Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 12 (1897)


Ms 124, 1897

Go, Preach the Gospel


November 17, 1897 [typed]

This manuscript is published in entirety in RH 03/15/1898, 03/22/1898. +Note

“For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers; all things were created by him and for him; and he is before all things, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church; who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the pre-eminence. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell; and having made peace through the blood of the cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.” [Colossians 1:16-20.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 1

Before leaving His disciples, Christ gave them their commission. Standing but one step from the throne, His last instruction to them was, “Go ye therefore and teach all nations.” “Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and 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 always, even unto the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:18-20.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 2

“Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” [Mark 16:15.] Again and again the words are repeated, that they may not lose their significance. Upon all creatures under heaven, high and low, rich and poor, was the light of heaven to shine in clear strong rays. The disciples were to be co-laborers with Him, their Redeemer, in the work of saving the world. Christ assured them “all power is given unto me in heaven and earth.” [Matthew 28:18.] They were to go forth in His name, and He promised them the ministry of His Spirit. He did not lay before them a plain and easy path. They were to be partakers of His sufferings. But He told them of the legacy they would receive. If they united with each other and with Him, His righteousness would shine upon them, and from them to a world constantly increasing in wickedness. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 3

The disciples were to catch the radiance of the light from the Saviour’s presence, and were to let that light shine upon those walking in the shadow of death. They were commissioned to begin their work in Jerusalem. They were to bear witness to Christ in the city which had been the scene of His greatest humiliation. Here they were to give evidence of their strength and efficiency by lifting Christ up before those that had resisted His mercy and His love. Under the inspiration of satanic agencies, those whom God had made the depositaries of sacred truth had denied and crucified their Messiah. To them the wondrous power of God was to be revealed. But the work of the disciples was not to commence and end in Jerusalem. They were to carry the truth to all nations. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 4

Christ carried the minds of His disciples to an eminence, and showed them the vast confederacy arrayed again Him who came as the light and life of men. He told them that they were to fight not merely against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. He reminded them that they were engaged in a warfare on which eternal results depended. In view of the heavenly universe they were warring against principalities and powers. But they were not left to depend on human wisdom or human facilities. They were to work as seeing Him who is invisible. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 5

In His name the warfare of truth against error was to be carried forward, subverting the strongholds of idolatry and sin. People were to be stirred to carry the truth to all tongues and nations, giving the trumpet a certain sound, and rousing the slumbering nations from spiritual apathy and death. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 6

The disciples were to be His witnesses. Their every action was to fasten attention on His name, as possessing that vital power by which men may be brought into oneness with Him who is the source of all power and efficiency. They were to center their faith in Him who is the fountain of mercies, blessings, and power. They were to present their petitions to the Father in His name, and then their prayers would be answered. They were to baptize in the name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Christ’s name was to be their watchword, their badge of distinction, their bond of union, the authority for their course of action, and the source of their success. Nothing was to be recognized in His kingdom that did not bear His name and superscription. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 7

In order that His disciples might engage in this great work and fulfil their commission, Christ declared that they would have power as God’s peculiar people. “Ye shall have power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you, and ye shall be witnesses unto me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost parts of the earth.” [Acts 1:8.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 8

Christ read the minds of His disciples, and He saw that they were awake to the peculiar dangers that would assail them. He assured them that if they would go forward in faith to fulfil their commission, they would move under the shield of Omnipotence. He made every provision for the success of their mission. He took the responsibility of the work upon Himself. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 9

This was His last instruction to His disciples. He had told them His will concerning their work. He had opened their understanding that they might comprehend the Scriptures. He had plainly assured them that they were to begin their work in Jerusalem, the very hardest field they could enter, and were to preach the remission of sins to all nations. “Ye are witnesses of these things”—His trial, His rejection, His crucifixion, His rising from the dead, and being on earth for forty days. “And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you; but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem until ye be endued with power from on high.” [Luke 24:48, 49.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 10

