Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 3 (1876 - 1882)

308/473

Lt 6, 1880

Cornell, M. E.

NP

September 28, 1880

Portions of this letter are published in TSB 172-182; CTr 148.

Dear Sir:

I have been troubled exceedingly in regard to your case, and yet have not known what to say to you. I was very reluctant to say a word to discourage you, for I know what terrible sadness discouragement brings to the soul. I thought when your credentials were not renewed you would quietly settle down and be willing to be retired, that you would know if it was among the possibilities consistent with reason and religion in the great need we are of laborers, you would have received credentials. I could not use my influence in favor of this. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 1

In the last vision given me, the great white throne was presented before me, with the Judge of all the earth to pass sentence upon the congregated multitude. The ledger of heaven was opened and those about the throne were judged according to the deeds done in the body. Your name was registered as weighed in the balance and found wanting. Your name was registered as a transgressor of the commandments of God. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 2

God in His great mercy gave you opportunity to redeem the past. When you had shown repentance He pitied you. You had sown your seeds of licentiousness broadcast. God gave to me a dream which had the influence upon my mind to make another effort for you. You were placed in a good field of labor, and had you conducted yourself as a Christian should, you might then have had that repentance that needeth not to be repented of. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 3

You were, for a time, humble and thankful, but your heart had so long been given up to perversity and to self-indulgence that you could not see and sense your past course as so very offensive to God. Like Peter, you had been faithfully warned of your danger and of your defection of character, but you were self-confident and became jealous and acted like a spoiled child. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 4

You and your wife were being tested, proved of God as far as your public labor amongst us in this work and in this Cause are concerned. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 5

Your feelings, your talkative spirit, your envy, your jealousy, and your hatred, were helped on by your relatives who came from Texas. Their perverted statements affected you. An unsanctified harmony existed between you. Little did they know what they were doing. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 6

After God had borne so long with your perversity, while you were professing to be a shepherd of the flock, you were granted another trial in answer to our sorrowful petitions in your behalf. The Lord opened the way before you. We felt very sad for you; and when we saw how the matter resulted, we felt worse than before. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 7

I was shown that your labors as a minister would be no longer accepted of God. Your moral sense is in no way strengthened by your last test and trial. You did not take and keep the position of a penitent man, humbling yourself daily before God, under a sense of His great mercy and your sinfulness. God does not connect with you. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 8

Contrition and prayer should have been your attitude; and if you had preserved this penitential position you would not be where you now are, unfit to be entrusted with the solemn work of laboring for souls, jealous, surmising evil, selfish, and uncourteous. You and your wife are an offense to God. It was your privilege to place yourselves where God could have worked through you, but you did not do this. You had not a love for the study of the Word. You had no love for prayer. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 9

You did not take a humble position as did David in view of his sin. After the commission of that great crime of his life, his entire character deteriorated. That crime recoiled terribly upon him. He was bearing a conscious sense of guilt. He felt that he had forfeited the love and loyalty of his subjects. He was weakened physically and morally. He lost his own self-respect and self-confidence. He scarcely dared trust his old and formerly tried advisers. Humbled and mournful was the procession that took that precipitate flight from his throne across the mount. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 10

But David was never more worthy of admiration than in his hour of adversity. Never was this cedar of God truly greater than when wrestling with the storm and tempest. He was a man of the keenest temperament, which might have been raised to the strongest feelings of resentment. He was cut to the quick with the imputation of unmerited wrong. Reproach, he tells us, had broken his heart. And it would not have been surprising if, stung to madness, he had given vent to his feelings of uncontrollable irritation, to bursts of vehement rage, and expressions of revenge. But there was nothing of this which would naturally be expected of a man with his stamp of character. With spirits broken and in tearful emotion, but without one expression of repining, he turns his back upon the scenes of his glory and also of his crime, and pursues his flight for his life. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 11

