by Thomas Neatby
BELOVED BRETHREN,—You will all be aware that humiliation before God is urged upon us by some of our dear brethren who have hitherto not felt at liberty to unite with us. They are anxious with a godly anxiety to remove every carnal hindrance to our walking together in the comfort of the Holy Ghost. They feel, and surely they are right, that the first step towards this end is that we should all get down before God in humble confession of "my sin and the sin of my people," that is, of the sin of the Church in its responsibility and of our part in it.
They urge, and rightly, further confession of our failure to walk humbly with God according to the truths He taught us many years ago as to the privileges and responsibilities of a feeble remnant in these last days. Alas! that we should have added to the carnal divisions of the Church—we who were taught of God that the Church of His counsels is one!
Let me urge upon you the solemn importance of this movement, and that we all should take our place in genuine confession and earnest prayer that He to Whom "belong mercies and forgiveness" may graciously come in, in healing.
How terribly worldliness, covetousness, the race for wealth, pride and self-sufficiency, self-indulgence in many forms, and withal the great lack of consciousness of our grievous failure in maintaining the holiness that becomes the Lord's house, have, alas! characterized us. But the confession must take in all saints without any distinction. Suffer this word of exhortation, and may God give it power (Rev. xxii. 12-20).
Yours affectionately in Christ,