The Gospel Trumpet
Volume 21 – Issue 40 – October 10, 1901
(Articles of interest only)
By R. R.
Choose this day, says God in mercy,
Life eternal, and be mine;
All who will be saved and whitened,
On my bosom may recline.
Choose the love of thy dear Savior,
He’ll remove each guilty stain;
Then through God’s eternal power,
Over sin thou mayest reign.
Choose to walk the narrow highway,
God’s approval e’er to gain;
Lest thy days, as swift they’re passing,
Should be lived in vain … in vain.
Choose to dwell with Christ in glory,
‘Mid the angels and redeemed,
Or thy soul will learn in anguish,
Death was not just what it seemed.
Look upon a world of sorrow,
And behold sin’s wretched pay;
If thou serve the God of heaven,
He will bless thee, day by day.
Life is truly, at our choosing,
Happiness or bitter woe;
Bliss for aye if Yes we answer,
Mis’ry if we answer No.
Haste, O haste! Poor weary sinner,
Make the solemn choice to-day,
Ere thy hour of proffered mercy
Shall forever pass away.
By D. Otis Teasley.
Ask the majority of church members of to-day when an individual becomes a member of the church, and not one in a thousand will give a Bible answer. The Baptist would doubtless say that baptism is the door of the church, while the Methodist or some other denomination would possibly say that an individual enters the church at the time of receiving the right-hand of fellowship. We could ask the same question of every denomination in Christendom and receive an answer according to their creed; but that will not suffice. What saith the Word of God?
First, what is the door of the church? Answer: “I [Jesus Christ] am the door.” … John 10:9. What is the church? Answer: “The church, which is his body.” … Ephesians 1:22, 23. Christ is the door and his body is the church; therefore, when we enter Christ we enter the church, and we enter Christ when we are regenerated … “born again,” or, “made new.” “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature.” … 2nd Corinthians 5:17. “Except a man be born again, he can not see the kingdom of God.” … John 3:3. The positive conclusion from these two texts, is: when we become new creatures we are in Christ, and when we are born again, we are in Christ. We have before proved that when we enter Christ we enter the church; then when we are made new creatures, or born again, we become members of the church, and not by subscribing to some human creed.
We receive our membership in God’s family the same as we receive membership in our natural family … by birth. “And of Zion it shall be said, This and that man was born in her.” … Psalms 87:5. We become full members of God’s church when his Spirit inducts us into the same. “And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.” … Acts 2:47. “But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body as it hath please him.” … 1st Corinthians 12:18. We become members of God’s church when we are born again; God, by his Spirit, sets the members in the church, every one as it hath pleased him. This leaves none for the preacher to set in. Christ, when he sent his apostles to preach the kingdom of God, did not tell them to take the members into the church, but to preach the gospel: and so it is to-day; God does not authorize any man to take members into his church. This right he has reserved exclusively unto himself.
Encouragement to Assemble and Worship God.
By Emil Kreutz.
We are commanded in the New Testament to not forsake the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is. In the Psalm before us the Psalmist is describing his delight in being in the house of God. He begins thus: “How amiable are thy tabernacles, O Lord of hosts!” That is, how worthy of love, or of having our affections. Yea, he says: “My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord: my heart and my flesh cryeth out for the living God.” In the tabernacle, and in the temple at Jerusalem is where God manifested himself and communed with his people. He dwelt there, and blessed the people out of Zion. Hence the prophet had such desires to meet there and worship God with his people. The church now is called the tabernacle of God, and upon our meeting together for his worship in Jesus’ name, there will he be in the midst. Matthew 18:20. Then should we not have the same longing, yearning desire for the courts of the Lord, or the place where he has promised to meet with us? Is not this a blessed promise? … the Lord Jesus in our very midst, the center of attraction to all our soul, the one altogether lovely, the fairest among ten thousand, etc. If we were to hear that the Lord Jesus had actually come to earth and would be at a certain place on a certain occasion, would we not make every effort possible to get there? I believe all, or nearly all, would go that possibly could. Could people be made to believe a report like that? I hardly think so: not those who understand and know the Bible, because it tells us that he will not come that way. But on the other hand, do the people actually believe the promise Jesus gives us … that he will be in our very midst whenever we meet in his name? If he were to be present in person would not the people flock to our meetings? Could we find buildings or tabernacles large enough to hold them? Would any of the saints stay away from the meetings if they were a little tired, or because certain things did not go just right with them? I trow not.
Beloved children of God, it is our very privilege to have the presence of Jesus in our midst when assembled in his name to worship him … not in his bodily presence, in flesh and blood and bone, but in Spirit. The very same Holy Spirit that he was possessed with is actuating and flooding our souls with rapture and joy. Halleluiah to his name! I fear that a great many do not realize this. We should believe and exercise faith for this at all times; then we would realize the truth of the promise when we meet together in his name. Josephus says that Abel was a “lover of righteousness: and, believing that God was present in all his actions, [that is why] he excelled in virtue [over his brother Cain].” Paul tells us it was by faith. Hebrews 11:4. But faith is what brings God nigh; so we should believe that God is present with us, especially when we meet to worship him in the name of Jesus.
The presence of God in his tabernacle is what makes the Psalmist exclaim: “How amiable are thy tabernacles, O Lord of hosts!” This is why his soul longed and fainted for the courts of the Lord. Yea, he says in another psalm: “One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life [and why?], to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple.” … Psalms 27:4. Then see what gracious results would follow. Verse 5. Yea, he says: “A day in thy courts is better than a thousand,” and testifies, though he was king, “I had rather be a door-keeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.” … Psalms 84:10. The margin reads, “I would choose rather to sit at the threshold,” etc. The LXX., “I would rather be an abject [low, menial servant] in the house of God, than dwell in the tents of sinners.” In still another psalm he tells us: “I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord.” I once heard a certain sister say in regard to attending prayer-meeting, “I would not mind going, if I realized a benefit each time.” She meant, if she could realize ecstasies of joy. We may not realize a special benefit to ourselves at the very time, but perhaps we are a benefit to some one else. Even if we do not sing, pray, or testify, it is an encouragement to those who have the oversight of the work to have the presence of all the saints at the meetings. Each one is missed. I say this from experience. It is very discouraging to hold prayer-meetings or any other meeting when no one comes: it makes a poor preacher or teacher feel that perhaps the saints do not have confidence in him, or that he does not amount to anything any way, people could get along just as well without him, etc. It gives the enemy a chance to accuse him on many lines.
May the Lord stir up all the children of God everywhere, that when you have a prayer-meeting, or meeting of any kind, you may never fail to let your presence be there to encourage, if nothing else. A gracious promise is found in Malachi 3:16-18 to those who meet often and think upon the name of the Lord. No doubt you all want to be one of the Lord’s jewels, then meet the conditions, and you may. Amen.
By Viannah Crites.
“I know thy works that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew thee out of my mouth.” … Revelation 3:15, 16. How many lukewarm souls there are in the world to-day. The fire of God’s love has burned low on the altar of their hearts. Perhaps many have already been spewed out of God’s mouth and are not yet aware of the fact. Dearly beloved, it is high time to awake out of sleep and have thy vessel replenished with oil, for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. Then how sad for you to miss heaven and yet hardly know why.
We do not read that the ancient church had been committing any crimes when the message was sent unto them saying that they were lukewarm and that God intended to spew them out of his mouth. Oh, no, dear ones; but perhaps God saw they had been progressing nicely financially and were well pleased with this blessing resting upon them, and perhaps were so taken up with the cares of life while their riches were increasing that they neglected their duty to God. Perhaps they were contented to enjoy their comfortable homes on prayer-meeting nights, and if the weather was not the nicest, also stayed away from worship on Lord’s day. They perhaps saw no need of rushing against wind and tide to get to heaven, since they could pray in their own homes, forgetting that they should not forsake the assembling of themselves together, but should exhort one another daily, and so much the more as they saw the day approaching.
