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Recollections of men of faith : containing conversations with pioneers of the current reformation, also numerous incidents and anecdotes of these heroic heralds of the cross / by W.C. Rogers. Rogers, W. C., 1828- 400dpi TIFF G4 page images University of Kentucky, Electronic Information Access & Management Center Lexington, Kentucky 2002 b92-123-28575537 Electronic reproduction. 2002. (Beyond the shelf, serving historic Kentuckiana through virtual access (IMLS LG-03-02-0012-02) ; These pages may be freely searched and displayed. Permission must be received for subsequent distribution in print or electronically. Recollections of men of faith : containing conversations with pioneers of the current reformation, also numerous incidents and anecdotes of these heroic heralds of the cross / by W.C. Rogers. Rogers, W. C., 1828- Christian Pub. Co., St. Louis : 1889. 262 p.,  leaves of plates : ports. ; 20 cm. Coleman Microfilm. Atlanta, Ga. : SOLINET, 1993. 1 microfilm reel ; 35 mm. (SOLINET/ASERL Cooperative Microfilming Project (NEH PS-20317) ; SOL MN03473.02 KUK) Printing Master B92-123. IMLS This electronic text file was created by Optical Character Recognition (OCR). No corrections have been made to the OCR-ed text and no editing has been done to the content of the original document. Encoding has been done through an automated process using the recommendations for Level 1 of the TEI in Libraries Guidelines. Digital page images are linked to the text file. Disciples of Christ Biography. RECOLLECTIONS MEN OF FAITH. t)ONTAININ4. CONVERSATIONS WITH PIONEERS OF THE CURRENT REFORMATION. A L.-) NUMEROUS INCIDENTS AND) ANECDOTES OF THESE HEROIC HERALDS OF THE CROSS. BY W. C. ROGERS. ST. LOUIS: CHRISTIAN PUBLISHING COMPANY. 1889. This page in the original text is blank. PREFACE. I have attempted to sketch faithfully the meagre outlines of the life and labors of the distinguished men of whom I speak in these pages. To write of these without partiality or prejudice is not an easy task. In justice to myself and all concerned I wish to say that these "Recollections of Men of Faith" have been prepared while I have been engaged in holding pro- tracted meetings-going from house to house, caring for the flock, or at home, as I could find opportunity when released from more pressing duties. The anec- dotes and incidents have been recorded, not merely to amuse, but to benefit the reader. I trust that these, together with graver matters men- tioned, may not only prove interesting, but especially helpful to those who have entered or propose enter- ing the ministry. Some of these sketches are too brief, but I did the best I could-giving all the facts and incidents at hand, or that were furnished me. The more lengthy sketches could have been enlarged, but I have pre- sented enough for my present purpose. Some of my brethren in the ministry suggested that (3) PREFACE. what I knew concerning "The Pioneers," as well as what I might gather up from others, be put into book- form, that the youth now living, who had been free- born, might know something of the many trials, sac- rifices and sad experiences through which the fearless Pioneers passed, in this the nineteenth century, in order to enjoy "freedom to worship God," and that they might transmit to coming generations the pre- cious inheritance which is ours to-day. To the following persons I am under many obliga- tions for services rendered: Mrs. John N. Mulkey, Glasgow, Ky.; Elder Ed H. Smith, Horse Cave, Ky.'; Elder J. C. Creel, Plattsburg, Mo.; Prof. I. B. Grubbs, Lexington, Ky.; President W. S. Giltner, Eminence, Ky.; President W. J. Barbee, Ash Grove, Mo., and Elder J. B. Jones, Los Angeles, Cal., for his admirable essay on "The Genius and Spirit of our Plea." If in perusing these pages the reader shall derive half the pleasure I have been permitted to enjoy in preparing them, I shall feel amply rewarded for all my pains. W. C. ROGERS. Cameron, Mo., 1889. 4 CONTEN TS. CHAPTER I. A. CAMPBELL . AYLETT RAINS. ,JOHN T. JoHNSoxN B. F. HALL (GENIUS ANT) SPIRIT OF J. J. WYA'rT . JAMES E. MATTHEWS HARRISON WV. OSBORNE JoHN ROGERS . JOHN ROGERS CHAPTER 11. CHAPTER III. CHAPTER IV. CHAPTER V. O1-R PLEA, BY Jf. CHAPTER VI. CHAPTER VII. CHAPTER VIII. CHAPTER IX. CHAPTER X. CHAPTER XI. JOHN NEWTON MULKEY CHAPTER XII. JACOB CREATH, JR. . CHAPTER XIII. DUKE YOUNG . (5) 13 B. Jron.l X 30 . 53 . 78 . 106 . 126 . 132 . 135) . 158 . 195 . 209 . 230 251 This page in the original text is blank. INTRODUCTION. When a great movement perpetuates itself through successive generations, the men who stand connected with its origin and who largely make their influence felt in its inauguration, of necessity become objects of interesting inquiry to the student of history. The importance of their work, as identical with the cre- ative factors of an epoch, would forever inspire either the curious or the sober seeker of knowledge with a keen desire to know something of their lives. This is especially the case when the movement is of a religious character and attended with most important and far-reacing results. The happiness of mankind is too extensively involved in great changes affecting Christian interests to admit of indifference on the part of any who sincerely desire the highest good of the race. Religious revolutions are very properly supposed to concern the -welfare of the world in a higher degree than any other great historical events. Indeed, if we would measure the full magnitude of blessing for humanity in the Lutheran Reformation, for example, we would discover its creative influence in many great national and political changes for the better. In the effort to restore the religion of the New Testa- ment and to establish on this basis the union of all who sincerely love the Lord Jesus Christ, and who are striving to do his will, two all-important duties (7) INTRODUCTION. devolved on the active promoters of the movement. It was needful to recognize Christian worth and gen- uine piety wherever found, and to offer a ground of union which could be accepted without the sacrifice of conscientious convictions. Such effort contempla- ted no warfare upon consecrated believers themselves, but upon those traditional barriers of human origin by which Christian unity has been destroyed and out of which denominational walls have been erected to the division and distraction of the spiritual body of Christ. The inventions of men, becoming sacred from long usage and sanctified by religious reverence, con- stitute the chief and almost insuperable obstacle to the restoration of the primitive unity of the church. Those whose religious feelings have been dominated by such customs from the very dawn of their con- sciousness, are swayed by a power scarcely conceiv- able by those who have never experienced this thral- dom. Yet this enslaving spell must be broken, and all errors in theory and practice standing in the way of the union of God's people as demanded by the New Testament must be abandoned before this union can be accomplished. It was with this conception, unflinchingly and per- sistently maintained, that the "pioneers" of this great movement advocated with such power and suc- cess the union of all Christians on the divine basis of apostolic teaching apart from human traditions. They did honor alike to their intelligence and their hearts by maintaining a generous liberality of Christian sen- timent, in reaching out for the pious of all names, without the surrender of any element of the divine 8 INTRODUCTION. foundation on which all were invited to stand "in the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God." When Jesus, the divine Shepherd, re- ferred to "other sheep" than those- which he had beg un to gather, he significantly added: "Them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice, and there shall be one flock, one Shepherd." Thus in his thought the oneness of his flock depended on the hearing of his voice alone and apart from the unau- thorized voices of all false shepherds or self-consti- tuted leaders of his people. Now the church, in con- sequence of " the falling away" predicted by Paul, has lost more than its primitive unity. Indeed, it lost this by losing its full and exclusive adherence to the teaching of its divine Head, and the restoration of the former is impossible without the re-establishment of the latter. For just so long as the authority of men claims and receives the reverence due alone to the authority of God, the discordant voices of false shep- herds will effectually hinder the scriptural union of God's people. There must be " the pulling down of strongholds-casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ." Accordingly, the men introduced to the reader of this biographical work acted constantly with the conviction that they had much more to do than simply to plead for Christian union. They conceived it to be also their province to offer to the religious world the only basis on which this union could be effected-the indestructible "foundation of the apostles and proph- 2 9 INTRODUCTION. ets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner-stone." To point ever to this and steadfastly resist the inter- mingling of traditional elements they regarded as a duty of most imperative and solemn obligation. In their noble effort to "come firmly to original ground and take up things just as the apostles left them," they felt the incongruity of accepting "the historic episcopate" as originating without the seal of apos- tolic authority, and they disdained the self-stultifica- tion that would be involved in the practical recogni- tion of any of those perversions of Christian ordi- nances by which the great apostasy is characterized. They well knew that their grand plea for Christian union could never be successfully carried out by any. attempt to establish a quasi fellowship of believers on a mere sentimental agreement to disagree over "the doctrines and commandments of men." Now the sublime work which these heroic lovers of divine truth proposed to themselves is essentially the work that devolves on their brethren of the pres- ent generation. To end in the establishment of an- other " denomination," the formation of one more religious party, would be to pass sentence of condem- nation on their very existence as a people. It would but repeat and intensify the sin of sectarianism in- stead of extirpating its hideous features from the fair form of Christ's spiritual body. If, indeed, the struggles and triumphs of the great men whose labors are described in this work become a source of inspir- ation to its readers, an instructive help toward the formation of correct conceptions and a stimulus of high resolve, the aims and labors of its author will 10 INTRODUCTION. 11 be amply j ustified. W. C. Rogers, of Missouri, the son of one of the self-sacrificing leaders of this move- ment, is well qualified in a number of respects for the authorship of a work like this. His intimate person- al acquaintance with many of those whose character and career he here delineates; his complete sympathy with their purposes and toils, and his educational fitness to do justice to their noble lives, induce the belief that the work will prove interesting and in- structive. Let it go forth on its mission in furthering the interests of the great cause of human redemption. I. B. GRUBBS. This page in the original text is blank. RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. CHAPTER I. ALEXANVDER CAMPBEL L. HEARING HIM-HIS WORK IN THE RELIGIOUS WORLD. In the year 1850 Alexander Campbell was making a tour through Kentucky in the interest of Bethany College. He came to Harrodsburg, where I, with many other school-boys, heard him speak on a chosen theme. The hour for preaching, at 11 o'clock A. M., had nearly arrived, when Mr. Campbell alighted from his car- riage and walked into the law office of the Hon. Frank Ballinger, near the meeting-house in which he was soon to speak. Having seated himself, he called for a small piece of tobacco, not to chew, but to take a bad taste out of his mouth. A young brother preparing for the ministry hied away into the burg, and soon returned with the desired quid, and the unpleasant taste was at once removed. Whereupon he walked to the house of God, and, in company with James Shannon, Presi- dent of Bacon College, entered the old-fashioned pul- pit. He read these words from the first chapter of 2 Tim- othy: " When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grand- mother Lois, and in thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also." He spoke full two RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. hours, in behalf of a better, more thorough training of -the youth of our country, insisting that the Bible be taught in all families, schools and colleges. In speaking of the capabilities of the human mind, and of its wonderful developments, he referred to the perfection attained in the science of music by such masters as Beethoven, Mozart, Handel and others. These advanced gradually from the A, B, C, until, touching the chords of the harp with such a skillful hand, discoursing such strains of music, that all ears were ravished, all souls thrilled and carried captive. By hard study and continuous application, they had so mastered certain difficult pieces as to be enabled to play them all unconsciously, seeming not to pay the least attention to what they were doing. No end to progress or advancement in this life-none, per- haps, in the life beyond. Who can measure the height, depth, length, or breadth, of man's capabilities A Mr. Soloman, German by descent, Professor of Music in Greenville Institute, sat right before the speaker, and was more than delighted at what he seemed to regard as a personal compliment. He shuffled about, winked and nodded, looked around ever and anon, rubbing his hands together as if par- tially beside himself. But everybody knew Prof. Soloman, had witnessed his antics many a time, and only smiled. The entire address was a most powerful and emphatic plea in favor of educating the whole man, the physical, intel- lectual, moral and spiritual. This was absolutely essential in order to the well-being of man here and hereafter; without this we could never advance as a 14 ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. nation to a higher civilization, could never transmit, untarnished, our liberties and free institutions to those coming after us. In this speech, it is needless to say, there was much material presented for serious thought -for mothers, fathers, Christian people of all orders, as well as for those statesmen who stand at the helm and direct the ship of state. The theme discussed on that occasion by the distinguished speaker is to-day one of immense magnitude, as we contemplate our t3ins as a nation, the prevailing ignorance among the masses now pouring into our midst from all parts of the world. It is said that the mariner, far out on the bosom of the sea, tossed hither and thither by wind and wave, throughl clouds and darkness, stops, when opportunity affords, and takes a reckoning, that he may know where he is so it might be well for this great nation of ours to ascertain its exact position. There may be dangers ahead. It may be that the prow of our noble ship is turned in the direction of quicksands, shoals, or hidden rocks. Unless a nation is more than highly civilized it cannot possibly stand-ultimately it must go down. Long ago the sentence came forth from the mouth of Him who "changeth the times and the sea- sons, who removeth kings and setteth up kings," that, "the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee (God) shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted." Many of the college boys were not a little disap- pointed in hearing Mr. Campbell, expecting to witness a display of oratory, as they imagined oratory to be. Instead of this, they had listened to a plain, dispas- 15 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. sionate argument. Not enough show, and by far too much cool reasoning and statement of facts to suit their crude taste. However, it was mutually conceded that the speech, in its line, was a masterly effort. Never had a great audience paid such rapt attention to any speaker in that house before. Pretty difficult to define eloquence, or analyze an eloquent discourse. And then a good style-what is it -and how hard to obtain it! A gentleman once heard John -C. Calhoun, in the United States Senate. "Why," said he, "his lan- guage is so plain, so easily understood. I verily be- lieve I could use as good myself." On being told what had been said of his address and style, Calhoun remarked that that plain, terse style had cost him twenty years of hard study. During Mr. Campbell's stay in Harrodsburg he was as busy as a bee. When not lecturing, or reposing on his couch, he was constantly engaged in conversa- tion. I am not sure that I am correct in thus stating the matter; he rarely ever conversed in a large com- pany of friends-but rather declaimed-and all were willing that he should do so. President Shannon was of the same order, largely. Still he and Mr. Campbell now and then really conversed, and at times with much animation. President Shannon, in speaking of their talks, remarked that he had failed to provoke Mr. Campbell into a controversy as to the justness or unjustness of the late war with Mexico. Mr. Camp- bell, however, did say to him with considerable em- phasis that he could not believe that one Christian nation, so-called at least, could wage a just war 16 ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. against another Christian nation. He would not dis- cuss the merits of the question-but this was his view, in short, and here the matter ended. But President Shannon did believe that the United States was justi- fiable in going to war against Mexico, and was as well prepared to defend this view as any statesman in the Union. He was wedded to the political school of John C. Calhoun, and would have suffered death rather than abandon his creed. This expression may seem ex- travagant, but I will not modify it, for I feel sure of its truth. When that eminent statesman died, I said to President Shannon one morning just before called to books, " that his sun had gone down behind a cloud." "Not so," he replied, "it has set in splen- dor." President Shannon also held the view that if American slavery was not ordained of God, it c-uld be maintained by the teaching of Christ and his apos- tles, and ought to be perpetuated. No man that I have ever been permitted to hear on this subject could array as many and as strong, plausible arguments from the Scriptures, in favor of this position, as could he. He discussed in Harrodsburg with President John C. Young, of Centre College, Danville, Ky., the moral and scriptural bearings of American slavery, and that, too, with the zeal of a thorough-going, scholarly son of Erin. But few men in the Current Reformation forty years ago could so strongly fortify a single pro- position as President James Shannon. His language was the best-he played no tricks-never set traps to catch his opponent. but was ever candid, fair, straight- forward. Mr. Campbell regarded James Shannon not only as a Christian gentleman, but as a scholar of 17 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. rare culture. I heard him remark that the address delivered, or read, before the Bible Union Convention at Memphis, 1852, by President Shannon, was com- posed of the purest English he had been permitted to hear in the United States. Mr. Campbell's position on American slavery is well-known. He looked upon it as a moral blot on our fair escutcheon-as a fearful political evil-doomed finally to be rooted out and destroyed by the humanizing, Christianizing influences of Christianity. When Mr. Campbell passed through Maysville, Ky., on his way from Bethany to hold the Lexington debate, Aylett Rains met and spent the night with him. The approaching discussion and the probable results were, of course, the uppermost topics of conversation. Rains had tried the steel of the redoubtable Sir Knight, N. L. Rice, now about to enter the list against Mr. Campbell, and hence he thoroughly understood his skill in debate, as well as in maneuvering. As an " artful dodger" Rains considered him pre- eminent-far in advance of all he had ever encoun- tered in pitched battle. Pretty well versed in church history, the philosophy of the schools,-thoroughly posted in the creed of his church-sharp in logic- plausible and shrewd,-patching up new-vamping and burnishing worn-out errors-ever keeping in the background, and veiling plainest truths and facts undeniable,-such was Mr. Rice, and such a man was not to be desired as an opponent in public debate. Momentous questions had been agreed upon, and could not be profitably examined in the presence of the learned or the unlearned with such a lawyer-like 18 ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. debatant. Moreover, he was sarcastic, full of humor- ous, laughter-provoking anecdotes, and was constantly seeking the advantage; ever ready to parry a blow, or step aside in time of real danger. Even when suf- fering a Waterloo defeat he was cheerful. Such an opponent was Mr. Rice, and hence possessed great power over the people at large. For argument he could substitute bold, reckless assertion; for indisputable fact, anecdote; for plain, unvarnished truth, precious morsels of casuistry, crowding into one half hour's speech far-reaching questions that the wisest mortal could not fully answer in a day. All of this and more of a similar character Mr. Campbell said he had heard from reliable sources. " I preferred," he remarked, " President John C. Young as my opponent, but he was not the available man. He is, in every respect, a Christian gentleman, a man of acknowledged scholarship and integrity. Possess- ed of dignity and fairness, he would never engage in playing tricks as a mountebank in order to obtain the advantage or secure an evanescent victory. Mr. Rice, from all accounts of him, will enter the debate in order to succeed at all hazards. He will endeavor to carry every point, whether he answers my arguments or not. But then all the arrangements are now completed- no change can be effected-' a mouse may evade the paw of a lion."' "This," said Bro. Rains, "seemed to be a sort of prophetic utterance, as Mr. Campbell could rarely induce Mr. Rice to stick to questions fairly, or answer his arguments on their merits." After the debate was published, Mr. Rains. on reading it the first time, was considerably annoyed by the 19 20 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. anecdotes, evasions and quibbles of Mr. Rice, while the candid presentation of the whole truth, on the- part of Mr. Campbell, was all that could be desired by his friends; so Mr. Rains conceived, and was well pleased. Reading it a second time, he was less -worried by these innuendoes and funny allusions, and more deep- ly impressed with the powerful reasoning and sweep- ing generalizations of Mr. Campbell. Giving the debate a third careful reading, he scarce- ly noticed the pitiful tricks and artful maneuvers of Mr. Rice, while the great arguments and unquestioned facts offered by Mr. Campbell stood out in bold relief as imperishable monuments in favor of the truth as it is in Jesus. In May, 1852, the Bible Union Association convened in the city of Memphis, Tenn., for the purpose of dis- cussing, in well-prepared addresses, the necessity of revising the word of God, and giving it in the exact words of the Holy Spirit to all nations. John L. Waller, at that time the most distinguished and influential Baptist in the West, was president of that association. He and Mr. Campbell had often engaged in many a pitched battle as to the teaching of the Christian Scriptures, and yet they had seen but little of each other. That they were now exceeding good friends, their correspondence would evidently show. Strange that they had not seen more of one another up to this date. Now they had both stopped at the same hotel, and Mr. Waller's room, by pre- arrangement, adjoined Mr. Campbell's. When introduced, Mr. Waller facetiously remarked: "Well, Bro. Campbell, you are a better looking man ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. than I expected to see. For a 'fierce warrior' you have a very pleasant face indeed." Mr. Campbell replied pleasantly: "As to looks, Bro. Waller, I shall say little or nothing. I had no conception of seeing so much carnality in John L. Waller, of Kentucky," alluding to his weight, which was, I presume, at this time no less than three hundred pounds avoirdupois. These great and good men had many most fraternal interviews at this meeting. It was talked of, about this period, that John L. Waller was coming over to the views of Mr. Campbell, but it was only talked of, never realized. No doubt Mr. Waller's feelings were greatly changed toward Mr. Campbell, and he re- garded him more orthodox, so to say, than at any previous time. Many letters most fraternal passed between them, but Mr. Waller died a pronounced Baptist. When Mr. Campbell delivered an address, in 1855, before the young ladies of the Baptist Female Semin- ary, New Castle, Ky., I had a conversation with him as to this correspondence between him and Mr. Waller. Prof. Farnem, of Georgetown, Ky., had requested Dr. Nuckols, of Shelbyville, to ask Mr. Campbell for Mr. Waller's letters addressed to him in the past few years. As the Doctor was unable to see Mr. Camp- bell, he desired me to ask for these. I did so. And I shall not soon forget his looks and words on that occasion. Turning his clear blue eyes upon me, he said: "My Baptist brethren now have all the letters of Bro. Waller to me they will ever obtain-at least until after my death." Did Prof. Farnem write the Life of John L. Waller, or did Dr. S. H. Ford IWhich 21 2 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. Thomas Campbell lived and died a staunch Cal- vinist. He never preached on God's sovereignty as connected with man's free agency except in the very words of the Holy Spirit. His opinions were scrupu- lously held as private property, not to be obtruded upon others, nor to be interfered with by anyone. However, he loved dearly all his brethren, those from whom he differed in opinion as much as those with whom he was in accord. The safe ground of union and communion occupied by the disciples at the present time was not discov- ered by accident. The hand of God, it appears to me, may be noted in many a step taken, in many a movement inaugurated. Strange, indeed, is it, that in all the difficulties encountered, in all the obstacles overcome, how few unscriptural positionswere assumed by the pioneers. The cardinal features of "The Plea" remain the same to-day and are as invulnerable as when first proclaimed to the world more than eighteen hundred years ago. How cautiously, how prayerfully, and may I be permitted to say, how successfully, did 6ur- fathers seek the truth. And their escape from bondage, is it not marvelous Taking into consider- ation their environment, may we not conclude that the Lord gave them deliverance-granted them that per- fect freedom now enjoyed Groping their way in Egyptian darkness, how were they ever enabled to see the light, or to attain the priceless blessings of Chris- tian freedom In the beginning of his arduous labors as reformer, Alexander Campbell conferred much with his father, Thos. Campbell. He relied greatly on his judgment, and rarely ever differed from him on matters 22 ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. of paramount importance. Occasionally they stood opposed to each other in things purely philosophic or speculative. They frequently talked on the subject of foreknowledge and predestination. On one occasion, while conversing on this profound theme, Alexander said, " Father, I am of the opinion that the best way in which to discuss this matter is on our knees in prayer to God." A most excellent way in which to disc-ss a great many questions besides the foreknowl- edge of God. One thing is worthy of being recorded in regard to thet several debates, oral and written, of Alexander Campbell. He is strongest, most powerful in his strictly Bible arguments. In his arguments supported by history he is correct and convincing; but not so overwhelmingly triumphant as when relying wholly upon the Word of God to sustain him. Take, for ex- ample, his great debate with Purcell. With what clearness and force he reasons when confining himself wholly to the one Book, and how lame the effort of his opponent in comparison. Again, examine closely the discussion with Robt. Owen, and all fair-minded persons will at once be convinced that his most con- clusive arguments are derived from God's Word-- arguments which come down upon his opponent " ter- rible as an army with banners," sweeping away and consigning to utter oblivion all his pretentious reason- ing. Was that celebrated twelve hours' speech ever equalled by any of his cotemporaries And was it not rooted and grounded on the Bible Its strength and glory consists in its being of the Word of God, and being true to it first and last. 23 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. There can be no safety in wrangling over untaught questions-questions foreign to the Bible. Such mat- ters can never be settled to the satisfaction of anyone, by philosophic or metaphysical disquisitions. Such' reasoning is well calculated to divide the Lord's people, and turn the mind and heart away from things that make for peace. Herein is surely taught a lesson to all disciples of Christ, whether it be seriously heeded or not. Much freedom is guaranteed the Christian in the New Testament. He who sits at the feet of Christ and his apostles daily-who under- stands thoroughly the Word of God and strictly con- fines himself in the examination of all religious matters to its teachings, not speculating or theorizing, how- ever strongly tempted to do so, is, of all men in the kingdom of God, the freest and in the least danger of being led astray or of falling into any very griev- ous error. What has Alexander Campbell accomplished in the religious world What has he done to benefit man- kind 1. I will only offer to the reader a few suggestions in answer to the above questions; much might be said and to the point, but space forbids. He showed those sincerely in search of the truth how to read the Scrip- tures so as to understand them. Owing to the divisions in the religious world and the various theories as to conversion, the Bible had been neglected. Or if it was examined, these contra- dictory theories were in the way of understanding its meaning. Besides, many persons were in the habit (and are to-day) of approaching the Scriptures with 24 ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. a proposition in mind and heart that must be proved to be true. This has been, and is at the present time, a fruitful source of error. It will ever be the wrong method by which to reach the truth. Mr. Campbell urged all who desired to know the will of God to sit at the feet of Christ and his apostles, and, according to just laws of interpretation, submit themselves to their teaching; endeavoring simply to learn as pupils what must be believed and what must be done in the premises. 2. Jesus Christ is the central personage in the Christian Scriptures-occupies the central position in the " Christian system." Christ and not dogma, form- ula, or philosophic speculations, is the true object of faith. That "Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the liv- ing God " is the Christian's creed. 3. The scriptural plan by which the sinner is par- doned of past sins, becomes a disciple of Christ; what he must believe, what he must do, and what the Lord must do for him, in order to the forgiveness of his sins..that he may enjoy the gift of the Holy Spirit and the hope of immortality, were all presented in their proper order as found in the Christian Scriptures. 4. Baptism and the Lord's Supper were not occu- pying their proper place as ordained by the Lord Jesus Christ. He called attention to this fact, and also to the scriptural design of both of these institu- tions, urging on all whom it concerned to abandon the traditions of men and accept what was taught by Christ and his apostles as to the purpose of these divine ordinances. The minister of the gospel, as well as the Rlock, con- 3 25 26 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. ceived that the leading object in coming together on the Lord's day was, after singing and praying to God, to preach or to hear preaching. It is clear, however,, from the examples given in the New Testament, to- gether with allusions in church history in regard to the practice of the disciples of Christ in the first and second centuries, that the special purpose for which the early Christians met together on the first day of the week was to celebrate the Lord's Supper, commune with the Lord and with each other, to edify one an- other in reading the Scriptures, in songs, in prayers, in exhortations. 5. Christian freedom consists in strict obedience to the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus-this obedience, bear in mind, ever springing from supreme love to God the Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ who died for us. Christian freedom is not licentiousness, and hence grants to no member of the body of Christ the privilege of doing that which interferes with the rights, or endangers the spiritual life of another mem- ber. There is, between faith and opinion, much dif- ference-faith being based on evidence, opinion arising from mere conjecture or inference in the absence of evidence. All disciples can, and must be, one in faith, but can never be such in opinion. Demand the one, tolerate the other. How just the aphorism: ".In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity." Preach facts based on testimony. Refrain from preaching opinions, however beautiful or plausible. Never attempt to propagate them. In no other way can the Lord's people dwell together in unity. ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. Call Bible things by Bible names. Avoid the lan- guage of Ashdod, the phraseology and philosophy of the schools, as well as that of the creeds. Speak as God speaks in his word, and where the Scriptures are silent dare not to speak or to speculate. Call no man master, however great, or good, or learned. Look to Christ. Search the one Book of books. Know the divine will, obey it and live. 6. To the Christian people found among all relig- ious bodies in Christendom Alexander Campbell pre- sented, in great plainness and in the most earnest and fraternal manner, the scriptural basis of Christian union and communion. He was well assured that there were loyal hearts in all the denominations; that these were weary of living longer in opposition to the letter and spirit of the New Testament, were anxious to accept the ancient order of things, the divine will in its fullness, if they only knew the way out of bondage. To these he showed, without their Sbeing required to sacrifice a single cherished principle or doing violence to conscience, how all the disciples of Christ could henceforth be one in faith and practice,- one in hope and in love, and one in spirit,-working together in the one church of Jesus Christ, under one name, and as one united body in order to the salvation of the world. If Christian people shall ever stand together as one body, as did the Lord's people in the days of pure, primitive Christianity, it will be in harmony with the views entertained and expressed by Mr. Campbell, which views may be found in letter and in spirit in the Christian Scriptures, especially enlarged upon in 27 28 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. the memorable prayer of the Savior, as recorded in the 17th chapter of John's testimony. Protestantism can never be united-could not become, if united, the church of Christ. Divided Christendom can never conquer the world for Christ. Christians must be one in faith, in sympathy, in work, in order to the accom- plishment of this glorious purpose. Mr. Campbell realized these sad facts and mourned over them. One of the prominent features belonging to the great movement inaugurated by him and others was to bring together the disciples of Christ, now scattered throughout the world, that they might be en- abled, henceforth and with one accord, to work togeth- er in love, directed by the one divine standard of faith and manners. To reach this .end his prayers ascended to God the Father through the Lord Jesus Christ, and he gave the best energies of his laborious and eventful life. The Christian world is not prepared, at the present time, -to measure in all of its grand proportions the matchless plea as advocated by Mr. Campbell and his co-workers. It is the New Testament plea, in all of its fullness, which has ever been in direct antagon- ism to denominationalism. Mr. Campbell, in the providence of God, was permitted to occupy a lofty plane, and from this position and in the spirit of his Master, called upon the good of the whole earth to renounce the guidance of fallible, human leaders, come up higher, breathe the pure, invigorating atmos- phere of apostolic Christianity, adjust the armor of God upon them, .and henceforth engage, not in fighting one another, but in contending for the faith once de- ALEXANDER CAMPBELL. 29 livered to the saints-for things that make for peace and edify, and go on to perfection. Light is breaking, however. Creeds, as bonds of union and communion, are becoming less powerful day by day. Touching the eastern sky, golden beams of light may be seen, proclaiming the dawn of a new day. The whole earth will be full of light by and by. The great kingdoms of this world must pass forever away, while the Lord's kingdom alone shall stand. In vain we seek to know the time of the end, the triumph of the religion of the humble Nazarene, when the people of God shall all be one in faith, in hope, in love and in work. But with unfailing faith we pray the Lord of Hosts to hasten that glorious day. CHAPTER II. AYLETT RAINS. CONVERSATIONS WITH--SUDDEN DEATH. It was during the winter of 1855-6, Aylett Rains paid a visit to the church at Shelbyville, Ky. He de- livered several practical discourses, after which we went into the country not far distant for the purpose of holding. a protracted meeting. The brother and sister with whom we sojourned during the meeting were exceedingly kind to us, administering to our temporal wants, while we were engaged in ministering to the spiritual demands of the church and vicinity. We were accommodated with a large room, which was blessed with a large, old-fashioned fire place. Returning nightly from meeting, and spending a short time in conversation with the family, we usually retired to our comfortable quarters, and, seating our- selves before a large, blazing fire, engaged in conver- sation concerning other times and other men, until the time arrived for going to rest, which was not infre- quently a late hour. I propounded questions, and Rains, with unaffected ease and pleasure, answered by rehearsing events and incidents which had come under his own immediate observation, and which formed a part of his past eventful life. In the years 1827-8, he resided in what was then known as the Western Reserve of Ohio, and at that AYLETT RAINS. This page in the original text is blank. AYLETT RAINS. time advocated in all good conscience the doctrine of Restorationism. Then and there he met for the first time the zealous and eloquent Walter Scott, of happy mnemory. His iRestorationist brethren had fully posted him as to the ability and captivating manner of Elder Scott, and requested him most earnestly to hear him, when opportunity offered, to weigh his arguments and expose his false reasoning, as they felt sure he was able to do. On a certain occasion he attended one of these great meetings. Thousands had come from near and from afar to hear the new.doctrine of the distinguished speaker. There he met numbers of his brethren, who counselled him to take notes of all the discourses de- livered. On the first day the preaching was only fair, nothing being presented of a very striking character. It was announced that on the following day the 15th chapter of 1 Corinthians would be examined in the forenoon and afternoon. This was glad news to Rains, who was early on the ground the next day, as well as many of his Restorationist friends and brethren. They were in full force and in high glee, for they were confident that their champion, ever ready for the fray, could drive from the field any Sir Knight who might dare to break a lance with him. Rains was very particular in selecting a suitable place to hear, in the immense assembly, for he must know all that might be said on this memorable chap- ter. Therefore he sat right before the speaker and near the centre of the audience. Elder Scott had spoken, perhaps an hour, and in his 31 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. happiest strain, when he quoted a certain passage of Scripture, and riveted the plain truth of it by clear and convincing argument. This was hurled kindly, but with immense force, against the doctrine of Restor- ationism. Looking Rains full in the face, and point- ing toward him with his hand, he exclaimed at the top of his shrill voice, " Brother Rains, is not this so" Quick as thought, Rains decided how he must answer. He was afraid to say yes, lest Scott might reply, " Then why not come over on our side " He was afraid to say no, lest he might be challenged for a discussion of the merits of the question involved. Therefore, he prudently, avoiding both horns of the dilemma, replied, "I presume it is so." This he regarded as good, and very good indeed, for the time being. On adjournment of the meeting, his brethren and friends gathered round him, more than anxious to see his notes, hear what he had to say, and receive a small amount of comfort, even should it be cold com- fort-which was the case. He simply held up a blank piece of paper, remarking, " Here are my notes, all of them." Then he observed, with great delibera- tion: I have never in all my life heard just such a speaker, or just such preaching. I am sure the preacher is not inspired, but there is inspiration in what he says. I am not now prepared to deny what he says, nor am I ready to accept all. He inter- prets the Word of God after a new fashion. I tell you the truth. I have so far been unable to detect the slightest flaw in any of his arguments. I must think on these things." This was a damper to his dear brethren. They 32 AYLETT RAINS. were, of course, crest-fallen and deeply mortified. Their leader, unable to find any objection to this new doctrine, puzzled as to the best course to be pursued, was unwilling to stand before the people and attempt to answer discourses which, at least, the more thought- ful and discerning could see, were as so many guns pointed directly and indirectly against the very cita- del of Restorationism. The evening of that day a number of persons were baptized. Rains, walking down the path leading to the beautiful stream sur- rounded on either side by high banks, stood alone, witnessing the imposing scene. The last candidate having been baptized, the benediction was pro- nounced, and Rains knew not why, but lingered, musing on the strange spectacle that had made such a profound impression on his mind. He stood as if spell-bound. Suddenly looking up, he observed Elder Scott coming in his wet clothes along the path in which he stood-coming directly towards him. When within a few paces of him, he stepped out of the path and turned his back, when Elder Scott rushed upon him, exclaiming, as he embraced him, "Come, Brother Rains, and preach with me the everlasting gospel to the inhabitants of earth." An electric shock could not have thrilled him more. He made no reply. Elder Scott said nothing further, but, going to a house near by, changed his clothes. Never before had so much light been shed on the Christian Scriptures by any preaching he had ever heard. He beheld the foundation of his doctrine of Restora- tionism crumbling, and the stately superstructure tottering, ready to fall. His guiding star was Truth; 33 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. this must be followed, lead whithersoever it might. Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God. He believed this with his whole heart. The confession, how clear, how beautiful, how sublime! Before cross- ing the line between the kingdom of Christ and that of Satan, this must be made before men, angels, and God. And baptism for the remission of sins, to the proper subjects, this cannot be denied by those who love truth more than party. Immersion is the un- doubted action of baptism. All these things he could and must accept. Still he was in trouble, now and then, as he pondered these questions. The doctrine of Restorationism would now and then come in view and hang round him, clouding his vision. How could he believe that a part of mankind would perish for- ever-that when life is closed here the doors of mercy are closed against the wicked or impenitent forever! What a dark shadow would this view cast over a part of the glorious universe of God! Man's -sins must be blotted out in this life in order that he may receive the approbation of God and become an accept- able worshipper. Here the way is plain, and duty clear. As to probation after death, there are diffi- culties. One that is insurmountable Christ died for all in this world, to save all from sin, and bring back from the grave. But after temporal death, the sinner dies a second death. From that death Christ never died to redeem anyone. From that death there is no redemption; still God is love, and he may, in his infinite compassion, save all. This is not based on evidence-only conjecture, only opinion. Believing in Christ and obeying him will set aside forever Res- 34 AYLETT RAINS. torationism. Be this as it may, I must go forward in obedience to known commands. He was almost persuaded to yield obedience to Christ, when he con- cluded it would be wise to see Ebenezer Williams, a staunch Universalist, and one of his most devoted friends. Many hours, day and night, were spent in examining, Bible in hand, the leading positions pre- sented to the people by Elder Scott. After an impar- tial and thorough investigation, they both mutually determined that they must submit to the ordinance of Christian baptism. They both went alone to a beautiful pool of water near by. Rains baptized 'Williams on a profession of his faith in Christ, and for the remission of his sins. Williams then taking the confession of Rains, baptized him for the remission of sins, and then they went their way rejoicing. Then Rains became a member of the Church of Christ. No sooner had he identified himself with the Disciples of Christ, than his old friends and brethren became his bitter enemies, and began to wage an unrelenting war against him. They misrepresented him, persecuted him, even went so far in their oppo- sition to him as to declare boldly that he had not changed his views in the least degree, was a wolf in sheep's clothing, and altogether unworthy the confi- dence of honest people. At the Mahoning Association, held in Warren, Ohio, August, 1828, he was invited to deliver an address. The- address was well received by the more thoughtful and prudent, yet many disciples were not satisfied with his positions as they understood them. They were in favor of calling upon him to make a public declaration as to 35 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. his opinions. And if these opinions were not satis- factory to them they proposed to have no fellowship with him. Rains, hearing of all this, arose and stated that many of his former opinions remained unchanged; still he had no thought of preaching them-they were private property, and should be held strictly as such. Alexander Campbell, who was himself present at this association, and knew all concerning this mat- ter, thus speaks in the "Millennial Harbinger," pp. 148 and 149: "Although a majority of the brethren were satisfied, still a number were not reconciled to. this decision. It was repeatedly urged that'it mat- tered not what his private - opinions were on this sub- ject, provided he regarded them only as matters of, opinion, and held them as private property. I urged this course from the conviction that, if these opinions were not agitated nor discussed, the ancient gospel would cause them to wither away. This was my philosophy then, and, being much pleased with this brother, I had no doubt, from his very handsome ad- dress and acquirements, he would be a very useful laborer in the great field. I only heard of him a few times since, but the other day I received the following letter from him, which, I think, proves the wisdom of the course pursued, and goes far to recommend the principles contended for in this article: " ' CINCINNATI, April 13, 1830. "'DEAR BROTHER:-Being aware that you are often addressed through the medium of letters, and that the multiplicity of engagements which call for your at- tention render brevity a necessary qualification in 36 AYLETT RAINS. your correspondents, I will, in this communication, be as brief as possible. "' I wish to inform you that my 'Restorationist' sentiments have been slowly and imperceptibly erased from my mind, by the ministry of Paul and Peter, and some other illustrious preachers, with whose dis- courses and writing, I need not tell you, you seem to be intimately acquainted. After my immersion, I brought my mind, as much as I possibly could, like a blank surface, to the ministry of the New Institu- tion, and by this means, I think, many characters of truth have been imprinted in my mind, which did not formerly exist there. I also consider myself as grow- ing in grace and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ every day, and, as I give myself wholly to the work of an evangelist, I have, within the last twelve months, been instrumental in disseminating the truth exten- sively, and in removing from many minds some heavy masses of sectarian rubbish. The facts of the New Testament will conquer the world. They have con- quered me, and are now conquering thousands of others. The reformation is progressing in almost all parts of the western country through which I have traveled, beyond my most sanguine expectations. My former associates persecute me, I would say, most cruelly. I hope you will not permit them to preju- dice your mind against me. I shall have many diffi- culties to encounter, in consequence of the evil circum- stances which formerly surrounded me-or, to speak more plainly, in consequence of having once been a Universalist. I, however, hope to rise above the oppo- sition of my quondam brethren, and during the re- 37 38 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN O1F FAITH. mainder of my days to dovote my energies, not to the building up of sectarian systems, but to the teaching of the Word. "'I should be very happy to hear of the welfare of Father Campbell. I am strongly disposed to recip- rocate the kindness of that beloved brother, by de- claring that, if I were Timothy, Father Campbell should, in preference to any man, be my Paul. You will not call this flattery. It is a warm, sentimental effusion of my heart. AYLETT RAINS."' Aylett Rains and Arthur Crithfield, while on an evangelistic tour through Ohio, came to Jamestown, and at once engaged in proclaiming the glad tidings to the good people, in a meeting-house belonging to one of the denominations of the day. But the gospel of Christ differs essentially from the gospel as formu- lated and taught by Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Wesley, and others. Very soon the villagers were thoroughly aroused, and very much troubled, by what they heard, for these fearless preachers taught them things which it was not lawful for them to receive, being orthodox. Creeds of human origin, prepared by good men and with no evil intent, are surely con- demned by the Word of God. In them may be found a few articles that may be esteemed good, some things bad, others of an indifferent character. The Christian people of Jamestown had, not knowing what else to do, adopted these human creeds in order to be gov- erned thereby in all things appertaining to the disci- pline and edification of their members. Hence, to accept the New Testament as the only creed of their AYLETT RAINS. churches and all-sufficient, would be revolutionary, and could not be tolerated by the Jamestown ortho- doxy-no, not for one moment. Such a course of conduct would not only set aside the creeds forever, but would leave their churches, as they supposed, without any bond of union and communion whatever. They would thus be driven on the great sea of time, hither and thither, whithersoever wind or wave might impel them. No chart, or compass, or beacon-light to direct, with no possible chance of reaching port in safety. Therefore it was deemed, absolutely essential to the peace of that part of Christendom that a council be called, in order to determine what should be done with these heretics, for they had brought strange things to the people's ears. The leaders beheld, with deep mortification, their craft in danger. Demetrius, the silversmith, would perhaps be thrown out of busi- ness-would not be allowed any longer to make shrines for the goddess Diana-the temple would be vacated, and worship would be discontinued. Conse- quently, in their pious wrath, the Christian people of Jamestown resolved upon a council, and now and then shouted aloud, "Great is Diana of the Ephesians."1 The council was held, was largely attended, was conducted in good order, and the leadirg purpose for which it had been called was accomplished. It was a grand success, at least so regarded by many; a few conceived it to be a great failure. It was agreed that Rains and Crithfield should be debarred the privilege of preaching any further in any of the orthodox meet- ing-houses of worship in the town or in the vicinity. 