The Review and Herald

1639/1902

April 14, 1910

The Regions Beyond

EGW

As we read reports of missionary labors in distant lands, and study the progress of the cause of present truth in all parts of the world, our hearts are filled with gratitude to God. The Lord is working by his Holy Spirit, and the third angel's message is being received gladly by many, among whom are some who have never before had the privilege of hearing the truths of God's Word. The number of believers is multiplying; churches are being raised up; faithful missionaries are gaining a foothold in many difficult fields. For this advancement we thank God, and take courage. RH April 14, 1910, par. 1

But, as yet, there are many important fields across the seas that have had comparatively little labor. In many lands the proclamation of the advent message has reached but few ears. Earnest, persevering efforts should be made to extend a knowledge of the truth to the millions in the mission fields. Calls are coming in from many lands for meetings to be held in the large cities, where a small number of people have already accepted the truth. Why are there so few missionaries to send to these cities? Sometimes those who have received the truth in the different places are left almost wholly without help when they should be visited often, and faithfully educated to become workers. RH April 14, 1910, par. 2

In some of the fields where, through the blessing of God, our missionaries have met with a measure of success, and have raised up a few churches, serious problems confront those who desire to see the work advance rapidly. Most of the brethren are poor, and as they look at appearances, it seems impossible for them to do much to sustain and extend the work. But let them remember that in the early days of the cause in the United States, similar difficulties had to be met. At first, there were very few who accepted the truth, and nearly all of these were poor. They were obliged to practise the strictest economy; they brought their needs into as close a compass as possible, in order that they might have even a limited amount of their hard-earned means to use in the advancement of the gospel message. Sometimes it seemed that the work must come to a standstill, and that the publication of the message must stop. But after sacrificing to the utmost of their ability, they cried to the Lord, and he heard them. Some one would be raised up to supply the necessity then pressing upon them, and as they moved forward, new strength was given them to advance. RH April 14, 1910, par. 3

It is only by faith, self-denial, and persevering effort that the Lord's work in the earth can be carried forward. The great majority of those who have embraced the truth in foreign fields are poor people, and it seems ordered, in the providence of God, that these should be educated and disciplined to do that which, if they were to look at appearances, would seem impossible. In order to do the work before them, they must strain every nerve and arouse every power. All the mental and financial strength of those who believe the truth must be called into action. If they walk out by faith, as the pioneers in this work were obliged to do in the home field, God will co-operate with their efforts. When they have done all that they can do, and have gained the experience that God desires them to gain in burden-bearing, then he will raise up others to help teach the truth, and also men of means to help carry forward the work. RH April 14, 1910, par. 4

In most fields the work goes hard and slow in the beginning. The time of greatest difficulty is the time for the believers to bend their shoulders to the load, and do all in their power to carry forward the work. Advance they must, although the Red Sea be before them, and impassable mountains on either side. God has been with his people in the past, and has blessed their efforts. They must go forward by faith. “The kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.” The missionary must pray, believe that his prayers are answered, and then work and trust. He should remember that there must be a beginning before there can be great advancement. “First the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear.” The work may start in weakness, and its progress may for a time be slow; yet if it is begun in a healthy manner, there will be a steady and substantial gain. RH April 14, 1910, par. 5

Let our missionaries in new and difficult fields remember that a high standard should be placed before those who have recently accepted the truth. The new converts should be educated to be careful in speech and circumspect in conduct, thus giving evidence of what the truth has accomplished for them, and by their example shedding light upon those in darkness. All who accept the truth are to be lights in the world. When a church is raised up, thorough and faithful instruction should be given to those who have accepted the religion of Christ Jesus. No part of Christian experience and duty should be neglected; and when the laborer goes on into new fields, the believers where he has formerly worked should not be left uncared for, but should still receive proper instruction. Let nothing be done in an incomplete, slipshod manner, but let all the work be done with wisdom and thoroughness. A few thus brought into the truth will in time accomplish more than would a larger number of uneducated, untrained believers, who do not realize their responsibility, and whose unchristlike peculiarities are woven into the religious experience. RH April 14, 1910, par. 6

Those who receive the truth may be poor, but they should not remain ignorant and defective in character, giving a wrong mold to others. When the church fully receives the light, darkness will be dispelled; and if in holiness of character the believers keep pace with the pure and holy doctrines that they have been taught, their light will grow brighter and still brighter, the truth will do its refining work, and the darkness and confusion and the strife of tongues—the curse of so many churches—will not be seen. The power that God will give to his people, if they walk in the light as it shines with increasing clearness upon their pathway, will be constantly received in good works. RH April 14, 1910, par. 7

