〉 Chapter 10—Good Angels More Powerful Than Evil Angels
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Chapter 10—Good Angels More Powerful Than Evil Angels
[Appeared in Notebook Leaflets, Christian Experience, No. 15.] (1SM 94)
It is expressly stated that Satan works in the children of disobedience, not merely having access to their minds, but working through their influence, conscious and unconscious, to draw others into the same disobedience. If evil angels have such power over the children of men in their disobedience, how much greater power the good angels have over those who are striving to be obedient. When we put our trust in Jesus Christ, working obedience unto righteousness, angels of God work in our hearts unto righteousness (1SM 94.1)
Angels came and ministered to our Lord in the wilderness of temptation. Heavenly angels were with Him during all the period in which He was exposed to the assaults of satanic agencies. These assaults were more severe than man has ever passed through. Everything was at stake in behalf of the human family. In this conflict Christ did not frame His words even. He depended upon “It is written” (Matthew 4:4). In this conflict the humanity of Christ was taxed as none of us will ever know. The Prince of life and the prince of darkness met in terrible conflict, but Satan was unable to gain the least advantage in word or in action. These were real temptations, no pretense. Christ “suffered being tempted” (Hebrews 2:18). Angels of heaven were on the scene on that occasion, and kept the standard uplifted, that Satan should not exceed his bounds and overpower the human nature of Christ. (1SM 94.2)
In the last temptation Satan presented to Christ the prospect of gaining the whole world with all its glory if He would only worship him who claimed to be sent of God. Christ must then issue His command. He must then exercise authority above all satanic agencies. Divinity flashed through humanity, and Satan was peremptorily repulsed. “Get thee hence, Satan,” Christ said, “for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve” (Matthew 4:10). (1SM 95.1)
It was enough. Satan could go no further. Angels ministered to the Saviour. Angels brought Him food. The severity of this conflict no human mind can compass. The welfare of the whole human family and of Christ Himself was at stake. One admission from Christ, one word of concession, and the world would be claimed by Satan as his; and he, the prince of the power of darkness, would, he supposed, commence his rule. There appeared unto Christ an angel from heaven; for the conflict ended. Human power was ready to fail. But all heaven sang the song of eternal victory. (1SM 95.2)
The human family have all the help that Christ had in their conflicts with Satan. They need not be overcome. They may be more than conquerors through Him who has loved them and given His life for them. “Ye are bought with a price” (1 Corinthians 6:20). And what a price! The Son of God in His humanity wrestled with the very same fierce, apparently overwhelming temptations that assail men—temptations to indulgence of appetite, to presumptuous venturing where God has not led them, and to the worship of the God of this world, to sacrifice an eternity of bliss for the fascinating pleasures of this life. Everyone will be tempted, but the Word declares that we shall not be tempted above our ability to bear. We may resist and defeat the wily foe. (1SM 95.3)
A Heaven to Win
Every soul has a heaven to win, and a hell to shun. And the angelic agencies are all ready to come to the help of the tried and tempted soul. He, the Son of the infinite God, endured the test and trial in our behalf. The cross of Calvary stands vividly before every soul. When the cases of all are judged, and they [the lost] are delivered to suffer for their contempt for God and their disregard of His honor in their disobedience, not one will have an excuse, not one will need to have perished. It was left to their own choice who should be their prince, Christ or Satan. All the help Christ received, every man may receive in the great trial. The cross stands as a pledge that not one need be lost, that abundant help is provided for every soul. We can conquer the satanic agencies, or we can join ourselves with the powers that seek to counterwork the work of God in our world (1SM 96.1) 2 I
We have an Advocate pleading in our behalf. The Holy Ghost is continually engaged in beholding our course of action. We need now keen perception, that by our own practical godliness the truth may be made to appear truth as it is in Jesus. The angelic agencies are messengers from heaven, actually ascending and descending, keeping earth in constant connection with the heaven above. These angel messengers are observing all our course of action. They are ready to help all in their weakness, guarding all from moral and physical danger according to the providence of God. And whenever souls yield to the softening, subduing influence of the Spirit of God under these angel ministrations, there is joy in heaven; the Lord Himself rejoices with singing. (1SM 96.2)
Men take altogether too much glory to themselves. It is the work of heavenly agencies cooperating with human agencies according to God’s plan that brings the result in the conversion and sanctification of the human character. We cannot see and could not endure the glory of angelic ministrations if their glory was not veiled in condescension to the weakness of our human nature. The blaze of the heavenly glory, as seen in the angels of light, would extinguish earthly mortals. Angels are working upon human minds just as these minds are given to their charge; they bring precious remembrances fresh before the mind as they did to the women about the sepulcher. (1SM 96.3)
A created instrumentality is used in heaven’s organized plan for the renewing of our nature, working in the children of disobedience obedience unto God. The guardianship of the heavenly host is granted to all who will work in God’s ways and follow His plans. We may in earnest, contrite prayer call the heavenly helpers to our side. Invisible armies of light and power will work with the humble, meek, and lowly one.—Letter 116, 1899. (1SM 97.1)
Angels Looking for Cooperation
Satan uses human agents to bring the soul under the power of temptation, but the angels of God are searching for human agents through whom they may cooperate to save the tempted ones. Angels are looking for those who will work in Christ’s lines, who will be moved by the realization that they belong to Christ. They are looking for those who will feel that those who fall under temptation, whether high or low, are the ones who need their special labors, and that Christ looks on those who are passed by, neglected, wounded, and bruised by the enemy, and ready to die, and is grieved at the hardness of men, who refuse to exercise the faith that works by love, which will purify the soul. (1SM 97.2)
Angels of God will work with, and through, and by those who will cooperate with the heavenly agencies for the saving of a soul from death, and the hiding of a multitude of sins, that will lead them to consider themselves, lest they also be tempted. (1SM 97.3)
It is the sick that need a physician, not those who are whole. When you expend labor on those who do not need it, and take no notice of the very ones whom your words and actions could bless, you are forming a character that is not after the likeness of Christ.—Letter 70, 1894. (1SM 97.4)