DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—I have been thinking that perhaps I ought to be better known to you, and that I have not the advantage of that spiritual sympathy which so builds up the brethren who neglect not the assembling of themselves together, which bodily assembling has now, to some of us, to be substituted by letters. I saw you and heard you at the meeting in April, and perhaps you will recall me personally. I had then many, many things I wanted to talk with you about, but I found it impossible to wait over until you would have leisure. But how I was blessed and strengthened by that meeting! I have been a careful reader of the WATCH TOWER and both volumes of "DAWN," and the spirit of that assembly and the inspiration of the meeting—the seeing, for the first time, faces of men and women who believe as I do and whose hope was also my hope—was indeed blessed. I know that you are very busy with that which the Master has intrusted to your hand, and I write this letter, knowing that occasional words of sympathy and love are encouraging, and that a word from me may help to build you up. I cannot tell you now what the words have done for me, which the Master has spoken by you through the TOWER and DAWN. For several years I was in the pastorate of the M.E. Church and a member of the Upper Iowa Conference. The study of the Bible took Methodism out of me long before I knew of your writings. I associated a few months with the Campbellites; but they were not the people my heart yearned for, and their doctrines and practices were out of harmony with THE WORD. I turned my attention to the Plymouth Brethren—read their literature, but they are the worst "hide-bound" of any, though they do have some truth and are zealous for the atonement.
To one looking at me from the outside only, I would seem to be a wanderer, having [R1237 : page 8] had little stability, having had no fixed home since leaving the M.E. Church. But God knows differently, and I am persuaded that you also can understand how that a man whose daily prayer was, "O! send out thy light and thy truth, and let them lead me," would become very peculiar in the eyes of those who are asleep in Zion. I have had some extremely painful experiences which would not have fallen upon me had I remained a pastor in the Church. But I am comforted as was our brother Paul, that these light afflictions work out for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. And since I have learned to walk in the light as he is in the light, I have also grasped the meaning of Phil. 4:7,
I have seven children, none of them yet self-supporting, and as my salary stopped when I stopped preaching for the people, I have had enough to do to feed and clothe them. I have earnestly desired to be at work wholly in the Gospel, but the care of my family has tied me to my business, but my heart was all the time with the Lord.
DEAR SISTER RUSSELL:—Although it has been quite a long time since the meeting at Allegheny, which all enjoyed so much, I thought you might be pleased to know of the blessed effect of that meeting upon some who were not there. My husband came home so full of the Holy Spirit that I immediately realized my need of a deeper work in my heart. He, through the Holy Spirit, brought me to see what a blessed privilege I had of making a complete consecration, and strange as it may be, I have been until now trying to feel the evidence that I was accepted. I did not receive the evidence as long as I was expecting it, but just as I determined to stand on his promises without a sensible evidence, then the peace that passeth all understanding filled my soul, and he has made me to rejoice in his mighty love.
My prayers are ever with you, and all the Lord's children. Oh! how sweet it is to feel his presence and protecting care. I am so glad that the messengers ever found us, and now I feel like carrying the glad tidings to some others of the Lord's children who are still in Egyptian darkness.
DEAR BROTHER AND SISTER RUSSELL:—Indeed it is a pleasant surprise that our blessed Lord has helped you to prepare a volume of poems and hymns for us hungering souls, and I have so much wanted something of the kind from you, but when I was writing I could not think to ask it. Praise the Lord, his guidance is so wonderful, faithful and plain.
The bit of history entitled Harvest Gathering and Sifting is very interesting and satisfactory to me; 'tis no offence, but with thankfulness I read and re-read. May the Lord continue his help in the glorious work to his willing and obedient servants.
DEAR WATCH TOWER:—Enclosed please find $1.50 for ten volumes of MILLENNIAL DAWN. Every one wants both volumes, and the third also as soon as it is out. All that I have sold to thus far want the third volume—some of those that have already read the first and second are quite impatient for the third. I am not able to canvass for MILLENNIAL DAWN, but will recommend and sell it as I have opportunity. I send enclosed a letter from a friend, which speaks for itself. Please send the books in paper cover without delay. Mrs. H. B. LUCAS.
