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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 17 (1902) - Contents
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    Lt 208a, 1902

    Medical Missionary Workers

    “Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

    April 1902

    Portions of this letter are published in Ev 109.

    To our Medical Missionary Workers,—

    I am instructed to say that our Medical Missionary Workers have neglected many opportunities of doing good to those who need the help that Christ can give them through those who love and believe in Him. The sacredness of the medical missionary work has been destroyed by unchristlike actions and careless speech.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 1

    Some who have not understood how the medical missionary work should be conducted have not felt free to fully accept the work that has been carried forward under that name. They have not given it their sympathy and support. They have become prejudiced against such work. But when they see a harmony between name and action, when the work itself bears witness to its exalted character, many of these men will be led to regard the work with favor. They will recognize the medical missionary work as God’s helping hand to open doors for the proclamation of the gospel.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 2

    The most skilful practitioner cannot be called a medical missionary, unless he calls the attention of his patients to Jesus. The Lord calls for a manifestation of the gospel principles of truth and righteousness.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 3

    Bible truth is elevating and has a restoring influence. It is medicine for soul and body. The revelation of God’s goodness and mercy will renew health and life. It will be as the leaves of the tree of life. Strictly to heed Bible principles will do more than all else in the work of uplifting humanity.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 4

    When we make the Word of God our meat and drink, we shall be able to present it clearly to others. But while the evangelical work is important, the truth is to be forced upon no one. Many do not realize their danger, and if, because of suffering, they are brought within the sphere of our influence as medical missionaries, we must deal wisely with them, watching for the most favorable opportunities to speak to them a word in season.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 5

    Help those for whom you labor to fix their faith and hope upon Christ as a compassionate, loving Saviour. Keep the rich promises of the Word of God before their minds. The compassion and love of Christ are ever to be dwelt upon. Reveal Him as a sin-pardoning Saviour of all who will accept Him by faith. Let the sick find in Christ a Physician. He can be touched with the feelings of their infirmities. He will be the Healer of body and soul.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 6

    Every sick and suffering one should have this point brought plainly and distinctly before him. Show the afflicted that if they reject the Saviour, they lose everything. The Lord Jesus wants to help them. He will receive them if they believe in Him, and if they make straight paths for their feet, following Him in His life of self-denial and cross-bearing.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 7

    Christ is able to give His ministers all the help they need, when they will come to Him in faith, believing in His name, trusting in His strength. All heaven co-operates with every earnest effort put forth to arouse and give life to those who are dead in trespasses and sins. Those who do medical missionary work under the supervision of the Great Physician will establish in others confidence in the presence and efficiency of Jesus Christ.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 8

    Christ is with His faithful workers. He is present at the sickbed, ready to save to the uttermost all who come unto Him. He has promised to be with us always as we teach others of the love of God to our world. He has died that many sons and daughters may be brought to obey God’s commandments.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 9

    The Training of Medical Missionary Workers

    Unless the instructors in medical missionary work understand the principles that should govern this work, they cannot train aright the students that come to them. The students must be taught to climb the ladder of progress round by round, looking constantly to Jesus, the Author and the Finisher of our faith.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 10

    During their course of study, the students should receive training in practical missionary work. Our sanitariums are to work for the regeneration of the whole being. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the power of God unto salvation.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 11

    When the medical missionary work is freed from all selfishness, there will be no need for the managers to urge binding contracts upon those who wish to take up a course of training.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 12

    The grand principles upon which this work was founded are to be made prominent before the students. They should be taught that their wills must be sanctified, and that as laborers together with God, they can work as did Christ when united with His Father.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 13

    Follow Christ’s Methods

    The great Teacher went about Galilee and Judea, teaching in the synagogues and healing all manner of disease among the people. He followed up His work of healing with instruction in spiritual truths.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 14

    Christ’s work was not to tear down, but to build up. His heart of love expressed His compassion for souls. He ever looked on the multitude gathered around Him with a compassion exceeding that which human minds could feel or understand. He was a man of sorrow, acquainted with grief. He was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities. He, the sinless One, bore the chastisement that we deserved. With His stripes we are healed.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 15

