Ms 238, 1902

Ms 238, 1902

Diary/Responsibilities of the Christian Physician


Circa 1902

Previously unpublished.

The Lord Jesus has given us a pattern of what every physician should strive to be—a physician of the soul as well as of the body. As the consecrated physician shall take up his appointed work, let him bear in mind that, in the Word, he has before him his example to copy. Never forget who is your Leader. Never exchange Him for finite man. 17LtMs, Ms 238, 1902, par. 1

I have been deeply interested in the representation made to me in regard to the work of a physician. It is a most solemn work and not any one that lives can do the work Christ would have them do without His special help. If the physician will dedicate soul, body, and spirit to God, he should have a most solemn sense of his work. He will be placed under special trying circumstances. When human life is dependent upon the operator that uses the knife, how skillful is that hand to be! Unless God guides in the matter, there is a failure. This watchcare of the Great Physician has been and will be as long as the human agent puts his trust in God every moment. Physicians who are dealing with bodies to save from suffering and from death will have One appointed of God to stand by the man who fears God and realizes his work to be one of great influence to save and not to destroy. The physician may become careless and presumptuous unless he has a sense that the Lord Jesus is the One who steadies the nerves and he works in prayer at every moment. 17LtMs, Ms 238, 1902, par. 2

Let all bear in mind that the physician should be a man after God's own heart and mind and soul. There are thousands of physicians that have taken up this work who have no great sense of what it means. There needs to be much more looking unto Jesus and depending upon Him. I am assured that the physician who treats the sick has a most solemn trust. While we are encouraging that sanitariums be established, we would say the physicians from the first to the last need to carry a most decided influence in regard to the value of these human souls. Unless they are physicians who are themselves [faithful] in the belief and practice of the truth we are not to connect them with our sanitariums, because these institutions are to have those who know the truth and have learned to sow the seeds of truth and how to minister in the line of the highest principles. If there is not a sense of the delicacy of the work in treating souls, then there is no need of them, because the work of soul-saving is the great influence to fulfill the heaven-appointed tasks. As the benefactor, they need to have their own souls to be under the control of the Spirit of God, not now and then but ever. 17LtMs, Ms 238, 1902, par. 3

Christ was the True Missionary. A flippant physician who supposes his outward display will make him a success is not wanted. There is an influence that must be kept constantly in exercise of refinement and delicacy, of strict purity and lowliness of heart and cleanness of words, in order to fill his heaven-appointed task. A self-made man in and through Jesus Christ is of highest value. He is standing on holy ground. Christ devoted His whole soul and body to save, to restore the moral image of God in man. He completed His matchless sacrifice; He was not one a destroyer, but a Saviour. He died of a broken heart on the cross of Calvary because the perversity of the character of men was so allied to the principles of the prince of darkness. This was His grief-Bthat He could not save many more souls who would labor for the whole world to reform it. He would have men become medical missionaries. 17LtMs, Ms 238, 1902, par. 4

There will have to be inwrought in the souls of those who shall engage in the medical work that self-denial, that sacred sense of the value of the bodies and souls, that there will be a much higher piety than medical men have at the present time; then they will become what they are not now, a school of devoted workers. 17LtMs, Ms 238, 1902, par. 5

The practices of the world in the enormous prices charged will be changed, because it is not just. In the medical practice there is the great need of becoming educated to reach the highest platform as skillful practitioners in soul-saving as well as restoring the bodies. There have been, and will continue to be, works that are a peril to the souls of youthful physicians, because the older physicians need the Holy Spirit's working upon their own souls to make them stand on the platform. Christ has skilled physicians who can stand as God's helping hand in doing their work. We are to combine with the sanitariums a service of charity to the unhealthy, to the most needy, and the suffering ones who would never be able to pay for their treatment. All the grand institutions put up with large expense but Seventh-day Adventists are to make special pains for the suffering class who cannot receive restoration unless they are treated free. Want of money closes the door to fellow mortals though circumstances place them where they should have special attention. Many of these [ones], subject to accidents and disease, may weep and plead, but without avail. Want of money closes the doors for some, and admits a few, but much more must be done in the charity line than has been done. 17LtMs, Ms 238, 1902, par. 6

The Master's life, the pattern life, is our example. Every Sabbath our Master was witnessed speaking words to comfort the sick, to heal their disease. What an example! He never grew weary in His work. The Lord's work was so extensive, so widespread, that the healing He accomplished was beyond computation on the Sabbath day. His practice was the world. 17LtMs, Ms 238, 1902, par. 7

Our sanitariums, however numerous, if conducted in a way that they should be, will be using men under experienced men, and women under experienced women, to educate in practical work. This would save the lives of nurses and patients. 17LtMs, Ms 238, 1902, par. 8

The close application to study for years is not all essential. The taxing the mind with technicalities that many nurses and workers would never use [would] better be devoted to practical learning of how to cure the sick. We need to awaken and we need much more Christlikeness brought into our work. There are those who are young who are graduating as physicians who are unfitted for our sanitariums for their example would be [one] that we could not endorse. When indulged, frivolous girls or foppish young men receive, as is supposed, a physician's diploma and have not learned to deny the temptations that will assail them, they are spoiled for the work of a physician. There is to be no self-indulgent, frivolous ones who shall be engaged in our sanitariums, for they spoil the very work our institutions are reported to have done in them. What they need now is to be converted and then they may have tact to win souls to Christ. 17LtMs, Ms 238, 1902, par. 9