Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 13 (1898)


Lt 89, 1898

White, J. E.

Campground, Logan Road, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

October 30, 1898

Portions of this letter are published in 1SM 174; 1BC 1105; CTr 66; 5MR 305. +Note

Dear Son Edson:

I received your letter in the last mail while we were having a council meeting in the large tent. At this meeting there were quite a number present, Elder Haskell, Brother Semmens, Brother and Sister Wilson, and others. I read a portion of your letter to them, and they were much interested in it. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 1

I do not favor your remaining in that hot climate during the summer. I do not think it is wisdom, for you are easily affected by the malaria. The Lord would not have any of us presumptuous. He would have us care for the health of the body, which is essential for the health of the soul. I am very glad to hear that the work is advancing, and that good is being accomplished. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 2

We have had one of the most successful meetings here that has ever been held in the colonies. A wonderful interest has been created, and a large number of the very best class of people have been attending from the very first. And now is the important time, when we must gather in the sheaves. The coming meetings on Sabbath and Sunday will give us evidence of how far the work has gone and how deep are the impressions made. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 3

If we had one worker who could stand with Elder Haskell, I would say, Take down the tent and pitch it in Brisbane proper. The locality in which we have held our meetings is the poorest part of Brisbane, and with proper ministerial labor, just such an interest would be created all through this country. Elder Haskell has a treasure house of knowledge, and if he can carry on the work in the lines he has hitherto done, we could not ask for better or more acceptable help. But there is a more urgent line of work pointed out from him to do, and he cannot carry all this himself. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 4

Daniel and the Revelation should be gotten out in little books and made as simple as possible. This should be given to every church, and to the people scattered everywhere. It is not a money making scheme, but it will bring in means to invest in getting out other books. Elder Haskell has a whole treasure house of precious things, and he should be tenderly cherished, and everything provided for him that will help him in his work. These precious things should be taken down in shorthand, and given to our people. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 5

The Word of God is to be made to are published in its simplicity. In the parable of the great supper, the gospel is made so plain and simple that it can be impressed upon the mind. The message given to us is, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” [Mark 16:15.] The extent of this invitation is world wide, and shows the urgency of the work to be done. In the performance of this great and extensive work, no one is to put on his own armor, but the armor of Christ. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 6

Self, and its peculiar characteristics, are to be submerged in Christ. It is in no case to be exalted or uplifted. Christ is to appear as the one altogether lovely, the chiefest among ten thousand. As the love of Christ for the world has provided this great feast, so the love of Christ alone is to be revealed in giving the gospel invitation. There is no place for self. Lift up the standard of Jesus Christ. The costly provision has been made, the banquet is prepared, and the love of Jesus Christ is to be the message we are to bear to the world. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 7

In this work, there is danger of bringing before the people theories which, while they may be all truth, will create controversy, and will not lead men to the great supper prepared for them. We want the love of God formed within to subdue and soften our human nature, and to bring us into conformity to His holy character. Then we shall spread before the people the unsearchable riches of Christ in all their abundance. The invitation is given by Christ Himself, and it is the work of all His followers to call attention to the board of provisions that has been made accessible to all. Then let not subjects difficult to be understood come first. Christ is calling men to the banquet, and let all who will, come. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 8

The men who are indifferent to the call, “Come, for all things are now ready,” fail to express a love for the fallen race. [Luke 14:17-20.] The love of Christ should constrain every messenger to see in the message they bear the purest, deepest, love of God. His gospel feast is represented in the parable of the great supper. Then let every worker clothe himself with the mind of Christ, and reveal Christ in the invitation, manifesting the love of God, deep, earnest, and unquenchable, in his life and character. It was a free gift, and as we consider it, well may the question come home to our souls, “How much owest thou unto my Lord?” [Luke 16:5.] Present this in all its fulness, and it will grow deeper and more grand. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 9

