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    3 TEEN-AGE PREACHER

    The neighbor for whom I was working gave me a vest and a pair of trousers, partly worn; but as he was a man much taller than I, these garments, after cutting seven inches off the trousers, were far from being a nice fit. As a substitute for a dress coat, my brother had given me a double-breasted overcoat, the skirt of which had been cut off. With this curious outfit and the $1.00, I decided to go into some area where I was unknown and try to preach. If I failed, my friends would not know it; if I succeeded, I would take that as evidence it was my duty to preach.MML 11.1

    One day Caleb Broughton came to me and asked what I thought of doing that winter. I had longed for some way to open to let my feelings be known, but I did not dare say anything for fear I was mistaken. I replied, “I have thought the Lord wanted me to preach, but perhaps I’m mistaken.”MML 11.2

    “Thank the Lord, Brother John!” he exclaimed. “I’ve been watching you for a long time, and it seems to me that it is your duty to preach. I’ll do anything I can to help you.” He then gave me a $3.00 bill, my first gift for such a purpose. This opened the matter to other Adventists, most of whom agreed with the idea of my preaching.MML 11.3

    Just after Christmas, 1848, I went by train to Rochester, walked 12 miles to Adams Basin, spent the night at my brother’s, then walked to Kendall Corners where I knew not a soul in the place. With $5.00 worth of books which had been given me to sell and use the proceeds, I neared the place, lifting my heart to God that He would open the way.MML 11.4

    “Can you tell me where any Adventists live in this village?” I asked a man standing beside a house.MML 11.5

    “Yes,” he replied. “There are Millerites in this house by the name of Thompson.”MML 11.6

    When I introduced myself as an Adventist preacher, they welcomed me heartily but eyed me curiously. I feared they would ask how long I had been preaching, but they did not. They embarrassed me, however, when they asked me to take off my overcoat, for I had to tell them it was the only coat I had on.MML 11.7

    I went to the Baptist preacher and to the trustees of the Baptist church and secured it for three evenings, then gave my appointment for January 2nd, in the school and in the post office. Soon it was going around that a little boy was going to preach.MML 12.1

    In the evening I found the church filled to capacity. I sang, prayed, and sang again. I spoke on the subject of the fall of man. Instead of being embarrassed as I feared I would be, the blessing of God came upon me and I spoke freely. The next morning I was told that there were seven ministers present the night before.MML 12.2

    The next evening the place was crowded again. I suppose what drew them was curiosity to hear a beardless boy preach, for I was not quite seventeen. At the close of my sermon the Baptist preacher arose and stated that on the next evening a series of singing classes would begin, so my meetings would have to close. Then a Mr. Thompson (son of the man with whom I lodged) stood and said, “Mr. Loughborough, this singing school has been planned for the purpose of closing your meetings. I live in a school district five miles south of here. We have a large schoolhouse, and I am one of the trustees. We have consulted over the matter, and invite you to come and hold meetings there as long as you wish. My house is nearby, and you are welcome to stay with me.” I thanked him heartily and said, “Please circulate my appointment to speak in your schoolhouse tomorrow evening.”MML 12.3

    The next day the Baptist minister called at the home of a family who were interested in my lectures. About a score of neighbors had come in to ask what he thought of the meetings. He replied, “Get that boy to come here and I will use him up in two minutes.” So the head of the house sent his boy for me saying, “Come over to our house for dinner right away.”MML 12.4

    As soon as I was seated in the room where the neighbors had gathered, the door opened from the cabinet shop in the front of the building, and in came the Baptist minister. I had been fearing to meet ministers, so I secretly lifted my heart to God.MML 12.5

    The minister began, “Well, you had quite a hearing last evening.” “Yes, and they seemed much interested,” I said. He replied, “They were probably curious to hear a boy preach, but did I understand you to say last night that the soul is not immortal?” I answered, “I said so. I don’t know how you understood me.” He then asked, “But what do you do with the text that says ‘These go into everlasting punishment, the death that never dies.’?” I was surprised and said, “I don’t know of any such scripture. Half of your quotation is in the Bible, and the other half from the Methodist hymnal.”MML 12.6