“And he led them out as far as Bethany, and he lifted up his hands and blessed them. And it came to pass while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven.” [Verses 50, 51.] While the Saviour’s hands were still outstretched in blessing, He was taken from them, and as they stood gazing upward, to catch a last glimpse of their ascending Lord, the sound of the voices of the angels that escorted Him were wafted down to them. “While they looked steadfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by in white apparel; which also said, Ye men of Galilee, Why stand ye gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.” [Acts 1:10, 11.] “And they ... returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God.” [Luke 24:52.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 11

“And when they were come in, they went up into an upper chamber, where abode both Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James. These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication.” [Acts 1:13, 14.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 12

“And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak as the Spirit gave them utterance.” [Acts 2:1-4.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 13

By the power of the Holy Spirit the disciples were fitted to act out the impression that had been left upon their minds by Christ’s words, that they held in trust the most sacred truths ever committed to mortals. The church was fitted for the work of representing Christ. The messengers of God spoke as the Spirit gave them utterance. In accordance with the directions given, they prayed in the name of Jesus. So were the words of Christ fulfilled, “Whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. ... The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance whatsoever I have said unto you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” [John 14:13, 26, 27.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 14

Shortly before His ascension Christ had prayed, “For their sakes I sanctify myself.” [John 17:19.] I have given myself wholly to the work of human redemption. Charged with this exalted office, Christ stood as the head of humanity, the visible representative of an invisible God. “He that hath seen me,” He declared, “hath seen the Father;” and again, “I and my Father are one.” [John 14:9; 10:30.] And having embodied in Himself the love of God, Christ has imparted it to those who believe on His name, that the copies of His character may be multiplied. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 15

“As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I sent them into the world.” [John 17:18.] They are a part of the great firm in the science of salvation, which is to work the works of Christ. “And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also may be sanctified through the truth.” [Verse 19.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 16

To us as well as to the disciples Christ has given the work of carrying the truth to the world. But before engaging in this great and aggressive warfare, upon which eternal results depend, Christ invites all to count the cost. He assures them that if they take hold of the work with undivided hearts, giving themselves as light-bearers to the world, if they will take hold of His strength, they will make peace with Him, and obtain supernatural assistance that will enable them in their weakness to do the deeds of Omnipotence. If they go forward with faith in divinity, they will not fail nor become discouraged, but will have the assurance of infallible success. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 17

The hour came for the lifting up of the Son of God on the cross, and the hour has now come for Him to be lifted up from the earth. Impelled and stimulated by the love of Christ, as God’s people advance in the work marked out for them, they will conquer through faith. By faith they may behold even more than angels in their ranks, for the abundant aid of the General of armies is ready for them in every emergency. He leads them on from victory to victory, proclaiming at every step, “I have overcome the world.” [John 16:33.] Your Leader goeth forth, conquering and to conquer. Never forget that you are fighting the battle of the Lord of hosts, in full view of the invisible world. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 18

“How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace, that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth. ... Break forth into joy, ye waste places of Jerusalem, for the Lord hath comforted his people, he hath redeemed Jerusalem. The Lord hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.” [Isaiah 52:7, 9, 10.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 19

“Incline your ear, and come unto me; hear, and your soul shall live, and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David. Behold, I have given him for a witness to the people, a leader and commander to the people. Behold, thou shalt call a nation that thou knowest not, and nations that knew not thee shall run unto thee, because of the Lord thy God, and for the Holy One of Israel; for he hath glorified thee.” [Isaiah 55:3-5.] 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 20

This work is given to all who have had Christ set forth crucified among them. By the baptism of the Holy Spirit God’s people are to do, through the instrumentality of their Master, the work that Christ did. They are to represent the benevolence of God to our world. Partakers of the divine nature, they are not only to save their own soul, through faith in Jesus, but Christ says of them, Ye are laborers together with God. [1 Corinthians 3:9.] As His witnesses, He has given to each his work. As His representatives they are to bear to the world the message of invitation and mercy. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 21

