Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 16 (1901)


Lt 184, 1901

Magan, P. T.

South Lancaster, Massachusetts

December 7, 1901

This letter is published in entirety in 20MR 310-314.

c/o Dr. F. B. Moran
315 W. 3rd St.
Los Angeles, California

Dear Brother Magan,—

Your letter from Chicago received yesterday. I am very sorry that circumstances have taken the shape that they have, but why are you so faithless? Thank the Lord that you have few students, because you are not prepared for a large number. Brother Sutherland and yourself have done bravely and well, and why will you worry yourself out of the arms of your precious Saviour? Has the bank of heaven failed? Have you overdrawn the resources? Is Christ, the Light of the world, in Joseph’s new tomb? Do we not read, “Wherefore He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come to God by Him, seeing that He ever liveth to make intercession for them.” [Hebrews 7:25.] Now look away from every discouraging presentation, because we have a living Christ to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 1

The bank of heaven has not failed, you have not overdrawn: “For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; who needeth not daily as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself. For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated for evermore.” Hebrews 7:26-28. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 2

“For by one offering He hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that He had said before, This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws in their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.” Hebrews 10:14-17. Chap. 6:17-20. Let your faith be strong in God. Look not upon appearances at this time. Chap. 2:16-18. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 3

Brethren Sutherland and Magan, God is testing your faith, but let not your faith fail. Cling to the promises, with full faith in the One back of the promise. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 4

I have been having a severe test of my faith. Overdoing is not profitable. I have been shorn of my strength, quite feeble, nearly voiceless, too weak to see or converse with any one except it was positively essential. I have not dared to go from the rooms assigned me in the Sanitarium, dared not go home to California, which I so much desired to do in my weakness. Many prayers have been offered to God in my behalf. I have had every attention given me in solid treatment. Yesterday was the first day of recovery, and though sorely perplexed as to what I should do in regard to traveling, I have not become discouraged. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 5

It has been bitterly cold, snow came two feet upon the level, everything frozen up in wash-pitchers and bowl, teeth frozen in a solid mass of ice, and ink frozen: yesterday the weather moderated, and the sleighs are flying briskly. I looked upon the world around me clothed in its pure vestment of white. Whiter than the snow, God has promised to make all who shall come to Him with broken hearts and contrite spirits. A beautiful symbol is before me of those who are mentioned in Revelation, “Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy. He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed with white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.” [Revelation 3:4, 5.] Praise the Lord, with my whole heart will I give thanks unto His holy name. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 6

My brethren, have faith in a living, all-pitiful, and loving Saviour. I have words given me for you and Brother Sutherland, “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee, yea, I will [help] thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. Behold, all they that were incensed against thee shall be ashamed and confounded: they shall be as nothing; and they that strive with thee shall perish. Thou shalt seek them, and shalt not find them, even them that contended with thee: they that war against thee shall be as nothing, and as a thing of nought. For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee. Fear not, thou worm Jacob, and ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the Lord, and thy redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.” [Isaiah 41:10-14.] 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 7

Your business now is simply to trust in the Lord. In your intense earnestness your efforts to make a success in a good work have been too much for your human frame, but you put your trust in the Lord, my brother, fear not. You are doing the best thing possible for yourself and family in going to Los Angeles. We intend to follow your example. This was decided upon long ago, to spend some time of the winter months in Los Angeles. We will meet you there if I can be spared from home. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 8

I had decided to take the advice of physicians and ministers, and brethren generally, to make this journey at once and not call at any place, not even at Nashville; but a telegram came last evening from Edson saying my home was prepared for me, everything comfortable, a wood fire, and everything that I could ask, so I dare not refuse. I shall come either the last of this week or the first of next through Battle Creek. May tarry there a day, and expect to spend Sabbath in Nashville if the Lord will. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 9

W. C. White is in Philadelphia attending meetings. He will today, we think, be in New York City. We will meet him there and then start on our homeward route, not full of sadness, but of joy. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 10

Christ has come very near to me in my great weakness and failing voice. I am now changed for the better, healthwise, but in my greatest feebleness I have been uplifted and comforted. Once I thought I must almost be in heaven, I seemed to be encircled in the arms of Jesus Christ, as if He were carrying me and all my burdens. My peace has often been as a river, and the righteousness thereof as the waves of the sea. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 11

