Friday, May 25, 2007
August 1972 http://www.baptist-city.com/audio_ram/hac.ram
August 2003 http://www.baptist-city.com/audio_ram/hac-2003.ram
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Had an interesting discussion with my old Deacon/ Sunday School leader about salvation and living the Christian life. A friend of mine mentioned doubts about salvation. I quoted some new testament scripture about believing in heart and professing with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and you'll be saved. The question was posed in Sunday School (I wasn't there), and I guess it brought up a discussion regarding "how can belief be all that's required?", or something of the sort. The subject of the "Christian Life" came up, and I guess will be discussed further on Thursday at their Bible Study. Here's my questions-
1. Why is there a "Christian" life and a non-Christian one. Isn't there just one world that we all live in? That leads to the implication that a Christian certain duties that others don't have. This leads to my next question.
2. What duties define the Christian life? Preach the gospel? Disciple others? Go to church? Give tithes and offerings? These are all discussed in the Bible. Which leads to the third question.
3. If there is actually a separate Christian life, and if it has required duties, how much of these duties am I required to perform? If I don't do enough of them, will I not be good enough for Heaven? How much is enough? If I enjoy the duty, does that mean that it isn't a true sacrifice?
While way overly-simplified, so you see where this line of thinking/questioning takes us? In the complete opposite of Christ's teachings. If you want my opinion, I don't believe that Jesus would endorse the "Christian Life". Our culture has placed so many human-contrived ideas on what God wants of us that it has lead to a Pharacitical type list of rules and regulations that must be followed in order to be a "good Christian" (another idea that doesn't seem to line up with Christ's teachings. For instance, what's a bad Christian?)My summary- Christ walked by his disciples and said, "Follow Me." And they did. I decided to do that 23 years ago, and I believed that by following, my sins would be paid for by his death and I would be destined for Heaven. Any details that muddle this issue or cause me to doubt the truth of this are, in my humble opinion, useless and dangerous. There is life and there is death. I'll follow Christ in life, and my life will be a Christian one. Not the other way around. Trying to live a Christian life causes you to compare yourself to the "Christians" around you. Living your life while you follow Christ will, in the end, be considered a Christian life.
I think it's awesome that you are contemplating the truths that are in the Bible and what it is that God really requires of us, if anything. You are absolutely right that, once we accept Christ as our Savior, and place our faith in Him, believing that He is able to pay for our sins (which He did on Calvary) and take us to Heaven, we are saved and no amount of sin or good works will change that. I think where you may be confused is in your comments about whether or not there is a "Christian Life" we are to live, and what the consequences or rewards of that life will be.
"1. Why is there a "Christian" life and a non-Christian one. Isn't there just one world that we all live in? That leads to the implication that a Christian certain duties that others don't have. This leads to my next question."
A. I Peter 1:13-16 says:  Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
 As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:
 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. Throughout the Bible there are references to living a "Holy Life". Jesus died because we fall short and he wanted to bridge that gap between us and the level of perfection God requires. We then should be grateful and not take his death for granted by continuing in the "former lusts of your ignorance". Paul said it very plainly when he said in Romans 6:1-2, " What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?
 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?" When we were living as slaves to sin, we had no hope of every having the perfection that is required to get into heaven. Now that we are saved and have Jesus' righteousness, we have His perfection. This again does not mean we should live in our old sin...Paul says "God Forbid." If we do this, we are not losing our salvation, but we are disrespecting and dishonoring Jesus.
"2. What duties define the Christian life? Preach the gospel? Disciple others? Go to church? Give tithes and offerings? These are all discussed in the Bible. Which leads to the third question."
Romans 12:1 says, " I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. The term "reasonable service" is referring to a "duty". Because we are no longer our own, but are bought with a price (the blood of Jesus), we no longer have a say in what we do or how we do it. I Cor 6:20 says, " For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's. As you can see, the Bible says we belong to God. It follows then that if he asks us to honor him by performing certain duties (such as tithing, going to church, etc.) then we should do it. A Christian has essentially laid his life down as a "living sacrifice", giving it to God and relinquishing control. Fortunately, we have a God who wants a life for us that is better than we could provide for ourselves.
"3. If there is actually a separate Christian life, and if it has required duties, how much of these duties am I required to perform? If I don't do enough of them, will I not be good enough for Heaven? How much is enough? If I enjoy the duty, does that mean that it isn't a true sacrifice?"
We as Christians are required to live our lives by the example Jesus set, and the instructions God has given us in the Bible. If the Bible instructs us to do something and we truly desire to be the "living sacrifice" God has asked us to be, then we must obey. If we do not obey the Bible, WE DO NOT LOSE OUR SALVATION. This is an important point and one that is commonly misunderstood by critics of fundamental doctrine. When we are adopted into God's family and we disobey Him, we are no less a child of God than an orphan who gets adopted and disobeys his new parents. The adopted child's disobedience does not change the legal documents that were signed before a judge stating that this child is now a member of that family. While the child may be disciplined to teach him how to obey, and the child may lose out on some of the blessings and benefits that the other family members are enjoying, that child is still loved by the parents and considered their own. This holds true with our relationship to the Lord. Our level of commitment and service to Him will not determine whether or not we are going to heaven because that was settled on the cross 2,000 years ago. It will simply determine our usefulness to God here on this earth and the eternal rewards we will receive in Heaven. The only reason God doesn't immediately take us to Heaven to live with Him after we are saved is because there are still those who don't know Him here on this earth and need to hear the good news. We are here as servants of Christ.
"If you want my opinion, I don't believe that Jesus would endorse the "Christian Life"."
