header image
Home arrow Historical Documents arrow Individual Histories arrow My Reasons For Leaving the New School Baptists
My Reasons For Leaving the New School Baptists PDF Print E-mail
Written by Elder J.H. Fisher   

I had joined the Primitive Baptists in Kentucky on the fourth Sunday in January, 1893, and I was living at Turner's Station, three miles east of Campbellsburg. Friday morning I walked the three miles to the meeting. Elder Peter Swain preached the first sermon and then we dismissed for lunch. As we were gathering back into the house, Elder Eubanks approached me and said, "We expect you to speak for us now." I told him that I had tried to do so several times and was in the dark each time, and that I had better not try any more. But he insisted and I began to beg the Lord to show me if it was my duty to ii try to preach. And as I was in great heaviness about it. I asked the Lord to show me what to preach...

This book is not an attack on the Missionary Baptist Denomination; but is intended as an explanation of my conduct in quietly resigning an eight hundred dollar salary, and quitting, not only the ministry among them, but finally seeking membership with another people.

All the Statements in this book are believed to be true, but if I have varied from truth or have made a misstatement, I will be thankful to anyone who will call my attention to it. If I had misrepresented anyone, I will correct the same when my attention is called to the fact.

Experimental evidences are best, and I give my experience and belief, and reasons for them. I have realized a desire to trust in God, who alone can give ability and sufficiency, I was born Oct. 22, 1860. I was about twenty-eight years when I began to preach among the New School Baptists. After that I three years with them--two years in Texas and one in and one in Kentucky. My standing among them had been good, until I joined the Old Baptists, so far as I know; I never had any kind of church trouble in my life with anyone. I was receiving very kind treatment when I resigned the ministry. I was getting $800 Per year. I was pastor of Campbellsburg church, Hopewell, Ten Mile, and Walton, with my residence centrally located at Turner's Station, KY. I was strongly urged by all these churches to continue my pastoral work. I did not try to get anyone to be dissatisfied. At this time I fixed idea of going to the Primitive Baptists. I was in awful as to what I should do. It has been the most awful conflict of my life. I can but weep as I think of others through the same dark thorny wilderness. In this little book I speak kindly of all. I have friends among the Missionary Baptists. I love them because I believe many of them are God's dear children.

This fifth edition would never have appeared, but for encouragement that the little book has met with. I have been encouraged in circulating the book by outsiders, a few of other denominations; brethren and sisters, and also very many Old School Baptist ministers. I feel very thankful for the good reception the little pamphlet has met.

It shows my belief on the great fundamental principles of the way of salvation. I have made no effort to satisfy the eyes of the finished scholar; but I hope it may be of comfort to some. I pray that God's children who are living in Babylon may hear His voice saying: "Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and remembered her iniquities."

May the abundant grace of God help us to seek the kingdom of God, until we find the budding, blooming candlestick of divine presence; yes, even the old fashioned church, standing as it was left by Jesus Christ and His apostles.   JOHN H. FISHER

 

CHAPTER I.

Autobiography

My birthday was put down in the Bible, December 22, 1860. My father's name was William (Bill), and my grandfather's name was Wetzel, and my great-grandfather was Peter. They moved to Texas from Missouri in 1841, my father then being seven years old. Peter Fisher joined the Old School Baptists during slavery. He had lots of negroes. He was not a preacher. I have heard my grandfather preach. Father joined the Baptists When he was seventeen years old. I joined the Missionary Baptists when I was nineteen years old. From my earliest recollection I have had more or less profound meditations about the existence, power and greatness of God. It appears to me that I recall being in my mother's arms as she rode horseback down into the Red River to cross, with fears that there was too much water. One night when my oldest brother began to rejoice in the feeling that God had blessed him in the pardon of his sins, and father asked him if he felt that God had pardoned his sins, he answered "Yes." The thought came to me, "Your brother is a good boy, and he prays, and God has heard him and forgiven him all his sins, but you are so wicked he will never forgive you." Then I began to be very miserable. Years after this I was teaching school at Duck Creek school house, in the north part of Denton county, and felt deeply my sins upon me, and I wandered off and knelt down in the corners of the worm fence and begged for mercy, and upon one occasion I felt that God heard me and had forgiven me my sins. When my school was out I went back to Grayson County, at the old home near Collinsville, Texas. I had heard the Primitive Baptists preach as I grew up, but they had got into the two seed and non-resurrection doctrine, tore up and quit, and there was none to join. See? But I could recall much of what they preached and can do so today.

Mother was a member of the Missionary Baptists, and I went with mother to hear an old-fashioned one preach, and offered myself to them, telling what I have told here. I do not claim that I was smart enough to tell then where certain people were wrong and others were right. My mother may have had more influence over me, than my knowing that the two-seeders were wrong. Years after this I baptized mother into the membership of the Old School Baptists. Years before I was grown I had often asked the Lord to have mercy on me, and I had heard father say that any one that can trust the Savior is a Christian or child of God. This all came to me one day when I was riding on the old gray family horse. Suddenly I thought I heard the words above me, "Trust in the Lord," and I answered, "I trust it ali to thee."

But then I did not consider that I was a person that had a right to be with church people, for it did not occur to me that I was made good. I have often feared that my hope was too slim to be counted. It has seemed to me that in my travels I have found some just as clear evidences of my being a servant of God as I ever received before I joined any kind of church. I commenced preaching for the Missionaries in 1888, and in 1891-2, I attended the Theological Seminary at Louisville, Ky. Here I became disgusted, because they seemed to contradict themselves so often. I found even in 1891, and even earlier, that they received Campbellites on their baptism.

I was ordained at old Sulphur Fork Church, at Campbellsburg, Ky., on the fourth Sunday in June, 1893. But I first joined Mill Creek Church, near Cincinnati in Ohio, on the fourth Sunday in January before this. I came immediately to Texas, after I was ordained. Have been traveling now for thirty-two years and preaching on grace and kindred questions. I was baptized by Elder J. G. Eubanks, now of Welch Tract Church, State Road, Del., and was ordained by Elder J. G. Eubanks, Elder Peter Swain, and some deacons whose names I have lost. I often get into the lowest valley and it seems to be the Lord's pleasure to leave me there for a long time, and again, He lifts me so far above all the trees and mountains, and even the clouds, that I can say, "I know that my redeemeth liveth," and that it shall be well with my soul, so that I do not fear terrors nor devils nor wolves, nor the face of clay in any shape.

I have baptized some twelve or fifteen people that have seen me before in dreams, and some very strange things have been shown me in some of these cases. I have frequently received a passage of Scripture on my mind and carried it until it appeared to me that I must speak on it.

A. B. Medlan and the messengers from our church to an association was camped one Wednesday night and a number of brethren were sitting on a wagon tongue talking on the Scriptures, when suddenly this Scripture was powerfully impressed upon my mind, "The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the Lord," Prov. 16:1. This text of Scripture held right to my mind until I was put up on Sunday to preach, when I quoted it for my text and preached with delight, and right here I was given to see the doctrine of regeneration as I have ever believed it to the opposition of the dear brother who went before me, but we were both friendly to each other about the difference on that difficult subject, and I have always thought that it is right that when we differ a little not to make a great song about it, call hard names and say bitter things to those we differ from. A bitter and ill spirit is as bad or worse than the error we may oppose.

This Scripture came to me in west Texas, once in a very forceful way: "The Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly." Psalms 84:11.

This text seemed to be written in a cloud that hung low in the west. I thought now I must preach on this at my next appointment. But when I arrived at said appointment, the text was not before me so that I could preach from it. So on all the appointments of that trip I could not preach on it. Soon after this I went on a trip to Tennessee. I would often recall this text along but it was not for me to preach on it, somehow. I thought to myself probably it is for me at the first appointment in Tennessee. But some other text came up. I always feel forsaken if I have to pick me out a text, and some times it has been so with me. I went on to Tennessee, and at the first appointment a dear sister came up and told a very humble experience, but I felt sure it was not because I had preached so good, for this special text was still withheld from me for some reason. I went on for several appointments, and finally arrived at Mount Tabor Church and I was introduced to Elder Wiley Sammons, who was the pastor. I looked into his face and I saw intelligence, integrity, honesty and firmness. Joe Sammons, his son, was there also. As I looked into that old elder's face and felt to be empty and in the dark, I said, "Now here you are in the dark and as blind as a bat, and you can't preach today, so you will get up here and make a complete failure, and this good honest man will get up and tell you right before this people to go home and stay there for you are no preacher." I was miserable when all this went over me. So I got Joe Sammons to introduce the meeting, and as I raised up studying what on earth to do, instantly I saw a heavy cloud coming down upon the house, falling on the pulpit, and then lightning playing on the floor in front of the pulpit. Then the Scripture with sweet assurance came back to me, "The Lord God is a sun and shield." The weights which did so easily beset me took wings and I began to fly in the heavens, and it did seem that my speech was seasoned with grace that beautiful and lovely day. As I closed, Elder Wiley summons came to the pulpit and hugged me, and said, "Young man, you are a minister of the Lord Jesus Christ." This was a happy day to me and no big head persecutor could rob me of that light and joy that I received.

I left home once to go to a three days meeting at Hauk school house in Wilbarger County. I was met at the train and went to a brother's house, and while talking to a brother Theus, this Scripture came powerfully into my mind, "Deep calleth unto deep at the noise of thy waterspouts: all thy waves and thy billows are gone over me." Psalms 42:7. This was on Thursday, but the text stayed with me until Sunday at 11 o'clock, then it was before me to preach from, and I had sweet liberty that day. Nearly every time in life when I was being pursued by some special opposition the Lord has showed His hand to me in some way and discomfited my pursuers, for they were sure there that day but instead of rejoicing at the great liberty that was given me to preach, they hung their heads most of the time. Now a constant Pursuer is a wolf beyond doubt, and like king Saul, he proves what he is by his fruit. These men have followed me for some twenty-seven years. Maybe some one wants to say, "Well, these opposers do not follow me but little." Well they followed Paul in close reach and with re-doubled diligence. And so they followed Peter and John, Peter Waldo and John Huss and the Ana-Baptists and William Gadsby and John Warburten and John Leland and John Clark, Joshua Lawrence and many others. Some men's gift runs in a channel that does not arouse opposition as others do. Joshua Lawrence nor any others made their own gift. But when you are opposed because people want you to preach and want to hear you, that opposition is persecution. All our opposition is not exactly persecution, but sometimes it is the case. I know absolutely that I have not been aggressive to oppose those that differed from me, but have generally begged forbearance on difficult things that brethren differ about.

I went to an association in Arkansas once and after I had preached once and had been put on the program to preach again, it was decided to remove my name from the further preaching arrangements, and so my name was left off from preaching for Sunday. This arrangement was done on Saturday morning before the morning services, vices, and the reason given was not that they had ever heard me preach anything wrong, but because I was identified with what was called "Absolute predestination of all things" by affiliation. This was true at that time.

At the 11 o'clock services there was a lady joined, who claimed that she had been praying over her duty and in her prayers in a dream, she had asked the Lord to show her some one to baptize her, who was one of His servants and that Elder Fisher immediately appeared to her. And this was done three times. So she asked to have Brother Fisher baptize her but they objected. They tried to persuade her to have some other one of the ministers baptize her, but she refused and said she might be deceived in it all. The Scripture came to me, "Be still and know that I am God, I will be exalted in the earth."

This brings 'up another matter that I want to relate and thereby give a sketch of the church at Gilham, Arkansas. During the same year that the above took place, I went back to Arkansas at Gilham and held a meeting, organized a church, and baptized the above mentioned sister and several others. Two other preachers were with me, Elder P. H. James, Prescott, Arkansas, and Elder James Daniels. I asked the church to call Elder Daniels to the care of the church, which they did. I went back once a year to be in the annual meeting and generally baptized several at each of these meetings by special request. After this had gone on awhile, I found out that Elder Daniels was telling the members that "Fisher is an Arminian and is not sound. You watch him; he is all the time on works and duty." This Brother Daniels kept telling it around that I was off on the doctrine because he saw I was cautious about predestination and tried to avoid these doubtful expressions. So after he had been at this for a long time, I came there to be in another three days meeting. John McWilliams preached the first sermon on Friday, Daniels followed, :and began to denounce people who held to peace propositions. I had before this published a peace proposition put forth by Elder J. S. Newman. I knew that Daniels meant to denounce me publicly, but I looked up from my seat and said to him, "I endorse a peace proposition if it's the truth, don't you?" This shot was a regular stone out of David's sling. He sat down but the meeting was killed.

Some years after this I went back to Gilham to hold another meeting. A few had followed Daniels off.  A Missionary preacher attended this meeting and he had received a very strange dream before this. He thought he was lost in the woods and in a wretched condition, and could not find the way out. He saw a stranger traveling along and told this stranger that he was lost and also financially bankrupt. "That this stranger told me that if I could show him the landmarks he would show me a pot of gold that was all mine. So I told him I could do that for I had just been looking at the axe marks on the trees. I showed him the landmarks and then turning with the line that this was running on, he started on. I followed him until we came to the railroad, whereupon he began to dig at the end of one of the railroad ties and soon struck something, and reached down and pulled it up. It was a pot of gold which he gave to me, and I felt to be rich."

This New School preacher's name was Compton, if I remember right. He was present at this meeting on Friday. I had never seen him before. I took for my text, "For we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to: his purpose." In the discourse, I said, "My text does not say that all things work together for everyone, but to certain characters--those that love God and are called according to His purpose. All things work for their good in some important sense. And now if you have the landmarks, I can show you a big pot of gold that is all yours. Some of the landmarks are the love of God, as mentioned here and is the fruit or result of the work of the Holy Spirit. Other landmarks are faith in Christ, repentance, prayer, love for the preaching of the gospel. Now, if you have the marks, all the wealth of the universe is yours. All the oil, cattle, gold, and the silver of Peru and everything of value in this big old world is for the child of God. Paul says, 'Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours. Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; and ye are Christ's and Christ is God's," I Cor. 3:21-23. I went on to show how full this big universal pot wad, that included every blessing, both natural and spiritual. Who can figure out all the wealth of this pot? As I concluded, I had no way of knowing that any one was specially affected. I gave opportunity for members and two sisters came forward, if I recollect right, and they were received. We sang and extended the hand of fellowship. While we were doing this, Brother Compton came forward. I told him to stand up and tell his experience. After talking for some time he then told the dream and said, "It had all been preached out to me today." Now it was my time to be thunderstruck. I was astonished beyond measure. I baptized him and the two sisters. Here I was lifted up from my low estate that I had been traveling in and made to thank and praise the God of my mercy. These are things that belong to the strange providences of God. Daniels had denounced me so bitterly there that this Scripture was made sweet to me: "By this I know that thou favorest me, because mine enemy doth not triumph over me," Psalms 41:4. Then I knew that the Lord was in that place, however many of my enemies say it was not so. I will now tell of the very first sermon that I ever preached with ,any light or travel of mind. I had been called on for a few times and spoke in the dark with great bitterness. After this there was an arrangement for a three days meeting at Sulphur Fork Church, Campbellsburg, Ky. The meeting was coming off to cover the fourth Sunday in April. Some time before this meeting I had this dream. That I was standing looking at a most beautiful tree, full of fruit and green leaves. It was a straight body about ten feet high and then the limbs shot out horizontally and got shorter and shorter until it rounded out like a cone. As I was gazing at this tree, this Scripture came with force, "And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper," Psalms 1:3.

