EMBRACING A VIEW OF THE ORIGIN,
PROGRESS AND PRINCIPLES OF
THE RELIGIOUS REFORMATION WHICH HE ADVOCATED
Originally By ROBERT RICHARDSON
Annotated by NewtonStein
VOLUMES-I & II, 2,000 PAGES
CINCINNATI - STANDARD PUBLISHING COMPANY.
Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1897, by ROBERT RICHARDSON, In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, for the District of West Virginia.
OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL
EMBRACING A VIEW OF THE ORIGIN,
PROGRESS AND PRINCIPLES OF
THE RELIGIOUS REFORMATION WHICH HE ADVOCATED.
By ROBERT RICHARDSON
CHAPTER 10 - ORIGINAL PAGES 901-1,000
CINCINNATI. STANDARD PUBLISHING COMPANY.
Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1897, by ROBERT RICHARDSON, In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, for the District of West Virginia.
ACTUAL PAGES 676-750
VOL-2 PAGES 151-225:
151 OPERATIONS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.
With several of your essays I have been not only pleased but delighted. Many of your remarks, too, in opposition to the errors and follies too prevalent in the re- ligious world, meet my own views and receive my warm and hearty commendation. In a word, I am greatly pleased with what appears to be your drift and aim — viz., to clear the re- ligion of Jesus of all the adventitious lumber with which it has been encumbered, and bring back the Christian Church to its primitive simplicity and beauty." Concurring with Mr. Campbell as to Christianity con- sidered as a dispensation, he goes on to say : " I do hope that, upon a more explicit declaration of your sentiments, I may find no cause to disagree with you as to what more nearly concerns the nature of that religion — the agency., I will say, which produces it in us. I do not wish you to consider me, at this time, as really differing from you on this point : I only desire to be better satisfied. Let me explain myself. " There are some among us possessed of strong apprehen- sions that you are disposed to deny the existence of the re- generating and sanctifying operations of the Holy Spirit on the spirit or the heart of man, and that you would ascribe all the religious effects produced in us solely to the influence of the written Word or the external revelation of God. And these apprehensions, permit me to add, are not, in all cases, the effect of any prejudice against you. For myself, I have said to others, as I now say to you, that I cannot think this of you. I have seen, indeed, many things in your writings which appear inconsistent with such a sentiment — a senti- ment which obviously goes to the annihilation of all hope for gracious aid in the Christian warfare, and, of course, to the annihilation of prayer for any such aid. A sentiment which would thus cut off communion with God, and let out, as I may say, the very life's blood of religion, I cannot think you would maintain. Still, however, I would rather see you more explicit upon this point : it appears to be due to your-
152 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL.
self as well as to others : and to a compliance with this wish I should suppose you can have no objection. "■ That the word of God is the instrument of our regenera- tion and sanctification, I have no doubt; nor would I think of saying it is his usual method (whatever he may in some cases choose to do) to operate on the soul independent of the Word. But that there is a living, divine agent, giving life and energy to the Word, and actually operating on the soul, is, in m}' view, a truth which forms one of the glorious pecu- liarities of the religion of Jesus : and thus I would say, in the language of the apostle, we are 'born again not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.' " This communication, elegantly written and marked by the utmost Christian courtesy and candor, was re- ceived by Mr. Campbell with great pleasure, and he remarked that there had not appeared in the " Chris- tian Baptist" a letter from any correspondent " more evangelical in its scope ; more clear and luminous in its object ; more unexceptionable in its style ; more per- fect in its soul, body and spirit." " I am not conscious," said he, in reply, " that there is one point of controversy between us in all the items of practical truth embraced in your letter. Whatever diversity of opinion might possibly exist between us in carrying out some princi- ples to their legitimate issue, I am conscious of none in the premises." . . . Speaking of the " agency" which produces the Christian religion in men, he remarks : " Were it not for the pernicious influence of the theories afloat on this subject, I would assert my concurrence in opinion with you. This may appear a strange saying, but it is in accordance with the spirit of this work. I have taken a' stand which I am deter- mined, by the grace of God, not to abandon. I will lay down no new theories in religion, contend for no old theories, nor aid any theory now in existence. For why? Because no theory is the gospel of Jesus the Messias. Nor can the GOVERNING PRINCIPLE. 1 53 preaching or teaching of any theory be the preaching or teaching of the gospel. And — please mark it well — NO MAN CAN BE SAVED BY THE BELIEF OF ANY THEORY, TRUE OR FALSE : NO MAN WILL BE DAMNED FOR THE DISBELIEF OF ANY THEORY. This position I hold worthy to be printed in majestic capitals. . . . Whatever the Scriptures say, I say. The only ques- tion with me is to understand each sentence in the light of its own context. . . . To make new theories is the way to make new divisions. To contend for the old is to keep up the old divisions, either of which would be in direct opposi- tion to all my efforts, and, what is still worse, in direct op- position to the decisions of the Holy Spirit." We have here a clear statement of the principle which governed Mr. Campbell throughout his entire life as to his utterances on the subject of spiritual influence. Knowing how the minds of the people were engrossed with theories of regeneration to the neglect of Scripture teaching, and how much such speculations contributed to maintain religious dissensions, he had resolved to discountenance every thing of this nature, and to con- fine attention to the plain declarations of the word of God. He could not be induced, therefore, to go beyond its simple statements into any inquiries respecting the unrevealed links in the chain of causation. By no means denying that influences were exerted in answer to prayer in regard to the conversion and sanctification of men, he presumed not to define their nature, and would neither propose a new theory on the subject, nor give his assent to any of those already in vogue. Mr. Broaddus had made a very near approach to Mr. Camp- bell's position when he said, as above quoted, "that the word of God is the instrument of our regeneration and sanctification," and that he would not say it was God's ' ' usual method to operate on the soul independent 154 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. of the Word." But when he added, " there is a living divine agent giving life and energy to the Word, and actually operating on the soul," he passed quite out of Mr. Campbell's field of view, the Bible alone, and entered the domain of theological speculation. Mr. Campbell could see no practical utility in this theory, as the reception of it did not in any wise tend to induce the supposed agency, and therefore availed nothing. On the other hand, its adoption at once changed the relations of those who embraced it to the word of God. Men could no longer esteem this " worthy of all accepta- tion," " greater" than the "• testimony of men," ' able to make ' them' wise unto salvation," or " quick and powerful ;" for the theory declared it to be deficient in energy and to be actually " dead," requiring some un- defined agency to give it "life." This Mr. Campbell could never for a moment admit, and it was in opposi- tion to this very theological dogma that, adopting the language of the proto-martyr, and in harmony with the saying of Christ, " The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life," he entitled his later edi- tions of the New Testament, " The Living Oracles." His love for that sacred volume rendered him jealous of every philosophy which would in the slightest degree derogate from its power and its sufficiency when brought into contact with the human mind. Such were his con- ceptions of the " glorious gospel of the blessed God," that he regarded it as embodying in itself " the power of God for salvation to every one who believed it," and as presenting, in the demonstrations of the Spirit and of power which attended its introduction, all the evidences necessary to the production of faith. He by no means doubted or denied the impartation and aids of the Holy Spirit, but as the promise of the Spirit was to believers POINT OF DIFFICULTT. 155 only, he could not admit that it was given to unbelievers in order to produce faith, as the theory in question re- quired. He, therefore, thus expressed himself in his reply to Mr. Broaddus : " If any man accustomed to speculate on religion as a mere science should infer from anything I have said on these theories that I contend for a religion in which the Holy Spirit has nothing to do ; in which there is no need of prayer for the Holy Spirit ; in which there is no communion of the Holy Spirit ; in which there is no peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, — he does me the greatest injustice. . . . All whom I baptize, I baptize into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. I pray for the love of the Father, the grace of the Son and the communion of the Holy Spirit to remain with all the saints. A religion of which the Holy Spirit is not the author, the subject-matter and the perfecter is sheer Deism. To a man who teaches otherwise I would say : 'Art thou a teacher in Israel, and knowest not these things .'' . . . The uncontrovertible fact is, men must be born from above^ and for this purpose the glad tidings are announced. Let us simply promulgate them in all their simplicity and force, un- mixed with theory, uncorrupted with philosophy, uncompli- cated with speculation and unfettered by system, and mark the issue." However clear the view Mr. Campbell thus gave of his position, and however proper, and, in a -practical point of view, sufficient the course he so earnestly ad- vocated in the interests of Christian peace and union, it must be confessed that the point of real difficulty re- mained still untouched, and that, for want of a full ex- planation of this, his views continued to be misappre- hended and misrepresented. For it was undeniable that " influences " independent of the gospel were ex- erted in regard to unbelievers in order to the production of faith. Admitting that the "power" was in the gospel I5t> MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. or word of God, the question which demanded elucida tion still recurred — Why do not all who hear the gospel believe and obey it? Why, out of a large audience who hear the gospel announced, will perhaps only one or two individuals receive it and act upon their convic- tions? Where all have alike the opportunity of hearing, why is the gospel brought into contact with the heart and mind of some and not of others or of all? Most assuredly there is a special influence here to be ac- counted for — an influence admitted by Mr. Campbell himself equally with his opponents, since with them he felt it his duty to offer up prayers for the conversion of sinners, which necessarily supposed a special divine in- tervention in their behalf. It was the conviction that such aid was to be expected, coupled with the natural and just longing of the human heart for some tangible, personal and sensible evidence of acceptance with God, that first gave rise to the mystical theory of regenera- tion, which, engrafted by Jacob Bcehler upon the more simple faith of Wesley, had at length pervaded almost the entire religious community. As this difficulty, there- fore, still remained to be elucidated in the further pro- gress of the Reformation, Mr. Campbell's reply at this period failed to prove entirely satisfactory to Mr. Broaddus. Hence, in his next letter, he said : " While many things in your answer, and many incidental remarks in reference to this very point, met my admiring ap- probation, I felt some degree of disappointment at the manner in which you considered it proper to shape your reply in this particular case. Your reasons are no doubt satisfactory to yourself; perhaps they ought to be so to me and to all. I have heard much said about your answer to Paulinus^ for it has excited among us a high degree of attention. Some of VIEWS OF ANDREW BROADDUS. I57 your readers are satisfied ; some are not. And though, upon a candid, careful reperusal of your letter, I think it justly due to you to say that you are an avoived J^riend to the Spirit* s operations in the production of genuine religion^ I must own that I could still wish you had found in your heart to dispense with what I consider an over-degree of scrupulosity, and to answer in a more direct manner. ... I must think you carry your scruples on the subject of theories and systems to some excess." After expressing his own disapprobation of mere theorizing, he adds the following just remarks : " It is to be lamented, indeed, that systems seem to please some professors of religion more than the good news of salvation by Christ, and that they manifest more solicitude for the pre- servation of their beloved plans than for the maintenance of vital and practical godliness. Touch every chord in the lyre of salvation, they still remain listless, unmoved, till the darling notes be sounded to which their spirits are in unison. Oh for the time when divine truth — the whole of divine truth — shall be relished as coming from God ! — when the souls of professed Christians, tuned by grace, shall respond to every declaration of the will of God ; now with holy fear^ now with lively hope^ now with '•joy unspeakable and full of glory/ and always with obedient faith that works by love.' This will not be till the Bible is taken in good earnest as the standard of faith and practice. Oh, sir, may God speed your efforts to call the people to this only standard ! May he assist us to plant this standard, this milk-white banner, on the heights of Zion, no more to be insulted by the parti-colored flags of creeds and confessions of faith waving over it !" While Mr. Broaddus was quite agreed with Mr. Campbell in his opposition to creeds as standards of faith, and in regard to the need of reformation among the Baptists, and, in some measure, even to the restora- tion of the " ancient order of things," he still clung tenaciously to his theory of spiritual operations in con- version, to which he seemed earnestly desirous of 14 158 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. winning over his highly-esteemed friend, the editor of the " Christian Baptist." In reference to the wish he had expressed that Mr. Campbell had given a more direct reply to his assertion that there was a spiritual agency, " giving life and energy to the Word and actually operatmg on the soul," the latter replied : " There may be questions proposed on subjects of which the Bible speaks which the Bible will not answer. For ex- ample, How does the Spirit injluence the minds of men? is a question I cannot answer from the Bible. But if I be asked, Does the Spirit regenerate the human heart? Does it influ- ence the minds of men .? I answer, the Bible teaches it does. But I have a great scrupulosity of mind in going beyond what is written on this subject in particular. The reason is, some speculative theory of spiritual operation is the very essence, the very soul, of every system of religion in Christendom. . . . If any man ask me how the influence and aid of the Spirit is obtained, I answer, By prayer and the word of God. Thus I will give direct answers so far as I think the Oracles authorize. " But I am governed more in speaking upon this subject by the following than by all other considerations: THE APOS- TLES PREACHED CHRIST, AND NOT THE HOLY SPIRIT ; or, rather, they preached the Holy Spirit when they preached Christ. So the Saviour instructed and com- manded them. They preach the Spirit with most success who say nothing about his work in conversion. So did the apostles. In all the sermons pronounced by the apostles to unregenerated persons, of which we have so many samples in the Acts of the Apostles, they never once spoke of the work of the Spirit in conversion. Not one example in all the volume — not one model of the discourses we every day hear about the work of the Spirit. The apostles remembered that the Spirit was not to speak of himself, his own officfe and work, but of Christ. Their good news, therefore, was about Christ crucified." BISHOP SEMPLB. 