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2 Peter 1:12

Dear Readers,

September 2010

“Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Corinthians 1:2). I pray that you are doing well and that each day is filled with experiences that draw you closer to our heavenly Father and His dear Son. 

Update on Everitte: Last month we asked you to pray for Everitte. We received word that his tumor has shrunk 50% and he is feeling better. Praise God! 

In this Issue

What Must I do to be Saved?

by Lynnford Beachy

Something for the Young at Heart
Update on the Hershbergers You May Freely Eat

by Jim Raymond

The National Sunday Law (Part 21)

by Alonzo T. Jones

Sin Shall Not Have Dominion (Part 1)

by Charles Fitch

The Gospel in Creation (Part 19)

by Ellet J. Waggoner


What Must I Do to be Saved? 

by Lynnford Beachy 

Have you ever felt like you are at the end of your rope? I have been there! I was addicted to drugs and living for sin. I thought that nobody cared for me and that my life was worthless. I expected to die and go to hell, and I really didn’t care. I figured that God didn’t care about me, so why should I care about Him? I planned to waste the rest of my life on drugs and sin and I didn’t care what happened after that. 

God, in His love for me, didn’t want to leave me in that condition. He longed to make His love for me known on a personal level. One day, when I was holding a drug party at my apartment, out of the blue, God revealed His love for me and His desire for me to live with Him forever. This took me by surprise because I had no desire to turn to God, and I was not contemplating it. I was struck with the realization that God cares for me personally, that this world is coming to an end, and that if I didn’t turn around I was going to hell. 

This all hit me in an instant with tremendous urgency. I was in my bedroom at the time, and I came out to the living room and began preaching to my friends that we needed to stop doing drugs, stop listening to satanic music, and turn our lives over to God because the Lord is coming soon, and He doesn’t want us to go to hell. I did not have a Bible and did not know much about it, but I shared what I knew. My friends thought I had gone off the deep end, that I had lost my mind. One of them told me that he worshiped the devil and that he was going to kill me. I laughed at him, saying, “What good is that going to do for you? Are you going to get a higher rank in hell?” 

From that night on I determined to give my life to God and serve Him. I had some very difficult experiences to endure in the transition from serving the devil to serving God, but the Lord carried me through them all, and I have never regretted the decision to serve Him. I tried to reform my life. I told all my friends that I had quit drugs and drinking, but I found myself doing them again even though I didn’t want to do them. Each failure gave me a terrible sense of guilt. I wanted to do good, but I had no power to do it. 

My dad pointed me to a promise in the Bible that changed my life. God said, “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them” (Ezekiel 36:26, 27). My dad encouraged me to pray to God and ask Him to give me a new heart, and invite Jesus into my life. He told me that I would not feel anything happen, but that if I continued to believe that God would honor His promise, after a few days I would notice that there was a change. It happened exactly as my dad had described. That was the beginning of my new life in Christ. 

Different drugs give you differing degrees of feeling “high,” but none of them can compare to the “high” I feel from knowing that my sins are forgiven and there is no barrier between me and God. I finally had power in my life, and I have never taken drugs again. 

I was nineteen years old when that happened, and it has now been nineteen years since that experience. I am so thankful for the new life that God has given me, and I am confident that He can do the same for you. 

Requirements for Salvation 

What does God require of you to be saved? Do you have to make a pilgrimage, or do penance? Do you have to prove you are good enough to be accepted? Certainly not! God will accept you just as you are. Jesus has promised, “Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37). Jesus “is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them” (Hebrews 7:25). This means that Jesus is willing and able to save you no matter what you have done, no matter how evil or worthless you think you are. God is “not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). He says, “As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die…?” (Ezekiel 33:11). 

Some have mistakenly thought that God will not accept them unless they are good. They try to reform their lives to make themselves good so that God will accept them. Friends, that can never happen. You cannot change yourself and make yourself good. The Bible says, “Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil” (Jeremiah 13:23). The Bible also says, “Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one” (Job 14:4). Jesus said, “For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit; neither doth a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. For every tree is known by his own fruit. For of thorns men do not gather figs, nor of a bramble bush gather they grapes. A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh” (Luke 6:43-45). 

A Parable 

God spoke a parable about us saying, “When I passed by thee, and saw thee polluted in thine own blood, I said unto thee when thou wast in thy blood, Live; yea, I said unto thee when thou wast in thy blood, Live… Now when I passed by thee, and looked upon thee, behold, thy time was the time of love; and I spread my skirt over thee, and covered thy nakedness: yea, I sware unto thee, and entered into a covenant with thee, saith the Lord GOD, and thou becamest mine. Then washed I thee with water; yea, I throughly washed away thy blood from thee, and I anointed thee with oil” (Ezekiel 16:6-9). 

The blood in this parable represents our sins (Isaiah 1:18). When God saw us we were polluted in our own sinful lives. He said unto us, while we were still polluted in our own sins, “Live.” This is God offering us eternal life; this is salvation. This comes to us while we are still polluted in our own sins. Then God says that we became His. He calls us His children, we are part of the family of God. Keep in mind that this is still while we are polluted in our own blood. Afterwards, He washes away our sins from us. When I accepted Christ, He accepted me as I was, and I was immediately forgiven of my sins, but there were a lot of things in my life (most of which were unknown to me at the time) that still needed to be cleaned. 

