11 The Swelling of Jacob’s Trouble

By John Thiel, Facing Last Days Perils Conference, mp3

Many people think that Jacob’s trouble is just bang, there it is. Is it true that Jacob’s trouble is something that swells into greater and more intense activity? This is what we want to examine.

In the 1840s onwards, perplexities began to threaten. In 1848 a world war was threatening but then it just suddenly stopped. From that time as we look back through the history, we got to the time of 1914 and there was the First World War and all the horrendous experiences that were involved there. But they were even small in comparison to the Second World War and to the terrible time of the depression that happened in between. Then it moved on to a time in which there was the cold war with men’s hearts failing them for fear of the things that were coming on the planet. Now we are seeing them gathering more and more momentum.

In Sister White’s time already, in the early 1900s, this is what we read in reference to the time of trial:

In this time of trial we need to be encouraged and comforted by one another. The temptations of Satan are greater now than ever before, for he knows that his time is short and that very soon every case will be decided, either for life or for death. It is no time now to sink down beneath discouragement and trial; we must bear up under all our afflictions and trust wholly in the Almighty God of Jacob. The Lord has shown me that His grace is sufficient for all our trials; and although they are greater than ever before, yet if we trust wholly in God, we can overcome every temptation and through His grace come off victorious. {EW 46.1}

When that was written, it was already worse than ever before. If that back there, was worse than ever before, how much worse is it for us today? This never ceases to cause me to smile to myself because people have become so used to the perplexities of these last days and the contrast with the peace that used to exist in the old days beyond the turn of the last century, is just so enormous. As time moved on from then, the ever deepening perplexities continued to this time.

The lessons for the present time are for all to understand, but they are very feebly appreciated. There should be greater thoroughness in labor; and more vigilant waiting, more vigilant watching and praying, and more vigilant working, in prospect of the events now taking place, and which are swelling to large importance as we near the close of this earth’s history. The human agent is to reach for perfection, to be an ideal Christian, complete in Jesus Christ. {RC 271.4}

The people in her time were not appreciating the seriousness of things, and you notice that it said: the events now taking place, and which are swelling to large importance. If they’ve been swelling over the decades and over the century, where are all these events now? As we look back at the history of people who were meant to be standing faithful Christians, we see that as these things were swelling a lot of them were already faltering. We remember it in the First World War; the great majority of Christians went to war. Was that what Christ told them to do? Jesus said very plainly, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight. But because it is not from thence therefore my servants do no fight. Christians should never go to war according to those words of Jesus. But did they? That’s what many atheists say, Christianity, or religion and politics is the unmaking of this world. It’s over religious subjects that people are fighting. You see it today, the muslims call it the holy war and the Christians engage with holy war. Well if they wouldn’t fight, what would the people be able to fight? As you look at the history when God stood for His people, the warlike nations didn’t succeed. Jesus made it very plain that to be a Christian was not to go to war, but they fell as the terrible swelling perplexities continued, and anybody that would be faithful was thrown into extreme perplexities.

Many have faltered and not passed the test. Where and how are people in position today? The language here is very demonstrative of this failing:

Jeremiah 12:5 If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? and [if] in the land of peace, [wherein] thou trustedst, [they wearied thee], then how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan?

When the Jordan river swells into a flood, how can you survive if you haven’t even survived in the peaceful situations? If the footmen were running and you couldn’t keep up with them, how could you keep up with the horses? This is the description of how the terrible storms of perplexity were increasing and people were failing. They couldn’t keep up with the horses let alone with the footmen.

The time of trouble is before us, and if there is lack of courage and ambition now, how will they pass the fearful scenes of that trying hour? {15MR 331.1}

We see here the same language. If you can’t keep up with the footmen, how can you keep up with the horses or the swelling of the Jordan if you can’t even be faithful when things are much easier? We are very familiar with the messages of the three angels and we remember how the third angel’s message is to swell into a loud cry. The language of swelling is applied to the message of the third angel swelling until it becomes a very powerful message to the world. And as the message of the third angel swells, what is in connection with the swelling of his message? What do the people do as the loud cry is swelling into a notable impact upon the world? How does the world react to the powerful message that is increasing in power?

