Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 7 (1891-1892)


Lt 18, 1892

Kellogg, J. H.

Preston, Melbourne, Australia

April 15, 1892

This letter is published in entirety in 1888 977-986.

Dear Brother:

Your letter in reference to Elder Waggoner and Dr. Paquin, I am sorry to say, is not before me. Willie is in New Zealand, and I sent the letter to him, and when the book came addressed to him, I sent that. I have not read any thing of Elder Waggoner’s articles in [the] Review. But from the way the Lord has been leading my mind, I feel that you are in danger. I had so hoped and believed that the Lord in His love and mercy to you had given you a clearer insight into His character and that of Jesus Christ whom He has sent, so that by His grace your feet would be planted upon the solid Rock, and that through an experimental knowledge of what Jesus is to you and you to Him you would be able to work more decidedly in a religious line than you have heretofore. You are in a responsible position and should have a daily experience in the knowledge of God and of Jesus Christ. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 1

The many cautions that, in the loving-kindness of the Lord, have been sent to you lead me to write you now in this matter. Be careful how you take a position against Elder Waggoner. Have you not the best of evidence that the Lord has been communicating light through him? I have; and the people where he has labored have been greatly blessed under his labors. Have you evidence that Dr. Paquin, who has written the book in question, has been standing where the bright rays of the Sun of Righteousness are shining upon him? Have you evidence that he is an instrument in the hands of God to bring in the rays of light essential for God’s people in these last days, to increase their faith and confidence in spiritual things? 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 2

I have been shown that in the Sanitarium at Battle Creek there is great need of walking humbly before God, for Satan is devising snares to take every mind that is not entirely surrendered to God—looking to God for light and wisdom daily. There are constant temptations for physicians to exalt science above the God who is the Ruler of the universe. There is danger that the physicians will little by little leave the simplicity of Bible faith in the power of God. This has been presented to me for many years as an active agency to becloud the minds of those who are studying to become physicians, and many have fallen over this stone of stumbling; and many more will stumble, because they are not humble men as the Bible declares they must be. There has been presented to me in a very decided manner the danger to which our youth are exposed in associating with the educators in a medical institution and listening to their arguments. If the youth do not feel their daily dependence upon God, they will be deceived to their own ruin. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 3

Here, my brother, has been and will be your danger in your scientific researches. Unless you are daily increasing in the knowledge and love of the truth, growing up into Christ, your living Head, you are in positive danger. I have not at present any thing to say to you or Elder Waggoner in regard to the author of the book published. I have not strength to give to these questions; but I know that the Lord has been pleased to show me, in clear lines, your danger in the past and at the present time. Be careful how you favor these things that limit the power of God. The time is right upon us when the whole earth will be lightened with His glory. That light is beginning to shine already, and your special study should be to keep pace with the opening providence of God, for it is a terrible thing to be spiritually blind. It is fatal for man to feel safe to walk in sparks of his own kindling. Sophistry will weave for you a very fine web; I fear that it will ensnare you. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 4

There has been a wonderful unfolding of lines of truth more precious than the golden wedge of Ophir, but you have not heard much of the truth and have not had the opportunity many have had of experiencing for yourself its power. There will be circumstances that appear very inconsistent to your judgment and reason, and you criticise these things and do not lay hold of the grand and precious things which, if they were brought into your life, would increase your usefulness, because you would have altogether a different kind of faith. I am surprised and grieved to the heart to see how little genuine faith there is in our world. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 5

I want to tell you, my brother, that human wisdom, unless sanctified day by day, is foolishness. That which finite beings take great pride in is very weak in the sight of a holy God. Very much is expressed in these words: “This is life eternal, that they might know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.” [John 17:3.] “Thus saith the Lord, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the Lord which exercise loving-kindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the Lord.” [Jeremiah 9:23, 24.] 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 6

I remember well the reproof given to Drs. Sprague and Fairfield, that they had made the mistake so common with physicians, that science was everything. Satan was weaving his net about their feet, and very much was made of the powers inherent in man and in nature; and this matter became so subtle in its influence, as they viewed it, that the power and glory of God were not exalted. They were wandering in the mazes of skepticism. The ordinances of grace, which would have kept alive the spark of faith, were not deemed of vital importance: they had no oil in their vessels with their lamps. They saw no necessity of the instrumentalities God employs through which the lamps were to be kept burning. Even the mediatorial work of Christ, through which is to be derived whatever tends to illuminate the understanding and warm the heart, was not felt by them to be a necessity. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 7

Christ is the channel through which alone man can have access to God and become a partaker of the divine nature. The Lord God gives light to the true, earnest seekers after Him, for He giveth them Himself. “This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.” [1 John 1:5.] And why? Because God in His own mysterious way communicates Himself to the soul. “The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.” [Psalm 119:130.] God substitutes His ideas for human ideas and inventions, and these ideas are great, noble, and luminous. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 8

Once these young men were willing to submit their wills and ideas to God’s will and ways. But they became confused through your ideas of science. While you could start them on a track of investigation, you could not control their imagination. Human ideas, contracted, confused, and obscure, were to them like the bright shining of a candle at midnight. They were simply walking in the sparks of their own kindling. If they had consecrated to God their powers of mind, soul, and body, there would have been an amazing change as to the quality of the knowledge acquired and the mode of acquiring it. Study and research were essential, but they needed to realize their danger and look to God at every step, the creature to be directed by the Creator. As they received their medical education, there were lessons of the highest importance to be kept ever before them—lessons which they could learn only in the school of Christ. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 9

