Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 17

145/469

Lt 141, 1902

Haskell, Brother and Sister

Oakland, California

September 10, 1902

Portions of this letter are published in TDG 262; OHC 170; 4BC 1174; 6BC 1106; 3MR 359-360; 7MR 343; 8MR 345; BTS 11/1902, 12/1902, 02/1903. +Note

Dear Brother and Sister Haskell,—

You must not think that I have forgotten you because I have not written to you. The reason for my not writing is that we have been finishing two books Christian Education and Testimony 35. Marian has had the one on Education in her charge, and Willie has had the Testimony. In a few days both books will be finished. Reading the matter prepared for these books has kept me very busy. I am thankful that now my part is done, with the exception of a few pages yet to be read. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 1

Early this morning, W. C. White, Clarence, Sara, Maggie, and I left St. Helena for Los Angeles. We are now in Oakland, or rather, I am. W. C. W. and Clarence are in San Francisco, and so are Maggie and Sara. This evening at seven o’clock we take the cars, ride all night, stop off at Santa Barbara from eight o’clock Thursday morning till three thirty in the afternoon and then go on to Los Angeles. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 2

I should be much pleased to labor for a short time in New York City. But while my life is spared, I must work diligently to place before the people the light that God has given me. I can work. My mind is clear, and my memory excellent. I am so grateful for this. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 3

I am indeed very much pleased to know that you and Elder Franke can work together. Because men are not of the same stamp of character, this is no reason why they should draw apart. If we are children of the heavenly King, we shall not be at such variance that we shall stand in one another’s way. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 4

It is by the Lord’s order that His servants have varied gifts. It is by His appointment that men of varied minds are brought into the church, to be laborers together with Him. We have many different minds to meet, and different gifts are needed. God’s servants are to work in perfect harmony. I thank the Lord that we are not all exactly the same, while we are all to have the same spirit—the spirit that dwelt in Christ. The apostle John was not the same as the apostle Peter. Each was to subdue his peculiarities and soften his temperament that they might help each other through belief in and sanctification of the truth. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 5

It is the righteousness of Christ that goes before us. It is His character that we are to copy. And then what? The glory of the Lord shall be our rearward. Out Leader goes before us, and as we follow Him, He imparts to us His righteousness, which is revealed in our lives by a well-ordered life and a godly conversation. It is faith and works that make us Christians, preparing us to sit together in heavenly places with Christ. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 6

Is Christ divided? No. Christ abiding in the soul will not quarrel with Christ in another soul. We must learn to bear with the peculiarities of those around us. If our will is under the control of Christ’s will, how can we be at variance with our brethren? If we are at variance, we may know that it is because self needs to be crucified. He whom Christ makes free is free indeed. We are not complete in Christ unless we love one another as Christ has loved us. When we do this, as Christ has given us commandment, we shall give evidence that we are complete in Him. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 7

We must have the faith which prophets foretold and apostles preached—the faith that works by love and purifies the soul. If we reach the standard of perfection, our peculiar traits of disposition must be molded in harmony with Christ’s will. Then we shall sit together in heavenly places in Christ. Brethren will work together, without a thought of collision. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 8

Little differences, dwelt upon, lead to actions that destroy Christian fellowship. But this is not profitable. Let us keep drawing near to God, and He will draw near to us. Then, as one, we shall reach upward to Him. The churches will be as gardens of the Lord, under His cultivation. God’s people will be trees of righteousness, planted by the Lord, and watered with the river of life. And how fruitful they may be! Did not Christ say, “It is my Father’s good pleasure that ye bear much fruit”? [See John 15:8.] 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 9

Shall the vines of Sodom and Gomorrah be permitted to grow in the garden of the Lord? Will the terrible judgments of God be visited upon those who know the truth, because they have not formed characters after the divine example? Will God be obliged to say of His people today, as He said of Israel, “I had planted thee a noble vine, wholly a right seed: how then art thou turned into a degenerate plant of a strange vine?” [Jeremiah 2:21.] Let us subdue self. Let us overcome every evil trait of character. Then the grapes of the Lord will once more grow on the once-flourishing vine, which will no longer bear the grapes of Sodom and the clusters of Gomorrah. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 10

Hear the words of Christ, “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one for another.” [John 13:34, 35.] 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 11

The powers of Satan are mustering for battle. Stern conflicts are before us. Press together, my brethren and sisters, press together. Bind up with Christ. “Say ye not a confederacy; neither fear ye their fear, nor be afraid. Sanctify the Lord of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread. And he shall be for a sanctuary to his people; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a snare and for a gin to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. And many among them shall stumble and fall, and be broken and snared, and taken.” [Isaiah 8:12-15.] 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 12

I am instructed to say to those who know the truth, “Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples. And I will wait upon the Lord, that hideth his face from the house of Jacob, and I will look for him. Behold, I and the children whom thou hast given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the Lord of hosts, which dwelleth in Mount Zion. And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter; should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead? To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” [Verses 16-20.] 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 13