39r 40 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. The last night these preachers were permitted to speak in the meeting-house in which they had held their meetings, the decision of the council was publicly and authoritatively announced, viz.: that all houses of worship in the town and in the vicinity were closed, locked and barred against these heretical preachers. This announcement, as might have been expected, was well received by some Christian people, while others looked upon the whole procedure as contrary, in letter and in spirit, to the teaching of Christ and his -apostles. Non-professors were divided in their views, some thinking it just and right every way; others believing it would result in more harm than good. There lived, at that time, in Jamestown, a certain Dr. M. Winans, a practicing physician, a man of fine natural ability, possessing a good education, being well-informed on almost all subjects, and withal a man of great popularity and influence among the people at large. But, alas! he was inclined to infi- delity; still he was acknowledged to be a moral man -was benevolent and kind. When the decree of the churches was made public, he arose and spoke, by permission, a few words to the people. He remarked that it was well-known to all persons in that audience that, while he was a church- going man, he was a non-professor, by some consid- ered an unbeliever, an infidel, or a skeptic. One thing he did believe in, and that was fairplay. Locks, and bars, and bolts, he did not look upon as very good arguments in this land of freedom; that these preachers were welcome to hold forth nightly in his AYLETT RAINS. private residence, were welcome to do so as long as they desired, and during good behavior, and that the people were invited to come and hear them. The preachers, with many thanks, accepted the generous offer, and, before adjourning for the night, announced that there would be preaching the following night at the dwelling of Dr. M. Winans. So the meeting con- tinued, and numbers of people crowded to hear the truth. Crithfield being unable to remain longer, Rains was left to battle alone for the truth, and, if not master of the situation, he was at least equal to the occasion. The circumstances now demanded greater caution and prudence, and he therefore applied himself to the work before him with unusual vigor and energy. Driven from the orthodox churches, looked upon as a heretic, as preaching a false gospel, as attempting to lead the people into ruinous paths,-under such circumstances he resolved to stick close to the one Book, and, if pos- sible, and by the help of God, to preach the primitive gospel in greater plainness and with more power. An additional consideration determined him to ad- just the armor of God about him, and fight more cour- ageously the battles of King Jesus. It was this: He conceived that Dr. Winans was unconsciously becom- ing interested in the preaching. Hence, he must marshal the best evidence at his command, in favor of the authenticity and genuineness of the Scriptures of the New Testament, especially, and dislodge from his and other minds the demon of unbelief. Often solitary and alone, he would propound to himself the question: " Will Dr. Winans ever become a Christian 4 41 42 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. Will he ever be induced to throw overboard his infi- delity, or skepticism, and, believing in Christ, obey him What a grand Christian he would make! Eternity alone could unfold the amount of good that would inevitably follow such an act as that of sur- rendering himself wholly to Jesus Christ. How many of his neighbors seem to be watching him closely, are fully convinced of the truth of the positions we have presented, and are only waiting for some one to take the first step! Possibly, a great army, composed of the ' bravest of the brave,' is just ready to enlist and fight under the broad, star-gemmed banner of Prince Messiah." The resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead was with Rains a favorite theme, and on this he thought best to discourse. He believed that he was able to master all the apparent difficulties connected with this most important subject. In order to make sure work of it, however, he reviewed the whole ground anew, noting with care each step in the argu- ment. He was familiar with the usual objections brought forward and paraded against the truth of the resurrection, and had no fears in being able to remove them out of the way of those at least who were in search of truth. The discourse was delivered to a large and very attentive audience. One of the most attentive hearers was Dr. Winans himself. After meeting, Rains engaged in conversation with those who lingered for a time, and, after all were gone, he retired to his place of rest, followed by Dr. Winans, who manifested much more than his usual interest ir. the discourse. Rains sat before the fire musing, while the Doctor was walking the floor, his AYLETT RAINS. hands crossed behind him, evidently much agitated, being fully convinced of his duty, and summoning up courage to perform the grandest act of his life, but saying not a word. Finally he came forward and, grasping the hand of Rains, said: "Bro. Rains, will you take my confession that I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God " " Certainly," said Rains; " but you have already made the confession, Doctor, but do you believe with all your heart that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God " "I do," answered the Doctor, " and now I desire to go forthwith to the water and be baptized." "I have no objection," re- plied Rains, "to going with you to the water and baptizing you immediately, but your family at this late hour have retired, and so have your friends, who would be glad to see you baptized; besides, you have been a public sinner, and it would have a salutary effect upon your neighbors to witness your public renunciation of sin in being baptized. Let us put the matter off until morning." This was mutually agreed upon, and early in the morning it seemed as if the very birds had carried the news to town and vicinity, for multitudes came flocking along the paths leading to the place of baptism, until several hundred persons were present. After his baptism, on coming up out of the water, he put his hands together and, looking up to heaven, said, gently and with much feeling: "1 Thank God that I have been permitted to hear the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ." The following day, his wife and daughter, an only child, made the good confession and were baptized. The Doctor stood near the water's edge to receive them as they came up out of the bap- 43 44 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. tismal font. Before the benediction was pronounced, the Doctor, standing close to his wife and daughter put his hands together, as formerly, and, with deep emotion, his face wet with tears, said: " Thank God that the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ has been introduced into my family." The Doctor and wife lived many years, and were faithful members of the church. They have passed over the dark river, and are at rest forever. A few years ago the daughter was living in Covington, Ky., a faithful disciple of Christ. In the year 1829, Alexander Campbell, of Bethany, Va., and Robert Owen, of New Lanark, Scotland, held a public discussion in Cincinnati, Mr. Owen affirming that " all the religions of the world have been founded upon the ignorance of mankind; that they are directly opposed to the never-changing laws of our nature; that they have been and are the real source of vice, disunion and misery of every description; . . and that they can be no longer maintained, except through the ignorance of the mass of the people, and the tyranny of the few over that mass." On the con- trary, Mr. Campbell proposed to show, from undoubt- ed testimony, that God in the Old and new Testaments has made a revelation of his will to mankind. Much excitement prevailed in parts of the United States because of the " reputation of the disputants " and the momentous questions to be discussed. Many persons were in attendance from New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Tennessee and Kentucky.- Daily hundreds were turned away from the door of the large meeting house where the debate was held. Among those who AYLETT RAINS. felt compelled to attend this memorable debate was Aylett Rains. As the hour for the debate to begin approached, he walked over and entered the meeting house, and found, to his astonishment, that it was densely packed. He stood in one of the aisles and near Mr. Owen, and therefore had a good opportunity to note the appearance and manner of the man. No one could look at him, even for a moment, without being much impressed with the apparent manliness of the man, with his fine person, well-developed and well-proportioned. And then his hair was cued and powdered according to the custom of the aristocratic portion of society in his native land. His dress was plain and neat,,fitting him with remarkable exactness. There was a sort of nobility in his bearing before the great congregation, every movement being full of ease and grace, indicating the well-bred gentleman. In speaking, he was exceedingly cool, very deliberate, and self-possessed in a remarkable degree, possessing not one of the arts or tricks of the would-be orator. He had not been speaking five minutes when Rains felt fully satisfied that he relied wholly for success on what he conceived to be truth, fact, argument. His first speech contains an account of the causes leading to the debate, general statements in regard to the ter- rible evils to be found in the social system, together with hints as to the remedies to be applied by him and his co-adjutors in order that virtue, intelligence and perfect happiness shall prevail over the whole earth. Rains listened intently until Mr. Owen had finished his first address, and was about to give place to Mr. Campbell, when he said to himself: "Mr. 45 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. Campbell will never be able to answer that speech; it can never be overthrown; the arguments are logic- ally faultless-simply invulnerable." Why he said this he could not have told; how he reached such a conclusion is marvelous, because Owen was not, by any means, a close reasoner. Possibly this conception of Rains' was the result of circumstances. The clergy in New Orleans would not meet Mr. Owen-seemed afraid of him. Some conceived that Mr. Campbell had rashly accepted his proposition to debate, while others imagined that Christianity would receive a blow from which it would not soon recover. As these, or kin- dred thoughts, flashed through the mind of Rains, his heart almost sank within hm. He was scarcely able to stand up, so full of fear as to consequences. He said to himself: "What will Mr. Campbell do- What can he do Must the Bible, which has stood for ages as a monument of truth, defying all the powers of darkness, must this Book of all books go down, and with it be buried forever the most exultant hopes of the human race" Standing up in reply, Mr. Campbell held in his right hand a small slip of paper, containing, perhaps, notes of his address. Ever and anon he glanced at this, and then, quick as thought, he would throw his band down to his side. With the forefinger of his left hand he was unconsciously engaged in twirling the hair round his ear. His utterance was very rapid, the interest he manifested far more than ordinary. In regard to Christianity he said: " It offered no lure to the ambitious; no reward to the avaricious. . . It called for self-denial, humility,patience and courage 46 AYLETT RAINS. on the part of all its advocates." . . In closing this extraordinary speech he uses these words: " But we cannot sit down without admonishing you to bear constantly in mind the inconceivable and ineffable importance attached to the investigation. It is not the ordinary affairs of this life, the fleeting and tran- sitory concerns of to-day or to-morrow; it is not whether we shall live all freemen, or die all slaves; it is not the momentary affairs of empire, or the evan- escent charms of dominion. Nay, indeed, these are but the toys of childhood, the sportive excursions of youthful fancy, contrasted with the questions: What is man Whence came he Whither does he go Is he a mortal or an immortal being . . . . After a few short days are fled, when the enjoyments of life are over, when our relish for social enjoyment, and our desires for returning to the fountain of life are most acute; must we hang our head and close our eyes on the desolating and appalling prospect of never opening them again, of never tasting the sweet, for which a state of discipline and trial has so well fitted us These are the awful and sublime merits of the question at issue. 'Shall spring ever visit the mouldering urn9 Shall day ever dawn on the night of the grave"' When Mr. Campbell sat down, Rains found that his cheeks were moistened with tears, because of which he 'was not a little vexed with himself. Putting his hand to his face, he attempted to wipe away the falling, the unmanly tears. "How weak, how childish am I," he said to himself. " I will be a man. I will not stand here before this people and weep as a child. No, no; 47 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. I will not do so." Just then he looked round over the vast assembly of more than twelve hundred persons. And what a spectacle presented itself to him-every- body in tears. He then said to himself: "I am in first-class company. I have just listened to a greater speech by odds than that delivered by Mr. Owen. Alexander Campbell is henceforth Alexander the Great. He can answer Mr. Owen or any other infidel on earth; he can and will crush infidelity and save the Bible to mankind." For several years prior to his death, Aylett Rains was not pleased with the tendency of certain matters in the current Reformation, and wrote a number of pungent articles for the "American Christian Review," which some disciples still living may recollect having read. In these "Warnings" he alluded to the fact that there were being introduced into church worship cer- tain innovations, under the mild name of expedients, which were not in harmony with " the Plea," and in direct opposition to the simplicity of the Gospel. He greatly deplored this state of things, and warned his brethren against "innovations," "expedients," and many unwarranted helps, so called. As a preacher he had but few equals in the current Reformation. Being well informed as to the teaching of the Old and New Testaments; understanding per- fectly orthodoxy and denominationalism, he was pre- pared to present to the people the claims of Christian- ity, and to overthrow and utterly demolish human theories and human dogma. In opposing error, he had but little mercy on its advocates. At.one time he 48 AYLETT RAINS. had been in the mist and fog, groping his way in darkness. When he came to see the light, to know the right way, he was by no means gentle in denounc- ing the conduct of the leaders of the people who were constantly perverting the truth, or darkening the coun- sel of God. As a logical, scriptural reasoner, he was pre-eminent. I heard President James Shannon say that he heard him deliver eighteen discourses by way of unfolding the great Plan of Redemption as taught by Christ and his apostles, and that, in his opinion, Alexander Campbell had never preached or written anything more clear, convincing or exhaustive. And President Shannon was an impartial and competent judge. His father had removed to Kentucky, and was living near the Ohio River. Young Rains, being pretty well versed in the common English branches, concluded to teach a school. He crossed the river into Clark county, Ind., and near Bethlehem opened a school. Ie had preached Restorationism in parts of Kentucky, and it was soon known among his patrons and his pupils that he was a preacher, and now he must hold forth for the people especially the young people-and set forth his peculiar views as to the salvation of mankind. "Accordingly a stand was erected in a grove near by, and seats prepared to accommodate four or five hun- dred persons. At the appointed hour a very large audience had assembled. The young preacher felt flattered by the presence of so large a concourse of persons, and was holding the congregation spellbound by his, eloquence upon the infinite love of God, when a young man largely under the influence of liquor, be- 49 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. came an interested listener. As his interest increased he became more eager to hear, and gradually pushed his way to the front of the stand, and putting his left arm around a small sapling, leaned forward in rapt attention. He soon became so deeply moved that, not knowing what he was doing, he stretched his free hand in the direction of the speaker, and in maudlin tones exclaimed: 'Make it o-u-t, young m-a-n! make it o-u-t, young man ! If you don't I'm a goner! !!' This amused the crowd, and disconcerted the speaker, so much so that he never fully recovered his equanimity. This young man, as Bro. Rains afterward confessed, had driven a nail into a sure place. It awakened a train of thought, and excited misgivings as to the truth of the views he was then advocating, which were never altogether allayed, until he became a preacher of the full gospel of the grace of God." Bro. Rains could not be readily manipulated by the evolutions, or convolutions, of the professional revival- ist. Clerical tricks, by whomsoever, he looked upon with supreme contempt. The following speaks for itself: " When the celebrated John Newland Maffitt, whose brief, brilliant, disastrous career excited the 'wonder of an hour,' was in Paris, Ky., Bro. Rains went to hear him. At the conclusion of his discourse, Maffitt began the mninisterial tactics, so common in that day, of put- ting his audience through the popular camp-meeting drill. He commenced by asking all who wished God to revive his work in that town to stand up. About half the congregation arose to their feet. He made a second appeal to them to stand up and thus encourage 50 AYLETT RAINS. the Lord to revive his work. This time a few more arose. Bro. Rains sat firmly in his place, not far from the speaker. Maffitt made a third attempt to bring his audience to their feet, and looking directly at Rains, said, ' Can it be possible that any man, with the com- mon feelings of humanity in his bosom, is so lost to all interest in and sympathy for his fellow beings that he will refuse to vote for God to revive his work in this community' Elder Rains compressed his lips, looked at the preacher defiantly, and kept his seat. After a few more attempts to manipulate his audience Maffitt dismissed his congregation. Sister Eads, one of Bro. Rains' members in the Paris congregation, said to him loud enough for Maffitt to hear, 'Bro. Rains, why did you not stand up' 'Ah, sister,' he replied, in a sharp, rasping tone of voice, ' simply because I do not muster in that regiment.' Maffitt heard him, and colored deeply." Aylett Rains was born in Spottsylvania county, Va., January 22d, 1788, and died September 7th, 1881, at the residence of his son-in-law, President W: S. Gilt- ner, Eminence, Ky. Bro. Rains had preached for the church in Paris, Ky., 28 years; for the church in Win- chester 28 years, and for the church in North Middle- town 26 years. He died suddenly. While sitting in his chair listening to his granddaughter, Miss Giltner, read, his head fell upon his breast. She gave the alarm immediately, and as soon as possible he was placed upon a couch, but never uttered a word after- ward. For more than fifty years he had been a preacher of the Gospel of Christ. He was true to the Lord Jesus Christ; was a kind and affectionate hus- 51 52 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH, band, father and friend. He died as he had lived- strong in the faith. CHAPTER III. JOHN T. JOHNSON. FIRST SEEING HIM-TALKING OF CHRIST-ZEAL--CHAR- ACTERISTICS. It was in the winter of 1852-'3, at the residence of Elder W. C. Holton, Mason county, Ky., I first saw Elder John T. Johnson. He was there for the purpose of holding a protracted meeeting with the church of Beasley Creek. He was clad in a suit of black broad- cloth, and wore a black fur cap. He was severely polite, and in every movement the gallant Christian gentleman. Not many words were spoken until he entered into a lively conversation as to the prospects for a success- ful meeting. On this he talked with very considerable animation for some time. It was clear to all who heard him that the conversion of sinners was the theme nearest his heart, and on which most of all he delighted to discourse. The Beasley Creek meeting was a pleasant and successful one. In his fervent exhortations he often alluded to his wife and children in Heaven, and that he would soon be there and meet them. Bro. James Challen, of Cincinnati, hearing him thus speak of his wife and children, delicately remarked to him: " Bro. Johnson, I feel to rejoice that your wife and children are in the mansions of the blest. It will no doubt be the means of saving many souls." RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. From Beasley Creek we went to the town of Minerva, three or four miles westward, and began a meeting. This meeting was not conducted according to Bro. Johnson's views of propriety. He thought it best in conducting a protracted meeting that the preacher, be he great or small, beginning the meeting, should dis- course to the people day and night without interrup- tion; then the same one to follow in exhortation the same preacher continually. This was his view, and it was not a bad one. But among the several preachers coming to see and to hear, one or two were invited to preach, and were imprudent enough to do so. There are to be found in almost every church a few inconsiderate ones, whose curiosity must be gratified. So it was at the Minerva church, and Bro. Johnson was not allowed to conduct the meeting as he desired, but must submit to the ruling of others for the sake of peace. Besides, one or two members of the church-men-of considerable influence-mounted their horses and rode off else- where, to engage in temporal affairs, in which they were more interested than in saving souls, or in reviv- ing the church. Then again, comparisons were made during the meeting as to the ability or eloquence of the respective speakers. The sentiments of the com- munity were much divided. The leading object of the meeting-to save the people from their sins-being kept almost entirely out of view, but little visible good resulted. At Germantown, the next place we held meeting, things were greatly changed. The first night Bro. Johnson spoke he was greeted with a large and entha- 54 JOHN T. JOHNSON. siastic audience. The attention was fine, the singing inspiring, and John T. Johnson was himself. Some one has said that eloquent hearers make an eloquent speaker. Well, the hearers were eloquent, first, last and all the time, and the preacher grew stronger and more powerful to the close. At the conclusion of one of his evening meetings, the speaker, throwing his arms round his body and clasping his frail form, exhorted with such energy and warmth that the light about his face became appar- ently a glowing halo. Inviting sinners to come for- ward and confess Christ, he stepped down and stood in front of the -pulpit to receive them. The whole house seemed to be crowding toward him. It was dif- ficult to find seats for all. Many confessed Christ that memorable night. John T. Johnson was truly in his element-happier than had he been crowned a king. The time having arrived for going to the town of Washington for the purpose of beginning another meeting, I was sent ahead to commence the work and await the coming of the commander-in chief. The interest was such that Bro. Johnson -was compelled to remain a short time and finish his great work at Ger- mantown. But in a day or two on came the eminent evangelist, through snow and rain and mud, weary and wayworn, but neither cast down nor discouraged. A few, hearing, believed and were baptized. During the meeting at Washington, Elder John Young, at that time pastor of the Christian Church at Maysville, was occasionally with us. We got along pleasantly until there arose between him and Bro. Johnson a spirited conversation as to the manner in 55 be RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. which Bro. Campbell was dealing with the heresy, or post- mortem gospel, of Jesse B. Ferguson, of Nash- ville, Tenn. Ferguson was one of the most eloquent preachers in the ranks of the Reformation at that time. Holding in his hand the "Millennial Harbin- ger," and quoting a line or two at a time from it, in the precise words of Mr. Campbell, Bro. Young would enquire now and then of Bro. Johnson, "Would you take this position" "Would you say this of J. B. Ferguson" "Would you be so intoler- ant" Bro. Johnson promptly answering that he would not. Bro. Young, having continued this sort of mancou- vering for some time, remarked that he had just re- ceived the "Millennial Harbinger" for March, and would read some of the strictures of Mr. Campbell which he considered entirely too severe. Bro. John- son, readjusting himself in his chair, was about to offer some remarks, when Bro. Young began to read. He slowly read the entire article to the company. All listened with marked attention. I kept my eye on Bro. Johnson, who seemed inclined now and then to rise up from his chair. Still he sat as quietly as pos- sible, noting all that Bro. Campbell had to say. When Bro. Young came to the following words in the article, Bro. Johnson appeared to be nodding assent to every word: " Have we no discipline no tribunal no mental independence 'Must we have all sorts of opin- ions, of doctrines, of religious romance, preached, writ- ten, printed and published to the world, and never call the propagators to account, but bolster them up, flatter their vanity, and pander to their pride and am- bition ! If offences must come, let us meet them like JOHN T. JOHNSON. men that fear God, honor the Bible, and love the truth of God. I can never sympathize with Protestant popery nor Protestant purgatory, in any form in which either may be served up. While I would earnestly contend for the faith formerly delivered to the saints, I lord it over no people, nor church, nor community. I plead for a political tolerance of popery, prelacy, Sweden- borgianism-nay, for the tolerance of deism, theism, and even atheism. But I cannot commune at the Lord's table with any of them. We neutralize the Gospel, we make void the grace of God, by a latitudi- narian apathy, and by pimping and pandering to the vanity, the waywardness and the opinionism of vision- aries and headstrong propagandists. I have, in com- mon with everyfintelligent brother that I have either seen or heard from, in the Union, bewailed this blight- ing dogmatism, this leprous spot, this gangrene, which I have from its first utterance regarded as a funeral knell to the man that obtruded it upon us, as if to try our credulity or test our love of principle. Many brethren mnourn-I do not know one that does not mourn-over this apostasy. I say many brethren have lamented our apparent want of firmness, or our sinful yielding to such dogmatism. 'I am, therefore, most reluctantly compelled to throw myself into the breach. I thank God that I have courage to hazard all its con- sequences, and to test, with all its hazards, whether we can, as a community, maintain the truth and Chris- tian discipline, according to our stand and the New Testament." Bro. Young, turning to Bro. Johnson, remarked, with an air of triumph: " So, you perceive, my broth- 5 57. 58 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. er, that you have condemned Bro. Campbell; for the very things you would not say against Mr. Ferguson, Mr. Campbell has said, and with a vengeahce." Bro. Johnson instantly replied, and with more than his usual curtness: "You have deceived me; I did not think this of you. I now take back all I have said as to what I would or would not affirm in regard to the heresy of J. B. Ferguson, and declare that Bro. Campbell is right. I accept all his utterances, word for word. It appears to me that you have attempted to trick me. You have questioned me with the ' Har- binger' in your hand, knowing, doubtless, Bro. Camp- bell's positions. This is indeed very offensive to me." Bro. Young stoutly denied the charge, and denounc- ed Bro. Campbell in unmeasured terms, for what he conceived to be intolerance toward J. B. Ferguson. Bro. Johnson, on the other hand, defended him with spirit, and if not in language the mildest, at least in such that could be easily understood. Bro. Young asserted that Mr. Campbell was not consistent; that he had in years gone by allowed persons in the church to hold whatever opinions they might choose; but now Jesse B. Ferguson must either give up these harmless opinions or views, or forever abandon the church. Bro. Johnson retorted vehemently: " You have mis- represented Mr. Campbell. He is not inconsistent- not at all. On the contrary, he is willing for any brother to hold any opinion, only he must not preach it, or publicly enforce it. By so doing he will create strife, injure the cause of Christ. Mr. Ferguson be- lieves the Gospel will be preached to the spirits in the Unseen World-that they will be permitted to believe, JOHN T. JOHNSON. obey and be saved. It is not, with him, an opinion; it is more. He is preaching this-it is with him, per- haps, a hobby-and by preaching it, contending for it, he is deceiving good people-the very elect-and his mouth must be stopped. Were it merely an opin- ion! still he is doing a great wrong in proclaiming it from the pulpit, in defending it in his paper. He is a heretic of the deepest dye. Let him show his colors, sail under his proper flag, not remain with us when he must know he is not of us." This conversation, or debate, continued for some time, when both the disputants referred some matters to a brother in the company for adjustment, when it ceased. These good, brothers, after this "sharp con- tention," separated, if not in anger, at least with no very pleasant feelings toward each other. Bro. Johnson directed his course, in the afternoon of the same day, toward Lawrence Creek church. four or five miles distant, for the purpose of beginning anoth- er meeting. Bro. Young and I rode in company to his home in Maysville, where I remained with him a short time, looking over his large library, and selecting a few choice books, which I purchased. On our way to Maysville we traveled slowly and talked much. I ascertained that he was rationalistic in his views, ac- cepting the Word of God as our only rule of faith and practice; but some things in the Old and New Testa- ments puzzled him not a little. I understand that he died not long since, strong in the faith. In our talk he admitted that he had wronged Bro. Johnson, and desired me to say as much to him, and, still further and better, that he was heartily ashamed of the whole 59 60 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. affair-was indeed very much mortified, and wished to be forgiven. That same evening I joined Bro. Johnson, and laid before him all that Bro. Young had said. He heard me through without a word, but I could see that the fountains of the great deep in his soul were broken up. Standing up before me and wiping the tears from his face, he remarked, with his wonted emphasis: "By the grace of God, I will, of course, forgive him. We both did wrong. I know I did. I was too hasty, too severe. I forgive him-absolutely I do. Hope he will forgive me." The following day Bro. Young came to the meeting. Before the time arrived for preaching, we all three walked in silence to a grove not far off, and I was permitted to witness certain things that greatly affected me. To see these two servants of the Lord Jesus Christ approach each other, warmly grasp each other by the hand, and in tears and broken ac- cents ask and receive forgiveness, was worth, to me, far more than to behold the triumphant entry of a conquering king into the capital of his dominions. The spirit of Christ was in both of them, and hence they were enabled to do that which is more blessed, more endaring, than all the proud achievements of the potentates of this world. After the conclusion of the pleasant meeting at Lawrence Creek, Bro. Johnson went to Mays Lick to enlist soldiers under the banner of the great Captain whom he dearly loved and so faithfully served. He never rested-was ever at work -ever up and doing day and night. At Mays Lick he was joined by Elisha Y. Pinkerton, one of the most eloquent young preachers of that day. His sermons JOHN T. JOHNSON. were like a beautiful song, full of sweetest melody. ,,His face was full of intelligence-radiant with the light of heaven. He has crossed over and joined the redeemed. In the autumn of 1856 the State Convention was held in Louisville, Ky. Of those present I now recall the names of the following preachers, viz.: P. S. Fall, Aylett Rains, R. C. Rice, R. C. Ricketts, D. Pat. Hender- son, Jno. T. Johnson, Samuel Ayers, etc. At that conven- tion a good brother urged most zealously the importance of organizing an ecclesiastical council, or synod, pos- sessing just a little more authority, or power, than was deemed scriptural or allowable according to the views of the valiant pioneers of this religious movement. The brother, in presenting this project to the meeting, was most gracious and condescending. He smiled, he bowed, in his earnest plea in favor of said council. Still the views of this most intelligent and pious brother were not looked upon with favor by any min- ister in the convention. notwithstanding the plausible reasoning with which they were enforced. Well do I remember the firm stand taken by the preachers in that convention against that aforesaid ecclesiastical court. These men had lately been in bondage, but were now in the enjoyment of Christian freedom, which they appreciated and resolved should not be in- terfered with. John T. Johnson, may I be allowed to say, was bitterly opposed to this organization. How- ever, he preferred to hear from others, whom he en- dorsed most heartily. With much feeling, but with great deliberation, he said he hoped his brethren would not in bis day inaugurate anything of the kild 61 62 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. proposed by the brother. "Wait," he continued, "until this form lies low beneath the sod. While liv- ing, I desire not to see the churches lorded over by any council or synod." The scheme, whether good, bad or indifferent, was not adopted; nor is there much danger that any plan of a like character will ever be seriously advocated among the Disciples of Christ, or put into successful operation by individuals or church- es. Too much light, too much freedom, and, may we not truthfully affirm, too much of the spirit of Mary's Son and Israel's King among us ever to allow the Lord's people to go back to the fleshpots of Egypt. While Bro. Johnson was engaged in holding his meeting at Washington, Mason county, Ky., we visited the old weather-beaten meeting-house in which Alex- ander Campbell and Wm. L. McCalla held their debate October, 1823. We walked around the dingy, shattered building, surrounded by the graves of those of anoth- er generation. Scraping the moss away from the mar- ble slabs, you might read the names of those who slept thee'last, cold sleep of death. There rested in "undisturbed repose" the mortal remains of many a bold pioneer of the " dark and bloody ground "-men who had doubtless associated with Daniel Boone, Si- mon Kenton, and others, in their deeds of daring against the red man of the forest. Here and there -might be seen inscribed on the mar- ble shaft a touching stanza from some sacred song of other days, or an appropriate line from the Christian Scriptures, revealing the character of the departed, or indicating the cheering hope of immortality beyond the grave. In conversing with several elderly persons JOHN T. JOHNSON. who had attended the Campbell and McCalla debate, we noted the fact that Mr. Campbell had profoundly impressed them with his manly bearing and Christian deportment, not only toward the people at large, who heard him gladly, but also toward his opponent, who was himself a fine scholar and Christian gentleman. One fact, no doubt, contributed no little to Mr. Camp- bell's success in the discussion, viz., that he never read from manuscript, as did Mr. McCalla, but spoke from the fullness of head and heart, looking straight into the faces of his hearers. Elder Jeremiah Vardeman, the most popular and influential Baptist preacher in Kentucky at that time, was Mr. Campbell's moderator; Mr. Birch was Mr. McCalla's, Judge Roper, of Flem- ingsburg, presiding. Judge Roper, it is said, enter- tained such a high opinion of the discriminating power, the logical ability of Mr. Campbell, that he stated at the conclusion of the debate that if Mr. Campbell should affirm that a crow was white, he would be unwilling to enter the list against him and attempt to prove to the contrary. Mr. Campbell, when he held the discussion with Wm. L. McCalla, was a member of the Baptist Church, and understood not the plan of salvation as he did in after life. He did not understand the " ancient order of things" at that time as he did at the close of the publication of the "Christian Baptist," or when he gave to the Christian world his celebrated "Extra on Remission of Sins." It is said that a distinguished Baptist preacher by the name of F , in the town of G , in Ken- tucky, resolved on a certain occasion to have a little 63 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. sport at the expense of Elder Raccoon John Smith. Standing on the corner of the street with his brethren, Elder F spied Bro. Smith slowly walking down the street toward them. Speaking to his Baptist friends, Elder F remarked: "Yonder comes Bro. Smith. When he comes up I propose to puzzle him with one of the many contradictions found in the writings and speeches of Alexander Campbell. He will never be able to reconcile or adjust it-mark what I say." " Look sharp," said one of his brethren; " that old man has never been outwitted or cornered in all his life; better let him alone." "Not a bit of dan- ger; will have a little pleasantry, and all at the ex- pense of Bro. Smith and others, his friends," said Elder F , very complacently. When Bro. Smith reached the crowd, a few words of greeting were ex- changed, and Elder F- thus introduced the mat- ter which he verily believed, no doubt, would result -in the complete discomfiture of Bro. Smith: " How does it come to pass," observed Elder F- , addressing Bro. Smith, "that Alexander Campbell in his debate with McCalla took the ground that Paul was really pardoned when he believed, but formally pardoned when he was baptized, and in his debate with Mr. Rice affirms, in substance, that no man is really par- doned until baptized Here is a glaring contradiction -an irreconcilable inconsistency. What will you do with it, my brother" Bro. Smith looked the Elder full in the face, and instantly replied: "When Alex- ander Campbell said that Paul was really pardoned when he believed and formally pardoned when bap- tized, he was then debating with Wm. L. McCalla in 64 JOHN T. JOHNSON. the year of our Lord 1823, was a member of the Bap- tist Church, and just about as big a fool as you are. Now, sir, any further contradictions If so, I am ready to reconcile them." The Baptist brethren roared with laughter, and Elder F- proposed no further puzzling questions on that occasion. In company with Elder R. C. Ricketts, a prominent preacher in Kentucky, John T. Johnson visited Little Rock, Ark., for the purpose of proclaiming the Gospel in its primitive purity and power. After the meeting had advanced a number of days, and quite a number of persons had become obedient to the faith, an incident occurred of more than ordina- ry interest, and which I feel ought to be preserved. Judge Johnson, of the city of Little Rock, a brother of the evangelist, a prominent politician, had been attending the meeting nightly with his wife, but neither belonged to any religious body. Like many others, Judge Johnson had never given the subject of Christianity very much thought; perhaps owing to the fact that he was constantly engaged in the affairs of this life, and had no time, as he supposed; it may have been that he knew not what to do, because of the many sad - divisions in Christendom. Through courtesy or curiosity, he and his amiable wife had been attending church and listening to the preaching of John T. Johnson and R. C. Ricketts. But sometimes it turns out that those who attend religious services through curiosity become deeply concerned for their souls' salvation. This was the case with the Judge and his wife at the time of which we are speaking, 65 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. although, I presume, neither would have acknowl- edged it. One morning after breakfast, seated in the parlor with his brother, John T., Elder Ricketts, and his wife, the. Judge filed several formidable objections to the course pursued by the preachers in the meeting they were then conducting. Of course he did this, be it understood, in the most polite manner possible; still, with honesty, and desiring, no doubt, that a change be made in the management of the meeting. When offering his advice, the Judge supposed he understood himself perfectly-knew precisely what he would do under given circumstances. But it is difficult to know one's self. It is certainly not an easy task to divine what the strongest minded persons would do under heavy pressure of circumstances. "The best of men are men at best." It would be well to remember this in all of our wise forecastings. The preachers had baptized several persons in the Arkansas River, and now the Judge had come to the conclusion that this ought to be stopped. And why Because the waters were too muddy in which to administer this divine or- dinance. "If I should ever be baptized," he contin- ued, "it will never occur in the Arkansas River. I will never go down into that muddy stream of water -never. I would prefer to go to a beautiful clear pool of water near the city, should I ever consent to be baptized. Besides, I seriously object to your ad- ministering the ordinance of baptism, while the law- yers, doctors, and the reckless ones about the city, are lining the banks of the river, and some are engaged in talking and laughing and making unbecoming remarks. 