White Raiment Evangelism
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May God richly bless you as you read this book, and learn of His wonderful love for you!
© Copyright 2017 John Foll.
First SmashWord Edition 01/25/2017.
You may freely copy this book or print it, providing you don’t charge money for it. In fact, we encourage you to do this! We want to spread the news of God’s love with this book. Thanks!
The articles in this book are extracts from books or letters that are in the public domain.
“Jesus answered and said to him, ‘If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him, and make Our abode with him.’” John 14:23 NASB.
In Revelation 3:18 Jesus said, “I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, and white raiment, and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest be clothed, that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear, and that thou mayest see.”
The purpose of this Blog is to teach righteousness by Faith, which is the key to pleasing God. Hebrews 11:6. When someone learns to believe in God fully, they are able to get the help they need to be happy and be victorious. This is an essential part of the life that God wants all of His people to have. When this is studied in its beauty, it leads to being born again, and filled with the Holy Spirit!
On this blog you will read many inspiring articles that will teach you how to have faith in God, so you can have life and peace. These articles will show you the secrets of how to have faith, which enables you to appropriate the promises of God, to make you victorious in this life and the life to come. And will help you to gain the other fruits of the Spirit: peace, love, and joy that you were meant to have, and have the power to live a righteous life.
In this book you will see all of the articles in this blog from its start in October 2016 to December 2016.
May God bless you as you read these article and let His Spirit touch your heart!
Monday, October 17, 2016
By E. J. Waggoner
In Rom. 1:17 the apostle Paul makes the following statement, “For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, The just shall live by faith.” This statement is the summing up of what the apostle has to say about the gospel in verse 16. The gospel is the power of God unto salvation, but only “to everyone that believeth;” in it the righteousness of God is revealed. The righteousness of God is the perfect law of God (Isa. 51:6, 7; Ps. 119:172), which is but the transcript of His righteous will (Ps. 40:7, 8). All unrighteousness is sin (1 John 5:17), or the transgression of the law (1 John 3:4; Rom. 7:7). The gospel is God’s remedy for sin; its work, therefore, must be to bring men into harmony with the law, — to cause the workings of the righteous law to be manifested in their lives. But this is wholly a work of faith,—the righteousness of God is revealed from “faith to faith,” — faith in the beginning, and faith to the end,—as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”
This is true in all ages since the fall of man, and will be true until the saints of God have His name in their foreheads, and see Him as He is. It was from the prophet Habakkuk (2:4) that the apostle quoted the statement. If the Prophets had not revealed it, the first Christians  could not have known of it; for they had only the Old Testament. To say that in the most ancient times men had but an imperfect idea of faith in Christ, is to say that there were no just men in those times. But Paul goes right back to the very beginning and cites an instance of saving faith. He says, “By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous.” Heb. 11:4. He says of Noah, also, that it was by faith that he built the ark to the saving of his house; “by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.” Heb. 11:7. We say that their faith was in Christ, because it was faith unto salvation, and besides the name of Jesus “there is none other Name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Acts 4:12.
There are too many who try to live the Christian life on the strength of the faith which they exercised when they realized their need of pardon for the sins of their past life. We know that many have this idea, first, because we have heard some say so, and second, because there are such multitudes of professed Christians who show the working of no greater power than their own. If they ever have anything to say in social meeting, besides the ever recurring formula, “I want to be a Christian, so that I may be saved,” they tell only of a past experience, of the joy they had when they first believed. Of the joy of living for God, and of walking with him by faith, they know nothing, and he who tells of it  speaks a strange language to them. But the apostle carries this matter of faith clear through to the glorious kingdom, in the following most forcible illustration: —
“By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him; for before his translation he had this testimony that he pleased God. But without faith it is impossible to please Him; for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” Heb. 11:5, 6.
Note the argument to prove that Enoch was translated by faith: That is enough to prove the point. Without faith the best deeds that a man can do will come infinitely short of the perfect righteousness of God, which is the only standard. Wherever real faith is found, it is a good thing; but the best of faith in God to take away the load of the sins of the past will profit a person nothing unless it is carried right through in ever increasing measure until the close of his probation.
From the book: “” The Bible Student’s Library, no. 75, Dec. 1, 1890, By E.J. Waggoner, Chapter: LIVING BY FAITH, p. 3-4.
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Monday, October 17, 2016
By E. J. Waggoner
We have heard many people tell how hard they found it to do right; their Christian life was most unsatisfactory to them, being marked only by failure, and they were tempted to give up in discouragement. No wonder they get discouraged; continual failure is enough to discourage anybody. The bravest soldier in the world would become faint-hearted if he had been defeated in every  battle. Sometimes these persons will mournfully tell that they have about lost confidence in themselves. But if they would only lose confidence in themselves entirely, and would put their whole trust in the One who is mighty to save, they would have a different story to tell. They would then “joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Says the apostle, “Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say, Rejoice.” Phil. 4:4. The man who doesn’t rejoice in God, even though tempted and afflicted, is not fighting the good fight of faith. He is fighting the poor fight of self-confidence and defeat.
