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Heavenly Visions

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    The Best Book on Education

    One of our workers in Australia told me of the president of a teachers’ college who said, years ago, that every graduate from that college was presented by him with the best book on education written in the English language. “It is the book entitled, ‘Education,’ by Mrs. E. G. White,” he said.HEVI 94.5

    Now you explain to me how a girl who could boast of nothing that the world calls education, could write a book like that. A president of a teachers’ college said it was the best book that he knew on education. Let the critics talk; they never wrote the best book on education as this schoolman of the world estimated it. Mrs. White herself said she never could have written these books of herself. It is the product of the Holy Spirit, written under the inspiration of God.HEVI 94.6

    These things are tokens of the presence of the living God in the midst of the educational movement. The Lord is speaking to this movement. Others all about recognize something distinctive. In Australia another educational leader pronounced this book “Education,” a “masterpiece.” In Europe, after the war, the faculty of a Catholic university decided they needed something in their language on religious and moral education. They asked one of their number to prepare a book. When it was published, one of our workers got hold of it. Some things in it sounded familiar, and on comparison, it was found to be largely a translation of Mrs. White’s book, “Education.”HEVI 94.7

    While I was attending a conference last summer in Vienna, I met a student teacher from another country who told me, “Yes, I have read that book brought out by the university; and I estimate that about eighty per cent of it is from Mrs. White’s writings.” Published by a university, advertised as the best book in their language on education! Explain to me how it fell to Mrs. White to write a thing like that! We see it in the whole series making up this monument of books. Let the critics sit down and begin to write on things like this. Never, never depreciate the value to the advent movement of the instruction that has come through that gift. I have never known a teacher or a preacher who has become weak on that gift, setting it aside, who has not become weak in his work, in school or in the field; and very generally, sooner or later, he drops out and is lost to the work, while on goes the movement from strength to strength.HEVI 94.8

    A few years ago a group, mostly educational people, went over to Asia to observe missions. Their report was published in that book, “Re-thinking Missions.” It did a lot of harm to missions. They were generally Modernists. I found, when I was over there just at that time, that evangelical missionaries of other churches were very much out of sympathy with the commission’s methods and attitude. One of those men visited our training school in China. There he found a school that interested him. Later, speaking to a university audience in America, he told them there was one school in China, a Seventh-day Adventist school, that was different. He went on to describe that school. In the detailed notes of this commission, published in three volumes, I stumbled upon several references made by him to this school of ours. It was described as “luminous with religious fervor,” and a place where students “earned while they learned.” This school, the report said, was patterned after the Avondale school in Australia.HEVI 94.9

    Is it not interesting to recall how Mrs. White in Australia, many years ago, guided in working out a new plan of education in the Avondale school? It was not to be patterned, the instruction said, after anything in America, or anything in Australia. It was to be a pattern for other schools. And the principles of education wrought out there, under the instruction of the Spirit of prophecy, have reshaped our whole educational program. It is interesting to find this university professor dwelling upon the distinctive feature of our China Institute, “luminous” with spiritual enthusiasm, and training students to work in industries out there on the hills above the rolling Yangtze. And he caught the idea that it was patterned after Avondale. We know the stamp of the Spirit of prophecy upon these educational features that men of the world admire.HEVI 95.1

    Teachers, we thank God for our Christian school system. You have had a part in developing it. But let us never forget that it did not come by the wisdom of man, but by the power of God, through the instruction of this guiding, building gift. You can no more account for this work if you set aside that gift than you could explain the exodus movement if you separated Moses and all his work and instruction from it. The Spirit of prophecy is interwoven with everything in this advent movement.HEVI 95.2

    And, brethren, in all these things is the instruction that represents the light, the bright light, that was set up at the beginning of the way, that was to shine on the advent pathway all the way through, until our feet should touch that land by sin untrod. Let us walk in the light of it and gather up every helpful ray of light we can for the stronger doing of the work.HEVI 95.3

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