The temple of God is holy, which temple you are. 1 Corinthians 3:17.
The church on earth is God's temple, and it is to assume divine proportions before the world. This building is to be the light of the world. It is to be composed of living stones laid close together, stone fitting to stone, making a solid building. All these stones are not of the same shape or dimension. Some are large and some are small, but each one has it own place to fill. In the whole building there is not to be one misshapen stone. Each one is perfect. And each stone is a living stone, a stone that emits light. The value of the stones is determined by the light they reflect to the world.
Now is the time for the stones to be taken from the quarry of the world and brought into God's workshop to be hewed, squared, and polished, that they may shine. This is God's plan, and He desires all who profess to believe the truth to fill their respective places in the great, grand work for this time....
It is God's design that His church shall ever advance in purity and knowledge, from light to light, from glory to glory.... His church is the court of holy life, filled with varied gifts and endowed with the Holy Spirit. Appropriate duties are assigned by Heaven to the church on earth, and the members are to find their happiness in the happiness of those whom they help and bless.
Through the ages of moral darkness, through centuries of strife and persecution, the church of Christ has been as a city set on a hill. From age to age, through successive generations, to the present time, the pure doctrines of the Bible have been unfolding within her borders. The church of Christ, enfeebled and defective as she may appear, is the one object on earth on which He bestows in a special sense His love and regard. The church is the theater of His grace, in which He delights to make experiments of mercy on human hearts.
The church is God's fortress, His city of refuge, which He holds in a revolted world. Any betrayal of her sacred trust is treachery to Him who has bought her with the precious blood of His only begotten Son. In the past, faithful souls have constituted the church on earth, and God has taken them into covenant relation with Himself, uniting the church on earth with the church in heaven. He has sent forth His holy angels to minister to His church, and the gates of hell have not been able to prevail against it.—The Review and Herald, December 4, 1900.
From From the Heart - Page 345