Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 12 (1897)


Ms 75a, 1897



July 1897

Formerly Undated Ms 97. Variant of Ms 75, 1897. Previously unpublished.

The words of truth, the sayings of our Lord, which are to be voiced by His servants in the churches, cannot be called a new revelation, but as men come near to God the entrance of the Word of God giveth light; it giveth understanding to the simple, which means to the humble and contrite in heart. This is the result of opening the eyes to behold wondrous things out of His law. The Lord designs that in His revelation of truth in all ages the doctrines of grace should be gradually unfolded to the comprehension of men as is described: “If we follow on to know the Lord” we shall know “his going forth is prepared as the morning.” [Hosea 6:3.] The treasures of truth are all there in the Word, but are only seen and comprehended by the searches after the truth, from obscurity of dawn in our Lord’s teachings to the radiance of noonday. We have been fully convinced of this fact during these meetings. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 1

The kingdom of Heaven, in the sense of celestial truth, is like a treasure hid in a field, the which when a man hath found he hideth; and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath and buyeth the field, that he may come in possession of the treasure. We may in faith and confidence draw nigh to God in every important meeting where souls are to be rescued from customs, traditions, and errors hoary with age. In searching the field, in digging for the precious jewels of truth, more coins and concealed jewels should be discovered. Unexpectedly there is found precious ore that is to be gathered and treasured, but the search is to be continued. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 2

Hitherto there has been found very much of the treasure that lies near the surface, therefore more accessible. But the research properly conducted, with every effort to keep a pure understanding and the heart purified, will lead to the discovery of many precious, rich deposits. And the mind if kept open and constantly searching the field of revelation, the store-house of the unsearchable riches of Christ, will find hidden treasures of truth—some revealed in new aspect, others they had overlooked in searching for the treasure. Thus it is with the teachings of Christ; that which is of the greatest value and consequence to the Bible student is His teaching in regard to the Holy Spirit. There is indeed a vast tract in the teachings of Christ, presenting truth by which all minds would become enriched. As they follow on to know the Lord their minds will become more and more susceptible to the truth, and will be gaining clear perceptions of the truth, enriched by the application of truth. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 3

The presence of the Holy Spirit is scarcely appreciated because not discerned. This subject needs to be brought home, for it seems to be in a great measure left unappropriated. This promise is for all who believe in Jesus Christ, and is offered in the largest measure, for it is to be grasped by faith and is furnished in plentitude, limited only as the human agent is incapable to receive it. Souls go starving and thirsting while the abundance of the bread and wine of heaven in the influence of the Holy Spirit is proffered them. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 4

This spiritual drought in the church is because so large a number have so long been accustomed to be satisfied with meager enlightenment, and to sip a few drops, and their false comprehension, in being satisfied with so little, disqualifies them for the great things of God. The converting power of God must come into the church to bless the members before they can be made a blessing. Individual, daily conversion accomplishes everything for the members of Christ’s body, for it brings us daily into divine relationship with Himself, and then methods and plans, tact and ability, and the very highest qualifications, are brought into the kingdom of God. And the church [moves], [its members] advancing by placing themselves in humble attitudes with true contrition of soul to be worked by the Holy Spirit. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 5

God calls upon His people to be alive to the great importance of preaching Christ as the Root and Offspring of David, the Author of redemption, and to the necessity of having the Holy Spirit to work in them, for this is the purpose of God. The acceptation of Jesus Christ means a following on to know the Lord, which is a conversion to the Holy Spirit’s power and efficiency, in their case, to preserve [them] from falling into temptation and sin, and then wisdom is to be exercised in winning souls to Christ. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 6

The working of the Holy Spirit upon the human agent is as a new conversion. Conviction of guilt, susceptibility to discern the truth, and the suitable and earnest application of truth to the human heart is the Holy Spirit’s heavenly ministration. Every true believer is the efficiency in the working of the Holy Spirit, and he will, if he follows on to know the Lord, not only discern in his own personal experience that Christ is the Root and Offspring of David, but [that] following on to know the Lord perfects the experience in all the churches, that they may discern Christ as the Bright and Morning Star. Let the members of the church show in outward lustre to the world that in beholding, themselves, the works of Christ, and having the mind of Christ, they walk in the footsteps of Christ; and their good works bear credentials to the world that they are Christ’s. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 7