As a matter of fact, He did. In Matthew 5, 6, and 7 Jesus preached a rather long sermon explaining the "Christian Life" and how we are to live. He talks about issues such as lust, anger, dissention among the brethren, making frivolous vows, doing good works (verse 16), etc. Jesus is the source of the belief that we should live a Christian Life. I agree that many religious groups have added their own rules to biblical teaching, and many times this is because the principle is in the Bible (i.e. modesty) and changing times require us to adapt what the Bible says to our modern day (for instance, Jesus never said don't wear a bikini, but the Bible does define nakedness and we can ascertain from those verses that a bikini would be considered immodest).
"Trying to live a Christian life causes you to compare yourself to the "Christians" around you."
This is untrue. If you are trying to live a Christian life, then you would be living by the verse in the Bible that says, " For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. II Cor 10:12". We are instructed to look to Jesus for our example instead of comparing ourselves to others. Paul said in Heb 12:2, " Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God." A person who is TRUELY living a Christian life (there are a LOT of fakers) is going to be the most humble person you've ever met because they see how much they fall short of the righteousness of Christ. Again, I'm not taking about Salvation; I'm talking about sanctification which is the process that God takes us through in our lives to help us become more Christ-like.
"Living your life while you follow Christ will, in the end, be considered a Christian life." I couldn't agree more.
Monday, May 21, 2007
Friday, May 4, 2007
Much like electricity, Christians have the power of God in their lives. A Christian who spends more time with God and lives a righteous life will make himself a ready conduit for God's power and will be more useful to God than a carnal Christian. It is this power that determines the level at which Christ will use us for His work. If you don't have much of the Power of God in your life you may only be useful to him in menial tasks of service (you may be an electric razor battery...important, but not life changing). If you walk with God however, He may bestow his blessing and a greater amount of power upon you in order to use you for mightier works.
When I look at the lives of Moses, Joshua, Elijah, Elisha, Peter, and Paul I am convinced that the Lord used them so mightily because of their faithfulness and righteousness. We are all saved by the Grace of God, but your righteousness after salvation and your close walk with God will determine your effectiveness for Him. Endeavor to be a 500 kilowatt transformer, not a AAA battery.
Thursday, May 3, 2007
Here lies Ann Mann,
Who lived an old maid
But died an old Mann.
Dec. 8, 1767
The children of Israel wanted bread
And the Lord sent them manna,
Old clerk Wallace wanted a wife,
And the Devil sent him Anna.
For not rising.
Here lies the body
of Jonathan Blake
Stepped on the gas
Instead of the brake.
Here lays Butch,
We planted him raw.
He was quick on the trigger,
But slow on the draw.
Sacred to the memory of
my husband John Barnes
who died January 3, 1803
His comely young widow, aged 23, has
many qualifications of a good wife, and
yearns to be comforted.
Sir John Strange
Here lies an honest lawyer,
And that is Strange.
I was somebody.
Who, is no business
Here lies Lester Moore
Four slugs from a .44
No Les No More.
"I told you I was sick!"
Reader if cash thou art
In want of any
Dig 4 feet deep
And thou wilt find a Penny.
She always said her feet were killing her
but nobody believed her.
On the 22nd of June
Jonathan Fiddle -
Went out of tune.
Here lies the body of our Anna
Done to death by a banana
It wasn't the fruit that laid her low
But the skin of the thing that made her go.
Than he could pay.
In Memory of Beza Wood
Departed this life
Nov. 2, 1837
Aged 45 yrs.
Here lies one Wood
Enclosed in wood
The outer wood
Is very good:
We cannot praise
Under the sod and under the trees
Lies the body of Jonathan Pease.
He is not here, there's only the pod:
Pease shelled out and went to God.
Who was fatally burned
March 21, 1870
by the explosion of a lamp
filled with "R.E. Danforth's
Non-Explosive Burning Fluid"
Looked up the elevator shaft to see if
the car was on the way down. It was.
Here lies an Atheist
All dressed up
And no place to go.
Tom Smith is dead, and here he lies,
Nobody laughs and nobody cries;
Where his soul's gone, or how it fares,
Nobody knows, and nobody cares.
Here lies my wife,
Here lies she;
Here lies my wife: here let her lie!
Now she's at rest, and so am I.
Here lies a poor woman who was always tired;
She lived ina house where help was not hired.
Her last words on earth were: "Dear friends, I am going
Where washing ain't done, nor sweeping, no sewing:
But everything there is exact to my wishes;
For where they don't eat there's no washing of dishes...
Don't mourn for me now; don't mourn for me never -
I'm going to do nothing for evere and ever.
Born 15 September 1822
4th April 1844As a mark of affection
from his brother
Here richly, with ridiculous display,
The Politician's corpse was laid away.
While all of his acquaintance sneered and slanged,
I wept: for I had longed to see him hanged.
Beneath this stone, in hopes of Zion,
Doth lie the landlord of the Lion;
His son keeps on the business still,
Resigned unto the heavenly will.
I am the sworn, eternal and
uncompromising enemy of the liquor traffic. I have been, and will go on, fighting that damnable, dirty, rotten business with all the power at my command. I shall ask no quarter from that gang, and they shall get none from me.
After all is said that can be said on the liquor traffic, its influence is degrading on the individual, the family, politics and business and upon everything that you touch in this old world. For the time has long gone by when there is any ground for arguments of its ill effects. All are agreed on that point. There is just one prime reason why the saloon has not been knocked into hell, in that is the false statement "that the saloons are needed to help lighten the taxes."
It costs fifty times more for the saloon than the revenue derived from it.
I challenge you to show me where the saloon has ever helped business, education, church morals or anything we hold dear.
You listen today and if I can't peel the bark off that damnable fallacy I will pack my trunk and leave. I say that is the biggest lie ever belched out. The wholesale and retail trade in Iowa pays every year at least $500,000 in licenses. Then, if there were no drawback, it ought to reduce the taxation 25 cents per capita. If the saloon is necessary to pay the taxes, and if they pay $500,000 in taxes, it ought to reduce them 25 cents a head. But no, the whiskey business has increased taxes $1,900,000 instead of reducing them, and I defy any whisky man on God's dirt to show one town that has the saloon where the taxes are lower than where they do not have the saloon. I defy you to show me an instance.
