Friday, March 27, 2009

"Confidence in the Prophetic Gift"

Undoubtedly, the General Conference chose to publish this particular Quarterly because they realize that confidence in or love for, Ellen White's writings is waning in the church.

The Lord Jesus Himself asked rather plaintively, "When the Son of man cometh, shall He find faith on the earth?" (Luke 18:8). The Lord is all-powerful, He is omnipotent, but He cannot force His people to believe if they love unbelief.

A very serious example of the evil of unbelief is the popular attitude toward the beginning of the Latter Rain and the Loud Cry of Revelation 18:1-4.

Can you imagine the farmers in a drought-stricken land where their crops are withering, being unhappy when the Lord sends them a gentle shower of latter rain moisture? That would be unthinkable, wouldn't it? But our elders lived out this unimaginable scenario in 1888. We were in danger of losing the third angel's message, the reason for our existence as a people; the Lord did not overwhelm them with lightning, thunder, and gully-washer great rains--just a gentle shower of the Holy Spirit in Latter Rain power.

The Lord gave His Holy Spirit to two young men in a message of justification by faith that was like a gentle rain on thirsty land; Ellen White was overjoyed. She said she had never heard anything so wonderful at any time at any place! She immediately recognized the leading of the Holy Spirit. But she was pained by the rejection the brethren manifested: "The course that [was] pursued at Minneapolis [1888] was cruelty to the Spirit of God" (MS 30, 1889). "I know that at that time the Holy Spirit was insulted" (Letter 24, 1892).

"The time will come when many will be willing to do anything and everything possible in order to have a chance of hearing the call which they rejected at Minneapolis. ... Better opportunities will never come, deeper feelings they will not have" (Letter 19d, 1892; to O. A. Olsen, the General Conference President).

The Lord Jesus said, "Blessed are they who hunger and thirst after righteousness" (Matt. 5:6); we could add, righteousness by faith, because that is the only kind we can receive!

Now, today, here and now, is the time to hunger and thirst after such righteousness. If you "hunger" for it, yearn for it, seek it, long for it, happy are you!

Thank God that we can still "gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost" (cf. John 6:12). In His infinite wisdom, the Lord has preserved for us in writing the message which He sent to us 121 years ago--as the "beginning" of the Loud Cry and the Latter Rain.

Let nothing hinder your search!

--Robert J. Wieland