“Of late the question has repeatedly come to me, does it make any real difference whether we believe in the personality of God, as long as we believe in God? My answer invariably is, it depends altogether upon the standpoint from which we view it. If from the Spiritualist’s, the Christian Scientist’s, the Universalist’s, or if from the standpoint of any other “ist” or “ism,” it makes but little or no difference. But the standpoint of Seventh-day Adventists it makes all the difference in the world. “No man who is a Seventh-day Adventist can understandingly take that position; neither can a Seventh-day Adventist hold that position for a moment. In it is involved a denial of the ” Father and the Son,” the law of Moses, the prophets, the psalms, the holy angels, the personality of the devil, and all that is according to sound doctrine.”
Second: At the creation God said to Christ, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.” Gen. 1: 26, 27. Man bore the image of God both morally and physically; for after man sinned, we read that Adam “begat a son in his own likeness, after his image; and called his name Seth.” Gen. 5: 3. Here is an explanation of the words “image” and “likeness.” As Seth bore both the physical and the moral nature of Adam, so Adam bore the physical and the moral likeness of God.
Neither was this image of God which man bore a mere concept; for the Bible declares that the Lord has parts, the same as the human body. For instance, the prophet says his “garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool.” Dan. 7:9. The psalmist declares, “His eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men.” Ps. 11: 4; 2 Chron. 16: 9
As surely as fallen humanity has borne the physical image of the first pair which God created, so surely do God and Christ have a form, hence a personality. When Christ came to this earth, and took sinful nature upon him, although sinless himself, he bore the physical image of all mankind; and of him God said, ” In him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.” Col. 2:9. And again we read, “God hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son. Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person.” Heb. 1: 1-3. I do not know what language could make this thought plain. See also I Cor. 15: 45-49; Luke 24: 13-40. Are these scriptures meaningless? Are they intended to deceive? Daniel taught Nebuchadnezzar that Christ had a form before he came to this earth, or how could the king have said, “Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and thev have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God”? Dan 3:24, 25. He recognized him as having as having a form like men.
Daniel also taught the ministration of angels, or how could the king have said, “Who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him”? Dan.3:25-28. Are the wise philosophers of the twentieth century filled with greater wisdom than were those pious men who taught the personality of God, Christ, and angels? Angels ate and drank with Abraham, and in the person of travelers they have appeared to mankind many times since. For a further description of the personality of Christ, see Daniel 10 and Revelation 1.
“Third. God said to Moses, ” Let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them.” Ex. 25: 8. He could not dwell among Israel unless they built him a sanctuary. They had been in Egypt, where, in common with the Hindus, the belief was entertained that God was in cats and dogs, in cattle, in the Nile that flowed, and in everything that had life. It was the old mystic and pantheistic notion. They reasoned that God the author of life, and as his life was in all these things, so all the God there was pervaded all nature, both animate and inanimate; that there was no personal God in the heavens, but that God was everywhere, and nowhere in particular. Now to impress the minds of his people that he was a person, and had a dwelling place, and that this dwelling place was in heaven, and that their salvation depended upon their believing this, God said, “Let them make me a sanctuary; that may dwell among them.” So about one year was occupied in building the sanctuary in the wilderness, with special instruction that it should be made according to the pattern shown in the mount. By this they learned that God has a sanctuary in the heavens, and in it there is a personal being. The sanctuary on the earth was the pattern, or figure, of the heavenly. Every ceremony in the law of Moses contained salvation, or prefigured some essential truth fulfilled in the gospel.”
“Again: “The Lord hath prepared his is throne in the heavens; and his kingdom if ruleth over all.” Ps. 103:19. Jeremiah says, “A, glorious high throne from the beginning is the place of our, sanctuary.” Jer.17: 12. If God has no personality, there is no sanctuary in heaven, for God dwells in it; there are no angels, for they, compose his throne; there is no Satan, for he is a fallen angel, and was cast out of heaven (John 12:31; Luke 10: 18); the Bible is a myth, and bears false testimony, because it declares all this.”
“Therefore we repeat what we previously said, to deny the personality of God, is to deny the existence of the sanctuary in the heavens; for there God dwells. It is to deny the existence of the angels; for they are his throne. It is to deny the law of God; for it is the foundation of his throne. It is to deny the existence of Satan; for he is a fallen angel. It makes the light and life which God created, and which proceeds from him, whether it be in the grass or in cats or dogs or in man kind, to be the god. Since man, however, is the highest form of light and life, he necessarily becomes the supreme deity. It leads men to worship the creature more than the Creator. We lift a warning voice against any such doctrine, from whatever source it comes. We say the Bible, and the Bible only, shall be our creed. In it is salvation.
“Years ago while in Tasmania there was a woman lecturer who spoke against God and the Bible. A large number of young men in the city of Hobart became infatuated with her teaching. Some bemoaned that they had not such men as Hastings or Talmage of America to meet such blasphemy. At the close of one of the lectures the shrill voice of a woman, possibly at the age of seventy-five, attracted the audience before they dispersed. She pressed her way to the platform, and pointing her bony finger at the speaker, spoke, substantially, as follows-. “I have lived threescore and ten years. God has removed my husband, and one child after another, until I am alone in this dark world. But God has sustained me! The hope of the future world has cheered me. Now you have taken away my God, and my hope, and what do you give me in his place? ” Several times she repeated, ” What do you give me in his place? ” Here was an argument the blasphemer could not meet. Sinking into her chair, she said: “If you have a Christian’s hope, you had better keep it.” So we would say to those whose hair has whitened in the third angel’s message, as well as others who have more recently embraced the truth, those whom death has robbed of wives, of husbands, of children, of fathers and mothers, who have fallen asleep in the hope of the soon-corning King, as revealed in the Word of God; We point you to the heavenly sanctuary, to a faithful and merciful High Priest standing before the ark of God, who dwelleth between the cherubim. “We have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” We were never of better courage; never did the light shine more clear and bright as we find ourselves amid the shoals and rocks in the harbor, just as the old ship is entering into Port. God has never failed his people, and he will not do it now. Have courage, my brethren, have courage in the Lord. Hold fast to the main pillars of truth, and we shall soon meet around the throne of God, where we shall all see him face to face.” (RH, 8-10-1903)