The Review and Herald

943/1902

July 19, 1898

Go, Preach the Gospel

EGW

“And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” RH July 19, 1898, par. 1

This is a consecrated message, commissioning God's servants to preach the gospel to all nations, tongues, and peoples. Christ gave his life to save sinners. He gave himself as a substitute for the sinful race. He made an offering of himself, that men might be elevated and ennobled by entering into oneness with him. He came to quicken their understanding, that they might discern truth. The truths which God had given had been lost or obscured. Through the lapse of time, they had been removed from their true place in the economy of God. Christ replaced and re-established these principles. He laid out a work before his disciples. They were to preach the word. Not in their own strength were they to do this. Christ came to reveal the truth. “The Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, ... full of grace and truth.” In his power the disciples were to carry forward the work given them. RH July 19, 1898, par. 2

And to those who have the light of truth in this time is the commission given, “Go work today in my vineyard.” All heaven is waiting for men to co-operate with heavenly intelligences by repeating the lessons given by Christ to his disciples when he was with them in humanity. At all times and in all places, we are to work for God. The call is to be given in the highways and hedges, “Come; for all things are now ready.” All who go forth as Christ has directed, with a sense of their responsibility for the souls to be saved, will have an increasing solicitude to win souls to Christ; and they will be blessed in their work. There are many who desire the truth. After hearing the word from God's messengers, they receive it. Through diligent searching, they understand their Bibles as never before. All heaven is full of joy when souls thus hunger and thirst after righteousness, confessing their sins, and receiving remission from Christ. RH July 19, 1898, par. 3

The Pharisees could not understand why the holy Teacher sent from God should eat with publicans and sinners. “Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?” they asked the disciples. In answer to them, Christ spoke words that will live through all time: “Go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” “The Son of man is come to save that which was lost. How think ye? if a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray? And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish.” “I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.” RH July 19, 1898, par. 4

Why did Christ eat with publicans?—Because he knew that at their tables there were sinners to be saved. In all his words he scattered the seeds of truth. This his ambassadors are to do. They are to study how they can reach souls. They are to be found in every place where there are souls in need of a Saviour. RH July 19, 1898, par. 5

In Christ's strength, men may go forward in the great, grand work of imparting his life-giving principles to those who are perishing in their sins. Those who are called and chosen will be co-laborers with Christ. They have a part to act under the greatest Educator the world has ever known. He who is consecrated to God, sanctified by the breath of Christ, is one with Christ. He can communicate to others the instruction he has received. He can tell them that the merits of a crucified and risen Saviour are our hope and crown of rejoicing. RH July 19, 1898, par. 6

Jesus is our surety. “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” Christ, our Passover, has been sacrificed for us. Every drop of blood shed by the Jewish sacrifices pointed to the Lamb of God. All the typical offerings were fulfilled in him. Type met antitype when he died on the cross. He came to make it possible, by the sacrifice of himself, to put away sin. He paid the ransom for our redemption. We are bought with a price; and Christ calls upon us to let him take our sins, and impute to us his righteousness. RH July 19, 1898, par. 7

God is found of those who diligently seek him. His servants are not to be slothful in business. They may understand that it is their privilege to be obedient to all his requirements. They are to be fervent in spirit, serving the Lord. They are not to serve worldly interests. They are not to seek for gold and silver as their god. All their desires are to be directed heavenward. Those who believe the truth are to use their entrusted capital of intellect and wealth in God's service. God has made them his stewards; they are to act in his stead. God has a controversy with those who misapply the capabilities and powers given them. Souls that might have been saved are lost through their unfaithfulness, indolence, and neglect. RH July 19, 1898, par. 8

Think of what may be gained by all who seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness! There is a great work before all who will do this. A field of usefulness is open to him who will do good in this life. The words and works of the one who thus serves God are a savor of life unto life. He may not be able to speak to congregations, but he can lead souls to Jesus. RH July 19, 1898, par. 9

The Lord has more and still more grace and love to give to those who preach the gospel to sinners. A work is to be done in and for the churches. They are not merely to be preached to; they are to be educated to receive Christ as their Saviour. The hearts of the members are to be so softened and humble that they will receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save their souls. RH July 19, 1898, par. 10

Ministry does not consist alone in preaching. Those minister who relieve the sick and suffering, helping the needy, speaking words of comfort to the desponding and those of little faith. Nigh and afar off, souls are weighed down by a sense of guilt. It is not hardship, toil, or poverty that lowers and degrades humanity. It is guilt, wrong-doing. This brings unrest and dissatisfaction. Jesus would have his children minister to sin-sick souls. Those that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak until they become strong. RH July 19, 1898, par. 11

The Lord has debarred no one from ministering to others. “These signs shall follow them that believe,” he declared to his disciples. “In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” RH July 19, 1898, par. 12

Why do we not present our sick and suffering before God in the arms of our faith? Why do we not teach them to believe in the great Healer? Why do we not lay hold of the promises, and bring the sick to God, praying for his healing power to be revealed? Why do we not plead the promise, “These signs shall follow them that believe”? This is the privilege of God's children, and faith should lay hold of all that it is possible to have as an endorsement of faith. RH July 19, 1898, par. 13

