My father really liked Dr. Greene, and we had the radio on each day to listen to him teach verse by verse the Word of God. My heart and mind was stirred to know the Word of God in such manner.
Oliver's youthful life was that of a wastrel, living in wanton wickedness. Drinking, stealing, bootlegging, immorality-he was a veteran of all those vices. But at age twenty, God saved that wayward youth when he attended a revival meeting (solely in an attempt to date a pure country girl) and heard a sermon on "The wages of sin is death."
That night he was convinced, convicted and converted! He got a mighty good dose of salvation! Five months later God called him to preach. To prepare for this, he attended North Greenville Baptist College but was expelled in his second year because of his reluctance to cooperate with the denominational program.
Early in life it was immediately evident Oliver B. Greene was an independent Baptist. Through all of his ministry he carried the honor of being one who "could not be bought." In 1939, the 24-year-old bought a tent, and for 35 years he conducted revivals all across America, until failing health forced him to stop.
Carefully kept records reveal that over 200,000 found Christ under his ministry. Perhaps his single greatest campaign was in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, where 7,000 professions of faith were registered. He held his last tent revival in Bel Air, Maryland (this tent was 100 feet by 300 feet).
Surely another genius of Greene's labors for Christ was his radio ministry, which grew from one station in 1939 to 180 stations at his death. The Gospel Hour is still heard coast to coast by his taped messages. He prepared these taped messages "to continue on the Gospel Hour hopefully until Christ comes back."
Dr. Greene was called Home to be with the Lord on July 26, 1976, but he "being dead, yet speaketh," not only by radio but by his writings. His books, pamphlets, tracts, totaling above 100 titles, are still mailed out by the thousands.
Aye, DISGRACE TO GRACE, a fitting appraisal as well as a fitting epitaph for a great man of the Gospel and the greatly used messenger of the Gospel Hour-Oliver B. Greene!