I had joined the Primitive Baptists in Kentucky on the fourth Sunday in January, 1893, and I was living at Turner's Station, three miles east of Campbellsburg. Friday morning I walked the three miles to the meeting. Elder Peter Swain preached the first sermon and then we dismissed for lunch. As we were gathering back into the house, Elder Eubanks approached me and said, "We expect you to speak for us now." I told him that I had tried to do so several times and was in the dark each time, and that I had better not try any more. But he insisted and I began to beg the Lord to show me if it was my duty to ii try to preach. And as I was in great heaviness about it.  I asked the Lord to show me what to preach, then suddenly the text came with strong force, "He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water." Then I said, "But I do not know what that tree means," and then as quick as lightning these words came, "It means Jesus." Meantime they were singing and I reached and took the Bible and turned to this Scripture. And as they closed the singing, I arose and quoted that Scripture and began to speak when suddenly all my shackles were taken off, light sprang into my poor soul, all my troubles left me and I seemed to fly off a mountain and soar on the wings of an eagle. My relief was unbounded for me; and I was made to rejoice and my soul did rejoice in God my Savior. This was the first time to know what a travel of mind meant.

Elder Eubanks arose with tears in his eyes and said. "If ever I have seen Jesus in the gospel, I have seen Him today." The Psalmist David said, "I was brought low and He helped me." I know I was very low before I went into that pulpit and felt to be traveling on the mountain when I came out. I felt sure that if I have any knowledge that I heard the word at the mouth of Jehovah, and that what I spoke was from the mouth of the Lord. And I remember that the prophet Ezekiel said, "O thou son of man, thou shalt hear the word at my mouth and warn them from me."

I met Elder S. F. Cayce next day ,and heard him for the first time in life.

CHAPTER II.

The first association that ever I attended among the Old School Baptists was at Smyrna Church in north of McKinney. We were met at a station called Melissa and as the heavy wheels of the large vehicle were running over some rocks this text was given to me, "I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth."

When I was put up to preach that text was before 'me and I preached with sweet liberty for me and the strange people commenced giving me the hand without any invitation or song. I felt sure that night that the gospel was to the living in order to direct him in his Christian duty. And I feel sure now that the faith of God's people is a gift of God, but that the gospel preached as God directs is power to build this spiritual faith into a gospel belief and give assurance to the inquiring child of God. Faith comes from evidence and evidence is produced by a true witness. The Holy Spirit is the great first witness and the gospel minister is a second witness, and that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word is to be established. So then God's people are to be established by this gospel witness. The criminal is not made innocent by the witness. The witness is to tell just exactly what it is that makes the guilty sinner innocent. When Jesus paid all the debts for the poor sinner and the sinner is made sensible of it, it is then he comes into fellowship of the saints, and made to rejoice that a poor hell deserving sinner sees all his sins put away by the blood of Christ. Then he needs to learn that this Christ is to him a great Shepherd, a king, a captain, a redeemer, an high priest, a ruler and a God to save him forever. Thus he eats the gospel meat, bread and butter and oil, milk and water, and joy and all the fruits of the Spirit of God.

I was giving out an announcement once as to where the baptizing would be when one sister who had just joined objected by saying that she wanted to be baptized in the Brazos River, for she had dreamed three times of me baptizing her at a certain place in the river which I did.

I once went to Tennessee and on to Georgia and when I arrived at Atlanta, I requested the cab man to take me to a Brother Green's and I was given a room, which I locked and went to bed. Next morning I awaked before opening my eyes ,and it seemed I could see some one coming to my bed and I first thought it was Brother Green coming to wake me up. But just then I remembered that I had locked the door on the night before and so knew it was not him. But the party came drawing near the bed, yet I still kept my eyes shut but I was sure I could see some one drawing near the bed until the party got up to the very edge of the bed and then the person, or party, looked me over and smiled, and suddenly began to withdraw and rise into the air and went up to near the ceiling and on towards the northwest corner of the house and then disappeared. And I felt that I knew it was the Lord and at once became very happy. My soul was made to rejoice very much. I felt sure that it was a token that the Lord was going to be with me and uphold me. I went on to Echeconnee Association. There was a man who was moderator of the meeting whose name was Childs. I had never been in Georgia before and I had never seen this man Childs before. But he showed an ill feeling for me, and would invite preachers on each side of me into the stand but would not invite me in.

Yet I was from Texas and a long way from home. I do not know for certain why he seemed to have ill will for me. I was told afterward by a brother who was on the preaching committee that he got my name removed twice after I had been appointed to preach. He also went to the finance committee, so I was told, and told them to give me just enough to take me on to the next near appointment and to pay my way from my last one which was about $2.50.

Before I started to this association I had a very singular dream. And I had just gotten up from a severe spell of sickness and was hardly able to go about When I started on this trip. I dreamed that two terrible giraffes came running at me with great vengeance and that I was told to fly which I did, so that I barely escaped that attack from the giraffes. As I flew on I finally lighted down at Collinsville, Texas, near the water ground tank. I was told to take a bucket that was near and draw water for the people which I did. But when I let the bucket down it would not quite reach the water. My brother in the flesh, who was a Methodist, was standing near and still nearer him stood a small oak tree. Then I told him to reach with one hand around the tree and give me his other hand, which he did and this steadied me so I could lean over the edge of the tank without fear of falling over. So I then could fill my bucket and as I drew water up and handed over to the people this Scripture was given to me with great power. "With joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation." I awoke and it was a dream. But this dream followed me to the Echeconnee Association where all this coldness was shown me. When they did put me up to preach I saw this beautiful text. My joy was unbounded and some of the elect of God rejoiced with me, but it looked to me like this man Childs was mad because the Lord God turned the dry land into fountains of water. While I was yet in Georgia, I again met Elder Hezekiah Bussey and he had a strange dream that troubled him. He saw a poor brother in need and distress and was told in the dream to go to his association and hold his hat until it was full and give it to the brother in need. The dream worried him no little, for his business was in such shape that he decided he could not get to the association. But the dream stuck to him so close that he decided it would be wrong not to go to the association.

This was Harmony Association where I met Elder Bussey the second time on this tour. When he met me at the association, he called me aside and asked me what I had received at the Echeconnee Association and I told him $2.50. He told that they gave him $8.00. This worried him. Brother Bussey could not see why the finance committee would give him $8.00 and then Fisher, all the way from Texas, received just $2.50.

On Sunday I was put forward to preach and to be followed by Elder R. H. Barwick. As I concluded and Elder Barwick rose to speak, Elder H. Bussey also rose to his feet and asked Elder Barwick if he would allow him to have five minutes of his time, and Elder Barwick answered, "Certainly." Then Brother Bussey very carefully referred to the way Fisher was treated at the Echeconnee Association and said he had investigated and found that Elder Fisher was a poor man. Now as this matter is often overlooked, let us all come together and make a present to his wife. One man put in five dollars and another five dollars, then others began to put in other amounts and when the five minutes was up, he walked over to me and gave me forty-six dollars, and Elder Barwick went on with his sermon. Here I was made to rejoice because I could see that God had given me wings to fly away from the two giraffes, which were interpreted to be my poverty and affliction which seemed to be improving.

On Sunday night after this I preached at the Missionary Baptist Church in the city nearby on the text, "0 Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings and ye would not," Luke 13:34. It seemed like I saw a terribly thick tangle of brush and trees but it seemed to me the sickle of the gospel was sharp in my hand and I cut my way through right and left and the glow of the God of the skies came down to greet my soul. I know that God does provide in special way at times for his cast down children and his poor servants and makes the mountains to become valleys. And I can say that when I have been persecuted by misguided brethren and been let down in the quicksand of sorrow, that I can truly say that our God has been good to me and has brought me up out of a horrible pit of mire and clay and set my feet upon a rock, and put a new song in my mouth even praises to our God.

CHAPTER III.

When I first met Elder S. F. Cayce of Tennessee, I had just begun to speak in public and he encouraged me to come on a trip to Tennessee. I Was then fixing to leave Kentucky, and did so, moving back to Collinsville, Texas, where I was born and raised. But before I left Kentucky the brethren of old Sulphur Fork Church, near Campbellsburg, Ky., requested me to wait for a meeting. At that church on the fourth Sunday in June 1893, I was ordained and started next day with my family to Texas. Soon after I came back to Texas, I went on a preaching trip to Tennessee. Elder S. F. Cayce arranged the appointments for me. The first was at the church near Milan. This was the first trip among the Old School Baptists and it was all new to me and I worried a great deal as to how to do to conduct myself in an honorable way and yet go along as I would be expected to do. I did not then know of but the one appointment until I got to this New Hope Church, and at the home of Brother Bowles, I saw a copy of THE PRIMITVE BAPTIST, and there I saw my other appointments. I had come all the way from Texas and was tired but they told me there is to be preaching tonight. A large crowd gathered and it was decided that Fisher must preach. Elder Taylor was the pastor. Two or three other preachers were present. After I had concluded, an Elder Thomas was told to give an opportunity for members. All at once a lady began to shout in the back of the house. Her name was Mrs. Alice Fields. She had received a very curious dream. She dreamed that she had gone to church and heard very good preaching and she went up to the preacher and asked him to baptize her which he did. Then she waked up happy and told her husband her dream. She had gone to hear quite a number of preachers but not one of them was the one she saw in her dream. She came on up and told her experience and also told her dream and requested that I baptize her. Elder Taylor asked me, "Brother Fisher, will you baptize my daughter, Alice?" I said. "Yes, if it is your desire and the pleasure of the church."

I was not willing to do so unless under special request and no opposition. I really think it is generally best for the home ministers to do the baptizing. So I baptized her in the Forked Deer River, I think it was. And this Scripture came to me, "Take heed to thyself, and to the doctrine, continue in them, for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself and those that hear thee," I Tim. 4:16.

This was the first person that I ever baptized in the Old School Baptist Church, and it was a very singular case, as it appeared to me, and has helped me to believe that it may be right for me to go and baptize those who seemed to want my little services. Yet some called Baptists have done a great deal to try to make me believe that all my preaching is worthless and that I ought to be required to stop. But having obtained help of the Lord, I continue to this day.

A preacher brought a letter of labor to our church once, charging the church with holding to the nonresurrection doctrine and I preached first that day on the resurrection and enforced my view with a good degree of liberty and when he got up he said: "I would not dot an I nor cross a T on what J. H. Fisher has preached here today and it will stand when this world is on fire. And if this church endorses what has been preached here today, I will take this letter back to my home church and not present it here today." So I called for all who endorsed the sermon to come and give the hand of fellowship to the brother. His name was Elder L. M. Gordon, and has since passed away. One of the sweetest Primitive Baptist characters that I ever met, was Elder George Paine. He was so pleasant and kind and approachable. He believed in doing ,as I have above referred that it is God's appointed means for the saving of His people, that is the preaching in love of the pure word of God.

I went to an association in Indiana once and myself ,and three were appointed to preach on Sunday, On the night before I had a fearful dream. I thought I was in the woods and standing near a fallen tree top. All at once this tree top was full of snakes raising their heads up a little from the leaves and looking at me and running their tongues out at me. Then I looked around me on the ground and there were hundreds of snakes with their heads reaching up some six or eight inches from the ground with their tongues shooting out at me. Just a short distance from me lay a stout frail or club about four or five feet long. I reached forth my hand and took it up. The word came to me, "Arise, kill and slay." I struck that tree top about three times and at each stroke the snake heads flew in every direction. Then I brought it around on the ground like the swing of a cradle, and I could hear the snake necks break off like broken icicles. I awoke and it was a dream. On the next morning the other three preachers, went in the stand, as they lived in that country, and arranged for the three of them to proceed to occupy the time. Neither the pastor of the church nor either of the three invited me to the stand, so I took a seat under the arbor just in front of them. One of them arose to speak. He took his text in the latter part of the eighth chapter of Romans. He declared that his text was God's three challenges to the universe. He spoke about five minutes, when Almighty God stopped him by sending a heavy downpour of rain. Some one shouted out, "Go to the house." In a very few minutes the house was filled with people and three or four times as many yet outside as there were in the house.

The same preacher got up in the house and renewed the three challenges. In just a few minutes the rain stopped. One of the committee came to me out at the arbor and wanted me to go ahead and speak. I told him I could not do so unless I was asked to do so by full authority. Then I would. So he went to Elder Potter in the house and told him that they were about to put me up outside. Then Elder Potter stopped Elder Daily and said, "They want you to go back to the stand." So the whole thing moved back to the stand and the preacher issued his three challenges the third time. By this time all the juice had run out of the three challenges and the preacher had a hard pull to get up the hill. After about an hour and a half he closed, whereupon Elder J. Marshall Thomas took the stand and quoted a powerful text in the prophets, "Behold I lay in Zion, a chief cornerstone," etc. He labored hard for over one hour and the congregation we wandering around and going out to clumps of trees, and in buggies and very few were left on the seats. Then Elder Potter arose to speak, whereupon the preaching committee interfered and said, "We are expecting Elder Fisher from Texas to preach next and he sat down.

Then at last I was invited to the stand, and told to speak I at once went to the stand without waiting to be asked the second time. I have been backward and especially among strangers and I call my God to witness that I have always taken special pains to make distant visitors feel at home. And while I know we cannot expect formalities yet I much rather be left out than go in and up and seek out a high seat lest when the good man of the house comes in he shows me a lower seat. When I went to that stand my snake dream came back to me and I first called the congregation back to the arbor which I did very easily. I then told the dream. Immediately found a lively text and proceeded to talk for about fifteen minutes very fast so as to hold my audience. Then I sat down at once and many voices said: "Go on, go on." But I replied that I knew very well that the congregation Was worn out and the snakes were killed and so no use to try to wear the people out further.

The first trip I ever made to Tennessee I baptized one at the first ,appointment. The first trip I ever made to Illinois I baptized one at the first appointment. The first trip that I ever made to Missouri I baptized two at the first appointment At the first appointment on each of the first three trips I ever made to Tennessee, there was one joined the church at the first appointment.

I dreamed once that as I was walking from the home church house up to the residence, that I found some people camped there and a lady was cooking dinner. I thought she was a woman that I knew but could not tell her name. Directly she spoke to me and said- "Come now dinner is ready and you must eat a good meal for you have a long tiresome journey. I was hungry and went to the table and began to eat. After I had eaten a hearty meal, I arose from that table flying and going to the northwest. I thought I could fly easily for a time until at length I began to tire. I saw a hill ahead of me and decided to rest awhile on that hill, as I saw I would not have to descend much. I did this. Then I arose and flew on. As I flew on to the northwest I saw a great light in the extreme north that looked white and in the center of the white light there was a blue light. This light was to me a very strange affair, but felt sure the Lord would show me what it meant. I flew on and finally I saw the tops of the houses of a town. The tops of the houses were so very high. And as I arrived in the town, I alighted at the top of a double stairway. Then a door opened. There was the same lady that I had eaten with back where I came from. And she spoke to me and said: "Come in, I am here keeping house and these are my children. You make yourself at home with the children. I will have to be at my work" So she withdrew at this. I awoke and it was a dream.

