Ellen G. White Writings

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Pastoral Ministry, Page 219

Chapter 38—Former Members, Inactive Members

Wise efforts should be made to prevent straying and to bring back those who have strayed—Here were the cases of several who had backslidden, who had been in darkness, and who had strayed from the fold. But especially was the case of Brother A prominent. All the efforts were not made which should have been made in wisdom to prevent his straying from the fold; and after he had strayed, diligent efforts were not put forth to bring him back. There was more gossiping over his case than sincere sorrow for him. All these things kept him from the fold and caused his heart to be separated farther and farther from his brethren, making his rescue still more difficult. How different was this course from that pursued by the shepherd in the parable, when in pursuit of the lost sheep. The whole ninety and nine were left in the wilderness to care for themselves, exposed to dangers; yet the lone sheep, separated from the flock, was in greater danger, and to secure the one, the ninety and nine were left.—Testimonies for the Church 2:218.

Many who have strayed will come back—When the storm of persecution really breaks upon us, the true sheep will hear the true Shepherd's voice. Self-denying efforts will be put forth to save the lost, and many who have strayed from the fold will come back to follow the great Shepherd. The people of God will draw together, and present to the enemy a united front.—Testimonies for the Church 6:401.

Find Them

Some ministers, surrounded by backsliders, feel no burden for their souls—Some ministers who profess to be called of God have the blood of souls on their garments. They are surrounded with backsliders and sinners, and yet feel no burden for their souls; they manifest an indifference in regard to their salvation. Some are so nearly asleep that they seem to have no sense of the work of a gospel minister. They do not consider that as spiritual physicians they are required to have skill in administering to souls diseased with sin. The work of warning sinners, of weeping over them and pleading with them, has been neglected until many souls are past all cure. Some have

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