159 His earnest pleading, however, for the simple teach- ings of the word of God availed but little with the lead- ing Baptist preachers in Virginia, so long as he refused to commit himself to their favorite theory of spiritual operations. Some speculative view of this subject had indeed become, as Mr. Campbell well remarked, " the very essence, the very soul," of modern systems of re- ligion ; and because he would not go beyond the actual statements of the Bible in reference to the work of human salvation, it was natural that those opposed to him should avail themselves of the popularity of the theory of " spiritual operations" in order to create prej- udice against him, and that even good and pious men, accustomed to rely on what they called their " Christian experience," should stand in doubt of his religious posi- tion. As he continued, in perfect consistency with the principles with which he set out, to maintain the ground he had taken, this subject became a very prominent theme of discussion throughout his entire ministry, re- curring again and again in various forms. In order to avoid a too frequent reference to it, it may be here stated that in the following year (1827) Bishop Semple wrote a letter to Silas M. Noel, D.D., of Kentucky, which was published in the " Baptist Recorder," in which he remarked in relation to the letters of Mr. Broaddus, above quoted: " He [Paulinus] wrote some- thing last year in which he certainly went too far. He is now convinced (I am persuaded), and is guarded against our friend Campbell's chimeras." A writer, signing himself " Querens," in the " Chris- tian Baptist," then publicly called upon Bishop Semple to point out the " chimeras" which he attributed to Mr. Campbell. This Bishop Semple declined, saying that Sandeman, Glas and the Haldanes had been master i6o MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. spirits upon the same system many years ago, and had been effectually answered by Fuller and others. He added : " If I am called upon, then, to establish my assertions as to Mr. Campbell's views, I refer ' Querens' and all such to Fuller's work against Sandeman," etc. He says he is indis- posed to controversy, but adds : " If, however, I should be disposed to become a controversialist, I believe I should as soon enter the lists with my friend Campbell as any other, foi three reasons. One is, on the points on which we differ 1 am persuaded he is palpably on the wrong side, and it would not be a hard task to make it manifest. A second is, he is so much of a champion that to be beaten by him would not be so discreditable as it might be with some other antagonists. A third is, I think him a generous combatant with one who wishes nothing but fair play." To this letter, which Mr. Campbell transferred from the " Recorder" to the " Christian Baptist," he made a very kind and respectful repl3S showing that the bishop's plan of disposing of the matter was wholly unsatisfac- tory to the public. " The reflecting part of the community," he observed, " will say, Why not show that Campbell is wrong by the use of reason and Scripture, rather than by defaming him?" He concludes his answer thus: " As you have more than once commended many excellent things in the ' Christian Baptist,' and as you are now brought out or dragged out to oppose me, it behooves you to discriminate the things which you dis- approve from those you approve in the ' Christian Baptist.' And now, Brother Semple, I call upon you as a man, as a scholar, as a Christian and as a Christian bishop, to come forward and make good your assertions against your ' friend Campbell.' My pages are open for you. You shall have line for line, period for period, page for page with me. I pledge myself to address you and treat you as a gentleman and a Christian ouglit to do. You will not find an insinua- ESSArS OF PAULINUS. l6l tion nor a personality in all I may say of you. I wish to give you a fair specimen of that sort of discussion which I approve, and to show what reason, demonstration and Scrip- ture declaration can achieve with an able and an honorable opponent. There is no man in America I would rather have for an opponent, if I must have an opponent, than thee. Come forward then, Brother Semple — choose the topics, one at a time ; numerically arrange your arguments and proofs ; make everything plain and firm, and in good temper, spirit and affection show me where I have erred ; and if I cannot present reason. Scripture and good sense to support me, I will yield to your superior discernment, age and experience, one by one, the points in which we differ. And as this work is generally bound in volumes, your essays, the antidote or the remedy, will descend with the poison to its future readers." As Bishop Semple paid no attention to this earnest appeal, Mr. Campbell, after waiting some months, thought it due to the cause he advocated to analyze the bishop's two letters to Dr. Noel, in which he had spoken disparagingly of his views, and advocated creeds, etc. This analysis, though kind in manner, was searching in its range, and the result of the whole affair was de- cidedly unfavorable to Bishop Semple's reputation for ability and wisdom, while his character as a pious and devoted Christian remained unquestioned. During this period Mr. Broaddus thought it due to himself to state that Bishop Semple was mistaken in supposing that he had at all changed his views in reference to the ques- tions he had treated in his essays in the " Christian Baptist." He also took occasion to renew his effort in behalf of the theory of " spiritual operations," and for- warded for the " Christian Baptist" two very elegantly and carefully written articles on the work of the Holy Spirit in the salvation of men, in which he considered the reality of a divine influence, its principal effects VOL. u. — ^L 14 * r62 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. and its practical importance. He did not advocate " irresistible operations," or any of the particular sys- tems of the day, nor did he contend for a divine influ- ence of a mere physical nature detached from revealed truth, but admitted that there dwelt in the word of truth " a living principle which, when that word is received, has a never-failing tendency to bring forth the fruits of holiness in heart and life." The leading sentiment of the essays, however, was, in substance, " that we are dependent on the influence of the Holy Spirit to render the word of truth effectual to our conversion and final salvation." In his reply, Mr. Campbell said that few of the intel- ligent readers of the " Christian Baptist" would dissent from the above views. " If you, Brother Paulinus," said he, " discard the doctrine of irresistible operations upon unbelievers, you are happily safe from the systems which I have been so long combating and endeavoring to expose in my various essays on the work of the Holy Spirit in the salvation of men. I have contended that the Spirit of God has done something which renders un- belief and unregeneracy a sin in all men who have access to the Bible, independent of anything to be done ; and I have taught that it will do something for tliose who, from what it has done, are immersed into the faith of the gospel. What it has done has given strength to the weak, life to the dead and reclaimed enemies to God ; what it will do is to beget a holy spirit and temper — to fill with peace and joy and right- eousness tliose who believe. I will not, therefore, with the speculative philosopher, make what the Spirit of God has already done of none effect, to make way for something yet to be done. Nor will I ascribe everything to what the Spirit has done in the inditing and confirming the testimony, to the exclusion of any influence upon the minds of those who, through faith, have been immersed for the remission of sins MAHONING ASSOCIATION. 163 and this heavenly gift. . . . The whole world, with whom the Spirit of God strives in the written Word now, as it once did in the mouths of prophets and apostles, have no excuse for their unbelief or unregeneracy ; and those who have put on the Lord Jesus are invited to abound in all the joys, consola- tions and purifying influences of this Holy Spirit." Thus the matter ended as before. Both equally be- lieved that salvation was due to the work of the Holy Spirit. Mr. Campbell thought that in conversion the power was in the word of God. Mr. Broaddus sup- posed that the direct aid of the Holy Spirit was neces- sary to render that Word effectual. Both equally ad- mitted the presence and influence of the Holy Spirit in believers, and as Mr. Campbell thought it right to pray for the conversion of men, he necessarily admitted that some influence additional to that of the gospel was exerted also in the case of unbelievers. The only point, then, of real difference was simply the nature of this influence, Mr. Broaddus regarding it as a direct work of the Spirit upon the heart, and Mr. Campbell pleading the Scripture declarations that the Holy Spirit could be received only by believers. As to the nature of the influences or aids which the latter virtually ad- mitted in conversion, he at this period offered no opinion, and Mr. Broaddus had brought no Scripture evidence to show that the Holy Spirit could be received by an unbeliever, or that any such theory of spiritual opera- tions had ever been propounded in primitive times. Pending these discussions, the cause of the Reform- ation continued to make rapid progress among the Baptist churches. In the fall of 1826, Mr. Campbell attended as usual the Mahoning Association, which con- vened at Canfleld, August 25th, John Brown and John Encell being associated with him as messengers from f 64 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. the church at Wellsburg. On the day of assembling, Mr. Campbell preached at one o'clock, p.m., from 2 Tim. iii. 2. Adamson Bentley was appointed moder- ator, and J. Gaskill, clerk. Those invited to a seat were Corbley Martin, Sidney Rigdon, W. West, J. Os- borne, Thomas Campbell and Walter Scott, it being the first visit of the latter to the Western Reserve. The presence of so many able preachers rendered the meet- ing one of great interest and religious enjoyment. After completing its business with entire harmony, the Association made appointments for preaching on the Lord's day in the Presbyterian meeting-house. At 10 A.M., Walter Scott spoke from the nth chapter of Matthew ; Sidney Rigdon then delivered an address based on i6th chapter of John. After an interval, Mr. Campbell read the last chapter of Malachi, and pre- sented a view of the progress of the light of divine revelation, which was so grand in its conceptions, so striking in its illustrations and so comprehensive in its scope that it made a most profound impression, and was never forgotten by those who heard it. Having been appointed by the Association its corre- sponding messenger to both the Stillwater and Redstone Associations, and the latter meeting in the following week, Mr. Campbell, after tarrying at home one day, set out to visit his old associates of disputatious memory. He found that as at the meeting of the previous 3'ear they had rejected all church letters which did not refer to the Philadelphia Confession, so now the ruling spirits had resolved to carry out their purposes with unsparing zeal. The Association consisted of twenty-three or twenty-four churches, each entitled to a representation by three messengers. As Elder Brownfield and those acting with him were aware that they could not com- WASHINGTON ASSOCIATION. 165 mand a majority of all the voters on any motion, they determined to prevent those opposed to them from hav- ing any participation in the business of the meeting. Out of seventy-two voters they found only thirty to be in their favor, and these thirty messengers, accordingly, representing ten churches, constituted themselves the Association, and appointing their own officers, pro- ceeded to arraign, under the constitution, those churches which had not formally accepted the Philadelphia Con- fession. The fate of these churches was not long in suspense. The church at Washington, after having been denounced as Arian, Socinian, Arminian, Anti- nomian, etc., was first denied admission. Next the Maple Creek Church was brought up for trial and cut off, though the actors expressed great regret for its pastor, the aged Henry Spears, who was deservedly beloved. After this, the church on Pigeon Creek, with Matthias Luse as pastor, shared the same fate, as did likewise the rest, ten churches thus excluding thirteen. These high-handed measures, however, failed of their purpose, and ultimately recoiled upon those who insti- gated tliem. The excluded messengers immediately assembled at a house about a half a mile distant and requested Mr. Campbell to deliver a discourse, which he did, and upon their return home, having reported the case to their respective churches, most of these agreed to send messengers to form a new association at Washington in November, which was accordingly done. At the first meeting of this Association, on Friday, Sep- tember 7, 1827, the constitution drawn up at the con- vention of churches in November previous was adopted as the constitution of the Association. It was very short, making no mention of the Philadelphia Confes- sion, but declaring as the second article, "We receive 1 66 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. the Scriptures as the only rule of faith and practice to all the churches of Christ." As it gave four messen- gers to each church, Brush Run Church was repre- sented by Thomas Campbell, Joseph Bryant, John Kawkins and Joseph Matthews. Matthias Luse was chosen moderator and Ephraim Estep, clerk, James Phillips of Steubenville, John Brown of Wellsburg, S. Williams of Pittsburg and others present, were invited to seats, and after a pleasant meeting the Association adjourned to meet at Peter's Creek in September of the following year. To close the history of the Redstone Association, it may be here added that the party under Brownfield was as far from being at peace after the disruption as before, since it carried within it those dis- cordant elements which had been the cause of dissen- sion in the past. More liberal doctrinal views and a more favorable feeling toward missionary operations had been for some time gaining ground among the churches, and now began to prevail, while the hyper- Calvinistic sentiments and narrow policy of the minority became more and more confirmed by opposition. At length overtures were made to form a new association of the churches north of the National Road, and a con- vention held at the Forks of Yough in May, 1832, framed accordingly the constitution of the ••' Mononga- hela Association," with which the churches generally in this region became united. Elder Brownfield and a few others of the " elect" remaining disconnected. These became soon after involved in a suit at law with the others for certain church property, which, after causing them' much expense and trouble, was decided against the Brownfield party, so that the "final perse- verance" of those who had manifested so much hostility to Mr. Campbell, and so overbearing and self-willed a BRUSH RUN CHURCH. 167 spirit in the Redstone Association, reduced them at last to a dissevered, discontented and insignificant faction. The church at Brush Run, after its connection with the Washington Association, did not long maintain itself as a separate organization. It had already been greatly reduced in number b}^ removals. The spirit of emigra- tion and the project of forming a sort of Christian colony in a newer portion of the country, which had once be- fore been decided upon, but not executed, still occupied the thoughts of some of the members. James Foster, at length, in the spring of 1826, concluded to sell his mterest in the farm on which he lived, which he had ac- quired by his second wife, a daughter of Mr. Welsh, to whom, after the death of his first wife, he was married March 25, 1813. John Wilson and some others agree- ing to remove along with him, he purchased one thou- sand acres of land in Marshall county, near what was called Beeler's Station, and here formed a new settle- ment with his friends and established a small church, which, in process of time, increased and gave origin to others. In this retired and secluded region amidst the hills, whose pure fountains and limpid rivulets, mur- muring through deep and rocky dells, constitute the sources of Grave Creek, James Foster continued to re- side and to labor in behalf of the Reformation, rearing a numerous family in the simple and industrious habits of the early settlers. After his departure the few re- maining members at Brush Run continued for a time in connection with the Washington Association ; but as it was more convenient to many of them to assemble in the vicinity of Mr. Campbell's residence, a church was finally constituted there, and the meeting at Brush Run was discontinued. During the year 1826, Mr. Campbell was again called 1 68 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. upon to suffer domestic affliction in the loss of his youngest daughter, Margaretta, who sickened and died in the month of May, being then seventeen months old. Mrs. Campbell's health, too, seemed at this time to be gradually failing, and, as symptoms of pulmonary dis- ease began to appear, Mr. Campbell, after his return from the Associations in September, thought it advisable to try the effect of traveling and of a milder climate, with a view to her recovery. Setting out accordingly in November, he journeyed with her to Kentucky, ac- companied also by his eldest daughter, now about six- teen, but intelligent beyond her years and possessed of remarkable personal beauty. Proceeding by easy stages through Mason county, visiting many friends and preaching at various points, he reached Versailles in December, where he delivered a discourse upon the typical revelations of the Bible, based chiefly upon the fourth and sixth chapters of Nehemiah. The character of the theme was well suited to his peculiar powers, and such was the grandeur of the conceptions presented of the different dispensations, and so striking the applica- tions made to the existing conditions of religious society, that an indelible impression was produced upon the minds of those who heard it. He visited Louisville in January, filling also some appointments in Indiana, and passing thence to Nashville, spent some weeks there, preaching frequently, to the great delight of the Church and of the community, amongst whom the welcome strangers formed many agreeable acquaintances and found many warm friends. The church at Nashville, under the labors of Mr. Fall, was at this time fully engaged in the reformatory movement. The previous year it had declined uniting with any association, but during the fall of this year CONCURD ASSOCIATION 169 (1826) had concluded to apply for admission into the Concord Association on terms similar to those upon which the Brush Run Church had first entered Red- stone — viz., that no creed other than the Bible should be required, and that the Association should have no power to interfere with the order, doctrine or govern- ment of the church, if the latter was governed in all these matters by the New Testament. Quoting the code of government published by the Association in 1825, as declaring that this body " shall have no power to lord it over God's heritage, neither shall it have any classical power or infringe upon any of the internal rights of the churches," the letter of the church goes on to say : " We understand this sentence as saying that the Associa- tion has no power to determine what any church shall re- ceive as her creed ; or whether she shall have any creed or confession at all other than the Bible ; and, consequently, that she has no power so to lord it over God's heritage as to con- demn any church for holding or teaching any scriptural truths^ though they be at variance with the opinions of this body concerning such truths." To the basis of union thus defined the Concord Asso- ciation had sufficient liberality to agree, thus affording quite a contrast to the proceedings and spirit which about the same time caused, as already mentioned, the disruption at Redstone, and which were beginning to be more or less manifest in other Associations in different parts of the country. During Mr. Campbell's sojourn in Nashville his wife's health continued to fail, and she became fully impressed with the conviction that she would not recover. She was of a very thoughtful and reflective turn of mind, very calm, patient and resigned to the Divine will, and 15 170 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. with an uncommon tendency to look at every event in a direct, plain and practical way. Of this she gave her husband, while here, a singular proof. 