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Literature Evangelism- Part 1

Robert Koorenny


Is literature evangelism effective? What purpose does it serve? Robert reviews the history of literature evangelism, and the reasons why we still use it today.


Robert Koorenny

Assistant Personal Ministries Director for the Upper Columbia Conference



  • March 23, 2018
    9:15 AM
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Well why do we do literature of angels and what's the purpose for it we're going to look at some of the history of literature vandalism both in the world in the Christian church as well as an Adventist them and see really how. Literature vandalism has had a profound impact on the history of the Advent movement and so we're going to we're going to take a look at that and then. Look at a few passages in the Bible few quotes from L. and Y. and then in the next session it's going to be more of the practical application Here's some different ideas about how you can be involved and practically do things although we're not actually going to go out and pass out literature during the sessions although in the afternoon I think it's afternoon. Is the outreach time we will be able to do that then so a little bit of background and then the next session more of the practical application of it so let's go ahead and our heads for a word of prayer before we begin Heavenly Father we just thank you for the opportunity that we have to be gathered together to grow more not only in our spiritual walk with you but in the practical application of that walk in actually being involved in reaching out to share what we know and believe with others and so we present as we talk about literature vandalism is that's 1 aspect of that sharing that you would be with us and help us to see the importance and the significance of sharing the printed page here in 2018 and reproduce things in Jesus' name. I will just to share for a couple of seconds really quick about who I am so you can at least know of a little bit about that my name is Robert correct me and I work for a conference which is the home conference that we are in the local conference that we are located right now and in the literature ministries coordinator for this conference which means anything that has to do assuring literature that ultimately is what I try to coordinate and help happen at the local church level so I've been involved in literature manuals and since 2002 as a student canvasser I started in San Jose chemists all throughout California almost any city south of San Francisco in Oakland in California pretty much any of those cities have knocked or is in campus as well as in Kansas and Nebraska and Michigan and little bit in Southern Union not yet in Canada I know there's a couple here from Canada but. A wide variety of places across the U.S. and. Really had a been privileged to be a part of of having that experience and so it's 1 of my passions is to be able to share with people about literature of angels and so that's what we're going to do here just to give you an overview of what we're going to go over here today if you look at the screen here we're going to talk about literature of angels in the world and the Christian church and then move into the administration are going to talk about how Coal Porters got their start how cool pouring began and then we're going to talk about how literature had an impact in the growing Adventist church and then we're going to talk specifically about the effectiveness of literature and we're going to go through the 1st 3 or 4 of those pretty quickly and get down to that but hopefully you'll have at least a broad view of how literature has impacted each of those various areas. In talking about. Publishing in world history there was a T.V. show in I think it was either 1909 or 2000 where this network went around and they interviewed a bunch of people people who wrote for like Time magazine people who were influential thought leaders and they interviewed people and asked them Who do you think is the most influential person of the last 1000 years now this is 992000 so that's the end of a millennium millennium is 1000 years so the last 1000 years or so from the year 1000 to the year 2000 and they wanted to figure out who's the most influential person of the 1000 year period who are some of the people that you would you would guess might be some of those most influential people. Now there was presidents or as you know at least 4 or 5 presidents Abraham Lincoln people like that. Yeah that was actually the number 1. Pick was Johann Gutenberg and Yahoo and Bergen meant to the movable type printing press and the 1st thing that ever printed on it was the Bible that was in 1455 now what was important about this invention why was he named the most influential person of the last 1000 years it was because it made it far easier to reproduce literature in mass quantities more than just a few because up until then if you wanted to get a copy of the Bible you would take 1 of the scrolls or texts and copy it by hand and you would write out the entire thing. And so you can imagine how you know if you're writing an essay in school or something on a test like how tired your hand gets you know imagine writing the entire Bible every word in the Bible that's that's how long it took to reproduce things and even just a shorter piece of literature took the same amount of time I mean the same. What's what's the word the same not the same length but the same the same rate to the same rate of writing just to get a little piece of literature and so this invention made it possible once you set it up now it took a long time you had to set every single letter you know it's a lot longer than it is now you can't just like hit print and it prints out on a on a printer but still you could once you've got that page set you could make as many copies as you want it that was a lot faster so it made it a lot easier and it created what that did is it created a way for ideas to be spread very quickly so instead it usually back in those days if you got news of something it wasn't because a newspaper came or because an e-mail or text message it's because somebody came a person showed up and they said here's what happened over in this town but this made it possible for ideas to be spread much more rapidly and that opened up a whole new world of possibilities and we'll see why that was significant here in just a 2nd and so in calling along with the train of thought it 1 of the most important aspects of the invention that Gutenberg made which was that the printing press was not just what it was but when it was made Do you remember what year the 1st buy was printed 1455 