A great work must be done all through the world, and let no one conclude that, because the end is near, there is no need of special effort to build up the various institutions as the cause shall demand. You are not to know the day or the hour of the Lord's appearing, for this has not been revealed, and let none speculate on that which has not been given him to understand. Let everyone work upon that which has been placed in his hands, doing the daily duties that God requires.
When the Lord shall bid us make no further effort to build meetinghouses and establish schools, sanitariums, and publishing institutions, it will be time for us to fold our hands and let the Lord close up the work; but now is our opportunity to show our zeal for God and our love for humanity.
We are to be partners in the work of God throughout the world; wherever there are souls to be saved, we are to lend our help, that many sons and daughters may be brought to God. The end is near, and for this reason we are to make the most of every entrusted ability and every agency that shall offer help to the work.
Schools must be established, that the youth may be educated, that those engaged in the work of the ministry may reach higher attainments in the knowledge of the Bible and the sciences. Institutions for the treatment of the sick must be established in foreign lands, and medical missionaries must be raised up who will be self-denying, who will lift the cross, who will be prepared to fill positions of trust and be able to educate others. And besides all this, God calls for home missionaries. The workers for God, in the field or at home, are to be self-denying, bearing the cross, restricting their personal wants, that they may be abundant in good fruits.
A faith that comprehends less than this denies the Christian character. The faith of the gospel is one whose power and grace are of divine authorship. Let us make it manifest that Christ abides in us, by ceasing to expend money on dress, on needless things, when the cause of Christ is crippled for want of means, when debts are left unpaid on our meetinghouses, and the treasury is empty. Do not cultivate a taste for expensive articles of dress or of furniture. Let the work advance as it began, in simple self-denial and faith.
Use your means to create, rather than your influence to diminish, agencies for good. Let no one listen to the suggestion that we can exercise faith and have all our infirmities removed, and that there is therefore no need of institutions for the recovery of health. Faith and works are not dissevered. Since the Lord is soon to come, act decidedly and determinedly to increase the facilities, that a great work may be done in a short time.
Since the Lord is soon coming, it is time to put out our money to the exchangers, time to put every dollar we can spare into the Lord's treasury, that institutions may be established for the education of workers, who shall be instructed as were those in the schools of the prophets. If the Lord comes and finds you doing this work, He will say: "Well done, thou good and faithful servant: . . . enter thou into the joy of thy Lord."
The time has come when no physical, mental, or moral power is to be wasted or misapplied. The Lord desires that His people in America shall no longer confine to a few places at home the great facilities which concern the moral and spiritual advancement of His work. Those to whom He has given much are called upon to impart. Place your means now where it will help in giving light to darkened nations and to the islands of the sea.
Work to Be Done . If families would locate in the dark places of the earth, places where the people are enshrouded in spiritual gloom, and let the light of Christ's life shine out through them, a great work might be accomplished. Let them begin their work in a quiet, unobtrusive way, not drawing on the funds of the conference until the interest becomes so extensive that they cannot manage it without ministerial help.
When institutes and similar meetings are held, let them not be held in connection with our large, established churches. Let them give character to the work and spread the knowledge of the truth in localities where it is little known. This may not be convenient; but I ask, Was it convenient for Christ to leave the royal courts? Was it convenient for Him to leave His honor, His glory, His high command, and humble Himself to become one with us? He did not go to unfallen beings, but to those who needed Him most. His example we, to whom He has entrusted His work, are to copy.
We are to present the word of life to those whom we may judge to be as hopeless subjects as if they were in their graves. Though they may seem to be unwilling to hear or to receive the light of truth, without questioning or wavering we are to do our part.
There is danger in delay. That soul whom you might have found, that soul to whom you might have opened the Scriptures, passes beyond your reach. Satan has prepared some net for his feet, and tomorrow he may be working out the plans of the archenemy of God. Why delay one day? Why not go to work at once?
How the angels must feel as they see the end approaching, and see so many of those entrusted with the last message of mercy huddling together, attending meetings for the sake of benefit to their own souls, and feeling dissatisfied if there is not much preaching, while they have little burden and are doing little for the salvation of others. All who are indeed united to Christ by living faith will be partakers of the divine nature. They will be constantly receiving from Him spiritual life, and they cannot be silent.
Life always shows itself in action. If the heart is living, it will send the lifeblood to every part of the body. Those whose hearts are filled with spiritual life will not need to be urged to reveal it. The divine life will flow forth from them in rich currents of grace. As they pray, as they speak, and as they labor, God is glorified.
The Workers . It is not the most brilliant or the most talented whose work produces the greatest and most lasting results. Who are the most efficient laborers? Those who will respond to the invitation: "Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart."
If men to whom God has entrusted talents of intellect refuse to use these gifts to His glory, after test and trial He will leave them to their own imaginings and will take men who do not appear to be so richly endowed, who have not large self-confidence, and He will make the weak strong because they trust in God to do for them those things which they cannot do for themselves. God will accept the wholehearted service, and will Himself make up the deficiencies.
The Lord Jesus takes those whom He finds will be molded, and uses them for His name's glory, to meet His own spiritual conception. He uses material that others would pass by, and works all who will be worked. Through very simple means a door is opened in heaven, and the simplicity of the human agent is used by God to reveal God to man.
Have you tasted of the powers of the world to come? Have you been eating the flesh and drinking the blood of the Son of God? Then, although ministerial hands may not have been laid upon you in ordination, Christ has laid His hands upon you and has said: "Ye are My witnesses."
Those whom God employs as His instruments may be regarded by some as inefficient; but if they can pray, if in simplicity they can talk the truth because they love it, they may reach the people through the Holy Spirit's power. As they present the truth in simplicity, reading from the word or recalling incidents of experience, the Holy Spirit makes an impression on mind and character. The will becomes subordinate to the will of God; the truth heretofore not understood comes to the heart with living conviction and becomes a spiritual reality.