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Most of the articles on these WebPages have been written by godly men with a central belief in the Lord Jesus Christ. However as with most of us, they may have different beliefs concerning some particular doctrines. These articles have been made available for the purpose of “gleaning the good” where good can be found. I do not necessarily endorse all that is written by others, anymore than I expect others to endorse all that I write.

Hassells History of the Church of God

 

C.B. Hassell

CHAPTER X

 

THE DOCTRINE OF GRACE, AND MISSIONS

 

 

 

 

  Sylvester Hassell

The history of the doctrine of grace and of scriptural and unscriptural missions is given in the present chapter. It is thought that a connected view of these important subjects will be snore interesting and instructive than the dispersion of this information through the records of nineteen centuries.

Old School, Primitive, or BIBLE BAPTISTS, believe and rejoice in the absolute sovereignty of God, their heavenly Father —in the entire dependence of all His creatures upon Him, both in nature and in grace; a doctrine that leads its adherents to abandon all confidence in creature power, and to exercise a living and a loving trust in the Most High. While they utterly repudiate, on the one hand, that total and wretched perversion of the doctrine of predestination called fatalism (a blind, unconscious, mechanical, necessitated condition of the universe), which, like pantheism, virtually abolishes all human accountability and all distinction between good and evil, right and wrong, and which is the fundamental doctrine of heathenism, Mohammedanism and nature-worship; they equally reject, on the other hand, that rationalism which appears, more or less, in the various forms of Pelagianism, Semi-Pelagianism or Arminianism, Socinianism, Deism, Unitarianism, Universalism, Indifferentism, Skepticism, Materialism, Agnosticism and Infidelity, and which places human reason above the plain declarations of the Bible, either receiving only so much of the inspired Scriptures as can be grasped by the natural understanding, or else, while professing to receive all the Bible, really explaining away and annihilating all the force of the unpalatable and incomprehensible parts. It should be indelibly impressed upon the mind of every thinking person that, while ancient heathen God-contemning civilization fittingly attained its cultured golden meridian in the hideous revelries of Nero’s hymeneal night-banquet on Agrippa’s lake, near the Pantheon, in Rome, the Second Babylon, amidst blazing fireworks and music and rich garments and viands and demoniac pollution, as described by Tacitus, Suetonius and Juvenal-modern God-less civilization reached its logical culmination in the pandemonium of the French Revolution, at the close of the eighteenth century, when carnal reason (which is declared by Paul to be enmity to God) was embodied in the person of a human female, and enthroned upon the altar amid circumstances of Horrid debauchery. Bible Baptists believe, according to the testimony of the Scriptures, #Re 18:4 Isa 48:20 Jer 51:45 2Co 6:17 that many of the Lord’s people, through false teaching and superficial acquaintance with the inspired word, are captives in the Babylonian meshes of incipient rationalism, and that, for their own spiritual welfare, and the glory of God, they should come out and be separate from such unscriptural and ruinous errors, acknowledge Christ as their only Master, and render cheerful and fill obedience to Him.

The leading apostolic church in Greece, to which Paul preached a year and six months, and to which he wrote two of his longest epistles, was the church of Corinth. That church, as appears from those epistles, was troubled with a spirit of rationalistic, self-confident freedom, both in thought and conduct —a spirit seeking after worldly more than after heavenly wisdom. The inspired Apostle severely rebuked that spirit, but it broke out in several Greek churches with redoubled energy after his departure. In the second and third centuries this Hellenistic spirit, in the Alexandrian and Antiochian schools, attempting to combine Pagan philosophy with Christianity, developed what is known as the Greek Anthropology based upon the trichotomy of Pythagoras, Plato, and, after them, of the mass of Greek and Roman philosophers. They taught that man is composed of three distinct elements: 1st, soma, corpus, or bode, the material part; 2d, psuche, anima, or soul, the animal part (including animal life and propensities); and 3d, pneuma, mens, or spirit, the rational part (including the will and the moral affections); {1} and that, of these three elements, only the first two, the body and the soul, were affected by the fall of Adam, the third element, the spirit or will, being as free and pure in all men, when born, as it was in Adam before his fall; and this universal free-will of the human race; can and must take the first step in regeneration, and then the grace of God will meet and help it, arid, if the will continues to co-operate with Divine grace, the soul will be finally saved. This synergistic, or co-operative, or Semi-Pelagian theory of regeneration and salvation, basing the decision of man’s eternal destiny upon his natural free-will, had, for its ablest advocate, Origen (born A. D. 185, died 254), who also taught that men are fallen angels, and that all men, and all the wicked angels, even Satan himself, will be finally saved. Though in point-blank contradiction not only to the general tenor but to the plain letter of the Scriptures, #Joh 1:13,3:3-8 Ro 9:16,11:6 Php 1:6,2:13 Ps 110:3 Jas 1:18 synergism has prevailed throughout the Greek Catholic “Church” for 1,700 years, and still thus prevails; and the result, or rather the concomitance, is that the Eastern or Greek “Churches” are declared by the latest and ablest historians to be “dead,” “decayed,” “petrified.” Cyril Lucar, Patriarch of Constantinople, who believed the truth and attempted to teach it in the Greek communion, was five times deposed and finally strangled to death through the intrigues of the Jesuits, and his body thrown into the Bosphorus (A. D. 1638).

The monergistic or scriptural theory of regeneration teaches that there is but one efficient agent or actor in the renovation of the soul, namely, the Holy Spirit; that the will of fallen man is, like all his other faculties, utterly depraved, and has not the least ability or inclination to act holily until it has been renewed by Divine grace. This view was plainly set forth by Christ and His Apostles, as shown in the texts last quoted. It was first in the Latin Catholic "Church" clearly and powerfully maintained by Augustine (born 353, died 430), the ablest and most spiritual-minded of the so-called "Latin Fathers," who at first was an advocate of synergism, but was led by his deep experience and profound mind and intimate acquaintance with the Scriptures to abandon synergism for monergism. He maintained that the entire human race sinned and fell in Adam, according to the Scriptures, and became utterly depraved, both in will and in all their other powers, the unrenewed will being able to work only external righteousness or morality, but not at all internal righteousness or a spiritual conformity to the Divine law; that the activity of the human will, up to the pint of regeneration, is hostile to God, and cannot co-operate with the Divine agency in the regenerating act, so that the Holy Spirit must take the initiative in the change from sin to holiness, and effect this change by His sovereign and almighty power, as well as preserve the spiritual life thus imparted, in accordance with God’s eternal decree of electing love, to its perfection in heavenly glory, to the praise of the Divine mercy -while others, sinning of their own free will, of which they so much boast, and not caused to sin by God, who is of purer eyes than to behold iniquity, and who is the Sun of righteousness and not of unrighteousness, are justly left to go on and perish in their sins and pride, to the praise of the Divine Justice. Monergism, or Paulinism, or Augustinianism (as this view has been called), was first adopted by the Latin or Roman Catholic "Church," in the Councils of Orange and Valence, A. D. 529, but, except in a few clear and able minds, such as Bede, Anselm and Bernard, was soon practically abandoned, and superseded by a return to the Greek Anthropology and Semi-Pelagianism or Cassianism; and human free-will, in the Roman communion, sank into the Cimmerian darkness of the Middle Ages -a form of Paganism, embracing the authority of the Apocrypha and tradition, monasticism, unqualified baptismal regeneration, transubstantiation, Purgatory, priestly absolution, the meritoriousness of good works, works of supererogation, justification by works as well as by faith, the union of "Church" and State, churchly infallibility and supremacy, withholding the Bible from the masses, burying Divine service in a dead language, penances and pilgrimages, the worship of the Virgin Mary and other dead saints and their images and relics, the horrors of confessional, nunnery, inquisition and crusade, and the sale of indulgences to sin. The order of the Jesuits, founded by Ignatius Loyola, A. D. 1534, has always been thoroughly Semi-Pelagian or Pelagian; and Jesuitism is synonymous with mediaeval Catholicism, hypocrisy, unscrupulousness, mental reservation and amphibology. The Jansenists arose in the Roman Catholic communion about a hundred years afterward, and were Augustinian in doctrine, and earnestly opposed the Jesuits; since 1870 they have been identified with the "Old Catholics," and now number about 60,000. The Roman Catholic Council of Trent (A. D. 1542-1563), in its numerous Canons and Decrees, while jesuitically professing, in its general preliminary statements, to maintain the doctrine of the total depravity of human nature in consequence of the fall, and the necessity of salvation by grace alone, is uniformly Semi-Pelagian in its subsequent detailed explanations, and authoritatively affirms the deadly mediaeval errors enumerated a little while ago. Pope Plus IX., in 1854, officially affirmed the immaculate or sinless conception of the Virgin Mary, who is the peculiar object of Roman Catholic worship, as “the Mother of God” and “Queen of Heaven;” in the Vatican palace the picture of Mary is placed above the picture of the Trinity. The same Pope, in 1864, in the “Syllabus of Errors,” declares that “Church” and State ought to be united, and that the “Church” has the right to use force and temporal power. The Vatican Council of 1870 declares the Pope the successor of Peter, the vicar of Christ, the head and governor of the whole church, the father and teacher of all Christians, the supreme judge of the faithful, and that, when he speaks ex cathedra (or officially), he is infallible in all matters pertaining to faith and morals, and his definitions are irreformable; and those presuming to contradict this declaration are to be anathema (that is, excommunicated and accursed). Semi-Pelagianism, or Pseudo-Christian Pharisaism, or carnal free will, thus reaches its culmination, in the Roman Catholic communion, in substituting the Pope for God. #2Th 2:3,4