All the promises of final happiness are to the overcomer. “To him that overcometh,” says Jesus, “will I give to sit with Me in My throne, even as I also overcame, and am sat down with My Father in His throne.” Rev. 3:21. “He that overcometh shall inherit all things,” says the Lord. Rev. 21:7. An overcomer is one who gains victories. The inheriting is not the overcoming; that is only the reward for overcoming. The overcoming is now; the victories to be gained are victories over the lusts of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life — victories over self and selfish indulgences. The man who fights and sees the foe give way, may rejoice; nobody can keep him from rejoicing, for joy comes spontaneously as the result of seeing the enemy give way. Some folks look with dread upon the thought of having to wage a continual warfare with self and worldly lusts. That is because they do not as yet know anything about the joy of victory; they have experienced only defeat. But it isn’t so doleful a thing to battle constantly, when there is continual victory. The old veteran of a hundred battles, who has been victorious in every  fight, longs to be at the scene of conflict. Alexander’s soldiers, who under his command never knew defeat, were always impatient to be led into the fray. Each victory increased their strength, which was born only of courage, and correspondingly diminished that of the vanquished foe. Now how may we gain continual victories in our spiritual warfare? Listen to the beloved disciple: — “For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world; and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.” 1 John 5:4.
Read again the words of the apostle Paul: — “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.” Gal. 2:20.
Here is the secret of strength. If He lives in the heart to do the work, is it boasting to say that continual victories may be gained? Yes, it is boasting; but it is boasting in the Lord, and that is allowable. Says the Psalmist, “My soul shall make her boast in the Lord;” and Paul says, “God forbid that I should glory save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.” Gal. 6:14.
The soldiers of Alexander were reckoned invincible. Why? Was it because they were naturally stronger and more courageous than all their enemies? — No; but because they were led by Alexander. Their strength was in his leadership. Under another leader they would  often have been defeated. When the Union army was fleeing, panic-stricken, before the enemy at Winchester, the presence of Sheridan turned their defeat into victory. Without him the men were a quaking mob; with him at their head they were an invincible army. If you had listened to the remarks, after the battle, of the soldiers who served under those and similar leaders, you would have heard the praises of their general mingled with all their rejoicing.
From the book: “”] The Bible Student’s Library, no. 75, Dec. 1, 1890, By E.J. Waggoner, Chapter: “A CAUSE OF FAILURE”, p. 5-7.
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Monday, October 17, 2016
By E. J. Waggoner.
Well, our Captain is the Lord of Hosts. He has met the chiefest foe of all and has vanquished him single handed. Those who follow Him invariably go forth conquering and to conquer. Oh, that those who profess to be His followers would put their trust in Him, and then, by the repeated victories that they would gain, they would show forth the praises of Him who has called them out of darkness into His marvelous light!
John says that he that is born of God overcomes the world, through faith. Faith lays hold of the arm of God, and His mighty power does the work. How the power of God can work in a man, accomplishing that which he could not possibly do for himself, no one can tell. It would be as easy to tell how God can give life to the dead. Says Jesus: “The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh and whither it goeth; so is everyone that is born of the Spirit.” John 3:8. How the Spirit works in a man to subdue his passions, and to make him  victorious over pride, envy, and selfishness, is known only to the Spirit; it is sufficient for us to know that it is done, and will be done in everyone who wants that work wrought in him, above all things else, and who trusts God for the performance of it.
We cannot tell how Peter was enabled to walk on the water, when the waves were rolling about him; but we know that at the command of the Lord he did it. So long as he kept his eye fixed on the Master, Divine Power enabled him to walk as easily as though it were solid rock underneath; but when he looked at the waves, possibly with a feeling of pride in what he was doing, as though he himself was doing it, fear very naturally took possession of him, and he began to sink. Faith enabled him to walk on the waves; fear made him sink beneath them.
Says the apostle, “By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they were compassed about seven days.” Heb. 11:30. Why was that written? — For our learning, “that we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.” Rom. 15:4. Why, is there any prospect that we shall ever be called upon to fight armed hosts, and to take fortified cities? — No; “for we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Eph. 6:12); but the victories which have been gained by faith in God over visible foes in the flesh, are placed on record to show us what faith will accomplish in our conflict with the rulers of the darkness of this world. The grace of God, in answer to faith, is as powerful in these battles as in those; for says the apostle: —
“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh; for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds; casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” 2 Cor. 10:3-5.
It was not physical foes alone that faith enabled the ancient worthies to conquer. We read of them that they not only “subdued kingdoms,” but “wrought righteousness, obtained promises,” and, most wonderful and most encouraging of all, “out of weakness were made strong.” Heb. 11:33, 34. Their very weakness became strength to them through faith, because the strength of Christ is made perfect in weakness. “Who, then, shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? Since it is God that justifieth, and we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?” “Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.” Rom. 8:35, 37.
From the book: “” The Bible Student’s Library, no. 75, Dec. 1, 1890, By E. J. Waggoner, Chapter: LIVING BY FAITH, in the chapter: “Our Mighty Leader”, p. 8-10.
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Monday, October 17, 2016
By E. J. Waggoner
++]But there is another expression in the text which stands at the beginning of this tract: “ ” This expression has been the subject of much learned discussion by theologians, and very few of them are agreed as to its meaning. The fact that learned men are disagreed in regard to it, need not frighten us from it with the thought that it cannot be understood, for we  read that things hidden from the wise and prudent are revealed unto babes.
One of the greatest causes of the failure of many people to understand the book of Romans, and indeed, any other portion of Scripture, is a failure to hold to first principles and Bible definitions. Men attempt to define some terms according to their theological training, and find it hard work to make them fit. Then if they at one time accept the Bible definition of the term, they do not adhere to it, but give it some other meaning the next time they meet with it.
