(Newspapers of  Virginia & West Virginia)

Buffaloe/Bethany, Brooke County

The Christian Baptist  and
The Millennial  Harbinger

1823-33 Articles

Alexander Campbell Home at Bethany, West Virginia

 1823-1833   |   1834-1837   |   1838-1841   |   1842-1843   |   1844-1849

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  (Unless otherwise indicated, pagination for Christian Baptist is from Campbell's 1827 reprint)

No. VIII.]                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., March 1, 1824.                               [Vol. I.
"Style no man on earth your Father: for he alone is your father who is in heaven; and all ye are brethren. Assume not the title of Rabbi; for you have only one teacher: . -- Neither assume the title of Leader; for you have only one leader -- the Messiah."
Matt. xxiii 8-10. . . Campbell's Translation.   

"Prove all things: hold fast that which is good."
(Paul the Apostle.    

[p. 181 - orig. ed.]

To the readers of the Christian Baptist.
Part IV.

We have, in the two preceding numbers, presented our views on two charges that have been very generally rumored against us. There yet remains another which we have promised to notice. On these points we wish to be clearly understood. The charge now before us, is, that we deny "experimental religion." Before we plead guilty, or not guilty, of this impeachment, we should endeavour to understand the subject matter of it. Not having been in the use of the phrase "experimental religion," I could neither affirm nor deny any thing about it. The question, then, is, what is the thing? The name we have not in our vocabulary; and, therefore, could only deny the thing constructively. We will first ask, what does the Bible say about it? Upon examination I found it says not one word about "experimental religion." The Bible is as silent upon this topic as upon the "Romish mass." I then appealed to the Encyclopedia. The only thing like it, which I could find, was "experimental philosophy," which is a philosophy that can be proved by experiment. I then looked into the theological dictionaries, and soon found different kinds of religion, such as "Natural," "Revealed," &c., but not a word about experimental. I then applied to a friend who had once been deeply initiated into the modern sublimities of the refined popular doctrine. I was then informed that there were two kinds of religion much talked of in the pulpit and amongst the people.

[p. 182 - orig. ed.]

The one called "heart religion," and the other "head religion." The latter dwelling exclusively in the head, and the former in the heart. I also learned that the former was sometimes called "Christian experience," and this was presumed to be the thing intended by the words "experimental religion." As the New Testament is my religious creed, I appealed to it again. But it was as silent as the grave on all these distinctions. I then began to philosophize, in the popular way, upon the head and the heart, with a design of deciding which of these two religions was the better one. I had heard that "head religion" consisted in notions, and "heart religion" in feelings. Finding that all the learned agreed, that the Spirit of a man dwells in his head, and not in his heart, I had well nigh concluded that "head religion" must be the better of the two, as the human spirit is concerned more immediately with what takes place, in its habitation than elsewhere. I reasoned in this way, that if the spirit of a man dwells in his head, then head religion must be better than heart religion, and heart religion better than hand religion, &c. * Being unwilling to conclude too hastily on this subject, I thought of examining the phrase "Christian experience." On reflection I found that this phrase represented a very comprehensive idea. Every Christian has considerable experience, and some have experienced a thousand times more than others. Paul experienced many perils by land and by sea, by his own countrymen, by the heathen, in the city, in the wilderness, among false brethren. He experienced weariness, painfulness, watchings often, hunger, thirst, fastings,

* To prevent mistakes, let it be understood, that in speaking of the head and heart in the above connexion, we speak after the manner of vain philosophy. The term heart is often met with in the Scriptures, and it has acribed to it every exercise of the understanding, will, and affections. The moderns suppose it to have respect to the affections and dispositions only. But in Scripture it is said "to know, to understand, to study, to discern, to devise, to metitate, to reason, to endite, to ponder, to consider, to believe, to doubt, to be wise," ^c. See Deut. iv. 39. Ps. xlv. 1, xlix. 3. Prov. x. 8, xv. 28, xvi. 9, xix. 21. Ecc. viii. 5. Jer. xxiv. 7. Matt. xiii. 15. Mark ii. 6-8, xl. 23. Luke ii. 19, 35.

[p. 183 - orig. ed.]

cold, and nakedness, stripes and imprisonments. From the Jews he experienced five whippings, each of forty stripes, save one. He was thrice beaten with rods; once stoned; thrice shipwrecked; a day and a night in the deep. Besides this he experienced all the anxieties and griefs, all the sorrows and joys that arose from the care of the churches. This was, indeed, the experience of a Christian, and this I never denied. Many Christians can tell of similar experiences, but none can give a narrative so long, so varied, and entertaining, as that of Paul. Even Peter the apostle, was not able to detail such an experience.

But on reading this to a friend, I am told that I have not yet hit upon the point in question; that the Christian experience of which the populars speak, is, "the inward experience of grace upon the heart." What is the meaning of this grace upon the heart, said I? I know that the glad tidings is sometimes called the grace of God. Thus saith Paul, "the grace of God that bringeth salvation has appeared unto all men teaching us" &c. -- Here the Gospel is called "the grace of God appearing to all men." Again, saith Paul, whoso seeks to be justified by the Law, is fallen from grace; or has renounced the Gospel. Indeed, nothing is so worthy of the name "grace of God" as the Gospel. Now if this Gospel which is sometimes called "the word of God," "the spirit," "the grace," and "the truth" dwell in a man, that is, be believed sincerely, like a fruitful vine it yields in his heart, and in his life, the heavenly cluster of love, joy, peace, long suffering, gentleness, goodness, fidelity, meekness, temperance. These are the fruits of the spirit. Like precious ointment it diffuses in his heart heavenly odours, and the sweetness of its [perfume] exhales in his life, in the work of faith, the labor of love, and the patience of hope. This, said I, is just what I contend for. If you call this "Christian experience," I never denied it; yea, I have always taught it. But, I cannot approve of the name, since it is altogether an ambiguous name.

My friend replied, "This is not precisely the popular use of the phrase. It denotes, amongst most of

[p. 184 - orig. ed.]

the populars, a certain mental experience to becoming a Christian, an exercise of mind, a process through which a person must pass, before he can esteem himself a true Christian, and until we know from his recital of it. that he has been the subject of it, we cannot esteem him a Christian."

Then it is some invisible, indescribable energy exerted upon the minds of men, in order to make them Christians; and that too, independent of, or prior to, the word believed. I read in the New Testament of many who were the subjects of energies and diverse gifts of the Holy Spirit, but it was "after they had believed." The gifts of the Holy Spirit by which the gospel was confirmed, by which it was demonstrated to be of God, were conferred on the Jews and Samaritans after they had believed. Even the Apostles themselves, did not receive those powers and gifts of the Holy Spirit until they became disciples of Christ. On the Gentiles was poured out the Holy Ghost, or his gifts, while they heard Peter preaching the glad tidings, which they believed; for they came to hear Peter in such circumstances, as disposed them to believe every word he said. The age of those gifts has passed away, and now the influence of the Holy Spirit is only felt in and by the word believed. Hence, saoth Peter, "ye are born again, not of corruptible, but of incorruptible seed, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever" -- and ["]this is the word which by the Gospel is preached to you."

This descriptive preaching, of which we hear so much, is the most insipid and useless thing in the world. An orthodox divine of my acquaintance spends about one fourth of every year in preaching up the necessity, nature, and importance of regeneration. He usually tells the people his own story; that is, the history of his own regeneration. He sometimes "comes to visions and revelations." He tells the people they are ["]as spiritually dead as a stone;" "there is not one spark of life in unregenerate sinners." Nor can they, "in the state of nature," do any thing that can contribute to their regeneration. ["]It depends entirely upon the Spirit of God, which, as the wind bloweth

[p. 185 - orig. ed.]

where it listeth, worketh when, and upon whom it pleaseth." If there were not a thousand preachers like him, I would not disturb his mind by thus noticing the burden of his message. The spirit by which he speaks, is doubtless not that Spirit which was promised the Apostles; for that Spirit, Messiah said, would not speak of himself, but of Him. But this preacher's spirit speaks of himself, and not of Christ. It is worthy of notice, that the twelve Apostles, in all their public addresses, on record, which they delivered, there is not one sentence of this kind of preaching. -- And suppose it were as true as the Gospel, that such is the state of mankind, we can conceive of no possible good which could result from such descriptive harangues. They resemble a physician, who, instead of administering a remedy to his patient, delivers him a lecture on the nature of his disease. Miserable comforters are such preachers. They have no glad tidings of great joy to all people. Methinks I see a poor unfortunate sinner, lying in a slough, up to the neck in the mire, perishing with cold and hunger; and one of the orthodox divines riding along observes him. Methinks I hear him tell him -- fellow sinner, you are in a miserable condition, mired from head to foot. Believe me you are both cold and hungry, and I can assure you, that you are unable to help yourself out of this calamity. You could as easily carry one of these hills upon your shoulders, as extricate yourself from your present circumstances. Perish with cold and hunger you must; it is in vain for you to attempt an escape. Every effort you make to get, out only sinks you deeper in distress. Your Creator could, if he pleased, bring you out; but whether he listeth or not is uncertain. Fare ye well: -- The unfortunate sinner exclaims, "what good is in your address?" He is assured that it is an article of precious truth, worthy to be believed. But when believed, what good is in the faith of it!! The gospel is glad tidings of great joy to all people, and whatever is called Gospel, that is not good news, and worthy of all acceptation, is not Gospel.

-- But I have wandered from my subject. The popular

[p. 186 - orig. ed.]

belief of a regeneration previous to faith, or a knowledge of the Gospel, is replete with mischief. Similar to this is a notion that obtains among many of a "law work," or some terrible process of terror and despair through which a person must pass, as through the pious Bunyan's slough of despond, before he can believe the Gospel. It is all equivalent to this, that a man must become a desponding, trembling infidel, before he can become a believer. Now the Gospel makes no provision for despondency, inasmuch, as it assures all who believe it, upon the veracity of God, that they are forgiven and accepted in the Beloved.

A devout preacher told me, not long since, that he was regenerated about three years before he believed in Christ. -- He considered himself "as born again by a physical energy of the Holy Spirit, as a dead man would be raised to life by the mighty power of the Eternal Spirit.["] Upon his own hypothesis, (metaphysical, it is true,) he was three years a "godly unbeliever;" he was pleasing and acceptable to God "without faith," and if he had died during the three years, he would have been saved, though he believed not the Gospel. * Such is the effect of Metaphysical Theology.

I read, some time since, of a revival in the State of New-York in which the Spirit of God was represented as being abundantly poured out, on Presbyterians, Methodists, and Baptists. I think the converts in the order of the names were about three hundred

* We would observe, that we conceive the great error of the modern philosophers concerning the operations of the Holy Spirit to be, that they are the same physical operations now, which were exhibited in those days, which were emphatically called, "the days of my spirit, saith God." When men spake with tongues, healed diseases, and wrought every species of miracles, by the immediate agency of the Holy Spirit, for the confirmation of their testimony. When they spake, prophesied, discerned spirits, and interpreted oracles, by the immediate impulse of the spirit. We do not suppose that they contend for an agency to the same degree, but only of the same species. But we are taught that since those gifts have ceased, the Holy Spirit now operates upon the minds of sinners only by the word. With respect to pagans and all those incapable of hearing the word; the Scriptures do not teach us what Plato has taught thousands of modern divines. The regeneration of pagans without the word is a dogma not quite so rational, as the dogmas of a regeneration after death in purgatory. In spite of all our efforts,

[p. 187 - orig. ed.]

Presbyterians, three hundred Methodists, and two hundred and eighty Baptists. On the principles of Bellamy, Hopkins, and Fuller, these being all regenerated without any knowledge of the Gospel, there is no difficulty in accounting for their joining different sects. The spirit did not teach the Presbyterians to believe that "God had foreordained whatsoever comes to pass;" nor the Methodists to deny it. He did not teach the Presbyterians and the Methodists, that infants were members of the Church and to be baptized, nor the Baptists to deny it. But on the hypothesis of the Apostle James, viz. "Of his own will begat he us by the word of truth." I think it would be difficult to prove that the spirit of God had any thing to do with the aforesaid revival.

Enthusiasm flourishes, blooms under the popular systems. This man was regenerated when asleep, by a vision of the night. That man heard a voice in the woods, saying, "thy sins be forgiven thee." A third saw his Saviour descending to the tops of the trees, at noon day. A thousand form a band, and sit up all night, to take heaven by surprise. Ten thousand are waiting in anxiety for a power from on high to descend upon their souls; they frequent meetings for the purpose of obtaining this power. Another class, removed so far south, by special illumination, have discovered that there is no hell, that the Devil and his angels will ultimately ascend to the skies, and that Judas himself, Herod and Pontius Pilate, will shine like stars forever and ever. And, to encourage the infatuation, the preacher mounts the rostrum, and with his sermon, either in notes or committed to memory, he prays to God for his spirit to guide his tongue, and to send a message that he will bless to the salvation of "that dear congregation." Thus the people lay themselves out

the vortex of metaphysical jargon will draw us in. I wrote this to prevent mistakes, perhaps it may create some. But, "to the testimony," believe us not if we speak not its dogmas. We doubt not, but in the above, we speak a mixed dialect; perhaps, half the language of Ashdod, and half the language of Canaan. -- We are positive on one point, that the Scriptures teach us not the modern doctrine, or the ancient philosophical doctrine, of "physical operations of the Divine Spirit," in order to faith.

[p. 188 - orig. ed.]

for operations and new revelations. Like the Phoenix in the fable, they and the preacher have gathered a bundle of dry sticks, and they set about clapping their wings with one accord, that they may fan them into a flame -- which sometimes actually happens, if our faith could be so strong as to believe it.

From all this scene of raging enthusiasm, be admonished, my friends, to open your Bibles and to hearken to the voice of God, which is the voice of reason. God now speaks to us only by his word. By his Son, in the New Testament, he has fully revealed himself and his will. This is the only revelation of his Spirit which we are to regard. The popular preachers, and the popular systems, alike render the word of God of none effect. Some of them are so awfully bold as to represent it as "a dead letter." According to them it ought never to have been translated, for the reading of it in an unknown tongue, if accompanied with some supernatural power, with some new revelation of the spirit, would have been as suitable to the salvation of men as though read in our own tongue. The jarring elements of which their systems are composed do, however, by the necessary laws of discordant principles, in the act of combustion reflect so much light as to convince us that the written word is the last appeal. Let us make it the first and the last. It comes to us in the demonstration of the Holy Spirit, and with the power of miraculous evidence. The word of Jesus Christ is, "spirit and life." "The word of God is quick and powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword,["] -- yea, it is the sword of the Spirit, it is the spirit of his mouth. "The entrance of thy word, O Lord, giveth light, and makes the simple wise."   EDITOR.

In a work so small as the present, we should aim at brevity and variety, in the articles inserted. This has always been our intention, though we have not been able to conform to it. The following article requires an apology on account of its length, but this we have, in its importance. The argument may be called a new one, as far as any thing that is now discovered in the Scriptures can be called new. We know that Mr. Wardlaw in his reply to Mr. Yates, and other writers, have urged the same passages in support of their views; but not in the same manner, nor with half the effect. We think it is unanswerable. Small as our work is, we

[p. 189 - orig. ed.]

would not hesitate to allow half a dozen of pages to any writer that will attempt to answer it, provided that the reply be exclusively confined to this one argument. On this condition alone could we admit it. We publish it on two accounts: the one, its own intrinsic merit; the other, as proof positive of our innocence of a recent charge brought against us, as favoring the Socinian hypothesis. -- While we renounce the metaphysical jargon, found in creeds, on what is called the doctrine of the "trinity," such as "eternal generation, filiation," &. we regard both Arianism, semi-Arianism, and Socinianism, as poor, miserable, blind, and naked nonsense and absurdity.   ED.

The presumptuous Socinians call themselves Christians. Alas! poor men! they are drivelling philosophers. The polite and the stupid may indeed suppose that, on their heretical paradox, these doctors reason divinely. -- Well, be it so. "Jesus," say they, "is the son of Joseph." Excellent Christians! If ye, gentlemen, interpret nature as you do religion; if ye unlock the mysteries of the material world with the same adroitness and perspicacity, with which ye usher into the open day the spiritual abortions of your own disordered brains, indeed ye are divine philosophers! I have always thought the paradox of the Socinians a little too bare faced even for the vulgar. The devotees of the popular religion are very stupid, because their teachers generally leave them, in point of information, just where they find them, prodigiously ignorant of the holy Scriptures; nevertheless, if they should at all look into the sacred volume, they will not be apt, I should think, to gather up Socinianism.

(under construction)

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. I.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., April 5, 1824.                               No. 9.


The foundation of Hope and of Christian Union.

Messiah is born in the city of David, in the awful crisis alluded to in the first essay in this number. Science had proved itself systematic folly; philosophy, falsely called moral, had exhibited its utter incompetency to illuminate the understanding, to purify the heart, to control the passions, to curb the appetites, or to restrain the vices of the world. A scepticism that left nothing certain, a voluptuousness that knew no restraint, a lasciviousness that recognized no law, a selfishness that proscribed every relation, an idolatry that deified every reptile, and a barbarity that brutalized every feeling, had very generally overwhelmed the world, and had grouped those assimilated in vice, under every particular name, characteristic of every species of crime. Amidst the uncertainty, darkness, and vice that overspread the earth, the Messiah appears, and lays a foundation of hope, of true religion, and of religious union, unknown, unheard of, unexpected among men. The Jews were united by consanguinity, and by an agreement in a ponderous ritual. The Gentiles rallied under every opinion, and were grouped, like filings of steel around a magnet, under every possible shade of difference of thought, concerning their mythology. So long as unity of opinion was regarded as a proper basis of religious union, so long have mankind been distracted by the multiplicity and variety of opinions. To establish what is called a system of orthodox opinions as the bond of union, was, in fact, offering a premium for new diversities in opinion, and for increasing, ad infinitum, opinions, sects, and divisions. And what is worse than all, it was establishing self-love and pride as religious principles, as fundamental to salvation; for a love regulated by similarity of opinion, is only a love of one's own opinion; and all the zeal exhibited in the defence of it, is but the pride of opinion.

When the Messiah appeared as the founder of a new religion, systems of religion consisting of opinions and speculations upon matter and mind, upon God and nature, upon virtue and vice, had been adopted, improved, reformed, and exploded time after time. That there was always something superfluous, something defective, something wrong, something that could be improved, in every system of religion and morality, was generally felt, and at last universally acknowledged. But the grandeur, sublimity, and beauty of the foundation of hope, and of ecclesiastical or social union, established by the author and founder of christianity, consisted in this, that the belief of one fact, and that upon the best evidence in the world, is all that is requisite, as far as faith goes, to salvation. The belief of this one fact, and submission to one institution expressive of it, is all that is required by Heaven to admission into the church. A christian, as defined, not by Doctor Johnson, nor any creed-maker, but by one taught by Heaven, and in Heaven, is one that believes this one fact, and has submitted to one institution, and whose deportment accords with the morality and virtue taught by the great Prophet. The one fact is, that Jesus the Nazarene is the Messiah. The evidence upon which it is to be believed is the testimony of twelve men, confirmed by prophecy, miracles, and spiritual gifts. The one institution is baptism into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Every such person is a christian in the fullest sense of the word, the moment he has believed this one fact, upon the above evidence, and has submitted to the above mentioned institution; and whether he believes the five points condemned or the five points approved by the synod of Dort, is not so much as to be asked of him; whether he holds any of the views of the Calvinists or Arminians, Presbyterians, Episcopalians, Methodists, Baptists, or Quakers, is never once to be asked of such a person, in order to admission into the christian community, called the church. The only doubt that can reasonably arise upon these points, is, whether this one fact, in its nature and necessary results, can suffice to the salvation of the soul, and whether the open avowal of it, in the overt act of baptism, can be a sufficient recommendation of the person, so professing, to the confidence and love of the brotherhood. As to the first of these, it is again and again asserted, in the clearest language, by the Lord himself, the apostles Peter, Paul, and John, that he that believes the fact that Jesus is the Christ, is begotten by God, overcomes the world, has eternal life, and shall, on the veracity of God, be saved. This should settle the first point; and as to the second, it is disposed of in a similar manner; for the witnesses agree that whosoever confesses that Jesus is the Christ, and is baptized, should be received into the church, and not an instance can be produced of any person being asked for any other faith, in order to admission, in the whole New Testament. The Saviour expressly declared to Peter, that upon this fact that he was the Messiah, the Son of God, he would build his church; and Paul has expressly declared, that "other foundation can no man lay (for ecclesiastical union) than that Jesus is the Christ." The point is proved that we have assumed, and this proved, every thing is established requisite to the union of all christians upon a proper basis. Every sectarian scheme falls before it, and on this principle alone can the whole church of Christ be built. We are aware of many objections to this grand scheme, revealed by God, to establish righteousness, peace, and harmony among men; but we know of none that weighs a grain of sand against it. We shall meet them all (Deo volente) in due time and place. Some of them have been anticipated in one or two articles preceding. But of these more fully hereafter. It must strike every man of reflection, that a religion requiring much mental abstraction or exquisite refinement of thought, or that calls for the comprehension or even apprehension of refined distinctions and of nice subtleties, is a religion not suited to mankind in their present circumstances. To present such a creed as the Westminster, as adopted either by Baptists or Paido-Baptists; such a creed as the Episcopalian, or, in fact, any sectarian creed, composed, as they all are, of propositions deduced by logical inferences, and couched in philosophical language, to all those who are fit subjects of the salvation of Heaven -- I say, to present such a creed to such for their examination or adoption,

[p. 61]
shocks all common sense. This pernicious course is what has paganized christianity. Our sects and parties, our disputes and speculations, our orders and casts, so much resemble any thing but christianity, that when we enter a modern synagogue, or an ecclesiastical council, we rather seem to have entered a Jewish sanhedrim, a Mahometan mosque, a Pagan temple, or an Egyptian cloister, than a Christian congregation. Sometimes, indeed, our religious meetings so resemble the Areopagus, the Forum, or the Senate, that we almost suppose ourselves to have been translated to Athens or Rome. Even christian orators emulate Demosthenes and Cicero; christian doctrines are made to assume the garb of Egyptian mysteries, and christian observances put on the pomp and pageantry of pagan ceremonies. Unity of opinion, expressed in subscription to voluminous dogmas imported from Geneva, Westminster, Edinburgh, or Rome, is made the bond of union, and a difference in the tenth, or ten thousandth shade of opinion, frequently becomes the actual cause of dismemberment or expulsion. The New Testament was not designed to occupy the same place in theological seminaries that the caresses of malefactors are condemned to occupy in medical halls -- first doomed to the gibbet, and then to the dissecting knife of the spiritual anatomist. Christianity consists infinitely more in good works than in sound opinions; and while it is a joyful truth that he that believes and is baptized shall be saved, it is equally true that he that says, "I know him, and keeps not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. II.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., August 2, 1824.                               No. 1.


Between the Editor and a Clergyman.
Part II.

Clergyman. I told you of our last interview that I wished to resume the passage in the Romans which says, "how shall they preach except they be sent?" This I suppose to be applicable to all preachers authorized according to the law of God.

Editor. I presume it is. But I think it is by no means applicable to those licensed by a presbytery, except you can prove that a presbytery is authorized by God to send, in his name, whom it pleases.... Six men may meet in an inn and form a constitution for themselves, and call themselves a presbytery, but you would dispute their right to the name. Now every argument you would bring against their assumptions I would turn against your canonized presbytery...

C. ... And do tell me what ideas you attach to the word presbytery? You admit it is a bible term. Now it must have a bible signification.

E. This I have no objections to do, provided you first give me a definition of what you call a presbytery.

C. I will. "A presbytery consists of the ministers and representative lay elders of the congregations of a certain district."

E. Now let me ask, Did you ever read in the scriptures of "representative lay elders" or ministers of a certain district meeting for any purpose? or rather, Was there ever such a being as a lay elder in the primitive church? ...

C. But what was this eldership?

E. I will let Macknight explain it.... "That you may understand the scriptures, neglect not to exercise the spiritual gift which is in you, which was given you by the imposition of my hands, according to a prophetic impulse, together with the imposition of the hands of the eldership, at Lystra, who thereby testified their approbation of your ordination as an evangelist." It seems, then, that the Greek word presbytery, according to the most learned of your own fraternity, implied no more than the eldership of one congregation... Paul, in the next epistle to Timothy, declares that this gift was given by the imposition of his own hands; and in no instance on record, does it appear that spiritual gifts of any kind were bestowed by the imposition of any hands save those of the apostles...

C. And was not the apostle speaking of the ordinary preachers of the gospel -- of those we now call ministers of the gospel?

E. Those you call the ordinary ministers of the gospel, are very ill defined in the popular creeds, and not at all defined in the New Testament... the prophetic allusion in the prophecy of Isaiah... is wholly applicable to the apostles and their associates and to none else....

C. And have the apostles no successors in this commission; or are there none now divinely commissioned to do the things enjoined in that commission?

E. I know of none... Mark gives the promise "I am with you," in the following words. See his statement of the commission, xvi. 15-17. Campbell's translation. It reads thus: "And these miraculous powers shall attend the believers--(I am with you.) In my name they shall expel demons -- they shall speak languages unknown to them before -- they shall handle serpents with safety, and if they drink poison it shall not hurt them. They shall cure the sick by laying hands upon them." Thus the Lord was with them. Hear John Mark once more, and more explicit still, 20th verse: "They went out and proclaimed the tidings every where, the Lord co-operating WITH THEM, and confirming their doctrine by the miracles wherewith it was accompanied"... the commission is not to be extended to any in our time, nor is it given to any in our time....



MR. CHURCH, of the city of Pittsburgh, at his baptism on the 11th ult. delivered a discourse of three hours and one quarter in length, in the presence of a very numerous congregation, assembled on the banks of the Allegany. Having myself been


one of his hearers, I can give my readers a brief outline of his object and method. Mr. Church had been a member of different religious communities, and once a ruling elder of a congregation of Covenanters. He is well versed in all the systems of presbyterianism, and has, for a number of years, been a diligent searcher after truth. He brought with him to the water the creeds, testimonies, and formulas of those churches, as well as the holy scriptures. After having vindicated himself from the foul aspersions of some of his quondam brethren and friends, which are the usual lot of those who presume to judge and act for themselves in religious matters, he informed his audience that he would,

1st. Prove from the holy scriptures and the standards of the different churches his right to search, judge, and act for himself, and especially that he had an inalienable right, as well as the most justifiable reasons, to separate from every branch of the presbyterian church --

2d. Demonstrate from the scriptures the true nature and character of the church of Jesus Christ, her members, ministers, modes of worship, discipline; and contrast these with the genius of those societies that had assumed the title of christian churches, their members, ministers, modes of worship, and government --

3d. Exhibit the sacred import of christian baptism; its various corruptions and abuses in the Presbyterian churches, and others, as well as the character of those who were admitted to this ordinance in primitive times.

It would be altogether out of our power, in the size of this number, even to give any thing like a fair miniature of this discourse. Suffice it to say, that Mr. Church redeemed the pledge he had given in his method; and did, at least to my satisfaction, as well as, no doubt, to that of many of his auditors, fully prove his right of search from all the documents mentioned, and exhibit the corruptions of the systems proposed. He stripped the clergy of all their exorbitant claims and pretensions, and fully expatiated on the vices and deformities of the clerical system. He read many extracts from the popular creeds and testimonies, the national covenant and solemn league, on which he presented many appropriate remarks. And such was the efficacy of his remarks, that they produced, in some instances, the same effect on some of the sons of the national convention and solemn league which the discourse of Stephen produced on the Jews, such as a literal gnashing of the teeth, and an equivalent to stopping of the ears. He was, however, patiently heard by a respectable congregation to the close, although it rained for more than an hour of the time, and the people were by no means comfortably circumstanced. The discourse has, we have since understood, caused a great "shaking among the dry bones." Indeed, he sometimes appeared to me like Sampson amongst the Philistines, at least likely to kill more by his emblematical death, and in his emblematical burial, than during his former life. Very few of the


regular clergy could have made so lengthy and so appropriate a discourse, and have assembled such a congregation, as this erudite layman.     EDITOR.


THE following QUERIES came from the pen of a diligent student of the Bible. We have no room to attend to them in the present number. We wish our readers to attempt, each, to answer them for himself. We shall attend to them hereafter

1st. The order of the first churches when supernatural gifts were abundant, being discovered; what, if any example, will it form to us who live in these last days when supernatural gifts have ceased?

2d. What duty or duties are peculiar to the Bishop and not common to the brethren?

3d. Was it the Bishops who chiefly spoke in the first churches where they presided, or did they commonly sit as judges (1 Cor. xiv. 29.) to correct, &c. while the brethren edified the body in love? Eph. iv. 16.

4th. What are the peculiar duties of a Deacon!

5th. Was it to the deaconship that those seven mentioned in Acts, 6th chap. were appointed, or what were they?

Note 1: The entire issue for this date is available on-line (in edited, 1848 reprint format) at the "Restoration Movement Pages" web-site.

Note 2: See the Rev. Dr. William H. Whitsitt's "Sidney Rigdon, the Real Founder of Mormonism," pp. 165-70 and pp. 219-20 for Whitsitt's hopeful identification of the above "diligent student of the Bible" questioner as the Rev. Sidney Rigdon. In 1834, Eber D. Howe, on page 289 of his Mormonism Unvailed, gave this undocumented summary of Rigdon's early career as a Campbellite: "Now, as [Solomon] Spalding's book can no where be found, or any thing heard of it after being carried to this establishment [in Pittsburgh], there is the strongest presumption that it remained there in seclusion, till about the year 1823 or '24, at which time Sidney Rigdon located himself in that city. We have been credibly informed that he was on terms of intimacy with Lambdin, being seen frequently in his shop. Rigdon resided in Pittsburgh about three years, and during the whole of that time, as he has since frequently asserted, abandoned preaching and all other employment, for the purpose of studying the bible. He left there and came into the county where he now resides, about the time Lambdin died, and commenced preaching some new points of doctrine, which were afterwards found to be inculcated in the Mormon Bible."

Note 3: Based upon the scanty reference given by Mr. Howe, some subsequent writers have speculated that Rev. Rigdon occupied his free time, during the latter part of 1823 and all of 1824, in researching quasi-biblical prophecies and exhortations suitable for insertion into the historical romance of Solomon Spalding. Rigdon himself provides something less than firm agreement with Howe's allegation of what he "frequently asserted" in Ohio, however: "Having now retired from the ministry, and having no way by which to sustain his family, besides his own industry, he [Rigdon] was necessitated to find other employment... in the humble capacity of a journeyman tanner... After laboring for two years as a tanner, he removed to Bainbridge, Geauga, county, Ohio... From this time forward, he devoted himself to the work of the ministry, confining himself to no creed, but held up the Bible as the rule of faith, and advocating those doctrines which had been the subject of his, and Mr. Campbell's investigations, viz: Repentance and baptism, for the remission of sins."

Note 4: Rev. Whitsitt speculates that Alexander Campbell gave no immediate answer to the questioner's words concerning "supernatural gifts," etc., so as not to open the subject up to argument in his newspaper. All sources agree that Rigdon looked forward to a speedy restoration of these "supernatural gifts," with the imminent approach of the Christian Millennium. Rev. Campbell had no use for this popular conceit and tried to caution his readers against expecting a resumption of the ancient ministering of angels, prophecies, healings, etc. Whitsitt remarks: "In another part of the same issue, however, he [Campbell] lays his own hand to the task in such a way as to avoid the appearance of antagonism against the more stringent advocates of the "ancient order of things." The occasion which he embraced was found in the second part of "A Familiar Dialogue between the Editor and a Clergyman." There in setting forth the singular grounds upon which he denied the possibility of any special call to the ministry, he takes an opportunity to deal with the commission, and positively affirms that the command of the Savior In this instance applied to no other people than those who were numbered in the circle of the disciples who then heard his voice. As a natural consequence the promise of his presence and support even to the end of the world had no wider application, and it was fully performed when the last of these was carried to his grave, that event marked the end of the age to which the departing Lord had reference. Especially does he insist that the passage from the gospel of Mark cited above, which was perhaps always on the tongue of Rigdon, was subject to the same limitation as the commission, and that none of Christ's people could have the gift of working miracles after the apostolic times."

Note 5: Dr. William Church, Sr.'s granddaughter, Mary Church, became the wife of Walter Scott's son John in 1848. Both William Church, Sr. and Mary Church Scott died in Pittsburgh, in May of 1850 -- see Millennial Harbinger for July, 1850. See also Rev. Lawrence Greatrake's publication of his disgust over William Church, Sr.'s 1824 Campbellite baptism, in Rev. Greatrake's 1824 pamphlet, Letters To Alexander Campbell, by A Regular Baptist and in Walter Scott's 1824 Reply.


No. 2.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., September 6, 1824.                               Vol. II.
"Style no man on earth your Father: for he alone is your father who is in heaven; and all ye are brethren. Assume not the title of Rabbi; for you have only one teacher: . -- Neither assume the title of Leader; for you have only one leader -- the Messiah."
Matt. xxiii 8-10. . . Campbell's Translation.   

"Prove all things: hold fast that which is good."
(Paul the Apostle.    

[p. 37 - orig. ed.]


It is no doubt known to some of you that a pamphlet, titled, "Letters to Alexander Campbell, by a Regular Baptist," has been
[p. 38 - orig. ed.]
published at Pittsburgh a few days ago. It will, doubtless, be expected that I would pay some attention to this work. The spirit and style of this "Regular Baptist" forbids my addressing one word to him. I will, therefore, without prepossessing my readers by expressing any opinion of the motives and object of this letter-writer, proceed to review his performance.

This "Regular Baptist" informs me that my character is of two kinds -- extrinsic and intrinsic. My "intrinsic character" is that which he investigates and on which he pronounces judgment. In coming at my intrinsic character, or the character of my heart, he has, he says, adopted as "a standard of judgment," principles admitted by "the Christian and the philosopher." These principles, he adds, "direct to a general investigation of life, the whole area of action." But he regrets that the whole area of my action is unknown to him, every thing previous to my arrival in these United States being with him "something of conjecture." But although my "intrinsic character" is the subject of investigation, and the principles of the Christian and the philosopher require that the "whole area of action" should be examined, yet the ingenious author views "the area of my action" only since I joined the Baptists -- and, in fact, while he professes to do this much, he only fixes his eyes upon me since the year 1820. And of all the area of my action from which my intrinsic character is to be ascertained, only four years come in review; -- and of these four years but my "two debates and the Christian Baptist" are particularly noticed. To what a span is the whole area of my action reduced! And from how few documents does he undertake to prove that I am unregenerated. Let not the reader be startled at the word unregenerated; for this is the point of investigation, and the whole area of this Regular Baptist's letters is filled with mighty and convincing proofs, as he alleges, that I am an unregenerated man. But the strangest point of all remains to be noticed, and that is, that of all the actions of my life, and of all the words I have spoken or written, not one is adduced as proof of his favorite position, but only his conjectures, with a reference to the Debates on Baptism and the Christian Baptist. Of all that I have written not one word is cited. These letters then are, if any thing can be so named, 'a new thing under the sun.' For I am tried and condemned upon mere conjecture, and worse than all, these conjectures are predicated either upon the most evident falsehoods, or upon a false view of facts. So much by way of introduction to my review.

A few remarks upon the writer of these letters are also necessary to their easy comprehension. They are anonymous, and necessarily to be ranked under the very common and general head of anonymous abuse. As such I was not bound to notice them; for who knows not that the ebullitions of anonymous foes carry their own condemnation in their preface? But, believing that medicine may be deduced even from the carcase of a serpent that has poisoned itself, I am induced to notice them under the conviction that good may result therefrom. The writer of these letters is the Reverend Mr. GREATRAKE, from the city of Baltimore or somewhere thereabouts. He is now located in the city of Pittsburgh,
[p. 39 - orig. ed.]
and calls himself a "Regular Baptist." It is true that he either promised or prophesied in the conclusion of his address to the Baptist churches in the west, that while on earth he would "be known to them only by the name of a regular Baptist." In his last letter to me he was kind enough to appear willing to give me his real name, on presenting to the publisher a "fair reason" for demanding it. But when I called on the publisher he presented me with written conditions which the "Regular Baptist" had given him, which precluded him from giving up his name except upon such conditions as the civil law would oblige him to give it up or suffer prosecution. This gentleman is at present hired by a party, who were excluded from a regular Baptist church, at least by a church which at the time of their exclusion, was recognized as such. He seems to glory in the name of "a Regular Baptist," yet with what propriety I cannot see, as he is ordained over a party that cannot be called regular Baptists. It is a truth that the last Redstone Association recommended the calling of a committee to endeavor to promote a reunion of those excommunicated ones; or, as they express it, "to compromise the difficulties" -- and that a committee was called by the excluded party, which leaving undone what was the only thing recommended by the Association to be done; they proceeded to do that which they were not commanded to do, and did, without any authority from the association, call or denominate the excommunicated ones a church; and thus, as far as in them lay, prevented their re-union on such grounds as could, on regular Baptist principles, constitute them a regular Baptist church. Although, then, Mr. Greatrake glories in the name of a Regular Baptist, as though the very name should "cover a multitude of sins," he is not at present acting as such, in the instances specified. This with me is, however, a very small matter, as I lay no stress on such names, whether assumed or bestowed. There is a church in Pittsburgh that would rejoice much more in being a regular church of Christ, than a regular Baptist church; which church has two bishops, who, while they watch over and labour among the saints, labour working with their own hands according to the apostolic command; and not only minister to their own wants, but are ensamples to the flock in beneficence and hospitality. This church, by walking in the fear of God and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, is edified and enlarged by regular accessions -- and their example in that city is a dangerous one to those who would maintain themselves by maintaining such opinions as will maintain them. The object of the letter-writer evidently being to defame this church as well as myself, it was necessary to present the reader with this brief notice of things in relation to the Rev. Mr. Greatrake. Now to the letters.

There are four conjectures, in some respects different, and in some respects not very distinct, by which Mr. Greatrake demonstrates that I am unregenerated. The first is, that I "must have received some personal pique or experienced some severe disappointment, if not both, from the denomination or church to which I formerly belonged." The second is that I must be stimulated by an "insatiate vanity." The third, that I am actuated by avarice,
[p. 40 - orig. ed.]
or, as he expresses it, by my "pecuniary interest." The fourth is, that I am aiming at being the head of a party. Into one or more or all of these evil motives, he resolves my two Debates on Baptism, and the "Christian Baptist," and thence concludes that I am a very bad man -- although my extrinsic character he acknowledges is good.

I could have wished that my biographer had taken a little more time, and a little more of the advice of his friends, in waiting to get acquainted with my history and myself -- and have left it to some more skilful, though less benevolent hand, to write memoirs of my life. I have only to make a statement of a few facts and occurrences of general notoriety, and I think his efforts will require no comment, nor praise.

I sailed from the city of London Derry on the 3d day of October, 1808, destined for the city of Philadelphia; but being shipwrecked on the coast of the island of Ila on the night of the 9th of the same month, I was detained until the 3d day of August, 1809, on which day I sailed from the city of Greenock for New York. On the 27th of which month I and the whole ship's company had almost perished in the Atlantic; but through the watchful care and tender mercy of our Heavenly Father, we were brought to the harbor which we desired to see, and safely landed in New York on the 29th of September, 1809. On the 28th of the next month I arrived in Washington, Pennsylvania, to which place I have been known ever since. I arrived in this country with credentials in my pocket from that sect of Presbyterians known by the name of Seceders. These credentials certified that I had been both in Ireland in the presbytery of Markethill, and in Scotland in the presbytery of Glasgow a member of the Secession church, in good standing. My faith in creeds and confessions of human device was considerably shaken while in Scotland, and I commenced my career in this country under the conviction that nothing that was not as old as the New Testament should be made an article of faith, a rule of practice, or a term of communion amongst Christians. In a word, that the whole of the Christian religion exhibited in prophecy and type in the Old Testament, was presented in the fullest, clearest, and most perfect manner in the New Testament, by the Spirit of wisdom and Revelation.

This has been the pole-star of my course ever since, and I thank God that he has enabled me so far to prosecute it, and to make all my prejudices and ambition bow to this emancipating principle. I continued in the examination of the Scriptures, ecclesiastical history, and systems of Divinity, ancient and modern, until July 15th, 1810, on which day I publicly avowed my convictions of the independency of the church of Christ and the excellency and authority of the Scriptures, in a discourse from the last section of what is commonly called 'Christ's Sermon on the Mount.' During this year I pronounced 106 orations on 61 primary topics of the Christian religion in the western part of Pennsylvania, Virginia, and the neighboring part of Ohio. On the 12th day of March, 1811, I took to myself a wife of the Presbyterian connexion, and on the 25th of the same month became a resident in Virginia. I became
[p. 41 - orig. ed.]
a citizen of Virginia as soon as the laws of the state permitted, and have continued such until this day. In conformity to the grand principle which I have called the pole-star of my course of religious enquiry, I was led to question the claims of infant sprinkling to Divine authority, and was, after a long, serious, and prayerful examination of all means of information, led to solicit immersion on a profession of my faith, when as yet I scarce knew a Baptist from Washington to the Ohio, in the immediate region of my labours, and when I did not know that any friend or relation on earth would concur with me. I was accordingly baptized by Elder Matthias Luse, who was accompanied by Elder Henry Spears, on the 12th day of June, 1812. In the mean time I pursued the avocations of a husbandman as the means of my subsistence, and while I discharged, as far as in me lay, the duties of a Bishop (having been regularly ordained one of the Elders of the Church of Christ at Brush Run) and itinerated frequently through the circumjacent country, I did it without any earthly remuneration. I did not at first contemplate forming any connexion with the Regular Baptist Association called the Redstone, as the perfect independency of the church and the pernicious tendency of human creeds and terms of communion were subjects to me of great concern. As a mere spectator, I did, however, visit the Redstone Association in the fall of 1812. After a more particular acquaintance with some of the members and ministers of that connexion, the church of Brush Run did finally agree to unite with that Association on the ground that no terms of union or communion other than the Holy Scriptures should be required. On this ground, after presenting a written declaration of our belief (always distinguishing betwixt making a declaration of our faith for the satisfaction of others, and binding that declaration on others as a term of communion) we united with the Redstone Association in the fall of 1813. In which connexion the church of Brush Run yet continues. In the close of 1814 and beginning of 1815 I made an extensive tour through a part of the eastern region, visiting the cities of New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington, and did, to my present shame, by milking both the sheep and the goats, obtain about 1000 dollars for the building of a meeting-house in Wellsburgh, a place then destitute of any house for religious meetings. In 1816 I delivered a discourse on the law before the Redstone Association, which being published by request, gave rise to some discussion, which resulted, we believe, in some benefit to the searchers after truth. January, 1818, I undertook the care of a classical and mercantile academy, known by the name of the Buffaloe Seminary. I continued the principal of this seminary for five and a half years. In 1820, after being thrice solicited by the Baptists, I did consent to debate with Mr. Walker on the subject of Baptism. Of this debate two editions have been published; one by myself, of 1000 copies, and one by Messrs. Eichbaum & Johnson, of 3000. In 1823 I commenced editing the Christian Baptist, and in the fall of 1823 held a public debate with Mr. Mac Calla, which grew out of the former with Mr. Walker. These outlines bring me up till the present year, and render a further detail unnecessary.
[p. 42 - orig. ed.]
I should have observed that a church was organized in the town of Wellsburgh in 1823, which was composed for the most part of members dismissed from the church at Brush Run, of which church I was appointed a Bishop.

The reader will agree with me in the result that it was expedient for me to give the above abstract with circumstantial accuracy, and we can, not only solemnly testify the above statement to be correct and strictly true, but we are able to prove every item of it of any importance before any tribunal, civil or ecclesiastical. With this document before us, let us now attend to the first conjecture. It is founded on a falsehood. I never received any personal pique or experienced any disappointment from any Presbyterian sect, Seceder or other. I never asked one favour from any Paido-Baptist sect, and therefore never received any disappointment. Nay, so far from this, favours were offered and not accepted. Immediately after my arrival in this country the Academy at Pittsburgh was offered me, and invitations to union with the Paido-Baptist sects presented to me. Every thing is just the reverse of Mr. Greatrake's conjecture. Time after time favors, ecclesiastical favors, were offered me, and no consideration under heaven, but conscience forbade their acceptance. Indeed I am bound, gratefully to remember the kind offers and offices of many Paido-Baptists; and a better return I cannot (as I think) make, than to admonish them of their errors. * But this gentleman, to destroy my influence and my power to do them good, would persuade them that I am an enemy because I tell them the truth, and would conjecture that I was avenging an affront or an injury which I never received. Insults and injuries I have received from some Baptists; but until my appearance on the stage in defence of the truths I had espoused in common with them, no insults or injuries are recollected ever to have been received from any body of Paido-Baptists.

But there is another falsehood in Mr. Greatrake’s fist conjecture. He represents me as peculiarly bitter against the Seceders. Now it is a fact which he cannot disprove, that in all my remarks, both oral and written, there is less said about them than other Presbyterian Paido-Baptists.

His second conjecture, that I am actuated by an "insatiate vanity," is capable of being proved to be a falsehood. By vanity he seems to mean, in his subsequent remarks, a love of fame. How a person, whose ruling passion is love of fame, should, in that period of life when this passion is supposed to be strongest, retire from every theatre on which he might exhibit to advantage, is a point which deserves some consideration, and which my biographer should have explained. A person that refused, as I have done, offers of connexion with popular sects, and of places of public and conspicuous eminence in the cities of Philadelphia and New York, wbo could take his Bible and the plough and sit down among the hills of Western Virginia, and from the age of 21 to 31, move in the quiet vale of retirement, without seeking in one instance to

* The first night that I spent in Washington county, Pa. I enjoyed the hospitalities of Doctor Samuel Ralston.
[p. 43 - orig. ed.]

make himself more conspicuous than his immediate duties and business required, affords, we conceive, but few evidences that his ruling passion is the love of fame. But that I would not desire the fame of doing good and of being useful to my fellow-men, is what I do not affirm. From a boy I have admired the sentiment of the following lines: --

  "All fame is foreign, but of true desert;
  "Plays round the head, but comes not to the heart
  "One self-approving hour, whole years outweighs
  "Of stupid starers, and of loud huzzas;
  "And more true joy Marcellus exil’d feels
  "Than Caesar with a senate at his heels!"

But this third conjecture will throw some light upon the former two. And behold he says, "Your vanity is gratified and your pecuniary interest advanced by the whole circle of your doings; and these combined are the grand controling principles from which you act." And so this reverend gentleman begins by conjecture, and ends by asserting that avarice and ambition are the two "grand controling principles" from which I act. Yes, “Caesar aut nihil is my motto" -- and, adds he, "While men of sense will readily discern the ambition of your projects, those of the most common-placed ability in business calculation will be enabled to furnish themselves with conclusive testimony, that by the publication of your debates on Baptism, and your mere sounding "Christian Baptist," you wheedle the Baptists and others of the community out of as much money as would cover the salary of nine out of ten at least of the Baptist ministers.” Then to prove the point, he gives the following exhibit: --


"Dr.                                                                                                       Cr.

