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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 16 (1901) - Contents
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    Lt 134, 1901

    Teachers and Students of the Healdsburg School

    St. Helena, California

    October 11, 1901

    Portions of this letter are published in TDG 293; SD 207, 315; CTr 175. +NoteOne or more typed copies of this document contain additional Ellen White handwritten interlineations which may be viewed at the main office of the Ellen G. White Estate.

    To the Teachers and Students of the Healdsburg School,—

    I wish to write to you some things which have been forcibly impressed on my mind during the night season. You have come to Healdsburg to attend school. Most of you have a knowledge of the truth. Let each student remember that as he associates with the other students, he has responsibilities to fulfil. Every one has an individuality of his own. While one may be strong on one point, he may be very weak on others, having faults to overcome. God wants you to be a help to one another.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 1

    How many of you will now take your position on the side of Christ, determined that during this term you will not only advance in scholarship, but that you will make advancement in learning of the great Teacher? To each one of you He gives the 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.]16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 2

    If you will accept the yoke of restraint and obedience, you will find that it is of the greatest advantage to you. Wearing this yoke keeps you near to the side of Christ, and He bears the heaviest part of the burden.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 3

    “Learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart.” [Verse 29.] To learn the lessons Christ teaches is the greatest treasure students can find. Rest comes to them in the consciousness that they are trying to please the Lord.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 4

    While at school you will be tested and tried. Christ desires you to be like Him in character. He came to our world to live the life which all must live who are accepted as members of the royal family. It is your privilege by the grace of Christ to form a character which will enable you to be an overcomer. And the Saviour says, “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 3:21.] This is the prize to be given to those who overcome. Is not this a matter of living interest to us?16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 5

    Your instructors in school have every phase of character with which to deal. This is a very difficult, important work, and they need your prayers. Remember that they have continual temptations to meet. You should daily ask God to help them by His Holy Spirit to be a help to you. You can be a continual encouragement to them, for to students as well as to teachers God will give the inspiration of His Holy Spirit. But if you do not seek to overcome as Christ overcame, you will make very hard the work of those who are bearing heavy responsibilities. Satan will tempt you to be thoughtless and inattentive, to fail of putting earnest effort into your school life.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 6

    Students, do all in your power to lighten the burdens of your teachers. Pledge yourselves daily to act a noble part by showing your instructors that you mean to do your very best to improve in every way. Use your time as if this term were the last opportunity you would have to attend school. Make the most of the golden opportunity offered you. Do your very best. Be faithful, obedient students upon whom Christ can look with pleasure. Live so that He can speak to you the words of commendation, “Well done, good and faithful servant, thou hast been faithful over a few things; I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.” [Matthew 25:23.]16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 7

    We read in Revelation, “Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white; for they are worthy.” [Revelation 3:4.] At that time the condition of the church was not favorable to the development of Christlikeness. But there were a few faithful souls who were determined to be partakers of the divine nature. Daily they were tested and tried. Continually temptation came upon them. But they watched and prayed, laying hold by faith on the One who is ever ready to hear the petition of the humblest suppliant. And Christ was not ashamed to call them brethren. He declared, “They shall walk with me in white; for they are worthy.”16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 8

    Who of the students in this school will refuse the inducements which the Word of God presents to lead their fellow students to live the life of a Christian? Will you not all bring joy to the heart of Christ by striving to make yourselves worthy of His commendation? Do you not desire to be counted worthy to walk and talk with the Prince of Light and Life? Will you not endeavor to reach the high standard of perfection? Thus you honor your parents, filling their hearts with gladness. As you seek for Christlikeness of character, revealing this in word and action, by your sympathy and love for your teachers and for one another, the citizens of Healdsburg will see that you serve God. It is by striving for the mastery over temptation that God’s children show that they love Him and keep His commandments.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 9

    I hope that every student will realize that it is his duty to make the most of the advantages given him in school. Let all heed the words of the Saviour, “He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.” [Verse 5.]16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 10

    There are some who are an injury to their companions. Unchristlike in character, they have not the approval of God, and they seek to make others like themselves. God forbid that these should continue in sin. Let not the citizens of Healdsburg have cause to say that the children of Seventh-day Adventists are wicked in their practices, worse than the children of those who make no profession of Christianity. Such a testimony causes the fallen angels to exult.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 11

    You will go through this world but once. Then do not choose as companions young men or young women who will lead you in wrong paths. Turn away from these tempters, for they are Satan’s helping hand, used by him to beguile souls to dishonor God. Remember that it is your privilege to be Christ’s helping hand, to aid Him in winning souls to God. Do not give the enemy any advantage. Study the history of Daniel and his fellows. Though living where they were met on every side by the temptation to indulge self, Daniel and his companions honored and glorified God in their daily life. They determined to avoid all evil, to refuse to place themselves in the enemy’s path. And with rich blessings God rewarded their steadfast loyalty.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 12

