Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 3 (1876 - 1882)

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Lt 10, 1881

Brother

Oakland, California

October 26, 1881

Previously unpublished.

Dear Brother:

I hoped to have an opportunity to converse with you before leaving the campground. I called at your tent several times, but you were not in. Since returning home, I have still had a deep interest for you, and I cannot feel clear without addressing you by letter. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 1

When I first met you at Arbuckle, your countenance was familiar to me, and I had strong hopes that you would erelong yield to the convictions of the Spirit of God and take your position with those who are keeping all His commandments. I was pleased to see you again in the congregation at Sacramento listening with undisguised interest to the preaching of the truth. Again I felt an earnest desire that you should seek for those things which make for your peace, that you should yield to the convictions of the Holy Spirit as to what is truth and live by every word which proceedeth out of the mouth of God. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 2

Your case has been presented before me in vision—a man of noble qualities of mind. You are one whom God can use to advance His cause. I do not mean that it is your work to stand in the desk, but that God has claims upon you to exert your influence in favor of the truth. You have been several times upon the very point of deciding to do this, but the enemy of all righteousness has said, “Do not act hastily. You will regret it if you do this. What will your friends say? How can you succeed in worldly business?” 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 3

Pride of heart has clamored for the victory and, sad to say, has gained it. Wicked babblers who would turn the truth of God into a lie to serve their own interests and please the author of all evil, have had greater influence to hold you in your present position than you have cared to acknowledge. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 4

You have been a very kind-hearted, considerate man, but this will not long continue if you still resist the influence of the Spirit of God. You will not only refuse to submit to the divine claims yourself but will feel that your wife and children are making you unhappy by their obedience to God. You will become an active agent in the enemy’s hands to hinder them in following out their convictions of duty. In thus doing, you will employ your powers in opposition to the God of heaven in scattering from Christ. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 5

You cannot afford to be found in such a position when Christ shall come or when you may be called to yield up your life. Then will you see that life as you have never yet seen it. You will not then regret that you were so unlike the world in spirit and example, that you were simple enough to choose Christ and the truth, but will bitterly lament that you allowed so many years of life to be spent in the service of the worst enemy of Christ, that you withheld from your Saviour that service which He had a right to expect and which should be freely given. He died to obtain your willing obedience and your love. He has bought you with an infinite price. Give Him His own without reserve. This is His due. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 6

You claim to be an honest man in dealing with your fellow men, but every day of your life you rob God of the service which is His. You rob Him in violating His Sabbath, the seventh day which He has sanctified and blessed and which He calls His holy day. He has given you six days for your secular business and reserved only one to Himself. But you have studied your convenience instead of giving to your Creator His own. You are not just with God, and He will surely bring you into judgment for this showing contempt for His righteous law. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 7

Jesus loves you and He is pleading for you before His Father in the heavenly courts. He presents His wounded hands and says, “Spare him a little longer; cut not down the cumberer of the ground. I will give him still another opportunity. I will let the light of truth shine still more brightly upon his soul, and after that, if he refuses, Thou mayest cut down the unfruitful tree.” [Luke 13:7-9.] 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 8

I feel the deepest interest for your soul. I know what you will be if you choose your own course. I know what you may be if you will accept the truth as it is in Jesus. I would plead with you, as a friend, to choose Christ, His self-denial, His sufferings, His reproach as your portion here. The cross of Christ will be to you a pledge of eternal life in the kingdom of glory. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 9

If you remain as you are, neglecting the truth, neglecting this great salvation, your example will confirm others in their impenitence. You will not travel the road that leads to death alone. Others will be borne down by your influence. You will thus become the successful instrumentality of the adversary in leading souls to reject the truth and be disloyal to the God of heaven. You will lead others to transgress His plainly expressed commandment that the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 10

You are convinced that those who claim the first day to be the Sabbath of the Lord are false teachers. You know that there are many scoffers to “these last days” who deny the promise of the Lord’s coming. They may profess to be Christians, but are they followers of Christ? Do they not wrest the Scriptures to their own destruction? You may hesitate to pronounce sentence against these men. You may say, These are learned men, they ought to know. True they ought to know but are these men greater than the angels that sinned? Are they greater than the magicians of Egypt who counterfeited the work of God? Are they greater than the astrologers of Babylon? All these may once have been good as well as great. But when light shone from the throne of God upon them showing them His will and His truth and they refused to see the light and began to oppose the truth, they separated themselves from God and went over to the ranks of the enemy. Satan fell, and all who choose to follow their own ways contrary to the divine will, will fall with him. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 11

In the name and by the authority of the Holy Spirit, I entreat you to lay down the weapons of your warfare. Do not lightly esteem the Word of God. Do not belittle His commandments and thus please the enemy of Christ. Do not lead your children to disobedience against God and bring the blood of their souls upon you. They are Christ’s property; teach them to yield obedience to His claims. The destiny of your children will be decided by the turn which your own hands shall give to the scale. “Whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.” Luke 9:24. If you would share in the glory of Christ when He shall appear, you must share His reproach and His suffering here. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 12

It is not surprising that you find good men who the world will not acknowledge as great men, while there are many of the world’s great men who are not good men and whom the Lord does not acknowledge. We want you, my brother, to be one of Christ’s disciples, to have your name registered in the book of life. Then you will be indeed great because you are connected with the Lord of heaven. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 13

There are rich blessings for you and yours if you will comply with the conditions of God’s Word. The truth is a sanctifier. Received into the heart, it produces humiliation of soul before God. It weans the affections from the world. If indeed we have the truth, what is your position if you be found warring against it? We have not presented unto you a cunningly devised fable, but “the sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place.” 2 Peter 1:16. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 14

It is claimed that Adventist Sabbatarians are exclusive, bigoted. God forbid! We are the last to deserve this charge. We labor everywhere, the world being our field. It is the sectarians, members of the different churches to whom this charge applies. They brand us heretics because we are not sectarians. We love the souls of all for whom Christ died. We have received unpopular truth because it bears the seal of God. We labor unselfishly for those who are in error everywhere. Our prayer to God is that we may be exclusively Christ’s by partaking of His Spirit, having the pity and love which stirred His divine soul. Those who see the truth and accept it will go straight forward where the Captain of our salvation leads the way to conflict and glorious victory. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 15

Those who shun the cross and love the world, its riches and its honors, we must leave behind. Many may pity and despise us. They may sneer and ridicule, misrepresent and falsely accuse us if they choose, but our path is straight forward. Our watch-word is “Onward to victory.” Our work is to teach and defend the plain holy doctrines of the Bible. Our aim is to save the souls of men for whom Christ died, that their voices may be heard in praise and thanksgiving to Him that sitteth on the throne and to the Lamb who hath redeemed us unto God by His precious blood. Revelation 5:13. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 16

I have written to you because I felt it to be my duty. I love your soul. I want you to have courage to accept the truth as it is in Jesus. It will be for your happiness in this life and for your happiness in the future, immortal life. I urge you to take your stand with God’s commandment-keeping people. Break the fetters of Satan that would hold you back, and be not ashamed of the cross of Christ. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 17

With respect, I submit these hastily written words for your candid consideration. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 18

In haste. 3LtMs, Lt 10, 1881, par. 19