Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 15 (1900)

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Lt 28, 1900

Prescott, Brother and Sister [W. W.]

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

February 17, 1900

This letter is published in entirety in 14MR 158-167. +Note

Dear Brother and Sister Prescott:

I have commenced several letters to you, but have not been able to finish them before something else has come in and taken all my time. I would be very much pleased to have the privilege of seeing you again, here in Cooranbong. I was very sorry that Elder Waggoner did not come, but I knew that he was needed in London, and therefore we could not feel as aggrieved as we otherwise would have done. I know that there is a great work to be done in London, and I would be pleased to be with you and help you in the work. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 1

We have entered upon a time when the most earnest gospel missionary work is to be done. But I have been given light, decided light, that the so-called medical missionary work in America has absorbed means and labor that were needed in other fields, where a strong influence for the truth should be maintained. If we should all engage in the work that Dr. Kellogg has been doing for the lowest class of people, what would become of the work that is to be done in the places where the third angel’s message, the truth upon the Sabbath and the second coming of our Lord, has never been proclaimed? 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 2

The third angel’s message is to be given to our world in clear, distinct lines. Some have thought that it is best to gradually prepare the way for the presentation of the Sabbath question. The Sabbath truth is <the message> to be proclaimed with a loud voice, as represented in the fifty-eighth chapter of Isaiah. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 3

And in the fourteenth chapter of Revelation we read, “The third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, or receive his mark in his forehead or in his hand, the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb.” [Verses 9, 10.] This message embraces the two preceding messages. It is represented as being given with a loud voice, that is, with the power of the Holy Spirit. The impression made by this message will be proportionate to the earnestness with which it is proclaimed. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 4

John beholds the loyal people of God, and he exclaims, “Here is the patience of the saints; here are they that keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.” [Verse 12.] Babylon is represented as holding a wine cup in her hand, from which she makes all nations drink. The nations commit spiritual fornication by divorcing themselves from God and trampling on His commandments. The time in which the saints live is a trying one for those who refuse to receive the mark of the beast and his image, but through it all the saints show their patience. They continue to be steadfast in the faith, even should their firmness cost them their lives. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 5

We know that now everything is at stake. The third angel’s message is to be <at this time> regarded as of the highest importance. It is a life and death question. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 6

The eighteenth chapter of Revelation reveals the importance of presenting the truth in no measured terms, but with boldness and power. There must be no toning down of the truth, no muffling of the message for this time. Satan has devised a state of things whereby the proclamation of the third angel’s message shall be bound about. We must beware of his plans and methods. The third angel’s message is to be strengthened and confirmed. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 7

John writes, “After these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory. And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundances of her delicacies. And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities.” [Verses 1-5.] This call is similar to the call made by the first and second angels. By the third angel the call is again repeated: “Come out of her, my people.” [Verse 4.] 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 8

Satan will so mingle his deceptions with truth that side issues will be created to turn the attention of the people from the great issue, the test to be brought upon the people of God in these last days. From the light that God has given me, I know that the gospel message for this time is being turned aside for work among the lowest class of people. This work is being made the all-absorbing work for this time, but this is not in God’s order. But it is a never-ending work, and if it is carried on as it has been in the past, all the powers of God’s people will be required to counter-balance it, and the work of preparing a people to stand amid the perils of the last days will never be done. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 9

Everyone who has heard and accepted the third angel’s message is to hold the banner of truth, unstained and uncorrupted, higher and still higher. I was shown large numbers engaged in work for the outcasts, while all through God’s moral vineyard were fields white for the harvest. Every organization among our people, as well as every individual, is responsible to God to give the last message of warning to the world with a loud voice. Strong, decided appeals are to be made in the very best way. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 10

And in no better way can the masses be reached than by camp meetings. These meetings reach all classes. Thus men and women are helped to plant their feet upon the platform of eternal truth. These meetings should be attended by laborers of varied talents and gifts. The most determined efforts should be made to arouse the people. At the close of every meeting decisions should be called for. Let all see that we are in earnest, because we have a wonderful message from heaven. Tell the people that the Lord is coming in judgment, and that neither rulers nor kings, wealth nor influence, will be able to stand against or ward off the judgments soon to fall. In many places these judgments are already falling, yet by their attitude worldlings and church members say plainly, We want none of these rebukes. We want none of your warnings. We will not hear. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 11

