Ms 123, 1898

1898

Ms 123, 1898

An Appeal for Help, Part 1

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

October 3, 1898

Portions of this manuscript are published in Ev 249-250. +Note

I arose at half past one o’clock with a burden of soul in behalf of the destitute foreign mission fields. I appeal to the General Conference to awake, to be discreet, to seek wisdom from God, to consecrate themselves to God. Then, while the necessities of the work are constantly making themselves felt in medical missionary lines, that branch of the work, if wisely managed, will largely support itself. There is aggressive work to be done in the missions near you, in the Southern Field, which has been sadly neglected; there is also distress and lack of funds to advance the work in foreign fields. The Lord calls for workers. He calls for freewill offerings from those whose hearts are in the work, who have a burden for souls, that they shall not perish but have everlasting life. Ms123-1898.1

Doth God know? Is there knowledge with the Most High? He is our God, and we are His people. Let us serve the Lord, and receive His blessings, that we may bestow them upon others. Ms123-1898.2

I appeal to the General Conference to make earnest efforts in our churches, to arouse them to give of their means to sustain foreign missions. The enemy is playing the game of life for the souls of men. He is seeking to secure means, that he may bind it up, that it shall not be used to advance the missionary enterprises abroad. Where is your interest, my brethren? The Foreign Mission Board needs to carry a continual responsibility in this line. Unless your hearts are touched by the situation in foreign fields, the last message of mercy to be given to the world will be bound about, and the work which God would have done will be left undone. Ms123-1898.3

The year 1898 is passing into eternity. Now, just now, is the time when we should use every ability we possess to arouse our people to understand that the great day of the Lord is soon to open upon us. If there was ever a time when sacrifices should be made, it is now. Those who have means should understand that now is the time to use it. Practice economy in your homes. Do not, I beg of you, absorb means in embellishing your houses, for it is God’s money, and it will be required of you again. The goods entrusted to you is the Lord’s money, to be used in building up and strengthening His kingdom. There is no robbery to be practiced toward God. His goods are entrusted to His stewards, that they may be carefully traded upon to bring back a revenue to God in the saving of souls unto eternal life. And these in their turn will become stewards of trust to co-operate with the great firm in the interests of the kingdom of God. Ms123-1898.4

Wherever there is life in the subjects of God’s kingdom, there will be increase and growth, because there is a constant interchange, taking and giving out, receiving and restoring to the Lord His own property, that His treasury may be the storehouse from which to draw to sustain the gospel ministry in all parts of His vineyard. If men and women are covetous, and will not return to God His portion in tithes and offerings, God is robbed, and the work He designs shall be done for the world is neglected. These unfaithful stewards will be charged with misappropriation of their Lord’s goods. Ms123-1898.5

The privileges God has given to our world in the words of life from His living oracles are to do us good, to convert the soul from a life of sin to righteousness. Every soul converted is to have the light in regard to the Lord’s requirement for tithes and offerings. All that men enjoy they receive from the Lord’s great farm, and He is pleased to have His heritage enjoy His goods; but He has made a special contract with all who stand under the bloodstained banner of Prince Immanuel, that they may show their dependence and accountability to God by returning to His treasury a certain portion as His own. This is to be invested in supporting the missionary work, which must be done to fulfill the commission given to them by the Son of God just before He left His disciples. Ms123-1898.6

“All power is given unto in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:18-20.] Ms123-1898.7

Mark’s record of this commission is: “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; in my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them, they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” [Mark 16:15-18.] Ms123-1898.8

God works with every true believer, and the light received is given out again in the work which the believer does. The impressions received are expressed to others by pen and voice. In thus giving of that which he has received, his power of receiving is increased; greater light, increased knowledge is his. In this work, which devolves upon every church member, is the life and growth of the church. The church member whose life consists in ever receiving and never giving soon loses the blessing. If truth does not flow forth from him to others, he loses his capacity to receive. As the soul empties himself of the heavenly light and gifts, he makes room for fresh current of grace and truth to flow into the soul from the living fountain. The goods of heaven must be bestowed on others if we would have fresh blessings. Ms123-1898.9

This work will constitute every member of the church a laborer together with God. Self-sacrifice and self-denial is required of every child of God. It is the privilege of every human being who receives Christ to be a worker with Christ. Of your own selves you can do nothing, but Christ is the great worker. The Author of truth will be the Finisher of the work. Ms123-1898.10