MY DEAR FRIEND:—I have read and I am now re-reading "MILLENNIAL DAWN." It is not my own book, I borrowed it from a party who got it through you. I now want it for myself, for it is a "book to keep," to study and ponder. I have studied the Bible more or less from childhood, and many things of course were very plain; but many more very much hidden in mystery. This book is indeed a "helping hand." The Bible opens up grandly in the light of unfolding prophecy. I never felt such a grand sweep of happiness and perfect peace enwrap my whole being as while I have been reading this author's ideas. They seem sound. I am going through more slowly this time, with the Bible in my hand. The first time I was too much entranced to stop to hunt quotations. I rushed on and on at full gallop. Once the book fell on my lap and while the tears were actually drenching my face, I began singing the blessed old hymn,
Blessing and glory and honor and praise belong to him forever. I am living in a new world; even old things have become new. I never doubted God's love, nor wavered in my faith, but I went on blindly, as it were, believing all would come out right. But the view I have now is so much broader and grander and fuller of love than I could ever see before. I thought for many years that we were near the end of the gospel age, but I counted differently and made it farther off than this author. Surely, the "dawning" is very near, if we are not actually in it. I would love to talk with you of these things. Can't you come up and spend a few days? We can have all the time to talk. I want a copy of these books and the third volume too. Can you give me any information, or can you get it for me? Are you agent for them? I must have them!
TOWER PUBLISHING CO.:—Mr. C. K. L., a friend of mine, came into my office and said that no money could pay for the benefit he had received from the truth contained in the DAWN, Vol. I., and handed me $20.00 which I inclose herein, and requested me to purchase DAWNS and distribute them. Please send me the DAWNS, Vol. I., to that amount, including two or three of Vol. II.
DEAR BROTHER AND SISTER RUSSELL:—I cannot refrain from writing you—your articles in the last TOWER: "Perils Among False Brethren," "Harvest Gathering and Siftings" and "Sifting the Wheat," were so very helpful and timely to me and also to others, I desire you to know how highly they are appreciated.
You perhaps know that Brother__________ has, at times, had his faith in the ransom nearly shipwrecked by Mr. Adams' theories, but now he is satisfied, and says he will work harder for the Master than he has ever before in spreading the truth.
Your plain, pointed history was very helpful. I have read the articles referred to in the May TOWER three times and see very plainly the leading of the Divine Master. I did not before understand the travail that gave birth to "Tabernacle and its Teachings." As soon as I studied it, I was sure its origin was divine. So this was the key that opened up all the dark things, the hidden things, in the day of the Lord's preparation. May God still keep you where he can use you for his work—his great work. May self be crucified, and only Christ appear.
Many will yet fall. One other we had supposed to be with us has gone back to man's inherent immortality. Who shall be able to stand? I desire to work along with you, helping, never hindering, in the great harvest work, now calling for every willing hand.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—For the enclosed have the kindness to mail to my address one copy each of the first and second volumes of MILLENNIAL DAWN. These are "perilous times"—the "sifting" process continues and it is our desire to walk in the light, God helping us.
There are only three of us here who are striving to enter in at the straight gate, and we are regarded as "peculiar" among the professed church people. Pray for us, that our running may not be in vain. Will you kindly mail a copy of the May number of the TOWER, prominently marking the article: "Harvest Gathering and Siftings" to Mr.__________. This man, once in the way, may possibly not have gone so far back as to reach "outer darkness."
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—The Bibles and Testaments came, and we are very thankful to have them. It is wonderful how our Heavenly Father answers prayer. We were badly served by the American Bible Society, while at Walla Walla. We could have supplied many DAWN readers there with Bibles, and attempted to negotiate with that concern to supply the demand, not expecting any remuneration for our trouble. Would they do this? No, it would seem as though they preferred that those people be without the bread of life, than to fill any orders for us, because, they said, "You are going over the country selling the book, MILLENNIAL DAWN." Did we drop the matter here? No; we did just as we have learned to do with all other things—we took it to the Lord in prayer. And shortly we received the sample from you with prices so very cheap for such beautiful Bibles and Testaments. We praise his holy name, and are thankful for such a wonderful manifestation of God's mercy, love and readiness in giving us whatsoever we ask. Enclosed you will find money order and a small order for books. Yours with greeting to all in Christ the Lord, H. H. HYATT.
