Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 21 (1906)


Lt 308, 1906

Starr, Brother and Sister [G. B.]

St. Helena, California

October 3, 1906

Portions of this letter are published in Ev 540.

Dear Brother and Sister Starr:

You have an important work to do in the sanitarium. In your work for the patients, do not allow them to receive an impression that you are intensely anxious for them to understand and to accept our faith. It is natural that there should be an intense fervency to this end. But often a wise restraint is necessary. In some case the words that might seem appropriate would do grave injury and close a door that might have opened wider. 21LtMs, Lt 308, 1906, par. 1

Manifest tender love, and exercise judicious forbearance. If you see a good opportunity to make a sharp point in argument, it is better often to forbear. Do not on all occasions present the strongest proofs you know; for this would arouse a suspicion that you were trying merely to convert your hearer to the Seventh-day Adventist faith. 21LtMs, Lt 308, 1906, par. 2

The simple Word of God has great power to convince of the truth. Let the Word speak and do its work. Let there be wise restraint in evangelistic effort. Do not force the presentation of a testing point. Wait till inquiries are made. Let your example teach. Let the words and works show that you believe the words of the living Teacher. 21LtMs, Lt 308, 1906, par. 3

Christ said, “Behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves: be ye wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.” [Matthew 10:16.] What a lesson for us all to learn! God helps those who work according to His instruction. He Himself will make the impressions that will reach the heart. 21LtMs, Lt 308, 1906, par. 4

We see the deceptive working of Satan in various lines. We are forbidden to enter into controversy with opposing parties, except to say, as did Christ, “It is written.” If Christ, when opposed by the devil Himself, would only repeat the words that He Himself had spoken, enshrouded in the pillar of cloud, shall we not do as He has given us an example? 21LtMs, Lt 308, 1906, par. 5

Brother Kress has sent to me copies of letters he has written to Dr. Kellogg, and I have also seen a copy of what you wrote to him. That which you have written is excellent. There are communications being sent out by Elder Tenney, and others who have departed from the pure principles of the gospel, tending to confuse the mind and lead astray. 21LtMs, Lt 308, 1906, par. 6

I wish I could give you a good account of our work in Oakland, beginning with the camp-meeting held the latter part of July. I have written to Dr. Kress concerning this meeting. The Lord blessed me wonderfully and greatly sustained me. I labored as I did thirty or forty years ago. I felt refreshed rather than weary after speaking to the people in the large tent. 21LtMs, Lt 308, 1906, par. 7

Elder Haskell and his wife and Elder Hibbard have been holding meetings in the large tent since the camp-meeting. For a few weeks it stood on the same ground, then it was moved to a different part of the city. I have been down to spend Sabbath and Sunday three or four times since the camp. Once I spoke in the Congregational church, which our brethren and sisters in Oakland are using since they sold their church property. 21LtMs, Lt 308, 1906, par. 8

At the camp-meeting sixty-five were baptized, and a most excellent work is being continued. Elder Haskell and his wife conduct a Bible class in the morning. These classes are quite well attended, and new members are joining constantly. In the afternoon, the workers do house-to-house work. I am so glad that Elder and Mrs. Haskell are carrying forward the work in Oakland. They expect to do an important line of work in Bible study in connection with the college to be opened at Loma Linda. 21LtMs, Lt 308, 1906, par. 9

I did not go down to Oakland last Sabbath, but I am planning to spend next Sabbath and Sunday with them. The new tent is in a good location, but the streetcars run right past, and it makes it very difficult to speak. The attendance has been fairly good and seems to be increasing. 21LtMs, Lt 308, 1906, par. 10