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DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—Tho a subscriber to the WATCH TOWER I have never written you personally to tell you of the inestimable blessings I have derived from reading the MILLENNIAL DAWN series and the WATCH TOWER. O, the light, peace and joy that came to me! The riches of my Father’s precious Word are now inexpressible. And you, dear brother, are the blessed instrument the Lord has provided to bring about these blessings. I am happy to say that by his grace I am running for, or pressing toward, the mark for joint-heirship.
Your humble brother in the Lord,
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—I have been having quite an experience as a result of my attempts to teach the truth. As I have previously told you, I have a class of young people in Sunday school and have been teaching them along the lines of expositions given in the WATCH TOWER. This has brought down upon my head a spirit of opposition from the pastor and some others. They removed me as Superintendent of the Sunday school, and it was understood that I was to give up my class. I resigned the class, but the pupils would not have it so, so I am taking them along with me. I am finding the value of endeavoring to be “as wise as a serpent and as harmless as a dove,” and also that it is not wise to “cast pearls before swine.” I am trying to be more discreet and discriminating in handing out the truth, and find that everything must be done in the spirit of Christ if anything is to be accomplished.
The Lord has opened up opportunities for service where I least expected them. I have one family started in the DAWN study, and through them two other families are becoming interested. My experiences thus far seem to be that even among seemingly truth-loving people many are loath to accept any doctrines, except as they seem to be in harmony with their denominational tendencies. I thoroughly enjoy the WATCH TOWER, and was very glad to see in a recent number the article entitled, “Who were Those Saints?”
Sincerely yours in the Master’s service,
HENRY M. CAULKINS,—New York.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—For the last twelve years I have been a firm believer in the doctrines you teach. I have read VOL. I. of MILLENNIAL DAWN several times; also VOLS. II. and III. a number of times, and they have given me great consolation and comfort. All that I know of the plan of salvation I have learned from your writings. I was raised by strict Methodist parents, but all I learned from them only served to confuse and bewilder me, and to make me almost an unbeliever in the Bible as a divine revelation. After reading the DAWNS the fog was lifted from my mental vision, the crooked places were all made straight, and all was clear as noonday. May God continue to bless you and your work, is my prayer.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—I feel constrained to write and tell you how very much I enjoy and appreciate your presentations of the truth regarding God’s
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wonderful “plan of the ages.” My mother has read nearly everything you have written for nearly fourteen years, and has taught it to me, as fast as I would receive it; but until recently I have not taken the interest I should in trying to understand the plan, nor did I see the beauty in it I do now. Last March, during the revival at a Wesleyan Methodist Church near us, I was converted and joined that church, thinking that I had found a haven of rest for my weary feet. A few weeks afterwards mother laid VOL. V. of the MILLENNIAL DAWN in my lap, asking me to read certain parts of it. I put aside all the prejudices I had formerly felt for your books and began to read for myself. I was completely captivated, from the first, with the beauty and harmony of the truth as you presented it.
The more I read the more I became convinced of the folly of remaining in the organization I had just joined, especially as it makes such a specialty of teaching the God-dishonoring doctrine of eternal torment. Acting upon my convictions I withdrew from the church on May 14, after telling the pastor my reasons for doing so. He acted very reasonably—admitted that the church could not grant me fellowship unless I conformed to the creed. He, however, made it a point to warn his followers against MILLENNIAL DAWN. He said the author was a deep writer who mixed truth and error in such a manner that it appeared to be truth. I told him I believed it was all truth, for everything you said was based upon the Bible. I loaned him Vol. V., but I do not think he read it—”for fear of the Jews.”
Now I am free, thank God, to read anything you write, and my only regret is that I cannot recall the years of wasted opportunity—the time seems so short and I have so much to learn, for I am but a “babe” in the school of Christ. I am perfectly willing to consecrate my all to him; therefore, dear brother, I ask an interest in your prayers that I may be strengthened in love and faith and may become a true member of the “little flock,” if it be according to his will. Again let me thank you for leading me “out of the darkness into his marvelous light.” As I reflect on the Lord’s goodness my eyes fill with tears, and I long to shout, “Glory to God for his love, wisdom, justice and power!” I feel it needless to ask him to bless you, for he will surely bless the instrument through which he is dispensing the “meat in due season to the household of faith.” I beg that you will pardon my trespassing upon your valuable time. I believe I could write all day and never tell you half I feel. I will send you some money as the Lord prospers me. We are very poor, and I handle but little money, but I want to give you a little whenever I can.
