LIGHT IN "DARKEST AFRICA"
The Harvest work is growing stronger than in past days. Our friends who were much against the Truth are now attending privately, and we are surely showing them the way of our Lord Jesus through His Holy Scriptures, and many are trusting in the Truth. I can say that they have some reason for believing the Truth now.
Surely we are living in the Time of the End, according to the Scriptures. We are seeing the clergy-people turning the Word of God into fables. They think they can stop the Christian people from sinning--as they call it--by whipping and by putting them in prison and by making them pay so [R5534 : page 271] much money. Can this stop the people sinning? No; not at all! If these were the Great Preacher's words and the words of our Heavenly Father, and His punishment against the wicked, they would surely stop the people from sinning.
But we read in the Bible that the Deliverer shall come, and the Kingdom of God shall come, and all nations shall know the Way of our God; but the wicked will He destroy. Also we learn from our Master's lips the saying, "Learn of Me." People may remember that our Lord found the people of Israel doing wrong against the Word of God, and they were proud. But we never see a single line in the Bible saying that He took even one of the Jews to the Roman Governor, to be put in prison, etc.
All these things make us to be strong in faith that the Harvest Message is true. "Though it tarry, it will come." We had not believed it for a certain time, but when we believed we consecrated ourselves unto death.
I can only let you know how we are doing. We hold meetings twice a month, beginning on Friday and lasting over Sunday. Friday, Bible Study; Saturday, discussion; Sunday, public meeting. Another week, the meeting on Friday is Question meeting; praise and testimony meeting on Saturday, and public meeting on Sunday. The number in attendance on Sunday, when we have general meeting, is 1,040, 385, 1,000, etc.; private meetings 36 to 40. But when we call all Churches to one place, hundreds of brethren are present!
We thank God for His blessings which He has bestowed upon us. Furthermore, we thank Him for showing us His secret and that He gives us Wisdom to understand His Holy Scriptures. How glad we are to see these things being fulfilled before our eyes! In Nyassaland we see many things which have been preached in our Churches, and what we are learning in the Volumes and WATCH TOWER--all these things are now being fulfilled. How glad we are to see that God has given us wisdom in preaching! How glad we are to see that our Lord is in the midst of us, leading us into His marvelous light! How glad we are that we "which in past times were not a people, are now the people of God"! And how glad we are to be dead to fleshly lusts, but to be alive to spiritual things! May God's blessing rest upon you!
Your younger brother in the Service,
H. LIMON ACHIRWA.--Africa.
THE STRENGTHENING CORD
DEAR BROTHER RUSSELL:--
Greetings in the Lord! I feel constrained to write you concerning my recent experiences in the Colporteur work, which are unusual. Several days ago I canvassed a lady who is a trance-medium. She did not order the books. Presently I called on another, who bought the Spiritualism book. Still another I called upon in the same block, not knowing in either case that they were Spiritualists.
This one began by telling me she is preparing herself to be a writing and talking medium, and how, at times, "the forces" torment her day and night until she uses strong will-power to disperse them, saying, "Leave me now; I must have rest."
Asking the Lord's assistance, I proceeded to point out from Scripture the origin of these evil spirits--the fallen angels. Strange to say, she accepted it all very readily and asked questions re the same so eagerly! At this juncture peculiar noises were heard about the room; rappings, cracklings and faint chucklings. She noticed my nervousness and said in an assuring tone, "There they are now! It's the spirits, because you are talking about them." No doubt they were much displeased because of fear that she would get her eyes opened. Another medium now entered the room and I left.
How thankful to the Lord I am that He through you has provided the "strengthening cord"--the Vow! As the consummation draws nearer we realize how necessary was this provision.
Much interest is now being aroused among the Natural Israelites in this city through distribution of Jewish Hopes and Restoration Prospects. Every family took one. They speak often of having read of Pastor Russell, of Brooklyn, in their Jewish papers. "He tells us of the restoration. Oh, we are so glad 'twill be soon!"
A dear brother bearing your name (Russell), although but three weeks reading the "Helping Hands," is rejoicing in the truths therein. He gives evidence of having made a consecration and is already showing his faith by his works, by helping the Lord's people. He expects soon to see the PHOTO-DRAMA OF CREATION in Boston. The Photo-Drama Scenario is stimulating interest to read the SCRIPTURE STUDIES. This brother desired me to tell you of his appreciation of the Truth.
Even where few books are placed it gives the Colporteurs great joy to be able to reach even one who is hungering for the Bread of Truth.
I wish to testify to the blessings the Lord in His goodness is sending me--especially through THE WATCH TOWER articles. The March 15th--"Are Ye Able?"--was so strengthening for the "Feet-members"!
Praying that the Lord's richest blessings rest upon you to the very end,
Yours by His grace, B. HAYNES.
HIS LIGHT INCREASING
DEARLY BELOVED PASTOR AND BROTHER:--
During a visit to the Washington Ecclesia last March it was my privilege to conduct a Question meeting in which, among others, some questions on the date of the end of the Harvest, of the Times of the Gentiles and of the deliverance of the Church were propounded to me and answered. In my answers I expressed my conviction that these three events would occur this fall. On the point of the deliverance of the Church I now consider my answer wrong.
It seems that notes were made on these answers and are being widely circulated among the brethren. I have not seen these notes, nor do I know how nearly they reproduce my answers. I am in receipt of many questions as to whether I still hold the thought that the Church leaves the world this fall. I have reason to believe that the Adversary is using this statement on the deliverance of the Church this fall, in these notes, to hold back some of the brethren from increasing light, which as "meat in due season," the Lord is pleased to give us through His appointed channel.
I deeply regret having made the statement, and the influence it is having; and therefore I desire to counteract its mischief. While I have the full assurance of faith that this fall is the end of the Harvest and of the Times of the Gentiles, I am happy to say, on the basis of Psalm 46; Leviticus 16:20-24; Matthew 20:8-16; and, in view of Elijah's activities subsequent to his arrival at Mount Horeb until he left this earth, that I now have the assurance of faith the Church is to remain on earth for awhile after October, 1914.
I shall be very thankful if you will, D. V., kindly publish this letter in THE TOWER in order to counteract as far as possible any mischief that Satan may attempt through the above mentioned statement in the notes in question. As a teacher in the Church I desire to subject all my utterances to "The good Word of God" as its increasing Light, as "meat in due season," dawns on my mind and heart; and by such increasing light modify previous imperfect understandings of things.
Dear Brother, it gives me great pleasure indeed to see "the good Word of God," as due to the Household, eye to eye with you. Daily I thank our dear Father and Elder Brother for the privilege of being a co-laborer and co-sufferer with you in the best of bonds. The Lord's continued blessing rest upon you and His Israel everywhere, whom it is my heart's pleasure to help and bless, but not hinder and injure! With much Christian love, in which Sister Johnson joins, I remain
Your brother and fellow-servant, PAUL S. L. JOHNSON.