[Table of Contents]
Alexander Campbell, ed.|
The Millennial Harbinger, Vol. III, No. V (1832)
|THE MILLENNIAL HARBINGER.|
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 water.--JOHN.
Great is the truth and mighty above things, and will prevail.
The reader will please read the letter from brother Coon, Lexington, Ky. at the close of the preceding number, as prefatory to the following remarks.
THE New Testament contains the constitution, laws, ordinances, and discipline of the christian church, if such things belong to it at all. Hence the propriety of proposing this volume as the bond of union among the churches. But what avails a promise to be governed by this book, unless this promise he faithfully fulfilled? Why promise to submit to the constitution, laws, institutions, and rules of discipline found in this volume, and afterwards require submission to institutions and usages wholly human? Such would appear to have been the cause of the recent abortion in Lexington, KY. Who ever read in the New Testament of one Bishop to two or four churches? Who ever read of a monthly breaking of the loaf, or of quarterly communion? Does any New Testament writer authorize the importation of Bishops from other churches; or a monthly or even a stated weekly meeting for the purpose of "hearing preaching" and the usual fashionable appendages? The Regular Baptists in former times chose Bishops or Presidents from among themselves in every church; but now they have found out an ingenious way of evading what they acknowledge a New Testament institution. A church in Philadelphia wishes to have an accomplished orator from Georgia: he is then called, and the quid pro quo is tacitly agreed upon, or there is "an understanding" upon that subject. He preaches his farewell sermon to his former charge; thinks his labors were not blessed, and hopes that the Lord has something for him to do in Philadelphia, which he did not wish him to do in Augusta, or expect that he could do. He receives his letter of dismission, and hies away to Philadelphia. He there presents it to the church that called him, and is received as a private member; and thus being one of them, he is selected from among them as if he had first "been well proved;" and is forthwith ordained  or installed Bishop of the church. Thus the forms are kept pretty fair; while, in fact, the true intent and meaning of the apostolic institution is evaded.
"The Christians" in Lexington, it would seem, are not Antiochans in these particulars. They could not think of the weekly meeting for christian worship, nor of receiving the emblems and memorials of the great sacrifice, unless consecrated and presented by the hands of one ordained by men to minister at the altar, even though he should be called from a distant church, or have the presidency of a plurality of congregations. The New Testament, indeed, could not be a bond of union to those thus traditionized; for it knows no such usages. A warrant for a Universal Bishop will as soon be found in the apostolic writings, as for one Preacher, Bishop or Elder, with a plurality of congregations. But a plurality of Bishops or Presidents in one congregation is fully sanctioned in the Christian Scriptures.
Oratory is now the rage of Protestant Christendom. The good orator is the good divine, and men will be at more pains and labor to gratify this Athenian itch, than to keep the commandments of him who redeemed them by his own blood. But when the orator super-adds to his eloquence the charms of his being called and sent by divine authority "to preach to Christians" and "to administer ordinances," his authority is irresistible, and his presence indispensable to christian worship. When he is absent the church can do nothing. Like a widow forlorn and desolate, she is solitary and silent. But the presence of this oratorial Pastor is like the meeting of the bridegroom and the bride.
But until the Christians have more love to Jesus Christ, and more veneration for his Apostles, than for fine oratory, or the warmth of a fervid and boisterous declaimer; until they regard one another as the children of God, and as kings and priests to God; as a chosen generation and a kingly priesthood; until they prefer communion with the Father and his Son Jesus Christ, in keeping his institutions, to the formalities of the kingdom of the clergy, it will be in vain to profess reformation, or a love for the union of Christians upon New Testament premises.
What is union among Christians worth unless it be for the promotion of holiness and happiness among themselves, or for the conversion of the world! And can either the one or the other object be gained, if the ancient order of things is not venerated more than all the mourning benches, anxious seats, camp meetings, protracted meetings, class meetings quarterly meetings--more than all the sacraments, christenings, holy days, ordinations, festivals, carnivals, and fastings of clerical appointment--more than all the rhapsodies, sermons, orations, pulpits, and religions shows of the Scribes and orators, field preachers, pulpit preachers, and revival makers of this adulterous generation.
Union-like sincerity, like zeal is either to be sought or shunned, to be admired or contemned, to be advocated or deprecated, because of that with which it is associated. The union which obtained amongst  the first Babel-builders, and which now obtains amongst their antitypes, the impiously self-styled "Holy and Apostolic Church," are curses and not blessings to mankind. If all the sects in the land were to unite with their present views and feelings, sectarian only excepted, how much better for the world or the church would it be! The Lord, in his mercy, and in his wrath, once divided the tongues of men; and it is an act of mercy, as respects the whole inhabitants of the earth, now to divide the tongues of a corrupt people.
When, then, we denounce sectarianism, it is only in so far as it keeps the people of God, (in other words, them who would keep the commandments of Jesus) apart. No true disciple of Jesus can be a sectarian in its legitimate import. He that stands up for his party seldom can stand before God with a good conscience, Ulcers on a scrophulous body are neither more natural nor necessary than schisms amongst a corrupted people. No other way of abating the virulence of moral disease, of draining off the corruptions from a vitiated body, than by these outbreakings, which end in the dismemberment of religious associations.
Union amongst all the disciples of Jesus in the faith once divinely taught, is supremely to be desired; but a union of sects is as supremely to be deprecated. The evil one has converted sects to his interest as he once did the boasted unity of the papal see. "Will you rend the seamless mantle of Christ?" was Satan's text for a thousand years. Since Luther and Melancthon first differed in opinion, his text has been "How can two walk together unless they are agreed?" As Satan is a Jew in Palestine, a Catholic in Rome, and a Protestant in England, it is no departure from his policy to preach a thousand sermons upon both texts according to the signs of the times. Thus thousands of Christians are induced to think that in contending for the peculiarities of their sect, they contend for Christ and his gospel; and in opposing them who differ from them, they imagine they are opposing the enemies of Jesus; while, in truth, very often they are uniting with the enemies of the cross against the real friends of Jesus. This is a master stroke of policy in the arch deceiver, by which he has made sects avail to his interest, as once he triumphed by the boasted unity of Babylon the Great.
If the Christians in all sects could be drawn together, then would the only real, desirable, and permanent union, worthy of the name of the union of Christians, be achieved. How to affect this has long been a question with us and many others. To us, it appears, the only practicable way to accomplish this desirable object, is to propound the ancient gospel and the ancient order of things in the words and sentences found in the apostolic writings--to abandon all traditions and usages not found in the Record, and to make no human terms of communion. But on this theme much must yet be said before all the honest will understand it. One thing, however, is already sufficiently plain to all, that a union amongst christians can be obtained only upon scriptural grounds, and not, upon any sectarian platform in existence.
Query.--PERMIT me to ask of you occasionally to explain difficulties that may present themselves to the young learner. I find a letter written by Paul, and Sylvanus, and Timotheus, to the church composed of Thessalonians, in which they speak of themselves as being Apostles. See 6th verse of the 2d chapter, Were Sylvanus and Timotheus APOSTLES? If so, how will we prove that the Apostles have no successors? We could not prove that Sylvanus or Timotheus ever saw Jesus Christ? &c. Enough has been said to explain the difficulty. Yours in the Lord,
Answer.--There are three orders of Apostles spoken of in the New Testament.
1st. Jesus Christ is called the Apostle of God, or the Apostle of the christian religion, (Heb. iii. 3.) in the same sense as Moses was the Apostle of the Jews' religion. Shiloh, (from shileh, to send,) is applied by the Hebrews to the minister of the synagogue, as negotii aedis sacrae curator, i. e. curator or president of the business of the sacred house. One sent by God with authority to preside over his house, fills the outlines of the Hebrew word Shiloh, to which the Greek word Apostolos is made to correspond by the Seventy and by the New Testament writers. John xvii. 18. Jesus, by a periphrasis, calls himself the Apostle of the Father: "As thou hast constituted me thy Apostle, so have I constituted them my Apostles to the world."
Of this order there were but two Apostles--Moses and Jesus; Apostles of God, persons called and sent by God, with authority to call, organize, and preside over his family.
The second order are the Apostles of Jesus Christ, called and sent by and from him, with authority to call, organize, and preside over his family, or that family which God has given him. Hence the christian assembly is the congregation of God as well as the congregation of the Lord Jesus Christ. Such were the twelve Apostles of the Lamb.
The third order are the Apostles of the congregations. These were persons chosen and sent by the congregations on special errands, and therefore are called in the original apostoloi ecclesiou, (Apostles of the churches.) 2 Cor. viii. 23. Paul himself surnames them the Apostles of the churches, and calls Epaphroditus the Apostle of the Philippians, ch. ii. 25. The three orders in contradistinction are appropriately styled the Apostles of God, the Apostles of Jesus Christ, and Apostles of the congregations.
It might be added that some individuals in the first age were by some special suggestions of the Holy Spirit sent out by the Christian congregation on special missions. The Holy Spirit suggested not to themselves that they ought to go forth, but to the congregation to send them forth as aids of those immediately called and sent by the Lord Jesus in his own person. Thus Barnabas was sent forth in company with Saul, not to transact any special business for the congregation  that sent him, but to be a fellow-laborer in a special mission from the King. "The Holy Spirit said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul to the work to which I have called them." Barnabas is on this account associated with Paul us an Apostle in a subordinate sense of the term.
Joses, a Levite of Cyprus, obtained a high renown in Jerusalem among the Apostles for his liberality, and especially for his powers in exhortation. They surnamed him Barnabas which signifies a son of exhortation.1 Thus our Lord surnamed James and John Boanerges, (sons of thunder,) for their zeal and power. As an exhorter Barnabas was renowned. Acts xi, 23, 24. He was first an Apostle of the congregation in Jerusalem, (Acts xi. 22,) sent to Antioch, where he was renowned as a prophet and exhorter. He was with Paul again sent by the Antiochans as their Apostle to Jerusalem, and thence returned to Antioch before he and Saul were sent out by the command of the Holy Spirit on a general mission from Antioch. They had John for their attendant. Luke records certain incidents in this mission and tour which occurred in Salamis, Paphos, Perga, Antioch in Pisidia, Iconium, Lystra, Derbe of Lycaonia, and Attalia, until their return to Antioch in Syria. Thus they traversed the three provinces of Pamphylia, Lycaonia, and Pisidia. From Antioch they were sent to Jerusalem to consult the Apostles and Elders in that church on the much vexed question about the circumcision of the Gentiles. From Jerusalem they returned to Antioch, accompanied by two other Apostles of the church in Jerusalem, viz. Silas, or Sylvanus, and Judas, surnamed Barsabas, (son of rest.) These were chief men among the brethren in Jerusalem. Paul and Barnabas continued some time in Antioch; and upon a proposition from Paul to revisit the congregations, they disputed on the propriety of taking with them John Mark. Thus, after traveling and laboring together for almost seven years, these renowned men and mighty Apostles so fiercely disputed on a question of expediency as to separate from each other and never again to labor in the same field conjointly for any length of time. Barnabas and Mark turned their faces to Cyprus, the country of their kindred; while Paul and Silas directed their course through Syria to Cilicia, the province of Paul's nativity.
Silas and Sylvanus are certainly two names for the same person. Silas and Tertius, (Rom. xvi. 22.) are the same person. Silas signifies the third; and when writing, as Paul's amanuensis, to the Latin church in Rome, he translates his name by Tertius which in that tongue signifies the third. He first appears as a chief brother in the Jerusalem congregation, where most of the renowned chiefs in the christian army received their christian education. He was made an Apostle from that church (Acts xv. 29.) in the mission to the Gentiles in Antioch. Paul chose him as a companion after his separation  from Barnabas; and being recommended to the favor of God by the congregation in Antioch, in Syria, he travels with Paul as an Apostle in the room of Barnabas. They make a tour through two provinces, Syria and Cilicia, before a third person was associated with them.
Timothy, or Timotheus, joins them at Derbe. Paul circumcises him because of the Jewish prejudice, and chooses him as a companion, who, with Luke and Silas, accompany him for some time. Paul recommends him as "his fellow-laborer," as "a minister of God," and the brethren receive him and sustain him as such.
It would appear that not any of the epistles now extant were written by Paul during the years in which he and Barnabas labored together. The first epistle to the Thessalonians, most probably the most ancient of all the apostolic epistles, was written while Sylvanus and Timotheus were his companions and fellow-laborers. Sylvanus being well recommended by the brethren in Jerusalem, and Timothy by the brethren in Lystra and Iconium, and both of them equally called with Paul in a vision from the Lord to go into Macedonia to preach the gospel, Paul hesitated not in the inscription of his letter to the Thessalonians, to associate them with himself, and to call them in common with himself Apostles of Christ; (ch. ii, ver. 6, 1st Ep.) for so they were to the Macedonians. To no other church does he thus speak of either of them. In his letter to the Corinthians he calls himself an Apostle and Timothy a brother. In his letter to the Philippians he styles himself and Timothy the servants of Jesus Christ; and to the Colossians and Philemon he introduces Timothy as a brother.
Epaphras being a contraction for Epaphroditus, as Demas is for Demetrius, is supposed to be the same person called Epaphroditus in the letter to the Philippians. He was a member of the church in Colosse, and in that letter is called Epaphras, while in that to the Philippians he is called Epaphroditus. He is styled the Apostle of the Philippians and a faithful minister for the Colossians,
Thus from the Acts of the Apostles and the Epistles, we learn that any person sent by God was called his Apostle. One sent by Jesus Christ was his Apostle, and one sent by a congregation, was the Apostle of the congregations that sent him. The original word apostolos is found in these three acceptations in the New Testament. Any one sent by Jesus Christ to preach the gospel to those who had not before heard it; whether that sending was by a command of the Holy Spirit, as in the case of Barnabas, or by the congregations with the choice of the Apostles, as in the case of Silas and Timothy, was in a subordinate sense called an Apostle of Christ. So far the New Testament bears witness. But in the full official import of the term in its primary signification, it applied only to Moses, Jesus Christ, and the twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ. Paul, as high in office as any of the twelve, felt and acknowledged the difficulty of applying this term  to himself in its primary official import. He was born too late; yet that deficiency was more than compensated by the abundance of visions, revelations, and powers with which he was distinguished. At present we have three orders of Apostles--those sent by men in the flesh; those sent out by the congregations; and those sent by themselves. The first is an Apostle of men; the second, an Apostle of the church that sends him the third is an Apostle of himself. As for succession in this office, there never was such an idea suggested in the New or Old Testament. Moses had none; Jesus Christ had none; the twelve Apostles had none; Silas, Timothy, and Epaphroditus had none. Our present Charge des Affaires at the Court of St. James is as fully the successor of the Apostles to Ghent, who finished the last treaty of peace with Great Britain, as is any man now living the successor of the Apostles Peter or Paul.
