I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shewed you, and have taught you publickly, and from house to house. Acts 20:20
Among the members of our churches there should be more house-to-house labor in giving Bible readings and distributing literature. . . . As we sow beside all waters we shall realize that “he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.”
Christ’s example must be followed by those who claim to be His children. Relieve the physical necessities of your fellow men, and their gratitude will break down the barriers and enable you to reach their hearts. . . . Women as well as men can engage in the work. . . . They can do in families a work that men cannot do, a work that reaches the inner life. They can come close to the hearts of those whom men cannot reach. Their work is needed. Discreet and humble women can do a good work in explaining the truth to the people in their homes. The word of God thus explained will do its leavening work, and . . . whole families will be converted. . . .
In the home circle, at your neighbor’s fireside, at the bedside of the sick, in a quiet way you may read the Scriptures and speak a word for Jesus and the truth. Precious seed may thus be sown that will spring up and bring forth fruit. . . .
There is missionary work to be done in many unpromising places. The missionary spirit needs to take hold of our souls, inspiring us to reach classes for whom we had not planned to labor and in ways and places that we had no idea of working. The Lord has His plan for the sowing of the gospel seed. In sowing according to His will, we shall so multiply the seed that His word may reach thousands who have never heard the truth.
Thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand angels are waiting to co-operate with members of our churches in communicating the light that God has generously given, that a people may be prepared for the coming of Christ.
Our sisters, the youth, the middle-aged, and those of advanced years, may act a part in the closing work for this time; and in doing this as they have opportunity, they will obtain an experience of the highest value to themselves. In forgetfulness of self, they will grow in grace.
Maranatha p. 104
—–D and M are continuing to need your prayers. L
My grandfather, Ed Harmon, spent much of his growing-up years living the life of a hobo traveling up and down the eastcoast of the USA by “riding the rails” in a boxcar. He met many interesting characters along the way. Some of these homeless men were very nice to him, shared their food with him, and taught him ways of survival. He grew up tough and wiry but kept his tender heart.
The years passed by and my grandfather grew up and worked for a time at the Review and Herald Publishing Company as a bookbinder. He met and fell in love with a beautiful young lady named Rose Mudderspach. Sadly, Rose died of tuberculosis which was rampant in those far off days. Brokenhearted, he left his job at the Review and wandered around for awhile trying to heal from his broken heart.
Since he had grown up riding the rails as a hobo, he went back to that way of life. Times had changed, however. The railroad companies had tried in vain for years to stop these hobos from hopping into the boxcars. Now they had a different strategy. They hired men to catch all who were riding for free.
One particular security guard had quite a reputation because of his size and the hard look in his face. All of the men who rode the rails were afraid of him and warned my grandfather. As they would tell one another about this man, the stories grew and grew until he became something of a legend.
When my grandfather heard all of the stories about the mean security guard, he hoped that he would never meet him. He had faced many dangers throughout his life and was well able to take care of himself, but those exaggerated stories of this man’s cruelty filled him with fear.
One day, he decided to catch a ride on the particular train line where this security guard worked. He would have to be extra careful not to get caught. Sneaking into the railway yard, he grabbed the ladder that was at the end of a boxcar as the train went slowly by.
The now infamous security guard saw him. My grandfather held onto the ladder for a few moments before climbing up onto the boxcar. Just as his head was peeking over the top, he saw the dreaded guard coming his way. Immediately he ducked down, hoping that he had not been seen. In the few moments he had before the guard got to him, he had a decision to make. The train was going too fast for him to jump off without being hurt. He had to face the strong man. What should he do?
Climbing up the ladder when he was sure the guard was right above him, he sprung up onto the top of the boxcar right in front of the guard. Looking his meanest, he faced this huge strongman. The guard’s menacing look made the hair on Ed’s neck stand up, but he did not let the fear that he felt show.
The guard declared that he was going to throw him off the train which by then had picked up even more speed.Without a moment’s hesitation, my grandfather did the old trick of sticking his hand in his pocket in such a way that it looked like a gun and told the man that he was going to put an end to the guard once and for all.
Suddenly, that big guard’s attitude changed. He showed that he was a coward at heart. Even though that guard had not seen a gun, he was afraid at the mere mention of the word. The frightening look on his face turned to one of fear. His whole demeanor changed. Slowly. He backed away and left my grandfather alone for the rest of the trip.
Ed was greatly relieved but could not relax. He was sure that at the next stop this guard would have the sheriff waiting for him. As soon as the train slowed down while going up a steep grade, he jumped off.
How many times we are like that guard. We profess one thing, but we are quite different within. Jesus tells us, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” Matt 7:21-23 Fearful thought!
Jesus rebuked the Pharisees for being all show (like that security guard) and having no real walk with God. “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.” Matt 23:25-28
Profession does no good when there is no change in our heart. Profession is worthless without the love of God dwelling inside. How much we need to have a new heart. How much we need that cleansing that only Jesus can give. Praise God! Our Great Creator promises, “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.” “I will put my laws into [your] hearts, and in [your] minds will I write them; And [your] sins and iniquities will I remember no more.” Eze 36:26,27; Heb 10:16,17
May we be certain that we are on the inside what we profess on the outside. May we so live that others will take knowledge of us that we have been with Jesus. (Acts 4:13) May we pray as did David, “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.” Ps 51:10-13