Rouse People to Preparation. --We are living in the close of this earth's history. . . . Prophecy is fulfilling. Soon Christ will come with power and great glory. We have no time to lose. Let the message sound forth in earnest words of warning.
We must persuade men everywhere to repent and flee from the wrath to come. They have souls to save or to lose. Let there be no indifference in this matter. The Lord calls for workers who are filled with an earnest, decided purpose. Tell the people to be instant in season and out of season. With the words of life upon your lips go forth to tell men and women that the end of all things is at hand.
Let us keep our souls in the love of God. The note of warning must be given. The truth must not languish upon our lips. We must rouse people to immediate preparation, for we little know what is before us. My faith is as strong as ever that we are living in the last remnant of time. Let every teacher present an open door before all who will come to Jesus, repenting of their sins.-- Letter 105, 1903.
Proclaim It in Every Land. --I have been instructed to trace words of warning for our brethren and sisters who are in danger of losing sight of the special work for this time. . . . In every land we are to herald the
second coming of Christ, in the language of the revelator proclaiming: "Behold, He cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see Him."-- Testimonies, vol. 8, p. 116. (1904)
The time has come when the message of Christ's soon coming is to sound throughout the world.-- Testimonies, vol. 9, p. 24. (1909)
Message, "The Lord Is Coming." --The Lord is coming. Lift up your heads and rejoice. Oh, we would think that those who hear the joyful news, who claim to love Jesus, would be filled with joy unutterable and full of glory. This is the good, the joyful news which should electrify every soul, which should be repeated in our homes, and told to those whom we meet on the street. What more joyful news can be communicated! . . .
The voice of the true watchman needs now to be heard all along the line, "The morning cometh, and also the night." The trumpet must give a certain sound, for we are in the great day of the Lord's preparation.-- Letter 55, 1886.
No Time to Lose. --Sound an alarm through the land. Tell the people that the day of the Lord is near, and hasteth greatly. Let none be left unwarned. We might have been in the place of the poor souls who are in error. According to the truth that we have received above others, we are debtors to impart the same to them.
We have no time to lose. The powers of darkness are working with intense energy, and with stealthy tread Satan is advancing to take those who are now asleep, as a wolf taking his prey. We have warnings now which we may give, a work now which we may do, but soon it will be more difficult than we imagine. . . .
The coming of the Lord is nearer than when we first believed. The great controversy is nearing its end. Every report of calamity by sea or land is a testimony to the fact that the end of all things is at hand. Wars and rumours of wars declare it. Is there a Christian whose pulse does not beat with quickened action as he anticipates the great events opening before us?
The Lord is coming. We hear the footsteps of an approaching God, as He comes to punish the world for its iniquity. We are to prepare the way for Him by acting our part in getting a people ready for that great day.-- Review and Herald, Nov. 12, 1914.
Living Power Must Attend Message. --Living power must attend the message of Christ's second appearing. We must not rest until we see many souls converted to the blessed hope of the Lord's return. In the days of the apostles the message that they bore wrought a real work, turning souls from idols to serve the living God. The work to be done today is just as real, and the truth is just as much truth; only we are to give the message with as much more earnestness as the coming of the Lord is nearer. The message for this time is positive, simple, and of the deepest importance. We must act like men and women who believe it. Waiting, watching, working, praying, warning the world--this is our work. . . .
All heaven is astir, engaged in preparing for the day of God's vengeance, the day of Zion's deliverance. The time of tarrying is almost ended. The pilgrims and strangers who have so long been seeking a better country are almost home. I feel as if I must cry aloud, Homeward bound! Rapidly we are nearing the time when Christ will come to gather His redeemed to Himself.-- Review and Herald, Nov. 13, 1913.
All Discourses in Light of Christ's Coming. --The truths of prophecy are bound up together, and as we study them, they form a beautiful cluster of practical Christian truth. All the discourses that we give are plainly to reveal that we are waiting, working, and praying for the coming of the Son of God. His coming is our hope. This hope is to be bound up with all our words and works, with all our associations and relationships.-- Letter 150, 1902.
Key to History. --An understanding of the hope of Christ's second coming is the key that unlocks all the history that follows, and explains all the future lessons. -- Letter 218, 1906.
Effect of Preaching the Second Advent. --The second coming of the Son of man is to be the wonderful theme kept before the people. Here is a subject that should not be left out of our discourses. Eternal realities must be kept before the mind's eye, and the attractions of the world will appear as they are, altogether profitless as vanity. What are we to do with the world's vanities, its praises, its riches, its honours, or its enjoyments?
We are pilgrims and strangers who are waiting, hoping, and praying for that blessed hope, the glorious appearing of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. If we believe this and bring it into our practical life, what vigorous action would this faith and hope inspire; what fervent love one for another; what careful holy living for the glory of God; and in our respect for the recompense of the reward, what distinct lines of demarcation would be evidenced between us and the world.-- Manuscript 39, 1893.
Keep It Before the People. --The truth that Christ is coming should be kept before every mind.-- Letter 131, 1900.
221 A Caution Against Time-Setting Expressions. --The times and seasons God has put in His own power. And why has not God given us this knowledge?-- Because we would not make a right use of it if He did. A condition of things would result from this knowledge among our people that would greatly retard the work of God in preparing a people to stand in the great day that is to come. We are not to be engrossed with speculations in regard to the times and the seasons which God has not revealed. Jesus has told His disciples to "watch," but not for definite time. His followers are to be in the position of those who are listening for the orders of their Captain; they are to watch, wait, pray, and work, as they approach the time for the coming of the Lord; but no one will be able to predict just when that time will come; for "of that day and hour knoweth no man." You will not be able to say that He will come in one, two, or five years, neither are you to put off His coming by stating that it may not be for ten or twenty years. . . . We are not to know the definite time either for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit or for the coming of Christ.-- Review and Herald, March 22, 1892.
The Sanctuary Truth
The Foundation of Our Faith. --The correct understanding of the ministration in the heavenly sanctuary is the foundation of our faith.-- Letter 208, 1906.
The Centre of Christ's Atoning Work. -The subject of the sanctuary and the investigative judgement should be clearly understood by the people of God. All need a knowledge for themselves of the position
and work of their great High Priest. Otherwise, it will be impossible for them to exercise the faith which is essential at this time, or to occupy the position which God designs them to fill. Every individual has a soul to save or to lose. Each has a case pending at the bar of God. Each must meet the great Judge face to face. How important, then, that every mind contemplate often the solemn scene when the judgement shall sit and the books shall be opened, when, with Daniel, every individual must stand in his lot, at the end of the days.
All who have received the light upon these subjects are to bear testimony of the great truths which God has committed to them. The sanctuary in heaven is the very centre of Christ's work in behalf of men. It concerns every soul living upon the earth. It opens to view the plan of redemption, bringing us down to the very close of time, and revealing the triumphant issue of the contest between righteousness and sin. It is of the utmost importance that all should thoroughly investigate these subjects, and be able to give an answer to every one that asketh them a reason of the hope that is in them.-- The Great Controversy, pp. 488, 489. (1888)
The Key to a Complete System of Truth. --The subject of the sanctuary was the key which unlocked the mystery of the disappointment of 1844. It opened to view a complete system of truth, connected and harmonious, showing that God's hand had directed the great advent movement, and revealing present duty as it brought to light the position and work of His people.-- The Great Controversy, p. 423, (1888)
Eyes Fixed on Sanctuary. --As a people, we should be earnest students of prophecy; we should not rest until we become intelligent in regard to the subject
of the sanctuary, which is brought out in the visions of Daniel and John. This subject sheds great light on our present position and work, and gives us unmistakable proof that God has led us in our past experience. It explains our disappointment in 1844, showing us that the sanctuary to be cleansed was not the earth, as we had supposed, but that Christ then entered into the most holy apartment of the heavenly sanctuary, and is there performing the closing work of His priestly office, in fulfilment of the words of the angel to the prophet Daniel, "Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed."
Our faith in reference to the messages of the first, second, and third angels was correct. The great waymarks we have passed are immovable. Although the hosts of hell may try to tear them from their foundation, and triumph in the thought that they have succeeded, yet they do not succeed. These pillars of truth stand firm as the eternal hills, unmoved by all the efforts of men combined with those of Satan and his host. We can learn much, and should be constantly searching the Scriptures to see if these things are so. God's people are now to have their eyes fixed on the heavenly sanctuary, where the final ministration of our great High Priest in the work of the judgement is going forward,--where He is interceding for His people.-- Review and Herald, Nov. 27, 1883.
The Central Truth in a Simple Theology. --In every school established the most simple theory of theology should be taught. In this theory, the atonement of Christ should be the great substance, the central truth. The wonderful theme of redemption should be presented to the students.-- Manuscript 156, 1898.
Seriousness of Sanctuary Truth. --While Christ is cleansing the sanctuary, the worshippers on earth should carefully review their life, and compare their character with the standard of righteousness.-- Review and Herald, April 8, 1890.
Preaching the Sanctuary Doctrine Endorsed by Holy Spirit. --For more than half a century the different points of present truth have been questioned and opposed. New theories have been advanced as truth, which were not truth, and the Spirit of God revealed their error. As the great pillars of our faith have been presented, the Holy Spirit has borne witness to them, and especially is this so regarding the truths of the sanctuary question. Over and over again the Holy Spirit has in a marked manner endorsed the preaching of this doctrine. But today, as in the past, some will be led to form new theories and to deny the truths upon which the Spirit of God has placed His approval.-- Manuscript 125, 1907.
False Theories Regarding the Sanctuary. --In the future, deception of every kind is to arise, and we want solid ground for our feet. We want solid pillars for the building. Not one pin is to be removed from that which the Lord has established. The enemy will bring in false theories, such as the doctrine that there is no sanctuary. This is one of the points on which there will be a departing from the faith. Where shall we find safety unless it be in the truths that the Lord has been giving for the last fifty years?- Review and Herald, May 25, 1905.