66 JOHN T. JOHNSON. This is certainly not in good taste-is certainly not in harmony with my views of propriety or good order. Under such circumstances I could not consent to be baptized. I must have pure, clear water, and only a few friends." "Very well," said Bro. Ricketts, "we will go with you and a few chosen friends to some clear pool and baptize you whenever you are willing to make the good confession-whenever you are preparec to sub- mit to this command of Christ." The Judge replied: " Understand me, [ am not say- ing that I ever intend to become a member of the church. I do not know that I will ever join any church. I am only telling you that I do not think it proper to baptize in the Arkansas River, and that I never could, under the circumstances, consent to be, as others have been. Again, should I ever join the church-and I may or may not-I trust to be able to control my feelings a little better than some who have come forward during this meeting and confessed faith in Christ. They'have shown great weakness in weep- ing like children-at least it seems so to me. Should I ever be induced to go forward and confess Christ, I hope I shall have manliness enough about me to do so without shedding a tear." "Come forward, Judge, in your own way; if you are a believing penitent, and fully prepared to obey the Gospel from the heart, in order to the enjoyment of all the blessings promised, we care not as to the manner," rejoined Bro. Ricketts. The following remarks were offered by the Judge in closing: "You and my brother may suppose from what I have said that I purpose becoming a member 67 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. of the church. I confess that I understand the teach- ing of Christ and the Apostles as I never did before. I see a fitness, beauty and adaptation in the plan of redemption which has been hid from me heretofore. But I have not at all determined to join the church. I am fully persuaded that it is the duty of all persons to attatch themselves to the church of Jesus Christ, but I am not prepared to say I am ready to do so now. I trust yon will not look upon what I have said to you as meddling; pursue your own course. Still, I am con- vinced that there is far too much feeling manifested by those who confess Christ and obey him in your meeting, and that you ought, if in your power, to suppress it." Bro. Ricketts added that he thought there was no improper excitement in the meeting. There had been no shouting, no clapping of hands, no swooning or fainting. No unjust means had been used to compel persons to become the disciples of Christ. The Gospel had been presented in its fullness, so far as the speak- ers were enabled to offer it to the people. "' This glo- rious Gospel is God's power to save those who believe and obey it, and, mark you, there is no power like it in this world. All persons are not alike in their make-up. Some, in renouncing sin, weep bitterly; others show but little feeling. This is owing to the difference in the emotional nature. And there is no need in our attempting to regulate these things; they must take their course. But few persons know them- selves." The following night the Judge and his wife came to church and sat a little nearer the pulpit than usual, the wife placing herself on the end of the 68 JOHN T. JOHNSON. bench and next the aisle; the Judge occupying a place near -the centre of the house and directly in front of the pulpit. At the conclusion of the discourse, and while the invitation song was being sung, the Judge's wife stepped forward and gave her hand to Bro. Rick- etts. She took her seat on the front bench preparato- ry to making the good confession. The Judge, seeing this, could bear up no longer; so, stepping right over the benches, forward he came, and, weeping as a child, seated himself beside his wife, the great tears rolling down his furrowed cheeks. Making the good confes- sion with much feeling, he remarked in the hearing of many, " I am now ready to go down into the muddy waters of the Arkansas and be baptized in the pres- ence of the lawyers, doctors, and all who may be in- clined to witness my obedience to the faith." How few know themselves. At the age of 35 or 36 his health failed him, and, be- coming weak and emaciated, it was deemed advisable to call in his family physician. The doctor, having made a thorough examination of his case, told him plainly that tobacco was gradually but surely under- mining his constitution, and must in a short time, unless abandoned, end his days on earth. At the time the doctor said this to him, he had in his pocket a large piece of tobacco, which he had been using. Going into the parlor alone, and holding this plug in his hand, he thus talked to himself: "John T. John- son is sick-unfitted for business-is, in fact, dying- must soon leave all and go to his grave. What is killing him The use of this poisonous weed I hold in my hand." He laid it up on the mantel-piece, and, 69 70 RECOLLECTIONS OF KEN OF FAITH. fixing his eyes intently on it for a few moments, con- tinued his soliloquy. "You have been and are now my mortal enemy; to-day we part forever. Remain where you are, I adjure you. I'll never touch you again-never, God being my helper." And by the help of God, John T. Johnson kept his word to the day of his death. His health so improved that he be- came stronger day by day, until he could do more hard work than ever before. The following incident is jotted down and offered to the rising generation for what it may be worth. Perhaps the eye of some frail young preacher may fall on it-some one given to the use of tobacco-and good may ensue. "A word in season is like apples of gold in pictures of silver." The company had just returned from evening meet- ing, and were cozily seated around a large blazing fire at the residence of W. C. Holton. A young preacher, who formed part of the happy group, was engaged in chewing tobacco about as vigorously as was allowable in respectable society. Ever and anon he arose, and, walking within the spitting distance, would spurt a mouthful of filthy ambier into the fire. This occurred so frequently that Bro. Johnson, keeping his eye con- stantly fixed on him, and growing impatient, could hold his peace no longer, but inquired sharply, " Why, my young brother, are you getting up and spitting into the fire so frequently" "Oh, nothing; only chewing a little tobacco, and am compelled to spit; that's all; nothing more," was the ready reply returned. Turn- ing round, he- thus addressed the young ladies: "Have nothing to do with a young man who is in the JOHN T. JOHNSON. habit of chewing or smoking tobacco. While it is possible for him to be a gentleman or a Christian while engaged in such a filthy practice, it is barely so; for tobacco not only injures the brain and heart, undermines the constitution and ruins the health, but it robs God of years that might be devoted to his service, by leading its victim to an untimely grave. I am sorry to say it-I blush to speak it-I was once a slave to the use of tobacco, and know what I affirm to be true, every word. Young ladies, I beg you, be- ware of such young men-for your sakes, but especial- ly for theirs." At the conclusion of this brief philippic, there came from the little group of hearers a burst of laughter, loud and prolonged. This over, Elder John- son, turning to the young preacher, beheld him crim- soned with shame, or embarrassment, or what you Ailay please to call it, and in the kindness of a bene- factor or friend, but with the firmness of a judge, said: "i Now, my dear young brother, will you forever quit tobacco Will you just take that chew out of your mouth and throw it behind the back-log, and never put another into your mouth-never, as long as you live!" No sooner said than it was done, amid cheers of "Good, good;" "That's right;" "Well done, well done;" "Stick to it if it kills you." But this was not all. Elder Johnson added: "I will now write good news to your father. I will tell him how nobly his son has acted-that he is now a new man- is now every inch a free man." This he did, and for years the young preacher refrained from the use of tobacco altogether, and confessed that he received much benefit in not touching' the noxious weed. 71 72 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. Preaching Christ and him crucified was, with him, first in this world. Next to this was the endowment of the Midway Orphan School. Dr. L. L. Pinkerton had founded this benevolent institution, and was as- sisting, so far as enabled, in building it up, but Wm. Parish, one of the purest spirits in the church, was devoting his entire time to its interests. Bro. Wm. Patterson contributed in word and in deed to its ad- vancement. Bro. Johnson never failed, in speaking of this school, to refer to the self-denying labors of these brethren, whom he esteemed very highly. At the close of each protracted meeting, he laid before the church the character of this school and what had already been done for the orphan. Now and then a touching incident was woven into his remarks, with wonderful effect. One I remember. A Bro. B- , living in the bluegrass regions of Kentucky, supposed to possess fine property, when called upon to assist in the endow- ment of this institution, flatly refused, saying he was able to educate his own family, and thought every man should do the same-that there was no need for the school. He died shortly after this refusal, and those administering on his estate reported that he was worth nothing. His wife, aided by kind friends, placed two or three of her little girls in the Orphan School, that they might obtain an education. Thus by a sud- den turn of the wheel of fortune, the rich are made poor, and those with plenty find themselves reduced to penury. As stated above, he never failed to present the claims of this school to each church for which he held a meeting. Nor did'he stand before his brethren as a JOHN T. JOHNSON. beggar. It was the Lord's work, and his people were permitted to assist as co-workers in doing good. A glorious privilege indeed, in being allowed to extend a helping had to such a benevolent enterprise. I see him now, standing up with a full heart in the midst of the great congregation in behalf of the homeless, houseless ones, often exposed to temptation, often doomed to fearful hardships, or crushed beneath heavy burdens. It is needless to say that his simple pleading was full of genuine eloquence-for who could not be eloquent under such circumstances Nor did he appeal in vain to the noble and generous men and women of Kentucky. Never, in a single instance that I now remember, did he fail to receive cash contribu- tions or notes payable in bank without defalcation or discount. We see him no more. His bright eye is closed in death; his frail form mouldered to dust; his shrill, stirring voice hushed forever. But he is still living in his works, which remain as monuments of his love to the poor, the needy, the helpless. It is declared in the New Testament that the early Christians took joyfully the spoiling of their goods. They rejoiced that they were counted worthy to sacri- fice and to suffer for their King. Not, I presume to say, that they courted tribulation; but that in all their trials and buffetings they were filled with exceeding great joy, that, in their nothingness, they could boast of being co-workers with God, possessing the spirit of Christ and the glorious hope of immortality and life eternal. John T. Johnson was not given to complain- ing of his poverty or hard lot; was not in the habit of looking back over past hardships regretfully. He 6 73 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. loved Christ Jesus with his whole heart; was proud that he was accounted worthy to stand up in the sacred desk for Him who had poured out his life's blood for him, for his wife, his children, his neighbors, his friends, enemies-in fact, for the whole world. To him, to live was to work for Christ. Had he not been permitted to preach Christ and him crucified, life to himn would have been a signal failure. Deep down in his soul there dwelt an ardent desire, a burning zeal, to seek and to save the lost of earth. He must go forth into the broad field and sow the good seed of the Kingdom, unfold the matchless plan of salvation, open the prison doors and let the captives frea. With him, preaching was not a profession such as that of the law, medicine or teaching. Those are of the earth, earthy; are bounded by time; often in these self is first. He had seriously pondered the whole matter; had chosen preaching as a life work, not to be aban- doned because of any trials whatsoever; not to be set aside for place or power, ease or pleasure, wealth or fame; but to be followed from love to Christ and to a perishing world, till death should open the gate and call him to a higher sphere of action. John T. John- son never made any preparation for the delivery of his discourses. The only thing looking in that direc- tion was the jotting down in small blank-books a few touching or stirring incidents, or extracts from leading men in the Christian world, on themes agitating at that time the minds of the people in the bounds of his labors. Many a time have I heard him read these incidents or pointed extracts from the pulpit with tell- ing effect, with a solemnity and energy that defies de- 74 JOHN T. JOHNSON. scription. He was thoroughly informed in regard to all the leading questions of his day, and these had been closely investigated in the light of the Word of God. He was so perfectly familiar with this reforma- tory movement, in letter and in spirit; so intimately acquainted with the genius and spirit of Christianity, that he was never at a loss to give an answer to every one who asked him a reason of the hope entertained, with meekness and fear. It was impossible for him to reproduce his discourses, inasmuch as he never preached from notes, and invariably presented to his hearers only such Gospel truths, facts or principles as the occasion or the wants of the people demanded. Hearing of the least difficulty in the mind of any one attending his meetings, he was ever prepared, and promptly set to work, to remove it. He was the read- iest preacher I ever knew, at no time off his guard, neither puzzled nor perplexed by any knotty question of theology that might be mooted. If he could not untie the gordian knot, he could at least imitate Alex- ander the Great-cut it. But who can accurately por- tray his preaching, in matter or manner One of the striking features in the preaching of this indefatigable evangelist was his profound reverence for the Word of God. While he was untiring in his zeal to convert sinners, earnest to such a degree that self was lost sight of; yet all this zeal, all this unaffected earnest- ness, was thrown into the background by his devotion to the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, as it is found in the Old and New Testament Scriptures. He could not tolerate for one moment any view, however plausible it might appear, which was 75 76 BECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. adverse to the supernatural origin of the whole Bible. All the books, from Genesis to the Revelation of John, were inspired, and no argument, however ingen- iously contrived, could convince him to the contrary. Standing here, he could say: "Come one,'come all; this rock shall fly, From its firm base, as soon as I." Had he lived in the days of bloody Mary, he would have died, as did Ridly or John Rogers, for the truth as it is in Jesus. The world to him was a great battle- ground, and life a fearful battle for the crown of im- mortality. You felt, in hearing him denounce some sin or sins from the pulpit, that he was engaged in mortal combat against some dire foe standing right before him. No time for looking to the right or to the left, in this hand to hand conflict; no time for parley- ing, for diversion, for resting; but blows heavier and faster must be dealt, with merciless energy, on the head of the enemy. His shrill voice thrilled every nervous fibre, and filled the soul with a dauntless courage, as it rang out in trumpet peals to the charge upon the opposing forces. Hearing him earnestly dis- course, you conceived that he was under marching or- ders from the King of kings-orders that must be in- stantly and faithfully obeyed. Exceedingly plain in speech, using but few adjectives; most earnest and solemn, never attempting to provoke a smile or create mirth, and very emphatic at times. Looking around at each of his hearers, he seemed to know intuitively his thoughts and the emotions of his heart-whether he was saint or sinner, and whether he was or was not JOHN T. JOHNSON. receiving with favor what he said. When he closed, and desired an invitation song to be sung, it must be done immediately, without a moment's delay. Once, I remember, when the leader failed to start the song at the right time, he exclaimed vehemently: "Breth- ren, sing! Don't wait until the effect of my sermon is lost." He was direct in all he said. No circumlocu- tion in reaching a point; no manaeuvering in making the attack; but instead he fearlessly, gallantly plunged into the thickest of the fight. He never attempted ornamentation in any speech he ever made, the most practical preacher in his day; never quoted a line of poetry in any of his discourses; no allusion at any time or under any circumstances to the beautiful, pa- thetic or sublime in the Old or New Testament. To enlist soldiers in the army of God; to make them feel that they must fight these battles of their King, through the serried ranks of enemies, till death, and that, living or dying, this is the one purpose of life- this, to John T. Johnson, was all and in all; this was his mission among men, and in this he gloried.. He could exclaim in his last moments, as did the great Apostle to the Gentiles, " I have fought the good fight; I have finished the course; I have kept the faith." 77 CHAPTER V. B. F. HALL. IN DANVILLE, KY.-IN MEXPHIS-INCONSISTENMIES- AMBITION-POWER IN PULPIT. In the year of our Lord 1848, I was attending school in the town of Harrodsburg, Ky., and boarding with Prof. Samuel Hatch. He had in some way learned that Dr. B. F. Hall would preach on a certain Lord's day in Danville, Ky. On the morning of that day, quite early, Prof. Hatch and myself were on our way expressly to hear the Doctor. We arrived in good time. Although the Doctor had frequently been at my father's house, I had no recollection of ever having seen him. When introduced to him he was full of smiles and cordial greetings-much more so, I am inclined to believe, than at any subsequent period of his life. He was, I presume, full six feet in height, well proportioned, weighing not less than two hundred pounds avoirdupois. He was very active in his move- ments, exceedingly neat in his dress, and altogether prepossessing. Soon afterward I met the Doctor at Prof. Samuel Hatch's, in company with Robt. H. Forrester, at that time assisting Walter Scott in editing the " Protestant Unionist," Pittsburg, Penn. I then thought he was a finer colloquist than preacher. His conversation was B. F. HALL. sufficiently solid, without any effort at display, spiced now and then with a pleasant incident or anecdote. Again I met the Doctor, I think, in the year of our Lord 1853, in Cincinnati, Ohio, at one of our general missionary conventions. Many of the heroic men then and there assembled have finished their course and crossed the flood. Benj. Franklin, Isaac Errett, James Challen, D. S. Burnett, Walter Scott, Dr. L. L. Pinkerton, Geo. Campbell, B. K. Smith, Elijah Good- win, John Rogers, S. W. Irvin, and others I do not now remember. At that time Dr. Hall was esteemed very highly by his brethren, not only for his talents, but his integrity, his moral worth. I was with him much at that meet- ing, and enjoyed his good company greatly. At that convention he expressed to me a desire to spend a few months in Kentucky preaching. We arranged to meet at the residence of my uncle, John Rogers, of Carlisle, Ky., in five or six weeks thereafter. Mean- time I must determine, after consulting with the churches for which I was laboring in Kentucky, whether his services were desired by them or not. We met according to appointment at my uncle's, and agreed to visit the churches of Washington, Beasly Creek, Minerva, and Germantown, Mason county. I had smoked with the Doctor in Cincinnati, and when I saw him at my uncle's I offered him a cigar, asking him if he would not join me in a smoke. Very promptly, but politely, he refused, saying, "I have quit smoking, my brother, and when I quit I quit." Of course I made the best apology I could for my conduct, and remarked, " Well, Doctor, we'll see 79 80 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. as to your quitting," and, reader, we will see further on. He remained several days at Carlisle before begin- ning his tour with me, and preached several good sermons in the old church. But one night he was much disturbed in the beginning and during the deliv- ery of his discourse. A white cat had noiselessly, and no doubt innocently, followed some one into the meeting-house, and just as the Doctor entered the pul- pit he espied the unfortunate truant. Immediately, and with much ado, he ordered that the cat be thrust out from among the good people who had come together to hear him preach, alleging, with more or less emphasis, that he could not possibly preach if he even knew that a cat was in the house, although it might be hid; that he hated cats and dogs immensely. A dear brother snatched poor pussy, and, notwith- standing it may have wanted a corner ever so much, he flung it out at the door violently, and as a pre- sumptuous intruder. When the Doctor took his text and began speaking, he seemed to be unhinged-altogether or largely out of kelter. He appeared to be thinking of the cat, fearing that it might make its appearance while he was engaged in preaching. And, sure enough, he heard the fatal mew. Stopping suddenly, snapping his eyes in a peculiar manner, he remarked with indignation, "Brethren, I was afraid of this when I commenced preaching; here is this abominable cat again; the devil has sent it just to ruin my discourse; I cannot, I will !IOt, preach another word until you have killed that infamous thing, or put it in durance vile." The cat was again waited upon by some one, and was this timei handled so roughly that it returned not again during the evening services. But alas! the Doctor was not able to overcome his embarrassment, or recover himself sufficiently to do himself justice, or speak to the edification of his hearers. It was clear to all that it was an uphill business to speak through- out his entire discourse, and all on account of a cat. He began his Mason county tour with the church at Washington. Here his pulpit-efforts welre most excel- lent. He was in fine health and spirits, and studied his sermons thoroughly just before going to the meet- ing-house. He generally sang a few songs with the brethren before speaking, selecting, out of a hymn- book published by himself, such songs as he said often he knew "were good, because they were to be found in a good hymn-book," one umade by himself. The little children crowded to hear himt, and sat right before him, looking up into his face in breathless silence. The colored people were fond of his preach- ing, and he possessed great power over the poor crea- tures, who sat in the rear of the church, and not only gave good attention, but occasionally were deeply moved. Some of the Doctor's best sermons were of a high order in some respects. One of the finest he delivered at Washington was on the subject of faith, and it was spoken with greater animation than usual. While he was graphically portraying the blessed con- dition of the redeemed in the New Jerusalem, as seen by the eye of faith, an old colored brother of acknowl- edged piety, seated far back, could restrain his feel- ings no longer, but cried aloud at the top of his voice, "Bless de Lord," at the same time clapping his hands 81 B. F. HALL. RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. once only once. This outburst of feeling in no way whatever disconcerted the Doctor, but, on the con- trary, fired him with unwonted energy. He was renewed in vigor and strength, and closed his speech admirably. He afterward said that the old man's shout and clapping, instead of being a drawback, was really a help to him, assisting him in making a deeper impression on his hearers at the conclusion than he could have done otherwise. One evening after returning from services, seated by the fire, I concluded to smoke a cigar. Not dreaming of temptation, I said, "Doctor, I am going to take a smoke; will you have a cigar and smoke with me" " Are your cigars mild or strong" " Mild, quite mild, Doctor," was my reply. " Well, then, hand me one; I'll smoke with you." He smoked then during our tour through Mason county and until the last time I ever saw him. But I now smoke no more-never expect to again, and feel better, much better than when using the weed. Dr. Hall was easily overcome by certain tempta- tions, in small matters, and sometimes in matters not so very small. The Doctor's will-power was not great. Can a man be a really great or good man whose will- power amounts to nothing -Answer, philosopher, casuist, Christian. The people were interested, that's the word, and most profoundly interested, in the Doctor's preaching. But few confessed Christ; but the more thoughtful who heard, if not edified, were greatly interested in the Doctor's efforts. Some of his sermons were much 82 B. F. HALL. talked of-were, so to say, "lauded to the skies." Arrived at Germantown, nothing would do but I must go straight to the Doctor and beg him, if in his power, to speak the first evening on " Heavenly Recognition," or, "Shall we Know Each Other in Heaven" The fame of this discourse had gone ahead of him, and many desired to know what the Scriptures said on this theme. It was usual with the Doctor, in looking into the merits of this question, to present first the teaching of the Old and New Testaments in favor of our know- ing " each other there." Then he felt prepared to affirm, dogmatically. that right reason was favorable to this conception, and notwithstanding his views just at this point were somewhat tinged with transcendent- alism, the showing was pleasing, plausible, if not altogether correct. In closing he never forgot a famous eagle he had seen caged, then uncaged and soaring to the sun-soaring until he was lost. Eagles, swans, pelicans, are good in their place; out of place they are not so good. They are ticklish birds to handle in the pulpit before the great congre- gation. The difficulty is, as I have observed in my short life, that they will not always soar when we want them to do so; that they seem to be exceed- ingly weary and light very low, when they are ex- pected on all hands to have more sense and to do bet- ter. The Doctor's eagle had often soared well after beating the bars of his prison -with his wings, until his master in mercy opened the door of his cage and set him free. But in this discourse his eagle was in bad plight. I had often watched him bound away from the platform in front of his prison and mount on 83 84 RECOLLECTIONS OF XEAN OF FAITH. steady wing until, screaming just once, he was lost above the clouds. But to-night something was ailing the proud bird-I knew not what-until it was after- ward made clear. Going to our room after the services, the Doctor remarked in mournful accents, " You need not tell me that I made a failure. I know it, and I am much morti- fied. Do you know the reason of this failure Did you see that man (naming him) sitting on the- first bench right before me I never could have any con- fidence in him, although he is the leading man in the church. I found as soon as I began to speak that his presence was a torment to me; that I must simply drag along through my entire discourse and end in a Waterloo defeat." And such was the case. The dis- course, as a whole, was flat, empty, powerless. And be it understood, all of this was caused by one innocent vi'tim. Dr. Hall was pastor of the Memphis Church in 1853, but stated to me, while in Cincinnati at the General Convention, that he would, at the close of the year, sever his connection with the church and remove with his family to Texas. He seemed anxious for me to take charge of the congregation, promising to see the brethren in my behalf and secure to me the position. It was also agreed upon between Elder Elijah Good- win, of Indiana, and myself to meet at Louisville, Ky., December, 1853, and proceed thence together to Mem- phis. He in order to conduct a protracted meeting, and I to take charge of the church January, 1854. This was well understood by Dr. Hall, who had engineered the whole matter. B. F. HALL. Bro. Goodwin and I met according to appointment and embarked at Louisville on the "Antelope," which was bound for the city of New Orleans. We were happy to find a number of persons on board who were members of the Christian Church, and like ourselves destined (D. V.) for the sunny land. The consequence was that we preachers were compelled nightly to preach the Word to the passengers who crowded round us and listened with marked attention. We got along pleasantly and safely until we reached Cairo, at the mouth of the Ohio. Here the greedy captain took on board a large amount of freight and it was soon whis- pered among the passengers that we would surely be in danger of striking the rock, or snag, or whatever it might be, a niile below on the Mississippi, and probably go down, as two or three other boats had done only a few days previously. Moving out from Cairo, and turning southward down the river, some wag remarked that the "Antelope" must certainly sink to the bottom; that antelopes were created for the land, not the water. Bro. Good- win, myself and a few others were on the alert. The mate pointed to one boat we were nearing, sunk to the pilot-house; to another near the shore, gone down, and on the shore forty or fifty dead, denuded mules. Bro. Goodwin and I were standing on the forecastle, he with gripsack in hand, I holding on to a large chair. In a moment it seemed that the bow of the " Antelope " rose out of the water two or three feet. Attending this was a very unwelcome noise, as if the very bottom of our noble bark was being literally torn to pieces on rock or snag. The mate rushed below, crying aloud: 85 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. " Help! men; help! Put the ladies on the barge which was lashed, full of wood, to our boat, and cut loose; we must go down." No need of attempting to describe feelings, or to tell what I said or did just then. I distinctly remember that Bro. Goodwin walked, or got down in some way, to the barge, and placed himself on it, as the mate was lustily cutting away at the ropes or chains. I also remember (I shall not soon forget) that I was at his heels in going to the barge, and placed myself beside him on the same. Also I remember that I buttoned my coat hastily and tightly around my body, glanced at a large billet of wood close to me, on which I might soon be compelled to attempt to save my life. We fixed our eyes for a moment on the prow of our "Antelope," and allow me to say, reader, that no tongue can tell the joy and gratitude that filled our hearts, when assured we were safe, not sinking, but riding the waves as we were wont. Finding ourselves out of danger, we went above, went back to the ladies' cabin, proclaimed the good news, already known to them, that the threatened danger was passed. But, alas! being preachers, we were sharply rebuked for our apparent cowardice, as well as for placing ourselves in direct antagonism to what we had preached-" Love one another; " " Help each other;" "Leave not, nor forsake each other." These things we had preached, enforced earnestly; and now what had we been guilty of I Why, thinking only of self, rushing to the barge to save self, and when called upon to put the ladies beyond the reach of harm, did nothing-thought of self, and self alone. I confess, I deny not, my cheek crimsoned with shame. 86 B. F. HALL. "You preachers," continued the ladies, "are as much afraid of dying as we poor sinners-yes, much more so; for you sought the barge, while we remained above, awaiting results." In a moment I confessed my sin to them, begged pardon, and attempted not the least defense. I was not further annoyed. But Bro. Goodwin was not so fortunate. He argued the case, kindly, humorously, confessing that he ought not to have forgotten the ladies. But his defense amounted to less than nothing. I presume this would have ended the confab, had it not been for a remark made by a young, chivalrous, keen-eyed Kentuckian. He was brimful of mischief, and stated with the sober- ness of a judge that he could readily excuse the con- duct of Mr. Rogers, because of his youth; but Mr. Goodwin, being older, could not be excused, either in regard to word or action; especially, his words could not be overlooked. "Why," said he, "as he got on the barge he cried aloud, ' Oh! my God, what will be- come of my baggage"I "I never said it," replied Bro. Goodwin, as the crowd roared with laughter. "I never said it," repeated Bro. Goodwin. "I will take oath before heaven and earth that he did," said this sharp, heartless scamp, as Bro. Goodwin and I rose up and walked out of the company, everybody-preachers, men, women and children-laughing, as perhaps they never laughed before, perhaps never since. Down to Memphis, my Bro. G. and I were greatly annoyed, now and then, by hearing some pestilent fellow cry out, "Oh! my God, where is my baggage " Dr. Hall and the church at Memphis received us in the spirit of Christ, and treated us with much kindness 87 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. during our sojourn among them. Elder Goodwin showed himself to be a workman that needed not to be ashamed; for he not only rightly divided the word of truth, but was a6le to proclaim it with power. The hearing was fine, the attention was most excellent. A number of persons, hearing, believed, and were baptized. The church was strengthened in numbers, in faith, in hope, in love. Few men in this Reforma- tion who have labored harder than Elijah Goodwin in order to restore the primitive faith and practice. He was a man of unbounded faith. This never failed him in life or in death. But he has ceased from labors more abundant. His works remain-follow him in this life, and will go with him to the judgment bar. During the meeting, and in the presence of Bro. Goodwin, I mentioned to Dr. Hall that I had come down to Memphis to take charge of the church, but having learned from the elders that he had himself already made arrangements to do so, I most respect- fully declined, and would return to Kentucky in com- pany with Bro. Goodwin. I also rehearsed in the presence of Bro. Goodwin all that had passed between the Doctor and myself as to my coming to Memphis, becoming pastor of the church, as to work and re- muneration, and especially what the Doctor had prom- ised to do for me, etc., etc., not a sentence of which was denied by the Doctor. Bro. Goodwin remained silent. Dr. Hall, with much feeling, said: "Bro. Rogers, you have told nothing but the truth. And now be it understood that before you shall go back to Kentucky, I will go to the churches in Tennessee and Mississippi on my hands and knees, and find you a 88 B. F. HALL. place to preach, and a better place than Memphis." In the course of the conversation I looked over my diary and read to the Doctor and to Bro. Goodwin the estimate I had placed on the Doctor's pulpit efforts showing my confidence in him as a Christian gentle- man, as an able and faithful expounder of the Word of God. This touched his feelings no little, arid he was readier, if possible, than before to help me. He requested a copy of what I had read from my diary. After consultation with Bro. Goodwin and much de- liberation, I determined not to return to Kentucky at that time, but to remain South and preach either in Tennessee or Mississippi. Before leaving Memphis, by invitation I visited Dr. Hall, at his own home, and talked over various mat- ters which concerned himself especially. John T. Johnson had written the Doctor a pungent letter, which he had received only a few days before Bro. Goodwin and I reached Memphis. In this letter John T. Johnson spoke of a damaging report, circu- lated in certain quarters in Kentucky, against the Doctor's moral character; that this said report was believed to be true by Dr. L. L. Pinkerton and myself, who had diligently and impartially examined sufficient evidence to convict of guilt. One evening, while walking the streets, the Doctor mentioned his having received a letter from Johnson, in which he stated that Dr. L. L. Pinkerton and I had both personally communicated to him the within state- ment, which we could not avoid believing. He inquired if this was correct-if we both regarded the evidence sufficient to sustain the charge made against him. I 7 89 0RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. replied that John T. Johnson's statement was substan- tially correct-that we both believed him to be guilty, and that the most honorable persons in the town of C-, in and out of the church, viewed the whole affair as we did. He simply stamped on the pave- ment, remarking at the same time, "My brethren have lost all confidence in me!" neither admitting nor deny- ing his criminality. One evening, at his own residence, the Doctor gave me his own version of some of the causes which, as he supposed, compelled him to take charge of the Memphis church. While engaged in conversation he sat smoking a long-stemmed clay pipe, which ever and anon went out, and must be fired up again. He vowed that he was in nowise to blame for my disappointment. Others were, whom he dared not name, but he was not. I made no effort to obtain their names. Many matters came up in the course of this prolonged con- versation-matters closely connected with his life, both past and present. He spoke, with a sad heart, of troubles which, he said, he breathed to but few of his friends, and which he begged me to mention to no one. The room in which we sat talking was but poorly lighted, all objects in it being but dimly outlined, al- though it was broad daylight. So, in this enigmatical talk, some things I conceived I understood; other things I am sure I did by no means apprehend. Some things were veiled in mist-appeared in forms dim and shadowy. It has been said that there is a power be- hind the throne, directing the movements of the king. So I could not help whispering to myself, during this memorable interview: " There must be something be- 90 B. F. HALL. hind and beyond all these utterances, moving and di- recting my friend and brother. What is it, pictured by the imagination, that I see standing in the gloom I What hidden power ever beckoning on to ruin Is it a demon-an evil angel Who can tell " In company with his friends he was usually full of life, occasionally laughter-loving. Being well in- formed on all subjects, literary and religious, his con- versation was always interesting-now and then highly entertaining. He was very fond of humor, and could relate an anecdote of personal experience, or an inci- dent that was intimately or remotely connected with his life-work as minister of the gospel, with much power. But here, at home, he seemed under a cloud- not a ray of sunshine to be seen or enjoyed; not a smile, not a joyous word, not a pleasant glance of the eye-ever sitting and talking as if some one in the adjoining room were dying, or we had just returned from putting away in his last resting-place some dear friend or relative. God alone knows the path trod by each one of his frail professed followers, the many temptations and sore trials of each, the heart-burnings and burdens of each, and how difficult to hush into silence the stormy passions raging within. He who formed this body so wondrously, and gave the spirit to dwell in this house of clay, can alone count the many tears of anguish and of real penitence that fall in the silent hours of secret prayer to the Father of all mercies, the God of all consolation. Shall we throw the mantle of charity over deeds which we cannot wholly approve, yet which we do not fully under- stand Or shall we pronounce judgment against one 91 92 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. whose life has been mainly given to the proclamation of the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, although that life has been full of fearful blunders and mistakes, grievous but dimly outlined sins and misdemeanors, which we conceive to be well-nigh unpardonable Shall we pronounce judgment against such a brother, or await the sentence of the Great Day, whatever that may be Without winking at one known or acknowl- edged sin of the Doctor's, I prefer awaiting the decis- ion of Mary's Son and Israel's King in that day when all shall stand before the great white throne, and shall be judged out of the books then opened, and according to the things done in the body. Many years after this eventful meeting in Memphis, the Doctor, when nearing the grave, wrote me a sad letter, saying he could not think of leaving this world without asking me to forgive him, with regard to his unjustifiable course toward me. He confessed he had committed a sin in not allowing me to preach for the Memphis church, and piteously desired my forgive- ness. Of course I forgave him, as I trust to be for- given of sins committed by myself. Dr. Hall was ambitious, as the following will show: At a period in life when most efficient and powerful in proclaiming the gospel, he made a tour with A. Campbell from Bethany to Richmond, Va., passing through Pittsburg. It was agreed upon that they should preach alternately day and night on the way, thus mutually bearing the burdens of the trip. The first night Mr. Campbell preached in the city of Pittsburg, and the discourse was regarded by the Doc- tor as not at all remarkable, either in matter or in B. F. HALL. manner-simply what might be considered respect- able-only this and nothing more." Next evening the Doctor preached. His sermon he conceived to be superior to the one Mr. Campbell had delivered the previous night. Thus they continued preaching alter- nately until reaching Richmond, the Doctor laying the flattering unction to his soul, that if Mr. Campbell had exhibited his utmost powers in his pulpit -efforts on the way, he could, without doubt, by close study and diligent preparation, distance him in oratorical powers. This was his deliberate conclusion. But grave conclusions are sometimes reversed. At eleven o'clock a large audience, composed of the most intelli- gent persons in Richmond, assembled in the old meet- ing house to hear Mr.-Campbell. When he began to speak, the Doctor imagined he possessed new life and additional vigor, handling his subject with unwonted clearness and power. His utterances were remarkably distinct, his illus- trations apt and forcible, while the great argument he was endeavoring to unfold in all of its beauty and pro- portions, simply grand and overwhelming. Higher and yet higher, with little effort, but with intense feeling, he mounted upward, towering far above any- thing the Doctor had ever heard from him, and it may possibly be, from anyone else before in all his life. He noticed. toward the close of the sermon, that some were leaning forward in breathless silence, others were so overcome by the sweeping eloquence of the speaker that they were not conscious of what they were doing. The Doctor was so wrought upon that he scarcely realized where he was. Drawing a long breath, he 93 BXCOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. said to himself, "Well, one thing is certain: I shall never be able to preach again in the presence of such a master of assemblies! I may possibly attempt to do so, but I cannot succeed." And to the day of his death he never forgot that Lord's day morning in Richmond, Va., and never could preach thereafter in the presence of the great reformer, at least with any degree of satisfaction to himself. There was one sad defect in the Doctor's preaching, or in the manner of delivering his discourses, namely, in attracting far more attention to the beautiful or ornamental in them than to the subject-matter. Many years ago, in his palmy days, he delivered a series of discourses in Nashville, Tenn. It is said that they were very excellent, some of them considered by good judges as being quite eloquent. Talbot Fan- ning, president of Franklin College, was present part of the time during the meeting. His last discourse was delivered with much more than his usual fervor and animation, and was listened to with the most pro- found attention. The audience seemed spell-bound. He called for a song at the conclusion and invited per- sons forward to confess Christ. But to his great dis- appointment and chagrin, not a soul accepted the invitation. This was so disheartening that, turning to Bro. Fanning, he remarked in a loud, clear tone of voice; "My brother, I am through with my efforts to save this people. I have done my best, I can do no more; offer an exhortation and tell us what is in the way-tell us why no one in this vast and attentive audience has had the moral courage to come to the Lord Jesus Christ." President Fanning was never at 94 B. F. HALL. a loss for something to say. He was full of facts, if lacking in fancy. Besides, he generally spoke his mind freely, never at any time, or under any circum- stances, mincing, but aiming directly at the point before him. He arose with great calmness and gave the key that unlocked the secret of the Doctor's disappointment. " The people," he remarked, " were so impressed with the fine sentences, the drapery, the splendor in this sermon, and perhaps in all that they have heard, that, enjoying an intellectual feast, they have had neither time nor inclination to think of the salvation of their souls." It was no small misfortune that the Doctor should attract greater attention to the outer than the inner, the finish, the trappings of the sermon, rather than to the thought, the weightier matter, that alone which could accomplish permanent or beneficial re- sults. The multitudes that came nightly to hear the gospel had been merely entertained, profoundly, no doubt, but had not been cut to the heart, or convicted by the truth, as should have been the case. He spoke not this in anger, or in the line of censorious criticism, but as a fact-as a solution of the problem before him. The Doctor accepted the solution gracefully, as well as the compliment, yet at the same time feeling re- buked and mortified at being so unfortunate as to direct the attention of the people to himself, rather than to the obedience of the faith and the saving of their souls. Are there many preachers in our ranks to-day who think more of interesting, entertaining or pleasing the 95 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. people than all things else Are there those among us whose sole purpose is to so shape their discourses and deliver them that they may be numbered among the distinguished, the renowned and eloquent pulpit orators of the past and present On this point Daniel Webster speaks words of wis- dom. He says: "I want my pastor to come to me in the spirit of the gospel, saying, ' You are mortal; your probation is brief; your work must be done speedily. You are immortal, too. -You are hastening to the bar of God! The Judge standeth before the door.' When I am thus admonished, I have no disposition to muse or to sleep. These topics," said Mr. Webster, " have often occurred to my thoughts; and if I had time I would write upon them myself." The burning words of Fanny Fern, on hearing a dis- course delivered in a music-hall, by Theodore Parker, to the elite of Boston, are apropos. She thus speaks: "I see the polished blade of satire glittering in the air, followed by curious, eager, youthful eyes, which gladly see the 'Sword of the Spirits parried. Mean- ing glances, smothered smiles and approving nods fol- low the witty, clerical sally. The orator pauses to mark the effect, and his face says, 'That stroke tells,' and so it did, for the Athenians are not all dead who 'love to see and to hear some new thing.' But he has another arrow in his quiver. How his features soften; his voice is low and thrilling, his imagery beautiful and touching. He speaks of human love; he touches skillfully a chord to which every heart vibrates and stern manhood is struggling with his tears, ere his smiles are chased away. Oh! there's intellect there, SB B. F. HALL. there's poetry there, there's genius there! But I re- member Gethsemane-I forget not Calvary! I know the 'rocks were rent,' and the 'heavens darkened,' and the 'stone rolled away,' and a cool chill strikes to my heart when I hear Jesus of Nazareth lightly mentioned. Oh, what are intellect, and poetry, and genius when with Jewish voice they cry, 'Away with him!!' With Mary, let me 'bathe his feet with my tears, and wipe them with the hairs of my head.' And so I went away sorrowful that this human preacher, with great intellectual possessions, should yet lack 'the one thing needful." Forty years ago, while efficient evangelists were in great demand among the disciples of Christ, it is a well known fact that they were often compelled to perform much hard work and to receive but small pay in dollars and cents. Possibly they might have fared a little better, and been better remembered, had they selected more carefully their fields of labor. But this they cared not to do. The whole world they looked upon as their field, and consequently they went every- where preaching the Word. Dr. Hall for a time endured hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. But he realized that he was a preacher of far more than ordinary ability, and that the material aid he was receiving was insufficient 'to supply his demands, which were numerous and- press- ing, some of them no doubt essential, others with as little doubt, non-essential. The Doctor was especially fond of a beautiful table, and if it groaned under the weight of substantial food, of richest viands, or costly 97 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. delicacies, no objection whatever need be offered to saint nor sinner. As might be supposed, he was in no wise averse to extra good clothing, to possessing and using a fine horse or a fine buggy, with appropriate trappings. And who will depose to the contrary He felt that he needed much more money than he could rightfully call his own; and, alas, how many poor, self-denying preachers have had this same feeling in life's fearful battle. But how could this "one thing needful" be law- fully and honorably secured Not by preaching the gospel to the poor. He saw no possible way opened by which to improve his financial condition by merely preaching the gospel from place to place, or by confin- ing himself to pastoral work. He could not entertain the thought for a moment of abandoning the ministry. He must preach all the days allotted him on earth; but could he not also engage in some other business that would assist him in living as he desired to live How many pure-hearted ministers of the gospel have not been thus tempted, (shall I say by the Evil One) to supplement their calling, and by this means become more efficient in advancing the cause of the Master by supplying a felt want Did not Paul, the great apostle to the Gentiles Paul who labored more abundantly, and who endured greater hardships than all the apostles-did not he turn aside for a short time to tent-making And could he not become something else besides a preach- er Could he not become a dentist, and thus assist largely in supplying his numerous and pinching wants Good example-no flawin this argument; no 98 B. F. HALL. breach in this logic; every way sound and most excel- lent. So he forthwith became a full-fledged dentist and, because of his prominence as a preacher, put many a dollar in his pocket by pulling and plugging the teeth of the suffering ones of earth, and all without much labor or any very great amount of annoyance. But, alas! his mind was now, in some degree at least, turned away from that which had ever been the leading purpose of his life-much more, too, than he at first imagined. His attention was now no longerfixed supremely on one calling alone, but on two-the one divine, the other wholly of the earth, earthy. But Dr. Hall at best was one of the most peculiar men of his day. At times, great; at others, small and very small. Now strong as Samson, again weak as he when shorn of his locks. At times, while listening to him discoursing upon the theme of redemption, you felt near the gate of heaven; anon, while associating with him in every-day life, you almost felt that you had struck the direct route to Pandemonium. Just think of it! He would occasionmlly quit preaching and mount his pony, with rifle lashed over his shoul- der, knife in belt, arrayed in garb that likened him to Arab, Tartar, or North American Indian, would wan- der for months with chosen comrades over the vast plains of Texas, hunting the deer or the buffalo. No doubt he enjoyed these excursions immensely, for he could entertain you royally in recounting his thrilling adventures and "hair-breadth escapes." He was a man of moods and tenses, of singular likes and dislikes, of strange freaks, of amazing con- tradictions. Not a few preachers of unquestioned piety 99 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. and ability, men who might have become prominent as evangelists, or pastors of churches, who have sig- nally failed from lack of moral courage to face diffi- culties, or endure patiently the many hardships by the way. Who is able, especially in the ministry, to serve God and Mammon Who is able to follow Christ in all good conscience and with fidelity without denying himself and taking up his cross daily Ah! blighting as the mildew, fatal as the deadly night-shade, is this lust of the flesh, lust of the eye and pride of life. This demon that now and then haunts the soul of the good man, can only be ex- pelled by prayer and fasting. The world runs wild after the so-called heroes, who have bravely fought on the bloody fields of battle. But they fall far short of being real heroes when compared with those who are engaged day by day in fighting battles unseen to mor- tal