Posts Tagged ‘Wesleyan Holiness’

I have had the privilege of meeting John Henderson in the Concerned Nazarenes Facebook Group. This Group is primarily concerned about the invasion of postmodern heresies into the Church of the Nazarene denomination. But the Group is also  working for the revival of born again, biblically sound, “fundamentalist” Wesleyan Holiness. Following is a repost of John’s combined articles on Entire Sanctification, originally posted here.

I am in the process of adding links to John’s articles below, as well as emphasizing certain points by bolding, and inserting comments in [brackets].

Combined Articles on Entire Sanctification
By John Henderson

The following are articles and portions of articles I have posted recently on Concerned Nazarenes. Since a discussion has arisen about it, I thought it proper to repost this information.

Scriptural Holiness

There has been a neglect of Scriptural holiness in a general sense throughout the Wesleyan holiness movement. The drift has been going on for some time as revealed by the now well-known message of Dr. Keith Drury of the Wesleyan Church, “The Holiness Movement is Dead!” It was a message that alarmed and challenged those of us in attendance at that Presidential Breakfast of the Christian Holiness Association in 1995 at First Church of the Nazarene in Nashville, Tennessee. It was a message that completely redirected my perception and determination of what I already instinctively knew was happening.

Dr. Millard Reed, Trevecca Nazarene College’s new president, was to be the next speaker in a late morning service. He went to his home nearby and completely re-wrote his message to supplement what Drury had just presented in order to show the possibilities of holiness renewal. It was a perfect supplement. With the disease of a dead holiness movement now fully exposed and the possibilities of recovery encouraged, I felt compelled to try to do something about it in some way. What could a powerless, uninfluential aging nobody do? That was my starting point.

We continued the slide as bemoaned by Dr. Drury some ten years later when he observed that, although there was an initial response that day that seemed positive and enthusiastic, nothing was actually done over that period to raise us from the deathbed of the movement.

As we are in 2014, almost another 15 years later, we see that not only have we remained dead and the corpse is now rotted, but the skeleton has been bleached and re-fleshed in the progressive new age apparel of mysticism and doctrines of demons. Even John Wesley has been morphed into the postmodern mold to the point that Scriptural holiness is counterfeited in a fabricated frame of reference, thus becoming a false doctrine itself. They have become words without substance and void of life. What could be worse than neglected holiness? Could it be hypocritical holiness or counterfeited holiness?

Drury predicted that if the heirs of the Scriptural holiness movement did not turn it around, God would seek out other venues and other people. I think He is doing just that at this point in time because the caretakers of the holiness movement have abandoned it and gone over to the enemy, even opposing in deed and word the very truth of the matter. In the very midst of “holiness apostasy” (my term), God is, at this very moment, raising up the dry bones, as it were, to once again become His mighty army of Scriptural holiness.

Although Scriptural holiness is defined in doctrinal statements and exegetical teachings, it is more than how we define and explain it. It is the very heart of the victorious Christian life and a necessity for all believers who would follow their Lord in total commitment.

Scriptural holiness is just that—Scriptural—and it transcends all philosophical and theological expositions of it. If it is only of the head, that is not enough! It must be more and also be of the beating heart of the soul. It is the epitome of Christ in us, the hope of glory. It is His life in us on the highest plane of spiritual living through the fullness of the Holy Spirit in sanctifying grace, a grace that is first instantaneous and then progressive throughout a life of obedience to the will of God. It is the sanctified believer following Christ, walking as He walked; walking with Him. It is being made pure as He is pure, righteous as He is righteous, and, yes, perfect as He is perfect. “As He is, so are we in this world” (1 John 4:17). Being in this world we are not of this world!

Consider this comparison. Adam was created as a perfect man. That was God’s design for the human race. He was to multiply and replenish the earth with his kind. Instead, Adam sinned and sin came upon his descendants. He then reproduced fallen humanity with a carnal nature—a deformity of the creation of God.

Jesus reverses that on a higher level. He saves from sin, then sanctifies us wholly through the fullness of the Spirit (baptism of the Spirit), thus returning us to what John Wesley correctly calls Christian perfection. Just as Adam was able at all times to obey or disobey, so is the sanctified believer. I should hasten to remind us that Adamic perfection and Christian perfection are not the same. Adam’s was perfection by creation and the sanctified Christian’s is made perfect (a spiritual sense of perfection) by grace through faith. Both are tempted to sin but both needed not yield to temptation. Both were granted the gift of free-will. Adam failed. We need not! The sanctified can still sin but are not under bondage to sin. Any sin must be forgiven.

Sin has never resided in the flesh. All the affections of the “flesh” are spiritual, not bodily. It is only in the spirit of man and there it infects the human soul. The host (the mortal body) does indeed suffer because of the sins of the spirit but is not responsible for those sins.
Scriptural Holiness, a Practical Experience

I watched a video several years ago of a camp meeting service where the evangelist was preaching on Scriptural holiness. As the cameras panned the audience and the preaching continued, I noticed two things: (1) the evangelist was “cut and dried.” Each point was like a lecture preparing you for the exam to follow; and (2) the audience was bored out of their “gourd”.
Scriptural holiness is much more than a doctrinal system or a systematic outline. There is a holiness doctrine for sure because there is a dynamic reality we call by various terms but all referring to the same grace of God. The terms are generally interchangeable, usually describing some comprehensible aspect of Scriptural holiness. Even Scriptural holiness is one of the terms. Some will parse the words, but they actually are so interchangeable as make that unnecessary. A Scottish educator of the mid-20th century, Stanley Banks, provides some of the thoughts for this article. Aside from Scripture quotes, direct quotes will be his comments.

Banks’ use of concise concepts proves very useful for our purposes here. Recognizing that it is possible to so mishandle the loftiest statements in the Scriptures on holiness in such an objective and prospective manner that the actual realization of being entirely sanctified is missed, it is necessary to always be Scriptural rather than merely theological or philosophical. Philosophy and theology serve the Scriptures, and not the other way around.

The life of Christ is our example of this holy life in Christ. His life is our pattern for living in holiness. We are to be Christlike, not analogous to Christ. It is His nature in us, not something to merely mimic. A Christian is neither almost saved nor almost sanctified. It is always complete salvation and entire sanctification.

We should understand that there is “a sin that dwelleth in me,” as Paul says it. “It is something distinct from the acts of sin, and is related to those acts as is cause to effect.” Banks says it is the “infection of nature” that remains in the regenerated.

Romans chapters 6-8 provide several descriptions of the same nature: the old man (hereditary evil); the body of sin (accumulated evil); inward enmity (hostility to God); the law of sin (downward drag); and the inward moral corruption (carnality from the fall of Adam). It is the “germ of sin that has caused all disruption and perversion in the human nature, and that causes us to be so un-Christlike, and which in its very essence is antagonistic to the operation of the Holy Spirit’s activities within us to make us Christlike.”

There is no hope of our being Christlike in the fullest sense unless God does something about this indwelling sin nature that is incurably hostile towards God. There cannot be a fight going on. Suppression only leads to eventual explosion. There has to be full surrender on our part and the “old man” must be crucified so that Christ reigns unchallenged in our hearts. It is all His work in “destroying” the old man. We cannot do a thing about it any more than we can save our own souls. It is as much an act of faith as it is of being born again, relying solely on His work in us.

This deliverance can only be enacted by God in the believer. The unredeemed are in no position to deal with the carnal nature or for God to deal with it. They are disqualified from this until they are regenerated. They are lost and need first to be saved. Once they have been saved by grace, they are in position to “go on unto perfection” as the Scriptures admonish. Thus, entire sanctification is attainable only by the born-again. This is clearly shown to be so in the prayer of Jesus in John 17 when He prayed, “sanctify them through Thy truth.” The “them” are all believers of all time, just as Jesus made it clear in John 17.

The Executor of all grace is the Holy Spirit. He brings us to salvation and He brings us to sanctification. Being born of the Spirit is a crisis of faith and being purified in our hearts is a crisis of faith. Both are instantaneous and both are definite and drastic works of grace enacted by the Holy Spirit in response to our faith. Salvation is the rescue and sanctification is the empowering. Someone once said that in salvation we have the Holy Spirit and in sanctification the Holy Spirit has us.

In sanctification we move from the realm of struggling with the sin nature as described in Romans 7 to full liberty in the fullness of the Spirit in Romans 8. We have not been paroled from carnality; we have been set fully free.

We speak of being filled with the Spirit. It is a simple thing to understand that if we are filled with the Spirit, there is nothing else there. Our having been emptied of self, He has the whole heart to Himself. The potential at salvation is made actual in sanctification. We are now empowered (His power working in us) to a life of dependence—a constant reliance on the Blood of Christ for continual cleansing and strengthening. “We must abide in the place where the precious blood goes on cleansing.” Those who really know the mind of John Wesley may recall that he once wrote Adam Clarke that “to retain the grace of God is more than to gain it” and “this should be strongly urged upon all those who have tasted perfect love.” (Perfect love was one of Wesley’s favorite terms for Scriptural holiness.)

It continues as a life of discipline and development. In full cooperation with the Holy Spirit, the sanctified person necessarily launches into a life-pattern of the discipline of body, mind, emotions, and will. Nothing is held from Him in reserve for self-indulgence. The purity of the heart develops into maturity of character and experience. The world can see the difference. They will know that we have been with Jesus. It is rightly called a mountaintop experience as compared to Moses being on Sinai with God and his face shining when he returned.

Do you want to see a real revival? This will bring it about. The world and the backsliding church are plunging headlong together into perdition and there is no rescue possible other than the faithful evangelistic drive by a sanctified Church that is committed to holiness of heart and life-style and that is followed by boldly witnessing to that world and apostate church without fear or favor.