    With much earnestness he insisted, “I tell you what I quoted is in the Bible! It’s in the 25th chapter of Revelation.” I replied, “I guess you mean the 25th chapter of Matthew. Half of your text is there. It says of the wicked that they will go into everlasting punishment.” “Oh yes,” he agreed. “That’s alright, but the text I quoted is in the 25th chapter of Revelation.” “Then it is about three chapters outside of the Bible,” I said, “for there are only twenty-two chapters in Revelation.”MML 13.1

    “Let me take your Bible and I will show it to you,” he said. To the astonishment of all, he began paging through the Old Testament, then inquired, “Where is Revelation?” I answered, “Look near the last cover of the Bible. It is the last book, but there are only twenty-two chapters in that book.” He returned my Bible and said, “Well, I would like to talk with you sometime, but I have another engagement I must meet right now,” and in confusion he left the room.MML 13.2

    Those present were greatly astonished. One lady commented, “I thought he was a learned man.” I explained, “He has a large library and is learned in those books, but he has failed to study his Bible.” The family told me that they were much interested in what I preached the night before, and had met there to talk it over, but the minister came and asked them to send for me, and he would show them the fallacy of my teaching. After a good visit with them, I left with my fear of ministers greatly diminished.MML 13.3

    After five meetings at Mr. Thompson’s schoolhouse, I traveled west to the Twobridge Schoolhouse. Impressed that this would be a good place for meetings, I called at the nearest home. They gave me dinner and showed me where the trustees lived. I saw them and had an appointment given out. The place was filled the first night. Afterwards, a Mr. Beardsley invited me to make my home with him.MML 13.4

    With moonlight nights and fine sleighing, I had a packed house every evening. After my ninth lecture, Mr. Beardsley had a charge brought against him of harboring a heretic in his house. He made his defense publicly in one of my meetings, and endorsed what I preached as the truth. This broke the ice and others took their stand. Since the eleven sermons I gave in that place were all I had prepared, I stopped the meetings and went home to rest, and to see to the needs of my widowed mother.MML 14.1

    But I still dreaded to go out alone and preach. After a few weeks at home, I started for Mr. Thompson’s neighborhood again. On my way I called at Mr. Lamson’s at Clarkson, and asked if someone would go with me to help sing and carry on the meetings, but no one could be spared. Finally, Mr. Lamson walked three or four miles with me, carrying my valise and speaking words of encouragement. After we parted, I went a short distance, sat down on my valise by the roadside and wept until I felt relieved. Then I went on and called on my friend Thompson and his family. They were glad to see me and circulated an appointment for that evening.MML 14.2

    On arriving at the schoolhouse, we found quite a number of rude fellows with a Universalist school-teacher at their head, who seemed bent upon mischief. When I was there before, they had taken offense at my teaching of immortality alone through Christ, so when I began to preach, they started to whisper, then talk aloud. When I reproved them, they fired at my head a shower of parched corn, shot, and hickory nuts. These did not injure me although they struck with considerable force against the blackboard behind me. Deciding it was useless to proceed further, I closed the meeting. Friend Thompson and others wished me to prosecute the boys, but I objected.MML 14.3

    When I reported the incident to Elder Phineas Smith, the minister who baptized me, he invited me to accompany him in meetings at Morganville and Elba. This I did, and it provided excellent schooling for me.MML 14.4

    In May, my brother at Adams Basin came down with malaria, and requested me to come and work in his shop. His chills continued most of the summer, so I did not preach but labored with my hands.MML 14.5

    In November, I arranged to go with Elder Sullivan Heath, an experienced Adventist minister, and spend the winter in Erie County, Pa. So, fitted out with his horse and carriage and a supply of books, we held meetings in Erie, Girard, Washington, and other towns with good results. Friends in Pennsylvania presented me with a horse and light wagon. With this rig I returned in April, and spent the summer in New York.MML 15.1

