Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 21 (1906)


Lt 330, 1906

Cobb, S. M.

St. Helena, California

October 23, 1906

Portions of this letter are published in 2SM 198-199. +Note

Elder S. M. Cobb

Dear Brother Cobb:

I feel impressed to write to you this morning and ask you that you be sure to treat all men with equity. I have been instructed that there is danger of your taking a course with some physicians that will be an injury to them. We are to do all in our power to encourage ministerial talent, and also that of physicians, by giving them every consistent advantage; but there is a limit beyond which we should not go. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 1

When we were trying to find a physician to act as medical superintendent of the Loma Linda Sanitarium, one experienced physician consented to come upon certain conditions. He stated a certain amount for his services and said that he would not come for less. Some thought that, because it seemed so difficult to find any one, we might invite this physician on his terms. But I said to Brother Burden, It would not be right to employ this Doctor, and pay him so much, when others who are working just as faithfully receive less. This is not justice, and the Lord has instructed me that He would not approve of such discrimination. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 2

The Lord calls for self-denial in His service, and this obligation is binding upon physicians as well as upon ministers. We have before us an aggressive work which requires means; and we must call into service young men to labor as ministers and as physicians, not for the highest wages, but because of the great needs of God’s cause. The Lord is not pleased with this spirit of grasping for the highest wages. We need physicians and ministers whose hearts are consecrated to God and who receive their marching orders from the greatest Medical Missionary that has ever trod this earth. Let them behold His life of self-denial, and then gladly sacrifice, in order that more workers may engage in sowing the gospel seed. If all will work in this spirit, less wages will be required. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 3

Some have failed on this point. God has blessed them with ability to do acceptable service, but they have failed to learn lessons of economy, of self-denial, and of walking humbly with God. Their demands for high wages were granted, and they became extravagant in the use of means; they lost the influence for good they should have had, and the prospering hand of God was not with them. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 4

I am fearful that some in New Zealand who are demanding large wages will bring in an influence that will be detrimental to the medical missionary work. It is not show nor much talk that gives success. Beware of placing too great confidence in those who demand high wages before they will engage in the Lord’s work. I write you this as a caution. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 5

Brother Cobb, be sure to council freely with your brethren in the work. Make a careful study of what is involved in missionary work. Missionaries must learn humility, and they must learn constantly of the great Medical Missionary. A great work lies before us, but it must be done after Christ’s order. The third angel’s message is to go forth with power. There needs to be a through work done in the hearts of many who are acting a prominent part in the work of God, but who are not now thoroughly consecrated. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 6

The apostle John once wrote to Gaius, commending to his hospitality certain brethren who were preaching the gospel to the Gentiles. Notwithstanding the request of John that these brethren should be received and entertained by the church of which Gaius was a member, Diotrephes had hindered their reception and had even persecuted and cast out of the church those who did receive them. These strangers were not influential men; and in his feeling of self-superiority, Diotrephes considered it his privilege to treat them disrespectfully. John wrote upon this matter, reproving the action of those who had so failed in courtesy. Their example was not one that should be followed. A kind reception should always be given to God’s missionaries. John says: 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 7

“The elder unto the well-beloved Gaius, whom I love in the truth. Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. For I rejoiced greatly when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in the truth. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in the truth. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 8

“Beloved, thou doest faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren, and to strangers: which have borne witness of thy charity before the church: whom if thou bring forward on their journey after a godly sort, thou shalt do well: because that for His name’s sake they went forth, taking nothing of the Gentiles. We therefore ought to receive such, that we might be fellow helpers to the truth. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 9

“I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the pre-eminence among them, receiveth us not. Wherefore if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words; and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 10

“Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God. Demetrius hath good report of all men, and of the truth itself: yea, and we also bear record; and ye know that our record is true. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 11

“I had many things to write, but I will not with pen and ink write unto thee: but I trust I shall shortly see thee, and we shall speak face to face.” [3 John 1-14.] 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 12

In the providence of God, some have been blessed with means and with conveniences, that they may act as benefactors, working together with God. Some of these are so attached to their homes that they cannot be induced to leave to engage in service that takes them away. Let an effort be made to persuade them to help in the support of a substitute. There should be with all a hearty willingness to support the cause of God. Let all be careful in the expenditure of means in every line, that they may save as much as possible to help in the advancement of the work of God. All may give donations, and some may help by exercising hospitality to those who are strangers and pilgrims. The time has come when God will call men from the plow, and from humble positions, to teach Bible truth. Large donations are needed to aid in the carrying forward of the work of preaching the gospel at home and also among the heathen in foreign countries. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 13

When the work is begun in a new country, and a few accept the light of present truth, it is not best to ask them at once to support the work in their field. Support should be sent from Christians in the home field. Genuine Christians will, as God has prospered them, respond to calls for help. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 14

There are many in the churches of today who seek for the pre-eminence. They lack the spirit of true self-sacrifice. Some are opposed to those who exercise their private judgment, and they stand directly in the way to hinder those who do missionary work, simply because these gospel workers will not follow the finite judgment of these critics. In the day when God shall render to every man according as his work shall be, they will see that God has honored those with whom they refused to unite. The Lord’s servants, who are in close touch with the great Chief Missionary, will be kind and will manifest true Christian politeness. 21LtMs, Lt 330, 1906, par. 15