Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 13

368/420

Ms 153, 1898

Notes of Travel

Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

October 28, 1898

Portions of this manuscript are published in Ev 296; TMK 70, 340; 4Bio 368.

We all feel very grateful to our heavenly Father for the blessings He has given us in our labors at this place. We arrived here at twelve p.m. October 13. During the time of this meeting I have spoken before large congregations eight times, and six times before a much smaller number. The very first evening of our meeting the large tent was full; about the same number were out Sabbath afternoon, and every evening with the exception of two, the tent has been packed. On the first Sunday afternoon there was supposed to be 1,000 people present, and on the second Sunday the number was estimated at fifteen hundred. Both Sunday afternoons members of Parliament were present, who listened with the deepest interest. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 1

The Brisbane papers had given notice that Mrs. White, a lady of seventy years of age, would speak Sabbath and Sunday afternoons. The people wondered greatly that Mrs. White’s voice could be heard distinctly by all in the large tent, and by the wall of people who stood in solid columns on the outside. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 2

On the last Sunday of the meetings the Lord gave me a great victory. I was much exhausted. The air in the tent at the morning meeting had not been fresh, and the curtains had not been raised to give ventilation. After uniting with the people in prayer I stood up to speak, and staggered three times while talking. It was noticed by all, but I would not sit down, neither did I fall. The tent was then raised, but I left the tent after talking thirty minutes. This was at the early morning meeting, at six o’clock. I seemed to have no strength at all, but at three p.m. I went on the platform. I had a portion of Scripture to speak upon, but I could not remember what I meant to bring before the people. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 3

I stood up, and another portion of Scripture came into my mind. I had been a little hoarse, but I felt that the angel of the Lord was by my side, for my voice was clear and full and distinct. Some who had given up their seats to strangers, and had gone into their tents, said that they heard every word from the beginning to the close. I spoke for one hour and a half upon the subject of temperance. After I returned to my home I had no fears that I had not done as well as I ought. I felt that it was not Ellen G. White who had spoken, but that the Lord had spoken through the frail instrument. I felt my soul softened and subdued by the power of God. My heart was full of peace and joy in the Lord. I felt that I had indeed been worked that day by the Holy Spirit. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 4

The contributions that afternoon amounted to three pounds eleven shillings. The people acted as if a spell was upon them, as though they could not leave the tent or the grounds. At the close of my address, Brother Semmens came in with his talk upon health, and he had a large audience. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 5

I am glad that I came to this place. I was hardly willing to come, and decided not to do so, but in the visions of the night I was addressing a large audience, whose hands were reached out as if they were saying, We are in darkness. We need light. Will you help us? I was shown several companies, reaching out their hands to me and asking for help. I looked at these companies varying in size, but all painfully in earnest, and the words came as distinctly to me as though spoken by Christ Himself, “Say not ye, there are four months, and then cometh harvest? Behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white, already to harvest. And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together.” [John 4:35, 36.] 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 6

I tried to make myself believe that this meant the places within thirty miles of Cooranbong, Newcastle and Maitland, and several other places nearer than this. The standard of truth has not yet been lifted in these places. I told brother Herbert Lacey that I would help him to make an effort in Newcastle, that I would speak to the people as often as possible. He is established there with his wife and a number of workers. But again the scene of the people calling for help was presented before me. The same voice said, They are as sheep that have no shepherd. Then I decided to attend the camp meeting, and the Lord, I am sure, has been teaching me. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 7

We travelled in a sleeper, Sara having a berth on one side of the room and I on the other. We did not get to our berth before eleven o’clock,. In the morning, a long while before day, I was looking out of the window, viewing the landscape, which was dreary enough. I was seeking the Lord most earnestly for physical strength and mental clearness and spiritual power. I was awake one or two hours, then I fell asleep. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 8

After a time I was awakened by a voice saying, Look at those two clouds; it was just such clouds as these that enshrouded the heavenly host who proclaimed to the shepherds the birth of the world’s Redeemer. I looked out of the car window, and there were two large-sized white clouds, as white as snow. They were distinct, separate clouds. They did not disappear. One would approach and touch the other, and for a moment they would blend together. Then they would separate, and remain as distinct as before. This continued through the entire forenoon. At twelve o’clock we changed cars, and I did not see the clouds any more. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 9

