The reason why so many are in perplexity is because they
take their cases into their own hands, and manufacture yokes that are not
pleasant for them to wear. They worry and plan and devise, when Christ stands
inviting, "Take my yoke."
If you have not
found the rest that Christ has offered to give you upon condition that you
learn of him who is meek and lowly of heart, would you not better without delay
yoke up with Christ, bear only his burdens, and not pile upon your shoulders
burdens that weigh you down to the earth? All your trouble comes because you
are so anxious to run things yourself that you do not wear the yoke of Christ,
which he declares is easy. The yokes of your own manufacturing gall the neck
that wears them. Christ says, Try my yoke, it is easy; lift my burdens, for
they are light.
Christ gives rest
to all who receive him by faith. You are not to conjure up a variety of things
that you are to enter into in order to find rest, assurance, confidence. Just
leave that work, which not even the wisest of the human family can do, and put
your trust in One who has promised rest to your soul. Do just what he has told
you to do, and be assured that God will do all that he has engaged to do. The
invitation is, Come unto me, and I will give you rest. Have you come to him,
renouncing all your makeshifts, all your unbelief, all your self-righteousness?
Come just as you are, weak, helpless, ready to die.
What is the
"rest"? It is the consciousness that God is true, that he never
disappoints a soul who comes to him. His pardon is full and free, and his
acceptance of you means rest to your soul, rest in his love.
But be sure that
you act your part by cooperating with the One who has promised. By some the
promise is grasped so eagerly that it becomes their own, and peace and joy in
the Holy Ghost is their experience. Others suppose that they must wait to
become worthy. Never, never will you become worthy, for if this could have
been, the Prince of heaven would never have come to our world.
your own salvation with fear and trembling." How is this done? Fear lest
you shall weave into the fabric threads of your own selfishness; fear lest you
shall err in choosing the timber for your character-building. God alone can
supply the solid timber. Well may mortal man be afraid of weaving into his
character the miserable threads of his own inherited and cultivated tendencies;
well may he tremble lest he shall not submit all things to Him who is working
in his behalf, that God's will may be done in him. God welcomes those who come
to him just as they are, not building themselves up in self-righteousness, not
seeking to justify self, not claiming merit for that which they call a good
action, not priding themselves on their knowledge of what constitutes
righteousness. Put on the wedding garment which Christ has prepared, and drop
the citizen's dress; then you can sit down in heavenly places with Christ.
While you have
been walking in meekness and lowliness, a work has been going on for you, a
work which only God could do, for it is God that worketh in you both to will
and to do of his good pleasure. And that good pleasure is to have you abide in
Christ; rest in his love. You must not let anything rob your soul of peace, of
restfulness, of the assurance that you are accepted just now. Appropriate every
promise; all are yours on condition of your complying with the Lord's terms.
Entire surrender of your ways, which seem so very wise, and taking Christ's
ways, is the secret of perfect rest in his love. Giving up the life to him
means much more than we suppose. We must learn his meekness and lowliness
before we can realize the fulfillment of the promise, "Ye shall find rest
unto your souls." It is by learning the habits of Christ that self becomes
transformed,--by taking Christ's yoke and then submitting to learn. There is no
one who has not much to learn. All must come under the training of Jesus. When
they fall upon Christ, their own hereditary and cultivated tendencies are taken
away as hindrances to their being partakers of the divine nature. When self
dies, Christ lives in the human agent; the man abides in Christ, and Christ
lives in him.
all to become his students. He says, Yield yourself to my training; submit your
soul to me. I will not extinguish you, but will work out for you such a
character that you shall be transformed from the lower to the higher grade.
Submit all things to me. Let my life, my patience, my longsuffering, my
forbearance, my meekness, my lowliness, be worked out in your character, as one
that abides in me and I in him. Then you have power. Christ says not only,
"I will give," but, "You shall find rest to your
God calls for an
entire surrender. You can not receive the Holy Spirit until you break every
yoke of bondage, everything that binds you to your objectionable traits of
character. These are the great hindrances to your wearing Christ's yoke and
learning of him. The abiding rest--who has it? That rest is found when all
self-justification, all reasoning from a selfish standpoint, is put away.
Acquaintance with Christ makes you want to abide in him, and to have him abide
in you. Entire self-surrender is required.
In my dream last
night a sentinel stood at the door of an important building, and said to every
one who came for entrance, Have you received the Holy Ghost? A measuring line
was in his hand, and only very, very few were admitted into the building. Your
size as a human being is nothing; your size as the full stature of a man in
Christ Jesus, according to the knowledge you have had, will give you an
appointment to sit with Christ at the marriage supper of the Lamb, and you will
never know the extent of the great advantages given you in the banquet prepared
You may be tall
and well proportioned in self, but none such can enter here. None can be
admitted who are grown-up children, with all the habits and customs, the
disposition, the characteristics, which pertain to children. You have nurtured
your suspicions, your criticisms, your bad temper, your dignity, and you can
not be permitted to spoil the feast. All who enter through the door have on the
wedding garment, woven in the loom of heaven. Your leaven of distrust, your
want of confidence, your power of accusing, closes against you the door of
admittance. Within this door, nothing can enter that can possibly mar the
happiness of the dwellers here by marring their perfect trust in one another.
Those who have educated themselves to pick flaws in the characters of others,
have thus revealed a deformity of character which has made families unhappy,
which has turned souls from the truth to choose fables. You can not join the
happy family in the heavenly courts, for God has wiped all tears from their
eyes. You can never see the King of beauty, if you are not yourself a
representative of the loveliness of Christ's character. Abiding with Christ is
choosing only the disposition of Christ, so that he identifies his interests with
yours. When you give up your own will, your own wisdom, and learn of Christ as
he has invited you to do, then you shall find entrance into the kingdom of God.
Entire, unreserved surrender he requires. Give up your life for him to order,
mould, and fashion. Take upon your neck his yoke, submit to be led and taught,
as well as to lead and teach. Learn that unless you become as a little child,
you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Abide in him, to be and do only
what he wills. These are the conditions of discipleship.
conditions are complied with, you can not have rest. Rest is in Christ; it can
not be found as something he gives apart from himself. The moment the yoke is
adjusted to your neck, that moment it is found easy; and the heaviest labor in
spiritual lines can be performed, the heaviest burdens can be borne, because
the Lord gives the strength and the power, and he gives gladness in doing the
Mark the points:
Learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart. Who is it that speaks thus?--The
Majesty of heaven, the King of glory. He desires that your conception of
spiritual things shall be purified from the fog of selfishness, the defilement
of a crooked, coarse, unsympathetic nature. You must have an inward, higher
experience. You must obtain a growth in grace by abiding in Christ. And when
you are converted, you will not be a hindrance, but will strengthen your
-The Gospel Herald, April 23, 1902