The cause of the difficulty in understanding this text is a failure to cling to the Bible definition of the term, “the righteousness of God.” We have already seen that it is an expression indicating God’s character, and that His character is set forth in the ten commandments. They sum up the whole duty of man, which is to be like God. Eccl. 12:13, 14; James 2:8, 12. The law, having been transgressed, cannot, as a matter of course, be perfectly represented in any person’s life, so the gospel was devised that man might in Christ find the perfect righteousness of the law. The gospel is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth, because it makes manifest the righteousness of God. Not only is the law—the righteousness of God—preached, and its majesty upheld, by the gospel, but by the gospel the fruits of righteousness are made to appear in the life of the believer.
Some would make “righteousness of God” in this  text synonymous with “justification.” That is all right, if they do not limit the application of the text to the moment of justification from past transgression. It is the application of the law in Christ to the life of the transgressor that justifies him. Through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus, God by His grace counts the past life of the sinner who believes as though it had been in every respect in accord with His law. Rom. 3:25. This is justification. It is the revelation, or manifestation, through the gospel, of the righteousness of God. Rom. 3:21, 22. But the text says that this is “revealed from faith to faith;” and this can mean nothing else but a progressive work of righteousness. The verse teaches that the righteousness of God is revealed from one degree of faith to a higher degree of faith, and consequently that righteousness must ever be on the increase. This is shown by the quotation which the apostle makes to prove his statement. It must be that the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith, he argues, because it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”
From the book: “” The Bible Student’s Library, no. 75, Dec. 1, 1890, By E. J. Waggoner, Chapter: LIVING BY FAITH, in the chapter: “From Faith to Faith”, p. 10-11.
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Sunday, October 30, 2016
By E. J. Waggoner
There could be no more sure way to undermine the Gospel, and rob it of its power, than the substitution of the teachings of “Science falsely so called” for the simple word of God. , and is regarded as afar off. So, although many did accept that Gospel which is preached to them, and do sincerely wish salvation from sin, ,
But let us note some simple facts that will justify one, even in this scientific age, Who has not watched the springing forth of the tender blade of grass or corn? Have you not at times passed along by the field of corn, and noticed a tiny blade pushing its way to the surface, in spite of heavy clods of earth? Have you not seen a portion of the baked earth heaved up, and, looking beneath, have seen that a tiny spire held it up, so tender that it could not support its own weight if released from its position? The blade had as yet scarcely any color, and was but little more than water, for if you had crushed it in your fingers there would have been scarcely anything but moisture on your hand. Yet this tiny thing was pushing away from before it a clod of earth ten thousand times its own weight.
Whence comes this power? Is it something that is inherent in the grass? Try it, and see. Take that blade of grass that is full grown. Select a small clod of earth, not half the size of the one that was pushed away from before it when it was crowding its way to the surface of the ground, and put it upon the grass. What is the result? Anybody can tell you. The grass is crushed to the ground. Test it again. Take that blade that is pushing its way to the surface from beneath that clod, and remove it from the ground. You take it in your fingers, and it lops down over the side of your hand. Scarcely anything can be thought of that is weaker, and yet but a few moment before it was standing erect, and bearing a burden infinitely heavier than itself.
Will any scientist tell what is the source of the marvelous power exhibited in the grass, or in the bursting of the hard shell of the peach stone by the little germ within? There is something there that no microscope can discover, and no chemical analysis can detect. We can see the manifestation of Power, but cannot see the power it self. The word of the Lord said in the beginning, “Let the earth bring forth grass,” and the power of that word causes the grass to spring forth in spite of all the clods of earth. In that every man may learn a lesson – if he will.
Did I say that we were content to believe that it is the power of the word of God that is manifested in the blade of grass? Nay, not content merely, but glad that we can recognize God’s power in small things. In that we see the assurance that God is able to do for us “exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.” Ephesians 3.20. “All flesh is grass.” Isaiah 40.6. Man is as weak and frail as the grass, having absolutely no power in himself; yet he is able to do all things through Christ, who strengthens him.
, by E. J. Waggoner, p. 38 – 40: From Chapter Six: The Sixth Day: What is Man?
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Thursday, November 10, 2016
By E. J. Waggoner
The force of this is found in the fact that the Christian life, which is the result of faith, is progressive. The Christian life is a continual growth. Peter says: “Beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own steadfastness. But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 3:17, 18. The only way to keep from falling from that which we have, is to grow. David says of the righteous man that “he shall be like a tree  planted by the rivers of water.” Ps. 1:3. This means continual growth.
We read of the path of the just, that it “shall be as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.” Prov. 4:18. But “the just shall live by faith;” therefore it must be that their faith increases.
Again: Paul says to the Corinthians, “Now He that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness.” 2 Cor. 9:10. To the Thessalonians he wrote, “And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men.” 1 Thess. 3:12. And again he said, “But we beseech you, brethren, that ye increase more and more.” 1 Thess. 4:10. But faith works by love (Gal. 5:6); that is, love is the outgrowth of true faith; therefore increasing love must be the result of increasing faith.
To the Hebrews the apostle wrote: “Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection.” Heb. 6:1. And in the epistle to the Philippians Paul said: “Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect; but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which I also am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended; but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” Phil. 3:12-14. Here is set forth a continual reaching out for some higher attainment. The calling of God in Christ Jesus is a calling to holy or righteous living, for  we read, “But like as He which called you is holy, be ye yourselves also holy in all manner of living; because as it is written, Ye shall be holy; for I am holy.” 1 Peter 1:15, 16. Revised Version
This righteousness to which we are called, and for higher attainments in which we must constantly press, is obtained only by faith, as Paul expresses his desire to be found in Christ, not having his own righteousness, “but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.” Phil. 3:9. Therefore, since righteousness comes only by faith, and it must increase, it follows that faith must also increase. So it was not a vain prayer which the disciples uttered when they said, “Lord, increase our faith.” Luke 17:5.
