About Finis Jennings Dake
TRUE STORY OF A MAGNIFICENT GIFT
by Finis J.
rejected Christianity in my youth, until I found some believers who lived the
life they professed. Faced with truth backed by Christian example, I knew I had
to make a decision. After weeks of struggling with my conscience, I chose to
serve God the rest of my life and do His will, whatever it may be. I had the
witness of the Spirit with my spirit that I was a child of God, the blood of
Christ having cleansed me from all unrighteousness. I was baptized in water
as an outward symbol of an inward work of Christ in my life.
But I was more hungry for God than ever before. I cried out for a
closer walk with Him, to be filled with the Holy Spirit. I spent hours in
prayer and worship, seeking God.
After three months of wholehearted surrender, I received a great
anointing of the Spirit. A cool and rushing wind came over me. From the
depths of my being came the “rivers of rushing water” that Jesus promised in
John 7:37-39. Torrents of praise began to flow from my lips as I received in
measure what the disciples had on the day of Pentecost. It was May, 1920, and
I was seventeen years old.
I was immediately able to quote hundreds of Scriptures without
memorizing them. I also noticed a quickening of my mind to know what chapters
and books various verses were found in. Before conversion, I had not read one
full chapter of the Bible. This new knowledge of Scripture was a gift to me,
for which I give God the praise.
From the time of this special anointing until now, I have never had to
memorize the thousands of scriptures I use in teaching. I just quote a verse
when I need it, by the anointing of the Spirit.
I then began to study the Bible without ceasing, and have now spent
around a hundred thousand hours digging into the wealth of its teachings.
From the first of my studies, I found the Bible to be simple and
clear. Daily study, coupled with my ability to quote the Bible as I yielded
to the Spirit, helped me “rightly divide the truth” (2 Tim. 2:15). Difficult
passages in prophecy and elsewhere did not seem mystifying to me, for what
was unclear in one passage was made clear by other scriptures on the same
subject. Hours of study provided a rich storehouse to draw from as I yielded
to the Spirit. When I was eighteen I enrolled in a Bible Institute to prepare
for the ministry. I soon learned that one must either believe what the Bible
alone teaches, or spend his life wrestling with the confusing and varied
interpretations of men. The professors did not agree among themselves on some
of the basic truths, and a number even disagreed with what the Bible plainly
stated on certain subjects.
I thus became acquainted with a perplexing array of doctrines. Some of
them were in agreement with Scripture and could be proved when all passages
dealing with the subject were examined. But others turned out to be
“hand-me-down” theology from a former generation of preachers, many of whom
were great in spite of their doctrinal errors.
I had to decide either to respect my gift and depend on God and the
knowledge of the Word He had given me as a guide to determining scriptural
truth, or go along with the crowd.
My decision was firm. I vowed to the Lord never to teach one thing I
could not prove with two or three plain Scriptures, agreeing with Paul that
“in the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established” (2
Cor. 13:1). Believing also that “no prophecy . . . is of any private
interpretation” (to be interpreted without comparison with other Scriptures,
2 Pet. 1:20), I reasoned that the Bible is God’s Word in human language and
means exactly what it says. Any interpretation which is out of harmony with
what is plainly written must be rejected as the theory of man.
It was a big decision for a lad, and cost me a few friends now and
again — friends who preferred to listen to almost anyone who had gray hair,
rather than a youth just emerging from his teens. But my hair is gray too
now, yet my decision remains the same. The prophecies, promises, admonitions
and doctrines are there in the Bible the same as they were when I began
quoting them years ago. They are in plain language, understandable by anyone
who can read and will take time to look up an occasional word in the dictionary.
My early decision has paid off in many ways, one of them being letters
I receive now and again from someone who says, “I didn’t have much use for
your teaching years ago, but now I find your writings a great help and
inspiration.” Such testimonies are my reward for carrying out my early vows
to teach exactly what the Bible says on all subjects it deals with.
If I have inspired you to study God’s Word with an open mind; if I
have influenced you to take Scriptures accurately; and if my testimony has
made you hungry for God, His Word and His anointing, then I have accomplished
the purpose I had in mind — that of blessing your life!”