was on the last slide 1455 now what was going on at that period in time what what period of time do we refer to that's during that it's the Dark Ages right what was the major cause of the darkness what do we call it the Dark Ages. People didn't have the Bible they didn't have the knowledge that came with having the Bible and that's because it was it was really can find it was hidden it was really just reserved for maybe you know the people that were a royalty or clergy you know really high up most people didn't even know how to read and so it was troops were hidden and that was the cause of the darkness in fact your hunt Gutenberg who invented the press the printing press this is what he said about the fact that it was being confined he said God suffers in the multitude of souls who His Holy Word cannot reach religious truth is imprisoned in a small number of manuscript books which can find instead of spreading the public treasure in other words he's saying it's hidden to the point that it's not reaching the people that it should be able to reach as confined instead of being spread then he continued on saying let us break up the seal that seals the holy things and give wings to the truth remember that phrase in order that she may go and win every soul that comes into this world by her word no longer written a great expense by hand easily palsied remember we talked about writing out your essay writing out books we don't have to have that anymore but he says it's multiplied like the wind by an untiring machine that was his vision work for what the press could do it could spread instead of confine truth which is what was happening it's easy for us to not really realise that that's the reality of those days because we have printed literature we have the Bible we have Bible in our phones we have Bible on a laptop so we have the Bible anywhere we turn but then it wasn't like that and that was his vision for that and notice what Ellen White said. That sounds very similar to what you'll have Gutenberg said she said there is a great need of men who can use the press to the best advantage that the truth may be given wings to speed it to every nation and tongue and people. It's not very similar to what going Burke said this saying it's like giving the truth wing so it can go and spread it so good vision for the press was very similar to what Ellen White said many years later that if we use the press we can really give the truth wings 1 other quote here from good Burg says this talking about is an invention again yes it is a press certainly but a press from which soon show flow in inexhaustible streams the most abundant and more most marvelous liquor that has ever flowed to relieve the thirst of men through it God will spread his word a spring of pure truth shall flow from it like a new stars will scatter the darkness of ignorance and cause a light here to for unknown to shine amongst men that was his vision that this invention could spread the gospel could spread truth to people who hadn't heard the Gutenberg Bible and this is a picture of. What 1 of them looked like. It was printed in 1455 the Dark Ages had been going on in that at that time for 979 years almost a 1000 years of the Dark Ages were going on when Gutenberg printed the 1st edition of his Bible that's a long time right almost a 1000 years the truth had been closed up and good bird printed the Bible and 60 years later Martin Luther nailed the 95 theses on the door of the chapel Wittenberg in 1517 which as we know last year was 500 years ago. 60 years after it been going on for almost a 1000 years less than 100 years later. There was a movement that was beginning and 1 of those things. 1 of the causes for that movement was because of the printing press now as you know Rome was very powerful at this period of time reformers had started to work the invention of the press launched their work forward in fact. In 3 years after 1517 Martin Luther also was a writer which means he needed to be able to spread that and he was able to do that because of the press in 3 years after 1517 when he nailed the 95 pieces it says 30000 tracks of Luther's writings were distributed so not only was he able to preach and share in that way but a lot of the spread of knowledge that he was. That he was behind was spread because of literature literature would make its way to another country and then somebody would read that and then begin to develop their own version of what he was preaching and sharing and so literature had a big influence even in the Protestant Reformation in the early years of the Reformation and so publishing was 1 of the primary weapons that defeated the iron grip of the Roman Church and a lot of times that gets lost because we think of the people not necessarily the tools that they use. And so as of course as you come down through time as Christianity began to spread we get to the period of time where the administration of the Advent movement began and we're going to look a little bit at the history of publishing in the early administration. The early Miller movement was advanced significantly because of publishing in fact if you've seen the video that they did I think a year or maybe it's been 2 years now it's called told I think it's told the world you member Joshua Himes you know a real eccentric guy 1 of the main things that he did not only did he take William Miller to the big cities and begin to to go to the huge venues and share and preach but he started several publications that Miller wrote for and then they began to share that and they printed thousands and thousands of copies and many times before William Miller would go to a place they would be sharing the literature and people would already be at least familiar with what his teachings were before he showed up and preach and so he used the printed page to be able to advance that even before 844. There was other people that were involved Ellen Harman you know her more familiar more familiarly in the that's a word but you would recognize the name Ellen White more than Ellen HARMAN But this is before she was married this is when she was still in her teenage early teenage years she had some of her friends hand copied some tracks. The early pioneers and the early. MILLER Right Movement and here and it's. Most of them were not very rich they were they were very poor most of them even have money to go out and pay for printing to be done so they have copied some of the tracks that they were using. Of course after 1844 and all that the advent movement began to gain some deeper understanding of critical Bible truths and 1 of the ways that God showed Ellen White to be able to share that was through a vision that she got in 848848 