O dear souls, awake again; put on thy beautiful garments of salvation! These blessings of plenty to eat and wear will not save you. “If riches increase, set not your heart upon them.” Nothing but obedience to God’s Word will save. That one who says he is rich and increased with goods, and has need of nothing … he is the one whom God says is wretched and miserable, poor, and blind, and naked, and counsels to buy of him gold tried in the fire, that he may be rich, and white raiment that he may be clothed, so that the shame of his nakedness will not appear. Dearly beloved, let us all examine ourselves, and see if we are as diligent in God’s service as when we first enlisted. Are we as ready to run to any duty? Are we as ready to make a sacrifice for others’ good? Do we pray as much in secret? Do we love the prayer and praise meetings? And are we filled with God’s Spirit? Do the shouts and praises still go up in the camp of the saints as in former times? Are we so anxious to attend all the meetings as to go through cold and storm to do so? Do we try to be as patient as in former times? Are we still willing to stay away from the fairs, shows, and worldly doings? Do we dress as plain as in former days? Can we still trust the Lord for healing? Is he our all and in all? Can we forsake all to follow him? Do we love the Lord our God with all our heart, might, mind, and strength, and our neighbor as ourselves? If we can answer all these questions in the affirmative, we may rest assured that the congregations are spiritual. When they meet together for worship there will be no fault-findings, murmurings, complaining, and backbiting; but all will have the same care one for another. If one is honored, all the rest will rejoice. Each will be willing to take the lowest seat and wait for the Lord to invite him up higher. Oh, praise the Lord for salvation, and for the narrow way!
By R. Rothman.
“And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungered. And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” … Matthew 4:2-4.
When we study the life of Jesus we are impressed with the fact that all his actions and words had a deep purpose. Whatever happened, the Lord turned it into a source of blessing to us … teaching precious lessons at every step. In this conversation with Satan he teaches us a very important lesson. He gives us to understand that it is quite as important that we obtain spiritual food, as food for the body. “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” One of the old prophets said that he esteemed the Word of the Lord more than his necessary food. David said, “How sweet are thy Words unto my taste! Yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!”
One may very easily test his spirituality, by examining himself as to how much he relishes the Word of God. If one is sickly he cares for little of it, and even that does not taste very good. When we reach this point there is danger just ahead. But no one can live a life pleasing to God and utterly neglect the Word. It will mean spiritual starvation.
A precious saint of God who died a few years ago, related one of the secrets that made his life such a monument of God’s faithfulness. He said it lay in much reading of the Word. During the first three years of his Christian walk he gave only a little time to the Words of life, but after that the Bible constantly grew more interesting, and before his death he had read it through many times. This man was George Muller. He also said that at the outset, he spent the hour immediately after rising on his knees praying to God; but the Lord taught him a more excellent way. This was, to first let God talk to him through his Word. As he carefully read the New Testament its Words inspired faith in the God who made it, and unconsciously he breathed true prayers of faith while meditating on its passages. He said he read the Bible, first of all, to gain food for his own soul, not for public ministry; then, after learning the precious truths and growing fat thereon, it was easy for him to impart spiritual food to others. The preacher says: “Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil. Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter anything before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few.” … Ecclesiastes 5:1, 2. We are not heard for our much praying, but for praying the prayer of faith; and “faith cometh by the Word of God” … by reading it as well as hearing it preached.
We are to take the Word for the man of our counsel. When one has known the way of truth and turned aside from it and gone into the ways of the world, it is a sign that some other word has taken the place of God’s Word. If you question them they will quite likely quote you some worldly maxim, and imagine in their deceived hearts that they are wiser than when they followed the Lord of glory in the path of humility. For almost every event in life the Word lays down rules and advice, in the following of which lies safety for the Christian. If we give heed to the Words of wisdom our life will prove a success for ourselves and for God, but if we try some other way, it will lead us into dangerous paths, and perhaps cause us to lose our souls. “Ye can not serve God and mammon.” “A double-minded man is unstable in all his ways.” We should, after learning the teaching of the Bible on a certain line, keep it in mind and put it into practice, and thus we will have a “single eye” and our whole body will be full of light.
“The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints.” … Ephesians 1:18.
The “hope” that Paul here speaks of pertains to both this life and that beyond death. To keep encouraged in the Christian life, and to bear with patience the suffering that followers of Christ are called to endure, we must keep in mind the glorious hope that is set before us. “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” That which inspired the apostle Paul to labor faithfully through long years and suffer uncomplainingly for the sake of the gospel is for us also. He says in Romans 8:20, 21 … “For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope, because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.”
The life which the Bible demands us to live will not fail to produce effects in our lives favorable to happiness in this life. A daily practice of the laws of God will constantly tend to make us more noble, healthy, and contented. But there is something far above all we may look for in this life. Some day those who remain faithful to the end will be invested with the glorious immortality of God, when these bodies will be transformed into incorruptible substance. This means that we shall no longer be tortured with painful diseases, hindered by bodily weakness, or subject to decay. Wonderful thought!
As we look upon the works of man we are amazed at his powers. Man was created only a little lower than the angels. He has almost limitless capacities of intellect. He studies the world about him, and looks upon planets millions of miles away, penetrating with augmented eyesight into untold leagues of ether. But with all his wonderful capacities, there is a humiliating limit placed upon him. No sooner does he arrive at maturity and begin to enjoy himself fully, than decay sets in, and he has started the downward road to the dust from whence his body came. But after the final judgment the saints will be clothed with immortality, when a new life will begin, compared with which the present existence is as a brief moment.
The apostle warns his brethren not to be carried about with divers and strange doctrines, and informs them on the contrary that “it is good for the heart to be established with grace.” Much of the instability and changefulness of those who seek to serve the Lord, is due to the fact that their hearts have never been established with grace, and that they are unacquainted with Jesus Christ, who is “the same yesterday, and to day, and forever.” They feel in their spirit’s a strange unrest, a lack of something which they do not possess, and instead of flying to Jesus Christ as their refuge and the solace of their longing souls, they weary themselves, and waste their time in chasing after phantoms, and pursuing new ideas in hope of permanent content.
A man comes to such a hungry, restless soul and says, “You are not right.” “I know it,” is the reply. “You are empty, lukewarm, unfaithful, backslidden,” and the answer admits the truth of every charge. “I know what you need. You need the new light that I am commissioned to unfold. You need to learn the great principles of truth which have never been imparted to you.” And the poor, dejected soul says, “Yes, I think that must be what I need,” and at once proceeds to accept it all without a doubt. A little mental excitement, the enthusiasm of a new idea, change of associations, and the putting forth of new energies, for a time really seem to justify the thought that now the longed-for object has been attained; but presently when the novelty of the thing is ended, the poor desponding soul finds himself in the same old rut of hopeless, vain profession.
Just then another person comes and says, “I know what ails you. You are discouraged, burdened, discontented, backslidden,” all of which is freely admitted by the victim. “Now you need to take hold of the truth that I preach. This will bring you out into a large place, and give you new life.” The sufferer hears it. He knows he needs something. He supposes that this is the thing, and at once he embraces, without a doubt or question, the tissue of absurdities and mistakes which is thus pressed upon him, only to find in a little while the same results as before … emptiness and desolation.