Friends, we can never make ourselves clean. God is the only one who can do this. If we wait to come to God until we think we are good enough, we will wait forever. We must come to Him while we are still polluted and filthy. God accepts us as we are, and then He begins the cleansing process. We receive salvation just as we are. 

Salvation is a Free Gift 

The Bible says, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8). Salvation is called a gift. If you give your child a gift, and he says, “I would like to pay for it,” how would you feel? The moment a person pays for a gift, it is no longer a gift. A gift cannot be purchased. “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23). 

Salvation cannot be earned, it is freely given. We are “justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:24). “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32). God gave all of this for you! He loves you personally, so fully that if you were the only one alive on earth, He would have sent His Son to die for you even while you were a rebel. “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). God says, “I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee” (Jeremiah 31:3). 

One night, Paul and Silas were beaten and thrown into a prison. “And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them. And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands were loosed. And the keeper of the prison awaking out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open, he drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled. But Paul cried with a loud voice, saying, Do thyself no harm: for we are all here. Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas, And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway” (Acts 16:25-33). 

When this jailor was at the end of his rope, he cried out to Paul asking him, “What must I do to be saved?” Paul replied, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved…” There is no list of requirements for salvation, but simply one thing is required, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. When I asked Jesus into my life and God to create in me a clean heart, all I had to do is believe that He did it, and I received the free gift. 

Paul wrote, “If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Romans 10:9, 10). 

When you accept this free gift of salvation things will certainly change in your life. The Bible says, “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God…” (2 Corinthians 5:17). When I accepted Christ my whole attitude toward life changed. The things I once loved, I now hated, and the things I once hated I now loved. You may not want to give your life to God now because you think that you will have to give up everything you enjoy, and life will be miserable. I used to think this way. What I didn’t realize is that God changes your desires, so that the evil things you like will become distasteful to you, and the good things you despise will become a delight. 

Jesus said, through the Psalmist, “I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart” (Psalms 40:8). The New Covenant that God promises to make with you is, “I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more” (Hebrews 10:16, 17). When God’s law is in your heart, you, too, will delight to do God’s will; God’s law will be fulfilled in you. “The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death… That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit” (Romans 8:2, 4). 

Good works will naturally come as a result of receiving Jesus Christ into your life, but those works do not save you, they are a result of your salvation. Paul wrote, “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour… These things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men” (Titus 3:5-8). 

My friends, God dearly loves you, and He earnestly wants to spend eternity with you. Please accept His free gift of salvation, and ask Him to live in your heart. It is the best decision you will ever make! 

(This article is available in tract form. If you would like copies to share with your friends, please let us know.    Editor

Update on Abraham Hershberger’s Family 

In the June 2010 issue of Present Truth we published a special article informing you of the destruction of Abraham Hershberger’s home and most of his family’s temporal goods. 

Due to the blessing of God through his people, over $30,000 was donated and so the matching funds were all achieved and even more has been sent to help! 

The Hershbergers are still living on the same property in a tent, but they have looked at a piece of property they hope to buy. They plan to continue camping until they can get property and build a house which they hope to accomplish before winter sets in. 

Please keep this dear family in prayer, and if you would still like to help, there are still more needs. For more information on how to donate to this dear family please see the website: www.helpthehershbergers.com. You may write them directly at: 3344 Hwy 438, Pleasantville, Tennessee 37033. Thank you so much for your help. 

The National Sunday Law (Part 21) 

by Alonzo T. Jones 

(The following is the final portion of an argument of Alonzo T. Jones before The United States Senate, December 13, 1888, opposing the Blair Bill that promoted a Sunday law.  Editor

Appendix A 

THE American Sabbath Union in its “Monthly Documents,” has tried to make it appear that, in my argument before the Senate Committee, I admitted the right of the Government to make Sunday laws for the public good. The effort was not only made by the Association in its own documents, but the document and statements were reprinted in Our Day. To counteract the influence of this effort, as well as to make the point yet clearer, if possible, and expose another method which the Sunday-law workers employ to secure support for their movement, I insert the following: 

Open Letter 

To the Rev. J. H. Knowles, Secretary of the American Sabbath Union. 

DEAR SIR: In the monthly documents of the American Sunday Association, edited by yourself, you have chosen to charge me with insincerity; and you have also done your best to make it appear that I “admit all that the friends of the Sunday-rest law generally claim — the right of the Government to make Sunday laws for the public good.” 

You have garbled extracts from the report of my speech before the Senate Committee on the Sunday law, and then have italicized certain words and sentences in one passage to try to make it appear that I admit the right of the Government to make Sunday laws for the public good. 

You have quoted from my speech the following words in the following way: 

“Whenever any civil government attempts to enforce anything in regard to any one of the first four commandments, it invades the prerogative of God, and is to be disobeyed (I do not say resisted, but disobeyed)… . The State, in its legislation, can never legislate properly in regard to any man’s religious faith, or in relation to anything in the first four commandments of the decalogue; but if in the exercise of his religious convictions under the first four commandments he invades the rights of his neighbor, then the civil government says that is unlawful. Why? Because it is irreligious or because it is immoral? — Not at all; but because it is uncivil, and for that reason only. [Italics ours: ED]” 

It is in the italicizing of these words that your effort is made to make me admit what I continually and consistently denied before the committee, and do deny everywhere else. You have inserted in the above quotation three periods, indicating that a portion has been left out; and you know full well, sir, that in the portion which is there left out, is the following: 

Senator Blair: — ‘You oppose all the Sunday laws of the Country, then?’ 

