Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 6

268/333

Ms 1a, 1890

A Consecrated Ministry

Battle Creek, Michigan

February 13, 1890

Formerly Undated Ms 134. This manuscript is published in entirety in PH028 1-20.

I have a deep interest in the Fresno church. I gave them counsel last winter, when I was solicited by letter to use my influence to have Eld. E. P. Daniels return to labor for the church in Fresno. They said that the Lord was blessing them abundantly. The sick were healed, and the converting power of God was in their midst. They thought that if Elder Daniels could only come back, what a great work might be done! 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 1

That night the angel of the Lord stood by my side, and talked with me. He said that the church at Fresno would have to learn many things; that many were there who ought not to be there; that all must draw nearer to God, find their strength in Him, and not in man. They must use their own powers, that God has given them, and let their light shine forth in good works. He said that they had placed man where God should be; but when they should make God alone their trust, then He would educate them, and lead them in safe paths. Then they would be lightbearers to the world, and would not walk in darkness. But now they were trusting in man to do the work for them which the Lord God of Israel alone could do. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 2

The Lord was working, signifying that He was their power and efficiency; and if they would work in harmony with Him, talking to one another in faith and humility, dwelling on the lessons of Christ, if they would set things in order in the church and let God speak to human hearts, then the Spirit of God would come into their midst, and a repentance would be seen that would not need to be repented of. But if they did not make the Lord their trust, the blessing they had received would be only their condemnation. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 3

It is not the will of God that the mold of Eld. Daniels should be upon the church in Fresno, for it would not be the mold of Christ. He is not a man whose influence will be permanent. God would have His people in every conference look to Him, and Him alone, and not make flesh their arm. He whose eyes are “as a flame of fire” is searching every church in the world. [Revelation 1:14.] His gaze is piercing every heart. He is measuring the temple and the worshipers thereof, weighing all their actions in the golden scales of heaven and registering the result in the books of record. All things are open to the eye of Him with whom we have to do. He is a discerner of the thoughts and intents and purposes of the heart. No deed of darkness can be screened from His view. Sin, undetected by man, unsuspected by human minds, is noted and registered by the great Heartsearcher. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 4

Christ “loved the church, and gave Himself for it.” [Ephesians 5:25.] It is the purchase of His blood. The divine Son of God is seen walking amid the seven golden candlesticks. Jesus Himself supplies the oil to these burning lamps. He it is that kindles the flame. “In Him was life; and the life was the light of men.” [John 1:4.] No candlestick, no church, shines of itself. From Christ emanates all its light. The church in heaven today is only the complement of the church on earth; but it is higher, grander—perfect. The same divine illumination is to continue through eternal ages. The Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the light thereof. No church can have light if it fails to diffuse the glory it receives from the throne of God. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 5

The “Woe, woe, woe!” [Revelation 8:13] was pronounced upon a church who walked in the sparks of their own kindling, who did not derive their light and power from the great central light, the Sun of Righteousness, and diffuse that light and glory to those who were in darkness. By absorbing and diffusing the light, they cause their own light to burn brighter. The one who receives light, but does not give it as God requires him to do, will become a receptacle of darkness. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 6

The church in Fresno is composed of fragments of other churches. They are not ignorant of the Scriptures and the power of God; and if they are what God would have them be, they will be lightbearers to the world. This church is too large. Many ought to be out carrying the light of truth to those who are in darkness. If they neglect this, the woe of God will be upon them. Let them not tarry there, but go out as workers together with God. We are not here in this world to please and glorify ourselves, but to be colaborers with God. Probationary time is about to close; now is the time to work, and that without delay. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 7

The present is a solemn, fearful time for the church. The angels are already girded, awaiting the mandate of God to pour their vials of wrath upon the world. Destroying angels are taking up the work of vengeance, for the Spirit of God is gradually withdrawing from the world. Satan is also mustering his forces of evil, going forth “unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world,” to gather them under his banner, to be trained for “the battle of that great day of God Almighty.” [Revelation 16:14.] Satan is to make most powerful efforts for the mastery in the last great conflict. Fundamental principles will be brought out, and decisions made in regard to them. Skepticism is prevailing everywhere. Ungodliness abounds. The faith of individual members of the church will be tested as though there were not another person in the world. “Who will render to every man according to his deeds: to them who by patient continuance in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life; but unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, upon every son of man that doeth evil, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile; but glory, honor, and peace to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile; for there is no respect of persons with God.” [Romans 2:6-11.] We claim to have faith, but O, how feeble! “The right hand of the Lord is exalted: the right hand of the Lord doeth valiantly.” [Psalm 118:16.] “The haughtiness of men shall be made low; and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day.” [Isaiah 2:17.] 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 8