'After stating to him one day in private her conviction that the disease under which she labored could not be cured, she went on to say that it would give her the greatest happiness to be assured, in case he should, after her decease, be disposed to marry again, and it should prove in accord- ance with his own feelings, that he would take her dear friend Miss Bakewell to be a mother to her children. Mr. Campbell, grieved that she should cherish such forebodings respecting her case, sought to cheer her with hopes of recovery, and exerted himself to the utmost to remove all melancholy anticipations. Finding him thus unwilling to share in those convictions of a fatal issue which she calmly entertained, she forbore at this time to urge the matter farther. It was, how- ever, soon after decided that it would be best to return to their home in Virginia, which they safely reached in March (1827), after a four months' absence. During this tour Mr. Campbell delivered many dis- courses, and gave great impetus to the progress of liberal views in the region visited, while at the same time he kept up the regular issues of the " Christian Baptist." It was his custom always, before leaving home even on the shortest excursion, to send on all the appointments for public speaking which it was pos- sible for him to fill, so that he had always before him a series of meetings, and addressed the public somewhere, in town or country, in houses of worship or in private dwellings, daily, and often twice a day, on the great themes of human salvation and the means of effecting a universal union among the people of God. To these great ends his life was consecrated, and to them all REAL CAMPBELLITES. 17' other matters were viewed as subordinate or merely accessory. The opportunity he had enjoyed during his recent tour of seeing more and more of the condition of religious society under the influence of modern systems, had but the more stirred his zeal for the introduction of a better order of things. Apart from his religious asso- ciations, he had also hosts of friends among those who made no profession of religion, who were won by his genial personal qualities and greatly admired his high intelligence and transcendent abilities. For such persons he felt ever a tender solicitude, and sought to use his influence over them so as to lead them to Christ, being well aware how prone men are to substitute personal esteem for a religious teacher, or an intellectual assent to some proposed system or plan, for the love of Christ and the obedience of the gospel. Hence, in retrospect- ing his tour, he said : *' While we rejoice in the assurance of meeting many of our friends in that blessed state where there is no more sep- aration, it must be acknowledged that there are some per- sonally attached to us, and we to them, from various reasons, concerning whose eternal life we can entertain but a very slender hope. It is perhaps natural, but so it is, that while we exercise benevolence toward all mankind, we more ardently desire the salvation of some than of others. Hence it is that on our list of friends there are some of whose salva- tion we are not always sanguine, yet from their social and merely human virtues, we feel compelled, with more than ordinary zeal, to exclaim, ' Would to God that they were not only almost, but altogether Christians !' The Saviour once looked upon and loved a young man of extraordinary virtue, who with a sad and sorrowful heart bade him adieu. . . . But this is a subject on which we can neither think nor write with pleasure. We shall, therefore, dismiss it with the ex- pression of a wish that none may construe attachments or 172 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. friendships, based on considerations merely human, into an affectionate regard for the Saviour and his disciples." The remarkable attractive power possessed by Mr. Campbell reacted upon himself, and he could not avoid feeling a peculiar interest in those who sought his friend- ship, as the magnetized iron attracts in turn the magnet ; but he had the faculty of lifting himself above all at- tachments merely temporal, and of rendering them sub- sidiary to the higher claims of a spiritual and eternal union. With regard to the Baptist communities which he had visited, he found them, to his regret, greatly de- ficient in congregational and family discipline, and ob- serving an order of things far from being either scrip- tural or beneficial. The practice of having but one elder or preacher for four churches ; monthly meetings ; sitting in judgment on " Christian experiences ;" specu- lative and textuary preaching, and the introduction of doctrinal questions even into psalms and hymns ; the great neglect of the study of the Scriptures and various similar aberrations from the teachings of the Bible, were noticed and lamented. During the previous year, Mr. Campbell had bap- tized among others at Wellsburg, a young lad, Cyrus McNeely, a son of Squire McNeely, of Cadiz, Ohio, who was a Presbyterian, but of somewhat liberal views, and with whom he used to stop in his early tours through this region. For a year after his baptism young Mr. McNeely continued to attend meeting at Wellsburg, dis- tant some twenty miles, and on the opposite side of the river. James Phillips had some time before gathered together a few members at Cadiz, and as he in the spring of 1827 removed to Steubenville, Mr. McNeely obtained a letter from Wellsburg, and united with the Cadiz Church. Being possessed of ability and moral MAHONING ASSOCIATION. 1 73 courage, and being a very decided and earnest advocate of the ancient order of things, he at once induced the church to commence the practice of weekly communion. This innovation upon Baptist customs became accord- ingly a matter of complaint at the meeting of the Still- water Association, which was held at Wills' Creek, near the border of Guernsey county. Among the preachers present, including Elijah Stone, Sedgwick, Pritchard, Headley, Headington and others of Mr. Campbell's old opponents in Redstone, there was but one, a Welsh preacher, Mr. Lee, who was in favor of allowing the practice. As the lay delegates present, however, were in favor of it, they outvoted the preachers, and the op- position failed. Thus, the people, beginning to inquire for themselves, had already advanced beyond those who assumed to be their spiritual guides. On his way with John Brown to the Mahoning meet- ing, which was to take place at New Lisbon on the 23d of August, Mr. Campbell called with Walter Scott at Steubenville. Mr. Scott had, during the spring, issued a prospectus for a monthly paper, to be called the " Millennial Herald" and to be devoted to the exposition of his views of the primitive gospel and of the coming millennium, in which latter subject he had become much interested, and on which he had already writ- ten several articles for the " Christian Baptist." Mr. Campbell had kindly noticed his prospectus in his June number, and as he had obtained some subscribers, he was, at the time of Mr. Campbell's visit, preparing to have the first number printed. After considerable persuasion, however, he agreed to accompany the latter to the meeting of the Association. At the first session, Mr. Scott, with Samuel Holmes, W. West and Sidney Rigdon, were invited as usual to 16* 174 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. take seats in the Association. In the evening, Sidney Rigdon delivered a discourse on John viii. On the following day, the first item of business to be considered was a request sent up from the church at Braceville, of which Jacob Osborne was elder, as follows: "We wish that the Association may take into serious con- sideration the peculiar situation of the churches of this Association, and if it would be a possible thing for an evangelical preacher to be employed to travel and teach among the churches, we think that a blessing would follow." Some other preachers, J. Merrill, with J. Secrest and Joseph Gaston of the Christian party, com- ing in, were invited to seats, and it was voted " that all the teachers of Christianity present be a committee to nominate a person to travel and labor among the churches, and to suggest a plan for the support of the person so employed." It was also voted " that a cir- cular letter be written on the subject of itinerant preach- ing, for the next Association, by A. Campbell," and that he deliver the introductory sermon of that year, his alternate being Jacob Osborne, who at this time was the moderator of the Association. After this, the com- mittee of nomination made the following report : " I. That Brother Walter Scott is a suitable person for the task, and that he is willing, provided the Association concur in his appointment, to devote his whole energies to the work. " 2. That voluntary and liberal contributions be recom- mended to the churches, to raise a fund for his support. "3. That, at the discretion of Brother Scott, as far as re- spects time and place, four quarterly meetings be held in the bounds of this Association this year for public worship and edification, and that at these meetings such contributions as have been made in the churches in these vicinities be handed over to Brother Scott, and an account kept of the same, to be produced at the next Association. Also, that at any time and PROVIDENTIAL ARRANGEMENTS. 1 75 at any church where Brother Scott may be laboring, any con- tributions made to him shall be accounted for in the next Association." This report being adopted, John Secrest delivered a discourse in the evening from John iii. Next morning, being the Lord's day, the Association met at sunrise in the Baptist meeting-house for prayer. At ii o'clock, A. M., Jacob Osborne delivered a discourse in the Pres- byterian meeting-house, based on first chapter of He- brews. He was followed by Mr. Campbell in a sermon from the close of the seventh and the twenty-fifth chap- ters of Matthew. A collection, amounting to $11.75, was then taken up as a commencement in accordance with the report of the committee, and a recess being taken to immerse some who had come forward, the brethren afterward assembled in the Baptist meeting- house to break the loaf, after which they dispersed, " much edified," as the minutes state, and " comforted by the exercises of the day." Such are the brief records of a meeting which proved to be prolific of important consequences, not at all fore- seen by those who were the actors in it. The unex- pected request from the Braceville Church ; the unusual course of the Association in appointing an itinerant preacher ; the accidental presence of Walter Scott ; his willingness to engage in the work ; the attendance and co-operation of prominent preachers from a religious denomination known as "Christians," who were now making many converts among the people, — the whole peculiar combination of circumstances, indeed, was such as Providence alone could have arranged for the accomplishment of a great design. Mr. Campbell was delighted that one in whom he had so much confidence, and who was, he thought, so 176 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. well fitted to promote the public interests of the Refor- mation, as Walter Scott, had so readily consented to enter into active service. He, in turn, overcoming the timidity and irresolution of his own nature, and over- ruled by the steadier purpose and bolder enterprise of Mr. Campbell, threw off at once all his entanglements, gave up his paper, dissolved his academy, and taking leave of his family, at once devoted himself to a laborious and active public ministry, in which he soon began to develop those latent powers which the quick perception of Mr. Campbell had long since noticed and admired. During the fall months, Mrs. Campbell's disease, which in the summer had seemed slightly alleviated, began rapidly to increase, and it soon became apparent that recovery was hopeless. Of this she had herself long been convinced, and looked forward to the time of her release with the utmost composure. Her chief de- sire seemed to be that she might first see her youngest daughter, Clarinda, able to read the New Testament. One day, when Miss Counselman called in to see her, she found her listening to her little daughter, now six years old, reading to her out of the sacred volume, upon which occasion she remarked that the Lord had granted her desire, and that she was fully ready to depart. A few days before her death she took the opportunity, when Mr. Campbell was alone with her watching by her bed- side, to renew the subject of his future marriage, and to express to him again her earnest wish that, as her de- parture was now nigh at hand, he would, should he con- clude to marry again and it should prove in harmony with his own feelings, choose her beloved friend. Miss Bakewell. Deeply moved and unable any longer to cherish the hope that she might be spared to him, Mr. Campbell could not withhold his assent, and his acqui- MATERNAL SOLICITUDE. 1 77 escence in her wishes gave her the utmost happiness. This was on Tuesday. The next day, Mr. Campbell was requested to go to Mr. Gist's, about one and a half miles distant, to unite a daughter of the latter in mar- riage with John Encell. He did not like to leave his suffering wife, but she herself urged him to go, and he finally consented, coming back immediately after the ceremony. Miss Bakewell had come out to attend the wedding, and came down afterward in company with Mary Encell to see Mrs. Campbell. All unconscious of what had occurred in relation to herself, she spent most of the day in singing hymns for Mrs. Campbell, in which the latter took great delight, especially in the one beginning, " We sing the Saviour's wondrous death : He conquered when he fell" In the evening Miss Bakewell was compelled to return to Wellsburg, and Mrs. Campbell died on the following Monday, October 22d. Shortly before her death, she assembled her five remaining daughters around her bed, and made to them an address expressive of her hopes and wishes in regard to their future course in life. After speaking of her gratification in knowing that they could all now read the Scriptures, she thus continued : " The happiest circumstance in all my life I consider to be that which gave me a taste for reading and a desire for under- standing the New Testament. This I have considered, and do now consider, to be one of the greatest blessings which has resulted to me from my acquaintance with your father. Al- though I have had a religious education from my father, and was early taught the necessity and importance of religion, yet it was not until I became acquainted with the contents of this book, which you have seen me so often read, that I came to understand the character of God, and to enjoy a finm and VOL. II. — M 178 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. unbounded confidence in all his promises. ... I say to you, then, with all the affection of a mother, and now about to leave you, I entreat you, as you love me and your own lives, study and meditate upon the words and actions of the Lord Jesus Christ. Remember how kindly he has spoken to and of little children, and that there is no good thing which he will withhold from them who love him and walk uprightly. " With regard to your father, I need only, I trust, tell you that in obeying him you obey God, for God has commanded you to honor him, and in honoring your father you honor Him that bade you do so. It is my greatest joy in leaving you that I leave you under the care of one who can instruct you in all the concerns of life, and who, I know, will teach you to choose the good part and to place your affections upon the only object su- premely worthy of them. Consider him as your best earthly friend, and, next to your heavenly Father, your wisest and most competent instructor, guardian and guide. While he is over you, or you under him, never commence nor undertake nor prosecute any important object without advising with him. Make him your counselor, and still remember the first com- mandment with a promise. " As to your conversation with one another, when it is not upon the ordinary duties of life, let it be on subjects of import- ance, improving to your minds. I beseech you to avoid that light, foolish and vain conversation about dress and fashion so common among females. Neither let the subject of ap- parel fill your hearts nor dwell upon your tongues. You never heard me do so. Let your apparel be sober, clean and modest, but everything vain and fantastic avoid. . . . have often told you, and instanced to you, when in health, the vain pursuits and unprofitable vanities of some females who have spent the prime and vigor of their lives in the ser- vile pursuits of fashion, . . . and what and where are they now } Let these be as beacons to you. I therefore entreat you neither to think, nor talk of, nor pursue these subjects. Strive only to approve yourselves to God, and to commend your- selves to the discerning, the intelligent, the pious. Seek their MARITAL TRIBUTE. 