Showers of Blessing . . . why do we expect so little ?

     “Therefore . . . being by the right hand of God exalted (Ephesians 1:18-21), and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit . . . . He hath shed forth (gushed out as a fountain, poured forth) this, which ye now see and hear . . .

     Then said Peter unto them . . . Repent, and be baptized* (Acts 19:1-8) every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins . . . and ye shall receive the gift* (something given freely out of great love for the receiver) of the Holy Spirit . . .      For the Promise is unto you, and to your children . . . and to all that are afar off (yet in the outer court – Ephesians 2:13-14), even as many as the LORD our God shall call . . . !”     Acts 2:33-39

ref: article on the Baptism of Christ

Quote –      “The church is not now the separate and peculiar people she was when the fires of persecution were kindled against her. How is the gold become dim! how is the most fine gold changed!     I saw that if the church had always retained her peculiar, holy character, the power of the Holy Spirit which was imparted to the disciples would still be with her. The sick would be healed, devils would be rebuked and cast out, and she would be mighty and a terror to her enemies.”   – Early Writings, p.227

note:   the character and righteousness (innocence, holiness and perfection)  of Christ Jesus is freely ours, if we will through surrender and living (active) faith appropriate it as our very own !

Quote –      “In order to be candidates for heaven we must meet the requirement of the law: “Thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.” (Luke 10:27).

     We can do this only* as we grasp by faith the righteousness of Christ. By beholding Jesus (Isaiah 45:22-25) we receive a living, expanding principle in the heart, and the Holy Spirit carries on the work, and the believer advances from grace to grace, from strength to greater strength, from character to more perfect character.

     He conforms to the image of Christ, until in spiritual growth he attains unto the measure of the full stature in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 4:7-8 and 4:12-13). Thus Christ makes an end of the curse of sin (Daniel 9:24), and sets the believing soul free from its action and effect !

     Christ alone is able to do this, for “in all things it behoved Him to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest [of our profession], in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation* for the sins of the people. For in that He Himself hath suffered being tempted, He is able to succour them that are tempted” (Hebrews 2:17-18).

Reconciliation means that every barrier between the soul and God is removed, and that the sinner realizes what the pardoning love of God means. By reason of the sacrifice made by Christ for fallen men, God can justly pardon the transgressor (Romans 3:24-26) who accepts the merits* [worthiness] of Christ. Christ was the channel through which the mercy, love, and righteousness might flow from the heart of God to the heart of the sinner. “He is faithful and He is (I Am) just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness . . . !” I John 1:9
– 1 Selected Messages, p.395

note:     “Jesus is the only hope of the soul . . . . The moment the sinner lays hold of Christ by faith, that moment his sins are no longer upon him. Christ stands in the sinner’s place, and declares, “I have borne his guilt, I have been punished for his transgressions, I have taken his sins, and put My righteousness upon him.”
ref:   Isaiah 53:4-12, II Corinthians 5:21 and I Peter 1:24

     In Christ the sinner stands guiltless before the law. But how vain is the hope of entering heaven if we have no present faith in Christ, no delight in spiritual things, no joy in anticipating the joys of heaven.  . . . The Lord commands . . . and every command is a promise (Education, p.126), “Be ye holy, for I Am Holy.”

     The Christian’s constant endeavour should be to come into perfect conformity to the Life of Christ (Romans 8:2-4 and II Corinthians 4:10-11); we must look away from the darkness (doubt and fear), and face the Light (the unfailing assurance and power of God’s Word).      Do not, by your attitude of unbelief, charge God with partiality or unfaithfulness. Your doubt casts reflections upon the verity of His promises. When in living faith you come to Jesus, and become doers of His Word, you will taste and see that the Lord is good. You will say to all, “By His stripes we are healed.” You will think of Jesus, you will talk of Jesus, as One Who is willing and able* (full of power) to save to the uttermost all that come unto God by Him.

