Archive for June 27, 2013

Arguing Across Generations   Leave a comment


Above:  The Author on Sunday Afternoon, June 16. 2013


Typing my great-grandfather’s sermon outlines

then publishing them,

learning who he was a century ago,

I do find

that often I argue with him

as a-typing I go.


He undervalued secular education;

a fact is a fact, I say,

and pure knowledge has great worth.


He held traditional views on the roles of women;

they were wrong then and remain so today.


Roman Catholicism he did insult and condemn;

From Holy Mother Church do I borrow heavily,

even very heartily.


He favored revivalism and condemned ritualism;

I use Prayer Books and wish my parish used incense more often;

to altars and crosses I bow,

and I do not think that I should have to explain how

such practices are good.

Criticisms of them I dismiss

as one who has survived negative encounters with poorly-informed critics could;

them I prefer to leave alone, for that is best.


To preserve and share family history is my goal;

to learn more as I proceed,

I know and am told,

my mind does truly feed.




Some Germane Posts:


Procrastination   1 comment


Above:  Antonius Felix


Acts 24, 25

1.  Felix was convicted of his sin.  Paul preached the gospel and Felix became alarmed.  What an hour in his life!  God’s mercy shown him in this conviction.  But he put off repentance.  Why?

(1)  Unpleasant to turn the eye inward.

(2)  Or unwilling to give up some darling sin.

(3)  Or thought later would do.  Thus duped, many have been lost.  Now is God’s set time to save you.

2.  What is a convenient season?

(1)  Not a time devoid of care–are none.

(2)  It is any hour God calls.  Without it no one could repent, when he does any soul that will can turn to Him.  His call is the only indispensable thing.

3.  Is this, then, a convenient season?  Does a single influence move you toward Him?  Felix heard Paul again, but we read of no further conviction.  Do not be a Felix in putting it off, lest you be a Felix in finding the conviction no more.

“Go away?” when your doom would be forever sealed; no comfort, no hope, no song, no light; subject to hell and damnation forever?

Rush to Him now for mercy now ere it be too late.


The Care of the Soul   3 comments

1 Peter 2, 11

1.  We are only sojourners & pilgrims here.  For a while we tabernacle here, but this is not our permanent abode.  Our care must be to further ourselves spiritually.  Conduct here relates to this & the future life.

2.  The soul is of supreme importance.  This is man’s glory over the lower animals.  Morals determine destiny.  “The soul,” not “the flesh,” is of greatest worth.

3.  There certainly are “lusts”–desires that war against the soul.  It is a fact of revelation & everyday experience–see 1 Jno. 2, 13-17.  We must be open-eyed here.  We have enemies and must be on our guard lest they harm us.

4.  Our lives should be wrought out carefully for the good of the soul.  Every tendency that is away from God should not be allowed.

In all bodily exercise and mental conquest all that hinders the soul’s highest development must be outlawed; the direct conquest of the vices of the heart is supremely urgent.

5.  Do it also for the sake of your influence (v. 12).  Else you will be a stumbling block.  Live so that God can boast of you to the devil himself–Job 1, 8 & 2, 3.


Grow…In Knowledge   2 comments


Above:  Ocean Surf, Circa 1907

Published and Copyright Claimant = Detroit Publishing Company

Image Source =  Library of Congress


Reproduction Number = LC-D4-70213



The Wesleyan Christian Advocate was the news organ of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, in Georgia.




2 Peter 3, 18

1.  Growth is characteristic of all life.  Arrested growth is the beginning of death.  This is a universal law.

2.  The mind of man is capable of constant growth in knowledge.  It has no deadline beyond which it cannot learn something more.  This is especially true of the Christian.  His grasp of spiritual things does not relax.

3.  Religion is a vast ocean no one can fully know.  Its treasures are exhaustless.  There is a constant thrill to him who presses on to “know Him and the power of his resurrection,” etc.  (Phils. 3, 10)  Jesus Christ is the object of our quest.

4.  How know more of Him?

(1)  By studying His word.  There we see Him display His power, hear His wisdom, and see His Divine nature.

(2) By use if the means of grace.  There we meet Him in personal contact.

