Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 18 (1903)


Ms 51, 1903

Our Duty to Needy Fields


May 19, 1903 [typed]

Portions of this manuscript are published in 3BC 1153; 17MR 29.

“Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek Me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go ye cannot come; so now I say to you. A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another. ... By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one to another.” [John 13:33-35.] 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 1

For fallen man, the Lord Jesus gave His life. Toward His sheep and lambs, He manifested great tenderness. The heart of the Majesty of heaven was full of kindness and sympathy for the human race. With Christ the heavenly attributes of true politeness, deference, and respect for others were natural graces. The Lord would have all His believing children copy His example of Christian politeness. This is the fragrance of the gospel in action. 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 2

Christ encourages every one to do his best. The work of God is to go forward in a decided manner. Workers for the Master are to labor with an eye single to the glory of God. When the vision is obscured by selfishness, the work will be faulty. God will not sanction selfish dealing. He will not accept the work of stewards who afflict the souls of His heritage, and by selfishness and greed made the work of His laborers doubly hard. The record of many of Christ’s professed followers is spoiled by these sins. Because of this, the work of God is languishing. Because of the selfishness inwrought in the souls of men, the labor of those in difficult fields is made doubly hard. 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 3

Christ’s righteousness goes before those of His followers who do true medical missionary work. The work of God is a solemn work. It is not to be carried on in harmony with worldly customs. Divine and human powers must blend. By the co-operation of God, the medical missionary work may be His helping hand. The medical missionary work is not the head, but the hand. The right hand is a leading member of the body. It may open doors for the entrance of the body, but it is not the whole body. Its work is to help others. 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 4

The action taken that none of the profits of the Sanitarium in Battle Creek shall be used outside the state of Michigan does not meet the mind of the Lord. This should be changed, even though it cost thousands of dollars. By this worldly policy money is kept in one field that should be used in establishing memorials in many places, to stand as witnesses of God’s tender love and compassion for a fallen race. God desires that the workers in difficult places should have facilities where with to make their work a success. No time should be lost in supplying their necessities. 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 5

Angels of God will co-operate with those who render assistance to the needy parts of the Lord’s vineyard. By the co-operation of divine with human agencies, the weakest parts are to be strengthened. When the men who have the oversight of the work see with sanctified discernment, because their eyes are anointed with the heavenly eyesalve, when their hearts are free from selfishness, they will impartially consider all parts of the Lord’s vineyard. 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 6

True happiness may be found in unselfishly striving to help those who need help. God helps the feeble and strengthens those who have no strength. In the fields where the trials and the conflicts and poverty are the greatest, God’s workmen must have increased protection. To those laboring in the heat of the conflict, God says, “The Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand.” [Psalm 121:5.] 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 7

Our Lord adapts Himself to our special needs. He is a shade on our right hand. He walks close by our side, ready to supply all our necessities. He comes very near to those who are engaged in willing service for Him. He knows every one by name. O what assurances we have of the tender love of Christ! When our minds, purified from sin, are enabled better to comprehend the depth of God’s grace, we shall exclaim, “Thy gentleness hath enlarged my understanding, and hath made me great.” 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 8

The Lord sees the needy portions of His vineyard. To one worker is given opportunity to supply what another lacks. If that worker fails to respond to the call of God for what has been entrusted to him, he is regarded in heaven as an unfaithful steward. Then let those to whom God has entrusted means carry out His purposes by helping those who are in need of facilities for doing His work. Many have selfishly closed their eyes to the needs of destitute portions of the vineyard. Lacking clear, sanctified discernment, they have failed to help those toiling in hard fields, where help is most needed. 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 9

Not all who claim to be medical missionaries are doing a work that honors and glorifies God. Self is striving for recognition. Christ’s character is not revealed. Those who are laborers together with God will bear holy fire. But many who are supposed to be doing medical missionary work are handling common fire. Their work should represent God, but His holiness is not a prominent feature of it. 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 10

The great Medical Missionary was exalted because He humbled Himself. He gave himself as an entire holy sacrifice for man. He descended to the very lowest depths of humiliation, that man, when obeying the commands of God, may realize that Christ has trodden the path of self-denial and cross-bearing. The Saviour took upon Himself the infirmities of humanity, and on this earth lived a sinless life that men should have no fear that because of the weakness of human nature they would not be able to overcome. He ascended to heaven to plead for us, that we might be raised to sit together with Him in the heavenly places “far above all principality and power.” [Ephesians 1:21.] 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 11

Through the power imparted to us by Christ, we may be “laborers together with God.” [1 Corinthians 3:9.] For our example, He lived a life filled with grace and sympathy. He united with others in labor, ever treating them with kindness and courtesy. Then should not His followers guard carefully the spirit they manifest toward their fellow laborers? Should they not remember that by cherishing a bitter spirit and speaking harsh words, they co-operate with Satan to make the temptations of others harder to resist? 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 12

Christ lived a life of true humility. When men in responsible positions in the Lord’s work show a dictatorial spirit, speaking harsh words, they make it plain that Christ is not abiding in their hearts, but that they are prompted by Satan. Christ’s little flock is very dear to His heart. He gave His life to save the souls perishing under the shadow of sin and sorrow. He does not always permit His children to have their own way. That we may have fellowship with Him in His sufferings, He permits trials to come to us. If we yield ourselves to Him, our trials will work out for our good. Brethren, if you are in trying circumstances and feel that others fail to help you as they should in the work of God, do your best and do not murmur. The Lord is our exceeding great reward. He will judge with equity. It is not your work to reproach those who hinder the fulfilment of God’s purposes. The time will come when their neglect of duty and the consequences of every selfish action they have performed will stand out vividly before them. 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 13

O how can we cherish sin, when we are standing on the borders of the eternal world? The injunction comes, “Work while it is day: the night cometh when no man can work.” [John 9:4.] 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 14

There is much to be done in new places. Our ministers have spent too much time with the churches, doing that which the church members would do themselves if they were in working order. God will hold the churches responsible for the neglect of the work that might have been done in new fields, had they not kept the ministers from the work they should have done. 18LtMs, Ms 51, 1903, par. 15