Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 23 (1908)


Lt 236, 1908

Haskell, Brother and Sister

Los Angeles, California

August 13, 1908

Portions of this letter are published in 7BC 974. +Note

Elder S. N. Haskell
Box 597
Oakland, California

Dear Brother and Sister Haskell:

I was very glad to read letters from you. We reached Los Angeles on Friday afternoon about 5:30, after a long and trying journey. The heat was very great, and we were delayed over eight hours at different places on the way. On Friday morning before daylight we were held for two hours, because of a freight wreck on the line, and again at 6:30 we were stopped because of another wreck. This time we were compelled to wait for nearly seven hours, while the wrecking car went ahead of us and cleared the line. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 1

The heat in the cars was intense, so we took our lunch basket and went on to the hillside and ate our breakfast in the shade of a large water tank. We had plenty of fresh fruit with us, for which we were very thankful. Brother and Sister Crisler helped to make up our party. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 2

After eating breakfast we returned to the car and waited for the time when we could move on. We had a compartment to ourselves, but we could not keep out the hot air, which was heavily laden with dust. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 3

Although weak, I spoke Sabbath morning to an immense crowd gathered in the large tent. My voice had not its usual strength; but the Lord blessed me with freedom, and I received the testimony from several who sat on the outskirts of the crowd, that they heard every word I spoke. I was glad of this opportunity to speak and trust that the Lord will strengthen me to speak several times. I am not so strong as I could wish to be, but I praise the Lord for His strength-giving power. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 4

This morning, Wednesday, I spoke to the ministers gathered in one of the smaller tents, presenting to them the advantages to be gained by having the meeting continue another week. Thus they could become more intimately acquainted with those coming to the ground who are not of our faith, and yet who in many respects are working on right lines. There are many Women’s Christian Temperance Union workers here who are interested in our work, and some are attending the meetings. I am anxious that everything possible shall be done to become acquainted with these women. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 5

Day by day I have thought of you and wished you were here. But I know that something important has detained you. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 6

Last evening W. C. White, Elder Cottrell, and Elder Reaser came to my room and wished me to express myself in regard to Brother Reaser, whether it is best for him to go to Mexico or to remain in the work in Southern California. I was sorry to have to say to Brother Reaser that it was not wise for him to serve in this conference another year. His example of ruling it over God’s heritage as he had done the years he had served makes it wise for him to change his field of labor. This ruling element has worked to the injury of the Lord’s cause and has wrought changes in the conference which have greatly damaged its prosperity and success. Elder Reaser has made decided changes in his course. But the years that have passed have brought in an objectionable experience to many of our churches. That men with the Scriptures in their hands should consider themselves a ruling power to forbid or permit as they choose is a mystery. The Lord forbids it. God has given to no man an arbitrary power over His people. The man who, as president of a conference, undertakes to exercise such authority has mistaken his duty. No man is placed as god, that his word should be yea and amen. The man who does not understand his own strong traits of character, and who seeks to become a law unto the church, will become a cause of weakness and of spiritual decadence. I am instructed that this spirit is no more to find place among us. We are to be under the rulership of the Lord Jesus Christ. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 7

I am instructed to say to our ministers and workers in every line, Be careful that the work of cleansing and sanctification shall go on in your own individual souls. Let your first thought be to make your calling and election sure. Your example is to be full of kindness and encouragement. No masterful spirit is to come in, but let the heart be filled with the tenderness and love and compassion of Christ. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 8

Let not commercialism come in to spoil your Christian experience. Let the same energy and careful thought that you once brought into worldly matters be cleansed from all selfishness and brought into your service for God, to whom we owe everything. Work every day for sanctification of the spirit through belief of the truth. Let all realize that they are chosen of God to reveal that they understand the mystery of godliness. Help souls to the clear light of Christian principle by extending a helping hand to all who need encouragement. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 9

Every believer in Oakland and San Francisco, and in every church established in the name of the third angel’s message, should now be at work to help the souls who need help. I would say to every believer, Bring the spirit of heavenly grace into your soul, into your experience—this is the impress of the character of Christ. Angels are watching you, and they sing songs of thanksgiving and praise to God and the Lamb when His people engage in faithful, unselfish labor for others. And your reward for service will be found in the reflection of the tender spirit of Christ in your character. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 10

By communicating to others the grace we receive, we shall be made partakers of the rich blessings of God. Obedience to His will will keep the soul in the love of Christ. Bind yourselves up with Christ and with God, and reflect His glory to the souls ready to perish. Let there be a reconversion of soul on the part of those who have allowed themselves to grow careless and indifferent. If we would look upon suffering humanity with eyes that see their need, and would heed the command of Christ, Go work today in My vineyard; if we would speak to them words of comfort and wisdom, work out before them the principles of the gospel, the message of mercy would soon reach to every part of the world. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 11

We become overcomers by helping others to overcome, by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony. The keeping of the commandments of God will yield in us an obedient spirit, and the service that is the offspring of such a spirit, God can accept. O that we all in the day of final award might hear the words spoken individually to us, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” [Matthew 25:23.] How many in our churches will seek to set such an example as will reflect to mankind the Light of the world? 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 12

The Saviour calls for workers who will give themselves to be worked by the Spirit of God, workers who will yield to the refining, elevating influences of truth, and thus be fitted to wear the crown of life in the kingdom of God. 23LtMs, Lt 236, 1908, par. 13