“To 2000 copies of Debate with Mr. Walker, at 37 1/2 cents per copy, 750  00
“To 6500 copies of Debate with Mr. M'Calla, at 50 cents per copy,     3250  00
To incidental expences of distributing said Debate, including contingent losses,
say 12 1/2 cents per volume,                                   .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 1062  50
“To balance, .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  4862  50
                                                                                                          $9925  00
"By 2000 copies of Debate with Mr. Walker, at 75 cents per copy,      1500  00
“By sales of 6500 copies of Debate with M’Calla, at $1.25 per copy,   8125  00
“By sale of copy right of Debate with Mr. Walker,   .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 300 00
                                                                                                          $9925  00
“By balance, .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . $4862  50”

By giving a little more latitude to the powerful results of figures, he might, by the same spirit of falsehood, have made me a quite handsome speculator, and have given me 20,000 dollars instead of almost 5000. Now let us coolly examine this forgery. In the first place, it is a positive falsehood that I published 2000 copies of the Debate with Walker. I published but one thousand. In the next place, I paid more for the binding and printing, independent of
[p. 44 - orig. ed.]
paper and all other expences, than 37 1/2 cents per volume. In the third place, it is I positive falsehood that I published six thousand five hundred copies of the Debate with Mac Calla. But six thousand copies were published in all, and of these I published but fifteen hundred. The truth is as follows: Mr. Sala and I, in joint partnership, published three thousand copies, of which fifteen hundred copies were his and fifteen hundred mine. I also agreed to print, bind, and deliver two thousand copies for Mr. Joseph Freeman, and one thousand copies for Mr. Jacob Osbourne, as any person having a printing establisbment would do. These three thousand copies were their property and not mine. But the greatness of my speculation will appear when it is understood that I am legally bound, and my property alone responsible for all the expences incurred in printing and binding six thousand copies, and that I am legally entitled to the profits resulting from the sale of fifteen hundred copies for the whole risk; having no security but the integrity of the young men for whom I finished three thousand copies, and all the materials for the fifteen hundreds copies of Mr. Sala were obtained also on my responsibility. Besides all this, Mr. Sala and myself, out of our joint three thousand copies, have instead of 12 1/2 per volume, given 40 cents per volume to Mr. Heyworth for the sale of five hundred copies that were not subscribd for. These are all facts, in proof of which written contracts and arrangements can he produced. We shall leave this exhibit before the reader without further comment, knowing that friend or foe will be able to appreciate the moral character of the mind of the letter-writer, who, either intentionally or Unintentionally, could descend to such a statement. But what means all this false representation? It is intended to prove a conjecture -- that is, Mr. Greatrake conjectures that avarice is one of my two controling principles of action, and to prove his conjecture, he deliberately writes down falsehoods. But Mr. Greatrake is a regenerated man, and says he was converted in a special manner; and if the righteous sin their iniquities shall be pardoned, and especially when they sin in defence of the orthodox faith. But again I ask, What means all this falsehood and calumny? Why, courteous reader, I will conjecture too: I have, You know, declaimed, and reasoned, and argued too, against the hireling clergy, and if one of them could make it appear that while I have laboured more abundantly than any of the hirelings and taken nothing for it, yet I too was actuated by avarice and ambition; then I must fall into the same ranks and my influence be destroyed. And although but few of my brethren, the Baptists, are in danger of getting rich by the office of an Elder, yet there is now and then such a “Regular Baptist" as Mr. Greatrake, who looks, or seems to look a little too much to his office for something that comes from the mines of Potosi. But conjectures avaunt! --

I am only yet nibbling at a few of the falsehoods in this reverend gentleman's letters. Concerning the baptism of Mr. Church, in one half page Mr. Church himself did, in my presence and in the presence of Mr Walter Scott, convict him of no less than the round number of one dozen. On which I observed to Mr. Greatrake --
[p. 45 - orig. ed.]
"Sir, if, in describing an incident which occurred a few weeks since, in your own city, at your own door, you could, from any cause, make so many false statements, how could you, a perfect stranger in this western country, be supposed or suppose yourself able to give any thing like a fair statement of my history for almost 15 years in this country?" Nay, this is the least outrage committed against Mr. Church; for although Mr. Church had been a citizen of Pittsburgh for 17 years, and has supported an unblemished character, and had been an Elder in a congregation of Covenanters, because (as conjecture would say) Mr. Greatrake was not called to baptize him, he deliberately tells this aged and respectable professor that he holds or is "confirmed in a delusion perhaps that shall only be dissipated in hell -- I mean by delusion, that baptism is salvation." Mr. Church declared that he never held such a sentiment; but the word “perhaps” Mr. G. made emphatic. But, indeed, Mr. Greatrake has gone beyond all bounds in the assertion of falsehoods. He has, too, in things of the greatest notoriety, been quite as unguarded as in things of a more private nature. For instance, he says that I debated a week with Mr. Walker. His words are, “Having for the space of a week, on two different occasions, contended earnestly, viva voce, for baptism bv immersion." Now, did this man ever read this debate!! Instead of a week, it was only a part of two days. Again, he represents me, as with a design of taking vengeance on the Seceders for some conjectured injury, or from ambition or avarice, got up this debate with Mr. Walker, whereas it has been already proved to the public, and to the silencing of the Paido-Baptists, and can be proved again and again, that I was written to three times before I accepted of Mr. Walker's challenge. To Mr. Walker I am, then, indebted for so much fame and money -- for every one knows that the second debate grew out of the former.

But this "Regular Baptist" tells us a part of his object very plainly. He says -- "Confident that you have an undue and deleterious influence in the Baptist church, I would wish to see it destroyed." And yet he acknowledges that a part of that influence is good. He says, "Now it is not my wish to be understood as disapproving of all possible devotedness to the perusal of the Scriptures; on the contrary, I think your fraternity worthy of imitation in this particular." Let this "Regular Baptist" destroy my influence by truth and righteousness, and not by iniquity and falsehood, and then I will rejoice with him. But I have transgressed too far on the patience of my readers. I will only notice his fourth conjecture at present -- "that I wish to place myself at the head of a new party." He appealed to the history of the world if such would not be the result, and I, in an interview with him, appealed to the history of the world that such could not be the result -- that the very motto of the Christian Baptist forbade the idea, and that the world did not afford an instance of any individual advocating such principles placing himself at the head of a party. My grand object being to destroy all sectarianism, and to see all christians united on the one approved and tried foundation.
[p. 46 - orig. ed.]
A more edifying use of this pamphlet will, we hope, be made in the next number. We have been obliged from our regard to the truths we advocate, to make this defence of our character from the attacks of an imprudent, and, to say the best, prejudiced foe. I asked him to make a recantation of the whole pamphlet, and I should publish his recantation. He agreed to make a partial one, and, as respected Mr. Church, a full one; but I told him, in the presence of Messrs. Scott and Church, that no other than a full and unequivocal one would, on my part, be accepted. There is no course, as we once hinted, which we can take, against which carping envy and prating maliciousness will not object. John the Baptist came neither eating nor drinking, and they said, He hath a Devil; † and the Son of Man came, eating and drinking, and they said, Behold a lover of banquets and wine. But "wisdom is justified of her children." -- Ed.
Mr. Greatrake has positively said that the Devil is my master.


[p. 47 - orig. ed.]

Remarks  on  Confessions  of  Faith.

MR. GREATRAKE in his letters, says --

"Again, we know that you propagate the doctrine of the church's independency, so far as to exclude all reference to articles of faith, and principles of order upon which they have been founded, (I am now speaking of the Baptist church) this your writings are uniformly understood to aim at. And really, sir, your attempt to disseminate this sort of sentiment, in the Baptist church in particular, demonstrates your very great attainment in impudence, or that you are extremely ignorant of the constituents of social unity and order, as I shall hereafter endeavor to exhibit. Can you suppose that any reflecting, intelligent member of the Baptist church, will ever conceive favourably of that man, or have confidence in the purity of his motives, who attempts to destroy the very foundation upon which the denomination has risen to such imposing magnitude, in such fair proportions, and with such solidity? Indeed, sir, the attempt on your part, or that of any other person, bears testimony of a radical defect in understanding, and can only leave you, in the exercise of all possible charity, the character of the Knight of La Mancha, or the phrenzied Swede." *

I had thought that the Baptist denomination gloried not in the Westminster creed, but in the New Testament. I think Mr. Benedict in his history of the Baptists, more than once represents this as a fact, that the Bible without comment, is the creed and confession of the Baptists. I know that he declares of the first Baptists in the Unites States, (vol. 1. p. 487,) in giving the history of the oldest church in the union, that, "from first to last, the Bible without comment has been their confession of faith." And I am very sure that it is only in so far as they have adopted and acted on this principle that their progress is estimated in heaven. If they should, on any other principle, proselyte the whole world, they might become famous and respectable on earth, but all in heaven would frown upon them. And there is one fact which all my Baptist friends in this country know, that when the church to which I belonged associated with them, we protested against all creeds of human composition as terms of communion; at the same time declaring what we believed to be Christian truth, in opposition to reigning errors. And although some seem to think there is no

* We never descend to reply to such composition. We think the mere citation of it a sufficient act of humiliation, and a sufficient refutation of it in the estimation of all sober christians.
[p. 48 - orig. ed.]

difference between a verbal or written declaration of faith and recognizing a human creed as a term of communion, we see a very great difference, so much at least as to forbid an effort on our part to make our own declaration of faith a term of communion to others. The New Testament, as respects Christian faith and practice, is our only creed, form of discipline, and the avowal of the One Foundation, our only bond of union. I object to all human creeds as terms of communion from the following consideration: --

1. They are predicated upon a gross insult to the wisdom and benevolence of the Founder of christianity. They, in effect, say, that "the form of sound words" which he has communicated in writing, is not so well adapted to the exigencies of Christians as some other form into which human wisdom and benevolence can place them. For if the New Testament is not so sufficient and suitable as a creed of human contrivance or arrangement, this creed exhibits greater wisdom and benevolence than the New Testament.

2. All creeds as terms of communion, being designed to exclude the evil and receive the good, are the most foolish of all expedients which human folly has adopted. For who that will see, does not see, that good men, that is men of Christian integrity, will never subscribe or swear to believe that which they do not believe, for the sake of a name, a place, or an office in any church; whereas evil men who want a name, or a place, or an office in any church, will subscribe whether they believe or not.

3. They are the sources of division. They make an assent to philosophical views of Revelation a bond of union, and consequently every new discovery, or dissent from an ancient one, occasions a new heresy and a new sect. Exclude him; for "how can two walk together unless they are agreed," says the orthodox.

4. They are, in one word, every way wicked. Inasmuch as they have always led to persecution, and have produced enmity, variance, and strife as their legitimate results. For these and a hundred other reasons, which time may specify and illustrate, I will never subscribe, nor swear to any other confession of my Christian faith, than the New Testament.

Notes: (forthcoming)


No 3.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., Oct. 4, 1824.                               Vol. II.
"Style no man on earth your Father: for he alone is your father who is in heaven; and all ye are brethren. Assume not the title of Rabbi; for you have only one teacher: . -- Neither assume the title of Leader; for you have only one leader -- the Messiah."
Matt. xxiii 8-10. . . Campbell's Translation.   

"Prove all things: hold fast that which is good."
(Paul the Apostle.    

[p. 49 - orig. ed.]


"There is one spirit in all the clergy, whether they be Romanist or Protestant, Baptist or Paido Baptist, learned or unlearned, their own workmanship, or the workmanship of others."
Amongst the Baptists it is to be hoped there are but few clergy; and would to God there were none! The grand and distinguishing views of the Baptists must be grossly perverted before they could tolerate one such creature. The Baptist views of a congregation of saints, if we understand them correctly, are such as the following: --

1. A congregation or church of Jesus Christ is an assembly of intelligent individuals, who, "by the washing of regeneration, and renewal of the Holy Spirit," voluntarily associate to walk in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord Jesus Christ, declaring allegiance to the King Eternal, Immortal, and Invisible; and renouncing every other authority in heaven, on the earth, or under the earth.

2. Such a society having pledged themselves to one another, by the profession of the faith, and by the baptism ordained by Jesus Christ, have all power, liberty, and right to administer all the ordinances of Christ; and to do every act and thing that appertains to the order, discipline, and worship of the christian church; to choose out from among themselves bishops and deacons, that is, overseers and servants, to ordain or appoint such; and then to submit themselves to such, as to them that watch for their souls, and must give account, and all this without the interference of any ecclesiastical authority on earth.

A pretty good illustration of this principle, we find in the first Baptist church in the United States, A. D. 1636, a little over a hundred years after the reformation. Twelve persons, among whom was the famous Roger Williams, the first settler and founder of Rhode Island, desirous of forming a church, and first of being immersed in the primitive style -- did meet together to deliberate on these topics. How to obtain a suitable administrator, was a
[p. 50 - orig. ed.]
point of some difficulty. "At length," as Benedict says, when they understood the scriptures, the "candidates for communion nominated and appointed Mr. Ezekiel Holliman, a man of gifts and piety, to baptize Mr. Williams; and who, in return, baptized Mr. Holliman and the other ten." Although the circumstances of the case compelled this measure, yet if it were not essentially right, that is, scriptural, it never could be justified; and I think that man is very inadequate to teach the christian religion, who is not able to justify this procedure upon the grand principles of revelation and of reason. This first church in the union also appointed its own Bishops and Deacons according to the primitive style. *

Every person possessed in a good degree of the qualifications laid down by the apostle Paul as essential to the Christian Bishop, and who, after having been first well proved by a congregation of disciples, is ordained or appointed by the congregation to the overseer's office, in which he is to exercise the functions of a bishop, every such person, I say, is to be esteemed and valued as a bishop, and by no means to be ranked among the clergy. But some few Baptists, tickled by the love of novelty, and lured by the false majesty of Presbyterianism, exhibited in a classical priesthood, of ordinaries, co-ordinates, subordinates, priests and Levites; ruling elders, licentiates, reverends and Doctors of Divinity, have compromised the distinguishing features of their own grand peculiarities, and palmed upon themselves a species of demagogues, who, while they have all the airs, hauteur, and arrogance of some Paido-Baptist priests, have neither their erudition, nor their talents, nor their policy. They can neither wear the gown decently, nor conceal the cloven foot.

To do this in such a way as not to give umbrage to the pious members of this community it is necessary to mock the ancient principles of this once humble and unassuming people. And so it comes to pass that a number of pious young men, of poor circumstances, but of virtuous habits, are taken out of the churches, to be made Bishops of other churches, and after taught to conjugate amo and tupto, school of the prophets, and being drilled in the art and mystery of making a sermon, set out to find a church which wants a young foppish gentleman, who says to the old Bishops, "Stand by -- I have seen, and sure I ought to know." But how will he get into the church so as to be chosen from among the brethren is the point! The teachers of the schools of the prophets have settled this point. He gives in his letter, becomes a member a week or two, and is then chosen from among themselves; and so the Baptist principles are compromised. Thus a young gentleman filled with vast ideas of his own little though noble self, mounts the rostrum, and is called ELDER, though the word is a lie when applied to him, and obliges all the old and experienced saints to be silent, who are a thousand times better qualified than he to be overseers. Thus I have known a young Baptist priest made and finished in Philadelphia, go to the state of New York, preach a few times to a rich congregation, give

* See Benedict's History, vol. 1, p. 475.
[p. 51 - orig. ed.]

in his letter, and in two or three weeks be called out from among the brethren to become their Bishop; and that too, before he has got a wife, or a house, or a family to rule well. † Such teachers I must rank among the clergy, and, indeed, they soon prove themselves to have a full portion, and sometimes a double portion, of the spirit of the priesthood. I hope, however, the number of such amongst the Baptists is small. Perhaps the whole aggregate number is not greater than the aggregate of good well meaning men among the Paido-Baptist clergy. They are not all Israel, which are of Israel, is proverbially true, of Baptists, and Paido-Baptists; though in different acceptations of the word Israel.

There is one vast difference, one essential and all-important difference betwixt the Baptists and Paido-Baptist views and societies. The Baptist views of the church of Jesus Christ are constitutionally correct; the Paido-Baptist views are unconstitutional. To make myself more intelligible -- there are to be found in the Baptist system such views of the Christian church, as, if carried out to their legitimate issue, will place them on Apostolic grounds; but the Paido-Baptists would, if carried out, place them to the bosom of the Roman Pontiff. Yes, the one system would place the church upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself the chief corner-stone. The other system would place it upon St. Peter as the rock. The Baptist system is capable of being reformed or brought back again to the constitution of the kingdom of Heaven; the Paido-Baptist cannot. It must be destroyed. The one system carries in its bosom the means of its purification, the other, the fire that must consume it. The foundation of the former needs but to have the rubbish cleared away; the foundation of the latter must be totally razed. The constitution of the one is essentially of Divine construction; the constitution of the other is altogether human. The good confession of the King of Martyrs before Pontius Pilate, is received by the Baptist and rejected by the Paido-Baptist system.

Mr. Greatrake speaks in a very flattering style to the Paido-Baptists --

† Let not the reader suppose when I speak of young priests made such by grammar, English, Greek, or Latin, I have in my view the Rev. Mr. GREATRAKE. For although he tells the citizens of the West that they are in a deplorable state of ignorance, as devoid of all the means of intelligence he had in the East. and although he quotes two or three scripts of Latin in his pamphlet, yet he affords infallible evidence that he never learned a grammar in his life, English, Greek, or Latin. And, indeed, although we are very ignorant in the West, and have much to learn, I must say that the priests coming over the mountains generally are little better. I suppose, however, the learned ones all abide there; for, of those I have been acquainted with, in the character of emigrants, they are mostly inferior to the western clergy in general information, and always inferior in biblical knowledge. And if Mr. Greatrake is one of their regenerated ones, I sincerely say "from all such may we be delivered."
[p. 52 - orig. ed.]

"For with all their spots and imperfections, they approach the nearest to what is your glory -- I mean experimental religion and solid piety." To say nothing of the near, I do not know who are the nearer, if the Padio-Baptists are the nearest. And as the Paido-Baptists are Methodists, Presbyterians, Episcopalians, and Catholics, I think Mr. Greatrake was, surely sufficiently latitudinarian to avoid the imputation of being uncharitable. But this will be well received by the Herodians, and king Herod and the procurator Pontius Pilate, will feast together. §

This gentleman is very much concerned for the peace of his Paido-Baptist brethren, and is very much displeased with me for having disturbed their tranquility. He says, the sum of your debates -- give just as much infirmation as two Apostles ‡ give us in less than so many verses, when they say (Paul one of them) "We are buried with Christ by baptism," and (the other Apostle Philip!) "If thou believest with all thine heart thou mayest be baptized." But reader, mark well the conclusion: "Hence, had your object been simply to establish the mind of the Baptists in the validity of baptism by immersion, or to make proselytes to that mode, nothing more was necessary than reference to the passages of Scripture we have quoted, or some other similar ones; for, if men will not hear

§ I think it unnecessary to notice the calumnies and slanders of the author of the letters bestowed on the Church of Christ in Pittsburgh. I have said bewstowed, and, indeed, they are perfectly gratuitous, inasmuch as they are notoriously unmerited on the part of the slandered. But to vindicate this church, with its bishops, from aspersions so evidently false and malicious, would be an insult to the good sense of the citizens of that city who are acquainted with them either as citizens or Christians. I have only to say that this pamphleteer has honored me too much in representing them as my disciples. In this acceptation of the term disciple, I am as much their disciple as any of them is mine. I hope we are both disciples of a more exalted teacher and of a more infallible guide. If it were consistent with my views of the Christian religion to have disciples, I would ardently pray to God that I might have myriads of such disciples. But our motto is, Call no man Master or Teacher on earth; and the fact is, that I have been profited as much from my acquaintance with some of the members of that church, as I believe any of them has been profited by me.

‡ This reverend teacher exhibits all through the grossest ignorance of the Scriptures. Here he calls Philip, the Deacon, an Apostle. Who does not know that Philip said to the eunuch, "if thou believest?" &c. Again, he calls Peter, the Apostle, a false teacher; and speaks of Barnabas being led away by "false teachers," whereas it was by the dissimulation of the Apostle Peter, that the Jewish brethren (not teachers) were led away, and by them jointly, Barnabas. At another time he represents baptism and the washing of regeneration as if contradistinguished by the Apostle; whereas every intelligent Christian knows that baptism is called by the Apostle the washing of regeneration. These are but a few of the glaring proofs of his Biblical knowledge!!
[p. 53 - orig. ed.]

Christ and his apostles respecting the truth, neither will they hear you." Let us now turn this powerful argument to the interest of Mr. Greatrake (for every one sees that, in it, I am not only condemned, but every living soul that has either spoken or written one word of this subject) -- "Hence, if Mr. Greatrake's object was simply to edify a church or convert sinners, he would just read a few verses to each, and not receive a salary for preaching, when he declares that he knows that if they hear not Christ and his Apostles, neither will they hear him." Where, then, is the value received?

But to resume the letters of the Rev. Mr. Greatrake once more, and to make some improvement thereof, I will, in the first place, pay myself a compliment, or rather I will let Mr. Greatrake do it. There is no one, I presume, who reads these letters, will hesitate in saying, that Mr. Greatrake has exhibited the greatest good will to blast my character (for his letters are solely an attack on my character.) If then, a Rev. "Regular Baptist," with this manifest intention, was not able to produce one word I had said or written, or one action of my life, for 15 years, the period he embraces in his area of defamation, I conjecture that I must have been peculiarly fortunate in having given no occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully. While I feel, and now acknowledge this handsome compliment, I have only to add my regret that the gentleman has not left it in my power to thank him for it. We shall now let him exhibit his plan of attack. In his address to the unconverted whom he wishes to rouse with indignation against me, he says -- "If [remember if] you have ever understood him to say, [whether he said so or not] either in his preachings or writings, that the ordinance of baptism has any tendency to wash away sins, or to infuse holiness into the soul of man, he has said that which is at direct variance with the Baptist faith; and if he has said it as a Baptist, it is a foul slander upon them; -- or if he has said, under the name of a Baptist, that there is no Holy Ghost to operate especially and essentially upon the souls of sinners in conversion, he has denied the faith of the Baptist church -- of if you have understood him [whether he has or has not said so] as saying that the moral law of God is not a rule of conduct for the believer in Christ; that also is contrary to the Baptist faith. If he has said that prayer, after a man has believed, or professed to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, is not a duty and a mark of saving faith, that also is in opposition to the sentiments of the Baptists. If he has said, that the preaching of the gospel since the Apostolic days is gratuitous, and unauthorized by the Lord Jesus Christ, that is likewise foreign to the faith of the Baptist church. And if he has advanced such doctrines as the foregoing, while professedly a Baptist, what confidence can be placed in his honesty or veracity?" The reader will recollect that he arraigned my motives before the awful tribunal of conjecture, relative to what he calls the prominent incidents of my life; and also, he will remember, that, in my former notice of this work, I afforded evidence that his conjectures were every one false, and that he appeared to have deliberately fabricated falsehoods to help out with his conjectures. The reader will now see that my sentiments are attacked in the same manner as my motives, and although
[p. 54 - orig. ed.]
they are before the public in a tangible and precise form, yet Mr. Greatrake would rather conjecture that they are what they are not, than quote my words and shew what they are. This is quite consistent, however, with the spirit of Mr. Greatrake. In the above extract there are seven IFS, from which positive conclusions are drawn, for although he begins with ifs, he ends by assertions. It is true these seven ifs are to be found in the 28th page, near the close of his pamphlet, but I cited them from this page because of their being recapitulated and placed together in one view, They are his only premises. Now take one assertion, amongst many, for a specimen of his conclusions: "Saul was quite as great, scholastic, and intellectual a man as you, and yet he was subject to this awful delusion, that is, he denied Jesus Christ of Nazareth! You, the Holy Ghost from Heaven!" Par nobile fratum! The celebrated Horne Tooke represents himself as having suffered much from the improper application of two prepositions; but had he been tortured by four conjectures and seven ifs, he would not have complained of the potency of two particles. We despatched the four conjectures of the Reverend Mr. Great-Rake in our last. I would not even have demurred so much at the introduction of seven ifs, if he had not deduced from such premises positive and bold assertions. What logical or rational connexion is there between saying if a man denies the Holy Spirit, and in the next breath affirming from his if that he does. His doing so must either be owing to the weakness of his intellect or the perversity of his heart. One of the two must be assigned; if the former, it calls for pity -- if the latter, for contempt. But in either case I am slandered. It was just every way as true that Paul said "let us do evil that good may come," as that I have denied the Holy Spirit. It was just as true that the Messiah cast out demons by Beelzebub, as that I have said, or thought, or taught, that believers ought not to pray. It is just as true that the Saviour of the world was a Samaritan and had a demon, as that I have said, or thought, or taught that the gospel ought not now to be preached. It was just as true that Paul was beside himself and mad, as that I have said or taught any one of the seven ifs in the sense which he insinuates. What I have said on the law, on baptism, and on preaching, is already before the public, in what I conceive definite and intelligible language; as also on all topics embraced in his seven ifs. To these I refer the inquisitive. I would also add, that I am prepared to defend every position advanced on these topics, against intellects, and pens, and tongues, guided by truth and virtue, more puissant than a council of three-score-and-six Mr. Greatrakes.

But, indeed, I have good reason to fear the talents of this "RegUlaI Baptist," for when I asked him, in the presence of the two gentlemen mentioned in my last, on what grounds, and from which of my publications he affirmed that I denied the operations of the Holy Spirit, he referred to my Essay on the Work of the Holy Spirit, in the 1st No. of 2d, vol. of the Christian Baptist, saying, "that I there taught that all its operations were confined to the Apostolic age." I answered, that no such an idea was either expressed or implied. He then excused himself by saying “he had not the number by him, but had so understood it.”
[p. 55 - orig. ed.]
But why should I deign to disprove conjectures and suppositions by argument, and especially when there cannot be found an individual in the whole community to which I am known, that can, and I think I may add, that would concur with Mr. Greatrake in making such statements. I fearlessly assert that he cannot find a second, friend or foe of mine, of any standing in society that will affix his name in full to such accusations; and we have already seen that the gentleman himself feared to put his own name to it.

I will not condescend to present four conjectures and seven ifs respecting this anonymous scribe, though I know that by the cogency of four conjectures and seven ifs I could present him in awful caricature. I will leave him to the reflections of his own mind and to the suggestions of his own conscience, well knowing that if he is one "born from above," he will come forward, and as openly and unequivocally confess his faults as he has calumniated me; and until then, though he would tell the people that he was caught up unto the third heaven, and "heard things unutterable,” I will consider him, and for my life I could not consider him otherwise, than as "a heathen man and a publican.”

Before dismissing this subject, may we not deduce some instructions of importance. The Saviour of the world and his holy Aposties, as well as the ancient Prophets, often inveighed against the doctors and false teachers of their times, but never did they support their reproofs or predicate their remonstrances upon any other grounds than evident and irrefragable argument and fact. The consequence was, their benevolent efforts were ascribed to evil motives, and the most foul and base slanders were the returns they received from such as were not benefited by their kind and suitable endeavors. How excellent their example in those instances, as well as in all others! When the Jews took up stones to kill the Saviour, how admirable his conduct! He said, "Many good works have I shewn you from my father; for which of those works do ye stone me?" When they cavilled at his language as too vague and ambigious, he asked. "Why do ye not understand my speech? -- even because ye cannot hear my word." And when they yet believed not, he asked, "Which of you convicteth meof a crime? Now if I say the truth, why do you not believe me?" -- When they told him he had a devil, he replied, "I have not a devil; but I honor my Father, and ye dishonor me." And when they treated him with every contumely as an impostor, even to suspension on the accursed tree, he said, "Father forgive them, for they know not what they do!" His martyr Stephen, while he faithfully called his countrymen "stiffnecked, and uncircumcised in heart and ears, a race of persecutors, exclaimed, amidst the bruises they inflicted on him, "Lord, lay not this sin to their charge." While the history of their lives affords us a thousand lessons on a thousand topics, their example in these instances should be ever present in the remembrance of those who may be honored with suffering shame for his name. Christians, however, should take heed that they suffer not as evil doers, or busy-bodies in other men's matters; but if they suffer as Christians, let them not be ashamed, but let them glorify God on this account.
[p. 56 - orig. ed.]
There is one thought, and O! how grand and solemn a thought! which, methinks, should annihilate every envious, malicious, and revengeful feeing -- we must all stand together before the judgment seat of Christ!! -- Yes, the accuser and the accused, the slanderer and the slandered must meet there. To be then saluted with "Well done, good and faithful servant!" will be more desirable than all the honors, and wealth, and fame, that all the sons of Adam could bestow.

We may also see that the spirit of the world and of the clergy of this world is always one and the same. The history of the world does not afford one instance where the popular clergy, those of influence and popularity amongst the people, ever espoused the cause of reformation. All the famed refomations that ever have been canonized, were effected, to speak in common style, in spite of the reigning clergy. Many of the temporizers, it iS true, came up in the rear, when they saw it to be their interest. Even in the history of the progress of Christianity in Jerusalem, given us by Luke, to the eternal honor of the priesthood, we are informed, that after immense multitudes were converted, and "the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly -- great company of the priests were obedient to the faith.”

There is one thing to me most obvious, that in proportion as the scriptures are understood and the genius of Christianity apprehended, there will appear less necessity for priests; and some of the clergy seem to know it so well, that they fear the experiment of putting their admirers upon the search after the character of primitive Christianity. They would rather extol their present creed, and flatter their people with the idea that every thing is about what it ought to be amongst them, than to hazard a doubt that they have departed from the faith and order of the primitive church.

Let then all those who are looking for a place in the new heavens and in the new earth, be diligent in exhibiting the excellency of Christianity in them own lIves; and while they meet with opposition, let them be encouraged, that this has been the peculiar honor of the virtuous in every age -- "for so persecuted they the Prophets which were before you."   -- Ed.



David the king and prophet foretold that when Messiah the Lord would ascend to his throne, he would bestow gifts upon men. This passage of Psalm lviii. 18. Paul (Eph. iv. 8.) applies to our Lord. When he ascended he saith, "he gave," and by spiritual gifts qualified "some apostles, and some prophets, and some
[p. 57 - orig. ed.]
evangelists, and some pastors and teachers." Peter also, on the day of Pentecost, ascribed all the stupendous gifts vouchsafed on that day to the Lord Jesus. "Therefore," says he, (Acts ii. 33) "being exalted by the right hand of God, and having received the promise of the Holy Spirit from the Father, He hath poured out that which you now see and hear." These "distributions of the Holy Spirit," as Macknight renders Heb. ii. 4. issued in the perfect qualification of Apostles with "the word of wisdom;" Prophets with the "word of knowledge;" Evangelists with "tongues and miracles;" Pastors with an immediate possession of all the requisites to feeding the flock, and Teachers with the means necessary to instructing the novitiates in all the Christian doctrine. It may be necessary to remark, that the pastors and teachers mentioned in this passage are to be distinguished from the ordinary bishops or elders of a Christian church, inasmuch as the elders or bishops are to be qualified by ordinary means and to be selected by their brethren for the possession of those ordinary attainments mentioned by Paul in his epistles; whereas those pastors and teachers given on the ascension of the Lord, were as instantaneously prepared for their offices as Paul was made an Apostle; they were not only converted to the Christian faith, but, in an instant, by the gifts of the Holy Spirit, qualified to teach the whole religion. That this is no conjecture, but matter of fact, will appear from Eph. iv. 8-13. Three things are distinctly stated in this context to which we refer the reader, and these three must be distinctly noticed to understand the passage. The first is, that these apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers, were gifts bestowed by Jesus the Lord on his receiving the throne of the universe. The second is, that they were given for an immediate exigency, or for a purpose which the infant state of the church required, that is, sath the apostle Paul, (v. 12.) "for the sake of fitting the saints for the work of the ministry, in order to the building of the body of Christ" -- (Macknight) -- for fitting the converted Jews and Gentiles for the ordinary work of the ministry or service requisite to the building of the church. The third is, that these supernaturally endowed apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors
[p. 58 - orig. ed.]
and teachers, were to continue only for a limited time, marked by an adverb in Greek and English, which always denotes the time how long -- mechri, "until we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, even to the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ, that we, the church, be not always composed of nepioi, babes." -- Dr. Macknight in the following words: "These supernaturally endowed teachers are to continue in the church until, being fully instructed by their discourses and writings, we all who compose the church, come through one faith and knowledge of the son of God, to perfect manhood as a church, even to the measure of the stature which when full grown it ought to have: so that the church thus instructed and enlarged, is able to direct and defend itself without supernatural aid."

These three things being noticed, it is evident that these apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers, were all supernatural characters, for a precise object, and for a limited time; that this object was answered by their discourses and writings, and, that this limited time has expired. For the benefit of those of weak understanding it may be observed, that although apostles were appointed before Pentecost, even from the commencement of the Lord's ministry, yet they were not qualified fully for this peculiar work, until endowed with those supernatural gifts bestowed on Messiah's sitting down on the throne of his Father, after his ascension into heaven; and consequently, it might be said, most justly, that on his ascension, "he gave apostles," as well as "prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers." It may also be noticed for the benefit of the same class of readers, that while the word of wisdom was given to one -- the word of knowledge to another -- faith to work miracles to a third; to another the gifts of healing; to another the inworkings of powers, that is ability to produce or work in others the ability of working miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another diverse kinds of foreign tongues; [added in reprints: "to another the interpretation of foreign tongues"] by one and the same Spirit; yet some individuals possessed more than one of those gifts, and the apostles many, if not all of them; and one in particular, which distinguished them from, and elevated them above all others, viz. the ability of conferring some particular gift by the imposition of their hands.

These gifts differed both in their nature and dignity, and some envied those possessed of the more splendid gifts, which gave rise to the apostle Paul's illustration of these gifts, in the 12th, 13th, and 14th chapters of his first epistle to the Corinthians, where he shows that although there was a great diversity of gifts, yet the matter of those gifts, if I may so speak, was the same; for they were all distributions of the same Spirit; their object was the same, for they were ministries of the same Lord; and their origin or authority was the same, for the same God inworked them in all the spiritual men. And while some were eminent for the word of wisdom, which appears to have been the doctrine of the gospel communicated by inspiration; others for the word of knowledge, or an inspired knowledge of the types and prophecies in the ancient revelations; others for faith which, as a spiritual gift, "led the spiritual men, without hesitation, to attempt the working of miracles;" * others for the gifts
* This faith, which the apostle calls a spiritual gift, be contradistinguishes from the common faith of christian in this discourse. "A faith that removes mountains" he shows to be different from the faith of christians, in this grand respect, that the spiritual gift called faith was to pass away -- was but for a time; but the faith that saves the soul was to abide always. The scope and spirit of his argument in the 13th chapter of this epistle, taken into view with the context, is, "You Corinthians are coveting the best gifts, but come, now, and I will show you a better way;" for, says be, all these gifts shall cease, tongues, &c. shall vanish away. And when all these gifts shall have ceased, faith, hope, and love, these three abide co-existent
[p. 59 - orig. ed.]

of healing, &c. &c. it was to be remembered that these distributions or these manifestations of the Spirit were given to every member of the church of Corinth; or a manifestation of the Spirit was given to every spiritual man to profit withal, not for his own honor or benefit, but for the good of the brotherhood; which the apostle in the subsequent context compares to a human body composed of many members -- no member created for itself, or for its own benefit, but for the service of the whole.

To shew more fully the nature and use of those gifts, it may be necessary to take a view of the church of Corinth, of which church the apostle says, "It came behind in no gift." "You," says he, speaking to the Corinthians, "are enriched with every gift by him, even with all speech and knowledge." "When the testimony of Christ was confirmed among you by the miracles which I wrought and the spiritual gifts I conferred on you, so that you come behind in no gift." In the history of this church, then, we may expect to learn the nature and use of those gifts, to as much advantage as from the history of any other.

Corinth at this time was the metropolis of the province of Achaia, and was as famous as Athens itself for the Grecian arts and sciences. Cicero calls it "totius Graeciae lumen," the light of all Greece; and Florus calls it "Graeciae decus," the ornament of Greece. Refined and intelligent as Corinth was by Grecian sciences and arts, it was, through its luxuries and wealth, the most dissolute, lascivious, and debauched city in its day. Here Paul preached and taught for 18 months the doctrine of Christ, and converted a very numerous church, composed of some distinguished Jews, but chiefly of the idolatrous and profligate Pagans. Luke tells us, "Many of the Corinthians, hearing, believed
with the present world; but the greatest of these three graces is love,
[p. 60 - orig. ed.]

which will continue forever, not only co-existent with the present state, but when this state shall be consummated. Now the better way is to cultivate love, than to he coveting spiritual gifts, though of the most splendid rank. To see that this faith, hope, and love, and even love which is the greatest and best of all, is emphatically contradistinguished from spiritual gifts, we have only to read the close of the 13th and the commencement of the 14th chapter. It reads thus: And now abides faith, hope, love, these three, but the greatest of these is love. Follow after love, therefore, and desire spiritual gifts, but of these the chief is prophecy. The faith that was always to abide is not once classed amongst spiritual gifts. The only passage in our translation that might, by common readers, be so understood, is Eph. ii. 8. "For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God." Leaving system out of view and following the scriptures, we find the sentiment to be as Macknight has rendered it. "For by grace you are saved through faith, and this affair is not of yourselves; it is the gift of God" -- not charisma, a spiritual gift, but doron, a favor or common bounty. Indeed, the antecedent to that, every linguist knows is not faith; for pistis, faith, is feminine, and touto, that, is neuter. Let not, however, any systematic conscience be alarmed at this translation of the celebrated Calvinist. It is unanswerably correct. Nor does it at all interfere with the idea of salvation being of grace, of free grace; for if salvation, as a whole, is through the grace of God, faith, a part of that salvation, is of grace also; but here we are speaking of spiritual gifts, amongst which this faith is not one.
[p. 61 - orig. ed.]

and were baptized." From the history of this church, gathered from the Acts of the Apostles and these epistles, it appears that there was a schism in it, envying, strife, and many irregularities; so that the presence of those gifts did not place the church out of the reach of those human corruptions, but were necessary to the illumination and confirmation of the disciples in the faith which purified the heart by its intrinsic influences. Indeed, we find that even the spiritual men themselves needed the word of exhortation and admonition for their imprudence in the management of those gifts; which at once teaches us that those gifts had no general influence, and were not necessarily productive of the appropriate effects of the saving and sanctifying truth in the minds of the subjects of them. No wonder, then, that the Apostle Paul commended the cultivation of brotherly love as a "more excellent way" than the coveting of the most splendid gifts. It is evident from the face of the first epistle, that even among the spiritual men there were blemishes and imprudences that required the castigation of the apostle. The apostle, indeed, settles the contest about the precedency of those gifts, and places them in due subordination to one another. A free and full translation of the 28th verse represents the matter thus: "The chief members of the church are thus to be ranked as God has distinguished them by gifts. First, apostles, who being endowed with the word of wisdom, from them all must receive the knowledge of the gospel. Secondly, the superior prophets, who, possessing the word of knowledge, are qualified to interpret the ancient revelations. Thirdly, teachers, embracing all who boldly declare the doctrine of Christ, illustrate it, and confirm it by miracles. Next, those who communicate to others the spiritual powers. Then, those who possess the gifts of healing diseases. Helpers, who, speaking by inspiration to the edification of the church, are fitted to assist the superior teachers, and to help the faith and joy of others. Directors, who, by the gift of discerning spirits, are fitted
[p. 62 - orig. ed.]
to direct the church. Lastly, persons who, having the gift of speaking different kinds of foreign languages, can preach to every nation in its own language." But yet the church can never be composed of all such, no more than the body can be all eye or all ear; for, says the apostle, "Are all apostles? Are all prophets?" No, indeed. The nature of those gifts, however splendid, was evidently only adapted, and their use merely designed, to illustrate and confirm that doctrine, which in its primary and essential results, when received and understood, purges, purifies, elevates, and ennobles the mind of the recipient. Hence the Holy One prayed, "Sanctify them through your truth."

Again, when the Lord spake of the Holy Spirit, (which was to proceed from his Father and himself, when he should be glorified,) he assured his disciples that this Monitor would testify of him, and would not only conduct them into all truth, but when he is come, "he will convince the world concerning sin, and concerning righteousness, and concerning judgment: concerning sin, because they believe not on me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the Prince of this World is judged. He will glorify me." The signs and wonders, and distributions of this Holy Spirit, the Apostle Paul declared were the confirmations by which Jesus was glorified in the world, and the testimony of the witnesses rendered credible and omnipotent. So, on Pentecost, the unbelieving Jews were convinced of their sin in not believing that Jesus was Lord Messiah, by the Holy Spirit confirming their word by signs following or accompanying. They, were convinced of his righteousness, or of his being the righteous Messenger of Jehovah, by the proofs the Spirit gave of his having been well received in heaven by his Father; and they were convinced of judgment, because it was evident from the testimony of the apostles, confirmed by those splendid signs of the Holy Spirit, that, by his cross, Jesus had triumphed over principalities and powers, and had vanquished him that had the power of death. Thus the Saviour promised and thus it was performed, and thus the world, infidel
[p. 63 - orig. ed.]
Jews and infidel Gentiles, were convinced of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. The Apostle Paul also declares in that same epistle, chapter xiv. that "foreign languages are for a sign, not to believers, but to unbelievers." Now the sign by which the Holy Spirit glorified Jesus on the day of Pentecost, was that of foreign tongues; diverse, or separated tongues of fire, appeared on the heads of the witnesses, and they spake in foreign tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. This, then, was such a sign to the unbelieving Jews as to convince three thousand of them of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment; and hence they gladly received the word that announced to them the remission of their sins and the promise of the Holy Spirit. Thus the word came in "demonstration of the Spirit and with power," and their faith rested not on the wisdom of human reason, but on the power of God, thus exhibited with the word.

In our next essay this same topic will be further illustrated. As we promised to investigate this important subject with some degree of attention, we must request the patience of our readers to be put into requisition; and we must also remind them, that our object is to present just what the scriptures teach on this subject, not attempting to support any system of divinity, however canonized or extolled. But in these things every disciple of Christ will suffer no man to judge for him while he is able to read the revelation of God in his own tongue -- at least such ought to be his determination.   -- Ed.

Note 1: Continuing his comments (as given above in the notes accompanying the Aug. 2, 1824 articles), Rev. Whitsitt says: "Mr. Campbell again undertakes the task of giving satisfaction to the advocates of a restoration of miraculous powers. There the subject of "spiritual gifts" is examined at length, and various intimations were put forward to show that according to the original intention it was provided that supernaturally endowed prophets, apostles, evangelists and pastors and teachers should continue only for a limited period of time. But unhappily for him it was not in his reach to produce a "Thus saith the Lord" to that effect, and Rigdon in strict harmony with the teachings of his master was resolved to be content with nothing less than an express precept or an approved precedent. As often, therefore, as the arguments of Mr. Campbell were renewed, his disciple might appeal to the guiding principle of their sect and exclaim: "Where the Scriptures are silent we are silent."

Note 2: What Rev. Whitsitt implies in his current remarks (but developes more fully elsewhere in his book) is that, since the biblical scriptures "are silent" on many of the millinarian matters that so concerned Sidney Rigdon during the mid-1820s, that Rigdon took it upon himself to supply the Campbellite literalists with holy scriptures that did speak regarding doctrines such as spiritual gifts, the ministering of angels, etc. Whitsitt concludes that the supra-Campbellite doctrines thus inserted into the Book of Mormon could only have originated with an enthusiastic, pre-Millennial Campbellite dissenter such as Sidney Rigdon -- though, on the grounds of heterodox theology alone, there seems to be no reason to exclude Rigdonite theologians (if such a term is not an oxymoron) as Parley P. Pratt and Orson Hyde from the list of pre-Millennial Campbellite dissenters whose religious views coincided with the doctrines found in the Book of Mormon.


Vol. II.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., Dec. 6, 1824.                               No. 5.


SIR -- Upon receiving the proposal for your intended monthly paper, I immediately became a warm and interested advocate for the encouragement of the work, and have ever since continued to read it with pleasure, and, I hope, with profit. The first and leading sentence in your proposal was that which chiefly and forcibly engaged my attention; namely, that "the Christian Baptist shall espouse the cause of no religious sect, excepting that ancient sect, called christians first at Antioch " I was naturally led to expect, according to my conception of things, that you would have commenced with, at least, a brief, comprehensive, and authenticated view, or scriptural demonstration, of the religious principles and practice of that ancient and venerable sect: a sect which I long wished to see drawn forth out of the obscurity of antiquity, and justly exhibited to public view -- not, indeed, in the glowing colors of the poet or orator, but in the incontrovertible items of scriptural facts, which no intelligent professor of the divine authenticity of the sacred record, could, with any show of reason, controvert. Such an exhibition, distinctly and fairly delineated, would, in my opinion, have happily served as an expressive life-picture or a frontispiece to the work; and furnished the reader with a proper and authentic contrast to the present corrupt exhibitions of Christianity. Though you have not attempted this, in the manner I supposed, and fondly expected; yet I must acknowledge, as I most cheerfully do with heartfelt [approbation], that you have contributed much towards it, in a variety of interesting particulars, which it is not my intention at present to collect, and present together in a combined point of view; but rather, with your permission, to submit to the consideration of your readers what appears to me, on incontrovertible documents, to have been the peculiar and distinguishing principles and practice of that ancient and venerable sect, whose cause you so decidedly and zealously appear to advocate, in the face of almost universal opposition. If what I shall offer, shall appear, what I most sincerely desire and intend, a genuine exhibition, or life picture, of the ancient Antiochian sect under consideration, it is well: if otherwise, I shall thank you, sir, or any of your readers, to favor me, and the public, with such corrections as will do justice to the original; and cause those prime heritors of the christian name to live once more within the sphere of human contemplation, should it be only on paper. Your compliance, &c. will much oblige, sir, yours and the public's humble servant,

Acts xi. 26.

The distinguished subjects of this essay were, by their historian Luke, denominated "the disciples" and "the saints," and both with a manifest reference to the Lord Jesus. The same author also informs us that they were accustomed to consider and address each other as brethren; wherefore he likewise uses this epithet in speaking of the characters under consideration. He also styles the aggregate or assemblage of those collected and dwelling together in any place, "the church in," or "at," such a place; or simply "the church;" and in the plural, "the churches." For the authenticity of these remarks, as well as for a variety of other important items respecting the subjects of our present inquiry, the reader is humbly and earnestly requested to peruse with attention the first twelve chapters of the history of these people, with the first three verses of the xiiith; viz. of the Acts of the Apostles.

Now, as descriptive epithets are always intended to convey to us some knowledge of the thing described, let us advert a little to the import of the above epithets which were given to those people individually and collectively considered, and also how they came by those epithets, or on what account they received them. As to the first, namely, "disciple," we know it signifies scholar or learner; that is, one who subjects himself to, or under the teaching of, a certain master, that he may learn and practise his instructions for the very purpose for which they were given. Now, when any person puts him self thus under the guidance and direction of another, he actually becomes his disciple. It has been already observed, that the members of this ancient sect received the appellations both of disciples and saints in relation to the Lord Jesus: it therefore necessarily follows, that they acknowledged him their only Master, for this was one of his primary injunctions, that his disciples should acknowledge no master but himself. Matt. xxiii. 8-10. Again, addressing his disciples, he saith, "You call me Master and Lord, and ye say well, for so I am." John xiii. [18]. These, then, were his exclusive claims upon his disciples, that they should acknowledge him exclusively their immediate and only Lord and Master, or Teacher, under God the Father, who had delivered all things into his hand. And here let it be noted that it was in direct opposition to him in these his righteous claims, that the Jews cleave to Moses, as their only Teacher under God; saying to one of his followers, "You are his disciple; but we are Moses' disciples." John ix. 28.

