Transformed by Communion With God, January 28

But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. 2 Corinthians 3:18, NKJV. BLJ 35.1
During that long time spent in communion with God, the face of Moses had reflected the glory of the divine Presence; unknown to himself his face shone with a dazzling light when he descended from the mountain. Such a light illumined the countenance of Stephen when brought before his judges; “and all that sat in the council, looking stedfastly on him, saw his face as it had been the face of an angel” (Acts 6:15). BLJ 35.2
Aaron as well as the people shrank away from Moses, and “they were afraid to come nigh him.” Seeing their confusion and terror, but ignorant of the cause, he urged them to come near. He held out to them the pledge of God’s reconciliation, and assured them of His restored favor. They perceived in his voice nothing but love and entreaty, and at last one ventured to approach him. Too awed to speak, he silently pointed to the countenance of Moses, and then toward heaven. The great leader understood his meaning. In their conscious guilt, feeling themselves still under the divine displeasure, they could not endure the heavenly light, which, had they been obedient to God, would have filled them with joy…. BLJ 35.3
By this brightness God designed to impress upon Israel the sacred, exalted character of His law, and the glory of the gospel revealed through Christ. While Moses was in the mount, God presented to him, not only the tables of the law, but also the plan of salvation. He saw that the sacrifice of Christ was prefigured by all the types and symbols of the Jewish age; and it was the heavenly light streaming from Calvary, no less than the glory of the law of God, that shed such a radiance upon the face of Moses. That divine illumination symbolized the glory of the dispensation of which Moses was the visible mediator, a representative of the one true Intercessor. BLJ 35.4
The glory reflected in the countenance of Moses illustrates the blessings to be received by God’s commandment-keeping people through the mediation of Christ. It testifies that the closer our communion with God, and the clearer our knowledge of His requirements, the more fully shall we be conformed to the divine image, and the more readily do we become partakers of the divine nature.—Patriarchs and Prophets, 329, 330. BLJ 35.5
 

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Prayer an Effective Weapon Against Satan, January 27

Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. James 4:7, 8, NKJV. BLJ 34.1
Satan is constantly at work, but few have any idea of his activity and subtlety. The people of God must be prepared to withstand the wily foe. It is this resistance that Satan dreads. He knows better than we do the limit of his power and how easily he can be overcome if we resist and face him. BLJ 34.2
Through divine strength the weakest saint is more than a match for him and all his angels, and if brought to the test [the weakest saint] would be able to prove … superior power. Therefore Satan’s step is noiseless, his movements stealthy, and his batteries masked. He does not venture to show himself openly, lest he arouse the Christian’s dormant energies and send him or her to God in prayer. BLJ 34.3
The enemy is preparing for his last campaign against the church. He has so concealed himself from view that many can hardly believe that he exists, much less can they be convinced of his amazing activity and power…. Boasting of their independence they will, under his specious, bewitching influence, obey the worst impulses of the human heart and yet believe that God is leading them. Could their eyes be opened to distinguish their captain, they would see that they are not serving God, but the enemy of all righteousness. They would see that their boasted independence is one of the heaviest fetters Satan can rivet on unbalanced minds. BLJ 34.4
Human beings are Satan’s captives and are naturally inclined to follow his suggestions and do his bidding. They have in themselves no power to oppose effectual resistance to evil. It is only as Christ abides in them by living faith, influencing their desires and strengthening them with strength from above, that they may venture to face so terrible a foe. Every other means of defense is utterly vain. It is only through Christ that Satan’s power is limited. This is a momentous truth that all should understand. Satan is busy every moment, going to and fro, walking up and down in the earth, seeking whom he may devour. But the earnest prayer of faith will baffle his strongest efforts. Then take “the shield of faith,” brethren and sisters, “wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.”—Testimonies for the Church 5:293, 294. BLJ 34.5
 