179 society, consult their taste and make yourselves worthy of their esteem. " But there is one thing which is necessary to all goodness, which is essential to all virtue, godliness and happiness; I mean necessary to the daily and constant exhibition of every Christian accomplishment, and that is to keep in mind the words that Hagar uttered in her solitude : ' Thou God seest me.^ You must know and feel, my dear children, that my affection for you, and my desires for your present and future happiness, cannot be surpassed by any human being. The God that made me your mother has, with his own finger, planted this in my breast, and his Holy Spirit has written it upon my heart. Love you I must, feel for you I must, and I once more say unto you, remember these words, and not the words only, but the truth contained in them : ''Thou God seest me* This will be a guard against a thousand follies and against every temptation. . . . " I cannot speak to you much more upon this subject. I have already, and upon various occasions, suggested to you other instructions, which I need not, as indeed I cannot, now repeat. . . . That we may all meet together in the heavenly kingdom is my last prayer for you, and, as you desire it, re- member the words of Him who is the way^ the truth and the lifer Such were the last words and some of the tender ap- peals of this address, which Mr. Campbell subsequently published entire in the "Christian Baptist," and which strikingly exhibits the calm resignation, the pious yearnings and the confiding, earnest trust of this Chris- tian mother and faithful wife, of whom in her obituary notice her husband bore this testimony : " The deceased was a Christian in profession and practice, and did in her life and deportment for many years recommend the excellency of the Christian profession to all her acquaint- ance ; and during her long illness, and in her death, she did exhibit to her numerous connexions and friends how tran- l8o MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. quilly and cheerfully a Christian can meet death and resign the spirit into the hands of a gracious and divine Redeemer. ' I die,' she said, 'without an anxiety about anything upon the earth, having committed all that interests me into the hands of my faithful and gracious heavenly Father, and in the con- fident expectation of a glorious resurrection when the Lord Jesus appears unto the salvation of all who trust in him.' " It was evident to all that Mr. Campbell felt his be- reavement most deeply. Forbidden, however, to sor- row as those without hope, possessed of remarkable control over his emotional nature, and prompted to cheerful activities by an innate unflagging energy, his sadness, chastened by Christian resignation, was re- served and silent, betraying itself only at times in the quiet moments of confidential intercourse, in the sub- dued spirit which marked his subsequent essays, and in the character of the brief extracts which he occasion- ally placed in the " Christian Baptist," as " The Dying Mother," from Pollock's Course of Time, and the beau- tiful passage from Irving upon " Sorrow for the Dead** — "the only sorrow from which we refuse to be di- vorced." Having been much dissatisfied with the character of many of the psalms and hymns in general use, whose sentiments he thought were not in accordance with the New Testament, Mr. Campbell was at this time en- gaged in preparing a hymn-book from which unscrip- tural sentiments were to be excluded, and which he hoped to render acceptable to the now numerous friends of the Reformation. This volume, published in May, 1828, contained only one hundred and twenty-five pieces, together with a treatise on Psalmody as a preface and an essay on prayer at the close, making in all two hun- dred pages. In addition to his other business, he was WALTER SCOTT. l8l now acting as postmaster. Having found it inconve- nient to send his letters and puiilications to West Lib- erty office, distant four miles, he had induced the post- office department to establish a post-office at his own residence, which was thenceforth denominated Beth- any, there being a post-town called " Buffalo" in Mason county. This was highly advantageous to him in many respects. Being appointed postmaster, he enjoyed the franking privilege, and was enabled greatly to extend his correspondence. As he was much occupied, how- ever, and often absent from home, he was under the necessity of employing constantly a deputy to attend to the business of the office, which he continued to retain at his own pleasure for thirty years, through all the different administrations and political changes in the government. Meanwhile, upon the Western Reserve, the Reform- ation had received an extraordinary impetus. Placed at length in a field where his religious aspirations and fertile genius had room for development, Walter Scott had entered upon his labors with a fervid zeal which silenced tirhid counsels and disregarded conventional impediments. He was then in the full vigor of life, being nearly thirty-one years of age, having been born in December, 1796, in the town of Moffat, and his preparation for the work before him had been ample. Educated at the University of Edinburgh, he had largely added to his literary acquirements by assiduous devotion to study and self-culture while engaged in teaching during the ten years preceding his appoint- ment as evangelist. Much more had he accumulated vast stores of accurate Scripture knowledge and en- larged religious observation and experience. His memory was thoroughly furnished with the word of 16 1 82 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. God ; his faith and love had culminated in an affection- ate personal attachment to the Redeemer, who was ever present to his thoughts, and his imagination had been fired by the glorious hopes and promises of the gospel, which he ardently longed to see triumphant, in its primitive purity, over the errors and corruptions of the time. Having an agreeable musical voice and graceful manner, a lively fancy replete with classical and sacred imagery and abounding in striking illustra- tions, he possessed many of the qualities of the suc- cessful orator. At the same time, his genius for analy- sis and classification, and his thorough insight into the nature of the Christian institution, enabled him to pre- sent its great and stirring themes with a force and clear- ness seldom equaled. The circumstances, too, around him were propitious. The churches had already been, in a good measure, liberated from the usages and opin- ions of the regular Baptists, and prepared to receive the simple teachings of the Scriptures. There was no longer that stagnation of religious thought which cha- racterizes a sect. There had been for some years a spirit of religious inquiry, and, with many, a diligent searching of the Scriptures, which had created a long- ing for a greater conformity to the primitive standard. There was, in consequence, a considerable increase of knowledge and a corresponding growth of liberality of sentiment, which had extended far be3^ond the Baptist community, and rendered the people of this whole re- gion more favorable to religious investigation. Other religious movements, too, had been for some time operating to weaken the power of sectarianism and to restore the Bible to its proper position. Prominent among these, was one in many respects nearly allied to the Reformation advocated by Mr. Campbell, and which CHRISTIAN CONNECTION. 183 was at this time making great progress in Ohio, under the labors of several popular preachers. Two of these, as already mentioned, John Secrest and Joseph Gaston, had attended the late meeting of the Mahoning Asso- ciation, participating in its exercises and in the ap- pointment of Walter Scott, and sympathizing in the principles of the Reformation. The religious body to which they belonged, had an earlier origin than that which sprung from Mr. Campbell's labors ; but as this was the first occasion on which the reformers came fairly into contact with the " Christian Connection," it will be proper here to notice the chief points in its history. CHAPTER VI. Reformatory efforts — " Christian Connection " — B. W. Stone — Religious ex- citement — Divinity of Christ — Joseph Gastoa— Office of baptism restored — Incidents — Aylett Raines — Ancient gospel. THE command to preach the gospel to every crea- ture impHed that it was adapted to the compre- hension of every creature. As the great mass of man- kind are incapable of comprehending abstruse and mysterious subjects, the primitive gospel must have been, therefore, something extremely simple in its state- ment and evident in its nature. Moreover, as this gos- pel was designed and fitted to save mankind and restore them to the favor and fellowship of God, it must have been equally designed and fitted to bring them into union and fellowship with each other. When men sub- stituted the incomprehensible dogmas of theology for the simple word of God, and when these, elaborated and systematized in the form of authoritative creeds, became the means of perpetuating division and aliena- tion, it is not strange that some, mistaking these systems for Christianity, should denounce it as false and injurious to society, or that those who loved the truth should re- gard with aversion those false divisive standards and those sectarian titles and designations by which religious partyism and strife were constantly maintained. While sectarianism had thus, on the one hand, been the fruitful parent of infidelity, it had, on the other, provoked those who perceived its baleful influence to seek its overthrow, 184 REPUBLICAN METHODISTS. 185 and to endeavor to restore to the world the simple gos- pel as it was preached in the beginning, and presented upon the faithful page of inspiration. The close of the eighteenth and the early part of the present century were remarkably characterized by efforts of this kind, originating almost simultaneously in widely- separated regions and amidst different and antagonistic sects. The one with which the Reformers were now brought into communication on the Western Reserve was itself a combination of several distinct and independent attempts at the much-desired reformation of religious society. One of these originated among the Methodists when the establishment of American independence had released them from all foreign controil and the subject of church government became necessarily a matter of discussion among them. Thomas Coke, Francis Asbury and others labored to establish prelacy, being them- selves regarded as " superintendents " or bishops. On the other hand, James O'Kelly, of North Carolina, and some other preachers of that State and of Virginia, with a number of members, pleaded for a congregational sys- tem, and that the New Testament should be the only creed and discipline. As the episcopal party, however, were largely in the ascendant, these Reformers were unable to accomplish their wishes, and finally seceded at Manakin Town, North Carolina, December 25, 1793. At first they took the name of " Republican Methodists," but, at a conference subsequently held, resolved to be known as Christians only, to acknowledge no head over the Church but Christ, and to have no creed or dis- cipline but the Bible. The success of this movement in the South, as it respects increase of numbers, was not great, and it was after a time weakened by changes and removals, but its principles were still maintained 18 • 1 86 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. by certain churches and a good many individuals throughout this region. Not long afterward, a physician of Hartland, Ver- mont — Abner Jones, then a member of a Baptist church — becoming greatly dissatisfied with sectarian names and creeds, began to urge that all these should be abolished, and that true piety alone should be made the ground of Christian fellowship. In September, 1800, he succeeded, by persevering zeal, in establishing a church of twenty-five members at Lyndon, Vermont, and subsequently one in Bradford and one in Pierpont, New Hampshire, in March, 1803. A Baptist preacher, named Elias Smith, who was about this time laboring with great success in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, now adopted Dr. Jones' views and carried his church along with him. Several other ministers, both from the Reg- ular and the Freewill Baptists, soon after followed, and with other zealous preachers, who were raised up in the newly-organized churches, traveled extensively and made many converts in the New England States, as well as in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio and the British Provinces. Those concerned in this movement also assumed the title oi '■'■Christimis" and adopted the Bible as the only standard of faith and practice. About the same period, a third movement of a similar character originated in Kentucky, under the influence of a Presbyterian preacher. Barton Warren Stone, who, on his own account no less than from his subsequent connection with the subject of these memoirs, deserves a more extended notice. He was a native of Maryland, born December 24, 1772. His father dying not long after, the family removed in 1779 to Pittsylvania county, Virginia, where he remained until about six- teen years of age. Being fond of learning, he made BARTON WARREN STONE. 1 87 great proficiency in the school to which he had access, and speedily mastered the ordinary branches of an English education. After the Revolutionary war, the Baptists, and then the Methodists, created great religious excitement in the neighborhood, and he -became greatly impressed and agitated in relation to religion. Vacil- lating between the two parties, and not knowing what course to pursue, his religious impressions soon wore off, and having determined to obtain a liberal education with a view of engaging in the legal profession, he entered, in 1790, a noted academy in Guilford, North Carolina, under the care of Dr. D. Caldwell. Here he found great religious excitement existing under the ministrations of James McGready, an earnest and popular Presbyterian preacher. Although the subject of religion had now become distasteful to him, he, after some time, consented to accompany his room-mate to hear Mr. McGready, upon which all his religious feelings revived with tenfold force, and for a whole year he was, as he states, " tossed on the waves of uncertainty, laboring, praying and striving to obtain saving faith — sometimes desponding and almost despairing of ever getting it." After a long struggle, he at length obtained peace of mind in a retired wood, to which he had resorted with his Bible, after hearing a touching discourse from William Hodge on the text, " God is love." After completing his course of studies amidst pecu- niary difficulties, he experienced a great desire to preach the gospel, but was again involved in disquietude and doubt in relation to his being divinely called and sent. Assured by his friend, Dr. Caldwell, that a hearty de- sire to glorify God and save sinners was a sufficient encouragement to make the trial, he became a candi- date for the ministry in the Orange Presbytery, and 1 88 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. placed himself under the direction of William Hodge, of Orange county, North Carolina. Here "Witsius on the Trinity" — a doctrine to which he had as yet paid little attention — was placed in his hands, and threw his mind into a state of great perplexity, so that he began to think of relinquishing entirely the study of theology. Finding some relief, however, after reading Dr. Watts' views on this subject, he appeared before the Presbytery and was examined by the Rev. Henry Patillo, a learned and estimable Scotchman, now advanced in years. Before the next session of the Presbytery, however, when he was to receive license, he fell again into a depressed state, partly owing to pecuniary embarass- ments, but more to the conflicting and abstruse doctrines of the theology with which he had been occupied. Concluding finally to give up the idea of preaching, he set out for Georgia to engage in some other pursuit. Here, through the influence of his brothers, who lived in Oglethorpe county, he was appointed professor of languages in an academy near Washington, wh'ere he taught with great acceptance until the spring of 1796. Being now provided with means to pay his debts and his desire to preach having revived, he resigned his position and attended the meeting of the Orange Pres- bytery, where he received license, the venerable old father who addressed the candidates presenting to each, not the Confession of Faith, but the Bible, with the solemn charge, " Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature." Such, however, was his sense of the responsibility of the ministerial office and of his own insufficiency, that during his early eflforts at preaching he became again so much discouraged as to think of abandonmg the field ; but being advised to go to the West, he at THEOLOGICAL PERPLEXITIES. 