The Herald of Hope ministry has been raised up by God to maintain a clear testimony to the Biblical truth of the premillennial return of the Lord Jesus Christ. It owes much to the ministry of faithful men such as William Lamb who pastored Burton Street Baptist Tabernacle at Woolloomooloo, Sydney, from 1911 to 1926. During 1920 Lamb published the prophetic paper, The Advent Herald, until he was called to higher service in 1944, at which time the publication ceased to be printed.At this time there was great interest in Bible prophecy as the nations were convulsed by WWI followed by the Great Depression. When Israel became a nation in 1948 in fulfilment of Ezekiel’s prophecy (Ezek.36) there was a realization that the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ was approaching.
In the early part of the 20th century Burton Street Tabernacle became a centre where Second Advent Conventions were regular events and William Lamb distributed tracts and books to spread the message of the Lord’s return.
After retiring from the pastorate Lamb travelled widely preaching to large audiences in all States of the Commonwealth, New Zealand, Britain and in the United States of America. Many souls were won to Christ and those who were touched by his ministry continued to proclaim the message of the premillennial return of Jesus Christ.
A group of pastors, whose lives had been blessed by William Lamb’s ministry, published the first edition of The Herald of Hope magazine in February 1948; and its publication has continued every two months since then proclaiming a message of hope to all who are, “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;” (Titus 2:13).
The first President of the editorial committee was Evangelist John G Ridley who had been won to Christ by William Lamb before going to WWI where he suffered serious injuries on the battlefields of France; and was also awarded the Military Cross for bravery.
R.M.Leghorn, who had pastored Hurstville Baptist Church Sydney before being called to Burton Street Tabernacle, and Russell Ecob who became pastor of Hurstville Baptist Church in 1945 joined with other men of like faith, to continue the task of holding Second Advent Conventions. A conference ministry across the nation continued by Pastors Leghorn, Betteridge, Ecob and Thitchener and when these retired, M.A. Butler, John Farr, Peter Jackson, and John Ecob travelled extensively speaking at Conferences in Australia, Fiji, New Zealand, Philippines, Burma, Hong Kong and South Africa and stirring the Lord’s people to look for the “blessed hope” of the Rapture of the Church. In recent years Eric Rees and Vince Wall have been added to the team.
Thus, while the Herald of Hope has a mandate to warn sinners to flee from the wrath to come, it also has a message of comfort to believers that before God’s wrath falls on an unsuspecting world, “ . . .the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” (I Thessalonians 4:16-17)
This is the message for the last days and we purpose by God’s grace to proclaim it while God enables us.