That the World May Know

By John Thiel

John 17:21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, [art] in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.

17:23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.

We have contemplated the relationships that should be in the home and church but foremost the relationship I should have with my Lord and Saviour to make those relationships take place. This relationship of my personal walk with God, in the home and church is to spill out into our relationships with the world.

Those who are Christians in the home will be Christians in the church and in the world. {SW, January 19, 1904 par. 2}

If we display relationship flaws in the home, discourtesies of husband to wife, children to parents and vice versa, if we display unkind, quarrelsome ways in the home these will to a greater or lesser degree be displayed in the church and in the society. Home life will be displayed outwardly in even the slightest demeanour expressions.

Ever speak kindly; do not throw into the tones of your voice that which will be taken by others as irritability. Modulate even the tones of your voice. Let only love, gentleness, and mildness be expressed in your countenance and in your voice. Make it a business to shed rays of sunlight, but never leave a cloud. {HP 204.3}

Can you successfully do that without being in a very close intimate relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ in your heart? That is why our focus in the beginning has been to be under the spell of the sense of God’s presence. We need to have a deep sense of God’s presence and then indeed under the sacred influence of that holy presence even the tones of my voice will be modulated in expression to each other. Even my facial features will express the sense of God’s presence. But if I am under this natural human state without the sense of God’s presence then I will have relationship flaws where I will be irritated by what is going on around me. I will find fault with my family members and with my church fellowship friends and members and that will extend even into society and into heaven itself.

Are you individually daily preparing that you can unite with the family of heaven? Are you quarrelsome here? Are you finding fault with your household here? If you are, you will find fault with them in heaven. Your character is being tested and proved in this life, whether you will make a peaceable subject of God’s kingdom in heaven. {HP 227.5}

That’s what our existence on this planet is and Jesus is coming very soon. My heart yearns for a more realistic relationship with my Lord and saviour so my demeanour and deportment will be a heavenly one that I can in heaven be at peace among my brethren and sisters. What is the overarching purpose of my relationship with God, home and church? That the world may know. This study is to focus on our social relationships with the world around us.

Isaiah 43:10 Ye [are] my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I [am] he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

43:11 I, [even] I, [am] the LORD; and beside me [there is] no saviour.

43:12 I have declared, and have saved, and I have showed, when [there was] no strange [god] among you: therefore ye [are] my witnesses, saith the LORD, that I [am] God.

What is the message of the first angel under the three angels messages? Fear God and what? Give him the glory. What does that mean?

“The word “glory” in the Greek New Testament is doxa which means an opinion, an estimation, or reputation in which one is held. It refers to that which should accrue to God as praise, thanksgiving, obedience, reverence, and service because of who God is and what God does (past, present, and future). In other words, giving glory to God is tied in with the knowledge of God (revelation of God), and knowing God personally (response to God).” http://www.abecedarian.org/Pages/namesofGod.htm

Give him the character before the people by you demonstrating his character. This is the content of the loud cry. We have so many various theories of what the loud cry is but the one that is the loud cry of the third angel is just this.

Thus will the truth be brought into practical life, and thus will be answered the prayer of Christ, uttered just before His humiliation and death: “That they all may be one; as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us: that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me.” John 17:21. {6T 401.1}

Is this what the loud cry is meant to impart that the world would believe?

The love of Christ, the love of our brethren, will testify to the world that we have been with Jesus and learned of Him. Then will the message of the third angel swell to a loud cry, and the whole earth will be lightened with the glory of the Lord. {6T 401.1}

What will happen? In Gods people who are exercising the relationship with their Lord in the home, in the church, this relationship of love will spill into society with a loud cry. Your actions speak louder than your words. In our relationships in the home and church they will speak loudly to the world around us if we have the love that Jesus is. For this to spill over from the family, to the church and society, notice Isaiah. In the family and in the church that is trying to stand up for pure truth in these last days, there is this danger.

Isaiah 65:1 I am sought of [them that] asked not [for me]; I am found of [them that] sought me not: I said, Behold me, behold me, unto a nation [that] was not called by my name.

65:2 I have spread out my hands all the day unto a rebellious people, which walketh in a way [that was] not good, after their own thoughts;

65:5 Which say, Stand by thyself, come not near to me; for I am holier than thou. These [are] a smoke in my nose, a fire that burneth all the day.

