Sermons from February 2021

Sermons from February 2021

Half-hearted Christianity (21 min)

David Vallance preaches on the challenging topic of half-hearted Christianity, using the story of the 2.5 tribes who wanted to stay on the “other side of Jordan” (instead of entering the promised land) as a springboard for his message. Food for thought from Reuben, Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh. Readings: Num 32:1-6, 10-11, 23, Josh 22:1-6, 10-12, 34, 1 Chron 5:23-26. (Message preached in Spring Creek Gospel Hall, Illinois, USA, 2019)

“The same message all these years, but I only saw it now” (34 min)

Ronnie Johnston (1929-2007) tells the remarkable and touching story of his father’s and his own salvation. Ronnie’s Dad was saved through the hymn “Trust and obey”, a hymn he learnt from his children as they sang it on Sunday afternoon walks. But Ronnie didn’t get saved until he was 27. While his Dad used to break bread in Cregagh Street Gospel Hall, Ronnie was 6 streets away playing cards. Ronnie would ‘borrow’ money off his godly father but confessed, “I…

“My Amish religion never gave me any peace” (24 min)

John Miller grew up in an Amish family and community in Pennsylvania, USA. He was baptised and made a commitment to try his hardest to keep the rules of the Amish, but he could never find peace. God brought some people who knew the gospel of the grace of God into John’s life. Through them he obtained a Bible in English. Listen to hear how God revealed Himself to John through the Scriptures and saved a “proud, religious  37 year…

Philip Harding – “Let not your heart be troubled” (27 min)

Philip Harding (1932-2017) grew up in a godly home in South Wales, but in his teen years he learned to gamble, to drink and to dance, though he kept up a respectable image and continued to attend church. But God intervened in his life in January 1951, when a stranger approached young Philip and his friends and challenged them about their sin and danger of judgement. God used this incident to convict Philip of his need of salvation. He was…

The Glory that Follows Justification (65 min)

PART 5 of 5 – David Gilliland preaches the last message in his series on “justification by faith”. He expounds the glorious 8th chapter of Romans – a chapter full of glory – using the following headings: the fitness for glory, the family of glory, the fulness of glory, the freedom of glory, the focus of glory, the fears for glory, and the freeness of glory. He closes by looking at 4 questions: the power question, the prosecution question, the…

“I tried, for a whole year, to keep the Sermon on the Mount!” (48 min)

Sam Jennings (1928- ) relates the story of his conversion to Christ on 29th November 1944. Sam’s father was a brilliant violinist, but sadly also a violent alcoholic. In his youth, Sam tried to live by the Sermon on the Mount, but failed miserably. As a teenager he developed a foul mouth and was considered “the vilest person” in the bakery where he worked. But God saved his brother Rowan, and Sam ended up hearing the gospel preached by none…

“I cannot go for that operation until I’m saved” (49 min)

Mr Sam McBride grew up in rural Co Armagh hearing the gospel from a young age. He always knew he needed salvation, but let himself drift into adulthood without it. A serious spinal injury in the summer of 1949 left him needing a major operation. Fearing complications, Sam McBride resolved “I cannot go for that operation until I have the matter of my salvation settled.” Listen to hear how he was finally saved on 17th Feb 1952. Mr McBride preached…

Will Penfold – Kings who Did Right (26 min)

Will Penfold (1922-2001) was saved in May 1933 in Ruislip, Middlesex. After a few years in the south east of England, he moved to Bicester in 1964. The assembly in Bicester commenced a year later in 1965 in Will and his wife Ruth’s house in Wendlebury, moving to the current site in Hebron Gospel Hall in 1968. Will partnered in business with Colin Stewart, and they partnered in the oversight and teaching of the assembly as well. Here’s a recording…

The Godliness that Accompanies Justification (59 min)

