Testimonies for the Church, vol. 8


Chapter 16—The Result of Reformation

St. Helena, California,

September 26, 1901

Dear Brother Daniells,

Yesterday morning I read your letter, in which you express your ardent desire to see a strong corps of workers sent to India and China and other Oriental countries. Last night instruction was given me that at present our principal efforts are not to be made especially for China or other fields similar to China. We first have a work to do at home. All our institutions—our sanitariums, publishing houses, and schools—are to reach a higher standard. Then the workers sent to foreign fields will reach a higher standard. They will be more earnest, more spiritual, and their labors will be more effective. 8T 87.1

Years ago the Lord gave me special directions that buildings should be erected in various places in America, Europe, and other lands for the publication of literature containing the light of present truth. He gave instruction that every effort should be made to send forth to the world from the press the messages of invitation and warning. Some will be reached by our literature who would not be reached in any other way. From our books and papers bright beams of light are to shine forth to enlighten the world in regard to present truth. 8T 87.2

Workers who are not benefited by the advantages they receive in connection with the cause of God should not be brought into our offices of publication. Neither should matter of an objectionable character be introduced into these institutions, for by so doing the sacred truth of God is placed on a level with common matters. And when outside work is brought in, a correspondingly large number of workers must be employed. This brings care and perplexity. 8T 87.3

I have been shown that mistakes are being made in our publishing houses. There is a constant increase of expensive machinery for the doing of commercial work. A large amount of work has been brought in that has no relation to the work which in faith and love is to be accomplished for the salvation of human beings. Time and talent have been used in doing a class of work that has brought no glory to God. Much effort has been put forth in lines that do nothing to spread a knowledge of the truth. 8T 88.1

It is high time that consideration be given to this matter. This mistake must be corrected. It is not wisdom to use money to establish enterprises that consume without producing. It is said that more room is needed in the publishing houses. But there is ample room in them, and when the right thing is done, it will be seen that there is sufficient room. 8T 88.2

Far less commercial work should be received into our offices of publication, and not a line of matter containing Satan's sentiments should be received. The introduction of such matter destroys all sense of the sacredness of the institution. The whole institution is cheapened. There is always danger, when the common is mingled with the sacred, that the common will be allowed to take the place of the sacred. 8T 88.3

How does the Lord regard the using of the presses in His institutions to print the errors of the enemy? When objectionable matter is mingled with sacred matter coming from the presses, His blessing cannot rest upon the work done. Said the divine Teacher: “What have you gained by bringing in this outside work? It has brought you much vexation of spirit; and the workers have had to hurry and rush to get the matter finished in the specified time. This has occasioned confusion and strife. Harsh words have been spoken, and an unpleasant spirit has been brought into the office. The financial gain in no way compares with the loss which has come through rushing and driving and scolding and fretting.” 8T 88.4

May the Lord help His people to see that this is not wisdom and that far more is lost than is gained. If less machinery and fewer workers had been brought together in one place while other portions of the vineyard were destitute of facilities; if more money had been spent in making plants in various places, God would have been better pleased. It is not sanctified ambition that has led to the investment of so much money in one place. It is a mistake for our brethren to run so many presses for the printing of merely secular matter. We are fast approaching the end. The printing and circulation of the books and papers that contain the truth for this time are to be our work. 8T 89.1

There is a marked neglect of the cautions and warnings that have been given from time to time. When there is a seeking of the Lord and a confession of sin, when the needed reformation takes place, united zeal and earnestness will be shown in restoring what has been withheld. The Lord will manifest His pardoning love, and means will come to cancel the debts on our institutions. 8T 89.2