Old Paths

Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. Jeremiah 6:16

The secret of the LORD is with them that fear him; and he will show them his covenant. Psalm 25:14


Vol. 16, No. 11 Straight and Narrow November 2007


Leaves of Autumn

Unvarnished truth must be spoken, in leaflets and pamphlets, and these
must be scattered like the leaves of autumn. --Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9, p. 231

Autumn Leaves

 

The Chosen Generation

And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh. And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth (Genesis 9:15, 16).

Throughout the Bible, God instructs us on several occasions to remember. We are not to forget his workings and the way he has led his people.

And Moses said unto the people, Remember this day, in which ye came out from Egypt, out of the house of bondage; for by strength of hand the LORD brought you out from this place (Exodus 13:3).

God said to remember this experience. In the Ten Commandments we are told to remember the Sabbath day and to keep it holy. In Deuteronomy, we read:

And thou shalt remember all the way which the LORD thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness (Deuteronomy 8:2).

God said to remember all the things that he has done for us and not to forget any of the ways he has lead us. We also read in Deuteronomy 32: “Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations: ask thy father, and he will shew thee; thy elders, and they will tell thee (v. 7).” How can we tell the younger generations who want to know the past if we ourselves have forgotten it? Beloved, you cannot remember that which you have never known, and the sad state of Adventism and even in Christianity as a whole, is that we have forgotten and do not know God’s leading and dealings with his people in the past generations.

In the little book of Jude we read: “But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ (v. 17).” We need to remember and know the teachings of Christ and the teachings of God’s Word. As Seventh-day Adventist people, we have been given this admonition through Ellen White:

In reviewing our past history, having traveled over every step of advance to our present standing, I can say, Praise God! As I see what the Lord has wrought, I am filled with astonishment, and with confidence in Christ as leader. We have nothing to fear for the future, except as we shall forget the way the Lord has led us, and His teaching in our past history (Life Sketches, p. 196).

We have nothing to fear for the future unless we forget! We are to remember the way the Lord has led us and his teaching in our past history. As Christians, we should know the stories of the Bible; we should understand the great things that God has done for his people. Not only should we understand the leading of God in sacred history but also his leading since the times of the New Testament. Let us begin in Genesis 6:

And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them. But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD (Genesis 6:7, 8).

Noah was a great man, and he found grace in the eyes of the Lord. He was a perfect and upright man in many respects. What would it have been like to have lived during the time of the flood and to have heard Noah preach with earnestness? How serious was Noah? He was so serious that he invested his entire livelihood into the building of the ark that no one ever believed would see water. He was firm enough in his belief to accept the ridicule of the whole world because, outside of his family, not one person set foot on that boat. What would it have been like to have been alive when Noah was living and knowing that a flood was really coming? Would we have stood with Noah and accepted the ridicule with him? Would we have also fearlessly and boldly proclaimed the truth? If so, then we could have ridden in the ark. Imagine that ride! Even in this huge ark, what would it have been like to ride through that terrible storm? I would have loved to have been there and lived during that time, but I am glad I did not.

The first two chapters of Genesis tell us the story of creation. What would it have been like to have been there and to have seen the handiwork of God first hand? To smell flowers without any taint of pollution about them or with any degeneration in our ability to smell? To see every animal tame and kind? What would that have been like? I would have loved to have been there and experienced it, but, beloved, I am glad I did not.

God said to remember the Exodus. What would it have been like to have been there and to have seen all the things that happened before the Exodus—the plagues of Egypt—and to see a distinction made between the Egyptians and the land of Goshen? What would it have been like to have been in the multitude that left on that great morning and in their journey come to a sea before them, mountains on the right and mountains on the left, and Pharaoh’s army speedily chasing them in a huge cloud of dust in the distance? What would it have been like to have seen Moses lift up his rod in obedience to God’s command and the waters part, standing, as it were, on the right and on the left and the wind sweeping through drying the ground? What would it have been like to actually walk through those walls of water and see them later collapse upon Pharaoh and his army? I would love to have been there, but I am glad I was not.

Exodus 20 is the record of the Ten Commandments being given with awful grandeur: “And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking: and when the people saw it, they removed, and stood afar off (Exodus 20:18).” The closest thing we can relate this to would be some kind of volcanic activity. There is a storm with lightening, thunder, and smoke. The mountain shakes and there is an earthquake. The people were afraid. “And they said unto Moses, Speak thou with us, and we will hear: but let not God speak with us, lest we die. And Moses said unto the people, Fear not: for God is come to prove you, and that his fear may be before your faces, that ye sin not. And the people stood afar off, and Moses drew near unto the thick darkness where God was (Exodus 20:19-21).” Who was Moses? He was a great man of God who today is in heaven. He was someone who walked unafraid through the plague of hail when summoned into Pharaoh’s court. In fact, if we turn to Exodus 9 we will read something fascinating:

And the LORD said unto Moses, Stretch forth thine hand toward heaven, that there may be hail in all the land of Egypt, upon man, and upon beast, and upon every herb of the field, throughout the land of Egypt. And Moses stretched forth his rod toward heaven: and the LORD sent thunder and hail, and the fire ran along upon the ground; and the LORD rained hail upon the land of Egypt. So there was hail, and fire mingled with the hail, very grievous, such as there was none like it in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation. And the hail smote throughout all the land of Egypt all that was in the field, both man and beast; and the hail smote every herb of the field, and brake every tree of the field. Only in the land of Goshen, where the children of Israel were, was there no hail. And Pharaoh sent, and called for Moses and Aaron, and said unto them, I have sinned this time: the LORD is righteous, and I and my people are wicked. Intreat the LORD (for it is enough) that there be no more mighty thunderings and hail; and I will let you go, and ye shall stay no longer. And Moses said unto him, As soon as I am gone out of the city, I will spread abroad my hands unto the LORD; and the thunder shall cease, neither shall there be any more hail; that thou mayest know how that the earth is the LORD’S (Exodus 9:22-29).

Moses did not say that he would wait for the hail to cease before leaving the palace, but he said he would walk to the end of the city through the hail and then he would spread his hands to God and it would stop. We see that God honors his own. This was the Moses that could approach God in the darkness. He had walked through the hail. The hail and the darkness meant nothing to him. Would you have loved to have seen that? I would, but I am glad I did not.

I think about when King Solomon’s temple was dedicated. The Bible says that twenty-two thousand oxen and one hundred twenty thousand sheep were sacrificed. I would like to have personally heard the prayer of Solomon. I would like to have seen the fire fall from heaven to consume the sacrifice and the glory of the Lord fill the house. I would love to have been there and lived during that time, but I am glad I did not.

One of my favorite characters of the Bible is Elijah. What would it have been like to have been with Elijah on Mount Carmel? Can you imagine yourself as one of the children of Israel who were called together to see the showdown between the prophets of Baal and the lone prophet of Jehovah? The Bible says God had seven thousand who had not bowed the knee to Baal, but on that day, not one of them spoke up. Not one of them supported Elijah and stood up for Jehovah. What would you have done if you had been there? Interestingly, the Septuagint translation in one place calls the prophets of Baal the prophets of shame. What would it have been like to have seen these prophets of shame as they called upon and pleaded with their god, Baal, for fire as Elijah mocked them and nothing came? What would it have been like to have seen fire come down from heaven in answer to Elijah’s prayer, so much so that the fire consumed not only the sacrifice and the altar, but also all the water that had been poured upon it. How wonderful that must have been to see the life-giving rain come in answer to Elijah’s prayer. Again, I would love to have been there, but I am glad I was not.