vision, against enemies within and without, sub- mitting meekly, without a murmur, to poverty, trials innumerable, heart-burnings, known to God alone, and all this right in view of the glitter and pomp of the world. B. F. HALL AND JOHN T. JOHNSON COMPARED. Dr. Hall was not a scholar; he had only a common English education. Still, he spoke correctly, and usu- ally his sermons contained words well chosen; now and then there might be discovered in them a small amount of gash or flatness. He might be termed a book-worm. He bought and read all sorts of books. His library would never be considered that of a minis- 100 B. F. HALL. ter of the gospel. In it you could find works which assisted him in understanding the sacred Scriptures, as well as those aiding in presenting the truth to the people from the sacred desk. Works on science, .philosophy, history, poetry-from Shakspeare down to Hudibras, or the commonest rhymester or punster of the land. Here, side by side, might be seen books on the evidences of Christianity and those favoring Rationalism and Infidelity. In conversation with him, on a certain occasion, as to the merits of a work writ- ten by Theodore Parker, I well remember his words of caution-how fearful he was that the minds of the youth of our country might be perverted or turned in the wrong channel by the reckless, yet insinuating views of this master-mind. What he conceived to be a good novel he simply devoured; a bad one he never opened. All day long he-could sit and read aloud to an appreciative group of friends, and laugh, or weep, or frown at the Incidents coming to light as the story advanced. A well-written historical novel was a real feast to him-charmed him as the syren song was wont to win and woo the fated mariners of long ago. And many a beautiful sentence or apt poetic effusion was jotted down in his diary for future appropriation. John T. Johnson was not better educated than Dr. Hall. He never read or studied but one book-the Bible and but one theme in that blessed book-the plan of redemption as unfolded in the New Testament. Possibly he may have read other books, for pastime, but he seldom engaged in conversation long at a time on any subject save that of Christianity. In the in- vestigation of any question of a religious character, 101 0 REOLLEOTIONS OF MEN OF FAIT. he aimed to reach, if possible, the precise meaning of the words of the Holy Spirit. He kept constantly in view the writer-his surroundings, his purpose-as well as the time of his writing. He never approached the Scriptures with a proposition that must be proved to be true. This he scorned to do. On the contrary, he sat at the feet of Christ and the apostles, to learn that wisdom which comes from on high, at no time wishing to bolster up any particular view. Cautious- ly, yet eagerly, he sought to know the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, influenced in a very small degree by the conceptions of men, however pious or learned. He was so profoundly engaged in the work of his Master that he had no time to devote to the study of philosophy or literature. And was be not in first-class company Paul and his co-workers threw away not one moment of time in delving into the wonders or mysteries of the material universe, or in descanting learnedly on abstruse metaphysical questions. The redemption of man from sin and all its ruinous con- sequences, his preparation for living here and here- after, was to him the all-absorbing theme. If there ever lived and labored in the ministerial ranks of the Current Reformation a man of one and only one purpose, that man was John T. Johnson. To preach the unsearchable riches of Christ, to build up the fortunes of fallen humanity, was certainly his mission and his chief glory in this world. Dr. Hall, when he gave himself wholly to preaching the Word, prepared himself as thoroughly as possible for the pulpit, putting into his discourses such facts, 102 B. F. HALL. truths or incidents as at once recommended them to the thoughtful, never failing, when within his power, to cull the fairest flowers from the fields of poesy, with which to adorn and beautify them, that they might be well received by all classes. His voice was usually pleasant, now and then rich and full of melody. When he began speaking his ut- terance was slow and distinct; as he advanced he warmed up and spoke more rapidly, but not less dis- tinctly. His manner ordinarily was easy and grace- ful, although he walked from one side to the other in the pulpit, and gesticulated much, especially with his right arm. He always looked his audience full in the face; was ever master of himself, as well as the assem- bly. At times his words were uttered with such tender- ness and pathos that the hardest hearts were touched and softened. Again all was changed, and one could scarcely realize that this was the same person who had, but a few moments previously, been so meek and condescending. Fully aroused, his manner was ab- rupt, his bearing kingly, his voice rising and increas- ing in power until the whole audience is thrilled with the burning words of the speaker. Leaving the church, and on their way home, the people are so deeply im- pressed with the overpowering grandeur of the speech that they only whisper in subdued accents to each other: " What a wonderful sermon! Never heard anything like it before in all my life. Great man." To make a fine, logical speech never entered the mind of John T. Johnson-found no place in his heart. One question paramount to all others must be answered 103 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. immediately by those who sat before him, namely, "What must I do to be saved " Not what may I do, or how little may be done, but what must be done, and done now, in order to be saved. And after pressing this question for a moment, he would stop, look round at each one in the audience, and then, stamping his foot, cry: "Beware! take care! Act now, or oppor- tunity may fail you forever!" The people must under- stand God's glorious plan of salvation, and with it there must be no trifling. It must be believed, obeyed, enjoyed, in order to live in this world and in the world to come. He was never smooth, or gentle, or tender. He was stern at times-inflexible, incisive, most em- phatic. He never once thought of pleasing any mor- tal, in or out of the pulpit. He reasoned only by quoting Scripture facts, truths or promises, Which must be received because given of God, and hence worthy of- all acceptation. In the name of Christ Jesus, King of kings, he stood before the people burdened with sin, and demanded their immediate surrender. No time to debate, or parley, or offer excuse. All must bow to Him who was dead and is alive; to Him who now offers to save, but will judge the living and the dead in the last day. His great theme had 80 pos- sessed him that his whole being-body, soul and spir- it-was permeated and thrilled by it. And this his hearers realized, and hence the unconverted were cut to the heart, trembled as if in the presence of the Judge of all the earth, and at once surrendered. Not a Boul went away from the meeting discussing the beauties or splendors of the speech-no, no. They never spoke of the great man, or the great effort, or 104 B. F. HALL. the unrivaled eloquence-never. On the contrary: " I am surely a great sinner; am lost; am undone; must perish forever without Christ. I must and will go to him for help. Never in all my life have I had such feelings. I can never rest, day or night, until I become a Christian, cost what it may." And now these men have ended their labors, and passed beyond the dark river. Should it be my un- speakably happy lot to enjoy heaven, with all that heaven means, I am sure I shall find John T. Johnson among the ransomed of the Lord. Some one has said that those who enter heaven will wonder at not seeing some present whom they confidently expected; also at seeing others whom they did not suppose could be saved; lastly, at being there themselves. Very well; be it so. Still, if by the grace of God I am permitted to enter through the gates into the Eternal City, of one thing I feel assured-that I shall certainly see my dear friend and brother, John T. Johnson, numbered with the redeemed and happy forever. And may I be permitted to say that should my eye fall upon the Doctor, mingling among the ransomed ones, or standing among those "first in song and nearest the throne," wearing a crown or discoursing music from a golden harp, I could not find it in my heart to say: " Snatch the jeweled diadem from his brow! Take from his hands the harp of gold, nor ever allow his lips to be opened again in songs of praise to God!" No, no; but on the contrary I would bow submissively to the will of Him who doeth all things well. 8 105 CHAPTER V. THE GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA AS DISCIPLES OF CHRIST, OR CHRISTIANS. BY J. B. JONES. It is a laudable study to seek the cause, aim, meth- ods and fruits of the institutions which shape the age in which we live. No movement has so impressed itself upon this century as that represented by the people known at times as the Disciples of Christ, but most generally called Christians. It has conquered a home in the hearts of more than seven hundred thou- sand adherents. In the midst of hostile forces it has fought its way to an honorable peace. The genius and spirit of such a plea must have within it elements of power. There must be some reason which enables it to take such a deep hold upon the souls of men. Pleas of all kinds have their root in reason. There is always an appeal to the laws of thought within and to the accepted standard without. We enter this in- vestigation, therefore, with the shield of reason for our defense and with the sword of the Spirit, the Word of God, as our weapon of war. We assume the funda- mental data of reason, and concede to all the right of private interpretation, guided by the generally accept- ed canons of interpretation. The laws of interpreta- tion are one. Truth is a unit. The hidden mines of wisdom in God's works and word yield up their treas- THE GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA. ures to those who seek according to the laws of the mind and the laws of nature. The fruits of honest in- vestigation are harmonious and homogeneous. In determining the genius of our plea and unfolding its spirit, it is understood that the positions taken represent "our plea" as it appears to the writer. He speaks for himself, not for others; and yet he does not seek to depart from the commonly accepted platform of the Disciples. The genius and spirit of our plea should appear in its origin, aim, method and fruits. "Our plea" implies that there are other pleas not ours. In the use of this term, let us not seem narrow. Seekers after truth are swift to hear and slow to speak. The fact of a separate existence argues the right to a separate plea. We use the term "our" to distinguish what belongs to us as a religious people from that which is held by other religionists. There is no pre- sumption or unrighteous selfishness in the use of this ord. There is a reason for the hope within us. That reason developed constitutes our plea. There is a rea- son for the separate existence of every religious body in the world. That reason constitutes its right to ex- ist. Every church is supposed to have its plea. So that, if the use of the expression, "Our plea," creates a prejudice against us as a people, it must also lie against all other religious bodies claiming recognition from God and man. Concede the right of denoinina- tional existence, and back of each denomination lies a reason, just and sufficient, full and truthful. This is the plea that must stand the hammer of God's word and defy the destructive forces of earth and hell. All 107 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. this is clear to the man that thinks, let him stand where he may. Truthful pleas are a unit. The right of separate existence as religious bodies, resting on separate and distinct pleas, must not be taken as a warrant to hold pleas which contradict and destroy each Qther. Where two pleas hold marks that are at variance, they are not both right. One or the other must be wrong. Possibly both are wrong. Truth is a unit, and there can be no clashing between its severed parts, or its separated advocates. These are axiomatic principles that must attend every step we take. The soul may at first recoil from a full acceptance of these views, but that they are true is clear when we ask the question, " Can any two men be found in the United States, taken at random from two different re- ligious bodies, who will each accord to the other per- fect equality" Let them be brought forth. They are not to be found. The fact of separate existence as found in two religious bodies carries with it contradic- tion. If each holds the truth adequate to save the soul (and truth that saves is the same), there is no rea- son for their entering two different folds. "There is one fold." In so far as each differs from the other, there is error or unessential truth, on one side or the other. If unessential, the reason for separate existence goes down. If essential truth on both sides, truth is at war with truth. But it is a unit. There is only one point where perfect equality is conceded by men belonging to separate religious bodies. In the sphere of intention, all men who are honest will concede to others what they ask for themselves-sincerity. Where 108 THE GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA. a difference of religious position is construed into dis- honesty, there is sure to be persecution. It is, there- fore, right to urge that it is no part of our plea to hold that we are honest and all others are dishonest; that God has made us the special custodians of sincerity. Nor is it claimed that we hold all the truth in the world. We may be in a position to receive all the truth possible to mortals with finite capacity, but that we have pre-empted the- entire territory of Spiritual truth, no respectable Disciple has ever claimed. But can it be held that the peculiar marks in us, or in others, by which we are known as Disciples, or Christians, do in our judgment constitute a part of the truth If these marks, whatever they may be, do form no part of the truth, then let them be cut down as a tree which is fruitless. But the presumption is that there are distinguishing marks upon every relig- ions body in the world. Each is separated from all the rest by some quality that the others do not pos- sess. Now, granting that such quality is truth in whole or in part, if one religious body is considered presumptuous and bigoted in that it holds to these pe- culiarities, all others are under the same condemnation. Condemn one for its self-righteousness because it clings to its peculiarities, and you must condemn all the others, unless there is a reason for the peculiarities of the one that is not found in any of the others. Suppose it were possible to find one religious body which held to all the cardinal doctrines indorsed by all the others, and that it differed from all the others because each had put upon itself a mark to distin- guish it from all the rest, and that by the suppression 109 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. of these characteristics there could be a union upon the cardinal doctrines held bv each and all-what would be thought of this body i Could the charge of self-righteousness be alleged against this body, pecu- liar not because of some characteristic it held as dis- tinguishing it from all others, but peculiar and sepa- rated from all the others because it had laid hold of as cardinal and common-ground doctrines held by all Let us not be considered presumptuous; but such is the position of the Disciples. We advocate no truth not held by the various religious bodies in the Prot- estant world, and not found in their creeds. With the way cleared, we are now ready to examine the following assertion made by Alexander Campbell, in his debate with Dr. N. L. Rice, page 678: "Our reformation began in the conviction of the in- adequacy of the corrupted forms of religion in popular use to effect that thorough change of heart and life which the gospel contemplates as so essential to ad- mission into heaven." Here Bro. Campbell discovers the origin of the ref- ormation. We do not hold that this conviction of the inadequacy of existing religions to meet a demand of the soul marks the difference between us and other re- formers or religionists. Every reformation has a com- mon origin. It roots itself in a deep dissatisfaction with what it has and what it sees to be faulty, and in the determination by the help of God to secure what is better, or what God has proposed and provided to meet a righteous demand of an individual or commu- nity. Mr. Campbell felt that the divided state of the religious world, where sect fought sect, and the follow- 110 THE GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA. ers of Christ were hateful and hated one another, could never adequately preach the gospel and convert the world to him who said: "Neither for these only do I pray; but for them also that believe on me through their word; that they may all be one; even as thou, Father, art in me and I in thee, that they may also be one in us: that the world may believe that thou didst send me." While he admitted that there were good men in all religious bodies, and Christians wherever men had God's nature, he was convinced that a divided Christendom could not change. the heart of the world. The same problem confronted him that confronts the missionaries in Japan to-day. Luther's reformation, so fruitful of good results, began in the conviction that the condition of Rome was corrupt, and after first trying to purify the church by remaining within its fold, he was at last driven forth to work out the problem of justification by faith along his own lines of thought. Wesley sought to infuse new life and love into the benumbed limbs of a cold and formal age. Each rose out of an inadequate present to a more adequate and better equipped future. While all these reformers started from a common conviction as to existing evils, they were guided by a different aim. Whatever conflicted with the doctrine of justification by faith, Luther threw overboard; hence, great as he was, he styled the letter of James "the epistle of straw." All honor to these brave men to whom the world owes so much; bus it never occurred to either of them to pass back of all councils, and creeds, and corruptions, back of all tradition and every ecclesias- tical environment and entanglement, and attempt to ill 112 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. reconstruct the church from the sacred and inspired record of the New Testament. This was the distinct aim of Mr. Campbell. He worked from Jerusalem and the first church as a centre, rather than from the doc- trine of justification by faith, or from the demand for zeal and purity. Against each of these reformers may be alleged the common crime of dissatisfaction with the existing evil and the courage to eradicate it. Each aimed to turn men to God through Christ. Each aimed to reform the church-Luther and Wesley by reform- ing the institutions already existing; Campbell by taking the pattern shown to him on Mount Zion and reconstructing the church of his day after that perfect model, with the accretions of ages removed, with all human impediments discarded. He sought a complete return to the doctrines, ordinances, faith and life, spirit and worship of the church as it existed under apostolic direction. Either in express command, ex- ample or necessary inference he held that we must find all that we believe, obey and live. Omitting the miraculous, local and temporary, the church of to-day must be a counterpart of the church in Paul's day. At the risk of being called presumptuous, we have taken this ground. If the effort of Luther and Wes- ley to reform a corrupt church is commendable, why is not this aim to restore the church as it was in the beginning commendable If the genius and spirit of their plea to extricate religion from the toils of error can find a response in our souls, what closes the door of our hearts to this reformer of the nineteenth cen- tury If we praise one, let us praise all; if we blame one, let us blame all. Surely the aim of our reformer THE GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA. to work from the pure church and all its doctrines as a divine model into the future does not condemn him; while the effort to work from existing evils back into the past, along the line of justification by faith, ap- proves the other reformers. But we pass to urge that these reformers were all alike Protestants in theory. Each of them stood face to face with- corruptions traceable to Rome. The Word of God was accepted by them all as authoritative. But it remained for this restoration movement to give to the Protestant princi- ple its full force. The most fundamental and cardinal of all its principles is found in this formula: " Where the Bible speaks, we speak; where the Bible is silent, we are silent." From the day when this formula was enunciated in 1809 till the present hour, the fetters of human opin- ion have been breaking away, and the power to perse- cute for opinion's sake has been on the wane. On the other hand, there has been a corresponding increase in the power of the word to build up the soul. Protest- antism, left untranimeled, has led to the One Book as the only source of spiritual truth, only rule of life, and only test of fellowship. The conscience is being divorced from human opinions, and being wedded to inspired truth. Daily the conviction is growing, at home and abroad, before the throng of believers in this enlightened land and before the united heathen world, that no human creed is broad enough for com- mon ground. We thus hold to the One Book as ade- quate under the control of God's Spirit to create, direct and perfect all church-life and faith. While all Prot- estants accede to these principles, in so far as Bible 113 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. supremacy is urged, and all admit that the last appeal is to the Word of God, there are consequences drawn from this position and inseparable from its application which often provoke hostility, and have at times made us odious in the eyes of our brethren. We disclaim all desire to wound the hearts of the good and true people who are fighting to make Christ the King of the souls of men. Nor are we responsible for the er- ratic notions which here and there have been advocat- ed by wandering stars that have appeared for a time among us, foaming out their own shame, and dften leading good people to misjudgment and false ideas concerning our peculiarities. But along the line of adherence to truth are found the methods and fruits of our plea. Here, too, we may see its spirit and its genius. Let us see some of the cardinal doctrines as discovered by the application of this principle: "Where the Bible speaks,. we speak; where the Bible is silent, we are silent." Like all other truths, this has its destructive and constructive sides. Tt builds up and preserves the good; it tears down and destroys the evil. It is in- clusive and exclusive. Put your hand in the hand of truth and follow where it leads. Take the name Christian. There is but one name under heaven whereby we must be saved. Christ saves. It was then right for the disciples to be called Christians; for the apostle to persuade men to become Christians; for God's children to suffer as Christians. If we are breth- ren, Christ is our elder brother; if saints, he is our sanctifier; if elect ones, God has chosen us through him; if citizens, he is our King; if priests, he is our 14 THE GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA. Great High Priest; if there be any name to which we are entitled, it is because of some relation existing between him and us, and because such relation was established in the fact that he was crucified for us and we were baptized into his name. "Is Christ crucified for you, or were you baptized into the name of Paul " Suppose Paul had been crucified for them; suppose they had been baptized into his name. Then this would have conferred the right to be called Paulites. So that the application of this principle to the name to be used confirms the right to wear Christ's name, or any name implied or revealed in our relation to him as teacher, and at the same time it destroys the right to wear a human name, because in so doing we dis- honor Christ by honoring men. Names imply thoughts. Words are vehicles of thought, and when the thought perishes the word dies too. Let the thought perish, and the divisions which they perpetuate will disap- pear. Union comes by speaking the same things and being perfectly joined together in the same mind and same judgment. We cannot unite on Paul's name. But on Christ's name all can agree. This is common ground. - There is one article of belief on which all can stand. On the "one faith" that "Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ, the Son of the living God," every soul in the various Protestant churches can be stayed. On this rock the church is built. Other foundation can no man lay than that which is laid. " There is one Lord." " Let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God hath made that same Jesus whom you have crucified both Lord and Christ." "Him hath God exalted to 115 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. his right hand to be a Prince and Savior to grant re- pentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins." We can all accept these texts proclaiming the fact that God has declared Jesus of Nazareth to be his son by his resurrection from the dead. The Bible supreme makes Jesus both David's Lord and David's Son. He is our Immanuel, " God' with us," " God manifest in flesh." There is one Spirit. The Holy Spirit in its creative and redemptive power takes its proper place in the Bible. God's book reveals it brooding over the cha- otis world-present in the conception of Jesus, de- scending upon him at his baptism, working through him in all miracles, a quickening power in the resur- rection, convicting the sinner, comforting the saint, sealing, strengthening, interceding for him, and, in a word, co-operating with God in creation, providence and redemption, and united with the Father and Son, even in what some term a mere ordinance administered in the name of all beings who enter into the Godhood. The Bible builds up this view of the Spirit. But the silence of the Word of God as to direct action upon the soul of the sinner, leaves us no room for faith. Here opinion comes in. On what God has revealed, we can agree. On what is not revealed, but conject- urable. there can be no union. Our failure to accept the theory of direct spiritual influence has incurred the displeasure of those who advocate such theory; and it has been thought, and even taught, that there is a complete denial of the Spirit. We urge that the fruits of the Spirit, not a human theory, however hoary with age, or however strenuously advocated by -118 THE GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA. theologians, should be made the test of fellowship and the bond of brotherhood. In passing, we beg to exalt the fact that from, the beginning opinions have been held in subjection, by our people, to faith. A clear distinction has been kept up between what God sub- mits as facts to be believed, commands to be obeyed, promises to be enjoyed, and the mere opinions, specu- lations and conjectures of men uninspired and fallible. It is too true that while many have been seeking to establish the righteousness of their theories of spirit- ual influence, God's clearly revealed truth as found in Acts of -Apostles from the inspired pen of the beloved physician, has been neglected or ignored. The inclusive and exclusive force of this One Book principle manifests itself as to the ordinances. It sustains what all accept; rejects all that is beclouded with doubt, or what is set aside by the logical force of the common position accepted. From the creeds of the various churches, from the histories of the dif- ferent ages, from the scholarship of the present and of the past, and from the Word of God, there comes to us a single voice: "There is one baptism. Baptism is one in subject, action and design." The man whose heart is changed by faith on Jesus as the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world, who has been taught to hate sin and love righteousness, when he is buried with Christ in immer- sion and raised to walk in newness of life, is baptized. The immersion of the penitent believer in water is ac- cepted as Christian baptism by all except Quakers. It can be shown from the creeds and commentaries that the position that baptism is connected with the 117 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. remission of sins is not a new idea. It runs back through the ages, finding its advocates in all religious bodies. Baptism is a command to be obeyed. It ex- ists for a purpose. It has its position by divine ap- pointment. Man has no right to displace it or change its form or its design. If it has been clothed with talismanic power; if it has been invested with creative energy even where there is no faith to purify the heart and no repentance to change the will, it is because the mind of the Protestant world has failed to carry out the constructive and destructive principle of "where the Bible speaks, we speak; where the Bible is silent, we are silent." The expressions, "for the remission of sins," "sa.ved by baptism," "washing of regenera- tion," and other tests referring to the value of baptism, do not supplant the office of faith and repentance as human elements; nor do these expressions set aside Christ as Savior. But these terms do exclude, as the reformers saw by-and-by, infant baptism, since there can be only one class of subjects for baptism, and one action expressing the faith of the subject in Christ, who was delivered to death "for our offenses and raised for our justification." In restoring baptism to its proper place as to its action, subject and design, it must be kept in mind that, as God does not require faith where faith cannot be had, repentance where re- pentance cannot be had, so, where baptism cannot be had, it is not required. The remission of sins comes through the grace of God in Christ according to faith, where faith is possible. But there is common ground in the immersion of the penitent believer in the name 118 THE GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA. of the Lord Jesus Christ for the remission of his sins. There is one baptism. The Lord's Supper also falls under the same general principle. It is admitted by all Protestant bodies that communion of the body of Christ in the one loaf, and communion of the blood of Christ in the one cup is proper at some time. We must choose as to the frequency of the observance. The facts in Scripture relating to the conduct of Paul at Troas, the church at Corinth and to the nature of the institution, and ecclesiastical history-all urge its weekly observance. But we are met at every step in the extension of this truly Protestant principle by opposition from good men and men whose piety and devotion to truth and right are unquestionable. Nowhere does the de- structive force of this plea strike harder than in the application of the words, "There is one body." Com- mitted to the word of God, we must go where it leads. It will be admitted that there is no one church to-day so supremely presumptuous as to suppose that all the saved, all the children of God, are within its pale, unless that be the Catholic church, and all its preach- ers will not advocate such position. Bro. Campbell took the position that God had a people in all religious bodies. If in every nation he that feareth God and worketh righteousness is accepted of him, then in every church he that feareth God and worketh right- eousness is accepted of God, and his prayers and alms go up as a memorial before the great white throne. This concession does not commit us to stag- nation and self-satisfaction with present attainments. But it must be made, for reason and truth alike de- 119 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. mand that it should be made. Let no one think that union with any denomination, as such, ever did or ever can save. It is union with God through Christ that saves. We must become partakers of Christ's nature before we can be part of his body. "We are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus." Here is common ground. We do not hold that the act of faith, as a self-chosen and praiseworthy act of the soul, transforms the nature; for as a simple act of the soul faith has no more power to change our natures than the cup has to quench our thirst, or the knife and fork have to appease our hunger. Faith in Jesus as the Christ, the Son of the living God, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God that he might purge our consciences from dead works to serve the living God-this faith in Christ as a per- son-transforms the soul from glory to glory as by the Spirit of the living God. Christ dwells in the heart of faith. Wherever it is possible for a man to get hold of Christ thus, he is- saved. It has been the conviction of our people from the beginning that de- nominationalism, however many pious people there are who advocate its claims, is powerless to save the soul. The gospel saves. Denominationalism is the power of man to defeat the prayer of Christ: " Nei- ther for these only do I pray, but for them also that believe on me through their word, that th'-y may all be one; even as thou, Father, art in me and I in thee, that they also may be in us; that the world may be- lieve that thou didst send me." Before the mind of Christ there was a visible unity. It was to be among 120 THN GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA. those that had been made believers in him through the word of the apostles. It was to be such union as when seen by the world would lead it to believe that the Father had sent him. No legerdemain of words, no force of logic, can palm off a union that creates unbelief at home and abroad as the union for which Jesus prayed. No unity such as that here required can occur except where the reign of Christ through his word takes place in the soul. This has been our position from the beginning, and its rightness becomes more apparent with the devel- opments of the century. Witness this clipping from the " Pacific " (San Francisco, Congregational) March 27th, 1889: "This, then, is my plan. Let Congregationalists declare their distinctive name forever obselete from the Japanese tongue. Let Presbyterians and any other church that wishes to be a party to the union do the same. Let the Japanese Christians be reorganized into a Christian church 'on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner-stone, in which all the building fitly framed together, groweth into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom ye are also builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit."' Such are the words of C. A. Huntington. This is our plea repeated in Japan and enforced by men who, like Mr. Camp- bell, are convinced that the present corrupt forms of religion presenting a divided front before a united heathen foe can never secure that change of heart so essential to entrance into heaven. The result of this proposition, if accepted, will be a return to the simple 121 -2RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. doctrines, faith, and worship, and spirit of the New Testament church. Ecclesiasticism must go. It is post-apostolic. Destroy all names and there is a de- struction of the distinctive ideas which they were created to represent. No reason exists to-day for sep- arate religious bodies that differ among themselves as those in Japan do, that did not exist in the day when the church was beguif in Jerusalem. If there are dif- ferences of taste, education, temperament, now, these all existed then. Sin was one in its origin, one in its rmin, one in its guilt, and one in its power and effects. The cure of sin through the gospel, God's power to save, was one, and when the saved met there were no middle walls of partition between them, forcing the evangelists to go with divided effort before the united heathen. The gifted Arthur T. Pierson tried to cut the knot by suggesting a division of the missionary territory. This is impossible and unscriptural. It does not meet, but evades the difficulty. There is a like demand here for geographical division of terri- tory. It is not proposed at home, but only abroad. Truth must go forth unfettered. If the missionary preach at all, he must preach the truth that saves. His field is the world. He can tie himself within no geographical limits. The word of God is not bound. The only solution of the trouble is to " speak where the Bible speaks, and be silent where the Bible is silent." But, it may be asked, has the application of this principle been wholly good If we say yes, we, exalt this plea above the word itself, for " the gospel is the savor of life unto life and death unto death."' The Plea we make has wrought some bitter fruits, 122 THE GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA. because the power to do good implies the choice of evil. There can be no infallible plea. There is really no infallible book. The Bible is perfect; but it is not infallible, since in itself it neither does right nor wrong. The bitter fruits of our plea are found where men have made the silence of Scripture as binding in forbidding and enjoining action as the word of God. In the effort to restore the church as it was in the be- ginning, some have used the exclusive force of the principle where there was no right to such use. What the Bible forbids, we forbid; what the Bible enjoins, we enjoin. So far, there can be no error where facts, commands and examples lie upon the inspired page. But, if we take the silence of the Scriptures-the un- written law of man-we cannot urge that what the silence of the Bible forbids, we forbid; what the silence of the Bible enjoins, we enjoin. Silence nei- ther enjoins nor forbids. It is a nonentity-a very little nothing. We must, therefore, find a solution of this phase of the formula in the part which says, "Where the Bible speaks, we speak." Now, it is clear that those who struck out this prin- ciple never contemplated the erection of the silence of the word of God into a law that forbids or enjoins, and hence has power to bind and loose. It was to be in force in such cases as affected the worship and fel- lowship of the church only. Here it was assumed that God had prescribed all terms of fellowship and all essential elements of worship. Beyond this, all Christians as individuals, and all churches as aggre- gations of individuals, were to be left free to use or not use whatever did not supplant the plaix com- 123 REOOLLECTIONS OF BEN OF FAITH. mands, examples and facts of the word of God. In returning, then, to the simplicity and beauty of the New Testament church, we were not committed to stagnation and death. We were not bound hand and foot and laid upon the altar of ignorance and apathy to await the sanction of every man and woman who might at any time constitute a single congregation. The liberty secured by taking " the Bible alone, its faith, its purity, its practice without change," we did not surrender our right to use whatever the emergency might demand to secure the growth of the individual and the extention of the kingdom of God, provided there was no destruction of the word of God, no com- mand, example or necessary inference of the Scrip- tures uprooted. Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. It is a liberty within the circle of edification and mutual helpfulness. With the origin, aim and methods of this move- ment before us, it is not surprising that it has enlisted so many advocates in this and in foreign lands. The wonder is that our plea has been able to survive so many hindrances and triumph over so many obstruc- tions. God is in it, and, like the reformation which preceded it, this plea is the expression of a wide- spread discontent with existing evils, and it furnishes a common ground of union for those who will accept. what is cardinal and drop from the realm of fellow- ship and the list of essentials the traditions, specula- tions and opinions that rear their unhallowed walls. between the children of God. Our plea is for union; yet truth is dearer to us than union resting upon an. incomplete and unscriptural basis. We ask no peo- 124 THE GENIUS AND SPIRIT OF OUR PLEA. pile to come to us. We only plead that the barriers erected by human tradition and human speculation be removed, and that the children of God, wherever found, be allowed to offer in their hearts and express with their lips and lives the prayer of Christ; that the exhortation of Paul to the Corinthians prevail over the souls of the redeemed; that hand to hand and heart to heart all who " preach Jesus," as Philip preached him to the eunuch, join to conquer this world for Christ. Such, then, is the spirit and genius of our plea as Disciples of Christ. It grew out of the deep conviction that the present divided condition of the church could not produce faith in the mission of the Lord Jesus as the Savior of the world. It rests on the undisputed fact that human nature is essen- tially the same that it was in the days. of the apostles, that the gospel. is unchanged and unchangeable; hence, what it took to save a man in that day, it takes now; what men were after salvation then, they are now. It, therefore, overleaps all creeds, cuts aloof from all facts in history as tests of fellowship, and refuses to be bound by any authority save that which resides in the inspired word of God. It builds upon a single proposition, the alpha and omega, the begin- ning and the end of all Scripture: Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ, the Son of the living God. What that enjoins, our plea enjoins; what that forbids, our plea. forbids. It accepts all logical consequences flowing from these premises, and with charity towards all and malice towards none, holds that this plea, blessed by God and sustained by the courage and sacrifice of men of faith is destined to conquer this globe. 125 CHAPTER VI. J. J. WYATT. LOVA Oi BRMTHRI2-INTEGRITY-ELOQUENCE. - Elder J. J. Wyatt was born in Illinois, but reared and educated in Fleming county, Ky. When quite young he entered the law office of Case Cavin, of Flemingsburg, and studied law. After he married Miss Emily Gooding, of Fleming county, Ky., he soon removed, perhaps in 1847, to Saint Joseph, Mo., and began the practice of law. Three or four years thereafter he and his amiable wife became members of the Christian Church in Saint Joseph, and from that time until he departed this life was faithful as a disciple of Christ. He was by no means a preacher of ordinary ability or influence. He was also in some respects a very peculiar man. He was very cautious in choosing his friends; when once chosen it required more than a whim or an evil report to induce him to abandon them. He was one of the most generous and forgiving of men. At the close of the war a Christian preacher, whose name shall not be mentioned, residing in North- west Missouri, was not well received by the churches until Bro. Wyatt commended him. A few years after- ward this same preacher, unmindful of fiavors re- ceived, spoke in a very unbecoming manner of Bro. Wyatt's ability and pulpit efforts. This was told Bro. Wyatt, with not the least being subtracted, but 126 J. J. WYATT. a little being added, no doubt. This is not unfre- quently the case. Afterward I heard Bro. Wyatt speak in high terms of this brother's knowledge of the Bible, of his pointed argument, eloquent dis- courses, but not one word of unkindness. This was Christ-like. But I presume to say that there are times in the life of every preacher when he is fearfully assailed by temptations. If there be a weak point this will be surely known, and most vigorously attacked by the enemy of souls. Bro. Wyatt had been a lawyer, a probate judge, a postmaster, but nevertheless was constantly engaged in preaching. Shortly before his death, while holding a meeting of days with him at Old Union, some of the leading politicians, and some of his chosen political friends in the district, addressed him a most flattering letter, urging him to consent to make the race for Congress, declaring that he would certainly be elected. Some brethren imagined that he might possibly be persuaded to run, as all parties were of the opinion that he could easily be elected At the proper time, approaching him, I inquired as to his feelings in regard to becoming a candidate, etc., etc. I did this to satisfy others, not myself, for I was well satisfied as to the course he would pursue. He replied with unusual calmness that he had no thought of en- tering the arena, or becoming a target for the wicked and the unscrupulous to shoot at; that he differed from some of his friends as to his duties toward his country. He was of the opinion that a lawyer, in be- coming a preacher, might readily succeed in preaching the gospel, but it was not well for a preacher to aban- 127 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. don his profession for that of the law; that he pro- posed never to give up the ministry for any earthly consideration. He then alluded to the many tempta- tions in the pathway of the political aspirant; and those Christians who are ambitious of earthly honors, he conceived, were in very great danger of going astray. He also stated modestly that he thought he knew as well as others what he could gain among men by catering to the public. But no, he was not dis- posed to engage in such work. The preacher's position was one of real honor here, at least among those really honorable. He had passed many happy hours with his brethren in Christ, en- deavoring to make his fellow-beings happy in this world and in that which is to come. In this work he proposed to live and to die. It was to him far more than meat and drink-it was a real joy, an unspeaka- ble privilege to engage thus in doing good; an honor, a bliss, which this world could neither give nor take away. I need not add that he continued faithful in the ministry until called to a higher field and a grander work. How kind to the widow, the orphan, the oppressed, the broken-hearted! Methinks I hear that voice, "sweet as the music of an weolian harp," pleading the cause of the orphan before his brethren. How deeply in earnest! But you are not thinking of the speaker. As he advances in his plea, his soul seems to be on fire. He is eloquent, yes, truly eloquent, without an effort to be so, but of his eloquence you are not think- ing. His words are well chosen, very fitting, although very plain and simple; but just now you are not per- 128 J. J. WYATT. miitted to debate-in fact you are unconsciously mov- ing with the speaker; he is in truth bearing you off, you know not how or why, but it is being done and in triumph. Now, as the speaker takes his seat, look around at the audience; there is manifest the pro- foundest feeling. All eyes are filled with tears. All hearts are captivated. It could not be otherwise. But who can divine just what has done the work The voice, the manner, the speech, the magnetism, perhaps all combined; at least the great assembly is over- whelmed. Infidelity can only be silenced in two ways. First, those who stand in the sacred desk must preach the gospel in its purity and simplicity. They must cease to proclaim speculations and theories-must stick to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Second, all who profess to be the disciples of Christ must live lives of purity and holiness-must keep themselves unspotted by the contaminating influences of the world. Profound, exhaustive essays, books well written and in the most attractive style, may accomplish much good-may for a time stop the mouths of babbling skeptics, help the unprejudiced or the feeble-minded to free themselves from heavy burdens or perplexing difficulties. They may throw light on the pathway of the bewil- dered traveler, assist him in finding the safe way, or securing a firm footing; but still there is a more ex- cellent way. That persons may enter the church of Christ, the Great Teacher has ordained that the gospel shall be preached to all nations. But entering the church is 129 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. not all and in all in this world. The disciples of Christ must so live that light shall shine forth from the lives they live in the church. Light generated by the truth as it is in Jesus, together with the sanctify- ing influences of the Holy Spirit within the bosom of each. Here is to be seen and felt that divine power which will surely chase away the darkness and light up with splendor the whole earth. Here is realized an argument which infidelity cannot answer. The infidel bows his head in confession, and confesses his inability to answer an argument so profound, so sweeping. And. does not the world to-day need just such an argu- ment to silence the gainsayers and commend the re- ligion of Christ As has been said, beautiful essays, faultless reasoning, labored reviews, attractive books, all have their place and serve a noble purpose. But the world must see-Christ intended it should see- Christianity exemplified in the lives of its professors. It was my privilege to labor for many years with Elder J. J. Wyatt. His preaching was usually good- never heard him make a failure; at times it was of a very high order. But his life was unstained. In all the walks of life, at home, abroad, with friends, among enemies, in the pulpit, out of it, around the fireside or on the highway, J. J. Wyatt was the same consistent- Christian gentleman. Only one preacher with whom I became well acquainted in Missouri left such a deep and abiding impress on churches and communities as J. J. Wyatt. That man was Elder Frank R. Palmer. To-day he is living, moving, speaking among the churches in Jackson, Cass and Clay counties, as Elder 130 J. J. WYATT. 