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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 17 (1902) - Contents
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    Ms 5, 1902

    Diary/The Need of an Awakening

    Oakland, California

    June 21, 1901

    Portions of this manuscript are published in UL 186. +NoteOne or more typed copies of this document contain additional Ellen White handwritten interlineations which may be viewed at the main office of the Ellen G. White Estate.

    Our workers are not branching out as they should in their efforts. Our leading men are not awake to the work that must yet be done.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 1

    A mistake has been made in placing ministers on so many boards and committees, to do the financial planning and to decide questions that should be decided by businessmen. Our ministers should not be called to spend their time in board meetings and council meetings. In doing this class of work they are not advancing the interests of the cause as they would if they were to go out into aggressive warfare.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 2

    There are cases when our ministers are needed at our institutions to help in deciding important questions. A minister can do much for God at a sanitarium. This line of work is not to be neglected. But ministers are not to spend their time in the ordinary routine and debates of business.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 3

    Let our ministers read and study the sixth chapter of John and bring the lessons of this chapter into the daily life practice. Let them devote themselves to the work to which in a most solemn manner they have been set apart.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 4

    We have neglected spiritual things for common things, and God is displeased. The work in our cities has been strangely neglected. Much more could be done to arouse the attention of the people of San Francisco and Oakland. There should be more than one vegetarian restaurant in San Francisco, and such restaurants should be established in Oakland also.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 5

    We are not half awake to what might be done in our world. The work moves slowly because the truth has not yet taken full possession of the men engaged in the ministry. Our ministers need to arouse and set in operation lines of work that will give the warning message to those who have never heard the truth. Let them plan and study as to the best way of removing prejudice and reaching the hearts of the people. Their tame, spiritless prayers need to be changed to petitions of intense earnestness.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 6

    The Lord is soon to come. The angels are holding the four winds, that God’s people may do their long-neglected work.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 7


    November 2, 1901

    Youth who have no religious experience should not be accepted as canvassers for our books, because they cannot properly represent the precious truth to be presented. To send such youth into the canvassing field is unjust to them and to the Lord’s work. This is a sacred work, and those who enter it should be able to bear witness for Christ.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 8

    Let Christian youth be selected to handle the books containing present truth. The youth who go into this work should be connected with those older in experience, who, if they are devoted to God, can be a great blessing to them, teaching them in the things of God and showing them how best to work for Him. If the youth will work out their own salvation with fear and trembling, they will know that God is working with them, to will and to do of His good pleasure.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 9


    A mistake has been made in setting young men and young women to work in the slums of our great cities. Few will be saved as a result of this work. The Lord desires to see an altogether different condition of things. Much of the time and means put forth for those who through self-indulgence have fallen to the lowest depths of evil has been thrown away. Those who have given themselves wholly to evil, whose lives have been spent in intemperance, could not represent Christ.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 10

    Present truth has almost lost its power because of the way in which it has been handled. Had the money and talent spent in trying to reach the lower classes been spent in taking the truth to the higher classes, many would have been added to the church of such as should be saved. The Lord has shown me that our work is to bring into the truth those who will be producers as well as consumers. God desires His servants to labor for those men and women who are a blessing, not a curse, to the world. There are men of talent and influence who are longing for something they have not yet received. If converted, they would exert a powerful influence for the truth.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 11

    Christ said, “Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest. And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal; that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together. And herein is that saying true, One soweth, and another reapeth. I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labor; other men labored, and ye are entered into their labors.” [John 4:35-38.] He knew that when the Holy Spirit should be poured out on the disciples, the harvest of his seed-sowing would be reaped. Thousands would be converted in a day.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 12

    To us, as surely as to the disciples of that time, Christ speaks these words. Time is passing, and the Lord calls upon the workers in all lines of His work to lift up their eyes and behold the fields all ripe for the harvest.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 13

    God has men whom He will call into His service, men who will not carry forward the work in the lifeless way in which it has been carried forward in the past. There are many who have not heard the message of truth to be given to the world, who have learned the meaning of self-denial and self-sacrifice. Men will come into the truth who will work with earnestness and zeal, tact and understanding. These zealous workers are not to be looked upon as cranks. In some things they will make mistakes and will need to be corrected and instructed. But men who have been longer in the truth made mistakes and needed correction and instruction. When they made mistakes, the Lord did not cast them off, but healed them and strengthened them, presenting them with His banner to hold aloft.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 14

