Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 1 (1844 - 1868)


Ms 15, 1863

Testimony Regarding Brother and Sister Wheeler


June 6, 1863

Previously unpublished.

I was again shown the case of Bro. Wheeler. He has not come out from his confused, dark state which he has been in aright. He has made confessions, but in a manner to create sympathy every time, and leave an impression upon minds that he has been misjudged and abused. Had he come out of his dark, rebellious state right, he would have had altogether a different influence upon the company of brethren and sisters where he resides. They have sympathized with Bro. Wheeler to his, and their, hurt. They have been losing their union with the body, and all their interest is being clustered around the one man. They are not prepared to be the impartial judges in this case. 1LtMs, Ms 15, 1863, par. 1

Sister Wheeler has labored in a manner to create sympathy. She has been diligent in this matter and has given wrong impressions. Her spirit has not been submissive but strong against the body, especially those who have labored with her and her husband in regard to their wrongs. She does not understand her self. She is self-deceived, blinded by Satan as to her true condition. She has had an influence upon other minds which has led them to be deceived and regard matters in the wrong light. Those who have borne the burdens in the cause of God and have sacrificed everything for the truth, whose whole interest has been in the work, who have an experience in the things of God, will understand and know when Bro. Wheeler occupies a position acceptable to God. I was pointed back and shown that much has been done for Bro. Wheeler and his family from the first. His influence has generally been good until within a few years, yet but little fruit has been seen as the result of his labor. 1LtMs, Ms 15, 1863, par. 2

Brn. have been glad to see him and listen to his testimony and have helped him quite liberally. His family has been quite a tax to the church. The influence of his children have been an injury to the cause of God. And while Bro. Wheeler himself would take a consistent course and be true, all were willing to bear much with the children for their father’s sake. 1LtMs, Ms 15, 1863, par. 3

It was the special work of the Devil to stir up Bro. Wheeler to rebellion. His unconsecrated family was one great reason of his going into the dark and his remaining there as he has. He went among the churches with his darkness, scattering it everywhere he went. What an amount of harm has he done. Impressions have been given which have been cherished by some until they are beyond our reach and are ruined. 1LtMs, Ms 15, 1863, par. 4

He has made sideways remarks, hints, [and] insinuations which have been clothed in mystery, [and] which had a greater influence upon some minds than if he had made bold statements. He has questioned positions taken by men who have borne the heavy burden of the cause and upon whom has rested responsibilities and heavy burdens. It did not become him to take the course he did and do the harm he has done when he has accomplished so little in his labors and borne so few burdens in the work of God. 1LtMs, Ms 15, 1863, par. 5

He cast infidelity upon minds in regard to the visions, which made impressions because coming from Br. Wheeler. He has placed the visions in the wrong light. He has been a channel which Satan has used to communicate his darkness and doubts to other minds. It has cost much wearing labor from Bro. Andrews, and brought grievous trials and unnecessary burdens upon others, which he has but a faint sense of. 1LtMs, Ms 15, 1863, par. 6

It has cost altogether too much to undo what he has done. God has prospered those who have followed his opening providence, which Bro. Wheeler blindly opposed. System and order have been established in the churches, and God is bringing in souls as the result of this work. After the battle is fought, Bro. Wheeler grounds his arms and acknowledges that he has been wrong, and he has felt abused because he was not reinstated immediately into the confidence of his Brn. He has not up to this time brought forth fruit meet for repentance. Because his influence was promptly met and cut off as soon as possible that his work of death might go no farther and no more minds be poisoned, he has felt injured and hurt. His fruits have been such that he cannot yet be entrusted to take charge of the flock. Every tree is known by his own fruits. 1LtMs, Ms 15, 1863, par. 7

[Several pages possibly missing here.]

Bro. Wheeler does not see that he has done the harm he has. He has much more feeling that he has not been dealt with justly. When Bro. Wheeler realizes the part he has acted, he will cast a different influence in the place where he resides; he will straighten himself right out. When leading brethren take a man in their arms, and help him, and recommend him to new fields to the confidence of his brethren, and then when he has obtained an influence takes advantage of that influence and works directly against the influence of those whom God has called to lead out in this work, [he cannot be trusted]. While God is urging him forward to advance, Br. Wheeler is pulling back and poisoning minds with his dark unbelief and with his cruel hints and sideways expressions until the little leaven has worked and nearly leavened the lump. When a man has been left to go so far in the dark, to be so far under Satan’s control, he is not to be again trusted with any responsibility until he shall come clear back and give undoubted evidence that his rebellion is cured. 1LtMs, Ms 15, 1863, par. 8

Bro. Andrews has accomplished a good work in N.Y. His labors have been too wearing. He must take time to rest and recruit his strength. He should not be burdened with cares at home. He should be situated pleasantly where there are those who can look after his family in his absence. He should follow his best judgment in regard to his labor for he has a greater experience than any other man living in N.Y. He must follow his own judgment and work as it seems to be duty and where it seems to be duty. He should choose his own fellow laborer and unitedly in the fear of God do what they can in the hard field of Vt. 1LtMs, Ms 15, 1863, par. 9