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Title: Autobiography of Frank G. Allen, Minister of the Gospel - and Selections from his Writings
Author: Allen, F. G. (Frank Gibbs), 1836-1887
Language: English
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AUTOBIOGRAPHY

OF

FRANK G. ALLEN,

Minister of the Gospel

AND

SELECTIONS FROM HIS WRITINGS



EDITED BY

ROBERT GRAHAM

_President of the College of the Bible, Lexington, Ky._



CINCINNATI
GUIDE PRINTING & PUBLISHING CO.
1887

Copyright, 1887, by
THE GUIDE PRINTING & PUBLISHING CO.



Dedication.

To all who love the Old Paths,
This Volume,
In Memory of One Who Found Them
And Walked Therein,
Is Respectfully Inscribed, by
The Editor.



PREFACE.


By prescription, which often has the force of law, a book should have
both a _Preface_ and an _Introduction_: the first relating to the
writer; the second to the things written. I may well dispense with the
latter, for what is here written the humblest capacity can understand;
and it would be cruel to detain him long on the porch who is anxious to
enter the building.

But, dear reader, a word with you (for that is the meaning of
"Preface") before you begin this unpretentious little book, the joint
production of an author, an editor, and a publisher.

It is due the first, to say that he wrote what is here called his
Autobiography in great physical weakness, and without expecting that it
would appear in this form. This will account for its homely garb, and
apologize for it, if apology be necessary. Frank Allen had no time to
spend upon mere style in anything he wrote. He aimed at clearness and
force of expression, and reached these in a remarkable degree in his
latter days. If any one, therefore, should take up this volume
expecting to find literary entertainment, he will have the search for
his pains; but if he seeks for what is far better, the secret of a life
devoted to God and goodness, told in plain, unvarnished English, he
will not be disappointed.

When I received from the gifted author the record of his "travel's
history," I intended to write his Life, but death came and found us,
not him, unprepared; and so, under the constraint of other and pressing
duties, my purpose was reluctantly abandoned. Besides, upon examination
it was found that with a few changes and additions here and there,
these memoranda, as they came from the hand of their author, could,
under the circumstances, appear in that form and do him no discredit.

Such is my admiration of this noble man, and such my deference to what
I am sure must be the desire of his friends, that I have preferred to
let _him_ tell in simple phrase the strange story of his struggles and
triumphs; and if its perusal should give the reader half the pleasure
it has been to me to prepare it for the press, I shall not have labored
in vain. The book is intended to be a _Memorial Volume_, and especially
one to encourage young men who, under adverse circumstances, are
striving to qualify themselves to preach the gospel. Bro. Allen was
always in warm and loving sympathy with these--so much so, that he was
rightly called the young preacher's friend.

It is a pleasure to say that such is the veneration of the publishers,
The Guide Printing and Publishing Company, for the memory of our
deceased brother, that but for them this tribute would hardly have
appeared. With a generosity as rare as it is praiseworthy, they have
undertaken to publish the work in the best style of their art, at a low
price, and without any pecuniary risk to Sister Allen; and, indeed, in
all their transactions with her they have given abundant proof that men
can carry into business the benevolent spirit of pure and undefiled
religion.

It only remains to be said that whatever profits arise from the sale of
this book go to the wife and children of its lamented author, and that
should sufficient encouragement be given, a companion volume containing
the letters and miscellaneous productions of Bro. Allen may in due time
be issued.

THE EDITOR.

LEXINGTON, Ky., May, 1887.



CONTENTS.


                                                                 Page.

PART I.--AUTOBIOGRAPHY.

CHAPTER I.

Birth and Ancestors. Family Circumstances. "Fist and Skull"
Entertainment. Removal to Ohio and Return. Fight with his Mother.
Gets Lost. His Father Buys a Farm. The "Improvements." Plenty of
Hard Work. His Opinion of Work and of Play.                         1


CHAPTER II.

His First School. The School-house. The Teacher. The Order of
Reciting. Spelling Matches. First Sweetheart. Extremes in Likes
and Dislikes. Fondness for Study. Improvement in Schools.           7


CHAPTER III.

His Religious Experience. Tries to be a Methodist. Hopes to Become
a Preacher. Boy Preaching. Attends a Sunday-school. "Chaws" Tobacco.
Goes to Love Feast. Mourners' Bench Experience. Is Puzzled and
Disgusted.                                                         12


CHAPTER IV.

Fun and Mischief. His Little Cousin and the "Gnats." The Aurora
Borealis. A Bumble-bee Scrape. Another Bee Scrape. Justification by
Faith Alone. Readiness to Fight. Love of Justice. No Surrender.    17


CHAPTER V.

Given to Abstraction of Thought. Cases in Point. Opinion of
Debating Societies. Perseverance. Consumption. Endurance. More
Comfortable Home. Death of his Father. Love of Fashionable
Amusements. Meets his Future Wife. Is Married. Tribute to his
Wife. Her Father and Mother.                                       25


CHAPTER VI.

Goes to Housekeeping. Discussions with Mr. Maddox. Attends Meeting.
Is Baptized by William Tharp. Double Damages for an Old Horse.
Begins Trading. Moves to Floydsburg. Description of the Place.     31


CHAPTER VII.

Tries to Become a Politician. Fails. Last Act as a Politician.
Tries to Join the Southern Army. Fails Again. His First
Appointment. Feeling of Responsibility. His Plan. Text. Analysis
of Sermon. Buys a Family Bible. Rules of Life.                     36


CHAPTER VIII.

Resolves to go to College. Friends Oppose. Wife Decides It. Hard
Living and Hard Work. Impaired Health. Preaches for his Home
Church. Father-in-law Dies. "Frank, Be a True Man." House Robbed.
"Scraps." College Incidents. First Pay for Preaching. Holds Several
Meetings. Dishonest Preacher.                                      43


CHAPTER IX.

Leaves College. Goes to Alexandria, Ky. An Adventure in Ohio. A
Baby _not_ Baptized. Peril in Crossing the River. Opens his School.
Makes Some Money. Buys a Nice Home.                                52


CHAPTER X.

Narrow Escapes. Is Thrown from a Horse. Has Pneumonia. Nearly
Killed. Self-possession. Almost Drowned. Eludes Angry Soldiers.
Reflections.                                                       58


CHAPTER XI.

He Abandons the School-room. Remarkable Meeting near Alexandria.
Incidents. Establishes a Church. Mischief-making Preachers.
Long and Severe Attack of Typhoid Fever. Does not Lose Hope.
Gratitude.                                                         65


CHAPTER XII.

Sells out at Alexandria. Moves to Crittenden. Preaches there and at
Williamstown. Low State of these Churches. Plan of Work. Memorizing
in Sunday-school. Lack of Church Discipline. One-Man System. Moves
to New Liberty. Visits Mount Byrd                                  71


CHAPTER XIII.

History of the Mt. Byrd Church. When Established. Where. Charter
Members. Officers. Preachers. Number of Members. Three Things
Contributing to its Prosperity. New House of Worship. Serious
Trouble in the Church. How Settled. Method of Raising Money. The
Church Builds Allen a House. Organizes a Sunday-school. How it is
Conducted                                                          77


CHAPTER XIV.

He Moves to Mt. Byrd. Debate with J. W. Fitch. Preaches at Madison,
Ind. Protracted meetings at Columbia, Burksville, Thompson's
Church, Dover, Germantown, Pleasant Hill, Burksville again, Beech
Grove, Dover again                                                 88


CHAPTER XV.

Begins Preaching at Beech Grove. Debates with Elder Hiner. Amusing
Incident. Holds Many Meetings. Debates with Elder Frogge. Debates
again with Elder Hiner. Repudiates Miller's Book. Sick Again. Holds
more Meetings                                                      96


CHAPTER XVI.

Continues to Evangelize. Dr. Cook's Prescription. Incident at
Glendale. Peculiar Feature in the Meeting at Madisonville. The
Fractious Preacher at Sonora. Closes his Evangelistic Labors.
Establishes the _Old Path Guide_. The Bruner Debate               101


CHAPTER XVII.

Visits Midway. Attends the Missouri State Convention. Reflections.
Annual Sermons. Last Protracted Meeting. Kindness of Mt. Byrd,
Glendale and Smithfield Churches. Gives up Office Work. Goes to
Eureka, Ill. Country Home. Takes Cold at the Lexington Convention.
Goes to Florida                                                   107


CHAPTER XVIII.

Organizes a Church at DeLand. Health Improves. Relapses. Starts
Home. Resignation. Sells His Interest in the _Guide_. Begins
Writing again. Attends Two Conventions. Goes to Texas. At Home
again. Works on.                                                  113


CHAPTER XIX.

Reflections on his Fiftieth Birthday. What a Wonderful Being is
Man! Governed, not by Instinct, but by Reason. Man Lives by Deeds,
not Years. How to Grow Old. Half of Life Spent in Satan's Service.
Renewed Consecration. Last Three Birthdays. His Trust in God.     118


CHAPTER XX.

Conclusion, by the Editor. Tokens of Love from Many. Keeps Writing.
Controversy with the _Standard_. Last Meeting with His Mother.
Visited by Professors McGarvey and Graham. Commits His Writings to
the Latter. Visits Eminence and Lexington. Many Brethren Come to
See Him. Meeting at Mt. Byrd. Estimate of His Character. The
Closing Scenes. Farewell to His Family. Dies. Funeral Services.   127


PART II.--ADDRESSES.

   I.--Culture and Christianity: their Relation and Necessity.    137

  II.--Self-culture.                                              159

 III.--Plus Ultra _vs._ Ne Plus Ultra.                            175


PART III.--SELECTIONS.

NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

   I.--Christ the Lamb of God.                                    190

  II.--Christ the Bread of Life.                                  194

 III.--Christ the Water of Life.                                  199

  IV.--Christ the Son of God.                                     202

   V.--Christ the Son of Man                                      212

  VI.--Christ the Great Teacher                                   218

 VII.--Christ the Deliverer                                       223

VIII.--Christ the Great Physician                                 230

  IX.--Christ Our Mediator                                        236

   X.--Christ Our Mediator (continued)                            242

  XI.--Christ Our High Priest                                     249

 XII.--Christ Our Righteousness                                   254



PART I.--AUTOBIOGRAPHY.



CHAPTER I.

Birth and Ancestors. Family Circumstances. "Fist and Skull"
Entertainment. Removal to Ohio and Return. Fight with his Mother.
Gets Lost. His Father Buys a Farm. The "Improvements." Plenty of
Hard Work. His Opinion of Work and of Play.


I was born near La Grange, Oldham county, Ky., March 7, 1836. My
father, Francis Myers Allen, was born in Brown county, Ohio, December
7, 1807. He was the son of Thomas Allen, who, in 1812, when my father
was only five years old, moved from Brown county, O., to Shelby county,
Ky., and lived on Little Bullskin, a few miles west of Shelbyville.

My mother, Sarah A. Gibbs, was a daughter of James L. Gibbs and Mary
Ashby, and was born in Loudoun county, Va., April 6, 1808. The family
moved from Virginia to Kentucky in 1810, and lived in Shelbyville.

My grandparents on both sides reared large families of industrious,
thrifty children, and both grandfathers lived to be quite aged, my
mother's father living to be nearly one hundred years old.

My parents were married near Simpsonville, in Shelby county, April 9,
1829, and to them were born thirteen children--five boys and eight
girls--ten of whom lived to be grown. I was the fifth child--two boys
and two girls being older. The oldest child, a boy, died in infancy.
Being poor, both parents and children had to work hard and use strict
economy to make ends meet. We all knew much of the toils and hardships
of life, little of its luxuries. Both parents were blessed with good
constitutions, and had fine native intellects, but they were uneducated
save in the mere rudiments of the common school. They thought that "to
read, write and cipher" as far as the single rule of three, was all the
learning one needed for this life, unless he was going to teach. If my
father's mind had been trained, it would have been one of vast power.
He was philosophical, a good reasoner, and possessed of unusual
discrimination. He had also great coolness and self-possession in
emergencies.

In illustration of the latter statement, there recurs an incident in my
father's life that will bear recital. In those old-fashioned days of
"fist and skull" entertainments on public occasions, it was common for
each county to have its bully. Oldham at different times had
several--men of great muscular build and power, whose chief idea of
fame was that they could "whip anything in the county." My father was a
small man, weighing only one hundred and thirty pounds, and of a
peaceable disposition. Indeed, it was hard to provoke him to pugilistic
measures. But circumstances caused one of these bullies to force a
fight upon him at La Grange, in which the man was whipped so quickly
and so badly that no one knew how it was done. The man himself
accounted for it on the ground that "Mr. Allen came at me smiling."
This caused one or two others, at different times, to seek to
immortalize themselves by doing what the first had failed to
accomplish; but with the same result.

Being a farmer, my father was never without occupation, and he always
had plenty for his boys to do; hence I knew nothing but hard work on
the farm, except a few school days in winter, from the time I could
pull a weed out of a hill of corn till I reached my majority.

In the fall after I was born my parents moved from the farm near La
Grange to Brown county, O., not far from Hamersville. There they
remained a year; but my mother being much dissatisfied, they moved to
Floydsburg, Ky., and in the following spring, when I was two years old,
returned to the old place where I was born. Here the memories of life
begin. The incidents of daily life from this time forward are fresh in
my memory to-day. Here I had my first and last fight with my mother.
When I was three years old, my father, one day in June, was plowing
corn in a field not far from the house. When he went out, after noon, I
wanted to go with him. He took me behind him on the horse to the field.
When we got there I wanted to come back. He brought me back. I then
wanted to go to the field. He took me to the field. I then wanted to
come back. He brought me back. I then wanted to go to the field, but he
left me, telling my mother to take me in charge. Because she attempted
to control me I began fighting her. She whipped me with a small switch,
and I fought till I fell. Being completely exhausted, I begged my
oldest sister to fight for me, and when she refused and I had recovered
a little, I got up and went at it again. But when I fell the second
time, I lay till they took me and put me to bed, and there I remained
several days. Though I did not surrender, I never afterwards felt
disposed to renew the engagement. It was almost death to my mother, for
she did not chastise me in anger; her firmness, however, saved me.

In the spring of 1840 we moved to a farm some two miles south of La
Grange, on the road leading from that place to Ballardsville. Here we
lived one year. Only one event worth naming occurred while we lived
here. My mother took myself, an older sister, and a younger brother to
visit a sister she had living in La Grange. It was a beautiful summer
day, the roads were good, and we walked. My mother stopped at the house
of a neighbor on the road side for a few minutes, and told us to go on,
and be sure not to leave the road. With childish perversity we thought
the green fields better than the dusty road, and were soon into them.
It was not long till we were completely lost, and naturally wandered
the wrong way, not thinking to observe the sun and consider our course.
So, when we did not put in an appearance, the whole neighborhood was
aroused, and several hours of excitement followed before we were found.
My sister Bettie, two years my senior, was captain of this expedition.

In the spring of 1841 my father bought a farm of one hundred and twenty
acres, lying about three miles southwest from La Grange. Most of the
land was poor, and the "improvements" equally so. The house was a hewed
log cabin about 18×20 feet, with clap-board roof held down by weight
poles, and the walls "chinked" with mud. It had a large fire-place at
one end, and a chimney made of slats and mortar, familiarly known as a
"stick" chimney. The only window was paneless, with a solid shutter
hung on leather hinges, propped up with a stick, except when it was
wanted down. The floors above and below, were of broad lumber, and laid
loose. The door, when closed, was fastened with a big pin. A narrow
porch ran along the front, connecting with another at one end of the
house, between it and the kitchen. This was large and of the same style
of architecture as the house, but what that style was would puzzle any
one to tell. These two rooms and porches, with the smoke-house and
hen-house, constituted the "improvements" in that line. The
out-buildings were stables and a crib, of round logs. The fences were
all of rails, and inferior in kind. "Bars" and "slip-gaps" supplied the
place of gates in some places, and in others the fences had to be often
pulled down for lack of such conveniences. A fine spring gushed from
the foot of a hill, one hundred yards in front of this humble abode.
The location of dwellings, in that age and country, was determined
almost exclusively by springs. Every other consideration yielded to
this.

Here we took up our abode in a home of our own in the spring of 1841,
as above stated. The farm was afterwards enlarged by other purchases,
and the original still remains in the family. The poverty of the soil,
its tendency to produce briars, its large amount of heavy timber, with
the clearing necessary to be done, made it a place specially favorable
for the cultivation of industry. My father was one of those men who
never ran short of work; he always had plenty of it for himself and the
whole family. Recreation was almost unknown, and we had hardly rest
enough to secure good health. We were not of those who had to resort to
base-ball and foot-ball for exercise; it was ours to combine pleasure
with profit, only the profit was more than the pleasure. There is no
doubt that employment contributes to health of both body and mind. Good
blood, good thought and good morals are born of industry, provided it
be not pushed to the extreme of exhaustion. Children and young people
must have relaxation from toil, that both the physical and mental
powers may recuperate; but not much attention was paid to this
beneficent philosophy in my father's family. Had there been, it might
have been better for at least some of his children in after years.
There is a golden mean in this, as in other things, which parents
sometimes miss in their blind adhesion to a false theory. Rest and
labor are both appointments of God's benevolence.



CHAPTER II.

His First School. The School-house. The Teacher. The Order of Reciting.
Spelling Matches. First Sweetheart. Extremes in Likes and Dislikes.
Fondness for Study. Improvement in Schools.


At the age of about seven I attended my first school. The house was on
my father's farm, a half a mile from our dwelling. It was constructed
of round logs, and had _five_ corners--the fifth was formed at one
end by having shorter logs laid from the corners at an obtuse angle,
like the corner of a rail fence, and meeting in the middle. It was
built up thus to the square, then the logs went straight across,
forming the end for the roof to rest on; consequently this fifth corner
was open, and this was the fire-place. Stones laid with mud mortar were
built in this corner, extending several feet each way, and wood nearly
as long as the breadth of the house would be filled in. The seats were
split logs smoothed on the flat side, and supported on legs put in with
an auger. From these the feet of the children dangled early and late.
There was no support for the back. The house had a dirt floor and a
clap-board roof. Light was let in by cutting away part of two logs in
the end. A wide puncheon was fastened just below this for the writers,
with a seat to correspond. During winter they pasted paper over these
openings, and light for the rest of the school came down the chimney.

The first teacher we had was an old man by the name of Ballou. He lived
on our place, not far from the school-house, and taught for several
years. He was very poor, did poor teaching, and got poor pay. He was
master of only reading, writing and ciphering.

There were no classes in the school, and each one went it
independently, studying what suited his taste and ability. Some read in
the Testament, and others in any book they happened to have. In those
days the rule was that those who got to school first "said first"--that
is, they recited in the order in which they got to the house. This
would sometimes get up a great rivalry, and I have known young men
living two miles away to be at school before daylight. The whole day,
except an hour at noon, was spent in saying lessons. The old teacher
sat in his chair, and the pupils went to him one by one, in the order
in which they got to the house, and said their lessons. When they got
around, the same process was repeated. Sometimes between turns the old
man would take a little nap, and then we all would have some fun. One
more bold than the rest would tickle his bald head or his nose, and to
see him scratching would afford us much amusement.

Each Friday afternoon was spent in a spelling-match. Captains were
chosen, and they would "choose up" till the school was divided into two
classes. Beginning at the head, one of each class would stand up and
spell, till one was "turned down;" then another took his place, and so
on until all on one side were down. I began at this school in the
alphabet, and the second winter I could spell almost every word in
Webster's old Elementary Speller. If provided with a sharp knife, and a
stick on which to whittle, which the kind old man would allow, I could
generally stand most of an afternoon without missing. Strange to say,
after a few years, when I had given myself to the study of other
things, it all went from me, and I have been a poor speller ever since.

In this school I had my first sweetheart--a buxom, jolly good girl,
about six years my senior. To her I wrote my first love letter, and
when it was done its chirography looked as if it had been struck by
lightning; and I had to get an old bachelor friend to help me read it.
Here I am reminded of an early tendency to extremes in my likes and
dislikes. I had a race one morning with a girl whom I saw coming to
school from an opposite direction, each striving to get into the house
first. I clearly went in ahead, but she claimed the race and beat me
out of it. From this on I had an extreme dislike for her. The spring to
which we all had to go for a drink, was about a hundred yards from the
house. The path to it passed through a broken place in a large log that
lay across this path. In this I would never walk, nor would I pass
through the gap, but would always climb over that big log.

These school days were only during winter, after the crop was all
gathered in and before spring work began. After I got large enough to
help in winter work, my attendance was only "semi-occasional." After a
while a better school-house was built, a mile further away, and it was
every way more comfortable, save that we had still the backless slab
seats. Here I went at odd times in winter for several years. I had
acquired a great fondness for reading, devouring everything in the way
of books I could lay my hands upon. Especially I had a great passion
for history, biography, geography, natural philosophy, and the like,
and I let nothing escape me that the country afforded. I had no money
to buy books, and had to depend on borrowing them. I soon went through
arithmetic, grammar, and the history of the United States. This was
more than my paterfamilias recognized as essential to a practical
education, and hence he was not disposed to let me go to school as much
as the other children, who gave themselves no concern about books out
of school. The idea of one's going through grammar, philosophy, or more
than half the arithmetic, "unless he was going to teach," he regarded
as a waste of time. His conception of life and mine were so different
that there was frequently more or less friction. It was decidedly
unpleasant from youth to manhood to be discouraged and opposed in my
one absorbing passion for obtaining an education. My mother sympathized
with me, but could not help me. The first dollar I ever made I spent
for a book, and for this purpose I saved my hard-earned pennies.
Midnight often found me poring over this book by the light of kindling
prepared for the purpose. This was opposed; and thus the struggle went
on during my minority.

I can not forbear, before closing this short chapter upon my school
life, to allude to the great improvement in the matter of common
schools since I was a boy. My native State, though sadly behind many of
her younger sisters, has made some progress in this direction, and I
can but hope this is only an earnest of what is to come. In a few
favored localities, chiefly the cities, there is ample provision made
for the education of the children of the people, but in the country
districts much remains to be done before we are up with the demands of
the age in regard to the comfort of the pupils as well as the
facilities for the prosecution of their studies. We need more and
better school-houses, better furniture, and more attractive
surroundings. Well qualified and earnest teachers are not yet as thick
as blackberries in Kentucky. When as much attention is bestowed on
these as on jockeys, and on our boys as on our horses, we shall be both
richer and better.



CHAPTER III.

His Religious Experience. Tries to be a Methodist. Hopes to become a
Preacher. Boy Preaching. Attends a Sunday-school. "Chaws" Tobacco. Goes
to Love Feast. Mourners' Bench Experience. Is Puzzled and Disgusted.


My parents were Methodists, as were their ancestors on both sides. My
mother was uniformly religious, but not fussy about it. I have seen her
intensely happy, but never heard her shout. Her religion was a deep,
smooth, current without fluctuation. My father was religious more by
spells, but still he never went to extremes, and could never "get
religion" at the altar, in the Methodist fashion. This lifelong failure
of his discouraged him, causing him at times to become somewhat
skeptical and indifferent. But he died, rejoicing in the faith of
Christ as held by the Methodist Church.

When about ten years of age I joined the Methodist Episcopal Church,
South. A great revival was in progress at La Grange, and over one
hundred persons united with the church. I enjoyed the services, and
continued to do so for a number of years. Often in those early times I
rode to meeting at surrounding churches and private dwellings on
horseback behind my mother. I still remember, as vividly as if it were
but yesterday, the texts and treatment of many of the sermons I heard.
In later years I have frequently thought of the fallacies the preachers
imposed upon us, and, I charitably believe, upon themselves, in these
sermons, but which neither we nor they could detect for want of correct
scriptural knowledge. The thought that I should one day become a
preacher impressed me, and it clung to me for years. When afterwards I
grew wild and wicked, this impression possessed me, and many a time,
when my good wife would rebuke me for my wickedness, I would say,
"Never mind, dear; I'll be a preacher yet." I had a high regard for
preachers, and from early life was fond of their company; and since I
have become one myself, the society of good, faithful men of God brings
me as near heaven as I shall ever be in the flesh.

It was a common thing with me, when I came home from meeting, to get up
one of my own by gathering the children together and preaching to them
the sermons I had heard; and while these were not verbally correct,
there was in them the substance of what the preachers had delivered. I
would sing and pray, and go through the whole performance. I improvised
a little pulpit, and had a church after my own notion; I was a great
plagiarist, and in this, too, I copied after some others.

I attended the first Sunday-school I ever heard of; it was conducted by
Floyd Wellman, a gentleman who afterwards became a prominent and
honored citizen of Louisville. Sunday-schools were then poor things, as
I fear many of them are yet. Little question-books, with the answers
supplied, and reading-books, mostly about angelic boys and girls who
died of early piety, furnished the staple of our reading, while but
little of the Scriptures was taught, or thought about.

To chew tobacco seemed to me to be manly; so to let the people see I
was thus far developed, I prepared me a rough twist of "long green;"
this I stuck in my pantaloons pocket, for the occasion, and when
everything was propitious in the Sunday-school, I drew out the twist
and bit off a "chaw." It raised quite a laugh, in which the
superintendent himself joined; and this ended for life my chewing
tobacco to be seen of men.

I often went with my parents to "love feast." At the first of these
which I attended I had an experience of my own. The light-bread was cut
into slips about two inches long and a half an inch wide and thick.
Some of these were then divided into small pieces. On the plate which
was passed around were two long pieces, and I concluded that if there
was any virtue in the thing it would be enhanced by my taking a long
one; but when I discovered that all the rest had taken but a bite my
philosophy failed, and I hid the remainder where Rachel hid the gods of
her father Laban.

When about fifteen years of age the Methodists had a big revival at
Mount Tabor, a neighboring country church. In this meeting a great many
of my friends and companions were "getting religion" at the altar of
prayer. I became intensely desirous of the same blessing, and in great
anxiety and hopefulness I went to the altar. Day after day did I go,
but only to be disappointed. Every time some would "get through," and
there would be great rejoicing, till only one young man and myself were
left. The whole power of the church was then concentrated on us, but to
no purpose. In this extremity I began to reason about it as I had not
done before. I had been taught that "God was no respecter of persons;
but that in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh
righteousness, is accepted with him." My soul ever recoiled from the
idea of His decreeing some men to salvation and others to damnation,
irrespective of their own will and conduct. Here, now, I was as
helpless as a stone till God should do this work of grace for me. Why
would he send down the Holy Spirit and convert one on my right, another
on my left, till the "bench" was vacant, and not convert me? The
preachers were praying for Him to do it; my father and mother were
praying earnestly for it; the whole church were pleading with Him, and
yet He would not do it. I knew I was a sinner; that I wanted salvation;
that I was sincere, earnest as the others could be: but all this
availed nothing. The preachers tried to explain the failure on the
ground that I was still clinging to the world and my own righteousness;
that I had not given my heart wholly to God, etc. This I knew to be
false. I concluded that if a poor, penitent, agonizing sinner with all
his prayers and pleadings, with the whole church earnestly coöperating,
could not induce God to save him, he might just as well be decreed to
damnation from all eternity. With these reflections I left the
mourners' bench in disgust, and ever since I have had for it an
inexpressible contempt. Time and observation have confirmed me in this
feeling; and while I cherish a sincere respect for those who in
ignorance think it is a divine arrangement, and that in resorting to it
they are obeying a command of God, I have none for those who, knowing
better, still use it as a means of conversion. As often employed by
professional evangelists, there is so much of clap-trap that it must
bring the whole subject of religion into contempt with sensible people.
It is amazing to me that, in view of its entire lack of Scripture
precept or example, the light and knowledge of this day, and its
frequent failures, it, and the whole system of which it is an essential
part, are not laid aside.

Having been taught that Methodism and Christianity were identical, and
having completely lost faith in the former, it was natural enough that
I should become skeptical as to the latter. Only a lingering suspicion
that after all they might be different, saved me from hopeless
infidelity; and had I not in after years learned such to be the case, I
should have lived and died in rebellion against God.



CHAPTER IV.

Fun and Mischief. His Little Cousin and the "Gnats." The Aurora
Borealis. A Bumble-bee Scrape. Another Bee Scrape. Justification by
Faith alone. Readiness to Fight. Love of Justice. No Surrender.


When a boy, I was as full of fun and mischief as an egg is of meat, and
I have never got rid of it. With a younger brother and a neighbor boy
of my own age, equally mischievous with myself, there was hardly a
thing in the way of fun and frolic that we were not continually into.
Hunting rabbits was our chief sport, and, when we got larger, coons,
'possums and the like at night. There was not a tree of any
peculiarity, or a hole in the ground, for miles around, that we did not
know all about. We knew, also, every fruit tree, from the apple to the
black-haw or persimmon in the same territory, and the time they were
ready for company; and we never failed to pay our respects to them all
in due time. I would not mention many of the bad things of my early
life; but that is the way the Bible does with its heroes, and the Bible
is always a safe guide to follow.

About all the money we made in our boyhood days was from the sale of
nuts and the flesh and skins of the animals we caught during the fall
and winter. This was my way of getting books, maps, etc., to help me in
my studies. I was the recognized leader in all the mischief we did, and
many prophecies were made that I should one day be hanged, and in this
anticipation my father fully shared. My younger brother and I were
constantly playing practical jokes on each other, and often upon
others. We never became offended, though the pranks were sometimes
exceedingly rough; but we were always watching an opportunity to "get
even." I will relate a few as samples, while others are too bad to
tell.

On one occasion some cousins and their children visited us from Shelby
county. They were considered quite wealthy for that time. Their little
boy was dressed in very fine clothes, at least, in our estimation, and
we concluded he was putting on airs. We thought we would do him a
valuable service by taking him down a little, so we asked him if he had
ever seen a singular kind of gnat, which we described. He had not. We
proposed to show him a fine lot--a big nest of them. We affirmed that
they were nice, harmless things to play with. So we went forth to see
the gnats. We got him to the nest and stirred them up, and in a few
minutes the innocent, unsuspecting boy was covered with yellow jackets.
Of course, he ran to the house screaming, and they had a time in
getting them off of him. He was badly stung, but we made it appear that
we had gone down there to fight them, which was a favorite pastime with
us, and that he got too near the nest. Thus we escaped a well-merited
whipping.

About the same time in life my younger brother and I caught a rabbit
and dressed it for breakfast. It was Saturday afternoon, and father and
mother had gone to her father's, some six miles away, to stay till the
next evening. That night the aurora borealis was unusually bright, and
as the excitement of Millerism had not died away, there was much talk
of the world's coming to an end. My oldest sister, Mary, was getting
supper ready and was greatly alarmed. She would go out and watch the
sky, and then go back to see about the supper. Finally I said, "Mary,
do you really think the world will come to an end before morning?" "I
do believe it will," said she. "Then," said I, "_we must have the
rabbit for supper_." I had no notion of losing my rabbit by such a
trifling circumstance as that.

Later in life, when old enough to work in the harvest field, we had a
neighbor who was very "close," and we never had any fancy for him. He
was always boasting of his ability to work with bees. One year he had a
large harvest, and many hands employed, and we were helping him. One
day we told him we had found a fine bee tree which could be cut down in
a few minutes, and that if he would go and take the honey he might have
it all except what we could eat. He was delighted with the proposal, so
after supper a number of us started for the bee tree, a mile and a half
from his house, in a dense forest. He had several buckets prepared to
secure a large amount of honey. When we began to chop, the bees began
to roar, and our friend was frantic with delight. Soon the tree fell,
and he "waded in" with his axe and buckets to get the luscious spoil.
As he went in we went out, and soon he discovered himself in a big
bumble-bees' nest alone with all his buckets, etc., a mile and a half
from home! We saw no more of him that night, and did not care to meet
him next day.

This reminds me of another bee scrape, in which my father figured
largely. He prided himself on being able to handle bees as so many
flies. On a cool, drizzly day we cut a bee tree on the farm. I was
wearing a brown jeans sack coat. This I laid aside while chopping. When
the tree fell the bees swarmed forth in great numbers, and my father
stalked in with his axe, chipping and cutting the limbs, preparatory to
chopping for the honey, and was as indifferent as if surrounded only by
gnats. We stood at a safe distance. Soon he came out with a trifle less
indifference than he went in with, picking the bees out of his hair
with both hands. They had literally settled on his head and were
stinging him furiously. He came running to us to fight them off. I
grabbed up my coat, and with both hands struck him over the head. A
large jack knife, very heavy, was in one of the pockets, and this
struck him on the opposite side of the head and came near felling him
to the ground. We fought the bees off the best we could, but he was
terribly stung. This was the last of his working with bees as with
flies.

My father was a firm believer in the doctrine of justification by faith
alone. All those passages of Scripture that connect justification or
salvation with faith, without mentioning anything else as a condition,
he had at his tongue's end. His argument was, whatever may be mentioned
elsewhere, here salvation is promised on the condition of faith, and
nothing else is in the text. With all this I had become perfectly
familiar, and always had a suspicion that there was a fallacy in it
some where, though I could not exactly expose it. We were clearing a
piece of new ground in April, about the time the spring fever sets in,
and my younger brother and I always "had it bad." It was a Monday
morning, and father was going to La Grange to attend court. At
breakfast he gave us very particular instructions about our work--what
to do and how to do it--and a feature emphasized was that we were to
keep at it. It was getting quite dry, and when he had started to town
he hallooed back and said, "Boys, I want you to watch the fire to-day
and not let it get out." "All right," we responded. His two directions,
perhaps not an hour apart, reminded me of his theology, and I resolved
at once to test its validity when weighed in his own scales. So we went
out to the clearing, lay down under the shade of a tree, and "watched
the fire" all day! Having returned, he asked us how we had got along.
We replied, "Finely," that we had done what he told us; but when he
came to "view the landscape o'er," we had to give an account for the
deeds done in the body, or, rather, not done. I told him that his
specific instruction was to watch the fire. "But," said he, "I told you
before that, that you were to do the work." "Yes," I replied, "but the
last time you said anything about it you did not allude to the work;
but only to watch the fire. There was no work in the text." However, he
was by no means disposed to look upon that as favorably as upon
justification by faith only, which rests on the same principle. Still
it opened his eyes to a fallacy in his argument that he had not seen
before.

I generally lived in peace and good will with all the boys in the
neighborhood, but a few times in my life feeling imposed on, or that
some one else was, I got into fights, and always with those older and
stronger than myself. I had learned something of the secret of success
in that line from what I had heard said of my father. This often gave
me a victory quite unlooked for. I would fight the best friend I had in
the world if he imposed on one unable to cope with him. I had a
companion much stronger than I, and inclined to be overbearing. On one
occasion, at a corn husking, he tried to force a fight on a boy smaller
than himself. When I saw he was quite determined about it, while the
other boy was trying to avoid it, I said, "Jim, you and I are good
friends. I have nothing against you in the world. I like you, but you
can't fight that boy. If you fight any body you will have to fight me.
I don't want any quarrel with you, nor do I want to hurt you, but if
nothing but a fight will do you, that's just the way it has to be
done." When he saw I was in earnest, the matter was dropped, and our
friendship continued.

I was severely tried on one occasion. My older brother had a falling
out with a neighbor, and we three were alone in the woods. I had a
dislike for the man, as much as my brother had. He was boastful,
bigoted and disagreeable. But in this particular case I saw clearly
that my brother was in the wrong, I felt compelled, therefore, to take
sides with the other man. At this my brother was deeply offended, and
it took him a long time to get over it. He did not see his wrong, and
thought my conduct very strange and unnatural, especially as I did not
like the man. I deplored this, but could not yield the principle of
holding justice superior to persons.

One of my difficulties was so peculiar that I will recount it. It was
in the winter, and the ground was frozen deep. The day was bright, and
on the south hillsides the ground had thawed to the depth of two or
three inches. Several boys were together, and one of them several years
older than I. He was a son of one of our tenants, and entirely too
proud for one in his condition. He was imposing on my younger brother,
and I gave him to understand he must not do that. With this he turned
upon me. We were upon a south hillside, under a large beech tree, and
the ground was thawed on top and frozen beneath. About the first pass I
slipped on a root concealed in the mud, and fell on my back, with my
shoulders wedged between two projecting roots and my head against the
tree. I was utterly powerless. After pommeling me a while, he proposed
to let me up if I would say "enough." This I declined to do. Then he
would renew the operation, and then the proposition. The sun was three
hours high, no one interfered, and I insisted that they should not.
Sometimes he would lie upon me and talk for half an hour or more; he
would argue the case, remind me of my helplessness, and that it would
be death to lie there on the frozen ground till night. Then when his
advice all failed, he would renew hostilities. Thus it continued till
sundown. As the sun got low he changed his proposal. He would now let
me up if I would promise to make friends, and not fight him. This I
also declined. Finally, when he saw that nothing would avail, he gave
me a few parting salutes, and, springing to his feet, ran away. Before
I could get up he had such a start that I could not overtake him. For
some time I watched for a chance to pay him back, but he kept out of my
sight; and soon after his folks moved away, and thus the matter ended.

From my infancy it has been my disposition to stick to my convictions
till I saw I was in the wrong. I can not say that I am obstinate,
though it may have that appearance to others. I never could yield a
point for policy's sake, though my adherence to my convictions has cost
me a good deal. This led me early in life to be careful in coming to a
conclusion, and I have always admired Davy Crockett's motto, "Be sure
you're right, and then go ahead." I commend this homemade philosophy to
all who may read this chapter.



CHAPTER V.

Given to Abstraction of Thought. Cases in Point. Opinion of Debating
Societies. Perseverance. Consumption. Endurance. More Comfortable
Home. Death of his Father. Love of Fashionable Amusements. Meets his
Future Wife. Is Married. Tribute to his Wife. Her Father and Mother.


During early life I was much given to abstraction of thought, and I am
still down with the same disease. From morning till night, between the
plow-handles or swinging the maul, I was absorbed in reflection. My
reading and other studies raised many questions that I sought to find
out. Natural philosophy and the elements of astronomy were subjects of
peculiar delight, and would cause me to become oblivious of all
surroundings. This frequently got me into trouble. It vexed my father
very much that my mind was not more on my work, and he had but little
patience with me. When about the house I would often realize that I had
been told to do something, and I would start at once about it, and
perchance when I came to myself I would find that I was at the barn or
spring, wholly forgetful of what I had been told to do. On one occasion
I was told to go to the lot and catch a horse and come to the crib, and
my father would put the sack on for me, and I was to go to mill. I went
and caught the horse, got on and went, but when I arrived the mill was
in ashes; it was just through burning. On my return I saw that my
father was not as serene as a May morning. But not till he spoke of it
did I discover that I had gone off without the sack. I at once taxed my
eloquence to give a glowing account of the fire, and thus divert his
attention from my neglect.

Many a time have I acted ridiculously on account of this absorption of
thought. While at Eminence College, there was a public exhibition one
evening in the chapel. A few minutes before it began I went into the
room of Prof. Henry Giltner, just across the hall from the chapel, and
here I saw McGarvey's "Commentary on Acts" for the first time. I
thought I would look into it for a moment before the exercises should
begin; and that was the last I thought of the exhibition till some one
came into the room just before its close, hunting for me.

One more instance of this nature must suffice. About 1872, I was
holding a very successful meeting at Burksville, on the Cumberland
river, and while I was preaching one night there came up a terrific
thunderstorm, with vivid lightning and hard rain. A young man occupied
a front seat who had just been reclaimed from a life of sin, and who is
now a preacher. I had a faint recollection of seeing him leave the
house. He had become alarmed at the storm and left, but I knew nothing
of the confusion till the services closed.

Every fall and winter we would have debating societies at the
school-house, and at these, men of considerable attainments would be
present and participate--teachers, preachers, and lawyers. In these I
took a deep interest. My reading enabled me to become well posted on
most of the questions discussed; and by careful preparation I soon came
to be recognized as a good debater for one of my age. These discussions
were of great advantage to me, and I am clearly of opinion that
debating societies, when properly conducted, can be made useful to
aspiring young men.

From childhood my under front teeth passed up on the outside, and, when
a good sized boy, I concluded that that was not just the right thing,
and that I would bring them into their proper place. By an effort in
drawing back my under jaw, I could barely get the edges to so pass as
to make a pressure of any value. But with this slight purchase the
operation was continued from day to day, till the work was
accomplished. The teeth became very sore from pressure, and the muscles
of the jaw very tired from the unnatural strain, but in about ten days
it was all over, and the job complete for life.

