that I by believing in Him, might not perish, but have everlasting life. The experiences related in God's word are to be my experiences. Prayer and promise, precept and warning, are mine. "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me." Galatians 2:20. As faith thus receives and assimilates the principles of truth, they become a part of the being and the motive power of the life. The word of God, received into the soul, molds the thoughts, and enters into the development of character. 
     By looking constantly to Jesus with the eye of faith, we shall be strengthened. God will make the most precious revelations to His hungering, thirsting people. They will find that Christ is a personal Saviour. As they feed upon His word, they find that it is spirit and life. The word destroys the natural, earthly nature, and imparts a new life in Christ Jesus. The Holy Spirit comes to the soul as a Comforter. By the transforming agency of His grace, the image of God is reproduced in the disciple; he becomes a new creature. Love takes the place of hatred, and the heart receives the divine similitude. This is what it means to live "by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." This is eating the Bread that comes down from heaven.
     Christ had spoken a sacred, eternal truth regarding the relation between Himself and His followers. He knew the character of those who claimed to be His disciples, and His words tested their faith. He declared that they were to believe and act upon His teaching. All who received Him would partake of His nature, and be conformed to His character. This involved the relinquishment of their cherished ambitions. It required the complete surrender of themselves to Jesus. They were called to become self-sacrificing, meek and lowly in heart. They must walk in the narrow path traveled by the Man of Calvary, if they would share in the gift of life and the glory of heaven. 
     The test was too great. The enthusiasm of those who had sought to take Him by force and make Him king grew cold. This discourse in the synagogue, they declared, had opened their eyes. Now they were undeceived. In their minds His words were a direct confession that He was not the Messiah, and that no earthly rewards were to be realized from connection with Him. They had welcomed His miracle-working power; they were eager to be freed from disease and suffering; but they would not come into sympathy with His self-sacrificing life. They cared not for the mysterious spiritual kingdom of which He spoke. The insincere, the selfish, who had sought Him, no longer desired Him. If He would not devote His power and influence to obtaining their freedom from the Romans, they would have nothing to do with Him.
     Jesus told them plainly, "There are some of you that believe not;" adding, "Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto Me, except it were given unto him of My Father." He wished them to understand that if they were not drawn to Him it was because their hearts were not open to the Holy Spirit. "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." 1 Corinthians 2:14. It is by faith that the soul beholds the glory of Jesus. This glory is hidden, until, through the Holy Spirit, faith is kindled in the soul. 
     By the public rebuke of their unbelief these disciples were still further alienated from Jesus. They were greatly displeased, and wishing to wound the Saviour and gratify the malice of the Pharisees, they turned their backs upon Him, and left Him with disdain. They had made their choice,--had taken the form without the spirit, the husk without the kernel. Their decision was never afterward reversed; for they walked no more with Jesus. 
     "Whose fan is in His hand, and He will throughly purge His floor, and gather His wheat into the garner." Matthew 3:12. This was one of the times of purging. By the words of truth, the chaff was being separated from the wheat. Because they were too vain and self-righteous to receive reproof, too world-loving to accept a life of humility, many turned away from Jesus. Many are still doing the same thing. Souls are tested today as were those disciples in the synagogue at Capernaum. When truth is brought home to the heart, they see that their lives are not in accordance with the will of God. They see the need of an entire change in themselves; but they are not willing to take up the self-denying work. Therefore they are angry when their sins are discovered. They go away offended, even as the disciples left Jesus, murmuring, "This is an hard saying; who can hear it?"   
     Praise and flattery would be pleasing to their ears; but the truth is unwelcome; they cannot hear it. When the crowds follow, and the multitudes are fed, and the shouts of triumph are heard, their voices are loud in praise; but when the searching of God's Spirit reveals their sin, and bids them leave it, they turn their backs upon the truth, and walk no more with Jesus.   
     As those disaffected disciples turned away from Christ, a different spirit took control of them. They could see nothing attractive in Him whom they had once found so interesting. They sought out His enemies, for they were in harmony with their spirit and work. They misinterpreted His words, falsified His statements, and impugned His motives. They sustained their course by gathering up every item that could be turned against Him; and such indignation was stirred up by these false reports that His life was in danger. 
     The news spread swiftly that by His own confession Jesus of Nazareth was not the Messiah. And thus in Galilee the current of popular feeling was turned against Him, as, the year before, it had been in Judea. Alas for Israel! They rejected their Saviour, because they longed for a conqueror who would give them temporal power. They wanted the meat which perishes, and not that which endures unto everlasting life. 
     With a yearning heart, Jesus saw those who had been His disciples departing from Him, the Life and the Light of men. The consciousness that His compassion was unappreciated, His love unrequited, His mercy slighted, His salvation rejected, filled Him with sorrow that was inexpressible. It was such developments as these that made Him a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief.
     Without attempting to hinder those who were leaving Him, Jesus turned to the twelve and said, "Will ye also go away?"   
     Peter replied by asking, "Lord, to whom shall we go?" "Thou hast the words of eternal life," he added. "And we believe and are sure that Thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God."
     "To whom shall we go?" The teachers of Israel were slaves to formalism. The Pharisees and Sadducees were in constant contention. To leave Jesus was to fall among sticklers for rites and ceremonies, and ambitious men who sought their own glory. The disciples had found more peace and joy since they had accepted Christ than in all their previous lives. How could they go back to those who had scorned and persecuted the Friend of sinners? They had long been looking for the Messiah; now He had come, and they could not turn from His presence to those who were hunting His life, and had persecuted them for becoming His followers. 
     "To whom shall we go?" Not from the teaching of Christ, His lessons of love and mercy, to the darkness of unbelief, the wickedness of the world. While the Saviour was forsaken by many who had witnessed His wonderful works, Peter expressed the faith of the disciples,--"Thou art that Christ." The very thought of losing this anchor of their souls filled them with fear and pain. To be destitute of a Saviour was to be adrift on a dark and stormy sea. 
     Many of the words and acts of Jesus appear mysterious to finite minds, but every word and act had its definite purpose in the work for our redemption; each was calculated to produce its own result. If we were capable of understanding His purposes, all would appear important, complete, and in harmony with His mission.   
     While we cannot now comprehend the works and ways of God, we can discern His great love, which underlies all His dealings with men. He who lives near to Jesus will understand much of the mystery of godliness. He will recognize the mercy that administers reproof, that tests the character, and brings to light the purpose of the heart. 
     When Jesus presented the testing truth that caused so many of His disciples to turn back, He knew what would be the result of His words; but He had a purpose of mercy to fulfill. He foresaw that in the hour of temptation every one of His beloved disciples would be severely tested. His agony in Gethsemane, His betrayal and crucifixion, would be to them a most trying ordeal. Had no previous test been given, many who were actuated by merely selfish motives would have been connected with them. When their Lord was condemned in the judgment hall; when the multitude who had hailed Him as their king hissed at Him and reviled Him; when the jeering crowd cried, "Crucify Him!"--when their worldly ambitions were disappointed, these self-seeking ones would, by renouncing their allegiance to Jesus, have brought upon the disciples a bitter, heart-burdening sorrow, in addition to their grief and disappointment in the ruin of their fondest hopes. In that hour of darkness, the example of those who turned from Him might have carried others with them. But Jesus brought about this crisis while by His personal presence He could still strengthen the faith of His true followers. 
     Compassionate Redeemer, who in the full knowledge of the doom that awaited Him, tenderly smoothed the way for the disciples, prepared them for their crowning trial, and strengthened them for the final test!   
           