PART 4 of 5 – David Gilliland preaches on justification’s twin: sanctification. Chs 5-8 of Romans explain how we should live in the light of our justification. The fact that we have been cleared of all guilt doesn’t mean we can now live as we like. Quite the reverse; godly, holy living is what follows. David expounds the 2 men (order), 2 masters (obligation), 2 marriages (occupation) and 2 minds (operation) that the apostle Paul introduces as he outlines the…

The Gospel among the Hutterite Colonies (31 min)

Jack Gould tells the wonderful story of the progress of the gospel among the Hutterite colonies of Manitoba, Canada. Hutterites are religious group who share a common European ancestry with the Mennonites and Amish, differing with them in that they believe in sharing their possessions in common and thus living in ‘colonies’. Jack Gould has been labouring among the Hutterites for a number of years and here tells the thrilling story of souls being saved and lives being transformed. (Report…

VIDEO – Albert’s Hull’s Testimony of Salvation (34 min)

In November 2000, Albert Hull (1936-2015) told the story of his conversion, during a gospel message he preached at the Stark Road Gospel hall annual conference in Livonia, Michigan U.SA. Saved in 1957, listening to the Word preached through the open windows of a small and struggling series of gospel meetings, Albert ever after revelled in the grace of God, and rarely missed an opportunity to tell of it with enthusiasm and joy. A longer version of Mr Hull’s testimony…

Andrew Bergsma – The early days in Holland (22 min)

Andrew Bergsma (1930-2013), whose whole family was “reached through a rice pudding”, tells the thrilling story of the early days of gospel labour in the Netherlands in the 1960’s where large numbers attended gospel meetings, souls were saved and assemblies planted. Andrew was a true evangelist, with an evangelist’s heart, full of infectious gospel fervour and willing to labour both on and off the platform. You will be stirred as you listen to the stories of these early days. (Report…

“I can’t go on like this: I’ve got to get saved tonight” (26 min)

David Hutchinson grew up in a Christian family and knew the Scriptures from young age. When he reached the 6th form at School he felt drawn to the world…but God overruled David’s choice to neglect the gospel and brought him back to reality. At 16 he faced up to his need of salvation. Listen to hear how he found deliverance. (Testimony given in Bicester 29th Oct 2017)

“It wasn’t about me and what I did” (22 min)

Tim Cawte tells of his conversion one Canadian winter at the age of 13. Knowing he was a sinner who needed to be saved, his main problem was, “How can I ever know for sure that I am saved?” He made a number of attempts at being saved, but every time the doubts kept coming back as strong as ever. He was finally saved when he came to an end of himself and rested alone on the person and finished…

“All I know is, my sins were taken care of at Calvary!”(28 min)

Marcel Lasalle grew up in a devout Roman Catholic family in the 1950’s in Montreal, Canada. The Mass, the rosary, confession; Marcel did it all. But he had no peace. Eventually he settled down into an ungodly life of nominal adherence to religion on the one hand, but the pleasures of sin on the other. Then God, in a most remarkable way, sovereignly intervened in his life to bring the light of the gospel to him, and he discovered, in…

“I thought I had it all” (39 min)

Born in 1933, Bill Lavery turned his back on the gospel as a teenager and “took his journey into a far country” seeking pleasure. Bill thought he “had it all”, as drinking, gambling and ballroom dancing filled his spare time. After marriage, he emigrated to the USA (in 1961), settling in Michigan. He secured a good job and enjoyed a “cocktail party” lifestyle into his early thirties. But God began to work in his life. Numerous people had been praying…

The Hidden Years of the Carpenter of Nazareth (21 min)

Harold Paisley (1924-2015) preaches an unusual word on the hidden years of Christ in Nazareth in 4 parts: the hidden years 1. foreshadowed, 2. foretold, 3. factual, and 4. fruitful. A touching and richly devotional look at the person of Christ that will warm your heart. Readings: Exod 16:33, Isa 50:4, Luke 2:51-52, Heb 4:14-16. (Message preached at the Toronto Easter Conference, 24th March 1989) Further listening: Harold Paisley’s testimony Harold Paisley 50 Years in the Lord’s work Video of…

“A basketball game or a gospel meeting?” (22 min)