But since many refuse to be satisfied with the mere authority of men and demand a plain “Thus saith the Lord,” the popular ministry, like the Pharisees of old, filled with anger as their authority is questioned, will denounce the message as of Satan and stir up the sin-loving multitudes to revile and persecute those who proclaim it. {GC 606.2}

As the message of the third angel goes on in power, the people who reject that, the ministers of the churches become filled with anger and turn the world against those people that are powerfully increasing that message.

As the controversy extends into new fields and the minds of the people are called to God’s downtrodden law, Satan is astir. The power attending the message will only madden those who oppose it. {GC 607.1}

Can you see the picture? The swelling of the message will madden the people against the message. As the swelling of the message takes place, the conflict swells and gets worse.

The clergy will put forth almost superhuman efforts to shut away the light lest it should shine upon their flocks. By every means at their command they will endeavor to suppress the discussion of these vital questions. The church appeals to the strong arm of civil power, and, in this work, papists and Protestants unite. As the movement for Sunday enforcement becomes more bold and decided, the law will be invoked against commandment keepers. They will be threatened with fines and imprisonment, and some will be offered positions of influence, and other rewards and advantages, as inducements to renounce their faith. But their steadfast answer is: “Show us from the word of God our error.” {GC 607.1}

Thus light will be brought before thousands because they have to stand in defence of their faith in the courts. The progress of the loud cry begins to stir more and more as it proceeds into news fields, and this is a period of time in which ever since the third angel’s message was first proclaimed it stirs, and stirs and stirs. It swells and swells, and the more it swells the more it stirs and the more opposition arises, until it culminates in courts and in imprisonment, etc.

As the storm approaches, {GC 608.2}

It is a storm that comes on. We had a hailstorm a few days ago. It started with a few hits here and there, bang, bang, bang. Then it got a little bit more, and a little bit more, slowly it increased, until finally down came the whole bucket full of hail. This is exactly the same sort of picture. It approaches and gets stronger and stronger, that is what we are looking at: the swelling of the storm. What happens?

…a large class who have professed faith in the third angel’s message, but have not been sanctified through obedience to the truth, abandon their position and join the ranks of the opposition. {GC 608.2}

As this swelling is taking place, for a large class of those who are supposed to be preaching the third angel’s message, it doesn’t increase in their enthusiasm and they fall off and it leaves these tiny little companies.

By uniting with the world and partaking of its spirit, they have come to view matters in nearly the same light; and when the test is brought, they are prepared to choose the easy, popular side. Men of talent and pleasing address, {GC 608.2}

You like listening to people who can preach well don’t you? These are men who can preach well, of pleasing address.

Men of talent and pleasing address, who once rejoiced in the truth, employ their powers to deceive and mislead souls. They become the most bitter enemies of their former brethren. When Sabbathkeepers are brought before the courts to answer for their faith, {GC 608.2}

That is the last and final part of the message.

When Sabbathkeepers are brought before the courts to answer for their faith, these apostates are the most efficient agents of Satan to misrepresent and accuse them, and by false reports and insinuations to stir up the rulers against them. {GC 608.2}

This is exactly what happened in the First World War and in the Second World War. It’s exactly what happened. We know the stories from the reformers. Their former brethren put them into the government, especially at the time of the Communist world. The faithful preachers of the three angels were opposed by their former brethren, exactly as it reads. This is why I am saying that this chapter 38 of Great Controversy has already been taking place in the past, because that is exactly what happened.

As the opposition rises to a fiercer height, the servants of God are again perplexed; for it seems to them that they have brought the crisis. {GC 610.1}

If they would have just submitted to the authorities, it wouldn’t have been a crisis, so they think, we were the ones that first stirred the trouble, and our own brethren are turning us into the government, have we done the right thing?

But conscience and the word of God assure them that their course is right; and although the trials continue, they are strengthened to bear them. The contest grows closer and sharper, but their faith and courage rise with the emergency. Their testimony is: “We dare not tamper with God’s word, dividing His holy law; calling one portion essential and another nonessential, to gain the favor of the world. {GC 610.1}

The people are saying, certain things of the Bible are important and the other ones are not important. The Old Testament is not important, only the new one. That is what they dared not submit to, calling one portion essential and another nonessential.

