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Monday, 13 March 2017

The Testimony of Rev Duncan Campbell

The following testimony is by the late Rev Duncan Campbell,1898 -1972 and was transcribed from a message he gave.
Some of you may remember Duncan Campbell was used mightily by God in the Revivals in Scotland during the last century.

During his retirement, he was a regular preacher at conventions in Great Britain, Ireland, South Africa, the United States and elsewhere, He was also a visiting lecturer at colleges, such as Youth With A Mission's School of Evangelism at Lausanne in Switzerland, and went to be with the Lord while lecturing there.


Our reading this morning is taken from book of Psalms. Psalm 66 and we shall read from verse 8.............
O bless our God, ye people, and make the voice of his praise to be heard:
Which holdeth our soul in life, and suffereth not our feet to be moved.
For thou, O God, hast proved us: thou hast tried us, as silver is tried.
Thou broughtest us into the net; thou laidst affliction upon our loins.
Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water: but thou broughtest us out into a wealthy place.
I will go into thy house with burnt offerings: I will pay thee my vows,
Which my lips have uttered, and my mouth hath spoken, when I was in trouble.
I will offer unto thee burnt sacrifices of fatlings, with the incense of rams; I will offer bullocks with goats. Selah.
Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare what he hath done for my soul.
I cried unto him with my mouth, and he was extolled with my tongue.
If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:
But verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer.
Blessed be God, which hath not turned away my prayer, nor his mercy from me.
...............Amen! and God will add his own gracious blessing to the reading of that precious, precious portion of the old testament.
Might I say that I am not here this morning to preach a sermon.  I’m just going to tell you a little regarding the Lord's gracious dealings with myself up to this moment. For two days now, God has been laying it on my heart that I should tell you a little about my own life story but for some reason or other I couldn't find real liberty in my soul to do so. But this morning the dear chairmen of the camp came and suggested that I might say something to you this morning and immediately it came forcibly before me that this was God's moment for me to tell you a little of how God in his mercy led me into the blessing of full salvation and through that into the field of glorious revival. So turn with me to the portion which we read together and to verse 16 “Come and hear all ye that fear God and I will declare what he has done for my soul.”
I might say that there are three outstanding experiences in my life story. First of all the night that God in his mercy saved me. My dear people it begins there. I was at a concert and dance.  I was a piper playing and dancing at this concert and suddenly God spoke to me! I had a praying mother and praying father and I believe they were deeply burdened that night because of my being at this concert and this dance. But in that meeting….. That concert.  God spoke to me as I was playing a Scottish tune known as the “Green hills of Tyrol” and while playing.  O my fingers were busy, but I was frightfully disturbed in my soul and I found myself not dwelling on the green hills of Tyrol but on the green hill of Calvary, and I was so disturbed that on completing that playing of that tune I stepped off the stage, went to the chairmen and said I was leaving the concert. He looked at me and asked “Are you Well?” I said “Yes, very well in body. But fearfully disturbed in my mind, I just made this discovery that I'm on my way to Hell!” And the chairmen was a minister, I regret having to say that and he looked at me and said “You’ll soon get over that!”  I'm thankful to God I haven’t gotten over it to this day!  Not to this day. On my way home I passed a church, and to my amazement I found the church lit at 11 o clock,  couldn’t understand it. Of course I had been away from home on business and I wasn’t aware of the fact that two pilgrims of the Faith Mission were conducting a mission in the parish. And here they were in this church at 11 o clock. I listened at the door and heard someone praying and who was praying but my own father pouring out his heart for the parish and for his own family. O God, bless such fathers, we need them today. Now horses couldn’t have dragged me past that meeting.   I went in, I’m in a pipers regalia and carrying a set of bagpipes and two swords where I was demonstrating sword dancing I left the bagpipes on the back seat with two swords and walked up the aisle and sat beside my father he looked at me and said I’m glad to see you here boy, I’m glad to see you here.  In a matter of minutes, one of the sisters, a highland pilgrim, a girl that spoke our language. She got up and gave a text of scripture out. - God speaketh once, yea twice, but man percieveth it not.  And I knew that God was speaking to me but I was so afraid that I would cause a disturbance in the meeting that I arose and walked out. If I fell on my knees once, I fell on my knees half a dozen times. My dear people I was so distressed in my soul that I was afraid the very ground would open and I would fall into hell.  