Lesson 5 July 22 - 28

The Action Words of Witnessing

Memory Text: (Acts 4:20 KJV) For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.

"Scripture from the NEW KINGS JAMES VERSION" Copyright © 1982: Used by permission

Sabbath Afternoon

(1 Cor 9:24-27 NKJV) Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it. {25} And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown. {26} Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. {27} But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.

Christian Service, p. 23

The gospel commission is the great missionary charter of Christ's kingdom. The disciples were to work earnestly for souls, giving to all the invitation of mercy. They were not to wait for the people to come to them; they were to go to the people with their message.--The Acts of the Apostles, p. 28. {ChS 23.1}

God's messengers are commissioned to take up the very work that Christ did while on this earth. They are to give themselves to every line of ministry that He carried on. With earnestness and sincerity, they are to tell men of the unsearchable riches and the immortal treasure of heaven.-- Testimonies, vol. 9, p. 130. {ChS 23.2}

The commission given to the disciples is given also to us. Today, as then, a crucified and risen Saviour is to be uplifted before those who are without God and without hope in the world. The Lord calls for pastors, teachers, and evangelists. From door to door His servants are to proclaim the message of salvation. To every nation, kindred, tongue, and people the tidings of pardon through Christ are to be carried. Not with tame, lifeless utterances is the message to be given, but with clear, decided, stirring utterances. Hundreds are waiting for the warning to escape for their lives. The world needs to see in Christians an evidence of the power of Christianity. Not merely in a few places, but throughout the world, messages of mercy are needed.-- Gospel Workers, p. 29. {ChS 23.3}

When Jesus ascended to heaven, He committed His work on earth to those who had received the light of the gospel. They were to carry the work forward to completion. He has provided no other agency for the promulgation of His truth. "Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature." "And, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world." This solemn commission reaches us in this age. God leaves with His church the responsibility of receiving or rejecting it.--Historical Sketches, p. 288. (p. 24) {ChS 23.4}



(John 15:26-27 NKJV) "But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me.

{John 15:27} "And you also will bear witness, because you have been with Me from the beginning.

(Acts 18:5 NKJV) When Silas and Timothy had come from Macedonia, Paul was compelled by the Spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus is the Christ.

(Acts 18:9 NKJV) Now the Lord spoke to Paul in the night by a vision, "Do not be afraid, but speak, and do not keep silent;

(Acts 4:20 NKJV) "For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard."

(Acts 14:1 NKJV) Now it happened in Iconium that they went together to the synagogue of the Jews, and so spoke that a great multitude both of the Jews and of the Greeks believed.

(Acts 4:33 NKJV) And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all.

(Acts 1:8 NKJV) "But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth."

(Acts 2:38 NKJV) Then Peter said to them, "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

(Mat 26:69-75 NKJV) Now Peter sat outside in the courtyard. And a servant girl came to him, saying, "You also were with Jesus of Galilee." {70} But he denied it before them all, saying, "I do not know what you are saying." {71} And when he had gone out to the gateway, another girl saw him and said to those who were there, "This fellow also was with Jesus of Nazareth." {72} But again he denied with an oath, "I do not know the Man!" {73} And a little later those who stood by came up and said to Peter, "Surely you also are one of them, for your speech betrays you." {74} Then he began to curse and swear, saying, "I do not know the Man!" Immediately a rooster crowed. {75} And Peter remembered the word of Jesus who had said to him, "Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times." So he went out and wept bitterly.

(Acts 5:32 NKJV) "And we are His witnesses to these things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him."



(Acts 8:1-4 NKJV) Now Saul was consenting to his death. At that time a great persecution arose against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. {2} And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him. {3} As for Saul, he made havoc of the church, entering every house, and dragging off men and women, committing them to prison. {4} Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word.

