Manuscript Releases, vol. 16 [Nos. 1186-1235]


An Appeal for the Barren Fields

My brethren and sisters, I wish to present before you the necessities of the destitute fields in your sight. In His great mercy the Lord has furnished these fields with laborers who have precious talents. Means is now needed to carry forward the work. I present this matter before the churches in Iowa, praying that the Lord may impress hearts with the needs of His work, that gifts for these barren fields may flow into His treasury. Our neglect of the fields ripe for the harvest is our condemnation. 16MR 346.4

God is calling upon His people to give to Him of the means that He has entrusted to them, in order that institutions both small and large may be established to glorify His name. By giving of their substance to sustain His work, God's people show in a practical manner that they love Him supremely and their neighbor as themselves. 16MR 347.1

I have a message to bear in regard to the Southern field. We shall have to work this field. Its present condition is a continual rebuke to all who claim to be followers of Christ. The outlook is not pleasant. In some sections of this field the nominal churches have done a good work in gospel ministry and by establishing schools for the people. But as a whole, the field has scarcely been touched. If the words of the gospel commission had been studied and obeyed by our people, the South would have received its proportionate share of ministry. If those who have received light had walked in the light given them, they would have realized that they should cultivate this long-neglected vineyard. 16MR 347.2

Many of the Southern cities have never been worked. Look at the destitution of this field. Consider the ignorance, the poverty, the misery, the distress of many of the people. What do they know in regard to the Bible? They are not acquainted with the Lord Jesus Christ. And yet this field lies at your door! How selfish and inattentive you have been to your neighbors! You have heartlessly passed them by, doing little to relieve their suffering. The condition of this field is a condemnation of our professed Christianity. 16MR 347.3

It is too late now to cling to worldly treasures. Soon, unnecessary houses and lands will be of no benefit to anyone, for the curse of God will rest more and more heavily upon the earth. The call comes, “Sell that ye have, and give alms.” This message should be faithfully borne—urged home to the hearts of the people—that God's own property may be returned to Him in offerings to advance His work in the world. 16MR 348.1

God calls for men who will educate. During the time that has passed into eternity many should have been in the South, laboring together with God by doing personal work and by giving of their means to sustain themselves and other workers in that field. 16MR 348.2

My dear brethren and sisters in Iowa, the Lord is calling upon you to come to your senses. Awake to a realization of your responsibilities. God has given to every man his work. You have a most earnest work to do. You may live lives of usefulness. Learn all that you can, and then be a blessing to others by imparting a knowledge of truth. Let every one do according to his several ability, willingly sharing in the bearing of burdens. 16MR 348.3

Let us in the name of the Lord press perseveringly forward in the race for eternal life. We have a great work to do in enlightening our own souls and in living up to a higher standard. Let us place a proper estimate on the preciousness of a knowledge of the truth. Then we shall have a clearer understanding in regard to God's goodness to us and our obligations to others. While seeking to save the lost, let us keep our minds constantly uplifted in prayer for divine guidance. We are not to look to men, but are to behold Jesus. Let us not lose our spirituality. Christ desires His people to be greatly revived by the Holy Spirit. 16MR 348.4

Although we are now passing through the night of tribulation, we need not be discouraged by the darkness that surrounds us. The Lord desires us to exercise faith, with spiritual vision looking beyond the gloom to the scenes of the morning so soon to dawn. In faith and hope we may confidently say, The morning cometh, when there will be no more night. Soon we shall see the dawn of the eternal day in all its glorious beauty and splendor.—Letter 136, 1902. 16MR 349.1

Ellen G. White Estate

Washington, D. C.,

April, 1987.

Entire Letter.