The General Conference Bulletin


April 5, 1901

In the Regions Beyond


The Lord is our helper, and in humility of soul we should send to heaven our most earnest petitions, asking him to mold and fashion us in accordance with his character. We can not depend upon others to do this work for us. We must work out our own salvation with fear and trembling. Angels of God are round about us, ready to help every one who will walk carefully and prayerfully and in humility before the Lord God of Israel. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 1

We have a large field to work. To the disciples the Lord Jesus gave the commission, “Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature,” and he added, “I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” He will be with us to the very end. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 2

Our mission is a very sacred and important one, but we have come to place more confidence in human judgment than in the Lord God of Israel. Therefore God says, I am afraid of you. He desires his work to move harmoniously. There is a great work to be done. Before I left my home in Cooranbong there were many nights when it was impossible for me to sleep. The burden upon my soul was very great. I did not want to leave my home unless I had a special assurance that the Lord God of Israel was my Helper and my God. I have had this assurance. On my journey to this place from California the Lord was especially near me, and notwithstanding my feebleness and suffering, I filled every appointment save one. I am more thankful to God than I can express that he has so graciously protected me. Since I have come here he has given me strength, and I put my dependence upon him. I have no strength in myself. I desire to move in the counsel of God. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 3

This meeting will determine the character of our work in the future. How important that every step taken is taken under the supervision of God. This work must be carried in a very different manner to what it has been in the past years. There is a great work to be done in all fields. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 4

When we come into the congregation here at Battle Creek, we see large numbers. In the night seasons One was standing among us, saying, Who sent you here? From what place did you come? What are you doing to remedy the congested state of things in Battle Creek? GCB April 5, 1901, par. 5

There is a world to save. What are you doing to save that world? From Australia I have tried to send over the word that God wants every one to stand at his post, working out the divine will in the saving of souls. There are those who need to know the truth. From the light given me, there are those who are gathering up the tithe and using it to do work; but where is the fruit? And yet the message is sent to Australia that the work there has received more than its share of help. In establishing the work there we had everything to do. Here in America were great institutions. Building after building was erected. We were thankful when we succeeded in building a little meeting-house, of the simplest style, in Cooranbong. In erecting this building, the best workmen labored for a dollar and a half a day, and then gave half of that to help in the work. Some of these were men who had newly come into the truth, and we were thankful that they were willing to make this sacrifice. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 6

In the work in Australia, we have exercised the strictest economy, that we might place the work on vantage ground. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 7

From the light God has given me, there must be a decided change in the management of things at the heart of the work. There are unworked fields all around us. Who has entered these fields? Who has carried the burden of them? Who has been striving to annex new territory? When workers sent by God have entered the darkest and most unpromising places, have not stones been placed in the way of their progress? Have not efforts been made to tie their hands, so that they could do nothing? God declares that when he sends workers to any place, they are under his supervision. It is not in his order that two or three men shall plan for the whole Conference, and decide how the tithe shall be used, as though the tithe were a fund of their own. Let men be careful how they shall put their hands upon the work, and say, We can not help. In the night season I have been in congregations where appeals for help were made. The people were ready to help, but those leading out in the work spoke words of caution, saying, We shall need that means. Thus the help that would have been given was not given. If those who spoke the words of caution had known how the workers in new fields, where there are no buildings, no institutions, had spent hours in earnest prayer before God, asking for help to meet the responsibilities coming upon them, they would not have spoken as they did. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 8

Then, too, from some quarter comes the report that the workers in Australia are doing just as has been done in Battle Creek. But those who go to Australia know better than this. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 9

God wants men to come to their senses. When they do this, they will have the mind of Christ. They will understand that there is a great work to be done, that there are other places besides America in the world. Those who have worked upon wrong principles are amenable to God for the condition of the work in foreign fields. We in Australia could not press the work there as it should have been pressed. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 10