The Christ of Patmos had in His right hand seven stars. This assures us that no church faithful to their trust need fear of coming to naught; for not a star that has the protection of omnipotence can be plucked from the hand of Christ. If a star separates itself from God, and falls from its setting, another will take its place. There will never be less than seven, this number being God’s symbol of completeness. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 9

Satan has worked upon every church in our land to lift up and exalt man, as though power originated with the man. And thus the man is made to eclipse the glory of God. I have many things to say unto the churches from the Lord God of hosts, but they cannot bear them now. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 10

Now, God would have the church in Fresno dependent on no living man. But when they become so blind as to choose a man to preach to them the message appropriate for this time—a man possessing great weakness of character and of little moral power—and give him the oversight of the flock, the candlesticks must be terribly shaken and moved out of their place. If you accept the labors of Elder Daniels in the church at Fresno while he is in his present state of darkness, it will be dishonoring God. It will lower the standard of righteousness to the ruin of man and the detriment of the church. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 11

The Lord said to Joshua, “Neither will I be with you any more, except ye destroy the accursed from among you.” [Joshua 7:12.] The defects of character in any member of the church, or in the minister, are charged to the church, if the church makes light of the defects. If you place Elder Daniels over the church as a minister, you, as a church, assume his defects, you make them your own, and the whole church stands under the rebuke of God, even as ancient Israel was under His rebuke on account of the sin of Achan. But your case will be more grievous than theirs, because you knew the evil, yet hid your eyes from it, and walked contrary to the will of God. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 12

Elder Daniels’ peculiar talent is to move the feelings of the people; but this, in many, many cases, seen as God sees it, results in far more harm than good. His case has been my special burden for years; and as God has laid open to me the weaknesses and errors of the man, I have laid them distinctly before him. Has he received the testimonies? Has he acted upon them? No. He has not taken the pains to study them, point by point, as a word from God to him. He has not heeded the warnings. He has imagined something that Sister White has done or said to make of none effect the warnings of the Spirit of God. Will you please to ask Elder Daniels to tell you wherein he thinks Sister White denies her own teachings? Set the words down on paper, and send them to me. If I am guilty, I will confess the same; if not, I shall charge him with bearing false witness as he has done again and again in regard to my words, my actions, and the things which I eat. He says he believes the testimonies but cannot understand them. I present these testimonies now, as a solemn duty I owe to the Master whose servant I am, to see if your eyesight is so darkened that you cannot understand them. Blindness of the heart is a terrible barrier to the discerning truth. “He shall take of mine, and shall show it unto you,” is the declaration of Christ, revealing how the Holy Spirit operates upon the mind. [John 16:15.] Sin is the disease of the soul; in consequence of which, the understanding fails to do its appointed work on the heart and memory. For many years I have met this more or less in my experience. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 13

When the soul is brought into close relationship with the great Author of light and truth, impressions are made upon it revealing its true position before God. Then self will die, pride will be laid low, and Christ will draw His own image in deeper lines upon the soul. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 14

I fully believe that the time has come for you at Fresno to take a decided stand against evil in one who has had so great light as Elder E. P. Daniels if you would be the means of saving his soul. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 15

Men who are under the training of the great Teacher will understand the testimonies that He sends them. Those who will not hear and obey the words of Christ will not heart and obey the message of Christ to them personally. Men will rise up against anything that rebukes their unchristlike course. Shall the testimonies of the Spirit of God be accounted as a thing of naught? Shall a man be put in the position of teacher whose course has been such as to make him an unsafe guide, both because he has not the Spirit of Christ and because he says, in his character, “I know not the Man” [Matthew 26:74], just as he willfully says, “I know not the testimonies”? Will you in Fresno accept a man as your teacher who cannot understand these things which you all now have an opportunity to read for yourselves? Spiritual things are spiritually discerned; and if he cannot discern the testimony of the Spirit to himself, how can he discern the testimony of God’s Word and be able to give to every man his portion of meat in due season? He may present clear and cutting truth to the people and yet not understand that it is to be brought into his own life and interwoven with his character. He keeps the truth outside of his inner life, in the outer court. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 16

