How Pentecost Came To Los Angeles


The latter part of March, 1907, I received an invitation to come to Conneaut, Ohio, with a check enclosed for fifty dollars. They wanted “Pentecostal” meetings there. The leader wrote me they were hungry for “Pentecost.” I felt it was a call from God to go east but could not help wondering if they really knew what they were inviting for themselves. The letter seemed full of enthusiasm, the thing John Wesley so strongly discouraged and deprecated. His definition of “fanaticism” was, “expecting, the end without the means.” I did not cash the check, fearing lest they might be disappointed when they got through with me. They had to learn that “Pentecost” meant the dying out to the self-life, carnal ambition, pride, etc., etc. It meant for them to enter into the “fellowship of His sufferings,” not simply to have a popular, good time. This I felt they did not realize. A real Christian means a martyr, unavoidably, in one way or another. Few people are willing to pay the price to become a real Christian, to accept the ostracism, false accusation, and condemnation of others. But God has only one standard for His church, for all time. Present day profession is for the most part a mere sham. Only a small percentage of it is real.

A man once asked Luther to recommend to him a book both agreeable and useful. “Agreeable and useful!” replied Luther, “Such a question is beyond my ability. The better things are the less they please.”

“Except a man forsake ‘all’,” said Jesus, “he cannot be my disciple.” This may require some qualification, or explanation, as to positive action, but the principle remains the same for all. The church since her fall in the early centuries has had altogether a mistaken conception of her calling, and of salvation. All believers are called to a one hundred per cent consecration. God has no two standards of consecration for the foreign missionary, and the home Christian. We cannot find it in the Bible. One is called to consecrate their all as well as the other, as God’s steward, in their own place and calling. One goes, one prays, and one gives. It takes the three to make a missionary. “This is a hard saying. Who can hear it?”

God has had but one purpose, and interest, in humanity since the “fall.” That has been to bring man back to God. The whole old dispensation, with its providential dealings, was unto this one end. God had one recognized people, the Jews. He had one purpose in this nation. All their operations were to one end. All their worship pointed to that one end - to bring back the race, nations, to the true knowledge of God, and to bring in the Messiah of the world. Jesus Christ had but one interest in coming to this earth. His second coming waits for but this one thing also. When this Gospel shall have been preached in all the world “then shall the end come,” the “curse” be lifted. Is the church working, with all her resources, for this one purpose, and to this one end? That certainly does not mean the selfish heaping up of property and riches, more than we really need. It does not mean getting all we want for ourselves, and then tossing the Lord a dollar we do not need. We have had the order totally reversed since the early church’s fall. God requires exactly the same consecration of all. And here is where the Ananias and Sapphira business has come in. Not “one-tenth,” in this dispensation, but “all.” Our bodies are the temples of the Holy Ghost, and we are to be one hundred per cent for Him at all times. We belong to Him. He has created us, and bought us back, redeemed us, after we had mortgaged His property, not ours, to the devil. In no sense are we our own. We are redeemed back, with the “blood.” How long would it take, or have taken, to evangelize the world under this rule? Think on these things! Is the church moving normally, in divine order? The politico-religious system, since the early church, and today, is largely a hybrid, mongrel institution. It is full of selfishness, disobedience, and corruption. Its kingdom has become “of this world,” rather than a “heavenly citizenship,” calling, with spiritual weapons.

The doctrinal issue has also been a great battle. Many were too dogmatic at “Azusa.” Doctrine after all is but the skeleton of the structure. It is the frame-work of the “body.” We need flesh on the bones, the Spirit within, to give life. What the people need is a living Christ, not dogmatic, doctrinal contention. Much harm was done the work in the beginning by unwise zeal. The cause suffered most from those within its own ranks, as always. But God had some real heroes he could depend upon. Most of these sprang from the deepest obscurity into sudden prominence and power, and then as quickly retired again, when their work was done. Some one has well said: “Men, like stars, appear on the horizon at the command of God.” This is a true evidence of a real work of God. Men do not make their times, as some one has also truly said, but the times make the man. Until the time no man can produce a revival. The people must be prepared, and the instrument likewise.

