Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 11 (1896)

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Ms 73, 1896

The Manifest Working of the Holy Spirit at Battle Creek College

NP

April 30, 1896

This manuscript is published in entirety in SpTEd 77-83.

“Then Jesus said unto them, yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth. While ye have light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children of the light.” [John 12:35, 36.] Some men in the Battle Creek college have had a false idea as to what constitutes duty. The Lord God of heaven had caused His Holy Spirit from time to time to move upon the students in the school, that they might acknowledge Him in all their ways, so that He might direct their paths. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 1

At times the manifestation of the Holy Spirit has been so decided that studies were forgotten, and the greatest Teacher the world ever knew made His voice heard, saying, “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 in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls: for my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” [Matthew 11:28-30.] The Lord knocked at the door of hearts, and I saw that angels of God were present. There seemed to be no special effort on the part of the teachers to influence these students to give their attention to the things of God; but God had a Watcher in the school, and though His presence was unseen, yet His influence was discernable. Again and again there has been manifest tokens of the presence of the holy Watchman in the school. Again and again the voice of Jesus has spoken to the students saying, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock, if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” [Revelation 3:20.] 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 2

The Lord has been waiting long to impart the greatest, truest joys to the heart. All those who look to Him with undivided hearts He will greatly bless. Those who have thus looked to Him have caught more distinct views of Jesus as their Sin-bearer, their all-sufficient sacrifice, and have been hid in the cleft of the rock to behold the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world. When we have a sense of His all-sufficient sacrifice, our lips are tuned to the highest, loftiest themes of praise. When the students thus behold Jesus, the suspension of their studies was counted as no loss. They were catching glimpses of Him who is invisible. They earnestly sought the living God, and the live coal of pardon was placed upon their lips. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 3

The Holy Spirit wrought not only for those who had lost their first love, but also for souls who had never placed themselves on the Lord’s side. The holy Watcher drew these souls that there might be an ingathering to Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit wrought so that the Lord’s presence could be distinguished, and His work acknowledged. Tokens of His grace and favor called forth rejoicing from the hearts of those who were thus blessed, and it was known that the salvation of God was among His people. The bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness was shining into the chambers of the heart and mind. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 4

The manifestation of the Holy Spirit was similar to its manifestation in the days of Samuel and Saul in the school of the prophets. On one occasion the showers of grace were outpoured, and all that were gathered together were prophesying. Saul drew near, and though when he came he was filled with a restless, envious, jealous spirit because of David, yet he caught the spirit that was animating those who were praising God, and he also sang praises. The word of inquiry went out, “Is Saul also among the prophets?” [1 Samuel 19:24.] The Lord would be glorified if hallelujahs of rejoicing were heard in our schools. The willing and obedient who have received the teaching of the Holy Spirit will rejoice in the Lord, saying, “O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good, and his mercy endureth forever.” [Psalm 106:1.] 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 5

If the people of God rightly appreciated the temporal and spiritual blessings which the Lord has poured upon them through Jesus Christ, continual praise would be upon their lips. We have had an experience in being relieved from spiritual bondage similar to that of the Israelites who were set free from the bondage of Egypt. Have we not had chains of oppression broken, and Red Seas of impossibilities opened up before us? Have we not been fed with manna from heaven? Have not the words of Christ come home to the soul, “This is the bread which cometh down from heaven that a man may eat thereof and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If any man eat of this bread he shall live forever: and the bread which I shall give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.” [John 6:50, 51.] We are to continually feast upon this heavenly manna. We are to drink continually of the Water of life. Jesus says, “If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink.” [John 7:37.] 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 6

Would it not be well for us to observe holidays unto God, when we could revive in our mind the memory of His dealing with us? Would it not be well to consider His past blessings, to remember the impressive warnings that have come home to our souls so that we shall not forget God? The world has many holidays, and men become engrossed with games, with horse races, with gambling, smoking and drunkenness. They show plainly under what banner they are standing. They make it evident that they do not stand under the banner of the Prince of life, but that the prince of darkness rules and controls them. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 7