NOTE: While it is sadly true that the holiness movement has had more than its fair share of shallow and often hypocritical “testimonies” of entire sanctification, I believe there have been much more that were genuine such as those presented in the following:
Understanding Entire Sanctification Through Testimonies

This matter that we in the Christian community variously refer to as sanctification, being filled with the Holy Spirit, holiness; and other terms is being, in my opinion largely neglected for any number of excuses, even by those who hold to sanctification as what is often called a second work of grace.

The general concept of Christian holiness is not merely a pet doctrine of those who hold to the doctrines of Wesley or the Keswicks. There is ample evidence that it is generally accepted among evangelical Christians as an integral part of the Christian experience, however defined and taught. It is not my intentions here to delve into the doctrine all that much, if at all. That can be for another time if needful. I want to go directly to the experience of what I choose to call entire sanctification, that moment after the new birth when the believer is endued with the power of the Holy Spirit—the divine baptism of the Holy Spirit—and cleansed from the dominion of inbred sin through the crucifixion of the old man or carnal nature. I use as a guide the testimonies of several Christians in a single meeting of a day of prayer at Emmanuel Bible College in Birkenhead, Scotland Wednesday, March 6, 1946. Reporting was the college founder, J. D. Drysdale.

Important aspects involved in the testimonies speak, I think, to us today in a very significant and challenging way. Drysdale sets up the testimonies with the statement: “When one has experienced the baptism of the Holy Ghost and fire (Matt. 3:11), as I did in 1906, one can never be satisfied with formal religion, or lukewarmness in one’s own heart.”

I offer excerpts from four testimonies together in the hopes of providing a thread of what we face in our own lives in 2014. All those speaking appear to be long-term Christians. I number each speaker for clarity.

Speaker 1: “I became conscious that the old lusts and passions were beginning to take hold upon me, and were bringing me into captivity.” [This person had sought the blessing of entire sanctification several times in the past and deeply longed for holiness and purity. The person then stated:] “Suddenly the Holy Ghost fell upon me, and I felt within myself that I had been liberated from the power of indwelling sin, that the old man had received the death blow, and that, at long last, I was free within.”

Speaker 2: “For a long time I had been conscious that God had something better for me than I was experiencing . . . I wanted to plan my own life. I was in utter agony for the blessing of a clean heart.” [He (I use the editorial “he”) continued until he then said,] “I, too, cried out for deliverance from the bondage from within, and glory to God, He set me free. . . . The Word of God is alive to me now and it is easy to get through to God in prayer. Oh, how long I have been trying to reform myself but now the Lord is transforming me by the power of His Holy Spirit.”

Speaker 3: “He faithfully revealed to me that everything must be put upon the altar, then the fire fell and burned up indwelling sin.”

Speaker 4 [an especially significant testimony]: “I knew that some needed the blessing of a clean heart, but never thought that I myself needed it. I often professed to have it, and it was this old profession to which I was so tenaciously clinging that blurred my vision and kept me from acknowledging my need. And yet, how powerless I was! Many a time I longed to be free, and was often perplexed because I had no more liberty. . . . I began to pray, and tried to praise like others, but in my heart I was as dry as a stick. . . . I kept on praying for others, and even sought to help others through; but all the time, deep down in my heart, I knew there was not complete satisfaction; and as questions arose in my heart, I tried not to yield to them, and kept looking back to the time when I got the experience, in the hope that I would get peace in that way. At last, when nearly all the others had got through, the Lord broke me down. Oh, the pride of past professions! When I had opened my heart to the Lord, confessed my state and laid all on the altar, my trouble now was to claim the blessing by faith, and this I did by taking God at His word. Immediately I did so, the witness came and my heart was filed with praise.”

There were many other testimonies, each powerful and convicting. That was a great day for that Bible College. God is no different today. That blessing is for us here and now as it was in 1906 for Drysdale and 1946 for those at the college day of prayer. It is there for the receiving if we but forsake our pride and seek only Him. Know Him in His fullness first, then seek out the explanations.

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Paul admonishes us to:

“… be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Rom 12:2, KJV)

Yet how often do we encounter professing Christians who are conforming to this world – who after years of claiming to be born again are perfectly comfortable drinking, or smoking, or “clubbing”, or swearing, or dancing, or watching promiscuity-filled soaps, or laughing at dirty jokes, or reading horoscopes, or practicing yoga, or practicing contemplative prayer, or striving for material wealth, etc. etc.? Far too often, I’m afraid.

Sorry if I sound judgmental here. But what about those Christians around us who are doing these things? Should they not be corrected, warned that, for one thing, their witness to unbelievers is being destroyed by their own behavior?

Bottom line: all who claim to be born again Christians should be “no compromise Christians”. Following is an excellent list of links discussing this, by By Martha Mac of SO4J.com. Click here for the original source of this article.

Note – a number of these 50 signs are reflected in my own “old fashioned” separatist Wesleyan Holiness beliefs, as well as in The Fundamentals of 1910-1915 which I hold so dear. I’m not saying I never trip up and sin/compromise – I am saying these 50 signs are what I strive for, with God’s help.


Signs, Fruit, & Evidences of a No Compromise Christian

50 Signs of a No Compromise Christian - SO4J.com

By Martha Mac / SO4J.com ® / SO4J-TV

INTRO: 50 Signs of a No Compromise Christian – Looks at the Signs, Fruit, & Evidences of a No Compromise Christian or True Believer from the Scriptures in God’s Word. The Purpose is to: Provoke, Exhort, and Stir the Hearts of all those who call themselves a Believer in Jesus Christ— Provoking Believers to Biblically become More & More Conformed into the Image of Jesus Christ in all we: Say, Think, or Do (1 Cor 10:31, 2 Cor 3:16-17,18). This is an SO4J Bible Study about Sanctification & Holiness for the Believer(1 Pet 1:14-17)— it is NOT a set of Rules or a List to Follow in order to be Saved.

PLEASE NOTE: SO4J-TV believes that we are Not Saved by Works – Eph 2:8-9 (Legalism), but our Faith is Proven by our Works (James 2:14-20, Matt 3:8). This is NOT a Bible Study on Obedience to Rules in order to be Saved, or about Legalism. If there is No Obedience to Gods Word (1 John 2:3-6, John 14:15) & one Continues In Sin (1 John 3:8-10) then we’ll have to Face the Terrifying Consequences of Heb 10:26-31 which Jesus Warns us about in Matt 7:21-23 where MANY who Thought they were Saved will spend Eternity in Hell. This is about how a True Believer should Reflect the GLORIOUS IMAGE OF CHRIST in our Lives (2 Cor 3:18, 2 Cor 5:17, Matt 5:16), by living HOLY & CLEAN lives (1 Pet 1:14-15,16-17) for GOD’S GLORY (1 Cor 10:31)— and Obey God’s Word out of a LOVE FOR JESUS (John 14:15,21,23-24, John 15:10,14, John 3:36, John 8:31, Luke 6:46).

SO4J-TV also understands that Christians are not perfect— they still Sin once in a while (so to speak – 1 John 2:1, 1 Cor 3:1-15). We want to reach out to those people who call themselves Christians— yet use the Grace of God as a License to Sin (Rom 6:1-23, Rom 6:15-16). We are concerned that there are MANY “Christians” (Matt 7:21-22, 23) who are NOT ready to face Jesus on Judgment Day (Heb 9:27). Our Aim is to provoke all of us to Examine our Faith with the God’s Word (2 Cor 13:5), and make sure that we are Biblically Saved, and Ready to Face Jesus on Judgment Day (2 Cor 5:10).

"If What You SAY, THINK, or DO is Contrary to God's Word, Then You Are Being DECEIVED!" Martha Mac SO4J.com


