Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 8 (1893)


Lt 16, 1893

Caldwell, W. F.

Bank’s Terrace, Wellington, New Zealand

June 11, 1893

Portions of this letter are published in 2SM 63-69.

Caldwell, W. F.
Melbourne, Victoria

Dear Brother,

Your letter addressed to me was received at the beginning of the Sabbath. I had answered your telegram the same evening of the afternoon that I received it, advising you to counsel with Elder Starr, and that letter was on the way. I sent quite a lengthy communication which I wished you to see before leaving Melbourne. I should advise you to attend the school, and not to leave this country until you become thoroughly settled in your mind as to what is truth. I sincerely hope that you will attend this term of school and learn all you can in regard to this message of truth that is to go to the world. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 1

The Lord has not given you a message to call the Seventh-day Adventist church Babylon, and to call the people of God to come out of her. All the reasons you may present cannot have weight with me on this subject, because the Lord has given me decided light that is opposed to such a message. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 2

I do not question your sincerity or honesty. I have written long letters at different times to those who were accusing the church of Seventh-day Adventists of being Babylon, that they were not handling the truth. You think individuals have prejudiced my mind. If I am in this state, I am not fitted to be entrusted with the work of God. But as this matter has been brought before my mind in other cases where individuals have claimed to have messages for the Seventh-day Adventist Church, of a similar character, and the word has been given me, “Believe them not.” “I have not sent them, yet they ran.” [Jeremiah 12:6; 23:21.] 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 3

Elder Edwin Jones, a dying man, had his room filled with interested people while he was at the hospital at Battle Creek. Many were deceived, for the man seemed to be inspired. But the light that was given me was, “This work is not of God. Believe not the message.” 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 4

A few years since, a man named Pulse, of Red Bluff, California, came to me to deliver his message. He said, it was the loud cry of the third angel which was to lighten the earth with his glory. He thought God had passed all the leading workers and given him the message. I attempted to show him that he was mistaken. He said Seventh-day Adventists were Babylon, and when we told him our reasons and set the matter before him, that he was in error, he had great power come upon him, and he certainly gave a loud cry. I sent to the office for Bro. Jones and my son, Willie, who came in. Mr. Pulse stood up under a power proclaiming the loud cry of the third angel’s message, swelling louder and louder. We had much trouble with him; his mind became unbalanced, and he had to be placed in the insane asylum. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 5

One Garmire advocated and published a message in regard to the loud cry of the third angel; he accused the church in a similar manner to what you are now doing. He said the leaders in the church would all fall through self-exaltation, and another class of humble men would come to the front, who would do wonderful things. This man had daughters who claimed to have visions. This delusion was opened to me. This Garmire is an intelligent man, of an acceptable address, and self-denying and full of zeal and earnestness, and carrying an appearance of consecration and devotion. But the word of God came from God to me, “Believe them not, I have not sent them.” [Jeremiah 12:6; 23:21.] 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 6

He claimed to believe the testimonies. He claimed them to be true, and used them in the same manner you have used them to give force and appearance of truth to his claims. I told them this message was not of God; but it was deceiving the unwary. He would not be convinced. I told them the visions of his daughter were spurious, yet these visions, he claimed, were like the visions of Sister White, testifying to the same things. This daughter was deceiving the family, and several others who believed these false messages. I was shown that the young girl was not virtuous; but was corrupt. She was a harlot. Just before we left for Australia the girl said the Lord had a message for her to go away, and stay away one or two years. She went, and for a time her parents did not know her whereabouts. During this time she gave birth to an illegitimate child. Still the parents will not give up their false message. I visited the family, which is kept in order and under discipline; but the girl that had the visions was not there. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 7

If ever a man that I looked upon was inspired, this man certainly was; but I told him plainly his inspiration was of Satan, not of God. His message bore not the divine credentials. In order for him to give this message broadcast to the world, he made an honest, conscientious young man believe it to be his duty to steal the Review and Herald list. This is a state prison crime, and the young man ran away from Battle Creek. He did not dare return to Battle Creek for some time. The time was set for probation to close, and as every prediction failed, the young man saw he had been deceived, and he confessed his sin and is now an honorable member of the Battle Creek church. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 8

Only two years since, another man by the name of Cass from Connecticut, came out with a message which he called new light in regard to the message of the third angel. This intelligent family have, through this delusion, separated from the Seventh-day Adventist church. Because I had borne a decided testimony against this new light, (so called), in Norwich, Connecticut, where he lived, he opposed me and my work and testimonies. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 9

The father of the Cass children, attended the conference and Ministers’ Bible Institute held in Battle Creek; but he held himself aloof, and did not harmonize with the spirit of the meeting. He left for his home and began to leaven the little church in Norwich. If I had not labored in that place, they might have broken up the whole church with their repudiating the truth and position of Seventh-day Adventists, and Mrs. White in particular. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 10

