Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 23 (1908)


Lt 68, 1908

Haskell, Brother and Sister

St. Helena, California

February 5, 1908

Portions of this letter are published in 7MR 404.

Elder and Mrs. S. N. Haskell

Dear Brother and Sister Haskell:

I am very glad to receive letters from you. I am praying that the Spirit of the Lord will work on human hearts. 23LtMs, Lt 68, 1908, par. 1

Brethren Knox and Corliss have been in the same places in California for the past three or four years, and it is desirable that a change should now be made. It is not often wise to keep workers in one place for over two or three years, even if their services are acceptable. But the mold that has been given by these brethren in some of the places where they have labored has not been one that is acceptable to God. There is need that others come in who will change the order of things. If you can have united with you one or two influential men who walk humbly with God and render special help to the churches, a different condition may be brought about. God desires that His people shall be molded and fashioned after the divine similitude. 23LtMs, Lt 68, 1908, par. 2

God is displeased when men are placed over the church who are not themselves under the divine guidance, whatever may be their knowledge of the truth. Satan takes every advantage of a lack of spiritual tact on the part of the workers. How can men who are not under discipline to God, and who cannot see their own deficiencies, give the right mould to the church? God does not accept the service of such. Because they do not see where they make mistakes, they continue to follow their natural tendencies. 23LtMs, Lt 68, 1908, par. 3

The churches in Oakland and its suburbs need for their leaders men who have wisdom to discern how to help the church members and how to exert an influence that will give the right mold to the work. The necessities of these churches should have been realized long ago; but they have been allowed to exist, and now it is time that changes be brought in. The work in these important places cannot be left for circumstances to control. The believers need a different atmosphere to surround them; they need an education of a character that will give them an understanding of the gospel, not only in word, but in spirit and practice. 23LtMs, Lt 68, 1908, par. 4

I will leave this matter with those who ought to be proper judges of what our churches need in example, in education, in the manifestation of kindness, in true, faithful watchcare, such as a faithful shepherd would give to his flock. 23LtMs, Lt 68, 1908, par. 5

Great blindness has been manifested by those who have kept in positions of responsibility men who could not discern the effect of their words upon church members. Where there might have been united action, a wholesome influence exerted, a Christlike, God-fearing work accomplished for the salvation of souls, there has been deficiency and weakness. A much higher tone should have been given to the work, a more spiritual, healthful influence exerted. The Lord does not call to the position of shepherd those who do not carry a burden for the sheep of the flock. God says of such, “Thou are weighed in the balances, and art found wanting.” [Daniel 5:27.] 23LtMs, Lt 68, 1908, par. 6

I would be pleased, Elder Haskell, if you and your wife could unite with the workers of California in guiding our people amid the changes and turmoil, the violence and crime that are on every side. Keep firm hold on the power of the One who sees and knows, and who will enable you to give the trumpet a certain sound. Work intelligently, work disinterestedly. But I need not tell you this. You cannot well do otherwise with the experience that you have had and your knowledge of the Word of God. 23LtMs, Lt 68, 1908, par. 7

A definite work must be done; the trumpet must give a certain sound; for the Lord is giving evidence on all sides that His coming is near, much nearer than when we first believed. The work which I have outlined to be done for the churches of Oakland and its suburbs should also be done for our other churches throughout the conference. Fresno needs help. God calls for minute men who will be wide-awake and who will be faithful shepherds of the flock. There is great neglect in all our churches in meeting the spiritual needs of the people. 23LtMs, Lt 68, 1908, par. 8

I call upon my brethren to wake up. For Christ’s sake do not sleep now. There needs to be an arousing on all sides. Many of the believers in Fresno are asleep. They are not preparing their white garments in which to stand in the great day of the Lord. I give you the warning, Make ready. The world is sporting itself in its own wickedness. Let no heart be exercised unto covetousness. Those who have this light, if they will study the Word of God, need not be deceived. If they are humble and obedient to the Word of the Lord, they will walk in a plain path. But the Lord will not be trifled with. Christ is our Pattern. God wants us each to feel our deep need of Him and be converted daily to His service. 23LtMs, Lt 68, 1908, par. 9