50 Signs of a No Compromise Christian

50 Signs of a No Compromise Christian - SO4J.com


By Martha Mac  / SO4J.com ® / SO4J-TV


  1 – They Do NOT CONFORM To The Things Of This World—Their #1 Goal Is To Be Like Jesus
2 – They LOVE THE LORD their God with all their Heart, Soul, Mind, and Strength
3 – They Are SEPARATING Themselves From ALL Ungodliness And The Things Of This WORLD
4 – They Are Walking Down The Narrow Road Of God’s HOLINESS—They Are God’s Holy Remnant
5 – They Do NOT WATCH WORLDLY (Lustful, Evil..): TV & Movies, Internet Pornography, Computer Games
6 – They Do NOT LOOK UPON Worldly Magazines & Books From Celebrity Magazines To Pornography…
8 – They Do NOT LOOK UP TO WORLDLY IDOLS Such As: Singers, Movie Stars, Sports Figures…
9 – They Do NOT PARTNER UP WITH UNBELIEVERS And Those Who Compromise Their Walk With Jesus
10 – They PURSUE PURE AND GODLY FRIENDSHIPS That Inspire Them To Be More Like Jesus
11 – They Display Christ-likeness In Their THOUGHT-LIFE & ATTITUDES – A Beattitude Attitude
12 – They Are HUMBLE and Have Child-like Faith
13 – They REFUSE LUKEWARMNESS—Having “One Foot In GOD’S WORD, And One Foot In The WORLD”
14 – They Seek To Please The Lord through GOOD DEEDS & HAVING A SERVANT’S HEART
16 – They SEEK FIRST God’s Kingdom, NOT Worldly Wealth & Possessions
17 – They’d Rather SUFFER & BE POOR & NOT Compromise With The World Than Be Rich & Famous—Content
18 – They Are GENEROUS & are GIVERS Whether They Are Poor Or Have Much
19 – They Are SURRENDERING ALL To Follow Jesus—They Are “Taking Up Their Cross Daily”
20 – They’ve STOPPED PRACTICING SINAnd When They Do Sin There Is Deep Sorrow
21 – They SPEAK OUT & WARN PEOPLE Of God’s Coming Judgments, And PREACH THE GOSPEL
23 – They LOVE and DO GOOD To Fellow Christians
25 – They Are DOERS Of The Word, Not Merely HEARERS— Faith Without WORKS is Dead
26 – They FEAR THE LORD And Turn Away From Evil
27 – They Do NOT Seek The Approval Of Man, But Seek Only To PLEASE THE LORD
28 – They Are NOT HYPOCRITES—Giving God Mere Lip Service
30 – They PRAY FERVENT PRAYERS, And Pray Often With Fellow Believers
31 – They STUDY & TEACH GOD’S WORD & HIS WAYS To Sinners & Believers—Making Disciples
33 – They Are READY, WAITING, AND EAGERLY ANTICIPATING The Soon Return Of Jesus Christ
34 – They LOVE GOD’S COMMANDMENTS & HIS WORD, Reading It Daily And Memorizing It
35 – They Make Use Of Every OPPORTUNITY To Do Good & Preach The Gospel— They’re “Fire Snatchers”
36 – They PRODUCE MUCH FRUIT For Jesus— They’re PRODUCTIVE with the GOSPEL & Are GODLY
37 – They Are Co-Heirs With Christ: And Share The SUFFERINGS OF JESUS By “Crucifying Their Flesh”
38 – They Understand GOD’S ETERNAL PURPOSES For His HOLY PEOPLE Vs. This Temporal Evil World
39 – They Know They Are Merely Passing Through This World, And Their REAL HOME Is With The Lord
40 – They Do Everything For The GLORY OF GOD
42 – They CLEARLY Understand The Gospel & CLEARLY PREACH God’s Word With BOLDNESS
44 – They Put NO CONFIDENCE IN THEIR FLESH – They Are Decreasing & Christ is Increasing
45 – They Have INTEGRITY, HARD WORK, & PURSUE RIGHTEOUSNESS— They do Not Lie, Steal, Cheat
46 – They Are Always VERY THANKFUL TO GOD For His— Kindness, Provisions, Protection, etc
48 – They Acknowledge & Obey GOD’S WILL For Their Lives
50 – They do NOT allow the CARES & WORRIES Of This Life to DOMINATE their MIND & CONVERSATIONS

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NOTE – The blog below is not my latest blog. To find more recent blogs, browse through the “Archives” section to the lower right.  ——>  ——>  ——>

(revised 01/02/13)

I have posted many blogs covering occultish Spiritual Formation (specifically contemplative spirituality) and heretical Emerging/ Emergent teachings.  A number of Wesleyan Holiness denominations are increasingly teaching these heresies.

And, these Wesleyan Holiness denominations are taking part in a number of joint projects. There may be additional joint projects, but we are tracking the following:

Global Wesleyan Alliance (GWA) ( note – these are prospective members – the Alliance is still in formation)
– UPDATE: press release describing 2012 meeting of GWA – 14 prospective members as of Dec. 2011, 18 as of Dec. 2012
National Association of Evangelicals (NAE)
National Council of Churches (NCC)
Wesleyan Holiness Consortium (WHC) (producers of the Holiness Manifesto; 16+ denominations; for the official list of Participating Denominations click here)
WordAction curriculum (WA)(6 denominations)
World Methodist Council (WMC)

I am working on adding stats for each member denomination.  Also, I am adding links to articles showing how contemplative and Emerging/Emergent heresies are entering each denomination (some more than others).

Note: it is not my intent to “attack” Wesleyan Holiness denominations. On the contrary, I love what Wesleyan Holiness denominations used to stand for. Specifically,  a biblically sound theology which placed priority on the message of Calvary (John 3:16) and personal holiness (Rom. 12:1-2). And the rejection all unbiblical heretical teachings. The Wesleyan Holiness denominations of yesteryear fought modernism tooth and nail. Unlike today’s Wesleyan Holiness denominations listed below, they would have condemned today’s heresies of Spiritual Formation/Contemplative Spirituality and Emerging/Emergent teachings.

I know what these Wesleyan Holiness denominations have lost. I am fighting (along with many others in counter-Emergent discernment ministries) to help these straying denominations hopefully return to a biblically sound theology, rejecting Contemplative Spirituality and Emerging/Emergent teachings.

If the denominations themselves reject correction (as is usually the case), we are encouraging members of these denominations to separate, to leave for biblically sound churches. I recommend Bro. David Cloud’s Independent Fundamentalist Baptist directory – particularly the “two-asterisk” and “three-asterisk”  churches – although these churches vary on some doctrines from fundamentalist Wesleyan Holiness churches of approx. 1890-1942.


nazarenelogo  Assemblies of God  – in NAE, WHC
2010 stats: 12,457 U.S. churches, 1,753,881 U.S. attenders
main Wikipedia article
Assemblies of God (AG) claims to oppose the NAR and other heretical movements, but recent AG activities show otherwise
Repost critiquing the heretical Alpha Course: “ALPHA: New Life or New Lifestyle?”, by Elizabeth McDonald (AG is a big promoter of the Alpha Course)

brethren in christ logo Brethren in Christ Church – in NAE, WHC
Wikipedia article

cma logo Christian & Missionary Alliance– in WHC
Wikipedia article x
Christian & Missionary Alliance Workers will soon be learning Ancient Spiritual Disciplines (12/02/09)
a list of blogs exposing Spiritual Formation in the C&MA

 cma logo Christian & Missionary Alliance – Canada – in WHC

Church of Christ Holiness USA – in GWA
Wikipedia article

churchofgodandersonlogo Church of God – Anderson (aka Church of God Ministries, Inc.) – in GWA, WHC
Wikipedia article

churchofgodclevelandlogoChurch of God – Cleveland – in WHC
Wikipedia article

nazarenelogoChurch of the Nazarene – – in GWA, NAE, WA, WHC, WMC
– Wikipedia article x
Reformed Nazarene website (provides many blogs and links exposing CotN involvement in heresies)

Churches of Christ in Christian Union – in GWA, NAE
Wikipedia article

Congregational Methodist Church – in GWA
Wikipedia article

the evangelical church logo The Evangelical Church of North America – in GWA, WHC

Evangelical Friends Church International – in NAE, WA
my critique of the EFCI and EFC-ER
I have many blogs on my blogsite exposing heresies of the Evangelical Friends (and Quakers in general). Click here for a partial list of my blogs on the Evangelical Friends.
Wikipedia article

 Evangelical Methodist Church – in GWA
Wikipedia article

Evangelical United Methodists – in WA

foursquare logo The Foursquare Church (International Church of the Foursquare Gospel) – – in NAE, WHC
Wikipedia article

nazarenelogoFree Methodist Church USA – in GWA, NAE, WA, WHC, WMC
Wikipedia article

nazarenelogo Grace Communion International – in NAE (joined 1997 as Worldwide Church of God), WHC
Wikipedia article

International Fellowship of Bible Churches – in GWA

ipchlogo International Pentecostal Holiness Church – in NAE, WHC
Wikipedia article

The Methodist Protestant Church – in GWA
Wikipedia article

The Missionary Church, Inc. – in GWA, NAE
Wikipedia article

Pilgrim Holiness Church – in GWA
Wikipedia article

nazarenelogo The Salvation Army – in GWA, NAE, WA, WHC
Wikipedia article
Lighthouse Trails exposes The Salvation Army’s involvement in Spiritual Formation
– “A Simple Way to Begin the Day with Prayer” (Richard Foster, The War Cry, October 1985)
– Cory Harrison, Emergent Salvationism? (blog by an Emergent Salvation Army member)

shield of faith logo4   Shield of Faith – in WHC

united methodist logoUnited Methodist Church – in NAE (observer status), NCC, WHC, WMC
Wikipedia article

*** United Pentecostal Church International (UPCI) – WARNING – Oneness Pentecostals; UPCI was in the WHC at one time, but as of 12/11/12 the UPCI is no longer listed as a member. Why was the UPCI allowed to become a member in the first place?
Wikipedia article

wesleyan church logo The Wesleyan Church – in GWA, NAE, WA, WHC, WMC
Wikipedia article

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The late H. Orton Wiley was one of my favorite Wesleyan Holiness theologians. He was not perfect (no one is), but his writings are far more biblically sound than more recent Nazarene theologians such as Mildred Wynkoop, H. Ray Dunning and Thomas J. Oord. (Click here for my blog which discusses the increasing liberalization of Nazarene theology textbooks over the years.)

Below I’ve reposted Wiley’s list of books on the Atonement and related doctrines, from his three-volume Christian Theology. Click here for the original source of this list – as well as Wiley’s entire three-volume Christian Theology – viewable online.) Note – I’m in the process of alphabetizing this list by author. Also note – the original list was not scanned accurately by those who put Wiley’s three-volume Christian Theology into digital form.

I plan to add links to author bios, as well as links to online books.

Please note that these books present many different theological positions, not just the Wesleyan Holiness position. I am working on separate blogs which list only books of the Wesleyan Holiness position.


