Wednesday, January 17
We can learn from the saints that have preceded us. A.B. Simpson is one of them. Some of my older readers will remember that he wrote a lot of hymns—Balm in Gilead, Step by Step, The Regions Beyond, and others. But he did a lot more than write hymns. He was born in Canada in 1843 of Calvinistic Scottish parents with Puritan convictions. As a young man he was greatly influenced toward world wide evangelism by the reading about John Geddie’s work in one of the New Hebrides Islands. It was said of him that when he arrived there, there were no Christians, and when he left years later there were no heathen. His parents encouraged him to be a preacher, and though he wasn’t too keen on that, he went to Knox College at the age of 14 to prepare for the ministry. He was a superb student and by the time he finished college, he was highly regarded as a preacher, and was called to pastor the largest Presbyterian church in Hamilton. One day, while reading a book by Walter Marshall entitled “Gospel Mystery of Salvation,” he was struck by the statement “The first good work you will ever perform is to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.” That so convicted him that he knelt down in his office and committed himself to Christ. That was his conversion experience. Simpson’s life would never be the same.