The historian D’Aubigne has well said: “God draws from the deepest seclusion the weak instruments by which He purposes to accomplish great things; and then, when he has permitted them to glitter for a season with dazzling brilliancy on an illustrious stage, he dismisses them again to the deepest obscurity.” Again he says: “God usually withdraws His servants from the field of battle only to bring them back stronger and better armed.” And this was the case with Luther, shut up in the Wartburg, after his glittering triumph over he great ones of earth at Worms.

D’Aubigne writes again: “There is a moment in the history of the world, of such as Charles II, or of Napoleon, which decides their career and their renown. It is that in which their strength is suddenly revealed to them. An analogous moment exists in the life of God’s heroes, but it is in a contrary direction. It is that in which they first recognize their helplessness and nothingness. From that hour they receive strength of God from on high. A great work of God is never accomplished by the natural strength of man. It is from among the dry bones, the darkness, and the dust of death, that God is pleased to select the instruments by means of which he designs to scatter over the earth His light, regeneration and life. Strong in frame, in character and in talents, Zwingle, whose defect consisted in this strength, was destined to see it prostrated, that he might become such an instrument as God loves. He needed the baptism of adversity, and infirmity, of weakness and pain. Luther had received it in that hour of anguish when his cell and the long galleries of the convent at Erfurth re-echoed with his piercing cries. Zwingle was appointed to receive it by being brought into contact with sickness and death.” - DAubigne.

Men must come to know their own weakness before they can hope to know God’s strength. The natural strength and ability of man is always the greatest hindrance to the work of God, and to God’s working. That is why we had such a deep dying out, especially for the workers and preachers, in the early days of “Azusa” Mission. God was preparing His workers for their mission.

In answer to prayer the Lord opened the way for us, as a family, east. I carried my check from Conneaut, Ohio, in my pocket, uncashed. Wife wanted to see her people in New York State, and I did not know when I would be ready to return to California. I wanted to be free for God’s full will. I remembered then, for the first time, that I had prophesied when we left Pittsburg for the west that we would be back in five years’ time. God must have shown me, for it was now exactly five years.

Mother Wheaton, the prison evangelist, and Brother Amil Allen, traveled with us. We got a pass part way. At Salt Lake City we saw the Mormon Temple, held a service in the penitentiary, and then ran on to Denver. Ruth and John, our two children, were taken very sick, but God delivered. I preached at Holiness headquarters one night in Denver. Here we had been members and labored before we came to California. I preached for Brother Fink at the Pentecostal Hall, and we had a powerful time. Several souls were saved, among them one whole family, and the saints were wonderfully built up. Some received the “baptism.” I had three meetings in all. God wonderfully used two little girls here. They both had the “baptism,” and a real ministry prayer. Their pleadings with the unsaved broke up the house. Their freedom from self-consciousness was a powerful lesson to us all. It was a strange work and ministry of God. Terrible conviction was upon the unsaved. “Except ye become as a little child,” we learned anew. Evidently modern evangelistic methods are not altogether essential for the salvation of souls. The churches can possibly beat us on that line. We had better stick to our peculiar gift, though it be a “strange work.” We will succeed better at that. Let God have his way. In those days the power and presence of God among us often converted sinners in their seats. We did not have to drag them to the altar and fight with them to get them saved. They did not come to the altar to fight God. There was much of the “singing in the Spirit” at Denver, as at “Azusa.” This peculiar “gift” seemed to accompany the work wherever it broke out.

At Chicago we stopped at Beulah Rescue Home. I preached in the Home, and also at Brother Durham’s mission, on North avenue, under a most precious anointing. I preached three times also at S. B. Shaw’s mission, the author of the little book, “The Great Revival in Wales.” We finally reached Conneaut, Ohio, April 30, in a snowstorm. God had shown me in Los Angeles that I would start my meetings there May 1. They tried to hurry us through a month sooner. But we kept in divine order. The presence of the Lord was with us in Conneaut, from the start. It was a Holiness mission. We really had little to do in the main but look on and see God work. The Spirit took the meetings. In fact we were on our faces most of the time in prayer. I could hardly keep off my face at Conneaut. The battle was the Lords. And no one else could have fought it there. We were up against most stubborn resistance. The Lord had warned me of this condition before we left Los Angeles. The leader who had written inviting me had not the slightest idea what “Pentecost” meant, just as I had feared. He wanted a big time, with a big increase in the mission, to build up the work in numbers, etc.