My dear people this is Holy Ghost conviction, I must have prayed at least 6 times it was after 2 o’clock in the morning before I arrived at the farm to find my dear mother on her knees by the kitchen fire she couldn’t go to the prayer meeting that night - The all night prayer meeting. Friends of ours had called and it was necessary for her to stay at the farm because they were staying overnight with us, but I went over and I told her my story how distressed I was and she looked at me and said, “Your cousins are in your bedroom but I will soon get a bed ready for you  ... But I would say this to you my boy, (I was just in My teens) ..... Go out to the barn and tell God what you told me!” And I went out to the barn. And I can still see the straw prepared for the horses in the morning and I fell upon my knees among the straw and I still remember the prayer that I uttered. “God, I know not how to come, I know not what to do….. but my God I'm coming now, O have mercy upon me! Listen dear people in less time it takes me to tell this story, God swept into my life and I was gloriously born again,  miracle had taken place. after all is it not true, that a born again Christian is a supernatural being. A supernatural being who has had a supernatural experience and blessed be God is so supernaturally altered, in the moment of his  regeneration, that godliness will characterize every part of his being - body, soul and spirit.  My dear people that was what happened. And I am here to say this morning not for one single moment since that day, had I ever any occasion to doubt the work God did in my heart it was real, it was definite and blessed be God, it was supernatural and that is regeneration! Brother – O may I ask...have you had supernatural experience?  If not, doubt whatever experience you have…….. God is supernatural and He moves in the supernatural realm. Shortly after that, to go on with my story,  I joined the forces during the first world war, and I wasnt very long in the forces until I discovered that there were powers resident within me that were more than a match for me. I am thankful to God that he kept me from open sin. O I praise Him for that and the sense of His gracious presence in the trenches, O I knew there. But having said that I also knew that inbred sin was troubling me. An enemy in the garrison of the soul fighting against God, and again and again keeping me in bondage….. I would go on my knees in the trenches and I would ask God to forgive me for the thoughts of my heart. And sometimes they weren’t too clean. O my dear we have got to be honest - The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, and I was conscious of that.
And then a remarkable thing happened. Somehow those in authority got to know…..(I suppose from my records)  that I was a farmer’s son, and consequently I would know something about horses. And immediately I was transferred from the infantry into the cavalry. O Gods ways are wonderful dear people. It was because I was transferred to the cavalry that God met with me, and met with me I would say the second time. O I am thankful to God that I believe in a deeper work of Grace……I couldn’t deny it today.  
But in the last major charge of the British Cavalry, I was severely wounded. And I am now lying on the ground beside a dead horse, the horse had rolled over me in the fall and injured my spine ...but I am also severely wounded in my body and blood is flowing freely from it. While lying there I was convicted and convinced in my own mind that I was dying. O it came forcibly before me, the blood flowing freely - "O no you can’t live"  these were thoughts that coursed through my mind. And suddenly that verse of scripture came before me. “Without holiness no man can see God. And my dear people conscious deep in the glorious realization that I was born again. I felt very unworthy and very unfit to meet God.  O I’m just telling you how I felt, but then in the providence of God another remarkable thing happened the Canadian horse were called out to a second charge.  I refer to the Lord Strathcona Horse of Canada and when charging over the bloody battlefield with the hundreds wounded and perhaps hundreds dying a horses hoof struck me in the spine. They were charging over the dead and the living, and that horses hoof struck me and I must have groaned because that groan registered in the mind of the young trooper and when the charge was over he was among the few that came back, and I tell you there was very few, it was a dreadful day. But he came right to where I lay, dismounted, lifted me and threw me across the horses back and took the reins and galloped to the nearest casualty clearing station now it was on that horses back that the glorious miracle happened. I remembered a prayer of my father or a prayer of Murray M’Cheyne and I cried “God, O God make me as holy as a saved sinner can be!”  And God did it! O I think I mentioned this already but it’s worth mentioning again but God swept into my life and I knew in a matter of minutes an experience that I didn’t think was possible this side of heaven. Through all my soul its waters flow, Thro’ all my nature stealing; And deep within my heart I knew the consciousness of healing. O my dear people I was healed physically, No…..Spiritually – Yes!  