The Protestant Reformation was born, apparently, of an intense conviction of the utter sinfulness of man and his radical need of Divine regeneration. As the only antidote to the theoretical Semi-Pelagianism and the practical Pelagianism and the innumerable unspeakable pharisaical abominations of Catholicism, Luther and Calvin, in the sixteenth century, proclaimed anew, in trumpet tones, to the priest-ridden millions of Europe, the great Pauline and Augustinian doctrine of sin and grace —the entire natural equality and total depravity of all men in the eyes of an Infinitely Holy God, the absolute dependence of fallen man upon the sovereign mercy of the Most High, justification by faith alone (solifidianism) —nothing like this old Bible doctrine, when believed, to cut up human pride and merit and pharisaism by the roots, to humble man in the dust before God, to stir him up to heartfelt gratitude for the Divine salvation, to cause him to serve God in spirit from an inward principle of filial love, and to comfort him in trial and despondency. The severest denunciations of the Spirit of God had been uttered by the mouths of His prophets in the Old Testament, against a proud, heartless ceremonialism and legalism, and by Christ and His Apostles, in the New Testament, against a hypocritical pharisaical formalism. Something of the same burning and purifying Spirit doubtless animated the Protestant Reformers, and, under Divine Providence, and in connection with other events, made that great movement the transition from mediaeval to modern history, and the national dawn of universal civil and religious liberty (always advocated by the Baptists); so that today, after the lapse of four centuries, the direct influence of Rome upon the laws and governments of the civilized world is almost totally annihilated for a season. But, instead of a defective reformation, merely, the utter apostasy of Rome, carnalizing and defiling the pure spiritual religion of Christ, and repudiating Him when it set over itself another head, and made its kingdom a worldly one, needed a thorough-going renovation. Rome had become plainly-developed ANTI-CHRIST, and should not have been acknowledged in any sense as a church of Christ. Her subjection to tradition and human authority is a repudiation of Scripture and Divine authority. Choosing to obey man rather than God, she can in no respect be considered a church of Christ, and any derivation or succession from her is a prima facie evidence of the radical unscripturalness of any religious organization. The Protestant Reformers, though real heroes of some great doctrinal truths, were not endowed with sufficient grace or penetration or boldness to recognize this basal truth, and therefore conceded to Rome the attributes of a church of Christ, and retained many of her fatal, unscriptural doctrinal errors and practices —her traditionalism (an unauthorized departure from the written word of God, to which departure there can be no logical limit), her infant baptism, her national membership, her alliance with the State and consequent corruption and exercise of persecution for the purpose of enforcing religious uniformity, her hierarchism, her sacramentalism (the sealing and saving power of ordinances), her substitution of forms for personal piety, and of the authority of the “church” for the authority of the Bible. All these features are perfectly consistent and congenial with papal synergism, Semi-Pelagianism, pharisaism, but totally irreconcilable with the great monergistic, Pauline, Christian doctrine of Divine predestination and election, justification by faith alone, salvation by grace alone. The military followers of the Protestant princes wore embroidered on their right sleeves these letters, V. D. M. I. Ae (standing for Verbum Dei Manet Aeternum, The Word of the Lord endureth forever), to which pure and noble motto it is deeply to be regretted that they did not yield complete fealty.

Baptist Churches have no succession from Rome; they are conformed to and derived from the pure, spiritual, apostolic models presented in the New Testament; their leading principles were held by poor, humble, despised, unchurchy, persecuted sects (like their New Testament prototypes, #1Co 1:26-31 Jas 2:5 Mt 5:3-12 Ac 4:13,24:14,28:22); and it is admitted by candid Romanists, and it is perfectly obvious, that “Baptists are the only consistent and thorough antagonists of their creed, and that Baptist principles are necessary in their totality for the final overthrow of Romanism.”

The inconsistency and defectiveness of the principles of the original Protestant Reformers have, in a spiritual point of view, become more apparent and pronounced with the lapse of time, because seeds of error develop and grow and strengthen, so that very high Protestant authorities have declared Protestantism (like Catholicism) a failure. Sir William Hamilton, of the University of Edinburgh, the inexorable logician and common-sense philosopher, declares that Protestantism has gravitated back toward Catholicism, until the differences are only nominal. Prof. Philip Schaff, of New York, the ablest American church historian, and one of the first Presbyterian scholars of the United States, affirms that so many churchy and Catholic elements were retained by the Reformers that, as a growing consequence, much of present Protestantism must be, considered an apostasy from the position of Luther, Melanchthon and Calvin. Prof. A. A. Hodge, of Princeton, New Jersey, a distinguished Presbyterian theologian, makes the strong remark that the Protestant pulpit of today is as much in need of a thorough reformation as was the Catholic pulpit of four hundred years ago.

Of the three leading Protestant communions, the Anglican was the least reformed, the Lutheran next, and the Presbyterian the most. As Augustine, by his principal doctrine, is a heretic in the Catholic communion, says Prof. Schaff, so Luther, by the same doctrine, is a heretic in the Lutheran communion. Many of the Lutheran clergy have, during the present century, gone back to Rome. The Anglican body, ignoring Scripture and their own early history, have, for the last 250 years, been gradually growing more exclusive, more High-Church, and more Arminian, a strong and increasing party in that communion fondly styling themselves Anglo-Catholics, and many, not satisfied with this, actually deserting to Rome during the last fifty years (since the issuance of the scholastic, sacramentarian, and churchy Oxford Tracts, 1833-1841). A small daughter of the Anglican body, the (Whitefieldian) Welsh Calvinistic Methodists, though retaining some Catholic errors, advocate the Bible doctrine of salvation by grace alone; but a very large daughter, the Wesleyan Methodists, have in the main abandoned the cautious doctrinal reserve of the Semi-Calvinists, James Arminius and Richard Watson, their ablest theologians, and have dangerously approximated a Pelagian anthropology and soteriology, and adopted numerous worldly innovations, so that it has become a common remark that the new-fashioned Methodists are very different from the old. The Presbyterians, except the comparatively small Arminian Cumberland body, have remarkably adhered, by profession, to the scriptural doctrine of human depravity and Divine salvation and Christ’s sole headship of the church; but they have also continued to hold, inconsistently, to the fundamental errors of Catholic infant baptism (or rather rhantism) —a complicated system of church government founded upon worldly wisdom, instead of being founded upon the simple spiritual plan of the New Testament —affiliation with all professed Christians, even with Catholics —and, in Europe, the unspiritual, corrupting alliance between “church” and State, though, in their ranks, this alliance is greatly weakening. Presbyterian Scotland, being further from Rome than are Germany and England, and being a poorer and rougher and less inviting country, and inhabited by a more independent people, suffered from papal interference less than Germany and England. It is not for the lack of sense that the Scotch are predestinarians, for they are noted as the most common-sense and largest-brained people in Europe.

Christian predestinarianism far surpasses Arminianism in its moral results, as history abundantly demonstrates, and as may be seen by comparing the Waldenses with the other Italians, the Huguenots with the other French, the Jansenists with the Jesuits, the Puritans with they Cavaliers, and the Scotch with other Europeans. Predestinarianism is highly promotive of both civil and religious liberty. It represents God as absolute and supreme, and makes all men equal before Him. It develops the power of self-government and a manly spirit of independence, which fears no man, though seated on a throne, because it fears God, the only real sovereign. Its church-constitutions are popular (either Presbyterian or Independent); and its civil governments are representative or republican.

Especially for about a hundred years now has scriptural predestinarianism been undermined, in Europe and America, by professedly religions and by irreligious rationalism, and by infidelity and materialism —by a denial of the fundamental Protestant, Baptist and Bible doctrine of sin and grace, of redemption and justification; by a return to Pelagianism, pharisaism, and pseudo-scientific paganism, so that, if we except some Presbyterians and some Baptists, it would be hard to find any one on earth today believing this old scriptural doctrine; and, in consequence of this almost total departure of true faith from the earth, an equally universal Epicurean laxity of morals prevails. Honesty, the basis of all high character, #Lu 8:15 sincerity, straightforwardness in word and deed, has almost entirely forsaken the human race; simultaneous or successive polygamy is rampant; and crime of every species abounds in the world to an alarming extent, even as Paul predicted that, in the last days, perilous times should come, that men would wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived, lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, heady, high minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God. #2Ti 3:1-4 What increases a thousandfold the darkness of the picture is the Apostle’s concluding characterization of the apostate race —HAVING A FORM OF GODLINESS BUT DENYING THE POWER THEREOF. #2Ti 3:5

This nineteenth century of ours is, above every other century of the Christian era, the century of religious pride and of religious profession. Taking its stand upon the highest Himalayan peak of Pharisaism, it unblushingly declares that all the previous centuries, except perhaps its own nearest kin, the latter half of the eighteenth century, were, comparatively, both in a material and in a religious point of view, know-nothings and do-nothings; that its wise and mighty self has not only civilized the world, but devised and created means and machinery for the rapid evangelization of the entire human race; that, while up to the year 1800 there were then only two hundred millions of Christians in the world, even during the first eighty years of this one century alone, two hundred and ten millions —more than as many again —have been added, making the number now four hundred and ten millions; that just three things are now needed, more prayers, more tears, and more money; that, in the last twenty years, the rapidity of Christianization has increased in a fourfold ratio, so that, at the same rate, in one hundred years more all the world will be converted to God. Let it be ineradically impressed upon every reflecting mind that the increase of crime has run parallel with the increase of religious profession, at least in the United States. It is especially during the past thirty-five years that crime has so greatly increased.

Now this wonderful “evangelistic” movement is said to have been inaugurated, in the home field, by the itinerancies of the Methodists, the Wesleys and Whitefield, about the middle of the last century, and, in foreign lands, by the labors of a few English Baptists at Kettering, England, in 1792. The original conception of modern evangelization, it seems, is mainly due to John Wesley, the father and standard of Methodism, and to Andrew Fuller, the reformer and standard of nineteenth century, or Fullerite, or “Missionary” Baptists.

