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p373 [G (C?) Brockhaus] [From the German.] DEAR BROTHER, - You will be pleased to hear something of the Lord's work in these distant lands. But first a word as to -: I am full of hope about him. He is open, and loves his family, and that is a good deal. Pure unbelief hardens the heart and nourishes pride, and pride is never open. But the work will begin in the conscience. If the head thinks, it is always sceptical, can be nothing else, because it is altogether unable to comprehend God. He would not be God if human understanding could measure Him. God sets the conscience in activity in its true position through faith alone: we are subject, and acknowledge God in His transcendence. I do not believe that his conscience is asleep: I do not say that it is brought into the presence of God, but I am full of hope that the grace of God will do it.

I remained some months in New Zealand, and God has, I doubt not, blessed the visit. But I feel that I have left my work unfinished, only I could not stay there longer. New assemblies have arisen, and the old ones are confirmed and increased. But there was more still to do. Now the condition of things is quite peculiar. Brother Deck, long known and loved, had, through various circumstances, fallen under the influence of Bethesda. Much blessed in England and in New Zealand in conversion, of gentle spirit and godly, he had not the courage to investigate the matter, and fled. But it followed him, and he could not escape from it. A tract by his own son opened his eyes, and shewed him where he was; not only that he had abandoned the principles of brethren and denied the unity of God's assembly - the tract had shewn this - but that he had lost his spiritual communion with God, and entirely forgotten and lost precious truths. He has, with most faithful and subdued spirit, openly acknowledged this: it was beautiful to read. God opened many hearts, and the intelligent brethren have almost all come back, except in two localities. He is himself very happy, and there are thorough-going assemblies everywhere, and new ones have arisen, some rather numerous. There was undiscovered evil in some, and all this was brought to light and put away. Our brother is encouraged and happy. But all is not yet done. The work is spreading in Australia, and there are some rather numerous conversions. … After thirty-one days at sea, by Fiji and the Sandwich Islands, and five days and nights upon the railway without leaving the carriage except for meals - and not that always - I came as far as Canada to attend a conference. It was numerously attended, and the Lord's presence was abundantly discerned. Many fresh brethren from the United States were present, and had never experienced such blessing. There was liberty in the Bible readings and they were full of blessing. All have returned blessing and praising God, and we hope that an abiding blessing will flow from it. Not that because there is blessing there may not be conflict upon the path. We have great cause for pain because an old brother, long blessed in Jamaica, is now disposed to embrace the doctrine of the Restorationists. Our hope is ever that he will be brought back. Those in his neighbourhood have been warned, and do not accept the doctrine at all. The truth spread in an extraordinary way in the neighbourhood, so that it is very sad. It was discovered at the right time, thank God; God is ever faithful. For long as I think, God's guidance has been lacking.

I relate what is sad just as what is joyful, dear brother; I believe that the communication to brethren of all is strengthening, and produces more fellowship in the Lord, and much more with hearts faithful before God - not only to send bright accounts, but to share in the whole work of the Lord, to sorrow with the sorrowing ones, to rejoice with them that rejoice, to pray for all. What I fear for brethren is, the world; gradually does it creep in, without one's perceiving it. In general it is a time of blessing, and the work extends wonderfully. The enemy often enters by the back door, because we are occupied at the front door. There is One, His name be praised! who is ever watchful; my confidence is in Him, He nourishes and cares for His assembly as a man his own flesh. What consolation! I can say, weak as I am, He is ever more everything to my soul. What else should He be?

Hearty greetings to all the brethren! God knows if I shall see you yet again, I am not yet clear whether the work will leave me free to go to Europe, as I hoped, before the winter. There is much to do, and I am getting old, only every year affords more and more the motive for praise and thanks to God, that He gives eternity to praise Him more worthily.

Your attached brother in the Lord.