Our church-members in new fields are to be educated to realize that upon them rests an accountability which extends to the minutest acts of life,—to thought, word, and deed. Before the throne of God each one must meet the record of his whole life. Each one will then be called to account, not only for all he has done, whether good or evil, but also for the good he might have done, yet failed to accomplish because of a lack of consecration to God. RH April 14, 1910, par. 8

In various foreign fields, it will be necessary to establish small printing-offices, from which many publications may be sent out for distribution. These offices will give many young men and young women of promise an opportunity to gain a practical experience that will fit them for usefulness in the Master's service. RH April 14, 1910, par. 9

As the cause of present truth develops in foreign lands, it becomes necessary to establish and maintain training-schools, where the new believers, and especially youth of talent, may be thoroughly prepared to go forth as missionaries. In some fields these schools will also afford to the children of our missionaries the educational privileges of which some are now deprived. We are thankful that already in several places schools have been established, in which young people are being trained to go forth as soldiers of the cross of Christ, warring manfully against the enemies of the truth. We regret that because of limited means these efforts to educate the youth are so circumscribed. RH April 14, 1910, par. 10

Our work in foreign fields must constantly broaden. Our efforts in fields already entered must enlarge. As new fields open for gospel effort, the church must act quickly in sending missionaries to enter these fields. Special efforts must be made, while the angels are holding the four winds. All can now do something. Those who can not be spared from the home field, or who are not fitted to go abroad, can give of their means; and all can pray that the Lord of the harvest shall raise up laborers. Pray, brethren, pray earnestly, that the hearts of some who are doing very little, and of others who have as yet done nothing, may be opened, and that the means which God has entrusted to them may be used wisely in sustaining his cause at home and abroad, to the glory of his name. RH April 14, 1910, par. 11

The Lord is soon to come, and before his advent the message of warning is to be proclaimed to all nations, tongues, and peoples. While God's cause is calling for laborers and means to carry the gospel to lands lying in darkness, what are those doing who are living under the full light of gospel truth? There are some who feel no burden for souls. They profess to believe that the end of all things is at hand, but covetousness has blinded their eyes to the needs of the cause of God. The means that he has placed in their hands to be used to his glory, they are tying up in houses and lands, while the proclamation of the truth that God has entrusted to them to be given to the world, is delayed by a lack of means. Every believer is to do his utmost to advance the cause, and is then in faith to ask God to do what man can not do. RH April 14, 1910, par. 12

My brother, my sister, you can not be a Christian and cherish at the same time a spirit of covetousness. You can not be a Christian and yet not be putting forth effort to win souls to Jesus. When you hear that there are thousands upon thousands who are in the darkness of error and superstition, knowing not the things that are coming upon the earth, how can you enjoy the truth and remain at ease? Do you feel that the little you can do will be so inadequate to the demand that you might as well do nothing? If each one will do what he can, God will bless the effort, and the treasury will be supplied with funds. If you were perishing from cold and hunger, would you call one your friend who refused even to attempt to relieve you? Think of the multitudes in foreign lands who are perishing for want of the bread of life; and remember that Christ identifies his interests with the interests of these needy ones. “Inasmuch,” he says, “as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.” RH April 14, 1910, par. 13

Many of our American brethren have given nobly and willingly for the advancement of the truth in the regions beyond. But in view of the great work yet to be done, those who have given liberally should study how to continue their liberality, and others should now come forward and bear their share of the burden. There is victory before those who are faithful. Our brethren in foreign fields are to labor untiringly. As they become better acquainted with the language of the country in which they are working, their efficiency increases. In many lands, we now have laborers who have learned the language, and who are in a position, with the blessing of heaven, to do a mighty work for God. Let us sustain them heartily with our sympathy, our prayers, and our means. RH April 14, 1910, par. 14

We have no reason for discouragement regarding the work in the regions beyond. Some of the fields to which we were sending means a few years ago, are now entirely self-supporting. The work begun in weakness will be carried on to a glorious termination. The truth will go to all nations, tongues, and peoples, and that speedily. In many dark places of the earth there are faithful believers who have accepted present truth in the face of opposition and ridicule, and often at the expense of worldly prosperity. To the best of their ability, they are trying to help and encourage one another, as members of Christ's body, and to communicate to their friends and neighbors a knowledge of the precious truth that is transforming their own lives. The Day-star has risen in their hearts; the light of the Sun of Righteousness has shone into their minds. Happy people indeed who are thus highly favored! Truly, “it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.” RH April 14, 1910, par. 15