Some time after this I got a letter from Deacon Lee McCan at Silverton, Texas, asking me to come there and hold a three days meeting. I finally agreed to go. He further asked that the old church at Medlan Chapel extend an arm to Silverton so as to give an opportunity for members. When the time arrived for me to go to Silverton, I was so poorly I could hardly go as I had been down with abscess on the bowels ,and had not fully recovered. I took the train and went to Clarendon and by mistake I had to lay over one day and got to drinking the gyp water. It made me so sick that I could hardly travel on the next day. As I went along on the mail hack, my suffering increased until I told the driver that I was bound to get out and lay down for awhile. After I lay there a few minutes he told me that the law required him to keep moving, yet he felt sorry for me. I finally got up and made it to Silverton and went to bed as soon as I got there. When time for me to commence preaching I had fever, but went into the stand and took this for my text, "No man can come to me except my father which sent me draw him." God's light came to me and I preached with joy and travel of mind. and soon my fever was gone and I knew not where. I began to sweat and closed with delight and joy. Next morning there came to my mind the sight of the great white light and the blue light in the center of the white light. Then this Scripture was given to me, "For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, saying, fear not Paul; for thou must be brought before Caesar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee," Acts 26:24. Then came another text with it that Paul used on the same shipwreck, his words to the soldiers that were about to slip out and run away with the little boat. "Except these abide in the ship ye can not be saved." So it was made plain to me that the big white light was the doctrine of the sovereignty God when seen by faith, and that the inner light was the, doctrine of man's accountability. That God in His in. dependent power and authority has made man accountable; that man's accountability rests in God's sovereignty; man is accountable because God made it so.

And with this before us we can preach that God declared the end from the beginning, that there is nothing new under the sun to Almighty God. And that he chose His people in Christ before the world was made and predestinated them to salvation by the regeneration of the Holy Spirit.

And then on the other hand, as Paul did, we are to warn, exhort and admonish the People to watch their step and to tell the believer to turn to God and do works meet for repentance. But this does not mean that God is related to sin like He is to righteousness. God does not urge the sinner on, but so far as He is related to him it is that holding him back, to a certain extent and that of stopping him when it pleases the Lord to do so. In all righteousness our God is the moving cause, but this is not so in wickedness, or else there is no difference between sin and righteousness. But God has full power to stop all sin just when it suits him or else He is not God.

At the above meeting we recognized the arm of the old home church and when I gave opportunity for several came up and I baptized six on the great Staked Plains. I was told that they were the first that had ever been baptized by the Primitive Baptists on the Plains.

This church was the same woman that I had eaten with down at the Chapel in Young County, as it was then an arm of that church. The flying was no doubt to show me that I must be carried by the same power that carried the two wild cows that drawed the ark, and letting down on the mountain forecast my afflictions, and I remember that Paul said, "I take pleasure in necessities and afflictions, for when I am weak then I am strong." "Afflictions though they seem severe are oft in mercy sent."

CHAPTER IV.

Resurrection

Taylor County, Texas, is rather a western county and I was out in that county on a preaching trip once and met up with an old brother, Kirby I believe his name was, J. H. Kirby. He was a very singular man but intelligent. I had seen him somewhere before. I think he came to a place south of Abilene to meet me and take me to his house and the next day on to Hoard's Creek, Church. He had a strange dream a few days before he came after me. He thought he had me stacking wheat for him, if I have not forgotten just how the dream went. He was throwing up the bundles and I was placing them on the stack. After we had worked hard all day and got the stack up high it was not easy for him to get the bundles up to me. But the stack was drawing to a point and finally I said to him, "Now I will cap this stack off with the resurrection." The stack was finished and he awoke and it was a dream. He did not tell me the dream, when he met me nor when I went to his house. Nor until after the sermon on the next day.

On the next day he carried me on to Hoard's Creek. I have now forgotten the exact subject but I remember that as I was drawing near the end of my discourse, that I made this remark, "Now I want to cap my subject off today with the resurrection." After this I went on and spoke on the resurrection and enjoyed the relief of the occasion very much and thanked God. For He had not forsaken me, and enabled me to see his blessed doctrine and declare it to His sheep and lambs. After services that day, I think we went' to Brother Phillip Saunders and then he told me the dream about us stacking wheat together, and how I finished the stack in the dream. Then I began to rejoice, not only that the Lord had given me sweet liberty to preach but had appointed it for the special comfort of this dear old Brother Kirby. I had been in great darkness and this occasion did greatly strengthen me to believe that God, the eternal Jehovah, had set me out to preach His everlasting gospel to the help of His poor people and to show me and help me to stand although men were many who would be glad that I would quit and never have any more appointments. And further I saw that day a sweet evidence that the doctrine of the resurrection of these mortal bodies was surely taught in the Bible.

I will now say a few words on the resurrection. I was raised up in a community where the non-resurrection doctrine was preached. I have heard it argued by the ablest speakers among preachers. Their main line runs this way. That things in nature are figures of spiritual things, but not the very things themselves. That because Solomon used natural stones to build the temple does not prove that the children of God are real stones. But are stones. Invisible. That the natural man is not a child of God (the body), but the invisible soul or spirit that dwells in this body and it is builded into an invisible temple (church) and has no more to do with the body than the rabbit has with the log after it runs out of it. They claim to accept every text of the Bible. And they say they believe in the resurrection which takes place at the death of the body.

These people belong to the ancient Ebonites who confused Judahism and Christianity and then combined it with Zoraastoism. That of two eternal causes that produced darkness and light. They deny that Jesus had a natural or physical body.

But the Bible teaches that Jesus Christ had a physical body born of a physical woman. That if He was not a mortal in the flesh then he lived a life of deception and so did his mother, and instead of being the embodiment of truth he was in that case the embodiment of falsehood. The non-resurrection idea is doomed to go like it came, back to the realms of darkness. Paul says: "If Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, your faith is also vain."

"Yea and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God; that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not."

"For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: and if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins." I Cor. 15:14-17.

Infidelity is plain to be seen in the non-resurrection doctrine. It is one of the most fatal theories that has ever come among the churches of Christ. The Mt. Zion Association got a little of that among us once, but we did not lose a single member in getting rid of it. Neither did a single church set up a bar of fellowship but we held like the Fulton council said, that God has appointed the preaching of the gospel to save His people from error. So in keeping with this Bible view we went forth kindly and set forth what the Bible teaches and soon got rid of it. I think it will be a lesson of caution for us for the future. I think these things should be attended to without ostentation or tumult, and in a spirit of firmness but caution and kindness. Bitterness and abuse is as much wrong as the error in doctrine. We are not bound to see every point alike but plain infidelity is to be opposed and rejected promptly.

Now there is another kind of two-seed doctrine held by some people living near me in Young County, but they believe in the resurrection of the mortal body. Their idea is, that the body is as eternal as God is. They are right on the resurrection of the body, but are wrong in holding it to be eternal. The nature of regeneration is involved in all these arguments and is the most difficult question in theology. If our people don't quit trying to explain all the mysterious parts about regeneration, we are yet to have more division over that very mysterious question. There are some ten different words in the Bible that refers to regeneration to some extent and no two of them have the same meaning. If I say it is a quickening and nothing else, then how can it be a birth ? If I say it is a resurrection and nothing else, then how can it be a creation? If I say it is a grafting and nothing else, then how can it be a quickening? How can it be a washing and at the same time a burning to purify the sons of Levi? And on and on it goes. Who can explain all these words so as to stop all cavil ? Let us stop the cavil even if we can't explain all these words; accept all the good book says without trying to array one part against another. Beware, before we bite off such a mouthful that even a lion could not chew it.

Our minds are so constructed that we are bound to use the things of nature to explain the spiritual work of God. But the thing we use is not always enough like the substance as to remove all difficulty of understanding.

The Bible says: "The trees clapped their hand for joy." Now you can understand this but you could not do so if you were trying to take it literally. It also says that Christ is a rock. Do you believe it ? Well yes, with my way of explaining it. God's children are rocks also. But how can they be rocks and also be trees? Be careful with the figures of the Bible. One time I wrote that the land of Goshen in Egypt was a figure of the church in the gospel. There was a certain brother who was anxious to criticize me, so remarked on this, "That it was strange that God led His people up out of the gospel church." But it was a figure in the sense that it was good pastures. It was a prepared place for God's people. If we abuse a figure, we lose the sweetness. Christ was a lamb but he did not have four legs. The lamb is for an offering and represents innocence. A lamb is not a tree but both ,are used as figures to represent God's children. How easy to abuse a figure. The two-seeders abuse the figure that Eve is a figure of the church. Yes she is, but in what sense? I deny that she was as old as Adam. Even if that part is a figure it won't work out. Adam and Eve are figures in some sense but only figures. Any other good wife is also a figure. A widow might be figure in some sense. Isa. 54:6-7. If a figure was exactly like the substance then there would be only one figure of Christ and one figure of the church.

More History

Elder Samuel Clark was a two-seeder in the flesh and he use to come to my father's house when I was a boy, some fifty-five years ago. He and James Bedford led the party that split off from the Trinity River Association of Texas. There was the Upper and Lower Trinity River after this. It divided about forty years ago. Sam Clark died about thirty years ago and his two-seed mantel fell on his son, Elder D. J. E. Clark, This was a good man and a child of God and no doubt a called minister, but could not get away from the idea of eternal children and eternal devil and his eternal family. Their main argument was that sin was in the devil from all eternity. And that if this is not so then God must be the author of sin. Elder D. J. E. Clark died at his son's in Hale County. This is three generations that I have known on this line. Thus we see how strong is the influence of the parent to take the children with them. You will see this in all denominations but the very fact should be used to .upbuild the church of God in truth and verity. Timothy had the faith that dwelt first in his grandmother Lois, and afterwards in his mother Eunice. Biting and devouring each other generally scatters the children.

Aunt Nancy Fortenberry was grandmother of Elder R. A. Biggs. She was in the organization of Daniel Parker's church called Pilgrim, that was organized in Crawford County, Illinois, and immigrated to Texas and is the oldest Baptist Church in Texas. All the churches of Texas have grown out, mostly from this church and old Union Association, which Daniel Parker organized. There is not a preacher in Texas but what is either directly or indirectly related to the disorder of the twoseeders. The first five associations came right off from Daniel Parker's and all partakers of his work. Now where in Texas could we get some one to baptize us all over again who is totally clear. Echo answers where O where is the man that is clear of all this order in his entirety ?

The old Kehukee Association got their first baptisms from Paul Palmer, who was an Arminian in doctrine. Who will rebaptize all the Kehukee Baptists over so they may come to the order claimed by some of our brethren? The largest association in Oklahoma got its little start from the preachers of Sulphur Fork Association and Sulphur Fork came out of the Union.

Elder R. A. Biggs joined a church in Pilot Grove Association--it came out of the Union and the Sulphur Fork. Was his baptism good enough, coming as it did in succession through the two-seeders? Elder Biggs was a member of the Pilot Grove Association and it corresponded with the old Union, Little Hope and the Sulphur Fork. I am looking at the records now. In 1873, Elder Ben Parker was a correspondent to the Pilot Grove Association. This brought Elder Biggs in direct association with the Parkers. The Old Baptists have at times had the two-seed, extreme predestination non-resurrection, and hollow log doctrines among them and the times above referred to they had all of this among them. Did this hurt them any worse than the seven churches of Asia? W. H. Morgan had a great aunt in Parker's church.

CHAPTER V.

I have been such a weak poor sinner that it might be so that I would have given up hope and turned back long ago if it had not been for the many strange things that have come up to make me feel like the Lord had chosen me to testify in His name and declare His wondrous works. There are so many very strange events in my little ministry that make me sure that God in some way had something to do with it, and that during the days that both sides in the discussion on predestination were giving me fits. I have been bitterly opposed on both sides of this discussion, and all the time I have been preaching more forbearance. But the bitterest abuse of all that has been said has come from the extreme absolute side.

The owner and publisher of the Signs of the Times once published a most bitter personal attack on me because it did not like what I said after the Fort Worth council as I was trying to pour oil on the waters and trying to keep the brethren from breaking so far apart. The Signs called me a double-minded man and one that had perjured myself, yet I had never written a word against the Signs nor on Elder Gilbert Beebe, nor any other advocate of extreme predestination but had all along advised for peace. I have noticed that when one wants to pose as the hero of a faction that they are more likely to go to extremes than they ordinarily will do. We all have this weakness in our flesh. But when it leads us to abuse our brethren in bitter terms then it is we are going out of our way to smite our brethren on the cheek. Why should I fear when I know I have the strange and peculiar providence of God constantly falling on my little ministry? I felt sure then that some day the dear brethren would see that my contention for forbearance would prevail. I am sure today that it is doing so now. While I am not here saying that I have always done right, for I see many things that were not so, yet when old Baptist preachers who have been alienated from me come and acknowledge that they have done wrong toward me and ask me to forgive them, I am bound to do this.

Yet I am fully expecting to go right on working for Peace just as I was trying to do when these various parties on both sides were giving me down the country. Local bars to fellowship set up in the churches are not the best. Here is where I have been all along and here is where I still occupy. Some have gone against some things in our old Confession in one part and others have gone against the old Confession of Faith in other parts. For myself I still accept just exactly what the old Baptist Confession of Faith says on both sides.

I hold to what the Confession says on the decrees of God, with its qualifying clauses, and exactly what it says on the law of God, the accountability of Adam and the entire race, without denying as some do, the full accountability of man. One brother going to one extreme and another pushing an opposite extreme is bound to bring divisions when these two extremes meet.

But to return to my subject of life sketches. Milton Brann's little daughter was named Laura, I believe. When she was about twelve years old she dreamed that a certain man baptized her. They then lived in Tennessee, if my memory serves me right. A few years later they moved to Texas and later on came to our association. When she and her mother got out of the wagon and were looking over the crowd Laura noticed me, a stranger, walking among the crowd and then said to her mother, pointing to me: "There is the man that I dreamed baptized me." She joined the church at that meeting and I baptized her and heard her dream from some of the sisters after we had gone home. This was a strange thing to me but a few things I am sure of. Neither myself nor this dear little girl selected the way, nor the time, nor place for her baptism, and yet both of us were going along begging the Lord of mercies to show us our duty and give 'us to know if He had any work for us in this unfriendly world. And we did feel that God answered our feeble prayers. And we desired to give Him the praise.

"He that hideth hatred with lying lips, and he that uttereth a slander, is a fool," Prov. 10:18.