 

Richard Myers

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Re: The Desire of Ages--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2000, 07:19:00 AM »
This chapter is another that has such important lessons for us as a people. What was the "Crisis in Galilee"?

Like in His sermon on the mount, Jesus continues His effort to point the people to the "unseen" world. They, like modern Israel were interested in the temporal things of life. When Jesus disappointed their worldly hopes many turned upon Him. Many do the same today by turning upon those that bring the same truths as did Jesus.

What is truth? Where do we find truth? "Thy Word is truth". "I am the bread of life," said Jesus. "Man doth not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." Many will go eveywhere but to their Bibles seeking "truth". They shall be disappointed when they seek for things that allow them to continue walking according to the lusts of their flesh. The Word of God contains all that is needed for us to know our duty.

Jesus revealed to those that were resisting the truth that they would not be in the kingdom unless there was a change in their lives. He told them "Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you." "It is by beholding His love, by dwelling upn it, by drinking it in, that we are to become partakers of His nature."

Yes, if we are to have eternal life, we must become partakers of His nature. Not professors of His ways, but partakers of His very nature. You may ask "in sinful flesh?" Yes, we may become partakers of His nature in sinful flesh if we will behold Him.

"So fully was Jesus surrendered to the will of God that the Father alone appeared in His life. Although tempted in all points like as we are, He stood before the world untainted by the evil that surrounded Him. Thus we also are to overcome as Christ overcame."  

Encouragement for those that love Jesus and want to serve Him. How many read this and never see it? How many will continue to resist the truth of the power of God's grace to transform our very nature? Will we continue to make excuses for our character? Will we call for reform in the pulpit?

Maybe I misunderstood what Jesus was saying? Let us continue. "By looking constantly to Jesus with the eye of faith, we shall be strengthened. God will make the most precious revelations to His hungering, thirsting people. They will find that Christ is a personal Saviour. As they feed upon His word, they find that it is spirit and life. The word destroys the natural, earthly nature, and imparts a new life in Christ Jesus. The Holy Spirit comes to the soul as a Comforter. By the transforming agency of His grace, the image of God is reproduced in the disciple; he becomes a new creature. Love takes the place of hatred, and the heart receives the divine similitude. This is what it means to live 'by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.' This is eating the Bread that comes down from heaven."

