Manuscript Releases, vol. 1 [Nos. 19-96]


MR No. 55—The Spirit that Should Characterize the Work of Seventh-day Adventist Physicians

I am alarmed at the outlook both for the Sanitarium and the publishing house at Battle Creek and our institutions generally. A spirit has been manifesting itself, and strengthening year by year in the institutions, that is of an entirely different character from that which the Lord has revealed in His Word should characterize the physicians and workers connected with our health institutions, and the work of publishing. The idea is entertained that the physicians at the Sanitarium and men in responsible positions in the publishing house are not under obligations to be controlled by self denying, self-sacrificing principles of Christianity. But this idea has its origin in the councils of Satan. When physicians make manifest the fact that they think more of the wages they are to receive than of the work of the institution, they show that they are not men to be depended upon as unselfish, God-fearing servants of Christ, faithful in doing the work of the Master. 1MR 197.1

Men who are controlled by selfish desires should not remain connected with our institutions, and their course of action had better be exposed, that every church of Seventh-day Adventists may know what principles govern these men. 1MR 197.2

This would be a wise and just precaution; for through their medical profession this class take advantage of interests which the Conference has built up at great labor and sustained at great expense. Under the name of Seventh-day Adventists they establish themselves among our people, and represent themselves as working for the good of the cause. They are accepted as Christian physicians, and there is need that men and women should go forth into these various places, and act as missionaries in the capacity of Christian physicians; but they should be under the direction of the Conference. The people are so anxious to have institutions established, that they encourage men who come among them to take upon them the responsibility of building institutions. 1MR 197.3

But there are many who are practicing physicians who do not work with an eye single to the glory of God, but for the sake of gain to themselves. They exact exorbitant prices from those who require their services. They feel that they are not amenable to any one, and are not to be advised or counseled, but will follow their own impulses. In a large degree they work from selfish motives. In their medical practice they are not missionaries. Their unreasonable charges are recorded in the books by the true Witness, who says, “I know thy works.” The money physicians generally take from rich and poor, is in many cases too large for the services rendered and is reckoned no more or less than dishonest gain, by the God of Heaven; yet they demand these exorbitant prices for their professional aid, simply because they can do it; for when suffering, people must have help. The principles of truth are not brought into the soul to have a sanctifying influence upon their life and character, unless men are doers of the words of Christ. 1MR 198.1

If the churches shall welcome these men among them, because they claim the name of being Seventh-day Adventists, they will find that instead of benefit, they will reap injury from such an association. Everything will be shaken that can be shaken. When tested and tried, these men will reveal the unChristlike spirit that actuates them, making manifest the traits of character that never can be admitted through the heavenly gate. They follow the bent of their own mind, and not the counsels of God. 1MR 198.2

“God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). Heaven was purchased for men at an infinite price, and no man will enter the portals of bliss who has not through self-denial and self-sacrifice proved the quality and genuineness of his life for Christ and suffering humanity. 1MR 198.3

God will require a return from men in proportion as they set a value upon themselves and their services, for they will be judged according to their deeds, and by no less a standard than they themselves have established. If they have accounted their talents of so great value, and placed a high estimate upon their abilities, they will be required to render service proportionate to their own estimate and demands. O, how few have any real acquaintance with the Father or with His Son Jesus Christ. If they were imbued with the Spirit of Christ they would work the works of Christ. “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5). 1MR 199.1

He who judgeth righteously has said, “Without Me ye can do nothing” (John 15:5). All talents, great or small, have been entrusted to men by God, to be employed in His service, and when men use their ability simply for themselves, and have no special care to work in harmony with those in medical practice, who are of the same faith, they reveal that they are inclined to judge these men by themselves; they do not seek to answer the prayer of Christ, “That they may be one as He is one with the Father” (See John 17:11, 22). When they demand exorbitant prices for their services, God, the judge of all earth, will hold them to the measure of their own overrated estimation, and require of them to the full extent of the value they put upon themselves. 1MR 199.2

As they judge of their worth from a money point of view, God will judge of their works, comparing their services with their valuation of them. Unless converted, no one who thus overrates his ability, will ever enter heaven, for his personal influence in the service of Christ will never balance the scale of his estimation of himself or of his demands for his service for others. Selfishness and self-glorification are becoming the curse of our institutions, and leavening the whole camp of Israel. We have come to the place where God calls a halt, and we must now investigate, that we may know the motives which prompt to action and may know in whom the words of Christ are fulfilled. Jesus has said, “If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me” (Matthew 16:24). Self is to be hidden in Christ. 1MR 199.3

