Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9


Chapter 26—The Needs of a Mission Field

For many years the Lord has been keeping before His people the needs of the work among the colored people in the Southern States of America. The moral darkness of this field is, in itself, a powerful plea for the exercise of liberality. In the past some have done what they could to support this branch of our work, and their beneficence has borne fruit in the conversion of many souls. 9T 225.1

Although much remains to be done for the colored people, we have cause for rejoicing over the good beginning that has been made. In a recent number of The Gospel Herald [1907] it is reported that “fifteen years ago there were not over twenty colored Seventh-day Adventists south of Mason and Dixon's line; but today there are seven hundred. Twelve years ago there was only one colored Seventh-day Adventists church; today there are fifty, not counting those in Africa and the West Indies.... The tithe of the colored people last year in the United States amounted to five thousand dollars; fifteen years ago it was not over fifty dollars.” 9T 225.2

Let us thank God, dear brethren and sisters, and take courage! God is laying bare His arm to do a mighty work in this mission field within the borders of our own land. He is now giving His people unusual opportunities to extend the message rapidly in the South. Especially should we reveal a spirit of beneficence at the time the yearly offering for the support of the colored work is taken up. God has reposed confidence in us by making us stewards of means and of His rich grace; and He now points us to the poor and suffering and oppressed, to souls bound in chains of superstition and error, and assures us that if we do good to these, He will accept the deed as though done to Himself. “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these My brethren,” He declares, “ye have done it unto Me.” Matthew 25:40. 9T 225.3

Thousands of colored people in the South may now be uplifted, and become human agents to help their own race, if they can receive the help God is calling upon us to give them. Multitudes of men and women in this field feel their deep poverty and their need of uplifting. And when faithful teachers shall come in to open to them the Scriptures just as they read, presenting truth in its native purity, the darkness will disappear. Bright beams of light will shine upon the soul searching for truth. And with those who have had advantages, a close and intelligent investigation will take place upon the subjects of truth revealed in the Scriptures. Many will be taught of God. They will learn aright from the Great Teacher, and will accept with joy the truths that will sanctify and uplift. The moral image of God will be restored in the soul, and many will be eternally saved. 9T 226.1

My dear brethren and sisters, Christ is now saying to you: “Lift up your eyes and look on this Southern field; for it needs workers—sowers of the seed, and reapers. It needs your means for the maintenance of these workers.” The grace of Christ is unlimited, it is God's free gift. Then why should not this neglected people have some hope and courage and faith brought into their lives? There is sunshine in the heart for all who will accept Christ. 9T 226.2

September, 1907.