    In their association with the Master, the disciples obtained a practical training for missionary work. They saw how He presented truth and how He dealt with the perplexing questions that arose in His ministry. They saw His ministry in healing the sick wherever He went; they heard Him preach the gospel to the poor. In our day, from the record of His life, all must learn His methods of working, if they would be successful medical missionary workers. With Him as our leader, we can conduct the medical missionary work aright.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 16

    The principles of the Word of God are to be followed in our sanitariums. The purpose of these institutions has been revealed by God. Their work is not to be defiled by worldly plans. Christ is to stand at their head. The work of His life is to be copied. His manner of teaching is to be followed. Those who engage in medical missionary work are to let the sick know that Christ is their Rock.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 17

    Christ the Bread of Heaven

    “All that the Father giveth Me,” said Christ, “shall come to Me; and He that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out. For I came down from heaven not to do Mine own will, but the will of Him that sent Me. And this is the Father’s will which hath sent Me, that of all which He hath given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. ...17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 18

    “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me hath everlasting life. I am that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever: and the bread that I will give is My flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us His flesh to eat? Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth My flesh, and drinketh My blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is meat indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He that eateth My flesh, and drinketh My blood, dwelleth in Me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent Me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth Me, even he shall live by Me. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live forever.” [John 6:37-39, 47-58.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 19

    These words were spoken before a large congregation. “These things said He in the synagogue, as He taught at Capernaum. Many therefore of His disciples when they heard this, said, This is a hard saying; who can hear it?” And “from that time many of His disciples went back, and walked no more with Him.” [Verses 59, 60, 66.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 20

    These words of Christ are true today. And many who have not been worked by the Holy Spirit, no more understand their import than did Christ’s disciples. Christ did not utter these words in a careless manner. He well knew that as a result of these statements, many who had been following Him would turn away, complaining, “This is a hard saying; who can hear it?” [Verse 60.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 21

    Christ’s Relation to His Disciples

    Christ’s manner of teaching was unlike that of the rabbis. He did not confine His labors to any one place, neither did He follow rigid rules or methods. His great purpose was to preach to as many as possible the kingdom of God and the preparation that was necessary for entrance to that kingdom.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 22

    It was unusual to see between a teacher and his pupils such close companionship as existed between Christ and His disciples. At all times, in all places, in public and private, as He taught the multitude, by the bedside as He healed the sick, in the mountain resorts, He was closely followed by the twelve who formed an innermost circle and ministered to His necessities. What precious instruction they received! Well would it be for us to study with a teachable contrite heart the sermon on the mount.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 23

    As Christ saw the world’s need, He said, “The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that He would send forth laborers into His harvest.” [Luke 10:2.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 24

    Christ Himself was Lord of the harvest. He might commission a large number to go forth and become laborers. But unless their character was especially fitted, they would be unable to endure the criticisms and the contempt that their Lord had endured from Pharisees, priests, and rulers.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 25

    To the twelve, who for months had been with Him, He gave instructions, and sent them forth on a missionary tour. Not only were the people to be granted another opportunity of hearing the gospel of the kingdom, but the experience of the disciples would be broadened by making an experimental tour.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 26

    Christ did not yet send them forth permanently; for He realized that they were not yet qualified for the work. They needed a more thorough training before they would be fitted to bear the responsibilities that would rest upon them after He had left this world. They must be led step by step to follow His life of self-denial and self-sacrifice. They must become more familiar with His teachings, for they were to be witnesses of what they had seen of His works, and what they had heard from His teaching. To some was to be given the work of writing out in plain, simple language the important incidents of His life on earth and the truths brought out in His discourses.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 27

    He feared lest when He should leave them, they would be as sheep without a shepherd. No one else would give them such kind and tender counsel, no one else knew how to lead them in perilous emergencies. He understood the trials and difficulties that lay before them, the temptation to which they were subject.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 28

    They would be tempted at every step. If their labors were crowned with success, they would be in danger of becoming exalted by the praise of men and of lifting up their souls in self-esteem and self-glorification. They would be tempted to consider themselves able to carry responsibilities for which they were not fitted.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 29

    The disciples had sometimes thought themselves qualified even to advise their Master. They spoke to Him of men who, they thought, would be a credit to them if they were added to their number. There was danger that they would seek to grasp too much in their self-sufficiency, feeling that they must stand as leaders.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 30