That faith is susceptible of growth is plainly declared by the Scriptures. Paul had hope that when the faith of the Corinthian brethren was increased, he should be helped by them to preach the gospel in the regions beyond them. 2 Cor. 10:15, 16. To the Thessalonians he wrote that he prayed exceedingly night and day, that he might see them, and might perfect that which was lacking in their faith. 1 Thess. 3:10. And still later he wrote, “We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth.” 2 Thess. 1:3.
This last text contains the whole of the argument that we have made. Their faith grew, and as a consequence their charity abounded. Charity, or love, is the fulfilling of the law. Rom. 13:10; 1 John 5:3. It is the manifestation of the righteousness of God, and is a result of true faith, for faith works by love, and the only right-  eousness which will be accepted when the Lord comes is that which is by the faith of Christ, “the righteousness which is of God by faith.” Such being the teaching of Scripture, there is no reason why we should not understand Rom. 1:17 just as it reads. The righteousness of God is revealed, or manifested, from faith to faith.
One or two notable instances recorded in Scripture will illustrate this. The apostle records that “by faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not, when she had received the spies with peace.” Heb. 11:31. This case has been a cause of stumbling to some who have not given careful thought to it. It is well known that Rahab lied to the men sent by the king of Jericho to seize the spies (see Josh. 2:2-6), and they imagine that in saving her God placed a premium on lying, and that it is right sometimes to lie. Neither is true. Rahab was saved, not because of her lie, but because of her faith. She, in common with all the people of Jericho, had heard how the Lord dried up the waters of the Red Sea and how He had led the Israelites; but she alone, of all the inhabitants of Jericho, believed that the hand of the Lord was in the matter, and that He had given the land of Canaan to the Israelites. She had simple faith, but was totally ignorant of God’s law. In the code of the heathen morality, lying was accounted a virtue, and she knew nothing better. But her faith made it possible for her to be saved, and brought her into a place where she could learn righteousness. As a natural consequence her faith in God would increase when she learned more of Him. In her case we have a clear instance of the revelation of the righteousness of God from faith to faith.
The same thing is true of Cornelius. He feared God  with all his house, and gave much alms, and “prayed to God alway.” As a consequence, an angel was sent to him, directing him to send for Peter, who should tell him what he ought to do.
The sum of the whole thing is that it is faith that brings God near to us. If we first believe that He is, He will reveal Himself to us more fully. If we rejoice in that light and walk in it, our faith will be increased, and that will bring more light. As with Rahab, so with all. God does not grant us a blessing because we are righteous, but in order that we may become righteous. When our faith brings us to Christ, it is that we may learn of Him. To our faith, we add virtue and knowledge. But as faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God, it follows that the more we really know — accept — of the Word of God, the greater will be our faith. And so, increasing daily in faith, the just go on from strength to strength, until the dawning of the perfect day ushers them into the immediate presence of God.
From the book: “” The Bible Student’s Library, no. 75, Dec. 1, 1890, By E. J. Waggoner, Chapter: LIVING BY FAITH, in the Chapter: “Christian Growth”, p. 10-11.
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Saturday, November 5, 2016
By E. J. Waggoner
One more lesson of encouragement may be learned from the frailty of man, which shows that only in humility is true exaltation found. The fortieth chapter of Isaiah contains the message which is to prepare a people for the coming of the Lord in glory. It is a message of comfort, because it tells of the power of God. Here is the message:
“The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together; for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it. The voice said, Cry. And he said, What shall I cry? All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field: the grass withereth, the flower fadeth; because the Spirit of the Lord bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass. The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand forever” (Isaiah 40:1-8).
That which is to prepare men for the glorious appearing of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, when He comes to reward every man according as his work shall be, is the full acceptance of the message that man is nothing, and that God is everything. The works that will stand the test of the judgment are the works that are wrought in God. “All flesh is grass”; but we have seen how the power of God is most wonderfully shown in the grass. It was the word of God that said, “Let the earth bring forth grass,” and that is the word which liveth and abideth forever, and which is by the gospel preached unto us. Infinite power is exhibited in the frail thing. Even so does the word of power work in those who heartily believe it. [+ He who acknowledges himself to be nothing -- frail and helpless as the grass -- will be strengthened to do mighty deeds, and will be lifted above the clods of earth, into the sunlight of the presence of God. +]
, by E. J. Waggoner, p. 31-32: From Chapter Six: The Sixth Day: What is Man?
* You may want to check out our video of a quote from this on YouTube: .
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Monday, November 14, 2016
By Charles Fitch.
From his “Letter to the Presbytery of Newark,” from reason one.
