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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 14 (1899) - Contents
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    Lt 66, 1899

    Wessels, Henry

    “Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

    April 5, 1899

    Previously unpublished.

    My Dear Brother:

    You must rivet your soul to the Eternal Rock. This will keep you steadfast and immovable. You have not yet made an entire surrender, and until you do this, you will be vacillating, unhappy, irresolute, changeable. “If any man lack wisdom, let him ask of God, who giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not, and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering; for he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea, driven with the wind and tossed. For let not than man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.” [James 1:5-8.]14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 1

    This is a correct representation of your case. You are strongly affected by influences. Is this weakness always to exist? Will you not walk with God? Will you not take Jesus as your Counsellor? Will you not keep yourself in the channel of light? The work is yours of keeping yourself away from the companionship of those whom you are willing to please and want to please, but who do not lead you aright. If you will be humble enough to acknowledge your weakness to yourself and to God, and then pursue a different course, you may become a man who exercises all the talents God has given him.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 2

    It is right that your name should be on the church books. Why? Because by placing it there you show that you have entered into a covenant with God to follow the Lord Jesus in accordance with His invitation: “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” [Matthew 11:28-30.] Uniting in church covenant means that you have pledged yourself to wear the yoke of Christ, the yoke of restraint and obedience, that you engage by solemn covenant to be a follower of Christ.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 3

    Will you comply with the invitation to yoke up with Christ? Uniting with others in church capacity means much. It means that you have volunteered to serve Christ. But a formal union with the church without heart-union with Christ is worthless. We invite you to become a student in the school of Jesus Christ. You need a daily, genuine conversion. Link up with Christ every day by earnest prayer. “He that will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” [Mark 8:34.] Have you done this? When you do it from the heart, you will see that it means much to be a Christian. But by failing to lift the cross you lose much in this life and everything in the future life. If you have decided to be towed along, as the ship is towed by the hardworking tug, you will find yourself in the condition of the foolish virgins, without oil in your vessel with your lamp. Prayers and exhortation, all the good advice in the world, cannot save you.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 4

    If God has entrusted one talent to you, use it for Christ. Do not, for your soul’s sake, let your service be divided. If you give all you possess to God, this is but a small offering, but if it is your best, the Lord will work with you. Frail and inefficient you need not be if you decide that it is not best for you to try longer to serve God and mammon. By trying to serve two masters, you spoil yourself utterly for either. You neither make a successful worlding or a successful Christian. Your Redeemer has said—and His lips never made a false statement—“Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” [Matthew 6:24.] Then why not do the only safe thing for you to do—follow that which you know to be right, irrespective of inclination?14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 5

    You have grown to manhood, but you have not outgrown your childhood of self-indulgence. Genuine conversion is a grand and noble thing. It means leaving childish things behind, and being a man, one with Christ as Christ is one with the Father, the faith clinging to Christ, the friend of sinners. When you acknowledge Christ as your very best friend, when you are entirely satisfied with Him, you will be a happy man. You will put away childish things.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 6

    You and your wife both need every word I have written. Confess to God that you have wasted your opportunities and have used His money to gratify pride, to indulge appetite and the desire for pleasure. Cut away from your life the love of the world, Henry, cut it away quick! Remember that your willpower, the power of deciding, must be cultivated. If you would be what you might be but what you are not, you must bind up your will with the will of God. In short, you must yoke up with Christ. You must join yourself to the Lord. You then join your weak indecision to His firm strength of purpose, your ignorance to His wisdom, your unworthiness to His worthiness, your frailty to His enduring might. Then your words, your habits, your moral power, will be wholly on the Lord’s side. Spiritual poverty has passed away, because you have heeded the invitation, “Buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich.” [Revelation 3:18.] In the place of using so much money to keep up an appearance, you will be careful, because you realize the money is the Lord’s, to be placed in His treasury. You will see the necessities of the cause, and will realize that self-denial and self-sacrifice must be practiced, in order that there may be meat in the Lord’s house, that those whom the Lord sends with His message to relieve suffering bodies and needy souls, will have something with which to work.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 7

    In the heavenly courts we are called “laborers together with God.” “Ye are God’s husbandry; ye are God’s building,” the word of Inspiration declares. [1 Corinthians 3:9.] When you wed heart and hand to Jesus, you become an heir of God and a joint-heir with Christ. God loves you with the same love that He loves His only begotten Son. You are given a life insurance policy. “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you,” the apostle Peter writes. [2 Peter 1:2.] On what condition? you ask. On the condition that you work on the plan of addition. Set your God-given talents of intellect at work.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 8

    Turn away from frivolous things and receive the knowledge of God and of Jesus Christ our Lord. Are you learning of Christ? Are you putting to the stretch every spiritual sinew and muscle to obtain an increased knowledge of God through obedience to His commandments? Let us read on. “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who hath called us to glory and virtue, whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises, that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” [Verses 3, 4.]14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 9

    Do not suppose that you can unite yourself with the amusement-loving and self-indulgent, the gay and pleasure-loving, and resist temptation. But if you are seeking a knowledge of God, whom you realize has called you to no cheap character building, remembering always the words, “Ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building” [1 Corinthians 3:9], the companionship of Christ takes you right away from the company of those lacking in virtue and nobility, and places you in a life-giving atmosphere, because you are seeking with all your powers to glorify God. Man works and God works, and the promise is, You shall be a partaker of His divine nature, because you have escaped the corrupting influences of the world.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 10