The Lord whom we serve is able to deliver us. Christ has conquered the powers of earth; and shall we be afraid of a world already conquered?” {GC 610.1}

These people are stubborn. They keep on pushing forward and the intensity of resistance gets stronger. You have people reasoning like this, why don’t you just compromise a little bit? Why do you want to stir these people? Just compromise. Then you might have peace. But no, the intensity gets stronger and stronger as we stand firm and as the laws are levelled against us. As the storm approaches, as opposition arises and rises more, the contest grows closer and closer. Hence the subject, the swelling of Jacob’s trouble, because Jacob’s trouble is something to do with this.

When finally it is full blown and it has reached its culmination, here is what takes place:

As the Sabbath has become the special point of controversy throughout Christendom, and religious and secular authorities have combined to enforce the observance of the Sunday, the persistent refusal of a small minority to yield to the popular demand will make them objects of universal execration. {GC 615.2}

A small minority insisting to stand loyal will make them the brunt of the world’s opposition, universal execration.

It will be urged that the few who stand in opposition to an institution of the church and a law of the state ought not to be tolerated; that it is better for them to suffer than for whole nations to be thrown into confusion and lawlessness. The same argument many centuries ago was brought against Christ by the “rulers of the people.” “It is expedient for us,” said the wily Caiaphas, “that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.” John 11:50. This argument will appear conclusive; and a decree will finally be issued against those who hallow the Sabbath of the fourth commandment, denouncing them as deserving of the severest punishment and giving the people liberty, after a certain time, to put them to death. Romanism in the Old World and apostate Protestantism in the New will pursue a similar course toward those who honor all the divine precepts. {GC 615.2}

The people of God will then be plunged into those scenes of affliction and distress described by the prophet as the time of Jacob’s trouble. {GC 616.1}

The intensity increases until finally you have the full blown Jacob’s trouble which is directly related to the precursor. Everything that happened beforehand is related the time of Jacob’s trouble. The reference to Jacob’s trouble is brought into focus in the Bible:

Jeremiah 30:5 For thus saith the LORD; We have heard a voice of trembling, of fear, and not of peace. 6 Ask ye now, and see whether a man doth travail with child?

That’s a joke. Isn’t the Bible interesting? It has a sense of humour. Have you ever seen a man that travails with birth giving? Well that’s what it’s going to be like.

Jeremiah 30:6 … wherefore do I see every man with his hands on his loins, as a woman in travail, and all faces are turned into paleness? 7 Alas! for that day [is] great, so that none [is] like it: it [is] even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it.

Jacob’s trouble which is referred to here is that every man will go through this anguish that is equal to a woman in travail. What happened to Jacob? Here is the trouble that Jacob went through and the people of God will go through that in the swelling of the last days’ persecution because of the messages that were being given. Jacob was there traveling back home towards Esau after many years of being separated from Esau because he had stolen his birthright and Esau was coming along with his four hundred men.

Genesis 32:24 And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day. 25 And when he saw that he prevailed not against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with him.

When that happened Jacob suddenly realised, oh, this is a supernatural intervention, who am I fighting?

Genesis 32:26 And [the angel] said, Let me go, for the day breaketh. And [Jacob] said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me. 27 And he said unto him, What [is] thy name? And he said, Jacob. 28 And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed. 29 And Jacob asked [him], and said, Tell [me], I pray thee, thy name. And he said, Wherefore [is] it [that] thou dost ask after my name? And he blessed him there. 30 And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.

This is the description of Jacob’s trouble and for the people who are coming to the end it develops into a crescendo of conflict that culminates into the grand finale; and we have just read of that grand finale here.

When in his distress Jacob laid hold of the Angel, and made supplication with tears, the heavenly Messenger, in order to try his faith, also reminded him of his sin, and endeavored to escape from him. But Jacob would not be turned away. He had learned that God is merciful, and he cast himself upon His mercy. He pointed back to his repentance for his sin, and pleaded for deliverance. As he reviewed his life, he was driven almost to despair; but he held fast the Angel, and with earnest, agonizing cries urged his petition until he prevailed. {CC 68.4}

What is it like in your experience when you’ve been trying to do the right thing and you failed and you feel all condemned and like, oh, I’m never going to make it. That’s how Jacob felt, but he said, no, I know God will help me. I’m going to hold on to Him. I’m not going to run away. I’m going to stay and I’m going to remain totally attached to my God. The angel was trying to push him away but no, I will not let you go. This must be our experience. Because the crisis is our fault in the eyes of the world and we are being affected by Satan in this last time but we mustn’t let go.

