He spake within himself - Thought.
If he were a prophet - The word “prophet” here means, not one who predicts future events, but one who knows the hearts of people. If Jesus had been sent from God as a prophet, he supposed that he would have known the character of the woman and would have rebuked her.
Would have known - Because Jesus did not rebuke her and drive her from his presence, he inferred that he could not be acquainted with her character. The Pharisees considered it improper to hold communion with those who were notorious sinners. They judged our Saviour by their own rules, and supposed that “he” would act in the same way; and Simon therefore concluded that he did not know her character and could not be a prophet. Jesus did not refuse the society of the guilty. He came to save the lost; and no person ever came to him so sure of finding a “friend,” as those who came conscious that they were deeply depraved, and mourning on account of their crimes.
That toucheth him - The “touch” of a Gentile, or a person singularly wicked, they supposed to be polluting, and the Pharisees avoided it. See Matthew 9:11.
“Take heed that ye do not your alms before men to be seen of them.” Some think this text teaches that they must be secret in their works of charity. And they do but very little, excusing themselves, because they do not know just how to give. But Jesus explained it to his disciples as follows: “Therefore, when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee as the hypocrites do, in the synagogues, and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward.” They gave to be regarded noble and generous by men. They received praise of men, and Jesus taught his disciples that it was all the reward they would have. With many, the left hand does not know what the right hand does, for the right hand does nothing worthy of the notice of the left hand. This lesson of Jesus to his disciples was to rebuke those who wished to receive glory of men. They performed their alms-giving upon some very public gathering; and before doing this, a public proclamation was made of their generosity before the people, and many gave large sums merely to have their names exalted by men. And the means given in this manner was often extorted from others by oppressing the hireling in his wages, and grinding the face of the poor. 2SG 234.1
Then I was shown that this scripture does not apply to those who have the cause of God at heart, and use their means humbly to advance it. I was directed to these texts: “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” “By their fruits ye shall know them.” I was shown that scripture testimony will harmonize, when it is rightly understood. The good works of the children of God are the most effectual preaching the unbeliever has. He thinks there must be strong motives that actuate the christian to deny self, and with his possessions, try to save his fellow man. It is unlike the spirit of the world. Such fruits testify that they are genuine Christians. They seem to be constantly reaching upward to a treasure that is imperishable. 2SG 234.2
In every gift and offering there should be a suitable object before the giver—not to uphold any in idleness—not to be seen of men or to get a great name—but to glorify God by advancing his cause. Some make large donations to the cause of God, but their brother who is poor may be suffering close by them, and they do nothing to relieve him. Little acts of kindness imparted to their brother in a secret manner would bind their hearts together, and would be noticed in heaven. I saw that the rich should make a difference in their prices and their wages to the afflicted and widows, and the worthy poor among them. But I saw it was too often the case that the poor were taken advantage of, and the rich reap the advantage, if there is any to be gained, and the last penny is exacted for every favor. It is all written in heaven. “I know thy works.” 2SG 235.1Read in context »
In all that Christ said to His disciples, there was something with which, in heart, Judas disagreed. Under his influence the leaven of disaffection was fast doing its work. The disciples did not see the real agency in all this; but Jesus saw that Satan was communicating his attributes to Judas, and thus opening up a channel through which to influence the other disciples. This, a year before the betrayal, Christ declared. “Have not I chosen you twelve,” He said, “and one of you is a devil?” John 6:70. DA 720.1
Yet Judas made no open opposition, nor seemed to question the Saviour's lessons. He made no outward murmur until the time of the feast in Simon's house. When Mary anointed the Saviour's feet, Judas manifested his covetous disposition. At the reproof from Jesus his very spirit seemed turned to gall. Wounded pride and desire for revenge broke down the barriers, and the greed so long indulged held him in control. This will be the experience of everyone who persists in tampering with sin. The elements of depravity that are not resisted and overcome, respond to Satan's temptation, and the soul is led captive at his will. DA 720.2
But Judas was not yet wholly hardened. Even after he had twice pledged himself to betray the Saviour, there was opportunity for repentance. At the Passover supper Jesus proved His divinity by revealing the traitor's purpose. He tenderly included Judas in the ministry to the disciples. But the last appeal of love was unheeded. Then the case of Judas was decided, and the feet that Jesus had washed went forth to the betrayer's work. DA 720.3Read in context »
There is no example given in the Word for brethren to wash sisters’ feet; [see Appendix.] but there is an example for sisters to wash the feet of brethren. Mary washed the feet of Jesus with her tears, and wiped them with the hair of her head. (See also 1 Timothy 5:10.) I saw that the Lord had moved upon sisters to wash the feet of brethren and that it was according to gospel order. All should move understandingly and not make the washing of feet a tedious ceremony. EW 117.1
The holy salutation mentioned in the gospel of Jesus Christ by the apostle Paul should ever be considered in its true character. It is a holy kiss. [see Appendix.] It should be regarded as a sign of fellowship to Christian friends when parting, and when meeting again after a separation of weeks or months. In 1 Thessalonians 5:26 Paul says: “Greet all the brethren with an holy kiss.” In the same chapter he says: “Abstain from all appearance of evil.” There can be no appearance of evil when the holy kiss is given at a proper time and place. EW 117.2
I saw that the strong hand of the enemy is set against the work of God, and the help and strength of everyone who loves the cause of truth should be enlisted; great interest should be manifested by them to uphold the hands of those who advocate the truth, that by steady watchcare they may shut out the enemy. All should stand as one, united in the work. Every energy of the soul should be awake, for what is done must be done quickly. EW 117.3Read in context »
The harvest is a reproduction of the seed sown. Every seed yields fruit after its kind. So it is with the traits of character we cherish. Selfishness, self-love, self-esteem, self-indulgence, reproduce themselves, and the end is wretchedness and ruin. “He that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” Galatians 6:8. Love, sympathy, and kindness yield fruitage of blessing, a harvest that is imperishable. Ed 109.1
In the harvest the seed is multiplied. A single grain of wheat, increased by repeated sowings, would cover a whole land with golden sheaves. So widespread may be the influence of a single life, of even a single act. Ed 109.2
What deeds of love the memory of that alabaster box broken for Christ's anointing has through the long centuries prompted! What countless gifts that contribution, by a poor unnamed widow, of “two mites, which make a farthing” (Mark 12:42), has brought to the Saviour's cause! Ed 109.3Read in context »
Missionary nurses are best qualified for this work; but others should be connected with them. These, although not specially educated and trained in nursing, can learn from their fellow workers the best manner of labor. 6T 84.1
Talk, pharisaism, and self-praise are abundant; but these will never win souls to Christ. Pure, sanctified love, such love as was expressed in Christ's lifework, is as a sacred perfume. Like Mary's broken box of ointment, it fills the whole house with fragrance. Eloquence, knowledge of truth, rare talents, mingled with love, are all precious endowments. But ability alone, the choicest talents alone, cannot take the place of love. 6T 84.2
This love must be manifested by God's workers. Love for God and for those for whom Christ has died will do a work that we can scarcely comprehend. Those who do not cherish and cultivate this love cannot be successful missionaries. 6T 84.3Read in context »