Crime and Idiocy
Listen! Seventy-five per cent of our idiots come from intemperate parents, 80 per cent of the paupers, 82 per cent of the crime is committed by men under the influence of liquor, 90 per cent of the adult criminals are whiskey made. The Chicago Tribune kept track for 10-years and found that 53,438 murders were committed in the saloons.
Archbishop Ireland, the famous Roman Catholic of St. Paul, said of social crime "that 75 per cent is caused by drink and 80 per cent of the poverty." I go to a family and it is broken up and I say, "what caused this?" Drink! I step up to a young man on the scaffold and say, "what brought you here?" Drink! Whence all the misery and sorrow and corruption? Invariably it is drink.
Whiskey and beer are all right in their place, but their place is in hell. The saloon hasn't one leg to stand on.
Five Points, in New York, was a spot as near like hell as any spot on earth. There are five streets that run to this point, and right in the middle was an old brewery, and the streets on either side were lined with grog shops. The newspapers turned a search light on the districts, and before they could stop it the first thing they had to do was to buy the old brewery and turn it into a mission, and today it is a decent, respectable place.
Look at Kansas. It is dry. In 85 of 105 counties in Kansas there is not one idiot. In 38 counties they have not a single pauper in the poorhouse, and there are only 600 dependents in the whole State. In 65 counties in Kansas they did not have a single prisoner in the county jails in the year 1912, and in some of the counties the grand jury hasn't been called to try a criminal case in 10 years.
Sum of All Villainies
The saloon is the sum of all villainies. It is worse than war or pestilence. It is the crime of crimes. It is parent of crimes and the mother of sins. It is the appalling source of misery and crime in the land and the principal cause of crime. It is the source of three-fourths of the taxes to support that crime. And to license such an incarnate fiend of hell is the dirtiest, low-down, damnable business on top of this old earth. There is nothing to be compared to it.
The Legislature of Illinois appropriated $6,000,000 in 1908 to take care of the insane people in the state, and the whiskey business produces 75 per cent of the insane. That is what you go down in your pocket for to help support. If I remember rightly the Legislature appropriated nearly $9,000,000 to take care of the state institution. Do away with the saloon, and you will close these institutions. The saloons make them necessary, and they make the poverty and fill the jails and the penitentiaries. Who has to pay the bills? The landlord who doesn't get the rent because the money goes for whiskey; the butcher and the grocer, and the charitable person who takes pity on the children of drunkards, and the tax payer who supports the insane asylums and other institutions that the whiskey business keeps full of human wrecks.
Do away with the cursed business and you will not have to put up to support them. Who gets the money? The saloon keepers and the brewers, and the distillers, while the whiskey fills the land with misery and poverty and wretchedness and disease and death and damnation and it is being authorized by the will of the sovereign people.
Last year the corn crop was 2,553,732,000 bushels, and it was valued at $1,250,000,000. Secretary Wilson says that the breweries use less than 2 per cent; I will say that they use 2 percent. This would make 51,000,000 bushels, and at 50 cents a bushel, that would be about $25,000,000. I'll be generous with the dirty, rotten gang.
Drink and Bankruptcy
Now listen! In 1912 the income of the United States government and the cities and towns and counties from the whiskey business was $134,000,000. That is putting it liberally. You say that's a lot of money. Well, last year the working men spent $2,200,000,000 for drink, and it cost $1,200,000,000 to care for the judicial machinery. In other words, the whiskey business cost us $3,400,000,000, I will subtract from that the dirty $350,000,000 which we got, and it leaves $3,000,000,000 in favor of knocking the whiskey business out on purely a money business.
And listen! Last year we spent $600,000,000 for our paupers and criminals, insane, orphans, feeble minded, etc., in the United States, and 82 per cent of our criminals are whiskey made and 75 per cent of the paupers are whiskey made. Our national increase in wealth was only $5,000,000,000, so you can figure out how long it will take us to go into bankruptcy with that cussed business on our backs. The average factory hand earns $500 a year, and it costs us $5,200 a year to support each of our whiskey criminals. There are 335,000 enrolled criminals in the United States and 80,000 in jails and penitentiaries. Three-fourths were sent there because of drink, and then they have the audacity to say the saloon is needed for money revenue. Never was there a baser lie.
"But," says the whiskey fellow, "we would lose trade, the farmer would not come to town to trade." You lie. Say, when you put up the howl that if you didn't have the saloons the farmer won't trade-say, Mr. Whiskey Men, why do you dump money into politics and back the Legislatures into the corner and fight to the last ditch to prevent the enactment of county local option?
Scared of Farmers
You know if the farmers were given a chance they would knock the whiskey business into hell the first throw out of the box. You are afraid. You have cold feet on the proposition. You are afraid to give the farmer a chance. They are scared to death of farmers.
When the whiskey gang tries to say its business is, not falling off it lies. I've got the last annual report of the government right here. I tell you I have an inside track on that dirty gang. This report says that there were 10,741,738 less gallons of whiskey made last year than there were in 1913. It says there were 127 fewer registered distilleries in 1914 than in 1913 in our land, which means a lot when you consider there are only 743 in the United States. Also, it says there were 33 fewer breweries in 1914 than there were in 1913.
Don't put any stock in the man who gets up in Congress, says he is a temperance man in the next breathe says prohibition is a state affair. If it is a state affair why doesn't the United States government divide the $225,000,000 revenue it collected last year with the States?
Pennsylvania produced 8,800,876 gallons of beer last year, more than any other state in the union except New York. It ranked fifth in the production of whiskey producing 8,489,062 gallons. I say the temperance question is as much a national question as slavery was in the days of'61. And if the politician hasn't the manhood to stand up and defend, then somebody else will get his job in Washington before long.
