Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 4 (1883 - 1886)


Lt 3, 1883

Smith, Uriah

Healdsburg, California

July 31, 1883

Portions of this letter are published in 3SM 350-351; 8MR 64-65.

Dear Brother Smith:

I have been very, very sad to learn of Brother [C. W.] Stone’s untimely death. I feel deeply over this sad ending of his life, and I have no evidence that he was prepared. I fear he had not a spotless character. The last letter I wrote to him was very pointed. I feared if he did not heed the testimony of the Spirit of God which had appealed to him so many times, that the Lord would not protect him from Satan’s devices. The news has made my heart like lead. And a great fear comes over me that the Lord will not protect others who have so manifestly slighted His warnings. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 1

I fear for you, my brother. I have the tenderest feelings of pity and respect for you, while I know you are steadily going into darkness; and if the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness! I see the very workings of the enemy I have been shown for years would come. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 2

I had hoped to complete my last book and get it before the people that they might be warned of important events, but I shall not be able to complete the book before I go East. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 3

This makes me more earnest, more anxious, in regard to you. I know that you are under a deception, and unless you break away from William Gage and others in no better condition, the Lord will let you go with them to your certain ruin; and unless you all change your position you will be left in darkness. I know where you stand. I know your danger, and I feel the worth of your soul. I do not want you should lose your crown. I have felt reluctant to write. I know when one is in the position you are in, truth is turned to error and light to darkness. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 4

I have been waiting to see what you would do in putting in the paper something to vindicate the right. You have had ample time. I ask you, Would you, if you stood in the light, allow such statements as have been made in regard to my husband being dishonest, without correcting the matter and setting it right? Where are you, Brother Smith? Have the rebels obtained your sympathy and your confidence? Why do you not do justice by my husband’s name and reputation? And why do you keep entirely silent and let the dragon roar? For myself I care not. My peace is not disturbed, but I do care for the watchmen whom God has placed on the walls of Zion who ought to give the trumpet a certain sound. You certainly ought to do something for your own sake, for Christ’s sake, for the truth’s sake. Why do you not let the right appear? Why do you remain as silent as the dead? Is this the way you defend the truth? Have we not a right to expect something better of you than this? 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 5

You may say Sister White is stirred. I am stirred with deep sorrow for you. Well might Joshua challenge you, “Art thou for us, or for our adversaries?” Joshua 5:13. Truth will triumph. I expect these raids will be made against me till Christ comes. There is not an opposer of our faith but that makes Mrs. White his text. They begin to oppose the truth and then make a raid on me. What have I done? If evil, then let them bear witness of the evil. We have men here on this coast that are in communion with men on that end of the line—Cassidy, Swinnerton, Torr. These are active as the devil could make them. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 6

Cassidy was reproved in testimony, and his wife said it was all true of him. He said it was all true of his wife. But they began to find fault with the testimony, and after he had nearly crushed the life out of the church in Petaluma, he left them because they passed a vote of censure upon him. Since that time he has made all manner of statements accusing my husband of dishonesty. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 7

When Torr came to Petaluma, he followed close after Cassidy. Mrs. White was his theme. The Lord sent me to Petaluma and gave me a testimony of great power to bear. Torr was convicted. I stayed at his house, and he said he had seen and heard me and he was settled now that all these reports and statements were false. He felt very tender. I saw that he did not have family prayer. I urged myself forward, prayed with them and pled with them to pray morning and night with their children. He had taken the position that social meetings were not in the order of God—that family prayer was a non-essential. But his heart was melted under the power of the Spirit of God, and he urged me with tears to come and speak to them at Petaluma as often as I could. He said, “Maybe you do not know, Sister White, how we prize these visits. They are of great value to us—beyond estimate.” 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 8

Well, Long’s book came out and Green’s book—these most weak and contemptible productions. I waited for you and others to speak of these, as you stood in the responsible positions you do as watchmen on the walls of Zion and should warn the people. As editor of the paper you have every means within your reach. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 9

Now Torr has changed. He did not take up his duties. He did not follow the light. He seemed to enjoy the suggestions and statements of these tracts, and sent them everywhere. Next he was without an anchor, and he began to read Tom Paine and has come out an infidel. He says there is no personal devil—no pre-existence of Christ, no prayer is called for. He is sowing his seeds of death. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 10

Brother [W. M.] Healey has broken up his partnership with him, for he has given up the Sabbath and is running his mill upon the Sabbath. Cassidy is seen in drinking saloons on the streets in Petaluma. These are the men who are set on fire of hell to make me appear in the worst light possible; and I—what have I done? I have borne the testimony God has given me to bear, which they both had light [that it] was from God, for His Spirit witnessed to the testimony; and when they refused the light and evidence, the Spirit of the Lord left them. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 11