    Each one of us is making his or her future. He who desires the life which measures with the life of God must take a firm stand against the depravity which is spreading its loathsome disease over the world. He must reject the wrong and choose the right, bravely resisting temptation in every line. He must overcome small temptations; then he will be strengthened to overcome large ones.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 13

    There are those who say, You need not be so particular about little matters. In such, conscience accommodates itself to the suggestions of evil until they are educated to do the work which places them in Satan’s army. From small wrongs they are led to large wrongs. The moral powers are prostrated. The lower passions bear sway, holding the entire being in the tyranny of Satanic power. The high, noble purposes which might have controlled the life are swept away by self-indulgence.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 14

    God calls upon every youth to cease to do evil by learning to do well. Seek to do your best every day. Fight manfully against hereditary and cultivated tendencies to wrong. Unite with one another in being true to virtue, true to God. Be studious. Reach upward for the highest attainments. The Lord commends earnest, determined efforts to gain that knowledge and understanding which will enable you to take your place in the higher grade in the courts above. He looks with approval on watchful, diligent students.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 15

    Here are those who are preparing to enter the ministry. They have an excellent opportunity to begin practical work by overcoming all in the life that is offensive to God. In your school work cherish the purest, holiest principles. Pray as did Daniel—three times a day, alone with God. Confess every sin you have committed, every mistake you have made. If in any way you have injured your fellow-students, confess also to them. God says, “Confess your faults one to another, and pray for one another, that ye may be healed.” [James 5:16.] Thus you build barriers between yourself and sin. You are walking in harmony with God. He has avouched Himself as One who will hear and answer your sincere, fervent prayers. He has assured you that He will pardon and accept you. How powerful you may be in this assurance! The Lord is near to all who call upon Him—near to answer and to bless. Then let every student pray constantly. You may so live that your instructors will feel that they are walled in by the prayers of faithful, loving disciples.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 16

    Let every student realize that he is in the school to do missionary work. In sympathy and love help one another to advance in the upward path. Labor for those among you who are unconverted. Keep the missionary spirit alive. Let your hearts be vivified by the Spirit of God. Be eager to give help and courage to others. Those students who receive that they may impart are a great comfort and encouragement to their teachers. The faithful will be tried. But those who endure the trial know better how to help others than if they had not been tried.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 17

    Let this school term be a time in which you will be truly prepared for missionary work. In the meetings of the church do your duty faithfully as representatives of Jesus Christ. Much depends on the union of the church and the school. The efforts of the church and the school are to be blended in the advancement of one great interest—the promotion of God’s work.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 18

    We have no time to lose. Students are to be prepared to work intelligently for the Master. Wherever it is possible they should, during the school term, engage in city mission work. They should also do missionary work in the surrounding towns and villages. As they do this work, the value of true education will be revealed.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 19

    To the parents living in Healdsburg who have sent their children to the school, I would say, For Christ’s sake co-operate with the efforts made by the teachers in the school to raise the standard of spirituality. Hold up the hands of the teachers. Show a deep interest in the work of helping your children to form characters after the heavenly pattern. It is your duty to do all you possibly can to carry out God’s purpose for your children. When the Lord sees that you are in earnest in striving to save their souls, He will give you grace and power to enable you to accomplish this work.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 20

    God has given His people great light in His Word. But this light is a benefit to the believer only as he practices the truth, purifying his soul by obedience. Is Satan always to triumph because parents misrepresent God by following worldly plans, failing to show the power of Christ to cleanse the heart? The whole church suffers when the children of one family are unruly. Christ is soon to come. Our schools are to reach the high standard of dependence on Bible principles. Parents need a much deeper sense of what it means to be Christlike. They need to see the importance of laboring for the salvation of their children. God demands from them much greater consecration than they have ever shown before. Unless they reform in many ways, the school will not accomplish what it should.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 21

    The home is the child’s first school. God will hold those parents accountable who do not discipline their children in accordance with His instruction. Parents are to seek God earnestly and obey Him implicitly, and they are to require obedience from their children. Do not think that you can neglect your children and then secure their future safety by sending them to school and Sabbath school. God calls upon you to do your neglected work. In the home, practice temperance in all things. And sustain the teachers who are trying to give your children a true education.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 22

    God said of Abraham, “I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.” [Genesis 18:19.] If parents desire their children to be educated in accordance with the Lord’s plan, they must work in God’s way, in the home life, training their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 23

