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25/12/2010 / Test All Things

A Letter To Mr Hoadley – March 4th, 1862

Dear Friend, Mr. Hoadley.

Amid all my labors for the profit of the church of God, the various trials and temptations with which I am exercised, and the numerous enemies, internal and external, against whom I have to contend, it is a sweet satisfaction to find that the Lord is pleased to bless to any of His people what I send forth in His holy name. However the Lord’s people may differ from each other in station, education, abilities, and other mere natural circumstances, yet are they all blessedly united in one Spirit to the Son of God. Therefore they love the same truth, feel the same power, live the same life of faith, and eventually die to enjoy in substance what they have tasted in shadow. In writing the Address for this year, (Gospel Standard) my desire was to edify and profit the church of the living God. This I knew could only be done by the power of God resting upon my pen; for in myself I am a poor, blind, ignorant, destitute, and unfeeling wretch, who cannot even think a good thought, much less write a good word or perform a good action. It is a mercy then that, not only you, but others also, have felt a measure of sweetness and savor in what then dropped from my pen. To the Lord be ascribed all the glory.

I was sure that you would find Mr. Brown an honest, gracious, and experimental man. In giving him out to preach here, or speaking of him, I have called him sometimes “Good Mr. Brown.” He has gone through a good deal of trial and trouble, and this, by the grace of God, has softened and meekened his spirit.

I have often thought that those who are placed at the head of a little Cause in the country are put into a very trying situation, when they are brought to see the emptiness of all profession and preaching which do not stand in the power of God. It is to me a grievous sign in the present day, that there are so few men raised up who preach the Gospel with the Holy Spirit sent down from heaven. There is no lack of ministers, such as they are, and men too who hold the truth, at least in the letter. But some hold it merely in the head, and others, it is to be feared, in unrighteousness. But oh, how few are enabled to preach it feelingly and experimentally under the savor and blessed unction of God the Holy Spirit. The Lord seems taking away His servants. You have lost within about a year four in your own county—Mr. Vinall, Mr. Crouch, Mr. Cowper, and poor old Mr. Pitcher. Oh that the Lord would raise up men who know the truth, love the truth, preach the truth, and live the truth!

The Lord bless you and keep you.

Yours in Gospel bonds,
J. C. P.

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