Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Herbert Booth on The Salvation

The following quote comes from a very rare biography of HB written by F.C. Ottman.

Herbert Booth's definition of The Salvation Army:

"What is the Salvation Army, if it's one aim, and its one glory, is not the salvation of the souls of men? Take the redemption of sinners from the standard of this organization, and you have at once reduced her to a huge Benefit Society, or a mere Friendly Association for temporal advantage. But, true to her original purpose, she is the quickest, most effective and far-reaching fluency for the things of eternity to be found in time. All and each of her varied ramifications are for the one great purpose of rescuing men and women from the grip of the Devil. Just as in military warfare everything about the soldier, from his musket to his canteen, is for fighting the foe, and everything about the army, from the great gun to the nail that fastens the shoe upon the horseman's steed, is for victory over opposing forces—so everything undertaken by the Salvation Army must have as its end the emancipation of mankind.

The Salvation Army then, being interpreted, is the salvation of souls. From her thousands of platforms she tells the terms of peace between God and man. From her countless rings she thunders the judgements of Jehovah to the passing crowds. Her institutions are outlets from the sea of shame and inlets into the harbour of bliss. Her Homes are houses of prayer and personal entreaty. Her shelters are fortresses of refuge from open and fierce temptation, which put their inmates to sleep with their song and awaken them with a message of peace. Her Officers are the Knights of a Crusade against an unbelief which has laid siege to the citadel of the heart."

Grace and peace


Friday, February 06, 2009

Booth’s Ladder to Holiness...

A Ladder to Holiness – Being seven steps to full salvation – By William Booth (Revised 1951)

This ladder is constructed on the plan described in the tract entitled 'How to be Saved,' and is intended for the use of those seeking for holiness of heart. To those who wish to use it we give the same counsel with which we commence the former, namely:

1. Set apart a special time for its consideration, retiring for the purpose if possible into some place where you can be alone with God.

2. Read the paper carefully and thoughtfully from first to last, and then go through it again, following the injunctions step by step.

3. Earnestly pray for the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

4. On your knees before God, with all your heart take one step at a time. Be careful not to leave the first step for the second until it is clearly understood, heartily accepted, and solemnly decided upon; and so on with the second and third steps, until the last is reached.

5. If this course be followed in sincerity, the desired blessing of a clean heart will be attained.



I am a child of God. I can with confidence call God my Father. I know that Jesus Christ is my Saviour, and that He has pardoned my sins. I have been converted-that is, my heart and life have been changed by the Spirit of God. The fear of death and judgment and Hell has been taken away.

I love God and want to please Him. I hate sin and long to be entirely delivered from it. I pray and read my Bible and love Christ's people. I work and give to extend the kingdom of God on the earth and wish to do more.

I have a good hope that my Saviour will be with me when I come to die, that He will acquit me in the Day of Judgment, and then receive me into Heaven to dwell with Him forever.



But although I have this assurance that I am a child of God, I know also to my sorrow that there are evils still existing in my heart and life which ought not to be there, and which I very much wish could be removed.

For instance, there are in my soul the remains of pride, vanity, bad temper, malice, hatred, bitterness, revengefulness, ambition, lust, sloth, love of the pleasures and treasures of the world, selfishness, want of thorough truthfulness, envy, etc.

(Now select from this list the particular evil, or evils, which you have reason to believe exist within your own heart, with which you have to fight and which lead you into actual sin. Look at that particular sin or sins, when discovered, until you see and feel their hatefulness, and until you detest and loathe them.)

I find that these evils manifest themselves in my conversation, in the manner I discharge my family duties, in the way I conduct my business, and in almost every part of my daily life.

I feel that these evils damage my example as a Salvationist, and very often prevent me reproving sin in those around me, because I feel when I do so I lay myself open to the charge, 'Physician, heal thyself.' I feel that these evils interfere greatly with my happiness, causing me much irritation and vexation of spirit, often leading me into open sin, on account of which I am brought into condemnation and have to seek forgiveness.

But, most deplorable of all, I know that these evils grieve my Saviour, being contrary to His will concerning me, and in direct opposition to His word.

I am sure I hate these sins, and long to be delivered from them.



From what I have read in the Bible, by what I have heard from my comrades, and by the light God has given me by His Holy Spirit in my own heart, I now see and believe that it is possible for me to be delivered from all inward and outward sin, and that I can be made holy in this life. I believe that I can be cleansed 'from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.'

