Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 8 (1893)


Lt 73, 1893

Haskell, S. N.

Wellington, New Zealand

November 29, 1893

Previously unpublished.

Dear Brother Haskell,

I am sorry that I cannot command strength and time to write you as I would be pleased to do. I have a little history of my travels and labor written, but could not get it copied in season for this mail; will try and have it ready for the papers by next mail. I find I cannot travel, attend important meetings, and write many letters. I have not strength to do this. Gladly would I do this if I could; but if I keep up my strength for these important meetings, I must be careful not to draw too strongly upon my bank funds of physical strength. Last Sunday I passed another birthday and enter my sixty-sixth year. Good is the Lord and greatly to be praised. 8LtMs, Lt 73, 1893, par. 1

I have spent five weeks in Gisborne, uniting my labors with Brother and Sister Wilson. I have spoken eleven times in Gisborne. Twice I spoke in the open air in a paddock adjoining the post office upon the subject of temperance. There was lumber on the ground to make plenty of seats, and a spacious platform for stand and the organ. I knew this was our only hope to secure a congregation. 8LtMs, Lt 73, 1893, par. 2

Everything is kept up on the high pressure plan of plenty of horse racing, betting games for rewards, football, theater-going, card playing, gambling, smoking; drunkenness and iniquity abound everywhere. Eternity is left out of their reckoning. Satan the great master worker, is concealing himself and his efficient working behind the scenes, and laying his plans with all great art and wonderful ingenuity that there shall be no time to meditate or to think of the salvation of their souls. 8LtMs, Lt 73, 1893, par. 3

God has assigned to every man his work. God devises, directs and controls, managing the human agent to do the work assigned him; but Satan can invent, and devise and excite the imagination, and control the minds of all who will chose him for their leader; and the human agents obey, as slaves, the archdeceiver. Unless intelligent beings voluntarily co-operate with God in promoting the great, grand work assigned them, Satan will preoccupy the field of thought, and give each and every one who serve him plenty to do. He will keep every mind and heart employed to do his work, to co-operate with him, to be his instruments to work in his lines, to draw souls and drive them, if possible, from Christ. He stirs them with a power from beneath that they shall be kept so busily engaged in plans, in ambitious hopes, in accepting bribes, and games in horse racing, card playing and gambling, losing and gaining, and thus he succeeds in playing the great and awful game of life for their souls; and he is succeeding in a way that is marvelous to himself. 8LtMs, Lt 73, 1893, par. 4

When the value of eternal gains, a crown of glory, a life that measures with the life of God, is presented, they turn from the heavenly to the earthly so readily. The divine glory, supreme and indispensable good, the high source of all happiness which is proffered them to enjoy throughout eternity is not accepted. The great apostate can exclude Christ and heaven from their vision because they choose to have it so, and the poor souls consent to be misguided by the great deceiver, and are rushed on and on by him into business or plans and amusements, and their god is this world; and when it is too late they find they must enter eternity without preparation of character to dwell with Christ and the saints in light. No wonder Paul inquires, “Who hath bewitched you that ye should not obey the truth?” [Galatians 3:1.] The manner of Satan’s temptations is recorded in sacred history, revealing the subtlety of Satan so that none need to be blind to his devices to ruin souls. Christ Jesus is our only hope, in Him we may trust for eternal life. 8LtMs, Lt 73, 1893, par. 5