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Full text of "Helps to the study of Presbyterianism; or, An unsophisticated exposition of Calvinism, with Hopkinsian modifications and policy, with a view to a more easy interpretation of the same. To which is added a brief account of the life and travels of the author; interspersed with anecdotes"

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BX 9180 .B7 1834 

Brownlow, William Gannaway, 




1805-1877. 




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TO THE 

3^)y^n(.J|g%|<.. OP PRESBYTERIANISM 

I 

OR, 

A SOPHISTICATED EXPOSITION OF- CALVINISM, WITH 
HOPKINSIAN MODIFICATIONS AND>POLICY,.WITH 
A VIEW TO. A MORE EASY INTERPRE- 
TATION OF THE SAME. 

TO WHICH IS ADDED 

K brief account of the Ifife and Travels of the Author;; 

INTERSPERSED WITH ANECDOTES. 

BY WILLIAM G/jiR«»;tVXLOW , 

fcr ihtrt is not?ung covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid. thnf shall noi 
be made known Chri st. 

' KNOXVILLE, T. 

'■> F. S. HEISKELL, PRINTER; 






Ik 



Entered, according to act of Congress, in the year 1834, 
By William G. Browkiow, 

in the Clerk's Office of the Eastern District of TeiQmessee. 






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DEDICATIOIV* 

TO THE 



Reverend Sir; 

My personal acquaintance with you, and certain knowledge of 
your liigh standing- among" the Methodist Societies, both in Europe and 
America, would alone have inchned me to solicit for this work, the honor 
of your name and patronag-e. But, Sir, I must further confess, the pe- 
culiar satisfaction which I feel, in offering it as a tribute and a public ac- 
knowledgment of my admiration for a man, who, as I beheve, more diau 
any other, has enriched, by his labors, the moral and theological hterature 
of America. Sir, your good heart, clear and penetrating mind, sound 
and strong judgment, calmness of temper for deliberation, invincible 
firmness and perseverance m what you undertake, incorruptible integritv 
and unvarying orthodoxy; connected, at the same time, with that self- 
distrust peculiar to your innate modesty, the constant attendant of pre- 
eminent virtue, have won for you the affections of manv, and entitled 
you to the respect of ail. 

In this work, which, as a tribute of respect, I now dedicate to you, I 
liave instituted the most strict and impartial enquiry into the origin,' prin- 
ciples, tendency, and designs, of the National Societies. I have long 
cherished a desire to see a work of this kind brought forward in this 
country ,^ and I am exceedingly gratified that, in compliance with the re- 
quest ot many of my intimate friends, I have carried through this under- 
tiiking. This work supplies a want which I have often painfully felt, and 
.'iffords a manual whicli I should gladly see placed in the hands' of everv 
American citizen. I know of none which, in all resnects, would supplV 
!ts place. Therefore, Sir, you mav, most strongly recommend this little 
unpretending volume to the attention of every lover of hbertv, and more 
particularly, of our own country. It will induce them, I am 'sure, to ex- 
amine more closely than they have been accustomed to do, the designs of 
the Calvinistic Sections of the Church, and such examination must prove 
interesting to them; for I have introduced them to movements and meas- 
ures which, in a good degree, have hitherto been hidden from too manv. 
lathe prosecution of this arduous and hitherto almost unattempted 
work, in this form, I have derived greater aid from your views and arcrn- 
inents, as exhibited in the different periodicals you have so ably edited, 
tor the last eight or ten years, than I have been able to find besides, in the 
whole range of our existant editor or authorship. With this powerful 
aid, I commenced the arduous and highly responsible task, to whichi 1 
verily believe, I have been, in the providence of God, especially called. 
Jo imagine that I have completed this task, would be to forget at oner, 
that, like yourself, I am but a man, and therefore liable to make a failure 
Although I do not enjoy the satisfaction of knoiuing that I have travers. 



iv DEDICATION. 

cd t!ie whole < 'length and breadth" of the different subjects on which I 
have written; yet, it is a source of comfort to me, to be assured that, 1 
have nevertheless cast so much light on each subject as to enable him 
who "runs," to both « 'read and understand." How the following work 
may be received, I pretend not to predict. My first wish concerning it 
is, that it may do good to any: my second desire, that it may assist, what 
it has ever been my earnest wish to promote, the cause of truifc and 
rigliteouiness. And that you, Reverend Sir, may long continue, b^ouv 
/e:il, and talents, and lofty erudition, to sustain the honors, and to pro- 
3note the vital good of the Christian cause in general, and that of Metho- 
disiri in particular, in these United States, is the sincere desire and fer- 
•^-ent prayer of, 

Reverend and dear Sir, 
Your most obliged. 

And obedient servant, 

WILLIAM G. BROWNLOW. 



PREFACE 



That a book must not appear without a Preface, is one amon^* 
the many estabHshed customs of the world:— therefore, I wil- 
hnsrly submit to this customary ceremony. I am aware that 
Solomon has said, that, in ''making many books there is no end,' 
that is to say, of the weariness of the flesh, both to the Avriter 
and reader; yet, notwithstanding this, and even the great num- 
ber of books which have been written, and the still increasing 
spread of the book mania, I must be permitted to furnish the 
Avorld's library with an additional volume. 

2. That the American people are on the eve of an eventful pe- 
riod, cannot be doubted, I think, by any one who can discern 
the "signs of the times." If ever a crisis did exist in the affairs 
of this Nation, since its independence was first achieved, which 
called upon the people to watch with sleepless vigilance over 
their liberties, that crisis may be dated in the year of our Lord 

O'E THOOSA>^D EIGHT HUNDRED AND THIRTY-FOUP... For I boldly SUy, 

that there never was the time known, since the dark days of the 
revolution, when the liberties of our country w^ere so much en- 
dangered, as at the present. The good people of the United 
JStates, having had full evidence of the excellency of their pres- 
ent Constitution, which guarantees cmVand religious liberties to 
every class of our citizens, justly abhor the idea of giving to any 
one of the denominations of christians, that exists among us, a 
preference above the rest. The right of VForshipping God ac- 
cording to the dictates of conscience, is a right that is wisely 
guaranteed and secured to every individual within the confines 
of this great commonwealth, by our excellent constitution. It 
recognizes no sect — it restrains and punishes persecution, when 
it assumes to itself the semblance of violence: — but it cannot cast 
out the demons of prejudice and misrepresentation. Under our 
Constitution, the dignified preacher of every persuasion pursues 
the course which conscience points out to him, in edifying his 
flock, without the fear of molestation, or with no other interrup- 
tion than that which occasionally arises from the attempts of 
underling clerical scavengers to cast the mud of misrepresen- 
tation in his way. That the American people should be jealous 
of their rights, in this particular, is by no means a matter of as- 
tonishment. That incipient eflbrts have been made, and are 



vl PREFACE. 

still making-, to grasp at political power and pre-eminence, and 
that many ambitious hearts still palpitate from a strong desire to 
become the "favored few,*' in order that they may enjoy the fruit* 
of political superiority, cannot be denied. It is a truth too well 
known, to require proof, that, Christianity iiever did flourish, and 
it neye/- ti'i7/ flourish under an arbitrary form of government, es- 
pecially where the Church is wedded to the State by means of a 
RELIGIOUS ESTABLISHMENT. In all such cases, (and there have been 
many.) as the history of the Church and of the world will prove, 
Christianity has become a poor, miserable, forlorn, degraded 
superstition, but little better than Paganism itself. In looking 
over the history of past times, we see religious incendiaries the 
most dangerous and formidable characters on record — fanning 
the flames of dissention—bursting the bands of national alliance; 
drenching communities in blood; and hurling devastation and 
ruin amongst unoffending and devoted victims. In these two 
w^ords — CIVIL and religious— are contained all the relations which 
man hold with man, and man with his God. And knowing, as 
"we do, that both civil and religious society are prone to slum- 
ber over their rights, and suffer them to be taken away, we can- 
not insist too strongly nor yet too frequently, upon the necessity 
of watchfulness on this momentous subject. Therefore, if real 
danger is to be apprehended from the movements of any one 
sect, it is but proper and right, that the alarm should be sounded 
in season, that the ambitious aspirants for civil povi^er, may be 
frustrated in their unhallowed, diabolical, and unlawful designs, 
and be held up to the reproach and indignation of every lover 
of freedom. That the Presbyterian, Hopkinsian, and Congre- 
gational Calvinists, have designs of this nature, can no longer 
be doubted by the most superficial observer of passing events, 
^"^hen, however, I name Presbyterians, Hopkinsians, or Con- 
gregationalists, in the following pages, in referrence to any great 
scheme, or political designs, I use the names as synonymous. For 
really, when the Congregational ministers come to the south or 
w^est, they frequently become pastors of Presbyterian churches; 
so that, for all important purposes, they are essentially Preshytc- 
Hans. Indeed, Presbyterians, Hopkinsians, Congregationalists, 
Dutch Reformed, Associate Reformed, and Scotch Presbyteri- 
ans, are radically and strictly one in doctrines, in ordination, 
and to a great extent, in church discipline likewise. And I do 
not thus allude to these people, with a view to sound an unneces- 
sary alarm in this land, where I think it hardly probable, how- 
ever much it may be desired or sought dfter, for any one sect to 
gain such a predominant influence as to oppress or violently per- 



PREFACE. vii 

secute another. In the event of such a catastrophe however, I 
for one, should be unwillingf to trust myself in the hands of any 
such predominant sect, as history abundantly confirms the truth 
of the remark, that give men the power, and they vv'ill soon per- 
suade themselves that it is 'doing" God service" to persecute 
their neighbors, even for difference in religious belief. There is 
indeed no bigotry so intolerable as religious bigotry, nor any 
hatred so unrelenting as religious hatred. Let the melancholy 
history of the church confirm the truth of this remark. On this 
account the venerable patriots of the Revolution, who founded 
this republic, instructed from the pages of history, excluded, by 
the constitution which binds us together, and which is the su- 
preme few of the land, the possibility, so long as that instrument 
shall be held sacred, of any sectarian preference or religious es- 
tablishment. The whole frame of our civil society, therefore 
must be altered, and an entire new order of things established 
before intolerance can be introduced into our civil code, or reli- 
gious persecution become legalized. This, however, can be ef- 
fected upon Dr. Ely^s plan, which I exhibit in the following 
pages. At present, therefore, we ask not for toleration, because 
there is no power to tolerate; nor do we fear persecution, for 
there is no power to persecute. No, verily, if there be a spot in 
the wide world where liberty, both civil and religious, are en- 
joyed, it is in America! If there be any one portion of the 
whole earth, where the human mind, unfettered by tyrannical in- 
fluence, may rise to the summit of moral and intellectual grand- 
eur, it is North America! Yes, the tree of liberty has been 
planted in America — watered, enriched, and pruned by salutary 
laws; it has extended its branches north and south over the 
western hemisphere, to the great annoyance of tyrants; they 
have overhung the Atlantic; and are now rapidly spreading 
themselves all over Europe. The despot of France lets fall the 
sceptre from his palsied grasp, and hides himself in what he 
may consider the last retreat, or strongest hold of European 
oppression. The Belgians and Poles having caught the spirit, 
have burst their bands, and hurled the tyrants from thrones of 
fancied security; and I fondly hope the time will come, and is 
fast approaching, when all the nations of the earth will bask be- 
neath its genial influence; and when the withering breath of the 
hireling slave or minion of power will no longer nip the buds of 
liberty. I fondly hope the time will soon come, when it may be 
said of every nation, as it ie justly said of ours, **thi8 is the land 
of the free and the home of the brave." And in the meantime, 



vUl PREFACE. 

may the goddess of liberty never take a final flight from Amer- 
ica! 

3. It has been said by the excellent Bishop Home, that, "in 
times when erroneous and noxious tenets are diffused, all men 
should embrace some opportunity to bear their testimony 
against them." It will be allowed by every dispassionate ob- 
server, that if "erroneous and noxious tenets" were ever diffus- 
ed among men in any age, they are eminently so at the present. 
And let those who are accustomed to rail out against controver- 
sy and doctrinal discussions, but consider this, that, had it not 
been for controversy^ Romish Priests would now be feeding us 
with Latin nmsses and a wafer god! In the controversies of the 
last eight years, I have felt a deep interest, and with their results 
in most instances, I have been greatly delighted. Perhaps this 
is owing to the fact, that I always believed Methodism to be the 
most consistent and most scriptural system in the world, and hav- 
ing imbibed these sentiments in very early life, I was always glad 
when its enemies were defeated and its excellencies brought to 
view. I have occasionally heard respectable members of even 
the Methodist Church say, that there was too much of contro- 
versy in our country, and that it was high time these wars were 
brought to an end. I must confess, however, that my views of 
this subject are quite different; for it is very evident that the 
prophets of old, and Christ and his apostles were always, in 
some way or other, combatting the errors of their day. So also 
of the Fathers, as they are called — they were men of war.— 
But how was it with the Church of Rome when there were 
none to controvert her dogmas'? How w^as it with the Church 
of England before the days of John Wesley? And how was it 
in the New England States before Methodism found its way 
there? Were not the shepherds in each case living at their ease 
in ceiled houses, while the true temple of God was lying in ru- 
ins? Were they not living on the fat of the land and on the 
fleece, instead of caring for the flock? Were they not lording 
it over God's heritage? — and were they not making the people 
'hewers of wood and drawers of water" for them? At a pro- 
tracted meeting in New England, in 1832, it was remarked by a 
Calvinistic minister, "Brethren, we must have a revival! Time 
was when our ministers could live without revivals. Their sal- 
J^ry was sure whether they had revivals in their congregations 
or not; but it is not so now!" This gentleman alluded to the 
fe/Me Za«;s of Massachusetts and Connecticut, which laws made 
ample provisions for the wants of this order of clergymen! 

4. In the following pages I have brought to view the nature, 



PREFACE. ix 

tendency, and obvious design of the JYational Societies, which to 
some may appear of very subordinate importance, but, in fact, 
of very great magnitude, if we view all their bearings and con- 
sequences. And in this work, the reader will at once possess 
himself of a valuable mine of information on the subject of the 
Benevolent Societies of the day, and be naturally assisted in ac- 
quiring that accurate perception, which will be his safest guide 
in selecting charitable objects, upon which to bestow his goods.— 
But so far from being opposed to Sunday Schools , Bible, Tract, 
and Missionary Societies, and other schemes for the promotion 
of religion, or the amelioration of the condition of my fellow- 
beings, I declare myself to be their avowed friend and supporter, 
I am opposed to American Societies, because, as Dr. Miller of 
Princeton, N. J. justly says, they are "irrespo>'sible National 
Societies." There is the American Bible Society, American 
Tract Society, American Sunday School Society, American 
Foreign Missionary Society, American Home Missionary Soci- 
ety, American Education Society, American Peace Society, 
American Seamen's Friend Society, American Mite Society, 
American Discipline Society, American Jew Society, &c. &c. 
All these are but so many tributaries pouring into the NATION- 
AL AMAZON, which, if not destroyed in some way, will» 
sooner or later, like Noah's flood, inundate this virgin hemis- 
phere, and destroy our peace and happiness forever. This cen- 
tral fountain of sectarian intelligence, is already gushing its 
waves of unholy impulse in equal measure to the extremities of 
this continent. These societies have in sacerdotal hands, con- 
stituted a kind of mercenary screw^, by means of which, more 
money has been wrenched out of the pockets and purses of the 
American people, than perhaps all the African slave trade ever 
has accumulated! The latter dealt in human bones and blood 
and sinews: the others trade in human souls! The lust of gold 
was the entire object of the one: gold and power are the objects 
of the others! These societies are the bulwarks of Presbyteri- 
an religion, that is to say, the bulwarks of their meat and bread; 
the bulwarks of their young ministers living without labm' ov 
talents to preach, on the earnings of the more meritorious part 
of the community. And the reason why these young men, 
huz and fly about so much like hornets, when any thing is said 
against these societies is, they know very well, that if these in- 
stitutions are put down, they will be left in a condition similar 
to that of the buckle-makers when shoe-strings came in vogue, 
viz, out of business! For like the missionaries sent to labor 
among the German nations, Bavarians, Saxons, &c. in the 



X PREFACE. 

eighth century, they are more zealous in exacting tithes and ex- 
tending their authority, than in propagating the sublime truths 
and precepts of the gospel. Or like Charlemagne's zeal for the 
conversion of the Huns, Frieslanders, and Saxons, they are 
more animated by the suggestion of ambition, than by a princi- 
ple of true pieiy; and like him, their main object in these benev- 
olent exploits is, to subdue the nations under their dominion, 
and to tame them to the'w national yoke 

5. It isgenerally known, and .is generally disapproved of too, 
that the Presbyterian clergy, in order to effect certain important 
purposes, and at the same time degrade and undervalue the min- 
isters of every other denomination, represent the whole Wes- 
tern country, as being in a state of absolute darkness, without a 
single token or ciue to a better state, and its inhabitants as wor- 
shipping an "unknown'' or anonymous God! That there is a 
measure of light among the people of the "Great West," they 
indeed allow; but like the lurid gleam of a volcano, it is not alight 
which guides, but which bewilders and terrifies them. Yes, by 
these men, the veil of oblivion is spread over the better half of 
the American continent, of which the appalling picture, drawn 
by the pen of inspiration in the hand of St. Paul, in the first 
chapter of his Epistle to the Uomans, revolting and humiliating 
as it is, affords but too faithful a portraiture! Indeed, what the 
apostle there says of certain dignified Grecian philosophers, 
these men have said of the people of the west: — "Professing 
themselves to be wise, they became fools; and changed the glo- 
ry of the incorruptible God into an image made like to corrupti- 
ble man, and to birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things!" 
And even when, by means of the pious instructions of these 
would-be dictators, it might be said of us, that v^^e "knew God," 
still we "glorified him not as God, neither were thankful, but be- 
came vain in our imagination?:," and our "foolish hearts were 
darkened;" while w^e have even "changed the truth of God into 
a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the 
Creator, who is blessed forever!" The author of this work, i 
therefore, has endeavored to disabuse his brethren and country, 
as well as testify against every encroachment upon the kingdom 
of Christ, audits laws and ordinances. But I should be blintl 
indeed, to every thing like understanding, not to be aware, that, 
in olfering this volume to the public, I am exposing myself^ little 
and unknown as I am, to much obloquy. This, however, is 
with me, a matter of but little consequence. My motives, 1 
knovj, ave of the purest kind; and hence, lam willing that the 



PREFACE. XX 

breath of Calvinian malice should, like the wind, "blow where 
itiisteth," and I shall not pause to enquire "whence itcomeih or 
whither it goeth." My object, then, in furnishing the public with 
this volume, is, as will appear from its pages, to supply what 
has long been a desideratum in the department of religious news; 
and I trust, its circulation among my fellow-citizens, w^ill be as 
extensive as its importance deserves. The information w^hich 
it contains, I think, is admirably condensed; while very little 
extraneous matter has been inserted. On the whole, it Is evi- 
dent that such a work, fair in its statements, judicious in its selec- 
tions, properly comprehensive in its scope, and every way bold 
and independent in its aspect, is called for, in this age so pregnant 
w^ith events. As an individual, I do not profess to be free from 
all prejudice of education, and from all attachment\to creeds, 
confessions, disciplines, &;c. in such a degree as to make it cer- 
tain that my views may not sometimes be greatly affected by 
them. I profess to be a sectarian without bigotry, adhering 
strictly to all the doctrines and usages of the Church to which 
1 belong; yet looking upon every good man as my brother, and 
regarding him as such, abstract from any particle of sectarian 
bias. Those who find fault with the doctrines and usages of my 
church, I am disposed, in obedience to a divine mjunction, to 
rehuke shai-ply. And indeed, no one is free from this preposses- 
sion; though some who have identified themselves with a par- 
ticular sect, have made, and continue to make pretensions of this 
kind. Nothing is more sickening to me, than to hear a man, or 
a sect of people boasting of their *' Catholic spirit," or friendly 
feelings towards all others. The word Cathoiic, if I understand 
it, is compounded of two Greek words that signify universal; and 
to talk about a particular universal sect is absurd — grossly ab- 
surd. The inspired penmen alone have succeeded in trampling 
sectarian bias entirely under foot. That a man is not conscious 
of being swayed by it, is no proof that it does not exert a power- 
ful influence over him; since it is its nature to blind the eyes of 
himwhose judgment it thus warps. When, therefore, I speak 
in the indicative mood; and say that this or that means thus and 
so, the reader will not understand me to intend any thing mo re 
than that th'ks is true as I believe. 

6. A work of this kind, should indeed, emanate from a mind, 
rich in its acquaintance with the vast and ever-accumUlating 
storesof knowledge, which criticism, history, and theology in- 



xii PREFACE. 

close in their wide domains. The author of this work, howev- 
er, has never boasted of his genius, of his diligence, of his deep 
theological research, nor yet, of his critical philological know- 
ledge! Besides this, the work herewith submitted, is not for the 
instruction of divines, lexicographers, critics, commentators, 
philosophers and travellers, of all ages and nations; but for the 
common people of these United States. I have been more con- 
cerned about the matter than about the manner, about ivhat I pub- 
lished than about the style in which it should appear, and conse- 
quently, my pen has moved in my fingers with very little regard 
to elegancies. Again, though a lover of order, variety, and of 
grandeur myself) yet, my style is rugged, inharmonious, irregu- 
lar, incoherent, and so enfeebled by contraction, that I have des- 
spaired of ever carrying my readers along with that breathless 
impetuosity, so pecular to the writing of a Wesley, a Fletcher, 
a Clark, a Baxter, a Watson, or a Bangs. Poor me! Had my 
style in former days, been more diversified; or had I in the gen- 
eral, abounded more in metaphysics and refinements; or had I 
lurked behind the battlements and under the forms of logic and 
metaphysics; instead of dealing in the most plain terms, I should 
now have fewer enemies. But alas! my exuberence and re- 
dundancy of language, may be justly considered one, among 
nhe many other ivinning ways I have to make folks hate me! But 
when I write, preach, or converse, I make it a point to call no 
man master, and to bow the knee to no system as such; nor do I 
seek the applause or dread the frowns of any. While, then, I 
meet, perhaps with the approbation of some, I must of course 
expect the vehement dissent and bitter railings of others. I 
have made up my mind, therefore, to bear with all this, and to 
bear with it patiently and firmly; or else it would have been bet- 
ter for me in the end, never to have published. 

7. In a work of this kind, no one will expect to find the differ- 
ent articles to be cwifiVe/s' original; and in this volume, they are 
not all so in whole, though they all are in part. , Some, then, of the 
following chapters are sinc% original compositions; others are 
copied and abridged from the most approved and authentic pe- 
riodicals of the day, and the whole greatly improved and en- 
larged by the author. With regard to the sources cf informa- 
tion, which I have explored, I acknowledge myself chiefiy in- 
debted to the Christian Advocate and Journal, the Methodist 
Magazine and Quarterly Review, the Holston Messenger, and 



"^^ PREFACE. 



xin 



the Gospel Herald. Also, I have constantly had before me, while 
writing, the various Reports, Addresses, Constitutions, &c. of 
the Societies whose principles are herein investigated; and like- 
wise, the standard tcritings of those Churches, whose doctrines 
are herein brought to view. And to accomplish this work, in 
the midst of so many materials, and of my other pressing and 
official engagements, in so short a time as I have done, has beesi 
to me, no easy task. The Calvinian doctrines herein opposed, 
have been the grand arena, if I may so express myself, on 
which theological combatants have been contending, ever since 
the third century, and perhaps from an earlier period. 

I despise the cruelty of the Calvinian system, which, to hush 
the alarms of guilty man, w^ould rob the Deity of his perfections, 
and stamp a degrading mockery upon his lawsl Calvinism, as 
Dr. Fisk of New England very justly remai'ks, assumes a thous- 
and different appearances, equally dangerous and destructive 
in all its diversified transformations. But time would fail me to 
tell of the obscurities into which the system runs, but which it is 
unable to dissipate — of its unresolved doubts — of the mysteries 
through which it vainly tries to grope its uncertain way— of its 
%veary and fruitless efforts — of its unutterable longings — and, of 
its soul-shivering dogmas. Calvinism engenders a thousand 
evil habits which, like the imps of sin in Milton, "Yelp all around 
it!" But more of this in the sequel. 

8. Once more: — In publishing to the world, the result of my 
investigations on the several subjects herein discussed, I do it^ 
with unfeigned diffidence, and with a trembling sense of the res- 
ponsibility which I incur by so doing, — the opinions of many to 
the contrary notwithstanding. 

I repeat, that in presenting this work to my fellow^- citizens, 1 
do it not with a cold indifference, but with my most ardent wish- 
es for their improvement and prosperity; and for the continued 
increase of the wealth, the learning, and the political, moral and 
religious elevation of character, and the glory of my country— 
my whole country. 

I remain, gentle reader, 

With the most sincere respect. 
Your very humble servant. 

WILLIAM G. BROWNLOW, 



I 



WA^'S t 



SEIXG AN ENQUIRY INTO THE ORIGIN, DESIGN AND TEN- 
DENCY, OF THE NATIONAL SOCIETIES. 



CHAPTER I. 

FJSE, PROGRESS AND IMPORTANCE, OF SUNDAY SCHOOLS. 

That the Sabbath is a Divine institution, and one, too, of 
perpetual oblij^ation, will not be denied by those who have 
made the Bible their study. And, that the Sabbath had an 
earlier origin than Judaism, is a truth which does not depend 
on doubtful inference. We have an explicit account of its 
being instituted immediately after the creation of the world. 
The inspired historian, having represented the great Creator 
as resting from his work on the seventh day, adds, "And 
God blessed the seventh, day and sanctified it, because that 
in it He had rested from all his work which God created and 
made. " When, therefore, God sanctified the seventh day, 
He reserved it, set it apart for himself, to be spent in reli- 
gious exercises; declaring, at the same time, that this mode 
of spending it should be made beneficial to mankind. Again : 
on tracing the personal history of our Savior, as recorded by 
the evangelists, he is seen regularly devoting the Sabbath to 
the exercises of religion, and assembling with the congrega- 
tion at the public vv^orship of God; and on examining those 
of his actions to wiiich the Jews so seriously objected, it is 
evident they were performed, not with a view to weaken the 
Sabbath, but to vindicate it from those unauthorized addi- 
tions with which it had been encumbered, by the corruptions 
of the Pharisees. 

Once more:— In every age of Christianity, on this day the 
great Head of the Church has manifested His gracious pres- 
ence in the sanctuary, making the religious ordinances there 
administered the source of instruction, and comfort, and en- 
couragement to His people, and rendering His word '^quick 
and powerful'' in the awakening and turning of sinners from 
the error of their wa3^s. On this day God has ever granted 
His people special blessings, and has signally furthered, and 
graciously prospered the endeavors of pious teachers and 



16 HELPS TO THE STI'DY 

heads of families to imbue the minds of their pupils, chil- 
dren and servants, with religious knowledge, and to bring 
them under the influence of Christian principles. And on 
this day, especially, the religious instructions of the Sabbath 
school teacher, have been, in different branches ot the Chris- 
tian church, signally owned ot God: the seriously disposed 
youth has ever found them, on this day, peculiarly conducive 
to the furtherance of vital godliness, Tiie divine blessing 
thus conferred on the Sabbath day, is a standing proof, is per- 
petual evidence so to speak, of the importance of continuing 
a system of Sabbath school instructions, not only in this, that, 
or the other branch of the church, but in all her branches. — 
But more of this in the close of this chaptei-. 

It has been ascertained that Sunday schools for the instruc- 
tion of youth, were instituted, to some partial extent, in Ger- 
many, nearly a century ago. But the effective system now 
in operation, and which has proved to be a blessing to thous- 
ands, owes its origin to one whose name will be repeated 
with delight by thousands who are now laboring in the cause, 
and by generations yet to come. Robert Raikes, of Glou- 
cester, England, and a member of the High Church, com- 
menced liis operations in the year 1784. Having under his 
control at that time, a periodical, his views were made known 
through this channel, and copied into nearly all the London 
papers. He seenis to have had two objects in view in his 
laudable undertaking. 1st. To prevent the children of the 
poor from spending the Sabbath in idleness, filth, and mis- 
chief. 2d. To instruct them in the first rudiments of learn- 
ing and the Christian religion. The Rev. Richard Raikes, 
of the Church of England, and brother of the founder of 
Sunday schools, ardently seconded the efforts of his revered 
brother, soon after he commenced this labor of love. 

The pious and excellent Dr. Home, a Bishop of the same 
Church, was one of the first, if not the ver}^ first, to avow 
himself an advocate for Sunday schools from the pulpit. — 
But I should be doing great injustice to the memory of that 
great and good man, John Wesley, not to say, that he was 
also among the first, and most ardent supporters of these 
schools. In the eighty-first year of liis age, as may be seen 
in his Journal, he uses thefollovving language: ^'Sunday, ISth 
July, 1754, I preached morning and afternoon, in Bingley 
church, — before service I stepped into the Sunday school, 
which contains two hundred and forty children, tiiught every 
Sunday, by several masters. So, many children in one par- 
ish are restrained from open sin, and taught a little good man- 



OF PRESBTTERIAXISM. 17 

ners, at least, as well as to read the Bible. I find these schools 
springing up wherever I go. Perhaps God may have a 
deeper end therein than men are aware of. Who knows but 
some of these schools may become nurseries for christians?'' 
No sooner had Mr. Wesley heard of Mr. Ra ikes' plan, than 
he approved it, and published an account of it in the Armin- 
ian Alagazine for January, 17S5, and exhorted all the Meth- 
odist Societies to imitate this benevolent and laudable exam- 
ple. They immediately took his advice, and laboring, hard- 
working men and women, began to instruct the children of 
their neighbors, and go with them to the house of God on the 
Sabbath day. The consequence was, many thousands of those 
who had been rambling on the barren mountains of sin and 
folly, began to repay the christian labor bestowed upon them, 
by becoming useful members of society, and not a few of 
them continued to the day of their death, both to know and 
adorn the doctrines of the gospel of God their Savior. Charity 
sermons were soon preached throughout every part of Eng- 
land, in behalf of these schools, and considerable sums of 
money were raised for their support. The Sunday schools in 
those days, it will be recollected, were ordinary schools, only 
taught on Sunday, by hiied masters. There were, so early as 
1S02, thirty thousand children instructed in Sabbath schools 
by the Methodists of England, on the Lord's day. The con- 
ductors of the Methodist Sunday schools in London, formed in 
18d2, a committee for corresponding with persons in the coun- 
try, engaged in the same good work, with a view of extending 
and establishing Sunday schools on the plan of employing 
gi^atiiitous teachers only, in the different parts of England, 
Thus, it will be seen, that the Methodists in this, as well as 
in all other matters of religion, have been the first to do hi\<i- 
ness on the gratuitouspla?i. They distributed some' hun- 
dreds of the proposed plans, and were very prosperous in 
their efforts. Others of the Episcopal, Independent, Pres- 
byterian and Baptist denominations also engaged in this good 
work, and great and many have been the blessings attending 
the labor of that one man, Mr Raikes, and many will rise up', 
no doubt, in the great day of judgment, and call him bless- 
ed. 

For the information of such as may not be apprized of 
the fact, I will just say, that Mrs. Bradburn, consort of Rev,. 
Samuel Bradburn, of the British Wesleyan Connexion, first 
suggested to Mr. Raikes, the plan of instructing children in 
Sabbath schools. Commiserating the case of a large number 
of ragged children, Mr. Raikes and Mrs..Bradburn together, 
ii2. 



IS HELPS TO THE STUDY 

conducted the first company of Sunday scholars to the 
church, exposed to public laughter as they passed along the 
slreet with their unpromising charge. Thus, it will be seen, 
that Sunday schools, under God owe their origin to MetJio- 
dism. 

Then, in the year 1785, schools were originated in various 
places in the neighborliood of London, and as early as 1789, 
were introduced into Wales, Scotland and Ireland. About 
the same time they were commenced in America. The 
Presbyterians claim the honor of establishing the first Sab- 
bath school, in the present form in the United States, in the 
cit}' of Pittsburg, in Pennsylvania, in 1809. But in this, 
our Presbyterian friends are wretchedly mistaken. They 
did, it is true, form a small ^'moral society" in that city, in 
1809, which, on the first Sabbath of September in that year, 
was converted into a Sunday school; but this being so late as 
1809, proves them to have been several years behind the 
news! Bishop White, of the Piotestant Episcopal Church, 
and of the City of Philadelphia, was the first President, of 
the first organized Sabbath school in the United States; and if 
I am not greatly deceived, the Bishop still holds the same of- 
fice to this day. The first Sunday school, put in operation in 
Am.erica, on the plan oi volunteer teachers, was in Christ 
Church, Boston; and in this school alone, since its oro;aniza- 
tion, upwards of 2000 children have been instructed. la 
the year 1811, a flourishing Sunday school was organized in 
the city of Philadelphia, under the auspices of the Rev. Rob- 
ert May, a missionary from London, of the Church of Eng- 
land. In the year 1813, another Sunday school was organ- 
ized by a benevolent gentleman in the city of Albany, and 
continued in existence for a considerable time. Li the year 
1514, and in the month of June, tvvo benevolent ladies of the 
city of New York, opened a Sunday school for adults and 
children, in which it is said between eighty and ninety were 
collected and taught for some time. In the fall of this same 
year, a Sunday school of much promise, was es<-ablished in 
Wilmington, in the little State of Delaware. In the year 
1815, and in the month of April, a Sunday school was com- 
menced in the Northern Liberties of Philadelphia, and in a 
very short time the different branches belonging to this 
school, contained something upwards of five hundred schol- 
ars. And in the year 1816, Sunday schools began to be gen- 
erally introduced in all parts of our country. Some few 
years ago, the efforts of the difierent denominations, to pro- 
mote Sabbath schools in the different sections of our coun- 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. ±9 

try, had well nigh become concentrated in the American 
Sunday School Union; but, upon their finding this institution 
to be not only sectarian, but actually corrupt — they with- 
drew their influence from it, and set up separate establish- 
ments of their own. The Presbyterians and Congregation- 
alists alone, ^Y^ now, properly speaking, the friends and sup- 
porters of this institution. The Protestant Episcopal, the 
Reformed Dutch, the Baptist, and the Methodist Churches, 
and the Friends or Quakers, have their own Sunday School 
t'^/ow^, or societies; and these Churches have officially, and 
loudly, from time to time called upon their own friends to 
rally around their oivn unions, and assist them in publishing 
their own books, and instructing their own children and 
youth. The Protestant Episcopal Sunday School Un- 
lox has been in existence eight years, having been organized 
in the city of New York, in June, 1826. And there are now 
about 40^000 children in the Sunday schools of the Protest- 
ant Episcopal Church in the United States. And by the by, 
I award, as has always been done, to the Episcopalians the 
priority in the defence of Church, or denominational reli- 
gious societies, in opposition to the plan of iiatiomil veWo^xoMs 
societies. I am informed, from a good source too, that Bish- 
op Hobart, of this Church, was the first to make a stand in 
defence of the former, and in opposition to the latter. As 
it regards the Methodist Episcopal Church in the United 
States, the plan of classing and instructing children in this 
way, is by no means of recent origin, but is as old as the or- 
ganization of the Church itself; and therefore, we as Metho- 
dists, commenced the instruction of the youth of this coun- 
try, even before the Episcopalians. 

The Church of England, in this country, became extinct 
in 1776, on the declaration of American Independence; and 
the Methodist Episcopal Church was organized in the close 
of the year 1784, near five years before the organization of 
t\\Q present Protestant Episcopal Church, which took place 
in 1789. So that when the Methodist Episcopal Church was 
organized, the Church of England had become extinct, and 
the Protestant Episcopal Church had never existed, that is, 
in its present forr)i. But to return from this digression, it 
ever has been, and still is, the special duty of every Method- 
ist circuit preacher to thus instruct the children within his 
bounds, and even to organize Sunday schools, all which may 
be seen by referring to our book of Discipline. But we, as 
a church, thinking the "movements of our preachers rather 
tardy, and wishing to facilitate the progress of Sunday schools 



■*'- 



20 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

among our people, did, on the 2d of April, 1827, in the city 
of New York, form ourselves into a union separate from all 
others, to be denominated the **Sunday School Uxion of 
THE Methodist Episcopal Church;" and at our first An- 
nual meeting, held on Wednesday evening, the 14th of May, 
1828, there were in connexion with our union, 891 schools, 
embracing 45,750 scholars, and 8,910 teachers employed ev- 
ery Sabbath, besides officers, managers and visiters. Our 
union has now existed seven years; and our success has been 
such during that time, that in point of usefulness we are not 
excelled by any, and in point of numDers, we are only excell- 
ed by that mammoth institution, — the American Sunday 
School Union. Who can withhold his astonishment in look- 
ing at the rapid multiplication of Sunday schools within the 
last forty years? In Great Britain, there are more than 8000 
schools, containing 80,000 teachers, and about 100,000 chil- 
dren. The whole number of Sunday school scholars in 
the United States, is estimated at considerably upwards of 
1,000,000. They have been established also in many por- 
tions of the Heathen world, by the Missionaries of the Cross. 
In the Sandwich Islands alone, it is said, there are more than 
10,000 Sunday school scholars. And, that this truly noble 
and benevolent plan may continue under wise and judicious 
direction, that it maybe crowned with success by Him who 
alone has power so to crown it, — and that the kingdom of 
Christ may come through its instrumentality, should be the 
wish and fervent prayer of all mankind. The Sunday school 
cause is one of the best causes in the whole world. All but 
infidels will admit this. It has been the means of the con- 
version of thousands of immortal souls. The orphan and 
the destitute have there been taught the way to heaven. Had 
they not been there taught they would perhaps have perished, 
I have recently seen an account of a meeting held in Cincin- 
nati, Ohio, in which a highly respectable clergyman remark- 
ed that, while in College, he had ten pious fellow-students. 
Now in the same College there were eighty, mostly through 
the influence of Sunday schools. He had recently visited 
four hundred young men in various institutions, who were 
professors of religion, the greater proportion of whom were 
converted in Sabbath schools. And I am authorized to say, 
that two-thirds ot the missionaries who have gone out from 
Great Britain, and nineteen-tvventiethsof the dissenting min- 
isters in that nation were converted in Sabbath schools! — 
Then who would not be engaged in this good, this glorious 
cause? Brethren in the ministry! use all your skill, and exert 



OF PBESBYTERIAXISM. . 21 

your utmost abilities to promote this cause; for by so doing, 
you may rest assured, you promote the Redeemer's cause. Fath- 
ers in Israel! you, whose heads have blossomed for the grave, 
whose eyes have grown dim with age — you, whose race is 
well nigh ended, say, would it not be a cheering, a blessed 
contemplation, when }'ou come to lay your heads upon your 
dying pillow, to look abroad into the wide world, which you 
are about leaving, and see that orphan^y, that child of af- 
fliction — at one time in the broad rom to ruin, without a 
friend to point out to him the path of rectitude, exposed to 
the snares of the infidel, and allurements of a sinful world — 
tosee /i^??^happyin a Savior's love; and this, through your 
instrumentality? Sabbath school instructions, wherever prop- 
erly tested, have been attended with these beneficial results. 
Ey their influence, hundreds and thousands of destitute chil- 
dren have been reclaimed from the error of their ways, from 
vice, from Sabbath-breaking, with all its soul-shivering reti- 
nue of vagrant and pernicious habits, and brought into sweet 
subordination to the will of God, and the sober decencies of 
life. I scarcely know how to dismiss this subject. I would 
say to all the friends of Zion, help to nerve the cause of Sab- 
bath schools on to victorv, and you will neither regret it in 
time or eternity. When j'ou are on your death-bed, and this 
world is fast receding from your sight, and you are about des- 
cending into the lonely tomb, this consolation shall smooth 
your passage through the dark valley, that the Sunday school 



CHAPTER 11. 

ORIGIN AND DESIGN OF THE AMERICAN SUNDAY SCHOOL 

UNION. 

^ In the year ISl 7, the ^'Philadelphia Sunday and Adult 
School Union" was formed, and incorporated in 1818, by 
persons belonging to different denominations; being of the 
same character, in several respects, as the "First Day or Sun- 
day School Society," which had been organized some twen- 
ty years before it, and of which the venerable Bishop White 
was the first president. In 1824, there were connected with 
this Society 4 G,619 scholars, wuth 7,300 teachers; and the so- 
ciety had a stock on hand, amounting to §5000, contributed 
by different denominations. Sabbath schools had now be- 
come extensively established in various parts of the United 



22 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

States, and, in accordance with the wishes of the Presbyte- 
riansy the American Sunday School Union was organized 
in Philadelphia, in May, 1824, and the auxiliary schools and 
societies, with the stock above mentioned, were transferred 
from the old to the new institution ! ! ! 

It is now just ten years since the formation of this institu- 
tion. For more than four years previous to the formation of 
this institution, the Q|^anization of a general Sunday School 
Union, in the Unite^States, had been an object every way 
dear, to many of the leading ministers of the Congregation- 
al and Presbyterian Churches. ,The first public notice of this 
subject that I remember to have seen, is contained in a pamph- 
let written on the subject of Sunday schools, in the city of 
New York, in May, 1S20. 

It w^as the principles and plan of the American Bible So- 
ciety, that first led the Presbyterians to desire a Sunday 
School Union of this kind. A Presbyterian committee, ap- 
pointed for the purpose of examining into and reporting on 
this subject, after alluding to the principles and plan of the 
A. B. S., express themselves in the following manner: — 
* 'Equally catholic in its principles, and simple in its design, 
the Sunday school system would be greatl}^ benefitted by such 
a union." The well known axiom, ''union is power," — 
seems to have been duly considered by the Presbyterians; for 
they apply it to every thing. With them there is no efficien- 
cy, physical, intellectual, or moral, but may be traced to this 
])rinciple. And yet, in reality, they are of all people, the 
farthest removed from the true principle of Christian union. 

My sentiments respecting the Jlrnerican Sunday School 
Union, areas follows: li is 2. sectarian institution, gotten 
up by the Presbyterians, for the express purj)Ose of abetting 
the cause of Freshyterianism, in these United States. It is 
of dangerous tendency. And whatever may be said by its 
advocates to relieve it from the suspicion of sectarian influ- 
ence, it is sectarian. The Presbyterians only, have a pre- 
ponderating influence in its councils, and just enough from 
among 'other denominations are classed w^ith the dominant 
sect to save appearances, — form a zest for the song of u?iio?i, 
and give a tone to the sound of. Catholicism. But more of 
this in its proper place. With what intent did the Presby- 
terians cause this institution to be organized? And what 
have the managers and friends of the institution declared they 
would accomplish through it? The proper answer to these 
anxious interrogatories will at once disclose the whole se« 
crct. 



OF rRESBYTERlANISW. 23 

The managers of the American Sunday School Union, in 
their Report for 1827, say, — ^'the experience of the civilized 
world demonstrates that the character of the man is built on 
the principles instilled into the mind of the child.^^ In view 
of this grand axiom, they propose to spread themselves, to 
use their own language, ^^overthe whole ground of the re- 
ligious education of youth;" — to ^*keep pace with every 
INCREASE OF POPULATION," and Consequently, to assume to 
themselves the exclusive formation offthe character of the 
entire future population of our country, to every succeeding 
generation, and however extended and multiplied ! This is, 
indeed, as the managers themselves term it "an engine" — and 
as they say, one "which, when put into full operation, will 
work with great and unexampled power." And I con- 
fess it to be "an engine," in my view, of such power, that I 
am unwilling to trust the working of it, on the children of 
our country, to the hands of these managers. Again; the 
board of managers avow themselves, to use their own words, 
"desirous, not only of furnishing their own schools with 
suitable books, but of introducing such books into schools of 
a different description, and of rendering them so abund- 
ant as to FORCE out of circulation those which tend to 
mislead the mind, and to fill it with what must be injurious 
to it in subsequent life. " These same managers, for this same 
American Union, further say of themselves: — "In pursuing 
this department of their labors, they acknowledge that they 
assume an immense responsibility in becoming dictators 
to the consciences of thousands of immortal bemgs." But 
they declare that ^Hhey have chosen to do this,^^ making in 
any work which they publish such alterations as they judge 
necessary. Perhaps all this is very good. But whom shall 
the American people trust to ^'dictate'' for them, what is 
gospel truth.-* These managers avow, as an apology for as- 
suming this high ground, that they doit, "rather than tamely 
issue sentiments, which in their conscience, they believe 
to be false, or inconsistent with the purity of divine 
truth!" 

But can the Methodists, Episcopalians, Baptists, Luther- 
ans, Quakers, &c. "tamely submit" to have their children's 
consciences moulded and formed by these would-be dicta- 
tors? Who do these denominations wish to dictate to their 
children, what is ^'false,'' and what is ^'divine truth?^^ To 
dictate it exclusively, universally, and perpetually! and to 
compel all others to submit to the dictation, by '^forcing 
out of circulation^''^ not only from their own schools, but 



24 # n^ELPS TO THE STIJDT 

from all other schools, all books which ihey shall consider a^ 
not teaching ^^divine truth/' and instilling into the minds of 
the whole of the youth of our land, in order to form the char- 
acter of the future men, such principles, for gospel princi- 
ples, as they only, at their uncontrolled discretion, shall think 
proper to approve and sanction. Heaven knows! this is as- 
suming high ground sure enough. But are we prepared for 
an exploit of this kind? Certainly not. And God forbid, I 
-say, that the Methodist Church ever should "tamely submit" 
to wear a yoke of this kind! But reader, all this power and 
influence, which is to be extended through county, town, and 
city depositories into every part of this nation — which is to 
be extended over the ^^whole ground^ ^ of the education of the 
children of our land — which is to keep pace with the rapid 
increase of population, and is to ^^force out of circulation^'' 
all books which these monarchs ^^of all they survey," and 
lords *^of the fowl and the brute," whose dominion is ^<from 
the centre all round to the sea," — is in the hands of a volun- 
tary associationoi individuals, the constitution of which 
does not contain one single provision for securing a restrain- 
ed exercise o( this power, by ^^forcing" its members to elect 
its officers from amongjdifferent sects, but admits by its^ezi- 
eral terms^ not only me possibility, but even the probability, 
that it will, in process of time, and perhaps, at no distant pe- 
riod, he engrossed by that sect, for whose special benefit it 
was set on foot. And according to the prediction of that fa- 
mous religious and political prognosticator, Ezra Styles 
Ely, D. D., of Philadelphia, the period is now close at hand 
when they will have engrossed this power. This clergyman, 
of political notoriety^ in 1828, uttered the following pre- 
diction: ^^About 12,00©,000 of persons in our country will 
decease in the course of thirty years; and of course nearly 
4,000,000 in ten years. In the same ten years at least one 
third of all the legal electors of the country will have be- 
come of age to vote in elections, and of these a large por- 
tion will have experienced all the moral and benign effects of 
Sabbath schools. Under the influence of moral and reli- 
gious principles formed in Sabbath schools, they will regulate 
their political conduct." But our political parson contin- 
ues, "It is highly probable, therefore, that in ten years the 
blessed result of our Sabbath schools will be, to exclude, law- 
fully, all wicked men from offices, by the refusal on the part 
of the people to elect them. This is a consummation most de- 
voutly to be wished by all. The okthodox are endeavoring 
,to get the government of the nation into their hands, it is 



OF PRESBXTERIANISM^ 



Hh 



trae, by endeavoring through the power of the truth to 
make all their fellow-citizens men of moral and religious 
character." 

I now have before me a sermon, preached in Philadelphia, at 
the request of the American Sunday School Union, May 23, 
1531, by Rev. Heman Humphrey, D. D. President of Am- 
herst College, Mass. from which I propose to give some ex- 
tracts. Thousands of copies were printed by the Union, 
and triumphantly circulated by its agents and friends. After 
speaking of our improvements in mechanics, in the arts, and 
in the use of natural agents, our parson comes to the science 
of education^ and says, ^'hardly a month passes without some 
new invention, or discovery, by which ^ower is gained, or 
dispensed with;'' and on the same page he enquires, <'And who 
can look at these great benevolent institutions, which are the 
glory of the present age, without being struck with the simpli- 
city of their principles; with the unparalleled extent and ef- 
ficiency of their operations?" And again ; <*And this great and 
prosperous Union, what is it doing, what can it ever do more 
than is implied in these few monosyllables, train iipachildin 
the way he should go? As there never was a more simple plan, 
thought of for renovating the world, so none could be more 
comprehensive oreffectual. Let itonce be thoroughey triei^ 
in any state or nation, with humble reliance on the grace of 
God; that is, let every child be trained up from infancy in the 
right way, and hov/ wonderful would be the moral trans- 
formation in the space of lorty years!" But the following 
'political sentence is still stronger: — ^-What an awful dearth 
of piety is there, at the head ^f more than a million and a 
half of American families! From this quarter then, a reli- 
gious influence upon all who are now coming into life, with 

the DESTINIES OF THE NATION IN THEIR HANDS, is hopcleSS !" 

In speaking oi the designs of the Union, the preacher say,?, 
**The obvious design of the system is, to tre-occupy thi: 
INFANT MIND, throughout this great republic, with the prin- 
ciples of virtue'and piety — to sow the good seedj and keep 
out the TARES— to teach all the rising millions of a mighty 
empire, as they come up successively into life, their relations 
to God, and their high duties;" and in closing this part of hit- 
sermon, he says, ^*such is the undisguised, the godlike de- 
sign of the American Sunday School Union.'' Godlike in- 
deed! I presume the reader is now prepared to decide, wheth- 
er this institution, after having so openly avowed its inten- 
tion to control the education of the children of our common 
country, or to <^pre* occupy the infant mind, throughout thi? 
c 



26 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

great republic," until the political power shall be on their 
side; and so manifestly tending to come under the control of 
2. single deno7)iinati07i,\vi\\, or will not, eventually become, 
as a RELIGIOUS ESTABLISHMENT, dangcrous to the liberties of 
our country — our dear country. But should this institution 
be, at length managed, as recent examples in the history of 
Presbyterian Colleges in New-England prove to be possible, 
by irreligious hands — to whom from the testimony of its 
own managers it is accessible — I ask, may it not be used even 
to the overthrow of Christianity itself? 

From this, and many other weighty considerations, tlic 
Legislature of Pennsylvania, in 1828, refused by acclamation, 
as I will show in this work, to incorporate the American Sun- 
day School Union. Why did the Legislature of this State, 
act thus, if there were no apprehensions of the Union as a 
religious establishment? Was it because the members of 
that Legislature were all infidels, or enemies to God? No, 
verily, those who opposed the measure most warmly, were 
both christians and patriots. And because of these things, 
Stephen Girard of Philadelphia, did, in his wall, so cautious- 
ly guard the religious instruction in the College, he ordered 
to be erected in that city. Jiut forsooth! the friends of this 
Union have already avowed their entire competency to take 
charge of the religious department of instruction in the Gi- 
rard College, under the provisions of Girard's will; and I 
fully expect they will do so. 

Fellow-citizens, our craft is in danger of being set at 
nought, and we ourselves, of being called upon to cry out 
with one accord, saying, great is this Diana of the Ephe- 
sians! Awake and come forth! Action, — action, — action 
must now be our watch-word ! 



CHAPTER III. 

THE COPY-RIGHT QUESTION AND THE AMERICAN SUNDAY 

SCHOOL UNION DIFFERENCE IN THE SALES OF ITS BOOKS 

TO DIFFERENT UNIONS OR SCHOOLS DIFFERENT DENOM- 
INATIONS REPRESENTED IN THE UNION THE CALVINISTS 

HAVE A PREPONDERATING INFLUENCE, &C. 

Those of my readers, who have been accustomed to no- 
tice the public prints, with any degree of attention, for the 
last two or three years, doubtless recollect that great excite- 



or PRESBYTERIANISM. 27 

mcnt prevailed throughout our country, occasioned by the 
American Sunday School Union, having restrained the circu- 
lation of many valuable Sunday school books, by taking out a 
copy-right for them. Accordingly, in October, 1832, there 
was a Sunday school convention held in the city of New 
York, composed of Delegates from the different Sunday 
School Unions; at which the Editors of the Sunday School 
books, for the Sunday School Union of the Methodist Espis- 
copal Church, proposed to the convention, that all Sunday 
school societies should cease to restrain the circulation of Sun- 
day school books, by taking out a copy-right, &c. The Rev. 
iNIessrs. Durbin and Bangs, are the Methodist Editors to 
whom I alhide, and the individuals who moved for a commit- 
tee to examine the question: by this means the copy-right 
question came before the public. The resolution ofiered b}- 
these gentlemen, was the following: '^Resolved, that a com- 
mittee be appointed to take into" consideration the following 
proposition, viz: — Whether it he expedient, or, consistent 
witJithe spirit of the great benevolent enterprize of tht 
day, for Sunday School Societies or associations to re- 
strain tlie circulation of Sunday School books jjroper, by 
taking out a copy -right Jor the same. 

This resolution was not offered, nor was it understood to 
be made, in reference to the Sunday School Union of the 
Methodist Episcopal Church only, but in reference to all 
Sunday School associations, which may choose to avail them- 
selves of the advantages growing out of the suppression of 
copy-rights. This proposition was made, because it was be- 
lieved it would be acceptable to all Sunday School associa- 
tions, and the benefits would be mutual to all. It was made, 
because it was thought it would strengthen the Sunday School 
interest generally, and promote the cause of general benev- 
olence. And it was made, last of all, because it was believed 
that no Sunday School association, or any other benevolent 
association, in the world, that asks the public for money to 
aid tfiem in purchasing books ^\\on\^ restrain their /ree cir- 
culation by securing the copy-right. But it seems that the 
American Sunday School Union, which was commenced, and 
has been carried on and sustained solely by the voluntary 
contributions oi the public, is alone guilty of this practice; 
and hence it was, that when Messrs. Durbin and Bangs made 
this proposition, a distinguished individual belonging to the 
American Union moved, ''That the proposition be indefin- 
itely postponed, and that the question be taken loithout de- 
hate! IT'' How true is that sentiment that those whose 



58 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

deeds are evil, prefer darkness to light t Upon an appeal hy 
the Chairman, Mr. Frelinghuysen, an honorable United 
States Senator from New Jersey, and an officer of the Amer- 
ican Sunday School Union, it was decided that such a motion 
was in order ! ! An appeal was taken from the Chair and 
the Convention sustained the Chair 1 If the darts of death 
had flown as thick through the house as they did in the Tro- 
jan War, the 7iaHonal party could not have heen more agi- 
tated, than they were by the introduction of this resolution. 
During the agitation which this very singular motion produc- 
ed, several other motions were attempted by the 7iationals^ 
such for instance as to "dismiss,'' — to "Squash'' the proposi- 
tion, &c. The movers of this generous and benevolent propo- 
sition, finding it was to be turned out of the Convention with- 
out a hearing, rose to offer an amendment: the Chair decid- 
ed it must be taken ivithoiit debate! — The movers submit- 
ted of course; and moved to amend the motion of indefinite 
postponement without debate, by requesting an opportunity 
of stating their reasons for submitting the copy-right 
question, or proposition. The amendment was also lost! — 
The question then recurred upon a postponement without 
debate, and was carried 51 to 24 \ ! ! With regard to the 
state of feeling on this occasion, Mr. Durbin in the Advocate 
and Journal remarks: — "It is impossible for those who were 
not present, to conceive the state of feeling which followed: 
the members, and the audience all partook of it. Several 
of the warm friends of the proposition retired to the doors!'' 
1 have not heard of such concentrated villainy, since the 
Burr conspiracy. 

The movers of this proposition then commenced an expo- 
sition of this question at large, and a defence of their resolu- 
tion through the columns of the Advocate; when the man- 
agers of the American Sunday School Union becoming alarm- 
ed, proposed, tlirough the columns of the "American Sun- 
day School Journal," that '^some private ejforts^^ be made 
to settle the dispute, saying, ^^TVoiddit not be viost advisa-. 
ble, in view of the common danger to religion and the Sun- 
day School department ? '' 

The Editors of the Advocate, Messrs. Durbin and Merritt,, 
understanding this language to be a request^ on the part of 
the American Sunday School Union, to open a negotiation for 
the adjustment of the question to the mutual advantage of all 
concerned, readily complied with it; and accordingly ad- 
dressed them a private letter, in which, they assigned various 
reasons why the puhli,CAtion of Sunday S,c|i,o,o.l hooks slxould 



not be restrained, and made liberal offers, proposing to pub- 
lish others books for the general good. But the managers 
replied at length, saymg they were willing to publish such 
books belonging to other Sunday School associations, as were 
not sectarian; but urged various reasons why they could not 
<!onsent to let their books be published by their neighbors, 
&:c. The principle reason assigned by the Board for not con- 
senting to have their books published by other Sunday School 
associations, is, there could be no interchange of advant- 
AG-E accruing to this society/' Now, the "advantage"' 
intended in this remark is pecuniary. It is certainly a 
moral advantage to circulate a good book published by 
any association, though that association may not get a 
good book that they may circulate in turn. 1 should have 
supposed, that the great moral advantage is the first object 
with every public benevolent society. At least, they all 
make this profession, when they are soliciting the charities of 
llie public. This paragraph, as well as many others in this 
same reply, intimates too strongly a sectional instead of a 
/?.«if/o^^«/ character for the American Sunday School Union.. 
The American Union has done some good, and might be the 
instrument of doing much more, in my humble opinion, if its 
policy were a liberal policy, and of a more benevolent x^Xkv^x 
tJian business character. The idea that the Methodist Church 
is opposed to the American Union, or any other American 
Society, while doing good , is unfounded, and has grown out 
of two facts; — her resistance to the principle of imposing a 
/2a^i07i«/ character upon public benevolent societies, so as to 
merge all distinction of sects in their operation, which course 
she has ever thought, and still thinks unsafe and unwise. — 
And her resistance to the strenuous efforts, and misrepresenta- 
tions of most of their agents to induce the public, and espe- 
cially her people to believe, that she is among their patrons. 
We are very gravely told by a correspondent in the Sun- 
day School Journal, and also by their Board and numerous 
agents, that, if we (the Methodists) want their books we ^'ean 
buy them ready made. '^ But they know that we can never 
become regular customers to that Union, because we should 
have to pay higher for the same books than some other 
schools and persons. In the twelfth edition, 1832, of the 
catalogue of the American Sunday School Union books, we 
find, ^'all other societies, schools, or individuals, will be 
charged one-fourth advance !'' The reason why the 
higher price to non-auxiliaries is now put on in * ^advance" 
instead of the old plan of discount to auxiliaries, no doubt 
c2. 



30 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

exists some where; and if it were my province to account for 
it, I should say, the change has been made with a view to buy 
up schools. And in this respect, I most sincerely believe, 
that all certain politicians have said of the United States 
Bank, will apply with y^rce to this institution — particularly 
of late. But I am very certain, that if their terms were noiCr 
and had been from the ^r*/, equally liberal to all Sunday 
School societies, this copy-right question mi^ht never have 
been raised. It is, however, an important fact in this inves- 
tigation, that any Sunday School, not auxiliary to them, must 
^^y twenty-Jive per ce7it, more for their books. And now, 
admitting their books to be cheap, this would make them 
come at a high price to others, and it is therefore, the interest 
of others to publish books, if they want them, rather than 
purchase of them under such circumstances. But it has 
been said, that it comes with an ill grace from Methodists to 
expect any advantages from the American Union, since they 
have not aided it by contributions. I reply — it would be 
found upon examination, that the members and congregations 
of the Methodist Episcopal Church, have contributed more 
money to the American Sunday School Union, than would 
replace every dollar they have paid out for copy-rights, vvith 
compound interest. Why then may we notcl&im some ^'ad- 
vantage," if we choose to use it, from the effects of the ma- 
ny thousand dollars given by all denominations for the com- 
mon good ? There are no other benevolent societies in Amer- 
ica, found protecting their issues hy copy-right, but this biis-i- 
i^ie.95 institution at Philadelphia. And wherefore? Because^ 
no other benevolent society wishes to '^force out of circular 
tion^^ the books printed by those who are not of its fold. 

Again: — The time has been, when the Methodists, Epis- 
copalians, Baptists, &c. contributed largely to the support of 
the American Sunday School Union, alt lough they were not 
connected with it; but this is no longer the case, since these 
denominations have organized Sunday School societies of 
their own. And though individual memhers of these church- 
es still belong to the American Union, those denominations 
as such, are not now, nor never were attached to that Union, 
the repeated assertions of its numerous agents to the contra- 
ry notwithstanding. 

The Methodists and Episcopalians, have avowed their de- 
termination never to become auxiliary to the American Un- 
ion — for reasons too, which must be obvious to every re* 
fleeting mind. It will not be denied by the Board them- 
selves, but what the Calvinistic Churches, and the Calvini«tic 



OF PRESBYTBRIANISM. ^1 

sections of the general Church, give their- entire patronage 
to all the national societies; and hence of necessity have a 
preponderating influence in all their councils, and interest in 
them. 

The Arrainian Churches, and Arminian sections of the 
Church saw clearly that their influence would be neutralized, 
and made to subserve the general cause of Calvinism, by join- 
ing in with the national societies. xVnd if the national soci- 
eties did not intend or wish to produce this result, such a re- 
sult is nevertheless inevitable, from the very nature and rela- 
tive influence of the various Churches. Hence the Armini- 
an Churches have declined, and refused to be subscribers, for 
which they have been treated very uncourteously by thena- 
tionah. 

Now I ask an impartial public if those Churches can be 
blamed for declining? And I enquire' again, as the Ameri- 
ran Union asks no money for schools in order ta become aux- 
iliary, would- it not be the same to them to sell to all schools 
at the same priced If the friends of the Union say it 
would not, I ask the special favor of some one of them, \j^ 
explain to me why it would not. The Union does not pro- 
pose to gain any pecuniary advantige by this arrangement^ 
but to confer an advantage of twenty -Jive per cent, on such 
schools as will become auxiliary to them. Now as it gains 
nothing pecuniary by a school's becoming auxiliary, why 
charge such school <'one-fourth advance," if it cannot con- 
scientiously become auxiliary? This is the case with the 
schools under the care of both the Methodist and Episcopali- 
an Churches. And yet, the schools of these Churches art? 
said to be sectarian; and those under the American Union 
are represented as liberal beyond description ! 

And the caicse why the American Union ofiers an induce- 
ment of 25 per cent, for schools to become auxiliary to them, 
is another reason why the Methodist Church, and why large 
sections of almost every Church in the country, have declin- 
ed. And the reason why and wherefore^ the American Un- 
ion acts thus, would at once discover the true cause of all this 
controversy. But to return: Art. 4th of the constitution of 
the American Union says, <<The officers and managers shall 
be laymen^ and shall be elected by ballot/' Art. 9th of 
the by-laws says, "The committee of publication shall con- 
sist of eight members from at least ybwr different denomiTh^ 
ations of Christians, and not more than two members front 
any one denomination." Eigth annual report, pp. 31, 32; — 
**Wedo not pretend that denominations, as such, arerepre- 



32 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

??ented (technically speaking) in our board. — We only claim 
the confidence and support of all denominations, on the 
sjround that their members share in the management and con- 
trol of all our business, and that the rights and views of each 
are consulted and respected, as far as they possibly can be 
under any circumstances, provided equal deference is paid to 
tiie rights and views of all. " These are the passages usually 
read by agents in the west. And to all this liberality in let- 
ters I have no objections: and I am willing to admit, for the 
sake of argument, that the American Union intended to do 
all it promises. But I have shown above that it is impossible in 
the very nature of things to comply with these promises. It 
is impossible not to see that the Calvinistic interest, take the 
Union throughout, will predominate. We have sufficient 
proof of this in the report for 1832. Take the following 
sentence: — "The whole number of officers and managers of 
the board is seventy-six, of these there are Presbyterians, 
twenty-six; Episcopalians, fourteen; Baptists, ten ; Metho- 
dists, ten; Congregationalists, eight; Reformed Dutch, four; 
Moravians, one; Friends, one; denominations unknown. 
two — seventy-six/' Now the question is, hoiv tnany of 
these seventy-six managers are Arininians7 If we count 
the two unknown — Friends one — Moravians one — Metho- 
dists ten, we have the appalling number of fourteen «>lr- 
9ninians, and sixty-two Calvinists! ! 

It may be said, and doubtless will be, that some of the in- 
dividuals here reckoned Calvinists are not so, and some reck- 
oned Arminians may not be so : I have reckoned them accord- 
ing to the doctrines of those churches and sections of church- 
es to which they belong. It is well known that it is the Cal- 
vinistic section of the Protestant Episcopal Church, which 
favors the Union, and not the ^rminian section of said 
church. Next, look at the list of '^ministers members for 
life,^^ in the eighth report, and the result will be astonishing! 
There are well on iofive hundred, only one of which is a 
Methodist preacher, and he was made a member by a Pres- 
byterian congregation ! 

Now agreeably to the above state of things, what security 
have we for the character of the publications to be issued 
from that establishment ? The committee of publication con- 
sists of eight members, representing four different denomin- 
ations. They must be all laymen, nominated annually by 
two members, appointed by the board, who with the presi- 
dent, or acting vice-president, constitute a committee of nom- 
iaation. From this most important committee, all minisier^ 



or PRESBTTEEIANISM. 33 

of the gospel, are excluded by the constitution. That none 
out laymen are capable and worthy of so ^reat a trust, or that 
they are exempt from sectarian bias, and beyond the reach 
of sectarian influence, will hardly be argued by any one. 
Yet it is a singular anomaly, that under the same constitu- 
tion, ministers are employed as missionaries, to instil '^gos- 
])el truth" alias, Calvinism into theear^ of children, and of 
Sabbath school teachers, and it is intended to continue to em- 
ploy them f^to the utmost possible extent T^ There is no 
security that a single member of the publishing committee 
will at any time be a Methodist. Or if one, or more, be this 
year, there is no security that any will be next year, or the 
year following. It may be composed of ^'four different de- 
nominations;" of which a majority may govern; or all of 
them may be Presbyterians, Dutch Reformed, and Baptists; 
or Protestant Episcopalians of the Calvinistic school. And 
this I say without anj^ sort of disrespect to those denomina- 
tions. But if a Methodist be on that committee, we have no 
security for his competency to its great duties, nor for his 
leisure and strength, to attend to them. Besides this, there 
are now, not more than ten Methodists in our whole coun- 
try, actively engaged in connection with the American Un- 
ion. And if there were even hundreds, the mere name of a 
Methodist on the committee, is a very small matter; and es- 
pecially of one in whose selection the Church has had no 
voice; over whom she has no control; and who, for the per- 
formance of his duty, is in no way responsible to her. She 
does not trust her own publications, among her own minis- 
ters, in so loose a way. Even those ministers selected by her 
General Conference, for the publication of her own books, 
are not allowed to issue any original work, without the pre-, 
vious sanction of an experienced standing Book Committee, 
or the recommendation of an Annual Conference. 

