From the Pulpit of a Holiness Preacher
An email newsletter ministry of Richard D. Swift publishing the sermons of Rev. Reed A. Swift (1899-1973), a Holiness preacher
The following sermon was preached in the Free Methodist Church Yale, Buel, Ball, Michigan circuit in 1931 and at the Free Methodist Churches of Caro, Michigan; Glendale, W. Hollywwod, and Pomona, California.
The long form (written out) of the sermon only went through the 1st point. He had written II to begin the second point but never wrote the rest of the sermon out in long form. The rest was added to the outline form, written on the back of an invitation, which reads, "You are invited to ...St.Clair County Sunday School Convention Monday May 18, 1931 Convention Theme: Learning to Live the Christian Life." Unfortunately, he cut the rest of the invite off so as to just use the back of part of it for his sermon outline. The First point is in long form on the backs of three advertisement pages. One is for a steel cabinet from MacTaggart-Hoffman Co. Port Huron, Michigan. It's dated 1931. The cabinet was advertised for $28.00! and was 36x18x78 inches with double doors.
"Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings, Thou hast ordained strength." Psalm 8:2
Ordained strength- Founded or Chosen strength. as in the case of Moses in Exodus 2:6. It was here, strength was "founded"-"ordained" right in this babe for God put it in the heart of Pharaoh's daughter to have compassion on the baby Moses, even when she knew he was one of the Hebrew children.
This 8th Psalm begins and ends with an exclamation that contains admiration. He admired what he cannot fully comprehend. "Oh Lord our Lord, how excellent is Thy name in all the earth."
Arrangement of the 8th Psalm:
II. The Heavens, with moon and stars
III. Man himself"- Adam Clark
David here speaks as a prophet and gives the exellencies of God's Divinity, goodness, and power which 1st appears in infants. "Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast ordained strength." God gives them power eat and grow. Then they begin to talk while mere babes. God does this.
(1)a. We think of Moses (top of the page)as example of Infants
b. Jesus Himself was an innocent, pure babe and ordained strength that He might still the enemy and the avenger. Luke 2:12
(2). The children who cried "Hosanna" in the temple, knew Jesus through His love and miracles. Matthew 21:15,16
But his made the chief priests and scribes sore displeased. Children have a right to praise God and give glory to His name. They are the greatest in the kingdom of Heaven, because they are the most innocent and free from guilt. We have all sinned and come short of the glory of God, but God is pleased with childrens' innocence. There is no reason why children shouldn't be enthusiastic Christians today as wel as when Christ was on earth. I think, if we can't see them saved in their childhood simplicity, the chances are small to see them saved after they get out into sin.
(3). Babes, meaning childlike acceptance of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and His plan for our lives. We are considered simple children and fools by the worldly-minded, but I believe it takes simplicity and humility to be children of the King of kings Who is coming to reign over all the kingdoms of the earth soon. By the simple prophets who obeyed even to death, the ignorant fishermen, the humble confessors, and the faithful martyrs, hath He stilled the enemy and the avenger, confounded the worldly-minded, and stopped the mouths of devils.
II. God's Glory Revealed in the Heavens Psalm 8:3- "When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained;"
III. What is Man? Psalm 8:4-8- "4-What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?
5For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.
6Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet:
7All sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field;
8The fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth through the paths of the seas."
(1) Base, vile, miserable, from the dust
(2) He can know God and love and serve Him. And, God visits him with:
a. Temporal blessings
b. Iluminated mind with the Holy Ghost
c. The Law and the Gospel
e. Being made lord over the fcreatures.
Man's mistakes limit God's power. Psalm 8:1,9 "O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!"
1. He is the self existing God!
2. God is master over ALL circumstances from cancer to tumors to the small tooth ache! Think of David, the Hebrews, Daniel!
3. God is not a far off God! We must depend on faith, not feelings!
1. Trust God as a friend
2. He is the God of details. That reason that is childlike simplicity moves God and heaven; not pride.
3. Nothing happens but by permission of God. He loves us!
[This concludes my grandfather's sermon. Now, for the book review.]
A Review of Disp(s)ensational Truth by Clarence Larkin
False Doctrines and Erroneous Teachings in "Disp(s)ensational Truth"
Clarence Larkin credits his work to the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. However, there are at least ten false doctrines and erroneous opinions taught by Larkin in his book.
1. Gap Theory of Creation- Pages 21-24
The Institute for Creation Research refutes this false doctrine. Neither Adam Clarke or John Wesley believed in this doctrine. Yes, I've read Earth's Earliest Ages by G.H. Pember. God created the entire universe in six twenty-four hour days. Sin with its curse of death came on the world due to the sin of Adam and Eve. Those who hold to the gap theory only do so to accomodate the theory of geological ages. Unfortunately, this theory is held by "local flood' advocates and every "Christian"? racist organization.
2. Denial of the Sabbath- Page 31
Larkin teaches that the command to keep the sabbath or one day in seven is done away with in the New Testament. Even some antinomian disp(s)ensationalists don't believe the sabbath was done away with. The Jewish Sabbath was replaced by the First day of the week, which we call Sunday.
3. Keswikian/Suppressionist theology of sin and salvation- Page 52
Answers to the Plymouth Brethren by Daniel Steele refutes this false doctrine.
4. Denial of Entire Sanctification as a Second work of Grace- Pages 55 and 56
This is enough reason to quit reading this book and to doubt any of the author's other opinions on the second coming of Christ.
