First Edition Upgrades and Reduced Price Christian EBooks
‘All proceeds go toward Children’s Charities and our Children’s Home Project in our area’
Website News by Pastor Steven Birnie
Reduced Price – Our EBookshop has been Online now for over six years and it’s grown and changed over that time as technology has become ever more sophisticated. Upgrades are now an essential aspect of the yearly cycle of operating a Website and so too are the products supplied so we’ll be continuing that process of moving forward by upgrading some of our more Aged EBooks and Audios to keep them up to date and easier to use. This is to continue striving for maximum quality and reader enjoyment so as of today, we’ll be working through The First Principles Teaching EBooks, The Principles of the Gathering and our most popular publication, the 80 year old Seen and Heard. When the updates are completed, they’ll be ready to be released on Amazon for Kindle Readers like the First Three EBooks of The Tribulation Soldier Series.
The teachings and verses will remain the same though as all of the texts are based on the unchangeable Word of God so we’ll be taking nothing away from the years it took to put these teachings together. However, we’ll be adding much more info’ and images bringing them up to 2016 times. We do hope you enjoy the publications when they come but in the meantime, we’ll be reducing the prices of these First Edition Packages as we upgrade them one by one so you can visit our Website at www.christianbacktobasics.com to pick up a reduced price Christian EBook. All proceeds go towards Children’s Charities and our project of opening a Christian Children’s Home in our local area. Bless you and please find below for your enjoyment, an excerpt from Seen and Heard.
Author and Pastor Steven Birnie
‘Seen and Heard’ Preview – Chapter 23
‘The Hopeman Revival’
Author Rev. James M’Kendrick
“……..Hopeman is a large fishing village between Burghead and Lossiemouth. Mr McFarlane had gone there for two weeks, and had seen much blessing. He had to go to Avoch, intending to return to Hopeman later, but circumstances prevented, so he wrote to me asking me to take his place. He assured me that during his visit many had been saved, and that there was every sign of an increased spiritual revival, and that he would come and join me as soon as possible. I went and found that all he said was true. At least about twenty people had been truly saved, and most of them were longing for the salvation of others. Three young men especially, who were companions, were showing much zeal and no little ability, and God was using their efforts to awaken sinners. When I arrived on the scene, it was to find a prepared people longing for salvation. The services were held in a large Granary, which at this season of the year was always empty. About four hundred people could be packed into it, and it was filled to its utmost capacity the first night. The singing was the best I ever heard by a congregation. I did not propose an after-meeting, being tired with my long journey that day from Fort George, but I spoke with many as they passed out, asking them if they had been saved during Mr McFarlane’s visit.
At my lodgings we sat and talked till about 11.30, when there was a knock at the door. I heard my host say when he opened it, “Oh it’s you Sandy, come in”. The man asked if Mr M’Kendrick was in bed. “Oh no”, replied my host, “he’s here”, “well I want to talk to him. I went home from the meeting and went to bed, but I couldn’t sleep, so I just got up and I’ve hurried over here to speak to him”. I heard all this, and called out to him to come inside. He came in looking very distressed. I asked, “What do you wish to say to me?”. “Well”, he replied, “when I was going out of the Granary, at the top of the stairs you asked me if I was saved, and I said yes, but I knew I was telling a lie, I only said that to get past you. I’m a miserable man and thought to myself what a wicked thing it was to say God had saved me when he had done nothing of the kind. Oh to think I was telling a lie about God!”
His grief was great, and the penitential tears rolled down his face. It was with great difficulty I could persuade him that God would forgive him and save him, for his sin seemed so awful, and he kept repeating, “Oh to think I told a lie about God”. Sandy however was truly saved that night, and he became the most devoted Christian. There lived in Hopeman a most remarkable Christian named Archie McPherson, known and respected by all in the district. When God saved him he could not read one word, but he soon learned to read the bible, which was his one book, and the Holy Spirit his only guide and interpreter. He rapidly became a most earnest, able Christian preacher. Evangelical ministers from various fishing centres were glad to get Archie to take their pulpit, and in every place crowds would flock to hear him. He was not only a Godly man, but he was a man of God, with backbone and grit. The minister of the church with which he was connected to was a kind of moderate, who did not understand either the theory or the practice of the principles of Grace. Many a straight talk Archie had given him about his pointless preaching, and its lack of the doctrine of atonement and substitution. Archie was the principle Elder in the church, and the minister found him a thorn in the flesh.
At length matters came such to pass that Archie warned him that he persisted in a certain line of teaching he would rebuke him publicly. If the minister though this was an idle threat then he had mistaken the man. In the middle of sermon one forenoon, Archie stood and said, “Didn’t I warn you repeatedly against such preaching, and that if you persisted I would rebuke you publicly?. In the name of God I utter my protest against all such teaching, as I believe it can have only a soul damning effect upon any who believe it”. As may well be imagined, this created a scene. Some approved of Archie’s action, other condemned it while women rushed out of church in excitement, and the service ended amid confusion. Next day the minister and two like-minded Elders visited Archie, asking a withdrawal of his words and an apology, but Archie only added to what he had said in the church, and after much disputation, in which others took part, the matter ended with Archie challenging the minister to bring his teaching before the Elders in Elgin, and he would meet him there. The minister however declined the challenge, and Archie ceased church attendance for a considerable time. Eventually he returned, on condition that such preaching would not be repeated.