Such will be the experience of God’s people in their final struggle with the powers of evil. God will test their faith, their perseverance, their confidence in His power to deliver them. {CC 68.5}

He will test them through those trials.

Satan will endeavor to terrify them with the thought that their cases are hopeless; that their sins have been too great to receive pardon. They will have a deep sense of their shortcomings, and as they review their lives their hopes will sink. But remembering the greatness of God’s mercy, and their own sincere repentance, they will plead His promises made through Christ to helpless, repenting sinners. Their faith will not fail because their prayers are not immediately answered. They will lay hold of the strength of God, as Jacob laid hold of the Angel, and the language of their souls will be, “I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.” {CC 68.5}

The time of Jacob’s trouble. It increased unto a final crescendo. Horrendous is the experience for God’s people when it finally strikes and it ends. If it’s already bad now, how can we survive then if we can’t survive now? If many people at the moment say, no, that’s it, it’s too much and they falter in their stand for the truth, what can we read about that?

The assaults of Satan are fierce and determined, his delusions are terrible; but the Lord’s eye is upon His people, and His ear listens to their cries. Their affliction is great, the flames of the furnace seem about to consume them; {GC 621.1}

What does that remind you of? Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego? They could feel the heat when they stood faithful and they were thrown into the fire and it looked like it was going to consume them. So it is with God’s people. It’s horrendous.

…but the Refiner will bring them forth as gold tried in the fire. God’s love for His children during the period of their severest trial is as strong and tender as in the days of their sunniest prosperity; but it is needful for them to be placed in the furnace of fire; their earthliness must be consumed, that the image of Christ may be perfectly reflected. {GC 621.1}

If we can’t keep up with the footmen, how can we stand then? If we can’t live in the land of plenty and safety, how will it be when the swelling of the Jordan takes place? To survive at the climax of the experience, we must deal correctly with the preliminaries. Isn’t it obvious? If I can’t manage the preliminaries, how can I deal with the climax which is connected? The same thing that happened all along the way only becomes worse. We’ve got the history of the First and Second World War to demonstrate that. Now we are at the time when men’s hearts are failing them for fear and the faithful ones stiffly standing for the truth are less and less and less. Then comes the grand finale. That grand finale does not hit abruptly. It is like a strangling experience, at first you can breathe a little bit, and then you can only breathe less and less and less until finally you’re choked.

We are in need of preparing for this time of trouble.

The season of distress and anguish before us will require a faith that can endure weariness, delay, and hunger–a faith that will not faint though severely tried. The period of probation is granted to all to prepare for that time. {GC 621.2}

That period of probation is a period of intensifying problems.

Jacob prevailed because he was persevering and determined. His victory is an evidence of the power of importunate prayer. All who will lay hold of God’s promises, as he did, and be as earnest and persevering as he was, will succeed as he succeeded. Those who are unwilling to deny self, to agonize before God, to pray long and earnestly for His blessing, will not obtain it. Wrestling with God–how few know what it is! {GC 621.2}

Do you ever wrestle with God? It says that few know what it is to wrestle with God in such a way that He will finally say okay, it’s enough now let me go and we will not let go.

How few have ever had their souls drawn out after God with intensity of desire until every power is on the stretch. {GC 621.2}

What is this saying? We pray a while and then we say, now I’ve got to get to some work and yes we do have to work but we forget about the intensity. Then maybe in the evening we’ll come back and have a prayer and so it goes on. But this is not the intensity that is needed when you are trying to get over the sins that are so heavy upon us at this time.

