INTERESTING LETTERS FROM FRIENDS.
Dear Brother Russell:--
Pray do not think that I write in a captious spirit, but the extracts from "The Jew," are statements so grossly overdrawn, if not absolutely and entirely untrue, that if you were to cause such accusations to be verified here before inserting them in the Tower, where absolute truth alone should appear, they certainly would not appear therein, except so far as true.
There is, and has been of late, a great influx of Jews ("Infidels, Turks, and offscouring of Europe") into England, London particularly, and it is not surprising that their ignorance of the language and generally, their clannish herding together, their filthiness and their habits and manners, as well as their injury to the employment of others, should be resented almost exclusively by a poor and uneducated people whom they displace or come into unpleasant contact with (and particularly at this time).
Precisely the same feeling is manifested toward Chinamen in San Francisco, and on the Pacific coast, etc., the difference being that in the United States there is legislation against them,--but here Jews and any nationality have absolute freedom and assured and certain protection and even-handed justice.
Such articles as that from "The Jew" are calculated to produce hatred, because they manifest a spirit of gross ingratitude, and wilful lying (there is no other word for it), when the Jew question is considered broadly and not from perhaps some isolated case. As to the political parties being pledged to anti-Semitism, or any other charges against them as a people, or even against their capitalists (except it may be one or two German Jew South African firms), these are on a par with the rest of it and not worthy of notice. The fact is that newly found freedom, with some, cause them, from ignorance, to be aggressively and offensively assertive, and presume upon the liberty of action and speech, etc., accorded them--and so they assist largely in bringing about that of which they complain.
I write out of warmest personal regard, and respect and sincere Christian love.
I am, dear Brother, Yours truly in Christ,
B. C. HUGHES,--England.
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[Nothing was farther from our intention than to intimate that the masses of the British are Jew-baiters: nor that those who do the baiting are without provocation. We merely mentioned it as "news;" and as evidence that the Jew will yet, as the Bible declares, be persecuted in every nation and thus be driven back to Palestine when Zionism shall succeed in opening that door.--Editor.]
Dear Brother Russell:--
Greetings from the Church of Los Angeles!
According to 1 Cor. 16:2, we have endeavored to follow Paul's advice, and have provided a treasury, from which is drawn, the expenses of the church, the expenses for volunteer service, also the expenses of any in need; and from this treasury we now send the Tract Society a little thank-offering. We, as a body, unite in the desire, to express our appreciation of the privilege of obtaining this literature for "Volunteer" work, and of the opportunity to serve it, while it is yet called day. Our earnest desire is to help the Bride to make herself ready; our earnest prayer is for the establishment of the kingdom.
We desire to thank you and the "Tower" office assistants, [R2937 : page 14] for your labor of love to the Church, especially for all efforts expended in our behalf. Above all we thank our Heavenly Father, who is the giver of every good and perfect gift, and we know of no better way to express our gratitude than to send to the fund the enclosed $50.00, which has been raised for this purpose together with the surplus in our treasury.
We cannot hope to pay for the thousands of pages we have distributed; but we trust you will accept this as an expression of our gratitude.
We ask your prayers, that each of our number may be more zealous, more faithful, more fervent in spirit to serve our God and lay down our lives for the brethren, loving His approval above all else.
With Christian love and prayers for your steadfastness, we remain, your fellow-servants, in Christ,
Church of Los Angeles.
My dearly beloved Bro. Russell:--
My poor heart overflows with gratitude to our dear Lord, for the beneficial and sweet moments we have so richly enjoyed with you during this, the first Christian convention that I have ever seen in the city of Richmond. Dear brother, rest assured that your labor is not in vain here; for the 12th and 13th of October, 1901, will long be a pleasure to think of. The feast of good things continued with some of us the next day, while God's dear children before leaving the city have been telling of the joy and benefits received. No jars, no objections, no schism or worldly contention; but praise and thanks to God from every quarter,--that we attended the convention and all received such a blessing.
Truly our prayers for this season of refreshing were answered. We thought that we loved you, very dearly before, and esteemed you very highly for your works' sake; but these sessions with you have kindled our love so much, that we almost feel impatient for the beginning of eternity when in God's kingdom we part no more. O [R2937 : page 15] brother, the Lord knows that I feel these sentiments, and I believe that the other dear ones also do. This season with you has built us up in the most holy faith, and we pray that it may long, yea, very long last us. The dear brethren leaving for their homes were saying, "How clear this point was made; and how rich was that thought; and how long I have wanted to see dear brother Russell, the channel through which our God has sent us the blessed truth, and my longings have been realized."
We do hope, that it may meet with your approval to still further encourage us by reporting our convention in the next "Tower." With this hope, I give as nearly as I could count them, the number present, i.e., believers. I made the count one hundred and twenty-eight, possibly a few over or under. Fourteen symbolized their consecration by water baptism. Five states and District of Columbia were represented. Pray for us here, dear brother, that we may continue faithful, and let our light shine, through love and humility as well as otherwise. May our Father's richest blessings be with you to the end.
Your brother in the love and service of our dear Lord,
M. L. STAPLES,--Virginia.
[This report is late;--crowded out of our previous issues. ED.]