Mr. Jones: ‘Yes, sir.’ 

Senator Blair: ‘You are against all Sunday laws?’ 

Mr. Jones: ‘Yes, sir; we are against every Sunday law that was ever made in this world, from the first enacted by Constantine to this one now proposed.’ 

Senator Blair: ‘State and national alike?’ 

Mr. Jones: ‘State and national, sir.’” 

Not only were these words there, but in that portion which you have printed following the italicized words, you yourself have printed my plain denial of the right of any nine hundred and ninety-nine people out of a thousand to compel the thousandth man to rest on the day on which the majority rest, in the following from: 

Senator Blair: ‘The majority has a right to rule in what pertains to the regulation of society; and if Caesar regulates society, then the majority has a right in this country to say what shall be rendered to Caesar.’ 

Mr. Jones: ‘If nine hundred and ninety-nine people out of every thousand in the United States kept the seventh day, that is, Saturday, and I deemed it my choice and right to keep Sunday, I would insist on it, and they would have no right to compel me to rest on Saturday.” 

Senator Blair: ‘In other words, you take the grounds that for the good of society, irrespective of the religious aspect of the question, society may not require abstinence from labor on the Sabbath, if it disturbs others?’ 

Mr. Jones: ‘No, sir.’ 

Senator Blair: ‘You are logical all the way through that there shall be no Sabbath.’” 

That last expression of mine, saying “No, sir,” is in accord, and was intended when spoken to be in accord, with Senator Blair’s inquiring statement whether society may not require abstinence from labor on the Sabbath. My answer there means, and when it was spoken it was intended to mean, that society may not do so. As to its disturbing others, I had just before proved that the common occupations of men who choose to work on Sunday or any other day do not disturb and cannot disturb the rest of the majority who choose to rest that day. 

Again: A little farther along you print another passage in which are the following words: 

Senator Blair: You would abolish any Sabbath in human practice which shall be in the form of law, unless the individual here and there sees fit to observe it?’ 

Mr. Jones: ‘Certainly; that is a matter between man and his God.’” 

Now, I should like for you in a monthly document, or by some other means, to show how by any fair means, or by any sincere purpose, you can, even by the use of italics, make in that speech admit the right of the Government to make Sunday laws for the public good. You know, sir, that in that speech I distinctly stated that any human laws for the enforcement of the Sabbath, instead of being “for the good of society, are for the ruin of society.” 

Again: You know, for you printed it in one of your documents, that Senator Blair said to me: “You are logical all the way through that there shall be no Sabbath.” You know that in another place he said again to me: “You are entirely logical, because you say there should be no Sunday legislation by State or nation either.” 

Now, sir, I repeat, you have charged me with insincerity. Anyone making such a charge as that ought to be sincere. Will you, therefore, explain upon what principle it is that you claim to be sincere in this thing, when in the face of these positive and explicit statements to the contrary and Senator Blair’s confirmation of them to that effect, you can deliberately attempt to force into my words a meaning that was never there, that was never intended to be there, and that never can by any honest means be put there? 

More than this: It can hardly be thought that Senator Blair will very highly appreciate the compliment that you have paid to his logical discernment, when in the fact of his repeated statement that I was logical all the way through, you force into my words a meaning that could have no other effect than to make me illogical all the way through. 

I have no objection to your printing my words as they were spoken; but I do object to your forcing into them a meaning directly contrary to that which the words themselves convey, and which they were intended to convey; and I further object to your so garbling my statements as to make it possible for you to force into them a meaning that they never can honestly be made to bear. 

In that speech also I said that if an idol-worshiper in this country should attempt to offer a human sacrifice, the Government should protect the life of its subject from the exercise of that man’s religion; that he has the right to worship any idol that he chooses, but that he has not the right to commit murder in the worship of his idol, and the State forbids the murder without any reference at all to the question as to whether that man is religious or whether he worships or not, with no reference at all to the commandment which forbids idol-worship, and with no thought whatever of forbidding his idolatry. I stated also that if anybody claiming apostolic example should practice community of property, and in carrying out that practice should take your property or mine without our consent, the State would forbid the theft without any reference at all to the man’s religious opinions, and with no thought of forbidding the practice of community of property. You know that it was with direct reference to these words that I used the words which you have italicized. I there distinctly denied that the State can ever of right legislate in relation to anything in the first four commandments of the decalogue. But, if any man in the exercise of his rights under the first four commandments, and in this case under the fourth commandment, should invade the right of his neighbor, as I have expressed it, by endangering his life, his liberty, or his property, or attack his character, or invade his rights in any way, the government has the right to prohibit it, because of the incivility; but with never any question as to whether the man is religious or irreligious, and with never a purpose or a thought of forbidding the free exercise of any man’s right to work on any day or all days, as he chooses. 