But that feature in the organization of the board of man- 
agers of the American Sunday School, at which I have glanc- 
ed in the above paragraph, has had much influence in induc- 
ing the Methodists and Episcopalians, to have no connexion 
with it. I mean the ^'Comm,itte of missions, within their 
body!" The report of May, XS26, now lying before me, 
states that, "Under their diiection., thirty-one missionaries. 
had been employed." And it was then resblved by the so- 
ciety, * 'that it be recommended to the managers to prosecute 
this department of their labors to the utmost possible ex-^ 
TENT ! ! ! These missionaries are expected not only to apply 
their attention to the business of forming Sunday Schools^ 



Si, HELPS TO THE STUDY 

but also to preach to adults. And in this way it is calculated 
that employment and support may be afforded to many young 
Presbyterian ministers who may be sent out from the Theo- 
logical Seminaries, as well as to some older ones, who per- 
haps have no otlier special CALL, at least till they can be en- 
abled to collect, or rather find congregations in which they 
may become settled. For all this there must be funds. 
Hence the board of the American Sunday School Union say, 
they ''have resolved that the sums paid by societies, when 
becoming auxiliary shall be appropriated to the missionary 
FUND.'' Besides this, a Primer, with the stereotype plates 
from which it is printed, has also been presented by a mem- 
ber of the board, "on condition that 25 cents on every hun- 
dred copies sold, be appropriated to the missionary fund.^' 
And there is not di particle of security, to prevent a similar 
revenue being hereafter set apart for the benefit of the same 
fund, from the extensive sales of other publications of the 
Union; and I will venture to predict, that such will be the 
case in a few years. For Ihey have become somewhat inde- 
pendent, by having recently raised thirty-two thousand dol- 
lars, for the buildings, ^c. of the establishment in Philadel- 
phia. Now all this property, together with the books, stere- 
otype plates, money, ^c, of this institution, are wholly at 
the will and pleasure, at the annual option, not to say the ca- 
price, of its ballotting members! 

Li concluding this chapter, allow me to say, that if this 
institution will so amend its constitution, ^sio secure din equal 
number of representatives, from the different denominations, 
in its board of managers, its standing committees, and among 
its officers, agents, and hired missionaries, it will then give 
full proof of its catholic intentions, and remove many of the 
prejudices which exist against it — strong and well grounded 
prejudices. 



CHAPTER IV. 

THE BOOKS OF THE AMERICAN SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION, SEC- 
TARIAN. 

Many of the books issued from the Depository of this 
institution, are of a light and fictitious character; and this 
circumstance of itself, affords a solid objection to the Insti- 
tution. Now, I am sufficiently conversant with most of the 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 35 

publications of the Union to judge correctly on this subject; 
and I do know, that I am not mistaken on this pomt. Too 
many fictitious stories, and some of them containing few 
lessons of moral or religious instruction, have been put into 
circulation by the Union. The tendency of this is to vitiate 
the taste of the rising generation, so that while they are 
o-reedy after fiction, they will have no appetite for solid, in- 
structive reading. In a word, all light and fictitious ^yrl- 
tino-s, have in the main, a bad tendency, and are incompatible 
witli the simplicity and sincerity of the christian rehgion. 
But I confess, that to my mind, there is a more weighty ob- 
jection to the books of the Union, than even the above. It 
'is this. Many of them abound with the peculiaiities of Cal- 
vinism; and the reading of them, together with the lectures 
and explanations of Calvinistic teachers, must not only prove 
dangerous to children, but absolutely ruinous. True, a 
Sunday School teacher who seeks wisdom from on high, and 
draws his instructions from this pure fountain, will not be 
likely to be misled, or to mislead others, in any matter of mi- 
portance; but who will avow, that the thousands of Calyin- 
Fstic teachers in connexion with the Union, draw their rations 
from above? Therefore, it behooves all ^rmiiiian preach- 
ers, to see to it, that nothing is inculcated on the youth under 
their charge, whicli is inconsistent with that form of doctrine 
which they themselves esteem and teach to be truth. 

The Presbyterian, for January, 1832, then edited by Dr. 
Ely, and the official organ of the Church whose name it 
bears, after expressing its partialities and hearty wishes for 
the prosperity of the American Sunday School Union, thus 
announces its views in respect to the principle of general 
amalgamation, so as to destroy all sectarian and denomination- 
al distinctions:— <*But we do not rank ourselves among those 
indiscriminating enthusiasts who would have all our mstitu- 
tions of a religious nature, to be national and American, and 
^Vho therefore pass a sentence of condemnation to incurable 
narrow-mindedness and bigotry, upon all who approve ot the 
establishment of Sunday School Unions of a restricted char- 
acter. Nay, we commend the good sense and sound policy 
of the Episcopalians, Methodists, and Baptists, for having 
their own respective Sunday School Unions, through the in- 
strumentality of which they can furnish books for the in- 
struction of their children in those peculiarities which 
however disapproved of by us, ^vq precious to them. And 
we frankly own our surprise at the conduct of Presbyten- 
ans, who, haying equal liberty with their brethren of 



06 a,Bt:es to the study 0:1? 

other denominations, unwisely, we think, neglect to employ 
it to their own advantage." 

Again: A writer in the Presbyterian, for 1829, which pa- 
per I now have before me, after frankly acknowledging, that 
the Presbyterians as a body, * 'belong to the grand Union,'* 
adds: — < 'The Episcopalians have theirs; the Baptists theirs; 
the Methodists theirs; and the Catholics theirs; and these 
respective denominations are thus engaged to make known 
and propagate their peculiarities.^^ 

Now, if the Baptists, Episcopalians, Methodists, Catholics 
and others, have established separate SuViday School iTnions, 
(and I admit the truth of it) «'for the purpose" of propagat- 
ing ^'their peculiarities," I ask, who are the proper oiuners 
of the ^'grand union" if the Presbyterians are not? 

In addition to this, the Minutes of the Presbyterian Gen- 
eral Assembly, for 1832, which document is also before me, 
in speaking of the prosperity of the national societies, the 
American Sunday School Union among the rest, says »''ouk 
benevolent societies ! ! " Lastly : It is a well known fact that 
the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church, as well 
as its Synods, Presbyteries, &c. have voted again and again to 
patronize the American Sunday School Union; and by this 
act, as well also as their language on those occasions, they 
have recognized it as their Union. So have various congre- 
gational ecclesiastical bodies, as well as other Calvinistic 
churches. But alas ! no Arminian church has ever done this. 
Is there nothing in all this? The true question then is, 
whether the Calvinistic interest does not predominate in the 
Union; and whether many of its books are not strictly Cal- 
vinistic? Indeed many of its books have been furnished by 
Presbyterian clergymen; others as above stated, are light and 
fictitious; while I scruple not to say, that others are rare and 
choice little volumes. 

In an advertisement recently published by the Union, 
and which is circulating throughout the United States, and 
perhaps farther still, it is said, * 'that all the books published 
by the Union, have been examined and approved by the 
committee of publication, composed of an equal number of 
Baptist, Presbyterian, Methodist, and Episcopal churches," 
The impression given by this paragraph is, that the Sabbath 
School books published by the Union are sanctioned by all 
the denominations named above. But this impression is 
basely false: they are not sanctioned by these denominations 
— and the most that can be contended for is, that they are 
sanctioned by tivo irresponsible individuals belonging to 



OF PBESBITERIANISM. 37 

those churches. The imp^-ession given to the public has 
been from the beginning, that the objectionable features of 

Calvinism should not be advanced in the books published 

and that they never would be sanctioned by the committee. 
Still the truth is, that many of their books given into the 
hands of our unsuspecting children, are decidedly Calvinistic 
— enough so for the maturest mind; and where this boldness 
is not exhibited, still the impi'ession left upon the mind of 
the child, who reads, is the same, and his thoughts have, per- 
haps, a Calvinistic turn through life. 1 might select many 
instances in proof of this position, — but I will give but two 
and the first is from a little work called the "Two Arrows."^ 

"And now," added the father, "what are those sticks in your hands '" 
"Th^y are our arrows, f-ither," said the little boys— "w'e have broke 
our bows, and we have taken the weights out of the heads of our ar- 
rows, and we thoug-ht yoa would not be angrv at our cai'rying these little 
sticks." 

"Let me look at them," said the father: and he took them in his h?nd 

and then returned them to the children. " " 

"They are willow sticks," said Francis, "and quite dead and dry " 

"They seem to be dead," replied the father, "and good for nothine-'' 

and he du-ected his two little sons to lay them on the earth, in a retired 

place, near a brook, by which they were walking; so Jiis little bo^■s did 

as they were required to do, and the fither and his children walked on. 

About tliree months after this, when the winter was gone, and everv 

hedge and tali tree was clothed with leaves and blossoms, and every field 

was covered with fresh grass and springing corn, the father and liis son^ 

took another pleasant walk, and coming to the brook, to which a man wa- 

drivmg two cows to drink, the little boys remembered their sticks anc^ 

asked their father if they might see if they were where they had lefr 

them, "though Idare say," added Francis, "that they are all 'rotten and 

iallen to pieces by this time. " 

"Perhaps not," said the father, "for the time has been too short even 
for the driest stick to go to dust; but you may look for them, and let me 
know the state m which you find them." So the little boys beo-an to 
grope among the willow bushes which grew by the brook till theylbund 
the exact spot where they had laid their arrows; and when they found 1^ 
they cried "0! father, father, here are our sticks just where we lef- 
them, and one is green and fresh, and covered with a new rind, smooth 
and shming, and it has put forth leaves and little buds; but the other is 
dryland bare, and will soon fall to pieces. Come, father, come and 

The kind father came, and he looked at the two arrows, and one was 
indeed beconie a bloommg little tree, while the other was fast tendin^r to 
decay: and these were the remarks which he made, as he stood lookinr 

Jl^^J'^^t ^T'" ^^ ^^'^' "^^'^ '"^ ^^^ ^"?-er of God, and here iii thi. 
book of nature he makes known the mysteries of his providence. These 
iit^e branches, both of which appeared at one time dead and past hope! , 
are holy emblems of the two sorts of men: the dead branch is the type of 
the unregenerate man, him in whom there is no spiritual life, whose heart 
has remained unchanged, who has been /./^ i/his naturalVon uption^^ 



38 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

for such, nothing" is prepared but inevitable destruction; while the living' 
branch is the type of the true christian, of lilm who has received a neW 
nature and a clean heart, and in whom dwelleth the root of immortal 
life. 

**No difference, appeared in these little sticks when you laid them down 
in this place, and so for a while there often seems to be an exact simili- 
tude between the children of God and the children of the evil one. 
Both of these arrows were bare, and without loot or branch, and ap- 
peared to be cast away; and in like manner, those little children who 
have received a new nature, sometimes appear to be parted from Ckristf 
and without hope from the strength of sin. But there is life in them^ 
and they are again restored to holiness; they bud and blossom afresh, and 
'spring" up as among- the grass, as willows by the water brooks,' Isa. xliv, 
4 — while the wicked 'are cast out of their graves like an abominable 
branch,' " Isa. xiv, 19." 

I must therefore caution the members and friends of my 
church, ag;\inst purchasing these books, under the impression 
that they are all approved of by Methodists. No Methodist 
has sanctioned the doctrines above as evangelical, unless he 
has sacrificed his views to others. And none but milk and 
water Methodists would remain silent, and see such dogmas! 
pass the committee of publication. I have no doubt but 
what the American Sunday School Union is doing some good; 
bijit it is not by the false impressions to which it is giving 
currency, but by its industry in circulating truths, which 
with the blessing of God affect the heart; and herein I rejoice 
greatly; but my joy is nol Jitil, and will not be till the Union 
officially corrects these impressions. 

That the reader may see that I have not been hasty in m}^ 
judgment of the publications of the Union, 1 will add a 
paragraph from a w-ork, called "The Shepherd and his Flock.'^ 
The design of this volume is to teach the doctrine that God^s 
<'elect" cannot finally fall so as to perish everlastingly. The 
frontispiece teaches this. It represents the way to heaven 
by a "narrow iron rail way" within which '*The Shepherd 
and his Flock" walk. On the left are a number of "swine," 
representing the "children of this world," which in distinc- 
tion from <'his elect" are ^'reprobates. See page 28. On 
the right are "The Man in Black," and his "dogs," repre- 
senting the "devil" and the "persecutors of the saints," who 
dart out furiously at the "flock, or "his elect," "but from the 
height and closeness of the rails, it seems impossible for them 
really to injure the sheep!" See also page 28. Reader, im- 
partial reader, is there no Calvinism here? Are not the 
doctrines of election and reprobation, and of the final per- 
i. severance of the saints all taught here? Not content to 
' fjrint or write, the doctrines of Calvinism, they have repre- 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 39 

sented it on plates, to make if possible, a more lasting 
impression upon the mind of the child. But now comes the 
extract: — 

*'The dogs represent the perskcutous of the saiitts, who, like their 
master, hate and oppose them because of their excellence. These 
characters were once to be found only amon^ idolaters, Mahometans, 
Jews, and Papists; but now they also exist among- those who call them- 
selves Protestants." *'I admire the justness of this representation," 
said Master Thoug-htful, "for in their nature, these persons and dogs are 
equally unclean; and in their attacks equally cruel and cowardly. But 
from the height and closeness of the rails, it seems impossible for them 
really to injure the sheep." *«That is indeed the case," replied his friend; 
*'and the Lord lias so surrounded his elect with his power, that none can 
harm them while pursuing that which is good. And whenever they are 
terrified, he bids them look to him for protection, saying, 'Fear not, for 
I am with thee; be not dismayed, for I am thy God; I will help thee, yea 
r will uphold thee with the right hand o*f my righteousness.' And 
though heathens and papists have slain thousands of them, because of 
their love to religion, they have not destroyed one. No; their spirits are 
rejoicing in heaven, and their dust sleeps safely in the earth, waiting the 
bright morning of the resurrection." 

In addition to the above, I could show, if it were necessary, 
that in two or more of the books of the Union, the doctrine 
o^ christian perfection^ is set at nought; a doctrine too, highly 
esteemed by Methodists and Episcopalians, being as they 
believe, essential to salvation. 

But this is not all. The subject under consideration, be- 
comes awful and alarming, when viewed in connexion with 
the eternal destiny of our children, and the leading princi- 
ples of this Union!— principles not only essentially wrong, 
but practically dangerous. Any man, let his character and 
heart be good or bad, by the payment of three dollars, can 
become a member, and vote in the election of managers. 

The Arian— the Unitarian— the Unlversalist— the Roman 
Catholic— the Jews— the Mormonites; and those who deny 
the inspiration of the scriptures, or even the existence of a 
God, are equally privileged with those termed orthodox, to 
be represented in this institution. If any one doubt the 
correctness of this position, I say look at the constitution. 
It may, in all probability, be said, let Christians unite with 
the society to neutralize their influence. Such a thing ?5 
practicable. But it may also be said, after a while, let Pres- 
byterians unite with the society to neutralize the influence of 
Arminians: this being practicable also. 



iO HELPS TO THE STUDY 



CHAPTER V. 



Some among the many misrepresentations made bt 
the managers and agents of the american sunday 
school union. 

The constant practice of the American Sunday School 
Union, in saying, thdit 7nembers of the methodist denomina- 
tion are actively engaged in their board, lias been the cause 
of all the unpleasant collisions between the Union and the 
Methodist church. If this matter were adjusted as it mighty 
and ought to be, what peace and prosperity would attend the 
Sunday School cause throughout this land? There would be 
less jealousy and complaint; and there would be more emu- 
lation and action. But until this is done, I say to the Union,, 
so far as the Methodists are concerned, verily , your plans 
will meet with opposition. 

In a memorial, signed by the officers and managers of the 
Union, *<In answer to a remonstrance, presented to the 
legislature of Pennsylvania, against granting an act of 
Incorporation to the American Sunday School Union," there 
is the following paragraph: — "There are at present, con- 
nected with the society, the following religious denomina- 
tions: Episcopalians, Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterians^ 
the Associate Reformed, Lutherans, Congregationalists, 
German Reformed, Reformed Dutch, Friends, Moravians, 
Roman Catholics, and we believe others. No one denomi- 
nation HAS AN ascendancy, nor has any circumstance 
EVER occured in the history of the institution, in which 
there appeared a disposition on the part of either, to exert 
an undue influence over the rest. The undersigned are 
i>;ratified in being able to state, that they have never disco- 
vered any thing like denominational partiality , but on the 
contrary, a disposition has been manifested to an extraor- 
dinary degree, to merge all other names in that of Chris- 
tian.'' 

In an address, being a "defence of the American Sunday 
School Union,'' delivered by the Hon. William Hall, 
March 26, 1828; and, afterwards published by the Union, 
and extensively circulated, we iind the following sentence: — 

«We also find, that the society is composed oi Jive differ-- 
ent denominations of christians: Episcopalians, Metho- 
dists, Baptists, Congregationalists, and Presbyterians. Also^ 
Moravians, Lutherans, and other denominations," 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 41 

At a public meeting in Colunbi;i, S. C, held on the 3rd of 
April, 1831, it was stated by the Rev. R)bkrt Bai:id, 
S^eneral a^ent for the xlmerican Sunday School Uni )n, that 
the Methodist church was one in the grand U.iion;as will be 
Heen from the following extract of a letter, written by Dr. 
Capers, then stationed in Columbia, to the editor of the 
ChrisUan Advocate and Journal: — "I beg leave to enquire 
on what authority it can be asserted, before large congrega- 
tions, in South Carolina or elsewhere, that the Methoi'st 
church is one in the grand Union? I am well advise! that 
the general agent of the A. S. S. Union, quite lately, at 
Columbia, S. C, enumerated our church with thosi^. which 
areunited under that designation, to establish within a given 
time Sunday schools throughout the western country. Is 
this the result of his having employed perhaps hvc; or six 
Methodist ministers to lict as sub-agents in particular dis- 
tricts, with leave to form schools in connexion with either 
the American Sunday School Union or that of our o^va 
church.^ Is it possible that a private bargain by an unau- 
thorized individual can thus have been palmed on the public 
as if it were the act of the church? I hope not. I beg for 
information. The gentleman here alluded to will, I trust, 
explain the matter, for it requires explanation." 

How Mr Baird, could have mustered up sutficient audacity, 
to have acted thus, after the severe basting Dr. Bangs gave 
him in Pittsburg, Pa. in May, 1828, I am utterly at a loss to 
divine! No sooner had the General Conference of the 
Methodist Episcopal Church, convened in Pittsburg, than 
they were informed that this general agent of the American 
Sunday School Union was there, with a view to invite that 
body *'to express its approbation of the principles of that 
association, and to recommend to the ministers and members 
of the Methodist Episcopal Church, a free and friendly 
union^ in our endeavors to increase and extend the facilities 
of Sabbath school instruction," &c. Accordingly, a commu- 
nication was presented to the Conference by the general 
agent, containing the above, with many additional remarks; 
among others, showing the utility of the measure, from its 
tendency to prevent controversy, and that the Methodists 
should be greatly benefited by it, as they might obtain all 
their books from that union, and thus save themselves the 
expense and trouble of printing them ! ! 

From several circumstances which occurred in the General 
Conference, on that occasion, it was evident, to both Mr. 
Baird and a number of spectators, that there was a very 
d2. 



42 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

general feeling of surprise and indignation. And Dr. Bangs 
delivered a speech on the occasion, in the hearing of the 
general agent, which, it was thought, would last him all the 
daysof his life; but from his conduct in Columbia, three years 
after that, it really seems not to have had its desired effect. 

The year I travelled the Tellico circuit, 1831, two agents 
of the American Sunday School Union, the Rev. Messrs, 
White and Beecher, were travelling through almost every 
part of East Tennessee, singing every where, this same song 
of equally interested, &c. Such was the pamful state of 
things, within the bounds of my cirpuit, that I was under the 
disagreeable necessity of publishing them in my daily ap- 
pointments, to guard against the influence they were like to 
exert on the Methodist Sunday Schools. And in despite of 
all I could say and do, they did take some of my schools ia 
m}' absence, and make them auxiliary to the American Union. 
Finally, I took right after these men — discussed the points 
of difference between us and them publicly — afterwards 
published a pamphlet of 48 pages against them; — and by 
this means, I succeeded in chasing them off out of the Hiwas- 
see district. In the Presbyterian church in Tellico, or 
Madisonville, as it is now called, I heard Mr. White make 
the following statement to a large audience: "You are ap- 
prised, my friends, that there have been some unfortunate 
differences among the several denominations with regard to 
the American Sunday School Union; but I am happy to in- 
form you that these difficulties have been amicably adjusted, 
and that the Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterians, Episco- 
palians, &c. are all engaged in promoting the interests of the 
Union." He then proceeded to recommend the books of 
the Union, as both cheap and free from all seciarianisiny &c. 

The following certificates, taken from my pamphlet, will 
fully exhibit the conduct of Mr. Beecher: — 

"Whereas, the Rev. Messrs. Brownlow and Beecher, did, 
on the 17th of April, at the house of Mr. Stone, contend and 
debate publicly about Sunday schools; and whereas, Mr. 
Brownlow did aver and say, that tiie Methodist church had 
xio connection with the Americen Sunday School Union 
whatever; and inasmuch as Mr. Beecher arose and stated to 
the congregation that he could disprove Mr. Brownlovv's 
statements by members of the Methodist church, without 
applying to any other source; this is to certify, that we, the 
undersigned, did hear said Beecher read a letter, which he 
said was from "a respectable Methodist in Philadelphia,-' 
together with an extract which he said was from the Christian 



OV PRESBYTBRIANISM. 4S 

Advocate and Journal, edited by Dr. Bangs. We, moreorer 
certify, that Mr. Beecher did so read and comment on said 
letter and extract, and particularly the latter, as to malte it 
appear that the writers of them preferred the American Union 
to any other, and also recommended the same. Given under 
our hands, May 5th, 1831. JOHN KEY, 

CARTER TRIM, 
REUBEN STONE." 

"Whereas, Mr. Brownlow has called on us to give an 
account of the proceedings of Mr. Beecher, in organizing a 
Sunday school in our neighborhood, this is to certify, that 
we (the Methodists) have had a Sunday school in our school 
house for the last two years; and that said Beecher did preach 
a sermon and make a great many remarks, in all of which 
we understood him to teach that the Methodists, Baptists, 
Presbyterians, Episcopalians, &c. were equally interested in 
tlie American Sunday School Union. We, moreover certify,, 
that in view of these statements being correct, we consented 
to UNITE our schools, and two of our members are teachers. 
May 15, 1831. JOHN W. JOHNSTON, 

JAMES SMITH, 
NATHAN CARTER.'^ 

I have only to add, that at the house of Mr. Stone, we had 
ai Sunday school, and the family had told Mr. Beecher so 
the week before our debate. With regard to the six gentle- 
men whose names are attached to these certificates, three of 
them are local preachers, one a class- leader, and the other 
two, I believe, lay members of our church. 

But in addition to the information contained in the forego- 
ing certificates, Mr. Beecher, on the day of our controversy, 
stated that he had in his possession a letter from a very 
respectable Methodist, who was a Judge of the supreme 
court of the United States, and a Vice-President of the 
American Sunday School Union, and that this gentleman 
prefered the Union, &c. I demanded this letter, but he 
would not show it; and indeed subsequent circumstances have 
proven, that he had no such letter! That the honorable 
gentleman to whom he alludes, is a pious member of the 
Methodist Episcopal church, a patriotic statesman, an able 
jurist, an honest man, and a gentleman, is all true; but that he 
has any particular partialities for the American Union, is 
wholly untrue. I wrote to this gentleman on this subject, 
and requested him to say to me what were the facts in the 



tt HELPS TO THE STUDY 

case, so far asWe was concerned. He accordingly wrote me 
a very s-aisfactory letter, dated Frankfort, Kentucky, 13th 
May, 18.n, in which, by the bye, he says the officers of this 
institution, elected himself and one or two other members 
of the supr8;ne court, to the office of Vice P'-esident, with- 
ouf tlieir knowledge or consent: and that the corresponding^ 
secretary, had invited him to attend the annual meeting in 
Philadelpiiia that sprincr, but that lie did nc^ts^o. 

In September, 1831, I vvrote to Dr. Ely, of Philadelphia, 
and requested him to give me sotne information on certain 
points connected with the national societies in general, and 
that of the A. S. S. Union in particular; though I confess, I 
then believed, and still believe, I vv.is as well informed on 
those points is the Doctor was himself. My reason for ad- 
dres.sing him on this subject, was, that a writer in the *'Hi- 
wassean and x\thens Gazette," a little political paper under 
the control of the Hopkinsians, had said, that if any person 
desired information on those points, among many other great 
men whom ho named, let the individual write to Djctor Ely. 
Now, the Hopkinsians, from first to last, have brought as 
many "railing accusations" against me for writing this letter, 
and have made as much noise about it, as the devil did about 
the body of Moses! They admit that I gave my proper 
signature; but they charge me with taking the Doctor in, by 
making an impression on his mind that / ivus a Presbyte- 
rian! But does this justify him in turn, in attempting to 
make a false impression upon my mind? 

The following is an extract from my letter: — ■ 

<<A Methodist preacher in this vicinity, has recently 
published a pamphlet, in which he has opposed the BibJQ, 
Tract, and Sunday School Societies; and has made ma^ny quo- 
tations iVom your writings, and represented you, as wishing 
an establishment by law. Please write to me, and let me 
know in your letter, what relation the different denominations 
sustain to these soc'eties, and especially the American Sun- 
day School Union." 

The following is an extract from the Doctor's lengthy 
reply to the above: — 

^'Philadelphia, Oct. 14, 1831. 

Dear Sir — The managers and otBcers of the American 
Sunday School Union are in nearly equal portions members 
of the Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist, and Episcopal 
churches. The publishing committee consists of e/ght mem- 
bers; of whom two are Baptists, two Episcopalians, two 
Presbyterians, two Methodists; and nothing ispublished by 



or PRESBYTERIANI8M. 45 

the Union which does not meet their unanimous approba- 
tion! 

At every anniversary meeting of the Union, persons of 
the Congregational, Methodist, Episcopal, Baptist and Pres- 
byterian denon:inations have taken part in the public exer- 
cises, and have strongly recommended the institution to the 
patronage of the public. True it is, that some of the Metho- 
dists have a Sunday School Union of their own; and should 
this union choose to send their annual report to the A. S. S. 
Union, they would have all the privileges of the largest con ^ 
tributors, without contributing a ceiit, or changing one of 
their regulations/' 

Now the Doctor, by saying ^^some^^ of the Methodists 
have a union of their own, would evidently impress my mind 
with the belief, that the great body of the Methodists go for 
the American Union. 

And by saying ^'nothing is published by the Union that 
does not meet" the unanimous approbation of the four de- 
nominations he names, he would evidently induce me to 
believe, that the books of the American Sunday School 
Union are as heartily approved by the Methodist Episcopal 
ehurch, as by the Presbyterian church. Not any of this is 
true, absolutely and unequivocally not true; and I should 
suppose that the Doctor himself would know that such infer- 
ences are incorrect. 

But so late as 1834, it will be seen, by perusing the follow- 
ing extract of a letter from the Rev. E. W. Daughty, of 
Augusta, Ga., to the editors of the Christian Advocate and 
Journal, bearing date March ISth, that the agents of the 
American Sunday School Union, are still, like the Jesuits of 
China and France, driving through the continent with a zeal 
and ambition that know no termination but success; carrymg 
with them as usual, a mixture of light and darkness, truth and 
falsehood. Behold the extract! — "Three of their agents, 
the Rev. Mr Baird, of the Presbyterian church ; the Rev. 
Mr. Welch, of the Baptist church; and the Rev. Mr. 
Shepherd, of the Methodist Episcopal church, at a public 
meeting of the citizens of this place very recently, have con- 
tributed much to confirm the public mind in the impression 
that the M. E. church has an equal interest with the Presby- 
terians, and all others in the American Union; although all 
who read the Advocate will discover, especially in some late 
numbers, that this is not the fact; though i^w comparatively, 
out of the church, and not all in it see your paper They 



40 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

asked the public, and obtained over ^700 to carry on the 
operations of the American Union in Georgia — one of their 
objects being to fix a depository in this city for their books.'' 

This Mr. Shepherd, who has been an agent for several 
years, for this institution, is in reality a local preacher in the 
Methodist church; and when at home resides in Nashville, 
Tennessee. But, it is sufficient to say explicitly, that if all 
the ngents of the A. S. S. Union were Methodist preachers, 
it would not alter the case. In this matter, they do not 
represent our church: and those of them who are agents 
know it^ though they have not the honesty to apprise the 
public of the fact. And when they say or do any thing which 
has a tendency to make an iTupj^ession^ that the Methodist 
Episcopal church has any part or lot in the operations of the 
American Sunday School Union, they misrepresent facts, 
and deceive the people — and of course they do it wilfully^ 
Yes, they, with all others who act thus, agents, managers, 
and officers, are guilty ol misrepresentation and deception. 
For, ^'"misrepresentation,''^ says Noah Webster, is, '*a false 
or incorrect account given either from mistake, carelessness^ 
or 772«/?ce"— and I add, design. 

Webster's definition of the word deception, is, among 
many other things; '*Any declaration, artifice or practice 
-which misleads another." Such 6/ec/ar«//o?i,s for instance, 
as those, by which these three gentlemen Tnislead the minds 
of the good people of Augusta. And let such ''declarations'' 
as those quoted in the foregoing extracts, come from whom 
they may, I answer them as follows: 

"Hig-hland or Lowland— Prince or Peer; 
Lord Ang-us — thou hast lied." 

And now reader, in confirmation of what I have stated 
above, I will here subjoin two extracts from the report of the 
General Conference of the .VJethodist Episcopal church, held 
in Philadelphia, in May 1832; and having been a member of 
that body myself, I know that the report, from which I make 
these extracts, speaks the sentiments of that body, and that 
it was adopted by a unanimous vote. That cont^erence was 
eomposed of about two hundred and thirty ministers, some 
from every state in the Union, and constitutes the highest 
ecclesiastical court in our church. Hear what they officially 
say: 

*'For these and other reasons, especially that we consider 
NATIONAL religious societies incompatible with the safety of 
our FREE institutions, both civil and religious, we have long 
been known as in opposition to them.'' 



OT PRESBYTERIANISM. 47 

Again: ^'Resolved/* &c. <«As the sense of this General 
Conference, that it is inexpedient for any of our preach- 
ers, TRAVELLING OR LOCAL, TO ENGAGE AS AN AGENT IN 
BEHALF OF ANY INSTITUTION NOT CONNECTED WITH OUR 

CHUitcii, with the exception of the colonization society. '^^ 

And to show my readers that all is not as the manngers, 
officeis, and agents of the American Sunday School Union 
would have us su})|30se, I present ihem wiih tl e following 
panigraph from the "World," a respectable Baptist paper 
published in Philadelphia: — 

"'['he question is not whether the American Sunday School 
Union has been the instrument of doins^ good or not: but 
whether thp Baptist denomination will rest satisfied wiih the 
gooti the Union is accomplishing. Is the Baptist denomina- 
tion willing to make the A. S. S. Union the depository of its 
interests? We answer, NO. It would he worse than folly 
and infatuation for them to do so. The American Union 
never has, and never can, fill the place we should wish a 
Baptist Sunday School Union to occupy. Does our brother 
X. object to this, or is he wWYw^^^ihwionr peruliar doctrines 
should be laid on the shelf to be covered with dust, and be 
forgotten? If he is, he has only to consijin them over to the 
■American Sunday School Union, whose very organization 
prevents it from meddling with them, and his object will be 
accomplished." 

I ask particular attention to the above; and particular!}^ on 
the part of the Baptists, should this work fall into their 
hands, as I trust it will. On my way douMi from the seat of 
government in New Jersey, to Philadelphia, on board of a 
steam bo:i% in the Delawi.re river, in the spring of IS32,I 
recollect to have conversed freely and fully, with a highly' 
respectable Baptist minister on the subject of the national 
societies, who was then a resident of the last named city; and 
he remarked to me, that he was then, and had been for some 
time, laboiing to convince his brethren of the dangerous 
tendency of those societies. 

Lft the following extract from the "Chi-istian Intelligen- 
cer," of July, 1833, a Duch Reformed paper of the city of 
New York, be carefully read; and it will show clearly, the 
light in which that church regards the American Union, and 
its agents. The extract is taken from an article in which ''an 
-agent of the S. S. Union," is charged with access to one of 
their churches, in which he tau^^jit false doctrines. The 
article advi-es to resist these agents!! Hear it!! »'At]eastj 
if notwithstanding all our watchfulness, it should happen, 



4,8 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

that one of these time-serving agents should creep in una- 
wares, Jude 4, <privily to bring in damnable heresies' among 
us, Peter ii, 1, we would at once demonstrate his false teach- 
ing, and then caution the congregation neither to receive him 
into their houses, nor bid him God speed. We trust our 
worthy brother will so act at P. And we hope all our 
CHURCHES will be upon their guard against these agents, un- 
less their design, principles and objects are well known and 
decisively approved. For our part, we have determined no 
longer to encourage some of the crafty and irresponsible 
AGENTS, whose grand, if not sole, object is this — to procure 
a good temporary income, and the opportunity to select a 
choice place of settlement. Beware of them!" 

May Heaven smile upon the editor of the Intelligencer! 
for, verily, he is in the faith. Truly he has said multum in 
parvo. From the annual report of the American Union, by 
PAUL BECK, treasurer, "from March 1st, 1831, to March 1st, 
1832," it will be seen that the whole amount of expenditures 
for the society for that year is, seventy-seven thousand, 

FOUR HUNDRED AND FIFTY-FOUR DOLLARS AND EIGHTY-SIX 

€ENTs!!! Of this sum, twenty-thousand and six hun- 
dred DOLLARS, went to pay "missionaries, agents, and inci- 
dental expenses" in the valley of the Mississippi!! And 

six thousand, four hundred and forty EIGHT DOLLARS, 

went to pay the salaries of officers, agents, &c. And the 
above is a fair specimen of the expenditures of every year, 
otherwise than that they continually increase; so that upon 
the whole, this Dutch Reformed editor, is justifiable in say- 
ing, the "sole object" of these < 'time-serving agents" is, ''to 
procure a good temporary income." 



CHAPTER VI. 

CORRESPONDENCE BETWEEN BISHOP OTEY OF THE PROTES- 
TANT EPISCOPAL CHURCH, AND THE REV. MR. SHEPHERD, 
AGENT OF THE AMERICAN SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION. 

''To the Editors of the W. W. RevieuK 
Gintlimen: In your paper issued June 29, I perceive under the edi- 
torial head, a notice of the Sunday School celebration, which was heiJ 
the preceding Lord's day at the Methodist church. Considerable misap- 
prehension prevails as to the objects and purposes of" that meeting-. It 
ought to have been stated, gentlemen, that the main design of the pro- 
jectors of the celebration, was to further exclusively the objects of an 
institution, styled the American Sunday School Union. For aught that 



OFPRESBYTERIAXISM. ^ 

.ijppeavs to the contrary in your notice, the public might be led to suppose 
that all the Sunday Schools at this place, and in this county were in- 
terested in the proceedings of the meeting referred to, and would be 
benefitted by the liberality which the public displayed on that occasion. 
Under this impression contributions were made. This is the idea which 
perhaps yet prevails extensively through this community. It is alto- 
g-ether a mistaken one, and ought to be corrected. The Simday schools 
under the management of the Methodist and Episcopal churches have no 
connection in any way that I can learn with the A. S. S. Union; and of 
course derive no benefit from' collections of money made to further its 
^operations. 

It may be proper to state here that this insti/ution, the A, S. S. Union 
professedly contemplates a union of the variais denominations of Chris- 
tians in the U. States. I shall not stop here to discuss the question whicfi 
might very properly be raised, whether sucb a union is possible, without 
destroying Christianity itself, or at least some of its essential features as a 
system ot revealed truth, but shall simply state the fact, that both the Epis- 
•copal and Methodist denominations disclaim all part or lot in the matter of 
the A. S. S U. The Baptists have in some instances recommended this 
iostitiltion to the patronage of their brethren. The Presbyterians have 
oiRcially by their church councils and otherv^^ise, contributed all in their 
power to extend its influence, and all the Sunday schools under the 
iliansg:ment of the ministers and congregations of that denomination, are 
I believe, without a single exception, auxiliary to the A. S. S. Union. 
We have nothing to say against this; — if the Presbyterians a/id Baptist? 
think that in this way they can bt-st promote the cause of S. School edu- 
cation, let them go on and expend their strength and treasure to effect 
an end which we also have at heart, and which we are striving to f"rthei' 
in our own way, and upon principles which we conscientiously believe to 
be better. But in the name of all that is honest and fair and reasonable, 
let it be understood, that this difference in plans and views and measures 
does really exist, and let not the people be gulled by the specious pre- 
tence of a name, to lend their aid and give their money to, they know not 
what. 

I may hereafter have occasion to say more of the A. S. S. Union; the 
principles by which it is held together; the nature and tendency of its 
publications, &c. . at present I wish to call your attention to the late pro- 
ceedings in this town. 

The agent, (Mr. Shepherd,) at the late anniversary, endeavored to im- 
press it upon the public mind that the A. S. S. Union received the hearty 
concurrence and support of all the different denominations in this coun- 
try—that the Presbyterian, Baptist, Methodist and Episcopal churches 
were all united in furtherance of its plans and objects. Under the per- 
suasion that such was the fact, two gentlemen highly respected for char- 
acter, talents, and influence in the community, were induced to address 
the meeting on the 24th ult., in order to stimulate the people present to 
make a liberal contribution. Now, gentlemen, I can assure you, and F 
do assert, without fear of contradiction, that neither the Methodist nor 
Episcopal churches have any thing at all to do with the A. S. 8. Union 
They have no voice in its management — no control over its publications- 
desire no benefit from its operations, and are connected with k in no way 
whatever. Did not the agent know this' If ignorant of the fact, how 
cmxld he presume to deliver before an intelligent assembly a discourse, 
the whole tendency of which was to produce and fix the impression, 
that the institution of which he was the accredited agent, received the 
support of both the Episcopal and Methodist denominations? If on the 
E 



60 HEXPS TO THE STUDY 

contrary, Mr S was acquainted with the fact that these respectable bodie* 
of people, disclaimed all connection with the union of which he was the 
public advocate — that they had discl^med it repeatedly, publicly and 
officially, (as they have done in the publications under their control, and 
directly or indirectly by the voice of their respective ecclesiastical coun- 
cils,) he will find some diflUculty, to say the least, in reconciling the 
statements upon which he has publicly ventured, with that integrity of 
character which attached to the high and holy ofiice, under the sacred 
responsibility of which he professes to act. For to justify the sentiments 
and language which he uttered on that occasion, it is not sufficient to 
show that a Methodist or Episcopalian is to be found here and there, pro- 
moting the interests of the A. S. S. Union. The impression evidently 
designed to be made — the impression which undoubtedly was made upon 
the minds of those not preriously informed upon this subject was, that 
Methodists and Episcopalians collectively, as denominations of christians, 
are lending their efforts and influence to forward the objects and views of 
the A. S. S. Union. So far fi-ora this being true, both these denomina- 
tions have respectively their own Sunday School Unions, — have presses 
in operation for the publication of such works as they deem suitable, and 
have depositories established in various parts of the country. The books. 
Sec. at these depositories are sold at a price which barely defrays the 
expense of paper and printing. It may be further stated that they are not 
at the expense of employing agents to traverse the towns, cities, and vil- 
lages of the U. States, to make collections of money; a considerable por- 
tion of which must necessarily, be diverted from its generally supposed 
destination, to defray the expenses of travelling, the salaries of agents, 
&.C. Large sums of money are undoubtedly collected from the people of 
this country, with the avowed object of furnishing books, &c.to Sunday 
schools, when from the published reports of the A. S. S. Union, it is cer- 
tain that very considerable amounts are annually appropriated to pay the 
salaries of editors, secretaries, agents, he. &c. 

To the testimony upon this subject, see 3d report, A. S. S. U. 
Cash paid salary Cor. Sec. Editor and Assistant Editor nearly 12 
months, |1045 20 

Do. do. Gen. Agent, 9 m. 750 00 

Do. Travelling expenses Gen. Agent, 126 45 

Do. Salary late Agent, 5 m. 260 67 

*' " Clerk to Cor. Sec. nearly 13 m. 189 00 * 

" '* Book-keeper 7 m. 1 week, 155 76 

These are a few items of a list which five or six years ago swelled the 
expenses of the A. S. S. Union to the sum of $27,753 73!! Consider- 
ing the exertions which have been made since that time to extend the 
operations of the above named establishment, we may fairly estimate its 
present annual expenditures at something like 75 or 80 thousand dollars. 
I wish Messrs. Editors you would enquire for, and get the last annual 
report, for I think it more than likely that the estimate I have suggested 
is too small. I have now lying before me the 5th anniversary report of 
theProt. Ep. S. S. Union. From an examination of the treasurer's report, 
I am unable to find that a single dollar has been paid away in salaries for 
editors, agents, &c. Nearly every single expense incurred is on account 
of printing, sales; purchases of Sunday School Books and stereotyping. 
The amount of money necessary to purchase all the requisite books 
for a Sunday School is very small. The Episcopal Sunday School at this 
place has been in operation some four or five years. The sum total rais- 
ed to purchase books by public contribution does not exceed fifteen dol- 
lars, in all that time. And I am of the opinion that with the amount 



or PRESB YTERIASriSM. 61 

raised on tlie 24th ult. lean purchase books sufficient for the purposes 
of every Sunday School for two years to come, that is already in exist- 
ence, or can be established in Williamson county. 

The expenditures noted above in the report of the American Sunday 
School Union are doubtless necessary for such an institution. Its extend- 
ed operations could not be carried on without a large amount of money. 
But this does not show that the principles on which that institution is 
founded, are right — nor the measures adopted for its management expe- 
dient — nor yet does it furnish the shadow of a reason why the people 
here should contribute to it their money, to support its agents, and oth- 
er officers, when they can purchase books on as good or better terms from 
other institutions within their reach. The agents of the American Sun- 
day School Union pass through the country and actually speak and act as 
though all the Sunday Schools wherever they came, were under their con- 
trol or management, and must assemble at their bidding and listen to all 
the farrago they may think proper to deal out. Against ^uch doings, and 
as we conceive misdoings, we enter our solemn protest before a candid 
and enlightened public. Thousands of dollars have been raised in the 
Atlantic States, if the public prints speak truly, and placed at the dispo- 
sal of the A. S. S. Union, for the special purpose of establishing Sun- 
day Schools in the valley of the Mississippi: and yet the people all thro'' 
this region almost in hearing of the roar of its waves, have their ears 
stunned continually by cries of money, money, from the agents of this 
Union. Instead of going out into the hills and vallies, they come to the 
towns where schools have been established for years, — 'where are com- 
monly to be found two or three Ministers of the gospel actively engaged 
in imparting Sunday School instruction, and here they put forth their ef- 
forts to enlighten the whole valley of the Mississippi. 

I have but a remark or two more to make. I am told that 85 or 86 
dollars were collected on the 24th ult. It was understood, and perhaps 
stated that whatever money was contributed would be returned in books. 
Now do the people here know how this return is to be made? I think I 
can inform them; and if I am wrong in my understanding of the matter, 
I shall be glad to be corrected. A depository of the A. S. S. Union will 
be established at Franklin, in which will be constantly kept a supply of 
books equal to the amount subscribed by the people of this place. But 
iione of the books in the depository can be used by the S. School of 
this county until purchased; they do not form a library for public use, 
neither are they gratuitously distributed. The people of this place then, 
pay from 80 to a 100 dollars for the privilege of having- a depository of 
the A. S. S. Union established here, at which they may buy books at 
cost. I ask any reftecting man, where is the great advantage of forward- 
ing the plans of this Union' By establishing the depository, the public 
will in effect pay nearly double what the books would cost, if purchased 
at other depositories in the county. But from the statements made on 
the 24th ult., a large majorit/, perhaps of those present, expected that 
whatever was contributed on that occasion, would be returned in books, 
to be apportioned out when called for, gratuitously, to the different Sun- 
day Schools in Williamson county . 

In conclusion permit me to say, that I regret the necessity under which 
I feel myself placed, of making the foregoing statements. But acting 
from a sense of duty to the people who attend my ministration — to the 
cause of Sunday School instruction generally — to the church of God, 
and realizing the obligations under which the kind offices of the inhabit- 
ftftts of this place have laid me, I have not shunned the responsibility of 



52 HELPSTOTHESTUDT 

making an exposure which the eircumstances of the ease lomdly demand- 
ed. Very Respectfully, yours, &c. 

Jas. H. Otet. 
Frankhn, July 9, 1832. 

"The truth, the whole truth, and nothing hut the truth.'* 
*'To the Editors of the W. TV. Review. 

Gektlkmen: In your paper of the 13th July, I perceive some stric- 
tures on our late x\nniversary held in the Methodist church in Franklin,, 
by the Rev. Mr. Otey. It is with extreme reluctance I now appear be- 
fore the public, nor would I, only that truth, the improvement of the ri- 
sing generation, and public feeling and sentiment, imperiously call for it. 
Morever he has misrepresented the case. 

Mr. Otey first says it was my design to further exclusively, the objects 
of the A. S. S. Union, by which he means the Sunday Schools, attached 
to that Union. Now, if he will permit me to understand and express 
my own designs, I say his statementis not true. It was my design to ben- 
efit all schools in the county alike, of whatever name, or to wiiomsoever 
they may belong, — and all may derive equal benefits if they will, Mr. 
Otey*s not excepted. Let me here add, it is an express injunction in my 
commission to organize Sunday Schools auxiliary to the Methodist church, 
to ]^r. Otey's church, or to any other, and give them a donation also, if 
necessary. I appeal to an enlightened public, is this not generous, lib- 
eral, and equitable as could be desired? The misfortune with him was^ 
that he began to censiu-e, blame, and condemn, in relation to a subject 
he did not understand. 

The second point he touches is, that this institution contemplates a. 
union of the various denominations of christians; it contemplates a union 
of effort, and that optional, but no sacrifice of religious sentiment, 
usa.sce, or doctrine, by any church. If he will only embrace the subject 
in all its magnitude, he will see nothing less wnll effect the object. There 
are now tliree million one hundred and fifty thousand children eligible 
for Sunday Schools in the United States. Now, let me ask the best cal- 
culator, could any or all the churches separately, at the present ratio, 
ever accomplish this great work? Never, never. Must this vast ipass of ' 
immortal souls lie neglected, while habits are confirming, intellect'devel- 
oping. character taking a settled and determined form, until Mr. (j). who 
has but one school in this county comes forward to do this great work.^ 
The increase of population was greatly exceeding the in-gathering of 
the children, until the existence of the A. S. S. Union. But Mr. O. 
should know that no church as a church, is united with this union; yet 
some from all, voluntarily, come forward and help in diffusing light, ele~ 
rating character, and act upon this heaven-invented plan. 

In the third place he mtroduces my name, and says I made the impres- 
sion on the public mind that the Methodist, Baptist, and Epi.scopalian 
churches were all united in the 4. S. S. Union. This is the substance of 
the foregoing article. I never said so, I never thought so, because I knew 
• St to be otherwnse. I genernlly bring the Methodist and Episcopal unions 
into view, to shew what is doing in the United States. Methodists, Bap- 
tists, Presbyterians, and Episcopalians are all friendly to Sunday Schools, 
but have d fferent views in relation to the same object. With regard to 
thetwo gentlemen who addressed the meeting, they Avere not deceived; 
they consider his publication uncalled for, they did not authorize it, thev 
are'friends to the A. S. S. Union, and universal improvement of our com- 
mon nature. Society I am sure, will give this its proper weight. Be- 
hold an Israelite indeed, in whom there is no guile I 



or PRESB YTERIAN IS M. 53 

In the next place Mr. Otey see^ns to aaJjrvalne every oa? uroujul him; 
tHe two speakers, die citizens of Franklin, ilie county of Willia,Hion, and 
tJie Methodist clmrchi only for h:m tiiey would l)e led astray. I woald 
ask Mr. O. did the speakers complain to him that [ deceived tnein' did 
the citizens of Frankhn. the subicr.bers, and the Methodist ciujrcii ask 
him to become their guardian, and take tlie.n un ler nis care"* I ansv/er 
no. The Methodist and Presbyterian churc;ic;s dont want Mr, O's. uiter- 
ference. They both, as churches, disapprove of his conduct in this in- 
stance. If tins be true, as I am prepared to prove, w.iat becomes of his 
veracity in the closing article, where he says he acts witii regret, and un- 
der a sense of duty in relation to Sunday Schools, and also to the Citizens 
of Franklin— ill effect, saymg they desired it. I unlies.tatingly say, that 
in politics this deception would rum the most Wily politician m tiie din of 
electioneering strife. 

But Mr. O. states that a part of the money raised goes to pay agents' 
salaries; this is unfounded. I never received a cent from Williamson coun- 
ty, nor of any money raised for county depositories. In proof, I refer to 
Mr. Bowls, Murfreesborough; Mr. Atkin, Siielbyville; Mr. Riiea, Colum- 
bia; Mr. Maney, Franklin; Mr. Topp, Lebanon; the treasurers in their 
respective counties; not one dollar is diverted from its spec. fie object. 

Mr. O. complains of his schools and depositories being overlooked. I 
know of no depositories in the state but those attached to the A. S. S. U. 
I have travelled the state, and I know of but tliree schools that belong to 
his union. As to our books costing the school double, as he states, they 
>yill be sold as low as any other. I now call upon M,-. O ey to sustain by 
proof his false statements. How could they be any other? He wrote 
from a conversation he heard on the street as he acknowledges. 

I shall now give an explanation of the mysterious conduct of the Rer. 
Gentleman, and then close with a delineation of this wonderful man as he 
stands before the public. 

^ In company with a mutual friend I waited on Mr. Otev, and requested 
him to preach the anniversary sermon; his reply was, he felt opposed to 
tke A. S. S. U., but coolly and explicitly declared he would not g.ve it 
any opposition, either in public or private. It would have been well for 
him if he had kept his promise. He stated that there is Calvmlsm in the 
books of the Union. I rested all the clams of the insiitut on on this 
pomt, and requested him to show it: he has not done so. 

In order to conciliate, I told him his doctrines, and ours were nearly 
alike, and that Mr Wesley would not have W;thdrawn from the Cluirch of 
England only on account of the ack lowledged v,c;ouiii^si of the 
lives of the clergy of that church. He denied that t!)e vie ousness of the 
lives of the clergy invahdated their ordination. Tnis astonished mil 
Coming from Mr. Otey, it is a very unsafe sentiment in civil society. Tins 
is the very foundation of popery,— it m ght do at Ro ne, or at tiie licen- 
tious court of Charles the H, but cannot do in the mer.dian of Franklin, 
or Nashville. He Infomicd me that if I could shew vice in the lives of 
the mimsters, they would be turned out. D.dyou ever know any turned 
out, said I, on this ground? Hundreds, said he. I confess I did not give 
credit to his assertion; the evil is not so extensive. I took it as the state- 
ment of bigotry, rash and indiscriminate, wh cli would even sink the min- 
isters to raise the church. I looked at him in the rage of his wrath Lke 
a wounded horse in battle, which is to be feared in the ranks of friends 
or enemies. He became quite unmeasured in dealing oat the epithets of 
enthusiast, fanatic, upon the religion of some who had sights, visions, and 
dreams, and gave the whole an application to the venerable Wesley* and 
kis followers. Then drew from his case McGee on the atonement, 

e2 



54 HELFS TO THE STUDY 

turned to the page where he exhibited Wesley in this light. All this 
was as much candor as I expected, but certainly less politeness. This b 
a g-ame the Church of Eng-land has been playing for many years in order 
to draw, if possible, the Methodists back to her bosom. 

Southy wrote the life of Wesley for this very end: he altered the beau- 
tiful proportions of his character, and tried to unsettle the adjustment of 
those springs that formed and moved it. Still he could not conceal his 
excellence without subjecting himself to ridicule. The serene rays of 
the diamond shines through the interposing incrustations, almost too much 
for humanity. 

Mr. Southy is the poet laureate, he has £300 sterling per annum, and 
a butt of sack or wine for writing a birth-day ode for the king. This 
same McGee wrote his work on the atonement in which he tries to 
represent Wesley in the light so much admired by Mr. Otey. He sent a 
copy of the work to the Queen of England, she had him appointed to a 
lining in the city of Dublin, in Ireland, worth I believe, |30,000 sterling 
a year. Mr. Otey is the mere echo of the former two, but he congratu- 
lates himself like the fly on the chariot wheel. — O dear what a dust I 
raise. Wesley burned with a deep, yet calm love of moral grandeur and 
celestial purity. "He was a lion, an old lion who dare rouse him up, but 
when provoked he sprang from his lair, shook the dew from his mane^. 
and swept the groaning forest." 

"Pygmies are pygmies, still the' perched on Alps, 
And pyramids, are pyramids, although in vales." 

On the day referred to, we held the anniversary of the Williamson 
county Union. Mr. Otey calls it the celebration of Sunday Schools. I 
am surprised that he would form such a member of a sentence as this. 
He certainly ought to know the structure and genius of the English lan- 
guage better. However, as he says, the meeting was large, embracing 
wealth, intelligence, and respectability; that it was so large, and his so 
small, with the Bishop of North Carolina, officiating at the same hour, is 
said to be one item in the sum of provocation. "The toe of the peasant 
comes so near the heel of the courtier, that he galls his kibe." 

Now for Mr. Otey's. exposure, as he calls it., Andkt me ask what has 
he exposed? Nothing but himself. He exhibits as new, old, dry ^-ecords, 
which the A. S. S. Union had published years ago. Let me here remark 
that he is what is called high Church of England, and pretended to a 
divine right of ordination. This is all popery asks to establish her sys- 
tem. If Mr. Otey proves his divine right of ordination, I say all our 
institutions— our laws and constitution, the glory of our country— the ad- 
miration of the worjd, should all yield to the divinity of his claims and 
pretensions. I here in the face of the sun formallyj solemnly in the fear 
of God, enter my protest against his pretensions, to a divine right of 
ordination, as unscriptural and dangerous in its tendences. I call for the 
proof. 

I stated in my sermon when Henry the VIU. threw off the supremacy 
of the people, he became the head of the Church of England. 
"This is the head and front of my offending." 

Mr. Otey has not divulged this; for like the Spartan youth, and the fox, 
be conceals the cause of his misery. This is the cause of his trouble,because 
it interferes with his clsumto a divine right of ordination. Before I enter 
on the proof of the King of England, I will inform Mr. Otey that Episco- 
palians are divided into three classes, two of whom differ with him on 
divme right: that is 19 are against him where he has but one for him. I 
shall here give a list of the most distinguished ministers in his own church 
that are opposed to him. Cranmer, Grindal, Whitgift, Bishop Leighton, 



or PRESBTTBRIANI8M. 55 

Tillotson, Bishop Burnett, Bishop Croft, D. Stillingfleet, Bishop HalU 
Bishop Dawnham, Bishop Bancroft, Bishop Andrews, Arch Bishop Usher, 
Bishop Farbes, the learned Chillingworth, Arch Bishop Wake, Bishop 
Hoadly. Though these differ amongst themselves they are opposed to 
Mr. Oley's creed. See Dr. Miller's letters on the subject. 

He considers all out of his order of divine ordination as aliens from 
Christ, out of the appointed way to heaven, and have no hope but the 
uncovenanted mercy of God. 

He declared in Franklin he would suffer his hand to be chopped off 
before he could recognize any ministers as lawfully ordained but his 
party. I would say this amputation would disclose the nature of his 
spirit — not the soUdity of his argument. I also inform him if his intoler- 
ance does not proceed from a defect in his mind it will soon produce one. 

In conversation with a respectable gentleman in this county, he told 
him they had the keys of the kingdom. The document is now in my 
pocket to prove this. I am sure an enlightened public will give proper 
weight to liis proscriptions against us coming into any towns of the United 
States; b\itto keep on the hills and in the valleys, because forsooth Mr. 
Otey lives in Franklin, has a small Sunday School, and about twenty-five 
attached to his church. Were the people of the United States left to his 
agency, and the operation of his principles, they would soon become as 
cold and lifeless as the rocks that slumber on the bosom of the great val- 
ley we inhabit. 

The Pope of Rome would not have been more imperious. It seems as 
if Mr. Otey had his eye on the papal chair and the mitre. A divine right 
of ordination first. Infallibility is the next link in the chain. Then 
supremacy — afterwards the holy inquisition; and like the Albigenses and 
Waldenses we would not be permitted to have the mountains and valleys. 
An auto-de-fe would close the scene. 

When Mr. Otey and Bishop Ravenscroft came to Nashville, they ob- 
tained the Methodist church for service. At the commune our venci-able 
pastor, brother Gwin, went into the altar. Mr. Otey informed him it 
would be desirable if he would withdraw, and waited on him the next day 
to inform him he did not consider him an ordained minister. Will society 
iK)t look at this. 

I had said the King became the head of the Church of England when 
he threw off the authority of the people. Mr. Otey denies it. Now for 
the proof. 

I simply refer to Humes* history of England, Vol. 2, page 291. *'A 
confession was extracted from the clergy, that the king was the protector 
and supreme head of the church and clergy of England, so far as is per- 
mitted by the law of Christ.*' Again page 299, the Parliament being 
assembled, conferred on the king the title of the only supreme head on 
earth of the Church of England. These are the words . I also refer to 
Moshiem's church history. Vol. 3, page 18. Soon after this Henry was 
declared by the Parliament, and people, supreme head of the Church of 
England, and from the reign of Henry the VIII, down to the present 
day, the King and Parliament, appoint the Bishops. I now ask is the 
King not the head of the Church of England! Most assuredly he is. Then 
what becomes of the divine right of ordination. 

At a certain time, Mrs. Clark had unbounded influence over the Duke 
of York, for reasons, chastity would blu.sh to name. Many, very many, 
applied to her for livings in the Church of England. She received large 
sums of money; influenced the Duke, he had influence with the King, his 
fatheri and Parliament. Therefore, by this royal strumpet, like Cleo- 
)>atra, her elder sister, many were appointed to fat livings, produced by 



5G HELPS TO THE STUDY 

the hard earnings of the poor, in the church of Eng-land. Could we be 
so gross In folly; so stupid in nonsense, as to believe Mr. Otey and Bishop 
Ives, that there was a divine right here? According to the most philo- 
Hophical relation between cause and effect, where Mrs. Claik gave the 
first impulse. Is she not, therefore, at the head of this disgusting busi- 
ness' But I, in mercy to human nature, draw a veil over it. 

Mr. Otey is a graduate of Chapel Hill, I learn; he is a tolerable teacher; 
his enimiciation intolerably coarse. There is no exception to his moral 
character; he is a good citizen, but in the absence of all oratory, he is a 
very rugged speaker. I submit the correc'.ness of the sketch to a correct 
taste and a sound judgment. 

He ought not to have published when T was absent, in the upper coun- 
ties, for iie acknowledges no one complained to him. What, has he done 
nothing? for it is a law in heaven and earth, that nothing can produce 
Jiothmg, His effort, therefore, to extinguish the institution and injure 
me, is as idle a puff as the drone pipe of his organ, which occasioned a 
tax on the public of five hundred dollars. I write the above not as a 
genera! agent fcr Tennessee, for the A. S. S. Union, but on my own 
responsibility. They authorize no publications, but those which proceed 
from the publishing committee. I would recommend Mr. Otey to study 
(the fable of the viper and file, 

SiMPSox Shepherd, 

It will be very obvious to every one who will take the trou- 
ble to read the foregoing letters, that Mr. Shepherd, artfully 
endeavors to evade the whole subject properly at issue, by 
making personal reflections upon his opponent, and by rail- 
ing at the Church of England; and by saying much about 
divine ordination — divine right — divine appointment- 
divine institution and Episcopacy, old matters, about which, 
the Methodists and Episcopalians have differed for many 
years. 

This controversy, which in many respects, was of a very 
singular character, continued for a number of weeks together, 
through the medium of the Western Weekly Review, at 
Franklin, Tennessee. 

The controversy, it will be seen by the reader, originated 
m a public meeting called in that town by the Rev. Mr. 
Shepherd, as aa;ent for the American Sunday School Union, 
for the special benefit of that association and of the schiools 
connected with, and sustained by it. The Rev. Mr. Otey, 
then rector of the Episcopal church at Franklin, but now 
Bishop for the diocess of Tennessee, believing that an erro- 
neous impression had, on that occasion, been made on the 
public mind, in relation to the character of the Institution, 
and the relation which other denominations of Christians 
mistained to it, published the above article over his proper 
signature, declaring that the Institution referred to was 
essentially and exclusively Presbyterian, and disclaiming 



OF PRBSBYTERIANISM. S7 

any connexion with it, on the part of the Episcopal and 
Methodist churches. In this, Mr. Otey was substantially 
correct. To this communication, Mr. Shepherd replied in 
quite a tart and acrimonious manner. A rejoinder followed 
on the part of Mr. Otey, in which he replied with much 
asperity, and the controversy widened into quite an extensive 
field, embracing in its ran<i;e some of the most important 
topics of polemic theology, and relating; especially to the 
doctrines, government, and most prominent divines of the 
Methodist and Episcopal churches, both in Europe and 
America. In this discussion, many severe things were said 
of Messrs. Wesley and Asbury of the Methodist church, 
and of Bishops Ravenscroft and Ives, of the Episcopal 
church, all of whom, save the latter, were then dead, and in 
heaven, as I believe. In this, therefore, the gentlemen were 
both to blame, but Mr. Shepherd more especially, for having 
first lugged these topics into the discussion. Mr. Otey says, 
however, that in consequence of the extraordinary course 
pursued by Mr. Shepherd, the discussion took a range which 
he never expected. It is true, that Mr. Shepherd, in the 
foregoing letter, as well as in his sucf^eeding numbers, intro- 
duced a variety of topics wholly irrelevent to the question 
properly between them, some of which, Mr. Otey may have 
considered himself compelled to notice, in order to vindicate 
his character, as well as that of his church; but still, he should 
have abided by the old proverb, ^'contempt isthe best return 
for scurrility." But no circumstance whatever, could have 
justified Mr. Shepherd, in introducing all that heterogeneous 
mass of personal abuse, ai.d gr.ive charges, which charac- 
terized most of his letters. 

Finally, the Rev. Mr. Douglass, of the Methodist church, 
published a lengthy article in defence of Wesley and Asbury, 
to which the Rev. Mr. W^ellen rector of the Episcopal church 
in Nashville, replied with great asperity. This introduc- 
tion of new combatants, led to a still more extended discus- 
sion, until great excitement was produced throughout Middle 
Tennessee. Iperused the whole controversy, and with consider- 
able interest too, thv>ugh I disapprove of the turn it took. 
My reasons for not pubiishmg more of these letters are, first, 
the subject matter of them is irrelevent to my present pur- 
poses; and next, becauge they are too lengthy, filling from 
two to eleven columns in a large newspaper! In conclusion, 
permit me again, to put my veto on Mr. Shepherd's course, 
in that he, in the progress of this controversy, brought into 
view, other men and circumstances, with certificates, state- 



BS HELPS TO THE STUDY 

ments, answers, replies, &c. The fact is, Mr. Shepherd? 
dreaded an investigation of the principles ot the A. S. S. 
Union; and knowing as he did, the Methodists generally, 
disapproved of his conduct as an agent, and wished Mr. Otey 
success in exposing this, his beloved Union, he very artfully 
introduced a new and distinct subject, manifestly with a view 
to induce other Methodist preachers to engage in the contro- 
versy. As to Mr. Shepherd having made erroneous impres- 
sions, on the minds of the citizens of Franklin, on that 
particular occasion, it is as evident, as that light accompanies 
the rising of the sun. Whether he designed to make such 
impressions or not, I leave the reader, in the exercise of that 
charity which "hopeth all things," and which "suffereth 
long, and is kind," to determine. One thing, however, I 
do know, that during the sanne year, Mr. Shepherd, did, m 
Athens, Madisonville, Knoxville, and Dandridge, in East 
Tennessee, 7nake the i77ip7'ession, on the minds of many, 
that the Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterians, &c, were 
equally interested in, and benefited by the Union; and many 
respectable persons in each of those places, will testify that 
they heard him, and so understood him. And indeed, in 
most if not all of those towns, he was opposed and contra- 
dieted. And since Mr. Shepherd has been so faithfully and 
repeatedly warned on this subject, it is devoutly hoped, that 
in future, he will not let the zeal inspired by the eight 
HUNDNED DOLLARS he receives annually, as a iiiissionary^ 
age7it, carry him to such length. 



CHAPTER VII. 

Speeches of messrs. powel and burden, in the senate 

OF the state of PENNSYLVANIA, ON THE APPLICATION 
OF THE AMERICAN SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION, FOR AN ACT 
OF INCORPORATION. 

After the reader shall have perused the following highly 
important, and every way instructive speeches, of these 
honorable and talented gentlemen, together with a few con- 
cluding remarks of my own, he will be fully prepared, I 
think, in every material respect at l^ast, to form a correct 
opinion with regard to the American S. S. Union. The 
bill, an act to incorporate the Trustees of the American Sun- 



OF PRESBTTERIANISM. 59 

day School Union, was under consideration, in committee of 
the whole, Mr. Herbert in the chain 

**[Mr. Duncan having concluded his remarks msupport of the bill — ] 

Mr. Powel addressed the chair. Unhappily, I am constrained (said Mr. 
P.) to contend not only against persons whose motives I cannot condemn, 
byt I am coerced to oppose my personal friends, in a misguided effort to 
promote the cause of religion, important alike to all conditions of men. 

It is not against Sabbath schools, for of them I honestly approve, nor is 
it against the patriotic gentlemen whose names are embodied in your bill, 
that I shall say aught which even the cavils of fanaticism can condemn. 