The time has come when if light is not cherished it leaves the one who rejects it in very dense darkness, and strong and startling developments are made quickly. Things move rapidly now. We are nearing the end. Why, I ask, is all this zeal against me? I have attended to my business given me of God. I have injured no one. I have spoken to the erring the words God has given me. Of course I could not compel them to hear. Those who had the benefit of Christ’s labors were just as enraged against Him as the enemies are against me. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 12

I have done only my duty. I have spoken because compelled to speak. They have not rejected me but Him who sent me—Him who has given me my work. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 13

But I do feel so sorry that you should be so entangled with a party who has the spirit of the dragon. I am watched; every word I write is criticized; every move I make is commented upon. I attended the Southern camp meeting and went to Los Angeles and to San Jose, and these watchers, vultures, report that I am out of Healdsburg because they had got enough of me there. The friends at Healdsburg are my warmest, kindest, and best friends—only too glad to have me with them. When I go East, I expect it will be conjectured I am obliged to leave for they made it too hot for me here. These are the words that pass from lip to lip. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 14

Now I want you to look candidly at these things. How much courage you have infused into this element and given the enemies of the truth to arise and make the raid they have on me, I cannot determine; you may never know till the judgment. I leave my work and its results until we gather about the great white throne. Do you see the Spirit of Christ in this watching, in these suspicions, in these conjectures, these suppositions? What right have they to suppose, to conjecture, to misinterpret my words, to misstate me as they do? 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 15

But there will be a class who loves just this kind of food. They are scavengers, not looking candidly to see what good my writings and my testimonies have done, but like Satan, the accuser of the brethren, [they are] looking to see what evil they can find, what mischief they can work, what word they can twist and put their wicked construction upon to make me a false prophet. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 16

Do you train in this company or are you noncommittal—standing on neutral ground? Do you love these men who are tearing and devouring the flock and unsettling the faith of our brethren and sending them adrift, and using your name and influence to do this baleful work? Do you hear the voice of God speaking through them? Do you discover precious fruit that they bear? I see the same satanic spirit, only more plainly developed, that has been manifested the past forty years. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 17

The Lord has given me words of reproof for William Gage. It was truth but he would not accept it. You have made this man your counselor. You linked up with one whose course of life has not been devoted or spiritual; in short, who never has known what the influence of the Spirit of God was upon the heart. And I warned you, because the Lord bade me do this. But you refused to hear—not my words but the Lord’s words. You have chosen your way, and as the result you are in darkness. I know this to be the case. I sense your peril; I warn you again. Turn ye, turn ye, for why will ye die? Will you give sanction to the enemy? Will you prove an unfaithful sentinel and let the enemy into the camp? Will you prove untrue, or will you show yourself to be a man of God, fully on the Lord’s side? 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 18

Suppose you and William Gage and the Marion party and Green and McLearn all unite your best efforts in seeking to make my testimonies of none effect. Suppose you try to make the people believe them to be untrue, and you do tear them out of the hearts of the people. What have you gained? What great good have you achieved? Will the people be more zealous, more circumspect? Will they be less worldly-minded? Will they be less licentious? Will they be more earnest in the faith? 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 19

You have seen the result of those who have tried this. You see that God has connected the testimonies with the work from its very rise. Tear them from the work and you tear the faith of God’s people to pieces. Do you want to meet your work in the judgment? You may all do your utmost, and you will not prevail. If this work be of God, it will live and survive all the raids, all the Korah, Dathan, and Abiram disaffections, all the Jannes and Jambres assaults and resistance and apostasies. I grieve that such men as you give themselves to this work of the devil; that you should be found giving encouragement to this satanic dragon- spirit is too sad for me to contemplate. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 20

I believe you will wrench yourself from this snare of Satan. But oh, for Christ’s sake, cut loose from William Gage! Not that I think his case hopeless, but I know you darken counsel by words; you strengthen one another, for God has shown this to me. He is to you an agent of Satan. He has led your mind in a channel of doubt. He is at work under the cover and disguise. He has influenced you. You will deny this, but that makes no difference. That which the Lord has shown me I know is correct. You are in darkness and you and he are not light-bearers now in the office. Your influence is for evil. You are scattering from Christ and from the truth. Remember it is all written in the book, and you will meet the record of all these started doubts, this unbelief which is having a demoralizing influence in the office and everywhere, in a harvest you will not care to reap. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 21