This is precisely what every State in this Union already does by statutes which punish disturbances of religious worship or religious meetings, or peaceable assemblies of any sort. But there is a vast difference between such statutes as these and the ones which you desire shall be enacted. These are strictly civil statutes, prohibiting incivility, and are far from anything like the enforcement of religious observances. The Sunday-law workers complain of the disturbance of their worship on Sunday. If they are sincere in this, why don’t they enforce the laws already on the statute books prohibiting disturbance of worship? California, for instance, prohibits disturbance of worship, under penalty of five hundred dollars’ fine and six months in jail. But instead of having such legitimate laws enforced, you propose to prohibit the disturbance of your worship on Sunday by compelling everybody to keep Sunday. Upon this same principle you would have the State forbid the offering of human sacrifices by an idol worshiper, by compelling him to keep the second commandment. In short, the principle is that you would have the State prohibit incivility by compelling everybody to be religious. And you are so enraptured with this distorted view, that you have chosen in your sincerity and by italics to force me to sanction the wicked principle. But it will not work. I say always, If your worship is disturbed on Sunday or at any other time, let the State punish the person or persons who create the disturbance. Let the State punish them by such strictly legitimate statutes as the States already have on this subject. But let the State never attempt to prohibit disturbance of worship by trying to compel men to worship, nor attempt to prohibit incivility by enforcing religious observances. This is just what I had in view, and is precisely what I meant, in the words which you have italicized. 

All this is further shown in the argument which I made, in that, immediately following the words which you have italicized I proved that Sunday work does not disturb the rest or the worship of those who keep Sunday. And the conclusion of that is, therefore, that there is no basis for Sunday laws on that ground. This I prove by the fact that the people who make this the ground of their demand for Sunday laws, do not recognize for an instant that work on Saturday disturbs the rest or the worship of the people who keep Saturday. I there showed that if your work on Saturday does not disturb my rest or my worship, my work on Sunday cannot disturb your rest or your worship. I made this argument not only on this principle, but from actual experience. I know, from an experience of fifteen years, that other people’s work on Saturday does not disturb either my rest or my worship on that day. There are Seventh-day Adventists in every State and Territory of this nation, in Canada, nearly every country of Europe, the Sandwich Islands, Australia, South America, China, South Africa, and other places. They all rest every Saturday; they all keep it as the Sabbath unto the Lord. But no person has ever yet head of a Seventh-day Adventist who ever complained that his rest on the Sabbath was disturbed by other men’s work. Not only is this so, but the Seventh-day Adventists have organized churches in the great majority of the States and Territories of this Union. These churches are found in country places, in villages, in towns, and in cities. They meet for worship every Saturday; and although, as everybody knows, Saturday is the busiest day of the week, in the midst of such busy cities as Chicago, Denver, San Francisco, Minneapolis, and Kansas City, these churches of Seventh-day Adventists assemble regularly for worship; and no person has ever yet heard of any Seventh-day Adventists’ making a complaint that their worship was disturbed by the work, the business, or the traffic that is carried on by other people on that day. The fact is, our worship is not disturbed by these things. 

Now, sir, if all the labor, the business, and the traffic that is done on Saturday, the day which is acknowledged by all to be the busiest day of the week: if all this, In such cities as I have named, does not disturb our rest or our worship, will you please explain how it is that your rest and your worship are disturbed on Sunday, when there is not one-thousandth part as much labor, or business, or traffic done on that day as is done on Saturday? 

This, dear sir, is only an additional argument, but one which rests on the living experience of thousands of people every seventh day, conclusively showing that your whole theory and claim for Sunday laws break down utterly at every point. ALONZO T. Jones. 

Appendix B 

THE following letter from Cardinal Gibbons to Mr. D. E. Lindsey, of Baltimore, shows from the Cardinal himself, that the counting of all the Roman Catholics of the country in favor of the Sunday law on the Cardinal’s indorsement, as Dr. Crafts and the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union have done, was wholly unwarranted. This is exactly as I argued before the Senate Committee, and as we have argued everywhere else. We have never blamed Cardinal Gibbons for that which Dr. Crafts and the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union put upon him. 

“Cardinal’s Residence, 408 North Charles St., Baltimore, MD., Feb. 27, 1889. 

“MY DEAR SIR: In reply to your favor dated Feb. 25, 1889, duly received, His Eminence Cardinal Gibbons desires me to write to you, that whatsoever countenance His Eminence has given to the ‘Sunday law’ referred to in your favor, as he had not the authority, so he had not the intention, of binding the archbishops, the bishops, or the Catholic laity of the United States. His Eminence bids me say to you that he was moved to write a letter favoring the passage of the bill, mainly from a consideration of the rest and recreation which would result to our poor overworked fellow-citizens, and of the facility which it would then afford them of observing the Sunday in a religious and decorous way. 

“It is incorrect to assume that His Eminence, in the alleged words of Senator Blair set forth in your favor ‘singed the bill, thus pledging seven million, two hundred thousand Catholics as indorsing the bill.’ 

“I have the honor to remain, with much respect yours faithfully, J. P. Donahue, Chancellor.” 

(To D. E. Lindsey, Esq., 708 Rayner Avenue, Baltimore, MD). 