“And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth, and of the whole world to gather them to the battle of the great day of God Almighty. Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked”—without the robe of Christ’s righteousness—“and they see his shame.” [Revelation 16:13-15.] 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 14

“Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government, and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.” [Isaiah 9:6, 7.] 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 15

These subjects are of the utmost importance. Urge our people to consider them carefully. When they do this, their minds will be so fully occupied with matters of eternal consequence that they will lose sight of the little differences that once annoyed them. They will realize that prophecy is even now fulfilling. If the minds of the people of God were not occupied with things of minor consequence, they would see that the signs of the times are fast fulfilling, and that events of the greatest consequence to them are taking place in the world and in the churches pointed out by the words, “Babylon is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and the cage of every unclean and hateful bird.” [Revelation 18:2.] 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 16

Let us cease the conversation that is so unprofitable and spend our time learning lessons from the Word of God. Christ has told us that we are to be united in love. This is the lesson we are to learn. We are to close the door to all disparaging of one another and exalting of self. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 17

He who gave being to the world has not lost His power or sovereignty. He still presides over the world. It is His prerogative to speak out His purpose. By His Son, the Mediator between God and man, these purposes are executed, and the Holy Spirit gives them effect. The awful confusion in the world has been brought about because the way of the Lord has not been followed, because man has set up his human judgment against the law of Him who created the world. Men have undertaken to please and glorify themselves, to set themselves above truth and above God. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 18

Daniel writes, “I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto the heaven, and sware by him that liveth forever, that it shall be for a time, times, and an half, and when he shall have accomplished, to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished. And I heard, but I understood not; then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things? And he said, Go thy way, Daniel; for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.” [Daniel 12:7-10.] 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 19

The world is a theatre. The actors, the inhabitants of the world, are preparing to act their part in the last great drama. God is lost sight of. There is no unity of purpose, except as parties of men confederate to gain their ends. God is looking on. His purposes in regard to His rebellious subjects will be fulfilled. The world has not been given into the hands of men, though God is permitting the elements of confusion and disorder to bear sway for a season. A power from beneath is working to bring about the last great scenes in the drama—Satan coming as Christ, and working with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in those who are binding themselves together in secret societies. Those who are yielding to the passion for confederation are working out the plans of the enemy. The cause will be followed by the effect. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 20

Transgression has almost reached its limit. Confusion fills the world, and a great terror is soon to come upon human beings. The end is very near. We who know the truth should be preparing for what is soon to break upon the world as an overwhelming surprise. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 21

God permits men to work out the purposes He would have saved them from had they kept His commandments. When in the face of light and evidence, they refuse to obey, they must reap the harvest of the seed they have sown. “Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.” [Verse 10.] The wicked have chosen Satan as their leader. Under his control, the wonderful faculties of the mind are used to construct agencies of destruction. God has given the human mind great power, power to show that the Creator has endowed man with ability to do a great work against the enemy of all righteousness, power to show what victories may be gained in the conflict against evil. To those who fulfil God’s purpose for them will be spoken the words, “Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.” [Matthew 25:23.] The human machinery has been used to do a work that is a blessing to humanity; and God is glorified. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 22

But when those to whom God has entrusted capabilities give themselves into the hands of the enemy, they become a power to destroy. When men do not make God first and last and best in everything, when they do not give themselves to Him for the carrying out of His purposes, Satan comes in and uses in his service the minds that, given to God, could achieve great good. Under his direction, they do an evil work with great and masterly power. God designed them to work on a high plane of action, to enter into His mind, and thus to acquire an education that would enable them to work the works of righteousness. But they know nothing of this education. They are helpless. Their powers do not guide them aright; for they are under the enemy’s control. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 23

The way to holiness and heaven is found in the path of obedience. “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16.] 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 24

*****

September 14, 1902

Los Angeles

We arrived here Thursday evening at eight o’clock. We found that one of our brethren has vacated his house and gone to live on the camp-ground, so as to provide rooms for me and my workers. We are pleasantly situated, in a cottage of four rooms, but are quite a distance from the camp-ground. The streetcar runs within two blocks of the house, and the brethren have provided me with a horse and carriage to take me to and from the meetings. The others go on the car, or walk. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 25

Yesterday, (Sabbath), Brother A. T. Jones spoke in the forenoon to a large congregation, and in the afternoon, at two thirty, I spoke to a crowded tent. The people seemed to manifest great interest. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 26

We shall probably remain here over next Sabbath and Sunday, and then they want me to visit San Diego, where Dr. Whitelock is carrying on sanitarium work. If my health will permit, I will try to call at San Diego and then visit the camp-meeting at Fresno. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 27

At present I am feeling reasonably strong. I hope that you and Sister Haskell are well. 17LtMs, Lt 141, 1902, par. 28