5. Futuristic interpretation of Daniel's 70th week Pages 70-72
No Bible teacher or expositor believed in this theory before the middle of the 1800's except the Plymouth Brethren. ALL early Protestant writers and leaders and John Wesley, Adam Clarke, W.B. Godbey, Daniel Steele, and several other early Methodist and holiness writers believed Daniel's 70th week was fulfilled by the ministry of John the Baptist and Jesus Christ and ended at the Crucifixion of Christ. The futuristic interpretation of Daniel's 70th week is the foundation of ALL Dispensational Premillennialists: pre, mid, or post tribulation.
6. Pre-Tribulational Secret Rapture/ Misinterpretation of Matthew 24:29-31- Pages 79,80
The teaching of a "pretribulation rapture" began in the churches of America and England in the 1800's. Although H.A. Erdmann was a proponent of the futuristic interpretation of Daniel's 70th week, he at least got his interpretation of these verses right. The 29th verse begins with, "After the Tribulation of those days". There is the sound of a trumpet and the gathering of the elect. This is the Rapture (translation of living saints) and Resurrection of the dead in Christ "After the Tribulation of those days". IThessalonians 4:16,17 says, "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord." Does that sound like a secret rapture? NO! IIThessalonians 2:1-3 says, "Now we beseech you, brethren, by
the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together [the rapture and resurrection of IThess.4] unto him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;" We see here that the day of Christ or Rapture is not to occur until after a falling away (apostacy) and revealing of the man of sin (antiChrist). The early Christians, early Protestants and John Wesley, Adam Clarke, and W.B. Godbey believed the rapture (they didn't call it that) was after the Tribulation. Again, only American and English churches which never had to endure the tribulation of persecution and martyrdom believe in the pre-trib doctrine. A picture of the Raptured saints is given to us in Revelation 7:9-17. In that
passage, we learn that this great multitude of saints "came out of great tribulation". Folks, the orthodox teaching is that the Tribulation began shortly after Pentecost with persecution and martyrdom and continues to this day!
7. Anti-Holiness interpretation of the Sermon on the Mount- Page 86,87
8. Belief that the disembodied souls of "pre-adamites" of the earth of Genesis 1:2 became the origin of demons- Page 101
Any belief in a preadamite race of humans waters down the doctrine of atonement and the Scriptural teaching that Adam was the first man.
9. Interpretation of the Seven Churches of Asia in Revelation 2 and 3 as representative of seven church ages- Pages 128-132
This interpretation was refuted by both Wesley and Clarke and is refuted by Institute for Creation Research founder, Dr. Henry Morris in his Defender's Study Bible.
10. Placing the Rapture of the Church in Revelation 4;1,2 and misinterpreting Revelation 5:8-10 as being the Raptured saints- 128-134
John is not a "type" of the church in Revelation 4:1,2. Telling him to "come up hither" cannot mean the rapture! The 24 elders of Revelation 4 and 5 are symbolic of the souls of the Old and New Testament saints. HA Erdmann in his Notes on Revelation refutes these false claims and places the Rapture in the Sixth Seal of Revelation 6:12-17. The description given by the opening of the Sixth Seal is very similar to that in Matthew 24:29-31. Therefore the Rapture and Resurrection of the dead in Christ occurs during the opening of the Sixth Seal and before the opening of the Seventh Seal of Revelation 8.
Most of Clarence Larkin's Disp(s)ensational views are taught in Dake's Annotated Reference Bible and the Scofield Reference Bible. The system of Dispensationalism is based on the writings of John Nelson Darby (1800–1882) and the Brethren Movement. Writers and teachers of this new eschatology (compared to the older historicist) include J Vernon McGee, Dwight Pentecost, W.E. Blackstone (Jesus is Coming), Hal Lindsey (Late Great Planet Earth), Tim LaHaye (Left Behind series), John Hagee, David Jeremiah, Jack Van Impe, etc. None believe in Holiness and most are antinomian Keswicks.
The Futurist interpretation of Daniel's 70th Week has its origin in the writings of Roman Catholic Jesuit Francisco Ribera (1537–1591). He wrote a 500 page commentary on the Book of Revelation. This commentary established the futurist interpretation of Bible prophecy. It was meant to counter the Protestant assertion that the Papacy is the antiChrist and Roman Catholicism is the Beast of Revelation 13. He taught that the 1260 days/42 months/time, times, half a time of Daniel and Revelation was to be taken literally and was half of Daniel's 70th Week. Joseph Seiss (1823–1904), a Lutheran theologian and writer, is known for his religion writings on pyramidology and dispensationalism. His writings helped modernize and systematize dispensationalism and a futurist interpretation of Daniel's 70th Week and the Book of Revelation.
The Historicist interpretation of Daniel's prophecies in Daniel 7-12 and the Book of Revelation were the teachings of the Christian church up until the time of Augustine. They were the teachings of ALL Protestant leaders, teachers, expositors, and preachers until Darby came along. Until Darby, ALL Christians were "Post Tribulation". They believed the Tribulation began with the persecution of Christians soon after Pentecost. They believed that the Tribulation would get worse when the "Great falling away" and the "man of sin (antichrist) was revealed. ALL Christians believed Daniel's 70th Week ended with Christ's crucifixion until Darby came along.
I'll stick with Adam Clarke, John wesley, Daniel Steele, A.M. Hills, and W.B. Godbey and the orthodox historicist premillennial view.
Yours for Scriptural Holiness,
Richard D. Swift
505 Hickory Hills Drive
Dexter, MO 63941
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