Satan's power will be broken
The thought that the righteousness of Christ is imputed to us, not because of any merit on our part, but as a free gift from God, is a precious thought. The enemy of God and man is not willing that this truth should be clearly presented; for he knows that if the people receive it fully, his power will be broken. If he can control minds so that doubt and unbelief and darkness shall compose the experience of those who claim to be the children of God, he can overcome them with temptation.
That simple faith which takes God at His word should be encouraged. God's people must have that faith which will lay hold of divine power, "for by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God" (Eph. 2:8). Those who believe that God for Christ's sake has forgiven their sins, should not, through temptation, fail to press on to fight the good fight of faith. Their faith should grow stronger until their Christian life, as well as their words, shall declare, "The blood of Jesus Christ. . . cleanseth us from all sin" (John 1:7). Gospel Workers, p. 161.
The Christian lives by virtue of his union with Christ. The sinful and human is linked to the holy and divine. The believing soul abides in Christ, and becomes one with Him. When persons are closely united in the relations of this life, their tastes become similar; they come to love the same things. So those who abide in Christ will love the things which He loves. They will sacredly cherish and obey His commandments . . . The vinebranch, nourished from the parent stock, becomes flourishing and fruitful. Its rich and fragrant clusters attest its union with the living vine. So the Christian, abiding in Jesus, will bring forth fruit. In character and life will be manifested, like the teeming cluster of the vine, the precious graces of the Spirit love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance . . .
Resolve that you will be fruit-bearing members of the living Vine. The scion can flourish only as it receives life and strength from the parent stock. Improve, then, every opportunity to connect yourselves more closely with Christ. It is by believing Him, loving Him, copying Him, and depending wholly upon Him, that you are to become one with Him; and through you His life and character will be revealed to the world. Our High Calling, p. 145.
That all might be pardoned
As related to the first Adam, men receive from him nothing but guilt and the sentence of death. But Christ steps in and passes over the ground where Adam fell, enduring every test in man's behalf. He redeems Adam's disgraceful failure and fall by coming forth from the trial untarnished. This places man on vantage ground with God. It places him where, through accepting Christ as his Savior, he becomes a partaker of the divine nature. Thus he becomes connected with God and Christ. The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, Vol. 6, p. 1074.
The sin of the whole world was laid upon Jesus, and divinity gave its highest value to the suffering of humanity in Jesus, that the whole world might be pardoned through faith in the Substitute. The most guilty need have no fear that God will not pardon, for because of the efficacy of the divine sacrifice the penalty of the law will be remitted. Through Christ the sinner may return to allegiance to God. The Faith I Live By, p. 104.
The apostle contrasts the disobedience of Adam and the full, entire obedience of Christ. Think of what Christ's obedience means to us. It means that in His strength we too may obey. Christ was a human being. He served His heavenly Father with all the strength of His human nature. He has a twofold nature, at once human and divine. He is both God and Man. The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, Vol. 6, p. 1074.
Delivered from the curse
It is the province of the law to condemn, but there is in it no power to pardon or to redeem. Without Christ the law of itself was only condemnation and death to the transgressor. It has no saving quality, no power to shield the transgressor from its penalty . . .
The transgression of God's law made the death of Christ essential to save man and yet maintain the dignity and honor of the law. Christ took upon Himself the condemnation of sin. He opened His bosom to the woes of man. He who knew no sin became sin for us ...
Sin, so hateful to His sight, was heaped upon Him till He groaned beneath its weight. The despairing agony of the Son of God was so much greater than His physical pain, that the latter was hardly felt by Him.
God permits His Son to be delivered up for our offenses. He Himself assumes toward the SinBearer the character of a judge, divesting Himself of the endearing qualities of a father.
Herein His love commends itself in the most marvelous manner to the rebellious race. The Faith I Live By, p. 104.
"That He might sanctify the people with His own blood," Christ "suffered without the gate" (Heb. 13:12). For transgression of the law of God, Adam and Eve were banished from Eden. Christ, our substitute, was to suffer without the boundaries of Jerusalem. He died outside the gate, where felons and murderers were executed. Full of significance are the words, "Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us" (Gal. 3:13). Desire of Ages, p. 741.
By saving faith alone
It is by beholding Christ upon the cross of Calvary that the sinner is drawn to his Savior; and as he realizes that Christ has died for him, his heart is melted into contrition and tenderness. He repents toward God because he has transgressed the divine law, and he has faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ as his substitute and surety. This is the work that is before every soul who has transgressed the law of God repentance toward God for breaking His commandments, which has caused the death of His Son, and faith toward Him who imputeth His righteousness unto us. But there is a great misapprehension in regard to what is genuine faith. It is not a mere intellectual assent to truth, or a nominal acceptance of the fact that Christ has died for the salvation of men. Genuine faith works by love, and purifies the soul. Review and Herald, July 5, 1892.
The light given me of God places this important subject above any question in my mind. Justification is wholly of grace and not procured by any works that fallen man can do. The matter has been presented before me in clear lines that if the rich man has money and possessions, and he makes an offering of the same to the Lord, false ideas come in to spoil the offering by the thought he has merited the favor of God, that the Lord is under obligation to him to regard him with special favor because of this gift.
Man broke God's law, and through the Redeemer new and fresh promises were made on a different basis. All blessings must come through a Mediator. . . . Every gift is stamped with the cross and bears the image and superscription of Jesus Christ. All things come of God. From the smallest benefits up to the largest blessing, all flow through the one Channel a superhuman mediation sprinkled with the blood that is of value beyond estimate because it was the life of God in His Son.
