Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 12

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Lt 158, 1897

Starr, Brother and Sister [G. B.]

Sunnyside, Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

May 19, 1897

This letter is published in entirety in 9MR 366-368.

Dear Brother and Sister Starr:

We received and read your letter with interest. I was not surprised at all to learn that these men who have had so great light should make rapid strides in determined apostasy. This experience reveals to us the fact that true rebellion is incurable. These men take a large amount of knowledge with them of what constitutes truth and evidence. They may misinterpret it all, misapply the truth, but they cannot convert truth into error, neither can they convert error into truth. The truth will live through all time and through eternal ages. Men letting it alone, separating truth from their lives, in no case lessens the value of truth. 12LtMs, Lt 158, 1897, par. 1

I would exhort the church to encourage faith and talk faith and act faith. This experience through which you are passing is of God to give you a genuine experience in the things of God. Putting on the robe of humility, we must take our position as learners in the school of Christ. If we will listen to His words, to be repeated to us in this age of this earth’s history, there must be silence in the soul; the clamorous pretensions to self-sufficiency must be cut away from our life. Learn of me, says Christ, for I am meek and lowly of heart and ye shall find rest to your soul. [Matthew 11:29.] 12LtMs, Lt 158, 1897, par. 2

It is essential that we study our Bibles more diligently, that we become more choice in our conversation, for this can be an influence for good. We need to see and sense the inefficiency of human accomplishments, our own impotence, and the dignity and glory of Christ Jesus. The Lord puts us under the guidance of the Holy Spirit if we will walk humbly, trustingly, confidingly in Him. He leads us into all truth. The Holy Spirit takes the things of God as they fell from the lips of Christ and conveys them with living power to the obedient heart. He, the Alpha and the Omega, delivers us into the mold of the gospel that we may take the perfect image of its Author. 12LtMs, Lt 158, 1897, par. 3

You have, in Adelaide, had the fact made apparent to you how unsafe it is to trust in man and make flesh your arm. Submit to the authority of the great Teacher in all humility of mind. He will arm you with His mind, which will fortify you to discern all rebellion. It is a great mistake in all our churches that religion is ofttimes credited to the persons who give in words an assent to the truth; but unless the truth is brought into the inner sanctuary of the soul it does not control the thoughts, the words, or the conduct of life. We need simply to have the truth in our hearts. 12LtMs, Lt 158, 1897, par. 4

These apparent difficulties we have met in our experience will be of greatest advantage in revealing to us that men and women may be converted to men but not to Jesus Christ. If the men who preach to them apostatize, they have so feeble a hold of Christ they will apostatize too, because they have never been really converted to the truth. We must find solid foundation for our feet. 12LtMs, Lt 158, 1897, par. 5

We see the two ministers who have preached to you have departed from the faith, and those whose faith was no higher than the ministers will go where their ministers go and leave their Redeemer and deny the truth, giving heed to seducing spirits. Many, many will depart from the faith they once professed, but those who hold fast the faith, firm unto the end, will be overcomers and shall have the crown of life. 12LtMs, Lt 158, 1897, par. 6