Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 16 (1901)


Ms 116, 1901

Regarding Dr. Sanderson’s Work at the Sanitarium


November 14, 1901

Previously unpublished. +Note

I see a great work to be done. I am weighed down by the responsibility of deciding when to speak and when to keep silent. I fear that in the case of Dr. Sanderson, I waited too long before speaking. Last February, when I told him that he was being led by the mind of his wife, he looked at me in great amazement, and made me no answer. I was impressed by the Spirit of God to say this. I said also, You are being tempted by the enemy, and you have no power from the snare to go. 16LtMs, Ms 116, 1901, par. 1

I believe that at the time of the General Conference Dr. Sanderson should have been transferred from St. Helena to some other place. I had been telling him that he needed to work with other experienced physicians. 16LtMs, Ms 116, 1901, par. 2

He has acted like a man walking in his sleep. Before I went to Los Angeles, I was moved by the Spirit of the Lord to bear him a straightforward testimony regarding his true position and what would be the end if he did not change. I told him that he had before him the example of Dr. Burke and Dr. Maxson. Neither would heed the testimonies of the Spirit of God. They thought they knew better than the Lord. I said, Dr. Sanderson, you are going over the same ground. Unless you see your true position, you will walk in the light of the sparks of your own kindling, and will lie down in sorrow. 16LtMs, Ms 116, 1901, par. 3

I presented before him the great responsibilities to be borne by God’s people at this time. I said, Dr. Sanderson, the Lord expects from us more than we give Him. There is a deadness in the spirituality of the Sanitarium that frightens me. The work at this institution has not the showing that it should have. You have been here ten years. What have you done to proclaim the truths of weighty, yes, of eternal importance? For what was this Sanitarium established? Was it not to be the means of educating people in regard to the need of health reform? But in this institution the work of health reform is on the downgrade, instead of moving onward and upward. 16LtMs, Ms 116, 1901, par. 4

I cannot hold my peace. I must tell you, Dr. Sanderson, that you need to be much farther advanced than you are now in the knowledge of God’s Word before you can give the nurses a proper training. They have been receiving a very imperfect education. In the institution there is levity and trifling. There are loud voices and silly laughter, and the patients have made complaints. Who is responsible for this? 16LtMs, Ms 116, 1901, par. 5

Christ has told us how it will be at the close of this earth’s history. “As the days of Noah were,” He says, “so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.” [Matthew 24:37-39.] 16LtMs, Ms 116, 1901, par. 6

Here we see what the condition of the great majority of men and women will be when the Son of man comes the second time, not as a Sin-bearer, but as a Sin-punisher. The age is ripe for destruction. The violence of the land is as it was in the days of Noah. And what are our sanitariums for if it is not to bear aloft the gospel standard and give the warning to the world? We have no right to cloak the truth, leaving the people in ignorance and deception. The nurses and helpers in our sanitariums should be carefully trained and educated, that they may do justice to the great work before them. Lift up the standard higher and still higher, that the world may see that we are a people who will not condescend to foolishness or frivolity in any shape. 16LtMs, Ms 116, 1901, par. 7

About this time Dr. Sanderson’s wife announced her intention of helping him in his work in the Sanitarium, declaring that she could help him better than any one else. I inquired what part of the work was assigned her, and was told that one part of her work was to use her strong mind in helping the doctor to influence the minds of his patients. I do not think that Dr. Sanderson will ever again act a part in the Sanitarium. 16LtMs, Ms 116, 1901, par. 8

I will now leave this subject and relate an experience given me last night. We were assembled in a solemn convocation. There were a large number present, and I had a special message to bear. I fear that I cannot reproduce the words I was moved by the Spirit of the Lord to speak. 16LtMs, Ms 116, 1901, par. 9

What are we doing to enlighten the world? The authority of God is scarcely recognized by the beings of His creation. The mystery of iniquity is working with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish. John writes, “The whole world lieth in the evil one.” [1 John 5:19.] And Paul declares, “The Spirit saith expressly that in the later times some shall fall away from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils, through the hypocrisy of men that speak lies, branded in their own conscience as with a hot iron.” [1 Timothy 4:1, 2.] “Know this, that in the last days grievous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, haughty, railers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, implacable, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, not lovers of good, traitors, headstrong, puffed up, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of good; holding a form of godliness, but having denied the power thereof; from these turn away.” [2 Timothy 3:1-5.] 16LtMs, Ms 116, 1901, par. 10