I had great light and liberty to preach at Gilham, Arkansas. I had been directed there in a strange way by request to baptize a lady who had seen me in a dream, and I did baptize her after some opposition had developed by being called an absoluter. After I had baptized her and had J organized a church, an extreme absoluter of the deepest dye, came there and began a secret opposition to me. This ran on for about a year or more before I knew anything about it. I found out that he was in secret correspondence with some other extreme predestinarians, both of which were attacking me, because they said: "Fisher is an Arminian." Well, while I did not adopt the expression, "Conditional time salvation," yet I boldly contended that if we walk .after the flesh, we are condemned and that God will visit His disobedient children with the rod and bring sore judgments upon us for our refusal to do the things that He has commanded His children to do, and that we are blessed in obedience but that we can do nothing acceptable without the special help and grace of God. I have for years felt that we can easily go to extremes on this difficult matter either way. But this man kept telling that I was an Arminian and I knew where he was getting most of his encouragement, from a kind of headquarters, until finally this text was given to me with great power, "O thou man of God, there is death in the pot. And they could not eat thereof," II Kings 4:40. I preached on it but did not apply my text to any one personally. I maintained that for a man to be a very strong extremist, was bad enough, but then to be determined on top of that, to make his extreme views a bar to others, and the standard that others must come to, or else denounce him as an heretic, this was the limit. I insisted that this non-forbearance was death in the pot that would kill and destroy the peace and union and communion among the churches where such was adopted. That one might be an extremist but if he was ready to

bear and forbear, that such a case was common and should not necessarily bring division. I read a correspondence wherein the writer said: "Why are you trying to make peace? God will make all the peace He wants and whenever He wants it. And if you were to make peace it would be no account for it would be just like man, imperfect and worthless. So you let that job alone and when God wants peace lie will make all the peace He wants." As I had read this I thought of the blessed words of the Lord Jesus Christ who said: "Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children 6f God," Matt. 5:9. It is true that without the help and grace of God we could not have any Bible peace. But is that the proof that we are not to try to make peace? Are the words of Jesus of no value ? Are we not to make peace by His help? I think so. And so I know too that this extreme view is wrong and must go down in the l eyes and in the minds of God's true people that do truly pray for the truth and guidance of the Lord. I know that the Lord's people want peace and that they may also know that if it is not wrought in the grace of God, it is worthless, and that if it is not on the general line of the Scriptures it will sooner of later go down. It is not to be brought by persecution, nor by men who are working after the flesh to accomplish it. If we have men's persons in admiration, if we have the hope of physical profit to make out of it, if it is to gratify some personal spite, it will fail and come to naught. Fleshly ambition generally brings more division and less peace. When one man utters a slander on his fellowman to try to down him, it generally recoils back on his own head. And he may be regarded as a smart man, but the text says he is a fool. It also proves his inbred hatred to his brother. Now I have never met with any stronger, nor much more bitter opposition than that which come to me from this extreme predestinarian. So I wanted my brethren to know from whence the bitterest persecution of my life had come. It came from men who had seen the strange hand of God upon me, and it worried them.

CHAPTER VI.

General Reason

The question; "Why did you leave the Missionary Baptists?'' has often been propounded to me, and I here undertake to answer it for both friend and foe. The Apostle Peter says, "Sanctify. the Lord God in your hearts, and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear." The Bible is the only infallible rule of faith and practice. If we are honest in our convictions,. we shall be compelled to believe and practice whatever we understand it to teach. Some minds are more discriminating, than others. It is difficult to always decide to what extent a church may depart from gospel order and doctrine, and yet retain her identity. Good people differ about this. Even members of the chute of Christ may do so. But when long and continued neglect of certain plain commands become characteristic of a people; and when repeated and numerous innovations are harbored and practiced; and when, after being entreated to quit these unscriptural things, a denomination of people calling themselves followers of Jesus adds on still other new things never before heard of; and when, after all, they pretend to believe certain great central points of doctrine, and yet suffer their preachers to continually fight against these points; then it becomes patent and plain that they are not the visible church and kingdom of Jesus Christ on earth. Such an one may have a great deal of favor of the true woman--the bride, the Lamb's wife--but there is unquestionably a wide difference in their true, vital relationship with Jesus.

I must not attempt in this short work to treat the question as to how long after a temporary separation, such as dissolution of associations, etc., until the several local churches of the erring party would lose their identity as churches; but I am compelled to say that when one party thus goes off holding to an error on some fundamental point, that good order demands that their work be no longer recognized by the scriptural party. When, finally, the question began to oscillate in my mind on this pivot I began to waver. AS soon as my mind was fully seized with the conviction that there were too many gross departures for their work to be authorized by heaven, I decided at once that duty and uprightness demanded me to lay down the armor which I was carrying. It drove me to resign the churches of which I was pastor at once. In short, then I reached a point where I decided that the number and amount of unscriptural things which had crept into the Missionary churches had destroyed their church identity and gospel authority. As a general reason, then, I left them because I was finally enabled to see that their operations were unscriptural. Now, in the next chapter I will try to give some special reasons why they are unscriptural, both in doctrine and practice.

CHAPTER VII

Special Reasons

In this chapter I wish to simply state seventeen reasons why I left the Missionary Baptists. I mention them in advance in order to introduce the reader more fully to the subject matter which fills the main part of this little book. The first five reasons refer to doctrine, and the other twelve to practice. I became dissatisfied with the Missionary Baptists---

1st. By them preaching against the doctrine of predestination and election--Opposing the only plan that could save any of them.

2nd. Denying the doctrine of special atonement-teaching that a part of the race of Adam will yet go to hell, although they say Christ died for them and redeemed them from sin.

3rd. Denying total depravity--teaching that the dead sinner can, ought, and must co-operate with God in order for the reception of eternal life.

4. Human instrumentality in quickening dead sinners-teaching that through preaching dead sinners get eternal life--hence multiplied inventions of man, foreign to the Bible, as means for the conversion of the world.

5th. Repentance and faith as conditions to be performed by ungodly sinners--denying them to be the fruits of a regenerated person, having the Holy Spirit. Thus holding that "a corrupt tree" can "bring forth good fruit."

6th. Affiliations with nearly all kinds of secret institutions of men--societies, clubs, and lodges, in which secret oaths are taken by the person in order to become a member.

7th. New modern societies for religious purposes, supplanting and contradicting the New Testament church institution, such as Y. M.C. A., W. C. T. U., B. Y. P. U., W. M. U., and L. A. S., etc., etc.

8th. Sinful worldly ways of getting money, such fairs, concerts, ice cream suppers, sales, etc., etc.

9th. Unscriptural instrumental music--S4,000 organs, cornets, horns, and even the violin, choirs, duets, and operatic solos, etc., etc.

10. Fine expensive church houses, costing many thousand dollars, decorated, gilded, and flowered at great expense, while they say the heathens are being lost with, out the gospel.

llth. Sunday school, with all kinds of teaching. Th, main point to be taught is Arminianism; human literature, often very heretical, to be studied and taught instead of a plain Bible.

12th. Alien immersion and open communion.

13th. Theological schools--encouraging, as I believe, ambition and unscriptural competition-- degrading the solemn office of the ministry to a profession like law or medicine.

14th. Hireling or salary system.

15th. Missionary conventions, exercising functions of an Episcopal conference.

16th. Missionaries whom the people are called upon to support, holding to pulpit affiliation, using mourners' benches; thus loading their churches with unconverted people.

17th. Last, but not least, of these special reasons is that they teach that thousands of sinners are going to hell that Christ Jesus died to redeem, for the want of money contributed to the cause of missions.

CHAPTER VIII.

Alien Immersion and Open Communion

I now come to the greatest objection I had to these people when I left them. Here is where I received the most hurtful wound. I declare to you, dear reader, that on this subject I was the most completely whipped out and dissatisfied.

I have always regarded baptism as the most important ordinance of the church--not that it is more sacred, but standing as it does, at the entrance into the visible kingdom of Christ, I regard it as very sacred and important. It naturally assumes more importance than any other. It has done so in the pastrathe very name "Baptist" proves it; also the epithet "aha-baptists."

In the introduction of the New Testament dispensation we find that John the Baptist came preaching repentance and baptism. John was authorized by the God of heaven as the first administrator of baptism, and there never has been a legal baptism without a legal administrator. The apostles were rightly authorized persons to baptize, and they were authorized by Jesus Christ; and after the crucifixion He commanded them to go teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. The elders in the churches were to baptize; and the churches were to maintain the ordinances until the coming of Christ again. This is what I believed; and I thought the Missionary Baptists believed it; but I was mistaken.

In keeping with the above views, I could not see how any but members of the church of Christ could baptize --and that, after they had been duly authorized to do so. I could not see how a person excluded from the church could baptize members for the church. To my surprise I found that Missionary Baptists would take baptism administered by persons that were not members of the church. I finally found that they were willing for people to administer baptism for them who were not only outside of the church, but who would really be excluded if were members. To show what I mean--for instance, would take baptism administered by a Cam preacher. Of course they would exclude a man preaching that doctrine among them. I don't mean say that every church would accept this as baptism, b a great number do; and such churches are not non-fell shipped for such practice. I never was willing to for such a church; but I commenced with one once that so practiced. As soon as I found it out I quit. And I saw this thing growing among them, I began to very restless about it.

An unauthorized man has no right to marry people. It would not be legal matrimony. He must have proper lega1 .authority, or else persons having marriage rites solemnized by him are, to all intents and yet unmarried. We need not say that they must remarried for the simple reason that they have never been married. We see that when a couple has been thus deceived, as soon as they find it out, they hasten to thc proper authority and have the ceremony repeated again This, for the first time, brings them into real marriage relation. So it is with the child of God. How awful to think of one taking the privileges of the church before he had' been properly and scripturally baptized. Baptism is the, marriage ceremony that identifies us as the bride, the Lamb's wife. None must administer this beautiful ceremony unless he has been first himself thus united wit] the bride, the church. A man who has not been baptize all could not baptize a Person. No one holds that he could. The church of Jesus Christ is the highest ecclesiastical authority on earth; and I might say, the only ecclesiastical authority on earth. If so, none but those she authorizes can administer the ordinances of the church. All other administrations are invalid. Jesus said to the church. "Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." Rom, xviii. 18. All this being true, I have been compelled to hold that alien immersion is not baptism.

Baptism is not to secure regeneration; it is only a figure of this. It is a shadow, a symbol, a figure--and saves figuratively. Thus it is called a salvation. It is prerequisite to church membership. The church is called the body. Every member must be baptized, as they are joined to this visible body. Every member of the body goes through the same door, or ceremony--baptism. Baptism is in order to obtain church membership. It is the initiation into the body.

Dr. R. C. Burleson, a Missionary Baptist preacher, of Waco University, says:

First. No man can perform an official act unless he is in that office.

Second. Baptism is an official act, is the oath of allegiance; and no one can administer this oath of allegiance except a regular officer of the kingdom, or church of Christ.

Third. Campbellites are not members of the church of Christ; therefore cannot be officers. Hence their baptism is Utterly invalid.

These truths are so self-evident that they require neither argument or illustration; but see the absurdity of the opposite opinion in a few self-evident illustrations. Could Queen Victoria administer the oath of allegiance to a man wishing to become a citizen of the United States Or could Grover Cleveland administer the oath of allegiance to a man wishing to become a citizen of England? Again, suppose, as illustrations, ex-Governor Richard Coke or ex Governor Sul Ross should call an extra session of the legislature, would such a call be valid? Who would hold such an absurdity? * * * It is equally absurd to claim that some good Campbellite brother, who is neither a member nor officer of the church of Christ, can perform a valid official act in the church of Christ.

The above sentiments were my honest convictions during my whole stay with the Missionary Baptists. When I moved to Kentucky I found that, there, it was customary in many places to accept baptism as administered by the followers of Alexander Campbell. I held a meeting with one of the members of the seminary faculty, in which he received a man and his wife on such baptism. I could not endorse it. I preached in the meeting against it. I felt that truth was at stake. But I soon learned that there, and on further north and east, it was customary. Then I began to ask, where is the separate identity and peculiarity that belongs to the church of Jesus ?

Many of these people advocate open communion. Alien immersion and open communion go together. Where one is found, then you generally find the other. It seemed to me that it was a species of liberality that was everywhere forbidden in the Scriptures. If an order can administer baptism, it is the church of Christ. How could I believe that all who immersed were churches of Christ? It takes a great deal more than immersion to make a true church with a candlestick. When the Missionary Baptists take Campbellite baptism, they are no more the orthodox church than are these followers of Alexander Campbell. Campbell was a great man, but I have always held that he left the true church, and therefore had no further right to baptize for it. The Missionary Baptists in California, in the Middle and Eastern States, take his immersions. Also Methodists and Presbyterian immersions are often taken by them. After they unite, they take letters and go all over the United States; so we find them everywhere. Where then is the church of Christ? They are all denominationally joined together. "A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump." Galatians v:9. This is what Paul said concerning the heresy that had crept into the churches of Galatia. Missionary Baptists have been warned and reproved about this; yet they continue to practice it. They seem to mock at the warnings of some of the faithful, and, year after year, repeat the same deed. But "God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap."

We are commanded to take heed to ourselves and to the doctrine. In trying to thus take heed, I became dissatisfied with my connection. I longed for a consistent and sound practice. I found that Missionaries were Willing to take Primitive Baptist baptisms; that they considered them good. I here quote from Dr. Burleson again:

Rufus C. Burleson's answer to Rev. R. P. Collins, Ft. Worth, Texas:

You ask me if I regard baptism administered by Primitive or Hard-shell Baptists valid? This is a question of great and growing importance, and for years I have given it earnest and prayerful study, weighing carefully everything on both sides, and my deliberate conclusion is that baptism administered by Primitive or Hard-shell Baptist preachers in good standing to a converted believer is as valid as if administered by John the Baptist, the Apostle Paul, John A. Broadus or James H. Stribling. My reasons are:

1. A mistake from honest conviction, or prejudice about preaching the gospel to the heathen, does not invalidate baptism. If so the baptism of the 3,000 on the day of Pentecost and the 12,000 during the first revival at Jerusalem would be invalid. For nothing is clearer in the New Testament than that Peter and all the apostles were at first Anti-missionary or Hard-shell Baptists. And the whole Church at Jerusalem was so intensely Anti-missionary or Hard-shell, that as soon as Peter returned from his first foreign missionary tour the church arraigned him for trial

My third reason is that our Primitive or Hard-shell brethren have never rejected any ordinance or doctrine of the Baptist church as founded by Christ and the apostles 1,892 years ago, on the banks of Jordan.

It is a mournful fact that while some of our Hard-shell brethren have become fatalists, scores of our Missionary Baptists are only immersed Methodists in the Baptist church.

I repeat, our Primitive brethren have never rejected any doctrine or ordinance of Christ; but with wonderful tenacity they cling, as we do, to all the doctrines and ordinances as they came from heaven, pure, simple, holy, sublime.

Let us invite them to meet us in a great Christian convention, and let us Seek a living union with the 150,000 Anti-missionary Baptists in the United States, to raise $1,000,000 for missions and sending into foreign fields 1,000 missionaries--Baptist and Reflector, April 28, 1892.

Northern Baptists not only admit that Pedobaptist societies are Scriptural churches, but that they have a valid and true ministry, and therefore freely exchange pulpits with them, and of late invite them to take part in the ordination of ministers. Pulpit exchange is so general that no one knows for a certainty who he is going to hear when he goes either to a Baptist or Pedobaptist house.--Tennessee Baptist, March 20, 1858.

We do not think this is the case with all the so-called Antimission churches. With some of them We would not hesitate to commune, nor would we even fail to recognize their ministry. We do not think their position, when properly understood, is such as to destroy their claim to be true churches of the Lord Jesus.--Tennessee Baptist, May 22, 1858.

I found them ready to take Primitive baptism, while the old order of Baptist positively refused to recognize either them or any other order. They regarded them all as new and unwarranted by the Bible. They refused to divide the honor of the wife. the bride, with any others. If they were sound and scriptural they could not think ethers were so, for they were very different. I struggled with this question about one year; and then I quietly retired from the ministry.

CHAPTER IX.

Theological Schools and the Hireling System

I have all my life and do now believe in education. It is a good worldly blessing that we all need. Even as a preacher, I would rather have an education than to be without. But this divine education to be given to the unregenerate is certainly unscriptural. Religion cannot be imparted like we impart mathematics; or like a child learns the alphabet. Before they can learn either doctrine or duty they must be quickened into divine life. From then on I am an advocate of Scriptural teaching, which is to develop to very wholesome ends. God especially appoints the teachers, and Jesus Christ constituted the school while here on earth.

