Archive for the ‘Uriah Smith’ Category

Whiter Than Snow, 1880

February 17, 2009
WHEN a flippant unbeliever accosted an earnest
evangelical preacher with an objection to his ser-
mon, and said: “Sir, I don’t like your theology.
It is all blood, blood, BLOOD! It savors of the
shambles. I like a pleasanter gospel.” The am-
bassador of Christ replied: “True, my theology
is bloody. It recognizes as its foundation the
death of Christ, with the thorn-pierced brow,
bleeding hands and open side. I am quite con-
tent that it should be bloody; for God has said:
‘ Without shedding of blood,’ there is no remission
of sins; and, ‘The blood of Jesus Christ his Son
cleanseth us from all sin.’ “

“Scarlet” sins become “white as snow.” How?
“Not by works of righteousness which we have
done.” All the dyers on earth cannot dye a red
into white. And no human merit can avail or
cleanse one crimson spot of guilt away. “By the
washing of regeneration and renewing of the
Holy Ghost,” are we justified and sanctified,
“through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
whom God had set forth to be a propitiation
through faith in his blood.”

Of the redeemed in glory we read, “they have
washed their robes and made them white in the
blood of the Lamb.” The livery in Heaven is
white. “Fine linen, clean and white,” “white
robes,” ” white horses;” ” a white cloud,” as the
seat of the Son of man; “a great white throne”
for the Judge; “a white stone ” for the accepted
saints, who “walk in white” with him who has
made them ” worthy.” Verily, we must wear our
“white raiment” here, if we would enter there.
” They are without fault before the throne of
God.” And ” Christ also loved the Church and
gave himself for it, that he might sanctify and
cleanse it—that he might present it to himself a
glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle, or
any such thing.”

To the Fountain opened for sin and uncleanness
let us daily draw near, and take with us the
words of “the snow-prayer.” As said a happy
little girl who came in one morning to her Chris-
tian mother’s knee, after a bright race in the crisp,
freshly-fallen snow, “Mamma, I could not help
pausing while I was at play, to pray the snow-
prayer.” “What did you pray, my dear? ” asked
the interested mother. The dear child replied,
“Mamma, I said to Jesus, ‘Wash me, and I shall
be whiter than snow.”

 “Helpless and foul as the trampled snow,
Sinner, despair not, Christ stoopeth low,
To rescue the soul that was lost in sin,
And raise it to life and enjoyment again;
Groaning, bleeding, dying for thee,
The Crucified hung on the accursed tree;
His accents of mercy fell soft on thine ear—
Is there mercy for me? will he heed my prayer?
O God, in the stream that for sinners doth flow,
Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.”


 The Signs of the Times, February 19, 1880 (a DjVu file)
Pacific Press Publishing Association, Oakland, Ca.
(James White, J.N. Andrews, and Uriah Smith cited as the editors)

Posted also at:

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George King, the First Colporteur, 1880

January 6, 2009


Review and Herald, February 1, 1923, pp. 21-22


AFTER listening to a stereopticon lecture by Elder James Hickman on the wonderful, world-wide extent of our present canvassing activities, and seeing the picture of the familiar face of Brother George King, the recognized founder of our present canvassing system, I feel that it may be of interest to the readers of the REVIEW to know something of the early start of that particular branch of our work, and how Brother King was led into that field of labor.

At the close of his sermon in the Battle Creek church, one Sabbath in the early winter of 1880, as Elder James White stepped down from the pulpit, he remarked to my father, “Uncle Richard, don’t leave until I see you. I want to talk with you and Aunt Huldah a minute after the crowd gets away.”

Standing by my father’s side, I listened as any small boy will, wondering what Brother White had to say.

When the congregation had gone, Elder White came np to where we were standing, and as I now recall his words, they were something like this:

” Brother Godsmark, I’ve got a man up at our house that I just do not know what to do with. He has been hanging around for the last two weeks, wanting to preach. He says he knows that the Lord has called him to the work, and maybe He has, but he doesn’t look much like a preacher to me. He is devoted and seems like a good man. We hear him praying in his room a good deal, but he has no education, can scarcely talk at all, and I don’t believe we can ever make a preacher out of him. I wish you people would take him out on the farm. He can work enough to pay for his room and board, and maybe by next summer we can let him go out with a tent. I wish you would see if there is any ‘ preach ‘ in him. His name is King, George King.”

On our way home that afternoon, father drove by Elder White’s home and took in a tall, slim, seedy-looking man whose dark, rusty-brown overcoat looked much the worse for wear. He placed in the back of our buggy a little old trunk which contained all the worldly possessions he had. He was given a comfortable room just across the hall from mine, and I remember how often I would be awakened in the early hours by his earnest prayers before the rest of the family were astir.

He helped about the chores, but spent much of his time studying his Bible. Mother helped him to arrange his sermons, and tried to teach him how a minister should present his subjects, for he seemed to have no education, no ability, and no initiative at all; but he knew that the Lord had called him to the work. He used to go alone into the front room, and there, standing before the law and prophetic charts that hung upon the wall, try to explain the message to the empty chairs he assembled before him.

One day ‘ toward spring, Brother Edmund’s family, the only family of Sabbath keepers there was for several miles around, came to visit us (we used to visit back and forth in those days), and it was soon arranged that after dinner Brother King should preach his first sermon. My aunt, Mrs. Evans, one of the early Sabbath keepers, was sent for, and came over to help swell the crowd. This was to be his trial sermon, and was to decide whether the Lord had endowed him with a gift to preach. When it was decided that the time for test had come, poor Brother King refused to eat any dinner, and although it was a cold winter day, he spent the time out in the barn in earnest prayer to God.