The inconsistencies of Mr. Wesley’s system are well illustrated by the inconsistencies of his life. While first genuinely converted, as he himself says, by the writings of Martin Luther, the most predestinarian of predestinarians, he came to be the most bitter enemy of predestinarianism, denouncing it as a horrible and detestable doctrine that represented God as worse than the devil, more false, more cruel, and more unjust. And yet Mr. Wesley’s funeral sermon on George Whitefield, the extraordinary predestinarian preacher, commends the latter in the highest terms as “an eminent servant of God, who, in the business of salvation, put Christ as high as possible and man as low as possible, and who brought a larger number of sinners from darkness to light than any other man.” In the application of human wisdom to the organization of a religious society, John Wesley was, as commonly remarked, more like Ignatius Loyola than any other man; he conformed the organization of Methodism more to that of Romanism than that of any other Protestant body; and, accordingly, in nominal numerical success, he has made his society the most powerful rival of Rome. By his famous “Deed of Declaration to the Legal Hundred,” “the Magna Charta of Methodism” (made in 1784, when he was eighty-one years of age), bequeathing the property and government of all his chapels in the United Kingdom to a hundred of his traveling preachers and their successors, on condition that they should accept as their basis of doctrine his Notes on the New Testament and the four volumes of his sermons published in or before A. D. 1771, he surpassed even the worldly wisdom of Catholicism, and made himself not only the infallible but the eternal pope of his society. So his Twenty-five Articles of Religion are declared, in the Methodist Book of Discipline, to be unalterable. This makes Wesley the last and greatest authoritative teacher of the human race, and places him above Christ and His Apostles, as we are required to look through the medium of Wesley at all the Divine teaching, and to accept forever his interpretation of the doctrine and precepts of the Bible. How can any of the dear children of God be willing thus to substitute the headship of a sinful and fallible mortal for the headship of Christ? See #Mt 23:8-12.

As established by Ludwig Keller, the present royal archivist at Munster, in his thorough and authoritative work on “The Reformation and the Older Reforming Parties Exhibited in their Connection,” published at Leipzig in 1885, the evangelical Anti-Catholic Christians from the eleventh to the sixteenth centuries, known as Petrobrusians, Henricians, Waldenses, Pikards, Beghards, Beguins, Spirituales, Sabbati, Insabbati, Apostolic Brethren, Poor men in Christ, Friends of God, Mystics and Bohemians, were, in the darkness of the Dark Ages, Arminians. They exalted the Scriptures above all human books, and accepted the doctrine of justification by faith; but they earnestly insisted on the freedom of man’s will to accept or reject the provisions of Divine grace, and emphasized the necessity of imitating Christ in His life of self-denial. The Mennonites of the sixteenth century were also Arminians; but they strenuously maintained the spirituality of the church of Christ, and the necessity of strict Church discipline, and they suffered great persecutions for conscience’ sake.

The earliest Confession of Faith denominated Baptist was published in Switzerland in 1527. While affirming the spirituality of the membership and ordinances of the church, and the unworldliness and the purity of her discipline, it makes no direct statement in regard to the doctrine of grace, though the phraseology of the document seems Arminian. In 1609 an Arminian Baptist "Church" was formed at Amsterdam, Holland, of refugees from persecution in England, and in 1611 they published an Arminian Confession of Faith. In 1633 the first Particular or Predestinarian Baptist Church was formed in London, and in 1639 another; and in 1644 there were seven of these churches in London, and they then published a predestinarian Confession of Faith. In 1656 sixteen churches in Somerset and the adjoining counties published a similar Confession. In 1677 and in 1688, and again in 1689, was published the fullest and most esteemed Baptist Confession of Faith, -in 1689 the ministers and messengers of above a hundred churches in England and Wales meeting in London for that purpose, and, as they say in their prologue, "denying Arminianism." This Confession is published in this volume, and adopts, on the subject of predestination, the strong language of the Westminster (the most esteemed Presbyterian) Confession. The great majority of Baptists in England and America (those called the Particular Baptists in England, and those called Regular or Calvinistic or "Missionary" Baptists in America) still profess to adhere to this old London Confession. Thus from 1523 to 1633 it seems that those called Baptists, so far as we can learn, favored Arminian views, and from 1633 to the present time (1886) the most of those called Baptists have professed to be Predestinarians; as, from 1727 to 1754, the members of the churches in the bounds of what was in 1765 called the Kehukee Association, were General or Arminian Baptists, and were not at all strict in discipline. As Whitefield says, "We are all Arminians by nature." And so, quite often, babes in Christ retain for a while something of this carnal feeling, and have to be fed upon milk, and not, like men, upon strong meat. But "Jesus Christ," says the inspired penman, is "the same yesterday, and today, and forever; and it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace, and not carried about with divers and strange doctrines". #Heb 13:8,9 Still it takes time for even the plants of our heavenly Father thus to grow and be established; and with improper food, administered by unqualified attendants, the plants may remain stunted and feeble for many years. Besides, the growth of plants depends greatly upon the influences of air and light; and so growth in grace depends greatly upon the in-breathing and illumination of the Holy Spirit. If these blessed influences be withheld, the children of God may long remain but babes. These considerations, which should be forcibly impressed upon us by early Baptist history, give us reason to hope that there are many of the dear children of God who have not yet been led to identify themselves with His visible church; who as yet see men as it were trees walking; who, though cleansed by the atoning blood of Jesus, still do not properly give glory to God. #Mar 8:22-25 Luk 17:11-19 Another instructive lesson to be derived from early Baptist history is that all human authority is only fallible and imperfect; and our faith should, therefore, be entirely based upon the infallible Scriptures of inspired truth. We are to call no man on earth our spiritual father or master, but to acknowledge Christ as our only Master. #Mt 23:8-10 Taking the Bible only for their standard, our Baptist predecessors were gradually led from Arminianism to the doctrine of salvation by grace alone; and the same Divine guidance has led the Bible Baptists of today to abandon some unscriptural practices of some former Baptists, such as open communion and affiliation with unbaptized professors of religion, the formation of religions societies based upon money for the evangelization of the world, the substitution of human education for the call and qualification of the Holy Spirit as a preparation for the gospel ministry, having ruling Elders as distinguished from teaching Elders, the laying on of hands upon all believers, shaking hands while singing, inviting mourners to the anxious bench, etc. These unscriptural practices were, many of them, but rarely and occasionally adopted by any Baptists before the present century. Into a few of them even the old Kehukee Association was at times, to a very small extent, inveigled between the years 1803 and 1827. But, as the Scriptures do not, by preceptor example, authorize any of these practices, the child of God, who disregards human tradition and looks only to the written word of God for guidance, cannot indorse, much less idolize, any of these modern innovations. Believing, as he does, in the sovereignty of God’s grace, in the perfection of Christ’s redemption, in the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit, and in the freeness and fullness of God’s salvation towards all who shall be saved, he cannot for a moment suppose that any human means have ever sent, or will ever send, a single soul to glory. Others may fall down before these idols; but, as for him and his spiritual kindred, they fear the fiery furnace heated seven times hotter than usual less than they fear and reverence the God of their salvation, and Him only will they worship.

The eminently pious and learned Baptist ministers, John Skepp (who died 1721), John Brine (who died 1765), and John Gill (who died 1771) —the latter the most learned man that has ever borne the name of Baptist —entertained precisely the same views of the sovereignty and efficacy of Divine grace as are held by the Bible Baptists of today. Though they proclaimed to sinners that they were in danger and on the high road to perdition, they did not call upon all men, whether spiritually concerned or not, to repent and believe the gospel. They dwelt much on the Divine purposes, and on the Bible fact that salvation is of the Lord. This method of preaching and writing was, after their departure, stigmatized as “selfish, hardening, refrigerant, soporific, hyper-Calvinistic, Antinomian.” “Under such instruction,” it is said, “the churches became indifferent to the means of grace, could not engage in efforts for the conversion of souls; they were satisfied with preservation, and did not seek extension, and so the cause declined. Backsliding and coldness affected all religious communities in England. But for the revivalistic labors of Whitefield and the Wesleys, evangelical truth would have well-nigh died out. The effects of their ministry were felt by all denominations.” Mr. Andrew Fuller is claimed to have been the “sledge-hammer” that beat Methodistic fervor into the cold Baptists, and roused both Baptists and Protestants to “send the gospel into heathen lands.”

