Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 20 (1905)


Lt 15, 1905

Leaders in our Work at Takoma Park

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

January 11, 1905

This letter is published in entirety in RH 04/13/1905, 04/27/1905.

To the leaders in our work at Takoma Park,—

I exhort all who are connected with our work at Takoma Park to bring Christ into all that they do and say. Lift Him up, higher and still higher, that by beholding Him, you may be changed into the same image. To you, and to all others who believe in Him, He becomes an inspiring force. To all who receive Him, He gives power to become the sons of God. Only by obtaining this power can we gain perfection of character. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 1

We can be partakers of the divine nature. In the strength of the Redeemer, we can live pure, noble, helpful lives. Make yourselves acquainted with every detail of the life of Christ. Strive to become like the Saviour, who was meek and lowly and self-denying. He was inspired with the purest purposes. So must you be if you see the King in His beauty. Pure, unselfish love was the principle that governed all that He said and did. He has power to imbue us with the faith that works by love and purifies the soul. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 2

I thank the Lord that we have men in charge of our work at Takoma Park who have taken a firm stand that they will not be corrupt in any of their transactions with worldly men. Thus businessmen will be convinced that the faith of Seventh-day Adventists is not a pretense or a sham, but that it leads men to walk in the way of the Lord and to do His will. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 3

I have been instructed that strong temptations will come to those who are connected with our institutions. The work we are called upon to do in Washington is to keep every jot and tittle of the law in surety and in strength, in might and in power. When worldly men present temptations to you, listen not to their offers and accept not their bribes. I thank the Lord that you have not betrayed the sacred trusts committed to your hands. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 4

Our physicians also will have opportunities to gain advantages for themselves by following worldly policy. Let them distinctly tell those who offer these temptations that they will not enter into any worldly schemes. I rejoice to think that those who have charge of the work in Takoma Park are Christians, men who can teach the youth in their charge to do acceptable work! My brethren, let unselfishness and scrupulous integrity characterize all that you do. Do not allow your actions to be tainted by dishonesty. Work for time and for eternity, remembering that the Lord sees and hears all that is said and done. His all-seeing eye examines every work. Never resort to the slightest dishonesty to gain an advantage. Do not buy or sell dishonestly. In all that you do, inquire, “Is this the way of the Lord?” Cherish a clear sense of what you must be and do in order to develop a character that is without spot or wrinkle or any such thing. It is the perfect man in Christ who meets God’s ideal. The work of those who are guided and controlled by Christian motives will bear witness for God. Christ lived the life that He desires His followers to live. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 5

The Saviour has a deep contempt for all deception. The stern punishment meted out to Ananias and Sapphira shows this. Desiring to receive commendation for good deeds, yet unwilling to give all to God, they sold their possessions, and keeping back part of the price, laid the rest at the apostles’ feet. They hoped to be thought liberal and self-denying, but the Holy Spirit read the deception, and sudden punishment came upon them. Today the same Spirit condemns all underhand dealing. All selfish meanness is to be put away from the character. This is the lesson that God would have us learn from the experience of Ananias and Sapphira. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 6

There are virtues that are daily to be strengthened. A reverence for justice and equity is to be cultivated. He who permits in himself that which he condemns in others is doing himself a great wrong. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 7

“Love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous.” [1 Peter 3:8.] Cherish a supreme reverence for justice and truth and a hatred for all cruelty and oppression. Do unto others as you would wish them to do unto you. God forbids you to favor self to the disadvantage of another. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 8

A terrible deception has taken possession of the Christian world. There is a high profession, but a dwarfed godliness. Let us so live that at last God can say to us, “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.] Our lives may show a steady spiritual growth. But I have seen that which makes me tremble—men and women dwarfed in character, possessing the Word of God which tells them what they must do in order to be saved, yet unsanctified and unholy. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 9

“Enter ye in at the strait gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat; because strait is the gate and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” [Matthew 7:13, 14.] 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 10

This is a time for every one to deal truly with his own soul. “Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven: but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven.” [Verse 21.] 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 11

Daily, hourly, the leaders in the work are giving lessons to those with whom they are associated. My brethren, be reasonable in your every requirement, as men of intelligence whom God has chosen. Let all you do reveal the strictest integrity. Be true and faithful. Set an example that all may safely follow. Do not draw into the web of your character one thread of selfishness; for this would spoil the pattern. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 12

As you advance in the work, you will find that there are many things that must receive careful consideration. Allow no shiftlessness. When a man is employed in the work of God, he is under obligation to use all his capabilities in the very best service that he can offer. He is to remember that God has hired him to work in His vineyard. Every woman is to stand in her place, helping to perfect her own character and the characters of the members of her family. Father, mother, and children are to do honor to the principles of heaven, that the influence of angels may unite with their efforts in the preparation of character for the higher life. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 13

To the Faithful Helpers

To the stewards and matrons, accountants and clerks, foremen and laborers, I would say: Let your stewardship and all your business dealing be marked by strict integrity and the sanctifying influence of the truth, that others may take knowledge of you that you have been with Jesus and have learned of Him. Be faithful in all that you do. Let not one selfish, covetous act be recorded in the books of heaven against your name. Do not allow it to be seen that while you profess to be children of God, you are really serving the world. Serve God with heart and mind and soul and strength. The angels of heaven will come close to you and will lift up for you a standard against the enemy. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 14

Give your whole heart and life to the service of Him who gave Himself for your redemption. Disappoint the enemy. Refuse to be his tool for the carrying out of his plans. Turn away from the financial advantages which he offers you and which, if accepted, would prove to be a curse to your religious experience. Then you can say in the cleanness of your heart, “My soul shall make her boast in the Lord.” [Psalm 34:2.] Let there be in your lives no deceitful devising, no artifice, no underhand schemes and contrivings. Depart from all that you would condemn in others. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 15