At this same time, one Mrs. Marks came from Washington, D.C., claiming to be wholly sanctified, and to have the power of healing. This spirit led many to become bewildered. The same accusing spirit was with them, that is, that the church was all wrong and God was calling out a people who would work miracles. A large class of our people in Battle Creek were being severed. I was moved upon by the Spirit of God, in the night season, to write to our people in Battle Creek. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 11

God is leading out a people. He has a chosen people, a church on the earth whom He has made the depositaries of His law. He has committed to them [a] sacred trust and eternal truth to be given to the world. He would reprove and correct them. The message to the Laodiceans is applicable to Seventh-day Adventists who have had great light and have not walked in the light. It is those who have made great profession, but have not kept in step with the Leader, that will be spewed out of His mouth unless they repent. The message to pronounce the church Babylon and call the people of God out of her does not come from any heavenly messenger, or any human agent inspired by the Spirit of God. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 12

The true Witness says, “I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten; be zealous therefore, and repent. Behold, I stand at the door, and knock; if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.” [Revelation 3:18-21.] 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 13

Jesus is coming in to give the individual members of the church the richest blessings if they will open the door to Him. He does not once call them Babylon, nor ask them to come out. But He says, “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten” (with messages of reproof and warning). [Verse 19.] These reproofs I am not ignorant of. I have given warnings because the Spirit of the Lord has constrained me to do so, and have uttered reproofs because the Lord has given me words of reproof. I have not shunned to declare the whole counsel of God which has been given me for the church. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 14

I will say in the fear and love of God, I know the Lord has thoughts of love and mercy to restore and heal them of all their backslidings. He has a work for His church to do. They are not to be pronounced Babylon, but to be as the salt of the earth, the light of the world. They are to be the living messengers to proclaim a living message in these last days. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 15

“And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory. And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 16

“And I heard another voice from heaven saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities. Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double. How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow. Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire, for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her.” [Revelation 18:1-8.] 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 17

The whole chapter shows that Babylon that has fallen is the churches who will not receive the message of warning the Lord has given in the first, second, and third angels’ messages. They refused the truth and accepted a lie. They refused the messages of truth. See 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12. The message in the 18th [chapter] of Revelation is plain and clearly defined. (Verse 3): “For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.” Any one who reads this chapter need not be deceived. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 18

How Satan would exult to have a message go broadcast that the only people whom God has made the repositories of His law are the ones to whom this message applies. The wine of Babylon is the exalting of the false and spurious sabbath above the Sabbath which the Lord Jehovah hath blessed and sanctified for the use of man, also the immortality of the soul. These kindred heresies, and the rejection of the truth, convert the church into Babylon. Kings, merchants, rulers, and religious teachers are all in corrupt harmony. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 19

Again I say, the Lord hath not spoken by any messenger who calls the only church in the world that keeps the commandments of God, Babylon. True, there is chaff with the wheat; but first gather the chaff and bind it into bundles to burn it, but gather the wheat into the garner. I know that the Lord loves His church. It is not to be disorganized or broken up into independent atoms. There is not the least consistency in this. There is not the least evidence that such a thing will be. Those who shall heed this false message and try to leaven others will be deceived and prepared to receive advanced delusions, and they will come to naught. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 20

There is, in some of the members of the church, pride, self-sufficiency, stubborn unbelief, and a refusing to yield their ideas, although evidence may be piled upon evidence which makes this message to the Laodicean church applicable. But that will not blot out the church that it will not exist. Let both tares and wheat grow together until the harvest. Then it is the angels that do the work of separation. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 21

I warn the Seventh-day Adventist church to be careful how you receive every new notion, and those who claim to have great light. The character of their work seems to be to accuse, and to tear down. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 22

My Brother Caldwell, I would say to you, Be careful. Go not one step farther in the path you have entered upon. Walk in the light “while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you.” [John 12:35.] 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 23

You complain of being treated coldly in Battle Creek. Did you go with a humble spirit to those who are spiritual and say, Will you examine the Scriptures with me? Shall we pray over this matter? I have not the light, I want it, for error will never sanctify the soul. Can you be surprised that they would not give you all that confidence you might think they should, after the experience they have passed through? 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 24

Should not the words of Christ have any weight? “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” [Matthew 7:15.] “Lo here and lo there is Christ,” will be multiplied. [Mark 13:21.] Let the believers heed the voice [of] the angel [who has] said to the church, “Press together.” In unity is your strength. Love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous, God hath a church, and Christ hath declared, “The gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” [Matthew 16:18.] The messengers the Lord sends bear the divine credentials. I have tender feelings toward you, but come to the light, I beseech of you. 8LtMs, Lt 16, 1893, par. 25