We have need to be alarmed because selfishness and covetousness are becoming a ruling power among us, and the Lord is displeased. The consciences of many are like India rubber. Men can be bought and sold by the highest bidder. When such men are weighed in the balances of the sanctuary, they are found wanting, for conscientiousness, honor, integrity, and fidelity are lacking. The sin of bribery is becoming so common, that the moral senses of many are perverted by this unholy practice. The time of testing is upon us, and many hold the truth in unrighteousness. They do not place themselves where they can best glorify God, but best please and glorify themselves. When it serves their purpose they are the most zealous advocates of the truth; but when the test of trial comes upon them, they shrink under the measuring line of God. Malachi describes the process of trial that shall fit the people of God to abide the day of His coming. “But who may abide the day of His coming? and who shall stand when He appeareth? for He is like a refiner's fire, and like fullers’ soap: And 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 the Lord an offering in righteousness” (Malachi 3:2, 3). This is the work the Lord will do throughout our institutions. And let no man or woman stand in the way of this important work; for souls are imperilled, and must be cleansed, refined, and purified as silver in the furnace. 1MR 200.1

He who is selfish and grasping, eager to take every dollar he can get from our institutions for his services, is binding about the work of God; verily he has his reward. He cannot be accounted worthy to be entrusted with the eternal, heavenly reward in the mansions Christ has gone to prepare for those who deny self and take up the cross and follow Him. The fitness of men to enter the blood-bought inheritance is tested during this probationary life. Those who have the spirit of self-sacrifice manifested in Christ, when He gave Himself for the salvation of fallen man, are those who will drink of the cup and be baptized with the baptism, and they will share in the glory of the Redeemer. Those who make it evident that the love of Christ controls their spirit and actuates their service, will be deemed fit subjects for the family above. We are all to be tested here in this life to prove whether, if admitted to heaven, we shall repeat the same course that Satan pursued there. But if the character which we develop during our probation is according to the divine Pattern, it qualifies us to receive the welcome, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: ... enter thou into the joy of thy Lord” (Matthew 25:21). But on the other hand, if men desire to be highly esteemed among men, if they are seeking for the highest positions, and demanding the highest remuneration they can obtain in this life, they will have just such characters in the future life. All heaven will pronounce them unfit for the kingdom, disqualified for any position of trust in the great work of God in the courts above. Our institutions are instrumentalities ordained of God, and the principles of equity, justice and righteousness must be maintained in them with fidelity. The work in which we are engaged must be done by men who are ordained of God as was Christ, to go forth with the spirit of sacrifice for the salvation of a lost world. This is the spirit that should characterize medical missionary work anywhere and everywhere. 1MR 201.1

Those who are partakers of the divine nature, cooperate in all things with the captain of their salvation. Jesus gave Himself, He laid aside His glory, for our sake He became poor, that we through His poverty might be made rich; and those who have His spirit take part in His humiliation, in His self-denial, in His self-sacrifice; they make manifest His meekness and lowliness of heart, and give themselves to the work He came to accomplish for perishing man. A mere profession of doctrine, however sound and scriptural, will never avail in the work of restoring man to happiness and to God. The evil in man's heart must be eradicated; for it is of the satanic character which brought rebellion into heaven. Unless this change is wrought in the heart, man fails to bear the Lord's proving, and against his name is written, “Unfaithful servant.” 1MR 202.1

I have been burdened as I have been shown by the Lord the great want of unity among the medical practitioners. They act as though the prayer of Christ did not embrace them, and they do not seek for oneness. The physicians should labor together in love and unity. None should be envious or jealous of their brother physicians. Methods of practice should not be allowed to create enmity, distrust and variance. The real cause lying at the foundation of variance is the narrow mind, the pharisaic spirit, that is brought into the life. Let the physicians give evidence that they are Christians, saying, “We are brethren, to meet in the same mansions by and by. We will strengthen one another in God.” 1MR 202.2

In every institution among us, in every branch and department of the work, God tests the spirit that actuates the worker. Does he have the mind that was in Christ, the earnest spirit and fervent devotion, the purity, the love, that should characterize the laborer for God? Does he bear the fruits of self-sacrifice that were seen in the life of our divine Lord? It is required in those who labor in the cause that the heart be enlisted in the enterprise, that they may give their services not merely for wages, not for honor, but for the glory of God, the salvation of lost man. 1MR 202.3