The main objection which I had to the theological school was that the teachers were, more or less, in sympathy with what I have shown to be unscriptural in the foregoing pages. Here at this large school which I attended at Louisville, Ky., where they have about four hundred and fifty students, they propose to teach men how to preach. They pretend to believe in a call to the ministry: yet that this is a place to prepare for successful and effective work. They say that while they are not making axes, yet they are sharpening axes? Did you ever hear of a sharp ax sharpening a dull one? They say it can be done--if you let the educated preacher (sharp ax) teach the uneducated preacher (dull ax) until he also becomes proficient (a sharp ax). They say they do not claim to just exactly have the truth, but they are nearer to it than others. What good would it do to build near, and not on the rock foundation? When the rain and storm comes, what good will 'it do to be nearer the house than others? We must be in the house and on the rock:

The seminary has a fine library; a faculty of fine]y: educated and refined teachers. They teach much literal truth about the Bible and history; but it seems very clear to me that it is the work of the carnal mind and natural reason. Quite a number of their text books were written by Pedobaptists, and other enemies of the Baptists. One of the teachers was a Presbyterian, and another an Episcopalian. I understand that the faculty accept alien immersion in their churches--some of them at least. The mission subject receives the greatest attention. Honorary titles are conferred on person who graduate.

Before I go on I want to say that in my connection with these people I have been conscientious all the time. I don't mean to say that I agreed or disagreed entirely with them, but while I found some things which I could not accept, yet as I was not prohibited from preaching predestination, special atonement, particular election, effectual calling, final perseverance of the saints, etc., I would from time to time make up my mind to try to stay with the New School Baptists. I did try, but failed.

However, the great seminary was upon me, and I had promised to attend one session. The faculty was very kind to me, and some of them showed me some special favors. I was asked to take one study, which, when 1 came to see what it meant, I very much objected to, and soon quit hearing the lectures--and that was what was called "Homiletics," or the preparation and delivery of sermons. It proposed to tell or instruct one as to how to prepare and get up effective sermons, and to deliver them so as to move and affect the audience. I came to believe it was sinful, and refused to have anything more to do with it.

I heard Dr. Broadus, the President of the school, lecture on prayer. He said in substance that .we not only ought to study our prayers beforehand, but we ought to think over and find out the right things and enterprises for which to offer prayer--such as the missionaries in foreign lands, the young converts, the unconverted ones, and the government of the land, etc. This idea of studying up a prayer rather worried me, and increased my doubt about the whole concern being of the Lord; but you see I was tied; and again, I desired to go to the bottom of it.

I will not here take time to explain fully my objection to their theory of the "inspiration" of the Scriptures, but it doesn't seem to me that they hold it as direct and immediate.. mediate. They seem to think that Paul's education and knowledge of men and history gave him superior qualifications for writing certain letters. I objected to this view and said that Peter, under the power of the Holy Spirit, could have written the same letters if it had been the mind of the Spirit for him thus to write. God could reveal it to and cause a ten-year-old boy to write it if had been His good pleasure. I propose to give the honor to God's grace rather than to Paul's education; for Paul said: "By the grace of God I am what I am."

But if any one thing convinced me that the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary at Louisville, KY. was primarily of man, and not of God at all, it was the statements advanced by Prof. W. H. Whitsitt, D. D., L. L. D., in his lectures on "History of the Baptists." I have his lectures in print. They were taken by a lady who was a shorthand writer and printed on a typewriter for the students at 12 1/2 cents per lecture. I bought fifty-seven lectures on "The American Baptists." I did this because I could not hear the lectures (but few at least), and because I wanted to be sure not to misrepresent him; and therefore wanted it in black and white. I could not conscientiously join this class after having learned his views; and then, besides, I was away, trying to preach to about four churches, so that I did not have time. Sometimes I would go in and hear one or two lectures. Personally, Prof. Whitsitt is a clever gentleman--mild, quiet and considerate; will listen patiently to almost any question; rarely speaks harshly of anyone. This is admitted, but it does not obligate anyone to accept false doctrine, though advocated by one superior in good qualities to the one described above. He commences with Roger Williams as the oldest and first Baptist in America. But he says that "While Roger Williams' church was a Baptist church, yet it was a sprinkling Baptist church at first"--that it first practiced sprinkling. He teaches that we descended from a people who once held to sprinkling. He holds this true (by his lectures) of the Anabaptists. He says, though Ezekiel Holliman baptized Williams and Williams in turn did wise to him, yet it was all done by sprinkling! Did ever hear the like? He takes the position that Baptists were Armenians until the time of Whitfield, from whom they absorbed their Calvinism. He says if Baptists have a succession, he knows nothing about it--he can’t find it. He objects to the views held by D. B. Ray, J. R. Graves and Orchard. He repudiates the idea of succession as held by many prominent Missionary Baptists. He says that any and each of the denominations would join Church and State and persecute the others if they had the power--his own denomination not excepted. If the Baptists make changes--which they often have done --he says he expects to be found following along after them wherever they go. He says that the Old School or "Hard-shell" split was not caused by missions, but by predestination, and missions gave an occasion for that cause to do its work. Education and superior numbers indicate to him that they are the right people.

As to other seminaries, the doctrine that part of the Scriptures is not inspired is most clearly held. The Presbyterians withdrew from Dr. Briggs because he denied the plenary inspiration of the Scriptures; but the New School Baptists have never yet manifested even that much faithfulness. The faculty of the Louisville Seminary claim to believe that all the Bible is inspired; but if they know what inspiration is--judging by their definition--then I am sure I know nothing about it. The school has a great crowd of hunters--I mean hunters for a position (salary). They very often fall out about who shall get the best position.

While there are so many things about it all to regret and deplore, even some things that I do not consider prudent to mention here, yet some go there who manifest a meek and }rumble heart. Against such, I Could never speak an unkind word; but would rather pray for them, and plead With them to come away from so unscriptural a thing. My roommate (Mr. S. P. Clement) was a kind, tender-hearted, clever gentleman, and I have reasons to believe him to be a child of God. May the dear Lord bless him, and all His meek and humble ones who are living in error.

As to the salary system, I have only a few words to say. For the most part, I received a very good Salary; but I never did set a price, which I demanded, in consideration, to be paid or agreed upon before I would preach. I believe that the system encourages improper motives. It degenerates the ministry to a profession and creates, I fear, a great deal of covetousness. Paul had no salary promised him. Peter had none. They were willing to suffer afflictions with(h the people of God rather than enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season. Jesus says: "So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple." May the Lord teach us what self-denial means, and help us to follow Jesus.

I have been asked if the Missionary Baptist denomination donated the funds to pay my expenses at the seminary. I desire to say, no. The churches of which I was pastor paid me a salary, and I spent it all for that and other things. But I will make this explanation--that I did board about one-third of the session in the New York Hall; but the churches of which I was pastor did make up and give more than that amount to the students' aid fund so that practically I paid my own way entirely, laboring among their churches. While I never charged, yet they were pleased to pay me tolerably well. Yet, with all they paid me, I was a poorer man when I quit them than when I began my ministry among them. I lay no blame on them for my poverty. But if they had supported be entirely while doing nothing but going to school, even then no fair-minded person would conclude that they had a right to say what I should always believe --and thus have my conscience sold. If any man ever charges me with doing wrong in this line, I venture the remark that it will not be one who ever gave me anything. It is not considered among them as giving when they pay the preacher's salary. It is paying their debts for faithful labor. I don't mean to say that I never received a special small gift; but, on the contrary, I received many--both money and its equivalent. But they were generally where I had done a great deal of free labor; but not always so. I have elsewhere said, and do now say, that I feel very thankful for all such kindness.

One more thing; I desire to explain that I never received any education from this people. I taught school seven years before I began to preach for them. The seminary is a school that proposes to teach men to Preach; and as that is the only school of theirs that I ever attended, I received no literary training from them. No church, or board, or society, sent me there; but I went in search of truth! and after I had been there a while I became fully convinced that this school was more of the Pride of man than of the Lord.

CHAPTER X.

Conventions and Boards-Missionaries Whom the People Are Called on to Support, Teaching Unscriptural and Unbaptistic Doctrine

At the Southern Baptist Convention I once saw a collection taken--the first one of the kind in my life. It was a collection for the Theological Seminary. A great many jokes and anecdotes were used--some of them were ridiculous. They commenced at $5,000 and came down holding at given points---coming down just tike an auctioneer who sets a high price and falls until he gets what he wants. When they came down to $100 they rallied about one hour. Finally a little butterfly slip of paper came curling down from the third floor. The speaker caught it and read aloud: "A lady who belongs to the Presbyterian church says that she will give $100 if nine Baptist sisters will give one hundred apiece." Here the speaker made a strong appeal for nine ladies to give $100 each. He soon got the $900 more. Just then, from above, came another butterfly paper, and the speaker again read aloud- "A lady who is a member of the Methodist church will give $100 if nine more Baptist sisters will give one hundred apiece." Again the speaker rallied the audience, and clung to them until the other $900 was promised. Just then a note was handed up from the ground floor, and read thus: "A lady who is an Episcopalian will give $100 if nine more Baptist sisters will give $100 apiece." Again the speaker summoned all his powers of appeal and enthusiasm until the $900 more was brought in. It looked tricky. I asked myself if Christ, or Paul, or John, or Peter, at Pentecost, or elsewhere, ever did the like? Who commanded them to do that? Is it of God, or is it of men? I was told that there was a great number of young men called of God to preach, who had applied to the board, but could not be appointed and employed, because there was not enough money in the. hands of the beard to employ them.

I thought how strange that the Holy Spirit should call a man to a work, and lay the burden of it upon him, when at the same time he knew it was not possible for him to do it! How vain the work of God would be if it was so! It worried me, and caused me to doubt the whole machinery. How has a missionary board the right to dictate to one of God's called ministers as to where he shall go?

Here I desire to give some quotations from leading missionary Baptists as to the Scriptural authority of this modern machinery:

Let it be borne in mind then that our missionary organism is of human origin, and of a very recent date--entirely outside and independent of the churches, and not known in the primitive age of the church.--J. R, Graves, in Tennessee Baptist, September 8, 1860.

H. Harvey, D. D., pages 53 and 54. Evidently the missionary enterprise in the apostolic period Was not left to fortuitous organizations formed by individuals. · , . Paul was sent forth, not by a society, but the church at Antioch, and so far as his hands did not support him he was sustained by many different churches He says: "I preached to you the gospel of God freely."

Mr. H. Harvey, D. D., page 62: When Christ ascended he left the command, "Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature," but apart from the local church and its simple agencies, he instituted no general organizations through which this command should be fulfilled.

If the friends of the Convention (Southern Baptist Convention)as at present organized, endorse these concessions, then the discussion, so far as it is scripturally concerned, is at an end, for says Brother D.- "It is a human institution.,, A scriptural institution is not human but divine. The S. B. C., is a human institution, therefore is not scriptural--Tennessee Baptist, June 2, 1860.

One cause of this terrible cannonading is my having said that our mission machinery is unknown to the gospel. * * * In this construction We borrowed something from the world and something from the Pedobaptists; and in borrowing we departed from the spirit of the gospel, and from Baptist simplicity.--N. M. Crawford's reply to his Brother Walker, in Tennessee Baptist, May 14, 1859.

Benedict, page 935: It has been my settled opinion for a long time past, that the cause of missions has had but little to do in this business * * * New men and new measures have run faster than the old travelers were accustomed to go, and they have beer disturbed at being left behind.

On same page he says: But doctrinal matters have been at the bottom of all the troubles; and predestination has been the bone of contention.

Mr. Murdock, Secretary of the Missionary Baptist Union, says on page 21: It is also worthy of note there is no illusion, either in Luke's history or in the apostolic epistles, to the establishment of a single Christian school, not even among the densely ignorant and degraded people of Lycaonia, where Barnabas and Paul established churches.

The heathens are dying at the rate of 100,000 a day, and sinking down to hell, because of the neglect of the church to do her duty. Christians are going to save them at the rate of one-tenth of a cent per day.--Throgmorton-Potter Debate, pages 218 and 219.

Article 10. Moreover we have ever regarded all the inventions of men in the affairs of religion as an unspeakable abomination before God.

Article 11. We hold in abhorrence all human inventions as proceeding from anti-Christ, which produces distress, and are prejudicial to the liberty of the mind.--Articles of Faith of Waldenses

The Waldenses said that "the word of God shall be freely preached by able ministers, according to the Holy Scriptures without any human invention.--Jones, page 410. The progress of Christianity is not to be attributed to human means, but to divine power.--Moseiem, page 42, Same book, page 296: They declare the use of instrumental music in the churches, and other religious assemblies, as superstitious and unlawful.

Since Christmas Brother Holt employed Brother J. N. Warren to preach as Missionary pastor at Pleasant Retreat church, of Cherokee Association, at a salary of $8 per month. He commenced there with thirteen members. Two weeks ago he held a meeting of eight days, which resulted in twenty accessions, twenty-five by baptism, giving them forty, which makes them self-sustaining. These forty children of God have cost us in cash just $4 apiece. Who, in the face of all this, is not willing to give $4 to save a soul from eternal damnation? Certainly, no one. Oh! brethren, just think, only four dollars for a ticket from earth to heaven.--A. A. Carpenter, in Texas Baptist and Herald, August 17, 1878.

In this last statement we have an expression that brings out what a great number of these people believe; and as the President of the Northern Missionary Union, upon taking his seat, said: "Our success has been in proportion to the amount of money expended. So much money, so many souls saved."

I am glad that it is not the truth. I could say more on this subject, but my space will not allow. A few words, now, about the men whom they send out, as a rule.

What do they preach? Most of them preach against the doctrine that has been set forth in this book. How can they, then, be Bible Missionaries? I cannot tell)l what foreign missionaries do, only by what home missionaries do. If they do these things in the green tree, what shall be done in the dry? If they preach Arminianism here, and fight election and predestination, contend for salvation by the obedience of the sinner, etc., what will they do when they get off out of sight, where no one will object ? They invite them up to a mourners' bench, where they expect to work on them until they get through. Instead of preaching Christ to the sinner, they try to preach the sinner to Christ. Instead of preaching good news, they preach bondage, legalism and condemnation. Instead of telling what Jesus has done, they throw all the emphasis on what the sinner must do. Instead of emphasizing what has been done, they tell the sinner what is yet to be done. Instead of preaching grace, they preach the law. The Lord says, Isaiah xl:2: "Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished''--not will be if she will work--"that her iniquity is pardoned :"--not will be when she accepts--"for she hath received of the Lord's hand double for all her sins" --not going to receive double, but hath already received it. The command was "Go and preach the gospel." The Missionary Baptists, it seems to me, do neither; but they send and preach law. Yet the church was commanded to go and preach the gospel--good news. And when this good news is sounded, the "old Book" says: "Blessed are they that know the joyful sound." Those touched by divine power, alone, can know it.

CHAPTER XI.

