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Gospel Workers (1915 ed.)

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    The Need of Training Workers

    The youth must soon bear the burdens that older workers are now carrying. We have lost time in neglecting to give young men a solid, practical education. The cause of God is constantly progressing, and we must obey the command, Go forward. There is need of young men and women who will not be swayed by circumstances, who walk with God, who pray much, and who put forth earnest efforts to gather all the light they can.GW 69.3

    The worker for God should put forth the highest mental and moral energies with which nature, cultivation, and the grace of God have endowed him; but his success will be proportionate to the degree of consecration and self-sacrifice in which his work is done, rather than to either natural or acquired endowments. Earnest, continuous endeavor to acquire qualifications for usefulness is necessary; but unless God works with humanity, nothing good can be accomplished. Divine grace is the great element of saving power; without it all human effort is unavailing.GW 70.1

    Whenever the Lord has a work to be done, He calls not only for the commanding officers, but for all the workers. Today He is calling for young men and women who are strong and active in mind and body. He desires them to bring into the conflict against principalities and powers and spiritual wickedness in high places, their fresh, healthy powers of brain, bone, and muscle. But they must have the needed preparation. Some young men are urging their way into the work who have no real fitness for it. They do not understand that they need to be taught before they can teach. They point to men who, with little preparation, have labored with a measure of success. But if these men were successful, it was because they put heart and soul into the work. And how much more effective their labors might have been if at the first they had received suitable training!GW 70.2

    The cause of God needs efficient men. Education and training are rightly regarded as an essential preparation for business life; and how much more essential is thorough preparation for the work of presenting the last message of mercy to the world. This training cannot be gained by merely listening to preaching. In our schools our youth are to bear burdens for God. They are to receive a thorough training under experienced teachers. They should make the best possible use of their time in study, and put into practice the knowledge acquired. Hard study and hard work are required to make a successful minister or a successful worker in any branch of God's cause. Nothing less than constant cultivation will develop the value of the gifts that God has bestowed for wise improvement.GW 70.3

    A great injury is often done our young men by permitting them to begin to preach when they have not sufficient knowledge of the Scriptures to present our faith in an intelligent manner. Some who enter the field are novices in the Scriptures. In other things also they are incompetent and inefficient. They cannot read the Scriptures without hesitating, mispronouncing words, and jumbling them together in such a manner that the word of God is abused. Those who cannot read correctly should learn to do so, and should become apt to teach, before they attempt to stand before the public.GW 71.1

    The teachers in our schools are obliged to apply themselves closely to study, that they may be prepared to instruct others. These teachers are not accepted until they have passed a critical examination, and their capabilities to teach have been tested by competent judges. No less caution should be used in the examination of ministers; those who are about to enter upon the sacred work of teaching Bible truth to the world, should be carefully examined by faithful, experienced men.GW 71.2

    The teaching in our schools is not to be the same as in other colleges and seminaries. It is not to be of an inferior order; the knowledge essential to prepare a people to stand in the great day of God is to be made the all-important theme. The students are to be fitted to serve God, not only in this life, but in the future life. The Lord requires that our schools shall fit students for the kingdom to which they are bound. Thus they will be prepared to blend in the holy, happy harmony of the redeemed....GW 72.1

    Let those who have been trained for service now take their places quickly in the Lord's work. House-to-house laborers are needed. The Lord calls for decided efforts to be put forth in places where the people know nothing of Bible truth. Singing and praying and Bible-readings are needed in the homes of the people. Now, just now, is the time to obey the commission, “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.” [Matthew 28:20.] Those who do this work must have a ready knowledge of the Scriptures. “It is written” is to be their weapon of defense. God has given us light on His word, that we may give this light to our fellow-men. The truth spoken by Christ will reach hearts. A “Thus saith the Lord” will fall upon the ear with power, and fruit will appear wherever honest service is done.—Counsels to Teachers, 535-540.GW 72.2

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