I do not know whether I shall attend the conference held in the South: if it is held in Nashville, I may, if it appears consistent, be able to help them a little in the meetings. If the meeting is at Graysville, No, must be my answer. I may not be able to bear any meeting, for anything connected with the work of God to be done for this time sets me to thinking, and my heart burns within me to see the work advance on right lines—lifting up my voice like a trumpet and appealing to the people. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 12

I have been able to write much upon pressing matters, even during my feebleness, my pen is at work. All the physicians, ministers, and friends have begged me to make no tarrying in this cold climate. I have not seen snow for eleven years. The keen, cutting cold is too much for me to endure. I have been doing nothing since one week ago yesterday. I am at the Sanitarium: everyone is so kind, and doing everything possible in the line of treatment and proper food, denying visitors, for I could not talk. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 13

It is a pleasant thought that we will meet in Los Angeles; this will be my halting, resting spot before returning home. I think that you, as well as I, should have complete rest. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 14

Now in regard to the school, you seem to think that the plant is to put forth full-bloom lilies, roses, and pinks before the root is fully set deep to do this grand work. You must begin small and not think that you can show all strength in establishing a school after an advanced order, taking in higher studies. And do not worry about leading teachers or under-teachers before you have sufficient students to warrant the steps you take. Let not human pride hurt your record. Do not you suppose the Lord sees, and is acquainted with the favorable and unfavorable presentations? Has not the Lord an oversight over His own work? You may suppose, my brethren, that you have to do all the devising, all the strengthening, and all the organizing, and I ask you, Is it not best to show that you have confidence in God? Is it not best to consider that our God is manager—that He is director? You must not be anxious to develop too fast. The hand of providence is holding the machinery. When that hand starts the wheel then all things will begin to move. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 15

How can finite man carry the burdens of responsibility for this time? His people have been far behind. Human agencies under the divine planning may recover something of what is lost because the people who had great light did not have corresponding piety, sanctification, and zeal in working out God’s specified plans. They have lost to their own disadvantage what they might have gained to the advancement of the truth if they had carried out the plans and will of God. Man cannot possibly stretch over that gulf that has been made by workers who have not been following the divine Leader. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 16

We may have to remain here in this world because of insubordination many more years as did the children of Israel; but for Christ’s sake, His people should not add sin to sin by charging God with the consequence of their own wrong course of action. Now, have men who claim to believe the Word of God learned their lesson that obedience is better than sacrifice? “He hath shewed thee (this rebellious people), O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God.” [Micah 6:8.] 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 17

Now the Lord will not be pleased with those men, whom He hath appointed to do a certain work, [if they] take on many lines of work and carry them until they become so wearisome that it breaks their strength. You, nor any other agency, cannot heal the hurt that has come to God’s people by neglect to lift up His standard and occupy new territory. The churches should now be acting in their strength, with capabilities, talents, and means, carrying the work, reaching higher and broader in capacity to stand before the world in the power of invincible truth. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 18

But if all now would only see and confess and repent of their own course of action in departing from the truth of God, and following human devising, then the Lord would pardon. Warnings have been coming, but they have been unheeded; but a few who may now seek to bridge the gulf that stands so offensively before God must make haste slowly, else the standard-bearers will fail, and who will take their place? 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 19

Now, my brother, I am deeply sorry for you and your family. I reproach thee not for thy zeal, for if others had shared thy burdens as they should have done, the work would have been far advanced; but now, just now, you must come apart and rest awhile. Be not concerned in regard to your wages, God will not leave you without some help and comfort for yourself, your wife, and little ones. Be of good courage in the Lord. Trust Him fully. Let the Lord carry the burden of the school. You are not to become loaded down with burdens that will accomplish only the work that finite man can do. When you put your trust wholly in God, then you will see in every passage of your experience One going before you preparing the way. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 20

I cannot tell you what you should do, but I can tell you what not to do: do not worry, be not unbelieving, and do not think that you can blossom into a perfect school in its very planting on new soil. You must remember that it takes time to plant, and to perfect that plant. You just hold fast every inch you have. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 21

Broad daylight now—I have been writing since half past three. Much love to your family. Be of good courage. 16LtMs, Lt 184, 1901, par. 22