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Harold Hunt



I cannot tell for certain when I first received an impression that I must preach. I only know that when I was a small boy, I knew that someday I must assume this awesome responsibility. When I first realized a hope in Christ Jesus, I united with the Missionary Baptists. I only remained a member with them for a short time. After a while, I moved my membership to another body of people, who like to refer to themselves as Primitive Baptists. But, in doctrine and practice, they were nearer Freewill Baptists than they were to anybody else I can think of. They are arminian in doctrine; they have Sunday schools and instrumental music; they have revivals for the purpose of saving souls for heaven; and some of them have the notion that a person can fall finally away and be eternally lost after he has been born again. It was after I joined those good, but thoroughly confused, people that I first endeavored to preach. I preached for them for several years before I discovered the truth of salvation by grace. I had met a brother from the Chattanooga Church. He and I discussed what Primitive Baptists believed. Being with a body of people who called themselves Primitive Baptists, I thought I was one; but, when I began to compare our doctrine with the doctrine that this brother advocated, I saw that we were poles apart. After we concluded our conversation, I went back home intending to find enough scriptures to completely refute the doctrine of predestination, studied my Bible, looking for verses which say point blank that it was up to the individual whether he went to heaven or not. I was able to find several verses which I thought said that, in a general way; but, I was never satisfied, either then or before, with generalities about anything. I wanted something that spelled it out, clearly and plainly. I went to all of those texts which I had used to preach conditional salvation, looking for the one that would spell out the arminian position, word for word, clearly and logically.

But, as I examined those old proof texts, one by one they failed me in my quest. Not one of them would say what I wanted it to say. While it became increasingly evident, that I was not going to find even one text that said what I wanted

it to say, I was finding texts scattered all over the Bible that stated just exactly the doctrine I was trying to disprove.

Discovering the doctrine of election was the happiest moment of my life. For a long time, if anybody within speaking distance of me, I wanted to know, "Have you heard? Have you heard about predestination? Have you heard that all the elect are sure of eternal heaven?" I had just heard the good news, and I wanted everybody to know about it! Becoming convinced that the doctrine of predestination was the truth, I began to preach that doctrine among the churches with whom I was affiliated; it became evident that they did not have the same that I did in discovering that

God had chosen a people. Before long, I realized that I could never again be happy where I was. I had joined those people by letter from a Missionary Baptist church. I left them and went by letter to a Progressive Primitive Baptist church. I was pastor of that church for two years. For a while I was happy. I had found a people who loved the doctrine salvation by grace as much as I did, and I could preach it just as earnestly as I wanted to and they would bask in the joys of it. They were precious people I still have a warm place in my heart for them.

But, it was not long, before the practice of the churches became too burdensome for me to endure. I came to see that there was no Bible warrant for instrumental music and Sunday schools. I saw that those who believe in salvation by grace have no business belonging to lodges that teach salvation by works without grace. I offered myself to the Primitive Baptist Church at Knoxville, the first Sunday in January 1963. The brethren asked me when I wanted to be baptized I told them that I had brought my clothes and I wanted to be baptized as soon as we could get in the water. I had waited so long for valid baptism did not want to wait another day. Elder J. L. Wolfenbargerbaptized me that afternoon.

After I came into the church, I discovered I had never known friendship, so rich, and full, and deep, as there was to be found in the church. It is no wonder that members of the Primitive Baptist Church say that Primitive Baptists are the most wonderful people on Earth.

larry heldman  

Elder James Compton (1905 - 2007)
Elder James Compton was the original founder of the 'Gospel of Grace Tape Supply.' His collection of tapes began as he traveled to Church meetings and Associations recording sermons on Reel to Reel. He has maintained this library of sermons faithfully over the years and are now the foundation of PB Sermons. org. This web site is dedicated to Elder James Compton (1905 - 2007)