Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 19 (1904)

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Lt 115, 1904

White, J. E.; White, Emma

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

March 14, 1904

Portions of this letter are published in GH 03/1904.

My dear children Edson and Emma,—

I should very much like to see you, but at present this cannot be. I should like to hear from Emma. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 1

I have just been reading The Watchman. I am much interested in the experiences of those who are working in the Southern field. We hope that all such experiences will be used in the paper. Those in charge of the paper should make the most of them. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 2

Be of good courage, my children. The Lord is a present help in every time of need. I know that in the Southern field there are many perplexities. But you have a Helper who sees and knows all about the working of the enemy. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 3

We must do our work with cheerfulness and hopefulness. We are in no case to become discouraged. Let us keep our eyes off the disagreeable parts of our experience, and let our words be full of good cheer. We can surround ourselves with a sunny atmosphere or with an atmosphere charged with gloom. Let us educate ourselves to talk courage. Let us learn lessons from the example of Christ. Not even His terrible humiliation at the hands of the Jews and the Roman soldiers—His mock trial and the cruel treatment that He received—caused Him to become discouraged. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 4

After His resurrection, Christ met with His disciples in Galilee. At the time appointed, about five hundred disciples were assembled on the mountainside. Suddenly Jesus stood among them. No one could tell whence or how He came. Many who were present had never before seen Him; but in His hands and feet they beheld the marks of the crucifixion; His countenance was as the face of God, and when they saw Him, they worshiped Him. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 5

But some doubted. So it will ever be. There are those who find it hard to exercise faith, and they place themselves on the doubting side. These lose much because of their unbelief. If they would control their feelings, and refuse to allow doubt to bring a shadow over their own minds and the minds of others, how much happier and more helpful they would be. They close the door to many blessings that they might enjoy if they would refuse to place themselves on the doubting side and would, instead, talk hope and courage. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 6

“And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth.” [Matthew 28:18.] The conditions of the atonement had been fulfilled; the work for which Christ came to this world had been accomplished. He was on His way to the throne of God, to be honored by angels, principalities, and powers. Clothed with boundless authority, He gave His commission to the disciples, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Verses 19, 20.] 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 7

Do we believe these words? If we do, let us show our faith in them. Let us never forget the words, “All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth.” [Verse 18.] Shall we act as if we had been left orphans in this world? Shall we not, rather, take God at His word, in every perplexity looking to Him for aid? Shall we not show our faith by our works? We have a right to claim the legacy that Christ has left us. He has promised power to every soul who works in faith and love and truth, believing the promise. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 8

When the time came for Christ to ascend to His Father, He led the disciples out as far as Bethany. Here He paused, and they gathered about Him. With hands outstretched in blessings, and as if in assurance of His protecting care, He slowly ascended from among them. “It came to pass, while He blessed them, He was parted from them, and carried up into heaven.” [Luke 24:51.] 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 9

“And they worshiped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God.” [Verses 52, 53.] 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 10

Read the account of Christ’s ascension as given in the book of Acts. It is full of encouragement for us. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 11

“Being assembled together” with the disciples, Christ “commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith He, ye have heard of Me. For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence. When they therefore were come together, they asked of Him, saying, Lord, wilt Thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? And He said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in His own power. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you, and ye shall be witnesses unto Me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 12

“And when He had spoken these things, while they beheld, He was taken up; and a cloud received Him out of their sight. And, while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go into heaven.” [Acts 1:4-11.] 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 13

“Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a Sabbath day’s journey. And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James. These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brethren.” [Verses 12-14.] 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 14

“And with His brethren.” [Verse 14.] These had lost much because of their unbelief. They had been among the number who doubted when Jesus appeared in Galilee. But they now firmly believed that Jesus was the Son of God, the promised Messiah. Their faith was established. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 15

Notice particularly the sixth and seventh verses. “It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in His own power.” It was not necessary for them to see further into the future than the revelations of Christ enabled them to see. They were to proclaim the gospel message. But neither they nor those to whom they ministered would receive any benefit from dwelling on speculative theories. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 16

“Ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you; and ye shall be witnesses unto Me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost parts of the earth.” [Verse 8.] 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 17

These words, in all their solemn importance, come sounding down along the line to our time. God’s people today are to seek for power from on high, that they may understand the breadth of their mission. May God help us to realize that the burden of our work is to bear witness to the truth. But the teachers of truth can do their work acceptably only as self is crucified and selfishness is purged from their hearts. They are to purify themselves even as Christ is pure. When they understand fully the meaning of the prayer recorded in the seventeenth chapter of John, they will be so closely united with Christ that there will be no place in their minds for the speculative theories that spring out of nothingness and end in nothingness. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 18

Our workers are not to spend their time in teaching what will be in the new earth. Let them devote every capability and power to the question, “What shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?” [Mark 10:17.] Let them discard the cheap, foolish ideas which arise from curiosity, which Satan places in minds to lead to spiritual adultery. 19LtMs, Lt 115, 1904, par. 19