Philadelphia, Pa., Dec. 4, 1907.
My Dear Brother Allison: – Your very kind and interesting letter came to hand while I was in Maine attending the associations there. It was a pleasant greeting on my arrival home, and I assure you I enjoyed its perusal. A few days ago I had the privilege of reading a letter written by you to Elder Durand, in which you spoke of my poor little letters written to Elder Durand and afterwards published in the Signs Of The Times. In your letter to brother Durand you unconsciously reversed the proper order of things by speaking of me in the terms which properly belong to you, and speaking of yourself in the terms which belong to me. My precious brother, I would gladly open up all my secret inner heart to you if I could express myself properly. I want you to still love and esteem me for the truth’s sake, but not for any qualifications that I might possess. If indeed I am one of the children in our heavenly Father’s family, I am the least among the thousands in Israel. All ray life I have been a slow learner and an unprofitable servant. When I was received into the church, twenty-four years ago, all I could say was that I had a desire to be an humble follower of the meek and lowly Jesus. To-day I cannot say more than that, I have not attained unto the wisdom and knowledge which I hoped I would. With David I can say, “Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.” My walk has been crooked; I have listened to the dictates of my own flesh; I cannot do the things that I would; I am poor and weak and ignorant, yet I hope, dear brother, I do know that the dear Lord does not require at my hands any of the work necessary to my salvation. I feel to hope that I am fully grounded and settled in the truth of inspiration, as expressed by the apostle when he said, “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you, will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” I also feel to know that the Lord can take a worm like me and thresh a mountain, if it is his pleasure.
Brother Durand has been a dear father in Israel to me. We live only sixteen miles apart, and see each other frequently; he is wise in counsel and excellent in judgment, and a sweet and instructive preacher. Our little church in Philadelphia has twenty-seven members, and our congregation numbers from fifty to one hundred. We have meeting every Sunday morning, and nearly every Sunday evening we meet together for singing and social intercourse. Peace, harmony and love reign in our midst. Our association (the Delaware) will meet with us next spring.
Please excuse this disconnected letter; I would write you a better one if I could. My wife joins me in love to yourself and your wife.
Affectionately your unworthy brother,
B. F. COULTER.
PHILADELPHIA, Pa., April 15, 1908.
Signs Of The Times
Volume 76., No. 14.
JULY 15, 1908.