I was deeply impressed with the thoughts that the angels of God were enshrouded in these clouds, and were going before us. The peace of God came into my heart, and I was brought very near to my Saviour. Since we have seen the wonderful interest here, I am more than ever sure that those clouds enshrouded heavenly angels, and that they were sent from the courts above to move upon the hearts of the people. In this effort we have made, thousands have heard truths which they never heard before. We have faith to believe that angels of God have been commissioned to press back the powers of darkness, that unbelief should not have the supremacy. The Holy Spirit can work with the efforts of God’s servants, that the sword of the Spirit may flash right and left, and cut through the fleshy tables of the heart, bringing conviction to human consciences and piercing the recesses of the soul. The light given me is that if we will not carry about with us the rubbish of self, if we will purify our souls by obeying the truth, individual experiences will be obtained. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 10

October 29

In the visions of the night I was in a meeting where Bible lessons were being given. Ministers and workers were present. We said, We have the great Teacher with us today. All sat listening with deepest interest. He said: There is a work before you in this place. You will need to present truth in its simplicity. Speak to the people of the things which most concern their present and eternal good. Bring them to the waters of life. Do not present before them subjects that will arouse controversy, and which will need someone of experience close by your side to defend the things you may present. Meet the people where they are. Your study of the Scriptures must not be of any cheap or casual order. It must not be of a character to perplex the mind. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 11

Do not cause them to worry over things you may have seen, but which they have not yet seen, unless it is of vital consequence to the saving of the souls of the ignorant. In all that you say, know that you have something that is essential and worthy of the time you take to say it, and of the time of the hearers to hear it. Speak of things that will instruct, bringing light into every word. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 12

Do not encourage the presentation of Scripture in any way to encourage vainglory in the one who shall open the Word to others. The work for this time is to bring students and workers to the place where they will deal with subjects in a serious, solemn, plain manner, that there may be no time uselessly employed in this great work. Do not miss the mark. Time is too short to reveal all that might be opened up to view; eternity will be required to know the length and breadth, the depth and height, of the Scriptures. There are truths of more importance to some souls than others. Skill is needed in educating in Scriptural line. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 13

“Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.” [Psalm 40:7, 8.] “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father;) full of grace and truth.” [John 1:14.] God was “manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.” [1 Timothy 3:16.] 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 14

“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who being in the form of God thought it not robbery to be equal with God: but made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross: ... that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” [Philippians 2:5-8, 10, 11.] 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 15

“In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins, who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: for by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him and for him, and he is before all things, and by him all things consist.” [Colossians 1:14-17.] 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 16

“And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne, and the beasts, and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb which was slain, to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing. And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them heard I saying, Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb forever and ever. And the four beasts said, Amen. ... And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshiped him that liveth forever and ever.” [Revelation 5:11-14.] 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 17

In the Isle of Patmos John saw the things which God desired him to give to the people. Here is a theme worthy of our contemplation. Here are large and comprehensive lessons, which all the angelic hosts are now seeking to communicate. Infinite wisdom, infinite love, infinite justice, infinite mercy—depths, heights, lengths, breadths! Numberless pens have been employed to represent the life and character and mediatorial work of Christ, and yet to every mind through whom the Holy Spirit works, these themes are presented fresh and new, just in accordance with the mind and spirit of the human agent. The Lord Jesus promised that the Spirit He would send would recall His words to the minds of those prepared to receive them. After His resurrection He opened their understanding, that they might understand the Scriptures. Up to that time the disciples had not comprehended them, for the rubbish of rabbinical lore had hidden the truth from their view. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 18

The truth if received is capable of constant expansion and new developments. It will increase in brightness as we behold it, and grow in height and depth as we aspire to grasp it. Thus it will elevate us to the standard of perfection, and give us faith and trust in God our strength for the work before us. We need the truth as it is in Jesus. We desire to make the people understand what Christ is to them, and what are the responsibilities they are called upon to accept in Him. As His representatives and witnesses, we need to come to a full understanding of the saving truth which we must know by an experimental knowledge. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 19