The Acts of the Apostles, pp. 105 - 106

Now, when the Jews were trying to destroy the infant church, Nicodemus came forward in its defense. No longer cautious and questioning, he encouraged the faith of the disciples and used his wealth in helping to sustain the church at Jerusalem and in advancing the work of the gospel. Those who in other days had paid him reverence, now scorned and persecuted him, and he became poor in this world's goods; yet he faltered not in the defense of his faith. {AA 105.1}

The persecution that came upon the church in Jerusalem resulted in giving a great impetus to the work of the gospel. Success had attended the ministry of the word in that place, and there was danger that the disciples would linger there too long, unmindful of the Saviour's commission to go to all the world. Forgetting that strength to resist evil is best gained by aggressive service, they began to think that they had no work so important as that of shielding the church in Jerusalem from the attacks of the enemy. Instead of educating the new converts to carry the gospel to those who had not heard it, they were in danger of taking a course that would lead all to be satisfied with what had been accomplished. To scatter His representatives abroad, where they could work for others, God permitted persecution to come upon them. Driven from Jerusalem, the believers "went everywhere preaching the word." {AA 105.2}

Among those to whom the Saviour had given the commission, "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations" (Matthew 28:19), were many from the humbler walks of life--men and women who had learned to love their Lord and who had determined to follow His example of unselfish service. (p. 106) To these lowly ones, as well as to the disciples who had been with the Saviour during His earthly ministry, had been given a precious trust. They were to carry to the world the glad tidings of salvation through Christ. {AA 105.3}

When they were scattered by persecution they went forth filled with missionary zeal. They realized the responsibility of their mission. They knew that they held in their hands the bread of life for a famishing world; and they were constrained by the love of Christ to break this bread to all who were in need. The Lord wrought through them. Wherever they went, the sick were healed and the poor had the gospel preached unto them. {AA 106.1}

Philip, one of the seven deacons, was among those driven from Jerusalem. He "went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits . . . came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed. And there was great joy in that city." {AA 106.2}

Christ's message to the Samaritan woman with whom He had talked at Jacob's well had borne fruit. After listening to His words, the woman had gone to the men of the city, saying, "Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ? They went with her, heard Jesus, and believed on Him. Anxious to hear more, they begged Him to remain. For two days He stayed with them, "and many more believed because of His own word." John 4:29, 41. {AA 106.3}

And when His disciples were driven from Jerusalem, (p. 107) some found in Samaria a safe asylum. The Samaritans welcomed these messengers of the gospel, and the Jewish converts gathered a precious harvest from among those who had once been their bitterest enemies. {AA 106.4}

(Acts 20:20 NKJV) "how I kept back nothing that was helpful, but proclaimed it to you, and taught you publicly and from house to house,

(Acts 5:21 NKJV) And when they heard that, they entered the temple early in the morning and taught. But the high priest and those with him came and called the council together, with all the elders of the children of Israel, and sent to the prison to have them brought.

(Acts 5:25 NKJV) So one came and told them, saying, "Look, the men whom you put in prison are standing in the temple and teaching the people!"

(Acts 28:31 NKJV) preaching the kingdom of God and teaching the things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ with all confidence, no one forbidding him.

Gospel Workers, p. 407

Less Preaching, More Teaching At our camp-meetings, one or two laborers should not be required to do all the preaching and all the teaching in Bible lines. At times, greater good can be accomplished by breaking up the large congregation into sections. Thus the educator in Bible truth can come closer to the people than in a large assembly. {GW 407.1}

There is much more preaching than there should be at our camp-meetings. This brings a heavy burden upon the ministers, and as a consequence much that requires attention is neglected. Many little things that open the door to serious evils are passed by unnoticed. The minister is robbed of physical strength, and deprived of the time he needs for meditation and prayer, in order to keep his own soul in the love of God. And when so many discourses are crowded in, one after another, the people have no time to appropriate what they hear. Their minds become confused, and the services seem to them tedious and wearisome. {GW 407.2}

There should be less preaching, and more teaching. There are those who want more definite light than they receive from hearing the sermons. Some need a longer time than do others to understand the points presented. If the truth presented could be made a little plainer, they would see it and take hold of it, and it would be like a nail fastened in a sure place. {GW 407.3}

It has been shown me that our camp-meetings are to increase in interest and success. As we approach the end, I have seen that in these meetings there will (p. 408) be less preaching, and more Bible study. There will be little groups all over the grounds, with their Bibles in their hands, and different ones leading out in a free, conversational study of the Scriptures. {GW 407.4}



(Acts 17:2-3 NKJV) Then Paul, as his custom was, went in to them, and for three Sabbaths reasoned with them from the Scriptures, {3} explaining and demonstrating that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead, and saying, "This Jesus whom I preach to you is the Christ."

