John Vernon McGee was born in Hillsboro, Texas, in 1904. Dr. McGee remarked, "When I was born and the doctor gave me the customary whack, my mother said that I let out a yell that could be heard on all four borders of Texas!" His Creator well knew that he would need a powerful voice to deliver a powerful message.
As a student pastor, Dr. McGee's first church was located on a red clay hill in Midway Georgia. After completing his education (earning his A.B. from Southwestern University in Memphis, Tennessee; his B.D. from Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Georgia; his Th.M. and Th.D. from Dallas Theological Seminary in Dallas, Texas), and after pastoring Presbyterian churches in Decatur, GA, Nashville, TN, and Cleburne, TX, he and his wife came west, settling in Pasadena, where he accepted a call to the Lincoln Avenue Presbyterian Church. He recalls this period as the happiest in his life, with a young family and a young congregation whom he loved.
Dr. McGee's greatest pastorate was at the historic, Church of the Open Door in downtown Los Angeles, where he served from 1949 to 1970. Here he began a daily radio broadcast called "High Noon Bible Class" on a single station.
Dr. McGee began teaching Thru the Bible in 1967. After retiring from the pastorate, he set up radio headquarters in Pasadena, and the radio ministry expanded rapidly. Today the program airs on over 400 stations each day in the United States and Canada, is heard in more than 100 languages around the world and is broadcast worldwide via the Internet.
During his last few years failing health demanded the cancellation of many speaking engagements. This was extremely distressing to him. There was no recurrence of an earlier bout with cancer during this time, only a weakening heart. Back in 1965, after radical surgery, the doctors had given him 6 months to live. The Lord gave him 23 years.
Dr. McGee and the Board of Directors planned in advance how the program would continue in the event of Dr. McGee's homegoing. The message would remain the same and the "voice" of Thru the Bible Radio would continue to be Dr. McGee, through the use of the taped 5-year program, except for those foreign language broadcasts, where the producers use the printed 5-volume Bible study to translate and produce the program.
On the morning of December 1, 1988, a few minutes after a visit with the Associate Director of Thru the Bible, alert and in conversation centered around his concern for the continuance of the radio ministry, Dr. McGee fell asleep in his chair and quietly passed into the presence of his Savior.
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At the outset, I want to make a very sharp distinction: This message is for Christians only, and that is O-N-L-Y. Why? Because it is on the topic of Christian giving, and God never did ask a non-Christian to give one dime to Him or to His cause. We misrepresent God when we make people believe that He will take a gift from just anyone; He will not. ...read
Ai and I
The worst enemy you have is not your neighbor nor your bill collector, he is not your severest critic nor your most aggressive competitor. We can identify him without calling in the
FBI to determine who he is. In fact, I trust we can apprehend and condemn him very shortly, thus giving you a victory over him. Your worst enemy is sitting in the seat ...read
America Needs a Declaration of Dependence
Isaiah lived in a time of tension that bore many striking similarities to these days in which we live. Catastrophic events and cataclysmic judgments were taking place in rapid succession and on a global scale. The international scene presented a crisis on many fronts. There was upheaval in the social order. Lawlessness abounded on every hand.
A ne ...read
America Needs to be Thankful
The longest prayer recorded in the Scripture was offered by Solomon at the dedication of the temple.
And he stood before the altar of the Lord in the presence of all the congregation of Israel, and spread forth his hands; for Solomon had made a bronze platform, of five cubits long, and five cubits broad, and three cubits high, and had set it in th ...read
An X-Ray of the Cross
My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? Why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring? O my God, I cry in the daytime, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent. But thou art holy, O thou who inhabitest the praises of Israel. Our fathers trusted in thee; they trusted, and thou didst deliver them. Th ...read
Armageddon: What? Where? When?