It is the truth enshrined in the soul that makes one a man of God. Oratory, though it may please a certain class, will prove a snare to the one who uses it and a snare to the church. When E. P. Daniels understands what constitutes sin, he will understand the testimonies that reprove certain sins with which he is so easily beset. But the examination of his own heart, his acts and motives, to see whether they are in accordance with the perfect standard of righteousness, is not pleasing to him. He has no desire to meditate and pray. The guilt of untruth is often upon his lips, because it is a habit which has not been overcome, although he has confessed the sin. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 17

The part man has to act in the salvation of the soul is to believe on Jesus Christ as a perfect Redeemer, not for some other man, but for his own self. He is to trust, to love, to fear the God of heaven. There is a certain work to be accomplished. Man must be delivered from the power of sin. He must be made perfect in every good work. In doing the words of Christ is his only assurance that his house is built upon the solid foundation. To hear, to say, to preach, and not to do the words of Christ is building upon the sand. Those who do the words of Christ will perfect a Christian character, because Christ’s will is their will. Thus is Christ formed within, the hope of glory. They are beholding, as in a glass, the glory of God. By making Christ the subject of meditation, He will become the subject of conversation; and by beholding, we will in character be changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even by the Spirit of the Lord. Man, fallen man, may be transformed by the renewing of the mind so that he can “prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.” [Romans 12:2.] How does he prove this? By the Holy Spirit taking possession of his mind, spirit, heart, and character. Where does the proving come in? “We are a spectacle to the world, to angels, and to men.” [1 Corinthians 4:9.] A real work is wrought by the Holy Spirit upon the human character, and its fruits are seen. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 18

Just as a good tree will bear good fruit, so will the tree that is actually planted in the Lord’s garden produce good fruit unto eternal life. Besetting sins are overcome; evil thoughts are not allowed in the mind; evil habits are purged from the soul temple. The tendencies which have been biased in a wrong direction are turned in a right direction. Wrong dispositions and feelings are changed, new principles of action supplied, and there is a new standard of character. Holy tempers and sanctified emotions are now the fruit borne upon the Christian tree. An entire transformation has taken place. This is the work to be wrought. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 19

We see by experience that in our own human strength resolutions and purposes are of no avail. Must we, then, give up our determined efforts? No. Although our experience testifies that we cannot possibly do this work ourselves, help has been laid upon One who is mighty to do it for us. But the only way that we can secure the help of God is to put ourselves wholly in His hands and trust Him to work for us. As we lay hold of Him by faith, He does the work. The believer can only trust. As God works, we can work, trusting in Him and doing His will. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 20

This work must be done for E. P. Daniels before he can be entrusted with the care of the flock. If the human agent will only become one with Christ, then he will work as Christ worked. But he cannot sit down in the devil’s easy chair and say, “I have hereditary tendencies, and I have habits which I cannot overcome. You must bear with my imperfections: no one is perfect in this world.” If he does this, he is a lost man. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 21

Sincere Christians have no doubtful piety. They have put on the Lord Jesus Christ and have made no provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof. They are constantly looking to Jesus for His orders, as a servant looks to his master, or as a maid looks to her mistress. Wheresoever God’s providence may lead, they stand ready to go. They take no glory to themselves. They do not call anything they have—learning, talents, property—their own, but regard themselves as only stewards of the manifold grace of Christ and servants to the church for Christ’s sake. These are messengers of the Lord, a light amid the darkness. Their hearts throb in unison with the great heart of Christ. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 22

