by T. Austin-Sparks
Dear friends in Christ,
In late summer of the year 2000, we were contacted by brother Herald E. Hsu, and he told us that on January 30, 1964, brother and sister Sparks had come to Manila, at the request of the brethren, to share the Word of the Lord. Some of these brothers and sisters in Manila had served the Lord in China with Watchman Nee, and because of their stand in the Lord, they had endured much persecution when China became a communist nation. Then they came to Manila through the ways of the Lord, which is always the way of the Cross.
The meetings began the evening of January 30, and they had forty-two meetings together which lasted through the evening of March 12. These brothers and sisters in Christ met together, except for a few days, both in the evenings and the mornings. Brother Hsu told us that these messages were taped, and that they had also translated them into English, and that brother Sparks had also edited a few of them. These manuscripts had been carefully preserved, we believe by the Lord, for almost 40 years - for such a time as this. And through God's Grace this brother offered these priceless manuscripts to us.
So we prayerfully began to read and edit these messages; and as we did, we began to realize that the Lord was speaking not only to those who had gathered in Manila, but He was speaking an eternal word to the whole body of Christ. The great theme of those meetings was taken from the Lord's Own High Priestly prayer: "That they may all be one, even as We are One." Let us quote from a letter that brother Sparks wrote, a letter which is just as timely today as when it was written: "The great enemy does not give up his determination to interrupt fellowship and to spoil the work of the Lord by bringing division among His people. Everywhere this evil work is being pressed with increasing intensity. The enemy is set upon destroying anything that will result in the Lord Jesus coming into His full place. We must stand and withstand and do all in our power to keep this ground from him. It is costly, and it demands that we let go all that is only personal, and that we stand for the glory of our Lord's name and His interests alone." Brother Sparks also wrote this, which shows that he knew the cost of this stand: "I am sure that you will never make me or my ministry a ground of division. There is no need to fight for me; the Lord is on the Throne, and He can order things to His Own Will - while we pray and trust Him."
We have done as little editing as possible, and we have left these messages in the order they were spoken day by evening, evening by day. We have done this because we believe that the Holy Spirit spoke through His servant in those forty-two meetings. Therefore, these messages will have eternal results against the archenemy of God, and his evil hosts, as the body of Christ makes this a reality in their lives through the work of the Cross. The brother who sent us these messages wrote this: "A long time ago, I hoped that someone who appreciated brother Spark's ministry would be able to edit and print these messages, in order to serve the whole body of Christ. These transcripts are priceless treasures, only eternity can count their value! Thanks to the Lord." So it is our prayer that these messages will serve the body of Christ, and most important of all, may they give the Lord His full place.
From your brothers and sisters at Emmanuel