(This article was taken from pages 184-192 of the book entitled, The National Sunday Law, by Alonzo T. Jones. Some editing was done for this publication.    Editor

The Gospel in Creation (Part 19) 

by Ellet J. Waggoner 

(This is the final portion of this study. I pray that it has been a blessing.  Editor

During the six days God has been speaking the words that brought the earth to its perfect condition. Then He rested. He ceased speaking, and His word, which liveth and abideth forever, continued to uphold that which was created. So God rested upon His word. He could rest from the work of creation in perfect confidence that His word would uphold the universe. So when we keep the Sabbath of the Lord, we simply take the rest that comes from settling down upon the promises of God. 

Thus it is that “we which have believed do enter into rest.” And he that hath entered into rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from His. Before men fully accept the simple word of the Lord, everything is from self. The works of the flesh are only sin; and even though men profess to serve God and have earnest desires to do right, their own works to that end are failures. “All our righteousnesses are as filthy rags” Isaiah 64:6. But when we realize the power of the word of God and know that it is able to build up those who trust it, then we cease our own works and allow God to work in us, both to will and to do of His good pleasure. Then all our works are wrought in Him, and they are right. This is indeed rest. The rest that comes when we realize that salvation does not come from ourselves but from the word which made the heavens and the earth and which upholds them, is the rest which the Sabbath brings to us when it is kept as the Lord designs. 

Notice that we are to remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. It is holy, and so we are to keep it. We are not to make it holy, for that would be impossible; only God could do that. No act of ours can add to, or detract from, its holiness. Neither are we to make ourselves holy, so that we may keep it properly. That we could not do. But the same power that sanctified the Sabbath day will sanctify us. That power is the power that made the universe. It is creative power by which we are to be sanctified, for Christ is the Creator, and He is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption. God has given us the Sabbath—the memorial of His creative power—that we may know that He is the God that sanctifies us. 

This is the rest that Christ gives to all that come to Him. He says, “Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls” (Matthew 11:28, 29). We are to come and rest upon the word that upholds the universe. This is what the Sabbath means. It commemorates creation; but redemption is simply the power that created all things, working to restore them. So the Sabbath marks the highest gospel attainments. 

We have seen that the Sabbath was given in Eden, and that it is a part of that rest upon which God entered. When kept in spirit and in truth, it is a bit of Eden preserved for us through all the changes wrought by the curse. And as God made not the earth in vain, but formed it to be inhabited by the same class of people whom He first placed upon it, so it will yet be. Therefore, the Sabbath is not only a portion of the original Eden preserved for us, but it is also identical with that rest that will be enjoyed by the saints of God throughout eternity. Heaven does indeed begin upon earth for those who fully accept the Saviour, and who give themselves to Him without reserve. The Sabbath—a fragment of paradise—spans the chasm from Eden lost till Eden restored, and as it is the memorial of the first, it is the pledge of the second. 

Is not the Sabbath, then, indeed a delight? Can anyone who understands what it means regard it in any other light than a blessing? The man of God has given us a song for the Sabbath day, in which he shows how it is to be regarded, and what it is to do for us. “It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord, and to sing praises unto Thy name, O Most High: to show forth Thy lovingkindness in the morning, and Thy faithfulness every night, upon an instrument of ten strings, and upon the psaltery; upon the harp with a solemn sound. For Thou, Lord, hast made me glad through Thy work: I will triumph in the works of Thy hands” (Psalm 92:1-4). We are to be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. We are to be ofvercomers “through Him that loved us.” So when we are beset with temptation we have only to think of the power of God—the power that made the worlds from nothing—and know that it will be put forth for our deliverance if we will but accept it. Nothing is too hard for the Lord, and there is nothing able to withstand Him. All the hosts of Satan have no power when engaged in a contest with the Lord. Christ has “spoiled principalities and powers” (Colossians 2:15). So when we rest ourselves on that power, the victory is already won. The things that God has made remind us of His power, and so we triumph in the works of His hands. This glorious victory is what the Sabbath is intended to bring to us. 

So as the Sabbath is the sign of a perfect creation, it is the seal of a new creature in Christ. It is therefore the seal of God, ministered by the Spirit of God. As it came from paradise and is a part of the rest of paradise, so it shows that those who keep it in spirit (not in form merely) are, through the mighty power of God, destined for a place in paradise. And thus it will come to pass that, in the ages to come, when Eden is restored, all flesh shall come together from Sabbath to Sabbath to worship God, whose love and power and kindness in Christ have brought them to share the glories of His presence. And as they assemble on those thrice-blessed Sabbath days, they will sing, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing.” But the redeemed host will not be alone in their praises. All the works of God praise Him even now, while groaning and waiting for the redemption; but then, when every trace of the curse will have been removed and the gospel has brought back the original creation, “Every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them,” will in perfection unite as with one voice in saying, “Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb forever and ever” (Revelation 5:12, 13). 

(This article was taken from pages 171-176 of the book entitled, The Gospel in Creation, by Ellet J. Waggoner.  Editor

Something for the Young at Heart 

We would like to give you an interesting and easy way to study the Bible, so we are including a crossword puzzle for you. In order to maintain the flow of the study, this crossword puzzle is not split into Across and Down sections—Across or Down is indicated at the end of each line. (The KJV is required.) 

