14 The 1888 Revival

By John Thiel, The Consummation of the Everlasting Covenant Conference, Study 14, Audio: The 1888 Revival

The hymn ‘Weary of Earth’ reminds us of the experience of Gods people during the time of judgement when our sins are unveiled before us by the fact that we have fallen. Evil is ever with us day by day. Don’t you feel it? In spite of that mine ears hear the gracious tidings, repent, return, thou shalt be loosed of all. We want to really understand that voice and what he means when he says just repent and return, you will be loosed of all. Don’t doubt, cease restless will. Do you have a lonely strife?

Cease, restless will! thy lonely strife resign !

I know too well how little strength is mine ;

Grant me, dear Lord, Thy saving love to see !

I strive no more, I give myself to Thee.

What is the experience? A sense of hopeless failure. A sense and experience of falling and rising and falling again and rising and the oppression of the evil one. The experience among God’s people was what inspiration revealed that some will stumble and some will give heed to seducing spirits.

Some will stumble, some will give heed to seducing spirits; some will choose darkness rather than light because they are not true to God. Like their Master, those who are abiding in Christ will not fall nor be discouraged. {CTr 370.2}

This experience took place in Adventism from the time that the judgement commenced. What is the period of the judgement termed in the Bible? The period of Laodicea, the people of the judgement. This is what the true witness who witnesses to us reveals of the people of Laodicea. This is the experience and he knows it and he witnesses it to us.

Revelation 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;

Who is this? The faithful and true witness. Who is he? The everlasting gospel agent the beginning of the creation of God. From the beginning of all creation, he is the one of the everlasting covenant. He knew you before you existed, he knows you from his own experience coming down to your experience. What does he say?

Revelation 3:15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. 16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. 17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

In the experience of the advent people there are people in the leadership who are described here as it says the angel. He then says I’m not going to give up on you so quickly, you have fallen into this state. Even the rebellious he is prepared to still prevail with and so he does.

Revelation 3:18 I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and [that] the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.

In those stages of people falling in the time of the judgment, although they fall, although they become lukewarm, although they don’t know where they are, what does he do? He reveals the things that mar their life and he appeals to them don’t give up, I feel like spewing out and I will spew you out if you don’t change but please I want you to change. Buy of me that which will change you. Can we see and feel and hear the pleading of him to us? How soon after 1844 when the message was given the message the hour of Gods judgement is come before and up to 1844 and since then the second and third angel, how long after that did the experience of Laodicea commence, the experience of people dropping off? Some will do this and that and some will do the other and some will be taken. When did that commence?

As I have of late looked around to find the humble followers of the meek and lowly Jesus, my mind has been much exercised. Many who profess to be looking for the speedy coming of Christ are becoming conformed to this world and seek more earnestly the applause of those around them than the approbation of God. They are cold and formal, like the nominal churches from which they but a short time since separated. The words addressed to the Laodicean church describe their present condition perfectly. (See Revelation 3:14-20.) They are “neither cold nor hot,” but “lukewarm”. And unless they heed the counsel of the “faithful and true Witness,” and zealously repent and obtain “gold tried in the fire,” “white raiment,” and “eye-salve,” He will spew them out of His mouth. {EW 107.2}

Do you know when this was written? 1852. Less than ten years after 1844. The time of judgement became the experience of our last study. Why? Because it is a bit tedious to go through the experiences of recognition of my depraved condition and people would rather be in a state of sleepiness than to be in that state of experience. Don’t people want to be left alone? We are living in a time when they will heap unto themselves teachers having itching ears speaking smooth things. Is that what we are seeing? That is our experience. Do you like hearing the things that continually hold your sins before you? People hate me as I preach exactly what the word of God says and they think I am having a go of them. There are people that are no longer with us because of that and they have drifted into the world still claiming to be Gods people. This demise commenced just before 1852 and has deepened.

The church cannot measure herself by the world nor by the opinion of men nor by what she once was. Her faith and her position in the world as they now are must be compared with what they would have been if her course had been continually onward and upward. The church will be weighed in the balances of the sanctuary. If her moral character and spiritual state do not correspond with the benefits and blessings God has conferred upon her, she will be found wanting. The light has been shining clear and definite upon her pathway, and the light of 1882 calls her to an account. {5T 83.2}

She repeats again and again the Laodicean condition applies to us.

If her talents are unimproved, if her fruit is not perfect before God, if her light has become darkness, she is indeed found wanting. The knowledge of our state as God views it, seems to be hidden from us. {5T 83.2}

I don’t see it, he measures it and he reveals to us the things but do we want him to?

