Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 11


Lt 121, 1896

White, J. E.; White, Emma

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

April 11, 1896

Portions of this letter are published in 4MR 265; 8MR 251; 4Bio 265.

Dear Children:

I could not sleep this morning, after half past twelve o’clock. I have had personal testimonies to write, which have tried my soul. They have been a severe draft on me. I have spoken six times in the meetings. Friday and Sabbath, I had very close testimonies to bear, in public, to two families who were not walking circumspectly before God. Both days the burden was very severe upon me. There was a breaking down in the meeting, and quite a number came forward for prayers. We hope that this meeting will be a great blessing to all those who attend. I was so anxious for some persons to come to the meeting that I agreed to give them work in painting so that they could pay their board. We have to keep working to save souls to the truth who are ready to die. The hard times threw many souls into the deepest financial perplexity, and these persons are men of good intellect, who are trying to learn the truth. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 1

I have much work in writing to do. That which you say, in regard to my work, is very good reasoning. I am satisfied to have you remain and do whatever the Lord lays out for you to do. I was glad to receive your letters. They were encouraging. And if you shall get into a strait place for money to help the poor to help themselves, you may draw upon me for one hundred more from the Review and Herald. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 2

I am thankful to say that I am, in many respects, better healthwise than I have been since I came to Australia. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 3

Willie and May are very happy, and they are highly pleased with their twin boys. The babies are quite well, and sleep nearly all the time. Sara McEnterfer is their nurse, and she is a most efficient nurse. May is remarkably well. She went through her ordeal well. The foreheads of the boys are very fully developed. They are hearty, hungry little fellows, and take a large amount of mother’s milk, so that there will be no trouble in that respect. May is as cheerful and happy as need be. She has not lost her red cheeks [at] any time. We are all perfectly relieved to see such well-formed heads and nice faces. I think that they will look very much alike, when the least and last born shall have a few months’ growth. They are six days old today. Brother Lacey, May’s father, is just as pleased and happy as a man can be. He says, “Now I am veritably a grandfather.” 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 4

Today we have had a very interesting meeting. There were quite a large number of outsiders present. The postmaster and his wife and his two children came today. He comes often. He is a very intelligent-looking man. I wish that he would receive the truth. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 5

Brother Prescott talked upon loyalty to God. His clear and pointed remarks were excellent; and the Holy Spirit did give him utterance. Our numbers are increasing in attendance. Our meetings here will close in about ten days; then after a few days’ meeting at Sydney, Professor Prescott and family sail for South Africa. We shall miss them very much. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 6

My writings are piled up around me. Books are to be completed, and I have private testimonies to write. I long to have them finished, but when will this be? My mind is led out on these subjects that are of intense interest to me—the Bible as a book above all books for education. This is the theme of my speaking and writing. I shall have quite an addition to make the book Christian Education. The Lord help me, is my prayer. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 7

I do so much desire to see the precious light of truth shining in clear and steady rays. I must have more grace, and the power of God. I must be strong in His strength. I must know day by day the power of His grace. I have had for the last months, yes, for one year, the most decided testimonies to bear for individuals in this country, and this has required a large amount of writing. There are evils in workers, in speakers, and in those who are lax and loose in principle, that must be corrected. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 8

Monday, April 13, 1896

I arose at four o’clock this morning. My soul has been exceedingly troubled in regard to the lax principles of mortality that I have been made to see and feel because the Lord has laid the burden upon me. These poor souls stand directly in the path of sinners, and hinder their conversion. O what shall be done to change their moral taste? We see more and still more of the natural, hereditary tendencies kept and preserved as choice treasures in the heart of professed Christians who are lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 9

I see and sense more than I ever have, the parable of the ten virgins. “And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.” [Matthew 25:2.] Yes, foolish indeed. Their God-given capabilities—the rich treasures of character which should be gaining influence and power on the side of truth and righteousness—are mingled with the scent of selfishness and self-indulgence. The strange fire is mixed with the sacred fire, and its purity, holiness, and divine origin eclipsed. There is plenty of animal machinery at work; Christ in truth is advocated, but is not represented; for this reason the truth is dishonored by the very ones who advocate it. Many of those who have their Bibles to which they can turn at any time, and distinguish the true from the false influence, are carried away with the corrupting, deceiving, false characters, who present a very nice appearance, as if wise in Bible lore, but do not the words of Christ. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 10

I am compelled to see these defects and reprove them. This brings on me great distress of soul. But I must bear the reproof to those men and women walking in darkness, although professedly zealous for the truth as far as words are concerned. Rotten timber has been brought into the character, and corrupted the whole man. It is this slip-shod Christianity that hedges up our way, dishonors our God, and brings the truth into disrepute. We can only reprove the wrong, and amid the perils of these last days lift up Jesus, the Pattern character, and keep Him before the mind’s eye. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 11

