Our Commitment to the Three Angels Messages

By John Thiel, Audio: mp3

How close is it to the coming of Jesus? We have become vividly aware that we are indeed at the very last of the generation that is to see Jesus coming. All that Jesus foretold is culminating and I have a deep sense that during this year and the next, we will be meeting some very serious circumstances. We have been given the assistance of the angels but it is up to us whether we will actually be in tune with them. I would like to spend time with you this hour in considering our commitment to the three angels and their messages and that other angel of Revelation 18.

We are often fascinated in reference to angels, as our Scripture reading expressed – “Are they not ministering spirits?” Angels are actually ministering for us, especially those who are the heirs of salvation. They are “ministering spirits, sent forth to minister” to us. One aspect of their ministry is to communicate light from heaven to us. We see this in the words of the angel of Revelation 1:1 where the message was conveyed from Jesus via the angel to John the revelator and in Daniel 9:20-23 you have Gabriel speaking being sent from heaven to administer light to Daniel.

It is those who receive this information that the angels communicate to. It is theirs to communicate it to their fellow men. That was John the revelator and Daniel. They communicated what the angels communicated to them to their fellow men and the writings that they put down in the Bible. We have the angelic communications to this planet earth.

Revelation 14:6 And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people,

Here is an angel flying in the midst of heaven communicating the everlasting gospel.

Revelation 14:7 Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters. 8 And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. 9 And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive [his] mark in his forehead, or in his hand, 10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: 11 And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. 12 Here is the patience of the saints: here [are] they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.

We have just been reading the most momentous truths in a summary of these few verses, truths that are specific for us. In verses 6 and 7 we have the intensity of the everlasting gospel culminating in the hour of God’s judgment. That was being communicated that it was the beginning of the hour of God’s judgment, “it has come”. We know that it came and started in 1844 and because the churches who were given this message from the angels and from this angel, were “blasé” about that, they became so used to going to church Sunday at that time and just being pew warmers.

They didn’t pay attention to that message and therefore the message was that they are fallen, “Babylon is fallen” and the terrible denunciation of verses 9-12 of the third angel of the terrible wrath of God being poured upon the earth imminently and anybody who would be worshipping the beast or his image or receive his mark would receive the outpouring of God’s wrath. And then, “Here is the patience of the saints, here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.”

Sodom and Gomorrah

The words of these angels are very similar to the angels who were sent to Sodom and Gomorrah. Sodom and Gomorrah was about to be destroyed and they were sent to take whoever would listen to them and there was Lot, just one family there. And even that family was not willing to listen to His angels apart from Lot and he was very tardy himself. This is the same today. As these angels are giving us messages, we are to understand how they are giving these messages, because it says that they were flying in the midst of heaven.

Have you ever seen an angel flying in the midst of heaven giving you these messages? Of course not. They are angels that are communicating the messages to human beings, like they have all the way through. It is the human beings who are sent of these angels and of God that are the preachers. These realities we need to be very conscious of. Not only whether we are actually going to pay attention to these messages, but whether we will be instruments to proclaim these messages.

We read in Selected Messages where we have just one of these messengers, human beings that need to be paid attention to, because the angel spoke to this person. But it’s not only that person.

During the past fifty years of my life, I have had precious opportunities to obtain an experience. I have had an experience in the first, second, and third angels’ messages. {2SM 387.1}

What was involved here? Not just merely listening to the angels’ messages, but having an experience in those angels’ messages. Here was one person, that was:

The angels are represented as flying in the midst of heaven, proclaiming to the world a message of warning, and having a direct bearing upon the people living {2SM 387.1}

When? Now. They have a direct bearing upon the people living:

in the last days of this earth’s history. No one hears the voice of these angels, for they are a symbol to represent the people of God {2SM 387.1}

Who are they?

the people of God who are working in harmony with the universe of heaven. Men and women, enlightened by the Spirit of God and sanctified through the truth, proclaim the three messages in their order. {2SM 387.1}

Very important words here. I’m sharing with you things I’ve share with you before but this time I want us to hone in very much more clearly upon our personal call that they Lord is giving us here. What are these angels? They are representing the people who have an experience in that message. What was the experience? They are experiencing a working in harmony with the universe of heaven. Say, is that what you’re doing?

