Testimonies – Vol. 8, Day 429

But instead of men being sent from Battle Creek, as God has directed in the pointed testimonies that have been given, thousands of dollars have been devoted to enlarging the institutions and increasing the facilities in Battle Creek. And the call comes from Battle Creek for more conveniences and more workers. But there must be a change.

We are encouraged as we see the work that is being done in Chicago and a few other places. Years ago the large responsibilities centering in Battle Creek should have been distributed. You may look with satisfaction at the widespreading growth of the sanitarium at Battle Creek, but God does not look upon it with the same approval that you do. If institutions had been built up in other places, if men had been given responsibilities to bear, there would have been far more strength, far more efficiency in our work, and we should have moved more nearly in accordance with the mind and will of God than we have. As it is, a few men are carrying heavy responsibilities. A few wield an influence that has a controlling power in the management of the work far and near, while there are many who carry no burdens.

Many of those carrying heavy responsibilities need to be converted. Christ says to them as He said to Nicodemus: “Ye must be born again.” “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:7, 3. Many are controlled by an unchristian spirit. They have not yet learned in the school of Christ His meekness and lowliness, and unless they change, they will yield to Satan’s temptations. Year after year they carry sacred responsibilities, yet prove themselves incapable of distinguishing between the sacred and the common. How long shall such men continue to wield a controlling influence? How long shall their word be permitted to exalt or to cast down, to condemn or to lift up? How long shall they hold such power that no one dare make a change in their methods?


Build Up New Centers

People are encouraged to settle in Battle Creek, to give their influence to the building up of a modern Jerusalem. This is not after God’s order. Thus other places are deprived of facilities that they should have. Enlarge ye; spread ye; yes, but not in one place only. Go out and establish centers of influence in places where nothing, or next to nothing, has been done. Break up your consolidated mass; diffuse the saving beams of light into the darkened corners of the earth. A work similar to that of an eagle stirring up her nest needs to be done.

“Moab hath been at ease from his youth, and he hath settled on his lees, and hath not been emptied from vessel to vessel, neither hath he gone into captivity: therefore his taste remained in him, and his scent is not changed.” Jeremiah 48:11. This is true of many of the believers who are coming to Battle Creek. Many have a spasmodic zeal in battle, but their light is like that of a meteor that flashes across the heavens and then goes out.

Let God’s workmen who have the interests of His cause at heart do something for the colored people in the Southern field. Let not God’s stewards be content merely to touch this field with the tips of their fingers. Let those at the heart of the work plan in earnest for this field. Many have talked about it, but what are they doing as the stewards of God’s means? Why do they feel at liberty to bind up God’s capital of means in Battle Creek? Why do they do the very things that they have been warned not to do? The matter is becoming serious, for warnings and entreaties have been given in vain. The arms of power in Battle Creek are being extended more and more widely, seeking to control the work far and near, and to crush that which they cannot control. I lift my voice in protest. The spirit that now controls is not the Spirit of the Lord.


The Lord has blessed Battle Creek again and again by pouring out His Spirit upon the church and the workers, but how few have cherished the influence of the Spirit. How few have expended their money as God has directed. Means has been expended in educating those who knew the truth, while fields that are wholly unenlightened have been neglected. Had ministers gone out as Christ has commissioned them, had they used the gifts entrusted them to carry the light to those in darkness, they would have obtained far more knowledge of God and of Christ than they have obtained by seeking additional education in our schools.

A Failure to Appreciate God-Given Responsibilities

Has not God given us a work to do? Has He not bidden us go among opposing influences and convert men from error to truth? Why have not those who have so frequently gathered in the large assemblies in Battle Creek put into practice the truth that they have heard? If they had imparted the light that they have received, what a transformation of character would have been seen. For every grace imparted, God would have given grace. They have not prized as they should the work that has been done for them, or they would have gone forth into the dark places of the earth, to shed abroad the light. They would have given to the world the message of righteousness by faith, and their own light would have grown clearer and clearer; for God would have worked with them. Many have gone down into the grave in error because those who know the truth have failed to communicate the precious knowledge they have received. If the light that has shone so freely in Battle Creek had been diffused many would have been raised up to become laborers together with God.

