Ellen G. White Writings

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Manuscript Releases, vol. 2 [Nos. 97-161], Page 244

MR No. 147—Literary Societies; Theatrical Performances

[Further materials desired by A. L. White for use in correspondence relative to dramatized programs in SDA churches and schools.]

The purpose and object for which literary societies are established may be good, but unless wisdom from above, and continual reliance upon God, is preserved by all, there will be a decided failure in its exerting a saving influence.

When God's professed people voluntarily unite with the world or give men of short religious experience the preeminence in these literary societies, they do not have a high estimate of eternal things. They step over the line in the very first movement. There may be boundaries, set rules and regulations made, but notwithstanding all this, the worldly element will take the lead. Men on the enemy's ground, led and controlled by his power, will have a controlling influence unless there is an infinite power to work against them. Satan uses men as his agents to suggest, to lead out, to propose different acts, and a variety of amusing things which give no strength to the morals or elevation to the mind, but are wholly worldly. Soon the religious element is ruled out, and the irreligious elements take the lead.

Men and women who will not be ensnared, who will move straightforward in the path of integrity, loyal and true to the God of heaven whom they fear, love, and honor, can have a powerful influence to hold the people of God. Such an influence will command respect. But this vacillating between duty and the world gives the world all the advantage and will surely leave its molding power, so that religion, God, and heaven, will scarcely enter the thoughts.

If youth, and men and women of mature age, should organize a society where Bible reading and Bible study should be made the prominent theme, dwelling upon and searching out the prophecies, and studying the lessons of Christ, there

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