Saloon vs. Government
The saloon is strong against good government. It supports the boodle aldermen, the political boss and the political machine. And all it asks for the $30 it hands out is that it be left alone. It says, "keep your hands off and let me go on with my business of making drunkards out of the countries youth, and filling the jails and the penitentiaries and the asylums and the poorhouses."
The saloon is never identified with any movement for good government, and there was never one started that the saloon didn't oppose, tooth and nail. All the slanders and lies out about me crawled out of a grog shop. The liquor gangs press bureau has got my itinerary, just as well as I have got it, and they send out there dirty; rotten, stinking lies ahead of me. Yes, and there's always a dirty, rotten, stinking newspaper or two that will print them. But don't you think that scares me a bit? I'm not afraid of the worst old scoundrel that ever dipped his pen in the inkbottle.
I tell you, gentlemen, the American home is the dearest heritage of the people, for the people, by the people, and when a man can go from home in the morning with the kisses of his wife and children on his lips, and come back at night with an empty dinner bucket to a happy home, that man is a better man, whether white of black. Whatever takes away the comforts of home - whatever degrades that man or woman - whatever invades the sanctity of the home, is the deadliest foe to the home, to church, to state and school, and the saloon is the deadliest foe to the home, the church and the state, on top of God Almighty's dirt.
And if all the combined forces of hell should assemble and conclave, and with them all the men on earth that hate and despise God and purity and virtue - if all the scum of the earth might mingle with the denizens of hell to try to think of the deadliest institutions to home, to church and state, I tell you sir the combined hellish intelligence could not conceive of or bring an institution that could touch the hem of the garment of the open licensed saloon to damn the home and the manhood, and womanhood and business and every other good thing on God's earth.
"But," you say, "we will regulate it by high license." Regulate what by high license? You might as well try to regulate a power mill in hell.
Worse Than a Thief
It is my opinion that the saloonkeeper is worse than a thief and a murderer. The ordinary thief steals only your money, but the saloonkeeper steals your honor and your character. The ordinary murderer takes your life, but the saloonkeeper murders your soul.
The saloon is an infidel. It has no faith in God; has no religion. It would close every church in the land. It would hang its beer signs on the abandoned altars. It would close every public school. It respects the thief, and it esteems the blasphemer; it fills the prisons and penitentiaries. It despises heaven, hates love, and scorns virtue. It tempts the passions. Its music is the song of a siren. Its sermons are a collection of lewd, vile stories. It wraps a mantle about the hope of this world to come.
It is the moral clearinghouse for rot, and damnation, and poverty, and insanity, and it wrecks homes and blights lives today. The saloon is a liar. It promises health and causes disease. It promises prosperity and sends adversity. It promises happiness and sends misery.
I tell you that the curse of God Almighty is on the saloon. Legislatures are legislating against it. Decent society is barring it out. The fraternal brotherhoods are knocking it out. The Masons and Odd Fellows and the knights of Pythias and the A. O. U. W. are closing their doors to the whiskey sellers. It is on the downgrade. It is headed for hell; and by the grace of God, I am going to give it a push, with a whoop, for all I know how. Listen to me; I am going to show you how we burn our money. It costs 20 cents to make a gallon of whiskey; sold over the counter at 10 cents a glass it will bring $4.
We dumped nearly four times the value of the national bank stock in the United States into the whiskey hole last year, and we didn't fill the hole up at that. What is the matter? Whenever the day comes when every Catholic and Protestant whose name is on a church record votes against the saloon, that day will saloon go to hell. I charge the church as being responsible for the saloon, for it is strong enough to do away with it. Hell will be so full of whiskey-voting church members that their feet will stick out the windows.
Say, hold on a bit. Have you got a silver dollar? I am going to show you how it is burned up. We have in this country 218,000 saloons, and allowing 50 feet frontage for each saloon. It makes a street from New York to Chicago, and 5,000,000 men, woman and children go daily into the saloon for drink. And marching 20 miles a day, it would take 20 days to pass this building and marching 5 abreast they would reach 500 miles. There they go; look at them!
Half Million Enter Grog Shop
On the first day of January 500,000 of the young men of our nation entered the grog shop and began a public career, hellward, and on Dec. 31 I will come back here and summon you people and ring the bell and raise the curtain and say to the saloon and breweries: "On the first day of January I gave you 500,000 of the brain and muscle of our land, and I want them back and I have come in the name of home and church and school; father, mother, sister, sweetheart: give me back what I gave you. March out."
I count, and 18,000 have lost their appetite and have become muttering, bleary-eyed drunkards, and I say: "What is that I hear, a funeral dirge?" What is that procession? A funeral procession 3,000 miles long and 600,000 hearses in the procession. One hundred and ten thousand men die drunkards in this land of the free and the home of the brave. Listen! In an hour 80 men die drunkards, 2,000 a day and 110,000 a year. One man will leap in front of a train, another will plunge into a river, another will plunge from the dock into a lake, another will throw his hands to his head and life will end. Another will cry "mother!" and his life will go out like a burnt match.
Like Hamilcar of old, who swore eternal enmity against Rome, so I propose to perpetuate the feud against liquor traffic until the white-winged dove of temperance builds her nest on the dome of the Capitol at Washington and spreads her wings of peace, sobriety and joy over our land, which I love with all my heart.
Two Uses of Dollar
I hold a silver dollar in my hand. Come on, we are going to a saloon. We will go into a saloon and spend that dollar for a quart. It takes 20 cents to make a gallon of whiskey and a dollar to buy a quart. You say to the saloonkeeper: "Give me a quart." I will show you, if you wait a minute, how she is burned up. Here I am, John, an old drunken bum with a wife and six kids (Thank God it's all a lie.) Come on, I will go down to a saloon and throw down my dollar. It costs 20 cents to make a gallon of whiskey. A nickel will buy a quart of booze. Who gets the nickel? The farmer, for corn and apples. Who gets the 95 cents? The United States government, the big distillers, the big corporations, I am John, a drunken bum and I will spend my dollar. I have worked a week and got my pay. I go into a grog shop and throw down my dollar and I get a quart of booze. Come home with me. I stagger and reel in my wife's presence and she says: "John, what did you bring home?"