They are working in harmony with the universe of heaven. Men and women, enlightened by the Spirit of God and sanctified through the truth. {2SM 387.1}

It is these people that proclaim the three messages in their order.

At the beginning of this year, the Lord is giving us a last opportunity. How long have these messages been going for? It is now the fourth and fifth generation of my age, and the younger one still, the sixth, and the seventh. For such a long time, the angels have been trying to make an impact on this earth. Are they succeeding? Is it like Sodom and Gomorrah? Very lethargic responses. The responses that are called for are a response to work energetically, to work in harmony with the universe of heaven. Not with our own opinion, not with what we hear other people say, but that which the Lord has sent by His angels.

I cannot impress this challenge deep enough for me to wake up, and I hope that we can all wake up that this is now our last opportunity as we are receiving these messages of whether we are going to do what these angels are telling us to do. According to the third angel, we must not be in any way attached to any of the Babylonish ways; we have to get right out of that. As true, you have on your bulletin “Historic Advent Sabbath Society“, we are here as a society, trying to hold on to the historic appreciation of original Adventism, which is an experience in the three angels messages, as we read there.

We may be familiar, we can read these texts, we’ve done many times before. But we fail to pick up the impact upon our actual life, our experience, this is our grave danger. The question is: Are we among those who are working in harmony with the universe of heaven, and letting the truth sanctify us? Our ears tuned, as we were just singing “Give me Samuel’s ear, give me his mind, give me his voice”, are we tuned to what the angels say to us, as Samuel was tuned to the voice speaking to him? The influence of heaven that is to affect us, this is what we are here to really tune into.

Isaiah 13

In view of that great day the word of God, in the most solemn and impressive language, calls upon His people to arouse from their spiritual lethargy and to seek His face with repentance and humiliation: “Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in My holy mountain” {GC 311.1}

Then it says:

To prepare a people to stand in the day of God, a great work of reform was to be accomplished. God saw that many of His professed people were not building for eternity, and in His mercy He was about to send a message of warning to arouse them from their stupor and lead them to make ready for the coming of the Lord. {GC 311.2}

The angels were sent because what? What was happening to us? We were becoming stupefied, they were stupefied in 1844. How stupefied are you and I today? Stupefied into such circumstances of life that we can hardly look up with energy? That’s how I feel when I drive all night. I’m just recovering, and you feel like doing nothing. We are stupefied to do very little in response to the awakening messages that these angels want to communicate to us. We are to prepare to stand in the great day of God, and He, in His mercy, is trying to wake us up to the seriousness.

This warning is brought to view in Revelation 14. Here is a threefold message represented as proclaimed by heavenly beings and immediately followed by the coming of the Son of man to reap “the harvest of the earth.” (Because that’s verses 14 and 15) The first of these warnings announces the approaching judgment. The prophet beheld an angel flying “in the midst of heaven…” {GC 311.3}

The first angel’s message

This message is declared to be a part of “the everlasting gospel.” The work of preaching the gospel has not been committed to angels, but has been entrusted to men. Holy angels have been employed in directing this work, they have in charge the great movements for the salvation of men; but the actual proclamation of the gospel is performed by the servants of Christ upon the earth. {GC 312.1}

Who are they?