Another case required much greater perseverance. My older brother was
very hollow-chested, and died of consumption; several others of the
family were afflicted in like manner, and met the same fate. When about
sixteen, I had strong tendencies in that direction. My chest was
becoming "hollow," and I decided upon an effort to counteract it. To
this end I slept on my back with no pillow under my head, and a
good-sized one under my chest. I would awake of a morning feeling
almost too dignified to bend forward. This I kept up for two years,
holding myself erect during the day, till my chest expanded and the
threatening trouble was overcome. But for that I should have been in my
grave long ago. The simple fact is, I have been fighting consumption
since I was sixteen years of age.

While I was never robust in health or appearance, I was exceedingly
tough, and had great power of endurance. One of my physicians told me
long ago that in all his practice he had never seen anything that would
compare with it. This enabled me to do as much work as men of much
greater strength. In those days reapers were generally unknown in our
country, and the grain was all "cradled." At this I was an adept, never
meeting any one that could excel me. The same was true of jumping and
running foot races. Hundreds of men could no doubt beat me, but I never
happened to meet them. I kept up these exercises till I left college.

When I was about twelve years of age my father built a large and
comfortable house on another part of his farm. It was of hewed logs,
and a story and a half high, with a large kitchen and dining-room,
porches, etc. It was subsequently weather-boarded, and it is still a
comfortable, commodious dwelling, owned by my mother, who never left it
till her children all married and went to themselves. Father died of
typhoid fever in 1860, in the fifty-third year of his age. He left my
mother in comparatively easy circumstances, with nearly three hundred
acres of land, plenty of stock, and a considerable amount of money on
interest. By industry and economy on the part of himself and the whole
family this property was accumulated, and he died in the assurance that
with prudence on our part we could all make a respectable living. My
mother now makes her home with her oldest daughter, Mary Crenshaw, wife
of Mr. O. B. Crenshaw, a few miles north of Simpsonville, Shelby
county, Ky. She waits in confident expectation that before long she too
will depart to be with Christ and His redeemed, where the families of
his saints will be reunited for ever.

After I grew to be a young man, I became very fond of fashionable
amusements; I liked dancing, and went far and near to engage in the
fascinating exercise. I gave a great deal of attention to dress;
priding myself on being a gentleman; hence I found a welcome in the
best society. In those years of wildness and wickedness, some things I
was careful to avoid. I never learned to play cards, to gamble, or to
tolerate the company of immodest women. For the latter I had an
invincible repugnance that grew stronger with my years.

In the summer of 1855, while harvesting for her uncle, I first met at
the dinner-table Miss Jennie Maddox, the lady whom I afterwards
married. I looked as rough and unprepossessing that day as she ever saw
me afterwards. I was as brown as a Florida "cracker," and my dress was
anything but elegant. Had I anticipated the forming of such a
captivating acquaintance, I should have made some preparation, but I
was caught, and I had to make the best of it. We were married September
11, 1856; I was twenty years and a half old; she ten months younger.
From that time to this she has been a loving, faithful wife, prudent in
all things, industrious and frugal, caring for me and her children;
and, above all, a consistent disciple of Jesus Christ, whom she had
obeyed several years before our marriage. When we first met I thought
her very handsome; she was rather small, had auburn hair, blue eyes and
fair skin.

    "And to-day you are fairer to me, Jennie,
    Than when you and I were young."

As to myself, I was six feet one inch in height, weighed a hundred and
forty pounds, had brown eyes, and was, and am still, of a
nervous-bilious temperament. My complexion was then, as now, very dark.

My wife's father, G. W. Maddox, was an elder in the Pleasant Hill
church, Oldham county, Ky., near which he lived. The church is about
two miles south-east of Baird's Station, on the Louisville & Lexington
Railroad. He was a man of a firm logical mind, good general
information, and more intelligent in the Scriptures than any man I ever
met, outside of the ministry. I have heard several preachers make the
same remark. He was, however, a timid man, and it was difficult to get
much out of him in public. He began too late in life, and had no
training in that direction. But he was a very popular man, both in and
out of the church, and his counsel was generally taken. His wife was a
timid, unassuming, good woman, very conscientious and religious. They
reared a family of six girls and one boy, all of whom obeyed the gospel
in good time. I myself baptized several of them.

My father-in-law and I soon became very much attached to each other,
fond of each other's company, and I loved him as I loved few others.
His fine information, philosophic Christian spirit and wonderful
self-control first won my admiration, and this ripened into the
strongest friendship. He, more than all other men, caused me to see the
error of my way. We spent the first winter of our married life in his
pious home, and this gave us much time for investigation and
conversation upon the subject of religion.



CHAPTER VI.

Goes to Housekeeping. Discussions with Mr. Maddox. Attends Meeting. Is
Baptized by William Tharp. Double Damages for an Old Horse. Begins
Trading. Moves to Floydsburg. Description of the Place.


In the spring of 1857 we moved to a place on Currie's Fork, near
Centerfield, about a mile and a half from my former home and a little
farther from hers. So it will be seen I married only a few miles from
home. It may seem a little strange that we grew up in the same
neighborhood, and knew nothing of each other till a year before we were
married. But I rarely went to her church, and she as rarely went
anywhere else. Our religious proclivities led us in different
directions, and into different society. I had been taught to look upon
"Campbellism" as the most miserable of all heresies; and till I began
to visit at the Maddox house I was seldom in the company of "that
deluded people."

After moving to ourselves, we went nearly every Lord's day to the home
of my wife's father, and this for several reasons: she wanted to attend
her church, and this took her virtually home: this she enjoyed, and so
did I. The old folks could not visit us on that day without missing
church, and this they would not do. Mr. Maddox and I still engaged in
the investigation of Methodism, "Campbellism" and Infidelity. I could
feel the ground gradually giving way under me, but I was resolved upon
thoroughly testing every inch, and not yielding till I should become
satisfied as to the truth of all his positions. I would therefore study
all week and arrange my arguments with the utmost care, and when the
time seemed propitious I would present them as forcibly as I could. He
would never say a word till I was through; then he would say, "Well!
now let us test that." Then he would very calmly and pleasantly pick
the thing all to pieces, till I could see nothing but shreds. With a
mere touch, my carefully built structure would tumble like a cob house.
Thus the work went on for years. In the meantime I attended meeting
with my wife nearly every Lord's day, and heard much good preaching.
Every important point in the sermon would be afterward investigated,
and, like the noble Bereans, I searched the Scriptures daily, "to see
whether those things were so."

During these years several successful meetings were held at the church,
all of which I closely attended. One of these was conducted by John A.
Brooks, and another by the lamented Simeon King. At the latter I came
very near yielding to Christ, but persuaded myself that all was not yet
ready. I delighted to see others obey the Lord, and enjoy the blessings
of his religion, but I could not exactly see the way clear for myself.
In spite of a more enlightened judgment, I would find some of my old
erroneous notions clinging to me. I had a high regard for the church,
and loved the company of its good members, and only a supreme
carefulness, born of former blunders, kept me in disobedience.

In May, 1861, William Tharp and Wallace Cox were holding a meeting, and
at this I confessed Christ, and was immersed by Bro. Tharp. My doubts
as to the truth of the Christian religion and the way of salvation
therein, had all been removed; and to this day not a shadow of a doubt
has crossed my mind as to either. I now experienced a peace of
conscience that I had not known since my thought was first disturbed in
regard to the right way of the Lord.

I farmed for three years after marriage. The last year, we lived on the
railroad just below Buckner's Station, and while here I had a little
experience with the railroad company that teaches a lesson worth
learning. I had an old horse, of not much value, but useful to me; he
got out upon the road, and was killed by a passing train. I spoke of
going to Louisville, to see if I could not get pay for it. The
neighbors discouraged the idea, saying it would be useless. They cited
a number of instances where stock had been killed, and in no case had
any one obtained damages. But I went, found the Superintendent, and to
him I made my speech of about three minutes' length. At its conclusion,
he asked me if seventy-five dollars would satisfy me; and on my
replying that it would, he handed me the money. He then remarked that
the reason people got nothing in such cases, was because of the spirit
in which they came and the way they talked about it. I left him feeling
quite pleasant, for it was more than double the animal was worth. This
was before I became an adept in Christian ethics.

In the fall of 1859 I began trading, having obtained an interest in a
country store at a little place called Centerfield. We moved to the
place, and I began to haul country produce to Louisville. I had a team
which was said to be the best that came into the city, and I made
weekly trips, bringing back merchandise. This I continued for three
years, without the least regard to weather, and with scarcely a failure
during the whole time. This employment threw me into rough associations
in the city every week. Many engaged in like business from Kentucky and
Indiana stopped at the same tavern, and most of them were given to
dissipation. At home it was predicted that with my inclination to
wildness this would finish me; and while truth compels me to confess
that I often had "a jolly good time" with "the boys," the excess of
wickedness I saw had an opposite effect, and I came out at last a
preacher.

The next year we moved to Floydsburg, sixteen miles from Louisville,
because, as I did not stay in the store, but did the hauling back and
forth, it was a better location for us. It is an old town, in which my
maternal grandfather lived before I was born, in which I spent much
time before I was old enough to work, and around which cluster the
earliest memories of life. It was once a place of large business, on
the main road from Henry and adjacent counties to Louisville, and in
ante-railroad times a large amount of wagoning was done through the
place. At certain seasons great droves of cattle and hogs were driven
through it, and everything was lively; besides, it had a good trade
with the country around. But the Louisville & Lexington Railroad, which
runs within a mile of the town, killed it as dead as an Egyptian mummy,
because all this through business was taken by the railroad, and the
surrounding trade went to the stations or to the city. It is,
therefore, a quiet, undisturbed little place to live in, if one is not
dependent upon making his expenses there. Most of the old citizens,
business men of its prosperous days, have passed away, and the town has
the appearance of being at their funeral.

As far back as I recollect, and I know not how much farther, it had in
it one church, built of stone, small, and with a roof as sharp as the
best presentations of Methodism that were ever set forth in it. About
1850, this ancient structure was replaced by one of brick, of good
size, but poorly furnished. This is the only church that has ever been
in the place; and while the people have been unusually quiet and moral,
they have never been burdened with religion. There is a graveyard in
the rear of the house, opened, perhaps, when the first building was
erected, and in this silent spot sleep many of my friends and
relatives. I have never thought it made much difference where one is
buried--and in this I suppose I agree with most Protestants--but it is
one proof of the improved taste of the age to see the care now taken of
our cemeteries. Such places were unknown when I was a boy and where I
lived, and even yet, outside of our cities and larger towns, they are
too rare. Every village should have a neat and well-kept cemetery, to
take the place of the neglected old burying-grounds where,

    "Each in his narrow cell forever laid,
    The rude forefathers of the hamlet sleep."



CHAPTER VII.

Tries to Become a Politician. Fails. Last Act as a Politician. Tries to
Join the Southern Army. Fails Again. His First Appointment. Feeling of
Responsibility. His Plan. Text. Analysis of Sermon. Buys a Family
Bible. Rules of Life.


When I obeyed the Saviour, the brethren urged me to begin at once to
preach the gospel. I had been accustomed to making political speeches,
and public addresses of different kinds, and they thought I could just
as easily preach a sermon as to make a speech on any other subject. But
I was not thus inclined. I had political aspirations, and was not
disposed to give them up. My idea was, that I could have a good
influence on public men, in conversation and association, by being a
faithful and consistent Christian. I regarded this as a field in which
the influence of Christianity was much needed; and I decided to make
this a specialty, while leading a public political life. But it did not
take long for me to learn that there was at least a strong probability
that the influence would go the other way. However successfully some
men may be politicians and Christians both, I soon discovered that,
with my temperament, the two things would not work harmoniously
together. I concluded that if I continued in politics I would be a very
sorry kind of Christian, if one at all. For a thing of this kind I had
a deep repugnance. The issue, then, as it appeared to me, was finally
forced upon me: Shall I give up politics or Christianity? Of course I
was not compelled to give up Christianity in theory, but I felt that I
would virtually do so in practice; and with me the difference between
the two was hardly worth considering. While I felt that it was a great
sacrifice, in a worldly point of view, to give up the golden dreams of
a brilliant future, I decided in favor of Christ and the Bible. I shall
never cease to thank God for the decision.

My last act in political life was attending, as a delegate, a State
Convention at Frankfort, in August, 1861. This was, in some respects, a
miserable affair, and I became thoroughly disgusted with politics and
politicians, such as seemed to be pushing to the front, and crowding
modesty and decency and honesty out of sight. I decided that that kind
of association, that kind of companionship in the profession, that kind
of trickery and treachery as food for daily thought, however successful
one might be, was disgusting and debasing. I went home from the
convention determined upon a clear cut-loose from the whole concern.

During the convention, Gen. Wm. Preston remarked in a speech that in
one year from that day, "the stars and bars" would be waving from the
dome of that capitol. In twelve months to a day, I went to Frankfort to
see the Board of the Christian Education Society, about assisting me in
college. The railroad was not in use, and I went by way of the
Shelbyville pike. When I got in sight of the city, I saw "the stars and
bars" waving from the dome of the capitol! Gen. Kirby Smith had
possession.

When the brethren learned of my determination to give up politics, they
renewed their solicitations in regard to my preaching. But I had become
intensely concerned about the cause of the Southern Confederacy, and
longed to take a part in what I then considered her struggle for
independence and justice. In my misguided zeal, I regarded this a duty
that patriotism would not allow me to exchange for anything till it was
performed. Then, if spared, my life-work should be begun. A peculiar
circumstance, greatly lamented at the time, kept me out of the Southern
army. But I have long regarded it as a special providence of God.

I was an officer in a large cavalry company under the training of Col.
J. W. Griffith. He had fought through the Mexican war, was an
intelligent man, and a good soldier. He also fought through the late
war, and was several times promoted. We had been drilling for some
weeks, and the time was set for our departure. I had a good deal of
unsettled business at Louisville, and went to the city to settle it up.
During my absence the Federal authorities of Louisville were apprised,
in some way, of the movements and purposes of our men, and two
companies of cavalry were sent out to intercept them. Our men were
notified of this, and went twenty-four hours in advance of the set
time. Of all this I knew nothing, and when I got home the company was
gone. I knew not which way it had taken, for our Colonel kept his own
counsel. When night came I left home, determined upon an earnest effort
to find the trail of the company and follow them. Twice I came near
being caught by the soldiers in pursuit, and after a night's fruitless
search, I was compelled to return disappointed. I had not another
opportunity, and ere long I gave up the vain idea. But for that
disappointment I should have gone into the Southern army; and what the
result would have been will remain a secret till the day in which the
results of all contingencies are known. But it is highly improbable
that I should have ever become a preacher of the gospel of the grace of
God. Thank Him for the providence that overruled me!

I finally yielded to the importunities of the brethren, and allowed
them to make an appointment. This was in May, 1862, one year after
making the confession. The meeting was announced two weeks ahead. It
was a fine day, and through curiosity a great crowd assembled. I had
never been in the pulpit before, nor made any remarks in the church
except to pray. The brethren had a Bible-class every Lord's day when
there was no preaching, and no public speaking was indulged in except a
few remarks at the Lord's table, by one of the elders. Though I was
accustomed to speak in public, I felt a responsibility in this matter
that I never felt before. I decided upon three things as insuring
success, or at least resulting in no harm:

    1. To select a plain, practical subject, on which I would not be
    likely to indulge in false teaching.

    2. To thoroughly study the _subject_, rather than the _sermon_.

    3. To make myself thoroughly familiar with the analysis of the
    subject, and then talk about it, without relying upon memory as
    to language.

Relying on memory has been the cause of ten thousand failures, and has
taken all the "snap" out of ten thousand more, that were considered a
success. The intellect never leaps and bounds with vivacity when it is
chained by verbal memory.

I selected for my text Matt. xvi. 24: "Then said Jesus unto his
disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and
take up his cross, and follow me." I went into the pulpit alone,
"introduced," as the saying is, for myself, and then spoke for forty
minutes. While I felt embarrassed by a sense of responsibility, there
was no confusion of thought in regard to the subject; hence no
difficulty in its presentation. As it was my first sermon, the analysis
of it may be of some interest.

I called attention, first, to the universal offer of salvation: "If
_any man_." Second, to the freedom of the will: "If any man _will_."
Third, personal responsibility involved in the foregoing. Fourth,
self-denial as a condition of eternal life. Fifth, the nature and
necessity of cross-bearing. Sixth, examples of self-denial and
cross-bearing on the part of Christ and the apostles.

The church in which I preached my first sermon was the same in which I
made the confession, and near which I was reared. For it I did my first
regular monthly preaching, while in college, and in it held a number of
successful protracted meetings, one annually, during the early years of
my ministry. The old church is dear to me yet; its old members are my
devoted friends, and I delight to visit them when Providence permits.

Immediately after obeying the Saviour I bought a family Bible and a
pocket Testament; not that we had none before, but they were not such
as suited my convenience. At home and abroad, in the city or the
country, in the store or on the road, I had my Testament. As I drove
all day along the highway, I would look at it occasionally to see how a
certain passage read, and then study its meaning. I have never read the
Bible largely, as some do, but I have studied it every day since I knew
the way of life, unless I was too sick to have anything in mind. I have
studied, doubtless, a hundred times as much without the book in my
hands as with it. The idea that one can study the Bible only as he has
opportunity to sit down with the book in his hands, is a great mistake.
Hence many people complain of having no time to study the Bible, when
the fact is they have nearly all their time, if they only knew it. I
early learned to study the Bible at any time or under any
circumstances, and the advantages of this to me have been beyond
estimation.

As soon as I got my family Bible, I wrote on a flyleaf a few simple

    RULES OF LIFE.

    1. To study this book carefully and prayerfully every day.

    2. To try to understand its teaching, regardless of the theories
    and traditions of men.

    3. To make it the man of my counsel, the source and limit of my
    knowledge of divine things, and to speak on such matters only as it
    speaks.

    4. To measure myself in everything by this standard, and bring my
    life, in all respects, in subjection to its divine authority.

    5. To strive to grow in grace, and in the knowledge of the truth,
    that I may become strong in the Lord, be a blessing to my fellow
    men, and at last obtain a home in heaven.

These rules, in some respects, have been closely observed; especially
the first three. While in the others I have fallen immeasurably short,
I feel that, upon the whole, the rules have been of great advantage to
me.



CHAPTER VIII.

Resolves to Go to College. Friends Oppose. Wife Decides It. Hard Living
and Hard Work. Impaired Health. Preaches for His Home Church.
Father-in-law Dies. "Frank, Be a True Man." House Robbed. "Scraps."
College Incidents. First Pay for Preaching. Holds Several Meetings.
Dishonest Preacher.


When I fully decided to devote my life to the ministry of the Word, I
felt an overwhelming desire for a better education, in order to do the
kind of work for the Master that his cause demanded. I had a good deal
of general information that I had acquired through years of reading and
study, but I was wholly ignorant of a number of things that I felt to
be necessary to reliable, satisfactory work for the Lord. I wanted to
devote my life to study, and I needed assistance in laying the
foundation on which to build in after years. I decided, therefore, to
quit business and go to college. This was vigorously opposed by all my
friends. The church insisted that I had education enough, and that all
I lacked was practice, to make me as good a preacher as there was need
to be. My relatives opposed it, because they could not see the
necessity, and it promised to wife and children only starvation. I had
had some reverses, and had got just fairly square with the world. The
flush war times had just come on. Trade was booming, money abundant and
prices going up. I was now prepared to make money as I had never made
it before, by five to one. To quit business just at that time, cut off
all source of revenue, and go with a wife and three children to
college, with but little money to start on, did, indeed, in one sense,
look like absolute recklessness. Indeed, some of the brethren thought I
was actually going crazy.

It was then argued that I should at least defer it a few years, till I
should make some money, which was then easily done, and thus provide
for the wants of my family while going through college. This looked
very plausible; but I was deeply impressed with the blunders I had
already made in trying to be a politician, then a soldier, and not
going at once to the work of the Lord. I was afraid to dally about the
matter any longer. I laid the case before the Lord and my wife. I knew
she was to be the greatest sufferer by the change, and her counsel
weighed more with me than that of all others. Considering what _might_
result from delay, the brave little woman said "Go." That settled it.

In August, 1862, I wound up my business, and prepared to enter Eminence
College. I rented an old, dilapidated house near the railroad, a mile
above town. The place had about three acres for cultivation, and the
same amount in grass. I kept a horse and buggy, a cow and several hogs.
My wife raised a large number of fowls. I cultivated the ground, making
it produce all it would, cut and hauled my fuel from the woods, and so
managed as to be at no great expense in living. But when going to a
city market every week, and feeling no embarrassment about money, we
indulged in a style of living that now had to be discontinued. This
went rather hard, but we tried to bear it bravely. The plainest and
hardest living of our lives, by far, were those years at Eminence. The
self-denial of my wife, for my sake and the gospel's, greatly
encouraged me to bear the cross.

I did double work during the whole time, reciting eight times a day.
This required intense application. I allowed myself eight hours for
sleep, and the other sixteen were given to study. Whether eating,
walking, working in the garden or chopping wood, I was boring into the
questions of the recitation room. I would occasionally take a little
turn with the boys on the playground at noon, but not often. I was fond
of it, but felt that I could not spare the time. This was a sad
mistake, confirmed by a life of broken-down health. But, like many
others, it was not discovered till the mischief was done. A determined
effort to crowd four years' work into two, under discouraging
circumstances, resulted in impaired health; which continued labor
beyond my strength kept impaired for the rest of my life. It is often
stated that preachers suffer more from overeating than overwork. This
is doubtless true to a large extent. But it was far from true in my
case. I was never a large eater after I was grown. And when my health
first failed me, want of a variety of good, nourishing food had no
little to do with it. And all through subsequent life, a trouble has
been to take sufficient food to meet the wants of the system.

I was the first married man that ever attended Eminence College. It was
considered quite a novelty by some. But a few months later, in the same
term, Bro. Briney came in. He and his wife boarded at the college. A
few years later Bro. George Bersot and wife came, and married
school-boys got to be quite common.

While attending school, I preached once a month for the old church at
home--Pleasant Hill. The distance was twenty miles, with a good dirt
road--when it wasn't bad. This afforded my wife an opportunity, during
favorable weather, to go to see her parents once a month. And her
father was now getting low with consumption. The church promised me no
specified amount for my preaching, and, as is frequently the case, most
of them considered the contract complied with when they gave me a
hearing. They were not in sympathy with my college enterprise, and were
not specially concerned about supporting it.

In May, 1863, my father-in-law died. In his death I lost one of my best
and dearest earthly friends. He was the only one who encouraged me in
my efforts for an education. While he could give me no material aid,
being himself embarrassed by years of affliction, his wise counsel and
deep sympathy helped me even more than money, badly as that was needed.
When he was gone, I felt as if the only bright spot in my horizon,
apart from my family, had faded into darkness. By nature he had a quick
temper, and was very impulsive. By Christian culture he came to be a
model in gentleness, patience and self-control. He was a wonderful
example of how men, by faith, "out of weakness are made strong." As we
stood around his bed of death, and his breathing indicated that the end
was at hand, he opened his eyes as I was bending over him, looked me
earnestly in the face, and composedly said, "Frank, be a true man." And
with these words his spirit took its flight. No other words that ever
fell from mortal lips ever so impressed me as these. The source whence
they came, and the circumstances under which they were uttered, gave
them peculiar significance. My soul, what is it for one to be a true
man--true to his friends and true to his foes; true to his family and
to her whose life is dearer to him than his own; true to himself and
his better nature in all that involves his honor as a man; true to the
truth, under all circumstances; and true to the Saviour and His cause,
to which he has dedicated his life? Ever in after years when tempted in
regard to a faithful discharge of its responsibilities, those sacred
words came from the sleeping dust of death--"Frank, be a true man."
Though dead, he yet speaks, and his words have been fruitful of good.

While attending his death and funeral, our house was broken into, and
almost everything we had was stolen. We had laid in meat and lard for
the year, and not a pound was left. All the flour, meal, sugar, coffee,
preserves, jams, jellies, and everything else, was taken. Not a pound
of anything to eat was left on the place. All the best cupboard ware,
and part of the bedding and my wife's clothing were taken. This was a
sorry plight to find ourselves in when we returned from the funeral.
The country was full of soldiers, and nothing was done towards
recovering the property. Thus we started on a darker and rougher road
for the rest of college life.

During the first year at Eminence there grew up a strong rivalry
between the two leading college societies--the Philomathean and the
Rising Star. Both were strong in numbers, and each had in it an unusual
amount of talent. I was appointed by the Philomathean Society to
criticise the Rising Stars. This was my special business. I prepared
what I called a scrap-basket. For this I would prepare notes from time
to time, as something would suggest them, and on the nights of public
exhibition, which were quite frequent, I would read them. These were
cuts at the young ladies and criticisms of their performances, as sharp
as I could make them. The result was, the whole Society soon got too
much out of humor to speak to me. They called me "Scraps." Even Sister
Giltner became offended, and was so for several months, till I was
brought down in sickness, and then her good heart conquered, and she
came to see me, bringing a load of delicacies to tempt and satisfy my
appetite. The "scrap" at which she became offended was about this:
Coming on the stage, the first scrap I took from the basket read: "We
do not expect many compliments for this dish of scraps, especially from
the young ladies of the boarding-house, as they are so used to being
fed on scraps, it will be no variety to them." Sister G. prided herself
on her good table. I knew it was good, and hence felt free to make the
jocular remark. Had it been otherwise, I should have felt some
hesitation in doing so.

President Giltner and I were in frequent conflict, and he came in for a
full share of notice from the scrap-basket. While I would not assent to
his views of things, which frequently caused disputation, on the whole
he was kind and generous, and did much to help me through those hard
school years. I have since met many of those young ladies in all parts
of the country, mothers of interesting families, but not one of them
had ever forgotten that scrap-basket.

Doctor Russell was my teacher in Latin and the Sciences, and Prof.
Henry Giltner in Mathematics and Greek. The Doctor was a fine moralist,
but an unbeliever. He was a fine teacher, and very popular with the
boys.

In the public debates in our society, Bro. J. B. Briney and I were
always pitted against each other. We were the oldest and the nearest
equal in our advancement, especially in this line. We had quite a
number of public discussions.

Here, as elsewhere, many went through on the shoulders of others. As an
illustration of this, take two young men who were appointed on public
debate. Soon each came to me insisting that I should write his speech.
I refused both. The time was drawing nigh, and neither had done
anything. One evening one of them went home with me from school, and
compelled me, virtually, to write his speech. He was delighted with it.
The next morning, while he was asleep, I got up and wrote a reply, just
"tearing it all to flinders." The negative gained the decision, and
neither one knows to this day that I wrote the speech of the other.

During the winter of 1862-3 I went to Hendronsville, the old church
that now composes the one at Smithfield, to fill an appointment for
Bro. Giltner. I went to dinner with old Bro. Hieatt. On leaving, he
gave me a dollar--the first dollar I ever received for preaching.

In the summer of 1863 I held a meeting at Hendronsville, with Bro.
Giltner, for which I was liberally paid, all things considered, and
this was my first pay for a protracted meeting.

The same vacation, I went to South Fork, in Boone county, to fill an
appointment for Bro. Wm. Tandy. Bro. Jacob Hugley was to come on the
first of the week, and join me in a protracted meeting. Something
prevented him from coming. I soon ran out of sermons, the supply on
hand being small. In the meantime a fine interest had sprung up, and I
had no excuse for quitting. So I had either to face the music, prepare
and preach two sermons a day, or ingloriously surrender. The meeting
continued two weeks, with some eighteen or twenty additions. During the
same trip I held a meeting at a church near Walton, at which several
additions were made to the congregation.

I did but little preaching during the school term. Convenient churches
could not be obtained, and inconvenient ones took too much of my time
to be given for nothing.

At Eminence I first met Bro. I. B. Grubbs. He came to preach for a few
days, and spent a day at our humble home. I then formed for him a
peculiar attachment, which has grown and strengthened with the passing
years. Our minds ran close together in the channels of divine truth,
and they have never materially diverged. A disagreement between us in
the interpretation of Scripture has been very rare.

Old Bro. T. M. Allen preached for the church at Eminence while I was
there. His sermons were enjoyable, and possessed considerable power,
but they lacked logical construction, and I learned but little from
them.

In a few weeks after going to Eminence, in the fall of 1862, we were
blessed with the birth of a third daughter, and in the summer of 1864
the Lord took her to himself, and left us to mourn her absence.

In June, 1864, I went with Willis and Wallace Cox to Daviess county, to
hold some meetings. Wallace was not able to preach, but went along for
the enjoyment of the trip. He had labored there before, and was well
acquainted. We held a meeting at Owensboro, and one at a new church
some eight miles in the country. Both meetings were moderately
successful.

As an evidence of what some men can do, I shall speak of a meeting held
about this time, _without giving place or name_. The meeting had been
successful, and a fine interest prevailed. The night it was to close
there came a severe storm, and no one was out. We had to leave the next
morning, and on the next Lord's day the brethren raised considerable
money and gave it to the preacher to send to us. Some years after, the
brother who was with me in the meeting went back there to preach for
the church, and while there some one asked him whether he and I
received our money all right. This was the first intimation that any
money had been sent to us. The case was investigated by the church, and
the man confessed he had never sent it. The brother got his, and the
thief preacher promised to send mine, but hasn't done it yet. He is
still preaching, and on several occasions has come a long way to hear
me preach. What kind of a face and heart such a man can have, is a
mystery I have never been able to solve!



CHAPTER IX.

Leaves College. Goes to Alexandria, Ky. An Adventure in Ohio. A Baby
_not_ Baptized. Peril in Crossing the River. Opens His School. Makes
Some Money. Buys a Nice Home.


Having obtained a sufficient knowledge of Latin, Greek, and various
sciences, to enable me to prosecute my education without a teacher, and
my health being bad through close application and hard living, and
feeling that I ought not to subject my family to such hardships any
longer, I determined, very reluctantly, to leave college, at least for
a time. I had now been at Eminence two years, and I shall ever thank
God that even for this short time I was able to gratify my burning
desire to acquire knowledge. It was at a great sacrifice we went there
and remained as long as we did, but we have never once regretted it.

Through the influence of President Giltner, we secured the High School
at Alexandria, Campbell county, Ky. This had been conducted for some
years previously by Bros. O. A. and Chester Bartholomew, under the name
of the "Mammoth Institute." I visited the place, and arranged to
conduct the school and preach for the church there, which was small and
financially weak; but there was no other in reach. So I could not do
better than to give them all my time, at whatever could be raised in
the way of salary. They had a nice little brick house, and a number of
good members, and for several years the church prospered; but the
county filled up with Germans, some of the best members moved away, and
the cause went down. The house was sold, and to-day we have no church
in the place.

After completing arrangements to preach and teach, I went over to
Hamersville, Brown county, O., to see some relatives. A brother and
sister of my father lived there, besides other relatives. My uncle had
a large family. I had never visited any of them, and now being near and
having a little time, I borrowed a horse and rode over. I sent an
appointment for Lord's day at Hamersville, and got there about the
middle of the week. I found that an appointment had not been made for
Sunday morning, but for night. The reason was, the Methodists were to
have a quarterly meeting in the woods near town--a big affair--and
everybody was going. Hence I could get no hearing in the morning. I
went to the meeting, as it was the only place to which to go. It was
thought that three thousand people were on the ground. There were seven
preachers. It was during the darkest period of the war, and every man
from the south side of the Ohio River was looked upon with suspicion. I
had been there several days, and quite a number knew who I was and
where I was from. I took a seat near the stand, and when they prayed,
in conformity with their custom, I kneeled in the leaves. The old
preacher who "led in prayer" yelled as if his congregation was a mile
away and God was on a journey. He began by praying for the President;
then his Cabinet; then the Senate; then the Representatives; then the
generals; then the colonels; then the captains; then the private
soldiers. All this I tolerated, but did not say Amen. Finally he prayed
for the utter extermination of the Southern people. He besought God to
wipe them out of existence--men, women and children--from the Ohio
River to the Gulf of Mexico. This blasphemy and contemptible wickedness
I could not endure, and I arose from my knees. Perhaps five hundred
people saw me when I got up. The point in the prayer at which I got up
aroused suspicion, and inquiry was in a moment rife. They learned who I
was and where I was from, and the excitement grew intense. Numerous
threats were made to hang me on a limb there and then. The country was
full of what they called "copperheads," who had kept very quiet,
because it was to their interest to do so, but now they were aroused,
and any attempt at violence would have led to the most serious trouble.
During the intermission at noon, men of different politics congregated
in different groups, in earnest conversation, and the meeting was
forgotten in the excitement over a refusal to indorse that prayer. I
was waited on by a committee to know if it was my political feelings
that caused me to get up when I did. Without hesitation, I confessed
that it was. Then they said, "What more need have we of evidence?" It
was finally decided, so we were informed, that I would not be allowed
to preach at night--that they would egg me, etc. But at night, not only
the house, but the yard, was full of "copperheads" who meant
"business," and I preached without molestation.

They had been holding these meetings at various places throughout the
country, and at all of them sprinkled all the children that their
parents could be induced to bring. One lady had a bright little boy
about eighteen months old, and when the Presiding Elder took him to
"baptize" him, he said, "Sister, name this child." She responded, "His
name is Vallandigham." He flew into a perfect rage, handed the child to
her as if it were burning his fingers, saying, "If you want this child
baptized you will have to change its name. I will baptize no child
named for a traitor." The mother took the child and departed. We
presume that had its name been Jeff. Davis, he would have broken its
neck on the spot. Such was the "religion" of that class at that time.
The speeches on the day alluded to were nothing but political harangues
of the most exciting nature. Previously I had thought they had politics
and religion mixed, but I now discovered that there was no mixture
about it.

On my return, I had a little adventure in crossing the river. The ferry
was at New Richmond. The boat was a small affair, propelled by poles
and oars. It was just wide enough for a wagon, and had railings on the
sides. A two-horse wagon went in before me. When we got some distance
out into the river, one of the horses jumped over the railing, and
caused the boat to careen so that it was filling rapidly. It was
astonishing how those river men, who, perhaps, had been reared on the
water, became excited. They seemed almost incapable of any intelligent
action, but yelled like so many savages. I decided at once upon my
course. I got into the wagon, calculating that the water would probably
not come to my head while standing up, should the boat go down. If it
should, then I determined to take my horse by the tail and let him tow
me ashore. But the owner of the team succeeded in cutting the harness,
thus freeing the horse and allowing the boat to right itself so that it
did not sink.

We moved from Eminence to Alexandria, and boarded with a gentleman by
the name of Brown. He had a nice family, a good house, and he was a
clever gentleman, and a "hardshell" Baptist of the first water.

Our school opened about the first of September, with seventy-eight
pupils, and it soon increased to 130. Not expecting so many, I had
secured no assistant but my wife; and the result was, we were both
over-worked. I had to hear several classes out of school hours,
especially in Latin and Greek. There were some young men in these
studies, clerks, merchants, etc., who were not otherwise in the school,
and these recitations were in the evening after school was dismissed.
This, with preaching every Lord's day, worked me very hard. The school
paid well, and for the first time since I gave up business for the
gospel of Christ, I made some money.

In a few months, as soon as I saw an open road to success, I bought a
nice little cottage and two acres of ground, from Bro. Giltner, at
$1,200. He had taken it for a school debt, and let us have it on
reasonable terms. It was nicely improved, and altogether a desirable
piece of property. Thus for the first time we had a home of our own.
This is a luxury that comparatively few preachers can enjoy. Moving
from place to place as, for example, Methodist preachers have to do, is
unfavorable to domestic happiness. How few members of our churches ever
think of this, or make allowance for the discomfort frequent changes of
residence impose upon the families of their preachers! To own a home
and have the taste and the means to adorn it, is an educational force
in any family; its lack, a great misfortune.



CHAPTER X.

Narrow Escapes. Is Thrown from a Horse. Has Pneumonia. Nearly Killed.
Self-possession. Almost Drowned. Eludes Angry Soldiers. Reflections.


During the Christmas holidays we went down to Oldham county to see our
relatives. While there, an event occurred, the recollection of which
brings up a chapter of NARROW ESCAPES hitherto untold, a few of which I
shall relate in their order.

When about thirteen years of age, a horse on which I was riding in a
slow walk and on a level road, fell, throwing me over its head and
coming over on top of me. It broke both bones of my left ankle and
several ribs, mashing in my left breast, which has ever since been much
depressed; it never developed like the other, and the lung on that side
is the one now chiefly affected. This accident occurred at
Ballardsville, on a public day, some three miles from home. I was taken
to the home of Dr. Swaine, our family physician, near which it
happened. He was absent, and a doctor from Shelby county was called. He
had a carpenter to make a box, reaching from my foot to my knee, and in
this he put my leg. The box was straight on the bottom, and as the
break was just in the hollow between the calf and the heel, anybody
that had any sense should have known that the broken part would settle
down level with the rest, and a bad job be the result. It was badly
set, and gave me much trouble for several years.

Following this, in successive winters, I had two severe spells of
pneumonia in that left lung, in both of which my life was despaired of.

One day I was hauling heavy barn sills. They were swung under the hind
axle, and the pole was tied by a chain back around the sill. The chain
caught on a solid rock in the road, and, as I had four strong horses,
and they all came to a dead pull, the chain broke; then the pole came
over with force enough to have mashed every bone in a man's body. The
horses happened to be on a straight pull, and the pole just brushed by
my right shoulder and side. Had it struck me, I might as well have been
struck by a cannon-ball. That ended my dragging logs without a block
under the front end of the pole.

While trading in Louisville, a grocery firm with which I dealt to some
extent had a clerk who was very dissipated at times. He was a desperate
character, and, when drinking, was very dangerous. One day I sold them
a lot of bacon, and this clerk, who almost had delirium tremens at the
time, made a mistake in weighing it. When I told him of it, he took it
as an accusation of intentional swindling. Instantly he came at me with
a large cheese knife, swearing vengeance and his eyes flashing fire.
There was nothing in reach with which to defend myself, and I could not
well get out of his way. I decided instantly on the only possible way
of escape. I stood perfectly still, did not move a hand, and looked him
steadily in the eye. When he got to me, he hesitated a moment, and the
uplifted hand with the huge knife dropped to his side. Not a word was
spoken, nor did my eye fall from his, and he turned and went back to
his work.

During the summer after I confessed the Saviour, quite a number of
hands were harvesting at my father-in-law's. On Saturday evening we
went to a large pond near by to bathe. It was made to supply a saw-mill
by throwing a large dam across a hollow. It covered, perhaps, an acre
of ground, and was twelve or fifteen feet deep in places. I never could
swim successfully, but a number of those present were good swimmers,
and there were many slabs on the pond that would float several men. I
told them I believed I could swim across the pond, and if I could not
there were too many good swimmers present to let me drown. I swam
across once, and, after resting a moment, started back. When I got
about the middle, I missed my stroke and went down. I thought nothing
of it at first, fully expecting that when I came to the top they would
save me. I came to the top, could hear them yelling like Indians, but
no one came to my rescue. I took breath and went down again. When I
came up the second time the result was the same. When I came up the
third time, and no one there to help me, I began to get a little uneasy
and considerably out of humor. I was becoming exhausted, and I knew
that I could not come to the top more than once or twice more. I tried
to go to the bottom, knowing that if I could touch bottom I could
spring to the surface without exertion. But I could not reach the
bottom. I came up the fourth time; still no one gave me assistance. By
summoning the entire stock of remaining strength, I came up the fifth
time. As I did so, a strong young man, Sparks by name, a good swimmer,
caught me by the left arm near the shoulder. He told me to take hold of
him, but this I refused to do. I thought this might endanger him, and
that if I would be perfectly passive he could manage me with no danger
to himself. But when I would not take hold of him, he let me go and
swam off and left me. Another man was within ten feet at the time,
coming to his assistance. When I went down this time, I was satisfied
they were going to let me drown. I felt that I could not come to the
top again, and could not reach the bottom. I thought if I could reach
the bottom I could crawl out by springing to the top now and then for
breath. But I could not touch bottom. I then began to calculate the
chances of their getting my body out in time to resuscitate it. I knew
it would not take long to cut the dam and drain the pond; but, when I
reflected that they had not the presence of mind to do anything, I lost
all hope in that direction. I saw no chance for me, and regarded the
end as come. The reflection that I had obeyed the gospel was intensely
joyous. During the whole time I had not strangled, knowing that it
would be fatal. A young man named Gipson--Sam Gipson--one of the owners
of the mill, was some eighty yards away, filing the saw. When Sparks
swam away and left me, Gipson saw they were going to let me drown, and
ran to my assistance. He got on one of the large slabs, and came in to
where I had gone down. I was still making some commotion in the water,
and, guessing about where I was, he pushed a plank down that came just
under my left arm. I knew what it was, and pressed it to my side. He
then bore on the other end and brought me to the surface. He held on
thus till others came and helped me upon the slab. As soon as I got
breath a few times I appeared to be all right, and they thought I was
only playing a trick on them; but in a few moments I tumbled over,
became black in the face, and suffered intensely for several hours.

