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General Conference Bulletin, vol. 1

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    THE following is a brief abstract of Elder O. A. Olsen’s sermon last Sabbath, referred to in yesterday’s BULLETIN:— “Ye are the salt of the earth ... Ye are the light of the world.” These words picture the position of God’s people in the world. He has set them here as lights. “Ye are all the children of the light.” Christ, as the great source of all blessings, is the author of light. He is the light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world. When Christ dwells in us, and the light in him is manifested through our mortal flesh, then we become lights in the sense of our text. As the Father sent Christ into the world, so Christ sends us. As Christ came to represent the Father and his character, so we are sent into the world to represent the character of Christ and the government of God. Thus the church occupies the highest possible position in the world. God designed that his people of old should keep his law and requirements, and thus become to all the surrounding nations a light and a blessing. “Behold I have taught you statutes and judgments; ... keep them therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the light of the nations which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.” Deuteronomy 4:6, 7. Ancient Israel did not at all times occupy this exalted station. They kept not God’s requirements, so he brought them into straitened places. God did not force their service. All their rebellion was from free choice, and they were given the desires of their own hearts, but had in consequence leanness of soul. God has the same purpose toward his people today. To them he has committed great light. This places upon them a great responsibility. What account shall they render for this? God will test his people upon every point. They shall stand without guile in their mouths, and without spot and wrinkle. The time just preceding the coming of the Lord is represented as a time of great danger, when men would be drunken with the spirit of the world. At this time the Spirit of the Lord exhorts: “Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion.” Isaiah 52:1. If we do not respond now to this call, we shall be left in darkness. We have been led captive by sin, but now the call is to break the bands and go free. In us there is no strength to do this, but if we will but put on our strength, Christ Jesus, we shall have strength to bear off the victory. Then will the church be clothed with power, and will indeed stand forth, as designed by God, the light of the world in all its fullness. The place designed for Israel of old — a light to the nations of earth — is the place God wants his people to occupy to-day. “Darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people; but the Lord shall rise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.” May this indeed be the condition of God’s people to-day. “Ye are the light of the world.” May God enable us to truly represent him who is the light of the world, showing forth the praises of his name unto eternal honor and glory.GCB February 18, 1895, page 209.2


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    THE second meeting of the General Conference convened in the Tabernacle at 10 A.M. Hymn 498 was sung, and N. C. McClure led in prayer. The chairman of the Committee on Delegates’ Credentials offered a request that the seats assigned to delegates be strictly reserved for them, except in cases where others are invited to them by the Chair.GCB February 18, 1895, page 209.3

    The minutes of the first meeting of the Conference were then read and accepted without correction.GCB February 18, 1895, page 209.4

    The Chair read a notice from the managers of the Haskell Home announcing that the institution would receive visitors on Sundays and Wednesdays between 3 and 5 P.M.GCB February 18, 1895, page 209.5

    The following delegates having arrived since the last meeting were seated in the Conference: M. H. Gregory, Kansas; Jacob Shively, Iowa; L. D. Santee, Iowa. F. I. Richardson from the Maritime Provinces was invited to a seat with the delegates.GCB February 18, 1895, page 209.6

    The telegram received on Friday from the brethren in Norway was referred to the Committee on Resolutions.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.1

    The Chair called the attention of the Conference to the intimations already noticed that the brigantine “Pitcairn” was inadequate to our requirements, and suggested that a committee be appointed to take this matter under immediate attention. J. E. Graham moved, C. H. Jones seconded, that the Chair be authorized to appoint such a Committee. The motion prevailing, J. E. Graham, C. H. Jones, A. R. Henry, W. W. Prescott, E. H. Gates, were announced as said committee.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.2

    The order of the day, the report of the Educational Secretary, was announced. This document is presented elsewhere. After its reading, the Conference adjourned.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.3


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    THE first meeting of the International Tract Society was held Sunday, Feb. 17, at 3 P.M. The President, Elder S. N. Haskell, being absent, Elder O. A. Olsen, the Vice-president, presided.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.4

    “Sowing In The Morning” was sung, and Elder S. H. Lane led in prayer.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.5

    According to the Constitution of the Society, all delegates to the General Conference, officers of State and colonial societies, and life and annual members of the International Tract Society, are members and qualified voters.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.6

    On motion, the reading of the minutes of the last session was waived.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.7

    Regrets were expressed by Elder Olsen that the President of the Society could not be present; but confidence was expressed that Elder Haskell’s visit to South Africa has been, in the providence of God, of great assistance to the work in that field.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.8