A sense of God kept coursing through.   I already mentioned this I that at that moment I felt as a pure as an angel. I am only saying what I felt dear people don’t misunderstand me. Only God knew where I stood and how I stood but that was how I felt. My dear people if you wish to honour God - Give him credit for the Excellency of his work in redemption, He is a God that heals and a God that saves!  I was brought to the casualty clearing station now let me say this that I could hardly speak a word of English then, my language was Gaelic the language of the highlands of Scotland and I couldnt praise in English, I couldnt pray in English all my reading was done in Gaelic. My singing in the same language, but that afternoon I couldn’t sing. I was to weak through the loss of blood but I could repeat the psalms – O thou my soul, bless God the Lord; and all that in me is. Be stirred up his holy name to magnify and bless. And I kept repeating it. there wasn’t a single person in that casualty clearing station that could understand a single word of what I said, but my dear people this is God, this is the operation of a sovereign God into that casualty clearing station, God came in convicting power and within an hour seven Canadians were saved, it was my first experience of Holy Ghost revival. I wasn’t there very long when I had to be removed to hospital to be treated and in the mercy of God I got there and after a few weeks in that hospital I was transferred to a hospital in Scotland and there for eleven months I experienced the gracious movings of God in the hospital. O my dear people to see God working to see men, and yes women being saved. Just a word about Jesus and that did it!  I couldn’t preach dear people I couldn’t preach. But after a year and a month I got home to the farm, and on arriving home more or less fully recovered from my injury and wound, my parents were very anxious that I should go in for the ministry with the little English that I had. But what university would accept me? What collage could I go too?  and I immediately came to the conclusion that it wasn’t necessary, why should I spend 5 or 7 years in training when God in a matter of minutes could send revival. My dear people that was the conviction that gripped me and with permission of my parents, I just went out to the villages of Argyll in Scotland, and in a matter of days. I saw what is commonly referred to as the mid Argyle Revival. O my dear people, God swept in. When he the Holy Spirit is come unto you, He will convict the world of sin, of righteousness and of judgement and God is doing it……Just talking about Jesus, just talking about the Saviour and in effect saying “He saved me and because He saved a sinner like me - He can save you” That was the burden of my message and for 5 years along with another young brother from Ireland, I saw the hand of God in revival. And I could, I think I could trace it back to that experience on the horses back when God blessed me again. Call it what you like ‘A second blessing’ or a deeper work of grace’ ‘A full Salvation’  I’m not caring what you call it. It’s the experience that the doctor said yesterday. it’s the experience that counts…… that bless God I felt that I had the experience.  
5 years in the midst of revival in mid Argyle and then tragedy....O let me tell you brother. You can never get to the place where it will be impossible for you to fall. A man said to me last year. In the city of Birmingham. “Mr. Campbell I haven’t sinned for 40 years!” I said brother “I’m afraid you’ve broken the record then. There is such a sin as the sin of presumption. Brother, you have broken the record!”  But let me say this – O let me say it again you'll never get to the place where it will be impossible for you to sin. I think I would agree with the late Dr Macintyre of Glasgow that you’ll never get to the place, where it will be impossible to sin. But blessed be God you can be in the place where it’s possible not to. I think I would agree with that. You may not, but to me it is a truth worth holding on to. But tragedy....... I suddenly decided to go in for the ministry. By this time I’m thinking of getting married and I had a question mark in my mind as to wither it was right to ask my young lady to go out with me without any real preparation for a home. And somehow I had a doubt in my mind as to the rightness of it.   I was by this time I was associated with the Faith Mission. And of course as a member of the Faith Mission we are not promised a penny, not a dollar. And I’m afraid that unbelief crept in and to cut a long story short found myself training for the ministry and this is one thing that I deeply regret. Because I wasn’t very long training when I came under the influence of professors that had no time for the authority and the inspiration of the word of God and I found myself doubting the first three chapters of Genesis. My dear people it began there...O it began there. O my God have mercy on professors that lead young people astray. O keep your young people from them, better to have no training and call for the ministry than be cursed and damned by such men. My dear people take that to heart.