What will a quart do? It will burn up my happiness and my home and fill my home with squalor and want. So here is the dollar. The saloonkeeper has it. Here is my quart. There you get the whiskey end of it. Here you get the workingman's end of the saloon.
But come on. I will go to a store and spend the dollar for a pair of shoes. I want them for my son, and he puts them on his feet, and with the shoes to protect his feet he goes out and earns another dollar, and my dollar becomes a silver thread in the woof and warp of happiness and joy, and the man that owns the building gets some, and the clerk that sold the shoes gets some, and the merchant, and the travelling man, and the wholesale gets some, and the factory, and the man that made the shoes, and the man that tanned the hide, and the butcher that bought the calf, and the farmer that raised the calf, and the little colored fellow that shined the shoes, and my dollar spread itself and nobody is made the worse for spending the money.
Gang Has His Money
Say, wife, the bread that ought to be in your stomach to satisfy the cravings of hunger is down yonder in the grocery store, and your husband hasn't money enough to carry it home. The meat that ought to satisfy your hunger hangs in the butcher shop. Your husband hasn't any money to buy it. The cloth for a dress is lying on the shelf in the store, but your husband hasn't the money to buy it. The whiskey gang has his money. Why didn't the United State Congress vote to let the people have a shot at the whiskey gang? I'll tell you. The whiskey gang has a Congress backed into a corner, and is squeezing the gizzard out of it so it can't even peep.
I would like to do this. I would like to see every booze fighter get on the water wagon. I would like to summon all the drunkards in America and say:
Boys, let's cut it out and spend the money for flour, meat and calico; what do you say? Say! $500,000,000 will buy all the flour in the United States.
Say, if the man that drinks the whiskey goes to hell, the man that votes for the saloon that sold the whiskey to him will go to hell. If the man that drinks the whiskey goes to hell and the man that sold the whiskey to the man that drank it goes to heaven, then the poor drunkard will have the right to stand on the brink of eternal damnation and put his arms around the pillar of justice and say, "That isn't a square deal." If you vote for the dirty business you go to hell as sure as you live, and I would like to fire the furnace while you are there.
Some fellow says, "Dry the saloon out and the buildings will be empty." Which would you rather have, empty buildings or empty jails, penitentiaries and insane asylums? You drink the stuff and what have you to say? You that vote for it and you that sell it? Look at them painted on the canvas of your recollection.
"We will make laws for you. We must have lumber for houses."
He goes up to another mill and says: "Hey, what kind of a mill are you?"
"A grist mill?"
"What do you make?"
"Flour and meal out of wheat and corn."
"Is the finished product worth more than the raw material?"
"Then come on. We will make laws for you. We will protect you."
He goes up to another mill and says:
"What kind of mill are you?"
"A paper mill."
"What do you make paper out of?"
"Straw and rags."
"Well, we will make laws for you. We must have paper on which to write notes and mortgages."
He goes up to another mill and says:
"Hey, what kind of a mill are you?"
"A gin mill."
"I don't like the looks nor the smell of you. A gin mill? What do you make? What kind of a mill are you?"
"A gin mill."
Growing Boy Is Raw Material
"What is your raw material?"
"The boys of America."
(Here the evangelist summoned five small boys to the platform.)
The gin mills of this country must have 2,000,000 boys or shut up shop. Say, walk down your streets; count the homes and every fifth home has to furnish a boy for a drunkard. Have you furnished yours?
"What is your raw material?"
"Say, saloon, gin mill, what is your finished product?"
"Blear-eyed, low down, staggering men and the scum of God's dirt, that have gone from me and taken the count."
Go to the jails, go to the insane asylums and the penitentiaries and the homes for the feeble minded. There you will find the finished product for their dirty business. I tell you, it is the worst business this side of hell; and now you know it.
They don't even give you the pure stuff. If ever there was a jubilee in hell, it was when lager beer was invented. Not 3 per cent of the beer sold is made exclusive from barley, malt, hops and yeast. Look at the breweries. What are those sidetracks for? Why, to bring in the carloads of gincose and sugar and other things they put into the stuff. Pure beer is dark in color and bitter in taste. You poor idiot, you never drank pure beer.
Not 15 per cent of the whiskey on the market is pure stuff. When it is first distilled and pure, whiskey is the color of water. It gets its color in the aging process. Legitimately, that takes from four to eight years. But now they stick a steam pipe into the stuff and "age" it in 20 hours.
What is your raw material, saloons? American boys. Say, I would not give one boy for all the distilleries and saloons this side of hell. And they have to have 2,000,000 boys every generation. And then you tell me you are a man when you will vote for an institution like that. What do you want to do, pay taxes in money or in boys?
Say, will you line up for the prohibition? Men of Boston, Massachusetts and our nation, how many of you will promise that by the help of God you will vote against it? Stand up. Let me have a look at you!
Tuesday, May 1, 2007
"The reason we have so many popsicles in the pews is because we have too many polar bears in the pulpits!" Amen to that! George Whitefield put it this way,
"It is a poor sermon that gives no offense; that neither makes the hearer displeased with himself nor with the preacher." If the preachers of God's Word would get on fire like the preachers of the past, maybe that fire would spread to their congregations and we might have another Great Awakening! Praise God that men like Dr. Jack Schaap, Dr. Jeff Owens, Dr. Bob Gray, Dr. Arthur Maricle, and Brother Chris Jones are setting the example for the rest of Christianity!
Modern to the last minute Sunday's methods may be, but his message is unmistakably the "Old-time religion." He believes his beliefs without a question. There is no twilight zone in his intellectual processes; no mental reservation in his preaching. He is sure that man is lost without Christ, and that only by the acceptance of the Saviour can fallen humanity find salvation. He is as sure of hell as of heaven, and for all modernized varieties of religion he has only vials of scorn.