I do not expect to be delivered from temptation or sorrow, from suffering or from the possibility of falling into sin in this world; but I do believe that God can work such a change in my appetites and disposition, and give me such a measure of His Holy Spirit as will enable me to live without committing sin. For now I see that the purpose for which Jesus Christ was born into the world, and for which He lived and died and rose again, was to destroy the works of the devil out of my heart and life.

I believe that in the Bible this blessing of holiness is offered to me, and urged upon my acceptance by the Holy Spirit, and that God is waiting now to cleanse me from all impurity of heart and mind.

Even now, while I kneel before Him, He is saying to me, 'Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put My Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and ye shall keep My judgments, and do them.'

"O joyful sound of Gospel grace! Christ shall in me appear;

I, even I, shall see His face,

I shall be holy here.

This heart shall be His constant home;

I hear His Spirit's cry:

'Surely,' He saith, 'I quickly come';

He saith who cannot lie."



Believing that God has promised to cleanse my heart and my life when I ask Him to do so, I do here and now choose to be holy and determine to seek this blessing, cost me what it may.

I plainly see that I shall not gain it without difficulty. But although I may have to give up some things that appear pleasant to me, and do some things that I would prefer not to do; and although I may have to battle with the Enemy of my soul who does not want me to be holy, and to struggle with my own heart of fearfulness and unbelief before I can enter into this promised land of holiness-still I feel sure that the treasure is worth any sacrifice that I may be called upon to make in order to obtain it.



Seeing that holiness means living without sin, and that God has commanded me to sanctify and make myself holy, which means that I must be a partner with Him in the great work of cleansing my heart and life, I do now fully resolve that I will do all that I can to purify myself. I, therefore, do here and now thoughtfully and solemnly renounce everything that appears to be contrary to the will and wishes of my Lord and opposed to the happiness and holiness of my fellow-creatures.

I put away everything evil in the thoughts, feelings and imaginations of my heart.

I give up all that appears to be evil, wasteful or impure in my personal habits, whether in my eating, drinking, dressing, talking or in any other particular.

I give up and abandon everything that is wrong in the way I conduct myself in my family, in my dealings with my wife or husband (if I am married), with my children or servants (if I have any), in my conduct toward my master or mistress (if I am so employed), in my business and in the general conduct of my daily life.

Nay, not only do I here renounce those things which I know to be evil, but those things which appear to me to be doubtful. I will abstain from doing, or allowing to be done, so far as I can, anything about the rightness or wrongness of which I have any serious doubt. In short, I will not bring myself into condemnation by doing doubtful things.



Not only do I, by God's help, promise to cease from all evil, but I do fully and freely consecrate myself, here and now, to the service of my Lord.

I give Him my body that it may henceforth become His dwelling-place; I give Him my hands, feet, eyes, ears, tongue and everything else connected with my body, together with all its appetites and powers, for Him to keep and employ as He sees fit.

I give Him my mind, with all its faculties of memory, judgment and imagination, that He may cleanse it and preserve it blameless to the day of His coming.

I give Him my heart, with its capacities for affection, worship, hope and faith, that He may purify and fill it with His love.

I give Him my goods, and promise to regard them as belonging to Him and to His kingdom, solemnly engaging to use them in such a way as He will approve.

In short, I give Him my life, and promise to regard myself henceforth as belonging as much to Him in the place where I now live as I expect I shall do when I come to live with Him in Heaven. I leave my condition and position entirely to His good pleasure. He can make me poor or rich, sick or well. He can keep me on earth or take me to Heaven. I belong to Him.



And now, O Lord, believing that Thou desirest me to be holy, that Jesus Christ by His death has purchased for me this deliverance from all evil, and that Thou hast promised to make me holy when I seek for the blessing with all my heart; having renounced every evil way and presented myself a living sacrifice according to Thy wish, I believe that Thou dost here and now accept and purify my offering.

As a stone which the builder takes and lays upon the foundation, so I this moment lay myself on the sure foundation which Jesus Christ has laid, even His own blessed broken body-a sacrifice which by its infinite merit covers all the sins of my past life, and sanctifies the imperfect offering which I make and, regardless of fears and feelings, I believe that Thou dost, for Christ's sake, receive this offering, and that the Blood of Jesus does this moment cleanse me from all sin.

Glory be to the Father, glory be to the Son, and glory be to the Holy Ghost! I am fully the Lord's and He is fully mine!