If I were to seek security for good intentions, I should find it in their 
high standing as individuals, in their good works as members of religious 
associations, wherein many of them have been exalted by their charity 
and Christian zeal. I trust, sir, I shall be defended from all suspicion of 
hostihty to Sunday School institutions, of desire to cast oblique censure 
upon the parties, who by their influence give countenance, and by their 
purse afford aid, to the religious instruction of the ignorant, fitting them 
to endure the sad trials of this world, and preparing them for the great 
object of our being — happiness in that -which is to come. 

When I accuse their ageiits of machination, I do it fearlessly. I am 
prep#.red to establish that which I utter by their own language, by tracing 
a systematic effort boldly to assume the despotism of ^'dictators," daringly 
avowing their object — exclusion from "all the political power of the 
country," all men whose consciences have been warped, whose charac- 
ters have not been formed, whose devotion has not been secured by their 
system of education, their rites of "baptism," their modes of worship, 
their notions of the trinity and of transubstantiation, promulgated by 
certain blind zealots, who would make all men and sJl doctrines subser- 
vient to an established "orthodox" creed. 

We have had an elaborate, and eloquent exposition of the wishes of the 
Sunday School Union, an ingenious attempt to confute by anticipation, all 
which it is supposed the opponents of the bill can adduce in support of 
tlie grounds which they have assumed. With great deference for the 
sagacity, with the utmost respect for the ability of the accomplished ad- 
vocate of the Sunday School Union, I venture to assert that he will not 
attempt the refutation of that which I am about to offer, that which they 
bave written, that which they have published, that which they have put 
upon our desks to enable us to measure the extent of their usefulness, 
to decide upon the tendency of their efforts, the great object of tlieir 
plans. He resolutely denies that one sentence can be shown, that a sin- 
gle fact can be brought in support of the positions which he has assailed. 
{Here Mr. Powel turned towards Mr. Duncan, saying] Permit roe, sir, to 
iisk, will you deny that this substantial octavo, entitled the ''Sunday 
School Union Magazine," is authentic i that this collection of Sunday 
School documents, of Sunday School Union reports, of Sunday School 
precepts, of Sunday School Union political disquisitions and plans, is 
sanctioned by the managers whose names are paraded at length in various 
parts of the work? Can my friend deny that it is worthy of belief, that it 
is a compilation of such miscellaneous papers, of such pathetic addresses, 
and of such documents as they consider illustrative of their intentions, 
or conducive of their ends i" I find in this a\ ork, second report "of the 
American Sunda ySchool Union, page 93, May, 1826." These institu- 
tions may terminate in an organized system of mutual co-operation be- 
tween ministers and private Christians, so that every church shall be a 



60 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

disciplined army; where every one knows his place, and where every one 
has a place and a duty in the grand onset against sin. *'In ten years, or 
certainly in twenty, the political po'ver of our country would be in the 
bands of men whose characters have been formed under the influence of 
Sunday schools." And in pag-e 5th of the same work, "And the expe- 
rience of t^e civilized world demonstrates that the character of the man 
is built upon the principles instilled into the mind of the child. Your 
board have felt desirous therefore, not only of furnishing their own 
schools with suitable books, but of introducing such books into schools 
of a different description, and of rendering them so abundant as to force 
out of circulation those which tend to mislead the mind. They have not 
been backward, therefore, to assume the high responsibility of revising 
and altering the books they have published, wherever alterations seem 
necessary. They have chosen to do this, rather than tamely issue senti- 
ments which, in their consciences, they beheve to be false or inconsistent 
with the purity of divine truth." That this is not a vain boast they have 
proved by their third report of 1827. On the first page 1 find [here Mr. 
Powelread anotljcrbook which had been laid upon his desk] that '<1,616,- 
796 publicadons which added to those issued by the society in the two 
preceding years, make a grand total of 3 741,341 " Not satisfied, sir, 
with this vain-glorious display in their regular reports, republished and 
circulated in their magazines, they have appended a catalogue to one ot 
their works, wherein they have reiterated in stronger terms, if practicable, 
the great object of their association.— [Here Mr. Powel again turning to 
Mr. Duncan, said] will the gentleman receive this as a fact* Will he con- 
sider their own statenieuts as worthy of regard' Or will he contend, that, 
in the assumption of the power to alter books, to change the ideas of the 
author, they have contrived to make their advocate consider them pos- 
sessed of authority to alter the vocabulary of the language which we use. 
If I were to call them dictators, I should be accused of injustice; yet they 
say in their catalogue, "While the committee feel the immense responsi- 
bility which they assume in becoming dictators to the consciences of thous- 
ands of immortal beings on the great and all important subject of the ivel- 
fare of their souls, while they cbead the consequences of uttering /o?-gc- 
I'ies, or giving their sanction to the misrepresentation of the glorious truths 
of the gospel, they are not backvi'ard to become the responsible ar- 
biters in these high points, rather than tamely issue sentiments which, in 
their consciences, they believed to be false or inconsistent with the purity 
of divine truth. They continue in the same page to assert, "In prepar- 
ing works for the press, the utmost libeity is used with regard to whatever 
is republished by them," and "in changing even the ideas." They alter 
the arrangement, mutilate the work, and change the ideas, yet retain the 
name of the author, thus making established names and forced construc- 
tions of received doctrines, subservient to their dictatorial will. 

We ar^ told that the managers did not write the passage predicting that 
political /influence which "in ten years is to assume all the power of the 
country," and in ten years is to turn us all out of our seats. We are told 
that it was written by a clergyman. Is it on that account of less force '' 
it has been urged that it was written by a Connecticut clergyman.-— The 
gentleman has oi;borne to make comment on this point. He exultingly 
exclaimed it was only tiie production of a Sunday School teacher. Would 
he have us inter that it should therefore be rejected as futile and unworthy 
of belief? No, sir, he will not venture to tell us this. He has told us 
nmch which 1 did not expect to hear. He has introduced an Episcopal 
bishop with some irrelevant and harsh remaiks, which 1 shall pass by as 
unworthy of my regard. I am concerned that my friend, in his happy 



OF raiSSBYTERIAXISM, 61 

vein of sarcasm, has placed Dr. Ely in a ludicrous light- "Poor Dr. Ely," 
as he calls him: Heaven forbid that 1 should dare to call him poor, or to 
compare him to "a scare crow," or to "the pope." He has coupled him 
with General Jackson, and attempted to excite the Jackson feeling- in this 
house. I regret that he has done so, although I well know his appeal 
will avail nought. I have never seen, sir, any instance, in which that 
feeling has been excited on this floor, and I am well assured it never will 
be exerted, except on fit occasions, if such can here arise in relation to 
the great contest for political sway. I cannot conceive by what motive 
he could be impelled to introduce general Jackson's name, unless it be 
from the connection in his own mind with the viev/s of the agents o{ the 
Sunday School Union, and their determination in "ten ^r at most twenty" 
years, to establish ecclesiastical domination, and the union of churcli and 
state. [Here Mr. Powel read from the 3d report of the Sunday School 
Union, May, 1827, page 17.] "The annual report of the board of mana- 
gers was then read by the Rev. Dr: Ely, of the third Presbyterian church, 
by whom it was written." I will ask my colleague is not poor Dr. Ely, 
by this passage identified with the Sunday School Union as the expounder 
of their views, as the writer of their report? [Here Mr. Powel read the 
following extracts from Dr. Ely's sermon: — ] 

"In other words, our presidents, secretaries of the government, sena- 
tors and other representatives in Congress, governors of states, judges, 
state legislators, justices of the peace, and city magistrates, are just as 
much bound as any other persons in the United States, to be orthodox in 
their faith." 

"Our rulers, like any other members of the community, who are under 
law to God as rational beings, and under law to Christ, since they have 
the light of divine revelation, ought to search the Scriptures, assent to 
the truth, profess faith in Christ, keep the Sabbath holy to God, pray in 
private and in the domestic circle, attend on the public ministry of the 
word,' be baptized, and celebrate the Lord's supper ** The electors of 
these five classes of true Christians united in the sole requisition o^ appar- 
ent friendship to Christianity in every candidate for office whom they will 
support, could govern every public election in our country, without infring- 
ing in the least upon the charter of our civil liberties. 

**The Presbyterians alone could bring half a miUlon of electors into the 
field. 

**I propose, fellow citizens, a new sort of union, or if you please, a 
fJhristian party in politics, which 1 am exceedingly desirous all good men 
in our country should join." 

"I am free to avow, that other things being equal, I would prefer foi- 
my chief magistrate, and judge, and ruler, a sound Presbyterian.** It 
will be objected that my plan of a truly Christian party in politics wilt 
make hypecrites. We are not answerable for their hypocrisy if it does." 

We have seen, continued Mr. Powel, that a reverend and erudite gen- 
tleman, whose piety and good works might have been taken as a guaran- 
tee against all danger of clerical violence or sectarian proscription, has 
boldly exposed the system of tactics, and designated the modes of attack 
in which even he, so highly revered, so implicitly obeyed, would employ 
the ^'disciplined army where every one has a place, where every one 
knows his place," to exclude from "all the political power of our coun- 
try," all men whose characters have not been formed by Sunday Schools. 
If this gentleman, justly elevated by talents, so highly embellished by 
learning, and so much distinguished by religious sway, be so zealous as 
to consider ecclesiastical domination the dear object of his career, what 
may we not suspect, what ought we not to expect from ignorant and bigot- 
P 



63 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

ted satellites, radiating light and heat from a grand luminary, a "retrospec- 
tive theologian," a Michavelian politician, soaring in regions of visionary 
philosophy, calling on half a million of followers, to rally for the exclu- 
sion of all men who are not <*orthodox*' from the polls. 

This reverend and meek Christian, we have seen, is not merely the asso- 
ciate of the Sunday Shod Union — he is their organ — the person selected 
to compile- their report — to read their report; and I have their own au- 
thority, to write their report; thus made the guide of the vast machine, 
prepared to '■'force out of circulation'^ all works which they do not 
approve — to force upon ^'schoola of a different descriptio7iy" books which 
they have mutilated, still sanctioned by the authority of the original 
author's names, although perverted and adapted to the taste of those 
who are to be trained as implicit believers in that which the Christian 
pastor happens to deem the orthodox faith. 

That the managers of the Sunday School Union are full, well impressed 
with the danger of clerical interference, is sufficiently manifest from the 
clause in their constitution, which admits but laymen as members of their 
board, and that they apprehend the force of the arguments which such 
mterference would inevitably add^uce in opposition to their prayer for a 
charter, is evident from the fact, that they have told you, that all but 
laymen are excluded from their board.. But it happens that notwithstand- 
ing the resolution they have evinced, the acumen they have displayed, 
the sagacity and determination with which all these movements are fraught, 
they have been seduced from their purpose by that good feeling — that 
Christian acquiescence, that high degree of humility which rehgion im- 
poses, and which her pastors can adroitly turn to any end which they deem 
good. 

They have assured us that all men and all children, and all denomina- 
tions are alike objects of their fostering care, and that no religious creed — 
no sectarian feeling, no desire but that of doing good, can operate upon 
their minds. I believe them, they are incapable of falsehood, it is not 
possible to make them designedly do wrong, I repeat, it is not of them T 
have feai', nor is it of men remarkable as the reverend pastor, that I have 
dread: for I am assured that he is stimulated by an honest desire, to make 
all men Christians after his own fashion — to make them all happy in his 
own way — to make them all orthodox in his own faith; he has told us this, 
and he has told us the truth. Nor have I objection to the denomination 
of Christians whom he would lead. I am not one of those who would 
denounce them as sectarians — who are disposed to deny to them the full 
measure of good intentions and good works. I am satisfied, sir, there are 
no Christians whose usefulness here, whose prospects of eternal bhss 
hereafter, are better established than those of that portion of the commu- 
nity distinguished by their name. Far be it from me to entertain doubt, 
or tacitly to submit to insinuation which could cast aspersion upon them. 
I have, sir, resisted upon this floor, what I conceived to be an attack upon 
the trustees and professors of a neighboring college, because accidental 
association, and the unalterable affinity of juxta position, had not failed to 
operate upon these Presbyterians, as it must do, ever has done, and 
always will do upon all men, whether high churchmen, Mohammedans or 
Jews. 

It is to the casuistical workings of priestcraft — the ceaseless efforts of 
misguided men, whose brains inflamed by any passion, would make tliem 
humble and wiUing tools, prepared either to act as decorated pageants in 
the grand army, as it is called, in a crusade for political power, or to sub- 
mit as ejaculating martyrs at the stake, to witisfy the venge?ince of religious 
bigotry and mad zeal. This is strong language, but sir, have we not 



OF PBESBYTEBIANISM. 63 

been told that "all the political power in the country within ten or twenty- 
years shall be in the hands of persons whose characters have been formed 
at Sunday Schools" — ^formed under the direction of those who can force 
out of circulation that of which they do not approve — of those wlio boldly 
assert that they will force into use that which they have mutilated, and 
have adapted to their own ends — of those who daring-ly declare that they 
are dictators to the consciences of thousands of immortal beings — of those 
Avhose organ utters anathemas from the house of God, calling on his fol- 
lowers to form a "Christian party in politics,'* to be supported by half a 
million of followers — to establish ecclesiastical domination — the rites of 
baptism — the orthodox faith throughout the land. 

Such consequences are not to be apprehended within our day, but they 
are to be apprehended, if we believe the predictions of the pious gentle- 
man, and if we regard the prayer of the petitioners asking a charter, and 
the bill which they have prepared for our file, authorizing them *«for 
ever hereafter to hold all and all manner of lands, tenements and heredita- 
ments," without limitation of time or capital, but merely acquiescing in 
tlie limitation of monied income, not to exceed ten thousand dollars per 
year. 

IVe are told that no sectarian feeling can operate in the board of mana- 
gers — that all persons may become contributors — may be made voters, 
and that no man is disqualified by his religious sentiments from participa- 
tion in their concerns. Let it be admitted that there is no test at this time 
in force. But has not their reporter — the accomplished and frank expoun- 
der of their views, the reverend gentleman told us, from the pulpit, in 
the house of God, that he would marshal his forces, — that he would call 
on half a million of followers to proscribe, exclude from the highest to 
the lowest civil offices those who had not been "baptized" — who are not 
orthodox in their faith — "those who are not Presbyterians." Can it be 
helieved that this gentleman whose character stands so deservedly high 
for steadiness of purpose, would say that which he did not mean to be seri- 
ously received, or that having said it, he would not act upon it, or that he 
acting upon it would disregard the means which we have been told would in 
ten years give effect to the great end!' Would he not in his pious endeavors 
to (Jo that which he conscientiously thinks right, forbear to apply his elo- 
quence? Would he not marshal his forces to exclude from the list of 
agents, if not from the board of managers, all those whose creeds, whose 
purposes, and whose objects are not consistent with his own? But, sir, 
how is the facts? A reverend gentleman has already been employed with 
a large salary to take the field," a missionary fund has been established, 
collected from the auxiliary schools connected with the vast machine. 

A grand sjstem of proselytism has been formed, rules are given for the 
modes of attack upon the old and young — "The hour of affliction, the 
moments of despair," are pointed out as fit occasions to grasp the victims 
of sectarian zeal. 

I must again absolve the gentleman at the head of this institution; and» 
sir, most emphatically do I except those whose names ar6 embodied in 
your bill with their consent, and those whose names are so embodied with- 
out their consent^ and those who have contributed by their money and their 
countenance, to objects of the Sunday School Union, from all grounds of 
accusation — from all suspicion of aught unjust or unfair. 

I shall be forgiven, I irust, by them, if in obedience to my oath to de- 
fend the constitution, I oppose a deliberate plan to exclude in ten or twenty 
years, any set of men whether educated or uneducated, whether "ortho- 
idoi" or heterodox from the politcal power of the country: a plan avowed- 



•04 HELPS TO THE STUDX 

ly to operate in destroying the freedom of the press — ^in fact to estabKsb 
ecclesiastical domination throughout the land. 

Mr. Powel remarked that he should notice the defects of the bill, when 
it came under a second reading. 

Speech of Mr. Burden^ in the Senate of Pennsylvania^ on the bill to incor- 
porate the Trustees of the American Sunday School Union. 

Mr. Burden said that he was opposed to the bill, becanse it would cre- 
ate a monopoly in trade. There was one class of citizens that had been 
too much neglected by legislatures, he alluded to the working class^ the 
bone, the sinew, ave the marrow of the community, the foundation of 
■Wealth andprospemy — a class pre-eminent in the annals of freedom in all 
ages. He said, that though there was no law on the statute book against 
this class, yet the courts had the power, by the common law, (a creature 
generated in the morasses in the days of barbarism,) to imprison working 
men for associating to regulate their wages. He said that he would watch 
over the interests of these men. From this class he sprung, and he was 
not prepared to pass a law which would injure them. True, a few book- 
sellers, wealthy booksellers, had recommended the incorporation, but 
where sltb the printers and the book binders? Why have they not put their 
names to the petition? Book sellers might not for many years feel the 
injury, but the printers of small capital would find it difficult to compete 
with an institution of immense capital derived from gratuitous subscrip- 
tion, and having the power, as it professes the design of driving out of 
circulation all school books by the cheapness of its own pubhcations. 
The enterprize of individuals would be paralyzed, and the market would 
be in the hands of the Union. 

To be sure the book trade only will or can be affected. But where 
are you to stop? "What right have you to single it out' He cared not 
whether the wedge were gold or iron, he never would give his sanction 
to its embrace. What do they want with an act of incorporation? Cannot 
schools be taught without charters? 

What necessity exists for granting a charter to the Union? In three 
years it has issued from its press upwards of three millions of publications, 
it has prpspered beyond the prophecies of men and the warmest antici- 
pations of its promoters. Its managers tell you in their report, that if it 
continues to increase as it has done during the last year, it will overspread 
the land. Why, then, after a system of individual liability which has 
been attended with .such prosperous results, why enable it to acquire a 
credit without a responsibility, that it may become a monopoly? 

Much h.as been said about the sectarianism incident to this institution. 
Tor his part, he would not lift his finger towards heaven, to change the 
religious belief of any man in Christendom: to make a Baptist, an Epis- 
copalian, or any thing else. He thought the multipheity of sects advan- 
tageous to the country;— It tended to preserve our civil and religious 
liberties, and each sect watched the other, and thus conduced to morality. 

The gentleman from the city (Mr. Duncan) had been much frightened 
by the scarecrow, as he termed it, (i. e., a printed letter of quotations 
from the Sunday School reports, and Dr. Ely's sermon.) He thought 
the gentleman should have been thankful for it to them who sent it 
here, for it had afforded him a text for his speech. 

Let us look, for a few moments, at what the report says. In the body 
of the report of 1825, and attached to the catalogue are the following: 
» 'While the committee feel the immense responsibility which they assume, 
in becoming dictators to the conscience of thousands of immortal beings on 
the great and all important subject of the welfare of their soulsj while 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 65 

they dread the consequences oi uttering forgeries, or giving /^en- sanction, 
to misrepresentations of the glorious truths of the gospel, Me_y are not back- 
ward to become the responsible arbiters in these liigh points, rather than 
tamely issue sentiments which, in their consciences, they believe to be 
ialse, or inconsistent with the purity of divine truth, however recom- 
mended by the means of the illustrious saiiits, or the sanction of the most 
e-vangelical and benevolent societies." Pretty high grounds! great assump- 
tion, no doubt! But the city gentleman explains all a-lvay. "They were 
unguarded ex])ressions," he is pleased to assure us. They were either 
unguarded, or they were designed. He may take one view or the oth^, 
for they ai'e at his service. If the first be the case, are we to trust men to 
keep our consciences, who write so unguardedly? And if the second, I 
tiiink It is liigh time to relieve the committee of such high responsibility. 

I (said Mr. B.) have heard much of the infallibility of the pope, (he 
meant no disrespect to him, nor to any other dignitary of the church,) 
hut it vs-as a new thing for men to bow to the decrees of a tribunal made 
xip of beings acknowledged to be as fallible as themselves. 

The committee of publication from which emanated these expressions, 
is made up — of whomi* Not the reverend clergy, whose education and 
calHng, one w^ould suppose, qualified them to judge of matters of faith; 
not of these, but oi Jive laymen m the city of Philadelphia. What a 
court of conscience! Are these laymen more pious than the clergy? Are 
they more conversant with what constitutes the purity of divine truth ^ 
Are they more free from sectarianism? Do they tell us why are they 
preferred? 

Mr. Burden continued. He had no doubt but the gentlemen were 
liighiy respectable and good members of society. But he did not con- 
sider on that account they were competent judges, and should have the 
immense power placed in their hands to alter any school book to suit their 
tenets, and to drive out of circulation all books which did not come up to 
their mark. Let us dissect this a little closer. This committee consists 
of five, a- quorum of which, three, is to pass on all publications whatever, 
which issue from their press. To guard against sectarianism, three dif- 
ferent sects must be represented in this committee. He would ask, was 
this a sufficient guard ? Are there not persons of different denominations 
whose creeds are virtually the same? He could make out a committee of 
Calvinists or of Arminians, and not infringe on the letter of the con- 
stitution,- and he had read sufficient law reports to know the glorious 
uncertainties of judicial decisions. 

He was not prepared to give any men the authority to dictate to con- 
science. The great author of conscience, had established it the strong- 
est tie between man and his Maker; he had never interfered with it, 
and he knew of no human tribunal qualified or entitled to do it, much 
less that a committee of five men, in the city of Philadelphia, should 
have the great responsibility over the rising generation of the United 
States. 

He said he agreed with the gentleman who advocated the bill, that it 
was the duty of the legislature to promote education. He was disposed 
to go all reasonable lengths — he looked on the youth as the property of 
the nation — he was willing to vote for general education at the public ex- 
pense, not for colleges whicii are for the rich, but for common schools, 
where aristocratic dirtinctions would be broken down; but he was not in 
favor of throwing the children, on whom the future prospects of the 
country would depend, and to whom the charter of our liberties would be 
committed, as pensioners on the bounty of any men; he was not disposed 
to commit their consciences to the keeping of any committee, who might, 

f2 



56 HEIPS TO THE STUDY 

b/ ^'ungaai'ded expressions," obtain an undue authority over their minds. 

-rhe Union has told you, that in ten, or at farthest twenty years, all 
the political power of the country will be xn the hands of those who have 
been educated in the principles of Sunday Schools, ^^^^t ^i-om them .^^^^^^^ 
be taken our future legislatures. &c. &c. W ill our youth be taught this : 

It is thought that a union of church and state can never be effected n.. 
this country; that the idea of such a thing is visionary; perhaps it is but 
still there can be no harm in guarding against it. 1 he evils of ecclesias-- 
t ial powe-- originated from small beginnings When the ceremony of 
marriage became a sacred ordinance of the church, who anticipated any 
danger ^ and vet, loofc at the consequences which followed, from the 
.ubtletv of the clergy. They became the tribunals in cases of divorce, 
l.^itim'acy, wills, and testaments; they gradually interwove their influ- 
ercc in all the relations of life; their power was felt from the fireside to 
the throne; princes were deposed and crowned at their pleasure; and 
clerical oppression gave rise to the most tremendous revolutions that have 
e er naXdthe aunals of the worid. Man is the same being every 
where, and is not at this period sufficiently enlightened to be incapable of 

ommitUng the same errors as his ancestors did. To guard^ against 
ecrsfatlLl power in this country, we should watch our - !ff-- and 
civil freedom with a jealous eye. We know, that at one period of oui 
Ssorv within the mtmorv of man, that in some of our states a scheme 
wa fomed to give certain privileges to the clergy; it only failed from a 
pecuCcombinationofpoliticalcircumstai^ ^^^ ^'" ^^ ^Xoi' of\ 
ftt still burning:-pablications are spreading every where m favor of a 
re yousp^^^^^^^ Be^echer's work, which was put in my hands a few days 
;gof laud? the British people, because public «Fn^«" ^ ^°"^^,^,t^^,>^. ^'^ 
btvonet; and it ascribes all the immorahty and irrehgion of the United 

Wes to the fact, that men who have no right m the soil, and who have 
no capi al a stak^, enjoy the right of suffrage; and that public men fear 
to be a tenor to evil doers, lest the universal suffrage of the people should 

'^^^I^^t:'^ city, (M. Powel,)has read to you, and com. 
T^ented^ on tie sermon of Dr.* Ely. That discourse deserves sorne con- 
^deration, as the reverend gentleman is known as an active promoter and 
i4norter of the Union; and his sentiments taken in connexion with the 
Im>4s ons found in the Sunday School Magazme, are sufficient to put us 



H^d our fathers acted on such principles as are mcu cated m these 
pubUcatAons, the usefulness of such men asFrankhn ^nd Jefferson woti^d 
iiave been lost, for they were not communicants, nor what is called Y>ro- 

'"t^^erevj political station the men who are not professors, 
^ J^vnn lose many who would be a glory and an honor to your country. 
-LsS irLnnb^tLto pious men, but he disliked that system 
vHch;ould class as irreligious and wicked, all who do not pray m the 
maiket p^^^^ be seen of men. Who, when fire assails your dwell- 
ntlr7sh?o save your property or lives^ Who, when the pestilence 
^SLS rough y Jur dties,^^^^^^^ their lives for the comfort of the wretched^ 
A^o when^olr country is invaded, hasten to the battle field m defence 
of your liberties, or cover themselves with glory on the oce^' ^ ^^e men 
stigmatized by certain writers as the irrehgious and wicked because they 
practice much and profess little. 

But we are called upon to aid religion. It wants no aid- When the 
somemrcreator was pleased, in the chain of beings, to call into existence 
SXk i man, he gave him a portion of light suitable to his capacity; 



OV PRBSBYTERIANISM. 



67 



it differed in decree, but was the same light; and you might as well 
attempt to make men with their natural eyes, seethe same objects, at the 
same distances, and with similar appearances as endeavor to enforce the 
^me belief. Religion wants not the aid of law. The grea founder of 
Christianity asked Sot the support of government, for -his kmgdom was. 
not of this world." He asked not for titles nor powers, for the essence of 
his doctrine was humility-he required but a reasonable service, and he 
addressed the understanding. So long as his followers followed m his 
steps religion was spotless as the snow, and the messenger of peace and 
Mnn ness to the human race . With no assistance but its truth, the angel 
onCreliglon winged its way, amid the blaze of worldly science with an 
eve That never winked, and a wing that never tired; and dispelhng the 
terrors of the human mind, its first message was /car 7iot, for 1 bring you 
elad tidings. But when it became connected with government, an adul- 
t^ery was committed, the offspring of which destroys religion and free- 
dom After this we see the Catholic imbuing his hands in the blooci of 
the Protestant, and when the latter had power, the atmosphere blazed 
with fires, and the stakes were crowded with victims, bven in this 
countrv, when the Protestants could find no Catholics to exterminate, 
the meek and unoffending Quaker was brought to the gallows. 

Look at those countries where there exists a umon of church and state, 
and compare them with this country. What renders our clergy so hig^i- 
]y respectable, so superior to the same class m Europe?^ Because there 
is no government support; because ministers are mamtained by the volun- 
tary contributions of their congregations. So long as this system is con- 
tinued, you may expect to have a pious and useful clergy. Crea e a law 
church, and your pulpits will be filled by the vicious, the worthless and 

''T^ause'^therefore, before you incorporate this Union. Recollect a cor- 
poration'livesfor ever; and however highly you may esteem the present 
conductors, you cannot prophecy who may succeed them Remember 
it is not adult age which is to be managed by this ''powerful engme." but 

'^' A wi^'se^Providencehad so constructed our nature, that first impressions 
remain through life, and leave us only at the threshhold of etermty. The 
mindissaidto be like a sheet of blank paper: it may vary m color and 
porosity, but still it will receive any impression. The prejudices ot m- 
fancy lead the poor Hindoo to destroy himself under the wheels of Jugger- 
naut's chariot. They lead the tender mother to cast her loved child from 
the nourishing bosom to the jaws of the devouring crocodile, to appease 
the vengeance of an idol god. They lead you to feel the influence of nur- 
serv tal?s lonff afler your reason has convinced you that apparitions do not 
exist And if the mind can thus be turned back on the current of nature, 
will it be difficult, in this country, to teach children that none but ortho- 
' dox professors are fit for public stations, as Dr. Ely has said. 

True, we have a constitution; but the majority can alter it. And are 
we not old thata religious party can got'cmMe/^o/k? But admit the letter 
of the constitution should remain unchanged, cannot the common law 
afford sufficient pretexts to worm around it? Read the law reports of this 
state, and think as you please. 

We are told that education and bigotry can never exist in the same 
soil. What say you of the Jesuits? They promoted learmng: it was the 
lever of their power. They were the teachers of princes and people, 
and gained such an ascendancy over the mind, by presiding over educa- 
tion, that nothing but a providential interposition prevented them f^om 
putting civil and religious freedom into a common grave. 



68 HEIiPSTOTHESTUDY 

The teachers in Sunday Schools are directed to adopt the same kind of 
system as the Jesuits used, so far as this, that they are to report the pecu-' 
liar bias of mind, circumstances, ag-e, disposition, and character of the 
scholar, to make their impressions in times of prosperity, and in seasons 
of affliction. The teacliers, amounting- to upwards of 24,000, in the 
United States, will have facilities of corresponding-, and promptitude of 
action, equal for any emergency? they will truly be a "disciplined army, 
where every one knows and has his place." 

He begged it to be clearly understood, that he did not mean to impute 
such desig-ns to the present managers i on the contrary, he believed they 
were high minded, patriotic, and honorable men; but a corporation exists 
for ever, and it was our duty to be watchful. It had been said, that such 
things would never take place in our time, and he believed it, but if there 
was to be trouble, let us have it. Our fathers met trials for us, and it is 
our duty to hand down the charter of our liberties, which they committed 
to us, without a blot to posterity. 

As to the limitation of the act of incorporation to five years, he had no 
faith in it. Let the Union be incorporated five years, and few will be 
found daring enough to oppose it; a mammoth monied monopoly is not 
easily assailed; and he who would open his mouth against one which was 
clothed with what is called rehgion, would be held up to society as an in- 
fidel. If a public man, his political life would terminate. Already sucli 
is the dread of the Union, that the printer of the remonstrances was afraid 
his name should be exposed, (as Mr. B. was informed by letter, from a 
respectable citizen. ) And incorporate the Union for five years, audit 
will be re-chartered without difficulty. 

He said, that when he first occupied a seat in the House of Represen- 
tatives, he was in favor of the incorporation, and had intended to advo- 
cate it; but that fortunately one of their reports reached him, and he be- 
came convinced it was his duty to oppose it; he had no doubt, that many 
who signed the petitions, were under the mistake which he at first labor- 
ed under; he had seen, with pleasure, many signatures on the remon- 
strances, which had been placed without proper consideration on the pe- 
titions, and some of these were the names of men high in society. 

He had ascertained, that the respectable sect, the Methodists, who had 
been the pioneers of Christianity on our frontiers, and who had been in- 
strumental, in a great degree in moralizing society, were not in fiivor of 
the Union; that they disliked national societies for religious purposes; 
that they had said to the public, *'we are not partial to national combina- 
tions of an ecclesiastical character; they are to us like the armour of 
Saul buckled on David; they do not fit us." These people were con- 
tented with the prosperity and encouragement which God had given them, 
and they wished no government aid to religion. Other respectable and 
numerous sects are of the same opinion, and they are right. 

He said, that as the subject had been handled with great ability by the 
gentleman who preceded him, (Mr. Povvel,) and as the time of the com- 
mittee had been occupied, he would content himself, for the present, with 
recapitulating his objections in a few words — he would oppose the bill, 
because he thought it improper to legislate over territory beyond the ju- 
risdiction of the state; because the interest of the working classes, and 
the community at large, were liable to injury from the creation of mo- 
nopolizing trading companies; and because there was a possibility that 
influence would be exercised over the youth, incompatible with the 
rights which we are placed here to guard." 

During the 'mighty struggle for civil dominion on the con- 



OF PRBSBTTERIANISM. 69 

tinent of Europe, there were not, in my humble conception, 
two more thrilling and appropriate speeches delivered, than 
the preceding. For as the revolution in states and kingdoms, 
prostrated ancient dynasties, and uprooted deeply-founded 
customs and usages, so the effects resulting from the delivery 
of these two speeches, together with their publication, intro- 
duced, in many respects, a new era in the politics of Penn- 
sylvania. 

Cast into the political alembic which the American revolu- 
tion had prepared for the refinement and purification of souls, 
Messrs. Povvel and Burden came forth bearing the heavenly 
impress, and shining with all the graces of the spirit of free- 
dom, and endowed with an eloquence which confounded their 
enemies, while it filled their friends with admiration. 

It is, therefore, gratifying, to turn one's attention to those 
speeches, where we behold mznfl? developing its lofty powers 
in grasping so important a subject, where the fire of genius 
is enkindled at the altar of truth, and before whose prowess 
error lies prostrate, overcome and vanquished by that intel- 
lectual strength which was guided and directed by Him who 
is the author of truth; and who will ever guide and direct 
him, who is a friend to "the land of the free, and the home 
of the brave!" 

At the first appearance of these speeches, in the public 
prints, these gentlemen had to endure much obloquy and 
reproach. All the bitterness of sarcasm, the poignancy of 
wit and ridicule, as well as the piteous moans of offended and 
mortified pride and ambition, were alternately used against 
them by Dr. Ely's lazy legion of scavengers, under-strap- 
pers, draymen, and chimney sweeper?. Take for example, 
the following paragraph from a Presbyterian print." 

^^Torrents of abuse and animadversion have been poured 
upon the American Sunday School Union, on the occasion of 
its asking for an act of incorporation, from the Pennsylvania 
Legislature. After the cordial and unqualified approbation, 
expressed before a public meeting in the City of Washington, 
of the designs, principles and operations of the Union, by 
such men as Webster, Freelinghuysen, Wirt, Hayne and 
others, it might be expected that the small politicians who 
had disgraced the Legislature of Pennsylvania, would hide 
their diminished headsV^ 

These speeches aroused the public mind, and elicited an 
enquiry into the objects and plans of the Union, which its 
friends have felt the smart of ever since; and which they will 
continue to feel, while they harbor mercenary views, or try 



70 HELPS TO THE STTJ0Y 

to disguise ambitious purposes. Soon after the petitioiiiy 
praying that the Union might enjoy the same rights with 
bodies corporate in law, had been presented to the Legisla- 
ture, a long list of subscribers, eitizens of the Commonwealth 
of Pennsylvania, who believed it to be their duty to remon- 
strate against the passage of any such law, was also forwarded 
to the Legislature^ and was presented in both houses. This 
remonstrance first appeared in the American Sentinel, but 
was afterwards copied off into various papers, and extensive- 
ly circulated. I have it before me in pamphlet form^ from 
which I make the following extract: — • 

**A few years since, a number of schools were instituted for the instruc- 
tion of youth, on the first day of the week, commonly called Sunday,and in 
many cases were found productive of benefit to the community. In- 
tended for a class of citizens, who on that particular day were exposed 
to numerous temptations to vice, your remonstrants would not be con- 
sidered as objecting to their continuance on the original ground. 

But they have been increased in an alarming manner, by a combina- 
tion among men of undoubted ability, and pei'haps of piety. In the dif- 
ferent states of the Union, a number of these schools have been erected 
together, (or more strictly their managers) form^ing what has beea called a 
state society. The evil, however, does not stop heve, for these bodies 
are to be found in all the states, and at length, after unwearied efforts, 
they have been united into one grand system. Such is the scrope of action 
possessed by this mighty institution, that while its trunk reposes on the 
soil of our state, its members are spread from Maine to Mexico, and from 
the Atlantic to the Western Wilderness. Its concerns are managed by 
men who, both in their public discourses and private conversation, have 
rot scrupled to avow their determination to subject the consciences and 
persons of the /ree citizens of these United States to the tyranny of aa 
ecclesiastical domination. 

Thip being the state of the matter, your remonstrants have, with plea.- 
sure, recurred to the example and precepts of the great founder of tliis 
state, who ever held in his hand the ample charter of liberty; who invited 
the oppressed from the blood-stained arena of European despotism, and 
who ransomed the wretched victims of religious persecution from loath- 
some dungeons^where the tyrant's mandate had hurled them. In the sys- 
tem of our ahcestors, there was nothing of intolerance or of bigotry, for 
they recognized, in its broadest sense, the great principle, that man is 
answerable to man only for his external acts, and that the mind is freer 
tJian the air we breathe. That with the private opinions and consciences 
of men, no human law can, or ought to interfere, the right of directing 
the soul of man, being the prerogative of God. Influenced by such ele- 
vated motives, they spurned all narrow notions, and dispensed the bless- 
ings of civil government with an impartial hand. 

It is ours to say, we live in a land where no religious test is required 
from any of its people, and where it is declared to be not an indulgence 
merely, but the inalienable right of every man to worship his Creator 
according to the dictates of his conscience. But in vain shall we exult in 
the privilege, if the great basis of our hopes is slowly to be sapped. 

The institution to which we have thus called your attention, alike osten» 
isibly framed for benevolent purposes, has manifestly passed the bounds 



OF PRESBYTERIAKISM. 71 

prescribed, in ordinary circumstances, to bodies of a similar nature . It has 
been rapidly engrossing the pubhcation of works of a religious character, 
and at the present moment the quantity of secular business transacted, is 
of immense amount. The necessary results will be, a monopoly both 
spiritual and temporal, alike repugnant to the genius of the constitution, 
and destructive to the future exertions of many enterprising individuals. 

Its concerns are transacted in a building splendid and imposing in its as- 
pect^ the lower story of which is occupied as a store for the sale of numer- 
ous books, authorized by the managers. In this large collection, there 
is not to be found apuhlication at variance with the creed of the religious 
society most interested in its welfare." 

Those who may object to the foiegoing chapters because 
little occurrences are noticed with a particularity which they 
may think monotonous and tiresome, should remember that 
these are parts of the subject, and are therefore essential to 
the completion of this exposition. They are, beside, facts, 
which, had they been omitted out of regard to the classical 
taste of those who are more nice than wise, would have left 
chasms which the mind of the reader must have either filled 
up with conjecture, or left vacant for want of the necessary 
materials. I have, therefore, endeavored to connect every 
chain by its several links; and though sonrte links maybe of 
such a structure as to detract from the beauty and strength of 
the chain, yet, they are no less essential to make it complete. 



CHAPTER VIII. 

American tract societt — its origin— -principles^ — de- 
sign AND TENDENCY. 

The art of printing was discovered about the same time 
tiiat Luther commenced the Reformation in Germany. And 
how powerfully and efficiently this mechanical engine was 
used to diffuse abroad those grand and reforming principles 
which Luther, under God, was instrumental in reviving, I 
need not now undertake to tell, as it is known to all who have 
the slightest acquaintance with the history of this great and 
beneficial process; and as it is not necessary to my present 
purpose. 

It is true, however, that the enemies of the cause availed 
themselves of the same weapon in defence of error; but the 
evil is much more than counterbalanced by the immense ad- 
vantages resulting from a proper application of this powerful 
instrument. From the time of the Reformation, along down 
to the present day, we find that by the press, the principles 



yS HELPS TO THE STUDY 

of civil and religious liberty have been developed, and that a 
glorious influence has been exerted on both the understand- 
ings and moral conduct of mankind, as well as on the civil 
state of society. Tyrants and deceivers have trembled lor 
their fate ever since Mr., Coster, of the city of Harlaem, in 
the Netherlands, invented this art; and more especially have 
they trembled since this engine has been put in successful 
operation in the different kingdoms of this world ; and they 
will continue to be alarmed until they are both driven from 
their "hiding places,'' and from their < 'refuges of lies," — so 
I most ardently pray. 

In regard to the origin and history of tracts, and tract 
societies, I may briefly premise, that even the I3ible itself 
was first published in the form of tracts, the books of which it 
is composed having been issued separately, and in succession; 
and even after the sacred canon was completed, brief religious 
productions were from time to time ushered into the world. 
I have already intimated, that the Reformers of the sixteenth 
century, with the facilities afforded by the invention of the 
art of printing, availed themselves of this art or mode of dis- 
seminating religious truth, and that too, to the great annoy- 
ance of papal authority and infallibility. But the successors 
to the reformers pursued the same course, till at length the 
Rev. John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, took a more 
permanent and decided stand in this work; and during almost 
the whole of his long life, issued, from his own press, large 
quantities of tracts on various subjects, many of which, being 
gratuitously distributed, were perused with avidity by all 
classes of the community. But it was not till 1799, that the 
first regular tract society was organized. The ' 'London 
Tract Society," which is properly the parent institution, takes 
its date from this period; and was especially established to 
counteract the influence of the infidel tracts and infidel prin- 
ciples of Voltaire and his associates. 

The first regularly organized tract institution in the United 
States, was the ''Connecticut Tract Society," founded in 
1807; although Dr. Coke, Bishop Asbury, and others of the 
Methodist church, had circulated tracts to a considerable 
extent at a much earlier date. 

The earliest regularly organized tract society in the Metho- 
dist church, was the < 'New- York Methodist Tract Society," 
in 1817; although tracts to a considerable amount had been 
printed and circulated by the Methodist Book Concern, since 
the year 1811. In 1826, the style of this society was 



6P FitESBYTERIANiSM, 73 

/t^hanged to that of the tract society of the Methodist 

^EPISCOPAL CHURCH. 

* Other denominations, generally, have, at this time, their 
respective tract societies; and if I were not fearful that I 

^ might weary the patience of the reader, I would mention the 

I day and date of their organization. 

The AMERICAN tract society was not instituted till so 
late as the year 1825. The first annual meeting of this insti- 

^ttjtion was held at the City Hotel, New- York, on Wednesday, 
May 10, 1826. Now, this institution, as may be said of all 

^ the national societies, is decidedly a Presbyterian concern: 
i^vyas gotten up by these folks— it is carried on by them; and 

m is aiding and abetting the cause of Presbyterianism, in, 
h'ery way. Notwithstanding all this, however, the agents, 
managers, and members of the society, all unite in trying to 
impress the public mind with the belief, that the Methodists, 
Episcopalians, Baptists, Presbyterians, Lutherans, &c. are all 
equally concerned in its management, and benefited by its 
operations. And in every annual report of the society, and 
in almost every number of the American Tract Map;azine, 
statements, to this effect have been made; together with the 
most positive assurance that none of the society's publications 
were in the least degree sectarian. For instance, take the 
following paragraph, from the First .Annual Report of the 

^Executive Committee, of the Society, submitted in Mav, 
1826:— •^' 

«'If any have imbibed the impression, i\\^i religious tracts 
are unworthy of their own personal regard, the committee 
have only to invite them to become familiar wnth their con- 
tents; and they will find them richly imbued with that Gospel 
which is ^profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, 
and for instruction in righteousness.' They are adapted to 
the spiritual wants of the old and the young, the rich and the 
poor, the learned and the unlearned. Most of them are 
written by men whose praise is in all the churches; (Presby- 
terian clergymen,) and though the publications of the society 
have been selected by individuals from different denomi- 
nations OF christians, the committee would express their 
persuasion, that thers is no series of tracts to be found, in 
any country, or any language, more decidedly evangeli- 
cal." 

In the Philadelphian, of October 14, 1831, (and over his 
own signature too) we have the following laconic reply, to 
one of the editor's correspondents, who had enquired what 
relation the different denominations sustain to this society: 



7* HEXPS TO THE STtlDT 

"The American Tract Society is governed by fipiscopap*^ 
Hans, Methodists, Baptists, Congregationalists, Presby terians,4 
and members of the Reformed Dutch church, in nearly eqital ^ 
numbers from each section of the church of God to which 
they belong. Of course they publish no tract hostile to th . . 
views and interests of any one of the parties concerned irt i 
this grand Tract cause! The Baptists and Methodists, how- ♦ 
ever, have their independent tract societies, which publish 
their respective, peculiar tenets. The Presbyterians hav^'J 
no Presbyte^'ian Tract Society any where in operation, so 
far as I know, to disseminate those doctrines in which they . 
differ from their Baptist, Methodist, and Episcopal brethren; 
and the reason is, that the Presbyterians are less sectarianU 
in their views, feelings, and efforts, than any other de^ 
nomination in our country ! ! V^ ' 

Now, I would enquire, is it not a little strange, that the 
Baptists and Methodists, having their own ^^independent 
tract societies'' should still continue to govern, in ^'nearly 
equal" proportions, the American Tract Society? 

And for a Presbyterian to say or publish, <nhat the Presby- 
terians are less sectarian in their views, feelings, and efforts, 
than any other denomination in our country," only excites 
my commiseration, to think that he is so blinded. There is 
so much perversity of truth, and, I fear, obliquity of inten- 
tion indirectly set forth in the two foregoing extracts, that I^ 
am at a loss to know how I shall answer them, whether with 
severity, or by candid explanation. But it has just occured 
to me, that they carry with them their own refutation and 
condemnation. Notwithstanding Dr. Ely represents this 
society under color and profession of being a common interest, 
not sectarian, he is, himself, the projector and great god- 
father of it; and he knows, that it was set on foot for the express 
purpose of disseminating the < 'respective, peculiar tenets" of 
Calvinism. And, that much abused pack-horse, the people, 
cannot be deceived any longer. The mask is well nigh off. 

At the first annual "meeting of the American Tract Society, 
William McKendree and Joshua Soule, two of the 
bishops of the Methodist Episcopal Church, were elected to 
the office of Vice-Presidents, without their knowledge or 
consent! And in this same way, many prominent Methodist 
ministers in different states in the Union, have been made 
officers and life members of this Institution ; but in every case, 
they have written the society polite notes, requesting their 
names to be stricken from the list of officers and members. 
Now all this has been done to form a kind of zest to the song 



or PRBSBYTBMIANISM. 7^ 

of union; and to enable the agents of the American Tract 
Society, to more effectually filch money from the pockets and 
purses of the members and friends of the Methodist church. 
And so common was this practice, about the time of the 
formation of the American Tract Society, and for some time 
after that, that at a meeting of the board of managers of the 
New York Methodist Tract Society, the following resolutions 
were unanimously passed: — 

"1 . Resolved^ That in the opinion of this board it is inexpedient for the 
Methodist Tract Society to unite in the proposed establishment of a Na- 
ilonal Tnct Society; and that such an institution, with any other of a simi- 
lar nature, is rather fraught with danger to the religious communities in 
this country, in which every advance toward any establishment of a 7ia- 
tional character, professedly connected with religion, ought to be 
promptly and decidedly discountenanced. 

2. Resolved^ That this board are of opinion that it will be improper to 
place the names of any official or other persons in the Methodist Episco- 
pal Church on any committee, or in any official relation, connected with 
the proposed establishment, without their consent. 

3. Resolved, That a copy of the above resolutions be transmitted by 
the clerk to the committee of the New York Tract Society, and to the 
agent of the American Tract Society. 

The foregoing is a true copy from the minutes of the board of the New 
York Methodist Tract Society. 

L. S. BURLING, Ci.'k." 

Again: By examining the list of members for life, as well 
as the directors for life, as exhibited in the last annual report 
of this society, it will be seen, that there are five Calvinists 
for ONE Arminian!!! And, as <^each subscriber of five dol- 
lars annually, shall be a director;'' and as "the board of direc- 
tors shall annually elect, by ballot, a puhlishing^ a distri- 
buting, and a finance committee,'' I avow, that under the 
provisions of the constitution, Calvinists, Unitarians, Univer- 
salists, Deists, or any other sect, are competent to take charge 
of the Institution. See the second and fifth articles of the 
constitution. And what security have we, that this whole 
concern will not'ultimately be used, for the exclusive purpose 
oi publishing the Catechisms, and Confession of Faith, of 
the Presbyterian church? Or what security have we, that 
the vast army of Infidels who reside in New York, will not 
in the end, take charge of the society, and use it to publish 
the origmal tracts of Voltaire? The constitution allows of 
this abuse. 

Again : This society boasts of the cheapness of its publica- 
tions; and its agents represent it as greatly underselling all 
other a§3Qci?^tions of the kind. But I find by examining "the 



76 HELPS UO THU STUDY 

society's established price for its publications," that the Tract 
Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church, sells its publica- 
tions twenty 'per cent, cheaper!! However, had the Metho- 
dist Tract Society to support as many lazy agents, and half 
as many profligate little missionaries, as does the American 
Tract Society, its publications would not be so cheap. 

As to the American Tract Society, however, it has already 
at its command about sixty-five thousand dollars annu- 
ally ! ! ! In the year 1833, the receipts into the treasury of the 
American Tract Society, were, in one months upwards of 
four thousand dollars! And the amount paid into the trea- 
sury during the same month, for tracts sold, was upwards of 
three thousand dollars! 

Should the Bank of the United States be put down, as it in 
all probability will, why, then, in money matters, the Ameri- 
can Tract Society must stand without a rival! 

Once more: It is said by the friends and agents of this 
society, that its publications are not only cheap, but entirely 
free from every thing like sectarianism. 

First, many of its publications are light and fictitious, and 
consequently pernicious, which, so far from benefiting the 
mind, robs it of correct principle: next, others are decidedly 
Calvinistic; while others, 1 readily allow, are super-excellent; 
and the style in which they are written, though very elegant, is 
not more excellent than the subjects treated upon. But, 
upon the whole, we should teach our innocent and unsuspect- 
ing children to shun them, as Ihey would the Samiel of the 
Desart! Should any doubt whether the publications of this 
Society are sectarian, or have a^sectarian tendency, as speci- 
7?iens, I refer them to the Tracts JNo. 27, and No. 171, the 
one denominated '^Parental Duties," and the other "Parental 
Faithfulness." In addition to the direct influence which this 
society exerts upon the public sentiment by the circulation 
of its tracts, some of which are no inconsiderable volumes, it 
exerts a mighty influence by the labors of its agents, every one 
ofivho7n is a missionary to all intents and purposes; and 
nearly every one of them too, is a disciple of Calvin, Hopkins 
& CO., though deriving his support from the funds of the 
American Tract Society. "With these facts staring us in the 
face, it would seem very unwise for any Jirmiriian, to con- 
tribute to the support of the society in any way. My 
remarks, concerning this, and other National Societies, 
may, and doubtless will, appear to some, not only uncharita- 
ble, but unworthy a professor of Christianity, not to say a 
minister of the gospel. I frankly confess, that on this sub- 



01? PttfiSfi YTEtllANlSM. 7r 

ject I feel exquisitely; and I assure my readers, that the opin- 
ions herein expressed, have not been given without strict 
examination, and due reflection. I therefore, conscientious- 
ly, enter my most solemn protest against the American 
Tract Society. 

In conclusion, fellow-countrymen, by the holy spirit of 
freedom which animated the breasts of our forefathers, which 
prompted them to resist the arbitrary laws of Great Britain, 
to pass the trying ordeal, and engage in deadly strife with that 
giant-like power, and nerved their arms in battle; by the blood 
which they poured forth as water, drenching the fields of 
death and carnage, and causing the streams to run red: by the 
spirits ot Washington, of Warren, of Green, of Marion, of 
Franklin, of Jefferson, and that immortal band of patriots, 
whose lives, fortunes, and earthly all, were devoted to the 
best interests of man: by the surviving patriots of the revolu- 
tion, and of that righteous struggle which taught Europe's 
despots that even war is a less evil than subjugation and 
slavery: by your own rights which you hold as sacred deposi- 
tories for your children: by the happiness of generations yet 
to come: by the constitution and character of your country, 
assuming the proud pre-eminence of being the asylum for the 
oppressed of all nations: by the issue of the late and great 
^^experimtnf^ of self government in our country, which 
should ever teach us a salutary lesson: by the hopes and pros- 
pects of the universal brotherhood of mankind, and their final 
emancipation and enjoyment of high Heaven's best gift, 
FREEDOM, I adjure you to watch the movement of that am- 
bitious, designing and pestilential phalanx, who aim at de- 
stroying our rights, and to meet with an uncompromising 
spirit of integrity and resistance their detestable machinations. 
Thus averting from our land the baneful influence of a union 
of church and state, and securing to those who come after us, 
the unimpaired prerogative of civil and religious liberty. - 

In conclusion, I cannot refrain from repeating a part of an 
old ode, written by a poet of New York, during the war 
of'96: 

"For ever float that standard sheet! 

AVhere breathes the foe that stands before us, 

With freedom's soil beneath our feet, 

And freedom's banner streaming- o'er us!" 



g2 



T8 HEIiPS TO THE STUDY 



, CHAPTER IX. 

The AMERICAN HOME MISSIONARY SOCIETY — ITS ORIGIN — • 
ITS miNCIPLES AND TENDENCY. 

I AM not one of those fanatics who think that all the world 
of human beings, are to be made Christians and devotees at 
once, and that all duty is to be absorbed in the mere form& 
of religion. 

Nor yet, am I one of those hair-brained fanaticsvvho suppose 
that no moral change can be effected in our world, but through 
1 he instrumentalit)^ of missionaries sent out by a 7ia/i072«/ 50C2e- 
/y. No; but from what I have seen, and from what is daily 
taking place in our world, I believe that well regulated mis- 
sionary societies — societies formed upon j^ure jjrincipleSf. 
and having pure ends in view, may effect great and glorious 
purposes. 

Of the benefits that will arise to the church in general, and 
which have already arisen to the heathens in particular, from 
the labors of pious missionaries, sent out by different associa- 
tions, I believe, that it is impossible to form an exaggerated 
estimate. I fully believe, that the King of Glory, directed 
the energies of the first Protestant missionaries to the heathen 
world. And I likewise believe, that there is no cause more 
worthy of the support, and hearty co-operation of the Chris- 
tian world,, than the cause of missions.. But at the same 
tipe, we should be fully assured of both the health and sanity 
of even a missionary society, before we contribute to its sup- 
port. Man is mentally and corporeally enfeebled by sin, 
and his energies and exploits are immediately connected with 
his depraved state. 

The American Home Alissionary Society, it is well known, 
was first organized in the year 1826. The United Domestic 
Missionary Society of New- York, was organized in the year 
1822; and at the time of the organization of the American 
Home, it had been in pretty successful operation for four 
A ears, and in 1826, reported one hundred and twenty-seven 
missionaries, and one hundred and forty-eight churches and 
congregations, measurably under its control! From this lo- 
cal, though Calvinian Society, the American Home origi- 
nated. But the American Home Missionary Society was 
planned in the city of Boston by the Congregationalists — at 
their request the United Domestic Missionary Society in the 
city of New York, adopted the constitution they had drawn 



OF PRESBTTERIANISM. 79 

up, and forthwith became the American Home. And to the 
great grief of the old Bluestocking Presbyterians, about this 
time, all the domestic missionary societies in New England, 
became merged into, or auxiliary to the American Home. 
And this same American Home, has been, and still is, the 
cause of more grief, pamphlet writing, synodical debates, and 
pulpit and fire side controversies, than any institution con- 
nected with, or in any degree approved of by the Presbyterian 
church. Yes, the attempt on the part of the American Home, 
from time to time, to prostrate or neutralize the General As- 
sembly's Board of Missions, has produced most of those 
disturbances, divisions, heart-burnings and evil-surmisings, 
under which the Presbyterian church has been withering and 
groaning for several years past. But finding that said con- 
troversy, was like to prove to Presbyterianism, what Camp- 
bellism is to the Baptists, they have in a degree moderated. 

In the year 1831, J. L. Willson, D. D. Pastor of the First 
Presbyterian church, in Cincinnati, Ohio, and a man of high 
standing and respectability in said church, published a pamph- 
let entitled '<Four propositions sustained against the claims of 
the American Home Missionary Society.'' The following, 
are his four propositions: — 

*^I. The Lord Jesus Christ has committed the management 
of Christian missions to his church. 

II. The Presbyterian church, being one great family of the 
church of Jesus Christ, is, by her form of government, organ- 
ized into a Christian Missionary Society. 

III. The American Home Missionary Society is not an 
ecclesiastical, but a civil Institution. 

IV. By interference and importunity she disturbs the 
peace and injures the prosperity of the Presbyterian church." 

Thai Mr. Willson has truly <*sustained" these * ^proposi- 
tions," is as clear to the mind of an impartial reader, as the 
mid-day sun; and the clear and forcible manner in which he 
has supported the two last propositions, has done honor to 
both him, and the cause he has so ably advocated. In sup- 
port of the two last propositions, I will give the two foUowirng 
extracts from Mr. Willson 's pamphlet: — 

"That the AraericAa Home Missionary Socrety is not an ecciesiasticai, 
but a aVi7 Institution. 

Ecclesiastical meana belon^ng to the church — civil signifies belonging 
to any person in the commonwealth or body politic. 

This proportion is fully proven by the facts disclosed by the constitution 
of the society. Any per«on with one cent can purchase membership. With 
thirty dollars, can purchase membership for life. The payment of one 



80 HEXPS To THE STtBY 

hundred dollars constitutes any one a director for life. The members, all 
of whom may be worldly men, elect the officers and manag-ers. The con- 
stitution affords no security that any one of the officers or any member of 
the executive committee shall belong- to any church. 

This may be an American association, but it certainly, so far as its consti- 
tution goes, is very unlike that society to which the Lord Jesus Christ has 
committed the manag-ement of Christian missions. 

The corresponding- secretary of this American Home has published that 
she consists of twenty thousand members. These are scattered over vast 
regions of country, and supposing them all pious, they cannot attend the 
annual meetings in New-York, and give their votes at the elections. Sup- 
pose then, that as many of the twenty thousand Infidels, who are said to 
reside in that city, as might be sufficient to control an election, should 
purchase membership for that purpose — is there any thing to prevent them 
from making a board of their own stamp, and taking the control of the 
society into their own hands? Do you say there is no danger? I say, if 
such a movement be practicable, there is danger. The bare possibility 
of such a defeat should teach the friends of the American Home that she 
is built upon the sand. Will you reply, that infidels can join the church 
in order to effect its ruin? Christ has said that the gates of hell shall not 
prevail against it. Can infidels with the same facility reach the Assembly's 
Board of Missions? To change this board, they must not only join the 
church, but become ordained ministers of the gospel, and then be np- 
pointed commissionei-s to the General Assembly, in such numbers as to 
make a majority. How widely different is all this from the easy method 
of purchasing a vote at a popular election by the payment of a mere 
trifle. 

That the American Home Missionary Society, by interference and im- 
portunity, disturbs the peace and injures the prosperity of the Presbyte- 
rian church. 

On this subject I need ask but a few questions. Who disturbed the 
peace of the General Assembly in 1828, when an overture was presented 
for re-organizing the Board of Missions? Who disturbed the peace of 
the Cincinnati Presbytery, when, for years, the brethren had been en- 
gaged, without an instance of discord, in promoting revivals of religion* 
Who produced the evils and distress depicted in the following language? 
*'The evils of the separate operations" [of the two boards] "in this coun- 
try, are increasing with the days, weeks, and months as they pas's> — 
Churches are divided— sessions are divided — and ministers are taking 
different sides — there is much heart-burning — many suspicions and severe 
censures felt and expressed against both boards.^' These are extracts 
from a letter addressed to the committee of the Cincinnati Presbytery, by 
the Rev. N. H. Hall, Rev. John C. Young, and Rev. V. S. Hinkley, and 
dated at Lexington, Kentuck)% August 22, 1830. To each of the above 
questions 1 answer without the fear of a reasonable contradiction, that the 
interference and importunity of the American Home Missionary Society, 
have produced those disturbances, divisions, heart-burnings and suspicions, 
under which the church is withering and groaning. 

These things have not been done in a corner. Many an eye has wept 
— many a heart has bled — and 1 have no doubt but the operations so pro- 
ductive of mischief, stand recorded in that book, which in the great day, 
will disclose the motives of those who sow the seeds of discord and kindle 
the coals of strife among brethren. Disturb the peace of any society, 
and you injure her prosperity. But you injure her still more, if you suc- 
ceed in alienating her friends, and drawing off her resoufces." 



or PBESBYTERIANISM. 81 

In the latter part of the year 1830, or the first of 1831, the 
Rev. A. Peters, corresponding secretary of the American 
Home, published six letters in the Cincinnati Journal, entitled 
'^A plea for Union in the West;'' and in these letters, he not 
only set forth the false claims and boasted pretensions of the 
society under consideration; but he likewise al;used all who 
had dared to speak against it, and labored hard to biing the 
General Assembly's Board into disrepute. To these letters, 
the Presbyterian Board at Philadelphia, replied in a large 
pamphlet entitled, ''An Official Reply of the Board of Mis- 
sions of the General Assembly, to six letters of the Rev. 
Absalom Peters, corresponding secretary of the American 
Home Missionary Society.'' 

From this official document, I extract, and herewith submit, 
the resolutions of the Steubenville and Lancaster Presbyteries* 
in Ohio: ^ 



''RESOLUTION'S OF THE PRESBrTERT OF LANCA3TKR, OHIO, 

Zanesville, October 22, 1830. 
Sessions of the Lancaster Presbytery. 
*'Whereas repeated efforts have been made, and are likely to be re- 
newed, intended to produce an amalgamation of the Assembly's Board 
of Missions and the A. H. M. Society; and whereas this Presbytery do. 
on many accounts, feel opposed to any amalg-amation, which would 
chang-e the principles, character, and responsibility of the Assemblv*s 
Board, — 

Therefore, Resolved, 1st. That "we deem any amalg-amation of these 
Boards, as unnecessary, undesirable, and highly inexpedient. 

2d. That we view with regret and disapprobation, the efforts repeatedly 
made to produce this amalgamation; and hope, for the peace of the 
church, these efforts will be speedily discontinued. 

3d. That a copy of this preamble and these resolutions, be forwarded 
hy the stated clerk, for publication in the Missionary Reporter." 

'*Tothis decision, Messrs. Miles, Putnam and Whitehead entered their 
dissent." 

A true extract. 

[Attest.] jj^MES CuiBSRTsoir, Stated Clerk," 

"RESOLCTIOXS of the PRESBTTERr OF STEUBENVILLE, OHIO. 

Mount Pleasant, October 6th, 1830. 
Sessions of the Presbytery of Steubenville, 
Resolved, unanimously, That we view the transaction of Missionary 
busmess to be especially the duty of the church, in her distinctive cW- 
racter. That we consider the present organization of the Board of Mis- 
sions of the General Assembly, as most consistent with the order which 
sliould be taken in this matter— and hope, that that institution will con- 
tmue and prosper. That it is most proper, that this Presbytery be aii 
Auxiliary to that Board," &c. &c- 
A true extract. 

Chablks Clistoit Beatti, Stated Clirk,^ 



$% HELPS TO THE STUDY 

These formal and official statements may serve to show the 
sentiments entertained by the old Blues in the west, and of 
the manner in which those sentiments have been, from time 
to time, expressed to the General Assembly's Board. I might 
add to these the resolutions of other Presbyteries, and a num- 
ber of communications from influential Presbyterians in the 
west, of about the same import, but I deem it unnecessary. 

Now, in addition to many other things, which may be 
said, and not the least strange of all others either, I beg leave 
to state that, this same American Home Missionary Society, 
though planned by Congregational ministers, was neverthe- 
less sanctioned by some of the greatest Presbyterian clergy- 
men in New-England! Doctor Blythe made, and Doctor 
Richards seconded the motion in the first instance, for the 
adoption of the present constitution of the American Home. 
Why, says the innocent reader, this is strange indeed ! Can 
this be true? And if it be true, that the Congregationalists 
and Presbyterians, were all concerned in getting up this 
society, why has a civil war so to speak, broke out among them 
because of the operations of this society? Alas! this is the 
proper question to be asked, and the mystery to be explained. 
Well, gentle reader, I will explain this whole matter to you 
in few words. And first: Doctors Edwards, Taylor, Porter, 
Woods, and others too numerous to mention, have, for years 
past, desired to spread New-England theology — alias New 
School Divinity — alias Semi-Infidelity, through the whole 
earth; and next, from the very nature and organization of the 
General Assembly's Board, they saw they could not ac- 
complish their ends. Hence, the only alternative left them, 
was, to organize the American Home, and then to get all the 
domestic missionary societies in New-England and elsewhere, 
together with their auxiliaries, to merge into the national 
society; and having all the funds in their hands, and half of 
tJie Presbyterian clergymen in these United States dependant 
on them for a support, they could soon make them orthodox 
in their faith. The motives, therefore, which led to the 
formation of this society, were, as I conceive, of the most cor- 
rupt kind. And even Doctors Alexander and Miller, and 
others, of the ablest Presbyterians in the land, without scaning 
the designs or foreseeing the results, wrote in favor of the 
American Home Missionary Society. ^ 

But, astheagentsofthisinstitution, have visited ourland in its 
length and breadth, every where representing all denomina- 
tions as equally concerned in, and inutually benefitted by its 
operations, I think it proper to state, that there never were 



OF PKESBYTBRIAXISM. S$ 

but THREE denominations connected with it, to wit: Congre- 
gationalists, Presbyterians, and Dutch Reformed— all strictly 
Calvinistic too. 

And these denominations, though Calvinistic, have no 
standard of doctrines. Every man preaches what he pleases, 
from rank Antinomianism, to barefaced Universalism. — 
Hence, some of them teach us, that ^'sinhad a holy origin;'^ 
others s^y, "neither a hoi)?" nor a depraved nature is possible;'' 
— others say, <'God is the first cause and author of all things;" 
— others say, "without disinterested benevolence" we must 
all be lost;" — others say, "every man, by a right use of his 
natural ability'* can save himself; — others say, "Christ died 
only for the elect;" — and others tell us, that he "so died for 
all, that all will be saved." 

It is true, however, that according to the sixth article of 
the constitution, the society ?7ia^ be composed of as many 
different denominations as there are in the United States, 
including Atheists and Deists — for it says expressl}^, "any 
PERSON may become a member of this society by contributing 
annually to its funds." Its officers and directors are to be 
annually appointed by the society, which is thus formed; and 
these officers and directors are to appoint an ex-committee; 
and among the powers of said committee, the following are 
enumerated in the fourth article of the constitution — they 
"shall appoint missionaries, and instruct them as to the field 
and MANNER of their labors; shall have the disposal of the 
funds; shall create such agency or agencies for appointing 
missionaries, and for other purposes, as the interests of the 
institution may require. " Indeed ! Wonderful arrangement 
this!! And what has been done on this plan, or under this 
provision? Why, two such agencies have been established 
in the state of New- York, and one in Ohio, for the whole 
valley of the Mississippi, embracing more than one third of 
ihe population of the Union ! Now, if these features of this 
society, do not represent it as dangerous in every respect, 
then it is impossible for such an institution to have an exis- 
tence. 