“And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.” [Revelation 11:19.] 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 12

There are only two parties upon the earth—those who stand under the bloodstained banner of Jesus Christ and those who stand under the black banner of rebellion. Those who stand under Christ’s banner bear the sign of obedience spoken of in Exodus 31:12-18. Please read this Scripture carefully. In the twelfth chapter of Revelation is represented the last great conflict between the obedient and the disobedient. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 13

“The dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” [Verse 17.] “I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb, but he spake as a dragon. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by reason of the miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by the sword, and did live. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 14

“And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. And he causeth all both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads; and that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.” [Revelation 13:11-17.] 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 15

Satan will work miracles to deceive those who dwell upon the earth. Spiritualism will do its work by causing the dead to be personated. Those religious bodies who refuse to hear God’s messages of warning will be under strong deception, and will unite with the civil power to persecute the saints. The Protestant churches will unite with the papal power in persecuting the commandment-keeping people of God. This union constitutes the great system of persecution which will exercise spiritual tyranny over the consciences of men. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 16

“He had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.” [Verse 11.] Though professing to be followers of the Lamb of God, men become imbued with the spirit of the dragon. They profess to be meek and humble but they speak and legislate with the spirit of Satan, showing by their actions that they are the opposite of what they profess to be. This lamb-like power unites with the dragon in making war upon those who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. And Satan unites with Protestants and papists, acting in consort with them as the god of this world, dictating to men as if they were the subjects of his kingdom, to be handled and governed and controlled as he pleases. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 17

If men will not agree to trample under foot the commandments of God, the spirit of the dragon is revealed. They are imprisoned, brought before councils, and fined. “He causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads.” “He had power to give life to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.” [Verses 16, 15.] Thus Satan usurps the prerogatives of Jehovah. The man of sin sits in the seat of God, proclaiming himself to be God, and acting above God. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 18

There is a marked contrast between those who bear the seal of God and those who worship the beast and his image. The Lord’s faithful servants will receive the bitterest persecution from false teachers, who will not hear the Word of God, and who prepare stumbling blocks to put in the way of those who would hear. But God’s people are not to fear. Satan cannot go beyond his limit. The Lord will be the defense of His people. He regards the injury done to His servants for the truth’s sake as done to Himself. When the last decision has been made, when all have taken sides, either for Christ and the commandments or for the great apostate, God will arise in His power, and the mouths of those who have blasphemed against Him will be forever stopped. Every opposing power will receive its punishment. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 19

“Therefore prophesy thou against them all these words, and say unto them, The Lord shall roar from on high, and utter his voice from his holy habitation; he shall give a shout, as they that tread the grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth. A noise shall come even to the ends of the earth; for the Lord hath a controversy with the nations, he will plead with all flesh; he will give them that are wicked to the sword. ... Thus saith the Lord of hosts, Behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great whirlwind shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth. And the slain of the Lord shall be at that day from one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth: they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung upon the ground.” [Jeremiah 25:30-33.] 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 20

The foregoing thoughts are just a few which I have written out in a crude way. It is not necessary for me to go into further particulars. I know you will understand these things. The reason why I write thus is that others, who know not what they are about, may come to their senses. The Lord has given each man his appointed work. But the special work called medical missionary work is absorbing so much that the greater and far more essential and important work of giving the message of warning to the world has been hindered. This message is to be proclaimed at our camp meetings, and in a most earnest and decided manner. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 21

The trumpet is to give a certain sound. And wherever the truth has been proclaimed and people have been awakened and converted to the truth, they are at once to unite in enterprises of charity. Wherever Bible truth has been presented, a work of practical godliness is to be commenced. Wherever a church is established, true missionary work is to be done for the helpless and suffering <in that place.> 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 22

Paul wrote to the Corinthian church: “Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia; how that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality. For to their power I bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves; praying us with much entreaty that we would receive the gift, that take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints. And this they did, not as we hoped, but first gave their ownselves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God. Insomuch that we desired Titus that as he begun, so he would also finish in you the same grace also.” [2 Corinthians 8:1-6.] 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 23