Shimei comes forth as David passes, and with a storm of curses, hurls against him invectives, throwing stones and dirt. Said one of David’s faithful men, “I pray thee let me go over and take off his head.” David in his sorrow and humility says, “Let him curse, because the Lord hath said unto him, Curse David.” “Behold, my son, which came forth of my bowels, seeketh my life.” 2 Samuel 16:10, 11. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 12

In David is seen the saint of God. His fine and deep sense of feeling is not blunted. He senses his sin most keenly. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 13

When the march of the procession is arrested by Zadok and Abiathar with the Levites who come bearing the ark of God, the symbol of God’s presence, David for a moment sees the star of hope amid the clouds, for with this precious token with him, he may greatly improve his situation. Should he take advantage of this, the glory and symbol of Israel’s strength, he could rally the whole host of Israel around him and win back the disaffected ones, for with it the glory departed from Israel. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 14

But how unselfish, how noble, is the man David! In his overwhelming affliction, David’s resolution is taken. He, like the tall cedar of Lebanon, looks toward heaven. The royal command is, “Carry back the ark of God into the city.” What firm and disinterested motives dictate this decision! Did not he cherish the feelings that the holy ark would be as a charm to preserve his kingly honor or his life? His reverence and respect for the ark of God would not allow him to consent that it should be imperiled by his vicissitudes in his hasty flight. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 15

David had so high a sense of right and of sacred things that he did not feel that kings or priests had a right to propose to remove the ark from the place of its rest without a divine command to do so. To rob the city of that symbol which gives it the name of the “Mount of Holiness,” he could not consent. Had he possessed selfish motives and a high opinion of himself, he would gladly have gathered everything which would build up his sinking fortunes and give him power to secure his safety. But he sends back to its place the sacred chest and will make no advancement until he sees the priests returning with the hallowed burden, to place it in the tabernacle of Zion. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 16

If he had looked upon his humiliation as merely the work of man’s device, and thought that the providence of God had nothing to do with it, he might have welcomed the ark. But he viewed the matter in altogether a different light. David believed it was the Lord. “If I shall find favor in the eyes of the Lord, he will bring me again, and show me both it, and his habitation; but if he thus say, I have no delight in thee; behold, here am I, let him do to me as seemeth good unto him.” 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 17

The voice of conscience, more terrible than Shimei was bringing his sins to his mind. Uriah was continually before his eyes. His great crime was the sin of adultery. Then to conceal his crime he planned the greater one of placing Uriah in the forefront of the battle, where he knew he would be slain. Although he did not with his own hand kill Uriah, he knew that the guilt of his death rested upon him. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 18

The faithful Nathan had pronounced the judgment of God. The sword was never to leave his [David’s] house; that which he had sown he was also to reap. He had often had a gloomy presentiment of the present hour. He had long wondered why the merited judgment was so long delayed. The God he had offended by bringing so great sin upon Israel as their leader, was now showing him that He is not a God that will lie, and that by terrible things in righteousness would He show His hatred of sin. He did indeed realize, “Be sure your sin will find you out.” 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 19

But David showed the fine gold of his character under adversity and while suffering the retributive justice of God, in refusing to be avenged on Shimei, and in refusing to stoop to strategy or the arts of base expediency to gain his honor and his kingdom. He refuses to accept the ark in any underhanded way. He looked upon his sackcloth, the habiliments of his humiliation, his naked feet, and refused to do wrong that good might come to him. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 20

He recalled how ofttimes God had worked for him, and thought, “If He accepts my repentance, He may yet give me His favor and turn my mourning to joy. He may remove my sackcloth and give me the garment of goodness. On the other hand, if He has no delight in me, if He has forgotten me, if He will leave me to exile or to perish, I will not murmur. I deserve His judgments and will submit to it all. I will bear the indignation of the Lord, because I have sinned against Him, until He plead my cause and execute judgment for me.” 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 21

Oh, what a wonderful change for David! From his throne and kingdom he is fleeing into a barren dry land with no water. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 22