Anselm (1033-1109), Cur Deus Homo, English Translation by Deane, Chicago, 1903 (free online Google eBook of first edition, 1858)

Albert Barnes (1798-1870), The Atonement in Its Relation to Law and Moral Govern­ment, Philadelphia, 1859 (free online Google eBook)

Charles Beecher Redeemer and Redeemed, Boston, 1864 (free online Google eBook)

B.R. Brasnett, The Suffering of the Impassible God, 1928

Horace Bushnell (1802-1876), Christ and His Salvation, 1865 (free online Google eBook)[I added this title-DM]

Horace Bushnell, The Vicarious Sacrifice (2 volumes), New York, 1891 (this free online Google eBook  includes both volumes under one cover)

John M. Campbell, The Nature of the Atonement, London, 1873

R.S. Candlish (1806-1873), The Atonement: Its Efficacy and Extent, Edinburgh, 1867 (free online Google eBook)

S. Cave, The Scripture Doctrine of Sacrifice, T. & T.  Clark

H.S. Coffin, Social Aspects of the Cross, New York, 1911

Thomas J. Crawford, The Doctrine of the Holy Scripture Respecting the Atonement, 1875

M.C. D’Arcy, The Pain of This World and the Providence of God, 1936

R.W. Dale, The Atonement, New York, 1876

James    Denney,    The Atonement and the Modern Mind, London, 1903

James    Denney,    The Christian Doctrine of Reconciliation, New York, 1918

James    Denney,    The Death of Christ, New York, 1903

George C.    Foley,    Anselm’s Theory of the Atonement, New York, 1909

L.W.    Grensted,    A Short History of the Doctrine of the Atonement

Grotius,    De Satisfactione (Editions from 1617-1730), English Translation by Foster, Andover

James    Hinton,    The Mystery of Pain, 1866

F.R.M.    Hitchcock,    The Atonement and Modern Thought, London, 1911

A.A.    Hodge,    The Atonement, Philadelphia, 1867

E.W.    Johnson,    Suffering, Punishment and Atonement, 1919

Albert C.    Knudson,    The Doctrine of Redemption, Abingdon, 1933

J. S.    Lidgett,    The Spiritual Principle of the Atonement, London, 1901

Clark Robert    Mackintosh,    Historic Theories of the Atonement, New York, 1920

H.R.    Mackintosh,    The Christian Experience of Forgiveness

William    Magee,    Scripture Doctrine of Atonement and Sacrifice, New York, 1839

Howard    Malcom,    The Extent and Efficacy of the Atonement, Philadelphia, 1870

F.D.    Maurice,    The Doctrine of Sacrifice Deduced from the Scriptures, 1854

John    Miley,    The Atonement in Christ, New York, 1879

R.C.    Moberly,    Atonement and Personality, New York, 1901

R.C.    Moberly,    Sorrow, Sin and Beauty, 1903

J.K.    Mozley,    The Doctrine of the Atonement, Scribners, 1916

J.K.    Mozley,    The Impassibility of God, 1926

H.N.    Oxenham,    The Catholic Doctrine of Atonement, London, 1865

A.S.    Peake,    The Problem of Suffering in the Old Testament, 1904

Leighton    Pullen,    The Atonement, London, 1913

Lonsdale    Ragg,    Aspects of the Atonement, London, 1904

Rashdall,    The Idea of Atonement in Christian Theology, MacMillan, 1920

G.W.    Richards,    Christian Ways of Salvation

Ritschl,    The Scripture Doctrine of Justification and Reconciliation,

H. Wheeler    Robinson,    Suffering: Human and Divine, MacMillan, 1939

A.    Sabbatier,    The Doctrine of the Atonement and Its Historical Evolution, English Translation, New York, 1904

D.W.    Simon,    Reconciliation Through Incarnation, Edinburgh, 1898

D.W.    Simon,    The Redemption of Man, Edinburgh, 1899

G.    Smeaton,    The Doctrine of the Atonement as Taught by Christ Himself, Edinburgh, 1868

P.L.    Snowden,    The Atonement and Ourselves, London, 1919

G.B.    Stevens,    The Christian Doctrine of Salvation, 1905

William    Symington,    The Atonement and Intercession of Jesus Christ, New York, 1849

T.V.    Tymns,    The Christian Idea of Atonement, London, 1904

Ralph    Wardlaw,    Discourses on the Nature and Extent of the Atonement, Glasgow, 1844

J.S.    Whale,    The Christian Answer to the Problem of Evil, 1936


The best treatment of the Preliminary States of Grace, as also the subjects of Justification and Regeneration, will be found in the standard works on Systematic Theology. Representing the earlier, or what is some times known as modified Arminianism, are the following: Watson, Insti­tutes; Wakefield, Christian Theology; Summers, Systematic Theology; Pope, Compendium of Christian Theology; and Ralston, Elements of Divinity. The last named work contains an excellent discussion of the Calvinistic and Arminian positions. As representative of the so-called later Arminianism, Raymond, Systematic Theology; Miley, Systematic Theology; Whedon, Commentaries, and A. M. Hills, Fundamental Chris­tian Theology. In the Calvinistic theology, Dr. W. G. T. Shedd represents the realistic position, and Dr. Charles Hodge, the Federal or Representa­tive position. Among the older works on both the Calvinistic and Ar­minian positions, may be mentioned the following:

James    Arminius,    Writings, Volume III

Albert Taylor    Bledsoe,    Examination of Edwards on the Will, An; Philadelphia, 1845

Albert Taylor    Bledsoe,    Theodicy, A; or Vindication of Divine Glory, New York, 1853

John    Calvin,    Institutes, Book III, Chapters xxi-xxiv

Edward    Copleston,    Enquiry into the Doctrines of Necessity and Predestination, London, 1821

Jonathan    Edwards,    A Divine and Supernatural Light Imparted to the Soul by the Spirit of God, 1734 (A sermon noted for its spiritual philosophy)

Jonathan    Edwards,    An Essay on the Freedom of the Will, 1754

W.    Fisk,    The Calvinistic Controversy, New York 1837

John    Fletcher,    Checks to Antinomianism, Volumes I-H

John    Forbes,    Predestination and Free Will Reconciled, or Calvinism and Arminianism United in the Westminster Confession, 1878

Randolph S.    Foster,    Objections to Calvinism, Cincinnati, 1848 (many editions)

Martin    Luther,    Bondage of the Will

Asa    Mahan,    Election and the Influence of the Holy Spirit, 1851

Asa    Mahan,    System of Intellectual Philosophy, New York, 1845

J.B.    Mozley,    Augustinian Doctrine of Predestination, 1855

Henry Philip    Tappan    Doctrine of the Will Applied to Moral Agency and Responsibility, 1841 (Single volume, Glasgow, 1857)

Henry Philip    Tappan    Doctrine of the Will Determined by an Appeal to Consciousness, 1840

Henry Philip    Tappan,    Review of Edwards on the Will, A, New York, 1839

George    Tomline,    A Refutation of Calvinism, London, 1811

Thomas C.    Upham,    Treatise on the Will, 1850 [early Wesleyan Holiness?]

Richard    Watson,    Theological Institutes, Part II, Chapters xxv-xxviii

John    Wesley,    Works, Volume VI, On Predestination

Daniel D.    Whedon,    Freedom of the Will, 1864


Here again, the best treatment of the subject will be found in the standard works on theology. The clearest and most specific treatment is found in the earlier treatises.           ‘

James    Buchanan,    The Doctrine of Justification, Edinburgh, 1867

John    Calvin,    Institutes, III, xi-xxiii

G.    Cross,    Christian Salvation, Chicago, 1925

John    Davenant,    A Treatise on Justification (2 volumes), London, 1844­1846

R.N.    Davies,    A Treatise on Justification, Cincinnati, 1878

Jonathan    Edwards    (the younger), On the Necessity of the Atonement, and Its Consistency with Free Grace in Forgiveness, Three addresses, 1875, which form the basis of the “Edwardean Theory” of the Atonement, generally accepted by the “New England School.”

Faber,    The Primitive Doctrine of Justification

Julius Charles    Hare,    Scriptural Doctrine of Justification

Charles Abel    Heurtiey,    Justification, 1845 (Bampton Lectures)

M.    Loy,    The Doctrine of Justification, Columbus, Ohio, 1869, 1882

Martin Luther, On Galatians

H.R.    Mackintosh,    The Christian Experience of Forgiveness (previously mentioned)

S.M.    Merrill,    Aspects of Christian Experience, Chapters iv-vii

John H.    Newman,    Lectures on the Doctrine of Justification, London, 1874

John    Owen,    Works, Volume V, The Doctrine of Justification

G.W.    Richards,    Christian Ways of Salvation, New York, 1923

Albrecht    Ritschl,    The Christian Doctrine of Justification and Reconciliation, (Translated by Mackintosh and Macaulay)(Second Edition, 1902)

Richard    Watson,    Theological Institutes, II, Chapter xxiii

John    Wesley,    Sermons, V, VI, and XX. (Harrison, Wesleyan Standards, Volume I)

John    Witherspoon, Essay on Justification, 1756 (Considered one of the ablest Calvinistic expositions of the doctrine)


Outside of the standard works on theology, the literature of Chris­tian Sonship or Regeneration is not extensive.

