Bible Pathways in Picture and Word

 The Narrow Way-Revival and Reformation

Enter ye in at the straight gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because straight is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.           Matthew 7:13,14

   Please remember that Heart reform-from the inside out is the most important

No mere external change is sufficient to bring us in to harmony with God.  There are many who try to reform by correcting this or that bad habit, and they hope in this way to become Christians but they are beginning in the wrong place.  Our first work is with the heart. ( Christ Object Lessons pg 97)

 To choose a specific topic please click on one of the following links     

   Heart Reform                                          Holidays                                        Dress Reform                                   Health,Temperance and Diet Reform    

         Country Living-Out of the cities                   Guarding the Senses                               Music Reform                                                      Entertainment Reform


A Snow Story Pathway 

One sunshiny day this winter, I decided to go and shovel a path out to the south corner of our property to catch all the rays of sun I could, and meanwhile get some exercise.  My husband was coming to help me as soon as he  finished another project.  Since it was of course cold outside, I decided to begin without him.  With determination I began to shovel as quickly as I could toward the corner.  I had made pretty good progress when I saw my husband come shooting down the driveway on a sled. 

 After coming to a stop, he said, "What are you doing?"

"I'm shoveling a path out to the corner," I answered matter of factly, hoping he would notice how much I had shoveled.  He promptly began shoveling down the driveway about 10 feet away.  Why dosen't he come over and help me? I thought to myself.

 "Well, your not going to get there that way, the path is down here." he stated, uncovering the little foot bridge with the corner of his shovel.

I knew better than to doubt his story, all the evidence was on his side and anybody that knows us knows I have no sense of direction, and he could draw you a diagram of every curve and  every pot hole in the road. 

Immediately, the spiritual lesson of this story came to me and I protested teasingly, "But I sincerely believed that the path was here, and furthermore I have spent a long time shoveling, the path can't be over there!"

Folks, it dosen't matter how sincere we are, if we are on the wrong path it will take us the wrong way.  We may have time and money invested in the wrong way, but a change is still necessary if we want to travel the narrow way.

 But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.  Proverbs 4:18

 

Hath the Lord as great delight  in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.  For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft and  stubborness is as iniquity and idolatry.          1 Samuel  15:22,23

 

And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.       Revelation 18:4

 

Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world.  If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.      1 John 2:15

 Every duty that calls for reform involves repentance, faith, and obedience. It means the uplifting of the soul to a new and nobler life. Thus every true reform has its place in the work of the third angel's message.                     Testimonies for the Church Vol. 6, pg. 110

Whoever turns from the light in one instance hardens his heart to disregard light upon other matters.  Whoever violates moral obligations in the matter of eating and dressing prepares the way to violate the claims of God in regard to eternal interests.  Our bodies are not our own.       Testimonies for the Church Vol. 3, pg 63

 

The Narrow Way Dream 

 I dreamed of being with a large body of people. A portion of this assembly started out prepared to journey. We had heavily loaded wagons. As we journeyed, the road seemed to ascend. On one side of this road was a deep precipice; on the other was a high, smooth, white wall, like the hard finish upon plastered rooms.    
     As we journeyed on, the road grew narrower and steeper. In some places it seemed so very narrow that we concluded that we could no longer travel with the loaded wagons. We then loosed them from the horses, took a portion of the luggage from the wagons and placed it upon the horses, and journeyed on horseback.   
     As we progressed, the path still continued to grow narrow. We were obliged to press close to the wall, to save ourselves from falling off the narrow road down the steep precipice. 

    As we did this, the luggage on the horses pressed against the wall and caused us to sway toward the precipice. We feared that we should fall and be dashed in pieces on the rocks. We then cut the luggage from the horses, and it fell over the precipice. We continued on horseback, greatly fearing, as we came to the narrower places in the road, that we should lose our balance and fall. At such times a hand seemed to take the bridle and guide us over the perilous way.  

    As the path grew more narrow, we decided that we could no longer go with safety on horseback, and we left the horses and went on foot, in single file, one following in the footsteps of another.   

