S. Titus (Methodist)

March 1, 2017 // Story


To the praise of Jesus I will give a short testimony of the manner in which I received “the

gift of power by faith.” I believe I have received the baptism of the Holy Ghost. A brief survey of
God’s dealings with me from the first, may be necessary to a full view of the manner in which I
have been led into this inestimable blessing. Dedicated prayerfully to God, and to the work of the
ministry in infancy, by a devoted Christian mother, who fled away, in great triumph, to her home
above, on a Sabbath morning, before I was three years old, I was left to grow up almost wholly
without religious training. I was powerfully awakened at the age of eighteen, while attending a
series of evening meetings, held by the various evangelical denominations in a country
school-house. Repeatedly I went to the altar with many tears and cries for salvation, but never felt
the deep turpitude of my sins till I had prayed many times in secret; then, while laboring in a field
alone, God met me, and gave me such horrible views of my sins, that I a seized with the most
wretched despair. While crying on my knees for mercy, in that lonely field, and feeling, that God
could not forgive so great a sinner, I thought of Jesus Christ a Saviour, and suddenly my great
burden of soul was gone and I arose and rejoiced greatly in God. The whole world seemed full of
His glory, especially the sun, shining in meridian splendor, seemed an image of my God. In looking
back on my terrible agonies and anguish, I have often felt I had a foretaste of the cup of the
damned. I prayed for powerful convictions of sin, and God sent an overwhelming flood upon me. I
would all could see sin as I saw it. God forgave me, but I have never been able to forgive myself.
The remembrance of my sins are still most grievous unto me. For two years I doubted my
conversion, on account of my former great wickedness. With much prayer these doubts were made
to disappear, while I was a student in the Hamilton Literary and Theological Seminary.

A few years afterwards I was led, to believe in the doctrine of entire sanctification, while

listening to a local1 preacher. I then sought most earnestly and successfully for this work in my
heart, as a qualification for usefulness and heaven. I was a licentiate in the Baptist Church, and
supplying, two small churches at this time, when God sanctified my soul. The word seemed clear
in its fruits, the change as great, or greater than at conversion, though I was a living Christian
before. I felt I had a new Bible, new power in preaching–and I must have a home with the


heavenly believers of this doctrine. My Baptist brethren opposed my preaching, the doctrine,
regarding me as fanatical. I joined the M. E. Church, and for nearly two years enjoyed this higher
life. A deliberately written form of entire consecration, often used, was of great assistance in my
efforts to reckon myself all the Lord’s. I afterwards spent a part of two years at Union College, and
nearly three in Union Theological Seminary, New York. Relying in a good degree for my support
on my own exertions, I was always hurried, and often neglected the thorough care of my soul,
while strenuously seeking, to store my mind with knowledge. The last year’s course in college, and
the first in the seminar, were crowded into one year. While in the seminary I was enabled to regain
the lost witness of my entire acceptance, through the precious personal influence of Dr. and Mrs.
Palmer. I felt then willing to do any work God had for me, even the hardest, and offered myself to
our Mission Board for the foreign field. Was accepted for China, but was providentially hindered
from entering on a work my heart was much set upon. For some years subsequently I enjoyed only
a part of the time this fullness. The greatest hindrance and cause of doubt, as a reluctance to its
profession. While at Lowville, my last charge, a weekly meeting, at the parsonage, for the
promotion of entire holiness, greatly strengthened me.

At the Rodman Camp-meeting, in August 1866, the witness of entire holiness was very

clearly renewed to me, and great liberty in preaching it afterwards. Still I shrank from a full
confession in public. A little band of lovers of entire holiness, on the adjacent Martinsburgh
charge, were a great blessing to me, and I hope I was also a blessing to them. A few on my own
charge seemed in love with this blessed doctrine. I came to Wolcott, my present charge, longing to
be wholly lost in the will of God. I was greatly troubled in view of my lack of that baptism of
power which I knew the Holy Spirit alone could confer. I had for a few months attentively read
Wesley’s sermons for my own spiritual good. My soul grew desperate; I felt I could hardly live
longer without a great baptism of fire and power.