I soon found him planted squarely in the way. While professing holiness he was tremendously alive to his own importance. God exalts no man or mission, but rather humbles all in the dust together, that He alone may he glorified. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked.” Only God knows it. Sister Ivy Campbell, from “Azusa,” was there with us. God had sent her on ahead some time before, to blaze the way for us. Her home was in Ohio. Brother Kennedy, a Wesleyan Methodist preacher, had been preaching for them. He was a most humble man of God.

The Lord wrought very deeply. Several were under the power all night on one occasion. There was no closing at 9 o’clock sharp, as the preachers must do today in order to keep the people. We wanted God in those days. We did not have a thousand other things we wanted before Him. And He did not disappoint us. One sister sang and spoke in “tongues” for five full hours. Souls were saved. The saints were wonderfully built up and strengthened by the presence of the Lord. A number received the “baptism,” and the mission became full fledged for “Pentecost.” One Sunday night the hall was packed out, to the middle of the street. I went to the hall one morning to look up the folks, who had not come home. Several had stayed all night. I found them lost to all but God. They could not get away. A very shekinah glory filled the place. It was awesome, but glorious.

Our big fight proved to be with the leader, who had sent for me. The meetings had not gone far until we found him wedged squarely in the way. One sister nearly died under a travail of soul for him. He was fleshly, proud and self-important, and would not let the meetings go deeper. We could go no further. He did not seem to have the least idea of humbling himself with the rest of us. But he had to come down. God showed me I must deal with him. I had to obey, or quit. There was no use going any further. We were eating at his table and sleeping in his beds. It was a hard thing to have to do. But I went after him. We locked horns and he resisted me fiercely. But God brought him down. The Spirit convicted him and he fell in a heap. He almost jarred the building when he fell. He lay under a bench for five hours and began to see himself as God saw him. The Spirit took him all to pieces and showed him his pride, ambition, etc. Finally he got up, without a word, and went home. There he locked himself in his room and remained until God met him. He came out from that interview meek as a little lamb, and confessed his shortcomings. The hindrance was out of the way and the meetings swept on in power. He got the “baptism” himself some time later, after we had gone.

Brother Kennedy bought me a new suit of clothes before I left. So the Lord rewarded me for my faithfulness, and He did not have to depend on the leader, either. It pays to obey God. I visited Brother Thomas K. Doty, editor of “Christian Harvester,” at Cleveland. Here I also preached with much anointing, for Brother Kramer, at the C. M. A. I spoke for two solid hours. I cashed my check here, that they had sent me from Conneaut to come east on. The meetings had been a success and all were satisfied. They gave me an offering, besides.

Our next meeting was at Youngstown, Ohio. Here I preached for the Christian Missionary Alliance. Some nights we were held in the hall until daylight. We could not get away. God was so near no one felt tired or sleepy. I had much real soul-travail here. In some meetings suppressed groans were about all one could hear. Very much prayer characterized the services. The Spirit was waited upon for every move, and He took complete control. No two services were alike. In one meeting the very silence of Heaven took possession of us for about four hours. Scarcely a sound was uttered. The place became so steeped in prayer and sacred that we closed the door softly, and walked the same, scarcely speaking to one another, and then only in whispers. Another night we were held in adoration and praise for hours. We seemed to be looking into the very face of God. There was no boisterousness in these meetings, but a subdued spirit throughout.

Another night we were all broken up by the love of God. We could do nothing but weep for a whole hour. Every meeting was different, and each seemed to go deeper. Two or three whole nights were spent in prayer. One night the Spirit fell upon us like an electric shower. Several went over on the floor and God was master for the time. Such singing in the Spirit, the “heavenly chorus,” I have seldom heard. A number came through speaking in “tongues.” But again our battle was with the leader. He opposed me fiercely. He was not right with God, and would not yield. His wife was now under the power, seeking the “baptism,” but he carried on in the “flesh” until the Spirit was terribly grieved. The devil often gets into a preacher’s coat. Satan used him persistently in the beginning of the meetings. But God got the victory, in spite of him. He did not yield. It is amazing the hold the devil has on some preachers.