Walking With God Through Prayer, January 26

Enoch walked with God three hundred years, and begot sons and daughters…. And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him. Genesis 5:22-24, NKJV. BLJ 33.1
While engaged in our daily work, we should lift the soul to heaven in prayer. These silent petitions rise like incense before the throne of grace; and the enemy is baffled. The Christian whose heart is thus stayed upon God cannot be overcome. No evil arts can destroy his or her peace. All the promises of God’s Word, all the power of divine grace, all the resources of Jehovah, are pledged to secure his or her deliverance. It was thus that Enoch walked with God. And God was with him, a present help in every time of need. BLJ 33.2
Prayer is the breath of the soul. It is the secret of spiritual power. No other means of grace can be substituted and the health of the soul be preserved. Prayer brings the heart into immediate contact with the Wellspring of life, and strengthens the sinew and muscle of the religious experience. Neglect the exercise of prayer, or engage in prayer spasmodically, now and then, as seems convenient, and you lose your hold on God. The spiritual faculties lose their vitality, the religious experience lacks health and vigor…. BLJ 33.3
It is a wonderful thing that we can pray effectually, that unworthy, erring mortals possess the power of offering their requests to God. What higher power can human beings desire than this—to be linked with the infinite God? Feeble, sinful human beings have the privilege of speaking to their Maker. We may utter words that reach the throne of the Monarch of the universe. We may speak with Jesus as we walk by the way, and He says, I am at thy right hand. BLJ 33.4
We may commune with God in our hearts; we may walk in companionship with Christ. When engaged in our daily labor, we may breathe out our heart’s desire, inaudible to any human ear; but that word cannot die away into silence, nor can it be lost. Nothing can drown the soul’s desire. It rises above the din of the street, above the noise of machinery. It is God to whom we are speaking, and our prayer is heard.—Messages to Young People, 249, 250 BLJ 33.5
 

Spiritual Growth Through Prayer, January 25

Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Matthew 7:7, 8, NKJV. BLJ 32.1
Ministers [and all] who would labor effectively for the salvation of souls must be both Bible students and men and women of prayer. It is a sin for those who attempt to teach the Word to others to be themselves neglectful of its study. All who feel the worth of souls will flee to the stronghold of truth, where they may be furnished with wisdom, knowledge, strength, and divine power to work the works of God. They should not rest without the holy unction from on high. Too much is at stake for them to dare to be careless in regard to their spiritual advancement…. BLJ 32.2
Ministers of Christ [and others] whom God has made the depositaries of His law, you have an unpopular truth. You must bear this truth to the world. Warnings must be given … to prepare for the great day of God. You must reach those whose hearts are calloused by sin and love of the world. Continual and fervent prayer, and earnestness in well-doing, will bring you into communion with God; your mind and heart will imbibe a sense of eternal things, and the heavenly unction, which springs from connection with God, will be poured upon you. It will render your testimony powerful to convict and convert. Your light will not be uncertain, but your path will be luminous with heavenly brightness. God is all-powerful, and Heaven is full of light. You have only to use the means God has placed in your power to obtain the divine blessing. BLJ 32.3
Be instant in prayer. You are a savor of life unto life, or of death unto death. You occupy a fearfully responsible position. I entreat you to redeem the time. Come very near to God in supplication, and you will be like a tree planted by the river of waters, whose leaf is always green, and whose fruit appears in due season…. Only go to God, and take Him at His word, and let your works be sustained by living faith in His promises. God does not require from you eloquent prayers and logical reasoning; but only a humble, contrite heart, ready and willing to learn of Him.—The Review and Herald, August 8, 1878. BLJ 32.4
 

God’s people to Keep the Sabbath.

