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 hoiness preacher.
The following sermon was preached in the Free Methodist Church in Yale, Ball, Buel, and Caro, Michigan and Glendale, W Hollywood, and Mira Loma, California and in the Bible Missionary Church in Cucamonga, California (1959)
Eccentricity of Evangelicals
"They said He is beside Himself" or mad! The eccentricity of Christianity! Eccentric means against the general run of things; peculiar because of not being in harmony with the rest of the world. Every Christian is eccentric in the eyes of sinners.
There are times when every Christian has to offend the worldly minded soul. Even friends? Our pleasures are not found where the worldly minded find theirs.
I. Christ was a Prophet, Priest, and King. Yet, He was a man of sorrow and grief over sin, but He came to heal men of disease of soul and body. His disciples called Him mad or beside Himself. The scribes said He hath beezlebub. Shame! He paid the price for our redemption in temptation, insults, Gethsemane, and Calvary! Here on earth!
"He came to redeem us from all iniquity and purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works". We are eccentric too.
II. The world feels the same of every real Christian today. We must lose our life and "find it Lord in Thee". The new birth is a radical change for a worldling. A new creature in Christ Jesus! Teh things we once loved, we now hate. The things we once hated, we now love.
After Pentecost, they said the disciples were drunk. Festus called Paul, mad! People may call you mad for going to church and prayermeeting all the time!
III. The more active and zealous your religion is, the more the world will criticize you. But eccentricity without Christ is fanaticism.
IV. Three qualities for Christian eccentricity (after being saved and sanctified)
A. Law abiding, socially pure, peace makers
B. Calm in storm and tempest
C. Consistent! Perfection of common sense
"Jesus coming may be any day, hour, or moment. Christ urges three things:
1st- That we should wait patiently!
2nd- That we should watch anxiously!
3rd- That we should work faithfully!"- Rev Edward Borders