Manuscript Releases, vol. 6 [Nos. 347-418]


Pastoral Evangelism

Let everyone who has eaten of the bread which came down from heaven labor in all simplicity to teach others what they must do to be saved.... Those who are not doing their duty, who are not helping others to see the importance of the truth for this time, must feel dissatisfied with themselves. Satan takes advantage of this feature in their experience, and leads them to criticize and find fault. If they were busily engaged in seeking to know and do the will of God, they would feel such a burden for perishing souls, such an unrest of mind, that they could not be restrained from fulfilling the commission, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature,” “teaching them ... all things whatsoever I have commanded.”—Letter 169, 1904, pp. 6, 7. (To the Ministers in Southern California, April 27, 1904.) 6MR 62.1

God says to those who profess to believe in him, “Go forth into all parts of the world, and diffuse the light of my truth, that men and women may be led to Christ.” Let us awaken to our duty, and do all that we can to help forward the Lord's work.”—Letter 56, 1901, p. 5. (To Brother C. H. Jones, typed June 26, 1901.) 6MR 62.2

When you strike deep root in Christ, you will bear fruit to God's glory. Your good works will be fragrant to Him.—Letter 13, 1902, p. 2. (To Brother and Sister Caro, February 3, 1902.) 6MR 63.1

Do not move hastily in establishing interests in new places, in a way that will divide your workers and your means, so that your force will be weakened. Wait until some of the interests that have been started more nearly approach perfection.... But understand that this is not meant to hinder any individual worker from entering any place to which he is directed by the Spirit of God to do house to house work. This is work that ought to be done. All the efforts that can be made should be made to reach the people in every place.... 6MR 63.2

Be sure that the Holy Spirit is guiding; and then move forward solidly and wisely.—Letter 87, 1902, pp. 2, 4, 5. (To Brother Kilgore, June 11, 1902.) 6MR 63.3

Our great burden should be to represent Him [Christ] aright. Our work consists not in seeing how much we can do on the right hand and on the left, but rather in seeing how faithfully, as evangelists, we can represent Christ Jesus in His ministry. Both the high and the low among God's workers are to take their position as ministers of the Word,—evangelists,—seeking to represent the Saviour in every place where they can reach the people.... 6MR 63.4

God will help us as ministers to walk worthy of the vocation wherewith we are called. He will help us to strengthen one another in the most holy faith. At times I am in an agony of distress over the indifference our ministers manifest toward God's instruction to His ambassadors to close the windows of the soul earthward and open them heavenward, that the light flooding heaven's threshold may shine into the chambers of every mind. When the mind is filled with the light of heaven, the human agent is given power to reach the hearts of others.—Manuscript 127, 1902, 2, 8. (“Words to Ministers,” Talk, September 16, 1902.) 6MR 64.1

This personal effort is that which the people must have. Heart must be brought close to heart and in every soul we have to see one whom Christ died to save. This work is not pleasant to all, but it is a work that is to be done, and it is essential in the formation and building up of a church and in educating you to become able ministers.... Many love to preach but they do not love to minister; but this is the work which is really more essential than preaching alone. There is to be practical instruction given in regard to the daily Christian life and duty. We are to present in our own life patience, meekness and forbearance, long-suffering and cheerfulness, joyfulness in the truth,—but not a love for controversy.... 6MR 64.2

The salvation of sinners requires a great outlay of positive power. God expects His workers to do something; to let light shine forth in good works that flash light upon the pathway of the sinner and turn his steps from the gates of hell.”—Letter 60, 1886, pp. 4, 9. (To John and Julia Corliss, December 25, 1886.) 6MR 64.3

The churches that have not life in themselves, that have lost their spiritual discernment, call for ministers to come to their help, to bring them the breath of life. But the ministers have other work to do. They must carry the message of truth to those who know it not. Those ministers who hover about the churches, who have not a clear cut message, which, like a sharp, two-edged sword, cuts both ways, will do the churches harm. They will not work for the salvation of souls that are in great peril because they know not the truth, and they will die spiritually themselves, and trouble and discourage those who try to help them.... 6MR 65.1

Many love to preach, but they have very little experience in ministering. Search the Scriptures with the families you visit. Christ's work was to put believers in possession of every essential truth, that by searching, they might discover other precious gems.... 6MR 65.2

When a discourse is given, precious seed is sown. But if personal efforts are not made to prepare the soil for that seed, it does not take root in the heart. Unless the heart is softened and subdued by the Spirit of God, much of the discourse is lost.... 6MR 65.3

The Lord Jesus expects more of you than you give; yes, a great deal more. He has called and chosen you. Every man, according to his several ability, has been given his work. You are to occupy a place as a laborer together with God, and as his agent, you are to gather other agencies, and unite them with those already in the work, that the instrumentalities for winning souls to look to Christ, may be as many as possible.... 6MR 65.4