1 89 length made his way, through many dangers and trials, to the then small village of Nashville, being much encouraged by the result of his efforts in preaching at various points along the route. Afterward he visited Kentucky on a preaching tour, and remaining some time at Caneridge and Concord, in Bourbon county, his labors were so acceptable to the churches there that he was invited to become a regular pastor. Before doing this, having to visit Georgia to settle some busi- ness, he was appointed by the Transylvania Presbytery to visit Charleston, in South Carolina, in order to solicit funds to establish a college in Kentucky. It was during this trip that he became wholly adverse to the institution of slavery, from witnessing its results as he had never seen them before. From this time, he constantly used his influence in favor of every plan likely to ameliorate or change the condition of the African race, and inher- iting subsequently some slaves belonging to his mother's estate, in place of which he could have received money, he brought them out to Kentucky and set them free. Previous to his ordination, as he knew he would be required to adopt the Westminster Confession as the system of doctrine taught in the Bible, he determined to give it once more a thorough examination. This re- vived all his old perplexities in reference to the Trinity, election, reprobation, etc., as taught in the standard. These difficulties he had for a considerable time man- aged to evade by considering the above subjects as un- fathomable mysteries, and by dwelling almost wholly upon the practical duties of religion. But now, upon re-ex^mination, he found them to be essential parts of the system he would be required to teach. He, there- fore, with that candor which was a marked feature of his character, determined to tell the Presbytery the I90 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. state of his mind and request a delay until he could be better satisfied. Before the Presbytery was constituted, he took Dr. James Blythe and Robert Marshall, two of the chief ministers, aside and made known to them his difficulties. These they endeavored in vain to remove, and finally inquired how far he was willing to receive the Confession. He replied, "As far as it is consistent with the word of God." They concluded this was suffi- cient, and this therefore was the answer distinctly given by Mr. Stone to the question, " Do you receive and adopt the Confession of Faith as containing the system of doctrine taught in the Bible?" No objection being offered by any one, he was then ordained. The account of his subsequent mental trials which he gives in his autobiography, from which the above facts are taken, is strikingly graphic and exhibits the natural results of theological speculations upon a heart yearning for truth. "About this time," says he, "my mind was continually tossed on the waves of speculative divinity, the all-engrossing theme of the religious community at that period. Clashing, controversial theories were urged by the different sects with much zeal and bad feeling. No surer sign of the low state of true religion. I at that time believed I'.nd taught that mankind were so totally depraved that they could do nothing acceptable to God till his Spirit, by some physical, almighty and mysterious power, had quickened, enlightened and re- generated the heart, and thus prepared the sinner to believe in Jesus for salvation. I began plainly to see that if God did not perform this regenerating work in all, it must be be- cause he chose to do it for some and not for others, and that this depended upon his own sovereign will and pleasure. It then required no depth of intellect to see that this doctrine is inseparably linked with unconditional election ar.d reproba- tion, as taught in the Westminster Confession of Faith. Thej CAUSE OF UNBELIEF. 191 are virtually one, and this was the reason why I admitted the decrees of election and reprobation, having admitted the doc- trine of total depravity. They are inseparable. Scores of objections would continually roll across my mind against this system. These I imputed to the blasphemous suggestions of Satan, and labored to repel them as satanic temptations and not honestly to meet them with Scripture arguments. Often when I was addressing the listening multitudes on the doc- trine of total depravity, on their inability to believe and on the physical power of God to produce faith, and then persuading the helpless to repent and believe the gospel, my zeal in a moment would be chilled by the contradiction. How can they believe? How can they repent? How can they do impossibilities? How can they be guilty in not doing them? Such thoughts would almost stifle utterance, and were as mountains pressing me down to the shades of death. I tried to rest in the common salvo of that day — /. e., the distinction between natural and moral ability and inability. The pulpits were continually ringing with this doctrine ; but to my mind it ceased to be a relief; for by whatever name it be called, the inability was in the sinner, and therefore he could not be- lieve nor repent, but must be damned. Wearied with the works and doctrines of men and distrustful of their influence, I made the Bible my constant companion. I hon&stly, earn- estly and prayerfully sought for the truth, determined to buy it at the sacrifice of everything else. . . . " From this state of perplexity I was relieved by the precious word of God. From reading and meditating upon it, I be- came convinced that God did love the whole world, and that the reason why he did not save all was because of their un- belief, and that the reason why they believed not was not because God did not exert his physical almighty power in them to make them believe, but because they neglected and received not his testimony given in the Word concerning his Son : ' These are written that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing ye might have life through his name.' I saw that the requirement to be- 192 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL, lieve in the Son of God was reasonable, because the testi- mony given was sufficient to produce faith in the sinner, and the invitations and encouragement of the gospel were suffi- cient, if believed, to lead him to the Saviour for the promised Spirit, salvation and eternal life. "This glimpse of faith, of truth, was the first divine ray of light that ever led my distressed, perplexed mind from the labyrinth of Calvinism and error in which I had so long been bewildered. . . . " Let me here speak v/hen I shall be lying under the clods of the grave. Calvinism is among the heaviest clogs on Christianity in the world. It is a dark mountain between heaven and earth, and is amongst the most discouraging hin- drances to sinners from seeking the kingdom of God, and engenders bondage and gloominess in the saints. Its in- fluence is felt throughout the Christian world, even where it is least suspected. Its first link is total depravity. Yet are there thousands of precious saints in this system." About this period, the churches had fallen into a state of religious apathy, and the power of religion over the community seemed to be but feebly exerted. A reaction, however, soon began, and a great excite- ment occurred in the south of Kentucky and in Ten- nessee under the labors of certain Presbyterian minis- ters, among whom was the same James McGready whose preaching had so strongly affected B. W. Stone, while a youth, in North Carolina. Hearing of this re- vival, Mr. Stone, in the spring of iSoi, went down to attend one of the camp-meetings held in Logan county. Here he, for the first time, witnessed those strange agitations and cataleptic attacks which had formerly occurred under the preaching of Whitefield and others. Many of the people were struck down as in battle, re- maining for hours motionless, and then reviving in the agonies of remorse or in the ecstasies of spiritual joy. RELIGIOUS AWAKENING. 193 Young and old, saints and sinners, seemed equally subject to these strange affections, which Mr. Stone, after full consideration, believed to be the work of God, designed to arouse men to attend to their spiritual inter- ests. Upon his return to Caneridge, similar effects occurred under his own labors, and a protracted meet- ing being appointed in August, the interest felt through- out the community brought together a multitude esti- mated at more than twenty thousand. Methodist and Baptist preachers aided, several preaching in different parts of the encampment at the same time, and it was believed that not less than one thousand persons, among whom were many infidels, were struck down or other- wise affected with these singular agitations. It cannot be denied that great good resulted from the intense religious excitement which thus prevailed in various portions of Kentucky and Tennessee. Nor were its effects by any means transient, but were felt for some years in the rapid growth of the churches in general and in a greater degree of religious fervor. There were at this time several other preachers in the Presbyterian connection who coincided in religious views with Mr. Stone. These were McNamar, Thomp- son, Dunlavy, Marshall and David Purviance, the lat- ter being then a candidate for the ministry. As they boldly preached the sufficiency of the gospel to save men, and that the testimony of God was designed and able to produce faith, " the people appeared," says Mr. Stone, " as just awakened from the sleep of ages ; they seemed to see for the first time that they were respon- sible beings, and that the refusal to use the means ap- pointed was a damning sin." This departure from the doctrines of the Confession of Faith soon occasioned a virulent opposition on the TOL. 11. — N 17 ^94 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. part of those who adhered to it. The Presbytery of Springfield, in Ohio, arraigned McNamar, and the case came before the Synod at Lexington. Perceiving that the decision would be adverse, the five preachers above named drew up a protest against the proceedings and withdrew from the jurisdiction of the Synod. The Synod then suspended them and declared their congre- gations vacant. This act produced great commotion and division among the churches, and confirmed the seceding ministers in their opposition to creeds and au- thoritative ecclesiastical systems. They at first formed themselves into a Presbytery, called the Springfield Pres- bytery, and published an " Apology," in which they stated their objections to the Confession of Faith, and their abandonment of everything but the Bible as the rule of faith and practice. This called out pamphlets and sermons from the opposite side, and the views thus canvassed became widely disseminated. Soon after his separation, Mr. Stone called his con- gregation together and informed them that he could no longer preach to support Presbyterianism, but that his labors should henceforth be directed to advance Christ's kingdom irrespective of party, absolving them from all pecuniary obligations to him. He continued preaching, however, almost daily to the people around, and en- deavored to gain a support by cultivating with his own hands his little farm, toiling often at night to accomplish his task. Co-operating with his associates in the *' Springfield Presbytery" in preaching and planting churches, a year had scarcely elapsed until such an organization was perceived to be unscriptural, and was by common consent renounced, all agreeing to take the name of Christian, which they thought the only proper title for Christ's followers, and believed to have been VIEW OF THE ATONEMENT. 195 given by Divine appointment to the disciples at An- tioch. This step occasioned fresh attacks from the sects, but in spite of all opposition the cause advanced and churches and preachers were multiplied, the independ- ency of each congregation being recognized and all legislative and delegated authority abolished. Shortly after this (in 1807), Mr. Stone became much engaged in considering the difficult questions connected with the atonement, and published some pamphlets on this subject, objecting to both the Calvinian and Ar- minian views of it. The commercial idea of the atone- ment, satisfaction for debt, and that Christ died a tem- poral, spiritual and eternal death for sinners, involved, he thought, insuperable difficulties. Nor did the view that Christ died to reconcile the Father to men seem to him consistent with the fact that while men were yet sinners Christ was sent to save them, or with the Scrip- ture entreaty addressed to them, " Be ye reconciled to God." Admitting that men are " reconciled to God by the death of his Son" he regarded this restoration of union and fellowship with God as constituting the " atonement," taking this word in its ordinary ety- mology as compounded of at and one, and as signify- ing that God and man were thus once more at-one — that man, having received pardon through faith in Christ, and being made holy, was thus admitted to fellowship with God.* * The word " atoni'' was formerly spelled " attone" which indicates its proper pronunciation. That it is compounded of " a/" and " one''' is a mere hypothesis, and certainly a forced and awkward derivation. Coleridge re- marks of it in his appendix to his " Statesman's Manual : " This is a mis- iaken etymology. . . . Our atone is doubtless of the same stock with the Teutonic aussbhnen, versohnen, the Anglo-Saxon taking the "/" for the "j." Upon these words Prof. C. L. Loos thus remarks: "The simple verb is siJHNEN, to pay the ransom for anything; to expiate. The prefix aus denotes 196 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. Mr. Stone possessed a mind disposed to inquiry, bm one which could not long endure a state of indecision or perplexity, and must therefore soon settle down upon whatever view seemed to him the simplest and the most satisfactory. But the wonderful problem, How an infi- nitely just and holy God could forgive sin in harmony with his character, was not one to be resolved into a form so simple as to be fully comprehended by man's finite understanding ; neither was it to be disposed of by omitting to consider it at all. Hence the above inade- quate conception of this most vital subject, which left out of view the relations of the death of Christ to the Divine character and government, and confounded the cause with one of its effects, at once exposed Mr. Stone to the charge of Arianism, Socinianism, etc., and led to a protracted controversy, in which he manifested much ingenuity and ability, but was led into trains of reasoning more speculative than practical, and which were calculated to lead the mind away from the simple teachings of the Bible. About this period, the subject of baptism began to claim particular attention. Previous, indeed, to the great excitement in 1801, Robert Marshall had become satisfied that the Baptists were right in regard to this question ; upon which Mr. Stone tried to convince him of error, but in the course of the discussion was made so to doubt Paedobaptism that he discontinued the prac- tice entirely. The religious awakening, however, soon engrossed the minds of all, and for some considerable time baptism was left out of view. At length, many be- Ikorougkness, as per in Latin ; ver indicates reconciling with some one or some thing reciprocally. The noun siJHNE (the o and u are often inter- changed) is an offering or sacrifice, or other act of expiation — frequently an act of suffering, either by way of punishment or self-imposed." A NOVEL INVITATION. 1 97 Coming dissatisfied with their infant baptism, a meeting was convened to consider the subject, and it was con- cluded that each one should act freely in regard to it ac- cording to his convictions of right, and that it should be a matter of forbearance. As the Baptists would not bap- tize except on condition of union with them, and none of the reformers had been immersed, a difficulty pre- sented itself w^hich was overcome, as a similar one had been in the case of Roger Williams and his coadjutors, the preachers baptizing one another, on the ground that if authorized to preach they were equally authorized to baptize. The practice of immersion soon prevailed very generally among the churches, and even its design ap- pears to have been at one time dimly recognized by Mr. Stone. At a great meeting at Concord soon after, when mourners were daily invited to collect before the stand, and many of the same persons were often prayed for without receiving the expected comfort, "the words of Peter at Pentecost," says he, " rolled through my mind : ' Repent and be baptized for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.' I thought were Peter here he would thus address these mourners. I quickly arose and addressed them in the same lan- guage, and urged them to comply." The effect of this novel invitation, however, was the reverse of what was intended. Instead of affording any comfort, it only per- plexed and confused the " mourners" by directing their attention to an untried course of proceeding utterly un- known at " revivals," and for which they were wholly unprepared. While their hearts were filled with ardent desires for special operations of the Holy Spirit and of ^re, this unexpected presentation of water very natur ally produced a " chilling effect," as Mr. Stone after- ward remarked, and tended only to cool the ardor of 17* 19^ MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. their excited imaginations. Mr. Stone himself, indeed, quoted Peter's language on this occasion evidentl}' more from his anxiety to suggest some means of relief, and from his unbounded confidence in the word of God, than from an}' proper understanding of the relation of baptism to remission of sins. Hence, disappointed in the result, he declined to repeat the experiment, and when, subsequently, the doctrine of baptism for remis- sion of sins was publicly taught by Mr. Campbell, mani- fested at first some repugnance to it. This religious movement under Mr. Stone, rapidly extending itself through the Western States, had, some time previously, been combined with those two similar ones which, without concert or communication, had originated in the East and in the South. These three branches thus proceeding from the three principal parties — the Methodists, the Baptists and the Presby- terians — had then formed what was called the " Chris- tian Connection," agreeing in general in their views and having associations called conferences in each State, consisting of ministers and delegates from the churches, but exercising no control over them. The leading purposes of the entire movement were not to establish any peculiar or distinctive doctrines, but to as- sert for individuals and churches Christian liberty ; to escape the thraldom of human creeds ; to make the Bible the only guide ; to secure the right of private judgment ; and to follow the simplicity of the primitive Christians. While the features of this organization were thus, in a good measure, similar to those of the Reformation in which Mr. Campbell was engaged, there were some characteristic differences. With the former, the idea of uniting all men under Christ was predominant ; with DISTINCTIVE DIFFERENCES. 