Faithful men, who were obedient to the promptings of God’s Spirit and the teachings of His word, were to proclaim this warning to the world. They were those who had taken heed to the “sure word of prophecy,” … They had been seeking the knowledge of God more than all hid treasures, counting it “better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.” Proverbs 3:14. And the Lord revealed to them the great things of the kingdom. “The secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him; ….” Psalm 25:14. {GC 312.2}

It was not the scholarly theologians who had an understanding of this truth, and engaged in its proclamation. Had these been faithful watchmen, diligently and prayerfully searching the Scriptures, they would have known the time of night; {GC 312.3}

So who was it? Not the theologians, it was the common people. It is today exactly the same. Are you a common person? An ordinary laborer? An ordinary person working to earn their income? It is addressed to us. He wants us to be responsive to this urgency in which we are at this present time living. Because this message has been proclaimed for so long, it tells you – “Oh, how much space is left still, for me to really move into action here?” To you and me today, the challenge stands. How committed are we to these messages? Will the earth hear these messages today? If it doesn’t hear these messages properly, is not responding to it, are we going to become blasé because: “Well, they’re not going to listen to it anyway”? Remember what this was, it is to do with our own preparation.

The first angel

Let’s consider the involvement of God’s people. These three angels’ messages contain different facets of truth that must be intensely engaged in. As E.G. White puts it: “an experience in”. Something that I’m actually not only just saying: “This is the truth”, but “this is a living reality in my life”. The first angel’s message was preaching the everlasting gospel. Because it’s the “everlasting gospel”, there are many thoughts which come into focus here. It’s been preached on ever since the beginning, even before the world was created, the everlasting gospel was already in the operation of God’s mind. That has been preached and has been neglected and preached and neglected and preached and neglected through to the point of the coming of Christ, the first coming, the first advent and He was rejected, the beautiful gospel of Christ was right there in front of the people. He was rejected.

Then through the ages ever since this same message of the atonement of Jesus with us, leads to accountability. If Jesus has died for me, am I accountable to do something about it that there is going to be a judgment? The judgment: “because the hour of God’s judgment has come”, and accountability comes into focus other than the first angel’s message preaching the everlasting gospel. We are looking at it now as to our experience in this message.

1 Peter 4:17 For the time [is come] that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if [it] first [begin] at us, what shall the end [be] of them that obey not the gospel of God?

4:18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?

4:19 Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls [to him] in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.

Here is a very frightening message. I’ll never forget the words of my brother older than me who said: “The seventh-day Adventist’s message is the most damning message” until he found the beautiful message of Christ and His righteousness, he said this. Because without Christ and His righteousness, the everlasting gospel, this is a frightening expression “the hour of God’s judgment” is the beginning of the hour of God’s judgment upon God’s people who claim to be His people. If it begins with God’s people, what is it with those who reject it if the righteous scarcely be saved?

That’s a frightening thought. I’m only just going to make it if I do make it. Many people just let their arms hang down and say: “Well, then it leaves me out”.

1 Peter 4:18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear? 19 Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God

What was the suffering? The gospel of Jesus, what was Jesus suffering? To conquer His sinful flesh that He inherited, to conquer that oppression of temptation. He learned obedience by what? By the things that He suffered. People don’t like to hear that message of the everlasting gospel. We must:

1 Peter 4:19 let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls [to him] in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.

We are in need of understanding the everlasting gospel because without the everlasting gospel we will not be saved. The everlasting gospel requires accountability, it requires discipline, it requires getting myself a firm hold upon myself to put away the things that I know are preventing me from having a clear record in heaven. That should not fill you with despair, it should fill you with a challenge to conquer. This is the call of the angel: “Fear God, and give glory to Him”. Give Him the glory! Show the world, by your experience, that you are going to get your life into order! How ordered is your life? How hard is it to order your life according to God’s will? It’s impossible without God. But with God and my determined effort, all things are possible.

I see in our experience, people come to a point where they can’t anymore and they forget the power of God. The lethargy of Lot’s family is very much the experience of people in these last days. They will be destroyed, if they don’t escape for their life. If we go there and we know so well, in Daniel 7:9-10: “The books were opened” in heaven and Jesus came to the Ancient of days and there was the judgment. Jesus, our personal Saviour, is in the presence of the Father during this Day of Judgment, and judgment of the house of God. This is the first angel’s message, the facet of this angel’s message, these serious realities that call for our determination to suffer with Jesus Christ. He suffered being tempted. When you are tempted, when we are tempted, do we suffer? Or do we feel: “Oh it’s nice and comfortable here, I enjoy this temptation, it feels good.” This was the difference between suffering the consequences of the sin verses suffering the temptation to sin that we are to suffer according to the will of God, not according to our consequences of our sins.

