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HUMAN OR SPIRITUAL
A LETTER AND ITS ANSWER
Red Oak, Sept. 28, 1885.
MY DEAR MRS. RUSSELL: It hardly seems right to trouble you again with my questions, but you and Mr. Russell have helped me so often perhaps you will once more. I feel sure the teaching of the WATCH TOWER is true. I would not go back to the old way of trying to believe for anything. I know that God, for Christ’s sake, has forgiven my sins. I believe I have no will of my own; at least I try not to have. It seems right and just that some should inherit divine life. I realize that for others. But do you think it wicked when I tell you that to be a perfect human being is all I can desire for myself? To have my father and friends who are gone, back again; to have sin blotted out of the world; never to be sick or know sorrow of any kind; to live as God intended his children to live. It is almost more than I can bear to think of. Anything beyond or better is as unreal to me as the thoughts of heaven used to be when I was taught that some time we would go there. Is it wrong for me to feel so, and are there not others who feel the same way? Surely I am not the only one. I am afraid to settle down and take all the comfort I can, for fear I have neglected something. Can you help me? Yours truly, __________.
MY DEAR FRIEND: With reference to your question I would say that if you never started for the great prize of our high calling—the divine nature—then you are perfectly right in looking for the glory and perfection of human nature, and that will indeed be a glorious and satisfying portion. Those who made an entire consecration within the acceptable time, or the time when they were acceptable as LIVING SACRIFICES, which time we believe ended with the fall of 1881, should not turn back. If they offered themselves unreservedly to God within that time, they were accepted of him and sealed with the spirit of adoption, which enables them to appreciate every item of truth relative to their new inheritance—the spiritual—the Divine nature which they desire and long for above every thing else. God will never fail to fulfill his part of the covenant if we keep our part of the contract—to sacrifice our human nature and all that belongs to it.
But if such a one who has covenanted to sacrifice all—even unto death—and who has received the spirit of adoption—the earnest of his divine inheritance—turns away from it and despising his covenant, seeks to regain and attain the perfection of the human nature, he will surely fail and lose both—all. If such a one seeks to save his life he will lose it; but, if according to his covenant he loses it, gives it up, sacrifices it, he will save his life as a „new creature” spiritual.
If, however, your consecration has been since that time, then the earthly glory is for you, and you may begin at once to conform to the principles of the new heavenly kingdom now being set up, though the world is not yet aware of it. You may begin at once to grow up toward perfection as a human being.
Now, I judge you can tell just where you stand. If you ever started for the heavenly glory and kingdom, and received the seal of adoption, I beseech you turn not back—neither to the right hand nor to the left; but press on and make your election sure by fulfilling your covenant. But if yours is the earthly inheritance, strive to conform as fully as possible to the will and plans of God. Those first and foremost to recognize the new kingdom and to conform to its laws of love and justice, will be first blessed by it.
Yours rejoicing in the glorious prospect for both the spiritual and fleshly sons of God.
Many have sung „I want to be an Angel,” etc., who want nothing more than, that they preferred to be angels in heaven, to going to a place of torture, because they have been taught that their lot must be one or the other.
MRS. C. T. RUSSELL.
— December, 1885 —