On one occasion during the war I went into Floydsburg, on the morning
after Christmas day. There was a little squad of Confederates there,
belonging to the command of Col. Jessee, of New Castle, Ky. One of them
was a boy, named Hall, who went from that neighborhood. The rest were
strangers. I was introduced to the lieutenant in command, and had some
talk with him. The main street of the town runs east and west. About
the middle, the Brownsboro road comes in from the north, at a right
angle. This comes down a "branch" which crosses the main street. At the
east end of town the road descends into another hollow. Some of the
soldiers were inside, some sitting outside, of a blacksmith shop, and
some on their horses. I had walked near the east end, till I was just
on the ridge between the two hollows. I was standing at the door of
Col. Wilson, talking to his wife, when several companies of negroes,
stationed at La Grange under the command of white men, came marching
into town. They were a terror to the whole country. A little negro boy,
chopping wood just at the east edge of town, informed the commander,
who was riding in front, that the rebels were at the shop. Instantly
everything was quieted, and a stealthy march for the shop began. From
my position I could see both parties, and that the rebels were wholly
unsuspecting. While they were nothing to me, and I had but little
sympathy with them, for they were not in the regular service, I could
not stand and see them surprised and shot. I determined to warn them.
Mrs. Wilson tried to dissuade me, assuring me that it would be certain
death. I confess I could see it in no other light myself, yet I could
not decline. I walked down the street with an unconcerned air, about
forty yards in advance of the company. The lieutenant was sitting on
his horse sidewise, with his face turned from me, talking to a
Presbyterian preacher. I could see the eyes of the preacher over the
shoulders of the horse, but he was looking up into the face of the
other man, and I could catch the eye of neither. Finally, I had to stop
and make lively demonstrations in the face of the whole negro command.
When the attention of the Confederates was attracted, they endeavored
to escape by the Brownsboro road, and a charge from the other company
was instantly ordered. Each company opened fire on the other. I was on
the side of the street next to the Brownsboro road, and hence thrown
into all of the crossfire. I stood perfectly still till the entire
colored company passed by me. One man fell within a few feet of me, and
afterwards died. They had a running fight till they got out of hearing.
They caught young Hall, the only one I knew, and killed him.
Notwithstanding the agreeable disappointment at not finding myself
killed, I concluded that it might not be healthy to stay around there.
The town contained one of the most unprincipled white men that ever
went unhung. He was a sneak thief, and made it his business to get
Southern men into trouble. I saw him watching me all the time. I
concluded, therefore, that it would be better for me to leave town
before the soldiers got back. I had not gone more than a mile when they
returned, and threatened to burn the town if I was not produced. They
were watching me from the first, and the only thing that saved me was
they concluded that they could attend to me after they got through with
the rebels. They were told that I had left town, and were put on the
wrong road in search of me. I was then notified, and my holiday visit
terminated suddenly.

When I think now of the many narrow escapes from death before I was a
child of God, a number of which are not recorded, my heart overflows
with gratitude for the kind Providence that spared me till I knew the
way of life and had the precious promises of God. An ungodly man may be
brave, and face death without a tremor, but only a child of God can
face certain death as it comes on apace in the stillness of the sick
chamber, and when the body is wasted with disease, in perfect composure
and even inexpressible joy.



CHAPTER XI.

He Abandons the School-room. Remarkable Meeting near Alexandria.
Incidents. Establishes a Church. Mischief-making Preachers. Long and
Severe Attack of Typhoid Fever. Does not Lose Hope. Gratitude.


After teaching a year, I decided to abandon the school-room and give
myself wholly to the preaching of the Word. In the summer of 1865 I did
some mission work in Boone county, under the direction of the State
Board. In August, I held a meeting in Campbell county, about five miles
from Alexandria. The circumstances were a little peculiar. The Baptist
meeting-house in Alexandria had been blown down, and they were using
our house, at our invitation, every Lord's day afternoon, till they
could rebuild. They had a house about five miles in the country, and a
large congregation. Nearly the whole community were Baptists, and they
claimed a kind of preëmption. We had not a member in the neighborhood.
I was exceedingly anxious to hold a meeting in the very center of this
stronghold, and thought that as they were using our house, they would
grant me the use of theirs; but they would not. They offered to let me
have it for one sermon, but not for a protracted meeting. This did not
suit my purpose; and as there was an old log school-house near by, I
made an appointment for a meeting in this, which was to begin on Sunday
afternoon; and a few friends went with me from town. When we arrived at
the place, not a soul was on the ground; so having waited after the
time, and no one coming, I decided at once that the Baptists had
reported the appointment withdrawn, so that when I came and found no
one, I would be disgusted, and return home. But I was not disposed to
be defeated in that way. There was no brother in reach with whom I
could stay, but I told the friends to go back to town and leave me, and
that I would hold the meeting, "if I had to sleep in the woods, live on
pawpaws, and drink out of the 'branch.'" So they left me.

There was a man living about a mile away whom the Baptists had excluded
about a year before, and who had no good feeling for them. Concluding
that that would be the best chance for shelter, I went to the house,
and learned from him that the appointment had indeed been
countermanded, just as I suspected. He promised me food and shelter
while I held the meeting. A number of neighbor boys were there with
his, and these were told to circulate the appointment for next night.
The following day he and I went and cleaned the house, putting in some
"anxious seats," fixing it to hold as many as possible. He sent his
boys out through the neighborhood notifying the people, and that night
we had about thirty present. The next night the house was full; and
from this on we had large audiences, day and night. In a few days we
built an arbor in front, and seated it; then, standing in the door, I
preached to those within and without. The meeting continued two weeks,
and resulted in fifty-two additions. Twenty-seven of these were from
that Baptist Church, and the rest by confession. A few of the
twenty-seven, the man with whom I lodged among the number, were not in
the fellowship of the church at that time.

Several incidents occurred during the meeting. A very wicked man began
to attend, and one night he felt that he could stand the fire no
longer; but as I was in the door, preventing his escape in that
direction, he leaped out of a window, and ran off into the woods. In
about ten minutes he came crowding in from the outside, to make the
confession.

A Baptist man became interested in the meeting, but his wife was so
bitter in her feelings that she would not attend. He finally prevailed
upon her to come. Going home, he asked her how she liked it. "Better
than I expected," was the reply. No more was said, but the next day she
came without persuasion. When asked the same question, she said, "They
don't preach what I thought they did." He was anxious to unite with us
on the Bible, but was waiting in the hope of getting her to come with
him. The next day she was in the house and he on the outside, and he
did not know till the meeting was over that she had come forward and
been received into the fellowship.

At this meeting a gentleman came and asked me to marry him that night
after the services should be over. I told him I could not, as I had not
obtained license to marry. He then asked if I would object to his
getting a Methodist preacher who lived several miles away. That night
there was a great crowd, and I saw nothing of the preacher, but while
we were singing an invitation song a gentleman came pushing in, and
gave me his hand. I thought, of course, he wanted to make the
confession, and I tried to seat him with the others who had come
forward; but he would not. He soon became excited, and, tearing himself
loose, forced his way into the crowd. Just then some one whispered to
me that that was the Methodist preacher. It was a long time before the
services closed, and he was still so embarrassed that it was with great
difficulty he performed the required ceremony. He hurried away without
speaking to me, and then sent his apology, stating that he was so
mortified over his blunder that he could not speak to me about it that
night.

On account of the numbers, the distance from town, and the want of
facilities for attendance there on the part of many of the converts,
they insisted upon having a church of their own at the school-house.
Under the circumstances it was thought best to comply with their
request. No officers were appointed as such, because of inexperience,
but several brethren were designated as those who should take a general
oversight of the flock, conduct their worship, etc., but none had
authority; and all were exhorted to be in subjection one to another.
They met every Lord's day and broke the loaf, and had prayer-meeting
Wednesday night. A large number took part in the worship. They had
frequent confessions, and a blacksmith across Licking River, who
preached, met them at the water, when notified, to attend to baptizing.
They thus grew in a few months from the fifty-two to seventy-five, when
two mischief-making preachers visited them and insisted that without
ordained elders and deacons they were no church at all, and finally
prevailed upon them to have a number of men ordained. I was sick, and
knew nothing that was going on. These ignorant novices thought there
was no use in having authority unless it were exercised. So they began
to crack their ecclesiastical whip, and the peace of the church was
disturbed. Things went from bad to worse till the whole congregation
went to pieces. Thus a good work was destroyed by the folly of two
ignorant, self-important preachers. Much mischief has been done in our
reformatory work by hasty organization. Like the New Testament
churches, we should have no ordained officers till we have material out
of which to make them.

About September 10, 1865, I was stricken down with typhoid fever. I had
a good physician, and he nursed me with the utmost care. During that
sickness he came to see me a _hundred and thirty_ times. For over seven
weeks there was not a hopeful symptom. He allowed no company in the
room but my wife and the nurses. He appointed good brethren to nurse
me, each night about. No one else was allowed to touch me, except my
wife. I did not see my two little children for over two months, though
they were all the time in the house. After seven weeks he told me that
for the first time he saw a slight indication of recovery. After I
became convalescent, he said, in talking over the case, that he could
attribute my recovery to but two things--my confidence all the time
that I should get well, and the faith I had in my physician. He
determined this latter by saying that I followed his direction minutely
in everything. Theologically, he could not have given a better
definition of faith. He was a Baptist.

I never gave up for a moment, and would not allow my mother to be sent
for till I was far on the road to recovery. I got out for the first
time on Christmas day, but it was a year before I was able to resume
regular preaching; and even then, and for a long time afterwards, I
felt the effects of this terrible disease. Had it not been for the
close attention of the doctor, and the good nursing of my dear wife and
kind brethren, I am sure that attack of sickness would have sent me to
my grave. Truly, God has been very merciful to me in giving me friends
wherever I have lived, and I have ever felt I could not be grateful
enough or diligent enough in the service of my Redeemer and His church
to repay Him or them for all this undeserved goodness.



CHAPTER XII.

Sells Out at Alexandria. Moves to Crittenden. Preaches there and at
Williamstown. Low State of these Churches. Plan of Work. Memorizing in
Sunday-school. Lack of Church Discipline. One-Man System. Moves to New
Liberty. Visits Mount Byrd.


In the spring of 1866, we sold out at Alexandria, and spent most of the
summer in Oldham county, among our friends, while I was recuperating my
health.

The meeting-house at La Grange had been blown down in a storm, and at
the solicitation of the church I visited a number of congregations and
obtained help to rebuild it. Midway was one of the places visited. Bro.
Franklin was there holding a meeting. This was my first acquaintance
with that grand hero of the Cross of Christ.

In September we moved to Crittenden, Ky. I preached for that church and
at Williamstown, each half the time, for the rest of that year, and for
1867. The churches were both at low ebb. They had had no regular
preaching for some time; had not met on Lord's day; had no discipline;
and everything was in decay and disorder.

I decided upon a plan of work for each church. The first point was to
get them to meet on the Lord's day and break the loaf, having social
worship, when I could not be with them. This done, we carefully revised
the church records, excluding whom we could not induce to attend the
house of the Lord and to try to discharge their Christian duties. This
was followed by protracted meetings at neighboring school-houses,
through which quite a number were added to both churches. Meetings were
then held in each church. By this time both churches were in a
prosperous condition. They both had good Sunday-schools, and a number
of members were taking an active part in the work of the church. We
disposed of the old house in Williamstown, and got the new house roofed
in 1867. We also repaired the house at Crittenden, getting it in nice
order, and putting in a baptistery.

For the year 1868, the church at Crittenden wanted all my time, and I
gave up the church at Williamstown, devoting all my energies to the one
church. We arranged a book in which each member promised to pay so much
a week. Envelopes were given them, through which they were to pay their
weekly installment on each Lord's day. The congregations were large and
regular, and double the amount of money was thus collected that had
ever been raised before.

That was before the days of Sunday-school "helps," and we made
memorizing the Scriptures a prominent feature in the work. The first of
January, 1868, I offered a reward to the one memorizing and repeating
the most Scripture that year. Quite a number started in to win the
prize, but it was soon evident that the contest was between three
girls. The amount of Scripture memorized was immense. All the scholars
memorized largely. Soon it required a teacher's whole time to hear the
verses of one of those girls. Then we had them recite during the week;
and, finally, I had them examined on the Scripture committed, repeating
here and there as called on. This was harder than repeating it all. The
first of June another little girl entered the lists. On the day they
were examined they could repeat with ease and accuracy any passage
committed to memory during the year. They were examined for several
hours.

Incredible as it may appear, two of these girls committed the whole
Bible, and another committed Anderson's Translation of the New
Testament in addition; still another did not begin till June, and
committed the Bible by the end of the year. I never intended such a
result, nor can I approve that way of cramming the memory.

While the church at Crittenden was in other respects in a flourishing
condition (indeed, rather too much flourish), it was difficult to get
it to act promptly and strictly in the administration of discipline.
The officers and church generally had more lax ideas on that subject
than I had. But in this particular I suppose they were about on a par
with most other congregations in Kentucky, both among our people and
others. Indeed, I must confess that at that time I was unusually strict
in such matters. I wanted everything pertaining to the church to come
square up to the mark in all respects, and I was unnecessarily worried
over every shortcoming. On account of not having discipline attended to
as strictly as I desired, I was disposed to resign at the close of
1868. But the elders promised more hearty coöperation in the matter,
and I accepted for another year conditionally. I stated publicly that I
would begin on three months' trial, and if at the end of that time the
church had not so coöperated with me as to effect certain ends, our
engagement would close. I did not succeed in getting the coöperation
desired, and the first Lord's day in April I announced to a crowded
house that my relation to them as preacher had closed. It fell upon
them like a thunder-clap from a clear sky. I stated the reasons, which
they understood, but had not regarded. Thus ended my ministry with that
church.

My preaching at Crittenden, and the subsequent history of the church,
impressed upon me a very important lesson, upon which I acted in after
life. While everything was "booming," I could not teach them
self-reliance. They depended upon me. I had to take the lead in
everything. Consequently, when I left, it was just like taking the
engine off a big lot of machinery. Everything came to a standstill. I
feared this, and tried to guard against it. The material, however, was
of such a nature that it was next to impossible to get them to go
forward in church work without being led. But I was so impressed with
the virtual loss of my work then, that I made it a special point, ever
after, to develop the church in self-reliance, and make it largely
independent of a preacher.

In 1869 I decided that it was not best for the Master's cause for me to
longer give all my time to the Crittenden church, as I wanted them to
learn to do without me. So the first of January I engaged to preach for
the church at New Liberty, Owen county, one-half my time. Resigning at
Crittenden in April, in May I moved to New Liberty. Here I found a
good, substantial set of brethren, and did a substantial work. We soon
had a good Sunday-school, renovated the house, cut off a lot of dead
material, and got the church in good working order.

In May, 1869, I held a successful meeting in Owenton, and established
the cause in that place. Up to this time we had no organization there.
In 1870 I held them the second meeting. The cause continued to grow
there. In a few years they built a house of worship. The church has
generally been in a prosperous condition.

In August of this year, I held another meeting for my old home church,
Pleasant Hill. It resulted in a goodly number of additions. It was
always a peculiar pleasure to hold a meeting among these old
associates, and I held quite a number.

In August, 1869, Bro. I. B. Grubbs and I met at Mt. Byrd to hold a
protracted meeting. It was the first in their new house, after its
completion. We had an enjoyable and successful meeting. This was my
introduction to Mt. Byrd, which has since afforded me a home, has stood
by me through good and evil fortune, has never wavered in its devotion
and fidelity, and among whose good members my frail body will rest,
till it rises in the likeness of Christ.

Here I might as well express my views upon the lack of church
discipline, as they have been formed from an extensive observation in
this and other States. I must, however, do this briefly. No one can
read the epistles of the apostles, and especially those of Paul, and
not be profoundly impressed with the belief that the administration of
discipline engaged a large share of their attention; and we may infer
the necessity of this from the very nature of the case. The first
churches were largely formed of Gentile converts, and these came from
heathenism; and they had to be recovered from its debasing practices;
and even the converts from among the Jews had to be reformed from many
evil ways. Any one who will read even casually Paul's pastoral epistles
will see these evils and sins exposed. These were contrary to the
purity and benevolence of the new religion, and hence the necessity of
self-denial and constant diligence on the part of both people and
pastors.

"The times have changed and we have changed with them," but the _forms_
of sin have changed rather than the thing itself, and we have as much
need to practice watchcare over ourselves and others as ever. It was
Cain that asked, "Am I my brother's keeper?"

I am satisfied that the two crying needs in our Kentucky churches, and
I suppose elsewhere, are the faithful administration of discipline by
our elders and activity in Christian work by our members. I think we
are growing in the latter, and fear we are falling off in the former.
The reasons for both these opinions are not, in my opinion, hard to
find. Had I time and strength I should like to give them in full.



CHAPTER XIII.

History of the Mt. Byrd Church. When Established. Where. Charter
Members. Officers. Preachers. Number of Members. Three Things
Contributing to its Prosperity. New House of Worship. Serious Trouble
in the Church. How Settled. Method of Raising Money. The Church Builds
Allen a House. Organizes a Sunday-school. How it is Conducted.


Since the history of Mt. Byrd church from 1869 till my death will be an
inseparable part of my history, the two being linked together, the
church is destined to be known, and is known to-day, wherever I am
known. And as a part of its history will be given, I think it would be
more satisfactory to all who may feel interested in it, and more
profitable as a study, if an outline of its career from the beginning
were known. I therefore insert it here.

In 1832, Isaac Foster, then a Baptist preacher, came into this
community preaching the principles of reform as advocated by Thomas and
Alexander Campbell. The people gave heed to his teaching concerning the
kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, and on the second Lord's
day in September, 1832, at the house of David Floyd, on the top of the
Ohio River hill, opposite Hanover College, Ind., a church was
established. The following were the charter members: James Lindsey,
Hatty Ann Lindsey, William Maddox, Elizabeth Maddox, David Floyd, John
B. Floyd, Miss Mary A. Trout, Miss Catherine Trout, Miss Priscilla B.
Trout, Miss Sally Trout, Miss Saloma Overpeck, Miss Julia Ann Lindsey,
Miss Artamisia Cooper, Mrs. Minerva Cooper.

James Lindsey and his wife, Hatty A., were formerly members of the Old
Christian Connection, at Cane Ridge, Ky. William Maddox and his wife,
Elizabeth, were from the Baptists. The rest were admitted by immersion.

William Maddox and John B. Floyd were appointed elders, and David Lloyd
deacon.

For a time they met and worshiped in private houses. They then built a
meeting-house, near the river bluff, on the farm of Bro. David Floyd.
It was of hewed logs, and primitive in architecture. It was called Mt.
Olivet. They met every Lord's day to break bread, to worship God and to
edify one another in love. Much of the long-continued prosperity of the
Mt. Byrd church is doubtless due to beginning with good material and on
correct principles.

In that early day the church enjoyed the visits of such men as Isaiah
Cornelius, Allen Kendrick, L. L. Fleming, Jesse Mavity, Wm. Brown, and
others. The church increased in number rapidly.

In a short time several families of standing and influence moved into
the present neighborhood of Mt. Byrd and south of it, from Woodford
county, Ky. The house was unfavorably located, being on the extreme
edge of the territory from which the membership must come. It was
agreed by all parties to build another house, farther back from the
river, in a more desirable locality. About 1837 this house was built on
the farm of Bro. Robert Moffett, at the crossing of the Strother and
Cooper roads, about two and one-half miles from the other house, and
one and one-half south of Milton. It was a commodious frame building.
The site is now on the corner of Bro. Allen's place, two hundred yards
from his house. It was called Mt. Byrd, from the fact that it was on
part of a large survey of land known as the Byrd survey; and the "Mt."
was due to its elevation. It was understood that so soon as certain
obstacles were removed, the two churches were to become one. Hence the
house was used a year or two before our organization was established.
And, in one view of the case, Mt. Byrd had its origin in 1832; and in
another, in 1839.

On the second day of August, being the first Lord's day, 1839, an
organization was established on the following covenant:

    "We, the undersigned individuals, agree to have fellowship with
    each other, and to be united together in the bonds of Christian
    affection according to all the rules of conduct and requirements of
    God, as contained in His Word--the Scriptures of the Old and New
    Testaments."

    CHARTER MEMBERS.

    Robert Moffett, Elizabeth Moffett, Lucinda Moffett, Sarah Ann
    Moffett, Catherine Stipes, Alexander Moffett, Nancy Moffett, Emily
    Moffett, Harriet Moffett, Jane Moffett, Porter Fisher, Caroline
    Fisher, Hayden Fisher, Robert Thompson, Anna F. Thompson, Polly
    Blake, Elizabeth Taylor, Susan Taylor, Zachariah Taylor, Sally
    Taylor.

Porter Fisher was chosen elder.

In September following, Dr. Curtis J. Smith and Newton Short held them
a meeting, resulting in forty additions.

The members of the first organization began to move their membership to
Mt. Byrd, and soon the two congregations were one.

The following is a list of the overseers of the church, in their order,
from its establishment till 1885:

    Porter Fisher, Hayden Fisher, John B. Floyd, James Jones, Samuel
    Morris, John A. Bain, Isaac Trout, John S. Maddox, Jacob Trout,
    George Craig, F. G. Allen.

The following are the names of the preachers who have served the church
a stated length of time:

    Porter Fisher, Hiram Stark, J. Newton Payne, Dr. C. J. Smith, Henry
    Rice, Jesse Mavity, Dr. Sadler, J. A. Bain, G. B. Moore, A. A.
    Knight, J. C. Walden, J. V. Price, F. G. Allen.

In addition to meetings held by the regular preachers, it has enjoyed
the evangelistic labors of some of the ablest preachers in the
Reformation.

From its organization to June, 1885, there were added to the church, at
various times and in various ways, 982 members. At this time (June 12,
1885) the membership is 350.

In addition to removals, deaths, exclusions, etc., we gave a large
number to the Bedford Church when it last organized (1874), and our
colored membership organized to themselves in 1877. Also the nucleus of
the Beech Grove church went from here.

Three things, that have had much to do with the prosperity of this
church, deserve special mention--their course during the war, their way
of choosing church officers, and their method of church discipline.

During the war the church remained in a peaceful and prosperous
condition. At the beginning they were of one mind in the decision that
the religion of Christ was more important to them than political
interests; that the war would end, but that the kingdom of God would
not, and that they would stand for the things that could not be shaken
by the shock of arms. A large number of young men of the community were
in the service, and they wanted to be in a spiritual condition to take
care of such of them as should return. Though soldiers of both armies
were frequently in the neighborhood, the church continued the service
of God and the discharge of Christian duty as if the peace of the
country was undisturbed. Consequently, when the war was over, they had
no alienations to adjust, no broken down walls to rebuild, no breaches
to close up. They needed no reconstruction. Their history demonstrates
that even cruel war need not necessarily alienate the people of God.
The congregation was not a unit in political sympathy, but they allowed
no mixing of politics with religion, in the pulpit or elsewhere, on
either side. Strong rebels from Kentucky and strong Union men from
Indiana filled the pulpit during the time, but with the understanding
that they preach the gospel and not politics--no difference was made.

Till 1867 the method of selecting church officers was by popular
ballot. They were thus selected according to the feelings, and tastes,
and prejudices of men, women and children, many of whom are always
controlled by personal likes and dislikes. At this time a change was
made that resulted in great good. The change was to this effect, that a
committee in whom the church have perfect confidence be appointed to
select elders and deacons. When selected, their names are submitted to
the congregation, and two weeks given during which objections may be
made privately to the committee. Should objections be made to any one,
which are considered valid, and can not be removed, that name is
dropped and another substituted. It is understood from the beginning,
by all parties, that the objections are to be kept private, and if a
candidate is dropped on account of objections, he has no right to
demand the name of the objector nor the objections. When objections are
not made, or they no longer exist, it is understood that the selection
is ratified by the church. The parties are then set apart to their work
by fasting, prayer and the laying on of hands. In this way a better
selection is made, and the church is much more impressed with the
importance of the official work, and of their obligation to those set
apart, as co-operants in the work. The plan gave entire satisfaction,
and the church ever after observed it.

When I began to preach for the church, I introduced a plan of
disciplinary work which I had observed since my labors with the
Crittenden Church. The leading idea in it was to save the offender, and
the church was impressed with that fact. The relatives and friends of
the offending party were enlisted in an effort with the preachers and
elders to save him, with the understanding that if this could not be
done, the law of the Lord must be enforced in his exclusion. Such
efforts rarely failed, and, when they did, those most likely to be hurt
about his exclusion felt that they had failed in trying to save him,
and that all was done that could be done. When such efforts failed, the
case was then stated to the church, and if any one thought that he
might accomplish something, and wished an opportunity to try, action
was delayed till he did what he could, and thus the whole moral force
of the church was exerted. When all felt that nothing more could be
done, the law of the Lord was executed, the church withdrew its
fellowship, and the occasion was made as solemn and impressive as
possible. There was no voting as to whether or not they would exclude
him. That is a matter of divine legislation on which we have no right
to vote. The sense of the congregation was taken only as to whether or
not they had done all they could to save the offender, and had thus
complied with the law of the Lord in this respect. In twenty years,
with much attention to disciplinary work, I have never had the least
trouble or evil consequence result from a case of exclusion.

In 1867 they built a new house of worship, about a quarter of a mile
nearer Milton than was the old house. It is a large and substantial
frame.

When Mt. Byrd was established there were several strong Methodist and
Baptist churches within a few miles. They have all dwindled into
comparative insignificance, and Mt. Byrd has the controlling influence
in the county. Her territory extends sixteen miles along the Ohio River
and eight miles back.

I engaged to preach for Mt. Byrd Church one-half my time, beginning the
first of October, 1869. It is thirty miles from New Liberty, and at
that time it was reached by a dirt road terribly muddy in the winter. I
went back and forth on horseback. I arranged to have my two Sundays
come together, and spent the intervening week visiting the congregation
and preaching at some neighboring school-house. I thus made but one
trip a month. My health was very poor, and each visit I made they
thought would be the last.

After I began preaching at Mt. Byrd, I discovered a very serious
trouble in the church, of which I before knew nothing. I saw, from its
nature and the men involved in it, that unless it was peaceably and
permanently settled, the church would be effectually ruined. And
circumstances indicated that it was next to impossible to secure such a
settlement. I was deeply concerned about it.

The difficulty grew out of a man's making engagements to teach two
schools at once, and consequently having to disappoint one of the
parties. They had depended on him, and thereby lost the opportunity of
getting a good teacher. They felt grievously wronged, and sued for
damages. The teacher was a poor man, not able to fight the suit, and he
so worked upon his patrons that they promised to stand by him and
defend him in court. A large number of good and influential brethren
were involved in it, and they had worked up a very bad state of
feeling. Bro. J. S. Maddox, the leading elder, stood by me faithfully
in the work. We labored incessantly day and night for over two weeks
before we accomplished our purpose. I preached in the two school-houses
alternately, day and night, so as to reach all of both parties; for
they would not go to each other's houses. The rest of the time was
spent in visiting and laboring privately with the disaffected members.
The preaching was all directed to the one special end. Sometimes we
would have it nearly completed as we thought, and then the trouble
would break out again. One day our hearts beat with joyous hope, and
the next we were depressed and discouraged.

Finally, they agreed to arbitrate the matter if I alone would act as
arbitrator. I tried hard to reason them out of this, for I felt almost
certain that I would sacrifice myself in so doing. I felt that I could
hardly hope to retain the friendship of both parties in such a
complicated matter, over which there was so much bad feeling. But,
finding that there was no other way of settlement, I concluded that the
sacrifice of myself was a small matter as compared with the ruin of the
church, and I consented. All parties agreed to abide by my decision in
good faith, bury all their animosities, and be at peace among
themselves. I wrote out carefully the whole case, giving my decision on
each point, and the reasons therefor. I read it at a meeting at which
all were present. They all signed it, and the trouble was forever
ended. Both parties kept it in good faith, and I retained their
fraternal love.

When the church had been "rounded up," and all dead matter cast off, we
had 240 members on the list. Some new deacons were appointed, till we
had seven in all. Not because there were seven appointed at Jerusalem,
but because we needed that number and had material out of which to make
them. We divided the congregation into seven districts, each deacon
having his boundary defined. Each had a list of all the members in his
district, and it was his duty to obtain a subscription from each member
and collect it. Each child of a family made his own subscription. All
were expected to give something, unless they were beneficiaries of the
church. This system has several advantages: (1) More money is obtained
than when given only by heads of families. (2) Each one feels that he
is a factor in the church, not an overlooked cipher, and this does him
good. It stimulates him to do something. (3) In training each one to
give, however little they may be able, there is developed in them a
right spirit and a very important principle.

A business meeting was held every three months. At these the deacons
made their reports, and squared accounts with the preacher. Thus the
exact financial condition of the church was known. Cases of discipline,
missions, charities, and everything pertaining to the interests of the
church, were freely discussed. A record was kept of everything done.
These meetings were held on Saturday, and the next day a statement was
made to the church of what was done, and their sanction obtained to
such matters as it was thought best to submit.

With a thorough organization, systematic working, and the happy
settlement of the big trouble over which all were filled with anxiety,
the church took on new life, and ever after continued in an active,
growing condition.

The brethren soon petitioned me to move into their midst. I jocularly
told them I would do so if they would give me a good home. The
suggestion was no sooner made than accepted. Bro. J. H. Moffett gave me
eight acres of ground just where I wanted it, and he and the rest of
the brethren agreed to build me a house. I was permitted to plan just
such a house as I wanted, and they would see that it was built. No
obligation whatever was required of me as a condition. I was free to
dispose of it and leave them at any time, if I wished to do so. It was
all a matter of trust. The outside improvements were also made mostly
by the brethren. I may say here that in the fifteen years I preached
for that church, not a man ever charged me a cent for anything he ever
did for me, and they did everything that I needed to have done.

In the spring of 1870 we organized a Sunday-school. It ranged usually,
one year with another, from 125 to 150. One peculiar feature about it
was that a large number of old people attended. In a word, the _church_
went into the Sunday-school. The teachers have all the time been of the
older brethren and sisters, and many men and women of middle age and
beyond have been in the classes. We kept a record of the attendance,
recitations, contributions, etc., thus indicating the regularity of the
work. The record shows that there were perfect, in recitations and
attendance, twenty-six in 1873, thirty-four in 1874, and twenty in
1875. This is a fair sample for the fifteen years. The school is still
in a fine condition. Some members have not missed a single recitation
in five years.

From the beginning we have adhered to the rule of opening on the last
Sunday in April and continuing till Christmas. The congregation being
scattered over a large district, and the roads being bad in winter, we
have been in the habit of dismissing the children for the rest of the
year; but all the older people form one class, and are taught the
Scriptures by the preacher or elder of the church from the first of
January till the last of April.

I am satisfied this is a good arrangement for churches in the country,
where the membership is much scattered. It works well at Mt. Byrd, and
I don't see why it may not work well elsewhere under the same
circumstances.



CHAPTER XIV.

He Moves to Mt. Byrd. Debate with J. W. Fitch. Preaches at Madison,
Ind. Protracted Meetings at Columbia, Burksville, Thompson's Church,
Dover, Germantown, Pleasant Hill, Burksville again, Beech Grove, Dover
again.


In September, 1870, we moved to the neighborhood of Mt. Byrd. My house
not being completed, we lived in the lower end of Hunter's Bottom,
above Milton. We spent here a very pleasant year. I gave a good deal of
time to the building, helping in whatever I could do, which was quite a
benefit to my health. I continued to preach at New Liberty half my time
during this year and 1871. The last of October, 1871, we got into our
new house. It is about three hundred yards from the church, beautifully
situated on the main thoroughfare to Milton and Madison.

In 1871 I held two meetings in Carrollton, Ky. The cause was very low
there at that time. Our band was feeble; and the place almost entirely
given to sectarianism. We had no place of worship, and the court-house
in which we met was not comfortable. Some of the prominent members had
become very worldly. Because I preached against their sins, they became
much offended, but the offense was to reformation. They afterwards
built a meeting-house, and they are now in good condition.

Nov. 2, 1871, I began my first public religious debate. It was at Mt.
Byrd, and with Presiding Elder J. W. Fitch. It came about in this way:
At a Quarterly Conference in the county, the preachers and prominent
men present, to the number of fourteen, drew up and sent me a formal
challenge to meet C. W. Miller, at Mt. Byrd (this being by far the
largest house in the county), and debate certain designated
propositions. At that time I had a very bad opinion of Mr. Miller, and
there was no good feeling existing between us. In reply to their
communication I said: "You have a number of brethren in Kentucky of
equal or superior ability to Mr. Miller, whom I can meet as Christian
gentlemen, and when I have the promise of such a disputant, I shall be
ready to arrange propositions." They then applied to Mr. Fitch, and a
correspondence between us was opened. My purpose then, and ever since
in debating with Methodists, was to discuss the _system_ of Methodism,
instead of a few isolated propositions. In that way the people see what
_Methodism_ is; in this, they do not. We finally agreed that each
would affirm that the polity and practice of the church with which he
was identified are authorized by the word of God.

An immense crowd attended the debate. The weather was beautiful, and we
had dinner on the ground. Each affirmed for three days. My affirmation
closed Saturday afternoon. The President Moderator announced that the
debate would be resumed at 10 o'clock Monday, on the polity of the
Methodist Church, Mr. Fitch affirming. Monday, Mr. Fitch declined to
discuss the polity of his church, giving as a reason that it was of no
consequence, and he wanted to give all his time to more important
matters. He further stated that he had agreed to discuss the polity of
the church simply in order to get the debate, not that it was worth
discussing. I happened to have in my pocket a letter in which he had
insisted on the discussion of the polity of the two churches as a very
important matter. This was read. The President Moderator--Col.
Preston--ruled that he must either debate the question, as agreed upon,
or concede that it was indefensible; and he yielded. We learned
afterward, just what we then suspected, that the preachers present, of
whom there were about twelve, held a council on Saturday night, and
protested against his discussing the polity of the church.

The debate created a great deal of interest and investigation in the
community, and within nine months following, over one hundred were
added to the church. Of these, quite a number were from the Baptists
and Methodists.

A rather curious thing occurred during the debate. While on the
practice of the M. E. Church, I made a raid on the mourners' bench,
describing its workings and demanding authority for it. Mr. Fitch
jumped up, very much excited, and called me to order. His point of
order was that the M. E. Church, South, had abandoned the mourners'
bench; that it was now countenanced only by a few ignorant preachers
for whose conduct the church was not willing to be held responsible.
And as it was no longer a part of the practice of the church, he was
not there to affirm that it was authorized by the word of God. The
President appealed to all the Methodist preachers present to know if
that was the case. The last one of them said "yes." In three weeks I
went to Carrollton to hold a meeting, and the two most prominent
preachers at the debate were there in a meeting, and they had the
mourners' bench out twice a day, and six or eight mourners were
striving to "get through!" What are we to think of such as that?

By preaching at adjacent school-houses, the membership of the church
was considerably increased. This plan was continued till my editorial
work on the _Guide_ interfered with it.

About seven miles back from Mt. Byrd the Methodists had an old house,
and a weak church where they years ago had a strong one. We had quite a
number of members in that neighborhood. By our assisting in rebuilding
the old chapel, we held by written contract a fourth interest in it.
This gave us the use of the house one Sunday in the month, and at such
other times as it was not occupied by the Methodists. This we did in
order to have a place to preach in that community, and especially for
protracted meetings. We also rented the Presbyterian house in Milton,
by the year, for the same purpose.

In 1872 I engaged to preach at Carrollton and White's Run, both in
Carroll county, once a month at each. I held a meeting for each church,
and got the membership, to some extent, reconstructed.

But in May I was called to preach for the church in Madison, Ind.,
one-half my time. It being so convenient--just across the river from
me--and an important field, I got the churches at Carrollton and
White's Run to release me, and I entered on my work in Madison the
first of June, 1871. I preached for them the rest of that year. I held
a protracted meeting in October. The number of additions for the seven
months was small. Finding that they needed a preacher all the time,
since they had no one to lead them in the absence of a preacher, and
wishing to devote half my time to evangelizing, I resigned and induced
them to get Bro. J. H. Hardin in my place.

In November, 1872, I had a fine meeting at Columbia, Ky. This was
before the college there was built. Bro. J. H. Hardin was preaching for
the church. Bro. Azbill has since built up the church, but was that
year in Butler University. The fruits of my first meeting there are
manifest to this day. Prominent among these is the efficient work of
Dr. U. L. Taylor, who was formerly a Methodist, but for years has been
the stay of the congregation and college in that place.

In 1873 I gave one-half my time to holding meetings. In March I went to
Burksville, Cumberland county, Ky. The church had had no preaching for
a long time, and was not meeting on the Lord's day. There were a few
faithful ones, especially sisters, but the majority had gone to the
world. We had over forty additions. The membership was organized for
work, a Sunday-school was established, a preacher secured, and the
church entered on a long period of prosperity. Two preachers were the
result of this meeting--C. M. McPherson, of the _Apostolic Guide_,
and E. J. Ellison, now of Glasgow, Ky. They had been immersed, but,
with many others, had strayed from the fold. They were reclaimed and
put to work, and to-day they are faithful ministers of the Word.

As showing what may result from a word timely spoken, a young lady from
Nashville, now the wife of Bro. McPherson, was visiting a sister at
Burksville. She was a devoted Episcopalian, talented and accomplished.
One day she was telling me about her church and preacher, etc., and the
work she was trying to do for the Master. I asked her if she had ever
obeyed the gospel. She looked amazed, and remarked that that was a
strange question to ask a church member. I told her I feared that many
church members, and even devoted ones, had never obeyed the gospel; and
in a few words explained the reason why. She soon made the confession
and was immersed, stating afterwards that that question led to an
entire change of religious views.

In May I held a meeting at Thompson's Church, in Robinson county. The
meeting was of no special importance; the number of additions was
small, and no important results any way. Willis Cox was preaching for
the church.

At this meeting the wealthiest man in the church was greatly taken with
the preaching, said he intended to go to Dover, twenty odd miles away,
to hear me there, had three of his children immersed, and was almost
too happy to behave himself. He gave a _two cent copper_ to help pay
the expenses of the meeting! This was all they could get out of him. He
got so happy that it dried up the fountain of his liberality.

In June I held a meeting at Dover, Mason county. This was an old
church, and once a prosperous one, but a bad spirit had been engendered
during the war, and it had virtually gone to pieces. They were meeting,
and had a preacher employed, Bro. Willis Cox; but only a few members
were concerned about the things of Zion. They had had no additions for
so long that the town was full of young people who had grown up out of
the church. The brethren expected no additions, but wanted a meeting
for the encouragement of the faithful few. This was the way they put it
when they engaged me to hold the meeting. The house was well-filled
from the first, and in a few nights crowded. They paid profound
attention to the Word. This led me to hope for additions, but the
brethren hooted at the idea. I preached only at night and on the Lord's
day. On the ninth night they made a move, and continued to move till
fifty-seven were added. I baptized fifty. The deepest religious
interest prevailed that I ever had in any of my meetings. No telling
what the result would have been, had I not been taken sick and
compelled to leave. As I was going to the boat to return home, I went
by the church. It was crowded. I had just a few minutes. I went in and
explained the situation, and proposed to take the confession of any
that wished to make it, before I left. Without a word of exhortation
two came forward. Thus I left them.

Nearly all the young people of the town came into the church, so that
there was no outside element left to get up mischief, and it is
gratifying to know how faithfully they held out. The church has ever
since been in active working order.

In July I held a meeting at Germantown. Bro. J. C. Walden was preaching
for them. We had a pleasant meeting, but no special results.

In August I held another good meeting at my old home church--Pleasant
Hill, in Oldham county. I held them a meeting each year for five or six
years. While they were slow to assist me when I was struggling for a
start, after I got well under way they were quite liberal in reward of
my labor. But one dollar at the first would have done me more good,
because more needed, than five at the time they were given. This is a
mistake made by many churches.

In October, 1873, I held another meeting at Burksville. This was also a
fine meeting, but not quite so many additions were made as at the one
in March preceding.