Scott Hayes from Iowa, USA, relates how as a proud 17-year-old basketball and motorcross enthusiast he was first awakened to his need of a Saviour through the tragic death of an uncle. Scott was brought to Christ during a series of gospel meetings in which around 40 others were also saved in Stout, Iowa, under the preaching of Albert Hull and Gaius Goff in the 1970’s (Testimony given in Bicester on 17th March 2013)

Bible Reading – The Peace Offering (64 min)

PART 3 of 3 – In the last of a series of 3 Bible Readings on the sweet savour offerings, Sandy Higgins opens up “the peace offering”, followed by a discussion verse by verse through Leviticus 3 and 7. The other Bible Readings in this series, on Leviticus Chs 1 and 2, were taken by Norman Crawford and Harold Paisley respectively. Mr Higgins read: Lev 3:1-17, 7:11-32. (Recorded at the Toronto Easter Conference, Friday March 29th 1991) (Image above: the…

“I fell 20 feet onto a concrete floor” (25 min)

Joe Potter, from Canada, relates the story of his conversion to Christ. Joe nearly died from a fall at 6 years old that broke his femur. But that didn’t stop Joe’s parents taking him to gospel meetings, in a full body cast! At various times in his childhood, God spoke to Joe, but he didn’t get saved until in his early teens. A helpful testimony for children brought up in Christian families. Readings: Luke 15:3-7, Rom 5:6 (Testimony given 14th…

The Grace which Bestows Justification (61 min)

PART 3 of 5 – David Gilliland preaches on how a person can be justified. Christ has died and risen, but how can a condemned guilty sinner receive the blessing of justification and be declared righteous? By faith alone. This is the wonder of divine grace. And this is what Romanism calls anathema! A vital message on the central issue of how a person can be made right with God. A comprehensive message covering multiple fundamental issues. Readings: Rom 3:27-4:5,…

Growing Old Gracefully (37 min)

David West preaches a weighty and encouraging message on the value, virtue and veneration of old age. He reminds his audience that how we grow old is more important than how old we grow.  Readings: Prov 4:18, 16:31, 20:29, 23:22, Ecc 11:7-12:7. (Message preached at the Lurgan Conference 2016)

“Tell him I’m not in” (9 min)

The fascinating story of how a Christian woman in an office refused to tell a lie for her boss, and how God used that incident to speak to her colleague, a Mr. Jim Walmsely. That same lady afterwards asked Jim to come to a gospel meeting. In the process of time the troubled young man found salvation on 16th May 1947. Mr Jim Walmsley was subsequently called of God to the land of Venezuela, where he has served the Lord…

Uel Ussher – My Conversion, and Call to Venezuela (49 min)

To leave the UK and head to Venezuela in the 1960’s was a big move for a 25 year old young man and his wife. How were Uel and Rae Ussher to know that this was really the will of God for them? How could they be sure? Listen to the wonderful way God is able to guide those who are open and ready to obey His call to serve, even in far off lands. Uel Ussher tells of his…

How to Listen to Ministry (10 min)

Dan Shutt opened a conference some years ago with a sobering word of ministry on “how we should listen to ministry”. When the Word of God is opened and expounded, we need God to speak to us; and our attitude when listening can be summed up in the question in Matt 26:22, “Lord, is it I?” Dan was saved under the preaching of Archie Stewart, and he references him in this helpful message on listening to the voice of God…

Is the Ministry of Women Public? (61 min)

PART 6 of 6 – In the final part of a series of 6 messages on “Questions about the assembly”, Tom Bentley (1924-2011) answers the question, “Is the ministry of women public?” He takes up the three main passages about this issue in the New Testament and then divides his remarks up into three sections: women in the creation of God, women in the revelation of God, and women in the administration of God. Readings: 1 Cor 11:1-16, 14:26, 34-40,…

The Ground that Secures Justification (58 min)

