MY DEAR SIR:MILLENNIAL DAWN was introduced to me by some of its opponents; and after spending about nine months endeavoring to prove its teaching to be wrong, I came to the conclusion that it is perfectly scriptural. I have since joined a small class we have near here [See letter of Bro. Townsend in last TOWER], and we meet every Sunday and Tuesday, with a view to learning from the Bible the "present" truth.
I heartily thank our Father for the truths he has been pleased to publish through yourself, and my earnest prayer is that as each of us comes more fully into the light, we may realize the more our responsibility as "bondservants" of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, through whom alone is possible our acceptance. May we live every day as in his presence. Yours in the one faith,
GENTLEMEN:I take pleasure in availing myself of the offer made in one of your excellent tracts, which found its way into my hands, and request your generosity to send me "A Reply to Ingersoll" and whatever other tracts you believe would be beneficial to one who has been driven into skepticism by the pernicious teachings of orthodoxy; assured that he will take pains to spread the truth wherever he can, as fast as he can get hold of it himself.
DEAR BROTHER:A Brother recently picked up, among the rubbish of the freight room of a railway station, an old, well-worn copy of a book, entitled MILLENNIAL DAWN. He read it with increasing interest, and then handed it to me with the request that I read it and get the other volumes of the series. I have only glanced over the volume, but find many things that are in accord with my own ideas of God's Plan of Redemption, and hence am the more anxious to secure the entire series. Please send me your catalogue, and oblige, Fraternally yours,
DEAR BRO. RUSSELL:Several months ago I decided to write, informing you of my appreciation of your labors and expressing my deep gratitude to you, as the instrument of the divine spirit, in my enlightenment in the blessed "harvest truth;" but though tardy in acknowledging my indebtedness, I trust you will believe that my appreciation and gratitude are not the less sincere.
Remarkable indeed is the change that has taken place in my life since reading MILLENNIAL DAWN. The world appears new, for "old things have passed away." It is only about a year since I left the nominal church, yet it seems like an age, so great is the disparity between my past and present beliefs.
Bro. Pearson (whose experience is similar) and I had been for about seven years local preachers in the Primitive Methodist denomination; but for some months prior to our leaving, we had been restless and dissatisfied. The hollowness of the religious life of the orthodox churches, the shallow thought, the assumed authority and the greed of many of its teachers had caused a feeling within us, which was sufficiently manifested to induce among our friends grave uneasiness concerning our spiritual welfare. The trend of our life undoubtedly was toward the so-called "liberal thought" of the day. Both of us, by nature ambitious, naturally sought to be in the advance guard of religious truth.
One doctrine that was a great factor in causing our dissatisfaction with orthodoxy, was that of "Hell." For some months before we left the Church we prided ourselves upon the fact that we never alluded to that place of eternal torture, except in a condemnatory tone, in any of our sermons. We could not prove that it was not taught in the Scriptures, yet we thought that somehow it must be untrue. At any rate, we did not believe in it, but instead made rapid progress toward Universalism. The climax was brought about by Bro. Pearson reading a Christadelphian work, which had been in his house for years. He passed it on to me, and I too, fell under its influence. To our minds, dissatisfied with the palpable errors of Orthodoxy, and unlearned in the true teaching of Scripture, there seemed no escape from its logic. But we were by no means satisfied, for our hearts craved something broader and kindlier than its narrow and harsh doctrines. We felt we could do nothing else than sever our connection with "Babylon." It cut us to the heart to do so, for to both of us the Church had seemed a second home. Our friends and relations were its members. We had attained a position of some honor and influence in connection therewith. We were besought not to leave. It was a dark trial to leave the church of our fathers; it was a dark trial to be forced to believe in the doctrines of Christadelphianism. We sought to escape from its domination, we held interviews with several gentlemen representing sects who made professions of having come out of the "Churches." It was of no avail. The only result of the interviews was to make us wonder why they made so much noise about coming out; for on almost all, if not all, fundamental points their beliefs were marvelously alike. But after a few weeks of great trouble we met Bro. Pickworth, previously connected with the same church, who lent us the DAWNS and one or two numbers of the TOWER. Our darkness was changed to light: we felt that we had obtained that for which our hearts had so long been hungering. What wonderful things they have brought to light from the Scriptures! I cannot sufficiently [R1756 : page 12] praise the dear Lord.
After two or three months' study of the "harvest truth," we commenced preaching services in the town hall. It has been an uphill work. Our experience has brought us to concur heartily in the belief expressed in a recent TOWERthat the most effective factor in spreading the truth is the printed page. I enclose order for two Pounds. Please send me the value in DAWNS, also some copies of that excellent tract, "Do you know?" and any others you may deem suitable.
Personally, I have received much needed light on God's precious promises, and have also had my faith in the same greatly increased by reading the TOWER. And I wish to do what I can towards sending the truth to friends, so take this means, as I have already supplied them with DAWN.
I also take this opportunity of extending to you my heartfelt gratitude for the comfort and hope that God's message through your books has established within me. Have read and re-read the volumes with increased pleasure and profit. God's plans seem more reasonable and harmonious to me now than ever before. And yet I feel there is much more I need to learn. Received much assistance over rough places from dear friend Bohnet.
GENTLEMEN:A friend loaned me the three volumes of MILLENNIAL DAWN, and I am so well pleased with them (I not being a member of any religious sect nor an attendant at any religious meetings) that I want to own it myself, and read it again, and then induce other of my non-religious friends to read it. It seems to touch a chord in my nature that no other religious work ever did, and it has induced me also to read the Bible and with a better understanding than ever before.
I wish all could derive as much pleasure from MILLENNIAL DAWN as I have. I am trying to be an "Israelite indeed." And in course of time, when I have mastered their contents, it will give me pleasure to declare in public what I shall gain from those books. May the Lord bless you all. Your obedient servant, G. L.