I pledged myself that if I came to America, I would speak the truth in California and in Battle Creek. My husband and I were the pioneers in the work in Battle Creek, and in connection with Elder Loughborough we established the work in California. In the starting of the work in Oakland, we came to the place where we must have means; and we did not know what to do. My husband was sick and feeble, and very busy. I said, “Will you let me go to Battle Creek to try to raise some money for the work here.” “How can you go?” he said. “I am overwhelmed with responsibility. I can not let you go.” “But God will take care of you,” I said. We held a meeting in an upper room of a house in Oakland, where prayer was wont to be made. We knelt down to pray, and while we were praying, the Spirit of God like a tidal wave filled the room, and it seemed that an angel was pointing across the Rocky Mountains to the churches in this part of America. Brother Tay, who is now sleeping in Jesus, rose from his knees, his face as white as death, and said, “I saw an angel pointing across the Rocky Mountains.” Then my husband said, “Well, Ellen, I shall have to let you go.” I did not wait for another word, but hurrying home, put a few gems in a basket, and hastened to the cars. I made very little preparation, for I had just time to get to the cars. Weeping like a child, my husband said, “If I had not said you could go, I do not think I could say it now, but I have said it, and I will not take it back.” GCB April 5, 1901, par. 11

I went alone, and at that time it took us eight days to go across the continent. I went to the different camp-meetings and bore my testimony, calling for means to establish the work in Oakland and California. We were not disappointed. I obtained means, and then returned to California to build up the work. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 12

I told the Lord that when I came to Battle Creek this time, I would ask you why you have withheld means from the work in Australia. The work there should have been pressed with ten fold greater strength than it has been, but we have been hindered on the right hand and on the left. And then they say, You have had more than your proportion of help. Who told you so? Did the Lord? The people would have given of their means if men had not hedged up the way. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 13

Why am I telling you this? Because we desire that at this meeting the work shall be so established that no such thing shall take place again. Two or three men, who have never seen the barren fields where the workers have had to wrestle with all their might to advance an inch, should not control matters. They know nothing of our experience in Australia. There I could not appeal to large congregations. I could not go for help to places where my husband and I labored earnestly to establish the work. If I had not a right, in the name of the Lord, to call for means, I ask you who had a right? GCB April 5, 1901, par. 14

There are many barren places in America, many places that have not been worked. What is the matter with the church here? It is congested. This is the reason why there is so little of the deep moving of the Spirit of God. There is a world perishing in sin, and again and again the message has come to Battle Creek, God wants you to move out into places where you can labor for the salvation of souls. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 15

If we had been given help, we could have done much more work in Australia. But this work takes means. To whom does the means belong? Where does it come from? It comes from those who believe in Christ, and who are willing to give of their substance to help forward his work. But two or three men have controlled in the use of this means. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 16

It is not that I regret that I went to Australia. I am glad that I went; for God has given us access to the people. Eleven meeting-houses have been built since we went there. In every place where camp-meetings have been held a church has been built. From these churches workers are going about among the people. There have been Bible-workers. After the camp-meeting a mission is established, and continues its work till a church is organized. In the mission are Bible workers, who do missionary work from house to house. Sister Wilson, after she had laid her husband in the grave, took up this work, going from house to house, walking five or six miles to her readings. When she found those who were sick, she would minister to their necessities, and thus she won the love of the people. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 17

Thus by hard wrestling we have found our way to the hearts of the people, and I thank God that we have been enabled to do this. There are many places right here in America that have not been worked. What efforts have been made for them? What self-denial has been practiced? Where are our ministers? Have they been following in the tracks of their brother-ministers in working for the churches? They have done this in California, and when I spoke of the fields which are destitute, which need help, the excuse was made, “Some of these young ministers went out into these places; but they did not arouse much interest, and they did not think it best to go out again.” The Lord pity our faith! If you do not gain access in one place, go to another, and when you go out as medical missionaries to help the sick and suffering, or as canvassers, you are doing evangelistic work, which is just as important as the ministry. The canvassing work should now be pushed forward with vigor; for the time is coming when we shall not be able to travel over the country as freely and easily, or get access to the people as readily as we do now. The books that have been circulated and that can be circulated speak for God. They are silent witnesses for him. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 18