And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Genesis 2:2, NKJV. BLJ 132.1
God sanctified and blessed the day in which He had rested from all His wondrous work. And this Sabbath, sanctified of God, was to be kept for a perpetual covenant. It was a memorial that was to stand from age to age, till the close of earth’s history. BLJ 132.2
God brought the Hebrews out of their Egyptian bondage, and commanded them to observe His Sabbath, and keep the law given in Eden. Every week He worked a miracle to establish in their minds the fact that in the beginning of the world He had instituted the Sabbath…. BLJ 132.3
In the third month they came to the desert of Sinai, and there the law was spoken from the mount in awful grandeur. During their stay in Egypt, Israel had so long heard and seen idolatry practiced that to a large degree they had lost their knowledge of God and of His law, and their sense of the importance and sacredness of the Sabbath; the law was given a second time to call these things to their remembrance. In God’s statutes was defined practical religion for all mankind. Before Israel was placed the true standard of righteousness. BLJ 132.4
“And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep.” Some, who have been anxious to make of none effect the law of God, have quoted this word “sabbaths,” interpreting it to mean the annual sabbaths of the Jews. But they do not connect this positive requirement with that which follows: “For it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you. Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth it shall surely be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people. Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest, holy to the Lord: whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant. It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever: for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed.”—The Review and Herald, August 30, 1898. BLJ 132.5
 

Prayers of a Godly Woman Answered, January 23

For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me my petition which I asked of Him. 1 Samuel 1:27, NKJV. BLJ 30.1
Elkanah, a Levite of Mount Ephraim, was a man of wealth and influence, and one who loved and feared the Lord. His wife, Hannah, was a woman of fervent piety. Gentle and unassuming, her character was marked with deep earnestness and a lofty faith. BLJ 30.2
The blessing so earnestly sought by every Hebrew was denied this godly pair; their home was not gladdened by the voice of childhood; and the desire to perpetuate his name led the husband—as it had led many others—to contract a second marriage. But this step, prompted by a lack of faith in God, did not bring happiness. Sons and daughters were added to the household; but the joy and beauty of God’s sacred institution had been marred and the peace of the family was broken. Peninnah, the new wife, was jealous and narrow-minded, and she bore herself with pride and insolence. To Hannah, hope seemed crushed and life a weary burden; yet she met the trial with uncomplaining meekness…. BLJ 30.3
The burden which she could share with no earthly friend she cast upon God. Earnestly she pleaded that He would take away her reproach and grant her the precious gift of a son to nurture and train for Him. And she made a solemn vow that if her request were granted, she would dedicate her child to God, even from its birth…. BLJ 30.4
Hannah’s prayer was granted; she received the gift for which she had so earnestly entreated. As she looked upon the child, she called him Samuel—“asked of God.” As soon as the little one was old enough to be separated from his mother, she fulfilled her vow…. From Shiloh, Hannah quietly returned to her home at Ramah, leaving the child Samuel to be trained for service in the house of God, under the instruction of the high priest. From the earliest dawn of intellect she had taught her son to love and reverence God and to regard himself as the Lord’s. By every familiar object surrounding him she had sought to lead his thoughts up to the Creator. When separated from her child, the faithful mother’s solicitude did not cease. Every day he was the subject of her prayers…. She did not ask for her son worldly greatness, but she earnestly pleaded that he might attain that greatness which Heaven values—that he might honor God and bless his fellow human beings.—Patriarchs and Prophets, 569-572. BLJ 30.5
 

Look to Jesus in Prayer, January 22

And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up. John 3:14, NKJV. BLJ 29.1
Throughout the camp of Israel there were the suffering and the dying who had been wounded by the deadly sting of the serpent. But Jesus Christ spoke from the pillar of cloud, and gave directions whereby the people might be healed. The promise was made that whosoever looked upon the brazen serpent should live; and to those who looked the promise was verified. But if anyone said: “What good will it do to look? I shall certainly die under the serpent’s deadly sting”; if they continued to talk of their deadly wound, and declared that their case was hopeless, and would not perform the simple act of obedience, they would die. But everyone who looked lived…. BLJ 29.2
Our attention is now called to the Great Physician. “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” Just as long as we look at our sins, and talk of and deplore our wretched condition, our wounds and putrefying sores will remain. It is when we take our eyes from ourselves, and fasten them upon the uplifted Savior, that our souls find hope and peace. The Lord speaks to us through His Word, bidding us “look and live.” “He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true. For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him. The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life.” BLJ 29.3
There is every reason why we should be encouraged to hope for the salvation of our souls. In Jesus Christ every provision for our salvation has been made. No matter what may have been our sins and shortcomings, there is a fountain open in the house of David for all sin and uncleanness. “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord; though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” This is the word of the Lord. Shall we accept it? Shall we believe on Him?—The Signs of the Times, April 2, 1894. BLJ 29.4
 

