Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 11 (1896)

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Lt 96, 1896

Smith, Uriah

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

June 6, 1896

This letter is published in entirety in 1SM 234-235.

Dear Brother:

The enclosed pages present a few points which were opened to Sister White last night, and which she wished sent to you. She has for some days been suffering from the effects of cold and overwork, and is today unable to read or write. The matter was written out as she presented it. We sent some copies of articles and letters by the S. F. mail, which Sister White desired you to read; but as we were not certain that you were in Battle Creek, they were addressed to Elder Tenney, with directions that he read and forward to you. 11LtMs, Lt 96, 1896, par. 1

Yours in the work, [(signed) M. Davis] 11LtMs, Lt 96, 1896, par. 2

*****

“The law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.” [Galatians 3:24.] In this scripture, the Holy Spirit through the apostle is speaking especially of the moral law. The law reveals sin to us, and causes us to feel our need of Christ, and to flee unto Him for pardon and peace by exercising repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ. 11LtMs, Lt 96, 1896, par. 3

An unwillingness to yield up preconceived opinions, and to accept this truth, lay at the foundation of a large share of the opposition manifested at Minneapolis against the Lord’s message through Brethren Waggoner and Jones. By exciting that opposition, Satan succeeded in shutting away from our people, in a great measure, the special power of the Holy Spirit that God longed to impart to them. The enemy prevented them from obtaining that efficiency which might have been theirs in carrying the truth to the world, as the apostles proclaimed it after the day of Pentecost. The light that is to lighten the whole earth with its glory was resisted, and by the action of our own brethren has been in a great degree kept away from the world. 11LtMs, Lt 96, 1896, par. 4

*****

The law of Ten Commandments is not to be looked upon as much from the prohibitory side, as from the mercy side. Its prohibitions are the sure guarantee of happiness in obedience. As received in Christ, it works in us the purity of character that will bring joy to us through eternal ages. To the obedient it is a wall of protection. We behold in it the goodness of God, who by revealing to men the immutable principles of righteousness, seeks to shield them from the evils that result from transgression. 11LtMs, Lt 96, 1896, par. 5

We are not to regard God as waiting to punish the sinner for his sin. The sinner brings the punishment upon himself. His own actions start a train of circumstances that bring the sure result. Every act of transgression reacts upon the sinner, works in him a change of character, and makes it more easy for him to transgress again. By choosing to sin, men separate themselves from God, cut themselves off from the channel of blessing, and the sure result is ruin and death. 11LtMs, Lt 96, 1896, par. 6

The law is an expression of God’s idea. When we receive it in Christ, it becomes our idea. It lifts us above the power of natural desires and tendencies, above temptations that lead to sin. “Great peace have they that love thy law; and nothing shall offend them,”—cause them to stumble. [Psalm 119:165.] 11LtMs, Lt 96, 1896, par. 7

There is no peace in unrighteousness; the wicked are at war with God. But he who receives the righteousness of the law in Christ is in harmony with heaven. “Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.” [Psalm 85:10.] 11LtMs, Lt 96, 1896, par. 8