    Parents in Healdsburg, awake, and place your influence on the side of the school, purifying the souls under your special care. Follow the exalted principles of the Word of God. Command your household according to the law of the Lord, else your souls and the souls of your children will be lost.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 24

    I tell you in the name of the Lord that if parents and children are saved in the kingdom of God, a greater work must be done than our eyes have yet seen—a work that will endure because it is done in repentance, humility, and contrition. The light which shines from the cross of Calvary shows the work which <God requires to> be earnestly and vigilantly done as long as time shall last.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 25

    The third angel is flying in the midst of heaven, heralding the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. This represents the work which is to be done in these last days. The message loses none of its power in its onward flight. John sees the work increasing in power till the whole earth is filled with the glory of God. The message, “Fear God and keep His commandments; for the hour of his judgment is come,” is to go with a loud voice. [Revelation 14:7.] With intensified zeal and energy human beings are to carry forward the work of the Lord. In the home, in the school, and in the church, men, women, and youth are to be prepared to give the message to the world. Our schools should be more efficacious from a missionary standpoint, more like the schools of the prophets. The teachers are to walk very <close with> God.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 26

    Now, just now, we need Calebs and Joshuas. We need strong, devoted, self-sacrificing young men and young women, who will press to the front, who, after a short time spent in school, will go forth to give the message to the world. God will help them as He helped Daniel, giving them wisdom and understanding.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 27

    Cannot we discern the signs of the times? Cannot we see that Satan is working with intensity of effort, uniting the enemies of God’s kingdom in a desperate confederacy that he may gain control of the world? This work is advancing faster than we imagine. Shall we, who have God’s Word in our hands, sink into a lukewarm condition?16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 28

    “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” [Philippians 2:12, 13.] Thus divinity and humanity are to unite in the great, grand work of overcoming evil. Those who enter heaven will enter by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony. When the redeemed surround the throne of God, with palms of victory in their hands, it will be seen how they won the battle. It will be seen how Satan linked himself with those who were determined to be first, and that God’s children could not have successfully resisted his power and subtlety unless divine power had united with human effort.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 29

    To be saved, a man must gain the victory over himself, his temper, his inclinations. His will must be brought into conformity with the will of God. The glory in heaven is for those only who on this earth work out the righteousness of Christ. Students, read carefully and prayerfully the first chapter of James. Seek to understand your individual responsibility. Move steadily forward, and the Lord will make you more than conquerors. Take hold of the work with your teachers, pressing on from victory to victory. Keep yourselves under God’s discipline. Then this will be the best term of school ever held in Healdsburg.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 30

    The knowledge Christ has of His churches, shown by His messages to them, is an illustration of the knowledge He has of each student. Remember His message to the church at Ephesus: “Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.” [Revelation 2:4.] Teachers and students, do not forget that these words may be applicable to you. You may be cherishing ambitions which need close investigation. Apparently you may have excellent qualifications for God’s work, but you may be suffering from a spiritual disease which, if not checked, will prove fatal.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 31

    “I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.” [Verse 4.] God regards the loss of the first love as a great loss. It is a fall from a high standard of spiritual life to a low standard. Unless the first love is most carefully cherished, all other qualifications for service are worthless. No outward efforts can take the place of the love which abides in the heart of every true Christian. You may think to supply the place of true devotion by feverish activity, but the salt has lost its savor, the perfume of true, Christlike love is lacking.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 32

    He who in selfishness strives for the highest place weaves into the web of his life threads which spoil the pattern. The people of God have had great light. They show by their character-building how far they are walking in the light. “By their fruits ye shall know them.” [Matthew 7:20.] Man may make a high profession, but if he does not practice Christ’s teachings, he will not attain to life eternal.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 33

    The religion of Christ never degrades the receiver, never makes him coarse or rough or uncourteous. It never incapacitates him for imparting that which he has received. The truth as it is in Jesus is warm with love and comfort. Day by day the soul is to receive this truth; for it is spiritual food. Knowing that we have a living Christ, we may safely trust the soul to His keeping. He says, “Be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” [John 16:33.] There is divine power for every one who will receive Christ by faith. In the Redeemer’s power, practicing self-denial, they can walk in perilous places. “He that will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” [Mark 8:34.] These words are spoken to every one who desires to be a Christian. Shunning self-denial and the cross, you shun the reward promised to the faithful.16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 34

    Day by day that which takes place in this school is registered in heaven. Day by day the work of each student is recorded in God’s books. What shall these books testify regarding your experience during this term?16LtMs, Lt 134, 1901, par. 35

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