The Holy Spirit is a divine teacher. If we heed His lessons we shall become wise unto salvation. But we need to guard well our hearts, for too often we forget the heavenly instruction we have received and seek to act out the natural inclinations of our unconsecrated minds. Each one must fight his own battle against self. Heed the teachings of the Holy Spirit. If this is done, they will be repeated again and again until the impressions are as it were "laid in the rock forever." . . . CH 561
True holiness is wholeness in the service of God. This is the condition of true Christian living. Christ asks for an unreserved consecration, for undivided service. He demands the heart, the mind, the soul, the strength. Self is not to be cherished. He who lives to himself is not a Christian. COL 48, 49.
It is not only at the beginning of the Christian life that this renunciation of self is to be made. At every advance step heavenward it is to be renewed. All our good works are dependent on a power outside of ourselves. Therefore there needs to be a continual reaching out of the heart after God, a continual, earnest, heartbreaking confession of sin and humbling of the soul before Him. Only by constant renunciation of self and dependence on Christ can we walk safely. COL 159, 160
We have no enemy without that we need to fear. Our great conflict is with unconsecrated self. When we conquer self, we are more than conquerors through Him who has loved us. My brethren, there is eternal life for us to win. Let us fight the good fight of faith. Not in the future, but now, is our probation. CS 21, 22
A religious experience is gained only through conflict, through disappointment, through severe discipline of self, through earnest prayer. The steps to heaven must be taken one at a time, and every advance step gives strength for the next. CT 100
He who loves Christ the most will do the greatest amount of good. There is no limit to the usefulness of one who, by putting self aside, makes room for the working of the Holy Spirit upon his heart, and lives a life wholly consecrated to God. DA 250, 251.
There are those who for a time are successful in the struggle against their selfish desire for pleasure and ease. They are sincere and earnest, but grow weary of protracted effort, of daily death, of ceaseless turmoil. Indolence seems inviting, death to self repulsive; and they close their drowsy eyes, and fall under the power of temptation instead of resisting it.
[ Counsel to Those New in the Faith. ] I would address you who have come to a knowledge of the truth in _____. You are young in the faith, and there is great need of your walking humbly with God, and of learning daily in the school of Christ by dwelling particularly in meditation and conversation upon the lessons which He gave to His disciples. Walk in all humility of mind, distrustful of self, seeking wisdom from the God of wisdom, that all your ways and methods may be in firm and close connection with the ways and the will of God, that there may be no confusion. . . . EV 341
The directions laid down in the word of God leave no room for compromise with evil. The Son of God was manifested that He might draw all men unto
Himself. He came not to lull the world to sleep, but to point out the narrow path in which all must travel who reach at last the gates of the city of God. His
children must follow where He has led the way; at whatever sacrifice of ease or selfish indulgence, at whatever cost of labour or suffering, they must maintain a constant battle with self. GW 135
The world will never know the work secretly going on between the soul and God, nor the inward bitterness of spirit, the self-loathing, and the constant efforts to control self; but many of the world will be able to appreciate the result of these efforts. GW 323
The Christian life is a battle and a march. But the victory to be gained is not won by human power. The field of conflict is the domain of the heart. The battle which we have to fight--the greatest battle that was ever fought by man--is the surrender of self to the will of God, the yielding of the heart to the sovereignty of love. The old nature, born of blood and of the will of the flesh, cannot inherit the kingdom of God. The hereditary tendencies, the former habits, must be given up. MB 141
Angels of glory that do always behold the face of the Father in heaven, joy in ministering to His little ones. Angels are ever present where they are most needed, with those who have the hardest battles with self to fight, and whose surroundings are the most discouraging. MH 105
Wrongs cannot be righted, nor can reformations in conduct be made by a few feeble, intermittent efforts. Character building is the work, not of a day, nor of a year, but of a lifetime. The struggle for conquest over self, for holiness and heaven, is a lifelong struggle. Without continual effort and constant activity, there can be no advancement in the divine life, no attainment of the victor's crown.