In November I had a good meeting at Beech Grove, a country church in
Trimble county, eight miles from Mt. Byrd.

In December I was again at Dover. We had another excellent meeting, but
there was not material for so many converts as at first. This visit was
mainly for the membership, to rid the church of some dead material, and
put it into good working order. On account of getting sick at the
previous meeting, I had to leave before this needed work was
accomplished. Thus ended my labors for 1873.



CHAPTER XV.

Begins Preaching at Beech Grove. Debates with Elder Hiner. Amusing
Incident. Holds many Meetings. Debates with Elder Frogge. Debates again
with Elder Hiner. Repudiates Miller's Book. Sick Again. Holds more
Meetings.


In 1874 I engaged to preach once a month for the Beech Grove Church.

Beginning January 20th, at a Methodist church near Beech Grove, I held
a debate with Elder Robert Hiner. The debate continued eight days. It
was largely attended, though the roads and weather were bad. The
feeling throughout the debate was good, but hardly so much so as at the
one held at Mt. Byrd with Elder Fitch. A very amusing thing occurred.
Mr. Hiner brought all of his books, and, coming through Bedford, he got
all of Mr. Young's, the preacher at that place. They made a perfect
wagon load. He obtained a long table, like a carpenter's bench, and
stacked them up on it. I soon discovered that it was all for a show,
and the question was how to most successfully burlesque it. I first
thought of sending to Bedford and getting a large wagon-load of Patent
Office Reports and the like, and stacking them up on my table. But in
my room I discovered a little toy-book, about an inch long, called
"Orphan Willie." This I took to church in my vest pocket, with a few
leaves carefully turned down. After alluding to his "silent artillery,"
as I had done before, I drew out "Orphan Willie," and planted it on the
pulpit in position to effectually blow up his entire battery, with the
assurance that that was going to be done. I had laughed over the idea
till I thought I could do it without laughing. But in this I failed;
and the whole audience, Methodist preachers and all, got into such a
laugh that I lost half my speech. But the books were put out of sight,
and thus ended the scarecrow business.

During the debate Mr. Hiner expressed the opinion that I would yet come
back to the Methodist church. I told him he might as well talk of a
full-grown rooster, spurs and all, going back into the shell that
hatched it. For a long time this gave me the sobriquet of "Old
Chicken." Some brethren use it even now.

While on the design of baptism, Mr. Hiner remarked that if he believed
baptism was for the remission of sins, he would live on a creek or
river and be baptized every time he sinned. I gave it as my opinion
that in that case he would find it a very difficult matter to keep any
dry clothes!

During this year I held meetings at Louisville, Crittenden, Cove Hill,
Burksville and Glasgow, with varied success.

In 1875 I held meetings at Glasgow, Carrollton, Campbellsville,
Burksville, Bedford, Hodgenville and Columbia.

In July of this year I debated twelve days, at Burksville, with
Presiding Elder Frogge. He was the great champion of Methodism in
Southern Kentucky. He had had a great many debates, and, while he was
very ready and glib in his line of debating, I soon discovered that his
scholarship and reading were both very limited, exceedingly so; and I
intentionally widened the range of controversy more than was my wont,
to see what he would do--and he was completely lost. His forte in
debating is wit and ridicule, by which he gets his opponents angry and
confused. He tried this hard for three days, till he rendered himself
offensive to all. It was rumored that his brethren then held a council
and told him that this must be stopped; that he must debate the
questions on their merits or quit; that he was bringing the cause into
disrepute. The county paper, edited by a scholarly Episcopalian, was
very severe in its criticism of his conduct. This caused much
excitement among the Methodists. When he had to quit his efforts to get
me excited, he was no longer himself. This debate was held at the
request of the Baptists. Mr. Frogge and a Baptist preacher had debated
near there the fall before, and, the Baptist having failed, had to give
up the discussion. Mr. Frogge then left a broad and boastful challenge
for any immersionist. The Baptists were very sore over it, and when I
went there in the winter to hold a meeting they requested me to accept
his challenge. I referred them to the brethren, and with their
concurrence I entered upon the discussion.

In November I held another debate with Mr. Hiner, this time at Bedford,
Ky. It continued eight days. This created the most intense excitement I
ever saw in a meeting-house. At the two previous debates in the county
I repudiated C. W. Miller's book (_Points of Controversy_) as
authority. It is the book that Dr. Ditzler exposed. Our opponents said
I would not dare to do that where Miller was. They had him at this
debate. Mr. Hiner read from it a passage purporting to be from Moses
Stuart. I asked him what he was reading from. He said, "'Points of
Controversy,' and you challenge it if you dare." I then asked for the
page in Stuart's book where the language occurred. He refused to give
it. I had Stuart, and the inference was that he didn't want the
comparison made. When I got up I referred to what had passed about the
quotation, saying I was willing to take Stuart for it if he had given
me the page, but as for "Points of Controversy," I could take nothing
on its authority, for I repudiated the book and its author as authority
in anything. This provoked a personal wrangle with Miller, who was
close to me, after the debate--for the day was over. The excitement was
intense as we passed and repassed our compliments. Finally the house
refused to hear Mr. M. Even his own brethren rose as one man and went
out of the house. This so infuriated him that he left the place.

January 1, 1876, I went on the _Apostolic Times_ with I. B. Grubbs and
S. A. Kelley. I had been writing for it every two weeks, by contract,
for several years. From this time I devoted special attention to it
every week, and, with the exception of a few months from the sale of
the _Times_ to Dr. Hopson and Cozine till the establishing of the
_Guide_, I have been constantly engaged in editorial work.

About the middle of January I was taken down with intercostal
rheumatism and spinal trouble, and was very low for several months.
Very little hope was entertained of my recovery. After the intense
suffering was over, my system was so racked that convalescence was
slow. The doctors agreed that it was due to nervous exhaustion produced
by overwork. For years I had known nothing practically of mental rest,
and the year preceding was unusually severe on me, in my feeble state
of health. When I held the twelve days' debate at Burksville the summer
before, I went from my bed to the house and from the house to my bed. I
was hardly any better in the one held a few weeks before. These labors,
with those given to my home church of over three hundred members,
together with holding seven protracted meetings, and writing for the
_Times_, all the while in feeble health, brought me down very low.

I wish here to emphasize the fact that I have never gone out of my way
to either seek or shun a religious debate. I repeat this statement
here, lest some might think otherwise from the fact that I have held so
many.

After getting up again, I held meetings at Antioch, in Shelby county,
Glasgow, Burksville, South Elkhorn, and at some other points. This has
always been congenial employment for me.



CHAPTER XVI.

Continues to Evangelize. Dr. Cook's Prescription. Incident at Glendale.
Peculiar Feature in the Meeting at Madisonville. The Fractious Preacher
at Sonora. Closes his Evangelistic Labors. Establishes the _Old Path
Guide_. The Bruner Debate.


In 1877 I spent much time evangelizing, being called to hold protracted
meetings at many important places. I accepted work at seven of these,
and my labors were fruitful in the conversion of sinners and in
building up the saints in their most holy faith; but I had to be away
from home a great deal, and my exposure in all kinds of weather, and
the wear and tear of constant preaching, increased my lung disease.

While preaching at Cynthiana my spinal trouble returned, causing me to
close abruptly, and I could preach no more till July. On my return from
Cynthiana, some friends in Cincinnati induced me to visit a Dr. Cook (I
think that is the name). He was celebrated for his skill in such
afflictions. He was a corpulent, jolly old gentleman, full of humor.
When I was introduced, he looked at me for a moment without coming
near, and said: "Well, sir, you don't laugh enough. You take too
serious a view of life. Why, sir, at least two inches of your spinal
marrow is inflamed, produced by nervous exhaustion, the result of
overwork and no mental recreation. I tell you, sir, all the medicine in
the world will do you no good till you quit that and cultivate
laziness. You must take a more cheerful view of life. And you must
learn to laugh, not giggle a little, but laugh away down to the bottom
of the abdomen. Then you will get well. I used to be a little, scrawny,
sallow, nervous, overworked thing like you are, but I saw it was going
to kill me, and I quit it and went to laughing, and now see what I am?"
And this was all the prescription he gave me. There is, doubtless, a
good deal of philosophy in it.

At Glendale a rather singular circumstance occurred. The first night of
the meeting, I observed a very intelligent looking lady in the
audience, and she was intensely interested. When we got back to the
place where I was stopping, I asked the sister who this lady was. She
gave her name, stating that she was the pride of the Methodist Church
in that country; that her talk at the love-feast a few weeks before had
been the topic of conversation ever since. I remarked that she would
not be a Methodist when that meeting was over. But they would not
listen to the idea that she would ever be anything but a Methodist. She
was present the second and third nights, and manifested the same
intense interest. The next morning early, she sent to ascertain if she
could have a private interview. When she came, she made her business
known at once. She wanted to learn if I would immerse her and let her
remain in the M. E. Church. Without answering her question, I asked her
what she wanted to be immersed for. She said she had become convinced
that she had never obeyed the gospel, and she wanted to be immersed
because it was the Saviour's will, and her sprinkling was not
authorized. "Well," said I, "why do you want to correct your life in
some things according to the divine authority, and not in others?" She
said she wanted to correct it in all respects where it was contrary to
divine authority. I then told her that there were a number of things in
the Methodist Church for which there was no more authority than there
is for infant baptism. She inquired what, and when I told her, she
said, "That will do," and right away I immersed her. She had been
brought up a Romanist, and while we were gone to the baptizing her
sister burnt her Bible. No special persecution followed her change to
the Methodists, but it was otherwise when she united with us. Her
relatives, so far as known to me, have never become reconciled.

The meeting at Madisonville, O., eighteen miles from Cincinnati, also
had a peculiar feature which I think worthy of mention. It was the
first preaching by our brethren ever heard in the place, and most of
those who made the confession had never before heard it made. The first
person called upon to make it answered aloud and distinctly: "Yes, sir;
I believe with my whole heart that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the
living God." All who followed answered in the same way. I wish it could
always be so.

In 1878 calls upon me to conduct meetings were multiplied, but I could
comply only with those from Vevay, Ind., Sonora, Ky., Dover, White's
Run, Columbia, Burksville, Glendale, Oakland and Owenton.

At Sonora, a Methodist preacher attended a few times, and he was
remarkably fractious. Several times he interrupted me. One night, in
preaching on the "Plan of Salvation," commenting on the case of the
jailer, I remarked that the fact that the apostles sometimes baptized
households, was no evidence that they baptized infants, since there are
many households without infants. He spoke up very much excited, saying,
"May I ask you a question?" I told him yes. "Well, now," he says,
"suppose we take a common sense view of that matter. Suppose you were
to come to town, and start out to baptizing households, and you were to
go to Bro. Creel's house and mine, wouldn't you have to baptize
infants?" (Bro. Creel had five little fellows, and he seven.) I
answered, "Yes, Bro. Campbell, I admit that whenever you go to a
preacher's house, you are very apt to find them." The whole house
laughed outright, and they never ceased laughing at that preacher till
he left the circuit.

These meetings were all successful in the way of additions, except that
at Vevay. But I have never kept an account of my additions, and
remember the number at only a few meetings.

This year my regular evangelistic work closed on account of editing the
_Guide_ and preaching half the time at Portland Avenue Church, in
Louisville.

In January, 1879, I established the _Old Path Guide_, in Louisville. I
was owner, proprietor, editor, bookkeeper, treasurer, mailing clerk,
general agent, and special "boss." This required all my time, except
what I had necessarily to give to preaching on the Lord's day and the
preparation therefor. The _Guide_ was a success, financially, from
the beginning. I put money in bank the first three months of each year
to pay every dollar of expense to the end. The net profits the first
year were over $600, and this increased each year for the three years
that I managed it all myself. The third year would have netted $1,000,
but in the midst of it I made the change, transferring one-half of it
to Cline, Marrs & Co., and giving them control of its business
management. This was the beginning of financial embarrassment. The
change was demanded by my failing health, and I could no longer do
everything, as I had been doing from the first.

That year I engaged to preach half my time for the Portland Avenue
Church. In order to serve the Glendale church, which is fifty miles on
the Louisville & Nashville road, the Mt. Byrd church released me one
Sunday in the month. During the year the Portland Avenue Church
increased 120 per cent.

In February, 1879, I held a meeting for the Campbell St. church,
Louisville. The meeting proved to be quite beneficial to the
congregation, in many respects. I boarded in the city during the
winter, and moved my family down in April.

The church at Glendale had a partnership house--a very common thing in
all Southwestern Kentucky. This prevented their meeting regularly on
the Lord's day, and also prevented a Sunday-school, as the house was
occupied more than half the time by others. Knowing that I could
accomplish no substantial and enduring good while this state of things
lasted, I made it a condition of preaching for them that they build a
new house. This they did. The house is a neat frame, well finished
inside and out, and large enough for all ordinary use. It was promptly
built and paid for.

In November I held a debate there--the first use made of the new
house--with I. W. Bruner, a Baptist preacher. The Baptist church there
and ours arranged for a debate, on certain specified propositions, and
each had the privilege of selecting its representative. Consequently I
had nothing to do with getting up the debate or arranging for it. I
never challenged a man for debate in my life, and never held one except
by special invitation. And I have declined more debates than I ever
held. While I was peculiarly fond of it, I never debated simply for the
sake of debating; hence, if the circumstances were not favorable for
good results, I always declined. This debate with Mr. Bruner was, I
think, the poorest one I ever held, and I lost all interest in it
before it was half over.



CHAPTER XVII.

Visits Midway. Attends the Missouri State Convention. Reflections.
Annual Sermons. Last Protracted Meeting. Kindness of Mt. Byrd, Glendale
and Smithfield Churches. Gives up Office Work. Goes to Eureka, Ill.
Country Home. Takes Cold at the Lexington Convention. Goes to Florida.


In October, 1879, I visited Midway, and though I had virtually closed
my evangelistic labors when I began the _Guide_, I could not resist the
desire to hold a meeting there. It is the seat of our Female Orphan
School, one of our grandest enterprises. Bro. Shouse was then preaching
for the church and Bro. Lucy was president of the school. Their
companionship was highly enjoyable. What a feast to the soul is the
companionship of wise, godly men! It has for me the highest happiness I
expect to know this side of heaven. And will it not be a very prominent
factor of that which constitutes heaven? Any place in the universe of
God where my brethren and the Saviour are will be heaven enough for me.

In 1880 I continued at the Avenue Church, Louisville, Mt. Byrd and
Glendale. The State Board of the Missouri Christian Missionary Society
invited me to deliver an address before the State Convention, held that
year at Moberly. In order to justify me in a visit to the State, they
arranged several meetings for me--one in connection with the convention
of Audrain county, at a country church near Mexico, called Sunrise; one
at New London, and one at Slater. These meetings were all enjoyable and
profitable; but the one in Audrain county was only for a few days, and
resulted in but few additions.

The address at Moberly was on "Our Strength and Our Weakness." The
convention was largely attended, and it was a great pleasure to meet so
many brethren known only by name, and loved for their work's sake, and
to renew the acquaintance of others known before.

The addresses of Haley, Procter, Jones and others were very able. That
of Jones was speculative, and the basic principle of it, in my opinion,
erroneous. Several of those Missouri preachers have done much harm by
preaching a false philosophy instead of the gospel of Christ. Bro.
Procter, whom we all allow to be one of our best men and ablest
preachers, went from this convention to California and held several
meetings. Within a few months I had several applications to come out
there to undo some of his work, and I should have been glad to comply
had my other duties permitted.

In 1881 I resigned at the Avenue Church, as they needed more pastoral
labor than my other duties would allow me to perform. I gave half my
time to Mt. Byrd, one-fourth to Glendale, and one-fourth to my old home
church--Pleasant Hill, in Oldham county. It was a pleasure to visit
these old friends of my youth once a month. Old memories were revived,
and the past, in a sense, lived over again. Besides, several members of
the families related to my wife and to myself were enabled to attend.
To preach to them, after years of separation, was a great pleasure. Mt.
Byrd moved on in the even tenor of its way, in a prosperous condition.

In August of this year, and also the year previous, I preached the
annual sermon at the Clark county, Ind., Coöperation Meeting. The
county contains sixteen or eighteen churches, including those of
Jeffersonville and New Albany, and for more than forty years they have
had an annual county meeting. Representatives from all the churches
attend, as a rule, and the condition, etc., of each church is given. It
brings together a great congregation, and the day meetings are held in
the woods.

In September of this year the _Guide_ was changed to a weekly. While
the monthly magazine was the most desirable for preservation, it was
thought that a weekly would best serve the cause of Christ, and
peculiar circumstances at that time seemed to demand it.

In November I went to Poplar Plains and held the last protracted
meeting of my life. It was a pleasant one, and attended with some good
results.

In 1882 I preached at Mt. Byrd, Glendale and Smithfield, that is, I
engaged to preach for these churches, but my health was such that I
preached but little to any. At my first visit to Smithfield, the first
Lord's day in the year, I was taken sick, and I never visited them once
when I was not sick. I was never able to so preach as to do them or
myself justice. While this was equally so at the other churches, I did
not regret it so much, since I had been laboring for them a long time.
The work at Smithfield was virtually a failure, and early in the fall I
had to give it up entirely. Yet they paid me for the whole year, and
made me a present of about $150 besides. They are a noble band of
brethren, and one of the most liberal I ever knew.

The church at Glendale also paid for the entire year, though I lost
much time and resigned in October. It also made me a generous present
in addition.

Speaking of their generosity, reminds me that the Mt. Byrd Church
continued my salary three or four years when I was able to do little or
nothing in return. In 1876 I lost most of the year through spinal and
rheumatic affections; I did very little in 1882; I was in the church
but once in 1883, and in 1884 I attempted to talk only a few times, yet
all these years my salary continued. When the _Guide_ was sold to the
present Guide Printing and Publishing Company, which relieved me of
financial embarrassments which the failure of C. C. Cline & Co. had
produced, I refused to longer accept support from the church.

In April, 1882, I was compelled, on account of failing health, to give
up the office work of the _Guide_. I had been under a physician all the
year, and grew constantly worse. I allowed the office work to make a
heavier draft on me than some men do. I always knew every paragraph
that was going into the paper, and where and how it would appear. I
stood by the foreman and noticed everything that went in--when it went
in, what was put in and what was left out--till the forms were locked
up. I have never been able to get any one else to do it. But that is my
idea of editing a paper. This thing of giving printers a mass of matter
and telling them to put it in, leaving them to add or diminish, and put
in where and what they please, is simply a burlesque on the business;
and yet this is the way it is largely done. I have had no little
annoyance over just that thing. Had I been willing to edit in that way
I could have continued, but I would not consent to follow such a
course.

In May I went to Eureka College, to preach the baccalaureate sermon. I
arranged to make the trip as easy as possible, on account of my
feebleness, by stopping over at Indianapolis for the night, in both
going and returning. The trip was every way pleasant, and the
associations there very agreeable. I hoped it would be a benefit to me
in the way of recreation, but on reaching home I was taken down with
typho-malarial fever. I was quite low for several weeks. I got up with
a trouble in my throat, causing a constant coughing and hacking, which
has increased without intermission to the present time.

In September, realizing that my health was permanently broken down, we
went back to our country home. I was satisfied that if I should even
continue to edit the _Guide_, I would not be able to assume the
responsibilities of the office, and that the best place for me, under
the circumstances, was my country home. After going back to the country
I rallied considerably, and attended the General Convention, at
Lexington, about the 20th of October. Here I took life memberships in
both the General and Foreign Societies for the Mt. Byrd Church. This
was the first church taking membership in those societies, so far as I
am informed. It has since become quite common. Last year (1884) I
succeeded in getting their constitutions so amended as to provide for
this.

I took cold at the convention, and relapsed. My physicians were very
fearful of tubercular trouble, and advised me to go to Florida for the
winter. We went the first of December, not knowing whither we went, but
it seems that the hand of Providence guided us. We knew not where to
turn, but concluded to try DeLand, where we had some acquaintances, and
there look out for accommodations. In a few days after reaching DeLand
old Bro. Anderson, who lived two miles in the country, heard we were
there and came in for us. He had formerly seen a copy of the _Guide_
and subscribed for it. This good man rented for us a convenient house
near him, paid the rent, set us up, and would not allow me to pay for
anything we needed while there if he knew it and could prevent it. His
wife was as kind as he, and did all in her power to make our stay in
"The Land of Flowers" comfortable and inexpensive.

The Great Teacher has said, in a well-known passage, "It is more
blessed to give than to receive." What, then, must not have been the
blessedness of this pious couple in thus caring for a poor broken-down
invalid and his family, whom Providence had guided to their hospitable
home? May God reward them richly for their kindness.



CHAPTER XVIII.

Organizes a Church at DeLand. Health Improves. Relapses. Starts Home.
Resignation. Sells His Interest in the _Guide_. Begins Writing again.
Attends Two Conventions. Goes to Texas. At Home Again. Works On.


While at DeLand we gathered up the few scattered Disciples in and
around the town, and organized them into a church. I felt quite
confident, from the character of the material, that the enterprise
would be a success. It has thus far proved to be so; they have not
failed to keep up their weekly meetings to break the loaf and edify one
another after the apostolic model. They now have a nice house, and have
employed a preacher and given him a home among them. This is just what
all churches should aim to do; all may not be able, but they should aim
to accomplish it. The church is in a prosperous condition. I was able
to talk to them occasionally while there.

The climate of Florida agreed with me. My cough left me in a few weeks,
my appetite became good, and I got heavier than I ever was before. I
went there weighing 130 pounds, and increased to 148. In good health,
my usual weight was 144 pounds, and it had been many years since I
weighed that. I should have come home in this improved condition but
for my own imprudence. I don't blame the country, Providence, nor
anything else but myself. I was passionately fond of hunting, as I have
ever been. I hunted a great deal, and frequently got overheated, and
took cold; sometimes got my feet wet when in the woods. Thus I had
several backsets. But still I was in that condition when the time came
to return home. The day before we were to start, I concluded I must
have one more hunt. It had rained the night before; the sand was damp;
it was cloudy, quite warm, and a strong south wind was blowing. I would
get warm in walking (the sand there is very slavish to walk in), and
would sit down and let the wind cool me off. I should have had more
discretion; but sometimes people act with very little sense about such
things. Before I reached the house I felt acute inflammation of the
mucus membrane, to the bottom of my lungs. In three hours fever set in,
and I was completely prostrated. I remained there about three weeks,
and the doctors urged my return as the only chance of recovery. They
considered that very hazardous, on account of exposure to cold; but to
stay there was less hopeful. I was taken to the boat, carried on board
by two men, then carried off at Jacksonville to a hack, taken to a
hotel, thence to the train. I secured a good berth in a sleeper, and
got through without the least trouble. I improved, every mile of the
way; but as soon as I got home I went down again, and was extremely low
for some time.

My dread of dying in Florida and having my wife return with my body,
was such that I concentrated all my prayers to that one point. I prayed
the Lord to enable me to get home, that I might die in the midst of my
family. I felt and prayed that if He would enable me to reach home, He
could have the rest all His own way, without any further petition. He
enabled me to rally, gave a week of the best weather of the whole
season, brought me home under the most favorable circumstances, and I
never afterwards felt free to ask Him to restore me to health, and have
never done it. It may be wrong, but I promised to let Him have the rest
all His own way, and my prayers have ever since conformed to that idea.

I never could have believed, till I experienced it, that one could
become so indifferent as to whether he lived or died, I saw many days,
after my return from Florida, when it was a matter of perfect
indifference to me; previous anxiety to get home, and the resolution to
leave all the rest to the Lord, had no doubt much to do with it. I
observed this, however: that as hope revived, a desire to live would
arise in proportion. When there was little or no prospect, there was
little or no concern.

When I was at my worst, I decided, taking my past and present condition
into consideration, the medicine I was taking, the attention received,
etc., that if I did not take a turn for the better by a certain day,
then in three days the case would be entirely hopeless. In the
afternoon of that day the change came. That evening I took some
nourishment--the first for fourteen days.

After I sufficiently recovered to be able to do anything, I was anxious
to get my business arranged, with a view to death. I never expected to
be able to write another editorial, and I was concerned about making
some arrangement by which to get rid of the _Guide_ and its
responsibility. I was not pleased with its business management, and did
not want to leave it as the property of my family, not knowing what
trouble it might give nor what expense it might involve them in. And
without a change in management, I knew it could never be of any profit.
I wrote for Bro. Srygley to come, and I sold him my remaining
half-interest. My purpose was to resign, and thus have no further
connection with it. But he would not buy unless I would agree to let my
name remain, with a promise to resume the responsibility of chief
editor if I should ever get able; and the firm would consent to the
sale only upon these conditions. So I had to sell upon those
conditions, or not sell at all.

The latter part of September the company urged me to begin to write
again, if it were at all possible, even if it were only a few
paragraphs each week. They said the impression everywhere entertained
that I would not recover, was injuring the paper very much. The people
were losing interest in it. They insisted that I should counteract that
feeling as much as possible. Under this pressure, though confined to my
bed and suffering every hour, I began writing, the first of October,
and never after missed a week. That winter I stayed at home, and was
not out of my room for eight months. The last of August I started to
Midway, to see Dr. Lucy. I got as far as Louisville, and could get no
further. We dispatched for the Doctor, and he came down. After resting
a few days I got home, the last of August, and I was not out of the
door again till the last of April. During that winter I did a large
amount of writing, besides my weekly work on the _Guide_.

June 10 I went to Louisville to attend the International Sunday-school
Convention, but was able to get out only a few times. I attended the
State meeting at Paris, but was able to take no part. I greatly enjoyed
meeting with the brethren, and hearing them concerning the things of
the kingdom of God. These convocations are seasons of refreshing from
the presence of the Lord.

The first of October we went to Mason, in South-west Texas, to spend
the winter. Here, as at De Land, it looked as if the hand of Providence
guided us. We knew no one there, but we found some of the dearest and
best friends of our lives. They had been taking the _Guide_, and, in
competition with several other places that wanted us, made such a
liberal offer that our trip cost us nothing. They seemed to anticipate
all our wants, and find great pleasure in supplying them. The Lord has
always blessed me with many good friends--more than I deserved. I have
felt, for a number of years, that I was greatly overestimated, and it
has been a source of no little humiliation. I should have quit
editorial work several years ago, and lived in obscurity here at my
retired home, if I could have done so. I appreciate the good opinion of
my brethren, to the extent that I think it is merited; but to realize
that I am not what I am thought by some to be, is a great
mortification.

I am now at home enjoying the company of my family, the quiet of my
home, with every want anticipated and supplied by a devoted wife and
children, pleasantly, though in much feebleness, doing my work on the
_Guide_, and putting in my spare time in other writing. I find my
greatest pleasure in being about my Father's business. I must be
employed. I expect to thus work on till the Master says, "It is
enough."

MT. BYRD, Ky., June 13, 1885.



CHAPTER XIX.

Reflections on his Fiftieth Birthday. What a Wonderful Being is
Man! Governed, not by Instinct, but by Reason. Man Lives by Deeds, not
Years. How to Grow Old. Half of Life Spent in Satan's Service. Renewed
Consecration. Last Three Birthdays. His Trust in God.


The seventh day of March has come again. Fifty times has come this
anniversary of my natal day! Half a hundred years old to-day! What a
period through which to carry the burdens and responsibilities of life!
(What a time for which to give account to God for wasted moments and
opportunities lost!) What a period to be devoted to building a
character for the skies! What a period of time devoted to the issues of
eternity!

What a wonderful being is man! Time is but his cradle, from which he
walks forth into a world where life is parallel with the ages of God.
An intelligent, expansive being that will never cease to be--what a
thought! When the sun grows gray with age, his eye is dimmed, and
darkness reigns, man will still be drinking in the light of heaven from
the morning star of eternity. The century-living crow doubles this
period of man's probation, with life as it began. She builds her nest
the last year, as she did the first, with no improvement sought. She
rears her young the hundredth time as she did the first, by the long
experience none the wiser. This is her nature. God made her thus.
Instinct is wonderful, but it never improves. It grows not wiser with
age nor the ages. It nothing from experience learns. The sparrow builds
her nest, and the beaver his dam, just as they did in the years before
the flood. The little quails an hour from the shell, will hide at the
danger-signal of the mother bird, when they never saw a hawk, nor heard
of one's existence. How different this from man! More helpless than the
stupid beast, and more senseless than the creeping worm, he starts to
make the pilgrimage of life. But what a change does time produce! The
child more helpless than the humming insect of an hour, becomes the
monarch of the world. He bridles the lightning in its home above the
mountain peaks, and makes it do his bidding. The terror of the ages
past, becomes his willing servant. He harnesses the steam, that for
ages spent its power in the open air, and with it moves the world. He
sends his whisperings through old ocean's bed, where the great
leviathan sports, as if he talked to one across the room. He leaps
aloft as if on steady wing, till his look is downward where the
lightnings play and the thunderbolt leaps to its deadly mission.
Wonderful development! The heavens declare the glory of God, and the
earth proclaims the dominion of man. He was made a little lower than
the angels, and crowned with majesty. Age counts with man, and years
bring knowledge, but not unfailing wisdom. Did man grow wise with age,
as a sure result, age should be an unfailing blessing sought. But
imbecility it often brings and childish discontent. These are the
blighted sheaves of evil sowing in the spring and summer days of life.
With right ideas of life, men grow wiser and better, as they older grow
in the service of their God. Life is not measured simply by the flight
of time. Men live more now than they did before the flood. Intenser
now is _life_. Into a few decades, is now crowded the patriarch's
experience of nearly a thousand years. How to grow old, is a problem
not to be despised. It should not be left to solve itself. To grow old
gracefully, is to make a picture on which the world delights to look.
But, alas! how sadly blurred is the picture by many made! It is sad to
see one's religion sour with age. While young and strong the loved
disciple on the bosom of the Master leaned. Then when age had dimmed
his eagle eye, and time had stolen his elastic step, he had the same
love for his children in the faith. His was a sweet old age, the
outgrowth of a life of faith and love. He grew old gracefully. When
brought, as was his wont, and before his congregation set, his last
sermons were mainly the touching, tender words, "My little children,
love one another." O, that his mantle could on many of us fall! But
oft, alas! we see grow cross, self-willed and sour the shepherd of the
flock. This, too, when age should give his words both weight and
wisdom. Lord, give me poverty and affliction, if it be thy will, but
save me, I pray, from this sad end. Far better that one die young,
than grow old against the grain. "Is life worth living?" the sages ask.
That depends on how one lives it. Lived aright, it is worth living, and
many such worlds as this beside. Otherwise 'tis not. Of right living,
the more the better; of wrong, the less. The life lived faithfully to
God, can never be too long; its opposite, too short.

Of the half-century, this day gone, one claim I can safely make--it was
not spent in idleness. The years to Satan's service given, were well to
his account put in; and those devoted to a better cause, I have tried
to give as faithfully to Him to whom they all belonged. For the years
in Satan's service spent, like Saul of Tarsus, I conscientious
ignorance plead. O'er eyes unused to heaven's light, sectarianism's
vail was thick. But no sooner was known the way of life, than in its
path I tried to walk; and in it have I tried to keep, till this good
day. Thus equally divided has the time been spent. Except the years of
childish innocence, twenty-five were in the service spent of him who
for this life pays the soul in spurious coin, and leaves it bankrupt in
the life beyond; while an equal number, praise the Lord, have a better
Master claimed. For the rest of life, be it long or short, the long
side will the right side be, while hitherto it otherwise has been. The
periods of service have not before been equally divided, nor will they
be again. But the sides have changed proportions, praise the Lord!
Should not this turning-point in life an epoch make? A half century,
and a half divided life, in one! Surely I shall not look upon its like
again.

The past few birthdays I have noted as those of former years were noted
not, and for reasons I need hardly state. The first that deep
impression on the mind did make since apprehension was that each would
be the last, was three years ago, amid the orange groves of the sunny
South. The day was lovely as the Queen of May; and friends more lovely
than the day, made it a time not to be forgotten. The feasting of the
outer man was the lesser part of the day's enjoyment. "The feast of
reason and the flow of soul" was chief. Three of us were seeking health
in that sunny land. Two have found it, but not there. In a fairer land
by far than this world can boast, did they find the fountain of
perpetual health. Beneath the branches of the tree of life, have they
also sat and plucked its leaves for the healing of the nations given.
I, the feeblest of the three, and thought the nearest to the other side
to be, on the shores of time am struggling still. Thus it is with man's
poor guessing.

Two years ago the day was cold and bleak. It drizzled through the
dreary hours, freezing as it fell. But to many loving hearts, its sleet
and rain were not its gloom. On this day was laid to rest in Mother
Earth the loved remains of one numbered in the health-seeking trio of
the year before. What a contrast with that day one year before! The day
and its events, how sadly changed! But such is life. Well do I remember
on this asking, "Shall I another birthday live to see?" And well do I
remember, too, the thought expressed in grave response. While, in the
providence of God, it was possible, of course, the other way were all
the probabilities. But this so oft before the case had been, it left a
ray of hope. And that has now been more than realized. As said our
sweetest poet, how truly can we say:

    "God moves in a mysterious way
    His wonders to perform."

One year ago, in the balmy breezes of the "Lone Star" State, compelled
was I by feebleness of frame to miss the sumptuous feast by loving
hands so deftly spread. And sad, yet happy thought, those as ever ready
on the poor to wait, are now in those of the Master clasped. And still
I linger, and the years go by. Such is life. Deep and many are her
mysteries. God knows it all, but he keeps it to himself. But what are
now the prospects for the year to come? Better now, by far, than they
before have been in all these dreary years of pain. Would it not be
strange, if once again in providence divine I should mingle with my
fellow men, and tell them, as of yore, the story of the cross? Indeed,
it would; but stranger things have happened. Stranger things by
providence divine have come to pass without the aid of "Warner's Safe
Cure," or other disgusting humbuggery, with its offensive intrusion
into the reading of decent men. The providence of God is not dependent
on patent nostrums; nor is He limited in His healing power to calomel
or blue mass. Prayer is oft more potent than all the noxious drugs of
man's device. God has promised, when consistent with His holy will, the
prayers of His believing children to hear and bless. And in numbers
more by far than this poor life is worth, have these from earnest,
pleading souls gone up to God. Hence to-day we rest in the cheering
hope that these have not been in vain.

Should it please the Lord to give the health I need to fight again the
battles of Christian life, what responsibilities will it bring! That
strength must all be counted His who gave it. All those years must be
wholly His, His cause to serve. The interests of His kingdom to His
children left, must be strictly guarded. Conflicts with men, even those
we love, will come to him who strictly guards the faith, as Jude
directs. In all conflicts with fellow men, for two good graces I humbly
pray--the courage of Paul and the gentleness of John.

This holy Lord's-day morning, the sun rose bright and charming as on
the seventh day of March it did three years ago in the sunny land of
Florida. For the first time in many weary months did I a whiff of the
outside air inhale. Oh! how delicious! 'Twas like a prisoner's whiff of
the air of freedom. But this was not the best. To sit again with the
brethren around the table of the Lord and hear again the sweet old
story that is forever new, what a feast to the hungry soul! Then the
birthday feast is next to be enjoyed. Loved ones gathered at the dear
old "cottage home" to celebrate the marked event with music, song and
recitation.

The birthday cakes and other "dainty tricks" by loving hands prepared
and sent to grace the festive board, told tales of love. One thing
alone marred the pleasure of the day and checked the overflow of its
cup of bliss: Two loved and loving ones were far away and disappointed
in their hope of being here. These would have made the ring complete,
the family circle whole. But such, again, is life. Its disappointments
will forever come. We should expect them, therefore, and be content.

This is my fiftieth milestone along life's rugged road. At this
half-century mark I set up a pillar, as did Jacob of old.

    "Here I'll raise my Ebenezer,
      Hither by Thy help I've come,
    And I hope, by Thy good pleasure,
      Safely to arrive at home."

Thus far in life has a loving Father led me, and in his providential
care I trust for all the rest. I place my trusting hand in His, asking
to be led as He sees the way. "Guide me, O Thou great Jehovah," shall
be my constant prayer. And thus, dear Father, the rest of life I leave
with thee.

    Dear Lord, should birthdays more be mine
      To spend on earth to Thee,
    Thy cause shall claim them wholly Thine
      As earnest work can be.

    And should'st Thou will the next be one
      In Thy bright home above,
    I gladly say, "Thy will be done,"
      And join Thee in Thy love.

COTTAGE HOME, March 7, 1886.



CHAPTER XX.

Conclusion by the Editor. Tokens of Love from Many. Keeps Writing.
Controversy with the _Standard_. Last Meeting with His Mother. Visited
by Professors McGarvey and Graham. Commits His Writings to the Latter.
Visits Eminence and Lexington. Many Brethren Come to See Him. Meeting
at Mt. Byrd. Estimate of His Character. The Closing Scenes. Farewell to
His Family. Dies. Funeral Services.


The foregoing autobiography closes with June 13, 1885, while the life
of the author was prolonged till January 6, 1887, and it remains for
the editor to record a few of the incidents transpiring in the
interval; and to bring this remarkable recital to a close.

Midsummer found Bro. Allen in his "Cottage Home," at Mt. Byrd, growing
weaker in body day by day, but with no very acute suffering. Everything
that devoted love on the part of his family and church could suggest
for his comfort was done; and there were not wanting from abroad many
tokens of undying affection, as it became generally known that he was
gradually but surely passing away. Many of his friends, and especially
preachers, came to Mt. Byrd as to a Mecca, to find their pilgrimage
repaid in the fresh inspiration received by communing with this saintly
man. The company of his brethren did not weary him; on the contrary, it
seemed to have a favorable effect on both his body and mind; he greatly
desired the visits of his friends, and found comfort in them. Still
many were deterred from going to see him for fear it might disturb the
quiet which they hoped would contribute to lengthen out his days.
Meanwhile he kept writing with a diligence and persistence marvelous to
those who witnessed it, and incredible to others; so much so, that many
at a distance could not understand how one so near the grave could
continue to write so much and so well; hence the hope entertained that
he might survive for years to bless the church and the world. It must
be remembered that his disease never affected his mind, and that, like
most persons who die of consumption, he retained the full possession of
his mental faculties even unto the end. Besides, he was sustained by an
indomitable will that hesitated at nothing that stood in the way of
duty; added to which was an unfaltering trust in God and a joyous
resignation to His will, causing him to cease praying for longer life.
Propped up in an invalid chair with a convenience of his own invention,
he continued his weekly editorials to the _Guide_ as regularly as ever,
and developed abilities as an editor that none suspected he possessed
till the last years of his life.

It was at this time that the unfortunate controversy began between the
_Guide_ and the _Standard_ about our work in London, England, causing
so much regret on the part of many friends of both papers. It was
feared by some that this controversy would work irreparable injury to
our mission enterprises, not only in England, but in other lands, for
we all realized that Titans were engaged in the conflict; men, not like
those of old, giants in physical strength and daring, but of
intellectual power intensified by the love of God and his cause. Of
course the disputants viewed the matter from different angles, and
both, we must think, were equally sincere in their convictions. The
present writer was not of those who thought upon the whole harm would
come of this dispute, though he deeply regretted the asperity with
which it was conducted. In our present imperfect state we need, I doubt
not, these conflicts to remind us of our frailty, and if only we have
grace to profit by them, God will turn them to our good and to His own
glory. It is a source of devout thankfulness to those who knew Bro.
Allen's unselfish purpose, that many who censured his course united
with multitudes who approved it in paying honor to his memory, when the
messenger who ends all earthly strifes called him to his final account.

In July, 1885, his aged and revered mother made him a visit, and
remained some time; it was their last meeting; and now that her gifted
son has gone to his reward, she waits in joyous hope for the day that
shall reunite them forever.

A few weeks later it was the pleasure of the writer, in company with
Prof. McGarvey, to spend two days at Mt. Byrd, in delightful fellowship
with this grand man. He had been apprised of our coming, and was
prepared for it. Truly, to him and to us it was a foretaste of the joys
of the future world, and we left him the same resolute, confiding
servant of Christ he had ever been, wholly resigned to the will of God
and rejoicing in assured hope of eternal rest.

It pleased his Master to protract his life and usefulness a little
longer, and so 1885 closed, and we find him still with his family,
receiving many tokens of love from them and from brethren far away.
Spring comes, and birds and flowers; the bright sunshine beams into his
chamber, and now and then he is barely able to walk out to see and feel
his Father's goodness bathing all things in quiet beauty. He repines
not, knowing that "our light affliction, which is but for a moment,
worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory."