The real need of such a person is “Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, and to-day, and forever,” not a new theory, nor a new doctrine, though error is always to be discarded, and truth is always to be sought; but the present urgent necessities of the soul are always met by a personal and living faith, a fresh and present acquaintance with Jesus Christ the Lord. When this is attained the heart rests secure, established in the grace of God. In the present assurance of divine favor there is such repose that the soul is guarded against the influence of divers and strange doctrines. Content with Christ, it seeks no higher joy or rest.
Persons possessed of health are not anxious about medicines; but when a man has pains in every bone, and tortures in every nerve; when from the crown of his head to the sole of his feet he is full of disease; then he becomes the victim of every quack who comes within his way. Says one to him, “You are sick.” … “Yes, I am.” “You have pains and aches. You have weakness and disturbances. I know what will cure you. You need a bottle of the ‘Miraculous Balsam of Immortality,’ which you can find at the apothecaries wrapped in a blue paper, price, one dollar.” The poor distressed soul listens, and says, “Yes, I think that is just what I want.” He pays his money, purchases the medicine, and swallows according to directions. Stimulated with the whiskey it contains, he really thinks himself on the high road to health. One bottle is swallowed, then another. The effect of the stimulus passes, and he finds himself again the same dejected, suffering invalid he was before. Just then there comes another counselor who says to him, “You look sick.” … “I am. I have suffered a great deal lately. I have been taking the Miraculous Balsam of Immortality, which I thought would cure me, but I seem to be no better.” “You had better throw that out of the window. I know what you need. You need the ‘Wonder Working Extract of a Thousand Healing Leaves.’ Take of that a teaspoonful three times a day, and it will surely restore you to health. You can find it everywhere, price, seventy-five cents. The poor dupe listens to his adviser, takes the medicine, experiences a temporary exhilaration, and then finds that health and comfort are as far away as ever. Again he is visited by some one who informs him that his real need is a box of the “Pills of Perpetual Painlessness,” which are never known to fail. He tries these with similar results. He purchases drugs, lotions, plasters, and no one knows what not; he tries to follow the directions, which warrant a cure if the remedies are used “externally, internally, and eternally,” and after all his cost, and care, and pains, he finds himself no better but rather worse, and abandons himself to despair.
Now, what is that man to do? What does he really need? He needs health. Let him once find every pain is gone, and every trace of disease banished from his frame, and he is no longer subject to such impositions. The vender of patent nostrums says, “You need this wonderful medicine. It will make you feel perfectly well.” “Away with your medicines,” he answers. “I feel well now.” “But it will improve your appetite. It will strengthen your nerves. It will help you to sleep well. It will make you feel young.” “My appetite is good; my nerves are strong; my sleep is perfect; I feel young as a boy, and I need none of your nostrums.” Such a man is free from the danger of experimenting in these directions. He is in health, and he needs no medicine.
So when a man has found Jesus Christ, “the same yesterday, and to-day, and forever;” when he has anchored his soul to that within the vail; when he knows whom he has believed, and has personal and present experience of the grace and love of Christ; his heart is “established with grace,” and he will not be carried about with divers and strange doctrines. If there comes to him some man with a new way of salvation, he answers, “I am saved already.” If some one imposes upon him new doctrines, new forms, new notions, and tells him he must accept them, or he can never find salvation, his answer is, “You are too late. I have found salvation now, and what are you going to do about it?” He stands upon the Rock, and fears no storm. He searches the Scriptures to know the Words of truth. He proves all things, holding fast that which is good, but he allows no man to come between his soul and his God, or to frighten him from his secure repose by threats of wrath and terrors of damnation. It is a good thing that the heart be established, and if we have found this abiding rest, our progress may be steady, and permanent, and perpetual; our path, that of the just, which is as a “shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.”
A prisoner in the West Virginia penitentiary (Moundsville) has been making use of his spare moments, and in the last few days in this way in fifteen hours has sold ninety-nine books, entitled “Behind the Prison Bars,” eighty-four of which were cloth and fifteen paper cover, also some Bibles and mottoes. This was all done by an earnest effort and canvassing within the prison-walls, among the prisoners. He fully realizes the need of the spread of the gospel, and has gone about it with a will, not only selling books, but talking salvation to the prisoners.
If such can be accomplished within the prison-walls under such strict rules and limited privileges, what should we do, who have unlimited privileges outside the prison-walls in getting the truth to the people and working for the Master? This prisoner writes as follows:
“I think for myself that the book “Behind the Prison Bars,’ meets a long-felt want, and I hope and pray that many of those who will read it on the outside will be stirred into doing something for those unfortunate men and boys who are to-day behind the prison-bars. We only wish that everybody understood us as the Gospel Trumpet Publishing Company does. We are not wholly depraved, having lost all principles of manhood … no; ten thousand times no … we still have hearts and desires of a man within our breasts, because we are created in the image of Him who gave himself a ransom for our transgressions. God leads men in very mysterious ways at times to show them where they are, and I would not take all the gold that this world contains for the experience that I have had of my Savior’s love. It was A. B. Palmer that first made me understand that it is possible for me to live a holy and pure life … a life that would please God. I can truly say that God is very precious to me, and I have devoted my life, my talents, and my all to his service. I enjoy reading my Trumpet, and I have read and reread all the books published by the Gospel Trumpet Publishing Company, in our prison library.”
Question: Will you please let me know through the Trumpet if Judas partook of the Lord’s Supper, or whether he was absent after he received the cup, as stated in John 13:30. See Matthew 26:26-28. How do you reconcile these two points?
Answer: In order to obtain a clear understanding of the scriptures relative to this subject it is necessary to study the four Gospels together and note the principal events associated with the Lord’s Supper, as given in order by each writer. It will be sufficient to note five of these events; namely, The Passover, The washing of the disciples’ feet, The exposition of Judas, The departure of Judas, and The Lord’s Supper.
It is noticeable that John mentions two events that none of the rest do; namely, the washing of the disciples’ feet and the departure of Judas. He does not mention the Lord’s Supper, though, but in the order of the events that he mentions he is in perfect harmony with Matthew and Mark and clearly shows us that after the exposition Judas went immediately out. If we now note the order and harmony of all these events given by these three writers, together, we have the question answered.
1. The Passover.
2. Washing the disciples’ feet.
3. The exposition of Judas.
4. The Lord’s Supper.
This leaves Judas absent from the Lord’s Supper. The testimony of these three writers is conclusive.
But we are now confronted with another question which needs to be considered. While Matthew, Mark, and John agree, we see that Luke mentions the exposition of Judas after the Lord’s Supper, which would lead us to believe that Judas was present; but there is only this one position to take, if we would be consistent. It is evident that Luke in his summarized account has not strictly adhered to the order of the occurrence of these events, but has simply made brief mention of some of them, regardless of their order.
Question: What is sectism, and how can you distinguish it from the church?
Answer: The term “sectism” means divisions and factions, and is applied to the divided and confused state of the ecclesiastical world to-day. The term might also be defined as “sects and their production or fruit.” In the Emphatic Diaglott (Galatians 5:20) the word “heresies” is rendered “sects,” which the apostle classifies in the catalogue of the works of the flesh. In 2nd Peter 2:1, in the German version, the term “damnable heresies” is rendered “destructive sects.” Every religious denomination or body which separates itself from the church of God by name, doctrine, or creed, either written or unwritten, is a sect or faction. Every religious body that is founded by man, that recognizes man as its head, that takes in members, that puts out members, that claims to open the door of the church, or that claims to save souls … is a sect. In short, everything of a religious nature that is not the body of Christ, is a sect.