PART 2 of 5 – David Gilliland expounds the pivotal passage in Romans 3:19-26 and outlines 10 points in connection with God’s plan to justify sinners on the ground of the work of Christ. He explains the crucial doctrine of propitiation, whereby God’s justice has satisfied through the appeasing of His wrath in the sacrifice of Christ. This is the ground, the basis, of justification. (Message preached in Ballywatermoy, 2005) Messages in this series: The guilt that requires justification (Audio)…

Bible Reading – The Meal Offering (63 min)

PART 2 of 3 – In the second of a series of 3 Bible Readings on the sweet savour offerings, Harold Paisley opens up “the meal offering”, followed by a discussion verse by verse through Leviticus 2. The other Bible Readings in this series, on Leviticus Chs 1 and 3, were taken by Norman Crawford and Sandy Higgins respectively. Mr Paisley read: Lev 2:1-16, 6:14-12. (Recorded at the Toronto Easter Conference, Friday March 29th 1991) (Image above: the brazen altar…

Sam Ferguson – “There is a lad here” (26 min)

Sam Ferguson (1927-2017) grew up in a godly family in a country area of Northern Ireland. Attending the meetings of the local assembly often involved a 13-mile bicycle ride, such was the family’s commitment! Moving to Belfast, Sam was saved at the age of 15 during WW2. Later, once married to Pearl (Jackson) and living in Bangor with their family, Sam was commended in 1970 to serve the Lord full-time. He was a much used evangelist and God blessed his…

Is Occasional Fellowship Scriptural? (62 min)

PART 5 of 6 – In the fifth of a series of 6 messages on “Questions about the assembly”, Tom Bentley (1924-2011) answers the question, “Is occasional fellowship scriptural?” Taking up the subject of assembly reception, Mr Bentley asks two pertinent sub-questions: 1. Who should be received? and 2. To what is a person received? A helpful examination, from an experienced missionary and Bible teacher, of an often contentious issue. Readings: Acts 9:26-30, Rom 16:1-2, 1 Cor 16:1-4, 2 Cor…

Colin Stewart – The Lordship of Christ (36 min)

Colin Stewart (1933-2014) grew up in a Christian family. His parents were in fellowship in the assembly meeting in Abernethy, Scotland, which meant the young Colin Stewart grew up under the ministry of the poet and hymn writer Isaac Ewan. Saved in his 20’s, Colin went into the RAF where he stood boldly for Christ. After his marriage to Marion, he spent a few years in Perth before moving to Bicester in 1968, coming into fellowship in Hebron Gospel Hall…

“So, you’ve chosen the world” (15 min)

Tommy Wright relates the story of his conversion to Christ in 1952. As is common with young people, on entering his teens, Tommy began to drift away from interest in the gospel and tried to get out of “going to meetings”. But the godly influence of his mother prevailed. With tears in her eyes one day she said to Tommy “So, you’ve chosen the world”. Listen to hear how God used this in Tommy’s awakening and salvation. (Testimony given on…

Bible Reading – The Burnt Offering (65 min)

PART 1 of 3 – In the first of a series of 3 Bible Readings on the sweet savour offerings, Norman Crawford opens up “the burnt offering”, followed by a discussion verse by verse through Leviticus 1. The other Bible Readings in this series, on Leviticus Chs 2 and 3, were taken by Harold Paisley and Sandy Higgins respectively (Recorded at the Toronto Easter Conference, Friday March 29th 1991) (Image above: the brazen altar partly covered, from a book by…

The Guilt that Demands Justification (57 min)

PART 1 of 5 – David Gilliland opens a series of messages on the fundamental and vital topic of “justification by faith” in the epistle of Paul to the Romans, with a look at the need for it brought about by human guilt. He works his way through Chs 1 and 2 and into the first half of Ch 3 tracing the scope, the seriousness, the standard, the statement, the sentence, and the silence of the guilt of humanity. This…

“I rebelled against my Christian upbringing” (21 min)