I preached one night at Akron, Ohio, for Brother McKinney, with much blessing. We then had five services at New Castle, Pennsylvania, with the C. M. A. again. God greatly blessed here also. From here we went to Alliance, Ohio, for the Pentecostal camp meeting. It was June 13. We had a wonderful camp. It was the first one of its kind in the northeast. I led the preachers’ meetings. The first Sunday morning I was given a message, but the leader asked me to speak in the afternoon, instead. I said nothing, but prayed. In a few minutes he came back and told me to preach in the morning. In those days men did not get far without God. I preached with great help from the Lord on, “Jesus Christ, in World-wide Evangelism, in the Power of the Holy Ghost.” Everything centers around Jesus. We may not put the power, gifts, the Holy Ghost, or in fact anything ahead of Jesus. Any mission that exalts even the Holy Ghost above the Lord Jesus Christ is bound for the rocks of error and fanaticism.

This was a very important camp, in the inception of the work in that part of the country. We remained two weeks, and I preached eleven times in all. We had a powerful time and a large, representative attendance. Four hundred camped on the grounds. Often meetings lasted all night. Missionary enthusiasm ran high. Meals were on the free-will offering plan. God bountifully provided and a precious spirit of unity prevailed. We were “brethren,” baptized in “one Spirit,” into “one body.” Thus Jesus prayer was answered, “that they all may be one.” The harmony between the preachers was especially blessed. Such a spirit of love we have seldom seen displayed. Those were wonderful days. It could be truly said that in honor we preferred one another in those days.

No organ or hymn books were used. The Spirit conducted the services and there seemed no place for them. Hundreds definitely met God. Numbers were saved, baptized in the Spirit, and healed. Many received a call to foreign fields, to prove God along real faith, Bible lines. The rapid evangelism of the world, on real apostolic lines, was the goal set. The present generation must be reached by the present generation of necessity, or lost. The altars were seldom empty of seekers day or night. Men who had been both in the Wales and India revivals declared this to be the deepest work of all. We determined to fight nothing but sin, and to fear nothing but God. I asked the Lord for a certain amount of money, which we needed to get on east. The committee gave me exactly the amount I had prayed for, without a single hint from me. God did it. Praise Him!

I took the wife and children to my father-in-law’s, near Peekskill, New York. He was a Methodist pastor, living six miles back in the hills, in a beautiful, hid-away, quiet place. Here they remained while I ran out to conventions, etc. I preached three times, the first Sunday, for my father-in-law, but both he and his churches were spiritually dead. Some of his official board both smoked and drank. I could do little for them. They did not want what I had. In New York City I visited Stephen Merritt, and attended a service at the C. M. A. headquarters. I also preached at a colored Pentecostal assembly. At Nyack (N. Y.) C. M. A. Convention, I spoke at two services, with much blessing. Some one paid my expenses there. I had not been invited. After a few days’ rest with my family I went to Philadelphia, visited the Grace Baptist Church, where I had once been a member, and from there ran on to Pittsburg. Here I preached for Brother Whitesides, at the C. M. A., afternoon and evening. I was to take the train the same night for Cincinnati, but could not stop my message in time. The people were so hungry. I preached for two hours. They gave me fifteen dollars, and I proceeded the following morning. This money paid my fare from Peekskill to Cincinnati. The Lord was with me.

I stopped at Brother Knapp’s Bible School, and next morning ran on to Wilmore, Kentucky, to attend a prayer convention. Here I preached seven times during the convention. The object of this camp was to develop unity among the brethren, and to raise up intercessors. S. B. Shaw and Thomas K. Doty were there, Rev. Shaw had invited me. But the camp was pretty well divided. Many of the saints were hungry for more of God. Conditions proved very detrimental to this. Brother Pickett had charge of the camp and charged a gate fee. This was mercenary. The holiness manifested I felt was of a rather acrid nature. It was not a “Pentecostal” camp.