The Divinity of Christ (Part 4) 

Divinity of Christ (Part 4)

Christ’s Exalted Relationship to God 

  • Jesus asked the Pharisees, “What think ye of ____? whose son is he?” Matthew 22:42—12 Across 
  • “They say unto him, The Son of ____.” Matthew 22:42—2 Across 
  • Jesus replied, “How then doth David in spirit call him ____.” Matthew 22:43—15 Down 

Note: Jesus then quoted Psalm 110:1, claiming that David was speaking of the Son of God. 

  • Jesus asked, “If David then call him Lord, how is he his ____?” Matthew 22:45—17 Down 

Note: Jesus was elevating the minds of His hearers to see Christ as the divine Son of God, rather than only a human. 

  • The book of Proverbs asks, “Who hath established all the ends of the earth? what is his ____, and what is his son’s ____, if thou canst tell?” Proverbs 30:4—4 Down 

Note: Here the divine relationship between the Father and His Son is demonstrated to have existed long before Jesus was born in Bethlehem. 

  • God said, “Awake, O sword, against my ____.” Zechariah 13:7—1 Down 
  • “…against the man that is my ____.” Zechariah 13:7—10 Across 

Note: Here the most high God speaks of someone who is His fellow. This shows that the Son has a unique position as the only person who shares the same classification of being as God, the Father. 

  • Paul speaks of Christ as “The Lord ____ heaven.” 1 Corinthians 15:47— 10 Down 
  • Jesus said of Himself, “the Son of man is Lord even of the ____ day.” Matthew 12:8—7 Across 
  • Wishing to show His exalted position, Jesus said, when healing a sick man, “thy sins are ____ thee.” Luke 5:20—8 Down 
  • Jesus said this so “that ye may know that the Son of man hath ____ upon earth to forgive sins.” Luke 5:24— 18 Across 

Note: Regardless of what a Catholic priest may claim about his abilities to forgive sins, only a divine being has this authority. No man can possibly forgive sins committed against God, no more than I could forgive you for something you did to your father. The injured party must be the one who grants forgiveness. Regarding sins against God, only God can forgive sins. 

  • Paul wrote of Christ, “he is ____ all things, and by him all things consist.” Colossians 1:17—16 Across 
  • Christ is “upholding all things by the ____ of his power.” Hebrews 1:3— 11 Down 
  • Jesus Christ is “so much better than the ____.” Hebrews 1:4—19 Across 
  • “He hath by ____ obtained a more excellent name than they.” Hebrews 1:4—3 Down 

Note: A name obtained by inheritance must be a name shared by both the Father and the Son. 

  • The LORD appeared unto Abraham “in the plains of ____.” Genesis 18:1—5 Across 

Note: Whenever the word LORD appears in all capital letters in the KJV, the name of God, Yahweh, was used in the original Hebrew text. 

  • After visiting with Abraham the two angels “turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham ____ yet before the LORD.” Genesis 18:22—1 Across 

Note: The LORD who appeared to Abraham, and who spoke with him face to face was Jesus Christ, the Son of God. We know it was not God, the Father, for He said, “Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live” (Exodus 33:20). The Bible also tells us, “No man hath seen God at any time” (John 1:18). 

  • The angel of the LORD appeared unto Moses “in a ____ of fire out of the midst of a bush.” Exodus 3:2— 14 Across 
  • When Moses approached, he was told, “Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is ____ ground.” Exodus 3:5—9 Across 
  • This Person told Moses, “I am the ____ of thy father, the ____ of Abraham, the ____ of Isaac, and the ____ of Jacob.” Exodus 3:6—13 Across 

Note: The Hebrew word that was translated “angel” means, “messenger.” This word does not always refer to the particular order of being called “angels.” A messenger can be anyone who brings a message on behalf of someone else. Men are called messengers (angels), as well as Jesus Christ, Himself. He is the chief messenger of God, for “His name is called the Word of God” (Revelation 19:13). He is called “the messenger [angel] of the covenant” (Malachi 3:1). 

  • When Stephen spoke of this event years later he said, “And when forty years were expired, there appeared to him in the ____ of mount Sina an angel of the Lord in a flame of fire in a bush.” Acts 7:30—6 Down 

Note: This “angel of the Lord” was not an angelic being, but Jesus Christ Himself who received worship from Moses, and even commanded him to remove his shoes. 

Answers to Last Month's Crossword

Divinity of Christ (Part 3) - Answers

You May Freely Eat? 

by Jim Raymond 

(Brother Jim Raymond has been a food scientist for many years, and has agreed to share some of his knowledge with us.    Editor

Color Me Whole Wheat Please 

A few short years ago I worked on a project to develop an all natural, high fiber, whole wheat bread roll formula and process for hospital patients. The product had to withstand the rigors of industrial refrigeration without the benefit of food additives to maintain freshness. Most bread made using a conventional process, and without preservatives and additives, enters the “staling” phase in about three days on the grocer’s shelves. My bakery sciences mentor tells me that this is the origin of the term “day-old bread.” This is one term that was born before I was! Surely, at one point in history they told the truth about the product’s age and called it “three-day old bread,” and at some point the “three” was dropped (perhaps it was a marketing ploy). 