(3)  By knowing what He is doing in the church today.  The religious press is a means of grace to those who use it wisely, and ought to have a large place in one’s education.  Read good books and our [those of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South] own periodicals.  No house should ever be without the Advocate.


The Promises of God   12 comments

2 Peter 1, 4

1.  The goodness of God through Jesus Christ is the basis of every offer of mercy.  In him all the promises are yea and amen.

2.  His promises cover every need of heart and life.  “Where sin abounded grace did much more abound.”

(1)  Promises pardon and cleansing to all who repent.  1 Jno. 1, 9; Prov. 2, 8 & 13; Deut. 4, 29

(2)  The Spirit to abide forever as a helper.  Are not left alone.

(3)  In temptation He will make a way of escape.  1 Cor. 10, 13; Jas. 1, 12; Rev. 3, 10; Luke 22, 28

(4)  Will be their help in trouble.  Deut. 33, 25; Job 5, 19; Ps. 91, 15-16; Ps. 138, 7; Isa. 43, 2-5.  Will cause all to work together for their good.

(5)  The resurrection is promised.  Land & sea shall give up their dead.

(6)  Heaven is distinctly promised to the righteous.

All His promises are to the children of God.  None are to the unrepentant.

What great grace offered on such easy terms!


Christ As Lord in the Heart   1 comment

1 Peter 3, 15

1.  See that the heart is His temple, prepared for his indwelling and dedicated to Him.  Let Him dwell there richly by faith.

2.  Enthrone Him as Lord:

(a)  Of thy afflictions.  Love him supremely.  Let Him regulate and dominate all–love only what He loves & approves.

(b)  Subject the will to Him.  “Thy will be done as in heaven so in earth.”  Be “willing and obedient.”  He wills our highest possible good; let Him direct in all things.

(c)  Reverence Him, worship Him, magnify Him, exalt Him.  He is Lord of heaven and earth; let Him be Lord of thy whole life.

3.  He will be thy sufficiency in all things.  In having Him you have your highest blessing and He will supply “these other things.”  The heart will find rest and strength in Him.  Then no matter how much is exacted of you, you will be ready to give a reason of the hope that is in you.



1 Peter 3, 13 (Revised Version)

1.  God created all things; hence He is Sovereign of all things.  Creation invests Him with the right to rule.

2.  Jesus Christ is creator of a new and greater creation–the heart of man.  He, by His death, redeems man.  This invests Him of right Lord of heaven & earth–of all men.

3.  Man should so recognize Him and make Him Lord over the heart and life.

Make Him Lord:

(1)  Of the intellect.  He alone is man’s pilot.  In all one’s thinking an anchor is sorely needed.  Christian education alone is safe!

(2)  Of the emotions.  Satan stirs up evil passions.  Jesus will purify and rule them in righteousness–will give holy emotions, desires for a pleasure in all that is good.

(3)  Of the will.  Sin is the anarchist of the soul.  Surrender the will to Jesus Christ.  This adjusts and oils life’s machinery.  “‘Tis best to let him have his way with thee.”

(4)  Of others that they may be led to crown Him Lord of all.


Make Your Salvation Sure   1 comment



My great-grandfather had disdain for ritualism.  I, however, affirm it.  I adore ritualism!  Where is that incense?




2 Peter 1, 10

1.  There is too much involved to make sure work for heaven.  We are sure of sin & ought to be sure of salvation.  We need to know before it’s too late.

2.  From Christ’s teaching it is certain many will try to enter in and not the able.  “Have we not cast our demons?” etc. but he answers “I never knew you.”

(1)  There is a form of godliness, without the power.  But we need the “power to become the sons of God.”  Not eating and drinking, but a real experience of “righteousness.”  Be sure here.

(2)  Peter certainly teaches here the danger of apostasy.  This is the setting of the text.  He tells them how to avoid it, and says he that lacks these added graces is backslidden already.  “Take heed lest he fall.”  Be sure to grow in grace.

3.  How make sure?  First be sure of a genuine case of religion.  Second, rest not in ritualism, but add to your stock of grace and obey him faithfully.

4.  Let not yours be a superficial life.  Lay fast hold of Christ by faith.  Be sure of heart-felt religion and be devoted to his gracious will.

You have every reason thus to live.