It does no good to argue with those that do not want truth. All may read this book and the Bible and see and understand the truth for themselves. Just as Jesus understood there were those that would not accept the truth, we also may understand the same. It is interesting and helpful to understand that Jesus further alienated some of His disciples  by rebuking them publicly.

Many rise up against this thought that Jesus would do such a thing. It is unloving they feel. Jesus knew it would turn these false professors from Him for good. He was sad, but it did not stop Him from doing so. "Souls are tested today as were those disciples in the synagogue at Capernaum. When truth is brought home to the heart, they see that their lives are not in accordance with the will of God. They see the need of an entire change in themselves; but they are not willing to take up the self-denying work. Therefore they are angry when their sins are discovered. They go away offended, even as the disciples left Jesus, murmuring...."  

Richard

Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

Kellee

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Re: The Desire of Ages--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2000, 08:17:00 AM »

(1) It's hard to know if, throughout this whole scene, Jesus is weary, exasperated, frustrated, earnest, or what. We don't get many clues as to that. But I would have to guess a little frustration is mixed in with His words, even if He's not showing it outwardly. This is why:

First, He says "Truly, truly, I say to you, Moses wasn't the one who gave you that bread from heaven." Because He was the giver of manna, standing among them. The people are clueless at this statement. I mean, we're talking some really dim people.

So then, Jesus says "The bread of God is that which cometh down out of heaven, and giveth life to the world." Is this sound like 20 questions? Jesus giving little clues and hints. I don't mean to paint this as just a joke, because it was serious and Jesus was trying to get a point across, but these people were just to dumb to understand what He was saying.

SIDE NOTE: This is something I love about God. His people don't understand what He's saying here. So does He leave them alone in darkness? No, He keeps re-phrasing and trying to think of a way to get His message across. Some people may have gotten it in the first statement. Others probably never got it at all. But God uses every means possible to reach all of His children. And He still does the same thing today. Only not just with words. He does it with work, worship, TV shows, music, the Bible, other books, maybe even fiction!.... God uses everything possible to communicate to us where we're at. Nothing is out of His grasp to use to get through to us.

Okay, back to the story. The people are still dunces. So Jesus finally spoke plainly and said, "I am the bread of life." I mean, how much more plain do you need it?  ;D He's trying and trying to get His point across, and the people are just standing there with confused looks, so finally He says I AM THE BREAD I'M TALKING ABOUT!! IT'S ME!! And some STILL didn't get it. Wow...it made me laugh and be frustrated for Jesus all at the same time...so we can only imagine how it made Him feel. This was what He encountered nearly every day He was on earth!


(2) "Compassionate Redeemer, who in the full knowledge of the doom that awaited Him, tenderly smoothed the way for the disciples, prepared them for their crowning trial, and strengthened them for the final test."

The final test that they would all (besides John) fail miserably at. God is truly such a wonderful friend to sinners. Who could be more patient? Who could be more loving? Who could be more gracious? Here, God is attempting to take care of the needs of His children though He knows that in that final hour, they will not give one thought to His own needs. He doesn't care. He only wishes they understood what was going to happen so they wouldn't have to despair.

Just think what it would have been like if they had truly listened to Jesus and understood what was going to happen. Just think what would have happened if they had known that Jesus was going to be resurrected on Sunday. If they'd truly had their trust in God, if they were truly listening, what a witness they could have been!! They could have gathered at the cross and been a little band of worshippers, giving thanks to God and witnessing to those others who were gathered there. They could have been encouraging, offering the word of hope that all was not lost because they knew what was to happen on Sunday.

They could have rested with their Lord on that Sabbath, giving thanks to God for what they had just witnessed the day before, spending the day earnestly reflecting on what it meant, questioning why. And then they could have been at the tomb on Sunday morning with a reception for Jesus. Maybe they could have brought breakfast to the Roman guards and said "You better eat fast, you're about to take a nap!" Oh, things could have been so different!! But as it turned out, they, JESUS' FRIENDS!!! MISSED OUT ON THE CROSS!!! They had walked with Him for 3 years, and they missed His most important weekend. That's sad.

But are we any different? Just think of how things would be different for us if we would really put all our trust in Jesus, if we truly handed our lives over to Him. We would live so much differently! We would laugh in the face of death, we would scoff at adversity, we would love widely and extravagantly. We would be fertile, wide-open plains for God's mercy and grace. We would abound with life and love. We could stand in the midst of our greatest trial, perhaps sad at what was happening around us, but secure and confident in knowing that a Sunday follows every Friday. We would truly be different people. We would be the people God is longing for.


Richard Myers

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Re: The Desire of Ages--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2000, 07:04:00 AM »
Sister Kellee, your closing point is just the point we, as a people need to understand. This is the gospel of grace. The Laodicean condition allows us to believe we already are saved before having this trust you speak of. Such a deception. It will do no good to dwell on our lost condition, we must think upon Christ. To never know that we are lost is a fatal deception. We must acknowledge our condition and our need of "saving faith", a faith that produces just what you expressed. This is the Christian experience. This is what God is longing for. Let us learn of the power of God's grace to keep us.  :)
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--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2000, 04:20:00 AM »
God loves us and has provided us with much that we would know of this love. He sent His Son to teach us and to be an example of what trusting in divine power can mean for us.