He continues to write, and with the rest the preceding chapter of
"Reflections on his Fiftieth Birthday." He commits it, his diary, and
other writings to me, with the request that I do with them as I think
best, for now he is sure that this unequal contest with mortality can
not last much longer.

Summer comes, and with it increasing weakness, but no diminution of his
trust in God. He wishes to visit Eminence once more, and to see his two
younger daughters graduate from the college that had helped himself in
former years. He attends, and then, unable to walk without help, he
comes on to Lexington, to spend commencement week among his friends and
brethren; this done, he returns to his beloved Mt. Byrd, to leave it no
more till he goes to stand with the redeemed on the Mount of God.

During the fall of this year hardly a week passed that several of his
relatives and Christian brethren were not found at his home; and did
not the limit of this chapter forbid, we would like to record their
names, for in love they came to testify their admiration for him and
their sympathy with his sorrowing family. For one and all he had a word
of cheer, and none came away without being deeply impressed with the
conviction that he had been with one of the purest and best of men--one
who lived in daily communion with his Maker. His one theme of
conversation was religion, and if we may judge from his increasing
delight in it, to no one was death a more gentle transition from faith
to sight. Narrow, indeed, to him was the bourn that divides the seen
from the unseen, the temporal from the eternal, and the labors of earth
from the felicities of heaven. He daily lived upon the boundary of two
worlds.

In October, Bro. J. K. P. South held a meeting with the Mt. Byrd
church, and, though feeble beyond measure, Bro. Allen made out to
attend a few times, and even to take part in prayer and exhortation,
sitting in his chair. Only twice after this was he able to be carried
to the Lord's house, but on neither occasion could he take an active
part in the worship.

In all the relations of life Bro. Allen was a model of all that is
lovable in human character--kind, gentle, considerate of the feelings
of others, even the least, and always cheerful. A refined and delicate
humor pervaded his conversation, which was always chaste and
instructive. There was in him a moderation that always attends reserved
power, and a candor that was transparent; these qualities, united with
an equipoise of intellectual and moral strength, harmony of emotions,
and hatred of everything mean or unfair, made him revered by his
friends, and an idol in his household. Wife, children, servants, all
who came into that charmed circle, were attached to him in a love that
bordered on idolatry. To draw a portraiture of this remarkable man
would indeed be a pleasing task did space allow--his logical
penetration, depth of feeling, strength of will, energy, industry,
unwavering faith in God and goodness, and, crowning all, his fidelity
to the gospel of Christ--but it is unnecessary. To us who knew him
these virtues were conspicuous; by others, they may be gathered from
the unvarnished story of his life as it is told in the foregoing pages.
We must hasten to the closing scene.

On New Year's day, 1887, he laid down his pen to resume it again no
more. He was forced to this by sheer exhaustion; his body was wasted to
a skeleton, and it was clear to all that the end was near. Having
suffered much for several days, but without a murmur, on the evening of
Jan. 5 he requested all his family to come to his bedside, and while
their hearts were breaking for grief and all eyes were blinded with
tears, he spoke to them for the last time.

"My dear children," said he, "I want to say a few things to you while I
can. I may not be able to do it if I put it off longer. I will soon
leave you, and I know you will miss me. It is hard for you to give me
up, but it is the will of God, and you must bear up as best you can. I
am sure I have always had your love, and you have always obeyed me; and
now I want you to always love and obey your mother. Remember, wherever
you may be, that you are all of one household. Live in peace, and let
no strife or discord spring up among you." Taking the hand of each of
his daughters, he asked them to meet him in heaven, and then kissed
them good-bye.

Laying his hand upon Frank's head, he said, "My dear son, papa has to
leave you." "O papa," said the lad, "pray not to die." "We have prayed,
my dear boy, but it is God's will to take me home, and He knows best.
You must love your mamma and obey her; be good to your sisters. I want
you to grow up and become a minister of the gospel. Try to make a
better preacher than your papa has been. Be studious and industrious,
and live so that you may at last meet me in heaven. May God bless you,
my son, and keep you in His care. Kiss me good-bye."

Throwing one arm around his wife, he said, "My dear, my affliction has
been a blessing to me in having you near me all the time. You have been
everything on earth that a good wife could be. I have loved you even
more in my affliction than I ever did before. I want to thank you for
all your kindness to me and loving care of me. If I have ever done or
said anything I should not, I want you to forgive me now. I can say on
my dying bed that I have always been a true husband to you. I have made
the best provision I could for you and the children, and if there
should appear any mistakes they have not been of my heart." He then
bade her a long and last farewell.

He then blessed his three little grandchildren and kissed them;
expressed a desire to see his "dear old mother," brother and sisters
once more, and spoke of some business matters a moment, then said,
"This is too sacred for that."

For two or three days before this he had been able to speak only a few
words at a time; but throughout this interview with his family, his
voice was as strong and clear as it had ever been. After this his
breathing became difficult, and he could gasp only a single word now
and then. He seemed to have no wish to be occupied with this world. The
weary traveler had at last reached the goal; and about nine o'clock
Thursday night, January 6, 1887, his pure spirit left its frail
tenement to suffer no more.

The following account of his funeral, written by his devoted friend and
Christian brother, W. K. Azbill, may well close the biography of Frank
Gibbs Allen:

    "IT IS FINISHED."

    It is finished. The struggle with his fatal malady is over at last,
    and F. G. Allen is at rest. He sank into a quiet sleep last
    Thursday night, Jan. 6, 1887.

    A few friends were notified of the end by telegrams, and that the
    burial would take place from Mt. Byrd Church on Sunday, but the
    condition of the Ohio River rendered it extremely difficult to
    reach "Cottage Home." However, in spite of the difficulties and
    dangers in crossing the river, and the extreme cold weather, there
    were seven ministers and a very large audience present at the
    burial. The people came over the snow and through the snow, in
    sleighs and sleds and buggies, afoot and on horseback, till the
    large country audience-room was well filled. The presence of such
    an assembly on such a day evinced the truth of what is now widely
    known, that Frank Allen was loved best where he has lived and
    labored for the past sixteen years.

    The services were begun by Bro. A. W. Kokendoffer, who lead in an
    invocation of divine blessing and strength and guidance. The
    congregation then sang "Nearer, My God, to Thee." The writer read
    the following Scriptures; John xiv. 1-4, 27, 28; I. Cor. xv. 51-58;
    I. Thess. iv. 13-18; II. Sam, iii. 31-39, repeating 38.

    He felt that he should not, because he could not speak on the
    occasion. He had followed the inclinations of his own grief, and
    had come as a mourner and not as a comforter. We had not met to
    tell how much we esteemed our departed brother, or how much we
    loved him, or how much we should miss him, now that he has gone.
    The gap is a wide one he has left in the family, in the
    congregation of his love, and in the larger church; and it will
    seem wider and wider as the days go by. We had come as his brothers
    and sisters--as those who loved him--to lay him away in the grave,
    and to ask God's help and blessing in this time of loss and sorrow.
    He then led in worship, thanking God for His gift to the church of
    the precious life that had just been surrendered at His call;
    praising God for His love of brave and true men like him;
    expressing the loving confidence of all that the heavenly Father
    would deal tenderly with our widowed sister and her children;
    asking especially that the little boy might live to honor the name
    of his beloved father, and praying that the dear church, that has
    borne him on their hearts through all this anxious time of weakness
    and suffering, might forever be blessed by the memory of his godly
    life in it.

    The song, "Asleep in Jesus," was then sung, after which President
    R. Graham, of the College of the Bible, addressed the audience on
    the life and character of the deceased.

    He had thought of how truly it might be said of him, that "There is
    a prince and a great man fallen this day in Israel." He had felt
    inclined to derive comfort for the church, and to those to whom he
    was doubly dear, from the passage in the Apocalypse, "I heard a
    voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which
    die in the Lord from henceforth; yea, saith the Spirit, that they
    may rest from their labors: and their works do follow them." He did
    not know whether others would be present to take part in the
    services. But Bro. Kurfees was here from the churches in
    Louisville, and, as a representative of the _Guide_, Bro.
    McDiarmid, from Cincinnati, to represent his associates in our
    other publishing interests, and Bro. Azbill, from Indianapolis,
    connected with our missionary interests, while he himself brought
    the sympathies of those in the College of the Bible. He felt there
    was a suitableness in all this, for all these things were dear to
    the heart of our brother.

    He then proceeded to give a sketch of his life and career. There
    were several distinct periods in his history. The first was from
    his birth, March 7, 1836, to his marriage in 1856, a period of
    about twenty years. Here he spoke of his early struggles for an
    education, and of the signs of a useful life manifested even then.
    The second, from the time of his marriage till his entry upon
    general evangelistic work, about 1866. During this decade he became
    a Christian, resolved to preach the gospel, and entered and passed
    through a course of collegiate studies in Eminence College. The
    third period began with his evangelistic labors. During this time
    he became a pastor of the Mt. Byrd church. During this period most
    of his public discussions were held. It was through these labors
    that he was revealed to his brethren as a man who was greater than
    we knew.

    The last period began with his editorial career, and closed with
    his death. He became first a contributing editor of _The Apostolic
    Times_, and afterwards co-editor. Then he became the proprietor and
    editor of _The Old-Path Guide_, which, in the course of events, was
    consolidated with the _Times_, and became _The Apostolic Guide_.

    President Graham then spoke of his character and his characteristic
    abilities. He was a sincere man, he was a conscientious man, he was
    a brave, true man; he was a pure-minded man, he was a godly man.

    His ability was not that of the great scholar, but of the logician
    of keen, accurate perceptions. He was not an encyclopedia, but a
    compact volume of naked logic. He was capable of the very nicest
    discriminations; and he had the faculty of pointing out a fallacy
    with marvelous clearness, and of turning an objection to his
    position into an argument in its favor.

    He was sometimes misunderstood; but he was always true to his
    convictions, and there was no honorable thing he would not do for
    the truth's sake. He believed in the gospel as the power of God
    unto salvation; and he made no compromises with doctrines in
    conflict with his conviction that the gospel must be believed and
    obeyed by those who would be saved.

    The speaker said many tender and fatherly things to the bereaved
    family and to the church, one of which was that we who knew of our
    brother's sufferings, could have had but the one motive of
    selfishness for detaining him an hour longer than he lingered with
    us.

    Bro. M. C. Kurfees followed the remarks of President Graham with
    some comforting reflections on Bro. Allen's views of death and of
    the future life. He spoke of his willingness "to depart and to be
    with Christ, which is far better." Heaven is not a far off place,
    but an actual spiritual presence with God. He spoke of the
    blessedness of being always ready for this change from our life in
    the body to our life with God in the invisible world.

    Bro. McDiarmid closed the services with suitable remarks and an
    earnest prayer. After the singing of the song, "Jesus, Lover of my
    Soul," came the final leave-taking, and the departure from the
    church to the grave. Not the least touching of these scenes was the
    breaking down in grief of the sturdy yeomen of the congregation as
    they stood around the bier of their dear brother and former pastor,
    and looked on that manly face and form for the last time.

    Finally we laid him to rest in the burying-place near by. At the
    grave the closing prayer was offered by Bro. Wm. Buchanan, who
    referred tenderly to his aged mother and absent relatives. And thus
    the final scenes closed.

    His resting-place is a lovely spot, overlooking the city of
    Madison, commanding an extended view of the river valley, and in
    sight of the stream and of all the vessels that go by. It is near
    to his "Cottage Home" and to the church he so much loved; and the
    spot will be all the dearer now that he sleeps in it.

    Only four days ago the writer said in a letter to the family: "I
    linger on the eve of taking a long voyage, and he may soon go on a
    very short one; but which of these shall be made the occasion of
    saying 'good-bye,' I hardly know." Even then the solitary voyager
    was on his way. The breakers dashed about him as he launched; the
    great billows roared beneath and around him as he went out; the
    waves broke over each other in ripples as he passed on; and the
    ripples hushed into whispers as he neared the other shore. At last
    he took the adorable divine Guide by the hand, and passed beyond
    our view.



PART II.--ADDRESSES.



I.--CULTURE AND CHRISTIANITY: THEIR RELATION AND NECESSITY.

[An Address Delivered Before Eminence College, June 8, 1877.]


There are periods in our history which form the oases in the desert of
life. In one of these our spirits are to-day refreshed. Its dark shade
and cooling fountain strengthen us for the onward pilgrimage. From its
green sward we pluck bright flowers, whose fragrance will linger with
us till the end of life's journey. From these let us to-day weave fresh
garlands, which shall ever exhale the sweetness of these associations.

This is ever a proud day for Eminence College. Annually on these
festive occasions do the hearts of the many thousands who have gone out
from these classic halls turn to them again with longing. Memory,
unfettered by space, walks again amid these lovely bowers and responds
unconsciously to the greetings of other days. Though separated far, and
mingling in the busy scenes of life, how their souls revel in these
delights! These college associations are the golden links which bind
many hearts in an unbroken chain. The chords so exquisitely touched in
our hearts to-day will vibrate for an age. Ere these sweet strains die
away on the distant air they will be caught up by responsive hearts and
reëchoed round the earth. These are times in our college life that must
ever be linked with the future. Memory will ever delight to lift the
heavy curtain of material life, and behold again these visions of
beauty, and paint in fancy these rose tints of youth. Then let this day
be one whose brightness shall shed a ray of celestial light along the
path of life. Let our spirits bathe in the fountain of living waters,
while the chords of our hearts are swept with entrancing melodies.

    "Then th' inexpressive strain
    Diffuses its enchantment. Fancy dreams
    Of sacred fountains and Elysian groves,
    And vales of bliss; the intellectual power
    Bends from his awful throne a wandering ear,
    And smiles."

As a theme worthy of your consideration to-day, I have selected

    "_Culture and Christianity: Their Relation and Necessity_."

The Greek word for man, [Greek: anthropos], signifies etymologically to
_look upward_. Man is the only terrestrial being capable of looking
inward and upward. In this there lies between him and the animal
creation an impassable gulf. Man alone can look into his inner nature,
and thereby make his very failures the stepping-stones to a higher
life. God designed that man's progress should be upward; hence his high
destiny is attained, not by creation, but by development. The ladder at
whose foot he begins his immortal career rests upon the eternal throne.
This is not a development _into_ man, but a development _of_ man. The
theory of development into man is of the flesh; but the development of
man is of the spirit. Since man is destined for eternity, it is not
befitting that he should attain perfection in time. Hence he does not
develop as the beast of the field, or the fowl of the air. They soon
learn all that they ever know. They soon enjoy all they are capable of
enjoying. They soon attain to the perfection of their being, and
fulfill the end of their creation. The swallow builds her nest and the
beaver his dam precisely as they did in the days before the flood. Nor
can it ever be otherwise. But it is not so with man. This life is too
short and this world too small for his development. He but begins to
live in this world. This life is simply a state of probation. Our
faculties but begin to unfold on the things of time when we are called
hence. This unfolding of our faculties, this development of our inner
self, is the result of culture--a culture not of the flesh, but of the
spirit; not of the outer, but of the inner man.

Culture and Christianity, properly considered, are inseparable. He who
relies on culture apart from Christianity misconceives the end of his
being. He appreciates not his high destiny. Animals have minds
susceptible of a high degree of cultivation, but not of a culture which
reaches beyond time. Their culture is wholly a thing of this life; but
not more so than is the culture of men unsanctified by the religion of
Christ. A culture that terminates with death is in harmony with the
nature of a horse, but contrary to the nature of a man. What is
culture? This is a question on whose solution man's eternal destiny is
largely suspended. Our age prides itself on being an age of culture;
but do we know in what true culture really consists? As a whole, I
think not. A smattering of sentimental literature, a superficial
refinement of manners, a few borrowed phrases and appropriated customs
of "society," the rendering of a few pieces by rote, and fashionable
dress, constitute with, alas! too many the standard of culture. How
unworthy of their race are those who entertain the thought! All this
may be but the gilding of barbarism; beneath this external glitter
there may be a heart and character steeped in moral rudeness and
degradation.

True culture consists not in the cultivation of outward accomplishments.
It consists not in intellectual acquirements. It consists in the
development of the triune man--body, soul and spirit--in their divine
harmony. Without a cultivation of the spirit in harmony with its
immortal destiny, all that this world calls culture is but the gilded
tinsel that bedecks the putrefaction of death. The truly cultured man
is developed in harmony with the laws of his being. This being is
compound, having a fleshly and a spiritual side. Hence, to cultivate
one to the neglect of the other is to disproportion him whom God
created in His own image. As we exist first in time and next in
eternity, that culture which loses sight of either state misconceives
the full mission of man. Man's conception of his present mission and
ultimate destiny determines his standard of culture. He must have an
ideal, and if that ideal be low, his life will be correspondingly low.
Nothing but Christianity can furnish man an ideal worthy of himself;
and nothing but Christian culture can develop him in the direction of
that ideal.

Classical antiquity never conceived a destiny worthy of man. It never
contemplated him in that relation of Christ-likeness to his God, which
the Bible reveals. Even Aristotle, the most cultivated of all heathen
philosophers, thought that only a part of mankind possessed a rational
soul. With such a conception man is incapable of the highest culture.
It is degrading to his dignity. All culture based on such a hypothesis
must be a culture of the flesh, and not of the spirit. It is the
culture of materialism, not of Christianity. Between modern materialism
and the cultivated heathenism of the ancient Greeks the difference is
not worth the naming. "To assume the existence of a soul," says Vogt,
"which uses the brain as an instrument with which to work as it
pleases, is utter nonsense. Physiology distinctly and categorically
pronounces against any individual immortality, and against all ideas
which are connected with a figment of a separate existence of the
soul." "Man," says Moleschott, "is produced from wind and ashes. The
action of vegetable life called him into existence.... Thought consists
in the motion of matter, it is a translocation of the cerebral
substance; without phosphorus there can be no thought; and consciousness
itself is nothing but an attribute of matter." This deification of the
flesh, this "gospel of dirt," makes man consist simply of what he eats.
The missionaries of this heathen gospel have no need to address the
reason of men; only feed them on the right kind of food and their
regeneration is accomplished! Materialism is a religion of the flesh, a
deification of matter; its laver of regeneration is the chemist's
retort; its new birth, phosphorus! Give the brain plenty of phosphorus
by high living, and you develop the _soul_ of materialism! Yet the
heralds of this soulless gospel talk flippantly about culture!

Man's fall was due to an attempt to acquire knowledge at the expense of
heart culture. Here, amid the bowers of "paradise lost" is found the
root of all false culture, and from that root the world has ever been
filled with a noxious growth. True culture consists in a correction of
the process which

    "Brought death into the world,
    And all our woe."

Man in his spiritual nature must be educated back to the divine image
from which he fell. No culture comprehending less than this has ever
proved a permanent blessing to the race. The highest culture hitherto
attained apart from Christianity was incapable of saving its devotees
from ruin. Greece and Rome were never more cultured, in a popular
sense, than when they began to go down in death. Materialistic culture
was their winding-sheet, and "A Religion of the Flesh" should be their
epitaph. As Christlieb has truly said: "Wherever civilization is not
made to rest on the basis of moral and religious truth it can not
attain to any permanent existence, and is incapable of preserving the
nations possessed of it from spiritual starvation, to say nothing of
political death."

It is idle to boast of Liberty when the foundations of her temples are
not laid in divine truth. Of this, Greece and Rome have furnished the
world examples. In Greece freedom had a field peculiarly her own; she
breathed her inspiration into the people, and her spirit into their
literature; she lived in the deeds of their youth, and was sung by the
muse of their bards. This spirit was diffused in Rome. Plato, Aristotle
and Homer were transplanted to the Rhine, the Seine, and the Thames.
Their land was full of liberty and culture, but not the liberty nor the
culture of the soul. When we learn from Tacitus that "in the first
century, in a time of famine, all the teachers of youth were banished
from the city, and six thousand dancers were retained," we have an
example of that culture which made Rome a sink of iniquity. It is not
impossible that the fatal mistake of Greece and Rome should be repeated
in our own country. We are venturing to some extent on the slippery
places from which they fell. The evil star of their national ruin is
that on which the eyes of many of our political leaders are fixed. The
godless spirit that animated the Roman senate is being nursed into new
life in American politics, and this nursing is not simply in the halls
of legislation, but in the homes of the people. Here lies the trouble.
If the American republic ever goes down in ruin, the power that hurls
it from its high position will be enthroned in the family circle.

We complain that those in authority have not the fear of God before
their eyes. We lift our hands in holy horror at the public corruption
which brings our nation into dishonor before the world. But who is to
blame? One political party is ever ready to ascribe all the corruption
of the country to its political rival. But this godless disregard of
national honor and national interest is confined to no party. Neither
is it confined to party leaders; but it controls the people on whom the
leaders rely for support. Here is the seat of the disease which is
gnawing at the vitals of the republic. The man who now refuses to cater
to the depraved tastes of the masses, can not, as a rule, be promoted
to office. How many men can sit in the halls of legislation, or even on
our benches of justice, who persistently refuse to influence men's
votes by money, or inflame their passions and sway their judgment with
strong drink? When a man of a high sense of moral honor seeks promotion
by the suffrage of his fellow-citizens, he soon learns that he must
come down from his "stilted dignity" or be defeated. In the excitement
of the canvass he yields to base motives to prevent defeat. He
compromises his high sense of honor, deadens his conscience, and sells
out his manhood to secure an honorable (?) position. We should not
expect men to manifest a high sense of honor in public places as long
as we require them to compromise their honor in order to secure such
places. The thing is both unreasonable and unjust. As well expect sweet
water to flow from a fountain which we have made bitter!

Party spirit is hostile to moral purity. As one becomes filled with the
spirit of party, to that extent does he surrender the freedom of a man.
He can neither think nor speak impartially. He stifles the convictions
of conscience and shouts the shibboleth of party. With him the triumph
of party is infinitely dearer than the maintenance of principle. Hence
the conflict becomes a struggle, not for principle, but for victory.
The people are distracted and the nation brought to the verge of ruin
over the most trivial matters. The Eastern empire was once shaken to
its foundation by parties which differed only about the merits of
charioteers at the amphitheater.

This ruinous party spirit is fostered by ignorance. The masses who are
controlled at the ballot-box by the basest influences, because they
will not be controlled by any other; and who in turn control the
ballots of our country, are, as a rule, the uncultured part of society.
The better class of citizens are not approached with the influences
which control the ignorant. Therefore, the remedy is in the _correct_
education of the masses. The emphasis is correctly made; for any kind
of education will not accomplish this end. Only as people are _truly_
cultured do they cease to be tools of politicians. Then their
intelligence, not their passions, must be addressed. When the masses
are thus cultured they will refine instead of demoralize our public
men.

As a remedy, then, for the demoralization of all classes we need a
better system of education. We must have a free education if we would
have a free people. Our children must be educated in just principles,
if we would perpetuate a just government. To make this remedy
effectual, when the means of education are provided for the ignorant,
they should be required to appropriate them, or forfeit their right of
suffrage. No man should have a voice in determining the destiny of our
nation, who rejects the means of that culture which alone can qualify
him to act intelligently. A man who has not spirit enough to avail
himself of the benefits of an elementary education, when placed within
his reach, is not worthy of being a citizen of a free government.

Not only must the ballot-box be elevated by culture, if this government
would number its centennials, but it must be purified by Christianity.
We need to erect a high standard of moral qualification for positions
of trust and honor. Those in authority will ever be about what the
people require of them. When ungodliness and moral corruption are at a
discount among the people, and party spirit can not atone for the
darkest crimes, then may we expect more purity in high places; not
before. This standard must be erected at the ballot-box or our
liberties will find an untimely grave.

This government was established on a false idea--the idea that man is
capable of self-government. God never intended that man should govern
himself. Consequently, in the strictest sense of the word, he is
incapable, both individually and collectively, of self-government.
Since, by his own wisdom, man is incapable of governing himself he is
likewise incapable of governing others. The men and the nations, in the
ages of the past, that attempted this, failed of the high destiny for
which God gave them being. The ultimate prosperity of men and nations
depends on the government of God. Only He who created man fully
understands his ultimate destiny and the laws of his being to attain to
that end. Therefore, only when man is thus governed is his life a
success. All sacred history shows that God rules in the governments of
men; and only when this fact is practically acknowledged may nations
expect permanent prosperity. That nation whose laws are framed and
executed regardless of the law of God will eventually fall under the
divine chastisement. No more can the statesmanship of this world,
unsanctified by divine wisdom, save a nation from the wrath of God,
than the wisdom of man can save a soul from eternal death, regardless
of Him, "who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and
sanctification, and redemption." For the disregard of God's will,
nations are punished here, because as nations they do not exist
hereafter. On this the Lord has clearly spoken: "At what instant I
shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up,
and to pull down, and to destroy it: If that nation against whom I have
pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I
thought to do unto them. And at what instant I shall speak concerning a
nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it: If it do
evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the
good, wherewith I said I would benefit them." Thus it is that nations
are in the hands of God as clay in the hands of the potter. Only,
therefore, when they purge themselves from ungodly legislation, will
they become "vessels unto honor, sanctified and meet for the Master's
use."

The voice of God, then, must be heard and heeded in our nation, and if
the people rule, and the nation prosper, the voice of God must become
the voice of the people. _In this sense, and this only, are any people
capable of self-government._ To this end we need more extended culture,
and that of a higher order. Our politics must be purified by our
religion, and our religion must be a religion of the spirit, not of the
flesh. We need more religion in our politics, and less politics in our
religion. The history of other nations fully confirms the language of
Goethe: "All epochs," says he, "in which faith prevailed have been the
most heart-stirring and fruitful, both as regards contemporaries and
posterity; whereas, on the other hand, all epochs in which unbelief
obtains its miserable triumphs, even when they boast of some apparent
brilliancy, are not less surely doomed to speedy oblivion." Liberty is
the twin sister of Faith. In the language of Seneca: "To obey God is
freedom. A nation that desires to be free must believe, and a nation
that will not believe must be in servitude; only despotism can dispense
with faith, but not liberty."

History clearly proves that national prosperity depends on an
appreciation of the intimate relation existing between culture and
Christianity. Of this relation Christlieb truly speaks: "No one,
indeed," says he, "will wish to deny that in our modern culture there
is much that is false, egotistic, and selfish; much that is misleading
and exaggerated, and consequently opposed to true culture. Against
these untrue elements of culture, Christianity will and must always
take the field; it must not oppose progress, although it is at all
times bound to show itself hostile to the _sins_ of progress, just as
from its very commencement it has always testified and striven against
such sins. Between Christless culture and Christianity a bridge of
accommodation can no more be built than between light and darkness, and
woe to him who undertakes this! But whatever in our modern culture is
thoroughly _Christless_, and therefore Godless, is unworthy of the
name and can, therefore, claim from us no further consideration; it is
mere naked rudeness and selfishness, ill-disguised by the gaudy rays of
outward decency; a mere cherishing of the sensual nature which, left to
itself, would soon degenerate into monstrous barbarism, of which we
already see many indications."

Intellectual, at the expense of moral, culture is one of the curses of
this age. By such culture man acquires power without the principles
which alone can make that power a blessing. Intellect is deified; but
intellect unsubdued by Christianity is a remorseless god. True culture
would lift man above this low conception of his own nature. It would
give him a more comprehensive view of himself; of the infinite
development of which he is susceptible; of the rulings of an all-wise
Providence, whose loving care

    "From seeming evil still educing good,
    And better thence again, and better still,
    In infinite progression."

True culture consists not in an accumulation of facts or ideas, but in
developing a force of thought that is ever a ready and willing servant.
To educate is to lead out and develop the faculties, not to break them
down with the endless rubbish of other minds. The collection of facts
amounts to but little unless with those facts we build towers from
which to take higher and wider views of truth. Thus it is that culture
demands them as a means, not as an end. To build up the mental and
moral faculties, so as to comprehend and appreciate the great
principles which control the life that now is, and that which is to
come, is the highest culture in our probationary state. This can be
accomplished only by an education in which the Bible and the _authority
of Christ_ are made paramount. On this, as we have seen, our free
institutions and the perpetuity of religious liberty depend. This is
the secret of Roman Catholic opposition to the Bible in our public
schools. And it is not simply the Bible in the public schools that Rome
opposes; she is opposed to the existence of the schools themselves; to
the system of free education. No people understand better than the
Catholics the power of religious teaching in connection with education.
Hence they are the foe to all religion in connection with education
that is not Catholic. Rome is the friend of education and religion when
that education is priestly and that religion Romish; otherwise she is
the enemy of both. Hence those who support Catholic schools foster the
deadliest foe of our religious liberties. There will ever be,
therefore, an irrepressible conflict between Roman Catholicism and
Christian culture. Let him who doubts this study impartially the
history of Catholic countries. We ask no more.

The idea is fast passing away, and it can not pass too rapidly, that
the mass of the people need no other culture than that which fits them
for their various vocations. The world is beginning to learn that
culture is due to our _nature_, not to our _calling_. It is not the
calling nor the place of residence that makes the man. It is what a man
_is_, not what he does, that makes him great. True greatness is in the
man, not in circumstances. True greatness and worldly fame are two
widely different things. The greatest men of earth may be but little
known. As force of thought measures intellectual, so force of principle
measures moral, greatness. There is more true greatness in the huts of
poverty than in the palaces of kings, only it is undeveloped. Here,
therefore, is where we need true Christian culture. I can not better
express my appreciation of obscure greatness, which culture should
develop, than by repeating the words of Dr. Channing: "The greatest
man," says he, "is he who chooses the right with invincible resolution,
who resists the sorest temptation from within and without, who bears
the heaviest burdens cheerfully, who is calmest in storms and most
fearless under menace and frowns, whose reliance on truth, on virtue,
on God, is most unfaltering; and is this a greatness which is apt to
make a show, or which is most likely to abound in conspicuous stations?
The solemn conflicts of reason with passion; the victories of moral and
religious principles over urgent and almost irresistible solicitations
to self-indulgence; the hardest sacrifices of duty, those of
deep-seated affection and of the heart's fondest hopes; the
consolations, hopes, joys, and peace, of disappointed, persecuted,
scorned, deserted virtue; these are of course unseen, so that the true
greatness of human life is almost wholly out of sight. Perhaps in our
presence the most heroic deed on earth is done in some silent spirit,
the loftiest purpose cherished, the most generous sacrifices made, and
we do not suspect it. I believe this greatness to be most common among
the multitude, whose names are never heard." Most beautifully has the
poet expressed the same fine thought:

    "Full many a gem of purest ray serene,
      The dark, unfathomed caves of ocean bear;
    Full many a flower is born to blush unseen,
      And waste its sweetness on the desert air."

These pure gems need to be discovered and polished, and these sweet
flowers cultivated and utilized by Christian culture. It is idle to
talk of developing these hidden resources of intellectual and moral
wealth but by true culture, and this can never exist apart from
Christianity. Christianity is the spiritual power that vitalizes the
culture of our age. So evident is this that even a Fichte was compelled
to confess that, "We and our whole age are rooted in the soil of
Christianity, and have sprung from it; it has exercised its influence
in the most manifold ways on the whole of our culture, and we should be
absolutely nothing of all that we are, if this mighty principle had not
preceded us." Culture and Christianity can not now be divorced. Those
who would array culture against Christianity are themselves under the
influence of that which they oppose. The very imagined imperfections of
Christianity must be discovered by the light of Christianity, "just as
he who seeks to discover spots in the sun, must for this purpose borrow
the light of the sun itself." Culture and Christianity are so
interwoven that we may never expect either, separate from the other, as
a blessing to the world. The very fact that the Protestant nations of
the earth, where God is honored by a free Bible, are the chief
exponents of true culture, attests this connection. So vital is this
relation that, "United they stand; divided they fall."

Another important end to be attained in the culture of the masses is
independence of thought. We need to cast off the yoke of human opinion
and cultivate the individual judgment. We are too much the slaves of
fashion. We are disposed to dress our minds as well as our bodies,
after the fashion of the times. This destroys originality and
independence of thought, and renders our lives tame and insipid. We
need connection with other minds to excite our own, not to enslave
them. We want the thoughts of others that we may think; and without
correct modes of thinking, all efforts at education and culture are
failures.

But it may be argued, the masses are denied the privilege of
association with the cultivated. This is not true. They may deprive
themselves, but they are not denied. This is peculiarly an age of
printing. The best of literature may now find its way into the most
humble homes. There is not a roof in the land under which the prophets
and apostles of God will not enter with the glad message containing the
promise of the life that is and that which is to come; not one under
which the poets will not come to sing to us of that far-off land; not
one too holy for the habitation of the great minds of earth which
inspire us

    "With thoughts that breathe,
    And words that burn."

With these for our companions, we may have the best society that this
world affords, and, by such association, fit ourselves for the
companionship of the cultivated.

Is it argued that the poor have not time for self-culture? This is one
of the greatest mistakes of life. It is not _time_ that we want; it is
_inclination_. Generally, those who have most time profit by it least.
An earnest purpose will either find time or make time. Nor is it
necessary that much time should be taken. The spare moments, the mere
fragments of time, often worse than wasted, will, if carefully
improved, make both mind and heart a store-house of the most precious
treasure. It is said that Spurgeon read the whole of Macaulay's History
of England between the courses at dinner. I would not advise that these
golden opportunities for social culture be devoted to reading; but the
circumstance shows how much may be accomplished by gathering up the
crumbs which fall from the table of time. When Martin Luther was asked
how, amid all his other labors, he found time to translate the Holy
Scriptures, he replied, "One verse a day." A small amount of daily
reading, of the right kind, will furnish food for thought; and it is
thought, after all, that enriches the soul.

A proper improvement of the most slender opportunities for self-culture
creates new capacities for enjoyment, and saves the leisure moments
from being dull and wearisome. More than this; it saves them from being
devoted to ruinous indulgence. The soul-culture for which these
fragments of time provide, lifts humanity above mere brutal enjoyments,
and implants pleasures worthy of their race. Christian culture is
essential to the subduing of sensuality, and the subduing of sensuality
is essential to the permanent prosperity of both individuals and
nations.

But, it may be said, any considerable degree of culture will lift the
masses above their vocations, and cause them to become dissatisfied
with their lot; that the cultured mind despises drudgery. The very
reverse of this is true. Culture dignifies labor and destroys drudgery.
The man determines the dignity of the calling; not the calling the
dignity of the man. Let men of culture carry their culture into their
vocations, and their vocations will become honorable. Let cultured men
plow and reap, and plowing and reaping will become as dignified as the
"learned professions." Because a man can not wear as fine a garb at the
forge as he can at the desk, it does not follow that his thoughts may
not be as fine. A man may wear a polished intellect and a cultivated
soul under a coarse garb as well as under a fine one; and he should be
respected the more, if circumstances have compelled him to develop his
intellectual and moral forces; if at all, under a rough exterior.

While in these thoughts I have spoken of men, I have used the term
generically. The principles apply with equal force to the women of this
country. One of the great evils of our land is, that among the ladies,
domestic labor is not sufficiently dignified. The number of mothers in
the ordinary walks of life, silly enough to think that ignorance of
domestic duties is an accomplishment for their daughters, is by no
means small. This results from a want of true culture and common sense.
There is no just reason why a young lady should not knead her dough and
conjugate a Greek verb at the same time with equal skill. True culture
will dignify domestic labor among women of all classes, and this will
result in more domestic prosperity, and more domestic happiness. The
rich and the poor will be brought into closer sympathy, unnecessary
distinctions will be broken down, and the people will become one in the
essential elements of good government and pure religion.

Young ladies, you above all others should appreciate the blending of
culture and Christianity. One glance at the history of the world must
convince you that the highest culture, unsanctified by Christianity,
has never elevated your sex above disgraceful servitude. Certainly you
can not entertain the thought, that the culture which does not elevate
woman can ever bless the world. Only Christianity has exalted the
gentler sex to that position in the esteem and affections of men that
God designed she should occupy. Hence, of all the friends of ancient
Christianity, woman should be the truest and most lasting; and of all
the enemies of modern Rationalism, she should be the most bitter and
unrelenting.

In conclusion, allow me to repeat the thought of the beginning, that it
is the nature of man to _look upward_, and he who does not look upward
is untrue to his nature. But in the flesh, we can only begin to ascend
the heights of God. Here we are weighed down with infirmity, with our
frail, decaying bodies; but our souls long for the power of incessant,
never-wearying, glorious activity, awaiting us in the upper world. One
of my highest conceptions of Heaven; one that thrills me to
contemplate, is a life of no more prostration from labor; no more
weariness of over-wrought brain; no aching head nor pain-racked body;
but incessant labor, unincumbered by frail mortality; growth,
development, expanding visions of God, among pure intelligences, and
amid the celestial splendor of eternal worlds. But in the flesh, I can
not bathe in those fountains of celestial light. Then let me leave this
frail tenement of clay, as one steps out of the vehicle that can take
him no farther, and leaving it behind, ascends the lofty mountain to
gaze upon the unfolding wonders of God. Let my liberated spirit not
only look upward, but mount upward, as on eagles' wings, till rising
above the Pleiades, and leaving the Milky-way to fade out in the
receding distance, it walks with God on the ever-ascending plain,
reached only by culture and Christianity.



II.--SELF CULTURE.

[An Address Delivered Before Columbia Christian College, June 7, 1878.]


_Ladies and Gentlemen:_--I am happy in the privilege of again
addressing you in the interests of the great work in which you are so
nobly engaged. To-day many of you go out from under the fostering care
of this institution, to engage in the ceaseless battle of life. That
you have been well panoplied for the conflict is not questioned. And,
if I can second, in some degree, the efforts of your faithful and
worthy Faculty in directing and encouraging you to that success that
should crown their efforts and yours, I shall feel that I have labored
to no trifling purpose. The theme selected for your consideration is

    "_Self-Culture_."

Man, though fallen, is in his ruins grand. His powers of development
are little less than infinite. They begin with the cradle, but do not
end with the grave. No other being begins so low and ascends so high.
In his beginning, he is "crushed before the moth;" in the fullness of
his power he shall "judge angels." In this world he scarcely begins to
live. This life is too short and this world too small for the
development of his God-given faculties. Here he scarcely learns the
alphabet preparatory to God's grand university from which he is never
to graduate. He simply begins the study of an unending book. He but
gathers a few pebbles on the shores of the river of time, then sinks
beneath its wave.

But while in this world we scarcely make a beginning, yet everything
depends on the character of that beginning. As is the beginning, so
will be the conclusion. In the direction taken in time will we progress
in eternity. We may repent of our mistakes here and correct them, but
there is no repentance beyond the grave. There are no mistakes
corrected in eternity. Hence the necessity of a proper use of time.

I have selected the word culture to express the idea which I wish to
convey, and yet I must confess that it does not express it as happily
as I should desire. Where the Greeks had their _paideia_, the Romans
their _humanitas_, we have the more elastic and accommodating word
culture. I use it in this address in the sense of drawing out and
developing the nobler powers that are potentially in fallen humanity.
It is not so much the development of all the faculties in man to their
highest extent, as the directing and training of the better ones to
their true end. We are dealing here with beginnings, not endings. The
perfection of man in all his capacities is not a thing of time. In
time, the character must receive its mold; in eternity, its highest
polish.

By self-culture I mean, of course, the power that one has, and ought to
use, of cultivating himself. "To cultivate anything," says Dr.
Channing, "be it a plant, an animal, a mind, is to make grow. Growth,
expansion is the end. Nothing admits culture but that which has a
principle of life, capable of being expanded. He, therefore, who does
what he can to unfold all his powers and capacities, especially his
nobler ones, so as to become a well proportioned, vigorous, happy
being, practices self-culture." This may apply to those who have not
the advantages of schools and colleges, and to the after education of
those who have.

We hear much in this age about a "finished education at college." There
is, alas! too much truth in the expression. Generally, the more
superficial our collegiate education, the more completely is it
"finished" on the day of graduation. How few young ladies and gentlemen
meet the expectations raised by their educational advantages! How few
years sadden loving hearts with disappointed hopes! How many stars
shine brilliantly within college walls, then go out to be seen no more!
And all this the result of a "finished education!"

Most of these failures are the result of wrong views of education. Our
school days are but a beginning of our earthly education, as this is
but the beginning of that which is to come. It is not what we learn in
school, but what we learn after leaving it, that determines our success
or failure. These advantages are but for the purpose of laying the
foundation; the building is the work of after years. And he who does
not build, does not even preserve the foundation. Alas! how many
well-laid foundations have moldered into ruin! No sooner does the plant
cease to grow than it begins to decay. Therefore, he who would live
must grow, and he who would grow must be active. There is no success to
him who stands with his hands in his pockets. This is an age of intense
activity. Competition in every calling is sharp; the professions are
crowded, and there is room only at the top. Therefore, the path to
success is not strewed with flowers and tinted with the rainbow's hue.
As Carlyle truly says: "The race of life has become intense; the
runners are treading upon each other's heels, woe be to him who stops
to tie his shoestrings."

