Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 10 (1895)


Lt 26, 1895

Haskell, S. N.

Norfolk Villa, Prospect St., Granville, Australia

October 11, 1895

See also Lt 100, 1895. Portions of this letter are published in 3SM 324.

Dear Brother:

I have written a letter to Brother Henry Wessells, and will send you a copy of the same. I have thought in writing it how much there is to learn from the great lesson book that has been given us by our heavenly Father, and I am so sorry we are so slow in learning our lessons. I am glad you are still in Africa. There is no reason why you should feel lonely or in any way discouraged. The representative of Christ is your companion. Daily you may avail yourself of the invitation, “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly of heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” [Matthew 11:28-30.] 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 1

When you begin to feel despondent, look unto Jesus, and commune with Him. When you think your brethren misunderstand you, remember that Jesus your Elder Brother, never makes a mistake. He will judge righteously. The words of Christ, uttered in the great day of the feast, have a wonderful meaning and power. He lifted up His voice and said, “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.” [John 7:37.] We are not to be driven to Christ. It is our part to come, to make our own choice and come to the fountain of life. Why should we not come to Christ, for in Him our hope of eternal life is centered. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 2

The lessons that have come to us through Christ are not oft repeated maxims, they are full of vital thought. But it is our part to appropriate divine truth. The apostle Paul exhorts us to lay hold on the hope set before us in the gospel. By faith we are to appropriate the promises of God, and to provide ourselves with the abundant blessings which have been secured for us through Christ Jesus. Hope has been set before us, even the hope of eternal life. Nothing short of this blessing for us will satisfy our Redeemer, but it is our part to lay hold upon this hope by faith in Him [who] has promised. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 3

We may expect to suffer, for it is those who are partakers with Him in His sufferings who shall be partakers with Him in His glory. He has purchased forgiveness and immortality for the sinful, perishing souls of men; but it is our part to receive these gifts by faith. Believing in Him, we have this hope as an anchor of the soul, sure and steadfast. We are to understand that we may confidently accept God’s favor not only in this world, but in the heavenly world, since He paid such a price for our salvation. Faith in the atonement and intercession of Christ will keep us steadfast and unmovable amid the temptations that press upon us in the church militant. Let us contemplate the glorious hope that is set before us, and by faith lay hold upon it. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 4

We must not permit Satan to cast his hellish shadow athwart our pathway, and accomplish his purpose of eclipsing the bright views of our future reward. Let us not look upon his shadow of darkness. We gain heaven not through our own merits, but through the merits of Jesus Christ. We cannot find salvation in our own individual selves, we are to look unto Jesus who is the Author and Finisher of our faith, and as we look, we live. Satan would point us to ourselves, and seek to make us feel that we must bear our own sins. How hard poor mortals strive to be sin-bearers for themselves and for others, but the only Sin-bearer is Jesus Christ. He alone can be my Substitute and Sin-bearer. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 5

The forerunner of Christ exclaimed, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sins of the world.” [John 1:29.] Shall we not give up our sins, and let them go? Shall we not turn from them and hate them, and still remember that Christ regards His human agents as of great value? We cannot calculate the estimate placed upon the soul. Then take your eyes off of yourself, and encourage hope and confidence in Christ. Let your hope not be centered in yourself, but in Him who has entered within the veil. Talk of the blessed hope and the glorious appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 6

It is true that we are exposed to great moral peril; it is true that we are in danger of being corrupted. But this danger threatens us only as we trust in self and look no higher than our own human efforts. In doing this we shall make shipwreck of faith. Our hope of salvation is an anchor to the soul both sure and steadfast, when it entereth into that which is within the veil. Anchored in Christ, the soul, like a ship amid the raging elements, tempest-tossed and driven, is immovable. It is not driven on the rocks or drawn into the whirlpool. “Wherefore didst thou doubt?” said Christ to the sinking Peter. [Matthew 14:31.] The same question may be addressed to us. Why do we dishonor God with our shameful unbelief? 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 7