When you follow your own thoughts in the kingdom of heaven, this characteristic is manifest. I am unable to get very close to unbelievers because I am holier than though. The Pharisees and the Laodiceans are of that nature. It is this mentality that destroys the glory of God to the world around us.

Deportment in the Family

You have a lovely family and you want to protect them from the worlds influences therefore you keep close to yourselves and in your love and affection you extend them to your family.

It is the high privilege and the solemn duty of Christians to make each other happy in their married life; but there is positive danger in making self all absorbing, pouring out all the wealth of affection upon each other, and being too well satisfied with such a life. All this savors of selfishness. {HP 207.3}

Instead of shutting up their love and sympathy to themselves, they should seize every opportunity of contributing to the good of others, distributing the abundance of affection in a chaste and sanctified love for souls that in the sight of God are just as precious as themselves, being purchased by the infinite sacrifice of His only-begotten Son. Kind words, looks of sympathy, expressions of appreciation, would be to many a struggling and lonely one as the cup of cold water to a thirsty soul. A word of sympathy, an act of kindness, would lift burdens that are resting heavily upon some shoulders. And words of counsel, admonitions, warnings from a heart sanctified by love, are just as essential as an effusion of loving sentiments and expressions of appreciation. Every word or deed of unselfish kindness to souls with whom we are brought in connection is an expression of the love that Jesus has manifested for the whole human family. {HP 207.4}

If we have the love within the home toward husband and wife and children, that love is to spill out in expressionisms. There needs to be an understanding that just because husband and wife expend kind looks and words upon others outside, there should be no jealously in the home. It is often expressed you show that person kindness and love, I’m the person who deserves that. To share that which we have in the family has a place with the people outside as people especially today are hungering for affection.

Within the Church

We are not to stand aside and say we are the elect of God and we must be separated from everyone else.

It is high time that believers should stand shoulder to shoulder and strive together for eternal life, in place of holding themselves aloof and expressing by word and action, “I am holier than thou.” {TM 186.1}

I have a higher standard than my brother or sister so I keep a certain distance. We are to stand shoulder to shoulder and not do that in word and action, I am holier than thou.

Those who would exert all their powers for the salvation of perishing souls must come heart to heart, and be bound together in cords of sympathy and love. The brethren should manifest the same spirit as that manifested by our merciful and faithful High Priest, who is touched with the feeling of our infirmities. {TM 186.1}

We are to stand side by side without the slightest hint by word or action that oh, you are not in such a high standard as I am. We come to society that is going to benefit from this correct view in contrast to the incorrect one. The statement that I am holier than thou must not in any hint upon Gods people towards society.

The lost coin, in the Saviour’s parable, though lying in the dirt and rubbish, was a piece of silver still. Its owner sought it because it was of value. So every soul, however degraded by sin, is in God’s sight accounted precious. As the coin bore the image and superscription of the reigning power, so man at his creation bore the image and superscription of God. Though now marred and dim through the influence of sin, the traces of this inscription remain upon every soul. God desires to recover that soul and to retrace upon it His own image in righteousness and holiness. {MH 163.1}

It is the one who that is unconscious of his degraded position.

How little do we enter into sympathy with Christ on that which should be the strongest bond of union between us and Him–compassion for depraved, guilty, suffering souls, dead in trespasses and sins! {MH 163.2}

That was Christ’s heart throb and how little do we enter into sympathy with Christ on that.

The inhumanity of man toward man is our greatest sin. Many think that they are representing the justice of God while they wholly fail of representing His tenderness and His great love. Often the ones whom they meet with sternness and severity are under the stress of temptation. Satan is wrestling with these souls, and harsh, unsympathetic words discourage them and cause them to fall a prey to the tempter’s power. {MH 163.2}

If I exercise those harsh unsympathetic words in the church or home, how will it spill out?