REMARKS ON PHILALETHES.
Dear brother Campbell,
I HAVE read the criticism of Philalethes on "Matheteuo" over and over again, and cannot for my life see that in his views, he departs materially from the views of baptism which have been exhibited by yourself and others, and which, in fact, were exhibited by the Apostles themselves. It is "Matheteuo" as used in what is generally called the apostolic commission or (as Philalethes will have it) command to which our attention is particularly called:--and to what conclusion does P. bring the matter? Why, that we are to understand this term by the context, and that this context shows that the command to the Apostles was to go forth and "induce the nations" to become not secret or private disciples but open and avowed disciples. The inevitable inference is, that the Apostles could not have been considered as having fulfilled their commission or "command," unless they had made such disciples as are contemplated by the commission. Philalethes' views, then, are, that unimmersed disciples, however "real," are not such disciples as the Apostles were commanded to make; and although an individual might know privately that he was a "real" disciple of Christ, yet he would not have been recognized as such by the Apostles unless baptized. This brings us then to ask this question--Who would be right in this matter--the private individual or the Apostles? The unimmersed person says, I know I am a "real" disciple. The Apostles say, We cannot consider you as such; you are not such disciples as we were charged to make. "Not he who commendeth himself is approved, but whom the Lord commendeth." I say, then, Philalethes' views are, that no unimmersed person can be such a disciple as the Apostles were commanded to make; and therefore none of us who acknowledge the authority of the Apostles, and who have contended that a disciple is not made until immersed, need alter our course in this matter. It is true that P. uses the words "real" and "hypocrite" in such a way as rather to cast dust into our eyes while reading his learned production: but let us, little folk, not  be alarmed; Philalethes is still with us; let us go on, and make disciples, "immersing them, and teaching them to observe all things whatsoever Christ commanded," even though some should hanker round the school, and hear the lessons which are given, and become good scholars without ever having entered the school. One question, however, I would leave with P. before I leave this part of the subject. He considers "obedience" as one of the "elements" of a christian, and doubtless means obedience to the gospel. Will he please inform us whether an unimmersed person, under any circumstances, has obeyed the gospel! And "if his answer be affirmative, he is requested to specify the evidence which has engendered in his mind this conviction or belief."
The above I offer as a commentary (seeing commentaries are fashionable) in part, upon the production under consideration. This I should not have ventured upon, had it not been that some of our opponents in this quarter, as well as our good friend and brother "John," seem to think that our learned old Scotch brother has flown the way, or rather dissents materially from us in this matter. It is true, I fear, John will feel rather sore! after the severe (what shall I call it?) castigation of our good old brother. But I hope he will bear it patiently, and recollect that it is one of the privileges of the aged not to be very ceremonious to the young, especially when the odds of learning are, as they seem to be in this case, so much on the side of age. I say, then, to John, faint not under this rebuke, but bear it with patience.
But, sir, although I thus speak to John, and prescribe this line of conduct to myself, let us not be so modest as not to acknowledge that, unless P. will give us a concordance, we are utterly unable to make such a commentary on the 14th and 15th paragraphs of "Philalethes' Strictures on John" as will not conflict with the general tenor of his communications in the second and third numbers of the 2d vol. of the Harbinger, particularly the 15th paragraph. Will Philalethes be pleased to show how to reconcile the following quotations? Harbinger, vol. 2. page 131. "The saints have not only the information necessary to enable them to perform their Master's work with dignity and success, within their own minds, but they have an infallible medium of instrument of communication provided and prepared for their use, and actually put into their hands, externally, even God's own unadulterated, unmixed message, contained in sacred writ." Vol. iii. p. 59th. "But we cannot forbear to pity and feel for the man, who, without any better authority than a blundering translation, ventures to assure his fellow-creatures, that he is publishing to them God's message, and nothing but God's message?" I forbear to make any remark on the above, save that they appear to me contradictory. I beg Philalethes will, in the spirit of meekness, find from the abundance of his superior knowledge and literary attainments, show us how to reconcile these apparent contradictions. His object in writing is, I presume, to enlighten his brethren; and surely he ought to explain what we cannot understand. Let not Philalethes consider this  as sarcasm; it is dictated in the spirit of candor. It is true, after all the light that can be elicited shall have been thrown on the subject, I shall feel bound to use my own mind in deciding it. This is not only the privilege but the bounden duty of every intelligent being; and he who leaves this guide, flies from the standard around which his great leader and commander has commanded him to rally. We must "approve all things, and hold fast that which is good."
It may, perhaps, appear that the rules of decorum would have dictated that Philalethes and John should have been left to themselves; but as when in company a conversation occurs between two individuals, a third person present, feeling interested; frequently joins in, without being considered as violating the rules of decorum: so it is hoped it may appear on the present occasion.
I still like to appear in the humble guise of
CO-OPERATION OF CHURCHES--No. V.
[Containing Correspondence between A. B. G. & F. W. E.]
|October 29th, 1831.|
YOURS came duly to hand. I was gratified to hear of your safe arrival at ------ and comfortable prospects afterwards. But I am exceedingly jealous over you and all my brethren, as I see by the last Harbinger (No. 10. Vol. ii.) an association in embryo. It was from exactly such a beginning that the many-headed monster grew. There never was, and there never can be, any occasion for such a combination of "the churches" to build up the Redeemer's kingdom. His kingdom is built--is come. His church is one. To convert the world is no part of their business; no object of their anxiety nor solicitude. The Apostles did their own work, and neither had, nor needed, any successors. If they have no successors in office, they certainly can have none in business. They preached the gospel to all the world. They were the fathers of the gospel age--the heads of the tribes of spiritual Israel. They drew the line as wise master builders, and laid the foundation. Jerusalem was built compact together: her walls salvation--her gates praise. So is she a "strong city:" the everlasting arms are under her, and the Eternal God her refuge. Her watchmen see eye to eye--together do they sing. Her King is in the midst of her. Her law is the spirit of life, love, and liberty; her form of doctrine in the Scriptures of truth; her garner is full, affording all manner of "store; the inhabitant says not, "I am sick;" all the gifts possessed by the church are for her edification; all the divine knowledge, wisdom, love, faith, hope, energy, courage, &c. are bound to the church; they cannot be exercised out of it. Each individual is a component part of the body. The whole church, in the order of the gospel, is a city on a hill--a light which cannot be hid.  There is exhibited--there is manifested the temperance,, meekness, brotherly love, watchfulness, honesty, truth, wisdom, &c. of the spirit of Christ; and each one according to his gift, and the things of which he is made a steward, ministers to the edification of the whole, in good works, as commanded in the Scriptures, viz. gospel faith by gospel obedience, love by feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and visiting the sick and in prison. The love of Christ will bring them together in as great numbers and as often as may be. The Apostles are a standing committee who have reported and been accepted on every question that can arise in the church of God. They therefore need no committee of contrivances--no reverend bench of bishops--no college of cardinals--no synod--no consociation--nor association to manage their affairs; and no church can divest themselves of their own proper standing to become a part of any other body. That body must have more than one head who can spare any members to make committees on any occasion. I am jealous of any form or body of which the pattern is not in the Scriptures. It will certainly be a monster. Just look over the New Testament, and see where the church is required to send the gospel, or where any but the Apostles were ever authorized to labor in the word or doctrine out of the church. Note the places and send me word, and I will attend to them and write my views. But I stand on the word of the Lord; and we as a church have been excommunicated from the fellowship of the churches at the last session of the New Haven Association for sundry heresies of which we have not been informed. We were not summoned to attend court, and were cut off where we never were grafted on: "We have a law, and by our law, we ought to die." Jews. But we rejoice in the Lord, and count the reproach of Christ worth more than all the treasures of Egypt. There is a body or grade of men called "Baptist Ministers," who are not a whit behind the most malicious adversaries of the church. They are proud, knowing nothing. They want great salaries, running greedily in the way of Balaam, and they will perish like Korah. The language of the Spirit is, "So let all thine enemies perish, O Lord? My soul has no fellowship with them. They love in word and tongue, but not in deed and truth. Through grace my honor is not united to their assembly, lest my years be given to the cruel, my labor to others, my strength and honor to a stranger,"
|A. B. G.|
|January 7th, 1832.|
Dear brother G------,
YOUR favor of the 29th of October ult. was received on the 28th November, one month after date. I did not then calculate that two months more would pass before you would receive my reply: but tempus fugit--time flies away. We were happy again to hear from you, and much interested in the contents of your epistle, with the doctrine of which, for the most part, I most heartily accord, if there  be any difference between us, it is chiefly on one of your starting points, to wit:--"To convert the world is no part of their [the church's] business--no object of their anxiety or solicitude." If it be not the church's business to convert the world; whose is it? Not any other society's surely. But, perhaps, the proper antecedent of "their" in the above extract, is not church's, but "combination of churches." If so, we are at one here. I, too, have been jealous of this co-operation scheme, and am still exceedingly afraid of all representative bodies, associations, synods, general assemblies, &c. &c. whose professed object is 'the advancement of the Redeemers kingdom.' The church of Christ,--the church 'in propria forma,' and 'in her members scattered abroad,' having the living Oracle in their hearts and hands, exhibiting its teachings by word and deed, I am fully persuaded, is the institution, and the only institution authorized of Heaven for this purpose; and, therefore, all-sufficient. My name and honor, I thank the Lord, are now united to none other. We agree perfectly in this, that 'the reign of Messiah has already come--that the Apostles did their own work, and neither had nor needed any successors.' We agree in this, that 'No church can divest itself of its own proper standing to become a part of any other body." But do we, or do we not, agree in all the proper works of the church? You say, "Just look over the New Testament and see where the church is required to send the gospel, or where any but the Apostles were ever authorized to labor in the word or doctrine out of the church." I consider the following, from the Saviour's sermon on the mount, as equally applicable to all his followers. "You are the light of the world. A city situate on a mountain must be conspicuous. A lamp is lighted to be put, not under a corn-measure, but on a stand, that it may shine to all the family. Thus let your light shine before men, that they seeing your good actions, may glorify your Father who is in heaven." [Matth. ch, v.] Stephen the Deacon was not an Apostle. [Acts vii.] nor was Philip the Evangelist. ch, viii.] Their example, together with that of the many, who were dispersed through the regions of Judea and Samaria, on account of the first great persecution against the congregation in Jerusalem,--answer with me instead of commands; or, rather, coincide with, "Let him that hears say, Come." [Rev. xxii.] and "He that turns back a sinner from the error of his way, will save a soul from death, and will cover a multitude of sins." [James v.] How very irrelevant this last passage to prove 'that any but the Apostles were ever authorized to labor in word or doctrine out of the church!' But may not one, who is called a brother, so far err from the truth, as to be delivered unto Satan?
Answer.--Yes. See 1 Cor. v. 5. Well, then, as James does not limit his apostacy--as the brother might even come up in sinning to the number of seventy times seven, and be counted as a heathen man and publican; the conversion of such a sinner being authorized, why not that of any other? "They that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness, as the stars forever and ever." [Dan. xii 3,] I would say, therefore  let every disciple consider himself not as a servant, merely; but a son, a king and a priest--let him approach boldly to a throne of grace, and offer up his sacrifices of thanksgiving and praise--let him press upon all, with whom he has influence, the all-important subject of salvation through the Lord Jesus Christ let him exhibit the evidences to produce faith, and then urge obedience--"Reform, and be each of you immersed in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit." Let him neither promise, nor expect, any physical or mystic influences to accompany his preachings: nor any thing independent of these and the word, to convert men; but, with a common blessing, relying on the mighty truth alone, let him exhibit the testimony, and it will perform its own work. The truth--the truth as it is in Jesus, rightly apprehended, will convict, convert, and sanctify. How changed my views on this subject, from what they once were! Once I preached--
1st. The Holy Spirit,
|"The spirit, like some heavenly wind,
Breathes on the sons of flesh;
New-models all the carnal mind,
And forms the man afresh."
2d. Repentance; which I defined to be incipient godly sorrow.
4th. Remission or Justification, and Sanctification in part.
5th. Baptism; and
6th. Entire Sanctification at Death, and Eternal Life.
How different the tune played upon the same strings! How different, too, the string! Repentance is not Reformation: nor is Justification and Sanctification in part, the Remission of Paul and Peter. But I most draw my letter to a close.
Hoping, by this time, your health is quite restored, as that you may yet live and labor in the best of causes, I remain yours, In the bonds of the gospel.
|F. W. E.|
LOGIC AND CANDOR OF UNIVERSALISM--EXAMINED.
THE Editors of the "star and Sentinel of the West;' have not as yet published my No. 1, page 80, vol. 3. headed "Logic and Candor of Universalism Examined." Instead of a compliance with their own proposition in the following words! "If Mr. Campbell dare to make the attempt to show that Unitarian Universalist preachers hold to any one point of doctrine with which he implicates them in his attempt to correct 'an evil report,' our columns are at his service; and if he refuses this INVITATION to justify his conduct, the christian public will say that our remarks are not uncharitable, and judge of Mr. Campbell according to his works;" they have given us more than four columns of abuse, without the semblance of an argument and did not "dare" (to use their own term) to let their readers hear my examination of their logic and candor until they treated them with a  vial of the musk of Universalism by way of antidote. By turning over to page 530, vol. 2, the reader will see that the preceding proposition is unaccompanied with any proviso or condition whatever.
The conditions which I propose, page 534, vol. 2, were declared by Mr. Ballou himself to be fair and equitable. But instead of complying with these, some ex post facto conditions were proposed by these chivalrous editors in their paper of the 14th February. One of these conditions is that I publish in the Harbinger all their pieces; or to give their own words: "1. Our columns shall be open to Mr. Campbell's pieces so long as he publishes ours in the Harbinger." This was in fact eating up or recalling the proposition which brought me out. Now the gentlemen have the hardihood to tell their readers that I have backed out, or something tantamount thereunto.
I did intend to publish, as my manner is, the pieces they might write in support of their theory, should they be couched in decent language and pertinent to the subject. My general, if not universal custom, was pledge of this; and as they did not at first demand it, I did not propose it. I had, I confess, but superficially glanced over their pages for some months before; but from that slight attention which I had bestowed upon their productions, I conceived that they owed more of their success with the public to their address, than to their logic or biblical attainments; and that they did not fail to whip with scorpions, in their own braggart way, the unfortunate victims of their universal benevolence, who dared to use the word hell in defiance of all they had said against that offensive monosyllable.
I did not much like, it is true, to fill some twenty pages per month with such matter as I generally saw in this Occidental Star; and I know full well that unless I obtained some definite proposition and some definite proof, it would be an augean task to follow them from Lizzard Land's End to the Elysian Phantasma, which lies as near their Hades as is Tartarus and the sluggish Acheron to the occiduous horizon in which their planet sheds its crepusculous rays upon the intellectual owls and bats which wing their sportive flight in the glimmerings of eventide.
