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The Regions Beyond

The church of Christ was organized for missionary purposes. Christian missionary work furnishes the church with a sure foundation, a foundation having this seal, “The Lord knoweth them that are His.” [2 Timothy 2:19.] By it the members are inspired with zeal to deny self, to put forth self-sacrificing efforts to send the truth to the regions beyond. It has a salutary influence upon unbelievers; for as the workers labor under divine supervision, worldlings are led to see the greatness of the resources that God has provided for those who serve Him. We are laid under a most solemn obligation to furnish, in Christian missions, an illustration of the principles of the kingdom of God. The church is to work actively, as an organized body, to spread abroad the influence of the cross of Christ. GW 464.1

God is calling for men who are willing to leave all to become missionaries for Him. And the call will be answered. In every age since the advent of Christ, the gospel commission has impelled men and women to go to the ends of the earth to carry the good news of salvation to those in darkness. Stirred by the love of Christ and the needs of the lost, men have left the comforts of home and the society of friends, even that of wife and children, to go to foreign lands, among idolaters and savages, to proclaim the message of mercy. Many in the attempt have lost their lives, but others have been raised up to carry on the work. Thus step by step the cause of Christ has progressed, and the seed sown in sorrow has yielded a bountiful harvest. The knowledge of God has been extended, and the banner of the cross planted in heathen lands. GW 464.2

There is nothing more precious in the sight of God than His ministers, who go forth into the waste places of the earth to sow the seeds of truth, looking forward to the harvest. None but Christ can measure the solicitude of His servants, as they seek for the lost. He imparts His Spirit to them, and by their efforts souls are led to turn from sin to righteousness. GW 465.1

For the conversion of one sinner, the minister should tax his resources to the utmost. The soul that God has created and Christ has redeemed is of great value, because of the possibilities before it, the spiritual advantages that have been granted it, the capabilities that it may possess if vitalized by the word of God, and the immortality that it may gain through the hope presented in the gospel. And if Christ left the ninety and nine that He might seek and save one lost sheep, can we be justified in doing less? Is not a neglect to work as Christ worked, to sacrifice as He sacrificed, a betrayal of sacred trust? GW 465.2

I feel intensely over the needs of foreign countries, as they have been presented before me. In all parts of the world angels of God are opening doors that a little while ago were closed to the message of truth. From India, from Africa, from China, and from many other places is heard the cry, “Come over and help us.” GW 465.3

To show a liberal, self-denying spirit for the success of foreign missions is a sure way to advance home missionary work; for the prosperity of the home work depends largely, under God, upon the reflex influence of the evangelical work done in countries afar off. It is in working to supply the necessities of others that we bring our souls into touch with the Source of all power. The Lord has marked every phase of missionary zeal that has been shown 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 shown in sending help to foreign fields, where the workers are struggling against great odds to give the light to those who sit in darkness. GW 465.4

That which is given to start the work in one field will result in strengthening the work in other places. As the laborers are freed from financial embarrassment, their efforts can be extended; and as people are brought into the truth and churches are established, there will be increasing financial strength. As these churches grow stronger, they will be able not only to carry on the work in their own borders, but to send help to other fields. GW 466.1