I think about other great Old Testament worthies like Esther, Daniel, and Nehemiah. What would it have been like to have lived in their times? To have lived, like Esther and Daniel, under the pressure of a death decree? To have seen a godly woman like Esther and a godly man like Daniel pray for the deliverance of God’s people and then to see God’s work? What would it have been like to have been with Nehemiah and to see those walls of Jerusalem rebuilt? That would have been a wonderful, faith-building experience. I would like to have been there and to have seen it all, but I am glad I didn’t.

I come down to the New Testament and think about the life of Jesus Christ. What would it have been like to have seen and experienced that one solitary life? To have seen the miracles of the loaves and the fishes? To have seen the blind be given sight, the lame walk and the lepers made clean? To have heard teachings such as man never heard before? To have heard the Sermon on the Mount, the kingdom of grace, and the parables of Jesus? What would it have been like to have been the woman caught in the very act of adultery and then to hear the words of blessing, “Neither do I condemn thee?” What would that have been like? What would it have been like to be, like the Apostle John, able to lay close, even upon the breast of Christ? To have watched him die, yes, but also to have seen the resurrected Christ, and then the ascension of Christ to heaven? What would that have been like? What would that experience be worth if it could be purchased? If you have enough money you can ride in a space shuttle or climb Mount Everest, but what kind of price, if people could actually go back in time, would a ticket cost to be present on resurrection morning or at Calvary or to hear Jesus deliver the Sermon on the Mount? Why, we would mortgage everything we have to be present. I would love to have been there and lived during that time, but, beloved, I am glad that I didn’t.

What would it have been like to have lived during the time of the apostles, to have received the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost, and to have done even greater works than Jesus, as he promised they would do in John 14:12? What would it have been like to have been with John when he was on trial, when he was condemned and thrown into a cauldron of boiling oil only to be unharmed by it, and then with him in exile on the island of Patmos, where, like Ezekiel, he saw visions of God? I would love to have been there and lived during that time, but I am glad I didn’t.

What would it have been like to have lived during the time of the Reformers? To have been at Wittenberg and see a lone monk nail his Ninety-five Theses upon the door? To have been at the Council of Worms and to hear this same monk say, “I cannot submit my faith either to the pope or to the councils, because it is clear as the day that they have frequently erred and contradicted each other. Unless therefore I am convinced by the testimony of Scripture or by the clearest reasoning, unless I am persuaded by means of the passages I have quoted, and unless they thus render my conscience bound by the word of God, I cannot and I will not retract, for it is unsafe for a Christian to speak against his conscience. Here I stand, I can do no other; may God help me (The Great Controversy, p. 160).” What would it have been like to have lived during the time when Johann Guttenberg produced moveable type and a printing press, Luther translated the New Testament, and  Tyndale translating and publishing the Bible into English? I would have loved to have been there and lived during that time, but I am glad I didn’t.

What would it have been like to have been present during the Great Awakening in America? To have lived through the Dark Day and through the night when the moon became as blood? What would it have been like to have experienced the falling of the stars in 1833, a meteor shower that made the Guinness Book of Records, a shower that no one has seen the likes of since or even before? What would it have been like to have experienced the disappointment of 1844 and then after that disappointment the joy in knowing that something new had transpired and you were learning firsthand something that no one had ever understood before? What would it have been like to have heard the testimony of Hiram Edson that day after he came through the cornfield? What would it have been like to have personally seen Ellen White in vision and to have met James White? What would it have been like to have heard him preach or to have heard the testimony of Captain Joseph Bates and to have seen the hand of God upon a people? I tell you, I would have loved to have been among those people, but I am glad I wasn’t.

Beloved, we have more memories ahead of us still. We are told to remember, and as we do we will see how to work into the program that God has ahead for us. Remember, there was a flood that destroyed the earth, but if we are faithful, according to Peter, we will see it destroyed by fire. “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness (2 Peter 3:10, 11).” The people in Noah’s ark had destruction all around them, but they were safe inside. The Bible tells us the New Jerusalem will come down from God out of heaven and when the earth is being purified by fire, the people inside will be protected by God. I am glad, by the grace of God, for the opportunity to be there.

God’s faithful people will see a new heaven and a new earth. They will hear the voice of God make all things new. Peter tells us: “Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness (2 Peter 3:12, 13).” I am glad that, by the grace of God, I will be there. Will you?

I think about the Exodus. God’s people during the end of time will see the seven last plagues, and just as God made a difference between the Egyptians and his people during the time of Moses, God will make a difference between his people and spiritual Egypt during the seven last plagues. According to Psalm 91:10, no plague will come nigh to God’s people. God’s people will see deliverance from Egyptian bondage and sin and live in the sight of a holy God without a mediator.

Those who are living upon the earth when the intercession of Christ shall cease in the sanctuary above are to stand in the sight of a holy God without a mediator. Their robes must be spotless, their characters must be purified from sin by the blood of sprinkling. Through the grace of God and their own diligent effort they must be conquerors in the battle with evil (The Great Controversy, p. 425).

God’s people will cross over the sea of sin into the Promised Land. They will experience the final atonement and I am glad I am living at this time. Do you remember the proclamation of God’s holy law at Mount Sinai? The mountain was on fire. There was smoke, thundering, and an earthquake. There was an awful grandeur to it all, but those living in the last days will have a message calling God’s people and all people back to that law as the standard of all living and we will experience something that Israel never experienced.

While these words of holy trust ascend to God, the clouds sweep back, and the starry heavens are seen, unspeakably glorious in contrast with the black and angry firmament on either side. The glory of the celestial city streams from the gates ajar. Then there appears against the sky a hand holding two tables of stone folded together. Says the prophet: “The heavens shall declare His righteousness: for God is judge Himself.” Psalm 50:6. That holy law, God’s righteousness, that amid thunder and flame was proclaimed from Sinai as the guide of life, is now revealed to men as the rule of judgment. The hand opens the tables, and there are seen the precepts of the Decalogue, traced as with a pen of fire. The words are so plain that all can read them. Memory is aroused, the darkness of superstition and heresy is swept from every mind, and God’s ten words, brief, comprehensive, and authoritative, are presented to the view of all the inhabitants of the earth (The Great Controversy, 1888 edition, p. 639).

I plan to be there, by the grace of God. Will you?

I think of the dedication of the temple. I would liked to have been there, but I also know that there is a temple that God has and only the 144,000 are allowed to enter that temple and everyone of them will shout “Alleluia.” There the prophet saw in vision the great sacrifice for us all—the lamb slain, as it were, and tied to a single, immense pillar. (See Early Writings, p. 78.) We will live in a holy city which, according to Revelation 21:22, actually needs no temple, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple. I am glad that, by the grace of God, I will be there. Will you?