In no single particular is Sunday's work more valuable than in its revelation of the power of positive conviction to attract and convert multitudes. The world wants faith. "Intolerant," cry the scholars of Sunday; but the hungry myriads accept him as their spiritual guide to peace, and joy, and righteousness. The world wants a religion with salvation in it; speculation does not interest the average man who seeks deliverance from sin in himself and in the world. He does not hope to be evoluted into holiness; he wants to be redeemed.
"Modernists" sputter and fume and rail at Sunday and his work: but they cannot deny that he leads men and women into new lives of holiness, happiness and helpfulness. Churches are enlarged and righteousness is promoted, all by the old, blood-stained way of the Cross. The revivals which have followed the preaching of Evangelist Sunday are supplemental to the Book of the Acts. His theology is summed up in the words Peter used in referring to Jesus: "There is none other Name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved."
One of Sunday's favorite sayings is: "I don't know any more about theology than a jack-rabbit does about ping-pong, but I'm on the way to glory. That really does not fully express the evangelist's point. He was arguing that "theology bears the same relation to Christianity that botany does to flowers, or astronomy to the stars. Botany is rewritten, but the flowers remain the same. Theology changes (I have no objection to your new theology when it tries to make the truths of Christianity clearer), but Christianity abides. Nobody is kept out of heaven because he does not understand theology. It isn't theology that saves, but Christ; it is not the sawdust trail that saves, but Christ in the motive that makes you hit the trail.
"I believe the Bible is the word of God from cover to cover. I believe that the man who magnifies the word of God in his preaching is the man whom God will honor. Why do such names stand out on the pages of history as Wesley, Whitefield, Finney and Martin Luther? Because of their fearless denunciation of all sin, and because they preach Jesus Christ without fear or favor.
"But somebody says a revival is abnormal. You lie! Do you mean to tell me that the godless, card-playing conditions of the Church are normal? I say they are not, but it is the abnormal state. It is the sin-eaten, apathetic condition of the Church that is abnormal. It is the 'Dutch lunch' and beer party, card parties and the like, that are abnormal. I say that they lie when they say that a revival is an abnormal condition in the Church.
"What we need is the good old-time kind of revival that will cause you to love your neighbors, and quit talking about them. A revival that will make you pay your debts, and have family prayers. Get that kind and then you will see that a revival means a very different condition from what people believe it does.
"Christianity means a lot more than church membership. Many an old skin-flint is not fit for the balm of Gilead until you give him a fly blister and get after him with a currycomb. There are too many Sunday-school teachers who are godless card-players, beer, wine and champagne drinkers. No wonder the kids are going to the devil. No wonder your children grow up like cattle when you have no form of prayer in the home."
THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO SUNDAY
What does converted mean? It means completely changed. Converted is not synonymous with reformed. Reforms are from without-conversion from within. Conversion is a complete surrender to Jesus. It's a willingness to do what he wants you to do. Unless you have made a complete surrender and are doing his will it will avail you nothing if you've reformed a thousand times and have your name on fifty church records.
Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, in your heart and confess him with your mouth and you will be saved. God is good. The plan of salvation is presented to you in two parts. Believe in your heart and confess with your mouth. Many of you here probably do Believe. Why don't you confess? Now own up. The truth is that you have a yellow streak. Own up, business men, and business women, and all of you others. Isn't it so? Haven't you got a little saffron? Brave old Elijah ran like a scared deer when he heard old Jezebel had said she would have his head, and he beat it. And he ran to Beersheba and lay down under a juniper tree and cried to the Lord to let him die. The Lord answered his prayer, but not in the way he expected. If he had let him die he would have died with nothing but the wind moaning through the trees as his funeral dirge. But the Lord had something better for Elijah. He had a chariot of fire and it swooped down and carried him into glory without his ever seeing death.
So he says he has something better for you--salvation if he can get you to see it. You've kept your church membership locked up. You've smiled at a smutty story. When God and the Church were scoffed at you never peeped,and when asked to stand up here you've sneaked out the back way and beat it. You're afraid and God despises a coward--a mutt. You cannot be converted by thinking so and sitting still.
Maybe you're a drunkard, an adulterer, a prostitute, a liar; won't admit you are lost; are proud. Maybe you're even proud you're not proud, and Jesus has a time of it.
Jesus said: "Come to me," not to the Church; to me, not to a creed; to me, not to a preacher; to me, not to an evangelist; to me, not to a priest; to me, not to a pope; "Come to me and I will give you rest." Faith in Jesus Christ saves you, not faith in the Church.
You can join church, pay your share of the preacher's salary, attend the services, teach Sunday school, return thanks and do everything that would apparently stamp you as a Christian--even pray--but you won't ever be a Christian until you do what God tells you to do.
That's the road, and that's the only one mapped out for you and for me. God treats all alike. He doesn't furnish one plan for the banker and another for the janitor who sweeps out the bank. He has the same plan for one that he has for another. It's the law--you may not approve of it, but that doesn't make any difference.
Salvation a Personal Matter
The first thing to remember about being saved is that salvation is a personal matter. "Seek ye the Lord"--that means every one must seek for himself. It won't do for the parent to seek for the children; it won't do for the children to seek for the parent. If you were sick all the medicine I might take wouldn't do you any good. Salvation is a personal matter that no one else can do for you; you must attend to it yourself.
Some persons have lived manly or womanly lives, and they lack but one thing--open confession of the Lord Jesus Christ. Some men think that they must come to him in a certain way--that they must be stirred by emotion or something like that.
Some people have a deeper conviction of sin before they are converted than after they are converted. With some it is the other way. Some know when they are converted and others don't.