Thousands of Sinners Said to Be Going to Torment For Want of Missionary Money, Who Were Redeemed By the Blood of Christ

Here was a strong objection which I held to this denomination of people. But in my first connection with them, I never heard any such doctrine preached. But the Southern Baptist Convention appointed a Dr. Green, of St. Louis, to write a paper to be read before the convention. The subject assigned him was: "The heathen lost without the gospel." They adopted it. Suppose they really believed that, through and through, what does that say? All the people must sink down into irretrievable woe, where the gospel is not preached, that is not all--only about one-third of them is saved where the gospel is preached for only about that number accept it. If that was so, heaven would be almost empty. They either don't believe it, or else they believe that infants are lost. Infants cannot accept the gospel. I believe all the infants at the flood were saved; that all the babes which were in Sodom and Gomorrah are in glory. I believe that the infants of negroes, cannibals, barbarians, savages, Pagans, Buddhists, Mohammedans; all races, Mongolian, Malay, Ethiopian, African and Caucasian; all infants born or unborn, whether born in legal matrimony or otherwise; of the billions and billions of infants--all, all, are saved by the grace and Spirit of Omnipotence, without a single utterance of literal preaching being understood by them. I believe they were redeemed by Jesus Christ, and will sing, with all the rest of heaven: "Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof; for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue and people, and nation."--Revelation v:9. The same thing can be said of every other unaccountable being among them-the idiot, the insane--and all that were foreknown in the electing covenant of grace. "For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren." Romans viii:29. So it is not a few, but many, that shall be saved--not just a few where the gospel is preached and accepted. God has but one way of giving faith; and none can be saved without it? What preacher gave the testimony to Abel ? I ask, who preached to him? By the same faith that Abel was saved the world was framed, by the Word of God. See Hebrews xi:3. Abel and infants are saved the same way. The heathen are lost without Christ, but not lost because they never heard or saw a human preacher. This theory is too short for one to stretch himself upon; and the salvation therein is too narrow to cover one. How can it be true? It limits salvation to the extent of the amount of silver and gold expended in that direction. 1st Peter i:18-19: "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot." How can one man's salvation depend upon the faithfulness of another man? Are you to go to torment because someone was stingy and would not send the gospel to you? How can a person earnestly believe that, and at the same time have a large bank deposit? How could he sleep with money at his finger ends, and yet all the time believe that poor ignorant heathen are being lost by the thousands that could have been saved if he had only given the money, which he cannot take with him out of this world? I have held for years that there is a vein of insincerity somewhere with those who hold that the heathen are lost without the gospel. I will never be satisfied that they believe it until they give up houses, land, money, and all they have, in order to send preachers to preach to the poor heathen. And we are told every year that there are preachers desiring to go, but cannot do so because of the lack of the means. Yet many people who hold to this idea are rich in this world's goods. At the final coming of Christ what will their houses, jewelry, stores, lands, gold and silver, amount to--while they have refused to give it to missions? Yet you tell me that they are to be saved, and the poor ignorant heathen to be damned? My credulity staggers, and I cannot believe it.

Along these lines there appeared to me to be too much affectation and presumption--a pretended devotion that would not prove itself. I could not enter into it. Every day I was unconsciously losing confidence in the sincerity of their devotion to the heathen. Sometimes I feared that I might be in the wrong, and that really they had more abiding interest in the great work of preaching Christ than I thought. Yet fine gay clothing, sumptuous living, costly and expensive houses of worship, $5,000 organs, and the great competitive strife for salary and position, banished all that from me, and made up my mind for me that the Lord was not in their work Yet I surged and struggled with the thought. My heart pulsated and throbbed with emotion. Tears and groanings marked me out day and night. Poverty threatened me. Yet in the Lord I found a hiding place from the storm.

CHAPTER XII.

My Last Year's Conflict--General Remarks and Conclusion

My last year with this people was more eventful than all my time before. The first two years of the ministry was in Texas, with men who believed and practiced such things as were more nearly in harmony with my own convictions. I was told that all the "kinks and knots" in my views would be straightened out at the seminary, if I would only consent to attend one session. I finally agreed to do so. But in my travel and preaching in Kentucky, just previous to the opening of the school, I found something that worried me no little. It was the meeting heretofore referred to, in which one of the professors of the seminary took two members into his church on Campbellite baptism. I was preaching with him at the time it was done, and I seriously objected to it. But I soon found that the further north and east I went the more they held to open communion and alien immersion. Instead of becoming satisfied, I became more dissatisfied. When I stepped off the train at Campbellsburg, Ky., I was told that there was a Primitive Baptist church there, 5r as they said, a "Hard-shell" church. When this was told me, a thrill of the strangest kind ran through my body that greatly astonished me, but I went on and said nothing about it. I thought that there were many things wrong among them. I decided that I must work with others for the general reform. Some agreed with me about the need of it; but all seemed to wait for others to make the start. One day I stood on the bank of the Ohio river thinking about the need of reform, and how little I was succeeding. All at once the thought came to me, what if I was down in that river trying to turn all that water up stream? I could not; it would drown me. So it seemed to me then that I would be that foolish if I should try to reform them. How could I turn them. with their four million members, running rapidly down the hill of modern improvement? See the mighty monster of patented machinery--such as boards, conventions, societies of every kind and order, destructive to the old, simple, gospel church; universities and colleges, teaching that the Bible is not all inspired; fairs and suppers to get money for the Lord, each trying to outstrip the other in display, number and notoriety; all marching with the current--and me trying to reform them! The great wheel would crush me!

I have thought often of an incident that I once heard. Two competing steamboats once made a wager for a purse of so much money that the one could outstrip the other in a race, The amount of money being staked, the day arrived for the test as to which was the fastest steamer. The moment arrives, and they both start at once at a rapidly increasing speed. All was interest and excitement, and many thousands at both ends of the race are watching for the result. See them, as the great waves bow and boil and roll. And on the one that is gaining a little we hear the voice of the engineer calling in breathless excitement to the captain, saying: "We forgot to take any wood! What must we do?" The captain studies a moment and then answers: "It will not do to lose this race; we must win at any cost. So take the furniture, chairs, tables, tear down the doors, rip off the ceiling, and throw it into the furnace, for we must have steam, and we must win this race. Spare nothing that can be gotten; we must not get behind." So, it seemed to me, that the Missionary Baptists were doings---they had dared the Methodists, 'and said they could beat them in the race for numbers and a big name. But in starting off from the old order of Baptists to do this, they failed to take any wood (candlestick to give light). So, now, we make up for it; they begin to tear the very leaves of the dear old Bible, on which all of God's children stand, as the only rule of faith and practice; and so they now say that part of our precious volume is uninspired. They overrule and tear out the simple, restrictive commandments of Jesus and consume them by teaching the commandments of men. They refuse to wash feet; refuse to preach election. In the northern and eastern seminaries their teachers hold that part of the Bible is unauthorized and uninspired. This is also held in the great Baptist University at Chicago--tearing up the very foundation on which they were supposed to stand-gloating and glorying in their departures. And why all this? Just to beat in the race--to keep from getting behind. They said the Old Baptists were one hundred years behind. But one thing I found, at last, they were not tearing up the old ship yet. They were still satisfied to travel at the same speed that our fathers did. They wanted no new thing.

One, day I visited a meeting at the Primitive Baptist order at Turner's Station, Ky., and they sang this song:

I am a stranger here below,
And what I am 'tis hard to know;
I am so vile, so prone to sin,
I fear that I'm not born again.

I broke down in weeping and tears. This was my poor experience. Their forms were so simple and sublime! I felt that I was not worthy of such company. But still I struggled with my surroundings. I thought how abominable is a turn-coat! Surely I must be all right, if I will only preach the truth. I determined to do this more clearly. But something within bothered me, and said: "All is not well." When near the close of the school my dissatisfaction grew worse. One day I was walking through a cornfield, and my mind was instantly seized with the conviction that I was doing wrong to continue my preaching among them. I fell down in the plowed dirt, and plead with God as I never had before to let me die, or show me what would be right for me to do. I immediately got relief and arose with the impression to go and resign all my charges. Sweet texts of Scripture came to my mind, such as this' "So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple." "He that findeth his life shall lose it, and he that loseth his life for my sake shah find it."

I wrote a card at once to Campbellsburg, Ky., telling them that I would be at their next meeting and resign the care of the church. I went on and resigned them all. I was in great poverty, and with a large family of young children. It troubled me very much about what I should do. But when I came home and quit the churches, I found a letter offering me a school. As I considered it providential, I at once accepted it. This ended my career among them as a preacher.

I now want to say that I did not see all the doctrine as plainly and clearly then as I hope I do now; but there has been very little change. The foregoing pages show about what I then held on doctrine. And I now hold it the same way. I think the strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not please ourselves. But now I wish to insert the last letter of a series which I wrote many years ago to the "Primitive Baptist."

"I never really knew what was the true genius and principles of the Missionary Baptists until I had been a year in Kentucky. Now I had come to see that the main things which I had set my heart firmly against were the very things which these New School people seemed determined to hold to and practice. The simple forms and practices of our forefathers were too stale and antiquated for them, and the continual clamor was for progress. How can anyone improve on the forms of church work laid down and practiced by Christ and his apostles ? Where are the people so bold as to propose the 'improvement?' I searched diligently, and I found each and all denominations in this progressive work but the Old School Baptists. And as to my baptism, I saw clearly that all denominations would take one another's immersions but the Primitive Baptists. All the evidences to me now were to the effect that they were the true church, but I decided not to be hasty. I took up a school and taught during the winter of 1892, and gave myself to all the investigation and prayerful meditation that I possibly could. I became convinced that God would guide me. While convinced that these were the true people of the Lord, yet I told my wife that I would never join them until I could feel the presence and power of the Lord's Spirit saying, 'This is the way; walk ye in it." Several incidents occurred to convince me that God was Very powerful in the matter. When I would get impatient and hasty, there is one text of Scripture that came to me several times in a strange way. Sometimes when in bed I would awake and be grieving or weeping over my awful condition, and questioning why God had left me with such a dark and rugged road to travel; then that same text would come as plain as a clear still voice, and I would be made to stop and listen if someone was speaking, while these words went sounding through my mind: 'Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the heathen; I will be exalted in the earth.' What can this mean? Can God exalt himself in taking me from the New School to the Old School Baptists ? Am I to be still and wait for Him to do it? Surely that is what it means. I believe that God has taught me that his time is better than my time in all things. I was finally made not only to be willing to go to the Old School Baptists, but to anxiously seek the kingdom of God among them.

"Accordingly I was received into the fellowship of the Mill Creek church in Ohio, after I had tried to tell my experience and some of my wanderings, and was baptized by Elder John G. Eubanks, January 29, on Sunday, breaking the ice about sixteen inches thick, and the ground covered with snow. I could no more keep myself from believing that it was right for me to do so, than that it is right for me to love my mother, or my wife, or my baby. Yet many honest friends, no doubt, think that it was the mistake of my life--that now I had lost my only opportunity to do a grand work in the world. Even some honest friends considered that I had no correct idea of what was philanthropic or noble, and that I had thrown myself away. Others mocked and ridiculed me as a crank. I have had a continual flow of peace so far as that matter is concerned, and I have felt that now it is settled forever. I have had a satisfaction in it that I never have known before.

"Why did I leave? Because my convictions in the light of God's Holy Spirit and revealed word forced me to--not by physical force, but a power greater, which takes hold of the mind, heart and soul; like that which caused a starving man to follow the bell-call to come to a sumptuous dinner. I desired to go where the hungry sheep were fed, and where they believed in feeding the sheep. My soul was made to inquire as one of old: "Tell me, 0 thou whom my soul lovest, where thou feedest, where thou makest thy flock to rest at noon; for why should I be as one that turneth aside by the flocks of thy companions?'

"Why did I leave them? Because I saw that they had departed from the gospel order in nearly everything, and were walking with women who were not the bride, the Lamb's wife. They seemed to have some favor, but now I could see that they were not truly loyal to the one husband-Jesus. I left them, as I believe, in obedience to the command given me in answer to the question which I was made to ask nearly every hour in the day for several months--'Lord what wilt thou have me to do?'

"Why did I ask for a home with the Old Baptist? Because I believed them to be exclusively the church of the Lord Jesus Christ, and because my mind could have no ease, peace, or rest till I did."

Now, dear reader, I will ask you a question or two. Do you love Jesus? Are you satisfied that you are in the old church which he constituted while here on earth? Do you feel to say, like that young orphan widow--Ruth-did to her mother-in-law, "Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge; thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the Lord do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me ?" I would preach Jesus to you as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land. If I am not mistaken my hope rests alone 'upon Him. And it is Jesus alone, and Jesus only, that I desire to preach to poor mourning hearts. Jesus is my only comfort and life. He is my light in darkness; my pillow of rest in weariness; my only sweet 'mid intense bitterness; my food when I am hungry; my drink when I am thirsty; my way, when lost; my truth, my gospel, my rock and foundation; my Shepherd, my King, my Priest, my Master. He is the train which is rapidly carrying us to our long-sought happy home. How I long for home--sweet heavenly home. The brilliant light of that eternal city will sparkle for those who are gathering on that blissful shore. The train even now, has passed the last station with some of you. Gradually the 'time draws nigh when the conductor of our train will announce the great Union Depot--heaven --where the acclamations of joy will cause the very universe to tremble! Oh, will I be there? Or will I be left out? May God grant that you and I, dear reader, may be there. If your longing desire is to be with them here, you have an evidence that you will be with them there. If you love them, you ought to come and obey the command of the Savior.

I close by adding a few lines composed by Elder John Detherage, as an exhortation to the little lambs and dear saints living out of duty:

Come in thou blessed of the Lord;
  Come in; obey God's holy word; in,
  Come in thou fearful, trembling saint.
  Come in, tell God's children your complaint.

Come in; no longer stay without;
  Your lingering is because you doubt;
  Come in, though sin beset you sore;
  Your tarrying makes you sin the more.

Come in, though doubts beset you round;
  Come in, such doubts with saints are found;
  Come in, though weary, faint and poor;
  Why stand ye trembling at the door?

Come in the fold, poor, wandering sheep;
  Why stand without, alone, to weep?
  Come in and tell your hopes and fears;
  Come, though they've been for many years.

Come in; a loving bride says come;
  Come in; the Spirit says there's room;
  Come in, a loving Jesus cries;
  Come in, dear children, be baptized.

CHAPTER XIII.

Why I Am a Primitive Baptist

These forty questions will show something of my views and where I believe the true church of Christ is to be found today. Those who do not love the church can hardly answer these questions without plowing with Samson's heifer. They can easily be answered by those who love Zion:

1st. What people is it that teaches that God saves both the adult and the infant identically the same way?

2. What denomination of religious people teach that all infants dying in infancy are saved by the quickening power of the Holy Spirit?

3. Who teaches that God never saves any one except those whom he intended to save, before the foundation of the world?

4. What people preach eternal, personal and unconditional election?

5. Who teaches that the atonement of Christ is efficient and perfectly effectual for all whom God intended to redeem?

6. What people is it that bases the salvation of the sinner entirely and exclusively upon the work of Christ?

7 In what denomination do the preachers tell the people that Jesus commences, continues and completes the sinner's eternal salvation regardless of the actions of any and everybody else?

8. Is there more than one religious body that holds that men and money have nothing to do with the sinner's eternal salvation? If there is but one, which is that one ?

9. What people hold that God never has had but one way of saving infant or adult, Jew or Gentile, bond or free, wise or unwise, and have not been afraid to preach Jesus as that one way?

10. What preachers never ask a salary?

11. What denomination of preachers never contradict the text of Scripture which says: "They shall not teach every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord?"

12. Who teaches that God never has been deceived, disappointed or even surprised?

13. Who teaches that Christ, and not human preachers, is the sole author of living faith ?

14. Who holds that the sinner can not bring forth good fruit, such as repentance, until he is first made a good tree by the Holy Spirit's work?

15. Who contends that the sinner is positively dead in sins, without strength, hope or ability to come to Christ, until he is first quickened into eternal life?

