Editorial – Are We Humble Enough to be Saved, part 2

It was pride that caused the Jewish Nation to reject Christ

“The Jewish leaders discerned the truth that Christ presented, but they also realized that it meant the greatest humiliation to them to accept of the rich salvation brought to them through this humble teacher. To be saved through grace alone, to confess that in and of themselves they deserved no favors, was to acknowledge that which was contrary to their cherished ideas, and to lay in the dust their pride, vanity, and ambition. To receive the benediction that Christ pronounced, they saw that an entire change must take place in their lives, but this fact they did not relish.” Sabbath School Worker, August 1, 1895. See also Patriarchs and Prophets, 475.

Pride results in evil surmising and a spirit of accusation and criticism

“When the Spirit of God rests upon you, there will be no feeling of envy or jealousy in examining another’s position; there will be no spirit of accusation and criticism, such as Satan inspired in the hearts of the Jewish leaders against Christ. As Christ said to Nicodemus, so I say to you, ‘Ye must be born again.’ ‘Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.’ You must have the divine mold before you can discern the sacred claims of the truth. Unless the teacher is a learner in the school of Christ, he is not fitted to teach others.” 1888 Materials, 534.

“Never have an idea that you know more than your brethren, but just keep humble. It was this spirit of evil surmising that brought all the weakness into the Jewish nation.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 11, 243.

It was pride that caused Adventism to reject the message that God sent to us in 1888

“The conference at Minneapolis was the golden opportunity for all present to humble the heart before God, and to welcome Jesus as the great Instructor; but the stand taken by some at that meeting proved their ruin. They have never seen clearly since, and they never will; for they persistently cherish the spirit that prevailed there, a wicked criticizing, denunciatory spirit…They will be asked in the Judgment, ‘Who required this at your hand, to rise up against the message and the messengers I sent to My people with light, with grace and power? Why have you lifted up your souls against God? Why did you not humble your hearts before God, and repent of your rejection of the message of mercy He has sent you?’ The Lord has not inspired these brethren to resist the truth. He designed that they should be baptized with the Holy Spirit, and be living channels of light to communicate the light to our world, in clear, bright rays.” Paulson Collection, 154.

“From this meeting decisions will be made for life or for death; not that anyone needs to perish, but spiritual pride and self-confidence will close the door that Jesus and His Holy Spirit’s power shall not be admitted. They shall have another chance to be undeceived, and to repent, confess their sins, and come to Christ and be converted that He shall heal them.’”1888 Materials, 277.

“If all the brethren at Minneapolis had been seeking the Lord with humility of mind, there would have been no conflict, no clashing, no uncourteous words, nothing unwise advanced. But men who were capable of being entrusted with great interests, desired to reveal their executive ability in guiding the vessel through the breakers to the harbor. They did not wait for divine guidance.” 1888 Materials, 1229.

Those who stumbled at Minneapolis had to overcome their pride or they could not be saved. Do you believe that God is the same in His requirements today? The most basic problems in Minneapolis were not theology. The most basic problems today are not theology. “Only by pride comes contention.” Proverbs 13:10. Even if our theology is all right if the condition of our heart is wrong then we have something to overcome—the old man must be crucified, a new creation must take place, a contrite and humble spirit must develop among us or we will be just as guilty as those in 1888 whether our theology is right or not.

Jockeying for position, pride of opinion, the war of words, the strife of tongues, the attempt to prove that we are just dealing with issues when the facts reveal that it is personalities that are being dealt with even more—all of this and more is evidence for our need to humble ourselves before God in dust and ashes and “pray to him, morning, noon, and night, to give you a meek and humble spirit, a mild temper, an affectionate disposition.” Youth’s Instructor, January 1, 1856.