On the 25th of August, having started for the Hannibal Camp-Meeting, I was prostrated

with erysipelas, in a malignant form, but my soul still agonized for the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
On the morning of the 31st of August, while many others, and the people at the Hannibal
Camp-Meeting, also, were engaged in special prayer for me, the long desired baptism of the Spirit
came sensibly upon me, in such an overwhelming, manner that it seem I never can doubt again. My
wife, engaged at work in another room, felt the same influence at the time. This was especially a
baptism of love. My fears were gone, my soul exulted in perfect triumph. My physical sufferings
increased, life was despaired of, will was made, presents given, and my funeral and burial
arrangements were completed. For days reason fled from its throne — but not my confidence in the
Saviour. When reason came again and health revived, my recovery seemed to me and to others to
be miraculous. I thought my tribulation and loss of flesh were that God might give me all things
new. The promises of the Gospel now fed and feasted me. Our hymns, especially the 538th and
498th, were all the time wafting my soul heavenward. I felt conscious of being sealed by the Holy
Ghost, and of possessing an earnest of my heavenly inheritance. I loved all God people with
indescribable delight. I felt all ambition — but to be useful — was gone. My spirit of hurrying, too,
was gone. I now ceased that self-tormenting scrutiny into motives, that looking back on the
imperfections of my labors, had been such a snare to me; all anxiety about the future, all — over
anxiety about even the cause of God, and felt that I continually gave all, and received all. My
peace became as a river, and so it continued. After having suffered a while, God has wonderfully
established, strengthened, and settled me. I no longer hoped I was wholly sanctified, I knew it; I


know it still. Bless the Lord! The blood of Jesus, that cleanseth perfectly; the baptism of the Spirit,
that confers power over all evil, and causeth us to glory in tribulation, I know has come upon me,
and I still boldly declare it. I have lost too much to keep silence longer. The whole work of Christ,
all the offices of the Spirit, yea the whole realm of truth has a new and ineffable charm to me. I
now see Pentecost to be God’s pattern of blessing. I felt and believed God was no respecter of
persons, the power that came on Benjamin Abbott, William Tennant, Mrs. President Edwards, and
so many of our fathers of Methodism, as for me, and now I know this in my own heart, to the
everlasting praise of a most gracious God. Now I feel all contentment, all peace, all love, all
humility. Am ready to do anything, be anything, live long or for a few days, labor anywhere, and
bear all manner of reproach, if only I may remain a habitation of God through the Spirit.

I suffered during my illness, what seemed many death, but I can never be grateful enough

for all this, as it cast me entirely on God. I yearned much for others to feel the same baptism, and it
seemed to me that many ministers, especially, were coming into this full liberty of the Gospel. The
effect of this baptism on my soul I can never fully describe. Bunyan’s Beulah was now mine. The
sunlight seemed like molten gold, every flower and leaf, and song of birds yea, all objects around
me, were full of the glory of God. Payson’s river of pleasure, on which his despairing spirit
seemed to float, was mine — that river of peace I still enjoy. My doubts and fears have fled away.
Difficult spiritual problems are now solved. A glorious revolution has been wrought in my feeling
in regard to life’s great aims. I must no live only to declare Christ’s power to save, to save now
and save to the uttermost All the Christian graces have been anew tested in a fiery manner; still I
have the victory. I am all the Lords, and only desire to be more and more filled with all the
fullness of God. “God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound
mind.” May this power, love and soundness, speedily be obtained by our whole Zion, a fit
qualification for her world-wide mission in this gainsaying, skeptical age.

Source: “Pioneer Experiences” by Phoebe Palmer

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

Vol. I — Named Accounts

Interchurch Holiness Convention

18931 Route 522

Beaver Springs, PA 17812

Phone: 570-658-1030