Gospel Workers, p. 190

The Shepherd's Work A true shepherd will have an interest in all that relates to the welfare of the flock, feeding, guiding, and defending them. He will carry himself with great wisdom, and will manifest a tender consideration for all, especially for the tempted, the afflicted, and the desponding. "Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many." [MATT. 20:28.] "Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him." [JOHN 13:16.] Christ "made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men." [PHIL. 2:7.] "We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let every one of us please his neighbor for his good to edification. For even Christ pleased not Himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on Me." [ROM. 15:1-3.] {GW 190.1}

Many a laborer fails in his work because he does not come close to those who most need his help. With the Bible in hand, he should seek in a courteous manner to learn the objections which exist in the minds of those who are beginning to inquire, "What is truth?" Carefully and tenderly should he lead and educate them, as pupils in a school. Many have to unlearn theories which they have long believed to be truth.

Gospel Workers, p. 190 (continued)

As they become convinced that they have been in error (p. 191) concerning Bible subjects, they are thrown into perplexity and doubt. They need the tenderest sympathy and the most judicious help; they should be carefully instructed, and should be prayed for and prayed with, watched and guarded with the kindest solicitude. {GW 190.2}

(Acts 2:41 NKJV) Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them.

(Acts 9:36 NKJV) At Joppa there was a certain disciple named Tabitha, which is translated Dorcas. This woman was full of good works and charitable deeds which she did.

(Acts 16:25-34 NKJV) But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. {26} Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone's chains were loosed. {27} And the keeper of the prison, awaking from sleep and seeing the prison doors open, supposing the prisoners had fled, drew his sword and was about to kill himself. {28} But Paul called with a loud voice, saying, "Do yourself no harm, for we are all here." {29} Then he called for a light, ran in, and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. {30} And he brought them out and said, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" {31} So they said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household." {32} Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. {33} And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized. {34} Now when he had brought them into his house, he set food before them; and he rejoiced, having believed in God with all his household.

(Acts 22:16 NKJV) 'And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.'

(Acts 9:17-22 NKJV) And Ananias went his way and entered the house; and laying his hands on him he said, "Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you came, has sent me that you may receive your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit." {18} Immediately there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he received his sight at once; and he arose and was baptized. {19} So when he had received food, he was strengthened. Then Saul spent some days with the disciples at Damascus. {20} Immediately he preached the Christ in the synagogues, that He is the Son of God. {21} Then all who heard were amazed, and said, "Is this not he who destroyed those who called on this name in Jerusalem, and has come here for that purpose, so that he might bring them bound to the chief priests?" {22} But Saul increased all the more in strength, and confounded the Jews who dwelt in Damascus, proving that this Jesus is the Christ.

(Acts 9:29 NKJV) And he spoke boldly in the name of the Lord Jesus and disputed against the Hellenists, but they attempted to kill him.



(Acts 4:2 NKJV) being greatly disturbed that they taught the people and preached in Jesus the resurrection from the dead.

(Acts 13:5 NKJV) And when they arrived in Salamis, they preached the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews. They also had John as their assistant.

(Acts 17:3 NKJV) explaining and demonstrating that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead, and saying, "This Jesus whom I preach to you is the Christ."

(Acts 26:23 NKJV) "that the Christ would suffer, that He would be the first to rise from the dead, and would proclaim light to the Jewish people and to the Gentiles."

(Acts 8:4-8 NKJV) Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word. {5} Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ to them. {6} And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. {7} For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed. {8} And there was great joy in that city.

Evangelism, p. 172

Simple, Forcible Doctrinal Teaching.--A few forcible remarks upon some point of doctrine will fasten it in the mind much more firmly than if such a mass of matter were presented that nothing lies out clear (p. 172) and distinct in the mind of those ignorant of our faith. There should be interspersed with the prophecies practical lessons of the teachings of Christ.--Letter 48, 1886. {Ev 171.3}

God Will Give Fit Words.--What a privilege it is to labor for the conversion of souls! Our calling is high. . . . To fit us to do this work, He will strengthen our mental faculties as verily as He did the mind of Daniel. As we teach those in darkness to understand the truths that have enlightened us, God will teach us to understand these truths still better ourselves. He will give us apt words to speak, communicating to us through the angel standing by our side.-- Manuscript 126, 1902. {Ev 172.1}

Less Controversy-More of Christ.--We need far less controversy, and far more presentation of Christ. Our Redeemer is the center of all our faith and hope. Those who can present His matchless love, and inspire hearts to give Him their best and holiest affections, are doing work that is great and holy.--Colporteur Evangelist, pp. 60, 61. (1902) {Ev 172.2}