God is God and can work in many ways that we understand little or nothing of, but in regards to Sister Kellee's statement "He does it with work, worship,TV shows, music, the Bible, other books, maybe even fiction!.... God uses everything possible to communicate to us where we're at", I would have to caution that we are not to do this. God may take these things that are being used and turn them to good, but we are not to mingle the common with the holy. We are not to cheapen holy things with fictional novels and comic books or fictional television programs.

We are to lift Jesus up, not pull Him down. We must elevate Him, not make Him like one of us. There was and is only one Sinless One, Jesus Christ. Yes, He lived in the "likeness of sinful flesh", but He was wholly God. Our picture of God must be elevated and at the same time we must reveal His great love and compassion for erring man in taking upon Himself our sins. "The message is to be proclaimed with sanctified ability. The word of the Lord has been spoken. God calls for sanctified hearts and lips. The messages of warning are to be given in the large cities, and also in the towns and villages. The men of God's appointment are to be zealously at work, disposing of our books, and disseminating light. The articles in our papers are not to present the truth in the style of a romance;  for this weakens the impression that should be made by the most solemn truth ever committed to mortals. They are to contain a plain, 'Thus saith the Lord.' The message must be repeated, and Bible reasons given, not in the style of a romance, but in the style of the Bible. There are many who are watching for the evidence of true religion."

Again, we are not to use all avenues to reach the people. We are to present the truth in many ways and to all people, but we must do so in the manner which we have been instructed. We must honor our God. We must not use comic books or novels, but we must present Jesus in a holy manner that does not bring Him down from His high estate.
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--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2000, 04:49:00 AM »
As we study the Bible, this book, and this chapter, we see that the promise first given to Adam, that God would give us a hatred for sin, is in fact not only a possibility in our lives, but God's desire.

Note how this truth is highlighted by this beautiful statement "To eat the flesh and drink the blood of Christ is to receive Him as a personal Saviour, believing that He forgives our sins, and that we are complete in Him. It is by beholding His love, by dwelling upon it, by drinking it in, that we are to become partakers of His nature. What food is to the body, Christ must be to the soul. Food cannot benefit us unless we eat it, unless it becomes a part of our being. So Christ is of no value to us if we do not know Him as a personal Saviour. A theoretical knowledge will do us no good. We must feed upon Him, receive Him into the heart, so that His life becomes our life. His love, His grace, must be assimilated.

But even these figures fail to present the privilege of the believer's relation to Christ. Jesus said, 'As the living Father hath sent Me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth Me, even he shall live by Me.' As the Son of God lived by faith in the Father, so are we to live by faith in Christ. So fully was Jesus surrendered to the will of God that the Father alone appeared in His life. Although tempted in all points like as we are, He stood before the world untainted by the evil that surrounded Him. Thus we also are to overcome as Christ overcame.

Are you a follower of Christ? Then all that is written concerning the spiritual life is written for you, and may be attained through uniting yourself to Jesus. Is your zeal languishing? has your first love grown cold? Accept again of the proffered love of Christ. Eat of His flesh, drink of His blood, and you will become one with the Father and with the Son."

We may have this experience today. We may overcome the sins that so easily beset us IF we will become one with Jesus today by feeding upon Jesus.  :)
Jesus receives His reward when we reflect His character, the fruits of the Spirit......We deny Jesus His reward when we do not.

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Re: The Desire of Ages--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2000, 11:29:00 AM »

Desire of Ages
Chapter 41
The Crisis in Galilee

I get a bit in a bind when I approach chosen ones to offer them the plan of salvation. My natural approach is in the direction of talking about the Lord as being the one and only who can loosen the knot of problems which they have due to the cause and effect of making wrong decisions. It sounds sometimes, when I listen to my own attemps at sharing Christ to others, that I empasize freedom from guilt and suffering, or perhaps offering the how to have a clear clean connection with the Creator, for the sake of having it better in life. This apparently is not always the right stress I should use when choosing words to relay to them their need of Jesus as Savior.

Though I use the Bill Bright's 4 spiritual laws a lot, but it has it's limitations. I still need coaching in methods when I am willing to be used for as an instrument for the Holy Spirit to awaken the heart of another to let loose of the 'world' and give total allegience to Christ as Lord. To so influence people who then made a decision to have Jesus on the throne of their lives, has aborted many times into producing 'rice-christians'. Those who join up only for the sake of material worldy advantage or to put it in the venacular '...what's-in-it-for-me?' type of conversion decisions. Sure they have been converted but not to the Lord as Lord over their lives.
Most want temporal relief from a problem or physical pain/sickness. Having been exposed to the 'heavenly barley loaves miracle' for themselves in their lives, they start off quite happy in their new walk. But I have seen a few defect from their commitment when the going got tough for denying lusts or dying to self.

