A Second Letter from the Late Daniel Herbert
My dear Brother,
I received your friendly and much-esteemed letter, which I should have answered before now, but I have been rather unwell. My poor old tabernacle has been almost shaken down, but my heavenly Father has been again pleased to prop me up a little.
My dear friend, I have read over your letter very minutely, and from it I learn whereabouts you are. I can enter into all your ifs, and buts, and bows; and every inch of ground you are now walking in I have travelled over again and again. You mention in your letter the "faithful saying' which is so worthy of our attention. And what was that saying? It was a positive declaration of what Christ came into the world to accomplish. And what did he accomplish? Why, nothing less than the complete and everlasting salvation of every elect soul. Yes, my dear friend, Jesus came to do what he has completely done; therefore, if you would have peace, it must be by resting your eternal all upon him, for I am persuaded that nothing but a firm reliance upon his finished salvation will ever counteract those doubts and fears which so often perplex the mind. It would be your mercy in your worst seasons, to judge the matter as Manoah's wife did. If the Lord had designed that your lot should have been with the lost, he would never have shown you what he has. He has also shown you that your Adam-nature is totally Corrupt, and you have found, by painful experience, what Paul declares to the Galatians to be the case, "that the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh," that is, the whole fallen nature of man is in direct opposition to everything that is spiritual, and the carnal mind, being enmity against God, cannot know anything that is spiritual. But, my dear friend, by the power of God the Holy Ghost, we know that those who are not saved must be lost; and we are further assured that those who are not finally glorified were never justified, that those who are not justified were never called, and that those who are not called were never predestinated to eternal life; but those who have the Son have life, and those who believe in him shall be saved. How came it about that you and I have been made believers? I trust we can answer the question. As many as were ordained to eternal life shall believe, and no more; so therefore, because we were sons by eternal election, our names being written in the book of life, God has sent forth the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, which sometimes causeth us to cry, "Abba, Father." O, my dear brother, it is the goings forth of Jehovah in his Trinity of persons which is the source of all blessedness in this life and that which is to come. How admirably well suited are the sweet covenant promises of God to such poor, lost, helpless, worthless, and polluted sinners as we are! In these promises we hear of mere), for the miserable, pardon for the guilty, cleansing for the filthy, healing for the diseased, cure for the leper, help for the helpless, hope for the despairing, liberty for the slave, rest for the weary and heavy laden, a rich Christ for a poor beggar, and salvation for the lost. O the blessings that spring from eternal love, from eternal union to the eternal Head set up before the world began, to be everything to you and me that appertains to our everlasting salvation, that we may be one with Christ, united to Christ, saved in Christ, chosen in Christ, complete in Christ, holy in Christ, and without blame in Christ, and be for ever with Christ, who declares in his word, "Because I live ye shall live also, and where I am, there shall ye be also." O, my friend, these are special blessings, arising from special love, bestowed upon a special people, eternally loved by the Father, redeemed by the Son, and brought to the feet of Jesus by the efficacious work of God the Holy Ghost.
I hope you will be so kind as to communicate my most sincere affectionate remembrance to those dear friends who have thought me worthy of their kind attention, especially my dear friend Mr. H—, whose remarkable kindness can never be forgotten by me; and you may tell him, as it is very likely that I shall never see him or any of my S— friends any more in the flesh, that I am sometimes pleased with the idea that when the number of kindred souls are gathered together in the glorious city, the new Jerusalem, I shall see hum and them there, and perhaps know them to be the very friends who remembered me in my low estate, and unto whom I hope I shall hear my adorable Redeemer say, "Inasmuch as ye gave a cup of cold water unto the least of my disciples, ye did it unto me."
I believe I have told you of my going into Lincolnshire every year for the last ten years, and although I had declined all thoughts of undertaking such a long journey any more, yet I have received such a pressing and affectionate invitation to go once more, that I have resolved to do so, if my heavenly Father grants me strength of body, (my mind being already there,) and says to me, as he said to Joshua, "Be bold, and of a good courage, for the Lord thy God will be with thee whithersoever thou goest;" and my prayer is, "Lord, if thy presence go not with me, carry me not hence."
I fear my long letter will tire you, so I will conclude by wishing you to remember what the poet saith:
"Though winds may roar, and seas run high,
I remain your affectionate brother,
Sudbury, July 13, 1828.