     If you believe in Christ as your Saviour, His perfect obedience is set to your account. You are pardoned as you look to Jesus as your Substitute and Surety (guarantee of a completed work) . The promise of God is, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and He is Just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us (Ezekiel 36:22-36) from all unrighteousness.”                                                                                                                 – Present Truth, January 30, 1890

     In the prophecy of Daniel it was recorded of Christ that He shall “make reconciliation for iniquity, and . . . bring in everlasting righteousness” (Daniel 9:24). Every soul may say: “By His perfect obedience He has satisfied the claims of the law (for the law of God – Deity demands nothing less than perfect holiness, James 2:10 and Galatians 3:10-14) , and my only hope is found in looking to Him as my Substitute and Surety, Who obeyed the law perfectly for me.

  By faith in His merits* (worthiness) I am free* from (Galatians 3:22 and 5:1-4 and 4:21-29) the condemnation of the law. He clothes me with His righteousness, which answers all the demands of the law. I am complete in Him (Colossians 2:10 and Ephesians 1:6) Who brings in everlasting righteousness. He presents me to God in the spotless garment of which no thread was woven by any human agent. All is of Christ, and all the glory, honor, and majesty are to be given to the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sins of the world !”
– 1 Selected Messages, p.395-396

“Just prior to His leaving His disciples for the heavenly courts, Jesus encouraged them with the Promise of the Holy Spirit. This promise belongs as much to us as it did to them, and yet how rarely it is presented before the people, and its reception spoken of in the church. In consequence of this silence upon this most important theme, what promise do we know less about by its practical fulfillment than this rich promise of the gift of the Holy Spirit, whereby efficiency is to be given to all our spiritual labor?

     The Promise of the Holy Spirit is casually brought into our discourses, is incidentally touched upon, and that is all. Prophecies have been dwelt upon, doctrines have been expounded; but that which is essential to the church in order that they may grow in spiritual strength and efficiency, in order that the preaching may carry conviction with it, and souls be converted to God, has been largely left out of ministerial effort. This subject has been set aside, as if some time in the future would be given to its consideration. Other blessings and privileges have been presented before the people until a desire has been awakened in the church for the attainment of the Blessing promised of God . . .      But the impression concerning the Holy Spirit has been that this gift is not for the church now, but that at some time in the future it would be necessary for the church to receive it.  {TM 174.1}

All Other Blessings Found in One . . .

     This promised Blessing, if claimed by faith (Galatians 3:14), would bring all other blessings in its train, and it is to be given liberally to the people of God. Through the cunning devices of the enemy the minds of God’s people seem to be incapable of comprehending and appropriating the promises of God. They seem to think that only the scantiest showers of grace are to fall upon the thirsty soul.      The people of God have accustomed themselves to think that they must rely upon their own efforts, that little help is to be received from heaven; and the result is that they have little Light to communicate to other souls who are dying in error and darkness.

     The church has long been contented with little of the Blessing (Spirit-filled promises, John 6:63) of God; they have not felt the need of reaching up to the exalted privileges purchased for them at infinite cost. Their spiritual strength has been feeble, their experience of a dwarfed and crippled character, and they are disqualified for the work the Lord would have them to do (Mark 16:15-20). They are not able to present the great and glorious Truths (unfailing verity) of God’s Holy Word that would convict and convert souls through the agency of the Holy Spirit.

The power of God awaits their demand and reception. A harvest of joy will be reaped by those who sow the holy seeds of Truth.He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him !” – Testimonies to Ministers, p.174

The Mighty Power of God –

peter-john-and-lame-man-1426804-printWhy Not Now ?
BYJ.E.SWIFT

     THERE was a time when the servants of God had power with Him, and prevailed. In the first century, when the disciples of Jesus prayed, the earth trembled (Acts 4 : 31), and the Holy Spirit, like a flaming tongue of fire, rested upon them. Acts 2:3. When they preached a risen Saviour, men’s hard hearts melted, and they inquired, “Men and brethren, what shall we do ?” Acts 2:37.

     There was a time when those who were diseased sought unto the Mighty Healer, instead of sending for the vender of pills and powders; and when a humble fisherman could stand by the side of the lifeless form and say, “Tabitha, arise,” and the dead would live again. Acts 9:40.