In one word, the members of the American Home Mis- 
sionary Society, constitute the society. And the society is 
responsible only to itself. The like is not to be foitnd in all 
the annals of common sense! 

Once more: No man would imagine, without examining 
the list of appropriations, pledges, and outfits, that half as 
much money passed through the hands of the ex-committee 
of this Society, as really does. But for reasans best known 



g^ HELPS TO THE STUD T 

to this Committee, in the Reports of the last three years, we 
are not furnished with data by which the amount of outfits 
can be accurately ascertained. 

In the Society's Report for 1830, \hG pledges given to for- 
ty-two missionaries, for forty-two years service, exclusive of 
outfits, is found to be the moderate sum of sixteen thou- 
sand AND EIGHT HUNDRED DOLLARS ! ! Of these forty- 

two missionaries, eighteen were located in Ohio» The 
amount of a^id pledged to these eighteen men, was the mod- 
erate sum of SEVEN THOUSAND AND TWO HUNDRED DOL- 
LARS!!! This, too, was exclusive of their outfits, which 
amounted to eight hundred and eighty dollars! The 
above exposition, is only given as 3.speci77ien oi the transac- 
tions of this Society, so far as money matters are concerned. 

I wili now disclose an important fact, which at least, is not 
generally known in East Tennessee. It is this: — Almost 
every young Hopkinsian preacher settled in the bounds of 
the East Tennessee Synod, having a school, with one small 
•congregation or more, receives at present, or has received, a 
certain stipulated sum of money from this Society, for his 
labors as a home missionary. And at the same time they 
are getting this money, they either by the suppress^ion of 
truth, ort;he expression oi falsehood, make the impressioji 
upon the minds of the people, that their schools and congre- 
gations are their only means of a support. And this system 
of disguised villainy, is carried on to a greater or less ex- 
tent, in the bounds of all those Synods and Presbyteries 
which favor the American Home. And in some instances, 
money has been collected for the Foreign Board, or the Gen- 
eral Assembly's Board, and afterwards appropriated to the 
American Home ! I was once an eye witness to a transaction 
of this kind; and I intend, in another part of this work, to 
exhibit this case in its true light. This may be an American 
association, but so far as its constitution goes, it is certainly 
very unlike the society to which the Lord Jesus Christ has 
committed the management of Christian Missions. And the 
above proceedings may be in strict accordance with Preshy- 
terianism; but they are certainly at war with that system of 
Gospel truth, which forbids lying and stealing; unless it can 
be made appear, that ^^the truth of God did more abound 
thi*ough their lie." 

This society has now been in existence just long enough ta 
see its ninth anniversary. Its design, according to the con- 
stitution, is, to send missionaries to labor in the ^ ^destitute 
regions'' in the United States. And what regions are desti- 



01? PRESBYTEIHANISM. 85 

lute? I answer, all those regions in which Calvinists do not 
possess a lordly pre-eminence. And who are home mission- 
aries? Why, every one of these little college-bred chaps and 
theological scavengers, who are without regular salaries, or 
other means of a support. In the west, we are miserably 
infested with these missionaries, who go prowling and skulk- 
ing about through our country, from one rich neighborhood 
to'another, making proselytes and begging money. And all 
who do not approach these wandering stars with wide-spread, 
and well replenished pocket books, are looked upon as niggards 
and infidels, and enemies to God. They have crowded in 
upon us till our country is literally overrun with them, and 
our citizens almost begged to death. Request one of these 
pious youths to sing you ^^one of the songs of Zion,'^ and he 
will condescend graciously, to even <^sing the Lord's song in 
a strange land;" but the chorus will he mo net/! money!! 
MONEY!!! And can there be any doubt, but what they 
are guided by sordid views of interest, instead of a generous 
love of truth, or a desire to save souls? And is not the bulk 
of their time spent in trying to invent new, and improved 
patent triggers, for their national gull-traps? And with these 
men, and the denominations which send them out on such 
expeditions, is not tnoney 3ind 2J0wer the great concern? 

To conclude: It is time for us to take an alarm at the state 
of things which already exist— yea, as American citizens, it 
is but prudent jealousy for us to be on our guard, as were our 
forefathers, previous to the dark days of the revolution. 
Our forefathers did not w^ait until Great Britain had riveted 
her yoke on their necks by laws and standing armies — but 
seeing all the consequences in the bills of taxation laid before 
the British Parliament, they denied the principle on which 
the bills were founded; and by thus denying the first princi- 
ples they avoided the disastrous consequences which must 
have ensued. And if, as American citizens, we wish to 
retain our liberties, we must, in the outset, refuse to contribute 
our money to the support of these societies. For it is plain 
to be seen, that the- accumulation of so much money, for such 
purposes, is the first step to the establishment of a rich 
church, a proud, pompous and tithing ministry; which have 
m all countries heretofore, for upwards of fifteen hundred 
years, oppressed mankind and seized from their labor, a com- 
fortable support for a lazy, blind, bigoted, corrupt and perse- 
cuting priesthood. 

I refer you reader, to the history of France, of Spain, and 
more recently, of England and Ireland, for instances of thq 
li 



86 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

effects of the priesthood living and moving and having their 
being in vs^ealih. But what was the condition of the colonies 
in this country before the revolution? Why, the tenth calf, 
pig, colt, lamb, chicken, duck, turkey, &c. or 50,000 pounds 
of tobacco were taken from the industrious farmers by the 
titheman, to support the Presbyterian and Congregational 
clergymen, then in holy orders. And the Hopkinsian minis- 
try, so late as 1826, even in East Tennessee, attempted to 
revive this odious tithing system. They advocated its claims 
both from the pulpit and the press; telling their people in the 
mean time, that unless they would give liberally, the Lord 
would neither prosper them here, nor save them hereafter ! 
And it was not till then, that their members learned why it 
was, they had incorporated into their system of theology, the 
doctrine of disinterested benevolence! The preaching of 
this doctrine is always ominous of a call for money: it is all 
priestcraft, and an invention contrived and carried on by 
Calvinistic priests, for their own power and profit. And I 
say unto all, resist them ! 



CHAPTER X. 

The AMERICAN BIBLE SOCIETY ITS RISE AND PROGRESS — 

IMPRUDENT CONDUCT OF SOME OF ITS AGENTS THE WHOLE 

SOCIETY LIABLE TO BE ABUSED, &C. 

What! the courteous reader is ready to ask, will any one 
oppose a Bible Society? Or, will any one oppose the circu- 
lation of the Scriptures ^*without note or comment?" I hope 
not. At least, I hope never to see a Christian, in any way 
whatever, arrayed against the Bible. For one, at least, I am 
determined, never to be found in opposition to the Scriptures; 
nor yet, to the organization of Bible societies, let them be 
formed by whom they may: provided nevertheless, they are 
established upon principles any where in the neighborhood of 
moral honesty. Indeed why should I? Man, the creature 
of a moment, is destined to live forever. He stands trembling 
on the very verge of eternity, and must soon land in heaven 
or hell. How important, then, that he be instructed in the 
way to happiness! But how is he to learn the way? To 
what source of information must he fly, as an infallible guide 
to happiness and heaven.? I answer, to the Bible — to the 
book of God. And 1 add, there is no other book in this wide 



OF PRBSB YTER1ANI8M. 87 

world, beside the Bible, in which we find either a satisfactory 
idea of our Maker, or the manner in which he should be 
worshipped. It is the Bible only, which teaches us, both that 
God is, and that «'he is a rewarder of them who diligently 
seek him. " And with more truth than ever it may be said : — 

"This sacred book, from heaven bestow'd, 

The apostate world to bless, 
A light to mark the pilgrim's road. 



I would not let this volume lie 

Neglected and unknown, 
For it must raise me to the sky, 

Or bear my spirit down. 

This book reveals a Saviour's charms. 

And life and light restores. 
Secures my soul from death's alarms, 

Or aggravates my woes." 

How great and untiring, then, should our efforts be to dis- 
tribute this invaluable treasure! Should we not go forth, in 
this glorious enterprize, with all the ardor of exertion, and all 
the liveliness of Christian feeling? But time would fail me 
to tell of the general advantages, as to matters of both faith 
and practice, which are derived from the Holy f?criptures. 

Of all the modern efforts to illuminate the world, Bible 
societies hold a high, if not the first place. Such particular 
societies, with particular objects, are excellent. Still, they 
shouldjbe carefully, economically, and vigorously prosecuted; 
and then, not only will good be done by a great and univer- 
sal move, but good feeling and fellowship will be produced 
among Christians of every name. Almost every Christian 
nation has a Bible society. The British and Foreign Bible 
Society is the oldest, most efficient and extensive. This so- 
ciety had printed previous to January, 1816, 640,700 Bibles, 
and 830,432 testaments, besides 25,000 Bibles and 50,000 
testaments purchased on that continent. The expenditures of 
the society at that time, in eleven years, the length of time it 
had been in existence, was 1,549,300 dollars. And, at the 
early period of 1816, the British and Foreign Bible Society, 
had assisted in printing the Bible in sixty-three different lan- 
guages. At so early a date as 1 8 1 6, there were, in the United 
States, 129 Bible societies. And there are, at this time, double 
that number in America; nor would I say too much, if I 
were to assert, that there are now, three times that number. 

With regard to the origin of the American Bible Society, 
I have to say, it was organized in the city of New- York, ia 



8S h:bi.ps to the stitbt 

1816, by delegates from local Bible societies, in various parts 
of America. A board of managers, consisting of thirty- 
six laymen, were appointed, to whom was entrusted the 
management of the society; measures were then taken by 
the board, to procure stereotyped plates, and to prepare Bibles 
and testaments at a low rate, for gratuitous distribution among 
the poor and destitute. This institution, has now been in 
successful operation nearly eighteen years. Since its com- 
mencement, it has issued one million five hundred and 
thirty-three thousand six hundred and sixty-eight copies 
of Bibles and testaments, in seven different languages. From 
the report of 1833, it will be seen, that during that year, it 
issued ninety-one thousand one hundred and sixty-eight 
Bibles and testaments. The number of Bibles and testaments 
issued during this year, was, according to the society's report, 
ninety-one thousand one hundred and sixty-eight. The 
amount expended during the same year, was, eighty -six 
thousand, three hundred and sixty -two dollars! 

So it will be seen, that by the time the salaries of local and 
travelling agents, clerks, &c. are paid by this institution, its 
publications cost the community nearly as much, per copy, 
as they would do, were they to purchase them from the differ- 
ent book stores in our country. Still, they boast of the cheap- 
ness of their publications ! Too much of the people's money 
is, in this vyay, given to these agents, clerks, &c. And this, 
with me, is a weighty objection against the A. B. Society. 
And according to the above calculation, the American Bible 
Society, is certainly a very expensive concern to the com- 
munity. 

As it regards the American Bible Society, so long as it 
circulates the Holy Scriptures, "without NOTE OR COMMENT," 
no church can sustain an injury by its action; and I believe 
that the constitution of this society could be so altered and 
arranged as to bring every religious denomination heartily 
to its aid, and unite every Bible society in our country in a 
truly laudable enterprise. 

But some important alterations, both in its constitution 
and j}olicy\) must be made before this can, or at least will be 
done. For I assert, that under the provisions of its consti- 
tution, any sect, having money enough, can take charge of it, 
and control its operations as they may think proper to do. 
And, asproof of this, permit me to say, that Presbyterians and 
Congregationalists, have almost the entire control of the so- 
ciety at this time, and have had from its commencement. 
But much is said about furnishing the poor with Bibles, 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM 



89 



through the instrumentality of this society. And it is asked, 
who will say that it is wrong to solicit pecuniary aid for such 
a benevolent purpose? I do not say, that this would be wrong. 
But.l do say that it is wrong — a crime of no small magni- 
tude — to solicit money for a declared purpose, and then never 
apply it to that p-irpose. 

The annual meeting of the officers and managers, with the 
delegates, &c. of the American Bible Society, in May, 1833, 
granted to the American board of commissioners, for Foreign 
Missions, the moderate sum of ten thousand dollars!! 
During the same year, and at the same meeting, the society 
granted to the Baptist General Convention in the United 
States, the sum of five thousand dollars! 

And it will not be denied, but that the society has been in 
the constant practice of making these or similar donations 
from the beginning, although some individual members of 
the board of managers have objected to it. But, it will, per- 
haps, be urged, that these appropriations have greatly aided 
these missionary societies in doing good in other lands; and 
that all we aim at is, to do good to the souls of men. But is 
this applying the money to the purpose for which it was col- 
lected? And would it not be less exceptionable lor each 
missionary society to furnish itself from its ownfundsy than 
it is for the American Bible Society to devote any portion of 
its funds directly for those objects? Certainly it would.' For, 
the furnishing of missionary societies, which are purely de- 
nominational in their character, unless it distribute its dona- 
tions equally among all sects, may, and must hazard its 
reputation as a strictly national, and exclusively Bible so- 
ciety; and it is plain to be seen, that so far as a missionary is 
aided in his peculiar work by the liberality of the American 
Bible Society, so far the denomination to which he belongs 
is favored above others. Perhaps, but ^qw, of the many 
Arminians who daily contribute to the support of this insti- 
tution, are aware of the fact, that their money is to be used 
in this way — to aid the cause of Calvinism. 

Again: It is wicked in the sight of God, and that too, in the 
highest degree, to obtain money for the support of any insti- 
tution, by falsehood and misrepresentation. Well,on the 23d 
page of the twelfth annual report of the American Bible 
Society, for 1828, speaking of the progress of the Bible cause 
in Tennessee, the corresponding secretary of the Blount 
county Bible society, writes that they had "commenced ex- 
jpl6ring;" that *'ten captains^ companies had been visited;'' 
thatin G94 families 187 were found to^be ^Hotally destitute^' 
h2 



•2 liELPS TO THE STUDY 

the above-mentioned conduct, to which he replied as fol- 
lows: 

«<New York, 13th Feb,, 1832. 

Dear Sir: — In answer to your letter of the 26th January, 
I have to say that in Oct. 1S30, the Managers of this Soci- 
ety, made to the Macon County Bible Society, a donation 
or grant of 500 Bibles for gratuitous distribution, to ena- 
ble them to supply the families of that county, who were 
destitute, with a copy of the Holy Scriptures each. We 
never interfere with Local Societies, as to the manner in 
which they effect their general instructions. I trust, my 
dear sir, that in effecting this most delightful work in your 
country, there will be no misunderstanding among the friends 
of the Bible. 

Yours very respectfully, 

JOHN NITCHIE.'' 

Now I ask the candid reader, if selling Bibles and Tes- 
taments for *<common trade, or even for cash, at any price 
whatever, can be considered a ^^clonation^^ or the "'gratuit- 
ous distribution'^ of them? And I would also ask the impar- 
tial reader, if the community at large, had not better with- 
hold their support from an Institution which has officially 
acknowledged that it will not <*interfere with Local Societies, 
as to the manner in which they effect their general instruc- 
tions," although this same Institution, caused these Local So- 
cieties to be formed, and has been apprised of their improper 
conduct? 

Last of all : The constant practice of the agents, and friends 
Qi the American Bible Society, in representing all other de- 
nominations as equally concerned in the support and man- 
agement of the Institution, is highly exceptionable — not to 
say wicked. Take for instance, the following paragraph 
from a letter of Dr. Ely's, published in the Philadelphian, 
for Oct. 14, 1831: — <*The American Bible Society, is sup- 
ported by all classes of persons in our countr}^, who believe 
the Bible is the divinely inspired record of God's revelations 
to man; except a few^ high church Episcopalians who would 
never give or sell God's word without a prayer book, of hu- 
man invention attached to it; and the Roman Catholics 
who countenance nothing in English, but a bad translation 
of the Latin Vulgate!" 

The above, is a fair specimen of the Boctor^s accurac7/f 
in collecting and presenting facts. Reader, look at this mat- 
ter, and decide for yourself, and say, whether the Doctor can 
apply to himself the words of & certain historian: — "This is 



OF PEESBTTERIANISM. 9^ 

the disciple which testifieth of these things; and wrote these 
things; and we know that his testimony is true.'' In one 
word, the foregoing extract, contains an iiisinuation, subtil- 
ly conducting the reader to an inference, incorrect and inju- 
rious to the Bible Societies of other denominations. 

The truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, in 
relation to the '^classes" by whom the A. B. Society is ^'sup- 
ported," is summarily contained and comprehensively ex- 
pressed, in the following letter, from the pen of Dr. Bangs. 
I give the letter the more cheerfully, first, because it will 
tend to correct the statements of the agents of the A. B. So-- 
ciety: and next, because it will go to show, that Dr. Bangs 
is not that enemy to this Institution, he is represented to be. 
^^New York, March 17, 1834. 

My Dear Brother: — -In answer to yours of the 3d inst., 
I have to say, that the Board of Managers of the American 
Bible Society, consists of 36 lawmen belonging to different 
denominations, Presbyterians, Protestant Episcopalians, Bap- 
tists and Methodists — and formerly there were two or more 
Quakers, but I think none of that sect now. There are three 
Methodists, but the majority are of the Presbyterian 
Church, as the Protestant Episcopalians da not generally 
give into it. Besides these elected laymen, there are many 
clergymen, of different denominations, who are ex-officio 
members of the board, by their having been made life mem- 
bers of the society. I believe this society is actuated by 
very liberal principles, and is doing much good. We never 
have any disposition here to make war upon it. 

AVishing you much peace and great success in the Gospel 
of Jesus Christ, 

I am yours affectionately, 

N. Bangs. 

Hev. W. G. Broiimlow.'' 

In the preceding remarks, I have not adverted to the par- 
ticular intimacy existing between this society, and that of the 
American Sunday School Union. But having received the 
New York Evangelist, of May 10, 1834, a Presbyterian pa- 
per, since writing the above, in which I find a brief notice of 
XhQ eighteenth Anniversary of the A. B. Society, I will give, 
some few particulars. From this abstract of the ISth Annu- 
al report, it seems that 2,000 testaments have been given to 
the American Sunday School Union, for the use of schools 
in the Western States! and 5,Q00 more for the same purpose 
in the Southern States! ! Besides this, it seems that a vast 
amount of Bibles, testaments, andMOifEYj have been granted 



Q^ HEl^S TO THE STUDY 

for foreign distributions; and that the Society's pledges, 
mentioned in the former report, have all been redeemed. 
The amount of money received from all sources, during the 
year ending May, 1834, is ^88,600 82; of which sum, Isi,- 
052 34, were from the ^a/e of books; ^21,891 80 '^ordinary 
donations ! ! " A queer species oi giving this ! Query? Were 
these ^^ordinary donations''^ intended for the use and sup- 
port of the Sunday School Union; or were they intended for 
the use and support of Foreign Missions and Calvinistic 
preachers? Or, if you please, were they intended for the 
American Bible Society? In vain may this Institution boast 
of sending the scriptures abroad, "without note or com- 
ment,'' while it sends with them, Calvinistic comment a- 
to7's! 

. I submit the foregoing statements and letters, to the read- 
er. Let him examine them, and decide for himself. If he 
be an upright, candid, honorable man — if he have a spark of 
independence in his composition — if he have no sectarian 
collar about his neck — he will say that all is not right in Den- 
mark? There is a mystery hanging about this affair, which 
time alone can develope. That the Presbyterians should, so 
manage, in the organization of all the National Societies, as 
to get a majority of Managers in each Board, even where 
their Church is not the most numerous, is so contrary to what 
might be expected, as to be almost inexplicable. Some may 
feel a backwardness in hazarding an opinion or conjecture on 
the subject, especially when the Bible Society is concerned; 
but for my own part, I confess, I feel no such backwardness. 
Tame acquiescence on the part of other denominations, will 
not do. Let the Presbyterians once enslave us, as they are 
aiming to do, and we may whine, and scold, and murmur, and 
wince, and threaten, and beseech them to condescend, gra- 
ciously to have mercy on us, but it will all be to no purpose. 
They will laugh at our calamity, and wag their heads and 
mock, seeing our fear has come, ^c. It is matter of rejoic- 
ing, however, that so far, the operations of all the national 
societies have been impeded, and to a greater or less extent, 
embarrassed by the action of other Churches. 

In eonclusion, I again say, I am not opposed to Bible 
societies. My daily prayer to God, is, that the blessed pe- 
riod may speedily revolve, when the empire of Christianity 
shall have monopolized the universe; and when the bible, the 
greatest and best of books, shall be more highly appreciated, 
its harmony perceived, its superiority acknowledged, and its 
energy felt by every human soul in this wide world. When^ 



OF PB£SB YTERIAKlSM. 95 

therefore, we see an opening for Bibles in any heathen coun- 
try, let us show our zeal to supply the lack. And while, by 
our exertions to circulate the Bible, we declare our faitli in 
it as the word of God, let us see to it, that our hearts and 
lives are conformed to its precepts. Then may we as Chris- 
tians, fight the battles of the Lord successfully. Then may 
we, 

<*Meetthe sons of nig-ht, 
And mock their vain design." 



CHAPTER XL 

The AMERICAN EDUCATION SOCIETY — ITS RISE AND PRO* 
GRESS ITS PRINCIPLES, &C. 

Education itself, in its most broad and general significa- 
tion, comprehending all the physical, intellectual, and moral 
training, by which a man is prepared in life, for the duties 
thereof, I need not here speak of. Its great importance, and 
its immediate relations to the improvement and happiness of 
mankind, will not be doubted by any, but the ignorant and 
dissolute. And that the future prosperity, and even stability 
of our religious and political system, to a considerable extent 
at least, depends upon the progress of education among us, 
will not be denied. Before the introduction of Grecian 
books and scholars among the Romans, which followed the 
conquest of Macedonia, as the wisest of their writers ac- 
knowledge, their country and language were essentially bar- 
barous — their citizens were warlike and illiterate. Grecian 
literature and arts, in less than one century, repaired the 
ravages of Alexander's wars. During the dark ages, a rem- 
nant of literatui e, so to speak, preserved the little knowledge 
and refinement which survived the ruins of the Roman em- 
pire. And throughout the whole progress of modern litera- 
ture, from its dawn to its present comparative state of perfec- 
tion, it has been the liberal benefactor of mankind. It is 
true, the revival of learning, which followed the reformation, 
infidels vainly hoped would be the destruction of Christianity; 
but it has proved to be one of her warmest and most efficient 
friends. Science, indeed, is purifying Christianity from the 
absurdities connected with her in the dark ages; and refined, 
like gold from the crucible, she is coming forth to glorious 
triumph. I haye long believed that the general prevalence of 



96 fitElPS TO THE STVDIr 

education^ or the improvement of the mind in naturd and 
moral sciences, is of the utmost importance to our race, both 
as it regards their civil and religious welfare, or even domestic 
happiness. Ignorance never produced one item of felicity to 
any mafi; the opinions of the Roman Catholics and Baptists 
to the contrary notwithstanding. And as man is not born 
with innate ideas, all the knowledge he possesses must be 
acquired — if you please Z)orro?^;e^. However, observation, 
conversation, reflection, experience, or reading, must each 
or all be used as the means of acquiring knowledge. But 
knowledge must be had. Without knowledge men cannot be 
of much use to the world. To attain unto it they must give 
themselves to study. Let, therefore, education societies be 
formed; let colleges and seminaries be erected; and let every 
possible lawful means be used to instruct the ignorant, and to 
promote the cause of education, in every clime and country. 
But always let the leading objects, and principal designs, to- 
gether with the distinctive peculiarities and sectarian princi- 
ples of every society, institution, or enterprise, be set forth 
without any sort of disguise. 

The American Education Society, was organized in the 
year 1816, in the city of New-York, and has just issued its 
eighteenth annual report. This is an extensive and efficient 
society, intended solely for the extension of the w^ork of 
nationalizing i\iQ affairs of the United States, under the care 
and control of the Presbyterian and Congregational churches. 
its avowed object, however, is to convert young men, and 
prepare them for the vvork of the ministry, in the destitute 
parts of America. 

During the past year, 113 young men have been supported 
by this society, in theological seminaries; 433 in colleges: 
and 366 in academies and public schools; making in all 912. 
As many as 60 beneficiaries have been licensed to preach dur- 
ing the past year, b)^ this society. Some of them have settled 
in the ministry, with large salaries; others of them have 
visited the <*far west,'^ in the service of the Home Mission- 
ary Society; others are engaged as secretaries and agents for 
the different national societies. From the treasurer's report, 
it appears that the receipts of the society for the past year, 
have been ^57,122 20; nearly eleven thousand dollars greater 
than in any preceding year. The expenditures of the so- 
ciety during the year, have been ^55,861 26. And still, 
the society is reported as being^5,225 71 in debt! 

Remarks. — The two principal objections raised against 
this society are, first, its not recognizing fully a Divine call 



or PRESBTTEUIANISM. 97 

to Ihe ministry; and secondly, its intimate connexion with 
the American Home Missionary Society, making thereby an 
important link in the great chain of operations in the Presby- 
terian and Congregational churches. 

It is proper, then, that the reader should understand dis- 
tinctly, that the Methodist Episcopal church recognizes more 
clearly than the report of this society, the Divine call to the 
ministry. She believes that every true minister is "moved 
by the Holy Ghost to preach the Gospel," and that this call 
of the Holy Spirit ought to be prior to a special preparation 
for the ministry. In a word, she believes that the church 
should educate all her youth, and that God should then be al- 
lowed the liberty of calling from among them, such as he 
may think best calculated for the work. 

But this society is saying too much, when it asserts that a 
Divine call to the ministry, is not of greater importance than 
an accomplished education, or that no man can be a successful 
minister of the cross, without the ability to read the Scrip- 
tures in their own dialect. The names of many a burning 
light of the church, through every age of her eventful history, 
beam forth in glorious refutation of so base a falsehood. The 
truth is, that there is an immense range of theological knowl- 
edge in our language, generally neglected by the Presbyterian 
clergy, and sometimes by even the Biblical critic. Were 
these clergymen to pass through this field oftener than they 
do, they might occupy a position in the varied departments of 
the church, fully as important and as useful as that they have 
derived from the study of the ancient languages. The minis- 
ter of the Gospel may, and should, indeed, make the whole 
intellectual v/orld tributary to his purpose. Indeed, the 
wider the sweep of his studies, the more large will be his 
resources, the more liberal his views, and as a universally 
probable consequence, the more effective his efforts. But in 
this, in all this, the Presbyterian clergy too generally, are 
shamefully deficient, notwithstanding their boasted preten- 
sions, and insulting consciousness of superiority, as daily 
manifested by their conduct. 

But this society, like most of the national societies, is in- 
consistent with the rights of human nature, and especially 
with the rights oi freemen', it is unreasonable, and contrary 
to the spirit and precepts of the Christian religion, and ini- 
quitous and unjust in all its operations. Fellow-citizens, is 
it so, that we must be gulled out of our money and influence, 
and thus forced to aid in propagating tlie doctrines of John 
Calvin, and his crazy adherents ! Must we bow to those, who 
I 



96 fitElPs 'TO *tn% sTVat 

education^ or the improvement of the mind in natufdl and 
moral sciences, is of the utmost importance to our race, both 
as it regards their civil and religious welfare, or even domestic 
happiness. Ignorance never produced one item of felicity to 
an^ ma6; the opinions of the Roman Catholics and Baptists 
to the contrary notwithstanding. And as man is not born 
with innate ideas, all the knowledge he possesses must be 
acqnired — if you please 5orro?^eG?. However, observation, 
conversation, reflection, experience, or reading, must each 
or all be used as the means of acquiring knowledge. But 
knowledge must be had. Without knowledge men cannot be 
of much use to the world. To attain unto it they must give 
themselves to study. Let, therefore, education societies be 
formed; let colleges and seminaries be erected; and let every 
possible lawful means be used to instruct the ignorant, and to 
promote the cause of education, in every clime and country. 
But always let the leading objects, and principal designs, to- 
gether with the distinctive peculiarities and sectarian princi- 
ples of every society, institution, or enterprise, be set forth 
without any sort of disguise. 

The American Education Society, was organized in the 
year 1816, in the city of New-York, and has just issued its 
eighteenth annual report. This is an extensive and efficient 
society, intended solely for the extension of the work of 
nationalizing ih.e affairs of the United States, under the care 
and control of the Presbyterian and Congregational churches. 
Its avowed object, however, is to convert young men, and 
prepare them for the work of the ministry, in the destitute 
parts of America. 

During the past year, 113 young men have been supported 
by this society, in theological seminaries; 433 in colleges : 
and 366 in academies and public schools; making in all 912. 
As many as 60 beneficiaries have been licensed to preach dur- 
ing the past year, b}^ this society. Some of them have settled 
in the ministry, with large salaries; others of them have 
visited the *'far west,'^ in the service of the Home Mission- 
ary Society; others are engaged as secretaries and agents for 
the different national societies. From the treasurer's report, 
it appears that the receipts of the society for the past year, 
have been ^57, 122 20 ; nearly eleven thousand dollars greater 
than in any preceding year. The expenditures of the so- 
ciety during the year, have been ^55,861 26. And still, 
the society is reported as being $5,225 71 in debt! 

Remarks. — The two principal objections raised against 
this society are, first, its not recognizing fully a Divine call 



OF pRESBTTEltlANlSM. 97 

tio the ministry; and secondly, its intimate connexion with 
the American Home Missionary Society, making thereby an 
important link in the great chain of operations in the Presby- 
terian and Congregational churches. 

It is proper, then, that the reader should understand dis- 
tinctly, that the Methodist Episcopal church recognizes more 
clearly than the report of this society, the Divine call to the 
ministry. She believes that every true minister is "moved 
by the Holy Ghost to preach the Gospel,'' and that this call 
of the Holy Spirit ought to be prior to a special preparation 
for the ministry. In a word, she believes that the church 
should educate all her youth, and that God should then be al- 
lowed the liberty of calling from among them, such as he 
may think best calculated for the work. 

But this society is saying too much, when it asserts that a 
Divine call to the ministry, is not of greater importance than 
an accomplished education, or that no man can be a successful 
minister of the cross, without the ability to read the Scrip- 
tures in their own dialect The names of many a burning 
light of the church, through every age of her eventful history, 
beam forth in glorious refutation of so base a falsehood. The 
truth is, that there is an immense range of theological knowl- 
edge in our language, generally neglected by the Presbyterian 
clergy, and sometimes by even the Biblical critic. Were 
these clergymen to pass through this field oftener than they 
do, they might occupy a position in the varied departments of 
the church, fully as important and as useful as that they have 
derived from the study of the ancient languages. The minis- 
ter of the Gospel may, and should, indeed, make the whole 
intellectual world tributary to his purpose. Indeed, the 
wider the sweep of his studies, the more large will be his 
resources, the more liberal his views, and as a universally 
probable consequence, the more effective his efforts. But in 
this, in all this, the Presbyterian clergy too generally, are 
shamefully deficient, notwithstanding their boasted preten- 
sions, and insulting consciousness of superiority, as daily 
manifested by their conduct. 

But this society, like most of the national societies, is in- 
consistent with the rights of human nature, and especially 
with the rights oi freemen-, it is unreasonable, and contrary 
to the spirit and precepts of the Christian religion, and ini- 
quitous and unjust in all its operations. Fellow-citizens, is 
it so, that we must be gulled out of our money and influence, 
and thus forced to aid in propagating tlie doctrines of John 
Calvin, and his crazy adherents ! Must we bow to those, who 
I 



9S HELPS TO THE STUDY 

would bring all opinions down to the sordid level of their 
own, and force the manhood of the human mind to continue 
in the swathing bands of a perpetual infancy? 

No say you : 

* 'Strip black oppression of her deep disguise, 
And bid her form in native horror rise." 

But it is for you, it is for the friends of the Bible, and of 
American freedom, to answer the above questions. Blessed, 
thrice blessed is he, who is faithful to the liberties of his coun- 
try, and to the religion of his God. 



CHAPTER XII. 

The AMERICAN board of commissioners for foreign mis^ 

SIGNS — THE RISE AND PROGRESS OF THIS SOCIETY— ITS 
TRUE CHARACTER, &C. 

The age in which we Hyc, is no less distinguished by the 
splendor of its gracious illuminations, its soul-animating chari- 
ties, and expansive benevolence, than by the unprecedented 
improvement in the sciences, and in the arts of civilized life. 
And when we calmly and dispassionately consider, both the 
capacity and constitution of the human mind, contrasting at 
the same time, the present with the early ages of the world, 
we must cease, in a great measure at least, to be any longer 
astonished at the wonderful developments of mechanical and 
intellectual attainments; and by this means, we shall be pre- 
pared for the contemplation of a progressive, and a still more 
magnificent display of human power and human genius, in 
generations to come. But, perhaps, nothing distinguishes 
this age more than the rapid advance of the missionary/ spirit 
and enterprise among all evangelical denominations. 

These glorious efforts are greatly facilitated by the commer- 
cial enterprise, general intercourse, and the wide extension 
of liberal feelings and sentiments, which are so prominent in 
this age. This whole picture is one of the brightest beneath 
the sun, and while it enlarges and settles the confidence of 
the Christian churches in at least the practicability of evan- 
gelizing the world, it must cause infidels, and all who are 
opposed to the spread of Christianity, to "exceedingly fear 
and quake." For if the advance of this glorious work, shall 
be after the same ratio for the next twenty years, as the last 
twenty, the infidel will sit down in despair, and will conclude 



OF pRESBYtEaiAXISM. 99 

feo give up his ship for lost. Of the increase of the missionary 
spirit in this country, there are many indications. The oc- 
currences of every day, shew, that the all-important truth is 
more and more intelligently and practically embraced, that the 
church was constituted by its divine Head, and its individual 
members were redeemed by his precious blood,and renovated by 
the Spirit, and are preserved in faith and hope, and blessed in 
providence — not chiefly, that they may have the comforts of 
this life, and the consolations of piety, and be fitted for and 
ultimately received to heaven — but that they may be <^the 
salt of the earth'^ and 'Hhe light of the world" — the means 
of diffusing, as extensively and rapidly as possible, the knowl- 
edge and blessings of true religion, among all mankind. 

But while I would pray, that great success may ever at- 
tend the praiseworthy efforts of all the Christian churches; — 
and while I would eulogize i\\Q •American Foreign Mission 
ary Society, for what it has done, I must be permitted, seri- 
ously, to object to both the principles and past conduct of the 
institution. This institution was organized in Boston, in 
1809, — twenty-five years ago; and the society has ever been 
under the entire control oi the Presbyterian and Congrega- 
tional churches. In a "report on foreign missions, read to, 
and adopted by the General Assembly of the Presbyterian 
church in the United States," in May, 1832, the following 
proposition is made, and various arguments are brought for- 
ward to sustain it: — " The American Board of Commission- 
ers, for Foreign Missions is, in the opinion of the com- 
mittee^ properly a national institution.^^ 

One argument adduced in this report to prove that this 
society is truly national in its character is, because "the board 
sustains the same relation to the Congregational, Presbyterian, 
and Dutch Reformed churches, and fairly represents each of 
these religious denominations. " 

This report, it must be recollected, is the production of a 
joint committee of conference from the Presbyterian General 
Assembly, and the American Board of Commissioners for 
Foreign Missions, and therefore, may be regarded as express- 
ing the opinion of both these bodies in reference to this sub- 
ject. It is further urged by this committee, in support of 
this proposition, that, from the time of this society's incor- 
poration by the legislature of Massachusetts in 1821, it has 
embraced members of the above named three denominations! 
What, in the opinion of this committee, constitutes its na- 
tionality? Why, because the Presbyterian, Congregation- 
alists, and Dutch Reformed churches are "fairly represented" 



iOO HBiPS TO THE STUDY 

in it. This is the ground of the conclusion. But do these 
three denominations represent the American nation? From 
the language of this report, coolly, deliberately, and gravely 
adopted, it would seem as if they really thought there were 
no other denominations of Christians in America? 

But what is more singular still, this report argues that there 
should be but one <<society in this country for the manage- 
ment of foreign missions/' Still, there is the Assembly's 
Board of Missions^ the Western Foreign Alissionari/ So- 
ciety, and the Central and Southern Board of Missio72S, 
recently organized within the synods of Virginia, North Ca- 
rolina, South Carolina, and Georgia, all of which, are in 
successful operation, under the control of the Presbyterians, 
and by them, made to co-operate with this society! How 
very inconsistent they are who talk thus! But I will now 
allude, briefly, to some three or four of tlie most weighty 
objections, which, in my judgment, lie against this society. 
First, the board of managers for this institution, profess to 
employ all the means put within their control, for the benevo- 
lent purpose of both civilizing and christianizing the heathen. 
But, the missionaries whom they send out for this purpose, 
being Calvinists to a man, palm upon the poor heathen a 
most barbarous and ungodly system ; and so far from improving 
their condition, they invariably make it worse. For I assert^ 
without any sort of disguise, that the whole world of man- 
kind, had better remain in Pagan darkness, than to be brought 
under the influence of Calvinism; for they would then, 
^^having not the written law," be ''a law unto themselves." 

vSecondly, this society, in its operations, is entirely too ex- 
pensive. The highest estimate of the present population of 
the world is 900,000,000. Now, 450 millions, or one half 
of the whole population, are Pagan; the Christian population 
at the highest calculation, is only 300 millions, and the rest 
are Jews and Mahometans. So that 600,000,000, or two 
thirds of the whole population, are yet to be converted to the 
Christian religion. 

Well, look at the number of souls, reported by this society, 
as having been brought under the influence of Christianity, 
during the time of its operations; next, look at the amount 
of money expended during that time, in order to effect the 
conversion of those souls; and it will be seen, in view of the 
millions who are still in darkness, that there is not enough of 
the precious metals in the bowels of the whole earth, to con- 
vert the world, in the hands of the American Board of Com- 
missioners for Foreign Missions! If, I say, the demands of 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 101 

this institution are to be complied with, the Spanish mines, 
the North Carolina and Georgia gold mines, and all other 
mines under the whole heavens, must be ransacked to their^ 
utmost extremity ! . , . 

Hence, we should study to conduct both foreign and domes- 
tic missions, on a less expensive plan. 

In secretary Cass's report to congress, for the year 1833, 
he states that in fulfilment of a stipulation on the part of the 
o-enerai government, ^11,615 had been paid to this board, to 
enable them to complete their establishments among the 
Cherokees of Arkansas; and on the next page of this same 
document, the writer says:— "The Methodist Episcopal 
church has instituted missions among the Shawnees, Dela- 
wares, and Peorias, with her own resources unaided by the 
government.''^ The secretary of war, it is very evident, 
?n tended the American Board to feel this rebuke. In travell- 
ing tlirough the Indian nation, I have viewed with astonish- 
ment the superstructures and stately edifices, reared up by 
this board. To pass by and see their mills, shops, and other 
machinery in operation, one would think their desires to 
monopolize the wealth of the nation much stronger, than 
those of changing the hearts of the poor Indians from nature 
to o-race. And it has more than once been the case, that after 
tlie missionaries belonging to this establishment have acquired 
a salliciency of the mammon of unrighteousness, they have 
removed to more agreeable sections, leaving behind thena 
their costly buildings to moulder until the antiquarian shall 
deem them worthy of reparation. I do not wonder w-hen 
such missionaries fail to benefit those among whom they labor. 
In their intercourse with the natives, they are not actuated by 
a desire to do them good, but merely to benefit themselves by 
traffic. Instead of being moved by those high, commanding, 
and philanthropic views which dictate the conduct of holy 
and benevolent Christian missionaries, they are actuated by 
merely mercenary motives to enrich themselves on the spoils 
of the simple natives. These, therefore, are <'wolves in 
sheep's clothing," who seek not the good of the flock scat- 
tered in the wilderness, but are eager only to fleece themselves 
with their wool. Many of my readers in East Tennessee, 
wiW doubtless long recollect the shameful whiskey, blanket, 
and fur-skin expeditions of the Rev. Gideon Blackburn. But 
the day of judgment alone, will explain the manner in which 
Mr. B. disposed of the five thousand dollars of Indian annui- 
ties, placed in his hands by the government. 

This inconsistent conductof Christian missionaries, debased 
i2 



102 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

and corrupted as they are by these vices, most unequivocally 
condemned by that very religion which they professed, has 
always been one of the greatest barriers in the way of the 
' sincere missionary. And could we present to the heathen no 
better example of the good effects of our religion, than has 
been and still is exemplified by such inconsistent missionaries, 
wc might at once despair of exerting any salutary influence 
on the pagan world — as we should then have no sufficient 
argument to repel the objections of our enemies — at least no 
argumient derived from the supreme excellence of Christianity 
in its practical effects upon their hearts and lives. But, 
blessed be God ! all are not thus inconsistent. There are 
those in heathen lands, in whom the Spirit of God dwells.' 
whose tempers, words and actions proclaim the genuineness 
of their religion — whose whole deportment evinces that there 
is a reality in religion. 

The last, though not the least objection I would bring for- 
Vv^ard against this society, is, it is a national society. Its 
object is, to have the same influence in the religious world; 
that their other societies have. The declared objects of these 
societies, are but secondary; their rew/ objects lie beyond the, 
view of superficial observation — they aim ^ireligious svpre- 
onacy! To carry on this scheme, the clergy have succeeded, 
by art and deception, in obtaining the countenance of some 
of the first men in our country, who, I doubt not, from their 
well known talents, honesty and integrity, would gladly rid 
themselves, by this time, of the cause they have been led by 
the clergy to approve; and would do it speedily, were it not for 
the fear of incurring their displeasure, and of exposing their 
political prosperity to be blasted by their sectarian anathe- 
ip.as. 

The easier to effect, and the more certainl}^ to ensure the 
vsuccess of their plans, they have invited people of all persua- 
sions to join their institutions; and, in many instances, they 
have appointed ministers of other orders to important stations 
in their societies — thus trying to make it appear that their 
grand scheme is not a party concern. All this, they tery 
well know, they can do, with the most perfect safety to their 
own plans and cause; for if there should beany who should 
presume at any time to oppose their measures, being by far 
the minority, it would be no difficult task to shuffle such off 
at will; while those who acquiesce in 2\\ things, they intend 
to promote. 

Reader, a man must be stupid, indeed, not to see that all the 
schemes of the Presbyterians, which I have named, and many 



or PRESBTTERIAXISM. 103 

Others, which I intend to name, no matter what their declared 
objects may be, have for their scope and end one grand pur- 
pose, universal empire — religious supremacy — a union of 
church and state! If they should finally succeed in their 
grasp at supremacy, what may we rationally calculate will be 
the consequence? I tremble when I think of the more than 
probable results. Former scenes of cruelty, such as were 
experienced in the days of John Calvin, would doubtless be 
practised upon those who should dare to oppose any of their 
unhallowed measures. 

Do you believe, gentle reader, that they would permit those 
who differ v/ith them in sentiment, quietly to meet to wor- 
ship, agreeably to the dictates of their own consciences, the 
God of our fathers? — peaceably to possess and enjoy religious 
liberty, to publish their sentiments to the world, and to have 
and to hold meetinghouses, in which to propagate and defend 
the same? No; our religious liberties, I awfull}^ fear, would 
be limited to the bolts and bars of a prison! But, there is a 
chance yet left, to avert the impending ruin with w^hich we 
are menaced. Let us then seize upon the present moment; 
delay not, lest by procrastination we loose our all. 



CHAPTER XIII. 

Tee AMERICAN TEMPERANCE SOCIETY ITS RISE AND PRO- 
GRESS— ITS DESIGN, &C. &C. 

This society was instituted at Boston, Feb. 1S26. Its 
object is to collect and publish facts respecting the amount and 
the cost of intoxicating liquors consumed; the number of in- 
temperate persons, the effects of intemperance in destroying 
health, reason and life, and occasioning pauperism, crime, and 
wretchedness in the community; and to organize auxiliaries 
in towns and villages, whose members agree to abstain from 
the use of such liquors, except as a medicine. Seven reports 
of the society, and many other publications have been issued, 
abounding with such facts as show the evil ot intemperance to 
,be great and alarming. From the report of the annual meet- 
ing of the American Temperance Society, for 1834, it seems 
that there are 7,000 temperance societies in America, and 
1,200,000 members of temperance societies; 3,000 distilleries 
have ceased their operations; 7,000 drunkards have been 
reclaimed. There are said to be 100,000 members of tern- 



104 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

perance societies in Great Britain and Ireland; and the cai;5€ 
is said to be progressing in Sweden, Russia, Madras in India, 
New Holland, and South Africa. 

Amidst the clamors of opposition which have been raised 
against Methodism, no one charge preferred against the mem- 
bers and friends of the Methodist church, as yet, is more 
illiberal or unfounded than that of their being opposed to the 
temperance cause — the cause of benevolence and humanity. 
It is known to all, who are at all acquainted with our history, 
that the temperance reformation in our church, commenced 
in the youthful days of Mr. Wesley. If those who bring 
this charge against us, will take the pains to examine the 
writings of Mr. Wesley, or the discipline of our church, 
they will find that we are no more opposed to temperance than 
we are to Methodism, or to the word of God. The Metho- 
dist Episcopal church has always been a temperance society, 
and has, indeed, made it a term of church communion not to 
use ardent spirits ^^except in cases of necessity.^' The reso- 
lutions of our last General Conference will show, clearly, the 
light in which we view the subject of temperance. And it is 
intended at our next General Conference, to be held in Cincin- 
nati, in May, 1836, to make entire abstinence d, condition of 
membership in our church. Let any one of my readers, turn 
to the first volume of the Christian Advocate and Journal, 
edited by Dr. Bangs, and published for the Methodist church 
in the United States, and he will find a series of essays on 
this subject, in w^hich the practice of total abstinence was 
strenuously maintained. From that time onward until the 
present, both from the pulpit and the press, the Methodist 
clergy have been the steady advocates of the temperance 
cause, and it is hoped will so continue while the shameful 
and disgraceful vice of intemperance shall find a solitary ad- 
vocate. And as long as the American Temperance Society 
is defended and supported by voluntary associations, the 
Methodist church will rejoice in its prosperity. But when 
^Y^Y money must be collected, through agents, for the purpose 
of furnishing employment to men who would otherwise be 
unemployed as preachers of the Gospel, and notioT the sake 
of the object of the society, separately considered, then we ^ 
will go against the society. And I predict, that the time is 
not far distant, when the Presbyterians will take charge of 
the society, and appoint s/om«/ a^en/^ for this very purpose. 

The Presbyterians, indeed, several years since, took uponi 
themselves to say that Methodist preachers generally, were> 
opposed to the teraperaaco ciiuse, merely for the reason thati 



OF PRBSBTTERIANISM, 105 

they did not themselves join nor advise their members and 
friends to join the national society. I allow, indeed, that 
as a body, they never did themselves unite with, nor advise 
their friends to join the American Temperance Society, not 
because they ever felt the least particle of opposition to the 
eiSbrts of that society to put down the use of ardent spirits, 
far and near, and among all classes of people, but simply be- 
cause they thought they could more effectually serve the cause 
in their own way, and they think they have not been disap- 
pointed. Besides, I hope never to see a Methodist manifest 
the intemperate zeal of a crazy enthusiast, or like the Pres- 
byterians do, to transcend the bounds of liberality and mode- 
ration in the advocacy of this, or of any other cause. 

As Methodists, let our motto be moderation! On the 
subject of temperance, the Presbyterians may be regarded as 
a race of wild enthusiasts, or as a set of infatuated fanatics, 
who suffer themselues to be transported by their mad zeal 
beyond the bounds of every thing like moderation, into the 
hide-bound regions of Calvinistic intolerance. This is not 
the way to produce unanimity of sentiment, or harmony of 
feeling. Where ever I have heard a Presbyterian on the 
subject of temperance, I have heard denunciations thundered 
against all those who have refused Lo join this society; and I 
have heard wrath without any mixture of mercy, poured out 
upon all who either make or sell liquor, in any way ! And all 
who do not join with them, in their reproachful denunciations, 
and help them to sweep down into the lowest depths of igno- 
miny and ruin, many well-meaning, honest, and worthy 
citizens, who are unfortunately engaged in distilling and sell- 
ing spirits, are themselves, doomedto an eternal hell, as being 
rather too degraded to associate v/ith the ordinary spirits of 
perdition! These people, on the subject of temperance, are 
exact to a degree of scrupulosity, and still, in various other 
matters, they neglect the most important points of the law of 
God ! I have no doubt, myself, but what many well-meaning 
persons are engaged in making and selling ardent spirits, un- 
der the belief that their calling is lawful, inasmuch as it is 
not prohibited, but only regulated, by the law of the land. 
I confess, however, that 1 have very little charity for a man, 
who, after he has been convinced of the o-reat evil of distillino- 
or selling spirits, will continue the practice. And a drunkard, 
in my estimation, is the most contemptible being in God's 
universe. In the mean time, if we would succeed in the 
temperance reformation, we must strike at the root of all 
vice, the heart of the sinner and the nominal professor, and 



106 HEXPS TO THE STUDY 

neve^^xtesise until U be made clean. Let those eiders, md 
other members of the Presbyterian church, who are accus- 
tomed to get so drunk that they can't even navigate a com- 
mon wagon-road, keep cool on the subject of temperance ! 
And if the Presbyterians, as a body, wish to promote the cause of 
temperance, let them, in future, be more consistent; — let them 
show their faith by their works. For, notwithstanding 
they are the first to fulminate anathemas against all dram- 
drinkers and whiskey-makers; yet, in an election, they will 
conspire against a Methodist candidate of the first talents and 
moral worth in the country, and vote for an habitual drunkard, 
a liar, a dcfrauder, and a whore-monger! Wonderful in- 
fatuation! strange delusion! But what better can we expect 
of persons born and raised in the Dismal Swamp of Cal- 
vinian decrees? hypocrisy! thou brat of hell, how I hate 
thee! You mingle in all society — but you are particularly 
fond of temperance societies! You deck your visage in 
smiles and dimples, and affect friendship for the purpose of 
your hate! But your smile is the smile of deception; the 
poison of asps is under your tongue, cursing and bitterness 
follow in your train, and your feet-^re swift to do works of 
mischief. There is treachery in the affected meekness of 
your eyes; j'our honied words are but as drops of liquid fire, 
and your whispers of kindness and moderation, as the gro- 
tesque howling of the fierce hyena, that thirsts for blood! I 
must close, though in pursuing this subject, *^hills on hills, 
and Alps on Alps arise.'^ 

As it respects the Baptists, they are, in the general, 
avowed enemies to the temperance reformation. Poor crea- 
tures! they are, at best, about a century behind the march of 
mind, and their dynasty is unpopular. Besides, custom 
seems to have given both preachers and members of this de- 
nomination, a license to diversify, and give zest to a perpetual 
round of drunkenness. Hence, they will church Priest or 
Levite, for the sin of joining the temperance society! 

In conclusion, those of every name, who sneer at the for- 
mation of temperance societies, by contemptuously calling 
them ^^cold water combinations," betray a lightness of spirit 
incompatible with the sober earnestness with which the friends 
of humanity have attempted to check the progress of an e,\i\ 
of such magnitude as is the hydra of intemperance. . Let all 
come up to the help of the Lord against the mighty; and let 
the reformation be thoroughly pursued until intemperate liv- 
ing of all sorts and sizes, in doctrines and practice, in eating, 
sleeping, dressing, and the employment of time, find no 



OF FRESBTTEKIANI9M. 107 

apdogist, nor refuge in the sanctuary of God, either among 
ministers or people. 

And reader, while you and I live, may the consideration 
of having lived temperate aflford us abiding joy; and when 
we close our eyes upon the world, to sleep the sleep of death, 
may the same consideration compo?=e us; and when the morn- 
ino- of eternal day breaks in upon the universe, may our hopes 
'be realized, in full and blissful fruition, for the Redeemer's 
sake. — Amen, 



CHAPTER XIV. 

The AMERICAN COLONIZATION SOCIETY — ITS RISE AND PKO- 
GRESS — TfiE SUBJECT OF SLAVERY CONSIDERED. 

This society was instituted in the city of Washington, in 
1816. The colony at Liberia, extends along the western 
coast of Africa, a distance of about 280 miles in length, and 
from about 20 to 30 miles inland. It contains now about 
3,000 colonists. They have Methodist, Baptist, and Presby- 
terian missionaries there, all of whom have houses of worship, 
and organized churches. Five years of preliminary opera- 
tions %vere requisite for surveying the coast — propitiating the 
natives— and selecting the most eligible site. Numerous 
agents were subsequently employed — ships chartered — -the 
€oast cleared — schpols, factories, hospitals, churches, govern- 
ment buildings and dwellings erected— and the many expenses 
requisite were defrayed, &c. &c. As early as the year 1777, 
Mr. Jefferson formed a plan for colonizing the free colored 
population of the United States. The particulars of his plan 
I have not been able to obtain. In the year 1787, Dr. Thorn- 
ton, of Washington, formed a plan for the same purpose. In 
the year 1800, Mr. Monroe, then governor of the state of 
Virginia, endeavored through the President of the United 
States, to obtain from the powers of Europe possessed of 
colonies on the coast of Africa, an asylum to which our 
.emancipated negroes might be sent. In December, 1816, at 
which time this society was formed, a considerable number 
of citizens, very nearly all slave holders, convened at Wash- 
ington, to take the subject into consideration. Long debates 
ensued. Henry Clay, John Randolph, of Roanoke, and 
various other powerful orators, addressed the meeting in sup- 
port of the plan. More recently, there have been legislative 



iOS ilElii^S TO THE STUBf 

proceedings in favor of the society, by Connecticut, New-- 
Jersey, Kentucky, Delaware, Massachusetts, Virginia, Ten- 
nessee, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Indiana. — By the Gen- 
eral Conference of the Methodist Episcopal church— And 
by the General Assembly of the Presbyterian church. 

The colony has arrested the progress of the nefarious and 
accursed slave trade in its neighborhood; destroyed some slave 
factories, and liberated a number of slaves who were on the 
point of being transported across the Atlantic, subject to all 
the horrors of the passage, and, if they escaped with life, to 
the horrors of perpetual slavery; and there cannot be a doubt 
that at no distant period the trade will be annihilated on the 
whole of the western coast of Africa. 

This colony, besides other benefits it hopes to confer on 
Africa, is expected to exert a powerful influence against the 
slave trade. The colony has already done much, and will do 
vastly more, for the suppression of this atrocious trade. 
Notwithstanding the efforts of the chief maratime powers of 
Europe, and those of the United States, to suppress this 
traffic, there were, from two towns, Muney and Pangas, 352 
cargoes of slaves taken, during the year 1831. 

The slave trade was commenced by the Portuguese, as 
early as the year 1454; and the whole number of slaves ex- 
ported from Africa since that period, is estimated at 20,000,- 
000 !! And the cruelties attending this trade are probably 
greater now than at any former period. Such is the merciless 
treatment of the slaves, that no fancy can picture the horrors 
of the voyage. Crowded together so as not to have the power 
to move — linked one to the other by the leg — never unfet- 
tered while life remains, or till the iron shall have fretted the 
flesh almost to the bone — forced under alow deck — breathing 
an atmosphere the most putrid and pestilential — with little 
food and less water — at the same time, subject to the most 
severe punishment, at the caprice of the brute or demon who 
may command the vessel. The blood broils in my veins 
while I write; I dare not pursue the subject any further. 

Soil and climate of Liberia. — The soil is not exceeded 
for fertility, or productiveness, when properly cultivated, by 
any soil in the world. The hills and plains are covered with 
perpetual verdure. The productions of the soil go on through- 
out the year. The natives of Liberia, know nothing about 
winter. The natives raise more produce than they can con- 
sume, and frequently more than they can sell. 

The true character of the African climate, is not understood 
in other countries. Its inhabitants are as robust, to say the 



OF PttB^BTTERIANISM. 109 

least, a« healthy, and as long lived, as those of any other 
<;ountry. 

Nothing like an epidemic has ever appeared in the colony 
—nor can we learn, that the calamity of a sweeping sickness 
ever yet existed in this part of the world. But the change 
from a temperate to a tropical climate, is a great one — too 
great not to effect the health, more or less — and in the case 
of old people, and quite young persons, it often causes death. 
In the first settlement of this colony, want of good houses, 
great fatigues, irregular mode of living, &c. on the part of 
the colonists, greatly helped the other causes of sickness, 
which prevailed so extensively, and caused such great mor- 
tality. But those days have gone by. Seldom, if ever 
<loes a person die, from the middle and southern states, from 
the change of climate. 

Commerce and productions. — The commerce of Liberia, 
though in its infancy, is nevertheless respectable, and is an- 
nually increasing. A trading company has been formed at 
INIonrovia, the metropolis of the colony. The port of Mon- 
rovia, is seldom clear of European and American vessels, 
loading and unloading. The imports consist of an assort- 
ment of the productions of Europe, the West Indies and 
America. The exports are rice, palm oil, ivory, tortoise 
shell, dye wood, gold, hides, wax, and coffee. Coffee and 
cotton grow spontaneoysly. Indigo and the sugar cane suc- 
ceed, and will be cultivated to great advantage. The timber 
of Liberia is various and durable, and well adapted to build- 
ing. Camwood, as it is called, is abundant, and mahogany 
grows at the cape, in great abundance. 

In a word, in no respect scarcely, is Liberia surpassed by 
any country in the world. And there is not, I verily be- 
lieve, another benevolent enterprize on earth, so well calcu- 
lated to secure the favorable opinion and enlist the hearty good 
will ot ALL MEN, as this is, when its objects and bearings are 
fully understood. 

"From Greenland's icy mountains, 

From India's coral strand, 
Where Afric's sunny fountains, 

Roll down their golden sand; 
From many an ancient river, 

From many a palmy plain, 
They call us to deliver 

Their land from errors' chain." 

But the anti-slavery and abolition societies of the Northern 
and Eastern states, in their mad zeal to improve the condition 
of the slave population of this country, are like to injure, 
K 



110 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

seriously, the American Colonization Society. Also, the 
society was injured by, in 1833, appointing a Presbyterian 
clergyman, governor of the colony. And although this par- 
son was removed from office, at the request of the other de- 
nominations who had missionaries there, still, himself and his 
brethren, are desirous to have the whole management of the 
colony. With the Presbyterians it is, and always has been, 
bell-weather or no sheep. And if ever the benevolent scheme 
of this society is defeated, I will venture to predict that Pres- 
byterianism will defeat it. 

Certain clerical incendiaries, of the Presbyterian order, 
natives of New-England, falsely called philanthropists, are 
now busily engaged in lecturing upon the immediate emanci- 
pation of the Southern States. 

I am not a slave holder, and 1 pray God I never may bev 
I lament the evils of slavery as much as any other man, but I 
deprecate most sincerely the idea of immediate or sudden 
emancipation, as lam well aware that it tends to the murder 
and robbery of thousands of the slave holders, and the abso- 
lute starvation of even a greater number of the emancipated 
slaves. 

The reader will not regard me as denying the truth of the 
proposition which asserts that slavery is an evil, and a great 
evil at that, and an evil which, by the bye, is condemned by 
the law of God, and ought not to be sanctioned by any who 
regard the Bible as a true history of God. To prove slavery 
an evil, as it exists in the United States, is quite an easy task; 
but to tell how that evil can be remedied, without at the same 
time, injuring both the white and black population of our 
country, is a question, the satisfactory adjustment of which, 
I readily confess, will require a better head and heart than 
mine, or those possessed by these emancipating preachers, 
who are continually bawling oniset your negroes free! 

Unenviable as is the condition of the slave, however 
wretched and forlorn as are his prospects, feeble as is the 
thread by which he holds all earthly joys, his condition is 
infinitely better than that of the free man of color, in any 
state or territory in the Union. The most miserable class of 
beings in these United States, is that class usually called free 
negroes. See them wronged, abused, and driven, by un- 
principled white folks, from pillow to post. Look at the 
many privations and sufferings which they are forced to en- 
dure, and how the cloud of cheerless gloom obscures froni 
them the sun of prosperity; while, dispirited and faint, they 
creep into their huts of poverty, and share with their weep- 



or PKESBTTERIANISM. Ill 

Lng babes, the cup of unmingled wretchedness! And this is 
what is called freedom ! A perfect mock of every thing like 
freedom! That the free colored population in this cou'ntry, 
therefore, labor under the most oppressive disadvantages, 
which their mereii/ nominal fretdom can by no means coun- 
terbalance, is too obvious to admit of doubt. I waive all 
enquiry whether this be right or wrong. I speak of thino-s 
as they tfre— not as they might, or ought to be. They are 
cut off from the most remote chance of amalgamation with the 
white population, by feelings or prejudices, call them what 
you will. Their associations are, and must of necessity be, 
chiefly with slaves, their right of suffrage gives them no 
political influence, and they are entirely excluded from any 
weight in our public councils. No merit, no services, no 
talents can ever elevate a man of color to a level with a white 
man, in this country. 

I have neither time, or the disposition at present, to draw 
a comparison between the situation of the slaves of the Wes- 
tern states, and the laboring peasantry at the North, or in the 
manufacturing states, but I leally believe that, if such a com.- 
parison were made, the situation of the slaves, in at least some 
of the western states, would be found in many respects pre- 
ferable. Not only so, but the situation of many white 
people here among us, is far worse than that of the slaves 
owned by some men— by good masters. Let those, there- 
fore, who have slaves, feed, clothe, and work them well, and 
teaek them the fear of God; or if they choose, emancipate 
them and send them to the coast of Africa, where, I humbly 
trust, under the fostering care of heaven, the slaves of this 
country will all, one day, find a calm and welcome retreat 
from the cares and vicissitudes of bondage. 
"Waft, waft, ye winds the stor}-, 

And you, yc waters roll, 
'Till like a sea of glory, 

It spreads from pole to pole,- 
'Till o'er our ransomed nature, 

The Lamb for sinners slain, 
Eedeemer, King-, Creator, 
In bliss returns to reig-n." 



PAUT II. 



Being a particular notice, of tlie representations, puljlicly and of- 
ticially given "by tlie Presbyterian ministers, 'of the moral aitd 
religious state of particular sections of our country, and tlie 
cliaracter and worth -w-liich. are attached to the ministers of otlier 
churches* 



CHAPTER I. 

WESTERN VIRGINIA A MORAL WASTE ! 

The statements made from time to time in our country, bv 
Ihe Presbyterian clergy, respecting its destitution in regard 
to spiritual instruction, as I have frequently had occasion to 
remark, must have an injurious eflfect, and produce in time, 
a reaction, which the authors of those erroneous statements 
themselves will ultimately very much deprecate. It was in 
an unguarded moment, and at an evil hour when, with a 
view to awaken the attention of the community to the impor- 
tance of religious enterprises, it was proclaimed by these 
men, in pamphlets and periodical publications, and from the 
pulpit, both at home and abroad, that two thirds of the 
American people were entirely destitute of religious instruc- 
tion. 

The Presbyterians, when making the statement, thereby 
annihilating all other denominations but their own, little 
thought of the use which was to be made of it abroad — that 
those false and slanderous representations would be quoted by 
our enemies on the other side of the Atlantic to prove the 
heatkerdsh state of America. Such, however, is the fact, a? 
appears from a series of letters addressed to the bishop of 
London, by the Rev. Calvin Colton, an American Presbyte- 
rian, now (1834) in England, and a correspondent of the 
New York Observer, written with a view to correct the mis- 
statements of the Bishop and others on this very subject. — 
And is it not as mortifying as it is true, to find that those 
British authors are borne out in their erroneous calculations 
of the religious condition of the United States by an appeal 
to the Presbyterian clergy residing therein? When we have 
said, and solemnly certified, under our own hand and seal, 
that «we are a nation of rogues and villains," we ought not, 
k2 



Hi HELPS TO THE STTTDT 

and indeed, in justice, we cannot think hard of others for re- 
peating the charge. But, may we not hope, that these cir- 
cumstances will teach a useful lesson to those who may here- 
after write or speak on those subjects, for the edification of 
our British neighbors? 

The epithets heathen, savage, and barbarians, were first 
applied by one nation of people to that of another, I believe, 
.shortly after Noah's posterity had dispersed, and not long 
after the confusion of tongues. These necessarily divided 
families or tribes, settling in different countries, and indiffer- 
ent directions, sodn adopted different modes of living, actings- 
worshiping, &c. f and some of them thinking themselves su- 
perior to others, (like the Presbyterians now are by other 
denominations) began to dub others with the epithets heathe-n. 
pagan, &c. ; and consequently, they charged them with be- 
ing the wretched and forlorn inhabitants of 77ioral wastes! 
But more of tliis in its proper place. 

From the Home Missionary for February, 1S30, the fol- 
lowing letter is taken, written by the Rev. Thomas A.Ogden^ 
of the Presbyterian church, 

'^Mingdon, Va. Bee. .9, 1830. 

It is now eighteen months since I came to this place. It ir* 
indeed a waste and barren part of our country. In this 
(".ounty, which has a population of from 12 to 14,000, there 
are only two preachers of the Piesbyterian denomination 
besides myself, unless you reckon Mi'. M'lntire, who preaches 
only a third or fourth part of his time in this county. But 
when you go out of this county and travel North, you may 
p;o 150 or 200 miles without meeting a single preacher of our 
denomination. A few Methodists are to be found in the dis- 
tance, but not 3. single educated clergyman. 

I think I do not exaggerate when i say, if you except 
Illinois, you cannot find in any state east of the Mississippi. 
an equal extent of territory as utterly destitute.'^ 

What a gloomy description of Abingdon and of the county 
of Washington, in the Ancient Dominion! But is it not 
over wrought.^ Yes. Mr. Ogden has not eren intimated in 
the above letter, that there were even ministers or church 
members of any other denomination in Abingdon, but leaves 
the reader to infer that the care of the whole population de- 
volved upon himself and the three Presbyterian ministers to 
whom he alludes. True, he does condescend to say that, in 
the vast extent of country 7iorth of Abingdon, "a few 



OF PRBSBTTERIAmsM. Il5 

Methodists are to be found," but then, '«not a single edu- 
cated clergyman.'^ If it may in truth be said of Abingdon, 
that it is a "waste and barren part of our country," the same 
may be said of any village, town or city, in the Union. It 
then contained about 1000 inhabitants, and for intelligence, 
respectful attention to the Gospel, and high respectability of 
character, would have borne, and will still bear honorable com- 
parison with any town Mr. Ogden was ever allowed to read 
a little sermon in! The Holston Annual Conference of the 
Methodist church, had, even at that date, been as often as 
twice debtors to the hospitality of its citizens; and the Pres- 
byterian Synod had also partaken of the like hospitality. 

