What success would we have in canvassing our books, and what good would they do if prospective buyers and readers would first consult the ministers of their own denomination and would take their counsel? We all know the answer—There would be no books sold and no books read.
And if we had consulted the ministers of our respective former denominations and accepted their counsel, how many of us would have become Seventh-day Adventists? The overall answer is, “Not one of us.” Such has been the fate of all who have followed the decisions of uninspired men against inspired men of God. Men of piety, men deeply rooted in their religion, as were the priests and rabbis in Christ’s day, have been the most successful in keeping away the light of God from the people. This is a fact that no one should ever forget or neglect to give consideration to.
Moreover, since our personal rights of investigating truths purported to be sent from God, without the interference of our former ministers, took us out of the churches which are mindful only of past truths, and brought us into the Advent present Truth some years ago, should we now surrender these rights and become spiritually dependent on others to tell us what is Truth and what is error? Why judge ourselves spiritual invalids rather than full grown Christians? And why take the ministers’ word now against advanced purported inspired present Truth, if such a step previously taken would have been disastrous, would have cheated us from accepting the Advent Truth? Is it not true that if we would let others think for us, we might be cheated as badly as were the Jewish common people cheated by the priests and rabbis in Christ’s day?
In view of the experiences of those who have gone before us, we feel confident that you will accept this booklet which is being sent to you, and which means so much to us and to thousands of other Seventh-day Adventists throughout the world. Will you examine it for yourself as did the noble Bereans (Acts 17:10, 11), independently of other people’s influence or prejudices? Only prayer and study willkeep you from error and lead you into God’s marvelous light—
“. . . 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.”—Testimonies to Ministers, p. 106.
“There is yet much precious truth to be revealed to the people in this time of peril and darkness, but it is Satan’s determined purpose to prevent the light of truth from shining into the hearts of men. If we would have the light that has been provided for us, we should show our desire for it by diligently searching the word of God. Precious truths that have long been in obscurity are to be revealed in a light that will make manifest their sacred worth; for God will glorify His word, that it may appear in a light in which we have never before beheld it. But those who profess to love the truth must put to the stretch their powers, that they may comprehend the deep things of the word, that God may be glorified and His people may be blessed and enlightened. With humble hearts, subdued by the grace of God, you should come to the task of searching the Scrip-tures, prepared to accept every ray of divine light, and to walk in the way of holiness.”—Counsels on Sabbath School Work, p. 25