One truth received into the heart will make room for still another truth. The truth, wherever received, quickens into activity the powers of the receiver. The mental power of a church lies in the mental resources of its members to appropriate the truth given. God calls upon His people to wake up to their responsibilities. A flood of light is shining from the Word of God, and there must be an awakening to neglected obligations. When these are met by giving back to God His own in tithes and offerings, the world will have the message the Lord designs it shall have. The gospel is the hope of the world, and if man will make this gospel his property, the Lord will speak, and the world will be glad to hear and practice the truth. Ms123-1898.11

Christ said, “I if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.” [John 12:32.] For the joy of seeing souls rescued from the hand of the destroyer, Christ endured the cross. He became the living sacrifice for a fallen world. Into that act of self-sacrifice was put the heart Christ, the love of God, and through this sacrifice the mighty influence of the Holy Spirit was given to the world. Christ gives a new character to all who believe. This character, through the infinite sacrifice of Christ, is to be the reproduction of Christ’s character. Ms123-1898.12

Behold, the work of God is languishing. Let the churches awake, and realize the time in which they live. God wants men to give the message of warning to a world asleep, dead in trespasses and sins. The youth are to be instructed line upon line, precept upon precept. The missionaries are not sustained as God requires they should be. Parents, do not, for Christ’s sake, use the Lord’s money to please the eye or taste of your children. This money belongs to God. Teach them that it should be used in lifting the standard in new fields. Do not teach your children to seek after style and ostentation to obtain an influence in the world. Will this incline them to seek to save the souls of men and women? No; I answer, No, it will not do this. It will create envy, jealousy, evil surmising, in their hearts. They will be led to compete with the show and extravagance of the world, and to expend the Lord’s money for that which is not essential for health and happiness. Ms123-1898.13

Those who have had means to use freely have not taken into consideration the fact that there are many people in the world who are hungry, starving. They may say, I cannot feed them all. But by studying the lessons of Christ upon economy, you can feed one, you may feed many, who are hungering for temporal food. “Gather up the fragments, that nothing be lost.” [John 6:12.] These words were spoken by One whose power wrought a miracle to create food to supply the needs of five thousand men besides women and children. Ms123-1898.14

Money is a needed treasure, and it is not to be lavished upon those who do not need it. Someone needs your willing gifts. You are not to educate your children to think that your love for them must be expressed in indulging their pride, their extravagance, their love of show and display. This is not necessary to make your children happy or comfortable. There is no time now to invent ways to use up money. Your inventive faculties are to be put to the stretch to see how you can save and economize, how you can deny self, and have something to invest in the Lord’s cause, that the truth may come to all people. Christ says, “He that will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.” [Luke 9:23.] Ms123-1898.15

Our foreign missions are languishing. The waste places of the earth are to be cultivated, that they may bud and blossom as the rose. My brethren, the form of sound words is now to be prized above every earthly thing. The Word of the Lord, which is eternal life to all who eat of it, is of highest value. This Word is to be as the tree of life for the salvation of the souls of men, women, youth, and children. This Word possesses an elevating power. Those who through belief and practice have experienced its life giving power we ask, Will you not arouse to more resolute, determined effort to hold forth the Word of life to the souls perishing in their sins? Ms123-1898.16

Men are needed who will give themselves unreservedly to the work of hunting for souls. Money is needed, not to invest in senseless things that cannot testify of God, but in the cause of truth. Of what value is untold wealth if it is hoarded up in expensive mansions or in bank stock? What do these weigh in the scale in comparison with the salvation of one human soul for whom Christ, the Son of the Infinite God, has died. Ms123-1898.17

By many, idols are cherished and worshipped. Cut away your idols. Give up your selfish pleasures, which consume the means you lavish upon them. The intellect is a talent, and it is to be used not to plan for your own selfish gratification, but to plan how the means entrusted to you as stewards may be best used for the salvation of perishing souls. Those who are men in the sight of God, and who are thus recorded in the books of heaven, are those who, like Daniel, cultivate every faculty in such a way as to best represent the kingdom of God in a world lying in wickedness. The world needs men of though, men of principle, men who are constantly growing and increasing in understanding and discernment. The press is in need of men to use it to the best advantage, that the truth may be given wings to speed it to every nation, tongue, and people, and that the light may be sent in clear, bright rays to those in the darkness of error. Ms123-1898.18