Some people are emotional. Some are demonstrative. Some will cry easily. Some are cold and can't be moved to emotion. A man jumped up in a meeting and asked whether he could be saved when he hadn't shed a tear in forty years. Even as he spoke he began to shed tears. It's all a matter of how you're constituted. I am vehement, and I serve God with the same vehemence that I served the devil when I went down the line.
Some of you say that in order to accept Jesus you must have different surroundings. You think you could do it better in some other place. You can be saved where you are as well as any place on earth. I say, "My watch doesn't run. It needs new surroundings. I'll put it in this other pocket, or I'll put it here, or here on these flowers." It doesn't need new surroundings. It needs a new mainspring; and that's what the sinner needs. You need a new heart, not a new suit.
What can I do to keep out of hell? "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved."
The Philippian jailer was converted. He had put the disciples into the stocks when they came to the prison, but after his conversion he stooped down and washed the blood from their stripes.
Now, leave God out of the proposition for a minute. Never mind about the new birth--that's his business. Jesus Christ became a man, bone of our bone, flesh of our flesh. He died on the cross for us, so that we might escape the penalty pronounced on us. Now, never mind about anything but our part in salvation. Here it is: "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved."
You say, "Mr. Sunday, the Church is full of hypocrites." So's hell. I say to you if you don't want to go to hell and live with that whole bunch forever, come into the Church, where you won't have to associate with them very long. There are no hypocrites in heaven.
You say, "Mr. Sunday, I can be a Christian and go to heaven without joining a church." Yes, and you can go to Europe without getting on board a steamer. The swimmings good--but the sharks are laying for fellows who take that route. I don't believe you. If a man is truly saved he will hunt for a church right away.
You say, "It's so mysterious. I don't understand." You'll be surprised to find out how little you know. You plant a seed in the ground--that's your part. You don't understand how it grows. How God makes that seed grow is mysterious to you.
Some people think that they can't be converted unless they go down on their knees in the straw at a camp-meeting, unless they pray all hours of the night, and all nights of the week, while some old brother storms heaven in prayer. Some think a man must lose sleep, must come down the aisle with a haggard look, and he must froth at the mouth and dance and shout. Some get it that way, and they don't think that the work I do is genuine unless conversions are made in the same way that they have got religion.
I want you to see what God put in black and white; that there can be a sound, thorough conversion in an instant; that man can be converted as quietly as the coming of day and never backslide. I do not find fault with the way other people get religion. What I want and preach is the fact that a man can be converted without any fuss.
If a man wants to shout and clap his hands in joy over his wife's conversion, or if a wife wants to cry when her husband is converted, I am not going to turn the hose on them, or put them in a strait-jacket. When a man turns to God truly in conversion, I don't care what form his conversion takes. I wasn't converted that way, but I do not rush around and say, with gall and bitterness, that you are not saved because you did not get religion the way I did. If we all got religion in the same way, the devil might go to sleep with a regular Rip Van Winkle snooze and still be on the job.
Look at Nicodemus. You could never get a man with the temperament of Nicodemus near a camp meeting, to kneel down in the straw, or to shout and sing. He was a quiet, thoughtful, honest, sincere and cautious man. He wanted to know the truth and he was willing to walk in the light when he found it.
Look at the man at the pool of Bethesda. He was a big sinner and was in a lot of trouble which his sins had made for him. He had been in that condition for a long time. It didn't take him three minutes to say "Yes," when the Lord spoke to him. See how quietly he was converted.
"And He Arose and Followed Him"!
Matthew stood in the presence of Christ and he realized what it would be to be without Christ, to be without hope, and it brought him to a quick decision. "And he arose and followed him."
How long did that conversion take? How long did it take him to accept Christ after he had made up his mind? And you tell me you can't make an instant decision to please God? The decision of Matthew proves that you can. While he was sitting at his desk he was not a disciple. The instant he arose he was. That move changed his attitude toward God. Then he ceased to do evil and commenced to do good. You can be converted just as quickly as Matthew was.
God says: "Let the wicked man forsake his way." The instant that is done, no matter if the man has been a life-long sinner, he is safe. There is no need of struggling for hours--or for days-do it now. Who are you struggling with? Not God. God's mind was made up long before the foundations of the earth were laid. The plan of salvation was made long before there was any sin in the world. Electricity existed long before there was any car wheel for it to drive. "Let the wicked man forsake his way." When? Within a month, within a week, within a day, within an hour? No! Now! The instant you yield, God's plan of salvation is thrown into gear. You will be saved before you know it, like a child being born.
Rising and following Christ switched Matthew from the broad to the narrow way. He must have counted the cost as he would have balanced his cash book. He put one side against the other. The life he was living led to all chance of gain. On the other side there was Jesus, and Jesus outweighs all else. He saw the balance turn as the tide of a battle turns and then it ended with his decision. The sinner died and the disciple was born.
I believe that the reason the story of Matthew was written was to show how a man could be converted quickly and quietly. It didn't take him five or ten years to begin to do something--he got busy right away.
You don't believe in quick conversions? There have been a dozen men of modern times who have been powers for God whose conversion was as quiet as Matthew's. Charles G. Finney never went to a camp meeting. He was out in the woods alone, praying, when he was converted. Sam Jones, a mighty man of God, was converted at the bedside of his dying father. Moody accepted Christ while waiting on a customer in a boot and shoe store. Dr. Chapman was converted as a boy in a Sunday school. All the other boys in the class had accepted Christ, and only Wilbur remained. The teacher turned to him and said, "And how about you, Wilbur?" He said, "I will," and he turned to Christ and has been one of his most powerful evangelists for many years. Gipsy Smith was converted in his father's tent. Torrey was an agnostic, and in comparing agnosticism, infidelity and Christianity, he found the scale tipped toward Christ. Luther was converted as he crawled up a flight of stairs in Rome.
Seemingly the men who have moved the world for Christ have been converted in a quiet manner. The way to judge a tree is by its fruit. Judge a tree of quiet conversion in this way.