It is a delicate matter to deal with minds. Only He who reads the heart knows how to bring men to repentance. Only His wisdom can give us success in reaching the lost. You may stand up stiffly, feeling, “I am holier than thou,” and it matters not how correct your reasoning or how true your words; they will never touch hearts. The love of Christ, manifested in word and act, will win its way to the soul, when the reiteration of precept or argument would accomplish nothing. {MH 163.3}

What do we want to accomplish in our relationship with humanity whether in the home or society? Is it not to follow in the mental exercises of Jesus Christ? He was pure and holy and what did he do? He so loved the world that he gave himself to dwell among trash because that was the exact reality but the trash had markings of Gods original creation and he wanted to bring that out and this is our relationship with our Lord that we must enter into. The unbelieving world around us must see us and feel Christ winning them. Our relationship to society around us, the lost coins must actually feel that although we are where we are in our progress with the Lord, they must never feel that we are standing back and giving them a sense that we are holier than though. Although Jesus was so lofty and holy his purity never made him austere towards others.

Proverbs 18:24 A man [that hath] friends must show himself friendly: and there is a friend [that] sticketh closer than a brother.

If we would have the friends that Jesus wanted to make friends with, we must show ourselves friendly. Not missing the eye contact of kindness as we meet the people. Not missing the language of the facial features and the language of the tone of voice. This is what the word of God speaks to us today.

Do not hold yourselves aloof from them, but come close to them. {RH, November 10, 1885 par. 15}

It is through the social relations that Christianity comes in contact with the world. Every man or woman who has received the divine illumination is to shed light on the dark pathway of those who are unacquainted with the better way. Social power, sanctified by the Spirit of Christ, must be improved in bringing souls to the Saviour. Christ is not to be hid away in the heart as a coveted treasure, sacred and sweet, to be enjoyed solely by the possessor. We are to have Christ in us as a well of water, springing up into everlasting life, refreshing all who come in contact with us. {MH 496.1}

Have we got something to learn? Refreshing all who come in contact with us. I love coming in contact with a drunkard who expects me to reject them but I say hello mate how are you going. I’m dressed like this and here is me speaking like that to him. I’m speaking his language and meeting him where he is. I never forget the day i met an alcoholic in door knocking who had been dried up but still an alcoholic. I studied with him and I couldn’t. He told me his brain was spaghetti. I had to change my whole method of reaching this man and trying to bring him to the reality of God’s word. He was an Irish Catholic and by God’s grace reaching in where he was, he was recovered 100% from alcoholic brain damage. God’s grace can do anything if only we will embrace what we are learning and what God has been trying to teach us.

The Lord Jesus demands our acknowledgment of the rights of every man. Men’s social rights, and their rights as Christians, are to be taken into consideration. All are to be treated with refinement and delicacy, as the sons and daughters of God. {MH 489.3}

Some say, but they are not sons and daughters of God as we have given our hearts to Jesus, they haven’t. They are because the image of creation is still upon them.

Christianity will make a man a gentleman. Christ was courteous, even to His persecutors; and His true followers will manifest the same spirit. Look at Paul when brought before rulers. His speech before Agrippa is an illustration of true courtesy as well as persuasive eloquence. The gospel does not encourage the formal politeness current with the world, but the courtesy that springs from real kindness of heart. {MH 489.4}

If you meet a person who has formal politeness, how do you feel? We feel this is not genuine. But when you feel someone drawing nigh to you who is very polite but his facial features and the tone of his voice are of such a nature, you feel it comes from the heart you immediately feel warm and so do the people around us. We are not to communicate the sense that we are holier than thou. Does that mean in my communication with people around me with social expectations, I’m going to their parties and weddings which are not godly weddings? Does that mean that? Social connection is power. It also says, Come out from among them and touch not the unclean thing. You are to be in the world but not of the world. How do we get the balance of social intercourse and remaining untouched by the world. Jesus did it.

We are to beware of indulging a spirit of bigotry and intolerance. We are not to stand aside from others in a spirit that seems to say, “Come not near to me, for I am holier than thou.” We are not to shut ourselves away from our fellow human beings, but are to seek to impart to them the precious truth that has blessed our own hearts. . . . But if we are Christians, having the spirit of Him who died to save men from their sins, we shall love the souls of our fellow men too well to countenance their sinful pleasures by our presence and our influence. . . . Such a course, so far from benefiting them, would only cause them to doubt the reality of our religion. . . . We should be firmly rooted in the conviction that whatever in any sense turns aside from truth and justice in our association and partnership with men, cannot benefit us and greatly dishonors God. {HP 310.4}

When people invite me to certain of their activities and I know what is going on, I will say to them thank you for the invitation, I appreciate your thought but bear with me please, you will have alcohol and dancing, you know that while I really care for you and I wish I could be there, that prevents me. Did I show a spirit of bigotry? This is not bigotry. This is caring for their souls.