More than four columns of brevier are filled in their last paper before me, without one proposition or argument in reference, direct or indirect, to their peculiar system of universal holiness and salvation. And although unconditioned on my part, I republished their first piece as a specimen of the good manners of universal benevolence, and in my No. 1. copied every word which, on any rule of interpretation known to me, I could regard as a reply to my first notice, they have not yet published my first number in redemption of my proposition. Some detached and garbled sentences are strewed through their declamations about my cowardice, and my representing the Bible as an augean stable!!
To prevent, if possible, such exhibitions of human folly and imbecility, I informed them in my No. 1. that "I would make no reply to any thing of that sort;" and as I do not intend to reply, I will republish nothing which is not in keeping with some pretensions to reason  and argument. They may more hopefully challenge an orthodox Quaker to fight with a blunderbuss, than myself to meet them on the arena which they now open to my view. They may again and again reiterate the calumny or charge, if they please so to call it, that I am, from conscious inability or cowardice, afraid to sustain what they call my charge, my slander, or my "pledge," in reference to Unitarian Universalism, although in conclusion of my No. 1. I tell them "I am about to sustain all that I have said of Unitarian Universalism:"--I say they may, without even a formal contradiction on my part, amuse their readers with such tricks; but let them explain themselves or refuse positively to tender any proposition or proof except the whole Bible, and then I shall feel myself at liberty either to meet them on their own proposition, or to infer their views from what they have already written and published on this subject.
My conditions, I think, show on the face of them, that, as they pretend to be misrepresented and slandered, I wished for a definite understanding of their peculiar system of universalism in their own most matured terms and phrases, that we might not degenerate into a mere logo mache, or roam over immense regions of speculation. It was no advantage over them as to the affirmative or negative side of the discussion which we sought in those conditions. We do not regard them or their cause as so herculean as to stipulate for any arrangement giving to us any advantage. They may have their own terms, provided they will submit any definite proposition and numerically arrange their arguments, so that we may know when any one point is fully examined; or if they say they do not like to hazard this, and allow us to take up their back numbers and choose their former propositions, with all their proofs, such as they are, they have only to say so, and the matter is settled. We thought, and still think, the opportunity we gave them was generous, if not magnanimous: not to take the advantage of their many loose and extravagant assertions and mock proofs, but to allow them to choose the most guarded and definite expressions, which, in their most deliberate consideration, they may judge tenable. But if they continue to withhold my pieces from their readers, I need not attempt to prove that they have repented of their challenge. Every argument of theirs to which I reply shall appear in full in the pages of the Harbinger. If their pieces are all argumentative they shall be published in full; but if otherwise, we shall use our own discretion on the subject. I again conclude by repeating my conviction that Universalism (and I will add, that plead by this Western Star,) is not less mischievous than Deism in its tendency upon society, and that it is wholly destitute of any countenance or support from the Author of the Christian Religion or any of his Apostles.
ONE ARGUMENT FOR THE INSPIRATION OF THE
APOSTLES, WHICH NO SCEPTIC CAN EVADE.
THE apostacy of the Papists from the truth as it is in Jesus! is so clearly revealed beforehand In the scriptures, that the great Dr.  Clarke would have no hesitation in resting the proof of Christianity on the fulfilment of these predictions in the corruptions of the Romish church. During the prophetical period of twelve hundred and sixty years, "when Daniel, I say, foretels such a tyrannical power to continue such a determined period of time; and St. John prophesies that the Gentiles should tread the holy city under foot forty and two months; which is exactly the same period of time as that of Daniel; and again, that two witnesses, clothed in sackcloth, should prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days; which is again exactly the very same period of time: and again, that the woman which fled into the wilderness from persecution, should continue there a thousand two hundred and threescore days: and again, that she should fly into the wilderness for a time and times and half a time; which is still the very same period: and again, that a wild beast, a tyrannical power, to whom it was given to make war with the saints, and to overcome them, was to continue forty and two months, still the very same period of time, and to have power over all kindreds, tongues, and nations, so that all that dwell upon the earth should worship him. Is it credible or possible that ignorant and enthusiastical writers should by mere chance hit upon such coincidences of occult numbers, especially as St. John could not possibly take the numbers from Daniel, if he understood Daniel to mean nothing more than the short persecution of Antiochus. And if he did understand Daniel to mean a much longer, and greater, and more remote tyranny, which John himself prophesied of as in his time still future: then the wonder is still infinitely greater, that in those early times, when there was not the least footstep in the world of any such power as St. John distinctly describes, (but which now is very conspicuous, as I shall presently observe more particularly,) it should ever enter the heart of man to conceive so much of the possibility of such a power sitting, not upon the pavilion of heathen persecutors, but expressly in the temple and upon the seat of God himself." After this, Clarke goes on more particularly to enumerate the prophecies relating to the popish apostacy, and their fulfillment, and draws from the whole a proof for the truth of Christianity with a force and distinctness which has been generally acknowledged. His remarks, with some omissions, on account of the length of the passage, are as follows:--"Daniel foretells a kingdom upon the earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, diverse from all that were before it, exceeding dreadful, and shall devour the whole earth. That among the powers into which this kingdom shall be divided, there shall arise one power diverse from the rest, who shall subdue unto himself three of the first powers, and he shall have a mouth speaking very great things, and a look more stout than his fellows. He shall make war with the saints, and prevail against them. And he shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and think to change times and laws; and they shall be given into his hand for a long season; even till the judgment shall sit, and the kingdom under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High.  He shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every God, and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods, &c, &c. Suppose all this now to be spoken by Daniel of nothing more than the short persecution under Antiochus Epiphanes, which, that it cannot be, I have shown above; but suppose it were, and that it was all forged after the event, yet it cannot be the case of St. Paul and St. John, who describe exactly a like power, and in like words; speaking of things to come in the latter days, of things still future in their time, and of which there was then no footsteps, no appearance in the world. The day of Christ, says St. Paul, shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that Man of Sin be revealed, the son of perdition, who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped; so that he, as God, sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God:--whose coming is after the working of Satan, with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness." Again: "The Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils, (that is, for so it should be translated, doctrines concerning demons or souls of men departed;) forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, &c. St. John, in like manner, prophesies of a wild beast or tyrannical power, to whom was given great authority, and a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies: and he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God. And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them; and power was given him to overcome all kindreds, and tongues, and nations; and all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him. And he that exerciseth his power before him--doth great wonders--and deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by means of those miracles which he hath power to do. And he causeth that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark or the name of the beast. And the kings of the earth have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast; for God hath put into their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree and give their kingdoms to the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled. The name of the person in whose hands the reins or principal direction of the exercise of this power is lodged is Mystery, Babylon the Great. She is drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and by her sorceries are all nations deceived: and in her is found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that are slain upon the earth. And this person (the political person) to whom these titles and characters belong, is that great city, standing upon seven mountains, which reigneth over the kings of the earth."
"If, in the days of St. Paul and St. John, there was any footstep of any such a sort of power as this in the world; or if there ever had been any such power in the world; or if there was then any appearance of probability that could make it enter into the heart of man to imagine that there ever could he any such kind of power in the world, much less in the temple or church of God; and if there be not now such a power actually and conspicuously exercised in the world; and  if any picture of this power, drawn after the event, can now describe it more plainly and exactly than it was originally described in the words of the prophecy; then may it with some degree of plausibleness be suggested, that the prophecies are nothing more than enthusiastic imaginations."
|James Douglass, Esq.|
CORRUPTIONS OF CHRISTIANITY TERMINATING IN
AS the priesthood had an outward and inward religion, so the philosophers had an outward and an inward, philosophy. Philosophy began exactly at the point where the more refined systems of superstition ended. The earliest corruptions of religion consisted in assigning animating principles, or souls, to the elements, and the separate portions of nature. The latter, and more elaborate superstition of the priesthood was founded on the belief of one universal soul actuating the whole of nature. From this point the earliest speculations of Grecian philosophy commenced; at least that branch of it which was derived from the Egyptian. Thales, and his successors, held a mundane soul, that is, a soul immersed in matter, and actuating it from within; and it was not till the time of Anaxagoras that the doctrine of a supramundane soul was maintained, that is, of a soul actuating matter from without, unconfined, impassive, and immaterial.
Hitherto two principles were admitted in nature independent, self-originating, and ever-existing--Matter, and Mind. But the higher philosophy of the East went a step further, and simplifying the theory of existence, admitted but one original principle--Mind, of which Matter was the dark and degenerate offspring; 'Mind being the bright centre and fount of all things, but becoming gross and dim as it flowed at a distance from its source. This system of emanation prevailed over the East, and was introduced amongst the Greeks by Pythagoras. In his school it underwent some slight modifications, till at last, among the elder Eleatic sect, it passed into a still higher system, that of strict Pantheism, which not only does not admit of more than one principle, but excludes any other being than what arises from visionary and deceptive appearances, excepting only the one absolute and universal existence. Pantheism again passed into transcendental atheism, and became similar to many systems which still prevail in the East. The one existence being considered as above the reach of our comprehension, and being every way infinite, is affirmed to be without attributes and modifications! and thus to have as little affinity with mind as with matter. Hence the first cause has been termed an infinite nothing. These doctrines passed on the one side into the absolute and universal skepticism of Pyrrhonism, and on the other into the opposite system of atomic atheism, which, going to the contrary extreme, admitted of no existence but that which came within the sphere of the senses. 
Thus the world by wisdom knew not God; the more they reasoned the more they departed from the truth. "When they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful, but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools." Nothing can be more striking than the incongruity and absurdity of the notions and arguments of the most eminent men of antiquity in their attempts to reason on the nature of the First Cause. This is exhibited within a short compass in Cicero's eloquent treatise concerning the nature of the gods. No doubt their absurdities lose nothing by passing through his hands, and had they been accompanied by the elaborate trains of reasoning which led to them, they would have appeared more specious than when represented in the nakedness of their ridiculous and jarring conclusions. Still these conclusions are presented by Cicero with considerable accuracy, and with great beauty and spirit; and afford an admirable commentary to St. Paul's remarks on Gentile wisdom.
It is true that Socrates, in his striking and original efforts to discover truth, promised to bring back the philosophy of Greece to saner views; but though the genius of Socrates lent its coloring to many of the systems which followed him, yet his sobriety of investigation had few imitators. Plato added the dreams and wonders of Pythagoras to the more practical tenets of his master, and lost himself in his favorite ideal world, instead of looking at existence in its actual condition. Nor were the varying and contradictory opinions of Aristotle concerning the First Mover, though more destitute of imagination, on that account, nearer to the truth. Many of the Stoic dogmas, though sounding high and plausible concerning the divine nature, are yet found, when examined upon the genuine principles of their philosophy, to have more show than significance. Nor was there any hope of amendment in new systems springing up, for the Grecians were continually reasoning upon false principles, and the more accurately they reasoned, the more erroneous and monstrous were their conclusions.
The best and most correct opinions concerning religion which the ancients possessed, were those which were handed down to them from remote antiquity, which were celebrated in the writings of their moral poets, and which their legislators adopted and inculcated in order to give a sanction to their law, These form the outer doctrines of philosophy, and are very superior to the tenets of the inner school. In these outer doctrines, the philosophers considered not what was true, but what was useful; and they showed themselves much better judges of utility than of truth. They were ignorant of the simple demonstration which proves that general utility and truth must be forever coincident. Hence the pernicious and perplexing division of their doctrines into the exoteric and esoteric: the first adapted to the world at large: the second hurtful, if generally promulgated but which might be revealed to the few who were devoted to the pursuit of wisdom. Thus in their own estimation, their whole stock of opinions were made up of useful errors and dangerous truths. But in the  absence of just principles, as it is more easy to discover what is useful than what is true, their supposed errors were often truths, and their supposed truths were always errors.
Entangled in the web of their own double doctrine; and at best, by no means remarkable, notwithstanding their genius, even in their most lucid moments, for perspicuity and consistency, they expressed themselves so vaguely and figuratively, that they leave ample room for the conjectures, disputes, and mistakes of commentators. We are principally indebted to the vigorous mind and sagacious learning of Warburton for first pointing out determinately the real opinions of the ancient philosophers respecting the nature of the Deity and of the soul, and also for placing in the clearest light the ultimate principle upon which these reasonings proceeded.
The philosophy of the ancients took its form and character from the entire ignorance of the principle of creation, and from their denial of the possibility of any other change than a change of form, and the giving a new mould to pre-existing materials. Thus whatever had real existence was eternal; it was only the modifications of that existence which were temporary. Hence the belief that matter and mind were both of them self-existing and ever-enduring; and hence the obvious conclusion that all finite souls were but rays emitted from the Original Mind, and would soon return to the ocean from which they had been for a moment exhaled.
But the doctrine of two principles yielded to the belief of one principle, as being a more harmonious and comprehensive scheme of philosophy, and hence Pantheism, or the considering the universe as God, the one and only true existence, has chiefly prevailed in all ages and countries where revelation has been unknown.
In the scheme of Pantheism, the great difficulty is to account for finite existence; this has given rise to two systems, emanative philosophy, and Pantheism strictly so called. The emanative philosophy considers all changes as taking place in the divine substance itself; but Pantheism considers all changes to be merely deceptions, yet it fails to account for the origin of illusion, nor can it explain in what manner this can have any place in the Infinite Mind, The system of emanation has most generally prevailed; it is not only found in numerous schools of philosophy, but many of the ancient superstitions have been remodelled on its basis. The mythology of the Hindoos has been recast upon this model by the ancient Braminical priesthood, while the opposing doctrines of Boudh derive their character from Pantheism strictly so called. These systems have reappeared in modern times, both in the East and in the West, and have given rise to peculiar modifications in mystical devotion, which shall afterwards be noticed. It is thus that opinions descend lower and lower in the scale of mind, and that the errors of ancient genius become the heresies of modern sectarians.
