Jan 27, 2009

Howell a Real "Old Baptist"

From "The Baptist" for the year 1838 Vol. IV

Dr. Howell wrote in the Jan. issue:

'The Baptist will contiue to advocate the principles it has heretofore avowed and maintained. What they are, I need not, at this late period, enumerate. They have been before you for the three years last past. I have not changed my ground in any particular. My position was taken, deliberately, sixteen years ago, after protracted investigation, and earnest prayer to God for direction. It cannot be expected, therefore, that I shall be blown about, as some others, by every wind of doctrine. I have been, from the beginning, still am, and ever expect to remain, a Baptist of the "Old School." I do not mean, by this, that I believe in the mummeries gotten up within the last twenty years, mainly by the agency of the noted Parker of "two seed memory, and dubbed, for effect, with this name, now so rife in Tennessee. No--far from it. The Parkerism, Campbellism, Mormonism, anti-effortism, antinomianism, and every other similar fantasy, which has originated, or been maintained, by wrong-headed enthusiasts, in Tennessee, or elsewhere, whether through ignorance, from motives of interest or ambition, or because their imagination has gotten the better their judgment, and their religion, I totally repudiate. I cannot consent to follow any of these fables, however cunningly devised." (Page 2)

"A few years ago the Tennessee Church was like the Dead Sea, still and silent. Only here and there a ripple was to be seen. No tempest lashed its billows, but neither did it bear upon its bosom a single bark freighted with the rich treasure of the Gospel to bless the poor and the destitute. But the scene is now changed. We have renewed proof that where the true Gospel is preached and ignorance and bigoty which drive men into anti-effortism, fly before it like the shadows of night before the rising sun. We have reason for profoundest gratitude to God for the demonstration that truth will prevail, where there are honest hearts, in despite of all the demagogueism in the Church and out of it." (Page 3)

"Our labors, however, have been arduous. Every inch of ground we have gained has been bitterly disputed by numerous brethren in the opposition. They have excited themselves with a zeal worthy of a better cause. Their watchword every where is disorganization. They have with immense pains, succeeded in dividing some of our Churches and Associations; but it is a remarkable fact, and deserves particular attention, as evincive of the approbation of God, that in almost every place where the agitators have broken off and set up for themselves, the Lord has poured out, instantly, upon the neighborhoods, the spirit of revival, and added to the Churches they left nearly twenty young converts for every one of the receding antinomians. This fact has been peculiarly prominent in Wilson and Smith counties. In these counties and in several other places in our State, revivals are now prevailing, and wherever they spread they burn up antieffortism, root and branch. Some Churches and Associations are still kept in inaction and darkness, but this state of things cannot long continue." (Page 4)

See here

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