The Review and Herald

1472/1902

February 21, 1907

Unity of Effort in Warning the Cities

EGW

More and more, as the days go by, it is becoming apparent that God's judgments are in the world. Yet God is not executing his wrath without mercy. His hand is stretched out still. And in this time, when the cities of the nations are being visited with judgments, God's people have a special opportunity to give the last warning message to the inhabitants of these cities. Long have we neglected these centers, and now we must labor earnestly to redeem the time. The people must be shown how it is possible for God, by a touch of his hand, to destroy the property they have gathered against the last great day. RH February 21, 1907, par. 1

In connection with the proclamation of the message in large cities, there are many kinds of work to be done by laborers with varied gifts. Some are to labor in one way, some in another. The Lord desires that the cities shall be worked by the united efforts of laborers of different capabilities. All are to look to Jesus for direction, not depending on man for wisdom, lest they be led astray. RH February 21, 1907, par. 2

The Lord has given to some ministers the ability to gather and hold large congregations. This calls for the exercise of tact and skill. In the cities of today, where there is so much to attract and please, the people can be interested by no ordinary efforts. Ministers of God's appointment will find it necessary to put forth extraordinary efforts in order to arrest the attention of the multitudes. And when they succeed in bringing together a large number of people, they must bear messages of a character so out of the usual order that the people will be aroused and warned. They must make use of every means that can possibly be devised for causing the truth to stand out clearly and distinctly. The testing message for this time is to be borne so plainly and decidedly as to startle the hearers, and lead them to desire to study the Scriptures. RH February 21, 1907, par. 3

Those who do the work of the Lord in the cities must put forth calm, steady, devoted effort for the education of the people. While they are to labor earnestly to interest their hearers and to hold this interest, yet at the same time they must carefully guard themselves against everything that borders on sensationalism. In this age of extravagance and outward show, when men think that it is necessary to make a display in order to gain success, God's chosen messengers are to show the fallacy of expending means needlessly for effect. As they labor with simplicity, humility, and graceful dignity, avoiding everything of a theatrical nature, their work will make a lasting impression for good. RH February 21, 1907, par. 4

There will be necessity, it is true, for expending money judiciously in advertising the meetings, and in carrying forward the work solidly. Yet the strength of every worker will be found to lie not in these outward agencies, but in trustful dependence of God, in earnest prayer to him for help, in obedience to his Word. Much more prayer, much more Christlikeness, much more conformity to God's will, is to be brought into the Lord's work. Outward show, an extravagant outlay of means, will not accomplish the work to be done. RH February 21, 1907, par. 5

God's work is to be carried forward with power. We need the baptism of the Holy Spirit. We need to understand that God will add to the ranks of his people men of ability and influence, who are to act their part in warning the world. All in the world are not lawless and sinful. God has many thousands who have not bowed the knee to Baal. There are God-fearing men and women in the fallen churches. If this were not so, we should not be given the message to bear, “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen.... Come out of her, my people.” Many of the honest in heart are gasping for a breath of life from heaven. They will recognize the gospel when it is brought to them in the beauty and simplicity with which it is presented in God's Word. RH February 21, 1907, par. 6

Of equal importance with special public efforts, is house-to house work in the homes of the people. As the result of the presentation of truth in large congregations, a spirit of inquiry is awakened; and it is specially important that this interest be followed up by personal labor. Those who desire to investigate the truth need to be taught to study diligently the Word of God. Some one must help them to build on a sure foundation. The Word of God is to be their counselor. At this critical time in their religious experience, how important it is that wisely directed Bible workers come to their help, and open to their understanding the treasure-house of God's Word. RH February 21, 1907, par. 7

A well-balanced work can be carried on best when a training-school for Bible workers is in progress while the public meetings are being held. Connected with this training-school, or city mission, should be experienced laborers of deep spiritual understanding who can give the Bible workers daily instruction, and who can also unite whole-heartedly in the general public efforts being put forth. And as men and women are converted to the truth, those standing at the head of the city mission should, with much prayer, show these new converts how to experience the power of the truth in their hearts. This united effort on the part of all the workers would be as a nail driven in a sure place. RH February 21, 1907, par. 8

When personal work is neglected, many precious opportunities are lost, which, were they improved, might advance the work decidedly. In our efforts in behalf of the multitudes dwelling in cities, we must strive to do thorough service. The work in a large center of population is greater than one man can successfully handle. God has different ways of working; and he has workmen to whom he entrusts varied gifts. In a large city, there are certain classes that can not be reached by public meetings. These must be searched out, as the shepherd searches for his lost sheep. Diligent, personal effort must be put forth in their behalf. Let no one feel, when another worker is sent to the place where he is working, that the efforts of one will be counterworked by the efforts of the other. Some will reject the truth as it is presented by one laborer, only to open their hearts to God's truth as it is presented in a different manner by another laborer. A Paul may plant, an Apollos may water, but God gives the increase. RH February 21, 1907, par. 9

The Lord desires his chosen servants to learn how to blend together. A decided influence for good is to be brought to bear on the inhabitants of the world. It may seem to some workers that the contrast between their gifts and the gifts of a fellow laborer is too great to allow them to unite in harmonious effort. But when they remember that there are varied minds to be reached, and that the Lord is their helper, they will labor together in unity. Their talents, however diverse, may all be under the control of the same Spirit. In every word and act, kindness and love will be revealed. And as each worker fills his appointed place faithfully, the prayer of Christ for the unity of his followers will be answered, and the world will know that these are his disciples. RH February 21, 1907, par. 10

A little longer will the voice of mercy be heard; a little longer will be given the gracious invitation, “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.” God sends his warning message to the cities everywhere. Let the messengers whom he sends work so harmoniously that all will take knowledge of them, that they have learned of Jesus. RH February 21, 1907, par. 11