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    1908

    January 29, 1908

    Instruction to Ministers

    EGW

    Ministers are in danger of becoming lax in regard to the responsibilities that rest upon them. They need to bear in mind that it takes more than powers of oratory to make a minister an ambassador for Christ. The church and the world look to the pastor for an example in self-denial and cross-bearing and devotion to God. Indolence, fitfulness, irresolution, disqualify him for the position of a minister of God.NPUGleaner January 29, 1908, par. 1

    A man may be harsh and coarse in nature, and lacking in discernment; but by constant connection with Christ he may be assimilated to the divine nature, and come to reflect the likeness of Christ. Contact with truth will elevate and ennoble him. That which is rough and coarse in his nature, that which savors of pride of opinion and self-esteem, will be driven from the heart, and the gentleness and meekness of Christ will take their place. The man who is walking in the footsteps of Christ, looking to him as the Author and Finisher of his faith, will see the amazing contrast between his own weak character and the perfect pattern set in the life of the Saviour, and he will not, he can not, become exalted. In humility of heart he will cry, “Lord, who is sufficient for these things?”NPUGleaner January 29, 1908, par. 2

    The work of the minister of the gospel is not merely to preach. Christ is his example, and Christ gave himself. The expression of infinite love that God gave to the world in the gift of his Son marked the limit of his power to give. He could bestow no more. “If any man serve me,” Christ said, “let him follow me.” By studying the life of Christ, let the worker learn how he lived and worked, and strive each day to live his life.NPUGleaner January 29, 1908, par. 3

    There has been a decided failure among church members to be Christ-like in dealing with the erring. They have not sought to restore according to the directions given in the Word. The wrong-doer has not been considered from the standpoint of the value of the soul. There are youth in our midst who need to be looked after with tender pity; but instead of acting the part of the loving shepherd, many have acted the part of judges. They have condemned, instead of seeking after them with tender compassion. The minister needs much of the grace of Christ in his labors for this class.NPUGleaner January 29, 1908, par. 4

    My brethren, pray for the young, and converse with them. Present before them their baptismal vows. Teach them what it means to take this step, and kindly and affectionately show them their responsibility. “Ye are buried with him by baptism,” the apostle declares, “wherein ye also are risen with him, through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.” “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affections on things above, and not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.”NPUGleaner January 29, 1908, par. 5

    When you find the church members arrayed one against another, call a halt, and come to an understanding. There is one sure way of remedying this evil. Follow the Bible rule in dealing with the difficulty. “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness, considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.” A deep interest and love for souls will give tact in laboring for the erring. The tenderness and love of Christ manifested in your efforts for such souls will accomplish more than any other power.NPUGleaner January 29, 1908, par. 6

    The first work of every minister should be to conform his own life to the teachings of truth; for God can not give souls into the care of one who has not himself learned to humble the heart before him. O that the Holy Spirit would work mightily on the hearts of our ministers and teachers, making them willing to be taught God's way. “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling,” the apostle says, “for it is God that worketh in you, both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” Are we willing to enter into the work of self-examination that this command involves? Are we willing to put away the evil from our own lives, and live with an eye single to the glory of God?NPUGleaner January 29, 1908, par. 7

    The experience of Paul should be the experience of every true servant of God in these last days. He said, “We preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus our Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in your hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.”NPUGleaner January 29, 1908, par. 8

    “As ye have therefore received the Lord, so walk ye in him: rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving. Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in him.”NPUGleaner January 29, 1908, par. 9

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