    These same dangers beset the disciples of Christ in our day. We need the instruction that Christ gave to His disciples. Some think that they should be placed at the head of some work which has been developed by the hard labor and self-sacrifice of others, as though its success were attributable to them. Christ gave instruction to His disciples regarding these principles. When they came and asked Him, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? Jesus called a little child unto Him and set him in the midst of them.” [Matthew 18:1, 2.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 31

    Turning to His disciples He said, “Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whosoever shall receive one such little child in My name receiveth Me. But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in Me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 32

    “Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh! Wherefore if thy hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee: it is better for thee to enter into the life halt or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into everlasting fire. And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire. Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of My Father which is in heaven. For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost. How think ye? if a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray? And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish.” [Verses 3-14.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 33

    One man’s mind, one man’s judgment is not to be the controlling power in the work of God. Those who have not obtained characters that fit them to unite with the royal family in the courts above are no longer to rule over God’s heritage. Let every one humble himself before God.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 34

    “Thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.” [Isaiah 57:15.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 35

    “What is man that thou art mindful of him, and the son of man, that Thou visitest him?” [Psalm 8:4.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 36

    “Lord, what is man, that Thou takest knowledge of him! or the son of man, that Thou makest account of him! Man is like to vanity: his days are as a shadow that passeth away.” [Psalm 144:3, 4.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 37

    Let not men so exalt themselves as to set their opinions against God’s Word. We are but the workmanship of His hands. God has given to every man the charge to do the work of the Master faithfully, and to give due respect and honor to his fellow laborers.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 38

    It is best for man to understand that he is but finite in the sight of a holy God. He who would have his name written in the books of heaven must surmount difficulties. He must live a pure and holy life, obedient to every commandment of God. He who, while professing to follow the meek and lowly Jesus, is yet full of schemes, whereby he may exalt himself, lives a falsehood. Those actions that tend to personal exaltation are not recorded as righteousness in the books of heaven.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 39

    We should all earnestly pray for the Holy Spirit. Those who are sanctified by God will be men of faith, filled with the Holy Spirit. As a laborer with Jesus Christ, each one will carry forward his appointed work.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 40

    The Spirit of God leads no one to seek for kingly power. God cannot accept the service of one who seeks to exalt himself and thinks it necessary that all his associates be imbued with his mind. God appoints no man to act as a supreme counselor to his fellow men. He who seeks to make other minds subservient to his own is assuming power that belongs to God only.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 41

    There is but one way of entrance to the kingdom of heaven. Every one who gains admittance through the gates of Paradise must humble himself and become as a little child.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 42

    To the humble and contrite ones Christ’s prayer will be answered, “Father, I will that they also ... be with Me where I am; that they may behold My glory.” [John 17:24.] Christ Himself will show them the rich glories of His kingdom. Then shall the righteous shine forth in the kingdom of their Father. Sweeter than any music that ever fell on mortal ear will be the voice of God, saying, Ye are complete in Him.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 43

    Shall we sacrifice a life that measures with the life of God and accept a spurious experience that will close to us the gates of the city of God? We have been given sufficient encouragement to lead us on to success in winning the crown of everlasting life. Shall we by our sinful lives charge God with folly in giving us unnecessary restrictions?17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 44

    I have a message for those professing to know the truth who are not sanctified by it. This is your day of preparation, when you may rid yourself of every unholy ambition. You need to be converted and your life transformed.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 45

    “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God. For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.” [Romans 12:1-3.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 46

    This presents before us a high standard. Will you seek to reach it? or will you join affinity to the world?17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 47

    “If the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches. And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graft in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree; boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee. Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graft in. Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear. For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest He also spare not thee. Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in His goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.” [Romans 11:16-22.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 48

    A great and important work is before us. Now, just now is our opportunity to purify our hearts by belief of the truth as it is in Jesus.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 49

    “Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith He that holdeth the seven stars in His right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks; I know thy labor, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars; and hast borne, and hast patience, and for My name’s sake hast labored, and hast not fainted. Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.” [Revelation 2:1-5.]17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 50

    You have a special work to regain the love of Jesus Christ which has been lost from the heart. Self has swelled to such proportions that Christ has not been manifested in your life. He cannot own you. The church needs to be aroused to realize her moral fall, that she may repent and do the first works, lest her candlestick be removed out of its place.17LtMs, Lt 208a, 1902, par. 51

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