The Training of Workers
If ever the Lord has spoken by me, He speaks when I say that the workers engaged in educational lines, in ministerial lines, and in medical missionary lines must stand as a unit, all laboring under the supervision of God, one helping the other, each blessing each.
Those connected with our schools and sanitariums are to labor with earnest alacrity. The work that is done under the ministration of the Holy Spirit, out of love for God and for humanity, will bear the divine signature and will make its impression on human minds.
The Lord calls upon our young people to enter our schools and quickly fit themselves for service. In various places outside of cities, schools are to be established where our youth can receive an education that will prepare them to go forth to do evangelical work and medical missionary work.
The Lord must be given an opportunity to show men their duty and to work upon their minds. No one is to bind himself to serve for a term of years under the direction of one group of men or in one specified branch of the Master’s work; for the Lord Himself will call men, as of old He called the humble fishermen, and will Himself give them instruction regarding their field of labor and the methods they should follow. He will call men from the plow and from other occupations to give the last note of warning to perishing souls. There are many ways in which to work for the Master, and the Great Teacher will open the understanding of these workers, enabling them to see wondrous things in His word.
Nurses As Evangelists
Christ, the great Medical Missionary, is our example. Of Him it is written that He “went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people.” Matthew 4:23. He healed the sick and preached the gospel. In His service, healing and teaching were linked closely together. Today they are not to be separated.
The nurses who are trained in our institutions are to be fitted up to go out as medical missionary evangelists, uniting the ministry of the word with that of physical healing.
We must let our light shine amid the moral darkness. Many who are now in darkness, as they see a reflection of the Light of the world, will realize that they have a hope of salvation. Your light may be small, but remember that it is what God has given you, and that He holds you responsible to let it shine forth. Someone may light his taper from yours, and his light may be the means of leading others out from the darkness.
All around us are doors open for service. We should become acquainted with our neighbors and seek to draw them to Christ. As we do this, He will approve and cooperate with us.
Often the inhabitants of a city where Christ labored wished Him to stay with them and continue to work among them. But He would tell them that He must go to cities that had not heard the truths that He had to present. After He had given the truth to those in one place He left them to build upon what He had given them, while He went to another place. His methods of labor are to be followed today by those to whom He has left His work. We are to go from place to place, carrying the message. As soon as the truth has been proclaimed in one place, we are to go to warn others.
There should be companies organized and educated most thoroughly to work as nurses, as evangelists, as ministers, as canvassers, as gospel students, to perfect a character after the divine similitude. To prepare to receive the higher education in the school above is now to be our purpose.
From the instruction that the Lord has given me from time to time, I know that there should be workers who make medical evangelistic tours among the towns and villages. Those who do this work will gather a rich harvest of souls from both the higher and lower classes. The way for this work is best prepared by the efforts of the faithful canvasser.
Many will be called into the field to labor from house to house, giving Bible readings and praying with those who are interested.
Let our ministers, who have gained an experience in preaching the word, learn how to give simple treatments and then labor intelligently as medical missionary evangelists.
Workers—gospel medical missionaries—are needed now. You cannot afford to spend years in preparation. Soon doors now open to the truth will be forever closed. Carry the message now. Do not wait, allowing the enemy to take possession of the fields now open before you. Let little companies go forth to do the work to which Christ appointed His disciples. Let them labor as evangelists, scattering our publications and talking of the truth to those they meet. Let them pray for the sick, ministering to their necessities, not with drugs, but with nature’s remedies, and teaching them how to regain health and avoid disease.
Chapter 17—The Loma Linda College of Evangelists
[Manuscript read before the delegates at the General Conference, Washington, D.C., June 1, 1909. ]
While attending the General Conference of 1905, at Washington, D. C., I received a letter from J. A. Burden describing a property he had found about four miles from Redlands. As I read his letter I was impressed that this was one of the places I had seen in vision, and I immediately telegraphed him to secure the property without delay. Later, when I visited the property, I recognized it as one of the places I had seen nearly two years before in vision. How thankful I am to the Lord our God for this place!
One of the chief advantages of Loma Linda is the pleasing variety of charming scenery on every side. The extensive view of valley and mountain is magnificent. But more important than magnificent scenery and beautiful buildings and spacious grounds is the close proximity of this institution to a densely populated district and the opportunity thus afforded of communicating to many, many people a knowledge of the third angel’s message. We are to have clear spiritual discernment, else we shall fail of discerning the opening providences of God that are preparing the way for us to enlighten the world.
With the possession of this place comes the weighty responsibility of making the work of the institution educational in character. Loma Linda is to be not only a sanitarium, but an educational center. A school is to be established here for the training of gospel medical missionary evangelists. Much is involved in this work, and it is very essential that a right beginning be made. The Lord has a special work to be done in this field. He instructed me to call on Elder and Mrs. Haskell to help us in getting properly started a work similar to that which they had carried on at Avondale. Laborers of experience have consented to unite with the forces at Loma Linda to develop the school that must be carried on there. As they go forward in faith, the Lord will go before them, preparing the way.
In regard to the school I would say: Make it especially strong in the education of nurses and physicians. In medical missionary schools many workers are to be qualified with the ability of physicians to labor as medical missionary evangelists. This training, the Lord has specified, is in harmony with the principles underlying true higher education. We hear a great deal about the higher education. The highest education is to follow in the footsteps of Christ, patterning after the example He gave when He was in the world. We cannot gain an education higher than this, for this class of training will make men laborers together with God.
