Manuscript Releases, vol. 6 [Nos. 347-418]


The Gifts of the Spirit

He [Jesus] told His disciples to tarry in Jerusalem until they should be endued with power from on high. “Without me,” He said again, “ye can do nothing.” (John 15:5.) But Paul declares, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” (Philippians 4:13.) 6MR 55.2

We should be often in prayer. The outpouring of the Spirit of God came in answer to earnest prayer. But mark this fact concerning the disciples; the record says, “They were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost.” (Acts 2:1-4.) 6MR 55.3

They were not assembled to relate tidbits of scandal, they were not seeking to expose every stain they could find upon a brother's character. They felt their spiritual need and cried to the Lord for the holy unction to help them in overcoming their own infirmities, and to fit them for the work of saving others. They prayed with intense earnestness that the love of Christ might be shed abroad in their hearts. This is our great need today in every church in the land. For, “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” (2 Corinthians 5:17.) That which was objectionable in the character is purified from the soul by the love of Jesus. All selfishness is expelled. All envy, evil-speaking are rooted out and a radical transformation is wrought in the heart. 6MR 55.4

“The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22, 23.) “The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.” (James 3:18.)—Letter 1c, 1890, pp. 7, 8. (To Brethren Atwood and Pratt,” May 28, 1890.) 6MR 56.1

The donation of the Holy Spirit was the greatest gift God could bestow upon finite man. This is free to all, and in this gift there could be no computation; this endowment specially signalized the enthronement of the only begotten Son of God in his mediatorial kingdom. In this the gift of the Comforter the Lord God of heaven demonstrates to man the perfect reconciliation which he had effected between himself and men, which hope, says the apostle, “We have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which entereth into that within the veil, whither the forerunner is for us entered.—Letter 35, 1893, p. 2. (To Brother and Sister Kellogg, February 19, 1893.) 6MR 56.2

The measure of the Holy Spirit we receive will be proportionate to the measure of our desire, and the faith exercised for it, and the use we shall make of the light and knowledge that shall be given to us. We shall be entrusted with the Holy Spirit according to our capacity to receive and our ability to impart it to others.—Letter 54, 1894, pp. 1, 2. (To Elder O. A. Olsen, June 10, 1894.) 6MR 57.1

When the lips of a speaker move under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the words of God find utterance in warnings, in reproofs, in appeals. This power is not of the speaker. It is a power given him by God, that he may reach those who are dead in trespasses and sins, and arouse them to see the need of receiving life from God. God works through His faithful servants, who do not shun to declare the whole truth in the power of the Spirit. Their work bears His endorsement.—Manuscript 161, 1897, 5, 6. (To “My Ministering Brethren,” December 16, 1897.) 6MR 57.2

This is the reception of the Holy Spirit, to know God and Jesus Christ whom he has sent. Then we shall have a genuine experience. The correcting influence of the Spirit of God is as a refining furnace, removing all dross, and leaving his image discernable in us.—Letter 121, 1898, p. 6. (To Elder and Mrs. S. N. Haskell, December 12, 1896.) 6MR 57.3

When you are baptized with the Holy Spirit of God, you will draw together with your brethren. When your brethren are baptized with the Holy Spirit, you will all draw in harmony.—Letter 55, 1899, p. 3. (To Dr. J. H. Kellogg, March 24, 1899.) 6MR 57.4

He [God] has in store for us the richest gift of heaven, even the gift of the Holy Spirit. He is waiting to pour upon His people the mighty power of this Spirit.—Manuscript 121, 1902, 10. (“The Results of Genuine Conversion,” typed October 15, 1902.) 6MR 58.1

God has instructed me to tell you and all His people to be very careful not to resist the working of the Holy Spirit,—the Comforter that Christ sends. Fear to take the first presumptuous step in resistance. When Christ spoke to the disciples of the Holy Spirit, He sought to uplift their thoughts and enlarge their expectations to grasp the highest conception of excellence. Let us strive to understand His words. Let us strive to appreciate the value of the wonderful gift He has bestowed on us. Let us seek for the fullness of the Holy Spirit.—Letter 155, 1902, pp. 5, 6. (To Brother and Sister Arthur, September 5, 1902.) 6MR 58.2

The Holy Spirit will work through every consecrated channel. When as a people we give evidence of our faith in the wonderful truths of the Word, and give these truths to the people, many eyes now blinded will be opened to discern spiritual things. As we keep the way of the Lord to do justice and righteousness, sinners will be drawn to Christ and will be converted.—Manuscript 24, 1908, 6. (“A Plea for Aggressive Work,” typed May 5, 1908.) 6MR 58.3

