As we celebrate 10 years of the Lord’s blessings on AMEN, I think of Isaiah 58. Ellen White counseled us to pay special attention to the message of this chapter, and to put it into practice. The Sabbath (Isaiah 58:13) is the sign of God’s creative and redemptive power, and the work of AMEN is especially focused on helping people experience God’s power to restore His image in them. This involves more than simply improving physical, mental, and emotional health. This means a new birth in Jesus, a spiritual healing, such as what this woman in my office had experienced.
As we appreciate the love of God revealed in the ministry of Jesus, we desire to join in His healing ministry, for no true healing happens apart from Him. His love is the motivation to share with others in practical, life-changing ways. Ellen White emphasized the connection of the Sabbath to the work of medical ministry:
I cannot too strongly urge all our church members, all who are true missionaries, all who believe the third angel’s message, all who turn away their feet from the Sabbath, to consider the message of the fifty-eighth chapter of Isaiah. The work of beneficence enjoined in this chapter is the work that God requires His people to do at this time. It is a work of His own appointment. We are not left in doubt as to where the message applies, and the time of its marked fulfillment, for we read: “They that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in.” Verse 12. God’s memorial, the seventh-day Sabbath, the sign of His work in creating the world, has been displaced by the man of sin. God’s people have a special work to do in repairing the breach that has been made in His law; and the nearer we approach the end, the more urgent this work becomes. All who love God will show that they bear His sign by keeping His commandments. They are the restorers of paths to dwell in. The Lord says: “If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on My holy day; and call the Sabbath a delight, … then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth.” Verses 13, 14. Thus genuine medical missionary work is bound up inseparably with the keeping of God’s commandments, of which the Sabbath is especially mentioned, since it is the great memorial of God’s creative work. Its observance is bound up with the work of restoring the moral image of God in man. This is the ministry which God’s people are to carry forward at this time. This ministry, rightly performed, will bring rich blessings to the church. Testimonies to the Church, Volume 6, p. 265.
Medical ministry, together with the message of righteousness by faith, awakens faith in the hearts of those who are looking for something better. When they see our faith in action, they grasp the hand of Christ and claim the promises of His word for themselves.
“Many have lost the sense of eternal realities, lost the similitude of God, and they hardly know whether they have souls to be saved or not. They have neither faith in God nor confidence in man. As they see one with no inducement of earthly praise or compensation come into their wretched homes, ministering to the sick, feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and tenderly pointing all to Him of whose love and pity the human worker is but the messenger—as they see this, their hearts are touched. Gratitude springs up. Faith is kindled. They see that God cares for them, and they are prepared to listen as His Word is opened.” Evangelism p. 517.
The Lord has abundantly blessed AMEN these past 10 years. Our prayer is that AMEN can facilitate more effective, “rightly performed” medical ministry in our practices, churches, and communities in order to reveal the righteousness of Christ in action. As we stay joined with Him, we will rejoice as we see His oppressed children set free.