H.    Begbie    Twice-Born Men, New York, London and Edinburgh, 1909 (previously cited)

Stephen    Charnock,    On Regeneration, (Complete works in Nichol’s Series of Standard Divines, 5 volumes, Edinburgh, 1864)

R.N.    Davies,    A Treatise on Justification, 1878 (Lecture x)

Jonathan    Edwards,    On Spiritual Light (mentioned in connection with Prevenient Grace)

Faber,    Primitive Doctrine of Regeneration

John    Fletcher,    Discourse on the New Birth

G.H.    Gerberding,    New Testament Conversions, Philadelphia, 1889

G.H.    Gerberding,    The Witness of the Spirit

John    Howe,    On Regeneration (Sermons xxxviii-xlix) Complete Works (2 volumes), London, 1724; New York, 1869

G.    Jackson,    The Fact of Conversion, London, 1908

Archbishop    Leighton,    On Regeneration

N.H.    Marshall,    Conversion or the New Birth, London, 1909

S.M.    Merrill,    Aspects of Christian Experience (Chapter x)

H.E.    Monroe    Twice-Born Men in America, 1914

Austin    Phelps,    The New Birth, Boston, 1867

Walton    Witness of the Spirit

John    Wesley,    Sermons, X, XI, XII, XVIII and XIX (Harrison, Wesleyan Standards, Volume I)

John    Witherspoon    Treatise on Regeneration, 1764 Calvin, Institutes, III, i-ii

Witsius    Covenants, III, vi

Young,    The Witness of the Spirit, 1882

ADDITIONAL READING  (Wesleyan Holiness books on Salvation, Evangelism and related topics; I am also preparing some lists offline)

The Wesleyan Heritage Library CD contains the following, among eBooks on many other subjects:

Amos Binney, Binney’s Theological Compend

Samuel Logan Brengle, The Soulwinner’s Secret

Charles Ewing Brown, The Meaning of Salvation

James Blaine Chapman, All Out For Souls

James Blaine Chapman, Nazarene Primer

List of PDF books from various theological viewpoints

Read Full Post »

(revised 12/15/13)

I love aspects of both the Wesleyan Holiness movement and the Independent Fundamentalist Baptist movement. So I was intrigued to find a connection between the Holiness-oriented Keswick movement and dispensationalists such as C.I. Scofield. Below I have reposted an article by Paul Gibbs, describing this connection.

But first a few comments. Douglas Banister mentions Scofield in The Word and Power Church: What Happens When a Church Seeks All God Has to Offer.  This book is too New Evangelical for me, but Banister does provide this insightful statement:

… C.I. Scofield wove Keswick teachings into his famous Scofield Reference Bible and later into the curriculum of the Bible school that later became Dallas Theological Seminary [a Baptist school]

And Andy Naselli here mentions one of the successors of the early Keswick Movement as:

“Dallas Theological Seminary: bastion of the Chaferian View of Sanctification (Scofield, Chafer, Walvoord, Ryrie)” [with a mild, modified form of Keswick theology]

I hope to research Independent Fundamentalist Baptists further, to see how their theology “got from there to here.” Specifically, although C.I. Scofield favored the Holiness-oriented Keswick movement, the devout users of Scofield’s Reference Bible seem to adamantly oppose a “second blessing,” the filling of the Holy Spirit at a point other than immediately upon conversion. (For more on the Keswick movement as related to Baptist theology, see the “For Further Reading” section at the bottom of this blog.)

Note – I do not approve of the current theology of the Keswick movement. Like many other evangelical movements, the Keswick movement became New Evangelical, and most recently, has compromised with postmodernism (Emerging/Emergent/Emergence teachings). See for example this link from the Keswick website. Tragic. (See more about the Keswick compromises in the Addendum at the end of this blog.)

Having said that, I would say the Keswick movement up until 1948 (the founding of the National Association of Evangelicals) was biblically sound.

I have reposted Paul Gibbs’ entire article here, rearranging the footnotes (placing them all at the bottom). Also, I have emphasized certain points by bolding, and inserted comments in [brackets]. I have also corrected the punctuation in a few spots. Click here for the entire original text of the article.

Mr. Paul Gibbs, Calvary Baptist Theological Seminary, Lansdale, PA


The National Leadership Conference this year [2008] deals with the topic of sanctification. As part of the conference’s coverage, various theological models of sanctification are being stated and compared. The Keswick view of sanctification refers to the view promoted by speakers and organizers of a nondenominational, summer Bible conference on the shores of Lake Derwentwater, in England’s Lake District. This summer conference, continuing to this day, impacted our fundamentalist forebears and continues to have a latent influence on our language and practical theology.

Days at the Keswick Convention start with quiet times on the lakeshore and move on to group worship and Bible teaching, followed with an afternoon of relaxation and time for spiritual reflection, and closed in an evening of powerful preaching ( 1). Men who wove the fabric of our history walked along these Keswick shores; a short list of their names looks like a shelf in my grandfather’s library: Hudson Taylor, H. C. G. Moule, C. I. Scofield, Andrew Murray, G. Campbell Morgan, R. A. Torrey, Donald Gray Barnhouse, and Dwight L. Moody. They came to Keswick to drink in the spirit of surrender for which Keswick is so noted, a spirit which aims for surrendered hearts owned by Christ, which He will fill and bring His holiness to sinful flesh which is unable to do any good thing of itself. Along these shores, the term “surrender” takes deep root in the hearts of those who visit, and, since its beginning in 1875, Keswick shoots have sprung up all around the world (2). American Fundamentalism, since its beginnings after the Civil War, has shared in the deep roots of Keswick: Keswick theology, emphasizing the attainability of complete sanctification through the surrender of the heart to Jesus Christ, was part of the climate of early Fundamentalism.

This workshop attempts to clarify the theology, history, and influence of Keswick theology on early fundamentalism. As such, three subjects will be surveyed: 1) the distinctives of Keswick theology, 2) the history of Keswick, and 3) trans-Atlantic conduits of Keswick influence.

Distinctives of Keswick theology

The hallmark of Keswick theology is its doctrine of sanctification. While it builds upon the Reformed tradition and is in essential agreement with that view, Keswick proponents view the Reformed doctrine as not going far enough to explain how a Christian can use his or her Reformed perspective to see sin defeated in their lives (3). Contrasted with the traditional Reformed doctrine of sanctification, Keswick theology teaches that Christ gives us complete victory over all conscious sin when we reach a point of total consecration, or “absolute surrender.” This may be seen by clarifying both views and noting the differences.

The traditional Reformed view of sanctification

Reformed doctrine teaches that sanctification is an act of God, completed at glorification, in which He gradually eliminates sin in the saint’s life by providing spiritual “muscles” in powerless human flesh by which the saint may work out a desire for holiness.

Sanctification will never result in complete victory until glorification

Sanctification, the “link between regeneration and glorification,”(4) is the beginning of the path to glorification, and glorification (including the absence of sin) will not be accomplished until we are resurrected in a new body. According to the Westminster Confession, XIII. ii, “This sanctification is throughout, in the whole man; yet imperfect in this life, there abideth still some remnants of corruption in every part.”(5) In Reformed doctrine, man is always aware of sin’s presence.

Sanctification is an ongoing struggle with sin in which man participates

Reformation doctrine teaches that the Holy Spirit provides spiritual “muscles” which the saint may use to perform godly works (6): “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling,” Paul says, with the understanding that “it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure” (Phil. 2:12-13). Strong describes sanctification as being an “intelligent” rooting about in one’s life to discover and destroy sin (7), and which involves man’s God-given diligence in utilizing, with God-given resolve, all God-given tools at his disposal to conquer sinful thoughts and deeds (8).

The Keswick doctrine of sanctification

In contrast to the traditional Reformed view of sanctification, Keswick theology accepts the foundational teaching of Reformed doctrine but says that sanctification can and should results [sic] in a state of absolute victory over all of the sins of which a saint is consciously aware, and that this state is brought about without the conscious effort of the saint through the work of Jesus Christ, Who works only as the saint maintains a state of total consecration.

Sanctification, absolute victory over all known sin, is available today

According to an authoritative speaker on Keswick theology, Stephen Barabas (9), Christ’s work in the believer’s life is already complete in the cross, and may bring absolute victory over all known sin in a believer’s life (10); that absolute victory is accessed by surrendering one’s life in faith that Christ will perform the work of complete victory over known sin (11).  It is not classical Wesleyan sanctification (the perfect manifestation of God’s love, though lived out in the weaknesses of our fallen intellects and fallen society), nor is [it] American holiness-movement perfectionism (the eradication of all sin), but rather victory over all known sin (12). [I like this clarification of the three movements’ definitions of sanctification.]

Sanctification is not a struggle

Keswick, Barabas says, teaches that freedom from all known sin “is not attained by struggle and painful effort, by earnest resolutions and self-denial, but through the cross. It is stepped into by simple faith.” (13) The first great Keswick voice, South African Andrew Murray, posed human effort and resolve as the enemy of virtue: “The greatest hindrance to trust is self-effort. So long as you have got your own wisdom and thoughts and strength, you cannot fully trust God.”(14)  Waltke characterizes this model of sanctification as “teaching that from the inner passivity of looking to Christ to do everything will issue a perfection of performance.”( 15) This teaching is in opposition to Reformed doctrine. As such, Keswick literature frequetly [sic] uses terminology such as “Let go and let God,” “victorious Christian living”, and “absolute surrender”.

The history of Keswick

Keswick theology is, essentially, 1) American Oberlin perfectionism (i.e., Charles Finney) imported to England by popular American speakers, 2) introduced to the upper classes, where its Wesleyan perfectionist edge was removed,  3) institutionalized by means of its central theme at the Keswick Conference, 4) and imported back to the United States in its new form by early fundamentalists.

Born in Philadelphia

The Americans who took the kernel form of “Keswick teaching” to England were Mr. and Mrs. William E. Boardman, and, most importantly, Mrs. and Mr. Robert Pearsall Smith (Mrs. Smith’s ministry was even more influential than her husband’s). [Warning: Mrs. Smith – Hannah Whitall Smith –  was into “Christian Universalism” for a time before joining the Keswick movement. See my quote from Bob Every, in the “Further Reading” section at the bottom of this blog.] Living in Philadelphia, William Boardman wrote a Wesleyan/holiness book titled The Higher Christian Life in 1858, and the book was an immediate and enduring success in England for up to 50 years later. The book’s success in England was due in part to the fact that a strong alliance between pietistic Evangelicals existed in England at that time, and there was and a broad and renewed interest in personal spiritual life (16). Both the Smiths and the Boardmans moved to England in the early 1870s for health reasons (17), where they associated under D.L. Moody to hold evangelistic meetings. During the evangelistic campaigns, they held, along with Asa Mahan, former president of Oberlin College (18), morning breakfast meetings for businessmen and clergy at which they promoted their particular doctrine of Wesleyan perfectionism. As their books were well received, so were their lectures, and their influence began to grow.