I think about the time of Elijah. We live in a time when we are to give an Elijah message, a message that says, “Behold your God.” God’s people are to uphold the true God amidst the worship of Baal and we do not just have a single Ahab opposing us, but a world full of Ahabs and Jezebels who hate God and his ways and who live for everything that Satan and this world stand for. God’s people will not be among a silent seven thousand but amid the one hundred forty-four thousand who will give with a loud voice the three angels’ messages and the loud cry of Revelation 18. I am glad that, by the grace of God, I will be there. Will you?

I remember Esther, Daniel, and Nehemiah. God’s people in the end time will suffer under a death decree and they will pray for deliverance, and, beloved, I believe some will see death, but this death is only temporary because, according to Daniel 12:2, there will be a special resurrection. “All who have died in the faith of the third angel’s message come forth from the tomb glorified, to hear God’s covenant of peace with those who have kept his law (The Great Controversy, 1888 edition, p. 637).” God’s people will be delivered and we will be, like Nehemiah, people who will have exalted the law of God because it was trampled upon, who will rebuild the old waste places, and we will be, as it says in Isaiah 58:12, “The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in.” I am glad that, by the grace of God, I live today.

I think about the time of Jesus. The Bible says that his disciples will even do greater miracles than he did, and as beautiful as it was to hear the words of Christ, we live in a time and age when we have an even greater comprehension and understanding of those words than the apostles or of anyone who lived during that time. We will understand the gospel and the real issues of the final atonement better than anyone has ever understood it. And even though we may not lean upon the breast of Christ, we have his promise that he will not leave us comfortless but will come to us. We have the promise that Jesus and his Father will both come and make their abode with those who do their will. God’s people will experience the dying to self and will have the resurrected Christ living in them, “Christ in you, the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27).” I am glad, by the grace of God that I live today instead of then.

I think about the times of the apostles. They received the Holy Spirit in the early rain, but God’s last day saints will receive the Holy Spirit in even stronger and richer currents in the latter rain, and I am glad, by the grace of God, that I am alive now. Are you?

I remember the Reformation. God’s last-day people will finish the work that Luther, Wycliffe, Tyndale, and others started. Like Luther, they will stand before the highest tribunals and inquisitions the earth has to offer and will say, “I cannot and will not retract, for it is unsafe for a Christian to speak against his conscience. Here I stand. I can do no other. May God help me. Amen.” I am glad that by the grace of God I live today.

I remember our early pioneers, and, beloved, it is true that “we have nothing to fear for the future, except as we shall forget the way the Lord has led us, and His teaching in our past history (Life Sketches of Ellen G. White, p. 196).” God’s people, though, will see even more wonderful things and there is soon to come upon this earth the light of the glorious God. I am glad, by the grace of God, to be part of that which will finish the great Advent movement. Aren’t you?

Beloved, Moses and Noah were great men. It would have been wonderful to have lived during the time of creation, and to have seen the flood and ridden in the ark. It would have been magnificent to have seen the hand of God in the Exodus and the opening up the Red Sea, to have seen fire fall from heaven at the dedication of the temple and during the time of Elijah, but beloved, I was not alive then, nor in the time of Daniel, Esther, or Nehemiah. I did not walk the dusty roads of Galilee with Jesus, nor did I speak with tongues as the apostles did, but God has chosen each one of us to live now, not for ourselves but for others and for his cause. We are to uphold his character of selfless love and devotion to others. We see this illustrated in the parable of the Good Samaritan.

“And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead (Luke 10:30).” Jerusalem has a high elevation and Jericho has the lowest elevation in the area, so the road from Jerusalem to Jericho is literally down a tight, windy road. In the days of Jesus this road was known as the “bloody path” because it was a place where people were often waylaid, robbed, hurt, and even killed. This Jew had been accosted, perhaps by people of his own nation, and notice what happened: “And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side (vs. 31, 32).” The priest and the Levite saw the man and they were indifferent, so it seems. Maybe they had the desire to help but knew if they stopped they might also be hurt. Perhaps they thought the man really wasn’t hurt at all and was only lying in the path as bait so that he could rob them. For whatever reason, they passed by on the other side. “But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, And went to him [not to the other side], and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him (vs. 33, 34).” Some of us might have put him on the beast first and taken him down the path out of danger before caring for him, but this good Samaritan did not. He dealt with the needs of the man first, then took him to the inn and again provided for his needs there. Both the priest and Levite were concerned about what might happen to them if they stopped, but the Samaritan was concerned about what would happen to the one hurt if he did not stop. He did not think about his own self but about the other person. The Good Samaritan was willing to face danger and even death for this other person that was a stranger to him. The Good Samaritan thought as Christ would think, only for the good of others and for the glory of God. We are to remember that we are our brother’s keeper, and our brothers include those who are not Christians today. It includes those who are not trying to actively become part of the fold right now. Oh that we might watch out for others and be our brother’s keeper and desire to honor God! The one hundred forty-four thousand will.

It has been said that “every man has his price.” The truth is most people do have a price, but the one hundred forty-four thousand only have the price of the honor and glory of God as supreme. I am glad to be living at this time and to know that I can be a part of that group. Aren’t you?

As we think about giving the gospel and the loud cry, what shall we teach? What shall we show the world? Beloved, we must share the real gospel. There are many so-called gospels which Paul says are not the real gospel. He calls them “another gospel.” “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel (Galatians 1:6).” The word another is the Greek word heteros (eterov), and means not of the same kind or similar but of a different type. “Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ (v. 7).” The word another in verse 7 is not heteros but allos (allov) in the Greek which means another of the same kind. We only have the one word for another in English, but there are two words for another in Greek, and Paul says there are some who trouble you and would pervert the gospel of Christ. Can the gospel be perverted? Paul says it can. “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed (v. 8).” I know those are strong words, but it is exactly what the Bible says. Even if it is someone purporting to be an angel from heaven were preaching a different gospel, God does not look upon it favorably. It brings tears and weeping to the heart of God, and he is not pleased. Paul said, “Woe unto me if I preach not the gospel.” 

People sometimes say to me, “How sure are you of what you are preaching?” I tell you I am very sure and any person who ever steps into the sacred desk should be very sure of what they are saying. If you give the real gospel, you will not be popular. The real gospel will not draw large crowds. It will not tickle the multitudes’ ears and make them happy. It will not be easy to present the gospel in the last days. It will involve sacrifice and hardship, but Jesus says “he that endureth to the end shall be saved (Matthew 10:22).” Paul counsels Timothy, his beloved son in the faith, in his last letter: “Thou therefore endure hardess, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ (2 Timothy 2:3).” There is hardship in a Christian life, and Paul told his beloved son to endure hardship because he knew Timothy would need to. He also told Timothy to “watch thou in all things, endure afflictions (2 Timothy 4:5).” God’s people love him so much that they will pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support every brother and sister in the faith that they can, and oppose every false doctrine and teaching to assure the survival and success of the cause of the gospel.

“Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke (Isaiah 58:6)?” In the long history of this world, every generation has been called upon to defend the truth and honor of God, but only this generation has been called upon to defend and honor the truth of God under the greatest assaults of Satan that the universe will have ever known. I do not shrink from this responsibility. I welcome it. I am glad to be living now and I do not believe that any of us would exchange places with any people or with any generation, whether at the time of the flood, at creation, at the Exodus, at the giving of the commandments, at the dedication of the temple, at the time of Christ, or at the times of the aposttles. Not one of us would trade places with any of those people if we understood the privilege and the gravity of what it means to be living at this time. The energy, the faith, and the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will lighten our church and all of its members and the glow of that fire will go out to truly lighten the world.

