Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 23

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Ms 11, 1908

The Regions Beyond

St. Helena, California

February 15, 1908

Portions of this manuscript are published in Ev 19-20, 60, 428; MM 322-323; 6BC 1104; 1MR 192-193. +Note

The Lord has marked every phase of the missionary zeal that has been manifested by His people in behalf of foreign fields. He designs that in every home, in every church, and at all the centers of the work, a spirit of liberality shall be exercised in sending help to foreign countries, where the workers are struggling against great odds to communicate light to the people who sit in darkness. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 1

Christ calls upon every human agency to co-operate with Him in His work of restoration. The express image of the Father, He came to earth that He might restore the moral image of God in man. Through Him, fallen man may take hold of divinity, cultivate His grace and perfection, and through Him become partaker of the divine nature. Learning obedience to the law of God, man may be stamped with perfection of character, the image of the divine. Behold Christ in His earthly life, raising up the fallen, bringing hope to the hopeless, and placing the feet of the straying ones in sure paths. This is He whom we are to copy and serve. He will imbue every sincere worker with His grace; for He knows the needs of every soul; and He is a pitying Elder Brother. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 2

Every believer should feel himself greatly favored in being called a child of God. God is not in His holy place in a state of solitary grandeur, but is surrounded by ten thousands of His angels who wait to do His bidding. The Father is represented as bending from His throne earthward, to listen to the cries of His children. He sends divine help to every needy, praying, believing soul. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 3

We have cause for deep gratitude that our heavenly Father knows our needs, and that He does not appoint erring man to rule in His service, and to follow their own inclinations as the dispensers of His goods. Should He do this, He would open the way for selfishness to rule in His work. Men are prone to make mistakes in the disposition of the treasures entrusted to them. They are inclined to follow their human impulses, giving to one a special preference, while to another fully as worthy they may choose to give a meager consideration. If such principles were allowed to rule, great dishonor would be done to God, and cries of wretchedness and suffering would come up to Him. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 4

If we would be workers together with God, we must be fitted for His service by an individual consecration and sanctification to His will. We need to experience daily in our souls an unfailing flow of His goodness and love; then we can be ministers of righteousness and goodness to men. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 5

“Son of man,” the prophet Ezekiel writes, “I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore hear the word at My mouth, and give them warning from Me. When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood will I require at thine hand. Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul. Again, when a righteous man doth turn from his righteousness, and commit iniquity, and I lay a stumblingblock before him, he shall die; because thou hast not given him warning, he shall die in his sin; and his righteousness which he hath done shall not be remembered; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Nevertheless if thou warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he doth not sin, he shall surely live, because he is warned; also thou hast delivered thy soul.” [Ezekiel 3:17-21.] In these words there is no encouragement for the worker who is unfaithful in his labors. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 6

I have recently been reading something that I wrote in Australia regarding our experiences in foreign fields. In reviewing our experiences in that field, I see how much more might have been accomplished could we have had more financial help at a time when the field was ready for advance moves. But there was such a dearth of means that we could not extend our labors as we desired. Brethren, let not selfish motives lead you to withhold the funds that are needed in unworked fields. When we are tempted to withhold that which is needed in foreign fields, let us study the eighth and ninth chapters of Second Corinthians, and learn to emulate the liberal spirit which made the Macedonians willing to give “beyond their power” to the cause that called for their assistance. [2 Corinthians 8:3.] 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 7

I have had presented to me the danger of withholding the tithe that should be used for the working of new fields. There is means now tied up that should be in use for the unworked cities in Europe, <Australia>, and America, and in the regions beyond. These cities have been neglected for years. The angels of God are waiting for us to give our labors for their inhabitants. From town to town, from city to city, from country to country, the warning message is to be proclaimed, not with outward display, but in the power of the Spirit, by men of faith. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 8

And it is necessary that the best kind of labor be given. The time has come, the important time, when through God’s messengers the scroll is being unrolled to the world. The truth comprised in the first, second, and third angels’ messages must go to every nation, kindred, tongue, and people; it must lighten the darkness of every continent and extend to the islands of the sea. Nothing of human invention must be allowed to retard this work. That this may be accomplished, there is need of cultivated and consecrated talent; there is need of persons who can do excellent work in the meekness of Christ, because self is hid in Christ. Novices cannot acceptably do the work of unfolding the hidden treasures to enrich souls in spiritual things. “Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things. ... Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” [2 Timothy 2:7, 15.] 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 9