The Broadlands, Oxford, Brighton and the birth of the Keswick Convention

The breakfasts which the Smiths and Boardmans led were held during the morning, at a time which was inconvenient for the person of average means, who was unable to take time from work to attend the meetings (19). Thus, the Americans were received into upper-class, influential intellectual circles almost immediately (20). In 1874, at the Broadlands estate in England, an invitation-only meeting was held of about 100 influential English evangelicals; the Smiths and Boardmans were among those present, and they presented their views at these meetings. Following this, a larger conference was held at Oxford, with one thousand attendees (21) at which Rev. T. D. Harford-Battersby, Vicar of St. John’s, Keswick, was impressed by what he perceived to be the biblicity of this Boardman-Smith “Higher Life” teaching. Nine months later, a larger Higher Life meeting of 8,000 individuals 22 was held in Brighton, and Harford-Battersby and a new associate of his, a Quaker by the name of Robert Wilson (23), became convinced of the necessity to begin holding such meetings in Keswick. The Oxford Convention was held during the summer vacation season, and so, in the style of the Oxford conference, the first Keswick conference was also hosted in the August following Brighton. The leadership was the same leadership of the previous conventions, with the exception of Robert Pearsall Smith (who retired to seclusion that year (24)) and the addition of W. H. Webb-Peploe (who would become the principle leader of the convention for some fifty years following). Though the attendance only numbered about three hundred (25), those who attended were encouraged, and the decision was made to continue holding them yearly.

As has been just mentioned, Robert Pearsall Smith retired during the year of the first Keswick Conference, before it convened. His retirement brought a vital turn of events in Keswick history and marked a shift in the mood and content of the teaching of those who took his place in Keswick. Since becoming a member of Keswick meant being associated with a particular brand of questionable American perfectionism, many leaders of the evangelical church had started to shun their English brethren of Higher Life persuasion (26). With the American leadership now dropping from the movement, the university-trained British founders were free to take what the Americans had brought and refine it in such as way as to give it a greater deal of theological refinement and credibility among their suspic ious brethren. Thus, the gap left by the disappearing American leadership brought a new influx of well-educated English clergy who were pressured to build a theology which was more refined and free of perfectionist trappings. Marsden explains that, by smoothing off the rough edges of Wesleyan perfectionism, replacing terms such as “eradication” with “counteraction,” and emphasizing “fillings” of the Spirit instead of “baptisms” of the Spirit, “Keswick teachers could offer a doctrine that in practice had many of the same implications as the more Wesleyan Holiness teachings, but in theory avoided the claim . . . of ever being totally without sin.” (27)


A key American associate with Keswick since its inception was D. L. Moody. Moody, having much in common with Keswick theology, both in its teachings on sanctification (he himself had a Keswick experience of deepened surrender in 1871) and eschatology (Keswick leaders were largely premillennialists (28), began to invite Keswick speakers to come and speak at his new Northfield conference (29), which was a popular conference among Fundamentalists (30).  Further, Princeton hosted three years of Keswick meetings which helped secure a home for Keswick in America: after three years, the American Keswick movement settled into its permanent home at Keswick Grove, New Jersey (31). Thus, Keswick theology had come home— and, going through years of refinement in England, had been made more appealing for conservative, fundamentalist tastes (32).

Trans-Atlantic conduits of Keswick-fundamentalist influence

Fundamentalism grew with the Keswick movement. The two movements shared many leaders who crossed each other’s paths frequently, with members from group speaking in the other group’s meetings. A short survey of fundamentalist connections to this movement follows.

The Keswick influence on American Fundamentalism must begin with Moody, in Northfield. Northfield was an important fundamentalist stomping grounds (33), and noted Fundamentalist and Keswick voice A. T. Pierson taught there (34). Keswick conference director Webb-Peploe spoke at Northfield in 1895, fundamentalist and Keswick teacher A. J. Gordon taught there, and F. B. Meyer spoke there at the same time that C. I. Scofield was there (35), Through Northfield, fundamentalist and Keswick leaders rubbed shoulders and formed friendships that led to the cross-training of their conference speakers.

Writers and speakers such as Baptist fundamentalist A. J. Gordon, influential in Fundamentalism with his paper, Watchword (documenting early Fundamentalism from 1878-1895) (36) and Boston teacher A. T. Pierson, with his widely-read Missionary Review of the World (37), promulgated Keswick thought in the American fundamentalist camp. These two papers, along with James H. Brooks’ paper, The Truth, were keystone fundamentalist papers, and brought Keswick thought and language into the studies and homes of early fundamenalists [sic] across America.

We see the Keswick influence in The Fundamentals itself, which contains many entries by Keswick thinkers and features as primary editor R. A. Torrey himself, who was very involved at Keswick (speaking at Keswick in 1895, he even briefly referenced his Northfield experience (38)). A short perusal of the table of contents reveals at least fourteen entries by Keswick crossovers: five by A. T. Pierson, three by R. A. Torrey, one by H. C. G. Moule (the theologian of the Keswick movement), one by C. H. Trumbell, two by Henry Frost (one of which was titled, “Consecration”), one by G. Campbell Morgan, and, finally— and most notably—one by Keswick chairman H. W. Webb-Peploe himself, titled, “A Personal Testimony” (39).


On my bookshelf sit twelve volumes written by Keswick writer Andrew Murray which I purchased and read, one-by-one, when I was in college. Dog-eared and underlined, they were my tutors in spiritual growth. Somewhere along the line, whether through Murray’s books, teachers, or through my friends, I picked up the idea that for an individual to labor in the conquest of sin is prideful, spiritual arrogance, for, in doing so, I was told, one trusts in the arm of flesh for spiritual strength. For several years, I tried each day in times of quiet meditation to clear my heart of all determination, and, as Murray’s Humility would have it, to rest in absolute helplessness and weakness at God’s feet, and rise, expecting myself to walk out in victory; I trusted God—certainly, I would not sin. Unfortunately, my own experience proved this method to be not unsuccessful in its aim of conquering sin’s influence in my life. Eventually, I moved away from the Keswick method, and Keswick teaching—though I did not yet know it by that name—slowly made its way into boxes in my attic.

I have never been to England. I have received all of my spiritual training in fundamentalist circles. Until the last several years, I wasn’t even familiar with the term “Keswick”. Yet still, I had been influenced by it. Even if an American fundamentalist never reads a single Keswick author, he may pick up the language and teaching from a pastor, a friend, or Bible college professors, any of which may be in the stream of Keswick thought.

Understanding our roots is critical to understanding the way we grow as believers. We must recognize which roots in Fundamentalism produce which results. For those who may be discouraged, as I was, by the shortcomings of a theology closely resembling the Keswick model, they might find encouragement through understanding their theological roots. By finding the words to describe their theological struggle, and by placing a name on the set of concepts which they employ to cope with sin in their lives (call it the “Keswick” approach, for example), they may objectively study the theological models and decide whether their models are the most scriptural approaches. It is important, then, for all of us, as we are affected by so vexing an issue as our sanctification, to clearly and explicitly state our approach to sanctification and know for sure that the theology beneath our feet—the ground on which we wage the war against sin in our lives—is the solid ground of God [sic] Word.


(1) Keswick Convention, “A Typical Weekday at Keswick”; available: http://www.keswickconv.com/whatis.html; Internet; accessed 4 February 2003.

(2) According to the official Keswick website, its theology remains unchanged. “The world has changed dramatically since [1875], yet the Biblical truths and values that inspired that first meeting in Keswick have not.” Keswick Convention, “What is Keswick?”; available: http://www.keswickconv.com/whatiskeswick.htm ; Internet; accessed 16 April 2001.
[Note – as I mentioned at the beginning of my blog, the Keswick theology has changed. Its website uses postmodern (Emerging/Emergent/Emergence terminology, such as “missional” and “relational.”]

(3) Cf., J. Robertson McQuilkin, “Response to Hoekema,” ch. in Five Views on Sanctification, ed. Stanley N. Gundry (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1987), 98-99.

(4) J. I. Packer, “Keswick and the Reformed Doctrine of Sanctification,” Evangelical Quarterly 27 (July 1955), 155.

(5) William S. Barker, ed., The Westminster Standards: An Original Fascimile (Audubon, NJ: Old Paths, 1997), 25.

(6) Louis Berkhof, Systematic Theology (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1976), 533-534; Augustus H. Strong, Systematic Theology (Valley Forge, Pa.: Judson, 1993), 871.

(7) Strong, Systematic Theology, 871.

(8) Berkhof, Systematic Theology, 534.

(9) Barabas’ systematic expression of Keswick theology and history (Steven Barabas, So Great Salvation: The History and Message of the Keswick Convention (Westwood, N.J.: n.d.)) has been deemed authoritative by proponents and opponents of Keswick teaching alike. An opponent of the movement, J. I. Packer calls Barabas’s work “a statement of the distinctive and characteristic ‘Keswick teaching’ which we may safely treat as definitive” (Packer, “Keswick,” 153); Keswick Convention Council chairman Fred Mitchell agrees in Barabas’ preface, (Barabas, So Great Salvation, x).

(10) Barabas, So Great Salvation, 84.

(11) Ibid., 90; Packer, “Keswick,” 161.

(12) H. W. Webb-Peploe, Sunday School Times, 25 June 1 898; quoted in Strong, Systematic Theology, 877; Ernest R. Sandeen, The Roots of Fundamentalism: British and American Millenarianism (Chicago: U. of Chicago, 1970), 179.