We have found, then, the first grand distinguishing peculiarity of that ancient sect of religionists, viz. that in all matters of a religious nature; that is, all matters of faith and obedience, or whatsoever respected the conscience; they acknowledged but one Lord and Master, one divine authoritative teacher, even Christ. Wherefore, in compliance with this leading principle, we find the apostles, those prime ministers of the gospel, always addressing their disciples in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, whether they command or exhort. Moreover, in order to substantiate their claim to the discipleship it was indispensably necessary that they should not only profess to receive Christ as their only Master and Lord, but they must also abide in him by abiding in his word, and his word abiding in them. John xv. 7-10. If ye continue in my word, said he to those Jews that believed to him, ye are my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth; and the truth shall make you free. John viii. 31, 32. Under this particular we shall notice at present but one item -- one primary clause; to which all that would become his disciples must heartily submit. See Luke ix. 23. And he said to all, if any one will come after me, (that is, if any one will become my follower -- will put himself under my guidance and direction,) let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me; that is, and then follow me; for no one, as if he had said, can become my follower upon any other terms. For this see also Luke xiv. 26-33. Thus, we may rest assured (as appears from their history) did those who were afterwards called christians at Antioch, come to enjoy the distinguishing and blissful privilege of discipleship.

But before they were called christians, we find they had been also called saints; that is, according to the real import of the term, persons separated to God -- holy persons; for all persons or things that are in some peculiar or special manner -- for some peculiar or special purpose -- separated to the service of God, are, in the fixed style of the Holy Scriptures, termed sanctified or holy. Now we may clearly perceive in the foregoing items respecting the persons under consideration, that they were justly entitled to this epithet; and also upon what account they were so. They had professedly received Christ in his proper character; had manifestly complied with the terms of discipleship as above, "had purified their souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit," and thus had become sanctified through the truth, according to John xvii. 17. and were actually manifesting the truth of their discipleship by walking in love, according to John xiii. 35. "By this shall all know that you are my disciples, if ye have love one to another." Now being thus affected with the truth, they had manifestly become "a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; to shew forth the praises of God, who had called them out of darkness into his marvellous light." They were, therefore, upon the highest considerations known amongst men, properly called saints. What a beautiful gradation in the process of the divine economy towards this ancient and highly distinguished people! First called disciples, being really made such by divine teaching; that is, by the word of the truth of the gospel; next called saints, being sanctified through the truth believed; then, brethren, being united in and by the truth under one head, namely Christ; the head of the redeemed family of mankind, under his Father; for "the head of Christ is God;" "of whom (as the Great Father of All) the whole family in heaven and earth is named." Put these items together, and we shall find those favored people at length rightly called Christians, who were first by an orderly succession and concatenation of effects, the disciples, the saints, and the brethren of Christ. The propriety of this crowning epithet will appear conspicuously evident if we consider its import. "Christian" is a derivative from Christ. Now the term "Christ" signifies anointed, or the Anointed One; of course the term "Christian" naturally and necessarily signifies a partaker of the same anointing by derivation and communication, but in a lower and subordinate degree; as derivatives are also frequently diminutives, both in the ancient and modern languages. Upon this interpretation of the import and relation of the terms, let us advert to divine declarations upon this subject. John i. "We beheld his glory, the glory as of an only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth; and of his fulness have we all received, even grace for grace." "For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell." Col. ii. 19. "You have an unction from the Holy One, and know all things. The anointing which you have received of him abides in you. The same anointing teaches you all things, and is truth," &c. John ii. 20-25. Hence we see the above interpretation fully established. In this epithet we may perceive the accomplishment of ancient prophecies. "For thus says the Lord God, (speaking of Messiah's people in the aggregate, under the ancient terms of Zion and Jerusalem,) "The Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory; and thou shalt be called by a new name which the mouth of the Lord shall name." Again, in relation to this new name, speaking of the same people, in contradistinction to the unbelieving, stiff-necked, and rebellious Jews, (those obstinate adherents to Moses to the rejection of Jesus,) he says: "Behold, my servants shall eat, but ye shall be hungry; behold, my servants shall drink, but ye shall be thirsty; behold, my servants shall rejoice, but ye shall be ashamed; behold, my servants shall sing for joy of heart, but ye shall cry for sorrow of heart, and shall howl for vexation of spirit. And ye shall leave your name for a curse to my chosen; for the Lord God shall slay thee, and call his servants by another name. For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind" And, "as the new heavens and the new earth which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the Lord so shall your seed and your name remain." Isaiah lxii. 2. lxii. 13-15. 17. lxvi. 22.

How completely verified these ancient predictions, both in Messiah's people, and in the Jews that rejected him, no one, who has attentively read the New Testament as an authentic record, can be at a loss to determine. Those especially who have read Josephus' account of the final destruction of Judea and Jerusalem by the Romans, can be at no loss to perceive the awful verification of the above predictions in relation to the latter. It farther appears from the above citations, that the new name of Christian, first given to the primitive disciples at Antioch, was of divine original, and not merely by accident, or of man's devising. See Isaiah lxii. 2. as also the common use of the word "chrematisai," (called) seems to signify. This will also appear reasonable, both from the character of the subjects so called, its perpetuity and extent, and the important ends to be answered by it. Indeed all these things are recognized in the documents before us. It was to be the name, the only distinguishing name of the Messiah's people; therefore, it was meet that it should be imposed by himself -- that "the mouth of the Lord" should name it. Again, its perpetuity was to be equal to its extent; for as this important name was to cover or include the whole of Christ's people co-existing upon earth at any one time, so it was to continue to the end of time -- "so shall your seed and your name remain." Again, it was to answer the most important ends to the subjects; it was to absorb and obliterate for ever all names of partial distinction in the grand republic of religion and morals; and thus to unite to one grand religious community, without distinction, the whole human family under Christ -- we mean as many of all nations as should believe in his name. Accordingly we find this name first given to the disciples at Antioch, in Syria, shortly after the gospel had been first preached to mere Gentiles, in Cesaria, in the house of Cornelius; the immediate consequence of which, as appears, was the exhibition of the gospel to the citizens of Antioch, without distinction of Jew or Gentile; and that with great success amongst the latter. See Acts xi. 19-24. Now for the first time, a great and mixed multitude, but chiefly Gentiles, were converted in the same city, and became together disciples of the same Lord. Now was the time, the precise time, when a new and appropriate name became necessary in order to unite these hitherto dissociated and jarring characters into one associate body: a name, too, of such powerful import, as might supersede and bury forever all offensive recollection of former hateful distinctions. Now we see that it was at this critical juncture, this precise point of time, and not before, that the new name was given. Indeed, it had never been necessary before, while discipleship was confined to the Jews, and their religious proselytes only; for these were already united in the religion of Moses. See, reader, the wise and gracious management of the divine economy! and that the Lord does nothing in vain! Well might the apostle say, that, "in the exceeding riches of his grace, he has abounded towards us in all wisdom and prudence." We come now to the last of those descriptive epithets by which the sacred historian denominates the aggregate of the christians dwelling together in the same vicinity, and statedly assembling together in the same place for religious purposes, viz. the church in or at such a place; and speaking of a number of such assemblies in any country, province, or district, he calls them the churches within such limits. See Acts ix. 31. &c.

If we advert to the literal and intrinsic force or meaning of the original term which we translate church, we will find it equivalent to called or chosen out of. Now the propriety of this epithet to a society or association of such characters as we have been considering, is sufficiently manifest from the whole of the premises before us taken together. Considered as disciples, they were separated from the authoritative teaching of all others in religious matters, to the One Master; in consequence of receiving him and his doctrine, they became saints, i. e. separated to God. Thus united under one head, they became brethren; and, as such, associated for religious purposes, they became manifestly the called or chosen out of the rest of mankind, to the worshipping of God according to Christ Jesus.

Having thus briefly, and, we hope, strictly, according to the true import of the record, investigated the distinguishing peculiarities of that ancient sect, called "Christians first at Antioch," through the medium of the descriptive epithets by which they were originally denominated, let us now proceed to inquire more particularly into their religious tenets and practice, through the medium of other authentic documents concerning them, which we also find upon the sacred page.

We have already observed that their prime original epithet, was simply that of "disciples" in relation to Christ, whom they considered as the only authoritative teacher under God, to whom only they were to hearken in matters of religion, according to the voice that proceeded from the Excellent Glory at his baptism and transfiguration -- "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased -- hear you him." But, upon this, it will naturally occur, that it was the privilege of a few only of those who were afterwards called "disciples" to have been personally acquainted with Christ, and, of course, to have been under his immediate teaching, and probably none of those at Antioch who first received the christian name. How, then, did they become his disciples, in the strict and proper sense of the term, as we have scripturally understood and considered? The answer is obvious. It was in consequence of the commission given to his apostles after his resurrection, and shortly before his ascension, to "go into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature; to disciple, or make disciples of all nations," &c. We say, then, that the principle which originated their discipleship, and that of all others, from the day of Pentecost and afterwards, to the end of the world, was laid in the above commission -- can be found no where else, and must be traced up to that source.

In the first commission Christ gave to the twelve, with particular instructions to go only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel, (Matt. x. 40.) he sent them forth with this declaration, "He that receiveth you receiveth me; and he that receiveth me, receiveth him that sent me." Again, in his instructions preparatory to this last and great commission, addressing his heavenly Father in their behalf, he sath, "As thou has sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world." John xvii. 18. And addressing them, he saity, "As the Father hath sent me, even so send I you. And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost. Whosesoever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whosesoever sins ye retain, they are retained." John xx. 21-23. Thus instructed, qualified, and commissioned, they were sent forth into all the world, as the ambassadors and representatives of Jesus Christ to the nations, to disciple them in his name, with the assurance of his continual and manifest presence with them. "And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following." Mark xvi. 20. Thus it appears that they were, in the most strict and proper sense of the terms, the representatives of Jesus Christ to the world -- even as he was of the Father. He identifies them with himself, even as he identifies himself with the Father. And as he, the Great Apostle of the Father, received from him the Holy Spirit, with power also to acquit, or hold guilty, according to the tenor of his commission to a guilty and rebellious world; so he likewise imparts the same powers and privileges to his apostles. See the above citations. With the strictest propriety, may all who received them in character, and; through faith in their testimony concerning Jesus, became obedient to their doctrine, be called the disciples of Christ: for they preached not themselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and whatsoever they did, taught, or commanded in the accomplishment of their commission, it was all in the name of the Lord Jesus.

But it farther appears, from the history of this ancient sect, that the disciples at Antioch, who first received the christian name, did not receive the gospel immediately from the apostles. See Acts xi. 19-24. Nevertheless, they received it, as all did, who, from the commencement of the gospel dispensation, that is, from the day of Pentecost, believed in Jesus, and were baptized into his name. We mean, they received the gospel in consequence of the apostolic commission; upon the execution of which the apostles were fully instructed and authorized to enter on the day of Pentecost, but not before. Compare Luke xxiv. 46-49. with Acts i. 4-8. and the second chapter throughout. We say, then, that all who received the gospel from that day to this, received it by means of the execution of this commission, which actually commenced on the day of Pentecost, by the preaching of repentance and remission of sins, in the name of Jesus, to all nations; a sample of which was, that very day, providentially assembled at Jerusalem. Some of all these, it appears, gladly received the word, were baptized, and afterwards, upon the persecution that arose about Stephen, being scattered abroad, went everywhere preaching the word. And some of them were men of Cyprus and Cyrene, who, when they were come to Antioch, spake to the Grecians, preaching the Lord Jesus. And the hand of the Lord was with them: and a great number believed and turned to the Lord. Acts viii. 1. 4. with xith. 19-21. Thus the Antiochians received the gospel, not immediately from the twelve, but from persons whom they had discipled. But these also had the promised presence, for "the hand of the Lord was with them;" which plainly shews that the commission was so limited as to confine the whole work of evangelizing, or discipling the nations, to the twelve or thirteen primary apostles, (adding Paul to the number;) but was intended to include all who, receiving those in character and believing their testimony, were thus qualified and disposed, by the grace of Christ, to co-operate for accomplishing the grand object of the commission; and these also it appears were made partakers of miraculous powers, (see Mark xvi. 17. 18. with Acts viii. 5. 6.) some of one kind, and some of another; but none of them were equal to the apostles; for they, as the complete and immediate representatives and plenipotentiaries of Jesus Christ, possessed, in the most eminent degree, all the powers he had received of the Father, as the great Preacher and Apostle of God. He had power on earth to forgive sins -- so had they. He had power to communicate the Spirit to empower others to work miracles -- so had they. He had power to work all kinds of miracles himself -- so had they, &c. &c. &c. And all who, after them, received the Spirit, received it through their ministry, either mediately or immediately. Hence they are enthroned heads, judges, and lawgivers to the christian church; and, in this sense, the founders or foundation of it, next to Christ himself; for they also labored, suffered, and died for its sake: but in all things he must have the pre-eminence, who purchased the church with his own blood. In short, Christ had so completely identified the apostles with himself, that whosoever received them, received him; that whosoever persecuted them, persecuted him; and that whosoever kept their sayings, kept his also; for the words they spake were not theirs, but the words of him that sent them. Hence, even in the most difficult circumstances, they were not to premeditate what to say; for, upon every emergency, it should be given them immediately what they ought to say. These things being so, it necessarily follows that whosoever received the word which they preached, upon the confirmatory evidence which the Lord by them exhibited, received Christ and his word; submitted to him, and were taught by him, and so became, to all intents and purposes, his real and genuine disciples, (whoever the immediate preachers might be,) and were therefore justly entitled to the new name of Christian. And here let it be strictly noted, that all who were divinely called to co-operate with the apostles, in the first instance, under their commission for evangelizing and discipling the nations, were also indued with a portion of their spirit, enabling them to speak the necessary languages, and to work miracles for the confirmation of the word. See the above quotations, with 1. Cor. 12th and 14th chapters.

Having thus briefly substantiated the claims of the Antiochian converts to the discipleship of Jesus, and of all others who received the word as they did, not immediately from the lips of the apostles, but from some of those whom they had discipled, or that had heard and believed their word -- we come now, in the last place, to investigate more particularly the religious principles and practice of those primitive disciples; and this we shall attempt through the medium of the commission itself, and of those authentic documents which we have on record respecting its execution. For this purpose we shall advert to the items of the commission in their natural and proper order. To proceed, then, we find it prefaced thus: "And Jesus came and spake unto them, (the eleven,) saying, All power (that is, all authority,) is given unto me in heaven and in earth; go you, therefore," &c. Here we perceive that the commission is predicated upon the unlimited authority of Jesus. "Go you into all the world, preach the gospel to every creature," or disciple all nations, "baptizing them (the discipled) in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit; teaching them (the discipled) to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And, lo! I am with you always, unto the end of the world." Matt. xxviii. 18-20. with Mark xvi. 15. 16.

Here, then, in the first place, it is evident that whosoever believed what the apostles were commissioned and commanded to preach throughout all the world, to every creature, (that is "the gospel,") and were baptized as above, the same were discipled, that is were made disciples of Jesus, and became thereby entitled to the promised salvation.

In the second place, it is equally evident that the discipled were to be farther instructed; namely, to observe, that is, to keep in mind and reduce to practice the "all things" that Christ had commanded, or should command his apostles to teach the disciples. Farther (with respect to the duties either of apostles or disciples) the commission saith not. Consequently the religious principles of the disciples were principles of faith and obedience; to believe the gospel which the apostles preached, and to reduce to practice what they enjoined in the name of Jesus, completed the character of a disciple. So much we evidently learn from the commission itself: for farther particulars we must have recourse to the execution of it; that is, to its actual accomplishment in the preaching and teaching of the apostles. In this part of the investigation two important points respecting christianity necessarily come to be determined, viz. What is the Gospel, and what the Law of Christ? The belief of the former, constituting the faith; and the obedience of the latter, the duty of the christian. "For the christian is not without law to God, but is under law to Christ."

It has been already observed that the preaching of the apostles under this last and great commission, the object of which was the evangelizing of the world, commenced on the day of Pentecost. On that memorable day repentance and remission of sins began to be published in the name of Jesus, to all nations, at Jerusalem, viz. that whosoever believed in him and was baptized into his name, should receive the remission of his sins, and the gift of the Holy Spirit." See Acts ii. 22-39. In the course of this sermon Jesus of Nazareth is proclaimed as "a man approved by God -- by miracles, and wonders, and signs, which God did by him:" that, "being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God -- he was taken and by wicked hands crucified and slain" -- that God raised him from the dead -- that he exalted him to his right hand -- that "having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit," he had poured forth upon his apostles and the other disciples assembled with them, the wonderful things which were then apparent: in a word, that he had made that same Jesus, which they had crucified, both Lord and Christ. As many as appeared convinced of the truth of this testimony, were exhorted to repent; that is, to be of another mind; to cease from their opposition; and be baptized into his name, in order to the remission of their sins. The result was, as many as believed the things thus testified concerning Jesus, gladly embraced the invitation, and were baptized, and so became his disciples, and were added to the hundred and twenty; and the Lord continued to add to their number daily such as should be saved. The effect of the next sermon (recorded Acts iii.) is the addition of five thousand. In the viiith we are informed that the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly, and that a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith; that is, became baptized professors of the truth which the apostles testified concerning Jesus; for all the obedience the gospel calls for, in order to salvation, is, that men believe it, upon the evidence which God has afforded, and so be baptized. "He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved." We have only yet advanced to our inquiry from the beginning of the 2d to the 8th verse of the sixth of the Acts, and we find ourselves introduced to a great multitude of disciples, the great majority of whom afford the most striking evidence of entire devotedness to the truth, and of its most blissful effects: they afford, we say, the most convincing marks of genuine discipleship. Are these not christians? Are they not justly entitled to this new and distinguishing name? Are we not justifiable in considering them as a sufficient sample or specimen of christian character. We certainly think we are. If not, we despair of finding their superiors upon record. If ever the gospel was purely preached, they did it. If any thing believed amongst men could produce supernatural and heavenly effects, sure they were in possession of it. We speak of the mother church, the church of Jerusalem, which at this time was exceedingly numerous -- full of benevolence, of hospitality, of brotherly kindness, and charity. Let us then pause here a little, and review with all possible attention the history of those wonderful people that we may distinctly apprehend what was preached and believed amongst them that produced such wonderful effects.

It was preached that Jesus of Nazareth, with the fame of whose character they were well acquainted, as "a man approved by God by the miracles, and wonders, and signs which God did by him," was the great prophet predicted by Moses. That he was the Messiah, the Son of God, whom they had wickedly crucified; that God had raise him from the dead; that he had exalted and glorified him at his right hand, a Prince, and a Saviour, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins; that the Father had constituted him Lord of all; had conferred upon him the promise of the Holy Spirit, that he might send him down upon his disciples; that he must reign until all his enemies be made his footstool; that heaven must be his residence till the times of the restitution of all things; they also preached through Jesus the resurrection, and, of course, the final judgment; and that there is no other name under heaven, given among men, whereby we must be saved; that whosoever believed in him and was baptized, should receive remission of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit. These various items, taken in connexion with the proper arguments, will be found to be the amount of the apostles' preaching concerning Jesus, in the portion under consideration, down to the 8th verse of the 6th chapter. And, indeed, the whole of their preaching, in as far as we have any specimens upon record, is concerning Jesus. And if we should add all that is found in the Acts of the Apostles to the above items, it would scarcely add a new idea. Thus we find the apostles preached, and thus the primitive disciples believed. How simple! how comprehensive their faith!

As to their practice, they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine, and in the fellowship, and in the breaking of bread, and in the prayers. Thus they manifested the stedfastness and reality of their faith, by their cheerful and persevering obedience. But were we, in the mean time, to condescend to all the particulars relative to their practice, according to the injunction in the second item of the commission, it would lead us to transcribe the greater part of the epistles afterwards addressed to the churches. This, however, we shall not attempt. But, taking for granted, what all must grant, namely, that they were obedient in all things, to the commands and exhortations of the apostles, with the exception of some incidental irregularities, which, upon being reproved, were speedily corrected, we may justly view their character through the medium of those epistles, placing to their account all the commendations, with the obedience of all the commands and exhortations contained in them. This being granted, we have before us on the sacred page the most precise view of the religious principles and practice, or of the faith and obedience of the primitive christians. For whatsoever the apostles preached concerning Jesus and the blessings to be enjoyed through him, or concerning the punishment by him to be inflicted upon the unbelieving and disobedient, constituted their faith, in contradistinction to all others, whether Jews or Gentiles. In like manner, whatsoever the apostles taught them, in the name of Jesus, to observe and do, constituted their obedience. And here let it be carefully noted once for all, that faith and obedience comprehend the whole of christianity; and that, upon the premises before us, we have a distinct and complete view of the gospel and law of Christ, the belief and obedience of which constituted the religion of the primitive christians. These things being so, we can be at no loss, with the New Testament in our hands, to attain to the pure, original, uncorrupted religion of Jesus; if we only attend to it, and place all our religion in the belief of what the apostles have declared concerning him; and, in the obedience of what they have enjoined in his name, as therein recorded. We think it, therefore, needless to be more particular, as it is by no means our intention to transcribe the New Testament; but only to exhibit the leading and comprehensive outlines of the religious character of that ancient and famous sect, called "Christians first at Antioch." We shall therefore conclude with a review of the characteristic outlines of the picture which we have drawn.

In the first place, then, considering this ancient sect in the light of the descriptive epithets by which they were originally distinguished before they received the appellation of "christians," we found they were at first called "the disciples" in relation to Jesus of Nazareth, on account of their exclusive adherence to him as their only master or teacher in all matters of religion and morality: next, that they were also called "the saints," and "thy saints" in relation to Jesus as separated to him, and sanctified by the belief of his word: afterwards, that they were called "brethren," as united by those bonds under one head into one family; the aggregate, or assemblage of which, in one place, was called "the church," that is, the assembly of the called or chosen out of the common mass of mankind, in that place. And lastly, upon the union of Jews and Gentiles into one associate body, which appears to have taken place first in Antioch, they received the new, appropriate, and distinguishing name of "christians," as partakers with Christ in that divine unction wherewith he was anointed; the great Prophet, High Priest, and King of his church: by a participation of which they also became a royal priesthood, being thereby made kings and priests unto God. This, then, was that new and royal name by which the Lord was graciously pleased to designate and distinguish his people.

In order to a more full developement of the religious principles and practice of this distinguished people, we had recourse to the apostolic commission, the execution of which gave birth and being to christianity, being persuaded that whatever these were, they were such in consequence of the accomplishment of this commission. In this part of our investigation we found the apostles authorized and instructed to preach the gospel throughout the world, to every creature; to baptize the believers of it; and afterwards to teach them to observe all the commandments of the Lord Jesus, with the gracious promise of his presence to be with them continually in so doing; that, therefore, to believe the gospel which the apostles preached, and to reduce to practice what they commanded in the name of Jesus, completed the character of a disciple; faith and obedience being all that was contemplated and required in the commission: consequently, that the religious principles of the disciples were principles of faith and obedience.

In order to determine more particularly the subject matter of their faith and obedience, or what they believed and practised, we had recourse to the authentic record of the apostles' preaching and teaching from the beginning of the 2d to the 8th verse of the 6th chapter of the Acts of the Apostles. Upon the whole, without resuming particulars here, we found that the entire subject of their preaching was Jesus Christ, and him crucified; and that the whole of their teaching was brotherly kindness and charity, with a stedfast and persevering attention to the ordinances; viz. to the fellowship, to the breaking of the bread or of the loaf, and to the prayers. See the original, Acts ii. 42. For the continual observance of all which, it appears they were pre-eminent. Hence we clearly perceive what they believed and practised; namely, that the subject matter of their faith was the gospel, or every thing the apostles preached concerning Jesus -- and of their practice, every thing the apostles commanded them to do in obedience to his authority. Neither more nor less than this was required in the commission, nor exhibited in the execution of it, as to faith and obedience. As to farther particulars respecting the moral and religious practice and conduct of those primitive saints, we think we have justly placed to their account the observance of all the practical injunctions contained in the epistles to the churches. Reader, if you would contemplate them in the beauty of a full drawn character, extract from the Holy Scriptures whatever is clearly asserted concerning Jesus, and place the sum total to the account of their faith: -- next proceed in the same manner, from the commencement of the gospel dispensation, (Acts ii.) to the end of the book, and place to the account of their obedience every injunction moral and religious, you can collect; and you will have a compete picture of a genuine and approved disciple. "If ye continue in my word," said Jesus to those Jews that believed on him, "then are ye my disciples indeed." John viii. 31. And when you have done this, see that you realize the same faith, upon the same evidence, and that you reduce to practice the same injunctions, in obedience to the same authority: so shall you also be a disciple indeed; suppose you had never seen a religious book but the Old and New Testament and, in so doing, you will not lose your labor.

Lastly, for the detection of error, please to contrast this full drawn picture of pure primitive Christianity with its present exhibition in the world; and you will see how vast the difference, both in principle and practice. In the former, the gospel preached by the apostles, and believed, was the faith: their commands, directions, and exhortations, delivered in the name of the Lord Jesus, was the law. The belief of the former, confessed in and by baptism, constituted a disciple, and entitled the person to the enjoyment of the remission of his sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit; the grand, comprehensive, and essential principles of salvation. The obedience of the latter evinced the reality of his discipleship, recommended him to the esteem of his brethren, kept him in the love of God, and in the enjoyment of that peace which passes all understanding but of him that hath it; nourished up and ripened his soul for a blissful and glorious immortality. Here all was evident, certain, and satisfactory; founded upon a divine testimony, divinely attested; God himself, by signs and wonders, and divers miracles and gifts of the Holy Spirit, bearing witness to the truth and certainty of every item of the faith and obedience inculcated. Here was nothing of human authority -- nothing of the opinions or inventions of men. No contested propositions to be first proved by human reasonings, and then to be believed or practised by the disciples who acknowledged apostolic authority. But how is it now! Surely the very reverse. Alas! when will it be so again? Never, surely, until the professors of christianity return to the original standard of christianity -- the New Testament; and until they be persuaded, with the primitive disciples, to place the whole of christianity in believing what the apostles preached and taught concerning Jesus, and in obeying what they enjoined upon disciples individually and collectively -- that is, upon individuals and churches.

Note 1: The entire text for this issue is available on-line at the "Restoration Movement Pages" web-site.

Note 2: Compare the theme, phraseology and the the Greek pseudonym exhibited in the above communication with the letter of "Philotheos" is the May 1, 1824 issue of the heterodox Philadelphia religious newspaper, The Reformer. The the editors of the Christian Baptist (Alexander Campbell) and The Reformer (Theophilus R. Gates) did not share exactly the same religious views, but the two men exchanged papers and occasionally one reprinted items from the other's columns. The above, very lengthy Campbellite sermonette was definitely not penned by Theophilus R. Gates. Nor, despite some similarities, was the communication likely written by the unnamed "Philotheos" whose letter had appeared in Gates' Reformer a few months earlier. The 1824 "Philotheos" exhibits an extreme degree of anti-clericalism and millenarianism which even radical Campbellites (like Sidney Rigdon) did not generally espouse at so early a date. The Reformer's "Philotheos" sent his letters from Uninion Village (a.k.a Turtle Creek), Warren Co., Ohio -- the spiritual heartland for both western Shakerism and the Stoneite "New Light" movement. He was likely a disgruntled former New-lighter, unhappy with Rev. Stone's evolution away from pentacostal millenarianism and towards Campbellite rationalism.

Note 3: The Christian Baptist's mysterious correspondent, "Theophilus," was probably not Sidney Rigdon: see note attached to the second article by this anonymous writer, in the Jan. 3, 1825 issue. However, the religious opinions expressed by "Theophilus" appear to have been consistent with those presumably held by Rigdon during this early period. The Campbellites of the 1820s were not strict trinitarians, in the sense of ascribing to the "Holy Spirit" the position of a third person in the Christian Godhead. The writer of the above letter may have felt some affinity with the "Christians" of ancient Antioch, and with their noted bishop, Theophilus. However, that same Theophilus, Bishop of Antioch, was a staunch professor of the 3-in-1 Godhead, and he seems to have been the one who originated the theological term "trinity." He would probably have taken a dim view of Sidney Rigdon's later "Mormon" views -- that the Holy Spirit was something other than a person, and was something more like a power or presence which emanated from the modalistic "Father and Son." Note the correspondent's chosen example to this effect: "he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost."


Vol. II.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., January 3, 1825.                               No. 6.



The following essay towards the proper use of the Holy Scriptures, is respectfully submitted to the readers of the Christian Baptist, by their humble servant in the truth,

"All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished to all good works." 2 Tim.iii. 16, 17.

This is one of the many encomiums passed upon the sacred writings, which we meet with in the perusal of them; and a comprehensive one it is. It embraces the whole of the sacred canon, though it appears principally intended of the Old Testament Scriptures. (See the preceding context.) Nevertheless, as all that we call Holy Scripture is equally "given by inspiration of God," the above commendation will hold equally good of it all. It also appears to have been given for the same blissful end, viz. "to perfect the man of God." We find the appellation "Man of God" first given to Moses, afterwards to Samuel and David, and to many of the Old Testament prophets. It is also once given to Timothy, (1 Epis. vi. 11,) who is the only person to whom it is applied to the New Testament; in which it occurs but twice. In the place before us it is not restricted to Timothy, or any other, either personally or officially considered, but appears to designate the object of divine teaching -- the student of the Holy Scriptures, that is, "the man taught by God" by the perusal and study of his word. In this sense we here take it. This we are sure is the end of the divine goodness in relation to all to whom it is sent. It is thus the Holy Scriptures stand recommended as "able to make us wise to salvation, through faith which is in Christ Jesus."

The grand subject of inquiry is, Are the scriptures, in and of themselves, independent of all external helps, able to do this? The answer to this important question, together with their proper use, is the precise object of this essay; and we hope to make it evident to all concerned, to know the truth, that the Holy Scriptures do, in and of themselves, independent of all external helps, possess a real intrinsic sufficiency to make the diligent student of them "wise to salvation," "thoroughly furnished to all good works?'

To prevent mistakes, let it be clearly understood, that, by the independent and intrinsic sufficiency of the Holy Scriptures, we do not mean such a sufficiency as would, in the first instance, obviate the necessity of proper teaching. Teaching, in general, is indispensably necessary to mankind for every valuable purpose. We came into this world entirely and equally ignorant of every thing; therefore, we can know nothing without teaching, of some, kind or other. The child is first taught by experience that fire will burn; that a knife will cut, &c. and every particular art and science, how plain and rational soever, must be learned before we can know or practise it. Of course, language, which is the vocal and written medium of communication, or something equivalent to it, must be learned before we can communicate our ideas to each other. Again, the language of a particular science, with its proper object, must be acquired before we can become proficients in it. It is just so with the Holy Scriptures. It is not only necessary that we understand to speak and read our native language in general, through the medium of common teaching, for the common purposes of life; but if we would understand the Scriptures, we must be taught the Scriptures; not merely to read them as a common book, but as a book of divine revelation, given for a certain purpose -- having terms and phrases peculiar to itself. Being thus properly introduced to the knowledge of the book, our attention called to its authority, its authenticity, its distinct and diversified subjects with their proper objects, its ultimate end, or the grand intention of the whole work, we are qualified to make the proper use of it, as a book written for our learning, in as far as teaching is concerned; we mean the teaching of the schools, or that preparatory teaching, to which every youth bred in a christian country is in justice entitled. This it appears was Timothy's privilege, as being descended of Jewish parents, so that "from a child he had known the Holy Scriptures," (of the Old Testament at least.) This he had of his grandmother Lois, and of his mother Eunice, according to the injunction, Deut. vi. 6-9. To the Jews the Old Testament presented itself immediately as the authentic record of the origin of their nation, and of all things; of their religion and laws, &c. of the singular interpositions of God in their favor. It was, therefore, to them a most interesting book, plain and intelligible: it needed no comment nor explanation. Written originally in their own language, it appears to have been, at least for a long time, their only book. To them, therefore, it always presented itself in the proper point of view in which it was to be considered. The series of events in the order of the narrative, from the beginning of Genesis to the end of, Deuteronomy, was the natural and proper order in which the serious and attentive mind was to consider and contemplate the various things thus presented in succession. This book was also to be publicly read, at the appointed seasons, in the great solemnities of the nation. But we hear of no explanations, either allowed or attempted, for upwards of a thousand years, even to the days of Nehemiah, when explanation, in some measure, became necessary, the people having lost the purity of their native language during the seventy years captivity of the nation. There was, then, neither explanation nor comment upon the Jewish Scriptures for upwards of a thousand years; and what was done by Ezra and his companions at the time referred to, was merely accidental, owing to the reason already assigned. But are the Scriptures presented to us in the same natural, easy, and obvious light? Are we taught to consider them, as a plain and simple narrative of facts, divinely authenticated, namely, as a genuine and faithful record of what God did, and taught, and caused to be recorded by Moses and the prophets, by Christ and his apostles, for the instruction and salvation of mankind? And as such are we taught to consider the book, as it now presents itself to us, consisting of two grand and distinctive divisions, called the Old and New Testaments; the former as having for its immediate object the instruction of the Israelitish nation, or (according to modern style) of the Jews, containing the doctrine, laws and institutes of their religion and government; the latter as having for its immediate object the instruction and salvation of mankind, by the knowledge, belief and obedience of the Son of God -- containing the doctrines, laws, and institutes of the christian religion? Are the successive generations of those called christians, we say, thus introduced to an acquaintance with the Holy Scriptures as they now appear amongst us in their complete and finished form? Are we thus successively taught to consider and understand them? Far otherwise. But ought we not? Who will say that we ought not? We fear there are very many; yea, a great majority among those that are called christians. Do not many forbid the common popular use of the Scriptures? They say it is a dangerous book in the hands of the common people -- only fit for the learned--for the clergy. Do not others again, who differ from these, materially concur with them in the depreciation of the Holy Scriptures, considering them as a dead letter, as a sealed book, as scarcely intelligible; in short, as of no use except to the clergy, or, at least, to the regenerate; whereas the most precious, important, and mysterious portions of those Holy Writings were, by a divine command, published to an ignorant and ungodly world. (See Matt. xxviii. 19, 20. Mark xvi. 15, 16; with 1 Tim. iii. 16. &c. &c.) These poor, ignorant, deluded people, certainly do not know that God has prepared and ordained his word to be the only means of salvation amongst men, and, of course, the exclusive means of regeneration. Compare James i. 18, 1 Peter i. 23-25, with the above citations. But do not the clergy of all denominations concur with the opinions under immediate consideration, else why attempt to expound or explain every portion without exception? Why pretend to the necessity of a classical education to understand the Scriptures; or, in lieu thereof, to a kind of secondary inspiration?

But after all these pretensions, (to the manifest defamation of the Holy Scriptures,) may we not inquire what hurt can result from the sayings and doings of God, or of man, recorded in the Holy Scriptures? Are the teachings and example of Jesus Christ and his apostles calculated to do injury? Again, is it not evident that the Scriptures, both of the Old and New Testaments, were, in the first instance, delivered to mixed multitudes of all descriptions; or, when Moses and the prophets, Christ and his apostles, addressed Jews and Gentiles in the words that are recorded, did they carry about with them learned interpreters to explain their sayings to the people? or did they ever suggest the need of such helps? How, then, has it come to pass, as at this day, that there is such an innumerable host of scripture interpreters, and such a universal acknowledgment of the almost indispensable necessity of such. The answer is obvious -- the people are bewitched as formerly; (Gal. iii. 1. &c.) for from the beginning it was not so, as we have already seen. That a kind of teaching, peculiarly adapted to the subject, is necessary, at least to beginners, in order to a right understanding of the scriptures, has been granted. We might add that such a kind of teaching has become necessary, not only to beginners, but almost to every body in this dark and deluded age. The kind of teaching which we mean, however, is not the clerical teaching of our day. It aims at no more than a just analysis of the subject in order to the end proposed; namely, that the diligent student may be made "wise to salvation, thoroughly furnished to all good works;" for this intrinsic sufficiency the apostle asserts is in the Holy Scriptures, connecting the Old Testament with the New, as he manifestly does in the place alluded to, by adding, "through faith which is in Christ Jesus."

First, then, as to the analysis, let the student be duly informed concerning the character and design of this singular book; that it is a book of a sacred character, claiming God for its author, and having for its professed object or design the present and everlasting happiness of mankind; that it rests its claims upon the singularity of its contents, which are of such a nature, and so authenticated, that none but the God which it reveals could be the author of them. That it is the proper business of the student to advert both to its import and evidence, that he may clearly perceive both its meaning and authority; that the instructions it is designed to convey, in order to its professed object, resolve themselves into the following comprehensive and important particulars, viz. the knowledge of the divine character; of the original and present character and condition of mankind in the sight of God; of the divine procedure towards mankind in their present guilt and wretched condition, for their effectual relief and deliverance; of their present duties and privileges; and of the future and everlasting destinies of the whole human race. That, for the attainment of those necessary and important points of information, the scriptures furnish us with historical records of the doings and sayings both of God and men; by a due attention to which, we may learn the characters of both. -- And here it should be observed, that there is no other way known to us, by which we may acquire the knowledge of any character, human or divine, but by words and deeds. Hence the necessity of a strict and studious attention to every item of the sacred records, in order to a particular and enlarged acquaintance with the character both of God and man -- both of saint and sinner. Hence also the necessity of such faithful and authentic records. Moreover, the scriptures furnish us with prophetic declarations of things not seen as yet, by which we may learn the future destinies of mankind: -- by others, that have been fulfilled, we have a certain proof of their divine original. They also furnish us with commands and examples, promises and threatenings, exhortations and dissuasives, religious ordinances and exercises, for our moral and religious instruction; that we may be happy in ourselves, enjoy social happiness one with another, and be ultimately happy in the complete and everlasting enjoyment of the favor and fellowship of God. Lastly, they present themselves to us under two grand divisions, called the Old and New Testaments; the former of which had for its proper and immediate object the instruction of the Israelitish nation; and contains the institutes of their religion and government; the latter has for its proper and immediate object the discipling of all nations, and the instructing of the discipled how they ought to walk, so as to please God, both in respect of religion and morals. -- Hence the Old Testament contains a complete exhibition of the Jewish religion -- and the New Testament, that of the Christian.

With these, or similar instructions, let a correct translation of the Holy Scriptures be put into the hands of the rising generation successively, from age to age; and those who are able to read and understand correctly their native language, will be at no material loss for farther explanation. As for those that are so deficient that they cannot read and understand their native language, let the public and private reading of the scriptures, with frequent recurrence to the above analysis, supply the deficiency. If such a use of the Holy Scriptures, in connexion with the other appointed exercises of religion, public and private, does not answer the purpose of religious edification, we have reason to fear that nothing human wisdom can devise will have the desire effect.

It may here be objected, "If the scriptures be so completely adapted to answer the gracious and blissful end for which they were given, independent of all explanation or comment, they must, of course, be exceedingly plain; and if so, what need of any preparatory instructions -- of any peculiar teaching, or introductory analysis to direct our studies, or to prevent mistakes? Would it not be sufficient to put the book itself into our hands, at a proper period, in the ordinary course of our reading, without any kind of preface or introduction?"

To this we may justly rely, that, to convey the book in this manner, from hand to hand, from age to age, from one generation to another, would be next to impossible. Men are not accustomed to act so tacitly, and with such apparent indifference in things of high esteem -- of great and acknowledged importance. Something, therefore, must and will be said; yea, in justice ought to be said, in relation to so invaluable a privilege. You will say, then, "Let it be called the Book of God -- the Book of Life -- the Holy Scriptures, or Sacred Records of the Old and New Covenants, Constitutions, or Dispensations; or by any other suitable and appropriate name: and, as such, be exhibited, read, and considered, without more ado." Granted; and what then? Will nothing more be said about it? Impossible. It must be read over, talked over, believed, obeyed, sung and prayed over; it must, therefore, necessarily be analysed. The mind will necessarily make distinctions in it; and, of course, snake distinct uses of it, according to the variety of matter it presents to our consideration. The grand desideratum is, that the distinctions be just and natural; and that the proper, immediate, and ultimate design of every portion of it, be duly understood and realized. A just and correct analysis, such as has been attempted above, would, we presume, be of considerable advantage to the young student, especially for those important purposes. That the attentive and discerning mind, however, if unbiassed with erroneous system, would ultimately come to a right understanding of the Holy Scriptures, independent of all preparatory instructions, is cheerfully granted; but it might not be until after a long time and many mistakes. As, therefore, much good and no hurt is likely to ensue from the plan proposed; as it casts no manner of reflection upon the Holy Scriptures, on account of obscurity; or in any wise prejudges the free and independent use of the students intellect; and, at the same time, gives proper scope for the performance of a grateful and important duty: we think there can be no just objection brought against it. At all events, it appears the only kind of human teaching that is necessary to render the word plain and profitable to every one that feels disposed to profit by it; while, at the same time, it does not pretend to explain it, but merely to direct the attention of the reader to the various subjects and objects it presents to his consideration, that he may be led to distinguish and make the proper use of them.

It may be farther objected, that, to introduce tire reading of the Holy Scriptures through the medium of such analysis, might be made subservient to sectarian views, and, of course, have a tendency to bias the mind of the student in favor of a particular sect. To this we may justly reply, that simple analysis, which is all we plead for, can have no tendency whatever to bias the mind of the student, in any department of science. What biassing tendency can be produced by acquainting him with the name and intention of his author, and by furnishing him with an index of the contents or arguments which the author exhibits in order to accomplish his object? To do merely so much as this, to excite the attention of the learner, and prepare his mind for forming a discreet and satisfactory judgment of the true import, relevancy, and tendency of the several items or arguments towards establishing a certain conclusion; so far from biassing his judgment in any respect, rather serves to put him upon his guard against mistake and deception. It can have no tendency, even in the first instance, to prejudice him in favor of the work. In short, it is doing him all the justice imaginable, in every respect. In putting a valuable work into his hand, it is calling him to the proper use of his talents, and at the same time rendering him all the just and necessary assistance that can be, in order to his reading it with profit, without so much as prejudicing him in its favor; that, by adverting to the import and evidence of every part, he may come to a just conclusion upon the whole. Had mankind been thus introduced to the bible at a proper age, without any farther comment, ever since christianity was established, and the sacred canon completed by the ministry of the apostles, we may fairly presume that things would have presented a very different aspect in the christian world. We should not have had so much mere educational faith, so many human traditions, such variety of sects, and so many shameful apostacies.

It will, perhaps, still be objected, that upon this plan of proceeding, the children of Christians would have continued mere nondescripts, till after they had become of age -- were well educated -- had studied the scriptures -- and formed a discreet and rational judgment upon the whole subject. In a word, till they became rational believers. To this we reply, with all firmness, without a moment's hesitation, it would then be soon enough; soon enough to assume a religious character, when rationally convinced of the truth and authenticity of the holy scriptures; of the true character of God; of the real character and condition of man; of the gracious procedure of God towards fallen man, for his effectual relief and deliverance; of his present duties and privileges, and future hopes. The profession of religion without a scriptural knowledge and certainty, we mean, a divine certainty of these things, is indeed but little worth. It is a mere forced production; a premature assumption. It brings to mind the common adage about mamma's pet; "a man at twelve, and a child all his days." This is too often the case with those premature professors. But at what age might such a proficiency in scriptural knowledge be rationally attained? We presume, that, under the proper means, it might be as early, as professions are commonly made; say, from the age of twelve to fifteen. It is no very uncommon thing, to find youths of this age good mathematicians; yea, many tolerably good linguists. So far, then, as a competent proficiency in divine knowledge, depends on age, there appears no forbidding consideration, if the proper means be used. Timothy, "from a child, had known the holy scriptures." There is a proper course of divine or scriptural teaching adapted to every age, from the first dawnings of rationality. It is the province of every christian parent to judge of the capacity of his child, and to adapt his instructions accordingly. But there is a time, it may be about the age of ten, or shortly after, when the dutiful and intelligent christian parent may and ought to address his child to this effect. "My child, you have always seen me worship God both in my family and in the church. You have had the advantage of a religious education so far under my example and direction. The time is now come when you must begin to understand, to think, and act for yourself. I, and the church in which you have always seen me worship, have concurred in teaching you to read and understand the language of the holy scriptures. These are the sources of our religious belief and practice. These you must now begin to read and study for yourself. We believe them to be the word of God -- we call them by that name. But this is not a sufficient reason that you should consider them to be so, unless you are convinced by the proper authority; that is, the authority of God himself, who affords the proper evidence to those that seek it. This evidence is the word itself. Search the scriptures, and you will find it there. If not there, it is no where to be found. Therefore, if you would find it, you must search the scriptures; you must read and study them with the greatest attention. They claim to be the word of God, and we consider them as such, because they make him known. God is known by his word and by his works, or by his sayings and doings: now the scriptures are professedly a record of both. By the names and attributes, the sayings and doings, they ascribe to him, we become acquainted with him; that is, we learn his character. And the very existence of such a record, is to us itself, a demonstrable evidence of the truth of it. But you must gradually and progressively acquaint yourself with those things, and thus form your own judgment. You will perceive, the bible divides itself into two grand divisions; the former called the Old Testament, immediately addressed to the Jews, containing the institutes of their religion and government: the latter, called the New Testament, addressed to all nations, containing the history and gospel of Jesus Christ, and the institutes of the christian religion. It is with the latter that we, as christians, have immediately to do. Its declarations concerning Christ, and the salvation that is by him, constitute our faith; and the injunctions inculcated by his apostles upon individual believers, and upon the churches composed of such, constitute the rule of our duty. So we understand the scriptures, and so we have received them: but for the divine authenticity of the whole, and the propriety of our so understanding them, you must judge for yourself by a careful and studious perusal, that you may come to know the truth upon its proper evidence; having this gracious promise upon record from the glorious and benevolent Author, that "they that seek him early shall find him." With such an address, and under the influence of such preparatory instructions, were the rising generation amongst professors of christianity seasonably introduced to the study of the holy scriptures, what happy consequences might be expected. How much more rational and scriptural such a procedure, than training them up in the dogmas of any party. Having first qualified them to read and understand the language of the scriptures, thus to commit and recommend to them the Word of God, as the means of their farther instruction, could certainly be productive of no bad consequences. Whereas, the neglect of this, or the contrary course, which is almost universally pursued, has a tendency to make sectarians, bigots, or enthusiasts, instead of rational, intelligent christians. For want of such a just and rational introduction to the scriptures, when a youth, what a loss of precious time and privilege has the writer of this essay experienced; though early introduced both to the reading and memorising of the sacred records! He remembers, with regret, the many years of his life spent in the possession of the bible, without knowing the proper use and inestimable value of it. He was early taught, indeed, to consider it as the Word of God -- as the alone head and source of all religious knowledge; but without any distinct view of that religious knowledge it was designed to communicate, -- wherein it consisted, -- or how it was to be ascertained: whether directly and immediately from the declarations of the book itself, or from the expositions and comments of men upon it: -- what was the particular use and design of its distinct parts, and the ultimate object of the whole, in relation to religious attainment. In a word, whether he was to learn his religion directly and immediately from Moses and the prophets, or from Christ and his apostles: -- whether he was to worship in the style and spirit of the ancient Jews, or of the believing Gentiles; or whether he was to join issue with both, and combine -- the two religions into one, with some external and ritual distinctions: and how far such distinctions ought to be carried he was at a loss to conjecture, having no certain instructions how to determine. Like an unskilful traveller, who, accidentally introduced into a strange and highly improved country, though every where presented with beautiful and interesting objects, yet, for want of an intelligent guide to direct his attention, knows not how to avail himself of them; so was the writer of this, and, as far as he knew, so were all his acquaintances, in relation to the various, beautiful, and highly interesting objects presented to view on the sacred page. He knew not, for the most part, what to make of them; -- could form no consistent apprehension of their scope and import; or what that religion was they were designed to inculcate. He recollects that himself, for a time, with others of his acquaintance, took the bare reading of the scriptures to be religion; -- at other times, the performance of what are called religious duties, -- such as fasting and prayer, and attending to social worship, &c. again, the holding of a certain system of religious opinions, supposed to be drawn from, and proved by, the scriptures. This last mistake, (for such the writer conceives it to be,) led into a vast field of controversy, of contention, and vain jangling; for great is the diversity of human opinions in religious matters; and high and positive are the claims and pretensions of the respective sectaries, whether ancient or modern. It was not, however, till after the better part of his life was spent in those mistakes, that he came to discern the peculiar character, scope, and import of the holy scriptures, and wherein that real religion consists, which they are designed to communicate; namely, that it consists in that knowledge of God and man; or of the divine and human character, which the holy scriptures throughout, taken from beginning to end, as a complete whole, distinctly and luminously inculcate; and which terminates practically in the faith and obedience of the gospel, blessing the mind with peace and comfort in God, through the mediation of Jesus Christ, and replenishing it with holy and virtuous dispositions both towards God and man. This religion manifests itself in a confessed and stedfast belief of all divine declarations, and in a manifest and persevering obedience to all divine ordinances and injunctions, according to the just and obvious import of the words and phrases in which they are delivered; which belief and obedience rests simply and solely upon the authority of God Thus receiving and understanding the holy scriptures as a perfect and intelligible rule of faith and obedience, independent of all human interposition, the writer has, at length, found himself quite at home, under the immediate teaching of the GREAT TEACHER HIMSELF, and of his holy apostles and prophets. Thus brought home, and reconciled both to God and man, upon gospel principles, through the knowledge of the scriptures, after many wanderings, and the loss of much precious time and privilege, merely, as appears, for want of a proper and suitable introduction at first to the consideration of that sacred book, (for the writer, was, to the best of his recollection, as religiously disposed forty years ago as he is at present,) he would, if possible, and as far as possible, prevent the same pernicious and unhappy consequences from accruing to others. This he begs leave to assure his readers is his sole motive for calling their attention to this important subject.

