JOHN WESLEY HUGHS (Founder of Asbury and Kingswood Colleges)
I lived an enthusiastic, happy, regenerated life for thirteen years, working constantly in
revival and preparing myself for college, and as a college and university student, and a member of the Kentucky Conference. I was always under conviction for what was known then as “a deeper work of grace,” but now known clearly to mean the blessing of entire sanctification. I did not know what my trouble was for I constantly hungered and thirsted after righteousness. The Holy Spirit, always true to his office work, kept me under constant conviction or the fullness of the Gospel of the grace of God. But the doctrine and experience of holiness, were not taught then, so far as I knew. Hence I remained in constant anxiety as to what my hunger meant.
In the providence of God, Doctor W. B. Godbey wrote me more than once, desiring to hold
a meeting for me, but I heard he was a crank, or half crazy, and did not answer his letters. But he came anyway and volunteered his services to hold a meeting, against my own personal wishes. But after much prayer and thought, I concluded to keep him and let the meeting go on.
He preached day and night, almost all the time on “inbred sin and holiness” which I and my
people thought was a mistake, but proved in the end that he was God-led. Wife, myself and people gave him a careful hearing as did many of the community, resulting in a gracious revival. Had quite a number of clear conversions, among them was my wife, who had been a constant seeker for about two years.
One night he preached on Pentecost from the text, “And they were all filled with the Holy
Ghost.” I was not a backslider, but a burdened Christian praying and hoping for a deeper work of grace, and the salvation of my people. The power of the Holy Ghost rested upon the preacher, his message and the people. The altar was filled with penitent sinners, crying to God for mercy and while I was talking to a penitent in the audience, I felt I must talk to the people, and as I began the Holy Ghost fell on me and took away my consciousness.
I sat down on a bench near by and when I came to consciousness I was saying, “Lord, it is
enough. I can bear no more.” I then believed and still believe that the power of God was so great, it was all my nerves could bear. I heard Brother Godbey say, “Glory to God, Brother Hughes is sanctified.” I was thus wholly sanctified at Chaplin, Ky., 9 P. M., Dec. 30, 1882.
Source: “The Autobiography of John Wesley Hughes” with Biographical Contributions by Andrew Johnson
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HOW THEY ENTERED CANAAN (A Collection of Holiness Experience Accounts) Compiled by Duane V. Maxey
Vol. I — Named Accounts