Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 10 (1895)


Lt 51, 1895

McCullagh, S.

Armadale, Melbourne, Australia

November 7, 1895

Portions of this letter are published in 2BC 995-996; 4Bio 233; CTr 136.

Dear Brother McCullagh:

We received your letter last Thursday, which was yesterday. We thank you for writing so fully as you have done in regard to Byron Belden. We were shocked to hear of his death. We had no intimation that his lungs were any affected. I had strong hope that Byron would make a man of usefulness. His perceptives were large, his organs of order and system were large. He was not forward and obtrusive. He understood his place, and kept it. His benevolence was largely developed. He had kindness, sympathy, and pity in a large degree. He would divide his clothing and his food even if he knew not where his next supply would come from. Whatever he set his hand to was done with diligence and whole-heartedness. Faithful in that which was least made him faithful in larger responsibilities. He was beloved by all who were acquainted with him, and we shall all miss him. [He was] always willing to do anything that needed to be done. We look upon him as among the precious ones who sleep in Jesus. “And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels. And I will spare them as a man spareth his son that serveth him.” [Malachi 3:17.] 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 1

I counted much upon Byron as making one of our best and most trustful laborers. Although we cannot discern why Byron should be laid aside, yet we will not complain for the Lord knoweth what is best. That which we do not know now we shall know hereafter. One thing we are sorrowfully made to know is that the work that he designed to do is left for another worker to take up and carry forward. Who shall it be? 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 2

“And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors; and their works do follow them.” [Revelation 14:13.] Sister Belden has shared the labors of her husband. They were of one mind; heart and soul blended together in the work to do all in their power to win souls to Christ. Sarah Belden lives. Her great anxiety is that the work her husband was engaged in may be carried forward to perfection and not left to ravel out. 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 3

We had a long letter written by Byron’s pen a few days before his death in reference to his plans and methods. This was received by W. C. White on the campground of Armadale the day that Byron died. We shall carefully preserve this letter, the last from his hand. We feel deeply in regard to this dispensation of Providence. I do not think that it was wise for him to have attempted to do that which he did do—get up from his bed and go out to work. But thus he has been in the habit of doing, not to care for or consider himself, but suffer uncomplainingly. The cause of God was his highest interest. He has given his life to the Master. The Lord has accepted the sacrifice, and we will not in thought take it from the altar. Sarah must now become a member of my family. 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 4

November 13

The work here has been going forward steadily increasing in interest. Last Sunday Elder Corliss spoke in the forenoon and I spoke in the afternoon to a tent full, and a wall of people around the tent. I spoke on the sufferings of Christ, and there seemed to be an intense interest. Up to this time I have spoken fourteen times at length, and several times given short talks. In the evening Elder Prescott preached. The tent was full, and scores, it is reported, could not get under the canvas and went away. Monday night a good congregation; Tuesday night, not so large a turn out; Elder Daniells spoke to the people. I speak again this evening upon the subject of temperance. We cannot now gather in the sheaves. It takes the people in the Colonies a long time to make up their minds to obey; but while the interest is at its height, we cannot move our place of meeting. We must hold the fort if possible. 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 5

There is a man by the name of Steward, whose son and wife I believe keep the Sabbath. I know the son does, for he stated that he had a son keeping the Sabbath who had the Scripture at his tongue’s end, and knew how to use the Scriptures. Then he stated that he himself had been a Seventh-day Adventist. He uses the same weapons that Canright uses, misrepresentations and falsehoods. But this man has taken it upon [himself] to ape Picton in Sydney; but he cannot harm the truth. He cannot do anything against the truth, but for it. He is circulating Canright’s books. He stations himself on the paddock nearly opposite the campground just at the close of our meetings, and some of the crowd go to these meetings, but he is doing nothing special. He mentioned my name in an objectionable light, and one man who had attended the tent meetings said he would give more for one fiber of Mrs. White’s brain than he would for his whole brain and body, then many voices hissed him for attacking a woman. 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 6

We have seen the power of God in human vessels as they have presented the truth at these meetings. Several have decided to keep the Sabbath, but there have been such crowds that have been to the meetings it is impossible to know in regard to those who are convinced of the truth and who will obey. It will take much personal labor. We have not seen, even in America, as large a class of such noble looking persons out to hear and manifest so intense an interest as we have seen here on this ground. We have not the mammoth tent as in America and have not the seating capacity; many, very many have to stand, but the Lord is in our midst. “He that hath my commandments and keepeth them he it is that loveth me; and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him and will manifest myself unto him.” [John 14:21.] What a precious promise! Claim it we will, and we will act faith, talk faith and work constantly, saying, I will not limit the Holy One of Israel. I will be true to my Master. 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 7

Brother McCullagh, reach forth the hand of faith, and lay hold of the inimitable promise of Jehovah. Trust in God every moment for physical strength, for mental clearness, and spiritual power. We feel cut to the soul because of the disappointment of our beloved nephew’s sudden death. But we will not flag in interest now. We will not stop to mourn over one who sleeps in Jesus. We will go forward doing the work he would have done had he lived. Jesus is a resurrected Saviour. Jesus proclaimed to John in no whispering tones but with a loud voice as of a trumpet, saying, “I am he that liveth, and was dead; and behold I am alive forevermore. Amen! and have the keys of hell and of death.” [Revelation 1:18.] Thank God, Jesus liveth forevermore! We have a living Saviour. 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 8

Our Lord is cognizant of the conflict of His people in these last days with the satanic agencies combined with evil men who neglect and refuse this great salvation. With the greatest simplicity and candor our Saviour, the Mighty General of the armies of heaven, does not conceal the stern conflict which they will experience. He points out the dangers, He shows us the plan of the battle, and the hard and hazardous work to be done, and then lifts His voice before entering the conflict to count the cost while at the same time He encourages all to take up the weapons of their warfare and expect the heavenly host to compose the armies to war in defense of truth and righteousness. 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 9

Men’s weakness shall find supernatural strength and help in every stern conflict to do the deeds of Omnipotence, and perseverance in faith and perfect trust in God will ensure success. While the vast confederacy of evil is arrayed against them He bids them to be brave and strong and fight valiantly, for they have a heaven to win, and they have more than an angel in their ranks, the mighty General of armies leads on the armies of heaven. As on the occasion of the taking of Jericho, not one of the armies of Israel could boast of exercising their finite strength to overthrow the walls of this city, but the Captain of the Lord’s Host planned that battle in the greatest simplicity, that the Lord God alone should receive the glory and man should not be exalted. God has promised us all power. “For the promise is unto you and your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.” [Acts 2:39.] 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 10

It is not great talent that we want now, it is humble hearts and direct, consecrated, personal effort, watching, praying, working with all perseverance. The sins of the people may seem so offensive to God as to be invincible, but Christ has sent His representative, the Holy Spirit, surrounding His living agents who are employed to pierce the ignorance with the bright beams of the Son of Righteousness. His voice will give assurance, “Lo I am with you alway, even to the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:20.] The fact is to be ever kept before us, we are carrying forward the warfare in the presence of an invisible world. 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 11

We are all to calmly depend upon God as we look upon the obstacles and stubborn unbelief, and consider all the risks that must be ventured and then listen to the voice of Jesus, “Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” [John 16:33.] Yes, Christ is conqueror. He is our Leader, our Captain, and we can advance to the victory. Because He lives, we shall live also. May God give you courage, and faith, and hope, and strength, and grace to press onward. 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 12

Much prayer is offered in your behalf. 10LtMs, Lt 51, 1895, par. 13