If it is evident that the heart of man is not enlisted, present no bribe, offer no flattering inducement to obtain the service of any physician; offer that which is reasonable, that which corresponds with the principles the Lord has unfolded in the establishment of our institutions, and no more. Satan, who claims to be the prince of this world, represents himself as very rich, and he can outbid you, and the larger you make your bribe, the larger he will make his. The world is Satan's agent to do his work. You will know whether or not a man is a Christian, for actions speak louder than words or profession. The spirit that characterizes the action represents the man, and the work will be in accordance with the mold he gives it. God will have it made manifest by test and trial who will stand connected with Christ in the end in the great plan of salvation. We are to act as reformers in every branch of our work; for then Christ works with us. 1MR 203.1

Christ has purchased us at an infinite cost, and today He lifts His hand, and calls our names as He did the name of Matthew as he sat at the receipt of custom. Jesus said, “Follow Me” (Matthew 9:9). Matthew left all,—all his gains,—and followed his Lord. He did not wait and stipulate a certain sum reaching the amount he had received in his former occupation, before he would render service, but without a question, he arose and followed Jesus. Under test and trial, many professed Christians must yet make it manifest whether they have subdued the traits of the carnal nature, or whether they are as a whited sepulcher, fair in appearance, but within full of impurity and defilement. 1MR 203.2

A profession of Christianity is not sufficient to constitute us Christians. We must each have the character manifest by our divine Pattern. The Word of God must be the rule of our life, the director of our practices; self-denial, self-sacrifice, holiness, compassion, truth and love must be found to be the fruits of our faith in Christ. When Christianity has its place in the heart it cannot be hid; it will be seen inwrought in the soul, and will be manifest in the outworking of practical life. Unless Christianity is found in the daily life, in the manner of working, in every line of duty, we do not represent Jesus. A Christian will manifest Christianity in the market, in buying and selling, in his profession, in his occupation and life, in his unselfish course toward all his associates. But of all men to whom we would look for a manifestation of the spirit of Christ, it is entirely proper for us to look with expectation to the Christian physician. But the standard must be elevated in the medical profession; for it is very low, and principles are corrupted for the sake of gain. 1MR 204.1

The Christian physician has no right to follow the custom of the world, to shape his action to obtain the patronage or praise of the ungodly. He should not accept exorbitant wages for his professional services, for the reward is awaiting the faithful and true. He has no more right to minister to others requiring a large remuneration than has the minister of the gospel a right to set his labors at a high money value, but only in accordance with consistency and mercy and the value of his work. It is manifest that unless Christianity is planted in the heart, it will not control the life. The profession of faith is of no more value than the spirit and the life testify that it is of a genuine character. Cleansing the outside of the cup has never succeeded in elevating the soul, making it pure and heavenly. The truth of God is of value to the receiver, only as it is permitted to have a restraining influence upon his spirit and practice. There is no snare so subtle, so constant, and fraught with such peril to the professed follower of Christ, as conformity to the world. “Come out from among them, and be ye separate” (2 Corinthians 6:17), is the call of God. 1MR 204.2

We know that the mind and will of God has no control over the world at large. God's countless mercies are enjoyed, His benefits appropriated, and there is on the part of the worldling no recognition of the Giver, no expression of gratitude for the manifold goodness of God. The reason for this is that the principle of truth is absent from the heart; it is not interwoven into the character, for its pure principles are not understood. The apostle says, “With the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Romans 10:10). What then is the difference between a Christian and a man whose heart is not brought under the controlling influence of the spirit of God? One is fallen upon the Rock and is broken; self is dead, and Jesus lives in him and molds and fashions him according to His own divine image. His connection with God is made manifest in his business transactions and in all the affairs of life, whether great or small; for he keeps the way of the Lord. His affections and hopes are not centered upon the things of this life, but they are set upon things above. The selfish one lives for self, and he seeks worldly honor, worldly gain; he will make it manifest that his hopes are centered upon the things of earth. He will selfishly grasp all that he possibly can to administer to himself, as Satan has done. There are many who have not a good conscience. 1MR 205.1

The heart is the citadel of the man, and until new affections, new moral tastes are created through the power of Christ, the enemy finds his stronghold in the heart. It is in the heart that man establishes his idols, and no power on earth can dislodge the enemy, when men are satisfied to live in separation from God. When the heart is not in possession of an indwelling Saviour, the carnal lusts, the tastes, the mind of the great deceiver will be revealed in the life, and although men may make a profession of Christianity, their works will testify that they know not God; though they acknowledge the truth, its place in the heart is occupied by a deceptive spirit. The love of the Saviour is not there. The love of Christ was an unselfish love, that prompted Him to seek and save that which was lost. Those who think much of their remuneration for their services, reveal the fact that they have not laid the foundation for their spiritual life on the sure Rock, or they have lost the spirit of the truth, and have forgotten that they are purged from the old leaven with the priceless blood of the Son of God. They have become so devoid of spiritual discernment that they place the sacred and the common on the same level. The Lord is not honored in their hearts, and the principles of the religion of Christ are not woven in the character. They go through a cold formal service that they call religion; but Christ is not formed within, the hope of glory. 1MR 205.2

