This message became available from the Trinity Pulpit in 2014, fifty years after it was first preached. It is obvious from listening to it that it was a part of the Sermon on the Mount series, and should be placed after message No. 23. A search through the exhaustive printed title list of Trinity Pulpit materials, published in 1989, and some subsequently-produced electronic catalogs, seem to indicate that it has never been included as a part of the Sermon on the Mount series, or made available as a separate single message. Pastor Martin himself entitles it "What Jesus Christ Believed and Taught About Hell", and searching the catalogs with these keywords did not provide any matches. It is possible it has been available under another title, although one would think that the word "Hell" would be included in whatever title might have been chosen for it. It is not known why this message was removed from the series.
Whatever the case — be this a never-before-released sermon, or a relatively unknown sermon — we are glad to make this treasure available now, below. It has been designated "23a", so that all of the subsequent messages (which have been numbered the way they are for the last 50 years) will not need to be changed.
23a) What Jesus Christ Believed and Taught About Hell
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A few extra moments on the front and back ends of the sermon reveal a few interesting historical facts:
- An organ was used at this time, rather than a piano
- The Trinity Hymnal was not being used at this time (the announced "Hymn 391" is No. 258 in the Trinity Hymnal)
- Only select stanzas from hymns were sung (this was never the case in later years)
- Pastor Martin was the "song leader" (apparently), since he obviously remains standing in front of the microphone while singing (this was never the case in later years)
- his good singing voice (aided by his early training as a tenor) can be clearly heard here (this can only be heard very faintly in a few of the hymns which we have available here)
- The King James Version was still in use during the preaching (in later years he switched to the 1901 American Standard Version)
- Prayers were in Elizabethan English (this was not the case shortly hereafter)
- The congregation had obviously not yet heard his Amen in Public Worship series, since there is silence after the closing prayer
- At this time there was a 6 PM gathering of "young people's groups", and then, after that
- there was a 7 PM evening worship service (subsequent years had only one evening service at 6 PM)