Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 3 (1876 - 1882)

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Lt 24, 1882

White, W. C.

Healdsburg, California

December 18, 1882

Portions of this letter are published in TDG 361; 3Bio 220.

Dear son Willie:

My eyes have been in such a condition I could not write. I think it would have been just as well for me to have accompanied you East as far as advancement in writing is concerned. I am venturing this morning. Have been busy with many thoughts since three o’clock. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 1

I am anxious to say something to you but scarcely know what to say. My head and heart are full. Elder [Uriah] Smith sent me a letter which I have sent to you. Brother Henry Kellogg sent me a letter with the productions in it from the Moon. They are not to blame for the suppositions. They act in accordance with their principles and many of our own faith are far more inconsistent than these men who have not had so great light. But those only who will bear the test of God will be found faithful and true. Spiritual things are spiritually discerned. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 2

Those who walk in the light are the only ones who follow Jesus perfectly. Those who walk in darkness will not come to the light. They hate the light. If Elder Smith’s statements are true, God has never spoken by me. I know them to be false. He is blinded by the enemy of all righteousness. He has accepted William Gage as his counselor and light bearer. If the blind lead the blind, both will fall into the ditch. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 3

You see, our people are the subjects of remarks because “the world knoweth us not,” says John, “because it knew Him not.” [1 John 3:1.] They pass their judgment from outward observation, but the Strength of Israel will sustain and support those who will walk in all humility, meekness and lowliness as dear children. They will be ever clinging to Jesus, the sure Helper, their Fortress in the day when pressed and besieged by foes. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 4

I hope and trust the Lord will work for His people and that these poor, blinded, deceived souls may see where they have made mistakes and correct them before it is too late for wrongs to be righted. I am not surprised at all that the outsiders are watching critically. I am not at all surprised that they pass their comments upon our people as they do; neither am I surprised that they judge me and my work as they do. What else could I expect of them? 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 5

Every reason has been given them by the inconsistent course of our people in Battle Creek. They are indeed wide of the mark, but no more so than Elder Smith and William Gage. When our own people furnish, by their own course of action, abundant material for them to shape according to their own perverted ideas, can we be surprised? I am not at all surprised. As for myself, I expect much worse things than this, for the dragon is wroth [with] the remnant who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus. These things must come, and we must in Christ meet them. Without great astonishment we must submit to be misunderstood and our work misjudged. The message God sends to His people [will] be contradicted, misconstrued, and misinterpreted just as Satan designs it shall be, that the words of reproof and warning shall fall upon ears that will not hear and hearts that will not receive, and understanding that will not be comprehended. All this I have had set before me distinctly. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 6

Those who are determined not to be convinced will follow their own blinded judgment. Their unconquerable obstinacy is sad indeed for themselves, for they know not the time of their visitation. They grieve the Spirit of Christ away from their hearts. He looks upon them with pity and with indignation or anger, for Christ was angry at the inconsistent course of His adversaries. [The] anger that Christ manifested was the quick displeasure which was felt in His just mind at the exhibition of injustice and wrong doing, while Jesus called them justly what they were—deceivers, self-conceited, so blinded by their own prejudices that they would neither hear nor understand the plainest and most decided declaration. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 7

Christ gave His disciples to understand that He preached in parables and hid the great truths He presented under similitudes that persons who had not the truth or the love of it, whose hearts are misled by their own tempers and gratified inclinations, could not know of His doctrines. An honest and pure heart will discern [Christ’s] doctrines, although given in parables. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 8

The unfruitful hearers are specified by our Lord as the skeptical, the superficial, or the secular. These cannot discern the moral glory of the truth or its practical, personal application to their own hearts. They lack that faith which overcomes the world and, as the sure consequence, the world overcomes them. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 9

There are some fruitful hearers in Battle Creek, just in proportion as they understand the Word and receive it into good and honest hearts, and that will be in proportion to their faith. It is not the learned men that can make the heart to feel. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 10

“Flesh and blood hath not revealed this unto thee, Peter, but my Father which is in heaven.” [Matthew 16:17.] It is the close connection with God which opens and makes quick and sharp the understanding. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 11

Men in Christ’s day brought upon themselves that blindness that in seeing they see not and the willful deafness that in hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. Jesus told them that there was no reason for them to be surprised at what He had stated in regard to their unbelief, for Isaiah had predicted the same. “By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: for this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.” Matthew 13:13-15. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 12

Some of the people professing to believe the truth for this time will be in a similar position. They will not understand the marvelous work of God by which God confirms His Word. They will not perceive [that] the workings of God’s Spirit is wrought by His power, not because the evidence is not sufficient, but because the waywardness and the corruption of their own hearts will not suffer them to honestly and candidly weigh these evidences, for the sins of the people have hardened their hearts and their conformity to the world has clouded their conceptions of divine things. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 13

Pride and selfishness and vanity have closed the ears and blinded the eyes of their understanding lest the appeals of the Spirit of God should, with power, arouse the attention and command assent. They are unwilling to be directed in the path of righteousness which would lead to the city of God. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 14

Dear Willie, our trust must be wholly in God. He will be to us a present help in every time of need. Let us wait upon the Lord and exercise faith in His promises. He will hear us. Only believe. The Captain of our salvation will not leave us to guide our own bark. We shall have His help and His wisdom just when He sees we need it. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 15

I pray most earnestly every day that God would give you victory in His name. I do have freedom in prayer. It is an important time. It is a time when Satan is doing his utmost to defeat the work of God that the enemies of truth may triumph; but hold fast the mighty arm of infinite power. It always has prevailed [and] always will. Only believe that He can do more than you can ask or even think. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 16

I have spoken twice in Santa Rosa. Was there last Sabbath. Was at Ukiah Sabbath before last. Had excellent meetings. The courthouse was crowded. Spoke [in the] evening after the Sabbath and Sunday evening in the courthouse. Everything had been said about me that could be, but the Lord gave me very great freedom, and all listened most attentively. The meeting, I believe, will do good. I spoke last Sabbath in Santa Rosa and visited and prayed with three families. There is work in this kind of labor, but a great deal more of it should be done if we expect to prosper as a people. [We need to] come right to the ones encased in error, who are discouraged, who are sick, and pray most earnestly for them. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 17

I hope to hear from you soon. The school is doing well. There are several deciding on the truth. We think the Lord is visiting Healdsburg in mercy. But when I think of Battle Creek I tremble, for where great opportunities are granted, where great light is given, unless there is an appreciation of these opportunities and privileges, darkness will follow to that degree that the light has been given and not improved. These will justify themselves before men, but God knoweth the hearts. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 18

Those who look no further than the outside may judge from appearance, from pretensions after the world’s standard. God judgeth of things according to truth. He often abhors both persons and things that are held by men in the highest estimation, for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God. But those who are intoxicated with self-deception are insensible to every evidence, however powerful it may be, if it does not agree with their course of action. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 19

May the Lord reveal His power in the church at Battle Creek and work in such a manner that those who are unbelieving cannot gainsay nor resist is my prayer. 3LtMs, Lt 24, 1882, par. 20

Mother.