Ms 17, 1898

Ms 17, 1898

The Work for Today


February 13, 1898

Portions of this manuscript are published in Ev 565; 2BC 1035; Te 30, 36, 34, 62; GH 09/1898.

Our Lord Jesus Christ was the Majesty of heaven, yet He came to our world as a physician, a healer of physical and spiritual maladies. What was His work? To do good. “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the broken hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” [Luke 4:18, 19.] 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 1

The Lord’s people are mainly made up of the poor of this world, the common people. Not many wise, not many mighty, not many noble are called. God hath chosen the poor of this world. The poor have the gospel preached unto them. The wealthy are called, in one sense; they are invited, but they do not accept the invitation. But in these wicked cities, the Lord has many who are humble and yet trustful. Many of these the ministers of the gospel know nothing about. The churches do not know them, because there are many professors, but few who minister; but they are the Lord’s lights, shining in lowly, miserable places. Patient, meek, gentle, suffering with nakedness, hunger, and cold, they are the Lord’s martyrs. Angels visit them, and bear to heaven the record that the Lord’s capital, entrusted to human agents, is misappropriated, that the church is guilty of squandering the Lord’s means. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 2

It was an insult to God when David numbered Israel. God’s rebuke rested upon him; for he made himself as God, as though he could tell the strength of the armies of Israel by their numbers. “This is the word of the Lord unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts.” [Zechariah 4:6.] God looks not to the numbers of Israel for the success of His work. His armies number thousands of thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. These co-operate with the men who will connect with God to be channels of light. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 3

There are in our cities thousands who have the fear of God before them, who have not bowed the knee to Baal. It is because so many of these are in lowly circumstances that the world does not notice them. But though hidden in highways and hedges, these are seeking God. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 4

It is because of poverty that many are sick, and because of sickness that there is so much poverty. Many in their poverty minister to others. The reward received by these will be proportionate to their willing obedience. Jesus saw how it would be, and He desires His servants to communicate with these suffering ones. The last gospel call is to be sounded, not only in the highways, but in the hedges. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 5

Jesus does not say to the Christian, Strive to shine; but let your light so shine before men, for it is God’s gift, that they may see your good works. Never shut in the light God has given you by mist and darkness caused by ill-advised words, an impatient spirit, murmuring or complaining. Wherever you are, let your light shine in clear rays. Do not hide your light under a bushel. You need not make extra exertions to shine, for light from the throne of God will shine. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 6

The reason for this is given in Isaiah, “Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou the naked that thou cover him, and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh? Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy rearward. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 7

“Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here am I. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity; and if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday; and the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones; and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of waters, whose waters fail not.” [Isaiah 58:6-11.] 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 8

“Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” [Matthew 5:16.] Remove the obstructions, and the Lord’s glory will shine forth. “Ye are the salt of the earth,” Christ said to His disciples. [Verse 13.] If you are salt, the saving properties are in you. You have that virtue of character that has a saving influence. The light that is in you will shine forth, and dispel the darkness. You cannot help shining within the range of your influence. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 9

Christians have a work to do among the lowly, not merely in relieving their physical wants, but by a true profession of faith in Christ, ministering to the wants of the soul. But because of their unbelief, many professed Christians are in danger of losing heaven. By their own withdrawal from divine wisdom, by their own attitude toward God, they have said, I will not have this man to rule over me. And when as probationers we make this decision, it stands in the books of heaven as the decision for eternity. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 10

The last closing invitation is to be proclaimed in the highways and byways. There is a work to be done in our cities. This work, the medical missionary work, is the work that Christ, the Majesty of heaven, came to this earth to do. There is in the world a multitude of degraded human beings, who have, by yielding in their youth to the temptation to use tobacco and alcohol, poisoned the tissues of the human structure, and perverted their reasoning powers, until the result is just as Satan meant it to be. The faculties of thought are clouded. The victims yield to the temptation for alcohol, and they sell what reason they have for a glass of liquor. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 11

See that man bereft of reason. What is he? He is a slave to the will of Satan. The arch apostate imbues him with his own attributes. He is a slave to licentiousness and violence. There is no crime that he will not commit, for he has put into his mouth that which has intoxicated him, and made him, while under its influence, a demon. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 12