I had my own experience, for 17 years I moved in a barren wilderness. It’s true I was evangelical in my preaching, so much so that several occasions I was asked to conduct special missions I was even asked to address Keswick conventions because I was Campbell of the 21 Revival.  I was Campbell of the mid Argyle Revival and because of that I addressed those conventions and conduct those missions. And God in his mercy gave me a measure of encouragement, God is wonderful.  17 years of it knowing in my own heart I wasn’t right with God...O what an experience, what an experience...feeling out of touch, and on my knees before God, again and again, I acknowledged it. Until one morning I was preparing for a Keswick convention I’m in my study it was about 5 o’clock in the morning when I heard someone singing in the drawing room of the manse and of course I recognized the voice it was the voice of my own young daughter and she was singing “Coming, coming, yes, they are, Coming, coming, from afar; From the Indies and the Ganges, Steady flows the living stream, To love's ocean, to His bosom, Calvary their wond’ring theme”. There was something about that singing that spoke to me, and gripped me, and moved me, because I knew that lassie was thinking of the day when she would be in Nepal as a missionary, definitely called by God to that field. She's only 16 yrs. of age but she accepted the call and decided to train with a view to being there. She went in for nursing and qualified, then went in to a bible school and did a full course, but she is now singing in the drawing room. “Coming, coming yes they are”...and I couldn’t sit in my study and I went down to the room, I sat on a chair. And after singing through this solo, she came over and she threw herself on my knee as daughters sometimes do. She put her two arms round my neck and said to me, "Daddy - I would like to have a talk with you". Well, I said Sheena I’ll be happy indeed to talk with you, but first of all might I ask what is it that is moving you this morning. Then she looked at me and said, “O Daddy isn’t Jesus wonderful, isn’t Jesus wonderful!”   And I said to her, Sheena what is it that makes Jesus so wonderful to you at 5 o’clock this morning, Daddy, I’ve just spent an hour with him. I've just spent an hour with Him, an hour in the presence of God, up waiting upon him at 4 o clock in the morning. O my dear people listen to it - that’s what makes Jesus wonderful, Fellowship divine.
But O what was coming to me. We went to my study, and she said “For several days Daddy I’ve been battling against facing you with this question, but I must do it. When you were a young pilgrim before when you went in for the ministry, you saw revival, you saw revival. How is it Daddy that you’re not seeing revival now?” And then faced me this crushing question. “Daddy you have a large congregation and many are joining the church, and Daddy when did you last kneel beside a poor sinner and lead him to Jesus?”  My dear people that shook me. That shook me. I went to the Keswick convention that night and did my part but on my way home. I vowed in the presence of God that if he didn’t bring me back to the experience that I had on that horses back, I would give up the ministry and go back into business and my dear people I meant it, O I meant it. I would be anything but a deceiver.   When I arrived home I couldn’t take supper, I went to my study.  I said to my wife and daughter – “Don’t disturb me tonight; I’m going to have a session with God”.   And I threw myself on my face in my study, and I cried to God to forgive me, O I cried to Him to forgive me. And in about an hour bless His name he came to me - Who forgiveth all thine iniquities and who healeth all they diseases!   And I knew that God had come to meet me again, and to bring me back to that glorious experience in the fullness of the blessing of the Holy Ghost. I know that I lay there with this power coming over me, O I cant fully describe it, I can’t put into words but I was caught up in that experience that could only be explained in terms of God. An experience of the Holy Ghost that had come again, but just at that moment a vision came to me, and that was a vision of Hell. And I could see multitudes, multitudes streaming over the caverns of death to be doomed and damned eternally, what a vision. O what a vision. At that moment, the door of my study opened and that dear lassie came in. She lay down beside me and I can almost hear her voice now as she is praying to God and saying, “O Jesus keep his reason to Daddy”.   She was afraid I was going mental because of the vision God gave me, the vision of souls lost eternally. God kept my reason to me and suddenly it left me, but it left me weak, O brother it left me weak.  And then a voice seemed to say to me go back to the Faith Mission, give up the ministry, you have suffered much by what you listened to in the church for 17 years you’ve been in a barren wilderness - obey God!   And at that moment, the old question arose again. The children aren’t yet educated they will have to face university and college. Is that possible in the Faith Mission? And for a second or two darkness, o darkness came into my soul…. darkness came into my mind....and I was facing the cost of this decision. When suddenly this angel of God, I can call her that. Spoke, she put her hand on my body and said “O Daddy, Daddy, whatever it costs go through with God. Go through with God!” Then she said a remarkable thing....”I believe that your facing the question that if you go back to the mission because I’m fully persuaded that God is asking you to go back”. My dear people the secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him. and that Lassie knew that God was calling me back to the mission and she said this “Daddy, perhaps your wondering how you can look after us I know Daddy that you’ve promised to give me a new coat on my Birthday, but Daddy, Mammy will be quite willing to change my old coat you needn’t buy me a new coat. I tell you my dear people it was ‘That’ ….that did it. Here a lassie as anxious to be well dressed as anybody but quite willing to have her old coat changed, in order that, that. would make it easier for me to come to make a decision and go back to the Faith