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John 8: 32

H A IronsideH A Ironside

 Henry (Harry) Allen Ironside (1876-10-14 - 1951-01-15) was a Bible teacher, preacher, pastor, and author in the late 19th century and early 20th century. H A Ironside was born on 1876-10-14 in Toronto to John and Sophia (Stafford) Ironside, who were both active in the Plymouth Brethren. At birth, Harry was thought to be dead, so the attending nurses focused their attention on Sophia, who was dangerously ill. Only when a pulse was detected in Harry, 40 minutes later, was an attempt made to resuscitate the infant. From a very early age, Ironside showed a strong interest in evangelical Christianity and was active in the Salvation Army as a teenager before later joining the Grant section of the Plymouth Brethren. In 1888 well-known evangelist Dwight L. Moody preached at a campaign in Los Angeles.This inspired Ironside, who hoped to also be able to preach to such crowds one day. In 1889, after a visit from evangelist Donald Munro, Ironside became convinced that he was not "born again", and so gave up preaching at his Sunday School, spending the next six months wrestling with this spiritual problem. After an evening of prayer in February, 1890, Ironside, at age 13, accepted Christ. As he is quoted as saying years later, "I rested on the Word of God and confessed Christ as my Savior." Ironside then returned to preaching, winning his first convert. Though he was taunted at school, he was undeterred from his mission to win souls.

In 1896, at 20, he moved to San Francisco, becoming associated with the Plymouth Brethren. While there, he began helping at British evangelist Henry Varley's meetings, and there met pianist Helen Shofield, daughter of a Presbyterian pastor in Oakland. The two soon married. In 1898, Ironside's mother died, and less than a year later, Harry and Helen's first son, Edmond Henry was born. The family moved across the bay to Oakland, where Harry resumed a nightly preaching schedule. They resided there until 1929. In 1903, Ironside accepted his first east-coast preaching invitation, but on returning, the family only had enough funds to make it as far as Salt Lake City, Utah, where he spent the next ten days doing street preaching. During this time, H A Ironside also began his career as a writer, publishing several bible commentary pamphlets. From 1916 to 1929, Ironside preached almost 7,000 sermons to over 1.25 million listeners. In 1918, he was associated with evangelist George McPherson, and in 1924 began preaching under the direction of the Moody Bible Institute. After a series of sermons presented at the The Moody Church in Chicago, he was invited to a one-year trial as head pastor there in 1929. Almost every Sunday that he preached there, the 4,000 seat church was filled to capacity. While there, he continued traveling to other US cities during the week for preaching engagements. In 1932, he expanded his travels internationally. Ironside preached the 1935 funeral of Billy Sunday at Moody Church. In 1938, he toured England, Scotland and Ireland, preaching 142 times to crowds of upwards of 2,000.



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