Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 11 (1896)

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Ms 19, 1896

Diary

NP

May 1896

Previously unpublished.

On our trip to Tasmania about a year ago, I spoke on one Sabbath in Launceston to the little flock who have turned their feet into the royal path cast up for the ransomed of the Lord to walk in. My discourse was taken from 2 Peter 1. I had much freedom in speaking. There are, I think, seventeen who are keeping the Sabbath in this place as the result of the labors of Brethren Baker and Teasdale. There were about forty assembled, including children. We had a precious season together, many testimonies being borne to love of God. 11LtMs, Ms 19, 1896, par. 1

On the Sunday following a larger number assembled than on the previous day. The Lord blessed me with freedom as I presented before them the love of God for the human family. All listened with the deepest interest. 11LtMs, Ms 19, 1896, par. 2

At the close of the meeting a tall, well-dressed lady hastened to the stand, and grasped my hand, saying, “O, I am so glad to see you. I wish to thank you for writing that book, Great Controversy; it was the means of saving the soul of my son. He was sick, we knew he could not live. He asked me for some book that would be of some help to him spiritually. Some time previous I had purchased this book, but did not understand much about its contents. My son read it through with intense interest. He said to me: ‘I have found in this book that which I have failed to find in any book in your library. The more I read, the more beautiful are the truths which are brought out; and every time I read it I find something that helps me. I am not now afraid to die.’ He found rest in Jesus Christ, and died in perfect peace.” 11LtMs, Ms 19, 1896, par. 3

I asked her his age. She replied, “He was thirty years old.” She continued, “That book was everything to him. He told me if ever I met the person who wrote it, I must tell her what it had done for him, and I promised him I would do so. 11LtMs, Ms 19, 1896, par. 4

“It is seldom in the house for any length of time, but is God’s messenger, carrying light and blessing to others. I lend it to one and another, and all who read it say they never read a book which makes the Bible so plain and clear to their understanding.” 11LtMs, Ms 19, 1896, par. 5

I asked her name; she told me, but failing to speak distinctly I lost it. Thinking our brethren would be able to tell me, I inquired of them; but what was my surprise to learn that they did not know the woman, nor, indeed, had even seen her before. They think they can find out who she is; but if not, we cannot know where that book, so much prized, has been travelling, and what its visit may have done for the families to which it has gone. 11LtMs, Ms 19, 1896, par. 6

The greatest trouble with the people here has been that they are very much more loyal to their minister than they are to their God. They are a church-going people, and are warned by their ministers not to go and hear us; the result has been that those who have come to listen to the truth have been but few in number. 11LtMs, Ms 19, 1896, par. 7

The stay-away argument is an opposition that is hard to handle; but the work that has been done is the sowing of the seed. I believe God has a people in this place, and they must be warned. 11LtMs, Ms 19, 1896, par. 8

Brethren Baker and Teasdale say that in this meeting we had the largest attendance they have seen at any time in this place. The first thing is to get the ears of the people; but if those who have ears will not listen, no one can compel them to hear. This is the difficulty in this country. They have ears, but they hear not; eyes have they, but they see not. But if we can get them to contemplate the cross of Calvary, the great plan of redemption, then the soul is gained [and] their hearts are willing to see wondrous things out of His law. 11LtMs, Ms 19, 1896, par. 9