    God selects His messengers and gives them His message; and He says, “Forbid them not.” [Mark 9:39.] New methods must be introduced. God’s people must awaken to the necessity of the time in which they are living and call earnestly for men who will receive the truth and become workers together with God.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 15

    When I think of the cities in which so little work has been done, in which there are so many thousands to be warned of the soon coming of the Saviour, I feel an intensity of desire to see men and women going forth to the work in the power of the Spirit, filled with Christ’s love for perishing souls.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 16

    October 27, 1902

    My mind is deeply stirred. There is work to be done in every city. Workers are to go into our large cities and hold camp-meetings. In these meetings the very best talent is to be used, that the truth may be proclaimed with power. Men of varied talents are to be brought in. One man has not all the gifts required for the work. Several workers are needed to make a camp-meeting successful. No one man should feel it his prerogative to do all the important work.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 17

    There is need of camp-meetings like those held in the early stages of the work—camp-meetings separate from the business work of the conference. At a camp-meeting the workers should be free to put forth efforts for those who attend from outside.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 18

    A camp-meeting should be held in New York in a location favorable for the work of such a meeting, not in the midst of the noise and bustle of the city.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 19

    At our camp-meetings there should be a restaurant where the poor can obtain wholesome, well-prepared food as cheaply as possible. There should also be another restaurant in which food is specially prepared for the education of outsiders, where they may see a representation of health-reform diet.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 20

    This line of work is not to be looked upon as separate and distinct from other lines of camp-meeting work. Each line of God’s work is closely related with every other line. And while the different lines are distinct, they are to advance in perfect harmony.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 21

    Each worker, while preserving his individuality, is to labor in harmony with every other worker. Each is to be connected with the other in bonds of Christian fellowship, and all are to be connected with the Lord. The aim of every one is to be the advancement of the cause of truth. Each is to seek earnestly for the impartation of the Holy Spirit. Each is to look to Jesus, believing that He will receive the blessings he needs in order to be a help and strength to the whole work. Each may receive his supply of light from the Source of light. “Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart; wait, I say, on the Lord.” [Psalm 27:14.]17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 22

    All are to do their best, according to their several ability. All are to keep looking to their Leader, studying the lessons He has given in His guidance of His people from the beginning. The experiences of Abraham, of Moses, of Daniel contain valuable lessons for us at this time.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 23

    Those whom God chooses as His workers are not always talented <as the world estimates the matter>. Sometimes He selects unlearned men. These workers have a special work to do. They reach a class to which no one else could obtain access. Those who labor in a quiet way will be rewarded with the same commendation as those who, judged by appearance, exerted a wider influence. Every worker is rewarded according to the spirit that prompted him to action.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 24

    These workers who open their hearts to receive the truth are made wise in and through Christ. Their lives exhale the fragrance of godliness. Their words are thoughtfully considered before they are spoken. Their actions are patterned after the actions of their Leader. Looking unto Jesus in their success, they strive to promote the well-being of their fellow men. They take relief and happiness to the sorrowful and distressed. They feel the necessity of much study of the Word and prayer, and of remaining constantly under Christ’s training, that they may work in accordance with the will of God. They study how they can best imitate the cross-bearing and self-denial of their Saviour. They are God’s witnesses, following His example of compassion and love, and ascribing all the glory to Him whom they love and serve.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 25

    Constantly they are learning of the Great Teacher and reaching higher degrees of perfection, yet all the time feeling a sense of their weakness and inferiority. They are drawn upward by the strong, loving admiration they have for the beauty of Christ’s character. They practice His virtues, for His life is assimilated to theirs. Ever they move onward and upward, a blessing to the world and an honor to their Redeemer. Christ says of them, “Blessed are the meek; for they shall inherit the earth.” [Matthew 5:5.]17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 26

    Such workers are to be encouraged. Their work is done, not to be seen of men, but to glorify God. And it will bear His inspection. The Lord brings these workers into connection with those of more marked ability to fill up the gaps they leave. He is well pleased when they are recognized and appreciated, for they are links in his chain of service. And it is God’s desire that every human instrumentality who works for Him shall be recognized, however small may be the work he does.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 27