I was taken quite sick with fever here but a missionary from India prayed for me and God broke the fever. Both the food and the water were bad. The convention voted me twenty dollars. This paid my fare home, to my family. I had traveled eighteen hundred miles. It seemed a long trip as I had never been more than a hundred miles from my family before. Our train ran over and killed a man on the way south. How uncertain is life! Brother Doty wrote in “Christian Harvester,” concerning this camp: “There was loftier preaching, but Brothers Bartleman and Shaw were probably the greater prayer contingent for the work in hand.” So I thanked God, and took further courage.

I next went to Old Orchard, Maine, changing cars at Boston. There was a C. M. A. Convention at Old Orchard. Some souls hungry for “Pentecost” arranged a meeting in the woods and invited me to speak to them. The Lord visited us in a most wonderful way. The devil had tried to keep me from coming here. The trip would cost me at least twenty dollars, and I was not invited. But I knew God had sent me. One evening I had been praying in the grove with a visiting preacher from Scotland. He suddenly took me by the arm and led me up onto the platform, seating me beside himself. He was to preach that evening. He wanted me to pray for him. It was a bold thing to do, but he was a fearless man. I knelt in prayer while he spoke and God greatly helped him. I had never met him before that evening, and have even forgotten his name. The leaders were greatly surprised to see me on the platform, but it was not my doing. I did not, however, venture on again.

A score of hungry souls repaired to the village church for a whole night of prayer, having secured the key from the local pastor. We were not allowed to tarry on the camp grounds. One member of the Nyack C. M. A. faculty got the “baptism” that night, and a backslider was reclaimed. I spoke to this little company in the church the next afternoon and evening, as they would allow no meetings of this kind in the camp. The camp meeting committee then forced the pastor to close the church against us. They did not want their people to get the “baptism.” We went to the woods again. There I spoke the next morning and evening to a good sized congregation. I had nothing to do with arranging these meetings. There were so many hungry for “Pentecost” they insisted on my preaching to them. I did not dare deny them. I spoke in all about four hours that day. The committee had no jurisdiction over the woods outside the camp. I am sure Jesus would not have refused these hungry souls the bread of life. There was no less than one hundred people at the woods meeting. And all hungry for God. Surely He had sent me there for that purpose.

They pressed about thirty dollars in money into my hands. So the devil had lied to me. I came out ahead of all expenses. One sister, who had been a physician, ran after me one day and begged me to receive twelve dollars restitution money that was burning a hole in her conscience. She could not locate the party she had wronged, so turned it over to the Lord. That was a real work of God. The Lord had blessed so mightily in our little meetings that the camp became stirred. Rather than have further, outbroken trouble, the saints thought it best to discontinue the meetings, and I dropped quietly out of camp before the committee could take any definite further action in the matter. Thus we avoided further unpleasantness and strife. The hungry ones were fairly dogging my steps and thronging me. The committee became afraid of my influence with the people.

I stopped a few days at the Moody Convention, at East Northfield, Massachusetts, where I had attended years before, while a young student. Here I had a good rest and took some part in the meetings. Returning to my family, I removed them to my parents’ home at Michener, Pennsylvania. I had not been home for several years. Here I spent a little time with them, resting, and studying the Word. They were very glad to see us. They had never seen the children. Near here I had been raised on a farm, as a boy. At Carversville, near by, I preached in the Presbyterian Church. My older brother, Will, heard me preach here for the first time.

It was now September. I went south to Columbia, South Carolina, preaching a number of times at the Oliver Gospel Mission there in connection with the “Way of Faith” office, where Brother J. M. Pike was editor. I had written many articles for this paper. We had much blessing in the services and I had a good visit with Brother Pike, whom I had never met before. I wrote two articles while here. A sister in New York City sent me ten dollars, Brother Pike gave me fifteen dollars, and. another party gave me three dollars. So the Lord provided for my expenses again. I dropped off at Dunn, North Carolina, where Brother Cashwell’s family lived, and preached five times in the little Pentecostal Church there. Brother Cashwell had gotten his “baptism” earlier, at “Azusa” mission, and had spread the fire in the south. He was away from home at this time. Brother Pike wrote in the “Way of Faith,” after my visit: ‘Brother Bartleman dropped in upon us, unexpectedly, last week. His presence was a benediction to us and our home. His services were made a blessing to those whose hearts are longing for the Pentecostal blessings. None who have intercourse with him can doubt his absolute abandonment to God, and the fullness of the Spirit within him. He lives, moves and has his being in the will of God. We commend him to all who are seeking God’s highest and best.” – “Way of Faith.” We hesitate to reproduce in print such a high commendation, knowing we are not worthy, but do so in order that we may have it before us continually as a goal to be striven to attain to.

