Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9


God's Almoners

Those who are truly converted will regard themselves as God's almoners and will dispense, for the advancement of the work, the means He has placed in their hands. If Christ's words were obeyed, there would be sufficient means in His treasury for the needs of His cause. He has entrusted to men and women an abundance of means for the carrying forward of His plan of mercy and benevolence. He bids His stewards of means invest their money in the work of feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and preaching the gospel to the poor. Perfection of character cannot possibly be attained without self-sacrifice. 9T 53.2

Never was there a more important time in the history of our work than the present. The message of the third chapter of Malachi comes to us, holding up before us the need of honesty in our relations to the Lord and His work. My brethren, the money that you use to buy and sell and get gain will be a curse to you if you withhold from the Lord that which is His. The means entrusted to you for the advancement of the Lord's work should be used in sending the gospel to all parts of the world. 9T 53.3

We are Christ's witnesses, and we are not to allow worldly interests and plans to absorb our time and attention. There are higher interests at stake. “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness.” Matthew 6:33. Christ gave Himself willingly and cheerfully to the carrying out of the will of God. He became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. In view of all that He has done, should we feel it a hardship to deny self? Shall we draw back from being partakers of Christ's sufferings? His death ought to stir every fiber of our beings, making us willing to consecrate to His work all that we have and are. As we think of all that He has done for us, our hearts should be filled with gratitude and love, and we should renounce all selfishness. What duty could the heart refuse to perform under the constraining influence of the love of Christ? 9T 53.4

Shall we not, by self-denial, do all that we can to advance God's enterprise of mercy? Can we behold the divine condescension, the suffering endured by the Son of God, without being filled with a desire to be allowed to sacrifice something for Him? Is it not a high honor to be allowed to co-operate with Him? He left His heavenly home to seek for us. Shall we not become His undershepherds, to seek for the lost and straying? Shall we not reveal in our lives His divine tenderness and compassion? 9T 54.1

The Lord desires His people to be thoughtful and care-taking. He desires them to practice economy in everything. If the workers in the mission fields could have the means that is used in expensive furnishings and in personal adornment, the triumphs of the cross of Christ would be greatly extended. 9T 54.2

Not all can make large offerings, not all can do great works, magnificent deeds; but all can practice self-denial, all can reveal the unselfishness of the Saviour. Some can bring large gifts to the Lord's treasury; others can bring only mites; but every gift brought in sincerity is accepted by the Lord. 9T 54.3

We plead for the money that is spent on needless things. My brethren and sisters, waste not your money in purchasing unnecessary things. You may think these little sums do not amount to much, but many littles will make a great whole. Cut off every extravagant expenditure. Indulge in nothing that is simply for display. Your money means the salvation of souls. Let there be systematic giving on the part of all. Some may be unable to give a large sum, but all can lay aside each week something for the Master. Let the children act their part. Let parents teach their children to save their pennies to give to the Lord. The gospel ministry is to be supported by self-denial and sacrifice. Through the self-denying efforts of God's people others will be brought into the faith, and these in turn will help to increase the offerings made for the carrying forward of the Lord's work. 9T 55.1

Unmistakable evidences point to the nearness of the end. The way must be prepared for the coming of the Prince of Peace. Let not our church members complain because they are so often called upon to give. What is it that makes the frequent calls a necessity? Is it not the rapid increase of missionary enterprises? Shall we, by refusing to give, retard the growth of these enterprises? Shall we forget that we are laborers together with God? From every church, prayers should ascend to God for an increase of devotion and liberality. My brethren and sisters, do not plead for retrenchment in evangelical work. So long as there are souls to save, our interest in the work of soulsaving is to know no abating. The church cannot abridge her task without denying her Master. Not all can go as missionaries to foreign lands, but all can give of their means for the carrying forward of foreign missions. 9T 55.2

There are new fields to be entered, and we must have your help. Shall we ignore the commission given us, and thus forfeit the fulfillment of the promise accompanying the commission? Shall the people of God become careless and indifferent, and refuse to give of their means for the advancement of His work? Can they do this without severing their connection with Him? They may think thus to economize, but it is a fearful economy that places them where they are separated from God. 9T 56.1

My brethren and sisters, it is too late to devote your time and strength to self-serving. Let not the last day find you destitute of the heavenly treasure. Seek to push the triumphs of the cross, seek to enlighten souls, labor for the salvation of your fellow beings, and your work will abide the trying test of fire. 9T 56.2

Every true, self-sacrificing worker for God is willing to spend and be spent for the sake of others. Christ says: “He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal.” John 12:25. By earnest, thoughtful efforts to help where help is needed, the true Christian shows his love for God and for his fellow beings. He may lose his life in service; but when Christ comes to gather His jewels to Himself, he will find it again. 9T 56.3