The Lord has pledged Himself to give us strength to enable us to stand. As we search the Scriptures we find ground for confidence, provision for sufficiency. It is our privilege to say boldly, yet humbly, The Lord is my helper, therefore I shall not be moved from my steadfastness. My life is hid with Christ in God. Because He lives, I shall live also. Brother Haskell, let us pledge ourselves before God and the angels of heaven that we will not dishonor God by speaking words of discouragement or unbelief. If we talk faith, we shall have faith, we shall be confirmed in faith. Close the door to distrust and open the door wide to faith. Invite into the soul temple the heavenly Guest. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 8

Let every word we utter, every line we trace with the pen, give evidence of unwavering faith. Let us not think that Jesus is someone else’s Saviour, but that He is our personal friend. Entertain the precious thought that Jesus loves me. In this way the cloud of despondency and gloom will be rolled back from the soul, and we shall be enabled to make melody in our hearts unto God. We may triumph in the Lord, every day acknowledging the fact that our heavenly treasure, our everlasting portion, is sure to us through the atonement and righteousness of Jesus Christ. Believing this ourselves, we shall be able to aid others to see that their only help is in God, and encourage them to flee for refuge to Christ, laying hold in the hope set before them in the gospel. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 9

Brother Haskell, you need never feel that you are alone. Angels are your companions. The Comforter that Jesus Christ promised to send in His name abides with you. Christ said of His followers, “Ye are the light of the world.” [Matthew 5:14.] It is your part to let the light shine forth in clear steady rays. Let your good works represent Christ. How many there are who feel that it would be a great thing to tread the soil of old Jerusalem, and that their faith would be greatly strengthened by visiting the scenes of the Saviour’s life and death. But old Jerusalem will never be a sacred place until it is cleansed by the refining fire from heaven. The darkest blot of guilt rests upon the city that refused the light of Christ. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 10

Do we want to walk in the footsteps of Jesus? We need not seek out the paths in the old Nazareth, Bethany, and Jerusalem. We shall find the footprints of Jesus by the sick bed, by the side of suffering humanity, in the hovels of the poverty-stricken and distressed. We may walk in these footsteps, comforting the suffering, speaking words of hope and comfort to the despondent. Doing as Jesus did when he was upon earth, we shall walk in His blessed steps. Jesus said, “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.” [Luke 9:23.] When the sin-cursed earth is purified from every stain of sin, when the Mount of Olives is rent asunder and becomes an immense plain, when the holy city of God descends upon it, the land that is now called the Holy Land will indeed become holy. But God’s cause and work will not be advanced by making pilgrimages to Jerusalem. The curse of God is upon Jerusalem for the rejection and crucifixion of His only begotten Son. But God will cleanse away the vile blot. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 11

The prophet says, “I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth are passed away: and the sea is no more. And I saw the Holy City, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of the throne, saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he shall dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God: and he shall wipe away every tear from their eyes; and death shall be no more; neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain, any more: the first things are passed away. And he that sitteth on the throne said, Behold, I make all things new.” [Revelation 21:1-5.] [R.V.] 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 12

I have not been well for many weeks. I have overdone in keeping myself at constant labor, and have felt very weak and exhausted. At times I have had strength to write, and as I write quite rapidly, I have been enabled to pen quite a good deal of matter. My mind has been deeply stirred over many things. It seems to me that light from heaven flashes upon me, and the Holy Spirit brings many things to my remembrance. Important views are clear to my mind’s eye, as though I was looking upon the scene as I wrote. I think I sent you matter in regard to the colored people. Precious light has come to me in regard to proper education, but I do not know whether I have sent any of this to you or not. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 13

I thank you for the money you have sent. I think I shall be able to pay you at any time when you choose to call for it. Demand for money has been very urgent. We find great need of it in carrying forward the school work and buildings, in building a meetinghouse at Ashfield, and in pushing forward the work in new localities. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 14

