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DEAR BROTHER IN CHRIST:—I must say that I have been surprised, delighted and astonished beyond measure at the truth revealed in your tract on hell. Oh, how I have been deluded by the traditions of men! How I have misrepresented and traduced God in preaching such a doctrine.
I have been outside of all sects and systems of men for years, yet bound by the traditions of men, when I thought myself free. May he, the spirit of truth, guide me quickly into his perfect light.
I would be pleased to circulate any literature on these subjects that you have for free distribution in this dark town in which I live, and will send you my subscription for ZION’S WATCH TOWER as soon as I am able.
Yours in Christ,
I. W. HAMMOND.
TOWER PUBLISHING CO.:—Through the Christian kindness of my brother I have been furnished VOLS. I., II. and III. of MILLENNIAL DAWN. How blind and stiff-necked I have been, I can hardly tell. After reading the first volume I was not at all convinced, but through courtesy to my brother I re-read it, the second time comparing references carefully. Then I commenced at Isaiah’s prophecy, and read all the prophets and the New Testament through. And altho I had read the same many times, I was surprised at what I found there, that I had never seen before. Five years ago I felt my ignorance of the Word of God, not being able to “rightly divide the word of truth,” so I sought the Lord, pleading that promise, “If any lack wisdom, let him ask of God, who giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not.” And how wonderfully he has answered my prayers! I am now feasting on the hidden manna.
Yesterday I stepped out of the ship [the nominal church—ED.], alone on the troubled sea. For a little while I felt as if I was sinking, when I heard, by faith, “Oh thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt.”
MRS. S. C. SMITH.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—We rejoice in the truth. Our pet doctrines, immortality of the soul, everlasting torment, triune God, have been exchanged for the pure gold. Now we can do nothing against the truth, but feel it our reasonable service to do all we can for the truth.
Silver and gold we have not; but such as we have, our time, testimony and influence to serve the truth to others, we give. We appreciate your offer very much, in sending us tracts for free distribution, as it opens the way to have a little talk and then leave the silent messenger with them (the people). They will read the tract, but cannot argue with it. The tract entitled “The Wages of Sin” proved a great blessing to me. I
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marked it well, and accompanied with a long letter sent the same to a friend.
I have learned to appreciate this kind of reading matter so much, because of the glorious light it has brought me—”glad tidings of great joy.” Blessed be God, I have learned to love him better, because I know him better and his wonderful plan; in fact it has brought me into harmony as a co-worker with him, and I am able to understand and willingly do the work he has for me to do in this harvest time.
A strong sectarian spirit prevails in this place. Something that will strike at the root of this evil with the many false doctrines and teachings of the popular denominations seems to be one thing needful. You may judge as to what tracts would suit, and I will faithfully distribute the same.
We shall be glad to take up the colporteur work and do what we can along that line. Will let you know when we are ready to take up that work. We know much good is accomplished in that way.
Yours in the love of God and the fellowship of the one spirit,
P. J. SHOQUIST.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—Allow me to address you a few lines concerning the effect of your work, the I., II. and III. volumes of MILLENNIAL DAWN, upon me. It found me through a friend in a creed bed. And reading and examining it I found the bed too short. I was acting as superintendent of a Sunday School at the time, and I resigned and withdrew from the Evangelical Association; not without a church meeting, however.
I was able to get a great deal of truth before them, and the minister, having more knowledge of the Scriptures than the rest, and I having given him my reason for withdrawing before the meeting, confessed to the truth privately, but simply said he would have to defend the discipline or he could not preach. He lacked a love and appreciation of the truth. He could not condemn and did not do so, but by his silence allowed the members to condemn the truth.
This step cost me the friendship of all my neighbors for a time, but they have shown every respect since, tho the minister keeps them so guarded that I cannot get them to read MILLENNIAL DAWN and examine the truth for themselves.
I am so thankful to God for his great mercy to me in revealing this truth to me. Oh! I desire strength to fight the good fight of faith to the end. I pray God to be with you in his might in strengthening you in spreading the truth, and may the Lord reward you for your good work, as no one else is able to bless. Pray for me.
Yours in Christ,
L. L. PARNEY.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—I take the liberty of writing to thank you for your very clear, forcible, logical, convincing and satisfactory presentation of the truth in your three volumes of MILLENNIAL DAWN. Altho I have been acquainted with the Word of God from childhood, I never knew so much of my heavenly Father’s glorious provision for our fallen race as I have learned since reading your valuable works. While I am surprised and ashamed that for so many years I knew nothing of what is so clearly pointed out in God’s Word, I feel very thankful that at eventide it is light. Praise the Lord for clearly revealing his glorious purposes, which till lately were hidden from me. I long to tell others the blessed tidings that gladden my heart. Glory to God, my Savior is here; Christ, the divine Bridegroom is present.
Since I have seen something of the Millennial Dawn, I have been trying to point others to its glorious light. I have conversed about it whenever I had an opportunity, and lent DAWNS to any who were willing to read them. Last May I publicly left the Methodist church of which I had been a member from my youth. All our family were members of that church, but two of them have left because they are believers in the great truths you teach. Our youngest son, who lives at M., left before I did. He is very diligent and earnest in his efforts to spread the light.
The people here are strongly prejudiced against what they think are new doctrines. One of them told me he wanted to die in the same faith as his fathers. I told him that if all his forefathers had been of his opinion they would have been Roman Catholics, and farther back they were heathen. One man to whom I lent the DAWNS acknowledged that no one could disprove them, but said that it was hard to give up opinions that had been instilled into the mind in childhood. Some are so prejudiced that they will not read the books at all. We never tire of reading them and the TOWERS over and over again.
My husband joins with me in kind regards to yourself and Sister Russell. May the Lord bless you abundantly in your great work.
Your Sister in Christ,
MRS. ELIZABETH HALL.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—I bless God for the MILLENNIAL DAWN, for it has removed all doubts and fears and revealed to me the perfect plan of God for the redemption of man, and I have since reading it made a personal acquaintance with my Savior, our Lord Jesus Christ, and he is now ruling supreme in my heart, and I am looking for his coming [the full establishment of his Kingdom?] when I shall see him as he is and be like him. O, bless the Lord all my soul!
I was groping in darkness, but I was seeking after truth, and hungering and thirsting after righteousness, and bless God he has filled me and given me the Comforter, who he has promised shall abide with me forever.
I will tell you how the DAWN happened to fall into my hands. One day in looking over the books in the Public Library, under the head of Religion, I saw this book, and in scanning its pages I thought it was just what I wanted, so I took it home and read it on three different occasions, and it has been a great blessing to me; and not only to me, but I showed it to a friend of mine who had almost fallen into infidelity, and was attending meetings of a club which is composed of Anarchists, Communists and Socialists, and proffered to believe in their teachings; but praise God, he is now interested in the truth, and my prayer is that the Lord will manifest himself to him that he may make a personal acquaintance with Him and accept the ransom provided for all who will accept its benefits.
Yours in Christ,
— August 1, 1897 —