There had been a famine at Jerusalem, and Paul knew that many of the Christians there had been scattered abroad, and that those who remained would be likely to be deprived of human sympathy and exposed to religious enmity. Therefore he exhorted the churches to send pecuniary assistance to their brethren in Jerusalem. More than a year before, the work of collecting help for the church at Jerusalem had begun, and Paul felt that the matter should no longer be delayed, that the amount pledged should be gathered in and sent to Jerusalem. The amount raised by the churches of Macedonia had exceeded the expectations of the apostles. The people were filled with joy and gladness because they could help, and they were willing to do “beyond their power.” [Verse 3.] 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 24

This is the true basis of charity, according to the Word of God. Men’s feelings may become greatly moved as they see human beings suffering as the result of their own course of action. There are those who are specially impressed to come into direct contact with this class, and the Lord gives them a commission to work in the worst places of the earth, doing what they can to redeem outcasts and bring them where they will be under the care of the churches. But the Lord has not called Seventh-day Adventists to make this work a specialty. He would not have them, in this work, engross many workers or exhaust the treasury by erecting institutions for the care of outcasts, thus hindering the work of foreign missions. God calls for one hundred missionaries where there is now one. These are to go forth to foreign countries. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 25

The work of the ministry is to retain its sacred, holy character. Disappointing results may be seen, as in Christ’s day in the case of Judas. And Paul mentions some who departed from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits. Others for love of gain left the work in which the apostles took such an interest and carried forward with such rejoicing. But although errors may have to be corrected, although some of the workers cause great sorrow, yet the ministry is not to be belittled or ignored. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 26

More aggressive work must be done. Plants must be made in the cities. Now is the time to give the third angel’s message. But this cannot be done in church buildings. Camp meetings must be held, not one mammoth camp meeting, but several camp meetings in different places. The holding of camp meetings is one of the most successful ways of working for the Lord. These meetings should continue two or three weeks, and during this time earnest work should be done for believers and unbelievers. The work done at these meetings should never be of a cheap, low grade. Men of the best spiritual gifts should attend, men who can give the messages for this time, and properly bring out the features of our faith which make us what we are—Seventh-day Adventists. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 27

Camp meetings are not to be made business meetings, so that the public will lose the precious opportunity of hearing the words of truth. Let short, pointed discourses be given, and after a discourse has been given, ask those who wish to follow Christ to signify it. Then take them into a tent by themselves, and pray with and for them. Hold fast to those interested, until they are confirmed in the faith. There are too few revival efforts made. There is too little seeking of the Lord. Those who have had great light and many opportunities and privileges should be laborers together with God. They must seek the Lord earnestly and yoke up with Christ. Only thus can they do effective work. To our camp meetings come the very classes for whom we are to labor. Let every Seventh-day Adventist who attends gird on the armor, feeling that he is to be a laborer together with God. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 28

We are servants of Christ, and every one is to arm for the defense of the truth which the people need. We must study how we can approach them in such a way as to win their confidence. In the Scriptures the church of Christ is represented as striving, laboring, working, fighting the good fight of faith, and praying in faith, ever ready to unsheathe the Sword of the Spirit. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 29

The truth is to be the food given to the souls ready to perish. Call the attention of the people to the signs of the times. There are wars and rumors of wars. Nation is rising against nation. Selfishness and covetousness lead to violence, crime, and all kinds of wickedness. Nation is watching nation, to see if there is not some advantage to be gained. A concession made by one nation only opens the way for another concession to be called for. The presumptuous, daring deeds of unholy ambition, done to gain strength by robbing others, show that men do not realize that he that taketh the sword shall perish with the sword. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 30

Keep before the mind the history of the old world. Read it. Understand the situation as described in Genesis, by the inspiration of the Spirit of God. The wickedness of men was so great that God would no longer bear with them, but by a flood washed the earth of its moral pollution. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 31

The signs of Christ’s coming are fulfilling. Time is precious, too precious to be frittered away. God needs men who will give the warning message, and men who will sell and give alms, that the work of warning may not be hindered. The work has been and is being bond about by the creation of large, expensive buildings, as if these buildings would proclaim the last message of mercy to a guilty world. There is money enough to carry forward the work if all will act as God’s stewards, giving back to Him his own. The strictest economy is to be exercised. The aggressive warfare is to be carried forward with firmness and determination, for Satan has come down with great power to work with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish. 15LtMs, Lt 28, 1900, par. 32