I now present before E. P. Daniels his pitiable case. Any one, whatever his position or influence, who will desire him to preach to the churches in his present, unestablished condition, cannot discern spiritual things. Elder Daniels says, “I believe the testimonies, but I do not understand them; I believe in health reform, but do not understand it.” This is a falsehood to his own soul. If he is in this position, let him repent and do his first works. There are enough who are giving the trumpet no certain sound. Men like faithful Caleb are wanted now who can give a ringing message. It is a goodly land that we are going to, and we are well able to go up and possess it. We want no shepherds who cannot discern between truth and falsehood, who give mixed provender of truth and error. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 23

I speak to the church in Fresno, For Christ’s sake move intelligently. Do not blunder here when the interest of a church is at stake. I pity Elder Daniels, for the church at Fresno have hurt him by placing him where God should be. His ambition has been fed; indolence, self-indulgence, and a low condition of piety have brought upon him spiritual feebleness and blindness, and he has become unfitted to be a minister of the gospel of Christ. If you place him in that position, you dishonor the cause of God, for he has surely fallen into the snare of the devil. There is only one way of escape; he must be converted; he must do just as he has told others to do—repent, confess, make restitution—or he will never see the kingdom of heaven. He must return to his first love and come out from the darkness of unbelief and skepticism. When he shall have clear convictions once more, when the Holy Spirit shall have dominion over his soul, when love, faith, and childlike simplicity shall be the rule of his life, then he may believe that Christ is dwelling in him, and the people everywhere may believe it too, for they see that he has learned the lessons in the school of Christ. Is this more than God requires? No, no! Christ demands, in return for the blood He has shed, the heaven He has prepared, nothing less than entire consecration. “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” should be the burden of every prayer. [Acts 9:6.] 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 24

Our anxiety should not be to secure a minister who will please the people by smart speeches and oratory, in order to gain flattery and applause, but to secure men who are laborers together with God, men who study to show themselves approved unto God. Our intense desire should be to give, by a well-ordered life and a godly conversation, discourses solemn, earnest, and tender, with the unction of the Holy Spirit. Those who labor in this spirit are never satisfied with themselves. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 25

God demands homage which He has not received from Elder Daniels—homage in words, in actions. Let him remember that he is to give an account to God, who will “judge the quick and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom.” [2 Timothy 4:1.] If our convictions of duty are honestly met, faithfulness becomes the great law of life, impressing, improving and molding every principle and phase of character. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 26

God requires every steward of the grace of Christ to be faithful, to elevate and purify every power of his nature, that he may be a man and a child of God. Christ died for him; and with a high sense of his accountability, understanding when God speaks, he will become a polished instrument in the hands of God to bless his fellowmen. To perform his work well, to make the most of his priceless opportunities, will be to him a sacred duty. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 27

Stand back, brethren, do not lay responsibilities upon Elder Daniels now. He is not ready for them and will not be until he knows something for certain. Leave him to pray and search his heart until the darkness passes away and the true light shines. Then he will know what God would have him to be. Do you think, brethren in Fresno, or does Eld. Daniels imagine, that it is a small offense to prove false to sacred obligations? Shall the man who perverts his abilities and uses his influence as unwisely as Eld. Daniels has done be placed in a position of sacred, holy trust? God forbid! He has robbed God in not putting to the very best use all his blood-bought powers. Shall he be guiltless who misuses and misapplies talents lent him of God to be improved to the utmost? Surely that God who will judge the world in righteousness, and with a rigorous impartiality, demands His own with usury. How can He say to Elder Daniels, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant”? [Matthew 25:21.] Condemnation will be passed on every one who has wasted his Lord’s substance. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 28

I hope that every man and woman who names the name of Christ in Fresno will consider the words I have written you with solemn earnestness and that you will not flatter Elder Daniels. Give him no applause to encourage him in his unbelief. He may despise the warnings given him of God; he may act an unchristian part; and yet are you so blind as to insist that there is no man like Elder Daniels? That you must have him, even under the rebuke of God, because his entertaining sharpness pleases a certain class of minds? Do you think that you can get along if he is not spiritual? That if he only pleases and interests you, piety, holiness, and the Christian graces are not essential? Do you not know, brethren in Fresno, that the whole heavenly universe is looking upon you to see whether you will exalt the standard of Christianity or lower it in the very dust? God is looking upon you; Jesus, who has given you an example in His holy life, is watching to see whether you, as a church, feel that it is an important matter that you should discern between true goodness and sin. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 29