And in addition to the Presbyterian church, there was then, 
a commodious Methodist church in Abingdon, attended by- 
a large worshipping assembly, the Rev. S. Patton, a pious, 
useful, and talented stationed preacher. Rev. E. F. Sevier, 
an ^^educated" presiding elder, an eminent local preacher, 
and between 150 and 200 church members. That there was 
such a church I am certain, for I aided in making it commo- 
dious, with my plane, hand-saw, hammer, &:c. 

In the county of Washington, even at the date of Mr. 
Ogden's letter, the Methodists had fourteen meeting houses, 
twenty-four places of regular preaching, seven local and two 
travelling preachers, and nearly 900 church members. And 
any of these preachers, local or travelling, could, in point of 
preaching talents, shine Mr. Ogden into the shades. 

I was partially acquainted with brother Ogden; and on a 
particular occasion in Abingdon, which I never can forget, 
in company with the Rev. John Heninger, we dined together; 
and Mr. Ogden had scarcely greased his mouth with the vic- 
tuals set before him, till I discovered he was one of those 
men ivho thought more liiglily of himself than he ought 
to have thought. And as learned 3.9, Mr. Ogden professed 
to be, I know very well, that under his labors, this <^waste 
and barren part of our country'^ was by no me'ans reclaimed 
and made to blossom as the rose. 

At a synodical meeting, held in Athens, Tenn. in the fall 
of 1830, in the presence of several hundred persons, the Rev, 
George Painter, of Wythe county, Va. (in relation to the 
moral and religious condition of Western Virginia,) made a 
statemantto this effect: — <«We are in the midst of a people, 
many of whom are enemies to God, and where there is but 
little interest felt in a sacramental meeting when appointed.'" 

The Rev. Mr. Mclntyre, to whom Mr. Ogden alludes in 
his letter, followed Mr. Painter and said: — <<The prospects of 



116 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

religion in several counties in Western Virginia, are quit* 
gloomy and distressing." 

In the Hiwassean and Athens Gazette, of the 2Sth of Octo- 
ber, 1830, published just at the close of this synodical meet- 
ing, in a narrative of religion and pastoral letter to the 
churches, I find the following sentence: "The cause of tem- 
perance, as reported by two of our remote brethren, [alluding 
to Painter and Mclntyre] wears a totally different aspect. 
Temperance societies are not. Drinking is a matter of uni- 
versal indulgence!!! Drunkenness stalks abroad with un- 
blushing effrontery, tramples down the dearest rights of 
social life, and stifles the finest sensibilities of the soul !'^ 

This same Mr. Mclntyre, wrote a similar account of the 
moral condition of this country to Dr. Ely, for publica- 
tion in the Philadelphian; and after it had appeared in this 
paper, it was copied into the Telegraph and Visitor, a Pres- 
byterian paper published in Richmond, Virginia. The follow- 
ing brief extracts are taken from the Richmond paper: — 
*<There are eight counties here (Western Va.) totally des- 
titute of the regular ministrations of the Gospel." 

Mr. Mclntyre then goes on to say, "this moral waste has 
neither money, food, nor raiment, to present the mis- 
sionary!!" 

"Now, the '^eight counties" to which this reverend gentle- 
man alludes, are the counties of Wythe, Washington, Russell, 
Scott, Lee, Tazewell, Giles and Grayson. Well, as it re- 
gards Methodist labors in seven of these counties (not 
including Lee) there were, at that time, thirteen travelling 
preachers and forty local preachers; 3,199 whites, and 481 
colored members in full connection. In Lee, there were, at 
that time, two travelling and several local preachers, of the 
Methodist order, with several hundred church members. 

And yet, parson Mclntyre, a huge mass of self-conceit, 
would ride through this country, with all these facts staring 
him in the face, and sing as he went: 

These servile sons of Ham, 

Seize as the purchase of thy blood; 
Let all these heathen know thy name. 

And turn from Idols to the living" God! 
These blind Virginians convert, 

And shine into their pagan hearts; 
That they their rights may now assert, 

And from their Idols soon depart! 
O Lord! in mercy, smile upon these hills, 

I })ray with gold, the people's pockets fill, 
For they have * 'neither money, food nor raiment" Lord, 

To aid the missionary, or the Gospel word! 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 117 

But, there seems to have been no money in Western Vir- 
ginia, in the days of Mr. Mclntyre; and the "pressure in the 
money market" seems to have distressed him as much or more, 
than the removal of the "public deposites" from the Bank of 
the United States did, the good people of Boston and Phila« 
delphia. I have long since known that Solomon says; 
"money answers all things" — but I never knew before, that 
it would answer the end and supply \ki^ place of an Almighty 
Saviour. But is it true, that the people of Western Virginia 
were, in those detys, or at any other period of their lives, 
destitute of food and raiment? It is not true. Western 
Virginia is the land of my nativity; — there I have ploughed 
and hoed corn: — there I have seen the people dressed com- 
fortable, fashionable and fine; and so far as "food" is con- 
cerned, I do know, that they have corn, wheat, rye, oats, 
bacon, beef, butter, cheese and potatoes, in great abundance. 
And these, by the bye, are the very articles for which Christ 
died, according to Hopkinsian Calvinism. So that, if there 
were no other proof of this country abounding with all these 
good things, we have sufficient proof of it, in an express 
article of the Hopkinsian creed, which says, although Christ 
only purchased eternal life for the elect; yet, He purchased 
^^tejnporal blessings for all mankind" — such as are named in 
the above list. And this same parson Mclntyre, as I am 
informed, seeing that Christ adorned and beautified the mar- 
riage life and ceremony with his presence, in Cana of Galilee, 
and that the same is commended of St. Paul to be honorable 
among all men, has, in this "land of Nod, on the east of Eden" 
taken to "himself a wife;" and he is now, no doubt, feasting 
on the rich bounties, purchased by the Saviour, for repro- 
bates! May he long live to enjoy this "feast of marrow and 
fat things!" 



CHAPTER n. 

KKNTUCKT, ALMOST DESTITUTE. 

The following paragragh, giving an account of the lost and 
ruined condition of Kentucky, is taken from the "Visitor 
and Telegraph," a Presbyterian paper published in Rich- 
mond, Va., for 1829: 

•<The editor of the Home Missionary says, that recent communications 



118 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

, assure him, "that there are in Kentucky not far from 600,000 inhabitants, 
and the whole supply of Presbyterian ministers is only about fifty \ and 
these, it is said, are, one fourth of the whole number of ministers, of all det- 
nominations, in the state. It is therefore estimated that 400,000 souls in 
Kentucky, are destitute of the stated administrations of the gospel, — 
u hile multitudes seldom hear the voice of a Christian minister of any 
kind." "This," says a correspondent, "will be seen to be the true state 
of things, when you reflect that a strip of country, beginning at Mays- 
ville, on the north of the state, running with the road through Paris, 
Lexington, and Danville, and terminating at the Rolling Fork, below 
Lebanon, a distance of about 130 miles, and embracing a space of 15 
miles on each side of the road, includes nearly three fourths of all our 
ministers, and perhaps half of all others in the state." 

Remarks. — Far be it from me to represent any part of our 
country to be better than it really is. It is not denied that 
there are many destitute places to be found — fields of mission- 
ary labor for devoted preachers of every denomination — but 
I am desirous to know if it is proper, if it is correct to dsr 
scribe as a field '^destitute of the stated administrations of the 
gospel" — a barren waste — where <*multitudes seldom hear 
the voice of a Christian minister" — places, where the Gospel 
is regularly preached, and its ordinances administered by 
faithful men; and where the people are attentive hearers, and 
many of them attentive doers of the word? What! only 
o?ieAt^/?fl?refl?«nfi?j^/yministers,exclusive of the Presbyterian 
clergy, in Kentucky, and as many as 400,000 souls destitute 
of the stated administrations of the Gospel! This statement 
is now, and was when first made, wholly untrue. There 
were in Kentucky, at that time, near 400 effective — if you 
please, "competent" Methodist ministers, travelling and 
local; — and from the annual report of the Baptist tract so- 
ciety, of the same year, it appears there were 270 Baptist 
ministers; 'beside a number of ministers belonging to other 
denominations. And if there had been no preachers there 
of other denominations, I may safely say, there were no 
populated sections of 10 miles square in the whole state, in 
which the Gospel was not preached weekly, and its ordin- 
ances regularly administered Dy Methodist preachers. 

Thus, we witness, constantly, with regret and surprise, the 
long continued impositions practised by Presbyterian clergy- 
men, upon those abroad, by false statements with regard to 
the religious destitution of the south and vvest; and this too, 
at the expense of the feelings and character of ministers of 
other denominations, and the i eligious character of the people. 
And although Methodist preachers need not to ask letters of 
commendation from Presbyterians — their epistle being writ- 
ten in the hearts of thousands, known and read of all men; 



OF PRESBYTER1A5ISM. il9 

Still th-cy are tired of hearing this exclusive claim to minis- 
terial character and usefulness, and the self-confident assump- 
tion of "competent"— and '^efficient"— and ^^regular" min- 
isters on the part of the Presbyterian clergymen, as set forth 
in their letters and reports. And as I am a sort of poet at 
times, I would«nquire of these self-styled orthodox gentry:— 

Where is thy greatness now? forgotten! gone! 

Thy superioritj', scatt^r'd in the dust of time, 
And the bright sun, that once upon you shone, 

Has located his glory in a different clime. 

]My object in re-publishing the letters and reports of Pres- 
byterian missionaries, with subjoined remarks, is to subserve 
the cause of truth, and at the same time, to teach the authors 
of tliose letters and reports, the salutary lesson not to suffer 
their zeal to get too much the start of their knowledge, nor 
their veracity to halt too far behind both. Therefore^ the 
next chapter will be written on the subject of the moral deso- 
lations in the Province of Canada, as set forth by two Presby- 
terian ministers in the city of New- York. For it seems that 
not only the valley of the Mississippi is a moral waste, in 
their estimation, but every other section of the globe, where 
these men do not reign without a rival. In one word, from 
the reports of home missionaries in the employment of the 
Presbyterian church, it appears, that Presbyterian clergy- 
men alone, have been called of God to preach the Gospel m 
these United States. 



CHAPTER III. 

♦^'the province or upper canada is a great moral 



The above sentence occurs twice in the New- York Evan- 
gelist, for August, 1831, in two recommendations from two 
reverend Presbyterians of the city of New- York, in which 
they urge the claims of Mr. Gary, an agent sent by the Pres- 
bytery of Upper Canada to solicit pecuniary aid in behalf ot 
a theological seminary, then in contemplation for that pro- 
vince. One of these gentlemen, in urging the claims ot 
Upper Canada, or his kindred spirits of that province, in 
their determination to establish a seminary of learning there, 
actually goes on to say, *nhis seminary is comparatively the 
ONLY HOPE under God.'' That it is right to establish semin- 



120 HEIPS TO TH£ 8TV1IY 

aries t)l leaJtiing in Canada, and in every state and territory 
in the Union> will not, I think, be denied by any one; but that 
Upper Canada should be represented as "a great moral waste/' 
in order to effect this most desirable object is wicked, and it 
is what facts and the real state of things will not warrant. 
That there ar« many ungodly sinners in Upper Canada, and 
many soul-destroying errors which need to be plucked up, I 
have no doubt; but I happen to have such means of informa- 
tion, as to enable me to know that in Upper Canada, for the last 
thirty-five years, there have been as powerful, and, in propor- 
tion to the number of the inhabitants, as extensive revivals of 
religion, as have been witnessed any where else; and within 
seven or eight years past the success of the missions under the 
care of the Methodist conference in Canada, has truly aston- 
ished every one who has impartially beheld them. Gentle- 
men, this over-stating business is not the bes't way to do 
good. Reader, it cannot now be done as formerly, as you 
very well know, without an exposure. It must be obvious, 
that the want of accuracy and candor, manifested in so many 
communications ©n the moral condition of our country, not 
only excites a prejudice among us injurious to the usefulness 
of those sent out to labor as missionaries, but creates a false 
impression abroad. 

The population of Upper Canada, in 1831, did not much 
exceed 100,000 souls. Among these there were not less 
than 10,000 belonging to the Methodist Episcopal church, or 
about one tenth of the whole population, according to the 
minutes of said church. Add to these the Baptists, the 
Menonists, the Scotct^ and English Presbyterians, and the 
members of the Church of England, and it will be found that 
the province is not one "great moral waste," as these libellers 
have represented it, unless they intended to be understood, 
which was no doubt the case, that all were morally destitute 
who were not favored with the ministrations of the Presbytery 
of Upper Canada. One of the gentlemen does, indeed, as- 
sume the position that a "faithful Gospel ministry" cannot be 
secured "without a theological seminary !" If this position be 
correct, then indeed was Upper Canada in a most deplorable 
state, for no such institution existed there, and therefore no 
"faithful Gospel ministry." — But it seems from an article 
that appeared in a Canada paper, soon after these libellous 
publications reached there, that the people of that Province, 
who had sat under what they considered a "faithful gospel 
rninistry" for more than thirty years, did not relish these 
things so well. ' 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 121 

To be brief, so far as different portions of our population 
are dependant on Presbyterian ministers for a supply of their 
religious wants, their condition is truly deplorable, and if Mt 
without help from ministers of other denominations, they 
may in truth be called '^great moral wastes!" For, first, but 
few of them have the disposition to feed the wanderino- 
sheep without high wages; and next, still fewer of them have 
the gifts and graces to do so. Happily for many, however 
so far as Methodism is concerned, there is, in its admirable 
economy, an adaptiveness to the various local habitations and 
religious wants of every class of society. Methodist preach- 
ers generally, like the venerable founder of Methodism, John 
Wesley, say, in answer to those who trouble them <Hhe world 
2S my parish. '\ Before I close this chapter, however, I will 
just remark, that the government of Canada, some time pre- 
vious to 1831, had established a college at York, the capitol 
of Upper Canada, and that the Methodists had for some time 
been pursuing measures for the establishment of a literary 
institution, to be located at Coberg, in the District of Lan- 
caster. And where is there a scope of country, havino- no 
greater population than that of t/>;?er Canada, where more fhan 
two colleges can be found? Alas! this enables us to account 
for the poor little Presbytery of Upper Canada, having sent 
Mr. Gary out on this begging expedition. The Presbyte- 
rians, where ever they are found, like Pompey and Cesar of 
old, can neither bear an equal or a superior! 



CHAPTER IV. 

DELAWARE COUNTY, Ix\ NEW- YORK, A GREAT MORAL WASTE. 

The following letter, written at Delhi, Delaware county, 
JNew-York, is from the pen of a Presbyterian clergyman, and 
m the summer of 1831, was published in th? Delaware 
Gazette, the Western Recorder, the New-York Evangelist, 
and the Vermont Chronicle. 

"Dear Sir— Permit me, through the Recorder, to ac- 
knowledge the displays and triumphs of the grace of God in 
the village of Delhi, the shire town of Delaware county. 
Until within a few months, the influence of infidelity upon 
the population of this place, both in its naked form of the 
last century, and under its varying specious garbs of the pres- 
ent day, had not probably a parallel in the State! The Bi 



i22 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

ble and its institutions were treated ivith rery general cosT' 
tempt; and their influence was almost wpiolly banished 
from the people! The name of God and of his dear Son,, 
were openly reviled and blasphemed, by men of the most 
commanding influence, and the highest standing in the place. 
Some FEEBLE EFFORTS had repeatedly/ been made to raise 
the Redeemer's standard on this ground, but with no appar- 
ent success^ till sometime in the course of last winter, when, 
under the missionary labors of Hev. S. G, Orton, the Holy 
Spirit gently distilled its influences, and a /ei^; were brought 
to yield their hearts to God. 

In April last, a four days meeting was held, which was at- 
tended with very happy effects. At that time a church was 
oro-anized, and the banner of the gospel was set up in the 
name of the Lord. At the April meeting, a county Sunday 
School Union was formed, and efficient measures were adopt- 
ed, to extend the benefits of Bible instruction to all the youth 
of the county. The whole amount of good done cannot be 
fully estimated, until the disclosures of the judgment day. 
The little sacramental host of God's elect in Delhi, need the 
prayers and aid of their brethren, in their present struggle 
to build a house for the public worship of God, and to estab- 
lish among them the stated preaching of the gospel. It de- 
volves upon them to hold up the banner of the cross, on per- 
haps, THE boldest RAMPAUT OF THE KINGDOM OF DARKNESS 

IN OUR STATE. May the great Head of the Church sustain 
them in the efibrt, and to him shall be all the glory. 

Yours, &c. L." 

Remarks. — In a moral point of view, the enterprising 
mind of man, cannot conceive of a race of beings, being in a 
more deplorable state, than this letter writer represents the 
inhabitants of Delaware county to have been, in the summer 
of 1831. Nor is the penetration of an Odipus, at all neces- 
sary, to enable the reader to determine, whether the above is 
a portrait drawn by a faithful artist, or a hideous caricature hav- 
ing existence only in a distempered imagination, or the splene- 
tic efiusions of mortified vanity and self-conceit. From reading 
Mr. L's letter, a person unacquainted with Delhi, would sup- 
pose that it was peopled with a gang of Atheists, supersti- 
tious Hindoos, or degraded Hottentots, who led lives corrps- 
pondmg with their professions, and that none but "feeble" 
efierts had been made to effect a reformation, all of which 
proved entirely unavailing until the arrival of Mr. Orion, 
and his brother L. who (potent men !) soon battered down the 
boldest "rampart of the kingdom of darkness in the State," 



OF PRESBTTERIANISM. * 123 

a-md established the ^'sacramental hostof God's elect'' ' The 
article in question, is a foul libel on the citizens of Delhi and 
its vicinity, and its being from the pen of a clergyman is no 
extenuation of the. offence: rather it aggravates and greatly 
increases the guilt. ' ^ 

What excuse can be offered for this flagrant outrage, com- 
mitted agamst the ^'rampart" of common sense, by this our 
brother L? I hope some better one than that he wrote for 
the Western Recorder, or the meridian of Utica, for effect 
abroad. If there be any portion of the great commercial 
, Mate, where the people have been favored with line upon 
iine, and precept upon precept, here a little, and therea o-reat 
deal, that portion is Delaware county. The march of ^reli 
gious improvement in that county, for a number years past 
lias been rapid, constant and onward. The Delaware Coun' 
ty Bible Society, reported at its anniversary in July, 1S30 
that every family in the county was supplied with a copy of 
the scriptures. They then had not only a county Temper- 
ance Society there, which would compare advantap-eously 
With any in the State, hut ^village temperance society was 
lormed there in the spring of 1829, and was in a very flour- ' 
ishing state in 1S31, which to Mr. L. ought to have been evi- 
dence of a reformation in morals, removed in some small de- 
gree from heathenism ! 

^ The Methodists, who are by far the most numerous denom- 
ination m that county, had long enjoyed ^'stated" preachino-. 
indeed a revival had already commenced among them which 
numbered some ten or a dozen converts, before these rever- 
•end gentlemen assumed spiritual dictation over the villao-e 
ihe ^episcopalians had a house of worship in Delhi before 
these men had paid the place this pastoral visit, and had or- 
ganized a congregation in the place several years before they 
•Duilt said house. Both the Methodists and Episcopalians, 
had flourishing Sabbath schools there, even before they had 
learned that the Lord had certainly made such men as Messrs. 
Orton and L. The doctrines of the Methodist and Episco- 
€al churches had long been honestly stated by the preachers; 
no unpopular tenets were kept in reserve; no garbled account 
xA a Contession of Faith was insidiously held out as a lure to 
decoy the ignorant and inexperienced. Under the ministry 
ot these men, the people were not shocked with irreverent 
aiid blasphemous expi-essions, or disgusted with the capers of 
a harlequin. They heard no virulent denunciations of indi- 
vidua s, or of particular creeds, under the garb of supplica- 
tions to the throne of grace which has long since become a 



I2ir HELPS TO THE STUDT 

characteristic of the unfledged clergymen of the Presbyteri- 
an order. 

That the spirit of intolerance which has long been exhibit- 
ing his frightful visage among the Calvinistic churches gener- 
ally, may take his departure without shedding any more of 
his Bohon Upas influence; that charity without which reli- 
gion is worse than vanity, may fill the hearts of all profess- 
ors, at least to a tolerable extent, and that Heaven's blessing 
may descend upon the other religious societies in Delhi, as 
well as on Mr. L's "sacramental host of God's elect," is the 
sincere prayer and ardent desire of the writer of this chap- 
ter. 



CHAPTER V. 

*^riVE MILLIONS OF PEOPLE IN THE UNITED STATES, ARE 
STILL WITHOUT A PREACHED GOSPEL." 

The above declaration was made before several hundreds 
of the good citizens of Cincinnati, in November 1832, on the 
Lord's day, in the second Presbyterian church in that city^ 
by the Rev. Mr. Peters, the Secretary of the Home Mis- 
sionary Society. Mr. Peters also went on to state, that *'In 
the United States, containing thirteen -millions, there are but 
eight thousand ministers of all denominations." Again: This 
Rev. Secretary said, ^'Six years ago there were but /Aree min- 
isters of the gospel in the State of Illinois, at present there 
are but thirty^ and twenty-sia of them were sent out by the 
Home Missionary Society." He then added, "Six years ago 
there were hnithree ministers in Missouri, now there are but 
twenty, and sixteen of them were sent by the same society."' 
Now, the Rev. Timothy Flint, of the Presbyterian church, 
somewhere in the neighborhood of the time Mr. Peters says 
there were but three ministers in Illinois, wrote from that 
State to a Presbyterian editor of New Yorji, declaring that 
there was but one minister in the State ! Which of these 
slanderous parsons are we to believe? The above contradic- 
tion reminds me of an occurrence I once witnessed. At a 
synodical meeting in East Tennessee, where the Presbyteri- 
an clergy, one by one, were giving the most appalling accounts 
ofthe desolations of our country. Dr. Coffin, thenof Knox- 
ville, remarked in substance as follows: "I am not pastor of 
any regular church, owing to the relation I sustain to the East 



OF PKESBYTERIANISM. 1^6 

Tennessee College; but from my knowledge of Knoxville 
and its vicinity, I am prepared to say, that much harmony 
and brotherly love prevails among the citizens, and the cause 
of God is prospering/' 

The Rev. Mr. Foster, of the same place, came forward 
next, who, being absent when the old Doctor made his state- 
ment, and not knowing what had been said, remarked, in di- 
rect opposition to him: <^Wickedness and party spirit prevail 
to a very great extent in Knoxville !'' Well, said I to my- 
self, this is strange work ! Upon leaving the place, said I to 
an Attorney of my acquaintance, — when you lawyers have 
a difficult cause on hand, and a number of sorry witnesses to 
examine, I am told you usually get them out behind the 
house and drill them, or learn them all to tell the same story. 
With a significant smile he replied, <Hhe like has been done, 
and I think those preachers ought to have come to a similar 
understanding likewise. ^^ But to return. At the time Mr. 
Peters disgorged himself in Cincinnati, there were about fif- 
ty travelling Methodist preachers in Illinois, — there were for- 
ty-six in the Missouri Conference; and there were many lo- 
cal preachers who had emigrated to, and been raised up in 
those States, besides the many Baptists, and Cumberland Pres- 
byterian ministers, preachers of the United Brethren, &c. &c. 
Now Mr. Peters, where do your five millions of heathen 
live ? Surely not in North America. But what do these 
gentlemen understand by the terms heathen and heathenism)^ 
What countries are known as heathen among the inhabitants 
of Protestant Christendom in Europe or America? I an- 
swer, those countries that are not under the influence of the 
gospel. Those countries where other religions than that of 
the christian prevail; where idols^ the work of men's hands, 
are objects of worship; such as Turkey in Europe and Asia, 
China, Japan, Persia and Africa. These are heathen coun- 
tries, and the worship of idols, brother Peters, is the heathen 
mark. Did ever a Presbyterian missionary, during his per- 
egrinations in the West, find any persons bowing down to a 
god of their own make.^ I think not; unless they were some 
of the most stupid of the Western Indians. 

Once again: The Rev. Thomas A. Morris of the Metho- 
dist Episcopal Church, at present the editor of the Western 
Christian Advocate, was present in Cincinnati, and heard 
Mr. Peters utter these most appalling religious statistics that 
^ver came to the ears of a civilized people; and Mr. Morri? 
immediately exposed the Secretary, through the columns of 
the Christian Advocate and Journal. Well, the burst of in- 
l2 



126 HEIPS TO THE STUDY 

dignationsoon became so great, that Mr. Leavitt, the ^editor 
of the New York Evangelist, and a near neighbor of Mr. 
P's, came out and said, "we do not know who T. A. Morris 
is, but we do assuredly know^ that brother Peters never 
made any such statements as above represented.'^ To this 
Mr. Morris replied with the following certificates, which put 
an end to the controversy. 

"We do hereby certify, that we were at the second Presby- 
terian church and heard the sermon refered to by Rev. T. A. 
Morris, dated Nov. 27, 1832; and we do recollect that the 
stranger, calling himself the secretary of the Home Missiona- 
ry society, did make the statements marked as quotations by 
Mr. Morris, and more especially those in reference to the 
number of ministers in Illinois and Missouri, and that he did 
not qualify the expressions by either jwejixing or affixing 
any terms to refer the members to any one church. 

JAMES SHARP, 
J. JORDON. 
Cincinnati, Jan. 23, 1S33." 

"We also were present and heard the sermon above referred 
to, and do certify that the Rev. Mr. Peters not only made 
such statements, but we believe the identical statements 
given by Mr. Morris. 

JAMES ARMSTRONG,. 
DAVID WHITCOMB. 
Jf/n. 23, 1833." 

In conclusion. By the last census of 1830, the population 
of the United States was 12,866,020. From the bestau-^ 
thenticated documents for 1833, as collected from the official 
reports of the respective denominations, (not including the 
Roman Catholics) it appears that there are 17,.000 preachers 
in the United States, even supposing the local preachers of 
the Methodist church, not to number more than 5,000. In 
the valley of the Mississippi as it is called, there were, in 
1833, as many as 22 religious papers, having in all 35,500 
subscribers. And in this, I have not reckoned the Catholic 
papers. In addition to the religious papers published in the 
valley, I ought to add, that many thousands of those publish- 
ed in the East, are circulated here. There are several polit- 
ical papers in the West, which also publish much religious 
intelligence. There are also, a great many literary and sci- 
entific publications in the \vest, and most of them too, have 
quite an extensive circulation. And now, candid reader, I 
ask you, is the western country a heathen country ? , I am 
sorry to see such highly exceptionable features, in the major- 



OF PRESBTTERIANISM. 127 

ity of the reports of the Presbyterian missionaries. I allude 
to the sectarian rule by which the moral character of a peo- 
ple is estimated, and to the want of that friendly and res- 
pectful feeling to which ministers of other denominations are 
entitled — at least, for their work's sake. After musterino- 
up all the charity I am master of, I cannot resist the beliel" 
that, the object of the writers, is not to look out the truly des 
titute and supply them with the means of grace, but to find 
the people who are without a Presbyterian ministry; and 
that, in their opinion, wherever Presbyterian ministers are 

not sufficiently numerous to supply the whole population, 

there the people are in the ^^region and shadow of death !" 
Verily, verily, I say unto all such, the kingdom of Heaven 
consists not in lies and falsehoods, but in righteousness, 
peace, truth, fair dealing, and joy in the Holy Ghost. 

These are strange times in which we live ! Had our un- 
worthy brother Peters, given us this doleful account of some 
land inhabited by savage tribes— some remote heathen nation 
—some place where Juggernaut and other sanguinary idols 
are worshiped, then might we have read the account with 
deep interest. This brother Peters, I suppose, is one of the 
many dear youths who are so spontaneously produced by the 
red sand stone mountains of Connecticut river, between 
Northampton and Massachusetts, and all that country near 
the south line of Vermont ! The geology, geography, cli- 
mate, inhabitants, together with the animal and vegetable 
productions of all that country, are quite favorable to the 
growth of such missionaries; and also to wooden nutmeo-s, 
wooden liams, and improved patent clocks ! ^ ' 

And how very benevolent they are, in that they conde- 
scend graciously, to crowd to the "Great West," and to. la- 
bor and toil among the most vile and rude— the most loose, 
unchaste, immodest, off-scouring of[the whole earth! Sure- 
ly, if there be merit in works they will not loose their re- 
ward ! What! men loose their reward, who, by their zeal, 
and talents, and lofty erudition, through, thick and thin, have 
sustained the honors, and promoted the vital good of Chris- 
tianity, among such a vast tribe of untutored savages, as in- 
habit the valley of the Mississippi ! -No, really, they shall 
be so blessed in this life, that it may be said of them, "they 
sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play;" and should 
they neglect to repent, as they in all probability will, in the 
life to come, they shall be 5/e**e<i with everlasting d-estruction! 

Lastly: Upon the authority of these filthy little missiona- 
ries, the Presbyterian prints to the East, all unite in represent- 



128 HEIPS TO THE STUDY 

ing the western people as one rast tribe of ferocious and un- 
tutored wanderers— nay, savages, even the rudest of nature's 
children, having their dwelling places west of the Allegany 
mountains; and where, as in the republic of Sparta, theft, 
instead of being execrated as a crime, is dignified into an art, 
and an accomplishment, and on that footing even admitted 
into their system of education ! These men and editors, sup- 
posing that we do not even possess a single vestige of amor- 
al regimen — that we are even destitute of the theology of 
conscience-^ and that, with the fierceness and frenzy of a Gat- 
aline, or the rage and fury of a Nero, we traverse the hills 
and valleys; or that we like the natives of Hindostan, assem- 
ble with delight around the agonies of a human sacrifice; — 
supposing this to be our state I say, they light down among 
us, richly laden with the inconsistencies of Calvinism, and 
endowed with prophetic vision, so as to behold, among the 
yet undiscovered secrets of futurity, the certain doom of tlie 
reprobates, and the equally certain joys of the elect ! 

And if the doctrines they preach to us be true, the conclu- 
sion is inevitable, that we are under the government of a 
malignant and unrighteous God, at once the patron of vice 
and the persecutor of virtue. From the soul-damning influ- 
ence of such doctrines, good Lord deliver, even us poor bar- 
barians of the west ! 



CHAPTER VL 

THE STATE OF INDIANA A GREAT MORAL WASTE, 

In the Home Missionaiy, for September, 1833, I find s 
communication from the pen of the Rev. Moses H. Wilder, 
agent of the American Tract Society, written from Jefferson 
county, Indiana, and headed, *Hvide fields to be occir- 
pied!'' Mr. W. after making some preliminary remarks, 
and after speaking of his extensive tour through this state, 
and of the many things which come under his observation, 
politely adds: **There is a missionary field situated between 
Fort Wayne and Logansport, which is of first importance. 
A town, Huntington, is springing up on the Wabash, 24 
miles from Fort Wayne, on the line of the canal, which is 
destined soon to be a town of some importance. In one direc- 
tion there is no Preshyterian preacher within sixty miles. 
There is one at Fort Wayne, twenty-iour miles, and with 



or PRESBTTERIAiriSM. 129 

these two exceptions there is no preacher in that whole 

QUARTER OF THE state! !" 

Our tract distributor, after hardening his heart, and resist- 
ing the Spirit, till he had acquired fortitude to pen the above 
libel, gently proceeds: "A faithful and devoted missionary 
would do more there now in one year, than he would be able 
to do in four, if it is left to be run over with errors until that 
time.^' 

After speaking of the destitute condition of Jefferson, 
Elkheart, and Porte counties, he proceeds: — "St. Josephs 
county lies next to the preceding, and now has but three or 
four Presbyterians in the county — it may be considered the 
strong hold of infidelity, ^"^ 

And in winding up his doleful story, he adds: — "These 
places are all of them important, but the two last are most 
encouraging on account of support!^' 

Remarks. — To say nothing of the religious condition of 
the statje of Indiana, I am safe in saying that, as it respects the 
face of the country, and the soil and productions, every 
thing is inviting. It is agreeably diversified with swelling 
eminences and fertile plains. There are no elevations which 
even deserve the name of mountains. The hills, though fre- 
quent, swell gently, are of a deep, rich soil, and well adapted for 
the production oi grain; though the same soil will scarcely, 
sprout Calvinism. The flat or bottom lands, as they are called, 
on this much talked of Wabash, are remarkably fertile. The 
productions are wheat, oats, barley, rye, Indian corn, hemp 
and flax; and either of the two last named articles, would 
answer very well to hang a worthless little missionary with. 
On this same Wabash, the maple affords a supply of sugar, 
and the salt springs an abundance of salt. Coal is also found 
in great plenty on this river. With coal, the good sisters of 
Indiana can cook the missionary's victuals — with salt they can 
season the same, — and with their maple-sugar they can 
sweeten his cofiee, as they generally do; — and the missionary 
in turn, can go ofi' and basely slander them for their hospi- 
tality. 

But I will now call the attention of the reader, to the 
moral condition of this state. And first, what is called the 
Indiana Conference by the Methodists, does not even include 
all of the state of Indiana, a small part being embraced in the 
Illinois Conference. Still, at the very time our unfortunate 
brother Wilder published this i^;*/^? report, there were, in the 
Indiana Conference, 19,853 whites, and 182 colored members 
in the Methodist church. There were, at the same time, 62 



iSO HELPS TO THE STUDY 

travelling preachers, and a number of respectable local preadi- 
ers; besides "a number of Baptists, and other denominations- 
Yet, because Presbyterianism will not bud and blossom 
there, the hospitable people of the state, must in mass, be 
published to the world, as really not knowing the God who 
made them. Surely a depravity, a blight, a to»'por has come 
over the state of Indiana, comparable to sleep, to disease, 
and to death! 

Much has beep said and written, in defence of the morals 
of the west, and ably too. Nor can the great truth be too 
frequently or forcibly repeated, that, the moral and religious 
condition of no country under the sun, has been more basely 
slandered, than that of the far-famed valley of the Missis- 
sippi. However, in despite of all that can be said or done, 
the Presbyterian clergy, continue to characterize the western 
people as an ignorant, semi-savage, and a licentious set, wholly 
lost to the beauties of literature, science, and moral elevation 
of character! I say again, too long has it been customary 
with these men to represent the ^'Great Valley,'' as but one 
grade removed from barbarianism, and in point of moral cul- 
tivation a perfect waste, with the exception of here and there 
in places, '*like angel's visits, few and far between," a highly 
favored spot, ^^on account of support," upon which some 
benignant son of piety and science, some hot headed zealot, 
or missionary from a theological seminary, has compassion- 
ately and heroically condescended to shed a iew of the rays 
which so brilliantly illuminate the more highly favored 
region towards the rising sun! The remainder of this im- 
mense valley, with its already vast and rapidly increasing 
population, is to be viewed as one dark scene of moral deso- 
lation — the blackness of darkness, bordering on the region of 
the shadow of death! In a word, the western people, are a 
people ^'stricken, smitten of God and afflicted." No houses 
for the worship of God — no Sabbath schools — no Bible 
classes — no catechism meetings! — All is dark and void, as 
when ^'God said let there be light, and there was light!" 
Gloom, horror, death, are every where seen; before, behind, 
all around, desolation spreads its wing, and death liurls his 
poisonousarrows, fast and thick! Yes, verily, when these men 
first enter a neighborhood or state, an impervious blackness to 
finite splendor broods over the people, and eternal darkness 
would ultimately enshroud them, were it not that, <'light and 
immortality" beam forth through them, and pierce the dense 
clouds of their dark horizon! How great the desolations of 



OF PRESBYTBRIANISM. 131 

a country, where Presbyterianism is not the religion of the 

day! 

In this respect, we of the west have been, and are still, most 
o^rossly abused, and scandalously traduced, in that we are repre- 
sented as being almost a blank in creation — a dark spot on the 
map of God's universe! Although we have some ^'giants" in 
eloquence, and some "mighty men," we are said to abound in 
savage virtues; and every attempt is made to deprive us of 
the credit of these productions, as if it were impossible for 
any thing of excellence to be raised in our soil, unless culti- 
vated by the genius of Presbyterian, Congregational, or Hop- 
kinsian missionaries ! 

For these futile jackalls, who, during the long hard winters 
of the North, sit perched up in the chimney corner of some 
theological seminary, snuffing the delicious fumes of the mush- 
pot; or dabbling in a dish of salmagundi; or, dozing over a 
Latin primer, to sally out into the west in the spring and 
summer seasons, to enlighten the inhabitants thereof, is too 
intolerable to be borne with any longer. It is the business of 
these men, such as I have just been describing, to produce 
where they go, religious revivals, or as they are sometimes 
called "awakenings." Descriptions of these revivals, are 
regularly trumpeted forth to the world through their periodi- 
cals, in the manner already described. The method of bring- 
ing about these "awakenings" is about this: — Some one or 
more of these dear youths, who, as he says, has left his daddy^s 
house, and come all the way here, "for the good of souls," 
assembles the people together — lectures them awhile — gets 
them on an anxious bench — tells them they are great sinners, 
and that Christ is a great Saviour, &c. &c. Finally, some 
of these anxious "submit," or acknowledge that they feel 
quite miserable, and are willing to pay "tithes of mint, anise, 
and cumin;" when lo! as the fruits of such a meeting, so 
many "hopeful subjects" are said to have been "added to the 
church !" To all who willingly "submit,'' to both their doc- 
trines and calls for money; and who at the same time, confess 
that they are "wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, ' 
and naked," these good little Samaritans will kindly say, "thy 
sins which are many, are all forgiven !" But refuse to listen 
to these inspired missionaries, to whom "it is given to know 
the mysteries of the kingdom of God," and they will forth- 
with publish a monthly report saying, they have been among 
. a people "which hath devils long time, and wear no clothes, 
neither abode in any house, but in the tombs!" Nay verily, 
when they find they are not like to be successful, they will 



132 HELPS TO THK STUDY 

publish an appointment in your neighborhood or village, for 
a f-a-r-e-w-e-l~l sermon ! And like the ^^children sitting in 
the market-place, and calling one to another," they will say, 
^<we have piped unto you, and ye have not danced; we have 
mourned to you, and ye have not wept!" And as they go they 
sing:— 

*'In vain, with lavish kindness, 

The gifts of God are strown, 
These heathen in their bhndness, 

Bow down to stock and stone." 

But is this darkness that might be felt — this mid-night 
darkness that seems congealed to substance, that covers our 
minds, and casts on all our faculties a night-mare, or a torpid 
lethargy like that of death, what they are really laboring to 
drive away? No indeed. They want a little money for the 
Sunday School, Bible, Tract, or Missionary Society. And 
how readily they can quote such passages as the following: 
^'Give, and it shall be given unto you: good measure, pressed 
down, and shaken together, and running over!" Truly did 
the Saviour of men say: "for of the abundance of the heart 
the mouth speaketh." 



CHAPTER VII. 

ARKANSAS TERRITORY A GREAT MORAL WASTE. 

In a communication from the pen of A. W. Lyon, of 
Pope county, in Arkansas, bearing date Sept. 1833, and hav- 
ing for its caption *'a great field for laborers," I find 
a most appalling account of the desolations of that section. 
This communication is found in the Home Missionary, and 
was addressed to the managers of that society, requesting 
them to send out help, &c. 

After representing the principal parts of the territory, as 
wholly destitute of the means of grace, the writer acknowl- 
edges, though seemingly with reluctance; "Other parts of 
the territory are not altogether destitute of the Gospel ordin- 
ances, and churches of other denominations." 

He proceeds: "And some of their clergymen are doing 
good; but many of them are so utterly deficient, both in men- 
tal and moral qualifications, that it would be well for the 
cause of truth and righteousness, if they were any thing 
rather than preachers of the GospelP^ 



I 



OF PRESB YTBRIANISlf. 133 

Again: <'If, in the fields of labor for your missionaries, 
you give the preference to the most destitute, I am sure that 
your society will not longer overl6ok this territory.'' And 
in order to stimulate the board to immediate action, the 
%vriter further remarks: — "In extent, Arkansas ranks among 
the largest states in' the Union, and it is destined, at no dis- 
tant day, to become a populous member of the confederacy!" 

Once moie: In presenting motives to influence the board to 
take possession of this "great field" at once, he says: — "At 
the last session of congress, a bill was passed, authorizing the 
governor of this territory to sell 12,800 acres of choice land, 
to commence an institution which is to form the nucleus oi a 
college. This institution will be committed to the hands 
of almost any individuals who are on the ground and ca- 
pable of conducting it!!!^^ 

Remarks. — How contradictory these men are ! Mr. Lyon 
admits the ministers of "other denominations" to be '^clergy- 
men,^^ andthatthey are "doing good," notwithstanding they 
are "utterly deficient, both in mental and m,oral qualifica- 
tions!" 

As it respects the moral advantages of this territory, it is 
true, it does not vie with the middle and eastern states, nor 
even the western states; yet the Methodists, Cumberlands, 
and Baptists, are tolerably numerous; and as to the number of 
"clergymen," belonging to these "other denominations," the 
writer himself admits there are "many." He, at the same 
time admits, "the Presbyterian church has but two labourers" 
there. In a territory which is "destined, at no distant day, 
to become a popular member of the confederacy," to find but 
two Presbyterian ministers, I would suppose, is a source of 
very great affliction indeed. Ah brother Lyon ! could you 
not say in the language of the little song, 'Hhis is that that 
grieves meV I am personally acquainted with several 
Methodist preachers in the territory of Arkansas, and I do 
know, they are both able and ready, at all times, to defend 
the "cause of truth and righteousness," and to oppose with 
success, the doctrines of the Presbyterian church. Alas! 
this is the reason why they are so "deficient both in mental 
and moral qualifications. " But Presbyterian ministers, fresh 
from their theological seminaries, where they are manufac- 
tured by the dozen and exported for domestic missions, as 
fast as the cry of "moral wastes," and "destitute regions," 
can supply them with suitable outfits, must commence the dis- 
charge of their ministerial funetions by denouncing the minis- 
ters of all other denominations as "utterly deficient, both in 
M 



13* HELPS TO THE STUBY 

mental and moral qualifications!" hoping to induce others to 
believe, no doubt, that they who thus censure the illiteracy of 
others, are indeed learned themselves. 

And yet, how lew of these men of learning, so called, 
understand Hebrew, Latin or Greek ! JNay, how few of them 
are correct English scholars! Many of them are unac- 
quainted with the plain rules of grammar. In numbers, they 
frequently join the singular and the plural together, and con- 
found the masculine with the feminine gender, and seldom 
use the proper tense. Desire one of them to tell you the 
English of the first paragraph that occurs in one of Plato's 
dialogues. Give one of them an epistle of TuUy, or a satira 
in Virgil or Persius, and you stall him. But let them teii 
the story, and they are perfect in the Latin, Greek, Hebrew, 
French, Arabic, Turkish, Coptic, Syriac, German, Arminian, 
lUyrican, Bohemian and English languages! These are the 
only men, let them tell the story, who are at all versed in the 
higher branches of mathematical and mechanical science, or 
know any thing about physical astronomy! Presbyterian 
ministers alone, have ascertained that like causes will produce 
like efiects! — They are the inventors of the science which 
compares and identifies the laws of motion? — They are the 
men to measure the magnitude and distance of the sun and 
planets! — They have discovered that the action and reaction 
of matter are equal and contrary, and that the moon must at- 
tract tlie earth with an equal and contrary force ! — They have 
discovered that on account of the reciprocal action of matter, 
the stability of the syistem depends on the intensity of the 
primitive momentum of the planets! — They have disco- 
vered what number of years are requisite for the major axis 
of the earth^s orbit to accomplish a siderial revolution ! — 
They have learned that the revolutions of the satellites about 
Jupiter are precisely similar to those about the sun! — and 
they alone have learned that, the greatness of the compres- 
sion of Jupiter's spheriod is in consequence of his rapid 
rotation] And now, with all this knowledge, how do they 
figure in the pulpit? Why, verily, after much labor and 
groaning to get started, on they go, reading from a dead note 
book, to a mixed multitude, and that with a manner, too, as 
dead as the devil (who always attends church) could wish it. 
Is it not a shame, to say the least of it, that a man in congress, 
or in a court of justice, will speak hours to the purpose, and 
often in support of a doubtful point, without a note book; 
and yet, a minister of the Gospel, who has the range of three 
worlds, heaven, earth, and hell, with all the sublime doctrines 



OF PKBSB YTEKIANISM. 135 

of the Bible at his finger ends, can't speak forty-five or fifty 
minutes, without a little paper book held up as an extin- 
guisher between his eyes and the eyes of his hearers. Were I 
a Presbyterian priest, I would commit my papers to the flames, 
and determine to be second to none, were it only for the 
honor of the profession. 



CHAPTER VIII. 

MISSOURI A MORAL WASTE. 

The New- York Evangelist, of Nov. 1833, contains a 
communication over the signature of <*A. T." giving a most 
distressing account of the moral and religious condition of 
the state of Missouri. From this rare production I will give 
some extracts. The writer, from both the matter and man- 
ner of his communication, appears to be a Presbyterian cler- 
gjTnan, as usual; and it is very obvious, from his having 
concealed his proper name, that he anticipated a reply to his 
libellous publication. After giving an account of a very 
powerful camp-meeting,held at Doctor Nelson's camp-ground, 
■where the writer seems to have been in attendance, with 
' 'others" of his ' 'brethren," he proceeds as follows: "Here 
are a few thousand souls scattered over a wide extent of coun- 
try. J^o meeting houses, no organized societies by whose 
influence sinners may be brought under the influence of truth', 
a common meeting will gather few; men who have long lived 
destitute of the regular ordinances of the Gospel, must 
have something more than a common neighborhood meeting 
to induce them to leave their business and their pleasures; 
the novelty, the interest manifested on such occasions as I 
have specified, mduces many to go. Thus at a camp-meeting 
they come 10,20, 30, and even 50 miles." His Holiness, 
the reverend A. T., then closes with the following soul-cheer- 
ing intelligence: — ^^txvo or three hundred have been con- 
verted round in Doctor Nelson's neighborhood, in this way, 
the three past years." 

Remarks.— Truly, Doctor Nelson seems to have scattered 
salvation, in this benighted region, as from angel's wings! 
Qr, as says the poet, he seems to 

"Blow rock and mountain rampart round. 
Till glory echoes back the sound!" 

But the Doctor's "two or three hundred" converts, i* 



;i36 HEIPS TO THE STUDY 

seems, are the only followers Christ has in all this "wide ex- 
tent of country. " I know this Dr. Nelson, and have heard 
him preach; he was always an enthusiast, and was always 
upon some extreme. As, however, his labors have been so 
abundantly blessed in the meridian of Boon's lick, "the three 
past years," there is reason to suppose he has less acrimony 
in his composition now, than when he aided in editing and 
publishing the Calvinistic Magazine. 

But I shall say nothing more of Dr. N., nor of his brother 
A. T. since the communication of the latter, and not the 
person of either of the men, is the subject of my review. 

Poor Missouri! you are an anomaly of wickedness, of 
gain, unlawful, reckless, unrelenting and polluted deeds; 
while your inhabitants are a set of dark, oblique, marble- 
faced, savage-featured beings, whose only employment in this 
world is, to oppose God, and the spread of his Gospel ! 

Although the soil and climate of Missouri is very rich, 
and handsomely adapted to the culture of wheat, maize, hemp 
tobacco, cattle, hogs, horses, deer, turkeys, sheep, buffaloes 
and elks, yet, the same soil and climate, will scarcely sprout 
Calvinism. The coldness of the climate cannot be the cause 
of this, for it has l;een ascertained by actual experiment, that 
a cold, or an unusually frigid climate suits the poisonous plant 
best. For instance, let a man travel into the ice-bound re- 
gions of Maine, the frozen regions of Russia, or the more 
moderate plains of Geneva, and before he is aware of it, he 
will find himself coming to the conclusion that, ^'whatever is, 
is right V^ It must be, then, that the good sense of the peo- 
ple of Missouri, obscures from the seeds of Calvinism, as 
fast as they are sown, the sun of prosperity, and causes them 
to pine away and die, before they even sprout. 

Query: Were those <*two or three hundred" souls convert- 
ed under the preaching of the Arminian or Calvinistic doc- 
trines? Surely not under the preaching of Calvinism: For 
I will venture to say, that the bare preaching of Calvinistic 
doctrines never did, nor never will produce a revival. It is 
only when Calvinistic ministers lay aside their distinguishing 
tenets, and become inconsistent, that is, when their preaching 
is at variance with their peculiar doctrines, that they do any 
good. 

What! the preaching of Calvinisin produce a revival ! 

What is there in this doctrine calculated to excite volitions in 

a sinner to seek eternal life? Nothing at all. But there is 

y thing in the doctrine, necessary to make men deists and 

When, therefore, the ministers of this order go forth 



OF PKESBYTERIAKISM. 137 

to hold a camp-meeting, or to do good, they find it most ear- 
pedient to bear the Methodist armour. 

It appears from the minutes of the Missouri Conference, 
for 1833, that there are 52 of our Mounted Rangers, — other- 
wise circuit preachers there, besides a number of local preach- 
ers; and as to our membership, we have 6,103 whites, 756 
colored, and 339 Indians. Besides, the Cumberland Presby- 
terians and Free Will Baptists, are tolerably liUmerous in 
Missouri. > 

In conclusion : Over the whole continent of America, from 
the eastern extremity of Maine, to the wide-spread and luxu- 
riant plains of Florida — from the towering heights of the 
Allegany, to the extreme western plains of Louisiana — from 
the shores of the Atlantic ocean, to the Rocky mountains be- 
yond the Mississippi, there is scarcely the dwelling of a 
white man, or free negro, that has escaped these Presbyterian 
agents and missionaries: — bidden or unbidden, welcome or 
unwelcome, these religious mendicants have entered. On 
the whole inhabited face of this continent, reader, name, if 
you can, the dwelling, from the proud tall mansion of the 
city, to the thatched hut of poverty, or of the forest, whose 
inmates have not been teazed for money, to "evangelize the 
world." With these people, priest and levite, press, pulpit, 
altar and sacrament, high place and low place, '^public walks 
and private ways," have all been put in requisition for the at- 
tainment of more of the mammon of unrighteousness. And be- 
sides these, the fire side, the nursery, and pillow, have been 
made places of assignment, that in the endearment of caress- 
es, the children, the wife, the husband, the servant, and the 
master, might be induced to contribute their hard earnings, 
which other means had failed to obtain. These religious beg- 
gars, and sanctimonious pretenders to extraordinary piety, 
are as importunate too, as the celebrated beggar of London; 
and they are becoming almost as numerous as the beg hards 
who sprang up in Europe, sometime in the thirteenth century. 
They make the cotemporaries of the old apostles to say, we 
need all your ivealth! Did the apostles of Christ, like the 
apostles of Calvin, Hopkins, &.co. bawl money! money! 
'inoneyl and pretend that money was necessary to convert 
the world? Did Christ tell his disciples to bawl and beg of 
every man they met, in his name, for money to enable them 
to save souls? If he did, then these men are justifiable, and 
can bring precept and example to authorise their proceedings. 
But, if Christ never gave such directions, these men ara 
wrong. Christ told his disciples, "provide neither gold, nor 
m2 



138 HBIPS TO THE STUDY 

silver, nor brass, in your purses," &c. evidently meaning 
that the success of his Gospel did not depend upon these 
helps. But modern Presbyterian disciples and apostles, are 
continually bawling money! money! raoney! for the 
'money! Like the daughters of the horseleech, their cry is, 
give! give! give! At a common sacramental meeting, here 
at home, they lift from three to four collections. They are 
the most shameless beggars the world ever produced. Money 
is the aurora borealis of their religion! Saviour! where 
are thy followers straying to? 

But to leave money out of the account, it is hard, to say the 
least of it, that these fit subjects for the Magdalene Asylum, 
should be palmed on the community for preachers of the 
Gospel. If some of them were exhorters in the IMethodist 
church, they would be silenced, solely too, on the ground of 
incompetency! In a course of desultory reading, 1 recollect 
to have seen it stated, that when Frederick, king of Prussia, 
proclaimed his new code of laws, it rendered lawyers unne- 
cessary; and a large body of them memorialized his majesty, 
praying for relief; and enquiring what they were to do? In 
reply, the king is said to have returned this laconic answer: — 
^'Such as are tall enough may enlist for grenadiers, and the 
shortest will do for drummers and fifers.'' Reader, the ap- 
plication is easy. 



CHAPTER IX. 

ANDERSON COUNTY, IN EAST TENNESSEE, A GREAT MORAL 
WASTE. 

The Home Missionary, for 1833, contains a communica- 
tion from the pen of the Rev. Jesse Wimpy, on the subject 
of moral desolations, having the following bold sentence for 
its frontispiece: — ^^how to build churches among the des- 
titute IN TENNESSEE !" Mr. Wimpy says, "I was directed 
to this place in the providence of God, by the fact, that an 
aged lady, a member of the Presbyterian church, resides 
in this part of the country! It is her ardent desire, that the 
Gospel may be preached to them; and her conn^^ions will, 
at least, (observe his grammar) not discountenance!! I have 
at last succeeded in getting the people in one place to make 
some effort (in numbers, he joins the singular and the plural 



or PRBSBYTEUIANISM. 139 

together!) to provide a place for preaching. All the provis- 
ions consist in what is called a shedP' 

Our missionary next proceeds to inform the people toward? 
the rising sun, what he had accomplished among "the desti- 
tute in Tennessee^' — "In this place (Anderson county) I have 
organized a Sabbath school and a Bible class of thirteen mem- 
bers, and might have had a number more, if they had been 
able to trad ! ! At this place (the shed in Anderson county !) 
I held a four day's meeting, including the third Sabbath of 
July. Several of my brethren come to assist. There was 
much feeling, and a few hopeful conversions. '' In conclu- 
sion,. Mr. W. says, that in another settlement, the people 
had ^''promised to build a shed,^^ if he would only preach to 
them, &c. 

Remarks. — With this man Wimpy, I have had a partial 
acquaintance, since the spring of 1828, at which time, and for 
years afterwards, he resided in Maryville, the grand empo- 
rium ofHopkinsian science; where,inthe characterof a ^^poor, 
indigent, pious young man for the ministry, '^ he both ate 
bread and wore clothes, he did not obtain by the sweat of his 
brovv. In the first place, however, he was a member of the 
Methodist church, in the Tellico circuit, and applied for a 
license either to preach or exhort; bu4: in the judgement of the 
proper authorities of said church, he wasthought not to pos- 
sess either gifts qv graces for the work; whereupon he be- 
came displeased, and as I am informed, joined the Hopkin- 
sians. And subsequent events have proven that this opinion 
of the man was correct. For his scull was so impenetrably 
thick, and his perceptive powers so extremely dull, that he 
had to spend well nigh eight years in the seminary, before 
he even acquired a smattering knowledge of some two or 
three of the sciences. In the fall of 1829, 1 published a small 
pamphlet, in which I represented the president of this semi- 
nary, as setting over a nest, warmingand stirring his eggs, and 
hatching o^xi preachers. 

Soon after this pamphlet had appeared, I was called on by 
some of my frienils to explain why it was that Wimpy was 
so long hatching: I replied that he was a sort of goose-egg, 
and that he would require longer time, &c. Twelve monthj< 
after this, it was discovered, that there were still no symp- 
toms of his springing into life, whereupon a shrewd old man 
remarked, ''Wimpy must be a wooden goose-egg!" After 
so long a time, however, he came forth, "as one born out of 
due tirne,^^ though he is still a goslin, and in point of intellect, 
both '*faint and feeble." He weighs somewhere between 



140 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

two and three hundred pounds! — has a quantity of beef above 
his eye-brows — his head being somewhat less than a straw 
bee-gum, — and well nigh as red as a woodpeckers; while he 
moves about with all the vivacity of an old work steer! If 
he possessed less longitude, and a little more latitude, he 
would form a perfect spheriod! Or if his circumftrence 
were greater, so as to make his system a homogeneous sphere 
without rotation, then its attraction on bodies at its surface, 
would be every where the same; and could he then be sus- 
pended in open space, beyond the influence of other attrac- 
tive bodies, he would play for ever, thereby forming the 
perpetual motionl But alas for parson Wimpy! his abdo- 
minal rotundity and corpulent dimensions are such, as to for 
ever prevent his being a proper subject for the investigations 
of philosophy, or the dissertations of science. 

I attended a Methodist camp-meeting in Anderson county,. 
a few weeks after this quarterly report was made out, and 
although gross darkness covered the people, and the young- 
sters were not able to read, yet, Mr. W. was trying to 'Hake 
to himself a wife." Really, the reaction and consecutive 
fever of matrimony, even then, among those heathens, had 
produced quite a morbid phenomenon in his case. But these 
little missionaries all have the "premonitory symptoms" of 
matrimony — others of them are in that state called the i7i- 
cipitnt collapse; whWe others are convalescent. In a word, 
there are none of them but what have ''good desires" on the 
subject of matrimony; and a large majority of them are daily 
seeking an opportunity to "put forth a holy choice!" This 
same Anderson county, is one of the thirteen counties in 
Tennessee, which, a few years ago, were publicly declared to 
be destitute of the means of grace, by the president of the 
seminary at Mary ville. This county, to my own knowledge 
is entirely destitute of Presbyterianism-, ihow^ the Metho- 
dists and Baptists, who are quite numerous there, supply this 
deficiency. 

But no tongue can utter, no pencil can paint, no imagina- 
tion conceive the horrid wickedness which the holy eyes of 
God, daily and nightly see perpetrated in those sections where 
Presbyterianism is not the ism of the day! Thus, heaven- 
daring profanity, the op^n violation of the Sabbath, abomin- 
able licentiousness, gambling, vicious amusements, dishonesty, 
violence, ignorance, and beastly intemperance, are continually 
murdering the souls and bodies of thousands, in the most 
moral and enlightened parts of America, because the inhabi- 
tants to a man, won't bow to the image and superscription the 



OP PRESBTTERIANISM. 141 

Presbyterians have set up ! And to cap the climax, Method^ 
ism, it once the legitimate offspring and prolific parent of these 
and all other crimes, has shot far and wide its deadly roots 
among the inhabitants! For with these men, as is evident 
from the foregoing chapters, Methodism and moral wastes 
are sinonymous terms. Gentlemen, cease your lying and 
slandering, and in future, seek our aid. Misrepresentation 
you have tried in vain. Methodism has too firm a hold upon 
the understandings and affections of the people, for you to 
succeed to any extent without enlisting its influence in your 
favor. The people will believe their own senses sooner than 
they will the scribblings of such as slander them. I hardly 
dare trust myself to pursue this subject. Praying the 
Great Head of the church, to direct you, reader, to the best 
and safest results, I remain yours in the kingdom and pa~ 
tience of Christ. 



CHAPTER X. 

STAWBERRT PLAINS, JEFFERSON COUNTY, EAST TENNESSEE^, 
A MORAL WASTE. 

In the "Initial and Telegraph," for August, 1833, a politi- 
cal paper published in New-Market, I find an account of a 
three day's meeting held by the Rev. James H. Gass, a 
Hopkinsian minister, and the regular pastor of the Hopkin- 
sian church at Strawberry Plains. Mr. Gass headed his 
communications thus, *'great revival!" and after some 
preliminaries goes on to say: "This part of the Lo7'd's 
tnoral vineyard, which has long been shrouded with the 
shroud of moral death, and over which the withering 
VENGEANCE ofthc Almighty God was hanging, has began 
to reviveV^ 

Almost the next sentence is — ''This moral wilderness 
andsoi.iTK^Y-pj.KC'EseemstobegladW^ Andagain: ''The 
barren waste has recently been visited\ ! !" 

This meeting, which lasted several days and nights together, 
would have continued longer it seems, but says Mr. Gass, 
^'having no assistance the meeting had of course to come to 
a close. " Speaking of the high state of feeling while he was 
preaching, he says, <<never have I seen so general and simul- 
taneous a feeling, as was at that time — it was truly as on the 
day of Pentecost, under the preaching of PeterV Once 



14/3 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

more: In relation to the prayer meetings he had held in this 
neighborhood, and also its moral destitution, &c. he remarks: 
^<I held a prayer meeting at Mr. Douglass's, which was the 

riRST RELIOIOUS MEETING EVEH HELD AT THAT HOUSE !" 

Remarks. — This communication I have again and again 
read, and with feelings of horror and repugnance too; and 
though I believe, I am posscs.sed of the charity that "hopeth 
all things,'' yet, so far as Mr. Gass's "great revival" is con- 
cerned, I am destitute of that charity that ^^believetk all 
things." It has fallen to my lot, at this present time, (1834) 
to be travelling in charge of the Dandridge circuit, in the 
bounds of which this '^Strawberry Plains' church"^is situated; 
and I happen to know that there is a society of about forty 
Methodists there. Having read this article the third time, I 
withdrew the paper from my eye, and said to myself — where 
am I? I thought I was in the United States of America — I 
thought I was in East Tennessee. But that cannot be. This 
can be no other than Spain, Portugal, Italy, China, or de- 
graded Africa! And again thought I, \\h2Xeentury do I live 
in? I always thought that I lived in the glorious nineteenth. 
But I must have made a mistake of nine at least. This sure- 
ly must be the tenth century, the darkest of the dark ages — 
called by historians the midnight of time\ This yea?', 
this great prelate James H. Gass, in Je^erson county^ caused 
such a move among the savages of this ^^moral waste,^^ as 
has never been since the "day of Pentecost, under the preach- 
ing of PeterV^ Are the keys of the kingdom in the care of 
this successor of St. Peter? If so, I would like to enjoy his 
approving smiles! Truly, a man unacquainted with the 
moral condition of Jefferson county, would suppose from the 
above history of a particular section of it, that a darkness 
broods over it as palpable as that of Egypt; and that its inhabi- 
tants are at least a half a century behind the march of mind; 
or, that they, like so many unpolished barbarians, are totally 
ignorant of the etiquette of fashionable life! In a subsequent 
number of this paper, our apostle Q.ont\uwQshh revivalintel' 
ligence, in which he says thirteen persons were added to the 
church — all to use his own words, ^^hopeful casesV^ Of 
this lieutenant, ot vicegerent oi St. Peter, I confess I know 
but little, and with him 1 have but little to do, since the com- 
munications and not Mr. Gass, are the subjects of my review; 
and yel, he himself m^k^^s so prominent a part of his two 
essays, that it would be unpardonable to withhold him a pass- 
ing notice. In his first communication, in relation to him* 
self he uses the persontil pronoun 1, eleven times; and in the 



OF PRESBYTEBIANISMr i4^ 

second, speaking of his preaching, exhorting^ prayings calling 
up the anxious, &e. he uses the pronoun I fourteen times^ 
Thus /preached— /exhorted — /invited the anxious— / ad- 
vised them so and so — /heard them say so and so — /never 
witnessed the like — / believe, &c. &e. To parse the diferent 
sentences in his communications syntactically, it will be seen 
that little else is necessary but to understand the first person 
singular, and to repeat the rule eleven times in the first,- and 
fourteen times in the second, and a similar peculiarity, to a 
greater or less extent, in every respect, will be found to 
characterize every paragraph in his two letters. And it will 
be seen upon examination, that not merely the verbage, but the 
sentiment, is thus egotistic throughout. 

Such hollow-headed arrogance, self-importapee,. and false 
insinuation, is enough to shock all who but superficially ob- 
serve the same. The man when in the pulpit, or while pass- 
ing to and fro in society, is said to exhibit a great deal of sheep- 
faced modesty, but when he writes, he exhibits an unusual 
degree of lion-headed impudence. Beside hisfrequent use of 
tlie pronoun I, me, my, mine, &e, too frequently occur to be- 
worth estimating. 

But as it respects the moral and religious conditi&n of this 
section, there were, at the time these pieces were published^ 
in the bounds of the circuit in which this church issituated, 
viz. the old Sulpher spring circuit, twenty local preachersjr 
and about twelve hundred members in regular standing, in 
tlie Methodist church, besides several Baptist and Cumber- 
land Presbyterian congregations. And in the neighborhood 
of this Mr. Douglass's, where our brother Peter says he held 
the first religious nieeting^^^ we had at that time, live socie- 
ties, and regular circuit preaching at each place. 

Beside, in the immediate vicinity of this famous revival 
region, though "solitary place, ^' there were, even then,. two- 
Methodist preachers living, to wit, Messrs. Wilkerson and 
Stringiield, who in point of talents and usefulness, are not 
inferior to any two Hopkinsian preachers in East Tennessee. 

I And yet, strange to relate, this is a <^part of the Lord's moral 
vineyard, which has long been shrouded with the shroud of 
moral death!" But perhaps, brother Peter does not con- 
sider Methodist preachers <<competent" ministers. No veri- 
ly! Presbyterian ministers alone, are the analyzers of light, 
the inventors of fluxions, and the demonstrators of the theory 

I of gravitation ! They are literary stars of the first magnitude ! 
They alone, constitute sytematic encyclopedias of all the 

i learning and science in our country ! Truly, when we are 
■ 



144 H^XPS TO THE STtmY 

among them, we are among spirits of another order. For the 
most df them wander in climes as remote, almost from sci- 
ence, as they do from the true doctrines of Christianity. We 
should know where we are, as readily, by their superficial, 
but pompous prstensions; by their bewildered, but most con- 
jident scientific claims; by their insulting consciousness of 
superiority, and most flippant demands in all the learning of 
the day, as we do by their infuriated and bitter railings against 
the true doctrines of the Bible! Before this brother Peter 
of ours, issues his Third Getieral Epistle, it is hoped, that 
like his name-sake, when the «^great sheet knit at the four 
corners" was let down, "wherein were all manner of four- 
footed beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, 
and fowls of the air," he will discover his error; and instead 
of again publishing to the world an account every way so 
<*common and unclean," it is hoped, he will take his pen and 
write, "Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of per- 
sons." For I repeat, that an individual unacquainted with 
the real condition of Jeflferson county, would suppose from 
Mr. Gass's account of a particular section thereof, that 
wickedness overspread the whole county, while it is full of 
thefts, covetousness, lasciviousness, and almost every species 
of crime. 

Nay, verily, a strange reader could but suppose, that ini- 
quity reigned unto death, uncontrolled, unchecked, and un- 
reproved ! 

In conclusion, I again say, the reports of these little mis- 
sionaries are everi/ way false — false by suppression — false 
by denial — false by misrepresentation. For, it is a princi- 
pal in municipal law, that the suppression of truth is equiva- 
lent to the expression of falsehood; or as the law books say, 
'*the former is more artful knavery." In Paley's System of 
Moral and Political Philosophy, the same sentiment is cor- 
roborated in strong language. And in the Bible we find the 
idea perfected. Should Mr. Gass or any of his friends, think 
proper to reply to the above, I ask no greater favor of him or 
them, than Pope did in his prayer: 



•That mercy I to others show, 
That mercy show to me." 