The Lord was wonderfully with us in those early days. I preached six times in Washington, D. C., reaching my family again safely, at Michener, Pennsylvania. At Forty-second Street Mission, New York City (“Glad Tidings Hall”), we had powerful times, I had developed brain fag in the long and constant work in California, but this began to leave me now. What I needed was a change. That is the best rest after all. I visited Nyack, New York, again, preaching three times at the C. M. A. Then I removed my family to Philadelphia, to my brother Will’s. Returning to New York City I attended the C. M. A. Convention at the Tabernacle. The saints paid my board, at the Alliance House. Just before I arrived there was not a vacant room in the house. But the Lord emptied one almost the moment I reached there and I was dropped right into it. Rooms were in great demand. A brother gave me ten dollars besides. The Lord had spoken to me upon arriving there: “Let there be no strife between us, for we be brethren.”

I spoke for three hours one night at “Glad Tidings Hall,” while here. Then the people wanted me to continue. They were so hungry for the “Pentecostal” message. I stopped at 11:40 P. M. Workers kept coming in from the Alliance convention, after the meeting closed there. But the devil fairly tore up the earth at the beginning of the meeting, through the rabble outside. He evidently sensed something of what was coming. The next night I preached again and many were prostrated under the power. Some stayed all night. The evangelist in charge of the night meetings at the convention came in himself, after the services had closed at the Tabernacle.

The next night they had an all-night meeting at the convention. A young girl came under the power and her spirit was caught up to the throne. She sang a melody, without words, that seemed to come from within the veil, it was so heavenly. It seemed to come from another world. I have never heard its equal before or since. A. B. Simpson was there himself that night and was tremendously impressed by it. He had been much opposed to the “Pentecostal” work. Doubtless God gave it as a witness for him. Several were slain under the power. Toward morning the presence of the Lord was wonderful. I went to leave the hall just at daybreak and shook hands with a sister hungry for the “baptism.” The Spirit came upon her and I could not turn her loose until she fell at the altar, and came through speaking in tongues.” I shook hands with another hungry sister, as I started to leave the hall again. The Spirit fell upon her and she received the “baptism” right there on her feet, speaking in “tongues” before I could turn her loose. That was a wonderful night.

It was now time for us to start for California again. October 16, 1907, we left Philadelphia, stopping at Pittsburg, where I preached twice for Brother Whitesides, at the C. M. A. again. God met us in a powerful way. Several received the “baptism.” The last one came through at 1 A. M. I preached twice at Beaver Falls, Penn., at a C. M. A. convention, stopping off between trains, by special request. God greatly honored the Word. At Alliance, Ohio, I preached three times. The Lord was powerfully with us. We then proceeded to Chicago, where I preached at Beulah Home, and at Brother Durham’s mission again. At St. Louis we stopped with Brother Seeley Kinne for some time. I preached here eighteen times in all, to as hungry, humble, and appreciative a company as I have ever met anywhere. God was wonderfully with us. I spoke twice at Mother Moise’s Rescue Home, and four times at the C. M. A. hall, with much blessing, also.

At Topeka, Kansas, I preached five times for Brother Foster. One of the meetings here did not break up until daylight. God drew very near. At Denver I preached seven times. The Lord wrought again mightily among the people, but the leader was not true. He came very near causing the death of our little boy, John. He held back the collection the saints had given for me, to buy himself a pair of shoes with. The shoes he already had were better than mine. When I went to buy our tickets for Colorado Springs I found myself short, and had to return to the house and get the balance of the fare from his secretary. He had left town, with my money. We missed our train, and were thrown into Colorado Springs after night. No arrangements had been made for the family. They thought I was alone. We were taken hurriedly to a house without fire the first night. Little John contracted congestion and nearly died. It was freezing weather. And all this because of the sin of the leader in Denver. He had resisted the Spirit greatly in our meetings there. God made him send me my collection later. Some years later he confessed he had faked “Pentecost.” I am afraid too many leaders have done the same.