Finally, my brothers and sisters, let us demand of one another the same high standard of strength and sacrifice which those before us have given. With a good conscience and a sure reward in the world to come, go forward, knowing that God is the final judge of our deeds. Let us go forward to live the cause that we love, asking God’s blessing and his help, and knowing that here on earth God’s work must truly be our own, that he has no hands but our hands, no feet but our feet, and no mouth but our mouths. May God bless us because we are living in the time of the Chosen Generation.  -- Allen Stump


Prayer Requests

Much more could be done to win the world for Christ if the talents of God’s people were recognized and utilized to help spread the gospel. This would also bring life and vitality into the local groups, for “The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself.” (Proverbs 11:25).

Therefore, this month we want to share in prayer for Brother Lynnford Beachy’s desire and burden to be able to labor in training others to do evangelistic work. He is planning on working with Brother Andy Whitehurst of Riverton, Wyoming in six to eight week training semiars, helping others to know the truths of the Bible and how to share them effectively. Please seek God sincerely that this effort might bring forth much fruit.  -- Editor


Letters

Reprinted here are portions of letters we have received that are of a general nature, along with our responses, which we hope will be of interest to our readers.

My name is M_____, and I live in Holland. I would like to receive your Old Paths. My dear friend J_____ always tells me about the Old Paths and she had made some copies for me because I don’t have Internet access. I will be very glad if I can receive your paper at home. When I made my decision that I wouldn’t visit the church anymore, I had a lot of support by reading and studying all information on your site, so I still keep the Sabbath and I do home-study with my 8-year-old son. I pray that my Lord will bless you so you will keep doing the good work, and I still hope to meet you some day, maybe here in Holland. A lot of greetings with love, for all brothers and sisters over there and let us keep on supporting each other in our faith with prayer and work.

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This is R____& L____ from IL. We came to the WV camp meeting this past summer. We really had a great time. The days that we spent with you and the others were a total oasis to our spiritual life. Please greet all the brothers and sisters from our behalf. We ask God to keep blessing you in this ministry. Hope to see you soon here or in heaven.

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Thank you so very much for taking time out of your very busy schedule to speak with me on two occasions. The valley I have been traversing has been very deep and very long.  The brightest spot for me since July 04 has been watching and listening to each video message on your web page.  The Wednesday night bible study and prayer meeting was especially beneficial.

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My name is T_____ I requested some information on the trinity doctrine that you sent me. I just want to thank you for the material [on the trinity doctrine]. It clarified some of my thinking. It amazes me how something like this has been overlooked for so long when the Bible is so plain about it.

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Is there going to be 2006 camp meeting video releases? I would very much like a copy of Lynnford’s “Transparency” that I watched on-line. I want to share this one because it really hit me hard.

Reply: These videos are available upon request.

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Allen, I am truly sorry, brother, to hear about Hans this morning. It has been very difficult for you I know. My family will be praying for you at this time. May God bless you my friend in Christ and strengthen you.

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S____ and I are very sorry that your son Hans passed away Tuesday evening. This must be a terrible shock to you and your family. We pray that the Lord will give you his comfort and consolation after such a horrific loss.

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We send our deepest sympathy to the family for the loss of your precious son Hans. We loved him like he was our own. May God grant you peace in this time of sorrow. God bless.

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Please accept our deepest sympathy, in this difficult time you’re going through. Sister G_____ informed us about the sad news which occurred in your family, and wish to let you know that we’re praying for you. May our God keep you in his almighty hand.

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I received the terrible news about Han’s death last night (our Internet was down all day yesterday). I cannot tell you how sorry I am to hear. I know that he was expected to die, but somehow I did not really think it was to be so soon. Somehow, I cannot think of Smyrna without Hans.

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I have recently shared the non-trinitarian truth with a dear sister who I know appreciates and seeks the truth. She requested some information on the subject and I would like to give her your book, The Foundation of our Faith. How could I go about ordering hard copies of this monumental work?

Reply: Just contact us using the information on the back page and we will be more than glad to help! 

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A reader wrote in with the reference for the frequently misused quotation by Sister White regarding the Adventist Church—“The church appears about to fall...” I thought it was in Selected Messages, bk. 2, but I cannot find it. It would have been 2000-2001 when you printed it in the “Letters” section of Old Paths. Could someone there help me out?I’ve got the book, as I recall looking it up. I just can’t remember which book it is in.

Reply: The statement you make reference to says, in part, “Satan will work his miracles to deceive; he will set up his power as supreme. The church may appear as about to fall, but it does not fall. It remains, while the sinners in Zion will be sifted out—the chaff separated from the precious wheat.” This statement was first published the SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 7, p. 911. It was next printed in Selected Messages, bk. 2, p. 380. The quotation is from letter 55, 1886, written from Basel, Switzerland to G. I. Butler and S. N. Haskell on December 8, 1886. The entire letter is found in Manuscript Releases, vol. 12, pp. 317-328. 

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Thank you for the new Old Paths. The article on Calvary [October 2007] is awesome! It was very enlightening.


Youth’s Corner — God Has A Plan

Our story this month is in three parts. The first part is about Floyd and some of his friends. The second part is about Justine, and the third part is about a little boy whose name I do not know.

Floyd lived a little over one hundred years ago, and his older sister taught school two or three miles away from their home. She rode her horse to the school on Monday morning and then returned home Friday afternoon. Floyd’s job was to follow her on his horse as she rode to school on Monday morning and then lead her horse back home to stay with him during the week. He would return on Friday to pick her up. On one particular morning in May, he and two of his older brothers followed her to school and on their way back stopped at the Skunk River. They stopped because they knew the river was quite high due to all the rain that had fallen recently. In fact, the boys expected that the river to be overflowing its banks and filling up the nearby shallow ponds with plenty of fish and water. They had brought their spears along that morning just in case, for they knew it would be easy to catch the fish that had come up over the riverbanks into the shallow ponds.

They got off their horses and looked at a pond that was about one hundred yards across, and in the middle of this pond was a grebe. Grebes are water birds, and Floyd’s older brother, John, quickly filled up his pockets with rocks and started after the grebe. John was a very good shot and he began to throw rocks out to where the grebe was. Do you know what happened next? Just as the rock landed, the grebe disappeared! John kept throwing rocks and every time when the rock landed, the grebe vanished! The other boys tried to hit the grebe also, and then a neighbor friend joined them! Now there were four boys trying to catch the grebe, but each time the grebe dove a fraction of a second before the rock arrived. Grebes are wonderful divers, and they dive under water to feed.

