Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 1 (1844 - 1868)


Ms 6, 1862

Testimony Concerning Moses Hull and Wife, Also Brother Whitney



Previously unpublished.

I was shown the case of Brother Hull and wife. There has been a great lack of wisdom and judgment on the part of Brother Hull. He knew, or ought to have known, his wife’s failings—that she was faultfinding and easily prejudiced against the brethren and sisters. In inviting them to Battle Creek the church wished to help them, and especially Mrs. Hull, to take a right course, mend her ways, and cause a reform with her. Some of Brother Hull’s letters from New York were calculated to nourish a spirit of faultfinding with her against the Knoxville church, and revive the old prejudice and jealousy against them. This was all wrong, and Brother Hull and wife should understand and know that the Knoxville church have had many things to bear in regard to them and the large family imposed upon them, which family was a disgrace to Brother Hull and a disgrace to the cause he was advocating. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 1

Sister Hull’s course was perfectly calculated to throw any church into confusion. She knows not as yet the influence of the Spirit of God upon the heart or the sanctifying influence of the truth. The past summer she has done better than ever before, yet she has a false tongue, and this has created trouble in every place she has lived in. Reports and statements coming from her have differed widely, and when brought to her again in her own words she has flatly denied them, and would not scruple to give the lie to the whole church rather than acknowledge that she had been false-tongued. Her conversation is not upon profitable subjects but upon herself—her past, foolish, girl’s life. She talks about so many things that are not of the least consequence that she does not know what she says half the time. There is no weight, no substance, in her talk. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 2

By our words we shall be justified and by our words we shall be condemned. What an account will the foolish talker and the talebearer have to render in the time of God’s visitation! If Sister Hull was truly converted, from the abundance of the heart the mouth would speak. Her conversation would not be about her girlish follies but upon Jesus, His wondrous love, His redeeming power. The same fountain will not send forth sweet water and bitter at the same time. Cleanse the fountain and the streams will be pure. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 3

Wherever Brother and Sister Hull go they will have trouble, for they carry it with them. The elements of disunion, jealousies, and evil-speaking they carry with them, and they are perfectly calculated to stir up strife. If Brother Hull took a right position and would stand unmoved by his wife’s course, and he should exert an influence to counteract hers, then there would be something to hope for. But as it is there is no prospect of a reform. Brother Hull can do well to labor to bring souls into the truth, but he cannot build up a church. His judgment is not good. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 4

I was pointed back to the work in New York and then the snare Brother Hull fell into. God would never have permitted him to be brought into the difficult position he was brought into if his heart had been as humble as it should have been and he realized that his strength was in God. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 5

Satan saw that the influence of the visions was affecting some, and by controlling Sister Ogden and making her think she had a vision while under a satanic influence confirmed the opinions of many that Brother White controls his wife and gives her visions; therefore the visions are only Brother White’s mind. God had nothing to do with that exercise. It was a human and satanic influence to counterfeit the work of God. If any of the young Sabbathkeepers in that section are reproved in vision, it will not have much weight. The first thing in their mind will be, Why it is just like Sister Ogden’s. Brother Hull said she looked just like Sister White when she was in vision. And that is all the influence the reproof would have. I saw, Brother Hull, that had your heart and mind been where it should you would never have been brought into that difficult spot. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 6

In regard to Brother Whitney, I saw that his course was not what it ought to have been. Those who go with the tent should not be even sociable with females and should avoid anything like intimacy. Those who are laboring for the salvation of souls and are preaching unpopular truth are a sect everywhere spoken against, and their gallantry or attention to the females must be laid aside or they will certainly be evil spoken of. They must abstain from the very appearance of evil, and those who labor with the tent should utterly abhor everything like courting. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 7

I saw that Sister Hull tried to reform, the past summer, but this careless, reckless talking has become so natural that she doesn’t see or realize her words or their effect. Her influence for good is nothing, but if she can be where she cannot harm much, that is the place for her. Brother Hull utterly fails to understand and manage her case. He at one time blames and finds fault with her for things that he is guilty of himself, and then he sympathizes with her and blames and censures those who do not deserve censure. He moves by impulse. He needs to be where there is a strong influence to hold him, and guide him in the right course. This is the only thing that can save Brother Hull. Left to himself he will destroy the effect of his own labors by his lack of judgment and his wife’s wrong, unsanctified influence. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 8

It seemed so cruel and such a misfortune that with Brother Hull’s talent he could not have the qualifications so necessary, and a good home influence to strengthen him. He throws his soul into the work of preaching, labors with all his might, loves it, and would be the strongest man we have among us as a laborer but for the lack of essential qualifications, which makes him weak. He must be where there are those who will supply in a great measure his lack, and where their expectations will not be raised in regard to his wife. It is wrong to deceive any company of brethren and sisters and lead them to think that Sister Hull would be a help to them, and then they find out by sad experience that she is a curse instead of a blessing. This has stunned them in the West. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 9

I saw that it was a cruel work, the feelings that have been raised and spoken out in regard to Martha and Cornelia. They have been made a matter of speech and ridicule. God frowns on such things. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 10

I was directed to Matthew 16:19. “Whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” I was shown that the action of the church and their business matters has been rather disgusting in the eyes of some, and looked foolish and of no account. No importance has been attached to the course they deemed proper to pursue. God has attached importance, the greatest importance, to the actions of His church. They are the light of the world. He will instruct His people and guide them, yet these things have looked very inferior in the minds of Sister Benedict, Diantha, Sister Lewis, Sister Bacheler, Roxana, and some others. That which the church deemed of the highest importance has at times been made a matter of ridicule. At the same time, if one is sharply reproved and censured for his wrong course and feels distressed over the matter, Sister Benedict and Diantha would attach the highest importance to the feelings of such and take a special burden on account of it. It is made of greater account than all the moves and actions of the church. This is the work of Satan. It is a misplaced, unsanctified sympathy. God frowns upon such a course. 1LtMs, Ms 6, 1862, par. 11