I have a message to bear to our people. Some of them are in danger of being deceived by the workings of the enemy. At the present time there are in this Conference a man and his wife who have strange manifestations that they believe to be caused by the Holy Spirit. But I am instructed that these manifestations are caused by the same spirit that wrought fanaticism after the passing of the time in 1844. 6MR 59.1

At that time, as you are well aware, we met and opposed the work and influence of many who supposed that they were exercised by the Holy Spirit, but who had gone into fanaticism. They had what they supposed were visions from God, and to vindicate their wonderful power, they would pray loudly, and would sometimes sing with a loud voice, dancing or working the body from side to side and to and fro. These experiences are brought to my mind as forcibly as if they had happened but yesterday. 6MR 59.2

I have already written you something of my visit with Mr. and Mrs. Mackin. I did not sanction their experience. I told them about some of the experiences that we had had to meet and of the things that had happened in the past, and I hoped that they would regard as a warning this story of fanaticism in early days. I appealed to them to have an experience based, not on wonderful manifestations, but on the word of God. I pointed out how the enemy would use fanaticism as a means to place us before the world in such a light as to hedge up our way, to a large extent. 6MR 59.3

We are not surprised to find that Satan will work today as he has worked in the past. We must live by faith; for without faith it is impossible to please God. He is ready to hear our prayers, and to impart to His people the Holy Spirit for service; but I have been warned that the manifestations that are seen in this brother and sister are not the workings of the Holy Spirit. Boasting claims of righteousness and noisy demonstrations are calculated to lead to a fanatical experience that will confuse many minds. If such things are encouraged, a wave of fanaticism will come into our ranks that will be detrimental to the work of God, and that will sweep away many souls in a dangerous delusion. These things are designed by Satan to deceive, if possible, the very elect. 6MR 59.4

It is our privilege to preach the Word in the demonstration of the Spirit. It is the privilege of every soul to exercise faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. But pure spiritual life comes only as the soul surrenders itself to the will of God through Christ, the reconciling Saviour. It is our privilege to be worked by the Holy Spirit. Through the exercise of faith we are brought into communion with Christ Jesus, for Christ dwells in the heart of all who are meek and lowly. Theirs is a faith that works by love and purifies the soul, a faith that brings peace to the heart, and leads in the path of self-denial and self-sacrifice. 6MR 60.1

The promise is that if we follow on to know the Lord, we shall know that “His going forth is prepared as the morning.” It is essential that we have daily the converting grace of God in the heart, that all our words and deeds may give evidence that we are in submission to the mind and will of God. In doing with meekness and humility our appointed service, we are to reveal the converting power of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Then we become the Lord's agencies to do His work. 6MR 60.2

With humility and meekness, and yet with great earnestness we are to render our service to God. Christ is our Pattern, our Example in all things. He was filled with the Spirit, and the Spirit's power was manifested through Him, not by bodily movements, but by a zeal for good works. 6MR 60.3

Among God's people there is need of deep, thorough heart-searching, that we may be able to understand what constitutes true religion. Christ is a wonderful Educator. His life and words are based upon sound principles. His manner of teaching was very simple. He was fashioned after the divine similitude, and if we follow Him, we shall make no mistakes. 6MR 61.1

Let there be no oddities or eccentricities of movement on the part of those who speak the word of truth; for such things will weaken the impression that should be made by the Word. We must be guarded; for Satan is determined, if possible, to intermingle with religious services his evil influence. Let there be no theatrical display; for this will not help to strengthen belief in the Word of God. Rather it will divert attention to the human instrument. 6MR 61.2

Let your conversation be “honest among the Gentiles; that whereas they speak against you as evil doers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.” “Be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous.” “Sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be always ready to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.” 6MR 61.3

Our lives must be hid with Christ in God. We must have a personal knowledge of Christ. Then only can we rightly represent Him before the world. Wherever we are, we must let our light shine forth to the glory of God in good works. This is the great, the important work of our lives. Those who are really under the influence of the Holy Spirit, will reveal its power by a practical application of the eternal principles of truth. They will reveal that the holy oil is emptied from the two olive-branches into the chambers of the soul-temple. Their words will be imbued with the power of the Holy Spirit to soften and subdue the heart. It will be manifest that the words spoken are spirit and life.—Letter 352, 1908. (To Elder S. N. Haskell, December 16, 1908.) 6MR 61.4