was the 1st publishing vision that Ellen White received in fact if you have most of you probably have access at least digitally to the publishing ministry the very 1st chapter is the story of how the publishing work got started in the administration let me just read a paragraph or so that shows what what happened when she was done with that vision this is what she said she came out a vision and she said to her husband whose name was what James she said James I have a message for you and then that's where we pick up she says you must begin to print a little paper and send it out to the people let it be small of 1st but as the people read they will send you means with which to print and it will be a success from the 1st and from this small beginning it was shown to be to me to be like streams of light that went clear around the world its own words vision for publishing was it's going to start small you're going to have challenges with it but eventually it's going to continue to grow and grow and gain momentum and it's going to be like streams of light to go all around the world that's the influence of the work of literature Mentalism is going to have in the Advent movement. And she came out she had a vision for James White Now if you look at some of the history of publishing and James White in the work that he did with that. There was a lot of discouragement that he met he actually decided to stop printing several times and every time he decided that Ellen White would have another vision and come out and say you're not to stop printing that's exactly what Satan wants and God wants you to continue to do the work your work is to write and so the 1st publication Now that was in anybody remember the year I didn't really emphasize it in the last 1. 840 that's pretty good if you remember 844988 just kind of combine and that was on White's 1st publishing vision 848 now the 1st publication was actually the next year in $849.00 it was called the present truth they sent out a 1000 copies of them and they were sent out completely free what they did is they would go donations were the only thing that would cover the cost they were printed in a little town called Middletown Connecticut and they lived in a town 8 miles away from there and so as James was preparing the present truth to be printed he would walk 8 miles each way back and forth just to make all the edits and to see the. Drafts and things like that and so he got a lot of walking in preparing this literature and. When when they got it all he got to use a friend's buggy what they had back in sort of a car and they took the literature to their home and what they did is they put all the literature in the middle of a room and you can read about this in publishing ministry in that chapter but they all huddled around it in with. A small group of interested ones gathered around the tracks with with tears in their eyes and they prayed for the literature that was going to go out they hand addressed everything and then James White took ALL 1000 of those copies and carried them the 8 miles back to the town to be able to send them out a lot of dedication. Went into sending out the 1st publications and this is what it looked like that was the present truth there on the left that's the 1st edition of it and you see here this is a copy of the agreement that they had to be able to pay for the literature that was printed and this is the street where where that shop was so it's kind of interesting to see some of what they know that's obviously not when he did it because those are cars but that's what it was 1 of the earliest pictures that we've been able to find for that and that's a receipt for the printing and I guess is what that was. So as as the work began to grow. They found that there was an issue with the publishing work it was it was growing and God was blessing it remember what the vision was Adele and I had that it would start small but it would continue to grow it was growing but there was an issue with the fact that it was growing and that was that there was no owning a body there wasn't a church they could on the press now you can imagine that you try to have an organization but there's nothing that owns that organization and so it was really just James White that was doing a lot of it so people would accuse him hey you're doing this for profit people are sending in all these donations or you're just taking that in living lives of these in luxury and and that was they actually did a review and find out that he was losing money by running it but a lot of stuff was was happening because of that but the biggest issue was they didn't have anything to own the press and so James White really urged for the church to incorporate and to become an official organization why because we needed something to be able to own the press the publishing work was growing and so finally the leaders decided to organize officially as a church the nomination in the mid eighty's hundreds so anybody know what year it was that the cemetery mistress became an official denomination. They're all very close. It's $863.00 the 7th Day Adventist Church was officially organized Now does anybody know what year the 1st official some of that minister house was officially Incorporated where the title said some of the administers publishing association or something or something along those lines OK You would think that to be shortly after that right it was actually 861. So the 1st thing that happened when they decided the name you remember they they came together and they were brainstorming and they finally came up with the name Seventh-Day Adventists they held that meeting because they were trying to figure out how to incorporate because of the press and so once they came up with that name this the 1st thing we have to do is incorporate the publishing house and 2 years before the administration existed the administration owned its own publishing house so the work of publishing in the administration is older than the church itself that's how integrated in the fabric of Adventism literature ministries and publishing has been. So it even now dates the church itself. As literature vandalism began to grow and expand 1 of the things that began to grow out of that was the work of coal pouring and the 1st administering Porter does anybody know what his name was. Now it wasn't left Perot you probably haven't heard much about this guy his name was George keen. He was the 1st Cole Porter in fact he didn't want to be a coal porter initially so anybody know what he wanted to be that's right he wanted to be a preacher but he was a terrible preacher. Just absolutely terrible. So he would he would practice and. I think it was I think it was