Australasian Union Conference Record


July 28, 1899

An Appeal For Help


Talk at the Meeting Where Money Was Raised for the Sanitarium.

When I read in the General Conference Bulletin that twenty thousand dollars had been donated to Australia, and that large donations had been made to the General Conference to help in other places, a feeling of sadness came over me. I felt that if this donation came to our people in this way, it would deprive them of a blessing, according to the eighth and ninth chapters of 2 Corinthians, so that rich supplies of grace might flow in upon God's people, because of their self-denial and self-sacrifice. Christ says: “He that will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” You have read your Bibles, and you know of the cross the Saviour bore when He laid aside His royal robe and kingly crown and clothed His divinity with humanity. He did not come to take his position among the wealthy, where He could have all the luxuries and conveniences of life. For our sakes He became poor, that we, through His poverty, might become rich. He is our example. We can deny ourselves, and we can do a great deal more of this than we have any idea of. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 1

Just as soon as we place ourselves where we realize that all that we have and are is the Lord's, it will be easy to give. When we accepted Jesus Christ, we accepted not only the advantages that we are entitled to by the Word of God, but the suffering and humiliation also; and all the spiritual and temporal advantages which have come from Christ. He bridged the gulf between heaven and earth, and thus made finite man of value in God's sight. Through Christ, our Mediator and Intercessor, the human race has been placed on vantage ground. Whatever our capabilities, whatever our poverty or riches, we are to show that we realize that we are accountable to God and dependent on Him. By our liberality and self-denial we are to strive to co-operate with Him. As labourers together with God we have pledged ourselves to co-operate with Him in the advancement of His work. This is our stewardship. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 2

The work of God is to be carried on by us as a people. We know how it started. My husband said: “Wife, let us take only sixteen shillings a week. We shall live very plainly and dress very plainly, and take the means that otherwise would come to us, and invest it in the publishing work.” The publishing house was then a plain, square building, twenty-four by thirty-six. Some narrow-minded men, who wanted the money for themselves, said, “This is altogether too large a building.” They brought such heavy pressure to bear regarding this question that a meeting was called. I was asked to go and explain why, if the Lord was coming so soon, the publishing work should need such a large building. I said: “You that have ears, I want you to hear. It is because the Lord is coming that we want a building as large as this is; and more than that, it will grow larger as the work progresses. The Lord has a work to do in the world. The message must go to all parts of the earth. It is because we believe this that we have started this work. We are going to deny ourselves.” AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 3

My husband and I decided to take lower wages. Others pledged themselves to do this also, and the money thus saved was used in starting the work. Some of our brethren donated quite liberally, because they believed what we said. In after years, when prosperity attended the work, and these brethren had grown old, and become poor, we took their cases into account, and helped them all we could. My husband was a man full of sympathy for the needy and the suffering. “Brother-----put his means into the work when it was in need of help, and now we must help him,” he would say. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 4

There are cases where people will give, as those did when the apostles were unwilling to receive it, so liberal was the gift. There have been cases where my husband has said: “I cannot take your means.” I believe Christ will make us willing to do just as the Israelites did when they were building the tabernacle in the wilderness. The tabernacle was to be built, and the Lord was very particular about the building, as He is about anything connected with His service. In Egypt the Israelites had been accustomed to see splendour and grandeur connected with anything kingly; and God knew they would not be impressed unless there was some outward display. He let them have this, and gave men of His appointment skill and tact to do the work. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 5

We want God to take hold of this work. But to say we will not receive any loans, with or without interest, would not be wise. There may be those who could loan us money, while they would not feel able to make a gift. Newly come to the faith, they might hardly feel that they could give the money. We need a Sanitarium, and we must have it. I have not had much to do with this institution, but I feel that it is my Sanitarium as much as it is yours, because my prayers and interest are in it. It is a necessity that we have a Sanitarium; but I cannot go so far as to say that there will be no debt upon it. For years I have been hiring money from America. Nevertheless, from those who can make donations we shall be very thankful to receive donations. There are many who can give. But to say to our brethren, “You must make a donation, because we will not take a loan, with or without interest,” would be unwise. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 6

One brother said to me not long ago: “You are in a heavy pressure for means. I will loan you sixty pounds for one year without interest.” We were under heavy pressure in order to put up the Health Retreat, and I knew this means would help us. I felt as though it was a God-send, and I was very grateful for it. I believe the Lord stirred up our brother's mind to loan this money, and I felt very thankful. I help as long as I have any means to help with. As for laying up money, I do not do it; and I do not expect to do it. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 7

The Sanitarium, in Summer Hill, as it is now, does not properly represent the grand and ennobling work we have to do for the Master. In the Sanitarium we shall erect, there should be no extravagant display. We must locate where we shall not feel that we have to keep up a grand appearance in order to make a right impression. We must begin, as has been stated, with a building that will accommodate one hundred patients, and then as the Lord gives prosperity, we must enlarge, if His Spirit leads in that direction. But we must make sure that we are treading on safe ground, and then God will help us. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 8

Our work is to educate men and women to understand their responsibility to God, to understand that everything they have comes from Him through Jesus Christ. “Ye are not your own; for ye are bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body, and in your Spirit, which are God's.” Each one of us should stand where we realize our responsibility and accountability to the God of heaven. When we realize this, Divine blessing will rest upon us. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 9