131 Wyatt, though dead, is leading and counseling the churches in Buchanan, Platte and Olinton counties. Their lives were without spot or blemish. It may be said of them truthfully, "i They were great in goodness, good in greatness, but the crown of their greatness was their goodness." CHAPTER VII. JAMES E. MA TTHE WS. EXALTED CHARACTER-PURITY-HIS LIFE AND LABORS BY OTHERS. Elder James E. Matthews, of Mississippi, was a preacher of far more than ordinary ability, but best of all that can be said of him, he was one of the purest of men, so lived and died. Political honors he enjoyed, honors never sought, but which were thrust upon him. Acknowledged to be a truly great man, his head never became dizzy, for he was ever humble as a little child. His command of the best words to express his ideas was wonderful. In listening to him I have now and then found myself forgetful of the theme under con- sideration, thinking only of his beautiful sentences and most appropriate words and phrases. President W. J. Barbee, who knew him well, furnishes the fol- lowing sketch: James E. Matthews was born in Kentucky, in the year 1799, and died in De Soto county, Miss., June 30, 1867. In early life he became acquainted with the religious views of Barton W. Stone, and about the age of twenty-five was baptized by one of the associates of that distinguished servant of God. Soon after his profession of Christianity he com- Inenced proclaiming the gospel of Christ, and from the year 1827 till the day of his death he ceased not to 132 JAMES E. MATTHEWS. teach Christ and proclaim the unsearchable riches of the Redeemer. In a notice of his death, the editor of the "Jackson (Miss.) Clarion " said: "In our columns to-day will be found an account of the death of one of the most honored and respected citizens of Mississippi, HON. JAMES E. MATTHEWS, for- merly Member of the Legislature, Auditor of Publie Accounts, etc. He died at the age of sixty-eight, leav- ing a name around which clusters the memory of vir- tue, holiness and a life well spent in the service of his. people." Talbot Fanning, one of the distinguished preachers. of the Reformation, at that time president of Franklin College and editor of the " Gospel Advocate," said of him: "' He was the teacher of our early youth, our in- structor in the Christian religion in riper years, and upon an understanding confession of the faith, with his own hands he baptized us into the name of the! Father, Son and Holy Spirit, October, 1827. Bro. Mat- thews was but little known out of the States of Ala- bama and Mississippi, but when known his distin- guished ability was felt and acknowledged, both as a. preacher and statesman. As an intellectual man, we doubt whether we ever knew his superior. In his long political career he never for a moment slighted the banner of our King; and whether in the councils of his country, or laboring as a minister of peace, he was. a model man, always doing good." During a period of fifteen years, from 1852 to 1867, the writer had the pleasure of hearing this able minis- 133: 3 REOLLkOTIONS OF KEN OF FAITH. ter of God's Word. He was beyond doubt one of the most gifted men in defense of the gospel of Christ I ever heard. He was bold, intelligent, logical. His positions were well taken, his points arranged in fine order, his arguments constructed and elaborated with precision, and his conclusions rendered inevitable. He was pre-eminently a Bible man, and advocated unison upon the word of God, upon Christ, having regard to difference of opinion. He was a pioneer preacher, addressing multitudes in the groves, barns, store-houses, as well as in court- houses and town halls. He traveled horseback and on foot, with saddle-bags containing a few under-gar- ments for a change. He was never tiresome, although he usually preached for two hours. The people heard him gladly. These were the days of long sermons and basket dinners. He was eminently successful. His converts were counted by the hundreds. To me his memory is precious. W. J. BARBEE. 134 CHAPTER VIII. HARRISON W. OSBORNE. HARDSHIPS-BEAUTIFUL LIFE-PEACEFUL DEATH. H. W. Osborne was born in Carnesville, Ga., July 11, 1800, and when quite young became a member of the Christian Church, sometimes called the "Chris- tian Connection," or "New Lights." These Christian people were pious and God-fearing, directed in faith and practice by the Word of God. Into the union that took place between the friends of Stone and Campbell,.in 1832, H. WV. Osborne entered most heartily. One of the leading spirits in the Christian Connec- tion, at that time, was Elder B. W. Stone, of George- town, Ky. Bro. Osborne attended the school con- ducted by this gifted speaker and writer, and was largely educated by him. He began to exercise his talents as a speaker when only eighteen years of age, was at the great meeting at Cane Ridge, Bourbon Co., Ky., conducted by B. W. Stone and others, and was then called the "boy-preacher." He associated and labored with some of the leading men in this reformatory movement, such as A. Camp- bell, B. W. Stone, Walter Scott, Jacob Creath, Jr., Frank R. Palmer, Marcus P. Wills, John Rogers, etc. He met with numerous and grievous difficulties in proclaiming the pure gospel of Christ. Sectarian op- position was bitter, very bitter, in places. With 185 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. others in the Christian Church, he was nicknamed and looked upon as the offscouring of earth, simply because of his religious views. But this in nowise deterred him in preaching Christ and him crucified. If his Master had been misrepresented and persecuted, and bore it meekly, he ought to do the same joyfully. October 25, 1821, he was married to Miss Eliza Cassell, with whom he lived happily until the Lord called her hence in October 6, 1858. The balance of his life he remained unmarried. His wife was one of the excellent of earth, possessing a Christ-like disposi- tion, loving all who were worthy, and being loved by all the pure and the good who knew her. Such was the companion of H. W. Osborne in his labors and trials in the prime of life. He was truly blessed. No mortal can estimate how largely she assisted her hus- band in every good work, especially in his preaching the word and saving souls. Eternity alone can do this. The lot of the Christian preacher fifty or sixty years ago, in the "Far West," was by no means free from care and hardships. To-day it is not a sinecure. God be near the devoted, self-denying Christian preacher's wife. When his aged instructor and beloved preacher, B. W. Stone, passed away, he was not permitted to be with him. But when the last tribute was paid him, he insisted in putting away his mortal remains in the cemetery at Antioch Church, near Jacksonville, Ill. In the days of his youth, when poor and in need of friends, B. W. Stone, seeing that he possessed native ability and integrity, educated him and encouraged 136f HARRISON W. OSBORNE. him in preaching. They were fast friends until the death of Father Stone. During sixty years he was actively engaged in the ministry, and those most intimately acquainted with him regarded him as one of the purest of men and one of the most faithful of preachers. He married great numbers of persons, preached many funerals, and baptized his thousands. Finally, the Lord in his infinite wisdom called him up higher. He was permitted, by the grace of God, to die in peace and hope, June 3, 1883, in his 83d year, at his son's, D. W. Osborne, Lathrop, Mo., beloved and lamented. Mason Summers, the "sweet singer," was with him in his last moments and sang for him. -many of the songs of Zion. No wonder, when nearing the " better land," he spoke of seeing the fairest and most fra- grant of flowers, the brightest, most beautiful of an- gelic faces and forms, of seeing his beloved wife, hearing her sweet voice, which had so often cheered him in the lonely walks of life, or in passing through the deep waters of affliction. He was nearing rapidly the "border-land "-almost touching the " boundary- line" between two worlds. The gate of the " City of God" must have been opening to him and the re- deemed ones preparing to greet him. "Blessed are the dead that die in the Lord." Not long until the dead in Christ shall come forth, clothed in immor- tality, that they may enjoy life eternal. Then, and not until then, shall we be permitted to see the face of our dear departed brother. 10 137 CHAPTER IX. JOHX ROG1ERS. HIS BIRTH-EARLY TRAINING, OR WANT OF TRAINING- CONVERSION TO CHRIST-WITH REFLECTIONS. I was born in Clarke Co., Ky., on the waters of the Stoner, some six or eight miles from Winchester, on the Oth of December, 1800. My parents, Ezekial and Rebecca Rogers, were natives of Virginia. My mother's maiden name was Williamson. She was raised in Prince Edward and Charlotte counties, and from early life was a devoted member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, of which communion she continued a member until her death, at an advanced age. She was an im- mersed Methodist. My father was also, at an early period of his life, a very devoted member and class- leader in the same church. I have heard my older brother say my father felt it his duty to preach the gospel to sinners, but having a poor education and high conceptions of the importance of the work and the qualifications necessary for it, he shrank from the task, became careless and skeptical, under the influ- ence of the writings of Thomas Paine's "Age of Rea- son," and kindred infidel works, and thus, in middle life wholly abandoned all pretentions to Christianity. He was a man of vigorous, physical constitution and a strong mind, and scrupulously honest in his deal- ings. He was a very industrious and neat farmer for 188 JOHN ROGERS. This page in the original text is blank. .JOHN ROGERS. his time, and but for the habit of drinking to excess might have secured for himself and family a hand- some living. As it was, when in 1810 he died, he left us but little. In the fall of 1801, my father removed from Clarke county, Ky., to Missouri, then Louisiana, and under the Spanish Government. He settled within twenty miles of St. Louis, and about a mile from the Missouri River, and purchased six hundred acres of excellent bottom and uplands, upon which he soon had a very fine farm and was prospering in the world. But becoming involved in difficulties with a certain Moses Kenney, who went from Bourbon county, Ky., to that country, and suffering, as he believed, serious private injuries from said Kenney and his colleagues, he determined to leave Missouri, and in the fall of 1809, sold out and returned to Kentucky and settled on the Brushy Fork of Hinkston, about half way be- tween Carlisle and Millersburg. Said Kenney left Mis- souri and came to Kentucky the same fall, and when in the spring of 1810, my father returned to Missouri with my oldest brother, Samuel, to close up his busi- ness, Kenney followed him there and most cruelly murdered him by scalding him in the face and eyes, and then beating him with a club. My father survived but a few days. In the meantime, Kenney escaped to Kentucky and, though there was a man present and witnessed the horrid murder, yet said Kenney was never brought to justice, as he never could be got back to the Territory where the deed was done. He subsequently married and settled in Harrison county, Ky., and died of cholera in 1833. I was next to the youngest of a family of eight chil- 139 1RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. dren, four boys and four girls. My religious opportu- nities, up to my seventeenth or eighteenth year, were the poorest of the poor. I never remember to have heard a sermon, or felt any interest in the subject of Christianity, until I was some seventeen years old. About that time, in 1817, a great revival took place at Concord, under the labors of Elders Reuben Dooley, James Hughes, Stone and others. My brother Samuel and his wife, two of my sisters and a number of my acquaintances were the subjects of that revival, and united with the church at Concord. My brother Samuel, though he had been a remarkably wild and wicked man, soon commenced preaching, to which he has devoted himself with great earnestness and effi- ciency up to the present time . Perhaps few men in the State have been instrumental in converting more persons than he. In 1816, my brother indentured me to Henry and Moses Batterton, to learn the cabinet business, in Millersburg, Ky. I was bound for near six years, till I should be twenty-one. This prevented me from being often at their meetings in 1817 and 1818, during the progress of the revival alluded to. Still, occasionally I attended them, and witnessed the disor- ders of jerking, dancing, swooning, etc. Yet it was palpable to a serious observer that, connected with all these disorders, there was much of piety and deep re- ligious feeling. The spirit of prayer pervaded all hearts. Not only were my religious opportunities, as I have stated, up to my seventeenth or eighteenth year, the poorest of the poor, but my opportunities for mental improvement-my educational advantages- were little better. I could read, and write, and cipher 140 JOHN ROGERS. to the rule of three. This was the sum of my learning when I was put to my trade. I had, however, a great thirst for education, and during my apprenticeship, which lasted nearly three years, I occupied much of my leisure time in reading such books as were thrown in my way. Dr. John H. Sanders had just located at Millersburg, as a promising young physician, and, ob- serving that I was fond of books, encouraged me to read, and helped me to such books as he thought would be useful to me. I have a vivid and grateful recollection of his kindness and encouragement. He was upon the point of uniting with the Christian Church about the time I united with it. But his mind took a turn, and he was not associated with any church for many years after. He finally joined the Baptist Church, and subsequently embraced the views of the Current Reformation, and died among us, highly re- spected as a physician, a man and a devoted Chris- tian. I believe he died in Indianapolis, where his widow, who is also a member with us, still lives . During my apprenticeship, though I was not a very bad boy, I was forming some habits which might have proved fatal to my welfare, both in time and eternity, had not my religious convictions disposed me to aban- don them. Card-playing was common in the family in which I lived. I contracted the habit of playing for amusement, and was beginning to risk a trifle by way of giving interest to the game. I was also be- coming fond of playing billiards-a game very com- mon about that time, and to me very exciting and fascinating. I sometimes sat up at this amusement 141 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. till far beyond the turn of the night. I paid my way by making maces for the table. At the time I learned this game, the table was kept by Robert Batson who, at that time, was wild, pleasure-loving and rather reckless. Subsequently, however, he became a re- spectable Baptist preacher and, in the extensive divis- ions which occurred in the Baptist Church in Kentucky in the years 1829, '30 and '31, he went with the friends of A. Campbell, and into the union which was subse- quently formed between the friends of Stone and Campbell in 1832, he entered most heartily. He did not, however, live long to enjoy the benefits or witness the triumphs of that glorious union. In the first gen- eral sweep of that terrible scourge, the Asiatic cholera, over Kentucky in 1833 he, with thousands upon thou- sands, fell a victim to it. He died in Millersburg, in the prime of his manhood, in the triumphs of the Christian's faith and hope. "Sweet be thy slumbers." Where these habits of gaming might have led me, but for the favor of God which stopped me in my wild career and turned me about, God only knows. In 1818, Father Stone and others of our preachers commenced preaching at Millersburg. The Baptists, Walter Warder and J. Verdeman, and several Meth- odist preachers, also preached there regularly and fre- quently. I heard all these, and in the fall of 1818, resolved to seek religion, as the phrase was, and I was instructed. Alas! how little I knew of the simple method of salvation, as set forth by Christ and his apostles. A number joined the Baptist Church, under the preaching of Walter Warder, who was doubtless a good man and a good preacher for the times. But ex- 142 JOHN ROGERS. periences they related gave me no light on the gospel method of salvation. Indeed, in all the teachings I heard, everything was at loose ends. I was exhorted to pray on, and look up to God for some inexplicable nondescript, palpable, sensible manifestation by which I should know my sins were forgiven. I shall never forget that Lord's day evening, calm and beauti- ful, in the fall of 1818, while hearing a sermon by a Methodist preacher, I fully resolved to turn to God and try to be a Christian. The deep fountains of feeling within me were broken up and I was all tenderness and tears. I retired to the woods. alone and spent the evening in weeping over my sins and trying to pray. Alas! my prayers seemed to get no higher than my head. I returned to town and availed myself of all the religious instruction I could get among Methodists, Baptists, or any that came in my way. I tried to pray regularly twice a day, and fancied sometimes I had made some proficiency in learning how to perform that duty. I attended all the meetings for prayers and preaching, and upon all occasions availed myself of the prayers of the preachers and the people for my conversion. Stone, Warder, Verdeman, Hunt and various others, for months together, received my hand in token of my desire to have their prayers for my sal- vation. But still that electric shock, or nondescript operation, by which I should know I was a new man- know my sins were forgiven-I received not. I went to a Baptist prayer-meeting, at old Father Cress's (the old house is still standing-1861), and after a number of prayers were offered, the congregation joined in 143 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. singing this beautiful and appropriate hymn, at least appropriate to my condition: "Sinner, hear the Saviors call, He now is passing by; He has seen thy grievous thrall, And hears thy mournful cry." The hymn was all beautiful and appropriate, but the last verse especially attracted my attention, and the truth it contained afforded me much comfort. It reads thus: Raise thy downcast eyes and see What throngs his throne surround. These, tho' sinners once like thee, Have full salvation found. Yield not then to unbelief, While he says there yet is room, Tho' of sinners thou art chief, Since Jesus calls thee, come." I appropriated the truth of the song, and rejoiced in the divine mercy; and as soon as the hymn was sung I said, "Let us pray." We were all at once on our knees, and the death-like silence that followed paralyzed me with fear, and every idea forsook me. I rallied, however, and did the best I could. A daughter of old Father Cress, who had been a school- mate of mine, some time after the meeting, joined the Baptist Church, and dated her conviction to that first public prayer I ever made. A short time after this meeting I joined the Christian Church, and was im- mersed by Father Stone, in Hinkston, in December, 1818. I was about eighteen years old. But why did I-why do many others-seek religion, or seek par- don, for months, without obtaining it, or a satisfactory evidence of it This is a question of immense prac- 144 JOHN ROGERS. tical interest, and a scriptural answer to it, recognized by the different religious parties, and acted upon, would introduce a new era in the history of the mod- ern church. I speak not hastily, nor by blind im- pulse. I know what I say and whereof I affirm. I have examined this subject in the light of the gospel of Christ for a full quarter of a century. Hear me, then, while I present the simple truth regarding it. My argument shall not be metaphysical nor specula- tive, but based on facts that may be known and read of all concerned. Facts are stubborn things, and can not mislead. 1. It is a fact that very many who now profess to be Christians, and give clear evidence of piety, were, as they aver, sincerely seeking religion, or the evi- dence of their acceptance with God, for days, or weeks, or months, or sometimes even years. 2. It is also a fact that although they had the teachings and prayers of the most orthodox and evan- gelical ministers, still it was long before they found peace, or, as the phrase used to be, "got through," or "got religion." 3. It is also a fact that these persons. even after they obtained comfort, were often thrown into doubt, whether they were not deluded. 4. It is a most palpable fact that orthodoxy en- courages the idea, and acts upon it, that penitents are to expect some mystical impulse, or touch of the Spirit, to give them evidence of their pardon. If not, why call them to the "altar," or to the "anxious-seat," and talk to them, and pray to God to speak peace to their souls-to send down power, converting power- 145 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. to baptize them with the Holy Spirit and fire, etc., if they do not believe that, in some mystic, inexplicable way, God will give them the evidence of pardon Dr. Gill, in his "Body of Divinity," on the word "pardon," says: " The Spirit pronounces the sentence of it in the conscience." And hence, we repeat, all this re- vival machinery is put into requisition to move Jeho- vah to send his Spirit to speak the sentence of pardon in the conscience of true penitents. What a burlesque upon the wisdom and benevolence of God! 5. It is also a fact that as one false position re- quires others, so the false positions already stated have given rise to a phraseology, a style of speaking on the subject of our acceptance with God, wholly different from that of the New Testament. The most pious and sober-minded of the sects speak of their "hope;" they hope that God, for Christ's sake, has forgiven their sins. The celebrated, very learned, talented and pious Dr. Macknight thought, as he says, "W We shall never know we are pardoned till the last judgment." The very orthodox and pious John New- ton thus sings doubt: "'Tis a point I long to know; Oft it causes anxious thought: Do I love the Lord or no Anm I his, or ani I not" These five facts show us, with sufficient clearness, the difficulties into which the most approved teach- ings of the most evangelical sects involves penitents and Christians in regard to the means and evidences of pardon. My third and fifth facts show that ortho- doxy leaves the most pious in anxious doubt and 146 JOHN ROGERS. uncertainty, and has given rise to the language of dubiety and doubt. I now affirm and will proceed to show- 1. That the Christian style of speaking on this subject is wholly different-is the language of strong, satisfying faith-of moral certainty. The Christians addressed by Paul are said to be "made free from sin," to be "justified freely by his grace," to be 'saved," to have "redemption in the blood of Christ, even the forgiveness of their sins." Addressing his son Titus, Paul says, "Who hath saved us." Of the Ephesians he says, "By grace are ye saved." Writ- ing to his son Timothy, he says, "Who hath saved us." The Christians in the "dispersion," addressed by Peter, had received "the end of their faith, the salva- tion of their souls." In his second letter, having urged them to give all diligence and to add to their faith courage, knowledge and all the graces that adorn and perfect the Christian character, he says most emphatically, by way of warning, "But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins." How could they have forgotten they had been purged from their old sins, if they had never knower it It is a fact, then, as clear as a sunbeam, from these and almost numberless other portions of Scripture re- garding the style of the first Christians, that they were pardoned, and knew it, and rejoiced in it with joy un- speakable, and therefore never spoke in the language of doubt or fear upon the subject1. But this fact is directly in the teeth of our facts three and five, and 147 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. demonstrate most clearly that the most pious of the orthodox parties of our times do not understand and receive the truth in regard to this question as the first Christians did. For certainly the same truths, under the same circumstances, would produce the same effects. They could not produce the full assurance of faith in the one case, and the most distressing doubts in the other-never, certainly never! It is also shown by a reference to my first and fourth orthodox facts, that penitents are instructed and thus induced to expect some mystic touch of the Holy Spirit to give them a sense of pardon, through their agonizings, and wrestlings, and the prayers of the preachers and the good people, else they would never engage in such a course. Now, then, I aver as my second Scripture fact that, under the reign of Christ and the administration of the holy apostles, from the day of Pentecost, it was not so. Did Peter, on the day of Pentecost, when the " church of Christ was formed and settled," as Dr.-Clarke says, invite the three thousand penitents, who were pierced to the heart, to come forward, and they (the apostles) would instruct them and pray for them, and that the Lord in his own good time and way would send down his Spirit and convert them and give them an evidence of pardon, and that then they would baptize them and take them into the church Not a word of it! Did any one of the apostles, or evangelists of the New Reign, ever do it Never-unequiioocally never! Let those who doubt it read the Acts of the Apos- tles-the Book of Conversions. As, then, the penitents under apostolic teaching were not directed to seek 148 JOHN RCGET B. pardon, as the most pious and godly of the orthodox churches teach penitents among them to seek it, is it not perfectly. clear that they do not understand and teach the great elementary principles of the gospel as the apostles did Certainly they do not. My first and second facts (which for brevity's sake I call orthodox) show that under the most approved evangelical teaching, with all the aids of such teach- ing and the prayers of such teachers, many sincere penitents go mourning and disconsolate for days, sometimes weeks, months, and even years, before they obtain relief, or "get through," or "get religion," as the phrase is. Now I am bold to say in the presence and in the fear of God and for his glory, that these '; evangelical, orthodox facts," are directly in the teeth of one of the plainest and most important practical gospel facts. Evangelical orthodoxy, with all its learning, and elo- quence, and piety, and mighty influence, keeps its most sincere and contrite souls, who are "most anx- ious to be Christians," struggling for days, weeks, months or years before they are relieved. 3. Apostolic orthodoxy gave immediate relief to every sincere penitent, without a solitary exception. Look at the proof. The three thousand, on the day of Pentecost, who were pierced to the heart, said, "Men and brethren, what shall we do " Peter, the man with the keys, said, "Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus the Christjfor the remission of sins. Then they that gladly received the word were baptized, and the same day were added unto them about three thousand souls." Not one sincere seeker 149 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. left! All that sought the way of life found it! Look at the case of the Samaritans: "Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Jesus unto them, and when the people believed Philip preach- ing the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus, they were baptized, both men and women. And there was great joy in that city." None left to mourn, who desired to be saved, and upon Heaven's terms. So of the Ethiopian eunuch, the treasurer of Queen Candace. He was a proselyte to thie Jews' religion, and was returning from Jerusalem, where he had been to worship, when Philip met him. Anxious to be instructed in the true religion, he desired Philip to take a seat with him in his chariot. He was read- ing the 53rd chapter of Isaiah, where it speaks of the humiliation and death of the Messiah. With great emotion and emphasis he says to Philip: "I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this Of himself, or of some othter man Philip opened his mouth and began at the same Scripture, and preached unto him Jesus. And as they went on their way [Philip, in the meantime, no doubt, expounding to him the way of salvation through Christ, showing him how he died for our sins, was buried, rose again for our justification, how, after his resurrection, he commissioned his apos- tles to go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature, Gentile as well as Jew, and to say to every one, without distinction, "He that believeth the gospel and is baptized," by way of indicating a death to sin and a putting off of the body of the sins of the flesh, and a resurrection from sin to a new life, shall be 150 JOHN ROGERS. saved], the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized" "Nothing," said Philip, "if your mind and heart are right. If thou believest with all thy heart thou mayest" be bap- tized. And he said, from his heart, "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he com- manded the chariot to stand still. And they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. And when they were comne up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more, and he [the saved eunuch] went on his way rejoicing." No trouble here to find the way. Philip made it plain. The eunuch, with all his heart and entire person, entered into it and went on his way rejoicing in the pardon of his sins. So the Philippian jailer, when he witnessed the overwhelming evidences that Paul and Silas, whom they had treated so rudely, were true men and that their God had interposed in their behalf, he called for a light and sprang in, and came trembling and fell down before them, and brought them out, and said, " Sirs, what must I do to be -saved " Being a pagan, they tell him, first of all, that he must renounce his paganism, his idols, and believe on the Lord Jesus, who had come from the bosom of the Father to reveal to man the way of life; that " there is no name under heaven, given among men, by which we must be saved" but the name of Jesus. And that he might un- derstandingly embrace the Lord Jesus and rejoice in his salvation, "they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. And he [the 151 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. jailer] took them, the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes and was baptized, he and all his, straightway. And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them and rejoiced, be- lieving in God with all his house." All is plain and simple here. So in the case of the Corinthians: "Hearing, they believed and were baptized." So Saul of Tarsus. Ananias is sent to him, after his vision, and says: "Brother Saul, receive thy sight. And the same hour I looked upon him. And he he said, The God of our fathers hath chosen thee, that thou shouldest know his will, and see that just one, and shouldest hear the voice of his mouth. For thou shalt be a witness unto all men, of what thou hast seen and heard. And now, why tarriest thou Arise and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord. And he arose and was baptized, and straightway he preached Christ in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God." We reaffirm, then, that while the history of conversions, under the administration of orthodoxy, shows that the most sincere and earnest seekers are often, with all the helps orthodoxy can afford them, days, weeks, months, and sometimes years, obtaining what they seek, according to their own showing, the Acts of Apostles does not report a single instance of one who desired to be delivered from sin, and had an apostolic teacher to instruct him, that was not forth- with a Christian. Is it not perfectly clear, then, that orthodoxy, so-called, does not present the gospel to penitents as the apostles did For, most certainly, if the gospel presented to true penitents in the days of 152 JOHN ROGECR. the apostles at once afforded relief, the same gospel now, presented in the same way to persons in the same condition, will produce the same results. Will our pious orthodox friends look calmly at these facts, and learn the way of the Lord more perfectly Lord, hasten the time when thy people shall know the truth and be more perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. 6. I have said I united with the "Christian Church " in 1818. I took this step, as a mere youth, because I thought Stone and his compeers occupied the true ground. All my young associates joined the Baptist Church, while I, solitary and alone, against the re- monstrances of all my associates and all the sects, who spoke of Stone and his positions in terms of the strongest reprobation, united with that "sect every- where spoken against." 7. True, at the time I united with the Christian Church, I was not very competent to judge of the cor- rectness of its positions; yet, after the lapse of a little more than forty years, I rejoice to-day  I took that stand. Although I think I have learned much since that time, I rejoice to believe all my progress in the right direction has been facilitated by my position regarding the Bible as the "only infallible"-nay, as the only rule of faith and practice. But to return from this lengthy digression to the thread of the nar- rative. 8. As soon as I joined the church I became greatly concerned about the salvation of the world, and espe- cially my young associates. Happy in a Savior's love, happy in the glorious hope of eternal life, I 11 153 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. wished all to participate in the same bliss. And per- fectly satisfied as I was that "it is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptation that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, even the chief of sin- ners," I was anxious to publish this faithful saying to my young associates, and all sinners, in the hope they would accept it and be happy. But how should I, indentured as I was for nearly three years to come, so young, so ignorant, so poor, and every way so un- prepared, attempt so great a work as that of pro- claiming the gospel to sinners But my heart was in the great work and the providence of God opened my way. My brother Samuel, who was my guardian, sold my little patrimony of land for 200 and bought my time from the Messrs. Batterton for 150. I gathered up my clothing, such as apprentices usually had, took my leave of the family in which I had lived for near three years, and in which I had been treated kindly, and went with my brother Samuel to the house of our brother-in-law, John McIntyre. Here our mother lived, and here, on Brushy Fork, near the old Baptist meet- ing-house where, in my boyhood, Elders John Barnett and Thomas Ammons preached, we stayed all night. Here, before I proceed, I feel like lingering among the the scenes of my youth, in the far-off, shadowy past, along the banks of the Brushy Fork, from its junction with the South Fork of the same name, near the resi- dences of my uncle, Robert McIntyre, and Robert Elliott, and William Victor, and up the North Fork by Samuel Rule's, Spencer Robbin's mill, up by our residence to the old Baptist meeting-house, the hall of which I believe is still standing, though it has been 154 JOHN ROGERS. occupied but little for a quarter of a century. We settled upon the North Fork of the Brushy Fork in 1810, and from that time till I was apprenticed in Mil- lersburg in 1816, the territory I have described was the principal scene of my labors, my follies and sports, and the families named my principal acquaintances and associates. Almost a half century has elapsed since my father settled on Brushy Fork, and now, at this writing , not one of all these families just referred to can be found in Kentucky, save that of William Victor. The heads of all these families have gone to their long homes, save Mrs. Wm. Victor, who still lives upon the same farm, and I believe in the same house in which she lived near fifty years ago. The farms of the other families have passed into other hands, and their descendants are scattered in other lands. Thus passes the world away. Here upon our little farm I used to labor through the week, and spend my Sundays, sometimes at home, sometimes among the boys of the neighborhood; in the winter, often on the ice; in the summer, often in the creek, or fishing along its banks. In the old house alluded to, I used, occasionally, to attend the Baptist meeting, but a few hundred yards from our residence, not to hear the preaching, for this had no attractions for me, but to play with some favorite associates in the woods till the preaching was over. There was then an at- traction, which often brought me from my play and riveted my attention till it ceased. It was the sing- ing, and especially the singing of a certain song, in a certain tune, by a certain female, who was a member of the Baptist Church, then meeting at that old house. 165 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. There is nothing, of all that has occurred in the far distant past, that this day more vividly impresses my mind than these incidents of almost half a century ago. I see, as if it were yesterday, that neat, well- looking matron, of middle age, fair complexion, round face, ruddy cheeks, with soft blue eyes and sweet coun- tenance, rather below ordinary height, and a little more than ordinarily heavy, as she stood up in the congregation, in her purest white, and sang with tones as "sweet as angels use," that beautiful old hymn, that will never wear out, whose first verse runs thus: "There is a land of pleasure, Where peace and joy forever roll; 'Tis there I have my treasure, And there I long to rest my soul. Long darkness dwelt around me, With scarcely once a cheering ray; But since my Savior found me, A lamp has shone along my way." But how shall I describe her voice and the effect of her singing It was shrill, and strong, and peculiarly feminine; it was heard above all the voices of that congregation and, after a lapse of near fifty years, I seem to hear it, peculiarly sweet and beautiful, as it reverberated from the walls of that old house, with all the freshness of yesterday. I learned the tune she sang to that good song, and have loved it and sung it ever since. But where, 0 where are the voices of that far-off congregation I heard in my youth And echo asks, Where Perhaps nineteen twentieths of them are still in death! But where, especially, is Mrs. Cheney, whose singing so entranced me, who once lived near " Irvin's Spring," and near what, in those days, 156 JOHN ROGERS. 157 was called "Tull's Meeting-house," and on the place now occupied by Laban Johnson, Jr. Where is her family If any of her descendants should ever see these lines, it may call up interesting reminiscences. CHAPTER II. Journey to Ohio-First Efforts at Public Speaking-Worked at Trade with D. Radcliffe some Months-In the Meantime Attended all the Meetings I Could, and Prayed and Exhorted as Opportu- nity Offered-First Tour, Embracing Two or Three Months, Per- formed on Foot-Became Acquainted with the Doolies, Worley, Kyle, Shidler-Returned in August to Wilmington and Worked for a Saddle and Bridle and got me a Horse-Attended a Camp- Meeting near Richmond, Ind.-Met I. P. Durbin on his First Cir- cuit-Attended Conference in September in Warren County, and was Licensed to Preach-License-Met John Hardy at Confer- ence and Other Preachers-Incidents of the Meeting and Subse- quent Items. 1. Late in the winter, or very early in the spring of 1819, we spent the night as alluded to in the previous chapter, and next morning set out, my brother Samuel and I, for his residence in Clinton county, Ohio, some four miles from Wilmington. My old mother gave me her blessing and lent me her horse, and we started on our journey. That night my brother Samuel had an appointment at Kentontown, I think, at the house of the father-in-law of Elder John Powel, who was then just beginning to preach, and who is now dead. There, for the first time in my life, a mere boy, a little over eighteen, I attempted publicly to speak a word in be- half of Christianity. I only distinctly remember that I was very much embarrassed. The next night he had an appointment near Minerva, in Mason county, and again I made another attempt, feeble, of course. After this he had no appointment, I think, till he got home. 2. I went to Wilmington and engaged to work as a journeyman with Mr. Daniel Radcliffe, who was carry- 158 JOHN ROGERS. ing on the cabinet business in the place. I worked for him several months, and in the meantime attended all the meetings I could, night and day, and exercised my poor gifts, as opportunity offered, in prayer and ex- hortation, and studying the Scriptures. My employer was skeptical-rather deistical-still he was very much of a gentleman, and a highly honorable man. And it is a pleasure to me, after the lapse of forty-two years (for this April, 1861, forty-two years ago, I was working in his shop), to bear this testimony to his moral worth. He was also a man of good mind and considerable information. He took a fancy to me, and treated me more like a brother or son than a stranger. He called me his preacher. I was very zealous, and having felt the consolations of Chris- tianity myself, I was anxious all others should enjoy them, and especially my employer, who was so kind to me, and for whom I felt so deep an interest. I there- fore often tried to get into a conversation with him, in the hope I might remove his difficulties. I was then very ignorant and could not have met the common in- fidel arguments he could have introduced. Upon one occasion, when I was pressing him for an argument, he addressed me about in these words: "John, I don't want to trouble you with. my difficulties. I could in- troduce arguments you could not answer, but I don't want to do it. I have no doubt you are happier than I am, and I don't want to interfere with your happi- ness." This was honest and kind. I often think of it and remember my old friend, and deeply regret that he has never become a Christian, so far as I know. I presume he yet lives in Illinois .- May he yet 159 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. become a Christian, and die enjoying its hopes and consolations, and in heaven realize its rewards! Wilmington at this time (the spring of 1819) was quite a new place; stumps were abundant in the streets. I remember I made a " secretary," as it was called, a piece of furniture like a bureau, with a large drawer above, with small drawers and pigeon-holes inside for papers. The front part of the large upper drawers was hung in such a manner it could be let down. This was the first article of the kind ever made, or perhaps ever seen, in Wilmington. It was made for David Stratton, a Quaker merchant of that place. 3. After having, by a few months' work, furnished myself with the necessary clothing, etc., for a cam- paign, early in the summer I started with my brother Samuel and others, and spent some two or three months in traveling and attending meetings, princi- pally in the counties of Clinton, Fayette, Greene, Champaign, Clark, Warren, Hamilton, Butler, Preble, Darke, Miami and Montgomery in Ohio, and Wayne county in Indiana. Indeed, I may say, these counties constituted the principal, if not the exclusive, field of my labors until late in the fall. But I chose to divide my labors in Ohio and a small portion of Indiana into two periods, or towns, the first embracing the summer principally, and the last the fall of 1819. The first was performed on foot, and I was dependent on my brethren with whom I traveled to carry my clothing. How I got along in this regard I have wholly forgot- ten. I know I had no carpet-sack. If they were then in use, I had never seen one to my knowledge. I am 160 JOHN ROGERS. sure I owned no saddle-bags. How my clothes were carried. therefore, on this my first missionary tour, my memory is utterly at fault. So it was I got along very well, and was very happy and had no regrets then, nor have I now, that I was not better off. Perhaps I am better off to-day, after the lapse of more than forty years, in many respects, than I would be had I been well off then. Prosperity is more dangerous to progress-true progress-progress in all that elevates and blesses society here, and prepares for the perfec- tion of bliss hereafter, than adversity. 4. During this tour I became acquainted with a number of preachers, among whom the following names come up: The venerable, the pious, the earn- est, the laborious, and self-sacrificing and able Elder Reuben Dooley. He died in 1822. He had been a preacher for more than twenty years, and perhaps shortened his days by his excessive labors. He was a most powerful and successful preacher, and died in the triumphs of the faith. His talents were of the exhortatory kind. His mind was pre-eminently prac- tical. His preaching was always exhortatory and practical. He had no taste for human theories in Christianity. No patience with cold-hearted specu- latists, who showed more interest in their unprofitable speculations than they did in "judgment, mercy and the love of God." He loved warm-hearted, whole- souled, practical Christians. He could not, therefore, be induced to turn aside from his great work of turn- ing men from darkness to light-from the power of Satan to God-to discuss questions which gender strife and eat out the heart of piety. As an evidence 161 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. of his feelings in this direction and of the practical characters of his mind, we relate the following anec- dote: After preaching, one day, with great fervency and power, as was his wont, and while his thoughts and his heart were full of the great themes of the sal- vation or eternal damnation of our race, a gentleman present introduced the subject of the eternal salvation of the brute creation, and by the pertinacity with which he sought to lead Bro. Dooley into a contro- versy on the subject, greatly annoyed him. He saw at a glance there could be no utility in such a contro- versy, and therefore in a very decided tone put an end to it after this fashion. Said he: " If you can convince that cat which lies before us that it will be made im- mortal, you may do it a signal service; but for myself I have no interest in the question whatever, and not the slightest disposition to agitate it." Thus should all such questions be treated. I also became acquainted with Moses and Thomas Dooley, one the father and the other the brother of Reuben. They were exhorters, qut not regular preachers, though they traveled considerably. Moses Dooley died a short time before his son Reuben. Thomas Dooley I remember as one of the sweetest singers of Israel I ever heard. He had a clear, soft, sweet and most melodious voice. I shall never forget, while memory lives, the deep impression his singing made upon me; there was so much of heaven and com- placency in his e) e and beaming forth from his coun- tenance. He threw his whole soul into his song. While I write of him, he stands before me in imagina- tion, as he did in reality some forty-two years ago, the 162 JOHN ROGERS. embodiment of Christian meekness, gentleness, pa- tience, hope and love. I seem to be looking upon that beautiful, peculiarly soft, placid, heavenly-beaming countenance, as it shone upon me while he sang-as only he could sing-that most beautiful lyric of Dr. Watts', entitled, "Happy Frailty." I remember the tune yet, and many of the words. The first verse runs thus: "How meanly dwells the immortal mind, How vile these bodies are! Why was a clod of earth designed To inclose a heavenly star Weak cottage where our souls reside, Earth but a tottering wvall! With fearful breaches gaping wide, The building bends to fall." The whole song is in Dr. Watts' best style, full of pathos, of the most soul-stirring thoughts. And al- though it is more than forty years since I heard it sung, yet sung then to the beautiful tune in the inim- itable style of Bro. Thomas Dooley, the impression seems as fresh and vivid as if it were yesterday. I was captivated, charmed, entranced. The Dooleys lived in Preble county, Ohio, not far from Eaton. I spent some little time in their neighborhood, exercising my gifts as opportunity offered. During this trip I also became acquainted with Elder Nathan Worley, who lived near Dayton. I spent some time with him and his very agreeable family. He was a man of superior native talents, and well read in the Scriptures. He, as well as Dooley, at an early period in this century, took his stand with Stone upon the Bible as the only rule of faith and manners. He was a real Boanerges- 163 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. a man of fine gifts as a speaker and excellent Chris- tian character. He died in 1847. He continued in connection with that portion of the Christian Church which did not go into the Union in 1832, when the friends of Stone and Campbell in Kentucky and else- where formed a Union which has never been severed, and I hope never will be, and which has accomplished an amount of good which cannot be computed. The importance of that Union has never been appreciated, and perhaps cannot be yet. It will be hereafter, when we who were the actors in it shall have passed away. It was and is such a Union as the world never wit- nessed before, nor since. It stands alone in the his- tory of the church. Nathan Worley treated me like a father, and I can never forget his kindness and that of his family. He took me by the hand and encour- aged me. I was naturally very timid and always lacked confidence in myself. Was very much given to despondency and to fear that I never could be a preacher capable of accomplishing anything. I there- fore needed encouragement, and found it in the pioneers of those times. On this trip, too, I formed the acquaintance of the good, the gentle, the amiable, excellent and sensible Elder Samuel Kyle, of Miami county, Ohio. I stayed in his neighborhood and made his house my home a short time. I shall never forget his kindness and en- couragements. He died in 1836. Though a good man, be never went into the Union of which I have spoken. I traveled considerably with Brethren Worley and Kyle, and would speak and pray as I was encouraged and found opportunity. In the meantime I formed the 164 JOHN ROGERS. acquaintance of a young brother, Watson Clarke, who was a few years older than I, and had been preaching a short time upon a sort of a circuit. I traveled with him some time, but I cannot say whether it was upon my first or second tour. I think it was upon my fall tour, as I think we went together to conference in Sep- tember, 1819. 