Many people become repentant when they suffer the consequences. But we are to be repenting because of the temptation that we don’t want this temptation, I want to live a holy life, I will conquer by God’s grace.

The second angel

Then came the second angel because the people who are not giving God the glory, because of the specific messages that are imparted to them, are to be identified. “Babylon the great is fallen”. Who is Babylon that is to be identified? You know the most unpleasant of the servants of God is to identify those that are fallen. Are you prepared to do it? Or would you rather just hide in the corner not to be an exposer of something? Of a company of people that are wrong, of a system that is faulty. Babylon the great is fallen. Who is she? Who are these identifiable beings, or systems? It says:

Revelations 17:1 And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters:

I will show you! The angel is going to expose to the servants of God.

Revelation 17:2 With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication.

What did he show? What did the angel show him?

Revelation 17:4 And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication: 5 And upon her forehead [was] a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

What? Babylon the mother of harlots. The second angel’s message expressed: Babylon is fallen, the mother and her daughters, because in 1844 you’ve got the Protestant churches. The message was to these Protestant people who rejected the message just as the Jews rejected Jesus Christ and by their rejection they were fallen just like their mother.

Isaiah 29:9 Stay yourselves, and wonder; cry ye out, and cry: they are drunken, but not with wine; they stagger, but not with strong drink. 10 For the LORD hath poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes: the prophets and your rulers, the seers hath he covered. 11 And the vision of all is become unto you as the words of a book that is sealed, which [men] deliver to one that is learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I cannot; for it [is] sealed: 12 And the book is delivered to him that is not learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I am not learned. 13 Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near [me] with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men:

The second angel is to identify this. Who are the angels? The people who proclaim it who are working in harmony with the universe. What are you and I to do in these last moments of earth’s history in the last opportunities we have? We are in tune with the everlasting gospel understanding the hour of God’s judgment as we have seen. We are to identify the systems and those who are preaching human opinion. That’s not an easy work but this is our challenge. We are to stand as a separate people we are not to fraternize with them. But let’s not forget that there are people out there, as we have learned in the Sabbath school lesson, we are not to say: “Stand back, I’m holier than thou” but we are to give the messages of the angels, the angels are saying these things. The angels are warning the world and we are mouth pieces by our expression and by our life and experience having our character developed through the truth experiencing these things, being separate from these terrible Babylonish realities.

The third angel

Then comes the third angel where he is saying: “If any man worship the beast, and the image of the beast, and the mark of the beast”. There is more detail that is identified here that we need to study carefully: What is the beast? What is the image of the beast and what is the mark of the beast? This needs to be clearly understood and removed from, ran away from.

We know very well that the beast is identified in the Bible through the prophecies and it’s connected with Daniel through to Revelation: the Papal power, the Roman Papal power. The image of the beast, fallen apostate Protestantism which was identified under the second angel and the mark of the beast. Not some mark in the forehead that they’re talking about. This is all Satan’s ploy. It is what is in the forehead not on the forehead that counts. What is in your forehead? As God’s people we are to have the name of God in our forehead which means the character of God in our forehead.

But what is the mark of the beast in the forehead? It is that contortion from Sabbath to Sunday that has taken hold and a false keeping of the Sabbath. Not only the day, but not even keeping the Sabbath properly in which you will receive not only the mark of the beast in the forehead, but in the right hand. This detail is all to be carefully understood and studied and practiced, in regards to responding correctly to these angels. And then come this dreadful statement that the wrath of God is going to poured upon them unmingled with mercy under the third angel.

Sister White actually says that the third angel’s message has the most frightening of all the warnings in the Bible. What is in Isaiah 26:20-21? The outpouring of God’s wrath and the call not to receive it under the third angel’s message. This is the experience now:

Isaiah 26:20 Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast. 21 For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.

