Atlantic Union Gleaner



November 4, 1908

An Appeal to Ministers and Church Officers


Dear Brethren, AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 1

As I read the reports of labor published in the Review and our other denominational periodicals from week to week, my heart is rejoiced over the progress of the third angel's message in the home field and abroad. Our workers are having many remarkable experiences. The Lord is going before them, preparing the way, and the cause of present truth is making rapid advancement. This should be a source of profound gratitude to God. As we contrast the present prosperity of the work with the early years of poverty passed through by the pioneers of this cause, when our numbers were but few and our resources were limited, we can but exclaim, “What hath God wrought!” AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 2

And yet there remains much to be done. In the past we have not been so diligent as we ought to have been in seeking to save the lost. Precious opportunities have been allowed to pass by unimproved. This has delayed the coming of our King. Had the people of God constantly preserved a living connection with him from the beginning of the great advent movement, had they obeyed his word and advanced in all his opening providences, they would today be in the heavenly Canaan. AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 3

We have done only a small part of the evangelical work that God desires us to do among our neighbors and friends. In every city of our land there are those who know not the truth. And out in the broad world beyond the seas there are many new fields in which we must plow the ground and sow the seed. AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 4

A few faithful missionaries are even now planting the standard of truth in fields far away. Publications are multiplying in many languages. These silent messengers are enlightening thousands. But as a people we come far short of moving forward as fast as the providence of God opens the way. Our General gives the command, “Go forward.” Thousands are thirsting for living truth. The Macedonian cry is coming to us from every direction, “Come over and help us.” We look about us, and inquire, “Who will go?” O that every follower of Jesus might respond: “Send me. I long to do something for my Master.” AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 5

Time and again I have had presented before me a vision of people across the broad ocean, standing in perplexity, and pale with anxiety, earnestly inquiring, “What is truth?” They say: “We want the bread of life. Our churches are backslidden from God. We want to find the old paths. We want to come back to the simplicity of gospel religion.” My tears flow as I see this picture rising vividly before me. The voice from heaven pleads, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” While so great a work remains to be done, shall not we, as Christ's followers, arouse to a sense of our God-given responsibility, and be active in doing our part? AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 6

Plans for Enlarging Our Laboring Forces

The strength of an army is measured largely by the efficiency of the men in the ranks. A wise general instructs his officers to train every soldier for active service. He seeks to develop the highest efficiency possible on the part of all. If he were to depend upon his officers alone, he could never expect to conduct a successful campaign. He counts on loyal, untiring service from every man in his army. The responsibility rests largely upon the men in the ranks. AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 7

And so it is in the army of Prince Emmanuel. Our General, who has never lost a battle, expects willing service from every one who has enlisted under his banner. In the closing controversy now waging between the forces for good and the hosts of evil, he expects all, laymen as well as ministers, to take part. All who have enlisted as soldiers of his, are to render faithful service as minutemen, with a keen sense of the responsibility resting upon them individually. AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 8

Those who have the spiritual oversight of the church should devise ways and means by which an opportunity may be given to every member of the church to act some part in God's work. This has not always been done in the past. Plans have not been fully carried out whereby the talent of all might be employed in active service. There are but few who realize how much has been lost because of this. AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 9

The leaders in God's cause, as wise generals, are to lay plans for advance moves all along the line. In their planning, they are to give special study to the work that can be done by the laity for their friends and neighbors. The work of God in this earth can never be finished until the men and women comprising our church-membership, rally to the work, and unite their efforts with those of ministers and church officers. AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 10

The salvation of sinners requires earnest, personal labor. We are to bear to them the word of life, not to wait for them to come to us. O that I could speak words to men and women that would arouse them to diligent action! The moments now granted us to work are few. We are standing upon the very borders of the eternal world. We have no time to lose. Every moment is golden, and altogether too precious to be devoted merely to self-serving. Who will seek God earnestly, and from him draw strength and grace to be his faithful workers in the missionary field? AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 11

In every church there is talent, which, with the right kind of labor, might be developed to become a great help in this work. There should be a well-organized plan for the employment of workers to go into all our churches, large and small, to instruct the members how to labor for the upbuilding of the church, and also for unbelievers. It is training, education, that is needed. Let all set their hearts and minds to become intelligent in regard to the work for this time, qualifying themselves to do that for which they are best adapted. AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 12

That which is needed now for the upbuilding of our churches is the nice work of wise laborers to discern and develop talent in the church,—talent that can be educated for the Master's service. Those who shall labor in visiting the churches should give the brethren and sisters instruction in practical methods of doing missionary work. Let there be a class for the training of the youth as well. Young men and women should be educated to become workers at home, in their own neighborhoods, and in the church. AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 13

All this work of training should be accompanied with earnest seeking of the Lord for his Holy Spirit. Let this be urged home upon those who are willing to give themselves to the Master's service. Our conduct is watched by the world; every act is scrutinized and commented upon. There must be diligent cultivation of the Christian graces, that those who profess the truth may be able to say no evil of them truthfully. In all their intercourse with unbelievers they are exerting an influence for good or for evil. They are either a savor of life unto life, or of death unto death. God calls for greater piety, for holiness of life and purity of conduct, in accordance with the elevating, sanctifying truths which we profess. The lives of the workers for Christ should be such that unbelievers, seeing their godly walk and circumspect conversation, may be charmed with the faith that produces such results. AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 14

The end is near, stealing upon us stealthily, imperceptibly, like the noiseless approach of a thief in the night. May the Lord grant that we shall no longer sleep as do others, but that we shall watch and be sober. The truth is soon to triumph gloriously, and all who now choose to be laborers together with God will triumph with it. The time is short; the night soon cometh when no man can work. Let those who are rejoicing in the light of present truth, now make haste to impart the truth to others. The Lord is inquiring, “Whom shall I send?” Those who wish to sacrifice for the truth's sake, are now to respond, “Here am I, Lord; send me.” AUGleaner November 4, 1908, par. 15

Mrs. E. G. White