A man whose heart is touched with great love to souls for whom Christ died, will not make himself a center. He will not seek to absorb everything and impart nothing, but his work will be actuated by faith and love. He will realize that he is dealing with souls purchased with the blood of Christ, and he will not allow anything to make him lose sight of eternal realities. He will keep in mind the fact that everything in connection with his life and character is charged with sacred responsibilities, and through a living connection with God, his influence may have a leavening power upon those with whom he is associated. We cannot know the beauty and riches of the grace of Christ until we have made a practical application of the truth to our own hearts. Medical men, in addition to your medical education and training, you need the mind that was in Christ Jesus. This will be to you righteousness and sanctification. No fiber of the root of selfishness can exist in the heart of the physician who entertains Christ as an honored guest. When you are emptied of self, Christ will supply the vacuum, and you will be actuated by the same spirit, moved by the same unselfish interest, that was manifested in the work of Christ for the perishing souls of men. 1MR 206.1

You will then no more think of charging exorbitant prices for your services because it is the custom of worldly physicians to do so, than you will think of dishonoring and betraying your Lord. Your soul will be absorbed in the life-giving power of the Sun of Righteousness, and unconsciously you will shed an influence that will bless those around you. You will work not as mere business men, looking at your work from a worldly point of view, but as Christian physicians, you will render service, taking of no man more than is honestly your due. Your eye will be single to the glory of God, and no matter what may be the consequences to yourself, your first consideration will be how you may show forth the power and majesty of the truth. 1MR 207.1

Those who thus practice the truth, will know that there is a love, stronger, deeper, more constraining than the natural love of a mother to her son,—it is the love of the Saviour to the saved, and their love to Him in return. Truth occupies the citadel of the soul, and should the Saviour search the temple, He would find no buyers and sellers to condemn; for God is enthroned in the heart. The Lord has promised, “A new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.... And cause you to walk in My statutes, and ye shall keep My judgments.... And ye shall be My people, and I will be your God” (Ezekiel 36:26-28). 1MR 207.2

Many of the physicians who today claim to believe the present truth, are represented to me as being in no better a spiritual condition than were the priests and rulers in the time of Christ; for their religion is like India rubber, capable of being stretched to suit their circumstances at different times and on different occasions. Exorbitant prices were exacted from those who desired beasts for sacrifice at the temple, but Jesus rebuked this unholy traffic. Divinity flashed through humanity, as He went into the temple of God, “and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves; ... saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called ... the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves” (Mark 11:15-17). 1MR 207.3

The same words are applicable to many practicing physicians who are called Christians. The medical profession is no less under the jurisdiction of the Lord, under the rule of the standard of righteousness, than is the farmer, the merchant, or the minister of the gospel. The physician is as much under obligation to represent pure and undefiled religion in his business transactions as is any other man in any profession. He is required to love and obey God, to relieve the sick and afflicted, for Christ's sake. The love and pity of Christ must pervade the soul, and the physician that has the fear of God before his eyes will deal tenderly with Christ's poor, and justly with all men; for he will realize that he must meet the record of the deeds done in the body at the judgment bar of God. All work done for Christ's sake, unselfishly, will obtain a quality, achieve a success, beyond all earthly compensation; for Christ's righteousness will be imputed to such a worker. Every physician should be inspired by the love of Christ, that his work may have upon it the fashioning hand of the great Physician. In Christ we behold the characteristics of the true physician. 1MR 208.1

The question as to whether the medical profession is to be controlled by Christian principles in regard to compensation, or by the selfish standard of the world, has long been ignored, but can be ignored no longer. Shall the pure elevating principles of Christianity be exemplified in the physician's life? Shall his practice come under the rule and supervision of the church? Shall he practice self-denial for Christ's sake? or is it only for a few men of more common occupation to follow in the footsteps of Jesus, while merchants, lawyers, and professional men, go free to follow the bent of a selfish will? Is the world to see no representatives of Christianity in the medical profession? and in the men who occupy positions of trust in our institutions? 1MR 208.2

I was shown that the truth must enter the heart of every physician among us, that it may have a sanctifying influence upon his life; but as a general thing our physicians know not what heart religion means. With the light of redemption shining all around, the soul perishes for the knowledge of the sacred and divine. The heart is desolate and dreary, though the Spirit of God through His Word invites men to rest in the hope of the glory of God. 1MR 209.1

