Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 23 (1908)


Lt 324, 1908

White, J. E.

St. Helena, California

November 3, 1908

Portions of this letter are published in 1MR 330-331. +Note

Elder J. E. White
Nashville, Tennessee

My Son Edson White:

I have read your letter to Willie regarding the colored preacher Elder Berry. If he is doing a good work, he should be properly supported. You may depend upon me to help some in this work of which you speak. Recently I placed some money <which had been entrusted to me—tithe money> in the hands of Elder Haskell to be used for just such cases as you have represented in your letter. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 1

I am anxious to have the business relating to the purchase of our conference school closed up. I have been solicited to write out the light that was given me concerning this school location, which I have done. I will send you a copy of the letter I wrote. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 2

Near Modesto, one hundred acres of land was offered us as a gift if we would establish our school there. But I could not see anything to invite us in the level roads and broad lands almost destitute of trees. When the question was asked, Shall we accept this offer, I said, No; we cannot accept it. It does not offer the advantages our teachers and students should have. Another offer of a hundred acres was also made to us, but we were not clear to accept. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 3

Then we were encouraged to inspect the Buena Vista property near Sonoma. In the retirement of this place, its wooded lands and its abundance of water; in the well-finished house with every convenience, I saw that which answered to representations that had been given. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 4

Brother Covell has made a thorough investigation of the orchard and says the fruit is excellent. This is an advantage that we can appreciate. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 5

After I returned to Oakland, I was instructed in the night season that the only safe course for us to pursue in the purchase of this property was to secure every foot of the land. I was shown that none of it should be allowed to come under the control of those who would work it on the Sabbath day. We therefore planned to purchase the whole. The proposition is to buy the property for $45,000, the owner taking over the Healdsburg school boarding house in part payment of the same. This will help us very much. Elders Cottrell and Knox and those who are interested in the matter are in favor of purchasing. We are to have sixty days in which to close the bargain. Elders Cottrell and Knox are attending to the business. We shall be very thankful when the matter is finally settled. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 6

For weeks I have been able to sleep but a few hours each night. I have been very anxious that this matter of the school location should be brought to a successful issue. We must have the best location possible, the best teaching ability, the best preceptor we can secure. While arrangements for the purchase of the Buena Vista property have been in progress, I have carried a heavy burden on my mind, fearing lest we should not come into possession of just the place we need. In this time of perplexity I have many times repeated the words, “I will make a man more precious than gold, even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir.” [Isaiah 13:12.] 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 7

My health has been such that I could not take a prominent part in the Medical Convention held at St. Helena. I promised that I would attend one meeting and read important matter that I had already prepared. But when I reached the sanitarium chapel, I found the room filled with people who expected a discourse from me. There were a number of the patients present in their wheel chairs. I longed for greater strength to speak, and rested my soul upon Jesus Christ, asking Him to give me words that would prove a help and blessing to the people. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 8

I read the twelfth and thirteenth chapters of Isaiah. As soon as I rose to my feet, I felt strength come to me. My voice was clear, and I talked for nearly an hour under the inspiration of the Spirit of God. It has been thus many times in my experience. Elder Cottrell said to me afterwards that he never felt more sensibly the power of the Spirit of God than at this meeting. Others said the same. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 9

Since that meeting my health has improved, and my courage has been renewed. I felt the truth of the words I spoke to the people, and the blessing of God that rested upon me on that occasion has been a living reality to me since. I have realized the truth of the assurance, “Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid; for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; He also is become my salvation. Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation. And in that day shall ye say, Praise the Lord, call upon His name, declare His doings among the people; make mention that His name is exalted. Sing unto the Lord; for He hath done excellent things: this is known in all the earth. Cry and shout, thou inhabitant of Zion; for great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee.” [Isaiah 12:2-6.] 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 10

Although I spoke for nearly one hour, I was not the least weary. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 11

I feel very deeply the great value the Saviour is to me. It was His mercy that gave us the gospel, that we might learn the wealth that lies in His divine nature. We are to appreciate the great gift of our heavenly Father in giving His only begotten Son to save a perishing world. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 12

On one occasion the Jews came to Christ with the question, “How long dost Thou make us to doubt? If Thou be the Christ, tell us plainly. Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me. But ye believe not, because ye are not of My sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me: and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand. My Father, which gave them Me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of My Father’s hand. I and My Father are One. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 13

Then the Jews took up stones again to stone Him. Jesus answered them, Many good works have I showed you from My Father; for which of these works do ye stone Me? The Jews answered Him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but because that Thou, being a man, makest Thyself God. Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, ye are gods? If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the Scriptures cannot be broken; say ye of Him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God? If I do not the works of My Father, believe Me not. But if I do, though ye believe not Me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in Me, and I in Him. Therefore they sought again to take Him, but He escaped out of their hand.” [John 10:24-39.] 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 14

Let none of us be disappointed and offended because we suffer reproach. It will be developed at the right time who are true and who are false. I thank the Lord for the courage He gives to all who are true to His Word. 23LtMs, Lt 324, 1908, par. 15