    What is your experience, Henry? You are not to stop at any low standard. You cannot serve God and the world at the same time. There is a ladder for you to climb, round after round. The base of this ladder rests firmly upon the earth, and the topmost round reaches to the highest heaven. Christ Himself took humanity. He hid His divinity under the robe of humanity, that you might follow in His steps. The apostle continues, “And besides this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, (character), and to virtue, knowledge; and to knowledge, temperance; and to temperance, patience; and to patience, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness, charity. For if these things be in you and abound, they make you that ye shall be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” [2 Peter 1:5-8.]14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 11

    Henry, will you work on this plan of addition? Will you work on the giving side? While you add to the value of your character, the Lord works upon the plan of multiplication, for we read, “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you, through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, ... But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off.” [Verses 2, 9.] He lacks discernment. He needs the gold of a virtuous character—faith in Christ, the love expressed in the new commandment. The man who has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins cannot see the advantage of keeping self under control. He is uncleansed, as he was before, full of passion, full of wrath, full of bitterness.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 12

    If with the diligence enjoined in this chapter he had continued to advance in Christian growth, living upon the plan of addition, he would not be so blind as to what constitutes a virtuous character. He would understand that without the oil of grace in his vessel with his lamp, he is in a worse condition than the sinner, for though he has had the light, he cannot see the advantage of possessing the advantage of holiness.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 13

    “Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure, for if ye do these things ye shall never fall.” [Verse 10.] Henry, my brother, this language should be sufficient for you. This is your life-insurance paper, not made out according to the manner of the world, but according to the abundant provision of God. It assures you that if you work in God’s lines, you shall never fall. For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ. Can you, my brother, take hold of this hope set before you in the gospel? Jesus Christ is made unto us wisdom. How much you need this in verity and in truth, that you may determine to labor steadfastly to reach a higher standard.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 14

    A reward is presented to you far beyond any of the trifling things with which you now occupy your mind, the amusements which bring no satisfaction, no reward. Cannot you see that you must give account of your influence? It is God’s talent, lent to Henry Wessels, which he is not to bury in the earth. He is under obligation to God to use his entrusted gifts to glorify his Redeemer.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 15

    Are you doing what you can to co-operate with God in the saving of your own soul, which will never be saved unless you co-operate with God with all your mind and soul and strength? All that there is of you God requires you to put into the conflict; and improvement will come, in wisdom, in grace, in intensity of desire to conform your will to the will of God, and heed the exhortation, “Give diligence to make your calling and election sure.” [Verse 10.] You can make your life a lamentable failure by rejecting the light, or you can make it a glorious success by complying with God’s conditions. Your calling and election has been provided. Every means has been placed at your command; therefore be diligent, be earnest, be determined to make a record altogether different from the record you have made.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 16

    Blessings infinite and eternal are given to those who in this life partake of the divine nature and bear witness to what the truth of God can do for them. Will you not show the world what the truth can do for Henry Wessels? For your soul’s sake remember that it is your privilege to lay hold upon divine sufficiency. This will enable you to be a lightbearer to the world, because you do not exalt self, but Christ. You have consented to build in harmony with God, to bring altogether different material into your character-building.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 17

    “Ye are laborers together with God.” [1 Corinthians 3:9.] Take care, Henry, take care. You are now building on the sand. The storm and tempest will beat upon your house, making of it a complete wreck, unless you turn square about, refusing to associate with those who will lead your feet in false paths. If you go on as you have been going, all your castle-building will prove vain and treacherous.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 18

    “Ye are not your own; for ye are bought with a price.” [1 Corinthians 6:19, 20.] You and your wife have acted more like children than like souls bought with the precious blood of Christ. Christ says, My son, give me thine heart. [Proverbs 23:26.] I will lead thee, I will guide thee in safe paths. Will you now accept the rich blessings God waits to give you, before which all earthly objects, all ambitious projects, fade into nothingness? Man can receive no greater good than eternal blessedness in the kingdom of God. With Christ as an abiding Saviour, your joy will be full. Blessings you will have to give and by and by eternal riches to receive.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 19

    You are asked to be a laborer together with God. Are you, Henry? The Lord has rich blessings for you if you will receive them. Seeking for them, you will no longer be vacillating, all hope and brightness one day, yielding to temptation and expressing unbelief the next. Christ will pardon all your transgressions if you will only believe. There is full redemption for you if you will now humble your soul before God, closing the windows of the soul earthward, that the poisonous malaria of unbelief may not enter, and opening them heavenward, that the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness may shine in. Remember that there is something for you to do. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 20

    Rest in the promises, for God is behind every promise. Jesus loves you. He is making intercession for you. Do not be so indifferent, so careless and unstable. This is the height of folly. You must awake to divine realities, or you will surely lose your soul. A wise and prudent man will heed counsel. I have strong hopes for you. May God help you to see this matter as it is. Dismiss the temptations of the devil. Heed no cunningly devised fables. Enter into no evil path. Choose the good, and depart from evil. Cling to Christ every day, and you will be safe. Deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow Jesus. If you will heed these words, they will help you to help your brothers.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 21

    In love.14LtMs, Lt 66, 1899, par. 22

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