Your sister in Christian love,
MINNIE R. BARNETT,—South Carolina.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—We continue giving thanks to our Heavenly Father for the unfailing supply of “meat in due season” that comes to us through your labors, nor do we forget the workers in our prayers. We realize that the famine is sore in the land and that darkness is rapidly settling down upon the people. How rapidly the truth is becoming vitiated by the flood of false doctrines; how completely people are losing the last vestige of the faith!
Brother Thompson is in town for a short visit, and we were very much pleased, indeed, with the last page in the June 1 TOWER. It is good to know the Pilgrims are busy spreading the truth; cheering to know there are so many places where Israelites indeed may be found. It helps to sustain our interest—makes us more patient to feel that the Lord is mindful of his own in this way; however isolated they may be, their “bread and water” is sure, spiritually and temporally.
With Christian love to yourself and those associated with you in the work, and making mention of you all in our prayers, Yours in the one faith,
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—Brother Draper has come and gone. I bade him adieu and God-speed yesterday, and trust his heart was rejoiced and comforted by our rejoicing in the glorious light of the truth. Our meetings were not large, but I feel safe in saying that there was an intense interest depicted on each countenance, and that all our little gathering and a few from outside were deeply impressed with all the meetings, which were held in our new hall.
On Sunday morning, at 10.30, about forty assembled at Balmy Beach (about 4 miles from the center of the city, many having to travel 6 to 7 miles) to witness the symbol of baptism in water. The morning was bright, cool, and very windy, causing quite a heavy rolling surf, which rather added to the interest of the occasion. Four sisters and five brothers were buried in the waves, thus showing forth to quite a large number of spectators on the beach their immersion into Christ’s death. Our little party was indeed a happy, joyous little band as we returned home, to assemble again at our hall at 3 P.M., and listen to our dear Brother Draper pour forth more of the precious things from the Holy Word.
At 7 P.M. our last meeting commenced, there being 88 or 90 in the hall, quite a number of the friends and acquaintances of the dear brothers and sisters being present, but very few strangers, and about 9.30 our feast of fat things came to an end for the time, and I think it would have been difficult to picture a more happy lot of faces than all wore; all were overjoyed at the precious things they had heard, and the words of comfort, exhortation and strength which came to us from our dear Brother. I feel that I am expressing the heart’s desire of our assembly when I say that all were deeply thankful to our Heavenly Father, to our dear Lord and Master, and also to you, dear Brother, and our dear Brother Draper for providing us with such good things. I pray God we may continue abounding in love, peace and joy in the Lord.
I must not close without mentioning one of the most interesting incidents of the meetings. A dear Brother, having come out from amongst the Jews (but quite a stranger to us at first), became deeply impressed with the “True Gospel.” He had been seeking rest amongst the sects, but had found little or none. One of his difficulties, and perhaps his chief one, was the Trinitarian doctrine, and his face beamed with delight when he learned we did not accept this. He was indeed hungering for the truth, and at the close of Saturday night’s meeting he came to me and expressed his desire to symbolize his consecration in water baptism, which he did on Sunday A.M. He is a most intelligent brother and withal so simple. He has already
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undergone much persecution for Christ’s sake, his wife and children being taken from him, as it were. As I understand it, they had their choice to remain with him or be cast out of the synagogue. He indeed seems to be an “Israelite indeed.” We (I need hardly say) are all much interested in this dear brother. Truly some, at least, are “looking upon Him whom they pierced, and mourning,” and yet their hearts rejoice to find Him whom they have waited for.
With much love from all the dear ones here, and a desire for your continued prayers for our stability in the faith,
Your servant in the Lord Jesus,
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DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—The article on “Patient Endurance,” in April 1 TOWER seemed most opportune, as we heard a number of our people speak of it particularly; and I may say it is most highly appreciated by myself. Indeed, dear Brother Russell, every number of the blessed TOWER seems fraught with the spiritual refreshment most needed at the time, and my heart is continually lifted in deep gratitude to our Father for the heavenly food furnished through your instrumentality. That you have been enabled to so empty yourself as to be filled with God’s precious messages so richly, is a cause of deep gratitude from all the household of faith. In reading over recently the first and second volumes of DAWN, I am astonished at the many things that had previously escaped me, or failed to leave their impression—probably through the pressure of worldly cares. The last three years have brought me riches of knowledge and experience, yet with them such an overwhelming sense of my utter unworthiness and incompetency that I would surely sink, but for clinging to the cross.
I ask your prayers that I may not receive the grace of God in vain, but forget the things that are behind, and press forward to the mark—with patient endurance.
With earnest desire for the continuation of His rich favors to you, and all needed strength, both physically and spiritually, and trusting in the merits of our great Redeemer,
I remain, yours with Christian love,
ALICE E. BOURQUIN,—New York.