Note: From the above essay, it would appear that "Theophilus" was more than "forty years" of age at the end of 1824. If this was the case, the writer could not have been Sidney Rigdon -- who was born in 1793.


Vol. II.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., February 7, 1825.                               No. 7.


NO. I.

For the information of those of limited reading, we design to give a few historical facts respecting the progress of the English bible. The importance and utility of these historical notices will be apparent as we proceed.

It is a remarkable coincidence in the history of all the noted reformers from Popery, that they all gave a translation of the Scriptures in the vernacular tongue of the people whom they labored to reform. There are other striking coincidences in the history of these men which may hereafter be noticed. John Wickliffe, who was born 1324, and died 1384, was the first reformer that disturbed the peace and unity of the church of Rome, and he was the first man that translated the New Testament into the English language. One of the errors which the popular clergy of that day laid to his charge, was, that he taught -- that the New Testament is a perfect rule of life and manners, and OUGHT TO BE READ BY THE PEOPLE. He also taught that there were but two officers in the christian church, viz. the bishops and the deacons. "That christians must practise and teach only the laws of Christ." His disciples were called Lollards. Wickliffe's Testament was in manuscript circulated amongst the laity and read with great avidity. But the reading of this blessed volume was attended with great danger, for in the beginning of Henry Vth's reign a law was passed, which enacted -- "That whosoever they were, that should read the scriptures in the mother tongue, (which was then called reproachfully Wicleu's Learning,) they should forfeite lande, catel, lif, and godes, from theyre heyres for ever, and so be condempned for heretykes to God, enemies to the crowne, and moste errant traitors to the lande." So great was the rage of the clergy against reading the New Testament in English, when it first made its appearance. Every one who read it was suspected of heresy, and many were suspected of having read it, against whom it could not be proved, because they were a little more intelligent than their neighbors. For the reading of this volume will soon make a layman more intelligent than a priest who only uses it as a text book. John Keyser became so intelligent as to say, that although the Archbishop of Canterbury had excommunicated him, "he was not excommunicated before God, for his corn yielded as well as his neighbors." This much light was however dangerous to this man, for he was committed to jail for knowing and saying this much. This happened in the reign of Edward VI.

John Wickliffe made his translation, A. D. 1367, not from the Greek but from the vulgate New Testament as read in the Catholic church. This vulgate which was read for many centuries, was a correction of the old Italic version, conjectured to have been made in the middle of the second century, not long after the first Syriac version was made. The old Italic was made from the Greek and Old Testament from the Septuagint. Jerome, A. D. 382, translated the Old Testament into Latin from the Septuagint, or rather corrected from the old Italic version. The Italic version, mended by Jerome, has been long in great repute amongst the Romanists, and is what is commonly called the Vulgate, from which Wickliffe gave the first English New Testament.



By various notices we have received from our friends in Kentucky, it appears that the ecclesiastical affairs of that state, as well as the political, are in a preternatural stib? of effervescence. The ever restless and aspiring spirit of the priesthood of Scotland is again rising in the greatness of its strength in pursuit of new adventures. The few Presbyterian clergy in that state give more trouble to the public than all the other religious denominations in the state. Though few, very few in number, they must reign, or try to reign, as the high priests of the land. They seek the high places; and are detemined to make the others bow down to them. One of the doctors in Lexington had his name razed to the foundation from the subscription list of the Monitor, a first-rate political paper, because the "Third Epistle of Peter" made its appearance in it. That Epistle speaking to the conscience of the divine with so much cogency, gave him so much inward trouble, that, in a paroxism of mental perturbation, he done his best to starve to death, or to put down the Editor, who was the cause of its reaching the eyes of the doctor. What a catastrophe to the Editor of the Monitor, had all his subscribers been Doctors of Divinity! It is well for him that Lexington cherished but one...

The same clergy are, I am told, at this time in solemn conclave projecting ways and means how to defeat the efforts I have been making to get the christians in the dispersion in that state, to read, and study, and practise the New Testament.... The efforts made while I was in the state, by the Lexington clergy, was to publish an extract from Lawrence Greatrake's defamatory pamphlet, before

I reached the town, to prevent the good people of that vicinity from coming to hear and judge for themselves; which, however had a contrary, effect, -- as indeed they were baffled in every attempt of the kind. Next to this the Presbyterian doctor, who dislikes the Third Epistle of Peter, endeavored to counteract the influence of my public exhortations, by telling his hearers that I was a bad man, and he could prove it. I called upon his reverence and requested an explanation. He then said he meant an erroneous man -- not a bad man; that is, not immoral. He moreover had the goodness to tell me that he pitied me -- I returned the compliment by pitying him, and after a few ceremonies and compliments we bade adieu, The editor of the Luminary also published some threats of what they are going to do with me; but as yet they have attempted nothing that has seen the light....


Lawrence Greatrake's Calumnies Repell'd,

A PAMPHLET of 60 pages, duodecimo, has been issued from this press, within a few days, titled as above, price 12½ cents. Those copies sent by mail, will have, if over 100 miles, to pay 5 cents postage. We have sent some copies of this work to some of our agents -- more can be forwarded to those already furnished with a few, and also some will be sent to those yet unfurnished, if required. This pamphlet is printed of the same size as the Christian Baptist, that it may be bound in the same volume with it. As it is a sort of comment on the clerical system, and as it throws some light upon the spirit of the priesthood, fully exhibited in one individual, we would advise all who read the Christian Baptist to put themselves in possession of a copy of it.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. II.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., March 7, 1825.                               No. 8.



Anno Domini 1526 the New Testament was translated into English by Tyndal. This translation was printed at Antwerp. It had an astonishing circulation, amongst the people. The bishops of the English hierarchy condemned it. They not onlycondemned it as a dangerous book for the laity, but COmplaned of it to the king, and proceeded against those that read it with great severity. His majesty, Henry VIII called it in by way of proclamation, June, 15[30], and promised a more correct translation. But says Neal, "it was impossible to stop the curiosity of the people so long, for though the bishops bought up and burnt all they could meet with, the Testament was reprinted abroad and sent over to merchants in London, who dispersed the copies privately among their acquaintance[s] and friends." "At length it was moved in convocation that the whole Bible should be translated into English and set up in churches; but most of the old clergy were against it. They said this would lay the foundation for immmerable heresies, as it had done in Germany, and that the people mere not proper judges of the sense of scriptures. To which it was replied that the scriptures were written at first in the vulgar tongue; that our Saviour comanded his hearers to search the scriptures, that It was necessary the people could do so now. These arguments prevailed with the majority to consent that the petition should be presented to the king, that his majesty would please to give order about it. But the old bishops were too much disinclined to move in it. The Reformers, therefore, were forced to have recourse to Tyndal's translation."

Two remarkable facts in the history of the first translators of the scriptures are worthy of particular notice. The first is that all who attained to the honor of first reformers attempted to give a translation of the scriptures in the vulgar tongue of the people they labored to reform. Peter Waldus, A.D. 1160, attempted a translation of the four Gospels into the French language. John Wickliffe, A.D. 1367, translated the New Testament into English, Martin Luther gave a translation of the Bible into German. Olivetan translated into the French, and Beza, the friend and companion of Calvin, rendered the New Testament into Latin. The second fact is, that the reigning clergy uniformly opposed these translations under the pretext of their inaccuracy, and their dangerous tendency amongst the laity.

But to return to the English Bible, it is a fact worthy of some attention, that Wickliffe, who gave the first translation, was condemned as a heretic, and after his death, the orthodox dug up his bones and burned them. William Tyndal, too, who gave the second Engfish translation, was condemned to death and executed as a heretic.

William Tyndal’s New Testament was printed in one octavo volume, without a name, without any marginal references, or table at the end. In the year 1536 it had passed through five editions in Holland. Tyndal also made a good progress in translating the Old Testament The five books of Moses, the books of Joshua, Judges, Ruth, the two books of Samuel, the Kings and Chronicles, with Nehemiah and Jonas, were translated by him. Miles Coverdale and John Rogers finished it. Some marginal notes were added which gave offence to theclergy and the whole work was prohibited by authority, Tyndal translated, as Wickliffe before him, from the Vulgate Latin, and not from the Greek. Archbishop Cranmer reviewed and

corrected it, leaving out the notes and prologue, cancelled the name of Tyndal, and gave it the fictitious name of Thomas Matthews' Bible. It was sometiems called Cranmer's Bible, though in fact it was still Tyndal’s transation corrected. The Archbishop's name and influence obtained the royal authority. and it was read by all sorts of people.


Among the commandments of the humble and glorious founder of the christian faith, the follwing is most conspicious: "When thou doest thine alms do not sound a trumpet before thee as the hypocrites do" -- "Let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth." It seems the hypocrites in those days gave alms as well as the sincere, but they published their almsgivings. They had their reward in the admiration and commendation of men. some of the modern ambassadors of Christ, in and about Lexington, understand this precept differently, and therefore obey the spirit, but not the letter of it

The Rev J. Brackenridge, one of ihe editors of the Luminary that enlightens the West, tells his readers of many extraordinary cases of almsgiving, amongst which the following are worthy of admiration. "The Rev. J. B. gave (to some poor and needy Indian missionaries) one suit of wearing apparel and two heifers." It appears he understands the precept thus, When thou doest ttine alms exhibi! the initials of thy name, and prefix Rev. to it; but do not make a noise with a trumpet. Let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth; but let the people read it whithersoever thou canst publish it." But he tells us his brother, the Rev. N. Hall, "gave one cow and a parcel of clothes," And, stranger still, “the Rev. J. M'Farland gave one large English cow!" The editors of two other papers, and one of them in New York, are requested, in the same Luminary of the 19th January, to publish those alms. We have volunteered our services freely that those good christians in Lexington may have their reward.

The Rev. J. B. in the Luminary of the 26th January, says he he believes that “Alexander Campbell is an enemy to the truth as it is in Jesus." He also informs his readers that he respectS the feelings, character, and general views of Elder Greatrake." So does his brother the Pittsurgh Recorder,"and one ruling elder in Virginia. We send this genileman, per mail, a copy of “Lawerence Greatrake’s Calumnies Repelled," that he may respect his feelings, character, particular views, and prayers, still more. We shall make an experiment upon his feelings and sense of justice, and regard to that truth of which he believes me an enemy. If I must be considered an enemy to that truth because I cannot think that the precept which literally forbids a man's publishng his alms, means he ought to do it, and to beg others to do it, I must be pitied and cannot help being contemned.

It is, however, a defect of my understanding, and for this I deserve sympathy. By the way of a bonus, to obtain an insertion of his calumnies, Lawrence Greatrake concluded his letter to the editors of the "Luminary" with these words, "Farewell -- we meet ere long on high." I cannot offer so high a bonus for the insertion of a few extracts from my "Calumnies Repell'd" -- I demand it as a right; but will not, because I cannot, return any thanks for the performance of a duty, which that trith (of which I am believed by the Rev. J. B. to be an enemy) enjoins upon all who profess to regard it, and a duty which all its friends will require no solicitations to perform.

Note 1: William H. Whitsitt offers this commentary on the above "History of the Bible" article: "During the month of March 1825, when Campbell had already become inflated with the idea that he was a Reformer, it occurred to his mind that it would be seemly for him to follow the fashion of other great Reformers in respect to the business of translating the Scriptures.... In order that he might stand with honor in the ranks of these men he shortly afterwards sent forth a translation of the New Testament, but as his own "erudition" was not equal to the task, he was content with the ridiculous spectacle of republishing the translations which George Campbell of Edinburgh, and Doddridge and Macknight had made of separate portions of the book which were merely combined by himself into one whole."

Note 2: Whitsitt continues his interesting train of thought thusly: "Immediately after the date when Rigdon had publicly signified his adhesion to the Mormon movement, he too aspired like his old Master to stand in the ranks of the mighty Reformers, and it was one of the earliest cares of his new estate to produce a translation of the Bible. In company with Joseph Smith he submitted himself with the liveliest devotion to the task, which in due course of time and struggle was completed, but the work was not published in full until a period of years had elapsed. No Reformer could afford to pass away without leaving a legacy of this sort for the benefit of mankind."

Note 3: So far as history has thus far admitted, the Rigdon-Smith version of the English Bible was commenced prior to Sidney Rigdon's conversion to Mormonism, and at a considerable distance from his residence in Ohio. However, upon his first meeting with Joseph Smith, Jr., at Waterloo, New York near the end of December, 1830, Rigdon threw himself into the tedious labor of continuing for Smith the "new translation" of the old scriptures. What, if any, connection Rigdon had with the project prior to that time remains unknown. It seems unlikely, though, that Rigdon and Smith intended their odd production to go forth "for the benefit of mankind." More likely they intended the book to be read only among the Mormons, as a mandatory replacement for the King James Version, the text of which did not fully suit their prophtic purposes.


Vol. II.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., July 4, 1825.                               No. 12.

[p. 280 - orig. ed.]

Preachers and Rulers of Congregations.


One of the best proofs that a prophecy is what it purports to be, is its exact fulfilment -- If this rule be adopted in relation to the Third Epistle of Peter, there can be no doubt that it was written in the true spirit of prophecy. We thought it worthy of being preserved, and have therefore given it a place in this work. -- Ed.

[p. 281 - orig. ed.]

P R E F A C E.

How the following Epistle came to be overlooked by the early Saints of Christendom, and by all the Fathers, or whether it was purposely suppressed by the Council of Nice, and why it was at last destined to be found with other old manuscripts among the ruins of an ancient City, by a miserable wandering Monk, are all circumstances which my limited knowledge of these subjects does not enable me to explain. I am answerable only for the accuracy of the translation from a French copy presented by the Monk himself. Neither can I prove the authenticity of the original, unless it be on the strict correspondence of the actual state of the Church with the injunctions contained in the Epistle, a correspondence which seems to hold with as much veracity as that which is found in the fulfilment of any Prophecy with the prediction itself.


The Style and Manner of Living.

Now ye who are called and chosen to go forth to all nations and among all people, in time present and time to come, to preach the word, see you take unto yourselves marks, nay many outward marks, whereby you shall be known of men.

Be ye not called as men are called, but be ye called POPE, ARCHBISHOP, ARCHDEACON, or DIVINE, or REVEREND, and RIGHT REVEREND, or some like holy name; so may you show forth your honor and your calling.

And let your dwelling places be houses of splendour and edifices of cost; and let your doors be decked with plates of brass, and let your names, even your reverend titles be graven thereon; so shall it be as a sign.

Let your garments in which you minister be garments not as the garments of men, neither let them be "seamless garments woven throughout;" but let them be robes of richest silk and robes of fine linen, of curious device, and of costly workmanship; and have ye robes of black, and robes of white, that ye may change the one for the other, so shall ye show forth your wisdom and humility.

Let your fare be sumptuous, not plain and frugal as the fare of the husbandman who tilleth the ground; but live ye on the fat of the land, taking "good heed for the morrow, and wherewithal you shall be fed."

And drink ye of the vines of the vintage brought from afar, and wines of great price; then shall the light of your spirits be the light of your countenances, and your faces shall be bright, even as the morning sun shall your faces glow in brightness; thus shall ye show forth your moderation and your temperance in all things.

[p. 282 - orig. ed.]
Let the houses in which you preach be called Churches; and let them be built in manner of great ornament without, ,and adorned with much cost within; with rich pillars and paints; and with fine altars and pedestals, and urns of precious stones; and cloths and velvet of scarlet, and vessels of silver.

And let there be rooms for the changing of robes, and places for the precious metals and mitres.

And let the houses be divided into seats for the congregation, and let every man know his own seat; and let the first seats in front of the altar be for the rich, that pay by thousands; and the next for the poorer, that pay by hundreds; and the last for those that pay by tens. And let the poor man sit behind the door.

And let the seats be garnished with cushions and crimson cloth, and with fine velvet; for if the houses of players and vain people who deal in idle sayings and shows of mockery, be rich and gorgeous, how much more so should be the houses that are dedicated to him "that is meek and lowly of spirit."


The Choosing of Ministers.

When ye go out to choose holy ones to be of your brethren, and to minister at the altar, choose ye from among the youth, even those whose judgments are not yet ripe, and whose hearts know not yet whether they incline to God or Mammon.

But ye are wise, and you shall know the inclining of their future spirits, and ye shall make them incline to the good things which the Church has in store for them that are called; even those that shall be called by you.

Then shall ye have them taught exceeding many things: they shall not be as "ignorant fishermen," or husbandman, or men speaking one tongue; and serving God only by the knowledge of his Law.

Nay, ye shall make them wise in the things of your wisdom, yea, exceedingly cunning in many mysteries, even the MYSTERIES which you teach.

Then shall they be fitted for the "laying on of hands," and when the Bishop has done his office then shall they be Reverend Divines.

But if any man believe that he is called by God to speak to his brethren "without money and without price;" though his soul be bowed to the will of the Father, and though he work all righteousness; and "speak as with the tongue of an Angel:" if he be not made a Divine by your rulers and by the hands of a Bishop, then is he not a Divine, nor shall he preach.

He that is chosen by you shall give you honor, and shall be honored by men, and honored of women; and verily he expects his reward.

[p. 283 - orig. ed.]

The Performance of Preaching.

When ye go to the Church to preach, go not go by the retired way where go those that would shun the crowd, but go in the highway where go the multitude; and see that ye have on the robes of black, and take heed that your pace be measured well, and that your march be stately.

Then shall your "hearts be lifted up," even as the hearts of mighty men shall they be lifted up. And ye shall be gazed upon by the multitude, and they shall honor you; and the men shall praise you, and the women shall glorify you; even by the women shall ye be glorified.

And when you go in, go not as the inordained, prepared only with a soul to God and with a heart to men, and a spirit filled with the Holy Ghost; but go ye with your pockets full of papers and full of Divine words; even in your pockets shall your Divinity be.

And let your Sermon be full of "the enticing words of man's wisdom," and let it be beautified with just divisions, with tropes and with metaphors, and with hyperbole, and apostrophe, and with interrogation, and with acclamation, and with syllogisms, and with sophisms, and throughout let declamation be.

And take good heed to your attitudes and your gestures; knowing when to bend, and when to erect; when to lift your right hand, and when your left; and let your motions be graceful; even in your attitudes and in your gestures let your grace be. Thus shall ye be pleasing in the eyes of the people and graceful in their sight.

Let your voice, at times, be smooth as the stream of the valley; and soft as the breeze that waves not the bough on its bank; and at times let it swell like the wave of the ocean, or like the whirlwind on the mountain top.

Then shall ye charm the ears of your hearers and their hearts shall be softened, and their minds shall be astounded; and their souls shall incline to you; and the men shall incline to you, and likewise the women; yea, unto your sayings and unto your persons shall they be inclined.

And be ye mindful not to offend the people; rebuke ye not their sins; but when you rebuke sin, rebuke it at a distance; and let no man apply your sayings to his own case; so shall he not be offended.

If a brother shall raise up the banner of war against brother, and Christians against Christians, rebuke them not; but be some of you on the one side and some on the other; and tell the one host that God is on their side, and the other host that he is on their side; so make them bold to kill. And even among swords and lances, let your black robes be seen.

Preach ye not "peace on earth and good will to men," but preach ye glory to the victor, and victory to the brave.

If any man go into a foreign land and seize upon his fellow man,

[p. 284 - orig. ed.]
and put irons on his feet, and irons on his hands, and bring him across the great deep into bondage; nay, if he tear asunder the dearest ties of nature, the tenderest leagues of the human heart; if he tear the wife from the husband, and force the struggling infant from its mother's bleeding breast, rebuke him not!

And although he sell them in foreign slavery, to toil beneath the lash all their days; tell him not that his doings are of antichrist; for lo, he is rich and giveth unto the Church, and is esteemed Pious, so shall ye not offend him, lest peradventure he withdraw himself from your flock.

Teach them to believe that you have the care of their souls, and that the saving mysteries are for your explaining; and when you explain your mysteries encompass them round about with words, as with a bright veil, so bright that through it no man can see.

And lo, ye shall bind the judgments of men, (and more especially of women,) as with a band of iron: and ye shall make them blind in the midst of light; even as the owl is blind in the noon day sun. And behold ye shall lead them captive to your Reverend wills.


The Clergy's Reward.

"In all your gettings, get" Money; now, therefore, when you go forth on your ministerial journey, go where there are silver and gold, and where each man will pay according to his measure. For verily I say, ye must get your reward.

Go ye not forth as those that have been sent, "without two coats, without gold or silver, or brass in their purses; without scrip for their journey, or shoes, or staves," but go ye forth in the good things of this world.

And when ye shall hear of a Church that is vacant and has no one to preach therein, then be that a CALL unto you, and be ye mindful of the call, and take ye charge of the flock thereof, and of the fleece thereof, even of the golden fleece.

And when ye shall have fleeced your flock, and shall know of another CALL , and if the flock be greater, or (rather) if the fleece be greater, then greater be also to you the CALL . Then shall ye leave your old flock, and of the new flock shall ye take the charge.

Those who have "freely received" let them "freely give," and let not men have your words "without money nor without price," but bargain ye for hundreds and bargain for thousands, even for thousands of silver and gold shall ye bargain.

And over and above the price for which ye have sold your service, take ye also Gifts, and be ye mindful to refuse none, saying, -- "Lo! I have enough!" -- but receive gifts from them that go in chariots, and from them that feed flocks, and from them that earn their morsel by the sweat of their brow.

[p. 285 - orig. ed.]
Yea, take ye gifts of all, and take them in gold and in silver, and in bread; in wine and in oil; in raiment and in fine linen.

And the more that the people give you the more will they honor you; for they shall believe that "in giving to you they are giving to the Lord;" for behold their sight shall be taken from them, and they shall be blind as bats, and "shall know not what they do."

And ye shall wax richer and richer, and grow greater and greater, and ye shall be lifted up in your own sight, and exalted in the eyes of the multitude; and "lucre" shall be no longer "filthy" in your sight. And verily ye have your reward.

In doing these things ye shall never fail, and may abundance of gold and silver and bank-notes, and corn, and wool, and flax, and spirits, and wine, and land be multiplied unto you, both now, and forever. Amen!

[p. 288 - orig. ed.]
SEVERAL Baptist congregations in the western part of Pennsylvania, and in the state of Ohio, have voted the Philadelphia confession of faith out of doors, as not worthy of a place among them. They are determined on being free to be guided by that old fashioned book, that exhibits the faith once delivered to the saints, in the order and connexion best adapted to mankind, as appeared to the Founder of the religion.  Ed.

AT a meeting of sundry teachers of the Christian religion and brethren from different sections of the country, held in Warren, Trumbull county, Ohio, on the last day of May and first of June, at which the editor was present, the greater part of two days was occupied in discussing the ancient order of things. A great desire was expressed by most of those present to see the ancient order of things restored, and the discussion was free, candid, and general. Many topics were introduced subservient to the grand topic of investigation, and from the zeal and harmony that was apparent in this investigation it is to be hoped that those congregations of disciples who have begun in the spirit will not end in the flesh, but that the ancient order of things will soon be exhibited in the practice of the disciples meeting on the first day of the week.  Ed.

Note 1: The above "3rd Peter" text was probably the journalistic handicraft of the Campbellite Pittsburgh "Bishops," Sidney Rigdon and Walter Scott. See Scott's 1824 pamphlet for its original publication. A similar satirical, anti-clerical text was sold as a pamphlet in Philadelphia (probably by Quakers), about this time, under a slightly different title.

Note 2: On the consequences of Baptist congregations discarding or ignoring the Philadelphia Confession of Faith during this period, see Campbell's issues for Nov. 1825 and Oct. 1826


Vol. III.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., November 7, 1825.                               No. 4.

[p. 91 - orig. ed.]


Mr. Editor -- Please to publish the following for the use of the Baptists at large, that they may be brought to see the necessity of a stedfast adherence to the original standard of Christianity, to the rejection of every competitor.

Dear Brethren -- Our text is taken from the Redstone Minutes for 1824, 6th article, which reads as follows -- "INFORMALITY." -- The text is short, but contains weighty matter and great confusion, inasmuch as it has served not only to perplex the saints of the Most High God, but also to destroy the validity of the sacred scripture. My dear brethren, think it not strange when I say that I have been at about 40 associations in England, Wales, and different parts of this union, (which many will acknowledge who read this when they see my name,) and that, putting them all together, the confusion at Redstone exceeded all I ever witnessed -- and all about this informality. O, what a mighty word! and well handled by the worthy right reverend Divines, Wm. Brownfield and Lawrence Greatrake, they being filled with zeal, not for the scripture nor for the cause of Christ contained therein, but for the Philadelphia Confession of Faith, the word or opinion of men. But to come to the word of my text, let it be observed that I was appointed by the Stillwater Association, in 1825, a messenger to the Redstone; and when brother Wheeler of Washington read the minutes of the aforesaid association, the Rev. gentleman, Mr. Brownfield, got up and offered his objections to the messenger, as being of doubtful character, and therefore could not have a seat with them. I immediately requested an explanation of the same by a specification of charges; to which he replied, in the first place, that he had heard that I had denied the Confession of Faith. To which I answered that I did, having an utter abhorrence
[p. 92 - orig. ed.]
to all human creeds and confessions of faith, and giving some reasons for the same. The next and last charge was, that I baptized Ephraim Smith in the bounds of the Flat Run Church, without bringing him before the church. Now for a full reply to this latter, I say that he was wrong informed, for I baptized brother Smith and wife, not in the bounds of the Flat Run Church, but five miles beyond the residence of her members, the nearest being Deacon Berry, at whose house they were received into the church; so that in this Mr. Brownfield is mistaken. And now, Mr. Brownfield, as you are a learned man, and one that is able to inform the ignorant, I shall propose the following questions, hoping that you will answer them for the information of the ignorant Baptists, that must have an explanation of the scripture from such men, yea, from such orthodox preachers as you and Mr. Greatrake are: -- 1st. Is the Confession of faith a sufficient rule, without the scripture, for the Baptists -- if not, why contend for half rules? 2d. What deficiency is there in the sacred scripture that makes a creed necessary? 3d. What part of the scripture is there that points out the necessity of an explanation by confessions of faith? 4th. What confessions of faith, out of the many in the world, are the most orthodox, seeing they are all the production of the learned? 5th. Why should the Baptist Confession of Faith be more holy, more evangelical than the Westminster, its mother, or the Popish Manual, its grandmother? 6th. Have not these confessions of faith, with their advocates, the ascendancy over the scripture? 7th. Have not these confessions and human creeds been more for the support of carnal systems, of wars, divisions, and bloodshed, than the purity of the religion of Jesus Christ? 8th. Where do you find in scripture many things contained in the Philadelphia Confession of Faith, viz. elect infants; the eternal generation of the Son of God; and God foreordaining whatsoever comes to pass, without being the author of sin? Many other questions may be proposed on this head, but I keep them for a future period, requesting you to answer them through the same medium, and by so doing you will not only oblige me, but be instrumental in converting thousands of the Baptist brethren to a belief in human creeds and confessions, who are now so ignorant as to believe in the word of God only!

But the second charge against my person is on the subject of baptism, which you thought proper to bring against me, though the church did not; neither did they think that there was a SUPREME HEAD or vicar of the church to do so; namely Mr. Brownfield. But trusting that I may have liberty to approach, without kissing your TOE, I will propose some more questions on that topic: -- 1st. Has a regular ordained minister of the gospel a right to baptize any where, and every where that he may be called to labor, provided the candidate gives him satisfaction? 2d. Before what church did Philip bring the eunuch, and the many baptized in Samaria, with the many that Paul baptized? 3d. And where is your scripture for the minister to bring the candidates to the church before baptism? 4th. Why did you attempt to censure me for this practice, adding to it a misrepresentation, (viz. "in the bounds of the church"?) Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in Ashdod! So now, my dear
[p. 93 - orig. ed.]
brethren, I have got over the first part of my text (informality) as it respects myself, and shall dwell on the same as it respects others. But before I can attempt to give you a full detail of the matter, it will be necessary to inform you that there is one article in their constitution like this, that all churches forming that body shall, in their letters, acknowledge their belief in the doctrine contained in the Philadelphia Confession of Faith, so far as it agrees with the scripture. Query. How are we to know its agreement with the scripture, but from the scripture? and if the scripture is necessary to prove the accuracy of the Confession of Faith, then why not serve as a standard of the same? It must be granted that we must be wiser than the Confession of Faith can possibly make us, yea, wiser than the compositors themselves, before we are possibly able to judge of its correctness. Now, when we bring into view these truths, undeniable facts, we must lament the manifest weakness of its warmest advocates in the Redstone Association. Is it for want of talent? No; but a zeal for a system; to the wounding of God’s children, destroying their peace, taking away the key of knowledge, the scripture, and attempting to put the mark of the beast in the hand, even confessions of faith and human creeds!

But to resume the subject. When the letters were read, those of them that did not refer to the above Confession of Faith, even those in which the faith of the respective churches was fully, particularly, and clearly stated, Mr. Greatrake, as busy as a bee in summer, and with the zeal of an inquisitor, rises stately from his seat, and says, "Mark that letter for informality;" while those who acknowledged the Confession of Faith passed the all-scrutinizing eye of the reverend inquisitor. O, brethren, does not this put you in mind of old times, when it was death to be guided by the word of God, yes, and the most tormenting death, to renounce human creeds. Human creeds have ever served as grindstones to grind swords and lancets on, and as firebrands to burn the bodies of God’s people. Yes, and the same spirit yet prevails in their advocates to the present day. For a proof of this, I will give you some of the ringleaders' language: Mr. Greatrake, in his preaching the introductory sermon, said, "Before we would give up this (the Confession of Faith) I would rather see this roof come down and kill this audience and myself." Mark the expression! Pause awhile! Is this persuading men? Indeed, I may say, the whole of his discourse, two hours long, was a series of vehement invective, and insinuating declamation against the advocates for the all sufficiency and alone sufficiency of the holy scripture for the edification and preservation of the church. But again, in his deliberative style, in the time of the warm contention in the association, says he, "Rather than we would give up this point, we would suffer every drop of our blood to be spilled." ("Order!" says the Moderator.) Yes, order! For shame! Is this the religion of that God of peace, of order, and of love? Was the religion of Jesus established on earth for the spilling of blood?" No, blessed Jesus, thy religion is all love, forbearance, long suffering; as the angel said, "On earth peace -- good will amongst men." But where does this spirit spring from? From the carnal heart, from the old man of sin, the author of the Inquisition.
[p. 94 - orig. ed.]
Gracious Lord, are these the propagators of thy word? Are these the men who prove their calling and election sure? Are they such as adorn thy cause? Or are they not blind leaders of the blind? From such, good Lord, deliver us, until it shall seem thee fit to change them and to give them a love to thy word. Take not thy "restraining grace from them," but give them that "faith which works by love and purifies the heart," that they may see that thy word is sufficient for the government of thy church below, and be made, with thy saints, earnestly to contend for the faith delivered to them in thy word. And now we come to the application of our text, "informality." When I first joined the Baptists, it was merely for the sake of my text. Perceiving that too many, yea, almost the whole world, were worshipers of the great goddess Formality, even that image, which, they say, came down from heaven, by means of the divine authority of the clergy, in the shape of creeds and confessions, for the preservation of orthodoxy; or, in the language of other times, for the preservation of uniformity: and perceiving, at the same time, a respectable body of dissenters, called Baptists, who conscienciously refused to worship this image which the clergy had every where set up; I felt constrained, by the force of the divine testimony against all such persecuting inventions and innovations, to join the Baptists for the sake of that very informality, which, to my utter surprize and astonishment, I found assumed in the Redstone Association as the watchword and signal of clerical persecution.Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of Askelon, lest the daughters of Babylon rejoice; lest the uncircumcised triumph.

But, O my brethren of the various associations I have met with, especially you of Baltimore, will you not be astonished when you hear that Lawrence Greatrake is the zealous abbettor and strenuous advocate of this clerical persecution, that I witnessed in the Redstone Association, in confederacy with the above named Wm. Brownfield, the alleged author of it -- even the same L. G. that you took so much notice of in my presence, and in his absence in May, 1823. Yes, the very same, who also, with all the subtlety of malicious insinuations, of defamation, and evil surmising, attempted the ruin of C--'s reputation. May God, in the greatness of his mercy, grant him repentance, and bring him to enjoy that religion in heart, which he seems so much to boast of with his tongue; and that, instead of contending for the mark and authority of the beast, he may contend for the all-sufficiency and alone sufficiency of the Holy Scripture, the plain and authentic record of the faith once delivered to the saints; to the utter rejection of all human creeds, those unauthorized productions, which have given rise to all the horrid cruelties which men professing Christianity have excited, and have inflicted upon their professing brethren for conscience sake -- and leave these unhallowed means, these inventions of men, these anti-Christian devices, to those that cannot support their systems without them; namely, infant sprinklers, and let us go to the law and to the testimony, and renounce the hidden things of dishonesty, and attend to the word of the Great Head of the church. But once more, before I conclude this subject, I must bring forward
[p. 95 - orig. ed.]
Mr. Brownfield’s arguments offered on behalf of this monstrous evil, this horn of Popery, this mark of the Beast, namely, the Confession of Faith, which were as follows, as near as my memory serves. -- "Shall we throw aside what so many great, good, and learned men have bestowed so much trouble to compile? I say, no; for if we give up this, we have no standard of regulation -- beside treating those good men with contempt." I shall mention another circumstance or expression of his colleague, (Mr. G.) made in my presence, and in that of brother Wheeler and others, "that the scripture was not the standard of the church, any more than an old stump, but it was the meaning of the scripture." Good God! is there a Baptist in the world thus filled with popery! Yes, there are some that relish the Confession of Faith more than the scripture! I have an exhibition of the same sentiments in my house at this time, written by Mr. Galitzen, a Catholic priest, of Cambria county, Pa. against Mr. Johnson, a Presbyterian minister, of Huntingdon, in the aforesaid state; the latter contending for the sacred scripture as being the alone standard for the gospel church; when the former says that the scripture is no standard; but pleads the infallibility of the church. So now we have Mr. Greatrake’s meaning -- his sentiments in full -- he has been converted to a Popish belief -- not the word, but the meaning. But from whence comes this meaning? Not from the laity -- they are an unthinking, ignorant set of mortals; nor even from the modern clergy themselves, that is, our present ones; but from our holy fathers in England, that were pleased, about 200 years ago, to take from the scripture the marrow or meaning, leaving nothing but bones, or words without meaning, for those that cannot acknowledge their infallibility. Poor Baptists! ignorant lay brethren! you need not look to the clergy now -- go to the Philadelphia Confession of Faith, and see the opinion of our former brethren, I say, go to your confessions of faith, and believe all they say. Do not judge for yourselves, but put your trust in man; for it is better now to obey man than God. And if you have not this precious treasure, this pearl of great price, sell your Bibles to buy one, for you must have it and believe it before you can have admission into an Association called Redstone. Yes, furnish yourselves with this most holy and instructive book, and it will save study and time to gather your sentiments from that old-fashioned book, the Scripture. And now a word to you, Mr. Editor: -- Had you not better give up the notion of publishing the New Testament, and turn your attention to Confessions of Faith, that the world may enjoy this new light? But do not expect my interest or exertion for the sale of them, but send on your proposals to Messrs. B. and G. I have no doubt but their interest and influence will be great for the sale of these. And now I publish to the world, to all whom it may concern; yea, to the Redstone Association, and its supreme head, Mr. B. and his vicegerent, Mr. G. and all others, that I renounce all confessions and human creeds, whether Popish or Protestant, believing them all to be one piece of priestcraft and imposition, and abide by the New Testament as my only immediate rule of faith and practice. And now, my Baptist brethren, these are my sentiments. And you, Confession of Faith Christians, I want no seat with you,
[p. 96 - orig. ed.]
until I have that lenity to covet a seat with the Popish beast. These are my sentiments as a Baptist, and the sentiments of all Baptists I ever knew, before I happened to go to Redstone; and even there, I am happy to say, I found a few contrary to what I believe to be the universal sentiment of Baptists; say about six divines, besides whom I found many worthy brethren -- Philips, Spears, Estep, Luce, Deacon, Wheeler, &c. &c. (The latter’s sermon has been read by the several churches I attend, with approbation, and by many others.) These I found in the faith of the scriptures. So now I conclude with my love to all, praying that God may bring my Popish brethren to see the error of their ways; that ceasing to contend for human inventions, they may steadfastly adhere to the New Testament, that authentic record of the faith once delivered to the saints; and that the union which has been broken by attempting to obtrude an unauthorized standard upon the churches, may be happily restored -- are the prayers of one of a suspicious character by Mr. Brownfield, but not by the Baptists.
                  Pastor of the Baptist Church, in Cadiz, Ohio.



During a late revival at Camillus, New York, a man who had heen sprinkled in his infancy wished to he baptized and join the Presbyterian church. The Presbyterian divines would not baptize him hecause he had heen sprinkled. The Baptists would not immerse him because he wanted to join the Presbyterians. At length a new sort of Christians, called 'Smithites,' immersed him. He then joined the Presbyterians. The church was satisfied with his sprinkling, and he with his dipping.

Note 1: Lawrence Greatrake joined the Second Baptist Church of Baltimore, near the end of 1820 -- See pp. 55-56 of Joshua Edwin Wills' 1911 book, Historical Sketch of the Second Baptist Church of Baltimore, Maryland, where this church record is excerpted: "CHURCH MEETING, November 15th, 1820... Brother Lawrence Greatrake makes application to be admitted a member of this Church. Resolved, That Brother L. Greatrake and other members of the First Church who have applied for letters of dismission to us and have been refused by their Church, be at liberty to enjoy Communion with this Church, until they find letters of dismission cannot be obtained..." -- Greatrake was a convert from communion with the Church of England, and first became a Baptist in 1814 or 1815 (in 1827 he admitted to having held that profession for thirteen years; and in 1831 Levi Haynes testified to Greatrake being a "pious member of the Baptist Church" as early as mid-1815). Greatrake evidently transferred membership from Baltimore's First Baptist Church to that city's Second Baptist congregation on his own accord. He later argued against allegations that he was "an expelled member from a church in Baltimore," by publishing an affidavit documenting his proper dismissal from "the 2nd Baptist Church of Baltimore under the Pastoral care of Elder John Healy," but he avoided any mention of an earlier church membership. Greatrake was first licensed as a preacher by the Baltimore Second Baptist Church, in 1822 (see chapt. 27 in C. B. Hassell's 1886 History of the Church of God) and he was ordained a Baptist Elder at Pittsburgh on June 13, 1824, under the hands of local pastors John Winter, David Phillips and Charles Wheeler (see The Columbian Star of July 31, 1824). Where James Phillips speaks of hearing laudations of Lawrence Greatrake, at the time of his "absence" in the Baltimore church, in "May, 1823," the writer may have been off by a year in his recollection. William H. Hart, Clerk of the Pittsburgh First Baptist Church, certified in 1825 that Greatrake arrived in that city "in the spring of the year 1824 as a member in full, regular and good standing... and as a then Licentiate minister." Probably it was in the spring of 1824, that Rev. Phillips witnessed the Baltimore Baptists taking "so much notice of" the recently departed Lawrence Greatrake.

Note 2: The "Smithites" in upstate New York, mentioned in the "Anecdote," were probably the followers of Elias Smith. Their readiness to immerse a new convert, without his having to formally join their group, resonates with the openness of Elder Matthias Luce, in immersing Alexander Campbell in June of 1812, without requiring Campbell join Luce's Ten-mile Baptist congregation (in central Washington Co., PA), as a condition for an adult "believer's" baptism. These two baptismal accounts also resemble Rev. Phillips' story of his having "baptized Ephraim Smith in the bounds of the Flat Run Church, without bringing him before the church." Within a few years the elements of "altar calls," immediate baptism upon Christian confession, and confirmation ordinances performed outside of any congregation's particular jurisdiction, became a hallmark of Campbellite proselytizing. It is probably no coincidence that Rev. Phillips points out Redstone Baptist liberal ministers Matthias Luce, David Philips, Ephraim Estep, Charles Wheeler, Henry Spears, Thomas Dacon, etc., as being "worthy brethren." Alexander Campbell was away from the print shop when this issue went through the press -- had he added his finishing editorial touches, these comrades' names would no doubt have been shortened to just their initials.


Vol. IV.                               Buffaloe, Va., October 2, 1826.                               No. 3.

[p. 55 - orig. ed.]


I have had the pleasure and the pain of visiting three associations since writing our last number. To the first, viz. the Stillwater, Ohio, I went as a spectator. To the second, viz. the Mahoning, Ohio, I went as a messenger; and to the Redstone, Pennsylvania, I went as a corresponding messenger from the Mahoning. My visit to the Stillwater and Mahoning associations was altogether agreeable. There was no vain jangling about creeds and forms; no controversy about who should be pope and cardinals. There was no interference with the inalienable rights, nor encroachment
[p. 56 - orig. ed.]
upon the liberties of the brethren, considered as individuals or as congregations. -- All was harmony and peace. I never witnessed greater harmony or more brotherly love at any public meeting than at these two meetings, especially the latter. I returned home edified and refreshed. After the respite of a day, I set out for the Redstone. As I approached its horizon, the sky began to gather blackness, the reverberation of distant thunders and the reflected glare of forked lightnings from the regions of the Laurel Hill portended a tremendous war of elements, if not a crash of worlds. Three clouds of ominous aspect surcharged with wind, one from the east, one from the north and one from the south, seemed to concentrate not far from the Old Fortification. As they approximated towards each other, they rolled out great volumes of hydrogen gas, which ignited by some electric sparks, exhibited a frightful aspect, and seemed to threaten a fiery desolation, and to hurl ruin far and wide. But to our great and agreeable disappointment it eventuated in a mere explosion of wind, which injured no green nor living thing. It purified the air, and was succeeded by a grateful and cheering calm. After having stated these meteorological observations, I proceed to give a faithful description of the meeting itself. And that our readers may have the premises before them, I will state a few historic facts.

One man whom I will not name, in the true spirit of Diotrephes, has for at least fifteen years past, lorded over the faith of the whole association, or sought to do it. He was converted under the ministry of a Methodist, and became all at once a Methodistic preacher; and having burned out somewhere near the tropic of capricorn, the cinder was carried to the arctic circle, and became a Calvinistic Baptist, of the supralapsarian order. As is usually the case with men of little information and strong passions, when converted from one extreme they run into the opposite; so with this zealous Divine. And as he was extremely lax in his faith in former times, he has bound himself with a seven fold cord never to have any communion with those who will not say they believe in the whole "Philadelphia Confession of Faith." He forms a league with two others,
[p. 57 - orig. ed.]
offensive and defensive. One of them of no standing in church or state, and the other I know nothing about, save that he has a remarkable red face, and cannot speak only at times. I mean no insinuation against his moral character; for of this I know nothing. I choose to represent each of the triumvirate by their most remarkable traits; for I do not know that I shall ever write their names in this work. These three brothers combined their efforts for the last two years to carry one point: in plain English, that one of them should be Pope, and the other two his Cardinals, the one Cardinal of the Right, and the other Cardinal of the Left. The reason of this combination was, that for a few years past the two first had fallen into their proper ranks, and could not rise to any notice but in the cause of orthodoxy. Who that has his eyes open has not seen that men of the lowest intellect and of the lowest moral endowments are the most zealous in the cause of orthodoxy? and that the reason is, they are conscious that unless they can raise a clamor about orthodoxy they are likely to pass off the stage as they ought? I have always found those of the most orthodox scent the slowest in the race, and the loudest in the sound. The foremost hound makes the least noise about the course, but those hindmost are always sounding lo here! or lo there! Having given this faithful and honest introduction to these triumvirate which is as much too circumstantial, as it is too long, I proceed to the history of the manoeuvre and intrigue by which they made themselves Pope and Cardinals.

