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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 15 (1900) - Contents
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    Lt 53, 1900

    Haskell, S. N.

    “Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

    April 5, 1900

    Portions of this letter are published in 1SM 21-22; Ev 379-380; 1MR 20; 5MR 361-362; 8MR 66-71.

    Dear Brother:

    I rise this morning at half past one o’clock. Lest I should miss your questions, I will now try to answer one at least of them.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 1

    In regard to our brethren writing on the third angel’s message: Let them write. Bear in mind that in the branches of the vine there is diversity in unity. Life in nature objects to uniformity. There is variety in the human body, from the eyes to the feet. Yet all these members are dependent upon one another to make a perfectly whole. In all the variety composing the human body, there is harmonious action in conformity to the laws controlling the being. There is an unseen, conscious, indivisible unity, keeping the bodily machinery in action, each part working in harmony with every other.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 2

    There is variety in a tree, there are scarcely two leaves just alike. Yet this variety adds to the perfection of the tree as a whole.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 3

    In our Bible, we might ask, Why need Matthew, Mark, Luke and John in the Gospels, why need the Acts of the Apostles, and the variety of writers in the Epistles, go over the same thing?15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 4

    The Lord gave His Word in just the way He wanted it to come. He gave it through different writers, each having his own individuality, though going over the same history. Their testimonies are brought together in one Book, and are like the testimonies in a social meeting. They do not represent things in just the same style. Each has an experience of his own, and this diversity broadens and deepens the knowledge that is brought out to meet the necessities of varied minds. The thoughts expressed have not a set uniformity, as if cast in an iron mold, making the very hearing monotonous. In such a uniformity there would be a loss of grace and distinctive beauty.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 5

    We are not to feel that we must speak the very same things, giving the same representation in the same words, and yet there is to be unity in the diversity. All the different testimonies unite to form one whole, as the books of the Bible are brought together, and bound under one cover. But should Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John go off on some tangent, contradicting each other’s testimony, then there would be confusion. In the presentation of truth by different minds, there is to be unity in diversity.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 6

    One must not labor to have everything that comes from his mind entirely different from that which comes from another man’s mind. But he is to follow in the line where the Spirit of the Lord shall direct, then there will be different figures and different ways of presentation, that will interest and educate different minds. Some are always straining to get something original; this places them in great danger. They produce something new, that is not according to the Word of God, and they have not the discernment to see the real harm that results from their ambition to excel some other one in new and strange productions. Thus error comes to appear to them as truth, and they present it as wonderful new light, when it is an innovation that makes of none effect a “Thus saith the Lord.”15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 7

    Let all be under the controlling influence of the Holy Spirit of God. Under the direction of the Holy Spirit, one may use the same expressions used by a fellow worker under the same guidance. He should not make an effort to do this, or not to do it, but leave the mind to be acted upon by the Holy Spirit. There is one thing all should do, “Endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit, in the bonds of peace.” [Ephesians 4:3.]15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 8

    Churches are built in many places, but they need not all be built in precisely the same style. Different styles of building may be appropriate to different locations.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 9

    In the breastplate of the high priest, there were many stones, but each stone had its special light, adding to the beauty of the whole. Every stone had its special significance, bearing its important message from God. There were many stones, but one breastplate, So there are many minds, but one Mind. In the church there are many members, each having his peculiar characteristics, but they form one family.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 10

    The Creator of all ideas may impress different minds with the same thought, but each may express it in a different way, yet without contradiction. The fact that this difference exists should not perplex or confuse us. It is seldom that two persons will view and express truth in the very same way. Each dwells on particular points which his constitution and education have fitted him to appreciate. The sunlight falling upon different objects gives those objects a different hue.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 11

    Through the inspiration of His Spirit, the Lord gave His apostles truth, to be expressed according to the development of their minds by the Holy Spirit. But the mind is not cramped, as if forced into a certain mold. Men may not have precisely the same way of viewing or expressing truths as we have, yet they may be just as precious in the sight of God as we are. There is not to be a thread of selfishness or self-exaltation in our work, for we are drawing our spiritual supplies from the same storehouse, and are wholly and entirely dependent upon God, for His grace and His Spirit’s working.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 12

    In strict loyalty, for the glory of God, we are to bring to the people all the light and evidence possible. In order to do this, we must be constant learners in the school of Christ. We are to learn His meekness and lowliness. Only thus can we, by our words and in our character, impart the Holy Spirit’s unction.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 13

