Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 1 (1844 - 1868)


Lt 11, 1865

Cornell, Angeline



Previously unpublished.

Dear Sister Angeline Cornell:

I cannot feel clear without saying a few words to you. I have had an interest in your case for the reason of its being presented before me several times in vision. I read over the testimony frequently for you and Sister Mary and inquire in my own mind, Are they living up to the testimony? I believe Mary is doing the best she can. I have made inquiries of several in regard to what you were doing, if you were helping your husband in meetings, and was sorry to learn that you did not manifest much interest and take much part in meetings. 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 1

Please read the parable of the talents, in Matthew 25. Those who had improved the talents given them, and doubled them, received the commendation from their Lord: “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.” [Verse 21.] He that did not improve upon the one talent given him, but hid his talent in the earth, came complaining—as an excuse for his slothfulness,—“I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed: and I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine.” [Verses 24, 25.] He carried the idea that God was such a severe and unjust master that he was afraid to make any use of the talent. Again, he would not himself be benefited with the improvement, for God would gather the improvements Himself. Therefore he did nothing with his talent. 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 2

“His lord answered and said unto him, Thou wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I have not strawed; thou oughtest therefore to put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own with usury. Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents. ... And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” [Verses 26-30.] 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 3

You have had light graciously imparted to you of God in regard to your duty. If you choose to hide your talent you are without excuse, for your duty has been made known. You know your duty but are too slothful to perform it. “Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers.” [Verse 27.] The light given you, you are to exchange with others, impart to others, benefit them by your experience. If you are the means of gaining a soul from the ranks of Satan you have gained other talents to your Lord. That soul you have been the instrument of saving, in his or her turn can improve the talent given, and the work moves onward. 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 4

Oh, how many, who have done little or nothing for the salvation of souls or to benefit others, will be disappointed to find they have no reward laid up in heaven. They were too slothful here to invest much in the truth and in the salvation of others. They sought their ease, their pleasure; shunned burdens and crosses and responsibilities. “For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.” Matthew 16:27. “Who will render to every man according to his deeds: To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life.” Romans 2:6, 7. 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 5

“I am He which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.” Revelation 2:23. “And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.” Revelation 22:12. 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 6

You can invest little or much, as you please, in this great work. Remember the words spoken to him who hid his talent. “For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance; but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath.” [Matthew 25:29.] 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 7

I thank God my whole interest is in this work. The truths to me so precious form a part of my existence. They are interwoven with my very being. I have taken stock in the next world, and mean by patient continuance in well doing to seek for immortality, that I may be rewarded with eternal life. I will not choose my ease, my own way, or my own desires, but will labor with all the energies I can command. If I fail, I mean to fall in the battle. Let me be found not a slothful servant, but let me die at my post; or if Christ comes, let His hands lay off my armor and place upon my head a crown of life that fadeth not away. 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 8

You have no cares of children and have less excuse for your indolence than most ministers’ wives. I speak plainly, hoping to arouse you. I have your present, your future, and eternal good in view. May God remove every deceptive influence of Satan from you and cause you to feel what He requires of you in regard to your talent. 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 9

In love for your soul, 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 10

Your friend. 1LtMs, Lt 11, 1865, par. 11