Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 18

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Lt 162, 1903

Lane, Sands

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

April 12, 1903

Portions of this letter are published in UL 116; 1MCP 320; SpTB #6 60-61.

Elder Sands Lane

My dear brother,—

I have a message for you. Your heart is not right with God. The light given me is that we shall be tested and proved, that Satan will come to us as he came to Christ—as an angel of light. The heavenly universe is looking upon us with intense interest. We have been regarded as a people moving under God’s guidance and enjoying a remarkable record of success and prosperity. But a new chapter has been opened. There are among us those who are binding up with the world. They are not standing out in moral independence, trusting to the Lord to carry His work to completion. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 1

I have been instructed to place before our people the instruction given by the Lord to Israel to keep them separate from the world. My brother, I want you to see the principles upon which we are to work. In the fourth chapter of Deuteronomy we read: 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 2

“Now therefore hearken, O Israel, unto the statutes, and unto the judgments, which I teach you, for to do them, that ye may live, and go in and possess the land, which the Lord God of your fathers giveth you. Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the Lord your God, which I command you. Your eyes have seen what the Lord did because of Baal-peor; for all the men that followed Baal-peor, the Lord thy God hath destroyed from among you. But ye that did cleave unto the Lord your God are alive every one of you this day. Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments, even as the Lord my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the land whither ye go to possess it. Keep therefore, and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding nation. For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the Lord our God is in all things that we call upon Him for? And what nation is there so great, that hath statutes and judgments so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day? Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thine heart all the days of thy life; but teach them thy sons and thy sons’ sons.” [Verses 1-9.] 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 3

The people of God are to stand distinct and separate from the people of the world. Only as they do this can the Lord exalt and magnify them as the people of His choice. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 4

Of them the words are spoken, “Ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvellous light.” [1 Peter 2:9.] 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 5

The Lord was not in the establishment of the Sanitarium in Battle Creek. This is one of the enemy’s devices to introduce into the ranks of God’s people the world’s maxims and the world’s ways and practices. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 6

It is not the Lord’s plan that sanitariums so large as the one in Battle Creek shall be erected. When so large a number of patients are gathered together, it is impossible to give them the religious instruction that God designs the patients in our sanitariums to have. And the erection of so large an institution centers in one place a work that should be distributed to several places. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 7

The nearer we approach the end of this earth’s history, the stronger and more numerous will be Satan’s temptations. He will work “with all deceivableness of unrighteousness,” that, if it were possible, he might deceive the very elect. [2 Thessalonians 2:10; Matthew 24:24.] He will bring in every device to hinder our preparation for that which is to come upon the earth. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 8

In order to fulfil God’s purpose for us, we must be taught by the Holy Spirit. Those who have not been taught by the Spirit, however great may have been their advantages in other respects, cannot discern spiritual things. They are ignorant; whereas, if they were worked by the Spirit, they would be wise, able to understand the things of God. These things can be understood by those only who are partakers of the divine nature, those who eat the flesh and drink the blood of the Son of God, receiving and obeying His Word. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 9

The truths of God’s Word stand out plainly revealed, but many have not a clear conception of them. Why?—Because they love darkness rather than light. They do not even want the Word of God to be presented to them; for they regard their own way and their own judgment as able to guide them safely. They are self-sufficient and self-confident, and they refuse to accept anything that does not harmonize with their opinions. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 10

The Holy Spirit taught the writers of God’s Word what truths to record. It was through the Spirit that these men learned in what words to express the will of God. The Bible is an expression of the mind and will of God and is, therefore, a perfect rule of faith and practice. It is this Word that the people of God are to follow as their guide and counselor. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 11

It is not enough for man to follow the dictates of his conscience. He must know that he has a conscience that is void of offense toward God and man. Constantly he is to press on in the narrow way, cultivating his capabilities and wisely employing his powers. With sanctified intellect and living faith he is to grasp the meaning of the divine will. Thus did Abraham when, at the command of a God whom he scarcely knew, he left his country and his father’s house to go into a land that he knew not. God disposed his heart to obey. It is when God has control of the being that conscience is a safe guide. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 12