We see, but perceive not; we hear, but do not understand; and we rest as unconcerned as if the pillar of cloud by day, and the pillar of fire by night, rested upon our sanctuary. We profess to know God, and to believe the truth, but in works deny Him. Our deeds are directly adverse to the principles of truth and righteousness, by which we profess to be governed. {5T 83.2}

We do hear but we don’t understand. That is the testimony of Jesus to the church of Laodicea. God sees this happening and as we have already established he doesn’t want the people to stay like that. He tells them their true condition and they say surely not and they murmur and complain they are being chopped and offended and the rest of it but God says I’m not trying to offend you or break you down, I’m trying to help you. Who did Jacob think the angel was that came to help him? An enemy and he fought with him. Jacobs’s trouble starts in essence before the close of probation but intensifies at the close of probation. God’s people are met by the angel already during the time of Jacob’s trouble. He is trying to bless them but they think he is an enemy. As he wants to help them out of this condition, at that time and maybe now as well for those who are standing on the platform of original Adventism in doctrine, we are standing are we not? Are we not going to be standing on the original platform of Adventism? He is talking to us as he is to them then. He says to them who are in this condition you need a revival. As he speaks these things and we become aware that I am not as I should be, we read we need revival.

Psalm 85:6 Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee? 7 Show us thy mercy, O LORD, and grant us thy salvation.

As you hear the testimony of Jesus of the church that has gone out in this demise, is this the language of your soul? I am in this sleepy condition and you know what it is like when you are really sleepy, I can’t get up, I think I will stay in bed longer. This is the mentality of Laodicea. I need something to stir me into action. Revive me again as I’m not rejoicing as I’m so crushed at my sinfulness. That is what Jesus has said.

A revival of true Godliness among us is the greatest and most urgent of all our needs. To seek this should be our first work.–Review and Herald, March 22, 1887. {ChS 41.4}

The condition had come to such a point that the need of revival was paramount, God did not want to spew his people out and therefore they needed revival.

A revival and a reformation must take place under the ministration of the Holy Spirit. Revival and reformation are two different things. Revival signifies a renewal of spiritual life, a quickening of the powers of mind and heart, a resurrection from the spiritual death. Reformation signifies a reorganization, a change in ideas and theories, habits and practices. Reformation will not bring forth the good fruit of righteousness unless it is connected with the revival of the Spirit. Revival and reformation are to do their appointed work, and in doing this work they must blend. Review and Herald, Feb. 25, 1902. {ChS 42.2}

You can’t think straight in the brain? It’s called der brain. What was needed in 1887 as a consequence of all the messages to Laodicea that revealed to them as God reveals in the time of judgment the things that mar our life? What did God do to revive that company in that condition?

The Lord in His great mercy sent a most precious message to His people through Elders Waggoner and Jones. {TM 91.2}

What was needed? A revival, a quickening of the mind that had become paralysed through Laodicean mentality.

This message was to bring more prominently before the world the uplifted Saviour, the sacrifice for the sins of the whole world. It presented justification through faith in the Surety; it invited the people to receive the righteousness of Christ, which is made manifest in obedience to all the commandments of God. Many had lost sight of Jesus. They needed to have their eyes directed to His divine person, His merits, and His changeless love for the human family. All power is given into His hands, that He may dispense rich gifts unto men, imparting the priceless gift of His own righteousness to the helpless human agent. This is the message that God commanded to be given to the world. It is the third angel’s message, which is to be proclaimed with a loud voice, and attended with the outpouring of His Spirit in a large measure. {TM 91.2}

That is what was needed she said in 1887. When did the Lord give it?  The next year. Isn’t it living? Can’t you appreciate it? Attend diligently to see the line up from 1888 through to our time the exact work of the Lord in this everlasting covenant gospel transaction for the people of the judgement. He gave the message that would quicken and awaken and what was the message? It was the uplifting of the saviour, the sacrifice of the sins of the world many people have made very little of the actual of the message of 1888. They look at the peripheries and that say it was the power of the Holy Spirit that came upon the people as a magician. They do not look at the actual uplifting of Jesus that came in the message and the uplifting of Jesus in living terms.