Jesus declaring 'I am the bread of Life' is important for me to relay to others when and how they are to stay in the faith during the process of santification. Feeding on Him. Feeding daily on all the words coming from the mouth of the Lord. Getting the new converts to experience as Jeremiah did "Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart." Jer. 15:16.. So how does the principle of truth in " He that cometh to Me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst" get to be reality in our lives as followers of Christ ?

The beginning of the walk of righteousness happens when "those of us see Christ in His true Character, and receive Him into the heart". Then we have the promise of eternal life. " It is through the Spirit that Christ dwells in us; and the Spirit of God, received into the heart by faith, is the beginning of eternal life. The nourishment of and for this life to keep it alive is Jesus. We need to experience the secret of spiritually eating from Him. This is spiritually to be discerned. Figurely speaking in symbolic icons is often a veil-like clouding of the mind of many, but for those who have the spark of understanding from the Holy Spirit Himself these words fit to the 'T'.

Very important indeed is to understand the symbolism of the Passa lamb eaten with the bread and drink of wine ceremony. Also the original Passah in Egypt with the meaning of the blood sprinkled on the doorposts from the killing of an innocent lamb.

"To eat the flesh and drink the blood of Christ is to receive Him as personal Saviour, believing that He forgives our sins, and that we are complete in Him. It is by beholding His love, by dwelling upon it, by drrinking it in, that we are to become partakers of His nature. ....So Christ is of no value to us if we do not know Hima as a persona Saviour. A theoretical knowledge will do us no good. W must feed upon Him, receive Him into the heart, so that His life becomes our life. His love, His grace, must be assimilated."

"So fully was Jesus surrendered to the will of God that the Father alone appeared in His life. As the Son of God lived by faith in the Father, so are we to live by faith in Christ. Although tempted in all points like as we are, He stood before the world untainted by the evil that surrounded Him. Thus we also are to overcome as Christ overcame."

~~~~~~~~~~~
Prayer : Lord Jesus I pray for myself and my brethern here on Online. Where those of us have grown cold in our first love to you, where those of us languishing in our former zeal, lift us up to new strenght when we turn to you for nourishment. Lead us to eat of your flesh and drink of your blood. Make these mysteries a reality for us please. Bind us in a closeness to you and the Father which you see as unity. For your kingdom's glory, in your name I pray, Amen.
~~~~~~~~~~~~

Folks, we are dealing with the writing mentality of Jewishness. We are having to put aside the Greek/Roman way of mathematical thinking to adapt to the oriental way of seeing concepts and truths in figurative speech. He is the Word. So though He is visibly withdrawn from us His word is still with us. The whole bible is a manisfestation of Christ. Don't let listening to tapes of good speakers be a substitue for reading bible portions to allow Christ to speak to you directly personally. Don't let a sermon on Sabbath make due for the whole week as a spiritual meal. It leads to then a very shallow weak christian life during the week. That's unhealthy spiritually when we live only on spritual rehash of others. Others eating, chewing, digesting and regurgetating then giving it to us for our benefit is a fine addition but shouldn't be our main stay. We have to be eating ourselves from Jesus direct to have the power promised. "We are not to obtain it through the medium of another's mind".

Bible study for it's own sake, friends, is the solution. When we ask for the Holy Spirit to enlighten our understanding then such does take place. Ascertain the principle of thought that God has put into the verse you are reading for yourself. Concentrate until it becomes a "thus saith the Lord" for you. Assimilate the principles of the truth you see in the text until they become a part of your being. Let them be the motivation behind the daily decisions you have to make. Talk to God and ask him to let His word mold the thoughts that you have. In so doing the habits of bad thinking go and the character grows into the likeness of Jesus.

Stay a while in the Psalms and the Holy Spirit will come to you as the Comforter, stay a while in the prophets and He will come to you as the future judge and King, go to the gospels and experience him as the servant merciful compassionate one. Each book or letter glows with the personality and character of God. The goal of heaven is that we who receive Him will partake of His nature and conform to His character. The conditions we're called to are to relinquish selfish ambitions, make a complete surrender of yourself to Jesus, become self-sacrificing, meek and lowly in heart "..if we are to share in the gift of life and the glory of heaven."

We may be called to a life of poverty, or a life of sacrifice, or a life of nondescript without acclaim by men. We may have to do with a life of being tied to a commitment of duty with no respite. If we have relenquished our dreams and goals for the Will of God to be lived out in our lives than it is not important which position we have in the kingdom of God on earth. In due time He will exalt us.