Shall not the people of God more frequently have holy convocations in which to thank God for His rich blessings? Shall we not find time in which to praise Christ for His rest, peace, and joy, and make manifest by daily thanksgiving that we appreciate the great sacrifice made in our behalf, that we may be partakers of the divine nature? Shall we not speak of the prospective rest in the Paradise of God, and tell of the honor and glory in store for the servants of Jehovah? “My people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.” [Isaiah 32:18.] We are homeward bound, seeking a better country, even an heavenly. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 8

The world is full of excitement. Men act as though they had gone mad over low, cheap, unsatisfying things. How excited have I seen them over the result of a cricket match! I have seen the streets in Sydney densely crowded for blocks, and on inquiring what was the occasion of the excitement, was told that it was because some expert player of cricket had won the game. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 9

I felt disgusted. Why are not the chosen of God more enthusiastic? They are striving for an immortal crown, striving for a home where there will be no need of the light, of the sun or moon, or of lighted candle, for the Lord God giveth them light, and they shall reign forever and ever. They will have a life that measures with the life of God; but the candle of the wicked shall be put out in ignominious darkness, and then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in kingdom of their Father. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 10

Why should we not expect the holy Watcher to come into our schools? Our youth are there to receive an education so that they may do all in their power to acquire a knowledge of the Most High God, and to make Him known as the only true God. They are there to learn how to present Christ as a sin-pardoning Savior. They are there to gather up precious rays of light, in order that they may diffuse light again. They are there to show forth the loving kindness of the Lord, to speak of His glory, to sound forth the praises of Him who hath called us out of darkness into His marvelous light. Those who are faithful will be clothed with white robes, will have palms of victory in their hands, and will stand in the heavenly courts. John says, “I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; and cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.” [Revelation 7:9, 10.] 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 11

Again and again the heavenly messenger has been sent to the school. When His presence has been acknowledged the darkness has fled away and the light has shone forth, and hearts have been drawn to God. The last words spoken by Christ to John were, “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” [Revelation 22:17.] When we respond to God, and say, “Lord, we come,” then with joy will we draw water out of the wells of salvation. Shall we not keep holy festivals unto God? Shall we not show that we have some enthusiasm in His service? With the grand ennobling theme of salvation before us, shall we be as cold as statues of marble? If men can become so excited over a cricket match, or a horse race, or over foolish things that bring no good to anyone, shall we be unmoved when the plan of salvation is unfolded before us? Let the school and the church henceforth have festivals of rejoicing unto the Lord. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 12

I do not recommend pleasure parties where young people assemble together for mere amusement, to engage in cheap, nonsensical talk, and where loud boisterous laughter is to be heard. I do not recommend this kind of a gathering, where there is a letting down of dignity and the scene as one of weakness and folly. Many times young men for whom heavenly intelligences have been waiting in order to number them as missionaries for God, are drawn into the gatherings for amusements and are carried away with Satan’s fascinations. Instead of being afraid to continue their association with girls whose depth of mind is easily measured, whose character is of a cheap order, they become enamored of them, and enter into an engagement. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 13

Satan knows that if these young men enter into an engagement with cheap minded, pleasure-loving, worldly-minded, irreligious young women, they will bind themselves to stumbling blocks. Their usefulness will be largely crippled if not utterly destroyed. If the young men themselves succeed in making an unreserved surrender to God, yet they will find that they are greatly crippled by being bound to an untrained, undisciplined, un-Christlike wife, who is dead to God, dead to piety, and dead to true holiness. Their lives will prove unsatisfying and unhappy. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 14

These gatherings for amusement confuse faith, and make the motive mixed and uncertain. The Lord accepts no divided heart. He wants the whole man. He made all there is of man. He offered a complete sacrifice to redeem the body and soul of man. That which He requires of those whom He has created and redeemed is summed up in these words, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind ... Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” [Matthew 22:37-39.] God will accept nothing less than this. 11LtMs, Ms 73, 1896, par. 15