     These things were common once; why not now ? Where does the Bible tell us that they must cease to be? —Nowhere.   On the contrary. Jesus tells us that “these signs shall follow them that believe.” He says, “In My name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up* (loose the hold of) serpents; and if they shall drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them.” Mark 16:17-18.

     Again: “He that believeth on Me (the Word of God), the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do, because I go unto My Father . . . !”   John 14:12

     These promises are sure to them that believe. Brethren, the trouble with many of us is that we do not have faith. We ought to be thankful that God in his infinite mercy has bestowed upon us as a people some of the precious gifts of his Spirit; but He is willing to bestow upon us all the gifts of His Spirit just as soon as we place ourselves in a position where He can consistently do so.      Let us search our hearts in the light of His Word and the testimonies of His Spirit, and let us return unto God, and see if He will not return unto us. The work is fast closing up. Soon the night cometh, wherein no man can work. We mean to be whole-hearted sometime; why not now ?

The Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, Nov. 28, 1882

Chosen in Him . . . ?

ascension     There has been one promise of Scripture which the Lord Jesus Christ has been bringing to my remembrance repeatedly over the last few months. It is found in John 8:31-32, where He tells us . . . “You shall know the Truth, and the Truth shall make you free !”

And then I remember Christ’s prayer in the garden, when He cries to our Father on our behalf, and says . . . “Sanctify them through Thy Truth, Yea, Thy Word is Truth !”     John 17:17

In the original greek of the text, the word “Truth” literally means Verity, (verily so) !

So what Christ Jesus is really promising to each of us, is that we shall know the Truth, and the Truth (the unfailing verity of His Word) shall make us free . . . “For whom the Son makes free, shall be free indeed !”
John 8:33-36

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The Gift of the Spirit & Life ?

Wells of Salvation     “Therefore with Joy shall ye draw Water out of the Wells of Salvation . . . and in that day ye shall say, Praise the LORD (Halleluyah !),  call upon His name, declare His doings (wondrous works) among the people . . . . For great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst (heart) of thee . . . !”     Isaiah 12:1-6

“Before He left His disciples, Christ “breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost.” John 20:22. Again He said, “Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you.” Luke 24:49. But not until after the ascension was the Gift received in its fullness.

     Not until through faith and prayer the disciples had surrendered themselves fully for His working was the outpouring of the Spirit received. Then in a special sense the goods (riches) of heaven were committed to the followers of Christ. “When He ascended up on high, He led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.” Ephesians 4:8. “Unto every one of us is given Grace* (G5485), according to the measure of the gift of Christ (The Anointed One, the Anointing),” the Spirit “dividing to every man severally as He will.”                                ref: Ephesians 4:7; 1 Corinthians 12:11.

The gifts are already ours in Christ, but their actual possession depends upon our reception of the Spirit of God.”

– Christ Object Lessons p.327 Continue reading

Showers of Grace in the time of the Latter Rain ?

John 1624 leaf     “Ask ye of the LORD (Jehovah, Yehuwah) rain in the time of the Latter Rain; so the Lord shall make bright (flashing, lightning) clouds, and give them showers of Rain, to every one grass in the field.”     Zechariah 10:1

“He shall come down like Rain upon the mown grass: as Showers that watereth the earth. And in His days shall the righteous flourish . . . If ye love Me, keep My commandments. And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another (more) Comforter . . . . I will not leave you Comfortless . . . I will come to you !”
Psalm 72:6 & John 14:12-20

Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the Words of My mouth. For My doctrine (teaching, instrcutions) shall drop as the Rain, and My speech shall distil as the dew . . . As the small Rain upon the tender herb, and as the Showers upon the grass . . . !”     Deuteronomy 32:1-2

“Hitherto have ye asked nothing in My name (in My authority, because of My merits, My righteousness) . . . Ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full . . . !”          John 16:24
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And I will pour out My Spirit !

And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out My
Spirit
upon all flesh; and your
sons and your daughters shall prophesy (speak under Inspiration), your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions !”     Joel 2:28

The outpouring of the Spirit in the days of the apostles was the “Former Rain;” and glorious was the result. But the “Latter Rain” will be still more abundant. What is the Promise to those living in these
last days
? — Continue reading