Contest Over Distinguishing Truth. --The time is near when the deceptive powers of satanic agencies will be fully developed. On one side is Christ, who has been given all power in heaven and earth. On the other side is Satan, continually exercising his
power to allure, to deceive with strong, spiritualistic sophistries, to remove God out of the places that He should occupy in the minds of men.
Satan is striving continually to bring in fanciful suppositions in regard to the sanctuary, degrading the wonderful representations of God and the ministry of Christ for our salvation into something that suits the carnal mind. He removes its presiding power from the hearts of believers, and supplies its place with fantastic theories invented to make void the truths of the atonement, and destroy our confidence in the doctrines which we have held sacred since the third angel's message was first given. Thus he would rob us of our faith in the very message that has made us a separate people, and has given character and power to our work.-- Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 7, p. 17. (1905)
Presenting the Law and the Sabbath
Our Special Message. --The Lord has a special message for His ambassadors to bear. They are to give the people the warning, calling upon them to repair the breach that has been made by the Papacy in the law of God. The Sabbath has been made a nonentity, an unessential requirement, which human authority can set aside. The holy day of the Lord has been changed to a common working day. Men have torn down God's memorial, placing a false rest day in its stead.-- Manuscript 35, 1900.
The Last Message to the World. --The last message of warning to the world is to lead men to see the importance that God attaches to His law. So plainly
is the truth to be presented that no transgressor, hearing it, shall be excusable in failing to discern the importance of obedience to God's commands.
I am instructed to say, Gather from the Scriptures the proofs that God has sanctified the seventh day, and let these proofs be read before the congregation. Let those who have not heard the truth be shown that all who turn aside from a plain "Thus saith the Lord," must suffer the result of their course. In all ages the Sabbath has been the test of loyalty to God. "It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever," the Lord declares.-- Gospel Workers, pp. 148, 149. (1915)
The Deciding Question for Whole World. --The light concerning the binding claims of the law of God is to be presented everywhere. This is to be a deciding question. It will test and prove the world.-- Special Testimonies, Series A, No. 7, pp. 17, 18. (1874)
The Build-up in New Fields. --I have had to break off writing to have an interview with Brother _____. He is in some perplexity. . . . He wished to know how to present the truth in entering new fields, whether the Sabbath should be presented first.
I told him that the best and wisest plan would be to dwell upon subjects that would arouse the conscience. He could talk to them upon practical godliness; devotion and piety; and present the self-denial, self-sacrificing life of Jesus as our example until they will see the contrast in their self-indulgent life, and become dissatisfied with their unchristian lives.
Then present to them the prophecies; show them the purity and binding claims of the Word of God. Not one jot or tittle of this law is to lose its force, but hold its binding claims on every soul to the end of time. When the law of God is made void; when
the Christian world is joined to the Catholic and the worldly, in making of none effect the commandments of God, then God's chosen people arise to defend the law of Jehovah.
This is the guile that Paul used; this is the wisdom of the serpent; the harmlessness of the dove. When we come to a community that is acquainted with our faith, this cautious course need not to be pursued, but in every case special efforts should be made to come close to hearts by personal efforts. Avoid running down the churches; do not let the people receive the idea that your work is to tear down, but to build up, and to present the truth as it is in Jesus. Dwell much upon the necessity of vital godliness.-- Letter 2, 1885.
Broaching the Sabbath in New Fields. --The message of truth is new and startling to the people of this country [Australia]. The Bible doctrines presented are as a new revelation, and they really look upon the sentiments advanced as infidelity. In presenting the Sunday question, or the union of church and state, handle it carefully. It will not answer to present the strong positions that have been and will of necessity be presented in America
These subjects must be broached guardedly. We have not as yet obtained standing place in this country. The enemy of all righteousness has been and still is working by every device he can invent to hinder the work that ought to be done in enlightening and educating the people; his forces are increasing. Delays have been giving Satan advantage of the situation, and these delays have caused the loss of many souls. The Lord is not pleased with the retarding of the work. Every delay renders more difficult the work that must be done, because advantage is given for
Satan to preoccupy the field, and prepare for determined resistance.
The tardy movements of our people in raising the standard in our large cities are not in harmony with the light given of God. A glimmering of light has been shining in the cities, but just enough to make the false shepherds feel that it is time for them to be actively at work in presenting fables and falsehoods to turn the people away from the message of truth. Some little effort has been made, but men and money are not furnished to do the work. Satan has worked and will work with his lying wonders, and strong delusions will be accepted where the banner of truth should have been uplifted. Now the fact that God's people that know the truth have failed to do their duty according to the light given in the Word of God, makes it a necessity for us to be more guarded, lest we offend unbelievers before they have heard the reasons of our faith in regard to the Sabbath and Sunday. . . .
There is need now to give to the people patient, kind instruction; the education of a lifetime is not to be readily counteracted; great tact and patient effort are needed by those who shall present the truth in any manner.-- Undated Manuscript 79.
Defer Its Presentation. --You should not feel it your duty to introduce arguments upon the Sabbath question as you meet the people. If persons mention the subject, tell them that this is not your burden now. But when they surrender heart and mind and will to God, they are then prepared candidly to weigh evidence in regard to these solemn, testing truths.-- Letter 77, 1895.
Caution Against Undue Delay. --Caution is needed; but while some of the workers are guarded, and make
haste slowly, if there are not united with them in the work those who see the necessity of being aggressive, very much will be lost; opportunities will pass, and the opening providence of God will not be discerned.
When persons who are under conviction are not brought to make a decision at the earliest period possible, there is danger that the conviction will gradually wear away. . . .
Frequently when a congregation is at the very point where the heart is prepared for the Sabbath question, it is delayed through fear of the consequences. This has been done, and the result has not been good.-- Letter 31, 1892.
In a Brief Campaign. --When you have a congregation before you for only two weeks, do not defer the presentation of the Sabbath question until everything else is presented, supposing that you thus pave the way for it. Lift up the standard, the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus. Make this the important theme. Then, by your strong arguments, make it of still greater force. Dwell more on the Revelation. Read, explain, and enforce its teaching.
Our warfare is aggressive. Tremendous issues are before us, yea, and right upon us. Let our prayers ascend to God that the four angels may still hold the four winds, that they may not blow to injure or destroy until the last warning has been given to the world. Then let us work in harmony with our prayers. Let nothing lessen the force of the truth for this time. The present truth is to be our burden. The third angel's message must do its work of separating from the churches a people who will take their stand on the platform of eternal truth.-- Testimonies, vol. 6, p. 61 (1900)
Life and Death Message. --We are as a people in danger of giving the third angel's message in such an indefinite manner that it does not impress the people. . . . Our message is a life-and-death message, and we must let this message appear as it is,--the great power of God. Then the Lord will make it effectual. We are to present it in all its telling force.-- Letter 209, 1899.
Message Not Muffled. --Satan has devised a state of things whereby the proclamation of the third angel's message shall be bound about. We must beware of his plans and methods. There must be no toning down of the truth, no muffling of the message for this time. The third angel's message must be strengthened and confirmed. The eighteenth chapter of Revelation reveals the importance of presenting the truth in no measured terms but with boldness and power.... There has been too much beating about the bush in the proclamation of the third angel's message. The message has not been given as clearly and distinctly as it should have been.-- Manuscript 16, 1900.
As Christ Presented the Law. --Christ presented the principles of the law of God in a direct, forcible way, showing His hearers that they had neglected to carry out these principles. His words were so definite and pointed that the listeners found no opportunity to cavil or raise objections.-- Review and Herald, Sept. 13, 1906.
Paul Adapted His Methods. --To the Gentiles, he [Paul] preached Christ as their only hope of salvation, but did not at first have anything definite to say upon the law. But after their hearts were warmed with the presentation of Christ as the gift of God to our world, and what was comprehended in the work of the Redeemer in the costly sacrifice to manifest the love of
God to man, in the most eloquent simplicity he showed that love for all mankind--Jew and Gentile--that they might be saved by surrendering their hearts to Him. Thus when, melted and subdued, they gave themselves to the Lord, he presented the law of God as the test of their obedience. This was the manner of his working--adapting his methods to win souls.-- Special Testimonies, Series A, No. 6, p. 55. (1895)
First the Fundamental Principles. --Do not make prominent those features of the message which are a condemnation of the customs and practices of the people, until they have opportunity to know that we are believers in Christ, that we believe in His divinity and in His pre-existence. Let the testimony of the world's Redeemer be dwelt upon.-- Testimonies, vol. 6, p. 58. (1900)
We Preach the Gospel. --Let the outsiders understand that we preach the gospel as well as the law, and they will feast upon these truths, and many will take their stand for the truth.-- Letter 1, 1889.
Will Convict of Sin. --The law and the gospel, revealed in the Word, are to be preached to the people; for the law and the gospel, blended, will convict of sin. God's law, while condemning sin, points to the gospel, revealing Jesus Christ, in whom "dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily." The glory of the gospel reflects light upon the Jewish age, giving significance to the whole Jewish economy of types and shadows. Thus both the law and the gospel are blended. In no discourse are they to be divorced.-- Manuscript 21, 1891.
The religionist generally has divorced the law and the gospel, while we have on the other hand almost done the same from another standpoint. We have not held up before the people the righteousness of Christ
and the full significance of His great plan of redemption. We have left out Christ and His matchless love, and brought in the theories and reasonings, preached arguments.-- Manuscript 24, 1890.
They Go Hand in Hand. --If we would have the spirit and power of the third angel's message, we must present the law and the gospel together, for they go hand in hand.-- Gospel Workers, p. 161. (1915)
Reinforce the Message With Literature. --The days in which we live are times that call for constant vigilance, times in which God's people should be awake to do a great work in presenting the light on the Sabbath question. . . . This last warning to the inhabitants of the earth is to make men see the importance God attaches to His holy law. So plainly is the truth to be presented that no transgressor, hearing it, shall fail to discern the importance of obedience to the Sabbath commandment. . . .