All who are connected with the work of God will have many important lessons to learn. Some who have thought themselves sufficient for everything will be found to be a very short pattern in some respects. Some workers who are depreciated by human wisdom are by God highly exalted. God will raise up men to do a certain work, and as they advance step by step, they will learn of the great I AM. As His work unfolds, they still move forward, under His leadership, performing that which He has placed in their hands. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 13

Another man, with supposed superior abilities, may come in and, looking upon the work of these men, may think that they should be replaced by wiser men. To his imagination, their work may look all tangled and spoiled, when the Lord is leading step by step. He would advocate that a change be made. He would try to make the workers see that they are making a great mistake in trying to carry on their work. But God sees not as man sees. The workers whom He is leading may at times be in great perplexity. It is His plan that many difficulties shall be met and mastered. He inspires the workers with the determination to make every apparent failure prove a success. They are determined to walk in the light that is shining on their pathway, and although they encounter many obstacles, yet they declare, “I will not fail nor be discouraged.” [See Isaiah 42:4.] 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 14

Often men pray and weep because of the perplexities and obstacles that confront them. But it is God’s purpose for them to meet perplexities and obstacles, and if they will hold the beginning of their confidence steadfast unto the end, determined to carry forward the work of the Lord, He will make their way clear. Success will come to them as they perseveringly struggle against apparently insurmountable difficulties; and with success will come the greatest joy. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 15

God is preparing humble, contrite men to be valuable workers. He is giving them an experience that human wisdom cannot explain. He works upon minds by His own wisdom. Supposed mistakes are permitted to appear, that in unexpected ways, which human wisdom cannot comprehend, great glory may come to God. He is accomplishing His work in His own way. He consults His own purposes, not man’s theories. The power with which He works through any man is proportionate to the man’s earnestness and sincerity. In all that He does, He seeks the highest good of those who are laborers together with Him. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 16

Day by day men and women are deciding their eternal destiny. I have been shown that many are in great danger. When a man will do or say anything to gain his end, nothing but the power of God can save him. His character needs to be transformed before he can have a good conscience, void of offense toward God and man. Self must die, and Christ must take possession of the soul temple. When, by rejecting the light that God has given, men abuse and trample upon the conscience, they are in fearful danger. Their future eternal welfare is imperilled. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 17

O what sadness fills my heart when I see a man recklessly stating falsehood for truth, while Satan stands by, exulting over the victory that he has gained over the man’s soul. The man knew better, but so long had he yielded to Satan, saying the things that Satan prompted him to say, that he had become confused. How will he conduct himself in the future? Unless he places himself in God’s control, he will be a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 18

He comes to the feast provided by the Lord, but he does not put on the wedding garment. He comes clothed in his common citizen dress, disdaining to wear the garment provided for him at great cost. And when the Lord asks, “How camest thou in hither, not having a wedding garment?” he can answer nothing. [Matthew 22:12.] He is self-condemned. And the Lord says, “Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness.” [Verse 13.] 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 19

During this life he was unwilling to stand forth as one of God’s denominated people, and at the last great day the Lord refuses to acknowledge him. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 20

“And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it; and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honor into it. And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day; for there shall be no night there. And they shall bring the glory and honor of the nations into it. And there shall in no wise enter into it anything that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie; but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.” [Revelation 21:23-27.] 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 21

“And there shall be no more curse; but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and His servants shall serve Him; and they shall see His face; and His name shall be in their foreheads.” [Revelation 22:3, 4.] 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 22

Who are these?—God’s denominated people—those who on this earth have witnessed to their loyalty. Who are they?—Those who here have kept the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ; those who have owned the crucified Saviour as their Saviour. 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 23

“And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light, and they shall reign forever and ever.” [Verse 5.] 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 24

“And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book; for the time is at hand. He that is unjust, let him be unjust still; and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still; and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still; and, behold, I come quickly; and My reward is with Me, to give every man according as his work shall be. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.” [Verses 10-14.] 18LtMs, Lt 162, 1903, par. 25