Dear Brother Russell:--
How I long to see you. I have had a big fight and gained a glorious victory. I send you my article prepared for the Conference. I had a hard time to get a hearing, as my name was called before I reached the seat of Conference. Had I been there then I could have had the floor; but after that it was difficult. After pressing the matter they allowed me five minutes to speak and I read rapidly until I reached the sentence, "Thy Kingdom come," two thirds through, and there the Bishop called me to order. He said I had used up six minutes and I asked for an extension of time but could not get it. (They had enough.) So I asked our own City Editor if he would like to publish it and he consented.
There was a great surprise I assure you, at Syracuse Conference, when I withdrew from it and gave my reasons even partially. I commenced giving out tracts-- until all were gone. When I gave one I said, "Read that carefully, when you are all alone." I have a good many old friends in the Conference and Church (Nominal), but thanks be to God, I am the Lord's free man.
Some have asked me what church I am going to unite with, and my answer is the "Church of the first born, whose names are written in heaven."
Yours in love, B. F. WEATHERWAX,--New York.
Dear Brother Russell:--
I wrote you a short time since for some samples of your publications to which you kindly replied, by forwarding me several copies of the "Watch Tower" and some tracts, all of which I have carefully read. I am more than ever convinced of the correctness of your views of Scriptural truth. I try to make the Word of God the Counsellor and Guide of my life, and I rejoice in every development of light and truth.
Have you a Church organization? if so, what is it called, and what is the form of your church government?
What is required of persons desiring to unite with the Church? Have you a regular ministry? and how are they appointed and employed? An answer to the foregoing questions, and all information you may be able to furnish will be much appreciated.
That you may not be in ignorance as to whom you address, I will say, that I am a minister in the Congregational Church, and if you desire can give you satisfactory references.
Since writing you, Vol. I., "The Plan of the Ages," has been recovered, and though much mutilated, is still readable. I herewith enclose you 25c in stamps for which please send me Vol. II., "The Time is at Hand." The other volumes, I will order later on, or after carefully reading this.
There is great unrest and dissatisfaction among professing Christians, and it seems to me they desire, as they truly need, instruction concerning the truth as it is in Jesus. How shall this be furnished? It may be you have tracts for free distribution; if so, and you feel like entrusting me with a small supply, I will endeavor to place them where they will do the most good.
Pardon my long letter, and if you find time, amidst your arduous labors, I would be glad to receive a reply.
Yours in Christ,
L. F. WAY,--Texas.
[We sent the Brother a copy of "Zion's Watch Tower" containing an article on "Which is the True Church?" with our answer and hope to hear from him further, and still more enthusiastically after he has read more.-- Editor.]
Dear Brother Russell:--
The brethren have done excellently in distributing the tracts sent us.
They had an amusing, though joyful experience in distributing at the last meeting of the "Christian" Church Convention. They began distributing to the few stragglers that came out before the close of the meeting. Among these was a minister who upbraided them and told them that he should warn the people against them. This he did, announcing from the pulpit that there was literature being distributed at the door that should not be read and everyone should refuse to accept it. The result was that the people crowded around the brethren with outstretched hands eager to get them. The clerical gentleman probably never served God better in his life than he did when he forbade the people reading the tracts. Everyone was surely read in search of forbidden fruit.
We have already had an illustration of the truth of your prediction in the last Tower. Last Sunday a local preacher in talking of the people who had "jumped the track" after defining Christian Science and the Dowieites said,--"There is another class of people, who claim to hear the call 'come out of her,' who separate themselves and put a weird interpretation to the Scriptures. What are these? "Religious anarchists! nothing more, nothing less."
Surely this is an indication of what we may expect in the near future. May the dear Lord strengthen us that we may be prepared to stand fast in the faith when that evil day shall come.
Yours in the blessed hope,
(Mrs.) J. M. WHITE.--Iowa.
Dear Brother Russell:--
I know that you will be gratified to learn that the Cleveland Convention has proven an increasing blessing to me, the Lord using it and its influence, among other things, to increase my hungering and thirsting for righteousness, i.e., the walking more zealously in the footsteps of the dear Master, using every occasion, and as far as possible, making occasion, to do his commandment-- love the dear brethren as he loved us. Then, too, what grand opportunity we occasionally have to bear testimony to the world of our faith in the kingdom, and how it will make all things right. Our little band of faithful ones here is growing in zeal and knowledge, and the spirit of the Master.
I want you to rest assured, dear brother, of my increasing love for you, and appreciation of your work in the Lord. As Paul was to Timothy, so, in a great measure at least, have you been to me, a father in Christ; and in the Lord's own good time and way, I hope to testify more fully to you my appreciation of all you have done and are doing. It comforts me to tell you that in every prayer--secret--I bear you to the throne of favor, realizing that as the Lord has appointed you to be so prominent a teacher, you receive a correspondingly severer trial, or testing. Thank God, we know His grace is sufficient for all your needs, and that having begun He can finish His good work in you. May your faith fail not.
I did not intend so long a letter, realizing how fully your time is occupied. Remember me in love to the household with you.
In the bonds of Christian fellowship,
W. E. PAGE.--Wisconsin.