Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 12 (1897)


Ms 56, 1897

“I am of good courage in the Lord.”


June 24, 1897

Previously unpublished.

I am of good courage in the Lord. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 1

When the school was about to open, Elder Haskell was summoned to Adelaide, and he stood there amid the difficulty arising from the apostasy of Elder McCullagh and Brother Hawkins, to meet the workings of Satan through human agencies. These men claimed to be sanctified, but the misrepresentations of McCullagh and his wife from house to house, against me especially, have shown their enmity, although never a word has passed between us but that of kindness and tenderness. Not one single rule of God’s Word has been regarded in this apostasy, and cruel opposition has been manifested against me. Most false representations have been made of me to others, but not one word has been spoken or one line traced with pen and ink to present before me the things of which they accused me. They have gone from house to house making statements that have not the slightest foundation in truth. In apparent honesty, falsehoods have been manufactured and reported as truth. Other things they have so perverted and misstated that false witness has been written against them in the books of heaven. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 2

O, how full of distress my soul has been. To think that after living in the light, having a knowledge of the truth, they should turn away from it, depart from their loyalty to their brethren, and turn traitors to the truth and to God, was too distressing a matter for me to contemplate. They have turned away from Jesus, as did many of the disciples when Christ declared, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 3

“As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father; so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live forever. These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum. Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is a hard saying; who can hear it? When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before? It is the Spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him. And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 4

“From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him.” John 6:53-66. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 5

Because of their evil heart of unbelief, Satan had adopted them as his agents, and while inspired by Satan, they have claimed to be full of the Holy Spirit, having light, great light. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 6

Disguising himself as a serpent, Satan came to Eve and said, “Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.” Genesis 3:1-3. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 7

The first contradiction of the Word of God is given in verses four and five: “And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.” Genesis 3:4, 5. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 8

Here was the test for Adam and Eve. Eve was deceived by the serpent into believing that God had withheld something most desirable from them which would make them as gods, “knowing good and evil”—just that which God did not want them to know. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 9

“And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.” Genesis 3:6. Here was Adam’s sin. He was not deceived. He was tempted by his wife, and did there transgress the commandments of God. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 10

This transgression has opened the flood gates to our world. All the deceptions, all the prevarications, all the misrepresentations, are comprised in these temptations of Satan. And any member of the human family who shall yield to Satan’s alluring temptations, even in little things, will be taken as birds and entrapped in the snare of the fowler. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 11

Nearly the entire church was captivated by the presentations of McCullagh and Hawkins. But they are now undeceived and are able to say, The Lord hath delivered us from the snare of the fowler, and we are escaped. The overflowing fullness of happiness these men claimed to experience was the enchantment of the serpent: it was not the Spirit of God at all. They possessed the attributes of Satan. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 12

While these apostasies were taking place, I was carrying heavy burdens in this place. The thought of Brother McCullagh turning away from the truth, betraying Christ, and becoming a traitor, his refusal of every effort made to reclaim him, filled me with sorrow. I knew that it meant the loss of his soul. I prayed for the disaffected ones day and night, and yet not one concession has been made. Must we give up those souls who have had clear light and evidence, so that increased light will not more shine upon their pathway? O, what a position for those men to be in! 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 13

The Lord gives to each the measure of grace and truth, and in accordance with the light given them in His Word, appoints them a place where their faith must work and where they must contend for the faith once delivered to the saints, according to their entrusted abilities. They are to labor to make the very most of the capital that the Lord has entrusted to them. Their individual responsibility to keep body, soul, and spirit in harmony with God is great. They should look upon the value of the soul as very precious, because purchased with an infinite price. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 14

The temple of God, the human body, is to be garrisoned, that there may not enter into it anything that shall weaken or cripple the human machinery, or defile the temple of God. The body is the habitation of God through the spirit, to be preserved holy unto the Lord. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 15

If the human habitation is not converted to God, Satan will come in to destroy the human organism. It is thorough conversion of the whole being that God accepts. The willingness of men to live apart from Him makes them full of imperfection in habits and customs and practices. They disorder the whole machinery of the human body by gratification of appetites and passions. These habits and customs and practices in eating and drinking, and in laboring in any line, are determining the future destiny of man. God declares, “If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy.” 1 Corinthians 3:17. Soul, body, and spirit, as the habitation of God through the Spirit, are to be holy unto the Lord. 12LtMs, Ms 56, 1897, par. 16