Another lesson. When conversion compels people to forsake their previous calling, God gives them a better job. Luke said, "He left all." Little did he dream that his influence would be world-reaching and eternity-covering. His position as tax-collector seemed like a big job, but if was picking up pins compared to the job God gave him. Some of you may be holding back for fear of being put out of your job. If you do right God will see that you do not suffer. He has given plenty of promises, and if you plant your feet on them you can defy the poor-house. Trust in the Lord means that God will feed you. Following Christ you may discover a gold mine of ability that you never dreamed of possessing. There was a saloon-keeper, converted in a meeting at New Castle, who won hundreds of people to Christ by his testimony and his preaching.
You do not need to be in the church before the voice comes to you; you don't need to be reading the Bible; you don't need to be rich or poor or learned. Wherever Christ comes follow. You may be converted while engaged in your daily business. Men cannot put up a wall and keep Jesus away. The still small voice will find you.
At the Cross-roads
Right where the two roads through life diverge God has put Calvary. There he put up a cross, the stumbling block over which the love of God said, "I'll touch the heart of man with the thought of father and son." He thought that would win the world to him, but for nineteen hundred years men have climbed the Mount of Calvary and trampled into the earth the tenderest teachings of God.
You are on the devil's side. How are you going to cross over?
So you cross the line and God won't issue any extradition papers. Some of you want to cross. If you believe, then say so, and step across. I'll bet there are hundreds that are on the edge of the line and many are standing straddling it. But that won't save you. You believe in your heart--confess him with your mouth. With his heart man believes and with his mouth he confesses. Then confess and receive salvation full, free, perfect and external. God will not grant any extradition papers. Get over the old line. A man isn't a soldier because he wears a uniform, or carries a gun, or carries a canteen. He is a soldier when he makes a definite enlistment. All of the others can be bought without enlisting. When a man becomes a soldier he goes out on muster day and takes an oath to defend his country. It's the oath that makes him a soldier. Going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than going to a garage makes you an automobile, but public definite enlistment for Christ makes you a Christian.
"Oh," a woman said to me out in Iowa, "Mr. Sunday, I don't think I have to confess with my mouth." I said: "You're putting up your thought against God's."
M-o-u-t-h doesn't spell intellect. It spells mouth and you must confess with your mouth. The mouth is the biggest part about most people, anyhow.
What must I do?
Philosophy doesn't answer it. Infidelity doesn't answer it. First, "believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved." Believe on the, Lord. Lord--that's his kingly name. That's the name he reigns under. "Thou shalt call his name Jesus." It takes that kind of a confession. Give me a Saviour with a sympathetic eye to watch me so I shall not slander. Give me a Saviour with a strong arm to catch me if I stumble. Give me a Saviour that will hear my slightest moan.
Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and be saved. Christ is his resurrection name. He is sitting at the right hand of the Father interceding for us.
Because of his divinity he understands God's side of it and because of his humanity he understands our side of if. Who is better qualified to be the mediator? He's a mediator. What is that? A lawyer is a mediator between the jury and the defendant. A retail merchant is a mediator between the wholesale dealer and the consumer. Therefore, Jesus Christ is the Mediator between God and man. Believe on the Lord. He's ruling today. Believe on the Lord Jesus. He died to save us. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. He's the Mediator.
Her majesty, Queen Victoria, was traveling in Scotland when a storm came up and she took refuge in a little hut of a Highlander. She stayed there for an hour and when she went the good wife said to her husband, "We'll tie a ribbon on that chair because her majesty has sat on it and no one else will ever sit on it." A friend of mine was there later and was going to sit in the chair when the man cried: "Nae, nae, mon. Dinna sit there. Her majesty spent an hour with us once and she sat on that chair and we tied a ribbon on it and no one else will ever sit on it." They were honored that her majesty had spent the hour with them. It brought unspeakable joy to them.
It's great that Jesus Christ will sit on the throne of my heart, not for an hour, but here to sway his power forever and ever.
"He Died for Me"
In the war there was a band of guerillas--Quantrell's band--that had been ordered to be shot on sight. They had burned a town in Iowa and they had been caught. One long ditch was dug and they were lined up in front of it and blindfolded and tied, and just as the firing squad was ready to present arms a young man dashed through the bushes and cried, "Stop!" He told the commander of the firing squad that he was as guilty as any of the others, but he had escaped and had come of his own free will, and pointed to one man in the line and asked to take his place. "I'm single," he said, "while he has a wife and babies." The commander of that firing squad was an usher in one of the cities in which I held meetings, and he told me how the young fellow was blindfolded and bound and the guns rang out and he fell dead.
Time went on and one day a man came upon another in a graveyard in Missouri weeping and shaping the grave into form. The first man asked who was buried there and the other said, "The best friend I ever had." Then he told how he had not gone far away but had come back and got the body of his friend after he had been shot and buried it; so he knew he had the right body. And he had brought a withered bouquet all the way from his home to put on the grave. He was poor then and could not afford anything costly, but he had placed a slab of wood on the pliable earth with these words on it: "He died for me."
Major Whittle stood by the grave some time later and saw the same monument. If you go there now you will see something different. The man became rich and today there is a marble monument fifteen feet high and on it this inscription:
SACRED TO THE MEMORY OF WILLIE LEE HE TOOK MY PLACE IN THE LINE HE DIED FOR ME
Sacred to the memory of Jesus Christ. He took our place on the cross and gave his life that we might live, and go to heaven and reign with him.
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, confess him with thy mouth, and thou shalt be saved and thy house."
It is a great salvation that can reach down into the quagmire of filth, pull a young man out and send him out to hunt his mother and fill her days with sunshine. It is a great salvation, for it saves from great sin.
The way to salvation is not Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Vassar or Wellesley. Environment and culture can't put you into heaven without you accept Jesus Christ.
It's great. I want to tell you that the way to heaven is a blood-stained way. No man has ever reached it without Jesus Christ and he never will.