199 the latter, the desire of an exact conformity to the primi- tive faith and practice. The one occupied itself chiefly in casting abroad the sweep-net of the gospel, which gathers fishes of every kind ; the other was more intent upon collecting "the good into vessels" and casting "the bad away." Hence the former engaged mainly in ■preaching — the latter in teaching. The revivalist ma- chinery of protracted meetings, warm exhortation, per- sonal entreaty, earnest prayers for conversion and union, accompanied by a belief in special spiritual operations and the use of the mourner's seat, existed with the one, while, with the other, the matters of chief interest were the disentanglement of the Christian faith' from modern corruptions of it and the recovery of the gospel ordinances and ancient order of things. There had indeed been an almost entire neglect of evangeli- zation on the part of the few churches which were originally connected with Mr. Campbell in his reform- atory efforts. They had not a single itinerant preacher, and, although they made great progress in biblical knowledge, they gained comparatively few converts. The churches of the Christian Connection, on the other hand, less inimical to speculative theories, granting membership to the unimmersed and free communion to all, and imperfectly acquainted with the order, discipline and institutions of the churches, made, through an effi- cient itineracy, large accessions everywhere, and in- creased with surprising rapidity. They were charac- terized by a simplicity of belief and manners and a liberality of spirit highly captivating, and possessed, in general, a striking and praiseworthy readiness to receive additional light from the Bible. They gained over, consequently, from the religious community many of the pious and peace-loving who groaned under the evils zoo MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. of sectarianism, while the earnest exhortations of zealous preachers and their direct personal appeals to sinners obtained large accessions from the world. Mr. Campbell had for some years been aware of the existence of this body of reformers, and in 1824 had. at Georgetown, Kentucky, as formerly related, formed an agreeable personal acquaintance with B. W. Stone, which became still more intimate during subsequent visits. In the year 1826, Mr. Stone commenced pub- lishing a monthly periodical called the "Christian Mes- senger," which was well sustained. In this paper he had addressed, in the earlier part of this year (1827), a communication to the editor of the " Christian Baptist" in reference to an exposition which Mr. Campbell had given of John i. i, objecting to some expressions as tantamount to those of the Calvinists, and descanting upon some of the difficulties involved in their views of the Trinity. In the commencement of this article, Mr. Stone speaks thus of Mr. Campbell's labors and of the good effect they had already produced in correcting a tendency to theological speculation : "Your talents and learning we have highly respected ; your course we have generally approved ; your religious views in many points accord with our own ; and to one point we have hoped we both were directing our efforts, which point is, to unite the flock of Christ scattered in the dark and cloudy day. We have seen you, with the arm of a Sampson and the courage of a David, tearing away the long-established founda- tion of partyism, human authoritative creeds and confessions; we have seen you successfully attacking many false notions and speculations in religion, and against every substitute for the Bible and its simplicity we have seen you exerting all your mighty powers. Human edifices begin to totter and their builders to tremble. . . . Not as unconcerned spectators have we looked on the mighty war between you and your op RELIGIOUS THEORIES. 20l posers — a war in which many of us had been engaged for many years before you entered the field. You have made a diversion in our favor, and to you is turned the attention of creed-makers and party-spirits, and on you is hurled their ghostly thunder. We enjoy a temporary peace and respite from war where you are known. From you we have learned more fully the evil of speculating on religion, and have made considerable proficiency in correcting ourselves." He then intimated that Mr. Campbell had departed from his own principles in his commentary on John i. i, by indulging in speculative views concerning the pre- existent state of Christ, and goes on at considerable length to dwell upon the difficulties arising, on princi- ples of reason, from the hypothesis that the " Son of God," either under this title or as " the Word," had an independent existence in eternity. In the conclusion, however, he says : " We believe the intelligent person, the Word or the Son of God, existed long before he was called Jesus, Christ or Messiah." * * Mr. Stone was quite mistaken in supposing that Mr. Campbell designed to advance any theory upon the subject of Christ's pre-existence. This object indeed was expressly disavowed in the article referred to (C. B., vol. iv., p. 230). He desired merely to assist the mind of the inquirer in conceiving the relation existing between the Father and the Son, as set forth by John in the beginning of his testimony. Availing himself of his remarkable skill in tracing analogies, he, in a very striking manner, had compared the relation existing between an idea and the word by which it is expressed, with that indicated by John i, i between God and the Word. " As a word," said he, *' is an exact image of an idea, so is * Tin Word an exact image of the in- visible God. As a word cannot exist without an idea, nor an idea without a word, so God never was without ' The Word, nor ' The Word' without God ; or as a word is of equal age or co-etaneous with its idea, so ' The Word' and God are co-eternal. And as an idea does not create its word, nor a word its idea, so God did not create ' The Word,' nor ' The Word,' God. Such a view does the language of John suggest And to this do all the Scriptures agree. For ' The Word' was made Jlesk, and in consequence of becoming incarnate he is styled the Son of God, the Only Begotten of the Father. As from eternity God was manifest in and by ' 7%e Word,' so now God is manifest.
MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL.
Mr. Campbell commences his reply thus :
"Brother Stone: I will call you brother because you once told me that you could conscientiously and devoutly pray to the Lord Jesus Christ as though there was no other God in the universe than he.
I then asked you of what con- sequence was all the long controversy you had waged with the Calvinists on the Trinitarian questions. They did prac- tically no more than pray to Jesus, and you could consistently and conscientiously do no less.
Theoretically you differed, but practically you agreed.
I think you told me you were forced into this controversy and that you regretted it."
He then takes advantage of the occasion to lay down certain principles designed to correct the tendency he had noticed to speculation and theory in regard to matters utterly beyond the powers of human reason. He shows that when evidence addressed to reason has con- vinced any one that the Bible is from God, he is then to receive its statements as first principles without further question, and that while the terms used are to be understood in their usual acceptation, the things re- vealed are to be accepted, not because proved by rea- son, but simply because God has revealed them.
He then takes the ground that as the subject of the Divine nature is one confessedly beyond the grasp of human reason, there is nothing contrary to reason in the Trini- tarian hypothesis, any more than in the belief of its op- ponents in an Eternal First Cause. Thus he remarks, manifest in the flesh.
As God was always with ' The Word, so when 'The Word' became flesh, he is Emmanuel God with us.
As God never was manifest but by ' The Word,' so the heavens and the earth and all things were created by ' The Word.'
And as ' The Word ever was the effulgence or representation of the invisible God, so he will ever be known and adored as ' The Word of God.''
So much for the divine and eternal relation between the Saviour and God. You will easily perceive that I carry these views no further than to explain the nature of that relation, uncreated and unoriginated, which the inspired language inculcates."
LIMITS OF REASON. 303
" It is contrary to all the facts before us in the whole world that any cause can be the cause of itself, or not the effect of some other cause. No man from analogy can reason farther than that every cause is the effect of another, ad infinitum.
Here reason shuts the door ; here analogy puts up her rule and shuts her case of instruments. Now in this case the Unitarian and the Trinitarian are alike unphilosophic — alike unreasonable. . . .
Your error is this; you know nothing of the existence of spirits at all.
All bodies you know anything of, occupy both time and space ; consequently it would be absurd to suppose that three beings whose modes of existence are such as to be governed by time and space could be one being.
But inasmuch as we do know nothing of the mode of existence of spirits, we cannot say that it would be incompatible with their nature or modes of exist- ence that three might be one, and that one might exist in three beings.
Now, as no man can rationally oppose the Calvinistic hypothesis on principles of reason, so neither can he prove it to be correct by any analogy or principle of reason whatsoever.
Why then wage this warfare?
We may dis- prove a theory by what the Bible declares, but not by our reasoning on such topics.
Why not, then, abide in the use of the Bible terms alone? . . .
But I adopt neither system, and will fight for none. I believe that God so loved the world that he sent his only begotten Son ; that Jesus was the Son of God, in the true, full and proper import of these words ; that the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God, the Spirit of Truth.
Mr. Campbell's idea of the limited range of human reason is poetically and beautifully expressed by Coleridge at the close of his Biographia Lit- eraria : " Religion," says he, " passes out of the ken of reason only when the eye of reason has reached its own horizon ; and faith is then but its con- tinuation ; even as the day softens away into the sweet twilight, and twilight, hushed and breathless, steals into the darkness. It is night, sacred night !
The upraised eye views only the starry heaven which manifests itself alone ; and the outward beholding is fixed on the sparks twinkling in the awful depth, though suns of other worlds, only to preserve the soul steady and collected in its pure act of inward adoration to the great I AM, and to the filial Word that reaffirmeth it fi-om eternity to eternity, whose choral echo is the universe :
204 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL.
of Christ, which was sent by the concurrence of the Father and the Son to attest and establish the truth, and remain a comforter, an advocate on earth when Jesus entered the heav- ens. If any man's faith in this matter is stronger or greater than mine, I have no objection. I only request him not to despise my weakness, and I will not condemn his strength."
I am truly sorry to find that certain opinions called Arian or Unitarian, or something else, are about becoming the badge of a people assuming the sacred name of Christian ; and that some peculiar views of atonement or reconciliation are likely to become characteristic of a people who have claimed the high character and dignified relation of the Church of Christ.
I do not say that such is yet the fact ; but things are, in my opinion, looking that way ; and if not suppressed in the bud, the name Christian will be as much a sectarian name as Lutheran, Methodist or Presbyterian."
Upon these simple principles, Mr. Campbell thus, in a few words, reduced to naught the religious controversies of centuries, and pointed out at once the folly of attempting to be " wise above what is written," and the wisdom of knowing what is actually revealed. Mr. Stone had endeavored to establish his views of the Deity against those of the Trinitarians ; the true principle presented by Mr. Campbell showed that both were equally un- reasonable and unprofitable.
The course of the former
tended to justify discussions which had for ages broken
religious society into fragments ; that of the latter indi-
cated the only basis on which a true Christian union
could ever be re-established.
Such being the friendly relations existing between
these two bodies of R.eformers, it was natural that the
preachers of the Christian Connection on the Western
Reserve should have taken an active interest in the pro-
ceedings of the Mahoning Association and in the ap-
pointment of Walter Scott as an itinerant.
PROVIDENTIAL GUIDINGS. 205
It was indeed the great success of the Christian preachers in gaining converts that had awakened the churches of the Association to the importance of making an effort in that direction ; for, having largely imbibed the spirit of the movement directed by Mr. Campbell, and being much occupied with their own improvement in Scripture knowledge and with questions of church order, they had neglected for some time to make proper evangelizing efforts, and were receiving, consequently, very few ad- ditions.
One of the two Christian preachers present at the Association, John Secrest, was particularly noted for the large number of converts he was in the habit of reporting. The other, Joseph Gaston, was distinguished for his piety and his mild and unassuming disposition.
He was a young man, tall in stature, with dark hair, a large head, broad shoulders and agreeable features, and possessed a deep, sonorous voice and great powers of exhortation. He was full of affection for men and zeal for the cause of Christ, and devoted himself with great energy to the promotion of Christian union upon the Bible. As soon as he and Walter Scott became ac- quainted, they formed a warm attachment for each other, and their intercourse tended to modify each other's views and modes of proceeding.
Mr. Scott admired Mr. Gas- ton's powerful appeals to sinners. The latter, on the other hand, was attracted by Mr. Scott's warm feelings and amiable qualities, as well as profoundly impressed by his thorough knowledge of the Scriptures ; and being a sincere lover of truth, he listened with interest to the clearer views of the gospel and its institutions which were presented to him. The providence which had led to the appointment of Walter Scott as an itinerant was not long in developing its meaning. Brought into immediate communication 18
206 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL.
with the Christian preachers, who, as remarked, were laboring with much success, he imbibed somewhat of their spirit, but he was still far from approving all their views or modes of procedure. At the same time he perceived the ineffectiveness of the course heretofore pursued by the Haldanean and other churches in the Reformation in presenting the gospel theoretically, so to speak, without making a direct and practical application of its requirements to the unconverted.
There seemed to be a link wanting to connect an avowed faith in Christ with an immediate realization of the promises of the gospel. These seemed placed at an almost infinite distance from the penitent, bowed down under a sense of guilt, and longing for some certain evidence of ac- ceptance, which he often vainly sought in the special spiritual illuminations upon which men were taught to rely.
The Mahoning Association, being itself in a transition state, had prescribed to Mr. Scott no particular course whatever, simply appointing him as an evangelist " to travel and teach among the churches,*' partly with a view of bringing them more fully upon Reformation ground, but chiefly in order that, by means of itinerant labor and the quarterly meetings designated, their num- bers might be augmented. It was his duty, therefore, to consider how the proclamation of the gospel could be rendered most effective for the conversion of sinners. This was, in view of all the circumstances, a very difficult and perplexing question.