I can not tell how many hundreds of dollars I spent while in Australia in giving away my own books to those who I thought would read them, and as a result many have been brought into the truth. There was one man whom with his whole family, we highly prized. He is a reading man, and has a large farm, on which grow the choicest of oranges and lemons, with other fruit. But he did not in the beginning fully take his position for the truth, and went back. They told me about this. In the night season the angel of the Lord seemed to stand by me, saying, “Go to Brother -----, place your books before him, and this will save his soul.” I visited with him, taking with me a few of my large books. I talked with him just as though he were with us. I talked of his responsibilities. I said, “You have great responsibilities, my brother. Here are your neighbors all around you. You are accountable for every one of them. You have a knowledge of the truth, and if you love the truth, and stand in your integrity, you will win souls for Christ.” GCB April 5, 1901, par. 19

He looked at me in a queer way, as much as to say, “I do not think you know that I have given up the truth, that I have allowed my girls to go to dances, and to the Sunday-school, that we do not keep the Sabbath.” But I did know it. However, I talked to him just as though he were with us. “Now,” I said, “We are going to help you to begin to work for your neighbors. I want to make you a present of some books.” He said, “We have a library, from which we draw books.” I said, “I do not see any books here. Perhaps you feel delicate about drawing from the library. I have come to give you these books, so that your children can read them, and this will be a strength to you.” I knelt down and prayed with him, and when we rose, the tears, were rolling down his face, as he said, “I am glad that you came to see me. I thank you for the books.” GCB April 5, 1901, par. 20

The next time I visited him, he told me that he had read part of “Patriarchs and Prophets.” He said, “There is not one syllable I could change. Every paragraph speaks right to the soul.” GCB April 5, 1901, par. 21

I asked Brother—which of my large books he considered the most important. He said, “I lend them all to my neighbors, and the hotel-keeper thinks that ‘Great Controversy’ is the best.” “But,” he said, while his lips quivered, “I think that ‘Patriarchs and Prophets’ is the best. It is that which pulled me out of the mire.” GCB April 5, 1901, par. 22

But suffice it to say, he took his position firmly for the truth. His whole family united with him, and they have been the means of saving other families. So you can see that our books are of importance. They must be published and circulated. We have a great deal to do in the issuing of our publications. I want to say that I have not come here to feel under obligation to any one because means has been sent to Australia. The money which was sent was God's money. It was paid by God's people in tithes and donations. I send my thanksgiving to God for it, and I thank the people who have opened their hearts to help us. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 23

And I want to say now, When workers go into the barren parts of the earth, do not do to them as you would have done to us. Money has been sent to us in Australia, but no more than we ought to have had. It was not your means that you were handling, but you sent it as though you had created it, as though it were your own, as though you had a right to hold it, and those out of America had no claim on it. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 24

When God sends his messengers to foreign fields, as he sent me, old as I am, to Australia, what right have you to hedge up their way? Had means been allowed, I could have gone from field to field, from post to post, carrying the message. We tried to open the fields just as fast as we could. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 25

Brethren, if God calls you to go to a certain place, and if, when you lay the situation before those who are handling God's money as trustees and stewards, they refuse to aid you because they think a little money is going to be expended and that it is coming out of the treasury, do you go forward in the name of the Lord, and call upon the people to help you in your field[?] GCB April 5, 1901, par. 26

The people in Battle Creek are dying of inaction. What they need is to impart the truth which they believe. Every soul who will impart will receive from God more power to impart. This is what we are in the world for—to bring souls to a knowledge of the truth as it is in Jesus. Before the way is hedged up, it is for every one to realize his accountability to proclaim the message that God has given him. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 27

I am glad that the work has been opening in the South. I want to tell you that there are among the colored people persons with talent, and we must search them out. But there are men who are still diverting the very means which should go to these destitute fields to advance the work there. The Lord desires us to do all we can for these fields. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 28

