Manuscript Releases, vol. 17 [Nos. 1236-1300]


MR No. 1265—Minds of Committee Members to be Worked by the Holy Spirit; The Marks of Christlikeness

There are many things that should be conducted in a more serious way. There have been board meetings and council meetings where certain principles have been placed before the board and resolutions voted to be carried out. Elder Olsen has supposed that the matter would be conducted on correct principles, and he trusted matters too much to others to carry out. But there were unfaithful stewards in responsible positions who appeared to sanction the propositions but who had not the least intention of carrying them out. They would do the opposite of that which came before them for their decisions. Therefore wrongs were practiced and evils were carried out in untruthful, deceptive lines. 17MR 166.1

Some minds are not worked by the Holy Spirit. They are so constituted, through following their own human judgment and using common fire in their service as stewards of God, that their ways have been accepted as the Lord's ways, and solemn, sacred matters which relate to the various lines of work have been carried in altogether a different manner than the propositions made. One or more men gave assent to measures laid out before the board or councils, but all the time they decided they would have their own way and carry out the matter as they chose. This was the light presented to me. Elder Olsen's advisers were blinding his eyes so that he should see through the eyes of these men who were preaching under a deception. 17MR 166.2

This is the reason I was obliged to take the position that there was not the voice of God in the General Conference management and decisions. Methods and plans would be devised that God did not sanction, and yet Elder Olsen made it appear that the decisions of the General Conference were as the voice of God. Many of the positions taken, going forth as the voice of the General Conference, have been the voice of one, two, or three men who were misleading the Conference. There were things in regard to Sunday work, in regard to the color line, and in regard to the Sentinel, that better never have been introduced in the Conference. The Lord did not preside in many meetings. There were some loud voices and urgent pressing of things that were backed by a will and determination that savored more of the common fire than the sacred. Plans were made that were all out of line with the unction or the leadings of the Spirit of God. 17MR 167.1

In regard to the Sunday question, we cannot handle it as a Conference. The circumstances that will arise will determine such questions. The Lord gives us light if we will seek for it by humble prayer. Wisdom and knowledge from heaven will come as to just when, how, and where we should work, when this light is needed. I am afraid of the many resolutions framed to come before the Conference, and acted upon without special seeking of the Lord. There have been resolutions brought into the Conference and without due consideration acted upon and made law, and many will pay no regard to these laws for they were found to be a binding about of our work and binding of false principles upon the conferences. 17MR 167.2

Young, inexperienced men who are unprepared rush ahead, not knowing whether they are right or wrong. Their wisdom is exalted above the wisdom of God. The Lord would have His people have real, genuine faith, for without faith it is impossible to please God. “And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:27, 28). 17MR 167.3

Ambition for the highest position excluded Satan from heaven, and he means to work upon every human being to lead them to sin as he has sinned. But ambition to do large things wears away the life with a great many perplexities. The invitation of Christ is, “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. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). 17MR 168.1

Ambition in the disciples of Christ, and thirst to be highest, make them represent the men of the world. They are sure to lose Christ out of their hearts and they [are sure to] find disappointment following disappointment. Many in this world who are first in privileges and count themselves in many respects talented above others, will in the future great test find themselves far below the humble, meek, and lowly ones. God's estimate is accurate. Man's measurement is deceiving. Humility and the disposition to serve God by serving others are the true marks of Christlikeness, and they will be truly honored in the kingdom of God. 17MR 168.2

It is not enough that man follows the dictates of conscience. The mind must be enlightened as to what is God's will, and then an enlightened conscience will be an enlightened, intelligent will.—Manuscript 33, 1891. 17MR 168.3

Ellen G. White Estate

Washington, D. C.,

July 9, 1987.

Entire Manuscript.