Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 23 (1908)


Lt 346, 1908

Washburn, Brother and Sister [J. S.]

St. Helena, California

December 11, 1908

Previously unpublished. +Note

Elder J. S. Washburn
665 Decatur Street
Memphis, Tennessee

Dear Brother and Sister Washburn:

I received your letter a few days ago and today will attempt to reply to it. I was very pleased to hear the good news you wrote of the success of the work in Memphis. I thank the Lord that He has gone before you and prepared the way, enabling you to reach the very class of people that I was assured you could reach in that place. I knew that you desired to remain in Nashville, but I have prayed the Lord to give you hope, and courage, and a living faith in presenting the Bible truth for this time. 23LtMs, Lt 346, 1908, par. 1

I have been shown that the money that is lavishly spent by many believers for unnecessary things should be invested in the work of winning souls that are ready to perish. It is time that our people felt the need of being laborers together with God. Self-denial and self-sacrifice are highly appropriate for this time. The Lord will accept all who minister the Word of life, if they will give the message in the Spirit of Jesus Christ. 23LtMs, Lt 346, 1908, par. 2

At times I am so weighted down with the sense of my responsibilities that the burden becomes more than I can bear. About three days ago, while feeling the weight of this burden upon me, I had a special experience. I kept repeating the words: “All of Christ’s followers should feel a weight of responsibilities resting upon them daily; for we are certainly near to the close of this earth’s history. We must not relax our efforts, but become more and more vitalized by the Spirit of God. The sanctifying influence of the truth must be in the message we bear.” 23LtMs, Lt 346, 1908, par. 3

Tell the believers and your co-laborers that much depends upon the way they treat this message of so much importance. “Ye are laborers together with God.” [1 Corinthians 3:9.] If unbelievers see in our work and lives devotion and self-sacrifice in order to save the souls ready to perish; if they see self-denial characterizing our work, they will be impressed with the reality of the truths we profess. The truth which sanctifies the receiver will make its impression upon them. 23LtMs, Lt 346, 1908, par. 4

The Lord claims the service of all who claim to believe the truth for this time. They must be laborers together with Christ in carrying out the principles of the gospel. The light of every believer must be taken from under the bushel and given to the world. “Let your light so shine before men,” the Saviour declares, “that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” [Matthew 5:16.] There is to be no limit to the places where the light shall shine. It is to reach to the regions beyond. Tell it, urge it upon all with earnest force, that all are to give their service for those who are in the darkness of error. To teach the Word of God to unbelievers, to unite our prayers for them, are duties that we owe our Redeemer. 23LtMs, Lt 346, 1908, par. 5

The Lord demands the cultivation of every talent. “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind, and thy neighbor as thy self.” [Luke 10:27.] Our words, our prayers, our voluntary and sincere service, our humble, earnest efforts to represent precious, saving truth—by all these we are to show our love for Him who gave His life for us. O that our efforts to bless others might be in proportion to the light we have received! But we do not render to God returns that are proportionate to the wonderful truths we claim to believe. 23LtMs, Lt 346, 1908, par. 6

I present these words to those who claim to believe the truth for this time. Let the books of heaven record of you a righteous zeal; let it be said there that you are laborers together with God. I speak to all—lay members as well as ministers—Be laborers together with God. Let humility be cultivated, and Christ will be your efficiency if you will look unto Him, the Author and Finisher of your faith. 23LtMs, Lt 346, 1908, par. 7

The Lord has been asked to do a much-desired work for perishing souls in the South. Will you co-operate with the Divine agency? You have been bought with a price that you might be laborers together with God. It is your privilege to increase in knowledge and faith and capability. A weight of solemn responsibility should daily rest upon you, and evidence of this should be given in earnest work for the saving of the lost. 23LtMs, Lt 346, 1908, par. 8

Show your gratitude to God for every effort made to present Bible truths to the people. As Christ’s faithful followers, give evidence that you are receiving light and reflecting that light upon other souls. May the Lord bless and strengthen you, is my prayer. 23LtMs, Lt 346, 1908, par. 9