OF PRESBYTERIAN ISM. 145 

CHAPTER XL 

THEMARYVILLE INTELLIGENCER U^. THE METHODIST CLERGf. 

The '^Maryville Intelligencer," of Feb. 5, 1834, now 
called the Millenial Trumpeter, edited by the Rev. Mr. 
Hoyt, a Hopkinsian priest, contains some strictures on the 
piety and qualifications of the Methodist ministry, under 
the editorial head, which, from the circumstance of their be- 
ing wholly uncalled for, I cannot permit to pass unnoticed. 
This Rev. Editor, in noticing what he calls an '^urgent and 
eloquent appeal to the lay members of the Methodist church 
for the better support of their itinerant clergy," as contained 
in a Methodist paper he had received in exchange, says: 
*^From this appeal it would appear that while the Discipline 
of that church allows but a small salary to their ministers, viz. 
S 1 00 to a young man and ^^200 to a married man, with some fur- 
ther provisions for his family, yet little more than half of even 
that sum is, on an average, obtained by their ministers in 
Tennessee. What can be the cause? Without pretending to 
give a FULL answer to this question, we shall propose a few 
enquiries for the consideration of all whom they may con- 
cern! And first, may not the blame rest, in part, upon the 
MINISTERS THEMSELVES? Were ministers devoted, and 
HUMBLE, and prayerful, as they should be; had they more 
of the ZEAL, and self-denial, and love, to their work, 
which characterized the primitive preachers of the gospel ; 
were their constant preaching and daily deportment such 
as to be a living comment on the apostle's declaration, I seelz 
not yours but you, would they not, by thus gaining the con- 
fidence and affection of the community, be likely to receive 
a better support? Ought a minister who habitually indulges 
in levity, and never appears more in his element than when 
abusing his brethren of other denominations, to lay all the 
blame on the people if he receives (observe his grammar!) not 
a liberal support? We once heard of a minister, who, on 
being interrupted in his discourse, by the entrance of some 
pious young men, of a different denomination, gave vent to 
his levity in something like the following speech, *Be cooly, 
my boys, be cooly, you'r going to hear the gospel, and you 
don't often hear that' This same preacher, in his public 
prayer, offered a petition for the conversion of the minister 
of the place who belonged to another denomination, and for 
the conversioji of all the members of his church, which 
N 



146 HEXFS TO THE STUDY 

prayer was responded to by the loud %^men of an elderly man 
present! Would such an one who thus trifles with sacred 
things have reason to complain, should some of his hearers 
feel reluctant to aid in his support? Have not some, prompted 
by their zeal for God, rushed into the ministry, with neither < 
the TALENTS nor information necessary to make them use- ; 
ful? *The laborer is worthy of his hire.' But he must be ; 
a laborer who understands his work; <a workman that need- 
•ethnotto be ashamed;' — ^thoroughly furnished;' — 'able by 
SOUND doctrine both to exhort and convince the gainsayers;' 
— able to read his message, not second-handed, but in all ' 
ordinary cases, as it is written in the original; — able to go . 
to the fountains of knowledge, and to bring to his aid history 
and science and a disciplined mind, as well as a warm 
heart! 

''Do not some good ministers show more respect to the rich, 
'to him that w^eareth gay clothing,' than to the 'poor man in ' 
vile raiment,' though 'rich in faith?' And by this 'respect of 
persons' diminish not only their usefulness, but their means 
of support? 

"Again: Has there not been a culpable neglect in the train- 
272^ of new-converts.? Have the many thousands, who have been 
received into the communion of the-church, during the late 
revivals, been fully taught the importance of their covenant- 
vows? Have they been taught that in covenanting to be the ' 
Lord's they solemnly vowed to maintain the ordinances of 
his house, and to hold all their property ready to be given 
up at the Lord's bidding? Have they been taught that it is 
as much their duty to give as to pray, and that if they 
neglect the former, the latter will but prove them hyj)Q' 
critesV^ 

Remarks. — To criticise is, at best, an invidious and tire- 
some task, yet I have taken my pen in hand for that purpose, 
and Mr. Hoyt's remarks, in the Intelligencer, present them- 
selves as fit subjects for criticism. First, in presenting plau- 
sible opinions to an intelligent community, I have ever thought, 
that either originality or sound doctrine w^as requisite. Now 
this far-famed editor, in my humble opinion, has no claim to , 
either, unless inconsistency shall be allowed to pass for origin- 
ality, and vague assertions for reason. Now as it regards this 
unpardonable insult, offered to "some pious young men," the 
truth is as follows: The writer of these strictures, was preach- 
ing in the house of Reuben L. Gates, in the town of Mary- 
Adlle, on the evening of the 25th of April, 1831, on the sub- 
ject of disinterested benevolence; and about midway the 



OF PRESBTTERIANISM. fir 

sermon, these *^pious young men" commenced clearing up 
their throats, and shuffling their feet, when the preacher 
remarked: — ^'Keep cool boys, keep cool, we have come to 
preach you the true gospel, and that is what you are not ac- 
customed to in this place." 

As to the piety of these "young men," there were several 
of them, of the same gang, who, as is well known, used to 
rob Jack Freeman's water-melon patch! And if I am not 
sadly mistaken, there was one of the club present, who, but a 
few years before that, had been caught up stairs in the semin- 
!ary, playing cards!! Now, if plundering water-melon 
patches by moon-light, playing cards, and sparking Hopkin-* 
,sian girls, constitute "zeal, and self-denial, aud love" for the 
•work" of the ministry, and entitle men to the appellation of 
ministers "thoroui2;hly furnished;" — and such as are '^able to 
bring to their aid history and science, and a disciplined mind 
as well as a warm heart,'' then indeed, are many of the stu- 
dents of Maryville, eminently qualified for the work of the 
ministry! 

As to the prayer offered up for the minister of the place, 
and the members of his congregation, the ^rz^^/i is as follows: 
I passed through Maryville, early in the month of July, 1833, 
at which tim.e, there was among the Hopkinsians, what they 
called "^a revival;*' and having made a proselyte of a Metho- 
dist member, a Hopkinsianlady of some note, had exultingly 
said, that they then had all the Methodists who were worth 
having; and that they intended soon, to have the old Metho- 
dist meeting house of that place, for Dr. Anderson to put his 
nevv crop of wheat in! To this, I replied, that I would re- 
turn on Thursday week, and that if the people would attend 
'^t the Methodist church, at early candlelight, 1 would thrash 
^ut the Doctor's wheat! Accordingly, I attended, accompa- 
nied by the Rev. Messrs. Gumming and Patton, the former, 
the presiding Elder of the Knoxviile District, and the latter, 
the preacher in charge of the Maryville circuit. Well, we 
had a large audience, and among the rest, nearly all the "pi- 
bus young men" of the place. In my "public prayer," be- 
fore I read my text, I did "offer a petition" to the Lord, to 
Continue and increase the revival then going on, till all the 
^Dcople and preachers of the place were soundly converted, 
I also "offered a petition" in these words: "Forbid Oh Lord ! 
^hat the people of this place should any longer take the sha- 
dow for the substance, as they have been accustomed to do." 
But no exclusive reference was made to any particular minis- 
ter. Nor did Mr. Gumming, the "'elderly man" alluded to, 



148 HEiPS TO THE STUDY 

respond with a '^loud amen;" though I have but little doubt 
that, both himself and Mr. Patton approved of the prayer; 
and I know it was "offered" in sincerity. Now is it not 
every way unjust, to misrepresent facts in relation tO a cer- 
tain man, and then to publish the narrative in such way, that 
every one who reads it, will fix suspicion on that man? Well 
might the awful voice of that well known writer and Chris- 
tian, Bunyan, speak forth and say: 

*'0 slander! tby envenom'd tongue 
Concentrates all the malice of all fiends." 

And the psalmist David, when peculiarly impressed with the 
» transcending enormity of this aggravated sin, breaks outin adi- 
rectenquiry of ^^Lord, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? Who 
shall dwell in thy holj^ hill?*' The answer is from the Lord 
himself. He answ^ers negatively ^ "He that backbiteth not 
with his tongue; (or pen) nor doeth evil to his neighbor, nor 
taketh up a reproach against his neighbor." The words 
backbite, and backbiter, are derived from the Anglo-Saxon, 
brother Hoyt, and in the expressive original, fully convey 
the treble sense of knavishness, cowardice, and brutality. 
For, certainly, he is a knave who would rob you of your good 
name; he is a coward that would speak evil of you in your 
absence, when he would not dare to do so in your presence; 
and only an ill-natured dog would fly at, and bite you while 
your face was turned from him. All these three ideas are 
conveyed to the mind, when w^e use the word — backbite; and 
they all meet in the detractor and calumniator, whether in 
church or state. This tongue is that of a knave, a coward 
and a dog. And I am sorry to say, that such plants are to be 
found in great abundance in the meridian of Maryville! But 
w^as there a blot in the copy of this famous prayer and reproof 
furnished for the Intelligencer? Or was the hlot in the optics 
of its pious and truth-loving editor? 

Again: I think the charge of a want of "talents" and of 
"information,'' on the part of the Methodist ministry, comes 
with quite an ill grace from the town of Maryville, and more 
especially when made by a Hopkinsian preacher. For, al- 
though Dr. Anderson, has been making preachers at the fac- 
tory in that town, for a number of years past, and has never 
failed to iron, starch, and finish off, a half a dozen or more, 
annually; yet, I have never heard more than /i^;oof hismake, 
who deserved even the name ot preachers, though I have 
heard many of them try to preach. That Anderson^ s make 
of clergymen, cannot preach, is quite proverbial, throughout 
all East Tennessee. 



OF PRESEYTERIANISMa 1*9 

I repeat, I have heard many of these "pious young, men;" 
and I yet recollect, and never can forget the texts, — the con- 
Venticle act of countenance and features, sour aspect, — and 
voices naturally unpleasant, with Anderson's twang, and de- 
livered at the same time, in the true ^^ down-east^'' dialect, as 
says Maj. Downing. Oh! for the pen of a Smollett, or the 
pencil of a Hogarth! that I might imprint on paper, or fix on 
canvass, a true representation of both the men, and the mat- 
ter and manner of their little .y/^eec^e^/ Truly, as Downing 
says, they are '^genoine down-east ersV^ 

Only two months after the publication of this article, I was 
at a Presbytery in Maryville, and heard two of the '^pious 
young men" of the place, undergo an examination, &c. &c. 
Doctor Anderson proposed the following sentence for them 
to parse: "This is the year one thousand eight hundred and 
thirty four." Well, they first took up the relative, then the 
verb, next the article, and next the noun, till they come to 
the *'o?ie," and lo! they could go no further without help! 
Exclaimed I to myself, gracious alive! is this "history and 
science?" It may not be amiss, just here, to add a few verses 
of poetry. 

The st;minary's justly fam'd, 

For men of talents brig-ht! 
Her sons by title just, are nam'd, 

The sous of science, sons of lig'ht! 

The sons of science now arise! 

To lig-hten this benig-hted land, 
And mental darkness trembling- flies. 

Before this pious scientific band! 

Then let the world with one loud voice. 

Make hill and dale, and valley ring; 
Let the exulting sun rejoice, 

And planets in their courses sing! 

They scorn all wealth and glittering- gold, " 

They scorn the lustre silver gives; 
And strange to say and to behold. 

On charity's cold hand they live.' 

These are the men who are qualified for the work oi the 
ministry, while the Methodist preachers "prompted by their 
zeal for God, have rushed into the ministry, with neither the 
talents nor the information necessary to make them useful!" 
iacknowledge the inability of the Methodist clergy in many 
things. They have not strength of mind to comprehend 
things that are not, and that never were; they cannot pene- 
n2 



450 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

trate the thick cloud encircling the hidden counsels and secret | 
will of God, as held by Calvin, Hopkins, & co. ; they do not 
possess that skill in Geneva logic by which they can make it 
appear that twice five is not ten in France as well as in Eng- 
land; or that all means but d.part\ they have not the art of 
finding out God's secret will, which in every respect contra- 
dicts his revealed will; they cannot see how it is that God 
can be just, and yet, unconditionally reprobate the most 
of mankind to an eternal hell, without any reference to 
their own voluntary conduct. These things, I say, the ca- 
pacities of Methodist preachers are too circumscribed to 
understand; but they have that which will, perhaps, equally 
recommend them to the American people — I mean such a 
sense of their weakness and deficiency as forbids their under- 
taking such hellish exploits. 

But the reason why Methodist preachers are 'hashed into 
the ministry" is, they are generally called of God to the 
work; and by the same authority, they are taught to believe^ 
that the King's business requires haste. In this respect, the 
Presbyterian clergy have decidedly the advantage of them; 
that is to say, they are generally called by their parents and 
guardians, who, it seems, allow them to spend from five to 
eight years at a theological seminary, to make the necessary 
preparations; or to <<bringto their aid history and science, and 
a disciplined mind." 

But it is supposed by this clerical editor, that Methodist 
preachers^are not ^^able by souj^d doctrine both to exhort and 
convince the gainsayers." Soimd doctrine indeed! The 
Methodist doctrines which have been misrepresented and 
caricatured by a thousand slanderous tongues and pens, have 
at length become the most popular — otherwise <«sound;" and 
the good sense of the community causing them to decide in 
their favor, all other denominations are trying to preach 
them. In doctrines, indeed, the Methodists have the happi- 
ness of a unanimity through the whole extent of their work, 
unexampled, perhaps, in almost any other denomination. At 
least, the Presbyterian church in the United States, does not 
afford an example of the kind. Since the system of divinity 
set forth by Dr. Hopkins, of Newport, R. I., which is not 
yet half a century, Calvinism has taken as many shades, and 
received as many modifications, as there are points of the 
compass. And, verily, in view of the conflicting interests 
of different theological seminaries and colleges, both among 
old school and new school Presbyterians, we are warranted 
in the belief that none of them will remain of the same opin- 



OF PKESBYTERIAjriSM. 151 

ion more than six or twelve months together. What! have 
matters come to this that a man belonging to one of the many 
jjrongs of the Presbyterian church, cannot be trusted to keep 
his faith over a year at a time! We are giving quite a dis- 
tressing account of the church in the nineteenth century^ 
when we are compelled to say her faith is not yet settled! 

Of a truth, I may say, Presbyterian preachers in this our 
day, ^ ^become all things to all men, if by any means they 
may gain some.'' 

In fact, should we attempt to judge of their doctrines from 
their preaching, we would say of them, as Davy Crockett 
has said of politics in the United States: — ''They do not 
keep in one way long enough to form any opinion about them." 
And from their refusing either to preach or publish their real 
sentiments, one would suppose they fully agree with Crockett 
in the following opinion:— "Written opinions often get • 
mightily in a man's way sometimes, and his friends can man- 
age his election to a better advantage without them. " Indeed, 
I have often discovered, that a Hopkinsian priest could man- 
age an anxious person, or one he wished to proselyte, much 
better v/ithout the Confession of Faith, than with it! 

With respect to the Confession of Faith, during a revival, ^ 
it is to a Presbyterian preacher, as Saul's armor was to David - 
— it will not fit! And I have even heard of (heir getting ' 
some persons to join their church, by assuring them, that the 
General Assembly of the Presbyterian church was goino- to ^ 
alter the Confession of Faith! What duplicity! I would 
heartily recommend the "sacramental host of God's elect " ' 
to adopt a creed, or system of faith, which fishermen, shep- ' 
herds, and gatherers of sycamore fruit can understand and * 
defend, better than their theological students, or even their - 
doctors of divinity ! But it is said, a minister should be ^ 
''able to read his message, not second-handed, but, in all or- t 
dinary cases, as it is written in the original, " That is to say, 
he should be "able," (as are the Presbyterian preachers ' 
generally) when he ascends the sacred desk, to draw from his 
pocket a long black roll in the form of a tobacco pouch) and ^ 
haying taken therefrom a little paper book, and having slipped • 
it into his Bible, to "read" its contents to the people, "not ' 
"second-handed," but as the same stands in the book from -* 
which he borrowed it\ And yet, these dogmatical, super- • 
cilious, communicative, and shining pedants^ who act thus, t 
are held up to all other ministers as a model for them to go - 
by ! What a pity Homer, Horace, Virgil and Ovid, had not ^ 



453 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

lived in this age, that they might have enjoyed the learned 
counsel of these famous scholars! 

Lord Chesterfield of England, as well as Professor Aristip- 
pus of Syracuse, (so far as polite learning is concerned) were 
both fools, when compared with the beaux esprits of our 
times! But alas! Presbyterian ministers too generally, take 
less pains to be polite and learned, than to appear so. Were 
they to take as much pains to be what they ought, as they do 
to disguise what they «re, they might appear like theinselves, 
without being at the trouble of any disguise at all. And this 
they ought to do, for no disguise can conceal merit, where it 
is, nor feign it, where it is not. And as proof of this, tlie 
common people have become unwilling to believe any longer, 
that the Presbyterian clergy are, as it were, nature's art of 
eloquence, handsomely epitomised, and fraught with infalli- 
ble rules! 

Once more: Mr. Hoytsays, some ministers "diminish not 
only their usefulness, but their means of support," by show- 
ing "more respect to the rich,'' than to the '-^poor man in vile 
raiment." That some Methodist preachers, in some in- 
sfanceSf have acted out this kind of partiality, there is but 
little room to doubt. At the same time, that this is, and aU 
ways has been, a comrtion practice with the Presbyterian 
clergy, is as evident as that two and two are four. And it is 
a little surprising, thata Presbyterian clergyman, knowing as 
he must, that himself and his clerical associates are so vulner- 
able on this point, would venture to touch the subject at all. 
They will take wealthy and influential men into their church, 
according to rule, contrary to rule, and over the head of 
every thing like rule. For instance, an honorable circuit 
Judge in East Tennessee, but a few years ago, remarked to a 
lawyer of his acquaintance, that he had determined to join the 
church, sayingthathe believed it would be of service to him, 
&c. His friend asked him what church he intended to join: 
his reply was, that he intended to join the Presbyterian 
church. but, said the lawyer, they won't have you with- 
out religion, and you say you have none, therefore you will 
have to join the Methodists. But, said the Judge in reply, 
<HvE (myself and the preacher,) have arranged that mat- 
ter!''^ I will mention one other case. A certain kinky- 
headed, square-built, sour-looking, self-conceited little Hop- 
kinsian preacher, who is now living on a fine farm in East 
Tennessee, which he obtained in a way that must forever 
sink him in the estimation of honest men, once requested a 
man of great wealth to walk out with him, and to converse 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 



153 



with him on the subject of religion, &c. &c. Well, having 
stepped aside, and having introduced the subject, the parson 
told the gentleman, he ''must join the church, and join it 
now. " But said the gentleman, ^<I have no religion, and the 
rules of your church don't allow of my joining without it." 
said the parson, ''P II fix that!'' This disgusted the 
man, and he turned off and left him, as he himself after- 
wards said. It is quite proverbial, that the Presbyterian min- 
istry, in theirintercourse with the rich and the great, in order 
to win their affections, and command their esteem, labor to 
set forth in bold relief, a suavity of manners, a placability of 
temper, and a sweetness of disposition ! 

Nor is this a mere studied desire to please only, but the 
spontaneous effect of their deceptive theology. These men 
are famed, throughout the entire limits of the Union, for 
their skulking, proselyting and electioneering manoeuvres I 
May kind heaven keep me from ever stooping so low ! Let 
me rather say with the poet: — 

*'No glory I covet, nor riches I want, 

Ambition is nothing to me; 
The one thing I beg of kind Heaven to grant, 

Is a mind independent and free.*' 

In conclusion, our editor charges us as ministers, with a 
shameful neglect of duty, in that we have failed to teach the 
"many thousands who have been received into the church," 
that it "is as much their duty to give as io pray,'' &c. &c. 

I confess very readily, that the Methodist clergy have 
neglected to instruct their people to this effect. First, they 
do not believe the doctrine; and next, the Presbyterians made 
an experiment in the matter in 1826, and it took so badly 
among the people, that we have never had fortitude to name 
it, if we even had the disposition at heart. The Presbyte- 
rian clergy, in 1826, throughout East Tennessee, introduced 
the tithe-paying system, and preached to the people, that 
the Mosaic law in relation to this subject, was never abrogated, 
and, that it was still binding on the community, to pay one 
tenth of all their income, for the support of religion. Messrs. 
Anderson, Eagleton, Gallaher, Ross and others, preached 
and sanctioned the doctrine in the pulpit, in various places. 
And several of these reverend gentlemen, gave it as their 
opinion, that the omission of this duty, on the part of the 
membership, was the reason why their crops of wheat, &c. 
were not more abundant; saying, that God, as a punishment 
of their criminal derelictions of duty, sent the fly, and de- 
stroying insect, to lay waste their grain ! While some of the 



154 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

elders^ and oih^r nominal officers of the Presbyterian churcli, 
were \Yarmly inspired with the belief of the divine origin 
and superiority of the tithing system, it is due to the great 
body of said church to say they kicked up at it! Now, if 
Hopkinsian Calvinists, who possess so much disinterested 
benevolence, cannot be brought to bow to the tithing system, 
what ought we to expect of Methodists, who do not believe 
the doctrine? Will brother Hoyt, please give the public, with 
his usual freedom, his opinion, in relation to this question? 
My opinion in relation to this whole matter, is, that those 
who thus preach and write, are doubtless, reaching after more 
than their just due. For the effects of the tithing system, 
we need only look into the present and past history of France, 
Spain and England. In Frknce, the contingent perquisites, 
paid to the clergy of the established church, far surpasses the 
regular salaries allowed them by the French government. 
In Spain, the regular income of the clergy, is double that of 
the Spanish government. In England, the doctrine of tithes 
lias existed as long as her political establishment, and has be- 
come more and more oppressive; till, of late, there seems to 
be a desperate struggle to get rid of the evils of the system. 
And yet, grievous and unrighteous as is this system, the Pres- 
byterians are laboring to new model, and re-organize it in the 
United States. Therefore, salaries, tithes, &c. &c. are not 
irrelevant here: and more especially since this editor's intro- 
duction of them; for the principle is the same in all coun- 
tries. Last of all; — our Saviour, when here on earth, neither 
received tithes, as a preacher himself, nor inculcated the pay- 
ment of them, upon others. The apostles, it is well known, 
neither preached the doctrine of tithes nor realized its effects, 
which they certainly would have done, when they spoke of 
supporting the ministry, if they had considered the Mosaic 
economy still in force. The whole scheme, therefore, is the 
policy of designing clergymen. And the misery is, the 
great mass of their people, are not only ignorant of this 
their leading policy, but alas, of their inconsistent doctrines. 



OP PRESBYTBRIANISM, 155 

CHAPTER XII. 

A REVIEW OP REV. WIMPY's CATECHISM ON CHURCH GOV- 
ERNMENT 

It was my lot to enter on public life at a time when East 
Tennessee was visited, by what I esteem one of its sorest 
scourges; I mean, by a revival of the spirit of Calvinistic in- 
tolerance and persecution. I almost saw the commencement 
of those systematic efforts, which have been • since develop- 
ed, for fastening on the community the peculiar dogmas of 
Hopkinsian Calvinism. Opinions which learned and pious 
men of other orders thought true and Scriptural, were not 
only assailed as errors^f but branded as crimes. Then began 
anew, what seems to me, one of the gross immoralities of 
our times, the practice of aspersing the characters of exem- 
plary men, on the ground of differences of opinion in mat- 
ters of religious belief. 

Then began those assaults on the doctrines, discipline and 
government, of the Methodist Episcopal Church, which, had 
they succeeded, would have prostrated her, and put an end 
to the usefulness of her ministry. And although times have 
changed for the better, still, it is in a measure, perilous to 
search the scriptures for ourselves, and to speak freely ac- 
cording to the convictions of our own minds — especially in 
the pulpit. 

I verily believe that the Hopkinsians of this country, are 
the most inveterate and implacable foes that Methodism has 
to contend with, in this or any other quarter of the globe. 
Some ho^iorable exceptions no doubt, there are; but as a 
body, they are the sworn apostles of bigotry, and servility, 
and slander. The work now under review, justifies me in 
thus speaking, if there were no other cause for it. And, to 
me, it is a painful consideration that the spirit and matter of 
this servile production, requires a plainness of speech, which, 
under any other circumstances, would seem uncalled for. I 
would rather persuade than abuse, — I would rather move the 
judgment than the passions — 1 would have zeal, but I would 
have it ^ ^according to knowledge.^' For, those who make 
the experiment, will doubtless find that it requires no little 
prayer and watchfulness, to conduct a controversy of this 
sort, and at the same time, preserve that tranquillity of mind 
and equanimity of temper so requisite for the impartial in- 
vestigation of truth, and not less necessary for the peace and 



156 HEIPS TO THE STUDT 

spiritual prosperity of the soul. This consideration howev« 
er, weighty as it is, will not justify us in ceasing to <<contend 
earnestly for the faith. ^' Because, in the variety of sects 
with which the christian community is divided in our day, it 
is not to be expected that such an agreement can be effected 
as to prevent all controversy. Undefiled religion does not yet 
exert such an influence over the hearts and lives of its pro- 
fessed friends and advocates, as entirely to overcome those 
foibles which are discoverable in sectarian partialities. But 
my warfare, I humbly trust, has been directed and influenced 
by a trembling sense of my fearful and high responsibility 
to God. 

The work under consideration, is entitled "A short and 
easy catechism on church government, for the use of Presby- 
terian Families and Congregations. Printed for J. Wimpy ! 
Printed at Maryville, Tennessee, 183S." The reader will 
observe, that the title page, in saying ^ Sprinted for J. Wimpy," 
authorizes the belief that Mr. W. is the author of the work. 
But Mr. Wimpy, in every sense, is as far from being the 
author of this catechism, as I am from being the real author 
of Tom Paine's Age of Reason. I will venture to predict, 
however that the day of judgment, will fix the authorship of 
this malignant little work, upon a reverend gentleman who 
resides in Maryville, the first letter of whose name is, Isaac 
Jlnderson! Wim{)y, therefore, in the hands of this man, 
has permitted himself to be made a cafs paw of — a mere 
tool or stalking-horse, by which the real writer shelters him- 
self from the notice of the public eye. Poor Wimpy ! 

I will commence with the 38th question, on page 7th. 

'Who is the supreme visible head of the Catholic church? 

Jins. The Pope. 

39. Who is the supreme visible head of the Church of 
England? 

Jins. The King. 

41. Who is the supreme visible head of the Methodist 
church in America? 

Ans. Their Bishops ! ! ! 
' 42. Who is the supreme visible head of the Congrega- 
tional, Baptist, and Presbyterian churches ! 

^ns. They acknowledge no visible head. They say an 
invisible head, the Lord Jesus Christ, is sufficient without 
any visible head. 

43. Which of all the Episcopal churches are the most 
monarchial in their form of government, in these United 
States? 



or PRESBYTERIANISM* 157 

^.fiis. The Methodist. On which account many have 
broken off and formed a new churcli. 

44. What is the Presbyterian form of church govern- 
ment? 

*.9ns. ^i repi'csentative republic, ^^ 

While this Catechism was in manuscript, "John Wesley 
and the bishops" were declared by it to be the head of the 
Methodist church, and the phrase^ ^supreme visible head" 
was not in it. But before it went to the press, it was deemed 
proper to make these alterations. And still, it needs to be 
revised again, and again, and again; for it certainly abounds 
with false statements, and false insinuations. That the Metho- 
dists do not regard John Wesley or their bishops, in the same 
light in which the Congregationalists, Baptists, and Presby- 
terians do the Lord Jesus Christ, neither this slanderous 
writer, or any other person of common sense, will presume 
to deny. 

But because of Methodist despotism, ^-many have broken 
off and formed a new church!" 

That a certain set of malcontents, called Protestant 
Methodists, who were < ^conceived in sin," — <^shapen in 
iniquity,"— and **born out of due time," have left us, and 
*^formed a new church," is even so. 

But so far from the Methodist Episcopal church having 
sustained any injury from this secession, she hasactuaily been 
benefited by it. Nor is this a plausible objection to the go- 
vernment of any church. If it were, it would lie with equal 
weight against the government of the Presbyterian church, 
inasmuch as a sect called the Cumberland Presbyterians, 
seceded from the general Presbyterian church, in 1810. Re* 
collect, ye our friends, that two and two make four in France, 
as well as in England! Again: Is tUe government of South 
Carolina "monarchial" because a set of fanatics called nulli- 
jiers were unwilling to submit to it.^ Certainly not. What 
contemptuoussneering might be hurled againstsuch sophistry ! 
As to the republicanism of the Presbyterian church, I will 
give it a respectful notice before I close this review. 

<^74. Is there then but one order of ministers according to 
the New Testament? 

»,ins. But one. 

75. What then are we to think of the grades of ministers 
called Popes, Arch-Bishops, Metropolitan Bishops, Diocesan 
Bishops, Bishop, Presiding Elder, Deacon> Priest, Circuit- 
Rider ,&c. 



•158 HE IPS TO THE STUDT 

•^ns. They are the invention of man, and without any war- 
rant from the word of God." Page 11th. 

Among Presbyterian and Congregational churches, a min- 
ister is ordained but once, and this ceremony constitutes him 
an elder or bishop, as they use these terms synonymously. 
And because we as Methodists, have more ordinations than 
one, and designate our ministers by diflferent titles, our Pres- 
byterian friends labor to make it appear, that we have differ- 
ent orders of ministers, and that our bishops and presiding 
elders, are looked upon by us as a higher order, which they 
know is a mistake, charity forbiding me to say a falsehood. 
You beat the air gentlemen, and evince an amazing want of 
acquaintance with our economy, or else a lamentable want of 
candor in stating it. We believe that bishops and pres- 
byters, are the same orders, and consequently have the 
same right to ordain. Gentlemen, I presume you are aware 
that the name bishop is Scriptural, and was applied to some 
of the first ministers of the gospel in the same sense that we 
apply it. But, learned as you arc, I presume that many of 
you are so ignorant as to need to be informed, that the word 
bishop, comes from the Greek word which signifies an over- 
seer, inspector, or superintendent. It is in this sense pre- 
cisely, that we apply this term to those men whom we have 
ordained bishops. Mr. Wesley well knew the difference 
between the q^ce and the title. He knew and felt the ardu- 
ous duties and high responsibility which attaches to the one, 
and the comparative nothingness of the other. He gave to 
those whom he ordained bishops, the modest, but highly ex- 
pressive title of superintendents, and desired that no other 
might be used* See Moore's life of Wesley, vol. ii, p. 280. 

The profoundly learned Dr. Adam Clarke, and that most 
able and eloquent divine, the Rev. Richard Watson, publicly 
declared, in the British conference held in Liverpool, in 1820, 
that our Episcopacy, is a true, actual, scriptural Episcopacy, 
of the most genuine and apostolical character. The same 
is also true, according to the writings of Dr. Stillingfleet. 

In further consideration of the ministry, (so far as the 
Methodist Episcopal church is concerned) I will subjoin the 
following extract from a report of the general conference of 
1828, on '^petitionsand memorials:" — <'The great Head of 
the church himself has imposed on us the duty of preaching 
the gospel, of administering its ordinances, and of maintain- 
ing its moral discipline among those over whom the Holy 
Ghost, in these respects, has made us overseers. Of these 
also, namely, of gospel doctrines, ordinances, and moral dis- 



OF PRESBTTEIIIANISM. 15^ 

cipJine, we do believe that the divinely instituted ^inis> 
TRY are the divinely authorised expounders^ and that 
the duty of maintaining them in their purity, and of not per^ 
mitting our ministrations, in these respects, to be authorita- 
tively controlled by others, does rest upon us with the force 
-of a moral obligation, in the due discharge of which our con- 
sciences are involved. " 

<<76. What rights and privileges are secured to the private 
members of the church by the laws of Christ? 

^ns. The right of choosing their own officers. 

77. Have Methodists this right? 

Jins. They have not the right of choosing ^\\ their church 
officers, if they have the right of choosing any of theinJ^ 

A church, according to Walker, is **The collective body 
of christians; the place consecrated to the worship of God, 
assembly of christians." A christian church then, I consid- 
er to be a society of faithful and holy men, voluntarily asso- 
ciated for the purposes of public worship,' mutual edification, 
the participation of the Lord's Supper, and the propagation 
of Christianity: the Lord Jesus Christ is its spiritual Head; 
and only such as have given themselves unto the Redeemer, 
and are spiritually united to Him, are members. Now, that 
the members composing any one church, have a right to 
choose their officers I readily allow; and that this right has 
not been denied the members of the Methodist church, I will 
show in the sequel. But, before I proceed further, I will say 
something on the subject of church tiials-, and this I do the 
more readily, because the Presbyterians are always harping 
on the unlimited power of a circuit preacher, presiding el- 
der, or bishop. 

As much has been said respecting our disciplinary manner 
of bringing to trial disorderly persons, I will first quote the ar- 
ticle from the discipline, and, secondly, make a few remarks 
upon it. 

^* Quest. How shalljan accused member be brought to trial? 

*.djis. Before the society of which he is a member, or a se- 
lect number of them, in the presence of a bishop, elder, dea- 
con, or preacher, in the following manner;— Let the accused 
and the accuser he brought face to face; but if this cannot be 
done, let the next best evidence be procured. If the accus- 
ed person be found guilty by the decision of a majority of 
the members before whom he is brought to trial, and the 
crime be such as is expresisly forbidden by the word of God, 
sufficient to exclude a person from tho kingdom of grace and 
glory, let the minister or preacher who has the charge of the 



I 



1 6iJ HE LPS f T H E S T U D Y 

circuit, ^xpel him. If the accused person evade a trial by 
absenting himself, after sufficient notice given him, and the 
circumstances of the accusation be strong and presumptive, 
let him be esteemed as guilty, and be accordingly excluded. 
— Witnesses from without shall not be rejected.^' 

Again, says our Discipline: "If there be a murmur or 
complaint from^any excluded person, in any of the above- 
mentioned instances, that justice has not been done, he shall 
be allowed an appeal, to the next quarterly meeting confer- 
ence, except such as absent themselves from trial, after 
sufficient notice is given them: and the majority of the 
travelling and local preachers, exhorters, stewards, and lead- 
ers present, shall finally determine the case.'' 

That part of this section which has been most objected to, 
is the liberty of bringing a person to trial before a '^select 
number'' of the society, because it allows ihe jjreacher the 
liberty of choosing the committee, and therefore gives him* 
an advantage over the accused, which may prove prejudicial 
to the interests of one or the other of the parties concerned. 
To this grave objection I reply, the parties are always allow- 
ed to reject any person or persons against whom a scriptural 
or reasonable objection can be raised. This, therefore, will 
always prevent an oppressive or unjustifiable operation of the 
rule. Beside this, an accused member in the Methodist 
church, if he choose, can have the liberty of being tried by 
the society of which he is a member, in committee of the 
whole. 

As to ^Hvitnesses from without," it is plain to be seen, that 
we will hear them, and if they be respectable we will credit 
w^hat they say. Nor does it matter with us, whether they 
are members of any church or not. But, both the old~side- 
Presbyterians, and Cumberlands, frequently require persons 
not of their order, to be sworn; and some for refusing to be 
sworn, have been rejected. As to the Baptists, they are de^- 
cidedly of the opinion, that persons not of their fold, are in- 
capable of telling or even swearing the truth, on an occasion 
of this kind. But let us compare our mode of trial with the 
'^Church Session" of the Presbyterian church. 

"The church session consists of the pastor or pastors and 
ruling elders of a particular congregation." 

Once more: "This church session is charged with main- 
taining the spiritual government of the congregation; for 
v^rhich purpose they have power to inquire into the knowledge 
and christian conduct of the members of the church; to call 
before them offenders and witnesses, being members 07^ 



or PRBSBYTBRIAI^ISM. ±61 

THEIR OWN CONGREGATION, and to introduce other witnesses 
where it may be necessary to bring the process to trial, and 
when they can be procured to attend; to receive members in- 
to the church; to admonish, to rebuke, to suspend, or ex- 
clude from the sacraments, those who are found to deserve 
censure; to concert the best measures for promoting the spir- 
itual interests of the congregation, and to appoint delegates 
to the higher judicatories of the church." [See constitution, 
&:c. of the Presbyterian church, p. 356.] Now though these 
* ^ruling elders'^ are chosen by the congregation, they are nev- 
ertheless chosen for life, as the sanie authority says. 

Here, then, is d. perpetual ecclesiastical court,' to which, 
however serious or weighty may be the objections against 
any or all of them, the supposed offender must submit his 
cause. 

And while this ecclesiastical tribunal created ex-officio^ 
made up of officers chosen for life, ^'receive members into'^ 
the Presbyterian church, a member is '-'received into" the 
Methodist church, by the voice of a whole class! And it 
may not be amiss, to state just here, that in the Presbyterian 
Confession of Faith, it is said, that to these "ruling elders" 
are committed the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and that 
they have power to remit or retain sins. 

Why, verily, they are fair Popes of fellows! Methodist 
preachers, exhorters, stewards, and leaders, have no such 
power as this. If Presbyterian clergymen will look to their 
own church government, they will find defects and blemish- 
es enough to call into action all the powers of their gigantic 
minds, without wasting their time and talents, in trying to 
improve the government of the Methodist Episcopal church. 
But more of the catechism. 

''7S. What second right is secured to the people by the 
laws of Christ? 

Jins. The right of being represented in ecclesiastical judi- 
catures by delegates of their own choosing. 

79. Have Methodists this right? 

Ans. They have not. See their discipline^ 

80. What other right is secured to the people? 

Ans. To choose their own pastor, and to have him to re» 
side among them. 

81. Have Methodists this right? 
A?is. They have not. " " 

Now, whoever will compare our mode of electing dele- 
gates, will perceive that oui Annual and General Conferences 
derive their authority, to say the least of it, as much from the 
o2 



t 



±62 HEXFS TO THK STtJllY 

people, as do the Presbyteries, Synods, and General Assem- 
bly, of the Presbyterian church. Indeed I will venture to 
affirm that the delegates who compose the General *dssem- 
blyoi the Presbyterian church, the highest and most impor- 
tant ecclesiastical court pertaining to that church, do not, in 
any instance, hold their seats by the voice of the people. 
The following are the provisions of their government in this^ 
case:— 

««The general assembly shall consist of an equal delegation 
of bishops and elders from each j^re^^^/er^, in the following 
proportion, namely: Each presbytery consisting of not more 
, than nine ministers, shall send one minister and one elder." 
Constitution, &c. p. 364. Now as these elders or delegates 
must be "ruling elders," they must be selected by themselves, 
and out of their own body, neither hy the people nor from 
among the people. Therefore, when they are sent as c?e/e» 
gate^ to the general assembly, so far from being chosen by 
the people, they are chosen by the seversil presbyteries. 

It will certainly puzzle the best logician in our countr)^, to 
«how more republicanism in this mode of electing delegate&v 
than there is in our mode of electing them to our general con- 
ferences. 

As to our church choosing her own pastors, first, as before 
observed, all persons are received into society by the class, 
and not by the preacher. Secondly, no man can be licensed 
to preach among us, unless first recommended by the class to 
which he belongs. Thirdly, he must be examined before a 
quarterly meeting conference— where, in the general, there 
are not more than two travelling preachers who have a vote — 
and he must be approved of by that body, before he can be 
allowed to preach. When thus licensed, he must be recom- 
mended by the same quarterly conference, to an annual con- 
ference as a suitable person to travel. And as the circuit 
which recommends a man to an annual conference, is just as 
apt to get that man for their preacher, as almost any other 
circuit, they are always careful not to recommend any man^ 
but such an one as they are willing to receive in turn. When 
a man is received, and sent on a circuit, he is among a people 
who have an importunity of witnessing his whole conduct, 
and on whose volunta7y contributions he is entirely depend- 
ent for his support, and who have a right to complain to the 
proper authorities, if he does not conduct himself as he should 
do; and these authorities are bound to attend to such com- 
plaint If it be said, that when thus licensed, he is beyond 
the reach of the people, I reply, he is not so far beyond the 



OF PBESBYTEKIANISH* i§5 

reach of the people, as a Presbyterian preacher is. Every 
man, the very moment he becomes eligible to a seat in a 
presbytery, is clearly out of the hands of the people. 

On page 61, latest edition of the Methodist Discipline, and 
Sec. xviii. we have the following account of the method of 
bringing to trial, a circuit preacher, and a presiding elder. 

*<Let the presiding elder in the absence of a bishop, call as 
many travelling ministers as he shall think fit, at least three- 
and if possible bring the accused and the accuser ia^c^ to face. 
If the person be clearly convicted, he shall be suspended from 
all official service in the church. But if the accused be a 
presiding elder, the preachers must call in the presiding el- 
der of the neighboring district, who is required to attend and 
preside at the trial. If the accused and accuser cannot be 
brought face to face, but the supposed delinquent flees from 
trial, it shall be received as presumptive proof of guilt- and 
out of the mouth of two or three witnesses he shall be con 
demned." 

For the trial of a bishop, see Sec. iv. page 26. Our bish 
ops are subject to be tried by seven elders and two deacons 
for any immorality, or supposed crime; and may be suspend- 
ed by two-thirds of these, not only from all public offices but 
even from being private members of the church. This mode 
subjects our bishops to a trial before a judicature greatlv in 
ferior to that of an annual conference. For there is not one 

1 J annual conferences which will not, probably, be at- 
tended by more presiding elders and deacons, than the eon- 
lerence which is authorized to try a bishop, the annual confer 
ences consisting of from thirty to an hundred members and 
upwards. Finally, as defective as the government of the 
Methodist church is, I have never known any case to occur, 
but what could be settled in some way, by the authorities of 

^!u ""'i^' .^^.^ '^ "^'^^ ^^^ Presbyterian church. Look 
at the affair, for instance, between the Rev. Messrs A and 
^ .u ^r ^/ Tennessee. In this case, the parties both ac- 
cuse other of lying and slander; and failing before the "ses- 
sion,' to settle it, they gravely marched up to presbytery: 
the presbytery appointed a committee of ministers to settle 
It, and they failed; and finally, they are about going to law ' 
However, this may all have been decreed, and if so, it is all 
right! Still, the constitution of their church, mak-es nooro- 
vision for a esse of this kind. ^ 

One word more on the subject of choosing ministers. 
Aniong the Presbyterians, although the ^'people^^ have a - 
right to call out for such minister as they shall choose, the 



164 HELPS TO THE STUDT 

call must be presented through the presbytery of which the 
minister in question is a member, and it remains optional 
with the presbytery to accede to the call or not; nor will the 
presbytery accede to the call, unless, by the way, it is accom- 
panied with an assurance, that the minister shall have some 
several hundred dollars for his labors i 

Here comes the proof: ^'And no minister or candidate shaU 
receive a call but through the hands of the presbytery." Con- 
stitution, p. 376. 

In the Methodist church, though the appointment of the 
preachers to their several circuits is with the bishop and pre- 
siding elders in council, yet the people have the right of peti- 
tioning for whatever preacher they please, and their petitions 
always meet with a respectful consideration. Hence,, the 
choice of the people on this plan of procedure, is as likely to 
prevail, as on that pursued by the Presbyterians. In this res- 
pect the Methodists have the advantage. And if it so come 
to pass that they get a preacher they are not pleased with, 
they have the consolation to know that one year, will end 
their connexion with him. 

Not so with the Presbyterians: they must grin and bear it, 
as the vulgar saying is. Look at their condition in Dandridge, 
in Knoxville, in little Newport, at West-Minster, and at va- 
rious other places too tedious to mention. But I proceed. 

^'85. Has not Episcopacy heretofore been unfavorable to 
civil liberty? 

t^ns. The mih^e and the crown have a strong affinity for 
each other. Dr. Clarke says, as Ihe state has its king so the 
church should have its bishop. 

86. Has not Presbyterianism always promoted civil 
liberty? 

tdns. It is REPUBLICANISM, and must necessarily produce 
a strong preference for that form of civil government." 

The above paragraph ends my quotations from the Cate- 
chism. I could scarcely repel the temptation to laugh when 
I first read the above. Episcopacy unfavorable to civil liber- 
ty ! Presbyterianism favorable to civil liberty ! Indeed ! We 
shall soon see how this note will chime in with the others. 
Who, I ask, — and I ask it with a pity for the wTiter who has 
put this rod into my hands, — until quite recently possessed 
all power, civil and religious, in New-England? Who, pre- 
vious to the political struggle and revolution, which took 
place in the state of Connecticut in 1816, arrested and fined 
a Methodist preacher for marrying members of his own con- 
gregation? Who caused the poor man's cow to be sold to 



or PBESBYTKRIANISM. 165 

pay tax to the priest! Who assessed the inhabitants of each 
town to build churches and pay minister's salaries? Who 
hanged the Quakers, whipped and branded the Baptists, per- 
secuted and fined the Methodists in New-England, for a dif-> 
ference in religious belief? I answer, the Repiiblican Pres^ 
byterians! God save us from such republicanism ! 

I think the Presbyterians are the last people above ground 
who should touch this delicate subject. It was republican 
Presbyterianism, which, in Holland, was propagated by the 
sword ! Republican Presbyterianism, in the hands of his Ho- 
liness, John Calvin, led him to murder a pious and an innocent 
man for a difference in religious beliefl It is of no use to 
say Presbyterians do not act so now. I know they do not. 
And I know why they do not. They cannot — dare not. 
The law will not allow them. They have the disposition 
yet. All that keeps them down is fear. 

Neither Constantine the great, or the Pope of Rome, were 
ever more anxious to unite church and state, than are the 
leading characters in the Presbyterian church in the United 
States. Should they ever succeed, the horrible scenes trans- 
acted by their predecessors in Europe, and in the north of 
Germany, will be the quintescence of peace, compared with, 
what we shall see in this country. From such republicanism,, 
may our good Lord deliver us ! 

One word more. Among all the low, scurrilous, bitter, 
and acrimonious publications constantly teeming from \^hQ 
press: infidel and semi-infidel works; of licentious novels; 
and of the whole tribe of catch-penny writers, and pamph- 
leteerSj \ have never seen any which abounds with more false 
statements and insinuations, than this Catechism. I can but 
exclaim, while contemplating s,uch weakness, * '-Lord,, what is^. 



wm 



I6S toELPS TO T«E STtJBY 

If we turlfi our attention to Geneva, the theatre of John 
Calvin's glory, we shall find but little to cheer us amidst the 
general gloom which spread itself over Protestant Europe* 
If we look to Scotland, where the intriepid and pious Knoxj 
tlisplayed the banner of the cross, we shall not find a great 
d^al to cheer us. If w^e go to England, the land of our an* 
cestors, for a century and a half past, we will m«^et with but 
little encouragement. The cause of this is, that in each and 
all of those places, the clergy were aided and strengthened by 
the strong arm of civil power and protection. 

And if we turn our attention to beloved America, we will 
find, that at the memorable era of her political independence, 
when almost every state had its laws for the support of its 
favorite theory of Christianity, her condition was but little 
better. 

The following extracts are taken from a political sermon, 
preached by the Rev. David Osgood, D. D., pastor of the 
church atMedford: — "The strong prepossessions of so great 
a proportion of my fellow-citizens in favor of a race of de- 
mons (the American people) and against a nation of more 
religion, virtue, good faith, generosity, and beneficence, 
(Great Britain) than any that now is, or ever has been upon 
the face of the earth, wring my soul with anguish, and fill 
my heart with apprehensions and terror of the judgment of 
heaven upon this sinful people.^' 

<^If at the command of weak or wicked rulers^ they under- 
take an unjust war, each man who volunteers his services in 
such a cause, or loans his money for its support, or by his con- 
versation, his wjitings, or any other mode of influence, en- 
courages its prosecution, that man is an accomplice in the 
wickedness, loads his conscience with the blackest crimes, — 
brings the guilt of blood upon his soul, and — in the sight of 
God and his iaiv is a 7Jiurderer.^' 

<^My mind has been in a constant agony, not so much at 
the invisible foes of our temporal prosperity and happiness, 
and the complicated miseries of war, as at its guilt, its out- 
rage against heaven, against all truth, honesty, justice, good- 
ness — against all the principles of social happiness.'^ Dis- 
course delivered June 27, 1812, pages 9& 12. 

The following extracts are from a political sermon, preached 
by the Rev. Elijah Parish, D. D., at By field:— "The Israelites 
became weary of yielding the fruits of their labor to pamper 
their splendid tyrants. They left their political woes. 7'Aey 
separated/ Where is our Moses!! Where is the rod of 



OF PRESB YTERIANISM. 169 

HIS miracles!!! Where is our Aaron!!!! Alas! no voice 
from the burning bush has directed them here.'' 

^'New-England, if invaded, would be obliged to defend 
herself. Do you not then owe it to your children, and owe 
It to your God, to make peace for yourselves. You may as 
well expect the cataract of Niagara to turn its current to the 
head of Superior, as a wicked congress to make a pause in the 
work of destroying their country, while the people will fur- 
nish the means.'' 

^'Should the English now be at liberty to send all their 
armies and all their ships to America, and in one day burn 
every city from Maine to Georgia, your condescendino- rulers 
would play on their harps, while they gazed at the t'r-emen- 
dous confldgration. Tyrants are the same on the banks of 
the Nile and the Potomac— at Memphis and at Washino-ton— 
in a monarchy and a republic." 

^^Like the worshippers of Moloch, the supporters of a rzY^ 
administration sacrafice their children on the altar of demo- 
cracy. Like the widows of Hindostan, they consume them- 
selves. Like the frantic votaries of Juggernaut, they throw 
themselves under the car of their political idol. They are 
crushed by its wheels." 

^_ ^^To raise army after army to be sacrificed, when the Ena;- 
iish do all which is possible, to soften the rigors of captivitv, 
by kindness to the prisoners which they have taken by thou- 
sands and thousands, restoring them to their families without 
a ransom, and without their request; is it not the lawless 
attacks of Goths and Vandals, to carrv on such a war after its 
only avowed cause has been removed, the daring pillao-e of 
wild Arabs, a vile outrage on all the principles of Christianity 
an impious abandonment of divine protection. " ' 

"The legislators vjho yielded to this war, when assailed 
by the manifesto of their angry chief, established iniquity 
and murder by law.'^^ 

"Our government, if they may be called the governmenl, 
and not the destroyers of the countrv, bear all these things as 
patiently as a colony of convicts sail into Botany Bay ! I !" 
J ^Those western states which have been violent for this 
abominable war oi murder— those states which have thirsted 
for blood, God has given them blood to drink. Their lamen- 
utions are deep and loud." Discourse delivered April 7, 
1814. ^ 

Of all the abominations that ever disgraced any country, I 
know of nothing more deserving of reprobation than the 
prostitution of the sacred desk for political purposes. It is 
P 



468 JIELPS TO TttE STtJBlf 

If we turft our attention to Geneva, the theatJ-e of John 
Calvin's ""lory, we shall find but little to cheer us amidst the 
general gloom which spread itself over Protestant Europe* 
If we look to Scotland, where the intriepid and pious Knox, 
displayed the banner of the cross, we shall not find a great 
d^al to cheer us. If we go to England, the land of our an* 
cestors, for a century and a half past, we will meet with but 
little encouragement. The cause of this is, that in each and 
all of those places, the clergy were aided and strengthened by 
the strong arm of civil power and protection. 

And if we turn our attention to beloved America, we will 
find, that at the memorable era of her political independence, 
when almost every state had its laws for the support of its 
favorite theory of Christianity, her condition was but little 
better. 

The following extracts are taken from a political sermon, 
preached by the Rev. David Osgood, D. D., pastor of the 
church atMedford: — "The strong prepossessions of so great 
a proportion of my fellow-citizens in favor of a race of de- 
mons (the American people) and against a nation of more 
religion, virtue, good faith, generosity, and beneficence, 
(Great Britain) than any that now is, or ever has been upon 
the face of the earth, wring my soul with anguish, and fill 
my heart with apprehensions and terror of the judgment of 
heaven upon this sinful people." 

<^If at the command of weak or wicked rulers, they under- 
take an unjust war, each man who volunteers his services in 
such a cause, or loans his money for its support, or by his con- 
versation, liis waitings, or any other mode of influence, en- 
courao-es its prosecution, that man is an accomplice in the 
wickedness, loads his conscience with the blackest crimes, — 
brings the guilt of blood upon his soul, and — in the sight of 
God and his la w is a 7Jiurdtrer. ^ ' 

<<My mind has been in a constant agony, not so much at 
the invisible foes of owr temporal prosperity and happiness, 
and the complicated miseries of war, as at its guilt, its out- 
rage against heaven, against all truth, honesty, justice, good- 
ness— against all the principles of social happiness.'' Dis- 
course delivered June 27, 1612, pages 9 & 12. 

The following extracts are from a political sermon, preached 
by the Rev. Elijah Parish, D. D., at Byfield:-- "The Israelites 
became weary of yielding the fruits of their labor to pamper 
their splendid tyrants. They left their political woes. They 
separatedt Where is our Moses I! Where is the rod of 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 169 

HIS miracles!!! Where is our Aaron!!!! Alas! no voice 
from the burning bush has directed them here.'' 

«'Nevv-England, if invaded, would be obliged to defend 
herself. Do you not then owe it to 5^our children, and owe 
it to your God, to make peace for yourselves. You may as 
well expect the cataract of Niagara to turn its current to the 
head of Superior, as a wicked congress to make a pause in the 
work of destroying their country, while the people will fur- 
nish the means." 

"Should the English now be at liberty to send all their 
armies and all their ships to America, and in one day burn 
every city from Maine to Georgia, your condescending rulers 
would play on their harps, while they gazed at the tremen- 
dous confldgration. T3^rants are the same on the banks of 

the Nile and the Potomac — at Memphis and at Washington 

in a monarchy and a republic .'^ 

'^Like the worshippers of Moloch, the supportersof a I'zYe 
administration sacrafice their children on the altar of demo- 
cracy. Like the widows of Hindostan, they consume them- 
selves. Like the frantic votaries of Juggernaut, they throw 
themselves under the car of their political idol. They are 
crushed by its wheels.'^ 

^^To raise army after army to be sacrificed, when the Eng- 
lish do all which is possible, to soften the rigors of captivity, 
by kindness to the prisoners which they have taken by thou- 
sands and thousands, restoring them to their families without 
a ransom, and without their request; is it not the lawless 
attacks of Goths and Vandals, to carry on such a war after its 
only avowed cause has been removed, the daring pillao-e of 
wild Arabs, a vile outrage on all the principles of Christianity, 
an impious abandonment of divine protection." 

<*The legislators who yielded to this war, when assailed 
by the manifesto of their angry chief, established iniquity 
and murder by law.^^ 

"Our government, if they may be called the government, 
and not the destroyers of the country, bear all these things as 
patiently as a colony of convicts saifinto Botany Bay ! ! !" 
^ 'Those western states which have been violent for this 
abominable war oi murder — those states which have thirsted 
for blood, God has given them blood to drink. Their lamen- 
Utions are deep and loud." Discourse delivered April 7, 
1814. 

Of all the abominations that ever disgraced any country, I 
know of nothing more deserving of reprobation than the 
prostitution of the sacred desk for political purposes. It is 
P 



170 HEIiPS TO THE STUDY 

next to impossible to aggravate the hideousness of this sin. 
And yet, during, before, and after the war of 1812, this was 
a common practice among the Calvinistic clergy of New- 
England. And what is more humiliating than all, they were 
violently opposed to the war; while they were the avowed 
friends and advocates of Great Britain ! 

The above will serve as specimens of the matter and man- 
ner of their inglorious sermons. 

Had the middle and western states acted the part of New- 
England, president Madison would have been in a deplorable 
condition, when, at the suggestion of congress, he proclaimed 
war. I shall just say, if these preachers believed all they 
asserted, what transcendent infatuation! If they did not, 
what superlatively transcendent turpitude ! In both or either 
of these cases, may I not exclaim, what transcendent profana- 
tion of the clerical functions — and of a religion which enjoins 
upon us, subjection to the powers that be! May kind 
heaven, of his infinite mercy, grant that no American wor- 
shipping assembly, may again ever be so cursed, as to hear 
two more such sermons! 

One of these reverend gentlemen is a Presbyterian, and 
the other is a Congregationalist. But, it is a truth generally 
known, that the Presbyterians were once, in a generic term, 
classed with the Puritans; and it is also true that the Con- 
gregational ists, Independents, Presbyterians, and Puritans, as 
a body, were, and now are, in their fundamental doctrines, 
policy and leading designs, one people. For further particu- 
lars, I refer the reader to Neal's History of the Puritans. 



CHAPTER II. 

ADDRESS OF THE '^CHARITABLE SOCIETY" OF NEW-ENGLAND, 

This address was written by a committee of ministers, 
styled the ^'committee of supplies," of which Rev. Lyman 
Beecher of Litchfield, was chairman, and without a doubt, he 
wasthe sole writer of it. This committee of supplies, in 1814, 
consisted of four reverend gentlemen, and one grave esquire, 
making in all five. On two other committees pertaining to 
this society, viz. the "committee of appropriations," and 
the "associational committee," there are sixteen more clergy- 
men ; whose business it is to co-operate with Yale and Ando- 



or PRESBYTERIAjriSM. 171 

rer colleges, <<to assist in providing for our country a sufficient 
number of competent religious instructors." 

This, however, is only the professed object they have in 
view; while in reality, from the sentiments advanced in the 
address, and intended to be carried into operation, they aim 
at totally destroying our religious and civil liberties, by bring- 
ing about a union of church and state. 

That a proper education is essential for the ministry, is 
allowed; for nothing can be more absurd than for a man to 
undertake to teach a science he is not acquainted with. It is 
therefore essential, that in order for a man rightly to teach 
the gospel, he should first undei stand it. But this knowledge I 
apprehend may be acquired without going to Yale or Ando- 
ver. Indeed a pious man with talents, may be educated for 
the ministry, without going to any college, or com.ing under 
the care of any particular society. Besides, an essential de- 
gree, to be conferred on every student in divinity, is that of 
the ^^gift of the Holy Ghost ^^^ which degree is not usually 
conferred *^by the laying on of the hands" of the president 
of a literary institution! But what service can we render to 
the community at large, by our charity in educating young 
men to preach up Calvinism} For, as the poet saith, — 

*<If all things succeed as already decreed. 

And immutable impulses rule us, 
Then to preach and to pray is time thrown away. 

And our teachers do nothing- but fool us. 
But if by free will, we may go or stand still. 

As best £uit3 each present occasion, 
Then fill »y> the g-lass, and call him an ass 

That preaches up predestination" 

Biii the principles of this address, to which I would call 
tirtJ reader's particular attention, are contained in the follow- 
ing extracts: — 

<*There is a state of society to be formed, and to be formed 
by an extensive combination of institutions, religious, civil, 
and literary, which never exists without the co-operation of 
an educated ministry ! !" 

^<Illiterate men have never been the chosen instruments of 
Ood to build up his cause. Illiterate men however nous, 
cannot command the attention of that class of the Community 
%vhose education and mental culture is above their own." 

^^Now the CIVIL welfare of the nation, and the interests of 
eternity, alike demand the agency of qualified religious in- 
gtructorsr'' 



172 HELFS TO THE STUDT 

<'To produce such a combination and such efforts, the 
WRETCHED state of our country must be known. The infor- 
mation contained in this address may with propriety, it is 
believed, be communicated on the SABBATH to ALL our 
worshipping assemblies; and the investigation commenced in 
it with propriety be continued, until a regular and minute 
account can be given of the religious state of our land! The 
newspaper, the tract, and magazine, must disclose to our 
slumbering countrymen their danger. The press must 
GROAN in the communication of our wretchedness; and from 
ever)^ pulpit in the land the trumpet must sound long and 
loud; the nation must be awaked to save itself by its owk 
exertions, or we are undone. In so glorious a work, we 
call on the pastors and the churches for their co-operation. 
Nor do we anticipate that the call w^ill be unwelcome or un- 
heeded. If ministers do not feel in such a cause, and the 
churches redeemed by their instrumentality, we should despair 
of exciting sympathy or obtaining help. It is our expecta- 
tion that every church in the state will enlist as an auxiliary 
to this society." 

(j3^ ^'OuR nation is more deplorably destitute of 
religious instruction than any other christian nation 

UNDER heaven.'^ ^J^ 

It certainly requires no great effort of the uaderstan dingy 
to perceive the ultimate object of the charitable society. VVe 
are not to understand that a society was to be formed. No, 
no; there is a difference between a society and the state of 
that society. 

It is a well known fact, that at the time this society was- 
formed, the Congregational religion and the civil goverament 
of Connecticut, were blended together by a statute law, aqd 
that there never was such a compact in any of the states in the 
Union, but the New-England states. Therefore to effect a 
union of church and state throughout the United States, was 
the sole design of the charitable society. Then should we 
see those church and state laws executed as rigorously as 
formerly, and laying aside all rules of toleration, we should 
hear of those Puritanical saints hanging poor unoffending 
Quakers at Boston; of Methodist ministers being fined for 
marrying members of their own church; and of the Baptists 
being whipped at the tail of a cart, or imprisoned for preach- 
ing what they conscientiously believed. 



or PRESBYTERIAXISM. 173 

To conclude, I refer the reader, for further information on 
this subject, to the history of New-England. 

**Ye long" heads, and strong" heads, attend to my strains — 
Ye clear heads, and queer lieads, and heads with few brains. 
Ye thick sculls, and quick sculls, and heads great and sn>all, 
And ye heads that aspire to be heads over all.** 



CHAPTER III. 



EFFECTS OF THE LAWS OF CONNECTICUT. 

Having, through the course of this work, repeatedly os~ 
verted that the church and state laws of the New-England 
states, in former times, operated to the great disadvantage of 
both the ministers and members of other denominations, it 
may not be amiss, just here, to adduce some stronger proof of 
the triith of my assertions, than simply my ipse dixit. And 
having seen the frame of these laws, let us for a moment 
look at its motions, and see how it works. The followins; 
extract from the Connecticut Mirror, of 1820, a paper printed 
in the country where those horrible scenes were acted out, 
to which I have so repeatedly alluded, and where those de- 
cisions were made, of which other denominations have so 
justly complained. 

*^TOWN OF GOSHEN VS. TOWN OF STONINGTON." 

<'This case came to trial at the late term of the superior court? 
at Litchfield, held by Chief Justice Hosmer. It was an ac- 
tion of assumpsit, for the support of a female pauper. The 
plaintiff claimed that her settlement was in the town of Ston- 
ington, which was the principle question on the trial. The 
reputed husband was admitted to be an inhabitant of Stoning- 
tin, but the defendant denied the legality of her marriage* 
It appeared that the nuptials were solemnized by the Rev. 
Mr. Christie, in the town of Cornwall, in Litchfield county. 
It was proven by the plaintiffs, that the Rev. Mr. Christie, 
was a clergyman of the Methodist church, a regularly or^ 
dained minister of the gospel, a located minister within 
certain limits, embracing the northern part of Litchfield coun- 
ty, and a small part of the county of Hartford, and that he 
dwelt in the town of Cornwall. On hearing counsel, the 
Chief Justice decided that by law he was not a settled 
MINISTER, — had no right to solemnize marriage, and, that 
this marriage was utter! v void to all intents and purposes! 
p2 



I75u HE IPS TO THE STUDY 

The jury, therefore, returned a verdict for the defendants pur- 
suant to the direction of the Judge." 

According to the law, and the decision of his honor in this 
f.ase, the marriage compact, so far as Methodists, and others 
married by Methodist ministers are concerned, throug;hout 
the state of Connecticut, is literally torn to pieces. From 
this decision, it evidently appears, that not only this couple, 
but likewise all who have been joined together in like man- 
ner, have, from the time of their marriage till now, lived in 
adultery; and unless they are married over again, by a ^'set- 
tled minister," they will die adulterers. Now, the sin of 
adultery, in Scripture, is threatened with the damnation of 
hell; so that, those persons in Connecticut, who have been 
ioined together by Methodist ministers, and really wish to 
escape the torments of hell, had better get '^a settled minister*' 
to marry them over again ! 

But let us have a further view of the situation of other de- 
nominations, under the unequal and unjust operation of the 
laws of those times. This knowledge is afforded us by a 
book published in Boston, in 1818, in the face of the facts it 
rscords, entitled *^A blow at the root of aristocracy, or an 
iippeal to matters of ftict in support of religious freedom.-' 
Hear it! And again, I say hear it! ! ! 

"it is a fact, that in the town of Natick, there are a number 
of church members of a denomination different in their creed, 
from the majority of the town. These regularly attend a sta- 
ted ministry at a meeting house of their own, standing near 
the line of Weston and Needham. They gave in their cer- 
tificates according to the law of March, 1800, and after pay- 
ing their viinisterial tax went with their minister and made 
R legal demand of the same, as specified in that law, but were 
refused! They were, therefore, under the necessity of rais- 
ing other money towards the support of their own minister; 
while a man they did not hear, nor even wish to hear, was fed 
and clothed with money, for which their own minister and 
his farmer suffered." 

Second case. *'In Wilbraham, three church members 
were taken by the civil officer, put in a wagon and carried to 
Springfield jail, for the non payment of the ministerial tax 
in that town; and one of them who is a respectable farmer, 
and a member of the house of representatives, has since ex- 
pended near five bunded dollars, by paying the costs of vex- 
atious law-suits, which their oppression occasioned him." 

Third case. <'The following extract of a letter, from an 
aged and venerable minister of the Baptist denomination, to 



OF PRESB YTERIANISM. 175 

one pf his brethren in Boston, will add to these melancholy 
facts. ^I had ten acres of my home lot sold at vendue for 
that purpose, i. e., for ministerial taxes, and the buyer 
came with a band of men to take possession of it; and my 
children crying round me, and saying, is the man come to 
take away our land?" 

Fourth case. ''A gentleman on Martha's vineyard, who, 
for a number of years, had been a respectable member of the 
legislature, and at that time a judge of the county court, was 
carried to prison for refusing to pay a rainisterial tax^ though 
he was a church member of a different denomination." 

Fifth case. ^^On the Cape^ a farmer had his rye attached 
and sold, when reaped down in the field; but as it did not pay 
the ministerial tax, they took and sold a stack of English 
hay, containing about two tons, and were so religiously hon- 
est as to return about seventy-Jive cents of overplus mo- 
ney!" 