The Christian is to stand on vantage ground as a laborer together with God. But he is never to exalt himself. He is firmly to refuse the inducements presented by those who have no love for truth and righteousness, but his refusal is to be made in a Christlike spirit, not Pharisaically, with an attitude which says, “Stand aside; I am holier than thou.” He must show that he cannot enter into sin because he is pledged by a most holy profession to honor the Lord Jesus Christ. By precept and example he is to discountenance all departure from Bible principles. But at the same time, by the manifestation of Christlike love, he is to make the religion of Christ attractive. He is to allow no bigotry to be seen in his life, but is to reveal tender compassion for those who have wandered away from Christ. . . . {TMK 128.4}

We are not to go if they say they will provide for us when we know full well they don’t love what we stand for. I once worked with sneering ruffians when I was brick laying and they invited me to their parties and they used to make fun of me and I always laughed with them but stood true to principle and in the end they respected me. God wants us to learn these principles to be on a loving kind relationship to the most obnoxious characters because underneath their insanity there is a sane kernel and we are trying to reach that. I learnt it all the more when I was looking after deranged people as a nurse. They eat out of your hand when you respect them. They do not behave in an insane manner anymore. Remember Jesus with the demoniacs. They came racing down and the disciples ran away but Jesus stood his ground. The element in those demoniacs recognised I want Jesus and Jesus reached out and found them. We are to have a relationship of love so the world will know that Jesus has come to save.

If we want to find a place in the heavenly society, we who have lost the relationship of the Godhead that was imparted to us where it was said let us make man in our own image. If I would have that, I must attentively and diligently embrace the restorative skills of the gospel. The gospel will impart to us restorative skills in relationships. Secondly, to achieve that, we cannot rely merely upon theorising of what I should do and be merely moralising. To achieve such skills I must have a living connection with my God. If I do not have that, I can theorise as much as I like but the undercurrent of my natural nature will break through. I must be brought totally down like Nebuchadnezzar and lift up my eyes to heaven and receive the sanity that comes from God, a living connection with God and a sense of his presence. Get into a deep relationship with Jesus Christ so you are not seen but Jesus Christ alone. By savouring his holy presence, my words and tone of voice and demeanour and deportment one to the other in the home with all different temperaments, it is in Gods order we can cultivate kindness and respect. By a relationship with God I can come close to my family member and cultivate a patient and long suffering spirit with the things that chafe me.

That is how my character is to be developed in my relationship for heaven. Unselfishness will be manifested by pleasing the other rather than demanding my rights. In my interaction in the family and church there will be no harsh denouncing in my thoughts, words or deeds. Mark this husbands and wives. No harsh denouncing by thought, word or deed. Not even in your thought because if you think it, the atmosphere will arise. You can give a smile but still it’s hard. Patient, long suffering courtesy even to those who differ from us. This is the consequence of a deep relationship with God. You can’t do this unless Jesus is in you. Unless we overlook the faults of others and nailing a person down, this is not the behaviour of true relationships in Jesus Christ. We overlook the faults of others and all we do is uplift the good in each other. When we come to church, I’ve heard some say, I don’t like coming to church because this thing or that thing continually churns me. I can overlook that. Don’t look at faults of others but look for the good. Instead of expecting others to respect my rights, I rather cheer them along by encouraging hope. As this is done with an insane person, if we do it to each other, all the negativities Satan wants to crowd in on us will be removed. We will enjoy each other’s company as all we are interested in is all the goods points that are happening by God’s grace and all the others will fall away in the church and others who would be harsh and violent against us we can diffuse all that by just concentrating on the good points in all around us. Have you noticed that every activity right through to eternity hinges on relationships. Whatever you do, you can’t get away from relationships. Relationships are the very thing that lubricates all activity. May we be found at Christs coming with all our relationship problems resolved within my own soul, home, church and as representatives to the world.

2 Peter 3:13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.

3:14 Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.

3:15 And account [that] the longsuffering of our Lord [is] salvation;

Amen.

Posted on April 17, 2011, in Divine Service Sermons, Sermons by John Thiel. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. lubumba boston

    WHAT A WOUNDER FULL WORDS OF ENCOURAGEMENTS .AM REALLY BLESSED BY THEM.GOD BLESS YOU ALL.

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