Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 19 (1904)

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Lt 261, 1904

Physicians and Ministers

Nashville, Tennessee

June 1904

Previously unpublished. +Note

To physicians and ministers,—

“Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write: These things saith He that holdeth the seven stars in His right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks: I know thy works, and thy labor, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil; and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars; and hast borne, and hast patience, and for My name’s sake hast labored, and hast not fainted. Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.” [Revelation 2:1-5.] 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 1

“And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write: These things saith He that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars: I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead. Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die; for I have not found thy works perfect before God. Remember therefore how thou hast received, and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee. Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with Me in white; for they are worthy. He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before My Father, and before His angels.” [Revelation 3:1-5.] 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 2

“And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write: These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God: I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot; I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of My mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind and naked; I counsel thee to buy of Me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. As many as I love I rebuke and chasten; be zealous therefore, and repent. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 3

“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock; if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with Me in My throne, even as I also overcame, and am sat down with My Father in His throne. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.” [Verses 14-22.] 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 4

Had God’s people lived up to all the light they have received, standing firm in their integrity, and striving with united efforts to advance God’s cause, thousands upon thousands would have been converted, and the message of warning would have been proclaimed to the world. Our adversaries would have been put to shame; for it would have been seen what the grace of God can accomplish. But the door has been opened to Satan’s devising, and God’s Spirit has been sorely grieved. Pride of heart has been cherished, and self-exaltation has made the church weak and strengthless. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 5

The Laodicean message must be given just as it is. It must be given as a message from heaven. It must be given with earnestness and power. If it be ignored, the Lord will certainly cast away from Him those whose spiritual condition is so objectionable. Christ declares that pretentious piety is nauseating to Him. To the ones so full of self-sufficiency He says, “I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot.” [Verse 15.] Their works are opposed to the holy principles of God’s Word. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 6

My brethren and sisters, will you take heed to the Word of the Lord? Will you listen to His rebuke? If, after men in responsible positions have been warned and reproved by the Lord, they continue to follow their own way, affliction will come upon them. God chastens them, giving them opportunity after opportunity to repent. If they utterly refuse to repent, and are determined to listen to the sophistries of the father of lies and follow his principles in their daily lives, they are left to their own course of action and will surely perish in their sins; for God will not be trifled with. Sufficient light and evidence will be given to every soul. If men are overcome by the enemy, it will be because they have hardened their hearts, refusing to hear the voice of God. Will men hear the word of the Lord, or will they through yielding to temptation refuse to hear, until it becomes impossible for them to discern between good and evil? 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 7

Some of our medical men have been learning lessons that will prove to be their eternal ruin, unless they earnestly seek the Lord. They need to purify their hearts through obeying the truth. A reformation is needed in their lives. Physicians need to set the Lord ever before them, carrying the lamp of life with them wherever they go, or else Satan will use their scientific knowledge to lead them astray. The purest, most Christlike influences must control their lives, else the enemy will lead them to believe that the end justifies the means, and they will do strange things that will make the God of heaven ashamed of them. They will sacrifice principle in order to obtain their desires and will endeavor to bring into the work of God the method of worldlings. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 8

When physicians do this, God says of them, “You have sold the truth, and you must reap the displeasure of heaven. Unless you change, the gates of the holy city will be closed against you. Nothing that you can do has sufficient power to sanctify an unrighteous action.” 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 9

If there be first a willing mind, a way to the sanctuary will be found. But those whose hearts are humble and contrite would not engage in the work that for years has been done in Battle Creek, a work of accusing and condemning of the brethren, and especially of the ministers. It is the powerful influence of the great deceiver that has led to this work. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 10

When men and women realize their own weakness and their entire dependence upon God, a standard of Christianity very different from that which now appears will be seen. God is love. His nature is revealed in His holy law, which is an expression of His love. Let us rejoice that the high and holy One, that inhabiteth eternity, whose ways are from everlasting to everlasting, changes not. With Him there is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 11

“For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end.” [Ephesians 3:14-21.] 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 12

“I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, with all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” [Ephesians 4:1-3.] 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 13

“Be ye therefore followers of God as dear children; walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given Himself for us an offering, and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savor. But fornication, and all uncleanness, and covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints. Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient; but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of God and of Christ.” [Ephesians 5:1-5.] 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 14

We shall pass through trials, but let none become accusers of the brethren. For years the work of accusing has been going on, to the hindrance of God’s cause. Let ministers and physicians confess their own sins, and leave God to deal with the sins of their brethren. Shall we not come into right relation with God? A spirit of criticism, of recrimination, of accusation has been cherished for years. Is it not time to let this spirit be put away? Go to the one whom you think has erred, and speak words that will show him that you are controlled by the Spirit of Christ. The religion of Christ, revealed in the lives of His followers, is a power for good, leading unbelievers to see that God sent His Son into the world to save sinners. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 15

There are a great many things that are weakening the church and spoiling the characters of those after whose names the angels long to write a record of good words and righteous deeds. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 16

There are those who are dishonoring God by forming unchristlike characters. Their course of action robs the church of courage and endangers their own souls. Those who depart from the faith need the forgiveness of the great Medical Missionary, because they have hurt His precious truth and dishonored it before the world. Their course has led unbelievers to argue that the religion of Christ is not free from defects. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 17

Let every one be on guard in regard to his own words and actions. My brethren and sisters, let your words be such that you would not be ashamed to repeat them were Christ standing in person before you. Speak words that will help others in their character-building. We are living in the last days of this earth’s history. I entreat our physicians and ministers to give earnest heed to the admonition to keep guard over their own souls. In the place of watching others, looking for something to condemn, watch yourselves. Guard your lips, that they speak not words that will bring strife and discord. Those who are careless of their words will sow seeds of evil that will spring up and bear an abundant harvest. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 18

I call upon our church members to work for the prosperity of the church. In the place of talking of the defects of others, closely examine yourselves in the light of the Word of God. Deal critically with yourselves. Seek the Lord most earnestly, asking Him to cleanse you from sin. We are laborers together with God. Then work and pray. Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God which worketh in you. You must follow where He guides; else you will make mistakes and lead others astray. 19LtMs, Lt 261, 1904, par. 19