The last days are upon us, and Satan is working with all his hellish arts to deceive and destroy souls. Reproofs by testimony are met, almost universally, by the ones corrected and reproved, with, “I believe the testimonies, but I do not understand them.” The Lord has corrected their wrong ways in order to save them from unhappiness, deception, and ruin; but they pass on the same as if light and warnings had never come to them. If they were in harmony with God, they would not be departing from Him. It is because they are so far separated from God that they do not hear His voice as He calls to them, “Return unto me, and I will return unto you,” “and heal all thy backslidings.” [Malachi 3:7; Jeremiah 3:22.] 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 30

Saul, after he had disobeyed the requirement of God to destroy the Amalekites, met Samuel and said, “Blessed be thou of the Lord; I have performed the commandment of the Lord.” And Samuel said, “What meaneth then this bleating of the sheep in mine ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?” The answer was the same that we have heard in similar cases—an excuse, a falsehood: “The people spared the best of the sheep and of the oxen, to sacrifice unto the Lord thy God.” [1 Samuel 15:13-15.] Saul did not say my or our, but thy God. Many who profess to be serving God are in the same position as Saul—covering over ambitious projects, pride of display, with a garment of pretended righteousness. The Lord’s cause is made a cloak to hide the deformity of injustice, but it makes the sin of tenfold greater enormity. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 31

Samuel looked upon Saul with indignation, yet with deep pity and undisguised grief for the sinful course of one he loved sincerely; but this love must not close his lips. He said, “Stay, and I will tell thee what the Lord hath said to me this night.” The kingly head was bent as he answered, “Say on.” [Verse 16.] Samuel then spake the cutting words of the Lord. Yet Saul repeated his defense—they saved the spoil to sacrifice to the Lord. “Hath God as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the word of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the Word of the Lord, He hath also rejected thee from being king.” Smitten with agony and terror, Saul cried, “I have sinned. ... Pardon my sin, and turn again with me, that I may worship the Lord.” [Verses 22-25.] Saul hoped the sentence would be reversed. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 32

Oh, how few can know the sadness of heart that Samuel bore back to Ramah! God had laid upon him the burden of Saul and the burden of this terrible message that he must bear to the monarch. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 33

The sinner seldom feels right in regard to reproof. He blames the one who opens his lips to speak the words of warning, as though it were a personal matter. In his blindness he fails to see that he is flinging from him, in his stubborn resistance, his last offer of light and mercy. How little sympathy he feels for the one who has carried the heavy load the Lord has laid upon him! He assumes the role of a martyr and thinks he deserves great pity, because he is reproved and counseled contrary to his own ideas and feelings. He may admit some things, but with dogged persistency he holds fast to his errors, his own ideas. “For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry.” [Verse 23.] The Word of God is rejected in spirit, to all intents and purposes. I have been made to see this same bewitching power now as I have never seen it before, of hatred against reproof, of stubbornness and rebellion; the one reproved clings to his own opinions, unyielding. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 34

How different was the character of David! Though he had sinned, when God sent him sharp rebukes he always bowed under the chastisement of the Lord. David was beloved of God, not because he was a perfect man, but because he did not cherish stubborn resistance to God’s expressed will. His spirit did not rise up in rebellion against reproof. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 35

Saith the Lord, “I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, and to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.” [Isaiah 57:15.] David erred greatly, but he was just as greatly humbled, and his contrition was as profound as his guilt. There was never a man more humble than David under a sense of his sin. He showed himself a strong man, not in always resisting temptation, but in the contrition of soul and sincere penitence manifested. He never lost his confidence in God, who put the stern rebuke in the mouth of His prophet. He had no hatred for the prophet of God. He was beloved, also, because he relied upon the mercy of a God whom he had loved and served and honored. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 36

To whom much is forgiven, the same loveth much. David did not take counsel of men who were sinning against God. This is where many fail. They are left in midnight darkness because they choose to counsel with men who walk not in the counsel of the Lord. They will excuse sin in the sinner when it is not repented of and pass over wrongs when God has not forgiven them. David trusted in God more than in man. The decision of God was accepted as just and merciful. O, how many are walking in blindness and leading others in the same path, where both must perish, because they will not heed the reproofs of the Spirit of God! 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 37

