And ye will not come to me - Though ye thus search the Scriptures, in hopes of finding the Messiah and eternal life in them, yet ye will not come unto me, believe in me, and be my disciples, though so clearly pointed out by them, that ye may have that eternal life which can only come through me.
And ye will not come - Though the Old Testament bears evidence that I am the Messiah; though you professedly search it to learn the way to life, and though my works prove it, yet you will not come to me to obtain life. From this we may learn:
1.that life is to be obtained in Christ. He is the way, the truth, and the life, and he only can save us.
2.that, in order to do that, we must “come to him” - that is, must come in the way appointed, as lost sinners, and be willing to be saved by him alone.
3.that the reason why sinners are not saved lies in the will. “The only reason why sinners die is because ‹they will not come‘ to Christ for life and happiness: it is not because they ‹cannot,‘ but because they ‹will not‘” (Henry).
4.Sinners have a particular opposition to going to “Jesus Christ” for eternal life. They would prefer any other way, and it is commonly not until all other means are tried that they are willing to submit to him.
I beg of you, my brother, to search your heart diligently and inquire: “What road am I traveling, and where will it end?” You have reason to rejoice that your life has not been cut off while you have no certain hope of eternal life. God forbid that you should longer neglect this work, and so perish in your sins. Do not flatter your soul with false hopes. You see no way to get hold again but one so humble that you cannot consent to accept it. Christ presents to you, even to you, my erring brother, a message of mercy: “Come; for all things are now ready.” God is ready to accept you and to pardon all your transgressions, if you will but come. Though you have been a prodigal, and have separated from God and stayed away from Him so long, He will meet you even now. Yes; the Majesty of heaven invites you to come to Him, that you may have life. Christ is ready to cleanse you from sin when you lay hold upon Him. What profit have you found in serving sin? what profit in serving the flesh and the devil? Is it not poor wages you receive? Oh! turn ye, turn ye; for why will ye die? 2T 295.1
You have had many convictions, many pangs of conscience. You have had so many purposes and made so many promises, and yet you linger and will not come to Christ that you may have life. Oh, that your heart may be impressed with a sense of this time, that you may now turn and live! Cannot you hear the voice of the True Shepherd in this message? How can you disobey? Trifle not with God, lest He leave you to your own crooked ways. It is life or death with you. Which will you choose? It is a fearful thing to contend with God and resist His pleadings. You may have the love of God burning upon the altar of your heart as you once felt it. You may commune with God as you have done in times past. If you will make a clean track behind you you may again experience the riches of His grace, and your countenance again express His love. 2T 296.1
It is not required of you to confess to those who know not your sin and errors. It is not your duty to publish a confession which will lead unbelievers to triumph; but to those to whom it is proper, who will take no advantage of your wrong, confess according to the word of God, and let them pray for you, and God will accept your work, and will heal you. For your soul's sake, be entreated to make thorough work for eternity. Lay aside your pride, your vanity, and make straight work. Come back again to the fold. The Shepherd is waiting to receive you. Repent, and do your first works, and again come into favor with God. 2T 296.2Read in context »
Christ saw in Jerusalem a symbol of the world hardened in unbelief and rebellion, and hastening on to meet the retributive judgments of God. The woes of a fallen race, pressing upon His soul, forced from His lips that exceeding bitter cry. He saw the record of sin traced in human misery, tears, and blood; His heart was moved with infinite pity for the afflicted and suffering ones of earth; He yearned to relieve them all. But even His hand might not turn back the tide of human woe; few would seek their only Source of help. He was willing to pour out His soul unto death, to bring salvation within their reach; but few would come to Him that they might have life. GC 22.1
The Majesty of heaven in tears! the Son of the infinite God troubled in spirit, bowed down with anguish! The scene filled all heaven with wonder. That scene reveals to us the exceeding sinfulness of sin; it shows how hard a task it is, even for Infinite Power, to save the guilty from the consequences of transgressing the law of God. Jesus, looking down to the last generation, saw the world involved in a deception similar to that which caused the destruction of Jerusalem. The great sin of the Jews was their rejection of Christ; the great sin of the Christian world would be their rejection of the law of God, the foundation of His government in heaven and earth. The precepts of Jehovah would be despised and set at nought. Millions in bondage to sin, slaves of Satan, doomed to suffer the second death, would refuse to listen to the words of truth in their day of visitation. Terrible blindness! strange infatuation! GC 22.2
Two days before the Passover, when Christ had for the last time departed from the temple, after denouncing the hypocrisy of the Jewish rulers, He again went out with His disciples to the Mount of Olives and seated Himself with them upon the grassy slope overlooking the city. Once more He gazed upon its walls, its towers, and its palaces. Once more He beheld the temple in its dazzling splendor, a diadem of beauty crowning the sacred mount. GC 23.1Read in context »
22 (ch. 5:40; Luke 12:48). No Provision for Willful Blindness—[John 15:22 quoted.]... Those who have an opportunity to hear the truth, and yet take no pains to hear or understand it, thinking that if they do not hear, they will not be accountable, will be judged guilty before God the same as if they had heard and rejected. There will be no excuse for those who choose to go in error when they might understand what is truth. In His sufferings and death Jesus has made atonement for all sins of ignorance, but there is no provision made for willful blindness.... 5BC 1145.2
We shall not be held accountable for the light that has not reached our perception, but for that which we have resisted and refused. A man could not apprehend the truth which had never been presented to him, and therefore could not be condemned for light he had never had. But if he had opportunity to hear the message, and to become acquainted with the truth, and yet refused to improve his opportunity, he will be among the number of whom Christ said, “Ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.” Those who deliberately place themselves where they will not have an opportunity of hearing the truth, will be reckoned among those who have heard the truth, and persistently resisted its evidences (The Review and Herald, April 25, 1893). 5BC 1145.3Read in context »
Why do we turn from divine wisdom to human wisdom? God sees the dishonor we do Him. He knows that in humanity we shall find no solace for our woe, and He pities us because we are so needy, yet so unwilling to make Him our confidant, our burden-bearer. He sees human beings slighting the love and mercy provided for them, and He says sadly, “Ye will not come to me, that ye might have life” (John 5:40). TDG 23.4Read in context »