Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 8

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Lt 7, 1893

Brethren and Sisters in Australia

NP

November 1893

This letter is published in entirety in BEcho 12/08/1893.

Dear brethren and sisters in Australia,

The first Australian camp meeting among us as a people is about to take place, and I would urge you all to be present. This meeting will mark a new era in the history of the work of God in this field, and it is important that every member of our churches should be at the camp meeting. The enemies of truth are many, and though our numbers are few, we should present as good a front as possible. Individually you need the benefits of the meeting, and God calls upon you to number [as] one in the ranks of truth. 8LtMs, Lt 7, 1893, par. 1

I am afraid that some will say, “It is expensive to travel, and it would be better for me to save the money and give it for the advancement of the work, where it is so much needed.” Do not reason in this way, for God calls upon you to take your place among the rank and file of His people. You are to strengthen the meeting all you possibly can and be there in person. Let no one say, “I will remain at home, and let some one else go,” for we want to see you and the some body else as well. Let no stay-away argument be used. We know that the believers in the truth are scattered widely, but make no excuse that will keep you from gaining every spiritual advantage possible. Come to the meeting and bring your families. Put forth extra exertions and be at the gathering of God’s people. 8LtMs, Lt 7, 1893, par. 2

Brethren and sisters, it would be better, far better, for you to let your business suffer than for you to neglect the opportunity now offered you to hear the message that God has for you at this time. You need every ray of light, for you are acquainted with the truth only in a measure, and need to become better qualified to give a reason for the hope that is in you with meekness and fear. Come with your Bibles in your hands. You cannot afford to lose one such a privilege as you are now favored with, and we entreat you not to disappoint us by not coming to the meeting. We look upon this time as a time when it is important for every one to come up to the help of the Lord, to the help of the Lord against the mighty. 8LtMs, Lt 7, 1893, par. 3

The forces of the enemy are strengthening, and as a people we are misrepresented; but shall we not gather our forces together and come up to the feast of the tabernacles? Let us not treat this matter as one of little importance, but let the army of the Lord be on the ground to represent the work and cause of God in Australia. Let no one plead an excuse at such a time. One of the reasons why we have appointed the camp meeting to be held at Melbourne, is because we desire that the people of the vicinity shall become acquainted with our doctrines and works. We want them to know what we are and what we believe. We desire to make as favorable an impression upon them as possible. Let every one pray and make God his trust. The people who are barricaded with prejudice must hear the warning message for this time. We must find our way to the hearts of the people. Therefore come to the camp meeting, even though you have to make a sacrifice to do it, and the Lord will bless your efforts to honor His cause and advance His work. 8LtMs, Lt 7, 1893, par. 4

The Lord has need of you. He does not do His work without the co-operation of the human agent. God’s downtrodden law is to be uplifted, Christ and His righteousness are to be presented to souls that are perishing. The blindness, the spiritual blindness, upon the people today is greater even than it was in the days when Christ was upon earth in person. Let every one rally round the standard, and angels who are commissioned to minister for those who shall be heirs of salvation will accompany you. Make every effort to get your friends to come, not in your place, but to come with you, to stand on the Lord’s side, to obey His commands. At the best, our numbers will be but small; but come with a mind and will to work, and God will do great things for us. While we see the schemes that the enemy is devising to shut away the light from the people, let the prayer go forth from unfeigned lips, “Hear, O our God; for we are despised.” “Think upon me my God for good.” “Now therefore, O God, strengthen my hands.” [Nehemiah 4:4; 5:19; 6:9.] 8LtMs, Lt 7, 1893, par. 5

We should use every power at our command to make this meeting a success and suit it to the needs of those who shall attend. The work of the Lord is above every temporal interest, and we must not misrepresent the cause of God. Watching, waiting, working must be our motto. There is no need of being fainthearted and fearful, for nothing can harm us if the Lord God of hosts is with us. Every soul should wake out of sleep, and put on the whole armor of God. God has committed to our hands a most sacred work, and we need to meet together and receive instruction as to what is personal religion and family piety; we need to understand what part we shall individually be called upon to act in the grand and important work of building up the cause and work of God in the earth, in vindicating God’s holy law, and in lifting up the Saviour as “the Lamb of God which taketh away the sins of the world.” [John 1:29.] We need to meet together and receive the divine touch, that we may understand our work in the home. 8LtMs, Lt 7, 1893, par. 6

Parents need to understand how they may send forth from the sanctuary of the home Christian children, trained and educated so that they shall be fitted to shine in the world. We need the Holy Spirit in order that we may not misrepresent our faith. We need to understand in regard to the division of labor, and how each part is to be carried forward. Each one should understand the part he is to act, and there should be harmony of aim and execution in the combined work of all. Each one needs to concentrate his energies on the portion of the work he is required to build up, in order that no labor may be lost, that there be no jostling, no crossing of one another’s paths. 8LtMs, Lt 7, 1893, par. 7

The laborers together with God must put forth consecrated tact and do their utmost that there shall be no waste of energy or means. Each individual is to rejoice in the success of his brother laborer, and realize that he himself is co-operating with heavenly agencies for the advancement of the cause of truth which is under the generalship of Jesus Christ. “For ye are laborers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.” [1 Corinthians 3:9.] 8LtMs, Lt 7, 1893, par. 8

It is now fully time that an advance move was made in Australia. We shall have to meet every form of opposition, and every manner of hindrance; the history of the past will be repeated. It is not evidence of the truth of our cause that our enemies want, for they are filled with fierce opposition to the truth itself, because they cannot controvert it. There are enemies with out who are organized to stop the work of God; but let us move forward with well concentrated effort and overcome every difficulty. We must reach the people where they are; for the reproach cast upon God’s messengers must be counteracted, and it will be. 8LtMs, Lt 7, 1893, par. 9

I urge you therefore for the truth’s sake, for Christ’s sake, to come up to this meeting. Elder Olsen and other helpers from America will be with us, and we want to have a heavenly sitting together in Christ Jesus. Thus a rich reward will come to the people. I beseech you to respond to these words in person. Let there be a waking among believers. Let each one be imbued with the spirit of the work, that like Nehemiah we all may possess holy energy, faith, and hope, and depending wholly upon God, be able to strengthen one another in the great work committed to our hands. 8LtMs, Lt 7, 1893, par. 10