The physical forces which they could bring into the "advisory council" they knew were inadequate to their object. For of 23 or 24 churches composing the association they were conscious that a majority would be against them. According to the constitution of the association each church could legally send three messengers which could have a seat and a vote in their resolves. After exploring the ground, and doing every thing which could be done to increase their physical forces, it was found to amount to 10 congregations; that is, they could not find ten whole congregations in the association to come into their views, but they could find a majority in their favor in the whole fractional parts of
[p. 58 - orig. ed.]
these ten churches. So that they were entitled to a representation of 30 voters. These 30 voters out of 72 which would have been a full representation of the whole association, have now to constitute themselves into the whole association. Orthodoxy must now lend its aid, and the good old constitution must be revived, though it has always been a dead letter; for not one association that ever met was regulated by it for two hours at a time. But in the constitution it is written that the churches in writing their letters shall refer to the Philadelphia Confession of Faith. They must make a bow to it in limine. This matter has been for years discussed in this association; and the more it has been examined the less it has been relished. The children in many places now see the absurdity of their fathers and mothers declaring their faith to be expressed in the Philadelphia Confession of Faith, which not one in ten of them ever saw; and not one in a hundred of them could understand if they did see it; and which not one church in America believes to be the system of truth taught in the Holy Scriptures; for some one chapter in it is rejected by every church in America. However, it will answer a good purpose to carry this point. So it was resolved by the triumvirate to cut off from 36 to 42 voters, that the 30 above referred to might be the association. And so it came to pass; for soon as the letters were read, every one that did not mention the Philadelphia Confession of Faith was handed back to the messenger, and all the voters included in the letter were rejected from the list. So that thus, in direct violation of this dead-and-alive constitution, which saith, "the letters when read shall be delivered to the moderator or clerk," the representatives of thirteen or fourteen churches were denied a seat and a vote in the association; and thus the friends of the would be Pope and Cardinals have the association to themselves. Then the thirty voters appoint their own officers. One becomes a Captain of twenty-nine individuals, and there is room for two under officers to preside over 13 each. After having elected their own officers and invited only such of the strangers to a seat as would answer their views, they proceed to the greater excommunication,
[p. 59 - orig. ed.]
having by the lesser excommunication already despatched about the three-fifths of the whole body. And here I am constrained to say, that in all my own experience and reading I have found no parallel to the procedure of these thirty voters. No inquisitorial process was ever so informal, and none more shameless and remorseless. The only thing to which I could compare it was the tyranny of Robespierre during the reign of terror in the French Revolution.

An instance or two must suffice: -- The first church on the list to be given over to Satan was that in Washington. The guillotine was now erected and the instruments were all prepared for execution. The Pope and his two Cardinals in succession belabored this church for about one hour, calling them Arian, Socinian, Arminian, Antinomian, and every thing that is bad, because they had in their letter refused to call W. B. any man Pope or Master on earth. Not one word were they allowed to say for themselves. They did not even ask the messengers of this church if they had any thing to say why the sentence of the law should not be executed upon them. By a species of what is sometimes called legerdemain, or, in the Welsh dialect, hocus pocus, one messenger, or perhaps two, had been introduced to a seat out of the 42 excluded voters, before this case of the Washington church came to judgment. One of these messengers attempted to call a halt to their procedure, but it was all in vain. The church was doomed to destruction, and a majority of thirty hands lifted up to heaven gave their head to the guillotine and their mortal remains to Satan. Next was brought up to trial Maple Creek Church, with its good old Bishop, Henry Spears. The good old man mounts the scaffold with a serene countenance, and after the triumvirate had shed a few crocodile tears over the old man and his church, whom they said they loved as their own souls, and against whose faith they had not one objection, save they had omitted to mention these words, "Philadelphia Confession of Faith," I say, out of a flow of unusual clemency they asked the good old than if he had any thing to say why he should not be beheaded and his carcase given over to Satan. He mildly having answered
[p. 60 - orig. ed.]
in the negative, the signal was given and he was despatched without a groan. Next came the venerable old Matthias Luse and his church on Pigeon Creek. In addition to the crime of not having mentioned the "Philadelphia Confession of Faith," it was alleged by the Cardinal of the Left Wing that they had been guilty of contumacy and unofficer-like conduct. This gave rise to a long debate whether they should be executed for a sin of omission or commission, which was finally decided in favor of the former. Old Matthias made no confession at the stake, but died like a sheep. At this time I stood in need of some fresh air and made my way out of the crowd. I next attended the funeral of the martyrs, and appeared no more in the presence of the sanhedrim. While I was engaged in carrying off the slain, having occasion to come nigh the guillotine, I heard the last groans of the Somerset church.

An Elder Bradley from New England had come as a messenger from Plttsburgh. He, good man, said all that a stranger could say, to shame the triumvirate and to lead them to repentance; but he might as well have spit in the face of a strong north-west wind. He was officially told that he "occupied too much ground," and must hold his tongue. His zeal in behalf of moderation so far provoked the reigning dynasty, that his faith and that of his church became towards evening heterodox. The Cardinal of the Left observed, as I am informed, that he had left the church sound in the faith a few months ago, over which Mr. Bradley now presided, but that he verily believed that he (Bradley) had become Arminian or Antinomian, or some other anti, and had corrupted them. Whereupon it was moved and seconded, that Mr. Bradley should be indicted for heterodoxy, and a committee was appointed, with his accuser as chairman to take him out to a stump not far from the meeting-house, and try him forthwith. The good little Yankee had so much presence of mind and fortitude as to refuse to be tried by his accuser, and appealed from their jurisdiction to a higher court. He was then committed to prison, or embargoed, and a committee was appointed to pursue him to Pittsburgh in due time, to try him upon the indictment. --
[p. 61 - orig. ed.]
In the meantime, I found it convenient to retire from the premises, not knowing but by some arbitrary stretch of power I might be put to death; and so I mounted my horse, and escaped out of their hands. What was done during the night I cannot tell; but so far as I have narrated I pledge myself for the truth substantially of all that I have stated upon the evidence of my own senses.

While I confess myself very doubtful of all those meetings called associations, conventions, conferences, &c. which view themselves either as a church representative, or as representatives of churches, I willingly own that the misdemeanors of these thirty voters are not to be charged to the account of, or preferred as objections against associations: for one reason; viz. they possessed not one attribute, but divested themselves of every feature, of a Baptist association. For example; suppose thirty members of congress should arrive at Washington city a few days before the others, and after several night meetings agree, that, as each newly elected member must produce, from the proper authority in his district, a letter, attesting him to be duly elected, they would reject, from a seat in that body, every member whose letter was not worded in the same set phrase, which they themselves had fixed upon as constitutional: I say, suppose that these thirty congress-men, after dismissing all the others, should proceed to call themselves the congress of the United States, and to claim the rights, and profess to perform the duties, of that body; would any man in his senses call them such, or would he object to all or any meetings of congress, because thirty individuals had taken it into their heads to tyrannize over the nation? Not the system, but the men, in this case would become the proper subjects of reprehension. It is as nearly analogous to the case in hand, as any we can well imagine. I would not, then, attack all general or public meetings of messengers from christian communities, through the medium of such monstrous occurrences; nor lay to their charge the conduct of these modern religious knight errants. But as there are the leaders and the led in this, as in all similar occurrences; and as the led are perhaps conscientious in their votes,
[p. 62 - orig. ed.]
while the leaders cannot reasonably be thought to have any conscience about it, it may be necessary to ask a few questions designed to awaken them to reflection. --

When your moderator prayed in the morning of this day of slaughter that you might "act in all your proceedings from unfeigned love to the Saviour, and the brethren, and with a single eye to the glory of God," did you say, Amen? If you did, were you in earnest? When he prayed that you "might be directed in all the proceedings of the day by the Holy Spirit," did you not remember that you had, the night before, determined on the course you would pursue? Did you ever think of the similarity of your proceedings in council to those of that Sanhedrim which condemned THE JUST ONE to the cursed tree? Did you act as a church representative, or as representatives of the consciences of your friends at home? By what law or rule in the Testament, or in the Confession of Faith, did you pretend to excommunicate churches? From what did you excommunicate them? Do you think that their not naming "the Philadelphia Confession" will preclude their admission into heaven? And if your excommunication cannot affect their standing in the estimation of the Great King and the holy angels, how much is your excommunication worth? Will it degrade them in the estimation of men, or does it not degrade you? Do you not rank a refusal to acknowledge the Confession of Faith, with murder, adultery, and theft: inasmuch, as you affix as grievous a censure, and as heavy a punishment, to the one as the other? Do you not make a denial of the Bible and of your human creed equally criminal, and equally worthy of the greater excommunication? What assurance does it give either of the faith of a church, or of an individual to say: -- "We believe in the scriptures of the Old and New Testament, as they are explained and held forth in the Philadelphia Confession of Faith?" Does this Redstone patented form of a church letter, give any assurance at all, that the church is a christian church? Would not their saying or writing any thing else be just as good proof? What sort of a foundation for christian love is this -- "We believe in the Bible as explained in the Confession
[p. 63 - orig. ed.]
of Faith?" To love for this sake, is it to love for Christ's sake? Do you think that the best way to save life is to cut off the head, to quench a flame by throwing oil upon it; or to reconcile the injured by adding to their grievances? Do you think that the Lord will thank you now, or smile upon you hereafter, for having declared that you will have no christian fellowship with those who own the same Lord, claim the same Spirit, worship the same God: hold the same faith, hope, and baptism with you, because they would neither bow the head, nor bend the knee, to your little Philadelphia Confession of Opinions? Do you think your consciences will approve it when you come to die, and that you will glory in having done so in the day of Judgment? Lastly, would you not, and ought you not, was it in your power, according to your proceedings, to bolt the gates of heaven against those churches, and banish out of that kingdom all who will not subscribe your book of dogmas?

I do not think you either will or can answer these queries; but my desire is that you may from your inability to answer them, be brought to repentance before it be measured to you, as you have measured to others.   Ed.



As I have been informed, the messengers of the non-conforming congregations agreed to go home, and report progress to the churches which sent them, and to propose to them to send messengers to Washington, Penn. on the Saturday preceding the second Lord's Day in November next; which churches, it is expected, will send persons duly empowered to act in the forming of a new association. As a majority of the non-conforming churches are in Washington county, the probability is, this new association will be called the Washington Association. It is also probable it will be constituted on more liberal principles than that which has imposed upon them the necessity of setting up for themselves. And here it may not be amiss to speak in parables to the wise; for to them similitudes are plain.

In the days of Abecedarian Popes it was decreed that a good christian just measured three feet, and for the peace and happiness of the church it was ordained that an iron bedstead, with a wheel at one end and a knife at the other, should be placed at the threshold of the church, on which the christians should all be laid. This bedstead was just three feet in the casement on the exactest
[p. 64 - orig. ed.]
French scales. Every christian, in those days, was laid on this bedstead; if less than the standard, the wheel and a rope was applied to him to stretch him to it; if he was too tall, the knife was applied to his extremities. In this way they kept the good christians, for nearly a thousand years, all of one stature. Those to whom the knife or the wheel were applied either died in the preparation, or were brought to the saving standard.

One sturdy fellow, called Martin Luther, was born in those days, who grew to the enormous height of four feet: he of course feared the bedstead and the knife, and kept off at a considerable distance deliberating how he might escape. At length he proclaimed that there was a great mistake committed by his ancestors in fixing upon three feet as the proper standard of the stature of a good christian. He made proselytes to his opinions; for many who had been tried on the three-foot bedstead, who were actually four feet, had found a way of contracting themselves to the popular standard. These began to stretch themselves to their natural stature, and Luther had, in a few years, an iron bedstead four feet long, fashioned and fixed in his churches, with the usual appendages. The wheel and the knife soon found something to do in Luther's church; and it became as irksome to flesh and blood to be stretched by a wheel and rope to four feet, or to be cut down to that stature, as it was to be forced either up or down to the good and sacred three-foot stature. Moreover, men grew much larger after Luther's time than before, and a considerable proportion of them advanced above his perfect man; insomuch that John Calvin found it expedient to order his iron bedstead to be made six inches longer, with the usual regulating appendages. The next generation found even Calvin's measure as unaccommodating as Luther's; and the Independents, in their greater wisdom and humanity fixed their perfect christian at the enormous stature of five feet. The Baptists at this time began to think of constructing an iron bedstead to be in fashion with their neighbors, but kindly made it six inches longer than the Congregationalists, and dispensed with the knife, thinking that there was likely to be more need for two wheels than one knife, which they accordingly affixed to their apparatus. It was always found, that in the same proportion as the standard was lengthened, christians grew; and now the bedstead is actually proved to be at least six inches too short. It is now expected that six inches will be humanely added; but this will only be following up an evil precedent; for experience has proved, that as soon as the iron bedstead is lengthened, the people will grow apace, and it will be found too short even when extended to six feet. Why not, then, dispense with this piece of popish furniture in the church, and allow christians of every stature to meet at the same fireside and eat at the same table? -- The parable is just, and the interpretation thereof easy and sure.

Every attempt at reformation since the rude but masculine efforts of Luther, has been based upon the same principles. He did not like the popish superstructure, notwithstanding he built upon the same foundation. So did all his successors. They all divided
[p. 65 - orig. ed.]
the New Testament into two chapters. The title of the one was THE ESSENTIALS -- and the title of the other was THE NON-ESSENTIALS In one party the one chapter, and in another party, the other, is much the larger. Still the volume comprizes but two chapters, however disproportioned they may be. Many efforts have been made to reduce the chapter of Essentials into narrower limits; but as it is reduced the other is enlarged, and the old division is kept up. The book called The Creed contains all the essentials; and as they are there correctly arranged and soundly digested, this book is more the subject of controversy than the Testament, which has the essentials and the non-essentials all jumbled together.

Suppose, then, that a number of churches should agree to throw aside the iron bedstead, and take the book in one chapter, and call it their Creed and Book of Discipline. What then? Oh! says Puritanus, Methodists, Presbyterians, Episcopalians, &c. &c. do this. Stop, my friend, not one of them dare trust themselves upon this bottom; they all have their creeds and disciplines to keep them from sinking. What then if an experiment should be made, and a fair trial of the adequacy of the Divine Book should be given; and whenever it fails of the promised end, let any other device be tried. But among all the experiments of this age and country, it is nowhere recorded that such a trial has been made and failed. I am aware of all that can be said on the other side, and still I assert that no such an experiment and result are on record. And, moreover, I do not think it is likely that it shall ever be proved by actual experiment that the New Testament, without a creed, is insufficient to preserve the unity, peace, and purity of anyone congregation, or of those of any given district. But above all, let us have no more iron bedsteads, with or without wheels or knives. -- Ed.

Note 1: For more on the Redstone Baptist Association's annual meeting at Big Redstone Church, in Fayette Co., PA at the beginning of September, 1826, see the published minutes of that meeting. The "triumvirate" whom Alexander Campbell speaks of, were Elder William Brownville of Uniontown (the "Pope); Elder Lawrence Greatrake of Pittsburgh (the "Cardinal of the Left"); and perhaps Elder James Frey of Big Redstone (the "Cardinal of the Right").

Note 2: Robert Richardson, in Vol. 2 of his Memoirs of Alexander Campbell, summarizes the 1826-27 situation as follows: "Having been appointed by the [Mahoning] Association its corresponding messenger to both the Stillwater and Redstone Associations, and the latter meeting in the following week, Mr. Campbell, after tarrying at home one day, set out to visit his old associates of disputatious memory. He found that as at the meeting of the previous year they had rejected all church letters which did not refer to the Philadelphia Confession, so now the ruling spirits had resolved to carry out their purposes with unsparing zeal. The Association consisted of twenty-three or twenty-four churches, each entitled to a representation by three messengers. As Elder Brownfield and those acting with him were aware that they could not command a majority of all the voters on any motion, they determined to prevent those opposed to them from having any participation in the business of the meeting. Out of seventy-two voters they found only thirty to be in their favor, and these thirty messengers, accordingly, representing ten churches, constituted themselves the Association, and appointing their own officers, proceeded to arraign, under the constitution, those churches which had not formally accepted the Philadelphia Confession. The fate of these churches was not long in suspense. The church at Washington, after having been denounced as Arian, Socinian, Arminian, Antinomian, etc., was first denied admission. Next the Maple Creek Church was brought up for trial and cut off, though the actors expressed great regret for its pastor, the aged Henry Spears, who was deservedly beloved. After this, the church on Pigeon Creek, with Matthias Luse as pastor, shared the same fate, as did likewise the rest, ten churches thus excluding thirteen. These high-handed measures, however, failed of their purpose, and ultimately recoiled upon those who instigated them. The excluded messengers immediately assembled at a house about a half a mile distant and requested Mr. Campbell to deliver a discourse, which he did, and upon their return home, having reported the case to their respective churches, most of these agreed to send messengers to form a new association at Washington in November, which was accordingly done. At the first meeting of this Association, on Friday, September 7, 1827, the constitution drawn up at the convention of churches in November previous was adopted as the constitution of the Association. It was very short, making no mention of the Philadelphia Confession, but declaring as the second article, "We receive the Scriptures as the only rule of faith and practice to all the churches of Christ." As it gave four messengers to each church, Brush Run Church was represented by Thomas Campbell, Joseph Bryant, John Kawkins and Joseph Matthews. Matthias Luse was chosen moderator and Ephraim Estep, clerk. James Phillips of Steubenville, John Brown of Wellsburg, S. Williams of Pittsburg and others present, were invited to seats, and after a pleasant meeting the Association adjourned to meet at Peter's Creek in September of the following year. To close the history of the Redstone Association, it may be here added that the party under Brownfield was as far from being at peace after the disruption as before, since it carried within it those discordant elements which had been the cause of dissension in the past. More liberal doctrinal views and a more favorable feeling toward missionary operations had been for some time gaining ground among the churches, and now began to prevail, while the hyper-Calvinistic sentiments and narrow policy of the minority became more and more confirmed by opposition."

Note 2: Elder Peter Vogel, writing in the Campbellite magazine, The Disciple, in 1886, also provides what purport to be recollections of the 1826 Redstone Association meetings: "The Redstone Association seems to have been "a kingdom divided against itself." It opposed the Bible-alone Brush Run Church and yet received it. In 1816, at Cross Creek, (now) West Virginia, Dr. Cox, of Somerset, being present, it heard Alexander Campbell's famous "Sermon on the Law," which was directly subversive of Article XII. of the Philadelphia "Declaration,"... by 1823 the creed spirit had grown so strong that there was a secret movement afoot, under the leadership of Elder Brownfield, to expel Alexander Campbell because of his opposition to human creeds. This movement might have succeeded had not Campbell formed a new church at Wellsburg, Ohio, and gone into the more liberal Mahoning Association of Eastern Ohio... By 1826, matters had come to such a pass that at the meeting of the Association at Big Redstone... Elder Brownfield, with his aids, had the night before fixed on a high-handed plan of action. Out of twenty-four churches, aggregating seventy-two messengers, they managed to secure ten churches, or thirty votes, in the following way: An article in the Constitution, which had long been a dead letter, required that the yearly letters of the churches to the Association should refer to the Philadelphia Confession of Faith. The ten churches that did this were declared to be the Association; these sat in judgment on the remaining fourteen churches, expelling them one by one, usually without even a hearing.... The excommunicated churches met at a house half a mile or so distant, and asked Alexander Campbell, who had been sent by the Mahoning to the Redstone Association as corresponding messenger, to preach for them. After Campbell left, they agreed to go home to report to the churches that had sent them, and to propose to them to send messengers to Washington, Pennsylvania, on the Saturday preceding the second Lord's day in the following November, for the purpose of forming a new Association. This plan was carried out, and the new body was called the Washington Association."


Vol. IV.                               Buffaloe, Va., June 4, 1827.                               No. 11.

[240-41 - reprint pagination]


From a Baptist minister in Pittsburgh, to a brother in New York published in the New York Baptist Register -- March 1, 1827.

"I use the word regular, as Mr. A. Campbell has given this appellation to all of us, who are of the old school of Baptists, and are unwilling to throw away all our articles of faith and church order, and fall into the ranks of his undisciplined and inexperienced militia. This company a few years since appeared formidable. They marched through almost every part of this region, separated many frieds, broke down and wasted many churches. It is my opinion that they will soon be so widely spread from each other's tents, and so perfectly indifferent to their own souls, or the happiness of mankind, that they will never he seen in any kind of order to attract attention."

This is a bundle of falsehoods. "Mr. A. Campbell" never gave the appellation of "Regulars" to this Pittsburgh divine nor any of his frfends. Some Baptists glory in this name and when we apply it to them it is because of their own choice. Besides, we have no evidence whatever that this correspondent is a Regular Baptist, or holds to their Confession of Faith, but 1 have good evidence to the contrary. 1t is not true that those to whom he has given the name of undisciplined militia either separated many friends, or broke down and wasted many churches. As to his opnion that they will "soon be widely spread and indifferent to their own souls," I think it is an opinion he formed to fill up a sentence in his letter; and as opinions are mighty light articles with the subject on which he writes, and that his whole letter is an exceedingly false representation of the things on which he writes, and that he is more concerned in gathering together a collection of Baptists of every strip for purposes which I will not mention, than he is to understand or teach the New Testament doctrine. The greater part of his letter is just as exceptionable as that noticed, but I have neither time nor room to say any thing more about it. When he writes again it will add to the credibility of his narrative to give the names of the "many churches" that have been wasted, and to specify a few facts to support his opinions. If the statements we generally see, descriptive of Revivals and Declensions, have no more truth in them than there is in the letter, the public are most wretchedly deceived who believe the hundredth part of what they read.

Note: The unnamed "Baptist minister in Pittsburgh" was perhaps the Rev. Lawrence Greatrake, who often used the pen name, "Regular Baptist."


Vol. V.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., August 6, 1827.                               No. 1.

[p. 3 - orig. ed.]


A Circular letter written for the Franklin Association, Ky., 1826, by the reverend Silas M. Noel, D.D. on the creed question, was republished in the Baptist Recorder, and lately republished in Cincinnati. On my late tour I was often told that it was represented and held, by the advocates of human creeds, as an unanswerable performance; as the best thing ever written on the subject; that it settled the controversy forever, &c. &c. Hearing it so highly extolled, and being so well acquainted with the versatile genius of its author, I read it with great attention, and whether it was owing to my expectation being too much elated, or to some other cause, I vouch not; but in truth, it appeared to me much below the ordinary talent of the writer, and extremely imbecile. It is, indeed, as strong in assertion and as weak in argument as any piece I have seen on the subject written in the current century. It is a condensed view of the Princeton pamphlet, in some of its strongest positions; but when apparelled in a new dress it is still more awkward and unsightly than in the full uniform of Doctor Miller. A Baptist Doctor caparisoned cap-a-pie in a Paido Doctor's regimentals, always appears as unseemly to me, as a damsel in a soldier's uniform.

The Doctor's starting point is this: -- "Creeds formed or enforced by the civil authority, are usurpations leading to persecution and to despotism, while those formed by voluntary associations of Christians, enforced by no higher penalty or sanction than exclusion from mere membership in the society, are not only lawful but necessary in the present state of the religious world."

[p. 4 - orig. ed.]
This is a mere assertion and a distinction without a difference. Creeds formed by "voluntary associations" whether convened by the state or the church are alike voluntary; alike in their tendency and results. And while the Doctor gravely makes the sanctions of those voluntary civil creeds greater than the sanctions of the voluntary ecclesiastical creeds, they are, in fact, and in effect, the same. The sanction of such creeds as the Doctor advocates, he kindly and politely calls "mere exclusion from membership" in the kingdom of heaven, while the sanction of the creed he condemns is worse than mere exclusion from that kingdom; that is, civil pains, such as confiscation of goods, exile, imprisonment, or death. So that exclusion from temporal advantages is much greater in the Doctor's view than exclusion from the kingdom of heaven. The Doctor, I admit, does not speak out so explicitly as he would do in a better cause. He does not like to appear, on this occasion, with Peter's girdle and the keys of the kingdom of heaven dangling on his loins. This he knew would illy comport with the leathern girdle of the Harbinger, and would not suit the spirit or taste of this age. But when we draw aside the Doctor's surplice we shall, under the leathern girdle, see the mighty keys, somewhat rusted it is true, but cast in the good old Roman mould, with the sublime initials of P. M. V. I. C. with the good old motto "Procul profanes" -- Hence you profane.

The short metre of the Doctor's music is this: Our church is the church of Jesus Christ called, in the New Testament, "the kingdom of heaven," and all who are worthy members of it, shall be worthy members in the kingdom of glory; all who are justly excluded from it, are justly excluded from the kingdom of glory -- because we act by the authority of the great King, and we all allow that the great King will not exclude, nor allow to be excluded, from his kingdom on earth, such as he will receive into his kingdom of glory.

I know how the Doctor would try to save himself here. He would tell us that he does not consider his church as the only church of Christ, and he will very courteously and kindly tell all his orthodox neighboring churches that they are all churches of Jesus Christ, equally with
[p. 5 - orig. ed.]
his own; and that by his sanctions to his creed, he means no more than to tell the excluded that he is not quite so good company as he could wish, but that he can be accommodated equally well with a place in some other good natured church of Christ; and that he hopes to meet him in the heavenly kingdom though he has some objections to fraternizing with him "in the present state of the religious world." Here Doctor Miller and Doctor Noel politely and graciously shake hands, and bid each other good bye. And in parting, say, You, dear Doctor, keep your church pure from me by your creed, and I will keep my church pure from you by my creed; but, God bless you, dear brother Doctor, for although "in the present state of the religious world" it is fitting that you should commune under your creed, and I under the banners of mine, I do believe we shall commune in heaven together and be both welcomed there by the great King as good and faithful servants; I for excluding you, and you for excluding me. The Princeton Doctor says, O dear Doctor Noel! I will receive you into my pure communion, will you not receive me!! The Doctor of Oakley rejoins, Farewell, Doctor Miller; I thank you for your assistance in the creed question; but while you rantize these little puklings I do not like to sit by your side -- excuse me, dear Doctor, I love you and we will both feast at the same table above.

In this pithy, polite, and good natured way, our Baptist Doctor excuses himself for all the sanctions of his creed -- which means neither proscription, nor persecution; tyranny, nor usurpation; but a little good natured chicanery.

But to quote Horace once more, as I know one Aleph in Kentucky, who has a dictionary of quotations.
"Sed tamen amoto queramas seria ludo;" let us come to the starting point again. The Doctor begins this puissant circular with a petitio principii, and ends with an argumentum ad verecundiam. But for the present we shall canvass his Alpha or his Aleph, and leave Omega till another day. To tell the naked truth with that candor and simplicity which I desire always to be characteristic of my pen -- it is all downright sophistry from first to last. And I did wish never to be called
[p. 6 - orig. ed.]
to notice this letter, because of my personal regard for its author. But when solemnly called to the task, we must know no man after the flesh. I will then, as far as in me lies, repress this pen of mine from all irony or satire, and with the utmost gravity examine the capital assumptions of the writer.

It is assumed that mere exclusion from membership in a society claiming the high title and character of a church of Jesus Christ, is a sanction to a human creed of no such great moment as the persecutions and proscriptions which sanction human creeds framed by civil power. This is obviously a fundamental error. The excluded are generally proscribed to the utmost extent of the excluders. If it be so that the excluded from any church in the government, are not injured in their political character and standing, we have reason to thank the liberality and independence of those who brought about such a state of civil society, and not the creed nor the priest which excludes. But I do most sincerely think that it is no small matter, no "mere" little thing to be solemnly proscribed the kingdom of heaven by those little idols which the sects worship, whether authorized by letters patent from the sceptre or from the Mitre. -- And however we may choose to word it, when we desire to carry our point with guile, to exclude a man from "mere membership" in the church is an act of the most awful import, and unless sanctioned by the great King and head of all authority and power, it is an usurpation and a tyranny, than which there is not any more heinous.

Again, the Doctor assumes that "creeds formed and enforced" by a voluntary association are lawful. But he has forgotten to lay before us the law and the testimony. To assert that such are lawful is not enough -- we want to see the law. But this cannot be shown, and therefore we cannot see it. It may be lawful in the civil code of Kentucky or of Scotland; but we are not to be satisfied with civil statutes in matters of this sort. Let us have a Divine law authorising a voluntary association to form and enforce any religious creed, and we will yield the point at issue. But until this is done we must view the assumption as perfectly gratuitous.

[p. 7 - orig. ed.]
In the next place the Doctor assumes that churches are "voluntary associations." These terms ought not to pass current until tried. Human establishments of a sectarian character, may, perhaps, be called "voluntary associations," because begotten and born of the will of man. But I am far, very far, from granting that the church of Jesus Christ is a "voluntary association." Men and women, it is true, ought to become members of it with their own consent. But the constitution and laws and institutes of this society are not at our option nor rejection. No man can reject, or new modify, or refuse them obedience, and be guiltless. No man is allowed of his own will and free consent to make a church covenant, to decree church laws, or institute any religious observance. I wish for a definition of the terms voluntary association when applied to the church of Christ. I promise to show that if the Doctor attempts this he either refutes his own circular or directly assails the New Covenant or constitution of the kingdom of heaven.

I offer these remarks upon the Doctor's starting point alone. His letter wants method. He ought first to have given his definition of a creed, and then to have given the law and the testimony. But he begins as I have noticed and then gives his definition. His definition I will attend to in my next.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. V.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., September 3, 1827.                               No. 2.

[p. 34 - orig. ed.]


Rev. Silas Noel, D. D. thus defines his creed: "By a creed, we mean an epitome, or summary exhibition of what the scriptures teach." The Rev. Samuel W. Crawford, of Chambersburgh, Pa. who this year has printed a sermon on creeds, on the hypothesis that Dr. Miller and his predecessors had left something undone which he could achieve, has defined his creed thus, p. 6. "Creed is derived from the Latin word credo, I believe, and means simply that which any one believes, whether expressed by the
[p. 35 - orig. ed.]
living voice, or exhibited in written or printed language. It also signifies a system of evangelical truth, deduced from the scriptures by uninspired men, printed in a book, and made a term of ecclesiastical fellowship." The Rev. G. Waller defines a creed to be, every thing a man preaches or writes, and to this agrees the opinion of my friend and brother, Rev. Spencer Clack, who declares all that a man writes on religion to be his religious creed. I could fill a few pages very conveniently with definitions of creeds, but these will suffice at present. To begin with Dr. Noel, whose creed is "a summary exhibition of what the scriptures teach." As we have never seen the Doctor's creed in writing or in printed characters, nor heard him preach it all, for this he cannot do until he has preached his last sermon, we cannot form any opinion upon its perfection or imperfection, as coming up to his definition. He tells us it is not the scriptures themselves, but a summary exhibition of what they teach. This summary exhibition, then, is that which is to preserve the purity of the church. What the scriptures teach in their own proper arrangement, and in their own terms and phrases, is inadequate to this great end; but the summary exhibited in the Doctor's arrangement and terms will answer this glorious object. Query. How much more valuable is the summary exhibition than the whole inspired volume? Query again. What a pity that the Lord did not command his apostles to draw up a summary exhibition, knowing, as he must have known, that without this "summary exhibition," his church must have gone into dilapidation and ruin. Arians, Socinians, Universalists, Baptists and Presbyterians, must, without it, have formed one communion. And what a pity that the apostles had not, "out of their own head," given this "epitome or summary exhibition," before they died. But on Mr. Crawford's definition, this would not have answered the purpose, for his creed "must be deduced from scripture by uninspired men." And on Messrs. Wallet and Clack's definition, it would have been impossible to have done it, for it required all "the sermons, orations, and lectures" of our Lord and his apostles to make their creed, and all that they wrote and spoke during their whole lives constituted their creed. For all that I have written is, with them, so many articles of my creed -- and how voluminous it may be before finished, neither I nor they can predict.

We want to see Dr. Noel's "summary exhibition" more than any other. For his creed is nuncupative. He has not yet committed it to writing. The little creed book made or adopted by the Philadelphia Association is not his creed. For he has declared he does not believe it all, and he sometimes "constitutes churches" on one creed and sometimes on another. I have heard of two or three which he constituted upon "no summary exhibition" whatever; but on the platform of the whole volume in cumulo. I do herein and hereby sincerely request him to publish to the world his "summary exhibition," and to show us what the scriptures teach. For as I do well know there is not in print on this continent one such summary exhibition as he approves, believes, or practices. For against the Philadelphia creed he has most serious
[p. 36 - orig. ed.]
and important objections. And it is not many years since he attempted to publish a creed, but for some reasons abandoned it. And although Aleph and Beth should "bury the tomahawk," and agree on other principles of operation, still it will be necessary to publish the summary, or cruelly to desert the church to wolves and tigers, stripped of its only guardian, an epitome of what the scriptures teach. I repeat, the Doctor ought, on his own principles, to print the summary; for he says, p. 5, "a nuncupative creed is not calculated to quiet disturbances, or to exclude corruption." "If," adds he, "we use a religions test at all, we should be honest and independent enough to avow it." Honesty and independence, then, as well as the fitness of things require the publication of an epitome. To pretend to hold to the Philadelphia Confession, when it is neither believed nor practised, is to make it, and treat it, no better than the Bible. If the Doctor believes it to be the desired epitome, honor and honesty require him to avow it; if not, let us have a faithful one.

But on glancing over the Doctor's circular, I find an epitome stated in it, and lest I should be contradicted by it in inserting that there is no epitome or summary exhibition in print, such as the Doctor approves, I must lay this epitome before my readers. It is in the following words, p. 7. "The Bible plainly teaches, as I read and believe, the deplorable and total depravity of human nature, the essential divinity of the Saviour, a trinity of persons in the godhead; justification by the imputed righteousness of Christ; and regeneration and sanctification by the Holy Spirit, as indispensable to prepare the soul for heaven." Is this the summary exhibition of all the Bible teaches, or of what the Bible teaches?-- !! Are these "the only radical truths?" Oh! that we "could see ourselves as others see us!" What a pity that God should have employed so many prophets and apostles for so many centuries, who have written so many pages to teach us no more than may be summarily comprehended in the above epitome.

Not a word of the perseverance of the saints -- not a word of the resurrection of the dead, eternal judgment, of eternal salvation or damnation in the above "summary exhibition of what the Bible teaches." On this epitome Sadducees and Universalists might get into the bosom of the Doctor's church. Blessed be God that my faith is not to be measured out to me in spoonfuls by any such epitomizing Doctors! and that I can smile at the folly and deplore the weakness of such summary exhibits of what the Bible teaches. I should not have been astonished at the above epitome, had not my friend, the Doctor, added, "These I believe to be the radical truths which God hath revealed in his word," yes, "the fundamental principles." Mark it well -- "THE radical truths" -- THE fundamental principles!"

Now, reader, you know the definite article the is inclusive and exclusive -- it includes and excludes every thing foreign to that to which it is applied. Doctors of Divinity are all Doctors of literary attainments. And Doctor Noel is distinguished as a belles-lettres scholar. The resurrection of the dead, and eternal life and death, are not among "the radical" nor "the fundamental truths;" and
[p. 37 - orig. ed.]
from all in the above epitome, I know not whether the Doctor would make them any truths at all taught in the Bible. Whether such an epitome, or a general declaration, "I believe what the Bible teaches," furnishes the more or the most satisfactory data on which to unite in church fellowship, I would not spend one sentence to prove. But as this matter is sufficiently exposed, I proceed to notice that there never has been, nor ever can be, "a summary exhibition," nor "an epitome of what the Bible teaches," written out by the hand of man. If all the Doctors on earth were to meet in one solemn conclave, and sit seventy years longer than the Council of Trent, they cannot write out such an epitome. And I do here promise, that if any man attempts to give such a summary exhibition, even Dr. Noel himself, I will shew that it is no epitome, no summary exhibition at all. So that if what I have now said be correct, and the Doctor's definition of a human creed be correct, then it follows no such a creed as he would make a religious test can be furnished from the pen of mortal man. Now remember we are at issue here, and that I stand pledged to shew, when any such epitome is written out, that it is not "a summary exhibition of what the Bible teaches;" and I think, my opponents themselves being judges, it will be awarded that I have now shewn that the Doctor's radical and fundamental truths are no epitome, compend or summary of what the Bible teaches. I do not care how the human creed advocates transmografy or metamorphose themselves on the question -- I do not care how they change the mode of defence or the definitions -- I am just as conscious that I can ferret them out, and shew them and the world that it is all downright sophistry as I am that I can lift 50 pounds weight.

The Baptist Recorder editors have changed the question altogether. A creed, with them, is all that a man preaches or writes. "Your creed," says brother Clack in his first letter to me -- "I mean your writings." Here is the proof, or a summary exhibition of it, that a man's writings are what they call his creed. But is not this most sophistical? Who contends that his writings should be made a term of communion -- a test of christian character? If Messrs. Waller and Clack do so, I hereby declare I do not. If any man or set of men should attempt such a thing, I hereby protest against them. The indiscriminate use and application of the term "creed" unsettles the question altogether. Now I candidly acknowledge there is much more honest, independence, firmness, and candor, apparent in the writings of Dr. Miller and the Rev. Crawford, than in any of the Baptist advocates of creeds. The Paido Doctors boldly and unequivocally avow what they mean, and defend themselves as unambiguously as they can. But there is such shuffling and changing, such settling and unsettling, such defining and misdefining the terms or the chief term in this question, among the Baptist Doctors, that it exhibits either great misgivings within, or inability to reason on the subject. When a term is changed in its meaning by any controversialist, all logicians know and admit that the person who changes it either begs the question, abandons the cause, or misrepresents his opponent. To say that I make a creed of my writings, or that they come up to
[p. 38 - orig. ed.]
Dr. Noel's definition, is without all reason, argument, or proof. I have never once attempted to form a creed upon Dr. Noel's plan, Dr. Millers, or any other plan. And if the question is now to be argued, Whether my writings constitute a creed, or in writing I am making a creed for others, let the former question be abandoned and I am at my post to defend myself at a moment's warning. But, gentlemen, no more of this sophistry. I have not yet done with Dr. Noel's definition, but I do not wish to weary him out, or my readers at one time on this trite question.

Note: See also Dr. Noel's criticisms of Alexander Campbell's theology, as published in his "circular letter," in the 1830 Minutes of the Franklin Baptist Association.


Vol. V.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., October 1, 1827.                               No. 3.

[p. 70 - orig. ed.]

The Mahoning Regular Baptist Association did one good work at their last meeting. They agreed to support one active, spiritually minded, and able brother, as a messenger of the churches, who is to labor every day, for one entire year, all things concurring, in the word and doctrine, amongst the churches in the Association. He is to proclaim the word to those without, and to teach those within to walk in the Lord. Brother Walter Scott, who is now in the field, accepted of the appointment; and few men on this continent understand the ancient order of things better than he. His whole soul is in the work, and there is great room for many such at home. It is to be hoped that all christians will turn their attention more to good works and to the conversion of those around them, and to the union of all disciples on primitive grounds, in order that the whole world may be brought under the dominion of the Root and Offspring of David. The religious communities of this country have long enough indulged the idea of converting other nations, and have squandered many thousands already, as well as sacrificed many useful lives in the chimerical project of converting foreign idolators, while millions at home demand more energies than all now employed to ameliorate their condition, and to accelerate the march of truth on its own high road throughout the earth. "Holy Father, may all that believe on me through the testimony of the apostles, be one -- that the whole world may be converted and persuaded that you did send me to be the Saviour of the world!" So spoke the Lord Jesus -- and who will not say, Amen?

TO  REV.  S. M. NOEL, D. D.

Dear Sir,
    I Am obliged to request you to explain a small moral impropriety. The Minutes of the Franklin Association were published not more than two or three days after my first notice of your circular could have reached Frankfort. My first notice of it was published at Bethany on the 6th of August. The Franklin Association met the 4th of the same month. The August number could not have been received by you before the middle of August, about the time the Minutes were in press at Frankfort. How, then, could you have stated to the public, in a notice prefixed to said Minutes, that my fruitless assault on your circular had created a demand for it unprecedented and surprising, and it was implied that my assault had helped to sell some editions of your circular.

This needs some explanation from you. It is understood that it was through you, if not by you, this notice was prefixed to the Minutes. It is well known that my "assault" on your circular could not have been more than read by yourself and a few others in Frankfort when the Minutes were published. The question, then, is, How in one, or two days at most, my remarks could create a demand for your circular unprecedented and surprising, and contribute to sell three editions of it? This unprecedented and surprising fact, that two days at most after the arrival of my first notice of your circular, it should have created such an enormous demand as compelled you to announce the fact on the frontispiece of the Minutes, without leave or license from the Association, requires a word or two of explanation from yourself. That charity which hopeth all things, induces me to hope that you will find some way of explaining this thing to divest it, at least, of any moral impropriety.

Note: It is unclear, in Campbell's announcement of Elder Scott's appointment as an internal "messenger" for the "Mahoning Regular Baptist Association," whether or not Campbell guessed at the subsequent impact of Scott's evangelical preaching. Certainly Scott's efforts quickly extended beyond the membership of the previously constituted congregations in the Mahoning Association. Scott joined the recent innovation of the preacher's "altar call" to Campbell's own theology on Christian confession and baptismal remission of sins, to produce a new and highly effective conversion methodology. Since Scott (soon joined his co-religionists Adamson Bentley and Sidney Rigdon) began making multitudes of new Christians, outside the immediate control of the Mahoning congregations, his new style of evangelism had a decisive impact, both upon relations within the Mahoning Association, and upon relations between that body and neighboring Baptist associations. The net result was a massive increase in the "Reformed Baptist" ranks, followed by the denominational disgrace and demise of the Mahoning Association -- all of which led to the eventual founding of the Disciples of Christ denomination. Surely Thomas and Alexander Campbell must have comprehended the probable outcome of Scott's new mission. Whether they actively planned and implemented Scott's missionary preaching, without openly taking any credit (and while demonstrating some initial signs of disapproval), remains unknown. See Campbell's follow-up reporting, under the heading of "Quarterly Meeting" in his issue for Feb. 4, 1828.


Vol. V.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., February 4, 1828.                               No. 7.

[p. 66 - orig. ed]


Walter Scott, who is now doing the work of an Evangelist in the Mahoning Baptist Association, informs me, per letter of the 4th ultimo, that he had made an experiment in preaching the ancient gospel for the ten days preceding the date of his letter. -- He states the effects as having been immediate and astonishing -- no less than thirty having been immersed in that time. He says, "After having announced the gospel in the terms of the Apostles, I have awakened the lyre of Israel, and sung forth the high songs of salvation to all who believe and are baptized, declaring a just and a merited damnation to all who disobey God, piping forth the terrors of the Lord, and congregating the rebellious from Cain to Judas, and from him to the resurrection of the dead, A quarterly meeting is to be holden at Fairfield, Columbiana county, on the first Friday of February."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. V.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., June 2, 1828.                               No. 11.

[269-271 - reprint pagination]

Kentucky, April 15, 1828.                               


The following query was sent up to a small Association in this state for an answer: --

"What must a church do with her preacher who has embraced Campbellism?" To which the Association in her wisdom, replied, "As we know not what Campbellism is, we cannot tell her what to do."

A correspondent in Kentucky asks me, "What Campbellism is?" To which I answer: It is a nickname of reproach invented and adopted by those whose views, feelings, and desires are all sectarian; who cannot conceive of Christianity in any other light than an ism. These isms are now the real reproaches of those who adopt them, as they are the intended reproaches of those who originate and apply them. He that gives them when they are disclaimed, violates the express law of Christ. He speaks evil against his brother, and is accounted as a railer or reviler, and placed along with haters of God and those who have no lot in the kingdom of heaven. They who adopt them out of choice disown the Christ and insult him; for they give the honor which is due to him alone to the creature of the Devil; for all slander and detractions are of the creation of the Devil. If christians were wholly cast into the mould of the Apostle's doctrine, they would feel themselves as much aggrieved and slandered in being called by any man's name, as they would in being called a thief, a fornicator, or a drunkard. And they who bestow such names are actuated either by the spirit of foolish jesting, or that vengeful spirit which would sacrifice the life as well as the reputation of those who deprive them of the means of self-aggrandizement at the expense of the intelligence, liberty, and true happiness of mankind. One uninspired man's name weighs as much as another's when put into the scales of the sanctuary, and where good information and moral character exist it is just as honorable: but no intelligent christian could be pleased to be named a Paulite, a Cephite, though either of these is a thousand times, ten thousand times more, honorable than a Calvinist or Lutheran. But neither Paul nor Peter would own that man as a consistent disciple of Christ who chooses to call himself by Paul, Apollos, or Cephas. I have always disclaimed every thing sectarian; and if the people of the different sects slander me or any of those who prefer the scriptures to any human creed, and the kingdom of Jesus the Messiah, to any sect; I say, if they slander us with the names and epithets which we disavow, they must answer to him who judges righteously. But for ourselves we protest against the name, the precepts, the feelings of any sect or schism in christendom.

Though some persons use such names without the intention of slander or reproach, and are not conscious of doing wrong, they ought to remember that in this way all sectarian names began to be approved. The time was that the terms Lutheran and Calvinist were a reproach. When these men died they became honorable, and are now gloried in. This was effected by the admirers of these men; first for the sake of distinction and to avoid circumlocution, and then with acquiescence, adopting the designation which their opposers gave them.

We wish all the friends of the ancient gospel and the ancient order of things, to remember that our motto is, and we hope ever will be, to call no man Master or Father, in the things pertaining to the kingdom of our Lord.


Received by the last mail, stating the success of the ancient gospel in different parts of the country.

"Bishop Jeremiah Vardeman, of Kentucky, since the first of November last, till the first of May, immersed about five hundred and fifty persons."

"Bishop John Smith, of Montgomery co. Kentucky, from the first Lord's day in February, to the 20th of April, immersed three hundred and thirty-nine."

"Bishops Scott, Rigdon, and Bentley, in Ohio, within the last six months have immersed about eight hundred persons." ...

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. V.                               Buffaloe, Brooke Co., Va., July 7, 1828.                               No. 12.

[286 - reprint pagination]


Mr. Brantley has prudently declined answering the interrogations proposed him some time since. He finds now that it would have been the best policy, and, all things considered, it is yet the best policy to be silent and to allow us to advocate our cause without resistance. Full well he seems to know how vulnerable the popular side is, and how hard it is to kick against the goads,

But I cannot see either christian heroism or even moral valor
displayed in hissing his dogs upon us, while the law of self-preservation has compelled him to seek the other side of a sturdy oak, and has reconciled him to that silence so essential to the safety of those who stand behind a tree. In the Star of the 17th of May, he gives me a faithful slandering, by the means of a dear brother in Pittsburg. Mr. Brantley "vouches" for the respectability and christmn standing of the writer, and "conscientiously regards us" as lawful plunder, made to be taken and destroyed. If, as is generally believed, Mr. Williams be the writer of this affectionate letter, we do not know whether from personal acquaintance with him, Mr. Brantley has become his voucher, or from mere fame. But not intending in the least to derogate one iota from Mr. Williams, I should think that stating the name of his correspondent would have rendered his vouching unnecessary -- and have enabled all parties to form a more correct estimate of the importance due to such high authorities. But we shall hear this "dear brother" speak for himself: --

"The taste of many has been spoiled by reading Campbell's Christian Baptist, which you know forbids the reading of any other paper but itself, and really has a tendency to excite disgust at every pious effusion, and holy enterprise, It, however, is read by very few who wish to learn holiness; and by very few, compared with the many who some time past read it with a waking curiosity, and swallowed it with a hungry avidity. It is the most strange thing that men cannot see the inconsistencies of that work, and of that people. They forbid preaching, but preach themselves Forbid writing upon religious subjects, but write themselves They ridicule confessions, but refer you to one of a thousand pages, namely, the Christian Baptist. Ridicule the support of the ministry, but give one about 400 dollars a year. Cry down missionaries, but merely send out Walter Scott, not to receive any thing fur his labor, but to take the above sum from the churches. But what is more strange, they have been regenerated by being immersed in water, have been born again. Mr. Scott was baptized first by Mr. Forrester. Supposition: he was born a Sandemanian, Mr. Forrester being the agent. Query; 1s Mr. Scott now an Arian? Mr. Gaston, lately baptized, denies that Jesus Christ is God, and scorns the idea of his atonement for sin. So Nicodemus, you need not wonder that a man can be born twice!"
Columbian Star, May 17, 1828.    