Living Bible truth day by day will place you on vantage ground. Your face will be calm and peaceful, and your words will be, “I will greatly rejoice in the Lord; my soul shall be joyful in the Lord; for He hath clothed me with the garments of His righteousness, and it is my salvation. He hath covered me with the robe of His righteousness.” You will be able to give comfort and hope to others, because you have through your integrity glorified God. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 16

You will walk carefully, lest you make crooked paths by which weak, struggling, halting souls shall be led out of the way. You will refuse to co-operate with worldly men to carry out worldly principles. As you realize that you have a work to do for God, the temptations and allurements of the world will not tempt you from the path of equity and uprightness. The whole life will bear the testimony, “Whom have I in heaven but Thee, and there is none upon earth that I desire beside Thee. My flesh and my heart faileth, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” “O my soul, thou hast said unto the Lord, Thou art God. ... The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup.” [Psalm 73:25, 26; 16:2, 5.] With the eye of faith you will behold the invisible, and the soul will find its strength in the One who never fails. He is the joy of your life. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 17

We are fighting a battle with the powers of darkness. The Bible is the rule of our life. This Word is the light which is to guide us in all our perplexities. Make the Lord your counsellor. When you are at work, the enemy may come to you with suggestions and temptations, hoping to lead you from the path of integrity. Do not listen to him. Look away from him to the One who has bought you with His life. Give yourself to Christ, trust in Him, and He will give you strength to resist the enemy. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 18

“If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” [Matthew 16:24.] “Let no man seek his own, but every man another’s wealth.” “Ye are bought with a price, therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are His.” [1 Corinthians 10:24; 6:20.] 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 19

“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.] Never forget that you belong to Christ. Let your work, to the most minute detail, be such that He can approve. Do not, in order to gain worldly advantages, steal that which belongs to God. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 20

Only by doing the will of God can we show that we possess true religion. Those who strive sincerely to break from the grasp of the enemy, and with full purpose of heart seek to know and obey the commandments of God, will be given power to become the sons of God. Their search after the things of heaven will be rewarded. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 21

To the Students in the Training College

To the students in the school I would say: Keep in the path of self-denial. Avoid all ungodly companionship. Seek daily for the faith that works by love and purifies the soul. You will find your safety in studying the Word of God with a sincerity that keeps Christ constantly before the mind as the example to be followed. Lift Him up, the man of Calvary, by purity of word and work; for thus you honor God. By true religion, revealed in the daily life, you and I and all who are striving for the crown of life are to bear witness for Christ. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 22

He who is sanctified by the truth is strengthened to resist the assaults of those who have grown hardened in guilt. Shun the companionship of those who have not heeded the appeals of conscience. Let your light shine forth in Christlike words and deeds. Ask yourselves, What can I do to help those with whom I am brought in contact to resist temptation! What can I say to warn those who have not been taught to believe that the Lord is soon to come? 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 23

Earnest searching of the Scriptures, with a sincere desire to understand the truth, will receive a sure reward. An occasional glance into the Word is not enough. An occasional prayer is not enough. “Search the Scriptures,” Christ said; “for in them ye think ye have eternal life, and they are they which testify of Me.” [John 5:39.] Make the Bible the man of your counsel. Only thus can you gain strength to overcome. Let your light shine forth in clear, constant, distinct rays. An occasional service done for the Master is not enough. Only by an unreserved consecration to Christ of all that you have and are can you win souls to Him. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 24

Let the students who are engaged in building do their work with thoroughness. Let them learn from their daily work lessons that will help them in their character building. Let them remember that in order to have perfect characters they must make their work as perfect as possible. Into every line of this work let there be brought that stability which means true economy. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 25

Students, eternal interests are before you. Work with heaven in view, remembering ever your character building. Keep a pocket Bible with you as you work, and improve every opportunity to commit to memory its precious promises. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 26

“All things are yours, ... and ye are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s.” [1 Corinthians 3:21-23.] God gave Christ to be the head over all things to the church. The Saviour loves the church with an everlasting love. “As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.” [John 1:12.] Christ gave Himself for the church “that He might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that it should be holy and without blemish.” [Ephesians 5:27.] 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 27

Remember that Satan will not leave any one alone who is working to build up memorials for the Lord. “Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation.” [Matthew 26:41.] 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 28

From the Washington training college, missionaries are to be sent forth to distant lands. Let the students improve every opportunity to prepare for missionary work while at the school. They are to be tested and proved, that it may be seen what their adaptability is and whether they have a right hold from above. If they have a firm hold on Christ, they will have a right hold on all with whom they come in contact. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 29

The Lord will surely bless all who seek to bless others. The school is to be so conducted that students and teachers will be continually increasing in power through the faithful use of the talents given them. By faithfully putting to a practical use that which they have learned, they will continually increase in wisdom and knowledge. We are to learn from the Book of books the principles by which we are to live and labor. By consecrating all our abilities to Him who has the first right to them, we may ennoble all that is worthy of our attention. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 30

The students who will get the most good out of life are those who live the Word of God in their dealings with their fellow-men. Those who receive to give will feel the greatest satisfaction in this life. Those who live for themselves are always in want; for they are never satisfied. There is no Christianity in shutting up our sympathies in our own selfish hearts. We are to bring brightness and blessing into the lives of others. We are to be channels through which God can let His goodness, mercy, and truth flow to the world. We are to be co-workers with Jesus Christ, imparting to others the blessings bestowed on us. 20LtMs, Lt 15, 1905, par. 31