Mr. Fuller is described by his adherents as a clear, plain, practical, judicious, powerful, profound theologian -"the Franklin of theology." As he is honestly admitted by learned "DD’s" and "LLD’s" among modern Baptists to be their "standard," it is eminently proper for us to examine, at least briefly, his life and labors. He was born in 1754 and died in 1815. His parents were poor, and he had only the barest rudiments of an English education; yet the Fullerite or New School Baptists, notwithstanding the case of Mr. Fuller, and the fact that all real scholars admit that every one of the Apostles except Paul was unlearned, consider a fine classical education almost indispensable for a successful preacher, and, in the number of their theological colleges in the United States (21), they surpass all the Protestants, and equal the Roman Catholics. From his fourteenth to his sixteenth year Mr. F. says that he had two or three spurious conversions, and, in his sixteenth year, a genuine conversion; and this saving conversion of one called "the grandest champion of Christianity," took place, be it noted, during the universal prevalence of hyper-Calvinistic views among the Baptists -views which he devoted the most of his life to denouncing as not only "false Calvinism," but "false religion," "more dangerous than irreligion." But for the hyper-Calvinism in his own heart, making him feel that he needed some previous qualification to come to Christ, he reckons that he might have found rest sooner than he did; but Divine drawings enabled him to overleap this barrier. He confesses that he was "saved by mere grace, in spite of himself, by free grace from first to last."  He declared that he "never had any predilection for Arminianism, which appeared to him to ascribe the difference between one sinner and another, not to the grace of God, but to the good improvement made of grace given us in common with others, and that his zeal for the doctrine of grace increased with his years;" and his dying declarations are that "all he had done needed forgiveness; that he trusted alone in sovereign grace and mercy; that he was a poor guilty creature, but Christ was an almighty Savior; that the doctrine of grace was all his salvation and all his desire; that he had no other hope than from salvation by mere sovereign efficacious grace, through the atonement of his Lord and Savior; that with this hope he could go into eternity with composure." The preacher of his funeral said that "he died a penitent sinner at the foot of the cross." In his writings, Mr. Fuller admits that "the Scriptures clearly ascribe both repentance and faith to Divine influence;" and he professes himself to be a strict Calvinist or predestinarian. Notwithstanding this admission and profession, and his attributing, both in conversion and in death, all his salvation to the mere, free, sovereign, efficacious grace of God, he maintains that the prophets, and Christ, and His Apostles, gave the most unlimited invitations to unconverted hearers of the gospel, and so should all gospel ministers do; that the obligations of men to repentance and faith are universal; that man’s inability is not proper or physical, but only figurative or moral; that man is able to comply with all that God requires at his hand; that all his misery arises from his voluntary abuse of mercy, and his willful rebellion against God; that it is not a want of ability, but of inclination, that proves his ruin; that men have the same power, strictly speaking, before they are wrought upon by the Holy Spirit as after, and before conversion, as after; that the work of the Spirit endows us with no new rational powers, nor any powers that are necessary to moral agency." He allows that "these principles may be inconsistent with the doctrines of grace," but he maintains that "both are scriptural and therefore true" -that "we must receive both the general precepts and invitations of Scripture, and the declarations of salvation, as being a fruit of electing love." Though in one article admitting that the evidence of our inter hunger, thirst, labor, heavy laden, etc., do not denote spiritual desires, and do not mark out the persons who are entitled to come to Christ." In accordance with this Fullerite principle, I myself heard the most learned Fullerite in North Carolina declare, in preaching upon #Isa 55:1, that the address of the prophet applied to every human being, for that all men thirst after something. While at times apparently delighting to stigmatize "hyper-Calvinism" as "Antinomianism," and inconsistent with genuine conversion, Mr. Fuller admits that some adherents of this system may have true religion; and, in another article, he declares that all men by nature are real Antinomians, for Paul says that the carnal (or unrenewed) mind is enmity against God, not subject to His law, neither indeed can be. William Huntington, S. S. (sinner saved), is regarded by many genuine Baptists in England and America as one of the most spiritual writers of the present century; but Mr. F. says that he never saw any marks of genuine religion in his writings. I am glad to see that, in one place, Mr. Fuller, the standard of the New School Baptists in England and the United States, declares that he "never imagined himself infallible."  In this candid statement all Bible Baptists will heartily agree with him, especially after having read the perfectly fair exhibition of his inconsistencies just given. The Bible, however, such Baptists do believe to be infallible, and therefore not to contain any pair of Mr. Fuller’s inconsistencies, as truth cannot be inconsistent with itself: Many of Mr. Fuller’s expressions, in regard to the ability and power of the unrenewed mind, go far beyond the Arminianism of James Arminius, John Wesley and Richard Watson, who declare that the unrenewed will and all the other faculties of the unrenewed mind are dead in trespasses and sins. Paul declares that "the carnal mind cannot be subject to the law of God;" that "the natural man cannot know the things of the Spirit of God;" and Christ declares that "the world cannot receive the Spirit of truth;" and that "no man can come to Him except the Father draw Him." What then shall we think of Mr. Fuller’s fine-spun metaphysics about unrenewed human ability? How can any believer in the Scriptures believe a word of it? It is the superficial declaration of the Roman Catholic Council of Trent that Divine commands necessarily imply human ability -just as though man had never fallen. Though man has fallen and become unable to obey the commandments of God, the nature and law and requirements of God are unchanged and unchangeable. The gospel addresses of the Scriptures are addressed, we believe, to gospel characters -to those persons who have spiritual life, hearing, needs and appetites. These limitations are either directly expressed or implied by the circumstances. Even the letter of the word, where there is any fullness of narration, and the dictates of common sense teach this important fact. Inspired men could, far better than we, read the hearts of those whom they addressed; and they addressed hearers of different characters, and therefore used sometimes the imperative and sometimes the indicative mood. God’s under-shepherds are directed, not to create, but to tend the flock. I cannot conceive what benefit can be supposed by a believer in sovereign and efficacious grace to be derived from universally and untruthfully extending the comforting spiritual addresses of the gospel to those declared in the Scriptures to be dead in trespasses and sins -Christ expressly forbids that pearls should be cast before swine. #Mt 7:6 Unless the Spirit of God first come and impart Divine life and light to the hearer, such addresses will be forever and totally vain. The imperative mood has no more power than the indicative mood, in the mouth of a preacher, to awaken the dead to life. No language or labor of man, and no fact in creation or providence, independently of the Divine Spirit, has the slightest efficacy to take away the sinner’s heart of stone and give him a heart of flesh. I do not deny that persuasion that some of his hearers are spiritually alive, and that he may not then properly address them in the imperative mood.

William Cathcart, in his recently published “Baptist Encyclopedia,” says that Mr. John Gill “knew more of the Bible than any one else with whose writings he is acquainted; that he was a man of great humility, and one of the purest men that ever lived; that, in his ‘Body of Divinity,’ the grand old doctrines of grace, taken unadulterated from the Divine fountain, presented in the phraseology and with the illustrations of an intellectual giant, and commended by a wealth of sanctified Biblical learning only once in several ages permitted to mortals, sweep all opposition before them, and leave no place for the blighted harvests, the seed of which was planted by James Arminius in modern times. In this work, eternal and personal election to a holy life, particular redemption from all guilt, resistless grace in regeneration, final preservation from sin and the wicked one, till the believer enters , and the other doctrines of the Christian system, are expounded and defended by one of the greatest teachers in Israel ever called to the work of instruction by the Spirit of Jehovah.” He adds that Mr. Gill’s “commentary is the most valuable exposition of the Old and New Testaments ever published.”

Well, after the bones of this wonderfully gifted servant of God had been laid safely in the grave (in 1771), Mr. Andrew Fuller began to ponder upon the expediency of making a change in Baptist tactics, and offering salvation freely to all sinners without distinction. After four years’ rumination his views on this subject became entirely changed, and he wrote them in an essay entitled “The Gospel Worthy of All Acceptation,” which he did not venture to publish, however, till 1782, seven years after it had been written. This publication involved him in a bitter controversy of twenty years with some of his Baptist brethren, including Mr. Abraham Booth, a London Baptist minister, and the learned and able author of that admirable work, “The Reign of Grace;” but it is stated that “the ability and force of Mr. Fuller’s pamphlet ultimately prevailed,” and his views were adopted by the majority of those professing the Baptist name. These views, Mr. Fuller says, were different from those held by the Baptists during the most of the eighteenth century, but were like those entertained by Bunyan and the other old Baptist writers of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. But it should be remembered that Bunyan, though we cannot doubt a child of God, yet did not have perfect light on all subjects, and was an open communionist, and at times did not seem very well established in doctrine; and, so far as we know, all calling themselves Baptists in the sixteenth and in the early part of the seventeenth century were Arminians, whose example furnishes a poor precedent for the imitation of Bible Baptists. The actual result of Mr. Fuller’s methods has been, not to effectuate the eternal salvation of a single sinner (for Christ is the only and complete Savior of His people), but to increase largely the number of those professing, while unhappily not possessing, true religion.

In 1784 Mr. Andrew Fuller read a pamphlet on the importance of general union in prayer for the revival of true religion, written by Jonathan Edwards, President of the College of New Jersey; and in the same year he read a poem by John Scott on the cruelties of the English in the East Indies. In this manner he was led to recommend prayer meetings the first Monday evening of every month for the extension of the gospel, and to urge the formation of a moneyed religious society for sending a mission to India. The first Baptist Missionary Society was thus formed at Kettering, England, Oct. 2, 1792, and the first collection for its treasury, amounting to £13, 2s. and 6d., was taken up. Mr. Fuller was chosen and remained its secretary till his death, traveling almost continually through the British Isles, and pleading for the mission cause, and charging the society nothing for his services. He makes the following remarkable statement in his writings: “Our undertaking to India really appeared to me, on its commencement, to be somewhat like a few men who were deliberating about the importance of penetrating into a deep mine which had never before been explored. We had no one to guide us; and, while we were thus deliberating, Carey, as it were, said: ‘Well, I will go down if you will hold the rope.’ But before he went down he, as it seemed to me, took an oath from each of us at the mouth of the pit to this effect, that, while we lived we should never let go the rope. You understand me. There was great responsibility attached to us who began the business.” All this looks far more like faith in men and in money than faith in God. Instead of approving, the Scriptures utterly condemn all confidence in the flesh. Can it be possible that such fleshly confidence as that to which Mr. Fuller makes such full and candid confession was the source of modern Baptist and Protestant missions? If his language has any meaning, it would seem so. Again: Mr. Fuller makes the astonishing statement that his own “church was in a famished condition of spiritual life, and found no salvation except in becoming identified with mission, work”! Alas that the mission idol should be substituted for Christ!

This remark of Andrew Fuller is paralleled by a remark of the Methodist “Bishop,” George F. Pierces of Georgia, substantially as follows; “the question is —not so much how can the heathen be saved unless we send them the gospel, but —how can we ourselves be saved unless we send them the gospel?” If the essence of this remark is not idolatry, I confess that I do not understand the meaning of the term. How different is this declaration from the preaching of the Apostle Peter in #Ac 4:10-12!