It is now several years, since, after a season of spiritual gloom and sadness, I came fully to the conclusion, that there was something in the religion of Jesus Christ, to which I had been a stranger. I had seen myself to be a sinner before God, richly deserving His everlasting indignation. I had seen that God would be holy, just and good, and worthy of universal and eternal adoration, while punishing me with everlasting destruction from His presence and from the glory of His power. ; and
Trusting thus in Him-my crucified Saviour-for my salvation, I was for a time filled with great joy and peace in believing, and went on my way rejoicing. But years passed away, and to these lively emotions of joy in the Lord, I had been almost an entire stranger, except for a short season immediately succeeding my first conversion to Christ-when I did taste in a good degree, the peace which those are sure to find, who come with a heart penitent for sin, and trust in the merits of a crucified Saviour for pardon and everlasting life. This arose partly from what I had learned in the Bible respecting “the riches of the glory of this mystery which is Christ in us, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27); “the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, keeping the heart and mind of the Christian through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7), and “the joy unspeakable and full of glory to be found in Him, Whom not having seen, we love; in Whom, though now we see Him not, yet believing, we rejoice” (1 Peter 1:8); ,
I came then to a settled determination to know, with the help of God, more of spiritual things. Since that time, which is now some years, I have, as never before, “cried after knowledge, and lifted up my voice for understanding, seeking her as silver, and searching for her as for hid treasures that I might understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God” (Proverbs 2:3-5).
I have sought for spiritual bread and for the water of life, with an earnestness which I know I have never felt for any of the possessions of this world. I have sought these in the Bible, in the experience of eminent Christians who have gone to their reward, and in the writings of living Christians who seem to know most of spiritual things. For a long time there was no definite blessing that I had in my mind as the object of pursuit, except that I might have more of the Holy Ghost, and be far better prepared than I had ever been to live to the glory of God.
But I was made acquainted, in the providence of God, with some of those Christians who believe that it is the privilege of all disciples of Christ to be, (Titus 2:13-14); and , by His working in us that which is well-pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ” (Hebrews 13:20-21) – ” (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24) – to be “cleansed from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, and to perfect holiness in the fear of God” (2 Corinthians 7:1); “through the promises of God which are all yea and Amen in Christ, unto the glory of God by us” (2 Corinthians 1:20), and thus through the “exceeding great and precious promises , ” (2 Peter 1:4).
When I first knew this class of Christians, and first read their writings, I was greatly opposed to their views of truth, and from what I had learned of the mistakes and excesses of some who had professed to hold this truth, and to enjoy the experience of it, I was led to regard the whole subject with very great aversion. .
While I was thus crying after knowledge, and lifting up my voice for understanding, the Lord began to teach me more and more of the love of Christ, so that I was not only restored to my first love, (Proverbs 4:18), and that whoso “followeth Christ shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life” (John 8:12). “The peace of God, which passeth all understanding, keeping the heart and the mind through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7), and the “joy unspeakable and full of glory” (1 Peter 1:8), of which the Bible speaks, became realities to my mind; and I had learned the blessed truth, that “all the promises of God in Christ are yea, and in Him Amen, unto the glory of God by us” (2 Corinthians 1:20); , just as the awakened sinner has fulfilled to him the promise of pardon, when, and only when he believes for this on Christ.
I had then inquired what has God promised, and what is He willing to do for me, if I believe for it in Christ. I examined the Bible with this principle in view, and found that God has said, “” (Psalms 32:8). This promise I knew to be yea and amen in Christ unto the glory of God by me, and I therefore prayed and trusted in Christ that God would instruct me, and teach me in the way that I should go, and guide me with His eye, “into all truth” (John 16:13), respecting the doctrine of “sanctification” (1 Peter 1:2).
When I read the promises on this subject, I found them full and explicit. “I will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul” (Deuteronomy 30:6). “ 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 y” (Ezekiel 36:25-27, 29). And “I will make an everlasting covenant with you, that I will not turn away from you, to do you good; but ” (Jeremiah 32:40). And “this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord, ; and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more” (Hebrews 10:16,17).
I also found that Christ, our Redeemer, was called Jesus because “He would save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21); that “; and ” (1 John 3:5, 6).
I also found many other Scriptures equally full and explicit. But after all this, unbelief triumphed in my mind, and I could not see how it should ever be to me reality in this life, that “” (1 John 1:7). But as I prayed more and more for the teachings of God’s Spirit, and searched after the truth, I found that “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
I found also that Christ was “raised up an horn of salvation,” “to perform the mercy promised to the fathers, and to remember God’s holy covenant, the oath which He sware to our father Abraham, Luke 1:69, 72-75.
When I inquired why are not these promises, so rich and full, made good to God’s people, I saw that as they were yea and amen only in Christ, This led me to see that if I would be cleansed from all unrighteousness, as well as have my sins forgiven, I must believe for that cleansing, in Him of whom it is said, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
On Him, therefore, I now endeavored oftentimes to cast myself, by trusting simply in His faithfulness, that He would cleanse me from all unrighteousness. But I had yet no evidence on which I could rest a belief that I was thus cleansed. In this state of mind, I had one day taken my Testament, and a little work on “” by Fletcher, and given myself up to reading, meditation, and prayer on this subject. I opened Fletcher at the following passage:
“My heart strings groan with deep complaint-
My flesh lies panting,
Lord, for Thee,
And every limb, and every joint, Stretches for perfect purity.
“But if the Lord be pleased to come softly to thy help; if He make an end of thy corruptions by helping thee gently to sink to unknown depths of meekness; Nature, like Naaman, is full of prejudices. She expects that Christ will come to make her clean, with as much ado and pomp and bustle, as the Syrian general looked for, when ‘he was wroth, and said, Behold, I thought, He will surely come out to me, and stand, and call on his God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover the leper’ (2 Kings 5:11). Christ frequently goes a much plainer way to work: and by this means disconcerts all our preconceived notions and schemes of deliverance. (Matthew 11:29), the sweet rest of Christian perfection, of perfect humility, resignation and meekness. If thou wilt absolutely come to mount Zion in a triumphal chariot, or make thine entrance into the new Jerusalem upon a prancing horse, thou art likely never to come there. Leave, then, all thy worldly misconceptions behind, and humbly follow thy King, who makes His entry into the typical Jerusalem, ‘meek and lowly, riding upon an ass, yea, upon a colt, the foal of an ass’ (Matthew 21:5).”