The meaning of the words, “I am made a minister,” is too little comprehended. Those who preach the word of life to others should be weighted with the Spirit of Christ, as was Paul. If the minister goes to his work light-loaded, if he carries no burden for the people, he shows that he has mistaken his calling. He has not that spirit of intercession and consecration to God that would enable him to receive light from God. Those who work for God must feed upon Christ; for spiritually they are built up from what they eat. If Christ is formed within, the hope of glory, they have wisdom from God, not only to eat of Christ, but to feed the flock of God in due season, giving to every man his portion.—Manuscript 7, 1891, 3, 6, 8, 19-20, 22. (“Christian Service in the Living Church,” June 10, 1891.) 6MR 66.1

Those who are shepherds of the flock should impress upon the people the importance of acting upon right principles in eating, drinking and dressing. They should warn the people to forsake every practice, restrain every appetite that endangers health and life.—Letter 19, 1892, p. 3. (To Dr. J. H. Kellogg, August 5, 1892.) 6MR 66.2

When the work seems to go hard, dip thy words and spirit into the oil of God's love; and then, under the working of the Holy Spirit, thou canst pray with all earnestness, and preach with all power. And God giveth the increase.—Letter 50, 1897, p. 5. (To Brethren Daniells, Palmer, and Colcord, March 12, 1897.) 6MR 66.3

All need to feel daily the converting power of the Holy Spirit, that they may bear much fruit for the Lord. It is not the one who preaches the gospel that provides the efficiency that makes his efforts successful. It is the unseen worker standing behind the minister who brings conviction and conversion to souls.... 6MR 67.1

Ministry means more than sermonizing. It means earnest, personal effort. And there are many different kinds of work to be done. Those who have gained an experience in God's service are to take young, inexperienced workers with them into the harvest-field, teaching them how to work successfully for the conversion of souls. They are to exhort the church-members to qualify themselves for service.—Letter 21, 1903, pp. 3, 6. (To “Those Who at the Last General Conference Chose Australia as Their Field of Labor,” January 26, 1903.) 6MR 67.2

If you are to give discourses, your mind is not vigorous enough, although intensely active, to sustain the strain of speaking and visiting and writing. You should let your mind rest in a great degree when you engage in an effort to present new and startling truths to the people, the reception of which involves a cross. You need to carefully select your subject, make your discourses short, and important points of doctrine very plain. Take up one point at a time in a discourse, make it strong and clear and plain, with reasons drawn from the word of God that all may understand. Your discourses should be short. When you preach at great length the mind of the hearer cannot grasp one quarter of what you say.... 6MR 67.3

Now you are to engage in an important work and let the Lord come into your counsels. Preach short, govern your voices, put all the pathos and melody into it you can, and this terrible exhaustion that is liable to come through long protracted preaching will be avoided. Remember that the whole counsel of God is not to be brought out in one discourse. Let the people have the heavenly food in such measure that they can retain it and carry it away with them and digest it; so that their minds can comprehend the truth, and their souls be impressed with it.... 6MR 68.1

But the humble devoted worker feeling his own weakness and depending only upon God will realize the strength and sufficiency of the Mighty Helper.—Letter 47, 1886, pp. 2-4, 8, 9. (To Brother Bourdeau, June 5, 1886.) 6MR 68.2

The work of him who is called to the ministry is not simply to preach, but to minister to the people by coming in personal contact with them. Wherever there is a failure on the part of the minister to do this kind of work, weakness results to the people; and no one should take upon him the sacred responsibility of the gospel minister unless he is willing to undergo all the labor that such a calling demands.... 6MR 68.3

I am greatly distressed because that while there are so few preachers, there are still fewer ministers. After the sermons are preached the minister has a work to do in visiting those who have been impressed with the truth, and the work of God is greatly hindered when the expositor of Bible truth does not follow up the interest as a wise master-builder, making the most of his opportunity to press home upon the understanding and the conscience the truth which he has presented to the people. He must be a laborer together with God, a zealous, interested worker, visiting those who have heard his expositions of truth.... 6MR 68.4

The solemn work of the gospel minister is to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery which from the beginning of the world has been hid in God. If one enters upon this work choosing the least self-sacrificing part of it, contenting himself with preaching, and leaving the work of ministering for some one else to do he need not expect that his labors will be acceptable to God. Souls for whom Christ died are perishing for well directed personal labor, and when the minister is not willing to be a servant of the people, as Jesus has directed in his word, then he has mistaken his calling.... 6MR 69.1

The very men who are presenting the truth to them had need to learn the first lessons of what constituted the work devolving on a gospel minister. It is not sermonizing, The minister of the gospel should be far from cherishing an envious spirit, fearing that another may receive too much credit if he shares his labor with him in the office or in more general life. Selfishness has so actuated men that the work of God has been hindered and the message of God has been refused.... 6MR 69.2

The churches have been so trained that they feel no special responsibilities resting upon them to visit, to talk the truth, to pray with and for one another, to visit the sick, to encourage them, to give sympathy and love, and make it manifest that in Christ they are members one of another.—Letter 3, 1892, pp. 1, 4, 15, 16. (To Brother Curtis, January 16, 1892.) 6MR 69.3

