Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 15 (1900)

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Lt 105, 1900

Haskell, Brother and Sister [S. N.]

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

July 4, 1900

This letter is published in entirety in KC 125-127. +Note

Dear Brother and Sister Haskell:

I sit here on my bed this cold July morning, trying to write to you. I have woolen mitts on my hands, leaving my fingers free to write. I place my lamp on one side at my left hand, rather than behind me, and then the light shines on my paper in just the right way. Sitting on the bed is the easiest position for me, and I call this my throne. It is a little past two o’clock. I continue to be an early riser, and I write every day. There has been considerable rainy weather here this winter, and this has kept me indoors. 15LtMs, Lt 105, 1900, par. 1

Although I carry a heavy burden for the work in Australia and America, yet I also have a thankful heart for the mercy and gracious loving-kindness of my God. Notwithstanding the fact that there is war and bloodshed, and nations are preparing for battle, thanksgiving should arise from our hearts because the Sun of Righteousness never sets. The mightiest earthly potentates may be engaged in battle for the supremacy, but the children of God, whose lives are hid with Christ <in God,> have nothing to fear. Their Refuge is safe and sure. 15LtMs, Lt 105, 1900, par. 2

Christ has declared, “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:18-20.] This is the work God’s watchmen are to do. 15LtMs, Lt 105, 1900, par. 3

My brother, there is danger of those in our ranks making a mistake in regard to receiving the Holy Ghost. Many suppose an emotion or a rapture of feeling to be an evidence of the presence of the Holy Spirit. There is danger that right sentiments will not be understood, and that Christ’s words, “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you” [verse 20], will lose their significance. There is danger that original devisings and superstitious imaginings will take the place of the Scriptures. 15LtMs, Lt 105, 1900, par. 4

Tell our people: “Be not anxious to bring in something not revealed in the Word. Keep close to Christ.” Remember His words, “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Verse 20.] He is with us as we teach the words He spoke in the Old Testament as well as in the New. He who gave commandment in the New Testament is the One also who gave the instruction contained in the Old Testament. The Old and the New Testaments are both sacred, for they both contain the words of Christ. All communication from heaven to earth since Adam’s fall has come through Christ. He who believes the instruction contained in the New Testament and in the Old, doing those things which Christ has commanded therein, has the Saviour always with him. 15LtMs, Lt 105, 1900, par. 5

In his record of the giving of the commission Mark says, “He said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be dammed. And these signs shall follow them that believe: In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” [Mark 16:15-18.] These words are to be literally fulfilled. This is the work the Lord Jesus Christ will do through His appointed agencies. “So then, after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. And they went forth and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following.” [Verses 19, 20.] 15LtMs, Lt 105, 1900, par. 6

Let us remember that the Word Christ has commanded us to preach to all nations, kindreds, tongues, and peoples is confirmed by the Holy Spirit. This is God’s plan of work. Christ is the mighty power which confirms the Word, bringing men and women, through conversion to the truth, to an understanding faith, making them willing to do whatsoever He had commanded them. The human agent, the seen instrument, is to preach the Word, and the Lord Jesus, the unseen agency, by His Holy Spirit is to make the Word efficacious and powerful. 15LtMs, Lt 105, 1900, par. 7

The law of God is to be presented in its true bearing. Paul bears testimony regarding this law. “What shall we say then?” he asks. “Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin but by the law,” which is the detector of sin. “For I had not known lust except the law has said, Thou shall not covet. But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead. For I was alive without the law once; but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died. And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death. For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.” [Romans 7:7-11.] 15LtMs, Lt 105, 1900, par. 8

Because of this does Paul say, Have nothing to do with the law? Oh no; this is not his conclusion. Sin is the transgression of the law, and by the law is the knowledge of sin. Paul saw sin in all its hideous deformity. The law pointed him to Christ, the Healer of sin which is repented of and confessed. “Wherefore,” Paul declared, “the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.” [Verse 12.] Why then do men in their transgression oppose the law of God? Because it condemns sin. 15LtMs, Lt 105, 1900, par. 9