Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 8 (1893)


Lt 18, 1893

Daniells, Elder and Mrs. A. G.

Wellington, New Zealand

May 11, 1893

Portions of this letter are published in Ev 439-440.

Elder and Mrs. A. G. Daniells
No. 2 Cook’s Street
Glebe Point, Sydney

Dear Brother and Sister:

I have been unable to sleep past four a.m., and between that and breakfast time I manage to do much writing. We have breakfast at 7:30. We hardly know how to describe matters as they are here. Our congregations are quite small, and prejudice exists to a remarkable extent. We work on, however, trying to act our part as faithful messengers of the Lord God of hosts. We have a message to bear of the utmost importance. 8LtMs, Lt 18, 1893, par. 1

I spoke two Sunday afternoons with a goodly number out to hear; but I spoke yesterday afternoon on the relation of fathers and mothers to their children and youth, and the congregation was quite small. Only 45 were present. The presence of the Lord was certainly in our midst; hearts were touched, and hundreds ought to have heard the words I had for them. Our effort may show no manifest results; but I consider Jesus the world’s Redeemer. Of Him it was said, “I will not fail nor be discouraged.” [Isaiah 42:4.] We want the mind of Christ to work in His lines. 8LtMs, Lt 18, 1893, par. 2

I have spoken in Petone three times. The last time was Tuesday, May 2, at 7:30 in the evening. A goodly number was present. Brother Simpson said it was the largest congregation that any of our people have ever had in Petone. All were pleased, and much prejudice was removed. It makes it bad that we have no hold upon the people here. All are strangers to us. Visiting is done by Elder Starr and his wife, whenever they can get an entrance. They receive him and promise to come to the meetings; but they do not come. They seem to act as if they were afraid their minds would become stirred up, and they use the stay-away argument. We have the rink hired for few more meetings. Elder Starr leaves for Melbourne on Monday, and we think of hiring a smaller hall, and we think we shall more easily get at the few interested ones. We shall soon see what can be done for them. 8LtMs, Lt 18, 1893, par. 3

The Lord God Omnipotent reigneth. The work and cause is the Lord’s, and He can work upon human hearts. The Lord has a people in this place, and He has a warning message for this people, and He will not have His word return to Him in vain. One thing we must do and that is to go forward. Work on the right hand and on the left. Sow beside all waters knowing not whither shall prosper this or that. How long it is best to work, not by sight but by faith, for the few, trusting the Lord to water the seed sown, we know not. There is a great work to be done in New Zealand, and we dare not leave this field to return to Sydney or Melbourne until we have clearer light. There is time we must give to Napier, Hastings, Ormondville. The latter place I am urgently requested to visit. 8LtMs, Lt 18, 1893, par. 4

We want you to write us as definitely as possible in regard to the work in Paremata. We know from the light the Lord has given me that there are other fields nigh that have heard the sound of the message that are to be worked. The Lord gives His workmen courage and perseverance and heavenly wisdom and the endowment of the Holy Spirit, that the truth may be accepted, believed, and practiced by many more souls. One thing I know we must have, and that is faith combined with most earnest, diligent preaching of the Word of God in its real simplicity. We must embrace every opportunity to put forth personal labor. The personal labor must be done, even if there has to be less preaching done. Here in New Zealand you, my brother, and others who have labored here, have failed. We must get acquainted with the people in their homes. You can never supply this by proxy. This has been attempted, but God can never sanction any such work. Brother Hare has done this work, and you did it also, but it is a sad mistake. 8LtMs, Lt 18, 1893, par. 5

If far less preaching has to be done, this part of the pastoral work is not to be neglected nor shifted upon your wives nor some other person. You must educate and train yourselves to visit every family that you can possibly get access to. The results of this work will testify that it is the most profitable work a gospel minister can do. If he neglects this work, the visiting of the people in their homes, he is an unfaithful shepherd, and the rebuke of God is upon him. His work is not half done. If he had given personal labor, there would have been a large work done and many souls gathered. 8LtMs, Lt 18, 1893, par. 6

No excuse will God accept for thus neglecting the most essential part of the ministry, which is the properly binding off of the work, and binding the messenger bearing the truth up with the flock, the sheep and the lambs of the Lord’s pasture. The Lord Himself makes the human instrument a channel of light to the people, through his personal efforts, in identifying himself with the people for whom he is laboring. The weak of the flock need strengthening at the right time—words spoken that will comfort, strengthen, and establish them that they will become rooted, grounded, and established in the faith. This is the way and the means God has ordained to meet the people where they are. I recognize, in the places where I have thus far labored, the very places which have been lost to the cause of God because the messengers who have brought to them the truth have not ministered because it was not pleasant business to engage in this work. 8LtMs, Lt 18, 1893, par. 7