The Apostles were commanded by Christ to “go into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” Scripture prophecy makes it certain that, in God’s own best time, the Apostles, by their writings, will go into all the world, and a heavenly kingdom will take the place of all earthly kingdoms. #Mt 24:14 Re 11:15 The Apostles must have understood Christ’s commandment to them better than subsequent uninspired men have understood it; but there is no clear Bible evidence, and, as admitted by all scholars, no other reliable evidence that the Apostles personally preached the gospel outside of the Roman Empire. By the dissemination of the Greek language and civilization, and by the multiplication of the facilities for travel under the mighty dominion of Rome, the providence of God had gradually prepared the way for the apostolic preaching of the gospel, at the same time that the Spirit of God lead prepared a people to hear and be benefited by such preaching. No doubt the genuine future evangelization of the world will take place in a similar way. Not by such nineteenth-century machinery as unscriptural alliances, upon a money basis, of the world and the nominal “Church,” but by the providential assemblage of people from all nations at Jerusalem to hear the preaching of the Apostles, by persecution, by visions of the day and the night, by special communications of the Holy Spirit forbidding the Apostles to go in certain directions and commanding them to go in others, and by the Holy Spirit preceding and accompanying the Apostles, the gospel was preached throughout the Roman Empire. And during the early succeeding centuries, by social and commercial intercourse, by persecution, by conquest, by captivity, by slavery, by enlistment in the Roman armies, the inscrutable wisdom of God, which is able to overrule evil for good and make the wrath of man praise Him, diffused the light of saving truth, to some extent, among the barbarian nations dwelling on the borders of the Roman Empire. And during the Dark Ages the Cathari, the Patarenes, the Paulicians, the Albigenses, and the Waldenses, being persecuted in one country, fled to another, as commanded by Christ, and went in every direction preaching the word. #Mt 10:23 Ac 8:1-4 And in modern times the Baptists have suffered the most religious persecution, and have been driven from country to country, preaching the gospel.

The Roman Catholic Popes, in order to aggrandize themselves, sent missionaries from time to time to convert various tribes to their own heathenish superstitions, trustworthy historians affirming that many of these heathen tribes were far more moral than the Catholics themselves. The most zealous and “successful” foreign missionaries of the pope hove been the three monastic orders of Franciscans, Dominicans and Jesuits. The first two orders originated in the thirteenth, and the last in the sixteenth century. Vowing perpetual poverty, chastity and obedience (to the General of the Order, or to the pope), these powerful organizations, equaling the ancient proselyting Pharisees, and utterly eclipsing all subsequent Protestant societies in zeal and apparent sincerity, have in the last six centuries victimized hundreds of millions of the human race, exterminating, by means of the Inquisition, millions of so-called heretics at home, and Catholicizing, by means of compromises with paganism, countless multitudes of poor deluded heathens in foreign lands. Of these three monastic orders, the Jesuitical has been the most zealous and “successful.” Founded in 1534 to check and overbalance the Catholic losses by Protestantism, suppressed, because of their intolerable abominations, in 1773, by the pope, Clement XIV., who died by poison in 1774, and restored by Pope Pius VII. in 1814, this nefarious order, the most powerful and the most missionary institution that ever existed on earth, has thoroughly undermined all the foundations of human morality, and, in a word, made Jesuitism equivalent to diabolism. The Protestant Reformers, Luther and Calvin, never thought of sending missionaries to the heathen, Luther denouncing with great emphasis the worldly methods of prosecuting missions; and Calvin, in his comment on the final commandment of Christ to His Apostles, #Mt 28:19 saying nothing whatever of missions to the heathen. It is, therefore, admitted in the article on “Missions” in the second volume of the Schaff-Herzog “Encyclopaedia of Religious Knowledge,” published in 1883, that “A CHURCH MAY HAVE A VIGOROUS SPIRITUAL LIFE, AND YET NOT PROSECUTE MISSIONARY ACTIVITY; AND A CHURCH MAY BE ACTIVE IN MISSIONARY OPERATIONS, AND YET BE SPIRITUALLY DEAD.”

It has now been about ninety-four years since the grand new impetus given to Protestant missions by the organization at Kettering, England, in 1792, of the first Baptist Society for Propagating the Gospel amongst the Heathens; and, to show what is claimed to be the present result of Baptist and Protestant Missions, I will give some remarkable statements of a Fullerite Baptist, Mr. W. F. Bainbridge, who for ten years was pastor of the large “Missionary” Baptist “Church” at Providence, Rhode Island, and who, with his wife and son, and “provided with cordial credentials from Secretaries of all the leading Foreign Missionary Societies of America,” during the years 1879-1881 made a “Universal Survey” of the foreign mission-field, traveling 50,000 miles, and visiting more than a thousand missionaries, and upon his return published a book entitled “Around the World Tour of Christian Missions.” It is declared by leading, able and most extensively circulated religious periodicals of different denominations in the United States that “no work on this subject so complete and reliable has ever before been published in America or Europe;” that “the information contained in it is full, fresh and timely;” and that “it is unquestionably the most valuable contribution thus far made to the standard literature of Christian Missions.” I would be glad if every Old School Baptist had a copy of this book.

It may be had for two dollars per copy by mail, postage prepaid, from the publishers, D. Lothrop & Co., Boston, Mass. It is an invaluable treasury of recent facts in regard to Modern Missions. {2}

After having spied out the vast new “promise lands,” Mr. Bainbridge brings back, as he says, “a joyful Caleb report,” declaring that “the whole world is becoming Christian with bewildering rapidity,” and that during the past generation this rapidity has wonderfully increased; and he anticipates that the coming century will witness a grand progress towards “the Millennium, a decided check to the evil of intemperance, an overwhelming advance upon scientific unbelief, and the attainment of a far higher spiritual life among the myriad ranks of the Universal Church.” And yet the book contains many statements, as we shall show, hard to reconcile with these strong declarations and bright anticipations.

Mr. Bainbridge regards Greek and Roman Catholics as benighted idolaters, and admits that Protestants (including Baptists) constitute but one-twelfth of the human race; he does not state what very small proportion of Protestants give any credible evidence of their genuine Christianity. Mr. B. says that more than two-thirds of the Christian Church are practically anti-mission, contributing neither prayers nor money to the support of missions, and he would at times almost despair of Christianity but for evidence that this indifference is due chiefly to want of information. 

This statement is in accordance with the following tract, sent me by Mr. H. A. Tupper, of Richmond, Secretary of the Board of Southern Baptist Foreign Missions:

Missionary Tracts No. 18.

ANTI-MISSIONARIES.

Have we any such among us? Yes, they are numerous and almost everywhere to be found. The phrase has been applied to a certain class of Baptists as peculiarly appropriate. But are they not to be recognized elsewhere? The Presbyterians complain that a large proportion of their members give nothing to foreign missions, and so with respect to other religionists. These may properly be ranked among the anti-missionary people. This class is swelled in number if we look into our own so-called Missionary Baptist Churches.

Can this be true? Have we in our churches anti-missionaries? Let us see. Jesus said, ‘He that is not with me is against me.’ ‘He that gathereth not with me, scattereth abroad.’ If then, in our churches any are found who give nothing to aid in the spread of gospel truth, are they not thus far anti, or against Christ, in His expressed will, ‘that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem?’ Are not all such anti-missionaries? Such are found, and found in large numbers. Among these are some who would be shocked if classed with the anti-mission party. They sometimes pray ‘that the earth may be filled with the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.’ They are missionary in name, but in reality are anti-missionaries. They feel no special interest in the spread of the gospel, and make no sacrifice for this purpose.

Brethren, let us be consistent. If we believe that the preaching of the cross is according to the will of God —that it is the wisdom of God, and the power of God unto salvation, let us spare no means in themselves appropriate, that in regions beyond the glad tidings may be sounded out.”

We are told that more than half of the so-called “Missionary Baptist Churches” in North Carolina do not contribute a cent to Foreign Missions.

The Congregationalists of the United States contribute about a dollar and twenty-five cents annually per member for Foreign Missions; the Presbyterians about eighty-five cents; the Episcopalians about fifty cents; the Northern Baptists about thirty cents; the Northern Methodists about seventeen cents;” and the Southern Methodists about ten cents. We learn from other (official) sources that the Southern Baptists contribute less than three cents per member annually for Foreign Missions; the white Baptists of the South give only ten cents per member, which is only one-twentieth of what the Burmese in India give. We also learn from recent and authoritative estimates that, while the one hundred million Greek Catholics have no Foreign Missions, and the one hundred and ninety million Roman Catholics now contribute only a million and a half dollars (or less than a cent apiece annually) to this object, the one hundred and twenty million Protestants (including Baptists) contribute but seven and a half million dollars (or about six cents apiece annually) to Foreign Missions. The average annual contribution of all the advocates of Foreign Missions is less than three cents apiece. This seems to prove that the professedly Christian world has either very little faith in Foreign Mission work, or else very little love for the souls of the poor heathens.

But then the chief need of missions, says Mr. B., is prayer. He declares that “one man, with not a dollar in his pocket, afire with the love of souls, and backed by the united importunate prayers of God’s people, will do more in the destitute regions of America, Asia or Africa than a thousand missionaries with overflowing treasuries, but without power, Divine power which God has ordained as answer to prayer.” And, again, he says: “Better the car of Zion stand still a thousand years than that the Christian Church forget her absolute dependence upon her Lord, and feel that the world can be Christianized by money and men. The question of missions today is a prayer question. The grand duty of the Christian Church of the present is to get to praying, praying in secret, praying together.” It would thus seem that those laboring for foreign missions either are not much given to prayer, or else have but little faith in the prayers which they say.

