Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 15 (1900)


Ms 76a, 1900



December 19, 1900 [typed]

Previously unpublished.

It is a solemn thing to live, because we are not our own, but the Lord’s, bought with the blood of His only begotten Son. Think of the estimate God has placed on us. When we were ready to perish, He sent His Son to die for us, that we might have an opportunity to regain what has been lost by sin. “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16.] This infinite sacrifice connects us with God. Satan cannot hold us if we will accept Christ as our hope, our life, our personal Saviour. The spotless, sinless Son of God has borne our sins in His own body on the cross, that we might live unto God. When we truly receive Christ, we live His life, not our own. Our highest aim is to do His will and represent His character. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 1

Christ bore our sins that we might live unto righteousness. We were as sheep going astray, but He came from the heavenly courts to bring us back to the fold. “Forasmuch as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same mind; for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin, that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lust of men, but to the will of God.” [1 Peter 4:1, 2.] 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 2

Christ died to make it possible for men to keep the law. Those who will to do the will of God may live a life of loyalty. But all are left to make their choice for themselves. God forces no one to accept the advantages secured for him at an infinite cost. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 3

Christ lived on this earth the life He desires His disciples to live. Those who receive His instruction and study His words gain an increased knowledge of God and can bring from the treasure house of the soul things new and old to give to others. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 4

In His manner of instruction Christ has given the secret of all effectual teaching. He did not appeal only to the understanding, He sought to reach the heart. By the things of nature He illustrated spiritual truth. As He walked through the fields with His disciples, He pointed them to the familiar objects which met their eyes, and by them [He] impressed His lessons on their minds. In no other way could He have made so lasting an impression. Thus He called forth questions which brought out more clearly the force of truth. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 5


Our Stewardship

I call upon those who claim to believe the truth to remember that they each have a stewardship. The Lord has a work for everyone to do. He has given His people varied talents, all of which they are to hold in trust for Him. But there is not one in a thousand who fully appreciates the privilege thus accorded him of blessing and benefiting his fellow men. Few use their talents to the best advantage. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 6

Christ says, “He that will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” [Mark 8:34.] Let us think of the sacrifice He made to secure our redemption. Let us study how we can most intelligently practice His instructions. We are His by creation and by redemption. We have been “bought with a price;” therefore let us do all in our power to glorify Him who has purchased us. [1 Corinthians 6:20.] 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 7

God calls upon us to go to those in error and darkness, and point them to the right way. How can they hear without a preacher? It is not only the ordained ministers who are to do this work. Ministering angels will co-operate with the lay members of the church who labor unselfishly for the Master. We should do much more than we have done for perishing souls. Scarcely one-thousandth part of the work is being done that ought to be done. Souls are perishing in their sins, while many of those who know the truth are asleep, doing nothing to save their fellow beings from ruin. The Bible, God’s great text book of education, is superficially read and therefore superficially understood and superficially practiced. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 8

Time is fast passing. Let us remember that while life is ours, the solemn responsibility rests upon us of working in co-operation with God. Do your very best to accomplish the work God desires to have accomplished. Throw aside your narrow, selfish plans. Remember that we have a message of the largest magnitude and the highest importance. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 9


The Gospel Invitation

“Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money, come ye, buy and eat, yea come, buy wine and oil without money and without price.” [Isaiah 55:1.] 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 10

Rich spiritual blessings are freely offered to all who will accept them. The question is asked, “Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread; and your labor for that which satisfieth not? Hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness. Incline your ear, and come unto me; hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David. Behold, I have given him for a witness to the people, as a leader and a commander to the people. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 11

“Behold, thou shalt call a nation that thou knowest not, and nations that knew not thee shall run unto thee because of the Lord thy God, and for the Holy One of Israel; for he hath glorified thee. Seek ye the Lord while he may be found; call ye upon him while he is near; let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts, and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him, and to our God; for he will abundantly pardon.” [Verses 2-7.] 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 12

The law of God is the only standard of character. By this law all will be judged. Those who are disobedient will be condemned; those who are obedient will be rewarded. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 13


Time and Place of the General Conference

We assemble in General Conference to lay plans for the carrying forward of the most sacred work ever committed to mortals. The winter is not the most favorable time for holding such an important meeting. In the past the holding of the conference at this time of the year has injured the health of some of our workers. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 14

We need to reason from cause to effect. The open air is much more favorable to healthful thought and healthful action than heated rooms. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 15

Decided reforms should be made in our conference sessions regarding the hours of business meetings. Proper hours for retiring should be observed, and food should be eaten at regular intervals. As we plan for the advancement of truth and righteousness in the world, we are not to forget to practice the principles of health reform. We believe and advocate these principles. Should we not practice what we teach? 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 16

We need to see more clearly the connection between nature and the God of nature. Nature is not God, but in nature we see wonderful evidence of God’s work. His power speaks from every tree, every shrub, every leaf. The things of nature are an expression of the mind of God. We should all be lovers of the beauties of nature, for they speak to us of God. We do not enjoy half the privileges and blessings we might if we had a deeper realization of the close connection between God and His works and between God and His people. 15LtMs, Ms 76a, 1900, par. 17