Thus we observe, that the great and ever-recurring error of the ancients proceeds from their ignorance of creation. The substance  of all things they supposed to be necessarily eternal. Forms might be changed, but essences were forever the same; and all essences were but one essence, the one eternal and unbounded existence.--Possessed with this false principle, the more they reasoned upon it, the deeper they sunk into error; it haunted them on every side, and blinded them to every sane notion of God, of nature, and of themselves. It is the view which all reasoners unacquainted with revelation have taken of existence; and it is the view into which men have ever a tendency to relapse whenever they trust to their own reason, and are not guided implicitly by revelation in their speculations concerning the Divine Being. There was not the least prospect that the Gentile philosophers could ever have shaken off this error, unless they had been furnished with a strength not their own. All their flights of speculation, all their ceaseless inquiries and discussions, served only to rivet more firmly upon them the maxim that from nothing, nothing could be produced. No strength of understanding availed them to find out the truth; once departing from the right way, the more rapidly and prosperously they proceeded, the more inextricably they were involved in error; nor was the prospect brighter for any future and distant age. One theory, indeed, rapidly gave place to a succeeding one; but all theories were erected upon the false basis, and were merely modifications and expansions of the same fundamental mistake. Nor when invention was exhausted, and new theories ceased to be brought forward, was any approach made to the discovery of the truth, The strength of mind which had expended itself in originality, was, in after ages, employed in defending the errors of others; and the genius of Greece not only proved that the highest efforts of the human mind, when unassisted from on high, were unavailing to find out the true God; but they also enchained the understandings of other nations, and future ages, to submit, in blind acquiescence, to the authority and maxims of Grecian philosophy.
If ever truth could have been discovered and excogitated by the human mind itself, it must have been in the favored times and situation of Greece; the human faculties were then in the full stretch of exertion, and had reached the highest point of enthusiasm and power. The Greeks are far too favorable a sample of the unassisted understanding of man; they were placed in peculiar circumstances by Providence to show that the mind of man, in its very best estate, is, when trusting to itself, but emptiness and vanity; that there is no true knowledge of nature to be obtained, except by humble and patient investigation; and no true knowledge of God, except by child-like docility, and humble attention, to what he himself is pleased to reveal.
Neither in latter days has the mind of man gained in strength, though it has in information; as soon as it departs even now from revelation, though surrounded on all sides by light, it immediately falls into the same darkness, and the same errors. The infidel writers in modern times, as we shall afterwards have occasion to notice,  have run into the same absurdities respecting the First Cause, and the nature and origin of existence, without having the knowledge and sagacity of the Grecian philosophers, to defend and to conceal their blunders. Even those who receive revelation, but who presume to be wise above what is written, the moment they leave the inspired record, and speculate upon things which are not revealed, share also in the common lot, and amply prove, by their weakness and their errors, that it is the Bible, and the Bible alone; where we are to find all our information respecting our author and our end,--respecting the character of God as our Judge and our Saviour,--respecting that heavenly inheritance which is awaiting every believer in the Lord Jesus after death has removed him from this transitory state.
The more we consider the highest efforts of the human understanding, the more we shall perceive its feebleness, and the narrow limits which confine it; and the more, also, we shall perceive, with increasing evidence, that the scriptures are the word of God, and not of man. The very first verse of Genesis is impressed with the stamp of its divine original; the reception of it alone would have overturned all the fundamental errors which perplexed the philosophy of Greece, and not of Greece only, but of all countries not enlightened by revelation. The Jews had obtained the knowledge of the true God, and with it the principle of true philosophy, which considers nature not as a necessary existence, but as the creature and handmaid of the Almighty, and the laws of nature, not as the unalterable conditions of being, but as the manner in which unchangeable Wisdom operates to confer the highest benefits, and clearly to manifest his preservation and government of the world.
Here we may see the difference between that which is discoverable by reason, and that which is demonstrable by reason when once discovered. None of the reasoners of Greece, by the force of their natural powers, were able to discern that the world was not formed out of pre-existing materials, but that it received the commencement of its being, as well as the mode of it, by the fiat of the divine will. But, after revelation clearly manifested that all things were created by God, many christian writers, and amongst the rest Dr. Clarke, in his well-known treatise on the divine attributes, has forcibly proved, by the light of reason alone, that the world was not only formed, but created by its Almighty Author. This view gives a totally different aspect to all things, and removes the creation to an infinite distance from the Creator. There is no longer any room for the imaginary universe of the Pantheists. Jehovah, the self-existent and all-perfect being, with the worlds which he created, and which he is ever ruling, alone meets our view. Though intimately present with all his works, he is yet entirely distinct from them. In him we live, and move, and have our being. He is infinitely nigh to us, and he is intimately present with us, while we remain infinitely distant from his all-perfect and incommunicable essence.
|J. Douglass, Esq. |
PROPHETIC PERSONAGES--HISTORIC PROPHECY, No, II.
THE FIERY OR RED DRAGON.
AS a he goat was the national military standard of the Greeks, so a purple or red dragon was the national military standard of the Romans. Every Roman legion consisted of ten cohorts. The first standard of the whole legion was an eagle which the Æquilifer bore, and the Draconii carried the dragons; so that in a Roman legion there were ten dragons for one eagle. The purpureum signum Draconis, or the purple standard of the Dragon, is mentioned by A. Marcellinus. Several Roman Writers mention the dragon as a Roman standard, See Vegetius, lib. 2, c. 7.
Horapollo, an Egyptian writer on hieroglyphics whose work was translated into Greek, and Manetho, a priest of Heliopolis, who flourished before Christ 250 years, are quoted by interpreters to prove that the figure of a serpent, was the established emblem of a king; that yk, which in the Egyptian language signifies a serpent, in the sacred style signifies a king Achmet also informs us that the dragon was regarded by the Persians and Indians as the established emblem of a monarch. The fiery or red dragon, mentioned Rev. xii, in the following words, "And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red (fiery) dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads"--is, from the preceding premises, generally agreed to be the symbol of the Roman Empire in its Pagan form.
Rome in its heathen form had no less than seven distinct heads or forms of government, as enumerated by her own writers, Tacitus and Livy. She was under, 1st. the Regal power; 2d. the Consulate; 3d. the Dictatorship; 4th. the Decemvirate; 5th. the consular power of Military Tribunes; 6th. the Triumvirate; and 7th. the Imperial Government. Some commentators substitute the semi-imperial for the triumvirate, and place the imperial as the sixth head. But this without authority; for the triumvirate was distinct from any of the others, as the others are from one another. Kings and Consuls are not more distinct than Consuls and Triumvirs. Tacitus in his Annals, lib. 1, thus describes the seven heads:--The city of Rome was originally governed by kings. L. Brutus instituted liberty and the consulate. The dictatorship was only occasionally appointed, neither did the decemviral power last above two years, and the consular power of the military tribunes was not of long continuance. Neither had Cinna nor Sylla a long domination. The power of Pompey and Crassus was also soon absorbed in that of Cesar, and the arms of Lepidus and Anthony yielded to those of Augustus."
The difficulty about the head which was wounded to death, has led commentators to a confounding of the obvious distinction above noted. But this difficulty is removed by regarding the seventh Draconic head as the sixth head of the beast which arose out of the sea; which in the sequel will appear to be correct. 
THE DRAGON'S TAIL.
A religion, like the heathen, founded entirely in fable, is very appropriately exhibited by a fabulous beast, such as the Dragon of the poets; but regarding the dragon as a literal serpent, its tail very justly represents (in the Hebrew idiom always the hindmost part) the seventh or last form of government of Pagan Rome. At the time of the seventh head the world, then the Roman empire, consisted of three parts, Jews, Gentiles, and Christians. Formerly it was composed of but Jews and Gentiles. The stars of heaven are always, in symbolic style, the luminaries and ministers of the governing power. Heaven is God's throne in the ancient oracles; and in symbols it is the established government, whether secular or ecclesiastical. The Stars of the Roman heaven, a third part of the whole heaven, were embraced and prostrated by the seventh or imperial head, the tail of the dragon. But to complete the view which John gives of this dragon we must follow his method and here take a view of
THE WOMAN CLOTHED WITH THE SUN.
"It requireth little knowledge of scripture to discover that the church is here denoted under the emblem, of the woman, and Christ the seed of the woman under the emblem of her child, who is to rule all nations with a rod of iron. She is clothed with the sun; the moon is under her feet, (where the name of a picture or statue is wont to be written,) in order to designate her, the moon being the emblematical writing for the church, when the sun is the emblem of Christ. For when the sun denotes the husband, the moon denotes the wife, the sun the king, the moon the queen; in which relations Christ and his church are continually presented. And she hath a diadem upon her brow of twelve stars, the twelve Apostles of the church. The dragon, carnage-colored, having crowns upon the heads, but no crowns upon the horns, signifies Rome, in her imperial state, before she fell into ten kingdoms. And the whole hieroglyphical picture is the representation of the attitude which the devil, in his royal and imperial attire of old Rome, took against the seed of the woman, the Son of God, who became flesh."--
"Following onward, therefore, in the hieroglyphical history of the woman, we find that the scene shifteth to heaven, where a hot war ensues, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon and his angels: and that old serpent, called the Devil and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world, is cast out into the earth, and his angels are cast out with him. This taketh place when the seed of the woman is caught up into heaven, and though it be out of human vision, and in a manner out of the field of human anxiety, our Lord gave to the seventy tidings of this fall of Satan, when he said, "I beheld Satan fall like lightning from heaven."--But into this mysterious transmigration of Satan's malice and power from heaven to earth, we inquire not further, lest it should lead us away from that historical event which ensued upon his coming down to the earth with whetted weapons against the woman, whose child by death did conquer him that had  the power of death, and, as the first fruits of his conquest, did cast him out of his heavenly place, and deprived him of his ancient privilege of bringing railing accusations against the sons of God.
"And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man-child. And to the woman were given the wings of a great eagle, that she might flee into the wilderness into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent. And the serpent cast out of his mouth waters as a flood, after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth. And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and the testimony of Jesus Christ." The dragon taking his form of seven heads and ten horns, that is, inspiriting the Roman empire, did commence a most savage warfare with the woman, from the moment he was cast out into the earth; which took effect, as we see in the Acts of the Apostles, by imprisonments, bloodsheddings, stonings, banishments, and every form of destructiveness; and thereafter, through the space of two centuries, in ten regular persecutions appointed by imperial edicts over the wide empire. "The earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth." Which being rendered, according to the meaning of the emblems, is, that when the woman had made her retreat to the fastnesses of her faith, the serpent poured out of his mouth peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues, in order to sweep her from her place, or destroy the refuge of her faith. Whereupon the empire encountered these nations, and destroyed that whereby Satan had hoped to prevail, and left the church in her secure place. The event therefore is the encounter of the empire with these nations whom Satan directed against the strong hold of the church; which is one of the most conspicuous events in the history of christendom." So says a late interpreter of prophecy.
The dragon is here called the old serpent, the Devil and Satan; because, no doubt, the spirit which actuated Pagan Rome was this evil spirit, which has always opposed Jesus and his people by whatever agents or means he could control.
THE TEN HORNED BEAST.
"And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a savage beast ascending out of the sea, having seven heads, and ten horns; and upon his horns were ten diadems; and on his heads there were names of defamation. And the beast which I saw was like a leopard, and its feet were like those of a bear, and its mouth, like the mouth of a lion; and the dragon gave him his power, and his throne, and great authority. And I saw one of his heads wounded, as it were to death; and yet its mortal wound was healed. And the whole earth wondered and followed after the wild beast. And they worshipped the dragon, who gave authority to the wild beast, saying, 'Who is like unto the beast? who  can war against him?' And there was given to it a mouth speaking great things, and defamation: and there was given to it power to make war forty-two months. And he opened his mouth to utter defamation against God, to defame his name, and his tabernacle, and those that dwell in heaven. And it was given to him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and there was given to him power over every tribe, and tongue, and nation.
"And all the inhabitants of the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb, who was slain from the foundation of the world, If any one hath an ear to hear, let him hear. If any one lead them into captivity, he shall be led into captivity: if any one slay with the sword, he shall himself be slain with the sword. Here is the perseverance and the faith of the saints."
Daniel's nondescript fourth beast appears emerging from the sea--from amid the commotions of the people. "The waters which thou sawest are peoples and multitudes." He combines in himself the attributes of the three former beasts--the lion, the bear, and the leopard; but he appears to have seven heads as well as ten horns. This more ample description presents him in more decisive characters. "The identity of these two beasts, that of Daniel, and this of John, both Romanists and Protestants alike admit." In the 17th chapter this savage beast is further characterized and explained. "The seven heads are seven hills"2 "and there are seven kings." "Kings," in prophecy, is frequently put for kingdoms and forms of government. Of these kings or governments five were fallen, one was when John saw the vision, and the beast itself, of the spirit of the seven, was the eighth. Whether we regard the "five fallen kings," &c. as many commentators have done, as the different forms of government which had obtained among the Roman people before this beast arose; viz. Kings, Consuls, Dictators, Decemvirs, Military Tribunes with consular authority, and the sixth, then existing, Emperors--and that afterwards to arise the semi-imperial; or whether we regard them as some more modern interpreters do, viz. as Assyria, Greece, Egypt, Syria, fallen, Imperial Rome then existing, the seventh the empire of Charlemagne and his German successors, it materially affects not the character of this savage wild beast. Rome was built on seven hills. It was called the City of Seven Mountains, (Septum Dominos Montes,) by a Roman classic writer of good taste. The seven heads are kingdoms or governments existing anterior to the era of the ten horns or kingdoms into which Pagan Rome was divided. The ten kingdoms into which this empire was originally divided before the birth of the little horn, were, Britain, France, Spain, Portugal, Austria, Naples, Tuscany, Lombardy, Ravenna, and Rome. These lay within the bounds of the Western Roman Empire, the ground occupied in this prophecy. "The ten horns are ten kings which have not yet received their kingdom; but they shall receive authority from the beast as kings for one hour," (contemporaneously.)  The seven heads were successive. The ten kings were all to appear together--not rising at the same instant of time, but appearing at one and the same time upon the stage; for the words mian horan mean "in the same era." To put these symbols together the beast having seven heads and ten horns is the Pagan Roman Empire which rose out of the ruins of the Grecian. It had seven successive forms of government--Kings, Consuls, Decemvirs, Military Tribunes with consular authority, Triumvirs, Emperors reigning in succession and Emperors reigning at the same time. These were all Pagan.
After the irruptions of the northern nations, it was subdivided into ten kingdoms. These were professedly christian, but so much in reality Pagan, that it was old Pagan Rome arisen in a new form, and having its throne of empire upon the same seven hills. It finally became Papal. But let it be observed that it is the custom of these historical prophets to give a full representation of an object in all its various characters, though these do not all appear at one and the same time. Thus this beast had not always the same ten horns, either in number or kind; but it once, nay! Several times, appeared in this form.
THE TWO HORNED BEAST.
"And I saw another beast ascending out of the earth, and it had two horns like a lamb; but it spake like a dragon. And it exerciseth all the power of the first beast, in its presence; and it maketh the earth, and those that dwell in it, to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. And he doeth great miracles, so as to make fire come down from heaven to earth before men: and he deceiveth the inhabitants of the earth by the signs which it is given him to do before the beast; commanding the inhabitants of the earth to make an image of the beast that had the wound of the sword and lived. And it was given to him to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast might speak, and cause as many as will not worship the image of the beast to be put to death. And he causeth all both small and great, rich and poor, freemen and slaves, to receive the mark on their right hand, or their foreheads. And that no one should be able to buy or sell, but one who has the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom: let him who has understanding compute the number of the beast; for it is the number of a man, and his number is six hundred and sixty-six."
