The Review and Herald


November 29, 1906

The Work in Oakland and San Francisco—No. 1


Ever since the close of the camp-meeting held at Oakland, Cal., July 19-29, 1906, aggressive labor has been put forth in that city. For a time, the large tent and about twenty of the family tents were left standing, to accommodate the workers that remained. Elder S. N. Haskell, assisted by Elder E. J. Hibbard, had charge of the company of laborers. RH November 29, 1906, par. 1

Sabbath and Sunday, August 18 and 19, I spent in Oakland. The meetings were still in progress. Elder and Mrs. Haskell were conducting Bible studies in the forenoons, and in the afternoons the workers in training were going out and visiting from house to house. These missionary visits, and the sale of many books and periodicals, opened the way for the holding of Bible readings. About forty men and women were attending the morning classes, and a goodly number of these students engaged in the afternoon work. While in Oakland, I had the privilege of speaking to these workers, and to our brethren and sisters from the Oakland, Berkeley, Alameda, and San Francisco churches. All assembled in the large tent for a union service. The Lord gave me freedom in the presentation of truth. RH November 29, 1906, par. 2

The labors of Elder and Mrs. Haskell have been greatly blessed of God. One day a woman, a stranger, slipped two coins into Sister Haskell's hand. Sister Haskell thought them to be two twenty-five-cent pieces, but when she looked, she saw that they were twenty-dollar gold pieces. Sister Haskell asked the stranger if she had not made a mistake, but she replied that she had not. The woman refused to give her name, but it has since been learned that she is not of our people. RH November 29, 1906, par. 3

A few days later, our brethren were obliged to vacate the place they had been occupying with the tents, as a circus was coming to occupy the grounds. RH November 29, 1906, par. 4

Friday, August 31, I made another trip to Oakland. As the large tent had been taken down, our people secured the use of the Congregational church, corner Eighteenth and Market Streets, for our Sabbath services. A few months ago our own church building in Oakland was sold, and our brethren and sisters are meeting in this rented church until some more permanent arrangement can be made. RH November 29, 1906, par. 5

On Sabbath morning Elder Haskell spoke in the Laguna Street church in San Francisco—the church that was not destroyed by the earthquake; Elder Hibbard spoke in Oakland, others in Alameda and Berkeley. In all these churches the appointment was given out that I would speak in the afternoon. RH November 29, 1906, par. 6

When I reached the church, I found the room crowded. I felt impressed to urge upon all our people present the necessity of taking a decided interest in working Oakland. We must not allow the enemy to come in and sow his tares among the precious seeds of truth that have already been sown. There are many religious movements, many “isms,” but Christ will identify himself with the needy souls who are seeking after truth. We need true workers,—workers whose hearts and minds are imbued with the truth, workers who will act a part in bringing the truth to other minds. Every Christian should be a missionary, working for the salvation of souls. RH November 29, 1906, par. 7

The children in our families need thorough instruction in the Bible. Let every soul put his talent of means, and his talent of speech, into the service of God. We are not to condemn others, but we must win them to a knowledge of the truth. RH November 29, 1906, par. 8

Because of the importance of this work, I have urged that Elder Haskell and his wife, as ministers of God, shall give Bible instruction to those who will offer themselves for service. God will use humble men. He will make of every consecrated man a light-bearing Christian. Not the most eloquent in speech, not those who are the best versed in so-called theology, are always the most successful, but those who will work diligently and humbly for the Master. The blessing of God rests upon those who are meek and lowly,—upon those who have the faith that works by love and purifies the soul. RH November 29, 1906, par. 9

Before the close of the discourse, I asked all to arise who would stand faithfully by Elder Haskell and his wife, by Elder Hibbard, and by those who were laboring with them. I urged the brethren and sisters to consider that now is the opportune time to work Oakland, and that to every man is given his work. I asked, “How many will pledge themselves to be in earnest in this work?” The whole congregation responded by rising, and we were encouraged to hope that much good would be accomplished by their united efforts. RH November 29, 1906, par. 10

On Sunday afternoon, I spoke again to our people assembled in the Congregational church. RH November 29, 1906, par. 11

A short time later, a vacant lot was found in a good residence district; and here a large tent and several smaller tents were pitched. The Bible training-school was continued daily, and evening services were held. RH November 29, 1906, par. 12

During the month of September I made two more visits to Oakland, speaking to our people in the Congregational church each time, and also speaking in the tent. RH November 29, 1906, par. 13

I have felt stirred with an intense desire to do all in my power to encourage the faithful workers in Oakland, as I have realized that many souls in this city and in near-by cities are in great peril. Satan is doing all in his power to make of no effect the merciful warnings of Jehovah. Notwithstanding the heavy judgments of God, the wickedness in San Francisco and in Oakland is increasing. RH November 29, 1906, par. 14

Thursday, October 18, I visited Oakland for the fifth time since the close of the July camp-meeting. The California Conference had just perfected all arrangements for beginning a series of tent-meetings in the very heart of the city, on Broadway, half a block south of the post-office. Elder Wm. W. Simpson is bearing a large share of the burden of these meetings, and is doing everything in his power to present the third angel's message in such a manner that all who hear may understand that the Bible lies at the foundation of all his statements. His strongest arguments are based on the plain words of the Old and New Testaments. RH November 29, 1906, par. 15

Brother Simpson's first meeting was held in the First Congregational church, corner Twelfth and Clay Streets, Thursday evening, the eighteenth. An intelligent class of people listened attentively for a full hour, as he spoke on the Millennium. Friday evening his first meeting was held in the large tent. The attendance was good. Saturday night the attendance was considerably larger, and many for the first time listened to an exposition of the first two chapters of Daniel. These evening discourses have been continued regularly, and the attendance is reported to be on the increase. RH November 29, 1906, par. 16

Brother Simpson dwells especially on the significance of the prophecies in the books of Daniel and the Revelation. By means of ingeniously contrived charts and symbolic representations, he holds the attention of the people, while he endeavors to preach the word. Through this effort hundreds will be led to a better understanding of the Bible than they ever had before, and we trust that there will be many conversions. Those who attend his lectures and are not converted, must practically reject the Word of God. RH November 29, 1906, par. 17

Elder Haskell and his wife, with some helpers, have just opened a Bible training-school in San Francisco, with headquarters at the Laguna Street church. The Lord blessed their efforts in Oakland, and they helped lay the foundation for a broad work to be carried forward in that city. Now, they enter San Francisco to do a similar work. RH November 29, 1906, par. 18

From town to town, from city to city, from country to country, the warning message of present truth is to be proclaimed, not with outward display, but in the power of the Spirit, by men of faith. In the golden censer of truth, as presented in the Scriptures, there is that which will convict and convert souls. As the truth that our Saviour came to this world to proclaim, is presented in the simplicity of the gospel, the power of the message will make itself felt. In this age, a new life coming from the Source of all life is to take possession of every faithful laborer. O, how little do we comprehend the breadth of our mission! We need to have earnest, determined faith, and unshaken courage in the Lord. Our time to work is short, and we are to labor with unflagging zeal. RH November 29, 1906, par. 19