There is work for all to do in order that the simple truths of the Word of God may be made known. The words of Scripture should be printed and published just as they read. It would be well if the nineteenth and the greater portion of the twentieth chapters of Exodus, with verses twelve to eighteen of the thirty-first chapter, were printed just as they stand. Crowd these truths into small books and pamphlets, and let the word of God speak to the people. When a discourse concerning the law is preached that is right to the point, if you have any means of doing so, get it into a printed leaflet. Then when those who plead for Sunday laws meet you, place these leaflets in their hands. Tell them that you have no discussion over the Sunday question, for you have a plain "Thus saith the Lord" for the keeping of the seventh day.-- Review and Herald, March 26, 1908.
Make the Distinguishing Mark Prominent. --We are to give to the world a manifestation of the pure, noble, holy principles that are to distinguish the people of God from the world. Instead of the people of God becoming less and less definitely distinguished from those who do not keep the seventh-day Sabbath, they are to make the observance of the Sabbath so prominent that the world cannot fail to recognise them as Seventh-day Adventist.-- Manuscript 162, 1903.
Called to Expose Man of Sin. --In the very time in which we live the Lord has called His people and has given them a message to bear. He has called them to expose the wickedness of the man of sin who has made the Sunday law a distinctive power, who has thought to change times and laws, and to oppress the people of God who stand firmly to honour Him by keeping the only true Sabbath, the Sabbath of creation, as holy unto the Lord.-- Testimonies to Ministers, p. 118. (1903)
A Distinct People With a Testing Message. --The Lord has been pleased to give His people the third angel's message as a testing message to bear to the world. John beholds a people distinct and separate from the world, who refuse to worship the beast or his image, who bear God's sign, keeping holy His Sabbath--the seventh-day to be kept holy as a memorial of the living God, the Creator of heaven and earth. Of them the apostle writes, "Here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus."-- Letter 98, 1900.
The Mark of the Beast. --When Sunday observance shall be enforced by law, and the world shall be enlightened concerning the obligation of the true Sabbath, then whoever shall transgress the command of
God, to obey a precept which has no higher authority than that of Rome, will thereby honour popery above God. He is paying homage to Rome, and to the power which enforces the institution ordained by Rome. He is worshipping the beast and his image. As men then reject the institution which God has declared to be the sign of His authority, and honour in its stead that which Rome has chosen as the token of her supremacy, they will thereby accept the sign of allegiance to Rome,--"the mark of the beast." And it is not until the issue is thus plainly set before the people, and they are brought to choose between the commandments of God and the commandments of men, that those who continue in transgression will receive "the mark of the beast."-- The Great Controversy, p. 449. (1888)
Reception of Mark of the Beast Future. --The change of the Sabbath is the sign or mark of the authority of the Romish church. Those who, understanding the claims of the fourth commandment, choose to observe the false sabbath in the place of the true, are thereby paying homage to that power by which alone it is commanded. The mark of the beast is the papal sabbath, which has been accepted by the world in the place of the day of God's appointment.
No one has yet received the mark of the beast. The testing time has not yet come. There are true Christians in every church, not excepting the Roman Catholic communion. None are condemned until they have had the light and have seen the obligation of the fourth commandment. But when the decree shall go forth enforcing the counterfeit sabbath, and the loud cry of the third angel shall warn men against the worship of the beast and his image, the line will be clearly drawn between the false and the true. Then
those who still continue in transgression will receive the mark of the beast.
With rapid steps we are approaching this period. When Protestant churches shall unite with the secular power to sustain a false religion, for opposing which their ancestors endured the fiercest persecution, then will the papal sabbath be enforced by the combined authority of church and state. There will be a national apostasy, which will end only in national ruin. -- Manuscript 51, 1899.
When Seal of God Is Refused. --If the light of truth has been presented to you, revealing the Sabbath of the fourth commandment, and showing that there is no foundation in the Word of God for Sunday observance, and yet you still cling to the false sabbath, refusing to keep holy the Sabbath which God calls "My holy day," you receive the mark of the beast. When does this take place? When you obey the decree that commands you to cease from labour on Sunday and worship God, while you know that there is not a word in the Bible showing Sunday to be other than a common working day, you consent to receive the mark of the beast, and refuse the seal of God.-- Review and Herald, July 13, 1897.
As a Result of Disregard of Light. --God has given men the Sabbath as a sign between Him and them, as a test of their loyalty. Those who, after the light regarding God's law comes to them, continue to disobey and exalt human laws above the law of God in the great crisis before us will receive the mark of the beast.-- Letter 98, 1900.
Caution in Presenting the Sunday Question. --[We are] not to provoke those who have accepted this spurious sabbath, an institution of the Papacy in the place of God's holy Sabbath. Their not having the
Bible arguments in their favour makes them all the more angry and determined to supply the place of arguments that are wanting in the Word of God by the power of their might. The force of persecution follows the steps of the dragon. Therefore great care should be exercised to give no provocation.-- Letter 55, 1886.
Let the Truth Do the Cutting. --Satan's efforts against the advocates of the truth will wax more bitter and determined to the very close of time. As in Christ's day the chief priests and rulers stirred up the people against Him, so today the religious leaders will excite bitterness and prejudice against the truth for this time. The people will be led to acts of violence and opposition which they would never have thought of had they not been imbued with the animosity of professed Christians against the truth.
And what course shall the advocates of truth pursue? They have the unchangeable, eternal Word of God, and they should reveal the fact that they have the truth as it is in Jesus. Their words must not be rugged and sharp. In their presentation of truth they must manifest the love and meekness and gentleness of Christ. Let the truth do the cutting; the Word of God is as a sharp, two-edged sword, and will cut its way to the heart. Those who know that they have the truth should not, by the use of harsh and severe expressions, give Satan one chance to misinterpret their spirit.-- Review and Herald, Oct. 14, 1902.
A Call to Enlighten the Masses. --I have been shown that Satan is stealing a march upon us. The law of God, through the agency of Satan, is to be made void. In our land of boasted freedom, religious liberty will come to an end. The contest will be decided over the Sabbath question, which will agitate the whole world.
Our time for work is limited, and God calls us as ministers and people to be minutemen. Teachers as wise as serpents and as harmless as doves must come to the help of the Lord, to the help of the Lord against the mighty. There are many who do not understand the prophecies relating to these days, and they must be enlightened.-- Letter 1, 1875.
Meeting Sabbathkeeping Problems
No Cause to Worry or Fear. --Often when our workers present the testing Sabbath truth to the people, some stand hesitating for fear of bringing poverty and hardship upon themselves and their families. They say, Yes, I see what you are trying to show me in regard to the observance of the seventh-day Sabbath; but I am afraid if I keep the Sabbath I shall lose my position, and shall not be able to provide for my family. And so, many keep their worldly position and disobey the command of God. But these scriptures [Luke 12:1-7] teach us that the Lord knows all about our experiences; He understands about our inconveniences; and He has a care for all who follow on to know the Lord. He will never allow His children to be tempted above that they are able to bear.
Christ declared to His disciples: "Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on. The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment. Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls? And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit? If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest?"
Holding up before them the lily of the field in its beauty and purity, the Saviour continued: "Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. If then God so clothe the grass, which is today in the field, and tomorrow is cast into the oven; how much more will He clothe you, O ye of little faith?
"And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you."
Christ is here teaching a precious lesson in regard to His service. Whatever experiences may come to you, He says, serve God. Whatever inconveniences and hardships you may encounter, trust in the Lord. We have no cause to worry and fear if we take our position for the truth, that we and our families will suffer. To do this is to manifest unbelief in God. "Your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things," the Saviour says. If we would study the Word more faithfully, we would increase in faith.-- Manuscript 83, 1909.
Time to Extend a Helping Hand. --It is an important time now for these localities where an interest has been awakened. A large number . . . are in the valley of decision. O that the Lord will give to His servants wisdom to speak to these souls such words as shall give them courage to confess the truth and surrender their will, their heart's entire devotion, to God. We pray that the Lord will inspire with faith these souls who are convinced of the truth, that the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord, that they shall
not confer with their own feelings and let the enemy lead them to decide that the sacrifice is too great.
They will suffer loss in temporal matters, and a helping hand must not be wanting. Many ask, "How can we support our families? We shall lose our positions as soon as we decide to keep holy the seventh day and do no work on the Sabbath. Our families, shall they starve?" What can we say? Poverty and want are seen everywhere, and honest souls know not what to do. They dare not venture out; yet they are fully convinced that the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord. They know that God blessed the seventh day and set it apart for man to observe as a memorial of His creating of the world in six days and His rest upon the seventh day.
When we see the difficulties standing like mountains before their souls, the prospect of want to themselves and children staring them in the face, our hearts are pained. Many a one says, "I want to observe the seventh day, but as soon as I state to my employer that I have decided to keep the Sabbath, I shall be discharged." Hundreds are waiting to step into any place made vacant. I am sorely troubled. All we can do is to encourage them to have faith, and pray for them. Oh, sometimes I wish I had a million dollars. I could use every dollar in this work. . . .
Many become decided transgressors of God's holy law as the result of union, concord, and co-operation with companions who are instruments of Satan. God sends them light to undeceive them, but they refuse to take the Word of God as it reads. They accept error, choosing the lies of Satan rather than a "Thus saith the Lord." And these advocates of error make it very hard for those who see the truth to obey it. Human sight can see nothing but starvation before those who keep the Sabbath.-- Manuscript 19, 1894.
Never Results in Starvation. --Never need anyone fear that observance of the true Sabbath will result in starvation. [Isa. 58:11, 12; Prov. 7:2; Isa. 58:14.] These promises are a sufficient answer to all the excuses that man may invent for refusing to keep the Sabbath. Even if, after beginning to keep God's law, it seems impossible to support one's family, let every doubting soul realise that God has promised to care for those who obey His commandments.-- Manuscript 116, 1902.
It Takes Men of Courage. --It requires moral courage to take a position to keep the commandments of the Lord. An opposer of the truth once said that it was only weak-minded people, foolish, ignorant persons, who would turn away from the churches to keep the seventh day as the Sabbath. But a minister who had embraced the truth, replied, "If you think it takes weak-minded persons, just try it." It takes moral courage, firmness, decision, perseverance, and very much prayer to step out on the unpopular side. We are thankful that we can come to Christ as the poor suffering ones came to Christ in the temple. . . .