The church is the body of Christ, and includes every saved, redeemed soul on earth or in heaven, and excludes every soul that is not saved. Christ is the Builder, Founder, Head, and Door of his church. He purchased it with his own blood … “Gave himself for it, that he might sanctify and cleans it with the washing of water by the Word, that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.” … Ephesians 5:25-27.
Question: What is antichrist, or man of sin, which was to be revealed in the last days?
Answer: It is evident that Papal Rome with all its multiplied progeny, which includes all of sectism, is antichrist. The man of sin is the pope himself, “who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.” … 2nd Thessalonians 2:4.
J. W. B.
“May I not wash in them and be clean? This question was asked by Naaman, the great captain of the Syrian host, as he made a comparison between the river Jordan and the beautiful rivers of his own country. “Are not Abana and Pharpar, rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? May I not wash in them and be clean? So he turned and went away in a rage.” … 2nd Kings 5:12. We think of this question sometimes when we hear people trying to find a better way than God’s way. Naaman thought the waters of Damascus better than those of Israel, but this was not the question at all. God’s command had gone forth through his prophet, and now obedience to God’s Word was the only way. Naaman’s proud heart at first refused this way, because it was a way of humiliation and death to self. It was seemingly such a trifling, foolish thing for him, the great honored general, to condescend to do; to dip himself seven times in those dark, murky waters. As his servants suggested, he would have been quite willing to do “some great thing,” which seemed worthy of his exalted station in life. But this little, simple thing, how nearly he let his pride make him lose the great blessing of his life! Another trouble with Naaman was that he did not see the God of Israel, but his eye was on the prophet, and he reasoned in this way, “I should have thought when he saw what a distinguished visitor he had, he would have come out to do me honor, and in some imposing way, that would have upheld my greatness, would have moved his hand over the leprous place, and called upon his God, and brought recovery.” The Lord God of Israel was the prophet’s God, but at this juncture Naaman had no thought of making him his own God. But at last, yielding to the entreaties of his servants, he went down and dipped himself seven times in Jordan, “according to the saying of the man of God.” Somewhere in that watery baptism, so typical of the humbling of ourselves unto death, Naaman found not only healing, but he found God, the source of all healing and life. It was most blessed to have his flesh come again as the flesh of a little child, but how much greater was the soul blessing which made him say to the prophet, “Behold, now I know that there is no God in all the earth, but in Israel;” and again, “Thy servant will henceforth offer neither burnt offering nor sacrifice unto other gods, but unto the Lord.” “Now I know,” not I think, or guess, or imagine, but “I know” for myself this God of Israel.
Beloved, the path of obedience is that which you must pursue if you would receive healing for your diseased body, and greater light for your longing soul. There are individual commands for each one of us. We all know where our Jordan lies, and where God is calling us to go “down.” And there must be a completeness of obedience, as is indicated by the going seven times under the water. Nothing can be left undone which God has commanded. It is the willing and obedient who are to eat the good of the land.
Sometimes in my ministry among the sick the passage in James 5:16, 17 has been referred to by some halting soul, with the question tremblingly asked: “Is there not some other way? Can I not be healed by prayer without the anointing?” And I have tried to explain the blessedness of the way of obedience, the joy of heart which it brings to yield to every last and least command of the dear Savior. And what is it that makes it hard to yield to such an easy, simple command as is contained in this passage of scripture just referred to? Is it not the same kind of pride that Naaman had when he refused to do such a seemingly foolish and insignificant thing as to bathe in the waters of Jordan? And is it not quite likely that God has made the requirement of such a nature as to test what manner of spirit we are of? It is quite true that many have been healed without the anointing with oil, but it is usually those who have had no light upon this scripture. At the time of my first healing I had never understandingly read this passage in James, so I was healed by the touch of God in answer to the prayer of faith, without any such service of consecration as the anointing implies. But as time went on I became so impressed with the beautiful significance of this ceremony that I longed for the opportunity to present my body after this sacred manner. I was even glad when a severe touch of illness came upon me, that I might yield as one of the sick to this sweet and blessed rite. It seemed to me such a definite presentation of my body to God as his temple, that I was more occupied with the thought of this than of the healing itself. I felt that the anointing was significant of the Holy Spirit, who would come in healing power upon my body, and I rested there in faith, without any care at the moment as to whether I felt better or not. After our little meeting was over, and I had said good-bye to the dear friends and to the kind brother who had acted as “elder,” I went up-stairs to my room, feeling very much exhausted, and lay down upon my bed to rest and to commune with the Lord. I was not looking for any particular manifestation of healing, but I was occupied with the Healer himself and enjoying sweet rest in my soul as I leaned my whole weight upon his promise. I had fulfilled my part of the covenant, and had he not met me in it, even though I did not see or feel it? Suddenly, I felt upon my body the soft pressure of the gentlest hand, touching me in every place where weakness and soreness remained, and bringing instantly perfect relief, while at the same moment my soul was flooded with joy and gratitude, tears rushing to my eyes, and I said in adoring love, “This is too high, too wonderful for me.” How sweet it had been to obey him, even though it led me through peculiar paths, and where all my friends could not understand, and how he had honored that obedience. Dear one, shall we not trust and obey?
… Triumphs of Faith.
By W. A. Downer.
“Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him Godspeed: for he that biddeth him Godspeed is partaker of his evil deeds.” … 2nd John 9:11.
We are living in perilous times, when the communicants of Babylon do not discern between them that serve God and them that serve him not, and in many cases they bid the children of the devil Godspeed. But we are told to try the spirits, whether they are of God, and they can be tried only by God’s Word. The burden of the prayers of Babylon to-day is, “O Lord, forgive us our many sins.” But the precious Word teaches that “whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God.” The doctrine of Christ is encased in the New Testament. “He shall save his people from their sins;” “Awake to righteousness, and sin not;” “He that committeth sin is of the devil.” Thus it is proven, by these and other scriptures, that God’s people do not commit sin. Those that do not teach nor live a life free from sin are not of God.
Not only did Christ teach salvation from sin, but he taught that his followers should be one. Christ, in addressing the Jews, said, “And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.” … John 10:16. The other sheep which he was to bring are the Gentiles; but Jesus declares “there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.” By the false teaching of Babylon to-day, people are made to believe that God recognizes different pens of sheep … the Baptist pen, with a pool in one corner and a close communion rail in another; a Methodist pen, with a bowl of water to sprinkle upon the heads of ignorant children (which has not New Testament foundation). Another, the Presbyterian pen, where the predestinated ones are. A Catholic pen, whose inmates are saved through the intercession of priests. So, according to sectish teaching, God has about 600 pens, all recognized. But let the doctrine of Christ condemn these false teachings. “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou has sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me.” … John 17:20-23. “Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” … 1st Corinthians 1:10. In the preceding passages it is plainly declared that God’s children must be one. “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your houses, neither bid him Godspeed.” Many of us have had personal experience on this line. After we came out of sectism and made a stand for the one body, sectarians came to try to weaken us in the faith. We gave them the Word of God, and they became very much in earnest. Upon departing some bade us Godspeed, but we could not wish them the same and be loyal to God’s Word, “For he that biddeth him Godspeed is partaker of his evil deeds;” and we are to “have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”
The camp-meeting here was truly a time of refreshing from the presence of the Lord. God manifested himself to us in the first service, and continued to bless the Word through the meeting. Sister Johnson, Brothers Porter, Johnson, Stanka, Eyster, and others were used in the ministry of the Word. Sweet harmony prevailed throughout the meeting, and the unity, purity, and power of the gospel were manifest. Twenty-one were baptized and about eighty happy saints washed each others’ feet. May God keep us all true to him.
A. B. Stanberry.
Weatherford, Oklahoma, September 20.