There is the importance of this angel with this message that he is identifying what this wrath is all about. Study it in Revelation 16 and in Jeremiah 25 and study it to know how you are to relate to the events around you so that you will know how to be protected during those preparations to the great outpouring of God’s wrath. Because as the angels are preaching, God’s wrath is developing. This needs to be clearly understood. We need to identify in this third angel’s message in our experience to not participate with these things but to participate where? What was the third angel’s message in verse 12? Here is what? The patience of the saints. What’s involved? Patience? Are we? An experience in the three angel’s message. A people who are correctly relating to all the events that are crushing spirituality, making sure that we don’t go down with the rest, making sure that with the everlasting gospel I am prepared to suffer and to suffer and to suffer patiently with Jesus.

Look at this in reality. To suffer with each other, I see lots of us are getting tired of suffering with each other. When we were travelling in one car, eight of us in the van, we had to suffer with each other. I don’t like some of the things that are done by another person but I’m to be cheerful and happy not matter what that person is doing, to run along joyfully along that journey of fifty hours in a sardine can. You know what I mean by that. This is a perfect example of getting along in close proximity with one another. Jesus says: “Press together, press together, press together”. Huh? This is getting uncomfortable. This person is a very uncomfortable person.

Here is the patience of the saints

As we are waiting for each other to be perfected, we get impatient with each other and we tell each other a thing or two instead of letting the word of God achieve its end. Here is the patience of the saints and what is the continuation of it? Here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the testimony of Jesus. Not only the testimony, but the faith of Jesus. The faith of Jesus requires patience. This is the cry of the angel. Because there is such a tardiness of people doing this, that as we head to the very last moments which we are heading into right now and we are in right now that we become weary and impatient and we slacken off.

We are to regain the enthusiasm that we gained in the very early stages. As we are to gain the enthusiasm not only of what we had when we first started together, but as what the pioneers had when they first started together. With greater intensity even! We know now more clearly since 1948 as we studied at the camp, it is vividly clear to us that it is not much longer after 1948. There is no more generations to follow. That’s it. Here we are this generation is now, the younger side of the generation is sixty years of age. The very youngest ones are fifty one. It’s not going to pass away. According to words of Jesus, we know exactly where we stand.

The identity of true Christianity

What is particularly important is verse 13;

Revelations 14:13 Blessed [are] the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth

People who have died under the three angels’ messages, we are now looking at many who are now constituting the 144,000, how many are left covering across the world? This is all very important. In Daniel 12:1-3, you know we might know a lot of these Bible texts but how much are they part of our experience? This is this issue.

Daniel 12:1 And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: …

This is when it’s finished. Probation is closed, it will catch people by surprise.

Daniel 12:1 …and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation [even] to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. 2 And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame [and] everlasting contempt. 3 And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.

Here they are this faithful people. I like the way it’s written in Malachi:

Malachi 3:16 Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard [it], and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name. 17 And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts,

We want to identify the faithful. Here they are the people who don’t tire of coming together. You know what we have come into lately, it is because we have got the recordings, we think “well I can stay I don’t have to be at this particular conference, I don’t have to be there. It’s a big tedious job anyway. I may as well stay at home, and receive the message through the actual media. That’s good enough, I’m not missing out”. Yes, you are! We are missing out. What are we missing out on? It says it here, that they shall meet together, in verse 16, that they shall “often” meet together. Remember it says: “Forsaking not the assembling of ourselves”.

As Sister White writes, not only in our regular meetings, but in our camp meetings, that’s where the Spirit of God is going to be poured out. It is by gathering together there, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, that we will make victorious experiences. It says that:

Malachi 3:16 …the LORD hearkened, and heard [it], 17 And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him.

What will He do? He will spare them from the wrath.

Malachi 3:18 Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not.