You have not dared to trample under foot the commandments of God, and have stepped out on unpopular truth, let the result be what it may. Will the Saviour ever turn away to leave you to struggle alone? No, never. But He never told His disciples that they should have no trials, no self-denial to endure, no sacrifices to make. The Master was a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. "Ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, how that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich." We thank God that in your poverty you can call God your Father.
Poverty is coming upon this world, and there will
be a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation. There will be wars and rumours of wars, and the faces of men will gather paleness. You may have to suffer distress; you may go hungry sometimes; but God will not forsake you in your suffering. He will test your faith. We are not to live to please ourselves. We are here to manifest Christ to the world, to represent Him and His power to mankind.-- Manuscript 37, 1894.
Time to Rely on God's Word. --In the wilderness, when all means of sustenance failed, God sent His people manna from heaven; and a sufficient and constant supply was given. This provision was to teach them that while they trusted in God, and walked in His ways, He would not forsake them. The Saviour now practised the lesson He had taught to Israel. By the word of God, succour had been given to the Hebrew host, and by the same word it would be given to Jesus. He awaited God's time to bring relief. He was in the wilderness in obedience to God, and He would not obtain food by following the suggestions of Satan. In the presence of the witnessing universe, He testified that it is a less calamity to suffer whatever may befall, than to depart in any manner from the will of God.
"Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God." Often the follower of Christ is brought where he cannot serve God and carry forward his worldly enterprises. Perhaps it appears that obedience to some plain requirement of God will cut off his means of support. Satan would make him believe that he must sacrifice his conscientious convictions. But the only thing in our world upon which we can rely, is the Word of God. "Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you." Even in this life it is not
for our good to depart from the will of our Father in heaven. When we learn the power of His word, we shall not follow the suggestions of Satan in order to obtain food or to save our lives. Our only questions will be, What is God's command? and what His promise? Knowing these, we shall obey the one, and trust the other.-- The Desire of Ages, p. 121. (1898)
An Appeal to One in the Valley of Decision. --The enemy was telling you to wait for a more convenient season. He has been on hand with his devices presenting to you the advantages you would gain if you did not keep the Sabbath, and the disadvantages you would realise in keeping the Sabbath. He has prepared these various excuses why you should not make your decision to be obedient to the law of God. He is a deceiver. He falsifies the character of God, and you have accepted his temptation. All your imaginings have shown distrust of your heavenly Father.
You have thought when you could realise a certain prosperity in your business, then you would obey the Sabbath of the fourth commandment. But the Lord requires of every one of His subjects entire obedience. God's requirements were upon you, and you have been making terms with God. And all the time Satan has been working to make it more and still more impossible as you look at the matter, to decide to keep the Sabbath. You have been growing less and less susceptible to the movings of the Spirit of God upon your heart. The Lord has given me a message for you and for your children to take up your long-neglected duty, to walk in the light as He is in the light. "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind." "This do," said Christ of a lawyer, "and thou shalt live." This is the voice of God
to yourself and to your children. The law of God is good as well as just and profitable to all who obey, and you will show honour to Him whom you obey.
When your mind is brought into conformity to the will of God, to obey His commandments, think you that the Lord will not have a care for you and your temporal interests? You have been almost persuaded, but did not obey. You thought you would wait until the way cleared before you. The Lord has left every human agent responsible for his course of action. God's claims are to be your first consideration. Obedience to God is your first duty. You are to leave all the consequences in His hands. You have been hesitating because you do not now realise the strong convictions that you once had, and would not yield to obey. You need not expect as forcible conviction again. You will have to obey God and take your position on the truth, feeling or no feeling. Your business now is to work decidedly from principle, to make your decisions irrespective of consequences.-- Letter 72, 1893.
Live Up to Every Ray of Light. --Live up to every ray of light that you have received. Your eternal interests are involved here, and that is why I say, "Cherish every ray of light." On your knees ask Christ to impress your heart by His Holy Spirit, and turn not away from His law.-- Manuscript 10, 1894.
Better Lose Position Than Jesus. --Do not think that if you take your position for the Bible truth you will lose your position. You had better lose your position than lose Jesus. You had better be partakers of the self-denial and self-sacrifice of the Lord than to go in your own way seeking to gather to yourself the treasures of this life. You cannot carry any of it into the grave. You will come up from the grave
without anything, but if you have Jesus you will have everything. He is all that you will require to stand the test of the day of God, and is not this enough for you?-- Manuscript 20, 1894.
A Decided Stand. --Men may raise up all the combativeness they please, but the commandments of God are the commandments of God still. We have decided to keep God's commandments and live, and [preserve] His law as the apple of our eye. Let men rail out against the law of God and trample His commandment-keeping people under their feet. Can they do it and live? It is impossible. God has His measurement of character, and it is those who obey Him that live, and those who keep His law as the apple of their eye that He preserves.-- Manuscript 5, 1891.
Offering Positions to New Sabbathkeepers. --Among those who embraced the truth at _____ last winter was a young man who left the school that he was attending, in order to keep the Sabbath. He was asked what he expected to do for a living. He replied, "God has given me physical strength, and I will work in any capacity rather than break His commandments." Some felt anxious that he should be given a place in the printing office, but one said, "No. When he shows that he will obey God at any cost, then we shall know that he is the very man we need in this office. But if he has not principle enough to do this, he is just the man that we do not want."
Elder _____ came to me, and asked me if he ought to give the young man encouragement to think that he would be given a place in the office. I said, "The God of heaven has presented before him the eternal weight of glory that awaits the overcomer, and if like Moses, he has respect unto the recompense of reward, he will take his position decidedly on the side of truth.
But it would do harm and not good to hold out before him any bribe or attraction. And yet your duty is to help him to see that he must walk out by faith, but do not leave him to wrestle this battle out alone, for Satan will tempt him, and you must render him every help possible."-- Manuscript 26, 1886.
Business Ties With Sabbathbreakers. --There is need of a Sabbath reform among us, who profess to observe God's holy rest day. Some discuss their business matters and lay plans on the Sabbath, and God looks upon this in the same light as though they engaged in the actual transaction of business.
Others who are well acquainted with the Bible evidences that the seventh day is the Sabbath, enter into partnership with men who have no respect for God's holy day. A Sabbathkeeper cannot allow men in his employ, paid by his money, to work on the Sabbath. If, for the sake of gain, he allows the business in which he has an interest to be carried on on the Sabbath by his unbelieving partner, he is equally guilty with the unbeliever; and it is his duty to dissolve the relation, however much he may lose by so doing. Men may think they cannot afford to obey God, but they cannot afford to disobey Him. Those who are careless in their observance of the Sabbath will suffer great loss.-- Review and Herald, March 18, 1884.
One Kind of Employment for Sabbathkeepers. --We find here the best class of people to work for. And for many of them it would not be difficult to keep the Sabbath. _____is a place where a great deal of poultry raising is done. With almost every dwelling house on the outskirts of the city poultry yards are connected. The houses are not built in terraces, but stand apart from one another, often surrounded by several acres of land. Poultry of all kinds is raised,
and the eggs find a ready market in _____ and _____, and are taken to the city by boat.
I write this that you may understand the situation. In poultry raising many families find a means of livelihood, and these could not raise the objection that many raise to keeping the Sabbath--that it would interfere with their business. They could keep the Sabbath without fear of losing their employment.-- Letter 113, 1902.
Preaching on Nonimmortality
Delay Presentation of Objectionable Features. -- Great wisdom should be used in the presentation of a truth that comes directly in opposition to the opinions and practices of the people. Paul's habit was to dwell upon the prophecies when with the Jewish people, and bring them down step by step, and then after some time open the subject of Christ as the true Messiah.
I have been shown that our ministers go too rapidly through their subjects and bring the most objectionable features of our faith too early into their effort. There are truths that will not involve so great a cross, that should be kept before their minds, day after day and even weeks before the Sabbath and immortality questions are entered upon. Then you gain the confidence of the people as being men who have clear, forcible arguments, and they think you understand the Scriptures. When once the confidence of the people is gained, then it is time enough to introduce publicly the Sabbath and immortality questions.
But men who are not wise advance these questions too soon, and thus close the ears of the people, when with greater care and more faith and aptness and wisdom they could have carried them along step by step
through the important events in the prophecies and in dwelling upon practical subjects in the teachings of Christ.-- Letter 48, 1886.
One of the Great Delusions. --Every species of delusion is now being brought in. The plainest truths of God's Word are covered with a mass of man-made theories. Deadly errors are presented as the truth to which all must bow. The simplicity of true godliness is buried beneath tradition.
The doctrine of the natural immortality of the soul is one error with which the enemy is deceiving man. This error is well-nigh universal. . . .
This is one of the lies forged in the synagogue of the enemy, one of the poisonous drafts of Babylon. "All nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. 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."-- Review and Herald, March 16, 1897.
Emphasize Life Through Jesus. --The question of the nonimmortality of the soul also needs to be treated with great care, lest in introducing the subject there be started a deep and exciting controversy which will close the door to further investigation of the truth.
Great wisdom is required in dealing with human minds, even in giving a reason of the hope that is within us. What is the hope of which we are to give a reason? The hope of eternal life through Jesus Christ. . . . You dwell too much upon special ideas and doctrines, and the heart of the unbeliever is not softened. To try to impress him is like striking upon cold iron. . . .
We are in constant need of wisdom to know when to speak and when to keep silent. But there is always perfect safety in talking of the hope of eternal life. And when the heart is all melted and subdued by the love of Jesus, the inquiry will be, "Lord, what must I do to be saved?"-- Letter 12, 1890.
Wisdom Required in Presenting Testing Truths. -- Our growth has been, in untried fields, generally slow because of the seventh-day Sabbath. There stands a sharp cross directly in the way of every soul who accepts the truth.