Then the boys thought, “If we cannot hit the grebe with a rock, we can surround him and catch him that way. There are four of us and only one bird, and the pond is shallow enough for us to walk out to him.” So, out they waded and on their way out they picked up boards and sticks to use to hold the grebe under water while catching him. They carefully walked out to where the grebe was and do you know what happened? He disappeared again and popped up fifty feet away from them, a happy little bird swimming in the water. Then they waded to the new spot to surround him, but he disappeared again and resurfaced in a place further away from them! This went on for hours. The boys were sure if they could just creep up on the grebe quietly and cautiously they would catch him! After a while, the grebe realized the boys were serious about catching him, so the next time he disappeared, it was harder for the boys to find him because the grebe resurfaced by just putting his bill up through the water in order to get some air. “Now,” they thought, “we can catch him because he cannot see us coming!” So they went over to the grebe as quietly as they could, without making a ripple in the water, but the bill disappeared and showed up several yards away behind them! They followed the bill around in the pond! Floyd later said, “One time I watched the grebe dive right between my legs and I still could not catch him!” The very same thing happened to the other boys as well. By noon, the boys were getting hungry and since they could not find the bill of the grebe anywhere in the pond now, they decided they had worn the grebe out so much that he had finally died, and they started for home. They mounted their horses and looked back on the pond one last time, and do you know what they saw? The grebe! Right in the middle of pond, floating around as if nothing unusual had happened that morning!

Now, who made the grebe? God did, of course, and he made the grebe in a marvelous way and for a wonderful purpose. The grebe is the best diver of all the birds. Man tries to dive, other birds dive, but the grebe is superior to them all. This great bird was able to keep away from all four boys for three hours by his excellent ability to dive. He saw the rocks coming and down he dove! At the right moment, he disappeared under the water when the boys were trying to surround him and without a ripple he slipped away. He is a wonderful example of the creation of God.

The next part of our story is about Justine. When Justine was born she weighed only 3 pounds and 6 ounces. Because she was so little, she had to stay in a neonatal intensive care unit, a unit with rows and rows of other tiny patients, babies who were born much sooner than they should have been or who had very serious health problems. All of these babies needed a nurse and a doctor to take care of them. When I visited Justine, I walked by tiny babies, some of whom had tubes attached to them to help them eat and tubes to help them breathe. Some also had special lights on them to keep them healthy. Sometimes the babies were too tiny to stay warm on their own, so they needed a special heated bed to sleep in. But it does not matter how small each baby happens to be or how sick they might be, God has a special purpose for each one of them. We may not understand what that purpose is right now, for these babies were all very tiny and could only eat and sleep, but each baby, if the Lord wills, can grow and hopefully follow in God’s plan. Sometimes the babies do not live, however, because they are too sick or they are too tiny and cannot grow, but even then God has a purpose for each of their lives. When I was able to hold Justine, I noticed how her little hands were made so perfectly. Even her little fingers and fingernails were beautiful! If a baby such as she should not live, our hearts can still be drawn to the great and wise Creator by beholding aspects of his amazing creative ability. We may not understand everything about life and death, but God still has an overruling purpose for every boy and girl born.

The last part of our story is about a little boy. I do not know his name, but he was very sick. Perhaps he was five years old, and a doctor was talking to him while his mother and father sat nearby. His parents looked very sober because they knew the doctor was saying something very serious. The doctor was explaining to this little boy the procedure the doctor was going to perform. He was to make an incision in his skin so he could take a look at his heart. The doctor explained, “I am going to check out your heart because there are some very serious things wrong with it.” Then the little boy said, with his eyes bright, “You’ll find Jesus there. When you look at my heart, you’ll find Jesus.” The doctor stopped for a minute and then continued, “When I look inside, I am going to look at the vessels of your heart also.” The little boy interrupted, “Jesus is there. You will find him there when you look at my heart.” The doctor stopped for another minute and then said, “When I am finished, I will close the skin back up and when you get better from the surgery, we will talk about it.” “I know you’ll find Jesus,” the boy said, “for the Bible says he is in my heart!”

The doctor did not say any more to the little boy then, but after he had checked out his heart, he realized the child was far sicker than he had thought and there was nothing that could be done to help him. God still had a purpose, however, for that little boy. The doctor did not know what to do for him, and he was feeling quite sad and upset about it. He thought, “Why is this happening to a sweet little boy who has done nothing to deserve it?” As he was trying to sort his thoughts out, God spoke to his heart: “I have a purpose for this young man. It is true he is very ill, but there is a purpose for his life, and that purpose is to bring another lamb into my fold.” “Well, how can he do this?” the doctor reasoned. Then the doctor realized that this little boy was touching his heart and that he was coming to know God better because of this little boy. Just like little babies in a neonatal unit can touch hearts, God can use each person to touch someone else’s heart and mind if we will let it happen, no matter if the young person is sick or healthy.

You can be a blessing to other people, too. God has a purpose for you life, and he has created you in a special way, just as he created the grebe to be an extra-special diver. Justine was a blessing even while in the hospital, and this very sick little boy was used by God to speak to the doctor’s heart. What we need to remember is, if someone could look into our hearts, would Jesus be found living there? We know we cannot really see Jesus living inside someone’s heart, but we can know that Jesus is in our hearts by what we do and what we say and by how we try to help other people. Every morning when we wake up, let’s ask Jesus to live in our hearts. This will help us follow God’s plan for our lives, and we will be a blessing to others too! -- Onycha Holt


Elyssa’s Graham Crackers

The following recipe is from Elyssa Sims and it makes excellent crackers. I know because I have been blessed to eat several!     Editor

1/3 cup oil

1/3 cup honey

¾ cup oat flour

1 and ¼ cups whole wheat pastry flour

1and ½ teaspoons coriander

¼ teaspoon salt

In a small bowl, beat first two ingredients together with a fork. In another bowl, stir remaining ingredients together. Pour liquid mixture into dry ingredients and mix together well. Put dough on cookie sheet and flatten. Cover with waxed paper and roll out dough. Score. Bake at 350 degrees for eight minutes. Yield: One 18” x 12” pan or forty-four 1 ½” x 3” crackers.


 The Modern Age and Your Health

By Allen Stump & Onycha Holt

What would a world without plastic be like? Casually, we might not think much on this question since humanity did quite well without plastics until the last century. However, few things have changed life as much as have plastics. If you don’t believe this, just start noticing the things in your home and surroundings that are made entirely, mostly, or partly from plastic. Specifically, the cups we drink from, the plates we eat on, the containers in which we store food, and the pipes that bring us our drinking water all may contain plastic.

Plastic Contamination

Janet Raloff reported in the September 29, 2007 issue of Science News in an article entitled Clearly Concerning the recent findings of two panels of experts who were commissioned to review the data on the health risks of bisphenol A (BPA). BPA is a chemical used to make polycarbonate plastic. This is the hard, clear plastic that is “used in baby bottles, flatware, watercooler bottles, and the work bowls of food processors,” and it is “an essential ingredient of epoxy resins used to line food and beverage cans and even to seal cavity-prone teeth.” The problem is that BPA does not stay in the plastic or in the epoxy. “Hard and clear plastics are typically made of polycarbonate plastic and they tend to leach bisphenol A with age and after heating.” The author states that “it inevitably leaches into foods and people’s mouths,” and traces of it is now found “in everyone’s body.” She states that this chemical can alter “sex-specific behaviors, perturb developmentally important hormones, boost fat cell numbers and their accumulation of lipids, foster precancerous changes in cells, and induce insulin resistance, a harbinger of diabetes.” Randy Jirtle of Duke University has studied the effect of BPA on agouti mice and recently published his results showing that “fetal BPA exposure can reprogram lifelong gene activity” in the mice. (All emphasis in this article supplied unless otherwise noted.) One of the panels of experts “concluded that BPA exposure in the womb can permanently alter genes of animals, impair the function of organs in ways that persist into adulthood, and trigger brain, behavioral, and reproductive effects, including diminished sperm production.” It also concluded that it is likely BPA causes “a heightened sensitivity to carcinogens, impaired immunity, and diminished insulin sensitivity.” In her article, Raloff lists several adverse effects linked to BPA and concludes with this tip from Retha R. Newbold of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences: “If a new mom must use plastic kitchenware, keep it out of the microwave and dishwasher. That’s one answer that BPA research has already provided: Heating polycarbonate plastics frees more BPA, which then leaches into foods.”