Besides the above cases, more than fifty, if not more than 
a hundred cases, of the like nature, and with much the same 
circumstances, within the limits of the Commonwealth of 
Massachusetts and Connecticut, and within fifteen or twenty 
years have occurred, in which property has been exposed to 
public sale, some imprisoned, vexatious law-suits commenced 
and carried on with bitterness and rigor; feuds and strifes cre- 
ated and strengthened; and a multitude of evils produced, un- 
der a pretended zeal for the support of the gospel. 

But even here at home, in our beloved Tennessee, we have 
evidently seen a disposition on the part of the Presbyterian 
ministry, to tyranize over other denominations, and to con- 
nect their religion and religious institutions with the civil 
affairs of our country. In the year 1820, a controversy of 
some length, and of considerable importance, was carried on 
through the columns of the Knoxville Register on this sub- 
ject, by the Rev. Isaac Anderson, of the Presbyterian 
church, on the one part, and the Rev. James Dixon, of the 
Methodist Episcopal church, on the other. Doctor Ander- 
son wrote over the signature of "Amicus Literarum," and 
Mr. Dixon over the signature of "Republican." And al- 
though Dr. A. has lived long and fought "a many a battle 
sore,'^ yet, he never was so completely ii^ed up in all the 
days of his life, as he was on this occasion: •Amicus, in his 
fourth number, gravely asks this question : "Can civil govern- 
ments be so constructed and administered, that they will 
never participate of the spirit and for3C of the government 
of the church that may be predominant?" This question he 



17C HELPS TO THE STUDY 

answers in the negative: — *<lt is impossible, a government 
cannot be organized, and then be administered by an unthink- 
ing machine. It must be administered by men, and men 
must act according to their rdews and sentiments; and the 
government must finally take the form of which the senti- 
ments of the men administering it are the archetype." 

A part of Mr. Dixon's reply to the above, is in the follow- 
ing words: ^'The word predominant, signifies ^prevalent su- 
preme in influence, ascendant,' — and this prevalence, supreme 
influence, and ascendanc}^, respects the other churches which 
may exist in the same country; therefore according to Mr. 
A's sentiments, when ever one churcli obtains the ascendancy 
over the rest in any country, it of necessity begins to com- 
municate the spirit and form of its government to the civil 
government of the land." 

The correctness of Mr. Dixon's conclusion appears from 
the face ot a petition, presented to the legislature of Tennes- 
see, in 1819, praying for an act of incorporation, for the 
Southern and Western Theological Seminar}^, in which the 
petitioners say, that ^'many men of piety, wealth, and in- 
fluence in the Carolinas, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Lou- 
isiana, Missouri, and perhaps Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, 
and part of Virginia, would co-operate with us.'' 

Once more: These petitioners ask the liberty of extending 
their incorporation over the above mentioned extent of coun- 
try, in the following word«, viz: ''Your petitioners humbly 
pray your honorable body to incorporate the synod of Ten- 
nessee^ with such other synods and presbyteries as may 
choose to join the synod of Tennessee, to hold property for 
the benefit of the seminary." 

In addition to the above, I have two other cases to mention. , 
First, I now have in my possession the copy of a petition 
from Blount county; presented to the legislature of Tennes- 
see, in the year 1817, in which an act of incorporation for the 
Baker's creek church, is asked for. 

Secondly, at the session of the Legislature of Tennessee, 
in 1829, an attempt was made to incorporate the Presbyterian 
church in the city of Nashville. I add no more, but leav^ 
the reader to dispose of the foregoing as he may think proper. 



OF PRESBYTBEIAIf ISM. 177 



CHAPTER IV. 

EXTRACTS FROM A DISCOURSE, DELIVERED ON THE FOURTH 
OF JULY, 1827, IN THE SEVENTH PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH 
IN PHILADELPHIA, ENTITLED '^THE DUTY OF CHRISTIAN 
FREEMEN TO ELECT CHRISTIAN RULERS. " BY EZRA STILES 
ELY, D. D. PASTOR OF THE THIRD PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH 
IN THAT CITY. 
! 

I In regard to the charge brought against the PresbyterianSy. 
I viz., of their making efforts to establish themselves by law, 
\ it is well known to have been a favorite object among them, 
i for some time, especially in New-England. The efforts that 
w-ere made by them, soon after the elevation of old John 
Adams to the presidency of the United States, is yet fresh 
in the memory of many of the American people, as well as 
the chagrin that was manifested on finding themselves disap- 
pointed. And whoever reads the following extracts from 
Dr. Ely's political sermon, (which sermon was to inform the 
ministers and elders then present hov^^ to act) and considers 
the time of its delivery, cannot fail to see the same end con- 
templated. This clergyman, of such political notoriety, in 
^addition to having been moderator of the general assembly, 
^as for years been the stated clerk^ for the whole Presbyterian 
church in America; and may therefore be regarded as high 
Authority — as speaking the sentiments of his brethren gen- 
erally. 

I now have before me the latest edition of this sermon. 
Published by Dr. Ely himself, in November, 1831. After 
Inaking a few preliminary remarks, the Doctor breaks forth 
jn the following eloquent strain: — 

We have assembled, fellow-citizens, on the anniversary of our na- 
Jon's birth day, in a katioxal a>'d religious manner, to celebrate our 
hdependence of all foreig-n domination, and the goodness of God in 
making- us a free people. On what subject can I, on the present occa- 
aon, insist with more propriety, than on the duty of all the rulers and 
:itizens of these United States in the exercise and enjoyment of all their 
(olitical rights, to honor the Lord Jesus Christ. Let it then be distinctly- 
rated and fearlessly maintained in ihe first place^ that evert member of 

■iitS CHRISTIAN XATIOJf, FR03I THE HIOHEST TO THE 10 WEST, OUgfhttOSCrve 

he Lord with fear, and yield his sincere homage to the Son of God. 
ivery ihtler should be an avowed and sincere friend of Christianity. He 
jiDuld liTKilo and believe the doctrines of our holy religion, and act in 

onformity with its precepts. 

This he ought to do? because as a man he is required to serve the Lord; 

id as a PUBLIC aetEtt he is called upon by divine authority, to *kiss the 



17S UKLFS TO THE STUDY 

Son.* The commandment contained in Proverbs iii, 6, Hn all thy wayg 
acknowledge hirrif* includes public as well as private ways, and political 
no less than domestic ways!" 

"Let all then admit, that our civil rulers ought to act a religious part in 
aJlthe relations they sustain." 

"If a ruler is not a christian he ought to be one in this land of evangeli- 
ca4 light, without delay^ and he ought, being a follower of Jesus, to hon- 
or him even as he honors the Father. In this land of religious freedom, 
what should hinder a civil magistrate from believing the gospel, and 
professing faith in Christ, any more than any other man? If the chief 
magistrate of a nation may be an irreligious man with impunity, who 
may not?" 

"Our rulers, like any ether members of the community, who are under 
law to God as rational beings, and under law to Christ, since they have 
the light of divine revelation, ought to search the Scriptures, assent to 
the truth, profess faith in Christ, keep the Sabbath holy to God, pray in 
private and in the domestic circle, a^/e«ff o?? the pubLc ministry of the 
word, be baptized, and celebrate the Lord's supper!!! None of our 
rulers have the consent of their Maker, that they should be Pagans,, So- 
cinians, Mussulmen, Deists, the opponents of cln-istiknity; and a religious 
people should never think of giving them permission, as public offiGei*s, 
to be and do, what they might not lawfully be and do, as private indi- 
viduals." 

ClJt" "/w other ivords, our presidents, secretaries of the government ^ sena- 
tors and oth^r representatives in congress, governors of states, judgesy state 
legislators, justices of the peace, and city magistrates, are just as much bound 
as any other persons in the United States, to be ouTisonox in THEin faith, 
mid virtuous and religious in their whole deportment ." ^TJi 

"Since it is the duty of all our rulers to serve the Lord and k.ss the Son 
of God, it must be most manifestly the duty of all oui christian fellow- 
citizens to honor the Lord Jesus Christ and promote cbr stianity by elect- 
ing and supporting as public officers the friends of oui blessed Saviour." 
"/n all thy ways acknowledge him, is a maxim which should dwell in a 
. christian's mind on the da^ of a public election as much as (in the Sabbath 
and which should govern him when conspiring with others to ho 
Christ, either at the Lord's table, or in the election of chief magistrate. 

"If the wise, the prudent, the temperate, the friends of God and of 
their country, do not endeavor to control our elections, they will be eon^ 
trolled by others; and if on; good man may without any reasonable excu: 
absent himself, then all may." 

"If all the truly religious men of our nation would be punctual an 
persevering in their endeavors to have good men chosen to fill all our n 
tional and state offices of honor, power and trust, thetu wk.igut woul 
soon be felt by politicians; and those who care little for the rehgion of tl 
Bible, would, for their own interest, consult the reasonable wishes of th 
great mass of christians throughout our land." 

"I could wish to see every professing christian in attendance on ele 
tions; but rather let him never give a vote, than receive a treat for h 
suffrage. (Ij- 1 PROPOSE, FELLOW-CITIZENS, A NEW SORT O 
UNION, OR, IF YOU PLEASE. A CHRISTIAN PARTY IN POLITIC^ 
WHICH I AM EXCEEDINGLY DESIROUS ALL GOOD MEN IN^Ul 
COUNTRY SHOULD JOIN." Jp} 

"All who profess to be christians of any denomination ou^fji ^^ ^S^H 
that they will support no man as a candidate for any office, who is not pyqfcj 
fessedly friendly to Christianity, and a believer in divine j-evel'^tiiQil.'*' 



athji 



OF PRESBY'i. ^ANISM, ^.yg 

Q--. ..THE PRESBYTERIANS ALONE COULD BRING HALF 4 
MILLION OF ELECTORS INTO THE FIELD." ^ 

*'Let a man be of good moral character, and let him profess to believe 
in and advocate the christian religion, and we can all support him!!! 
At one time he will be a Baptist, at another an Episcopalian, at another 
a Methodist, at another a Presbyterian of the American, Scotch, Irish 
Dutch, or German stamp, and always a friend to our common chvisV 
tianity." \ \ 

"I am free to avow, that other tilings being equal, I would prefer for ' 
my chief magistrate, and judge, and ruler, A SOUND PRESBYTERIAN- 
and every candid religionist will make the same declaration conc^ning 
his own persuasion.'* \ 

The above closes my extracts from the sermon, and they 
will show for themselves. However, I will add, that Doctor 
Ely, in 1828, speaking '•^of the past and present condition 
of the Presbyterian church, with her prospects and wants^ " 
boastingly held forth the following language: — 

<an 1704, or 124 years ago, the Presbyterian church in the 
United States, was organized by the establishment of the 
Presbytery of Philadelphia. In 1716, or 112 years ago, we 
had one synod, and four Presbyteries.^' Then contrasting 
the past with the then present state of the Presbyterian 
church, the Doctor says: — Two thirds of all the colleges, 
theological seminaries, and other academic institutions in the 
country, are under the instruction and control of Presby- 
terians. The Congregational churches of New-Englandj 
and the Presbyterian church together, have the charge of 
more than three fourths of all these fountains of literary 
influence." 

That I am by no means singular in supposing efforts are 
used to effect a religious establishment, on the part of the 
Presbyterians, and that they are the most intolerant of all sects, 
may be seen by the following energetic remarks from the pen 
of Thomas Jefferson, which I extract from the IV vol. of 
his late works, now lying before me. He says: 

"The Presbyterian clergy are the loudest; the most in- 
tolerant of all sects; the most tyrannical and ambitious; 
ready at the word of the lawgiver, if such a word could now 
be obtained, to put the torch to the pile, and to re-kindle, in 
this virgin hemisphere, the flames, in which their oracle, 
Calvin, consumed the poor Servetus. They pant to re- 
establish BY LAW, that holy inquisition which they can now 
only infuse into public opinion." 

^ In a letter to Doctor Cooper, bearing date November 2, 
1822, he says: **Your favor of October 18th, came to hand 
yesterday. The atmosphere of this country is unquestionably 



/ 



iSO HELPSilr'^ .STUDY 

charged with a threatr-'in^ ^ X\d of fanaticism, lighter in 
some parts, denser -^ others, but too heavy in all. I had no 
idea, however, t/^t in Pennsylvania, the cradle of toleration 
and freedom of religion, it could have arisen to the height 
yoli describe. This must be owing to the growth of Freshy- 
terianisin. The blasphemy and absurdity of the five poinl.s 
/of Calvin, and the impossibility of defending them, render 
^'their advocates impatient of reasoning, irritable, and prone 
^ to denunciation." ^'In our village of Charlottesville, there 
is a good degree of religion, with a small spice only of fanati- 
cism. We have four sects, but without either church or meet- 
ino- house. The court house is the common temple, one 
Sunday in the month to each. Here Episcopalian and Pres- 
byterian, Methodist and Baptist, meet together, join in 
hymning their Maker, listen with attention and devotion to 
each others' preachers, and all mix in society with perfect har- 
mony. It is not so in the districts where Presbyterianism 
prevails undividedly. (f^ Their ambition and tyranny 

WOULD TOLERATE NO RIVAL IF THEY HAD POWER. ,J^j Sys- 
tematic in grasping at an ascendancy over ail other sects, they 
aim, like the Jesuits, at engrossing the education of the coun- 
try, are hostile to every institution which they do not direct, 
and jealous at seeing others begin to attend at all to that 
object." 

Mr. Jefferson, in a letter to old John Adams, dated Octo- 
ber 28, 1813, remarks as follows: <'It is probable that our 
difference of opinion may, in some measure, be produced by 
a difference of character in those among whom we live. From 
what I have seen of Massachusetts and Connecticut myself, 
and still more from what I have heard, and the character given 
of the former by yourself, who know them so 7rmch better, 
there seems to be in those two states, a traditionary reverence 
for certain families, which has rendered the offices of the 
government nearly hereditary in those families. I presume 
that from an early period of your history, members of those 
families, happening to possess virtue and talents, have hon- 
estly exercised them for the good of the people, and by their 
services have endeared their names to them. 

In coupling Connecticut with you, I mean it politically 
only, not morally. For having made the Bible the common 
law of their land, they seem to have modelled their morality 
on the story of Jacob and Laban ! But although this heredi- 
tary succession to office with you, may, in some degree, be 
founded in real family merit, it has proceeded from your 



OV PRESBYTERIANISM. 181 

In another letter to the same man, dated May 5, 1817, on 
the subject of the political reformation which had taken place 
in Connecticut, Mr. Jefferson says: <<For what need we 
despair of after the resurrection of Connecticut to light and 
liberty. I had believed that the last retreat of monkish dark- 
ness, bigotry, and abhorrence of those advances of the mind 
which had carried the other states a century ahead of them. 
They seemed still to be exactly where their forefathers 
were when they schismatised from the covenant of works, 
?-nd to consider as dangerous heresies all innovations good or 
bad. I join you, therefore, in sincere congratulations that 
this den of the priesthood is at length broken up, and that a 
Protestant Popedom is no longer to disgrace the American 
history and charactei*.'' 

It will here be objected, that Mr. Jefferson was an infidel, 
or that he was opposed to all religion. I am free to avow, that 
he was not a member of any church, and that he wrote some 
things which savor very much of infidelit}'; but at the same 
time, hein^ no sectarian, and having no more partialities for 
one denomination than another, he was the better prepared to 
judge of their real merits. 

But, perhaps, an extract from judge Grundy^s speech, on 
the subject of the Protest of the President of the United 
States, delivered in the Senate, in 1834, will not be deemed 
irrelevant just here; and more especially, since this honorable 
senator is known to be entirely friendly to Christianity. Mr. 
Grundy says: ^'Before I can agree that our opponents shall 
have the exclusive possession of the title whigs, I wish, to 
make some further enquiries; where are those men who, dur- 
ing the last war, discouraged the enlistment of soldiers? 
Where are those who used their influence to prevent loans to 
the government in its utmost need? Where are all the moral 
traitors of that trying and gloomy period? Where are those 
who thought it hnmoral and irreligious, to rejoice at our 
victories, and mourned at the defeat of our enemy? Where 
are those who denounced James Madison as a tyrant, usurper, 
and despot, and proclaimed that the country would never 
prosper until he was sent to Elba? Where are the 'blue- 
light' gentry, who gave private signals to the enemy to ena- 
ble them to murder our citizens !^^ 

The above, then, is a specimen of New-England Presby- 
terianism. And this sect, when headed by Oliver Cromwell, 
so far gained the ascendancy in England, as to govern the state 
and oppress the Episcopalians. But when the latter regain- 
ed the ascendancy at the restoration of the monarchy, it was 
Q 



1$2 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

considered an impious encroachment on the liberty of con- 
science, and they, forsooth, came over to the wilderness of 
America! And this is the sect, which, in 1829, was the most 
active in trying to effect the stoppage of the mail on Sunday; 
which, if granted, they very well knew, would destroy one 
link of the CoilBtitutional chain; — which, when done, would 
enable them to do any thing. Is it not well known, that 
they crowded Congress with petitions for this purpose, till 
the house would scarcely hold any more? Now these pious 
.petitioners must have known, that the practical inconveni- 
ence which would result from such a measure, in the dimin- 
ished activity of the ordinary business of life, was, of itself, 
a sufficient reason why Congress should not grant their re- 
quest; — to say nothing at all of the advantages derived from 
receiving the religious news so much sooner. But, this aim 
at a suspension of the transportation of the mail, and the dis- 
tribution of letters on Sunday, though professedly made out 
of regard for the Lord's day, was, nevertheless, intended to 
aid in effecting a union of Church and State. In conclusion, 
a severe struggle is now going on in all parts of the United 
States, between despotism with its besotted supporters, ^and 
the friends of liberty. Dark and portentous clouds now dim 
our national horizon, and loud and angry muttering fortel the 
gathering tempest, which is to sweep away the fair fabric of 
Union, after having breasted so many storms. The Sunda}^ 
mail party, though they have been defeated, have had time to 
breathe, so as to repair their fallen courage, and to intrigue 
for their success in future. 

I would be the last to hold up any false views or fanatical 
sentiments, ahdknow that the sentiments here expressed are 
not such: — they are the words of truth and soberness. 



CHAPTER V. 



AMBITIOUS DESIGNS OF THE PRESBYTERIAN MINISTRY, OR, 

THE CASE TERMED * ^MURDER WILL OUT;" OR, AN AC-. 

COUNT OF THE GREAT PRESBYTERIAN PLOT, RELATIVE TO 
A "CENTRAL SOCIETY," IN 1828! 

The present state of things, throughout the known world, 
both conspires to agitate the human mind, and to render this 
an age of wonders. The struggle between truth and error 
— the noble achievements of the friends of Christ, and the 



0¥ rRESBYTERIAXISM. 183 

powerful opposition of his enemies, in all parts of the world, 
make this peculiarly an age of wonders. The war of opin- 
ion — the contention of sects — the rapid march of mind — the 
progress of truth, — and the great revivals of religion now in 
progress, all conspire to perplex the mind, and to excite en- 
quir}' among the people to know what these things mean, and 
what the final result will be. Truly this is an age of reform — 
of reform in every thing — emphatically of reform. DijQfer- 
ent denominations are reforming their creeds and confessions 
of faith. Almost all the governments of the world are re- 
forming, or have been recently reformed in their political ba- 
sis. But, bigotry, well knowingthat herall isnow at stake, is 
rolling together her clouds of blackness and darkness, with 
the forlorn hope of obscuring the glorious light of reform that 
is beaming in gladness upon the children of God! But all this 

will avail her nothing, if men will be true to themselves if 

they will not retrogade in the glorious cause — if they w^ill 
not continue to crouch under the yoke of bondage, which 
their spiritual guides — their ghostly conscience-keepers have 
laid upon them — we shall yet be delivered from the foulest 
abomination that ever blackened the historv of any country 
— an ecclesiastical heirarchy! 

I am no alarmist — I am no spiritual dreamer — what I now 
say is an awful reality. Look at the contents of this chapter! 
— see what coalitions and combinations have been entered in- 
to, for the purpose of establishing a national heirarchy, and 
then say is it ou'- duty to cry peace, peace, when there is no 
peace! Even the gun powder plot, in point of hellish malice, 
did not surpass this! The rack, the gibbet, and a second edi- 
tion of the infernal inquisition, is only one step behind this 
plot! 

The following articles, with some few strictures, are from, 
the Holston Messenger, published and edited by Rev. Mr. 
Stringfield; and by him, were collected from the several pa- 
pers credited, and so arranged as to set the whole transaction 
forth in its true light. Look at them ! Read them carefully ! ! 

^^Froni the Christian Advocate and Journal. 
MURDER WILL OUT. 

'Fear them not, therefore, for there is nothmg covered tasit shall not be 
revealed and hid that shall not be known. 

What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light, and what ye hear in 
the ear, that preach ye on the house tops.' — Jesus Christ. 

''Mr. Editor. — For some months it has been cautiously rumored in my 
region of country, that one or more travelling agents have been itinerating 
through the land, calling together the ministers of the gospel in every 
city and neighborhood, for the purpose of a secret conclave. It has been 



184 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

stated that sit these conclaves, a certain sechet of vast and paramount 
importance, has been entrusted to them under a solemn promise of se- 
crecy for a specified time. This is all we common people, the vulg-ar 
herd, or swinish multitude, could learn of this matter, and not a little 
curiosity has been awakened among- us; which until lately, was not grati- 
fied. 

But behold, a Morgan has been among- them, or mayhap a bird has 
flown, — already the secret is on the four winds of heaven, and as many of 
your readers may be anxious to learn the true reason of the midnight 
deeds of these modern missionaries, so novel in their character, t send 
you the stupendous and appalling account of the whole matter, which I 
Iiumbly conceive to be a conspiracy against tlie people's rights, which 
needs all the secrecy with which it has been enve]oj)ed; for when disclosed, 
it must be abhorred by every lover of civil and religious Iibert3% 

Be it known then that for some months, one or more agents, have been 
travelling tlirough the United States, calling meetings of the clergy in 
every place, and after obtaining a promise o^ secrecy, entrusting them witli 
the following' proposition, as nearly as can be communicated by my imper- 
fect though authentic information. 

1. Let a 'central society' be established, say at Boston, New-York, or 
Philadelphia, of a character both political and religious. The objects of 
tliis society are to raise a fund to be expended in printing books of all kinds, 
approved as orthodox, newspapers, &c. &c. 

2d. Let a ])ress be established in every city and county in the United 
States, avixiliary to, and dependant upon the central society. By these 
means a tremendous engine may be brought to bear upon the whole 
country,- for the books can be printed so cheap as to ruin all the book 
establishments in the nation, and the newspapers as well aS the ortho- 
dox books may 'be rendered so abundant as to force all others out of cir- 
culation.' 

3. The effect of tJiese multiplied presses, and the monopoly they would 
occasion in politics and religion, being devoted to botii subjects, are 
intended to establish and discipline a 'christian party in politics,' which 
in a few years would bring 'millions of electors into the field,* whose 
'characters are formed' by the universal dominion of this 'central so- 
ciety.' 

After submitting this sweeping proposition, the travelling agent modestly 
solicits pecuniary contributions from the reverend clergy assembled, to be 
employed in paying his travelling' expenses. This game has been played 
in the east, north, and west, and probably at this moment the south is 
marshalling under the same religious and political conspiracy. 

Now, Messrs. Editor's, I disclaim any other views in bringing this com- 
bination to light, than a desire to warn my fellow christians of their dan- 
ger, and caution them to be awake, least they be overwhelmed in the 
fearful vortex which these modern Jesuits are preparing in the erection 
of what they will call a salutary 'moral police.' I would rejoice in any 
additional measures to promote the cause of God, and subserve the glories 
of Emanuel's kingdom; and with all such eflTorts I most cheerfully unite 
heart and hand. But I conceive that this fearful negotiation, now in pro- 
gress, 'is carnal, sensual, and devilish.' It is an attempt to make chris- 
tians — but will only succeed in making hypocrites. It is a specious 
plausible union of professing christians against infidelity and vice; but it 
is no other than using 'carnal weapons,' instead of those which are 'mighty 
through God to the pulling down of the strong holds of Satan.' It is in 
effect serving God and mammon, an attempt to unite Christ and Belial, to 
identify the world and religion. 



OF PRESBYTJBRIANISM. 185 

Christians, like their Master, have a 'kingdom not of this world,' and 
can \iave no amalg-amation with carna), selfih, or worldly views of ag- 
grandizement, without suffering- in their piety, and overthrowing- the very 
corner Btone of our holy rehgion. 

The holy apostle would 'know nothing- among- men save Jesus Christ 
and him crucified,' because in this truth of God, there is an efficiency 
which must eventually triumph over error, and vice of every kind; for 
against 'this rock the gates of hell shall not prevail.' 

It is true, infidelity is making rapid strides in our country, and immor- 
ality abounds it would seem unabashed and uncontrolled; but 'why do 
the'heathen rage and the people imagine a vain thing?' Are we to con- 
clude lience, that true religion will not finally triumph? 'Oh ye of little 
faith, wherefore do ye doubt?' the 'testimony of the Lord is sure.' Let 
'the kings of the earth set themselv<?s, and the rulers take counsel to- 
gether, against the Lord and his anointed.' 'He that sitteth in the heavens' 
shall laugh, the Lord shall hold them in derision.' It is enough that wc 
as christians, 'grieved at the wickedness' of our modern Sodoms, meekly 
approach the throne of grace, and say, 'O Lord, incline thine ear, and 
hear; open thine eyes, and see how thine enemies triumph.' But let us 
never bring 'strange fire' to the altar of Jehovah, lest the 'fire go out 
from the Lord, and consume us,' as it did Nahab and Abihu, the two sons 
of Aaron, for their sacrilegious presumption. Touch not the ark of the 
Lord with unhallowed hands. Let us renounce our sectarian efforts at 
monopoly, and disclaim all 'national' or political combinations. Let it be 
our glory still to say, 'As for us, we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a 
stumbling block, to the Greeks foolishness; but to them that believe, 
Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.' 

A LATiMAJT." 

"How the author of the above communication came to the knowledge 
of the secret combination on which lie has animadverted so freely and 
justly, we cannot tell. That a plan similar to the above is in operation, 
we beheve is known to many, most of whom were put in possession of it 
in a way which does not permit them, consistently with their integrity as 
christians to make it known. We are no friends to secret associations of 
any sort, nor do we believe it possible long to conceal any plan, good or 
bad, for 'whatsoever is spoken in the closet shall be proclaimed upon the 
house top.' 

We have only to say, that if those who are engaged in the plan alluded 
to, find their views and motives misapprehended in the above con>- 
munication, they shall have the use of our columns to set the matter in a 
fair point of light, provided a responsible name be given." 

The above developement of facts, proceeding as it did, from so respec- 
table a source, occasioned no small excitement. Tt was soon corroborated 
by different persons, in other papers. The most respectable Calvinistic 
papers, however, were profoundly silent on the subject. The only ex- 
ception with which we are acquainted, for several months, was an anony- 
mous piece in the Rochester Observer, in which the fact, was admitted; but 
it was stated that the conduct of this secret agent was not sanctioned by 
Presbyterians. This ground, however was soon ascertained to be untenable, 
a Rochester paper having given the names of five resp ectab le Presbyterians, 
who were engaged in the matter; and reference having' been made to un- 
deniable circumstances by which it was notoriously manifest. In this 
state, it was again allowed to slumber for several months, until the 
Charleston Observer took it up, and gave to the whole affair, another as- 
pect: representing the secret agent as having been engaged, not to pro- 
mote a "religious party in politics;" butin the advancement of benevolent 

q2 



186 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

institutions: such as Sunday schools, tract societies, &c. The Charleston 
Observer says: 

**More than three months ago, we saw an article in the *Christian Ad- 
vocate and Journal,' (a Methodist paper) headed 'Murder "Will Out.' The 
same article was re-published in the 'Christian Register,' (a Unitarian pa- 
per) with some additional remarks, headed 'Orthodox Designs?' and in a ' 
Tiumber of other papers with which we exchange. The whole statement 
appeared to us so palpably false, as not to ^deserve notice. Some re- 
cent circumstances, however, which it is not necessary to detail — have , 
again brought it to our notice: and we have concluded, even at this late 
day, to give our readers the full benefit of this joint production of a 
Methodist and a Unitarian paper. We copy from the (Unitarian) 
Register:" 

^'ORTHODOX DESIGNS. 

*'We select the following article from the Yew- York (Methodist) 
'Christian Advocate and Journal,' of August 15th. It appears there as a 
communication, and is accompanied by some appropriate remarks of the 
editor. We are glad to find this respectable and extensive denomination 
of christians alive to the wiles of the Calvinistic sect, and resolutely de- 
termined to expose and denounce the crooked policy, by which the lea- 
ders of that sect are seeking the gratification of their insatiable thirst of 
power. We trust our readers will mark well, and regard with the serious- 
ness which the subject really demands, this bold and deep laid plot against 
our political as well as our christian hberties." 

Here comes in the extract from the Advocate, given above. 
The editor of the Charleston observer proceeds: 
««We have become so accustomed to the abuse and calumny of the 
Advocate, that in general, we feel no sort of emotion on their repetition, and 
have no disposition either to repel its slanders, or reply to its reproaches. 
And if the article in question had no more alarming aspect than that of an 
open attack upon our denomination, we should have passed it by utterly 
unnoticed. But this movement on the part of the editor of the 'Advo- 
cate,' diflPers materially from his ordinary mode of assault. He does not 
stop at the usual point of representing Presbyterians as holding sentiments 
which are pernicious in the extreme, and our churches unworthy of the 
christian name — but he goes further, and through us makes a deadly 
thrust at those noble institutions of christian benevolence, which are the 
glory of our age and nation. 

It is the evident object of the article in question, to represent Congre- 
gational and Presbyterian ministers, as a set of unprincipled politicians^ 
and avaricious speculating hypocrites, who, under cover of a zeal for mis- 
sions, and for distributing tracts and Bibles, are secretly plotting- an ec- 
clesiastical establishment, and at the same time collecting funds in order 
to monopohze the whole book-selling trade of the nation, so as to secure 
for themselves private wealth and political aggrandizement. 

As it respects themselves, the objects of this attack only smile at its 
senseless absurdity, and disregard its impotent mahce. But we cannot 
be indifferent with respect to its tendency. All the cunning of a college 
of Jesuits, could not have invented a more subtle, insinuating, withering 
slander against the charitable efforts which are now making to extend the 
knowledge of redemption. 

The object, manifestly is to represent our theological seminaries as nurse- 
ries of politicians and speculators-^our missionaries and collecting agents as 
secret spies, and intriguers — and our benevolent institutions a mere empty 
parade to gull the community, while we are pocketing their spoils and 
perfecting our schemes of plunder and usurpation. 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 187 

Nothing" need be said to evince how disastrous an effect such insinua- 
tions are likely to have. Their author may safely congratulate himself 
on his success, in closing many a hand and heart against the claims of 
charity — of cutting off some of the resources, and drying up some of 
the streams on which the operations of missionary and Bible societies 
depend — and ultimately, of withholding from many a family the bread of 
life, and depriving many a destitute community of a guide to heaven. 

As to this attack upon these benevolent institutions, we have nothing to 
say. They belong to Christ, and he will vindicate, preserve and protect 
them. 

In reply to these false accusations against Presbyterian ministers, we 
have a i'ew remarks to make, and we make them calmly and fearlessly. 
We say then, that the statements and insinuations in the above article, 
are utterly false; and we defy its author to the proof \ and in case he de- 
clines adducing his testimony, or fails in substantiating his charges, he 
must be regarded as a base calumniator, and a wicked accuser of the 
brethren. '* 

The above remarks of the Observer, with others not quoted, called 
forth the following, from the Rev. J. Emory, [now bishop Emory.] 

**An article headed 'Murder will out,' published in the Christian Advo- 
cate and Journal about four months since, and signed *A Layman,' has 
been all this time, it seems, rankling in the heart of the editor of the 
Observer. — He has not only let the sun go down on his wrath, but it has 
been festering in his bosom for months. The depth and violence of it 
may be judged from the present ebullition. We are really glad that he 
has thrown it off, because we hope he will now be easier. 

I did myself, Messrs. Editors, feel an objection to the article of *A Lay- 
man,' when I first saw it in print. Not because I did not believe the sub- 
stance of the facts stated; but because their application was too general. 
From that article It might have been supposed that the travelling agent 
alluded to had called together 'the ministers of the gospel in every city 
and neighborhood,' or 'meetings of the clergy in every place,' for the 
purpose of committing his 'secret' to them, under an injunction of se- 
crecy. Now, though I am as well assured as I can be by testimony, that 
there has been an agent going through the country very extensively, 
recommended by persons of high standing in certain denominations, 
(unless his papers were forgeries,) and for the purposes, substantially, as 
stated by *A Layman;' and although I am equally well assured that secret 
meetings were called in various places, for the developement and further- 
ance of that secret object, yet I never was present myself at any such a 
meeting, though a minister: and I believe many others of my brethren in 
the ministry never were: and my chief objection to the article of 'A Lay- 
man' was, that its sweep, in relation to the clergy, was so indiscriminate: 
whereas, I have no doubt that the great body of the clergy in this country, 
of every denomination, would have spurned the 'secret,' or treated it 
with its merited contempt. My informants are all ministers, to whom the 
secret was disclosed by the agent himself, who showed them his papers 
and recommendations, and some of whom were present at the meetings 
mentioned, and were solicited to aid in carrying the project into execu- 
tion. They resided In Cincinnati, (Ohio,) in Pittsburg, (Pa.) and in this 
city, and are men, if named, as they can be, to whom the public would 
yield as full credit as even to Mr. Gilderslleve, especially when he writes 
on a subject of which, by his own showing, he is perfectly ignorant." 
In addition to the above extract, we make the foljowing from the Ad- 
^ vocate of December 26, m answer to the Charleston Observer: 

"As to what the Charleston Observer has said respecting the 'accus. 



188 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

tomed abuse and calumny' uttered by the Advocate and Journal, we have 
a few words to say. Tn regard to our 'making- a deadly thrust at Bible^ 
missionary, and tract societies,' in what we said respecting the above 
mentioned plan, the Observer has uttered this grave charge on its own 
responsibility, and must dispose of it as best suits its interest or con- 
venience. 

The following are the editorial remarks whlcli accompanied the 
communication of *A Layman,' as published in this paper of August 15th 
last— - 

*How the author of this communication came to the knowledge of the 
secret combination on which he has animadverted so freely and justly, we 
cannot tell. That a plan similar to the above is in operation, we believe 
is known to many, most of wliom were put in possession of it in a way 
which does not permit them, consistently with their integrity as christians* 
to make it known. We are no friends to secret associations of any sort, 
nor do we believe it possible long to conceal any plan, good or bad, for 
'whatsoever is spoken in the closet, shall be proclaimed upon the house 
tops.' 

For the truth of what is contained in this article respecting a plan in 
secret operation, the senior editor of this paper, who is the author of the 
present remarks, is alone responsible. And he is so far from retracting 
anything there said, that he now affirms most unequivocally, that he had 
personal knowledge of the facts on which the declaration respecting the 
above mentioned plan was based — that he saw in the hand writing of the 
agent, who had been travelhng extensively, as stated by 'A Layman,' the 
proposed plan — that being solicited by the ag-ent himself to an interview, 
he submitted to the senior editor of this paper his plan in writing, not un- 
der any promise of secrecy, but by simply requesting that for the present 
it might not be divulged. 

To avoid circumlocution I will speak in the first person. I read the 
document with attention, although it was long, and in its details quite 
complex. It appeared to me a very ingeniously devised plan to accomplish 
the object contemplated. Its object was professedly religious and politi- 
cal; and I scruple not to affirm that if it could be carried into effect with- 
out opposition, it might be made one of the most powerful political 
engines ever invented by man; and although I have no right to affirm that 
it entered into the design of its inventor, I do consider it of a character 
dangerous to the civil and religious liberties of our country, should it ever 
be used for that purpose, — and that I so expressed myself to its author, 
observing at the same time, that his motive might be good. I moreover 
explained to him, in the most pointed manner I could, my objections; told 
him, when he informed me that he had calculated on the support of the 
Methodists, that I should very much deprecate the day that any minister or 
member of our church should set his name to his constitution as one of 
its patrons. 

In my last interview with this gentleman, I informed him expressly tlia* 
T would not hold myself bound — as indeed I had never promised him to d{;> 
so — to keep his plan a secret, but should feel myself at perfect liberty to 
say what I pleased, either privately or publicly, respecting it — and more- 
over, if any attempt should be made to carry it into execution, 1 felt my- 
self under the most solemn obligation to oppose it by every honest and 
honorable means. 

I moreover know, because I saw their signatures, that his plan was re- 
commended by some respectable gentlemen, ministers and others, not of 
our denomination, one of whom I well remember stands at the head of 
a theological institution in the state of New-York. To be sure, this agent 



OF PRESS YTBRIANISM. 189 

had other plans in view, to aid him, in which considerable sums were sub- 
scribed by a number of gentlemen of high standing in society; but, as 
far as I understand it, the several objects were in some sort blended to- 
gether, though that now particularly under consideration seemed to be 
die principal one. 

Now these are facts of which I am as certain as I am of any thing I ever 
saw or heard, though I cannot otherwise prove them— being alone in my. 
interviews with Mr.C, and being requested not to show his manuscript to 
any one— than by the collateral testimony of those who have heard Mr. C. 
develope his pla'n verbally. That he has so done to many, I have no 
doubt. 

I have not said, nor do I now say, that the members of tlie Presbyterian 
church, nor the Presbyterian clergymen, are responsible for this plan; but 
that some of them approved of it I do know, unless his docaments were 
forged. 

Having thus stated the facts in the case, I think it due to Mr. -C ., the 
professed author of this plan, to state that I never felt any disposition to 
impugn his motives. He may have persuaded himself to believe that by 
putting it into the power of those who should become members of this 
great society, to elect the president of these United States, the governors 
of the individual states, &c., the great ends of justice might be the better 
secured, and the interests of religion more efifectually protected and pro- 
moted,— not duly considering, that history, the best and most infaUilsle 
interpreter of men's m.otlves and actions, attests the great danger of ac- 
cumulating political power into the hands of the church That the plan 
of which I am speaking did contemplate this control over the elections 
of our country, will not be controverted by any who have been made ac- 
quainted wlthit. For my part, I should consider it my duty to oppose such 
apian of operations, let it originate from whomsoever it might, as being 
prejudicial to the best interests of our country, and destructive in its con- 
sequences to the pure religion of the Lord Jesus Christ. 

I should not have felt it my duty to enter into this detail, iiad not the 
Charleston Observer poured out such a flood of abuse against the Chris- 
tlan Advocate and Journal, accusing it of uttering falsehoods, &c. I 
■would furthermore observe, that I never had any fear that this ingenious 
plan, so curiously contrived to accomplish the object of its author, to gain 
apohtical ascendency by religious means, would ever gain the approba- 
tion and support of the community. The age is too much enlightened. 
There are too many religious sects, and political parties, to permit such 
an amalgamation of the several denominations, as would be necessary to 
effect such an object. On these accounss, I should not have thought it 
of sufficient importance to justify such a detail of circumstances, had not 
tlie veracity of former statements been called in question by the Charles- 
ton Observer." 

That the editor of the Observer should positively affirm the statements 
concerning this secret plot to be "utterly false;" and that the assertion 
should be reiterated by the editors of the Calvinistic Magazine, is really 
strange. They certainly "reckoned without their host." For their 
satisfaction, and that of others who may wish to know more concerning 
tliis subject, we will give a few extracts from other papers. 

From the Gospel Mvocafe, printed at Auburiiy New-York. 
"LOOK OUT! 

"The following article which we extract from 'Plain Truth,* is indeed 
a confirmation of the alarming fact that the Presbyterians have been 
gecretly at work, for years past, to effect a 'union of church and state. * 
The name of the 'travelling agent' is known to the editor of this paper. 



190 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

and there are many in this village who can bear witness that all the mate- 
rial facts stated in the following article are substantially correct. The 
*ag-ent' received^his education at the theological seminary in this place, 
and is now absent on a tour to obtain donations for carrying into operation 
his plan. We know more of this felloiu than we areat liberty to disclose, 
having been laid with others under injunctions of secrecy. But as the 
fact is partially revealed — the murder partly out, we venture to make 
these observations with the hope that some person who is more at liberty, 
will tear off the mask, and expose to merited contempt the long-faced 
hypocrite who is voluntarily the tool of clerical conspirators." 
"CONFIRMATION. 
"To the Editors of Plain Truth.— I rejoice that the veil has been 
rent, and a deep laid and well matured plot of the Presbyterian party to 
acquire political ascendancy, has been stript of its secrecy and exposed 
to public criticism. The article which you copied in }Our last number 
from the Christian Advocate and Journal, is true in every essential par- 
ticular; but the disclosures are not so full as they might have been. I 
have been in possession of the facts in relation to this stupendous plot for 
nearly a year, and have oftfen thought that duty to my fellow-countrymen 
required tliat I should make them public, but 1 have been deterred from 
so doing by the fear that the boldness and magnitude of this scheme would 
excite doubts in the minds of some, of its reality, and as it was conceived 
and nurtured in secret, I should be wanting in proof to substantiate the 
truth of my statements. But, happily, the veil has been rent, and I rejoice 
that there are more tongues than mine to proclaim the conspiracy, and 
warn my countrymen of the impending danger. 

In the latter part of August or fore part of September of last year, a 
travelling agent visited this part of the country, and delivered lectures to 
such as could safely be entrusted with the secret. He descanted at 
great length upon the present condition of the press in this country, 
said it was under the control of men supporting no religious creed, that 
with this tremendous engine in their hands the}^ were enabled to give a 
wrong direction to public sentiment, and elevate such men only to power 
and office as accorded with them In opinion, &c,, and concluded by pro- 
posing 

That a CENTRAL SOCIETY be estabhshed at Washington city, of a 
character both political SiXid religious; that a fund be raised to be expended 
in printing books, tracts and newspapers; that the central printing estab- 
lishment be under the management of nine directors, a majority of whom 
should approve as well the matter which should appear in the national 
paper, as the books which should be published; and that newspapers and 
bookstores, subordinate to the national institution, be established in all 
the cities and principal towns in the Union. 

Tlie books and papers thus published, he said, would not cost half so 

much as they now do, and, as the present publishers are not organized as 

■ a party, and cannot print so cheap, they could easily be broken down, 

and the country supplied with such newspapers, traces, and books, only 

as should be approved as orthodox. 

He said the project had been heartily approved in every part of the 
country he had visited; that upwards of §300,000 had already been sub- 
scribed, and that the society would be organized, and commence opera- 
tions, so soon as $500,000 should be raised. 

This plan he communicated under the strictest obligations of secrecy. 
It was approved by some to whom he submitted it, but not by all. 

I do not know how much money was subscribed in this place, but I have 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. ±gi 

been informed that the great western jojoneer of this religlo-political uartv 
[Mr. Bissell] subscribed §50. ^ * 

By the proceeding's of the Presbyterian convention which was held in 
this village on the 20th of August, you will perceive that some steps have 
already been taken to carry the above project into effect. That con- 
vention consisted of Presbyterian ministers from nearly every part of the 
State, and sat, I am informed, with closed doors. 

As my purpose was merely to corroborate the statement made in the 
Christian Advocate and Journal, I leave it for you or your readers to make 
such comments as the subject may suggest. j3 

Auburn, (N. F.) Sept. 11, 1828." 

*'The above disclosures furnish a key to the memorable declarations of 
Dr. Ell/, at Philadelphia, and of Mr. Wisner, at Utica and Auburn. To 
doubt any longer that the ultimate purpose of all tlie national and auxiliary 
schemes of 'benevolence' of the Presbyterians, is to invest themselves 
with a power co-equal with, if not superior to, that of our present civil 
government, would be hke doubting the existence of the earth on which 
we daily tread." 

In the Rochester Observer of October last, a writer over the signature 
of "A Presbyterian" comes out and acknowledges the fact of all that is 
stated concerning this secret agent; but rejoices that he has seen no one 
who is favorable to his plans. In answer to tliis piece, we find the follow- 
ing published in another Rochester paper: 

"Rev. ISIr. CuERnr. — The abandonment of this distinguished Presby- 
terian leader by his former confederates and abettors, in the hour of trou- 
ble, brought on by the exposure of a deep laid plot to acquire an absolute 
control of the American press, in which he was but an agent, is charac- 
teristic of all conspirators, and shows how unsafe it is to place confidence 
in men whose governing motives are power and emolument. 

*A Presbyterian,' in the last Rochester Observer, who claims to know 
as much about the matter as any one in this region, having been 'closeted 
with Cherry one whole winter evening, to hear a detail of his plan,' which 
he 'believes to be substantially the same as now published at the west ' 
and republished in Plain Truth, feigns great joy at the exposure of the 
reverend gentleman, and says that he has 'seen no one who has enter- 
tained a favorable opinion of the feasibility of the views and plans of this 
said Mr. Cherry.' Now, the absurdity of the last statement is made mani- 
fest by the fact that 'this said Mr. Cherry,' has been for several years past 
an 'authorized agent' of the Presbyterian party, supported wholly at their 
expense, has travelled through nearly every state in the Union, and ob- 
tained subscriptions to the amount of more than $300,000, for the express- 
purpose of breaking down all the old printing establishments in the coun- 
try, and supplying their places with others of an orthodox character. In 
Rochester, six Presbyterians subscribed $275— not $150— as stated in our 
last number. Now, in the name of common sense, we ask, if 'no one 
entertained a favorable opinion of the feasibility of this plan,' by what ne- 
cromancy was priest Cherry enabled to get $300,000 subscribed to carry 
it into effect? We will now give the names of five of the six citizens of 
Rochester, who, Mr. Cherry stated, subscribed $275. They are 
JOSIAH BISSELL, Ja. $50 

HARVEY ELY, g5(> 

WILLIAM JAMES, §50 

ABRAHAM PLUMB, $50 

* $50 

ABNER WAKELEE, $50 

"Who can believe that any one of the above gentlemen would, kave 



192 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

thus lavished his money upon a project which he did not approve or deem 
feasible? But above all, would Mr. Bissell, who boasts that he never- 
en^^ages in an enterprise without resoluteness to carry it through— would 
Mr. Bissell have subscribed |50 for a project which he did not approve or 
deem feasible? 

Remarks. — That there exists among the leaders in the 
Presbyterian church, the determination to doom to utter ex- 
tinction, the light that guides the friends of equal rights, and 
that liberty of mind which is their glory, is too apparent to re- 
quire any further proof. It is quite impossible that the 
above named transaction can be misconstrued. What! mis- 
construe an attempt to establish a national printing estah- 
lishment, which should monopolize all the printing in the 
union! What will Presbyterians say to these things? Will 
they still say that the charge of aiming at an establishment 
is false? Or what will they say? Why, verily, they will say 
nothing, as they generally do when they get into a difficulty 
of a serious nature. 

Andj indeed, when this affair first came to the light, the 
more knowing ones of them, remained profoundly silent. 
i^Murder," ye pious gentry! '■^willoiit^^ and out every 
thing too, and when any set of men are clearly convicted, 
they had better hold their peace, find not manifest the badness 
of their cause by a lame effort at defence. If the names of 
all who subscribed to parson Cherry^s paper, throughout the 
United States, could be come at, and published as they ought 
to be, it ^ would make some of them feel Just oniddUng! 
Could a list of their names be had, it would be seen, that ail 
the leading ministers and members of the Presbyterian 
church in the union, were subscribers. And as still as it has 
been kept, there were two gentlemen subscribed, who resid- 
ed in Knoxville! 

And should any of the members or friends of the ^'Central 
Society," think proper to stir this matter a little, they can 
hear something more on the subject, for, I may in truth say, 
the half has never yet been told. 

It is a little singular that the ^^westehn pilgrim," who 
in 18^9, was favored with an opportunity of eve-dropping, 
and over-hearing a lengthy conversation between a number 
of the most respectable and distinguished Devils, in a certain 
cave, did not hear any thing said, either pro or con, with re- 
gard to this project! But, by the bye, it occurs to me, that 
his Satannic Majesty, only related to his welcome guest the 
pilgrim, one sideofthe question. He informed the Pilgrim that 
the great body of the Methodists, especially, the Bishops, Pre- 



OF TRESBYTERIAXISM. 193 

5idlng Elders, and CircuitPreachers, were all employed in the 
work of Devils!— that the editors of the Christian Advocate 
and Journal, published to the world such things astheDevil sug- 
gested to them; — thatduringtheAmericanRevolution,Metho- 
dist preachers acted a part against this country; — thatthe-Mis- 
sionary, Bible, Tract, and Sunday School Societies, and other in- 
stitutions under the control of the Methodists, were gotten up by 
the management of the Devil !— and in short, thatall theleadino- 
doctrines, and the entire polity of the Methodist Episcopal 
Church, were just such as the Devils would have them to be! 
Now, as it was generally known, that the Devil was always a li- 
ar, this fiend-like slang would have done the cause of Metho- 
dism no harm, but for the circumstance of its coming from a 
Hopkinsianpreacher! What! did ever any minister of the gos- 
pel take up his abode in the midst of the stench, and smoke, 
and brimstone, of a goblin cavern — a cave of devils, and af- 
terwards relate ioT facts, the statements made to him in those 
dolorous regions? Yes, a Hopkinsian clergyman, not an hun- 
dred miles from Rogersville, under the inliuence of ardent 
spirits, did as reported by himself, enter the deviPs den, 
and hear all this low slanjr, and all these false accusations 
against Methodist preachers; and though he acknowledges 
that these accusations wers brought against tbem by the Dev- 
il, still he publishes them to the world for facts, through the 
medium of a periodical, of which, he was at that time, ostens- 
ibly the editor! Shame! shame! This pilgrim has since set 
out on a pilgrimage to the west, and as I am informed, lo- 
cated in the meridian of Cincinnati. It is to be hoped, he has 
there found better co?npani/: for it is certain that, his con- 
nexion with his Satannic Majesty, while in East Tennessee, 
corrupted his morals very much. And having taken up his 
residence in a more salubrious clime, and in the midst of a 
higher order of beings— it is devoutly hoped, that in future, 
he will never so far degrade the ministerial office again, as to 
hold communion with the Devil ! However, should he renew 
his acquaintance with his Satannic Majesty, and learn from 
him, things both ''new and old;'^ — in view of the disgrace 
ful circumstances under which he left this country, nothing he 
may hereafter publish will be believed. If the world were 
full of such men as the Pilgrim, I should be constrained to ad- 
mit the truth of the horrible sentiment of Voltaire: that 
mankind are <<a mere set of walking carcases, hateful and 
self-hated, doomed to disorder here, and to annihilation here- 
after.^' The Pilgrim reminds me of the picture of the Bo- 



19i HKIPS TO THE STUDY 

hon Upas, which is beautiful; while the shade of the real tree 
is disease, and the fruit, death. 

Were I disposed to use all the epithets, found in the vocab- 
ulary which the excitement of the times has rendered but too 
common, I might call him an enemy to religion, a sacrile- 
gious man, a blasphemer, a tyrant, a most violent usurper of 
unjust dominion over others, a slanderer of the dead and the 
living, the man of sin, — the son of perdition. But passion 
is not piety; the calling of hard names is not argument; the 
loading of an opponent with curses and detraction, is not the 
most probable way of convincing him, nor is the exhibition 
of the odium theologicum a very happy exemplification of 
obedience to those precepts, which require us, when we are 
reviled, not to revile again, and dem^and that *«the servant of 
the Lord should not strive, but be gentle towards all men, 
meekly instructing those who oppose themselves to the truths 
if peradventure God will give them repentance.'^ 



CHAPTER VI. 

THE HISTORY AND MYSTERY OF A CERTAIN FORTY-ONE DOL- 
LARS AND FORTY-FOUR CENTS. 

The collisions in the political world — the disputes be- 
tween contending parties — the contentions among the dif- 
ferent orders of christians — and I may add, the conflicts 
among brethren of the same household — have all tended to 
keep alive that keen sensibility of soul which makes us 
watch each other's movements with a jealous eye, to mark 
any deviations from what each one may think just and true, 
with a more than usual solicitude. All this, if kept within 
the bounds of christian moderation, may be productive of 
much good. But if suffered to run wild, in the open fields 
of bold and unchastened speculation, to riot at large in an un- 
restrained abuse of each other's measures and conduct, in- 
stead of promoting peace and good will among men, it will 
only tend to engender strife, and to stir- up every evil work. 
Aware of these things, I have endeavored in this Work, as 
much as possible, to avoid coloring as high as I might have 
done, and still have kept strictly within the bounds of* truth. 
This rule I shall observe in this chapter. Like the fabled 
Dragon, which is said never in sleep to close his lidless eyes, 
I have, for several years past, exerted my every nerve in de- 
fence of truth, and In opposing error; and this I will continue 



OF PRESBYTERIAVISM. 193 

toAo, while I have strength to wield a pen, or lungs, to sound 
the alarm. I am well aware of the deadly opposition which 
will be made to this work; notwithstanding it has, hereto 
fore, been the polici/ of those whose evil deeds I have brought 
to the light, to treat me with silent contempt. Being; a kind 
ot privileged character, I have several times been allowed 
peaceably to publish my sentiments to the world; and great 
pains have been taken, to make the above unfavorable im- 
pression on the public mind, for the express purpose, of pre- 
venting what I might say from having its due weio-ht It is 
rational to expect this from those whose unholy designs are 
tried, -y.^ so as hy fire.:^ Let them pour upon me the vials 
ot contumely, reproach, defamation, and all the baser pas- 
sions of the human heart, I shall still go on in the bold but 
even tenor of my way. The law of Athens, at one time, 
made it a capital offence for any citizen to remain neutral in 
times of danger This is as it should be. A lukewarm 
triend is more to be dreaded than an open enemy. If ive 
lean upon them for support, we shall find to our cost, that we 
have leaned upon a broken reed. Away, then, with this 
mean, contemptible, time-serving policy. This is no time to 
-becomeall things to all men,-^at least, in the sense some 
^em to understand the injunction. But I must fly off in a 
tangent to another subject. 

^J^^ T'^ shameful transaction connected with the iniqui- 

h^ n7Th^"^n"^-^^"P^^'^^^^"^^^ i" East Tennessee? is 
that of the collection and dl.tHbuliuu of a certain/oVone 
dollar, and forty. four cents, taken up at a Sy nodical meet- 
ing held in Athens, i;i the Fall of ' 1830. That ^e r^d', 
may more ully understand this matter, I will ^..r: J.Z^l 
lish a circular, which some few weeks after this occurrence 
was published and circulated through that section of country 



'strange proceedings. 



plUhn,e„t of the MILL^E'llN'^UM^i: Lt[Z 't:^tCyl^\:'::^ 
iZZ-^wr ", *"' !"''''=<' op™""' *at whatever me^sTe D vinTBe 

Sttrfa^f 1,*?n""''%'^'=P"''^^'l<'* ""^ Hedeemer-s Kingdom. This 
hrbitfat once '.h/?-"'^ ■="''""• *^*'' "■"»♦ "-^ ^"PPortedi and ex! 
everv ftir^r*' f r^^t.^Port^nce and necessity of the contributions of 

■cf"Lr.ence."''"^^'"''^^ ^'' '^- ""= -"^<^'"? -^*- of suoh an act 

whfrerEriT[hfmtf"o?s;rir:h"^ 

denUy solicited to aid in this ^2^1 and ^nl ■=™g'!S»fO" were ar- 
tunicate Go^peUiherty tolStStftXTn^^r^^^ ^ S" 



196 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

ten dollars, five dollars, one dollar, half dollar, quarter dollar, and what- 
ever they choose. According-ly a collection of about forty-one dollars and 
forty-four cents was made for the use and support of Foreign Missions^ 
which, on the next day, by a unanimous vote of the Synod, was appro- 
priated to the use and support of Borne Missions. Had the cong-regation 
been apprised that it was desig-ned for the use and support of Home Mis- 
sions, it is presumable the amount of contributions would not have been 
quite so great. Can a Christian Ministry act in this way and be guiltless? 
Does not such disguised villainy lie shrouded with the mantle of Chris- 
tian benevolence, at the bottom of most of their schemes of Gospel monop- 
oly? 

Should the facts herein contained be disputed, they will, at any time, 
be proven and established by the best of testimony. 

A FRIEND TO THE BEST INTEREST OF MAN. 

Nov. 20, 1830." 

Now, I have repeatedly been charged with writing the 
above circular, and I have as repeatedly denied the charge^ 
not that I disapprove of its publication, or disbelieve its con- 
tents. But, had I written it, instead of saying ^^strange pro- 
ceedings," I would have said, common pkoceedings! For 
among these clerical jugglers, this mode of embezzlement, 
this species of clandestine conspiracy, against the pockets 
and purses of the American people, is but too common. The 
following correspondence will enable the reader to decide up- 
on the ai(thor ship of this production: 

"Stbawberhy PiAiifs, April 28, 1834. _ 
*'i?ev. George Home: — Sir, I have to request a favor of you, which, if 
leisure will permit and inclination prompt, I am sure you will grant. It 
is this; I wish to know if j-au <aj.c nut the avi-tKor of a certain circular pub- 
lished in 1830, headed "strange proceedings," and signed "a. friexd to 
THE BEST INTEREST OF MAN;" and purporting to be an exposition of a cei-- 
tain Jesuitical exploit, performed in your town by certain Hopkinsian 
preacUei-s, in relation to a certsiin forty-one dollars and forty-four cents. 

I expect shortly to publish a book, in which, I intend to set this sacri- 
legious transaction forth in its true light; and if you are the author of the 
production to which I allude, and have no objection, I will use your name 
to that effect. 

I have, myself, been charged with the authorship of the aforesaid cir- 
cular; and though I had no part or lot in the matter, yet, I know its con- 
tents to be true; and after it had made its appearance, I cordially approv- 
ed its publication, as did many others, to my certain knowledge. 
I am. Reverend Sir, your obedient humble serv't. 

W. G. BROWNLOW." 

"Athens, Ten. 27th June, 1834. 
Brother Brownlow: — Dear Sir, I returned home from the East, day be- 
fore yesterday, and received your favor of the 28th April last, request- 
ing me to inform you whether or not, I am the author of a certain circu- 
lar, headed "strange proceedings," and signed "A friend to the best in- 
terest of man." With regard to this, I can but reply in the affirmative; 
having written it from ». personal knowledge of the facts therein exposed; 



OF PBESBTTERIANISM, 197 

and> having been inclined thereto from a desire to correct errOi% without 
injuring the feelings of any consistent and pious persons; — I have how- 
ever, no particular wish that it should be re-published, but as you may 
not wish to be regarded as its author, I shall not object to your making 
any use of it that you may wish. 

Respectfully, &c. GEORGE HORNE." 

As a powerful struggle will be made to get out of this 
shameful matter, I will adduce such clear and strong proof, 
as will place it beyond the reach of successful contradiction. 
The following certilicate I obtained the day after this collec- 
tion was raised: 

*^At the request of Mr. Brownlow, we the undersigned do certify, that 
we were at the Hopkuisian Synodical meeting, held in Athens in Octo- 
ber, 1830; and on Sabbath of said meeting, we heard Doctor Anderson 
preach what he called a viissionary sermon, at the close of which, the hats 
were carried round, and a collection of money raised for the support of 
the missionary cause. In the sermon, the speaker frequently spoke of 
the accomplishment of the Millenium, and enumerated tlie destitute na- 
tions, naming the heathen nations yet destitute of the Gospel, and ardentj 
iy solicited the aid of the people to supply said heathens. We moreover 
certify, that we heard nothing in said seraion to authorize a belief, that 
the money was for any other purpose but that of Foreign Missions. 

G. R. COX, 
JOHN HARD WICK, 
JOHN BOLDING." 

"Being requested to state what we know, about a certain collection and 
appropriation of $41 and some cents, at tlie Hopkinsian Synod held at 
Athens last fall, we think proper to say that we evidently understood 
the collection to have been made for the use of Foreign Missions, and we 
were astonished on the next day, or day after, to notice an appropriation 
of the above collection of §41 and some cents, by the members of the 
Synod unanlmouslv, to the use of Home Missions. Given under our 
hands 29th July, 1831. 

GEORGE HORNE, 
ABRAMA. HEARD." 

"This is to certify, that I held a conversation with Doctor Anderson in 
Maryville, relative to the money collected at the Synod in Athens last 
fall, and he told me that he did not say what society of missions the 
money was for, and that foreign missions were not named at the time the 
collection was made! ! ! He also told me that they had appropriated the 
money to the use and support of Home missions, and that Mr. Hoyt had 
the money ready for the Board. 

August 7, 1831. IRA FALLS." 

In commenting on the above certificates, and the matter to 
which they refer, I have only to say, that all six of the men 
whose names are attached thereunto, are gentlemen of the 
^rst respectability: and three of them, to wit, Home, Bold- 
ing and Falls, are Ministers of very respectable standing in 
r2 



198 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

the Methodist Episcopal Church. However, I must be per- 
mitted to add, that, to my own knowledge, the gentleman who • 
preached the aforesaid sermon, was particular to mention 
lifrica, Greenland, and the JSborigines of our own coun- 
try, as the objects of the people's charity; and he assured 
them, that their money would be appropriated to the use \ 
and support of missionaries who might be sent out to those -^ 
destitute regions. How the gentleman will avoid the charge 
of having acted with duplicity on that occasion, I know not, 
unless he shall say that by the aborigines he meant the Hi- 
wasseans; — that by Greenland he meant the Sequatcheans; 
— and that by Africa he intended JVestern Virginia or the 
upper part of East Tennessee, as the negro population is 
greatest in those parts! 

Knowing as I did, that there w^ere but three Boards, to 
which the Presbyterians accounted for monies received in this 
way, viz: the Assembly's Board at Philadelphia, the For- 
eign Board at Boston, and tlie Plome Board at New York; 
and being determined at the same time, to ascertain, if pos- 
sible, what had become of this money, I addressed letters to 
each of these places, of which the following is a copy: 

"Mabisoxyiile, Tejt. July 5th, 1831. 
'■^Dear Sir: — At the last Synodical meeting held in Athens, Tennessee, 
in October last, there was a certain sum of money collected for the use 
and support of Foreig-n Missions; and the individual whose duty it was to 
have forwarded it to you, has not done so, as we think. If he have not, 
there is a defect somewhere, and we wish to remedy it. You will please 
write tome upon the reception of this, and let us know whether you have 
received the money, or an equivalent. 

I am, very respectfully, Sec. W. G. BROWNLOW." 

"Boston, July 19, 1831. 

<-yDear Sir: — Your favor of the 5th inst. has this day been received. 
I'he Kev. Mr. Potter of Creek Path, and the Rev. Mr. Chamberlain of 
Willstown, received $58 88, collected at the meeting" of the Synod of 
West Tennessee; and accounted to our Board for the same, and the 
money is acknowledged in the Missionary Herald for December last, page 
400. — I presume this is the money to which you refer. But if it is not, 
I should be much obliged by any information which you may be able to 
give me rsepecting it. 

I am, dear Sir, yours very respectfully, HENRY HILL. 

Mr. W. G. Browuiow-." 

"OFFICE OF THE BOARD OF MISSIONS, I 
JuLT 2 1st, 1831.3 
'''Dear Sir: — Your letter of the 5th inst. was duly received. I have 
examined our receipts from the time of the meeting of your Synod, and 
see no acknowledgment of any money collected at that time: you men- 
tion ^ov Foreign Missions,- if it was collected for that object, it might have ; 



OF PRE SBYTERIAXISM. ±9$ 

befen sent to Boston, but if for Domestic Missions, it ought to have come 
here; or to the II. M. Society at N. York: if it was intended for the ''As- 
sembly's Board of Missions," it must be sent to S. Alkn, Esq. Treasurer j 
iVo. 34 South 3d Street, Philadelphia. 

Very respectfully, your obed't serv't, 

J. T. RUSSELL, Cor, Sec, 
^V. G. Browxlow." 

"OFFICE OF THE A. H. M. S. 144, Nassatt st., 7 
New York, Jtjiy 2S, 1831. 5 
''Mr. W. G. Brownlow: — Dear Sir, yours of the 5th inst. was duly re* 
ceived. In reply to your inquiry, whether certain monies collected for 
the American Home Missionary Society — at the meeting of the Tennes- 
see Synod in October last, have ever been paid to us — I answer as fol- 
lows: Rev. Darius Hoyt certified to us that §41 had been collected at the 
Synodical mQQ\\n^ previous — which with §3 in his hands before, made the 
amount of §44 in his possession, subject to the order of the American 
Home Missionary Society. In order to avoid the risk of sending it by 
mail, and for the sake of convenience in drawing for it to pay missiona- 
ries in Tennessee, we have chosen to have it remain in Mr. Hoyt's hands. 
We expect to send an order for it in a day or two. With warm wishes 
for the spiritual prosperity of Tennessee, I remain yours, &c. 

A. PETERS, Cor. Sec. A. H. M. S., 

By Chas. Haxi, .Assist, 

Remarks. — The whole matter is now before the reader. 
Let each one judge for himself, so far as honesty or dishonesty, 
truth or falsehood, are concerned. But let no one say, that 
these ministers are excusable, inasmuch as Mr. Hoyt in- 
formed Mr. Peters that the money was in Mary ville, subject 
to his order; for, as before stated, the money was not collected 
for Mr. Peters' board. Besides, if the people had known 
that their money was to go to the use and support of little 
Call' inis tic hoim missiojiaries, as Mr. Home says in his 
circular, ^^it is presumable the amount of contributions would 
not have been quite so great." I would like to hear Messrs. 
Hoyt or Peters answer the following questions. When was 
this money raised.^ /^Ae;z was Mr. Peters notified.^ How 
long isitfrom October, 1830, till July, 1831.^ Was not Mr. 
Peters informed by a correspondent in Maryville, that he 
would be written to on this subject by some one not very 
friendly to the Presbyterians.^ Why was the board at NewJ 
York notified at all, that this money had been raised? Was 
it because of the publication of Home's circular.^ Orw^as it 
because of the publication of Brownlow's pamphlet in tbe 
spring following? Why was not an "order'' sent for this mo- 
ney in less than ten months after it was collected? Why "send 
an order for it in a day or two" after the reception of my 
letter? And last of all, was "Me risk of sending it by maiV 
greater in 1830, than in 1831? But to me, it seems quite 



200 HELPS TO THE STXJDT 

superfluous to multiply questions in reference to this topic, • 
Tiiis may be Hopkinsian disinterested benevolence, but it is 
not the benevolence of the Bible. But benevolence of this 
kind is unworthy the name: it is nothing better than refined, 
attenuated, and decrepid roguery. Not an element does the 
transaction contain, not a quality does it exhibit, which is not 
directly at war with the spirit and practice of Christianity, 
not to say of common honesty. 

