Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 19 (1904)

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Lt 59, 1904

Brethren and Sisters in the South

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

January 22, 1904

Previously unpublished. +Note

Dear Brethren and Sisters in the South,—

I greatly desire that the work in the South shall advance rapidly. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 1

I have been instructed to raise my voice in warning to my ministering brethren everywhere regarding the tendency to disunion, and especially to those who are laboring in the South I would say, Be careful not to let division come in among you. Let all sustain your aged President in his position of trust. The Lord has given him a very valuable experience. His love and care has been over him. He has appointed him his work. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 2

The pioneer workers among us are to be respected and loved. I have been repeatedly instructed that God has a special message and a special work for the aged men who pioneered the cause when there were so many hardships to be borne. A decided change needs to take place in the sentiments of some of our younger ministers who are inclined to disparage the efforts of these pioneer workers. These aged, tried, faithful servants of the cross are to be honored, and their testimony is to be appreciated. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 3

A Warning Against Speculative Theories

I have counsel to give to every church. Be very careful not to entertain speculative ideas or to teach that which does not properly represent the truth for this time. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 4

We are not to speculate regarding what will be in heaven. To pry into these mysteries and present fanciful theories regarding them is to do great harm. The people of God need to be aroused on this point. Suppositions regarding these mysteries are not to be received as truth. No one should dare to pry into subjects that God has not revealed. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 5

I am instructed to bear a message of warning against the theory that in the new earth children will be born. There is a strain of spiritualism coming in among our people, and it will undermine the faith of those who give place to it, leading them to give heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. I have seen the archdeceiver tempting several of our ministers, teachers, and medical workers, presenting to them in the most subtle and charming manner, fanciful theories to wean their affections from those whom they should love and cherish. He shows them charming pictures of women whom they have found congenial, suggesting that in the future life, they will be united to the one who is so congenial. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 6

The enemy of souls has gained much when he can lead the imagination of Jehovah’s watchmen to dwell upon the possibilities of association, in the world to come, with women whom they love, and of them raising up families. We need no such pleasing picture. All such views originate in the mind of the tempter. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 7

We have the plain assurance of Christ that in the world to come, the redeemed “neither marry, nor are given in marriage.” [Matthew 22:30.] To those who hold such views I bear the message: You need to be taught the first principles of the truth. You need to stand where you know that you are not departing from the faith and giving heed to seducing spirits. Break the spell that is upon you, and become teachable. Leave every false issue alone. We cannot do our seed sowing too carefully; for we are sowing for eternity. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 8

We have no need for fanciful theories. What we need to understand is the plain, simple truth that Christ taught—the truth that concerns our eternal welfare. He knew what subjects to speak upon and what subjects to be silent upon. We are not to seek for fanciful theories to present, to satisfy the unsanctified desire for something new. The Word of God contains truth that will make us wise unto salvation. “Sanctify them through Thy truth,” Christ prayed; “Thy word is truth.” [John 17:17.] The Word of God, presented in love, and in love received and obeyed, is able to save the soul of the teacher and the souls of those who are instructed by his ministry. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 9

The sixth chapter of John contains truths that we need to understand. We are to receive and assimilate the words of Christ. “It is the Spirit that quickeneth,” He said; “the flesh profiteth nothing; the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life.” [Verse 63.] 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 10

We are in great danger of becoming careless and walking and working away from Christ and the truth that He presented. I beg my ministering brethren to take heed how they hear. We must have the faith that is acceptable to God. Christ is the source of all power, as well as of the grace so essential to sanctification—the grace that men must have before they can conduct themselves as Christian gentlemen. Those who follow Christ’s example will grow in grace and in a knowledge of the truth. They will understand God’s will because they do His will and obey His Word. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 11

A Weighty Responsibility

A weighty responsibility rests upon those who teach the Word of God. They are set as guides to the people. They should realize the responsibility and the difficulties of their work and should spend much time with God in prayer, that they may speak right words, true words, words that will produce the peaceable fruits of righteousness. Eternal consequences depend upon the use that is made of the talent of speech. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 12

The teacher of truth is to walk humbly with God, guarding strictly against self-sufficiency. He who does this will have the Lord Jesus as his helper and will be blessed in his work. But he who strives to be first will be left to become the least of all in God’s sight. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 13

Knowledge and wisdom, discretion and meekness, and an earnest desire to study the Scriptures, to feast upon the bread of life—these the teacher of truth should possess. He is to treat his fellow men with kindness, courtesy, and respect. The obedience that is the result of love for God and faith in Christ leads men to respect those who are trying to honor God by keeping His commandments. The religion that does not soften and subdue the heart and govern the tongue, making men beneficent, compassionate, and humble cannot save the soul. Genuine Christlike love is the best guide for all who would teach others to obey God. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 14

“Take My yoke upon you,” Christ says, “and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.” [Matthew 11:29, 30.] Will you follow the prescription? If you will, you will find the rest that Christ alone can give. 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 15

May the Lord help us to come into close relationship with Himself. To each one I would say: Look to God for yourself. Be true to God and to yourself, that you may reveal the precious Saviour and thus help your fellow men. Be peaceable and unselfish. None of us need expect acceptance with God unless we walk as Christ walked, doing all in our power to promote peace and harmony. “Blessed are the peacemakers; for they shall be called the children of God.” [Matthew 5:9.] “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see God.” [Hebrews 12:14.] 19LtMs, Lt 59, 1904, par. 16