These remarks were particularly blessed to me. I had before been laboring to rise above my sins, and thus leave them; now I felt willing to sink below them, into a depth of humility, where the proud, unhumbled spirit of sin would not be willing to follow, and
I felt then in my spirit a most sweet and heavenly sinking into the arms of my Redeemer, such as I had not before experienced, and it was followed by a calm, unruffled, blissful peace in Christ
It was attended with such a full and delightful submission in all things to the will of God; such a joy of heart, in the thought of being for life, and for death, and for ever, altogether at God’s disposal; such a gladness in giving up earth in all its possessions and pleasures for Christ’s sake; such an overflowing of humble, penitential, grateful love to my Redeemer; such a satisfaction in the thought of having Him as my only everlasting portion; such praise to His name that I might possess Him as the portion of my soul for ever; such full-hearted and unshrinking confidence in all His promises, and such a readiness to do and suffer all things, even to the laying down of life for His name’s sake, that I felt constrained to say, this is purity of heart.
I knew that nothing but the Holy Spirit could ever fill such a heart as mine had been, with such feelings as these, and I therefore believed it to be the work of the Holy Spirit, cleansing my heart from the defilement of sin. I know that some persons are ready to say, all this may be the delusion of Satan, leading you to think of yourself more highly than you ought to think.
Christ said to His disciples, “I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him: but ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.” (John 14:16-17).
The true disciple, therefore, will know the Comforter. I know that the feelings I have now described were a blessed reality; that there was nothing left in my will or affections in opposition to them, and For some length of time I continued in that blessed state of mind. The glory of my Redeemer shone upon the vision of my soul without a cloud. He had before seemed to shine upon me with a brightness like the noon-day sun, but now, instead of shining from a particular part of the heavens, He seemed to fill the whole firmament, and to shed His mild and sweet and heavenly and life-giving, joy-inspiring radiance upon me from every point. Above and around me all was light and gladness, and praise to the name of my Redeemer seemed the language of every breath. I cannot but feel that in that state of mind sin had no dominion over me.
But I had yet one lesson to learn, and there was probably but one way by which I could learn it; and that by drinking, like Peter, of the cup of sorrow, that I might in future beware. , and the enemy of my soul doubtless knew enough of me, to commence his attack where I was most likely to be overcome.
I was, therefore, led to say within myself, this need not be mentioned, it never shall be said of me that I go about boasting of my own goodness. To boast of my own goodness I certainly felt no disposition, for I clearly saw that all which had been wrought within me was the work of the Holy Spirit, and that of my own I had nothing of which to boast.
But I came to the conclusion not to say, even to my dearest friends, that I had ever thought myself to be cleansed from sin, even for a moment; I would enjoy it alone with God, and let my life bear witness.
Herein I fell into sin, by denying what I had believed to have been wrought in me by the Spirit of God. I was now made to feel what I had lost. I accordingly made the attempt, and fell into the snare of the wicked one.
I now found the same sins besetting me as before, and bringing me into bondage, and my state precisely what it was, previous to what I believed the Lord had shown me of the blessedness of a pure heart. , and ,
In this state, however, I was led to desire most earnestly, and to pray most fervently that I might be made like Christ.
After praying thus for a time, I saw most clearly that , and
Now it was that the Lord showed me what must be the consequence of being like Christ, and that I could not possibly have the likeness of Christ without meeting these consequences.
The Holy Spirit now showed me the sin which I had committed, in denying what God had done for my soul, and I now saw that while with “my heart I believeth unto righteousness, (Romans 10:10), This I had not done. With my heart I had believed unto righteousness, but instead of making confession with my mouth, of the grace which God had shown me, and thereby being saved from the sin of denying it, I had refused to make the confession, and by so doing fell again into the hands of my spiritual foes.
I now saw that, to continue in the enjoyment of that blessing, I must confess the whole and take the consequences. These I knew would not be small. , and that my brethren in the ministry, whose confidence I had valued above all earthly good, would withdraw their confidence at once, and, in all probability, cast me out from among them.
I had now come truly to the plucking out of the right eye and the cutting off of the right hand-to the point where I must “forsake father and mother, and brethren and sisters, and wife and children for Christ’s sake and the gospel’s” (Matthew 19:29).
Could I make the sacrifice? Could I become as lost, to the friends I had loved most dearly, and have my name cast out as evil, by those whose kind regard I most wished to retain, in order to please my Saviour and enjoy His love, as for a little while He had permitted me to do?
The struggle was severe. I had prayed that I might continually enjoy the Saviour’s love, and He had now shown me what it would cost me and, blessed be His name, He gave me strength to make the choice of His love, at the sacrifice, if necessary, of every thing that I held dear on earth.
I was enabled to pray, Lord, restore me again to that blessed state of conscious purity and peace, and love to Thee, and blessedness in Thee, which I once enjoyed, and I will confess Thy faithfulness to the world, and let my worthless name be reproached as it may. , and , – let me in deed and in truth be cleansed from all unrighteousness, and have full and satisfactory evidence that Thou hast done this for me, and I will declare Thy faithfulness, and in Thy strength meet all that shall follow.
In this state of mind, I took up the Word of God and came to the following passage, in the words of Paul to the Romans, “ ” (Romans 6:11).