Christ's promises are just as fresh and strong and trustworthy now as they were in the days of the apostles. Some have carried the matter of faith-healing to an extreme, and this has greatly hurt the subject. But the need of faith in God should be kept before the church. The realization of our privileges has become almost extinct. Let this part of the commission be brought into our practical life. It is of as much importance as the preaching of the word. RH July 19, 1898, par. 14

These signs shall follow them that believe on Christ as a risen Saviour, who proclaimed, over the rent sepulcher of Joseph, “I am the resurrection, and the life.” But if the workers neglect to link themselves in divine connection with God, the electric current of reviving, life-giving spiritual energy can not flow in full, rich streams to the people. The church needs to be awakened. When Christ was on this earth, trying to reclaim souls, to restore the moral image of God in man by warnings, entreaties, appeals, by a perfect example of obedience to his Father's will, he could not do many mighty works in some of the places he visited, because of their unbelief. This is why we do not now see more of the deep moving of the Spirit of God upon human minds, more of his power manifested in healing the sick. Unbelief is the barrier between us and God. RH July 19, 1898, par. 15

How sad it is that God is disappointed and robbed of his glory because those who minister the word do not realize their privilege, and fail to increase in faith and charity. Bring your sick to God in faith. Humble your hearts before him, confessing your sins. Then pray earnestly, trustingly. You will see the practical working of God's power, and it will be said, “God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; and base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to naught things that are.” RH July 19, 1898, par. 16

Much more of God's light and love and grace should be seen in our churches. Then we should see souls receiving the impress of the image of Christ. Those who keep the love of Christ glowing in the heart will provoke others to good works. A hundredfold will be rendered to God in praise and gratitude, in willing, cheerful obedience. The hearts of God's children will be full of praise and thanksgiving to him who gave his life for the life of the world. RH July 19, 1898, par. 17

Standing within one step of his Father's throne, Christ made the promise, “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” We need more of Christ's wisdom. If we prayed in faith, and took God at his word, he would work for us. But our faith in eternal realities is weak. We have a heavy charge against us in the books of heaven for neglecting to do our utmost for the salvation of those who are nigh and afar off. Every day we are losing our grasp of eternal interests. God will not honor such manifest unbelief. Why do we not lay hold of the promises, presenting them before God in living faith? We must no longer remain indifferent. Let us awake to our duty. Let us not sleep as do others. Let us devote every entrusted power and endowment to the service of God, who has given Jesus to be our righteousness and our efficiency. Let us rely upon him who has promised to help us. RH July 19, 1898, par. 18

Christ came to our world to restore the moral image of God in man. He takes human agents into co-partnership with himself, giving them the breath of his own Spirit, the life of his own life. To all who would obtain a correct view of their duty in regard to their fellow men, Christ gives power to obtain righteousness and to do their work successfully. These breathe the atmosphere that surrounds Christ. They live the true life that he lived in our world. RH July 19, 1898, par. 19

Christ seeks to engage the attention of repentant sinners, that they may read the expression of love in his face, and receive him as their Saviour. He would turn men's minds from every sound that emanates from him who abode not in the truth. He has knowledge to impart,—the absolute necessity of regeneration by the Holy Spirit, who comes to the believing soul under the great seal of solemn assurance. I speak to you, he said; I, who speak not merely as a man,—I, who am the Truth,—I, who am acquainted with heaven, and all the characters that shall be there admitted,—I, who hold the keys of the kingdom of heaven,—I say, “Except a man be born again, he can not see the kingdom of God.” The realization of the absolute necessity of regeneration through the Holy Spirit comes to all who, by patient continuance in well-doing, seek for glory, honor, and immortality. RH July 19, 1898, par. 20

There is majesty in the truth. Those who possess that faith which works by love, and purifies the soul, have a message, plain and decided, to bear to those who know not the truth. They have an important work entrusted to them. They are to live close to the One who has said, “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations.” The messenger who bears the word of life to a perishing world, is bound to speak the truth. The Lord Jesus is by his side, ready to enlarge the narrow confines of human knowledge, that all may see that the teacher is presenting the gift of imperishable wealth to all who will believe on Christ. There is power in Christ to redeem the mental and moral character, and to mold the man after the divine likeness. RH July 19, 1898, par. 21

None who breathe the breath of God, receiving the Holy Spirit from him, can be indifferent in regard to the welfare of others. Their own souls are inspired with the love of Christ, and they use all their powers in the work of presenting Bible principles. Some may tire of the warnings and appeals given them. The workers may receive no response from them. This is discouraging, but it is no more so to us than it was to Christ. There are others who have not realized that they need to behold the Lamb of God. These become interested, and inspired with hope. They believe in the Saviour, and he fills their souls with his grace. How precious to them does the light appear! How different is their attitude from the attitude of the scorner of grace! If scorners see one inquiring, What must I do to be saved? they make light of his convictions, and try by every false method to prevent him from seeking for truth as for hidden treasure. But those who have received Christ understand the meaning of the words, “The entrance of thy words giveth light.” They eat the bread that comes down from heaven; and they are surprised that their companions turn from the truth, which to them is so precious. RH July 19, 1898, par. 22

The great apostle Paul spoke from a heart full of love, because in Ephesus there were souls who had accepted Christ as the Saviour: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: according as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love.... In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.” This is the message that God has commissioned his servants to bear. RH July 19, 1898, par. 23