I bring before you this lesson that you may see the contrast between your course under the reproof and displeasure of God, and the course pursued by David. You have ever been ready to charge your discomfitures to somebody prejudiced against you. Instead of seeing that no one can have too strong feelings against a man professing to be a shepherd of the flock, who will corrupt the minds of the unsuspecting, you act as though you were a martyr suffering unjustly—a persecuted man who deserves the sympathy of the people. You have not a proper sense of sin. You are not right before God in motive or spirit. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 23

Your sins have been often set before you. You continued in sin while the reproofs and warnings of God were fresh before you. How can those who are accustomed to do evil learn to do well? You professed to accept the testimonies, and at the very time, while occupying the sacred desk, you were evil, corrupt, planning some scheme to lead away souls. The plan of your impure advances was often concocted in the desk, while individuals were selected in your mind to work your hellish devices upon. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 24

You have again and again feigned sickness and aroused the sympathies and anxious fears of those who believed Brother [M. E.] Cornell was a dear servant of Jesus Christ. They thought that they could not do too much for him to relieve him in his supposed suffering. Thus you have brought the sisters in close connection with your person. Thus the minister of the flock of God has led His sheep away from the fold into the path of perdition. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 25

Your impure mind has been imparting its burdened, foul waters to the minds of those who had not heretofore had a suspicion of evil of you. Some of these cases you have made prostitutes. Their first lesson in licentiousness was taught by you, and their feet have taken hold on hell and remained in the path of destruction (Proverbs 5:5), where you first lured them on. And there have been those who have corrupted their ways before God, the poor lost sheep you have professedly sought to be laboring to bring back to the fold, and have sanctified their sins by uniting with them in defiling, disgusting iniquity. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 26

Your mind has so long been given to this corrupting channel, and your deeds been concealed, that you thought it was a light thing to deceive and pursue a course of licentiousness. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 27

But as I have presented this matter before you in conversation and in letter, I will not employ the little time now in presenting the horrible picture before your spiritually blind eyes and seared conscience. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 28

After you changed your location to Texas and had shown by confessing some things that you were sorry for your sins, your course was not what the course of a penitent man should be. You felt aggrieved that you were assailed and your name reproached. You sympathized with yourself in this matter, and then settled back in a state of helpless backsliding. Your example and your influence was not that of a penitent man. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 29

Meanwhile, we felt sad indeed on your account and that of your wife. Both of you have had great light and great privileges, and both gave yourselves into the enemy’s hands while in the midst of light and opportunities and privileges. But we felt deep sorrow for you. We placed ourselves in your place and made the case our own. To have once taken an active part in the cause and then be set aside, having no part in it, seemed so terrible. We thought you had repented. We prayed for you very earnestly, and in a dream your case was presented before me. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 30

I dreamed that although you were wholly unworthy, God would give you another trial. At once we made what efforts we could to get you to Colorado. We knew we were doing this in direct opposition to leading brethren who knew your case. We took the responsibility upon ourselves. We told you this. When the vision was given me two years ago, some things were shown me in regard to your dangers, which I faithfully wrote to you, informing you what course you must pursue. At the same time, I pled most earnestly with you not to make a failure this time, that now was your time, now your day of opportunity; if you failed here it would be disastrous to you. I wrote private letters and I urged upon you what you must do and the earnest efforts you must put forth. Read Testimony #28. [See Testimonies for the Church 3:306-383.] 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 31

When in Colorado one year ago, your course grieved me, not from any personal difference, but I saw that you were not doing as God had told you you must do. My heart sank within me. I gave you a warning, but you did not heed it. I knew then, as I know now, that you were making a failure. I had had your course marked out plainly in regard to the fruit we could see in you if you would sense your state and improve this last trial. I could not see how I could help your case. You were going in every respect directly contrary to the will of God, expressed to you so plainly. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 32