Our souls are being made to rejoice in God’s holy love. Since the Eugene, Indiana camp-meeting we have been enjoying a season at home with the dear ones. We are praising God for his goodness. Our little boy three years old ran a rusty nail into his foot, which, I am sure, would have resulted in blood poisoning, as did the same thing with a little girl who lives close by. When he went to bed at night he prayed God to heal his foot, and he answered the simple prayer. To him be all the glory. We expect to go forth as the Lord leads. Dear ones, pray that we keep humble.
Harry and Sadie Tyler.
We have had a most blessed meeting during the assembly here. The Word of God was sent forth in the power of the Holy Ghost, and sinners were made to tremble and repent. People were saved, sanctified, and healed, and the little ones walking in the unity and fellowship of the Holy Ghost were edified and built up in the faith. The general testimony was praise to God for the privilege of being present. Some came quite a distance to attend the meeting. Praise God for his faithfulness!
A. H. Martin.
Lansing, Michigan, September 23.
We have just closed a meeting at Morristown, which was a grand victory for the truth. There were three conversions, and four were sanctified and two immersed. They do not hesitate to declare their freedom from Babylon. Any of God’s true ministers passing through Morristown should not fail to inform Brother William Hodges, and you will find a hearty welcome. We came from Morristown here, and found some of the dear ones moving on nicely, and some not advancing so well. Several hands were raised last night for prayer. We are expecting a good meeting. From here we expect to go to Green County, and from there wherever the Lord may lead. Remember us in prayer.
William A. Sutherland,
W. P. Long,
J. J. Smith.
Saint Clair, Tennessee, September 28.
We praise God for full and free salvation, and for victory in our souls, through Jesus. For some time we have enjoyed the privilege of being with the church at this place. Since we have come we have not ceased to hold prayer-meetings and the Lord is blessing our souls and edifying the saints here. We had an ordinance-meeting, in which twenty-one took part in the washing of the saints’ feet and the breaking of bread. God wonderfully fulfilled his promise … “If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.” … John 13:17. We were made to rejoice with joy unspeakable and to give God praise for his wonderful love.
God’s little ones here are truly encouraged and efforts are being made to send means for the free-literature fund, to spread the gospel. May God help his ministers everywhere to encourage the saints on this line, that the work of God may prosper. If every congregation would lay up on the first of the week as the Lord had prospered them, much good would be done. Brethren, do not fail to see to this. Since God has opened this way, let us all work with our means to help this work along, that we may have jewels in our crowns when we come into glory. May the Lord bless and prosper all, and put a willing heart in them; for God loves a cheerful giver. So let us give the first fruits of our labors unto God, and he will abundantly bless our souls. We expect to leave here in the near future, the Lord willing, for other fields of labor, to do all we can for perishing souls. Pray that we keep humble so that the Lord can use us.
Charles and Elta Webber.
Columbus, Kansas, October 1.
Guaymas, Sonora, Mexico, September 24.
We desire to inform those who are interested, that the above is our post-office address. Two parties have written to us after having some trouble to obtain our address, owing to its having been omitted in our last letter. So in accordance with their suggestion we cheerfully give it. We are glad to report a constant victory in our souls, also in our bodies and in the work. We have just passed through a long, hot summer, and just now, although the thermometer registers eighty-five degrees at ten o’clock, the cool breezes are blowing from the north; yes, blowing hard enough to almost take the shakes off our roof. It shows us the change has come, and the welcome cool weather begun.
We have heard from only a few concerning buying the new press, type, etc., for the printing office, yet we have seen the cloud as big as a man’s hand. Our faith has been strengthened, and we are encouraged. We have had to live, and while we live very economically, yet it has taken considerable of the means sent in to keep us. Perhaps if the dear ones who are going to help us out would be a little more prompt in sending in their offerings, we would have the things bought and would not have so much time to use the money before we had the needed amount. Brother James E. Wallace, of Goodland, Kansas, writes us that he and wife intend to come in about thirty days to help us in the work. He brings with him also a gasoline engine. Sister Hines, of Vesta, Washington, is expected to be with us in a very short time. Our hearts are gladdened by the indications of the “showers of blessings.” Praise God! By the way, another machine has been added to our list of needs. We need a good stapler, or wire-stitcher, to stitch small books. We are now sending out 2,000 copies of the paper each issue. Dear ones, help us with your prayers and means, as the Lord directs. Yours in Jesus.
B. F. and G. C. Elliott.
We are still in the glorious service of our Master, with excellent health in our bodies, and are saved and sanctified by the mighty power of God in our souls, for which we praise and thank our dear Father.
Wife and I left Illinois July 22, to go to Kentucky. We had to stop over night in Indianapolis, Indiana. We heard of the meetings of the “Pentecost Band,” and the Lord impressed us to go out and see them. I had formerly been connected with them while in the Free Methodist sect. I found them still in the old sect way of worship, only deeper in the deceptions of the devil. Oh, the darkness that prevailed in their midst! The leader did not want us to do so much as testify in the meetings. He had it so arranged that all the time was taken; but the Lord opened the way for us to give in our testimony of what he has done for us, and warn them of their sect building. We also did a little private work. How I praise and thank God for deliverance from the awful delusions of the devil!
We came on to Cementville, Indiana, where we assembled with the little church for about one week. Sister Myers, of Louisville, Kentucky, assisted in this meeting. We then went to Louisville and met with the church in a week’s meeting which was owned and blessed of the Lord. The church is in a prosperous condition. May God bless them all and keep them on a forward move for him. We came on to Washington County, where we found many friends of this glorious truth awaiting our arrival, as we had promised them last summer to return this year if the Lord so willed. Our first meeting was held at Rockbridge Baptist meeting-house, and lasted two weeks. Many are standing by the truth and see the evils of sectism. Some few consecrated in this meeting. We went about ten miles from there, to Hillsboro, and held meetings about ten weeks. Some good was accomplished in this meeting also.
We then came to Willisburg, where we are now engaged in a very interesting meeting. The Christian sect closed their meeting-house against us; so some of our friends fixed up an old shop, where we are holding forth the bread of life. They, or at least some of them, no doubt thought they had us shut out of their little village; but the Lord rebuked the devil and gave us this place. The meeting is started with good interest and attendance. Kentucky is a great place for people to attend meetings. If the Lord sends any one this way to help us, we shall be very thankful. We need help, especially in singing. Willisburg will be our address for some time yet, the Lord willing. We earnestly ask prayers for us and the work in these parts. Love to all in Christ Jesus. Amen.
W. H. and Anna Cheatham.
Willisburg, Kentucky, September 30.
The everlasting peace of God is abiding in my soul to-day. In Waynesfield, Ohio, while in company with Brothers F. Rosenberry and S. A. Yoder, last November, the Lord gave me to understand that I was to go to Texas, also to California again. I continued in the work in Ohio until April, when I felt God directed me to go, and so I went. At Dublin, Texas and in the surrounding country some profitable meetings were held. Afterwards, in company with Brothers H. E. Watson and J. T. Holland and wife, some very precious meetings were held in Eastland County. At one place near Ranger the pure Bible had never been preached before and it was gladly received by those attending. The brethren who remained after I had left for California stated that several were baptized and earnest petitions for another meeting were given. Brother E. Watson and I held a meeting at Necessity, Stephens County, where the Word was gladly received by several and requests made for another meeting. The people kindly took us into their homes and cared for us. Many thanks to them for their kindness to the ministers of God.
