Editorial – The Body of Death

Many Christians are despairing. They realize they are living in a body of death and that they are helpless to free themselves from this sinful flesh. They perceive the loving-kindness of God. They not only discern the surpassing excellence of the divine character, but they see that His law is wise and just. At the same time, they find themselves in the shackles of sin from which they have tried, over and over, to free themselves, and yet they are not set free. “‘O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from this body of death?’ Romans 7:24, margin. Such is the cry that has gone up from burdened hearts in all lands and in all ages. To all, there is but one answer, ‘Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.’ John 1:29.” Steps to Christ, 19.

It apparently is a universal experience that human beings judge others by themselves. This is the main reason for such faulty judgment by people who are considered to be wise.…“it is sad to see those who should be vessels unto honor indulging in the gratification of the lower nature and walking in paths that conscience condemns. Men professing to be followers of Christ fall to a low level, always mourning over their shortcomings, but never overcoming and bruising Satan under their feet. Guilt and condemnation constantly burden the soul,…Through indulgence in sin, self-respect is destroyed; and when that is gone, respect for others is lessened; we think that others are as unrighteous as we are ourselves.” Testimonies, vol. 6, 52, 53.

If we behold Jesus, as instructed above, what is going to happen to us? We have the divine promise that we will be set free. (See John 8:32-36.) But the bigger, and even more important, question to be answered is not what the result will be, but how do we comply with the condition, “Behold the Lamb of God”?  “By sin we have been severed from the life of God. Our souls are palsied. Of ourselves we are no more capable of living a holy life than was the impotent man capable of walking. There are many who realize their helplessness, and who long for that spiritual life which will bring them into harmony with God; they are vainly striving to obtain it.…Let these desponding, struggling ones look up. The Saviour is bending over the purchase of His blood, saying with inexpressible tenderness and pity, ‘Wilt thou be made whole?’ He bids you arise in health and peace. Do not wait to feel that you are made whole. Believe His word, and it will be fulfilled. Put your will on the side of Christ. Will to serve Him, and in acting upon His word you will receive strength.The Desire of Ages, 203.

In His prayer to the Father, Christ said, “This is life eternal, that they might know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent.” We must learn of Christ. We must know what He is to those He has ransomed. We must realize that through belief in Him it is our privilege to be partakers of the divine nature, and so escape the corruption that is in the world through lust. Then we are cleansed from all sin, all defects of character. We need not retain one sinful propensity. Review and Herald, April 24, 1900.

“Come to Jesus every day, and tell Him you want strength, you want heavenly wisdom, to understand what is sin and how to forsake it.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 14, 75.

“It is in the word of God that we find encouragement to turn our eyes to Christ, to lift up our voice in hope and expectation, saying, ‘Jesus, Thou Son of David, have mercy on me.’ It is in the word of God that we find what is the effectual remedy for the leprosy of sin.” Signs of the Times, July 2, 1896.

All emphasis supplied.