Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 4 (1883 - 1886)


Lt 38, 1886

White, J. E.; White, Emma

Basel, Switzerland

March 28, 1886

Portions of this letter are published in EGWE 172-173.

Dear Children Edson and Emma:

I sent you a letter from Lausanne, but I thought I would write you again. I was able to speak to the people in Basel last Sabbath with freedom. 4LtMs, Lt 38, 1886, par. 1

As we journeyed from Geneva to Basel, we passed through large and small cities; and my meditations were, How are these people in these large cities to be warned? In the vision of John, four mighty angels were shown him as holding the four winds, that they should not blow upon the earth until God’s servants are sealed in their foreheads. [Revelation 7:1-3.] When this work is done, then the ministers of vengeance are called and commanded to pour upon the earth tempests, thunders, pestilences, calamities. Now then is the time to work when Jesus is interceding in the heavenly sanctuary. Now is our opportunity and privilege to be co-workers with God. 4LtMs, Lt 38, 1886, par. 2

The law of duty is supreme. It claims authority over reason, over conscience, over talents, over business, over every capacity of man. Everything that is noble in man belongs to the service of God. He admits no rival in anything. He makes no abatement of His demands. God enters into no compromise with men for a divided heart. The voice of duty is the voice of God to win souls. Obedience to its claims brings us into living personal relation with God. It makes us channels of light, and the humblest service will be an honor, for it is the great plan of God to associate men with His plans and His purposes. In the work of duty we go out of ourselves and beyond ourselves, and we may lay upon the foundation gold, silver, and precious stones. We are not excusable if we do not do all in our power to enlighten souls that are in darkness. We may shun duty, delay duty, but it is duty still. No business is of sufficient value to deter us from duty that is marked out for us by the Lord, Him whose word of command is the highest law for the soul. 4LtMs, Lt 38, 1886, par. 3

The excuses Satan will make and present before the mind are not one but many to neglect God’s specified will for what seems to be an urgency of business, and the same will be pushed in as barriers day by day. But this will not diminish our obligations to God. The duty of today God requires His soldiers to perform. 4LtMs, Lt 38, 1886, par. 4

How my soul is drawn out for the State of Michigan, planning day and night, dreaming and waking, to arouse our brethren to see and to seize the opportunities within our reach, before Michael shall stand up, before probation closes. The people of our faith seem locked in midnight slumbers. God’s angel of mercy is pleading for entrance to the obdurate heart in vain. Those who should come up to the help of the Lord, to the help of the Lord against the mighty, those who should be channels of light, polished instruments for God, are doing nothing. Many of them are locked in stupid indifference when they should be winning souls to Christ. 4LtMs, Lt 38, 1886, par. 5

Michigan is a good field, but strangely neglected. May the Lord of heaven open the blind eyes, arouse the dulled senses, quicken the desire in hearts to devotion, to earnest effort for the salvation of souls. My heart is burdened for Michigan. I dreamed I was in a meeting where were our leading men, and a messenger from heaven came in and said, “Why are ye slow of heart to believe? why are ye doing so little? why do ye not see the fields all ripe for the harvest? Why have ye not shown wise generalship in securing your workers in the Lord’s harvest? Your ideas are not after God’s order; you are too narrow. You bind about the work with your own narrow plans. You are dying out in much. While you should feel the necessity of caution, and avoid extravagance, you should have that far-seeing judgment to plan rapidly, to execute without delay, to seize the talent wherever you can find it, educate, discipline, train it, that faithful workers shall be in the field. Where now there is one there should be one hundred. You are far behind. The wheels of time are rolling on, and you are doing little less than nothing. Death is seizing the workers in the wide harvest field because of your overstrained ideas of economy of means.” Much more was said which I cannot now write. 4LtMs, Lt 38, 1886, par. 6

I must close this, for there are other duties I must do in writing to many. May the Lord help you, my son, much loved children, to do all your duty, for there is a crown of life for the faithful. 4LtMs, Lt 38, 1886, par. 7

Your mother. 4LtMs, Lt 38, 1886, par. 8