Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 21 (1906)


Lt 356, 1906

Olsen, O. A.

St. Helena, California

November 14, 1906

Portions of this letter are published in Ev 211. +Note

Elder O. A. Olsen

My dear Brother:

For the past few months we have had remarkably good weather. September, October, and the first half of November were clear and mild, with but few rainy days. This fine weather has been very favorable for the tent meetings that our workers have been carrying on in Oakland. Elder Simpson’s meetings are well attended. Every evening he has an audience of about five hundred. He bears a solemn message, and his hearers listen with great interest as he gives forcible presentations of the stirring subjects of prophecy. Every statement that he makes, he proves by the infallible Word. So far as possible, he speaks in the very words of the Scriptures themselves. Then if his hearers disagree with his conclusions, their controversy is with the Bible, not with him. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 1

Elder Simpson has spoken plainly regarding the work of the Papacy. To represent the four beasts of Daniel VII, he has had lifelike images made of papier-mâché. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 2

A few days ago, Brother Simpson told his congregation plainly that he is a Seventh-day Adventist and brought forth strong Scripture evidence to prove the obligation resting on men and women to keep holy the seventh day. He presented the Scripture evidence of the institution of the Sabbath at creation. Jesus Christ, the equal of the Father, wrought with Him in the work of creation. In six days the world was made, and then the seventh day was sanctified and set apart by God as the day of rest. This day is ever to stand as a memorial of the Creator of heaven and earth. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 3

Then Brother Simpson read to his hearers of “the man of sin,” who has arisen and has exalted a spurious rest day. [2 Thessalonians 2:3.] In doing this, he has exalted himself above God, the Creator. The facts regarding this work were clearly presented by Brother Simpson, and the observance of Sunday was shown to be the mark of the beast. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 4

Last Sabbath, in response to a call for those to rise who were convinced that the seventh day was set apart by God as a Sabbath of rest, and who would now endeavor to observe the day that Jehovah has blessed, about fifty rose to their feet. We thank the Lord for these results. The meetings are still in progress, and undoubtedly others will take their stand for the truth. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 5

Several times recently I have gone to Oakland to spend the Sabbath, but have not been able to attend Brother Simpson’s meetings, as they are held in the evening. Each Sabbath that I have been in Oakland, I have spoken in the Congregational church, which is used by our people for Sabbath services. The Lord has given me a decided testimony to bear to the churches in Oakland and San Francisco. Each one is to give diligent heed to his own soul’s salvation. Instead of investigating and sitting in judgment on the experience of others, each one should closely examine his own individual experience. To those who are looking for spot and stain in the experience of others, I am bidden to say, “He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone.” [John 8:7.] 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 6

Our duty is to heed well the words of Christ, “If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” [Matthew 16:24.] “So shall he be My disciple.” [See John 15:8.] I am charged with a solemn message to the churches in Oakland and San Francisco. I am instructed to tell them that they must present themselves before God, not boastingly, but with confession of sin and humiliation of heart. Many who have desires that lead them into wrong paths exalt their own supposed righteousness, while at the same time they seek to disparage some of their brethren and sisters. The work of unkind criticism is an effort of the enemy to thwart the efforts of the servants of God. The Lord will certainly judge for the sowing of seeds of suspicion and evil surmising. Such seeds will bring forth a harvest of wickedness. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 7

We are living in the time of the judgment. Every case is passing in review before God, and it is time for all to repent and be converted, that their sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord and the Father shall send Jesus. Read the fiftieth and fifty-first Psalms. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 8

A true record of character is now being taken in the heavenly courts. Let us seek to correct our own defects of character. Some need to repent of the hatred they have cherished against their brethren and the efforts they have put forth to injure their reputation. They have seemed to find delight in magnifying the supposed wrongs of others. Let these persons seek the Lord humbly, confess their own sins, and then remove the obstacles they themselves have placed in the way of harmony. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 9

Truth received into the heart will cleanse it of evil surmisings and bring in a spirit of unity and love. The Spirit of the Lord alone can make us clean and sweet and holy. Every one who professes to love and fear God should guard well the lips, that he speak no wicked things, and should keep the heart pure and holy. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 10

We see a great work to be done for our churches. On Sabbath, November 3, and again on Sabbath, November 10, and on the following day, the Lord gave me strength to speak to His people in San Francisco. The meeting for Sunday afternoon was well advertized, and there was a good outside attendance from the city. I told the people that since I was fifteen years old, the Lord had been giving me special messages for His people. He has given me light to give to His people to prepare them to receive the truth and be sanctified by its power, that the Holy Spirit may come into the life and transform the character. Then the Lord can use them as vessels unto honor—messengers to prepare the way before Him. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 11

The messages of truth are to be kept entirely free from cheap, common words of human devising. Thus forcible impressions will be made upon hearts. Let not our ministers cherish the idea that they must bring forth something new and strange, or that cheap, common expressions will give them influence. Ministers are to be the mouthpiece of God, and they must eradicate from their speech every expression that is cheap or common. Let them be careful lest by attempting during their discourse to cause laughter, they dishonor God. Our message is a solemn and sacred one, and we must watch unto prayer. The words uttered must be of such a character that through them God can make an impression on heart and mind. Let the ministers of the gospel be sanctified through the truth. Often self is interwoven with their discourses, and the angels cannot use their words to the glory of God. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 12

Jesus said to His disciples, “Ye are My friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.” [John 15:14.] My greatest desire is that our people may reach a higher plane of Christian character. Let our ministers read the Word, talk of the Word, and practice the Word. Every weakness of character is the result of Satan’s efforts. We need men who are humble, yet who bear themselves with sacred dignity. Manners that are odd or uncouth should be overcome. We need refinement of manner. We are to represent Christ in deportment, in attitude, in gesture, in word. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 13

Our ministers should seek constantly to improve in their manner of utterance. The throat and lungs should be merely a channel for the voice. The abdominal muscles should be used. If this were done, many would decidedly improve in their utterance and their powers of endurance. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 14

Ministers of the gospel should give a solemn and well-chosen representation of the Lord Jesus; for they are His ambassadors. Let the lips speak words of knowledge. Let the tongue give utterance to clean, refined, and sanctified expressions of truth. 21LtMs, Lt 356, 1906, par. 15