Joseph Mede, who wrote 200 years ago, and Craddock and Durham, of 1660, and a host as powerful and as numerous as that which concur in calling the ten horned beast the secular beast, agree in calling this the ecclesiastical beast. Rome secular and Rome ecclesiastical are described by these two beasts. This rose not from the four winds striving upon the sea, nor did it come out of the political cabals of peoples and nations, but out of the earth; the corrupted antichristian part of mankind, This arose in a time of tranquility, and appeared like a lamb, emblem of the Christian King, but it spoke like a savage, like a dragon. The two horns are emblematical of the power of the corrupted priesthood, whether Papal or Protestant,  claiming both secular and spiritual power; for it exercised all the power of the first beast. It brought fire down from heaven in the sight of men, emblem of its raging persecutions. It constrained the meaner or secular government to execute its bloody decrees; and by its great power deceived the ten nations. In establishing the Inquisition the secular beast granted the ecclesiastical beast an image of itself--full power to make and execute decrees involving all the rights of men--taking away life, liberty, property, and all that is dear to man.
This two horned beast is described by John in another part of the prophecy under the character of the pseudo-teacher, or false prophet. The beast and the false prophet are three times mentioned by John and in such connexion as to show that he stands for this two horned beast. Rev. xvi. 13. xix. 30. and xx, 10. He is represented as working signs before the beast, deceiving mankind to receive the mark of the beast, and to worship his image; and they are both partakers of the same dire fortunes. The corrupt teachers of Christianity are described as bringing mankind into the most passive obedience to the ten horned beast. By their ecclesiastical decrees they permitted no man to buy or sell, to trade in their merchandise save he that had the mark, either the name of the beast, or the number of his name. He must either be enrolled as a professed admirer of the Papacy, or have what is equivalent to it, a veneration for the same sort of ecclesiastic authority. According to some this antichristian power did not attain to mankind until 666 years after the papacy was born; and they, dating the papacy in the time of Justinian, A. D. 533,and adding to this the number 666, bring the consummation of this power to the year 1199 or 1198, the year in which the Inquisition was established. But however this may be, it is certain that this two horned beast had power to give life to the image of the beast, and to cause the great mass of mankind to fall down and worship the beast and to succumb to its authority.
Such are the most current views of these prophetic symbols found in the learned labors of the interpreters. To every particular item of which it is not necessary for us to accede to understand this prominent group of emblematical personages. We, however, feel authorized, from all the premises, to express a concurrence so far as this: Rome, in its Pagan form, as respects its aspect to Christianity, stands before us portrayed in the symbol of the Red Dragon with seven crowned heads and ten horns. Rome, in its Papal form, stands before us in bold relief, in the symbol of the Savage Beast which arose out of the sea, having seven heads and ten crowned horns. The Papacy itself and all the clerical dynasties, Protestant and Papistical, are pictured out under the symbol of the two horned beast which arose out of the earth. The church, in its Christian character, is beautifully depicted by the woman in heaven clothed with the sun, having the moon under her feet, and a diadem on her head, decorated with twelve stars. Concerning other prominent symbols in the historic prophecies, and concerning other attributes of these, more will appear in the sequel.
DIALOGUE ON RE-IMMERSION.
"IN the dialogue between Alexander and Rufus, Alexander says to Rufus, "One thing I wish you to reflect upon till next we meet. It is This: "Baptism cannot he repeated unless in its full sense;" but Alexander did not say what he considered its full sense to be.
Allow Matthias, in the absence of Rufus to call Alexander's attention to the only case of re-baptism, recorded Acts XIX, Paul came to Ephesus and found certain disciples (not sinners,) therefore they were not re-baptized to make them disciples, nor for the remission of their sins, (for John's baptism was for remission of sins, and they had previously received that.) He said unto them, Have you received the Holy Spirit since you believed? They answered, We have not so much as learned whether there be any Holy Spirit.
For what purpose, then, were you baptized? (This knowledge you ought to have been in possession of at that time.)
We were baptized with John's baptism. The Holy Spirit was not given in John's day; but under the reign of Jesus Christ the believers receive it after they have been baptized in his name. When they heard this they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus; after which they received the Holy Spirit (by the imposition of the Apostle's hands.) Here, then, is a case of re-baptism for the Holy Spirit separately, and the subjects of it were disciples; and the necessity for repeating baptism was their want of knowledge relative to the Holy Spirit at the time of their first baptism."
Alexander.--IN the absence of Rufus, I will, with pleasure, consider any thing you have to advance on that proposition. The case you have adduced is a very interesting one on more accounts than that in your eye.
Matthias.--I think it is the only unequivocal case of re-immersion in the apostolic writings; and certainly every thing connected with it ought to be fully understood.
A. The perversity of system has even questioned the certainty of this case of re-immersion. The learned Dr. Gill, and some others of reputation amongst the Baptists, have attempted, in defiance of all grammatical and logical rules; to explain away this part of Luke's narrative: for I need not tell you that it is Luke who reports that "when they heard Paul say this, they were immersed into the name of the Lord Jesus."
M. You, I believe, have always contended that these men were re-baptized.
A. I took that view of the narrative in my debate with Mr, M'Calla, and have never seen any reason to question its propriety. But let me ask you, have you ever reflected upon the period of time which transpired between their receiving John's immersion and Christian immersion?
M. No: I have never regarded that as a matter of any consequence. Of what importance is it to our purpose?  A. The sequel will show it is of importance, But lest its consequence should bias your mind, let us first settle this matter.
M. I have no bias on the subject. I go for truth, whether old or new.
A. We shall then have no difficulty. You will, of course, then admit the common chronology without the proof in detail.
M. Certainly I will: for I suppose it is as correct as any we could now make out.
A. These were Asiatic Jews, and having been at Jerusalem during the life time of John, were immersed by him; but, living far off, they had learned nothing more than what John taught. Their remoteness from Judea explains how it became possible for them to live twenty-six years in ignorance of the Christian religion.
M. Twenty-six years! Is it possible?
A. Dr. Scott and Dr. Clarke place Paul's meeting with them in the year of our Lord 58, and John's death in the year 30 or 31. This is the commonly received chronology; consequently it was full 26 years after their receiving John's immersion.
M. Be it so, then: and what do you infer from this?
A. Of this immediately. But please observe that you have assumed that they were not baptized for the remission of sins; because John immersed for the remission of sins. He did not, you allow, immerse for the remission of sins prospectively; consequently they had not obtained any pledge for remission of the sins of these twenty-six years.
M. They are called disciples.
A. And did not John make disciples? Certainly he did; but he could not make disciples of Christ. He did prepare a people for him. None could be the disciples of Christ but those who were taught by him or his Apostles, the Christian religion.
M. Well, allow that not having fully known the doctrine of Christ, they could not fully enjoy the remission of sins committed during these twenty-six years, still may it not be said that they were immersed with a special reference to the reception of the Holy Spirit?
A. By no means. There is not a word said about their being immersed for the Holy Spirit. This is also an assumption.
M. Assumption? Why you make every thing an assumption!
A. Yes, every thing that is an assumption. And most certainly this is: for the question was not, 'Have you received the Holy Spirit since you were baptized?' but it is, 'since you believed?" And I will put you a question here: Suppose they had said yes, think you Paul would have mentioned baptism at all?
M. No. But does not his mentioning immersion show that he associated the gift of the Holy Spirit with that institution?
A. It does not in this connexion of things. They say they had not heard the name of the Holy Spirit mentioned as given. This at once astonished Paul. Why, says he, into what name, not for what gift,  were you immersed, seeing you have not heard of the Holy Spirit? I need not repeat their answer. Paul was no longer astonished. He knew the name of the Holy Spirit and of Jesus went together; and that John immersed into no name. He only preached that they should believe in him that was to come after him. Paul explained the subject to them. When they heard this they were immersed into the name of the Lord Jesus. No special purpose stated. They assumed Jesus as their leader; and let me add, it is most obvious they were not immersed for the special purpose of receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit in or after baptism; for they received this gift by imposition of hands. It would be the common sophism of the post hoc for the propter hoc, or making the precedent circumstance always the cause of that which follows it, to say that because after baptism Paul laid his hands on them, they were baptized with special reference to this gift. I need not now say to you that there is no authority for supposing that they did not receive baptism in its full sense; because there is no special exclusion of any one blessing common to others, nor reference to any one blessing as especially to be sought in the institution. No person, I think, has authority to say they were not immersed for the remission of sins, or that they were immersed exclusively for the Holy Spirit; both of which seem to have been taken for granted by you, friend Matthias. But here comes Rufus; perhaps he may have something to say on this proposition.
Rufus.--What, brethren, are you in debate again, or in solemn council met?
Matthias.--I was only, brother Rufus, in your absence, proposing Matthias a difficulty on Acts xix. concerning the re-immersion of those Ephesian or Asiatic twelve whom Paul accosted.
R. I am glad to meet you, not only in this place, but upon this subject. I think it militates against the proposition of our friend Alexander, who says that christian immersion cannot be iterated unless in its full sense. It appears that these disciples of John were immersed for the Holy Spirit alone.
M. I begin to waver in that view of it: for now it appears that there was no special reference to the promise of the Spirit, inducing them to be immersed, more than for the remission of sins. But the question whether they had, since they believed, received the Holy Spirit, originated the conversation about immersion, and gave Paul an opportunity of unfolding to them the meaning of John's immersion as preliminary to the christian institution. This disposed them to be immersed into the name of the Lord Jesus.
R. I felt very confident at first view of this passage that it would be a difficulty insurmountable in making good the proposition; but a greater difficulty to my own side of the question has arisen, which I assure you perplexes me a little. It is this: If I affirm that these twelve men were re-immersed for the Holy Spirit, then it must have been for its miraculous gifts: for no notice is taken of any other in the passage--"They spake with tongues and prophesied" after their baptism. 
A. Say, Rufus, 'After Paul laid his hands on them.'
R. Well, was it not after this baptism that Paul laid his hands on them?
A. Certainly; but if the miraculous gifts had followed their immersion, then your difficulty would have been much greater; for then it might be argued that the promise of the Holy Spirit after baptism had ceased when miraculous gifts had ceased. But it seems the gifts communicated at this time of a miraculous character came not from baptism; and this saves your views while it removes the objections to my proposition.
R. I will then press it no farther lest I weaken my own citadel rather than impair your castle. But tell me, what do you mean by baptism in its full sense?
A. What do you mean by being born, in its full sense; married, in its full sense; buried in its full sense? Is not a person when born placed in a new state; under a system of new influences, which is as full in reference to one as it is to all persons in that state? Can any one be born in a less than a full sense into this state? Is not every married female placed in the same state as respects her husband? The law makes no difference--reason, religion make no difference. Two persons may be once married in its full sense; but the same two persons cannot a second time enter into that state. If they are married at all, it is in the full sense--name, family, friends, property, all go together. A woman cannot be married to a husband the second time for sake of the property, nor forsake of the name, or family, or any one thing by itself. Buried, a person cannot be, unless in its full sense--cut off from this present world in all its influences, connexions, pursuits, &c. We speak not of the mode, form, or ceremony, by which these actions are performed; but of the meaning of them. Every one who receives Jesus as the Saviour sent from God, and who is immersed into his name once, in like manner cannot a second time be immersed for any special benefit. If immersed again, it must be in the full sense; that is, for all the purposes for which the institution exists. He must come to it as a heathen, a Jew, or an infidel approached it in the days of the Apostles. All who go down into the water, as all those who go down into the grave, descend into it alike dead to their former state, character, and pursuits. If a man lived twenty-six years a Jew, an infidel, a pagan, or a sectarian professor of Christianity, a proselyte of Luther, of Calvin, of Wesley, when he is burled in this grave he enters it as a dead man, and leaves in it his former profession.
R. Did I, in my second immersion, renounce all my former prayers, professions, and religious works, just as Paul did his anathemas and persecutions against the Christians?
A. Most certainly you did, Yes, you too, Rufus, buried your christian works and your sins in the same grave! If christian works you had, you could not be buried half dead and half alive.
R. This, indeed, makes it appear a graver matter than I was at all aware. 
M. The bell chimes. I promised to hear Mr. S. preach. Will you accompany me to his church.
A. Yes, we shall go and hear him. He is sometimes interesting.
Extract from the Baptist Weekly Journal of March 2d, 1832,
printed in Cincinnati, Ohio.
PROGRESS OF TRUTH.
A LETTER to the Editor of the Christian Index gives an account of the recent baptism of William Hooper one of the professors in the University of North Carolina, &c.
A letter from Elder B. Allen, of Morgan county, Ohio, dated 12 miles from Pittsburg, December 20th, 1831 contains a passage, which we insert in connexion with the above, After being received it was mislaid for some weeks. Elder Allen says--"Since I left home on my mission for the Convention I have travelled about 350 miles, and principally in those sections of country where the sentiments of A. Campbell were once increasing and seemed to swallow up all others; but now I believe those errors are rapidly decreasing. Many who have been bewildered by the doctrine of (mere) historic faith and water regeneration, are coming out of modern Babylon, and appearing glad to receive (what is truly) the ancient order of things.
"In several places the Lord is evidently working by the influences of the Holy Spirit The sentiments of the Regular Baptists are gaining ground very rapidly. A few weeks since I baptized an Elder of the Presbyterian church, who is in the 64th year of his age. On that day a large concourse of people had assembled, many of whom had seldom seen the administration of baptism," &c.
Being but a young disciple, and not well skilled in mysteries, will you be good enough to tell me (if you know) what Elder Allen means by the terms "mere historic faith?" Does he mean the belief of facts spoken of by historians relative to the climate, soil, productions, governments, manners, and customs of the different nations of whom they write? Or does he allude to the facts of which Moses, the Prophets, the Evangelists, and the Apostles give us information in their writings? If the former be his meaning I am not surprised that he speaks disrespectfully of that kind of faith (as relating to religion.) but if the latter be his meaning I understand him to say that the Regular Baptists hold the belief of those facts on such testimony to be erroneous. If so, the Apostle John must have been a zealous propagator of error; for he expressly declares that he wrote for the purpose of producing belief in the readers of his writings, that they might have life, &c.
Elder Allen also speaks of water regeneration as being erroneous; but says, that, but a few weeks before, he had used water in the  regeneration of a Presbyterian Elder, and that many who witnessed it had seldom seen the administration of baptism, (in water, I suppose.) This circumstance, I imagine, did not take place in that part of the country where the erroneous sentiment of water regeneration had been propagated.
