The doors of heaven opened Sunday for Pastor James Larry Hughes.
As we say goodbye to a great husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend, he is saying hello to the Almighty God that he loved and lived for. What we see as our saddest day is also his greatest victory. Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor can we imagine the joy he is receiving right now.
Larry had many talents. He was a mechanic, carpenter, sculptor, guitar player, singer, and song writer (usually making up the song as he sung it on stage). The list is too long to name them all. More than any of these he was a Pastor, preacher, and teacher.
Larry loved God’s Word. He was always reading the Bible or a book about the Bible from his vast library. He annotated each and every book. He wrote many notes, often writing them on papers that he placed in notebooks, books, and Bibles.
If you were talking to Larry you were talking about the Bible. He stood on God’s Word without compromise and without apology. He believed the apostolic doctrines taught by Peter and Paul. If they apostles taught it, Larry believed it. His favorite translation was the King James. His favorite topics were the Godhead and Salvation. Though, he taught everything from Creation to the End-Times.
He believed in giving many Scriptures as he taught, and he had them all memorized. He knew more Scripture than anyone I’ve ever met. He would give 10 verses where others would only give one.
His last teachings consisted of the divisions of the New Testament: The Gospels, the Acts of the Church, the epistles to the Church, and the book of Revelation.
He taught the four steps of salvation and he intended for all of his Church members to quote them:
- Knowing God. Believe on Jesus as the Scriptures say – that there is one God. “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD:” (Deu 6:4 KJV) And that he was manifest in flesh – Is. 9:6 “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” (Isa 9:6 KJV)
- To repent of our sins
- To be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins
- To be filled with the gift of the Holy Ghost with the sign or evidence of speaking in other tongues as Peter taught on the day of Pentecost. This is summed up in Acts 2:38 “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” (Act 2:38 KJV)
- And then he would give a plus one- to live a life of holiness – Heb 12:14 “Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:” (Heb 12:14 KJV)
To quote Pastor Larry – “Jesus told us to be saved, Peter told us what to do to be saved, and Paul told us why we do it.”
The book The Pentecostal Minister describes the ideal Minister.
“I Corinthians 3:9-11 says, “For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building. According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” This is a valuable scriptural admonition that fits the ministry precisely. We are taught in this instance that we labor together with our Lord and that any work of the ministry that will exist and continue in its eternal substance must be done upon the right foundation. If the foundation is not correct, there will be a terrible devastation of wreckage. When I use the word foundation I refer not only to doctrine but also to the manner in which it is presented. The preacher must not win people to himself. He must teach people to love the Lord above his own charm and charisma. People who are schooled to love the Lord deeply can meet the test of time and the storms of life.”
Hall, J. L.; Bernard, David K.. Pentecostal Minister, The (Kindle Locations 90-94). Word Aflame Press. Kindle Edition.
Larry reflects this description perfectly by laying a foundation in us built upon the Lord Jesus Christ, and he wanted us to build on that foundation. His work spawned several churches, and he expects us to carry on that message and fight the good fight of faith.
Larry loved his family and his friends. He was always taking in stragglers and treating them like family and he never passed on the opportunity to preach to them the Word. His greatest hope is that his family lives for God and meets him in heaven. Larry loved and was loved.
Here’s the song I sung for the funeral.