The work of the medical profession calls for men who love and fear God. The people have long been afflicted with unconverted men, who have acted independently of the church, and have followed their own unsanctified judgment, imperiled our institutions by their unsanctified independence. But our institutions need not accept unconsecrated men and women, because they know not what better to do; for converted physicians will be raised up to take their place in the work. Unless the principles of divine truth control the physicians as they have not done hitherto, God will be dishonored, souls will be lost, and the institution established for the benefit of the sick and suffering, will not meet the mind of the Spirit of God. 1MR 209.2

God has been greatly dishonored by the course of many in the medical profession who claim to believe the truth; for in character they have not been representatives of Christ. An inconsistent, unprincipled life in a physician should be looked upon as a matter of grave importance, and he should be dealt with as Christ directed His church to deal with offenders. If an offender will not listen to admonition, and will not change his course of action, he should be separated from the fellowship of the church. Those who take the part of the evil doer and sympathize with him, and give him patronage, place themselves in position where they are an offense to God. 1MR 209.3

There are some occupations which are not open to Christians. They are not legitimate callings for the servant of God, and they can engage in them only at the peril of their souls, for through these occupations they are exposed to the miasmal influence of the world. God desires not that His people should keep company with extortioners and robbers, even though they may wear an appearance of sanctity. There are occupations in which it is impossible to work reform; for they are thoroughly bad, and that which can be said to those who persist in engaging in them, is “Depart, ye thieves.” But the profession of medicine is a legitimate calling, and there is a remedy for all its evils. Christ may be represented in the character and action of every physician, and all who claim to be Christians should expect to work as He worked, having a fair price for their services, and exacting no more, although they see that they could obtain more by following the selfish customs of the world. It is just as consistent for the minister of the gospel to demand an excessive salary for visiting the sick, comforting the desponding, bringing peace and joy to the oppressed, as for the physician to make large charges for his professional visits. 1MR 210.1

The work of the Christian physician is to bear on its face the signature of self-denial, and not have even the appearance of fraud and extortion. It has become general among physicians who have not the fear of God before them, to hide that which is plain and simple under the guise of mystery in order that they may have more influence with the people. But this is not after Christ's order. God alone is veiled in unapproachable mystery. When dealing with humanity, Jesus made every dark thing plain to the understanding of men, and promised at His ascension to send the Comforter, whose office work was to reveal truth. In heaven's courts fraud and dishonesty in the physician is known by the same term as fraud and extortion in the merchant or mechanic. Overcharges on the part of a physician for rendering some simple service to an unfortunate brother, is just as much grinding the face of the poor as when a lawyer demands exorbitant fees for his service, or a merchant requires an unreasonable price for his goods. 1MR 210.2

The character and destiny of man in probationary time is determined by the principles which control his action. Selfishness is an attribute of Satan, and if this governs the life, it will be manifested in any profession or occupation, however noble or philanthropic it might be represented to be. A multitude of sins has been covered under the profession of medicine, although there has been a witness to every unholy transaction, a just verdict rendered in the decision of every case. Many things that are thought lawful and right in this profession are unlawful, and they need the scourge of small cords in the hand of Christ that they may be driven out. Many good and merciful acts have been done by practicing physicians, but I was shown that as a general thing the medical profession has become a den of thieves. In connection with the cause of God the work of the Christian physician is to be beautified by the presence of Christ; for He would cooperate with the physician who professes His name. But when men become extortioners, all He can do is to drive them from His courts. 1MR 211.1

Those who would enter the medical profession should be educated from a higher point of view than that found in the popular schools of the land. We do not appreciate the value of the sacred truth we profess to believe, until we see the necessity of embodying it in our practical life. It is only as spiritual and moral integrity become an abiding characteristic, at all times, in all places, that we are able to place a proper estimate upon the holy faith once delivered to the saints. Besides the special science required that men may be intelligent physicians, men need a daily training in the school of Christ, that they may learn to work as Jesus worked, in purity, in unselfishness, in holiness before God. In this way they will be fitting to enter the higher school of patriarchs and prophets, to associate with redeemed and sanctified of all ages. It requires a man after God's divine measurement to be a successful physician, representing the great Physician. He must be a continual learner; for no student is ever prepared to cease from study, even though he has graduated from the most approved course of preparation. 1MR 211.2