Christ enjoins upon His disciples to lift up the world’s Redeemer. They are to have a sense of their obligation to devote their entrusted capabilities to the work of winning souls to the gospel of Him who has made so full a sacrifice for the enlightenment and recovery of the world. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 22

The utmost eloquence cannot describe the love of God. So vast was the conception of the divine Teacher of the love of God that the measure could not be expressed. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16.] What scales then can weigh the tremendous guilt of professed believers in Christ, who for the sake of gain give their powers of persuasion to matters earthly and common, losing sight of Christ, losing all knowledge of Him. If we taxed our intellect and spiritual power more to comprehend this love in a fuller sense than we do now, we would put to the tax every capability, every power, to seek and save souls that are perishing out of Christ. Christlike work would be done. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 23

Christ travailed in soul for the salvation of perishing sinners. “As many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” [John 1:12.] He commissioned His disciples to be unceasing in their efforts to save the world. He Himself appointed the Christian ministry and the various means of grace, as channels through which His grace and light and truth might be communicated to every creature that is in need. Abundant provision is in readiness to give spiritual power, and to set the grace of Christ flowing through channels that are cleansed and ready to receive the heavenly gift. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 24

In accepting Christ the individual members of the church take the responsibility of doing the work He has appointed them. By faith they pledge themselves to wear the yoke of Christ and bear His burdens. If they refuse to practice self-denial and fail to place themselves in the channel where the Lord by His Spirit can work through them, they are not registered as Christians in the books of heaven. The more deeply the church feels the need of multiplying channels, the more thoroughly will the riches of the grace of Christ adorn the doctrines of the gospel of salvation. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 25

In every age of the world the gift of the Holy Spirit is the great promise for the church. “Ask and ye shall receive.” [John 16:24.] There are supplies for all. “I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh.” [Joel 2:28.] The promise of the Holy Spirit to accomplish the work is repeated in every soul that is converted to the truth. Every one newly added to the church is to be educated in regard to the work he is to do for the Master in winning souls to Christ. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 26

The Lord requires all who profess to be Christians to be filled with the Holy Spirit, and then to consecrate their means and powers to His work. They will then have a lofty estimate of that which is due the world’s Redeemer. They are to realize that they are to use every jot and tittle of their influence to help each other to appreciate the heavenly endowment. The absence of the means or influence of one whose name is registered in the church books means robbery to God. All are to wear the yoke of Christ and lift His burdens by watching for souls as they that must give account. To every man is given his work; no one is excused. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 27

The promised influence of the Holy Spirit, which molds and fashions the worker, enables him to cooperate with heavenly intelligences. Such a worker will be God’s living, working agency, through whom He can manifest Himself. But those who are not daily converted to the Master’s use dishonor their profession of faith. They dishonor the Holy Spirit, who is appointed to aid God’s people in the great and grand work of watching for souls as they that must give account. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 28

“Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.” [Hebrews 12:2.] The Lord Jesus allied Himself to us that we might appreciate the high privilege of being partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. Satan seeks to pervert Christianity by filling the hearts of church members with his attributes. The law of God is the expressed character of God, but Satan has worked against it, until by a large number of those who claim to open the Word of God to others, the law is declared to be abrogated. But this law is the standard of the character they must attain in order to be among God’s family in the heavenly courts. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 29

The Christian church is to endure the seeing of Him who is invisible. The members of the body of Christ are to reach the highest attainments in mental, physical, and spiritual soundness, because the church is the instrumentality by which Christ enlightens those that sit in darkness. God calls upon His lightbearers to put away all selfishness, all that confuses them, and distracts them from their work. As did Daniel, they are to bring self-culture into their lives. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 30

Look to the source of all strength for perfection of understanding. “All power is given unto me in heaven and earth,” said Christ. [Matthew 28:18.] If God withheld not His only begotten Son, but gave Him up to death that man might be restored to the image of the Creator, how much more will He not, with Him, freely give us all things? 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 31

