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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 18 (1903) - Contents
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    Lt 218, 1903

    Wessels, Andrew

    “Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

    October 19, 1903

    Portions of this letter are published in SpTB #18 9.

    Dear Brother Andrew Wessels,—

    While writing my former letter, I was interrupted and did not write all that I wished to.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 1

    Some years ago, I asked you for money, not as a gift, but as a loan. I do not know just what your circumstances are now, or whether you can spare any money, but I wish to ask you again if you will deposit with me, as with a bank, some of the means which the Lord has entrusted to you. I am willing to pay interest on whatever money you think you can spare.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 2

    I have been instructed in regard to the dangers with which you are surrounded. You have not appreciated the talent of means. You have expended money for self-gratification.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 3

    Recently in the night seasons a scene passed before me in which I saw you, Henry and his wife, and other members of the Wessels family. With great tenderness, the words were spoken to you, “Young man, to you, Christ’s purchased possession, the Lord has entrusted means, not as a snare and a temptation, but to be used in His service. If wisely invested, your money will be a great help in carrying forward the work of God in needy fields. The Lord has been proving you to see whether you will act as a faithful steward or whether you will use His entrusted talents for self-gratification.” Then the question was asked, “How much of your money have you set aside as the Lord’s portion, to be used in His service?”18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 4

    Do not put your money into a bag with holes. Do not yield to the temptation to spend it for self-gratification. Invest it in the cause of God. You will gain no real satisfaction by using for self-pleasing the means that have been entrusted to you.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 5

    You need not give recklessly, but by investing wisely, you may do much to help forward the work of God. The cause of God is in need of every dollar that you can spare. There are many places where money is greatly needed to help—places which the Lord desires to see provided with facilities for the proclamation of the truth for this time.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 6

    The Lord has plainly specified that in Nashville, memorials for Him should be erected. A sanitarium is needed in that place, and a school should be established there.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 7

    Just now our work is being established in Washington, the capital of the United States. Our printing office has been moved to that place, and a sanitarium must soon be erected there. This is to be, not a mammoth institution, but a plain, substantial building. Means is required for these enterprises. And in many places where the truth is gaining a foothold, and churches are being raised up, money is needed.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 8

    The Lord’s money is not entrusted to you that you may have a good time with wild, reckless companions. The time is coming when God will call for the talents entrusted to you and for the increase that you may now gain by trading wisely upon them. Will you not seek for the commendation given in the parable to the servant who, when called to give account of his stewardship, was able to say to his Master, “Lord, thy pound hath gained five pounds”? [Luke 19:18.] Will you not, my brother see what you can do for your Master in returning to Him His own?18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 9

    Let me suggest a plan that, if followed, will be a blessing to you and to all who will act a part in it. Write out a pledge to be signed by those who will promise to abstain from some harmful or selfish indulgence, and give to the Lord the money thus saved.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 10

    First sign this pledge yourself, then take it to your companions. Frankly tell them your determination to love and serve the Lord. Say to them, “My friends, we are stewards of the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave His life for us, that we may have a home in His kingdom.” Read to them the words, “Ye are not your own. For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” [1 Corinthians 6:19, 20.] Tell them of the gospel medical missionary work to be established in Washington, and ask them to unite with you in denying self to help this worthy enterprise. Tell them that you are determined not to squander another penny of the Lord’s money.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 11

    I do not ask you to do this for my sake, but for Christ’s sake. I am instructed by One who gave His life for you that this work of self-denial and self-sacrifice will be a great blessing both to you and to those who will join with you. This plan has been presented to me by the Lord. Christ invites you to invite others to place their name to the total abstinence pledge. I am bidden to tell you that you may be a missionary agent for God in collecting for Him money that would otherwise be wasted in selfish indulgences, which weaken physical, mental, and moral power.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 12

    Though God is in heaven, and you upon earth, yet He notices your every act. Have you not, my dear young friend, wasted much of the Lord’s goods and encouraged others to waste their money? Suppose you try to reckon up the amount of money you have spent in such a way as to benefit no one, spent carelessly and for self-gratification.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 13

    It is time for you to use your influence aright. Will you not disappoint the enemy and glorify God. Will you not refrain from selfish indulgences, setting aside for the Lord the sum that you are tempted to use in self-gratification? Try this for one year. By denying yourself of harmful luxuries, you will improve your physical condition and glorify God. And the influence of your example and your words will lead others to deny self. If it is seen that you are decidedly in earnest, some will give up their expensive, health-destroying indulgences and co-operate with you. God will incline their hearts to return to Him that which in the past they have used in extravagance and foolish indulgences.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 14

    Bear in mind that by investing your money in the work of God, you are simply returning to your Saviour that which is His own. And you are laying up treasure in heaven beside the throne of God. Christ has given His life for you that you might have the privilege of becoming a member of the royal family, a child of the heavenly King. “As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name.” [John 1:12.] Christ became poor in this world’s goods, that you might inherit eternal riches. Put your money out to usury for the Master. Will you not return to the Lord that which is His own? Give yourself without reserve to the Lord Jesus, and as you seek to do His will, your life will be governed by new motives.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 15

    Let us be rich in faith. Talk to your brothers about the work I have mentioned, and see if they will not help you. Lead out yourself, and God will co-operate with you. You may ask help from any one you please, whether a church member or not. You may present your pledge to wealthy men, telling that a statement of how this money is used will be printed. How much more satisfaction is gained by spending money in the Lord’s work than in self-indulgence! Will not some who have squandered time and money, simply for the purpose of having a good time, now see what they can do to help forward the work of God in Washington and in Nashville, where as yet no buildings have been erected as memorials for God?18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 16

    I am in earnest about this matter. I shall be so thankful if you will act as the Lord’s appointed agent. If you will stand on the Lord’s side, faithful and true in precept and example, you may do a noble work.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 17

    If you desire, you may make me your agent in this country. I will be thankful to receive a monthly report of how you are getting on and such sums as you may collect for the work in Washington. I will keep an account of all money thus received.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 18

    I have not mentioned this matter to any one else. I would like to see you lead out in organizing a Benevolent Society such as I have outlined. I am going to trust this enterprise with you, Andrew, and ask you to do this noble work for the Master, and to do it heartily as unto the Lord.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 19

    I have done all I could to help the cause of God with my means. I am paying interest on twenty thousand dollars, all of which I have invested in the work of God. And I shall continue to do all in my power to help to forward His work.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 20

    I wish you could break up the associations you have formed in South Africa, give yourself unreservedly to the work of God, and come with your brother John to this country. We should be glad to have you take hold of some part of the work in Washington, D.C.18LtMs, Lt 218, 1903, par. 21

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