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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 18 (1903) - Contents
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    Lt 270, 1903

    White, J. E.

    “Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

    December 21, 1903

    Portions of this letter are published in UL 369. +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.

    My dear son Edson,—

    I am drawn out to write to you not to fail or become discouraged. You are too anxious and too much troubled in regard to the many things that you wish to have done. You must now lay aside your anxiety, and work and worry less. You are sacrificing too much if you sacrifice your health and place yourself where you can not work at all. Then, you see, none of your work would be done. Will you not now unload and take things more easily, saying, “Each day I will do only what I can do calmly and well, and I will let the rest wait. I must preserve the powers of my mind.”18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 1

    You would better meet with loss in some things than by imprudence to lose your power to work. I am instructed to say to you, Brace up in the strength of the Lord to do what you can without overtaxing your physical or mental powers.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 2

    You are now warned. One of the reasons why I would not let you take the burden of getting out a new edition of Patriarchs and Prophets was that you were wearing out your strength by trying to do things that you should let others do. The Lord has given you your work. It is the preaching of His Word by pen and voice; and He will sustain you as you do this work. He has a message for you to hear, and He bids me say to you that you cannot do justice to your work as a minister of the gospel while you are kept weighed down with perplexities that others should carry. Unload, and place the burden of so much secular responsibility upon those who have been given that line of work. You should not carry the burdens that you have been carrying. They worry and perplex you. With so many responsibilities to carry, you cannot do justice to the work of soul-saving. You must have rest.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 3

    In regard to paying me the money that I paid out on the debt at the Review and Herald, make no account of it, and worry no more over it. I shall not consent to receive anything from you on this debt. I made up my mind to tell you not to do as you have been doing. I determined to take the responsibility, as your mother, of saying that it must not be. I wrote a letter to this effect two months ago, but laid it away, and now I cannot find it. I have now a higher authority for saying that you must make a change—the word of the Lord. Your health and life are precious in His sight, and He will help and strengthen and bless you. But you are not to sacrifice your health, placing yourself where you are unable to do the work that the Lord has given you.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 4

    God will make your mind fruitful in explaining His Word if you will lay off the many burdens that you are carrying. You must do this, even if some work be left undone. The Lord says to you, “Come apart from these constant perplexities, and let others take up the work. You must stand in your place.” Vigor will reward the efforts and the sacrifices made to press toward the mark of the prize of our high calling in Christ.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 5

    Worldly attractions will be presented to draw the attention from the Lord Jesus, who is anxiously watching, longing to encourage the heart of the striving ones. “Ye are the light of the world.” [Matthew 5:14.] To the world, to angels, and to men you may show that the hope of seeing the face of God is worth all the efforts and the sacrifices that the attainment of the hope demands. Let every striving soul remember that he must meet evil with good, and place heavenly advantages before earthly attractions.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 6

    In the games in which in ancient times men strove for the ascendancy, only one received the prize. Only one hand could grasp the coveted garland. However eagerly and earnestly the other competitors had striven, they were disappointed. It is not so in the heavenly contest, the race for eternal life. Each one who does his best will receive the crown of immortality.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 7

    “And every man that striveth in the games exerciseth self-control in all things. Now they do it to receive a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.” [1 Corinthians 9:25.] As we engage in the great struggle, let us think of what we shall lose if we fail. We shall lose the eternal life purchased for us by the blood of the Son of God. Shall we, then, grudge the toil of eternal vigilance? If we do all in our power to resist evil and surmount obstacles, we shall gain the victory. Holy angels co-operate with us as we work out our own salvation with fear and trembling. With unswerving faith we are to stand at our post of duty, refusing to dishonor God by giving up the conflict, quitting ourselves as brave soldiers before the world and before the heavenly angels who have an intense longing that we shall not fail or become discouraged.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 8

    As man strives to overcome the evil in his nature, trusting wholly in God, the Lord works in him, to will and to do of His good pleasure. Striving for the crown of life has an uplifting influence upon the one who strives, animating him with holy zeal, leading him to see the excellence of the promised reward. He is privileged to see by faith Him who is invisible.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 9

    The prayer that Christ offered just before His trial shows what we are to be in the wold. Do we comprehend this prayer?18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 10

    “Neither for these only do I pray,” Christ said, “but for them also that believe on Me through their word; that they all may be one, even as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us; that the world may believe that Thou didst send Me.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 11

    “And the glory which Thou hast given Me I have given unto them; that they may be one, even as We are one; I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be perfected into one; that the world may know that Thou didst send Me, and lovedst them, even as Thou lovedst Me.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 12

