Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 4 (1883 - 1886)


Ms 29a, 1885

Report of a Meeting in Torre Pellice

[Torre Pellice, Italy]

November 28, 1885

Previously unpublished.

Report of a Meeting in Torre Pellice on November 28, 1885 4LtMs, Ms 29a, 1885, par. 1

Mr. Mallon says: “In a meeting held in the afternoon of the 28th of November, 1885, at Torre Pellice, at the end of a discourse in favor of the Sabbath, given in English by Mrs. White of America, and translated by Mr. A. C. Bourdeau, a Sabbatarian pastor, [we] arose in the assembly composed of thirty persons, to ask of the speaker, Is the Sabbath necessary to my salvation? The response was at first evasive; but as we insisted, she became affirmative, then negative, as follows: ‘If the Christian is persuaded that he ought to keep the Sabbath, the Sabbath is necessary to his salvation.’ 4LtMs, Ms 29a, 1885, par. 2

“The evasive response made a bad impression upon us, because the person interrogated, having grown old in Sabbatarianism, should have known positively and promptly what she held, touching the subject of our question. The negative response compels us to believe that it is useless to take so much trouble to preach the Sabbath to those who do not know it, if they can be saved just the same.” 4LtMs, Ms 29a, 1885, par. 3

We do not say that Mr. Mallon wilfully misrepresents my words, but he has certainly done this. 4LtMs, Ms 29a, 1885, par. 4

While at Torre Pellice, November 28th, I spoke in the hall where our people assembled for worship. It was Sabbath forenoon. I had spoken some little time when Mr. Mallon came in. After sitting quietly and listening a while, he arose in the midst of my discourse and broke in upon me with the remark, “Is it necessary for me to keep the Sabbath in order to be saved? Answer yes or no.” I answered promptly that this was an important question which demanded something more full than yes or no; that everyone will be judged according to the measure of light which he received. If God gave them light upon the Sabbath and they refused to accept it, they would not be saved in rejecting light given them from His Word. I then quoted the words of Christ to the Pharisees: “If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloke for their sin.” John 15:22. 4LtMs, Ms 29a, 1885, par. 5

Mr. Mallon broke in upon me and in a very excited manner talked very rapidly, giving no opportunity for his remarks to be interpreted. I attempted several times to speak, as he placed before me questions to answer, but he gave me no chance to speak. He stated that Christ broke the Sabbath. I said, “I hope our brother will not place himself with the Pharisees in their accusations against Christ; for if they could have sustained the charge of Sabbath-breaking against Jesus, they would not have been under the necessity of hiring false witnesses to testify against Him.” 4LtMs, Ms 29a, 1885, par. 6

He became very excited at my words, charging me with calling him a Pharisee, but our Brethren Whitney and Bourdeau were present and corrected his statement, and he said, “I beg pardon.” Mr. Mallon repeated this statement very much as he has it published in his pamphlet, but Brother Bourdeau corrected him and told him I made no such remark, but he urged that I did. Then Brother Bourdeau repeated the words I have here stated in regard to being judged according to the light given to every individual of God. Sister Mallon was present and stated that my words were not as he had stated them. I asked her after the meeting if I had given any occasion for my words to be thus misconstrued. She stated that my words were plain and clear, and there was no occasion for misconstruing them. But they appear in print as he wanted them to appear. 4LtMs, Ms 29a, 1885, par. 7

When I saw that I could not have any opportunity to finish my discourse or to answer the questions as I would be pleased to do, I told him, “You have asked me questions, and when I attempt to answer them, you arise in a most excited manner and begin to talk and give me no chance.” That since it was not possible for him to listen calmly and know anything I said, I would answer his question in writing. I did so. 4LtMs, Ms 29a, 1885, par. 8