There are other truths, such as the nonimmortality of the soul and the personal coming of Christ in the clouds of heaven to our earth in a short time. But these are not as objectionable as the Sabbath. Some will conscientiously accept the truth for its own sake, because it is Bible truth, and they love the path of obedience to all the commandments of God. These objectionable features of our faith will bar the way to many souls who do not wish to be a peculiar people, distinct and separate from the world. Therefore, great wisdom is required to be exercised in the matter of how the truth is brought before the people. There are certain clearly defined ends to gain at the very introduction of missionary effort. If the plans and methods had been of a different character, even if they necessarily involved more outlay of means, there would have been far better results.-- Letter 14, 1887.
Lay Off Combative Armour. --Some ministers, when they find before them unbelievers who are prejudiced against our views upon the nonimmortality of the soul out of Christ, feel all stirred up to give a discourse on that very subject. This the hearers are in no way prepared to receive, and it only increases their prejudice and stirs up their opposition. Thus all the good
impressions that might have been made if the worker had pursued a wise course are lost. The hearers are confirmed in their unbelief. Hearts might have been won, but the combative armour was put on. Strong meat was thrust upon them and the souls that might have been won were driven farther off than before.
The combative armour, the debating spirit, must be laid off. If we would be Christlike we must reach men where they are.-- Manuscript 104, 1898.
Correct Understanding Vital. --A correct understanding of "what saith the Scriptures" in regard to the state of the dead is essential for this time. God's Word declares that the dead know not anything, their hatred and love have alike perished. We must come to the sure word of prophecy for our authority. Unless we are intelligent in the Scriptures, may we not, when this mighty miracle-working power of Satan is manifested in our world, be deceived and call it the workings of God; for the Word of God declares that, if it were possible, the very elect should be deceived. Unless we are rooted and grounded in the truth, we shall be swept away by Satan's delusive snares. We must cling to our Bibles. If Satan can make you believe that there are things in the Word of God that are not inspired, he will then be prepared to ensnare your soul. We shall have no assurance, no certainty, at the very time we need to know what is truth.-- Review and Herald, Dec. 18, 1888.
The Message of Christian Stewardship
Teach Every Convert. --Every soul converted is to have the light in regard to the Lord's requirement for tithes and offerings. All that men enjoy they receive from the Lord's great farm, and He is pleased
to have His heritage enjoy His goods; but He has made a special contract with all who stand under the bloodstained banner of Prince Immanuel, that they may show their dependence and accountability to God, by returning to His treasury a certain portion as His own. This is to be invested in supporting the missionary work which must be done to fulfill the commission given to them by the Son of God just before He left His disciples.-- Manuscript 123, 1898.
Each a Link in Chain of Salvation. --He who becomes a child of God should henceforth look upon himself as a link in the chain let down to save the world, one with Christ in His plan of mercy, going forth with Him to seek and save the lost.-- Ministry of Healing, p. 105. (1905)
Evangelists' Responsibility. --It is part of your work to teach those whom you bring into the truth to bring the tithe into the storehouse as an acknowledgment of their dependence on God. They should be fully enlightened as to their duty to return to the Lord His own. The command to pay tithe is so plain that there is no semblance of excuse for disregarding it. If you neglect to give the new converts instruction on this point, you leave undone a most important part of your work.--Letter 51, 1902.
Guiding the New Church. --Never should the labourer who raises up little companies here and there, give the impression to those newly come to the faith, that God does not require them to work systematically in helping to sustain the cause by their personal labours and by their means. . . . All should be taught to do what they can for the Master; to render to Him according as He has prospered them. He claims as His just due a tenth of their
income, be it large or small; and those who withhold this, commit robbery toward Him and cannot expect His prospering hand to be with them. Even if the church is composed mostly of poor brethren, the subject of systematic benevolence should be thoroughly explained, and the plan heartily adopted. God is able to fulfill His promises. His resources are infinite, and He employs them all in accomplishing His will. And when He sees a faithful performance of duty in the payment of the tithes, He often, in His wise providence, opens ways whereby it shall increase. He who follows God's arrangement in the little that has been given him, will receive the same returns as he who bestows of his abundance.-- Gospel Workers, pp. 222, 223. (1915)
Test of Heavenly Fellowship. --Our heavenly Father bestows gifts and solicits a portion back, that He may test us whether we are worthy to have the gift of everlasting life.-- Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 408. (1875)
A Point to Be Presented Tactfully and Repeatedly. --Teachers of the Word of God are not to keep back any part of the counsel of God, lest the people shall be ignorant of their duty, and not understand what is the will of God concerning them, and stumble and fall into perdition. . . .
Let no one neglect to give faithful and plain instruction upon tithing. Let there be instruction as to giving to the Lord that which He claims as His own; for the commendation of the Lord will not rest upon a people who rob Him in tithes and offerings. There will be need of often setting before the people their duty on this matter that they may render unto God His own. Let the one who first presents the truth be faithful in presenting this matter and let him also who follows up the interest also make plain the requirement
of God on tithing, that the people may see that in all points the labourers are teaching the same truth and are of one mind in urging them to yield obedience to all the requirements of God.
But let labourers have discretion and not give strong meat to those who are babes; feed them with the sincere milk of the Word. In no case mingle your own spirit and ideas with the truth and cover up the precepts of God by traditions or suppositions. Let the people have the truth as it is in Jesus.-- Manuscript 39, 1895.
A Neglected Work. --We are to give the message of warning to the world, and how are we doing our work? Are you, brethren, preaching that part of the truth that pleases the people, while other parts of the work are left incomplete? Will it be necessary for someone to follow after you, and urge upon the people the duty of faithfully bringing all the tithes and offerings into the Lord's treasury? This is the work of the minister, but it has been sadly neglected. The people have robbed God, and the wrong has been suffered because the minister did not want to displease his brethren. God calls these men unfaithful stewards. -- Review and Herald, July 8, 1884.
Faithful Tithe, Adequate Means. --Should means flow into the treasury exactly according to God's plan, --a tenth of all the increase,--there would be abundance to carry forward His work.-- Testimonies, vol. 5, p. 150. (1882)
Ingathering for Missions. --In the providence of God, those who are bearing the burden of His work have been endeavouring to put new life into old methods of labour, and also to invent new plans and new methods of awakening the interest of church members in a united effort to reach the world. One of the
new plans for reaching unbelievers is the Harvest Ingathering campaign for missions. In many places, during the past few years, this has proved a success, bringing blessing to many, and increasing the flow of means into the mission treasury. As those not of our faith have been made acquainted with the progress of the third angel's message in heathen lands, their sympathies have been aroused, and some have sought to learn more of the truth that has such power to transform hearts and lives. Men and women of all classes have been reached, and the name of God has been glorified.-- Counsels on Stewardship, pp. 190, 191.
Avoid Worldly Methods. --We see the churches of our day encouraging feasting, gluttony, and dissipation, by the suppers, fairs, dances, and festivals gotten up for the purpose of gathering means into the church treasury. Here is a method invented by carnal minds to secure means without sacrificing. . . .
Let us stand clear of all these church corruptions, dissipations, and festivals, which have a demoralizing influence upon young and old. We have no right to throw over them the cloak of sanctity because the means is to be used for church purposes. Such offerings are lame and diseased, and bear the curse of God. They are the price of souls. The pulpit may defend festivals, dancing, lotteries, fairs, and luxurious feasts, to obtain means for church purposes; but let us participate in none of these things; for if we do, God's displeasure will be upon us. We do not propose to appeal to the lust of the appetite or resort to carnal amusements as an inducement to Christ's professed followers to give of the means which God has entrusted to them. If they do not give willingly, for the love of Christ, the offering will in no case be acceptable to God.-- Counsels on Stewardship, pp. 201, 202. (1878)
Bribed by Feasting and Merriment. --It is a deplorable fact that sacred and eternal considerations do not have that power to open the hearts of the professed followers of Christ to make freewill offerings to sustain the gospel, as the tempting bribes of feasting and general merriment. It is a sad reality that these inducements will prevail when sacred and eternal things will have no force to influence the heart to engage in works of benevolence.
The plan of Moses in the wilderness to raise means was highly successful. There was no compulsion necessary. Moses made no grand feast. He did not invite the people to scenes of gaiety, dancing, and general amusement. Neither did he institute lotteries or anything of this profane order to obtain means to erect the tabernacle of God in the wilderness. God commanded Moses to invite the children of Israel to bring the offerings. Moses was to accept gifts of every man that gave willingly from his heart. These freewill offerings came in so great abundance that Moses proclaimed it was enough. They must cease their presents; for they had given abundantly, more than they could use.-- Counsels on Stewardship, p. 203. (1874)
And what impression is made upon the minds of unbelievers? The holy standard of the Word of God is lowered into the dust. Contempt is cast upon God and upon the Christian name. The most corrupt principles are strengthened by this un-Scriptural way of raising means. And this is as Satan would have it. Men are repeating the sin of Nadab and Abihu. They are using common instead of sacred fire in the service of God. The Lord accepts no such offerings.
All these methods for bringing money into His treasury are an abomination to Him. It is a spurious devotion that prompts all such devising. O what blindness, what infatuation, is upon many who claim to be
Christians! Church members are doing as did the inhabitants of the world in the days of Noah, when the imagination of their hearts was only evil continually. All who fear God will abhor such practices as a misrepresentation of the religion of Jesus Christ.-- Counsels on Stewardship, p. 205. (1896)
Man's Stewardship. --There is a yet deeper significance to the golden rule. Everyone who has been made a steward of the manifold grace of God, is called upon to impart to souls in ignorance and darkness, even as, were he in their place, he would desire them to impart to him. The apostle Paul said, "I am debtor both to the Greeks and to the Barbarians; both to the wise and to the unwise." By all that you have known of the love of God, by all that you have received of the rich gifts of His grace, above the most benighted and degraded soul upon the earth, are you in debt to that soul to impart these gifts unto him.-- Mount of Blessing, p. 193. (1896)
Presentation of the Spirit of Prophecy
New Believers to Have Clear Understanding. --As the end draws near, and the work of giving the last warning to the world extends, it becomes more important for those who accept present truth to have a clear understanding of the nature and influence of the Testimonies, which God in His providence has linked with the work of the third angel's message from its very rise.-- Testimonies, vol. 5, p. 654. (1889) God's Present-Day Instruction. --In ancient times God spoke to men by the mouth of prophets and apostles. In these days He speaks to them by the
testimonies of His Spirit. There was never a time when God instructed His people more earnestly than He instructs them now concerning His will, and the course that He would have them pursue.-- Testimonies, vol. 5, p. 661. (1889)
Frequently Neglected. --Ministers frequently neglect these important branches of the work--health reform, spiritual gifts, systematic benevolence, and the great branches of the missionary work. Under their labours large numbers may embrace the theory of the truth, but in time it is found that there are many who will not bear the proving of God. The minister laid upon the foundation, hay, wood, and stubble, which would be consumed by the fire of temptation.-- Review and Herald, Dec. 12, 1878.
