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    We are Laborers Together

    Sanitarium, Cal.,

    June 13, 1906.

    Dr. C. E. Steward:

    Dear Brother,

    I have received your letter, in which you inquire what is meant by the words “I”, “We,” and so on, in my testimonies. In my work, I am connected with my helpers, and I am also connected and in close touch with my Instructor and other heavenly intelligences. Those who are called of God should be in touch with him through the operation of his Holy Spirit, that they may be taught by him.SpM 462.1

    Of mine own self I can do nothing. I feel that all credit must be given to a higher Power whose will and word I am to carry out, in order that, united with heavenly intelligences, I may have a clear perception of spiritual and eternal things. Christ has said, “The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do; for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.”SpM 462.2

    Again, God's way is to be practiced in every line of work, else the cause of truth, I am instructed, will bear the imperfections of the mold of men, and will be misrepresented. We are to become one with Christ, in harmony with his prayer: “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they all shall be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us; that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou has loved me..... O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee; but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me. And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it; that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them and I in them.”SpM 462.3

    I can not always say “I”! I am not accustomed to doing so. Without the special light and grace of Christ, I can do nothing. Furthermore, I am connected with my workers. During the night season I am often deeply impressed with representations passing before me, and usually, whatever the hour of the night may be, I arise at once, and write out the instruction that has been given me. This manuscript is placed in the hands of one of my copyists, who makes several copies on the typewriter. Then it is returned to me, and I carefully read it over to see if it is all correct. Matter written for publication is sometimes sent direct to one of our periodicals, and sometimes laid aside with other matter to be published later in book form or in some other way.SpM 463.1

    This is one reason why I often say “we”. My helpers and I are co-workers in sending out the light given me to be a blessing to the world.SpM 463.2

    In the first chapter of the first epistle to the Corinthians we read: “Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours: Grace by unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.SpM 463.3

    “I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ; that in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge (this is a very broad statement); even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you: so that ye come behind in no gift, waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ; who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”SpM 463.4

    “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us (notice the use of this word) which are saved it is the power of God. For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and I will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this world? Hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.SpM 463.5

    “For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling-block, and unto the Greeks foolishness; but unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God. Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called; but God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the things which are might; and base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are; that no flesh should glory in his presence.SpM 464.1

    “But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption; that, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.”SpM 464.2

    Read the second chapter of First Corinthians, and notice carefully how Paul uses the words, “I”, “we”, and “us”.SpM 464.3

    In the third chapter we read: “Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man? I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase. Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one; and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labor. For we are laborers together with God; ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building.”SpM 464.4

    Now if I say “we” and “us”, you may understand what I mean; we are laborers together with God. The whole of the third chapter of First Corinthians needs to be carefully studied. Study every verse of this chapter; for it means to you and your associates, as well as to me.SpM 464.5

    “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” Then why should not I say “we” in a peculiar and significant sense? I myself and you yourself must be united in mind, in heart, in soul, in strength, with heavenly agencies. This is our only hope of success. The less that is said of “I”, the more correct will be our understanding of the great I Am.SpM 464.6

    “If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness.”SpM 464.7

    I have been instructed that unless there is a decided changed in the religious experience of those who have refused to heed the warnings given them, but who, instead, remain willingly under the molding influence which now predominates at the Battle Creek Sanitarium, it will not be of the least use to explain everything that is presented as an objection to the visions. Some have been under his influence for years, and the many subterfuges and explanations that are resorted to there, will be taken up by those misled souls and used against the testimonies. So long as they refuse to heed the warnings given them, the spell that is upon them can not be broken. God has a work that must be carried forward purely and intelligently, in his own way, entirely separated from the influence of seducing spirits that some have communion with.SpM 464.8

    I am instructed to say to you, We are now living amid the perils of the last days. I am commissioned to bear my testimony, “Be ye also ready, for in such an hour as ye think not, the Son of man cometh.”SpM 465.1

    Our God has given us, his people, a special work to do. The Son of God was manifest in human flesh, that man might receive knowledge intelligently from the divine-human Teacher. Christ came in the likeness of humanity, that he might draw all men unto himself. His followers must walk in the light of his glorious example.SpM 465.2

    At whatever sacrifice of ease or reputation, at whatever sacrifice of property of cost of labor, a Christian must maintain the reformative doctrine of the gospel. In short, if a man is risen with Christ by profession of faith in the Son of God as his Redeemer, he has made a most solemn pledge to maintain these reformative doctrines. As he advances in the Christian life, he will gladly accept the self-denial and self-sacrifice involved. “Ye are laborers together with God.”SpM 465.3

    Ellen G. White.

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