Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 16 (1901)


Ms 80, 1901

A Message to the Los Angeles Church


August 19, 1901

Portions of this manuscript are published in AH 174; CG 500-501.

This morning I have a message for the church in Los Angeles. The past camp-meeting will prove to you a savor of life unto life or of death unto death. Let it not be said of any one of you, “Ephraim is joined to his idols; let him alone.” [Hosea 4:17.] To the unfruitful fig tree Christ said, “Let no fruit grow on you henceforth forever.” [Matthew 21:19.] God forbid that these words should be spoken of you. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 1

Fathers and mothers, your children have been largely left untrained, and God is displeased. You have not set before your children a good example. Let there be a different showing. Take up your neglected work. You need to be alarmed as you see your neglect to faithfully instruct your children. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 2

Some who have recently received baptism are ignorant of the deep meaning of this solemn rite. This is a result of a neglect on the part of their parents to educate them in spiritual things. Parents, for Christ’s sake, as you value the souls of your children, make it your first work to train them for the Lord. Those who have a knowledge of the truth, but who have not been sanctified through the truth, must now learn as never before what it means to reveal the meekness and lowliness of Christ. They should now prepare their hearts to receive the golden oil from the two olive trees as represented in the Word of God. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 3

Take heed, parents; for you are not ready for the Lord’s coming. Take heed to thyself and to the doctrine. Thyself, father; thyself, mother. Reform your individual characters. You are not prepared to do justice to your children or to yourselves. You must first humble your hearts before God, and overcome your defects. Talk less, and pray a great deal more. Receive the faith that works by love and purifies the soul. Then the inner lamp, trimmed and burning, will shine forth brightly in faithful, earnest, consecrated work for your children. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 4

Fathers and mothers, consecrate the tongue to the Lord. “By thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” [Matthew 12:37.] Let there be no loud-voiced, angry commands heard in the home. Subdue the voice. Pity the children who have not had wise training. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 5

Remember that it is not merely push and activity that the Lord requires. He wants you to obey the command, “Be still, and know that I am God.” [Psalm 46:10.] Surrender your will to Him. Has it not in your own hands done enough mischief in the home? Place it now in the hands of the Lord. God will give fathers and mothers a rich experience in the knowledge of Christ Jesus our Lord if they will take themselves in hand and rule the spirit. When your will is under the control of the Holy Spirit, you can be workers together with God. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 6

Parents, a reformation is needed in your home. You must consent to be ruled by the Holy Spirit before you can rule your children wisely. You must be trained by the Lord before you can properly train the little ones He has placed in your care. Your children have not been trained to habits of usefulness, and therefore they have feeble ideas of what it means to be a Christian. God calls upon you to teach them to prepare to be members of the royal family, children of the heavenly King. Co-operate with God by working diligently for their salvation. If they err, do not scold them. Never taunt them with being baptized and yet doing wrong. Remember that they have much to learn in regard to the duties of a child of God. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 7

Have patience, fathers and mothers. Often your past neglect will make your work hard. But God will give you strength if you will trust in Him. Deal wisely and tenderly with your children. Remember that they are reproductions of yourselves, that from you they have received tendencies to wrong. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 8

This is your day of trust. Soon will come your day of reckoning. Take up your work with earnest prayer and faithful endeavor. Teach your children that it is their privilege to receive every day the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Let Christ find you His helping hand, to carry out His purposes. By searching the Scriptures, learn what the will of the Lord is. Remember that only through justice and mercy and the love of God can you be saved, and that thus alone, through your ministration, can your children be saved. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 9

By an unwise course of action you can make the baptism of your children of none effect. By prayer you may gain an experience that will make your ministry for your children a perfect success. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 10

“Who then is that faithful and wise servant whom the lord hath made ruler over his household?” [Matthew 24:45.] Fathers and mothers, ask yourselves this question. Take your children and teach them how to live the life of a Christian. This is your day of resonsibility and opportunity. Redeem the time by working faithfully for the Master. 16LtMs, Ms 80, 1901, par. 11