Steps to Christ
by Ellen G. White
Chapter 6: Faith and Acceptance
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Some seem to feel that they must be on probation,
and must prove to the Lord that they are
reformed, before they can claim His blessing. But they
may claim the blessing of God even now. They must
have His grace, the Spirit of Christ, to help their
infirmities, or they cannot resist evil. Jesus loves to
have us come to Him just as we are, sinful, helpless,
dependent. We may come with all our weakness,
our folly, our sinfulness, and fall at His feet in
penitence. It is His glory to encircle us in the arms of
His love and to bind up our wounds, to cleanse us
from all impurity.
Here is where thousands fail; they do not believe
that Jesus pardons them personally, individually.
They do not take God at His word. It is the privilege
of all who comply with the conditions to know
for themselves that pardon is freely extended for
every sin. Put away the suspicion that God's promises
are not meant for you. They are for every [p. 53] repentant transgressor. Strength and grace have been
provided through Christ to be brought by ministering
angels to every believing soul. None are so sinful
that they cannot find strength, purity, and righteousness
in Jesus, who died for them. He is waiting to
strip them of their garments stained and polluted with
sin, and to put upon them the white robes of
righteousness; He bids them live and not die.
God does not deal with us as finite men deal with
one another. His thoughts are thoughts of mercy,
love, and tenderest compassion. He says, "Let the
wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man
his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and
He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for
He will abundantly pardon." "I have blotted out, as
a thick cloud, thy transgressions, and, as a cloud,
thy sins." Isaiah 55:7; 44:22.
"I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth,
saith the Lord God: wherefore turn yourselves, and
live ye." Ezekiel 18:32. Satan is ready to steal away
the blessed assurances of God. He desires to take
every glimmer of hope and every ray of light from the
soul; but you must not permit him to do this. Do not
give ear to the tempter, but say, "Jesus has died
that I might live. He loves me, and wills not that
I should perish. I have a compassionate heavenly
Father; and although I have abused His love, though
the blessings He has given me have been squandered,
I will arise, and go to my Father, and say, 'I have
sinned against heaven, and before Thee, and am no
more worthy to be called Thy son: make me as one
of Thy hired servants.'" The parable tells you how [p. 54] the wanderer will be received: "When he was yet a
great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion,
and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him."
But even this parable, tender and touching as it is,
comes short of expressing the infinite compassion of
the heavenly Father. The Lord declares by His prophet,
"I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore
with loving-kindness have I drawn thee." Jeremiah
31:3. While the sinner is yet far from the Father's
house, wasting his substance in a strange country, the
Father's heart is yearning over him; and every longing
awakened in the soul to return to God is but the
tender pleading of His Spirit, wooing, entreating,
drawing the wanderer to his Father's heart of love.
With the rich promises of the Bible before you,
can you give place to doubt? Can you believe that
when the poor sinner longs to return, longs to forsake
his sins, the Lord sternly withholds him from coming
to His feet in repentance? Away with such thoughts!
Nothing can hurt your own soul more than to entertain
such a conception of our heavenly Father. He hates
sin, but He loves the sinner, and He gave Himself in
the person of Christ, that all who would might be saved
and have eternal blessedness in the kingdom of glory.
What stronger or more tender language could have
been employed than He has chosen in which to express
His love toward us? He declares, "Can a woman forget
her sucking child, that she should not have
compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget,
yet will I not forget thee." Isaiah 49:15.
Look up, you that are doubting and trembling; [p. 55] for Jesus lives to make intercession for us. Thank
God for the gift of His dear Son and pray that He
may not have died for you in vain. The Spirit invites
you today. Come with your whole heart to Jesus, and
you may claim His blessing.
As you read the promises, remember they are the
expression of unutterable love and pity. The great
heart of Infinite Love is drawn toward the sinner
with boundless compassion. "We have redemption
through His blood, the forgiveness of sins." Ephesians
1:7. Yes, only believe that God is your helper. He
wants to restore His moral image in man. As you draw
near to Him with confession and repentance, He will
draw near to you with mercy and forgiveness.
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