Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 21 (1906)


Lt 336, 1906

Brethren in Responsible Positions in Australia

St. Helena, California

October 25, 1906

Portions of this letter are published in 1MR 80-81; 4MR 355. +Note

To the brethren in responsible positions in Australia:

There is one thing that I am bidden to present decidedly before our ministers and physicians. Some physicians who went to Australia from America, especially some who went from Battle Creek, went with the idea that they must make a great display and put on style. Some were heartily received, and the Lord gave them evidence that He was preparing the way for them. But their expenses were made very heavy by their habits of extravagance; and in order to meet these expenses, they resorted to the means of selling various things in connection with their practice. This lessened their influence with the people. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 1

The Lord opened the way for these physicians. Meetings at which they spoke were largely attended. But I was instructed that their influence was not sanctified and that they were not becoming qualified to make a success in their work. The effort to keep up an appearance, as if they were men of wealth, kept them financially embarrassed. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 2

I have been greatly burdened over this matter. Let our physicians study the life of the great Physician, who travelled on foot from place to place. The multitudes who followed Him did not realize that they were listening to the greatest physician who ever ministered to the necessities of humanity. “If any man will come after Me,” Christ said, “let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” [Matthew 16:24.] Those who consent to follow the self-denying Redeemer will be instant in season and out of season. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 3

We sincerely hope and pray that you will not spoil any one of your physicians by offering large wages. Let the work be carried on in such a way that many will be given the opportunity of becoming physicians of souls and bodies. Let there be means in the treasury to be used in taking men from the common walks of life and sending them out to do missionary works in various lines. If the world is to be warned, we need to accept every consecrated worker who has ability to open the Scriptures to those who are in darkness. House-to-house work should be taken up by men and women. Forbid them not, but encourage souls by giving them something to do in circulating our publications, in selling our books and papers. Thus many souls will be converted. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 4

What a wonderful mission was given to the disciples. It was their last week together, and Christ desired to prepare their minds for the coming trial, for the separation that was shortly to take place, for the wicked things they would see Him suffer at the hands of men. This was to be their trial—to see the sufferings of their Lord. He, their Saviour, was to be betrayed by Judas into the hands of wicked men. He was to suffer rejection. But He comforted His disciples with the words of encouragement found in the thirteenth, fourteenth, fifteenth, and sixteenth chapters of John. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 5

With strong, hopeful words the Saviour ended His instruction. Then He poured out His soul in prayer for His disciples. Study this prayer, recorded in the seventeenth chapter of John, praying for an understanding of its meaning from the first verse to the last. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 6

“And now, O Father, glorify Thou Me with Thine own self, with the glory which I had with Thee before the world was. I have manifested Thy name unto the men which Thou gavest Me out of the world: Thine they were, and Thou gavest them Me; and they have kept Thy word. Now they have known that all things whatsoever Thou hast given Me are of Thee; for I have given unto them the words which Thou gavest Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from Thee, and they have believed that Thou didst send Me. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 7

“I pray for them; I pray not for the world, but for them which Thou hast given Me; for they are Thine. And all Mine are Thine, and Thine are Mine; and I am glorified in them. And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to Thee. Holy Father, keep through Thine own name those whom Thou hast given Me, that they may be one, as We are. While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Thy name: those that Thou gavest Me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition, that the Scriptures might be fulfilled. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 8

“And now I come to Thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have My joy fulfilled in themselves. I have given them Thy word, and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I pray not that Thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that Thou shouldest keep them from the evil. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.” [Verses 5-14.] 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 9

Christ does not pray that they may be rich and great and honored, and preferred by the world, or that they may learn to conform to worldly customs. His prayer is, “Keep them from the evil. Keep them from the sinful customs of the world. Set them apart for thyself.” Prosperity of soul is the greatest gain for every child of God. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 10

“Sanctify them though Thy truth; Thy word is truth. As Thou hast sent Me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world, And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.” [Verses 17-19.] 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 11

Christ speaks with the assurance of His divine mission. “Thou hast sent Me into the world.” [Verse 18.] He is the Author of pure and undefiled religion. He speaks with the greatest satisfaction of the commission He has given the disciples. He sent the disciples forth to do the same work that the Father had given Him to do. He promised that superhuman power would attend them in the work that they were to do after His ascension. This work was to begin in Jerusalem, then to extend to Samaria, and from there to the uttermost parts of the world. The world was to be their field of labor. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 12

After His resurrection, “when they were come together they asked of Him, saying, Lord, wilt Thou at this time restore again the kingdom of Israel? And He said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in His own power. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you, and ye shall be witnesses unto Me, both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost parts of the earth. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 13

“When He had spoken these things, while they beheld, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight.” His hands outstretched in blessing upon His disciples, who were to be His representatives in the world, He slowly ascended, accompanied by a multitude of heavenly beings. As the watching disciples strained their eyes to catch the last glimpse of their departing Lord, two angels clad in white appeared before them, and said, “ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, which is taken from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go into heaven.” [Acts 1:6-11.] 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 14

Those outstretched arms represent Christ’s embracing the world. The last look that the disciples saw on the face of Christ was one of love. The blessing that He bequeathed to His disciples included all who should henceforth believe on Him and accept Him as a personal Saviour. “As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them which believe on His name.” [John 1:12.] 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 15