The many argumentative sermons preached seldom soften and subdue the soul.--Letter 15, 1892. {Ev 172.3}

Do Not Rail.--Those who advocate the truth can afford to be fair and pleasant. It does not need the human mixing in. It is not for you to use the Holy Spirit of God, but it is for the Holy Spirit to use you. . . . {Ev 172.4}

Be careful that you do not rail once. We want the Holy Spirit of God to be life and voice for us. Our tongue should be as the pen of a ready writer, because the Spirit of God is speaking through the human agent. When you use that twit and fling, you have stirred in some of yourself, and we do not want anything of that mixture.--Manuscript 7, 1894. (p. 173) {Ev 172.5}

(Acts 9:20 NKJV) Immediately he preached the Christ in the synagogues, that He is the Son of God.

(Acts 13:38 NKJV) "Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through this Man is preached to you the forgiveness of sins;

(Acts 2:40 NKJV) And with many other words he testified and exhorted them, saying, "Be saved from this perverse generation."

Gospel Workers, p. 158

Some ministers err in making their sermons wholly argumentative. There are those who listen to the theory of the truth, and are impressed with the evidences brought out; then, if Christ is presented as the Saviour of the world, the seed sown may spring up and bear fruit to the glory of God. But often the cross of Calvary is not presented before the people. Some may be listening to the last sermon they will ever hear, and the golden opportunity, lost, is lost forever. If in connection with the theory of the truth, Christ and His redeeming love had been proclaimed, these might have been won to His side. {GW 158.1}

The Way to Christ More people than we think are longing to find the way to Christ. Those who preach the last message of mercy should bear in mind that Christ is to be exalted as the sinner's refuge. Some ministers think that it is not necessary to preach repentance and faith; they take it for granted that their hearers are acquainted with the gospel, and that matters of a different nature must be presented in order to hold their attention. But many people are sadly ignorant in regard to the plan of salvation; they need more instruction upon this all-important subject than upon any other. {GW 158.2}

Theoretical discourses are essential, that people may see the chain of truth, link after link, uniting in a perfect whole; but no discourse should ever be preached without presenting Christ and Him crucified as the foundation of the gospel. Ministers would (p. 159) reach more hearts if they would dwell more upon practical godliness. Frequently, when efforts are made to present the truth in new fields, the discourses given are largely theoretical. The people are unsettled by what they hear. Many see the force of the truth, and are anxious to place their feet upon a sure foundation. Then is the time, above all others, to urge home upon the conscience the religion of Christ. If the meetings are allowed to close without this practical work, there is great loss. {GW 158.3}

The Desire of Ages, p. 823

But the command, "Go ye into all the world," is not to be lost sight of. We are called upon to lift our eyes to the "regions beyond." Christ tears away the wall of partition, the dividing prejudice of nationality, and teaches a love for all the human family. He lifts men from the narrow circle which their selfishness prescribes; He abolishes all territorial lines and artificial distinctions of society. He makes no difference between neighbors and strangers, friends and enemies. He teaches us to look upon every needy soul as our brother, and the world as our field. {DA 823.1}

When the Saviour said, "Go, . . . teach all nations," He said also, "These signs shall follow them that believe; In My name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover." The promise is as far-reaching as the commission. Not that all the gifts are imparted to each believer. The Spirit divides "to every man severally as He will." 1 Cor. 12:11. But the gifts of the Spirit are promised to every believer according to his need for the Lord's work. The promise is just as strong and trustworthy now as in the days of the apostles. "These signs shall follow them that believe." This is the privilege of God's children, and faith should lay hold on all that it is possible to have as an indorsement of faith. {DA 823.2}

"They shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover." This world is a vast lazar house, but Christ came to heal the sick, to proclaim deliverance to the captives of Satan. He was in Himself health and strength. He imparted His life to the sick, the afflicted, those possessed of demons. He turned away none who came to receive His healing power. He knew that those who petitioned Him for help had brought disease upon themselves; yet He did not refuse to heal them. And when virtue from Christ entered into these poor souls, they were convicted of sin, and many were healed of their spiritual disease, as well as of their physical maladies. The gospel still possesses the same power, and why should we not today witness the same results? {DA 823.3}

Christ feels the woes of every sufferer. When evil spirits rend a human frame, Christ feels the curse. When fever is burning up the life current, He feels the agony. And He is just as willing to heal the sick now as when He was personally on earth. Christ's servants are His (p. 824) representatives, the channels for His working.