Had this "dear brother" kept within the sphere of mortal man, and mt usurped the throne of the Judge of the living and the dead, his communication had been worthy of less severe reprobation. But when he assumes omniscience and pronounces on the hearts of the great mass of my readers as destitute of the love of holiness, and when he invades the unseen world and denounces the dead who believed the gospel, as Sandemanian in their hearts, which with him is no better than the faith of
demons, I say, when, with the air of sovereign arbiter, he thus decides upon the living and the dead, we scarcely know how to approach, this communication, which, as Mr. Brantley says, "shows his good discemment." I had thought that the best discernment of purblind mortals could not reach the human heart, nor the mansions of the dead. But the dear brother seems to rise above his race, and to le we his cmnpeers at an infinite distance behind. Had he loved truth more, and slander less -- had he respected the reputation of those who never invaded his, but treated him with kindness and respect -- had he confined himself to facts, and not given scope to his inventive faculties, I should have found some excuse for his sin. But as it is I will take no other notice of his defamations than the following.

It is not true that the Christian Baptist "forbids the reading of any paper but itself." It is not true that it is read by "very few compared with the many who once read it;" for it is read by many hunrdeds more this year than ever before. It is not true that it "forbids preaching." It is not true that it forbids writing." It is not true that it refers to any "confession of a thousand pages." It is not true that it ridicules the support of the christian bishops, but it does not approve of the clercal salaries nor of the money schemes of such zpirits as make "the ministry" a trade.

Now let him give the page, or the proof of what he inserts, if he can. But I positively say, he cannot, What he says of Walter Scott, and the late Mr. Forrester, Mr. Gaston, and others, is such a perversion of facts, and so much in the same spirit of defamation, that lt deserves no other remark than this: that, as he has invented calmnnies, and published the most palpable falsehood concerning this work, for which he cannot produce the least authority; we cannot find any good reason to be at the pains of proving him a false witness in other matters, the development of which would require more room in this work than the merit of the thing requires

I could wish that the author of this letter, as he is supposed to be a preacher, would sometimes take for his text 1 Cor. vi. 10. and it would not be amiss if he should dwell with much emphasis on the fact that Paul associates defamers and revilers with thieves and murderers, and declares that such cannot enter the kingdom of God.

I need only add that it would give me much pleasure to be able to exonerate Mr. Williams fmm the charge of being the author of this most unjust and ungenerous attack. As far as I am implicated in his communications to his "dear brother," plead not guilty; but have no disposition to retaliate upon him, farther than to deny hls accusations.   EDITOR

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VI.                               Bethany, Brooke Co., Va., June 1, 1829.                               No. 11.

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The Jewish people were often called "the kingdom of God." because God was in a peculiar sense their King. For certain purposes he selected them, distinguished them, and took them under his own immediate protection. He gave them laws, ordinances, and customs, which had both a specific and general influence, and were preparatory to a new and better order of society. The new order of society which arises out of the belief of the gospel, is often called "the reign or kingdom of Heaven." In this kingdom the subjects enjoy more exalted blessings, and stand in new and heavenly relations unknown before the coming of the Messiah. There is also the "kingdom of heaven, or glory," properly so called. This is the residence of angels, the abode of the saints, and the mansions of glory. The gates of admission into these three kingdoms are different -- Flesh, Faith, and Works. To be born of the flesh, or to be a descendant of Abraham, introduced a child into the first kingdom of God. To be born of water and spirit, through faith in Jesus Christ, brings men and women into the second kingdom. But neither flesh, faith, nor water, without good works, will introduce a man or woman into the third kingdom. The nature of these three kingdoms, the privileges enjoyed by the subjects, and the terms of admission, are very imperfectly understood in the present day. These kingdoms are unhappily confounded in the minds of many. Hence we find that what is affirmed of the nature, subjects, and terms of admission of one, is frequently applied to another. This is one of the roots of popery, and all the hierarchies in christendom have sprung from it.

The nature of the kingdom of God amongst the Jews is very different from the nature of the kingdom of God amongst the christians, and both are different from the kingdom of glory. The subjects are just as different. Under the first they were carnal; all the descendants of Jacob, without regard to regeneration, were lawful subjects of the first kingdom. None can be subjects of the second unless born again; and flesh and blood cannot inherit the third and ultimate kingdom.

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I have discovered that the objections offered against the scriptural design and import of christian immersion, are based upon a misapprehension of the nature and privileges of these three kingdoms. Under the first there were various ablutions, purgations, and sin-offerings, which never perfected the conscience; but which, for the time being, served as symbols or types of a real purgation which would be enjoyed under the Reign of Heaven, or second kingdom. These sacrifices did not cleanse the worshippers, else, as Paul reasons, the worshippers, once cleansed, would have no more consciousness of sins. Under the christian economy a real remission of sins is constantly enjoyed by all the subjects or citizens, and, as Paul argues, where remission of sins is enjoyed no more sacrifice for sin is needed. Now if the Jews by faith foresaw through the symbols the shedding of Christ's blood, the question is, Why could they not by faith in his sacrifice enjoy, as well as we, the remission of sins? The sacrifice of Christ, viewed prospectively, was as efficacious as when viewed retrospectively, to effect the cleasing of the conscience. And could they not, through one sacrifice, have more clearly understood the design of Christ's sacrifice, than by so many sacrifices. But it is a provision in the constitution of the christian kingdom which greatly distinguishes it from the Jewish, "that the sins and iniquities of the citizens shall be remembered no more." No daily, weekly, nor annual remembrances of sins under the reign of favor. This, faith in the sacrifice of Christ discovers, and submission to his institution puts us into the actual possession of that remission which never was enjoyed before.

Now, as Paul teaches, under the Constitution of the New Kingdom, remission of sins is a natural birthright. Hence every one, so soon as he enters the second or christian kingdom, or is born of "water and spirit, is pardoned and accepted. So that those who are born into the kingdom of heaven, or christian kingdom, have peace with God, and sin cannot lord it over them; for they are not under law, but under favor.

But many say, "What will become of our Paidobaptist brethren, and millions more, if these things be so?" This is a stale objection which has been urged against every reformation in religion from the days of John Huss down to this century. I will, however, answer the interrogatory. They cannot enjoy the blessings of the second kingdom; in other words, they cannot have or enjoy that light, peace, liberty, and love, which are the national privileges of all who intelligently enter the kingdom of favor.

But the objector means, Can they enter into the third kingdom, or kingdom of gfory? I am prepared to say that my opinion is, and it is but an opinion, that infants, idiots, and some Jews and Pagans may, without either faith or baptism, be brought into the third kingdom, merely in consequence of the sacrifice of Christ; and I doubt not but many Paidobaptists of all sects will be admitted into the kingdom of glory. Indeed all they who obey Jesus Christ, through faith in his blood, according to their knowledge, I am of opinion will be introduced into that kingdom. But when we talk of the forgiveness of sins which comes to christians through immersion, we have no regard to any other than the second kingdom, or the kingdom

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of favor. I repeat it again -- there are three kingdoms: the Kingdom ot Law, the Kingdom of Favor, and the Kingdom of Glory; each has a different constitution, different subjects, privileges, and terms of admission. And who is so blind, in the christian kingdom, as not to see that more is necessary to eternal salvation or to admission into the everlasting kingdom, than either faith, regeneration, or immersion. A man can enter into the second kingdom by being born of water and the spirit; but he cannot enter into the third and ultimate kingdom through faith, immersion, or regeneration. Hence says the Judge, Come you blessed of my Father, and inherit the kingdom of glory -- Because you believed? No. Because you were immersed? No. Because you were born again by the Holy Spirit? No -- but because I know your good works, your piety, and humanity. I was hungry, and you fed me, &c.

The plain state of the case is this: -- The blood of Abraham brought a man into the kingdom of law, and gave him an inheritance in Canaan. Being born not of blood, but through water and the Spirit of God, brings a person into the kingdom of favor; which is righteousness, peace, joy, and a holy spirit, with a future inheritance in prospect. But if the justified draw back, or the washed return to the mire, or if faith die and bring forth no fruits -- into the kingdom of glory he cannot enter. Hence good works through faith, or springing from faith in Jesus, give a right to enter into the holy city -- and this is a right springing from grace or favor: -- "Blessed are they who keep his commandments that they may have a right to the tree of life and enter through the gates into the city." This right, as observed, springs from a constitution of favor. And while men are saved by grace, or brought into the second kingdom, (for all in it are said to be saved in the New Testament style) by favor, they cannot enter the heavenly kingdom, but by patient continuance in well doing. So stands the decree of the Lord Almighty as I understand the Oracles.

Those who desire the enjoyment of remission of sins, peace with God, and abundance of joy, can obtain them through submission to an institution of pure favor, as already defined. But when wo speak of admission into the everlasting kingdom, we must have a due respect to those grand and fundamental principles so clearly propounded in the New Institution. We must discriminate between the kingdom of favor, and the kingdom of glory.

This is in anticipation of my essays on the Jewish and Christian Dispensations, and I am compelled to divulge so much of the views which I have to lay before my readers under more appropriate heads, and as the results of premises not yet developed: I say, I am compelled to cross the Jordan, and to pull a cluster of the grapes to show those who are halting between two opinions, that there is good fruit in the land to which I invite them. The following narrative will shed more light on the three kingdoms: --


While musing upon the three kingdoms, I fancied myself in the kingdom of glory after the final judgment. Amongst my companions in that happy kingdom, I was introduced to one Simeon, a Jew, who had been converted to christianity eight years after the

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resurrection of Jesus Christ. While in conversation on the wonders of redemption, Simeon gave us the following narrative. "I have been," said he, "a subject of these three kingdoms, and now I discern not only the true nature and design of each, but I am enraptured in contemplating the manifold wisdom developed in their respective constitutions. I was, when born of the flesh, born a citizen of the commonwealth of Israel. I was circumeised and made partaker of all the privileges of the first or prefatory kingdom of God. I distinctly remember all my views and feelings under that economy. When I waited at the altar and worshipped in the sanctuary, my conscience was often troubled, and its momentary pacifications were like the occasional appearances of the sun in a dark and cloudy day. If I felt peace at the altar, so soon as I mingled with ray fellow-citizens, I contracted pollution, and my sin was ever before me; my iniquities took such hold upon me, that, at times, I could not lift up my eyes. Hopes and fears, joys and sorrows, alternated in my bosom. The thunders of Sinai and the flashing vengeance that destroyed in a moment thousands of my nation, often occurred to me. I prayed with fear and trembling. I expected a Redeemer, but knew not the nature of his redemption. But finally I believed that Jesus of Nazareth was he. I saw that his institution differed from that of Moses, as the sun excelled a star. I apprehended the reign of favor, and gladly became a citizen of the second kingdom. I was born of water and of the Spirit, and obtained a remission of sins, of which I had never formed an idea under the kingdom of law. The sacrifice of Jesus, and the divine testimony or assurance which I had from God our Father, in the proclamation of mercy, cured my conscience and implanted new life within me. I felt myself in a new kingdom, in a kingdom of favor. Sin did not now lord it over me as before, and my heart beat in unison with the favor which superabounded; so that, in comparison of the former kingdom, my sun always shone in a bright and cloudless sky. If, in one thought, I felt myself seduced from the path of life, with the quickness of a glance of the mind, I remembered that Jesus died, and that I had died and been buried with him in his sacred institution. This always cured my conscience and gladdened my heart. I ran the race and finished my course. I slept in Jesus; and, lo! I awoke at the sound of the trumpet, and all my deeds came into remembrance, not one of them was forgotten by God. I was found worthy through conformity to that favor which brought me into the fold of God, to approach the tree of life. I have tasted its fruit and feel myself immortal. The contrast between the kingdom of law and the kingdom of favor prepared me to relish and to enjoy the contrast between the kingdom of favor and the kingdom of glory. And when I tell the wondrous story of nature and grace to those my companions who have come from the East and the West, from the North and the South, without circumcision or the proclamation of mercy through the gospel, their devotion in hearing and mine in telling, their joy in me, and my joy in them, swell our strains and raise our bliss to degrees ineffable and full of glory. I have been thrice born -- once of the flesh, once of water and spirit, and once from the grave. Each birth brought me into a congenial society. My fellow-citizens

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always resembled my nativity. I was surrounded once with the children of the flesh, then with those born from above, and now with those born from the ashes of the grave." While proceeding to narrate some things I never before heard, my transports aroused me, but could not fancy again.     EDITOR.


(under construction)

Notes: (forthcoming)


|     No. 1.     | BETHANY, VIRGINIA:
|     Vol. 1.     |
I saw another messenger flying through the midst of heaven, having everlasting good news to proclaim to the inhabitants of the earth, even to every nation, and tribe, and tongue, and people -- saying with a loud voice, Fear God and give glory to him, for the hour of his judgments is come: and worship him who made heaven, and earth, and sea, and the fountains of wisdom. -- John.
Great is the truth and mighty above all things, and will prevail.

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A Certain Mr. Randolph Stone, who edits a "Western Intelligencer, religious, literary, and political," in Hudson, Portage county, Ohio, of which "Intelligencer" I have seen one sheet, of the 15th December, 1829, has written two or three columns on the Prospectus of this work. Whether this worthy brother of the type be a political magician I know not; but he is "a freshman," at least, in the cabalistic school, and seems to find himself on the vantage ground. He knows the magical import of such phrases as the following: "The received doctrines of Christianity;" "the benevolent institutions of the day;" "christian enterprizes which throw so much lustre on this age;" "such men as Edwards, Dwight, Davis, Owen. Newton, Scott, and Chalmers." This is his logic; and his rhetoric is, "Mr. Campbell is chuckling behind the scene to see what fools he has made;" "proclaiming the ancient gospel and the ancient order of things!" which phrases, with his notes of contempt, he repents twelve or thirteen times! And to finish his climax, he says, that the editor of the Harbinger (myself) "will call to his aid the various infidel clubs in New York and Philadelphia as principal contributors." Such are the means to be used by the lovers of the modern gospels, and the present order of things. After many such fine rhetorical touches, as he thought, this champion of orthodoxy represents me as some poor mercenary like himself, who will write whatever will sell, true or false, for a piece of bread and butter. This is about as reasonable an inference from my whole course, from all my history, as the following sentence is true: "Mr. Campbell's proselytes have become considerable numerous, and go from place to place, exploding the old-fashioned way of commencing and continuing a Christian life, by faith and repentance, and a godly conversation, and substituting for it their newly discovered way, which is simply to be baptized." Whom he calls my proselytes I cannot say; but one thing I do say, that I will disown, not only as a proselyte, but as a brother, every man, profess what he may, who will detach baptism from faith, repentance, and a godly behavior. Nor would I rank among the decent, well bred, or courteous citizens of this world, any person who could be guilty of such outrageous calumny and detraction, as this chevalier of orthodoxy.

But as I have always, as a writer, given a fair sample of all that has been written or said against myself, my sentiments, and course, I thought it due to the public, though it appears to me almost a pollution,
of any page to inscribe upon it such flagitious abuse of speech and of the liberty of the press; I Say, I thought it due to the public to instance the case of Mr. Stone in illustration of the course adopted by such as occupy the vantage ground. These gentry are happily exempted from all use, or rather necessity for any use of reason or argument. If they only cry loud and long, "This is the image which fell down from Jupiter!" whom, as Mr. Stone says, "all Asia and the world worship;" or, as he chooses to express it, "the RECEIVED doctrines of Christianity." Yes, "all Asia and the word worship!" These gentry, though living a few thousand miles, and some two thousand years apart, remarkably fraternize in their mode of defending their respective systems. "Great is Diana of the Ephesians!" was the text and is the text. Not so candid, however, are the moderns as the ancients. For they said, "Fellow-craftsmen, you know that by this craft (manufacture) our maintenance arises?" But the moderns, some of them at least, will be the first to impute mercenary motives to them who are successfully shearing them of their power, merely to obtain for themselves the appearance of disinterestedness; when all who know them can perceive and know full well that their only VISIBLE primum mobile is a slice off the popular loaf. Paul said there were some christians in his time whose god was their own stomachs; and these hungry Christians were wont to accuse Paul and Titus of making a gain of them, although by his own hands, in many instances, he had ministered to his own wants and to his fellow-travellers. I intend not to apply this to the "Western Intelligencer," for I know nothing of the man, save the painting he has given of himself; and if he has done justice to the original, he is certainly not among the most lovely of modern Christians. I should not have introduced his name here had he not called upon me to look at him; and even then, I would not have looked off from my purpose, but by the association of ideas I found in him an illustration of that class of belligerents who think they stand upon so lofty an eminence, and have so strong a fortress around them, that a laugh, or a sneer, or a witticism, or a falsehood, or a calumny from them, will put to flight a whole phalanx of arguments, reasons, and proofs. Yes, to say that this is the "received doctrine of Christianity" is sufficient proof that it is true; and to call any thing else novel, or to nickname it heresy is all-sufficient to constitute it error, and to doom it to absolute renunciation by those who stand upon the vantage ground.



Written by Walter Scott, for the Mahoning Association of last year.

Beloved Brethren --

The Christian of the 19th century has been permitted to witness the accomplishment of wonderful events; Providence has stationed him on a sublime eminence, from which he can behold the fulfilment of illustrious prophecies, and look backwards upon nearly the whole train of events leading to the Millennium.

Afar off, and upon the back ground of the picture before him, of wonderful extent, and in all the greatness of imperial ruin, appear the three great empires of Babylon, Persia, and Greece. Nearer to hand lays Rome, eternal Rome! terrible in her origin, terrible in her glory, terrible in her decline and fall! Living and acting through a long series of ages, she approaches the very verge of the present scene of things, till she assumes the distracted form of the ten kingdoms spoken of by Daniel, the remains of which now reel to and fro upon the face of Europe like a drunken man, ready to he ingulphed in the yawning judgments of Almighty God. Sic transit Gloria Mundi. (So passes the glory of the world.)

But from amidst the blaze of her glory, see yet loftier scenes arise -- Behold the kingdom of our Lord Jesus, awaking under the eye of the imperial Cesars; small in its beginning, it rolls forward, it survives all Roman greatness; and that which was yonder, a little stone, is here become a vast mountain, and fills the whole earth; the waters which yonder issued from the threshold of the Lord's house, have here arisen, they have become waters to swim in -- a river that cannot be passed over!

Here, too, are the impostures of Mahomet and the Pope, with temples having the lowermost part consecrated to God -- the upper to the worship of idols. Arrayed in purple and scarlet, decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, behold the apostate church, mounted upon her imperial beast, holds forth to the intoxicated nations a golden cup in her hand, full of abomination and of the filthiness of her fornication; on her fair, but unblushing forehead, is inscribed Mystery -- Babylon the Great -- the Mother of Harlots, and abominations of the earth. She shall be thrown down with the violence of a mill-stone plunged into the midst of the ocean.

Her portentous offspring also, issued to mankind at the mature age of 666, with the head of a Lamb and the heart of a Dragon -- the Inquisition raiseth itself on high, with the power, the delusion, and cruelty, of its parent -- it comes roving o'er the earth, and causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand or in their forehead -- and that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.
Here, also, is the French Atheism, filled with all presumption, and magnifying himself above every God -- he speaketh marvellous things against the true God -- his hands are filled with spears, and his skirts are drenched in blood -- but he shall come to his end, says Daniel, and none shall help him.

All these things, beloved brethren, have passed in review before the christian of the 19th century; but if we have had to witness schemes of policy and superstition, so wild and enthusiastic, and apparently so unfavorable to the true religion, we have seen many things introduced, also highly conducive to its promulgation and reception among mankind -- above all, we have seen the church in America, seated down under a gracious and efficient government, affording her and all men an unprecedented security of life and property -- and if her unity be still a desideratum, we ought to remember that the saints, for nearly 300 years, have been combatting tyranny and superstition, with astonishing success, until those who despise every name and every phrase, not found in the scripture, have become probably by far the most numerous party of professors in the United States. But who would have thought it remained for any so late as 1827, to restore to the world the manner, the primitive manner, of administering to mankind the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ; or which of you, brethren, would have thought, two years ago, of men coming from 40 to 120 miles to the ministers of the Mahoning churches for baptism? Yet these things have actually occured; and who cannot see that, by the blessings of God, the ancient gospel and ancient order of the church, must prevail, to the certain abolition of all those contumacious sects which now so wofully afflict mankind.

Brethren, we have a right to expect great things at the hand of our Father -- if we are united and stand fast, striving together for the faith of the gospel. And be it known to you, brethren, that individuals, eminently skilled in the word of God, the history of the world, and the progress of human improvement, see reason to expect changes much greater than have yet occured, and which shall give to political society, and to the church, a different, a very different complexion from what many anticipate.

The Millennium -- the Millennium described in scripture -- will doubtless be a wonder, a terrible wonder, to ALL.

The gospel, since last year, has been preached, with great success, in Palmyra, Deerfield, Randolph, Shalersville, Nelson, Hiram, &c. &c, by brothers Finch, Hubbard, Ferguson, Bosworth, Hayden, and others. Several new churches have been formed -- and so far as I am enabled to judge, the congregations are in a very flourishing condition; indeed, the preacher of the present day, like the angel of the Revelation, seated on the triumphant cloud, has only to thrust in his sharp sickle in order to reap a rich harvest of souls, and gather it in unto eternal life.

Notes: (forthcoming)


MONDAY,  MARCH 1, 1830.
|   Vol. VII.   |
"Style no man on earth your Father; for he alone is your father who is in heaven; and all ye are brethren. Assume not the title of Rabbi; for you have only one teacher. Neither assume the title of Leader; for you have only one leader -- the Messiah."
Matt. xxiii 8-10.    

"Prove all things: hold fast that which is good."
Paul the Apostle.    
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There is nothing falling into less repute than bulls of excommication and clerical denuciations. They are more wont to gore or sting, as the case may be, the pontiff or the council, than the object, the person, or people whom they anathematize. Yet there are some who cannot deny themselves the pleasure of an anathema, although it should bring vengeance on themselves. They seem to write or issue these bulls as if they were patented or authorized by Moses or Paul to curse whom they please.

The Beaver Association of Pennsylvania took it into her head, if she have any, to anathematize myself and the Mahoning Association. Now the first question is, who gave to the Beaver Association the right to anathematize the Mahming Association? Has she a divine authority to mount the tribunal of judgment and to condemn the faith of another Association? Has not the Mahoning Associatmn the same right to judge, condemn, and anathematize the Beaver Awociation?

But another question, Did the Beaver Association summon to her tribunal the Mahoning Association, and examine her faith and behavior? -- Did she question her, and give her an opportunity to defend herself? Did she summon any witnesses, hear and examine any testimony; or was she herself accuser, judge, jury, and witness in tbe case? Was there ever a more inquisitorial tribunal than that which condemns the faith and christian character of an individual or community without even the forms of trial, and without any institutional authority? Does the constitution of Messiah's kingdom, or of the Baptist church, authorize one individual, or one society, to judge, condemn, and punish another, without trial, witness, or umpire? I venture to affirm that the annals of popery exhibit nothing more tyrannical, more wicked, more cruel, than this act of the Beaver Association.

Two Associations are, in the scale of Associations, to each other, what two churches are to each other in an Association, or two individuals in one church. Such is the Baptist discipline, if they have any. If one individual member of a church has a right to accuse, judge, condemn, and anathematize another, without umpire, testinmny, or any of the forms of trial; then one church has a right to accuse, judge, condemn, and anathematize another church, without umpire, testimony, or any of the forms of trial; then one Association ha a right to accuse, judge, condemn, and anathematize another Association, without any of the forms of
trial. I appeal to every Regular Baptist on the continent, in Europe or in America, if this be not the principle -- if this be not the law of discipline!! Do not Associations stand to Associations -- churches to churches -- just as individuals stand to individuls in one church? Now I care not one pin for the power, or the anthema of one or all the Associations on the continent, but I wish to place this act before the public just in its true colors.

Before I farther expose this act I will narate, as circumstantially as my memory serves, what I believe was the cause of it, in order to show the necessity of trial and examination before condemnation and punishment.

Some few years ago a Mr. Winters (I am sorry that I am compelled to mention his name,) said to be a Regular Baptist preacher from England or Wales, was sent or came from Philadelphia to Pittsburg, in the depth of winter, with a large family, in the most abject circumstances. Brother Sidney Rigdon was then Bishop of the Baptist Church in Pittsburg; and, as a christim Bishop ought to do, he took pity upon his brother Winters; took him into his house, with all his family. say seven or eight children, and sustained them for some weeks, I know not how many; and finally rented, upon his own responsibility, a house for his brother Winters, and stirred up the brethren to minister to his wants. He was also invited into the pulpit and occasionally proclaimed his tenets to the congregation. After he had got warmed and filled he began to make a faction in the church by insinuating that his brother Rigdon was not sound m the faith, (though he had been very round in charity towards him.) He said that the church had departed from the faith once delivered to the Welsh saints, and was no longer built upon tbe foundation of John Gill and Andrew Fuller and the Philadelphia Confession.

By creeping into houses, and leading captive silly women, and some two or three men, he made a faction, amounting, I think, to 12 out of from 80 to 100 members. These Mr. Winters called "the church;" and at the next Association which met in that city an effort was made, which I labored to defeat, to make the twelve the church. Thus I became obnoxious to the wrath and resentment of Mr. Winters and his party. They were defeated at that time. Finally, Mr. Winters left the city and went into the bounds of the Beaver Association. Mr. Rigdon also, some two or three years afterwards, left the city, and went out into the country bordering on the Mahoning Association. Mr. Winters' party fell for a time under the episcopacy of the celebrated pedestrian Lawrence Greatrake, but he and they not being able long to hold on their way, a young man from Somerset, called Mr. Williams, took them under his episcopacy, and he also, instigated by the same faction, wrote a letter to the "Columbia Star," setting forth various libels and slanders against me, for which I called him to an account. He then, and his brother Winters, both joined the Beaver Association; and not unfrequently since have these gentlemen,
especially Mr. Winters, endeavored to sow discord in the neighborng churches. Mr. Winters got into some two or three churches which once belonged to the Mahoning Association, and there played the same game which he played in Pittsburg. One or more of these churches were divided by his instrumentality; and since I left home I learned from the Minutes of the Beaver Association they had joined them. This narrative I know is substantially correct in all its prominent parts, though I write it from my own recollections only. And if pressed, I know I can make it out more fully and circumstantially. But enough is told to show how, and why, this anathema came out in the Minutes of the Beaver Association.

Now had this Association, when about to anathematize the Mahoning, proceeded according to any law, civil or ecclesiastic, and called for witnesses, umpires, and the forms of trial, I doubt not but fhis whole calumny could have been shown to have proceeded from the meanest and most corrupt passions in human nature -- to have been the offspring of neither love to God nor benevolence toward, men. I know so many facts, and I know but few in comparison to what others know whom I have heard speak of these men’s proceedings, that I do most unfeignedly think this whole affair could have been proved in any court, governed by any law, human or divine, to have proceeded from malice and envy. But so it is -- that it comes fourth under the authority of the Beaver Association, and Dr. Noel and his church in Frankfort have it published in the Minutes of the Franklin Association, and if I mistake not, it appeared in the Colmnbian Star, and I know not in how many papers. Even Daniel Parker says he was "favored with the interesting information," and publishes it in his "Church's Advocate," in Vincennes, Indiana! No doubt he felt favored and rejoiced in it; for I have seen so much, read so much, experienced so much of the malignity of sectarian zeal, clerical pride and intolerance, that I am constrained to think that hundreds, if not thousands, would, like Daniel Parker, feel themselves "favored" with the "interesting" information if they could only hear that I had committed some crime worthy of death or of bonds. Now if there was a spark of christian spirit and of christian charity in the author of the modern Manichean doctrine of two seeds, would he rejoice, and feel as if favored of Heaven, when he heard of the anathema of something called the Beaver Association!! This charity rejoices not in the truth, but in iniquity. It is just antipodes to christian charity.

But to return to the Beaver Association and its bull of excommunication. They say that "the Mahoning Association disbelieve and deny many of the doctrines of the Holy Scriptures." Now the question is, Have they examined them -- have they, as an Association, heard the Mahoning Association, declare, as Association, their sentiments? Have the preachers or teachers of the Mahoning Association been arraigned before the bar of their accusers,
and have they been interrogated even by those who assume to themselves to be accuser, witness, and judge in the case? Not at all. It is as perfect a calumny as was ever published, pretending to come from those high places, concerning the spiritual wickedness of which the Apostle speaks. If Satan put it into my head or heart to say that a church or an association of churches, any where in Europe or America, had departed from the faith or denied many "doctrines" of the Holy Scriptures, concerning which churches I knew nothing, it would not be more perfect calumny than this papistical denunciation from Beaver Creek.

Taking the whole anathema together, it is a tissue of falsehoods, and I venture to affirm that not five persons in the Association would think of appearing before the Judge of the living and the dead, and aver that they knew it to be accordant tn fact. Nay, the very man who penned it would find his tongue faltering and his knees smiting, if he were called to account for it in the presence of him who judgeth righteously -- especially if told by the Judge, "With what judgment you judge you shall be judged, and with what measure you mete to others it shall be measured to you again."

But now let me ask what is expected to be gained by this anathema. Do these anathematizes and all who have republished the evil report against the Mahoning Association, expect that this anathema will silence inquiry and prove those who issued it christians? Will it check the progress of free inquiry into tbe Holy Scriptures, or the ancient order of things? -- will it prove any thing but envy and the sectarian zeal, the ignorance, and folly of them who issued it? Did the Pope's anathema against Luther check or accelerate the progress of the Reformation? Did it prove Luther a demon and the Pope a saint? How did it effect Luther's own mind? What was its fate? These questions they ought to have heen able to answer before they put themselves into the Pope's chair and followed his example. Luther burned the Pope’s anathema, and myriads flocked to the standard of the Reformer.

Which of the two associations has been most successful in reforming the world, in converting them to God within the last two years? I ask the question whether has the Beaver or the Mahoning Association been most signalized by heavenly influences? Have not the laborers in the Mahoning Association brought a hundred into the fold for every TEN which the Beaver laborers have baptized.

Poor Joseph, the envy of your brethrn pierced a father's heart with anguish, and sold you a slave into Egypt! They invented many a falsehood to screen themselves from public indignation and cared not for the feelings of a father, telling him that an evil beast had devoured you alive. Long did you feel the heart of a stranger in a foreign land, and many an indignity was
bestowed upon you through the cruel envy of your own brethren. But God was with you in Egypt. He turned your captivity into joy, and they who excommnicated you from a father’s house, and from a father's protection, at last were willing to bow their heads to you, and they and their children and their grand children found peace and plenty under the shade of your protection, and fraternal auspices! Often has your history sustained the virtuous and administered consolation to them who suffered unjustly. If it have sometimes failed to admonish the envious, it never once failed to console and animate those who, for righteousness' sake, have suffered ignominy and reproach. Their envy died -- their falsehoods were detected and refuted; but, Joseph, your virtue and your fame are inmerishable and immortal.

Great have been the exertions of those who published this anathema to cimulate it. It has been sent to all courners of the land. I do not know whether they have sent a copy of it to the autocrat of all the Russias, to the King of England, or to the most Christian magistrates, the kings of Spain and France. I have not heard, it is true, whether his Holiness at St. Peter's Church in Rome has taken ary order upon the subject; or that any of the great Rabbis of the East or the West, with tbe exception of Messrs. Converse and Noel, have made it as canonical as the Maccabees. I have not heard that a splendid copperplate edition of it, with the autographs of the original signers, is yet ordered for the drawing rooms and museums of christendom. But it is whispered that it had no signers at all, and that it is not the act of a majority of that association; but like an advertisement once prefixed to the minutes of the Franklin Association by the publisher, it was the act of but one or two. How this is I know not, nor do I care. One thing I know, that more godly, devout, and faithful men -- men of greater purity of life and disinterestedness of character -- men of more self-denied devotedness to the authority of Jesus Christ, and men of more extensive acquaintance with the revelations of God, I am not acquainted with on this continent, than the members of the Mahoning Association on whom this anathema was intended to act. This, I say, knowing to whom I shall give an account, and I know that my own hand writing will be a witness against me if I should equivocate in this matter. I say moreover, knowing them to be such characters, I know that they are persecuted for righteousness' sake, and, therefore, I do not pity them; because I know him who hath said, "Happy are you when men shall revile you and prosecute you, and say all manner of evd against you falsely for my sake. Rejoice and be exceeding glad, for great is your reward in Heaven; for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you." I will bless the Lord, became he has counted those brethren worthy to suffer shame for his name.

I would apologize for having mentioned the names of Mr. Winters and Williams, had not Paul mentioned Alexander the
Coppersmith; Luke, Demetrius, and his fellow craftsmen; and John, Diotrephas, and many such kindred spirits. I do not do it, but for a warning to others. These men and I have to account to him who judgeth righteously, who will reward them and me according to our works.

But one word more. Who is making divisions and schisms? who is rending the peace of the churches? who are creating factions, swellings, and tumults? We who am willing to bear and forbear, or they who are anathematizing and attempting to excommunicate. Let the umpires decide the question. For my own part I am morally certain they who oppose us are unable to meet us on the Bible; they are unable to meet us before the public; and this I say, not as respects their talents, acquirements or general abilities, but as respects their systems. Thousands are convinced of this, and they might as well bark at the moon as to oppose us by bulls or anathemas. If there be a division, gentlemen, you will make it, not I; and the more you oppose us with the weights of your censure, like the palm tree, we will grow the faster. I am for peace, for union, for harmony, for co-operation with all good men. But I fear you not, if you will fling firebrands, arrows, and discords into the army of the faith you will repent it -- not we. You will lose influence -- not we. We court not persecution, but we disregard it -- we fear nothing but error, and should you proceed to make divisions you will find that they will reach much farther than you are aware, and that the time is past when an anathema, from an association, will produce any other effect than contempt from some, and a smile from others.

Note: See also Campbell's Millennial Harbinger of April 5, 1830 for a continuation of his discussion of the "Beaver Anathema," Rev. John Winter, etc.


|     No. 4.     | BETHANY, VIRGINIA:
MONDAY, APRIL 5, 1830.
|     Vol. 1.     |
I saw another messenger flying through the midst of heaven, having everlasting good news to proclaim to the inhabitants of the earth, even to every nation, and tribe, and tongue, and people -- saying with a loud voice, Fear God and give glory to him, for the hour of his judgments is come: and worship him who made heaven, and earth, and sea, and the fountains of wisdom. -- John.
Great is the truth and mighty above all things, and will prevail.

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WILL sects ever cease? Will a time ever come when all disciples will unite under one Lord, in one faith, in one immersion, in one hope, in one body, in one spirit, and in adoring one God and Father of all? Will divisions ever be healed? Will strife ever cease among the saints on Earth? To these questions all who pray for the millennium, all who long for its. appearance, answer, Yes. How, then, shall the union be accomplished? Will all be converted to any onc sect? Will all become Unitarians Trinitarians, Arians, or Socinians? Will all become Presbyteritins, Baptists, or Methodists? Will all become members of any one of the hundred sects of this century? ...
In the year 1828, when the gospel, as taught by the apostles, was proclaimed with so much power, in the Western Reserve, Ohio, by our brothers Scott, Bentley, Rigdon, and others, some of all sects obeyed it. Among these some Methodist and two Universalist preachers were immersed for the remission of their sins. One of these Universalist preachers appeared at the Mahoning Association, held in Warren, in the month of August, 1829. He was invited to deliver an oration, at an early period of the session of the Association. He did so. Many of the brethren heard him with great pleasure; but some -- remembering that he had. only a few weeks before, proclaimed Universalism, or some species of Restorationism -- could not be altogether reconciled to invite him to a seat, and to treat him as a brother...
We all know that strife is like the bursting forth of water -- it always widens the channels; and many a broil in churches, neighborhoods, and families, would have been prevented if the first indication had been sympathetcally attributed to the infirmity of human nature.



I must again allude to the Beaver Anathema.* (see Christian Baptist, vol. 7. page 183). Once again, and once for all, I will affirm, that, upon me personally this anathema was not at all regarded as inflicting any wound or dishonor. Nay; I rather glory in reproaches, than shrink from them. But seeing that it was designed to prejudice the minds of the uninformed, and seeing that great exertions were making to publish it all over the Union, I thought myself in duty called to expose it, as exhibiting a most unjust caricature of the sentiments and practices of my brethren laboring with me -- and knowing something of the characters of those from whom it emanated, I thought myself called upon to take the notice of it which I have taken in two numbers of the Christian Baptist.

Since the last number of' the Christian Baptist was in type, the Columbian Star brought me, as it often does, some of the lowest scurrility and abuse for what I said concerning Mr. Winter, in the form of a certificate from the First Baptist Church in Pittsburg, signed Wm. U. Hart, Clerk. This certificate purports to be from the whole church, and avers that: "Every particular published by Mr. Campbell in volume 7, page 184, of the Christian Baptist, respecting Mr. Winter, is unqualifiedly false, and without even the shadow of truth to sustain him in his slanders." What a malicious slanderer I must be! But not even a shadow of truth to sustain me!! What an inventor of evil things I must be! This comes, too, from a whole church, recollect, and was signed by -- I was going to say the greatest saint in Pittsburg -- Wm. H. Hart. Concerning this gentleman I will only remind my old readers that he was the confidant, aider, and abettor of Lawrence Greatrake, of calumniating memory. I will not descend farther to particulars. But it is the act of a whole church signed by its clerk, concerning events that happened in the year 1822, before the present First Baptist Church was born. We know, and we admit, that twelve members once legitimately excommunicated from the Regular First Baptist Church in Pittsburgh is the nucleus of this present First Baptist Church. These twelve may have known something about Mr. Winter's arrival in Pittsburg; but how the present First Baptist Church in Pittsburgh, consisting of say some sixty or perhaps more persons, can depose upon such an event, would furnish some intricacies for lawyers and courts, and, however it may pass in an ecclesiastical court, it would not bear much investigation before Caesar's judgment seat. It is presumed that they were unanimous, as was the Beaver Association in their anathema. Such unanimity is very creditable, though its credibility not so indisputable.
But now for the admissions of my statement, concerning Mr. Winter, found in this certificate. Notwithstanding all the generality and universality of its protestations against my statement, it admits every prominent item as respects the arrival of Mr. Winter, and Mr. Rigdon's treatment of him, and Mr. Winter's treatment of the church. There are, at least, seventeen distinct propositions concerning Mr. Winter, in the page alluded to, (page 184. C. B.) Of these, six, or at most seven, are excepted against in the certificate. It is admitted that Mr. Winter came to Pittsburg in the year 1822; it is admitted that brother Rigdon took him and family into his house and sustained them for a time: it is admitted that brother Rigdon introduced him to the church, and invited him to preach; that he afterwards opposed brother Rigdon; that Mr. Winter left the city and removed into the bounds of the Beaver Association; that he divided some churches, &c. &c. All these statements are admitted in the certificate, and some of them proved, by as good testimony as can be found, in the last number of the Christian Baptist. Yet, in direct contradiction of their own admissions, they say that "every one of my statements is false; and that there is not a shadow of truth to sustain them." Now, I ask, is such testimony credible! If persons glaringly contradict themselves who can repose confidence in them!

It is a pleasure to me to reflect that the mistakes concerning the time of the year of Mr. Winter's arrival, and the size of his family, and his landing in Baltimore instead of Philadelphia, were corrected by me in the Christian Baptist, before I saw this certificate in the Star. They were written on the 16th of April, and the Star was issued the 17th in Philadelphia. I had, by associating another family in distress of which I had heard, fallen into a mistake of the size of Mr. Winter's family and the month in which he had arrived in Pittsburg. I have, however, sent in quest of documents concerning the matter which it may be necessary yet to lay before the public. This correction, I say, was made in the Christian Baptist before the certificate appeared. And when it is subtracted from the merits of the whole matter, it leaves the statement I made, as affecting the conduct of Mr. Winter, just where it was. Besides, it has been corroborated since by two witnesses in the Christian Baptist, No. 12, Vol. 7, pages 271 and 272.

Thus in vindicating the Mahoning Association, I was obliged to go into a detail which Mr. Williams or Mr. Hart calls "nefarious," I was obliged to mention the name of Mr. Winter, perhaps providentially; for had I not mentioned his name, in all probability a most outrageous transgressor never would have been detected. Had I not mentioned his name, the following letter, in all probability, never would have appeared in print. had I not fallen into a mistake about the size of his family, and the time of his arrival in Pittsburg, and the port at which he landed, such documents to detect an impostor never would have been furnished. But I think he that ruleth over men, and to whose all-seeing eye all things are naked and manifest, has designed to give another lesson to this generation, that men may
be very orthodox, and make much noise about error in doctrine, and denounce reformation, and yet be like whited sepulchres, full of rottenness and corruption.

If the following letter suit not the individual mentioned, it will be easy to show it does not; and if it do not, it will be necessary that the public be in possession of it to guard them against imposition. The following is an attested copy of a letter from a christian in Liverpool to the Rev. Dr. Glendy, of Baltimore, touching an impostor in this country. The publication of the Beaver Anathema brought it to me from an authentic source. It speaks for itself: --

                                        "LIVERPOOL, 15th June, 1822.
"Rev. Mr. Glendy -- Baltimore --
Sir -- At the recommendation of our mutual friend, Mr. Cather of this place, I make free to inform you of a circumstance which has inflicted a deep wound on the cause of religion in the North of England, by one whose professions, education, and general character, had recommended him to a pretty general acquaintance as one of its advocates.

"A Mr. Winter, formerly a student in the respectable Baptist Academy, Yorkshire, and (probably 10 months since) ordained Pastor over a newly formed Baptist Church at North Or South Shields, near New Castle, had made himself acceptable as a preacher: a new place of worship had been erected; subscriptions to a considerable amount obtained for payment of the expenses; and Mr. W. had gone on a tour for 5 weeks -- in order to obtain enough to discharge the remt. of the sum, when his friends learnt, to their unspeakable suprize and grief, that he had eloped with a young married woman, a member of his church; and that they were on the point of embarking for the United States. I have since learnt that they shipped themselves for Baltimore, taking an infant with them, suspected to be the fruit of a former illicit connexion between them) and I rather think, (though I cannot immediately ascertain the fact) on the 12th April, in the Newburyport, Captain Goodrich, from this port.

"The object of these lines will now explain itself. Mr. Winter (who embarked I understand, with this woman, in the names of Mr. and Mrs. Winter of Kidderminster) is personally unknown to me: but his conduct has done already abundant injury to the cause he has betrayed, and I am anxious that the same cause should not be further wounded, when I have the opportunity of honorably warding off the blow. You are perhaps already aware that your country has often been reproached here with receiving as ministers of the gospel the outcasts of our society. I should, indeed, be grieved could I think there were any just ground for the charge. That such men have been improperly received at times, I have good reason to think; but it is not always easy to detect hypocrisy, or we ourselves should not have been, as in this instance, the dupes of designing villainy. It behooves us mutually to avoid the extremes of familiarity, but in a people given to hospitality," as yours is, the
latter is perhaps likely to be the more prevailing fault, and an immoral ministry is perhaps as great a curse as can be inflicted upon us, and therefore ought to be regarded with a very jealous eye.

"I need make no apology, sir, for this freedom -- a good design needs none. I know no one in Baltimore but Drs. Mason formerly of New York, and Romeyn of that place, as well as several other clergymen there; and in particular among my lay friends there Mr. Divie Bethune or Mr. Benjamin Marshall can inform you what weight is due to my representation.

"I leave it to your discretion what use to make of it -- and am very respectfully, sir, your obdt servt,
                              "SAM HOPE."

I heard of a preacher -- nay, I know one in this country who was the most denouncing against Arminians: he was an orthodox ReguIar, of flaming zeal. He was convicted before a part of the public of a crime not to be named; and yet his church sustained him, because of his orthodoxy, and I believe he yet "preaches" to the church; but the world will not hear him. It is the misfortune of all societies to have sometimes wolves amongst them -- lions and tigers too, think Paul calls Alexander the coppersmith a lion in sheep's cloathing. But to sustain any man, acting immorally, because of the doctrine "once in grace always in grace," or because of his orthodoxy, is as bad as to suffer that woman Jezabel to seduce to the basest crimes those who profess godliness. The reader is reminded that the certificate above alluded to came from the "lovers of truth and righteousness." We shall look for the proof. As yet it is in word only. They will find when they make another experiment, that Solomon's proverb is yet true -- "The wicked flee when no man pursues them, but the righteous are as bold us a lion."

Notes: (forthcoming)


MONDAY,  JULY 5, 1830.
|   Vol. VII.   |
"Style no man on earth your Father; for he alone is your father who is in heaven; and all ye are brethren. Assume not the title of Rabbi; for you have only one teacher. Neither assume the title of Leader; for you have only one leader -- the Messiah."
Matt. xxiii 8-10.    

"Prove all things: hold fast that which is good."
Paul the Apostle.    
[292 - reprint pagination]


Concerning those four churches, said to belong to the Mahoning Association which are represented in the Beaver Minutes as having left their former connexion, because of "damnable heresy," I solicited information from brother Walter Scott, who has been the active agent of one of the most important revolutions and conversions in the present day, as far as has come to my ears. He favored me with the following hasty sketch which will throw some light upon the Beaver anathema.   Ed. C. B.

New Lisbon, April 9th, 1830.
Brother Campbell,
The following are the particulars which I have learnt and know of the four churches.


About eight or nine years ago there was a revival within the bounds of the church; the acting minister was brother Woodsworth, a Regular Baptist. There was a great stir, and many were baptized in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Mr. West, I believe, then lived in Nelson; but some of the members conceiving a partiality for him, he was elected Minister of the Youngstown Church to the rejection and dismissal of brother Woodsworth, the successful laborer. Affairs began to put on a different aspect immediately -- the church declined from that day -- conversions stopped, and after the lapse of some years the meeting was embroiled in family quarrels -- Mr. West himself being grossly implicated.

When I called about two years ago, I found the church in a state of entire prostration. For four years they had not eaten the Lord's Supper; all was delinquency -- a perfect web of wickedness, the like of which I never had seen. It was an involved labyrinth of personal and family quarrels.

For about three weeks I strove to disentangle the sincere hearted, but in vain. Strife is like the lettings out of water -- what is spilt is lost. When the threads and filaments of a quarrel have forced themselves like waves over the whole body ecclesiastic, that body should be dissolved.

We accordingly looked upon this institution to be entirely lost, and began to preach the ancient gospel -- the word of the Lord is a hammer and a fire. All hearts were immediately broken or burnt; and of that sinful people there have been immersed nearly 150 individuals. These have become a church, and are walking in the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless,
as I hope. The scriptures are their sole authority, and they have three bishops bold in the Lord Jesus, and five deacons.