There are many novices in the medical profession, men who have wicked hearts, who take advantage of their position, and corrupt not only the souls but the bodies of those under their care. Their reward in the day of final account will be according to their works. Only daily faith in Christ will make and keep the physician pure before God; for Satan will stand at the side of the physician to tempt him, to open avenues to practice dishonesty, to commit grave sins under the cloak of his profession. God looks upon the heart, and understands the spirit, that actuates every deed. By and by the Judge of all the earth will open a great book in which the record of every case is kept. It will then be revealed that there has been a witness present by the bedside of the sick, who has made a record of every case, the circumstances surrounding the individual, the treatment given, and there is written the fidelity or unfaithfulness of every practitioner. Let the Christian physician look up in the sick room, and say, “God is here; His eye is upon me. He reads my every thought, and notices my every action. I will be a faithful servant of Jesus Christ. I will be one who shall preserve honor, honesty, and truth. I will have the tenderness, the compassion, the mercy, and longsuffering of Jesus. I will comfort, I will bless this sufferer. If Jesus will work with me, I will be a helper to the needy.” 1MR 212.1

O, what a physician may be who is a servant of our Lord Jesus Christ! The light of the glory of God may shine upon the man who thus is a laborer together with God. Christianity in the life in business transactions, in professional practices, will be as a power in the earth. “Ye are the light of the world” (Matthew 5:14), said Christ. The leaven of sanctification and holiness must be brought into the life and character. In our publishing house, in our Sanitarium and College, we should watch with the utmost care that we do not act from selfish motives. Life at best is short, and this little period of probation should be pure, lived with an eye single to the glory of God. We should not be double minded, now serving the Lord and again serving selfish purposes in all our plans and actions. The selfishness, the carelessness of spirit that is manifested in regard to the words spoken, the habits indulged, the maxims uttered, are all sowing seed that will yield a baneful harvest. 1MR 213.1

From the heart of the work an influence is carried, even by some who are called foreign missionaries, that is not pleasing to God. Many are not emptied of self, that are not vessels unto honor. If they had never had a connection with men who were unsanctified they would have done far better work; but the principles they have woven into the character are not an acceptable kind to God, and He will not minister of His grace to the spirit they cherish. Then how can they be lights to the world: How can they be laborers together with God? How can they be called lightbearers? The maxims of the world have been woven with the precious truth of God. Men are deceived in every department and branch of the work, because of their own selfish desires, their selfish plans; for their hearts are not imbued with the spirit of Christ. The example of Christ is lost sight of. Many are unable to clearly distinguish between the truths of God and the frauds of men, and no plat of their religious experience stands forth entirely weeded from the noxious tares of selfishness. Many profess to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, but selfish purposes and projects actually shut out the view of the eternal realities, and the world is not slow to discern its own standard. I have been shown that many make pretense of godliness scorning the too apparent inconsistencies, yet at the same time encouraging themselves in putting God out of their knowledge. Men barter and haggle for little or large advantage as the circumstances may be, and in so doing they barter away their security to the kingdom of God. They value that kingdom less than did Judas his Lord. 1MR 213.2

God calls upon men in the medical profession not to feel that they are to stand apart from the disciples of the church, that they may carry out their own selfish projects. Our faith is misrepresented by men who are out of Christ, and many souls are misled. The stumbling blocks must be taken out of the way, or those who have not submitted themselves to the discipline of the church, must change their course. If they determine to leave the fellowship of the church, let a voice of warning follow them, that the people may know that they are not in harmony with the brethren, and the church will not be responsible for their course of action, or cover their transgressions. In this way many who sincerely believe the truth may be prevented from being led away to put confidence in men whose course of action God disapproves. 1MR 214.1

Let no man say that his conversation is in heaven, while self is interposed between him and his God; for his thoughts, his works all testify that he is groveling in the dust. The standard must be elevated. We do not plead for inactivity, we would not have one soul blunt his activities, but only purify his enterprises of all selfishness, ambition, pride and self-exaltation. Let pure and undefiled religion be the controlling power in all our institutions. Let it be practiced by all who are connected with the work. Those who make a profession of godliness, and have a corrupt, sensual heart, will develop themselves, that they may be known by those around them. He who is scheming for himself will work in a way to bring profit to himself, while he is very careful to all appearance to see that others shall in no case take advantage of their place or position to reap benefits that he himself obtained. This carefulness on his part to exclude others from dishonest advantage pacifies his conscience, for he believes he is guarding the interest of the institution. 1MR 214.2

O man, the books of heaven bear the record of your deeds; for to every transaction there has been a Witness that will not lie, and by thy works thou shalt be justified, and by thy works thou shalt be condemned in the day when every case is tried, and it is too late for wrongs to be righted. Then it will be seen that only those are saved who brought into their life the maxims of Jesus. 1MR 215.1