Now not a soul can give God anything that is not already His. Bear this in mind: "All things come of Thee, and of Thine own have we given Thee" (1 Chron. 29:14). This must be kept before the people wherever we go that we possess nothing, can offer nothing in value, in work, in faith, which we have not first received of God and upon which He can lay His hand any time and say, They are Mine - gifts and blessings and endowments I entrusted to you, not to enrich yourself, but for wise improvement to benefit the world. -Faith and Works, pp. 20-22.
See Christ in the law
The burden of our message is not only the commandments of God, but the faith of Jesus. A bright light shines upon our pathway today, and it leads to increased faith in Jesus. We must receive every ray of light, and walk in it, that it may not be our condemnation in the judgment. Our duties and obligations become more important as we obtain more distinct views of truth. Gospel Workers, p. 162.
I ask you what position shall we take that we may be partakers of the divine nature? Why should we not see in that law the righteousness of Jesus Christ? Christ comes in and imputes to me His righteousness in His perfect obedience to that law. — 1888 Materials, p. 125.
The instruction which Moses gave to the children of Israel concerning the statutes and the precepts of God, did not originate with Moses, but with the God of heaven. We are told that Christ was in the pillar of cloud by day and in the fiery pillar at night. Men are enshrouded in darkness, and when they array Christ in the New Testament against Christ in the Old Testament, surely wisdom has departed from them. The Israelites of old were saved by Christ as verily as we are saved by Christ in this day. We read in the Word of God, "Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, verily my Sabbaths ye shall keep; for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you."
We want the sanctification that God Himself gives, and that sanctification comes through doing His law. Review and Herald, July 15, 1890.
Only by the grace of Christ
Many will say, I am saved, I am saved, I am saved. Well, have they been cleansed from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit? And can they cleanse themselves by the righteousness of the law? Jesus Christ came to this world, and there is His righteousness to impart to the children of men who are obeying the law of Cod. The whole world can say, I am saved, as well as any transgressor today. They can say, I believe in Christ that he is my Savior, but why do they disregard His law which is the transcript of His character? When they disregard the law of Jehovah they disregard the Lord Jesus Christ.
Now, I want to say to you before closing, that we have a wonderful friend in Jesus, who came to save His people from the transgression of the law. What is sin? The only definition of sin is that it is the transgression of the law. Then here is Jesus Christ, who comes right in and imparts His righteousness to us; we cannot overcome in our own strength, but by faith in Him. If you will believe on Jesus Christ, you will have Him today. You must believe that He is your Savior now, and that He imputes to you His righteousness because He has died, and because He has been obedient unto every requirement of that transgressed law of God. If you do this, you will have a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. Adam and Eve lost Eden because they transgressed that law, but you will lose heaven if you transgress it.
We can be filled with all the fullness of God. Our lives may measure with the life of God. Then can we press back the powers of darkness. 1888 Materials, p. 128.
Here the battle is before us. We see the battle, how Christ contended with the powers of darkness; and we see what He has done, and why the cross of Calvary had been erected between God and man. Then what? Man comes to Christ, and God and man are united at the cross, and here mercy and truth have met together, righteousness and truth have kissed each other. This is drawing man to the cross, where Christ died in behalf of man to elevate the law of Jehovah, but not to lessen it one iota. The cross of Calvary will stand in the judgment and testify to everyone the immutability and changeless character of the law of God, and not a word can be offered for sin in that day. 1888 Materials, p. 125.
Only by accepting the virtue and grace of Christ can we keep the law. Belief in the propitiation for sin enables fallen man to love God with his whole heart, and his neighbor as himself. Christ's Object Lessons, p. 378.
Overcoming by the cross
Today Satan presents the same temptations that he presented to Christ, offering us the kingdoms of the world in return for our allegiance. But upon him who looks to Jesus as the author and finisher of his faith, Satan's temptations have no power. He cannot cause to sin the one who will accept by faith the virtues of Him who was tempted in all points as we are, yet without sin.
"God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." He, who repents of his sin and accepts the gift of the life of the Son of God, cannot be overcome. Laying hold by faith of the divine nature, he becomes a child of God. He prays, he believes. When tempted and tried, he claims the power that Christ died to give, and overcomes through His grace. This every sinner needs to understand. He must repent of his sin, he must believe in the power of Christ, and accept that power to save and to keep him from sin. How thankful ought we to be for the gift of Christ's example!
Profound theories and speculations of human creation may abound, but he who would come off conqueror in the end, must be humble enough to depend upon divine power. When we thus grasp the power of Infinity, and come to Christ, saying, "In my hand no price I bring; simply to Thy cross I cling," then divine agencies can cooperate with us to sanctify and purify the life.
Let no one seek to evade the cross. It is through the cross that we are enabled to overcome. It is through affliction and trial that divine agencies can carry on a work in our lives that will result in the love and peace and kindness of Christ.
A great work is to be accomplished daily in the human heart by the study of the Word. We need to learn the simplicity of true faith. This will bring its returns. Let us seek for decided advancement in spiritual understanding. Let us make the precious Word the man of our counsel. We need to walk carefully every moment, keeping close to the side of Christ. The spirit and grace of Christ are needed in the life, and the faith that works by love and purifies the souls. Selected Messages, Book 1, pp. 224, 225
Ellen G. White, the Lord's messenger, was one of the founders of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.