It’s a discernment, it’s an identification under the three angels’ messages. Then comes in Revelation 14:14 the actual coming of Jesus in the clouds. This is to be proclaimed in the reality of what it means:

The Coming of Jesus

In a time when people have got all sorts of fangled ideas in reference to that. Let us pick up that these multi-facet messages, in fact as you study the three angels’ messages they encompass a study of the entire Scriptures, it is the fulfillment of the entire Scriptures that these people are called upon to proclaim and to understand and experience.

The very message that commenced in 1844 that we are to be part of is in Great Controversy:

The subject of the sanctuary was the key which unlocked the mystery of the disappointment of 1844. It opened to view a complete system of truth, {GC 423.1}

What did I just identify in these seven points of the three angels messages? A complete system of truth which the sanctuary was associated with because the sanctuary message contained the everlasting gospel which contained the hour of God’s judgment. In 1844 Jesus went from the Holy place into the Most Holy place and it was this doctrine under the three angels’ messages that rattled the people.

It opened to view a complete system of truth, {GC 423.1}

I love that system of truth. It’s beautiful when you study it. I’m appalled at those who claim to be under the three angels’ message in reference to their lack of focusing of those beautiful systems of truths and getting distracted by all the human paraphernalia of human problems with each other.

It opened to view a complete system of truth, connected and harmonious, showing that God’s hand had directed the great advent movement and revealing present duty as it brought to light the position and work of His people. {GC 423.1}

This thrills me through and through. I really wish we could get more thrill in the precious appreciation that we have this beautiful system of truth and that we can explore it in our conversation with one another and we can enhance those beautiful things that the pioneers came to understand. But there is so many other things that Satan is throwing into our path that we get distracted by that we can annoyed with each other for. How can we become annoyed with each other when this is the overriding principle running right through our system and our experience in this message?

If we have been faltering, let us spend this year with a new determination to shut out everything else and make a complete commitment to these three angels’ messages not to permit anything to disturb our onward journey. Because what happens when we become dissatisfied with one another? We start pulling in our own little corner and we whimper and murmur about things not being as we think they should be. Our focus is to be this beautiful message.

We can ignore these human deficiencies around us when we are occupied with this. I’m telling this, to be the truth because there’s lot of things that could annoy me. As I said I’m driving a car with a lot of people and there is a lot of things that could annoy me but they won’t and they don’t. I love every moment of it. Not because it’s a pleasant experience but because I’m going on a journey for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. That’s what we are doing. We are on a journey and it’s the last and the last part of the journey is the toughest. When you’ve driven all night and you’ve hardly slept during the day and you drive the next night, and so on and so on. This is the way you become weary and your natural physical nature sighs and that’s what happens in our spiritual experience, no different.

I just love the comparison because it’s exactly the same. I see brothers and sisters beside me many times getting impatient and how do they do it? By complaining about the other person, “I can’t stand it anymore” and “church is the place it should be. I’m not going to go to church anymore.” Something comes in between that Satan makes it possible for us to just become dissatisfied with one another. When it comes to our meetings we start to become a little slacker instead of more intense, gathering more frequently. Huh? It’s all too hard, isn’t it? But no it’s not. Because the joy of being part of this challenge drives me on. I want you to look at it and the joy of salvation that pulsates in my own being, that we can encourage one another. No matter what’s going on around us, matters not! Nothing matters. Everything that matters is our involvement in these messages. That’s everything that matters. It matters to do with the everlasting gospel.

It matters to do with me being accountable. It matters to do with me standing separate from the world and its Babylonish ways. It means embracing the beautiful protection that the angels are calling me to come out, to shut the doors about me, to hide myself. What a joy! The Lord is passing upon us, so we can avoid the drama of its final destruction. To be among the people of God, that God says: “These are my jewels!” The Majesty of the universe wants me to be His jewel. He wants to gather me. Am I going to say I can’t anymore, I can’t be in this casket anymore”? Remember the church is the casket. The gems are rubbing up against each other. That’s good. The flesh needs to be broken away and all of what is to be left is the jewel.

Does it dawn upon us that we have a vast field of truth and practice laid out before us under these three angels’ message? Does it dawn upon us that we are to embrace this not only in theory as it has been held now for so many years in the Adventists circles, but that we are to continue in the living aspects of it?