If a person's heart is not open to the Holy Spirit, then God can not draw him to Him. When the Holy Spirit kindles faith in the person, he begins to see the glory of God in Jesus. "When truth is brought home to the hearts, they see that their lives are not in accordance with the will of God."

~~~~~~~~~ Joan ~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Richard Myers

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Re: The Desire of Ages--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #7 on: December 05, 2000, 08:03:00 PM »
 :)

Then, we can see our need of a Saviour. He is knocking on the door of the heart and is willing, ever ready to lift us up out of the water just as He did Peter, when Peter called  out "Lord save me!"

I appreciate your words, Sister Joan. They give all of the honor and glory to Christ and are full of hope for us sinners.  :)

Richard

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Dugald T Lewis MD

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Re: The Desire of Ages--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2001, 06:04:00 PM »
Page 393:

"The news spread swiftly that by His own confession Jesus of Nazareth was not the Messiah. And thus in Galilee the current of popular feeling was turned against Him,as, the year before, it had been in Judea. Alas for Israel! They rejected their Saviour, because they longed for a conqueror who would give them temporal power. They wanted the meat which perishes, and not that which endures unto everlasting life.

With a yearning heart, Jesus saw those who had been His disciples departing from Him, the Life and the Light of men. The consciousness that His compasssion was unappreciated, His love unrequited, His mercy slighted, His salvation rejected, filled Him with sorrow that was inexpressible. It was such developments as these that made Him a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.

Without attempting to hinder those who were leaving Him, Jesus turned to the twelve and said, "Will ye also go away?"

Peter replied by asking, "Lord, to whom shall we go?" "Thou hast the word of eternal life," he added. "and we believe and are sure that Thou art Christ, the Son of the living God."

"To whom shall we go?" The teachers of Israel were slaves to formalism. The Pharisees and Sadducees were in constant contention. To leave Jesus was to fall among sticklers for rites and ceremonies, and ambitious men who sought their own glory. The disciples had found more peace and joy since they had accepted Christ than in all their precious lives. How could they go back to those who had scorned and persecuted the Friend of sinners? They had long been looking for the Messiah; now He had come, and they could not turn from His presence to those who were hunting His life, and had persecuted them for becoming His followers.

"To whom shall we go?" Not from the teaching of Christ, His lessons of love and mercy, to the darkness of unbelief, the wickedness of the world. While the Saviour was forsaken by many who had witnessed His wonderful works, Peter expressed the faith of the disciples, - "Thou art that Christ." The very thought of losing this anchor of their souls filled them with fear and pain. To be destitute of a Saviour was to be adrift on a dark and stormy sea. "
_______________________________

The question that we all must answer is "To whom shall we go?


Richard Myers

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Re: The Desire of Ages--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2016, 08:01:18 AM »
Here is presented an interesting and important principle that many have been led to believe is not love, when in fact it is love.

"When Jesus presented the testing truth that caused so many of His disciples to turn back, He knew what would be the result of His words; but He had a purpose of mercy to fulfill."


Jesus presented a "testing truth" He knew would cause some to leave the faith. He spoke words that drove away some of the disciples. In our time, in these last days of Earth's history, there is a dividing taking place in the church. The sheep and the goats are being separated by God. We understand this from Scripture. What is it that divides? It is the truth. When the Spirit impresses us to present a truth, then we present it and leave the results with God, even if we understand it is going to cause some to leave the church. 

In Jesus' example, why did He present a truth knowing it would cause some to forever leave Him?

listen to the chapter
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Pastor Sean Brizendine

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Re: The Desire of Ages--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2016, 06:54:29 AM »

In Jesus' example, why did He present a truth knowing it would cause some to forever leave Him

As I was again blessed by reading this chapter, I reflect upon the meaningful answer to the question you posed, Richard. The second-to-last paragraph in the chapter answers it beautifully:

"When Jesus presented the testing truth that caused so many of His disciples to turn back, He knew what would be the result of His words; but He had a purpose of mercy to fulfill. He foresaw that in the hour of temptation every one of His beloved disciples would be severely tested. His agony in Gethsemane, His betrayal and crucifixion, would be to them a most trying ordeal. Had no previous test been given, many who were actuated by merely selfish motives would have been connected with them. When their Lord was condemned in the judgment hall; when the multitude who had hailed Him as their king hissed at Him and reviled Him; when the jeering crowd cried, 'Crucify Him!'--when their worldly ambitions were disappointed, these self-seeking ones would, by renouncing their allegiance to Jesus, have brought upon the disciples a bitter, heart-burdening sorrow, in addition to their grief and disappointment in the ruin of their fondest hopes. In that hour of darkness, the example of those who turned from Him might have carried others with them. But Jesus brought about this crisis while by His personal presence He could still strengthen the faith of His true followers."

Jesus allowed this crisis, or test of faith in presenting this "testing truth" about the necessity of eating His flesh and drinking His blood as a means of separating the chaff from the wheat, of helping to prepare the honest hearts to be better able to bear future trial in His death and the events surrounding His crowing sacrifice.

I am so thankful for the trials Jesus has brought in my life or allowed at JUST THE RIGHT TIME. Though from a human perspective it may look like it was less than love or a good idea for Jesus to speak in a way that would cause a division at this point in His ministry in Galilee, there was a definite reason for it! Jesus was simply helping His beloved disciples so that in the most severe trial, they would be better able to bear it.

