Medical Ministry


Section 7—Fees and Wages

Exorbitant Fees

Traditions and customs have become so interwoven with the belief of the medical profession that physicians need to be taught the very first principles of the way of the Lord. The physician ministers to the body in healing, yet all the work is the Lord's. He must cooperate with the physicians, else there cannot be success. MM 119.1

Please read carefully the fifteenth chapter of Exodus. The Lord gave Moses a message of encouragement for the children of Israel. They did not deserve the good He had done and was doing for them, yet He made a covenant of mercy with them, saying, “If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord thy God, and wilt do that which is right in His sight, and wilt give ear to His commandments, and keep all His statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the Lord that healeth thee.” Read also the seventh, eighth, and twenty-eighth chapters of Deuteronomy. MM 119.2

God's Lesson For Israel

The Lord had a lesson to teach the children of Israel. The waters of Marah were an object lesson, representing the diseases brought upon human beings because of sin. It is no mystery that the inhabitants of the earth are suffering from disease of every stripe and type. It is because they transgress the law of God. Thus did the children of Israel. They broke down the barriers which God in His providence had erected to preserve them from disease, that they might live in health and holiness and so learn obedience in their journeying through the wilderness. They journeyed under the special direction of Christ, who had given Himself as a sacrifice to preserve a people who would ever keep God in their remembrance, notwithstanding Satan's masterly temptations. Enshrouded in the pillar of cloud, it was Christ's desire to keep under His sheltering wing of preservation all who would do His will. MM 119.3

It was not by chance that in their journey the children of Israel came to Marah. Before they left Egypt the Lord began His lessons of instruction, that He might lead them to realize that He was their God, their Deliverer, their Protector. They murmured against Moses and against God, but still the Lord sought to show them that He would relieve all their perplexities if they would look to Him. The evils they met and passed through were part of God's great plan, whereby He desired to prove them. MM 120.1

“When they came to Marah, ... the people murmured against Moses, saying, What shall we drink? And he cried unto the Lord; and the Lord showed him a tree, which when he had cast into the waters, the waters were made sweet: there he made for them a statute and an ordinance, and there he proved them, and said, If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord thy God, and wilt do that which is right in His sight, and wilt give ear to His commandments, and keep all His statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians, for I am the Lord that healeth thee.” Though invisible to human eyes, God was the leader of the Israelites, their mighty Healer. He it was who put into the tree the properties which sweetened the waters. Thus He desired to show them that by His power He could cure the evils of the human heart. MM 120.2

In Christ's Stead

Christ is the Great Physician, not only of the body, but of the soul. He restores man to his God. God permitted His only-begotten Son to be bruised, that healing properties might flow forth from Him to cure all our diseases. Physicians are to act in Christ's stead. Every physician who has planted his feet upon the Rock of Ages draws from the Great Physician his restoring power. Christ's plans are to be carried out more definitely by the Christian physician. MM 120.3

As Christ was about to leave His disciples, those who were to represent Him to the world, He gave them a new commandment. “A new commandment I give unto you,” He said, “That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one for another.” That love they knew not until they saw the suffering and death of Jesus Christ upon the cross of Calvary. The new commandment of love was given in behalf of the weak, the wretched, the helpless. MM 120.4

To the heart of Christ the very presence of trouble was a call for help. The poor, the sick, the desolate, the outcasts, the discouraged, the desponding, found in Him a compassionate Saviour, a Mighty Healer. “A bruised reed shall He not break, and smoking flax shall He not quench, till He send forth judgment unto victory.” Christ identifies His interests with those of suffering humanity, and He tells us that whatever we do to relieve a sufferer, we do for Him.... MM 121.1

There are great lessons to be learned by all who minister for Christ. The Sabbath mark must be placed upon God's commandment-keeping people. The Sabbath, if kept in the spirit of true obedience, will show that all God's commandments are to be practiced, “that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you.” MM 121.2

The Source of the Physician's Skill

The Lord has His eye upon every human being, and He has His plans concerning each one. He would have His commandment-keeping people a distinguished people, who practice the holy precepts specified in His word. He would have the members of the medical profession expel from their practice everything which has been brought in by selfishness, avariciousness, injustice. He has given wisdom and skill to physicians, and He designs that nothing savoring of robbery and injustice shall be practiced by those who make the law of Jehovah the rule of their life. By His own working agencies He has created material which will restore the sick to health. If men would use aright the wisdom God has given them, this world would be a place resembling heaven.... MM 121.3

We all need a far higher, purer, holier trust in God. Every physician should be true and honest. He is not in any case to defraud his patients. If he performs a simple operation, he is to charge a simple price. The charges made by other practicing physicians are not to be his criterion. The diseased bodies over which he works are God's property. He has said, “Ye are not your own; for ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.” MM 121.4

The exorbitant price charged by physicians in this country [Australia], when called upon to attend suffering humanity is robbery, fraud. God gave physicians their wisdom and skill. It is not man who saves life; it is the Great Restorer. But poor men are often charged for services they never received.... MM 122.1