The commission given to the disciples is given also to us. Today, as then, a crucified and risen Saviour is to be uplifted before those who are without God and without hope in the world. The Lord calls for pastors, teachers, and evangelists. {GW 29.1}

Young people say well, that doesn’t mean me. Yes it does, remember it’s not the theologians, it’s God’s people.

From door to door His servants are to proclaim the message of salvation. To every nation, kindred, tongue, and people the tidings of pardon through Christ are to be carried. Not with tame, lifeless utterances is the message to be given, but with clear, decided, stirring utterances. {GW 29.1}

Remember your words are to be reinforced by our actions because our actions are to speak louder than our words.

He who beholds the Saviour’s matchless love will be elevated in thought, purified in heart, transformed in character. {GW 29.2}

I charge thee therefore ,” Paul wrote to Timothy, “before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long-suffering and doctrine. [2 Timothy 4:1, 2.] {GW 30.1}

This is what the ministers are to do. But we are to do it by our actions if we are not ministers. We are ministers in one way or another.

This solemn charge to one so zealous and faithful as was Timothy, is a strong testimony to the importance and responsibility of the work of the gospel minister. Summoning Timothy before the bar of God, Paul bids him preach the word, not the sayings and customs of men; {GW 30.2}

That’s what we read in Isaiah.

to be ready to witness for God whenever opportunity should present itself,—before large congregations and private circles, by the way and at the fireside, to friends and to enemies, whether in safety or exposed to hardship and peril, reproach and loss. {GW 30.2}

Fearing that Timothy’s mild, yielding disposition might lead him to shun an essential part of his work, Paul exhorted him to be faithful in reproving sin, and even to rebuke with sharpness those who were guilty of gross evils. {GW 30.3}

This is an important point. We have a timid nature don’t we? Apostle Paul was fearing in his timid nature he might fail. With the energy that is to come from these three angels’ messages, we must grit our teeth against our natural tendencies.

My natural tendencies are my natural feelings. When it doesn’t feel good, when you feel down, ignore it! Ignore it. Your feelings don’t have anything to do with your progress and spiritual fervor, nothing whatsoever. How many times I have had to battle through negative feelings, just to not even countenance them but I noticed that people talked to me about the way they feel about things. Then they show me by their behavior that they are actually succumbing to feelings. So what if I don’t feel well? So what if I feel miserable? It matters nothing! Here is this beautiful message! Here is this beautiful life, to be engaged in. What I have learnt is that my health comes about by ignoring my feelings. I’ve shared these experiences before where the heart starts playing up, when it skips a few beats, if I pay attention to it, it actually gets me down. A fear comes into my mind. I’ve had that funny feeling in my chest, like a fish flopping around inside, that’s what it feels like. They call it flounder. To ignore it and to look to the Lord and to rejoice brings it back into order again. How many times that has happened?

How many times I have preached here in the pulpit and something goes wrong because of the weariness and so on and I get giddy, a dizzy spell and I just rejoice and I preach more powerfully and it goes. Because I rest in the Lord for my support, I don’t turn to my feelings: “Huh, I can’t anymore.” Nothing like that. Even though I feel like doing it sometimes, and this is the way the Lord wants us to conquer our feelings, so that we can powerfully journey on. At the camp, they wanted to take a photo of everybody looking serious. You know, I don’t like that picture at all. I don’t think it’s a good picture. That’s why I said, as everybody was just about ready to get the photo taken, I said: “We are weary, faint and sore, oh so weary, faint and sore”. And everybody broke out laughing, and I spoiled the picture. It’s exactly what I wanted to do. What a stupid picture to put up on the internet. God’s people are to be rejoicing people. They are to be sad-looking, somber and serious so that they don’t communicate the joy of the Lord in this beautiful message. We are to uplift the power of God in the world. And how are we to uplift it? By the words we proclaim, and by the life experience that we engage in.