I had before thought of this passage, and it has seemed to me that there was a meaning in it which I did not understand. I had said in my thoughts, What if I do think myself dead to sin, how will just thinking myself dead to sin, make me thus dead? How will any change be wrought in the state of my heart before God, by my laboring to think so?
Again, I had thought of the injunction, “Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin,” and I had said in my heart I will endeavor so to do; but found myself wholly unable to do so in any way that even began to satisfy myself, that I was in truth “dead to sin.” It was not the comfort of a sincere mistake respecting my own character, that I desired. “As the hart panteth after the water brooks,” (Psalms 42:1) so panteth my soul after a full conformity to the will of God. I felt that nothing would satisfy me for a moment, but “to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God” (Romans 6:11).
Nor was it an ambition to have others think me free from sin, that I was seeking to gratify, for if , , Could I have possessed all the wealth, and received all the honor, and enjoyed all the pleasure, which the whole universe could have lavished upon me, and have been thought by every creature of God in earth and heaven to have been as pure as the Spirits that wait continually before the eternal throne, all this would have done nothing to fill the desires which burned in my heart, to be “cleansed from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).
Still, however, with my eye on the injunction, “Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:11), I was not able to see how I should do this, so that it should be indeed and in truth a reality in the sight of God; and nothing short of that would satisfy me for a moment.
I now remembered that blessed promise of our divine and glorious and loving Saviour, “” (John 16:13); “He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you” (John 14:26).
I now cast myself down before the Lord, and prayed in the name of Christ, that the Holy Spirit might guide me into all truth respecting the passage before me, and , so that it would be a reality, and not a thing of imagination. Having made known my request, I trusted in Christ that the teachings of the Spirit would be given me, for I knew He had told me, “ ” (John 15:16).
I therefore placed my confidence in the Saviour, and believed that, for His sake the Holy Spirit would show me how to “reckon myself dead indeed unto sin; but alive unto God, through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:11). (1 Peter 1:8), , that I was to reckon myself dead unto sin by trusting my Lord Jesus Christ to keep me dead to sin, and alive unto God
This I saw would be reckoning myself to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God, through Jesus Christ my Lord. , to “Make and keep me pure within,” to make and keep me “dead indeed unto sin,” to make and keep me “alive unto God” (Romans 6:11).
And now, if I had found myself that moment monarch of the world, with its crown on my head, its sceptre in my hand, its accumulated treasures at my feet, and every individual among all its multitudes ready to do my bidding,
How glorious and lovely did my Saviour then appear! “Or ever I was aware, my soul made me like the chariots of Amminadib” (Song of Songs 6:12), and if the crown and the sceptre and the riches and the homage of the world had been mine, I should have leaped for joy and run to give Christ the sceptre and the crown, the riches and the homage; and to lay myself in the dust at His feet, to be His humblest, lowliest servant forevermore.
Oh, since I have known my high privilege to reckon myself dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God, through Jesus Christ my Lord, “” (Song of Songs 1:3). “He has kissed me with the kisses of His love, and His love has been better than wine. He has drawn me, and I have run after Him, and the King has brought me into His chambers, and made me to be glad and rejoice in Him; therefore will I remember His love more than wine, and (by His strength) I will uprightly love Him” (Song of Songs 1:2, 4).
When the Holy Spirit thus enlightened me respecting the privilege of reckoning myself dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ my Lord, He that moment enabled me to avail myself of the privilege, and
The love of the world was gone, no sinful indulgence had any charm for me. My whole heart was won by Christ, and filled with overflowing love to Him, and I feel that a thousand hearts, had they been mine, would have been most joyfully consecrated to His service. I had no will but His, and no desire of life or death or eternity, but to be disposed of in that way which would secure the highest possible praise to my Redeemer.
I was now delivered from the fear of man, and as I had covenanted with the Lord to confess His faithfulness to the world when He should give me evidence on which I could rely, , and , made “dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord,” and had been so abundantly enlightened respecting the privilege of every Christian to be kept in that state by the faithfulness of the dear Redeemer, I could not for a moment hesitate, that it was my duty to declare to the world, that by the power of the Holy Spirit given me by my own blessed Saviour, (Romans 6:11).
Besides, I had once known the bitterness of denying my Saviour here, and the blessed work which He had wrought in me, for the purposes of retaining the good opinion of man; And now He had enabled me once more in His infinite and abounding mercy, “,” and it remained that “” (Romans 10:10), from falling again into the snare of the devil.
I have been enabled to make this confession to the world – that “the great God and my Saviour Jesus Christ, who loved me and gave Himself for me, has redeemed me from all iniquity, and purified me unto Himself” (Titus 2:13-14), that I am “dead unto sin, and alive unto God through Jesus Christ my Lord” (Romans 6:11), that “” (1 Thessalonians 5:23), that “, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep” does “through the blood of the everlasting covenant, , working in me that which is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ; to Whom be glory forever and ever. Amen” (Hebrews 13:20-21).
I felt that in making this confession, I was laying myself and my all, a sacrifice on the altar of my God and Saviour; , and that was ready and glad at all hazards, to confess His faithfulness and power and love to the world.
I knew that the world would reproach me. I knew that God’s professed people would cast out my name as evil. I knew that the friends whom I loved most dearly would many of them, perhaps, weep over me as lost. ; but I knew that my Redeemer and that was given unto Him in heaven and on earth and that I had to “ the , and “ (Matthew 6:33), nothing doubting that “He who feeds the fowls of the air, and clothes the lilies of the field, as Solomon was never arrayed in all his glory” (Matthew 6:26,28-29), would surely feed and clothe me and mine.