Many a young man fails because he thinks himself a genius, and
therefore does not need to study. The sooner you get rid of the idea
that you are a genius the better. The old idea of a genius that never
has to study is the pet of laziness and the ruin of manliness. Sidney
Smith truly says: "There is but one method of attaining to excellence,
and that is hard labor; and a man who will not pay that price for
distinction had better at once dedicate himself to the pursuit of the
fox, or sport with the tangles of Neæra's hair, or talk of bullocks and
glory in the goad! There are many modes of being frivolous, and not a
few of being useful; there is but one mode of being intellectually
great."

It is common for those who have not the wealth to afford them a
luxurious college course to bemoan their misfortune and content
themselves with being nothing. If culture were attained by complaining
of misfortune, many would soon reach perfection. To some, extreme
poverty is doubtless a misfortune, but to many others it is a blessing.
The world's grandest heroes and benefactors have struggled with
poverty; and, but for this, they would have died unwept and unhonored.
The great men and women of earth were not dandled in the lap of luxury.
Lord Thurlow, Chancellor of England, when asked by a wealthy friend
what course his son should pursue to secure success at the bar, is said
to have thus replied: "Let your son spend his fortune, marry and spend
his wife's, and then go to the bar; there will be little fear of his
failure." The Chancellor well knew that, with his wealth, the young man
would not do the work that success demanded. How many men, and women,
too, were never anything till they lost their fortune! Then the world
felt their power. What a fortune, then, to have no fortune to lose!
True, poverty brings difficulties, but difficulties develop men. They
show the material out of which one is composed. While they dishearten
the irresolute, they stimulate the brave. The wind that extinguishes
the taper only intensifies the heat of the stronger flame. Gnats are
blown with the wind, but kites rise only against it.

All culture is, in a large degree, self-culture. Our teachers are only
helps. They can teach us, but they can not learn us. We must do our own
learning. Wealth can not buy it, nor luxurious surroundings impart it;
it must be made ours by personal application.

I am not contending that all may or should be scholars in the proper
sense of that word. There is a difference between culture and
scholarship. A man of culture may or may not be a scholar. I plead more
especially for the training of the mind, for the development of the
nobler faculties of our nature, that we may fulfill the true end of our
being.

I do not mean that all should be great, in the popular acceptation of
that term. This is neither desirable nor possible. If all were great,
then none were great. But God has designed us all for positions of
usefulness and happiness; some in one direction, some in another. These
positions we should seek and fill to the full extent of our ability.
And it is with reference to this ability that I am making the plea for
self-culture. It is not simply preparation for a position, but
development in it, for which I plead. There is much said in this age
about education for a position, and this education is all right; the
more thorough the better. But the trouble is, too many seem to think
that this is all. Here is the ruinous mistake. There is a world of
difference between being educated _for_ a calling, and being educated
_in_ it. That may be obtained in schools and colleges; this is a
work of subsequent life. That is important; this is indispensable.
Without that, this may be a grand success; without this, that is next
to worthless. Many men are highly educated in their calling who were
never educated for it. This is self-culture in its true sense.

Nor is the culture for which I plead derived simply from books. These
we need, but we need them simply as helps. We should make them our
servants, not our masters. A "bookworm" is sometimes a very inferior
kind of a worm. Some men that the schools call highly educated rely so
much on books that they are nothing in themselves. They have no mind of
their own. They deal altogether in second-hand goods. We need to lay
aside our books, and study men and things--commence with God and
nature. We must learn to _think_. To think much. To think accurately.
To do our own thinking, not have it done for us. Without this, we shall
make but little of our advantages; with it, we rise superior to
advantages.

Neither am I contending that we should all strive for the "learned
professions." It is just the reverse. We want to elevate and ennoble
the _un_learned professions. The American people, at least, should
learn that the calling does not make the man. We need to dignify all
the honest and legitimate vocations by intellectual and moral culture.
We not only need to dignify labor by culture, but, by so doing, we need
to dignify the mass of our common humanity. Personal worth consists not
in what one does, but in what one is. Better be a good barber than a
poor doctor, a good shoemaker than a poor lawyer.

I would not be understood as claiming that men and women in all the
vocations in life should be cultured in all directions. In this age of
short and intense life this is not practicable. It might have done
before the flood, when men lived a thousand years, but it is not
adapted to the nineteenth century. Remember I am speaking with
reference to the masses. Men can not know everything, neither can they
do everything, and do it well. All knowledge may be made useful, and I
would urge the obtaining of all possible; but it is a mistake to try to
do too much, and do nothing. A few things well understood are of more
value than a smattering of much. By all means avoid being
"Jack-of-all-trades." Decide what you want to do and do it. I would
urge the training of mind and heart and hand as a specialty in that
which you select as a life work, embellished and perfected by all the
general knowledge that a life of intense application will enable you to
possess. Difference in occupation demands a difference in special
culture, but not in general. This is culture, not of the schools,
simply, but of life.

But the difficulties and the means of self-culture need now to be
considered. In doing this, the first essential element to success to
which your attention is called, is

    SELF-RELIANCE.

No man ever amounted to much who did not rely on God and himself. The
young man who whines around, waiting for some one to help him, instead
of helping himself, ought to be sent back to the nursery, clothed in
enlarged baby-gowns, and fed with a spoon. Men of independence are the
men that move the world. The living rarely walk well in the shoes of
the dead, and he who waits for them ought to go barefooted all his
life. God helps those who help themselves. Self-reliance toughens our
sinews and develops our manhood. "It is not in the sheltered garden or
the hothouse, but on the rugged Alpine cliffs where the storm bursts
most violently, that the toughest plants are reared." The man who does
not rely on self, soon ceases to have any self. He becomes a zoological
parasite, instead of a man. He is a lobster that waits for the sea to
come to him, instead of going to it, though its waves may be dashing at
his feet. Should the sea accommodate him in time, well enough;
otherwise he dies. These men make the subjunctive heroes of the world.
They always "might," "could," "would" or "should" do some great thing;
but they never get into the imperative mood to do it. They have never
learned self-reliance; and, the result is, they never learned anything
worth knowing. They can never appreciate this saying of the immortal
Burke: "I was not rocked and swaddled and dandled into a legislator.
_Nitor in adversum_ is the motto for a man like me."

Those who are afraid to move without the arms of a rich ancestry around
them, will never learn to walk erect. They will never have a firm,
elastic step, nor make the world feel the weight of their tread. The
man who thus shrinks from difficulties and responsibilities, refuses to
be a pupil of the best teacher the world affords. They should learn
that repeated failure, if wisely used, is but a means to grand success.
As Dr. Mathews truly says: "Great statesmen in all countries have owed
their sagacity, tact and foresight more to their failures than to their
successes. The diplomatist becomes master of his art by being baffled,
thwarted, defeated, quite as much as by winning his points. Every time
he is checkmated he acquires a profounder knowledge of the political
game, and makes his next combination with increased skill and increased
chances of success." Ease and luxury may make the butterflies of
society, but difficulties make men and women. That was a wise saying of
Pythagoras, that, "ability and necessity dwell near each other." It is
astonishing how difficulties will yield to one who will not yield to
them. They tip their plumed caps to his dominant will, and politely bow
themselves out of sight. They not only clear the way for self-reliance,
but give him the encouragement of their parting salute.

"Every person," says Gibbon, "has two educations--one which he receives
from others, and one, more important, which he gives himself."
Archimedes said, "Give me a standing-place and I will move the world."
But Goethe more happily says, "Make good thy standing-place and move
the world." Circumstances may afford a standing-place, but
self-reliance alone can give the leverage power. We must learn that
character and worth consists in doing, not in possessing. Not resting,
not having, not being simply, but growing and becoming, is the true
character of self-culture. This thought is most beautifully expressed
by Rogers--

                            "Our reward
    Is in the race we run, not in the prize,
    Those few, to whom is given what they ne'er earned,
    Having by favor or inheritance
    The dangerous gifts placed in their hands,
    Know not, nor ever can, the generous pride
    That glows in him who on himself relies,
    Entering the lists of life. He speeds beyond
    Them all, and foremost in the race succeeds.
    His joy is not that he has got his crown,
    But that the power to win the crown is his."

Another important item in the attainment of self-culture is the

    ECONOMY OF TIME.

Time is a divine inheritance that no man has a right to squander. The
antediluvians might have afforded to be a little profligate in this
direction, but the man who would fulfill his high destiny in this age
has no time to lose. Lost time is forever lost. There is much useless
complaint in the world of a want of time. It is not more time we need,
so much as a better use of that we have. I do not mean that we should
deprive ourselves of requisite sleep and rest. On the contrary, the
regulation of these constitutes a part of the economy of which I speak.
Rest is necessary; but all rest is not idleness. We should learn to
rest by changing our employment, not by its abandonment. The man whose
mind becomes weary in his study, finds the most invigorating rest in
manual labor. The physical and intellectual have a happy reflective
influence on each other. The moments wisely taken for intellectual and
moral culture by the laboring man are fountains whose refreshing
stream, like that from Horeb, follows him through his daily toil. They
are a ceaseless pleasure, both in remembrance and anticipation. Those,
also whose lives are disconnected with manual labor should have such a
variety of work that one kind prepares the way for the enjoyment of
another. There are both pleasure and health in a change of diet. To
happily manage this variety requires a training of the mind essential
to self-culture. We must learn to do the right thing at the right time.
The happy influence of one thing upon another depends on their
arrangement and the manner of their execution. It may not be well to
have too many irons in the fire, but it is certainly best to have
enough for some to be heating while others are cooling.

In order to do the right thing at the right time, and do it well, we
must learn to think about the right thing at the right time. This is
one of the most important features in mental training. We can think
well on but one thing at a time. Therefore, the mind that is filled
with various kinds of thoughts can prosecute none of them successfully.
We must learn to select the guests that we would have sit at our
intellectual banquets, summon or exclude them at will, and never permit
the intrusion of a promiscuous crowd. When our work is arranged for the
day, the week, the month, the year, we should set apart the time to be
devoted to each item, both in work and in thought; and then never allow
the thoughts of one to encroach upon the time allotted to another. We
should so train the mind that we can think about the thing only of
which we wish to think, concentrate our whole mind upon it till the
time comes to put it away; then dismiss it in a moment, turn to
something else, and think no more about it, till its proper time. The
mind is soon trained to pass from one subject to another in a moment,
with all its powers of concentration. This mastery of the mind, once
attained, will enable us to study at all times and places regardless of
circumstances. The man who can not study amid the wild shouts of the
excited multitude is not his own master. He who can command his time
and his talents only when no surging billows beat against his quiet
retreat, has necessarily to spend much of life in which he has neither
time nor talents which he can call his own. A very important item,
then, in the economy of time, is to learn to labor under difficulties,
till we rise superior to external surroundings. To keep the reins of
the mind well in hand when there is a stampede all around us, is
absolutely essential in the great crises of life. This is attained only
by training the mind to instantaneous concentration under all
circumstances. This, then, I would urge you to persist in until it is
accomplished. Without this you will lose much time in acquiring
information, and, what is of vastly more importance, you will be
unprepared to use what you have at the very time, it may be, when it is
most needed.

Another important element in the economy of time we learn from the
great Teacher who said, "Gather up the fragments, that nothing be
lost." If He who had the power to create as well as to preserve, was
such an economist of the remnants of loaves and fishes, how much more
should we save the fragments of time, which we can not lengthen out a
span?

Many people seem to think they can make garments only out of whole
cloth. If they have not an abundance of uninterrupted time in which to
accomplish a thing, they think they can not accomplish it at all. Such
men accomplish but little, not for want of time, but for want of its
economy. To avoid this waste, we must learn to weave whole garments out
of the mere ravelings of the fabric of time. But some complain that
they can not "get up steam" for intellectual labor in these fractions
of time. We don't need to "get up steam." The "steam" should be already
up. We only need to change the gearing. "There is a momentum in the
active man," says Mathews, "which of itself almost carries him to the
mark, just as a very light stroke will keep a hoop going, when a smart
one was required to set it in motion. While others are yawning and
stretching themselves to overcome the _vis inertiae_, he has his eyes
wide open, his faculties keyed up for action, and is thoroughly alive
in every fiber. He walks through the world with his hands unmuffled and
ready by his side, and so can sometimes do more by a single touch in
passing than a vacant man is likely to do by strenuous effort."

Let no one conclude that nothing important can be accomplished by these
scattered fragments. It is said that "Hugh Miller found time while
pursuing his trade as a stone-mason, not only to read but to write,
cultivating his style till he became one of the most facile and
brilliant authors of the day." Also, that Elihu Burritt "acquired a
mastery of eighteen languages and twenty-two dialects, not by rare
genius, which he disclaimed, but by improving the bits and fragments of
time which he could steal from his occupation as a blacksmith."

With these examples before us, then, let no one conclude that he can
not get time from his daily vocation, whatever it may be, to cultivate
his mind, and develop his moral and intellectual faculties. Another
essential element in self-culture is

    SINGLENESS OF PURPOSE.

"A man," says Emerson, "is like a bit of Labrador spar, which has no
lustre as you turn it in your hand until you come to a particular
angle; then it shows deep and beautiful colors." There is no adaptation
or universal applicability in man; but each has his special talent; and
the mastery of successful men consists in adroitly keeping themselves
where and when that turn shall need oftenest to be practiced. The
successful man in every calling, whether literary, scientific or
business, is he who is _totus in illo_--who can say with Paul, this one
thing I do! With the exception of a few great creative minds, the men
whose names are historic are identified with some one achievement, upon
which all their life force is spent. "Whatever I have tried to do in my
life," says Dickens, "I have tried with all my heart to do well. What I
have devoted myself to, I have devoted myself to completely. Never to
put one hand to a thing on which I would not throw my whole self, and
never to affect depreciation of my work, whatever it was, I find now to
have been golden rules." The fact is, the range of human knowledge has
become so extensive that the man who would know some things well must
have the courage to be ignorant of many others. There are many things
for which one is wholly incapacitated; for which he has no talent, and,
as a rule, time spent in this direction is time lost. Goethe justly
says: "We should guard against a talent which we can not hope to
practice in perfection. Improve it as we may, we shall always, in the
end, when the merit of the master has become apparent to us, painfully
lament the loss of time and strength devoted to such botching." Sidney
Smith condemns what he calls the "foppery of _universality_--of knowing
all sciences and excelling in all arts." "Now _my_ advice," he says,
"on the contrary, is to have the courage to be ignorant of a great
number of things, in order to avoid the calamity of being ignorant of
everything."

I do not mean that you should try to learn but one thing, or be a man
or woman of one idea; far from it. I simply mean that you must be
select. Select your calling, and then bend all your energies in that
direction. Let those branches of knowledge that bear most directly on
your vocation be mastered first, then widen the circle as opportunity
affords. Do not scatter your powers over so much territory that they
are felt nowhere. It is only when the sun's rays are brought to a focus
that they burn. The man who is one thing this year, another next;
studies medicine a while, then law, is next a school-teacher, and then
an insurance agent, will, in the end, be nothing. Men who are always
changing, never learn enough about anything to make it of any value.
Men who are eminent in their professions have stuck to them with a
singleness of purpose. Men talk much about genius, when, generally, the
genius of which they speak is but the result of unremitting
application. The genius that blesses this world is simply a talent for
hard work. They are men who have the resolution to try, and the courage
to persevere. Idle men of the most eminent natural ability are soon
distanced in the race by the mediocre who sticks to his purpose and
plods. Then, I repeat, if you would succeed in life, in whatever
calling you may select, divest yourself of the idea that you are a
genius and do not need the application demanded by common mortality;
rely not on the caprices of fickle fortune; but rely on God and
yourself, economize your time, apply yourself with diligence and with
singleness of purpose. With these you will be a blessing to the world,
and fulfill the high and holy purposes of God in giving you being.

Self-culture looks not simply to time, but to eternity. No man is truly
cultured who is not cultured for eternity. His culture is but
one-sided, and that the most inferior side. The well-rounded and
perfected culture, though it may be only partial so far as the culture
of this world is concerned, is the culture that prepares one to
matriculate in the great university over which God presides, and sit
forever in delightful appreciation at the feet of the great Teacher.
Let this, then, be the ultimatum of all your efforts.

It is for this reason that you should so highly appreciate this
institution from which you go out to-day as honored students. While the
various branches of the arts and sciences that pertain to this life,
have been carefully and accurately taught you, the great Science of
eternal life, if I may so term it, has been, I trust, indelibly
engraved on your every heart. A college whose faculty is composed
exclusively of Christian men and women, and in which the systematic
study of the Bible by both ladies and gentlemen is made one of its most
prominent features, will ever be most highly appreciated by those who
appreciate true culture, and know in what it consists. I think I
appreciate a high standard of education, and I want, if possible, to
give my children its advantages; but I should infinitely prefer their
never going beyond the common school than to be graduated with the
first honors from the most renowned colleges or universities of Europe
or America, in which the authority of Jesus is not held as supreme, and
the Bible honored as our only divine guide. Other things being equal,
we should always honor those institutions most that honor God's word
most. For this reason, then, as well as for many others, we delight to
honor this institution from whose fostering care you this day go forth.

In conclusion, let me entreat you to be what this world now most
needs--MEN and WOMEN. The world is now burdened with "gentlemen and
ladies;" but it is perishing for the want of MEN and WOMEN. The world
needs men and women that are true to themselves, true to each other,
and true to God--men and women who know what manliness is, and what
womanly virtues are; who delight in the real, and scorn the
counterfeit; who have the courage to do right because it is right; who
would rather stand alone on the side of truth, than with the world on
the side of error; who are governed by high and holy principle, not by
selfish policy. We need men and women that will create a healthier
public sentiment, rather than to float on that which exists; who will
frown out of countenance the fraud, dishonesty and meanness that now
lifts high its head in society; who will not live in fine palaces,
drive fast horses, and occupy the first pews in the sanctuary, at ten
cents on the dollar. The world needs men and women who have hearts and
consciences, as well as brains; who realize that they have a soul as
well as a body; who live for eternity rather than for time.

God grant that you may all make such men and women. That you may not
only be a blessing to the age and generation in which you live; but
that your influence for the "true, the beautiful and the good," may be
felt like the gentle dews of heaven upon the earth, generations after
you are gathered to your fathers! May you be diligent and faithful in
the cultivation of your nobler powers of mind and heart till the world
shall bless God that you have lived in it; then laying aside the body,
in which you have fought the grand fight for righteousness and truth--a
fight on which God and angels have looked with interest and delight--as
you would lay aside a worn-out garment, and passing through "the gates
ajar," enter on a higher plane of culture, where you will not have to
rely upon self, and struggle against adversity as here; but where you
will have all the facilities of Heaven, and be forever pupils of the
great Teacher!



III.--PLUS ULTRA VS. NE PLUS ULTRA.

[An Address Delivered Before Eminence College, June 10, 1881.]


LADIES AND GENTLEMEN OF EMINENCE COLLEGE:--It has ever been a delight
to me to meet with the faculty and students of Eminence College on
these festive occasions. It is but natural that the hearts of those who
have gone out from these classic halls should turn on these gala days,
and in feeling if not in fact, renew the fond associations of the past.
They are oases in the desert; well-springs to the thirsty soul in the
journey of life. I should, therefore, be untrue to myself, and unjust
to you, were I not to confess to a pardonable pride in the privilege of
addressing for the second time one of the graduating classes of this
renowned institution. The subject on which I shall to-day address you
is

    "_Plus Ultra vs. Ne Plus Ultra._"

Spain is the great southwestern peninsula of Europe. It juts out
between two seas as does no other country of that continent. Before the
discovery of America by Columbus, the Spaniards prided themselves on
the supposed fact that their country was the last point of solid land
on the earth westward. Beyond them, they thought, there was nothing but
a vast expanse of water--a shoreless ocean--a mystery never to be
solved. Consequently the early coins of that country, in order to give
prominence to this idea, were indented with a picture of the pillars of
Hercules, the two great sentries on each side of the straits of
Gibraltar. Encircling these pillars on their coins was the inscription,
_ne plus ultra_--nothing beyond. They imagined, therefore, that they
constituted the limits of creation; that beyond them there was nothing.
Consequently, as in creation the last is the best, they gave to
themselves the preëminence. In this proud idea they rested and praised
the Lord. In their own estimation, therefore, they constituted the _ne
plus ultra_ of God's favored people. Thus they constituted another
proud monument of man's folly and ignorance, from which it is well to
take warning. In course of time, however, Columbus conceived the idea
of another world west of Spain. After long years of discouragement,
sufficient to crush the spirit of all but those of noble impulses and
high resolves, he was permitted, with a small fleet, utterly
insignificant in this age, to sail westward. He thus discovered the
_new world_ whose existence, if ever known before, had faded from the
memory of man. On his return, when the Spaniards became convinced that
a great continent lay to the west of them, they were compelled,
humiliating as it was, to change the inscription on their coins,
encircling the pillars of Hercules, to _plus ultra_--more beyond. This
the demonstrated truth demanded. Thus the discovery of America took the
_ne_ off of their proud motto, thus teaching them a lesson which should
be a lesson to the world. Their negation was changed to an affirmation.
Their boasted limit of creation was changed to an acknowledgment of the
unknown beyond. Thus it has ever been in man's proud history. Thus it
will doubtless continue to be till we know as we are known. "Whether
there be knowledge, it shall vanish away; for now we know only in part,
but then shall we know even also as we are known."

The first thought with which I would impress your minds to-day,
especially the minds of those who go out from this institution with the
honors of graduation, is that there is something beyond--the _plus
ultra_ of a collegiate education. One of the most fatal mistakes in
securing a collegiate education is, that this is all. If one of you
entertains the idea to-day that your education is "finished," you will
be a failure. We hear much in this age about a "finished education" in
college. Alas! there is too much truth in it. The education of many is
thus "finished," and their progress in life is also _finished_. A
college course is not the end, but simply the means, of an education.
This is simply the foundation, not the structure. On this you are to
hereafter build; otherwise the foundation will be worthless. Without
the after building the foundation itself will decay. This is alike the
teaching of the history of man and the Son of God. On this foundation,
therefore, I would urge you to build, not for time only, but for
eternity. On it you should erect a noble structure, at once an ornament
and a blessing to your race. This can not be done in a day. Patience
and perseverance are the price of success. You must learn to "labor and
to wait."

How often do we see the scintillations of genius within college walls,
of which we see or hear nothing after the day of graduation? On that
day the sun of their brilliancy seems to set forever. Why is this?
Simply because they think their graduation is the _ne plus ultra_ of
their literary life.

It is not what we learn in college, but what we learn after leaving it,
that makes us what we are in after life. The value of a collegiate
education consists not in the amount of information it imparts, but in
a preparation for the accumulation and use of information. Not simply
the best minds, but the best students are those who win the prize in
the end. Not the best students in college, but the best students after
leaving it, are those who make the world feel their power. Many study
hard for the honors of graduation, and beyond this seem to have no
aspirations. If this is their _ne plus ultra_, then it is worthless.
This institution does not educate you for graduation; it graduates you
for education. Without this end in view, its labors would better cease.
An institution is honored not by what its students know on the day of
commencement, but by what they know and do ere they matriculate in the
great university of worlds. It is, therefore, young ladies and
gentlemen, to this end and not to this hour, that your teachers have
faithfully labored to bring you. Without this in view, you will miss
the grand purpose of your education thus far.

Doubtless many of us know men and women who have not grown an inch
since the day that they went out from these or other halls of learning.
They may have promised much at the beginning. On their success high
hopes were built. Loving hands were impatient to wreathe their brows
with the garlands of victory. But, alas! those hopes have been blighted
and those garlands have withered. We see them in the pulpit, at the
bar, and in all the other vocations of life. They are failures, not for
want of mind, but for want of application. They have not followed up
their victories, and their victories have turned to defeat. They have
been resting on the honor of faded laurels, that in their freshness so
become you to-day. To gather these was the _ne plus ultra_ of their
efforts, and hence the end of their success. Therefore, if any of you
to-day look upon your graduation as the consummation of your literary
struggles, let me exhort you to change your motto, and, like the
Spaniards, on the birth of the new world, discard the idea of a
possessed _ultimatum_, and imprint upon your banner _plus ultra_--more
beyond.

As most of the graduating class are ladies, I feel the necessity of
speaking especially of their hopes and prospects. Till recently, the
hindrances of woman's education and literary position have been great
and discouraging. But, thanks to the religion of Jesus, her
disabilities have in Christian lands been removed. Woman was the
crowning workmanship of God, and she has received the crowning
blessings of Christianity. By the blessing of Christianity, the
intellectual and spiritual powers of woman are encouraged. The world is
often dazzled by her genius, astonished at her resources, and subdued
by her spirit. She has stood in the halls of learning, walked in the
groves of science, and gathered laurels on the mountains of fame. She
has stimulated the world's genius, soothed its passion, and strewed her
pathway through it with the sweetest flowers. Women have ever been the
world's brightest angels of mercy--

    "Whose company has harmonized mankind,
    Soften'd the rude and calmed the boisterous mind."

There are positions in the world for which woman was not made. The
finishing touches of creation's wondrous works were too delicate to fit
her for the political arena, the command of armies, or the founding of
empires. She was made for higher and holier ends than these. She is
adapted to a work more noble and more enduring. Her empire is in the
heart, and her scepter one of spiritual dominion. Here she is a queen,
and reigns without a rival. While there is a limit to her appropriate
field of action, there is no limit to her power. Some one has said:
"The current of female existence runs more within the embankments of
home." This is true, but her influence overflows those banks and
inundates the world. Her influence may be compared to the sparkling
rivulet that bursts from the mountain peak, then winding its way to the
valley below, it flows gently onward for thousands of miles, through
rugged hills and fertile plains, bathing the feet of great cities and
slaking the thirst of great countries, augmented by its tributaries,
till, bearing upon its bosom the commerce of a nation, it pours its
flood of waters into the world's great ocean. As our grand Mississippi
will readily yield to an infant's touch, and yet bear upon its bosom
the proudest vessels of man's invention, so is the tenderness and the
power of woman's influence.

I have spoken of woman being the "last of creation." This expression is
generally used in a false sense. She was last because God created on an
ascending scale. She was, therefore, last in creation and first in
redemption. She gave to the world its Saviour, and first proclaimed His
birth from the dead. She was His best friend while He was here, and has
been most devoted to His cause during His absence. Hence where
Christianity goes woman's power is felt. The extent to which woman is
honored marks to-day with unerring certainty the extent of a nation's
civilization.

Young ladies, you have before you a field of golden opportunities. Only
thrust in your sickles and reap. In this age and country there are
great potentialities to every young lady of a good mind and a pure
heart. Let no one, therefore, be discouraged. Remember that there is
something beyond--the _plus ultra_ of a well-begun life.

Having urged the necessity of _plus ultra_ as your motto, as against
_ne plus ultra_, I may drop some profitable hints as to the
attainment of success. You know that one may give good advice, though
he may not have profited by it himself.

In the first place, everything depends on work. Intense application is
the price of success. The world's benefactors are the world's hard
workers. "Tickle the earth with a hoe, and it will laugh at you with a
harvest." But it closes its fists against those who extend to it an
idle hand. Many people contend that the world owes them a living, and
grumble that it does not pay the debt. What have they done for the
world to bring it into their debt? The world owes every man a living
when he earns it by honest toil, and not before. Those who sow with a
stingy hand may expect to reap a scanty harvest. You should, therefore,
in whatever vocation you may elect, strive to succeed on this
principle; otherwise you will not deserve success.

You should not be discouraged because surroundings are not favorable,
and hope seems long deferred. Be not impatient of results. Do your
whole duty, and leave the consequences with the Lord. Never strive to
be great. Few men become great this way, and they never deserve it.
True greatness comes as a result of devotion to principle and duty. The
highest and noblest success comes through a spirit of
self-forgetfulness.

Learn to be indifferent to surroundings. You need not catch the "spirit
of the age" unless the "spirit of the age" is worth catching. When you
contemplate Marquis de Condorcet, in the dark days of the French
Revolution, hiding in a lonely room in the city of Paris, while its
streets ran red with noble and innocent blood, quietly writing a book
whose subject was, "_Man's Certain Progress to Liberty, Virtue, and
Happiness_," you will understand what I mean.

You must learn to _think_; to think regardless of surroundings; to
think only of the thing of which you wish to think; and on this to
concentrate the whole power of your mind. This requires careful
training; but this only is _education_. With this you have full command
of all your resources; without this they avail but little. The great
motive power of the world is thought. Information without thought is
simply a peddler burdened with stale wares on a dead market. It is not
what one knows, but what he can produce, that makes the world feel his
power. Hence one must be a producer as well as a receiver. The world's
thought must be regenerated in his own mind. He should turn the world's
dead facts into living thoughts--"Thoughts that breathe, and words that
burn."

Avoid fickleness of purpose. Decide to do something in harmony with
your endowments and the will of God, _and do it_. Many people of fine
attainments and intellectual powers are spending their lives trying to
decide for what purpose the Lord made them. Before they determine what
they are good for, the world is certain to decide that they are good
for nothing. Life is too precious to be spent in hesitation. He who
vacillates will do nothing. Concentration is power. The rays of the sun
that would hardly warm an infant's hand will, when concentrated by a
lens, blister the palms of the hardiest sons of toil.

If we would make life a success, we must live for a purpose. He who
lives simply for the sake of living, has no just conception of life.
Those who live for the gratification of the flesh should remember that
the goat lives for the same purpose. How humiliating the thought, that
so many of the cultured, as well as the ignorant; the rich as well as
the poor; the "cream of society" as well as its dregs, are thus living
on the low plane of animal life! The grand distinction between man and
the brute creation is in his _spirit_ nature. Without spiritual
culture, every thought, every aspiration, every gratification, is of
the earth earthy. How sad, then, to see the gaudy "butterflies of
society" spending their lives without a thought above that which alone
can lift them forever above the plane of animal life! It is sad thus to
think, but sadder still 'tis true. The enjoyment of "society,"
therefore, must not be your _ne plus ultra_, else life will be a
failure.

In order to the highest success, you should live fast, but not in the
world's bad sense of that word. I simply mean that your life should be
intense. Mere existence is not life. Life is action. Life is not
measured by time, but by experience. It is our duty, therefore, to live
all we can in the time allotted us. The patriarchs lived longer than
we, but we may live more than they. This is a grand age in which we
live. We may now live more in fifty years than Methuselah did before
the flood. The time is short. Hence if we would live much we must live
fast.

But here I anticipate an objection. You say, "We shall shorten our days
by fast living." Not by _this kind_ of fast living. The world will
never be troubled for burying ground for those who kill themselves
simply by hard work. It is not work, but worry, that wears men out. We
have too much friction in our lives. This must be stopped. An hour's
passion will tell more on the constitution than a week's work. The
largest amount of action, with the smallest amount of friction, is the
problem before you; and he is the wisest philosopher who gives to us
its best practical solution.

I wish now to invite your attention to mistakes that men have made in
supposing that their knowledge was the _ne plus ultra_ of human wisdom.
Time was when the alchemists thought they possessed the _ne plus ultra_
of human knowledge, and that wisdom would die with them; yet their
knowledge is now to chemistry what astrology is to astronomy. It is a
superstition on whose claims no scientist would dare to risk his
reputation. Now chemistry is the _ne plus ultra_ of human wisdom, and
every man is a fool who does not hold the key to the secret chambers of
its hidden treasures! But how long till we shall have a new chemistry
that will render the old a bundle of laughable folly? The fact is, by
the advancement of human knowledge we demonstrate that our ancestors
were a set of fools, and our posterity will doubtless pay us the same
compliment! The philosophy of history should teach us to be modest, and
to keep as our motto _plus ultra versus ne plus ultra_.

Modern science has demonstrated that of all unreliable things, ancient
science is the most unreliable. We should, therefore, expect to
eventually see modern science remanded to the same category. One of the
greatest inventors of the age, Mr. Edison, whose inventions have had to
do wholly with modern science, tells us that he has been constantly
thrown off the track and misled by the frauds of science. He thus
expresses his estimate of the authorities in modern science:

    "They [the text-books] are mostly misleading. I get mad with myself
    when I think I have believed what was so learnedly set out in them.
    _There are more frauds in science than anywhere else_.... Take a
    whole pile of them and you will find uncertainty, if _not
    imposition_, in half of what they state as scientific truth. They
    have time and again set down _experiments as done by them_,
    curious, out-of-the-way experiments, _that they never did_, and
    upon which they have founded so-called scientific truths. I have
    been thrown off my track often by them, and for months at a time.
    You see a great name, and you believe it. Try the experiment
    yourself, and you find the result altogether different.... I tell
    you I'd rather know nothing about a thing in science, nine times
    out of ten, than what the books would tell me--for practical
    purposes, for applied science, the best science, the only science,
    I'd rather take the thing up and go through with it myself. I'd
    find out more about it than any one could tell me, and I'd be sure
    of what I know. That's the thing. Professor this or that will
    controvert you out of the books, and prove out of the books it
    can't be so, though you have it right in the hollow of your hand
    all the time and could break his spectacles with it."

Thus it is that these authorities have been weighed in the balances and
found wanting. This is a marvelous age, an age of unsurpassed invention
and discovery of truth, but it is not the _ne plus ultra_ of human
wisdom--if we are to take any lessons from the past ages.

The wave theory of sound, which has been regarded as a settled
scientific fact since the days of Pythagorean, is now vigorously
attacked, and the adherents to the orthodox ground will have to rally
their forces and reconsider their proofs, if they save the theory from
slumbering among the follies of the past.

In the past few years the world has been startled by the bold theory of
evolution, as advocated by Darwin, Haeckel, Huxley and others. Many
have felt uneasy about the foundations of our faith. But such alarm is
all premature. The glaring contradictions of one another of these
modern apostles of a "gospel of dirt," and their self-stultification,
are enough to convince any thoughtful reader, that if the race has not
developed from apes, a few of them bear marks of descent from asses!
The credulity of this class of men is simply marvelous. They can
believe that a moneron can be developed into a man, but can not believe
in a miracle! Their wonderful development of a moneron into a man
terminates with the boundary line of time, and thus the _ne plus ultra_
is reached of their "infinite progression!"

In order to a proper appreciation of the present life, we must be
deeply impressed with the nature of that which lies beyond. No one can
well spend the present life who does not spend it in view of the life
to come. Man must properly appreciate himself before he can live in
harmonious relations with his being. No man can have that appreciation
of himself essential to a true life, who believes that his ancestors
were monerons and mud-turtles!

While there are many striking resemblances between animals and man,
just such as we should expect to find from the hand of the same
Creator, who began farthest from himself and worked to his own divine
model, yet there are striking differentiae which demand profound
consideration. Animals come into the world with the knowledge of their
ancestors. The beaver knows just what its ancestors knew before the
flood. It is born into the world with that transmitted knowledge. Its
posterity will know no more during the millennium. On the contrary, man
is born into the world an intellectual blank. However wise his parents,
he inherits not one idea. He knows absolutely nothing except what he
learns--learns from teachers and by experience. It would be
incomprehensibly strange if man in his development from a mollusk,
should accumulate inherited knowledge till he reaches the _ne plus
ultra_ of terrestrial life, and then by a sudden break in the chain of
nature lose it all, and come into the world a born fool!! This would be
"development," "natural selection," and the "survival of the fittest,"
with a vengeance! Here is a chasm between man and the lower animals,
made by the hand of God, that human wisdom can never bridge.

In his intellectual, moral and spiritual development, man starts from
zero. God has thus ordained it. He is dependent on progression for all
that he is and all that he is to be. God simply gives him a start in
this world, with the numberless ages of eternity before him for
infinite advancement. The idea, therefore, that "death ends all" nips
in the bud this grand conception of man's greatness, and blights
forever that which is noblest and truest in his nature. To regard this
life as the _ne plus ultra_ of man's development, is to charge nature
with a freak of folly, and an abortion in her best works. Men may laud
human virtue for human virtue's sake; but if man is but the moth of a
day, the fire-fly whose phosphorescent light flashes for a moment and
then goes out in eternal night, his virtues are but the tales of the
hour that have their value in the telling. If this life is all there is
of man, then he is the most unmeaning portion of the creation of God.
There is for him no perfection, no satisfying of his inherent wants,
and the whole of his existence is a sham and a fraud. As Young has
beautifully said:

    "How poor, how rich, how abject, how august,
    How complicate, how wonderful, is man!
    How passing wonder He who made him such!
    Who centered in our make such strange extremes,
    From different natures marvelously mixed,
    Connection exquisite of distant worlds!
    Distinguished link in being's endless chain!
    Midway from nothing to the Deity!
    A beam ethereal, sullied, and absorbed!
    Though sullied and dishonored, still divine!
    Dim miniature of greatness absolute!
    An heir of glory! a frail child of dust!
    Helpless immortal! insect infinite!
    A worm! a God!--I tremble at myself,
    And in myself am lost. At home, a stranger.
    Thought wanders up and down, surprised, aghast,
    And wondering at her own. How reason reels!
    O, what a miracle to man is man!
    Triumphantly distressed! What joy! what dread!
    Alternately transported and alarmed!
    What can preserve my life? or what destroy?
    An angel's arm can't snatch me from the grave;
    Legions of angels can't confine me there."

It is only when we thus look beyond this life, and contemplate his
relation to the Deity, that we realize the true dignity of man.

It is natural that you should desire power--power to bless the race and
bring it nearer to God. Do not be discouraged if you do not find this
power clothed in the world's pomp and parade. The most God-like power
comes not in this way. God works by quiet forces that man may scorn but
can not equal. Behold that mountain of ice in the polar sea held by the
relentless grip of a winter's frost. All the engineering power of man
could not shake it upon its throne. All the locomotives in the world
could not move it an inch. But nature unveils her smiling face when the
springtime comes, the sun sheds upon it his gentle rays, noiseless as
the grave, too mild to hurt an infant's flesh, and soon these mountains
of ice relax their grip and glide away into the great deep! This is
power. This power you may possess, and should strive to possess,
through the gentle forces of a regenerated nature, till the quiet
influences you exert for God will pass beyond the bounds of time and be
expended on a shoreless eternity.

In conclusion, then, let me urge you to live for eternity, and let the
life that now is be with reference to that which is to come. Then will
you progress from the low plane of our terrestrial sphere to
association with God, and eternity alone will mark the _ne plus ultra_
in intellectual and spiritual development toward the Divine Being.



PART III.--SELECTIONS.



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

I.--CHRIST THE LAMB OF GOD.

    "Behold, the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world"
    (John i. 29)


The New Testament presents a many-sided view of Christ. From each point
of view he appears in a new relation, and we study him in a different
character. We can see but one side of a mountain by approaching it from
only one direction. We must view it from every point from which it
presents a different aspect, before we have seen it as it is. So we
should study Christ in the many characters in which He is introduced
upon the sacred page, that we may understand more of the many dear
relations He sustains to us. The more we know of Him in His various
relations, the more we will love Him and the better we will serve Him.

We therefore purpose a number of articles under the general title of
"New Testament Views of Christ." They will appear, we trust, with as
much regularity as the press of other matters will permit.

After the temptation, Jesus returned to where John was baptizing, and
began the work of gathering about Him His apostles. On different
occasions, as Jesus moved among the multitudes during this visit, John
pointed Him out as the Lamb of God. And John said, "I knew him not; but
he that sent me to baptize in water, he said unto me, Upon whomsoever
thou shalt see the Spirit descending and abiding upon him, the same is
he that baptizeth with the Holy Spirit. And I have seen and borne
witness that this is the Son of God" (John i. 33, 34). Both before and
after this statement, John calls Him the Lamb of God. John knew that He
was to make the Messiah manifest to Israel by His baptism, for God had
told him so. He did not know Jesus to be the Christ till after His
baptism, yet he shrank back from the idea of baptizing him, and pleaded
his unworthiness. He was worthy, and specially appointed of God, to
make manifest the Messiah, but gave way under a sense of unworthiness
at the thought of baptizing his cousin, Jesus of Nazareth! What a flood
of light does this pour upon the private life of the Son of Mary! John
knew Jesus as a _man_; and while he doubtless had hopes that He was the
long-promised One, he did not _know_ it, and could not base his refusal
of baptism on that ground. John was baptizing for the remission of
sins, and required those whom he baptized to confess their sins, and
his knowledge of the spotless life of Jesus caused him to shrink at the
thought of administering to Him such a baptism. Thus impressed with the
purity and innocence of Jesus, it is not strange that he should call
Him the Lamb of God.

