Ellen G. White Writings

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Footprints of the Pioneers, Page 7

Chapter 1—So Great a Cloud of Witnesses

Stephen N. Haskell

BILDAD the Shuhite spoke at least one word of wisdom in his rather futile debate with job. “For inquire, I pray thee,” he said, “of the former age, and prepare thyself to the search of their fathers. For we are but of yesterday, and know nothing.” Job 8:8, 9.

The current generation is inclined to believe that it knows everything. So every generation. Very naturally. “The world is so full of a number of things,” remarked Robert Louis Stevenson to his child audience. And as children we throw our net about a little corner of the sea, and the number of things we catch in it are to us the world and all the works therein. But beyond us and behind us are many nets, and many days, and many seas.

Should we inquire of the former days, and ask counsel of our fathers? We Seventh-day Adventists have cultivated in ourselves the attitude of the forward look. At least we see our toes. And we remember Lot’s wife. It has been to many, and it still is to some, a denial of our faith to look behind, to treasure the records of our fathers, to ready a shrine where their feet once trod, to erect a monument at the unmarked burial place of a pioneer. “Forward, march!” are the orders, “Eyes front! Charge!” And the ranks stiffen, and the eyes peer, and the spears level, and we plunge forward into the dust of battle. Beyond is victory, and the Kingdom.

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