Lt 130, 1899


Lt 130, 1899

Irwin, G. A.

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

August 29, 1899

Previously unpublished.

Dear Brother:

I am sending to Edson copies of some things which I have written, which he will permit you to read, and which you may copy if you wish, for your own special use. But be careful how you use them, and do not make it harder for me than is necessary. Lt130-1899.1

After I get off the present matter that I am writing, I intend to largely discontinue my letter writing; and as soon as I can, get into books the matter which our people generally need, so that the churches in all the fields can be benefitted by it. Lt130-1899.2

There is one matter which I wish to have clearly and distinctly understood, regarding the dealings of our publishing houses with missionary enterprises which have been robbed of that which was their due and with men who have been oppressed and closely dealt with. The proposition that the authors should sponge from off the slate the claims which they were bringing against the Review and Herald and the Pacific Press was given for the authors themselves to act upon. It was not intended that the men in the publishing houses were to sponge off all the figures regarding their unjust dealings. Lt130-1899.3

The responsibility of the publishing houses to make restitution regarding their unjust dealings with the Southern Field stand just the same as before the authors begun to press their large and unjust rates. It has been plainly specified to me that this matter must not be delayed or allowed to rest, until the means which has been absorbed by the Review and Herald, the General Conference, and the Pacific Press is carefully reckoned up, both principal and interest, and placed in faithful hands to be used in the Southern Field. Lt130-1899.4

In the case also of Elder Littlejohn there has been narrow and selfish dealing. The Lord hates robbery for burnt offerings. Lt130-1899.5

I am sorry to tell you that since the instruction was given to authors to erase their claims against the publishing houses, there has been manifested by the managers of these publishing houses just such selfishness as was shown by the [authors] which caused them so much distress. God is grieved by the spirit that has been manifested by these men who have felt so rejoiced that the authors were advised to rub out their accounts. God did not give them this work to do. God has permitted the matter to proceed as it has up to the present time to test the true honesty of these men’s hearts. Lt130-1899.6

To allow the money which belongs to the Southern Field, both that which was raised by donation and that which should have gone to it from the books published in its interest, to be longer withheld from the field will be a very great wrong. It will be establishing a wrong principle among God’s people to allow this to pass without restitution. Every transaction of this character which is known should be carefully searched into by those in authority, and restitution should be made. Lt130-1899.7

It was right for the ones who felt that they had been dealt with unjustly to consent to themselves [to] do the work of rubbing out the accounts. But in all cases where persons have been specified in the testimonies as having been unjustly dealt with, the Lord would have publishing houses make square dealing with them, and pay them their dues, and to deal in like manner with any others whom the publishers know to have been oppressed and wronged. The Lord allowed this matter to come up in such a way as to be a test as to the selfishness of all the parties concerned. The authors manifested a spirit which, if restraint had not been mercifully given, would have caused such confusion and entanglements as it is impossible to describe. And the managers of the publishing houses have manifested an unwillingness to make restitution, which is passing strange. Lt130-1899.8

For a long time the Lord has been speaking to the managers of our publishing work regarding the unjust dealings with Edson White, regarding the Gospel Primer, the profits of which were needed in the poverty stricken field where he was at work. Time and again the case has been plainly stated, and for the men managing the Review and Herald to let the matter go on as it has, for them to continue to refuse to do justice and judgment, is greatly displeasing to the Lord. Lt130-1899.9

Never will the office of publication be clear until its managers shall correct these things which have been repeatedly presented before them. May the Lord open the eyes of those who are too blind to see things in a correct light. I greatly fear that reformation will never come to the hearts that cannot understand what Christ would do were He in their place. The managers of our institutions are called of God to represent Christ in their spirit and in their work. Lt130-1899.10

I write you these things because they are to be candidly considered, and heeded, else there will stand against the actors in these matters an account which they will not wish to meet in the day of judgment. O, for the workings of the Holy Spirit, not for an hour, not for a few days, but throughout the daily life, and for every day of the life, is my prayer. Lt130-1899.11

Brother Irwin, I often think of you, and pray for you at the family altar, also for Elder Haskell, and for all in responsible positions. I make no more calls for Edson to come to Australia. I would not have him leave his field of labor. But brethren, what are you going to do? Are you going to co-operate with him, and help him? The light which I have is plain, that there has been a great neglect to bring help for the Southern Field. I have been instructed of the Lord to make appeals in behalf of this field. These must not be passed by as of little importance. Lt130-1899.12

The Lord calls upon His people to work heartily, and promptly for the uplifting of the colored people. Carry the matter to God in prayer, and to God’s people in earnest appeals. Anywhere, everywhere, that means can be raised for this field, call for help, and do not wait for slow and roundabout methods. Lt130-1899.13