MY DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—Many thanks for your warning that although "the morning cometh"—"also the night" or what may be called the increased darkness preceding the morning. "It is always darkest just before day." As an evidence of the darkness—a would-be repetition of the dark ages—the following clipping from a paper dated May 31st, 1890, is a very fair illustration:—
"Bishop O'Farrell, of New Jersey, has announced in the churches of his diocese that he will not confirm any children who attend the public schools unless their parents can show good reasons for not sending them to the parochial schools."
With the political aspects, so incongruous, we have nothing to do. Apparently the Church and State will again be united, with the beautiful mother and her obedient and no longer protesting beautiful daughters at the head.
Let us now work while it is called to-day, for soon the night cometh (when the above prediction is verified) in which no man can work. Human agencies will then be unavailing and it will require the power of our Lord and his saints, no longer men, but spiritual beings, to do the work required.
TOWER TRACT SOCIETY, DEAR SIRS:—Nearly a year ago a little pink tract came into my possession some way, I have forgotten how. The title, "Calamities, and why God permits them," attracted my attention, as it was only a short time after the Johnstown calamity. I have always been a skeptic from childhood, and no amount of praying and trying to believe did me any good. Even when called on to die, as I supposed, I could not believe. Or perhaps I really believed, but could not get that peace described by Christians as so glorious. I have invested in all the books which I thought might cure me. I could not help but believe in evolution, to the exclusion of revelation, or even of divinity. Well, I laid the little pink tract on my table, thinking I would read it the first time I had time. I picked it up several times, but did not become interested enough to read it; but every time I overhauled my table and straightened up books and papers, etc., I found the little tract. How it always got back there I cannot tell, for I thought a dozen times that I had disposed of it. To-night I saw it on the table again. I opened it, got interested and found something I had never found before. Well, I cannot describe it, but I want to know more of Christ. Please send me the "Plan of the Ages," in paper. Would be glad if you would send me some more tracts of the kind I need. I will read and hand to others.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—Your letter came duly to hand, also the 100 DAWNS, Vol. I. My friend informs me from Sheffield that he has received the 50 DAWNS ordered, also. I should be glad if you would send me as soon as you can the remainder of the order, as I am out of the tracts, Protestants, Awake! The Lord willing, I purpose spending a week about the middle of next month at Keswick Holiness Convention. Many thousands of earnest Christians from all parts of Great Britain attend it, and I thought it would be a good opportunity for scattering some "Hail" and also selling DAWN. I was up there a few weeks ago and arranged with a bookseller to sell them for me and gave him one to read himself. So I enclose you L2 for 40 copies of Vol. I. and 20 copies of Vol. II.—colporteur rate, and I should be glad if you would for the remainder put in 2000 Arp Slips. I will get a small slip printed by this bookseller with his name and address and a few words of recommendation, and I may have a few large posters printed, and I trust by these means to sell a good many. I will take a lot more with me, to be ready should they sell well. The tracts, Protestants, Awake! kindly include, as they would do well to circulate freely with the Arp Slips.
I see by the May TOWER that you, like all God's saints, have had to buy the truth and pay for it. Well, praise the Lord! having paid the price we know some little of its value. But hallelujah! it is cheap at any price. Our experience during the past few years has been on the same lines. And all who love and serve God will have tribulation in this age; but they that know God put their trust in him. I have had to part from some of my former dearest friends, or rather they have taken themselves off and shun me as a heretic. But we can pray for them like our blessed Master who said, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." It has comforted me a good deal, since I have seen that with spiritual Israel, like fleshly Israel, "blindness in part hath happened to them." So I bear with them, knowing that the trial of my faith is precious in his sight; and by his grace I mean to run the race which he has set before us, following the footsteps of our blessed Redeemer.
My wife and sister-in-law, with the saints assembled here, join in warmest Christian love to yourself and dear wife and the saints that with you are looking for that blessed hope, the glorious revelation of our Savior, Jesus Christ. May God abundantly bless you.