Brethren at Fresno, there is with Elder Daniels a human influence combined with a mesmeric power. It is this that has led him to speak of congregations as bodies that he can manipulate. Why is it that the man cannot understand the health reform? It is because his appetites and practices are condemned by it. He cannot harmonize his practices with the light God has given on this subject, in His Word and through the testimonies. He cannot, then, of course, have an intelligent, practical knowledge of health reform. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 38

Will Elder Daniels please make his statements, telling wherein Sister White contradicts her own teachings? I know that he stated that I drank tea, and invited him to drink it, saying it was good for him. Not only myself, but the members of my family, know this to be an untruth. What other things he has stated I cannot determine. But what if some one did use these things contrary to the light of health reform? Is it not best to follow the Bible teaching upon temperance and the light given in testimony? Do you not remember that we have an individual accountability? We do not make articles of diet a test question, but we do try to educate the intellect and to arouse the moral sensibility to take hold of health reform in an intelligent manner, as Paul presents it in Romans 13:8-14; 1 Corinthians 9:24-27; 1 Timothy 3:8-12. Are not the qualifications which he says are essential in the deacon equally essential in the elder of the church? The deacons were church officers. (2 Corinthians 6:4): “But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses.” (1 Timothy 5:22): “Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partaker of other men’s sins: keep thyself pure.” Here is a matter that is worthy of consideration. In the 21st verse the solemn charge is given: “I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality.” These (verses, 21 and 22), need to be carefully and prayerfully considered. Sin should be rebuked. Whatever opposition and trial might come to the elder of the church because of his faithfulness, he should not swerve from true principles. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 39

Sins should not, because of unsanctified preferences and sympathy, be lightly regarded in one man which would be condemned in another. This matter is one of great importance. If he trusts responsibilities to one whose habits and practices he knows to be wrong, he shows that his own principles are not sound, that his motives are questionable. By this very act he sanctions the errors and sins of the man he has commended and appointed to the sacred office of caring for the flock of God. Unless he is guarded by heavenly wisdom, he will place himself in a position where he will feel it necessary to sustain the man with whom he has united his influence; and God will hold him responsible for his brother’s unfaithfulness in office and for the harm which will result to the church. He must keep himself pure by refusing to mingle with any unholy influence. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 40

Some men’s sins are open beforehand, confessed in penitence, and forsaken, and they go beforehand to judgment. Pardon is written over against the names of these men. But other men’s sins follow after and are not put away by repentance and confession, and these sins will stand registered against them in the books of heaven. Likewise also the good works of some are manifest beforehand. Christ is the pattern to be copied in the life. When a man gives evidence that he is sound in principle, when he is of good repute among those where he is best known, when his character is one whose influence will be Christlike, he should be admitted to fellowship and confidence without hesitancy. But he whose works show him to be unstable, who says one thing and does the very opposite, is careless of his words and influence, bringing out of his heart the evil things lurking there, such a one will profane both men and God. He will say anything that comes into his mind, whether he knows it to be falsehood or truth. There is a mixture of good and bad in his character, and he speaks just as he feels without studying the influence his words must have upon those who believe him to be a true minister of the gospel. They have heard him speak as Christ’s ambassador, and therefore they will either regard his sins lightly or their confidence in him as a devoted servant of Christ will be destroyed. The minister of Christ should be circumspect; he should understand human nature. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 41

I have written quite fully to you, brethren, in regard to these matters, in order that you might understand the case. I am now clear. Whatever course you may pursue cannot reflect on me. I would be pleased and glorify God if Elder Daniels would come into a position where we could, with all our hearts, give him the fullest confidence; but until he is a changed man, we cannot give him a place of influence in the church. His movements are frantic and in no way such as to recommend him as an overseer of the flock of God. I have now done my duty in the fear of God, and I leave you to bear the responsibility. In the fear of God, I warn you not to place this man, whom you know is not controlled by the Spirit of God, in the preacher’s desk to teach the people. You want a man who loves and fears God, one whom God can use as His instrument, who will not be playing himself into the hands of the enemy whenever circumstances are favorable. 6LtMs, Ms 1a, 1890, par. 42