5. As I kept no journal of my travels this year, I am liable to slight mistakes as to the chronological order of events. But this is of little importance. After spending some months in traveling on foot, some friends proposed helping me buy a horse. They raised some fifteen or sixteen dollars, and with fifty dollars I had still coming to me in Kentucky from my father's estate, I made an arrangement to buy a horse. But I had no saddle. I therefore resolved to return to Wilmington on foot and work for my former employer and get me a saddle and bridle. I cannot recollect definitely from what point I started, but I remember distinctly it took me at least two days to make the trip. I can never forget an incident on that trip. The first night brought me to Yellow Springs, the seat of what is now "Antioch College," of which Horace Mann was the first president. There was a tavern at the Springs at that time, but who kept it I have forgotten. I stayed all night at that tavern. This was in August, 1819. I was then in my nine- teenth year. I was used to praying before I went to bed, and young and bashful as I was I asked the privilege of reading the Bible and praying with the family. It was granted, and I read a chapter and prayed and retired to bed. Next morning I resumed 165 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. my journey to Wilmington. My old employer gave me work and I soon had a saddle and bridle and horse. An old brother near Lebanon gave me an old pair of saddle-bags that looked like they might have been in the Revolutionary War. I accepted them gratefully, and felt that I was now well equipped. 6. During the summer, or early in the fall of this year (1819), I attended a camp-meeting in the woods on a beautiful bottom on White Water, not far from Richmond, Wayne county, Ind. Richmond was then in the woods, having very few houses. The whole country round about was new and very heavily tim- bered. I can never forget that meeting. A consider- able number of preachers was present, among whom I distinctly remember George Shidler, and I think Nathan Worley. The meeting was continued for sev- eral days and nights. The people seemed very un- feeling and at times behaved very badly. No good mpression was visible until Monday, the last day of the meeting. The carelessness of the people, and es- pecially the young, took a deep hold upon my heart. On Monday morning, before the public services com- menced at the stand, I retired into the woods and poured out my soul in fervent prayer to God in behalf of his people and for the sinners assembling and assembled there. I returned to the stand, under the influence of deep concern for sinners. Some one preached, and the meeting was about to be dismissed. With feelings unutterable, I arose and spoke a short time with deep emotions and tearful eyes (for my heart was full to overflowing). The effect was wonderful. The preacher and the Christians generally were bathed 166 JOHN ROGERS. in tears, and sinners were cut to the heart. I was a beardless boy, not nineteen years old. Doubtless my youthful appearance and deep feeling combined with what I said to produce so great an effect. I came down from the stand, and in harmony with the custom of the times, invited mourners. I never witnessed such a scene. They crowded around me, bathed in tears, and fell upon their knees before God in the dust. I presume not less than fifty came forward and thus prostrated themselves in prayer. I shall never forget the exhortation Bro. Shidler gave me. He embraced me in his arms, exhorted me to be humble and faith- ful, and study the Word of God, and preach Christ and him crucified. Prayed that I might live long to do good to build up the cause of Christ in the earth. He was then in the prime of his manhood-a large and noble-looking man. He had been a preacher some ten years. He had a fine person, an excellent voice, and was a good, practical, pathetic and success- ful preacher-a man of unblemished character. He died in Preble county, where he had lived near a quar- ter of a century, at the age of fifty-two years, greatly lamented. An anecdote is told of Bro. Shidler, which ought to be preserved because of the excellent moral it teaches. He was a very modest man-had very humble concep- tions of his own abilities. His education was poor, and when in 1810 he was set apart to the work of the ministry he felt that he was very poorly furnished for so great an undertaking. He was, however, able to teaeh his neighbors, and was being very successful in building up the cause. Connected with the Christian 167 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. Church of that time was Elder William Kincade. He entered with great spirit and ability into the Reforma- tory movement in the beginning of this century with Stone and his compeers. He was a self-made man, of fine native talents, considerable learning, and mighty in the Scriptures-a living, walking concordance, and withal somewhat eccentric. About the time Bro. Shidler commenced preaching, Bro. Kincade preached in his neighborhood. Everybody went to hear the great man-Bro. Shidler among the rest. He had never heard such preaching. It seemed to him he knew the Bible by heart-he knew everything and he himself knew nothing. He went home, measuring himself by Kincade, and therefore overwhelmed with a sense of his ignorance and utter unfitness for the work of preaching. He said to himself, "If I could preach like Kincade, I might preach; but ignorant as I am I had better quit it." For near a week he was miserable, under the temptation to quit the ministry, because he could not preach like Kincade. He mourned, and wept, and prayed before the Lord, and at last was delivered from his trouble thus. Said he: "Every man can't be a great preacher-every man can't preach like Kincade-some preacher in the world must be the least of all the preachers, and if it pleases God that George Shidler should be the man, be it so. God helping me, therefore, I will try to occupy my one talent till the Master comes." From this time forward he was happy in doing what he could in the vineyard of the Lord. What became of the penitents we left weeping on the banks of White Waters The great mass of them, 1ff8 JOHN ROGERS. doubtless, are in their graves. How many have been saved of those who near forty-two years ago were then inquiring, " What must we do " How many of them yet live, and where are they, and what are they doing We ask these questions with interest, but no human being can answer them. Had we been able to say to those penitents who inquired, " What must we do " in the language of Peter, "Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remis- sion of sins," they might have been delivered forth- with. But our minds were blinded to the simple truth on that subject, and God requires of us according to what we have and not according to what we have not. It is to be feared, however, that in these days many shut their eyes to the truth. To do this is to take a terrible responsibility. To tamper with our convic- tions, our consciences, is the high road to strong and damning delusions. But thank God we are not the judges in such cases. The Lord God Omnipotent reigneth, and the Judge of all the earth will do right. 7. In the summer, or most likely in the fall of this year, not far from Richniond, Wayne county, Ind., I met plain John P. Durbin, I think upon his first cir- cuit, a mere boy like myself. I presume he was not much if any more than nineteen years old at that time . I attended his meeting and heard him preach. I don't know that I have heard him since. We were fellow craftsmen. Both of us served a time to the cabinet business in Bourbon county, Ky., he with William Scott, of Paris, and I with the Messrs. Batterton, in Millersburg. He was then as poorly educated, perhaps, as myself. We dined together, 12 169 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. and he showed me an English grammar he was carry- ing in his pocket and studying. He was a very aspir- ing youth. He spoke in raptures of the great lights of Methodism, especially of Dr. A. Clarke, and seemed to have him before his mind as a model. He spoke of the great number of languages, and the great amount of learning he had acquired by his own industry, and seemed resolved to imitate his example. The Meth- odists, seeing he had talents and was anxious to cul- tivate them, gave him facilities for acquiring learning, which he has very successfully improved. He is now a D. D., and stands up among the very first men in that denomination as a writer, an orator and a literary man. I have not seen him for more than thirty years. 8. In the meantime, the conference of the Christian Church for that part of Ohio came on in Warren county, in the neighborhood of Elder Isaac Death's. It was held in the close of September of that year. The strong men of the Connection were there. The follow- ing names I remember: Elders David Purviance' David Wallace, John Hardy, Richard Simonton, Samuel Kyle, Isaac Death, and many others whose names I do not remember. The meeting was held chiefly at a stand in the woods. A rude stand was made, some three or four feet high, with a puncheon or slab floor, some ten feet long and five or six feet wide, with a board in front on which to put a book, and behind which the preacher stood. It was covered with a thick layer of green brush. There were three or four rows of seats, with two or more aisles between them leading down towards the stand. For lights we had scaffolds erected all round the seats-some half 170 JOHN ROGERS. dozen of them. They were set up on forks, some five feet high and as many square, with a bottom of tim- ber thoroughly covered with dirt. Fires were then built in the middle of these scaffolds of dry wood, and thus a good light was afforded to the whole congrega- tion. The stand was furnished with candles. I highly enjoyed the meeting. It was a great pleasure to me to hear the other men, and leaders in the worship, sing and pray, and preach the Word, and also to sit at their feet in the private circle and hear them converse about the things of God-the interests of the cause in which we were engaged. On Sunday night Bro. Wat- son Clarke and I were appointed to deliver our trial speeches before the conference and the large audience present. Bro. Clarke was to be the preacher and I the exhorter. It was a great trial to me to speak upon any occasion, but doubly so, to speak before such an assembly of preachers, several of them men of age, ability and learning. Bro. Clarke preached without, as I thought, much embarrassment. I sat behind him trembling with fear. He closed, and with my heart fluttering with agitation I arose and commenced my exhortation. Very few present had ever heard me. I have no recollection of what I said, as I had nothing specially prepared. I was young, beardless, ignorant, but my heart was full of the great theme of redemp- tion. So it was, I had not spoken long till the whole camp was ablaze of feeling. -The first thing I knew David Purviance and David Wallace were dancing behind me in the stand, shouting at the top of their voices. And in a few minutes the entire area before the stand was filled with men and women dancing and 171 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. shouting. The result was I was silenced and gave place to the preachers and people to carry on the meeting as seemed good to them. I had not attempted to preach, but I received license at that conference to exercise my talents in " such way as God may direct." Does any say, "This was all very disgusting and there could have been no piety there" This is very hasty and ill-judged. The times and views of the people then were very different from what they are now. We have more light on some important practi- cal subjects than they had, but I doubt if we have as much piety or spirituality. If they were upon the ex- treme of enthusiasm, we are on the extreme of cold formality. Below you have a copy of my original license to exercise my talents as a preacher or ex- horter: "WARREN CO., OHIO, SEPT. 28, 1819. "The Conference of the Christian Church to all whom it may concern: This is to certify that our beloved brother, John Rogers, the bearer of this, has been legally encouraged to exercise his talents in publicly administering the Word in such way as God may direct. We therefore recommend him to all where God in his providence may cast his lot, and commend him to God and the Word of his grace. "Signed by order of the Conference by "SAMUEL KYLE, Clerk." 9. At this conference I made the acquaintance of Elder John Hardy, and went with him from the con- ference to a meeting to be held, embracing the first Lord's day of October, 1819, at Burlington, in Hamil- 172 JOHN ROGERS. ton county, Ohio. He was the regular preacher at that point, and as he died on the 25th of October, it is most likely this was the last meeting he ever attended. The meeting at Burlington was protracted for several days, and was a very interesting one. I was with him some ten or twelve days at the two meetings. I never saw him after we parted. I heard him preach several times at the conference and at the Burlington meeting. He was in the prime of his manhood, not quite forty years old. He was a man of very superior natural gifts, and, considering his opportunities, had made great improvement. He had a fine personal appear- ance, an excellent voice, a logical mind and smooth, engaging manners in and out of the pulpit. I was greatly pleased with him, and think he was one of the best and most promising preachers among us at that time. But he died a few weeks after we parted, of fever, greatly lamented and greatly missed by the church he served so faithfully and acceptably. From this meeting at Burlington, I think I went to Preble county. I may have gone with Bro. Hardy, as he lived and died near Eaton. I spent some time with Father David Purviance, who lived on White Water, in Preble county. I attended several meetings with him, and was greatly pleased and edified with his conversation. He purposed during the fall to visit Kentucky and see his old friends. I resolved to accompany him, and if possible spend the winter of 1819 and 1820 at the school Father Stone was teaching in Georgetown, Ky. 173 CHAPTER III. Tour to Kentucky in the Fall of 1819-Spent the Winter and Early Spring Going to School to B. W. Stone in Georgetown, Ky.-Was Ordained in April, 1820, at Minerva-Loeated in the Spring of 1820 near Carlisle, and Labored for near Two Years in this Region-Tour with B. W. Stone to the Southern Part of Kentucky -Sermon at Columbia-Became Acquainted with Elder John Mulkey. 1. About the first of November, or late in October, in company with Father D. Purviance, I started for Kentucky. He had quite a string of appointments, which he had sent before him, reaching into Kentucky, and stretching through a considerable period-a month or more. David Purviance at that time was the oldest of the early preachers of the incipient reformatory move- ment in which they were engaged, and next to Stone, among the most talented, influential and learned of the Connection. He was a man of sterling integrity, and though unassuming, he was fixed in his princi- ples and independent in their avowal, when duty re- quired it. lIe was a very active member of the Legis- lature of Kentucky, and very influential for some six years-from 1797 to 1803. About that time he devoted himself to preaching, and made that his chief business till his death in 1847, in his 81st year. From 1792 till 1807, he lived in Bourbon county, Ky., and from 1807 till he died, he lived in Preble county, Ohio. He was a good man, and true in all the relations of life. He never entered the Union of which we have spoken, 174 JOHN ROGERS. though he was always friendly with us. But to return to our narrative. 2. We took Cincinnati in our route. It was then a small place, containing not more than six or eight thousand inhabitants. Dr. J. L. Wilson then occupied what was called the two-horned church, and almost the entire square around it was open and unoccupied. I think we also held a meeting at Burlington, some twelve miles from Cincinnati, in the Carnahan neigh- borhood. We made some stay in Brown county, Ohio, at Liberty, a stone meeting-house on Eagle Creek. Here. we had a meeting of some days. Elder John Longly was then living in Decatur, some two miles off. He was then preaching for the congregation. He is still living in Lafayette, Ind., at a very advanced age, and still able to preach . He entered most heartily into " the Union," and has been true to it to this hour. His has been a thorny road through life. I have known him more than forty years and have no doubt he is a good man. He was never a financier, and therefore in early life sometimes involved himself and his friends in pecuniary difficulties. He is now poor. The Lord cheer the evenings of his days with the light of his countenance! He was originally a Baptist preacher, but very early in this century took his stand with Stone and his followers upon the Bible -and nothing but the Bible-as authoritative in re- ligion. He has been a good- and very successful preacher. An incident occurred at this meeting which I have never forgotten. A brother, I presume he was, gave me a piece of money; and then it was done in such a way ! He came blustering up to me to the pul 175 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. pit, and calling for a light pulled out his purse, and after some time handed me a cut ninepence, or quar- ter, I am not sure which. It was the first money I ever remember to have received for preaching. It greatly alarmed me, and the impression yet remains. I have never been seriously alarmed in that direction since and am not likely to be. I have, however, thank the Lord, no complaints to make, as I have got along very well. 3. From Liberty we went up the river, and after holding two or three meetings on the way, crossed the Ohio at Manchester and had a meeting at a Bro.. Geo. Wilson's, in what is now known as "Wilson's Bot- tom." We had meetings at Cabin Creek, Flemings- burg, Brick Union and at old Bro. Trimble's, in Flem- ing county, on Fleming Creek. From old Father Trim- ble's we made our way to Carlisle, my present resi- dence, and held a meeting in the old court-house Lord's day and Lord's day night. Carlisle was then a new place, only a few years old. This was in the fall of 1816, more than forty-two years ago. Here, in the old court-house which occupied the site of the new one, on Lord's day I preached my first sermon in Car- lisle, on these words: " They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." 4. From Carlisle I went to Georgetown, and was soon boarding at Andrew Robison's and going to school to Father Stone. Bro. Robison was kind enough to give me my board, and Bro. Stone gave me my tuition. Bro. Robison had a son James who had com- menced preaching. I spent the winter and early spring 176 JOHN ROGERS. 177 in studying the English grammar and other kindred studies. In the meantime, I attended all the meet- ings in reach and thus improved my talents as best I could. Here I became acquainted with several young preachers and exhorters near my own age, whom Bro. Stone had been instrumental in bringing into the Church, educating more or less, and disposing them to enter the evangelical field. Their names were James Robison, James Hicklin, Hamilton Gray, Harri- son Osborne and Marcus P. Wills. James Robison and Hicklin were the two oldest of the five. There was not more than two or three years' difference in our ages. Wills and I were perhaps the youngest. During the time of going to school, perhaps early in the spring of 1820, I accompanied Bro. Stone to a meeting on Cane Ridge. On that occasion I remember he preached at Judge Henderson's, who lived in the stone house not far from Cane Ridge, where Robert Bowler lived, subsequently, many years. There I think I made my first exhortation on Cane Ridge. I had a great desire to acquire a good education, but the harvest was great and the laborers were comparatively few. The Macedonian cry was heard from many quar- ters, and burning with zeal to be useful as a preacher, I was pushed into the field. 5. The conference of the Christian Churches for the North of Kentucky met at Minerva, Mason county, early in April, and held a meeting of some four or five days. The Baptists were kind enough to allow us to occupy their house. It was a very happy meeting. The congregations were very large and attentive. The preachers present, I remember, were B. W. Stone' RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. Archibald Alexander, Matthew Gardner, and I think John Morrow and his son William, besides several candidates for ordination and licensure. The five fol- lowing were ordained at that meeting, viz.: John Shawhan, James Robison, Hamilton Gray, Harrison Osborne and myself. Marcus P. Wills was licensed to preach. James Hicklin would have been ordained, but he was in very poor health. He died the subse- quent fall of consumption. He was a talented and most excellent young man. Hamilton Gray was a very well educated and gifted young man, but he died, I think of consumption, in a few years. John Shaw- han was near fifty when ordained. He lived in Bour- bon county, and died there some ten years ago or more at an advanced age. He was a good man, I think, but never an efficient preacher. Marcus P. Wills became a very useful preacher. He was a man of very respectable ability. He moved to Boone county, Mo., where he preached successfully many years, and died several years ago, much lamented. Three out of the five ordained at that meeting are living-Robison, Osborne and myself. Robison is in Illinois, not far from Bloomington, still preaching quite successfully. Bro. Osborne, some thirty years ago, moved to Mor- gan county, Illinois, and has been living there ever since. His family is raised and all married, and I think well provided for. He has got along in the world remarkably well, though never well sustained as a preacher. Indeed, none of the pioneers of this move- ment were well supported as preachers. Bro. Osborne's early opportunities for improvement were poor. But he was highly gifted as a speaker. He 7M JOHN ROGERS. had a superior voice, and a very pleasant, impressive and dignified manner, withal a remarkable memory, and was therefore a very popular and successful preacher. When young, the cares of his family in a new country where our people were few, in his earlier days there, prevented his devoting himself to the min- istry as he could have wished. Still, he preached a good deal and with some success. Of late years he has preached considerably and with good success. Some two or three years ago, his wife, a most excellent woman, died. I knew her at least forty-two years ago, when she was quite a girl at her father's, David Cas- tle's. 6. It is proposed to insert here a copy of my cer- tificate of ordination, written by the venerable Stone. The ceremony was performed in a very solemn manner by prayer and the laying on of the hands of the elders or presbyters. The following is an exact copy of the paper: "The elders of the Christian Church assembled at Minerva, April 10, 1820, have unanimously ordained our brother, John Rogers, to the ministry of the Gos- pel, according to the will of God, our Savior, by the commendation of the Christian Church at Georgetown, in which he has lived and labored for some time past. "Signed by the order of the Elders. "BARTON W. STONE, E. C.-C." The initials, E. C. C., mean Elder of the Church of Christ. 7. After the meeting at Minerva, I came into the neighborhood of Carlisle (which has been my resi- dence, mainly, ever since) and made my home for some 179 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. time at Father Moses Hall's, who then owned the farm on which James Arnold now lives, and occupied the same house in which said Arnold now lives , adjoining Carlisle. This was my headquarters for the remainder of the year 1820, perhaps some longer. I formed, by the advice of my seniors, a circuit, em- bracing parts of Bourbon, Nicholas and Bath counties -perhaps a part of Harrison. The points of my labor were many. The following were the principal: Car- lisle, Old Concord, Little Flat Creek, in the neighbor- hood of Ezekiel Hinton's. Big Flat, Prickley Ash, at Thomas Cartinel's, Elder John Morrow's, on Indian Creek, Leonard Woollen's, old Bro. Robert Snodgrass', on Beaver, Cane Ridge, Rockbridge and Plumlick. My field. of labor was large, and I labored incessantly in it day and night. We had but two or three meet- ing-houses then in all these bounds. In most places I preached in private houses, and at stands in the woods in warm weather, as no private house would hold the people. I greatly regret that I did not keep an account of my meetings and the results in the early times. But having no such records, I must depend upon my memory. I shall never forget my first visit to Little Flat, near Bro. Hinton's, a few miles from Moorefield. It was late in May, or perhaps early in June, 1820. We met in the woods on the creek, and I preached to a large audience. I think at that time we had no stand, but if we had not, we had soon after, as this was a regular preaching place for a good many years. I was in my twentieth year, a beardless boy, and though recently ordained had never before ad- ministered the ordinance of baptism. There were 180 JOHN ROGERS. eleven persons to immerse, and some of them quite large, and the water was rather shallow. I need not say it was quite a trial to one so young and inexperi- enced as I. But I felt it to be my duty and found little difficulty in its performance. Since that time I have baptized perhaps four or five thousand persons, many of whom have passed away and I hope are in paradise. 8. I spent the greater part of the present year  and the subsequent one at the places embracing my circuit as designated above. It was the custom of the church at Concord, before we had a meeting-house at Carlisle, to hold two big meetings, as we then called them, each year, embracing the third Lord's day of May and September, commencing on Friday and clos- ing about the following Monday or Tuesday. These were big meetings indeed. Many came from the differ- ent counties and neighborhoods around. on horses, and in wagons, and on foot. Many brought in their wagons provisions and cooking utensils, and even bed- ding, and slept in their covered wagons, or in the meeting-house. They did most of their cooking on the ground. At these meetings they met in the morn- ing for prayer and singing before breakfast. After breakfast, went to hear preaching at 10 and 11 A. M., then dispersed for dinner. After dinner, met at from 2 to 3 P. M., and heard another discourse, followed with singing and exhortation, and much fervent prayer. The congregation was then dismissed for supper. Many took their meals upon the ground, and many went with the near neighbors and took their meals with them, and returned to night meeting, when 181 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. they usually had preaching, exhortation and much singing and prayer. 9. That there were evils incident to these meetings must be admitted. When the sons of God anciently met together for divine worship, Satan was there in his emissaries to do his work. That there were disor- ders, and a good deal of wildfire enthusiasm, and even in some instances fanaticism, among the professors of these times, may be allowed; still, in very many there existed deep piety, the purest devotion to God and benevolence to man, illustrated in the most ani- mated and heart-searching appeals from the pulpit, the most fervent and earnest prayer for the salvation of sinners, and singing-the most feeling and soul- stirring-all backed by a life of purity and benefi- cence, presenting altogether quite a contrast with the coldness and elegant formalisms of these times. Those were seasons of refreshing from the presence of the Lord, and I highly enjoyed them. I loved in those days to sit at the feet of our good fathers and mothers in Israel, and hear them talk of the things of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus. 10. Allusion has been made to the death of James Hicklin, a promising young preacher. He was buried at Cane Ridge, and a rude head-stone at his grave says he died September, 1819. I know this to be wrong, as I was ordained in April, 1820, at Minerva, and he was present. I know, too, that at our big meeting for September, 1820, at Concord, the news came that James Hicklin was dead. While I live, and memory lives, I can never forget this. The stone, therefore, dates his death one year too soon. 182 JOHN ROGERS. 11. Late in the summer, or early in the fall of 1821, I accompanied B. W. Stone on a tour to the Southern part of Kentucky, embracing chiefly the counties of Adair, Barren, Monroe, and perhaps some others. I shall never forget Father Stone's sermon at Columbia, on that tour. It was preached in the court-house, and was most decidedly anti-Calvinistic. A Mr. Robin- son, a Presbyterian preacher, was there, and he and Father Stone dined together and had much friendly conversation. I think Robinson was located at Colhm- bia, and that he is the same who was a member of the Synod of Kentucky in 1803, from which Stone and his compeers withdrew. See Biography of Stone, p. 164. He read, as the basis of his discourse, the Parable of the Vineyard, as recorded in Isaiah, 5th chapter, first seven verses, but made the fourth verse his text. He showed that God in his dealings with his an- cient people, as set forth in this passage of Scripture, as elsewhere, had done all he could do to make them fruitful in all that would render them acceptable to him, and that, therefore, with perfect truth he could say, "What could have been done more to my vine- yard, that I have not done in it," to make it produce the proper fruit And so clear was the case in his favor and against the people that he submits the ques- tions to their own decision, assured of a favorable ver- dict. "And now, inhabitants of Jerusalem, and men of Judah, judge, I pray you, betwixt me and my vine- vard." As if he had said, "I challenge you to give one valid reason why you call evil good, and good evil; why you put darkness for light, and light for darkness; why you put bitter for sweet, and sweet for 183 RECOLLECTION8 OF MEN OF FAITH. bitter; why you are mighty to drink wine, and men of strength to mingle strong drink; why you justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him." Like the man in the gos- pel without the wedding garment, they were self-coni- demned, and therefore could make no defense. 12. He showed that what was true of the children of Israel is just as true of sinners under the gospel. That the.gospel feast is prepared-that all things on the part of God are ready and sinners are urged to come and partake of the provisions and live. That God has loved the world and has given the highest possible demonstration of it by giving up his own Son to die to save it. That the Son has tasted death for every one. That in all sincerity and truth the Spirit and the Bride say, Come ! Let him that heareth say, Come; let him that is athirst come, and whosoever will let him take the water of life freely. That the Savior most sincerely wept over the wicked of Jerusa- lem, though he knew many of them would perish for- ever; but he knew they would perish because they would not come to him that they might live. He knew that, in the day of judgment, they would be without excuse and have to acknowledge the justness of their condemnation. That the Judge could say in truth, " I called and you refused-I stretched out my hand all the day and no man regarded it." 13. After having thus shown most triumphantly that God has never under any dispensation given a sinner any excuse, much less a reason for sinning; that if under the Jewish or Christian dispensation men were wicked or lost, it was their own fault and they 184 JOHN ROGERS. would be dumb and self-condemned in the judgment of the great day, and God in their eyes would be just in their condemnation, he took up the Calvinistic theory, in which he had been thoroughly trained and which he well understood, and discoursed after this fashion: "But now," said he, "while it is perfectly clear, according to the Scripture, that sinners will see and acknowledge the justness of their own condemna- tion, it could not be so according to the Calvinistic theory. For, according to that theory, every one, iu the day of judgment, who shall be found on the left hand, will be found there because from eternity, with- out any foresigh t of unbelief or disobedience, as causes moving him thereto, God did, for the praise of his glorious justice, decree it should be so. Suppose, then, Jehovah should, in the last day, challenge the non-elect on the left hand, as he did ancient Israel, and say, ' What more could I have done to save you that I have not done "A they might justly have replied to this effect: "1. '0 Lord, be not offended at us, and we will speak in our defense: Thou askest, What more thou couldest have done 0 Lord, thou couldest have numbered us with the elect, as we were no more un- worthy than those thou didst elect.' " 2. ' Thou couldest have sent thy Son to die for us as a sin-offering.' 6 "3. 'Thou couldest have given us faith by the un- common operations of the Spirit. But withholding, in thy sovereignty, these favors, we perish without any fault of ours.' "4. 'Thou didst require us to believe the gospel 13 185 REXOOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. and obey it upon pain of eternal death, and yet, 0 Lord, thou knowest that from eternity thou didst de- cree we never should believe it. For, although thou didst send the gospel to us, and urge us to accept it, and gave us some common operations of the Spirit, we never could believe and truly come to Christ. Thou knowest, 0 Lord, it is no fault of ours that we are not of the elect-no fault of ours that Christ did not die for us, and of course no fault of ours that we could not believe in him, as the Spirit works faith only in the elect.' "Most certainly the Calvinistic theory is utterly without support in Scripture or reason. True, it is so modified in these days in many instances as to have lost its most repulsive features. When will the world be content with the simple statements of Scriptnre on all controverted questions Lord, hasten the day !" 14. In this town we had many pleasant meetings in the neighborhood of Bro. John Mulkey's. Bro. Mulkey (or I might call him Father Mulkey) I think was about the age of Bro. Stone. He had been a popular Bap- tist preacher, but became satisfied of the correctness of our ground and united with us, and was extensively useful in promoting the cause. He subsequently made a visit or two to this part of Kentucky, and was with me at Old Concord and Cane Ridge. He was quite an orator. He had a splendid voice, and sang, ,and preached, and prayed most admirably. He died many years before the venerable Stone. He left be- hind him some sons, who are still in the evangelical field and doing good service. One or more of them, I think, is in Illinois. 188 CHAPTER 1V. Was Married the First Day of January, 1822-Commenced House- keeping the Following March at Ruddell's Mills-In the Fall Pur- chased and Moved to the House and Lot, in the Village, that had been Owned by Joshua M. Irwin-In the Fall of 1823 Sold Out and Moved to Suburbs of Carlisle-In the Spring of 1824 Moved into Town andlWorked some at my Trade-Anecdote-In the Spring of 1825 Moved to Another House near by, once Occupied by An- drew Hughes. 1. On the first day of January, 1822, I and William Morrow were married to two sisters-I to Eleanor and he to Maria Hildreth, of Bourbon county, Ky. I to my first-he to his third wife. We were married by Eld. Harrison Osborne, now in Illinois. Eld. W. Mor- row is also at present  living in Illinois. My wife's father died a short time before I became ac- quainted with the family. She was the oldest child of a second marriage of her father. Jeffrey Hildreth left a widow and two rather large families. They were from Virginia, and located on a large and beau- tiful farm in Bourbon county, some six miles from Paris, and four from Cane Ridge. It was not long since occupied by Willis Goodman, who, I judge, still occupies the house, not much altered, in which I was married. - The family had been well off, but owing to law-suits regarding the title of the land they occupied, resulting in having to pay for it some two or three times, the family was much reduced as to property. 2. The first time I-ever saw Eleanor Hildreth was 187 BECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. at the funeral of her father in 1820. The funeral was preached at her mother's by B. W. Stone. I subse- quently made that house a preaching-place; also Esq. Parker's and his sons' Henry. Levi and William, all in the same neighborhood. During my preaching in this neighborhood, I baptized a number of persons, among whom was the widow Hildreth and her daughters, Eleanor and Maria. Thus was formed the nucleus of what afterward be- came the church, meeting at a house subsequently built called "Parker's Stand," from the name of a stand in the woods occupied in the good season of the year a long time before the house was erected. It was on the land owned by W. Parker. That house is still standing, but has not been much occupied for several years. It is not now needed, as Cane Ridge, Millersburg and Paris are not far off, and are on turnpikes, and every way easy of access, and as most of the old peo- ple of the church have died or moved away. 3. In the spring of 1822, I rented a house and lot of James Coons, near Ruddell's Mills, in Bourbon county, and about the first of March commenced housekeebing and went to work at my trade. Though very poor, I was very happy. I was married in a linsey jeans coat, and had a horse, a few clothes, and fifteen dollars in commonwealth money (worth seven dollars and a half) to commence the world with. My wife was about as well off as I. She had an old bureau, a bedstead, a good feather-bed, and bed- clothes, a cow, etc. My wife and I went to work with a will, and though when our friends came to see us we had to make pallets, we were soon able, after the fol- 188 JOHN ROGERS. lowing fashion, to treat them some better: We got another bedstead, another straw-bed, and divided our feather-bed and made two of it, and thus were enabled to put up two respectable beds. We now felt that we were getting up in the world-doing very well. At this time, and for some ten years after, I never re- ceived anything in the shape of a salary for preach- ing. I worked most of the week at my trade, and Sat- urdays and Lord's days devoted to preaching, princi- pally in the counties of Bourbon, Nicholas and Har- rison-at Mt. Carmel, Cane Ridge, Beaver Creek, Parker's Stand, Carlisle, Old Concord, etc. I preached more frequently and regularly at Carlisle and Concord than at any other points. In the fall of 1822, I pur- chased the property of Joshua M. Irvin, near the Mills, and moved to it, where I lived till the fall of 1823. 4. Late in the spring, or early in the summer of 1823 I employed a Mr. P-, of the vicinity, and a member of the P- C-, to do some hauling for me. He lacked a horse to make out his team, and I lent him mine, which proved to be a good leader. He was much pleased with him, and proposed to swap another horse for him, and give me the difference in money-30-which in commonweath's money (our chief currency then), was worth 15, in specie. I told him I was no judge of a horse, and that if I traded, I would depend entirely upon his honor as a Christian man to do me justice. He assured me the proposition he made was a generous one; that his horse, though poor and a little older than mine, was a sound and good horse, a good riding-horse, but not suitable for a leader; that mine being a good leader, he was 189 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. willing to give me a good bargain. Being poor, and needing a little money to enable me to lay in stock for my business, I allowed him to make the trade upon his own terms. Having been taught from, my childhood to despise dishonesty, and having recently embraced Christ as my Savior and Exemplar, and con- scious of a disposition to act honestly myself, I could not suspect a professed Christian man of an intention to cheat me. The trade was consummated. I re- ceived my thirty dollars in paper money, and the old horse. A few days proved him to be very old, in the judgment of good judges, and what was worse, almost rotten with the ganders! I went back to Mr. P- and offered him his horse and money, and urged him to let me have my horse again. I appealed to his benevolence and Christianity-his sense of jus- tice-contrasted my poverty to his comparative wealth -my implicit trust in his honesty, etc.; but he was unmovable. I went home and got the elder of the church of which he was a member to go with me. We found him in his corn-field, and expostulated with him, but he was inexorable. I then told him I would turn out his horse, and he might have them both; that if he could reconcile it to his conscience- to take from me, a poor man, my horse for 16, in good money, he might do it, and I would appeal to the final judgment for a settlement of our controversy. I left him and turned out the old horse, and have never heard from the horse since. Full forty years have elapsed since that day, and though I have seen that man a few times, I have never had any conversation with him I believe he is still  living in the same neighbor- 190 JOHN ROGERS. hood, but is in no good odor with his own people. I certainly feel pity and contempt for him, but cannot envy him or wish him any ill. 5. In the meantime, the church at Concord and Carlisle, having no regular settled preacher; urged me to come and settle among them. I accepted their invitation, and in the fall of 1823, sold out my little property at the Mills and moved to the vicinity of Carlisle, Ky., and spent the winter of 1823-24. in an upper room of the house now  occupied by our Sister Sims. The house and farm connected with it then belonged to the venerable and beloved Thomas Nesbit, who but recently died in Indiana, full of years and honors. He was indeed a most remarkable man. My family then consisted of a wife and one young child. Father and Mother Nesbit and the family took us into their home, and gave us the exclusive use of one of the upper rooms, and a place to keep my horse, till the following spring. I can never for- get the kindness of that family. Sister Nesbit was an excellent woman, a mother in Israel, an Israelite indeed. Thomas Nesbit was the leading spirit in the church at Concord and Carlisle. He was universally beloved and respected. Though uneducated in the popular sense of that word, he was possessed of remarkable natural endowments, and deeply read in the Holy Scriptures. He had fine judgment, a great share of common sense and deep piety, without moroseness; Christian dignity, with child-like sim- plicity; cheerfulness, without levity. Eternity only will reveal the obligations of this church to him under 191 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. God, during the long period of his connection with it. He also did a great deal in building up and sustain- ing the church at Richland, in Indiana. He was a man who, by the grace of God, had remarkable com- mand of his temper. During a long and very intimate acquaintance with him, I never saw him out of tem- per. He was the soul of the prayer-meetings, taking the lead, and interspersing the exercises with brief, spirited and sensible exhortations. He was often sent for to visit the sick, and to hold prayer-meetings in different neighborhoods, having the confidence of all who knew him. A characteristic anecdote -will close what I have to say, in passing, of this good man. In the early settlement of this country, some sixty years ago, there were light-fingered persons as well as now, who occasionally helped themselves, under the cover of the night, to articles belonging to their neighbors. One night, Father Nesbit came upon a neighbor, sud- denly, in his corn-crib, filling his bag with corn. He would gladly have escaped detection, but it was impossible. His neighbor was upon himn; he was known. He helped him fill his bag, and helped him with it on his horse, and then gave him a kind lecture and urged him to reform. Said he, " If you will do so no more, I will never expose you; and if you are at any time in need, come to me and I will divide with you." 6. But to return from this digression, which I have felt it my duty to make, to pay a slight tribute of respect to that most excellent man, Father Nesbit. In the spring of 1824, 1 rented the house in Carlisle from Sam'l Hall, now occupied by Dr. J. F. McMillan 192 JOHN ROGERS. as a stable, and moved into it, and lived there one year. My time during this year was occupied chiefly in Nicholas and the surrounding counties. I preached much in groves, in the good season of the year, and in private houses whenever there was an opening, and had considerable success, but as I kept no diary I can give few details. In the meantime, I occasion- ally worked at my trade, with my next-door neigh- bor, John Davidson, who then and for many years after, lived where Dr. J. F. McMillan now lives, and had his shop, j iist above his house. Thus I furnished myself with some articles of furniture, which I needed, and some means of living. I still have a bureau which I made at that time, and which I kept in my family. 