While on my way to California I visited the church at Mesa, Arizona, over one Lord’s day. Thank God for the work he has done since I left there in May, 1899. A precious assembly of saints meet regularly in Mesa to worship God in Spirit and in truth. I had the pleasure of meeting and making the acquaintance of Sister Lena Shoffner, whom God was using to help establish the church there. After a precious visit, though very short, I came on to Los Angeles, California. Immediately a burden of the work came upon me, and my cries for help, with the many other prayers that had already been going to God, prevailed, and, praise his name, whom should he send but Sister Lena Shoffner and Brother H. Slaughter, one of the first fruits of her labors in Missouri. Thank God for ministers that get their orders from heaven! Brethren, this is where we should live … where we can get our directions from above.
The work here is beginning to prosper again, and the glory and fire which followed the pure, uncompromising preaching of the Word in the power of the Holy Spirit, nine or ten years ago, is just the same to-day. Praise God! We desire the effectual fervent prayers of the saints in behalf of the work here.
A very profitable meeting lasting about two weeks was held in a school house near Artesia (about twenty-five miles from Los Angeles), where we believe God will raise up a church. The Word went forth in the power of the Holy Spirit. Ministers present were Sister Lena Shoffner, Brother H. Slaughter, and myself. Any one wishing to correspond may address us 497 East Third Street, Los Angeles, California.
J. D. Hatch.
Los Angeles, California, September 24.
We are praising God for salvation that keeps us saved from sin, gives us peace at home, and makes us ready for heaven. We take the Lord for our physician and keeper. Pray that we ever be humble and obedient in everything.
Nean and Lena Luker.
I wish to testify to what the Lord has done for me. He saves and heals me, for which I give him the praise. It is sweet to trust in Jesus and take him at his Word. I am determined to stand true to God. Let us be always ready, for we know not at what hour our Savior may come. Pray for me.
I am trusting in the Lord. I sought him four years ago, and know he saves and keeps me. His presence is with me all the time. Bless the Lord! My family are not saved. I love to read the books and papers and lend them to others. I wish some one would come here and preach holiness. Pray for my husband and children, and that I be humble.
Mrs. Harriet A. Hare.
Burgess, North Carolina.
I am praising God for free and full salvation and deliverance in my soul. The Lord wonderfully saved me from sin and brought me out of darkness, and has translated me into the marvelous light which is in Christ Jesus. I praise God that I have no condemnation, as I am in harmony with his Word and my life is entirely hid away with Christ in God. I enjoy telling what the Lord has been, and is yet, doing for me. He also heals me, for which I give him the praise. Pray that I continue faithful.
Lula Bell Oliver.
I have many things to praise the Lord for. He saved me from all of my actual transgressions and by a second and distinct work of grace sanctified me. He heals all my sicknesses, and causes me to triumph over all sin. Praise his dear name forever! Some months ago I requested the saints to pray for my unsaved wife. The Lord directed me to take her to the Jeffersonville camp-meeting, which I did, and he heard the prayers of the saints and saved her from all her sins, and she came home rejoicing in a Savior’s love, for which we give the Lord all the praise. Pray that we be kept meek and humble and always doing our Master’s will.
I am saved from sin, sanctified, and walking in all the light that God shines on my pathway. I am glad I found Jesus precious to my soul. He heals me, and keeps me every day. Praise his holy name! We can not praise God too much for his goodness to us. I have been serving him three years, and am not tired yet, and never expect to be, as I find I need Jesus every day. I trust him in time of sickness and tribulation, and am standing on his promises. There was a time when I rejected the Word of God and the plan of salvation; but I was made to know that there is a saving fountain, and that it was either salvation or hell, and I accepted salvation. Praise the Lord!
Point Pleasant, Missouri.
I am glad that I can report victory in the precious name of Jesus over the power of sin and the devil. I know that his precious blood has cleansed me from all sin. There are only a few of us here, and the devil does all he can to pull us down; but greater is He that is in us than he that is in the world. We do not have much true preaching here, as the country is full of people who believe in sinning a little. But the Bible tells us, “He that committeth sin is of the devil.” It also tells us that, “Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he can not sin, because he is born of God.” … 1st John 3:9. Pray that the Lord use me and all I have to his glory. Also pray for my loved ones that are unsaved.
I am still saved, and am praising the Lord for what he has done and is doing for me. He has certainly been a present help in every time of need. A year ago I was saved in a meeting held by some dear brethren and sisters. I was a backslider at the time, and saw that they had more peace and joy than I had. Before the meeting began I thought I could not keep saved, as I would meet with opposition and lose friends. When the Word of God went forth I tried to fight off the conviction, but the Lord kept on with the work until I became in earnest, when he saved me. I am saved yet.
I attended the Neosho Falls, Kansas camp-meeting, and there the Lord sanctified me. Praise his name! I was the first one that knew it, too. I have not heard the Word of God preached since the camp-meeting, but I have read it. I thank the Lord that it is as well with me as it is. I know of no saints here, and I pray that God will send a minister here, as the truth is needed badly. I desire the earnest prayers of the saints.
William M. Brown.
Kansas City, Kansas.
I am saved and kept by the power of God. The Lord has been my shepherd almost six years. He convicted me of my sins, and when I sought his saving grace he spoke peace to my troubled soul. Praise his dear name! During childhood I feared God; but as I grew older, my heart became hardened and filled with pride. Ofttimes while in protracted meetings the Spirit of God knocked at my heart, but I did not allow him to enter. At times I called upon God to have mercy upon me, but I was not willing to break loose from the world and let people see that I was a Christian. During this time my mother was a sufferer from chronic diseases which made her almost an invalid. She was a devoted Christian and walked in all the light she had. She often said she longed to see her children converted, and at times when we came home from meeting we found her weeping for us. Yet my heart was rebellious. But her prayers were held in remembrance, and God’s Spirit sought after me until I yielded to him. All glory to his name! He pardoned all my sins, and I realized I was truly a child of God.
Yet I knew very little about living for God. I did not know how to live free from all sin. The Spirit of the Lord led me to be baptized, and my heart was so burdened I could not rest. At last a minister was found that would baptize me. I would not join Babylon, as I had heard some preaching on that line. In a short time I heard that the saints were holding a meeting close by, and I attended one Sunday night. It seemed to me that I never heard such preaching before. After the sermon, I went forward and consecrated my all to God, and the sweet assurance came into my soul that the gift was accepted.
I shall never forget the time when the Lord sanctified me, as he did so much for me. It seemed to be natural for me to have family worship, pray in public, sing, and testify, while before it seemed burdensome. It also seemed just natural to trust my body with God for healing. Though friends and relatives looked upon me with wonder, I had found the pearl of great price, which was dearer to me than all the world. God says, “I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” … 2nd Corinthians 6:16. We read that the dwelling-place of God was in the ark and tabernacle with the children of Israel, and afterwards in the temple at Jerusalem. But now the Holy Ghost dwells in the hearts of men and women. “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.” … 1st Corinthians 3:16, 17. When God sanctifies our souls he destroys every element that hinders our spiritual progress, and takes full control of our hearts. It is then our meat and drink to do the will of God. It is no more we that live, but Christ that liveth in us. Praise his dear name!
Though God has permitted me to go through some battles and fiery tests while traveling the narrow way, I realize that Jesus is our captain and will safely guide us. “This is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.”
Dear ones, let us march to the front of the battle and shout the overcomers’ song in Jesus’ name. Since I have been following Jesus he has healed me of many different afflictions. “If two of you shall agree on earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them.” … Matthew 18:19. I had chills and fever and called for the saints, who prayed and laid hands on me, and I was healed. At another time I had pneumonia and could not rise up in bed. “They shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” The Lord wonderfully healed me, through faith in his promises.
