Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 12 (1897)


Lt 40, 1897

Daniells, A. G.

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

March 16, 1897

This letter is published in entirety in 13MR 281-286.

Dear Brother Daniells:

I send you this morning a letter written for America, and sent there yesterday morning, which will show you how I regard the tithe money being used for other purposes. This is the Lord’s special revenue fund, for a special purpose. I have never so fully understood this matter as I now understand it. Having had questions directed here to me to answer, I have had special instruction from the Lord that the tithe is for a special purpose, consecrated to God to sustain those who minister in the sacred work as the Lord’s chosen, to do His work not only in sermonizing, but in ministering. They should understand all that this comprehends. There is to be meat in the house of God, a treasury well supplied, and it is not to be diverted to other purposes. There is to be special labor given to awaken the people of God, who believe the truth, to give a faithful tithe to the Lord, and ministers should be encouraged and sustained by that tithe. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 1

That there will always be a temptation to divert the tithe money to other channels, we know! But the Lord has guarded this, His own portion, to be sacredly used for the support of the gospel ministers. There may be measures taken as will reduce the working force that bears the message of truth, as is being done, and in America has been done, to meet the measurement of the tithe in the treasury; but this is not the Lord’s plan, and if entered upon and continued will reduce God’s blessing to the churches that work upon such a plan. There may be a great dearth of means if there is a departing from the Lord’s plan. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 2

The Lord regards the tithe as His own, to be used for a certain purpose, and it is an easy matter, in the place of practicing the self-denial that we should, to help in educating students, or in the temporal matters, as providing conveniences for the church, which is necessary, to dip into the Lord’s consecrated portion which should be used only to sustain the ministers in new fields as well as in other places. And this should not be done in a niggardly way. All the inconveniences that the laborers must wrestle with in these new fields should be taken into consideration. The expense of living is greater in some localities than in others. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 3

Special efforts should be make for those who are where fruit is scarce, for they could live so much cheaper it they were where they could get fruit. When they are sent to fields where they are deprived of nearly everything because of the expense, a careful consideration should be make of these matters, and the lack should be supplied as far as possible, but not be withdrawing from his salary for these extra things. Those who are more favorable situated should share their prosperity with those who are in need of the very things that they are abundantly supplied with in their locality. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 4

We shall become very narrow, conceited, and selfish if we are not guarded and do not watch against the foe we have to meet and contend with. I shall do something for Brother Robert Hare. I will supply some things which will relieve the situation, of want of fruit. I will get a couple of hundred pounds of grapes, and make [them] into jelly that they can use on their bread. Now see what others can do. Each can do a little, and send to Brother Hare. When you visit the place, you can take some things, and we will prepare some things for them and send [them] before that time. We will make this a thank offering to God because we are permitted to live in localities where we can obtain these things, and enjoy them. I think the Lord would bless us in doing this. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 5

Now in regard to educating students in our schools. It is a good idea; it will have to be done; but God forbid that in the place of practicing self-denial and self-sacrifice our individual selves, to do this work, we should subtract from the Lord’s portion, specially reserved to sustain the ministers in active labor in the field, and to [keep] at work those who are already ordained for the work. We can easily consider these matters, how much it requires to support our own families according to the members of that family. They let those whose business it is act in accordance with this rule. Look not upon our own things but upon the things of others. Let us practice the golden rule, and do unto others as we would that they should do unto us were we in like circumstances. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 6

The fibrous roots of selfishness will root themselves wherever they are given a chance. We want to cut out and exterminate every fiber of the root of selfishness. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 7

If one is appointed to a field where he is deprived of many things, and is sent into that field by the decision of the conference, that same power is to bear its share of the burden of making this messenger of God in that field as nearly as possible as comfortable and as pleasantly situated as the members of this power are in their several localities. The Lord will bless all such love expressed toward His workers in hard places. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 8

But there is not that careful, tender regard, that thoughtful discrimination, in such cases, as there ought to be. If every one who has any thing to do with these matters would let the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness shine fully into their hearts, they would open the windows on heaven’s side and then diffuse in every way possible the light to others, in a variety of ways. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 9

All these things are to be done, as you propose, to help students to obtain an education; but I ask you, Shall we not all act in this matter unselfishly, and create a fund, and keep it to draw upon on such occasions? When you see a young man or young woman who is a promising subject, advance or loan the sum needed, with the idea that it is a loan, not a gift. It would be better to have it thus. Then when it is returned, it can be used to educate others. But this money is not to be taken from the tithe, but from a separate fund secured for that purpose. This would exert a healthy uprightness and charity and patriotism among our people. There must be thoughtful consideration and a skillful adjustment of the work in the cause of God in all its departments. But let there be no meager, stingy plans in using the consecrated portion for the sustaining of the ministry, for then the treasury would soon be empty. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 10

The management of the case of Brother Hickox is after human methods, not after the methods which the Lord has ordained. I have had this matter so presented to me that I see the danger of diverting the tithe to any such purpose as you have suggested. The Lord is not pleased with your management of this case. May the Lord help you all to have the heavenly anointing, that no such thing may be repeated. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 11

Brother Farnsworth is ready to voice the decisions of human minds without looking on all sides of the question to see if there might not possibly be mistakes made. It is a very serious matter how any one handles one of the Lord’s disciples, one who has been dedicated to His service, to do His work. What made you do this kind of work? The Lord is not in it. You were faithless because there was an empty treasury. Now, in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, I charge you not to devote the means that should be used in sustaining the gospel to any other purpose, and that your faith fail not as you see a lack in the supply of tithes, gifts and offerings. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 12

God would have meat in His house. My heart is stirred with grief as I think of the way in which Brother Lacey was permitted to come from Melbourne to Sydney, sick and alone. Some one should have acted the good Samaritan, and put him into a first-class carriage, if there was one on the train, and if not, wait until there was one. The poor man was crowded into a car with smokers and rough, drinking men to spend his night in such company. Could Christians have seen him in his feebleness and done this? I seldom cry, but I did cry when I heard this, for I felt that it was done to Jesus in the person of His disciple. I do not know who did this, but I would say that should circumstances like this again occur, put the afflicted one into the best compartment, make it as comfortable as possible for him, and charge it to my account. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 13

Brother Herbert [Lacey] is so afraid of taxing the conference that he would allow anything to be done to him. I cannot think, Elder Daniells, that you could have sanctioned this thing had you known of it. There is such a thing as being “penny wise and pound foolish.” Herbert is having all that can be possibly done for him, but that journey from Melbourne was a fearful tax upon him. He is very low judging from outward appearance, he cannot recover. But prayer is going up to God in his behalf. God’s arm is not shortened that it cannot save; neither is His ear heavy that it cannot hear. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 14

He has to go through the full run of typhoid fever. The tobacco fumes must have made his case very much worse. He suffered very much in stomach and bowels. I sent Sara down to help Brother Semmens; but the case is so critical that he will not leave him to go any [place]; he watches over him, and works and prays for him himself. I believe that God will spare Herbert’s life, and not suffer him to do down into the grave. All we can say is, “Thy will be done.” [Matthew 26:42.] “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.” [Psalm 116:15.] O that God would impart the wisdom that we all so much need. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 15

In love. 12LtMs, Lt 40, 1897, par. 16