Have you ever thought that the reason God is allowing you to go through such great trials today is because He is preparing you for greater trials ahead, and that this is all a purpose of mercy and perfect love? Have we as a people begun to realize that the trials God allows mean benefit, and that part of God's purpose in trial is character refinement and sensing more closely our dependence upon Him? As I read the precious words throughout this chapter, I am immensely encouraged and strengthened. I just cannot get enough of the loveliness of Jesus--having tasted and seen the goodness of the Lord Jesus who reveals the infinite love of the Father, and having become a partaker of the divine nature through faith in His Word by receiving the Holy Spirit, I look at life as an immense blessing--even the trials I choose to rejoice in, because I know Jesus has promised to evermore abide with me. It by living by faith upon Him that you and I have the promise that all the fruits of the Spirit will be seen in our lives--not one will be missing!

May we each experience an ever-increasing power in prayer, a sweeter communion with Jesus in His word and the Spirit of Prophecy, and a growing desire to share Him with all around us. Jesus is coming again! But praise Him for the trials that will better prepare us for the time of trouble that precedes His second coming. All glory to God.
"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--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2016, 07:48:11 AM »
Thank you for sharing, Pastor Sean. There is always more we can discuss in each chapter, but what you have shared this morning is most important. The underlying principle as to God using testing truths to cause separation is not understood by many and outright rejected by others, as being unkind, or unloving. Yet, here we see it is "merciful" and done so in an effort to help those who can be helped. We saw the same thing when God destroyed every living thing on the earth except what was in the ark. Why did He do this? Do give us a better opportunity to be saved. For the same reason He shortened the lifespan of man. The longer man lived, the more evil society became. Today, we understand if we will cease killing animals for food and eating their eggs and drinking their milk, there will be a great benefit by returning to the diet God gave prior to the flood.

Pastor Sean asked an important question: "Have we as a people begun to realize that the trials God allow mean benefit, and that part of God's purpose in trial is character refinement and sensing more closely our dependence upon Him?"
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--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2016, 07:00:55 AM »
Our trials do indeed work for our good and God's glory as we abide in Christ. Jesus measures a test for us each day. We are to glory in our tribulations, knowing our character will become more and more like the character of God. And, our heavenly Father allowed great trials to come upon His innocent Son also. As we behold Him in those trials, we learn of Him, of His loveliness, or His grace towards us while we were yet sinners.

     Jesus did not attempt to explain the mystery of His birth. He made no answer to the questionings in regard to His having come down from heaven, as He had made none to the questions concerning His crossing the sea.  He did not call attention to the miracles that marked His life. Voluntarily He had made Himself of no reputation, and taken upon Him the form of a servant. But His words and works revealed His character. All whose hearts were open to divine illumination would recognize in Him "the Only-begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth." John 1:14. 


Amen! If our hearts are open to the truth, we will see Him as He is, full of grace and truth. We will listen to His words and see His works which reveal His character of love and justice. Any by beholding Him, we shall be changed into the same image (character....2 Cor. 3:18).
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--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #13 on: August 24, 2016, 09:05:29 AM »
We rejoice as we experience a living-faith connection with Christ--no matter the circumstances!

In His promises and warnings, Jesus means me. God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son, that I by believing in Him, might not perish, but have everlasting life. The experiences related in God's word are to be my experiences. Prayer and promise, precept and warning, are mine. "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me." Galatians 2:20. As faith thus receives and assimilates the principles of truth, they become a part of the being and the motive power of the life. The word of God, received into the soul, molds the thoughts, and enters into the development of character. 

I pray for this experience to continually deepen and expand what God can do in and through me, because Jesus is an abiding guest in the soul!
"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--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #14 on: November 19, 2016, 05:08:10 AM »
In reading this morning this caught my eye. I had not underlined it before but I did today :)  It is a very important truth and a great mystery.

Christ became one flesh with us, in order that we might become one spirit with Him. It is by virtue of this union that we are to come forth from the grave,--not merely as a manifestation of the power of Christ, but because, through faith, His life has become ours. Those who see Christ in His true character, and receive Him into the heart, have everlasting life. It is through the Spirit that Christ dwells in us; and the Spirit of God, received into the heart by faith, is the beginning of the life eternal.

Can you imagine? His life becomes ours? I would think that this one of those mysteries that we will be studying for eternity. Christ's life becomes ours! When we gain Christ we gain everything. We get his obedience, His joy, His self control, His peace, His love, His patience, His kindness, His goodness, His faith and His meekness. What more could we possibly want or need? Then just a few paragraphs away we are told how to gain Christ. here it is...

It is by beholding His love, by dwelling upon it, by drrinking it in, that we are to become partakers of His nature.

Here is where the promise from Peter is fulfilled.

2Pe 1:4  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.

As I think about this all that comes to mind is David's words....

Psalms 8:4 What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?
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--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #15 on: November 19, 2016, 06:34:48 AM »
