(Founder of the Free Methodist Church)

February 9, 2017 // Story


(Founder of the Free Methodist Church)

  1. T. Roberts was born on a farm in western New York in July of 1823. As an unconverted

young man, he chose the practice of law as his desired profession, and in 1842 he went to Little
Falls, New York in pursuit of that career. His parents interceded for his salvation, and after an
absence of two years he returned home, where he was converted in 1844. Of his conversion, he

“… As the light of the Spirit shone, I gave up one thing after another; but I clung to my

profession. For three weeks I pled with God to convert me, but to let me have my choice in the
business I would follow. Many who had power with God prayed for me; but I had to yield. Christ
demanded an unconditional surrender; I made it. The joys of pardon and peace flowed into my
soul. My cup was full, my happiness was unspeakable.”

God’s choice for Benjamin Titus Roberts was not the practice of law, but the preaching of

the gospel. He answered that call, and after a time of preparation he entered the ministry of the
Methodist Church. In September of 1848 he joined the Genesee Conference of the Methodist
Episcopal Church at Buffalo, New York, and was appointed to the Careyville circuit. During this
conference year he was married, and the next conference year he was stationed at Pike.

The poor spiritual condition of the church at Pike was a source of discouragement to him,

but it was during this time that he was sanctified wholly at the Collins camp-meeting near the end
of that conference year. Of this second crisis experience, he wrote:

“… Two paths were distinctly marked out before me. I saw that I might be a popular

preacher, gain applause, do but little good in reality, and at last lose my soul; or I might take the
narrow way, declare the whole truth as it is in Jesus, meet with persecution and opposition, but see
a thorough work of grace go on and gain heaven. Grace was given me to make the better choice. I
deliberately gave myself anew to the Lord, to declare the whole truth as it is in Jesus, and to take
the narrow way. The blessing came. The Spirit fell on me in an overwhelming degree. I received a


power to labor such as I had never felt before. This consecration has never been taken back. I have
many times had to humble myself before the Lord for having grieved His Spirit. I have been but an
unprofitable servant. It is by grace alone that I am saved. Yet the determination is fixed to obey the
Lord and take the narrow way, come what will.”

Source: “Master Workmen” by Richard R. Blews

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(A Collection of Holiness Experience Accounts)
Compiled by Duane V. Maxey

Vol. I — Named Accounts

Interchurch Holiness Convention

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