At Colorado Springs I preached six times. The Spirit flowed like oil. I have seldom found such liberty anywhere. Oh, the possibilities, where purity and unity reign! Brother Brelsford was pastor here. He later went to Egypt as a missionary. Trinity, Colo., was our next stop. I preached ten times here, to a very hungry band of saints. They were much strengthened and blessed. But the high altitude was hard on us. Then the devil had tried to ditch our train just before we arrived there. We came on to Los Angeles from here, over the Santa Fe railroad. One night our wheels began to slide, down a steep grade in Arizona. I put on the brakes with prayer. The Lord brought us through. But I slept very little for two nights. We saw several wrecks along the way, and came near jumping the track ourselves twice before we reached California. The high altitude was also a great strain on my nerves. I was very tired from the summer’s strenuous work. We were glad to be back in California again.

We had checked our trunks to Los Angeles, not knowing where we would find our next home. But before reaching Pasadena the Lord showed me we should get off there. We did not expect anyone to meet us, though I had written Brother Boehmer that we would get back on that train. When we reached Pasadena, with no place to go, we found Brother Boehmer at the depot waiting for us. He took us to a mission home on Mary street they had just opened in connection with the Alley Mission. So God had it all arranged for us, without our knowledge. We were weary pilgrims indeed, needing rest. We arrived December 5, 1907.

We were scarcely located when I went down with a terrible attack of the grippe. Ruth and John were both sick also. The devil had tried to hinder our return, and now seemed determined to kill us. I had shooting pains like needles for three days, in my shoulders and arms, until I was almost insane. The saints prayed and I was delivered. I found the work had fallen back considerably. The saints were badly split up. The Spirit was bound also. The outside opposition had become much more settled and determined. It was the same condition in Los Angeles.

The saints had suffered greatly under the tyranny of a leader who did not himself have the “baptism,” at the Alley Mission. I now helped them to pray him out of the mission and the home, and they were delivered. He had imposed himself on the work. He was a regular “dog in the manger.” A larger mission was opened up on Colorado street, and I had some ministry there also. I found the power had been dissipated much. There was much empty manifestation. A great deal of it was simply froth and foam. This burdened me greatly. The spirit of prayer had been largely lost. In consequence much flesh and fanaticism had crept in. Prayer burns out the proud flesh. It must be crucified, cauterized.

One day I had a strong impression that Brother Allen was in town. We had left him east. Sure enough that very evening he walked in on us. He had just gotten back. The Lord had shown me. We now moved to 194 Stevenson Avenue, next door to Brother Boehmer, into a little cottage. The ministry of intercession was heavy upon me. I preached a number of times at Hermon, Eighth and Maple, and at Azusa Street. One evening at Azusa Mission the spirit of prayer came upon me as a rushing, mighty wind. The power ran all through the building. I had been burdened for the deadness that had crept in there. The temporary leaders were frightened and did not know what to do. They telephoned for help. They had not been with us in the beginning. Brother Seymour was out of town.

I was upstairs in the hallway. Others joined me in prayer. We went down stairs and the fire broke out in the meeting. But the leaders in charge were not spiritual. Other rulers had arisen that “knew not Joseph.” They did not understand it. God was trying to come back. They seemed afraid some one might steal the mission. The Spirit could not work. Besides they had organized now fast and hard, and I had not joined their organization. And so it is largely today. Sign on the dotted line or we cannot trust you. We affiliate only with those carrying our papers. “Pentecost” took that thing out of us. Why go back to it? All who belong to the different divisions in the Pentecostal work today have not the spirit of division. But God would hold us to the ideal of the “one body.”

The Lord showed me my place of hiding. I determined to follow Him. That is the place of power. Fear nothing but God, and obey Him. I spoke many times at Eighth and Maple, and at Azusa, and also at the Alley Mission in Pasadena, exhorting them to more earnestness, and to walk in the Spirit. I had suffered much in prayer in the bringing forth of this work, and felt I had a right to admonish them. Our great battle from the beginning was with fleshly religious fanatics, purporting to be of the Spirit of God._______

Blog editor: This chapter is not proof-read and may contain small spelling errors.

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