My brethren and sisters, do not spend a large amount of time and money on self, for the sake of appearance. Those who do this are obliged to leave undone many things that would have comforted others, sending a warm glow to their weary spirits. We all need to learn how to improve faithfully the opportunities that so often come to us to bring light and hope into the lives of others. How can we improve these opportunities if our thoughts are centered on self? He who is self-centered loses countless opportunities for doing that which would have brought blessing to himself and others. It is the duty of the servant of Christ, under every circumstance, to ask himself, What can I do to help others? Having done his best, he is to leave the consequences with God. 9T 56.4

God has provided for everyone pleasure that may be enjoyed by rich and poor alike—the pleasure found in cultivating pureness of thought and unselfishness of action, the pleasure that comes from speaking sympathizing words and doing kindly deeds. From those who perform such service, the light of Christ shines to brighten lives darkened by many sorrows. 9T 57.1

The temptation may come to you to invest your money in land. Perhaps your children will advise you to do this. But can you not show a better way? Has not your money been entrusted to you to be traded upon wisely, and put out to usury, that when the Lord comes, He may find the talents doubled? Can you not see that He wants you to use your means in helping to build meeting houses and to establish sanitariums? 9T 57.2

We need now to esteem souls above money. If you know of a higher work in this world than the work of soulsaving, a work which will bring better results for the investment of means, will you not tell us of it, that we may measure its value? 9T 57.3

I fear that many of our people do not realize the importance of God's work. One to whom I wrote for money answered thus: “I received your letter asking me to lend you some money. But there was a piece of land that the children thought it advisable for me to purchase, and I have invested my spare means in this land.” How much better would it have been for this brother to invest his money in establishing sanitariums, in which witness is borne to the truth for this time, or in schools, which will provide for our youth the best influences, and in which they can be trained to become missionaries for God. 9T 57.4

My brethren and sisters, invest your means in the establishment of Christian missions, from which the light of truth will shine forth, drawing souls to God. One soul, truly converted, becoming a missionary for God, will win other souls to the Saviour. 9T 58.1

God Himself originated plans for the advancement of His work, and He has provided His people with a surplus of means, that when He calls for help, they may respond, saying: Lord, Thy pound hath gained other pounds.” 9T 58.2

If those to whom God's money has been entrusted will be faithful in bringing the means lent them to the Lord's treasury, His work will make rapid advancement. Many souls will be won to the cause of truth, and the day of Christ's coming will be hastened. Men and women are to be brought under the influence of true, earnest, wholehearted workers, who labor for souls as they that must give an account. All who are baptized into a measure of the apostolic spirit will be constrained to become God's missionaries. If they will be true, firm in the faith, if they will not sell their Lord for gain, but will ever acknowledge the divine supremacy and superintendence, God will prepare the way before them and will greatly bless them. He will help them to represent His goodness, love, and mercy. And the glory of the Lord will be their rearward. There will be joy in the heavenly courts, and joy, pure, heavenly joy, will fill the hearts of the workers. To save perishing souls they will be willing to spend and be spent, and their hearts will be filled with love and thanksgiving. The consciousness of God's presence will purify and ennoble their experience, enriching and strengthening them. The grace of heaven will be revealed in their work, in the conquests achieved in winning souls to Christ. 9T 58.3

So God's work in our world is to be carried forward. Faithful stewards are to place the Lord's money in His treasury, that workers may be sent to all parts of the world. The church here below is to serve God with self-denial and sacrifice. Thus the work is to be carried forward and the most glorious triumphs won. 9T 59.1

Love for lost souls brought Christ to Calvary's cross. Love for souls will lead us to self-denial and sacrifice, for the saving of that which is lost. And as Christ's followers give back to the Lord His own, they are accumulating treasure which will be theirs when they hear the words: “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: ... enter thou into the joy of thy Lord,” “who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Matthew 25:21; Hebrews 12:2. The joy of seeing souls eternally saved will be the reward of all who follow in the steps of the Redeemer. 9T 59.2


“He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” Romans 8:32. 9T 59.3

It was a costly sacrifice that the Lord of heaven made. Divine benevolence was stirred to its unfathomable depths; it was impossible for God to give more. He “so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16. Why is our gratitude so limited? It is only as a ripple on the surface, compared with the great tide of love that flows to us from the Father. 9T 59.4


The signs that foretell the second coming of Christ are fast fulfilling. Shall the people be left in ignorance of the great event before them and have to meet that awful day unprepared? Heaven has made a complete offering for the salvation of the world. Shall those who profess to love God and keep His commandments be indifferent to the souls of men? No, no! they cannot be. 9T 60.1

With untiring zeal those who have received the light of present truth should go forth to give this light to those who sit in darkness. With consecrated efforts, by self-denial and self-sacrifice, they are to labor in the strength of the God of Israel. This message is to be carried to foreign lands; it is to be given to the cities and towns of our own country. The weary and the heavy-laden are longing for the message of truth that will give them rest and peace in Christ. Who will carry the message to those who have never heard it? Who will seek the joy and glory of God by drawing sinners to the feet of Him who gave His life a sacrifice for every soul? Who will lift up the Saviour before men as “the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world”? John 1:29. 9T 60.2