The Desire of Ages, p. 823 (continued)

He desires through them to exercise His healing power. {DA 823.4}

(Acts 5:42 NKJV) And daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.

(Acts 15:35 NKJV) Paul and Barnabas also remained in Antioch, teaching and preaching the word of the Lord, with many others also.

(Eph 4:11-12 NKJV) And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, {12} for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,



(Acts 28:23-24 NKJV) So when they had appointed him a day, many came to him at his lodging, to whom he explained and solemnly testified of the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus from both the Law of Moses and the Prophets, from morning till evening. {24} And some were persuaded by the things which were spoken, and some disbelieved.

(Acts 22:16 NKJV) 'And now why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord.'

(Mat 9:9 NKJV) As Jesus passed on from there, He saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax office. And He said to him, "Follow Me." So he arose and followed Him.

(Isa 1:18 NKJV) "Come now, and let us reason together," Says the LORD, "Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool.

(Acts 14:20-22 NKJV) However, when the disciples gathered around him, he rose up and went into the city. And the next day he departed with Barnabas to Derbe. {21} And when they had preached the gospel to that city and made many disciples, they returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch, {22} strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, "We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God."


(Mat 25:31-46 NKJV) "When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. {32} "All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. {33} "And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. {34} "Then the King will say to those on His right hand, 'Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: {35} 'for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; {36} 'I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.'

{Mat 25:37-46} "Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? {38} 'When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? {39} 'Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?' {40} "And the King will answer and say to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.' {41} "Then He will also say to those on the left hand, 'Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: {42} 'for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; {43} 'I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.' {44} "Then they also will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?' {45} "Then He will answer them, saying, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.' {46} "And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."

Christian Service, pp. 15 - 17, 22 - 24 & 94 -98 (not included with lesson help)

The Acts of the Apostles, pp. 25 - 34 (not included with lesson help)

The Desire of Ages, pp. 818 - 828 (not included with lesson help)

Evangelism, pp. 652 - 653

Value of Using Memorandum Book.--If the youth would form habits of regularity and order, they would improve in health, in spirits, in memory, and in disposition. {Ev 652.1}

It is the duty of all to observe strict rules in their habits of life. This is for your own good, dear youth, both physically and morally. When you rise in the morning, take into consideration, as far as possible, the work you must accomplish during the day. If necessary, have a small book in which to jot down the things that need to be done, and set yourself a time in which to do your work.--The Youth's Instructor, Jan. 28, 1897. {Ev 652.2}

Work Not Confined to Certain Hours.--The eight-hour system finds no place in the program of the minister of God. He must hold himself in readiness for service at any hour.--Gospel Workers, p. 451. (1915) {Ev 652.3}

Saviour's Evening Work.--All day He ministered to those who came to Him; in the evening He gave attention to such as through the day must toil to earn a pittance for the support of their families.--Ministry of Healing, p. 18 (1905) {Ev 652.4}

Earnest Labor Helps Answer Prayer.--While we are to pray for God's blessing, we are to second our prayers by most diligent, thorough, earnest labor.-- Manuscript 25, 1895. {Ev 652.5}

Not to Depend on Miracles.--God does not generally work miracles to advance His truth. If the husbandman neglects to cultivate the soil after sowing his (p. 653) seed, God works no miracle to counteract the sure result of neglect. In the harvest he will find his field barren. God works according to great principles which He has presented to the human family, and it is our part to mature wise plans, and set in operation the means whereby God shall bring about certain results. {Ev 652.6}

Those who make no decided effort, but simply wait for the Holy Spirit to compel them to action, will perish in darkness. We would ask those who are waiting for a miracle, What means have been tried which God has placed within your reach? We would ask those who are hoping for some supernatural work to be done, who simply say, "Believe, believe," Have you submitted yourself to the revealed command of God? The Lord has said, "Thou shalt," and, "Thou shalt not." {Ev 653.1}

Let all study the parable of the talents, and realize that to every man God has given his work--to every man He has entrusted his talents, that by exercising his ability, he may increase his efficiency. You are not to sit still, and do nothing in the work of God.-- Review and Herald, Sept. 28, 1897. {Ev 653.2}

Evangelism, pp. 652 - 653 (continued)

