The Review and Herald


December 17, 1914

Medical Missionary Work


Medical missionary work is the pioneer work of the gospel, the door through which the truth for this time is to find entrance to many homes. God's people are to be genuine medical missionaries; for they are to learn to minister to the needs of both soul and body. The purest unselfishness is to be shown by our workers as, with the knowledge and experience gained by practical work, they go out to give treatments to the sick. As they go from house to house, they will find access to many hearts. Many will be reached who otherwise never would have heard the gospel message. A demonstration of the principles of health reform will do much toward removing prejudice against our evangelical work. The Great Physician, the originator of medical missionary work, will bless all who thus seek to impart the truth for this time. RH December 17, 1914, par. 1

Physical healing is bound up with the gospel commission. When Christ sent his disciples out on their first missionary journey, he bade them: “As ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.” And when at the close of his earthly ministry he gave them their commission, he said, “These signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils;... they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” RH December 17, 1914, par. 2

Of the disciples after Christ's ascension we read, “They went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following.” Luke is called the “beloved physician.” He labored in connection with Paul in Philippi; and when Paul left that place, Luke stayed, doing double service as a physician and a gospel minister. He was indeed a medical missionary, and his medical skill opened the way for the gospel to reach many hearts. RH December 17, 1914, par. 3

The divine commission needs no reform. Christ's way of presenting truth cannot be improved upon. The Saviour gave the disciples practical lessons, teaching them how to work in such a way as to make souls glad in the truth. He sympathized with the weary, the heavy-laden, the oppressed. He fed the hungry and healed the sick. Constantly he went about doing good. By the good he accomplished, by his loving words and kindly deeds, he interpreted the gospel to men. RH December 17, 1914, par. 4

Brief as was the period of his public ministry, he accomplished the work he came to do. How impressive were the truths he taught! How complete his life work! What spiritual food he daily imparted as he presented the bread of life to thousands of hungry souls! His life was a living ministry of the word. He promised nothing that he did not perform. RH December 17, 1914, par. 5

The words of life were presented in such simplicity that a child could understand them. Men, women, and children were so impressed with his manner of explaining the Scriptures that they would catch the very intonation of his voice, place the same emphasis on their words, and imitate his gestures. Youth caught his spirit of ministry, and sought to pattern after his gracious ways by seeking to assist those whom they saw needing help. RH December 17, 1914, par. 6

Just as we trace the pathway of a stream of water by the line of living green it produces, so Christ could be seen in the deeds of mercy that marked his pathway at every step. Wherever he went, health sprang up, and happiness followed wherever he passed. The blind and deaf rejoiced in his presence. His words to the ignorant opened to them a fountain of life. He dispensed his blessings abundantly and continuously. They were the garnered treasures of eternity, given in Christ, the Lord's rich gift to man. RH December 17, 1914, par. 7

Christ's work in behalf of man is not finished. It continues today. In like manner his ambassadors are to preach the gospel and to reveal his pitying love for lost and perishing souls. By an unselfish interest in those who need help they are to give a practical demonstration of the truth of the gospel. Much more than mere sermonizing is included in this work. The evangelization of the world is the work God has given to those who go forth in his name. They are to be colaborers with Christ, revealing to those ready to perish his tender, pitying love. God calls for thousands to work for him, not by preaching to those who know the truth for this time, but by warning those who have never heard the last message of mercy. Work with a heart filled with an earnest longing for souls. Do medical missionary work. Thus you will gain access to the hearts of people, and the way will be prepared for a more decided proclamation of the truth. RH December 17, 1914, par. 8

Who are laborers together with Christ in this blessed medical missionary work? Who have learned the lessons of the Master, and know how to deal skillfully with souls for whom Christ has died? We need, O so much! physicians for the soul who have been educated in the school of Christ and who can work in Christ's lines. Our work is to gain a knowledge of him who is the way, the truth, and the life. We are to interest the people in subjects that concern the health of the body as well as the health of the soul. Believers have a decided message to bear to prepare the way for the kingdom of God. The great questions of Bible truth are to enter into the very heart of society, to convert and reform men and women, bringing them to see the great need of preparing for the mansions that Christ declared he would prepare for all who love him. When the Holy Spirit shall do its office work, hearts of stone will become hearts of flesh, and Satan will not work through them to counteract the work that Christ came to earth to do. RH December 17, 1914, par. 9

Henceforth medical missionary work is to be carried forward with greater earnestness. Medical mansions should be opened as pioneer agencies for the proclamation of the third angel's message. How great is the need of means to do this line of work! Gospel medical missions cannot be established without financial aid. Every such enterprise calls for our sympathy and for our means, that facilities may be provided to make the work successful. RH December 17, 1914, par. 10

A special work is to be done in places where people are constantly coming and going. Christ labored in Capernaum much of the time because this was a place through which travelers were constantly passing and where many often tarried. RH December 17, 1914, par. 11

Christ sought the people where they were, and placed before them the great truths in regard to his kingdom. As he went from place to place, he blessed and comforted the suffering and healed the sick. This is our work. Small companies are to go forth to do the work to which Christ appointed his disciples. While laboring as evangelists, they can visit the sick, praying with them, and if need be, treating them, not with medicines, but with the remedies provided in nature. RH December 17, 1914, par. 12

There are many places that need gospel medical missionary work, and there small plants should be established. God designs that our sanitariums shall be a means of reaching high and low, rich and poor. They are to be so conducted that by their work attention may be called to the message God has sent to the world. RH December 17, 1914, par. 13

May the Lord increase our faith, and help us to see that he desires us all to become acquainted with his ministry of healing and with the mercy seat. He desires the light of his grace to shine forth from many places. He who understands the necessities of the situation arranges that advantages shall be brought to the workers in various places to enable them more effectually to arouse the attention of the people to the truths that make for deliverance from both physical and spiritual ills. RH December 17, 1914, par. 14

The tender sympathies of our Saviour were aroused for fallen and suffering humanity. If you would be his follower, you must cultivate compassion and sympathy. Indifference to human woes must give place to lively interest in the sufferings of others. The widow, the orphan, the sick and dying, will always need help. Here is an opportunity to proclaim the gospel,—to hold up Jesus, the hope and consolation of all men. When the suffering body has been relieved, the heart is opened, and you can pour in the heavenly balm. If you are looking to Jesus, and drawing from him knowledge and strength and grace, you can impart his consolation to others, because the Comforter is with you. RH December 17, 1914, par. 15

You will meet with much prejudice, a great deal of false zeal and miscalled piety; but in both the home and the foreign field you will find more hearts that God has been preparing for the seed of truth than you imagine, and they will hail with joy the divine message when it is presented to them. RH December 17, 1914, par. 16

Many are suffering from maladies of the soul far more than from diseases of the body, and they will find no relief until they come to Christ, the wellspring of life. The burden of sin, with its unrest and unsatisfied desires, lies at the foundation of a large share of the maladies the sinner suffers. Christ is the mighty Healer of the sin-sick soul. These poor, afflicted ones need to have a clearer knowledge of him whom to know aright is life eternal. They need to be patiently and kindly yet earnestly taught how to throw open the windows of the soul and let the sunlight of God's love come in. Complaints of weariness, loneliness, and dissatisfaction will then cease. Satisfying joys will give vigor to the mind and health and vital energy to the body. RH December 17, 1914, par. 17