" Beware of rejecting that which is truth. The great danger with our people has been that of depending upon men, and making flesh their arm. Those who have not been in the habit of searching the Bible for themselves, or weighing evidence, have confidence in the leading men, and accept the decisions they make; and thus many will reject the very messages God sends to His people, if these leading brethren do not accept them.
" No one should claim that he has all the light there is for God's people. The Lord will not tolerate this. He has said, 'I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it.' Even if all our leading men should refuse light and truth, that door will still remain open. The Lord will raise up men who will give the people the message for this time. . . .
" Young men should search the Scriptures for themselves. They are not to feel that it is sufficient for those older in experience to find out the truth; that the younger ones can accept it from them as authority. The Jews perished as a nation because they were drawn from the truth of the Bible by their rulers, priests, and elders. Had they heeded the lessons of Jesus, and searched the Scriptures for themselves, they would not have perished. . . .
" We must study the truth for ourselves. No man should be relied upon to think for us. No matter who he is, or in what position he may be placed, we are not to look upon any man as a criterion for us. We are to counsel together, and to be subject one to another; but at the same time we are to exercise the ability God has given us, in order to learn what is truth. Each one of us must look to God for divine enlightenment. We must individually develop a character that will stand the test in the day of God. We must not become set in our ideas, and think that no one should interfere with our opinions."—" Testimonies to Ministers," pp. 106-110.
" The minister who ventures to teach the truth when he has only a smattering knowledge of the word of God, grieves the Holy Spirit. . . .
" There is no need for weakness in the ministry. The message of truth that we bear is all-powerful. But many ministers do not put their minds to the task of studying the deep things of God. If these would have power in their service, obtaining an experience that will enable them to help others, they must overcome their indolent habits of thought. Let ministers put the whole heart into the task of searching the Scriptures, and a new power will come to them.. . .
" Ministers who would labor effectively for the salvation of souls must be Bible students and men of prayer. It is a sin to be neglectful of the study of the word while attempting to teach it to others. . . .
" My message to ministers, young and old, is this: Guard jealously your hours for prayer, Bible study, and self-examination. Set aside a portion of each day for a study of the Scriptures and communion with God."—"Gospel Workers," pp. 98-100.
"Of all men upon the face of the earth, those who are proclaiming the message for this time should understand their Bible, and be thoroughly acquainted with the evidences of their faith. One who does not possess a knowledge of the word of life, has no right to try to instruct others in the way to heaven. . . .
" Thousands of men who minister in the pulpit are lacking in the essential qualities of mind and character because they do not apply themselves to the study of the Scriptures. They are content with a superficial knowledge of the truths of God's word, and they prefer to go on losing much in every way rather than to search diligently for the hidden treasure. . . .
"We talk about the first angel's message and the second angel's message, and we think we have some understanding of the third angel's message. But as long as we are content with a limited knowledge, we shall be disqualified to obtain clearer views of the truth. He who holds forth the word of life must take time to study the Bible and to search his own heart. Neglecting this, he will not know how to minister to needy souls."—"Gospel Workers," pp. 249-251.