The Overcoming Church   2 comments



My great-grandfather wrote:

Religion is a mater of personal experience.  (Rom. 14, 17)  This made them invincible.  They knew his power to save.  Revivals come by emphasizing experience, not dogma or ritual.  This has always been the peculiar power of Methodism and her mission.  Movements that emphasize something else fail.

The example of the Oxford Movement (1800s) disproves his main argument.

And I am an ardent ritualist.




Rev. 12, 11

John is banished to Patmos “for the word of God and the testimony of Jesus (Ch. 1, 9).  But he is given a vision of the Son of Man, hears the songs of the angels, and is shown things to come.  He sees the conflict of the witnessing church with Satan.  The Church conquers.  How?

1.  “By the blood of the Lamb.”  “Of God that taketh away the sin of the world.”  They have greater power than man alone possesses.  His blood has power to cleanse and keep all who come to him, no matter who opposes.  “These…have washed their robes and made them white through the blood of the Lamb.”

2.  “And the word of their testimony.”  “Wish the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”  Let the redeemed of the Lord say so.  “We are witnesses.”  The witnessing church invincible.  Testimony arrests attention.  It is always needed.

3.   “And they loved not their lives unto the death.”  They “counted not their lives dear unto them,” but devoted themselves to his cause at any cost.

The serpent rages so that they must endure as seeing him who is invisible.  They must suffer for the right.

(a)  Religion is a mater of personal experience.  (Rom. 14, 17)  This made them invincible.  They knew his power to save.  Revivals come by emphasizing experience, not dogma or ritual.  This has always been the peculiar power of Methodism and her mission.  Movements that emphasize something else fail.

(b)  What a call is here to heroic living and high endeavor.  Would that we might be worthy of them in experience and service too.

4.  No wonder John saw the Church conquering.  Such soldiers are invincible.  Satan’s kingdom shall be demolished and Jesus shall establish his kingdom upon its ruins.  Then Hallelujah, for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.


The Resurrected Christ Revealed   1 comment

Rev. 1, 18

1.  Life and death a mystery.  Left to himself man knows nothing of the future–he needs a revelation of it.

2.  Christians everywhere believe in a blissful immortality–they preach it, sing of it, rejoice in sorrow because of it.  There must be some foundation for it.

3.  That foundation is Christ’s own resurrection.  Friend and foe said he did.

(1)  Foes exulted.

(2)  Friends despaired.  Had he remained in the grave all would have abandoned Him forever.

(3)  But he arose.  He could not be holden of death.  He is the Son of God and all powers are subject to his power.  He arises victor forever.  Lies now are the only refuge of his foes.  With him the church arises.

4.  How may I know he arose?

(1)  By the fact of the Spirit’s presence.

(2)  By personal knowledge as in the text.

(3)  By Christian testimony in life & death.

(4)  By the spiritual resurrection of others.

5.  He has the keys of death & the grave.  He unlocked death’s door forever.  “Because I live ye shall live also.”  He is our humanity.  His resurrection is the pledge of that  of all.


Christ Among the Candlesticks   5 comments

Rev. 1, 12-16

1.  Definitions–

Candlesticks are the churches.

Seven stars are the ministers–angels.

Two-edged sword is his word –Heb. 4, 12.

“Son of man”–the same Jesus, caring for, helping and counselling his people.  Kingly & priestly in his apparel.

2.  Jesus’ concern in heaven is for the churches.  On earth his works, sufferings and death were for it.  Now he intercedes for it, considers it state.  Would men could feel how he is concerned for it.

3.  Holds the seven stars in his hand.  Not for their own sakes simply, but for the sake of the church.  They must deliver his message, not their work and for the increase.  Through them he would send his message to the churches.

4.  Sharp two-edged sword–such is his word–Heb. 4, 12; Eph. 6, 17; Isaiah 49, 2.  This is the weapon with which Christ will subdue his enemies; no carnal weapon is needed–2 Cor. 10, 4.  May not be comfortable as it pierces the soul, but its work is salvation when heeded.

5.  Countenance as the sun in his strength.  Before Him no evil can stand.  Is the source of all life, reviving every drooping flower.  Shine on us, thou Sun or Righteousness!!