The prayer of Christ is for all God’s ministers. “Sanctify them to Thy service,” Christ prayed. [See John 17:17.] Then their credentials will be ratified in heaven. Qualify them for their office in the ministry. I have called them. They have consented to take up the work that is to be done. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 16

When the sacredness of Christ’s character is brought into the daily life, God is glorified. In the work of the gospel minister, the same proofs are to be given that Christ gave in His work. All who accept the responsibility of working as physicians and ministers are to perfect their efforts through the sanctification of the truth. Sanctification means purification. The wisdom that comes from above is first pure, then peaceable. It is only thus that they can be qualified to do the work that Christ did in the world in proclaiming the truth. The Word of God, obeyed, is the divine revelation that works in heart and mind and sanctifies the soul. The words of truth are to be cherished. Not one charge given by God is to be disregarded. If obeyed, the Word will restrain every evil thought, word, and act. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 17

I am instructed to say to all whom Christ sends into the work: He will help you in all things to carry out His commission in holiness and truth. No human oddities are to be brought in. No expressions of sang-froid are to be heard; for such things detract from the sacredness of the truth that is being presented. It is the Word of God that our ministers are to give to the people, and they must give it in pure language. Not one cheap word is to be mixed up with the words of truth. Some suppose that sarcastic expressions will increase the interest of the hearers, but they lower the speaker in the minds of the hearers. The cheap, common words uttered destroy in many minds the effect of the discourse. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 18

The truth is to be practiced in all its sacredness as the words of eternal life. Its holiness and purity are to be a savor of life unto life. Then let the lips be kept pure from all common utterances. True holiness is the fruit of Christ’s death. It was by this infinite sacrifice that the Holy Spirit was purchased for the human family. Christ gave Himself to His church, that through obedience to the sacred words of truth the members might receive His sanctification. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 19

He who designed the salvation of the souls of men requires that all who minister in word and doctrine should be sanctified through the truth. Christ came to bear witness to the words of eternal life. He endured in our behalf the most humiliating suffering that human nature can endure. He died to confirm the truth. And the minister or physician who handles the Word of truth should receive its sanctifying virtue. Then let them not destroy this holy influence by bringing into their work commercial interests. Christ died for us. Let us ever be as true as steel to the principles that will stand through eternal ages. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 20

When there is so much at stake, let our speakers keep every expression free from anything that would cast a slur upon them as servants of Christ or mar the impression made by the truth they are presenting. Let them keep all commonness out of their discourses; for commonness lessens their influence and brings them down to a low level. It leaves upon minds an impression that God cannot approve. By commonness of speech or action, the minister may strike a decided blow against the sacred impression that God would have left on minds. We must give evidence of the sanctifying influence of the truth by letting our words be well chosen and elevating, clothed with dignity and Christlike grace. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 21

Christ prayed for all who are His. For this is His will, even their sanctification. “Sanctify them through Thy truth; Thy word is truth.” “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on Me through their word; that they all may be one; as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us; that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me. And the glory which Thou gavest Me, I have given them; that they may be one, even as We are one: I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that Thou hast sent Me, and hast loved them, as Thou hast loved me.” [Verses 17, 20-23.] 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 22

What a prayer was this. If it had not been possible for this unity to be, Christ would not have offered such a prayer. “I in them, and Thou in Me,” He said, “that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that Thou hast sent Me, and hath loved them as Thou hast loved Me.” [Verse 23.] This seems almost impossible. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 23

Who are included in the prayer of Christ? “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on Me through their word.” [Verse 20.] The company present at the time, the eleven, the seventy, and the large numbers who followed Christ from day to day were included in this prayer. And not these only, but all who in every future generation should unite themselves to Christ through hearing the truth. His prayer was uttered for all generations to come. His great desire is that all who believe in Him may be one, that all may receive the benefits of the truth. He prayed for them all, that they all might be one. Let us strive for this oneness, for it is the evidence we are to bear to the world that we are one with the Father. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 24

“Father, I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory, which Thou hast given Me; for Thou lovest Me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, the world hath not known Thee; but I have known Thee, and these have known that Thou hast sent Me. And I have declared unto them Thy name, and will declare it; that the love wherewith Thou hast loved Me may be in them, and I in them.” [Verses 24-26.] 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 25

The glory of the Redeemer constitutes the brightness of heaven. The glory before which angels cover their faces is Christ’s glory. The Lamb is the light of the New Jerusalem. “And I saw no temple therein; for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it; and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honor into it. And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day; for there shall be no night there, and they shall bring the glory and honor of the nations into it. And there shall in no wise enter into it anything that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie; but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.” [Revelation 21:22-27.] 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 26

We are all to strive for unity. “A new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in Him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth. He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now. He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him. But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes.” [1 John 2:8-11.] 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 27

The prejudice cherished in the human mind is Satan’s great lever for causing dissension. The time has come when the enemy is constantly working to this end. Do not allow tattling in the church. If it has been indulged, expel it now. Let all seek to bar the way against Satan by answering the prayer of Christ. Guard the tongue; guard the lips; and live the humble life that Christ lived. He is the one true Pattern of righteousness. Let every soul humble himself, and remember that many souls will be called from the lowly walks of life to become Christ’s disciples. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 28

May the Lord give you wisdom and good judgment; for the enemy will press in everywhere that he has opportunity. 21LtMs, Lt 336, 1906, par. 29