Oh, that our brethren and sisters might value aright the truth! Oh, that they might become sanctified by it! Oh, that they might realize that upon them rests the responsibility of communicating this truth to others! But they do not feel the importance of living the truth, of being doers of the words of Christ. Many are self-sufficient. They are not filled with the missionary spirit that should animate the disciples of Christ. If they knew what it means to have travail of soul for others, angels of God would work through them to communicate a knowledge of the truth. They would know the truth, and the truth would make them free. Money would no longer be expended in adding building to building in one place, but would be used in opening new fields, in planting the standard of truth in cities that have not yet been worked. The elevating, purifying, ennobling principles of heaven would be introduced into society and would work like leaven.


Extract from a letter written in 1899, from Cooranbong, N. S. W., Australia—It is God’s design that those fields which have abundant facilities shall share their advantages with more needy fields. The principle is ever to be followed in all our institutions. God requires that there be less planning for buildings in places where the work is already established, and that means be sent to fields where, for lack of facilities, the laborers work at a great disadvantage.


Chapter 24—God’s Purpose for His Institutions

Newtown, Tasmania,

December 1, 1895

To the Medical Superintendent of a Large Sanitarium—

My Dear Brother,

Every institution that bears the name of Seventh-day Adventist is to be to the world as was Joseph in Egypt, and as were Daniel and his fellows in Babylon. In the providence of God these men were taken captive, that they might carry to heathen nations the knowledge of the true God. They were to be representatives of God in our world. They were to make no compromise with the idolatrous nations with which they were brought in contact, but were to stand loyal to their faith, bearing as a special honor the name of worshipers of the God who created the heavens and the earth. These youth stood firm to principle. They lived in close connection with God honoring Him in all their ways, and He honored them. He was their wisdom. He gave them knowledge and understanding.

Today the remnant people of God are to glorify His name by proclaiming the last message of warning, the last invitation to the marriage supper of the Lamb. The only way in which they can fulfill God’s expectations is by being representatives of the truth for this time.

The Lord has wrought through human agents to fulfill the prophecies. He has made sacred, eternal truth stand out plainly amidst the heresies and delusions that Christ declared would exist in the last days.

My brother, you are situated where you can be a representative of the truth for this time. Keep close to the Great Teacher. I saw you holding up the banner on which are written the words: “Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” Revelation 14:12. Several men, some of them those with whom you are connected in the sanitarium, were presenting to you a banner on which was a different inscription. You were letting go the banner of Seventh-day Adventists, and were reaching out to grasp the banner presented to you. One of great dignity approached you and with deep earnestness said:


“Unto you therefore which believe He is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, and a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed. But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” 1 Peter 2:7-9. Then your hand firmly grasped the true banner, and these encouraging words were spoken: “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife hath made herself ready. And to her, was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.” Revelation 19:7, 8.

I was instructed that you and your fellow laborers were in danger of hiding the principles of our faith in order to obtain large patronage. Every jot done in this line, instead of extending the influence of the truth, will hinder its advance.

You and your associates in the sanitarium work need a pilot with you constantly, else you will be shipwrecked. You surely must understand your peril. Satan is making every effort to turn you aside into strange paths. God has strengthened you. Your soul must be sanctified through the truth, that your steadfast adherence to principles may be plain to all. The more fully your helpless soul leans upon God, the more fully you make Him your trust, the more hungry you will become for the bread of life.


God is to be recognized and honored by the people calling themselves Seventh-day Adventists. In the past the truth has, to the honor of God, been proclaimed with convincing power by the physicians and helpers in our sanitariums. God will accept no less of you, but will expect far more. You and your associates are to labor on in faith and firmness to prevent decline and to ensure progress. There must be no narrowing down of your work, no concealing of the principles of truth; there must be a widening of the base of operations. Many plants must be made in different places. There is need of more zeal, more faith, more influence, of more active, spirited workers.

Remember that you are working for time and for eternity. Heavenly angels are commissioned to co-operate with your efforts for the conquest of souls. More earnest efforts should be made to establish the truth in various localities. And there must be no covering up of any phase of our message. The truth for this time must be given to the souls ready to perish. Those who in any way hide the truth dishonor God. Upon their garments will be the blood of souls.

God’s Purpose for the Sanitarium

The Battle Creek Sanitarium is a broad missionary field. God has been moving upon souls to seek in this institution relief from physical suffering. He requires that everything connected with it shall be such as He can approve.