and why I said you know. You need to work on you need to work on your preaching and so she gave him an idea why don't you practice and then we'll all come in and he lived with another 1 of the pioneers I don't remember there who it was right now but he lived with another family and he said you know who was. Yeah I think God's marks so they live so they finally decided OK we're going to have a review you practice get all the practice you need to when you're ready we're going to hold a little. Service and you can preach and it was the whites and the other family and they said we're going to we're going to do a review and if you've gotten good enough then we'll give you some some chances to start preaching and so he prepared he was really diligent you know this is what you want to do this was this dream he wanted to advance the gospel so he did everything he could and he practiced and he said OK I'm ready and they came in and he preached a sermon and it went really bad. And they said essentially you're not ready to be a preacher and then they had an idea the lady of the family said maybe you should take some of our books and go visit people door to door and you can share the truth with them that way because the truth is written down you don't have to know how to say it it's all you know written it's not going to change right so why don't you do that and so he began to do it and he started to take Daniel and Revelation by you Rightists myth he took that door to door and as he began to do that he found great success as a literature Vangelis I'm sure that sometimes I go to churches they think that's probably why I'm a literature mentalist. But even even without being able to preach he found a lot of success as a literature evangelist and that's how the work of corporate got started and they began to to refine that and get different books they worked with the process to develop different things but that's how the Cole Porter work in our church got started because of somebody who wanted to preach and somebody had an idea why don't you just take literature and go door to door with people. And meet people without literature and so as you know the search began to grow and spread around the country and even around the world and as it was doing that in $875.00 I've been to basically done nothing overseas and I you remember if you saw the video tell the world it seemed like most of you saw it all referenced. You remember they had that meeting and they were talking about whether or not they should expand and go overseas and send missionaries and they came out and they ended up sending Jan Anders right they sent him in 8 $174.00 so that was just around the time they were starting but up until $875.00 basically nothing they had done. Overseas Alan White had a vision in Battle Creek where she saw something a little bit different and I remember the 1st publishing vision she saw what kind of light streams of what they want all the way around the world now in this vision she she saw points of light they were all over the world. And what that was was she said we need to increase our missionary work and establish places in other countries that can be points of light in spreading the gospel in those places and that was to include publishing houses and the use of literature fact Jan Andrews 1 of the 1st things that he did when he went to Europe was he started the signs of the times in French and a couple years ago my wife and I were traveling in Europe and we actually when we were in Switzerland and we went to his grave when he was buried in Switzerland and you see on his on his. Tombstone thing you see about the only thing that says about him was he started the publication the signs of the times. So it was very integral in what he was doing now if you go to the place in Switzerland where he was just to give kind of an idea Switzerland is you know not probably shaped anything like that but there it in Switzerland you have this country is Germany and over here you have France and this is Switzerland and the place that he was was in Basel in Basel was right here it probably actually goes up more like this and the line is there whatever but it's right in in a spot where you have access to 3 countries right there so as a strategic location as well and so he did it in French Now Switzerland speaks like 4 different languages there. So he started signs of the times there and it was very intricate all in what he was doing 1 of the other 1st publishing houses was in Oslo this is the 1st publishing house that was in. Well it was what's the name of the place just. Christianity I think there's there's a name I get that confused with the book sometimes or the character in in Pilgrim's Progress but this is 1 of the 1st publishing houses that they had there so literature was was involved in a big way in fact 1 of the stories Ellen White was over in Europe visiting the publishing house in Basel in Switzerland and she was visiting and so they said well let's take you on a tour let's go through and she was on a tour and they were taking her through all the different areas where they were they you know produced the literature got everything ready where they printed it and she was going through and she got to 1 particular part of the press and as she was looking around she thought you know. And she began to to wonder something didn't didn't look exactly right and so she asked the guy that was giving her the 2 or worse the 4th man and he said What do you mean where's the 4 there's only ever been 3 people since you've been in here she said No I I had a vision and I saw this publishing house and there was 4 guys here where's the other guy and they said oh he's he's away or something right now she said as I had a vision of this publishing house I saw that angels were helping you in your work and she she had been there in vision before but the 1st time she was ever there she knew there was somebody missing and so that just shows. 