After dinner the chairs were arranged, and an earnest season of prayer was engaged in before inviting him in. He made a blundering failure. His talk was short and anything but to the point. As he left the room, he tearfully asked that they pray earnestly that the Lord’s will might be done.

After another season of prayer and a long pause, for no one seemed to want to express an adverse opinion, mother stood up and said, as best I can remember, that it was clear to her that Brother King was not called to preach in the manner that others preached. He could never go into the desk and hold a crowd, but he could be a fireside preacher,— that is, he could go to the homes of the people, and preach to them around their firesides; that he could give away tracts and talk the truth to people where they were.

Father, who stuttered so ho could never take any part in public meetings, said that if Brother King would only do that, he would gladly buy all the tracts he would ever need, and would furnish him with whatever money he might require, as he would have no possible way of obtaining money of his own. It was soon arranged that so long as he devoted his life to that work, he should always have a home with us, should never want for food, clothes, or money, and his tracts should always be supplied.

Brother King accepted this as the will of God, and his call to untried fields. His clothes were put in respectable shape, and the next Monday he started out. He carried a little old satchel, the best we had, full of tracts. His pockets, too, were bulging out with papers to give away, and he had $2 in his pocket, enough to last him till the next Friday night, when he was to return and go to church with us. Friday came, and no Brother King; Sabbath morning, and still no Brother King. We felt no small concern as to his whereabouts.

When we reached the church in Battle Creek, he was there, so full of joy that he hardly knew how to tell of the rich blessings which had been his to enjoy as he had gone to the homes of the people and tried to tell them of the glorious truths that filled his own soul. He had not only given away a large number of his tracts, but had actually sold sixty-two cents’ worth.

The next Monday he again started out with renewed vigor, another satchel full of tracts, and this time $2.62 in money. That was his last visit at our home. This week he succeeded in converting nearly his whole satchel full of literature into cash. From that time on he bought his books direct from the Review and Herald Publishing House. During the summer he sold a good many dollars’ worth of tracts and books, mostly books.

In the fall he urged his case so strongly before the brethren at the Conference that they decided to prepare him a special issue of “Thoughts on Daniel and the Revelation,” binding the two books together in one. I remember how he urged the matter in his blundering way, telling them that if Elder Smith would only take his engraving tool (Elder Smith did all our illustrating in those days), and would engrave another picture of the “great and terrible beast ” of Daniel 7, making it look larger, more fierce, and then just print it in red ink, he could sell those books readily.

That was the way our canvassing work began. The man whom Elder White did not know what to do with, became the pioneer of this wonderful means of carrying this message to earth’s remotest bounds.


More on George King

Arthur Spalding (1949). Tract and Colporteur Work. Captains of the Host. pp. 411-420.

Richard Schwarz (1979). Light Bearers to the Remnant. pp. 155-156

George King (1882). Canvassing. Review and Herald, January 24, 1882, page 12.

Smith and Lewis in Correspondence, 1859

December 18, 2008

Note that Uriah Smith refers to A.H. Lewis as Bro. Lewis. Lewis was the main Seventh day Baptist spokesperson during the 1800’s. This 1859 interaction captures a time when SDA’s were less in number than SDB’s; a time when Adventists had an extremely limited view of their mission to the world.

Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, February 3, 1859, page 7

From Bro, Lewis.

BRO. SMITH : In accordance with the suggestion of Bro. J. Clarke in the Review, No. 8, I embrace this opportunity to communicate with your readers, if, perchance, what I may say shall be found worthy a place in your columns.

I commenced reading the Review some three or four years since, for two reasons: I wished to learn something of those who supported it, and advocated its doctrines, and felt willing to receive any new light upon the all-important subject of our lives. Upon the question of the Sabbath I had no inclination to disagree with you, as I had always observed it ; other points I did not embrace at once. I thought them quite consistent, yet I never saw them in their true light until, with the Bible for my guide, I sought God in prayer for light to see his truth, and I now bless his holy name that I ever heard the three messages, the counsel of the faithful and true Witness, the immortality of man as brought to light in the Bible, &c., &c. But for meeting with Bro. Steward, of Mauston, and the Review when I did, in my boyish incredulity I doubt not but I should long since have renounced the Bible, and now have been attempting to “climb up” by some theory of speculative philosophy; and whatever may be the end of the Review or of Adventism, thus far I feel that it stopped me and brought me back to the sure guide of the world, the Bible.

There are but few here who call themselves Adventists, yet I believe there are not a few who are willing to keep all God’s commands and serve him in all his appointed ways. The Seventh-day Baptists are the leading denomination in our immediate neighborhood ; yet there are many around and among us who observe Constantine’s Sabbath instead of that of the Lord. But I trust God has yet good laid up in store for his children in Berlin, I sometimes try to vindicate the truths of God’s word here on the Sabbath. yet a press of other, duties, of a literary nature, make it impossible for me to study or reflect much, and my own weakness, and at times want of faith, seem to retard any effort in any great degree for good. A few seem alive to God, and the interests of his kingdom, yet many around us (especially those who do not keep the Sabbath) seem too much inclined to seek only a form of godliness without the power. O, that God would not say of us as he did of Ephraim but would send us light and give us hearts to receive it. Allow me a question to yourself or some of your correspondents :

Is the Third Angel’s Message being given, or to be given except in the United States? Yours striving to overcome.


Berlin, Wis., Jan. 22d, 1859.

NOTE. — We have no information that the Third Message is at present being proclaimed in any country besides our own. Analogy would lead us to expect that the proclamation of this message would be coextensive with the first : though this might not perhaps be necessary to fulfill Rev. x, 11, since our own land is composed of people from almost every nation. — ED.



Profile of A.H. Lewis

Uriah Smith, Poet

December 18, 2008


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Part One a
Part One b
Part One c
Part One d
Part One e

Part Two a
Part Two b
Part Two c