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“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus who…made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant” (Phil. 2:5-7)

How is anybody going to be faithful who cares particularly what people say about him, and has much respect for, or puts his dependence on, reputation? Thank the Lord, He has something a great deal better for us to depend on, and that is character. Let us not forget that Jesus, our example in this world, “made Himself of no reputation.”

The people who are to stand faithful to God in the world are to do it with respect to character only, and no question of reputation can come into calculation. Reputation will not save one. When all the power of the world stands against those who will maintain their allegiance to God, then the character of Jesus Christ is worth ten thousand reputations that anybody can manufacture.

But reputation is a big thing in the eyes of the world. A reputation is all that Satan has to offer. A statement often quoted is correct though. “The dearest treasure that mortal times afford is spotless reputation.” That was well enough for him, for reputation was all he had. He went on to say he had lost his: “O my reputation, O have lost it!” And when he had lost that, of course he had nothing to support him. He did not have character, but only reputation to depend on. The dearest treasure is spotless character; and the only spotless character is the character of Jesus Christ. And that character He gives to you and me, a free blessed gift from Him who made it.

Then let all questions of reputation go to the winds; that is where they belong. Reputation is as unstable as the winds, while character is fixed as eternity. Though Satan with all his power might succeed in saddling upon us the worst reputation he can invent, thank the Lord we have a character that will stand in the judgment.

Jones, General Conference Bulletin, 1893, pp. 124,125

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