Look at our young men. And I write now what causes my heart to ache. They have lost their will power. Their nerves are enfeebled, because their power is exhausted. The ruddy glow of health is not upon their countenances. The healthy sparkle of the eye is gone. Its luster is lost. The wine they have drunk has enfeebled the memory. They are like persons aged in years. The brain is no longer able to produce its rich treasures when required. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 13

The youth who has made a practice of using tobacco has defiled the whole man. The will has no longer the promptness and force which made him trustworthy and of value before he accepted the enemy’s poison. Yet Christ died for him, that through obedience to God’s requirements he might receive from the Lifegiver the health and vital energy that would enable him to acquit himself as a man. His mind need not have decayed. He need not have lost the inspiration that comes from God. But when the human agent works in perfect harmony with the destroyer, enervating the sinews and muscles, the fluids and solids, of the whole human structure, he is dulling the machinery through which the intellect works. He is clouding the windows through which he looks. He sees everything in a perverted light. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 14

Men who use liquor make themselves the slaves of Satan. Satan tempts those who occupy positions of trust on railways, on steamships, those who have charge of the boats or cars laden with people flocking to idolatrous amusement, to indulge perverted appetite, and thus forget God and His laws. He offers tempting bribes to allures them, that by indulging wrong habits and appetites, they may place themselves where he can control their reason, as a workmen handles an instrument. Then he works to destroy the pleasure lovers. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 15

Thus man co-operates with Satan, as his agents, his instruments. They cannot see what they are about. Signals are made incorrectly, and cars collide with each other. Then comes horror, mutilation, and death. This condition of things will become more and more marked. The daily papers will relate many terrible accidents. Yet the saloons will be made just as enticing. Liquor will still be sold to the poor tempted soul who has lost the power to stand up and say, I am a man, but who says by his actions, I have no self-control. I cannot resist temptation. All such have severed their connection with God and are the dupes of Satan’s deception. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 16

The ships sailing on the waters are commanded by men who use strong drink. The clear discernment that is so important to preserve is beclouded; and Satan and his angels manage the barque. The craftsmen who have ought to do with steamers or vessels should be strictly temperate. They should be men who fear God. Especially should this be the case with the commander. He will not then employ men who have been drugged with poisoned liquor, which works its deadly influence upon nerves and brain. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 17

After a season of intemperance, men have no fear of God. They blaspheme His name. They are wholly given to corruption, as is represented by the inhabitants of the old world, whose imagination was evil, and that continually. How can the Lord send His angels to guard the passengers and crew of a vessel that is in charge of such men? We hear of wreck after wreck, of vessels and steamers going to pieces. Intemperance is largely the cause of this. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 18

Satan has come down to the earth to work with great power. He walks about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. How does heaven look upon the liquor saloons? How does God regard the men who put the glass to their neighbor’s lips, destroying the moral image of God? 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 19

Drunkenness, rioting, violence, crime, murder, come as the result of man selling his reason. The numerous holidays increases the evils of intemperance. These holidays are no help to morality or to religion. On them men spend in drink the money that should be used to supply the necessities of their families; and the liquor sellers reap their harvest. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 20

When drink is in, reason is out. This is the hour and power of darkness, when all crime becomes possible, and the whole human machinery is controlled by a power from beneath, when soul and body are brought under the control of passion. And what can stay this passion? What can hinder it? These souls have no certain anchorage. Holidays are leading them on to temptation, for on a holiday many think that it is their privilege, because it is a holiday, to do as they please. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 21

Many voices will be heard, inviting you to wrong. Heed them not. Open the Scriptures, and let God speak to you. The time is now very short; listen to His voice. Prepare to meet thy God. Lay aside every weight, and the sin that doth so easily beset, and run with patience the race set before thee. What I say unto you, I say unto all, Watch. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 22

The time when Babylon is to come into remembrance before God, when He is to give her to drink of the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His wrath, has come. The Lord will come out of His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity, and the earth shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain. Who is on the Lord’s side? Let them take their position, truly, firmly, and wholeheartedly. 13LtMs, Ms 17, 1898, par. 23