We may expect that the Holy Spirit will impress the hearts and minds of the workers. He takes the youth with fresh talent, energy, courage, and ready susceptibilities, and brings them into harmony with divine agencies, which give no doubtful precepts, and do not lead those desiring to know the Lord to take one false step. The Lord requires all who enter His service to be consecrated and converted daily, as vessels unto honor. Simplicity will be their true eloquence. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 32

The heart that is under the molding of the Spirit of truth is full of pure, holy sentiments. It possesses the meekness and lowliness of Christ, and a veneration for the pure, the merciful, the upright, who possess sterling integrity combined with the most tender sympathy for humanity. Such a one places true goodness before greatness. He has a mental culture that is in harmony with the character of Christ. Such a man will possess eloquence that is of a superior order. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 33

“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul and with all thy mind and with all thy strength; and thy neighbor as thyself.” [Mark 12:30; Luke 10:27.] Obedience to this command is the mainspring of the highest eloquence. Those who obey these principles practice true godliness. The soul is purified from selfishness and sensuality and from every phase of sin. It chooses those things that are lovely and of good report, and is a vessel unto honor. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 34

There is altogether too little account made of the Holy Spirit’s power to work upon mind and character. Those who reject the Holy Spirit, thinking that the human being can struggle singlehanded with principalities and powers and spiritual wickedness in high places, will find themselves overmatched. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 35

Christ calls upon His church to come into harmony with His character. As in the case of Daniel, in exact proportion as the spiritual character is developed, the intellectual capabilities are increased. He who loves God with all his heart and his neighbor as himself attains this position through the working of the Holy Spirit upon mind and heart. The Lord will qualify him to be a co-laborer with Jesus in the greatest work ever given to mortals. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 36

By the Word coming from God we are instructed to educate, educate, educate young men and young women to understand the living oracles of God. This knowledge will be of the greatest possible value to them as they labor for God. God requires that minds shall not be dwarfed by a connection with the church, but strengthened, elevated, enriched, ennobled, made fit for the most sacred work ever committed to mortals. The Lord will have a well-trained army, ready to be called into action at a word. These will be well-disciplined men and women and youth, who have placed themselves under educating influences that have made them vessels unto honor. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 37

The Holy Spirit is the molding power. “Without me,” said Christ, “ye can do nothing.” [John 15:5.] But let the Holy Spirit take hold of heart and character, and all who will heed its voice will be lights in the world. Experimental Bible religion is a leavening power wherever it is introduced. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 38

The young men and young women who join the church should have a special education in the work they are adapted for. But if one continues to choose a low, common train of conversation, receive him not as a worker. He will do more than can be counteracted to spoil the other workers. Be sure that this class is not chosen to do the work that is so sacred. The words, the spirit, the attitude, determine the scale of usefulness. Let not the work of God be cheapened by those who show that they do not appreciate the elevated character of the work. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 39

The highest interests demand the close attention and energy that is too often given to lower and comparatively insignificant things. Under the molding, educating influence of the greatest Teacher the world has ever known, capabilities and powers will be brought into the church. These are not to be hidden, but are to be used in lines outside of the church to augment the power and efficiency of the church. Those who possess these powers are to proclaim the gospel of Christ to all nations, tongues and people. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 40

Those who are truly converted are born again. “A new heart also will I give thee,” God says. [Ezekiel 36:26.] By God Himself provision is made for every soul that turns to the Lord to receive God’s immediate co-operation. The Holy Spirit becomes his efficiency. Faith in Christ is our only hope of salvation. The work of every true Christian is to set forth Christ and Him crucified. “Ye are the light of the world,” Christ said. [Matthew 5:14.] What constitute God’s people lights in the world? Abiding in Christ. Doing this, they can cooperate with Him in the grand work of winning souls from darkness to light. 12LtMs, Ms 124, 1897, par. 41