1 of the ways that that she was encouraged to know that literature was 1 of the big emphasis points that people should be using. As the church began to grow and so they began to print a lot of different publications a lot of different languages throughout Europe 1 of the institutions or programs you could say that helped in the growth of the administration was a program called the tract and missionary societies when have you ever heard of that 2 maybe 3 or 4 trucks in missionary societies was a program that started out as they called it a vigilant Missionary Society which was only for women so I would have been able to be a part of that. But they expanded it began to call it track to missionary societies and they asked Stephen Haskell to lead out in the truck to Missionary Society and essentially what this program was was an early church a version of Global. That's the easiest way for us understand now but 11 years ago and Lo didn't exist you had to explain something different essential what it was as they used tracts and just. Simple forms of literature to share with everybody that they could and they would also parrot with different missionary things so they said you know if they knew of somebody that was sick they would make a bowl of soup take some literature and go give it to them they would write letters and include and put tracks in it and send it out out to people that they knew it was just very simple means of sharing the gospel with people but the difference was it was a part of their culture in those days they would just do it whenever there was an opportunity they would share literature they would do something kind and fill the need that was there for people and this truck commissioners societies began to grow in fact tracking Missionary Societies was the basis for the personal ministries department in the administration now is also the basis for Adams' book centers so if you like the A.B.C. You can thank truck and Missionary Societies Why was that because they needed a central location to send the literature to from the press where it was printed they would send it to a local track to missionary society and that's where the churches would get their literature from so it's kind of like a little hub where they sent the literature there the church would get it from there the members would get it from the church and then the members would pass it out. Kind of similar to what we do with Glo globe tracks are printed at the press they come of the converts office churches get it from the office and then members can get it from the churches as it passed out so it was it was a model that really helped the church grow in a lot of waves Now you mentioned Jan left a minute ago. We're going to reference him here just for a 2nd if you look up in the address encyclopedia this is what it says about the track commissioners societies it says the story of the beginning of the work of the some of the address church in many parts of the world is a story of literature Vangelis preparing the way for the preacher in all the South American countries except Peru the administers work began either through August publications being sent into the countries or through the work of literature Vangelis So in many countries around the world adventurism got there 1st because of literature evangelism Now if you're wondering where you can find the Encyclopedia of the Bible Commentary series it's volume 10 and 11 I think so you can if you look up tract in missionary societies you can read all about it that's in the section on there so just to give you an idea let's go through and look at a good number of the countries where the work was started because of literature middles in Argentina Australia Brazil Burma Caribbean Chile China Colombia Denmark Ecuador Egypt England Finland France gonna Haiti Italy Jamaica Mexico Norway Parkway the Philippines Russia earth way Venezuela you can Slavia and British going into all those countries the administration worked out started there because of literature Randall's them in fact this last 1 British Guyana the only 1 that's not alphabetical there. So we probably noticed I wrote from the start. British Guyana 1 of the church kids started there there was. Someone who had a parcel of trucks a package of small tracts and there was a ship that was going to British granite and this adman out going to sky went to the captain the ship and they said hey will you put this will you take this to British Gran and it took some convincing but finally he said OK I'll do it so he took it on the ship when they got to British guy and he just he took the package of tracks and threw it onto the shore that's all he did people that were living in British Granted they came they found this package opened it up and somehow those tracks found their way around and people began to read them and when the 1st person showed up the missionary there they found that a lot of people already knew some of the main beliefs that we believe was administering that's all they did he didn't do it nobody even when he just tossed his package of trucks on the on the land and that's how the ministers got started in British going into there was publishing houses that were starting to be a southwest around the world in $879.00 in Norway we look at some of these or mention some of the Switzerland France Australia England South Africa Indian Argentina were soon after that and we already talked to R.T. told you the story on what stream in Basel at the publishing house there so really at the foundation of the growth and the in the rapid expansion of the atmosphere to AROUND THE WORLD the foundation of that was literature Vangelis and that doesn't mean that that was the only thing that gave success but it was really the foundation that. The church missionaries and pastors and evangelists built on as they went to these different places. For their work Oh apparently my notes are telling me here it was of 3rd man there was 2 people and the 3rd guy was missing so I was off by 1 so. If you remember the vision she said it would start small at 1st would be like streams of light that would clear around the world the administration was beginning to expand and to grow and the influence of literature was was being felt around the world now as adventures began to grow or continue to grow. We're going to talk here for a minute about the effectiveness of literature what about today is literature still effective as a means of reaching people. We're going to take a look at that here for a minute if you have your Bibles invite you to go we're going to look at a few passages we're not going to spend a lot of time on them because they're very simple and very easy to understand but I think at the same time they're very profound we're going to start in Isaiah Chapter 55. A lot of times you may have you know if you're involved in literature evangelism you may be question from time to time is it still effective or isn't isn't digital literature you know going to be the way that things are finished isn't our e-books taking over and nobody reads books anymore we're going to talk about that in just a minute but let's go to God's Word 1st as a chapter 55 and we'll begin there in verse 8 but I will says for my thoughts are not your thoughts nor arm your ways my ways says the Lord now that's an interesting thing to say isn't it essentially what is God saying you don't know very much. Of what he's saying right your thoughts aren't my thoughts