Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 8

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Lt 97, 1893

Friends in Hastings, New Zealand

Gisborne, New Zealand

October 16, 1893

Previously unpublished.

Dear Friends in Hastings,
Beloved Children of God:

I will write you a few words. We had a very pleasant passage to this place, and when we arrived found that there was an appointment out for me to speak the first evening. We had a very intelligent, though not large, congregation. I spoke to them upon the necessity of keeping all the commandments of God, just as God gave them, and explained why we were Seventh-day Adventists. We kept the seventh day because that was the very day God had specified as the day of His rest, whatever interpretation man may place upon it; and placing the first day, in the place of the seventh day, did not convert it as the Sabbath the Lord had set apart and blessed and sanctified the seventh day. Our only security is to take the language of the Bible in its true specification, and obey the fourth commandment just as it reads. 8LtMs, Lt 97, 1893, par. 1

To worship God on a common working day upon which He has placed no sanctity, in our ignorance is not sin, but when light comes to us showing us what is truth, we are to give up error and accept the truth. If God plainly states that He requires one thing, and we present to Him another, claiming for ourselves that it makes no difference, we deceive our own souls to our own ruin, for God will not be trifled with. We see that it is essential that we should every one show our colors and stand fully and entirely under our own standard, which is the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. We are not to do just as the world does and think that this is all that is required. We are to adhere strictly to the Scriptures and are under obligation to God and man to present the subject to others just as God has specified. Not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified. We do not wish to hide our faith or drop our standard because the world will look upon us with disfavor. The favor of God we should prize highly above gold, yes, above fine gold. We are not to meet the world’s standard, for Christ declares the world knew Him not, and because they knew Him not, they will not know His followers. [John 1:10.] We are Adventists. We believe our Lord is soon coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. Said Christ, just before His crucifixion, “Let not your hearts be troubled; ye believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” John 14:1-3. 8LtMs, Lt 97, 1893, par. 2

We believe in a personal Saviour, and that He is coming to our world the second time to be admired in all those who believe. This is our faith, and we are waiting and watching for the appearing of our Lord, and we would be found obedient children to His commandments. We will not evade them. We will not explain them away, but we will be doers of His commandments. 8LtMs, Lt 97, 1893, par. 3

I would present to our people the necessity of standing in moral independence in God. Being not ashamed because we keep the fourth commandment just as it reads for this is an honor to every soul. It is those who evade the truth, who accept a spurious sabbath instead of the genuine, that need to be heartily ashamed of their keeping a day that He has not placed His sanctity upon, and of their departure from God’s commandments. I wish all our friends seeking after the truth could see this subject in the true bearings and never for one moment feel to beg pardon of the world, because they will be loyal children to do ... [several lines illegible]. 8LtMs, Lt 97, 1893, par. 4

Sabbath forenoon, October 14, I spoke to the people from (John 14), presenting before them the manifest love of God for all the world, and [how] when we draw nigh to God He always responds and draws nigh to us. Not one takes a step toward Jesus, but He advances toward them. I presented the dangers of a half and half service. This kind of serving God is no satisfaction to our own souls, and in no way pleases Him who hath bought us with His own precious blood. Children as well as the parents should give themselves without reserve to the Lord and He will accept them. The Lord came near to us, our hearts were softened by His Holy Spirit, and it had a subduing influence upon the hearts of all present. 8LtMs, Lt 97, 1893, par. 5

We see that the prejudice was very great, and Satan was working to the strength of his power that we should have no influence in this place. The ministers we find in every place we have tried to labor refuse to search the Scriptures with a teachable spirit, having prejudice at the door in beginning their investigation of the Word of God. They feel indignant at the proposition to come with sincere, candid minds to investigate evidences. Like the Pharisees, they are determined to close every avenue whereby light should find entrance, and they then try with persevering effort that they may induce every one to treat the message and the messenger whom God sends with contempt. They are ... [last page illegible.] 8LtMs, Lt 97, 1893, par. 6