Day-old bread has more structure than fresh, and was prized for toasting and use in recipes (as bread crumbs or pieces) for holding things together and providing shape (to patties or balls, for baking or frying), and structure and stability to sweet or savory items (like bread pudding and strata). Staled bread may even wind up as a fermented, non-alcoholic beverage similar to the popular Russian product called Kvass. 

Without additives, conventional bread products stale about six times faster in refrigeration temperatures than at room temperatures. So half a day in the fridge could degrade the eating quality and qualify it for the title of “day-old.” There are natural ways to formulate and process bread dough that extends the freshness even in refrigeration, but it requires different steps and more time invested—especially in fermentation (leavening). This is what we did to help the hospital provide natural whole-food breads to their patients with fresh eating qualities in spite of it spending a fair amount of time sitting on a tray in a refrigerator. Imagine our surprise when patients and staff alike said they loved the taste and texture of the new breads, BUT they wanted “healthier bread with whole wheat” in it. It wasn’t brown enough. Truth is that our formula was bran fortified with about fifteen percent more wheat bran and wheat germ than is in whole wheat. In essence, we gave them 115% whole wheat bread. Devoid of the caramel (burnt sugar) browning agent, and not over baked, our whole wheat bread was slightly ruddy in coloration. This truth was not acceptable. Reluctantly the production team had to tell the lie the consumers wanted to see—and we added a browning additive. 

Our continued disconnection from the agricultural source of our food supply (see “You May Freely Eat?” July 2010) allows the unscrupulous manufacturer to advantage from our ignorance and bilks us into thinking that using more brown coloring additive equates to a more wholesome product. This, in turn, forces the scrupulous wholesome food manufacturer to use the browning additive because people will not buy his naturally superior product because it does not look enough like whole wheat. 

Do you see a parallel here? “For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear.” (2 Timothy 4:3, New Living Translation ©2007). 

Several times, in the blazing light of the truth in God’s plain testimony, I have had to let go of a teaching I picked up from a cherished pastor or from one or another of the denominated religious systems. 

The simple chart below will help you understand extraction and composition ratios for wheat flour ingredients on bakery product labels. 

Flour Type 

Procedure and Yield 


White Flour 

70% extraction 

One hundred pounds of wheat berries run through the mill yield 70 pounds of white flour for breads, cakes, cereals, and the like. 

Thirty pounds of bran and germ is removed from the wheat berries, and separated from the flour. Among other things, the bran and germ by-products are used in cereals or animal feed. 

Whole Wheat Flour 

100% extraction 

One hundred pounds of wheat berries run through the mill yield 100 pounds of whole wheat flour. The flour still contains all of the bran and germ because it is not separated from the white part of the wheat, but is all ground (milled) and bagged together. 

“Wheat Flour” is often seen on labels. Sometimes this just means white flour. Amongst bakers it usually means a blend of flours where 60-70 pounds of white flour is mixed with 30-40 pounds of whole wheat flour. 

Whole Wheat Flour 

100% extraction 

Rather than being milled (ground) together, the wheat germ and bran layer (30% of the wheat by weight) is removed and separated from the white flour part (70%) of the wheat. After additional processing steps, all is mixed back together so that 100 pounds of wheat berries run through the mill yields 100 pounds of White Whole Wheat flour. 

 The 30 pounds of bran and germ is removed and suffers additional milling designed to greatly reduce the particle size until it is as fine as the white flour. This process makes the bran appear closer to white in color. Next the 30 pounds of fine bran and germ is reunited with the 70 pounds of white flour and thoroughly mixed together. 

I’ve heard the claim that our world is “The Theater of the Universe.” True or not, this thought often reminds me that many of the products on my grocer’s shelves seem as actors in such a theater where the Evil One is the stage director. 

The take-away practice points are: Buyer beware and aware! Read labels. 

They may be deceptive too, but they usually contain enough information to raise questions like; “Why does this product have food color in it?” “Does it add nutritive value, or is it just ‘makeup’ to cover up something this actor is doing?” 

Look for products that seem to be “type cast” with only a few and obviously valuable ingredients. For example, grapefruit juice that does not contain Carmine or Cochineal (insect colorant additives (see “You May Freely Eat,” September 2009). Let the color be what the color is. 

Bring home the grain and cereal products that claim the most naturally whole-food ingredients. For example, “100% rolled oats.” Avoid those that are highly processed. They may quickly fill up your belly, but will they fill your cells with the best and most natural nutrients? This is the more critical question. 

When it comes to food additives, Less is always More! 

Blessings!  JR 

Sin Shall Not Have Dominion Over You (Part 1) 

by Charles Fitch 

(Charles Fitch was a pastor of the Free Presbyterian Church of Newark, NJ. In 1840 he wrote a series of letters to the headquarters of his church defending his belief in God’s power to save us from sin. Here are those letters.    Editor


The Lord Jesus Christ “Whom having not seen I love, in Whom, though now I see Him not, yet believing, I rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory” (1 Peter 1:8), has of late made good to me, vastly unworthy as I am, His own assurance, ‘he that loveth Me shall be loved of My Father and I will love him, and I will manifest Myself to him” (John 14:21). I feel that it would be base in me not to acknowledge, that through the amazing condescension of my Redeemer, He has made me to enjoy rich manifestations of His love. I speak of it to His praise, He has taught me to “be careful for nothing, but in everything, by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, to make my requests known unto God, and the peace of God, that passeth all understanding, has kept my heart and mind through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6, 7). 