Armageddon has caught the imagination of man. Every great war or threat of war always raises the awesome image of Armageddon. Again and again that word occurs in the literature of the world. After World War I, for instance, a motion picture was made called "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse," which depicted World War I as being the final war of m ...read
Back to Bethel
And God said unto Jacob, Arise, go up to Bethel, and dwell there: and make there an altar unto God, who appeared unto thee when thou fleddest from the face of Esau, thy brother. Then Jacob said unto his household, and to all that were with him, Put away the foreign gods that are among you, and be clean, and change your garments. And let us arise, a ...read
Balaam: A Prophet for Profit
Across the pages of Scripture march men and women from all walks of life. The Holy Spirit customarily gives a camera-sharp picture of each one of them. There is generally a clear delineation of character that the Holy Spirit gives to us in a few words.
There are some exceptions to this. There are those whose character is fuzzy. Darkness hides thei ...read
Behind the Black Curtain in the Upper Room
In the Upper Room our Lord began immediately to deal with those who were His own in a way He had never dealt with them or anyone else before. He began to talk about things He had never before talked about. He was attempting to lift their thinking to a high plane - because these men were frightened.
They knew something tremendous was in the offing ...read
Better Than Bethlehem
We are approaching a crisis Christmas and a new year filled with ominous and threatening clouds. We are losing our liberties one by one. Our religious liberty especially is in imminent danger of being lost.
In spite of the black background, never has the Christian been afforded such a marvelous opportunity, an open door for witnessing t ...read
Born of a Daughter of David
In former years one of the most enjoyable experiences of life was to take a vacation by touring the country, as it was called in those days. You'd get the old car greased, fill it with gas, take along two or three extra tires, load in the family, get a road map, then start down some highway, following the markers as you went along. There was nothin ...read
Changing Bitter Waters to Sweet
So Moses brought Israel from the Red Sea, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur; and they went three days in the wilderness, and found no water. And when they came to Marah, they could not drink of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter; therefore the name of it was called Marah. And the people murmured against Moses, saying, What shall ...read
The credit card has become the symbol of American business. It is the fraternity pin of the average American. It is the passport to plenty for a great many today. Anything can be bought with a credit card, from a gallon of gas to a ten gallon hat, from a sandwich to a chain of motels, from a night's lodging to a subdivision in Southern California.
I just threw into the wastebasket a magazine from a so called Christian organization which told about all the things that you can get through prayer. The article promised that God will make you prosperous, that He will give you health and that He will give you everything. My friend, God is not a glorified Santa Claus! But our God is moving in a ver ...read
Christmas in the Home of Abraham?
Every great truth of the Scripture that is given to us in full-blown flower in the New Testament is given to us in germ and in bud back in the Old Testament. And practically everything is given to us in the Book of Genesis. The remarkable thing about Genesis is this budding teaching concerning Bethlehem, the virgin birth of Christ, and His coming i ...read
Christmas is God Shining In
The first time that Christ came to this earth was not two thousand years ago at Bethlehem, but some six thousand years ago in the Garden of Eden.
An abnormal emphasis has been placed on the birth of Christ at Bethlehem. This emphasis has given us a rather warped conception of the thing that God would have us see in its proper perspective. We will ...read
Confidence, Certainty, and Cheer
When Paul the apostle arrived in the city of Philippi to begin his ministry in Europe, he received very bad treatment. The entire city seemed to turn against him. He was arrested, seems to have been tried by the citizens of the town, was delivered into the hands of a jailer, beaten within an inch of his life, and put into the very darkest part of t ...read
Daniel: Choosing to Stand Alone
We know more of the personal history and the private life of Daniel than we do of any of the other prophets. He is introduced to us as a teenage boy, probably 15 to 17 years of age, when he was carried away as a captive and transplanted from his home in Israel to a foreign country, a heathen land. For over sixty years he lived in that dissolute cou ...read
Darkness and Light: The Day of the Lord
The Day of the Lord was the high hope and the far-off goal of the Old Testament. It was that toward which the entire Old Testament program was moving. Everything in time and creation looked forward to and moved toward that day. The Old Testament closed without it being realized, and up to today the Day of the Lord has not yet come.
The Old Testame ...read
Death of a Little Child
In Memory of
She was so small, but her influence was so great;
her life was short, but the memory of her is long.
"And Jesus called a little child unto him..." (Matthew 18:2)
"Let little children to come unto me, and forbid
them not; for of such is the kingdom of God." (Luke 18:16)
Printed in the United States of Amer ...read