The strongest evidence of man's fall from a higher state is the fact that it costs so much to return. The way of return can be gained only by hard fighting, inch by inch, hour by hour. In one moment, by a hasty, unguarded act, we may place ourselves in the power of evil; but it requires more than a moment to break the fetters and attain to a holier life. The purpose may be formed, the work begun; but its accomplishment will require toil, time, perseverance, patience, and sacrifice. MH 452
Self is the enemy we most need to fear. No form of vice has a more baleful effect upon the character than has human passion not under the control of the Holy Spirit. No other victory we can gain will be so precious as the victory gained over self. MH 485
So long as we are in the world, we shall meet with adverse influences. There will be provocations to test the temper; and it is by meeting these in a right spirit that the Christian graces are developed. If Christ dwells in us, we shall be patient, kind, and forbearing, cheerful amid frets and irritations. Day by day and year by year we shall conquer self, and grow into a noble heroism. This is our allotted task; but it cannot be accomplished without help from Jesus, resolute decision, unwavering purpose, continual watchfulness, and unceasing prayer. Each one has a personal battle to fight. Not even God can make our characters noble or our lives useful, unless we become co-workers with Him. Those who decline the struggle lose the strength and joy of victory. MH 487
Words cannot describe the peace and joy possessed by him who takes God at His word. Trials do not disturb him, slights do not vex him. Self is crucified. Day by day his duties may become more taxing, his temptations stronger, his trials more severe; but he does not falter; for he receives strength equal to his need. MYP 98
True sanctification is an entire conformity to the will of God. Rebellious thoughts and feelings are overcome, and the voice of Jesus awakens a new life, which pervades the entire being. Those who are truly sanctified will not set up their own opinion as a standard of right and wrong. They are not bigoted or self-righteous; but they are jealous of self, ever fearing, lest a promise being left them, they should come short of complying with the conditions upon which the promises are based....
There is no such thing as instantaneous sanctification. True sanctification is a daily work, continuing as long as life shall last. Those who are battling with daily temptations, over-coming their own sinful tendencies, and seeking for holiness of heart and life make no boastful claims of holiness. ML 248
The outside appearance is frequently an index to the mind, and we should be careful what signs we hang out for the world to judge of our faith. We want you to follow Jesus as dear children, obedient to His expressed will in all things. We want you to please your Redeemer by seeking earnestly that inward adorning. Thus day by day, with the help of Jesus, you may overcome self. Pride and love of display will be discarded from your hearts and lives. Meekness and love of simplicity will be encouraged. Thus the youth may become an army of faithful soldiers for Christ. MYP 346, 347
What path so dark for human feet to tread as that chosen by one who has persisted in having his own way, resisting the holy influences of the Spirit of God! What bondage so terrible as that of him who is given over to the control of the worst of tyrants--himself! PP 676
The warfare against self is the greatest battle that was ever fought. The yielding of self, surrendering all to the will of God, requires a struggle; but the soul must submit to God before it can be renewed in holiness. SC 43.
As God's agent you are to yield yourselves to Him, that He may plan and direct and fight the battle for you, with your co-operation. The Prince of life is at the head of His work. He is to be with you in your daily battle with self, that you may be true to principle; that passion, when warring for the mastery, may be subdued by the grace of Christ; that you come off more than conqueror through Him that hath loved us. SD 160
Today you are to give yourselves to God, that He may make of you vessels unto honour, and meet for His service. Today you are to give yourself to God, that you may be emptied of self, emptied of envy, jealousy, evil surmising, strife, everything that shall be dishonouring to God. Today you are to have your vessel purified that it may be ready for the heavenly dew, ready for the showers of the latter rain; for the latter rain will come, and the blessing of God will fill every soul that is purified from every defilement. It is our work today to yield our souls to Christ, that we may be fitted for the time of refreshing from the presence of the Lord--fitted for the baptism of the Holy Spirit. 1SM 191
[ To Brother R. ] You should not neglect diligent study, but should pray for light from God that He would open to your understanding the treasures of His word, that you may be thoroughly furnished unto all good works. You will never be in a position where it is not necessary for you to watch and pray earnestly in order to overcome your besetments. You will need to be guarded continually to keep self out of sight. You have encouraged a habit of making yourself very prominent, dwelling upon your family difficulties and your poor health. In short, yourself has been the theme of your conversation and has come in between you and your Saviour. You should forget self and hide behind Jesus. Let the dear Saviour be magnified, but lose sight of self. When you see and feel your weakness you will not see that there is anything in yourself worthy of notice or remark. 3T 235
You have need, Brother B, of constant vigilance lest you be overcome by Satan's temptations to live for yourself, to be jealous and envious, suspicious and faultfinding. If you go murmuringly along, you make not one step of progress in the heavenly road. If you stop for a moment in your earnest efforts and prayerful endeavours to subdue and control yourself, you are in danger of being overcome by some strong temptation; you may take imprudent steps; you may manifest an unchristian spirit, which will not only bring bitterness to your own soul, but sadness to the minds of others. 4T 37, 38
