The Publishing Ministry


Section 2—Establishment and Operation of Publishing Houses

Chapter 5—A Sacred Work

Proclaim Divine Message to All the World—I am bidden to say to our publishing houses. Lift up the standard; lift it up. Proclaim the third angel's message, that all the world may hear, and know that there is a people who “keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” Let our literature give the divine message as a witness to all the world. PM 57.1

Now, as never before, the great and wonderful work of this message is to be carried on. The world is to receive the light, and many will gain their knowledge of the truth through an evangelizing ministry of the word in our books and papers. Our periodicals are to be distributed by men and women of all stations and walks in life. Young and old are to act a part. These publications are to show that the end of all things is at hand. PM 57.2

We have, as it were, been asleep regarding this matter. Let us now send forth the word with determined energy, that the world may understand the messages that Christ gave to John on the Isle of Patmos. PM 57.3

Let everyone professing the name of Christ act a part in sending forth the message, “The end of all things is at hand”; “prepare to meet thy God.” Our publications should go everywhere. The circulation of our periodicals should be greatly increased. The third angel's message is to be given through gospel literature, and through the living teacher. You who believe the truth for this time, wake up. It is our duty now to employ every possible means to help in the proclamation of the truth. When you are riding on the cars, visiting, conversing with your neighbors—wherever you are, let your light shine forth. Hand out the papers and tracts to those with whom you associate, and speak a word in season, praying that the Holy Ghost will make the seed productive in some hearts. This work will be blessed of God.—SpTPW 231, 232. PM 57.4

Sacredness of God's Instrumentalities—There are many who recognize no distinction between a common business enterprise, as a workshop, factory, or cornfield, and an institution established especially to advance the interests of the cause of God. But the same distinction exists that in ancient times God placed between the sacred and the common, the holy and the profane. This distinction He desires every worker in our institutions to discern and appreciate. Those who occupy a position in our publishing houses are highly honored. A sacred charge is upon them. They are called to be workers together with God. They should appreciate the opportunity of so close connection with the heavenly instrumentalities and should feel that they are highly privileged in being permitted to give to the Lord's institution their ability, their service, and their unwearying vigilance. They should have a vigorous purpose, a lofty aspiration, a zeal to make the publishing house just what God desires it to be—a light in the world, a faithful witness for Him, a memorial of the Sabbath of the fourth commandment.—Testimonies for the Church 7:191. PM 58.1

God is to be brought into every pursuit of life. With every enterprise He is concerned. But He is especially interested in the various branches of His work, and in the institutions consecrated to their advancement. The offices of publication, by means of which the truth is to be given to the world, are sacred to His service.—The Review and Herald, July 1, 1902. PM 58.2

Publishing House Belongs to God—Where are the special monuments of God's workings among men, if not in our institutions, which are His instrumentalities to preserve the knowledge of His honor and glory, that His name should be feared? The publishing house has been solemnly dedicated to God. It should be looked upon as the Lord's, a place where His work is being done and where men are to walk uprightly, being divested of selfishness and covetousness, which is idolatry. PM 58.3

If after a sufficient period of trial it is found that any of the workers have not a conscientious regard for sacred things; if they slight the messengers whom God sends; if they turn their hearts away from the message and show no interest in the special work for this time, they should be separated from the work, and others should be chosen to engage in it who will receive the light God sends to His people and will walk in the light.—Manuscript 29, 1895. PM 59.1

Exalted and Solemn Character of God's Work—Many have failed to realize the sacredness of the work in which they are engaged. Its exalted character should be kept before the workers, both by precept and example. Let all read the directions given by Christ to Moses, requiring every man to be in his place and to do the part of the work to which he was appointed and set apart. If in putting up or taking down the tabernacle any man was found out of his place, or ventured upon any officious action, in handling the sacred ark or bearing it, that man was put to death.—Manuscript 29, 1895. PM 59.2

To Be Guarded as Jealously as the Ark—Both the members of the church and the employees in the publishing house should feel that as workers together with God they have a part to act in guarding His institution. They should be faithful guardians of its interests in every line, seeking to shield it, not only from loss and disaster, but from all that could profane or contaminate. Never through act of theirs should its fair fame be tarnished, even by the breath of careless criticism or censure. God's institutions should be regarded by them as a holy trust, to be guarded as jealously as the ark was guarded by ancient Israel.—Testimonies for the Church 7:192, 193. PM 59.3

The Lord Jehovah's Presence in Every Office—The Lord Jehovah's presence is to be recognized in every room of the office, as His voice was recognized by Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. The Lord comes to His own place in the Review and Herald office, [By the “office” was meant the Review and Herald publishing house and/or the church headquarters, which was housed at that time in the west building of the printing plant in Battle Creek.] from whence should go forth the blessings of the light from His presence, imbuing with His Spirit every worker who is doing His service, that not a trace of Satan's attributes shall be revealed in the look of the eye, the hearing of the ear, the words spoken or the attitude taken. PM 59.4

