Alliance News Feed – “Third Fold” Roots
If you’ve been in the Alliance family for a little while, you’ll likely recognize the “Third Fold” in the Fourfold Gospel as “Christ our Healer.” Since our founding in 1887, Alliance people have heard a multitude of accounts of Jesus’ divine healing—and many of us have personally experienced supernatural healing that comes mysteriously and exclusively through Him.
But have we all heard the story of the moment in a forest at Old Orchard, Maine, where our founder, A. B. Simpson, had his own personal healing encounter? This experience forever sealed this Third Fold into The Alliance’s foundation.
It is a story worthy of remembering and passing along, from generation to generation.
In A. B. Simpson’s own words, from The Word, The Work, and The World, September, 1886, during his opening address to The Old Orchard Convention:
I remember well how much this place has meant for me in blessing. I came here five years ago during a convention held by Dr. Cullis, of Boston, to enjoy the incomparable shore, the fine air and these lovely woods. It was not in the convention, however, but alone, out in the fine woods that the Lord met me as never before, and completely changed my whole life. He spoke to me in healing, He led me out into new fields of service and made Himself gloriously real to me in every way, and I feel more like being still this first day in dear Old Orchard and getting again under that old pine tree alone with Him, than of saying much to you in the way of instruction.
Dr. Cullis, whom Simpson mentions specifically, was a Christian physician and director of a tuberculosis sanatorium who prayed for his patients as well as treating them medically. Because of the remarkable recoveries he witnessed, he later began a healing ministry in addition to his medical practice.
As he referenced, Simpson’s thoughts and spirit regarding healing were greatly expanded at Dr. Cullis’ convention, where he heard more than 200 accounts of miraculous healing. He later said, “I had believed that there were cases of healing—but the facts did not convince me . . . They sent me to the Bible to settle the matter. If it was true, it was the most stupendous thing in life. And so I went to my room and took my Bible, thinking, ‘If that is here, I will stand on it; if not, I will let it go. If it is true, I will accept it, cost what it will’” (“Old Orchard Convention Supplement,” The Word, The Work, and The World, July/August 1887).
A. B. Simpson found the truth of divine healing in God’s Word and committed himself whole-heartedly to it, even enduring several tests of his faith—which he bore confidently and steadfastly. Behind his experiences of salvation and the infilling of the Holy Spirit, he described his healing as the third-greatest crisis of his life—one that dramatically changed his ministry for the rest of his life.
Source: Alliance News Feed – “Third Fold” Roots