(13) Barabas, So Great Salvation, 90.

(14) Andrew Murray, Absolute Surrender (Springdale, Pa.: Whitaker, 1982), 114. Cf. Andrew Murray, Obtain the Power of God (Springdale, Pa.: Whitaker, 1984), 18-19; Andrew Murray, Humility (Springdale, Pa.: Whitaker, 1982), 66.
[Be discerning in purchasing these reprint editions; often they quote Bible versions other than the KJV. I recommend the free, original online versions of Murray’s books; to read them, click here.]

(15) Bruce Waltke, “Evangelical Spirituality: A Biblical Scholar’s Perspective,” JETS 31/1 (March 1988), 22. [I think JETS stands for Journal of Evangelical Theological Society.]

(16) David Bundy, “Keswick and the Experience of Evangelical Piety,” chap. in Modern Christian Revivals, eds. Edith L. Blumhofer and Randall Balmer (Chicago: U. of Illinois, 1993), 134. As Hudson Taylor’s son said, the time around the arrival of Boardman’s book into England was characterized by “a remarkable movement for the deepening of spiritual life.” (Dr. and Mrs. Howard Taylor, Hudson Taylor and the China Inland Mission: The Growth of a Work of God (London: The Religious Tract Society, 1934), 264.)

(17) Barabas, So Great Salvation, 19.

(18) Johnson, The Highest Life, 15. Oberlin was the college where Finney was professor of theology and from which Finney wrote on perfectionism. Mahan also participated in the early Keswick meetings, according to Marsden (George M. Marsden, Fundamentalism and American Culture: The Shaping of Twentieth-Century Evangelicalism: 1870-1925 (Oxford: Oxford, 1980), 77). Though Mahan’s influence was not very large, his invitation, interest, and participation in these meetings highlights the harmony of doctrine in both Oberlin theology and the theology of the Boardmans, Smiths, and—later— Keswick.

(19) Ian S. Rennie, review of Keswick: A Bibliographic Introduction to the Higher Life Movements, by D.D. Bundy, JETS 19:4 (Fall 1976): 342.

(20) Rennie States, “The social class of its members has an effect on any movement, and English Keswick and Anglican evangelicalism will never be understood without an awareness of their upper-class orientation” (ibid.)

(21) Barabas, So Great Salvation, 23.

(22) Ibid.

(23) Ibid., 25.

(24) Though the precise circumstances surrounding his retirement from public life are to this day uncertain (Sandeen, Roots, 179), an official report on Smith’s retirement was made by some close associate of Smith several months after the first Keswick meeting. According to their report, Smith had “inculcated doctrines which were most unscriptural and dangerous” (Barabas, So Great Salvation, 27) and had also made some actions which were felt to be indiscreet (ibid). Smith and Boardman, it has been proposed, were incompatible with this goal, and thus the “dangerous” character of his teachings were exaggerated as a means to affect his disposal (ibid.; Bundy, “Keswick,” 127): Bundy states, “Smith’s perfectionism, with the attendant expectations of an American-style religious experience, had been troublesome even to some of Smith’s supporters. It would appear that an indiscretion on Smith’s part gave them a basis for eradicating him” (ibid.).

(25) Ibid., 26.

(26) Ibid., 27. According to Marsden, “The most influential British founders of the movement seem to have been quite careful to avoid the charge of teaching perfectionism, an accusation that had some plausibility considering the American company they were keeping” (Marsden, Fundamentalism, 77).

(27) Marsden, Fundamentalism, 78.

(28) Sandeen, Roots, 179.

(29) Ibid., 176; Marsden, Fundamentalism, 78.

(30) David Beale, In Pursuit of Purity: American Fundamentalism Since 1950 (Greenville: BJU, 1986), 60.

(31) Sandeen, Roots, 180.

(32) It never did sit well with some American theologians, such as B. B. Warfield, who wrote a scathing denunciation of the movement (B. B. Warfield, Perfectionism (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1981)).

(33) Beale, In Pursuit of Purity, 60; Sandeen, Roots, 179.

(34) A. T. Pierson’s The Keswick Movement in Precept and Practice (New York: Funk & Wagnalls, 1900) was an early enunciation of Keswick theology.

(35) Sandeen, Roots, 180; Marsden, Fundamentalism, 249

(36) Beale, Pursuit of Purity, 24, 139.

(37) Ibid., 61.

(38) R. A. Torrey, “How to Receive the Holy Ghost,” chap. in Keswick’s Triumphant Voice, ed. Herbert F. Stevenson (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1963), 355.

(39) R. A. Torrey, A. C. Dixon, et al. The Fundamentals (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1972). [The free, original versions of these articles are available online at various websites.]


Barabas, Steven. So Great Salvation: The History and Message of the Keswick Convention. Westwood, N.J.: n.d.

Barker, William S., ed. The Westminster Standards: An Original Fascimile. Audobon, NJ: Old Paths, 1997.

Beale, David. In Pursuit of Purity: American Fundamentalism Since 1950. Greenville: BJU, 1986.

Berkhof, Louis. Systematic Theology, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1976

Bundy, David. “Keswick and the Experience of Evangelical Piety.” In Modern Christian Revivals, eds. Edith L. Blumhofer and Randall Balmer, 118-144. Chicago: U. of Illinois, 1993.

Keswick Convention. “A Typical Weekday at Keswick.” Available: http://www.keswickconv.com/whatis.htm ; Internet; accessed 4 February, 2003.
__________. “What is Keswick?” Available: http://www.keswickconv.com/whatiskeswick.htm ; Internet; accessed 16 April 2001.

Marsden, George M. Fundamentalism and American Culture: The Shaping of Twentieth-Century Evangelicalism: 1870-1925. Oxford: Oxford, 1980.

McQuilkin, J. Robertson. “Response to Hoekema.” In Five Views on Sanctification, ed. Stanley N. Gundry, 98-99. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1987.

Murray, Andrew. Absolute Surrender. Springdale, Pa.: Whitaker, 1982.
__________. Humility. Springdale, Pa.: Whitaker, 1982.
__________. Obtain the Power of God. Springdale, Pa.: Whitaker, 1984.

Packer, J. I. “Keswick and the Reformed Doctrine of Sanctification,” Evangelical Quarterly 27 (July 1955): 153-167.

Pierson, A. T. The Keswick Movement in Precept and Practice. New York: Funk & Wagna lls, 1900.

Rennie, Ian S. Review of Keswick: A Bibliographic Introduction to the Higher Life Movements, by D. D. Bundy. In JETS 19:4 (Fall 1976): 340-342.

Sandeen, Ernest R. The Roots of Fundamentalism: British and American Millenarianism. Chicago: U. of Chicago, 1970.

Strong, Augustus H. Systematic Theology. Valley Forge, Pa.: Judson, 1993.

Taylor, Dr. and Mrs. Howard. Hudson Taylor and the China Inland Mission: The Growth of a Work of God. London: The Religious Tract Society, 1934.

Torrey, R. A. “How to Receive the Holy Ghost.” In Keswick’s Triumphant Voice, ed. Herbert F. Stevenson, 347-363. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1963.
__________, A. C. Dixon, et al., eds. The Fundamentals. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1972.

Waltke, Bruce. “Evangelical Spirituality: A Biblical Scholar’s Perspective,” JETS 31:1 (March 1988): 9-24.

Warfield, B. B. Perfectionism. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1981.

Webb-Peploe, H. W. Sunday School Times (25 June 1898); quoted in Strong, Systematic Theology, 877, Valley Forge, Pa.: Judson, 1993.

Copyright © 2008 [www.seeking4truth.com]. All rights reserved .Revised: 05/17/2009

ADDENDUM: What does the Keswick movement stand for today?

To repeat my comments from the beginning of this blog:

I do not approve of the current theology of the Keswick movement. Like many other evangelical movements, the Keswick movement has become New Evangelical, then further compromised with modernists and postmodernists (Emerging/Emergent/Emergent). See for example this link from the Keswick website. Tragic.

Having said that, I would say the Keswick movement up until 1948 (the founding of the National Association of Evangelicals) was biblically sound.

My observations are verified by an excerpt from this Baptist article:

It seems that the movement did have its problems. Perhaps separation was a key issue. For all the emphasis on separating from the world, they did not have much to say about real apostasies. Few if any of them ever went into Modernism; but they did not seem to warn people very much against it, or against the ecumenical movement. [This is not exactly the case, at least before 1920 or so; the article above names various Keswick men who wrote articles in The Fundamentals, against modernism. Quote: “A short perusal of the table of contents reveals at least fourteen entries by Keswick crossovers…”.] So many denominations were represented that they did not say much, if anything, against sacramental grace. When Billy Graham linked with the New York Modernists in his 1957 meetings, the Deeper Life men had little or nothing to say against it. In 1961, as Graham was making common cause with the Modernists, with the WCC, and even with Rome, Alan Redpath, then at Moody Church in Chicago, seemed to be swept along in the current. He was widely quoted to have invited the Modernists, with their fine ethics, and the Fundamentalists, with their sound doctrine, to get together in winning souls to Christ.

Now the whole movement seems to have slid off into New Evangelicalism.

A second problem was the lack of interest in the literal interpretation of prophecy. That negligence probably reflects the amillennialism of so many preachers in the UK. I find little mention of the blessed hope in my reading of the literature.

A third problem was pietism, although I believe that there was a lot less of it early on than they were accused of. They loved the Word too much to bypass it just because someone prayed and got different leading. That view seemed to hold for about the first 80 years [approx. 1876-1956]. If anything, the pietism came up after 1956, when preachers were trying to justify Graham; but that coincided with the decline of the movement. The slide to New Evangelicalism at last justified the charge of pietism.

