Words of Hope…
It was not God’s will for Israel to wander forty years in the wilderness. He wanted to lead them directly to Canaan and establish them there as a holy, happy people. But “they could not enter in because of unbelief” (Hebrews 3:19). In the same way, it was
not God’s will to delay the coming of Christ so long and to have
His people remain so many years in this world of sin and sorrow.
Unbelief separated them from God. In mercy to the world, Jesus delays His coming so that sinners may hear the warning and find
shelter before God pours out His wrath.
Now as in earlier ages, presenting the truth will stir up opposition. With evil intent, many attack the character and motives of those who defend unpopular truth. Elijah was called a troubler in Israel, Jeremiah a traitor, Paul a polluter of the temple. From then until now, those who want to be loyal to truth have been denounced as rebellious, heretical, or divisive.
The confession of faith made by true believers and martyrs, those examples of holiness and firm integrity, inspires courage in those who are now called to stand as witnesses for God. The command comes to the servant of God today, “Lift up your voice like a trumpet; tell My people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.” “I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; therefore you shall hear a word from My mouth and warn them for Me.” (Isaiah 58:1; Ezekiel 33:7.)
The great obstacle to accepting truth is that it involves inconvenience and criticism. This is the only argument against the truth that those who defend truth have never been able to refute. But true followers of Christ do not wait for truth to become popular. They accept the cross, agreeing with Paul that “our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory”; and with Moses, “esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt” (2 Corinthians 4:17; Hebrews 11:26).
We should choose the right because it is right, and leave consequences with God. The world is indebted to people of principle, faith, and daring for its great reforms. The work of reform for this time must be carried forward by people like that.
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Source: Ellen G. White, The Great Hope, pp. 62-63.