When waves of despair which no language can express sweep over the suppliant, how few cling with unyielding faith to the promises of God. {GC 621.2}

In the battle of your own personal life, you sometimes become totally overwhelmed with despair which no one can really know. How few cling. They look for some distractions so that they can feel better instead of clinging to the one who alone can give us peace and restoration.
How does God prepare us for that time? How does He prepare us so at that time we can stand? What is written in Revelation 7:1-3? When the wind is about to burst and the angels are holding back the winds of earth, what does the angel say to those four angels? Hold, hold until we have sealed the servants of God in their foreheads. What is involved in the sealing? It is to protect the people for the storm so that when it finally blows fully they will be protected. What were the angels doing?

Here the question was asked, who are these people that were dressed in white and were being sealed?

Revelation 7:14 And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

They were going through a period in which their character which is the robe was made pure. In the story of the ten virgins, only the five wise had that character. They washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. What is that in reality, in living activity?

The apostle was speaking to the Jews and telling them what is meant to happen:

Acts 3:19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; 20 And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: 21 Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.

To have your robe washed white in the blood of the Lamb means to be fully restored, the restitution of all things. How far are we to be restored? What degree of restitution are we to come to? Is it just to be recovered from certain things here on earth? It means to be restored exactly to the position that we were before man ever fell. The restitution of all things, including personal righteousness. What is written that God will do for His people in this sealing time?

Jude 24 Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present [you] faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,

What restitution is He going to perform? All things including to perfection, faultless. This is what He is intending to do. He does it through the washing in the blood of the Lamb because there is going to be the people that are sealed and who have washed their robes. When they are fully sealed, what is written about them? This is describing the 144,000:

Revelation 14:4 These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, [being] the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. 5 And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.

This is what is required to be able to survive through the time of Jacob’s trouble.

Now, while our great High Priest is making the atonement for us, we should seek to become perfect in Christ. {GC 623.1}

That is what has got to happen as a preliminary.

Not even by a thought could our Saviour be brought to yield to the power of temptation. Satan finds in human hearts some point where he can gain a foothold; some sinful desire is cherished, by means of which his temptations assert their power. But Christ declared of Himself: “The prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in Me.” John 14:30. Satan could find nothing in the Son of God that would enable him to gain the victory. He had kept His Father’s commandments, and there was no sin in Him that Satan could use to his advantage. This is the condition in which those must be found who shall stand in the time of trouble. {GC 623.1}

If we are going to stand in the time of Jacob’s trouble, what condition must we be found in? The same as Jesus was so that when Satan comes along to get something out of us that is sinful there is no response. That is the restitution of character, to be like Jesus. What is the process that brings us to such a position? The preliminaries to the finale. Because in Malachi it says that He will purify His people like silver and gold in the furnace, in the furnace of trial. That was what Jesus went through Himself (Hebrews 5:7-9). He came down and was made perfect by the things which He suffered. Why was Jesus not responding? Because He was made perfect; and we are to be in the same process. That is why we are to look to Jesus. As Jesus had to learn, so are we to learn and we are to become faultless as He was so that there is no response to Satan anymore. This is to do with the preliminaries that lead us to the grand finale.

Hebrews 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset [us], and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, 2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds. 4 Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.

What are the 144,000 going to do? They will wash their robes in the blood of the Lamb. They will resist unto blood.

Hebrews 12:5 And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: 6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. 7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? 8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons. 9 Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected [us], and we gave [them] reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? 10 For they verily for a few days chastened [us] after their own pleasure; but he for [our] profit, that [we] might be partakers of his holiness.

Not our holiness, His holiness. That’s a dimension too big for us, but God wants us to follow Christ’s example so that He will take us through the furnace of fire, He will take us through until it gets hotter and hotter, like for Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, when it was heated up seven times; all this is symbolic for our times. We have to stand among the crowd that is bowing before the image and it’s going to get hotter and hotter, and we have to stand faithful no matter what.

Psalm 119:67 Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept thy word.

We go astray, don’t we? Then we become afflicted; and when we become afflicted we suddenly realise, oh, no, I know what I’ve done; so the Lord takes us through affliction, through furnace, until finally He has got us there.

This process is very systematically and practically laid out for us in the Testimony of Jesus.

God has shown me that He gave His people a bitter cup to drink, to purify and cleanse them. It is a bitter draught, and they can make it still more bitter by murmuring, complaining, and repining. But those who receive it thus must have another draught, for the first does not have its designed effect upon the heart. And if the second does not effect the work, then they must have another, and another, until it does have its designed effect, {EW 47.1}

That’s the purging of the fire until it finally does its work.