 

As for Paul, Mr. B. thinks that he made two great mistakes, first, in not getting married, and, secondly, in working for his own support. The lukewarmness and scandals and heresies that arose in his and other churches, soon after his departure, prove, Mr. B. thinks, that it would have been “better for Paul and the other early founders to have arranged contributions from the churches sufficient, not only for the poor, but to enable their ministry and missionaries to give their undivided attention to the more thorough instruction and more potent leadership of their people,” —as though Paul’s heavenly-mindedness in preferring to serve God rather than a wife, and his disinterestedness in preaching the gospel at his own charges, were of no valve for his own and future generations, and as though the infinitely wise Spirit of God had nothing to do with the matter. “The well-meant and pious, but headstrong and impracticable, effort of Christians to apply either Paul’s exceptional example or Christ’s exceptional directions to the twelve and the seventy,” says Mr. B., “is today one of the greatest embarrassments to be met on both the home and foreign mission fields!” So much the worse then for these so called “mission-fields” if the New Testament “embarrasses” them!

 

Christ, “a greater than Paul,” says Mr. B., “whose life was much more intended for our example, left the carpenter’s bench, when He commenced His special evangelistic labors, and subsisted upon the hospitality and contributions of His friends.” The truth is that Christ, who worked all His life in a carpenter shop before His ministry, during His ministry was continually laboring, not only teaching in public and private, walking, thirsty and hungered and wearied, long miles of hot dusty roads, and spending whole nights upon the cold mountains in prayer, but performing “mighty works,” feeding vast multitudes, healing the blind, the deaf, the dumb, the fevered, the paralytic, the leprous, the insane, casting out devils, raising the dead, and thus, by deed as well as word, preaching the gospel to the poor.

 

Prof. Max Muller, in his recent lectures on India, says that the Hindus surpass, in many respects, some people who make much greater pretensions to civilization; that they are, in general, mild, gentle, kind, affectionate, virtuous, forgiving, truthful and conscientious. And Mr. Bainbridge represents that he found the heathens less roguish than professed Christians; that, while he never lost a dollar’s worth of goods during his sojourn of a year and three-quarters in heathen lands, he was ashamed to say that the stealings out of his baggage in Europe in less than a year amounted to several hundred dollars. And yet he says that there was scarcely a night when the heathens could not have stolen something from him, but they did not, even when he was paying his heathen servants but twenty-five cents a day, and when no foreign consular power was near for intimidation in the interest of honesty. No wonder the Chinese think it expedient for them to establish missions in so-called Christian lands!

 

The Chinese have but little (except forced) respect for Great Britain, the richest and greatest “Christian” missionary power, which, by a two years’ war (1840-1842), for her own pecuniary profit, forced upon unwilling China the infamous opium trade, which is still continued, and “destroys annually millions of lives,” says Mr. B. “Never was responsibility for a great crime,” continues our author, “more surely fastened upon a nation than this, of cursing China with opium, upon enlightened, Christian England. The pleas in defense are about as shallow as any lawyer ever presented for his guilty client.” As is well known, Protestant England has for hundreds of years heavily oppressed and impoverished Catholic Ireland. During the last two or three hundred years England has been “the most warlike of nations,” and “her acquisition of foreign territory is without a parallel in the history of the human race. She bears rule over one-third of the surface of the globe and one-fourth of its population, her possessions abroad being sixty times larger than the parent State.” She is thus, of course, preeminently qualified to preach to the world the gospel of the Prince of Peace and Friend of the poor, who, while on earth, had not where to lay His head. In 1882 she illustrated her splendid Christian character by foreclosing her mortgage upon poor Mohammedan Egypt with cannon and bayonet. “Church” and State, be it remembered, are united in England. The small number of genuine Christians in England, who have more desire for the glory of God than for the glory of Britannia, feel no sympathy for her unchristian course. Great Britain has, Mr. B. thinks, “two or three times as many benevolent enterprises as America,” but he is “persuaded that the larger proportion of this giving is misdirected philanthropy.”

The ancient Roman government, under which the Apostles preached the gospel so safely and so effectually, was Pagan and inconceivably corrupt. It is the peculiar province and pleasure of God to bring good out of evil; and it is certainly possible that, the British Government, God-sent ministers may go forth and preach the gospel to a God-prepared people in foreign heathen lands. In many respects the nineteenth century resembles the first century more than any other. It is the acme of modern, as the first was of ancient, civilization; as was the first, so the nineteenth is an age of strong government, settled order, vast internal improvements, great facilities for trade and travel. And, as the Greek language had become almost universally known in the Roman Empire, so the English is becoming the universal language now throughout the civilized world. God works all things according to the counsel of His own will, and He has a wise purpose in all that He does; telegraphs, and railroads, and steamboats, and governments, and riches, and the hearts of men are His; and it may be that He designs an early and glorious advancement of His kingdom of grace —though, on the other hand, the present low condition of spiritual affairs in the world is far from indicating any such advancement, unless it be upon the, principle that the darkest hour immediately precedes the dawn, or that “at evening time,” in prophetic language, “it shall be light”. #Zec 14:7

Mr. Bainbridge conveys to us the painful information that professed Christians are disseminating materialism in Japan, universalism in China, and infidelity in India. In reference, especially, to the present religious condition of India, more will be said presently.

Mr. B. thinks that the reflex action of foreign missions on home Christianity has been eminently beneficial; that “but for foreign missions there would not be half as much spiritual power for the evangelizing work among our own populations, the churches would not be nearly as numerous, nor the Sunday schools so flourishing, nor the various home missions so enterprising and successful. Yes,” he exclaims, “we owe a debt of unspeakable gratitude to foreign missions for their benediction upon us at home.” Bible Baptists think that all our blessings come from the Most High, and that our gratitude is due, not to dead machines, but to the living God.

Foreign missionaries receive on an average, Mr. B. thinks, a thousand dollars per year —some getting considerably more than this. The average is about twice the average, he says, received by home ministers. The expenses, he tells us, are not, however, doubled in foreign lands, but the privations and hardships are greatly increased. Foreign missionaries have good residences and many household comforts. The missionary qualifications are high. They are thus set forth in the manual of the American Board for candidates: “An unimpaired physical constitution; good intellectual ability, well disciplined by education and, if possible, by practical experience; good sense, sound judgment of men and things; versatility, tact, adaptation to men of all classes and circumstances; sanctified common sense; a cheerful, hopeful spirit; ability to work pleasantly with others; persistent energy in the carrying out of plans once begun —all controlled by a single-hearted, self-sacrificing devotion to Christ and His cause.” No one of the Apostles was probably endowed with all these qualifications. Paul came the nearest, but he did not have an unimpaired physical constitution, #Ga 4:13,14 1Co 2:3 2Co 12:7-10 and could not, therefore, have passed a satisfactory examination before a modern Missionary Board; and all the other Apostles would have been rejected by such a Board for lack of literary education. It is really surprising, even in this tremendous century, that as many as about three thousand men, the number now in the field, should have been found with all these qualifications. Not content, however, with these requirements, this manual makes mention also of the advantage of oratorical gifts, of facility in acquiring a foreign language, of the necessity of a good character among acquaintances, and of special fitness shown in actual service for molding character. By a comparison with #1Ti 3:1-7 and #Tit 1:6-9, the great improvement in religion and in ministerial qualifications will be readily seen; many things have been “added,” and many have been “taken away”. #Re 22:18,19

India is admitted to be the most important and most vigorously cultivated Protestant mission field of today. It was the first foreign field selected and worked by Mr. Fuller’s society, and, therefore, has been the longest worked and ought to show the grandest results. “A tree is to be judged by its fruit, causes by their effects,” says Mr. Bainbridge. We accept this remark as being both reasonable and scriptural. “Missions are everywhere the mother of schools, and at least twelve thousand schools, with four hundred thousand pupils, owe their origin and support to missionary societies.” Mr. B. testifies that these schools in India teach science mainly, and that evangelization is a very subordinate object; and he says that out of fifty young men educated by many of these mission schools, all but two or three graduate as infidels and scoffers at all religion; that the literary demands of India are great and growing, and are “being met by vast quantities of vile native productions, and by enormous translations from European skepticism, rationalism, and materialism; that Hegel, Strauss, Renan, and even Paine, are names well known throughout India; that multitudes are familiar with Darwin’s development theory, with Comte’s positivism, and with the vagaries of Huxley, Tyndall, Spencer, Mill, and Emerson.” “The greatest need of Christian Missions in India,” he says, “is spiritual power. There is an immense amount of beautiful, strong, complicated machinery,” he adds, “but it is almost lifeless.” He compares the India missionary machinery to a great irrigating machine that he saw on the right bank of the Tigris, below Baghdad; it was of very fine construction, and appeared to be much needed on the adjoining plain, but it had no power, and its custodians seemed not to understand the secret of its use. This comparison, which Mr. B. makes of the finest modern missionary machinery to a dead, powerless irrigating machine, struck the mind of the present writer as exceedingly and unexpectedly candid, forcible and truthful. The Roman Catholics, says Mr. B., are, in various countries, imitating the wise Protestant methods of evangelization, but he fears that they have only the letter which killeth, the garment without the soul, and that their power for evil will only be increased thereby; and he believes that “Protestantism will find its great mission only rendered the more important, and that it may reach the hearts of men by being driven, through the new competition, away from the means and methods upon which it has so much relied, to Him who alone is Head of the Church, its light, its pattern, and its power!” If it should please the Lord to draw all who believe and trust in modern missions away from all creature dependence to Himself, the only true and living God, the only possible source of salvation, then undoubtedly great spiritual blessings would follow.