Now, you might be wondering if Saran Wrap is made from polycarbonate, but it is not. It is made from polyethylene, according to their website at http://www.saranbrands.com/faq.asp#1; however, you should keep in mind that different varieties of cling wrap are composed of different substances. The Green Guide by National Geographic  includes a helpful list of what to look for and what to avoid in plastics, along with other useful information about plastic compositions, including PVC—the second most frequently produced plastic.(http://www.thegreenguide.com/reports/product.mhtml?id=44&sec=3

Water Pipes

You may also wonder if water running through PVC (polyvinylchloride) pipes in our homes is safe to drink. The Green Guide by National Geographic states:

However, to address your immediate concern, while installed in your walls or in the ground PVC pipe does not appear particularly hazardous to your health...There are other additives to worry about in PVC pipe, but most evidence seems to say that you shouldn’t worry too much (http://www.thegreenguide.com/doc/98/pipe).

It should be noted, however, that PVC should not be used in connection with hot applications. For those applications, the more heat resistant CPVC is normally used, and the black roll pipe commonly used for underground water supply lines to our homes  is made from polyethelene and is not associated with great health risks at this time.

Other Food Storage

What about Tupperware? The article on plastics at Delicious Organics.com states that the Environmental Health Perspectives recommends “most Tupperware, Glad, Hefty, Ziploc and Saran…” for use. (http://www.deliciousorganics.com/Controversies/plastic.htm)You will find more information about Tupperware at http://www.tupperware-blog.com/tupperware-overview/is-tupperware-cancer-causing-38/, and the last place we would like to bring to your attention is http://www.latimes.com/features/health/columnists/la-he-plastics10sep10,1,5631871.column?page=3&cset=true&ctrack=1&coll=la-health-columns, which is a recent article in the Los Angeles Times that will provide interesting and enlightening reading on the negative effects of plastic in our daily lives. 

God has led his people along, step by step, in health reform. Counsel has been given us concerning the use of coffee, tea, caffeine, and other articles of food, as well as in healthful dress and the eight natural remedies. We hope this short article on plastics will encourage you to study further, for your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and God command you to glorify him in your body, and in your spirit, which are his. (1 Corinthians 6:19, 20)

May we care for our temple and keep it in the best health possible so that we might have clearer minds to discern truth and also so that we might bring honor and glory to God.


Questions on Doctrine Conference

On October 24-27, 2007, the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University will host a conference on the 50th anniversary of the publication of the book, Questions on Doctrine. This issue of Old Paths is being printed before the conference convenes, so a report will have to wait until next month. At the time of this writing, there are over 120 registered attendees and more are expected to register when the conference begins. For some background history and information on the importance of the publishing of Questions on Doctrine, see the article “The History of the Sanctuary Message” in the October 2007 issue of Old Paths.  -- Allen Stump


A Special Thank You

Last month I wrote to inform our friends of the death of my son, Hans, and to tell you a little bit about his Christian experience. On September 30th, a memorial service was conducted with about 175 people in attendance. This service was mostly a testimony meeting, with many sharing how God had used Hans to make a difference in their lives, as well as the lives of others. Being an ambulance dispatcher, Hans was well loved by his fellow workers in EMS. Several EMS personnel attended the service, along with ambulances and a fire truck. There was even a Health Net helicopter flyover. Of the many testimonies, I am sure that all were touched by the words shared by Hans’ sister, Heidi. She told, in five short minutes, how courageous, kind and loving her best friend had been. She expressed the joy of loving the God that Hans personally knew and how she was always encouraged by his never failing devotion to God. 

On behalf of Hans’ family, I would like to thank all those who came to the memorial or who sent flowers. I would like to share many thanks to the scores who sent cards and letters. One writer shared the experience of losing an adult daughter, and it was so touching and helpful to know that others could truly relate to my sorrow. This reminds me of how Jesus took upon his sinless nature our sinful nature as that he could help us, and, in so doing, know that we have a Saviour who is truly touched with the feelings of our infirmities.

We were also grateful to those who brought food or helped with the memorial in any way. To those who called or made other personal efforts to comfort and aid our family we are deeply indebted.

As I noted last month, in keeping with Hans’ spirit of giving, Hans’ body was donated to the West Virginia University Medical School for research, so that those who follow him might have a better chance for life than he had. I would like to acknowledge the West Virginia University Gift Registry for the kindness they have shown to us and the dignity with which they treat Hans.

While we know that Hans is at rest waiting for the coming of the Lord when we shall be reunited, our hearts still miss him, as all do their deceased loved ones. However, God is good and we praise him for giving us such a wonderful son. Please continue to lift us up in prayer that we might be comforted of God and always be faithful. -- Allen Stump


 Ohio Camp Meeting/Retreat

God’s Word, God’s Way ministry hosted a camp meeting/retreat at the beautiful Pymatuning State Park in Ohio. Pyamtuning Lake borders Ohio and Pennsylvania and provided a perfect backdrop for the fellowship and gospel meetings. Pastor Willis Smith from God’s Word, God’s Way ministry along with Cheryl Bonner and the members of the Cleveland fellowship did a wonder job hosting this event and made all feel very much at home. Our heavenly Father certainly provided wonderful weather for the meetings. Evenings were cool with temperatures in the high 50 and low 60 degrees Fahrenheit (10-15.5 degrees Celsius) and the days were mostly sunny with temperatures in the 70’s and even low 80’s (21-28 degrees Celsius). We were told that it was at least 10 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than normal. In fact, it is possible for this area to receive a light snow at that time of year! We praise God that he foresaw the need and provided such wonderful weather.

The theme of the camp was “The King is Coming.” It is our prayer that all

MIsswho attended received strength from the fellowship, the experiences obtained, and the messages to be better prepared for the very soon return of Jesus Christ. One thing the word of God is clear upon, if we are going to see Jesus coming in the clouds of heaven in peace, we must be clothed with the righteousness of Christs. The Apostle Paul stated:

Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith (Philippians 3:8, 9)

The camp meeting was especially graced with Brothers Howard Williams, Neville Morris, and Pastor David Clayton from Jamaica. Several from the area attended the meetings and Sabbath was a sweet experience with several testimonies being shared, some giving a public testimony for the first time. Brother Abraham Westbrook shared publicly his commitment to follow Jesus by being baptized by Brother Ken Corklin who has studied with Abraham extensively.

Pastor Willis stated that God’s Word, God’s Way ministry is “looking forward to making it an ongoing annual event, Lord willing.” Pastor Smith also has a regular radio program which covers much of the eastern part of the United States. You can hear it on frequencies 1120 AM and 1440 AM, Saturday evenings from 8:00-9:00 EST, and also on Sunday evenings from 9:00-9:30.  -- Allen Stump


Mission Trip Report

by Lynnford Beachy

Since our last mission trip update in January, we have had some wonderful experiences, some of which I would like to share with you.

