Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 18 (1903)


Ms 29, 1903

The Southern Work


April 19, 1903

Portions of this manuscript are published in 3MR 264-265.

When Edson’s letters presented the work that he was doing in the Southern field by his boat, used as a meeting house; and when he told of the gathering of the children for Sunday school, and of the invitations he received to hold meetings, and of the souls who were becoming interested in these meetings, and of the naked to be clothed and the sick to be helped, and nothing in the way of means to carry forward the work, the work that should be done was presented to me in the night season. Not only was the field presented to me, in which he was at work, but several places where he would be called in the providence of God to work. The eager faces, the earnest desire, the hunger of soul expressed were before me, and I said, “What can we do for this people that are now so interested, when the situation is so discouraging?” 18LtMs, Ms 29, 1903, par. 1

My Guide said, “This work will be sowing seed for time and for eternity.” And then the instruction was given, “The angels of the Lord will go before him. He will be accounted out of line. But many ought to be out of the lines that have been maintained to be the regular routine, and unless they themselves come into line, they will say, ‘The temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord are we.’ [Jeremiah 7:4.] Unless that temple is purified, cleansed, sanctified, God will not give them His presence in the temple of which they boast. The whole world needs to be worked, but not after the present principles. Fear not. Speak encouragingly. I have put it into the hearts of those who will come to the aid of your son. Behold, the possessions of the world are Mine. There are no territorial lines; there are no boundaries to be made. Present to the churches the true state of the long-neglected field, the long-neglected portion of My vineyard. There are hearts that will be touched and will respond. Call for means to come directly to the workers in the Southern field. I will impress hearts. Say to the workers there and to the leader J. E. White, he will be sorely tried, he will be sorely tried, but he must speak cautiously, and silence is eloquence. When there is not heed given to My words, how will they heed or respect his words? Contempt, envy, jealousy, and a great lack of principle have been the coin that have been laid out with interest; but My words have been neglected and despised.” 18LtMs, Ms 29, 1903, par. 2

I then wrote the first appeal that was published in the Review, and the result is made known. I have inquired again and again what became of that more than eleven thousand dollars raised. I had been directed to make the appeal; I ought to know. But it was out of sight and touch. The very portion of the field where there was a mind to begin to work were the very places that means were to be appropriated. 18LtMs, Ms 29, 1903, par. 3

I was directed to speak in behalf of the places presented before, where nothing had been done or would be done unless the field had begun to be worked as it has been. At later date I was in great perplexity. The situation was again presented, and the urgency of occupying the fields that were presented to me, then being worked under the supervision of God, using Edson White as His agency to open the field. But there were no others that would think of touching that portion of the field or would engage in working it. Those who should have rejoiced to see something done were determined to give no recognition to Edson White or the work, because he did not work in the regular lines. God has presented before you how He regarded the regular lines. The regular lines had need to be broken as a potter’s vessel is broken and reconstructed, and the men in responsible positions converted heart, soul, and body. In short, the words spoken to Nicodemus were spoken to those who were handling sacred things. Nicodemus spoke words of praise and appreciation of Christ, but Christ answered, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” [John 3:3.] “That which is born of flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto you, Ye must be born again.” [Verses 6, 7.] “Nicodemus answered and said unto Him, How can these things be? Jesus answered and said, Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?” [Verses 9, 10.] 18LtMs, Ms 29, 1903, par. 4

These are the words that Christ has spoken positively of those who have been standing in the most responsible positions in the management of the Review and Herald office. The men who have been voice and authority for years have been putting a misshapen mold upon the working of the cause, and the principles have been perverted. The words unto Nicodemus, I declare unto you today, is the Word of God for me to give unto the men in the Review and Herald office, as managers and directors and those who have been misshaping the work in supplying the means that should be carefully and appropriately supplied to opening of new fields. There has been such unbelief, such a fear to advance for the opening of new territory and uplifting the standard in new places. The call for the appropriation of money was to develop and carry on the work where it was so much needed. And when more than eleven thousand dollars was raised by the people all over the land in answer to the appeal that I made for the necessities of that part of the vineyard presented, the men who misappropriated that money for various places, leaving out the very field for which that money was raised, leave the records of unfaithful stewards in the books of heaven. 18LtMs, Ms 29, 1903, par. 5

The Lord was doing a work with those engaged in the very portion of the field in which nothing has been done. Those who thought themselves wise said, “That is Edson White’s work and we do not encourage it.” Some mistakes were made in placing confidence in men who seemed worthy to be trusted, but who were not prepared to do as they would be done by. This is the trial that is to be met in all parts of the field that is to be worked. But the ignoring of a good work and treating with marked indifference for so long a time the work being done by J. E. White, which God approves and which bears His endorsement, was treating the Saviour with contempt. The disposing of means raised upon entirely different objects than that for which the means was raised stands registered in the books of heaven as a fraudulent action, and the principle that prompted such action needs to be wholly eradicated; the men who advised and acted a part in such transaction should not be trusted; they have put out their own spiritual eyesight and have become blind. The Lord would have every part of His work done with exactitude and fidelity. Had there been no other means or ways whereby Edson White could have managed, if it had not been for his book interest and the help I gave him in his necessity, utter discouragement would have come on him and he would have had to leave the field. But the Lord said, “I will go before him,” and as we look upon the field the results may be seen. But others have complained and sent their spirit of misrepresentation to imbue others, and it has grown to large proportions until one of the missionaries chosen of God was treated in a manner that was not after the principle of “do unto others as you would that they shall do unto you.” [Matthew 7:12.] 18LtMs, Ms 29, 1903, par. 6

The matter of the Gospel Primer needs to be healed. Those concerned in this transaction should cleanse away from the soul the impurities of sentiment and principle that should never have existed. The spirit that led to such actions needs to be repented of then forever forsaken before the sin will be blotted out. It is not money value that I refer to in the matter of healing, but it is also the matter of conversion of heart and soul and spirit; it is the principle to deal justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with God. 18LtMs, Ms 29, 1903, par. 7