All those who could not, should not, or would not join the young converts, to the amount of about sixteen, styled themselves the Church of Youngstown, and went to the Beaver Association to aid in the framing of that enormous bull which has excommunicated our name from the list of the Baptist Associations in the United States. Be it observed, however, that nothing said here is to be construed evilly in regard to the sixteen members -- I believe them to be misguided Christians. They are eleven, or at most sixteen -- the disciples we baptized are about 150.


About a year after I had been in Youngstown, I went to Palmyra, in company with brother Hayden, a faithful laborer in Jesus Christ. Here too all was worse than decay -- 'twas ruin all. The Methodist class was a desolation strewed over the town -- a race of backsliders. I talked with many of them, and their quondam class leader was the first person who was immersed -- a man who had maintained his purity amid the general delinquency -- he stood like Lot in Sodom. The Baptist meeting, like Sardis, engrossed a few names, and but a few who had not defiled themselves; but as at Youngstown, so here also, the church was filled with creeds, swellings, and personal and family quarrels.

We forthwith read the gospel from the sacred page, and exhorted to obedience, whereupon many believing were baptized in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. We afterwards separated the young converts, and informed the old folks that so many of them as choosed to embrace the new institution, would be admitted with all pleasure nearly all of them united, and the church now includes about 100 names.

They break bread every first day, have the scriptures for their sole authority, the settlement of their differences is attended to promptly, (Matt. xviii.) and not deferred till a monthly meeting -- they have none -- they are very lively, and have overseers and servants.

But here again, as at Youngstown, fifteen, or at most 20, although I suppose only eleven went off, betook themselves to their old ways of creeds, monthly meetings., &c. -- called themselves Palmyra Church, of course, and joined the Beaver Association.


This used to be a flourishing church. The causes of its decay are more easily conjectured than detailed. Mr. Winters used to visit it about two years ago, and aided in the ejectment of some of its best and liveliest members who have since been associated as a church in St. Clair township -- since that occurred, Judge Brown, a pillar in the Anchor Church, has deceased, and the remaining members have been laboring by means of divers ministers
to resuscitate matters. I was told that Mr. West preached there last Lord's day, and baptized one convert. I visited the church about two years ago, but felt so much hurt by their indelicate behavior that I would not preach, and retired from their meeting house -- since that I have heard but little about them.


In one place where I was baptizing, just as I raised the baptized person up out of the water, I saw a great stick hanging or rather shaking over my head. On another occasion I was interrupted by a person with a sword cane -- at one place they set loose my mare in the night, and at Noblestown in the midst of six Presbyterian congregations the sectarian population cut of all the hair from her tail; but in no place did I ever experience such deceitful treatment as at Salem. According to my appointment I visited this church soon after I began to ride. The brethren received me with seeming courtesy, and I began to speak. The ancient gospel had set straight in my mind things which were formerly crooked. I felt my soul enlarged; the Lord had opened my eyes, and filled my mouth with arguments. I was all transported with the gospel -- its novelty, its power, its point, its glory. Accordingly I rushed upon the sinful people like an armed man -- forty-one were immersed in ten days, and all seemed to rejoice with me in the victory; but we had to wait until monthly meeting before we could propose the young converts for admission. As this was two or three weeks in the future, those who were secretly or openly opposed to the proceedings had abundance of time to put into requisition all the little arts which they supposed would be necessary to keep out so many of the young converts as they thought unconverted: so many of God's children as they thought had not been born aright the second time. The meeting came round and none of them were admitted, yet they were many of them their own children, and nearly all of them related either immediately or remotely with the members of the church.

Creeds, confessions, and experiences, were sine qua nons with a few of the old folks, and particularly with one woman, so that we separated without doing any thing but disgusting the new converts; but I had to leave the place for five weeks, there being revivals in New Lisbon, Warren, Braceville, and Windham, all at the same time. In my absence twenty-one of the converts were cajoled into the church; the rest have since been formed into a meeting three miles south of Salem, and are likely to do well. At my return to Salem I was requested to be absent for a little, until things became settled, and finally had word sent not to return. Thus a people who would have plucked out their own eyes, and given them to me, did all of a sudden turn round and separate me from their own relations and townsmen, whom under God, I had been the means of bringing back to the Lord, and to righteousness. I never spoke to all the converts again.

To the Editor of fhe Christian Baptist.

Armstrong County, Pa. 1830.    
Dear Brother,

You cannot conceive with what regret I read your notice of the scandalous anathema of the Beaver Association. Your long silence on the same had partly persuaded me you did not think it worth your notice. As far as I could learn (for I was not at the tribunal) there were two or three disaffected little churches in the Mahoning Association, near the village of Youngstown, with their leaders, applied for admission into this Association, Their names are, I think, William West and _____ M'Kelvey, who, with our friend Williams of Pittsburg, carried the Association so far as to get their scurrilous anathema brought into existence under the cloak of the Beaver Baptist Association. Thus you see it altogether arose from three self-centered philanthropists, or would-be worshiped clergymen; and I am really sorry that it has given you the least uneasiness; but these are "the little foxes that eat the tender vines!"

You am right enough as respects Mr. Winters. He is spreading defamations against you through this little Association in every way he can possibly devise, making use of scurrilous and unchristian language. I myself hewd him say you were worse than the Devil, and that he would rather fellowship with the Devil than with Alexander Campbell. By which means, and travelling through the small churches preaching and warning the people against you, he has got them to think you are really a dangerous man and ought to be guarded against. I myself, by his influence, thought you a dangerous man, until, by accident, a number of your valuable Christian Baptist fell into my hands, which I read with such pleasure that I immediately became a subscriber, and have read every numnber from the commencement of the second volume to the present time, and can truly say, that, next to the Scriptues, I have received more pleasure from them than any thing I ever read; and I hope, dear sir, that God will spare your valuable life until you make them, and all other of his enemies, ashamed of "perverting the right ways of the Lord.       R.

Since my notice of the Beaver Anathema I have learned that I was misinformed in some statements concerning Mr. Winter. I hasten to correct them. His name is Winter, not Winters. In the second place his family was quite small when he came to Pittsburg. In the third place he is said to have landed at Baltimore in the year 1822, and commenced his tour in tbe United States from that port. These corrections I make lest they should mislead as to the person intended. -- Ed. C. B.

Notes: (forthcoming)


|     No. 9.     | BETHANY, VIRGINIA:
|     Vol. 1.     |

[389 - reprint pagination]

[Continued from page 348.]

June 23d. A little past 12 o'clock A. M. arrived at [Fairport?] where, being informed that it was only eight miles to Judge C[lapp]. to whom I had a letter of introduction, concluded to stop here -- got to Judge C's about dark -- was welcomed with much christian kindness. Judge C. and wife had been Baptist professors for many years: but
now, with seven children, they are members of the new church, set in order in that place by Bishop S. R[igdon] They tell me much of the reformation effected in these parts by the proclamation of the gospel -- of a happy three days' meeting of disciples, which dissolved on Monday last, K[irtland?]. Present many who had been converted from different sects -- several teachers -- among whom were Brother Williams, formerly a Universalist, Brothers Allton and Church, Christians; Brother Curtis, a Methodist; Brothers Bentley, Collins, Porter, Rigdon, and Barr, Regular Baptists; but now, all united on the one foundation, having been all immersed by one immersion into the one faith of the gospel. Including these I am informed, that no less than TWENTY PUBLIC TEACHERS of different denominations, on the Reserve, have, within three years, renounced their respective isms, and become one in Christ Jesus. At this. meeting, nine new disciples were added, and one old one made over from the Baptists; some of whom were immersed after 11 o'clock at night. Sister C. gave me a very interesting account of brother Vaughn, a young Methodist preacher, who had been discipled by Bishop A. C. His subsequent proclamation of the gospel, persecution, trial and expulsion, by his quondam brethren.

June 24th. Was introduced by Brother C. to Bishop R[igdon] with whom I had a very agreeable visit. He tells me, that within two years past, he has immersed about 100 persons, constituted 15 or 20 churches, and rebaptized some, to answer a good conscience, who had been previously immersed; but of these a few. Sister C. says, she thinks that the disciples have an advantage over the sectarians, in being free to examine the scriptures for themselves -- that they do not consider themselves perfect; and therefore are continually seeking for more light. P. M. visited Brother Collins -- I had a long and interesting interview with him.

June 26th. Read a part of No. II. vol. I. "Christian Evidences, by Aylett Rains." From which thc following are extracts: --

"At the Mahoning Association, about five months after my immersion, I was publicly questioned relative to my sentiments; and from a bench on which I stood, I did not hesitate to declare to the whole congregation, that it was still my opinion that all men would finally become holy and happy. This fact can be proved by scores of witnesses.

"I shall never, as long as I retain my mcmory, forget the magnanimity of Messrs. Campbells and Scott, and several others, exhibited on this occasion. They acted as men of noble minds, highly elevated above the paltry bickerings of speculative partizans; for though they considered my Restorationist sentiments as a vagary of my brain, they did not treat me with contempt, as bigots would have done; but with meekness and kindness encouraged me to persevere in the christian race. And Alexander Campbell, also, invited me to pay him a visit at his own house, in order that he might have opportunity to convince me that the doctrine of Universal Restoration is not taught in the scriptures.
"The fact is, that from the period of my embracing the primitive "form of sound words," I was reso]ved to take no position on any doctrinal point, far removed from that centre which is the grand attractive of Christianity. I stood therefore on gospel facts, and taught the unequivocal testimomes of Christ and his Apostles concerning thesc facts, requiring all who had ears to hear to submit unreservedly to the commands of Jesus, and thereby obtain all the rewards which are promised to the obedient, and shun those evils, whatever they might be, which are consequent on disobedience.

"Thus did I reason; and thus have I lahored for the welfare of mankind; and I thank God, that my labor has not been in vain. I have seen men, who were philosophically Calvinists, and Arminians, and Restorationists, members of the same congregation, and sitting around the same table of the Lord; and in the joyful fervors of the same christian love, attracted by the one cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, praising God in concert, and there were no divisions among them! O, what a sight was this! How noble an object to be sought! My soul takes fire while I write, and as the flame increases, resolution on resolution arises, that while life shall last, I will never let go my hold of this gospel, which so happily terminates in such exquisite peace and good will to men!

"I have long enough been tosed about on the billows of the ocean of error! I have found a foundation of facts; -- facts more permanent than the foundations of the Andes or the Allegany. I am resolved here to abide. Here I have terminated my zigzag journey from Babylon to Jerusalem. Here, at the foot of the cross, I have laid my burden: and here until mortal life shall cease, I will stand, and contemplate the wonders of redeeming love. Gospel facts are immutable things; like the rock of ages, they never move! Human opinions and imaginations may undergo their daily mutations -- may sink into oblivion, and be known no more at all; but these facts can never change."

Between 2 and 3 o'clock P. M. bade brother Collins good bye, and returned to M[entor]. Spent the evening till 10 o'clock at Bishop R.'s He now began and gave me a history of the reformation, and of the actors in it from the commencement.  *  *  *

Lord's day June 27th. was introduced to Father J. B. who, for many years, had been a Methodist preacher, and who, about a year since, obeyed the gospel. Attended worship with the disciples in M. their meeting-house is a plain, one story, brick building, 52 by 42 feet, furnished with seats. The males on one side, and the females on the other. While the assembly were coming in, several hymns were sung. At length Bishop R. arose -- read John xv. ch. and prayed. Another hymn was sang -- Bishop R. then, after making some introductory remarks, named for his subject, obedience. He exhibited Jesus as the Lord of Lords and King of Kings -- considered the gospel as addressed to all without exception, who hear it; and enforced its exhortations with the promise of life and salvation. His
discourse was one hour and three quarters in length; at the close of which, he said "If there be any here present, who wish to obey the gospel, they will come forward while we are singing a hymn." Two sisters came forward -- one a married lady, the other about 14 years of age. After a short prayer, Bishop R. said; "We will now repair immediately to the water." At the water, on the candidates presenting themselves, he addressed them thus: "Do you believe with all your heart, that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God?" They answered, "I do." Then taking each by the hand, they went down both into the water, when, saying -- "By the authority of Jesus Christ, for the remission of your sins, I immerse you into the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit" -- he immersed them. On returning to the meeting-house, about one hundred disciples sat down to the table of the Lord, (which is their weekly practice) and commemorated his dying love. Traveller joined with them. During this exercise, they sung several hymns and spiritual songs. None seemed sad -- none wore other than a cheerful countenance -- never before, as now, was the exhortation of the Apostlc so much impressed upon my mind: -- "Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say rejoice."

But here, in copying, I break short off, to address my Baptist brethren from another place.  *  *  *

My Dear Friends, I am a Baptist, the son of a Baptist. For more than fourteen years, I have been numbered with you; and now I am as truly one o you, as was Paul a Pharisee, when he stood before the Sanhedrim at Jerusalem, subsequent to his conversion to Christianity, and declared himself a Pharisee. He then believed in the resurrection of the dead, the great doctrine which divided the Jews into Pharisees and Sadducees. So do I believe in the immersion only of believers, upon a profession of faith, the great doctrine which now divides christendom into Baptists and Paedobaplists. But, as Paul was at that time something more than a Pharisee -- a Christian; so do I hope, now am I. I believe not only in immersion, as an act of obedience to Christ; but in immersion into the name of the Holies, for the remission of sins, and for thc gift of the Holy Spirit. I now see, or think I see, more in this sacred institution than I at first saw. I see in it a gracious pledge of pardon to the obedient. Yes, I now believe in immersion for the remission of sins. This is one Of the "points," on which, seventeen months ago, I was unsettled -- which I wished "to investigate impartially and thoroughly; that I might ascertain, and embrace, and practise, and inculcate, the whole truth upon it." And, believe me, brethren, my present views are the result of such an investigation. My first, and last, and great work of appeal, in this matter, has been the New Testament scriptures. I have sat down to them, and made them my study from morning till night. I have sought for the truth as for hid treasures prized it
more than silver and gold; and I feel assured, that I have found it -- at least, on one of the first principles of the doctrine of Christ -- on baptism. Seeing now, in a believing immersion the oath and promise of Him who cannot lie, of pardon and the Holy Spirit; all my former darkness, doubts, and despondency, have vanished away; and I rejoice in God my Saviour with joy unspeakable, and full of glory. And will you not rejoice with me? Will you not also yourselves believe, and enjoy this blessedness?
I must here give another extract from my Journal.

June 30th. "Disciples," yes; this is the name by which they call one another. "The congregation of disciples in M. in W., in N. L." &c. They speak of obeying the gospel -- of obeying it, by being immersed for the remission of their sins. Yes; and they are, indeed, disciples -- disciples of Christ. They have learned of Him to love one another. For one week that I have been among them, I have sung more, and heard more singing, than in a month before. Yes; disciples of Christ! They own no other master, and to call them by the name of any man is to calumniate them. In no one family did 1 find a complete set of the works of A. C. and in most of those I visited, not a single volume of his, beside his hymn-book. Brother Collins, "the Campbellite" owned only this; and yet, I observed in his library a complete set of the works of Andrew Fuller!! These, sister C. informed me, he had read a great deal more than the works of A. C. Query -- Why not rather call him a Fullerite? But, no; -- the NEW TESTAMENT is now his Confession of Faith. Show me your faith, by your Philadelphia Confession, by your contentions for orthodoxy, by your Papal anathemas against you know not what; and I will show you their faith, by their works.

On carrying some corn and other provisions to a poor woman in our neighborhood, who was very much prejudiced against us," said Brother M. "she wondered what it meant." "We are taught to do thus by our religion," he replied. ==> Brother M[atthew?] was the first who obeyed the gospel in K[irtland] in the month of September, 1827.

In the month of March last, Brother T. C. addressing the congregation at E. on loving, not only in word and in tongue; but in deed, and in truth -- observed, "We should not say to our brothers, Be ye warmed, and be ye fed, without giving them those things which are necessary for them." Another Brother M. arose and said, "the doctrine is good;" and inquired, whether the disciples knew of anyone among them, to whose necessities they might administer. A sister D. was named, of the Methodist church. The very next day Brother M. for his part, sent the flour of a bushel of wheat, some dried peaches, &c, ==> This Brother M. was the first, who arose to obey the gospel in E. after it had been faithfully proclaimed there by Bishop R. The same evening several others arose; among whom were the wife of Brother M. then a Presbyterian, and two of the children of Dr. D. Brother M. previous to this, was a frequent reviler of the Bible, and of those who believed in it.

The next morning after these eight were discipled, just before
Bishop R. left the place, he turned to Dr. D. (then in connexion with the Regular Baptists) and said; "Will you not go with them; or will you abandon them to go alone?" -- "I will go with them," said he: and from that time, he has been numbered with the disciples. ==> This Dr. D. was so much exercised when his sectarian shackles began to break, when introduced into the liberty of the gospel, that he could not sleep -- after retiring to bed, he got up and read his Bible, and sung, and prayed one whole night. ==> This Dr. D. the last year subscribed $20 towards the support of the Baptist minister in E. which, he says, (though he has but a few times heard him, and the minister has not since visited his house;) he means to pay. He thinks of visiting the minister, and of carrying the pay to him.

Soon after the last of Judge C's children obeyed the gospel, Bishop R. being apprized that he had indulged many fears of this way; turned to him and asked: "What he thought of it." He burst into tears and replied, "Who am I that I should withstand God?" Judge C. also, is now numbered with the disciples.

There is, indeed, a charm and a power in the ancient gospel, which they (who oppose it) know not of. It is producing wonders. Churches are springing up like corn all over the country by its influences. Since writing the above, I have myself seen a Methodist minister submit to the yoke of Jesus who went home in his wet clothes, not having calculated to be immersed when he came to the place of hearing. On the same day, an elder, also, of high standing in the Presbyterian church ; and subsequently, several others, both and male female. But believe not merely on human testimony; call no man master; take nothing upon trust; believe Christ, believe Peter, believe Paul.

At some future day I may give further extracts from my Journal; in the mean while, hear a Doctor: "Take heed to yourselves what you are about to do. With regard to the present affairs, I say unto you refrain from these men, and let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will moulder away; but if it be of God, you cannot overthrow it."
Bethany, July 24th, 1830.



The Jews will, in their unconverted state, actually and literally return to their own land before Jesus Christ appears to destroy the Man of Sin by the glory or power of his coming. So reads the first of the four propositions submitted in our last; to the proof of which we now advance, with this single preliminary, that we shall, in due order, show, 1st. That the Jews will return. 2d. That they will return in an unconverted state.

1st. The Jews will actually and literally return to their own land. To feel the full force of the many things which we have got to say in support of this part of our proposition, the reader must indulge us with a hearing, while we state to him, from Scripture, the dismemberment. of the Jewish nation at the accession of Rehoboam to the throne of his father Solomon, about the year of the world 3000. On this subject we are informed (1 Kings, xi 29.) that Jeroboam, a servant to Solomon and a man of valor, rebelled against the King: "And it came to pass at that time, when Jeroboam went out of Jerusalem, that the Prophet Ahijah the Shilonite met him on the way; and he had clad himself with a new garment: and they two were alone in the field. And Ahijah caught the new garment that was on him, and rent it in twelve pieces; and he said to Jeroboam take thee ten pieces, for thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Behold I will rend the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon, and will give thee ten tribes: but he shall have one tribe for my servant David's sake, and for Jerusalem's sake, the city which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel." All this came to pass in the days of Rehoboam; for Jeroboam having returned from Egypt, whither he had been driven by Solomon, "it camc to pass when all Israel heard that Jeroboam was come again, that they sent and called him unto the congregation, and made him King over all Israel. There was none that followed the house of David but the tribe of Judah." 1 Kings, xii. 20. So Jeroboam reigned at Schechem, in Mount Ephraim, over the ten tribes, and Rehoboam at Jerusalem over Judah and Benjamin. "And there was war between Jeroboam and Rehoboam a!l the days of his life." xv. 6.

Jeroboam, however, proved himself wholly unworthy of the rank to which the Most High exalted him; and his reign, with all that followed, was distinguished for the most unheard-of profligacy and idolatry, until the elevation of Hoshea, son of Elah, when God sent against the ten tribes Shalmaneser, king of Assyria, who took their capital, Samaria, "and carried away to Assyria all Israel, and placed them in (the towns of) Halah and Habor by the river Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes;" from whence, as is allowed on all hands, they never returned into their own land. But that they will yet return we shall now show by many distinct prophecies: and first we shall begin with Hoshea, who predicted the captivity of the ten tribes long before it occurred, as he has also foretold their restoration to the land of their fathers in the latter days. iii. 4. "For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince;
and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and without a teraphim. Afterward shall the children of Israel return and seek the Lord their God and David their king, and shall fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter days."

Jeremiah who lived after the dispersion of the ten tribes, which were usually styled "Israel," predicts their return thus: (ch. iii. 12.) "Go and proclaim these words towards the North, and say, Return thou backsliding Israel, saith the Lord, and I will not cause my anger to fall upon you; for I am merciful, saith the Lord, and will not keep anger for ever; only acknowledge thine iniquity that thou hast transgressed against the Lord thy God, and hast scattered thy ways to the strangers under every green tree; and you have not obeyed my voice, saith the Lord. Turn, O backsliding children, saith the Lord, for I am married unto you; and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion. And I will give you pastors according to my heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding. And it shall come to pass, when you be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days, saith the Lord, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the Lord: neither shall it come to mind; neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more. At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the Lord: and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the Lord, to Jerusalem; neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart. In those days the house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel, and they shall come together out of the land of the north to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers." Chap. xvi. 14. "Therefore, behold the days come, saith the Lord, that it shall no more be said, The Lord liveth that brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; but, The Lord liveth that brought up the children of Israel out of the land of the north, and from all lands whither he had driven them; and I will bring them again into their land which I gave unto their fathers!" (Sec also 23d, 30th, 31st, 32d: and 33d chapters of the same prophecies.)

The manner of their return is is made known to us by Hoshea: "Then shall the children of Judah and the children of Israel be gathered together, and appoint themselves one head, and they shall come up out of the land; for great shall be the day of. Jezreel." (See also chapters 2d, 3d, and 13th of this Prophet.) The Lord says by Ezekiel, "Behold I, even I will both search my sheep and seek them out." ch. xxxiv. 11. (Sse also chapters 11, 16, 20, 29, 36, and 37, where the unity of the two houses of Judah and Israel is predicted as follows: "And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel, and one king shall be king to thcm all, and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any morc at all." But it may be asked, where are they to be found, for men have searched the most remarkable portions of the earth for them in vain? Jeremiah relieves us from all difficulty here; for although hid from human sight, they arc not beyond the reach of
God's eye. "For," saus he, "mine eyes arc upon all their ways, they are not hid from my sight, neither is their iniquities hid from mine eyes." Chap. xvi. verse 16. "Beho]d I will send for many fishers, saith the Lord, and they shall fish them; and after will I send for many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain, and from every hill, and out of the holes of the rocks." From this last expression it is possible the ten tribes are now in some of the high and yet unexplored table lands of central and northern Asia, or they may be the American Indians; at all events, there are many portions of this globe the geography of which is but inadequatly understood. Let Infidelity look to this, and be afraid; let Scepticism and Atheism hide their diminished heads when the Lord does this great miracle before men. Who but God could have kept a nation from coming to an end after such a prostration of every thing national? But it is written by the Eternal, "Fear not, O my servant Jacob! saith the Lord; neither be dismayed, O Israel! for, lo! I will save thee from afar, and thy seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and be in rest, and be quiet, and none shall make him afraid." Where are the Assyrians, the ancient Greeks, the Romans, the Carthagenians, the Sidonians? They perished with the loss of their nationality; but of the Jews it is said, and it has been verified, "Though I make a full end of all nations whither I have scattered thee, yet will I not make a full end of thee." Talk not about their long-protracted dispersion. With the Eternal one day is as a thousand, and a thousand years as one day. For "thus saith the Lord who giveth the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and stars for a light by night, who divideth the sea when the waves thereof roar; the Lord of Hosts is his name: If these ordinances depart from before me: saith the Lord, then the seed of Israel shall cease from being a nation before me for ever. Thus saith the Lord, If heaven above can be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off the seed of Israel for all that they have done, saith the Lord." ch. xxxi. 35. The Most High will yet terribly convulse the unbelieving world, and those who presumptuously in christendom have cast off the yoke of Messiah, and have denied God; yea, and "all the heathen shall know that the house of Israel went into captivity for their iniquity, because they trespassed against me; therefore hid I my face from them, and gave them into the hands of their enemies." Ezek. xxxix. 23, Many grand things shall occur when God shall have done this, as will be shown in due time; but we must not anticipate. However, take this single bunch of grapes, O reader! as an antepast of the feast of fat things to come -- of wines on the lees -- of wines on the lees well refined. "Thus saith the Lord of Hosts, It shall yet come to pass, that there shall come people and the inhabitants of many cities; and the inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, "Let us go speedily to pray before the Lord, and to seek the Lord of Hosts; I will go also. Yea, many people and strong nations shall come to seek the Lord of Hosts in Jerusalem, and to pray before the Lord, Thus saith the Lord
of Hosts, In those days it shall come to pass, that ten men out of all languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you, for we have heard that God is with you." Zech. viii. 20. (See also chapters lst, 2d, 4th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, and 14th of the same prophecy.) Malachi, Zechariah, and Haggai prophecied after the two tribes had returned from Babylon, and the Apostle Paul quotes the last, to prove that one, and only one more great revolution shall take place in favor of the true religion: "Yet once more I shake not only the earth, but also heaven." So much For the first part of our proposition, viz. that the Jews will actually and literally return to their own land; the proof of which we close by a single quotation from Amos, who, it is supposed, was contemporary with Hoshea, and who, after predicting their dispersion and their preservation in that state, ends his prophecy with these words, "I will bring again the captivity of my people Israel, and they shall build the waste cities and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit thereof; and I will plant them upon their own land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of the land which I have given them, saith the Lord thy God."

The second part of our proposition is, that they shall return to their own land in an unconverted state. It was noticed in the public journals some time ago that the celebrated Irving and sundry others of the London preachers had come out on this side, and that the public declaration of their sentiments had taken very sensible effect on the friends of the London Missionary Society for converting the Jews; many, if not all of the Dukes, Marquises: Earls, Lords: Viscounts, Esquires, and Gentlemen of the Realm, haliug withdrawn their subscriptions. Of the Prophets who have spoken of the restoration of the Temple service, Ezekiel is the one who has been most minute; for he describes particularly the form and size of the Temple, the duties of the Priesthood; the daily, weekly, and annual services; the Prince's offering, with the feasts, fasts, tithing, &c. &c. and terminates his prophecy by a detailed account of the new and beautifui manner in which the land of Canaan is to bc laid out in parallel strips, running from the Mediterranean sea back to the river Jordan. The Jews never have been located in their land in the manner described by this Prophet. (See chapters 45th, 47th, and 48th.) Ezekiel says that the name of their city from that day shall be "the Lord is there;" but how, indeed, should any one hope to see the Jews converted before their return to Judea, when even now we know not where the mass of them exists; the tribes of Judah and Benjamin are, indeed, found in all the trading ports of Europe, Asia, and America; but instead of looking towards the christian religion with any favor, they abhor it and all its professors, and are even now many of them setting their faces towards Jerusalem and the land of their fathers. The following notice of this has run the rounds of the English and American Journals.

"A letter from Mr. Wolff, the celebrated missionary to the Jews, dated Cyprus, July 15, states that when he was at Jaffa last summer,
about one hundred Jews, chiefly old men and women, arrived at that place, from Constantinople, on their way to Jerusalem, where they were going to remain until death." A gentleman of equal respectability, writing from Constantinople more recently, says, that he "heard of a great number of ships being hired by the Jews to convey them to Jerusalem. He found they were going in expectation of the near coming of their Messiah. He adds that thousands of families were preparing to embark from all quarters." Another letter from the south of Europc, dated last November, confirms these statements, and adds that "their expectations of the Messiah is the reason openly given;" at all events, it is certain that great numbers have actually embarked, whatever may be the motive that has influenced them.

That they will remain unconverted until the Saviour comes to open their eyes, is noticcd by the Apostle, Rom. xi. 25. "For I would not have you ignorant, brethren, of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own conceits, that blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in, and so all Israel shall be saved, as it is written, "There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob." It would appear from this that Jesus personally is to turn away ungodliness from the Jewish nation. "This is my covenant with them when I shall take away their sins."

These are a few of the proofs which go to sustain our first proposition. When the second comes upon the carpet, they will be more felt and better understood by the reader, to whom this development may be altogether new.


This Association held its last meeting in Austintown, Trumbull County, Ohio. Such has been the efficiency of the gospel in the district of country over which the churches of this Association are spread, that it has caused to wither almost every sectarianism within and without the congregation composing it. The sects cannot stand before the ancient gospel where fully preached and practised. Those preachers who oppose the ancient gospel in the vicinities, do not only lose their adherents, but they lose the power of converting men to their system. Hence, a visible decline in the power, as well as in the admirers of sectarianism, every where appears in the district of country where the reformation and forgiveness of sins are proclaimed. To convert men to God, the sectaries have no power when this gospel is proclaimed. In a war between sects, that sect which happens to take with the people, will be most successful. But when the sects array themselves against "the knowledge of salvation by the remission of sins," they are found like Dagon with broken arms and limbs lying before the covenant of the Lord.

Such a meeting was not witnessed in the memory of any present, as was the late meeting of churches in Austintown. The first day, Friday, was spent in declaring the wonders which God had wrought
in various portions of the Western Reserve by the restoration of the ancient gospel. songs of praise and tears of joy mingled with these reports, translated us higher [in] the regions of bliss than we had ever before approached. The next day, finding no business to transact, no queries to answer, nothing to do but "to love, and wonder, and adore," it was unanimously agreed that the Mahoning Association as "an advisory council," as "an ecclesiastical tribunal;" exercising any supervision or jurisdiction over particular congregations, should never meet again. This Association came to its end as tranquilly as ever did a good old man whose attenuated thread of life, worn to a hair's breadth, dropped asunder by its own imbecility

"Night dews fall not more gently to the ground,
Nor weary worn out winds expire more soft,"
than did this Association give up the ghost.

The whole meeting was engaged for the most part in addresses from the holy scriptures, in exhortations, prayers, praises, and conversions. More than thirty persons were immersed for the remission of sins upon the ground, and after the meeting several more; making, I think, in all forty-three.

From the intelligence received from all parts of the Association, it appeared that within its bounds, and by the laborers acting under its auspices, during the last year about one thousand persons have been immersed for the remission of sins. This has been about the annual average of conversions for the last three years.

After the death and burial of "the Association," it was agreed that all the churches should meet on the Friday preceding the last Lord's day in August next, in New Lisbon, Columbiana county, for worship, and to report the progress of the gospel in their respective vicinities. This meeting is not made a stated meeting, but it will be optional with the brethren then and there assembled: whether, when, and where, to have another general meeting of the congregations in that district of country.


About ten public speakers have been partially employed in the conversions of the last year. But of these not one has been constantly in the field. More than half the number are farmers. I myself labor occasionally in the Word, and most, if not all, the brethren engaged in this work, either in whole or in part, labor with their own hands for their own support. Besides the assistance rendered by some congregations to their own overseers, the actual amount of contributions to those who rode through the Association, did not much exceed five hundred dollars.

These facts, a part of the statistics of only one district where the ancient gospel is proclaimed, will more fully corroborate the remarks in page 349 on the inefficiency of Presbyterianism. It will appear that the conversion of one soul to Presbyterianism, costs two hundred times as much as the conversion of one soul to the ancient faith and religion, The world must decide the genuineness of the conversion in favor of one or the other of the converts. This their lives must
prove. But by looking back into the statistics of the Presbyterian Church, it will appear that the annual expense of that institution, besides the foundation of its schools and colleges, and averaging the annuity of its ministers at 500 dollars each, amounts to more than 1,200,000 per annum, which makes each convert cost that population more than one hundred dollars. In arguing thus, we argue with them on their own principles. We reason with their own logic. Can that institution be of God?

The efficiency is in the sword of the Spirit. When used according to the tactics of the Captain of Salvation, it is mighty to subdue the King's enemies. This, and not philosophy and humanisms, is what converts the soul. The people are astonished at its efficiency. It not only converts enemies into friends, but teaches them to live holily and unblameably as sons of God. It proves itself to be God's instrument, not merely by its converting power, but by its power to form the life anew. Philosophy, whether Calvinian or Arminian, is as feeble in its sanctifying, as in its converting power. The impetus which it brings is too weak to drive a man from tile dominion of the flesh. But the argument of remission, immediate, full, and free, through faith in Jesus' blood, and immersion into his name; the love of God thus made sensible, tangible and accessible to the penitent, purities and elevates the affections of men above the allurements of time and sense. Hence, it is that the weapons which God puts into our hands, if rightly used, cannot fail of converting men to God, and of reforming their lives.

"These weapons of the holy War,
of what almighty force they are
To make our stubborn passions bow,
And lay the proudest rebel low!
The Greeks, the Jews, the learn'd. and rude,
Are by these heavenly arms subdued;
While Satan rages at the loss,
And hates the doctrine of the Cross.


Notes: (forthcoming)


|     No. 10.     | BETHANY, VIRGINIA:
|     Vol. 1.     |
I saw another messenger flying through the midst of heaven, having everlasting good news to proclaim to the inhabitants of the earth, even to every nation, and tribe, and tongue, and people -- saying with a loud voice, Fear God and give glory to him, for the hour of his judgments is come: and worship him who made heaven, and earth, and sea, and the fountains of wisdom. -- John.
Great is the truth and mighty above all things, and will prevail.

[447 - reprint pagination]

Traveller's Reply.

Dear Brother K,
Your very welcome letter was not received by me till after I left M[entor]. It subseulently came, enclosed in one from my brother at that place. You say, "Please give me a little sketch of your Journal," &, well, here you have it...
...Now, in reference to "Campbellism," -- I had heard the sound thereof in New England -- had possessed myself of, and carefully read, all the works of Alexander Campbell which I could procure. I had, before I left college, renounced all allegiance to creeds and confessions of faith of human fabrication; and when I was ordained, acknowledged no other than the Bible. I had read the New Testament once through, at least, without spectacles; or in other words, without any human system to bias me. I had become convinced that all our holy religion was based upou facts -- my faith upon testimony. I had discovered in immersion something more than I at first saw to be in it, viz. a pledge of pardon for all past transgressions. I had become very much shaken on the lawfulness and expediency of most of the prevailing popular religlous institutions -- .... and what shall I say more? -- What, on these data, will you now call me? A Campbellite? I hope not. No, I am no Campbellite. I hope you will never so call me -- that you will still regard me as a disciple of Christ, a brother: and yet, mirabile dictu! I did not find in the Western Country a greater Campbellite than myself! None who had read his writings more, or who entertained for him sentiments of higher respect. -- While I believe there is no man who has made, and is now making, greater sacrifice for the cause of truth -- none more benevolently than Alexander Campbell -- none to whom as Baptists and as Christians we are more indebted; -- I will not call him master, nor be called by his name. I had the privilege of spending several days at his house, of forming a very pleasing personal acquaintance with him, of hearing him proclaim the ancient gospel, and of seeing him i mmerse ten persons for the remission of their sins. I was introduced also to Walter Scott, to Sidney Rigdon, to Adamson Bentley; which three ministers have immersed, within three years, at least three thousand persons. I have been introduced also to many of these, and they are no Campbellites either. They are characterized, the most of any people that I ever saw, for searching the Scriptures, and for christian affection.

You will receive from A. C. by my naming you, the Millennial Harbinger Extra, on Remisson of Sins. After reading it carefully, and informing yourself more of this way, I should be happy to hear from you again.

Notes: (forthcoming)


|     No. 2.     | BETHANY, VIRGINIA:
|     Vol. II.     |
I saw another messenger flying through the midst of heaven, having everlasting good news to proclaim to the inhabitants of the earth, even to every nation, and tribe, and tongue, and people -- saying with a loud voice, Fear God and give glory to him, for the hour of his judgments is come: and worship him who made heaven, and earth, and sea, and the fountains of wisdom. -- John.
Great is the truth and mighty above all things, and will prevail.


EVERY age of the world has produced imposters and delusions. Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, and were followed by Pharaoh, his court, and clergy. They for some time supported their pretensions, much to the annoyance of the cause of the Israelites and their leader Moses.

To say nothing of the false prophets of the Jewish age, the diviners, soothsayers, magicians, and all the ministry of idols among the Gentiles, by which the nations were so often deceived, the imposters which have appeared since the Christian era would fill volumes of the most lamentable details ever read. The false Messiahs which have afflicted the Jews since the rejection of Jesus of Nazareth, have more than verified all the predictions of the Faithful and True Witness. No less than twenty-fpurdistinguished false Messiahs have disturbed the Jews. Many were deceived, and myriads lost their lives through their impostures. Some peculiar epochs were distinguished for the number and impudence of these impostors. If the people had fixed upon any year as likely to terminate their dispersions, and as the period of their return, that year rarely failed to produce a Messiah. Hence, in the twelfth century no less than ten false Messiahs appeared.

The year 1666 was a year of great expectation, and gave birth to one of the most remarkable of the false Christs. "Great multitudes marched from unknown parts, to the remote deserts of Arabia, and they were supposed to be the ten tribes of Israel, who had been dispersed for many ages. It was said that a ship was arrived in the north part of Scotland, with sails and cordage of silk, that the mariners spoke nothing but Hebrew, and on the sails was this motto: "The Twelve Tribes of Israel." Then it was said that Sabatai Levi appeared at Smyrna and professed to be the Messiah." The Jews gave up their business and attended to him. He obtained one Nathan in Jerusalem to pass for his Elias, or forerunner. Nathan prophesied for him, and the Jews became very penitent, and reformed under the expectation that the Messiah would appear in two years. "Some fasted so long that they died -- some endured melting wax to be dropped on their flesh -- some rolled in snow -- many whipped themselves. Superfluities in dress and household were dispensed with; property was sold to large amounts, and immense contributions were made to the poor. Though he met with much opposition, his followers increased, and began in large numbers to prophesy and fall into ecstacies. Four hundred men and women prophesied of his growing kingdom, and young infants who could hardly speak, would plainly pronounce, "Sabatai, Messiah and Son of God." The people were for a time possessed, and voices were heard from their bowels. Some fell into trances, foamed at the mouth, recounted their future prosperity, their visions of the Lion of Judah, the triumphs of Sabatai."

"When he was brought before the Magistrates, some affirmed they saw a pillar of fire between him and the Cadi or Magistrates, and others actually swore that they saw it. This the credulous Jews believed. -- Those who would not believe in him were shunned as excommunicated persons, and all intercourse with them was prohibited.

"The Grand Seignor, determined to try his faith by stripping him naked and setting him a mark for his archers; but rather than subject himself to this test, he turned Mahomedan, to the great confusion of the Jews."

We have been thus particular in giving a view, of the incidents of the life of this impostor, as a specimen of the others; and because of some remarkable analogies between him and the present New York imposter.

Numerous have been the imposters among christians since the great apostacy began; especially since, and at the time of the Reformation. Munzer, Stubner and Stork, where conspicuous in the beginning of the 16th century. "These men taught that among christians, who had the precepts of the Gospel to guide them, and the Spirit of God to direct them, the office of magistracy was not only unnecessary, but an unlawful encroachment on their spiritual liberty; that

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the distinctions occasioned by birth, rank, or wealth, should be abolished; that all Christians should put their possessions into one common stock, and live together in that state of equality, which becomes members of the same family; and that polygamy was not incompatible with either the Old or New Testament. They related many visions and revelations which they had from above, but failing to propagate their views by these means, they attempted to propagate them by arms. Many Catholics joined them, and in the various insurrections which they effected, 100,000 souls are said to have been sacrificed."

Since the Millennium and the evils of sectarianism have been the subjects of much speaking and writing, impostures have been numerous. In the memory of the present generation, many delusions have been propagated and received. The Shakers, a sect instituted by Anna Lesse, in 1774, have not yet quite dwindled away. This Elect Lady, as they style her, was the head of this party, and gave them a new Bible. "They assert that she spoke seventy-two languages, and conversed with the dead. Through her all blessings flow to her followers -- She appointed the sacred dance and the fantastic song, and consecrated shivering, swooning and falling down, acts of acceptable devotion. They are for a common stock, and rank marriage among the works of the flesh' -- they are plain in their apparel, and assume the aspect of the friars and nuns of Catholic superstition."

The Barkers, Jumpers, and Mutterers of the present age, need not be mentioned here. Nor need we detail the history of Miss Campbell, who in Good Old Scotland a year or two since, came back from the dead and had the gift of tongues; who was believed in by several ministers of the Scotch Church. But we shall proceed to notice the most recent and the most impudent delusion which has appeared in our time. The people that have received this imposture are called


I have just examined their bible, and will first notice its contents. It is called "The Book of Mormon, an account written by the hand of Mormon upon plates taken from the plains of Nephi, wherefore it is an abridgement of the Record of the people of Nephi, and also of the Lamanites, written to the Lamanites, which are a remnant of the House of Israel, and also to Jew and Gentile: written by way of Commandment, and also by the Spirit of Prophecy and of Revelation." -- "By Joseph Smith, Junior, Author and Proprieter." -- From plates dug out of the earth, in the township of Manchester, Ontario county, New York -- Palmyra, printed by E. B. Grandin, for the Author, 1830. It is a collection of Books said to have been written by different persons during the interval of 1020 years -- The 1st and second Books of Nephi occupy 122 pages; the Book of Jacob the brother of Nephi occupies 21; that of Enos 3; that of Jarom 2; that of Omin 4; the Words of Mormon 3; the Book of Mosiah 68; that of Alma 186; that of Helaman 44; that of Nephi the son of Helaman 66; that of Mormon 20; that of Ether 35; and that of Moroni 14 pages; making in all 588 octavo pages.

This romance -- but this is for it a name too innocent -- begins with the religious adventures of one Lehi, whose wife was Sariah, and their four sons, Laman, Lemuel, Sam, and Nephi. Lehi lived in Jerusalem all his life, up till the 1st year of Zedekiah, King of Judah, and when the prophets appeared foretelling the utter destruction of Jerusalem, Lehi humbled himself, and after various visions and revelations, started with his sons into the wilderness. Lehi, before his departure, forgot to bring with him the records of his family, and that of the Jews; but Nephi, his younger son, with much pious courage returned and succeeded in getting upon plates of brass the Records of the Jews from the Creation down to the 1st year of Zedekiah, King of Judah -- and also the prophets including many prophecies delivered by Jeremiah.

From the records it appeared that this Lehi was a son of Joseph. He prevailed on one Ishmael and his family to accompany him into the wilderness, whose daughters the sons of Lehi took for wives.

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Lehi was a greater prophet than any of the Jewish prophets, and uttered all the events of the christian era, and developed the records of Matthew, Luke, and John, 600 years before John the Baptist was born. - These pilgrims travelled several days journey in some wilderness, "a south, South-east direction, along the borders of the Red Sea." A ball with pointers on it, inscribed with various intelligence, legible at proper times, was the pillar and index in passing through the wilderness for many, very many days. By their bow and arrow they lived for eight years, travelling an easterly course from Jerusalem, until they came to a great sea. By divine revelation Nephi constructed a ship, and although opposed by his unbelieving brethren, being greatly assisted by the Holy Spirit, he succeeded in launching her safely, and got all his tribe, with all their stock of seeds, animals, and provisions, safely aboard. They had "a compass" which none but Nephi knew how to manage; but the Lord had promised them a fine land, and after many perils and trials, and a long passage, they safely arrived at the land of promise. Nephi made brazen plates soon after his arrival in America, for that was the land of promise to them, and on these plates be marked their peregrinations and adventures, and all the prophecies which God gave to him concerning the future destinies of his people, and the human race.

After his father's death, his brethren rebelled against him. They finally separated in the wilderness, and became the heads of different tribes, often in the lapse of generations making incurations upon each other. The Nephites, like their father, for many generations were good Christians, believers in the doctrines of the Calvinists and Methodists, and preaching baptism and other christian usages hundreds of years before Jesus Christ was born!

Before Nephi died, which was about 55 years from the flight of Lehi from Jerusalem, he had preached to his people every thing which is now preached in the state of New York, and anointed or ordained his brother Jacob priest pver his people, called the Nephites. Jacob brought up his son Enos "in the nurture and admonition of the Lord," gave him the plates, and left him successor in office over the people of Nephi. Enos says "there came a voice to me, saying, Enos thy sins are forgiven thee, and thou shalt be blessed. And, I sayeth, Lord how it is done. And he sayeth unto me, Because of thy faith in Christ, whom thou hast not heard nor seen." page 143. Enos died 179 years from the hegira of Lehi; consequently, this happened 431 years before Jesus Christ was born. He was a contemporary with Nehemiah, and may we not say how much wiser and more enlightened were the Nephites in America than the Jews at their return to Jerusalem!!

Enos gave the plates to Jarom, his son. In his time "they kept the law of Moses and the Sabbath day holy to the Lord." During the priesthood and reign of Enos, there were many commotions and wars between his people and the Lamanites. Then the sharp pointed arrow, the quiver, and the dart were invented. Jarom delivered his plates to his son Omni, and gave up the ghost 238 years from the flight of Lehi. Omni died 276 years from the hegira, and gave the plates to his son Amaron, who in the year 320, gave them to his brother Chemish; he, to his son Abinadom; he to his son Amaleki; and he having no son, gave them to the just and pious King Benjamin.

King Benjamin had three sons, Mosiah, Helorum, and Helaman, whom he educated in all the learning of his fathers. To Mosiah he delivered up the plates of Nephi, the ball which guided them through the wilderness, and the sword of one Laban, of mighty renown. King Benjamin addressed his people from the new temple which they had erected, for they had, even then, built a temple, synagogues, and a tower, in the New World.

King Benjamin assembled the people to sacrifice according to the law around the new temple; and he enjoined upon them, at the same time, the christian institutions, and gave them a patriarchal valedictory. After they had heard him speak, and had offered up their sacrifices, they fell down and prayed in the following words: "O have mercy, and apply the atoning blood

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of Christ, that we may receive forgiveness of our sins, and our hearts may be purified; for we believe in Jesus Christ the Son of God, who created Heaven and Earth and all things, who shall come down upon the children of men." Then the Spirit of the Lord fell upon them and they were filled with joy, having received a remission of their sins." p. 162.

King Benjamin ordered his people to take upon them the name of Christ, and in these remarkable words, -- "There is no other name given whereby salvation cometh; therefore I would that you should take upon you the name of Christ, all you that have entered into the covenant with God that ye should be obedient unto the end of your lives." p. 166. They all took upon them the name of Christ; and he, having ordained them priests and teachers, and appointed his son, Mosiah, to reign in his stead, gave up the ghost 476 years after Lehi's escape from Jerusalem, and 124 before Christ was born. Mosiah gave up the plates of brass, and all "the things which we had kept" to Alma, the son of Alma, who was appointed "chief judge and high priest," the people willing to have no King, and Mosiah died 569 years from the time Lehi left Jerusalem.

In the 14th year of the judges, and 69 years before the birth of Jesus, they sent out missionary priests, who preached through all the tribes of the country against all vices, "holding forth the coming of the Son of God, his sufferings, death and resurrection -- and that he should appear unto them after his resurrection: and this the people did hear with great joy and gladness." -- p. 269.

