Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 13 (1898)


Ms 193, 1898

Opening Service in Stanmore Church

Stanmore, New South Wales, Australia

April 1898

Portions of this manuscript are published in HP 283; 17MR 26.

Our first meeting in the chapel just erected was held April 23, 1898. There were about two hundred assembled. My heart was filled with gratitude to God for this great blessing we were privileged to enjoy. While we might number the visible human agencies present, we knew that there were heavenly agencies present to minister unto those who were worshipers in this house, built where His people may assemble to worship Him. 13LtMs, Ms 193, 1898, par. 1

We see a very neat, convenient house of worship. We acknowledge God as the great and unperceived Actor, and the human instrumentalities co-operating with the divine agencies. This house has been built for the purpose of cooperating with God in the great work of saving souls. Christ clothed His divinity with humanity that He might associate with the fallen race, and through His own merits might elevate man to be a partaker of the divine nature. There must be a cooperation of the human with the divine. God must work within, imparting to man moral powers and quickening moral susceptibilities. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him might not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16. He has, with Jesus, opened the whole treasure house to all who accept Him as their personal Saviour. 13LtMs, Ms 193, 1898, par. 2

The living church of God is individually a habitation of God through the Spirit, that man may become a well-built temple for the indwelling of the Holy Spirit of God, that the Lord Jesus Christ may dwell in his innermost being, ennobling and sanctifying his human nature by His divine attributes, making man a temple for the living God. Man need never dwell upon the inefficiency of human effort, as if it is presumptuous [to think] that man’s human agency is essential in the Lord’s great plan of salvation. 13LtMs, Ms 193, 1898, par. 3

Man can accomplish nothing without God, but God has chosen that His only begotten Son should come in the form of humanity to stand at the head of the fallen race. His divinity and humanity combined are a lesson to the church that God has taken humanity into co-partnership with divinity. Humanity represents Christ’s long human arm which encircles the race. Thus, with firm reliance upon the divine energy, human endeavor finds its place in all the working out of the plan of redemption. The great power of God stands as the resource to supply the necessities of the human agent. We must be laborers together with God. 13LtMs, Ms 193, 1898, par. 4