Hillcrest Prof. Chastisement of Modern Christianity Rings True 75 Years Later
There are few things which people, especially young folks, fear more than being called "Old Fashioned".
Our time has set for its goal, to be modern. Modern in its thinking, behavior, fashion, and religion. What a disgrace to be "Old Fashioned". Better to sacrifice everything, principles, morals, health, body and soul and Godliness, anything to avoid being regarded as "Old Fashioned".
But in spite of the frantic attempt to get away from being "Old Fashioned", we are not very successful. We are very much "Old Fashioned" after all, evidenced by the facts that we enter the world in the old fashioned way, we are nourished and grow in the old fashioned way, we rejoice and laugh, we suffer, weep, sorrow, die, all in the "Old Fashioned" way. Why, then, all this make-belief!
The "Old", that which has been tried and tested and has stood the test of time and conditions, is the fundamental, the real, the worth-while. The same holds good when it comes to "Old Time Religion."
This is a good and proper phrase, because there are many newfangled, false sorts of religions with us today. By "Old Time Religion" is meant real, experimental Christianity, vital Godliness, Holy Ghost Religion, such as the Saints of old enjoyed and taught, the religion set forth in the Good Old Book, the Bible.
Let us briefly note a few distinctive characteristics of the "Old Time Religion." The "Old Time Religion" is a Divine, a supernatural religion wrought by God, above the forces of nature, and lying outside the sphere of natural laws, a religion which has its origin, its existence and consummation in a person, Christ. It is a saving religion.
It saves from sin. The test of any religion is: "What does it do for those who embrace it?" It settles the sin question, gives peace and sconsciene, and opens a new future.
It is practical, heart-felt religion. It brings joy to the soul every day, delivers from a cold, heartless and feelingless religion. It is "Righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost."
It can be lived in the world. It has been lived in the world. Enoch, Gen. 5:24; Noah, Gen. 6:9.
It is a know-so-religion. Not a hope-so, or a guess-so, but a know-so. "These things have I written unto you, that you may know..." 1 John 5:13. "Blessed assurance...", of sins all forgiven. We don't know just how we know, but we know we know. His spirit witnesses with our spirit.
It is a satisfying religion. It meets every craving of the mind and heart. It will solve the church problems, how to hold the young people, etc. It is attractive. It gives all that the heart desires.
It is a separating religion. It separates those who truly embrace it from the world. It is non-compromising. It does not go 50-50. It is unspotted from the world, entirely separated from the world. Some like just enough of the world to take away the reproach of being "Old Fashioned", enough to put a stamp of "modern" upon the life and thus enabling them to "get by".
It is a praying religion. Prayer is its heartbeat. In secret, at family altar, at prayer meeting, in prosperity and adversity. In this way it breathes the heavenly atmosphere.
It is a testifying religion. It can't be hid. It will radiate testimonies to the world.
It is a glorious death-bed religion. "Lord, let now thy servant depart in peace. For mine eyes have seen Thy salvation." What will you take in exchange for such a death-bed? Give me the "Old Time Religion".
--The article above was written by Professor S.L. Klyve in the 1943 Yearbook--