In the most recent, extensive, accurate and magnificent work that I have seen upon “The Earth and Its Inhabitants,” M. Elisee Reclus, the eminent French geographer, remarks (in his Asia, vol. iii., p. 411), “At present the Catholic and Protestant missionaries  (in India) are chiefly engaged amongst the poor, the low castes, and the wild tribes of the interior, but everywhere with indifferent success. The first converts fancied they would be received into the caste of their teachers; but being quickly disenchanted, and perceiving that ‘to become a Christian was to become a pariah,’ they mostly returned to the cults of their fathers. Although there are altogether about five thousand Protestant evangelists of all denominations, their flocks scarcely number half a million collectively. About half of these are centered in Madras, where they consist almost exclusively of Portuguese Catholics and Nestorians, who have gone over to the religion of their new political masters. Not more than one-sixth of all the proselytes belong to the middle and upper castes; and a large proportion are the so-called ‘rice Christians,’ converted during the famines to keep from starvation. In the seaports they are mistrusted by the traders, who prefer to employ natives that have preserved the religion of their forefathers.” Of what value is a profession of Christianity that makes men less honest? See #Lu 8:15,12:1 Mt 7:16 {3}

For the purpose of training missionaries for their work, the Mohammedans have, in the University of the Great Mosque of El Azar at Cairo, in Egypt, and in the eighty Medressehs at Bokhara,, in Turkistan (one of the latter having been founded in A. D. 1372), Theological Seminaries, to which 15,000 pupils resort from nearly all parts of Africa and Asia —three times as many pupils as all the pupils at all the Theological Seminaries, both Catholic and Protestant, in the United States. And, according to the most recent and authentic information, the Mohammedans are far surpassing both Protestants and Roman Catholics in zealous and successful proselytism throughout Asia and Africa; so that, in those great continents, the present appearance is that Islam will be the religion of the future. See Appletons’ Annual Cyclopaedia, New Series, volume iii., pp. 581-586; volume iv., p. 647; and volume vi., p. 445. —In the same Cyclopaedia, volume x. (1885), p. 169, we are told: “In China the  (Christian) missionaries have been generally treated with kindness, though their teachings are regarded with contemptuous indifference. The unsympathetic attitude of the Calvinistic missionaries toward what they regard as idolatrous ancestor-worship caused them to be regarded by the generality of the Chinese as the teachers of a repulsive and inhuman religion. The Jesuit and Lazarist friars, who dressed in the national garb and taught a kindlier religion, were more successful, and were often on the best of terms with the provincial authorities.” Hence it seems that the most successful so-­called Christian missionaries in China are those who corruptly blend Arminianism, Jesuitism and idolatry with a profession of Christianity, and thus please and attract a larger number of heathens into their folds.

 It is estimated that, of the two hundred and fifty million people in India, one million are Christians; and that, of the one thousand million called heathen in the world, two millions only are Christians. Mr. Bainbridge reckons the actual pecuniary cost of each home convert at $550, and of each foreign convert at $320 or less. Others calculate that each foreign conversion costs $1,000, but that each home conversion costs more.

A recent number of the New York “Examiner” (a publication which claims to be the leading “Missionary” Baptist paper of the world) says that, during the year 1884, it cost $592.03 to make a Pagan an Episcopalian; $248.14, a Congregationalist; $234.91, a Presbyterian; $117.91, a Methodist; $72.88, a Campbellite; and only $37.05, a Baptist; so that the average cost of Protestant conversions being $203.91, the conversions of Pagans into Baptists cost but one-sixth of the average.

In connection with such calculations, how deeply impressive the language of the Apostle Peter in the eighteenth and nineteenth verses of the first chapter of his first epistle!

The estimates of the time that it will take to convert the world vary from one hundred years (as predicted in a recent number of a New York newspaper) to two hundred thousand years (as mentioned in Prof. Max Muller’s Lecture on Missions, delivered in Westminster Abbey, December 3, 1873). The seventh verse of the first chapter of Acts is appropriate here. If the genuine conversion of the world to Christianity is left to the power and money of men to effect it, the time required, if the Scriptures be true, will be an infinity of years, and even then it will not be begun.

In his “Along the Lines at the Front,” Mr. Bainbridge says that the Baptist principles of immersion, a regenerated church membership, and an independent church polity, give their “missionaries” a great advantage over the Pedobaptist “missionaries;” and that “Canon” Liddon advised an Episcopalian “missionary” to “go back to the old apostolic mode of baptism in the case of all adult converts from heathenism;” and that “in both the Church of England chapels in Tokyo there are baptisteries.”

The learned Prof. Max Muller has very little confidence in what he calls “controversial missions.” “We know, each of us, but too well,” says he, “how little argument avails in theological discussions; how often it produces the very opposite result of what we expected; confirming rather than shaking opinions no less erroneous, no less indefensible, than many articles of the Mohammedan or Buddhist faith.” He has much more confidence in what he calls “the indirect influence of Christianity,” to be exercised by the daily life and conduct of Christians brought into contact with heathens. The gospel can be preached much more powerfully by the life than by the tongue; but the direct regeneration of the Holy Spirit is the only power that can make a Christian.

Mr. Bainbridge returns borne with “a greatly strengthened conviction that all the heathen religions are glittering and corrupt delusions; that the supreme need of the world is Christianity; and that the establishing and guiding wisdom of the modern missions of Protestantism is that from above.” The first two of these propositions are clearly true; the last proposition, after all that Mr. B. has told us (which agrees substantially with the information derived from other sources), is not so clearly true. There can be no doubt that the effect of modern missions (or Anglo-Saxon civilization) has been to educate, soften, civilize; the minds, manners and customs of a very small number of the foreign heathens; it is even possible that, in a much smaller number of instances, the morals of a few heathens have been, in some respects, improved. In regard to whether any of the foreign heathen have been genuinely converted to Christianity or not, while the evident spuriousness of numberless alleged home conversions leads us also to fear that the last state of multitudes of heathen “converts” is worse than the first, still none but the Divine Author of faith, who looks not upon the outward appearance, but upon the heart, can speak with certainty upon this subject. The Apostle Paul rejoiced #Php 1:15-18 that Christ was preached to the. heathens in Rome, even though from improper motives; and so would all true Bible Baptists rejoice if they had any satisfactory evidence to believe that Christ had indeed been preached and believed on among the foreign heathens. Though Paul took pleasure in all furtherance of the gospel, he could not approve the improper motives or methods or the doctrinal errors of either friends or foes; neither can Old School, Primitive or Bible Baptists approve of the Pelagian and Arminian errors and the humanly-devised, unscriptural, unspiritual, idolized practices of modern fashionable religionists, whether in home or in foreign lands. A gentleman who occupies the highest position in the “missionary” cause in the Southern States of the Union, declares, in a recent letter to the present writer, that he has always admired the Primitive Baptists for “their two basal principles —A GOD-CALLED MINISTRY, AND EVANGELIZATION BY NEW TESTAMENT CHURCHES.”

It is a demonstrable fact that Primitive Baptist Churches are nearer, in both doctrine and practice, than any others to the New Testament models —our full and critical examination of the apostolic church in the ninth chapter of this volume proves that important fact; and, if their ministry are indeed called of God, it is to be supposed that the unchangeable and ever-living Head of the church, by His indwelling Spirit, affords them all needful direction in their labors. The present writer can truly testify that the ministers of those stigmatized as Anti-Missionaries, though few in number, poor in purse, and destitute of classical training, like the Elders in the New Testament, are, so far as his own knowledge and belief extend, the most zealous and active and faithful scriptural home missionaries in the United States. Not trained in theological schools or courses, not sent out by any human authority, not furnished beforehand with ample funds, not making any charge for their services, they go forth like the twelve and the seventy, depending upon the faithfulness of the God of Israel, and, in their preaching tours, travel tens of thousands and hundreds of thousands of miles, speaking, in general, the unadulterated truth as it is in Jesus to all having ears to hear, wherever and whenever opportunity is afforded; and I have never heard from them any other testimony than that, when they returned, like the twelve and the seventy, they lacked nothing. The impressions upon their minds to leave their homes at certain times, and go in certain directions, are often proved to be of the Lord by the wonderful spiritual results of their journeys. Taking the oversight of the flock of God, not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind, neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock, they labor in the Divine cause without any stipulated salary; and the most of them, like Paul, reflect the unworldly disinterestedness of the chiefest of the Apostles by engaging in some secular employment in order to minister to their temporal necessities, and not be burdensome to their churches, many of which are small and poor. Those who give themselves wholly to the work of the ministry prove also the genuineness of their faith and their superiority to mercenary motives by setting no price for their services, by laboring faithfully and constantly in the cause of their heavenly Master, and by leaving the question of the support of themselves and families with Him. In nearly all our Southern churches the colored people still remain members, and thus many thousands of them continue to have the benefit of regular preaching by white as well as by colored ministers.

Such are the scriptural home {4} missions of the Old School, Primitive or Bible Baptists in the United States and the adjoining countries; and when God has, in any foreign heathen land or lands, a people prepared to hear the preaching of the gospel, He is abundantly able to send whom He will to perform the labor of love without money and without price, as in apostolic times. Every unregenerated human being is a heathen. What the heathen in both unchristian and in professedly Christian lands need is, not human money and means and methods and machinery, but a Pentecostal baptism of God’s Holy Spirit, convincing them of sin, of righteousness and of judgment, leading them to fear and tremble at the infinite terrors of the Sinai law, and then sweetly drawing them to Calvary, and forever melting their stony, obdurate hearts with a transforming view of the meek, lowly and lovely Lamb of God, bleeding, agonizing and dying upon the bitter cross for their sins and for their salvation. Thus only will the inborn enmity of the carnal mind against God be superseded by that heartfelt love of Him which is greater than hope and faith, and which is the fulfilling of the law. Thus only will the great spiritual wilderness of this world be converted into the blossoming and rejoicing garden of the Lord. Thus only will the of God be restored over all the earth with a transcendent, Divine and eternal glory never known in Eden, when God shall unceasingly dwell with men, and fully enlighten, comfort, hallow and bless them.

When this universal prevalence of the knowledge and glory of God on earth shall come, is unknown to mortals; but all God’s people know that God alone can bring it about, and that He will bring it about in His own best time and manner.