7. An anecdote which occurred about this date, I wish to record, by way of showing the spirit of the times and the feeling entertained by many of the sects toward the venerable Stone and his coadjutors. When at work in the shop of my neighbor Davidson, one day, I was visited by a Presbyterian colporteur. I knew him well, and knew his bitterness against Stone. He proposed to sell me some of his books. I told him I could not buy any of his books, but I had some of the writings of Stone which I would exchange for some of his books. " Stone's writings," said he, with much earnestness and feeling; " they ought all to be collected in a pile and burned, with Stone in the middle of them! " 8. I1 the spring of 1825, I moved to another house, not far from the house I lived in. The house, when I first knew it, was occupied by Andrew S. Hughes, 193 194 RECOLLEOTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. who was then clerk of the Nicholas County Court. The same house was occupied for many years past by the blacks of the venerable John P. Parks, long the worthy Clerk of the Nicholas County Court, and it is now  almost in ruins. CHAPTER X. JOHN ROGERS. REFLECTIONS ON HIS LABORS, ETC. Elder John Rogers, of Carlisle, Ky., left with his family a sketch of his labors in the ministry, extend- ing from the time he was ordained to preach, April 10, 1820, to the year 1834, comprising a period of only fourteen years; and yet he had preached nearly fifty years! Why he failed to give his brethren a full account of his work in the ministry, I know not. His life should have been written years ago, but of the causes that hindered I know nothing whatever. In the providence of 'God I may, at some future time, prepare a more satisfactory account of his work as a preacher and a writer than is possible in this sketch. It will be observed in this autobiography that he began to preach, or at least to exercise his talents as a speaker, when occasion afforded, when quite young. .1 have heard him say that after having preached forty years, he rarely ever entered the pulpit without being more or less embarassed. This, however, could not be detected save by those most intimately acquainted with him. He was constitutionally timid, and re- mained so during life. Some persons, I presume, are so organized, that they cannot help looking on the " dark side " of all pictures 195 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. they may have the good or bad fortune to see. Others there are who invariably look on the "bright side." One man walks in the midst of sunshine, and his face ever beams with joyous smiles. Shadows hang over the path of another, and he is sad and burdened. This difference is often owing to the difference in men- tal or physical idiosyncracies, but not always. John Rogers was a mau of muleh gravity, much seriousness. It is true, he was usually very pleasant in the com- pany of his friends and brethren; still he was rarely humorous or lively. In the early part of his ministry, as he has himself narrated, he was poor, hard-pressed, and compelled to work at his trade to support his family. Then he had little or no time in order to prepare for the pulpit; still he preached every Sunday, often held meetings of days, not for the money he received, but because he loved his Master and desired to do good to his fellows. As a speaker he was clear and forcible, never attempt- ing to, play the orator, but to offer the plain truth in a plain manner, and usually he was master of the as- semby. In the prime of life, when most efficient as a writer and preacher in the Current Reformation, he prepared his discourses with much care, and possess- ing the confidence of the people, le was a power in the pulpit. His voice was strong, full of melody and under excellent control; besides, he was possessed of a commanding person, naturally easy and graceful, and hence he readily and deeply impressed his hear- ers. He said but few things he could have desired to unsay. With the leading objects of this reformatory movement he had been familiar from his youth up to 196 JOHN ROGERS. the day of his death. These matters he had exam- ined and pondered in tears and in prayer to God, and was perfectly satisfied with the soundness, the excel- lency of the "Plea." He was at no time in life dis- posed to engage in fruitless discussions or specula- tions; in fact, he looked upon such a course of con- duct as dangerous to the individual and opposed to the best interests of Christianity. He sought facts- truths -xamined principles, and to announce the sim- ple gospel in its beauty and its power was the leading purpose of his efforts in the pulpit. He never failed to furnish plenty of food for the spiritually hungry to feast upon; was ever able and willing to offer helpful suggestions to those sincerely seeking the truth, and was not unmindful of the needs of those passing through the deep and bitter waters of affliction. To show a characteristic in him, that never left him, we give the following: When eight or ten years of age, and while living with my father, he was the mill-boy, and a very good one. Seventy-five years ago, in what was then termed the "Far West," it was customary to shell the grist of corn of a night, preparatory to going to mill on horseback the next day. A large wagon-sheet was spread out on the dirt or slab-floor, right before the fire-place, and the corn placed on this was shelled by hand by the whole family-all, large and small, seated around the edges of the heap. All engaged in preparing the grist one night, my father observed that John was wiping his eyes, or occasionally rub- bing them, and inquired why he was so affected. He replied in broken accents, substantially: "1Well I 197 RECOLLEOTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. was thinking about having to go to mill to-morrow and that in going up that big hill (naming it), my sack will fall off, and the hogs will come and eat up the corn before I can get any one to come and help me in putting it back on my horse again." My father used to say to him, in ascending the hill of difficulty in after life, before reaching it, "John, the sack is fall- ing off-are you not climbing the hill before you get to it " But when he did reach the hill and grappled with the real obstacles in the way, no .one was more manly, more courageous! While not so hopeful or buoyant as some ministers, where cirumstances re- quired it he was boldly aggressive, even uncompro- mising. I need not say to those who knew him, that John Rogers loved a good song, was passionately fond of hearing others sing, as well as singing himself. Pos- sessing a splendid voice, he sang as but few could sing, at least in his palmy days. His own soul was full of rapture to overflowing, and those who listened to him were simply charmed. New songs he quickly learned and greatly enjoyed; but the songs that de- lighted him above all others were those that carried him back to the days of "long ago," and awoke in his heart memories of other days-days that brought vividly before his mind the dear brothers and sisters in Christ with whom he had labored in sweet accord, in the great congregation. If John Rogers was occasionally in the habit of an- ticipating evils, or magnifying dangers or difficulties in the distance; if to him, now and then, "coming events cast very dark shadows before," and around, 198 JOHN ROGERS. one thing is certain, that in singing in the house of God, one of the good, old, plaintive songs of Zion, and shaking hands with his brethren, he realized that he was on consecrated ground and standing very near the gate of heaven. At one time, in company with Alexander Campbell, the conversation turned on songs, hymns, hymn-books, etc., etc. Finally he spoke of an excellent song, one he admired very much, and proposed to Bro. Campbell and others to sing it, if it would not be considered out of order. Bro. Campbell remarked that he would be pleased to hear it, whereupon my uncle sang it, and no doubt admirably. All listened attentively. At the conelusion my uncle said to Bro. Campbell, " How do you like it" Rubbing his hands together, Bro- Campbell answered, "0 it is, Bro. Rogers, a very fine soliloquy, very fine indeed." My uncle was not at all pleased with the ingenuous reply, and was then and ever afterward of the opinion, that however good the judgment of Bro. Campbell on all other matters, he knew little or nothing of excellent songs, of tune, or of melody. He was bitter in opposing the use of to- bacco. Chewing and smoking should not be prac- ticed by Christians. Once he preached at the town of G- M. against " Common Sins or Vices"-sins venial, not mental in character. He spoke of money thrown away for tobacco-more than was usually paid for the support of the gospel. Not only so, the habit was filthy-sustained, it is true, by one and only one pas- sage of Scripture: "Let him that is filthy be filthy still." While enlarging upon the evils attending its use, he noticed that two or three brethren occupying 199 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. front seats were very restless. At last they could stand it no longer, but concluded to offer him a direct insult, by spurting their filth on the naked floor, and toward him. As they increased in spitting, he also increassd in the violence of his opposition. These men were never anxious to hear another philip- pic against common sins, nor was he very much in- clined to preach soon again in that part of the Lord's vineyard. He loved to preach, loved his brethren dearly, but was not peculiarly happy in casting pearls before swine. I never had the pleasure of an acquaintance with his first wife, but those who knew her best spoke of her many Christian virtues as wife, mother, friend. She died of consumption, that deceitful destroyer which flatters but to kill its victims. And all of her children save one, loving and intelligent as they were, have followed her to an untimely grave. Not long after his second marriage, I became ac- quainted with his wife, and knew her well. She was one of the purest, most self denying spirits on earth. Is it possible for the preacher to be a good man, or to accomplish in this world of trial a great or good work, when his wife is giddy or worldly-minded-is not in sympathy with her husband in his noble purposes Well, it must be a difficult task. The wife of John Rogers was helpful. In all of his trials in life-and they were not a few-his amiable, Christian wife shared these with him, ever holding up his hands when burdens were heaviest, or when the enemy pressed hardest upon him. 200 JOHN ROGERS. When young, full of health and strength, she assist- ed in all of his efforts to build up the cause of Christ, ever willing for him to go forth into th4 broad field, sow the good seed of the Kingdom, or gather into the fold of Christ. When health failed, and the wants of the family must be looked after; when it appeared to be almost impossible, frail as she was, to bestow that attention upon the children which was absolutely re- quired, in order to rear them for the skies, she never said to her husband, "You must remain at home and help me "-never. But, trusting Him who has prom- ised never to leave nor forsake, casting all her care on Him who careth for us, she was willing to do, if re- quired, even more than her part. Meek, quiet, yet brave-hearted Christian wife and mother! But few men in the Christian ministry have been so greatly blessed as John Rogers-with a wife who wept and rejoiced with her husband; who was his strength in weakness, his light in darkness, his joy in sorrow-ever cheering him on in his efforts to bless humanity. Having penned the above as a slight tribute of re- spect due the exalted character of one whose life had been so pure and self-denying, the following was sent me by a friend, to dispose of as I thought proper. It was written by one who knew her well-had tested her strong faith and many Christian virtues in hours of affliction and trial. Would be pleased to insert the article entire, but have space only for the following just paragraphs: "MILDRED ROGERS.-Although nearly a year has passed since this faithful child of God and patient suf 14 201 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. ferer went home to the mansions above, no reference has been made to her death, no obituary published by the paper read by herself and the hundreds led to accept Christ through the preaching of her husband, Elder John Rogers, of Carlisle, Ky. In the hope that some one more likely to write impartially, and more competent from long acquaintance to pay a just tribute to her character, would publish something, this pen. has heretofore re- mained silent. But, believing that a life so good and true ought not to pass away unnoticed, I send these words, which I hope may find a welcome reception by all who rejoice in the common salvation. Churches, planted and trained by Elder John Rogers, in tears and toil; young men, encouraged by him to enter the ministry; editors, watching the hosts of Zion marching on to victory-all these noted his face at his post of duty, and with one voice pronounced him blessed. Such a character merited the praise it re- ceived. It had been formed under many adverse cir- cumstances and brightened by the most thorough tests. "But there was a hidden, silent force to which it owed much of its power and symmetry. Sure and steady in its influence, this force wrought its part in the character of this servant of truth and -righteous ness; By it his heart was freed from domestic cares. By its serene faith every tempest and cloud was driven away. By its patient, toiling industry he was enabled to go far and near to tell, out of an overflow- ing heart, the love of Jesus. This meek, gentle force greeted him with a heavenly smile on his return home. It poured from a soul thoroughly in sympathy with 202 JOHN ROGERS. Christ-a constant flood of sunshine upon his path- way. It. clothed him with strength for life's unceas- ing warfare against sin. That force, as eternity will fully disclose, was the life of his meek and quiet, spirited wife-Mildred Rogers. She was an important factor in his abundant labors from Feb. 8, 1841, the date of her marriage, till his labors ended Jan. 4,1867. She lived in the firm conviction that his success was her success. . . . . She won and held to the last the love and respect, not only of her children, but of the community. A sincere piety and a blameless life is a sure guarantee to honorable respect among men and the approbation of God ..... . But an all-wise God, who ever acts for the best, preserved her to be a guide to o-qr pilgrim feet and a solace to our hearts till May 29, 1879. Then with a resignation as calm and strong as the life she had lived, by faith on the Son of God, she passed away, breathing the prayer of the martyr Stephen, ' Lord Jesus, receive my spirit!' "Bethania, N. C., May 21, 1880. J. B. J." In the year 1866, the month of October, John Rogers, with many of the pioneers, attended the Gen- eral Convention held in Cincinnati. During the Con- vention, I dined with Elders John Smith ("Raccoon"), John Rogers, Fitch Munger and his most excellent Christian wife, and others, whose names I do not re- member. John Smith and John Rogers had known each other long and intimately-had been co-workers in the ministry and loved each other as brothers in Christ. They talked with no little animation of other 203 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. days and other men, the "fallen heroes," such as A. Campbell, B. W. Stone, Walter Scott, the Creaths, etc. Some one of the company called for a song. Bro. Smith said, "If no one objects, I would be pleased to hear some brother or sister sing my song:" "There's a region above, Free from sin and temptation, And a mansion of love For each heir of salvation." A brother started the song and sang it through to the tune desired by Bro. Smith, and several good voices in the little group joined in and assisted greatly. Bros. Smith and Rogers, though feeble, arose and walked around the room, shaking hands with each person present. When the words were being sung- "There shall friends no more part, Nor shall farewells be spoken; There'll be balm for the heart That with anguish was broken "- these grand men of God, bowed through the weight of years, grasped hands and throwing their arms round each other, wept for joy. They have both passed over the cold waters, and now with the " loved ones " and the blessed Redeemer are happy. In the year 1868, at a district meeting in Chillicothe, Mo., I had the pleasure of seeing Bro. Smith and being with him several days. He preached once or twice and exhorted with much power. One evening he was so much roused up with the large and attentive audi- ence, and with the interest manifested on the part of sinners in their soul's salvation, that without any help he stepped up on the front seat and stood there, plead- 204 JOHN ROGERS. ing with the unconverted to obey Christ. This was the last time I ever saw our venerable brother or heard him preach. During the morning and afternoon sessions he sat on the platform near the chairman, speaking out occasionally, disapproving or appro- bating as the case might be. Bro. J. WV. Mountjoy and several other young preachers were in attendance. I heard him say to a youthful minister, " Thank God, when we old preachers are gone, there will be others ready to take our places. You may think, my young brother, that you have many reasons why you should be thankful to God, but for every one you have I have a thousand." He did not explain the meaning of his remark, and I asked no questions. He talked freely one evening of the pulpit efforts of various leading preachers in the Reformation-partic- ularly of the splendid discourses he had heard Lard and Hopson deliver. Moses E. Lard was a little too fond of speculation to suit him altogether, especially as to the power of the devil. He thought no one should call him " Old Nick," or " Old Harry," or any such ugly names. He conceived that the devil pos- sessed immense power over the elements of the ma- terial universe. Bro. Smith didn't know so well as to the truth of such views. Dr. Hopson was a matter-of-fact preacher; never en- tered the field of speculation or metaphysics, confin- ing himself to the clearly-revealed commands, facts, truths and principles relating to duty and destiny. As a gospel preacher and pulpit orator, Dr. Hopson was Bro. Smith's beau-ideal. After speaking for some time of John Rogers, I held 205 RECOLLECTIOITS OF MEN 01 FAITH. up before him his likeness. He looked at it a mo- ment, then taking it in his palsied hand he silently gazed at it, and then giving it back to me said: "I knew him well-labored with him in bringing about a union of the Reformers and those called Christians. He was one of the purest men I have ever known in this Reformation. I have never allowed any man to say aught against the character of John Rogers. He's gone to his reward-I will soon follow him." Toward the close of his life he lived much in the past, delighting to fight over the battles of other days, and mingle with the valiant ones with whom he had stood shoulder to shoulder in the forefront of battles. He mourned over the formality, the worldly-minded- ness, indifference and coldness found among many who professed to be the followers of the meek and lowly Son of God. Dancing, whisky-drinking, billiard-playing, card- playing for amusement, and things of a like charac- ter, were not merely deprecated by him, but de- nounced in unmeasured terms. Now and then he was overwhelmed with sadness at the outlook of the Reformation, and with Jeremiah, the saddened and burdened prophet, would exclaim: " 0 that my head were waters, and mine eyes a foun- tain of tears, that I might weep day and night over the slain of the daughter of my people I" Yes, John Rogers had his dark days-his days of heaviness and gloom, not only in the morning and noon of life, but as he realized that the days of his earthly pilgrimage must soon close and he pass into another world. Not that his faith was growing weak, 206 JOHN ROGERS. not that his confidence in the truth of our Holy Relig- ion was failing him; no, not that. For he was a man of unbounded faith in God the Father, and in the Lord Jesus Christ; believed with unwavering confidence in the final triumph of Christianity-that it would fill the whole earth as do the waters the channels of the great deep. But he felt at times (and who has not had the same feeling) that there was not that marked difference be- tween the church and the world that obtained when he first became a member of the church-first began to proclaim the gospel and to call sinners to repentance. Perhaps, as we have before said, this was owing to constitutional peculiarities; perhaps there was some truth in his conception that as the attractions of the world increased in number they also increased in pow- er to captivate and lead to ruin. John Rogers preached in Carlisle and in the sur- rounding country nearly half a century. Hence, as we say in common parlance, he "wore well" as a preacher. His life was consistent. What he preached he practiced. What he called on others to do, he did himself. He was not faultless, but his faults were few. Possibly I am not an impartial judge, for I loved him much. I have many reasons for esteeming him highly-for venerating his memory. When a poor boy, struggling against adverse fortune in order to obtain an education, John Rogers said to me: " Go on to school; I will help you." He kept his word-re- deemed his pledge to me. Often did he send me money, gathered from the various churches in the bounds of his labors, to defray my necessary ex- 207 208 RECOLLEOTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. penses. But that was not all. When ordained to preach, and without employment, he commended me to churches and then would come to see me and en- courage me in my life-work. Dear to me indeed is the memory of John Rogers. How pure the life he lived-how noble his Christian character! This page in the original text is blank. JOHN NEWTON MULKEY. CHAPTER XI. JOHN NE WTON MUL KE Y. ENTERING THE MINISTRY-POPULARITY-HISTORY OF FAMILY, ETC. His entering the ministry was rather peculiar, as might be said, form the force of circumstances, but was really providential. Returning from Tennessee, he found a few brethren within and around a small village called Martinsburg, situated on the Cumber- land River, and at the mouth of the creek on which he had settled. These persons had given themselves to the Lord, through the labors of his father, and now it was proposed that they give themselves to one an- other, that they might keep house for the Lord. It was something new and strange to the people of that day, and of that section, to see professing Christians meet on the Lord's day and attempt to worship God without the aid of a preacher. There was much prejudice against this unheard-of procedure in the minds of honest people, and this must, if possible, be removed. No one could be found better able to do this, either publicly or privately, than John Newton Mulkey. He searched the Script- ures daily to know the teachings of Christ and his apostles on this special point, and then attempted to show his brethren and the people at large, who were inquiring for the truth, that the disciples met together 209 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. on the first day of the week to break bread, and that this was the leading object before their minds in coming together, and not to hear preaching, as is gen- erally supposed, although preaching on such an occa- sion is certainly scriptural and calculated to accom- plish great good. He was greatly blessed in being a good singer, at least so regarded in that day. His voice was strong and full of melody, and he sang with the spirit and with the understanding. When only sixteen years of age, one year after his conversion, I heard-him sing a song beginning- "There is a school on earth begun, Supported by the Holy One; " and although only a small boy, being eleven years of age, I well remember how I gazed into the bright, happy face of the singer, in the enjoyment of sins for- given and the hope of heaven. I could not appreciate all then, but I trust the Lord will never allow me to forget that homely song, or the sweet cadences that then touched my young and tender heart. 0, what power there is in sacred song! Would that I could sing as I have heard my brother sing. But I trust I shall sing by and by, when I reach the better land, and join my brother in Christ the Lord. Bro. Mulkey sang, read the Scriptures and prayed on the occasions of which we speak. In attending to the Lord's Supper, he was the only one for years among the brethren who was competent to officiate at the table. For some weeks he would do little more in presiding than sing, return thanks, partake with his brethren, adjourn, and go home to meet on the next Lord's day. 210 JOHN NEWTON MULKEY. Not many meetings passed, however, until he began, unconsciously, to expound the Scriptures to the brethren, and urge upon them the necessity of Chris- tian duty and privilege. Being a good reader, a fine singer, and very earnest in prayer, as well as clear and forcible in his com- ments on the lessons selected for each first day of the week, it was not long until his brethren and the peo- ple generally in the neighborhood regarded him as one who promised to become successful in the min- istry. The brethren urged upon him to extend his com- ments, to enlarge his talks on the selected portions to be read, and although modest and diffident, he resolved if possible to comply with their request. Hence, during the week he would take the Bible and open to the lesson for the next first day and read and ponder as best he could until the time came for him to lead and to speak. His loving heart was full, and he was so enabled to explain the Scriptures that soon those outside of the church would come in to see and to hear for themselves. His faith, growing day by day, so in- creased that he became strong, not in self, but in the Lord and in the power of his might. Thus in a short time he was prepared to deliver set discourses on chosen themes. His fame could not be confined, but went abroad. He was now invited to preach in school- houses- and private dwellings. The pleasant shade of the trees in summer and fall was as good a house as he wanted. Calls came from all parts of Southern Kentucky-from friends of the truth-to pay them a. visit, hold meetings, organize churches and build up 211 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. the cause of the Master. Poor as he was, and work- ing with his own hands to support his family, he never failed to respond when- in his power to do So. He would often go a distance and hold a successful meeting and return home after an absence of two or three weeks and not bring money enough with which to buy his wife a calico dress. But like the majority of the pioneers of the Reformation, he loved to preach the gospel, for his soul was filled with the love of God, and he felt bound to do what he could to save the lost ones around him. He never thought much about the pay in money; all he cared for was to feed, and clothe, and educate his family, and then the great matter-was to lay up treasures in heaven, by doing good. The foregoing are some of the foot-prints of Bro. Mulkey in the path of life up to the years of 1827 and '28, but not all. Bro. Mulkey never engaged in doing anything worth doing that he did not work at with all his might. That trait in his character he came by hon- estly, for his father was a man of much energy, and labored hard in all his undertakings, especially in preaching what he believed to be the truth. The following incident will show how highly Bro. Mulkey was esteemed by his neighbors who differed from him religiously: Shortly after moving to Warren county, Ky., he was invited to visit a locality entirely new to him, all persons being strangers except one man, a Cumberland Presbyterian, who had once lived near him, and with whom he was well acquainted. He began preaching in a school-house, and soon some of the most respectable citizens, not belonging to any 212 JOHN NEWTON MULKEY. religious body, as well as many intelligent and en- thusiastic Methodists; also not a few honest and fair- minded Cumberland Presbyterians became. obedient to the faith. For miles around the interest spread among all classes, who crowded to hear the new preacher and the new gospel-at least new to them. But the excitement among the sects was not only in- tense, but very bitter. They were not able to answer the scriptural arguments they had heard, and conse- quently they resorted to abuse of character. They first whispered hard things about Bro. Mulkey, a cer- tain Mr. "They Say" figuring very largely in all that was said and done. Finally they spoke out with great boldness against his character. Col. A., an elder in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and once his neighber, could stand it no longer. It was now his time to talk, and rest assured he was heard from. He was none of your milk-and-cider men-what he did, he did boldly, and he was a man of standing and much influence. He forthwith went to his friends and brethren and said: "Gentlemen, you have just got to dry up that ugly talk about the character of Mr. Mul- key; you may say what you please about his doc- trine, for I have my objections to it as well as well as you, but as for Mr. Mulkey, I've known the man long and well; I've tried him as a neighbor and as a friend in time of need. He's an honest, upright man-a Christian gentleman. You can talk about his doctrine, but you shall not lay your hand on his char- acter!" That was enough; it stopped the mouths of the gain-sayers, for when Col. A. spoke, they knew 213 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. what he meant. It was not at all necessary for him to repeat the dose. In the year 1843, Bro. Mulkey held a meeting with Elder Sandy E. Jones, in the town of Thomkinsville, within a few miles of where he was born, reared, and became a member of the church. Bro. Jones did most of the preaching, Bro. Mulkey the exhorting and the baptizing. This was a glorious meeting, resulting in 132 by confession and baptism. And this is only one of many meetings of large ingatherings that might be named, held by our dear and self-sacrificing brother in the Lord. I remember an incident that greatly en- deared him to the religious denominations. It occurred in the early part of his ministry, and should have been inserted prior to this, in these hasty and imper- fect jottings. The Mormons, being routed from Independence, Mo., came to Hancock county, Ill., and commenced build- ing their great Temple in Nauvoo. They resolved to proselyte to the utmost of their ability, and they sent out their missionaries into all parts of the country (and they didn't send fools-not by any means). Two of these came into the same county-but not into the immediate neighborhood-in which Bro. Mulkey lived. They began their cunning operations among the Meth- odists and Baptists, and a few scattering Cumibefland Presbyterians. They got along finely until they walked out on their platform, claiming to have the power to work miracles, as did Christ and the apos- tles. Their plans were ingeniously made out and all their shrewd and plausible arguments were cut and dried, and an answer was easy prepared for every ob- 214 JOHN NEWTON MULKEY. jection that could be offered to their positions. They read from the last chapter of Mark's Gospel, from Ephesians, 4th chapter, 1 Corinthians, 12th chapter, and so ingeniously argued that it seemed almost im- possible to believe any other way than as they said. The sects, although unable to answer them or con- found them, would not accept their doctrine. They called upon them to perform a miracle and then they would believe. The Mormons would readily excuse themselves by saying they were away from the body of faith-among unbelievers. This was not altogether satisfactory to the sects, notwithstanding they did not know just how to off-set it. It is said " the last straw breaks the camel's back," and the Mormons made a last argument that silenced the sects, and rendered them triumphant in the eyes of those belonging to no denomination. They said to the sects, " Do you not believe in an influence of the Holy Spirit, separate and apart, above and independent of the Word of God Do you not believe that there is a mystery that can- not be explained by the finite mind, in this influence of the Holy Spirit Now the reason youcannot work miracles is because you have no faith; if you had faith as a grain of mustard-seed, you could remove mountains-in truth you could do all things." Here the sects bowed their heads in silence; they could go no further-they were stranded-they gave up in despair. However, there was still left a glimmer of hope. Some one had heard of a preacher in the county by the name of Mulkey, who was well posted in regard to the doc- trine of Mormonism, was a good speaker. and withal bold enough to attack the lion in his den. Send for 215 RECOLLECTION1S OF MEN OF FAITH. him; possibly he can rid us of these pestilent fellows and give us a little rest. So a messenger was imme- diately dispatched for Bro. Mulkey. He gave up his work at home, and went to the scene of action. He arrived at dusk-just in time to walk into the place of speaking as one of the missionaries began his dis- course. He listened attentively and with great patience. His plans were all well prepared, and he knew as well as anyone exactly how to assail the enemy. The speaker had claimed the power to work miracles, had urged these claims vehemently, and defied the world to show to the contrary. At the con- clusion of the services, Bro. Mulkey rose up and calmly asked for a confirmation of the claims set forth. The same old plea was set up-"among unbelievers-away from the body of faith." " No, sir," said Bro. Mulkey, "that will not answer; your plea is not good or suffi- cient; the ambassadors of Christ were able to do and did do just what was promised. Either work a mira- cle, or never again claim to be able to do so." The Mormons argued that the Savior on a certain occasion could not perform many mighty miracles because of unbelief. Bro. Mulkey replied that that was not to the point; that had the Savior performed no miracles at all it would not excuse them. "God at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets," and be it understood he confirmed all his communications. Your claim that God is now speaking from on high, through Joe Smith, to this generation. Now, I demand that you confirm what you say. You profess to be his ambas- sadors. The Mormons replied, "You would not be- 216 JOHN NEWTON MULKEY. lieve should we do so." Bro. Mulkey said with em- phasis, " That's not the point under discussion, whether we would believe or not. You are here offer- ing a new revelation to the people. As Joe Smith's ambassadors, confirm your message by the manifesta- tion of miraculous power, or abandon your claim. I withstand you; you shall not turn this people away from the faith. If you are competent ambassadors, bring the hand of the Lord upon me, as Paul did upon Elymas the sorcerer, who withstood him while he was endeavoring to convert the deputy. Strike me blind if you can, or acknowledge that you are deceivers-im- postors !" This was too much for them; they could say no more-they were silent. Bro. Mulkey now turned upon them with more severity than ever, and re- marked: "Gentlemen, we have no other words for you; besides, we have no further use for you in this part of the country; the sooner you leave, the better. One word, now in closing, to my fellow-countrymen." He then proceeded to show up Joe Smith and the apostate, Sidney Rigdon. How they had combined to so mar the manuscript of Solomon Spaulding by addi- tions, subtractions and alterations that it could not be recognized. These men had agreed to offer to the world the most outlandish and corrupt delusion, or religion, or whatever you may please to call it, known in this, the nineteenth century. This was one of the grandest efforts of Bro. Mulkey's life-at least so con- sidered by all who heard him. Had he called for it, these professing Mormon ambassadors could easily have been placed on rails, and with tar and feathers 15 217 RECOLLECTIONS 0F MEN OF FAITH. adorned, allowed to ride out of the country. As it was, they saw proper to leave the next morning at dawn of day. The people were at rest, and John Newton Mulkey was ever afterward considered, not only the grandest man, but one of the best in that section of the country. Reader, allow me to offer you a picture, after my own fashion. It is not in the least overdrawn: A. week of hard labor in the field has passed away, as have many. He is weary and wayworn, as well as his horse, Dave, for he has only one now. Like his master, he is tired from overmuch work. Breakfast is over, Dave is fed, and bridled and saddled. Bright and early Bro. Mulkey mounts his faithful horse (for he can now do no better), rides eighteen or twenty miles, and reaches the place of preaching. He walks upon the platform, and looks over a large congrega- tion, seated on logs, slabs and chairs, assembled to hear him preach the Word. He takes from his pocket a hymn-book, and, announcing the song, sings - with- out lining. The singing is good-and very good. It has thrilled the entire audience. The young, the aged, the middle-aged, have been as still as death. Here and there may be seen a father, or mother, it may be, sobbing, as familiar words have fallen upon their ear- words once sung by "loved ones," whose voices are now hushed forever in the dark valley, where they sleep in peace beneath the shadows of death. The prayer is offered-a prayer full of tenderness and love. How near the petitioner has approached the presence-chamber of the Lord of hosts! The text is read, and the sermon has been delivered. Ithas been 218 JOHN NEWTON MULKEY. a very long one-two hours, or two and a half. You imagine the people are weary. Well, as often as the time comes for meeting in that same neighborhood, the same immense assembly may be seen on the same ground ready to hear the same preacher. Some have come ten or fifteen miles, and having made the good confession must be baptized without delay. This being attended to, the meeting for the day is closed. By this time the preacher is greatly exhausted; still, he must make haste and start for home; for on the following day he must follow the plow in the field, to feed those whom God had given him. Dinner is dispatched with some friend or brother, and be it remembered the faithful horse has not been forgotten. He mounts his horse and turns his face homeward, treading the blind paths through the forest, over the hills, or along the winding vales of his native Ken- tucky. Not a hill, not a valley, not a cabin that he has not passed before, in this region. Touching mem- ories come up before him, as his tearful eyes fall on places in the broad primeval forests where in other days he sang, preached, prayed and worshiped with those now gone to their reward. The day is closing. The setting sun is touching with gold the hill-tops, as twilight is fast coming on. How glorious earth and sky, how wondrous the works of God, whom he serves joyfully without a murmur! He passes the home of the rich man without envy-without scorn. Wealth in abundance everywhere, and he poor and penniless, and likely to be so all of his days. Will he turn aside to gain riches, honor or power Not he. No such thought has entered his heart. All the burdens, all 219 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. the toils by the way, with whatever may afflict, he knows full well will " work out for him in the end a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory." Through clouds and darkness, through labors more abundant, he is constantly looking, not at the " things seen, but at those unseen," for he knows that the " things seen are temporal," and must soon pass away, while those "not seen are eternal." On he moves homeward, fixed in his purpose to serve God to the end of his days. Darkness has now settled down upon the world, and the bright stars look down upon him as he continues his journey. No human being is with him, and yet he is not alone-God is watching the movements of his faithful servant. Angels are keeping guard along his lonely path, while the hope of heaven is burning as a lamp within his soul. What has prompted this day's labor, as well as the labors of all the days of his eventful life Not money, surely, for he got but little of that commodity; not the praise of men, for the disciples with whom he was identified were at that time defamed and persecuted. Nothing but love to God-love to the blessed Savior who died for him-love to precious souls, perishing in their sins, moved him thus to labor and suffer hardships as a good soldier of the Lord Jesus Christ. John Newton Mulkey's manner of preaching was of its own kind-unlike that of any other man's. Those who were vain enough to try to imitate him, either in manner or in matter, were lost. He was left-handed, held his little Testament in his right hand, and ges- ticulated, or, may I be permitted to say, talked with his left hand. I do not say that a stranger could un- 220 JOHN NEWTON MULKEY. derstand what he meant to say by the movements of his hand, but being well acquainted with him, I have often been able to anticipate him; that is, I could tell what he would say next by the motion of his hand. He was, of course, not a man of learning-had no col- legiate education-only versed in the common English branches. Yet his language was chaste, his reason- ing clear and convincing, his sentences well con- nected and quite complete. It could be said of him truthfully that he reasoned very closely, and all of his illustrations were usually apt and strong, throwing light on the subject under consideration. The following incident will speak for itself-show- ing the superior power, at certain times and places, of the preacher of plain and simple speech, whose soul is filled with the love of God, over the highly-educated, who is often unconsciously held back by unnecessary rules and checks. Nor did Bro. Mulkey at the time, nor afterwards, know anything about the matter of which we speak. While living in Warren county, he paid a visit to Elder - Smith, then residing near Bear Wallow, Hart county, Ky. He brought with him a Dr. Smith, who had once been a Cumberland Presbyterian preacher, but was now a Christian preacher, having been converted through Bro. Mulkey's preaching. He was a man of fine ability and fine education. He was well acquainted with all the unscriptural methods used by his former brethren in their endeavor to con- vert people. He had fully tested the mourner's bench -had weighed it in the balance and found it wanting, and of course did not spare it in his preaching. Nor 221 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. did Bro. Mulkey fail in his preaching and exhorta- tions to offer his objections to this same bench. The Doctor had married a most excellent Christian woman, and she was justly proud of him. But she readily ob- served that the people had centered their affections on Bro. Mulkey, and not on the Doctor, and expressed to Sister Dr. T her regrets that while Bro. Mulkey had said as much against the mourner's bench in his public efforts as had her husband, Dr. Smith, he had won the affections of the people, while the Doctor had failed to do so. "Ah! Sister T , I understand it now; it's Bro. Mulkey's heavenly tone that has sugared the bench." It was not Bro. Mulkey's reason- ing-not his fine language-not his distinct articula- tion alone that did the work in winning souls to Christ. It was largely his manner, his beaming "coun- tenance, his tone of voice, the melody of that voice- his words falling pleasantly and sweetly upon the ear. Then his heart was in all he said, and the hearers felt the truth and realized the power of this fact. In those early days there were no baptismal suits, and often our brother was compelled to pull off his coat and shoes and thus go down into the water in order to baptize. Coming up out of the water, he would sit down on a rock, log or stump, and pulling off his wet socks would wring them out and put them on again; then adjusting shoes and coat as best he could, would mount his horse and ride home, happy as a king in the service of his Master. These things may sound strange to the ears of the refined of our own times, but at that time it was net considered at all out of place, or impolite. I compare not then and now; but if in 222 JOHN NEWTON MULKEY. that day there was not the intelligence and taste of the present, there could at least be found plenty of honest-hearted, self-denying Christian men and women. The foregoing is largely from the pen of Elder Ed H. Smith, himself a pioneer preacher in our ranks, and who has served his Master long and faithfully. He is now closing up the last chapter of a laborious life. The Lord be with him in his declining years. The following is from the facile pen of Elder Isaac T. Reneau, giving an account of Bro. Mulkey's ancestry; also a brief notice of the life, labors and last hours of this man of God. There is a slight difference between Bros. Smith and Reneau as to dates; but this is not a matter -of much importance. The statements of both are inserted without note or comment. There has been a direct line of preachers in the Mulkey family for about one hundred and fifty years. Philip Mulkey, the great-grandfather of John N. Mul- key, was a Baptist preacher in the Meherain Associa- tion in 1756, one hundred and twenty-six years ago (Temple's Hist. Vir. Baptists, page 222). But, according to others, he had beeh a "respect- able and successful preacher for many years." If it required twenty-four years of mental and physical labor to elevate him to "reputable" eminence, we have the one hundred and fifty. For his son, grandson and great-grandson continued the line till the death of the great-grandson in 1882. Philip Mulkey's son Jonathan was born, probably in South Carolina, and perhaps commenced preach- ing in that State. But about the year 1780 he,, Wm. 223 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. Reneau and other ministers and brethren, some from Carolina, and some from Virginia, emigrated to East Tennessee and organized a Baptist Church on Boone's Creek. The church is now called "Buffalo Ridge" (Benedict's Hist. Baptists, page 791). Jonathan Mulkey was one of the most pious and in- fluential preachers in Tennessee, and made a better mold of character in the Baptist churches than any other man in the State. And he lived to enjoy in his old age the privilege of being associated with his father and his own son John in preaching in the same pulpit and on the same day. Jonathan Mulkey's son John was born in South Carolina, Jan. 14, 1773, and commenced preaching in East Tennessee in the twentieth year of his age, and in a few years became one of the finest pulpit orators in the State. But near the beginning of the present century he and his brother Philip emigrated to Ken- tucky, and settled on Mill Creek, two miles south- east of Tomkinsville, and they soon obtained " a good degree and great boldness in the faith." But in the year 1809, the following incident oc- curred: While John Mulkey was preaching on the 10th chapter of John, in William Sim's house, on the Cumberland River, and making one of his strongest efforts to establish Calvinism, his own argument con- vinced himself that the doctrine was false. This roused up the powers of his great mind, and, caused him to " express a change in his sentiments on uncon- ditional election and some other subjects." This caused great confusion in the Mill Creek Church, and also through the Stockton's Valley Association. They 224 JOHN NEWTON MULKEY. immediately charged him with "heresy," and cited him to appear at the August meeting for 1809, to an- swer the charge. But not finding him guilty at the August meeting, they agreed to call on five other churches for "help" in the next trial at the October meeting, as requested, and after investigating the charge, the proposition was made for "all that justify Bro. Mulkey to raise their right hands." But as the majority were in his favor, no more could be done then than to continue the suit till the second Saturday in November. In the November trial, John Mulkey pro- posed to '-drop all disputes and bear with one an- other," but they replied, "Never, till you come back to the very ground from which you started." He then proposed a dissolution of the church, to which all agreed; and as many as wished to continue on their old platform, enrolled their names as "The Church." But John Mulkey, and all that went with him in the division, met together on the third Saturday in Novem- ber, 1809, and after prayer organized a church on "the Bible alone"-the Bible without human creed, confession of faith, or book of discipline. After the start of the Restoration, John and Philip Mulkey sowed the good seed broadcast over all the land, and though the beginning was small, they soon prepared a great host for the consummate restoration of the first form, order, work and life of the church which was built on the "Rock." And though it was small at the beginning, it is now very large-" it has begirt the earth around." John Mulkey's son, John Newton Mulkey, was born Feb. 11, 1806, two miles southeast of Tomkinsville, 225 RECOLLEOTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. Ky., and was immersed into Christ in early life by Samuel Dewhitt. He was married to Nancy Laugh in Kentucky, Oct. 7,1824, and began to preach in East Tennessee about the year 1831. His first effort west of the Cumberland Mountains was a short discourse on "The Weekly Meeting of the Church to Break Bread." It was delivered in the summer of 1832, in the Liberty meeting-house, two miles west of the mouth of the Wolf River, Clay county, Tenn. Bro. Mulkey returned from Tennessee in 1833 or '34, and again settled in Monroe county, Ky., but did not preach much for the first four or five years, But for the next forty years he gave himself almost wholly to the work. He studied and preached as much as his mental and physical man could bear, and though his health began to decline, he still continued to labor, as he could bear it, till near his death at his resi- dence in Glasgow, Sept. 26,1882. In the year 1850, some of the churches of Ken- tucky south of Green River sent delegates to Glas- gow to form a "co-operation" of churches, in order to "call and send" a suitable evangelist to preach the gospel within their bounds. After organizing, the next business was to inquire - Whom shall we send and who will go for us " And as all eyes were fixed on Bro. Mulkey, and all said, "Newton Mulkey is the man," he was unanimously " called and sent." And in obedience to the will of the co-operation, as he ex- pressed annually, he continued to preach five or six years with great success and profit. This eminent servant of the churches must have de- livered,-in the fifty-three years of his entire ministry, 226 JOHN NEWTON MULKEY. nearly ten thousand discourses, and immersed as many believers. At one meeting in Celina, Clay county, Tenn., in the summer of 1855, he immersed one hundred and five persons in jive days. After having resigned his work to the Warren County Co- operation, and also to the Kentucky Christian Mis- sionary Board, Bro. Mulkey emigrated to Perry county, Ilh4 and after the death of his beloved wife returned to Kentucky and settled in Glasgow, making that his home for some eighteen months. He then married Nancy Evans, a Christian lady of that city. This lady proved herself eminently worthy to be the life-companion of the great and good Newton Mulkey; but they could enjoy the comforts of each other's society but for a very few short years, for he had long sung- "On Jordan's stormy banks I stand, And cast a wistful eye To Canaan's fair and happy land, Where my possessions lie." And as the disease advanced upon his vitals, and eternity's ocean heaved into view, with his faithful eye turned to Christ, he gave his last farewell to time and friends, and calmly sunk into the arms of Jesus, on Tuesday, at 7 :25 P. M., Sept. 26, 1882, aged 76 years, seven months and fifteen days. That the be- reaved family may long remember his noble person, his valuable instruction and his pious example, is the prayer of their brother in Christ, and his true yoke- fellow in the gospel of Christ for forty-four years. ISAAC T. RENEAU. The following was received from Bro. Mulkey's 227 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. daughter in Illinois, and read to him while he was dying, but still conscious and able to understand: DEAR FATHER:-It is with a sad heart I write these lines to you at this time. I could write to others of the famikly all I would write to you, but as I am de- prived of sitting by you and talking with you of the sufferings and conflicts of this life, and of the bright hope beyond, I wish to write to you. I have many things I would like to say to you. The first and most important of all is, that I thank you from the bottom of my heart for the manner in which I was brought up; for the Christian influence which you exerted over me in my earliest days, and for your encouraging me to fidelity. How often have I thanked God that I was blessed with such a father and mother! Who could tell what I might have been had I not been so blessed It encourages me to exert a Christian influence over my own children. They may see the folly of their way and turn to God, who will abundantly pardon. You cannot know how much I wish to be with you, and especially now, that I might help wait on you, and in some measure return the kindness which you have so often bestowed on me. But alas! many miles stretch between my willing hands and your suffering frame. I know you will be well cared for; you have those around you that will not forsake you, that cannot forget you; and there- fore I will try to submit to my lot in this distress and in all others. We have much in this life that is hard to bear, but it is short--it will soon be over- and then, if faithful, we shall enter into that blissful eternity where the weary are at rest. 228 JOHN NEWTON M!ULKEY. Do not suffer any uneasiness about me, dear papa, for I am fixed in my purpose. I will not let anything prevent my devotion. I will, by the grace of God, stand firm as a rock to the last. I will "run with patience the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the author 'and finisher of the faith." I cannot preach, but I can talk to those around me, and en- courage them to fidelity, and in my humble way I will do all I can to bring souls to Christ. Now, dear papa, I shall have to say farewell! and if it is for the last time in this life, I feel sure that we shall meet again, and as the poet says- "Just so our pleasant friendship leaves A fragrant memory; And among life's garnered sheaves For long eternity, May not we at last discover, 'Tis for us a joy forever " Your loving daughter, LYDIA LISENBY. 