Calvinistic views still lingered to a large extent among the Mahoning churches. Election, effectual calling, theories of regen- eration, still occupied the minds of many. Various satisfactory evidences of a true faith were still required before admission to baptism, which was looked upon as a means of admission into the Church — a command to be obeyed by those who were already converted.
BAPTISM FOR REMISSION OF SINS. 207
PLEDGE of PARDON:
No special promises were recognized as connected with it, and it was very unusual to hear this subject presented at all, except when some one was about to be baptized.
Mr. Scott, Elder Bentley and some others of the prominent preachers, were indeed aware that Mr. Campbell had spoken of it at the McCalla debate as a pledge of pardon, but in this point of view it was, as yet, contem- plated only theoretically, none of them having so understood it when they were themselves baptized, and being yet unable properly and practically to realize or appre- ciate its importance in this respect.
Hence, almost from the first moment of his appointment, Mr. Scott's mind was thrown into a state of great perplexity amidst the discordant and confused views relating to conversion.
Baptism still seemed to present itself as in some way in- timately connected with the personal enjoyment of the blessings of the gospel, but he was unable as yet to per- ceive the exact position which it occupied in relation to other requirements. About this time, Adamson Bentley went down to Braceville, with Jacob Osborne, to hold a meeting.
In a discourse which he delivered on the occasion he was led to speak of baptism, and gave the views which Mr. Campbell had presented in the McCalla debate, affirm-ing that it was designed to be a pledge of remission of sins.
While they were on their way back to Wan en, after meeting, Jacob Osborne said, " Well, Brother Bentley, you have christened baptism to-day."
"How so?" said Mr. Bentley.
"You termed it a remitting institution.'"
"Well," rejoined Mr. Bentley, " I do not see how this conclusion is to be avoided with the Scrip- tures before us."
It is the truth," said Mr. Osborne, who was a great student of the Bible ; " and I have for
208 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL.
some time thought that the waters of baptism must stand in the same position to us that the blood of sacrifices did to the Jews.'
The blood of bulls and of goats could never take away sins,' as Paul declares, yet when offered at the altar by the sinner he had the divine as- surance that his sin was forgiven him.
This blood was merely typical of the blood of Christ, the true sin-offering to which it pointed prospectively, and it seems to me that the water in baptism, which has no power in itself to wash away sins, now refers retrospectively to the purifying power of the blood of the Lamb of God."
Soon afterward, meeting with Mr. Scott, they all three went down to Rowland, and the discourse at Braceville and subsequent conversation being brought up, Mr. Scott fully coincided in the views expressed. In one of his discourses at Rowland, Mr. Osborne again introduced the subject, and proceeded to say further that no one had the promise of the Holy Spirit until after baptism.
This remark seemed to strike Mr. Scott with surprise, and after the meeting he said to Mr. Osborne, "You are a man of great courage;" and turning to Mr. Bentley, he added :
" Do you not think so, Brother Bentley."
"Why?" said Mr. Bentley.
" Because," said he, " he ventured to assert to-day that no one had a right to expect the Holy Spirit until after baptism."
From this moment, Mr. Scott's mind seemed to be engrossed with the consideration of the consecutive order appropriate to the various items in the gospel, and being greatly given to analysis and arrangement, he proceeded to place them thus:
[NOTE: If true, . . .
This view relieved at once his previous perplexities, and the gospel, with its items thus regularly disposed, seemed to him almost like a new revelation. He felt
that he had now obtained a clue which would extricate men's minds from the labyrinth in which they were in- volved in relation to conversion, and enable him to pre- sent the gospel in all its original simplicity. While meditating on these things, and debating with his own irresolution in regard to their presentation to the public, he met with Joseph Gaston, to whom he freely communicated his thoughts, and who, delighted with the new view of the gospel thus given, at once declared it to be the truth, and that it ought to be preached to the world.
Thus encouraged, Mr. Scott determined to make the experiment ; but fearing to give cause of offence to the churches who had employed him, he sent an appointment outside of the Association ground, and with considerable trepidation, but in an earnest and interesting manner, laid before the audience his analysis of the gospel, and at the close gave a formal invitation to any so disposed to come forward and be baptized for the remission of sins.
No one, however, came. The effort was a failure.
This, indeed, might have been anticipated. The whole community were filled with the notion that some special spiritual influence was to be exerted upon men's hearts — that some supernatural visitation must occur before any one could be a fit subject for baptism.
This spiritual operation, too, all had been taught to regard as the evidence of acceptance and pardon, and hence when they were simply invited to come directly forward and be baptized for the remission of sins, they were filled with amazement that any one should thus propose to dispense with all the usual processes to which " mourners" and penitents were subjected. L
ike the Syrian noble, they were offended because the usual ceremonies were not observed, and because they were
VOL. II.— 18 * 2IO MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL.
merely directed to " wash and be clean." None of them had ever witnessed or heard of such a proceeding. They could find no precedent for it among all the rites and ceremonies of the religious parties, and hence, being without the authority conferred by usage, they could regard it only as an innovation. It was not there- fore strange that no one ventured to comply with the invitation, and that the discourse seemed to have been preached in vain.
With regard to Mr. Scott himself, however, it was by no means fruitless. He had now broken through the restraints imposed by a general but false religious sentiment. He had assumed a position which required to be maintained, and as he had now overcome the difficulties connected with the first step, he felt encouraged to proceed. More especially had his effort awakened in his own mind new trains of thought and given him wider and better views of the whole subject, so that he felt himself prepared to pre- sent it in a much more full and forcible manner.
He determined, therefore, to assume the whole responsi- bility, and to preach boldly in the very place where he had received his appointment the sacred truths which burned within his own heart. He accordingly gave notice that he would deliver in New Lisbon a series of discourses upon the Ancient Gospel.
At the time appointed there was a considerable audi- ence, and the novel manner in which the speaker intro- duced his theme, along with his own obvious, intense engagedness and excitement, created no little interest and expectation. His discourse was based upon Peter's confession. Matt. xvi. i6, in connection with the same apostle's answer to the inquiry,
"What shall we do?" given to the penitents on the day of Pentecost. Acts ii. 38.
As the lordship and glory of Christ, the Son of
God, was his favorite theme, and he was, on this occa- sion, animated with more than usual fervor, he became most eloquent, and held the audience in a state of rapt attention as he gradually developed the power of the simple but comprehensive Christian creed — the rock which Christ announced as the foundation on which he would build his Church ; the grand proposition proved by the miracles of fulfilled prophecy, supernatural wis- dom, divine love, healing power and victory over the grave, detailed by the evangelists, that men might be- lieve, and, "believing, have life through his name."
And when he went on to show how this gospel was administered in the beginning, and that believers were baptized into the name and into the death of Christ, and being thus buried with him and raised again to a new life, received in this symbolic act the remission of sins and the promised Holy Spirit, which was the seal of the Christian covenant and the earnest of an eternal inheritance, his hearers, while charmed with such a novel view of the simplicity and completeness of the gospel, were, as on the former occasion, filled with doubt and wonder and were ready to ask each other,
" How can these things be?"
Just as he was about closing his long discourse, and while he was exhorting the people to trust in the word of God in preference to all human systems of religion, a stranger entered the assembly, and when, a few mo- ments afterward, the speaker closed by again quoting Peter's words and inviting any present to come forward and be baptized for the remission of sin's, this stranger, to the surprise of all, at once stepped forward and pre- sented himself.
Here was a singular circumstance. This person had not been enlightened and convinced by the preacher, for he had heard only his few closing
212 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL.
remarks. Yet he came forward with all the firmness of an assured purpose, and all the tokens of intelligent apprehension, to request baptism for the remission of sins ! Mr. Scott knew not what to think of it. The individual, when carefully questioned, seemed perfectly to understand the matter, just as did the preacher him- self.
There being, therefore, no ground for objection and no reason for delay, Mr. Scott, taking the confes- sion of the candidate, baptized him in presence of a large concourse "for the remission of sins " thus an- nexing to the usual formula the words of Peter, Acts ii. 38, explanatory of the purpose of the institution.
The people were filled with bewilderment at the strange truths brought to their ears, and now exemplified before their eyes in the baptism of a penitent for a purpose which now, on the 18th of November, 1827, [Campbell about age 40, Stone about age 55 for the first time since the primitive ages was fully and prac- tically realized.
A great excitement at once ensued ; the subject was discussed everywhere through the town, and Mr. Scott, continuing daily to address increasing audiences and developing his views of the gospel in all its parts, succeeded, before the close of the meeting, in inducing in all seventeen persons to accept the primitive faith and baptism.
Thus the charm was broken ; the word of God had triumphed, and the veil which theology had cast over men's hearts was removed. Henceforth the Reformation, which had already restored to the Church the ancient order of things and the simplicity of the primitive faith, was enabled to make a practical application of the gospel to the conversion of the world. In reflecting upon the circumstances connected with his appointment, and the suggestions and encourage- ments he had providentially received, Mr. Scott could easily perceive how he had himself been led to decisions
KEYS OF THE KINGDOM. 213
It remained, however, still a mystery that his first two discourses should have failed to con- vince any one, and that at the close of the second an individual who had heard neither of them should have come forward intelligently with little more than a sim- ple invitation. In order to clear up the matter, he thought best after some time to address a letter to the individual in question, requesting him to explain the reasons which had induced him to present himself.
To this he replied as follows : " In order to show these things aright, I must go back a piece. I was at that time a member of that strait sect called Presbyterians, taught many curious things, as election, fore- ordination, etc. ; that belief in these things was necessary ; that this faith resulted from some secret impulse ; and worse, that I could not believe ; and finally, that I must hope and pray that God would have mercy upon me.
In this wilderness I became wearied, turned about and came home to the book of God, took it up as if it had dropped from heaven, and read it for myself just one year. "This inquiry led me to see that:
God so loved the world as to give his only begotten Son, that whosoever believed on him might not perish, but have eternal life.
I then inquired how I must believe.