By Prayer, Prepare for Convocations, January 21

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded…. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up. James 4:8-10, NKJV. BLJ 28.1
Here is a work for families to engage in before coming up to our holy convocations. Let the preparation for eating and dressing be a secondary matter, but let deep heart-searching commence at home. Pray three times a day, and, like Jacob, be importunate. At home is the place to find Jesus; then take Him with you to the meeting, and how precious will be the hours you spend there. But how can you expect to feel the presence of the Lord and see His power displayed when the individual work of preparation for that time is neglected? BLJ 28.2
For your soul’s sake, for Christ’s sake, and for the sake of others, work at home. Pray as you are not accustomed to pray. Let the heart break before God. Set your house in order. Prepare your children for the occasion. Teach them that it is not of so much consequence that they appear with fine clothes as that they appear before God with clean hands and pure hearts. Remove every obstacle that may have been in their way—all differences that may have existed among themselves or between you and them. By so doing you will invite the Lord’s presence into your homes, and holy angels will attend you as you go up to the meeting, and their light and presence will press back the darkness of evil angels…. BLJ 28.3
Oh, how much is lost by neglecting this important work! You may be pleased with the preaching, you may become animated and revived, but the converting, reforming power of God will not be felt in the heart, and the work will not be so deep, thorough, and lasting as it should be. Let pride be crucified and the soul be clad with the priceless robe of Christ’s righteousness, and what a meeting will you enjoy. It will be to your soul even as the gate of heaven. BLJ 28.4
The same work of humiliation and heart-searching should also go on in the church, so that all differences and alienations among the members may be laid aside before appearing before the Lord…. Set about this work in earnest …; for if you come up to the meeting with your doubts, your murmurings, your disputings, you bring evil angels into the camp and carry darkness wherever you go.—Testimonies for the Church 5:164, 165. BLJ 28.5
 

Prayers Enlist the Help of Angels, January 20

For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life. Galatians 6:8, NKJV. BLJ 27.1
Young men and women, you are accountable to God for the light that He has given you. This light and these warnings, if not heeded, will rise up in the judgment against you. Your dangers have been plainly stated; you have been cautioned and guarded on every side, hedged in with warnings. In the house of God you have listened to the most solemn, heart-searching truths presented by the servants of God in demonstration of the Spirit. What weight do these solemn appeals have upon your hearts? What influence do they have upon your characters? You will be held responsible for every one of these appeals and warnings. They will rise up in the judgment to condemn those who pursue a life of vanity, levity, and pride…. BLJ 27.2
After this light has been given, after your dangers have been plainly presented before you, the responsibility becomes yours. The manner in which you treat the light that God gives you will turn the scale for happiness or woe. You are shaping your destinies for yourselves. You all have an influence for good or for evil on the minds and characters of others. And just the influence which you exert is written in the book of records in heaven. An angel is attending you and taking record of your words and actions. When you rise in the morning, do you feel your helplessness and your need of strength from God? And do you humbly, heartily make known your wants to your heavenly Father? If so, angels mark your prayers, and if these prayers have not gone forth out of feigned lips, when you are in danger of unconsciously doing wrong and exerting an influence which will lead others to do wrong, your guardian angel will be by your side, prompting you to a better course, choosing your words for you, and influencing your actions…. BLJ 27.3
Immortal glory and eternal life is the reward that our Redeemer offers to those who will be obedient to Him. He has made it possible for them to perfect Christian character through His name and to overcome on their own account as He overcame in their behalf. He has given them an example in His own life, showing them how they may overcome. “The wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”—Testimonies for the Church 3:363-365. BLJ 27.4