Not to Take Place of the Bible. --The testimonies of Sister White should not be carried to the front. God's Word is the unerring standard. The Testimonies are not to take the place of the Word. Great care should be exercised by all believers to advance these questions carefully, and always stop when you have said enough. Let all prove their positions from the Scriptures and substantiate every point they claim as truth from the revealed Word of God.-- Letter 12, 1890.
Testimonies Not Ahead of Bible. --The more we look at the promises of the Word of God, the brighter they grow. The more we practice them, the deeper will be our understanding of them. Our position and faith is in the Bible. And never do we want any soul to bring in the Testimonies ahead of the Bible. -- Manuscript 7, 1894.
Purpose of the Testimonies. --The Word of God is sufficient to enlighten the most beclouded mind, and
may be understood by those who have any desire to understand it. But notwithstanding all this, some who profess to make the Word of God their study, are found living in direct opposition to its plainest teachings. Then, to leave men and women without excuse, God gives plain and pointed testimonies, bringing them back to the Word that they have neglected to follow. The Word of God abounds in general principles for the formation of correct habits of living, and the Testimonies, general and personal, have been calculated to call their attention more especially to these principles.-- Testimonies, vol. 5, pp. 663, 664. (1889)
The Greater and Lesser Lights. --Little heed is given to the Bible, and the Lord has given a lesser light to lead men and women to the greater light.-- Colporteur Evangelist, p. 37. (1902)
Illustration: Presenting the Spirit of Prophecy. -- Elder _____ enters into no controversy with opponents. He presents the Bible so clearly that it is evident that anyone who differs must do so in opposition to the Word of God. Friday evening and Sabbath forenoon he spoke upon the subject of spiritual gifts, dwelling especially upon the Spirit of prophecy. Those who were present at these discourses say that he treated the subject in a clear, forceful manner.-- Letter 388, 1906. In his teaching Elder _____ showed that the Spirit of prophecy has an important part to act in the establishment of the truth. When binding off his work, he called for me . . . to speak to the people.-- Letter 400, 1906.
Give Time to Weigh Evidence. --In the last vision given at Battle Creek I was shown that an unwise
course was taken at _____ in regard to the visions at the time of the organisation of the church there. There were some in _____ who were God's children, and yet doubted the visions. Others had no opposition, yet dared not take a decided stand in regard to them. Some were sceptical, and they had sufficient cause to make them so. The false visions and fanatical exercises, and the wretched fruits following, had an influence upon the cause in _____, to make minds jealous of everything bearing the name of visions. All these things should have been taken into consideration, and wisdom exercised. There should be no trial or labour with those who have never seen the individual having visions, and who have had no personal knowledge of the influence of the visions. Such should not be deprived of the benefits and privileges of the church, if their Christian course is otherwise correct, and they have formed a good Christian character.
Some, I was shown, could receive the published visions, judging of the tree by its fruits. Others are like doubting Thomas; they cannot believe the published Testimonies, nor receive evidence through the testimony of others, but must see and have the evidence for themselves. Such must not be set aside, but long patience and brotherly love should be exercised toward them until they find their position and become established for or against. If they fight against the visions, of which they have no knowledge; if they carry their opposition so far as to oppose that in which they have had no experience, and feel annoyed when those who believe that the visions are of God speak of them in meeting, and comfort themselves with the instruction given through vision, the church may know that they are not right.-- Testimonies, vol. 1, pp. 327-329. (1862)
Driven to a Premature Position. --I have been shown that some, especially in _____, make the visions a rule by which to measure all; and have taken a course which my husband and myself have never pursued. Some are unacquainted with me and my labours, and they are very sceptical of anything bearing the name of visions. This is all natural, and can be overcome only by experience. If persons are not settled in regard to the visions, they should not be crowded off. The course to pursue with such may be found in Testimony No. 8 [volume 1, pages 328, 329], which I hope will be read by all. Ministers should have compassion of some, making a difference; others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire. God's ministers should have wisdom to give to everyone his portion of meat, and to make that difference with different persons which their cases require. The course pursued with some in _____ who are unacquainted with me, has not been careful and consistent. Those who were, comparatively, strangers to the visions, have been dealt with in the same manner as those who have had much light and experience in the visions. Some have been required to indorse the visions when they could not conscientiously do so, and in this way some honest souls have been driven to take positions against the visions and against the body, which they never would have taken had their cases been managed with discretion and mercy.-- Testimonies, vol. 1, pp. 382, 383. (1863)
Overcoming the Opposition. --The ministers (non-S.D.A.) are opening up their tirade, and against Mrs. White in particular. But this is only hurting themselves. . . . I am placing Desire of Ages, Great Controversy, Patriarchs and Prophets, and Christ Our Saviour in families; so while the ministers are working against
me, I will speak in my writings to the people. I believe souls will be converted to the truth. We are now turning them to the law and to the testimonies. If they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.-- Letter 217, 1899.
Judged by Their Fruits. --Let the Testimonies be judged by their fruits. What is the spirit of their teaching? What has been the result of their influence? All who desire to do so can acquaint themselves with the fruits of these visions. . . .
God is either teaching His church, reproving their wrongs, and strengthening their faith, or He is not. This work is of God, or it is not. God does nothing in partnership with Satan. My work . . . bears the stamp of God, or the stamp of the enemy. There is no halfway work in the matter. The Testimonies are of the Spirit of God, or of the devil.-- Testimonies, vol. 5, p. 671. (1889)
God Speaks Through Testimonies. --We must follow the directions given through the Spirit of prophecy. We must love and obey the truth for this time. This will save us from accepting strong delusions. God has spoken to us through His Word. He has spoken to us through the Testimonies to the church, and through the books that have helped to make plain our present duty and the position that we should now occupy.-- Testimonies, vol. 8, p. 298. (1904)
Presenting Health and Christian Standards [* SEE ALSO PP. 513-551, "A MEDICAL EVANGELISM," AND PP. 657-665, "HEALTH AND HEALTH PRINCIPLES."]
Presenting Health Reform. --Our work is to be practical. We are to remember that man has a body as
well as a soul to save. Our work includes far more than standing before the people to preach to them. In our work we are to minister to the physical infirmities of those with whom we are brought in contact. We are to present the principles of health reform, impressing our hearers with the thought that they have a part to act in keeping themselves in health.
The body must be kept in a healthy condition in order that the soul may be in health. The condition of the body affects the condition of the soul. He who would have physical and spiritual strength must educate his appetite in right lines. He must be careful not to burden the soul by overtaxing his physical or spiritual powers. Faithful adherence to right principles in eating, drinking, and dressing is a duty that God has laid upon human beings.
The Lord desires us to obey the laws of health and life. He holds each one responsible to care properly for his body, that it may be kept in health.-- Letter 123, 1903.
A Part of the Last Message. --The principles of health reform are found in the Word of God. The gospel of health is to be firmly linked with the ministry of the Word. It is the Lord's design that the restoring influence of health reform shall be a part of the last great effort to proclaim the gospel message. -- Medical Ministry, p. 259.
As a people we have been given the work of making known the principles of health reform. There are some who think that the question of diet is not of sufficient importance to be included in their evangelistic work. But such make a great mistake. God's Word declares, "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God." 1 Cor. 10:31. The subject of temperance, in all its bearings,
has an important place in the work of salvation.-- Testimonies, vol. 9, p. 112. (1909)
Fully Established in Health Reform. --Those who live in the last days of this earth's history need to be fully established in the principles of health reform. . . .
Sickly men and sickly women need to become health reformers. God will co-operate with His children in preserving their health, if they eat with care, refusing to put unnecessary burdens on the stomach. He has graciously made the path of nature sure and safe, wide enough for all who will walk in it. He has given for our sustenance the wholesome and health-giving productions of the earth. . . .
Many have done the body much injury by a disregard of the laws of life, and they may never recover from the effects of their neglect; but even now they may repent and be converted. Man has tried to be wiser than God. He has become a law unto himself. God calls upon us to give attention to His requirements, no longer to dishonour Him by dwarfing the physical, mental, and spiritual capabilities.-- Letter 135, 1902.
Health Reform Progressive and Practical. --The Lord desires our ministers, physicians, and church members to be careful not to urge those who are ignorant of our faith to make sudden changes in diet, thus bringing men to a premature test. Hold up the principles of health reform, and let the Lord lead the honest in heart. They will hear and believe. Nor does the Lord require His messengers to present the beautiful truths of healthful living in a way that will prejudice minds. Let no one put stumbling blocks before the feet that are walking in the dark paths of ignorance. Even in praising a good thing, it is well
not to be too enthusiastic, lest you turn out of the way those who come to hear. Present the principles of temperance in their most attractive form.
We must not move presumptuously. The labourers who enter new territory to raise up churches must not create difficulties by attempting to make prominent the question of diet. They should be careful not to draw the lines too closely, for impediments would thus be thrown in the pathway of others. Do not drive the people; lead them.
Wherever the truth is carried, instruction should be given in regard to the preparation of wholesome foods. God desires that in every place the people shall be taught by skilful teachers how to utilize wisely the products that they can raise or readily obtain in their section of the country. Thus the poor, as well as those in better circumstances, can be taught to live healthfully.-- Gospel Workers, p. 233. (1915)
Keep It to the Front. --The work of health reform is the Lord's means for lessening suffering in our world and for purifying His church. Teach the people that they can act as God's helping hand, by co-operating with the Master worker in restoring physical and spiritual health. This work bears the signature of heaven, and will open doors for the entrance of other precious truths. There is room for all to labour who will take hold of this work intelligently.