“In whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of our sins.” [Colossians 1:14.] This is the great practical truth which must be stamped upon the soul. It is of the greatest importance that all should comprehend the greatness and power of the truth to those who receive it. “In him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.” [Colossians 2:9.] 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 20

Men need to understand that Deity suffered and sank under the agonies of Calvary. Yet Jesus Christ whom God gave for the ransom of the world purchased the church with His own blood. The Majesty of heaven was made to suffer at the hands of religious zealots, who claimed to be the most enlightened people upon the face of the earth. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 21

Men whom God had created, and who were dependent upon Him for every moment of their lives, who claimed to be the children of Abraham, worked out the wrath of Satan upon the innocent Son of the infinite God. While Christ was bearing the heavy guilt incurred by transgression of the law, while in the very act of bearing our sins, of carrying our sorrows, He was mocked. By whom? By the chief priests and rulers. “And they that passed by him, reviled him, wagging their heads, and saying, Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save thyself. If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross. Likewise also the chief priests and elders, mocking Him with the scribes and elders said, He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him come down from the cross; and we will believe him. He trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him. For he said, I am the Son of God. The thieves also, which were crucified with him cast the same in his teeth.” [Matthew 27:39-44.] 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 22

It was there that mercy and truth met together, righteousness and peace embraced each other. Here is a theme which all need to understand. Here are lengths and breadths, depths and heights, that pass any computation. Set this before all students and workers again and again, that they, “setting forth the Lord crucified among us,” may make it a fresh subject. [See Galatians 3:1.] 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 23

The character of Christ is an infinitely perfect character. The Word declares Him. He is lifted up, and proclaimed as the One who gave His life for the life of the world. You have not the least right to trust in any man, or to make flesh your arm. Christ gave His own life, that all the disloyal and disobedient might realize the truth of the promise given in the first chapter of John, “As many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” [Verse 12.] Tell it over and over again. We may become the sons of God, members of the royal family, children of the heavenly King. All who accept Jesus Christ and hold the beginning of their confidence firm unto the end will be heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ to “an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserve in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation, ready to be revealed in the last time.” [1 Peter 1:4, 5.] 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 24

Among which class will those who are now present be found, the class who keep the commandments of God, or those who disregard and transgress His holy law? How many will hear the words spoken to them, “Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl, for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, your garments are moth-eaten, your gold and your silver is cankered, and the rust of them shall be a swift witness against you. Ye have heaped treasures together for the last days. Behold, the hire of the laborers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth, and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth. Ye have lived in pleasure on the earth, and have been wanton. Ye have nourished your hearts, as in the day of slaughter. Ye have condemned and killed the just, and he doth not resist you.” [James 5:1-6.] 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 25

This is the condition of our world today. We have reason to expect oppression because of our religious faith, because we see and understand that our obligations to God are to obey His commandments, notwithstanding that in so doing we have to disregard the sentiments of the religious world. The situation of the world is expressed in this chapter. Those who do not obey the principles of the law of God, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength; and thy neighbor as thyself” [Luke 10:27]; those who will not comply with the conditions of the Word of God, will place themselves in opposition to those who do obey. And these will not be satisfied with transgressing the law of God themselves. They will demand that those who are conscientiously keeping the commandments of God shall follow in their steps. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 26

Men will venture to take into their own finite hands the work of compelling their fellow men to violate the law of God. From the people of God the prayer will go up as it did from the lips of David as he saw that in the times in which he lived men were becoming bold in their transgression, not only refusing to receive God’s law as the rule of their life, but putting upon that law marked contempt. When men reach the point of insolence and disobedience, David expected that God would interpose, and that there would be an end to His forbearance, that He would allow His righteous indignation to be manifested in retribution. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 27

The Lord will not long bear with the bold and violent men who assume the prerogatives that belong alone to Him. Each century of bold apostasy has only treasured up wrath against the day of wrath. Christ bids the abandoned of His day fill up the measure of his fathers, that it might at last be time for God to work. In that day it will be seen that it is a terrible thing to have worn out the patience of God. 13LtMs, Ms 153, 1898, par. 28