In this state of mind I did, at the altar of my God, make confession of what God had taught me of His truth, and of what I had been made to feel of His purifying, sanctifying grace in Jesus Christ; and thus I discharged a duty, to which I am sure I never could have been led by anything, but a once-crucified and now glorified Saviour’s love, manifested to me by the Holy Ghost. I have no more doubt that I was constrained to this step by the love of Christ, than I have that Christ or my own soul has a being. I I know that until I had made of the whole world an entire sacrifice to Christ, I never could have thus held myself up to scorn.
On the morning of the day which immediately followed the Sabbath when I first “witnessed this confession” before men, I had a season of communion with God, of which I will speak, because I think it may do good. I was alone in my chamber, and meditating upon some passages of Scripture, which made mention of the faithfulness of God. Such as the following: “ , ” (1 Corinthians 1:9). “Faithful is He that hath called you, to sanctify you wholly; and to preserve your whole spirit and soul and body blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians 5:24, 23). “ ; ” (1 Corinthians 10:13). “And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True” (Revelation 19:11). “His name is also called the Word of God. And He hath on His vesture and on His thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS” (Revelation
While reflecting thus upon the faithfulness of my God and Saviour, my whole soul seemed heaved with inexpressible emotions, and poured out in floods of gushing love at my Redeemer’s feet. And now in view of the safety of trusting my all with Him, my soul exulted with amazing gladness, and I could only walk my room weeping aloud for joy, and pouring out my tears of overflowing delight, as I uttered again and again the single expression, “my faithful God, my faithful God!”
Since that time, I have had various conflicts with Satan, but I have never for a moment doubted the faithfulness of my Redeemer in saving all His people from their sins, who will believe on His name for that blessing; and (Romans 11:20).
I have by no means been all that I hope, or expect to be; for I see that it is the privilege of the Christian that has been redeemed from all iniquity, still to “forget the things which are behind, and reach forth unto those things which are before” (Philippians 3:13), and “beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, to be changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord” (2 Corinthians 3:18).
I believe that to be cleansed from all unrighteousness is by no means the height of the Christian’s privilege on earth; (Ephesians 3:18, 19). And that even then, we may still say to Him with the apostle – “Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be glory by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen” (Ephesians 3:20-21).
You have now seen, brethren, in what I have related to you of the leadings and teachings of God’s Spirit with my own soul, why I cannot regard your admonition, and desist from preaching the doctrine of entire sanctification by faith in Christ. , Who has made to me – a miserable, unworthy, hell – deserving worm of the dust-manifestations of His presence and love, bright and glorious, far beyond anything which I once could have conceived. I believe “He is faithful to sanctify His people wholly, and to preserve their whole spirit and soul and body blameless unto His coming” (1 Thessalonians 5:24, 23). I (1 Corinthians 9:16). Like Jonah fleeing to Tarshish, I once attempted to escape the discharge of the duty. (Jeremiah 20:9).
Once I denied the faithfulness of my Redeemer; but He forgave me, and has restored me to the enjoyment of His love, and has, as I firmly believe, in faithfulness to (Deuteronomy 30:6). I must speak it to the world. Let Him have the glory, and let me bear the reproach which I must bear for His sake.
I must confess it to the world, for the purpose of making known, as far as I am able, with His blessing, to all God’s people, their high privileges in Christ Jesus. For “I certify you, brethren, that this gospel which is preached of me is not after man. ” (Galatians 1:11-12). And now “Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. ” (Acts 4:19-20).
Blog Edited by .
Saturday, November 19, 2016
By E. J. Waggoner
Upon the existence of God depends the existence of the heavens and the earth. Therefore the existence of the heavens, yea, of the entire universe, depends upon the fulfillment of the promises of God to the believing sinner. But the sun, moon and stars still hold their places in the heavens as proof that His faithfulness, therefore, is in the heavens. If we would let the sun, moon and stars tell this story to us every time we see them, we should live better lives, and discouragement would be a thing unknown.
p. 33, by E. J. Waggoner
Editor’s note: “In the same way God, desiring even more to show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness of His purpose, interposed with an oath, in order that by , in which , we may have strong encouragement, we who have fled for refuge in laying hold of the hope set before us.” Hebrews 6:17-18 NASB.
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The purpose of this Blog is to teach righteousness by Faith, which is the key to pleasing God. Hebrews 11:6. When someone learns to believe in God fully, they are able to get the help they need to be happy and be victorious. This is an essential part of the life that God wants all of His people to have. When this is studied in its beauty, it leads to being born again, and filled with the Holy Spirit! On this blog you will read many inspiring articles that will teach you how to have faith in God, so you can have life and peace. These articles will show you the secrets of how to have faith, which enables you to appropriate the promises of God, to make you victorious in this life and the life to come. And will help you to gain the other fruits of the Spirit: peace, love, and joy that you were meant to have, and have the power to live a righteous life. In this book you will see all of the articles in this blog from its start in October 2016 to December 2016. May God bless you as you read these article and let His Spirit touch your heart! This book has been edited in such a way as to make it work as best as possible for audio readers in the eBook versions, to be able to listen to it being read. This opens up this book for people who are blind, or have trouble reading, or for busy people who want to just listen to it while driving, walking, jogging, or working around home, etc. Sometimes you just want to relax, and not have to think too much, and just listen to an inspirational book being read. I recommend that you get a good text-to-speech Book Reader App, so that you can enjoy the full experience of this book.