Let nothing get you down, nothing. I say this with great fervency, because this is the way the pioneers managed. They battled through the most horrible circumstances. Brother White was a perfect example. He ended up with a broken system because he was so pushing on, and he had then to recover himself again, and strengthen himself to rejoice in the Lord, because he was doing, he was getting run down because of the negativities in the church. I learned from that. I watched him closely. Don’t let the negativities rob you of your strength! Rejoice in the power of God! You will ride over the top of these negativities, and you will stay healthy both in mind and in body. Sister White wrote about him that he died a premature death because he learned that lesson slowly.

God’s people are written of and I want to conclude where we read this beautiful account of being the upholders of these three angels’ messages as they were in the past.

In the proclamation of the messages, {2SM 387.3}

What messages? She’s talking about the three angels.

every specification of prophecy has been fulfilled. {2SM 387.3}

“Every specification”. It’s already all fulfilled. Jesus could have come a long time ago.

Those who were privileged to act a part in proclaiming these messages have gained an experience which is of the highest value to them; and now when we are amid the perils of these last days, when voices will be heard on every side saying, “Here is Christ,” “Here is truth,” while the burden of many is to unsettle the foundation of our faith which has led us from the churches and from the world to stand as a peculiar people in the world, like John our testimony will be borne: {2SM 387.3}

That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; … that which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us” (1 John 1:1-3). {2SM 388.1}

I testify the things which I have seen, the things which I have heard, the things which my hands have handled of the Word of life. And this testimony I know to be of the Father and the Son. We have seen and do testify that the power of the Holy Ghost has accompanied the presentation of the truth (this has been the case in the past), warning with pen and voice, and giving the messages in their order. To deny this work would be to deny the Holy Ghost, and would place us in that company who have departed from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits. {2SM 388.2}

How successful have these seducing spirits been? We have tried to hold together but have they not tried to get us down too? The Adventists circles and the independents are saying: “Here is God. Here is Christ.” But what have they done? They have undermined the very truths that have been firmly established by our forefathers.

Many will honestly search the Word for Light as those in the past have searched it; and they see light in the Word. But they did not pass over the ground in their experience, when these messages of warning were first proclaimed. Not having had this experience, some do not appreciate the value of the truths that have been to us as waymarks, and that have made us as a peculiar people what we are. {2SM 110.4}

The people now have a special message to give to the world, the third angel’s message. Those who, in their experience, have passed over the ground, and acted a part in the proclamation of the first, second, and third angels’ messages, are not so liable to be led into false paths as are those who have not had an experimental knowledge of the people of God…. {2SM 102.1}

Who are we to trust? Those who have made an experience in the development of these angels’ message.

There have been one and another who in studying their Bibles thought they discovered great light, and new theories, but these have not been correct. The Scripture is all true, but by misapplying the Scripture men arrive at wrong conclusions. We are engaged in a mighty conflict, and it will become more close and determined, as we near the final struggle. {2SM 102.2}

What was that? It’s easy to read, isn’t it? What was that? This conflict “will become more close”, more “determined”, as we near the final struggle”. Where are we today brethren? We’re not nearing the final struggle, we’re right in it. Have you felt it? If you want to uphold the hold truths of Adventism, you are in the brewing pot. I am.

We have a sleepless adversary, and he is constantly at work upon human minds that have not had a personal experience in the teachings of the people of God for the past fifty years. {2SM 102.2}

If you want that experience take their word and make it your own and enter it and then you will be proclaiming with them.

This is our challenge, brethren and sisters. I want to start this New Year with a clear determination stirred up in our mind that we will not become weary. The cry of that song: “We are weary, faint and sore.” Don’t respond to it! I’m not weary, faint and sore. I will not express it. I feel it sometimes but I will not express it and I will not winge and murmur along the way. Will you join me? Shall we make it a firm decision that no matter what goes wrong around us, we will remain loyal and faithful and we will push this message and we will press together no matter what.

May God help us to do this.

Amen.

Posted on October 29, 2012, in Divine Service Sermons, Sermons by John Thiel and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

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