God declares: “Behold, I will send My messenger, and he shall prepare the way before Me; and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to His temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in; behold He shall come, saith the Lord of Hosts.” The Lord comes to His temple to find those who are sincere. He measures the worshippers. He knows those who are true-hearted and self-sacrificing. “Who may abide the day of His coming; and who shall stand when He appeareth?” Who will stand in the day of investigation. This does not mean the time when the books are opened. It is a preparatory work. “For He is like a refiner's fire and like fuller's soap.” To those who have felt unconcerned, the Spirit comes as a reprover, and shows them that they need to do something to cleanse the temple. He investigates the temple and the worshippers thereof. “He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; and He shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto God an offering in righteousness.” It will be as it was in the days of old, when the people were bringing their gifts for the building of the tabernacle. Their offerings were accepted, and they brought so much that the word went forth, “Bring no more; there is enough.” Even though an offering may be small, the Lord will receive it as wholly acceptable; and He can make it go a long way. “Then shall the offering of Judah and Jerusalem be pleasant unto the Lord, as in the days of old, and as in former years.” AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 10

“I am the Lord; I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed. Even from the days of your fathers ye are gone away from Mine ordinances, and have not kept them. Return unto Me, and I will return unto you, saith the Lord of Hosts. But ye said, Wherein shall we return? Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed Me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed Thee? In tithes and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse; for ye have robbed Me, even this whole nation.” AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 11

Today men are robbing God. For the costly, massive structures they are rearing, they will have to give an account. The means thus used is needed to send the Gospel to the dark places of the earth. The owners are accountable to God for the misuses of the means God has given them. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 12

“Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in Mine house, and prove Me now herewith, saith the Lord of Hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the Lord of Hosts. And all nations shall call you blessed; for ye shall be a delightsome land, saith the Lord of Hosts.” AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 13

God speaks to the class who are always complaining. “Your words have been stout against Me, saith the Lord. Yet ye say: What have we spoken so much against Thee? Ye have said, it is vain to serve God; and what profit is it that we have kept His ordinance, and that we have walked mournfully before the Lord of Hosts?” Who asked them to walk mournfully? God wants us to walk in the light of the Sun of Righteousness. He wants His people to reflect the light of heaven. He wants us to lift up our heads and rejoice, because our redemption draweth nigh. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 14

“And now we call the proud happy; yea, they that work wickedness are set up; yea, they that tempt God are even delivered.” Thus the murmurers talk. But a different class is brought to view. “Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another; and the Lord hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon His name. And they shall be Mine, saith the Lord of Hosts, in that day when I make up My jewels. And I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God, and him that serveth Him not.” AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 15

When God's people show that they realize their accountability to Him, and their dependence on Him, by carrying forward His work, the Lord blesses them. We are to do the very best we can. We must have a Sanitarium, and we must have it out of the city, in a convenient location, where there is plenty of water, because we use water in the place of drugs. The Sanitarium is to be located in a restful place, where trams are not passing all the time. It should be away from the smoke of the chimneys of a city, where the atmosphere is as pure as can be found. We can be in touch with Sydney, and yet be out of Sydney. Christ prayed for His people. “I pray not that thou shouldst take them out of the world, but that Thou shouldst keep them from the evil.” We are not to leave the world, but we are to avoid all the evil possible. The Lord God of Israel is going to help us in this matter, and we are going to seek Him with heart and soul. We are going to plead that God will let His Holy Spirit rest upon us. He will hearken to the testimony of faith, and I believe we shall see the salvation of God. I believe He will furnish good counsellors, men who can think in right lines, and He will work with them. I have no confidence in the smartest men that ever lived unless they are under the control of God. They may have natural capabilities and talents, but unless they are guided by the Holy Spirit, they will be controlled by some one else. God has given us talents, and He wants us to place ourselves under His working power. And just as sure as we do this, He will give us power to work. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 16

Brother Wessels is a little diffident in taking hold in a new place, but though he is in a new country he has not a new God. He has the same God that he had in Africa, and he can put himself under His teaching here. Christ says, “Come unto Me all ye that labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls.” Let us lay hold in order that we can lift. Let us behold the grace and glory in the face of Jesus Christ. The Lord God of Israel wants to work with every man who will be worked, and I believe that Brother Wessels is a man who wants to be worked. Christ says, “My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.” I have always found it so. Christ's yoke is easy because He bears the heavy end. His burden is light because He lifts with us. He says, “Learn of Me, and ye shall find rest.” We need this rest. We need to find it by living experience, and then go right to work, as though we knew that the God of Israel was at our right hand to help us. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 17

By self-sacrifice the work was started in America, and now the Lord has seen fit to send us here to commence the work. Even in my old age I have come. The Lord has given me strength, and I call upon you today to help us. I have been sick, but you have been praying for me, and He has heard your prayers. I did not think that I could have talked as I did yesterday. The Lord God of Israel is the hope of His people. He has said. “Build a Sanitarium,” and a Sanitarium we are going to build. He is going to help us to do this. We are going to call upon all to take hold and do what they can. The Lord's blessing will rest upon the work if we only have a willing mind. God has always helped us, and He will continue to help us. I praise His holy name. AUCR July 28, 1899, Art. A, par. 18