16. What people scripturally hold and logically teach that the same cause always produces the same effect and that no effect is without a cause, and putting the cause before the effect they preach Christ before the church regeneration before baptism, blood before the water, grace before works, salvation before obedience, love before marriage, lightning before thunder, life before action?

17. Where is the church that never puts light for darkness, bitter for sweet, and the "cart before the horse," by telling the dead sinner that Christ is begging him to go to work to get life ?

18. Where are the preachers that tell the people that the lightning and not the thunder is what kills, spiritually ?

19. Who holds that God is as Sovereign in grace as

he is in giving the natural sunshine and rain ?

20. Where is the people that teach that the Preached gospel, like the sunshine and rain, never benefits that which is dead?

21 Who contends that their preachers nor any one else, is the means of giving, vegetable, animal, or human life, and also likewise, that they are not the means of giving Spiritual life?

22. Who holds that repentance and faith are good fruits and are always produced by a good tree?

23. Who holds that the above characters, whose hearts are made good, are the only kind that receive the gospel with any profit ?

24. What people never use any means to give the sinner eternal life?

25. What people believe that God has never used but one organization (the church and ministry) as a means of spreading the preached word?

26. Who holds that Christ never authorized the starting of any other organization?

27. Who requires, like John the Baptist, that persons seeking membership in this, must forsake all others, confess their sins, be baptized?

28. What church opposes human secret societies among its members?

29. Where can we find a church organization that never gives fairs, suppers, concerts, festivals, quilt rafflings, etc., and have nothing to do with those who do?

30. Who is it that like the apostles and the martyrs, never used instrumental music in their churches?

31. What people, like Paul and Peter, James and John, refused, like a virtuous woman, to imitate Rome, the mother of Harlots, by singing duets, solos, using horns, cornets and fiddles?

32. Who is it that never receives or recognizes the ordinance of baptism administered by others, and thus like the martyrs are subjected to persecution?

33. What people has stood opposed to boards, conventions and the modern mission system ever since it began ?

34. What order of people never hire a man either to begin or to quit preaching?

35. Who believes that education is only incidentally helpful, and not at all necessary to successful preaching?

36. Who teaches, like the apostle Peter, 1st Peter i:18-19, that no sinner has ever gone to hell for the want of more missionary money ?

37. Who is it that holds that no person's neglect will be the cause of another's eternal damnation ?

38. Who is it that teaches that Christ is not like a widower, an old bachelor, or a Mormon, but that he has one wife, who is one, and that as His church it has come down by succession from the apostles, and will stand till the end of time?

39 Who holds that Christ has thoroughly and perfectly furnished all the furniture for his church, his wife; and has never even borrowed as much as a broom (aid society) from the world or the devil ?

40. Who is it that can answer every one of these questions without boasting or condemning themselves ?

CHAPTER XIV.

Confessions

I do not know that my tongue is the pen of a ready writer, but my heart is full, like a cart with many sheaves, and I feel like I want to speak this once yea twice, whether man will receive it or not. Hell and destruction are not yet full, and the ways of men are set on evil.

"And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes: and I prayed unto the Lord my God and made my confession, and said, 0 Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments: We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts, and from thy judgments: neither have we harkened unto thy servants, the prophets, which spake in thy name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land. 0 Lord, righteousness belongeth unto thee, but unto us confusion of faces, as at this day: to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to all Israel, that are near, and to all that are far off, through all the countries whither thou hast driven them, because of their trespass that they have trespassed against thee. 0 Lord, to us belongeth confusion of face, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against thee. To the Lord our God belongeth mercies and forgiveness, though we have sinned against him," etc. "And while I was speaking and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the Lord my God for the holy mountain of my God; yea, while I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly touched me about the time of the evening oblation."

I have not quoted all of Daniel's prayer and confession in the ninth chapter of Daniel. It is a most wonderful prayer of confession, and sad and mournful supplication, but it was the most wonderful confession I have ever seen in print. Who can have the good spirit to pray such a prayer as this? "But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which seeth in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly." Matt. 6:6.

How many are truly wanting Christian peace and prosperity? Here is the way to get it indeed. This kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting. "Pray ye the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest." A little child shall lead them. Where is this little child to lead the praying people to their knees, that they may continue in humble fervent supplication, and put away foolish jesting and worthless contention?

Prayer is the soul's desire, whether uttered or expressed. Who will go into the closet or secret grove in the quiet hour, in the day of salvation, in the accepted time and in humble honest confession and the prayer of the suffering, like Judah before Joseph, and seeing our awful need at this time will beg the Lord our God for healing mercies? We may find this eternal power and Godhead in the healing balms in Gilead. Let us not rest on our beds until we pray like Jesus said pray. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. Where, O where shall rest be found ? Rest for the weary soul ? We must die soon.

"Jesus can make the dying bed,
   Feel soft as downy pillows are,
   While on His Breast we lean our head,
   And breathe our lives out sweetly there."

Savior, the night is long. Do give us rest from trouble, for vain is the help of man.

CHAPTER XV.

Husband's Last Message to Wife

The book of Revelation is the last message that Jesus Christ sent to His Bride so far as the Bible is concerned. Why should we decide that it is the least important? Can you afford to say that? Why do we not study it more? Men will burn the midnight oil to prepare themselves as doctors and as school teachers, and as farmers and yet how many give their time to study God's word? Are we baptized with the Holy Ghost so that we can quote the Scriptures without study? By no means. But we hope and beg for all that help that He is minded to give us, or else we can not understand it after we have studied. Suppose that a distant rich man would write many letters to his afflicted wife, and send them to the servants to deliver to his wife, and they would say, "Well I will deliver all these messages to his wife except his last one and I will decide that I don't believe that last message is very important anyway, so I will just suppress that one?" What would the husband of that wife think and do to that servant? Who then is that faithful and wise servant, whom his Lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?" Blessed is that servant whom his Lord, when he cometh shall find so doing. "Verily I say unto you he shall make him ruler over all his goods." Woe, woe unto us that have rejected this Scripture. This last message was given to the angels to give to the churches. Are the angels giving this last message to the churches ? But says one: "I do not understand the book of Revelation." Are you sure that you understand the other? May be if we were giving more of the message that is for such a time as this, we would not be fussing and dividing up so much. May it be the will of our God to put us to work at the things more on the lines of His bidding and save us from ourselves.

But how can I believe that the last message that Jesus Christ sent to His Bride was of not much importance? No, I do not believe that Jesus sent any letters to His Bride that were not important, and most especially the last one. I am not sure that I fully understand this last message, but this is only another reason why I should study it, and be handing to the Bride such of it as I can see some light on. I fear there is too little study of the book of Revelation, and too little prayer for light on it. The natural history of the world from the days of Christ to this duty is in line with the symbols of the book of Revelation. These awful beasts, and that dragon in the 12th chapter, means temporal governments in their opposition to the churches and ministers of Jesus. That Bad Woman on the beast is the horrible church of Rome and her history is a long one.

The good woman in the 12th chapter of Revelation is the church of Jesus, His Bride, travelling and trying to get away from the beast. This history is also a long one. It is good to read ecclesiastic history in this study. This book shows that old Babylon shall be overthrown. Every false system shall go down, and all the errors and sins of God's people shall go to nothing and be overthrown. So mote it be. Let truth stand, let fairness, kind dealing and forgiveness stand, and let every word spoken by the Lord Jesus stand, and let the other go to the moles and bats. God's perfection and man's imperfection shall be fully known and believed that no flesh should glory in His presence.

CHAPTER XVI

The Whole Gospel and Counsel of God

I saw in a vision a clump of seven trees enveloped with burning flames, and the flames rising up licking the clouds and lapping the skies. I gazed and gazed and wondered and wondered until I remembered that Moses saw a bush with flames of fire around it but did not consume it. So I Saw in my vision. While the flames did not consume the trees, yet the cobwebs were burnt out, also the bugs and spiders and dead leaves were burnt or blown out.

In this I saw the seven fold gospel of the Son of the eternal God, whose power and seven fold attributes had sent the gospel in all of its fullness, and it was to reflect the perfections of the power and Godhead of the triune God of the universe. Two things that must and will be advertised in the gospel, the imperfections of man, and the perfection of God.

It must all come forth in the gospel of Jesus.

1. The great doctrine of God's perfection, sovereignty, predestination and election. That God chose His people in Christ before the foundation of the world, that they should be holy and without blame before Him in love.

2. Then the evidence of election. Experience of grace. Felt sense of sinfulness. Need of help, a crying out in sorrow for the things of Christ. Finally a hope of rest when the work of burning is finished.

3. Repentance and faith as the fruits of grace, and as Paul said: "Testifying to both Jews .and Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ."

4. The doctrine and duty of .prayer which seems to be neglected. Pray without ceasing in private, in the closet, fasting without presumption. The churches become dead, as well as the preachers when prayer is forgotten. "Thy Father which seeth in secret, Himself shall reward thee openly." Some have no open rewards because they do not seek the Lord in secret.

5. Baptism, without the mark of the beast. The Eunuch and Phillip went straight down into the water, the Eunuch was baptized in the water like Jesus was. It sets forth the death, burial and resurrection of both Christ and His people. We must set it forth.

6. All the discipline that cuts off the wicked that have no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ. It is a wicked church that receives and keeps the wicked, swearers, drinkers, adulterers, and wicked people in the church, She works to get them in.

7. The hope of heaven and future eternal glory in the Millenium, the seventh day period, the golden, holy promised Sabbath of the restitution of all things, the resurrection of the body of the saints, the fulfillment of all that God has planned. It is coming, it is coming, "Every eye shall see Him." All these things must be upheld, as growing trees, and the power of God is all that can do this, so we beg for that power, as the flames of the Holy Spirit plays on this testimony of Jesus, which is the spirit of prophecy. As the flames rise toward the sky, so all the gospel preached in its fullness will be upheld by the fire of the Holy Ghost and will rise to heaven to give God the glory due to His perfect name .

CHAPTER XVII.

List of Some of the Deceased Ministers in Texas

UNION ASSOCIATION was the first one in Texas. Here are some of the early ministers of that body: Daniel Parker. Benjamin, Parker, Ben Young, John Owens, James McClain, James Rockmore, Richard Gibson, L. G. Aspley, Moses Denman, Thomas Hanks, J. G. Neal, J. J. Johns, J. B. Martin. Union was organized about 1833.

SULPHUR FORK ASSOCIATION. about 1835: Cado Parker, Mark Allen, W. B. Stringer, J. E. Knighton, John Denton, J. J. Page, A. Hefner, J. W. Ray, W. J. Caudle, R. T. Webb, J. E. Carter.

LITTLE HOPE, 1844: Thomas Britton, Satterwhite, A. Mason.

PILOT GROVE, 1849: J. E. Detherage, W. J. Sorelle, W. A. Green, J. M. C. Robertson, Jacob Sikes, J. H. Gotcher, J. K. Gotcher, B. F. Casey, T. N. Cutler, Henry Hurley, W. H. Price, Wetzel Fisher, W. H. Daniels, S. W. Webb, J. W. Cavner, Joel Lewis, J. W. Segler.

CONCORD, 1858: W. S. Smith, Jesse Graham, S. Wheat, T. S. Whitely, J. H. Russell, G. W. McDonald, W. J. Fleming, J. S. Meeks, T. N. Buchanan, E. M. Weeks, P. T. Watson.

PROVIDENCE, 1850: J. Harper, Jesse Gage, Moses Gage, James Johnson, Garrison Greenwood, Calvin M. Gage, George Daniels, A. Smith, J. O. Barnett, Orin Guthrie, R. W. Ellis, J. M. Baker, J. W. Baker, W. C. Purcell, A. Baker, J. W. Shook, J. E. Woods, R. Baker, W. J. Hester, W. M. Roden, Jesse Davis, W. S. Dubose, J. G. Currington, R. Whitehead.

SOUTHWEST TEXAS, A. A. Culpepper, A. Dancer, S. C. Kyle, A. B. Miley, J. C. White,-----Griffith, killed by Indians.

FRIENDSHIP: J. E. Woods, M. F. Wright, S. R. Woods, J. K. Holcomb, C. Holcomb.

PRIMITIVE: Wm. Thomas, J. T. Seeley, H. White, W. A. Davenport, S. Bryant, G. R. Hogue, J. H. Weeks, A. L. Hosier, W. A. Moon, S. C. Denton. The Primitive Association was organized in 1880.

BOSQUE RIVER ASSOCIATION was constituted in 1882. C.A. Russell, E. M. Weeks, E. M. Caudle, J. M. Stewart, C. T. Nance.

LITTLE FLOCK was organized in 1884: Wm. Thomas, Dr. M. D. Denman, M. C. C. Maples, A. V. Atkins, Wm. Guess, R. A. Mercer, H. Kilgore, L. H. Stuckey.

VILLAGE CREEK, organized in 1879- B. L. Thornberry, W. Hefner, T. A. Waldrip, W. L. Rogers, R. H. Parish, J. A. Paine, N. N. Morris, T. G. Miller.

TRINITY RIVER was organized about 1857: Wm. Flannagan, Sam Clark, J. W. Putman, j. S. Collins, A. D. Bourland, Sam McKelvey, Jno. Sneed, ___ _._ Autrey, A. Matlock, W. V. S. Allen, James Staggs, Oscar Rutledge, C. C. Pope, --- Voiles.

UNITY ASSOCIATION was organized in 1891: D. W.. Russell, G. W. Burns, J. J Hand.

WEST PROVIDENCE ASSOCIATION was organized in 1901' I. N. Lewis, J. R. Bolinger, j. B. Downing, W. M. Lago, E. W. Needham, M. R. Jackson, John M. Morgan, C. H. Boyett, J. M. Morrow, T. I. Mobley, W. H. Bodine.

PANHANDLE-OKLAHOMA ASSOCIATION was organized in 1903- J.A. Jones, David Utt, A. L. Harris.

OLD HARMONY ASSOCIATION was organized 1879; W. S. Harris, W. C. Burks, M. H. Hutchison, L. W. Harvey, W. M. Dumas, F, D. L. Koen, S. A. Paine, W. J. Hester, Jasper Chambers, J. W. Retor.

NEW HARMONY ASSOCIATION was organized in 1892- S. N. Stephens, J. C. Brison.

BRAZOS RIVER ASSOCIATION was organized in 1879: D. P. Thomas, J. A. Barnfield, p. M. Lancaster, L. R. Gee, John Tyler, G. T. Robinson, W. T. Coston, W. B. Underwood, W. N. Hendrix.

TIMBER CREEK was organized 1895: L. M. Gordon, P. M. Pearce.

RED RIVER ASSOCIATION was organized in 1886: J. W. Cavner, G. A. Paine, Daniel Short.

ENON ASSOCIATION was organized in 1898: J.W. Griffin, Micheal Burkhalter, J. W. Bareley, Jones, Edwards.

CHAMBERS CREEK ASSOCIATION, 1901: A.F. Grafton, J. B. Vann.

HILL COUNTY ASSOCIATION was organized in 1898: R. A. Biggs, E. R. Robinson, J. W. Merrideth, J. H. Thompson.

Other names overlooked: James Stinnett, Hiram Savage, Jesse Butler, Calvin Gage, Benjamin Walker, William Bracken, G. Fitzhugh, Thomas Hanks, S. G. · Atkins, Jno. Bryan, John Deaton.