They needed to become meek and lowly in heart, then they would have power to discern the precious things of the future life; they would comprehend something of the mystery of godliness and the breadth and depth of the love of God which passes knowledge. But their minds were turned away from that which was of eternal importance to human ideas and inventions which glorify man and obscure the clear views they might have had of God. Their only hope was in clinging fast to a power out of and above themselves, even the power of the Infinite One. Then their love and perception of spiritual things would have increased. Truth in its virtue and purity would print its image on the soul, and thus the mind would strengthen and develop. They would not be weaklings, liable to constant mistakes and misapprehensions. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 10

These men have fallen because of their human ideas of science. I know if you had stood in the clear light, if you, in your position of trust, had felt that you needed to walk humbly and carefully before God, if you had daily felt the need of His grace, His power, His wisdom, you could have been as a light shining in a dark place and could have guided these poor souls to Jesus, their only hope. Now, I do not present this matter to discourage you but to warn you, that you may not make crooked paths for your feet and lead others astray. You need to have divine enlightenment through an experimental knowledge of God and our Saviour. My much respected brother, you need the divine touch. “The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” [John 14:26.] 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 11

There is a higher standard for you to reach in spiritual things, and I greatly hoped that this sickness and your gracious recovery through the mercy of God would clear away much of the fog that has obscured your spiritual vision. Much of the talk about science I know is a snare. Men have erroneous views of science; they should be searching diligently to see if they are accepting Christ as their personal Saviour. All our belief in Christ is of no value unless we individually receive Him as our personal Saviour. This is where you have failed; your own salvation is a matter of eternal moment with you. The divine influence of the Spirit of God is needed to work upon your heart daily or you will fail in the arduous duties which rest upon you. The weighty responsibilities that you have to bear require more than human wisdom and strength, and your earnest supplications for the heavenly influences will not be in vain. It is not enough for you and me to assent to the truth. We need to have a practical knowledge of the truth. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 12

Every believer in Christ is a believer in God’s mercy. The renewing of the heart is a far greater miracle than the healing of the diseases of the body. The scantiness of the working of the Holy Spirit upon the church is to be deplored. But God is not to blame. He has furnished every treasure in heaven in the gift of Jesus Christ; but those who, like Capernaum have been exalted to heaven in point of privilege, have neglected their opportunities and have not been doers of the Word. They have been faithless and have dishonored God. They have clung to their own habits, ideas, and practices in the face of the reproof of the Spirit of God, whose office it is to reprove the world of sin and of righteousness and of judgment. The members of the church have not walked in the light, but have chosen to walk in sparks of their own kindling. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 13

The Holy Spirit’s presence and power in the hearts of the professed people of God is their only hope in these last days of peril. Let not the impression be given to any minds that there is in human nature a power to work out its purity and develop a beautiful character, for this is not true. This is Satan’s fallacy. “Without me,” said Christ, “Ye can do nothing.” [John 15:5.] The completeness of man is in Christ Jesus. The reason why Seventh-day Adventists have not more power is that many of them have got above the simplicity of the work. They plan and execute without God. The Lord is ready to give us light; He is to shine before the world. “There is no searching of his understanding.” [Isaiah 40:28.] But men darken counsel by words without knowledge. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 14

I want you, my brother, to stand under the shadow of the cross. The beams of the Sun of Righteousness shine directly there. I have not time to write more now, but I do feel an interest for your soul. Talk less, exalt science less, let your Redeemer be the One exalted. The melody of heaven is praise to God and the Lamb; it sounds forth from the voices of ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands. Why does not praise flow from our lips? Why are we so dumb? The Lord is ready to disclose to His church more and more of His wonderful power and to open new lines of thought in regard to the great plan of redemption: the love, the matchless love, that moved Him to give His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 15

Let me tell you, Dr. Kellogg, it is not safe for us to employ as instructors in our institutions those who are not believers in the present truth. They advance ideas and theories that take hold of the mind with a bewitching power, that absorb the thoughts, making a world of an atom, and an atom of a world. If we had less to say in regard to microbes and more in regard to the matchless love and power of God, we should honor God far more. These things are dwelt upon too much, and the things we ought to know, which concern our eternal interest, receive altogether too little attention. Throw a veil over the poor, decaying earth, which is corrupted on account of the wickedness of its inhabitants and point to the heavenly world. There is need of far more teaching in regard to having, in this life, a vital connection with God through Christ, that we may be fitted to enjoy heaven and dwell forever with our Lord. If we would attain to a pure and elevated ideal of character, we must lift up Jesus, the perfect example; the exalting of science will never accomplish the work. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 16

Dr. Kellogg, I entreat you to come close to Jesus; you need Him every moment. I can say no more now, for this letter must go into the mail; but if the Lord gives me strength, I will write further upon this subject. Your own letter has called this out; I have not had a line from Dr. Waggoner or A. T. Jones since I came to Australia. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 17

Please accept these hastily written lines from one who has the deepest interest in your prosperity. 7LtMs, Lt 18, 1892, par. 18