At Battle Creek, in December, the Lord gave me a most solemn vision. I was then shown your case. You had failed in your last trial on the points plainly expressed to you. When you went to Colorado you had an excellent field, an excellent home; and oh, so much better privileges than some of our brethren have. You were familiar with the truth which you presented to the people and some responded to it. You were humble at first, but your success would have been very small had not the Lord given me a testimony for the people in Boulder. The Lord spoke through me. I take no credit to myself. God made the Word powerful to convict and to convert. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 33

You continued to labor but you began to think that you were really quite an acquisition to the cause and resented everything that did not look as though your efforts were appreciated. Very early you began to complain and express your dissatisfaction. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 34

The interest of the cause of God in Colorado pressed upon our souls, and we sent you help in Elder Corliss. I have been shown that from the first you looked upon this move with disfavor. Yourself and your wife seemed to regard him as an intruder, as though undermining you. Your envious, selfish feelings were roused and cherished. Your course toward him was not the course you would wish to have pursued toward you. You began to act out your natural feelings and to follow the course of a balky horse. Your unreasonableness strengthened. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 35

When your brother James and his family came, their story in regard to Elder Corliss, my husband and others on the journey, was received by you. These statements were false. They will meet them in the judgment. This temptation to find fault with Elder Corliss and others, my husband in particular, was too much for you, with your present sore feelings and perverse nature, to endure quietly. You became reckless and unthankful for this last chance, and wholly forfeited your privilege. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 36

When we tried to set things in order, you were not one to humble yourself as did David. Contrast your feelings and your sense of sin with his repentance and humiliation. Your influence was on the side of envy. You were as a man in a maze. You began to recount what great good you had done, to reckon up those who had embraced the truth since you came to Colorado as your sheaves, when had it not been for publications and other influences aside from yours, there would have been but very few that would have balanced on the side of truth. You claim too much. You estimate your labor too highly. You do not see nor sense your inefficiency as far as exerting an influence to bring the people nearer to God and to deep and earnest piety. Suffice it to say, all you needed was the atmosphere of distrust, suspicion, faultfinding, and murmuring against others to be breathed upon you in order to set your unsanctified nature to work. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 37

I was shown that you utterly failed to stand the proving of God, and developed traits of character unfitting you to be entrusted with any responsibility connected with the work of God. God has no more use for you. He will not use you. Your weak moral powers were made so through your years of ministerial labor while you were corrupting your ways before God and destroying by polluting the souls of others. Had you felt humbled, as did David, had you earnestly felt distrustful of yourself and heeded the words of counsel to seek the Lord as your helper, confessing your sins and repenting before God as did David, you would have shown a becoming sense of your great crimes which called for a repentance which needeth not to be repented of. God gave you a chance to prove whether you had a sense of your sins or not. He tendered to you encouragements which you did not deserve. You will never have them again. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 38

There will be those who will solicit you to labor among them and you may, in your unsanctified heart, flatter yourself that this is in your favor and that you are of value. But do you suppose for a moment if they could read your heart or have opened before them your past course of wickedness, they would be eager for your labors? It is because they have not a knowledge of your course and what long forbearance the people of God have exercised toward you. They know not how aggravating has been your case, how many testimonies of warning have been given you, all of which have been unheeded. Should they know the matters as they are, they would give no encouragement to your preaching. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 39

You have confused and bewildered the minds of Myron and Cornelia. They would sympathize with and defend you, but it will be at the peril of their own souls. Their union with you will be on an unsanctified basis. But you have had unsanctified and uninspired sympathy and encouragement from your relatives. They are awakening the displeasure of God against themselves because they do not elevate the standard of piety and godliness. Their hearts are becoming perverse and unsanctified. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 40

The fruits of repentance are seen in the example of David. He learned the lesson of resignation under affliction, patience under injuries, and of humble, child-like reliance upon God. In your discouraged, dark condition you should have both commenced as young converts, seeking to have no will nor way of your own, no surmising nor judging of the motives of others, and leaving forever the long fretting, complaining years of the past. Many who see not as God seeth, but view matters from man’s standpoint, might reason that with David there might have been excuse for repining, and that the sincerity of his repentance years before might have excepted him from present judgment. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 41