Last winter I was instantly healed of severe cramps of the stomach, through faith in the promise, “If ye abide in me, and my Words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.” … John 15:7.
On September 1, the saints agreed with me and laid on hands for the healing of a summer trouble, and the God that can not lie, verified his promise in my mortal body, Praise God! “I am the Lord that healeth thee.” … Exodus 15:26. He has done much for myself and children, and I mean to live for him while I stay here on earth. The way grows brighter. More the battles to fight, more the victories to win, and we are made better and stronger soldiers for the Lord. Let us be of good courage, for soon our warfare will be over, and we will meet above, to sing the praises of God forevermore.
Lillie B. Thurmond.
I am praising the God of all grace for his wonderful works to the children of men. How blessed to put our trust in such a One! It seems to me that lately I have realized more than usual the beauty of God’s keeping power. How sweet to confidently entrust ourselves to him at the beginning of the day, and then, as the evening time closes round us, to review the events of the day as it has passed into eternity and realize that he has really kept us from all sin! Only those who live such lives can know the beauty of the same.
It is very probable that all the Trumpet readers, and especially the saints, are interested in the work in Mexico. About two and a half years ago I began to read letters and reports from there by Brother and Sister Elliott. At that time they were receiving severe persecutions. I had not been saved very long then, and as I read their letters I thought, “Oh, I would not like to go to Mexico as a gospel worker!” Soon they called for helpers, and it seemed as if the Lord just put the question to me, “Would you be willing to go?” At first I hesitated, but he kept it before me until I said, “Yes, Lord; I will if you want me to.” That was about two years ago, but never from that time until this has the work of Mexico been long from my mind. At that time I did not receive the summons to go, but became willing to do that or anything else God might show me. I began corresponding with Brother and Sister Elliott, asking them to agree with me in prayer that God would make it very clear to me if he wanted me to go. I thought perhaps he would send me last year, yet at that time I did not feel at perfect liberty to go, for I could not say I was certain that it was his will. So I just waited and trusted, and realized more than at first that I had many things to learn before I was qualified for such work. The dear Lord has been teaching me some hard but precious lessons, which I have but slowly learned, I fear.
A few weeks ago I came to the point where is seemed I must have an answer from God in regard to my work for this winter. I went before him in fasting and prayer (See Acts 13:1-3) and greater earnestness than ever before, with real faith, believing he would make the path of duty clear. Of course, he did. I can hardly tell how, but I have the divine conviction in my soul that it is my duty to go to Mexico, as clearly as that I am sanctified. Thank God!
Dear saints, I am leaving parents, brothers and sisters, together with dear friends, to go among those I have never seen, and I do need your earnest prayers. What a consolation to realize that the prayers of God’s saints are back of one, and that the Father, Son, and the Holy Ghost are with him, and will be to the end if he is true! Let me request of you that you remember the poor heathen of Mexico. Ask God to give us much love, patience, and wisdom in dealing with them. Also ask him to make us real Holy Ghost workers.
HARLESS. … Sister Laura Harless died September 23, at 8 o’clock A. M.; aged 32 years. She had been living a Christian the best she knew how in the so-called Christian church; but Brother J. T. Holland and wife and Brother H. E. Watson came to our community with the everlasting gospel of this reformation, and she saw and accepted the true light and was wonderfully established in the truth. She suffered twelve months or more with that dread disease consumption. She was in an awful condition, unable to be out of bed except in a very few instances, before the meeting. We offered prayer to Almighty God for her healing, and the Lord did wonderfully check the disease, stopping the fever of 105 degrees and checking the pain and cough. She was enabled to attend the meeting, which lasted some fifteen days, missing only three services because of rain, etc. She was wonderfully blessed by accepting the truth, and her husband was also won to the true way. She was able to walk out to her neighbor’s house the Sunday evening before she died. Monday night she ate a hearty supper and sat up and talked cheerfully with her husband for an hour and a half, and slept well until three o’clock next morning, when she awoke her husband, complaining of a severe pain in her shoulder, which later extended to her body. He became alarmed and sent for mother and me and a neighbor lady. Upon our arrival at her home we read a few texts of Scripture and then had prayer and left it all in God’s hands. She thanked and praised God all the time as long as she lived. The Lord saw fit to take her home to himself, out of her troubles. She waved her hands and looked upward as though she saw some one coming from the skies to take her home. God grant we all may live in such a manner that we can leave a like testimony. I shall never forget the scene. May the Lord help her bereaved husband to get Bible salvation and complete victory in his soul. “Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord.” … Revelation 14:13.
Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases. … Psalms 103:3.
I praise the Lord for his goodness to me. My eyes were so dim that I could scarcely see to read the coarse print in my Bible. I was anointed at the last camp-meeting at Daisy, and the Lord restored my eyesight. I can now see to read not only the coarse print, but also the fine print in my Bible. Praise the Lord forever! My baby was also anointed, and is now sound and well. Oh, how can we praise the Lord enough for his goodness to us! I am saved and sanctified by two distinct works of grace. Praise the Lord! Pray for me and the little church here.
Healed of Cough.
I wish to glorify God by testifying to his healing power. I had a very bad cough for nearly three months … so bad that it was thought I had consumption. The brethren anointed me and prayed for me twice, but I became worse each time. Then in August I had chills and fever. As there are no saints near, I thought I would send to the Trumpet Office for an anointed handkerchief. Praise God, on the day the handkerchief was sent to me I grew better. I have not had a chill since, and my cough is almost well. Praise the Lord for his goodness!
Mrs. S. Covert.
West Virginia, September 21.
Savior, Sanctifier, and Healer.
I wish to glorify God by testifying to the healing of my body. While at the Burket camp-meeting I was anointed, according to the command in James 5:14, 15 for a growth, and it was healed. It has disappeared. The Lord did it; I did not resort to medicine or the surgeon’s knife. To God be all the glory. I am glad we have such a complete Savior as Jesus, “the same yesterday, and to-day, and forever.” He is also my Sanctifier and Healer. I have not taken medicine for over three years. Pray that I keep humble and obedient, always abounding in the work of the Lord.
A. J. Mitchell.
Prayer of Faith Offered.
We are praising the Lord for his wonderful kindness to us and our family. About one year ago I was saved and sanctified, and am praising the Lord to-day for the wonderful mercy he has bestowed upon us. Husband is justified and is seeking sanctification. We have taken the Lord for our physician, and he heals us every time.
A few weeks ago our little boy was thrown from a horse and severely injured. The news came to me that he was killed. But the Lord seemed to say to me: “He is not dead.” When I reached him he seemed to be struggling for his last breath. My sister and I fell upon our knees and began to pray that the will of God be done. He soon became conscious and we carried him into the house. Some one sent a doctor to see him, but we refused the medicine, saying the Lord would heal him.
Next day he was able to sit up, but his head and face were terribly bruised. He relapsed twice, owing to the pain in his head, and fever. We prayed for him both times, and he was healed without having taken any medicine. He is now well and hearty, and we are giving God all the praise and glory for it. Bless his dear name!
I. A. and J. H. Powers.
Antlers, Indian Territory,
Healed of Various Afflictions.
I am saved and sanctified to-day. The blessed Lord is also my healer. I had dyspepsia for two years, and grew worse and worse. In the year 1898 I had a doctor, but he did me no good. In 1899 I used fifteen dollars’ worth of patent medicines, and in the latter part of the same year had another doctor and took seven dollars’ worth of his prescription, but it failed to effect a permanent cure. Then I was sick for two week. While pondering over the Bible I found in Jeremiah 17:5: “Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the Lord.” I began to look at the road I had traveled, and saw I was trusting in man. Then I read James 5:13-15: “Is any among you afflicted? Let him pray. Is any merry? Let him sing psalms. Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.” I was afflicted; I prayed. I was sick; I also sent for the elders (those whom I knew to be true). They anointed me and prayed over me. The fifteenth verse says: “And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up.” Bless his dear name forever! I arose immediately. That was in February, 1901, and I have not taken any medicine since. There is nothing so precious to me as Jesus; I am happy with him alone.