He is pleased that a chapel should be built in connection with the sanitarium, that those who visit the institution may be given an opportunity to hear for themselves the truth as it is in Jesus. The precious gospel is to be presented to them, not in a weak diluted style but in strong, warm accents. As it is made plain that godliness is necessary to salvation, the peculiarities of our faith will appear, distinguishing us from the world. But no tirade is to be made against the doctrines held by others. In our association with worldlings we are to recommend our faith by living, in all true modesty, the principles of Christianity.


The Value of A Study of God’s Word

If the medical students will study the word of God diligently, they will be far better prepared to understand their other studies; for enlightenment always comes with an earnest study of the word of God. Let our medical missionary workers understand that the more they become acquainted with God and with Christ, and the more they become acquainted with Bible history, the better prepared they will be to do their work.

The students in our schools should aspire to higher knowledge. Nothing will so help to give them a retentive memory as a study of the Scriptures. Nothing will so help them in gaining a knowledge of their other studies.

If unbelievers desire to join your classes for the training of medical missionaries, and you think that they would not exert an influence that would draw other students away from the truth, give them a chance. Some of your best missionaries may come from among them. They have never heard the truth, and as they are placed where they are surrounded with an influence that reveals the spirit of the Master, some will be won to the truth. In the studies given, there should be no concealment of one principle of Bible truth. If admitting to your classes those not of our faith will lead to silence on the great themes that concern our present and eternal good,—themes that should ever be kept before the mind,—let them not be admitted. In no case is principle to be sacrificed or the peculiar characteristics of our faith hidden in order to add outside students to our classes.


Faithful teachers should be placed in charge of the Bible classes, teachers who will strive to make the students understand their lessons, not by explaining everything to them, but by requiring them to explain clearly every passage they read. Let these teachers remember that little good will be accomplished by skimming over the surface of the word. Thoughtful investigation and earnest, taxing study are required in order for this word to be understood. There are truths in the word which, like veins of precious ore, are hidden beneath the surface. The hidden treasure is discovered as it is searched for, as a miner searches for gold and silver. The evidence of the truth of God’s word is in the word itself. Scripture is the key that unlocks scripture. The deep meaning of the truths of God’s word is unfolded to our minds by His Spirit.

The Bible is the great lessonbook for the students in our schools. It teaches the whole will of God concerning the sons and daughters of Adam. It is the rule of life, teaching us of the character that we must form for the future life. We need not the dim light of tradition to make the Scriptures comprehensible. As well might we suppose that the noonday sun needs the glimmering torchlight of earth to increase its glory. The utterances of priest and minister are not needed to save men from error. Those who consult the divine Oracle will have light. In the Bible every duty is made plain. Every lesson given is comprehensible. Every lesson reveals to us the Father and the Son. The word is able to make all wise unto salvation. In the word the science of salvation is plainly revealed. Search the Scriptures, for they are the voice of God speaking to the soul.


Chapter 25—God’s Purpose in Medical Missionary Work

Melbourne, Victoria,

February 3, 1898.

My Dear Brother,

Special light has been given me that you are in danger of losing sight of the work for this time. You are erecting barriers to separate your work, and those you are educating, from the church. This must not be. Those who are receiving instruction in medical missionary lines should be led to realize that their education is to fit them to do better work in connection with the ministers of God. You are to remember, my brother, that the Lord has a people upon the earth whom He respects. But your words, and the way in which they are often spoken, create unbelief in the position that we occupy as a people. You are in danger of failing to hold fast the faith once delivered to the saints, of making shipwreck of your faith. The words were spoken: “A very small leak will sink a ship. One defective link makes a chain worthless.”

Educate Medical Missionaries

Remember, my brother, that medical missionary work is not to take men from the ministry, but is to place men in the field, better qualified to minister because of their knowledge of medical missionary work. Young men should receive an education in medical missionary lines and should then go forth to connect with the ministers. They should not be influenced to give themselves exclusively to the work of rescuing the fallen and degraded. That work is found everywhere and is to be combined with the work of preparing a people to make Bible truth their defense against the sophistries of worldlings and of the fallen church. The third angel is to go forth with great power. Let none ignore this work or treat it as of little importance. The truth is to be proclaimed to the world, that men and women may see the light.

Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 8 pp. 149-158