Be Not Slothful.--Labor for those who are loitering away their lives, accomplishing only half of what they might for the Master. Strive to arouse them to a sense of their responsibility. Pray for and exhort one another, and so much the more as ye see the day approaching. Let brother say to brother and sister to sister, "Come, my fellow laborer, let us put all earnestness into our work; for the night is at hand, wherein no man can work." Let no one lose minutes by talking when he should be working. {Ev 653.3}

Let the talkative man remember that there are times when he has no right to talk. There are those (p. 654)

who take time to stand still. Let the voice of the faithful sentinel be heard, "Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord." Have you work to do for the Master? Is it building a house in which His work may be carried forward? Close your lips. Make not others idle by tempting them to listen to your talk. The time of many is lost when a man uses his tongue instead of his tools.--Manuscript 42, 1901. {Ev 653.4}

The Desire of Ages, pp. 296 - 297

Jesus reproved His disciples, He warned and cautioned them; but John and his brethren did not leave Him; they chose Jesus, notwithstanding the reproofs. The Saviour did not withdraw from them because of their weakness and errors. They continued to the end to share His trials and to learn the lessons of His life. By beholding Christ, they became transformed in character. {DA 296.1}

The apostles differed widely in habits and disposition. There were the publican, Levi-Matthew, and the fiery zealot Simon, the uncompromising hater of the authority of Rome; the generous, impulsive Peter, and the mean-spirited Judas; Thomas, truehearted, yet timid and fearful, Philip, slow of heart, and inclined to doubt, and the ambitious, outspoken sons of Zebedee, with their brethren. These were brought together, with their different faults, all with inherited and cultivated tendencies to evil; but in and through Christ they were to dwell in the family of God, learning to become one in faith, in doctrine, in spirit. They would have their tests, their grievances, their differences of opinion; but while Christ was abiding in the heart, there could be no dissension. His love would lead to love for one another; the lessons of the Master would lead to the harmonizing of all differences, bringing the disciples into unity, till they would be of one mind and one judgment. Christ is the great center, and they would approach one another just in proportion as they approached the center. {DA 296.2}

When Jesus had ended His instruction to the disciples, He gathered the little band close about Him, and kneeling in the midst of them, and laying His hands upon their heads, He offered a prayer dedicating them to His sacred work. Thus the Lord's disciples were ordained to the gospel ministry. {DA 296.3}

As His representatives among men, Christ does not choose angels who have never fallen, but human beings, men of like passions with those they seek to save. Christ took upon Himself humanity, that He might reach humanity. Divinity needed humanity; for it required both the divine and the human to bring salvation to the world. Divinity needed humanity, that humanity might afford a channel of communication between God and man. So with the servants and messengers of Christ. Man needs a power outside of and beyond himself, to restore him to the likeness of God, and enable him to do the work of God; but this (p. 297) does not make the human agency unessential. Humanity lays hold upon divine power, Christ dwells in the heart by faith; and through co-operation with the divine, the power of man becomes efficient for good. {DA 296.4}

He who called the fisherman of Galilee is still calling men to His service. And He is just as willing to manifest His power through us as through the first disciples. However imperfect and sinful we may be, the Lord holds out to us the offer of partnership with Himself, of apprenticeship to Christ. He invites us to come under the divine instruction, that, uniting with Christ, we may work the works of God. {DA 297.1}

"We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the exceeding greatness of the power may be of God, and not from ourselves." 2 Cor. 4:7, R. V. This is why the preaching of the gospel was committed to erring men rather than to the angels.

The Desire of Ages, pp. 296 - 297 (continued)

It is manifest that the power which works through the weakness of humanity is the power of God; and thus we are encouraged to believe that the power which can help others as weak as ourselves can help us. And those who are themselves "compassed with infirmity" should be able to "have compassion on the ignorant, and on them that are out of the way." Heb. 5:2. Having been in peril themselves, they are acquainted with the dangers and difficulties of the way, and for this reason are called to reach out for others in like peril. There are souls perplexed with doubt, burdened with infirmities, weak in faith, and unable to grasp the Unseen; but a friend whom they can see, coming to them in Christ's stead, can be a connecting link to fasten their trembling faith upon Christ. {DA 297.2}

We are to be laborers together with the heavenly angels in presenting Jesus to the world. With almost impatient eagerness the angels wait for our co-operation; for man must be the channel to communicate with man. And when we give ourselves to Christ in wholehearted devotion, angels rejoice that they may speak through our voices to reveal God's love. {DA 297.3}