Says Elder P. D. Gold, in “Zion’s Landmark”

“Because we do not co-operate with the Missionary Baptists in their measures and methods of sending out their missionaries, they say we are opposed to preaching the gospel to the heathen.

“We do not believe that they preach the gospel here at home, nor do we believe that man can send the gospel to the heathen. If these people loved and preached the truth here at home we would feel more like fellowshipping them. People are not apt to act better out of sight than in sight. They deny the power of God here at home: nor do we suppose they preach any better away from home.

“When the Lord sends one to preach to the heathen, and by the Holy Ghost says, Separate me Paul and Barnabas for the work whereunto I have called them, then we can encourage such to go, and help them on their journey of a godly sort, by ministering to their necessities, and praying the Lord to bless and prosper their journey.

“We are not to receive any into our houses, nor bid them God speed, unless they bring the doctrine of Christ, which is not the doctrines of men nor devils.

 “Where are the heathen? Everywhere, both in this continent and the Eastern continent.

 “It is no evidence that a people are right because they are zealous in propagating their views. The Catholics, Mormons and Mohammedans are and were all active in spreading their gospel, as they call it, into all the world. Who could be more active than the ancient Pharisees, who compassed sea and land to make one proselyte? It was a command to the Apostles to go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature, and they did this. Jesus Himself sent them, and they literally obeyed the command. We do not read that Paul, Peter, James, John or Jude told any of the churches, or instructed Titus or Timothy, to go into all the world and preach as the Lord sent the twelve Apostles. But they were to preach the word. Jesus has all the power in Heaven and earth, and He sends laborers into His vineyard. We cannot prepare nor teach others to preach, nor send them to preach the gospel. The gospel is the power of God. We cannot carry that, but it can carry us and direct us when and where to go.

“The money, that sends the doctrines that the missionaries preach, forbids the conclusion it is the power of God that sends it. It is common for the advocates of modern missions to hold that unless the people contribute their money freely, thousands of souls for which Christ died will be lost. We do not believe that the church of Christ is redeemed with corruptible things, such as silver and gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb verily foreordained, but slain in these last times for you, who by Him do believe in God, who raised Him from the dead, and gave Him grace and glory, that your faith and hope might be in God.

“To misrepresent us, and say that we are opposed to preaching the gospel to the heathen because we do not believe the Missionaries as a denomination send the gospel anywhere (for what one has not got he cannot send off), is as absurd as to say that because man cannot raise the dead, therefore we are opposed to the resurrection of the dead; or that because man cannot save a dead sinner, therefore we are opposed to salvation.”

Says Elder Gilbert Beebe, in the “Signs of the Times:”

“The argument of Mission Baptists, as they are pleased to call themselves, is: These institutions, as auxiliaries to the church, or something nearly akin to them, have been of long standing with Baptists of former ages. Well, suppose this, though doubted, be admitted, cannot the other denominations adduce the same argument for their perversions of baptism? Cannot the Catholics show their invocation of saints, their purgatory and their triple-crowned pontiff, to be institutions and traditions of many centuries with as good a grace? But we do not admit the claim that missionary societies, as distinct organizations from the churches, with presidents, vice-presidents, directors, treasurers, collectors and executive boards, have been known, either in our country or in any other, for ages past. The cases which they have cited in England and Wales do not show that they were separate from their church organizations, or such missionism as we have and do repudiate and protest against. The self-styled Missionary Baptists make such remarks as these: ‘From the days of the Apostles to the present time, the true, legitimate Baptist Church has ever been a missionary body’ —‘the churches founded by Christ and the Apostles were missionary churches!’ If by missionary churches they mean only that these churches were, as churches, engaged in the dissemination of the gospel through the gifts which God bestowed upon the Apostles, evangelists, pastors and teachers which he himself raised up, called and qualified ‘for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,’ then we challenge them to show wherein we, the Old School Baptists of the present day, have or do differ from the primitive order. Without any missionary society or board outside of the organization of the church of God to guarantee a salary, without purse, scrip or two coats, the Old School Baptists have today more gospel preachers of this description in the field than all the professedly Missionary Baptists in the world can honestly claim. But if they mean to convey the impression that the churches organized by Christ patronized missionary societies outside of the church membership, composed of members admitted at a specified price, organized with presidents, vice-presidents, directors, and a multitude of salaried officers, to employ men, appoint them their field of labor, and pay them their wages, then we demand proof from the Scriptures that any such institutions were known or tolerated in the primitive churches. If the primitive churches founded by Christ and his Apostles were missionary churches, then so are the so-called Old School Baptists of the present time; for they occupy the same ground, observe the same order and ordinances, and refuse to practice or patronize any religious order other than such as are clearly authorized by the precepts and examples of Christ and his Apostles, according to the record of the New Testament. It matters not what were the practices of the Baptists of five hundred or a thousand years ago. We have the laws of Christ as given in the New Testament, for our role, and the Apostles of Christ as expounders of the laws of Christ to us. What they have bound on earth is bound in Heaven, and what they have loosed on earth is loosed in Heaven.

“When the Fullerite heresies had been introduced among the Baptists, and produced great discord and turmoil, some of the old veterans of the cross met at Black Rock, Maryland, in 1832, and published a solemn protest against all the newly introduced innovations upon our former faith and order, and made the rejection of the new departure a test of fellowship. To distinguish those who retained the apostolic doctrine from those who departed from it, we consented to be known by a name which had been given us by our opponents, viz., Old School Baptists. This appellation we agreed to accept, with the express understanding that it referred only to the school of Christ, and not to any humanly devised system of scholastic divinity. It was not that we had changed in any wise from what we had always been, either in faith or order, but simply to distinguish us from those who had changed, and still chose to be called by our name to take away their reproach. If the New School or Missionary Baptists claim to have a regular, unbroken succession from the Primitive Baptists of the Apostolic Age, upon the ground that they were largely in the majority when the division took place in 1832, will they please tell us why the claim of succession made by Catholics is not equally clear and valid?

“The Old School Baptists never did consent to any of the antichristian doctrines and institutions of the new order, even when mixed tip with them in denominational connection; they protested against every practice for which there was no ‘Thus with the Lord,’ and after laboring to reclaim the disorderly until they found their labors were unavailing, they withdrew fellowship from them. Christ has commanded us to withdraw even from every brother that walks disorderly.”

See the Eleventh Mark of the Apostolic Church, in Chapter IX.

ENDNOTES:  

{1} Dichotomy maintains that human nature has only two distinct substances or elements —body and soul or spirit. Trichotomy maintains that there are in man three elements, body, soul, and spirit, In the account of man’s creation #Ge 2:7 and of man’s death #Ec 12:7 only two principles are mentioned —that which is called soul in Genesis being called spirit in Ecclesiastes. See also #2Co 5:1-8 Php 1:23,24 Ac 7:59. The Hebrew and Greek terms, in the Scriptures, translated soul, spirit, mind, heart, and life, are often used interchangeably, and denote the immaterial principal that man derived directly from God, each of these terms, however, being frequently employed to denote a particular aspect or function or attribute of that principle. The Greek and Roman philosophers taught that man had three constituent elements: and, in conformity with the usage of his contemporaries, Paul says “spirit, soul and body,” to express the whole of man’s nature. #1Th 5:23 In #Heb 4:12, the term “heart” includes the two terms “soul and spirit,” the lower and higher faculties of the mind. In #Lu 1:46 47, soul and spirit are the same principle.  

As to the origin of the souls of Adam’s posterity, it should forever abase the pride of human philosophy that it is unable to solve this first and nearest mystery of man’s existence —it cannot tell whether each soul is derived by direct creation from God, or by traduction from parents according to divine arrangement.  

The claims of materialistic phrenology have long since been exploded by the scientists of Europe. The quality is far more important than the quantity of brain; and there has never been a satisfactory division of the faculties of the human mind, much less an exact localization and mapping of them upon the surface of the brain.

{2} Mr. Bainbridge is the author of two other recent works—“Self-Giving, An Independent Inside View of Christian Missions;” and “Along the Lines at the Front, A General Survey of Baptist Home and Foreign Missions.” And he informs me by letter that he has drafted a more philosophical work, to be entitled “The Science of Missions;” and is writing another work, to be called “Eden to Patmos a Complete Tour of Bible Lands.” His wife, Mrs. L. S. Bainbridge, has written an interesting book, called “Round the World Letters. 

{3} T. P. Crawford “D. D.,” “for 34 years a missionary to China under the supervision of the Southern Baptist convention,” and intending soon to return to China declared in a lecture at Chapel Hill, N. C., in February, 1886, that mankind are not all descended from Adam: that the Negro is not the progeny of Ham; that the average life of man before the flood was but 1211 years; that Adam lived only 130 years, and that his family or dynasty continued for 800 years longer to bear his name, etc. (see N. C. University. Magazine for February, 1886). Such assertions are point­ blank denials of the Scriptures; and it seems lamentable that a “Convention” calling itself “Baptist” should tolerate such infidelity in its agents. The Scriptures reveal no salvation for any creatures on this globe except for the descendants of Adam; and, unless all men are descended from Adam, his race may have become extinct, and every human being now in the world may be excluded from the benefits of the redemption of Christ. —Mr. Crawford informs us, in the same lecture, that the Chinese have a great desire for Bibles, but it is to use them as fuel with which to cook their rice, and for other handy purposes; that thy take no interest in a church, or institution of any kind, built by foreign money; that they regard the gifts which the missionaries make to them as bribes to induce them to attend preaching, and, when the gifts cease, they cease attending; and that they do not know how to listen to a sermon.

{4} The United States, throughout the length and breadth of which the Old School Baptist ministers travel and preach, contain, exclusive of Alaska, about twice the area of the Roman Empire, the only “world’ through which history gives us any evidence that the Apostles personally traveled and preached.