In 1888 there was need of a revival. Do we need that now? Right here we need it and it must be rekindled right now. Do you need to know when you have fallen again and again? You see yourself in a true condition of depraved lukewarmness and you try to do it and you can’t recover yourself from it. What do you need to see? Especially when Satan whispers; See, how many times you’ve tried? See how absolutely hopeless you are? You’ve tried countless times and you’ve fallen flat on your face again. Your case is hopeless. He whispers that. Because the voice of Satan whispers that and the Lord shows me my sins, we confuse the voice of Satan with the voice of God. We think God is an enemy, Jacobs’s trouble. We need to see Jesus when we are down there. Where do you see Jesus? Up there or when I am in the pit? If you see Jesus up there, you will say; I’m never going to make it. He will try to reach his hand to you and you won’t be able to take hold of it. You need to see your totally depraved condition. This was the message of 1888. God doesn’t just start talking, He says listen to me.

Isaiah 51:1 Hearken to me, ye that follow after righteousness, ye that seek the LORD: look unto the rock [whence] ye are hewn, and to the hole of the pit [whence] ye are digged. 2 Look unto Abraham your father, and unto Sarah [that] bare you: for I called him alone, and blessed him, and increased him. 3 For the LORD shall comfort Zion: he will comfort all her waste places; and he will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody.

Here is this pit of an experience and what are we called upon to do? Look to the pit where thou wast hewed. You are in the pit again; look to where you came from in the first place. How did you get out of there? Look to the rock whence you are hewn. Who is our rock? Jesus. The pit and the rock, does that ring a bell? Where did our rock come to? Into the very pit didn’t He? Psalms 40, 69, and 22 were dwelt upon in 1888. When I first read them and I wanted to raise them up before the ministry, it was as if they hadn’t heard those texts before and I was bamboozled. I said, you claim to be the people of 1888 and you don’t know these texts? I was shaking my head wondering what was going on. The 1888 revival must be revived among us today.

Psalm 40:1 To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David. I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. 2 He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, [and] established my goings.

Who is speaking? David? When I asked that question to a minister of the company I was with, he said David. What did Jesus do when He was speaking to the people on the road to Emmaus? What did He speak of himself? From the Psalms and the prophets. The anathema mentality is in these people that don’t want to hear and believe this is, He cried to Him that saved Him from death. Where is that written?

Hebrews 5:7 Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared; 8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; 9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;

To Him that could save Him from death; what? He needed a Saviour? An anathema. I have received flak in proclaiming that Jesus came and placed himself where He cried to be saved. I was told, no, He is our saviour, He didn’t need salvation. That is the mentality of a fallen ministry. He brought me up also out of a horrible pit. Why is this important for you to see and understand?

Look to the Pit from Which You Are Dug, Look to the Rock

This is what it means:

Psalm 88:4 I am counted with them that go down into the pit: I am as a man [that hath] no strength:

Is that Laodicea? No strength, I’m sleeping I can’t get my head into action.

Psalm 88:5 Free among the dead, like the slain that lie in the grave, whom thou rememberest no more: and they are cut off from thy hand. 6 Thou hast laid me in the lowest pit, in darkness, in the deeps. 7 Thy wrath lieth hard upon me, and thou hast afflicted [me] with all thy waves.

Who is speaking? Jesus. Why do you need to know that? Do you feel like you are in the pits? As you are in the pits, what do you need to know? That Jesus was counted among you. Jesus was in the pit with you. And not just was, but is. When you know how in the pit your experience is in this time in the period of the judgment, when you discover the depravity of your condition, you must see the depravity of Jesus Christ with you because if you don’t, you will never get out of the pit. This is the appeal of Jesus to us. Look at the plaintive cry of our high priest.

Lamentations 1:12 [Is it] nothing to you, all ye that pass by? behold, and see if there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow, which is done unto me, wherewith the LORD hath afflicted [me] in the day of his fierce anger.

Plaintively crying, is it nothing to you? Look what I’ve done for you.

Lamentations 1:13 From above hath he sent fire into my bones, and it prevaileth against them: he hath spread a net for my feet, he hath turned me back: he hath made me desolate [and] faint all the day. 14 The yoke of my transgressions is bound by his hand: they are wreathed, [and] come up upon my neck: he hath made my strength to fall, the Lord hath delivered me into [their] hands, [from whom] I am not able to rise up.

Today you understand the word wreathed very well don’t you. The sins are wreathed, what is a gene? A wreath correct? That spiral with all my genetic makeup, that is what the Father placed into the genetic makeup of the man Christ Jesus and stirred it up. They came up upon my neck. A person who’s heart is playing up has panic. It is a revelation of a heart condition when the throat is strangled, Jesus experienced that.

Lamentations 1:15 The Lord hath trodden under foot all my mighty [men] in the midst of me: he hath called an assembly against me to crush my young men: the Lord hath trodden the virgin, the daughter of Judah, [as] in a winepress.