About three weeks ago my dear little babe was taken sick. I prayed to God, but it did not get any better. My wife wanted me to go for a doctor, and I did so to please her. Yet the child grew worse. I said to my dear wife: You must quit giving so much medicine; we must trust God. We quit giving medicine and prayed. The child is, oh, so much better to-day, and is growing fat. Praise God for his goodness!
Dear saints, put your trust in Jesus and he will carry you through. Pray that we be kept at Jesus’ feet.
W. J. M. Ginn.
Delivered From the Jaws of Death.
I am praising God that he saves and sanctifies my soul, and I wish to tell of his dealings with me in his love and faithfulness. I was taken sick July 5, and was sick five weeks with malarial intermittent fever. But I did not think of taking medicine. The first night I requested prayer, and we felt that the Lord rebuked the disease. As it was bedtime, I thought I would not get up until morning. In the morning the old symptoms were there, and I thought I would wait till I felt better, instead of taking God at his Word as I should have done, and resisting the devil. So, of course, I lost the victory and kept getting worse. Some time after, the Lord gave me the witness of healing again, one night, and said to me: Why do you not say you are healed? I thought: I am well, and told husband I felt like a different person. In the morning there were the old symptoms again, and I looked at them instead of the Lord, and doubted him the second time.
I went on suffering until the Lord let me down into the jaws of death. I began to get numb, and some of my features were set. I felt that I had but a few moments to live unless God delivered me, and that there was no time to call in any one for prayer. Husband and I were alone, and we began to pray, and the Lord helped me lay hold of the promises. He had shown me that my work was not done yet and helped me sing in faith two hymns nearly through, on divine healing, and gave me this verse with sweet assurance:
“Tho’ my faith was very weak,
Jesus said so sweet and kind,
I will surely heal you ev’ry whit,
And will break the chains that bind.”
I realized truly that my body seemed bound as with chains. I felt some better and began to act faith and resist the devil steadfast in the faith, in real earnestness. I began to wash and rub myself as hard as I could with the little strength I had, to get the blood in circulation. I then dressed myself and husband helped me down stairs. The Lord kept encouraging me, but it was a desperate fight. When I got down stairs I was very much exhausted. I knew God wanted me to fight the good fight of faith, and as we went out and sat down on the porch I looked out on the fields ready to harvest and was reminded of the words of Jesus: “Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.” “The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few. Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth laborers into his harvest.” … John 4:35; Luke 10:2.
That was great encouragement, but I was not through with the trial of faith yet. I had lessons yet to learn, and “it must needs be” that I be quiet before the Lord in order to learn them. I realized if the Lord had raised me up speedily I would not have learned the lessons. I was too much like Martha … cumbered with the cares of life … and not enough like Mary; so I learned to wait upon God and be still. Though I afterwards was so low that the dear ones despaired of my life, the Lord kept me with an unwavering faith. Though I heard some one say they did not think I would ever get up when I was first taken, it had no effect upon me. I knew and kept telling them that God would raise me up and let me go to the Burket camp-meeting, and that we would have a blessed meeting, which came to pass. Praise God! They thought it looked impossible, but I had learned to look to God, and not at circumstances. I could truly say the trial of my faith was more precious than gold, and could praise and thank God in and for all things. See 1st Thessalonians 5:18; Ephesians 5:20. I was made to deeply feel how the great loving heart of God is deeply grieved and pained if we doubt in the least and do not take him at his Word. He wants us to be simple children, and humble, and ask in simple faith and receive. As I awoke one day the Spirit whispered, “Do not want.” Then came the words so sweet and precious, “They that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing.” It filled my heart with joy to see how the dear Lord is just waiting to pour out his blessings upon us. He is not willing for us to be in want, like the prodigal son who wanted to feed on husks, but he says to his children, “All that I have is thine.” … Luke 15:31. Glory be to his dear name! May the Lord help us to praise him more and more. I thanked the Lord for the prayers of the dear saints scattered abroad. I could feel the effect of them in soul and body every little while … a real uplifting and increase of faith. Praise God! I thank all the dear ones who took such an interest in my behalf.
Another lesson I learned, was: When God heals us and cleanses our blood, he expects us to keep it pure by taking proper care of these temples of the Lord; and not eat or drink anything that we know is not healthful for the body, nor make a god of our stomach (Philippians 3:19), but be temperate in all things. Not live to eat, but eat to live. “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.” … 1st Corinthians 10:31. “And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting [excess in eating and drinking], and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.” … Luke 21:34. God help the dear saints to be real examples on this line. We need to earnestly search our hearts to see that everything is clear before God; then we have confidence toward him (1st John 3:21-23), and it is easy to take him at his Word. May the Lord help us to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of our life, to behold his beauty and inquire in his temple. See Psalms 27:4.
Our permanent address is Grand Junction, Michigan.
While men are testing the Bible, the Bible tests them. While they are criticizing the Book, the Book is condemning them. While they search for its flaws, the Book discovers their sins. The man who claims that the Bible is a fraud, is more likely to be a fraud himself. The man who thinks the Bible was concocted by deceivers and imposters, may be judging its authors out of his own heart. Ungodly men hate God’s Word. Men whose deeds are evil love darkness rather than light. Men who love lies, and spend their days and nights in reading them, have in them some subtle affinity for falsehood, which naturally breeds dislike and hatred for the truth.
“Tell me,” says Ryle, “what the Bible is to a man, and I will generally tell what he is. This is the pulse to try … this is the barometer to look at, if we would know the state of the heart. I have no notion of the Spirit dwelling in a man, and not giving clear evidence of his presence. And I believe it to be a signal evidence of the Spirit’s presence when the Word is really precious to a man’s soul. When there is no appetite for the truths of the Scripture, the soul can not be in a state of health. There is some serious disease. Reader, what is the Bible to you? Is it your guide, your counselor, your friend? Is it your rule of faith and practice? Is it your measure of truth and error, of right and wrong? It ought to be so. It was given for this purpose. If it is not, do you really love your Bible?”
Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholds him with his hand. The salvation of the righteous is of the Lord: he is their strength in time of trouble. … Psalms 37:24, 39.
There are many people in the world who meditate on the wonderful works of God and long for immortal glory, but who are not in the path which leads to it. Some people believe they are fitting themselves for glory when they cultivate their minds, at the same time omitting the one thing needed … the cleansing power of the blood of Christ. But thanks be unto God, the truth enlightens us as to what way of approach God approves of. The sinful hearts of men seem naturally to take the wrong course in seeking God. God says, “Your ways are not my ways, neither are your thoughts my thoughts.” The way to win immortal glory is to patiently follow in the footsteps of Jesus.
There are different ways of studying the Word. One is what might be called an historical way, the other a spiritual way. Those who are devoid of the Spirit, hunt up a lot of history of ancient Bible lands, and learn many curious things, but fail to get food to nourish their souls. Others read the sacred page with the inspiration of God in their hearts, and are built up in the most holy faith. It is our privilege to have the Holy Spirit for our teacher, who is the best Commentator, taking the things of Christ and showing them to us as only he can. Bless the Lord! “I rejoice at thy Word, as one that findeth great spoil. I hate and abhor lying: but thy law do I love. . . Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.” … Psalms 119:162-165.