God’s people dishonor Him when they assume attitudes as a procession of mourners in the narrow path that leads to eternal life. The service of God is to make the church represent the brightness of Christ, not as mourners covering the altar of God with their weeping. God has divine joy and praise and thanksgiving to proceed from the lips of those who have a living connection with Christ. They are not to betray Christ by their appearance of sadness and gloom, mourning and complaining, but are to reveal His love and peace and reconciliation. God is not pleased to have His people consider themselves dependent upon parties of pleasure and the association of the world for their enjoyment. All are to be missionaries to labor in Christ’s line; then Christ’s joy will remain in them and their joy will be full. There is a worldly side to all selfish pleasure seeking enjoyments. This will contaminate every holy principle the sacred and the common cannot mingle. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 8

If heaven is desirable, if we really desire to enter the abodes of bliss, in searching the Scriptures we shall learn of Jesus [that] there is to be a preparation of the heart and the character for the companionship of the holy and pure in the kingdom of God. If we [would] see the King in His beauty, we must attain the beautiful traits of character here. We are the Lord’s property by creation and by redemption. Satan’s power of deceiving is very strong. He deludes by his sophistry and by his power which he obtains over all who are living a divided life. Some flatter themselves that they can accomplish more good by serving God and mammon. If they [would] study their Bibles they would read the words of the Great Teacher, “Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” [Matthew 6:24.] The voice of the true Shepherd invites, “come out from among them and be ye separate, and touch not the unclean and I will receive you, I will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters saith the Lord Almighty.” [2 Corinthians 6:17, 18.] 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 9

None of you need to be fearful that you will be in danger, in our schools of learning, of being too exact and particular in serving the Lord. Your great danger, continually, is in your lax and loose ideas of what constitutes Christian character. It is a general fault that you are not only unfaithful in that which is least, but you betray holy trust in your mingling with a class, and making companions of those, who serve as decoys to imperceptibly lead away from truth and righteousness. False theories originated by the father of lies are treated as correct principles. One has an influence over others [as] to make them careless, unthankful and unholy. Cannot professed ministers of God, and teachers in our schools, and students who profess to be Christians, see the necessity of leading the way, [for] those with whom they have connection, in the narrow path and through the straight gate. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 10

In our schools the standard of piety and true Christianity is loosing its power. The restraint which the commandments of God brings upon every soul is considered a restriction of their liberty. The indulgence of pleasure and wild license is called freedom. What is the result of this dangerous conclusion? The Holy Spirit is not desired. They want to get out of the way of its influence, for it convicts of sin and of their neglect of righteousness and a preparation of a judgment which is to come. These selfish souls are brought where the truth of God is spoken and the light shining from heaven, and if they are not dead to all impressions of the Spirit of God, they feel like a train of mourners in a cemetery. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 11

They feel, on special occasions, that they are under the condemnation of the Spirit of God, and like calling for a fast, a solemn assembly, lamenting their backslidings and mournfully expressing their want of the Holy Spirit of God. They cast themselves down, they prostrate themselves before God, and bemoan their coldness and backslidings. They represent a people that are gasping for the breath of life and ready to die. Most pitiful prayers are made for God’s mercy; but when they are away from this influence which arouses them, they evidence that the operation of the Spirit of God upon their hearts did not produce genuine conversion. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 12

They have no strength to resist temptation; they love to associate with the light, the trifling, and the vain. Their life is a dishonor to the Saviour whom they profess to follow. Their own darkness they bring upon themselves by entertaining false principles of what constitutes a life of a Christian when [he] listens to the voice of the great Teacher, “Come unto me all ye that are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest, take my yoke upon you, and learn of me for I am meek and lowly of heart and ye shall find rest unto your souls, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” [Matthew 11:28-30.] This is the experience that every soul must have if they shall enter the kingdom of God. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 13

To yoke up with Christ is to come out from the world and be separate. The remedy for all such is found in the first chapter of second Peter: “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, according as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” [Verses 2-4.] Please read this entire chapter. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 14

Living upon the plan of addition, which is here brought to view, will give strength and efficiency to follow in the footsteps of your Redeemer. Looking unto Jesus, studying His character, you will have spiritual strength. The joy of Christ will be in you, and your joy will be full. You will be a partaker of the divine nature, having escaped the corruptions that are in the world through lust. Will you take heed to the instructions here given? If you live adding grace to grace, God will multiply unto you the precious influences of His Holy Spirit. Your religious experience will no longer be filled with gloom and you be spiritually strengthless. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 15

I beseech of you for your soul’s sake, for Christ’s sake, that you strive earnestly to overcome the temptations of the devil. Pray most earnestly that you may have the oil of grace in your vessels with your lamps, that you may not be counted as the foolish virgins. 12LtMs, Ms 75a, 1897, par. 16