Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 8 (1893)


Lt 20, 1893

Bolton, Fannie; Davis, Marian

Gisborne, New Zealand

November 2, 1893

Portions of this letter are published in Ev 122-123, 291.

Dear Fannie and Marian,

The mail goes today to Australia, and I must get this letter in by noon. I would much rather have a talk with you, but as we are so far separated this cannot be. For some weeks I have not slept past four o’clock in the morning, and my waking hour is three or half-past three. I generally write twelve pages before breakfast. I eat no supper and feel much better for it. I feel so glad that daylight comes at four o’clock. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 1

You will see by the mass of matter that I have sent you that there will not be a dearth at present, and now I hope that I can make some headway on the Life of Christ. Take this matter and prepare it, putting it into the best shape possible, and then send a copy to me and [to] Elder Olsen. Get someone to do the copying, for the matter is important, and with help you can do it quicker. Do what you can without placing yourselves in danger of nervous prostration, and be assured, I shall know you have done your best. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 2

There should be some things put in pamphlet form, so that we could have them to distribute. The points on temperance we need everywhere. Gisborne is the most intemperate place I know of; but temperance is a live question here, and could we have been supplied with tracts on temperance, and distributed them, it would have opened the way before us wonderfully. My speaking twice in the open air has been the means of awakening an interest that nothing else would. They see the marked contrast in the conducting of our meetings and the boisterous, theatrical performance of the salvation army, and they marvel at the order, the solemnity, and deep interest that characterizes our meetings. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 3

We need leaflets in our camp meetings that contain sharp jots and tittles on important points of our faith, such as the Sabbath question. There is not one half the attention and pains given to this that [there] should be. Also on the preservation of the law of God in the ark, its immutability, its surviving the cross, and its force needs to be dwelt upon. Another point that needs to be clearly defined is the wicked apostasy from the Law of God, and the neglect to follow the special directions, given by Jesus Christ Himself to ancient Israel, to teach diligently to their children the commandments of God. And the sure result in doing this? They would maintain that relation to God [so] that His promised blessing would come upon them when they rise up and sit down, and when they go out and come in, and the sure promise that they would be preserved from sickness, that their bread and water would be sure, [and] that their enemies should not prevail against them. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 4

Their prosperity depends upon their obedience, because they would then [be] working in harmony with God, and their course of action would be of that [same] character as the mind of God, and His purposes would be carried out. If they were careless and disobedient, the results could be only of the same character as the transgression of Adam and Eve. The deterioration of character is the result of continual transgression. The departure from God’s way and God’s expressed will is throwing their influence on Satan’s side, and strengthening the synagogue of Satan, and giving them the attributes and character of Satan. Well, the result is less and less of the blessing and power of God, and more and more of the deep plottings of Satan, and the perversion of God’s blessing, and the misinterpretation of His will and of His ways. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 5

Thus children are educated in the home life as transgressors. The people are educated by the ministers from their pulpits to perpetuate their transgression of the law of God, and children, and children’s children, are coming up confirmed in transgression, until the contempt shown to the law of God is almost worldwide in being general and determined. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 6

“Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.” [Isaiah 58:1.] There is to be more decided work done in this line, more done to specify the sin of this age and awaken the minds of the honest, and those who have become confused by their teachers who have darkened counsel by their words, and put darkness for light, and light for darkness, bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 7

Now, do see if something cannot be prepared at once in leaflet or pamphlet form for distribution. We have no time to lose. We are, it seems to me, drifting away, careless and half-paralyzed. We must not be satisfied to do the large things, for the little jots and tittles will fill in, and do a work that the large things will never do. Not a stone must be left for people to stumble over. The ministers are placing stumbling stones in the way to the city of refuge, and many souls are being misguided, also, by being pointed into wrong paths. It is no time now to be dull, no time now to whisper danger. “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression and the house of Jacob their sins.” [Verse 1.] Lift up our ensign to the people, something that can be seen, something that will show them correct, safe paths. There are lost sheep everywhere, whichever way we may turn. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 8

Let every worker in the Master’s vineyard study, plan, devise methods to reach the people where they are. We must do something out of the common course of things. We must arrest the attention. We must be deadly in earnest. We are on the very verge of times of trouble and perplexities that are scarcely dreamed of. I read in yesterday’s paper of a father of a four-year-old child who would not stop crying at his command, and because of this disobedience the father broke its legs and its neck. This is only a sample of [what] we will see. The Spirit of the Lord is being withdrawn from the earth. Mercy’s sweet voice will soon no longer be heard in entreaties and invitations. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 9

The invitation to the marriage supper of the Lamb has been refused, excuses made: one must go to prove his oxen, another to see his land, and another has married him a wife and declares he cannot come. But the commission is given, Go ye into the highways and hedges, into all the lanes of the city and compel them to come in that my house may be filled. The Saviour said to the Jews that they had resisted the invitations of mercy, and publicans and harlots would go into the kingdom of heaven before them, while they who boasted so much piety would be cast out. [Matthew 21:31.] 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 10

The whole human race belongs to God by creation and redemption. They have, through the influence of the great apostasy, misinterpreted and falsified the character of God. Christ came to represent the Father. It behooved the Son of God to come into the world, and to suffer and die for fallen man. He came to bring the one lost sheep back to the Father with rejoicing. And the Pharisees and scribes murmured at Christ because His congregations were composed of publicans and sinners who were in that vicinity. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 11

Those who represented themselves as the best and holiest were represented of John, as they came to his baptism, a generation of vipers, for their works were such that they hated Christ and refused to listen to Him. When sinners were attracted and deeply convicted by His words of truth, they answered the cavils of his opponents, “Never man spake like this man.” [John 7:46.] O, how they hated, not only Christ, but all who listened to his gracious words. They refused to hear him and believe and be saved, and it hurt them terribly that poor sinners should hear him that they might be saved. The words came forth from their hypocritical accusing lips, This man receiveth sinners and eateth with them. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 12

May the Lord pour upon us the spirit of true labor, to seek and to save that which is lost. Let us seek power from God. Let us work with determined effort. We are to work in Christ’s lines. In the recovering of lost, perishing souls, it is not man that effects the work of saving souls, it is God who labors with him. God works and man works. “Ye are laborers together with God.” [1 Corinthians 3:9.] We must work in different ways and devise different methods, and let God work in us to the revealing of truth and Himself as the sin pardoning Saviour. Again I urge [that] the sanctified qualification of every soul be brought into working order. Let your light shine, let truth triumph. We must awake. We must pray. We must never rest until we are imbued with the Spirit of God. Christ must be formed within, “the hope of glory.” [Colossians 1:27.] It is time to awake out of sleep and have our lamps trimmed and burning. May God give us wisdom to work intelligently. 8LtMs, Lt 20, 1893, par. 13