    “Father, I desire that they also whom Thou hast given Me be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory, which Thou hast given Me; for Thou lovedst Me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, the world knew Thee not, but I knew Thee; and these knew that Thou didst send Me; and I made known unto them Thy name, and will make it known; that the love wherewith Thou lovedst Me may be in them, and I in them.” [John 17:20-26.]18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 13

    Paul draws a contrast between our present and our future state. “You hath He quickened,” he says, “who were dead in trespasses and sins; wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience; among whom we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 14

    “But God, who is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, ... and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus; that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God; not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” [Ephesians 2:1-10.]18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 15

    The Lord is preparing His people to know what it means to have an abiding Christ. This experience will be theirs if they will turn to Him with full purpose of heart.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 16

    “He is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us.” “For through Him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; and are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone; in whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord; in whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.” [Verses 14, 18-22.]18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 17

    “What things were gain to me,” Paul declares, “these have I counted loss for Christ. Yea, verily, and I count all things to be loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord; for whom I suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but refuse, that I may gain Christ, and be found in Him, not having a righteousness of mine own, even that which is of the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God through faith; that I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, becoming conformed unto His death; if by any means I may attain unto the resurrection from the dead.” [Philippians 3:7-11.]18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 18

    “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ; according as He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love.” [Ephesians 1:3, 4.] God has chosen us to obtain in this life an experience that will fit us for the future life. Pastors and teachers should keep ever before their hearers, young and old, the instruction that will help them to gain this preparation. Each one has a positive work to do. We are not to depend on feeling. Our obedience is to reveal our faith in God’s Word.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 19

    We have a wise, loving, heavenly Father, who hears the prayers of His children. But He does not always give them what they desire. He withholds that which He sees would not be for their good. But He bestows on them all that they need. He gives them that which is necessary for growth in grace. When we pray we should say, “Lord, if what I ask for is for my good, give it to me, but if it is not, withhold it, but give me Thy blessing.” The Lord hears our petitions. He understands our situation; and He will supply the very thing we need. He will strengthen our faith and increase our spirituality. The Lord is good and merciful, perfect in understanding and infinite in wisdom.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 20

    There are those who pray for temporal blessings which they think will bring them worldly prosperity. God sees that such blessings would spoil their spiritual life. He gives them an understanding mind, showing them that it is not best for them to have riches, and that they must be satisfied with His grace and peace and love.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 21

    God, who knows the end from the beginning, jealously guards the welfare of His children. In answering their prayers, He will give them that which will be continually fitting them to be partakers of the divine nature and to overcome the corruption that is in the world through lust.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 22

    We must submit our will to God’s will. We must have confidence in His love, His wisdom, His faithfulness, His keeping power.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 23

    The Lord has instructed me that the time has come when there should be unity in the ranks of His people. If there are those who have not faith in the messages that have come to us from God by His Word and by the testimonies of His Spirit, they need to know for themselves what is the faith once delivered to the saints. The representation made shows that there are some who have lost their bearing. Let us have an understanding in regard to the points on which we must unify. Let us not leave those who have been unsettled to remain still unsettled, to go over the same objectionable matters when a favorable time shall come.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 24

    The last chapter of Matthew contains the minister’s commission: “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:19, 20.]18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 25

    Christ’s ministry is to be the ministry of His followers. To branch off into spiritualistic ideas is to depart from the faith, giving heed to doctrines of deception.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 26

    The messages that God has given through His servant John are now to be proclaimed as of special importance. This is our work—to revive the sacred truths that called us out from the world and made us what we are. We are not to yield up one feature of the faith, but are to hold our confidence firm unto the end. We are to give no place to doctrines that are not in harmony with the truth for this time.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 27

    Christ has stated the truth too plainly for it to be misunderstood. “I am the bread of life,” He declares. “He that cometh to Me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst. ... This is the will of Him that sent Me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on Him, may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” “As the living Father hath sent Me, and I live by the Father; so he that eateth Me, even he shall live by Me. ... It is the Spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing; the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” [John 6:35, 40, 57, 63.]18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 28

    When we understand these words, much less of self will be brought into our work. When we receive and assimilate the words of Christ, a deep, fervent piety will animate us. We need far more of Christ and nothing of the deceptive sentiments of the enemy.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 29

    Read and study the sixth chapter of John, and let there be an emptying of the heart of all selfishness. Let the messages be proclaimed that will arouse people to stand in the day of God.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 30

    There were some who, when they heard the doctrine of unreserved consecration, declared that Christ’s words were hard sayings, and they walked no more with Him. They turned from Him who, had they believed on Him, would have been to them the light of life.18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 31

    Just such things will be seen today. Paul says, “The Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. ... Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them; for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.” [1 Timothy 4:1, 16.]18LtMs, Lt 270, 1903, par. 32

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