David might have thought so himself. He might have said, “I have for a long time been obedient and this should offset against my disobedience. It is hard for me in my old age to meet this sweeping blast. My life generally has been a life of faithful discharge of duty as God’s honored servant, the king of Israel, the singer of His church. It is hard now to hang my harp upon the willow and remain tuneless and become a wandering exile. My own son seeketh my life.” 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 42

But David makes no excuse. Justice points to the broken tablets of the broken law and draws the sword against the transgressor. All apologies or excuses for sin are of no value with God. The sentiment of the soul of David was, who shall testify to lessen the guilt of the sinner when God testifies against him? God’s verdict, “Guilty,” has gone forth and man cannot erase it. Cursed is the man who continueth not in all things written in the book of the law, to do them. David utters no complaint. The most eloquent psalm he ever sang was when he was climbing Mount Olivet, weeping and barefooted, yet humbled in spirit, unselfish and generous, submissive and resigned. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 43

The royal fugitive does not render evil for evil or railing for railing. He does not harbor revengeful feelings in his heart, but amid his own woes he is kind, noble, and sympathetic. Oh, what a marked contrast has been your course! David bore the fruit of true penitence. You have shown no such fruit. God has borne with you long. He connected you with Himself, giving you opportunity to learn of Him. He did not connect you with Himself because you were a man of weak morals, harsh, impatient, overbearing, childish, exacting, and defective in many respects. His work needed no such element as these characteristics of the devil to advance it. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 44

There can be no excuse for a rough, coarse, uncourteous, unkind spirit exercised in the work of God. Whatever may be the circumstances, whatever may be the pressure, a calm, even, kind, forbearing spirit goes through rough work better than a stormy, furious one. God did use in the great work of reform some hasty, overbearing, fretting, passionate men. He did not use them because they were so, but notwithstanding these faults, He connected them with Himself that they should learn of Him, the Exampler, and be partakers of His spirit, thereby becoming disgusted with their own defects. God could have used these great reformers with tenfold more power had they been converted to a mild, humble and forbearing spirit. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 45

Sin may be met with the strongest denunciations, giving no indulgence to falsehood or impurity. Whatever is dishonoring to God may be earnestly rebuked, be it in the rich, those in responsible positions, or the more lowly; but the character must be marked with a kind, tender, and thoughtful spirit—a spirit which is self-forgetful, thinketh no evil, hopeth all things, believeth all things. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 46

If men who have been connected with God for years show no marked changes in their character, but like Judas become more confirmed in their marked objectionable features of character, still professing to be keeping the law of God, and are very particular in some points but neglect the weightier matters, the mercy and love of God, they will be given up to their own corrupt natures, as was Judas. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 47

You have had every opportunity, every privilege, every advantage, but you have not improved them. When you came to Colorado, had you both sought God like young converts, studied your Bibles, walked humbly with God, prayed earnestly and watched thereunto, you would have shown that you prized the boon of eternal life. But you would not appreciate heaven. Although you have, on account of your sins, been most terribly threatened of God and warned for years of His punishment, which is sure to come for transgression, yet all the time you have been grieving the Saviour. He has made you the object of His unwearied love and tender solicitude. He and all Heaven have been ashamed of you and looked upon your course with loathing. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 48

When the husbandman sows corn he reaps corn. If he sows wheat he reaps wheat. If he sows poisonous seeds he will have the same to harvest. Thus with yourself as a responsible agent. If you sow to the flesh, you will of the flesh reap corruption. If you sow licentiousness, you will reap that which you have sown. The seed sown produces its kind. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 49

The reckless habits of your youth, which have been cherished even while your hair is sprinkled with the frosts of mature years, will be felt upon your physical, mental and moral powers. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 50