Remember the story by John Bunyan ‘The Holy War’ of Mansoul? All the mighty men in him, he trod them.

Lamentations 1:16 For these [things] I weep; mine eye, mine eye runneth down with water, because the comforter that should relieve my soul is far from me: my children are desolate, because the enemy prevailed.

Who is speaking? My Lord and Saviour. He is describing your and my experience in the pit. Look to the pit from where you are digged. The rock, who fell down in the pit with me. He himself needed to be placed on the rock. It says in Psalm 40 that more than the hairs of my head are my sins which the Lord wreathed. It perplexes me when I quote scripture in simple language it can’t be understood but when I read it out in simple language the ministers still persecute me.

How few have any conception of the anguish which rent the heart of the Son of God during His thirty years of life upon earth. The path from the manger to Calvary was shadowed by sorrow and grief. He was the Man of Sorrows, and endured such heartache as no human language can portray. {TMK 66.2}

If you go through heartache you can’t tell anyone, He went through worse.

He could have said in truth, “Behold, and see if there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow” (Lamentations 1:12). His suffering was the deepest anguish of the soul; and what man could have sympathy with the soul anguish of the Son of the infinite God? {TMK 66.2}

He was alone. You think you are alone? In all reality Jesus was alone because you can never enter into the enormity of His anguish when He was in that situation but you can know He knows your anguish because He had yours.

Hating sin with a perfect hatred, He yet gathered to His soul the sins of the whole world, as He trod the path to Calvary, suffering the penalty of the transgressor. Guiltless, He bore the punishment of the guilty; innocent, yet offering Himself to bear the penalty of the transgression of the law of God. The punishment of the sins of every soul was borne by the Son of the infinite God. The guilt of every sin pressed its weight upon the divine soul of the world’s Redeemer. He who knew no sin became sin for us that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him. In assuming the nature of man, He placed Himself where He was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities, that by His stripes we might be healed. {TMK 66.2}

When you are in a depraved sense in the time of judgement, in a time of extreme sinfulness in yourself, He did exactly that so you could be healed by His stripes.

In His humanity Christ was tried with as much greater temptation, with as much more persevering energy than man is tried by the evil one, as His nature was greater than man’s. This is a deep mysterious truth, that Christ is bound to humanity by the most sensitive sympathies. The evil works, the evil thoughts, the evil words of every son and daughter of Adam press upon His divine soul. The sins of men called for retribution upon Himself, for He had become man’s substitute, and took upon Him the sins of the world. He bore the sins of every sinner, for all transgressions were imputed unto Him. . . . “How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation?” (Hebrews 2:3). {TMK 66.3}

How can we survive through the experiences of the judgement that reveals to us the depravity of our condition if we reject the reality of Jesus as we have contemplated? I repeat that this is the revival of the 1888 message. This was the core of what they represented. People say I keep highlighting this subject all the time, it is a mystery, you shouldn’t do that. You and I together with Jesus is the essential knowledge to survive through the time of Jacobs’s trouble. What does He invite me to do after we see what He has done after He suffered in his flesh? What has He invited us to do? He who is this wonderful saviour and God, what we are studying was all in the mind of God before any creation. The I Am knew it then.  Here is His invitation to the people who are sleeping.

The Sleepy Woman

This is from the woman in Song of Solomon. She is in her sleepy condition. I sleep and I can hear Him knocking and His finger poking through the hole and He is trying to open the latch. Laodicea, the woman that can’t get up.

Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. 21 To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.

What’s He pointing to? He is pointing to His experience in the pit. He says I supped with you, will you sup with me? He ate and drank of the bitter cup of the discovery of sinfulness in the internal soul and as He experienced that, He says will you let me in when you go through your bitter experience? I want to sup with you. How feeble we have picked this up. We can sit at the table together, no, the people don’t want Him. We will not have this man rule over us. We don’t that message that He became sin for us. We want to feel our Pharisaic pride left alone. But to experience that my sin was what He suffered under is an anathema but that is what will be the destruction when the rock strikes. We will see that vividly. When we have fallen and our sins are revealed to us by the fall, behold Jesus. He is right there with you, listen to Him speaking. He is the great I am to whom the past, present and future is all present tense. What He experienced in Gethsemane that experience is still present with Him now. Remember the tears, they were flowing like a bucket. He was suffering and tearing and weeping.

Through all our trials we have a never-failing Helper. He does not leave us alone to struggle with temptation, to battle with evil, and be finally crushed with burdens and sorrow. Though now He is hidden from mortal sight, the ear of faith can hear His voice saying, Fear not; I am with you. {DA 483.1}

Do you have the ear of faith that when you feel you are so depraved and hopeless that it’s burning through your bones? Do you have the faith that what He is saying is true?