Those in authority are to say by their demeanor, “I am a teacher, an example. That which I have seen Christ do, by the eye of faith and the intelligence of my understanding, as I have read the precious lessons that fell from His divine lips, I am, as a learner of His meekness and lowliness of heart, to reveal to all with whom I am brought in contact. This will be the best illustration I can possibly give to those who are connected with me as apprentices, who are to learn how to perform pure, clean, unadulterated service, free from the common fire, the worldly theories, and common maxims which are prevalent in business houses.”—Letter 150, 1899. PM 60.1

Angel Supervisors in the Publishing House—The machinery may be run by men who are skillful in its management; but how easy it would be to leave one little screw, one little part of the machinery, out of order, and how disastrous might be the result! Who has prevented casualties? The angels of God have supervision of the work. If the eyes of those who run the machinery could be opened, they would discern the heavenly guardianship. In every room in the publishing house where work is done, there is a witness taking note of the spirit in which it is performed, and marking the fidelity and unselfishness revealed.—Testimonies for the Church 7:192. PM 60.2

I have seen the angels of God passing from room to room, noting the articles that were being published, noting every word and action of the workmen. Their faces were lighted with joy, and their hands were outstretched in blessing. PM 60.3

But the angels of God are grieved at every manifestation of a harsh spirit. God has given to every one a mind and an experience, possibly a higher experience than ours. We need to learn of Christ to be meek and lowly in heart. “Ask, and ye shall receive; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.”—Manuscript 73, 1906. PM 60.4

The conversation carried on in the office should be elevating, far removed from all trifling and nonsense. There is so much common conversation. The Lord desires everything connected with His service to stand on an elevated plane. Remember that angels are walking through the office.—Manuscript 81, 1901. (See also Testimonies for the Church 3:191, 192.) PM 61.1

The Workers’ Perfect Model—Those in the office who profess to believe the truth should show the power of the truth in their lives and prove that they are working onward and upward from the basis of principle. They should be molding their lives and characters after the perfect Model.... PM 61.2

The Lord requires all in the office to labor from high motives. In His own life, Christ has given them an example. All should labor with interest, devotion, and faith for the salvation of souls. If all in the office will labor with unselfish purposes, discerning the sacredness of the work, the blessing of God will rest upon them.—Testimonies for the Church 3:190, 191. PM 61.3

The Tragic Results of Unfaithful Witnessing—Marcus Lichtenstein [a young Jewish student employed in the Review office who became discouraged as the result of what he saw in the inconsistent lives of some publishing workers.] was a God-fearing youth; but he saw so little true religious principle in those in the church and those working in the office that he was perplexed, distressed, disgusted. He stumbled over the lack of conscientiousness in keeping the Sabbath manifested by some who yet professed to be commandment keepers. Marcus had an exalted regard for the work in the office; but the vanity, the trifling, and the lack of principle stumbled him. God had raised him up and in His providence connected him with His work in the office. But there is so little known of the mind and will of God by some who work in the office that they looked upon this great work of the conversion of Marcus from Judaism as of no great importance. His worth was not appreciated. He was frequently pained with the deportment of F and of others in the office; and when he attempted to reprove them, his words were received with contempt that he should venture to instruct them. His defective language was an occasion of jest and amusement with some. PM 61.4

Marcus felt deeply over the case of F, but he could not see how he could help him. Marcus never would have left the office if the young men had been true to their profession. If he makes shipwreck of faith, his blood will surely be found on the skirts of the young who profess Christ, but who, by their works, their words, and their deportment, state plainly that they are not of Christ, but of the world. This deplorable state of neglect, of indifference, and unfaithfulness, must cease; a thorough and permanent change must take place in the office, or those who have had so much light and so great privileges should be dismissed and others take their places, even if they be unbelievers.... A profession is not enough. There must be a work inwrought in the soul and carried out in the life.—Testimonies for the Church 3:192, 193. PM 62.1

Caring for the Spiritual Welfare of Others—There are positions where some can earn better wages than at the office, but they can never find a position more important, more honorable, or more exalted than the work of God in the office. Those who labor faithfully and unselfishly will be rewarded. For them there is a crown of glory prepared, compared with which all earthly honors and pleasures are as the small dust of the balance. Especially will those be blessed who have been faithful to God in watching over the spiritual welfare of others in the office.... PM 62.2

The soul is of infinite value and demands the utmost attention. Every man who fears God in that office should put away childish and vain things, and, with true moral courage, stand erect in the dignity of his manhood, shunning low familiarity, yet binding heart to heart in the bond of Christian interest and love.—Testimonies for the Church 3:194. PM 62.3