Perhaps, brother Campbell, you can tell what Elder Allen meant. If so, I should like to hear from you on the subject; and, perhaps, many of the readers of that publication may be as ignorant as I am, and you might benefit them as well as me, by publishing his meaning in the Harbinger.
Yours, in the search of truth,
PHILADELPHIA PREACHERS AND CHURCHES.
|PHILADELPHIA, 3d March, 1832.|
Dear brother Campbell,
I HAVE taken up my pen two or three times to fulfil my promise of writing you from this city. I now think 1 will try and get through with it; not that you may infer from this that 1 have regarded it as a task; but the fact was, I found in sketching the things which have passed under my notice, I had, or thought I had, given too strong a coloring to the picture, and therefore threw aside my half finished letter, to allow a little longer time for the scenery to become more familiarized to my mind; as it is always my desire to "set down nothing in malice, or aught extenuate," but to hold the picture (if not to nature) at least to the reality. A person would naturally suppose, upon visiting a city so celebrated as this is for literature, science, and religion, that here he would find all matters connected with these subjects unfolded in a manner clear and comprehensive to the most common capacity. How far this has been the case with me, a short detail of what has passed under my notice on one of these subjects (religion) will best unfold. On the subject of religion one would readily suppose that an inquirer after the way of eternal life could be easily satisfied as to what he must do in order to be saved, if he would once attend "church" in this city; or there can be no use in paying men expressly for instruction upon that all-important topic, from one to two or three thousand dollars annually--at least I think one of our "hill country" folks would think it was money but poorly spent if one of their preachers could not tell in one or two discourses how folks were saved in the days of primitive Christianity. Supposing myself ignorant of what the Scriptures taught, judge you from the following how that ignorance would be removed after hearing some of their "great Divines." On the first Lord's day after my arrival I attended with, and at the request of a friend, Mr. Skinner's Church," as they call it here. In my readings of the Bible, never read of Paul's Church, Peter's, John's, nor even of "my church;" but I always read "the church of God:" "church of Christ" but here they have "the Rev. Mr. Skinner's church," "the Rev. Doctor Finnare's church," "the Rev. Mr. Brantly's church," &c. &c.--but in this great city  never once have I heard of the "church of God;" or "church of Christ." Well, there is, perhaps, none such. The gospel of Jesus Christ and the blessings of the "church of God" were to be without money and without price. Not so the gospel and blessings of "the Rev. Doctor Skinner's church" and the other Reverends of this city: for independent of the large salaries they get, the very first thing that was presented me in the "Rev. Mr. Skinner's church" was the money box, to pay for the sermon before it was delivered. As I did not know the value of the Rev. gentleman's sermon, I was at a loss how much to pay in advance, having always understood that in fair trade the article should he exhibited first, that the purchaser might see it and judge of its value before he should be called upon to make an advance. 'Tis true I have heard and know of merchants and auctioneers making advances upon the exhibit of an invoice of articles; and far be it from me to say that Mr Skinner had not furnished such catalogue to his merchants upon this occasion. How that may be I know not; but as I remarked that I was at a loss to know what advance to make upon the forthcoming commodity, my first object was to see if I could ascertain what was advanced by his standing customers. I looked and looked, and what was my surprise to see old customers advancing only a penny a-piece. Well, I thought they knew the value of what was coming better than I did; but, as I had no copper, I had to make a larger investment, not without (you might suppose) some little degree of pride being excited, that I should be considered the largest stockholder of all I the assemblage in the forthcoming sermon. Well, the money being all paid and the boxes safely laid away, a psalm was read for singing, and whilst I was listening to hear sweet voices tuning, a great wooden instrument began at my back to "cry out." I had read that on a certain occasion it was said that if certain "held their peace the stones would cry out." Well, wood is softer than stones, and if the religion of Dr. Skinner's church could not make the stones cry out, who could object to their making wood? Not I. It should, perhaps, be remarked here, that the audience was very respectful in this, for not one of them, that I heard, made the least noise to disturb the wooden cries and those sitting round about it, but one gentlemen, in the same pew with myself. He being somewhat old-fashioned, as I suppose, attempted to sing, but even in this his good breeding was manifest, for I could hardly hear him, although I sat next to him. This being over, the reverend gentleman rises and reads two small portions of scripture of the Old Testament--one from Exodus and one from Deuteronomy respecting "the law" and one passage from the New Testament in Hebrews. Some might suspect that I had made "a fine spec," and that the stock would advance greatly above par from this beginning, Six minutes to 11 o'clock, expectations high. He commences, lays his premises, and undertakes to prove that the ten commandments were not delivered by God to Moses, and by him to the Jews; but that they were given immediately by the Creator to Jesus himself, and that they were not for the Jews only (as all the other laws given them by Moses were  but for the whole world; that Adam fell under them; that Jesus Christ was put to death to give honor to them--nay, that they were eternal; angels in heaven, men on earth and devils in hell were all under them; that it was against these the angels that fell sinned; and finally, that when this scene of things should be wound up, it would still be the rule of action for saints in heaven, devils and the damned in hell. In 30 minutes stock fell 200 per cent. And lastly, that God had set apart no particular day for his worship in these ten commandments, but required one-seventh part of their time only, and therefore it mattered not whether it was the first, second, fifth, or seventh day that was observed as a day of rest; and therefore the Sabbath was of eternal duration, and he who now offended against the day that Christians regarded as the Sabbath, done it at the peril of the same punishment inflicted upon the Jews under Moses. Stock entirely dead on my hands. That a person, in order to be saved, must be led up to the "fiery law of Sinai," and there be cut down by it, and then he was ready to believe Jesus Christ and come to him to be saved. The smell of brimstone certified me that the stock was gone--gone; the whole investment sunk. Alas for Peter! He knew nothing--absolutely nothing at all about Mr. Skinner's way of saving a soul from endless destruction. Well, this job being over, I concluded never to "buy a pig in a poke" again--never to make an advance upon the credit of a Philadelphia Divine's commodity. Thus determining, I left the "church" and hied away to my boarding.
The next Lord's day, as the Book calls it--Sabbath, as they call it here, I went to hear Mr. Dagg. He was upon Paul's speech before Felix. In this he only attempted to show that Paul defended himself with great ability and logical acumen, and was much superior to Tertullus. On the whole, he is the only one that I have heard, who undertakes to make the scriptures any way useful.
In the evening I went to hear the "Unitarians" at "Dr. Finnare's Church." Here the subject was, "The letter killeth, but the Spirit maketh alive." And what do you suppose the gospel of "Doctor Finnare's Church" made out of this? When I tell you that the speaker (I beg his pardon--the reader) (it was not Dr. F. himself, but a gentleman from Boston) admonished the audience of the necessity of noticing what the Apostle was writing about, and who to, and what their circumstances, when he wrote, which called forth this epistle. When I tell you these were his introductory remarks, you could never guess in 40 years what he made it out to be. Well, I will tell you: He said Paul was a man of science, and that he was laboring to prove and show the Corinthians that they must not take many passages according to the letter--such as Moses' account of the creation; for science, he said, had shown that the earth could never have been created before the sun, and moon, and other planets; for it was now known that the earth was suspended in its station by the principle of gravitation; and if there had been no sun, &c. the principle of gravitation would have been wanting, and the Almighty would have had nothing to hang the earth upon, and he could not have got it off his  hands. "The letter," therefore, "killeth, but the Spirit maketh alive." That it was all nonsense to talk about Jesus Christ or God dying upon this little planet, while all the rest of the planets, many of which were a great deal bigger than this earth, were neglected. A greater absurdity still, as he labored to demonstrate, was the supposition that where the Bible spoke of sinners being damned, and driven from the presence of their Creator forever, it meant a literal damnation--Such a doctrine was only fit for witches, and could not find a single supporter now-a-days out of the ranks of superstition and sectarian bigotry.------Alas! my Master, how have they perverted thy ways! ways, which thou told us should be so plain, that a way-faring man, though a fool, need not err therein!
Now what is the sum of all this matter? 1st. Judaism. 2d. I cant tell what? And lastly, infidelity.
I need hardly say that in the Unitarian church they had the wooden instrument a-going, and I am told they have the stage actresses and actors for a choir. "Like Priest, like people."
May the favor of the Lord Jesus be with you, is the prayer of
|ALBA, Bradford Co. Penn. March 29,1832.|
I GAVE you encouragement, some time since, of forwarding a short account of the progress of reform in this county. I intended to have done it in the month of February last, but was prevented by a multiplicity of business. There are five churches in the county decidedly in favor of reform. I begin with
In 1829 this church was rejected by the Chemung Baptist Association for no other reason than because they were unwilling to take any other course than the word of God directed. It then consisted of 60 members; and notwithstanding the violent opposition of all the sects, and the dishonorable means to which the Chemung Association has resorted in order to its overthrow, it now consists of 110 members, and meets weekly to attend to the worship of God in the ancient manner. She has two Bishops and one Deacon. The brethren of this church have certainly manifested a very commendable share of patience towards those who, instead of persecuting, ought to have loved them. I do hope our fellow-disciples throughout the world will remember the law of our King, and "not render railing for railing."
This church is composed of 40 members, who were expelled "for voting to dispense with the Articles and Covenant and to take the word of God alone for their guide. This occurred about 15 months since. According to the ancient practice, these brethren are in a good degree, walking in all the commandments and ordinances. They have two Bishops and two Deacons.
THIS church consists of about 35 members, and meets, I believe, every Lord's day, but does not as frequently break the loaf. They want visiting and encouraging; and I do most earnestly desire some of our brethren from the West to pay us a visit. It would be highly encouraging to all our churches.
COLUMBIA AND TROY.
These brethren met, for the first time, as a church, in August, 1830, and at that time amounted to but 19 members. They have since increased to 41. They pay a primitive regard to the first day of the week. 
This is a church in connexion with the Christian denomination. Brother Sweet, their Elder, has decidedly fallen in with the ancient gospel. I visited that church considerably during last winter, and must say that I never met with a people more disposed to believe the truth. I believe they are about 40 in number. They do not meet every first day of the week to break the loaf, but I hope they soon will.
There is a small church, of about 20 members, in Luzerne county, which I hope is doing honor to the Redeemer.
In behalf of these churches, among whom I have spent the principal part of my time during several months past, I solicit a visit from some of our brethren from the West, who labor in the word and teaching.
I am your brother in the hope of immortality,
|S. E. SHEPARD.|
BUILDING HOUSES FOR CHRISTIAN WORSHIP.
Extracts from Correspondents in Eastern Virginia.
"THE churches engaged in the Reformation are alive to the good work. There is one near the Bowling Green now raising, a brick building, 32 by 40 feet. One in Essex, now receiving proposals for a similar building, 30 by 40. One in Richmond, having a subscription of more than 5000 dollars, which has purchased a lot contiguous to the City Hall and Capitol, on which will be erected a brick building, 50 by 70 feet, to be completed in November next."
It is most devoutly to be wished that all who plead for reformation would carry out their principles in the plainness, convenience, and cheapness of the buildings which they erect for the assemblies of Christians. No greater satire could be inscribed on marble against the religion of Jesus Christ, than are many of the houses called churches, whenever the people have the means of gratifying the spirit which is in them. There is no difference between the Baptists and other sects in this particular. Opulent communities amongst them have stately edifices, with lofty steeples and ponderous bells. There are some Baptist cathedrals on which more than 40,000 dollars have been expended for the sake of proving that the Baptists would be as respectable as any other sect if they had it in their power. The spirit of baptized and sprinkled Calvinism, whether in the Presbyterial or Congregational form, is one and the same, if a thousand arguments could prove such a proposition. Large, convenient, and permanent houses may be builded for generally less than half the sum usually expended on the same number of square feet. The Quakers are more exemplary this matter than any other sect. But even their plan could still be improved. Let there be only a regard to convenience and durability; let all that is merely to gratify the lusts of the eye and the pride of life be left to them who seek to gain influence on the children of the flesh by reducing christianity to the taste and fashion of this world, and we can build two, three, and sometimes four meeting houses for the price of one of the same dimensions.
Under the present political influences which govern society, it is necessary to have synagogues or meeting houses large enough for the accommodation of the disciples, who can meet in any one place, and such of the community as may desire to attend their meetings. But for the sake of the humble founder of this our religion, and the author of our hope before God, let not the walls of the house, nor any thing in it, reproach our profession.
THE OBITUARY NOTICE AGAIN.
SUNDRY documents, indicative of the want of candor and fair dealing on the part of those who made so much ado on the subject of our notice of the  demise of R. B. Semple, were received too late for publication in our last number. As our opponents have so unequivocally fallen into the pit which they have digged, (for sinners' 'hands do make the snares wherewith themselves are caught,') we will not farther expose them even to the awakening of sympathy, and shall only publish a single letter from one correspondent, being a reply to a letter addressed to him from Thomas Campbell, Sen. We publish it especially because of its reference to the charge advanced by Andrew Broaddus against Thomas Campbell for presenting certain printed documents to the churches for their adoption.
|"Kenmore, Spottsylvania, March 17 1832.|
Dear Brother Campbell,
Yours of the 22d February was duly received, and ought long ago to have been answered. I deem an apology, however, at this time unnecessary, and therefore now proceed to answer it as far as I am acquainted with the circumstances to which you allude, and my memory serves me. I was, indeed, surprised to see in the Religious Herald an attack upon the statement contained in the Millennial Harbinger with regard to the christian reception you met with from brother Semple when in Fredericksburg; not that I was present when you were introduced to brother Semple, nor at the conversation of which brother Adams speaks, that took place at brother Fifes. But after hearing brother Semple say in his supplement (as it is called) to your morning discourse, that he "thanked God that he had heard the truth that day;" that he "thought all would be profited by more of such preaching;" and praying fervently that your "labors might be crowned with success," and it being mentioned by yourself and others that night and frequently afterwards, before brother Semple's decease, that on parting he wished you God speed; I say, after bearing all this, I was astonished to see the attack in the Religious Herald on the statement contained in the Harbinger. You perceive that I have only mentioned those things which made a strong impression on my mind, being, as I have frequently since said, expressions that I scarcely expected to hear from brother Semple. The statement made by brother Adams is a fair and candid representation of what happened while I was present, which was from about 15 or 20 minutes before you closed your morning discourse, until some time after your discourse at night.
As respects the printed documents spoken of by brother Broaddus, I feel no hesitation in saying, in the most positive manner, that you never, in my presence, exhibited them for the formal or informal reception of any one, farther than as you stated, to prevent mistakes, and to show the object of the reformation of which you professed to be an advocate; and surely I had every opportunity of hearing you state the object of them, as I was with you the greater part of the time you were in Spottsylvania.
Concerning the statements of brethren Warren and Peyton--the one that you "endeavored to expose that which you acknowledged in the morning"--the other that "you evidently attacked what you acknowledged in the morning," enough I think has already been said by others. It is, however, wonderful to me that the great body of the enlightened church in Fredericksburg had not discovered your, so called, sophistry.