A fourth complaint was the temptation to pride…


Aaron Blumer, Let Go and Let God? An Interview with Author Andy Naselli

Russell J. Boone, “Keswick Sanctification” – Fundamentalist Baptists Scofield and Chafer are mentioned on pages 5 and 8 of Boone’s document.

Stephen Clark Brown, A Thematic Comparison of the Keswick, Chaferian, and Reformed Views of Sanctification (Western Conservative Baptist Seminary, 1985 , 306 pages). Click here for a blog critique of Dr. Brown, which provides more info about him. And click here for more comments, including statements that Dr. Brown likes The Shack – scary.

L.S. Chafer Biography – excerpt: [Chafer taught that a modified] mild Keswick holiness emphasis on two works of grace in the believer’s life (as well as the distinction between obedient and fleshly Christians as spiritual states) provided the ground for a right relationship to the Holy Spirit, the source of power in ministry.

Lewis Sperry Chafer, He That Is Spiritual: A Classic Study of the Biblical Doctrine of Spirituality (Google.com Books preview)Note this quote from John D. Hannah, An Uncommon Union: Dallas Theological Seminary and American Evangelicalism, p. 150: Reflective of the Bible conference emphasis on the spiritual life, the influence of Keswick theology permeates the classroom [back in the day](or at least chapels, missions conferences and some special lectureships) as seen in Chafer’s He That is Spiritual.

Bob Evely, Universalism: Church History – Note – this is a heretical website, but the following quote by Mr. Evely is insightful:

HANNAH WHITALL SMITH:  1832 – 1911.  Best known for her classic “The Christian’s Secret of a Happy Life” (1883), Hannah Whitall Smith also wrote a lesser known spiritual autobiography entitled “The Unselfishness of God and How I Discovered It.” Originally published in 1903 by the Fleming H. Revell Company, this book has been republished more recently by Littlebrook Publishing in Princeton NJ. But in republishing the work, this more recent version has omitted eight chapters, including references made to Smith’s belief in universal reconciliation.

John D. HannahAn Uncommon Union: Dallas Theological Seminary and American Evangelicalism – online Google Books preview, includes 9 references to the word “Keswick” in the writings of Chafer and Walvoord

Andrew David Naselli, KESWICK THEOLOGY: A SURVEY AND ANALYSIS OF THE DOCTRINE OF SANCTIFICATION IN THE EARLY KESWICK MOVEMENT – excerpt: [a successor to Keswick theology]  – Dallas Theological Seminary: Bastion of the Chaferian View of Sanctification (Scofield, Chafer, Walvoord, Ryrie)

Andy Naselli, Andy Naselli on Why “Let Go and Let God” Is a Bad Idea – This Calvinistic blog, although biased against the Keswick movement, provides many additional insights regarding the history and theology of the Keswick movement.

Roger E. Olson, “Keswick Movement”, The Westminster Handbook to Evangelical Theology, pp. 82-84 (article viewable online here).



C.I. Scofield, In Many Pulpits with Dr. C. I. Scofield

C.I. Scofield, Plain Papers on the Doctrine of the Holy Spirit

Scofield Reference Notes (1917 edition) online, with KJV online

Mark A. Snoeberger, Second-Blessing Models of Sanctification and Early Dallas Dispensationalism

Mike Sullivan, Five Views on Sanctification: An In-Depth Analysis – this is analysis of the book Five Views on Sanctification. It covers the Wesleyan view, the Keswick view, the Augustinian-Dispensational view [aka the Chaferian view], etc.


09/18/2012 –  I found this additional info here:

Thirdly, Moody influenced many dispensationalists (and, more broadly, fundamentalists) by introducing them to the Keswick holiness teaching. When Moody brought Fredrick B. Meyer to Northfield (probably in 1891), a strenuous protest was raised. Many of the Niagara conference men, who were speakers at Northfield, had taken great pains to oppose the Oberlin perfectionism of Charles Finney and Asa Mahan, and Meyer had to distinguish his teaching from it. The Keswick movement, begun through meetings in Keswick, England in 1873, under the domination of H. W. Webb Peploe, clearly departed from Methodist perfectionism. While rejecting the Wesleyan doctrine of the eradication of the sinful nature, the Keswick teachers also rejected the traditional view that one’s sinful nature was merely suppressed by Christ’s righteousness. This, they felt, led to constant conflict with sin and even tolerance of it as normal. In its place, the Keswick teachers posited a two-stage concept of the Christian life: the ‘carnal Christian’ and the ‘spiritual Christian.’ Moving from one to the other required an act of faith, or ‘consecration.’ It was described as ‘absolute surrender’ or as ‘yielding’ and was always conceived of as a distinct crisis experience which brought in ‘the victorious life.’ Moody claimed to have undergone an intense second experience in 1871 and urged Torrey to ‘preach on the baptism with the Holy Ghost,’ and it appears Torrey took his advice. Other dispensationalists continued to promote the Keswick doctrines. In 1913 Charles Trumbull began an ‘American Keswick’ conference; in his biography of C. I. Scofield, Trumbull and the famous dispensationalist are pictured together as ‘Paul and Timothy,’ indicating the close relationship between the two movements. More importantly, Scofield more or less canonized these Keswick doctrines in his Reference Bible. (44) To dispensationalists, who believe that the Church Age was the unique age of the Spirit, this teaching has a special attraction. Moreover, while premillennialism abandons an optimistic estimate of the conquering power of the Holy Spirit throughout society, this Keswick doctrine promises personal ‘victory’ in the Holy Spirit.

(44) See, for example, Scofield’s notes on I Cor. 2:14 and Romans 7:9, 14, 15 The Scofield Reference Bible, (New York: Oxford University Press, 1909), pp. 1213, 1214, 1199, 1200.


Russell J. Boone, “Keswick Sanctification” – mentions D.L. Moody, C.I. Scofield, etc.


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There are exciting movements going on today, called “Confessing Movements.” These consist mainly of individuals in mainline denominations, working to bring biblical beliefs back to their wayward denominations.

Following is an “Arminian Today” blog about the Confessing Movement in the United Methodist Church (UMC). Personally, I grew up in the Evangelical Friends Church International (EFCI) denomination, which shares a common Wesleyan Holiness heritage with the UMC. (Granted, we have to go back rather far to locate that common, biblically sound heritage.)

Back to the  “Arminian Today”  blog – I am copying the blog verbatim. Click here for the original source of this blog (update 03/10/12 – this link no longer works). I have emphasized certain points by bolding or [bracketing].

The Confessing Movement in the United Methodist Church
[blogsite author – anonymous]

From time to time I get to pray with a few Methodist pastors. Despite being trained in liberal institutions, these brothers remain somewhat conservative. I say somewhat only in that we haven’t discussed every doctrinal issue and I know that their passion for holiness is not the same as my own from our conversations. But they are still conservative Methodist pastors within the United Methodist Church and for that I am thankful to God. They pray with a desire to see Jesus exalted in His Church and with a passion to see the fire of God that once burned bright in the Methodist church to fall again on the UMC.

Thankfully there is a movement within the UMC to call Methodists back to the fire and passion of John Wesley. Wesley, contrary to popular opinion, didn’t start the Methodist church. He never left the Church of England and his call was reformation and revival among Anglicans of Wesley’s day. But from Wesley and Whitefield came forth the Methodist church. From the time shortly after the death of John Wesley until the early 20th century, the Methodist church dominated. In the United States alone the Methodist church planted more churches and saw more souls come to faith in Christ than any other movements. The fires of revival that came from John Wesley did not die until the Methodist colleges and universities begin to embrace the spirit of the age and adopted to modernity. Various Methodist colleges and seminaries, one by one, begin to subscribe to the unorthodox views coming out of Europe in the late 19th century that denied inerrancy and the infallibility of the Bible, embraced evolution, and embraced a faulty understanding of Jesus Christ, His cross, His resurrection, and His gospel. This led to the demise of the Methodist church and since the early part of the 20th century, the Methodist church has been irrelevant in terms of making an eternal impact for God’s true kingdom.

But there is hope. God is raising up men and women in the Methodist church that are being faithful to Jesus and His kingdom. They are embracing the Bible as the inerrant Word of God, that Jesus Christ is fully God and He alone is the way of salvation, that God desires holiness and that He wants all the nations to hear His gospel (Mark 16:15). These Methodists are beginning to show signs of the old fashioned holiness fire that burned in the chests of John Wesley, George Whitefield, John Fletcher, Richard Watson, Francis Asbury, Richard Allen, E.M. Bounds, Peter Cartwright, and Samuel Chadwick. I would also place Leonard Ravenhill in with these men of God along with other “Methodists” such as William and Catherine Booth. The fire of God that sparked a passion for souls, for prayer, for worldwide revival is starting to brew again in the hearts of many Methodists and I praise God for that. They are tired of church as usual and they want to see the Lord glorified in His Church again.

I urge you to pray for the Confessing Methodist movement. I believe that this faithful remnant has keep the UMC from going the way of the PCUSA or the Lutherans. The Holy Spirit is using many from the confessing movement to turn hearts back to the Lord Jesus and once again the gospel of the new birth that comes through faith in Jesus Christ is being preached (John 3:3-7; 1 Peter 1:18-19). 2 Corinthians 5:17 is once again being taught by many confessing Methodists. Luke 24:47-49 is once again being lived out among confessing Methodists. The fire of holiness from passages such as Acts 15:9 is being prayed for and applied by confessing Methodists. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 is once again being taken seriously as is 2 Timothy 3:16-17. I praise God for this and so should you too my friends.

For more on the confessing movement, see their website here.

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