But innocence is not the only prominent feature in contemplating Jesus
as a lamb. The idea of sacrifice to which innocence and purity are
essential has pre-eminence. The first accepted offering on the earth,
of which we have an account, was a lamb. It was offered in faith; hence
by divine direction. That Abel saw anything in it beyond an act of
simple obedience to God in an arbitrary appointment, we have no reason
to believe. He did what God directed, and because it was directed. This
is the essential element of obedience in all ages, regardless of the
thing required. Nothing else can be the "obedience of faith."

What different conceptions had God and Abel of that sacrifice! Abel saw
in it only a "firstling of his flock." God saw in it His own Son--"the
Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world." Not only so, but on
this account was it directed. The fact that this was not revealed to
Abel, shows that God intends us to obey Him in what He directs, without
being concerned about the reasons He has for the requirement. He who
sees the end from the beginning makes the first in execution conform to
that which is to be last. Hence, the first act of worship, and every
subsequent act, from the divine point of view, harmonizes with the
perfection which in the fullness of times, was given us in Christ
Jesus. The lamb of Abel borrowed all its value and significance from
the Lamb of God. While we are enabled to see this through the
development of the scheme of redemption, he was not; and the fact that
his act of simple obedience in ignorance of God's far-seeing purposes
is recorded as an example for us, is of unspeakable value to the child
of faith.

During the four thousand years in which God was preparing the world for
Christ, both in patriarchal and Jewish worship, a lamb without spot or
blemish was the most prominent offering for sin. In every case the
offering was made as directed, and when made, the worshiper was assured
that his sin was forgiven. Christ is our sin-offering--the Lamb of God
that takes away our sins--and we must present Him before God as
divinely directed. We may build no strange fire on God's altars. We may
substitute nothing for Christ as an offering for sin, and no ways of
our own for God's way, in His presentation.

In viewing Christ as the Lamb of God--the Lamb slain from the
foundation of the world--the prominent feature of His saving
relationship to us is His _blood_. Hence we are redeemed, not with
silver and gold and perishable things, "but with the precious blood of
Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot." As a Lamb,
Christ is sin-atoning. His power to save is not in the innocence of His
life, but the merits of His death. The sacrifice of an innocent life is
God's wisdom and power to save the world. Let us remember it was for
_us_ He was led as a lamb to the slaughter; that _our_ sins were laid
upon Him; that He was bruised for _our_ iniquities; that He bore _our_
sins in His bosom on the tree; that by His stripes we are healed; that
in His innocent life and sacrificial death, we behold the Lamb of God
that taketh away the sin of the world.



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

II.--CHRIST THE BREAD OF LIFE.

    "I am the bread of life. Your fathers did eat the manna in the
    wilderness, and they died. This is the bread which cometh down out
    of heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living
    bread which came down out of heaven; if any man eat of this bread,
    he will live forever; yea, and the bread which I will give is my
    flesh, for the life of the world" (John vi. 48-51).


When the Israelites came out of Egypt and started on their wilderness
journey to the promised land, they found themselves without sustenance.
The land furnished no supplies. In this respect they were cut off from
earthly resources. In their emergency they cried unto the Lord, and God
gave them bread from heaven. Each day they gathered the necessary
supply. The amount for the Sabbath was gathered the day preceding.
Beyond this there was no collection for future use. An effort to save
it proved a disgusting failure. Forty years did the daily supply of
manna fail not, till they reached the land that God had promised.

The bread on which God fed His people from the land of bondage to the
land of Canaan was a type of Christ. This is asserted by both Paul and
the Saviour. As such it is worthy of careful study.

1. The Israelites were wholly dependent on the daily bread which God
gave. This was a want which the world could not supply. They must feed
upon the heaven-supplied food or die. So is every one thus dependent on
the bread of life. The world can not supply the wants of the child of
God. He needs a daily food which the world does not produce. The world
is to him a spiritual desert. He can not look to it to meet the wants
of his spiritual nature. Being born from above, he has to live from
above. When he seeks to gratify the cravings of his carnal nature by
turning back to the flesh-pots of Egypt, he languishes and dies.

Be it remembered that this bread of life is Christ. It is not some
theory about Him. It is not some system of theology of man's
formulation. Men may feed upon systems and theories till their souls
are dwarfed and starved. Such feeding makes partisans and cold-blooded
sectarians, without imparting divine life to the soul. We must come
directly to Christ. Through His holy word we must study Him, assimilate
our lives to His, feed upon Him as the bread from heaven, and drink in
of His gracious spirit. The world took knowledge of the saints of old,
that they had been with Jesus. And so it may now easily decide as to
those of such holy companionship.

2. Christ is the bread of life. As such He has to be appropriated.
There is no virtue in bread to sustain life until it is appropriated
and assimilated to the system. Men may starve within reach of
abundance. God supplies the bread of life, but He does not compel men
to eat it. They are urged to eat and live, but they may refuse and die.
Oh, the millions in our land who are starving for the bread of life,
when it is offered them day by day! Unless we eat the body of the Son
of God we have no life. Our salvation, therefore, depends upon eating.
Yet there is no virtue in the act of eating. The virtue is in the thing
eaten. It is not putting on your coat that makes you warm, but the coat
after it is on. Faith is a condition of salvation; but there is no
power to save in believing. The saving virtue is in the thing believed.
So we may substitute nothing for that which God has given. We must eat
the bread which God provides, else all our eating will be in vain.

3. It is well understood by all classes that the wants of the physical
man need to be daily supplied. To meet these demands, is the chief
concern of the great mass of humanity. Observe that young man. He is in
the vigor of robust manhood. He has just enjoyed a night's refreshing
sleep and a hearty breakfast. His system seems to be overflowing with
an excess of vitality. He goes forth to his work boastful of his
strength. But how many hours is it till nature cries aloud for the
replenishing of his strength? How long can he live on the boastful
supply of his physical manhood? A few days finds him as helpless as a
babe. So essential is physical food to physical life.

Nor is spiritual food less essential to spiritual life. As new-born
babes we need the unadulterated milk of the word, that we may grow
thereby. As men and women, we need the strong meat adapted to our
maturity. The great mistake is in trying to live the spiritual life
without spiritual food. The strong men in Christ are the good feeders.
Those who feed upon the bread of heaven will develop in that which is
heavenly. No man has religion enough at the start to take him through
life, unless he dies early. The foolishness of the five foolish virgins
consisted in their not taking an additional supply of oil. So it is now
with every one who does not daily replenish his supply of spirituality.
He who tries to live without communion with God--in reading, in
praying, in meditation and obedience to the divine will--will end in
shameful failure.

Christian character is a growth, not a divine impartation. God does not
give spiritual strength in an arbitrary way. He provides the means to
that end. If we use them, strength results. If we neglect them, we die
in feebleness. The means in the figure before us is the bread of life,
and the bread of life is Christ. There is an absolute necessity,
therefore, for feeding upon Him. From Him all spiritual strength is
derived. He is the source of all life. He said to His disciples:
"Without me, ye can do nothing." As the branch draws its nourishment
and fruit-bearing qualities from the vine, so we draw all spirituality
and fruitfulness from Christ. We are fruitful in proportion as we abide
in the Vine; and we are strong in proportion to our feeding on the
bread of life.

4. God permitted Israel to gather manna for one day only at a time. So
in teaching His disciples to pray, the Saviour said: "Give us this day
our daily bread." Our bread of life is a never-failing supply. There
was no need of laying up manna, for God gave a fresh and abundant
supply every morning. This daily supply never ceased till their
pilgrimage was over. Of this they had assurance. Hence an attempt to
lay up a supply for future use was to distrust the God of their
fathers. The true bread of heaven is as unfailing as was the typical
bread of the wilderness. God's people will ever have an abundant supply
of that bread of which, if a man eats, he shall never hunger. Hence the
Saviour says: "Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the
world."

5. The world has been greatly concerned about food for six thousand
years. The gratification of the appetite has both blessed and cursed
the race. Life has ever depended upon food; hence food has been the
chief concern of man. During the history of the world the race has been
ignorant of the processes of digestion and assimilation. They have
known nothing of the chemistry of this source of life. They have gone
on from age to age building up their bodies by taking food, wholly
ignorant of the process by which it was done. The value of the thing
eaten has never depended on a knowledge of the process by which it was
assimilated. We thank God that it is thus with the bread of life. We
may never expect to comprehend the "mystery of godliness" in this life.
Just how the bread of life enables us to live forever, we are not
concerned to know. It is enough for us to know that it is so. Let us,
then, appropriate this rich provision of God's grace, and the blessing
will be ours.



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

III.--CHRIST THE WATER OF LIFE.

    "Jesus answered and said unto her, Every one that drinketh of this
    water shall thirst again: but whosoever drinketh of the water that
    I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall
    give him shall become in him a well of water springing up unto
    eternal life" (John iv. 13, 14).

    "Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and
    cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink"
    (John vii. 37).

    "And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of a
    spiritual rock that followed them: and the rock was Christ" (I.
    Cor. x. 4).


Twice was a rock smitten by Moses in the wilderness to supply the
Israelites with water. The first was at Rephidim, in the wilderness of
Sin, during the first year of their Exodus, before they came to Mount
Sinai. The second was at Kadesh, in the wilderness of Zin, in the
fortieth year of the Exodus. It is evident that the apostle refers to
the first of these, though we can hardly think, with most commentators
known to us, that he does so exclusively. The fact that the rock
followed them, as a type of Christ, in their wilderness life, demands
that it be from the beginning, rather than the end, of their journey.
And the fact that many who drank of it fell in the wilderness, requires
the same conclusion. But for reasons yet to appear, we think the two
are considered as one. The miracle was in all respects the same in the
second as in the first. There was the same dependence for life on the
second as the first. There was the same necessity that the second rock
or stream should follow them as there was of the first; for they were
yet a long way from Canaan, with a waterless desert before them. We
can, therefore, see no reason why the first should be a type of Christ
and not the second.

Was it the stream or the rock which followed the Israelites? Paul says
the rock. But commentators seem generally to agree that the "rock" is
here put by metonymy for the water of the rock, Barnes says, "It would
be absurd to suppose that the rock that was smitten by Moses literally
followed them in the wilderness." Just why it is more "absurd" to
suppose the rock followed them, than the stream from a stationary
fountain at Horeb, we are wholly unable to see. Let us look at the
facts and probabilities in the case.

We must keep in view the important fact, as mentioned in the last
chapter, that these people were _dependent on God_. They had seen the
mighty hand of God in their delivery, and now they were to be taught
dependence on Him, as the only source of life. They had, therefore, to
be sustained by miraculous food and miraculous drink. The country
supplied neither food nor water. The miraculous supply of water was as
great a necessity as that of bread. For two or three millions of
people, with their flocks and herds, a large stream, even a small
river, would be required. It is also true that their cattle had to have
food, as well as themselves. Just how this was furnished, we are not
told. Here is a large field for conjecture. It is generally held that
the river continued to flow from a stationary source at Horeb, and that
it irrigated the country in its following of the people, and thus
caused vegetation for the flocks and herds. But in the fortieth year
they are again found without water. Why was this? What had become of
the river that had followed them from the first year, if it was the
river, and not the rock, that followed them? On this point we can not
refrain from quoting Macknight and Barnes, as examples of how learned
commentators, led by a theory, sometimes drop their readers into a
perfect abyss of darkness. Macknight says: "For as Wall observes, from
Horeb, which was a high mountain, there may have been a descent to the
sea; and the Israelites during the thirty-seven years of their
journeying from Mount Sinai may have gone by those tracts of country in
which the waters from Horeb could follow them, till in the thirty-ninth
year of the Exodus they came to Ezion-gaber (Num. xxxiii. 36), which
was a part of the Red Sea a great way down the Arabian side, where it
is supposed the waters from Horeb went into that sea." Barnes says:
"Mount Horeb was higher than the adjacent country, and the water that
thus gushed from the rock, instead of collecting into a pool and
becoming stagnant, would flow off in the direction of the sea. The sea
to which it would naturally flow would be the Red Sea. The Israelites
doubtless, in their journeyings, would be influenced by the natural
direction of the water, or would not wander far from it, as it was
daily needful for the supply of their wants. At the end of thirty-seven
years we find the Israelites at Ezion-gaber, a seaport on the eastern
branch of the Red Sea, where the waters probably flowed into the sea
(Num. xxxiii. 36). In the fortieth year of their departure from Egypt,
they left this place to go into Canaan, by the country of Edom, and
were immediately in distress again by the want of water."

These comments involve several objectionable features. (1) The
Israelites were guided in their course by the pillar of cloud and fire;
not by the stream of water on its course to the sea. (2) Paul says the
rock followed them; not that they followed the river. (3) We can not
allow that when God sets out to work a miracle, He is defeated by
natural causes. The idea that the river ran into the sea, and left the
children of Israel without water, just because the situation would
naturally lead to that result, is to let go the miracle and have God
defeated, because the surroundings are not favorable! The idea that God
could cause a river to flow from a flinty rock, and then have to leave
it to seek its natural way to the sea, leaving His people destitute
when the surface of the country would be in the way of its natural
flow, is equaled only by admitting that God created the heavens and the
earth, but could not give sight to the blind or call Lazarus out of the
grave. We, therefore, repeat the question, If the river followed the
people, what became of it when they came into the wilderness of Zin?

On the hypothesis that it was the rock which followed them, just as
Paul says it was, there is nothing unreasonable in the supposition that
for some cause, not given, God withheld the flow of water to chastise
them for their wickedness, as He did in other ways, and make them
realize their dependence. As favoring this idea, when they were
destitute the second time, and cried unto Moses in their distress, God
told him to gather the people together and speak unto _the rock_. Not
only was there a suitable rock present for the second river of water,
but it seemed to be a particular rock. Hence designated "_the_ rock."
Our conclusion is, therefore, that the two rocks were one; that it
followed the Israelites during their entire journey to Canaan,
supplying the people with the _fresh_ out-gushings of its crystal
stream. That rock was typical of Christ, and the blessings of Christ
are never stale or stagnant, as the water from a fountain in Horeb
would have been, after winding its sluggish way through the parched
desert of Arabia.

"That rock was Christ." That is, it was a type of Him. All those
transactions were typical. "Now these things happened unto them by way
of types; and they were written for our admonition."

"A dry and thirsty land where no water is," well represents this world
to one who has not an ever-present Saviour as the fountain of the water
of life. As the Israelites would have perished without the crystal flow
from the flinty rock, so perishes the world without Christ. There is no
appetite more distressing than thirst. There is nothing more delightful
than the cooling draught to the parched throat. Oh, to those who thus
"thirst after righteousness," how delightful it is to be "filled"! "As
the heart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after
thee, O God." Only the thirsty can appreciate drink; so only those who
first feel the need of a Saviour can experience the joy of salvation.
Not only shall the thirsty soul be satisfied that drinks of the water
of life, but it shall "become within him a well of water springing up
unto eternal life." This refreshing and ever-present fountain of life
flows for all. "If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink." To
slake one's thirst at this fountain, is a foretaste of the river of
life that flows from beneath the throne in the eternal city of God.
Many who drank of the typical water of the wilderness, fell under the
displeasure of God, and died short of the promised land. Hence we
should be careful to live ever near to the water of life, that our
thirsty souls may be continually supplied, and our strength renewed.
Only by being constantly refreshed can we be saved from perishing in
the wilderness and kept unto the land of God beyond.



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

IV.--CHRIST THE SON OF GOD.

    "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God" (Matt. xvi. 16).

    "Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God abideth
    in him and he in God" (I. John iv. 15).

    "And who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth
    that Jesus is the Son of God?" (I. John v. 5).


In one sense all men are sons of God. In a much dearer sense all
Christians are sons and daughters of the Almighty. But the relationship
of Christ to the Father is infinitely above this. He is _the_ Son of
God. God is His Father by direct production, without the agency of a
human father. The same divine power that can create life through the
agency of man, can create it without such agency. Hence there is
nothing to stumble over in the idea of the miraculous conception, to
one who fully accepts the God of the Bible in the character in which He
is revealed as a divine creator. To accept God as the creator of heaven
and earth, and then stagger at His performance of any miracle is a
logical absurdity.

Jesus claimed to be the Son of God in the high sense that involved
equality with the Father. He said: "I and the Father are one." On
account of this relationship, "He thought it not robbery to be equal
with God." His enemies understood that this equality was involved in
His claim; hence they charged Him with blasphemy in making Himself
equal with God.

This was a high claim on the part of the Nazarene. He claimed to be
more than a man. When some said that He was John, or Elijah, or
Jeremiah, or some one of the prophets, they underestimated Him
according to His claim. The greatest prophet, or inspired teacher, that
had ever appeared among men, _even if raised from the dead as the
special messenger of God to His people_, could not meet the demands
involved in the claim of Jesus, that He was the Son of God.

This high claim had to be sustained by two distinct lines of
testimony--miracles and a sinless life. The purpose of miracles is to
establish the claims of the miracle-worker and to glorify God. The
miracles of Jesus establish His divine mission and claim to the
Messiahship. No man could do the miracles He did "except God be with
him;" and God would not be with one who was advocating false claims.
The enemies of Jesus understood this; hence they said: "God heareth not
sinners." Miracles are the substratum of the foundation underlying our
faith.

While the divine claims of Jesus are attested by His miracles, the
evidence is crowned by His sublime character. His life is itself among
the most wonderful of miracles. As a child of poverty and a son of
toil, He lived thirty years among men. When He afterwards claimed to be
the Son of God, He had many bitter enemies. They persecuted Him even
unto death, and yet not one of them ever pointed to an act of His
private life as inconsistent with, or unworthy of, His divine claim.
This simple fact speaks volumes as to the purity of His life. The world
has contained but one such. The very life which His claims require is
the life revealed on the sacred page.

Infidels have ordinarily contented themselves with mere negations. They
seem not to realize the fact that in denying some things they are
logically bound to account for others. If we deny the claim of Jesus
that He is the Son of God, then we have to account for His miracles,
His life, the disposal of His entombed body, and the establishment and
development of His kingdom. These are facts. As such they have to be
accounted for. On the hypothesis that Jesus is the Christ, all
difficulty vanishes. On any other, it is more than the world has yet
been able to meet. Skeptics laud the character of Jesus as a model of
purity, such as the world has never elsewhere found, and yet deny the
claim on which was based His mission to men and on which He built His
church. How the establishment of a religion upon a known falsehood can
harmonize with a life of faultless purity, they do not pretend to tell
us, for it is a palpable absurdity. How His disciples could testify on
a point of fact in regard to which they could not be mistaken, and
surrender all worldly position and comfort, and life itself, to
establish a known falsehood in the hearts of men, in which they--the
witnesses--could have no personal interest, they leave in the Egyptian
darkness characteristic of their system. How can he account for
American history and American institutions who denies the existence of
Washington, or claims that he was a disreputable impostor? How, then,
shall he account for the history and institutions of civilization who
denies to Jesus of Nazareth existence as a man of that age and country,
or makes Him a base deceiver and vile impostor?

That Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, is the fundamental, pivotal
fact in the Christian religion. It underlies every other feature of the
Christian system. On it turn the value and significance of every other
item of the faith. Everything takes position with regard to this, and
derives its value from it. With this, all else stands by divine
appointment, and bears the seal of heaven. Without it, the whole system
is but as the chaff which the wind driveth away.

When the proposition is established that Jesus is the Son of God, every
other feature of the Christian system rests upon _authority_. Nothing
else has to be proved as this does. Before establishing this proposition,
the word of Jesus settles nothing. After its establishment, it settles
everything. When we accept Him as the Christ, we accept all else on His
authority. Hence He says, "Why do you call me Lord, Lord, and do not
the things which I say?" "All authority hath been given unto me in
heaven and on earth. Go ye therefore, and make disciples of all
nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father, and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit." The making and baptizing of disciples rests
upon the authority of Jesus, and that authority is based upon His
Messiahship. So of every other item of the Christian system of faith.

The great inconsistency and consequent weakness of the religious world,
is in not accepting the simple authority of Jesus as conclusive and
wholly sufficient on any matter on which He has expressed the divine
mind. As the Son of God and coronated Lord of lords, His authority is
supreme, and His word is law. What He says is to be accepted as
infallibly true, and the end of all controversy. Whatever He directs is
to be done, simply because He directs it. Whatever else we may consider
a corroborative reason, the direction of Jesus alone is to determine
our action. Only this can be the obedience of faith. And in regard to
what He directs, there can be no compromise. The King speaks to be
obeyed, not to be argued with. It is His prerogative to command; ours
to obey.

Jesus made His authority the controlling principle in His religion.
Where this is maintained, the religion of Christ is preserved in its
purity. Where it is disregarded, anything follows that the tastes and
follies of men may demand. The religion of Christ is pure or corrupt in
proportion as His authority is observed or ignored.

The authority of Jesus can not be separated from His appointments. His
entire authority is embodied in each of His appointments. Hence he who
disregards an appointment of Jesus Christ, disregards His authority.
And he who disregards His authority, ignores His Lordship. The man who
deliberately refuses to do what Christ directs, ignores the authority
of his Lord, and dethrones the Son of the living God. Yet how much of
this do we see among men! Not only in the world, but in the church as
well. It seems strange that one should make a profession of the
religion of Christ, and yet thus ignore His Lordship. The authority of
Jesus against a life of indifference in the church, of non-attendance,
of want of coöperation in the work of the Lord, against carnality,
pleasure-loving, worldliness, the lusts of the flesh, want of
spirituality, and such like, is as direct and positive as that against
rejecting the gospel of Christ; and yet how many church members, all
over our land, are disregarding the authority of Jesus in these
matters. Those who make a profession of religion and live in the church
without continuing to honor the Lord Jesus by regarding His authority
and complying with His will, would better have never known the way of
life. The authority of Jesus follows us to the grave, and is never
relaxed for a day. His will, not ours, is to rule in our life. Our
desires, however strong, are to be subordinated to the mind of Him who
gave His life for ours, and said, "all authority in heaven and on earth
is given unto me."

It is the height of inconsistency, therefore, to exalt the name of
Jesus in words and professions, and speak lightly of, or disregard any
one of His appointments. It is not only inconsistent; it is disloyal
and wicked. This is the great stumbling-block in our way to the
indorsement of Mr. Moody and such men. We care not what else he may be,
we can indorse no man who tears in two the commission of Jesus Christ.
He who refuses to "speak as the oracles of God speak," in order to
promote his work, is not doing the work that God would have him do. We
can not honor Christ without honoring His teaching, and we can not
honor His teaching by withholding a part of it from those inquiring the
way of eternal life. We can honor Jesus as the Son of God only by
declaring His whole counsel, and yielding submissively in all things to
His divine authority.

This acceptance of Jesus as an infallible teacher, as one whose every
word is to be believed simply because He said it, and whose every
direction is to be observed simply because He directs it, whose spirit
is to be possessed and cultivated to the transforming of the life, till
we grow into the divine image and become partakers of the divine
nature, is all involved in the "good confession": Jesus is the Christ,
the Son of the living God.



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

V.--CHRIST THE SON OF MAN.

    "The foxes have holes, and the birds of the heaven have nests; but
    the Son of man hath not where to lay his head" (Matt. viii. 20).

    "Who do men say that the Son of man is?" (Matt. xvi. 13).

    "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must
    the Son of man be lifted up; that whosoever believeth may in him
    have eternal life" (John iii. 14).


It is a matter of profound gratitude that our Saviour was a man. "The
Son of man," as well as "the Son of God," was essential to His great
work of bringing salvation to the race. In one sense we are all sons of
man, but not as He was. He was not simply the Son of Mary and her
ancestors. He was the Son of humanity. He was equally akin to the race.
He touches humanity at every angle and on every side. While He was the
Son of David according to the flesh, He is the kinsman of the race as a
partaker of our common nature. "Since the children are sharers in flesh
and blood, he also himself, in like manner, partook of the same." He
ignored all accidental relationships closer than this shared by the
race. The members of His own household obtained not a blessing which He
did not as freely bestow on others. The fact that He did not manifest
greater partiality toward His mother has been a matter of comment. The
simple fact is, that the relationship with which we are concerned, and
of which the inspired record treats, is to the race; hence it is not
concerned about His personal family affections. His brothers and
sisters and mothers are those who hear His word and keep it.

The world has ever had too far-away ideas of God. It has contemplated
God at a great distance. It puts Him beyond the stars. Indeed, the
stars fade away from view in the distance behind us, as we ascend in
imagination to the dwelling-place of the Most High. The world can never
be suitably impressed with God's presence while it holds Him at a
distance. He can never be sensibly near unto us while we keep Him
beyond the stars. Nor can we be influenced by the idea of His presence
till we learn that "he is not far from each one of us."

God tried to impress His people anciently with the idea of His presence
by various visible manifestations. Abraham realized time and again that
God was his present companion and friend. When Jacob saw the ladder
reaching to heaven, and angels ascending and descending on it, he said,
"Surely, the Lord is in this place." And when Moses drew near to see
the burning bush, a voice from its flame demanded the removal of the
sandals from his feet, for the ground on which he stood was holy
ground.

God impressed Israel with the awfulness of His presence as a Lawgiver,
whom the nations were to honor, by His voice from Mount Sinai which
"shook the earth." The glorious manifestation of God's presence at the
tabernacle, in the midst of the camp of Israel, impressed them with the
fact that the God of their fathers was with them; that He was in their
midst; that He had not forgotten His covenant; and that He would be
with them to sustain them in every emergency till the end. With all
this, they often forgot God and went astray. What would they have done
without it?

In the person of Jesus, God perfected the divine purpose of bringing
Himself into a realized nearness to the human family. He clothed
Himself in our humanity, and became one with us. We are thus enabled to
look upon Him, to contemplate Him, not as a great, self-existing
Spirit, incomprehensible and awful, but as a _man_. Jesus was a man;
and "in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily." He is God
manifest in flesh. And as God is thus manifest, would He have us
apprehend Him. Just, therefore, as we can appreciate the nearness of
Jesus as a loving and sympathizing kinsman, may we appreciate the
nearness of His Father and our God.

It is evident that men need a God to whom they can get sensibly near.
There is no profit in the worship of a God of abstractions. There is in
it no food for the soul. What is there to satisfy the languishing soul
in a prayer to the "Great Unknown and Unknowable"? They that come to
God must believe that He _is_. And that "is" is a personal divine
being, into whose arms we may cast our helpless selves, and on whose
bosom we may pillow our weary head; instead of a great, bewildering,
incomprehensible abstraction, "without body, parts, or passions."

We are brought into a sacred nearness with God in the life of Jesus.
From His bed in the manger to His rest in a borrowed grave, we have a
life of abject poverty. He was the friend and companion of the poor.
The world is full of poverty, and ever will be. But the poorest of
every age and country find a companion and friend, of like sufferings
with themselves, in the person of Jesus. The cares and sorrows of life,
resulting from poverty, of which the world knows most as a daily
burden, were fully realized by Him; and in it all He is a deeply
sympathetic friend.

Jesus was a man of labor. The hands so often extended to bless
humanity, and through which the cruel nails were driven, were hardened
by daily toil. He never did a day's work with which His employers found
fault. Long after He had built mansions in the skies for them that love
Him, were the houses of His own workmanship standing in Galilee; but
when He laid aside His tools to do the work of His Father, no man ever
pointed to an earthly house and said, "This job is not in harmony with
His claims to be the Son of God." He knew what it was to be tired and
hungry. He doubtless knew the meaning of hard work and low wages. It
follows, therefore, that every son of toil, every burdened and weary
life, has for a gracious Redeemer and providential Saviour one who was
"a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief."

Jesus was a man of temptation. He was tempted as no other man was ever
tempted. The devil is the author of temptation, and he had a peculiar
interest in the temptation of Jesus. Through temptation comes sin. Sin
is the yielding of the will under temptation to do wrong. The devil had
a special interest in inducing Jesus to sin. He was the representative
of the race. Their fortunes were all involved in His. The consummation
of His work as a Redeemer required a sinless life. Hence if Jesus could
be induced to yield to temptation, the world's hope of salvation was
forever gone. It is evident, therefore, that the devil exhausted his
resources to accomplish that end. Consequently He was "tempted in all
points like as we are," and infinitely beyond what we know of
temptation. And He who withstood Satan in every onset has promised to
be with us to the end, and suffer us not to be tempted above what we
are able, if we only keep Him between us and the enemy of our souls. It
is a source of profound gratitude that we have a Saviour who has felt
in all its forms the tempting power of sin, who is full of sympathy for
us in our temptations, and who has promised to ever be in such our
faithful friend. Hence the great apostle to the Gentiles, whose life
was full of temptation and trial, gives us a reason why we should "draw
near with boldness unto the throne of grace," that "we have not a high
priest that can not be touched with the feelings of our infirmities;
but one that hath been in all points tempted like we are; yet without
sin." This very fact in the character of our Saviour gives us humble
boldness to approach the throne of grace that nothing else could give.
When we have given way under temptation, and our souls are burdened
with a sense of sin, we can come to God through the mediation of Jesus,
with a confidence that His sympathy for us has been perfected by the
experience of His own earthly life. For Christ was perfected for the
special parts of His work by His mission among men. "For it become him,
for whom are all things, and through whom are all things, in bringing
sons unto glory, to make the author of their salvation perfect through
sufferings." "And having been made perfect, he became unto all them
that obey him the author of eternal salvation."

In order to accomplish the great work of redeeming the race, Christ had
to be a _man_. He had to be human, as well as divine. Hence it was just
as essential that He be the Son of man as that He be the Son of God. He
had to make an offering for sin, and that required a human body. Hence
he says, "Sacrifice and offering thou wouldst not. But a body didst
thou prepare for me." He had to be human in order to die, and divine in
order to conquer death. Hence, while we exalt His divinity, we must
none the less appreciate His humanity. We must not cease to contemplate
our Lord and Saviour as the Son of man.



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

VI.--CHRIST THE GREAT TEACHER.

    "We know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do
    these signs that thou does, except God be with him" (John iii. 2).

    "And it came to pass, when Jesus ended these words, the multitudes
    were astonished at his teaching: for he taught them as one having
    authority, and not as their scribes" (Matt. vii. 28, 29).

    "Never man spake like this man" (John vii. 46).


On "the great day of the feast"--the feast of the tabernacles--in the
second year of His ministry, Jesus was performing many miracles, and
there was great commotion among the people as to whether He was the
Christ. The chief priests and the Pharisees sent officers to take Him.
But they returned without Him. Then the chief priests and Pharisees
said, "Why did you not bring him?" They simply reply, "Never man so
spake." These were, doubtless, resolute men who were accustomed to
obeying orders. But in this case they did not obey orders, nor even try
to do it. Their excuse for not doing so was peculiar. They gave no
ordinary or natural circumstances as hindering the execution of orders.
They made no plea to exculpate themselves. They simply said, "No man
ever spake like this man." How, then, shall we account for this? There
was simply an unearthly majesty in the person, the manner and the words
of Jesus, that awed them into inaction. The very fact that such men
were so unnerved by the presence and words of Jesus, gives us an idea
of His majesty as a teacher, and of His power over men. Thus it was
that He could cleanse the temple, overturn the tables of the
money-changers, drive out the whole crew who were making merchandise of
the house of God, and no one resisted. When did the world produce
another man whose presence alone awed bold officers of the law into
disregard of duty, and the chastised multitude into non-resistance?

Jesus was the world's great teacher, and yet He was never taught. This
fact was recognized by those who knew His history. "The Jews therefore
marveled, saying, How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?"
Jesus explained it by saying, "My teaching is not mine, but His that
sent me." This is the only satisfactory explanation that can be given.
That Jesus was a man of unequaled wisdom, surpassing infinitely all the
great philosophers of renown, is freely admitted by the best informed
of modern skeptics. That the world has been influenced by His teaching
infinitely beyond what it has been by that of any other man, is not
denied. That the world regards His teaching to-day, after eighteen
hundred years from the day of His death as a malefactor and His rest in
a borrowed grave, as it has never regarded the teaching of another man,
is also an admitted fact. How shall we account for such
teaching--teaching of such accumulating power over ages and generations
of men--when He Himself was untaught? The world can not answer the
question except as Jesus answered it: "My teaching is not mine, but His
that sent me."

Christ was the only teacher among men who never made a mistake. After
nearly two thousand years, during which His teaching has been subjected
to the severest scrutiny, He stands without conviction as to a single
error. Its ethics, its morals, its righteousness, its philosophy, its
wisdom, its accuracy, have stood the test of the most rigid investigation.
How can this be accounted for on the hypothesis that Jesus was only a
man? The greatest of all other men, with the advantage of the world's
best facilities, and under teachers of renown, have furnished the world
with teaching full of mistakes and imperfections. If Jesus were only a
man, how came it that He was so infinitely superior to all other men?
And if thus superior in wisdom, righteousness and purity, how belie
Himself in claiming to be infinitely more than a man? It were
impossible. The two things are mutually destructive. Jesus furnishes
the only explanation: "My teaching is not mine, but His that sent me."

Jesus is _the_ teacher of the science of salvation. Others before Him
taught the things pertaining to salvation, but their teaching was all
by the Spirit of God, framed with reference to what His was to be.

Others, after Him, taught the way of life, but they taught it as they
received it from Him. When He ascended to the Father He sent the Holy
Spirit as His advocate. The Spirit imparted to the apostles what He
received from Christ. He took the words of the coronated Christ and
gave them to the apostles, and they spake as the Spirit gave them
utterance (see John xvi. 7, 15). It follows, therefore, that the
teaching of the apostles is as infallible as that of the Christ, for it
is simply His.

It was not the purpose of Jesus to teach the wisdom of this world. He
was not of this world, and His teaching was not with reference to this
world. He came from another world, and the things pertaining to another
world were the ultimatum of His teaching. The way of salvation is
purely a matter of revelation. Man knows nothing about it except what
God has revealed through Christ. The same is true as to that from which
we are saved, and that to which we are saved. We know nothing of God,
heaven, hell and eternity, except that which is revealed. All that we
know of sin and its remedy we learn from the great Teacher. The nature
and the consequences of sin we learn from the same source. The
revelation of God is at once the source and limit of our knowledge of
sin and righteousness, and their consequences. In the whole scheme of
redemption Christ is the central figure; and on it He is the great
teacher and supreme authority.

Christ, as a teacher of law and morals, legislates for the heart. Men
can take cognizance only of deeds. They can not know the heart. Hence
they can judge it only by outward manifestations. But Christ knew what
was in man. Hence He could legislate for man's thoughts, as well as his
deeds. Hence He says: "Ye have heard that it was said, Thou shalt not
commit adultery: but I say unto you, that every one that looketh on a
woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his
heart." Even the law of the Ten Commandments legislated against
adultery only as an outward act, but Christ legislates against the
thought. In this respect, as in many others, He is unique as a teacher.

Finally, He taught by His own authority. This was the cause of the
astonishment at the conclusion of the Sermon on the Mount. "The
multitudes were astonished at His teaching; for He taught them as one
having authority, and not as their scribes." The scribes taught that
which "was said to them of old time," and the traditions of men, but
Christ said, "I say unto you." Mark this feature in that discourse. A
dozen times does he say, "_I_ say unto you." This was in harmony with
that which was predicted of Him as a teacher. "Moses indeed said, A
prophet shall the Lord God raise up unto you from among your brethren,
like unto me; to him shall ye hearken in all things whatsoever he shall
speak unto you. And it shall be, that every soul which shall not
hearken to that prophet shall be utterly destroyed from among the
people." And in the presence of Moses and Elijah, the great teachers of
the past, the divine Father said: "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am
well pleased; hear ye him." All this recognizes one of the fundamental
principles in the Christian religion--the supreme authority of Christ.
The world seems slow to learn that what He said He said by His own
authority, whether personally or through the apostles and prophets;
that it needs no other support, and that it is the irrepealable
_law_ of the kingdom of God. Because we are not under the law, but
under grace, many conclude that we have a religious latitude in which
we may legislate for ourselves, forgetting that Paul says we are "under
law to Christ."

In our supreme ignorance we need a teacher--an infallible teacher; and
that we have in the person of Jesus. In order to become wise unto
salvation, we must hear and learn of Him. In believing what He says,
and doing what He directs, we have His divine assurance of salvation
from sin and a home in heaven.



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

VII.--CHRIST THE DELIVERER.

    "And he [Jesus] came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up; and
    he entered, as his custom was, into the synagogue on the sabbath
    day, and stood up to read. And there was delivered unto him the
    book of the prophet Isaiah. And he opened the book, and found the
    place where it was written,

        The spirit of the Lord is upon me,
        Because he anointed me to preach good tidings to the poor:
        He hath sent me to proclaim release to the captives,
        And recovering of sight to the blind,
        To set at liberty them that are bruised,
        To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.

    And he closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant, and sat
    down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fastened on him.
    And he began to say unto them, To-day hath this scripture been
    fulfilled in your ears" (Luke iv. 16-21).


This sublime passage is a quotation of Isaiah lxi. 1-3. It contains
several words indicating a character in which the Messiah was to
appear, strikingly appreciated by the Jews at the time of the prophecy.
Especially from the time of the Babylonish captivity did the Jews make
prominent the idea of a deliverer in the person of their promised
Messiah. "_Release_ to the _captives_" and "_liberty_ to the
_bruised_"--ill-treated by their captors--was to them a precious
proclamation, looked forward to with great anxiety, when deliverance
should be proclaimed and Israel should again be the free and favored
people of God.

Since this characteristic was so long appreciated as a matter of
prophecy, and Jesus announced its fulfillment in Himself, it is a
befitting occasion on which to briefly notice the relation of Christ to
prophecy. The understanding of this relationship is important at any
time, because it furnishes a valuable class of evidence as to the
Messiahship and divinity of Jesus. It is especially so at this time,
since infidels are making a special effort to destroy the value of
prophecy in this respect; and some from whom we should expect better
things seem to be assisting in the work.

A great deal of importance was given to Messianic prophecies during the
days of the Saviour and the apostolic age of the church. Indeed, this
was the main source of evidence to the Jewish mind that Jesus was the
Christ. And the use made of it by Christ and the apostles shows that it
was abundant.

When Jesus talked with two of the disciples on their way to Emmaus, on
the day of the resurrection, He said to them: "O foolish men, and slow
of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! Behooved it
not the Christ to suffer these things, and to enter into his glory? And
beginning from Moses and from all the prophets, he interpreted to them
in all the scriptures the things concerning himself." Here Jesus
Himself states that Moses and all the prophets prophesied of Him. And
when He had returned to Jerusalem, and stood in the midst of the
eleven, He said to them: "These are my words which I spake unto you,
while I was yet with you, how that all things must needs be fulfilled
which are written in the law of Moses and the prophets and the psalms
concerning me." Thus the books of Moses, and all the prophets, and the
psalms, contained teaching concerning the Christ, according to Jesus'
own statement; and it was all in the form of type and prophecy. Indeed,
types are but forms of prophecy.

Jesus charged the Jews with not believing Moses, and gave that as the
reason why they did not believe on Him. He said: "For if ye believe
Moses, ye would believe me: for he wrote of me. But if ye believe not
his writings how shall ye believe my words?" Like modern skeptics, they
did not believe the writings of Moses concerning the Messiah--did not
believe that they referred to the Messiah; hence their value was
destroyed, and they did not believe in Jesus. Had they believed these
prophecies they would have believed on Christ.

On the day of Pentecost Peter convinced the three thousand by argument
from prophecy concerning the Christ. In his sermon in Solomon's porch
the argument was likewise based upon prophecy. Paul's manner of
preaching (see Acts xvii. 1-3) was to show the prophecies of the Old
Testament concerning the Messiah and then show that these were
fulfilled in Jesus of Nazareth. Therefore the conclusion was
necessitated that He was the Christ. As this was Paul's method, he
evidently attached to prophecy the highest possible value. That all the
apostles did this is evident from the statement of Peter. Speaking of
their being "eye-witnesses of His majesty," and of the infallible signs
He gave of His divinity, he says: "And we have the word of prophecy
made more sure; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a lamp
shining in a dark place."