Yours in christian love,
|J. M. ANDERSON.|
THE CHRISTIAN PREACHER--No. III.
THE christian preacher, whatever be his topic, has uniformly but one great object in view. To induce sinners to give themselves up to Jesus as the divine author of an eternal salvation, is the Alpha and the Omega of all his efforts. Whether his text be selected from Jewish or Pagan antiquity--whether from the animal, vegetable, or  mineral kingdoms of nature--whether from the law, the prophets, or the psalms--his only lawful and his only successful theme is, that "Jesus the Nazarene is Messiah, the Son of God." To illustrate, prove, and apply this proposition, is his grand aim; and to persuade men to receive Jesus in this character, is the only appropriate burthen of all his exhortations.
A scribe, well instructed in the Reign of Favor, informs us that Peter's first annunciation of the gospel consisted in testifying and exhorting. "With many other words" [than those recorded,] says Luke, "did Peter testify and exhort." To adduce the testimony is, in our time, equivalent to "testifying;" and "to exhort" to obedience is a work the same in all times and places. Paul visited Corinth as he visited other cities, and therefore in all places he declared the testimony of God; for he says, "he came to Corinth declaring the testimony of God." This was his mode, in which he differed nothing from Peter and all his associates.
Every christian speaker rises to persuade, and for the most part he has some proposition first to prove, or which he takes for granted as conceded. If he assume nothing, he first states his proposition. His next object will be to illustrate it, or to expound its terms if it happen to be necessary. His third object will be to prove his proposition; and all this is done for the sake of the application or use of it. That Jesus is Messiah, the Son of God, is the proposition stated. The words "Jesus," "Messiah," "Son of God," expressed in their full and biblical import in reference to our conceptions, is the proposition illustrated. The law, the prophets, John the Baptist, Jesus, and the Apostles; the miracles, prophecies, labors, and characters of the first heralds, furnish the arguments in chief which prove his proposition; and when these documents are logically and scripturally presented, the proposition is proved. When sinners are persuaded to embrace him as the Messiah, and to submit to him as the Son of God, the proposition is applied, or used for the purpose for which it was stated, illustrated, and proved.
The proposition which occupies the christian preacher, how grand and comprehensive! That Jesus the Nazarene, Son of Mary the Virgin, by law enrolled the son of Joseph, was the anointed, divinely authorized, and empowered Messenger of Jehovah, the only begotten Son of the Father of Eternity, sent from his bosom, to be first the teacher, then the high priest, and finally the king of all nations of saints in order to their present enjoyment of God and eternal life. In illustration of this proposition it is shown that, as a prophet, he alone revealed the Father, his excellencies, and purposes; first by his own personal teaching, then by the impartation of the Spirit of wisdom and knowledge to his Apostles: that as a great high priest he made one offering for sin, and forever put it away by the sacrifice of himself on earth; and by his appearance in heaven as our advocate, intercedes for all who come by him to God;--that as a king, upon the holy hill of Zion, on the throne of David, translated to the heavens, he now reigns as a prince and saviour, a governor and king over  heaven, and earth, and hades--appointed by God to be the judge of the living and the dead.
This proposition in all its amplitude embraces all the moral sublimities in creation, universal history, life, death, and immortality. It ramifies through all matters--supernal, infernal, terrestrial. It spreads itself over the length and breadth of creation, descending down into the fathomless abyss, and ascending through all ranks of being up to the throne of God. It illuminates all time and all history, and is illuminated by all the records of nature and society. Its light and glory fill every eye which can contemplate it; yet none can say he has seen all its truth, all its beauty, and excellency.
But while its amplitude is so vast and unbounded, the most feeble eye can discern it, and behold in it the simplicity and excellency which allure to God and heaven. All who have seen it clearly can show it clearly to them who wish to discern it; but as the sun affords no light to him who shuts his eyes, or walks forth only in the night; so the wilfully ignorant apprehend not its truth! its magnitude, and glory. To such the subject of it while on earth had no form nor comeliness; they saw in him no beauty? no reason why they should desire him.
The necessity of clearly, fully, and satisfactorily stating, illustrating, and proving, from all scriptural documents, that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, in order to obedience, is suggested and enforced by the nature of things, by the commandments and examples of the Apostles, and by our own experience:--
1. By the nature of things.--Who ever confided in, feared, loved, honored, or obeyed an unknown person? It is inconceivable. It needs no demonstration to shew that no man can, or will come to Jesus Christ, unless he first know who he is, and what he has to bestow. Confidence, fear, love, and honor are the fruits of knowledge. And who that reasons does not feel, that every degree and enlargement of degrees in confidence, or affection, is measured by, and graduated upon, the scale of knowledge?
2. By the commandments and examples of the Apostles.--They not only commanded the testimony to be adduced, Jesus to be proclaimed, the word to be announced; but in all places they did give to this proposition the supreme attention. Peter in his Pentecostian address directs all his energies to prove that Jesus was Lord and Christ. He turned all incidents, arranged all circumstances, applied all prophecies bearing upon that audience, to illustrate and prove this proposition. When this was proved, the application was easy. In all his discourses his regard to this matter is most apparent. Paul, as soon as he was converted, proclaimed in the synagogue in Damascus that Jesus was the Christ, and most irresistibly convinced the Jews that he was the identical Messiah foretold. In other cities and to other people he did vary his address, so as to meet their apprehensions and have access to their understandings; but whatever might be the beginning of his discourse, this obtained the most conspicuous place, and was that point to which all his testimonies and reasonings were  directed. The Evangelists wrote to prove what they preached. John informs us that they wrote to prove that Jesus was the Messiah, and that through him men might obtain eternal life. Their preachings and writings are all in proof of the importance of proclaiming with all authority and evidence that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God.
3. By our own experience.--The great teacher first addressed the understandings of men; he sought not to move their passions till proper objects were presented to them. In his admirable parable of the sower, as interpreted by himself, and recorded by Matthew, he says, he that was denoted by the seed which fell by the way side, was the person that understood not; while he that heard to his salvation, was the man that understood what he heard. In our day it is too generally taken for granted that the "great mass of hearers believe this proposition, and therefore seldom or never do we hear it stated, illustrated, and proved. The proposition is itself undervalued, its evidence disparaged, and the belief of it represented as wholly unavailing; as mere historic faith, differing nothing from the faith of demons. It is supposed to exert no salutary, no saving influence upon the hearts of men. Once it was represented by the Apostles as of paramount importance; but now it is of little or no account. Once it was said by an Apostle, "Everyone that believes that Jesus is the Christ has been begotten of God." Once it was asked, "Who is he that overcomes the world, but he that believes that Jesus is the Son of God?" but now millions are supposed to believe this who are not begotten of God, and who do not overcome the world. We, however, rather incline to think that all who do, on the proper evidence, and with full conviction of its meaning, believe this proposition, are begotten of God, and do overcome the world.
But it will, no doubt, be asked, What have these remarks to do with our experience, as proof of the necessity of preaching and proving that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God? The bearing is not so remote as may at first sight appear. We experience that these sayings are true;--that all who do believe the same proposition, on the same evidence, resemble those who, in ancient times, trusted in Jesus as the Messiah:--and our observation, which is in some sense our experience, proves that those who are made religious by human expedients are quite a different race, compared with those who are immersed into this faith.
By what means are the great revivals got up and perfected; or by what means are so many hundreds enabled "to get religion" in this our day? Are not the influences relied upon diverse from the ordinary or extraordinary influences exhibited in the New Testament? The proclamation of the word and the miraculous aids of the Holy Spirit, in confirmation of the testimony, are all that appear on the page of apostolic history. But now what are the causes of a revival. I know some of their advocates will reply, 'The Holy Spirit.' This may satisfy the credulous, the enthusiastic; but those who look at all at the managements, in doors and out of doors, will be apt to ask, Why these "protracted meetings?" To afford the Spirit time to  impress the minds of the people!! Why this noise, this commotion, this vociferation? To induce the Spirit to convert the people!! Why these anxious seats, these mourning benches? To put persons in a proper attitude to receive the operations of the Holy Spirit!! It will not do to push these inquiries very far, else we should be regarded as blaspheming the Holy Spirit: for some are so undiscriminating as to think that a word spoken against a mourning bench, or an anxious seat, or against clamorous appeals to the animal nature of man, are blasphemies against the Holy Spirit!
But when persons are actuated by any other influence than the knowledge and belief that Jesus is the Son of God, to submit to him; it generally, if not universally, becomes apparent in their demeanor, that they have got a religion different from that which comes through the influence of that Holy Spirit which sustained the Apostles.
The Apostles immersed none whom they did not regard as believing and understanding the great proposition, the truth of which was acknowledged before immersion. "If you believe with all your heart that Jesus is the Messiah! the Son of God, you may be immersed," was the substance of their reply to the applicants. It was not kneeling at the footstool of a priest to be prayed for: it was not entering an altar, or changing position in a camp, or a meeting house; it was not the imagination of some inward drawings, of some heaven-descended impulse, affirming in the heart of man that he was regenerated, or justified, which the first preachers recommended as the means of conversion; or sanctioned by their example as useful expedients to bring men into the kingdom of Jesus.
But our observation proves the necessity of holding forth the capital proposition in all its evidence: for the inaction or spiritual death and coldness which so frequently succeed the fever of a revival, especially in those whose minds are governed more by feeling, by the fervors of imagination, by appeals to their passions, than by reason, the law, or the prophets, (more fatal to the subjects and to society at large than the most perfect apathy or stoicism,) fully and irresistibly prove that there was no root in them; that they did not understand the gospel; that they were not converts to Jesus Christ; but to a party, to a phantom, to them own feelings.
As the lightning and thunder of heaven which agitate and rend the atmosphere, are succeeded by a chilling season, proportioned to the extent of the electric explosion, so are these forced revivals, these great excitements, succeeded by a chill, from which many never recover even a natural heat on the subject of religion. It is impossible for a person to be long enamored with he knows not what, or to serve a master of whom he knows but little, and for whom he can have no rational affection. From these premises it cannot be doubted that the first preachers of the gospel acted most philosophically when they labored, first to make all men understand and believe that Jesus was the Messiah, the Son of God, before they besought them to submit to him as the only Mediator, as the only Redeemer who could save them from sin, as the only leader who could guide them home to the  enjoyment of God, and assure them of a final and triumphant victory over sin, death, and the grave. The truly christian preacher will never lose sight of this proposition; for it he will not substitute fancy, feeling, spirit, or water. He will always remember that Jesus himself has decided, "He that received seed into the good ground, is he that hears the word and understands it; which also bears fruit, and brings forth some an hundred fold, some sixty, some thirty."3
QUERIES FROM TRUMBULL, OHIO.
"IN your Extra, No. 1, you say, "Unless a man's state is changed, [unless he be immersed,] he is unpardoned, &c. and lost to all christian life and enjoyment. In No. 12, vol. 1, you say, "Connexion with God constitutes spiritual life;" "When engrafted into Christ [immersed] we are made alive to God;" "The quickening act, the act which imparts life, is the act of remission;" "When buried and raised with Jesus we are made alive with him." Again you say, that "if a person is not alive before born, he is not alive afterwards. That persons are begotten or quickened by the word, before they are born of the water;" and yet it would appear that you make the act of immersion the quickening act. Is there not a contradiction here? Is not the subject of baptism represented as dead until immersed, and yet as quickened by the word before he is born of the water? Please explain how this can be.
ANSWER.--The terms dead and alive are used with as great a latitude as any other terms in our language, and yet they are as definite terms as any other words in common usage. "Let the dead bury their dead," and "She that lives in pleasure is dead while she lives" are examples of this sort. A person is figuratively alive to what he enjoys and dead to what he does not enjoy. I would not, from these remarks, plead that we have been always free, or that we are, in the case alluded to, free from apparent contradiction. A person in writing or speaking much on an subject, at long intervals and with reference to special objects, will be more fortunate than we could ever promise ourselves, if he escape verbal contradictions, apparent, if not real. Sceptics have thought that they found many contradictions of this sort in the sacred writings, but when fully canvassed they have not as yet fairly made out one.
To the case before us. No person can, in the full import of the word life be said to enjoy life, or be made alive to God until he has the assurance of pardon. We are dead and buried as respects one state, before we are raised with Christ into another, and made to live in that state to God. In this sense, doubtless, Paul uses it, Rom, vi. and Col. ii. We are made alive to God in the pardon of our sins. But as a child is alive, in one sense, before it is born, though not in the same sense as after it is born: its life and the enjoyment of it  are not the same before and after birth: so ye are not alive in the same sense before and after remission. That we are quickened, begotten by the word, made alive by the Spirit before remission in a sense of the word life, is admitted but the analogy may be carried too far in this as in other cases. Spiritual life and christian life are as much the same, and are yet as different as the life of a child before and after birth. Our present christian life will also differ much from the life after the third or literal resurrection. It is true that none shall live eternally who are not quickened before the third birth; yet the life before and after the resurrection, though in some respects the same, will differ exceedingly. We leave our sins in the second birth, and we leave our animal corruptions in the third birth. Hence we are said to be made alive in reference to the figurative and the literal resurrection.
As it would not be a contradiction to say that christians are now alive to God, and that they will be made alive to God in the resurrection in a life that never ends, an it is not a contradiction to say that persons are quickened or begotten by the Spirit, and yet made alive to God in the formal and actual remission of their sins in the words and meaning of Paul: You who were dead in your sins has he made alive together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses.
Question 2. Who are the only legal administrators to introduce candidates into the kingdom of Jesus Christ?
Quest. 3. Are all immersed persons, male and female, to be so considered?
Quest. 4. If not, what persons?
Quest. 5. Can an unimmersed person be so considered under any circumstances?
Quest. 6. Can an immersion by an illegal administrator, if there be such, be valid or availing to the subject of it?
Quest. 7. Has there ever been a time since the setting up of Christ's kingdom, that legal administrators were extinct? And if so, has not the institution been lost, and a new one set up, wholly unauthorized that can impart to us no benefit, notwithstanding we are in possession of all the laws of the kingdom?
Answers to Questions 2, 3, and 4.--There is no law in the Christian Scriptures authorizing any one class of citizens in the christian kingdom to immerse, to the exclusion of any other class of citizens. Apostles, Evangelists, Deacons, and unofficial persons are all represented as immersing when occasion called for it. Paul, though not sent to immerse, yet did it when no other person was present. Philip immersed the Eunuch; Ananias immersed Paul; Peter's deacons or attendants from Joppa immersed Cornelius and his friends. So that if we have no law enjoining it upon one or any class of citizens, we have examples so various and numerous as to teach us that any citizen in the kingdom is an acceptable administrator when circumstances call upon him. How far expediency may suggest the propriety of a congregation making it the duty of one or more persons to attend upon such as are to be introduced into the kingdom, is a question which a respect to circumstances may decide, but on the ground of scriptural authority, every male citizen in the kingdom is an acceptable and authorized administrator.
