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Benjamin Lyon Smith
The Millennial Harbinger Abridged (1902)


      In 1832, in an extra, Mr. Campbell says of


      75. Q. What constitutes a Christian?

      A. Faith in Jesus as the Messiah the Son of God, and obedience to him.

      76. Q. What is faith in Jesus?

      A. An assurance, founded on the testimony of Apostles and Prophets, that he is the Messiah the Son of God.

      77. Q. Does not this assurance draw mankind to him, and cause them to repose confidence in him?

      A. All who know his name and character will put their trust in him. [315]

      78. Q. What are the privileges of Christians as respects this life?

      A. They are all reconciled to God, justified, sanctified, adopted into the family of God, saved, and constituted heirs of God through Christ.

      79. Q. Are all these blessings, honors, and hopes, secured to all in Christ?

      A. Yes, by the promise and oath of God. God sware to Abraham that he would bless all the families of the earth in his Son.

      80. Q. What do the Scriptures mean by being reconciled to God?

      A. Just what is implied in being reconciled to man. When a misunderstanding, alienation, or enmity exists in both parties, they are said to be reconciled to each other, when the causes are removed, and when they are restored to mutual confidence, love, and affection. When alienation exists only in one of the parties, he is said to be reconciled to the other, when his alienation or the causes of it are removed.

      81. Q. Whether do the Scriptures represent that God has reconciled us, or that we have reconciled him?

      A. "God has reconciled us to himself," is the language of the book.

      82. Q. How did God reconcile us to himself?

      A. By teaching us that he could not approve or delight in us as sinners, by making his Son a sin-offering for us; thereby making it every way honorable and gracious in himself to forgive us our sins through the blood of his well beloved Son, whom he sent forth from his own bosom in proof of his love to the world.

      83. Q. What is meant by being justified?

      A. It is to have the remission of all our sins, and to stand as righteous persons in the sight of God.

      84. Q. Is it not, then, equivalent in effect to being pardoned?

      A. It is so used by the Apostles: "By him all that believe are justified from all things from which no one could be justified by the law of Moses."

      85. Q. What do the Scriptures mean by the word sanctified?

      A. To be sanctified is to be separated to God as respects our relation to him, and to have a purification of heart conformed to that state. Thus Christians are said to be holy as respects both their state, dispositions, and behavior.

      86. Q. What do the Scriptures mean by being adopted?

      A. Adoption, or receiving into the relation of a son, is the same act, whether God or man be the adopter. On as many as receive Jesus in his character as God's Son, he bestows the honor of an induction into the relation of children--of sons and daughters to the Lord Almighty. And more; he communicates to them the spirit of children, so that they can, with feeling, say, "Abba, Father!"

      87. Q. In what sense are Christians saved in this life? [316]

      A. From sin. "He shall save his people from their sins;" from the guilt, pollution, and dominion of sin in this life, and from its punishment in the next.

      88. Q. In what consists the inheritance or heirship of Christians?

      A. "All things are theirs." Angels, Apostles, and Prophets; the world, life, death, and immortality; Christ himself, "the heir of all things," is theirs, and they are his. Their inheritance is in the heavens--"incorruptible, undefiled, and unfading."

      89. Q. How many salvations are spoken of as belonging to Christians?

      A. Three. The salvation of their persons from all the dangers of the kingdom of nature; the salvation of their souls from the guilt, pollution, and power of sin; the salvation of their bodies from the grave and from all the punishment of sin. God is the saviour of all men, especially believers, from physical dangers; he saves the souls of them that fear him from sin and Satan. And he has a salvation to be revealed at the last day, an eternal salvation of the whole person, of which all who are found faithful to death shall be partakers.

      90. Q. What are the chief constituents of the present salvation?

      A. The remission of sins and the Holy Spirit. Pardon of all past sin is necessary to peace of conscience, and is God's free and first gift through faith in his Son, and immersion into his death and resurrection. When the heart is sprinkled from an evil conscience, and the body washed with cleansing water, ours is the spirit of love, joy, peace; for the reign of God is righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. Thus in the order of nature the reception of the Holy Spirit is necessarily subsequent to the remission of our sins.

      The chief promises to the Christian are:

      "I. Come out from among them, and be ye separate, and I will receive you, and you shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.

      "II. I will be their God and they shall be my people.

      "III. My Father will love him, and we will come and make our abode with him.

      "IV. I will never leave you nor forsake you.

      "V. Christ in us the hope of glory."

[A. C.]      

      Alexander Campbell. "The Christian." The Millennial Harbinger Extra 3 (August 1832): 349-351.


[MHA1 315-317]

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Benjamin Lyon Smith
The Millennial Harbinger Abridged (1902)