Let there be the wisest planning for the success of the work. Decided efforts should be made to open new fields in the north, the south, the east, and the west. The need of thoroughly warning the cities is a work that has been brought before us for the last twenty years. The longer these cities are neglected, the more difficult will it be to reach the people; but if a thorough work is done, and done speedily, there will be conversions to the truth. The fact that the presentation of the truth has been so long neglected should appeal to our ministers and workers to enter these fields and not give up the work until they have clearly given the message. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 10

All the preaching in the world will not make men feel deeply the need of perishing souls around them. Nothing will so arouse in men and women a self-sacrificing zeal as to send them forth into new fields to work for those in darkness. Prepare workers to go out in the highways and hedges. We need wise nurserymen who will transplant trees to different localities and give them advantages that they may grow. It is the positive duty of God’s people to go into the regions beyond. Let forces be set at work to clear new ground, to establish new centers of influence wherever an opening can be found. Rally workers who possess true missionary zeal, and let them go forth to diffuse light and knowledge far and near. Let them take the living principles of health reform into the communities that to a large degree are ignorant of these principles. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 11

There should be no delay in this work. Workers should be chosen who are fully consecrated, and who understand the sacredness and importance of the work. Do not send those who are not qualified in these respects. We want men who will push the triumphs of the cross; men who will persevere under discouragements and privations; men who will have the zeal and resolution and faith that are indispensable in the missionary field. And to those who do not engage personally in the work, I would say, Do not hinder those who are willing to work, but give them your encouragement and support. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 12

After a time, as the work advances, schools will be established in many cities, where workers can be quickly educated and trained for service. The students and their teachers can go out with our publications and spread the truth by means of the printed page. Desirable places can be secured for meetings to be held, and here the people can be invited to gather. Let those who are fitted for the work, the young and the middle aged, act a disinterested, unselfish part in laboring for the fields white for the harvest that are yet unworked. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 13

In following up the interest after a camp-meeting, helpers are needed in various lines, and these occasions should be as a training school for workers. Let young men work in connection with experienced laborers who will pray with them and patiently instruct them. Consecrated women should engage in Bible work from house to house. Some of the workers should act as colporteurs, selling our literature, and giving judiciously to those who cannot buy. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 14

Many young men who have had the right kind of education at home are to be trained for service and encouraged to lift the standard of truth in new places by well-planned and faithful work. These young men, by associating with our ministers and experienced workers in city work, will gain the best kind of training. Acting under divine guidance, and sustained by the prayers and counsel of their more-experienced fellow workers, they may do a good and blessed work. As they unite their labors with those of the older workers, using their youthful energies to the very best account, they will have the companionship of heavenly angels; and as workers together with God, it is their privilege to sing and pray and believe and work with courage and with freedom. The confidence and trust that the presence of heavenly agencies will bring to them and to their fellow workers will lead to prayer and praise and the simplicity of true faith. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 15

I am instructed to point our ministers to the unworked cities and to urge them by every possible means to open the way for the presentation of the truth. In some of the cities where the message of the second coming of the Lord was first given, we are compelled to take up the work as if we were in a new country. How much longer will these barren fields, these unworked cities, be passed by? Without delay, the sowing of the seed should begin in many, many places. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 16

I have been instructed that there is something wrong in the way that financial matters have been carried in some of our conferences. I was shown that spiritual interests have been lost sight of and that the very work that is most essential and urgent has been neglected and bears the mark of imperfection. The zeal exercised by some in gathering and hoarding as much means as possible to make a good showing financially, and that men in important positions might appear as good generals, was a sad mistaking of the true interests of the work. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 17

More and more we must come to realize that the means that comes into the conference in the tithes and gifts of our people should be used for the support of the work, not only in the American cities, but also in foreign fields. Let the means so zealously collected be unselfishly distributed. Those who realize the needs of mission fields will not be tempted to use the tithe for that which is not necessary. All may be tempted to be selfish in the use of their means, but they will gain strength to resist these temptations as they study the needs of the fields that have little labor given them. My brethren, let your means be freely given, and the Lord will bless your offerings. God is looking for these offerings, and angels of God are impressing the hearts of those for whose sake they are given. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 18

I leave this matter with you, urging you to work in faith and clearness of mind. To be teachable in spirit is to be wise unto salvation. 23LtMs, Ms 11, 1908, par. 19