As to female citizens immersing, we have no example of the sort on record. But as in the kingdom there is neither male nor female in the Lord, should any circumstance require it, there is no law nor precedent which would condemn a sister for immersing a female were it to become necessary. Even the church of Rome, the most enslaved to priestly supremacy and official holiness, allowed females to baptize in certain cases. And they who plead for baptism in room of circumcision, are bound by their own logic to hold the baptism of mothers as valid as that of the priest; for mothers, under the law, circumcised their children. Paul allowed females to pray and prophesy in company with one another, and only censured them for so doing when it was done in the presence of men, as if teaching or usurping authority over them. If a female citizen were to immerse her own daughter, or any other female when the circumstance required it, I know of no letter in the book of God which would  censure her. But expediency and propriety would remonstrate against it, except in such cases as those to which we have alluded.
Answer to Question 5--I think not; except as in the case of David, and they that were with him, who eat of the loaves of the presence--when stern necessity required it. We in no organized body call upon the members of any other body to officiate in the duties of an alien body. Who calls upon an alien to perform the special duties of a citizen in the state! But when I recollect that an unimmersed person immersed Roger Williams, the first subject of immersion on this continent, and that all the first baptisms of what are now called the Regulars, had no other authority or source than that of an unimmersed layman, I am willing for their sakes to be very charitable, and to say that in such a case an unimmersed administrator is better than none. But I confess I should not like to receive immersion from an alien, or from an unimmersed person, unless it was that or none at all. If an unimmersed person could prove that he had a mission from God to immerse, then indeed all who believed in his mission might receive baptism from him with all confidence.
Answer to Question 6.--I must answer in the words of the Catechism. The ordinances receive no virtue from the hand of him that does administer them; yet still, except in the case already marked, I should find it exceedingly unpleasant to fellowship the disciple who would select an unimmersed person to immerse him. It is a matter, let me remark once for all, which concerns the subject more than any other citizen. It is his duty and privilege to select a proper administrator, and not the duty of the church to select one for him. It is necessary that the church either see him immersed, or have sufficient testimony that he has been immersed before it receive him; but still it concerns him most to have a suitable person to perform this service. And as a general rule none is less exceptionable than that the person be immersed by him who has been the instrument of inducing him to submit to Jesus Christ. But we might as rationally and as scripturally talk about a legal administrator of prayer, of praise, or of any religious service which one can render to, or perform for, another, as for baptism. Expediency, however, may in some circumstances decree that persons may be appointed by a congregation to preach and baptize.
The seventh question is answered already in the reasons already submitted. As for a hereditary right, or a right, in descent or succession from the Apostles, there is no such thing taught in the scriptures; and there is no man on earth could prove his right to officiate if such a prerequisite were required of him. We have, bless the Lord! been emancipated from Protestant Popery.
I NOTICED some remarks in the Harbinger, No. 3. vol. 3, which I think do not represent things correctly. I for some time hesitated about offering my objections lest I should injure the good cause in some way: but as I have been, and still am your friend, and not a secret one, I hope my remarks will not be so construed as to lead any one to suppose that they originate from any feelings of opposition to the reformation for which you plead. The remarks to which I refer I will transcribe.
On page 138, speaking of the brethren Smith and Rogers, you say, "The one was formerly a Baptist, the other formerly a Christian in the sectarian import of these words, differing in some speculative opinions."
I will mention a few points in which they formerly differed, which I am persuaded are not mere speculative opinions. Brother Rogers, for instance, stood in opposition to all human creeds as bonds of christian union, and took the Bible as the only rule of faith and practice, and contended that no human opinion was of such importance as to authorize any to require subscription to them in order to christian fellowship. He also contended that the word of God was not a dead letter, and that it could be believed by men upon testimony, and  was not a sealed book. In these points, and a number of others which 1 might mention, those brethren differed. Now if you really believe that differing in these things is only differing in mere speculative opinions, I must acknowledge I have misunderstood you after an attentive reading of every number of your periodicals. Brother Rogers I have no doubt, has learned much since he professed faith, and much too by the instrumentality of brother Campbell; yet I think that he and brother Smith, and every friend of the reformation, would be very unwilling, upon reflection, to admit that nothing is gained but a triumph of speculative opinions, when men are brought to renounce or oppose all human laws in the kingdom of Christ, and all human opinions as tests of christian character, although they may still have much to learn.
In fact the zeal with which you oppose creeds, and advocate the word of God as the only authorized creed, is proof that you, with me, do not consider this mere speculative difference, as it is well understood that you go for facts.
Again, on page 139, you say, "We were pleased to learn that brethren Smith, Stone, Rogers, and others, at a public meeting in Lexington, Ky. on New Year's day, renounced their former speculations."
This information, brother Campbell, was not exactly correct. I am happy to say that none were called upon to renounce their own speculations or to embrace those of others in order to the enjoyment of fellowship and union.
Brethren Smith and Stone did state publicly, that they had indulged in controverting and preaching on several speculative points, but that it was their intention to cease from it, and to proclaim and insist upon the facts of the gospel, while both admitted that all were entitled to their own opinions. With their remarks and determination I was well pleased.
I have referred to this subject that it may be fairly understood that the object of the brethren at Lexington was to promote christian union upon the facts of the gospel, regardless of speculative opinions. Union, upon this principle, is progressing in this country, and the effects are glorious. Many persons are bowing to the sceptre of Christ. Let us all endeavor to be careful neither to say nor do any thing to check the good work which is going on upon the principle for which we all contend.
If I know any thing of myself as to this matter, the remarks which I have made are not the offspring of a "morbid sensibility" upon any theory, for I have never indulged knowingly in urging opinions on the subjects that long have divided, or helped to divide, the christian world.
[Remarks on this and Co-Operation of Churches, No. 4, in our next.]--Ed.
A VINDICATION of character and sentiment, by William E. Matthews, teacher of christianity to the congregations of Woodville, and New Hope, being a refutation of charges alleged by the Mississippi Baptist Association," &c. &c. a pamphlet of 20 pages, 12mo. printed before the close of 1831, was received here some weeks since. The writer ably vindicates himself and the brethren with him from the aforesaid charges, and presents some lucid views of the gospel and apostolic order of things upon the teachings and proceedings of the opposition. A new manoeuvre to carry a proscription of the writings of A. C. through this Association, deserves to be noticed. One or two individuals generally machinate and manage all such matters in all the Associations of the land. The words of the decree in progress were "We recommend to all the churches that they discountenance the writings of A. Campbell and the new translation of the Testament, and refuse their pulpits to any who teach the sentiments ascribed to the said A. C." This could not be passed without some trouble. The argument, "Hear before you judge," and "First prove, then condemn," had like to frustrate the decree. Whereupon the machinator arose and defined the word discountenance "not to mean to contemn or reject, but consider them inferior to the inspired writings." This, of course, removed the  scruples of those opposed to condemning or rejecting, and so it was carried; but in the Minutes this definition was not published!! Upon the whole, brother Matthews has, in a christian spirit, and with much ability, vindicated the truth from their aspersions, and his brethren from the anathemas of these deluded and intolerant persecutors.
A TRIBUTE TO THE MEMORY OF THE APOSTLES.
WE read the other day a pamphlet written by "Henry Grew, Pastor of a Church in Hartford, Con." of the above title, of 69 pages. 12mo. containing a miniature view of the original order of things in the christian church. It is written with much perspicuity and force. The author, it appears, has learned from the Scriptures, and has very convincingly exhibited that view of church order spread over the pages of the Christian Baptist. The discriminating features of the original gospel, as announced in the Acts of the Apostles, are also faithfully and ably sketched; so that this little pamphlet well deserves the attention of the christian communities, and is worthy to be titled "A Tribute to the Memory of the Apostles."
THE DEBATE IN NASHVILLE.
FROM a late "Christian Herald," edited by the nephew of the late Obadiah Jennings, it appears that the deficiencies in the unfinished manuscripts of Dr. Jennings' version of that discussion are to be supplied by the Pittsburg Editor, and that Matthew Brown, D. D. President of Canonsburg College, is to prefix memoirs of the deceased to the translation, so that the book is insured to sell for 75 cents per copy--for the benefit, too, of the family of the deceased! All this may do very well for the purposes contemplated; for if the General Assembly were to select out of their 1500 preachers a fit person to finish off the said version to the liking of that church, or if they wished for an instrument well accomplished in the art of personal abuse, and who knows every man according to the flesh, they could not in seven ballottings have chosen a more trusty or accomplished agent than the said S. C. Jennings, Editor of the Christian Herald, Pittsburg, to complete the report, or to offer remarks upon a discussion which he never heard.
DEATH--By the Rev. George Croly.
|WHAT is Death? 'Tis to be free!
No more to love, or hope, or fear,
To join the great equality:
All alike are humble there!
The mighty grave
Wraps lord and slave;
Nor pride nor poverty dares come
Within that refuge-house, the tomb!
Spirit with the drooping wing,
And the ever-weeping eye,
Thou of all earth's kings art king!
Empires at thy footstool lie!
Beneath thee strew'd,
Sink like the waves upon the shore:
Storms shall never rouse them more!
What's the grandeur of the earth
To the grandeur round thy throne?
Riches, glory, beauty, birth,
To thy kingdom all have gone!
Before thee stand
The wond'rous band;
Bards, heroes, sages, aide by side,
Who darken'd nations when they died.
Earth has hosts; but thou canst show
Many a million for her one;
Through thy gates the mortal flow
Has for countless years roll'd on.
Back from the tomb
No step has come;
There fix'd, till the last thunder's sound
Shall bid thy prisoners be unbound! 
'The Athenians know what is good, but the Lacedemonians practise it.'
THE last Assembly of Virginia has rendered itself memorable by the many eloquent speeches which were made on the subject of slavery, and the necessity of adopting a just and an efficient system of abolition, but arose without passing a single law on the subject. The Marylanders, without making a single speech, passed a law appropriating 200,000 dollars for the colonization of free people of color in Liberia. The Virginians for eloquence and the Marylanders for action in this instance, as in some others. Perhaps, like other preachers, the Virginia orators think it is enough to preach the truth, and leave the practice to others.
MONTHLY RECEIPTS for the MILLENNIAL HARBINGER
J T Johnson, Georgetown, Ky. paid vol 1 and 1 dollar on vol 3 for Mrs B Smith. S Curtis, Stratford, Con. vol. 3. J Crowder, Athens, Ala. vols 2 and 3, and 1 dollar on vol 4. J Matteson, North Bennington, Vt. vol 3 for D Wilber, and vol 1 and 1 dollar on vol 2 for himself. A Calder, Sartatia, Mi. vols 1 and 2 for S J Carman, and vol 2 for B Lewis. T M Morton, Washington, Ky. vol 3 for J Holton, Sen. W Whitman, Monmouth, Ill. vol 2 for J G Haley, and vol 2, and 1 dollar on vol 3 for himself. N Hixson, Maysville, Ky. vol 3 for W Corwine. J G Doddridge, Williamsport, O. vol 3 for Mr Graham and himself. G Finn, Ellisburg, N. Y. vols 1, 2, and 3. J S Wallis, Hawsburg, Va. vols 1 and 2 for J L Partlow, J K Hill, and W Browning, and vol 1 for Mary Razor. W Poston, Winchester. Ky. vol 1 for J M Sphar, and vol 3 for H T Cheves. T Hodgens, Taylorstown, Pa. vols 1, 2 and 3. U. M Robert, King Creek, S. C. vol 2 and 3 for J D Erwin, and vol 2 for W R Erwin and himself. F V Sutton, White Chimneys, Va. vol 3 for H Jones and Elizabeth Woolfolk. TJ Latham, Pantego, N. C. vols 1 and 2, and 1 dollar on vol 3 for T Burges. J Anson, Petersburg, Va. vol 2 tor C Loomis, and 1 dollar on vol 1 for L H Goodrick, and 1 dollar each from J M Hurt and G W Harrison. S E Shepard, Aloa, P. vol 3 for E Rockwell and W Evans. W Hayden, Streetsborough, O. vol 2 for H B Seymore, vol 3 for S E Edwards, C Judd, D Hays, S Hayden, and J Henry. E M'Gehee, Sandy River Church, Va. vol 2 for H S Guthrey, and 1 dollar for F T Woolton. M Stapp, Milton, Ind. vol. 2 and 3. L M'Whorter, Pleasant Exchange, Ten. vols 2 and 3, and 50 cts. on vol 4, N Burrus, Kikton, Ky, vol 2 for A Buckner, and vols 1 and 2 for J Watkins. R Hays, Coshocton, O. vol 2. T S Alderson, Columbia, Ten, vol 3 for J Brown, F, Askew, T Brooks, T Brown, and himself. L J Fleming, Jun. Lexington, Ky. vol 2 for C Ware, and 1 dollar for A Smith, and vol 3 for J Williams, S G Earle, Earle's Store, S. C. vol 3 for S M'Clenahan, R Forster, J Harrison, W H Underwood, J M'Pherson, E M'Pherson, S Smith, and himself. W A Scranton, Rochester, N. Y. vol 3 for S Smalley and G Hill. W Bootwright, Richmond, Va. vols 1, 2, and 3 for Griffin, C L M Hawerton, M Drewry, J B Pitkin, and J S Sydnor, and vols 2 and 3 for Anne M Carlton, volume 2 for J Atkinson, and vol 3 for J Bootwright, W Dibney, J Bosher, G Haines J Winn, G R Myers T J Glenn. B Jones, T H F x. E R dd. W J R Calfield, J Shock, B F Lester, J G Davis. Mary Kinnard, J L Nelson, D Baker ??? J R Ratcliffe, W B Clarke, W Booth, J B Prentis. J P Smith, C Talley, H.J Anderson. and himself; J Smith, vols 1 and 2 and 1 dollar on vol 3 R Casey of Frankfort, Ky. J Stapleton, Cincinnati, O. vols 2 and 3 for A G Gano, vol. 1 and 2 for G. Rice; vols 1, 2, and 3 for J D Garrard and D Corneal. D Hook. Louisville, G. vol 2 for J Hook, and vol 3 for himself. L Richards West Stockbridge, Mass. vol. 3. J K Speere, Petersburg, Ten,. vol 2 for M Moore and J Billington, and vol 1 for B Harris and vols 1 and 2 for J M Watson. J Cockens, Canonsburg, Pa. vol 3. Receipts omitted, in our next. 
[The Millennial Harbinger, 3 (May, 1832): 193-240.]
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The Millennial Harbinger, Vol. III, No. V (1832)
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