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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 18 (1903) - Contents
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    Ms 155, 1903

    Our Youth to be Shielded From Evil Influences


    October 25, 1903 [typed]

    Previously unpublished.

    We are living in a time of special peril to the youth. Satan realizes that the end of the world is soon to come, and that he must improve every opportunity of enlisting young men and young women into his service. In these last days he will devise many specious deceptions to lead them astray. We need now to consider the words of warning written by the apostle Paul, and to preserve our youth from seeing and hearing many things that are sinful, and from living in an atmosphere that is largely irreligious.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 1

    In the second epistle to the Thessalonians [Corinthians] we read: “Be not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be My sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.” [2 Corinthians 6:14-18.]18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 2

    Special light has been given to me in regard to why we should not establish immense sanitariums. In these large medical institutions there are gathered together many tourists who must be waited upon by our nurses and helpers. Our young men and young women who from their earliest years have been shielded from evil associations are thus brought into contact with all classes of worldlings and are influenced to a greater or less extent by the sight of their eyes and the hearing of their ears. Many become like those with whom they associate, losing the simplicity and the modesty that Christian fathers and mothers should constantly guard by careful instruction and earnest prayers.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 3

    Among the many unbelievers who patronize our large sanitariums, a few may come to a knowledge of the truth; but much more will be lost than gained, because our youth, in their association with men and women who fear not God, will meet with seductive influences that are almost irresistible. Satanic agencies will make every effort possible to spoil the purity of mind and soul, and many will never free themselves from the snare of the enemy.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 4

    We are living amidst the perils of the last days. What can be said to warn our people against the danger of permitting their children to leave the influences of home life, where they have been kept from the evils of the world, and go to the Battle Creek Sanitarium, where they will act as servants to the class of unbelievers who patronize this institution? I would advise parents to place their children in our smaller medical institutions nearer home. Fewer perils will be encountered in these places than in the Battle Creek Sanitarium.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 5

    In many homes the father and the mother have allowed their children to rule. Such children are in far greater danger than are those who have learned the lesson of obedience; for the disobedient suppose that they may do as they please. They have failed of receiving a disciplinary training that is very essential. Their parents have not done diligent, faithful work in the home and have failed of imparting to them a knowledge of obedience which would have strengthened them to resist temptation. When these undisciplined children enter an immense institution where there are many influences that tend to destroy spirituality, they are in grave peril; and the education they receive is more often an injury than a blessing.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 6

    I lift the danger signal. Parents, keep your children near you. Do not send them hundreds of miles from home, to a place where you cannot be in close touch with them. In some places there may be sown in their minds the seeds of unbelief and of erroneous theories. I shall not be free until I warn parents not to send their children to the Battle Creek Sanitarium, where the helpers in their work mingle with tourists and a great company of unbelieving patients, and where the forces of the enemy are so strongly entrenched.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 7

    We do not say that there are not many worthy people among the patients and the tourists who are guests at the Battle Creek Sanitarium; for there are. But while we know that there are a number whose hearts are true, and who are benefited spiritually by their visit to the institution, there are many others whose influence over the inexperienced helpers leads our youth into Satan’s snares.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 8

    In the visions of the night I was in a large assembly where this matter was up for consideration. The question was asked, “Dare you venture to make the experiment?” The Speaker—One of authority—spoke decidedly. “The salvation of the souls of your children,” He declared, “is of more value than the education they receive in this place, where they are constantly exposed to the society of unbelievers. Many who come to this institution are unconverted. They are filled with pride and have no connection with God. Many of the young men and young women who wait on these worldlings have had but little experience and easily become entangled in the snares that are laid for their feet.”18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 9

    “What can be done to remedy this evil?” some one present asked. The Speaker answered: “Since you have placed yourselves in this position of peril, let Christian men and women of mature years and established character be brought into the institution to exert a counterinfluence for the right. The carrying out of such a plan would increase the running expenses of the Sanitarium, but it may be an effective means of guarding the fort and of shielding the youth who are here from the contaminating influences to which they are now exposed.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 10

    “Fathers and mothers are held responsible by God for the salvation of their children. After precious souls become obedient to the truth, have they no need of further watchcare? How difficult it is for the believing youth to maintain their consecration to God in the midst of influences so baleful as are those at the Battle Creek Sanitarium!”18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 11

    I have not exaggerated in the least the presentation made to me. Some God-fearing youth can stand the test; but it is not safe for us to permit them to remain unprotected.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 12

    The heavenly Instructor continued: “Parents, guardians, place your children in a training school where the surrounding influences are similar to those of the home school—a school in which the instructors will carry them forward from point to point, and in which the spiritual atmosphere will be a savor of life unto life, not of death unto death.”18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 13

    The words of warning and instruction that I have written in regard to our youth’s going to Battle Creek to receive a training for service in the Lord’s cause are not idle words. We are living in the midst of the perils of the last days. I am instructed to repeat to our brethren and sisters the warning and the exhortation that Paul sent to the church at Thessalonica:18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 14

    “The mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming: even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie; that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 15

    “But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: whereunto He called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle. Now our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts, and establish you in every good word and work.” [2 Thessalonians 2:7-17.]18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 16

    In the days of the Israelites the parents were directed to gather their children into their houses with them and to strike the lintel of the doorpost with blood. And in the times in which we are living, it is unsafe to break down the barriers that the truth builds as a fortress about the Lord’s people. It is unsafe to think that our children may be permitted to associate with unbelievers as freely as with Christians. Whether or not our youth who have received wise instruction and training from godly parents will continue to be sanctified through the truth, depends largely upon the influences that they meet after leaving their homes. The characters of our children will be, to a large extent, in accordance with the teachings given them.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 17

    Every one is now on trial. Every one will be weighed in the balances of the sanctuary. Those who are fully trained for heaven will be with the heavenly family in the courts above. There is a class whose training has been such that they will be fitted for receiving punishment with the disobedient and the transgressors. Let us take these matters into consideration, and seriously reflect upon the nature of the impressions that will be left upon the susceptible minds of the youth that are being brought into daily association with the hundreds of worldly men and women who come to the Battle Creek Sanitarium.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 18

    This is the time when Satan’s deceptive power is exercised with intensity, not only upon the minds of inexperienced youth, but upon the minds of men and women of mature years. Men in positions of responsibility are in danger of changing leaders. This I know, because it has been plainly revealed to me. Even if Christ were in the Battle Creek Sanitarium in person, as He was upon this earth at the time of His first advent, He might not be able to win these men to stand on His side, where they could understand the terribly deceptive workings of satanic influences; else He never would have uttered the words: “Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works had been done in Tyre and Sidon, which have been done in you, they had a great while ago repented, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. But it shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the Judgment, than for you.” [Luke 10:13, 14.] From this Scripture we learn that there are those who place themselves in positions where they will be in such a state of resistance against holy influences, that even the Word of truth and the pleadings of Christ Jesus do not effect their conversion.18LtMs, Ms 155, 1903, par. 19

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