Having just finished carefully reading the recent "Watch Tower," and with profit comparing spiritual things in them with the spiritual things contained in the Book (I Cor. 2:13); and having found much food, both milk and meat (Heb. 5:12-14), I discovered among the papers in the hotel in Mt. Jewett, the March, 1902, number of "World Wide Missions," a twenty page monthly, now in its fourteenth year, and which from its attractive appearance bade fair to furnish an appetizing dessert to the full meal just partaken. But I studied its aggressive frontispiece and turned its pages in disappointment. At her bare cupboard Mother Hubbard's poor dog was equally fortunate; no food was there, not even a discussion of the Sunday School lesson.
What it did contain was five portraits of as many Reverend gentlemen, and two groups of missionary subjects; ninety-four articles of various lengths concerning meetings, work, services, revivals, conferences, discipline, rum and opium, church erection, impecunious missions, money, Buddhist opposition, addresses, colleges, health and food, Epworth League, charcoal, one short poem, New England, China and war, travels, Africa, Europe, Mexico, Korea, Porto Rico, Chicago, self-denial, charity, mission-giving, benevolence and six complimentary notices and six personals; it believes they are just on the eve of success in China, and that by proper effort the world will be evangelized during the twentieth century. There was much regarding persons and things, in which the first person, singular and plural, predominated; and finally, six and one-half of its twenty pages were devoted to thirty-eight miscellaneous and illy selected advertisements.
The brethren who edit the paper seem full of zeal; but, alas! it does not appear to be according to knowledge (Rom. 10:2). There was not a single Scripture reference, nor did I notice any Scripture quotations. They were very anxious to prevent the use of profanity, liquor, opium and tobacco, but the coarser sins are not mentioned, while the more refined, as envy, lust, gossip, are overlooked. Meekness is mentioned approvingly, as an adjunct to benevolence, and for the benefit of the missions' coffers; but love, joy, peace (Gal. 5:22,23) receive little attention. "Zions Watch Tower," on the contrary, contains of Scripture references nearly a thousand a year, and of quotations several times as many.
But if we are more favored by the light now due and shining upon us from the pages of the Bible, the "Dawns" and the "Towers," we have nothing of which to boast, nothing that we have not received (I Cor. 4:7); and we may well remember with fear that our duties and obligations increase as we advance from opportunity to knowledge, and from knowledge to still farther opportunity. Will you not pray for me, dear brother, as I do daily for you, that this wonderful glorious opportunity and light may not have come to us in vain.
Dear Brother:From the amount of publishing that you are doing, it is quite evident that your time must be fully occupied. On this account I have long hesitated to trouble you with my difficulties and hindrances to advancement in present truth. About one and a half years ago I received my first number of "Watch Tower," which I perused with pleasure and profit. Other numbers followed full of good Bible teaching.
I read the first volume of "Dawn" with much interest, and thought I had now found what I had been seeking for,a substitute for the prevailing delusions of the day. I read and reread it and talked as much as I read, and gave to friends four or five copies. I then took up the succeeding volumes. I soon began to find things so contrary to my preconceived notions that I laid them aside and read volume V, which proved really "meat in due season." I have since been reading the three volumes laid aside and making some advancement. And now comes "Tower," March 15, containing the very subject I am stumbling over. I am reading them carefully and prayerfully, and hope to find the truth. Your effort to publish the truth is commendable.