Testimonies for the Church, vol. 1


Chapter 43—The Poor

Some who are poor in this world's goods are apt to place all the straight testimony upon the shoulders of the men of property. But they do not realize that they also have a work to do. God requires them to make a sacrifice. He calls upon them to sacrifice their idols. They should lay aside such hurtful stimulants as tobacco, tea, and coffee. If they are brought into straitened circumstances while exerting themselves to do the best they can, it will be a pleasure for their wealthy brethren to help them out of trouble. 1T 224.3

Many lack wise management and economy. They do not weigh matters well, and move cautiously. Such should not trust to their own poor judgment, but should counsel with their brethren who have experience. But those who lack economy and good judgment are often unwilling to seek counsel. They generally think that they understand how to conduct their temporal business, and are unwilling to follow advice. They make bad moves, and suffer in consequence. Their brethren are grieved to see them suffer, and they help them out of difficulty. Their unwise management affects the church. It takes means from the treasury of God which should have been used to advance the cause of present truth. If these poor brethren take a humble course and are willing to be advised and counseled by their brethren, and are then brought into straitened places, the brethren should feel it a duty to cheerfully help them out of difficulty. But if they choose their own course, and rely upon their own judgment, they should be left to feel the full consequences of their unwise course, and learn by dear experience that “in multitude of counselors there is safety.” God's people should be subject one to another. They should counsel with one another, that the lack of one may be supplied by the sufficiency of another. I saw that the stewards of the Lord have no duty to help those persons who persist in using tobacco, tea, and coffee. 1T 224.4