and your ways are my ways you don't know as much as you think you know. Now that's a foundation that he's building here now there's a there's some other things obviously we came in the chapter before that but that's a conversation that he uses as he continues on in this passage 1st 9 for as the heavens are higher than the Earth so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts he expands on that a little bit he says My thoughts are just a little bit better than yours it's as far as the heaven is from the earth that's pretty long ways and so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts and your thoughts of verse 10 or as the rain comes down and the snow from heaven and do not return there but they want of the earth and they make it bring forth and and bud that it may give seed to the sower and bread to the eater I told you would be talking about bread here. So show my word be that goes forth from my mouth it shall not return to Me void but it shall accomplish what I please and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it in other words God says My word is going to accomplish what it's there for and so as we share literature as we share God's word through the printed page it will have an impact God says it will and I find it interesting that God uses that foundation of saying that you don't understand the things that I do as a foundation for saying that my word is going to have an impact it may seem like in today's day and age that literature wouldn't have an impact it may seem using all of the studies and technological advances that we have that we can point to a 1000 reasons to say literature wouldn't be impactful but God says you can do all the studying you want you still and over much my ways are higher than your ways and my work is going to have an impact on people who say mentor that. God's Word will not return to Him void it go to Ecclesiastes is just. Just before Isaiah there may not immediately before but listen to the whole Bible it's pretty close please yes yes Chapter 11 now if you thought God was not able to talk any more straight than he did when he said essentially you don't know very much we're going to find a case where he does talk a little bit more bluntly even than that. And he crazy ass is Chapter 11. You know this is 1 of my favorite chapters just for how plain and easy just to to understand and we're going to have a great example of that here in just 2nd verse 11 cast your bread upon the waters are the bread again what is the bread represent. The 1st 1. Yeah that's the 1st verse that isn't there is worse 11 Chapter 11. Yeah there's no 1 for the verse in my bible is just as 11 so that's. OK chapter 11 verse 1 cast your bread upon the waters What is the bread represent. God's word Cast your bread upon the waters for you will find it after many days give a serving to how many. To 7 and also to 8 for you do not know what evil will be on the earth is coming back to that you don't know you don't know very much if the clouds are full of rain verse 3 they empty themselves on the earth and if a tree falls to the south of the north the place where the tree falls there will like that you cannot get any more plain in the Bible than that verse I find it kind of a little bit funny he says wherever a tree falls there it is. That those who were the 1st saying if apos the north of the South were over the tree falls there it lies wherever it falls it's laying right there. And you cannot get any more simple and plain than that can you. I mean that's pretty easy to understand I I bet there isn't a person in this whole city that wouldn't be able to understand that as long as they can understand what you're saying right wherever it falls there lays 1st for he who observes the when will not so and he who regards the clouds will not reap as you do not know what is the way of the wind or how the bones grow in the womb of her who is with child so you do not know the works of God who makes everything in other words now let's just give an example here. Yesterday I live in Spokane it was raining yesterday and I had just recently we wash our car and of course you know you never want to wash your car right before it rains right because it's going to get dirty again but our car was you know really dirty and it needed to be washed so I washed it and it was raining in fact 1 time I was on my way driving to the car wash and I saw the dark clouds in the distance and I looked up on my phone and sure enough it said it was going to rain in like 2 hours so you think I want to get the car wash or no no because it's going to get dirty right after I got done washing it sometimes when we see things that are going to happen or when we see things that we think are going to happen will change what we do because of that that's exactly what he's saying here in verse 4 he says he who observes the wind will not so and he regards the clouds will not reap if you're fine if you're trying to find ways not to do something you'll be able to find them. If you're trying to find and say Well I think it's going to rain here a little bit we probably shouldn't go out and pass out literature Well now we have waterproof glow tracks so that doesn't matter. And so by a bit of time there's a little bit later but if you're looking for reasons not to do it God asks you to do you always be able to find them. And he says don't let that keep you from doing what I've asked you to do he says you don't know how the bones grow in the womb you do not know the works of God who made everything notice what he says and after that in verse 6 in the morning so your see and in the evening do not withhold your hand because you do not know which will prosper this or that or whether both alike will be good God says in the context of planting seeds you don't know what's going to be effective so don't not do what I've asked you to do because you think it's not going to be effective and should've had that on there. We'll come back to John Chapter 20 but if you want to be ahead of us and you can just put there really quick you can go there now and put a marker there because we're going to come back to John Chapter 20. Now on what has an interesting quote that goes right along with this and Ecclesiastes is Chapter 11 and it sets us up for talking about the effectiveness of literature and don't worry the only thing I'm going to tell you is not you don't you're not smart enough to figure out what works. This is what she says our literature is to be distributed everywhere the truth is to be sown beside all waters for we know no not which shall prosper this or that that's right from includes us as we just read and then she says this in our airing judgment is that good or bad judgment that's bad judgment now the words are making a bad decision in our area in judgment we may think it unwise to give literature to the very ones who accept the truth most readily we know not what may be the good results of giving away a leaflet containing present truth so in other words I might think that my neighbor you know at least. 