Aaron Colgan relates the story of how God saved him as a teenager back in the 1980’s. Though brought up hearing the Word of God, Aaron rebelled against the gospel and took up with the pleasures of the world, living for a number of years with no thought about his soul’s salvation. But God spoke to him once more and brought him to faith in His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Readings: Eph 2:8-9, Rev 21:7 (Testimony given Saturday 30th…

James Last – “Grace be with you all” (35 min)

James Last (1911-1985) from Suffolk, England, was saved as a young lad. He began preaching in his teens and was used of the Lord, during and after WW2, to see a new assembly planted in Coltishall, Norfolk. Some years after the homecall of his first wife Gertrude (Ribbans), James married Elizabeth (Munro) and moved to Scotland, being in fellowship in Bannockburn for the rest of his life and continuing to be used both in ministry and gospel. Mr Last paid…

Is the Local Assembly Democratic? (57 min)

PART 4 of 6 – In the fourth of a series of 6 messages on “Questions about the assembly”, Tom Bentley (1924-2011) answers the question, “Is the local assembly democratic?” After looking at various forms of “church government” used in Christendom today, Mr Bentley spells out divine order as it relates to scriptural local assembly government and leadership. Readings: Acts 20:25-28, 1 Thess 5:12-14, 1 Tim 3:1-4, Heb 13:7, 17, 24, 1 Pet 5:1-4 (Message preached in Whitehouse Gospel Hall,…

“People thought I was saved, but I knew I wasn’t” (19 min)

Desmond Gilpin grew up in Bangor, Co Down, with a knowledge of the Bible and the gospel: but until he was 35 years old, that was all he had. He says people thought he was saved, though he had never been born again. On 5th March 1979 he came to a crisis point, where he could no longer continue pretending. Desmond finally found peace at 4.00am through faith in Christ and His finished work (Photo above: Bangor harbour).

Are you waiting for a feeling? (19 min)

Many people are not saved because, consciously or unconsciously, they are waiting for some kind of feeling. Until they get this feeling, they think they can’t know they are saved. Peter Orasuk (1948-2005) preaches helpfully on this topic from the story of a man in the Bible who trusted his feelings instead of a spoken word. What are you going to go with: your feelings, or God’s word? Readings: Gen 27:5-10, 18-23, John 5:24.

“If you are not saved, what is all this worth?” (19 min)

Sandy Higgins’s ancestors came to the USA from Italy and Ireland. There, for the first time, they heard the gospel, and some were converted. That meant that Sandy was brought up in a godly home, where the gospel was preached. But hearing the gospel all of his life seemed to make salvation difficult for Sandy. While in medical training one day, the thought struck him “If you are not saved, what is all this worth?” Sandy went through 6 weeks…

Is the Local Assembly Autonomous? (63 min)

PART 3 of 6 – In the third of a series of 6 messages on “Questions about the assembly”, Tom Bentley (1924-2011) answers the question, “Is the local assembly autonomous?” The opposite of autonomy is confederation; which is what sadly can be seen in various parts of the world as assemblies centralise to form confederacies and denominations. Mr Bentley ably teaches the vital principle of autonomy under 3 headings: the truth of, the tests of, and the testimony of autonomy.…

“You’ll either end in jail or on the gallows” (41 min)

Jeffrey Harrison (1909-1990) grew up in a strict home in a slum area of north west England. His life as a teenager was such that his mother warned him, “You’ll either end up in jail or on the gallows”. Shoplifting, fighting, gambling and mischief of all kinds marked the life of young Harrison. But the Holy Spirit worked in his life, convicting him of his sin and of his danger of perishing in hell. When he got a job on…

Lou Swaan – Preaching Christ in the Netherlands (24 min)

Lou Swaan (1930-2017) often visited us in Bicester and left a great impression on us with his warm-hearted gospel fervour. Lou moved to Canada in 1948 from the Netherlands and was saved in Vancouver at the age of 21. He found his way to a local assembly by conviction from the truth of Scripture. Answering the call of the Holy Spirit, through the instrumentality of Andrew Bergsma to take the gospel to the Netherlands, Lou headed back to the land…