Progression in knowledge is essential, for knowledge is power when employed in the work and cause of God. How little do we in this generation know of the conflict, trials, and difficulties, the hard labor of men in past generations to fit themselves to meet the armies of Satan. Putting on the whole armor of God, they were able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Their words were, My brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. For 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 high 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. Ms123-1898.19

These men who in the past gave themselves to God and to the uplifting of His cause were as true as steel to principle. They were men who would not fail or be discouraged, men who were, as was Daniel, full of reverence and zeal for God, full of purpose, industry, and toil. They were as weak and as helpless as any of those who are now engaged in the work, but they put their whole dependence in God. They had wealth, but it consisted of mind and soul culture. This every one may have who will make God first and last and best in everything. Although destitute of wisdom, knowledge, virtue, and power, men may learn from Christ the lessons it is their privilege to learn. Ms123-1898.20

In this time we have privileges and advantages that it was not easy to obtain in generations past. We have increased light, and this light has come into the world because of the work of faithful sentinels, who made God their dependence and received might and power from Him to let light shine in clear bright rays to the world. In this time, near the close of the year 1898, we have increased light to improve, as men and women of noble worth improved the light God gave them. They toiled long to learn the lessons in the school of Christ, and they did not toil in vain. Their persevering efforts were rewarded. They bound themselves up with the Mightiest Power, and yet they were ever longing for a deeper, higher, and broader comprehension of eternal realities, that they might unselfishly present the riches of the treasures of truth to a needy world. Ms123-1898.21

We need workers now. We need to make every use of the youth who will cultivate honest industry, who are not afraid to put themselves to the task. Anywhere and in any place they will find a position; because they are youth who falter not by the way, whose mind and soul bear the divine similitude. Their eye is single, and they constantly advance upward and onward, crying, Victory. But there is no call for the lazy and indolent, the fearful and unbelieving, who by their lack of faith and unwillingness to deny self for Christ’s sake keep the work from advancing. There are men who possess excellent faculties, but who have come to a standstill. They do not “go forward” unto victory. And all the ability with which God has endowed them will be of no value to them if it is unused. Many of these men are found among the grumblers. They grumble because, they say, they are not appreciated. But they do not appreciate themselves sufficiently to co-operate with the greatest Teacher the world has ever known. Ms123-1898.22

Of what use is it for those who do nothing to long to rise higher than they are? Let them work. Let them rise and advance. Keep step with the Great Leader. If you have gone as high as your capabilities will allow you to go, why do you cherish dissatisfaction? Why do you complain that others do not appreciate you? You do not appreciate yourselves sufficiently to get out of the way of others. If you think that you can stand in a higher position, take that position and retain it, and still advance. Those who have sown the seeds of laziness will reap also what they have sown. Those who have sown the seeds of ignorance will reap also what they have sown. Ms123-1898.23

It is hard study, hard toil, persevering diligence, that will obtain victories. Waste no moments, waste no hours. Work, earnest, faithful work, will be seen and appreciated. Those who wish for stronger minds can gain them by diligence. Brains increase in power and efficiency by use. He who uses most diligently his mental and physical powers will produce the greatest results. Minds become strong through hard thinking. Every power of the being grows by action. Ms123-1898.24

I urge all who believe the truth for this time to remember that the cause of God needs more than praise. It needs your means, that the work may be carried forward. Practice economy in the use of your means. Use your ingenuity to make a little go a long way. It will be necessary for you to practice economy in the use of your time. This is the Lord’s. Your strength is the Lord’s. If you have extravagant habits, cut them away from your life as soon as possible. Unless you do this, you will be bankrupt for eternity. Economy, blended with industry and sobriety, is a better portion for you in this world than a rich dowry. Ms123-1898.25

If, in the providence of God, you have been given riches, do not settle down with the thought that there is no need for you to exert yourself, that you have enough to draw upon, and that you can afford to eat, drink, and be merry. Do not stand idle while others are using their capabilities in an effort to obtain means for the cause. Invest your means in the Lord’s work. If you are doing less than you should do for the work of God in giving light to the souls perishing around you, be sure that you are incurring guilt for your indolence. Ms123-1898.26