[ Brother A. ] If you were in daily communion with the Lord and cultivated a love for souls you would grow out of self and become an earnest worker in the vineyard of the Lord. You would perceive how the faithful performance of the duties of life would preserve you from self-love and self-gratification. You have not been diligent, seeking to gain an advanced experience every day. You should be at this time a trusty man in any position of responsibility, but selfishness has marked the performance of everything you have set your hand to do. 4T 190
You need to cultivate self-control. The lesson you should have learned in your youth should be mastered now. Discipline yourself to die to self, to bring your will in subjection to the will of Christ. A deep and thorough conversion is essential, or you, my dear brother, will fail of eternal life. 4T 215
Self is difficult to conquer. Human depravity in every form is not easily brought into subjection to the Spirit of Christ. But all should be impressed with the fact that unless this victory is gained through Christ, there is no hope for them. The victory can be gained; for nothing is impossible with God. 4T 349
There are few really consecrated men among us, few who have fought and conquered in the battle with self. Real conversion is a decided change of feelings and motives; it is a virtual taking leave of worldly connections, a hastening from their spiritual atmosphere, a withdrawing from the controlling power of their thoughts, opinions, and influences. 5T 82, 83
For your soul's sake, my brethren, have an eye single to the glory of God. Leave self out of your thoughts as much as possible. We are nearing the close of time. Examine your motives in the light of eternity. 5T 97
Character will be tested. Christ will be revealed in us if we are indeed branches of the living Vine. We shall be patient, kind, and forbearing, cheerful amid frets and irritations. Day by day and year by year we shall conquer self and grow into a noble heroism. This is our allotted task; but it cannot be accomplished without continual help from Jesus, resolute decision, unwavering purpose, continual watchfulness, and unceasing prayer. Each one has a personal battle to fight. Each must win his own way through struggles and discouragements. Those who decline the struggle lose the strength and joy of victory. No one, not even God, can carry us to heaven unless we make the necessary effort on our part. We must put features of beauty into our lives. We must expel the unlovely natural traits that make us unlike Jesus. While God works in us to will and to do of His own good pleasure, we must work in harmony with Him. The religion of Christ transforms the heart. It makes the worldly-minded man heavenly-minded. Under its influence the selfish man becomes unselfish because this is the character of Christ. The dishonest, scheming man becomes upright, so that it is second nature to him to do unto others as he would have others do unto him. The profligate is changed from impurity to purity. He forms correct habits, for the gospel of Christ has become to him a savour of life unto life. 5T 345
The transforming power of Christ's grace moulds the one who gives himself to God's service. Imbued with the Spirit of the Redeemer, he is ready to deny self, ready to take up the cross, ready to make any sacrifice for the Master. No longer can he be indifferent to the souls perishing around him. He is lifted above self-serving. He has been created anew in Christ, and self-serving has no place in his life. . . The Christian has no desire to live for self. He delights to consecrate all that he has and is to the Master's service.Â 7T 9, 10
One victory it is positively essential for you both to gain, the victory over the stubborn will. In this struggle you can conquer only by the aid of Christ. You may struggle hard and long to subdue self, but you will fail unless you receive strength from on high. By the grace of Christ you can gain the victory over self and selfishness. As you live His life, showing self-sacrifice at every step, constantly revealing a stronger sympathy for those in need of help, you will gain victory after victory. Day by day you will learn better how to conquer self and how to strengthen your weak points of character. The Lord Jesus will be your light, your strength, your crown of rejoicing, because you yield your will to His will. 7T 49
Wrongs cannot be righted, nor can reformations in character be made, by a few feeble, intermittent efforts. Sanctification is the work, not of a day, or of a year, but of a lifetime. The struggle for conquest over self, for holiness and heaven, is a lifelong struggle. Without continual effort and constant activity there can be no advancement in the divine life, no attainment of the victor's crown. 8T 312, 313
Those who are true to their calling as messengers for God will not seek honour for themselves. Love for self will be swallowed up in love for Christ. They will recognise that it is their work to proclaim, as did John the Baptist: "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." John 1:29. . . We can receive of heaven's light only as we are willing to be emptied of self. We can discern the character of God, and accept Christ by faith, only as we consent to the bringing into captivity of every thought to the obedience of Christ. To all who do this, the Holy Spirit is given without measure. 8T 333, 334
Each one will have a close struggle to overcome sin in his own heart. This is at times a very painful and discouraging work; because, as we see the deformities in our character, we keep looking at them, when we should look to Jesus and put on the robe of His righteousness. Everyone who enters the pearly gates of the city of God will enter there as a conqueror, and his greatest conquest will have been the conquest of self. 9T 182, 183.
Those who are seeking the righteousness of Christ will be dwelling upon the themes of the great salvation. The Bible is the storehouse that supplies their souls with nourishing food. They meditate upon the incarnation of Christ, they contemplate the great sacrifice made to save them from perdition, to bring in pardon, peace, and everlasting righteousness. The soul is aglow with these grand and elevating themes. Holiness and truth, grace and righteousness, occupy the thoughts. Self dies, and Christ lives in His servants. TM 87, 88