Christ’s life on earth was meek and lowly. He did not take his place upon a throne as commander of the earth. He attached to his name no high titles, to make his position understood. He took not on him the nature of angels. For our sake he stepped down from his royal throne, and clothed his divinity with humanity. He laid aside his royal robe, his kingly crown, that he might be one with us. He resigned his position as commander in the heavenly courts, and for our sakes became poor, that we through his poverty might be made rich. He hid his glory under the guise of humanity, that his divine, transforming power might touch humanity.
While on earth, Christ lived in the home of a peasant. He wore the best garments his parents could provide, but they were the humble garments of the peasants. He walked the rough paths of Nazareth, and climbed the steeps of its hillsides and mountains. In his home he was a constant worker, and left on record a life filled with useful deeds. Had Christ passed his life among the grand and the rich, the world of toilers would have been deprived of the inspiration that the Lord intended they should have. But Christ knew that his work must begin in consecrating the humble trade of the craftsmen who toil for their daily bread. He learned the trade of a carpenter, that he might stamp honest labor as honorable and ennobling to all who work with an eye single to the glory of God. And angels were his attendants; for Christ was just as truly doing his Father’s business when toiling at the carpenter’s bench, as when working miracles for the multitude. He held his commission and authority from the highest power, the Sovereign of heaven.
Christ descended to poverty that he might teach how closely in our daily life we may walk with God. He took human nature that he might be able to sympathize with all hearts. He was capable of sympathizing with all. He could engage in toil, bear his part in sustaining the family in their necessity, become accustomed to weariness, and yet show no impatience. His spirit was never so full of worldly cares as to leave no time nor thought for heavenly things. He often held communion with heaven in song. The men of Nazareth often heard his voice raised in prayer and thanksgiving to God; and those who associated with him, who often complained of their weariness, were cheered by the sweet melody that fell from his lips.
Christ knew that it required much patience and spirituality to bring Bible religion into the home life, into the workshop, to bear all the strain of practical life, and yet keep the eye single to the glory of God; and this is where he was a helper. In elevated song he would speak his parables, and carry the minds of his hearers with him. A fragrant influence was diffused to those around him, and they were blessed. His praises seemed to drive away the evil angels, and fill the place with sweet fragrance. He carried the minds of his hearers away from their earthly exile to their future, eternal home.
All this has its lesson for us. We also may commune with God in words of holy song. Our house of worship may be very humble, but it is none the less acknowledged by God. If we worship in spirit, and in truth, and in the beauty of holiness, it will be to us the very gate of heaven. As lessons of the wondrous works of God are repeated, and as the heart’s gratitude is expressed in prayer and song, angels from heaven take up the strain, and unite in praise and thanksgiving to God. These exercises drive back the power of Satan. They expel murmurings and complainings, and Satan loses ground.
God teaches us that we should assemble in his house to cultivate the attributes of perfect love. This will fit the dwellers of earth for the mansions Christ has gone to prepare for those who love him, where, from Sabbath to Sabbath, from one new moon to another, they will assemble in the sanctuary to unite in loftier strains of song, in thanksgiving and praise to him that sitteth upon the throne and to the Lamb forever and ever.
Christ would have us realize that our interests are one. A divine Saviour died for all, that all might find in him their divine source. In Christ Jesus we are one. By the utterance of one name, “Our Father,” we are lifted to the same rank. We become members of the royal family, children of the heavenly King. His principles of truth bind heart to heart, be they rich or poor, high or low.
When the Holy Spirit moves upon human minds, all petty complaints and accusations between man and his fellow man will be put away. The bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness will shine into the chambers of the mind and heart. In our worship of God there will be no distinction between rich and poor, white and black. All prejudice will be melted away. When we approach God, it will be as one brotherhood. We are pilgrims and strangers, bound for a better country, even a heavenly. There all pride, all accusation, all self-deception, will forever have an end. Every mask will be laid aside, and we shall “see him as he is.” There our songs will catch the inspiring theme, and praise and thanksgiving will go up to God.
This first appeared in The Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, October 24, 1899. Seventh-day Adventists believe Ellen G. White (1827-1915) exercised the biblical gift of prophecy during more than 70 years of public ministry.