Keep the work of health reform to the front, is the message I am instructed to bear. Show so plainly its value that a wide-spread need for it will be felt. Abstinence from all hurtful food and drink is the fruit of true religion. He who is thoroughly converted will abandon every injurious habit and appetite. By total abstinence he will overcome his desire for health-destroying indulgences.
I am instructed to say to health-reform educators, Go forward. The world needs every jot of the influence you can exert to press back the tide of moral woe. Let those who teach the third angel's message stand true to their colours.-- Testimonies, vol. 9, pp. 112, 113. (1909)
Total Abstinence From Liquor and Tobacco. --Men and women have many habits that are antagonistic to the principles of the Bible. The victims of strong drink and tobacco are corrupted, body, soul, and spirit. Such ones should not be received into the church until they give evidence that they are truly converted, that they feel the need of the faith that works by love and purifies the soul. The truth of God will purify the true believer. He who is thoroughly converted will abandon every defiling habit and appetite. By total abstinence he will overcome his desire for health-destroying indulgences.-- Letter 49, 1902.
Conversion the Secret of Victory. --The very first and the most important thing is to melt and subdue the soul by presenting our Lord Jesus Christ as the sinbearer, the sin-pardoning Saviour, making the gospel as clear as possible.
When the Holy Spirit works among us, as it surely has done at the camp meeting in _____, souls who are unready for Christ's appearing are convicted. Many come to our meetings and are converted who for years have not attended meetings in any church. The simplicity of the truth reaches their hearts. It touches all classes. The tobacco devotees sacrifice their idol and the liquor drinker his liquor. They could not do this if they did not grasp by faith the promises of God for the forgiveness of their sins. Is
it not worth a decided effort to save these souls?-- Letter 4, 1899.
Begin Reform at the Foundation. --Liquor drinking encourages the vilest debauchery and strengthens the most Satanic propensities. . . . As we face these things, and see the terrible consequences of liquor drinking, shall we not do all in our power to rally to the help of God in fighting against this great evil? At the foundation of liquor drinking lie wrong habits of eating. Those who believe present truth should refuse to drink tea or coffee, for these excite a desire for stronger stimulant. They should refuse to eat flesh meat, for this too excites a desire for strong drink. Wholesome food, prepared with taste and skill, should be our diet now.
Those who are not health reformers treat themselves unfairly and unwisely. By the indulgence of appetite they do themselves fearful injury. Some may think that the question of diet is not important enough to be included in the question of religion. But such make a great mistake. God's Word declares, "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God." The subject of temperance, in all its bearings, has an important place in the working out of our salvation. Because of wrong habits of eating, the world is becoming more and more immoral. -- Letter 49, 1902.
Personal Labour for Intemperate. --Missionary work does not consist merely of preaching. It includes personal labour for those who have abused their health and have placed themselves where they have not moral power to control their appetites and passions. These souls are to be laboured for as those more favourably situated. Our world is full of suffering ones.
God has written His law upon every nerve and
muscle, every fibre and function of the human body. The indulgence of unnatural appetite, whether for tea, coffee, tobacco, or liquor, is intemperance, and is at war with the laws of life and health. By using these forbidden articles a condition of things is created in the system which the Creator never designed. This indulgence in any of the members of the human family is sin. . . . The eating of food that does not make good blood is working against the laws of our physical organism, and is a violation of the law of God. The cause produces the effect. Suffering, disease, and death are the sure penalty of indulgence.-- Letter 123, 1899.
The Quest for Pleasure. --Multitudes are vainly seeking happiness in worldly amusements. They crave something which they do not have. They are spending their money for that which is not bread, and their labour for that which satisfieth not. The hungering, thirsting soul will continue to hunger and thirst as long as it partakes of these unsatisfying pleasures. O that every such one would listen to the voice of Jesus, "If any man thirst, let him come unto Me, and drink." Those who drink of the living water will thirst no more for frivolous, exciting amusements. Christ, the wellspring of life, is the fountain of peace and happiness.
God bestows various talents and gifts upon men, not that they may lie useless, nor that they may be employed in amusements or selfish gratification, but that they may be a blessing to others by enabling men to do earnest, self-sacrificing missionary work.-- The Youth's Instructor, Nov. 6, 1902.
Shows and Theatres. --Satan's ruling passion is to pervert the intellect and cause men to long for shows and theatrical performances. The experience and
character of all who engage in this work will be in accordance with the food given to the mind.
The Lord has given evidence of His love for the world. There was no falsity, no acting, in what He did. He gave a living gift, capable of suffering humiliation, neglect, shame, reproach. This Christ did that He might rescue the fallen. While human beings were instituting schemes and methods to destroy Him, the Son of the Infinite God came to our world to give an example of the great work to be done to redeem and save man. But today the proud and disobedient are striving to acquire a great name and great honour from their fellow men by using their God-given endowments to amuse.-- Manuscript 42, 1898.
Working for Pleasure Lovers. --Instead of disparaging Jacob's well, Christ presented something infinitely better. . . . He offered the woman something better than anything she possessed, even living water, the joy and hope of the gospel of His kingdom.
This is an illustration of the way in which we are to work. It is of little use for us to go to pleasure lovers, theatergoers, horse racers, drunkards, gamblers, and scathingly rebuke them for their sins. This will do no good. We must offer them something better than that which they have, even the peace of Christ, which passeth all understanding. . . .
These poor souls are engaged in a wild chase after worldly pleasure and earthly riches. They have no knowledge of anything more desirable. But games, theatres, horse races, will not satisfy the soul. Human beings were not created to be satisfied in this way, to spend their money for that which is not bread. Show them how infinitely superior to the fleeting joys and pleasures of the world is the imperishable glory of heaven. Seek to convince them of the freedom and
hope and rest and peace there is in the gospel. "Whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst," Christ declared.-- Manuscript 12, 1901.
Instructions on Dress and Pleasure. --The principles of the Christian life should be made plain to those who have newly come to the truth. Faithful, Christian men and women should have an intense interest to bring the convicted soul to a correct knowledge of righteousness in Christ Jesus. If any have allowed the desire for pleasure or the love of dress to become supreme, so that any portion of their mind, soul, and strength is devoted to selfish indulgences, the faithful believers should watch for these souls as they that must give an account. They must not neglect the faithful, tender, loving instruction so essential to the young converts, that there may be no half-hearted work.-- Manuscript 56, 1900.
Instructing New Converts on Idolatry of Dress.-- One of the points upon which those newly come to the faith will need instruction is the subject of dress. Let the new converts be faithfully dealt with. Are they vain in dress? Do they cherish pride of heart? The idolatry of dress is a moral disease. It must not be taken over into the new life. In most cases, submission to the gospel requirements will demand a decided change in the dress.
There should be no carelessness in dress. For Christ's sake, whose witnesses we are, we should seek to make the best of our appearance. In the tabernacle service, God specified every detail concerning the garments of those who ministered before Him. Thus we are taught that He has a preference in regard to the dress of those who serve Him. Very specific were the directions given in regard to Aaron's robes, for his
dress was symbolic. So the dress of Christ's followers should be symbolic. In all things we are to be representatives of Him. Our appearance in every respect should be characterized by neatness, modesty, and purity. But the Word of God gives no sanction to the making of changes in apparel merely for the sake of fashion,--that we may appear like the world. Christians are not to decorate the person with costly array or expensive ornaments.
The words of Scripture in regard to dress should be carefully considered. We need to understand that which the Lord of heaven appreciates in even the dressing of the body. All who are in earnest in seeking for the grace of Christ will heed the precious words of instruction inspired by God. Even the style of the apparel will express the truth of the gospel.
All who study the life of Christ and practice His teachings will become like Christ. Their influence will be like His. They will reveal soundness of character. As they walk in the humble path of obedience, doing the will of God, they exert an influence that tells for the advancement of the cause of God and the healthful purity of His work. In these thoroughly converted souls the world is to have a witness to the sanctifying power of truth upon the human character. -- Testimonies, vol. 6, pp. 96, 97. (1900)
In Keeping With Our Faith. --Self-denial in dress is a part of our Christian duty. To dress plainly, and abstain from display of jewellery and ornaments of every kind is in keeping with our faith. Are we of the number who see the folly of worldlings in indulging in extravagance of dress as well as in love of amusements? If so, we should be of that class who shun everything that gives sanction to this spirit which takes possession of the minds and hearts of those who live
for this world only, and who have no thought or care for the next.-- Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 366. (1875)
Conformity to Christ or the World. --A sister who had spent some weeks at one of our institutions in _____, said that she felt much disappointed in what she saw and heard there. . . . Before accepting the truth, she had followed the fashions of the world in her dress, and had worn costly jewellery and other ornaments; but upon deciding to obey the Word of God, she felt that its teachings required her to lay aside all extravagant and superfluous adorning. She was taught that Seventh-day Adventists did not wear jewellery, gold, silver, or precious stones, and that they did not conform to worldly fashions in their dress. When she saw among those who profess the faith such a wide departure from Bible simplicity, she felt bewildered. Had they not the same Bible which she had been studying, and to which she had endeavoured to conform her life? Had her past experience been mere fanaticism? Had she misinterpreted the words of the apostle, "The friendship of the world is enmity with God, for whosoever will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God"?
Mrs. D, a lady occupying a position in the institution, was visiting at Sr. _____'s room one day, when the latter took out of her trunk a gold necklace and chain, and said she wished to dispose of this jewellery and put the proceeds into the Lord's treasury. Said the other, "Why do you sell it? I would wear it if it was mine." "Why," replied Sr. _____, "when I received the truth, I was taught that all these things must be laid aside. Surely they are contrary to the teachings of God's Word." And she cited her hearer to the words of the apostles, Paul and Peter, upon this point, "In like manner, also, that women adorn
themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broidered hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; but, as becometh women professing godliness, with good works." "Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel. But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit."