229 CHAPTER X11. JACOB CREA TH. It is not possible for the ministry of the present gen- eration to know the conflicts and sufferings of those brave ministers of the gospel who broke league with orthodoxy sixty years ago and pleaded for the restor- ation of the "ancient order of things" in faith and manners. To be deserted by friends and brethren, misrepre- sented and maligned, locked out of meeting-houses and compelled like John the Baptist to flee to the wil- derness, often not allowed the privilege of speaking in the log-cabin school-house-this and more of a kin- dred character tried to the utmost the nerve and in- tegrity of the pioneer preachers of this Reformation. A few godly men in the ministry at that time, who forsook all and cast their lot with the early Reformers, were so fearful of not being able to feed their families on the mere pittance which they must receive for ser- vices rendered, turned back, not altogether, be it un- derstood, for the loaves and fishes, but because they were not just then prepared to become martyrs, or see their children starving or begging bread from door to door. At certain times and in certain places men of extraordinary ability in the pulpit were pretty well paid for labors more abundant; but not unfrequently, having preached for weeks, baptizing scores of peo- ple, organizing churches, setting things in order, these 230 JACOB CREATH. same men were compelled to go home with a sad heart, knowing full well that their little ones needed bread and clothing, which money alone could secure, and which they had not. In that day, Christian peo- ple in this Western country had but little ready money-were by no means educated in giving for the support of the gospel. Nor ought they to be greatly blamed. They knew no better than to give little or nothing, for the preachers were constantly crying out against the "hireling system" and "the hireling clergy," held up to the scorn of all the righteous of earth, by the leaders of religious thought. Hence they could not instruct their brethren, because of having tied their own hands and stopped their own mouths. These are faint echoes of this same foolish cry heard in certain quarters to-day. I am glad to know, however, that they are faint. Here was a great blunder-a grievous mistake-but not in every instance a mental sin. This error once perceived, was corrected, so far as it was possible. But sixty years find the Disciples of Christ not giving as the Lord has prospered them, and as a mat- ter of fact it must be confessed, some wealthy churches are actually dying in consequence of covetousness, which is idolatry, and of the very worst sort. John Wesley's plan of disposing of the Lord's money was good. He says, in substance: "I make all I can, and save all I can, that I may give all I can." This is scriptural; this is the way for the disciples of Christ and churches of Christ to live and help others to live. Do not the Scriptures clearly teach that Christians are but stewards under Christ Jesus, to re- 231 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. ceive and to disburse, in order to extend and build up his glorious kingdom on earth In all reformations which have proved a blessing to the world, those who have, as pioneers, stood in the forefront of battle, have been called upon, through the law of necessity, to endure greater sufferings than even-handed justice demanded. Our blessed Savior suffered, as no being born of woman ever suffered, in order to open the way through the grave to immor- tality and life eternal. There was no remedy-it must be so-he must drink the bitter cup to the very dregs -must pour out his precious blood, that man's sins might be washed away and redemption secured to all. And the apostles-how they also endured hardships in preaching the glad tidings and in planting the churches throughout the Roman Empire! What wondrous victories they achieved for King Jesus, under the banner of the cross, and all through great tribulation! The first Christians, in the face of persecutions, trials, even death itself, embraced Chris- tianity, looking for their reward, not here, but in the better world! When Constantine the Great ascended the throne, becoming identified with the church, mark the change in the beginning of the fourth century! He pro- claimed by an imperial edict that the religion of Christ should henceforth be the religion, par excellence, of the Roman Empire. Christianity at once became popular, and the distinction which had thus far been maintained between the church and the world being now obliterated, persecution as a matter of course ceased. The Spirit of Christ was no longer to be seen 232 JACOB CREATH. in his disciples-they were such only in name. There was no heart in their worship, for they had ceased to study the Scriptures-had failed to walk in the old paths. The whole Christian world soon became per- fectly indifferent as to faith and manners, and hence the dark ages were introduced-ages of intellectual and spiritual darkness, which brooded alike over church and tate more than a thousand years. Finally, Wickliffe arose, "the morning star of the Reforma- tion." Then came Martin Luther, "the lion-hearted Saxon." Then John Calvin; then John Wesley, and others too numerous to mention. Brave men were these, who stood up in favor of the right of private judgment, and pleaded with the Roman hierarchy to give the people the Word of God in their own tongues -exhorting professed Christians to live "nearer to God." In the providence of God they were enabled to drive back the enemies of Truth and give the masses an opportunity to search the Scriptures and obey them unmolested. To secure the present amount of religious and polit- ical liberty enjoyed by the nations of earth, cost far more in blood and treasure than can be computed by human wisdom or ingenuity. Through fearful con- flicts, and sufferings the most terrible and heart-rend- ing, the Lord's people have thus triumphed over all opposition. At the beginning of the present century, notwith- standing the many advantages that had been gained, and the many and real privileges enjoyed, it is a con- ceded fact that a reformation was demanded among all the so-called orthodox churches-among all Chris- 16 233 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. tian people who conceived that they were free, and yet at the same time were in bondage through the influ- ence of human devices. In sadness, we are compelled to say that to-day, in this the nineteenth century, and in this the most free and enlighted land on which the sun shines, there are thousands in all the various de- nominations who are by no means free. This may not be accepted as a fact; but let some golden truth or fact in the New Testament be found which has never been discovered before. Let that distinguished min- ister of the gospel, who has been so fortunate as to make this discovery, earnestly contend for its accept- ance or adoption before his people in the sacred desk, or privately. He is surely right-scripturally, logic- ally, in every way right. This cannot be questioned. But alas! in the next association, council, synod or conference that convenes, his case is considered and it is ascertained that this same undeniable truth, fact, principle, promise, or whatever it may be, is an inno- vation, because, forsooth, it is in opposition to some time-honored item in the creed or in the usages of the church! And this discovery must be set aside, and the pious and enlightened minister of the Word of God must either be reprimanded or cast out of the synagogue. At the time the Campbells, B. W. Stone, Walter Scott and others inauguna ted this Reformation, vague speculations, false reasonings, dreams and visions supplanted, in a greater or less degree, the Living Oracles of God. Many who then sought the way into the kingdom of Christ, doubtless in all sincerity, felt that the " say- 234 JACOB CREATH. so " of the creeds must not only be respected, but from their decision in matters of faith and practice there could be no appeal. The inquiry then was not, "W What do the Scriptures teach " but, " What does the church say" " What does the creed demand" and this was looked upon as the safest, as it was the most comfortable way in which to please God. Almost all matters pertaining to duty and destiny were decided through creeds and dogmas. Here and there could be found men of real independence, who demurred and eagerly searched the Scriptures, unbiased by party or by any human dictation whatever. It is by no means an easy task to plant the truth in the understanding and the affections of those holding erroneous views. It is declared to be a fact that no two substances can occupy in the material world the same place at the same time. The one must be displaced before the other can enter and abide. False views in regard to religion, especially, must first be eradicated before correct views or just principles can possibly find a permanent place. Among the distinguished preachers of this Current Reformation, there were none more valiant in contend- ing for the faith once delivered to the saints than Jacob Creath, Jr. Finding the denominations in error, naturally a hero, possessing the spirit of a martyr, he could not, organized as he was, oppose anything he considered false with mildness, but opposed it with all his might-sometimes with vengeance. He gave no quarters, and asked for none. Not that he was reck- less or foolhardy-no, no. He was cool, deliberate, cautious; made up his mind after much and mature 235 236 - RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. deliberation. Truth was with him more precious than the most costly jewels of earth. Not one iota of it could he be persuaded to suppress, barter away or com- promise. It must be published and the people must understand it. He never trimmed his sails to catch the popular breeze-never offered an apology for any severe truth or fact in the Old or New Testament. Convinced that he occupied apostolic ground, that he stood upon the Rock which could and would withstand all the assaults of the powers of darkness, he de- nounced, not always in the mildest terms, the tradi- tions of men which in a large degree had rendered null and void the Word of God. It was very difficult for him to persuade himself to believe that the leaders of orthodoxy believed with their whole heart the Script- ures. For example, when it is affirmed in the New Testament that "faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God," how could any one believe this to be true and flatly deny it, or explain away its meaning, and then teach the people that in the conver- sion and sanctification of the sinner the Holy Spirit acts or operates independently of the Word, or the gospel, or any medium whatever, when there is not one sentence or word in the Scriptures favoring such a view or conception He had not the least patience with preachers who were inclined to speculate, or theorize, or infer as to this, that, or the other ili-ttter concerning which the Lord had not revealed his mind. He feared to con- tradict the plain word of divine truth, and dared not attempt to make the words of the Holy Spirit tally JACOB CREATH. with his own crude notions of what ought or ought not to be. When the standard works of the various denomina- tions, as well as their creeds, plainly teach that bap- tism, administered in the name of Christ, to the be- lieving penitent, having confessed Christ, is for or in order to remission of past sins, what sort of an apology could be made for the better-informed ministers of the gospel who denied what these, their own witnesses, declared to be true, and ran counter to the plainest teaching of the New Testament Not only so, but these same ministers of Jesus Christ not only ignored this proposition, but made light of those believing it, and occasionally would call them by all sorts of hard names. This proposition is so clearly set forth in the New Testament Scriptures that he could not see how it was possible for those seeking the truth to deny it, in part or in whole. In all this he may have been uncharitable-may not have made the proper allowance for early train- ing, or the unfavorable influence of the times, in shaping the views of those who but partially enjoyed the right of private judgment. Allow me to offer you, dear reader, an incident or two showing the pernicious power of prejudice. Holding what is usually called a protracted meet- ing, some years ago in South Kentucky with Elder C. M. Day, we noticed that a lady belonging to the Bap- tist Church came regularly and listened attentively. Bro. Day said to her one afternoon, as she was about to leave for home, " My sister, how do you like the preaching "Very well, with one or two excep- 237 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. tions," she replied. "And what is it you do not like" Bro. Day inquired, with a smile. "Well, you teach baptism for remission of sins, which I do not believe to be scriptural," she remarked, in kindness. " Why," said Bro. Day, "is it not declared in so many words in the New Testament that baptism is for remission of sins " " 0 yes, I know it is; but for the very life of me I cannot believe it," she responded, and no doubt in the sincerity of an honest heart. At the time Benjamin Graham was baptized by my father, there was much discussion in the neighbor- hood as to what the Disciples taught, and no little bitterness manifested by the opposition. Soon after Benjamin was baptized, his father went over to see him and talk with him. He found Ben in his shop, cutting away with his hand-ax at a large beam of wood: Stopping in the door, he remarked: " I under- stand, Ben, that you have joined the Campbellite Church." " No," said Ben, " I have not; I don't know any church by that name. I have joined the Christian Church." "All the same," the old gentleman con- tinued, " those belonging to that church believe in water-nothing but water." "Father," answered Ben, i' you are mistaken; they believe and teach that baptism is a condition of pardon-that proper sub- jects are baptized for remission of sins." "Ben, this is a false and dangerous doctrine," replied the father. Ben quickly answered: "Does not Peter say, 'Repent and, be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost'" Turning around quickly, and walking away, his father remarked, "I don't care 238 JACOB CREATH. what Peter says!" Ben looked at his father with astonishment. Finally, thinking what he had done- denied the very words of an inspired apostle-he came back, and looking in at the door said in a sub- dued tone of voice: " Ben, I take back my last re- mark; I do care what Peter says, but I don't believe that baptism is for remission of sins!" James Graham, the father of Ben, was ever an hon- est man, and soon after this conversation began to search the Scriptures anew, to ascertain his duty to God. He became a member of the Christian Church and lived and died in the faith. How difficult for those who have made up their minds on partial evi- dence. to walk in the light! In all religious bodies there have ever been, and will ever be, those who have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. With their eyes fixed on the words of Holy Writ, they will deny them, so zealous are they for the traditions of the fathers. Not unfrequently was it said, years ago, that the Disciples of Christ taught that all persons not bap- tized would certainly be lost, and because they taught then and teach now that proper subjects are baptized for or in order to the remission of sins. Thomas Campbell, on a certain occasion, had deliv- ered a very clear and scriptural discourse, on the design of Christian baptism. He had adhered through- out to the teaching of Christ and the apostles, not offering to present his opinion at any point. At the close of the sermon, an inquisitive gentleman arose in the audience and by permission inquired: "What is your opinion, Mr, Campbell will any unbaptized per- 239 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. son be saved" Mr. Campbell answered: "What saith the Scriptures 'Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature; he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be damned."' The gentleman repeated his question: " I did not ask you for S1cripture in support of what you teach; I want to know your opinion. What will become of the unbaptized after death Give us your opinion." Mr. Campbell again inquired: " What saith the Scriptures 'Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost."' Still the gentleman was not satisfied, and plied his question, not in the least degree daunted: " I desire to know your opinion. Will the unbaptized be saved " And Bro. Campbell, in nowise disconcerted, still clung to the one Book, answering: " What saith the Scriptures 'And now why tarriest thou Arise and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the'Lord.' My friend, your opinion is as good as my opinion, and my opinion is as good as your opinion in answering your questions and deter- mining the truth in the premises, and neither your opinion nor mine is worth one straw. Opinions are not proof of any question-are private property-hold yours and I will hold mine on all untaught questions." This was sufficient and closed the discussion, and is certainly not a bad way to answer untaught questions. There have been godly men of clear heads and pure hearts who have been fond of looking into deep, hard, 240 JACOB CREATH. knotty propositions. It must be so-such men dearly love to walk very near to the crumbling edge of the awful abyss. The example is not good to timid souls. Still, the best that can be done is to let such brave hearts alone-treat them ever with great kindness, but never attempt to walk in their footsteps. At times Jacob Creath was full of humor; at others, he was exceedingly sad. He was fond-very fond- of reading, especially books relating to ecclesiastical affairs. He was thoroughly posted in church history, and familiar with all reformations, from Luther's to the present day. He loved to descant on the various efforts which have been made by the grand, fearless men in the religious world to give the Bible to the masses in their vernacular. I am of the opinion that no man in our ranks could discourse to the people more profitably on the revision of the Scriptures than Jacob Creath. He was chock-full of important, inter- esting facts, and earnestly and in plain language pre- sented them to those who ever heard him gladly. All honor to the self-denying ministers of the gospel in this Reformation who stood up in defense of the Word of God against the assaults of its enemies! They were not by any means perfect-occasionally saying or doing things in regard to missions, Sunday- schools and conventions, which things ought not to have been said-ought not to have been done. But this is not to be wondered at. Jacob Creath, as well as many of these faithful pio- neers, had suffered not a little from councils and asso- ciations, which claimed to hold the keys of the apostle Peter, and to possess the authority to bind or loose, as 241 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. they saw proper. Remembering these things, and knowing that " the best of men are men at best," they could not conscientiously sanction certain movements inaugurated and sustained by their brethren, whom they loved and with whom they -labored in the spread of the gospel. As missionaries, these men were ever going from place to place, amid sorrows and burdens and heart- burnings, struggling to provide for the temporal wants of those whom God had given them; yet so constrained by the love of Christ and the love they bore their fel- lows that to them they must declare the whole counsel of God until released from all earthly cares and labors by the hand of death. It is an unspeakable pleasure to review the lives of such unselfish preachers as Jacob Creath and his co- workers. As a great cloud of witnesses they rise up before us and bear witness in no ambiguous terms in favor of the untold riches, the exultant hopes and un- failing consolation of the religion of Jesus Christ. Proudly they stand as monuments, proclaiming in their silent majesty the truth of our holy religion, pointing the weary and way-worn pilgrims of earth to the way that leads to life eternal and honors imper- ishable. All honor to these intrepid men who have kept the faith, finished their course, and now entered upon that rest which remains for the Lord's chosen ones! In the year 1858, my wife and I were boarding with Bro. H. P. Owsley, who lived eight miles south of the town of Hopkinsville, Christian county, Ky. Bro. Creath, who was at that time agent for the Bible 242 JACOB CREATH. Union, paid me a visit, intending to preach or lecture the following Lord's day on the Revision of the Scriptures. Returning from an evangelistic tour, I found Bro. Creath seated before the fire-place, and Major Owsley trying to entertain him, while Sister Owsley and my wife, seated on his right and left, were silently noting the great failure of the Major in that direction. When I addressed him he spoke politely, but with unusual seriousness. His speech and man- ner were such that one not well acquainted with him would have been inclined to ask him if a dear friend had not lately departed this life. However, I took in the situation in a moment, and resolved, if possible, not only to make my sombre-looking brother talk, but laugh. Many times previously had I met him and knew him to be a man of moods; also, as some per- sons would say, of sour looks. But I will not indorse all that others have said, or may say, in regard to my brother. I verily believe that many persons were very much mistaken as to this conception of the dis- position of Jacob Creath, Jr., especially those whose judgments has been harsh. Said I: "Bro. Creath, do you remember'how unkindly you treated a brother Methodist, after having lectured on the Revision of the Scriptures at P-i" "No, I have no recollec- tion of the affair; none whatever," was his answer. "Very well, my brother, I will see if I cannot, by your permission, bring it to your remembrance: After the delivery of your lecture, this brother arose and stated that he was happy in being permitted to hear speak one of the distinguished men engaged in the Revision of the Word of God-that he was a preacher in the 343 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. Methodist Church and desired a little information as to the meaning of a certain passage of Scripture, which he quoted. He then asked you very politely to be kind enough to give him the desired information. Having taken his seat, you stood up, and looking him full in the face a moment, inquired: 'Are you a Meth- odist preacher' 'Yes, sir, I profess to be such,' he answered. 'And don't understand that passage of Scripture' you further inquired, to which he replied: ' I do not, my brother.' ' Very well, then,' you con- cluded, ' never do you undertake to preach again."' " 0 yes, I believe I call to mind the circumstances," he said, and laughed heartily, adding that he was not bothered any more on that occasion by that Methodist preacher. Another case of a similar character occurred with Bro. Creath, to which I directed his attention: "At the close of one of your lectures on Revision, in the town of R-d, you said: ' There are nine denomina- tions now engaged in assisting the Bible Union in the work of revising the Scriptures, and should any per- son desire to propound any pertinent question,' you remarked that you were prepared to answer. A good- looking gentleman stood up in the center of the crowded house and remarked that 'he would be pleased to know the names of the distinguished men who were aiding in this work, especially the nanies of the Methodist preachers or scholars.' You inquired, ' Who are you, sir I want to know you that I nlay understand how to address you.' 'I am a Methodist preacher,' he readily and bravely answered. You re- plied, ' I will not give you the names you wish.' 244 JACOB CREATH. 'Why' he asked. ' Well, my brother, I will not do so for this simple and sufficient reason-to keep theo- logical whifflers and understrappers from doing the Bible Union an injury,' you retorted. 'Ah! just as I expected,' he continued; 'you keep some things in the dark, do you You are a secret organization, then, are you You are unwilling for your deeds to come to light-to be seen of men I am a Methodist preacher, and what I do, and my brethren do, I for one am perfectly willing shall be known of all men. I am opposed now and forever to the revision of the Script- ures.' You replied, 'You say you are a Methodist preacher and opposed to the revision of the Scriptures. Will you all ow me to weigh you on this question' He answered, 'I do not know that I understand what you mean; but I am ready to be tried or weighed by you or by anyone else on this subject.' 'I'll put you in one scale against revision, and John Wesley and Adam Clarke in the other in favor of it. How much do you think you'll weigh ' you asked. Hesitating not a moment, he vociferated, ' Not much against such men.' 'Agreed to that,' you responded; 'we will now look to the Lord and be dismissed.' And sure enough you dismissed over his head and shoulders, leaving him in a fit of passion, blustering as to what he would do against the Bible Union." "Yes, sir, something like that happened with me and a haughty Methodist preacher in the town of R-d;" and with much good humor he related to me and others several anecdotes during the evening. Time passed away pleasantly, and supper being an- nounced, we all walked into the dining-room and took 245 RECOLLECTIONS OF MFEN OF FAITH. our places at the table. Here an incident occurred, which did no special harm, still it was not enjoyed by any one of the company. Being characteristic of the man, I will jot it down. Bro. Creath had requested Sister Owsley to prepare him hot-water-tea for supper, preferring it to any other drink in the evening. Sister Owsley concluded to allow the brother to make it of the right temperature, so that he would be suited. Hence she put just a little warm water in the cup, in- tending to add hot water, or instruct him to do so. But alas! he sweetened and tasted this in the cup be- fore Sister Owsley had accomplished her purpose. He remarked, "This water is only tepid; I wanted hot water." " 0, Bro. Creath," exclaimed Sister Owsley, "make it to suit your own taste-just to your liking;" and she ordered the servant to bring the boiling water from the stove, where she had left it ready for him. But he pushed the cup aside and could not be induced to drink anything, notwithstanding the earnest plead- ing of the good sister, imploring him to pour in the boiling water and make it as he liked it. He was abrupt in all this, but intended no affront-none what- ever; it was only his way-possibly not a desirable way, but I am sure I knew him better than anyone else at the table, and am ready to testify that he meant no ill-treatment toward anyone. He partook bountifully, did ample justice to the good supper- ate twice as much as anyone else, shall I say Well, this would be in the bounds of truth. But then he was a very large man, in excellent health, and no doubt needed more. Supper over, a few hours spent in conversation, 246 JACOB CREATH. reading and prayer, we then all retired to " sweet repose." About the hour of midnight, I think it must have been, I heard my brother moaning as if in agony. I hastened to his room and found him seated on the bedside, suffering no little from sundry aches and pains. Alas! too much supper; he was now atoning for his imprudence. With the help of hot teas, drugs, nostrums and certain potions, our beloved brother was soon relieved and once more at rest. With the light of the Lord's day morning Be was up and appar ently happy as the lark. However, after breakfast he became very much depressed, not even deigning to engage in conversation with any one. Finally he said to me in a subdued tone: " Will you walk with me I am greatly burdened with sorrow-must be re lieved of the great load on my heart." We walked westward, and passing a road leading north and south, entered a forest and came upon the banks of a small, clear stream of water; then turning northward, we walked toward a beautiful clump of cedars. The wild birds were singing over our heads, flying hither and thither through the branches of the trees, lighted up with the bright beams of the morning sun. Stand- ing a moment, he glanced at the cedar grove, thickly carpeted on the outer edge with moss. "Come, let us pray," he remarked, with a sadness peculiar to him- self. We entered, and bowing down on our knees, he began to pray. As he advanced, his voice trembled, indicating that he was weeping bitterly, as well as praying most earnestly. He begged the Lord pite- ously to forgive his many sins, and not to forsake him, but to be near in the day of temptation-in hours 247 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. of deep darkness and fearful trial, as he battled against sin and Satan. Such a prayer I may possibly have heard before, or since, but of this I have no rec- ollection. There was in it more of pathos, contrition, penitence, acknowledged helplessness and real de- pendence on the Father of mercies, through a crucified Redeemer, than any prayer it has been my privilege to hear in all my life. Having finished, he wiped his furrowed cheeks, wet with tears, and then asked me to pray. I did the best I could, weeping as I called on the God of all consola- tion for help. As a matter of course, I prayed for my aged brother by my side-for his family from which he was separated by many hundred miles. We arose, finally, and walked back to the house in silence. I have understood from many brethren that they, too, have passed through similar touching scenes with our venerable brother. Many a time have I propounded to myself the ques- tion, Why all this wrestling with God as did Jacob of old with the angel when in great distress Like Jacob, our dear Bro. Creath had passed through many and sore trials in his earthly pilgrimage. Often had he been hard pressed by the emissaries of Satan, as well as by false brethren. And did he feel that he could not possibly overcome these, save by deepest humiliation and most devout prayer to God or did his shortcomings and misdemeanors come at times so vividly before him as to cast a cloud over his path- way and shut out all light and hope, save that which beamed from the face of God And under these de- 248 JACOB C1EATH. pressing circumstances, did he realize that all his help must come from God John Knox, who "never feared the face of man," the bravest of the brave among Scotland's brave preachers, was wont to exclaim in agony in prayer to God, " Give me Scotland, or I die! " And did not our laborious, self-denying brother go from place to place, through this evil world, preaching the Word, or beg- ging the Christian people of this favored land to give the Word of God to all nations in their own tongue, overwhelmed with grief Did he not thus toil and thus suffer, ever bearing about with him a broken heart, a burdened soul Surely there must be some things which the most devoted servant of Christ tells only to God-some things which the dearest friend can never know- which can only be spoken to God in hushed breath- ings and at a secret throne of grace. Jacob Creath loved the truth, pure and unadulterated-truth un- mixed with human tradition or human speculation. God's Holy Word was to him all and in all. He would sooner by far lose the last drop of his blood than part with this blessed Book of books, with its glorious, its precious promises. He gave his long and eventful life to the service of his King and Redeemer, and so far as known to the writer of this sketch, sustained among those who knew him best an unblemished character- As he neared the spirit-land, while the outer man was giving way, his hopes grew brighter day by day. When the time came for him to cross the dark waters and join the immortal ones on the "shining shore," with an undaunted courage and an unfailing faith in 249 250 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. Jesus, he passed beyond the cold river to his ever- lasting reward. Dear brother, your slumbers shall be sweet and un- disturbed, until the bright morning of an endless day. I trust, by the grace of God, to see you by and by. Till then, farewell! CHAPTER XIII. D UKE YO UNG. HIS FIRMNESS-RUMOR-SYMPATHY-GREAT IN GOOD- WILL. Duke Young was born in North Carolina, Nov. 15, 1793. His father, John Young, a strict Calvinistic Baptist, removed to Tennessee when Duke was but a few years old, and educated his family as best he could. In that early day, the facilities afforded for doing this were very poor. Duke must therefore be content with a smattering knowledge of English gram- mar and arithmetic, as well as reading and writing. When but a boy he was fond of reading good books, and eagerly sought such and studied them closely. Hence, when he became a man, he was much better informed than the majority of persons of his age in the neighborhood in which he was brought up. In the spring of 1817, he came to the State of Missouri, and fortunately settled in a community in which he had the privilege of hearing preaching, such as it was, now and then. He soon became deeply interested on the subject of religion, and united with the church then called "New Lights," or the "Christian Order." Very soon after this he began to speak publicly in the church of which he was a devoted member. But he was not altogether satisfied with the usages or 251 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. customs of that "Christian Order." He found, by reading the New Testament, especially the Acts of the Apostles, that the mourner's bench, as it was called, was not used by the divinely inspired preachers who first told the people what to believe and what to do that they might receive the pardon of past sins. What must he do Why, give this up at once! He had the courage of his convictions, was ever a moral hero, and forthwith abandoned it. The Bible was not for it, and he could not and would not use it longer. During the years 1824-26, he spent much of his time in preaching in the counties of Pike, Howard, Boone and others. Being now satisfied with the car- dinal points held by the "Christian Order," lie was always prepared to discuss them when called upon to do so. About the year 1833, he had what he denominated an off-hand debate with two leading preachers in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church-Col. Horn, and Chatt Ewing, brother to Phineas Ewing, founder of that church. These preachers were engaged in holding a meeting at the private residence of one of his neighbors, and he attended the meeting. In their preaching they had misrepresented the views entertained by Duke Young, now a member of the Christian Church, and when called upon by them to speak, he stated that he would, by their permission, corne ct certain declarations as to what he and his brethren believed. Before making the correction, he said that these preachers were igno- rant of what he and his brethren believed and taught, and that they seemed to be ignorant of the teaching of 252 DUKE YOUNG. the Christian Scriptures, as they held to infant bap- tism, which had no scriptural warrant. When he sat down, one of them arose and answered him. He re- plied, and then the other one stood up against him, contending in favor of infant baptism. Thus they dis- cussed for some time this question, when the meeting closed, and the preachers saw proper to return not again to that neighborhood. Duke preached in his neighborhood soon thereafter, and many Presbyterians united with the Christian Church. Not many months passed after this discussion when an able preacher, Robert Morrow, of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, determined to challenge Young and show up his doctrine in his own neighborhood. Morrow and Young met, and for some days debated on infant baptism and the Sonship of Christ, and other issues. At the close, the Disciples were confirmed in their doctrine as presented by Young from the Script- ures, but the Presbyterians thought debates a very poor way of reaching the truth and wanted no more of them! About the years 1836-38, Duke Young was preach- ing at several points in the counties of Clay, Ray and Jackson. It required three or four weeks to make the rounds in this circuit on horseback. At one of his places of preaching was a strong Baptist Church, with Ben Riley, an able and good man, as preacher. Con- fining himself strictly to the teaching of Christ and his apostles, Duke Young had in some degree disturbed the minds of these pious Baptists, and Ben Riley must come to the rescue-set aside the New Testament doc- trine preclaimed by Young and once more settle their 253 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. views. He found this a more difficult job than he at first imagined. Nothing would do but Young and Riley must debate on various questions concerning which Young had been previously preaching from time to time. Riley was assisted by several strong Baptist preachers, while Young was alone. Prior to the debate, Young met on his circuit Joel H. Hayden and Allen Wright, at Barry, Clay county, or at Independence, in Jackson county, I now forget which. Said he to Hayden and Wright: "Brethren, you must help me; Ben Riley is a large man-hard to handle-besides will have the aid of some of the ablest of the Baptist preachers; you must come over and assist me." "No, Duke," said Hayden, pleas- antly, " you got into the fight without our having any- thing to say or do in the matter, and now you may fight it out alone." The discussion closed, with Ben Riley and many of the Baptists being greatly confused, saying that they never viewed the Scriptures in the light presented by Duke Young. Riley and Young were fast friends until the death of Riley. While Riley died a Baptist, numbers of his church came into the Christian Church, among these all of his children. During his ministry in Northwest Missouri, Duke Young had a number of brief debates with Methodists, Baptists and Universalists on various religious topics; also with the leading Mormons who first came to Jackson county. He was quick to make up his mind in any given case, when all the evidence was before him. He was none of your milk-and-cider men, but was decided and 254 DUKE YOUNG. firm in all matters of importance. For several years before his death he preached but little, owing to the poor health of his Christian wife, who fell asleep in Jesus some five or six months prior to his death. With but little warning and without suffering, he died from a stroke of paralysis, Oct. 31, 1857, at the resi- dence of his son, Judge W. J. Young, Atchison county, Kansas. Thus passed away, greatly lamented, one of the bravest and most useful of the pioneers of this Reformation. Like most of the bold pioneers of the Current Refor- mation, Elder Duke Young was a man of positive character. What he believed, he believed with all his heart, and in the name of his Master, and with un- questioning confidence proclaimed to the people. He never tampered with any of the commandments of the New Testament-never compromised one iota of what he conceived to be the truth. He read and studied but one Book, and had but one mission in this world, namely, to "preach the Word." He was full of zeal and energy, and loved to go from place to place preaching the gospel of Christ. He was morally and physically a brave man. Mingling much with his fellows, being a close observer and possessing a clear head, he understood human nature thoroughly. He and Elder S. S. Trice organized the church at Antioch, Clinton county, Mo. This church was ten miles west of Plattsburg-is now located at Gower, one mile south of the old church. While these two men were preaching day and night in the grove and in private houses, pressing the claims of Christ upon 255 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. those who crowded to hear them, an intelligent lady came forward with others and confessed her faith in Christ. It was announced by Bro. Young that on the next day he would baptize those who had made the good confession, this lady among the rest. Her hus- band was present and heard the announcement. On adjourning the meeting, some one came to Bros. Young and Trice and remarked that there was trouble in store for the preacher who attended to the baptizing on the next day. "And what is it" inquired Bro. Young. "Well," said the gentleman, "I have just had a conversation with the husband of the lady to be baptized and he declares that he will put a ball of lead through the heart of the preacher who dares to baptize his wife!" Some advised that the baptism be de- ferred for a time; others were of the opinion that the man after reflecting on the matter would change his purpose and not molest anyone: Bro. Young listened to the various views expressed by his brethren, and after eyeing the husband who had made the threat, remarked, with a pleasant twinkle in his eye, "That man looks like a good-hearted fellow; he is certainly not a bad man-is only super-excited. I would not be astonished if he should make the confession to-morrow and be baptized with his good wife." He came to the meeting that night, listened attentively and was much more serious than usual. Several confessed, but this man kept his place, and when the benediction was pronounced, he sought out his wife in the great audi- ence and without a word to anyone went home in silence. On the following day, at 11 A. M., he came back to 256 DUKE YOUNG. the meeting with his wife. At the first invitation he broke down and surrendered to Christ, in the midst of great rejoicing. So it is, the truth will cut its way to the stoutest hearts. No man on earth who will give the gospel fair play can possibly resist it. Its power is overwhelming under such circumstances. Elder Duke Young was ever a staunch Democrat-a Jackson Democrat-and was an intimate friend of "Old Hickory." Those well acquainted with Gen. Jackson knew that he loved and assisted his friends. At one time he remarked to Young that he could ob- tain for him a lucrative position in the Land Office, located at Lexington, Mo. This would have been a temptation to some men, but was not to Bro. Young. He declined the office with many thanks and clung to his chosen profession, preferring preaching and pov- erty to political honors and affluence. He possessed a great fund of humor, and was a gen- eral favorite with all Christian preachers who knew him well, notwithstanding he treated them rather cavalierly at times. For several years he lived and labored in Northwest Missouri, making his home in Andrew county. During these years he often attended the great meetings of the brethren held in the central part of the State, at Lexington, Columbia or Fulton, where he was ever delighted to meet the "fallen heroes "-T. M. Allen, T. N. Gains, Marcus P. Wills, Jacob Creath, Jr., Joel H. Hayden -and others, gather- ing up, as he phrased it, "powder and ball" sufficient to do him through an entire campaign. At one of these meetings it was announced at the close of the 257 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. services that on the next day Elders Young and Gains would preach-Bro. Young in the morning at 11 o'clock, and Bro. Gains at night. It so happened thdt these two brethren lodged together over night at the same place. They were very intimate and always pleased to be together. After retiring to rest. they had much conversation before going to sleep. Bro. Gains gave Bro. Young the heads of a discourse he purposed delivering the following evening. It was a fine one and Bro. Young was delighted with it, and thanked Bro. Gains for laying it before him. The neXt morn- ing at 11 o'clock, when Bro. Young rose up and began to read his text, a peculiar smile lighted up his pleas- ant features. With as much gravity as possible, he proceeded to deliver the veritable discourse of Bro. Gains, letting him and others know that he was " on the ground " for the very purpose of learning as much as possible from all of his dear brethren. Bro. Gains was of course astonished no little, and also " used up;" but there was no harm done, for when the time arrived for Bro. Gains to preach he was equal to the occasion. Bro. Duke Young was a man of great sympathy and benevolence. He was not only a godly man in con- versation and in life, but believed that God was ever near his people, aiding them constantly. He was not able to see how there could exist a general providence without a special providence. In this conviction he lived and died. The following incident, touching and somewhat amusing, is related of him: On his way to a great meeting, held at Lexington, Mo., he was traveling on horseback and alone. The morning was clear and 358 DUKE YOUNG. cool. He overtook a poor woman, with two or three ragged children, walking. Entering into conversation, he soon learned that she was a widow, and that she and her little ones had started on their day's journey hungry and without a cent of money with which to buy bread. He immediately gave her all the money he had in his pocket, telling her at the same time to be of good cheer, that the Lord would certainly pro- vide for her and her children. Riding on, musing on the fortunes and misfortunes appertaining to this world, he soon arrived at the Missouri River. The ferryman being on the other side, hle shouted aloud to him to "come over, he desired to cross!" Hitching his horse, he sat down at the root of a large tree, and for the first time realized that he had not a cent of money with which to pay his way over the river. For some time he sat in deep thought, now and then un- consciously striking the end of his riding-whip in the sand and dust at his feet. Finally he struck and un- earthed a half-dollar in silver. He joyfully picked it up, remarking that the Lord gave it to him just at the time he needed it most, and no mortal could ever have convinced him to the contrary. All the casuistry of philosophers or inetaphysicians. with their ". ins and outs," could never have availed anything in setting aside this firm conviction. There are some preachers, who, because of their moral heroism, strict integrity and force of character, can do certain inexpedient or unlawful things and hold their influence among the people, while others less bold, but equally honest, doing the same things, lose their reputation and influence forever. 259 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. The responsibility of most preachers is sufficiently heavy, without shouldering that of others. Duke Young could carry his own, and sometimes that of his neighbor, and still walk as erect as the wild man of the forest. Once holding a meeting in Nodaway county, Mo., many years ago, numbers were becoming obedient to the faith. He observed that a certain person was attending the meeting-a man in whom he had not the slightest confidence-in fact the unfortunate man had no friends in his neighborhood and was shunned and scorned by the more honorable. He was dishonest, a falsifier, wholly and in every way unreliable, an in- cessant talker, when opportunity offered, or he could secure a listener. People generally believed that he was constantly engaged in pilfering, although he was so shrewd and secret in his movements that no one as yet had succeeded in trapping him. Bro. Young, strange as it may seem, was by no means pleased in noting the fact that this worthless fellow was becoming more and still more interested in the preaching. Finally it was understood that he pro- posed joining the church. Sure enough, one evening he came forward for the express purpose of making the good confession and entering the church. But Bro. Young had had plenty of time to look the whole ground over, and was not only not disconcerted in the least degree, but ready for the worst-fully equal to the emergency. Standing before this unfor- tunate one, and the large audience, he remarked sub- stantially: " Our Methodist brethren are in the habit of taking on six months' trial those who are seeking 260O DUKE YOUNG. religion, or wishing to join the church, and if at the close of this term of probation they have proved them- selves worthy, they are inducted into full fellowship and allowed to enjoy all the blessings of the church militant. Brethren, this is not a bad plan, although I have never adopted it and never expect to. But I have been revolving in my mind what to do, and think I have a better plan-one that is peculiarly adapted to the case before us. It is this: By the consent of the church I propose to reverse the Methodist plan: in- stead of taking this person into the church on six months' trial, he will be allowed the privilege of re- maining outside the pales of the church. where he has ever been, and may possibly continue to be, until the end of his earthly pilgrimage. He will not be per- mitted to enjoy the six months' Methodist trial, ex- cept just where he now is. If at the conclusion of six months he finds that he is able to quit all the bad habits of which he has been accused, namely, drink- ing, swearing, lying, stealing, playing cards, etc., etc., and if he can establish the same to the satisfaction of this church, I will then joyfully take his confession and assist in introducing him into the fellowship of the disciples of Christ. I know this is contrary to the primitive order of things, and that we as a people are greatly opposed to all innovations. But, brethren, there are exceptions to all rules, and the case before us calls loudly for the exception. I am in dead earn- est, and unless there is opposition the matter is set- tled in this way." The brethren were as silent as the grave-dumb as an oyster-and Bro. Young's unique proposition was 261 262 RECOLLECTIONS OF MEN OF FAITH. accepted. The benediction was soon pronounced, and Bro. Young could boast in after years of one, and only one, mourner who never " got- through ," as he phrased it, "till the day of his death."