    At this point small cords were let down from the top of the pure white wall; these we eagerly grasped, to aid us in keeping our balance upon the path. As we traveled, the cord moved along with us. The path finally became so narrow that we concluded that we could travel more safely without our shoes, so we slipped them from our feet and went on some distance without them. Soon it was decided that we could travel more safely without our stockings; these were removed, and we journeyed on with bare feet. We then thought of those who had not accustomed themselves to privations and hardships. Where were such now? They were not in the company. At every change some were left behind, and those only remained who had accustomed themselves to endure hardships. The privations of the way only made these more eager to press on to the end.    
     Our danger of falling from the pathway increased. We pressed close to the white wall, yet could not place our feet fully upon the path, for it was too narrow. We then suspended nearly our whole weight upon the cords, exclaiming: "We have hold from above! We have hold from above!" The same words were uttered by all the company in the narrow pathway. As we heard the sounds of mirth and revelry that seemed to come from the abyss below, we shuddered. We heard the profane oath, the vulgar jest, and low, vile songs. We heard the war song and the dance song. We heard instrumental music and loud laughter, mingled with cursing and cries of anguish and bitter wailing, and were more anxious than ever to keep upon the narrow, difficult pathway. Much of the time we were compelled to suspend our whole weight upon the cords, which increased in size as we progressed.    
     I noticed that the beautiful white wall was stained with blood. It caused a feeling of regret to see the wall thus stained. This feeling, however, lasted but for a moment, as I soon thought that it was all as it should be. Those who are following after will know that others have passed the narrow, difficult way before them, and will conclude that if others were able to pursue their onward course, they can do the same. And as the blood shall be pressed from their aching feet, they will not faint with discouragement; but, seeing the blood upon the wall, they will know that others have endured the same pain.   
     At length we came to a large chasm, at which our path ended. There was nothing now to guide the feet, nothing upon which to rest them. Our whole reliance must be upon the cords, which had increased in size until they were as large as our bodies. Here we were for a time thrown into perplexity and distress. We inquired in fearful whispers: "To what is the cord attached?" My husband was just before me. Large drops of sweat were falling from his brow, the veins in his neck and temples were increased to double their usual size, and suppressed, agonizing groans came from his lips. The sweat was dropping from my face, and I felt such anguish as I had never felt before. A fearful struggle was before us. Should we fail here, all the difficulties of our journey had been experienced for nought.    
     Before us, on the other side of the chasm, was a beautiful field of green grass, about six inches high. I could not see the sun; but bright, soft beams of light, resembling fine gold and silver, were resting upon this field. Nothing I had seen upon earth could compare in beauty and glory with this field. But could we succeed in reaching it? was the anxious inquiry. Should the cord break, we must perish. Again, in whispered anguish, the words were breathed: "What holds the cord?" For a moment we hesitated to venture. Then we exclaimed: "Our only hope is to trust wholly to the cord. It has been our dependence all the difficult way. It will not fail us now." Still we were hesitating and distressed. The words were then spoken: "God holds the cord. We need not fear." These words were then repeated by those behind us, accompanied with: "He will not fail us now. He has brought us thus far in safety."    
     My husband then swung himself over the fearful abyss into the beautiful field beyond. I immediately followed. And, oh, what a sense of relief and gratitude to God we felt! I heard voices raised in triumphant praise to God. I was happy, perfectly happy.    
     I awoke, and found that from the anxiety I had experienced in passing over the difficult route, every nerve in my body seemed to be in a tremor. This dream needs no comment. It made such an impression upon my mind that probably every item in it will be vivid before me while my memory shall continue.

                                                                                                                                  Testimonies for the Church vol. 2 p. 594

 

      There is an awesome cd with this dream narrated and mixed with beautiful music. I highly recommend it.

     It can be purchased at Shepherd's Call website. Click Here!

 

The Two Ways Vision

  At the Conference at Battle Creek, May 27, 1856, I was shown in vision some things that concern the church generally. The glory and majesty of God were made to pass before me. Said the angel: "He is terrible in His majesty, yet ye realize it not; terrible in His anger, yet ye offend Him daily. 'Strive to enter in at the strait gate;' 'for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.'" These roads are distinct, separate, in opposite directions. One leads to eternal life, the other to eternal death. I saw the distinction between these roads, also the distinction between the companies traveling them. The roads are opposite; one is broad and smooth, the other narrow and rugged. So the parties that travel them are opposite in character, in life, in dress, and in conversation.  

     Those who travel in the narrow way are talking of the joy and happiness they will have at the end of the journey. Their countenances are often sad, yet often beam with holy, sacred joy. They do not dress like the company in the broad road, nor talk like them, nor act like them. A pattern has been given them. A man of sorrows and acquainted  with grief opened that road for them, and traveled it Himself. His followers see His footsteps, and are comforted and cheered. He went through safely; so can they, if they follow in His footsteps.     

  In the broad road all are occupied with their persons, their dress, and the pleasures in the way. They indulge freely in hilarity and glee, and think not of their journey's end, of the certain destruction at the end of the path. Every day they approach nearer their destruction; yet they madly rush on faster and faster. Oh, how dreadful this looked to me!  

     I saw many traveling in this broad road who had the words written upon them: "Dead to the world. The end of all things is at hand. Be ye also ready." They looked just like all the vain ones around them, except a shade of sadness which I noticed upon their countenances. Their conversation was just like that of the gay, thoughtless ones around them; but they would occasionally point with great satisfaction to the letters on their garments, calling for the others to have the same upon theirs. They were in the broad way, yet they professed to be of the number who were traveling the narrow way. Those around them would say: "There is no distinction between us. We are alike; we dress, and talk, and act alike."  {1T 127,128} 

 

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Shall We Compromise? 

Have you ever heard someone give an excuse for their behavior by saying,

  "Well, it is OK to do such 'n' such here because everyone does this here."

                                  or

  "Things are different for different people and what applies for you doesn't really apply to me."

There are many excuses. These are only two of the common ones.

It was pointed out to me that this is what is known as "Situational Ethics."

Webster's dictionary defines this term as: "a system of ethics by which acts are judged within their contexts instead of by categorical principles."

The word Categorical: "Absolute, complete"

The word Principle: "a comprehensive and fundamental law or doctrine"

Yes, there are times when our method of reaching people needs to adapt to fit the person we are trying to reach - But we should NEVER lower our standards or principles.

   Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth [it] not, to him it is sin.  James 4:17

Your salvation depends on your acting from principle--serving God from principle, not from feeling, not from impulse.

                                                                                                                                        Testimonies for the Church vol. 1 p. 698 

Man's way is to devise and scheme; God implants a principle. Man is striving to make duty soft and accommodating to his own natural character. . . . Excuses are valueless. All circumstances, all appetites and passions, are to be servants to the God-fearing man, not rulers over him...We are not to be the servants of circumstances, but to control circumstances by an inwrought principle learned of the greatest Teacher the world ever knew.    Testimonies to Ministers p. 421