In answer, the lady displayed a gold ring on her finger, given her by an unbeliever, and said she thought it no harm to wear such ornaments. "We are not so particular," said she, "as formerly. Our people have been overscrupulous in their opinions upon the subject of dress. The ladies of this institution wear gold watches and gold chains, and dress like other people. It is not good policy to be singular in our dress; for we cannot exert so much influence."
We inquire, Is this in accordance with the teachings of Christ? Are we to follow the Word of God, or the customs of the world? Our sister decided that it was the safest to adhere to the Bible standard. Will Mrs. D and others who pursue a similar course be pleased to meet the result of their influence, in that day when every man shall receive according to his works?
God's Word is plain. Its teachings cannot be mistaken. Shall we obey it, just as He has given it to us, or shall we seek to find how far we can digress and yet be saved? Would that all connected with our institutions would receive and follow the divine light, and thus be enabled to transmit light to those who walk in darkness.
Conformity to the world is a sin which is sapping the spirituality of our people, and seriously interfering
with their usefulness. It is idle to proclaim the warning message to the world, while we deny it in the transactions of daily life.-- Review and Herald, March 28, 1882.
A Work of the Heart. --There are many who try to correct the life of others by attacking what they consider are wrong habits. They go to those whom they think are in error, and point out their defects. They say, "You don't dress as you should." They try to pick off the ornaments, or whatever seems offensive, but they do not seek to fasten the mind to the truth. Those who seek to correct others should present the attractions of Jesus. They should talk of His love and compassion, present His example and sacrifice, reveal His Spirit, and they need not touch the subject of dress at all. There is no need to make the dress question the main point of your religion. There is something richer to speak of. Talk of Christ, and when the heart is converted, everything that is out of harmony with the Word of God will drop off. It is only labour in vain to pick leaves off a living tree. The leaves will reappear. The ax must be laid at the root of the tree, and then the leaves will fall off, never to return.
In order to teach men and women the worthlessness of earthly things, you must lead them to the living Fountain, and get them to drink of Christ, until their hearts are filled with the love of God, and Christ is in them, a well of water springing up into everlasting life.-- Signs of the Times, July 1, 1889.
Cleanse the fountain, and the streams will be pure. If the heart is right, your words, your dress, your acts, will all be right.-- Testimonies, vol. 1, p. 158. (1857)
Simplicity of Dress. --We are nearing the close of this world's history. A plain, direct testimony is now
needed, as given in the Word of God, in regard to plainness of dress. This should be our burden. But it is too late now to become enthusiastic in making a test of this matter. The dress of our people should be made most simply. . . . No one precise style has been given me as the exact rule to guide all in their dress. . . .
Our sisters should clothe themselves with modest apparel. They should dress with simplicity. Your hats and dresses need not the extra trimmings that are put upon them. You are to be clothed with modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety. Give to the world a living illustration of the inward adorning of the grace of God. Let our sisters dress plainly, as many do, having the dress of good material, durable, modest, appropriate for this age, and let not the dress question fill the mind.-- Manuscript 97, 1908.
The Two Monumental Pillars. --The ordinances of baptism and the Lord's supper are two monumental pillars, one within and one without the church. Upon these ordinances Christ has inscribed the name of the true God.-- Manuscript 27 ½, 1900.
The Lord's Supper a Continuing Memorial. --The symbols of the Lord's house are simple and plainly understood, and the truths represented by them are of the deepest significance to us. In instituting the sacramental service to take the place of the Passover, Christ left for His church a memorial of His great sacrifice for man. "This do," He said, "in remembrance of Me." This was the point of transition between two economies and their two great festivals. The one was
to close forever; the other, which He had just established, was to take its place, and to continue through all time as the memorial of His death.-- Review and Herald, June 22, 1897.
Feet Washing More Than a Form. --We do not come to the ordinances of the Lord's house merely as a form. . . .
He has instituted this service, that it may speak constantly to our senses of the love of God that has been expressed in our behalf. . . . This service cannot be repeated without one thought linking itself with another. Thus a chain of thought calls up remembrances of blessings, of kindnesses, and of favours received from friends and brethren, that have passed out of mind. The Holy Spirit, with its quickening, vivifying power, presents the ingratitude and lack of love that have sprung from the hateful root of bitterness. Link after link of memory's chain is strengthened. The Spirit of God is at work upon human minds. The defects of character, the neglect of duties, the ingratitude to God, are brought to the remembrance, and the thoughts are brought into captivity to Christ.-- Review and Herald, June 7, 1898.
Heart Preparation. --In the early days of the advent movement, when our numbers were few, the celebration of the ordinances was made a most profitable occasion. On the Friday before, every church member endeavoured to clear away everything that would tend to separate him from his brethren and from God. Hearts were closely searched; prayers for a divine revelation of hidden sin were earnestly offered; confessions of overreaching in trade, of ill-advised words hastily spoken, of sins cherished, were made. The Lord came near, and we were greatly strengthened and encouraged. -- Manuscript 102, 1904.
The Purpose of the Ordinance of Service. -- Reconciliation one with another is the work for which the ordinance of feet washing was instituted. By the example of our Lord and Master, this humiliating ceremony has been made a sacred ordinance. Whenever it is celebrated, Christ is present by His Holy Spirit. It is this Spirit that brings conviction to hearts.
As Christ celebrated this ordinance with His disciples, conviction came to the hearts of all save Judas. So we shall be convicted as Christ speaks to our hearts. The fountains of the soul will be broken up. The mind will be energized, and, springing into activity and life, will break down every barrier that has caused disunion and alienation. Sins that have been committed will appear with more distinctness than ever before; for the Holy Spirit will bring them to our remembrance. The words of Christ, "If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them," will be clothed with new power.-- Review and Herald, Nov. 4, 1902.
Test of the Heart. --This ordinance of feet washing was made a religious service. . . . It was given as something to test and prove the loyalty of the children of God. When modern Israel observes the sacramental ordinance, this ceremony should precede the partaking of the emblems of the Lord's death.
This ordinance was given for the benefit of Christ's disciples. And Christ meant all that He said when His lips uttered the words, "I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you. . . . If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them." He designed by this to test the true state of the heart and mind of those who participated therein.-- Manuscript 8, 1897.
For All Time in Every Country. --In the place of the national festival which the Jewish people had
observed, He instituted a memorial service, the ordinance of feet washing and the sacramental supper, to be observed through all time by His followers in every country. These should ever repeat Christ's act, that all may see that true service calls for unselfish ministry.-- Signs of the Times, May 16, 1900.
To Be Often Commemorated. --In this last act of Christ in partaking with His disciples of the bread and wine, He pledged Himself to them as their Redeemer by a new covenant, in which it was written and sealed that upon all who will receive Christ by faith will be bestowed all the blessings that heaven can supply, both in this life and in the future immortal life.
This covenant deed was to be ratified by Christ's own blood, which it had been the office of the old sacrificial offerings to keep before the minds of His chosen people. Christ designed that this supper should be often commemorated, in order to bring to our remembrance His sacrifice in giving His life for the remission of the sins of all who will believe on Him and receive Him. This ordinance is not to be exclusive, as many would make it. Each must participate in it publicly, and thus say: "I accept Christ as my personal Saviour. He gave His life for me, that I might be rescued from death."-- Review and Herald, June 22, 1897.
Experience: Dealing Faithfully With an Interested Minister. --Sabbath morning, when the church at _____ celebrated the ordinances, Brother _____ was present. He was invited to unite in the ordinance of feet washing, but said he preferred to witness it. He asked if participation in this ordinance was required before one could partake of communion, and was assured by our brethren that it was not obligatory,
and that he would be welcome to the table of the Lord. This Sabbath was a most precious day to his soul; he said that he had never had a happier day in his life.
He afterward desired an interview with me, and we had a pleasant visit. His conversation was very interesting, and we had a precious season of prayer together. I believe that he is a servant of God. I gave him my books Great Controversy, Patriarchs and Prophets, and Steps to Christ . He seemed much pleased, said he wanted all the light he could get in order to meet the opponents of our faith. He was baptized before leaving for his home, and will return to present the truth to his own congregation.-- Manuscript 4, 1893.
Not Close Communion. --Christ's example forbids exclusiveness at the Lord's supper. It is true that open sin excludes the guilty. This the Holy Spirit plainly teaches. But beyond this none are to pass judgement. God has not left it with men to say who shall present themselves on these occasions. For who can read the heart? Who can distinguish the tares from the wheat?-- The Desire of Ages, p. 656. (1898) There may come in among you those who are not in heart united with truth and holiness, but who may wish to take part in these services. Forbid them not. -- Manuscript 47, 1897.
With Reverence. --Everything connected with it should suggest as perfect a preparation as possible. Every ordinance of the church should be uplifting. They should not be made common or cheap, or placed on a level with common things. . . . Our churches need to be educated to a higher order of reverence and respect for the sacred service of God.-- Manuscript 76, 1900.
This ceremony is not to be performed listlessly, but earnestly, keeping in view its purpose and object.-- Manuscript 8, 1897.
A Blessed Meeting. --This day has been a most precious season of refreshment to my soul. The little company here are organized into a church, and I met with them to celebrate the ordinances. I spoke from John 13, and precious ideas were impressed upon my mind in regard to the ordinance of humility. . . . There is much in this simple rite that is not seen and appreciated. I was blessed in partaking of the symbols of the broken body and spilled blood of our precious Saviour, who became sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. He was our sin bearer.
The meeting today was a very solemn occasion for all present. The testimony meeting was excellent. Everyone whose name was called responded willingly. I know that the Lord Jesus was in the midst of us, and all heaven was pleased as we followed the example of Christ. On these occasions the Lord manifests Himself in a special manner to so soften and subdue the soul, to expel selfishness, to imbue with His Holy Spirit, and to bring love and grace and peace into hearts that are contrite.
As the meeting closed, and we turned to our tents in the woods, a soft, sweet, holy influence pervaded our hearts. My soul was filled with sweet peace.-- Manuscript 14, 1895.