Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 18 (1903)


Ms 83, 1903

Diary/Christ Our Example in Medical Missionary

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

October 29, 1902

Portions of this manuscript are published in MM 21-22; TDG 311; 8T 206-212.

This morning I thank my heavenly Father that I have been able to sleep. During the latter part of the day yesterday I suffered much pain. After retiring, I slept until half-past eleven o’clock. Then my mind was active, and I knew that I could not sleep any more. I dressed and committed my soul to the Lord, praying most earnestly for wisdom, for clearness of mind, and for words to express the matters that were urged upon my attention. Before breakfast time I wrote out in my diary ten pages of instruction. I know that the Lord helped me to trace on paper important matter that should come before His people. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 1

When writing thus, I feel intensely; but after the instruction has been recorded on paper, relief comes to my mind; for I know then that the subject matter presented to me will not be lost, even if I should forget what had been written in my diary. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 2

Oh, that my mind may be enlightened in regard to that which constitutes what is known as medical missionary work! This is a great and important branch of our denominational work. But many souls are being deceived in regard to the purifying, ennobling principles embodied in medical missionary work. Many are laboring under a misconception of the real work of a medical missionary. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 3

That which is most needed by medical missionary workers is the guidance of the Spirit of the Lord. Jesus was the great Medical Missionary. Those who labor as He labored must be spiritually minded. But not all who are doing medical missionary work are exalting the Lord God and His truth. Some are laying on the foundation wood, hay, and stubble, which will not bear the test of proving by fire. Every particle of this kind of material will be consumed. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 4

Many exalt their own ideas—human science, fictitious standards—as truth. Genuine truth was taught by Christ when He was in our world and is spoken of by the apostle Paul as being like gold, and silver, and precious stones—material that is imperishable. “Fire will try every man’s work, of what sort it is.” [1 Corinthians 3:13.] 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 5

Christ came to our world to represent in His life and teachings the character of God. He came as the express image of His Father’s person, not of His essence. He represented the personality of God. Only those who see that the cross is the center of all hope for the human family can understand the precious gospel that Christ taught. By His life and death He taught that only in obedience to God’s commandments is there safety and life and exaltation for man. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 6

In behalf of the human race, Christ came to bear a living testimony that fallen humanity, through faith in His power and efficacy as the Son of God, might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. [2 Peter 1:4.] This word “lust” has many meanings and includes desire for exaltation, power, and worldly honor. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 7

Christ bore the penalty of the transgressor. He alone could be a substitute for the sinner and open the gates of Paradise to the fallen race. He took on Himself not the nature of the angels, but the nature of man. He lived a life untainted by sin and suffered in man’s behalf. “As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” [John 1:12-14.] 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 8

“The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul.” [Psalm 19:7.] God’s law is a transcript of His character and was given to man in the garden of Eden as the rule of obedience. In succeeding ages this law was lost sight of. Hundreds of years after the flood, Abraham was called, and to him was given the promise that his descendants should exalt God’s law. In the course of time the Israelites went into Egypt and were made slaves. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 9

The Lord brought His people out from Egypt after they had sojourned there for nearly four hundred years. Long had the Egyptians treated them as slaves, grievously oppressing them. But we have the history of their deliverance from the oppressive power of that idolatrous nation who acknowledged not God and who refused to hearken unto His voice. God delivered His people by a manifestation of His power to guide and protect His people and to destroy the Egyptian army who sought to overtake them and again enslave them. By mighty acts God revealed Himself to the Egyptians as the Ruler of the Universe, the One who was greater than all the heathen deities. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 10

At Sinai the law was given the second time. In awful grandeur the Lord spoke His precepts, and with His own Almighty finger engraved the decalogue on tables of stone. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 11

Passing down through the centuries to the beginning of the Christian Era we find that there came a time when God’s law must again be impressively revealed and plainly illustrated. And at this time God again gave an unmistakable revelation of His standard of obedience. Could the world have been given a more clear demonstration of God’s infinite hatred of sin and of His fixed determination to punish sinners, than was given in the scenes connected with Calvary’s cross? 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 12

Let us give candid consideration to the facts regarding this revelation. Who was the Sufferer?—God’s only begotten Son. What language could have described God’s love for the human family so forcibly as the act of giving His own sinless Son for our redemption? The Innocent bore the chastisement of the guilty. God’s only Son bore the severest punishment that a human being could have suffered. Upon Him, righteous thou He was, was inflicted God’s wrath because of man’s transgression. What an illustration of God’s love for mankind and of His desire to lead us to obey His precepts! 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 13

