Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 7 (1891-1892)


Lt 42, 1892

Ings, Brother and Sister

North Fitzroy, Australia

August 11, 1892

Formerly Undated Ms 82. Previously unpublished.

Dear Brother and Sister Ings,

I am stronger than I have been, and although as great a cripple as ever I believe I am improving in some respects. Since leaving San Francisco I have written over sixteen hundred pages, including what I wrote on the steamer Alameda and since coming to Melbourne. You see I have not been idle. For a few weeks I was very badly crippled with my hand and arm, but by taking a certain position, I was enabled to write. I look back with gratitude to God for the work that has been done. Without special help from heaven, I could not have done what I have. From a sincere heart I say, Thanks be unto God who has given me the aid of His Holy Spirit. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 1

My long period of sickness and suffering has been a mystery to me; but although I know not, God knows. Yesterday was a pleasant day. I rode out with Fannie and Sister Rousseau, and in the afternoon with May and Annie. The girls gathered dock and mustard for greens for dinner, while I sat in the carriage and wrote in my diary. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 2

Plans are now being made to open the school. Brother and Sister Starr have taken their rooms in the school building, and the last of this week or the first of next, Brother and Sister Rousseau will take up their abode in the school also. We are talking of moving near the school if a tenement can be obtained. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 3

The school buildings consist of two houses in a terrace of four buildings. The other buildings in the terrace are occupied. The brethren at the school think that if I am near the school building, that I can go in and talk to the students, and meet with them in their counsels. They have a lower room where they could hold these meetings, as I could not go up the steps unless I was carried on a chair. It is a painful process for me to lift my feet even to place them on a low footstool. But I have courage in the Lord, and I shall trust Him with my whole heart, for precious is the Word to me. I look forward with heart-longings to the time when I can speak to the people. My heart is full of matter, for the truth is very precious to me, and I behold the last great conflict as very nigh. I want to put on Jesus Christ. I want His presence abiding with me continually. For some time I have been training myself to lay all my burdens on the great Burden Bearer. O how my soul longs after God. I want to breathe in a pure and holy atmosphere. I can trust in Jesus. When I can behold Him with an eye of faith, how precious is the sight! 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 4

Satan casts his hellish shadow before us to intercept our views of God, of His love and tender compassions; but we must not allow this. Our faith must penetrate the thick cloud of darkness. We must not look at the cloud, and talk about it, and dread it, for by beholding we become changed. We must keep the eye of faith on Jesus. The Apostle Paul declared to his Corinthian brethren that he determined to know nothing among them save Jesus Christ and Him crucified. [1 Corinthians 2:2.] 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 5

Jesus says, “Blessed are the pure in heart; for they shall see God.” [Matthew 5:8.] O, what a statement is this! May the Lord impress our hearts with an intelligent understanding of what it is to be pure in heart. How many hours we walk apart from God, because we let the shadows that Satan has cast across our pathway attract our attention, and we look upon the darkness rather than the light. What is Satan’s object in thus keeping our minds upon the darkness? It is that by beholding we may become changed to the same image. By beholding the clouds, we become dark ourselves. But when Jesus is with us we can cheerfully bear His yoke and identify ourselves with Christ, for our life is hid with Christ in God. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 6

When the conscience is alive with a light given from God, we shall have a sense of sin, make confession of sin, and forsake it through the grace given of God. We shall not lift up our souls unto vanity, for if we have a vital connection with God, our consecration will be entire, unstained by doubt or impurity. We shall be self-forgetful and unselfish, Israelites indeed in whom there is no guile, whose only secrets are those of modest goodness. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 7

Although men may err, although they do not watch and pray, but fall into temptations, let no one feel himself strong in himself, and depreciate those whom he thinks to be in error. When we look at the cross of Calvary, we can take no low view of man. Why? Because he has been purchased with the blood of the Son of God. All who fully believe in Christ will place a right estimate upon man, even if he is found to be erring. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 8