To have the higher education is to have a living connection with Christ. The Saviour took the unlearned fishermen from their boats and their fishing nets and connected them with Himself as He traveled from place to place, teaching the people and ministering to their needs. Sitting down on a rock or on some elevated place, He would gather His disciples about Him and give them instruction, and, before long, hundreds of people would be listening to His words. There are many men and women who suppose that they know all that is worth knowing, when they greatly need to sit humbly at the feet of Jesus and learn of Him who gave His life that He might redeem a fallen world. We all need Christ—the One who left the royal courts, laying off His kingly robe and crown and His majesty in the heavens, and clothing Himself with humanity. The Son of God came as a little babe, that He might understand the experiences of humanity and know how to deal with them. He knows the wants of the children. In the days of His earthly ministry He would not allow them to be forbidden to come to Him. Send them not away, He said to His disciples, “for of such is the kingdom of heaven.”
In the work of the school maintain simplicity. No argument is so powerful as is success founded on simplicity. You may attain success in the education of students as medical missionaries without a medical school that can qualify physicians to compete with the physicians of the world. Let the students be given a practical education. The less dependent you are upon worldly methods of education, the better it will be for the students. Special instruction should be given in the art of treating the sick without the use of poisonous drugs and in harmony with the light that God has given. In the treatment of the sick, poisonous drugs need not be used. Students should come forth from the school without having sacrificed the principles of health reform or their love for God and righteousness.
The education that meets the world’s standard is to be less and less valued by those who are seeking for efficiency in carrying the medical missionary work in connection with the work of the third angel’s message. They are to be educated from the standpoint of conscience, and, as they conscientiously and faithfully follow right methods in their treatment of the sick, these methods will come to be recognized as preferable to the methods to which many have become accustomed, which demand the use of poisonous drugs.
We should not at this time seek to compete with worldly medical schools. Should we do this, our chances of success would be small. We are not now prepared to carry out successfully the work of establishing large medical institutions of learning. Moreover, should we follow the world’s methods of medical practice, exacting the large fees that worldly physicians demand for their services, we would work away from Christ’s plan for our ministry to the sick.
There should be at our sanitariums intelligent men and women who can instruct in Christ’s methods of ministry. Under the instruction of competent, consecrated teachers the youth may become partakers of the divine nature and learn how to escape the corruption that is in the world through lust. I have been instructed that we should have many more women who can deal especially with the diseases of women, many more lady nurses who will treat the sick in a simple way without the use of drugs.
It is not in harmony with the instruction given at Sinai that gentlemen physicians should do the work of midwives. The Bible speaks of women at childbirth being attended by women, and thus it ought always to be. Women should be educated and trained to act skillfully as midwives and physicians to their sex. This is the Lord’s plan. Let us educate ladies to become intelligent in the work of treating the diseases of their sex. We ought to have a school where women can be educated by women physicians to do the best possible work in treating the diseases of women. Among us as a people the medical work should stand at its highest.
In Loma Linda we have an advantageous center for the carrying on of various missionary enterprises. We can see that it was in the providence of God that this sanitarium was placed in the possession of our people. We should appreciate Loma Linda as a place which the Lord foresaw we should need and which He gave us. There is a very precious work to be done in connection with the interests of the sanitarium and the school at Loma Linda, and this will be done, when we all work to that end, moving unitedly in God’s order.
At Loma Linda many can be educated to work as missionaries in the cause of health and temperance. Teachers are to be prepared for many lines of work. Schools are to be established in places where as yet no efforts have been made. Missionaries are to go to other states where little work has been done. The work of promulgating the principles of health reform must be accomplished. God help us as a people to be wise.
I feel a deep interest that careful study shall be given to the needs of our institutions at Loma Linda and that right moves shall be made. In the carrying forward of the work at this place, men of talent and decided spirituality are needed. The best teachers are to be employed in the educational work, men and women who will walk circumspectly, depending wholly upon the Lord. If the teachers in medical lines will stand in their place in the fear of God, we shall see a good work done. With Christ as our educator we may reach a high standard in the knowledge of the true science of healing.
That which is of the most importance is that the students be taught how to represent aright the principles of health reform. Teach them to pursue this line of study faithfully, combined with other essential lines of education. The grace of Jesus Christ will give wisdom to all who follow the Lord’s plan of true education. Let the students follow closely the example of the One who purchased the human race with the costly price of His own life. Let them appeal to the Saviour and depend upon Him as the One who heals all manner of diseases. The Lord would have the workers make special efforts to point the sick and suffering to the Great Physician who made the human body.
It is well that our training schools for Christian workers should be established near to our health institutions, that the students may be educated in the principles of healthful living. Institutions that send forth workers who are able to give a reason for their faith, and who have a faith which works by love and purifies the soul, are of great value. I have clear instruction that, wherever it is possible, schools should be established near to our sanitariums, that each institution may be a help and strength to the other. He who created man has an interest in those who suffer. He has directed in the establishment of our sanitariums and in the building up of our schools close to our sanitariums, that they may become efficient mediums in training men and women for the work of ministering to suffering humanity.
Let Seventh-day Adventist medical workers remember that the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. Christ was the greatest physician that ever trod this sin-cursed earth. The Lord would have His people come to Him for their power of healing. He will baptize them with His Holy Spirit and fit them for a service that will make them a blessing in restoring the spiritual and physical health of those who need healing.
Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 9 pp. 169-178