There is New Orleans. What men have you working there? What have you done with your workers and with your means to annex new territory, to plant the standard of truth in new places, to establish monuments for God. Where, I ask you, are the laborers? What laborers are there in Memphis? There are two sisters working there. Across the street from the two rooms which they have hired in which to live is the little meeting-house which the believers in Memphis have bought. Until a few months ago they had no place in which to meet for worship. They bought a little meeting-house for a thousand dollars, and then they had two hundred left with which to furnish it. I thank God for this meeting-house. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 29

When I look at the piles of buildings there are here, I feel sad at heart. If you had the missionary spirit, if you had gone out in accordance with the largeness of the message, in accordance with its breadth and importance, you would not have erected one half of the buildings you have here. You would have made plants in city after city, and God would have approved of your work. He does not like your administration. He does not like your nearness of sight. He wants you to open new fields, and for years he has been calling upon you to do this. This takes money and laborers; but I read in Daniel that they which turn many to righteousness shall shine forever and ever. We want to be in that company. We want to be among the shining ones in the kingdom of God. There we shall want to see those for whom we have prayed and worked. God help us. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 30

Brother Kilgore, you are acquainted with the South. Will you help in the work there? Will you go there to stand at the head as their president, to rescue souls? You are better acquainted with the work in the South than many are. Will you go there? [Bro. Kilgore: Yes.] GCB April 5, 1901, par. 31

We determined to visit the South, and I went in my feebleness. I was very sick, but I did not allow my sickness to hinder me. I went to Vicksburg, and what did I see there? Just as pretty a little church as we have built at Cooranbong. In the basement of this meeting-house a church school is held. Besides the church in Vicksburg a mission house of two stories has been built, with another house of four rooms. This is the beginning. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 32

I spoke to the people on Sabbath morning, and as I saw the congregation, mostly composed of black people, bright and sharp of intellect, I felt that if I had dared, I should have wept aloud. As the people sat before me, I never felt more pleased to break the bread of life, and to speak comforting words to a people. My soul longed after them. When the old meeting-house in which they had met was sold, and was being torn down, the hopes of the people seemed to fall to the ground. They did not know what to do. Their enemies said, They have sold the meeting-house, and now they are going to leave you. But they were assured that a better house was to be built. Then their courage rose at once. When I heard them singing in the meeting, I thought, It is not only they who are singing. Of those who are saved it is [said], God himself will rejoice over them with singing. If there was not on that Sabbath singing in the heavenly courts, then I am mistaken. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 33

While many of you had stood back and made discouraging reports about the work in the South, the work has been going on, and something has been done. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 34

Now I wish to say, We want the people to take hold of the work with interest. In every Church where there is a minister, he is to be a shepherd, not hovering over those in the Church, but taking workers with him, he is to go into the places around. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 35

While in Vicksburg I made my home on “The Morning Star,” and I looked to see the great extravagance which I had heard had been manifested by my son Edson in the preparation of this boat as a house to live in, as a meeting-house to which he could call the people to hear the truth as he went up and down the river. What did I see? I saw the plainest little rooms, some merely lined with plain boards. There was not one extravagant thing in the boat. Now to those who are troubled about the wrongs done in these missionary fields, I would say, Why don't you have interest enough to go there, and see what is being done, before you nourish your prejudices? why do you not interest yourself enough in the field to become acquainted with it? to prove all things. Then you will testify that the work being done is right and good. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 36

The work is one. Do not think that because you are here in Battle Creek, God is not supervising the work in any other parts of the field. The world is the field; the world is the vineyard; and every spot must be worked. God desires every soul to put on the harness. “We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in dark places. Wherefore take unto [you] the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” How?—In God's strength—minute men, waiting to hear what he will say next. What we need is living faith in the invisible instrumentalities that are arrayed against the powers of darkness. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 37