“I am He that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive forevermore.” Revelation 1:18. I have endured your sorrows, experienced your struggles, encountered your temptations. I know your tears; I also have wept. The griefs that lie too deep to be breathed into any human ear, I know. Think not that you are desolate and forsaken. {DA 483.1}

When you are pounded with the awareness of your sin, you feel desolate and forsaken. Jacob you are not desolate and forsaken, battle on.

Though your pain touch no responsive chord in any heart on earth, look unto Me, and live. ” {DA 483.1}

What is He saying? You think you are the only one going through it, look unto me. This is necessary to survive. When you fall and you fall again and you are in a depraved condition under the experiences of the judgement look to Micah 7. This is the continual requirement in the day of the judgement as the sins that I don’t know will be brought to my attention systematically to cleanse me form every defilement.

Micah 7:8 Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD [shall be] a light unto me. 9 I will bear the indignation of the LORD, because I have sinned against him, until he plead my cause, and execute judgment for me: he will bring me forth to the light, [and] I shall behold his righteousness.

These are the living truths of 1888 which were presented to revive a church that had become the sleepy woman behind the door. He has partaken with you and now partake of with Him to raise you as He was raised by faith. How many times do we fall? If you are a wise person in this time of judgement and you are going through an experience in this time, Psalm 37 is relevant to the people just now.

Psalm 37:23 The steps of a [good] man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way. 24 Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth [him with] his hand.

How many times will you fall? This good man is called a just man. Why is He just? Because God has justified Him.

Proverbs 24:16 For a just [man] falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief.

This is the everlasting covenant, the sure mercies of David. Do you feel a revival of hope inside of you? That is what God brought. He brought this to the church that was Laodicean in experience. The book Steps to Christ was written after 1888 because of the message and its poor reception.

Revival and Reformation

Since we are sinful, unholy, we cannot perfectly obey the holy law. We have no righteousness of our own with which to meet the claims of the law of God. But Christ has made a way of escape for us. He lived on earth amid trials and temptations such as we have to meet. He lived a sinless life. He died for us, and now He offers to take our sins and give us His righteousness. If you give yourself to Him, and accept Him as your Saviour, then, sinful as your life may have been, for His sake you are accounted righteous. Christ’s character stands in place of your character, and you are accepted before God just as if you had not sinned. {SC 62.2}

Do you believe that? Blend it with the next statement. What you have gained by the revival you must maintain.

More than this, Christ changes the heart. He abides in your heart by faith. You are to maintain this connection with Christ by faith and the continual surrender of your will to Him; and so long as you do this, He will work in you to will and to do according to His good pleasure. So you may say, “The life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20. So Jesus said to His disciples, “It is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.” Matthew 10:20. Then with Christ working in you, you will manifest the same spirit and do the same good works –works of righteousness, obedience. {SC 62.3}

From this revival of gaining the answer, it is your responsibility to retain the deep moving’s of the Holy Spirit as he reveals Jesus to us as he did in 1888. As you keep on doing that, you will go forward and launch into the experiences of the future.

The time of test is just upon us, for the loud cry of the third angel has already begun in the revelation of the righteousness of Christ, the sin-pardoning Redeemer. This is the beginning of the light of the angel whose glory shall fill the whole earth. For it is the work of every one to whom the message of warning has come, to lift up Jesus, to present Him to the world as revealed in types, as shadowed in symbols, as manifested in the revelations of the prophets, as unveiled in the lessons given to His disciples and in the wonderful miracles wrought for the sons of men. Search the Scriptures; for they are they that testify of Him. {1SM 362.4}

If you would stand through the time of trouble, you must know Christ, and appropriate the gift of His righteousness, which He imputes to the repentant sinner.–The Review and Herald, Nov. 22, 1892. {1SM 363.1}

Why was 1888 given? Why have I preached this to you today? The text is upon us as it was on them. When the 1888 message was given, right there in 1888 the enemy was formulating the test, the Sunday law in 1888. The spirit of God knew they needed the revival just then as they were going to be tested on the Sabbath and so we are. Sunday laws were formed over the period of 1883 onwards through to 1888 very carefully and subtly and by the time they got to 1892/3 there were Sunday laws and the people were to be tested. See how imminent the time of final test is. It is more present than we think. May God help us.

Amen.

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Posted on January 15, 2011, in Sermons by John Thiel, The Consummation of the Everlasting Covenant. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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