We make a great mistake in magnifying that which we believe to be errors in Christians. When we do this we say, I am above all such weakness, and yet the very ones who magnify the errors of others are not pure in heart. They think evil and speak evil, and in their mouth is found guile. Self love stains darkly every heart. It is best for every soul to think modestly of themselves, and have clear perceptions to discern the precious traits of character in his brethren. Although we see defects of character in those who profess to be Christians, yet this should not cause us to lose faith in God and in man. We must respect our brethren and sisters if we would respect ourselves. We cannot repent of past mistakes until we respect those who are children of God. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 9

The conflict is not over with any of us. The victory is not complete. Outward temptations, and inward tendencies to evil, still allure us on, and as we draw near the close of earth’s history, the pressure of the power of darkness grows stronger, for Satan has come down in great wrath, knowing that his time is short. But the more difficulties we encounter and overcome through watchfulness and prayer, the greater will be our experience and the greater our growth in grace. “Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envyings and all evil speaking, as new born babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby.” [1 Peter 2:1, 2.] 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 10

We are to feed upon the Word of God, for in this way we are eating the flesh and drinking the blood of the Son of God, that we may become partakers of the divine nature. Jesus says, “He that cometh to me shall never hunger, he that believeth on me shall never thirst. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day; for my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.” [John 6:35, 54, 55.] As the struggle grows successful, the battle becomes more and more determined. The standard rises as we attain to higher things. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 11

The pure in heart shall see God. What does this signify? Who gives the pure heart? It is Jesus, who gave His life for men. The perfect work of the righteousness of Christ meets and answers all the claims of the law. We receive the precious gift of Christ’s righteousness by faith, and His perfection is placed to our account. We stand therefore before God accepted in the beloved. We stand in grace, in the favor of God who is a loving, tender Father to us. We receive the Spirit of God which will lead us to Christ. In this way we shall see what God meant us to be, and shall put to the tax every power in order that we may become all that Christ designed we should become through His grace. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 12

Let no one go forth to the conflict expecting to be defeated, for if he does, according to his faith it will be unto him. In standing under the banner of Christ, we should realize that we are not engaged in a hopeless enterprise. We must be hopeful, brave soldiers, saying with Paul, “Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect; but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.” “Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” [Philippians 3:12-14.] 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 13

Meekness of heart, hungering after righteousness, and mercy precedes purity of heart. Unless true mercy is cherished by us, purity will not be imputed unto us. Meekness and lowliness of mind, hungering after righteousness, manifesting mercy, not only towards the good but towards the erring, will bring the blessing promised to those who are pure in heart, for they shall see God. They shall behold the matchless loveliness of Christ, and by beholding will become changed into His divine image. Selfishness darkens the soul and shuts away the precious smiles of God. The Lord will impress the human heart with His image, and we shall have, as did Moses, a revelation of His character that will lead to [the] casting away [of] all unbelief, and to the cultivation of that perfect faith which keeps the soul in assurance and peace. The pure in heart shall see God. He will not be left to be tortured by the agony of fearing that he is left to the mercy of one whose heart he knows not. He will not contemplate the future with dread, or feel that he is without God and without hope in the world. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 14

Those who co-operate with God will attain unto purity of heart, and their spiritual eyesight will become clear. The character of God will appear attractive and lovely and glorious. They will see God in nature. They will see Him in His providences, and in meekness will bow to His will, knowing that He understands what is best. Under trying circumstances they will not fret or complain, but be filled with the love of God. They will take up the Word of God, and hear His voice in the assuring promises, and their soul will become alive with God. They will behold His character which is His glory. They will behold His glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. Standing beneath the cross of Calvary they see in the dying victim the heart of God opened to their view. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16.] 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 15

In the death of Christ upon the cross is unfolded the goodness, mercy, pity, sympathy and love of God. Infinite love is without a parallel. The love of God fills all things, and even in sickness, and adversity and bereavement, Christians may see how large and full is the love of God. They may behold in Christ a place of refuge, a heart of infinite pity ready to share their every woe. They see in Christ an infinite Saviour who takes away their sins and imputes unto them His righteousness. Heaven seems near to earth, and they have a peace which passeth all understanding. 7LtMs, Lt 42, 1892, par. 16