20 years ago people talked with their neighbors now it seems like people don't even know who their next door neighbor is you know 1 of 1 of our neighbors. We talk to you know all these periodic Lee. I might think that if I gave him literature it wouldn't be able to it wouldn't really impact his life I might think that but I could be completely wrong in fact if any of you have ever been involved in youth rusher or canvassing programs you've seen and experienced this firsthand and you think there is no way this person is going to get a book and then the end of getting a book in fact we used to have this book that we used at least when I started it was called he taught love it had this purple cover and it like it looks really feminine. And it's like sometimes you go to businesses it seemed like every time I would go into a liquor shop the owner would buy that book and it's like these like big burly motorcycle owning guys it's like those are the guys that would buy that book not the great controversy not like you know you what you think these you know rugged guys would be interested in they buy He taught love with a purple cover on it you know I mean that's just that's just a an example that shows we can think something and if things would be totally different. In reality and we might not give somebody literature when they're the ones that need it and would accept the truth most readily some of America's fastest growing churches in the last 10 to 15 years have been churches that have placed a big emphasis on sharing literature in fact you may have even had visitors to your home from Jehovah's Witnesses or the Mormons Jehovah's Witnesses pass out more literature than everybody I mean they every 2 weeks they pump out a few 100000000 pieces of literature I mean they they are seriously I mean you think how can that church be growing worse because they use literature even though they have some crazy some crazy beliefs you know they're still growing because they're using literature 1 of the. 1 of what I believe is the greatest reasons why literature is still effective is when you look at the entire cycle of evangelism. And this is something that that to a certain extent we have lost sight of in the administration and let me unpack that here as we talk about the effectiveness of literature there's essentially 5 phases in the cycle of evangelism there is preparing there's planting there's the growing and then the harvesting and the preserving these are the phases of angels and so preparing you prepare the ground you plant the seeds the plant grows or the person grows in their knowledge and understanding of God and in their relationship with them and then there's harvesting which is where somebody is baptized and then there's presuming you don't want that person to be baptized and then leave the church the next month right so there should be an effort to preserve the work that's been done in harvesting So these are the different. Phases in the cycle of evangelism now when when you hear somebody say in the out of an assert our church is going to be doing evangelism next month what does that mean that means we're doing an evangelist experience which is what face it's harvesting too many times in the administration when we hear evangelism we think harvesting the series where we have a speaker like John Bradshaw. Mark Bentley gets up and preaches for $27.00 nights and there's you know about 2 small calls and people come that's of angels and now that is evangelism because that's on the scale in the cycle of entrails I'm right but when you say our church is doing evangelism that shouldn't refer to just 1 segment of evangelism Now why is that important Well that's because in order to be successful here. You can't start here in order to be excess in order to be successful at harvesting something has to grow 1st now just simple agricultural I heard I heard Chad cruisers talking about planting trees if you're planting a fruit tree and you want to eventually get an apple from that DOESN'T THE TREE have to grow before it grows an apple and before the the tree grows what has to happen before that have to plant we're talking about profound things in the summer right you have to plant something before it grows. And before you plant it what do you have to do you have to prepare the ground too many times we think evangelism doesn't work in the church how many times have you heard that in the last 5 years evangelism doesn't work any more I don't believe it why don't I believe it because when you say evangelism and you're just talking about harvesting sure harvesting doesn't work if you had if the plant hasn't grown and if you haven't planted it sure harvesting is not going to work you have to be involved in the other phases of the cycle of anyone for evangelism to work so when you when there's somebody says of angels and doesn't work anymore that just means we're not doing evangelism the right way now why is that important when I was born and for the 50 to 70 years at least before I was born which I think would include pretty much everybody in this room if not everyone less or somebody that's like 90 plus years old in here which it doesn't look like there is and if it is you're doing great. The culture of the United States of America and I would even say potentially Canada you know we have some Canadian friends here. Is that it's a good thing to read the bible it's a good thing to study the bible it's a good thing to go to church on a weekly basis right just just the idea of the culture and the mentality of people in America is that if you go to church that's a good thing it's not like you're coming out of church or getting gunned down because you went there like that you could be in other countries right it's part of the culture of America America was built on Christian principles and so part of the work of evangelism I believe was done by society for many years in that the seed was planted in people's minds that it's good to read the Bible and so they would read the Bible and so when we did harvesting when we did evangelist experience in the ninety's early $2000.00 even in the eighty's we saw it work like super well why because people had been growing in their Christian walk because the seeds of reading the Bible had been planted in their hearts and in the minds so what happens you fast forward 22012015 now $2018.00 what happens when society says it's normal for for homosexuals to be married it's not cool to read the Bible anymore it's not part of society and even if the majority of people in America believe it is not what the media promotes all of a sudden the majority of the planting of seeds in people's minds in America is suddenly evaporated and we continue to do the same thing that doesn't mean that we did a great job with planting before it just means society did it for us that makes sense. So now when that's gone what do we do we just say oh it doesn't work anymore it's like your car runs out of gas. And you're like this doesn't work anymore I might as well get rid of it just leave it on the side of the road doesn't work anymore. It doesn't make sense does it what if there's 1 part of the cycle that doesn't work why not fix that 1 part and sort of throw away the whole thing that's why literature is so important now because literature plant the seed that we haven't been sowing very much as administers literature plants the seed in people's hearts and in their minds that will be able to grow whether or not you're a part of that growing process or not sometimes you maybe and that's great sometimes you may not be but that has to happen before harvesting is done. Sure somebody may understand that it's good to read the Bible and there may be some of that but it's not like it used to be literature is 1 of the only things you know so I didn't say the only thing 1 of the only things in the administration that is primarily a seed planting ministry and that's why 1 of the reasons why I believe that the literature of angels and we've talked about this already but I didn't put it there that early work is mainly planting seeds and that is 1 of the reasons why I believe that it's so important right now a couple of quotes from Illinois coper ministry page 151 she says this about the effectiveness of literature more than a 1000 will soon be converted in 1 day most of whom how many. Most now in my study of English which was not 1 of my favorite subjects in school that means more than 50 percent right so I means out of a 1000 at least 500 in 1 and I'm not concerned you know about exact numbers here but it's a good chunk not just 1 or 2. Most of whom will trace their 1st convictions to the reading of our publications. In other words literature is not this entire cycle I'm not I'm not advocating that literature should be the only thing that we do in the church No but it shouldn't be neglected and at the end of time there is going to be a large harvest of people who have made decisions bridges because they were back here planting the seeds using literature the reading of our publications 1 of their quote Christian service page 146 she says we have been asleep as it were regarding the work that might be accomplished through the circulation of well prepared literature in other words we don't know how effective it can be to use well prepared literature now I said we'll talk about digital literature. We're going to go and talk about that and then we're going to end there. Is we have about 3 minutes left. In publishing ministry there's an interesting passage that I came across that of course there were no e-books back in old whites' day. But I came across this passage and it made me think that's what. That discusses that so let's just look at it here this is how she start she says many are becoming disgusted with the inconsistency of the errors and the apostasy of the churches how many times if you've ever knocked on any doors how many times have somebody has somebody said to you I don't like going to church because it's messed up I don't like going to church because there's hypocrites there I don't like going I believe in the Bible but I don't want to go to church I don't believe in a certain denomination Have you ever heard that. That's what Ellen White said many are becoming disgusted with the inconsistency the errors in the apostasy of the church as the core continues on this what she says there are many who are seeking for light in the darkness if our papers tracks and books expressing the truth in plain Bible language could be widely circulated many would find that they are just what they want this is in the context of saying that people are disgusted with the state of churches in society people are upset about the way the churches are operating and if they could get our literature they would find it exactly what they're looking for Ellen White said this a long time ago isn't the Shaping up to be what she was talking about knows what she says continuing on but many of our brother act as though the people were to come to them or to send to our offices to obtain publications when thousands do not know that they exist. And there's a very simple principle here that I don't want you to miss if somebody doesn't know that our literature exists they're not going to go looking for it. Right so if you have digital literature if you think by putting a link on your Facebook page is going to suddenly save everybody or you think that that by having digital literature around that people can access on a website let me tell you what that person is not going to search for your literature because they don't know it's there that's 1 thing that's so great about literature is you can pass out attract any Somebody will come across this even if they're not interested in it initially. If they don't know that it exists they're not going to find it that's a limitation of digital literature you're only reaching people that are looking for it and so that's 1 of the reasons why I believe that printed literature is going to be the main thrust of that quote that we looked at. About literature is effectiveness at the end of time because. It goes to where the people are at and I know our time is up here just 1 quote that I want to finish with copra mystery page $6.00 to $7.00 this is the very work the Lord would have his people do at this time we cannot to highly estimate this work so as literature evangelism effective Yes it is did you have a question or you just wanted to. You know we have to take it to them for them to be able to see it so next session if you come back and join us we're going to talk about some of the practical ways let's just close with a word of her here really quick Heavenly Father we thank you for the opportunity we've had to look at literature we thank you for the impact it's made on the I've been a search historically and for the impact that it will have in the future and so we just pray that you would help us to be able to remember to share literature everywhere that we go as a parent Jesus' name in. 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