On Sabbath I shall speak in the city hall at Sydney, and on Sunday afternoon will give the dedication address in the church at Ashfield. Over one hundred have embraced the truth and have been baptized in Ashfield since the camp meeting. Six more are to be baptized on Sunday. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 15

Dear Brother Haskell, you ask me why it is [that] you awake in the night and feel enclosed in darkness? I often feel in the same way myself, but these desponding feelings are no evidence that God has forsaken you or me. We must cultivate faith and hope until it is second nature to believe in the promises of God. Jesus says, “My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” [John 14:27.] The peace spoken of by the great Teacher is larger and fuller than we have imagined. Christ is ready to do large things for us, to restore our natures by making us partakers of His divine nature. He waits to link our hearts with His heart of infinite love, in order that we may be fully reconciled to God. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 16

It is our privilege to understand that God loves us as He loves His Son. When we believe in Christ as our personal Saviour, the peace of Christ is ours. The reconciliation provided for us in the atonement of Christ is the foundation of our peace. But gloomy feelings are no evidence that the promises of God are of no effect. You look at your feelings, and because your outlook is not all brightness, you begin to draw more closely the garment of heaviness about your soul. You look within yourself and think that God is forsaking you. You are to look to Christ. “In me,” Christ says, “ye shall have peace.” [John 16:33.] Entering into communion with our Saviour, we enter the region of peace. Satan is our destroyer, but Christ is our restorer. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 17

We must put faith into constant exercise, and trust in God whatever our feelings may be. Isaiah says, “Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness and hath no light? Let him trust in the name of the Lord, and stay upon his God.” [Isaiah 50:10.] You can say with the Psalmist, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of my enemies: thou anointest my head with oil: my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house for ever.” [Psalm 23:4-6.] 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 18

“Believe in the Lord your God, so shall ye be established; believe his prophets, so shall ye prosper. And when he had consulted with the people, he appointed singers unto the Lord that they should praise the beauties of holiness, and they went out before the army, and said, Praise the Lord: for his mercy endureth for ever. And when they began to sing and to praise, the Lord sent ambushments against the children of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir, which were come against Judah, and they were smitten.” [2 Chronicles 20:20-22.] “Unto you therefore which believe he is precious.” [1 Peter 2:7.] Consider the fact that the Lord has given his only begotten Son, “that whosoever believeth in him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16.] 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 19

God has given Jesus as our Sin-bearer, in order that we may be presented perfect in the merits of Christ before the throne of God. Those who receive Jesus as the Way, the Truth and the Life, are beloved of God even as His only begotten Son is beloved. Jesus died to rescue souls from the bondage of sin, and every one who returns to His loyalty is precious in the sight of God. Our glorious Redeemer who died to secure our eternal happiness is a risen Saviour, who has ascended to the Father. He led captivity, captive, and gave gifts unto men. The administration of His grace is in His hands, and He ever liveth to dispense blessings in abundant measures of grace. He will give power to His children according as their circumstances demand. He says, “Incline your ear, and come unto me: hear, and your soul shall live and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David.” [Isaiah 55:3.] 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 20

“As thy day thy strength shall be.” [Deuteronomy 33:25.] Little annoyances and trials borne with patience, will fit the soul for the endurance of greater trials and more severe tests, but proportionate grace will be given for every trial that shall come upon us. The Saviour says, “These things have I spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” [John 16:33.] 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 21

Satan knows that Christ has purchased redemption for the whole world, and he is determined to wrest from the hand of Christ every soul that he can possibly influence. But believing in Christ, we shall have grace to meet his [Satan’s] temptations. Jesus would have us comforted with faith in His goodness. Whatever may be the tribulation that shall come upon us in the world, yet we are to be of good cheer, knowing that Christ has overcome the world. We will have tribulation in the world, but peace in Jesus Christ. My brother, turn your eyes from within and look to Jesus who is your only helper. 10LtMs, Lt 26, 1895, par. 22