Gotta Serve Somebody, God Fearing Beer Drinking- Part 6

There is a line of the Guinness genealogical path that has been deeply committed to God.  It’s the descendants of John Grattan Guinness who was Arthur’s youngest son.  It has continued through the years and spurred a book written by Frederic Mullally called, “The Silver Salver: The Story of the Guinness Family.”  The book almost makes the rest of the clan look like rogue pagans. In reality, however the family was pretty much a God fearing Guinness story all together.  The Reformers changed the artificial lines between what was sacred and what was secular and showed that men were sent into the world by God to use their God-given skills to His glory.  This Protestant work ethic can be found all throughout the Guinness line beginning with the greatly reformed and faithful original Arthur Guinness and on through his descendants. They looked at their craft of brewing as being done as a holy offering because it was a craft they pursued within the service of the Lord.  They certainly never saw themselves as secular.  They looked upon themselves as having a calling. They were in God’s ministry of industry and trade.  They performed the work with the Reformation ideal that everything they did was done for God. They strived to please God with all they did.

There was of course a line of Guinness’s that were in-fact missionaries and ministers but we shouldn’t look at them as any more connected to God than the others. The great truth of Christianity is that a banker or a baker can serve just as important a role for God as a priest or pope. So the Guinness story has a base of Christianity and shows that spirituality was involved in their success.  It was the center of all the good they have done in the world.

HenryI would like to introduce the youngest son of the first Arthur.  To make a long story short he grew up and joined the army.  While John Grattan Guinness was in the army and in foreign lands he heard the Christian truth from men that he admired. He heard it from military men that fought mightily by day and worshipped Christ by night. They shared their faith with Captain John Guinness while together and John wrote home that he had become “born again.”  John married and he and his new wife became one as husband and wife and also in spiritual matters.  John returned home in 1824 sick and exhausted after a number of difficult and trying years.  His wife returned with him but died two years after. John tried to work in the family business which was also in the whiskey business at the time.  Having become an evangelical he was now a teetotaler, drank no alcohol and believed all men should do the same so John resigned from his position at the brewery.

 John met a widow named Jane Lucretia D’Esterre who also had a rough past and had found faith in Jesus Christ during a sermon at St. George’s Church in Dublin. The love between the two them became a cure for wounds life had hit them with. They married in 1829 and the first five years a happy life. In 1835 when John was 52 and Jane was 38 they had a son together.   His name was Henry.  Henry Grattan Guinness was a gift from God while his parents were in their later years.  He became such a man of God and full of faith that he would be mentioned with the likes of Dwight Moody and Charles Spurgeon as one of the greatest preachers of the day. He had a soul searching life as all young men do but when Christ found him this is what he wrote, “The future was lighted with hope. The gates of glory and immortality opened to my mental vision and there shone before me an interminable vista of pure and perfect existence in the life to come. It was the marriage of the soul; the union of the creature in appropriating and self-yielding love with Him who is uncreated eternal love.”  He was a man on fire for Christ. On his 21st birthday he wrote in his diary, “my only passion is to live preaching and to die preaching; to live and die in the pulpit; to preach to perishing sinners till I drop down dead.” He became such a great preacher that in 1857 he was preaching at Moorfields Tabernacle in London which had been George Whitfield’s home church. He went on to preach in France, Switzerland, Wales and Scotland bearing much fruit. He eventually returned to Dublin with much acclaim.  It was a Guinness who was now drawing national acclaim during a time when all the well-known, “Protestant preachers of the time were weighted against each other like professional boxers.”

Henry became one of the best known preachers in the world. He had incredible success in the lands north of Ireland and then he toured through the United States.  It was a time when the U.S was troubled over slavery and states’ rights.  He preached 9 sermons a week for many months.  Exhausted he returned to England for some rest and while preaching at a church he met Fanny Fitzgerald.  They were married on October 2, 1860. Although he felt he was now with his soul mate the following years were difficult and lined with turmoil and opposition. This was during the time when he took an antislavery and anti-alcohol stance. Still he preached on while travelling the world.