All went well for some months, till one day, preaching from the text “Without holiness no man shall see the Lord”, the minister said, ” Here is the way to God, by your holiness, by your holy living, and not, as some would teach, by the saviour’s death”. In a flash Archie was on his feet, crying out, “How dare you sir, say such things in my presence!”. And for about ten minutes Archie denounced his errors, providing all he said from the bible, and finished by saying, “I call God to witness, and this congregation also, that I have done all I can in public and in private to prevent this preaching in our midst”. Then turning to his family of grown up sons, four in number, he said, “rise and let us leave this place in protest. Let us wipe the dust off our shoes as a testimony against it”. This he literally did and marched out of the church, followed by his family and others. All this happened about twelve months before our arrival. Archie had hired the granary, and was about to open it for services when McFarlane arrived. We soon recognised a faithful man of God, and guided by his advice, we carried on our gospel operations in Hopeman, and there, as in other places, the work of God increased daily. Never a day passed without some being saved. The Granary and all its stairs could not accommodate the people, but there was a splendid vacant piece of ground adjoining, amphi-theatre in shape, and there was erected a platform. The weather was perfect for outdoor meetings, and people crowded to our services. I had seen in other places fishing operations given up, but nowhere else had I seen such an absolute abandonment of all other occupations for the gospel of Christ in Hopeman.
Mr McFarlane had by this time joined me, and for four weeks Hopeman was in the throes of a great revival. The Holy Spirit possessed the place – the wail of the convicted and the anxious – the praise and rejoicing of the saved were heard throughout the entire village by day and by night. People flocked from Cummingston, from Burghead, from all around. These, with the people of the village, would be at our open air meetings. As I have said, the days were perfect, and the people could sit out in the light, sandy soil without risk of being damp or cold. The evenings were so calm that many heard the singing over a mile away. When we were inviting those who were anxious to be saved to come to the Granary, the scene was indescribable, people could not have been more anxious to get out of a sinking ship or a burning house than they were to get into the Granary. Many had there clothes badly torn in the struggle to get up the stair, and there till early morning all who could help the anxious were busily engaged.
Hopeman was one of those fishing villages where drunkenness, with accompanying evil, had a good many slaves. Strangely enough, two of these victims had the same name, these two were looked upon as hopeless, but when God’s spirit is working, daily surprises occur, and it was a surprise to all when the news spread that Jock M was converted. A few days sufficed to satisfy the most sceptical that a divine work had been wrought in the man, and as he stood up to tell how God had saved him, the big tears rolling down his face, few dry eyes could have been found in that great crowd. He made his appeal with great force, saying, “You all know what I was, the sort of life I lived, and if God has saved me, none need despair”. Without trying to be humorous, he went on to say, “All you good people need to be saved. I often thought, if I was just like some of you good people, that I didn’t drink or swear, I would be alright, but now I can see from the bible that you good people are wrong too. Our own goodness will not save us, we need to be saved by Jesus Christ our saviour”. he speedily developed into an active, earnest witness for the saviour. When we were leaving, this man said to me, “I wish I had something to give you, but I haven’t, but I would like if you would accept this silver chain”. I protested, saying he would need it, but he assured me he never wore it, but would like me to have it. I accepted the gift, and wore it ever since.
His namesake was a more notorious character. I had seen him at several meeting, and had reason to believe his lost condition was becoming very real to him. I called at his home, and found it as I would have expected, and then I left with the joy of seeing him truly born again, his life from that hour giving full proof of his change. When I went and told our friend Archie that Jock M, of whom he despaired, was truly saved, he replied, “If Jock is saved, I would not be surprised to hear the devil next”. Mr McFarlane and I were walking towards a wood one day, and met four women coming home with a bundle of sticks they had gathered. We began talking about the meetings, and found that most of them had been saved. Looking at one who seemed uncomfortable, I asked, “Are you also saved?”. In a halting way she said yes. But it lacked the ring of sincerity. I urged upon her the necessity of being sure about such an important matter.
That night after the service we invited the anxious up to the Granary, the place was packed as usual. I heard a great commotion outside, and a man came to me and said, “A woman that can’t get any further up the stair is weeping and screaming, and says she must see you”. I went to the stair head, and I could hear her shouting, “Oh God forgive me, I told I lie, oh where’s the man I told a lie to. It was M’Kendrick I told the lie to”. They cleared the stairs for her to get up, and here I recognised the woman who had told me she was saved. She cried, “Oh Mr M’Kendrick, will you pray God to forgive me, I told you a lie, I told you I was saved and I wasn’t, Oh God forgive me!”. Her distress was deep and her penitence real, she seemed far too excited to be spoken to. I left a friend beside her till she was composed, and then it was an easy matter to lead her to the saviour.
These few cases will suffice to show to what extent God’s Holy Spirit was working in Hopeman. About the three hundred professed to have experienced the saving change at that time. Mr McFarlane was able to repeatedly visit Hopeman later on, and to see with the greatest joy the consistent lives of those who were converted. The month of May had begun, all the fisher folk were getting ready for the summer herring fishing. Mr McFarlane and I went home, after eight months in incessant labour in addressing meetings, and conversing with the anxious everyday and at all hours, we were thoroughly worn out. But oh, so happy to have finished one of the most successful labours of our lives. About 1600 people professed to be saved in those eight months. I left Archie a happy man. He often said, “I am like old Simeon. I can now say Lord let thy servant depart in peace, for my eyes have seen thy salvation. I have now lived and long prayed for, Hopeman blessed……”