Glorious truth! Hallelujah! I heartily say, "Amen, Jim"!! I love the points you brought out, and I love how we can eat Christ and be one with Him in experience by a living-faith!

   As our physical life is sustained by food, so our spiritual life is sustained by the word of God. And every soul is to receive life from God's word for himself. As we must eat for ourselves in order to receive nourishment, so we must receive the word for ourselves. We are not to obtain it merely through the medium of another's mind. We should carefully study the Bible, asking God for the aid of the Holy Spirit, that we may understand His word. We should take one verse, and concentrate the mind on the task of ascertaining the thought which God has put in that verse for us. We should dwell upon the thought until it becomes our own, and we know "what saith the Lord." 
"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--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #16 on: November 19, 2016, 06:40:49 AM »
Amen and amen!! Such unity I have never witnessed before. We are beginning to identify the gospel of Jesus Christ upon which rests the foundation of our faith! Jesus is everything to us, and if when we go into the grave, if that need be, we have the Spirit of Jesus indwelling our hearts, then this connection with Christ will bring us forth from the grave. How important that we maintain that connection once it is formed.

Such an important truth Jim has shared with us this morning.

Christ became one flesh with us, in order that we might become one spirit with Him. It is by virtue of this union that we are to come forth from the grave,--not merely as a manifestation of the power of Christ, but because, through faith, His life has become ours. Those who see Christ in His true character, and receive Him into the heart, have everlasting life. It is through the Spirit that Christ dwells in us; and the Spirit of God, received into the heart by faith, is the beginning of the life eternal.


And, Jesus tells us how it is that we are to receive His Spirit. We are to "eat His flesh and drink His blood." He is the Manna which came down from heaven. The Word is a revelation of Christ. And as we behold Him in His Word, we become changed in character.

    It is by beholding His love, by dwelling upon it, by drinking it in, that we are to become partakers of His nature. What food is to the body, Christ must be to the soul. Food cannot benefit us unless we eat it, unless it becomes a part of our being. So Christ is of no value to us if we do not know Him as a personal Saviour. A theoretical knowledge will do us no good. We must feed upon Him, receive Him into the heart, so that His life becomes our life. His love, His grace, must be assimilated. 


We need to develop the habit of being in an attitude of prayer continually. What we have read this morning explains why when we are born again of the Spirit, we then manifest each one of the fruits of the Spirit. This is what we see in the life of those who have Christ abiding in them, His character, His life! What a miracle!
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--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #17 on: February 14, 2017, 07:22:59 AM »
What a loving Savior we see in our reading today--even though His words brought a separation, it was in love that He spoke these testing truths, that those who were true disciples in heart would be better able to bear further tests. God prepares us day by day, and we can be thankful for what He teaches us and how He guides us, as He prepares us for greater growth in character--that we may reflect the loveliness of Jesus by beholding Him continually!

  While we cannot now comprehend the works and ways of God, we can discern His great love, which underlies all His dealings with men. He who lives near to Jesus will understand much of the mystery of godliness. He will recognize the mercy that administers reproof, that tests the character, and brings to light the purpose of the heart. 

As we go about our labors today, let us breathe in the atmosphere of grace that God has surrounded us with, let us appreciate the love that we do understand, and allow His Spirit to reveal more to 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: The Desire of Ages--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #18 on: May 12, 2017, 07:53:24 AM »
"What is truth?" Some want the truth, others do not.

     His words and works revealed His character. All whose hearts were open to divine illumination would recognize in Him "the Only-begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth." John 1:14.
     The prejudice of the Pharisees lay deeper than their questions would indicate; it had its root in the perversity of their hearts. Every word and act of Jesus aroused antagonism in them; for the spirit which they cherished could find in Him no answering chord......As faith thus receives and assimilates the principles of truth, they become a part of the being and the motive power of the life. The word of God, received into the soul, molds the thoughts, and enters into the development of character.
     By looking constantly to Jesus with the eye of faith, we shall be strengthened. God will make the most precious revelations to His hungering, thirsting people. They will find that Christ is a personal Saviour. As they feed upon His word, they find that it is spirit and life. The word destroys the natural, earthly nature, and imparts a new life in Christ Jesus. The Holy Spirit comes to the soul as a Comforter. By the transforming agency of His grace, the image of God is reproduced in the disciple; he becomes a new creature. Love takes the place of hatred, and the heart receives the divine similitude. This is what it means to live "by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." This is eating the Bread that comes down from heaven. 


Jesus is "the way, the truth, and the life" (John 14:6). How much do we want the truth?
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--41--The Crisis in Galilee
« Reply #19 on: May 12, 2017, 09:24:47 AM »
If we want the truth more than anything, then we will willingly commune with Christ in these thoughtful hours of mediation upon His life and mission, and we shall be changed and strengthened. Then we shall welcome what He deems best for us, even though it be a cross:

   While we cannot now comprehend the works and ways of God, we can discern His great love, which underlies all His dealings with men. He who lives near to Jesus will understand much of the mystery of godliness. He will recognize the mercy that administers reproof, that tests the character, and brings to light the purpose of the heart. 

Thank the Lord that He gives what is best!
"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}