Those who are in earnest, those who desire to do the will of God, will heed the words, “Follow me.” They that “follow me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” [John 8:12.] They are the ones who have the more earnest, determined desire to walk in the light emanating from Christ. We can all cleave close to Jesus. Jesus is our only Pattern. Every ungodly professor is a foolish virgin, an object of pity, a gainsayer, and no one need be deceived, deluded, or charmed with his strange fire. But the work of the true believer is to be all the more zealous to keep the sacred fire ever burning upon the censer, and then he will be a lightbearer to the world. The more pointed testimonies must be presented to condemn sin in the flesh. Blasphemers and infidels are in our very midst, under a garb of righteousness. Here at this very time we need to speak truth as it is in Jesus. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 12

There are men who have accepted the truth, and who talk the truth fluently, but have grafted the truth into the natural vine; they are a wild vine, and will bear fruit unto death. The natural temperament will be developed because they have not that faith that works by love and purifies the soul. The passions of the unrenewed heart gain the supremacy, reason becomes dethroned; the God-like humility they would have through Christ Jesus is exchanged for a coarse unchristian character. Self and hereditary tendencies are revealed if at any time their way is crossed. So long have they practiced self-indulgence and self-deceiving that deception and falsehood mark their course. What can arouse the conscience of these professed Christians, who are dead, while they seem to be alive? Constantly they need to have done for them all that it is possible to do, for they are objects of compassion and labor. They are constantly kindling strange fire, and cannot discern the human sparks of their own kindling from the sacred fire from heaven. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 13

While this class is steadily increasing, the development of their spiritual blindness should be like another and still another voice to arouse those who are laborers together with God, to see what they themselves should be to bear the truth, to live and practice every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God, and to show by their individual life what a Christian is. If we prize the Bible, we will prize the truths it contains, and will so fashion our characters that we shall meet the requirements it demands. Bringing the truth into practical life will be like using the sacred fire of God’s own kindling upon our censers. We shall then have a living connection with God. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 14

There are those with whom we shall be called to labor who need constantly the pure, holy example of the true followers of Christ represented ever before them. There can be no letting down of the standard. Because there is a cheapness of character all around them, there is the more need of their words, their attitude and deportment, representing Jesus Christ, without guile, without spot or stain of corruption. There is a positive necessity of keeping close to Jesus, cleaving to Him who is our only strength and efficiency and power. We can not depend on self a moment. The Lord our righteousness is our strength and power. We need clear discernment to see the evil tendencies, and shun them. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 15

“Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.” [1 Corinthians 10:7-13, 31.] 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 16

Last night (Sunday) there was a large number of outsiders out. Elder Daniells talked upon the change of the Sabbath. In Cooranbong and out in the country places there are settled many Catholics. We hope the light of truth will shed its bright beams into all the homes of the people. Our meeting closes here in about ten days, and then there is a meeting in Sydney. There are excellent families located in the country all about here. The Lord has some jewels to be rescued from the rubbish of error. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 17

I long to see an interest created in this locality where our school is to be established. We have had no proper place for meetings. I shall petition that the meeting tent be left standing, that the opportunity for meetings shall be open for all who will come. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 18

I hope, my son Edson, that you will cleave to Jesus Christ. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 19

We are educating the people here, who are not inclined to put brain, bone, and muscle into their work, that it must become a fixed conviction in their own souls, that religion merely handed down to our fathers will not withstand the temptations of Satan. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 20

We are trying to demonstrate to them that, while there is no panoply but truth for us in order to be saved, diligence in business is essential to guard us against temptation. Indolence and idleness, games and parties and holiday picnics, are opening many avenues to temptation. Doing away with these abundant pleasure gatherings, and making precious time tell in doing something useful in the service of Christ, will be a greater educating force to make all-sided students than loading down the mind with the studies of authors usually studied in our schools. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 21

It is not toil in trades, or in cultivation of the soil, that degrades any man; it is not hard, taxing labor that weakens the brain power and creates sickness and disease; it is the little use made of the living machinery that enfeebles, and causes disease and premature death. Disuse of the organs that God has given to the living human agent is the cause of disease and feebleness of all the powers, the intellect included. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 22

Adam was created in innocency; yet God gave him employment, to tend the garden. This did not degrade him. Here was his book of study—God in nature. He was to study God and obey Him. Paul had to work, laboring with his hands, and felt no dishonor in it. All who would resist temptations that assail them from without and within must make sure that they are on the Lord’s side; that His truth is in their hearts; that it keeps sentinel watch in their souls, ready to sound an alarm and summon them to action in warring against every evil. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 23

All knowledge that deserves the name of science is found in the higher education in the Word of God, and should be acquired by all human agents. True education strengthens the moral powers, expands the mind, and should be cultivated. But the grand educating book, found in nature, which hears and sees God, has been greatly neglected. God help us to teach correctly what constitutes an all-sided education. 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 24

Love to all, 11LtMs, Lt 121, 1896, par. 25