To those who are conscious of having lived unworthily and yet long for a larger and fuller life; and those who, in noble moments, aspire to usefulness, but somehow, amidst the mazes of a luxurious, worldly, self-seeking age, have missed their way and would be thankful for a friendly voice to lead them out, these pages are dedicated by their brother. The Author INTRODUCTION
The sermons in this volume were prepared in the rush of my regular work, with no thought of publication. The last three sermons in this volume were preached at the Revivalist campmeeting, near Cincinnati, O., in June, 1905, and taken down by shorthand reporters. After the preaching of the last one, dear old Dr. Godbey arose and put his arms around my neck, and said: “While you were preaching, God gave a message to me for you. He wants you to give a volume of sermons to the young preachers and teachers of Holiness, including the sermon you have preached this morning. I want you to grant me the privilege of writing the introduction.” This is how I came to publish this book, and the following is the introduction written by Dr. Godbey:
At 11 A. M., the last Sunday of Salvation Park Camp-meeting, Ohio, 1905, Rev. A. M. Hills, D. D., President of the Texas Holiness University, preached a powerful sermon on the Holy Ghost, to a vast audience of Holiness people from all parts of the United States, British America, and quite a sprinkle from the Old World and the West India Islands. Seventy-five minutes they hung spellbound on the eloquent lips of the magnetic preacher; his whole physiognomy, supernaturally radiant with the celestial splendor and flashing like lightning in all directions, was eminent from the indwelling Holy Ghost, whose glorious truth the man of God was heroically dispensing; he was even miraculously illuminated and energized by the Omnipotent Author.
The effects of the sermon on the multitude were marvelous. They seemed to be literally transported into the actual presence of the Almighty; overawed, electrified and thrillingly entranced, as if the archangel of doom had descended, and the dead were rising responsive to his trumpet call, and all gathering before the Great White Throne. In conclusion, responsive to the stentorian appeal of the enthusiastic preacher, “Will you be true to the Holy Ghost?” the entire multitude sprang to their feet, and scores made for the altar. A Pentecostal scene utterly indescribable followed; meanwhile, many prayed through into the kingdom, and pilgrims entered Beulah Land by dozens.
Meanwhile, God spoke to me to ask the preacher to publish the sermon, and with it as many others as He would give him, for the evangelization of the world, through the instrumentality of the Holiness people who are this day girdling the globe and preaching the Gospel of full salvation, Pentecostal power, and the Lord’s coming, to all nations. Therefore, this book is of Divine authorship, through the humble instrumentality of our excellent brother.
God is raising up an army of evangelists, male and female, in all nations, indiscriminate of race, color, nationality and religion; even miraculously saving and sanctifying the poor victims of sin, down at the bottom of slumdum; transforming saloon-keepers, drunkards, bums, thugs and harlots into flaming preachers of this glorious Gospel. A very small percentage of this vast evangelistic host, now preaching beneath every sky, has ever enjoyed educational opportunities. Therefore, it is really a sine qua non of their greatest possible efficiency to take all possible short cuts to the Biblical exegesis indispensable not only to qualify them to preach the everlasting Gospel, but to fortify them against the multitudinous, dangerous errors which Satan’s counterfeit preachers are everywhere propagating to the fatal delusion and destruction of unsuspecting millions who are captured by their sophistries, hailing them as angels of light, while they are really wolves in sheep’s clothing. Thus beguiled and hallucinated, they are led away till, hopelessly lassoed by Satan, they drop into Hell. Hence the transcendent importance on the part of all who preach the living Word, (i. e., all of the Holiness people, who alone are competent to preach full salvation, from the simple fact that we can only efficiently preach what we experience), to fortify themselves by reading good books. Consequently, this book of sermons will prove a thesaurus of wisdom and guidance in the hands of our thousands of young preachers, who this day, washed in the blood and baptized with fire, are going to the ends of the earth. The Holiness books are, in God’s providence, His teachers of His blessed Word. If you do not read them, you are in great danger of doing immense harm, and seriously damaging souls by preaching error. In this way the cause of Holiness has suffered much detriment. You may have a true and genuine experience and yet, through ignorance of the Bible, teach all sorts of error.
Now to the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, I commend this book of sermons, with all of the other valuable books written by its author, our beloved friend and brother in Christ. Showers of blessings on all who shall read this book.
W. B. Godbey