Never did Christ deviate one jot or one tittle from loyalty to principle. Never in a single instance did He do anything contrary to the will and authority of His heavenly Father; for He always did those things that pleased His Father. Why did He have to suffer?—Transgressors, claiming to be Christians, acted as agents under Satan’s jurisdiction, and transgressed God’s law. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 14

Our heavenly Father sacrificed His beloved Son, that the fallen race might have an unmistakable expression of His love for them; that they might know that He “so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.” [John 3:16-21.] 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 15

The glory of the Incarnate! Whose lips can frame words to portray the great interest expressed by the Father and the Son in a fallen world in their efforts to bring man back to his allegiance to God? 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 16

Christ was a true Medical Missionary. He gave Himself a whole, ample, effectual sacrifice to save a lost world. When all our medical missionaries shall live the renewed life in Christ Jesus, and shall take His words as meaning all that they are designed to mean, there will be a much clearer and more comprehensive understanding of what constitutes genuine medical missionary work. And yet this line of work can best be understood by practicing it in simplicity. The unfolding of this work will have a deeper meaning to them after they obey the holy law engraven on tables of stone by the finger of God, including the Sabbath commandment, concerning which Christ Himself spoke through Moses to the children of Israel. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 17

“The Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily My Sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you. Ye shall keep the Sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth it shall surely be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people. Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the Sabbath of rest, holy to the Lord: whosoever doeth any work in the Sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death. Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant. It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever: for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day He rested, and was refreshed. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 18

“And He gave unto Moses, when He had made an end of communicating with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God.” [Exodus 31:12-18.] 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 19

None but those who are conscientious students of God’s Word can understand the Bible message that is to be given to our world in these last days. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 20


Christ has said, “He that will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. So shall he be My disciple.” [See Mark 8:34.] Who will accept as the definition of a true missionary, the definition given by Christ in His own words? That which is spoken of here is not a pretended or farcical following of Jesus. He requires His disciples to follow closely in His footsteps, enduring what He endured, suffering what He suffered. He is anxiously waiting to see His professed followers manifest a self-sacrificing spirit. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 21

Can it be possible that our eyes are so fully turned from our Leader that we cannot discern the self-denying character of His life? He was the Majesty of heaven, the King of glory. In order to save a fallen race, He stepped down from His exalted position as Commander of the heavenly host, laid aside His royal robe and kingly crown, clothed His divinity with humanity, and came to a world all seared and marred by the curse. As a babe He entered the world and began life on this earth as the child of humble parents living in poverty in the obscure town of Nazareth. By assuming humanity, He subjected Himself to every temptation wherewith we are tempted. In all points He was tempted like as we are by the arch-deceiver, the one who once stood by His side in the heavenly courts. Now Satan called Christ’s attention to the fact that He, the One who claimed to be the Son of God, was humiliated far beneath His mighty foe. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 22

Conceive, if possible, the picture of Christ’s condition that Satan presented to our Redeemer! Here was the Son of God, a weak human being, subject to Satan’s wiles and fierce assaults. Often the enemy tried to destroy Him, but could not until the period of our Redeemer’s medical missionary work had been accomplished. Then our Saviour suffered a shameful death on the cross. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 23

Christ has tasted death for every man. And every one who receives the Redeemer as a personal Saviour, and chooses to be a partaker with Him of His self-denial and self-sacrifice, and to endure shame for His sake, will understand God’s estimation of what it means to be a medical missionary. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 24

In this age of controversy, many of those upon whom the light of the Saviour’s self-sacrificing life is clearly shining will not live in accordance with heavenly principles. They desire to make a different showing than Christ made. To counteract the influence of these men, we must uplift the Christian standard; for many have turned away from Christlike principles. Truth and righteousness have lost their full meaning to them. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 25

I am warned to allow no man to confuse my testimony; for God’s servants who are doing genuine medical missionary work have a most solemn, sacred responsibility resting upon them to keep in view Christ’s life of unselfish service. They should turn their eyes from everything else and look unto Jesus, the author and finisher of their faith. He is the Source of all light, the Fountain of all heaven’s blessings. To every medical missionary worker I am instructed to say, Follow your Leader. He is the Way, the Truth, the Light, the Life. He is the one whose example we as true medical missionaries must follow. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 26