    The address of the Vice president was delivered, and will appear in another place. At the conclusion of this address, A. O. Tait, the Corresponding Secretary of the Society, was called upon, and spoke of the many inquiries that are coming to the main office of the Society from those who have heard of our work, and desire to read our literature and learn more fully our views. Even publishers are writing to the Society for catalogues, prices, and discounts, saying that they have received inquiries for our works.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.9

    The Secretary also stated that the gentleman who has been engaged to build a boat for New York harbor, is becoming interested in the work for which the boat is being constructed; and has decided to make a little boat free, to be used in connection with the other, for going ashore. This man has been reading the Sentinel, and suggests that that be the name of the new boat.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.10

    Elder H. P. Holser, of Basle, Switzerland, spoke with reference to the work of the International Tract Society in Central Europe. He said that for some time they had conducted their publishing there under the name of the Society; and that particularly through the medium of the Book Exchange of Leipsic, the Society is becoming known in many parts of the world. Leipsic is the greatest book center of the world, and almost every publishing house of note in Europe has a representative there. The International Tract Society is represented there; and the Book Exchange contains a catalogue of our foreign publications; and inquiries even from this country, come to the central European branch of the Society, in regard to our books.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.11

    The excellent effect of some of our publications, particularly “Steps to Christ,” was spoken of, it being highly recommended by persons not of our faith. The Society has been very fortunate in securing excellent translations by outsiders of a number of our publications, and tracts are now furnished in languages which extend to the borders of the Black Sea.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.12

    The book “Bible Readings” has created considerable stir among Catholic circles; and a copy was sent to Rome for examination. As would naturally be expected, the pope condemned the book.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.13

    The appeal which Elder Holser made from the decision of the court in regard to his Sunday labor, was widely circulated, and was read by the Secretary of the Supreme Court of Switzerland, who could see the consistency of the claims set forth, and said to one of our brethren, “Your people have a better idea of justice than those gentlemen in the palace,” referring to the Supreme Justices.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.14

    Elder D. A. Robinson, of London, was asked to give something with reference to the work of the Society in England. He stated that the Society was legally organized there last summer, and that its work is coming to be known and felt. Their business office is located on first floor at 59 Paternoster Row, London, and our publications are daily exposed for sale in a large show window in that busy part of the city. At first our work there was passed by without notice; but several interesting incidents were given, showing that it is now attracting attention. When the tract “Rome’s Challenge” appeared, quite a large number of them were placed in the display window of our office on Paternoster Row, for a day or two, when one of the city papers, The Ransomer, came out in an article stating that ordinarily Protestants did not do very much advertising for the Catholics, but the Seventh-day Adventists were doing a great deal of it; but the paper confessed that upon the Sabbath question we were the only consistent Protestants on the globe.GCB February 18, 1895, page 210.15

    The Present Truth, the London paper published by the Society, is enjoying a largely increased circulation; and is accomplishing very gratifying results. It has to depend largely upon those not of our faith for circulation; and a number of persons who have become interested are paying for clubs for free distribution. One lady who is doing much mission work takes a club of 200 copies, and considers The Present Truth the best paper she can find for her work.GCB February 18, 1895, page 211.1

    Elder F. J. Hutchins, of the Bay Islands, Central America, gave some account of the work that has been accomplished by the Society in his field. He said that millions of pages of tracts, and as great a number of pages of books, furnished by the Society, had been distributed there, and a number had received the light of truth through the reading matter thus furnished. In one place this work was given quite an impetus by the free advertisement of an opposing minister. He condemned from his pulpit a number of our tracts, such as “Christ and the Sabbath,” “Rome’s Challenge,” and “What Do These Things Mean?” and as a result, these particular numbers had a largely increased sale.GCB February 18, 1895, page 211.2

    The need of literature in Spanish in this field is pressing; and the hope was expressed that this want may soon be supplied.GCB February 18, 1895, page 211.3

    Elder D. T. Jones also spoke of the urgent need of readings in the Spanish language for the Mexican field. Several instances were given showing the great need of the people in Mexico of Christian literature of a character that they can comprehend.GCB February 18, 1895, page 211.4

    The Treasurer being called upon for his report, presented the report which will appear hereafter.GCB February 18, 1895, page 211.5

    The evident prosperity of the Society was partly accounted for by the fact that its funds have been augmented by those of the International Religious Liberty Association, the two organizations having in some degree united in their work.GCB February 18, 1895, page 211.6

    The Chair, being so authorized appointed the committees:—GCB February 18, 1895, page 211.7

    On Nominations. — G. A. Irwin, N. C. Mc Clure, T. A. Kilgore.GCB February 18, 1895, page 211.8

    On Plans of Work. — R. C. Porter, D. T. Jones, H. P. Holser, F. M. Wilcox, A. O. Tait.GCB February 18, 1895, page 211.9


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