There was turning point in the Guinness family as Henry joined Hudson Taylor and trained missionaries in England to join Taylor in China. They began training school called Stepney Institute. The school later became known as the East London Institute for Home and Foreign Missions. Before long the support was so strong that land and buildings were donated to become Harley College.  The college was so successful it became a model for Moody Bible College in the United States.Harley College

Henry became an accomplished author as well. He wrote the best-selling book, “The Approaching End of the Age in Light of History, Prophecy and Science” as an answer to Darwin.  His work earned him the Doctor of Divinity and also resulted in is being elected to the Royal Astronomical Society.  He wrote more than 20 books and among them was, “Light for the Last Days,” published in 1886. It was a prophetic writing that came true and he also in that writing predicted the 1948 event when Israel once again became a nation. Henry was not alive to enjoy the pleasure of the role his writings played because he died in 1910 as a very revered man. Henry’s children all went on to do great things for God and the long line of the faithful Guinness’s would continue.  The grandchildren yielded Christian ministers, missionary medical doctors, Christian schoolmasters, Royal Air Force chaplains and missionaries to Asia to name a few.

How is it that ten of Arthur Guinness’s children would have a birth-line of devoted Christians that would move nations due to their faith?  Could it have been something that began within the very first Arthur Guinness’s heart? Could it have been fostered by those early Sunday schools? Whatever it was and is, it continues through time. A historian wrote, “The Guinness family had the brewers and the bankers, but neither of them could match, in adventurousness and energy, the deeds of the ‘Grattan’ Guinness’s, spurred as they were not by materialistic ambition but by a deeply felt, inherited faith in what they believe to be the civilizing power of the Bible.

This will end my review of “The search for, God and Guinness.”  Once again I recommend you read Mr. Mansfield’s book and fill in the details.Mansfield

Sorry for the length of this one, but in closing this last post reminded me of Bob Dylan’s song of which I will include his lyrics here:

“Gotta Serve Somebody”

You may be an ambassador to England or France
You may like to gamble, you might like to dance
You may be the heavyweight champion of the world
You may be a socialite with a long string of pearls.

But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes indeed
You’re gonna have to serve somebody,
It may be the devil or it may be the Lord
But you’re gonna have to serve somebody.

Might be a rock’n’ roll adict prancing on the stage
Might have money and drugs at your commands, women in a cage
You may be a business man or some high degree thief
They may call you Doctor or they may call you Chief.

But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes indeed
You’re gonna have to serve somebody,
Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord
But you’re gonna have to serve somebody.

You may be a state trooper, you might be an young turk
You may be the head of some big TV network
You may be rich or poor, you may be blind or lame
You may be living in another country under another name.

But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes
You’re gonna have to serve somebody,
Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord
But you’re gonna have to serve somebody.

You may be a construction worker working on a home
You may be living in a mansion or you might live in a dome
You might own guns and you might even own tanks
You might be somebody’s landlord you might even own banks.

But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes
You’re gonna have to serve somebody,
Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord
But you’re gonna have to serve somebody.

You may be a preacher with your spiritual pride
You may be a city councilman taking bribes on the side
You may be working in a barbershop, you may know how to cut hair
You may be somebody’s mistress, may be somebody’s heir.

But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes
You’re gonna have to serve somebody,
Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord
But you’re gonna have to serve somebody.

Might like to wear cotton, might like to wear silk
Might like to drink whiskey, might like to drink milk
You might like to eat caviar, you might like to eat bread
You may be sleeping on the floor, sleeping in a king-sized bed.

But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes indeed
You’re gonna have to serve somebody,
It may be the devil or it may be the Lord
But you’re gonna have to serve somebody.

You may call me Terry, you may call me Jimmy
You may call me Bobby, you may call me Zimmy
You may call me R.J., you may call me Ray
You may call me anything but no matter what you say.

You’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes indeed
You’re gonna have to serve somebody,
Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord
But you’re gonna have to serve somebody.

The Guinness’s chose to serve God.  Who do you serve?

May God be with you and bless you,

The Tubthumper

PS: One last post added by surprise.  CLICK HERE TO JUMP TO THE FINAL.

 

Leave a Reply