God saw in Pharaoh a stubborn, rebellious subject and He poured upon him additional light. This light can be accepted and do its work on the heart, or it is in the power of the individual to resist the light, to reject the evidences of God’s power, and become more confirmed in his sin and rebellion. Thus it was in the case of Pharaoh. Thus it has been with you. You have been reproved, counseled, and entreated, but in the face of light and warning have followed the promptings of your unsanctified heart until the Lord will remove the agency of His Spirit. You resist His Spirit in not being corrected by it, and this helps you to further resistance. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 51

He who did not correct his way when once warned, will have less difficulty in resisting the second warning, and less the third, and still less the fourth. The single grain of the first resistance being sown produces a harvest of resistances. When in your youth you indulged yourself in the first sin of licentiousness and impurity, you placed yourself where you would be more easily overcome by the second temptation, and the more readily prepared to yield the third time, and the fourth time you will invite temptation. This is a harvest of sinful indulgences produced from the one grain of seed in the first indulgence. The Lord would have done a good work for you had you felt your need and made God your helper. Your minds were both corrupted and you needed to be sanctified, cleansed and purified in mind and thought. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 52

God gave you another trial. Oh, that you could have appreciated it, and offered earnest, heartfelt prayer with true penitence and living faith to grasp the precious promise. Had you with willing heart practiced self-denial, resisted temptation, there would have been increased strength with every effort to overcome self. Every new achievement of principle will smooth the way of achievements of the same kind, the fruit of every moral victory. This victory is the seed sown which produces its kind, placing the sower on higher ground for every triumph of righteousness gained. Every virtuous action strengthens the spiritual sinews for new virtue, and every vice repeated rivets the fetters of vice. There is a growing strength in habit, and by it every action makes way for repetition. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 53

God does not trust you. Had you put away your murmuring, your fretting, your boyish, unmanly littleness of mind and made thorough work of repentance, you would have endured the test; but now you are weighed in the balance and found wanting. God will never trust the flock to your charge. Your mind is low, sensual, devilish. If you can save your own soul by a humble, penitent life, that is the greatest work you can do. God is merciful, but you should not attempt to teach others. You have lost the power of God to teach. Your work is not acceptable to God. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 54

It is alarming how rapidly the sin of licentiousness is coming in among us. While writing out these individual, personal testimonies, your case was urged upon me with great power in the night season, and I cannot forbear writing to you. My soul is burdened day and night for the Israel of God. They do not feel the need of deep searching of the heart, of afflicting their souls before God, any more than you did. Their hearts are not in harmony with the Word of God and therefore they neglect to search its pages. Their hearts are not in harmony with Jesus, therefore they feel it a punishment to approach Him in prayer. Their conscience condemns them. Any busy activity is preferable to the self-examination which they must have. The comprehensive requirement of God’s Word is that we should be like Him, that we should represent in our life the life and character of our holy Pattern. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 55

The transforming power of God in the renewing of the mind by the Holy Ghost produces a new creature. If, after a man professes Christ, he manifests fretfulness, peevishness, faultfinding, envy, evil surmisings, jealousy, impure thoughts, that man has exactly the same character he exhibits. Every rough and uncomely trait is the revelation of the Satanic rather than the divine. Satan exults that he has power over the mind, the affections, and the character. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 56

I hoped that you would be of sufficient understanding to know when no credentials were given you that you should keep humble and retired. You might have known that it was my words that had to be spoken in answer to questions put directly, that settled the matter in regard to your receiving credentials. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 57

But when I see your reports in the paper my heart is sad. No such reports should enter the columns of our paper. How do those whom you have sought to ruin look upon these reports? How do those in California regard them? It is because the fine perception is dimmed in those in charge of the paper that any of your reports find access to its columns. The high standard of truth and purity is lowered. Your spirit of independence and self-esteem shown since the Conference at Battle Creek is anything but the spirit you would have could you discern yourself and have a true sense of sin. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 58