Tucson, Arizona

We were in Tucson for three months over the winter, where we were involved in witnessing to some of my old friends (I grew up in Tucson), as well as meeting new Christian friends. We attended several Bible studies and distributed literature around the city. One highlight was in working with one of the local churches to feed the homeless and give out Bibles and literature. My wife and children were a big help in this witnessing endeavor.

We attended a debut of a new music CD prepared by a friend of ours. She asked me to come to the front and share with everyone a little about the publishing work and give everyone a free copy of my book, God’s Love on Trial. Before leaving, a pastor in attendance asked me to speak at his church the following week. When I arrived, I was happy to find that it is a drug rehabilitation center, so I shared my experiences in how God pulled me out of drugs and alcohol. The Lord greatly blessed in these meetings, and they asked me to return the following week to explain how I came to write the book God’s Love on Trial that had been given to everyone in the church. The following week, I shared the reality of God’s love in giving his Son to die for us, showing how the trinity doctrine distorts our perception of God’s love by denying the Sonship and death of Christ. Amazingly, I have an open invitation to speak in the church the next time I return.

Orlando, Florida Camp Meeting

Our next trip was to a camp meeting near Orlando, Florida. On the way, we held meetings in Dallas, Texas, and at a drug rehab in Pensacola, Florida (Emerald Coast Ministries with Chaplain Jack VanOrd). This gave me another opportunity to share my testimony of how God delivered me from drugs.

The camp meeting was a blessing to many. The messages were stimulating, and encouraging.

On the way back to Arizona, we had meetings in Old Town and Pensacola, Florida and again in Dallas, Texas.

Riverton, WY

While I was in Tucson, I received a call from a church elder in Wyoming, Andy Whitehurst, who had been studying what the Bible says about God, in contrast with the man-made trinity doctrine, and he had a lot of questions. Later, he asked me to come to Wyoming and hold meetings on this subject. In early May, my family and I traveled north to Wyoming, and on the way we had meetings in Moab, Utah.

The meetings in Riverton, Wyoming, were a real blessing. I met several people I had not met before. Several people were open to learn what the Bible says about God. One family attended from Montana and requested we hold meetings in their home town as well. Providentially, we had one week free in August that allowed us to fit them into the schedule.

My family and I were glad to meet Andy and Christy Whitehurst. Andy was an elder in a church and had a desire to outreach to his community but did not have the training. The Lord opened the doors for him to attend a school of evangelism in Sacramento, California. He gained some valuable training in this field. While Andy was there, the instructors told him and the other students about people who do not believe in the Holy Spirit (a misrepresentation of our teaching) and proceeded to teach them how to answer people who hold this view. The answers given seemed very weak to Andy and caused him to study the subject out for himself, after which he discovered that the trinity doctrine is not biblical. He returned to his home church in Riverton only to be told by them that he could not talk about God in church. He began working in the community and has started two study groups. Andy was working toward holding an evangelistic series in the fall, and we agreed to work on it together.

West Virginia Camp Meeting

The West Virginia camp meeting was a blessing to many. One highlight was the large Spanish group who traveled from Indianapolis, Indiana, to attend camp meeting, one of whom was baptized there. There were some good messages presented by Dennis Robertson, Allen Stump, Leon Holt, David Sims, Ann Ford, etc. On the last day there were some wonderful testimonies.

The Lord gave me four messages to share, three of which were transcribed and printed in the June, July, and August issues of Present Truth. Something happened to me there that had never happened before. A little over an hour before one of my presentations, Allen Stump called me asking the title of my message for that night. I told him I would call him back in ten minutes with the title. I prayed about it, putting before the Lord the studies I had prepared and seeking his will for which one I should present that night. The Lord impressed me that I should share a study entitled “The Preparation of the Heart,” which did not match any of the studies I had prepared. During the next hour, the Lord used me to quickly prepare a study on this topic. I was glad to see how the Lord worked this out, and the message was well received.

At the camp meeting the messages brought conviction, and a renewed desire to commit our lives to God 100%, holding nothing back. I pray that the seeds planted will continue to grow.

Indianapolis, Indiana

The meetings in Indianapolis went very well. I was asked to share on the truth about God. I spoke through an interpreter because many of those attending only spoke Spanish. I was encouraged to see the zeal and dedication of many of them. Elder Ramon Irizarry has been working very hard, along with Oscar Cortez, in organizing this group. Ramon has organized several groups for a denominational church before getting disfellowshiped for not believing in the trinity. Ramon seems to always be on the phone or visiting people to encourage them in their walk with the Lord. Ramon’s wife and one of his sons are attending school in Mexico, where they are working with a study group. Another one of Ramon’s sons, Ramon Jr., traveled with his family from Chicago to attend the meetings. Later that week, my wife and I enjoyed our visit to their home in Chicago. They are doing what they can to witness in their community.

Newark, Ohio

Our next meetings were held in a small conference church in Newark, Ohio. The meetings were a blessing, focusing on denying ourselves and living wholly for God. A sick lady attended with a young boy. She had been sitting on her porch for the past few days and had asked her young helper to check to see if the church doors were open. When they finally were open on Sabbath, she said she wanted to come to church. This was the first time she had ever come to this church, and she had never been invited to come. She really appreciated the meeting and desired to have Bible studies in her home, which one of the local Bible workers agreed to do.

This church has been unique for the past twenty years. The members are non-trinitarian, but the pastor is trinitarian. They have had several pastors sent from the conference, all of whom failed to persuade the members to accept the unscriptural trinity doctrine.

Cleveland, Ohio

Our next meeting was held in Cleveland, Ohio, with Elder Willis Smith. I spoke on denying yourself. It was a pleasure to meet some of the new believers in that area. On Sabbath evening, Elder Smith invited me to speak on his radio program. We spoke together about what Jesus taught regarding the identity of God. We saw that consistently Jesus referred to his Father as God and nobody else.

Pennsylvania Camp Meeting

The camp meeting in Pennsylvania was one of the best I have attended. The Spirit of God was there to bring conviction and a spirit of love to all. I shared on totally surrendering to God and the death of Christ. Brother Willis Smith shared some good messages on the identity of the archangel Michael. Richard Stratton shared on the sanctuary message. David Clayton shared on righteousness by faith. Calvin Bickel shared some insights on health. There were some heartfelt testimonies and a few baptisms.

A man attending from South Carolina asked me to come to his town and hold an evangelistic series next spring for his community. Please pray for the Lord’s blessing in that area.

Cadillac, Michigan

The meetings in Cadillac, Michigan, were interesting. Most of the people in attendance I had never met before, and they all seemed eager to learn the truth about God. Many accepted the truth at these meetings.

Our hosts had invited several people in the area, and, to my surprise, they were threatened with a lawsuit by a local church pastor for inviting some of his members. It never amounted to anything, but I had a hard time believing that a pastor would do something like this.