How are we to determine the Messianic prophecies? We unhesitatingly
reply, by the example of Christ and the apostles. Three important
points are established by their testimony: (1) They teach that such
prophecies are numerous, and made by Moses, David, and all the
prophets. (2) They quote or refer to specifically, and thus apply,
quite a number. It is evident that these are Messianic, because so
applied. (3) Since Christ and the apostles designate a large number as
Messianic, we are safe in concluding that others are so that are of
like character. They are infallible judges, and they furnish us a
criterion by which to judge.

It is not true, as claimed, that in order to a Messianic prophecy, the
prophet making it must so understand it at the time. On the contrary,
Peter tells us that they searched diligently to ascertain the things
and the time of them referred to in their own prophecies concerning the
sufferings of the Christ and the glory that was to follow. (See I. Pet.
i. 10-12). They, therefore, did not understand the things or the time
referred to. Since they did not know these, they did not know that the
prophecy referred to the Messiah. The same Peter did not understand
some of his own utterances on the day of Pentecost. His language here
makes the promise of salvation to Gentiles as well as to Jews. But he
did not so understand it till he had a special revelation at Joppa and
the house of Cornelius.

Nor is it true, as claimed, that a Messianic prophecy must have been so
understood by the people before its fulfillment. Many of the Messianic
prophecies were not understood as such in Old Testament times. The
Saviour charged this want of understanding upon His disciples, and told
them that if they had correctly interpreted Moses and the prophets, in
this very respect, they would have known that His death was required by
such prophecies, and they would not have received the story of His
resurrection as an idle tale. Moreover, He charged the Jews that this
failure to understand Messianic prophecies, as such, was the ground of
their not believing on Him. (See John v. 45-47).

In regard to types, which is a feature of prophetic teaching, and a
strong chapter of evidence as to inspiration, Clark Braden says: "There
are but few real types in the Bible; that is, there are but few things
that men devised and acted with the intention of symbolizing or
typifying anything future. There are exceeding few that were devised or
acted with that as their sole object." It would be difficult for one to
crowd more flagrant error into the same space than the above contains,
if he were to make it a specialty. It contains the following positions,
all of which are false: (1) That there are but few types in the Bible.
(2) That types are _devised_ by _men_. (3) That types were "devised and
acted" by the same party. (4) That they were "devised and acted" by men
with the intention of typifying something future. (5) That this, in
order to their value as evidence of inspiration, should have been
"their sole object." This will do quite well for five lines. We would
suggest that _God_ devised types, not men. While men were the actors,
they were not the originators. While men may not have intended to
typify anything in the case, God did. While types were intended by God
to typify something future, this was not "their sole object." God had
in them a purpose for the actors in addition to their typical
significance. The purpose they then served detracts not from their
value as types. As to the comparative number, we prefer Paul as
authority. Speaking of the wilderness life of the Israelites, from
their baptism in the cloud and in the sea, he says: "Now these things
happened unto them by way of types [_tupoi_], and they were written for
our admonition." This history contains numerous types, Paul being
judge. Indeed, the patriarchal and Jewish religions were mainly
typical. When Noah built the ark to the saving of his house, it is not
probable that he thought of anything typical. Certainly that was not
the only purpose, nor the main purpose. But Peter says it was a type,
all the same.

The fact that God's people did not understand the full significance of
their worship, did not destroy its character or its value. The same is
true now. While God's oppressed people worshiped in types and symbols
which foreshadowed the perfection to come, they were taught by the
spirit of prophecy to look with longing anxiety to the coming of a
deliverer. While, in debate, we may not rely on a large number of
prophecies as Messianic, because the proof is not conclusive, it does
not effect the fact that many of them have that character.

To appreciate Christ as a deliverer one must realize his own
bondage--the slave of sin, and sold under its power. There is no
appreciation of the Deliverer till there is a longing for deliverance,
and no longing for deliverance till there is a hatred of bondage. Hence
one must have a just sense of the heinousness of sin before he can
appreciate Christ as a Saviour.

In coming to this world to deliver us, Christ had, in a sense, to come
within the dominion of Satan, and under the assaults of sin. This is
typfied by Moses going into Egypt to deliver his brethren. He had to
place himself under the reign of Pharaoh, and in order to deliver his
brethren he had to deliver himself. The Son of God took upon Him our
humanity. This He had to do to make a sacrifice and be a mediator for
us. In doing this He placed Himself under the tempting power of sin,
and was tempted in all points as we are. He had to save Himself from
this condition before He could save us. This was done through death and
the resurrection. With Him the old life ceased at the cross, and the
new one began from the grave. He conquered Satan--dragged the captor
captive--and was forever delivered from his tempting power. "He died
unto sin once," says Paul; and we die to sin just where He did, being
put to death by the cross. We are buried with Him, and rise with Him to
walk in newness of life. Thus the new life begins with us just where it
began with Him--from the grave--the grave of baptism in which we are
buried together and rise together. The denominational world want to
make the new life begin from the cross. But it did not thus begin with
Jesus, and Paul says it does not thus begin with us.



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

VIII.--CHRIST THE GREAT PHYSICIAN.

    "They that are whole have no need of a physician; but they that are
    sick. I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to
    repentance" (Luke v. 31, 32).

        "For this people's heart is waxed gross,
        And their ears are dull of hearing,
        And their eyes they have closed;
        Lest haply they should perceive with their eyes,
        And hear with their ears,
        And understand with their heart,
        And should turn again,
        And I should heal them" (Matt. xiii. 15).

    "He hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted" (Luke iv. 18).


Several times, either directly or indirectly, Christ alludes to Himself
as a physician. In this character He is worthy of careful study.

The first thing in order to appreciate a physician, is to realize that
one is sick. The Saviour says the well need not a physician. It is
equally true that the well care not for a physician. Sin is the disease
of which Christ, as a physician, is the healer. The disease is deadly.
The smallest amount is fatal. The Great Physician alone can heal it.
There is no other remedy. When a man is once affected, however much he
may keep it under control, and prevent its increase, there is never a
diminution of the disease till the remedy of the Great Physician is
applied.

There is much senseless talk about depravity that necessarily implies,
though its advocates may not so intend, that sin has comparatively
little condemnatory force. The idea so often expressed that one must be
"a great sinner in order to need a great Saviour;" that if he is only
"partially depraved, he needs to be only partially saved;" that he must
be "totally depraved in order to be totally lost;" that he must be
"totally depraved in order to be wholly dependent on Christ for
salvation," and such like, necessarily puts a light estimate upon sin.
The idea is, that if one has but a comparatively small amount of sin,
he is not wholly lost and utterly helpless, and wholly dependent on
Christ. When the simple fact is, that sin is so heinous in its
character and condemnatory in its consequences, that any amount of it,
whether much or little, renders one as helpless and hopeless and
dependent on Christ as if he were totally depraved by nature and doubly
defiled by a life of sin. There is, therefore, no necessity for total
depravity, in order that man be in an utterly lost and helpless
condition without Christ. A grain of strychnine is just as fatal as an
ounce, without an antidote.

In order that we appreciate a physician, and avail ourselves of the
benefits of his skill, we must have faith in him. Without faith that
his skill is superior to ours, and that he can help us, we will not
call upon him. If we have faith in him we will do as he directs. The
highest evidence of faith in a physician, and the surest way of being
benefited by his skill, is in going precisely by his directions. Some
years ago the writer had a long spell of typhoid fever. His physician
came to see him one hundred and thirty times. After he became
convalescent, his physician said to him one day, "In looking back over
your case, I can attribute your recovery to but two things--your
unyielding resolution and confidence, and your faith in your
physician." What did he mean by faith in my physician? What had that to
do with it? He explained. "For," said he, "you followed my directions
minutely in everything, and for more than seven weeks the least wabble
would have turned the scale against you." This was a fine illustration
of faith, but theologically he attached to the word a very different
idea.

Such must be our faith in the Great Physician that we apply to Him for
the treatment of a sin-sick soul. And having called upon Him, we are to
follow His directions. On one occasion He said to the Pharisees, "Why
do you call me Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?" So in
this case He would say, "Why do you call on me as a physician, and do
not as I direct you?" As well apply to an earthly physician and expect
to be healed by faith in his skill, without taking his medicine or
following his directions in other respects, as to expect the Great
Physician to heal you in the same way. This illustrates the absolute
folly of expecting to be "justified by faith only" in the Great
Physician of souls, before and without doing as He directs. Our faith
in a physician is valuable only as it induces us to take his remedies.
When it leads to this, it has fulfilled its only office. When it does
not lead to this, it is worthless. So of our faith in Christ. The only
value of faith is in its leading to the observance of the divine will.
The faith that does this saves, because it leads us to where God saves
us. God promises salvation in the doing of His will. "Not every one
that says unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven;
but he that doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven." Faith leads
to the doing of the Father's will. In this it performs its only office,
and in this it saves. Faith can have value only as it leads to the
appropriation and use of the remedies prescribed.

It is often the case that a physician is stationary, and his patients
have to come to him in order to get the benefits of his treatment. In
such case, the acts necessary to take us to him are essential to our
recovery, though they have no virtue whatever except as means of
reaching him. So of coming to Christ. Christ does not come to the
sinner, as orthodox prayers at the mourners' bench imply; but He
invites the sinner to come to Him. "Come unto me, all ye that labor and
are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." "And you will not come to
me that you may have life." Believing on Christ is one thing, and
coming to Him is quite another. One must first believe before he will
come. Yet, in addition to believing, the orthodox world, so-called,
utterly fails to tell us how to come to Christ. They cry, "Come, come,"
but tell us not how. Christ plainly teaches that we come to Him in
obedience. We are baptized into Him; into His body. We put Him on by
baptism. Being baptized into Christ is Paul's explanation of how we
become the children of God by faith. "Ye are all sons of God, through
faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ
did put on Christ." We come to Christ, then, in baptism. This is the
first overt act in the "obedience of faith." Our faith, repentance and
baptism bring us to Christ; then He, as the Great Physician, heals our
sin-sick soul. There is no healing virtue in these things that bring us
to Him; but they are conditions of our healing because they are means
of our reaching the Physician.

The remedy for sin is the Physician's own blood. That is the only thing
in the universe of God that can heal the disease of sin, and remove the
ruinous consequences. "The blood of Jesus Christ, his Son, cleanses
from all sin." The blood of animal sacrifices could not take away sin.
"For it is impossible that the blood of bulls and goats should take
away sins." Since animal sacrifice could not meet the demands of the
law, God prepared a body for His Son in which to make a sacrifice.

    "Sacrifice and offering thou wouldst not,
    But a body thou didst prepare me."

Hence we are redeemed from the curse of sin, not with corruptible
things, "but with precious blood, as of a lamb without blemish and
without spot, even the blood of Christ." "And without the shedding of
blood there was no remission."

It is plain, therefore, that the blood of the Physician is the only
remedy. This remedy is freely given when we come to Him.

Jesus said: "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so
must the Son of Man be lifted up; that whosoever believeth may in him
have eternal life." The Israelites were commanded to look upon the
brazen serpent; and they that looked were healed. They had to have
faith, in order to look with a view to being healed. Looking was the
thing commanded. It was the result of faith. In looking they were
healed. But there was no virtue in the looking. Looking, in and of
itself, had no power to heal. Still it was essential to the healing.
Neither had the thing looked upon any power to heal. There was no
virtue in the serpent. The healing power lay back of that. It was in
God, who had promised. God did the healing. But while there was no
healing virtue in the look nor in the thing looked upon, they were
necessary to the healing, because to this end were they commanded. They
were, therefore, necessary to bring one to the point in the obedience
of faith where God promised to heal. So it is with the Great Healer of
souls. They that believe shall _in Him_ find the healing power. Their
faith leads them to Him, where the healing power is applied, as the
look brought the Israelites to the healing power of God. Our obedience
that brings us to Christ is the outgrowth of our faith, just as their
look was the outgrowth of theirs. There is no healing virtue in the one
nor the other, but they were and are necessary to bring the believer
where the healing virtue is.

After all that is said about being saved by faith, and by other things,
it is simply true that _Christ_ saves us. _He_ is our Saviour. And He
saves us by means of His own blood.

    "There is a fountain filled with blood,
      Drawn from Immanuel's veins;
    And sinners plunged beneath that flood
      Lose all their guilty stains."

It is thus that Christ is precious to us as the great Physician of
souls. We should give heed to His inviting voice, place ourselves under
His continued care, follow His directions, and we shall enjoy a healed
and healthful state of the soul.

    "The great Physician now is near,
      The sympathizing Jesus;
    He speaks, the drooping heart to cheer:
      Oh, hear the voice of Jesus."



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

IX.--CHRIST OUR MEDIATOR.

    "For there is one God, one mediator also between God and men,
    himself man, Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all; the
    testimony to be borne in its own time" (I. Tim. ii. 5-6).


A mediator is one who comes between alienated parties to effect a
reconciliation. He must be the friend, the advocate and equal of both
parties. Failing in one of these, he is incapacitated. No one would
accept a mediator whom he believed would be wanting in any of these
respects in his relations to him. No one is fit to mediate who is not
qualified to do justice to both parties. This he can not do unless he
knows the rights of both and is the friend of both. He must be unbiased
in his judgment and impartial in his friendship. He must be considered
the equal of both, in so far, at least, as his knowledge of them and
his ability to judge between them is concerned.

A mediator between God and men implies alienation between them. The
history of the race shows this to be true. The time was when they were
one; when not a feeling or a shadow came between them. The bliss of
Eden reached its daily acme when the footfall of God was heard amid its
bowers. The hour that He joined their company was that of supreme joy.
But man sinned, and then the presence of God was shunned. That which
was delightful before is painful now. Such is the principle of
congeniality; and such the consequences of sin--to make of heaven a
hell. This fact alone should teach us that it lies not within the
limits of divine power to make a heaven for sinful men. Separation from
God is hell; and with the soul defiled by sin, union is worse than
separation.

After the fall of man he could no longer stand in the immediate
presence of God, as he was wont to do before. Sin can not approach the
divine presence, hence he needed a mediator, one to stand between him
and an offended God, through whom he might again be heard and blessed.
Mediators of an imperfect and typical character were had in that age of
preparation for the coming perfection. But where could a perfect
mediator be found to stand between an offended God and rebellious man?
Where in all the universe could one be found the friend and equal of
both parties? Where could one be found that could stand on equality
with God, know what was just and right in regard to Him, and, at the
same time know the weaknesses, the wants and the rights of man? Where
was one who could poise with one hand the scales of God's justice and
gather fallen humanity to his bosom with the other? The boundless
dominions of God contained not such a being. Man could not thus act,
for the best of men are themselves sinners, and can approach God only
through a mediator. The best of men know nothing of God's side of this
matter, and they fall below equality with Him, as the earth is below
the stars. An angel could not stand between God and men, for he can not
descend to equality with fleshly natures, to know their weaknesses and
their wants; nor can ascend the heights of divine perfection till he
knows the mind and the rights of God. In the Divine Logos, and the
Divine Spirit we find, in a sense, equality with God, but no equality
with men. How, then, is this great problem, that on which the world's
salvation turns, to be solved? The human and the divine must be
blended. They must meet and dwell in one. This is accomplished, not by
lifting the human up to the divine, but by bringing the divine down to
the human. God glories in condescension.

The Word that was in the beginning with God, that was God in His divine
attributes, became flesh and dwelt among us. In the person of the babe
of Bethlehem we have a being that never before existed--a being both
human and divine. He brought from the skies the divinity of His Father,
and dwelt among men with the humanity of His mother. Hence the mighty
chasm between man and God, between earth and heaven, is bridged over in
the God-man, Christ Jesus. His divinity reaches half-way from heaven to
earth, and His humanity half-way from earth to heaven, and the two
unite in Him.

In the life of Jesus we see His two natures constantly manifested. As
He hungers and thirsts and sleeps; as He weeps over the sins of men,
and sorrows over their afflictions, we see His humanity. He seems to be
only a man. But when He stills the tempest on the Sea of Galilee, or
calls Lazarus back to life, we see His divinity. It is interesting to
study His life with a view to the manifestation of His two natures in
each event--their distinctness and their blending.

We may never know in this life the reasons for the blending of the
divine and the human in the person of the mediator. These things are
doubtless beyond the ken of an archangel, in all their fullness. Yet
from our point of view, obscured by our fleshly weakness, we may see
some reasons lying on the surface why this was a necessity. Some of
these let us consider.

Man fell through the weakness of the flesh and the power of temptation.
Satan works through the flesh to pollute the spirit. In order to be one
with us in our temptation, and perfect Himself as an experimental
sympathizer, our mediator must be tempted in all points like as we are,
that He may know how we feel under temptation. This demanded that He
take upon Himself not the nature of angels, but that of the seed of
Abraham. He must, therefore, be a man. But this temptation is to be
successfully met. It is to be without sin. No man had ever successfully
withstood the assaults of Satan. Our mediator was to do this. Hence the
necessity of divinity. He must be human to be tempted; He must be
divine to resist it. And to make His victory the more complete, He had
His flesh put to the sorest test. After a fast of forty days, when His
long pent-up hunger rushed upon Him as a lion upon its prey, Satan
approached and exhausted his strength to overcome Him. Not only did He
give Satan this advantage, such as he had never had nor needed over
men, but He even went out of the flesh, into the citadel of which Satan
held the keys, and came out a triumphant conqueror. Hence His humanity
in order to enter in; His divinity in order to come out.

The scheme of redemption contemplated a sacrifice for the sins of the
world. Men must get rid of sin. They had no power of themselves to do
this. Sin must be remitted. This demanded a sacrifice for sin. "Without
the shedding of blood there is no remission." The blood shed must be
the blood of humanity. It must contain the life under condemnation.
Hence the "blood of bulls and of goats could not take away sin." It
could not reach and cleanse the conscience. It was used as an imperfect
type, but the perfection required the blood that courses in human
veins; but the victim must be innocent. It must be absolutely free from
sin. Only a sinless offering can meet the requirements of the divine
government. Hence, in order to offer the blood of the condemned race,
our mediator must be human; in order to offer it in innocence, He must
be divine.

The completion of the preparation of our mediator for His work as such,
required His death and resurrection. It is shocking to the mind of some
to speak of Christ having to be educated and perfected for His office
of mediator, but this He asserts Himself. "For it became him, for whom
are all things, and through whom are all things, in bringing many sons
unto glory, to make the author of their salvation perfect through
sufferings." "Though he was a Son, yet learned he obedience by the
things which he suffered; and having been made perfect, he became unto
all them that obey him, the author of eternal salvation." This
officiating for man as mediator and high priest, is the only thing, as
we now remember, in which Christ is said to have been specially
qualified by His life among men. This is significant. The reasons for
it are easily seen in the foregoing. He had to become a man, and these
things peculiar to humanity He had to learn.

In offering Himself a sacrifice for sin, our mediator had to die. In
order to His work as such, of which His death was only preparatory, He
had to live again. His death was voluntary. He said, "I have power to
lay down my life, and I have power to take it up again." In order to
lay down His life, He had to be human; in order to take it up again, He
had to be divine.

Having accomplished His preparatory work, Christ returned to the Father
to make an atonement, and to sit henceforth as a mediator between God
and men. He was equal with God before He left the heavens; He became
the equal of man in His sojourn in the world. Hence He is now perfectly
qualified for His work. But we find that we can not dispose of this
subject in one chapter.



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

X.--CHRIST OUR MEDIATOR.--CONTINUED.

    "But now hath he [Christ] obtained a more excellent ministry, by
    how much also He is the mediator of a better covenant, which was
    established upon better promises" (Heb. viii. 6).


Having considered Christ's preparatory work, His earthly mission, we
wish now to consider His office and work as mediator between God and
men. Christ sought no additional honor because of His message to men
and suffering on their account. On the contrary, He prayed: "And now, O
Father, glorify thou me with thine own self, with the glory which I had
with thee before the world was." But while He sought no additional
glory, He found additional work. The office He now fills existed not
till He ascended to the Father from an empty grave. He descended into
the dominion of death and robbed it of its power. He dragged the captor
captive, and gave gifts unto men. Ascending, as a conquering king, His
angelic retinue raise the exultant shout: "Lift up your heads, O ye
gates, and be ye lifted up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory
shall come in." "Who is this King of glory?" the guardian hosts shout
back. "The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle." Again,
the gates of the eternal city are shaken with the shout: "Lift up your
heads, O ye gates; even lift them up, ye everlasting doors; and the
King of glory shall come in."

Christ was coronated King of kings and Lord of lords. He began at once
His work of mediation. Through the Holy Spirit, sent as His advocate,
He convicts men of sin, and brings them into harmony and union with
God. His mediatorship involves a work of reconciliation. This is His
fundamental work. The old theology was that Christ labors to reconcile
God to men. Indeed, the world is not yet as free from the thought as
the truth and the honor of God demand. Whatever may be true of the
atonement, one thing is certain, it grew out of the love of God. "God
so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever
believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life." Any theory,
therefore, that does not harmonize with this is false. God already
loves the world. He loves sinners, even, who are not penitent. He is
not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to
repentance. How dishonoring to God, then, to represent Him as unwilling
to save agonizing sinners; so that the protracted prayers of the church
are necessary, and often unavailing! Paul says that God was in Christ,
reconciling the world unto Himself. The world had transgressed, had
gone away from God, and Christ's mission as mediator, is to bring it
back in agreement and submission to the divine will.

The importance of the mediatorial office of Christ is very improperly
apprehended. The necessity of a mediator between us and God can never
be fully realized in this life. This belongs to that association of
deep and profound mysteries emanating from the mind of God, that angels
intently desire to look into. We are permitted to see only the surface
in this life. But we know enough about the general character of His
work, to know, that it has a value far above the world's comprehension.

When one stands as our intercessor we are favored in proportion to his
standing with the other party. When one seeks a favor at the hands of
the chief executive of the nation, if he has no standing of his own,
all depends on the standing of his advocate. If the one interceding for
him stands high in the president's favor, and has great influence with
him, his request is favorably considered on account of his advocate.
When we consider the standing of the Son with the Father; that through
Him the Father has sought the reconciliation of the world; that He is
the "brightness, the Father's glory, and the express image of his
person;" we have perfect confidence that His pleadings will prevail.
But when the Father "so loved the world as to give his Son to die for
it;" when He so loves sinners that His great loving heart goes out in
yearnings for their salvation, why should His loving, struggling
children need an intercessor with Him at all? This has been one of the
questions of the ages. Theories more curious than satisfactory have
been promulgated concerning it by the different schools of theology. We
shall not presume to answer it, beyond the simple suggestion that this
was the special work for which the divine Logos that was in the
beginning with God, had to qualify Himself by special education. Hence
it is a matter not of difference between the love and goodness of the
Father and that of the Son, but of qualification by _experience_ in the
trials, temptations and weaknesses of the flesh. The consideration of
this fact would have saved the world from much vain speculation.

When Paul argues the importance of a mediator, it is not on the ground
that the Son loves us more than the Father, but on the ground that He
knows us by experience. "For we have not a high priest that can not be
touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but one that hath been in
all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us, therefore,
draw near with boldness unto the throne of grace." The fact that our
high priest, or intercessor, was "tempted in all points, like as we
are," is the reason why we may approach a throne of grace with
boldness. This boldness is simply a profound confidence based upon the
humanity of our mediator.

When we approach a throne of grace, conscious of sin and imperfection,
how little can we trust ourselves. We realize that we come empty-handed
before God. With the poet, each can sing:

    "Nothing in my hands I bring,
    Simply to Thy cross I cling."

We can plead no merit of our own. We have no legal claim on the
store-house of God's boundless mercy and love. But we remember that we
have a Friend; that this Friend has suffered the same trials and
temptations; that He knows by bitter experience just how we feel; that
He deeply sympathizes with us, and that He loves us with a devotion and
faithfulness beyond human experience or expression. Remembering this,
how can we feel otherwise than confident that an already loving Father
will hear our petitions in harmony with His will, and bless us as His
believing children? The efficacy of prayer, therefore, grows out of the
mediatorship of Jesus, and the confidence in prayer grows out of our
appreciation of the mediator and of His work. Hence a light
appreciation of the mediatorial work of Jesus leads to a prayerless
life.

Jesus Himself taught that there is no way of approach to the Father
except through Him. "I am the way, the truth and the life; no man
cometh unto the Father but by me." No man can approach God _in his own
name_. God does not look upon men in their own personality. He looks
upon them only _through their mediator_; and what He sees to commend,
is seen and commended only through, and on account of, their mediator.
In other words, God sees the mediator only, not them. Hence the man
that does not accept the mediator cuts himself off from God. He rejects
the only way of approach to God. He prevents God's considering his
case; for God considers us only through the mediator. It is this fact,
that God considers the mediator through whom the petition is made,
rather than the petitioner, that gives significance to the fact that
our prayers are to be _in the name_ of Jesus Christ; and that we ask
that our petitions be granted for "Christ's sake." At a throne of grace
we present the name of our intercessor. We ask in _his name_, not our
own. We present Him, not ourselves. We hide ourselves behind Him, put
Him in our place, and ask what God will do for Him. He authorizes us to
thus use His name, and the blessings bestowed are just to the extent
that that name prevails with God. Should Vanderbilt grant you the legal
right to use his name to the full extent of your desire in presentation
of checks, etc.; with his pledge to redeem all paper bearing his
signature in your hand, his whole fortune would be pledged to meet the
demands of your drafts upon him. Bankrupt financially, as you are
spiritually, you present your check for a large amount and it would be
rejected. But add to that the name of Vanderbilt, and your check is
honored. You draw the money not in your name, but in his. The bank sees
not you, but him. Now, just as you would thus present the name of
Vanderbilt, with full assurance of your request being granted to the
extent of his fortune, you to-day present the name of Jesus at the
court of heaven, and a heaven honors that name; its resources are
pledged to meet your petition. The name of Jesus, therefore, when thus
presented, means to us all that it signifies in the government of God.
To the extent that His name is honored are heavenly blessings secured
to us.

In the light of these sublime truths, we see the significance of the
Saviour's requirement that henceforth all prayer should be offered in
His name. "Verily, verily, I say unto you, if ye shall ask anything of
the Father, he will give it to you in my name. Hitherto ye have asked
nothing in my name; ask, and ye shall receive." What is called the
Lord's Prayer, is not in His name, because His mediatorship had not
then been established. But now it would be sinful to repeat that
prayer, as thousands do, and omit to offer it in the name of Christ.
The custom of Masons, and other secret orders, of having a form of
religion that ignores Christ, that does not recognize His mediatorship
and that is not offered in His name, is supremely wicked. It is a gross
perversion of the religion of Jesus. And how Christian men, even
preachers of the gospel, can find it in their hearts to acquiesce in
such a thing, is to us a profound puzzle. The institution that has no
place for my Master has no place for me.

The only way of approach to God is through Christ as our mediator; and
the mediatorial office of Christ is in the church, not in the world.
Hence, as God can be glorified only through Christ, He can be glorified
only through the church. Paul, recognizing this, says: "Unto God be
glory in the church, by Christ Jesus, throughout all ages, world
without end. Amen."



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

XI.--CHRIST OUR HIGH PRIEST.

    "Now, if there was perfection through the Levitical priesthood (for
    under it hath the people received the law), what further need _was
    there_ that another priest should arise after the order of
    Melchisedec, and not be reckoned after the order of Aaron? For the
    priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also
    of the law. For he of whom these things are said belongeth to
    another tribe, from which no man hath given attendance at the
    altar. For it is evident that our Lord hath sprung out of Judah; as
    to which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priests. And _what we
    say_ is yet more abundantly evident, if after the likeness of
    Melchisedec there ariseth another priest, who hath been made, not
    after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an
    endless life, for it is witnessed of him, Thou art a priest forever
    after the order of Melchisedec" (Heb. vii. 11-17).


Each dispensation has had its priesthood. Each has had its priests and
its high priests. Each has had its priests, its altars and its
sacrifices peculiar to itself. Only priests in any age could worship
God; and acceptable worship must ever be in accordance with the law of
the priesthood.

During the patriarchal age the father of the family was priest. He
offered sacrifice for the family. The grandfather, great grandfather,
etc., was high priest over his posterity for all the generations
descending from him while he lived. Adam was high priest of the whole
race during his life. Then the high priesthood descended to each of his
sons for the posterity of each. So Noah was high priest of all the
post-diluvian world during his life. Then it descended to each of his
sons. Each son was high priest of his branch of the family, in all its
generations, during his life. In that age, therefore, as in this, there
was a universal priesthood. The priesthood of the Christian
dispensation is, in a certain sense, modeled after the patriarchal and
in contrast with the Jewish. It is after the order of Melchisedec, and
not after that of Aaron. Melchisedec was high priest of that division
of the human family to which Abraham belonged, and this distinguished
patriarch paid tithes to him. If we do not misinterpret the law of the
priesthood of that age, this could have been none other than Shem. Shem
was then living, and Noah was dead; and Abraham belonged to Shem's
posterity. Hence no one else could be high priest while Shem lived.
Many have thought that because it is said he was "without father,
without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor
end of life," that he could not be a man. But they fail to observe that
he was without these things _in the Aaronic priesthood_. For it is said
that he had a genealogy, but that it was not in the priestly family.
"And they indeed of the sons of Levi that receive the priest's office
have commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law,
that is, of their brethren, though these have come out of the loins of
Abraham; but he whose genealogy is not counted from them hath taken
tithes of Abraham." Shem had neither father nor mother, nor beginning
of days, nor end of life, in the sense that the Aaronic priests had
them; and this is all that is affirmed of Melchisedec.

When God called His people out of Egyptian bondage, and gave them the
law, He gave them a new priesthood. The priests were now all confined
to the tribe of Levi and the family of Aaron. Men could no longer build
their own altars and offer their own sacrifices. On the contrary, they
had all to bring their offering to the priests appointed of the family
of Aaron, and have them make the offering. With a change of the
priesthood came a change of the law. "For," says Paul, "the priesthood
being changed, there is made of necessity a change also in the law."
The law thus changed was the law of worship through the priesthood. And
as it was through this worship that pardon was obtained, the change of
priesthood changed the law of pardon. Hence the law of pardon under
each priesthood has been different from that under either of the
others. After the establishment of the Aaronic priesthood, a descendant
of Jacob could no longer build his altar and offer his sacrifice just
as he had done before the change. And now a priest under the Christian
dispensation can not offer acceptable worship as did either the Jew or
the patriarch. The worship that once brought to one the divine blessing
would now bring upon him a curse. How strange it is, then, that the
denominational world in large measure go back to a different priesthood
for their ideas of religion and salvation.

Under the law the kings and the priests were of two distinct tribes.
These were of the tribe of Levi; those of the tribe of Judah. Hence it
is written: "The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a law-giver
from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the
gathering of the people be." Christ was of the tribe of Judah; hence
He, like Melchisedec, is both priest and king. He could not be a priest
of the Aaronic order, for he was of a different tribe--a tribe of which
Moses spoke nothing concerning the priesthood. Hence all the efforts to
make Him a priest of that kind are refuted by that simple fact. Many
insist that Christ was inducted into His priestly office at His
baptism, and many vain speculations are based thereon. But this can not
be. Christ was not a priest while He was on the earth, says Paul in
these words: "Now, if he were on earth he would not be a priest at all,
seeing there are those who offer the gifts according to the law" (Heb.
viii. 4). He could not be a priest on earth, because the Aaronic
priesthood was then in force, and He was not of the Aaronic family.
Since He could not be a priest while on earth, it is folly to talk of
His becoming a priest at His baptism. He could not become a priest till
the law of the priesthood was changed, and that was not changed till
after His death. The Aaronic priesthood was in full force till His
death. He was made high priest, not by the legal ritual, but by the
oath of God; and this oath was "_after the law_," not while it was in
force. The law continued till His death, hence it was after His death
that He was made high priest by the oath of God. He was a sacrifice
when He died, not a priest. He could not be priest and sacrifice at the
same time. After His ascension He, as high priest, made atonement with
His own blood which He shed as a sacrifice for the sins of the world.
Hence a number of facts show the utter folly of claiming that He was a
priest among men.

It is through Christ as high priest that we worship God. We can worship
acceptably in no other way. There are no other means of access to the
Father. Only through and by the priesthood can God be worshiped. Hence
the worshiper must become a priest, and then worship through Christ as
high priest. All pretensions to approach God in worship, without
recognizing Christ as our high priest and mediator, is only an
exhibition of an infidel farce. It is an insult to God, because a
rejection of His Son. Hence those who do not accept Christ as their
high priest cut themselves off from access to the Father. Christ
Himself says, "No man cometh unto the Father but by me."

Paul makes it a matter of rejoicing that we have a great high priest
who can be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; one that has
been tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin. Such a high
priest knows how to sympathize with us, and to make for us all just
excuses.

The earthly high priest went once a year, on the great day of
atonement, into the most holy place, with the blood of others, to make
atonement for the sins of Israel; but Christ, as the high priest of the
good things to come, has entered the holy place on high, with His own
blood, to make atonement for the sins of the whole world. The offerings
made by the priests under the law pertained only to the cleansing of
the flesh; but the blood offered by our high priest "cleanses the
conscience from dead works to serve the living God."



NEW TESTAMENT VIEWS OF CHRIST.

XII.--CHRIST OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.

    "But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who was made unto us wisdom
    from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption:
    that, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory
    in the Lord" (I. Cor. i. 30, 31).


In this language Paul affirms that Christ is our righteousness. This is
a momentous thought. It goes to the heart of the scheme of redemption.
How is Christ our righteousness? What does Paul mean by the
affirmation? The very life of Christianity is involved in the answer.
By one's answer we know just where to place him in regard to the vital
principles of Christianity.

That one must be righteous in order to be prepared for heaven, must be
conceded by those who accept the Bible as authority. "Know ye not that
the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God." And this must be
a positive, not simply a relative, righteousness. Men may be
comparatively righteous, and yet be wholly unprepared for the presence
of God. The righteousness required in order to a home in heaven is
absolute. All unrighteousness is sin, and one must be perfectly free
from sin to be accepted in the Beloved. No sin can enter heaven. One
can not stand in the presence of God, accepted through the
righteousness of Christ, with the least taint of sin upon his soul.
Hence perfect righteousness is required. One must be righteous even as
Christ Himself is righteous. Knowing this to be true, and knowing our
own imperfections and shortcomings, even in our best estate, it is no
wonder that the way is described as narrow. One can not but see at a
glance his utter hopelessness if he has to depend on himself. If Christ
has made any provision by which this righteousness can be attained then
one can not but appreciate what Christ has done for him and his
absolute dependence on Him for salvation.

Two distinct kinds of righteousness are clearly defined in the Word of
God. They are in striking contrast. One is approved; the other
condemned. One is of God; the other of men. One is of faith; the other
of law.

God's righteousness is not only a divine, holy principle of justice and
mercy, but is also a system or plan of salvation. When Jesus applied to
John for baptism, John declined. He was preaching the "baptism of
repentance for the remission of sins." He also required a confession of
their sins. They were baptized of him in Jordan, "confessing their
sins." While he did not know Jesus to be the Christ, he knew Him as his
kinsman, and he knew enough of the purity and sinlessness of His life
to think that He should not confess His sins to be baptized for their
remission. Besides he doubtless hoped that Jesus would be the favored
one on whom he was to see the Holy Spirit descending and abiding upon
Him. He, therefore, felt himself unworthy to baptize his cousin Jesus.
But Jesus said, "Suffer it now, for thus it becometh us to fulfill all
righteousness." No matter what John's personal feelings were, or the
sinlessness and purity of Jesus, it became the duty of one as the
administrator and the other as the subject to observe this divine
appointment. Had their idea been that baptism was to be administered to
those free from sin, such an objection could never have been raised.
Here the word "righteousness" evidently refers to God's appointments in
the divine economy--the plan of salvation.

When Peter went to the house of Cornelius to break the bread of life to
the Gentiles, he said: "I now perceive that God is no respecter of
persons, but in every nation he that feareth God and worketh
righteousness is accepted of him." Here "righteousness" is something to
be "worked." It is, therefore, something to be done. In it men are
active. It is not, therefore, a quality in God or man, but something
that enlists the activities of men. It is a plan by the observance of
which men are accepted of God.

Speaking of his own brethren according to the flesh, Paul says:
"Brethren, my heart's desire and supplication to God is for them, that
they may be saved. For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for
God, but not according to knowledge. For being ignorant of God's
righteousness, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit
themselves to the righteousness of God" (Rom. x. 1-3). Here the
righteousness of God is contrasted with that of the unbelieving Jews.
They rejected God's, and set up one of their own. They did not submit
to God's righteousness. Here it is clearly a religious system, a plan
of salvation. They rejected God's plan and tried to establish one of
their own. In this they were zealous, but it was a misguided zeal.

In harmony with this idea of righteousness we understand the expression
in the first chapter of this epistle: "For I am not ashamed of the
gospel: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that
believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is
revealed a righteousness of God by faith unto faith: as it is written,
But the righteous shall live by faith." Here we understand God's
righteousness to be God's plan of saving or justifying men by faith;
the plan to which the Jews would not submit in the tenth chapter.
Hence, in the gospel, God's system of justification by faith is
revealed in order to faith. Faith comes by hearing the word of God. In
the gospel God's plan of saving men by faith in Christ is revealed, and
this is the only place in which it is revealed. Consequently the truth
herein revealed produces faith. This results in the acceptance of God's
plan of salvation.

We have "the faith" as a system of salvation through Christ, and faith
as a personal state of the mind and heart. So, also, have we
righteousness as a plan of salvation which we accept from God, and
righteousness as a personal quality--a state of personal freedom from
sin. And the one leads to the other, as a revelation of "the faith"
produces personal faith.

This leads us to consider how we obtain that perfect righteousness,
without which we can not enjoy the blissful presence of God.

Paul's teaching in regard to the personal righteousness of the saints,
makes salvation by a mere reformation of life, an impossibility. The
importance of this fact can not be over-estimated. Many people seem to
think that a reformation in regard to moral conduct, is all that is
necessary to prepare to meet God. If they can only break off their
sinful practices, and practice morality, they think they have done all
that is really essential. In this there are two fatal mistakes. First,
no reformation is perfect. The best of men whose lives have been
moulded into the divine image, and are most conformed to the divine
nature, have their imperfections. The ripest saint upon the earth feels
that if his salvation depended on his perfect sinlessness in conduct
for the rest of life, the chances of heaven would at once become dark
and hopeless. The cheerfulness and bright assurance of the child of God
are not because he hopes to live a perfect life, but because his
imperfections will be taken away in Christ. And second, the most
perfect reformation would avail nothing. Could one so reform his life
as to never sin again, and practice virtue in place of the former vice,
it would fall far short of securing the end. However free from sin one
may live in the future, the sins of the past are upon him. These will
forever condemn him, unless they are removed. Our ceasing to sin will
not take away the old ones. The fact that a man refuses to contract any
more debts, will not pay a dollar of his old ones. So no amount of
reformation will make amends for the past. Our past sins must be taken
away, else they will condemn us in the day of eternity. We can not
remove them ourselves; we can not atone for our own sins. Here we are
utterly helpless. To what source, then, shall we go? Christ is the only
refuge. He alone can take away our sins; His blood alone can cleanse
from sin. "If we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have
fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ, his Son,
cleanseth us from all sin." This is the "fountain opened in the house
of David for all manner of sin and uncleanness." "Though your sins be
as scarlet, he will make them white as wool." "He will put them as far
from us as the east is from the west, and remember them against us no
more forever." Thus it is that Christ is our righteousness. We are
righteous because He has made us such. He makes us such by taking away
our sins. When our sins are pardoned, we are as free from sin as if we
had never sinned at all. Hence as regards the guilt of sin, we are
perfect. We are made perfect in righteousness because Christ removes
all unrighteousness. We are, therefore, absolutely dependent on Him
for salvation. We have no righteousness of our own. Our robes of
self-righteousness are but filthy tatters in His sight. Those clothed
in the righteousness of Christ, that is, the righteousness which Christ
gives them, shall have right to the tree of life, and shall enter
through the gates into the eternal city. Their right is not one of
merit, but one that Christ has given. He is our righteousness, and
apart from Him none is possibly attainable.

Since we have to be perfectly righteous in order to be saved, and since
this is impossible on our part, when relying on ourselves, but is
obtained only by being pardoned through Christ, it follows that all
boasting is cut off. No man has occasion to glory except in the cross
of Christ. Hence the apostle concludes his argument by saying: "He that
glorieth let him glory in the Lord." It also follows that he who would
obtain personal righteousness, must submit to the "righteousness of
God"--God's plan of salvation. Through the one "righteousness," is the
other righteousness obtained.





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