    During 1850, I was afflicted with a slight lung hemorrhage. Since I was advised to use tobacco as a remedy, I began to smoke cigars. But in September, 1852, I left off the injurious habit. One day as I lighted a cigar, the filthiness of the tobacco habit passed before me like a panorama in contrast with the character of those who are to dwell in the New Jerusalem. I heard as distinctly as if a voice had spoken, “Suppose the Lord should come and find you with that cigar in your mouth. Would you be permitted into that clean place?” I said to myself, “No! Lord, by thy grace I abandon tobacco forever!” I threw the partly-smoked cigar into the Genesse River, and from that day to this never let a particle of the foul stuff pass my lips. The desire for it completely left me.MML 15.2

    In the summer of 1852, I did some house painting in Rochester. When this was over, I found a wife and had to support her. Soon I entered the wholesale and retail trade of Arnold’s patent sash locks. It was remunerative labor, and I still filled my Sunday appointments. In the meantime I was studying the subject of the sanctuary and the two-horned beast of Revelation 13. I could find no proof to sustain the First-day Adventist position that the earth was the sanctuary, but I did not discover what the real sanctuary was. While studying Revelation 13, I read in Litch’s exposition of the two-horned beast, “I think it is a power yet to be developed as an accomplice of the Papacy in subjecting the world.”MML 15.3

    I then searched for claims for Sunday-keeping. I decided there was no divine authority for keeping the day holy, so had no misgivings about working on that day. However, I still had the idea that the law as a whole was abolished. Meanwhile some of the leaders among the first-day Adventists dealt dishonestly with me, and partially destroyed my confidence in them.MML 15.4

    In midsummer an uncle of mine had a violent attack of fever and chills. He called for me and said, “John, I wish you would read from the fifth chapter of James.” I did so. Then he added, “I believe if you will ask Brethren Boughton and Morehouse to join with you in prayer and anoint me with oil, the Lord will heal this fever and I will be well. Will you ask them?” I did so and they immediately came. When we followed the directions in James, he was entirely free from fever, and the room was filled with the presence of the Lord.MML 16.1

    A few weeks later I learned that a seventh-day minister had been to Parma, and many Adventists there now believed the United States to be the two-horned beast, and they also had begun to keep the seventh-day Sabbath. Some of the First-day Adventists tried to prejudice my mind against the Sabbath-keepers by saying, “They get together and scream and yell, and have a great noisy fanatical demonstration.”MML 16.2

    I prayed much about the matter. Then one night I dreamed I sat in an Adventist meeting in Rochester. The room had low, smoky walls and was poorly lighted and ventilated. I recognized in my dream several ministers, among them Joseph Marsh, J. B. Cooke, and O. R. L. Crosier. The people were not only in confusion but looked sad and discouraged. As some of the ministers would arise and preach, their talk seemed to stupefy their listeners. As I meditated upon the situation, a door directly in front of me opened into a much larger room with high walls and a clean, white ceiling. It was well-lighted and ventilated, and everything bore the aspect of good cheer. The people all had Bibles in their hands and seemed to be feasting with great satisfaction on its truths. At the far end of the room hung a chart which differed from any I had ever seen before. It pictured a Jewish Sanctuary, and also the two-horned beast. By the side of the chart stood a tall man whose very countenance indicated earnestness, devotion, and sincerity. In the congregation were brethren from Parma and Hamlin. I dreamed I arose and said, “I’m going to get out of this room and go into the other room.” I began to meditate upon the great contrast between the two rooms, and awoke deeply impressed that I would soon see great light on the sanctuary and the two-horned beast.MML 16.3

    A few days later, Brother Orton of Rochester said to me, “The seventh-day folks are holding meetings at 124 Mt. Hope Ave. Let us go and attend one of their meetings.” I replied, “No! I will not go.” “But,” he argued, “you have a duty there. Some of your flock have joined the Sabbath Adventists, and you ought to get them out of this heresy. They give you a chance to speak in their meeting. Get your texts ready, and you can show them in two minutes that the Sabbath is abolished.” So with seven other First-day Adventists, I went to the meeting.MML 17.1

    PICTURE

    - “Yes” said the minister, “but my text is in the twenty-fifth chapter of Revelation.”

    PICTURE-1843 CHART

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