The great army of evil is constantly working to gain the victory for Satan. The synagogue of Satan has come out to contest every step made in the advancement of truth. Will those who profess to believe the truth join the powers of darkness? You have done it, but not all. I thank God that He has honest believers and laborers in the field, but they need to be educated. They need to be disciplined. They need to be taught how to work. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 38

Just as soon as the workers in California stop doing aggressive work, and hover over a few churches, treading on one another's heels, their light will go out. If you wish to retain the tithe in California, not using it in foreign fields, you must do aggressive work at home. You are not to be merely consumers, but producers. You should not merely absorb. You should sustain the work in every part of the world. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 39

There is the work in London. The workers are struggling with nothing to do with. There are hardly any laborers, and here in Battle Creek a great congregation assembles Sabbath after Sabbath to hear the Word of Life. What account will you give to God for all the opportunities and privileges He has given you that you may work for Him? To those who have gone out into hard fields, which you have made as hard as possible, you have not given much encouragement. The workers in the South have had very little encouragement, where my own son has been striving to push the work. And if I had opened my lips to encourage him, it would have been said, “Oh, it is because it is her son.” GCB April 5, 1901, par. 40

In Nashville what did I find? There I found that a building had been purchased very cheaply, and the workers there are preparing to manufacture health foods. A printing office is in operation, and it is needed. Now they can publish papers and small books and perhaps larger books, reducing the price as much as possible. These books, can be used in the work of teaching the people to read. Many of the people will have to be taught to read, and the white and black teachers must unite in counsel. Then the white teachers will work for the white people, and the colored teachers for the colored people. The white people, as well as the colored, need to be saved. Many of the white people in the South are as ignorant and degraded as the colored people. God wants to save them. He wants to see a company raised up in the southern States to work for Him. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 41

God told me that I was to enter into no strife with men, that I was to go straight forward in His name, and appeal to the people to come up to the help of the Lord, to the help of the Lord against the mighty. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 42

If our ministers, instead of hovering over the churches to keep the breath of life in them, would go forth to work for those outside the fold, those in the churches would receive the vital current from heaven as they hear that souls were drawn to the Lamb of God. They would pray that God would give power to the workers, and their prayers would be as sharp sickles in the harvest fields. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 43

The Lord desires His people to arouse. Word came from Colorado, asking me if the Southern field was closed. It was said, Word has come that the field is closed, and that we need send no more money there. But the evidence is that more means than ever should be sent there. The report that the work in the South was closed was started by the enemy. He saw what was going on, that work was being done for Christ in the South, and he stirred up his human agencies to hinder the work in one place. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 44

When Christ was upon earth, He told us just what to do when persecution arises. He says, When you go to one place, and they will not hear you, go to the next place, and when they persecute you there, go to the next place. You will not have gone over all the cities of Israel until the Son of Man be come. These are the directions which have been given us. One place closed does not close the Southern field. An army for Christ is to be raised up there. And I believe Brother Kilgore consented to go there. God desires him to go because he understands the field, and can strengthen the work there. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 45

There is work to be done in many hard places, and out of these hard places bright workers are to come. In some places in the South it is impossible for white laborers to labor for the colored people. The work is going to be managed so that colored laborers will be educated to work for their own people. There are colored people who have talent and ability. They can work in the saving of souls, and God will work with them, and give them the victory. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 46

I promised the Lord that if I ever stood before the congregation in Battle Creek again, I would speak the truth just as it is. I might write it, and have written it, but it was like water spilled upon a rock. Now that I am here, I intend to keep the matter before you day by day during this conference. If there is any power that can raise the missionary spirit in you, God will speak to you. I believe God will pour out His Spirit on those that are here, so that they will come up to His help. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 47

Have I not said enough for this time? I know there is much unsaid which I shall say later. I want to keep your minds stirred up by way to remembrance. Everything is being decided for life or death. We are working for eternity. The Lord is coming. I mean to bear a clean-cut testimony, and to bear it to all who have lost their bearings. I want them to know just where I stand. Everything that I have goes into the cause. All is God's, and if I can see souls saved, that is all I ask. GCB April 5, 1901, par. 48