On this journey I have had to rebuke no less than four cases similar to yours. Men professing godliness set themselves to working evil and under the cloak of religion carry a high hand and a brazen front against the Lord of Hosts. When reproved, they will say, “It is my nature; it is my way; you must not think hard of me.” Truly it is his way, for God has nothing to do with the exhibition of such ways. These men are working on Satan’s side—are sowing iniquity to reap destruction. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 59

Every indulgence of lustful passions, and all the misdoings in minor or more criminal matters, are to bring upon him the punishment he deserves. Jeremiah speaks of some men as wise to do evil (Jeremiah 4:22), cunning, using their God-given abilities to plan and execute their purposes in a most artful manner so as to be successful in their evil purposes and yet hide their sins from human eyes. Their continual enslavement to sin is filling for them the clouds of vengeance, which will fall without mixture of mercy. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 60

Very many professedly Christian men are sowing to the flesh by pampering lust. With some it reaches only themselves, while with others it pollutes their associates. We are sowing now and the reaping time is soon to come. Everyone is either sowing to the flesh or to the spirit. We must take the sickle and gather what we have sown. The fallow ground of the heart needs to be broken up. We each have to deal with a stubborn soil. The heart of stone must be broken into cultivation. They that sow with tears will reap with joy (Psalm 126:5). There must be a purifying of the soul’s temple. There must be an elevating of the standard of religion among us as a people. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 61

What shall I say to impress our people to awaken from our carnal security and stand like faithful sentinels against all iniquity? There are so many who ease their conscience with the thought which Satan suggested in words to Eve: “Ye shall not surely die.” Genesis 3:4. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 62

Sinners would never practice iniquity as they do if they did not flatter themselves that the sword of justice will never be raised against them. Is God a God of justice? Is it true that He will visit the workers of iniquity with His retributive judgments? How can we make the sinners in Zion take this for verity and truth? 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 63

We must make it true as it is in Jesus. We exalt the cross to the view of all. We entreat you to go to Mount Calvary and see upon the cruel cross Him who thought it not robbery to be equal with God. Look upon the Victim hanging there in humiliation as a criminal. Intense must have been the work of execution, done so thoroughly, showing that when God takes in His hand the sword of justice, He makes thorough work. His hatred of sin is so great that before the transgressor could be received into favor, the eternal Son of God interposed Himself and bore the bolts of the Father’s wrath deserved by the sinner. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 64

We would banish from the mind of the sinner the slightest hope. If any of the sons of Adam transgress one precept of Jehovah, and continue in transgression, making trial for themselves of the justice of the Almighty, they will find justice as severe and thorough in execution as in words of threatening. He will have dealt out to him as unsparingly the vials of Jehovah’s wrath as is expressed in the threatenings of the Word of God. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 65

Look on the cross. Look at the sufferings of God’s dear Son, and no longer question whether God means as He says—that He will punish sin to its fullest extent if it is not repented of and forsaken. Christ died to demonstrate that all who are not healed of their transgression by faith in the agony and blood, and become pure even as He is pure, will receive punishment for his sins even as Jesus has suffered. Great was the physical anguish which He suffered as the spikes were driven through His hands and His feet; but small is the pain in comparison with the burden of the sins of the whole world. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 66

Did God remit the penalty in behalf of His darling Son? Divinity clothed in humanity was dying beneath the wrath of an offended God. Were any of the vials of God’s wrath reserved from falling on the head of our Substitute and Surety? Realize the agonies of the divine Son of God in Gethsemane and the horrors of darkness enshrouding His divine soul and forcing the blood drops from His pores. In the inexpressible horrors of thick darkness which enshrouded the cross, the earth quaked, the rocks rent—the earth reeled at the spectacle of its divine Author’s agony. Angels were confounded and seemed to suffer with their adorable Master. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 67

Was not this demonstration convincing of the sure justice of God? The Innocent was suffering for the guilty; the Just for the unjust. 3LtMs, Lt 6, 1880, par. 68