MOUNT ZION ASSOCIATON started in 1900: J.D. Hopkins, W. M. Allen, J. A. Campbell, J. S. Watson' W. N. Pharis (licensed), G. W. Burns, C. T. Richardson.

Names belonging to other connections: Dr. Mathis, S. Huffer, J. Finney, C. A. Polk, James Bedford, D. J. E. Clark, Thomas Miller, A. Matlock, T. G. Greenwood, McNeely.

Some of these ministers were not connected with the association where they are listed when they died and in some cases their connection was not certainly known when they died, but had been formerly connected at the association where their names are given. In some cases, as the Parkers, it is known that their views were not in harmony with those that for a time corresponded with them. As years went on these things were gradually corrected. Some of this is from memory and some from Newman's History, and I have used a few old minutes.

CHAPTER XVIII

Our Departed Ministers and My Home Church

In this list of Preachers that I have published are some that I knew long years ago, some died young. I did dearly love George Paine because I was with him more than some others and did dearly love him for his Godly walk and earliest desire to stir up the Old School Baptists on the neglected things that our Churches may be more alive. He did not persecute me as some have done and have not yet turned from it. I can freely forgive a dear brother who asks me to forgive him for hard things he has said against me. If I thought he wanted me to forgive him, I do not nor would not want to require him to make acknowledgments to me, I want to be forgiven by any and all of my brethren that I have said hard things about. Many of our dear old ministers have spent a long life in the ministry, and some have made mistakes. I was to avoid all the mistakes I have heretofore made, and all those that I think some of our dear brethren have made. They have run their course, their work is done. Let me not heap up harshness on their memory, even though we differed from them most distinctly.

Daniel Parker was a strange character. Except on the two-seed doctrine, he was right along on the old Articles of Faith. He and others cut down the forked elm, hewed out a kind of saddle, used Cowhides to make stirrups and girts, rode thousands of miles to preach and organize churches, baptize the people, and I do not suppose he ever received any financial help. Not a great deal of that going on yet, like Paul preached it. Thomas Britton was a contemporary with some of the Parkers, but did not accept the two-seed doctrine. He was part of the time in the Little Hope Association, while the Parkers were mostly in the Union Association. The next association in Texas was the Sulphur Fork, and it has had some noted men in its bounds. Elder Burkhalter was moderator for a long time so I am told by Brother W. H. Morgan, of Eldorado, Oklahoma. R. T. Webb was very noted in the Sulphur Fork, and Eld. Cado Parker. I never saw R. T. Webb nor any of the Parkers, but I knew J. E. Carter, H. B. Jones, Lodon and others. Many that we thought hard of have passed and gone. We must soon pass on after them, and I do not want to harbor malice to any that has differed from me and said hard things against me. Some that have said the most bitter things against me are now dead and gone and their case and mine was and is in the hands of the great God of the Universe. Elder Samuel Clark used to come to my father's house when I was a boy. He was a good man. Uncle Joe Fisher told me that when horses were scarce that he saw Brother Clark lead his horse and have his wife to ride. He saw this at old Siene in Collin County. He went far and near to preach without scrip or purse. I can not heap up reproach on these dear old fathers after they are dead and gone even though I differed from them on some things. Elder D. J. E. Clark, who was 'the son of Sam Clark, is now dead. He was a good man. I loved him because I think he was a Christian man of honesty and uprightness. I know some of his children. I loved Elder Ben Casey, who sure did preach with power, the doctrine of grace. Also my blessed companion Elder C. T. Richardson. Elder James McClain of the early day in East Texas, dreamed that he was sent for to come to see ten sick people. His dream bothered him. Next day a man rode up to his door, and asked if he would go and preach some in a community where there never had been any preaching. He agreed and when the day rolled around went to the appointment. A neighbor young man in the home community went with Elder McClain to the distant appointment. In the dream the old brother had dreamed that he did go to see the sick folks and all were strangers, but the above young man who was the only one of the sick that he knew, who made up eleven in the company of the sick, and the Elder gave each sick one some kind of soup out of a bowl that he found, and so all in the dream were cured at once. So the above meeting was started, and finally ten joined the church and they went to the water to baptize these. Just as the tenth was brought out of the water, the said young man broke down in tears and begged to be baptized and so it was and that was the end of his dream. God moves in mysterious ways.

I was baptized on the fourth Sunday in January near Cincinnati, Ohio, 1893, cutting the ice some sixteen inches thick, and the ground was covered with snow, by Elder J. G. Eubanks, now of State Road, Del. I moved to Young County, Texas, in 1900, joined the Mt. Zion church near Graham, Texas, and have been the pastor there for twenty five years. For some reason in the mercy of God, I have never had a charge against me, nor has there ever been any strife nor division in this church, nor in the Mt. Zion Association to which I belong.

This church belonged to Unity Association and was dismissed by letter in peace in 1900, and that year connected with, or started Mt. Zion Association. I hereby solemnly affirm that I have never changed my views on the fundamental principle of the gospel, but I have contended for some few expressions that were so controverted in their nature, that I feel sure it would have been much better to use such language as can be easier understood. It is so worthless for brethren to be contending over doubtful things when their minds could be so much better engaged. "But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strife, and the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient." 2 Tim. 2:23-4. There are some questions that I deem no one can answer. This one: Why did God allow rebellion and sin to arise against Himself, while He had all power, and was perfectly able to prevent it ? I have never found any answer to this and never expect to. It is not necessary to be fooling away precious time when there are plenty of things that we ought to be discussing, such as secret prayer, almsgiving, fasting, reading the Bible. Sometimes, however, I greatly enjoy the solemn statements of the doctrine of the eternal majesty of God, his immutability, power, His unhurried and unhindered providence, that rules and overrules all things, until all His special purpose is perfectly accomplished. God is no more the cause of sin than the sun in the heavens is the cause of darkness and ice. "Be not weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not." Gal. 6:9. We can not obey the Lord without His grace, but are often neglectful, and the blame rests upon us, and not the Lord.

God's predestination in the King James version refers to salvation and it would be easier understood to use it that way. Let us dismiss so much argument on doctrine and talk on the neglected parts. To preach one line all the time is worthless. Grace does not obey the ordinance of baptism for us, but gives us desire and strength to go forward in obedience.

There was a council held at my home church in connection with the act of the church in a certain matter. The council endorsed the former act of the church. Our church's order has never been questioned so far as I know by orderly Baptists. Our records have ever been ready for inspection of any one that has any real interest in the good of the cause, and not seeking strife. The wolf pursues the lamb, but the lamb does not pursue the wolf. The hawk pursues the dove, but the dove does not pursue the hawk. Watch for similarities. "By this I know that thou favorest me; because mine enemy doth not triumph over me." "And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly how to cast the mote out of thy brother's eye." "Let a bear robbed of her whelps meet a man, rather than a fool in his folly." "lie that hideth hatred with lying lips, and he that uttereth a slander is a fool." Prov. 10:18.

Elder J. J. Johns organized a church in King County that finally moved on and made what is now Wanderers Creek church at Odell, Texas. He moved on to Oklahoma organized some churches there and died, I believe, at Tecumseh, Oklahoma. One time I was at the Red River Association in Fannin County and was appointed to preach at 11 o'clock Sunday, and just before the services I rode in a buggy with an elder down to the creek to water his horse. As we were going he told me of some ugly things a certain preacher had said about me. This worried me some until suddenly this Scripture came tome with power: "Behave thyself." I did not know it was in the Bible until I hunted it up, and I took it for my text that day, as Elder R. A. Biggs and I occupied the stand. That was a day of light and liberty for me, and I rejoiced in the God of deliverance.

I once dreamed that I was fishing near a very large log that went into the water and extended back on the ground. I caught two fish on the upper side of the log and one on the lower side. I did not suppose there was much in it but at the association two joined the church, but their baptism was put off until the next meeting. At this meeting the wife of one of these first ones joined the church. We went to the Brazos River. At the place where we decided to baptize these was a tree top and log in the water. I baptized the two men above the tree top and then as the water was too shallow, I took the woman around below the tree top and did find deeper water. I had been much exercised in mind as to whether one of the men was a true child of God. But when finally I saw all three of them as fish, I decided they were all children of God, else I would not have seen them as fish. Fish represents the children of God, but frogs and lizards and snakes represent the opposite.

When Abraham offered Isaac upon the altar he was preserved from the suffering. So when Christ was offered upon the altar, the divinity did not die or suffer. But you remember that Abraham looked and saw a ram caught in a thicket by his horns, and went and took the ram and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son. Here the lamb was caught and could not escape. Sn the humanity of Jesus Christ was caught by the law of God in the eternal covenant and now it could not escape. "But those things, which God before had showed by the mouth of all His prophets, that Christ should suffer, He hath so fulfilled." Acts 3:18. "Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come: That Christ should suffer, and that He should be the first that should rise from the dead, and should shew light unto the people, and to the Gentiles." Acts 26:22-23. Isaac Was of higher order of life than the ram. So much more the divinity of Jesus was of higher order of life than the humanity, and it was not the perfect nature of the Divine Christ that suffered but the lower, the human nature prepared and provided by the perfect holy hand of God. Our God will not accept an offering except such as His own hands have prepared. No sermon that a man prepares, nor any other offering that was prepared by man can be accepted by Jehovah, for he can not look upon sin, and all our works have the sinful touch. "The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the Lord." Prov. 16:1. As the divine nature is unchangeable, therefore, it could not suffer.

Elder J. G. Eubanks was just leaving for home from one of his appointments, from the home of a Brother Stout, I believe is the name, when he told him to come back with him to a distant room in the back of the buildings, and when he got there he said: "Here is a little pouch that I want you to put in your grip and take it along. You might need it." So the preacher took the sack and dropped it in his grip wondering what it could be. When he got home he told his wife what the old brother had said and they opened the sack together and found it to be four hundred dollars in gold. It was convenient to have around the place, to be sure.

I started from home to Nashville, Tennessee, to be at the Stone's River Association. I soon found by Oversight that I was out of money. I got acquainted with a young medical student who was on his way to the medical school In Nashville, and he loaned me what I needed.

The first trip I ever made to Missouri, I baptized two at the first appointment. This was at Sedalia, Mo., which was the home of Elder Jacob Cloud, and this dear brother has long since passed away. I knew Elder Jonas Sutton, who was moderator of the Two River Association. I met Elder Brown, who has long since passed away. He was a peaceable man and I loved him. I knew many ministers in Missouri. Many of the names have slipped away from me. I recall Elder Silas Sears, Elder Dark, Stephen R. Williams. I think of several in Illinois, among them Elder I. N. Vanmeter and others whose names I can not now recall. In Indiana there were the Thompsons. I have stayed a night with James Thompson, who was a son of Wilson Thompson, and father of Elders Robert and John M. Thompson. I knew Elder Hon and Hunsinger, Elder Potter and Daily. Elder J. H. Oliphant wrote a book that I read before I joined the Baptists. I think he is yet alive. (May, 1925). Elders P. H. James and Thomas Peterson were lovely ministers of Arkansas. I knew Elders Yarbrough and Foster and Eli Robertson. I have preached with all these. Elder Little of the New Hope Association was a blessed brother. I knew the Kirklands, K. M. Myatt, Perkins, Boaz, Jenkins, Thomas and Taylor. These lived in Tennessee and Kentucky. "These all died in faith having not received the promise, that they without us should not be made perfect."

I knew James Baker, John Baker, Robert Baker as ministers of Christ who have passed on to rest in a better world. Dr. Paine, Saint Paine, his son, were blessed Texas preachers and lovely men. I knew the Gotchers, who were active when I first joined the church. Joel Lewis, Bob Parish, Elder W. S. Harris, R. A. Biggs, F, D. L. Koen were all preaching in Texas in my early days, and they have gone to the Chief Shepherd to receive the crown that fadeth not away. My poor heart remembers them in my longing for the grace that saved them and prepared them for a better world. Elder William Burks had sweet fatherly words to this poor boy as I saw his trembling lips when I was preaching in Old Harmony Association. I have seen Elder Silas Durand and heard him preach before I joined the Baptists. I once wrote to Elder William Mitchell that I was praying for a double portion of his spirit. He wrote me and prayed for me. I have seen Elder J. E. W Henderson and loved him. Elder P. M. Pearce and Elder L. M. Gordon were companions of mine when I lived at Collinsville, Texas. Elder A. D. Bourland was a lovely friendly brother with great hospitality. I knew his sons who have always been precious to me for their father's sake. Elder W. D. Russell was a pleasant brother but I was not with him much. He was pastor at Mt. Zion church before me. He had moved to South Texas. Elder Dean of Stephens County was a dear beloved brother. Elder J. J. Hand and I were good friends. Elders L. R. Gee, Ramfield and I. N. Lewis were peaceable men. Elder J. A. Jones died in the love and fellowship of his dear brethren, as also did Elder David Utt. Elder W. L. Rogers, James Wagnor, and McAdams were kindly lovely brethren. I knew Elders M. C. C. Maples, William Guess and Brother Downing. Elders Allen, Hopkins, Campbell, and J. W. Jones, all of whom I have heard preach and have preached with them. Elders G. W. Burns and J. L. Hughes were so very humble that I was greatly drawn to them. These with others that I have known have gone on where all is peace, and their spirits are basking in the eternal light and perfect love and glory of God. I ask all my dear brethren whose eyes are set on things above to let us imitate their virtues and condone their faults and run with devoted and loving hope and prayer the precious race set before us steadily looking unto Jesus for the high victory over all sin and sorrow.

I am your brother and companion in the sufferings and patience of Jesus, as I hope and pray, a poor sinner saved by grace. J.H.F.

The Need and Blessedness of Peace

"If you bite and devour one another take heed lest ye be consumed one of another."--Gal. 5:15.

It is certainly discouraging to see and know of so much division and strife among our people. I love the Primitive Baptists, but I do not love wrangling and strife. I desire to see a return of peace with all our people.

It is hard to know how union could be restored--what to do to bring peace. There is an important work for our wisest brethren to point out the way to peace. If all of us could see the need of union among us, it would help. If we could see how ruinous to the cause it is to have our elders divided and warring against each other. Good might result if we could seek to be "peace-makers" more; peace is so sweet and it is so good to dwell together in unity. We can well afford to deny ourselves in order to union. Differences of views may be held on some matters and we still live together in love. Some errors will die as soon, or sooner by silence. I wish we could know when it is best to be silent. I know silence is a splendid thing sometimes, and no doubt it is sometimes wrong to be silent. The Primitive Baptists are good and worthy people, but there is too much strife among them I think; but I do not know how to deal with so delicate a matter. I believe Elder Hassell is trying to keep his paper from being a means of publishing local troubles.

Eld. A. B. Morris said some good words in the June Messenger. I believe it is needed that we study how to bring union and peace to our churches. We must be faithful to truth, and must strive together for peace.

We may bear anything that is of a personal nature, and, if we do this, it will help. We should be gentle and kind when contending. I hope our elders and brethren will study this subject and open it up to us. With love.---J. H. Oliphant, (Gospel Messenger, 1915).

I here give the ringing words of this old servant, who is over eighty years old and now decrepit. I recommend his humble words. No one is responsible except for his own conduct. We do not have to answer for what the other party is doing. How about self?

J. H. F.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 21 October 2008 )
< Previous   Next >

Purpose

The Primitive or Old School Baptists cling to the doctrines and practices held by Baptist Churches throughout America at the close of the Revolutionary War. This site is dedicated to providing access to our rich heritage, with both historic and contemporary writings.