Luke Miller

Luke Miller

Birth
Limestone County, Alabama, USA
Death 1 Feb 1962 (aged 57)
Florida, USA
Burial Unknown
Memorial ID 72982977 · View Source
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On February 1 the beloved evangelist, Luke Miller, died of a heart attack. This ended the work of one of the best-known evangelists in the church. Baptized many years ago in Decatur, Ala., by Marshall Keeble, he devoted his life to the advancement of the church. In his years of service to the kingdom of God, he led about ten thousand souls into Christ. Those who heard him in meetings could see that he was powerful in his preaching. In one gospel meeting at Corsicana, Texas, he baptized two hundred sixteen persons. His book of sermons is widely read today. He was a good debater and he had many debates. He served churches in local work at Valdosta, Ga., Paris, Texas, St. Petersburg, Fla., and Port Arthur, Texas. While at Port Arthur he preached for thirteen and one-half years. With the help of the Thomas Boulevard congregation (then known as the Sixth Street church), he established many congregations among the colored people in Texas and Southern Louisiana. He loved young men and encouraged many to preach the gospel. As one of his sons who assisted him in many gospel meetings, I can say that although he is gone his work will continue to live. Funeral service was conducted in the church of Christ at Bradenton, Fla., where he lived. We join his wife in mourning his loss. -W.D. Sweet. Gospel Advocate, March 22, 1962, page 190.

MILLER'S SERMONS: A SERIES OF GOSPEL SERMONS DELIVERED AT AUSTIN,
by Miller, Luke

BOOK DESCRIPTION
1940. Paperback. 3. *Miller, Luke. Miller's Sermons: A Series of Gospel Sermons Delivered at Austin, Texas, October 21 to Nov. 1, 1940. Austin: Firm Foundation Publishing House, (c. 1940). 1st ed. 91p. Softcover in original blue wrapper. 20cm... According to the Biographical account at pages 4-7, this African American preacher and evangelist was born in Limestone County, Alabama. Inspired by Marshall Keeble, Miller felt called to preach and was involved with churches in Florida and Georgia before coming to Texas in 1932. He was called to Port Arthur Texas, in 1935 by a white Church of Christ and was still involved with that church when this book was published although it seems that much of his evangelistic work must have been done elsewhere. Miller died in 1962.

BIOGRAPHICAL
Luke Miller was born in Limestone County, near Belle Mina, Alabama, March 16, 1904. Having lost his father, his mother moved to Decatur when he was about six years old. There she reared him and sent him to school. He went as high as the eighth grade. His mother is a very religious woman, and her strict ways and manner in handling him, he says, was a blessing. When Luke was fourteen years of age, he joined the Primitive Baptist Church, the one his mother had raised him in. In his search for light and truth, he later became a member of the church that is called "The Sanctified Church." When he was seventeen years of age, Brother Marshall Keeble came to Decatur and preached the gospel as it is written. Brother Miller heard him one night, and says that he was convinced that that was what he had been looking for. The Grant Street Church of Christ (white) had Brother :Keeble to come to Decatur. Brother Miller says that he shall always be thankful that they did. He was baptized one very cold day in borrowed clothes because his mother had forbade his being baptized. There were only three colored members, Brother Fred Hewin, Robert Lee and Luke. These three met and studied, and worshipped for about a year when, because of work, the other two had to leave town. For nearly two years Brother Miller was alone. The nearest colored church was Huntsville. Alabama. He would go there as often as possible. When nineteen years old, he married Mattie Lee Ballentine, a girl whom he had known and loved for many years. She has proved a great blessing to him. Soon after their marriage, she obeyed the gospel, and another obeyed, making three to meet and worship. The three of them met in Luke's home , and it was there that he made his first talk with an audience of two, and he reports that was two too many. The white brethren gave him a number of good books, by such men as N. B. Hardeman , C. R. Nichol, T. B. Larimore, Joe Warlick, G. H. P. Showalter, and others. He began to study in earnest. He made up his mind to preach the gospel. Brother Miller's first sermon to an audience of any size, was in a meeting Brother Keeble was conducting in Florence, Alabama. He declares that he had studied hard and had a sermon that would have taken thirty minutes to deliver, but when he got up the crowd excited him, and he said it in three minutes. fie had forgotten the rest. Brother Keeble encouraged him very much, and whenever Keeble was anywhere near Decatur Luke would go, so he could get to talking in front of him. Brother Miller says Keeble's continued encouragement and advice made him grow. He used to hear him preach, and then go home and try to deliver ·the lesson just like he did. Brother Miller says he never did get it as good as Brother K~eble, and hasn't done so yet, but Keeble is still his pattern. During tho se days, when he was trying to learn to preach, he had to spend quite a bit and lose many days getting off to spend time with Brother Keeble in meetings. Not making much on the job he had, it soon was felt. His wife sacrificed very much and went without many things to help him preach the gospel. His first local work was in Florida. Brother Keeble had established churches in Tampa, Lakeland, and St. Petersburg, Florida, and recommended Luke to preach for these three churches. Young preachers were scarce then, but encouraged by his willingness to sacrifice and suffer, many young men began to preach the gospel. Several white churches helped in his support in Florida, including Central church in Nashville, Tennessee. Brother Miller' s next local work was in Valdosta, Georgia. He was recommended there by Brother Keeble. During the years he was with the Valdosta church, and the Florida church, he spent most of the summer months traveling with and leading songs for Brother Keeble. This was a great help to him. He learned much about preaching and evangelizing and met many people that have since called him for meetings. He moved from Valdosta, Georgia, to Paris, Texas, in 1932. In June of 1935 he was called to Port Arthur, Texas, by the white church of Christ. He is still working with this congregation. He says Brother O. C. Lambert and the Sixth Street Church encourage him very much. Besides doing local work, he has held many meetings in new fields being called and supported by white churches. The meetings have resulted in establishing twenty-three congregations, the largest of which was in Corsicana, Texas, with two hundred eighteen baptisms, and five from the Christian Church. Altogether Brother Miller has baptized about two thousand, and of this Brother Miller says: "To God be all the praise." He has held a number of meetings with churches already established. A splendid number of preachers have developed in the congregations he has labored with, and these are now preaching for churches. Among them are Shelton, T. W. Gibbs, Wm. Whittaker, John O. Williams, James Cooper, Laredo Brown, Jim Aldridge, Hubert Baker, Matt Murry, J. L. Goodman, Rufus Carvain, John Mitchell, John Henry Clay, Robert Simmons, L. C. Bradley, Lonnie Smith, and a number of others. These men are doing a great work. Luke takes no credit for the work they are doing. He is just happy to have been with them in the beginning of their work, and to have helped them get started off. "I shall always be thankful," he says, "to the many white brethren that have called and supported me both in local and evangelistic work. Without their aid and encouragement, I feel that I could not have done what little I have done. Also to the many colored brothers and sisters who have helped and stood by me these years, I am thankful. Brethren, pray for me." Brother Miller's present address is 1034 Titsingh Avenue, Port Arthur, Texas. Austin, Texas, November 10, 1940.


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  • Created by: Tom Childers
  • Added: 7 Jul 2011
  • Find A Grave Memorial 72982977
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Luke Miller (16 Mar 1904–1 Feb 1962), Find A Grave Memorial no. 72982977, ; Maintained by Tom Childers (contributor 46515204) Unknown.