Mission. And thank God, O thank God, I said yes to God! And the flood tides of glory came over me again...and if I had a vision of Hell...O I had a vision of the risen Christ! the Risen Christ! Able to save to the uttermost and God say to me “Go out and tell it again!” And on the following morning, I wrote three letters to the secretary of my congregation, to the presbytery clerk and to the clerk of the assembly and resigning my charge in this town. But retaining my status as a Presbyterian minister in Scotland, and I retain that to this day. But I'm now free in a months time, I’m free to go out. I’m free to proclaim the glorious gospel and I'm happy in the midst of the Holy Ghost! My dear people I say that from the depths of my heart, it was the Holy Ghost that did it. And in a very short time. I found myself in the midst of this glorious revival that continued for three years. And continues to this day. It has kept coming since then, wave after wave. I was telling someone yesterday of a meeting I attended in the town of Stornoway, it was addressed by one of our workers. She’s singing....a wonderful singer, reputed to be the finest gospel singer in Scotland at that time. Wonderfully used of God. And she's singing to the crowds that gathered, and the crowd was so tense that the police had to be called out to control the traffic through the town and they recognizing that God was moving, directed the traffic round the back of the town rather than disturb the meeting. My dear people this is God at work. A young man was passing the open air meeting on his way to a dance when along with others he was suddenly gripped by God and in a very short time on his knees in a close, he cried to God for mercy he didn’t get deliverance, he didn’t get peace and at the end of the meeting or near its end he came over to this girl and said would you mind addressing a meeting in my home.  "If your prepared to have a meeting between 12 and 1 o clock in the morning yes. Because I don’t think it would be possible to be at your home before then. I believe that I shall be here till 11 o clock  at any rate"   We went to his home that night, arrived there between 12 and 1 o clock. And the Spirit of God came down. O my dear people to witness this is something that you can never forget, so much so that the father rose and went out to God-fearing men. Went out and gathered the neighbour’s in, got them out of bed telling them revival had come to his home. When his son who was saved yesterday led the family worship. And before the morning 11 of the neighbour’s were soundly saved but within a fortnight (Two weeks) 62 were born again including the ministers three families. My dear people that’s God at Work. That’s God at work! Now before I sit down I think I ought to tell you this. One of the leading tweed merchants in that community came to me. And asked how many of the family had I so I told him, and then he said this to me you know that practically all my weavers were saved during the revival. And I feel that I must give you a peace offering....of thankfulness and I want you to come to my office tomorrow and I’m going to give you some patterns of Harris tweed you’ll take them home. And you’ll get you wife and yourself and every member of the family to select two lengths of tweed. One for a suit and the other for a coat…..So far as the menfolk are concerned. And the ladies a costume and a coat. And dear Sheena got a new Harris tweed coat!

My dear people that’s how God works. But I come to this thought and challenge what has all this brother to do with you. Perhaps your in a congregation, perhaps your in a community that needs God. Are you prepared? O brother are you prepared to recognize that the answer is in the baptism of the Holy Ghost. The answer is to be rightly related to God, cleansed from Sin, and God in control in your life. Is that true of you?  O my dear people that’s a question I want to leave with you.  Is this desire and this hunger and this thirst uppermost in your heart this morning? and are you saying “O God do it for me this morning” and God’s arm is not short, his ear is not heavy. And the God,  O my brother listen - the God that did it for me is no respecter of persons. Not because I’m a highlander with a highland background, no, no. He's no respecter of persons. And the God that did it for me, can do it for you now. Come my dear people I believe that, God is here to do it. I believe in a covenant keeping God, a God who is true to his covenant engagements. If my people called by name will humble themselves. O let me say again what that dear young women said addressing a meeting of ministers.   God is not obliged to send revival to you because your praying. What a statement! But she went on to say this.  A covenant-keeping God must be true to his covenant engagements when you humble yourself and pray.  But it begins with the humbling. My dear people I leave that with you and I ask you to face it with honesty and with sincerity, I believe revival could break out here. I believe that dear people. I believe that God is anxious, O He’s anxious….. this is the confidence that we have in him. That if we ask anything according to his will he heareth us. Is it according to Gods will that your heart should be cleansed today, and made a fit temple for God the Holy Ghost to dwell in? Is that according to His will? is it according to His will that revival should come and the multitudes streaming to hell should be arrested my brother He willeth not the death of any, but that all should come to him and live. According to his will, He heareth us. And if we know that he heareth, O my God you’re listening. If we  know that he heareth us, we know that we have the petition, that we desire of him. my dear brother, my dear sister if that is a conviction with you and a realization that you’re not yet in that place, I would say that’s the place for you on your knees before God. Confessing, O confessing. But brother you can do it where you’re sitting just now, you can do it.  I surrender all, all to thee my blessed Saviour I surrender all.

Transcribed from the message Duncan Campbell which can be found
Sermon Index His Testimony And Conversion by Duncan Campbell

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