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:—We have heard several times from you through Sister Giesecke in Germany, and received your greetings and sent our regards to you. But I feel as tho I should write directly to you this time, to inform you that the Lord has a people even here in Poland, and that a goodly number have been found here in a comparatively short time. There were only three of us when I first came here; but the Lord has blest the testimony and the circulation of the tracts and booklets to such an extent that now we number fifteen, nine brethren and six sisters. And the opposition on the part of those who claim to be faithful Christians, but who do not grasp the truth was, and is still, very severe, not only in this place, but in the entire vicinity, into which the truth has been carried in a wonderful manner, through various agencies, showing that it is the Lord’s work.
We are so thankful that the Lord has counted us worthy to see present truth, delivering us out of the gross darkness of Babylon, and translating us into his marvelous light. And we cannot help feeling that the Lord has condescended greatly in calling us, who in so many respects are much more unworthy than many others whom we know to be blinded and prejudiced against the truth, but who naturally seem to be much more qualified for service if their eyes were only open to the truth.
We have great difficulty in getting literature from Germany, and in fact from anywhere outside the Russian border, especially so of late, on account of the recent ecclesiastical and social troubles, but we are thankful for what we have already received, and are feeding with delight at the richly decked table of present truth. We are glad that you have not decided to discontinue issuing the German TOWER, even tho it comes so seldom and not nearly with the quantity of food the English brethren have furnished them. We earnestly hope that the fifth volume of the DAWN may appear in a German translation, and until then we will endeavor to be satisfied with the grace already bestowed upon us.
We wish you the Lord’s richest blessing in your ministries of love, and remember you in our prayers, hoping and praying that we may be remembered also in your petitions. We would be delighted to receive an acknowledgement of the receipt of these lines. And finally we send you hearty greetings. May the Lord bless you! Yours in the fellowship of Jesus Christ,
JOHANN WEINZ,—Russian Poland.
The following is from the Bandera, Texas, Enterprise of April 11, 1901. We commend the Brother’s method of announcing in his home paper the reasons for his withdrawal from a system, whose doctrines he could no longer support, and believe the temperate and careful manner in which he has stated the reasons for his action should be helpful in its influence upon any whom he may hereafter endeavor to interest in the “good news.”—EDITOR.
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“WHY I WITHDRAW FROM METHODISM
“Having recently withdrawn from the Methodist Church, of which I have been a member for more than thirty years, and knowing, as I do, that some will be wondering at my motive in doing so, and knowing, also, that of the various motives which will be imputed to me, some are likely to be suggested by those who have not investigated the matter for themselves, and hence will be incapable of rendering a fair judgment, I desire to occupy enough space in my county paper in which to give my true reason for the step I have taken, and then leave it to the public to approve or disapprove as they may feel inclined.
“My reason for leaving the church was not that I had any dissatisfaction with, or the slightest ill will towards, a single member of this or any other church, but simply because my honest convictions as to the true interpretation of God’s Word had become too much at variance with the doctrines taught by all the churches with which I am acquainted to admit of my longer remaining therein with justice to the church, to myself or my God.
“Whether by chance or by divine intervention, the MILLENNIAL DAWN series of Bible helps, consisting
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of five books, was recently placed in my hands. I confess it was with no little prejudice that I began to investigate the doctrines taught in them, but to my surprise I have found that:—
“1. They teach nothing which is not in the very strictest accord with the New Testament code of morals.
“2. I find that the author of said books ‘reasons together’ with his readers in the most fair, liberal and logical manner, giving quotation after quotation and reference after reference to the Bible in support of his construction and understanding thereof.
“So logical, patent and convincing are the theories advanced (if you chose to call them theories: for my part I call them truths) that I cannot resist them. With such beauty and grandeur do the books depict the Power, Wisdom, Justice and Love of the great Father, the Creator of all the world, as well as the beneficent character of Christ, the blessed Redeemer of all the world, that my mind has been opened to a far more vivid realization of the actual existence of God and his glorious plans and purposes concerning his creature, man; also the height and depth and length and breadth of the love of Christ, and the far-reaching efficacy of his sacrificial death on the cross, are so apparent that my heart has seemingly enlarged manifold, and my respect, reverence, love and admiration for God and Christ, as well as my love and good will towards my fellow creatures, have reached a point far, far beyond anything I ever before experienced.
“Hence I have determined to throw off the shackles of church creeds and prejudices, and with God’s help let the new light shine forth in my daily life; to present the MILLENNIAL DAWN doctrine to as many as desire to hear it, and to help those who hunger and thirst after truth, to the very best of my ability, trusting God for direction and help. So, then, in the fear of God, I heartily recommend every one to procure these books, and with receptive mind and earnest prayer to God for his guidance, read them with Bible in hand. WM. HUDSPETH.”
— July 15, 1901 —