Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 13 (1898)


Ms 126, 1898

“Search the Scriptures.”


October 17, 1898

Previously unpublished.

“Search the Scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life, and they are they that testify of me.” [John 5:39.] This is the special command of the Saviour. Every possible advantage is gained by searching for a knowledge of Jesus Christ. The darkness of error prevailed to a fearful extent when Jesus revealed Himself to our world; but He came saying, “This is life eternal that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent.” [John 17:3.] 13LtMs, Ms 126, 1898, par. 1

There is a great work to be done. Home religion is greatly needed and wonderfully neglected. Men and women show much interest in foreign missions. They give liberally toward them, and thus seek to satisfy their conscience, thinking that giving to the cause of God will atone for their neglect to set a right example in the home. But the home is their own field, and no excuse is accepted by God for neglecting this field. Nothing can counteract the wrong example set by harsh words spoken to wife or children. It is a neglect to cherish rectitude in the home which sends out into the world ungodly children with warped characters, who unite with evil angels to corrupt others. 13LtMs, Ms 126, 1898, par. 2

Do not think that by instructing the poor at a distance, or by going to expense to place youth in schools where they will obtain true knowledge, will offset the want of Christian piety at home. Parents are responsible for the formation of their children’s characters, and if these children are allowed to be disobedient, unruly, and unholy, attainting and corrupting others by evil ways, they will, as parents, be held accountable for the result of their neglect. 13LtMs, Ms 126, 1898, par. 3

Nothing that fathers and mothers can do for those afar off will atone for a wrong course of action in the home. God requires parents, by self-control, by setting an example of solid building for time and for eternity, to disseminate light within the immediate circle of their own little flock. No trifling, common conversation is to be indulged. God looks upon and into every secret thing of life. By some a constant battle is maintained for self-control. Daily they strive silently and prayerfully against harshness of speech and temper. These strivings may never be appreciated by human beings. They may get no praise from human lips for keeping back the hasty words which sought for utterance. 13LtMs, Ms 126, 1898, par. 4

The world will never see these conquests, and if it could, it would only despise the conquerors. But in heaven’s record they are registered as overcomers. There is One who witnesses every secret combat and every silent victory, and He says, “He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.” [Proverbs 16:32.] 13LtMs, Ms 126, 1898, par. 5

The parents who are channels of light in the home are acknowledged by all heaven as faithful stewards of the manifold grace of God. They are teachers, educating their children in lines that make them considerate and compassionate. They know that as Christ’s representatives they are dealing with human minds. Ever they are learning the ways of the beauty of holiness, communicating to others the knowledge and wisdom they receive from God. They take their children with them in the heavenward way, leading and enlightening them step by step. 13LtMs, Ms 126, 1898, par. 6