Called To Righteous Judgment

God calls for physicians who will make reforms in the methods of treating the sick. He calls for physicians who will cooperate with Him. He calls for righteous judgment among medical practitioners, who are acting in His stead. The physician who loves his brother as he loves himself will not charge exorbitant prices. A change must take place. It is just as essential that there be reforms in medical lines as in other business lines. There is grave overreaching in the charges made by lawyers and doctors. The Lord views all these things. No tradition, custom, or practice condemned by God must be followed by the believing physician. He is God's servant, working in Christ's stead, as His representative, and his work, his weights and measures, pass in review before God. The commandments of God must be the physician's standard. He must measure his daily life by principles of the law. MM 122.2

The Cleansing of the Temple

Christ rebuked the Pharisees and doctors of the law because of the dishonest practices which they had brought into the temple courts. These men influenced the buyers and sellers to purchase cattle at the lowest prices, and then to sell them for a high price to those coming from a distance, who could not bring their offerings with them and were therefore compelled to buy them in Jerusalem. As these men sat at the table, counting the money they had gained by robbery and extortion, Christ stood before them. His eye flashed with indignation as He saw the fraudulent transactions which were carried on. Picking up a scourge of small cords which had been used to drive cattle to the temple, He drove out those who sold and bought, and overthrew the tables of the money changers and the seats of them that sold doves, saying, “It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.” MM 122.3

Then the Restorer practiced His medical missionary work. “The blind and the lame came to Him in the temple; and He healed them.” MM 123.1

The marketplaces, the merchandise stores, need cleansing. Courts of justice, lawyers’ offices, the medical fraternity, need purifying. Shall we say that the medical missionary work needs cleansing? Christ, who came to our world to reveal the Father's heart of tender compassion, has shown us the methods which Sabbath keepers are to follow in their work. These are plainly specified in the fifty-eighth chapter of Isaiah. God will not be a party to any dishonest transaction. The soul who keeps the Sabbath is stamped with the sign of God's government, and he must not dishonor this sign. By closely examining the word of God, we may know whether we have the King's mark, whether we have been chosen and set apart to honor God. Please read Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and Ezekiel 20:12-20.... MM 123.2

God will never, never allow any man to pass through the pearly gates of the City of God who does not bear the signet of the faithful, His government mark. Every soul who is saved will cherish pure principles, which proceed from the very essence of truth. He must fasten himself by golden links to the everlasting power and love of the God of truth. He must be loyal to the principles of God's word, loyal to the everlasting covenant which is a sign between man and his Maker. MM 123.3

A Conscience Taught of God

Righteousness, high and elevated, is to control the conduct. Strength of mind, learning, power of influence, will not give man his eternal life insurance papers. God weighs the action. Each must form an individual character after the likeness of Christ. He must have a conscience taught of God. He must see behind every promise the All-powerful One, with whom he must work as an agent to do His will. If man will not take this position, he will make shipwreck of faith. God will never insure a man for everlasting life whose anchor is not securely fastened to heaven's unalterable law. He must reveal the Christ working in him, in his doctrinal precepts, in his practical obedience. MM 123.4

The soul that converses with God through the Scriptures, who prays for light and opens the door of his heart to the Saviour, will not have evil imaginings, worldly scheming, or ambitious lust after honor or distinction in any line. He who seeks for the truth as for hidden treasure will find it in God's means of communication with man, His word. David says, “The entrance of Thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.” This does not mean those who are weak in intellect, but those who, whatever their position, have a true sense of their need of conversing with God as did Enoch. The word of God will ennoble the mind and sanctify the human agent, enabling him to become a co-worker with divine agencies. The elevated standard of God's holy law will mean very much to him, as a standard of all his life practice. It will mean holiness, which is wholeness to God. As the human agent presses forward in the path cast up for the ransomed of the Lord to walk in, as he receives Jesus Christ as his personal Saviour, he will feed on the bread of life. The word is spirit and life, and if it is brought into the daily practice it will ennoble the whole nature of man. There will be opened to his soul such a view of the Saviour's love as portrayed by the pen of Inspiration that his heart will be melted into tenderness and contrition. MM 124.1

We are to see and understand the instruction given us by the great apostle, “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby,” in perception, in likeness to the character of Christ. Development of character, growth in knowledge and wisdom, will be the sure result of feeding on the word. MM 124.2

What Would Jesus Do?

We present to all our workers, our ministers and physicians, the necessity of careful consideration in all their work, perfect and entire obedience to the precepts of the word of God. Carefully inquire at every step: How would my Saviour act in this line of work? What impression will I leave upon the people? I am to yoke up with Christ in the work as a restorer of health to the body, the mind, the heart, the soul. How careful should every physician be to represent the Master! ... MM 124.3

New Methods

It is time for the people of God, those who wear the sign of His kingdom, and whose authority is derived from “It is written,” to work. The world is the field of our labor, and we are to strive to give the last message of mercy to the world. Our every action is being watched with jealous eyes. Be on guard as physicians. You can serve the Lord in your position by working with new methods and discarding drugs. MM 125.1

As reformers we are to reform the medical practice by educating toward the light. Our work is to be done in the full recognition of God. We are to practice the strict principles of mercy and justice. Our work is not to be as a garment put together with basting threads. We must imitate God's perfection. “Ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building.” We are to make the foundation of every building thorough and solid, as for eternity.—Manuscript 63, 1899. MM 125.2