I then moved a little forward
214 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. till I found these words, ' And they were all pricked to the heart, and said to Peter and to the other apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Peter said, Repent and be bap- tized every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ, for the re- mission of sins,' etc. To this Scripture I often resorted ; I saw how Peter had opened the kingdom and the door into it, but to my great disappointment I saw no man to introduce me, though I prayed much and often for it. " Now, my brother, I will answer your questions. I was baptized on the iSth of November, 1827, and will relate to you a circumstance which occurred a few days before that date. I had read the second chapter of Acts, when I expressed myself to my wife as follows : Oh this is the gospel ; this is the thing we wish — the remission of our sins ! Oh that I could hear the gospel in these same words as Peter preached it ! I hope I shall some day hear it, and the first man I meet who will preach the gospel thus, with him will I go.' So, my brother, on the day you saw me come into the meeting-house my heart was open to receive the word of God, and when you cried, ' The Scripture shall no longer be a sealed book. God means what he says. Is there any man present who will take God at his word and be baptized for the remission of sins ? — at that moment my feelings were such that I could have cried out, ' Glory to God ! I have found the man whom I have long sought for.* So I entered the kingdom when I readily laid hold of the hope set before me. " Let us, then, dear brother, strive so to live as to obtain an abundant entrance into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming, there to join with the heavenly throng in a song of praise to God and to the Lamb for ever and ever. VVm. Amend." The enigma was thus satisfactorily solved. So great a matter as the practical restoration of the design of baptism was not to be the result of the private studies or pubhc efforts merely of the preacher. Had persons been convinced and induced to present themselves for RESPONSIBILITIES AND TRIALS. 21^ baptism at his lirst or second discourse, he might have supposed that by his own power or superior intelligence in the Scripture he had caused them to obey. But it was ordered otherwise, that "the excellency' of the power" might be seen to be of God and not of man. Mr. Scott's heart and mind had indeed been providen- tially prepared and strengthened to deliver faithfully the divine message, but it was equally necessary that the hearts of the hearers should be prepared to receive it. Unfitted by false theories of conversion to accept the simple truth, and without one modern precedent to en- courage obedience to it, a special adaptation was re- quired on their part, which, under the circumstances, the preacher was unable to supply, and he therefore cast the good seed of the kingdom in vain until it happened to fall upon the good soil which had been prepared by God alone. The onerous nature of the task assigned to Mr. Scott on this cccasion should, however, by no means be un- derrated. It is impossible for those who have now be- come familiarized with the primitive method, to conceive adequately of the anxieties and fears and responsibilities which attended its restoration. The sanctions of cus- tom and the complete establishment of the truth before the bar of public sentiment have now taken away the reproach and discredit which attached to the first ad- ministration of baptism for the remission of sins. Then, the introduction of such a practice demanded that all the cherished interests which belong to position, charac- ter and life should be imperiled, and that all the odium and hostility which exasperated sectarian feeling could excite should be directly and personally encountered. To have been willing to brave such consequences for the love he bore to truth, and from his deep sense of 2i6 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. religious obligation, must for ever redound to the honor of Walter Scott, and the more when the obstacles arising from his own somev.^hat vacillating and timid nature are considered. It is true that, as to the import of the ordi- nance, he had before him the public declarations of Thomas and Alexander Campbell, which had become a part of the teachings of the reformatory movement. But it is equally true that as yet no direct and practical application had been made of these teachings, and that even those who had delivered them were far from hav- ing a just sense of their importance. The strange power which the human mind possesses of contemplat- ing things abstractly, and of separating matters which in reality are or should be indissolubly united, had here interposed and had arrested progress at the brink of the chasm which it had itself created between theory and practice. The same illicit severance, indeed, and in reference to the very same question, existed already in the case of the popular religious parties, whose creeds, almost without exception, assigned to baptism the same position and declared it to be for the remission of sins, and who, nevertheless, in point of fact, utterly neglected and denied the legitimate application of their own doc- trine. Thus the Presbyterian Confession declared, chap. xxviii., sec. i : " Baptism is a sacrament of the New Testament, ordained by Jesus Christ, not only for the solemn admission of the party baptized into the visible Church, but also to be to him a sign and seal of the covenant of grace, of his engrafting into Christ, of regeneration, of remission of sins, and of his giving up unto God, through Jesus Christ, to walk in newness of life." Calvin himself had made remission the principal thing in baptism. ASSURANCE OF PARDON. 217 "Baptism," said he (Inst., c. xvi., p. 337), " resembles a legal instrument properly attested, by which he assures us that all our sins are canceled, effaced and obliterated so that they will never appear in his sight, or come into his remem- brance, or be imputed to us. For he commands all who be- lieve to be baptized for the remission of their sins." John Wesley too had declared, in his " Commentary on the New Testament " (p. 350), that "Baptism administered to penitents is both a means and a seal of pardon. Nor did God ordinarily," he adds, " in the primitive Church, bestow this upon any unless through this means." The same truth was equally attested by Baptist and Episcopal creeds ; but all these theoretic concessions to Scripture teaching remained alike perfectly meaningless and inoperative in a practical point of view ; and even the more emphatic averments of the Campbells as to the purport of baptism would probably, like the recorded declaration of Peter himself on Pentecost, have re- mained fruitless, had not a guiding Providence unex- pectedly verified the correctness of the doctrine by a direct and practical application. "We can sympathize," said Mr. Campbell afterward, in reference to this matter, " with those who have this doctrine in their own creeds unregarded and unheeded in its import and utility ; for we exhibited it fully in our debate with Mr. McCalla in 1823, without feeling its great importance and without beginning to practice upon its tendencies for some time afterward." It is, hence, proper to estimate aright the agency through which a blessing of such inestimable value as the personal assurance of pardon was placed once more within the reach of believing penitents. The occurrences at New Lisbon were soon noised abroad, and occasioned a great commotion. From the meeting there, Mr. Scott went at once to Warren and
218 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. held a successful one there with Elder Bentley. Joseph Gaston, entering at once into the spirit of the move- ment, co-operated earnestly with Mr. Scott at subsequent meetings. All the leading preachers of the Association, as well as others of the Christian Connection, hastened to adopt that primitive order of the different parts of the gospel which was then no less a novelty, and no less im- portant in certain points of view, than the discovery of the practical relations of baptism, to which it had indeed directly contributed. Everywhere the confusion which had involved the subject of conversion was removed ; the mourning bench was abandoned ; an intelligent obedience was substituted for visionary theories, and a divine assurance replaced delusive frames and feelings. As a great many converts were now made to the primi- tive faith and received into the churches, those members who were still wedded to Regular Baptist usages, dis- pleased at seeing these wholly disregarded, began to manifest an active opposition, which subsequently, in the case of two or three churches, resulted in division. Mr. Scott, meanwhile, fully conscious of the momentous nature of the issues he had evoked, but confident in the power of the gospel and all aflame with zeal, passed rapidly, like a meteor, throughout the Western Reserve, startling the people by the abruptness and directness of his appeals, but exciting many to inquiry and obedience. As usual under such circumstances, the country was filled with exaggerated rumors and with the grossest misrepresentations of both his doings and his doctrines. Some of these reports coming to the ears of Mr. Campbell, he began to fear that Mr. Scott's precipitancy had betrayed him into indiscretions which might be pre- judicial to the cause ; and upon counseling with his father, it was concluded that the latter should visit the THEORY AND PRACTICE. 219 Western Reserve and examine for himself the progress of affairs. Upon arriving early in the spring, he heard Mr. Scott's presentations of the gospel and witnessed his direct method of procedure in the reception of con- verts with surprise and pleasure. He saw at once that what he and his son Alexander had plainly taught was now reduced to practice ; that the simple primitive method of administering the gospel was really restored, and that the rumors which had reached Bethany were untrue. He therefore concluded to remain for some time in this inviting field, and by his earnest and efficient labors gave additional impetus to the work. From New Lisbon he wrote to his son Alexander on April 9th, giving his impressions as follows : '' I perceive that theory and practice in religion, as well as in other things, are matters of distinct consideration. . . . We have spoken and published many things correctly concerning the ancient gospel, its simpHcity and perfect adaptation to the present state of mankind, for the benign and gracious pur- poses of its immediate relief and complete salvation; but I must confess that, in respect of the direct exhibition and ap- plication of it for that blessed purpose, I am at present, for the first time, upon the ground where the thing has appeared to be practically exhibited to the proper purpose. ' Compel them to come in,' saith the Lord, 'that my house may be filled.' " Mr. Scott has made a bold push to accomplish this object, by simply and boldly stating the ancient gospel and insisting upon it ; and then by putting the question generally and par- ticularly to males and females, old and young — Will you come to Christ and be baptized for the remission of your sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit.'' Don't you believe this blessed gospel? Then come away, etc., etc. This elicits a personal conversation ; some confess faith in the testimony — beg time to think ; others consent — give their hands to be 330 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL, baptized as soon as convenient ; others debate the matter friendly ; some go straight to the water, be it day or night ; and, upon the whole, none appear offended." About this time, the Restorationists were making great efforts on the Western Reserve. One of their itinerants was Aylett Raines, a young preacher of much more than ordinary abilities ; in stature, five feet seven inches, with light hair, penetrating eyes and features expressive of intelligence. Having heard many strange reports about Mr. Scott's doctrines and occasional eccentricities, he became filled with an irrepressible desire to hear him ; and learning that he was to preach on a certain night at Samuel Robbins', in Windham, he resolved to attend. Mr. Raines was somewhat fond of controversy, and as he did not believe in water baptism, but in the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost, and had been informed that Mr. Scott was in the habit of calling upon the audience for any objections to his doctrine, he expected to have a discussion with him, as he stated at the time to some of his brethren who accompanied him. Mr. Scott spoke from the first chapter of First Corinthians, and presented the points of the gospel in the order in which he had arranged them. Mr. Raines was so impressed with the correctness of what he heard, and so unable to find any fault with it, that he felt quite confounded, knowing that his friends expected him to reply when Mr. Scott paused for objections. Being unwilling to oppose what seemed to be the truth, he kept his seat, and when called upon to close the meeting, made an excellent prayer, desiring that all might have a spirit of obedience, etc., but taking care to introduce his favorite petition that they might have a Pentecostean season and be baptized with the Holy Ghost and with fire. Next day Mr. Raines went to hear Mr. Scott again, hoping that he would now be POWER OF TRUTH. 221 more successful in detecting errors. The subject of the discourse was the resurrection, and Mr. Scott read the fifteenth chapter of First Corinthians. For this chapter Restorationist preachers had but little use, with the ex- ception of a single sentence in it — "As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive " — and were generally ignorant of its general scope and purport. In the hands, however, of Walter Scott, who was accus- tomed to take the Scriptures connectedly, this chapter soon presented itself to Mr. Raines as a thing of life, and made to him a revelation of such lofty trains of thought and unspeakable glories that his heart was touched, and he found his prejudices and his opposition fast melting away. Two days afterward he heard Mr. Scott deliver a discourse upon the two covenants, when he discovered, for the first time, that he had heretofore been unacquainted with the differences between them, and in making " a chaos of them," as he afterward stated, " had been preaching the darkness that was upon the face of the deep." Soon after this he heard Mr. Scott preach on the subject of faith, and the brilliant and happy manner in which he handled the eleventh chapter of Hebrews and expounded the nature and the power of faith, completely swept away from the mind of Mr. Raines every thought of opposition, and fully convinced him of the truth. He concluded, however, not to be precipitate in making a public profession. Having a preaching tour of several weeks before him, he resolved that he would fill his appointments and preach the truth as he now understood it, openly and candidly, giving to his brethren the opportunity of con- vincing him of any error. Their arguments, however, were so feeble that he became only the more con- vinced that what he had heard, and now read with 18 • 222 MEMOiKS of ALEXANDER CAMPBELL.. enlarged vision in the New Testament, was indeed the gospel of Christ and worthy of all acceptation. At the end of his tour, he called upon another Restoration- ist preacher of high standing, E. Williams, and after a friendly discussion of four days' duration, convinced him also of the truth, and both of them going down to a beautiful little lake in Portage county, and officiating in turn, immediately submitted to immersion for the re- mission of sins. In the course of five weeks from this time, Mr. Raines baptized fifty persons, and among the number there were, including Mr. Williams, no less than three Restorationist preachers. Soon afterward he met with Thomas Campbell, whose intelligence and Christian graces he greatly admired, and as neither of them had any special engagements, they agreed to travel in company. Thomas Campbell took the deepest interest in his young friend, who gave the highest proofs of sin- cerity and ability, while the latter was happy to avail himself of the profound scriptural knowledge and en- larged experience of his venerated companion. While these things were taking place upon the West- ern Reserve, Mr. Campbell was pursuing his editorial and other labors with his accustomed activity. He had in hand a new edition of the Testament, with sundry improvements suggested by scholars from among even the Pasdobaptists, some of whom were much pleased with the work. New editions also of the earlier vol- umes of the "Christian Baptist" were called for and put to press. Meanwhile, his ministerial duties were regularly fulfilled at Bethany and Wellsburg, with oc- casional visits to other points, and he continued to direct and superintend the management of his farm, in which he constantly took a lively interest. Ardently devoted to every species of improvement, he had already brought CHURCH CORRESPONDENCE. 223 from a distance the fine-wooled Merino and Saxony sheep, to which he thought the grasses and climate of West Virginia well adapted. The experiment proving decidedly successful, he soon had a large flock, and by his representations and example greatly contributed to the introduction of that sheep-husbandry which in a few years replaced, to a large extent, wasteful methods of agriculture and promoted in an eminent degree the prosperit}' of the entire region. These attentions to material interests, however, though sufficiently extended to have occupied almost the entire time and thoughts of many a one, were with Mr. Campbell mere relaxa- tions from those earnest religious and reformatory labors to which his life was devoted. During the past year, as a sort of sequel to his essays on the " Ancient Order of Things," he had published some church letters, which, at the time, created much interest. These were occasioned by a circular trom the church at New York, transmitted in 1818, to various independent churches in Great Britain and Ireland, giving a sketch of its own order of public worship, along with its views in brief of Christian duty, and requesting in return a similar statement from each of the churches addressed. This circular, with the letters it elicited from the churches at Glasgow and Edinburgh, in Scotland; Tubermore and Dublin, in Ireland, and Manchester, in England, presented a very clear and interesting view of the relative progress of these differ- ent churches. The general agreement and the Chris- tian spirit which the letters exhibited served to confirm in a very high degree the advantages of the apostolic order, and tended greatly to promote its adoption among the reforming churches in America. They revealed, however, some differences, which were can- 324 MEMOIRS OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. didly and kindly presented for consideration, each church professing its desire, as well as its entire liberty, to conform still more closely to the apostolic pattern. In speaking of the views presented in these letters, Mr. Campbell highly commended the manifest agree- ment in all the essential matters of the primitive faith and practice. As the New York letter, however, re- vealed a disposition to adhere to a fixed routine in the order of worship, based upon a narrow and textuary method of construing the Scriptures, and to insist upon a unity of opinion, he took occasion to express his dis- sent from such rules as being relics of popery. "When men," said he, " make communion in religious worship dependent on uniform'ty of opinion, they make self- love, instead of the love of God, the bond of union, and elevate matters of mere speculation above the one faith, the one Lord and the one immersion." As to a rigid observance of a particular order of worship, after remarking that " the patriarchal age was the infancy, the Jewish age the minority and the Christian age the manhood of the religious world, and that in the latter condition persons are allowed to have a judgment of their own and to exercise it," he deprecates any attempt to prescribe positive rules in matters of mere expe- diency. During this year he published a series of essays upon the "•Ancient Gospel," which, as he said, consisted in the simple facts connected with the work of Christ in the redemption of man. These facts, as he endeavored to shows again appeared in the symbolic ordinances of the gospel. In the Lord's supper, the Lord's day, and especially in the immersion of a believer, the death, burial and resurrection of Christ were pointed out as the grounds of justification and of hope. Baptized
MILLENNIAL HOPES. 225
into the death of Christ, buried with him in baptism, and therein raised again to walk in a new life, the penitent believer thus " put on Christ," and of necessity entered into the enjoyment of his salvation Having thus " put on Christ," it now became his duty and his happiness to " walk in him," and to bring forth in life and conduct the fruits of that Holy Spirit of promise which he received upon the obedience of faith. Thus the gospel was discovered to be of so simple a nature as to be perfectly adapted to the understanding of every creature, and yet so effective in its direct and practical application, through its expressive ordinances, as to secure to the penitent the divine assurance of pardon, the renewing power of the Holy Spirit and the indwell- ing earnest of an eternal inheritance. The wonderful success which everywhere attended the primitive gospel thus presented by its advocates filled them with the most ardent hopes that the per- plexed and erroneous religious systems of the day would be speedily overthrown, and that happy millen- nial period be ushered in when the gospel would tri- umph and Christ's people be united. These fond ex- pectations were especially cherished by Walter Scott and some others of a like excitable and ardent tempera- ment. Mr. Campbell, however, while he shared in them to some extent, was too well aware of the nature of the obstacles in the way to anticipate an easy victory. The restoration of the simple gospel and its institutions to the world was by no means all that was to be accom- plished. As for himself, there was yet another part of the work for which Providence had destined and pecu- liarly fitted him, to which he was now about to be called, and which will be considered in the following chapter.
EMBRACING A VIEW OF THE ORIGIN,
PROGRESS AND PRINCIPLES OF
THE RELIGIOUS REFORMATION WHICH HE ADVOCATED
Originally By ROBERT RICHARDSON
Annotated by NewtonStein
VOLUMES-I & II, 2,000 PAGES
CINCINNATI - STANDARD PUBLISHING COMPANY.
Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1897, by ROBERT RICHARDSON, In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, for the District of West Virginia.