Alma's book reaches down to the end of the 39th year of the judges. These were wonderful years -- many cities were founded, many battles were fought, fortifications reared, letters written, and even in one year a certain Hagoth built an exceeding large ship, and launched it forth into the West Sea. In this embarked many of the Nephites. This same ship builder the next year built other ships -- one was lost with all its passengers and crew. -- p. 406.

Many prophecies were pronounced; one that in 400 years after the coming of Christ, the Nephites would lose their religion. During the time of the judges, many were called Christians by name, and "baptism unto repentance" was a common thing. "And it came to pass that they did appoint priests and teachers throughout all the land, and over all the churches." p. 349. "And those who did belong to the church were faithful; yea all those who were true believers in Christ took upon them gladly the name of Christ, or christians, as they were called, because of their belief in Christ." p. 301. "And it came to pass that there were many who died, firmly believing that their souls were redeemed by the Lord Jesus Christ: thus they went out of the world rejoicing." p. 353. "The word was preached by Helaman, Shiblon, Corianton, Amnon, and his brethren, &c. yea, and all those who had been ordained by the holy order of God, being baptized unto repentance, and sent forth to preach unto the people." p. 362. This happened in the 19th year of the judges, 72 years before the birth of Jesus. Before this time synagogues with pulpits were built, "for the Zoramites," a sort of Episcopalians, "gathered themselves together on one day of the week, which day they called the day of the Lord." -- "And they had a place which was high and lifted up, which held but one man, who read prayers, the same prayers every week; and this high place was called Rameumptom, which being interpreted, is the Holy Stand." p. 311.

The book of Helaman reacheth down to the 90th year of the judges, and to the year preceding that in which the Messiah was born. During the period embraced in Helaman's narrative, many ten thousands were baptized. "And behold the Holy Spirit of God did come down from heaven, and did enter into their hearts, and they were filled as with fire, and they could speak forth marvellous words." p. 421. Masonry was invented about this time; for men began to bind themselves in secret oaths to aid one another in all things,

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good or evil. p. 424. Powers of loosing and binding in heaven were conferred upon Nephi, the son of Helaman, and all miraculous powers, such as the Apostles possessed. One Samuel, also foretold that "the Christ would be born in five years, and that the night before should be as light as day; and that the day of his death should be a day of darkness, like the night." p. 445.

The book of this Nephi commences with the birth of the Messiah, 600 years from the departure of Lehi from Jerusalem. In the midst of the threats of the infidels to slaughter the faithful, the sun set; but lo! the night was clear as mid-day, and from that period they changed their era, and counted time as we do. A star also appeared, but it is not stated how it could be seen in a night as bright as day -- but it was universally seen throughout all the land, to the salvation of the pious from the threats of their enemies.

The terrors of the day of his death are also stated, and in the 34th year from his nativity, after his resurrection, he descended from heaven and visited the people of Nephi. Jesus called upon them to examine his hands and his sides, as he did Thomas, though none of them had expressed a doubt. Two thousand five hundred men, women and children, one by one, examined him, and then worshipped him. He commanded Nephi to baptize, and gave him the words which he was to use, viz: "Having authority given me, of Jesus Christ, I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen." He commissioned eleven others, who with Nephi, were his twelve American Apostles, and promised himself to baptize their converts "with fire and with the Holy Spirit."

He delivers them the sermon upon the mount, and some other sayings recorded in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. He healed all their diseases, and prayed for their children; but the things spoken were so great and marvellous that they could not be spoken nor written.

He ordained one to administer the supper, who alone had authority to dispense it to the disciples baptized in his name. The only new commandments which were given to the American christians on his occasional visits which were repeated, were -- "Pray in your families unto the Father, always in my name, that your wives and your children may be blessed." "Meet often, and forbid no man from coming unto you when you shall meet together." p. 492.

Nephi was chief among the 12 Apostles: he baptized himself, and then baptized the eleven, whose names were Timothy, Jonas, Mathoni and Mathoninah, Kumen, Kumenonhi, Jeremiah, Shimnon, Jonas, Zedekiah, and Isaiah. "They were baptized in fire and the Holy Ghost." Not a new word, however, should be written in addition to those found in the New Testament; for although he spake for several days to these American disciples, none of the new and marvellous sayings could be uttered or written!! He inspected the plates of Nephi, and only found one omission, which was that he failed to mention the resurrection of many saints in America at the time of the tempest and earthquake. He commanded these Nephites to be called christians.

The book of Nephi the son of Nephi, gives, in 4 pages, the history of 320 years after Christ. In the 36th year, all the inhabitants of the land were converted. There was a perfect community, and no disputations in the land for 170 years. Three of the American Apostles were never to die, and were seen 400 years after Christ; but what has become of them no one can tell, except Cowdery, Whitmer and Harris, the three witnesses of the truth of the plates of Nephi, be these three immortal men. Towards the close of the history of Nephi or the record of Ammaron, sects and divisions and battles became frequent, and all goodness had almost left the continent in the year 320.

Mormon appears next in the drama, the recording angel of the whole matter, who, by the way, was a mighty general and great christian; he commanded in one engagement 42,000 men against the Lamanites!!! He was no Quaker! This dreadful battle was fought A.D. 330. The Lamanites took

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South America for themselves, and gave North America to the Nephites. Mormon was very orthodox, for he preached in these words, A. D. 362: -- "That Jesus was the very Christ and the very God." He must have heard of the Arian controversy by some angel!!

Moroni finishes what Mormon, his father, left undone, and continues the history, till A.D. 400. He pleads that no one shall disbelieve his record because of its imperfections!! and declares that none who receive it will condemn it on account of its imperfections, and for not doing so, the same shall know greater things. p. 532. "He that condemneth it shall be in danger of hell fire." He laments the prevalency of free masonry in the times when his Book should be dug up out of the earth, and proves that miracles will never cease; because God is the same yesterday, to-day, and forever -- consequently must always create suns, moons, and stars, every day!! He exhorted to "take heed that none be baptized without telling their experience, nor partake of the Sacrament of Christ unworthily"!! p. 537.

Moroni, in the conclusion of his Book of Mormon, says if his plates had been larger we would have written in Hebrew; but because of this difficulty he wrote in the "Reformed Egyptian," being handed down and altered unto us according to our manner of speech." p. 538. "Condemn me not," says he, "because of mine imperfections; neither my father, because of his imperfections, neither them which have written before him; but rather give thanks unto God that he hath made manifest unto you our imperfections, that you may learn to be more wise than we have been." p. 538. A very necessary advice, indeed!!

Moroni writes the book of Ether, containing an account of the people of Jared, who escaped from the building of the tower of Babel unconfounded in his language. These people of Jared, God marched before in a cloud, and directed them through the wilderness, and instructed them to build barges to cross seas; and finally they built eight barges, air tight, and were commanded to make a hole in the top to admit air, and one in the bottom to admit water, and in them were put 16 windows of molten stone, which when touched by the finger of Jesus, became as transparent as glass, and gave them light under "the mountain waves," and when above the water. He that touched these stones, appeared unto the brother of Jared, and said, "Behold I am Jesus Christ, I am the Father and the Son." Two of these stones were sealed up with the plates, and became the spectacles of Joseph Smith, according to a prediction uttered before Abraham was born. It was also foretold in the Book of Ether, written by Moroni, that he that should find the plates should have the privilege of shewing the plates unto those who shall assist to bring forth this work, and unto three shall they be shown by the power of God: wherefore they shall of a surety known that these things are true." p. 548.

And the eight barges, air-tight, made like ducks, after swimming and diving 344 days, arrived on the coasts of the land of promise. The Book of Ether relates the wars and carnage amongst these people. In the lapse of generations they counted two millions of mighty men, besides women and children, slain; and finally, they were all killed but one, and he fell to the earth as if he had no life. So ends the book of Ether. p. 573.

The book of Moroni details the manner of ordaining priests and teachers, the manner of administering ordinances, and the epistles of Mormon to his son Moroni. Moroni seals up the record A.D. 423, and assures the world that spiritual gifts shall never cease, only through unbelief. And when the plates of Nephi should be dug up out of the earth, he declares that "men should ask God the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things were not true." "If with a sincere heart and real intent, having faith in Christ, such prayers are made, ye shall know the truth of all things." p. 586.

The testimony of Oliver Cowdery, David Whitmer, and Martin Harris, asserting that they saw the plates, is appended. They also testify that they know

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that they have been translated by the gift and power of God, for his voice has declared it unto them.

Another testimony is appended signed by four Whitmers, one Hiram Page, and three Smiths, affirming that they saw the plates, handled them, and that Smith has got the plates in his possession.

Such is an analysis of the book of Mormon, the Bible of the Mormonites. For noticing of which I would have asked forgiveness from all my readers, had not several hundred persons of different denominations believed in it. On this account alone has it become necessary to notice it, and for the same reason we must examine its pretensions to divine authority; for it purports to be a revelation from God. And in the first place, we shall examine its internal evidences.


It admits the Old and New Testaments to contain the revelations, institutions and commandments of God to Patriarchs, Jews, and Gentiles, down to the year 1830 -- and always, as such, speaks of them and quotes them. This admission at once blasts its pretensions to credibility. Admitting the Bible now received to have come from God, it is impossible that the book of Mormon came from the same Author. For the following reasons:--

I. Smith, its real author, as ignorant and impudent a knave as ever wrote a book, betrays the cloven foot in basing his whole book upon a false fact, or a pretended fact, which makes God a liar. It is this: -- With the Jews, God made a covenant at Mount Sinai, and instituted a priesthood, and a high priesthood. The priesthood he gave to the tribe of Levi, and the high priesthood to Aaron and his sons for an everlasting priesthood. He separated Levi, and covenanted to give him this office irrevocably while ever the temple stood, or till the Messiah came. "Then, says God, Moses shall appoint Aaron and his sons, and they shall wait on their priest's office, and the stranger, (the person of another family,) who cometh nigh, shall be put to death." Numbers iii.10. "And the priests, the sons of Levi, shall come near; for them the Lord thy God hath chosen to minister unto him, and to bless in the name of the Lord, and by their word shall every controversy and every stroke be tried." Deut. xxi. 5. Korah, Dathan, and Abiram, with 250 men of renown, rebelled against a part of the institution of the priesthood, and the Lord destroyed them in the presence of the whole congregation. This was to be a memorial that no stranger invade any part of the office of the priesthood. Num. xvi. 40. "Fourteen thousand and seven hundred of the people" were destroyed by a plague for murmuring against this memorial.

In the 18th chapter of Numbers the Levites are again given to Aaron and his sons, and the priesthood confirmed to them with this threat -- "The stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death." "Even Jesus," says Paul, "were he on earth, could not be a priest, for he was of a tribe concerning which Moses spake nothing of priesthood." Heb. vii.13. So irrevocable was the grant of the priesthood to Levi, and of the high priesthood to Aaron, that no stranger dare approach the altar of God which Moses established. Hence, Jesus himself was excluded from officiating as priest on earth according to the law.

This Joseph Smith overlooked in his impious fraud, and makes his hero Lehi spring from Joseph. And just as soon as his sons return with the roll of his lineage, ascertaining that he was of the tribe of Joseph, he and his sons acceptably "offer sacrifices and burnt offerings to the Lord." -- p. 15. Also it is repeated, p. 18 -- Nephi became chief artificer, ship-builder and mariner; was scribe, prophet, priest and king unto his own people, and "consecrated Jacob and Joseph, the sons of his father, priests to God and teachers -- almost 600 years before the fulness of the times of the Jewish economy was completed. p. 72. Nephi represents himself withal as "under the law of Moses," p. 105. They build a temple in the new world, and in 55 years after they leave Jerusalem, make a new priesthood which God approbates. A high

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priest is also consecrated, and yet they are all the while "teaching the law of Moses, and exhorting the people to keep it!!" p.146, 209. Thus God is represented as instituting, approbating and blessing a new priesthood from the tribe of Joseph, concerning which Moses gave no commandment concerning priesthood. Although God had promised in the law of Moses, that if any man, not of the tribe and family of Levi and Aaron, should approach the office of priest, he would surely die; he is represented by Smith as blessing, approbating, and sustaining another family in this approbated office. The God of Abraham or Joseph Smith must then be a liar!! And who will hesitate to pronounce him an imposter? This lie runs through his records for the first 600 years of his story.

II. This ignorant and impudent liar, in the next place, makes the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, violate his covenants with Israel and Judah, concerning the land of Canaan, by promising a new land to the pious Jew. If a company of reprobate Jews had departed from Jerusalem and the temple, in the days of Zedekiah, and founded a new colony, it would not have been so incongruous. But to represent God as inspiring a devout Jew and a prophet, such as Lehi and Nephi are represented by Smith, -- with a resolution to forsake Jerusalem and God's own house, and to depart from the land which God swore to their fathers so long as they were obedient; and to guide by a miracle and to bless by prodigies a good man in forsaking God's covenant and worship -- is so monstrous an error, that language fails to afford a name for it. It is to make God violate his own covenants, and set at nought his own promises, and to convert his own curses into blessings. Excision from the commonwealth of Israel, and banishment from Jerusalem and the temple, were the greatest curses the law of Moses knew. But Smith makes a good and pious Jew the subject of this curse, and sends him off into the inhospitable wilderness, disinherits him in Canaan, and makes him more happy in forsaking the institutions of Moses, more intelligent in the wilderness, and more prosperous in adversity, than even the Jews in their best days, in the best of lands, and under the best of all governments!!! The imposter was too ignorant of the history of the Jews and the nature of the covenants of promise, to have even alluded to them in his book, if he had not supposed that he had the plates of Moses in his own keeping, as he had his "molten plates" of Nephi. To separate a family from the nation of Israel, was to accumulate all the curses of the law upon that family. Deut. xxix. 21.

III. He has more of the Jews, living in the new world, than could have been numbered any where else, even in the days of John the Baptist; and has placed them under a new dynasty. The sceptre, with him, has departed from Judah, and a lawgiver from among his descendants, hundreds of years before Shiloh came; and King Benjamin is a wiser and more renowned King than King Solomon. He seems to have gone upon an adage which saith:-- "the more marvellous, the more credible the tale," and the less of fact, and the more of fiction, the more intelligible and reasonable the narrative.

IV. He represents the temple worship as continued in his new land of promise contrary to every precept of the Law, and so happy are the people of Nephi as never to shed a tear on account of the excision, nor turn an eye towards Jerusalem or God's temple. The pious Jews in their captivity turned their faces to Jerusalem and the holy place, and remembered God's promises concerning the place where he recorded his name. They hung their harps upon the willow trees, and could not sing the songs of Zion in a foreign land; but the Nephites have not a single wish for Jerusalem, for they can, in their wigwam temple, in the wilderness of America, enjoy more of God's presence than the most righteous Jew could enjoy in that house of which David had rather be a door-keeper, than to dwell in the tabernacles of men. And all this too, when God's only house of prayer, according to his covenant with Israel, stood in Jerusalem.

V. Malachi, the last of the Jewish prophets, commanded Israel to regard

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the law of Moses till the Messiah came. And Moses commanded them to regard him till the Great Prophet came. But Nephi and Smith's prophets institute ordinances and observances for the Jews, subversive of Moses, 500 years before the Great Prophet came.

VI. Passing over a hundred similar errors, we shall next notice his ignorance of the New Testament matters and things. The twelve Apostles of the Lamb, are said by Paul, to have developed certain secrets which were hid for ages and generations, which Paul says were ordained before the world to their glory -- that they should have the honor of announcing them. But Smith makes his pious hero Nephi, 600 years before the Messiah began to preach, and disclose these secrets concerning the calling of the Gentiles, and the blessings flowing through the Messiah to Jews and Gentiles, which Paul says were hid for ages and generations, "which in these ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto us the holy Apostles and prophets, by the Spirit; that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs and of the same body and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel." Smith makes Nephi express every truth found in the writings of the Apostles concerning the calling and blessing of the Gentiles, and even quotes the 11th chapter of Romans, and many other passages before he had a son grown in the wilderness able to aim an arrow at a deer. Paul says these things were secrets and unknown until his time; but Smith makes Nephi say the same things 600 years before Paul was converted! One of the two is a false prophet. Mormonites, take your choice!

VII. This prophet Smith, through his stone spectacles, wrote on the plates of Nephi, in his book of Mormon, every error and almost every truth discussed in New York for the last ten years. He decides all the great controversies; -- infant baptism, ordination, the trinity, regeneration, repentance, justification, the fall of man, the atonement, transubstantiation, fasting, penance, church government, religious experience, the call to the ministry, the general resurrection, eternal punishment, who may baptize, and even the question of free-masonry, republican government, and the rights of man. All these topics are repeatedly alluded to. How much more benevolent and intelligent this American apostle, than were the holy Twelve, and Paul to assist them!!! He prophesied of all these topics, and of the apostacy, and infallibly decided, by his authority, every question. How easy to prophecy of the past or of the present time!!

VIII. But he is better skilled in the controversies in New York than in the geography or history of Judea. He makes John baptise in the village of Bethabara, (page 22) and says Jesus was born in Jerusalem, p. 240. Great must be the faith of the Mormonites in this new Bible!!! The mariners compass was only known in Europe about 300 years ago; but Nephi knew all about steam boats and the compass 2400 years ago.

IX. He represents the christian institution as practised among his Israelites before Jesus was born. And his Jews are called Christians while keeping the law of Moses, the holy Sabbath, and worshipping in their temple at their altars, and by their high priests.

X. But not to honor him by a too minute examination and exposition, I will sum up the whole of the internal evidence which I deem worthy of remark, in the following details:--

The book professes to be written at intervals and by different persons during the long period of 1020 years. And yet for uniformity of style, there never was a book more evidently written by one set of fingers, nor more certainly conceived in one cranium since the first book appeared in human language, than this same book. If I could swear to any man's voice, face or person, assuming different names, I could swear that this book was written by one man. And as Joseph Smith is a very ignorant man and is called the author on the title page, I cannot doubt for a single moment that he is the sole author and proprietor of it. As a specimen of his style the reader will

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take the following samples -- Page 4th. In his own preface:-- "The plates of which hath been spoken." In the last page, "the plates of which hath been spoken." In the certificate signed by Cowdery and his two witnesses, he has the same idiom, "which came from the tower of which hath been spoken;" page 16, "we are a descendant of Joseph." "'The virgin which thou seest is the mother of God." "Behold the Lamb of God the Eternal Father," p. 25; "Ye are like unto they," "and I saith unto them," p. 44. "We did arrive to the promised land;" p. 49, "made mention upon the first plate," p. 50.

Nephi 2400 years ago hears the saying of a Pagan who lived 634 years after him -- "The God of nature suffers." p.5 1. "The righteous need not fear, for it is they which shall not be confounded." p. 58. Shakespeare was read by Nephi 2200 years before he was born -- "The silent grave from whence no traveller returns," 61. "Your own eternal welfare" was a phrase then common in America, p. 62. "Salvation is free" was then announced. "That Jesus should rise from the dead" was repeatedly declared on this continent in the reign of Nebuchadnezzar. And at the same time it was said, "Messiah cometh in the fulness of time that he might redeem the children of men from the fall;" p. 65. "The fall" was frequently spoken of at the Isthmus of Darien 2400 years ago.

I had no object, says Nephi, in the reign of Zedekiah, "but the everlasting salvation of your souls." 66. "I had spake many things," "for a more history part are written upon mine other plates." 69. "Do not anger again because of mine enemies," p. 70. "For it behoveth the Great Creator that he die for all men." "It must needs be an infinite atonement." "This flesh must go to its mother earth." "And this death must deliver up its dead," p. 70, were common phrases 2300 years ago -- "for the atonement satisfieth the demands of his justice upon all those who have not the law given them," p. 81. The Calvinists were in America before Nephi. "The Lord remembereth all they," 85. "The atonement is infinite for all mankind," p. 104. The Americans knew this on the Columbo 2400 years ago. "His name shall be called Jesus Christ the Son of God." An angel told this to Nephi 545 years before it was told to Mary, p.105. "And they shall teach with their learning and deny the Holy Ghost which giveth them utterance;" this prophecy was at that time delivered against us, p. 112. "My words shall hiss forth unto the ends of the earth," p. 115. "Wherein did the Lamb of God fill all the righteousness in being baptised by water," 118. This question was discussed 2300 years ago. "The baptism by fire and the Holy Ghost" was preached in the days of Cyrus, p. 119. "The only true doctrine of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost which is one God without end. Amen," p. 120. This was decided in the time of Daniel the Prophet. "I glory in plainness," says Nephi. "Christ will show you that these are his words in the last day," p. 122. Too late to prove your mission, Mr. Nephi!

"After that ye have obtained a hope in Christ, ye shall obtain riches if you seek them." So spoke Jacob in the days of Ezekial the Prophet. "They believed in Christ and worshipped the Father in his name," p. 129. This was said by Jacob in the time of Daniel. "Do as ye hath hitherto done," says Mosiah, page 158. These Smithisms are in every page. "And his mother shall be called Mary." p. 160. "The Son of God and Father of heaven and earth." p. 161. "The infant perisheth not, that dieth in his infancy." "For the natural man is an enemy of God and was from the fall of Adam, and will be forever and ever," p. 161. This was spoken by King Benjamin 124 years before Christ. He was a Yankee, too, for he spoke like Smith, saying, "I who ye call your king." "They saith unto the king," p. 182. This was another Joseph Smith called Mosiah. "They were baptised in the waters of Mormon, and were called the church of Christ," p. 192. This happened 100 years before Christ was born. "Alma, why persecuteth thou the church of God," p. 222. "Ye must be born again; yea, born of God -- changed from their carnal and fallen state to a state of

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righteousness," 214. This was preached also 100 years before Christ was born. "These things had not ought to be," 220.

"I, Alma, being consecrated by my father Alma to be a high priest over the church of God, he having power and authority from God to do these things, (p. 232) say unto you, except ye repent ye can in no wise enter into the Kingdom of Heaven." 237. "He ordained priests and elders, by laying on his hands, to watch over the church" -- "Not so much as a hair of the head shall be lost in the grave" -- "The holy order of the high priesthood." p. 250. The high priesthood of Alma was about 80 years before Christ. "The Lord poured out his spirit to prepare the minds of the people for the preaching of Alma, preaching repentance." p. 268. Alma was a Yankee of Smith's school, for he saith: "The light of everlasting light was lit up in his soul." p. 47.

During the pontificate of Alma men prayed thus: "If there is a God, and if thou art God wilt thou make thyself known unto me," p. 286. Alma "clapped his hands upon all they which were with him." p. 313. "Instruments in the hand of God" were the preachers of Alma, p. 323. Modest and orthodox men, truly! "If ye deny the Holy Ghost when it once hath place in you, and ye know that ye deny, behold this is the unpardonable sin." p. 332. So Alma preached. "And now my son, ye are called of God to preach the Gospel." p. 340. "They were high priests over the church." p. 350. "The twenty and second year of the judges this came to pass." p. 364. "They were valiant for courage." p. 376.

These are but as one drop out of a bucket compared with the amount of Smithisms in this book. It is patched up and cemented with "And it came to pass" -- "I sayeth unto you" -- "Ye saith unto him" -- and all the King James' haths, dids and doths; in the lowest imitation of the common version; and is, without exaggeration, the meanest book in the English language; but it is a translation made through stone spectacles, in a dark room, and in the hat of the prophet Smith from the reformed Egyptian!!! It has not one good sentence in it, save the profanation of those sentences quoted from the Oracles of the living God. I would as soon compare a bat to the American eagle, a mouse to a mammoth, or the deformities of a spectre to the beauty of Him whom John saw in Patmos, as to contrast it with a single chapter in all the writings of the Jewish or Christian prophets. It is as certainly Smith's fabrication as Satan is the father of lies, or darkness the offspring of night. So much for the internal evidences of the Book of Mormon.

Its external evidences are, first, the testimony of the prophets Cowdery, Whitmer, and Harris; who saw the plates and heard the voice of God; who are disinterested retailers of the books. I would ask them how they knew that it was God's voice which they heard -- but they would tell me to ask God in faith. That is, I must believe it first, and then ask God if it be true!! 'Tis better to take Nephi's proof which is promised to us in the day of final judgment! They say that spiritual gifts are continued to the end of time among the true believers. They are true believers -- have they wrought any miracles? They have tried; but their faith failed. Can they shew any spiritual gift? Yes, they can mutter Indian and traffic in new Bibles.

"But Smith is the wonder of the world." So was the Apocalyptic beast! "an ignorant young man." That needs no proof. Gulliver's travels is a heroic poem in comparison of this book of Smith. "But he cannot write a page." Neither could Mahomet, who gave forth the Alcoran. "Smith is an honest looking fellow." So was Simon Magus, the sorcerer. "But he was inspired." So was Judas, by Satan.

Its external evidences are also the subscriptions of four Whitmers, three Smiths, and one Page, the relatives and connexions of Joseph Smith, junior. And these "men handled as many of the brazen or golden leaves as the said Smith translated." So did I. But Smith has got the plates of which hath been spoken. Let him shew them. Their certificate proves nothing, save

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that Smith wrote it, and they signed it. But Smith gives testimony himself. There is one who says: "If I bear testimony of myself, my testimony ought not to be regarded."

If this prophet and his three prophetic witnesses had aught of speciosity about them or their book, we would have examined it and exposed it in a different manner. I have never felt myself so fully authorized to address mortal man in the style in which Paul addressed Elymas the sorcerer as I feel towards this Atheist Smith. His three witnesses, I am credibly informed, on one of their horse- swapping and prophetic excursions in the Sandusky country, having bartered horses three times for once preaching, represented Walter Scott and myself as employed in translating these plates, and as believers in the book of Mormon. If there was any thing plausible about Smith, I would say to those who believe him to be a prophet, hear the question which Moses put into the mouth of the Jews, and his answer to it -- "And if thou say in thy heart, How shallwe know the word which the Lord hath not spoken?" -- Does he answer, "Ask the Lord and he will tell you"? -- Does he say "Wait till the day of judgment and you will know"? Nay, indeed; but -- "When a prophet speaketh in the name of the Lord, if the thing follow not nor come to pass, that is the thing which the Lord hath not spoken; the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him." Deut.xviii. 8. Smith has failed in every instance to verify one of his own sayings. Again, I would say in the words of the Lord by Isaiah, "Bring forth your strong reasons, saith the King of Jacob: let them bring them forth and show us what shall happen: let them show the former things what they mean, that we may consider them, and know the latter end of them -- show the things which are to come hereafter, that we may know that you are prophets: yea, do good or do evil, that we may be dismayed and behold it together. Behold you are nothing, and your work of naught: an abomination is every one that chooseth you." Is. 41: 21-23.

Let the children of Mormon ponder well, if yet reason remains with them, the following passage from Isaiah 44, and if they cannot see the analogy between themselves and the sons of ancient imposture, then reason is of as little use to them as it was to those of whom the prophet spake --

"The carpenters having chosen a piece of wood framed it by rule and glued the parts together, and made it in the form of a man, and with the comeliness of a man, to set it in a house. He cut wood from the forest which the Lord planted -- a pine tree, which the rain had nourished, that it might be fuel for the use of man: and having taken some of it he warmed himself; and with other pieces they made a fire and baked cakes, and of the residue they made gods and worshipped them. Did he not burn half of it in the fire, and, with the coals of that half bake cakes: and having roasted meat with it did he not eat and was satisfied; and when warmed say, "Aha! I am warmed, I have enjoyed the fire?" Yet of the residue he made a carved god, and worshipped it, and prayeth to it, saying, "Deliver me, for thou art my God."

"They had not sense to think; for they were so involved in darkness that they could not see with their eyes, nor understand with their hearts: nor did any reason in his mind, nor by his understanding recollect, that he had burned half of it in the fire, and on the coals thereof baked cakes, and had roasted flesh and eaten, and of the residue had made an abomination; so they bow themselves down to it. Know thou that their heart is ashes, and they are led astray and none can deliver his soul. Take a view of it, will you not say, "There is indeed a lie in my right hand?"

"Remember these things, O Jacob, even thou Israel, for thou art my servant. I have made thee my servant; therefore O Israel do not thou forget me. For, lo! I have made thy transgressions vanish like a cloud -- and thy sins like the murky vapor. Return to me, and I will redeem thee."
                                  A. CAMPBELL.
February 10, 1831.

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THE following, letter was written by the congregation of Christ in Wellsburg, Va. some time in the beginning of January, upon hearing that Sidney Rigdon and some of the disciples in the congregation with him had apostized from the faith once delivered to the saints. Presuming that it may be useful to other societles and individuls who have been troubled by the false spirits which are gone forth from New York, we thought it prudent to give it an insertion. Being written during my absence, and having no date affixed to it, we cannot be more definite as to time than to say it was forwarded by a messenger some time in January last. -- Ed.

The church of God which is at Wellsburgh to the saints and faithful brethren in Christ who are at Kirtland: may favor, mercy, and peace, be multiplied to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

We would not have you ignorant, brethren, of the sorrow and sympathy which we have for you, since we heard of the trials and afflictions which have befallen you, and which you are still enduring. For this cause, therefore, and that we might be enabled to stir up your minds, by putting you in remembrance of the favor in which we stand, it seemed good to us, being assembled together in one place, to write to you this letter; and we, also, bow our knees to our Heavenly Father on your behalf, that he may strengthen you with all might in the inner man, that he may preserve you from all evil, and cause you to remain stedfast in the faith which was once delivered to the saints. You know, dear brethren, that we all were once aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenant of promise; that we were alive unto sin, but free men as to righteousness; that we could not call God our Father, and were not his people: that we were foolish and disobedient, serving divers lusts and pleasures; that we were filled with doubts and apprehensions, and were without the blessings and privileges of the gospel. But when our attention was directed to the testimony of God concerning his Son, we did not refuse to set to our seal that God is true. For the glad news of salvation came not to us depending upon human testimony; but began to be spoken by the Lord himself, and was confirmed to us by those who heard him, God himself bearing joint witness, both by signs, and wonders, and divers miracles, and distributions of the Holy Spirit, according to his own pleasure.

Finding ourselves, therefore, lost, miserable, and ruined, we gladly fled away to lay hold on the hope set before us in the gospel; and believing upon the testimony of his holy Apostles and Prophets, that Jesus is the Messiah, and that God hath raised him from the dead, we were induced, through the goodness of our Heavenly Father, to humble ourselves before his Glorious Majesty; and having made the good confession before men to submit to be buried with Christ in immersion, confessing our sins that we might be reused again to walk in newness of life.

Dearly beloved, we would at all times give most unfeigned thanks to our holy and beloved Father, that he has redeemed us from our

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vain bchaviour delivered to us by our fathers, not with corruptible things as silver and gold; but with the precious blood of Jesus Christ, as of a Lamb without blemish and without spot: that he hath quickened us who were dead in trespasses and sins, and hath set us down together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus, having freely forgiven us all trespasses. We would ever adore his goodness, that having begotten us by the gospel, the word of truth, through the bath of regeneration, we have been born of Water and of Spirit -- have become his children, and have been introduced into the kingdom of heaven.

And we would continually praise him, that we have been assured of the possession of these blessings, not by men, nor by the word of man, but by the testimony with which he himself has furnished us; that our faith and hope might rest in the word of God, the incorruptible seed, of which we were born, and which lives and abides forever.

How, then, do those that trouble you say, that you should be immersed again? Is there another faith than that depending upon the testimony of those who saw and heard the Lord? Is there another gospel which we have not received, or another Saviour whom we have not acknowledged. Know you not that so many of us as have been immersed into Christ have put him on? And is there, then, another Christ into whom we have not been immersed -- another forgiveness which we have not received, or another God whom we have not for a Father? Or has the incorruptible seed of the word of which we have been born, become corruptible and ready to perish? Then, indeed, have we believed in vain, and are yet in our sins. Then, indeed, have we suffered contumely and reproach for the cause of Christ in vain, and in vain have labored to overcome the world and to walk worthy of our heavenly calling. And if we have been heretofore deceived, to whom shall we go? If the testimony of God is not to be believed, shall we believe man? Shall we relinquish the salvation which the word of God assures us we already possess, for any salvation which men may promise? And if the Leader into whom we have been already immersed is unable to guide us to the mansions of the blessed, shall we be led thither by another master?

Dearly beloved, let us be assured that there is not another name given under heaven whereby we must he saved, than the name of Jesus Christ; that no other foundation can any man lay than is already laid; and that if a man or an angel from heaven should preach any other gospel than that which we have already received, and in which we stand, and by which also we are saved if we keep it in remembrance, he will be accursed when the Lord comes.

Seeing, then, that we have purified our souls by obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, let us continue in the truth, rooted and grounded in love, and abounding in the work of the Lord at all times. For it is our most reasonable service to present our bodies a living, holy and acceptable sacrifice unto God; of whom we are in Christ Jesus, who has become to us wisdom

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from God, righteousness also, and sanctification, and redemption. Though we were some time ago darkness, yet now are we light in the Lord -- let us, therefore, walk as the children of light. God our Heavenly Father is light, and in him is no darkness at all. With the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ was the fellowship of the Apostles, who have testified to us what they have seen and heard, that we also might have fellowship with them. Now, if we say that we have fellowship with God, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not the truth. But If we walk in the light as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son, cleanses us from all sin. Let us, therefore, purify ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of the Lord. Let us walk worthy of the calling by which we are all called; with all humbleness of mind and meekness, and with long-suffering; supporting one another in love. And let us endeavor to preserve the unity of the Spirit by the bond of peace. There is one body and one spirit as also we have been called to one hope of our calling, one Lord, one faith, one immersion, one God and Father of all, who is in all, and with all, and in us all. For in one Spirit we have all been immersed into one body, and all have been made to drink of one Spirit. By the Holy Spirit we have been enabled to call Jesus Lord. We know his name, and his name is all our trust. Our Father giveth his Holy Spirit to them that ask him; and we have received the Spirit, whose fruits are love, joy, peace, goodness, fidelity, meekness, temperance; and we know that we have passed away from death into life, because we love the brethren.

What is, therefore, to hinder. brethren, but that we should rejoice in the Lord, and with patience wait his coming? For having received the salvation of our souls, we are waiting for the adoption, that is, the redemption of our bodies. Let us, therefore, in this blessed hope, press forward in the race set before us, ever looking off to Jesus who is the author and finisher of our faith, and who, for the joy set before him, endured the cross despising the shame, and is set down on the right hand of God. For all the trials of this present time are not to be compared to the glory which shall be revealed in us. He who has called us is faithful, and his promises shall never fail of their accomplishment.

We beseech you, therefore, dear brethren, by the mercies of God, that you be not moved away from the hope of the gospel which we have received; that you do not forget that vou have been purged from your old sins; that you have been born of Water and Spirit, and have already been made partakers of salvation. Be stable and unmoved, and be not tossed and whirled shout with every wind of doctrine by the sleight of men, and by craftiness formed into a subtle method of deceit: but be patient, and hope to the end for the glory which is to be revealed. And let us ever continue in prayer and supplication, and abound in thanksgiving to God even our Father through the Lord Jesus Chrst who is the faithful witness, the first born of the dead, und the ruler of the kings of the earth: who has loved us and washed

100                         MILLENNIAL HARBINGER.                        

us from our sins in his own precious blood, and has made us kings and priests to his God and Father -- to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever, Amen. Behold! he comes in the clouds and every eye shall see him, even they who pierced him; and all the tribes of the earth shall mourn because of him; yes, so let it be: Let us, therefore, watch, brethren, seeing we have washed our robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Behold! says he, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watches and keeps his garments, that he may not walk naked, so that men should see his shame.

Brethren, pray for us that we may be accounted worthy to stand before him in that day. And may the Lord strengthen you and bless you. May he lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace. We wish you to have this letter read in all the churches who suffer with you. And now to him who is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we can ask or conceive, to him be glory by the congregation for Christ Jesus throughout all the endless succession of ages.


It was with mingled emotions of regret and surprize that we have learned that Sidney Rigdon has renounced the ancient gospel, and declared that he was not sincere in his profession of it: and that he has fallen into the snare of the Devil in joining the Mormonites. He has led away a number of disciples with him. His instability I was induced to ascribe to a peculiar mental and corporeal malady, to which he has been subject for some years. Fits of melancholy succeeded by fits of enthusiasm accompanied by some kind of nervous spasms and swoonings which he has, since his defection, interpreted into the agency of the Holy Spirit, or the recovery of spiritual gifts, produced a versatility in his genius and deportment which has been increasing for some time. I was willing to have ascribed his apostacy to this cause, and to a conceit which he cherished that within a few years, by some marvelous interposition, the long lost tribes of Israel were to be collected, had he not declared that he was hypocritical in his profession of the faith which he has for some time proclaimed. Perhaps this profession of hypocrisy may be attributed to the same cause. This is the only hope I have in his case.

He acted in this instance more like one laboring under some morbid affection of mind, than like one compos mentis. He first believed in Smith's three witnesses, and then went to see Smith in pursuit of the evidence. He found ample evidence of Smith's honesty, and returned in the full assurance of faith that Smith is some prophet which was to come. 'Tis true he has not yet found that promise in the book of God which authorized the expectation of Joseph Smith the junior, as the restorer of the Jews and the founder of the New Jerusalem. Smith promised the Holy Spirit in its special gifts to all who have faith in his mission. He told them to pray to God and they should know whether he was divinely sent. While Sidney and Cowdery, the Magnus Apollo of Smith, were in conclave in this matter, Sidney

                        MILLENNIAL HARBINGER.                         101

yielded to the suggestion to pray. Whereupon one of his fits of swooning and sighing came upon him, he saw an angel and was converted.

He who sets out to find signs and omens will soon find enough of them. He that expects visits from angels will find them as abundant as he who in the age of witchcraft found a witch in every unseemly old woman. I doubt not but that the irreverence and levity in speaking of the things of God, which have been too apparent in Sidney's public exhibitions for some time past, and which he has lately confessed, may yet be found to have been the cause of this abandonment to delusion. The Methodists, amongst whom it appeared so well to take, amongst whom it has recently so much prevailed, ought to be admonished against laying themselves open to such impressions in their swoonings, vociferous ejaculations, and notions about new visions and revelations of the Spirit. The Presbyterians, also, who are for physical operations, may learn the necessity of believing their own Confession of Faith which says that to the testimony of the Apostles and prophets "nothing is to be added, either by a new revelation from the Spirit, or the doctrines and commandments of men." The number of sceptics and nonprofessors which have believed in the delusions of Mormon, remind me of one of the sayings of Jesus -- "I have come in my Father's name, and you do not receive me: "if another come in his own name him you will receive."

Most of the disciples of Jesus Christ are in much need of being taught the foundations on which their faith should rest in the sacred writings; and as we are all learning in the school of experience. I trust that the incidents of this year will be useful to all, both teachers and taught, in inducing them to examine with more attention the reason of their faith and hope in God's word. The Apostles had to complain of some whose word, like a cancer, consumed the body of Christ, of some who subverted the faith of others, and it will be well for those who preach that faith if they have not to complain of more than one Phygellus and Hermogenes, of more than one Hymeneus and Philetus.

Mr. Sedwick of Zanesville, and Messrs. Noel and the Chronicle, club of Kentucky, represented this defection as the legitimate result of their phantom "Campbellism." I would ask each of these gentlemen if individually and collectively they would give themselves up in their moral character, as a full specimen of the tendency of Calvinism and Fullerism!! So soon as they do this, we may test their system; and may then show that every person who receives the book of Mormon is an apostate from all that he ever professed, if, indeed, he ever professed to receive or value any thing we have ever spoken or written on the subject of Christianity.

Notes: (forthcoming)


|     No. 7.     | BETHANY, VIRGINIA:
MONDAY, JULY 4, 1831.
|     Vol. II.     |
I saw another messenger flying through the midst of heaven, having everlasting good news to proclaim to the inhabitants of the earth, even to every nation, and tribe, and tongue, and people -- saying with a loud voice, Fear God and give glory to him, for the hour of his judgments is come: and worship him who made heaven, and earth, and sea, and the fountains of wisdom. -- John.
Great is the truth and mighty above all things, and will prevail.


On a recent tour through the Western Reserve, Ohio, of twenty-two days in which we travelled, out and in, 350 miles, and delivered eighteen discourses; after which 27 persons were immersed, we learned that the delusion for 1830 had lost its charms; that a good many of those bewitched by the false prophets had begun to recover their reason, and desert the ranks of the new Apostle. The lying spirit, which has always been the spirit of false prophets, had so generally inspired the worshipers of Joseph Smith, that it alone, through the extravagant stories told of miracles, prophecies, and visits of angels, by the witnesses of the golden plates of Nephi, has well nigh inscribed the epitaph upon the tomb of Mormon. Had it not been for the conversion of a Mr. Booth, a Methodist preacher of very considerable standing, many years on the circuit, to the New Bible, the cause had been at this time with the fugitive Smith in pursuit of a city of refuge among the Indians of the remote wilds of the West. But this erudite gentleman, as he said, discovered that there is more than four times as much proof of the book of Mormon than there is for the New Testament: for christians had not one living witness to attest the apostolic writings, whereas the disciples of Joseph Smith had four living witnesses to sustain the book of Mormon.

The accession of Mr. Booth and a number of his Methodist friends and relations, some two or three months since, prolonged the existence of this new religion a few weeks. The New York converts who migrated after Smith to Ohio, begin to have their eyes opened to discern both good and evil, and some of them, too, have concluded "to follow Smith no farther." The representations given them of the site of the holy city at Kirtland they have now proved to be as unfounded as the religion of their master, and are therefore trying to improve their misfortunes by securing to themselves what remains in their hands of their little plunder brought from their homes. Smith and his inferior prophets are gone to the West to find the site for the New Jerusalem, carrying with them a kettle of the stuff contributed by those who have sold their possessions and laid their money at his feet, with which no doubt he will purchase some lands in the name of Smith & Co. and then it will be commanded by the Lord that all who do not help to build and inhabit the new city on said lands, shall be utterly destroyed in the impending vengeance. Before all his adherents are cured of their frenzy it is probable Smith and his prophets will have acquired a better estate than he could have acquired m New York in his former profession of money-digger, juggler, and diviner for stolen goods, &c. &c,

So far gone are some of his adherents that nothing but starvation can cure them. Even Sidney Rigdon told me that "were Joseph to be proved a liar, or say himself that he never found the Book of Mormon as he has reported, still he would believe it, and believe that all who do not believe it shall be damned." But a very few, however, have attained to this faith of assurance; and it is more than probable that none of the late converts ever will.

Notes: (forthcoming)


|     No. 8.     | BETHANY, VIRGINIA:
|     Vol. II.     |
I saw another messenger flying through the midst of heaven, having everlasting good news to proclaim to the inhabitants of the earth, even to every nation, and tribe, and tongue, and people -- saying with a loud voice, Fear God and give glory to him, for the hour of his judgments is come: and worship him who made heaven, and earth, and sea, and the fountains of wisdom. -- John.
Great is the truth and mighty above all things, and will prevail.


                                          From the Burlington Sentinel.
Mr. JOHN STEWART, of Bakersfield, put an end to his existence, May 19th by hanging himself on a tree. The cause of this dreadful deed was the following:--

About two years ago, a man by the name of Davidson came into this vicinity, pretending to be endowed with the Holy Spirit, and to be inspired of God to prophesy of things to come. He is a disciple, he tells us, of Dilks, who has figured in the state of Ohio for three or four years past. Davidson pretends that Dilks has almighty power, and is God himself He has gained quite a number of proselytes in the towns of Bakersfield, Fairfax, and Fairfield. He wears his hair long, and pretends a great deal of piety. He preaches that Jesus Christ is a woman, and quite inferior to Dilks; that the millennium will take place in 1832 -- Philadelphia is the place designated where Dilks is to assemble his followers, and then the rest of mankind are to be swept from the face of the earth, and Dilks and his followers are to inherit their possessions.

This Davidson has got about thirty disciples in the east part of Fairfield and in the west part of Bakersfield. They meet together every Sabbath and carry on in a manner most shocking to human feelings. They roll naked on the floor, both men and women. and commit other sins too revolting to be mentioned. But this is but a faint picture of their shameful conduct. Modesty forbids that I should utter the whole. A few days since they pretended to crucify a woman, and put her in a box and began to pray over her, in order to raise her from the dead; but being wearied with lying shut up in a closed box, she finally came forth with her own accord before they intended.

They have a woman among them by the name of Thompson, who pretends now that she is Jesus Christ, and baptises Davidson's followers. She sprinkles them, in the first place, with flour. The rest of the ceremony I will omit, for modesty's sake. She performs her baptiam, however, in the name of the Holy Trinity. A man who once represented the town of Fairfax in our General Assembly, I understood, was baptised by this woman at the house of a man by the name of Gardner, in Fairfield: Gardener's house is the place of their resort.

The man who hanged himself was threatened by Mrs. Thompson that unless he immediately obeyed her commands he should be sent forthwith to hell-fire! She had made him swear by the living God, on his knees, that he would be true to the prophet Davidson and his people, and do whatever he was required to do by him or herself. She then required of him things too horrid and indecent to be named. The poor, simple man, went to his home and put a period to his life.

It is thought by many judicious persons that Randall, of Franklin, who murdered his family a short time since, was deluded into that atrocious act by believing Davidson's doctrine. He was one of his disciples, in part, at least.

There is another man among them that is beginning to be crazy. I believe the whole of it is the work of the evil one, and that Davidson goes about and preaches only for the sake of doing all the harm he can to religion.

Immediately after Stewart hanged himself, several men agreed to tar and feather Davidson. One of the men, with several lads, went to Gardner's with their apparatus for tarring, and found Davidson delivering a lecture. They waited awhile for others to help them; but no one came: the man entered the room and dragged out Davidson, and the boys applied the tar. The others undertook to rescue Davidson, but shared the same fate. The tar was faithfully applied to their pates, in turn. A man from Colchester fled to the chamber, but was pursued to his retreat, and was spared by being very penitent, and proclaiming that he would not be seen in Fairfield again.

I have just been conversing with a gentleman of undoubted veracity, who informs me that he has been present, and saw with his own eyes a man get down and kiss the floor at the command of Mrs. Thompson; and says that this is but a faint picture, that I have given above, of the base conduct of Davidson and his followers.       L.
Fairfield, June 3, 1831.

Notes: (forthcoming)


|     No. 11.     | BETHANY, VIRGINIA:
|     Vol. II.     |
I saw another messenger flying through the midst of heaven, having everlasting good news to proclaim to the inhabitants of the earth, even to every nation, and tribe, and tongue, and people -- saying with a loud voice, Fear God and give glory to him, for the hour of his judgments is come: and worship him who made heaven, and earth, and sea, and the fountains of wisdom. -- John.
Great is the truth and mighty above all things, and will prevail.


These gentlemen, who were led away with the delusions of Smith's book of Mormon, have publicly renounced the delusion, and returned to the societies from which they had seceded. The latter gentleman has published in a Paynesville Telegraph of last month his renunciation of Mormonism. He had travelled one thousand miles in quest of the site for the New Jerusalem, in company with Smith and his Prophets. While on this tour his eyes were opened; and in his letter to a Methodist brother of September 12, he avers that the conviction became to him irresistible that the plotters of this mercenary and wicked scheme design "the establishment of a society in Missouri, over which the contrivers of this delusive system are to possess unlimited and despotic sway."

Notes: (forthcoming)

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