Following Elder MacGuire's Bible Study, various ones shared their responses to the message. These follow.
I have been very much impressed with the subject this morning. Somehow I feel in meetings of this kind that I am really sitting at the feet of Jesus and learning of Him. I was especially impressed with the thought of making this matter of bringing souls to Christ simple. My mind went back many years to the work which I helped to start in the city of Chicago thirty-three years ago. I remember very well a man coming to me, a man under the influence of drink, one of the most unpromising subjects you could think of. I took him down, of course, as we did at that time, and cleaned him up, burned up the clothing which he had on, covered with filth, and bound up his wounds, for he was a mass of corruption from a terrible and incurable disease.
After doing so, I sat down with him and read to him a few verses from the Bible, and knelt and prayed with him. It was remarkable, the change which took place in that man's life. He gave up drink. I have not time to dwell upon it.
I said nothing to him about the use of tobacco. I thought it would be leading him a little too fast to attempt that; but some time later he said to me, " You don't smoke."
I said, " No," and he wanted to know why I didn't smoke. I told him my body was God's temple, that Christ in me would not smoke. He handed me his pipe and tobacco, and said he wouldn't smoke any more.
I said to him, "You will have a hard time to give it up."
He said, "No, that Book you gave me said that where sin abounds, grace doth much more abound."
He never mentioned tobacco to me again. That was evidence to my mind that that man had received Christ.
The reception of the word is declared to be the reception of Christ. It is by feeding upon the word that unconsciously our lives are changed. We are feeding upon Christ Himself. We cannot explain it, but there is a great simplicity about it. We are in danger of "darkening counsel by words without knowledge," of making it difficult for people to understand how they can approach Christ.
Just an illustration of the relationship between the human and the divine in this matter. The miner can dig the ore, he can wash off the earth from it, but he is powerless to separate the gold from the dross. The fire must do that. And the fire must be hot enough to melt it and separate it.
So the Holy Spirit of God must take us after we surrender, and as we surrender, and by its mighty power, separate sin from the very smallest fiber of our being; from the heart and mind and affections, until we are fully sep- arated from 'sin. Christ gave Himself for our sins, that He might redeem us from this evil world unto Himself, and make us separate; and He only can do that.
P. C. GILBLariT: I am certainly glad for the message that has come to us this morning; and, brethren, my heart responds to it. I know that God has help for His people today, and I think Brother MacGuire has brought great light to us this morning when he told us that one reason why we do not receive more help is because Christ is not real to us.
I believe there is a Physician who will give us help if we are only in an attitude to receive it. Christ, I believe, is willing to do for His people today what He did nineteen hundred years ago,— what He did through His disciples, and what He did in His own person while here on earth.
I believe there is balm in Gilead. I believe the Lord Jesus Christ wants to give this help to us, and desires that we shall receive it. I believe we must receive it in God's way. The great longing of my heart is that God will help me so to yield my life to Him that I may receive this help and this balm, and, under God, be able to en- courage others, that they, too, may receive it.
Fourteen years ago, while in Ohio, I rented a little cottage. I was paying only $5 a month. At the beginning of each month I paid in advance, sending the lady a check.
Two years ago I was in Ohio, at my old home, and a neighbor said, "My sister wants to see you, Mr. Underwood."
"All right, I will drop in."
So I went to see Mrs. Wilcox, and had a pleasant little talk with her. When I was getting ready to leave, she said, "Hold on, Mr. Underwood, I want to show you something."
She stepped to her bookcase and took out a check that I had given her twelve years before. I looked at it; saw it carried my signature, and that her name was on the back of it.
I said, "My lady, haven't you drawn this check?"
I said, "Why, it ought to be good, your name is on it."
"Well," she replied, "when I got that cheek, I put it in my drawer; it was covered with some leaflets, and it was nine years before I found it. I had forgotten all about it."
She sent it to the bank, but I had nothing there then, and it was re- turned to her, with the explanation that Mr. Underwood did have some money when that check was given, but that he hadn't any there now.
Her brother, a justice of the peace, told her that the check was outlawed, and wasn't worth anything, so she hadn't written to me.
I said, "What do you want me to do? pay you this with interest?"
"No," she said, "if you will give me its principal, I will be satisfied."
She continued, " I thought perhaps it was outlawed, and you wouldn't pay it."
I said to the lady, "R. A. Underwood's name is never outlawed."
And, dear friends, when God signs a check or a promise, it never becomes null or void.
Before this meeting closes I want to bear my testimony to the wonderful truths we have been listening to in this meeting, and also in the ministers' meeting, of "Christ in you, the hope of glory." I rejoice this morning in this blessed Jesus and what He has been doing for me. It is a wonderful privilege to be at this Conference — my first since 1905. And when one has been off in the dark regions of Africa and other parts of the world for years, it is a wonderful privilege.
I rejoice this morning in this great message that God has given us, that can save souls from the darkness of heathenism, and that is gathering out jewels to shine in His kingdom. I rejoice that He even found me; and if Christ can save those poor souls, I know that He can save me. I have been trying, brethren, for a long time to make this thing very personal each morning, to settle this question with God, that I am His, that Christ saves me today; and when I close the day, that Christ has saved me from my sins that day.
As Brother MacGuire brought out the thought that when I rise in the morning my body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, that God is dwelling in me, I thought, "It is wonderful." Then when I close the day, the last thoughts are, "My body is the temple of the Holy Ghost." I cannot understand it, but, brethren, I do rejoice in this blessed truth this morning.