Be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves—Matt. 10: 16.
Oh, that all the Lord's dear people could learn the value of wisdom in connection with their endeavors to serve the Truth! Our Lord not only taught us to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves, but He exemplified this lesson in His own course, saying on another occasion to the Apostles, "I have many things to tell you, but ye cannot bear them now." We, too, should learn that there are opportune and inopportune times for mentioning certain truths, and that there are wise and unwise methods of presenting them. It is not enough that we do not speak untruths; it is not enough that we speak the truth; additionally we should see to it that we speak the truth in love, and love that is trained uses wisdom that it may accomplish more good.
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To have the serpent's wisdom and the dove's harmlessness means to possess a combination of tact and guilelessness. This combination is necessary in a herald of the Kingdom coming with a beneficent message, and mingling with people who generally misunderstand, sometimes pervert and not infrequently persecute. These qualities should be balanced and blended. Our tact should not be hypocritical, nor should our guilelessness be tactless. The higher primary graces most of all contribute to this happy balance. Its effect is, gathering and edifying the Church, testifying to the world and co operating in overthrowing Satan's empire with a minimum of opposition.
Parallel passages: Luke 10: 3; Rom. 16: 19; Eph. 5: 15; 1Cor. 14: 20; Phil. 2: 15; 1Cor. 9: 19-23; 2Cor. 12: 6; Judg. 8: 1-3; 1Kings 3: 24-28; Acts 23: 6-10.
Questions: Have I this week blended tact and guilelessness? How? Why? With what results?
ONLY A LITTLE WHILE
ONLY a little while to walk with weary feet,
Only a little while the storms of life to meet,
Only a little while to tread the thorny way,
Only a little while, then comes the perfect day.
Only a little while to spread the truth abroad,
Only a little while to testify for God,
Only a little while, the time is fleeting fast,
Only a little while, earth's sorrows all are past.
Only a little while, then let us do our best,
Only a little while, then comes the promised rest.
Only a little while, oh, what a word is this!
Only a little while, then comes the perfect bliss.
Only a little while, then death shall be withdrawn,
Only a little while, then pain and tears are gone;
Only a little while, then by the Crystal Sea,
Only a little while, then we shall dwell with Thee.
Only a little while, Lord, let Thy Kingdom come!
Only a little while, Thy people sigh for home;
Only a little while, the City bring to sight,
Only a little while, come end earth's dreary night!
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