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Chapter 30. The Off The Charts Church

May 2, 2010

Remember when Pentecostal teaching was off the charts?

Pentecost has a rich and full heritage. Today we are blessed with technology and electronics. A generation ago, there were no overhead projectors like we use today.

No one ever heard of a computer much less a  powerpoint. Chalk boards and Charts were common. Old time traveling Bible teachers often carried their charts with them. In numerous churches one could often see a wire running from wall to wall on the platform. Those wires were put in place to hang charts.

Most of the the men either hand painted their own charts or had someone else do it for them. Each was an original and unique.

I got to hear Brother A.W. Buie, Bro. Clyde Haney, Bro. Curts and my Father, Bro. Carl Ballestero teach from charts. While I am glad for the modern day advancements, part of me misses the old school.

Made by Bro. A.W. Buie Sr.

Bro. Clyde Haney

Bro. Frank Curts

Brother Curts was the author of the widely distributed book “The Tabernacle In The Wilderness”. This book described the foundation of the Tabernacle that God directed the Children of Israel to build as they journeyed though the wilderness on the way to their new home in Palestine. This book clearly showed the similarities between the Tabernacles and Jesus’ plan of salvation.
Brother Curts also became district superintendent for the state of Ohio as well as serving on the executive board of the International United Pentecostal Church with headquarters in St Louis Missouri.
In those early days of our church there were 13 members in the congregation that were full of enthusiasm but they had very little solid knowledge of the Bible. Then Brother Curts came and became their pastor he began to instill in the congregation a solid Bible teaching and knowledge. With this solid Bible knowledge, the church began to grow and reach out for other people who were seeking a way to reach God. By the time the church moved to 4828 Vine Street some members were going out to other communities to teach what thus says the word of God.
Through the teaching of His ministers, God was shaping and remodeling his people as quickly as we were remodeling buildings using Bible knowledge in accordance with 2 Timothy 2:15. Times change the appearance and purpose of many structures just as it changes people but the church held fast to its ideals and doctrines as described throughout the New Testament. The Message we preach today is still the same basic doctrine that the pioneers of our local church assembly preached under the direction of Brother Curts. This message is the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ and the soon coming of Jesus again to catch his bride “The Church” away to meet him in the air so shall we for ever be with him. This message is described in 1 Thes. 4:14-18. Upon this Bible belief the church in Cincinnati was born and remains firm today in its beliefs.

(Copied from their website. To read more, click on the link.)
http://www.firstap.org/history.shtml

Bro. Carl Ballestero

These were the days when Pentecostal teaching was off the charts. Literally. Would I like to go back and visit some old time Bible classes taught from a chart? In a heart beat!

This Is Home Missions.

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. Marian June Davis permalink
    May 3, 2010 7:21 am

    I like the picture of your Dad. I help my Dad make a chart. We used crayons. We stretched it on an upstairs bedroom wall. another little bit of history. Bro. Curts used to be in Indianapolis when he was young and was a buddy of my Dad. Bishop Lewis had a hugh chart that went from one side of the church to the other. An interesting Blog.

  2. May 3, 2010 8:07 am

    Also remembering the chart ministries of Bro. S.G. Norris (at A.B.I.,) and Bro. M.M. Hudson (in Michigan). They were unforgettable! Here are some of the advantages of teaching with charts: 1.) instant, visual, review incorporated into every lesson, 2.) tantalyzing glimpses of what was to come, and, 3.) Scriptural references constantly available, allowing efficient note-taking.

  3. Randy Stanton permalink
    May 3, 2010 10:30 am

    Bro. Ballestero, Wow you took me back to some of those days in my child hood memories. I remember Bro. Ivy, my grandfather J.H. Stanton, and many others. Revivals in those days might be 7 days of off the chart teaching followed up with 7 days of fasting and prayer. Yes I agree, I love the new technology. But those off the chart teaching days put something special in you. I remember sitting through many of Bro. Dallas Meffords 1/1/2 hour teachings concerning the tabernacle plan and the Blood or the Godhead. I still owe him a debt of gratitude for those marathon teaching sessions. Thank God for those off the chart teachings.

    Bro. Stanton

  4. Matt Gaines permalink
    May 3, 2010 4:31 pm

    I love the old Bible class days. I think we live in the “TV episode” generation, not that I have or condone TV, where catastrophic events are encountered and solved in 30 minutes. I think saints want the preacher to follow the same M.O. I remember Elder R.C. Cavaness teaching for 2 1/2-3 hours and nobody batted an eye.

  5. Irvin Fields permalink
    May 4, 2010 2:15 pm

    I well remember those days. My brother Kenneth Fields was a great one to use charts. Search for Truth was used, but Brother Gray’s Seven Men and Two Natures were his favorite for new converts. I remember a Mexican convert in the 70’s who wanted to teach SFT to his friends who couldn’t speak English. So we devised a plan to make the charts in Spanish. (This was before SFT was printed in Spanish). He did the artwork and I did lettering. It was time consuming, so we would make the charts for one lesson at a time and he would teach it to his friends. Very few of us today would have the kind of commitment to devote the time needed for such a venture. But it paid off and was very effective.

  6. James Wilson permalink
    June 25, 2010 3:53 pm

    Thoroughly enjoyed this article! I just recently found a copy of The Tabernacle in The Wilderness. I was reminded of this book by the passing of G.A. Mangun. The one time that I had the priveledge of meeting him, he encouraged me to consume and practice the teaching from this book. I found this interesting, considering that I’ve grown up in what was F.E. Curts’ church. I also have one of the original charts that Pastor Curts taught from. Thank you for reminding me of their pursuit of truth.
    Stay Blessed,
    JW

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