Many have deceived the world, betrayed the cause of Christ, and put the Lord of glory to an open shame by misrepresenting His character. These lie against the truth. They countenance and practice principles that in no way correspond with the truth of God. Many are willing to benefit themselves at another's disadvantage, and this proves that the truth has not been brought into the sanctuary of the soul, and that God's law is a dead letter to them. The commandment is, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God will all thy heart, and ... thy neighbor as thyself” (Matthew 22:37-39). They have failed to learn the lesson of the pure Son of God. The True Witness says, “I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent” (Revelation 2:4, 5). 1MR 215.2

“I am a Christian,” must be repeated, “and I must love my neighbor as myself. I must do unto others as I would that they should do to me. I must not exalt myself as a privileged character, and look down upon others as of no value. I am a Christian, and must esteem others better than myself. I am a Christian, and must not join any ring or party which would connive at evil, no matter how trivial might seem the transgression.” It was a small transgression that opened upon our world the floodgates of woe. The act of sin may be one that is called common, and the eternal ruin will be common. We need not seek to excuse ourselves because men in high esteem are guilty of strange misdemeanors, and place sin in wrong light before the world. The uprightness of all who make high professions, and practice iniquity is known a pretense before that God whose eye reads the hearts of men. So few are found who act upon the principles of the Bible, that we can say indeed that many shall seek to enter in and shall not be able. Christ's followers are a little flock. 1MR 216.1

Those who have not lost their first love will have a care for the souls of those with whom they are associated; but if one in responsible position is found whose morals are tainted with dishonesty or impurity, be on your guard that his godless spirit and example do not contaminate your soul, and so the contagion of evil spread. The moral tone of piety among us must be raised, and in order that it may be, we must take time for the personal culture of heart religion. Let each one feel, I must be an example in patience. I must do good, whether others appreciate my motives or not. I must not stand allied with evil, or cover it with a mantle of false charity. Bible charity is not sentimentalism, but love in active exercise. To heal the hurt of the daughter of My people, slightly, saying, “Peace, peace; when there is no peace” (Jeremiah 6:14; 8:11), is called charity. To confederate together, to call sin holiness and truth, is called charity; but it is the counterfeit article. The false and the spurious are in the world, and we should closely examine our hearts that we may know whether or not we possess the genuine charity. Genuine charity will not create distrust, and evil work. It will not blunt the sword of the spirit so that it does no execution. Those who would cover evil under false charity, say to the sinner, “It shall be well with thee.” Thank God there is a charity that will not be corrupted; there is a wisdom that cometh from above, that is (mark it) first pure, then peaceable, and without hypocrisy, and the fruits of righteousness is sown of them that make peace. This is a description of heaven-born, heaven-bred charity. Charity loves the sinner but hates the sin, and will warn him faithfully of his danger, pointing him to the Lamb of God who taketh away the sin of the world. Sin is not to be cloaked, but to be taken away. 1MR 216.2

The love that is of heavenly birth is a resistless power, and it can be obtained only by a living connection with God. Would you move the hearts of men, then you must come into actual contact with the God of love. God must first take hold of you if you would take hold of others. But instead of desiring such an exalted position as to become a laborer together with God, ministers and physicians, men of responsibility seek preeminence among their brethren, and strive to obtain the highest wages for their services. Sin always attends such ambition. How faint is the line of demarcation between the church and the world; but why should you try to blend the service of God and mammon? The world's Redeemer has declared, “Ye cannot serve two masters.” 1MR 217.1

The people of God can be united only through the power of the Holy Ghost, and this is the union which will stand the test. Christ prayed that His people might be one as He and the Father were one; but can this union exist, can spiritual life be maintained, if you fail to associate with those of like precious faith in close Christian fellowship and devotion? If you think you can live a Christian life without taking advantage of Christian privileges, you are deceived by the enemy of your soul. I am terribly in earnest to cry aloud and spare not, and show my people their transgression and the house of Jacob their sins. 1MR 218.1

In whatever occupation you may be, whether physicians, merchants, ministers, or men in other walks of life, you have no right to laden yourselves down with grievous, heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, to be pressed under many and varied responsibilities, until you feel that you have no time to pray, and excuse yourself on the plea that you have so much to do. If you have much to do, how essential it is that you have the Lord God of Israel to stand by your side, that you may bear the yoke evenly with Him who was meek and lowly in heart. Christ says, “Without Me ye can do nothing” (John 15:5). You may well be alarmed for your soul, if you allow cares to supplant the truth of God in the heart. If your associates are worldlings who flatter you, telling you how smart you are, and what great things you can do, and love this unhallowed nonsense, you may well feel that you are in peril; for your moral taste is perverted, your perceptions blunted. You have forsaken the cool snow waters of Lebanon for water that comes from another place. You cannot preserve your spirituality unless you feed on Christ, eating His flesh and drinking His blood. Every moment is charged with eternal responsibilities. 1MR 218.2