Our message is a life and death message, and we must let it appear as it is, the great power of God. We are to present it in all its telling force. Then the Lord will make it effectual.... 6MR 70.1

Public effort alone will not suffice for the work that is to be done. By personal, house-to-house labor, ministers should seek to reach the people where they are.... 6MR 70.2

All should be taught how to work. Especially should those who are newly come to the faith be educated to become laborers together with God. If this duty is neglected, the work of the minister is incomplete.... 6MR 70.3

We talk and write much of the neglected poor; should not some attention be given also to the neglected rich? Thousands of rich men are starving for spiritual food. Many in official life feel their need of something which they have not. Few among them go to church; for they receive no benefit. The teaching they hear does not touch the soul. Are we to make no personal effort in their behalf? 6MR 70.4

Some will ask, “Can we not reach them with publications?” No; there are many who cannot be reached in this way. It is personal effort that they need. Are they to perish without any special warning? It was not so in ancient times. God's servants were sent to tell those in high places that they could find peace and rest only in the Lord Jesus Christ. 6MR 70.5

From the light given me I know that a plain “Thus said the Lord” should now be spoken to men who have influence and authority in the world. If they will repent and be converted, God will use them in His cause. 6MR 70.6

We have a work to do for the ministers of other churches. Our ministers should seek to come near to them. Pray for and with these men, for whom Christ is interceding. A solemn responsibility is theirs. As Christ's messengers, we should manifest a deep, earnest interest in these shepherds of the flock.—Manuscript 19, 1900, 5, 10, 11. (“A Perfect Ministry,” typed March 5, 1900.) 6MR 70.7

The preacher spices his discourses with humorous remarks, presenting the truth in a ludicrous manner and misrepresenting those who believe it. These amusing presentations please the audience, and ridicule serves to banish conviction from many minds. Often the teacher has no real knowledge of the subject he is treating upon, but the hearers accept his statements without bringing them to the test of Scripture, and think that now they are released from the cross of obeying the truth, they can have peace. 6MR 71.1

Many have accepted the truth without digging down deep to understand its foundation principles, and when it is opposed, they forget the arguments and evidences that sustain it. It should be impressed upon all that true and abiding knowledge can be gained only by earnest labor and persevering energy. Were the minds of the people brought under discipline by thorough searching of the Scriptures, there would be hundreds converted to the truth where there is one today. 6MR 71.2

The sermons preached make good impressions, and awaken in many hearts a real desire to be Christians; if the impressions were followed up by personal labor, there would be seen many temples for the indwelling of the truth and the spirit of God.... 6MR 71.3

God's work is not to be done in this bungling, slip-shod manner. When a minister enters upon any part of the field, he should work that field thoroughly. Let him not trust in sermonizing, and neglect personal labor. He should give directness to the Bible teaching, let it be brought home to every conscience.—Manuscript 4, 1893, 7-9. (Untitled, January 10, 1893.) 6MR 71.4

Divine knowledge may become human knowledge. Every minister should study closely the manner of Christ's teaching. They must take in his lessons. There is not one in twenty who knows the beauty, the real essence, of Christ's ministry. They are to find it out. Then they will become partakers of the rich fruit of his teachings. They will weave them so fully into their own life and practice, that the ideas and principles that Christ brought into his lessons will be brought into their teaching. The truth will blossom and bear the noblest kind of fruit. And the worker's own heart will be warmed; yea, it will burn with the vivifying spiritual life which they infuse into the minds of others. Then all this tame sermonizing will come to an end; for frequently this is an exhibition of self, rather than the fruit that the teacher bears who has been at the feet of Jesus and learned of Him.... 6MR 72.1

God looks for fruit in his church—fruit that responds to the lessons of Christ, worthy of the truth we profess to believe, and revealing the wisdom and mercy of Christ. The Lord calls for a converted ministry,—a ministry that will meet the people where they are, that will agree with them wherever they can, but that will not deny the truth. We are not to keep ourselves shut within four walls, so that our light cannot come to others. There is common ground where we may meet those not of our faith, where we may agree in principles and in regard to the lesson of Christ. Few will become combative over these holy principles.—Manuscript 104, 1898, 7, 11. (“Christ's Manner of Teaching,” typed August 24, 1898.) 6MR 72.2

It is God's great day of preparation, and therefore every minister of Jesus Christ should have in his course of action, in the burden of his labor a zeal and living interest, and intensity in his efforts which is appropriate to the truth as it is for this time, which is claimed to be the last message of mercy to our world. Well, then, we cannot sleep, we cannot be indifferent, we must labor for the precious souls around us of men and women, we must work with all our might, for the Lord is coming. 6MR 73.1

The real laborers will be care-worn, oppressed in spirit, and they will feel as did Christ when he wept over Jerusalem, when they see crookedness and impenitence, and when they see people who will not listen to the Word of the Lord, they will feel as he felt.— Manuscript 13, 1888, 7. (Sermon, December 1, 1888.) 6MR 73.2