In this age of diseased piety and perverted principle, those who are converted in life and practice will reveal a healthy and influential spirituality. Those who have a knowledge of the truth as it is revealed in God’s Word must now come to the front. My brethren, God requires this of you. Every jot of your influence is now to be used on the right side. All are now to learn how to stand in defense of truth that is worthy of acceptance. Those who are endeavoring to live the Christ life must call things by the right name and stand in defense of the truth as it is in Jesus. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 27

It behooves every soul whose life is hid with Christ in God to come to the front now. Something is to be done. We are to contend most earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints. The spirit in which truth is defended and the kingdom of God advanced must be as it would be if Christ were on this earth in person. If He were here, He would be drawn out to render a solemn rebuke to many who claim to be medical missionaries but who have not chosen to heed the injunction He has urged upon them—to learn of Him His meekness and lowliness of heart. In the lives of some of those who occupy the highest positions, self has been exalted. Until such ones rid themselves of every desire to uplift self, they cannot clearly discern the character and glory of the great Medical Missionary. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 28

When the Holy Spirit works human minds, there will be a much higher standard in speech, in ministry, and in spirituality in our churches than is now seen. Then our church members will be refreshed by the waters of life, and the laborers, working under the one Head, Christ, will reveal their Master in word, in spirit, in every form of ministry, and will encourage one another in the grand, closing work in which they are engaged. There will be a healthful increase of unity and love, which will bear testimony to the world that God has sent His Son for our redemption. There will be a pruning of the branches of the vine, and a bringing forth of much fruit. The branches that bear not the precious fruit of the Spirit, Christlike words and deeds, will be cut off from the parent-stock. Divine truth will be exalted; and as it shines forth as a lamp that burneth, we shall understand it more and still more fully. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 29

Those who hold the truth in righteousness will arouse and put on the gospel shoes. Their feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace, they will make no false paths in which the lame would be turned out of the way. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 30

God requires every man to stand free and to follow the directions of the Word. In every movement Christ’s followers are to reveal their regard for Christian principles—loving God supremely and their neighbors as themselves; reflecting light and blessing on the pathway of those who are in darkness; comforting those who are cast down; sweetening the bitter waters in the place of giving their fellow pilgrims gall to drink. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 31

We are now to unify and by true medical missionary work prepare the way for our coming King. Let us increase in a knowledge of the truth, and render all excellence and glory due to Him who is One with the Father. Let us seek most earnestly for the heavenly anointing, the Holy Spirit. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 32

The great, holy, precious, testing truths for this time are not the fabrication of any human mind. God has not given to any one man all the power that some by their words and devisings seek to claim in some lines of service. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 33

The truth, appropriated, is genuine philosophy. The incarnation of Christ was essential, in order that we, through belief of the truth, might be sanctified and redeemed. Through His human nature Christ can reach humanity. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 34

We are to have a pure, growing Christianity. In the heavenly courts we are to be pronounced complete in Christ. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 35

“Behold, the Bridegroom cometh! Go ye out to meet Him!” [Matthew 25:6.] Lose no time now in rising and trimming your lamps. Lose no time in seeking perfect unity with one another. Christian unity never means the submerging of the identity of one individual into that of another; nor does it mean that the mind of one is to be led and balanced by the mind of another. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 36

Shall it be said of us, “I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead”? [Revelation 3:1.] Christ has assured us that our Father is more willing to give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him, than parents are to give good gifts to their children. This means that we may enjoy a living connection with Christ. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 37

We must expect difficulties. There is a crown to win, and trials will come. Christ was made perfect in human nature through suffering. All His followers will encounter the enemy many times and be severely tried, but trials develop the Christian graces. 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 38

The following lines seem to portray the Christian’s warfare: 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 39

“I thought that the course of the pilgrim to heaven
Would be bright as the summer and glad as the morn.
Thou show’dst me the path: it was dark and rough,—
All rugged with rock, all tangled with thorn;
I dreamt of celestial rewards and renown;
I grasped at the triumph which blesses the brave;
I asked for the palm branch, the robe, and the crown:
I asked, and Thou showed me a cross and a grave.”
18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 40

—Selected 18LtMs, Ms 83, 1903, par. 41