    Men who are self-important, who are filled with the thought of their own superior abilities, overlook these humble, contrite workers, but not for one moment does God lose sight of them. He marks all that they do to help those in need of help. In the heavenly courts, when the redeemed are gathered home, this class will stand nearest the Son of God. They will shine brightly in the courts of the Lord, honored by Him because they have felt it an honor to minister to those for whom Christ gave His life.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 28

    We are living in solemn times. The world is to be warned. Workers are needed. The money God has entrusted to men of the world is needed. The truth is to be taken to these men, that they may see the duty the Lord has placed on them. Those belonging to the class called “monied men” have been neglected. But God says, “Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.” [Luke 14:23.]17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 29

    Christ said to Nicodemus, “Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth; so is every one that is born of the Spirit. ... God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. ... And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:7, 8, 14-16.] Well may the apostle say, “Ye are not your own; for ye are bought with a price.” [1 Corinthians 6:19, 20.]17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 30

    Do those who present the truth to the people fasten the faith of their hearers to Christ? Do they make the Saviour the most prominent figure? He whose faith is not firmly fastened to Christ is far from being what God desires him to be. He whose faith centers in any human being is converted to the man, not to Christ. He needs a re-conversion.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 31

    Those who receive the truth must be taught to communicate it to others. As they take up this work in earnestness and sincerity, asking the Lord to give them tact and skill, they will be enabled to reach hearts. The transforming power of Christ’s grace molds the one who yields himself to the Saviour. Imbued with the Spirit of the Redeemer, he is ready to deny self, ready to take up the cross, ready to make any sacrifice in the service of the Master. No longer can he be indifferent to the souls perishing around him. He is lifted above self-serving. He has been created anew in Christ Jesus, and self-serving has no part in his life. His eye is single to the glory of God. The truly converted soul realizes that every part of his being belongs to Christ, who has redeemed him from the slavery of sin; that every moment of his future has been bought with the precious life-blood of God’s only begotten Son.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 32

    God opens ways whereby such ones can work for Him. Let them look ever to Him, that they may know what He wants them to do. Let them do what they can; even though it be little, it may result in great good.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 33

    How many have a sufficient understanding of the plan of redemption to appreciate the value of human beings? How many have so deep an appreciation of the sacrifice made on Calvary that they are willing to make all their every other interest subordinate to the work of saving souls? Why is it that blood-bought souls have not a deeper sense of their obligation to serve Him to whom they belong?17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 34

    Our question is to be, How can I best glorify Him whose I am by creation and by redemption? With anxious solicitude the truly converted soul seeks to rescue those who are still in Satan’s power. The saving of souls is the one aim and object of his life. He refuses to do anything that would hinder him in this work. If he has children, he realizes that his work must begin in his own family. The souls of his children are exceedingly precious to him. Remembering that they are the younger members of the Lord’s family, he strives with all his power to place them where they will stand on the Lord’s side. He has pledged himself to serve, honor, and obey Christ, and he puts forth patient, untiring effort to train his children so that they will never be hostile to the Saviour.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 35

    God has placed on fathers and mothers the responsibility of saving their children from the power of the enemy. This is their work, a work that they should on no account neglect. Those who have a living connection with Christ will work for their children. They will not rest until they see them safely in the fold. They will make this the burden of their lives.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 36

    Parents, why do you neglect the work waiting for you in your own family? The home is your field of missionary effort. The most important work you can do is to place your children in their early years on the Lord’s side. Deal tenderly but always decidedly with them when they err. Take them with you into the work of opposing the evil by which Satan seeks to destroy the souls and bodies of human beings. As you take them with you into the service of the Lord, what a victory you gain! Share with them the secret of the cross, the secret that to you means sanctification, redemption, and eternal victory.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 37

    Let your light shine in your home and in your neighborhood. If the families around you are opposed to the truth, strive to lead them to yield to the claims of Christ. Work wisely, patiently and considerately, winning your way by the tender ministry of love. Thus the walls of prejudice will be broken down. Present the truth in such a way that it will be seen in all its beauty, exerting an influence that cannot be resisted.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 38