In the dealings of man with his fellowman every transaction may be marked with the highest integrity; and yet, though justice and equity mark your business affairs, you must not permit yourself to be so engrossed with the things of time, that you will fail to give attention to the things of eternal interest. The mind and body must not be treated with indiscretion. You must not act presumptuously, for you are not your own, you have been bought with a price, and are under obligation to keep God's property in a good condition. You are not required to protract your labors until you are worn out and exhausted, and cannot engage in religious exercises for the preservation of spiritual health. When you make your spiritual prosperity a thing of a secondary importance, you abuse the property of God. By undue devotion to business, you defraud the soul of the opportunity to feast upon the words of eternal life, and so receive not the sustenance and inspiration necessary for the maintenance of spiritual life. Thus you fail to become the light of the world, and cannot represent your professed Lord to the people with whom you associate. 1MR 219.1

It is true that every moment is precious, and not one of them is to be wasted; but it is when you obtain the grace of the Holy Spirit through faith in God, that you are qualified for the performance of your various duties and can work with an eye single to the glory of God. Look at the days and weeks and months of the past, and see if your life service has not been one long, complicated robbery of God, because you have failed to remember Him, and have left eternity out of your reckoning. By neglecting spiritual things, you have not only robbed your own soul, but the souls of your family; for by seeking temporal enrichment to the neglect of heavenly enlightenment, you have not been in a condition either physically or mentally to educate and train your children to keep the way of the Lord. How long shall this kind of robbery continue on the part of men who place a high estimate upon their services, and yet leave out of their work the one thing that makes their labors acceptable to God,—heart devotion, true piety? You dismiss God from your thoughts, pray scarcely at all, and yet claim for the exercise of your finite wisdom a large compensation in money. And yet Christ declares, “Without Me ye can do nothing” (John 15:5).” What shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” (Mark 8:36). Will you exchange your hope of heaven for worldly gain? Many are doing this very thing; for Satan held out his tempting bribe, and they accepted his terms. Should the tree be cut down, it would lie prone to the earth, lost, lost, eternally lost! 1MR 219.2

Worldly success, even when obtained at the loss of spiritual life, is often looked upon as the blessing of providence; but it is disaster, it is death. Better far would be poverty, the cross, self-denial, self-sacrifice, and shattered worldly hopes. Better far would be the world's verdict, “poor,” than be written poor in the books of heaven. To be written in heaven as one who is rich in spiritual graces is of far greater honor than to sit with princes on earth, and forfeit the kingdom of God. Let it be the ambition of those who profess to believe present truth, to be written as men whose lives are hid with Christ in God, men whom gold cannot buy, who though tempted as was Moses, like him, esteemed the reproaches of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt. 1MR 220.1

God permits men to pass under the fire of temptation that they may see if there is alloy in their characters; for they cannot inherit their heirship to the eternal crown unless they are tested and proved by the Lord. Take time to watch and pray, to assure yourselves that you have the presence of Jesus, and can counsel with Him in regard to the work He has given into your hands, as did Enoch of old. You who occupy important positions of responsibility, how much you need Jesus, how much you need to watch and pray that you may be fervent in spirit, serving the Lord. Will you gather business to your soul, and leave Christ out on the plea that you have not time to commune with Him? Why violate conscience? Why put such confidence in your own finite strength? 1MR 220.2

Temptation will come to every soul, and if you accept one temptation, stronger ones will follow, and others will be influenced by your example. Gold is not only a standard in the market, but a standard of character among men. But though the world judges by this standard, let the Christian say, “I am not bound to be rich, but I am under obligation to be righteous and to represent my Redeemer. I will not imperil my soul by declaring I must have a certain revenue. I have purposed in my heart that I will not give Satan reason to triumph over me because I endanger my spiritual life and become the servant of sin. I will not cultivate or encourage selfishness and covetousness, for it is the ruin of the world.” Satan was vanquished when he came to Christ, with his specious temptation, offering a vast reward for the tarnishing of the integrity of the Son of God. He now seeks through the avenue of the world to corrupt the integrity of those who would overcome through the grace of Christ; but let every professed follower of Jesus say, “Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve” (Matthew 4:10). Letter 41, 1890, pp. 1-22. (To Dr. J. H. Kellogg, December 24, 1890.) 1MR 221.1

White Estate

Washington, D. C.,

August 26, 1953.