Before Christ clothed His divinity with humanity and came to our world, God sent this message through Noah, Enoch, Seth, and Methusaleh. Lot in Sodom bore the message, and a race of messengers proclaimed the coming One. But at this time the message is to be proclaimed everywhere. Says the prophet Isaiah, “Ho everyone that thirsteth, come ye to the waters; and he that hath no money, come ye, but and eat. Yea, come buy wine and milk without money and without price. Hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good; and let your soul delight itself in fatness.” [Isaiah 55:1, 2.] 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 10

The feast now is spread. The last invitation to be given is to go forth to all nations to the end of the world. This is our work. The messengers are now in a more special sense to call, “Hearken diligently.” The message is to go forth from the lips of human intelligences. He who came to our world to proclaim the message was the Lord Himself. Then tell the people that Christ came in human form, that His humanity might touch humanity, and that His divinity might lay hold upon divinity. His servants are to be linked together. “Ye are laborers together with God,” He says, “ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.” [1 Corinthians 3:9.] If His workers will be worked by the Holy Spirit, a great work can be done. “Compel them to come in,” are the words addressed to the messengers, “that my house may be filled.” [Luke 14:23.] The Lord means that we shall be in earnest. If we are wholly consecrated to God, the Holy Spirit will work with us. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 11

Look at our world today, you who claim to be Christians. Are you awake to the situation as you see how the kindness and love of a long-forbearing God is treated with contempt and absolute rejection? Finite, fallen man is in need of pardon and peace, and all are invited to come. The Lord Jesus, the great Teacher, gives the invitation, but often it is met with frivolous excuses, or turned from with jesting and contempt. All who will may come, and respond to the gracious invitation. Why cannot men see the importance of accepting the call, and making their peace with God? 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 12

The devil is not dead. He is working with all his attractive allurements to persuade men to close their ears that they shall not hear, and thousands who ought to be giving this testing message to the world are hiding their talents in the earth. They are making no use of their powers to draw souls to the bountifully spread table. Unfaithful, slothful servants! God will call you to account. But we thank God that there are some faithful voices heard, that there are some who feel their responsibility and who are at work, with every means in their power to compel them to come in. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 13

God is speaking to souls. Behold Him weeping upon the crest of Olivet. Hear Him speak: “O that thou hadst known, even thou, in this thy day, the things that belong unto thy peace.” [Luke 19:42.] It belongs to the peace of every soul to come back to his loyalty to God and obey His commandments. Human laws can only take cognizance of outward actions. The rites of the Jewish economy were instituted by Christ Himself. He was the foundation of their system of sacrificial offerings. These all prefigured Christ, the great antitype of all their religious service. The ten holy precepts spoken by Christ upon Sinai’s mount were the revelation of the character of God, and made known to the world the fact that He had jurisdiction over the whole human heritage. That law of ten precepts of the greatest love that can be presented to man is the voice of God from heaven speaking to the soul in promise, “This do, and you will not come under the dominion and control of Satan.” There is not a negative in that law, although it may appear thus. It is Do, and Live. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 14

All heaven saw that cheap, worthless, trivial ceremonies and traditions were becoming mingled with the pure and holy principles of the law of God. Transgression of the law of God by the Jewish nation was becoming widespread and deep. They were making the law of God meaningless by making the sayings of men of greater consequence than the sayings of God. Christ came to our world in human form that humanity might touch humanity, and humanity lay hold upon divinity. He came to exalt that which had been made of none effect by the maxims and traditions of men. The spirituality of the law was being lost, and He firmly met the priests and Pharisees with the rebuke, Ye teach for doctrine the commandments of men. Ye make void the law of God through your traditions. No great insult could they give him than they were thus offering to God, and He said to these leaders, “Ye are both ignorant of the Scriptures and of the power of God.” [Matthew 22:29.] 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 15

Christ came to our world to seek and to save that which was lost. He must rescue and restore the law of God to its elevated position as holy, just, and good. Through human tradition and the accumulated rubbish of rabbinical lore, this law had been defaced, but Christ in His own life and teachings made the ten holy precepts stand forth in the perfection of righteousness. He taught that the law of God is perfect, converting the soul. From the mount of blessing He proclaimed the true purity, the force and far-reaching principles of the divine law, giving it greater force than when He proclaimed it on Sinai’s mount. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 16

