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TO THE READERS OF THE WATCH TOWER
BELOVED: It is fitting that new recruits should cheer, if nothing else presents that they can do. It is well that overcomers should continue to use the „word of their testimony.” In the true life of faith there must be habitual obedience to the revealed will of God. The just shall live by faith. To the one that lives by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God, it should not appear strange that God should present objects of faith one by one, and not all at once; neither should we stumble if our faith meets with higher truths than those first presented. Faith, like muscular organs, is strengthened by use—the whole gymnasium is open to the athlete; he would spurn the gentle and easy exercises of the invalids. But how often we rebel when this principle is used in the acts of faith: It is trying to the man who has arrived at the justified plane to be told about the entire consecration demanded of the „overcomer.” For a week I have been instructed in the things of the Kingdom especially referring to the presence of Christ doing the separating work preparatory to the marriage. And most joyfully do I receive these teachings.
With shame I record that for three days I rejected these truths, almost wishing they were not scriptural and the very truth of God, instead of joyfully welcoming them with grateful heart. Following closely came another trial of faith and measure of my obedience and consecration, when I, as one of God’s stewards, was urged to do the work of a steward and deal out these truths exactly in the measure of my ability to proclaim them. This meant for me the preaching service; the proclamation of truths so unwelcome to many up and down the land everywhere and always.
I ask pardon from the blessed Master—Christ Jesus, that I ever hesitated to accept His place in true humility, and the obedience of faith. I bring, not a parade of the Christianizing and civilizing elements to elevate and liberalize the world, and thus make it fit for a coming Messiah; but we proclaim: „The times of restitution spoken of by all the holy prophets since the world began”—the glorious manifestation of the sons of God, now so near. Glorious body of Christ, take courage. „Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in prayers to God for me; that I may be delivered from them that do not believe in Judea (the nominal church), and my service that I have for Jerusalem the Bride) may be accepted of all the saints.” Rom. 15:30,31.
Rejoicing in the light shining from the present one. J. B. A.
It gives me pleasure to thus introduce to the readers of the WATCH TOWER one whom we have recently come to know as a very dear saint—a brother in Christ. We first became acquainted about one year ago and his interest has been growing in the precious truths advocated in the TOWER. Again visiting this city, we have had very pleasant and profitable interchanges on the all important themes—the presence, the „high calling” and the „narrow way” of entire consecration by which it may be reached.
Our brother has concluded as the above letter indicates to give all that he has of time, reputation and ability for the Pearl of great price, the „Crown of life,”—immortality and joint-heirship. He leaves a profitable and increasing business paying about $1,500
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a year as well as other things—this might be considered a great deal to give but it is really nothing—nothing compared to the privilege of being an Ambassador and mouth-piece of the King of kings; nothing compared with the privilege of telling the „Glad tidings of great joy which shall be to all people” causing men to know and love God and their Redeemer and refreshing the hearts of the Saints; nothing compared to the great riches and glory and honor promised of God to those who walk in Jesus’ footsteps.
Bro. Robert Bailey, of Michigan, has also gone forth a proclaimer of the same „Glad tidings” entirely consecrated to the Lord and his work. He was with us as well as Bro. Sunderlin, of N.Y., (who has been in the work for three months) at the above mentioned conference. We trust that the studies of those days were profitable to each of us. May the Lord go with, and bless these brethren by using them abundantly in his service.
Some of them may call upon you in the course of their travels; we bespeak for them your kindest and warmest reception. In this connection it may be of cheer to some of you to know that the Lord is stirring up the depths of the hearts of his consecrated children and each seems desirous of doing what he can. Brother McGrannor, of Pennsylvania, has also gone forth recently to give his entire time and labor in the „harvest” field; may his labors also be crowned with such success as may seem good to the Lord of the harvest and gain finally the „Well done good and faithful servant, thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joys of the Lord.”
Many other evidences less notable but equally acceptable to the Lord could be mentioned showing the power of truth to consecrate and separate from everything and to use humble efforts for the glory of our King, but these will suffice. Now let me ask—are there others who as stewards (not bankers to pay when demanded but stewards) possessing talents, time, etc., consecrated to God, which he entrusts to them to be used in his service: are there more such who want to render to the Lord his own?—[EDITOR.]
— June, 1881 —