    If there is a difference of expression in presenting the Truth, let every one seek to view all things in the light of the glory which shineth in the face of Jesus Christ. The more we shall be animated and united by His surpassing love, and the more we shall reveal of that tender, compassionate Spirit which made our blessed Master so long and patiently bear with the misunderstandings of those whom He had selected as His workmen. They were to be educated in close communion, yet their thoughts might vary.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 14

    We are often exhorted, “Be ye all of one mind,” which means the same as “Endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bonds of peace.” [1 Peter 3:8; Ephesians 4:3.] All should seek to draw as closely together as possible, by dwelling upon those things in which all can agree, rather than upon those things that seem to create a difference.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 15

    “All ye are brethren.” [Matthew 23:8.] “Ye are not your own, ye are bought with a price.” [1 Corinthians 6:19, 20.] Our owner is God. The same blood that purchased one brother, purchased the next also, and the next. All are born of God by the same Spirit. All are members of the same body, and are worked by the same Spirit. All feed on the flesh and blood of the Son of God, the Word, which is Spirit and life. The sustenance of all comes from the same Source. We must not think it a virtue to differ. We are in close bonds of relationship one with another. If the same vitalizing current is flowing through our minds and hearts, we shall act in harmony. In failing to do this, we deny the Source of all spiritual life.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 16

    By the meekness and lowliness of Christ’s earthy life, the exhortation is given, “Love as brethren,” as members of the same family. Notwithstanding your dissimilarity in habits and character, “be pitiful, be courteous.” [1 Peter 3:8.] True love is not a mere emotion. It does not consist in sentiment alone, it is a principle manifest in works, in noble and unselfish deeds. When God’s people are actuated by this love, all plans, all activities will be appreciated as coming from one Source.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 17

    I think I have answered your question. Although Elder Jones or Elder Prescott may write, your individuality remains the same. You are to write, as God shall lead your mind. Your individuality cannot be submerged in that of any man. You can, if you will, place yourself under the direct beams of the Sun of Righteousness, and catch the heavenly glow. Then the softening, subduing love of Christ will come into your heart, and the grace of the tenderness of Christ will mellow your spirit and reveal the same in words and utterances. You will work out that which God works in.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 18

    What you cannot do, God can do, and will do through you, if you will heed His counsel. You may realize your inability. But it is not S. N. Haskell that is supposed to work. It is not what S. N. Haskell can do, but what God can do through you. All things are possible to Him.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 19

    Elder Smith was one mentioned to connect with you, and help you. But be assured that, if you will move in Christ’s order, your inability will bring out the assurance of God’s sufficiency. What is impossible for the human agent to do, God will do through you. Begin then, and advance. Do the work, believing that it is the right thing to do, and expecting the Lord to help you and your wife, and lead you in clear lines, working in and through you. As the Lord’s mind becomes your mind, a divine tenderness will take possession of your soul. The channel that has been choked with misunderstandings will be cleared, the debris will be swept away by the current of Christ’s love. The love of Christ will flow out to your brethren, and through them to others. Be pitiful to those whom you regard as weak and erring. In your work manifest the compassion of Christ. See how often His love broke forth in expression of sympathy for the unshepherded flock, the hungry multitudes.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 20

    Many will need to receive the object lesson from God’s workmen. With many it is much easier to criticize, rebuke, and condemn than to speak words of encouragement. As laborers together with God, we are not to think lightly of souls that have cost the Lord so much, and who, through the giving of His own Son to live in humanity, may have everlasting life.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 21

    While we are to show no mercy to sin, we are to lift up the head of the perishing sinner. We should point him to Christ on the cross, suffering as a sin-bearer, because He loved man.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 22

    I must stop writing. I have much more to say, but cannot say all now. I had not the least idea of writing as I have done, but the Lord has carried my mind on and on, until you have the matter I send. I hope to meet you in America, for we shall need all the help we can possibly obtain. I dread going to America, but cannot feel to say I will not go. I expect to go, just how soon I know not. I am working constantly, early and late. I hope you will do as you say in your letter. Come apart, and rest awhile. This you must do; it is your duty. If you think it better, first write out the things you have without reference to Brother Smith, because [you are] so far from him. At all events, take hold of the work.15LtMs, Lt 53, 1900, par. 23

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