I saw that this bitter cup can be sweetened by patience, endurance, and prayer, {EW 47.1}

Go through with it. It can be sweetened. It doesn’t have to be so excruciating that you can’t survive. You can sweeten it. God reveals to us step by step all our sins. (See Testimonies for the Church Vol.1 187.1) He shows us what we’re doing wrong and then He waits for us to correct it; then, when we’ve corrected that He shows us the next one; then, when you’ve corrected that, He shows us the next one and you think, where is this going to stop? It keeps on going until we have been purified, washed in the blood of the Lamb.

This is the swelling of Jacob’s trouble.

Their affliction is great, the flames of the furnace seem about to consume them; but the Refiner will bring them forth as gold tried in the fire. God’s love for His children during the period of their severest trial is as strong and tender as in the days of their sunniest prosperity; but it is needful for them to be placed in the furnace of fire; {GC 621.1}

What must be removed?

…their earthliness must be consumed, that the image of Christ may be perfectly reflected. {GC 621.1}

As it swells because they are preaching the pure truth, they get bombarded and opposed, and as they get opposed they are going through excruciating sin discoverings of their own, it’s all in the package deal. A lot of people always separate the precious experience of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit from this experience but it’s all synonymous. It goes together. The loud cry goes together with this. But a lot of people don’t seem to realise that. They think they’re living in a heaven of joy that we are going to give the loud cry, then, meanwhile they don’t realise that they’re actually going to miss out because they’re not even aware that they’re supposed to be going through this part as well.

This is what I’m finding. People are reading the Scriptures and the Spirit of prophecy with a sort of a fairy tale religion. We are talking about realities that are going synonymously with each other. The loud cry intensifies, the persecution intensifies and the purging of our sins from ourselves during the heating up of the furnace gets more and more. Sin is removed until at the climax that little bit that is still left, the earthliness, is removed in the time of Jacob’s trouble. This is the reality which we must understand if we are going to survive.

This is what Job said.

Job 23:10 But he knoweth the way that I take: [when] he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.

Who will come forth and when will he come forth as gold? During the time of Jacob’s trouble. The trial of it intensifies until that climax. Here is the connection between now and then:

The path to freedom from sin is through crucifixion of self, and conflict with the powers of darkness. Let none be discouraged in view of the severe trials to be met in the time of Jacob’s trouble, which is yet before them. {OHC 321.2}

That was written in her time.

They are to work earnestly, anxiously, not for that time, but for today. {OHC 321.2}

That time comes but we must work anxiously to achieve what we do today.

What we want is to have a knowledge of the truth as it is in Christ now, and a personal experience now. In these precious closing hours of probation, we have a deep and living experience to gain. We shall thus form characters that will ensure our deliverance in the time of trouble. {OHC 321.2}

If we read this statement on his own without the exploration of this study, it is just lovely words, but when you see it in its connection you suddenly go, oh. What I’ve imagined in my mind is not quite the way the reality is. From the time of the heralds that announced the future, when they went through the fifty years of preparation, then they came to 1888 and the onslaught; and it has continued ever since that time.

But there is the note of comfort. As this intensifying madness is experienced while we are receiving the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and we are giving the loud cry and the intensity gets worse and worse as well as the consequences, we think, it’s too much. But because we are studying this we can see that this is exactly what is meant to be. Unless we study that, we will be all distracted and we will think, this is hopeless, it’s never been so bad before, why are we going through all this? This is going to be uttered again and again and again. Every time we get a closer test, it gets more severe.
Jeremiah 30:7 …it [is] even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it.

This intense madness that only intensifies more and more is not there to consume us; it is only to consume our sins, our dross and our earthliness. We will be saved out of it, but it’s up to us whether we’re going to stick with it because we must do what Jacob did, I will not let go.

Do we know that we are on the right path at the moment? Have you been tossed? We must continue. We must not stop, because if we do, we have no assurance of victory at the end. Go through, although we are already in the closing perplexities, courage in the Lord, we shall be saved out of it.

Amen.

Posted on April 7, 2014, in Facing Last Day Perils and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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