    If this work were faithfully done, if fathers and mothers would work for the members of their own families, and then with the help of their children for those around them, uplifting Christ by a godly life, thousands of souls would be saved. When God’s people are truly converted, when they realize the obligation resting on them to work for those within their reach, when they leave no means untried to rescue sinners from the power of the enemy, in their very neighborhoods the reproach will be removed from our churches.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 39

    The Lord has presented before me the work that must be done in our cities. There are in these cities believers who can work for God in the neighborhood round their homes. They are to work quietly and in humility, carrying with them wherever they go the atmosphere of heaven. If they keep self out of sight, pointing always to Christ, the power of their influence will be felt on the side of truth.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 40

    The Lord calls for self-sacrificing workers who will labor quietly and unobtrusively, living so close to the Lord that they continually receive grace to impart.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 41

    Let not church members wait for a verbal command to enter God’s service. They know their duty. Let them do it in a quiet, humble way. There are hundreds who should be at work, who need only to be encouraged to make a beginning.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 42

    Every new-found power is to be held as a precious trust for use in God’s service. Remember that it was your sins that made the cross necessary. When you accepted Christ as your personal Saviour, you pledged yourself to unite with Him in bearing the cross. You are to unite with Him in carrying out the great plan of redemption. For life and for death you are bound up with the Saviour. You are part of His great scheme of mercy and love. Your knowledge and wisdom will increase as you seek to grasp the great science of salvation. Before the inhabitants of the unfallen worlds and before fallen human beings you are to live the life of Christ, that unbelievers may be constrained to acknowledge, “He has been with Christ, and has learned of Him.” [See Acts 4:13.] The purity of your language and the unselfishness of your actions are to bear witness to the power of Christ’s grace.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 43

    Those who truly follow the Lord have no desire to live for self. They delight to consecrate all they have and are to His service. The same intensity of desire for the salvation of souls that marked the life of the Saviour, marks the life of His true follower. He is filled with an inexpressible desire to win souls to Christ. Those who feel nothing of this desire might better begin to feel concerned for their own soul’s salvation. Let them wrestle with God in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth for the spirit of labor.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 44

    Refuse to admit the worldly interests that strive for <the supremacy> in your life. Regard yourself as pledged to Christ’s service for time and for eternity. Enter into no business that will make you indifferent to His claims. Say to those who seek to draw you from His work: “I am not my own; Jesus has bought me. I belong to Him. Every particle of my influence is to be used to magnify the principles of His law. God is mine, and I am His, united to Him by a perpetual covenant of service. Every part of my being, every talent, every faculty belongs to Him. I must devote myself wholly to the service of the Lord God of hosts. He has put it out of my power to give anything that is not already His. If I had more than one, I would give it to Him; for it would be His. My children belong to God. From their birth I must do all in my power to train them for Him, that He may be glorified in their lives.”17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 45

    As the human agent gives himself unreservedly to the work of the Lord, he gains an experience that enables him to work more and more successfully for his Master. The influence that drew him to Christ helps him to draw others to Christ. He may never have laid upon him the work of a public speaker, but he is none the less a minister for God, and his work testifies that he is born of God.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 46

    If any work is more precious than another, it is the work of soul-saving. Why do not believers feel a deeper, more earnest concern for those who are out of Christ? Why do not two or three meet together and plead with God for the salvation of some special one, and still another? In our churches let companies be formed for service. There are to be no idlers in the Lord’s vineyard. Let different ones combine to hunt and fish for souls, gathering precious souls from the rubbish of the world into the saving purity of Christ’s love.17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 47

    The formation of small companies as a basis of Christian effort is a plan that has been presented before me by One who cannot err. If there are a large number in the church, let the members be formed into small companies to work, not <alone> for the church members, but for unbelievers. If in one place there are only two or three who know the truth, let them form themselves into a band of workers. Let them keep their bond of union unbroken, pressing together in love and unity, encouraging one another to advance, each gaining encouragement and strength from the assistance of the other. Let them exercise Christ’s forbearance and patience, speaking no hasty words, but using their talent of speech to build up one another in the most holy faith. Let them labor in Christlike love for those who are outside of the fold, forgetting self in the endeavor to help others. As they work and pray in Christ’s name, their numbers will increase; for the Saviour declares, “I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.” [Matthew 18:19.]17LtMs, Ms 5, 1902, par. 48

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