Wilson, Michigan

Next, we traveled to Wilson, Michigan, to hold meetings. It was a delight to finally meet our host, Jim Pierce, a brother who had been requesting meetings in his area for a couple years. I shared on the love of God in giving his Son, both to die for us and to live in us. It was hard for some to understand this because of a preconceived idea that Christ cannot live in us because, they claimed, he gave up his omnipresence forever and has to send someone else to live in us, called the Holy Spirit. It was sad to hear this, but some were able to see the reality of Christ living in us, “the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27).

Oxford, Wisconsin

Our next meetings were in Oxford, Wisconsin. There was a diverse group assembled, eager to learn from the Bible. The Lord really blessed at these meetings with a powerful blend of the transforming love of God in giving his Son to die for us and righteousness by faith. I was encouraged to see some of the younger people being touched by the truth, as well as the older folks. These meetings were encouraging. Please pray that the seeds sown will bring forth much fruit.

Bemidji, Minnesota

We visited my dad and step-mom in International Falls, Minnesota, and then held meetings near Bemidji, Minnesota. I spoke on constantly seeking the will of God and was encouraged that several there had been studying the same subject. After the meetings, we stayed a few days with some dear friends and then again went to visit my dad. The following week, we had meetings at the same location near Bemidji, with a focus on the truth about God. Some new people attended and seemed very interested in the messages.

Red Lodge, Montana

We traveled through North Dakota, with a short stop at the Badlands, before arriving in Red Lodge, Montana for our next meetings. Our friends, Andy and Christy from Wyoming, drove up to attend the meetings. There were several people there who had not learned the truth about God. I shared many messages on this subject in a very open format, with much discussion. One meeting lasted over three hours, but everyone seemed to be very interested. I really appreciated my wife’s input at these meetings. Several people embraced the truth for the first time, and we had two baptisms in the shallow, cold river that flowed behind the meeting area. It was a thrill to see lives changed by the powerful love of God.

Arlee, Montana

Our week in Montana was our tightest schedule, with meetings every day in four different locations. Some believers requested us to hold meetings in Arlee, Montana, where some were confused about which day is the Sabbath. This became our focus during these meetings, with the truth shining brightly and all coming to the knowledge of the seventh-day (Saturday) Sabbath.

Eureka, Montana

In Eureka, Montana, I shared messages on righteousness by faith and the sanctuary. We had some lively discussions. It was a delight to see the dedication of those present to know what the Bible says for themselves.

While we were in this part of Montana, we took a side-trip to Glacier National Park. It was neat to see wild mountain goats and big horn sheep walking right beside the trail as we hiked to Hidden Lake.

Wenatchee, Washington

We stayed two Sabbaths in the Wenatchee area, holding meetings in two different locations. The first Sabbath we studied on seeking the will of God. A family attended from a Foursquare Church who had many questions. We had a few visits and studies during the week, and the next Sabbath we had a meeting northwest of Wenatchee at a health retreat center, hosted by Eldon Noyes. I was glad to meet some new people. We had several studies on the new birth and then a study on Christ living in you, rather than a third god living in you. It was a blessing, and several said they finally understand the message much clearer than before. We visited a few others before leaving the Wenatchee area.

Ontario, Oregon

I was supposed to have a meeting in a prison in Oregon, but it did not fit into the chaplain’s schedule, and I was only able to visit one of the prisoners. We are hoping to schedule meetings for another time. It was a pleasure to get to meet a man who has been very active in spreading the gospel in the prison. He also has written a book that I believe will be helpful to many when it is published.

A Death in West Virginia

On Tuesday night, September 18, we received a call informing us that Hans Stump, Allen Stump’s son, had passed away. The next morning we packed our car to go to West Virginia. My family and I wanted to make sure we did not miss the funeral, and we wanted to spend some time with the family. It turned out that the memorial service was more than a week and a half later, but we stayed for it, and I had to find another speaker to cover for me at the Oregon camp meeting. Our friend, Andy Whitehurst, graciously stepped in to help out in organizing and speaking at the camp meeting. Two speakers from Washington came to help out also. It was good to be able be in West Virginia again, and the memorial service was very nice, filled with some encouraging testimonies about how Hans has touched many lives. Please continue to pray for Hans’ father, Allen; his sister, Heidi; and his mother, Charmaine, as well as the rest of the family, as they deal with the loss of such a wonderful person.

Riverton, Wyoming

The evangelistic series in Riverton went very well. It was the first time I used Power Point presentations in a Bible study. The messages were entitled:

Every message was blessed by God. This was the first time I had the pleasure of hearing Andy Whitehurst give presentations, all of which were very powerful and enlightening. Several people attended a meeting like this for the first time, and some made their stand for the truth and committed themselves to follow the Lord. Please pray that they will all continue steadfast unto the end.

A lady who was staying next to us was one of the people who made their stand for the truths presented. Five days after the seminar was over, this lady used the Strong’s Concordance and the Bible we had given her at the seminar and discovered that Saturday is the Sabbath instead of Sunday. She was astounded and thought that we would call her crazy for thinking such a thing. She was shocked to find out that we already knew that Saturday is the Sabbath. This is something that we were planning to cover on our follow-up studies with her, but she found it before we could share it with her. It was delightful to see how the Lord is leading her. She has already invited several people to our studies, and brought one lady with her to the meetings.

It was a blessing to see how these meetings came together. Andy spoke or operated the video camera, Christy controlled the Power Point presentations and helped run the camera. Kendra led out in song service and ran the children’s department. I spoke and made sure the technical aspects ran smoothly. We made a good team. We are preparing to be able to hold meetings like these in many other areas, teaching others to do the same in their local communities. Please pray that many will come to know the Lord as a result of this outreach.

Upcoming Meetings in Your Area

Here is the currently-planned 2007 itinerary for Lynnford Beachy:

November  2, 3  — Hot Springs, NC, contact Charles Wilson, 828-622-3671. Note: I will be speaking via a DVD and available for questions by telephone conference. 

November 10Riverton, WY, contact Andy Whitehurst, 307-840-3213. 

November  17Grass Valley, CA, contact Emil Maghiar, 530-268-2661. 

December  1Temecula, CA, contact Dee and Don Hager, 951-677-0726. 

December  7, 8Yuma, Arizona, contact John and Judie Brown, 928-503-6160. 

December  29Tucson, Arizona, contact Carolyne Scripp, 520-808-3004. 

Note: Please notice that my trip to Africa in November or December has been postponed. I apologize for any confusion this may have caused. Lord willing, the trip can still take place next year.

Between these meetings, we will be available to visit people in their homes and to have additional meetings. If you would like to host meetings in your area, please contact Lynnford Beachy at (304) 633-5411.


Old Paths is a free monthly newsletter/study-paper published monthly by Smyrna Gospel Ministries, HC 64 Box 128-B, Welch WV 24801-9606. U.S.A. It is sent free upon request. The paper is dedicated to the propagation and restoration of the principles of truth that God gave to the early Seventh-day Adventist pioneers. Duplication is not only permitted, but strongly encouraged. This issue, with other gospel literature we publish, can be found at our web sites. The urls are: http://www.smyrna.org and http://www.presenttruth.info. Phone: (304) 732-9204. Fax: (304) 732-7322.

Editor: Allen Stump - E-mail: editor@smyrna.org.
Assistant to the Editor: Onycha Holt - E-mail Onycha@smyrna.org

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