by John G. Lake
As a basis of a little talk, I want to quote Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address:
Fourscore and seven years ago, our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But in a larger sense we cannot dedicate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us, the living, rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us, that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion; that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, and for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
This is an introduction to a thought I want to bring to you. I want to call your attention to Daniel’s seventy weeks. These weeks are weeks of years, seven years to a week. Daniel’s sixty-nine weeks, or 483 days, is dated onward from Daniel and ended with the anointing of Jesus at the River of Jordan. We speak of that anointing as the “Christing of Jesus,” when the Holy Ghost from heaven came upon Him. He was then presented to Israel as their Messiah. It required the anointing from heaven to give Him His Messiahship.
Beloved, my soul is dedicated to one purpose, and that is the proclamation of the gospel of the Holy Ghost in our day. If I am left alone in the world as the only voice to declare the full gospel of the Holy Ghost, I will go on declaring it.
Every great movement of God in this world, from the beginning until now, has been an operation of the Holy Ghost. And every fresh introduction of the spirit of man into the life of God has brought a new revelation of Christ and His power to save the world.
Every decline that has followed the history of the Christian church has first had its inception when men began to lie down on the subject of the Holy Ghost. If you want to spell death to an organization that is now alive spiritually, all you have to do is to get them to lie down on the subject of the necessity of the Holy Ghost and the baptism of the Holy Ghost. There will soon be nothing left but a corpse. That is the history of Christianity.
Friends, let us above all else, in the name of Jesus, dedicate ourselves honestly and sincerely to the proclamation of the gospel of the Holy Ghost, of the power of God through the Holy Ghost, to bring into the spirit of man that revelation of Jesus Christ that is essential and final and able to reveal Him as the Son of God.
If that, then, is the one thing to which our souls are dedicated, we will certainly not be slack in our endeavor to seek God for our personal entrance into the life of the Holy Ghost. We will be ready to pray for the baptism of the Holy Ghost. We will be ready to study the Word of God. We will be ready to covet the Holy Ghost and His revelation beyond all else. Out of it come churches. Out of it come preachers. Out of it comes world evangelism. Out of it come high reforms—everything that has its great incentive in the Holy Ghost.
The greatest thing that Jesus Christ Himself could comprehend as a possibility for mankind was to secure for them the divine right to become the recipients of the Holy Ghost. And in order to do that, He was compelled to die and shed His blood that their hearts, through its power, should be cleansed from sin and prepared to become the habitation of God through the Spirit.
Lift up your heads, and lift up your hands, and lift up your hearts toward heaven, and declare to the world, the flesh, the devil, and every opposing force in the world that you stand with Jesus Christ for the necessity of the baptism of the Holy Ghost, and that your soul is dedicated to God to carry the precious message wherever you will and, by the grace of God, to minister its eternal power everywhere where God makes it possible! Amen.