Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 1 (1844 - 1868)


Lt 15, 1863

Noyes, Brother and Sister

Battle Creek, Michigan

January 24, 1863

Previously unpublished.

Brother and Sister Noyes:

I was shown some things concerning you both, which I must write. I saw that you both have a work to do, a great work, before you can be approbated of God. You have taken hold of the truth, but the truth has not taken hold of you and wrought for you as God designed it should. You have not let the truth and Spirit of God do its office work upon your hearts, and affect your lives, as it surely must if you are saved. 1LtMs, Lt 15, 1863, par. 1

Brother Noyes is coarse and rough, slack in his habits, boisterous in conversation with unbelievers, overbearing and easily raised. He has not had a saving influence among unbelievers. He could not win souls to the truth, but his course has a tendency to drive unbelievers farther off and prejudice them against our faith, and disgust them. 1LtMs, Lt 15, 1863, par. 2

God does not lay upon Brother Noyes any burden for others, for He sees that he has all that he can do to save his own soul. He feels capable of marking out a course for his brethren to pursue. He can see what he thinks they ought to do, but fails to see the work he has to do in order to be a consistent Christian, conforming his life and acts to the truth. Until he does this, he only injures the truth by seeking opportunities to talk with others in regard to it. God excuses him from all such burdens. 1LtMs, Lt 15, 1863, par. 3

The great inquiry with him should be, “What shall I do to be saved?” Your words are rough, not choice and select, and you are a poor representative of the truth. You are not a humble Christian. Your words and acts testify against you. You must entirely reform, or the people of God will advance and leave you far behind. You do not adorn your profession, but by your life and acts cause the enemies of our faith to reproach the truth. 1LtMs, Lt 15, 1863, par. 4

I was shown that your influence at home, in your family, is not good. It is not elevated, but altogether too low, passionate, and harsh. You are teaching your children sad lessons, and impressing their young minds in a wrong way. You do not control yourself and speak mildly, patiently, but you let anger dwell in your heart, and act it out in your family. Again I saw that you were jealous of your brethren. You want to dictate too much and have them come to your ideas, when your judgment is not good and should not be followed. A man who leaves things at such loose ends about his farm and home, who manifests so little order and good taste in his worldly, or business, transactions, should not be very zealous to dictate in regard to church affairs, for [if] his voice should rule in the church, the church would go all to pieces. 1LtMs, Lt 15, 1863, par. 5

I saw that you did not see and realize your lack, your deficiency. You think yourself competent to dictate when you are not. You should put away your jealousy and take a position to listen to your brethren. Unless you do, certain ruin is before you. Your jealousy will only injure and destroy yourself, for your brethren will not notice it. Sacred duties are before them, which they will form. Therefore you will hurt yourself much more than you can them. 1LtMs, Lt 15, 1863, par. 6

You lack judgment, order, refinement, and good taste, and must be willing that your lack should be supplied by their sufficiency. You must be helped by them, advised and counseled by them, and then you should listen to them and be teachable, not think you know it all and can guide them. 1LtMs, Lt 15, 1863, par. 7

By a holy life and godly conversation you can testify to the saving power of the truth. An orderly and correct deportment maintained by you will lead unbelievers to see that the truth has accomplished much for you. It is not enough to merely profess the truth, but all must be doers of the word. All must be workmen. Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 1LtMs, Lt 15, 1863, par. 8

(Signed) Ellen G. White.

[P.S.] Brother Maynard, I have no copy of this. Please preserve this. Keep it in your hands and read it to Brother and Sister Noyes. 1LtMs, Lt 15, 1863, par. 9