Let us listen to His voice: “Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill.” Every specification of that law He came to fulfill. “For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law until all be fulfilled.” [Matthew 5:17, 18.] Christ came into the world to suffer and die, that man, being ransomed from the power of Satan’s authority, might have another probation in which to prove whether he would return to his loyalty, to keep the commandments of God and become the child of God. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 17

The conditions are plainly specified, “Whosoever shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I say unto you, That except you righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.” [Verses 19, 20.] 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 18

The law thus expounded by the Lawgiver presented before the multitude its true character, and placed it upon its original, holy, honorable basis. Christ cut away from it the rubbish that had been piled above it, and presented it with its undeniable title to reign in the hearts of all. He gave these sacred precepts large room for operation. Its authority was never to be circumscribed. There would never come a time when it would lose one jot or tittle of its precious all-pervading power. That law takes cognizance of all the doings of men, noting and weighing the words and actions, and discovering the elements of good and evil. Every day it is approving or condemning the transacions of every soul. It is a sin detector. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 19

At the present time there are those placed as jurors, senators, lawyers, and judges, who forget that God is a party to all their transactions, and that He will call them to give account of all their injustice toward their fellow men, in causing the innocent to suffer and the guilty to escape. Men have so long done this that they have forgotten God. “Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the hearts of the sons of men are fully set in them to do evil.” [Ecclesiastes 8:11.] But the God of truth is a witness to every false oath, and the Holy One that inhabiteth eternity will not serve with their sins. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 20

No man can violate justice in the common courts of today, but he will sooner or later understand that all fraud, all deception, will stand open to the universe of heaven and to the inhabitants of earth. God has given to men the talents of reason, of speech, of discrimination, and if they pervert God’s gifts and use them to work fraud and unrighteousness and injustice, the Lord will surely bring them into judgment. God is either served by the reason and the talents He has entrusted to men, or He is dishonored by them. He sees the transactions of the children of men. No one can practice falsehood, no one can receive a bribe to clear men from the consequence of their guilt and fasten the wrong upon the innocent, but the Lord will bring them into judgment for it. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 21

This will be a serious matter for those who have assumed the responsibility of administering justice, and who for the sake of gain have done injustice to their fellow men. Those men who are standing in responsible positions may know that whatever dishonors God is a transgression of his law, and places them at the bar of God to render an account for their deeds. The men who have supposed that they can violate the principles of righteousness, and that it will come out right in the end, may know that for all these things the Lord will bring them into judgment. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 22

There are men, in the church and in the world, who have educated themselves to practice fraud, and for this they will be brought into judgment, for they have not only treated their soul, body, and spirit, as worthless, but have deprived God of his own blood-bought possession. “Ye are not your own,” he says, “for ye are bought with a price.” [1 Corinthians 6:19, 20.] Consider the price paid for your salvation, that you might become members of the royal family, children of the heavenly king. But men have chosen to stand, not under the blood stained banner of Prince Immanuel, but under the rebel flag to do the works of a rebellious prince. They may have sold their souls for money. They may have taken their Lord’s money to purchase wheat and the facilities whereby poor men live, that they may extort from the Lord’s creatures the highest prices. They make for themselves princely fortunes. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 23

But for all this the Lord says he will bring them into judgment. In God’s sight such a man has made himself an outcast. He has sold his soul for that which he may lose at any time. He has worshipped and idol; covetousness was his sin, and the means needed to bless humanity has become to him the greatest curse. 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 24

The cries of starving humanity are coming up before God, while these men bow down to their senseless idols as verily as do the heathen to their gods of wood and stone. Though the whole world were in league to prove it otherwise, every dollar gained in this unholy traffic wraps a curse up with it. The larger the bank stock the more sure will be the judgment of God. Of these the words of Eliphaz will prove truth: “I saw him taking root, but I cursed his habitation.” [Job 5:3.] To them God will say as to the rich man: “Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall these things be, which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.” [Luke 12:20, 21.] 13LtMs, Lt 89, 1898, par. 25