Out of the abundance of my heart, my mouth has spoken (Luke 6:45), and I have given those who attend on my ministry to understand, that it is my belief, that God has “created in me a clean heart, and renewed a right spirit within me” (Psalms 51:10), that He has made me to know something of the blessedness of “the pure in heart” (Matthew 5:8). 

Some have thought that I was “bringing strange things to their ears,” and such a report went abroad. At a late meeting of the Presbytery, the brethren, with perfect propriety, and with the utmost kindness, desired of me that I would tell them, “what this new doctrine is.” I gave them a brief statement of my feelings and views, and answered as well as I was able several inquiries. The Presbytery, then, with perfect propriety, in my apprehension, appointed a committee to confer with me further on the subject. Of all this I fully approve. Soon after, I received a note from one of the committee, in which, in a kind and Christian like manner, he proposed the following questions, and requested an answer: 

1.    Do you believe that the Bible teaches, men are perfect in holiness in this life? (I ask no more than yes or no.) 

2.    What cases or characters were without sin in Bible history, except Christ? (Merely name them.) 

3.    Of all among the martyrs, whose memoirs have come down to us, how many do you find perfect? 

4.    In modern times, have not the best of men evidently been sinful more or less, and have they not thought themselves to be so? 

5.    In the circle of your acquaintance, have those who claimed perfection, generally turned out as well as those who feared always? 

6.    Are those around you who claim this, more meekly and heavenly than others? 

7.    Do not perfection people very frequently run into some palpable inconsistencies? 

8.    Do you avow the belief, that you are generally without sin, in thought, desire, word, deed, or defect? 

9.    And have you made up your mind, publicly to teach, and defend the position, that there are men among us who are without sin? 

I have taken this way to lay myself fully open to my brethren and to the world, because I believe it to be in all respects the easiest and the best; and do greatly rejoice in the opportunity afforded me, to testify to others of “the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in me, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27). I wish, by the grace of God, to be “a living epistle, known and read of all men” (2 Corinthians 3:2). It is my prayer, that God will enable others, as He has me, to say, “Behold God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid, for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song, He also is become my salvation.” And thus, “may they with joy draw water out of the wells of salvation, and say, praise the Lord” (Isaiah 12:2-4). And may “the redeemed of the Lord return and come with singing unto Zion, and everlasting joy be upon their heads; and may they obtain gladness and joy, and sorrow and mourning flee away” (Isaiah 51:11). Then shall the “joy of the Lord be our strength” (Nehemiah 8:10). 

Charles Fitch 

DEAR BROTHER, — In compliance with your request, and my promise, I will now endeavor, in the fear of God, and under sense of my accountableness to Him, to give you my views in full, respecting the points embraced in the questions which you proposed to me. I hope you will not consider it in any sense improper that I give you my views at large on the whole subject, instead of a mere categorical answer to your interrogations. I prefer the course I take, because I wish to present you with a view of the subject somewhat at large, as it lies before my own mind. Besides, I consider the subject too great, and the interests pending too important, to be disposed of in this summary way. I have no desire to conceal or evade anything, concerning which you or the Presbytery may wish to know of my views. My design is, as far as in me lies, to be full and explicit. 

But I fear that I might suffer much, through the misapprehension of others, respecting my own impressions of truth, if I were not to do something more than you propose in your communication. 

Allow me, therefore, to open my whole heart to you as a Christian brother should, and having done so, I will most cheerfully and gladly leave the even with Him on whom I have learned to cast all my cares (1 Peter 5:7), and whose glory is the only object for which I wish to live. On His guidance, who has said, “I will instruct thee, and teach thee, in the way which thou shalt go – I will instruct thee with Mine eye” (Psalms 32:8); and , “who of God is made unto me wisdom as well as righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption” (1 Corinthians 1:30), and who has said, “If any man lack wisdom, let him ask of God, Who giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not, and it shall be given him” (James 1:5); I now cast myself while I write. I shall give you such views of truth, and only such, as I feel most willing to meet in the great and dreadful day of account. 

I shall also give them, as far as possible, in scripture language, that it may be seen on what I rest my faith, and whether I do, or do not, pervert the Word of God. 

Permit me, then, to commence by saying that I find myself, in my natural state, a transgressor of God’s most holy and righteous law; so guilty as to deserve to be “punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power” (2 Thes- salonians 1:9). I also find myself totally unable to make the least atonement for one of all my ten thousand sins, or to find for one of them the least excuse or palliation. In myself, I stand, and must ever stand before the universe, a hopeless reprobate, irrecoverably bound over the damnation of hell. But I learn in the gospel, that the Lord Jesus Christ, by His atoning sacrifice, has rendered full satisfaction, to the justice of God for my sins, and thus opened a way whereby the punishment of my sins may be escaped, provided I have that “holiness without which no man can see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14). 

To be Continued… 

(This article was taken from pages 1-4 of the book entitled, “Sin Shall Not Have Dominion Over You,” by Charles Fitch.    Editor




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