I wish you would come to the camp meetings. I know that it would be a blessing to you. If you follow the pattern you have started upon, you are as surely separating from God as others who have pursued the same course; but you are so blinded you cannot see it. Jesus loves you! All heaven is interested in your welfare. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 22

You say you were willing Milton should come out to California where he would have a better opportunity to start again and take up Christian duties. Just as long as you remain where you are there is no hope for Milton. When his father comes to the light and takes his position squarely on the right side, then I have not a doubt but your son will have a strength to take his stand. But until this is done, I have no hope that anything we can do will move him. He knows just where you stand, and he is waiting to see what course his father is going to take. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 23

Never was Satan working with greater zeal than now. He is an accuser of the brethren. He deludes. He casts his bewitching power upon minds and they seem mesmerized. Oh, that you could see! Oh, that you could understand and make your way at once to the light! 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 24

I feel an intense interest for you, that Satan shall not triumph over you. I want you to triumph over Satan. Oh, now break the fetters of the enemy. I tell you, in the fear of God, you are in imminent danger. You are preparing for yourself a harvest that you will not wish to reap. I want to say there is not a shade of dishonor that should rest upon my husband’s name, and you know it. He scorned to do a dishonest action. Lies may be sent afloat, now that he is dead, and you may stand by and see his name covered with reproach and blackness and make no effort to vindicate him who stood by your side for more than a score of years. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 25

Is this as Christ would have it? You know that my husband was strictly, conscientiously honest. You certainly know this; then why do you keep silent and let the vultures tear his reputation to pieces, when you stand as editor of the Review, and have every means in your hands to vindicate his honor against the insinuations and the suggestions of these satanic agents? You could show a remarkable zeal to defend McLearn—of whose reputation you knew nothing—one who had done nothing for the cause of God and had made no sacrifices for the truth. But when my husband’s lips are palsied by death, when he cannot answer for himself, when his brethren should vindicate his character, you are voiceless; you have nothing to say. Why cannot you speak, you who were associated with him in his work? Why do such men as Green and McLearn enlist your sympathy, unless the bewitching power of Satan through these agents has so bewildered you that you cannot discern between righteousness and truth, and error and deception? 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 26

I present this sharply as it is. I already have about one hundred pages prepared, and if no one moves, I shall do my duty and leave you to answer to God for the neglect of yours. Do you know, my dear brother, that the Lord wanted to save you from the very position you are in today, and that is the reason He sent you warnings and reproofs? The great light you have had, and the experience you have had in the work only make Satan more determined to delude and ensnare you and then drive you where he will. He knows that many love you and have confidence in you and will be brought into great perplexity and doubt and may, through your example, make shipwreck of faith. This is why I was so burdened. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 27

The Lord gave me no rest day nor night until I wrote you at Battle Creek the warnings which you would not accept; that Gage treated in the frivolous, irreverent manner he did, which cast off all its solemn influence on many minds. And these very men, McLearn and Green, would never have ventured as they have but for the influence of William Gage and yourself. William Gage has worked under cover, in disguise. He is not a man who has ever had the fear of God strongly before him. And when you linked with him, you separated from God. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 28

We have had several rebellions—Stephenson and Hall; Brinkerhoff and Snook and Carver—and now we have another of like character doing precisely as his former brethren have done. And we shall have just such disaffection to meet, just such rebellion, until the close of time. Some will go with these elements who have had great light and rich experiences, but who, because they did not follow the light, came to follow darkness and perished. I cannot endure the thought that Satan will succeed in overcoming you. The end is near. Will you break this power that has held you spellbound? Will you recover yourself out of the snare of Satan? Will you fall upon the Rock, Christ Jesus, and be broken? You must consider your position. You must change your course of action for you are separating farther and farther from God. God calls you to come up on higher and holier ground. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 29

When you bind yourself in holy covenant to God, you will separate from idols and things unclean. The light you have had, the blessings you have received, the high and holy calling you have had, all forbid that you should be in your present position, in bondage to unholy, unsanctified elements of the world or in friendship with the enemies of God. You are required to come out, to be separate and to maintain a holy character as a son of God. When you obey God you will have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness. I feel deeply in earnest. I again appeal to you to take your stand on the side of Christ and humiliate your soul and disappoint the enemy. The people now who believe must know where you stand—what side you are on. Sacred obligations are resting upon you. How will you meet these claims? Again I entreat, break the chains of Satan. Be again a free man. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 30

In love. 4LtMs, Lt 3, 1883, par. 31