Distinguish!—Let us distinguish clearly between high ideals and objectives on the one hand, and the method of achieving them on the other. Because some are conscientiously constrained to question, or even to oppose, a proposed method of achievement, let not their comrades conclude that they are thereby opposed to the standards themselves. A recognition of this principle will avoid many unfortunate misunderstandings
Critics!—Let them growl and bark. Nor let us turn from our heaven-appointed tasks to shy stones at them, annoying though they may be. If they can divert our attention and thus check our work or slow our advance, their real objective is attained. Let us not yield to their tantalizing schemes. We'have a great work to do, and cannot afford the time. A big mastiff will not deign to notice a noisy little terrier that barks at his heels. Remember Nehemiah on the wall.
Apostasy! —" Losses through apostasy," is an expression familiar to all. Full apostasy is a departure from the faith, a denial of the truth, perchance the acceptance of the false. But before taking that fatal step, comes carelessness, indifference, drift. From such many could be reclaimed. Here is a challenge for our labors, watchings, and prayers. The tragedy of still believing but not continuing,— convinced but no longer obedient, assenting but not held! God help such. What are we doing for them?
Tests!—Beware of making actual tests of fellowship out of those things which the Spirit of prophecy expressly and explicitly declares are not to be made tests. Such prohibitions may be explained away, but God will not hold him guiltless who thus flaunts both the letter and the spirit of His recorded will. There are other counts—of belief and conduct, of attitude and action—which form a legitimate basis for discipline. Let these prevail. Let us not violate the expressed declarations of the Spirit of prophecy in order to preserve the purity and unity of the faith.
Loose!—There are too many loose assertions and unprovable" statements current in our preaching. There are too many alleged facts that have never been yerified, purported statements that have never been checked, and historical data without corroboration. Let us be sure of our authorities. Carelessness here is neither an honor to God nor a credit to truth. It is dishonest to repeat assertions that have been challenged, and for which we do not have unimpeachable, trustworthy proof, no matter how pleasing and apt they sound. Every quotation, fact, or figure of questionable validity should be held in abeyance until subjected to rigid verification and approval. Nothing questionable will be used by the honest spokesman. Truth is not advanced, nor
God and His cause honored, by unworthy testimony. The "truth" demands immaculate truthfulness.
L. E. F