The moral disadvantages of such conduct, and its manifest 
tendency, in the hands of such men, to corrupt even the 
heathen themselves, are evils which cannot be too deeply 
deplored. 

The guilt of lying, which attaches itself to the features of 
this transaction, is that of the most odious kind ; it is guilt, the 
offspring of design, illy reflected on, deeply corrupt, shan>e- 
fully false, and secretly though badly matured. Oppression, 
perfidy, malignant passion, restless violation of the rights of 
others, and rank, hot incense of murder, and inhuman spolia- 
tion, all meet in this dark deed. Despair, and death, and 
misery, manifold and worse than death, have, since this oc- 
currence, followed in their ghastly train; and rioted, as with 
infernal drunkenness of delight, amidst the scenes of agony 
occasioned by an improper use of this money. The record 
of this deep crime is now written on tlie sands of Africa and 
Greenland, and stamped on their imperishable rocks! And 
if, gentlemen, in the plenitude of his compassion, that God, 
whose majesty you have thus awfully despised, defied, and 
insulted, shall see fit to confer on you, in token of the pardon 
of your black offence, the honorabl e distinction of pardoned 
sinners, I shall greatly rejoice. 

A few reflections, gentlemen, and I shall have done with 
this matter for the present. Let me only call your attention 
to the object of missions. With this you must be duly im- 
pressed, when you consider the evils which prevail where the 
gospel is not known, and which it is designed to remove. 
Think, gentlemen, of the degradation and misery of all who 
are strangers to the blessings of the gospel. Think of mil- 
lions of immortal beings, bowing down to images, or paying 
religious devotion to reptiles, or to stones. Think of infatua- 
ted mothers, tearing away their smiling infants from their 
bosoms, and easting them to contending alligators, or offering 
them a sacrifice upon the altars of gross superstition. Think 
of the dying agonies of the bereaved widow upon the funeral 
pile of her deceased husband, and the living woes of the son 
who lights, and the weeping orphan who surrounds it. Think 



OF FBESBTTERIANISM. 201 

of the multitudes of infatuated victims annually crushed be- 
neath the wheel of their idol god, and the infinite variety of 
licentious and sanguinary rites which attend the superstitions 
that prevail over a large portion of the eastern hemisphere; 
and then think of this mo?iei/, and of the supreme excellence 
of which these unfortunate creatures have been deprived by 
your conduct. 

From these turn your eyes to the tribes who inhabit our 
western wilderness, for whose spiritual good you said this 
money was in part collected. Mark their degradation of char- 
acter, their sottish habits of life, and the wretchedness and 
misery which every w^here attend them. Look at the con- 
dition of those nations, your neighbors, who are struggling 
for civil liberty and independence. To the true privileges 
of God's people, and the rich blessings of the gospel many 
of them are entire strangers. Gentlemen, your duty is plain, 
and God will require it of you. You have kept back an 
active missionary from some destitute region. What a pity I 
Gentlemen, if you hoard up that money, or apply it to the 
support of home missions, or squander it upon yourselves or 
your families, and neglect the cause for the promotion of 
which you declared it was intended, how will you render up 
an account to God in a coming day? Can you reconcile it 
with your feelings to see your fellow beings in the judgment, 
on the left hand of the Judge, and know that a right use of 
this money, might have been instrumental in their salvation? 
And yet, gentlemen, you are in danger of this, — if you fail 
to restore to them their due; aye, and more too; — you are 
in danger of being found on the left hand with them. 

But must not such conduct do great injury to the cause of 
religion, here in our own country? Will not many, upon 
hearing that ministe7\s act thus, turn away in disgust from all 
religion. In a conversation, which Napoleon Buonaparte 
held with his friends at St. Helena, he said, among many 
other things, «<how is it possible that convifetion can find its 
way to our hearts, when we witness the acts of iniquity of tha 
greatest number of those whose business it is to preach to \i%? 
I am surrounded with priests who preach incessantly that 
their reign is not of this world, and yet, they lay hand^ 
upon every thing they can get!" May God, the fountain 
of all good, save the writer and the reader, from ever bring- 
ing a reproach upon the cause of religion ! And may God, 
in the plenitude of his compassion, grant unto the members 
of this synod, the free and full pardon of this, their almost 
unpardonable sin, is among the most ardent desires of my soul ! 



PART IT. 



Th-e Calvikiian &nd Hopkinsiaa aoctrittefl, in their true colors, as 
contained iu the writings of Calviii and Hopkins, and also the 
'Westminster Confession of Faith, of the Presbyterian church, in 
the United States* 



CHAPTER I. 



■CALVINISM) IN ITS TRUE COLORS, AS CONTAINED IN THE WRI- 
TINGS OF JOHN CALVIN. 

The name of Calvinists^ was given at first to those who 
embraced not only the doctrine, but the church government 
and discipline established at Geneva, by John Calvin, the 
celebrated reformer. 

But since the meeting and unwarrantable transactions of 
the synod of Dort, the name has been applied to all who em- 
brace Calvin's leading views of the gospel. Calvin was born 
at Noyon m Picardy, July 10, 1509. He first studied the 
civil law, and was afterwards made professor of divinity at 
Geneva; and it is a great pity that he did not continue in the 
study and practice of the civil law. Calvin, although a rC' 
former of Geneva, nevertheless aimed at a revival of Romish 
tyranny. Agreeably to the spirit of a certain consistorial 
chamber, or a kind of inquisition, of which he was a distin- 
guished member, he proceeded to most unwarrantable lengths; 
to which indeed he was but too easily impelled by a natural 
warmth and unrelenting hardness of temper. Calvin was 
both in principle and practice, a persecutor. So entirely was 
he in favor of the persecuting measures, that he wrote a 
treatise in defence of them, maintaining the lawfulness of 
them in putting heretics to death ! — And by heretics he meant 
all who differed from himself, such for instance as Servetus 
and Castellio. The former a physician, having written Cal- 
vin some letters upon the mystery of the trinity, which ap- 
peared to contain heterodox notions, he actually made them 
the ground work of a persecution against him; and this perse- 
cution did not cease, or stop in its progress, till the unhappy 
culprit was consigned to the flames ! Previous to Servetus's 
death, upon the recommendation and advice af Calvin,^he 



204 HELPS TO THE STTTDY 

was put into a deep dungeon, where he was almost eaten up 
with vermin, forbidden the supplies he needed in his con- 
iinement, — and with all, before, they cast him into this dun- 
geon, they took from him 97 pieces of gold, a gold chain 
worth 20 crowns, and 6 gold rings! 

Castellio, a man of learning and piety, had the misfortune 
to differ with Calvin in judgment, in relation to absolute pre- 
destination. This Calvin could not bear, and therefore 
treated Castellio in so rude and cruel a manner, that even his 
warmest friends are ashamed to justify him. In his writings 
he calls him, ^'blasphemer, reviler, malicious, barking dog, 
full of ignorance, beastiality and impudence, imposter, a base 
corrupter of the sacred writings, a mocker of God, a con- 
temner of all religion, an impudent fellow, a filthy dog, a 
knave, an impious, lewd, crooked-minded vagabond, beggarly 
rogue./' Castellio, by the persecutions of Calvin, was thrown 
into sii€h circumstances of poverty, that he was scarce able 
to maintain himself And for drawing out of the river 
Rhine, near the banks of which he lived, the wood that 
floated down, (which was every man's property that could 
ciatch it) this charitable man Calvin, published him to the 
world for theft! Reader, this is pious reform! This is re- 
forming that spirit of intolerance in the church of Rome! 
All this cruelty was practised upon a Protestant, in the 
Protestant city of Geneva! And this is the old man, whose 
doctrines, discipline and practice, are held in such high esteem 
by the Presbyterians, and the rest of the Calvinistic denomi- 
nations. But to return. Calvinism, within Ihe last half cen- 
tury, has undergone so many and great changes, or rather 
modifications, that it is no longer in form and appearance 
what it was, that is, in ih^ sermons of Calvinistic divines; 
though, in ih^iv printed ivorks, the doctrine is the same, and 
these they are determined never to revoke. They have used 
a great d<;alof art and policy, and deception, in order to keep 
their doctrine in countenance, but all to little purpose, for the 
sovereign muititude are determined to believe their own ey(^s^ 
in preference to the statements of any people. 

TheCalvinists complain much of being misunderstood and 
misrepresented; but when they shall set forth their new faith, 
and their old faith in plain and intelligible language, I am 
confident their complaints will cease; for I cannot believe 
there is a disposition in the community to do them injustice. 
But the old system of Calvinism all understand: the neiv sys- 
tem no one can understand. Whether a concealed method of 
holding and teaching the doctrines of the gospel be in accord- 



OF PRESBTTERIANISM. 205 

Since with the spirit and design of the same, deserves to be 
seriously considered. And whether or not it be desirable to 
add a number of persons to a church, under a mistaken view 
of what is the faith of that church, will not long be doubted 
by any who love frankness and open dealing. However, I 
do not wonder in the least, that those who resolve all the 
wicked motives and conduct of men and devils, into the 
efficient decrees of God, should labor to conceal their real 
sentiments, or hide the deformities of such a system. Now, 
as John Calvin will be allowed by all to be a competent 
teacher of Calvinism, I insist that his exposition of the doc- 
trine which take his name, may be consulted as the most 
-satisfactory authority. Therefore I shall commence with ex- 
tracts from his own Institutes. He teaches the doctrine in 
the following style: 

**CALVIn's 1K6TITUTES. Vol. 2. 

^'Predestination we call the eternal decree of God, by which he hath 
^rietermined in himself, what be would have to become of every i?idiv{dual 
of mankind. For they are not created with a similar destiny; but eternal 
jife is oi-dained for some, and eternal damnation for others.'" Page 420. 

**We affirm that this counsel, as far as concerns the elect is founded on 
his gratuitous mercy, totally irrespective of human inerit; but that to 
those whom he devotes to condemnation, tlie gate of life is closed by a 
just and irreprehensible, but incomprehensible, judgment. In the elect, 
we consider calling as an evidence of election, and justification as another 
token of its manifestation, till they arrive in g^ory, which constitutes its 
completion. As God seals the elect by vocation and justification, so by 
excluding tlie reprobate from the knowledge of his name and the sanctifi- 
cation of his spirit, he aflbrds an indication of the judgment that awaits 
them." Page 425. ' 

"When the human mind hears these things, its petulence breaks all 
restraint and it discovers as seriaus and violent agitation as if alarmed by 
the sound of a martial trumpet. Many indeed as if they wished to avert 
odium from God, admit election in such a way as to deny that any one 
is reprobated. But this is puerile and abs<.ird, because election itself 
could not exist without being opposed to reprobation. God is said to 
separate those whom he adopts to salvation. To say that others obtain 
by chance or acquire by their own efforts, that which election alone con- 
fers on a few, will be worse than absurd. Whom God passes by there- 
fore he reprobates, and from no other cause, than his determination to 
exclude them from the inheritance which he predestines for his cMldren." 
Page 442. 

"These things will amply suffice for persons of piety and modesty, who 
remember that they are men. But as these virulent adversaries are not 
content with one species of opposition, we will reply to them all a:s occa- 
sion may require. Foolish mortals enter into many contentions with God, 
as though they could arraign him to plead to their accusations. Tn the 
first place they enquire, by what right the Lord is angry with his crea- 
tures who had not provoked him by any previous offence; for that, to de- 
rote to destruction whom he pleases, is more like the caprice of a tyrant 
than the lawful sentence of a j^djg-evtJvat men h»>ir& reason, therefore to 
8 



Uq6 he LI'S TO THE STUDY 

expostulate with God, if they are predestinated to eternal death without 
any demerit of their own, merely by his sovereign will. If such thoughts 
ever enter the minds of pious men, they will be sufficiently enabled to 
break their violence by this one consideration, how exceedingly presump- 
tuous is it only to inquire into the causes of the Divine will: which is in 
fact, and is justly entitled to be, the cause of every thing that exists." 
Page 444. 

* 'Observe 5 all things being at God's disposal, and the decision of 
salvation or death belonging to him, he orders all things by his counsel 
or decree in such a manner, that some men are born devoted from the 
womb to certain death, that his name may be glorified in their destruc- 
tion." Page 449. 

"The perplexity and hesitation discovered at trifles by these pious 
defenders of the justice of God, and their facility in overcoming great 
difficulties, are truly absurd. I inquire again, how it came to pass that 
the fall of Adam, independent of any remedy, should involve so many 
nations with their infant children in eternal death but because such was the 
will of God." Page 460. 

"Another argument often urged to overthrow predestination is, that its 
estabhshment would destroy all solicitude and exertion for rectitude of 
conduct. For who can hear, say they, that either life or death is ap- 
pointed for him by God's eternal and immutable decree, without imme- 
diately concluding that it is of no importance how he conducts himself; 
since no action of his can in any respect either impede or promote the 
predestination of God? Thus all will abandon themselves to despair, 
and run into every excess to which their hcentious propensities may leu4 
them. And truly this objection is not altogether destitute of truth; for 
there are many swine who bespatter the doctrine of predestination with 
their impure blasphemies, and with this pretext elude all admonitions 
and reproofs: God knows what he has determined to do with us: if he 
has decreed our salvation, he will bring us to it in his own time; if he has 
destined us to death, it will be in vain for us to strive against it. But the 
scripture, while it inculcates superior awe, and reverence of mind in the 
consideration of so great a mystery, instructs the faithful in a very difier- 
ent conclusion, and fully refutes the wicked and unreasonable inferences 
of these persons." Page 455. 

"They carry their blasphemies much farther, by asserting, that any 
one who is reprobated by God will labor to no purpose if he endeavor to 
approve himself to him by innocence and integrity of life; but here thej 
are convicted of a most impudent falsehood. For whence could such ex- 
ertion originate but from election? Whoever are of the number of the re- 
probate being vessels made to dishonor, cease hot to provoke the Divine 
■wrath against them by continual transgressions, and to confirm by evident 
proofs the judgment of God already denounced against them; so that 
their striving with him in vain is what never can happen," Page 456. 

"As the Lord, by his effectual calling of the elect, completes the salva- 
tion to which he has predestinated them in his eternal counsel; so he hath 
his judgments against the reprobates, by which he executes his counsel re- 
specting them. Those therefore, whom he hath created to a life of shame 
and a death of destruction, that they might be instruments of his wrath, 
and examples of his severity, he causes to reach their appointed endj 
sometimes depriving them of the opportunity of hearing the word, some- 
times, by the preaching of it increasing their blindness and stupidity.'* 
Page 476. 

Remarks. — It will be seen from the above extracts, that 



or PRESBYTERIANISM. 207 

whatever has or shall come to pass in this world, whether it 
be good or whether it be bad, proceeds from the divine will 
entirely, and is irrevocably fixed from all eternity; God hav- 
ing .S'ecre^/3^;??'e^/e/ermz?iefi? not only the adverse and prosper- 
ous fortune of every person in this world, but also his faith 
and infidelity, his obedience and disobedience, and conse- 
quently his everlasting happiness or misery after death; which , 
fate or predestination it is not possible, by any foresight or 
wisdom, to avoid. 

The principle involved in this doctrine, that is God's ab- 
solute decree, is directly at variance with St. James's doctrine 
of faith and works, which, in a qualified sense is predicated 
upon the principle of merit; for there can be no merit in obe- 
dience, nor demerit in disobedience, where the individual is 
compelled by fate or predestination, to obey or disobey; be- 
sides, this doctrine violates every attribute of the Deity; his 
absolute decree, deprives him of all power to govern the world, 
and renders nugatory his providence, his mercy, and his jus- 
tice. Such are the puerile doctrines held by most, if not all, 
the Calvinistic sections of the christian church. It cannot 
be necessary to enlarge upon these extracts, to show that Cal- 
vinism when carried out, contains inherently all the essential 
principles of idolatry; and that it is every way calculated to 
raise its admirers to the very achme of pagan splendor! Cal- 
vinism, being thus found both in faith and practice, derogatory 
to the supremacy and spirituality of God, inconsistent with 
the divine nature, and at variance with itself; it is impossible 
that it could have had a divine origin, and must, therefore, 
have been a mere human invention, contrived by its founder 
for political purposes, to gratify his ambition and raise himself 
to regal dignity. 

Truly, the God whom Calvin worshipped, was every way 
as different from the God of the Bible, as the Bible itself is 
from the Koran. Nay, the difference between the two be- 
ings, is as great, as that existing between Mohammed the 
preacher at Mecca, and Mohammed the sovereign prince and 
pontiff of Medina, or Oliver Cromwell the farmer, and 
Cromwell the ^'Lord Protector." But the difference betwixt 
Calvin the preacher, and Cromwell the farmer, was as follows: 
The latter was raised from the cultivation of the soil, to di- 
rect the helm of state, agreeably to known laws and estab- 
lished customs; but the former stood forth the vicegerent of 
God, armed with the sword of persecution to enforce his high 
and heaven-daring commands — he only was the favorite of 
heaven, the only dispenser of its justice, all the rest of the 



'203 HEXPS TO THE STUDY 

world were heretics, while the love of God sharpened the 
sword of persecution in his hands! The goodness, mercy ,, 
and providence of God, were, in his hands, made subservient 
to the establishment of a military despotism, and the wasting 
Upas of error and falsehood, was nurtured and raised to ma- 
turity by the blood of the innocent men he caused to be slain! 

And certainly, the man who can swallow his doctrines and 
conduct, horns foremost or otherwise, must have the throat 
of an ostrich; while the stomach that can digest them, need 
not dread to encounter iron, adamant fish-hooks, and glass- 
bottles! I could sooner believe all the fables in the legend, 
and the Talmud, and the Koran, than that the doctrine of 
Calvinism has any foundation in truth. I will here add the 
views of Thomas Jefferson, a disinterested judge at leasts 
in relation to the doctrines, policy, and ambition of the Pres- 
byterians, as contained in the IV vol. of his works — page 358o 
In a letter to Doctor Cooper, bearing date November 2, 1822, 
Mr. Jefferson says: **Your favor of October 18th, came to hand 
on yesterday. The atmosphere of our country is unquestionably 
charged with a threatening cloud of fanaticism, lighter in 
8ome parts, denser in others, but too heavy in ail. I had no 
idea, however, that in Pennsylvania, the cradle of toleration 
and freedom of religion, it could have arisen to the height 
you describe. This must be owing to the growth of Presby- 
terianism. The blasphemy and absurdity of the five points 
of Calvin, and the impossibility of defending them, render 
their advocates impatient of reasoning, irritable, and prone 
to denunciation of character. ^^ 

Mr. Jeflferson, in a letter to old John Adams, dated April 
11, 1823, writes as follows: "The wish expressed in your 
last favor, that I may continue in life and health, until I be- 
come a Calvinist, at least in 'his exclamation of ^mon dieu! 
jusqu a quandP [My God hpw long! is the French signifi- 
cation] would make me immbrtal. I can never join Calvin 
in addressing his God. He was indeed an atheist, which I 
can never be; or rather his religion was dxmonism. If ever 
man worshipped a false God, he did. The being described 
in his five points, is not the God whom you and I acknowledge 
and adore, the creator and benevolent governor of the world; 
but a daemon of malignant spirit. It would be more pordan- 
able to believe in no God at all, than to blaspheme him by the 
atrocious attributes of Calvin. " In conclusion, as some o^ 
my readers may not fully know what is meant by the '^five 



Of l?RBSBY'rERIANISM. 209 

points" of Calvinism, I will state them. The five points of 
Calvinism are substantially the following: — 

i. God decreed whatsoever comes to pass. 

€. Unconditional election and reprobation. 

3. Christ died only for a part, viz. the elect. 

4. Irresistible grace to bring in the elect. 

5. The impossibility of falling from grace. 



CHAPTER II. 

GENUINE CALVINISM, AS CONTAINED IN THE WESTMINSTER 
CONFESSION OF FAITH. 

This book contains all the peculiar and distinctive doctrines 
of Calvinism, such as may be found in the constitution of the 
Presbyterian churches in the United States, the Saybrook 
Platform, the Assembly's Catechism, and various other stand- 
ard writings of the Presbyterians, Congregationalists, and 
Baptists. I believe it is generally understood, that the Say- 
brook Platform founded in the. year 1708, contains the re^* 
2;iousbelief of theCoa"-reo;ationalists. That the Con2;reo;at' *^' 
af jchurches and clergy of New-England, do believe ' ' , " 
doctrinal articles of the Platform, is too evident to h ^ _| . J^ 

1st. From the circumstance of its being adopter* '/l, "!® * 

mentioned by the churches, and never having ' '^ ^^^ 

since by any public act of the churches. -P^^ 

2nd. From the circumstance that the r .^ , 

-. r 4-u 1 r +• r - ^eneral association 

approvea of the publication of anew e jj^j^^ „f j, 

about 30 years ago. ' 

.3rd. From the circumstance tha* fi^^c^ „^f- ^ r- i ., 
11 r ^' • J I ^ those articles which the 

churches of tnis order may hav g either in ma ' f 

printed in a tract, do uniforml- „ o^„T.^.r fU^ nuscnp , or 
^- . ' z ' ^^ r y convev the same doctrmal 

views as are contained in the ,J]a<-r^».,>. ' t^u ^ r ^ 

, . 1 . ^, . xlattorm. 1 he system of doc- 

tnnes contained in this w.^k, i., a mixture of Calvinism. 
Universahsm, Lnitariam^„,, Arminianism, and Methodism 
And now the Con essio„ of j-^jt,^ ^^^^^j^^^ .^ , J^; 

tntion of the Presbyterian church in the United States of 
vTTSr'"-^"'''"^ ^y "■^'^ S'^'^^'-al assembly of 1821, pub- 
lished 1S24, co'.uainsthe doctrines of the Saybrook Platform 
yrithout even the slightest alieration, except the quotations 
irom script jre are more numerous and are quoted at full 
coJfnciAs^; """ '"^'''''°" °^^ chapter, entitled, "of synods and 
s2 



210 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

As the Presbyterian Confession of Faith is acknowledged 
as the standard, and as the doctrinal system it contains has not 
been abandoned by said church, I will give extracts from the 
same, that the reader may know what the doctrines of this 
church are. The following extracts are taken from the III 
chapter, which is headed, "of God's eternal decrees:" 

"1st. God from all eternity, did by the most wise and holy counsel of 
his own will freely and unchang-eably ordain whatsoever comes to pass; 
yet so as thereby neither is God the author of sin, nor is violence ofiered 
to the will of the creatures, nor is the liberty or contingency of second 
causes taken away, but rather established. 

2d. Although God knows whatsoever may or can come to pass, upon 
Jill supposed conditions, yet hath he not decreed any thing, because he 
foresaw it as future, or as that which would come to pass, upon such con- 
dition. 

3d. By the decree of God for the manifestation of his glory, some men 
and angels are predestinated unto everlasting life, and others fore-ordained 
to everlasting death. 

4th. These angels and men thus predestinated and fore-ordained are 
particularly and unchangeably designed; and their number is so certain 
and definite that it cannot be either increased or diminished. 

.5th. Those of mankind that are predestinated unto life, God, before 
\ ^^e foundation of the world was laid, according to his eternal and immu- 
*' 1e purpose, and the secret council and good pleasure of his will, hath 
tab. ^ jj^ Christ, unto everlasting glory, out of his mere free grace and 
cnost. ithout any foresight of faith or good works, or perseverance in 
love, w iiem, or any other thing in the creature as conditions, or causes 
Cither 01 y thereunto; and all to the praise of his glorious grace. 

. . ^ ' hath appointed the elect unto glory, so hath be, by the 
Gth. As Goa f^^^^ purpose of his will fore-ordained all the means there- 
eternal and most . ^j^^y ^,j^Q ^^.g elected being fallen in Adam, are re- 
r.nto. Wheretore .^ effectually called unto fiiith in Christ by his spirit 
deemed by Christ, ai^ ^^^ justified, adopted, sanctified and kept by his 
workmg m due seaso , ^ ^ salvation. Netthkr are any otheb hedbemei* 
power througi Jaith unw. justified, adopted, sanctified and saved but 

RT cHuisT, effectually callfc. 'J » f 

t5ie elect only. \ ^ i i i j- * i^t. 

. , , i-„.i God was pleased, according to the un- 

7th. The rest o^."?^"^^"^' ..V. whereby he extendeth or withholdeth 

searchable counsel of ^^^ own wil^ ^^ ^^.^ sovereign power over his crea- 

inercv as he Pj^^^^t>/^^'J^^,?i°^.V dishonor and wrath for their sin, to 
lures to pass by, and to ordain them tt 
the praise of his glorious justice. 

That the doctrine taught in Calvin-^s Institutes, in reference 

to the doctrine of election and reprot^ation, is substantially 

hat of the Confession of Faith, is obvious from the foregoing 

extracts. All we ask of Presbyterian pre^rhers is, to s a e 

"octrt.es as they really are That thej ^do not state 

Tern so plainly as Calvin or the Confession ot Fait^i does, I 

ave already shewn, and hope to make still more My mani- 
fV^t The following extracts, taken from this sam^e Confes- 



or PHESBTTERIANISM. 211 

^lon of Faith, and headed <<of effectual calling," are from 
chapter 10: 

"1st. All those whom God hath predestinated unto life, and those 
oxLT he is pleased, in his appointed and accepted time, effectually to call 
by his word and spirit, out of that state of sin and death, in which they 
are by nature, to grace and salvation by Jesus Christ; enlightening their 
minds spiritually and savingly, to understand the things of God — taku)g 
away their heart of stone, and giving unto them an heart of flesh; renewing 
tlieir wills, and by his Almighty power determining them to that which is 
good; and effectually drawing them to Jesus Christ; yet as they come most 
freely, being made willing by his grace. 

2d. This effectual call is of God's free and special grace alone, not 
from any thing at all foreseen in man, who is altogether passive therein, 
until, being quickened and renewed by the holy Spirit, he is thereby 
enabled to answer this call, and to embrace the grace offered and convey- 
ed in it. 

3d. Elect infants dying in infancy, are regenerated and saved by Christ 
thfough the Spirit, who worketh, when, and where, and how he pleaseth. 
So also are all other elect persons, who are incapable of being outwardlr 
called by the ministry of the word. 

4th. Others not elected although they may be called by the ministry of 
the word, and may have some common operations of the* Spirit, yet they 
never truly come to Christ, and therefore cannot be saved; much less caii 
men, not professing the christian religion, be saved in any other way what- 
soever, be they never so diligent to frame their lives according to the light 
of nature, and the law of that religion they do profess; and to assert and 
maintain that they may, is very perniciousj and to be detested." 

Remarks. — The Presbyterian Confession, of Faith, it will 
be seen, teaches that God eternally and unchangeably ordain- 
ed all the murders, profaneness, lying, drunkenness, whor- 
ing, cheating, stealing, &c. which ever did or ever will come 
to pass! Surely he must have ordained all these things if he 
ordained whatsoever comes to pass, for all these things come 
to pass. But it will be said, as it repeatedly has been said, 
that this is misrepresenting their doctrines. Is it not strange 
that they should complain of injustice and misrepresentation, 
when we appeal to their Confession of Faith and other stand- 
ards as expressive of their views? As to the complaint of m- 
jusfice, I cannot understand it! Is it unjust to appeal to arti- 
cles of religion which have been agreed upon and adopted by 
a church, when we wish to ascertain what are the sentiments 
of that church? As to 77iisrepresentatiotiy lam perfectly as- 
tonished at this complaint! I say that those who believe that 
God decreed whatsoever comes to pass, must believe that he 
decreed that sinners should choose to sin, for this comes to 
pass, — that Adam should eat the forbidden fruit, for this came 
to pass — that Cain should kill Abel, for this came to pass — 
that David should murder a man and steal a sheep, for thii 



212 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

came to pass — that Judas should steal money and betray his 
Lord, for this came to pass; that the Jews should falsely accuse 
andshamefully murder Christ, for this came to pass; that some 
men in this life should rob hen-roosts, for this comes to pass 
— that most of the Presbyterian clergy believe one thing and 
preach another, for this comes to pass — that the Methodist 
clergy should take exceptions to their course and expose them, 
for this comes to pass — and so of all other things which come 
to pass, for the simple reason that they do come pass. I think 
this a fair and unavoidable inference, and no misrepresenta- 
tion whatever. I say if God elected a certain number which 
cannot be diminished, those who are of this number, will be 
saved, do what they may. And those who are not of this 
number, but of those whom God eternally passed by and or- 
dained to dishonor and wrath, in his alleged fury and ven- 
geance, for whom Christ did notdie, and \v\\o ^yq, note ffeciii- 
ally called, will not be saved do what they may. I do not 
consider this a misrepresentation, but a fair and legitimate con- 
clusion. If this view of the Calvinian system: be a correct 
one, is it not strange that those who believe that the number 
of the elect^'cannot be increased,'' should nevertheless ap^ 
pear so anxious to send missionaries among the heathen and 
elsev^here? What good can missionaries do, if this doctrine 
be true? They cannot increase the number of the elect, 
nor can they dimimsh the number of the reprobates, nor can 
the Devil himself, with all his arts diminish the number of 
the elect, for it ^'cannot be diyninished,^^ Of what service 
then can missionaries be, if the destinies of all men are al- 
ready unchangeably fixed in heaven or hell? And what good 
will preaching do here at home? Reader, think of these 
things; and if your eyes have not been blinded by the dust of 
prejudice, you will soon see things in a different light. 

As we have no religious test in this country, every man has 
a perfect right to adopt such views of the plan of salvation as 
he may choose, and certainly we have no objection to people 
thinking and choosing for themselves; but it does not com- 
port with honesty, much less with ministerial integrity, 
to dissemble with the public, and by artifice and clerical trick- 
ery, conceal our real sentiments, professing one thing while 
we industriously circulate another, or believing one thing and 
presching another. Truth needs no such manoeuvres to sus- 
tain it. In this respect, there is but too striking a resem- 
blance between the conduct of the Presbyterian clergy, and 
the game ^sop's bat played off upon the birds and tlie beasts! 
—It is becoming "all things to pill rijen.'^ 



or PRESBYTERIAN ISM. dlS 



CHAPTER III. 

CALVINISM, AS CONTAINED IN THE LARGER AND SHORTER 
CATECHISMS OF THE PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH. 

Besides the extracts already made, I could conveniently 
add, any number of like tenor and import, frora Calvinistic 
writers from the days of John Calvin to the present time. 
But more need not be given to lead the reader to a correct un- 
derstanding and statement of the odious doctrine oi absolute 
unconditional predestination; which, as I have shewn, in- 
cludes all events from the beginning of time, and a particular 
personal predestination to everlasting life, and a particular 
personal predestination to everlasting death. However, 
lest it should be said, that there are no more such doctrines, 
extant, I must be permitted to add a few inglorious para- 
graphs from the larger and shorter catechisms of the Presby- 
terian church. The following are the extracts: 

Q. "67. What is effectual calling? 

A. Effectual calling: is the work of God's almighty power and grace, 
whereby (out of his free and especial love to his electa and from nothing 
in them moving him thereunto) he doth in his accepted time invite and 
draw them to Jesus Christ, by his word and Spirit: savingly enlightening 
their minds, renewing- and powerfully determining their wills, so as they 
(although in themselves dead in sin) are hereby made willing and able, 
freely to answer his call, and to accept and embrace the grace offered 
and conveyed thei-ein." Larger Catechism. < 

Q. 68. *'Are the elect only effectually called? 

A. All the elect, and thei/ only are effectually called; although others 
mav be and often are outwardly called by the ministry of the word, and 
i have some common operations of the Spirit, who for their wilful neglect 
, and contempt of the grace offered to them, being justly left in their unbe- 
lief, do never truly come to Jesus Christ." lb. 

Q. 13. "What hath God especially decreed concerning angels and 
men?* 

A. God, by an eternal and immutable decree, out of his mere love, fer- 
tile praise of his glorious grace, to be manifested in due time, hath elected 
some angels to glory; and in Christ, hath chosen some men to eternal life, 
and the means thereof; and also, according to his sovereign power, and the 
unsearchable counsel of his own will haXh passed by. and fore-ordained the 
jrest to dishonor and wrath, to be for their sin inflicted, to the praise of the 
iglory of his justice." lb. 

Q. 31. "With whom was the covenant of grace made!* 

A. The covenant of grace was made with Christ as the second Adam, 

land in him with all the elect as his seed." Jb. 

Q. 59. "Who are made partakers of redemption through Christ^ 

A. Redemption is applied and effectually communicated, to all those 

for whom Christ hath purchased it; who are in time by the Holy Ghost en- 
bled to believe in Christ according to the gospel. " fb. 



214 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

Q. 20. *'Dld God leave all mankind to perish in the estate of sin and 
misery^ 

A. God» having" out of his mere good pleasure, from all eternitVy 
elected some to everlasting" life, did enter into a covenant of grace, to de- 
liver them out of the estate of sin and misery, and to bring them into an 
estate of salvation by a Redeemer." Shorter Catechism. 

Q. 21. "Who is the Redeemer of God's elect? 

A. The only Redeemer of God's elect is the Lord Jesus Christ." Ib^ 

Remarks. — As obnoxious in their nature, and ruinous in 
their tendency, as are the doctrines of these catechisms, all 
parents who have their children baptized by Presbyterian 
ministers, are required to teach them to the poor little inno- 
cent creatures! What! teach little children a lie, and to 
cherish and believe a lie! What! teach a child that by the 
decree of election, a certain and definite portion of mankind 
are particularly predestinated to life — that this election is un- 
conditional, without ^'any foresight of faith or good works, 
or perseverance or any other thing" — that by the decree of re- 
probation a certain and definite portion of mankind are par- 
ticularly predestinated to dishonor and wrath — and that this 
predestination is for the praise of God's most glorious justice! 
Reader, sooner teach your child that there is no God at all, 
than that there is such an atrocious God in existence, as the 
one described in these catechisms. 

Once more: As false and unscriptural as are the above quo- 
tations, and also, all those quotations from the Confession of 
Faith, every ordained minister in the Presbyterian church, 
is nevertheless solemnly sworn, before God and the members 
of Presbytery, to both believe and preach them. By this 
solemn oath, I mean their oath of ordination: and this oath is 
as binding, if not more so, as any ever administered in a court 
of justice. But to the law and to the testimony. In the 
<^Form of Government," chapter XV, page 378, it is stated 
that ^*when the day appointed for ordination is come," 
among other questions proposed to the candidate for orders^ 
are the following: — 

*^Do you sincerely receive and adopt the Confession of 
Faith of this church, as containing the system of doctrine 
taught in the Holy Scriptures? 

Bo you approve of the government and discipline of the 
Presbyterian church (which require the zealous and faithful 
maintainance of its doctrines) in these United States? 

Do you promise subjection to your brethren in the Lord?" 

When a Methodist preacher receives elders' orders, he is 
asked the following question among others^ in the presence 



i 



OF PRESBTTEHIANISM. 215 

©f God and the whole congregation, by the bishop who or- 
dains him: 

"Will you be ready with all faithful diligence, to banish 
and drive away all erroneous and strange doctrines contrary 
to God's word?'' 

Neither a Methodist nor a Presbyterian minister, who has 
answered the above questions at his ordination, can, without 
an obvious dereliction of duty — alias false swearing, preach 
any other doctrine than that which is contained in the articles 
of his own ehurch, nor administer any other discipline than 
that which is recognized in the government of that church. 
For my own part, I have ever felt conscientious in this matter. 
I have been accustomed to preach controversy, or "with all 
faithful diligence, to banish and drive away all erroneous and 
strange doctrines;" and I never expect to preach a sermon 
while I live, wholly free from controversy. I have too much 
regard for my ordination oath, ever to cease opposing error. 
And I confess, I think very little of a Methodist preacher, 
who, for the sake of popiUarity, or promotion in some way, 
will either publicly or privately rail out against controversy, 
and plead up for union. And when an Ordained M(i{\\o^h\. 
preacher advances any doctrine contrary to the known and 
established doctrines of the Methodist Episcopal church, I 
unhesitatingly affirm, he is guilty of false swearing. So, 
when an ordained Presbyterian preacher advances any other 
doctrine than that of the Confession of Faith, and the other 
standard wriHngs of his church, I say he is guilty of false 
swearing. That most of the Presbyterian ministers in Ten- 
nessee, are guilty of this species ot perjury, will not be 
doubted by any who have heard them preach, and since read 
and examined the foregoing extracts. But it is time to bring 
this chapter to a close. If it has been lengthened out beyond 
what either my friends or enemies have desired, they will find 
an apology in the goodness of the cause. 



CHAPTER IV. 

MOPKINSIAN CALVINISM, AS CONTAINED IN DOCTOR HOPElNs's 
SERMONS, AND SYSTEM OF DIVINITY. 

Could the writer, whose name is placed at the head of this 
chapter, reconcile his theory, which he supposes proclaims 
the unwillingness of God to save every sinner in the uni- 



H6 ME11?S To THE STtJDY 

Verse, with that part of his doctrine which declares the et^ 
istence of an eternal decree which fixes, unchangeably, a de- 
finite portion of the human family to an eternal hell, I would 
then hail him, and shake hands with him, in the open field oi 
gospel grace, which contains 

* 'Enough for all, enough for each 

Enough for evermore." 

But while he remains contented, among the rocks and shoals 

of Calvinistic decrees, or of Hopkinsian inabilities, I for one, 

can never give him the right hand of doctrinal fellowship^ 

The founder of the Hopkinsian system, was the Rev. Sam- 
uel Hopkins, D. D. an eminent American divine, who flour- 
iehed about a half a century ago, and who, in his sermons and 
other writings, has made several additions to the sentiments 
first advanced by the celebrated Jonathan Edwards^ late 
president of New Jersey College. 

The Hopkinsians warmly contend for the doetrine of de- 
crees, of particular election, total deprsvitv, the final uncon- 
ditional perseverance of the saints, &c. ; and therefore, claim 
it as their just due, to use the language of Buck, <'since the 
world will make distinctions, to be called Hopkinsian Cat- 
innists, ^' For a more enlarged view oi this system, I would 
c-ke Adams's View of all Religions, Hopkins on Holiness^ 
Edwards on the Will, Wests'' $ Essay on Moral Agency^ 
and Springes Nature of Deity. 

And when the foregoing Works are examined, they will 
be found to agree, at Ipast in every material respect, with 
Calvin's Institutes, Gill's Cause of Truth, Fuller's Cal- 
vinistic System, Toplady's Works, and the Assembly^^ 
Catechism. 

Old fashioned Calvinists, however, have demurred against 
several of the leading points of doctrine in Hopkins's system, 
and a long and warm controversy was occasioned by them in 
1810. Those who feel interested in the controversy, may 
be fully gratified by examining Dr. Ely's ^^contrast between 
Calvinism and Hopkinsianism.'' In bringing to view the 
opinions of this man Hopkins, I will commence with ex- 
tracts from a volume of his sermons, in which the reader will 
perceive, he represents God as the efficient cause of sin. The 
following brief extracts will be sufficient: 

**Every thing which is properly an effect, has its foundation in the pur- 
pose or decree of God, as its original cause, without which it could riot 
take place. And every such effect is fixed and made sure of existence 
by the Divine decree, and infallibly connected with it." — Hopkins's Ser- 
nums, vol. \ p. 85, " 



OF PRESBTTERIANISM. 217 

**The decrees of God are unchang-eable; they are fixed from eternity, 
and cannot be altered, in any degree, or with respect to any thing-, event 
or circumstance." lb' vol. 1, p. 86. 

*'For the fiiturition or futurity of all things depends upon the decrees 
of God; and by these every created existence and every event, with all 
their circumstances, are fixed and made certain, and in consequence of 
their being- decreed, the}^ are the objects of foreknowledge, for they 
could not be known to be future, imless they were so, and they were 
made so by the Divine decree, and nothing else." lb. vol. 1 p. 88. 

"God has foreordained whatsoever comes to pass, and with his hand is 
executing his own wise purposes, in his governing providence, ordering 
and directing all the actions of men, even the most sinful sls well as others, 
for his own glory and the general good, and his hand is to be seen in ev- 
ery event a;id in every action of man as really as if he was the only 
agent in the universe. lb. vol. I, p. 142. 

**God has foreordained all the moral evil that does take place; and is in 
such a sense and so far the origin and cause of it, tliat He is said to bring 
it to pass by his own agency. Jb. vol. I, p. 161. 

I will now direct the reader's attention to the Doctors sy.«?- 
tem of divinity, now lying before me. The Doctor spends 
about ninety octavo pages of the first volume, in speaking of 
the divinity of the scriptures, the attributes of God, the trin- 
ity of persons in the God-head, &c. He next enters on the 
* "DECREES of God," and spends upwards of one hundred 
pages in trying to prove that God is the 07\qin and cause of 
all events, both good dJi^S. evil, that ever did, or ever will take 
place ! 

To notice all the Doctor has said, would not only be un- * 
profitable to my readers, but likewise incompatible with the 
brevity of my design; I shall therefore, only notice the most 
prominent points. In order to bring the Doctor and his ten- 
ets fully before the reader, I shall give the following quota- 
tions from the first volume, which are introduced after some 
preliminary remarks: — 

"Indeed, every thing which is properly an effect, has its foundation in 
the purpose or decree of God, as its original cause, witliout which it 
could not have taken place. And every such effect is fixed and made 
sure of existence by the divine decrees and infallibly connected with it. 

"The assembly of divines, in their short catechisms, hj^ve given a con- 
cise description of the decree of God, which is both rational and agreea- 
ble to the holy scriptures; viz: The decrees of God are his eternal pur- 
pose, according to the counsel of his own will whereby for his own glory 
he hath foreordained wliatsoever comes to pass." page 8i. ,,, 

Again, page 85 he says, "If God's knowing all his works from etisrnity 
does not mean his purpose concerning them, it necessarily implies this; 
for how could he know what he would do if he had no will or purpose 
to do'" 

He goes on to say, "It may be of some importance to observe here, that 
there is a distinction and difference between the decree of God, and his 
foreknowledge, as the words are commonly used. Divine foreknovvl- 
T 



518 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

edge is God's foreseeing future existence and events, and knowing from 
eternity what would take place in all futurity, to eternity, or without end. 
This foreknowledge is not only to be distinguished from the decree, but 
must be considered as in order of nature, consequent upon the determin- 
ation and purpose of God, and dependent upon it." page 85. 

*'Nothing can be the object of the divine foreknowledge, which is not 
jixtd as certainly future." page 95. 

From the foregoing extracts, the reader will perceive that 
the Doctor infers the necessity of events from their certain- 
ty, and the decrees of God, from his foreknowledge, than 
which nothing can be more preposterous. Indeed, the fore- 
knowledge and decrees of God, is the basis of his whole sys- 
tem. There is not a more intricate point in polemic divinity 
than this. And really, if Hopkins^s views of this sub- 
ject be correct, God's foreknowledge is by no means perfect. 
For an event may as certainly take place by the agency of 
man, as it could by divine agency, and, if God's knowledge 
hQ pe7fect, he can as certainly see it. 

The Doctor having, as he supposed, established the cor- 
rectness of his position, in relation to God's eternal decrees^ 
proceeds to speak of their end, iathe following manner: — 

"As the decrees of God are most wise, this necessarily supposes some 
end in view, and that which is best, the most excellent, important, and 
desirable that can be: for wisdom consists in proposing and pursuing 
such an end, in ways and by means in the best manner adapted to accom- 
plish that end." page 89. 
Again 5 

"If it be inquired, what that best, most important, and desirable end 
can be, which can be proposed by infinite wisdom? The answer must be, 
that God himself, or that which respects him, is the end of his decrees and 
works." page 90. 

**God makes himself his end, in his decrees and works, in being pleas- 
ed with the exercise and expression, exhibition and display of his own in- 
finite perfection and excellence." Page 81. "This exhibition and 

display of the divine perfections, necessarily implies, and involves, as es- 
sential to it, the communication of his own holiness, and happhiess to the 
greatest possible degree; which consists in effecting or producing the 
greatest possible moral excellence and felicity in his creation, or by his 
works. This consists in the highest possible good or happiness in crea- 
tures, whose capacities, circumstances, and their number, and all other 
things, circumstances and events are contrived and adapted in the best 
manner to answer this end." lb. 
Once more; 

"If he be pleased with the greatest possible exercise, communication, 
And exhibition of his goodness, he must be pleased with the happiness of 
creatures, and the greatest possible happiness of the creation, because 
the former so involves the latter, that they cannot be separated; and may 
be considered as one and the same thing." Page 91-2. 

Having so freely animadverted on the Doctor's notions of 



OF presbyterianism; 219 

eternal decrees and foreknowledge, I shall close my extracts, 
by bringing forward the three following sentences: — 

(Tlr "GOD WAS THE AUTHOR, ORIGIN, AND POSITIVE CAUSE 
OF ADAM'S SIN, THIS CAN BE PROVED, AND MAY BE ASSERT- 
ED, AS A MOST EVIDENT TRUTH. BUT IN CAUSING OR ORI- 
GINATING SIN, THERE IS NO SIN." J^ 

0:J>«GOD MOVES, EXCITES, AND STIRS UP MEN TO DO 
THAT WHICH IS SINFUL; AND DECEIVES, BLINDS, HARDENS, 
AND PUTS SIN INTO THE HEART, BY A POSITIVE CREATIVE 
INFLUENCE." J^ 

(TjT *«THUS DOES GOD FORM THE CHARACTER OF THOSE 
WHO WERE PROM ETERNITY PREDESTINATED TO DA MNA- 
TION; AND THUS BY HIS PROVIDENCE HE EXECUTES HIS 
DECREE OF REPROBATION." ^ 

As some of my readers may desire to know more fully, 
what is the doctrinal system held by the Hopldnsians, I will 
herewith submit a brief summary of the whole, as set forth 
in Watson's Biblical and Theological Dictionary, published 
for the Methodist Episcopal Church, at the Conference Office 
in New York; a work too, which has been compiled from the 
best sources ancient and modern, and which is superior to 
any dictionary of the kind in existence. But it is not ne- 
ijessary for me to say any thing in commendation of this 
work. 

The following is a summary of the distinguishing tenets of 
the Hopkinsians: — 

1. That all true virtue or real holiness consists in disinter- 
ested benevolence. 2. That all sin consists in selfishness. 
2. That there are no promises of regenerating grace made to the 
actions of the unregenerate. 4. That the impotency of sin- 
ners, with regard to believing in Christ, is not natural but 
Tnoral. 5. That in order to faith in Christ, a sinner must 
approve in his heart of the divine conduct, even though God 
should cast him off forever. 6. That the infinitely and ho- 
ly God has exerted his omnipotent power, in such a way as 
he purposed should be followed with the existence and en- 
trance of moral evil in the system. 7. That the intro- 
duction of SIN is, upon the whole, for \hQ general good. 8. 
That repentance is before faith in Christ. 9. That Adam's 
^ct, in eating the forbidden fruit, was not the cause, but on- 
ly the occasion of his posterity being sinners. 10. That 
though believers are justified through Christ's righteousness, 
yet his righteousness is not directly transferred to them. 11. 
That men are totally depraved until regeneration. 12. The 



220 • HELPS TO THE STUDY 

Hopkinskns warmly advocate the doctrine of eternal de- 
crees, and of particular election and reprobation. 

Remarks. — Upon the whole, I may say, that Dr. Hop- 
kins' theory appears to be an attempt to unite some points of 
mystic theology with the system of Calvinism commonly re- 
ceived, and that where it differs from the latter, it obviates no 
difficulty whatever. Finally, the doctrine of Hopkinsian 
Calvinism, makes God the author of sin. 2. It destroys the 
free agency, and of course the accountabih'ty of man. 3. It 
arrays God's secret decrees against his written word. 4. In 
close connexion with the foregoing objection, it may be add- 
ed, that this doctrine mars, if it does not destroy, the moral 
attributes of God. 5. It puts a plea into the mouth of sin- 
ners to justify themselves in their sins, and leads to Univer- 
salism and infidelity. 6. The evils done to the church be- 
cause of the belief, and consequent influence of this doctrine, 
are incalculable. 

A Hopkinsian believes that the elect will certainly be 
saved, and go hnmediately to heaven when they die, — and 
every believer in Calvinism thinks himself, to be one of the 
elect. Now, a Calvinistic priest, in whom a gentleman in 
New-Jersey, a few years ago, put confidence to write his will, 
and who was to receive a legacy out of the gentleman's estate, 
wrote eleven hundred dollars, instead of one hundred!!! 
Also, a Calvinistic lawyer, who was himself to receive a 
legacy from this same man's estate, was afterwards found to 
have been conniving and assisting his brother preacher in this 
work. Well, when the man was dead, and the will produced, 
it being so differently written from what the testator had ever 
talked of among his friends, and apprehending that the fraud 
was coming to light — this Calvinistic priest (one of the elect 
of God, in his own estimation, being strong in the faith) 
committed suicide, thereby exchanging an earthly for a hea- 
venly inheritance! And the lawyer too, being of the same 
faith and hearing what his minister had done, followed his 
example! This is getting out of a scrape Calvinistic ally. 
And this is what Calvinism leads to. And what is to prevent 
any Calvinist, strong in the faith, from giving glory to God 
in this way? 



I 



OF PRESBTTEKIANISM. 221 



CHAPTER V. 

HOPKINSIAN CALVINISM, AS SET FORTH IN A WORK CALLED 
THE "seven CONVERSATIONS BETWEEN ATHANASIUS AND 
DOCILIS, ON THEOLOGICAL SUBJECTS." 

The work bearing the above title, was written by His Ho- 
liness, the Right Reverend Isaac Anderson; and, to use his 
own words, has, because of ^'the calls for- a second edition,'^ 
having been "so numerous, and from sources so respectable," 
been presented to the public a second time. Soon after the 
first edition of these Conversations had made its appearance, 
which was in 1S21, it was answered at length, and in a mas- 
terly manner, by the Rev. Robert Paine of the Methodist 
Episcopal church,' in a pamphlet entitled *^Seven Conversa- 
tions between Quero and ^dthanasius.^^ Mr. Paine's 
pamphlet, every candid reader will acknowledge, is a com- 
plete refutation of the views and sentiments oi Athanasius, 
But still, Athanasius^ in his preface to the scond edition of 
this mighty work, assigns as a ''rational''^ reason for not 
noticing Mr. P's publication, that ^^the patrons of this second 
edition, think the cause of truth does not demand that it 
should be noticed." Indeed! This is in perfect accordance 
with the manner in which Calvinistic writers answer the 
arguments of their Arminian competitors. They affect to 
treat them with silent contempt ! A masterly argument this ! 
what, logical inflexibility is embodied in this argument! 
And although Mr. P. was then considered a man of talents 
and learning, and has since been elected president of La 
Grange college in Alabama, yet, this pious old doctor of 
divinity calls him a ^^woidd-he author,^' and charges him with 
^^weakness, folly and self-conceit!" Finally, Athanasius 
charges his clerical brother Quero, by way of interroga- 
tory, with the want of an "honest and upright heart and in- 
tentions." Still, Athanasius says, ^^Quero flies in a great 
rage!" Upon the whole, I can but exclaim as did one of 
old, '-Lord, luhcU is manP'' But to the work in hand. 
'The work which I am now reviewing, and the most noxious 
parts of which I propose herewith to exhibit, is founded, 
principally, on the four following propositions; — 
^'I. God a moral governor. 

II. Man AMORAL AGENT. 

III. God THE EFFICIENT CAUSE. 

t2 



^2 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

IV. Man a passive recipient, or, man a creature 

CAPABLE OF BEING ACTED UPON BY ANOTHER AGENT.'' 

Athanasius^ in sustaining the above propositions, uses a 
great deal of sophistry, a quantity of fanaticism, and much 
of the twang common to writers of his order, all well spiced 
with Hopkinsian metaphysics. In a w^ord, the whole work 
is completely shrouded in the mantle of metaphysical ob- 
scurity. However, had I time and room, I could soon have 
this whole pamphlet in the air — dangling like the late Comet, 
after Davy Crockett's operation on it — headless and tailless — 
a scattered constellation of decapitated Jack O'lantern ! The 
following are the extracts which I have selected from this 
work: 

* 'But that power which secures saints from fallings is exerted on saints 
as passive recipients. And the doctrine of final perseverance belongs to 
the two last propositions; namely, that God is an efficient cause, and man is 
a passive recipient:, and not the two first, God acts on the saint as a pas- 
sive recipient, so as to make it certainy that he will persevere as a moral 
ag'ent in holiness. " Page 18. 

^Kitha. Docilis, in the close of the last conversation you said, that 772073 
had natural power to he perfectly holy, without divine influence. The sub- 
ject to which this leads is important. 

*^Doc. I know not with what subjects it may be connected; but the 
sentiment seems to flow from the principles about which we had conversed 
and settled." P. 26. 

^^Mha. Exactly so. Then the atonement is the ground on which offers 
are made; and the obedience of Christ unto death, the ground of saving 
or renewing influence. Let me now ask, may not all the blessings pro- 
cured by the atonement, be ofl^ered and pressed on man as a moral agent; 
and yet 710 saving influence he exerted on /tt7w, inclining him to accept-* 
Doc. If I attempt to deny this, every day's experience would rise up 
and contradict me." P., 28. 

^'Jtha. You have answered so well, you now may tell me what is hre- 
shtihle grace . 

Doc. Athanasius, I have a sort of glimmtring light on that subject, but 
would rather hear you answer. 

JUfia. I will then try to make it plain. God designs to turn a sinner to 
holiness; All light and motive addressed to him as a moral agent, fail. 
God then operates on him as a passive recipient, with almighty energt, 
the infallihle consequence of which is, the man turns, and this is irre- 
sistible grace, and is the same thing, that is called special grace." ^ P. 29. 

^^Mha. That the Father sent the Son and commanded him, is the re- 
peated language of the Bible. Then, the Father's right to command, 
and the obligation of the Son to ohey, must arise out of mutual agreement^ 
And there is no way to escape this argument but by denying the equality 
of the persons in the Godhead, or by asserting, that among equals, one 
may have an inherent right to command another. 

Boc. Have you any other proof that a covenant existed /roTn all eternity 
between the sacred persons of Jehovah respecting man's redemption? 

Atha. There are several other proofs; 1st. Works performed by a per- 
son, or sufferings endured, which were not required or commanded, 
cannot entitle him who performed the work, or endured the suff"erings, to 



OF PRESS YTERIANISM. 223 

a reward. No man feels bound to reward his neig-hbor for works which 
he did not employ him to do, or for sufferings which he did not require 
him to undertake. But the works and sufferings of the Redeemer are 
rewarded by the Father, and a reward was promised, &c. 

Then, the works and sufferings of Jesus Christ are such as he had 
covenanted to perform and endure, and such as the Father had covenanted 
to reward. 

2nd , The persons of Jehovah, antecedent to the covenant, would have 
had an equal claim to the creatures of their creative power. But if the 
Bible plainly teaches that one sacred person has a right to give or with- 
hold any part of creation, the right must be founded on agreement or cove- 
nant. The Father did give to the Son aright to exercise authority over 
all things, and gave him a poktion of the htjmajt familt as a bewakd." 
P. 30. 

'*Then look at the subject in every light that the scriptures represent it*, 
we are necessarily led to the conclusion, that an ETERNAL COVENANT 
existed between the sacred persons of the Godhead respecting man's 
redemption." P. 31. 

^'Doc. Does the agency of God on man, as passive recipient, depend 
on the consent of man as moral agent; so that God cannot operate on the 
man, unless the man, as moral agent, first consent ttiat God should so 
operate on him as a passive recipient? The reason I ask this question is, 
I heard a pubhc teacher say, (a Methodist, and he said the truth) God 
never would regenerate a man, unless the man first agreed to be regen- 
erated. ' 

*'Jtha. The cause and reason of man willing, is, because God, as effi- 
cient caitse, operates on him us passive recipient, and works in him to will 
and to do. 

So that your teacher put the effect before the cause. Were his doc- 
trine true, no sinner ever would be converted!.'.' God must make hira 
willing in a day of his power; and this is done by a divine injiuence on him 
as a passive recipient; whicli operation is previous to any right moral exer- 
cises in the will of man as a moral agent." P. 33. 

*'Atha. What is sin? 

Doc. It is a transgression of the law of God. 

.itha. Yes, and the law of God is fulfilled by love. Then the opposi- 
tion to love is enmity. Love is the voluntary exercise of a moral agent; of 
course, enmity is also the exercise of a moral agent. Then, I ask, can sin 
belong to man as a passive recipient? 

Doc. Sin cannot consist in a mere capacity to be acted on by some other 
agent; for this is no transgression of a law; but sin must be in the acts of 
an active creature, transgressing or violating some law. 

J^tJia. May not a creature, as soon as it has an idea and a voluntary exer^ 
else, be a sinner? 

Doc. It would seem so! 

Atha. But can a soul exist without being a moral agentl 

Doc. I think not!!!" P. 33, 34. 

Remarks. — The above contradictory questions and answers, 
end my quotations from the Seven Conversations. I would, 
at any time, prefer, for the man of my counsel, the Koran, 
communicated to Mohammed by the angel Gabriel, to that of 
the Seven Conversations. 

And, there is more sound doctrine and scriptural divinity, ' 



224 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

inthefollowlngextract, taken from the second chapter of Sale's 
translation of theKoran, than thereismthis whole work: *^God, 
there isno God buthe; the living, theself-existing: neither slum- 
ber nor sleep seizeth him; to him belongeth whatsoever is in hea- 
ven, and on earth. Who is he that can intercede with him, but 
through his goodness and good pleasure! He knoweth that 
which is past, and that which is to come unto them, and they 
shall not comprehend any thing of his knowledge, but so far 
as he pleaseth. His throne is extended over heaven and earth, 
and the preservation of both is no burthen to him. He is 
the high, the mighty God. Let there be no violence in reli- 
gion. To God belongeth the east and the west; therefore 
whithersoever ye turn yourselves to pray, there is the face of 
Qod; for God is ormiipresent and omniscient.''^ 

Inasmuch as the sentiment that '^man has natural power to 
be perfectly holy, without divine influence,'^ is a prevailing 
one, among all Hopkinsian Calvinists, it deserves a passing 
notice at least. 

That man has natural ability, to not only work out his 
salvation, but also to break the decrees of God, and that 
he could and would do all this, were he not prevented by an 
invincible moral inability, is a well digested article of faith, 
with all thorough going Hopkinsians. Now, to say that a 
person has natural ability to do a moral act, and yet that he 
has no moral abilit}^ to do it, is a bare-faced contradiction. A 
natural ability to do a moral act, differs not, according to my 
apprehension, from a moral ability; but if the advocates for 
natural ability d^ndi mo7Ydinability claim thdit eyes consti- 
tute an ability to see without light, and ears to hear without 
sound, 1 for one, contend not, but invite all such to make the 
experiment! If man has a natural ability to obtain justifica- 
tion by a compliance with the law given to our first parents, 
or the moral law, I see no necessity of a Saviour, or of an 
atonement. 

It is admitted by the Hopkinsians, who hold this doctrine, 
that when man fell, he lost the image of God. They also ad- 
mit that love to God is not natural to man, but that he is "bora 
like the wild ass's colt," and that as soon as he is born, he 
wanders off, ''speaking lies.'' Where then, I would ask, 
and ask it with a pity too, for these deluded creatures, is man's 
natural ability to love and obey God? If it be admitted that 
man, in consequence of the fall, comes into the world desti- 
tute of the image of God, and has need to be born again be- 
fore he can love God, it must follow, in my humble concep- 
tion, that he has no natural ability to do the works of the law, 



OF PRESBTTERIANISM. 225 

nor natural ability, independently of the grace of God, to 
believe to the saving of the soul. But can he thus believe? 
No: no more than the vilest insect that crawls upon the face 
of the earth. And, however pleasing this doctrine may be to 
human vanity, it is contrary to scripture, reason, and experi- 
ence. But what are man's powers of free volition and action? 
Why, first, a man can go so far, and do all that is necessary 
for the purposes of life, in providing for both himself and 
family. So in like manner, a man can exercise his intel- 
lectual powers, in reasoning, willing, judging, loving hating, 
choosing, refusing, &c.; and so with divine assistance, he can 
go so far as to work out his own salvation. 

Milton expresses this sentiment very beautifully: 

-Ingrate! he (Adam) had of me 



All he could have; I made him just and rig-ht. 
Sufficient to have stood, though free to fall.' 



CHAPTER VI. 

JL BRIEF NOTICE OF REV. ABEL PEARSOn's ^ ^ANALYSIS OF THE 
PRINCIPLES OF THE DIVINE GOVERNMENT, IN A SERIES OF 
CONVERSATIONS, &C.'' 

This ever to be detestable book, consists of upwards of four 
hundred octavo pages, printed on bad paper, with pale ink, 
and indifferent type; and is written in the form of a dialogue, 
being a series of conversations between A. P. and N. P., on 
almost all the different points in theology. 

The author of this work, is an aged minister of the Hop- 
kinsian order, and is a compound of coarse wit, odd looks, 
queer gestures, blunt manners, Hopkinsian metaphysics, Cal- 
vinian prejudices, and Antinomian bigotry. I have careful- 
ly examined this work, and therefore conclude in the words 
of Lord Bacon, that I have ^'sorted the prophecy with the 
event fulfilling the same;" and although, it contains some 
sentiments of great beauty, in that part entitled "A disserta- 
tion on the prophecies," much of it in a moral point of view 
is disgustingly licentious, and some parts of it are ridiculous- 
ly absurd. Already has this Analysis, like the lying proph- 
ets of Samaria, widely diffused its false doctrines, leading 
many poor souls into error. The work, however, is very 
much extolled by several distinguished Presbyterian minis- 
ters,- and it is especially recommended by the sovereign pen- 



%26 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

tiff of Maryville; who is, in the mean time, the expounder 
of Mr. Pearson's faith, his supreme legislator and judge, in 
a qualified sense, as well as the commander-in-chief of the 
Hopkinsian forces, in East Tennessee! To the author of the 
Analysis I would say, as did our Savior to the unbelieving 
Jews: ^^ Search the sc7'iptures, for in them ye think ye 
have eternal life; and they are they which testify of me." 
This language would never have been used by Christ, if, for 
an explanation of the prophecies, it had been necessary to 
wander into the mists of fabulous mythology, or the enigmat- 
ical allegories of Egyptian hieroglyphics; or if, to strength- 
en the faith or confirm the hopes of the humble enquirer, it 
had been necessary, for an explanation of the gospel, to dive 
or plunge into the subtleties of the Platonic or the Aristota- 
lian philosophy, or, if to seek for the influence of the Holy 
Spirit to form the heart anew, it had been necessary to study 
the metaphysics of Hopkinsian theology. And had Mr. 
Pearson rejected all foreign auxiliaries, and had he explained 
upon principles, simply scriptural, a portion of the prophe- 
cies, or the doctrines of the gospel; why, then, his book 
woilld have been less noxious, and more in unison with the 
character of God, and the dictates of common sense. How- 
ever, the reader will not regard me as holding out the idea, 
that Mr. Pearson, in this work, has evinced to the world, that 
he is a man of critical research, or of profound learning: — 
this is not my opinion. It is very desirable that an aitthor 
should unite in his person those high qualifications, natural 
and acquired, which have in all ages been the lot of those 
who have attained eminence in the art of book-making, and 
which have placed it among those pursuits that are at once 
the cause and the effect of advanced improvement in society. 
But alas! nine-tenths of the writers 2in<^ preachers oi this de- 
nomination, are almost as destitute of these qualifications, as 
they are ignorant of constitutional and national law, and of 
infantry and artillery tactics! Talk to one half of them 
about history, mythology philosophy, rhetoric, natural histo- 
ry, botany, astronomy, chemistry, mental and moral philoso- 
phy, ancient and modern geography, with the use of the 
globes, drawing maps, &c,, and you will find them as dumb 
as so many frogs in dog-days! Mr. Pearson's description of 
the new birth, is among the most wild and visionary things I 
have ever seen. The following are his views of this all-im- 
portant subject: 

''N. Now suppose this anxious enquirer reply, just in this place: I do. 



OF PRESBTTERIAXISM. 227 

ttot know whether I have done that thing or not; but this I do know, I have 
honestly tried to do it, yet things did not take place with me as I ex- 
pected afterwards. And on this account he feels much doubt and uncer- 
tainty. 

"A. I should like such an answer much better than a positive assurance 
that he had done the very thing in particular. 

**N. For what reason? 

**A. Because, I know if he do that very thing, he will/ec/ disappoinfed, 
things will not turn up as he expected, for it would be strange that an 
impenitent, should know beforehand, how a penitent should act and feel. 

**N, Is it likely that such an one, at this time, just after he has done 
that particular thing, will feel that he has any Christianity? 

"A. NO; for things not taking place with him according to his former 
expectations, his feelings of disappointment, with more humiliating views 
of himself on account of his crimes, may make him feel as if he were a 

WORSK SINNEH, AND FURTHER FROltt BEING A ChRISTIAS than hc CVCr 

thought he was before." Page 219. 

Remarks. — Who would ever have thought of assigning as 
evidence oi a man's conversion, his bad feelings, his doubts, 
and his utter want of assurance? The poor old man has prov- 
en to all who enjoy religion, that he himself, knows nothing 
about it. And let all the people say, "pity the sorrows of a 
poor old man!" Men whose views, of the necessary quali- 
fications for heaven, are as unseriptural and wild, as are those 
of Mr. Pearson, have no more business preaching, in my 
humble coneeption, than have the cadets of the United States' 
military academy. And I confess, that if I were enquiring 
the way to Zion, I should as soon consult the most approved 
geographical and topographical maps of the States of Europe, 
as such men. Agreeably to Mr. Pearson's easy scheme, a 
man may have the peace that the world knoweth not, the 
peace of God passing all understanding, and the love of God 
«hed abroad in his heart by the Holy Ghost, without ever 
feeling any thing of either; and to cap the infernal climax, 
when a man has obtained this doubtful testimony of his ac- 
ceptance with God, he can never lose it! 

Pascal, the strength of whose reason was so much celebrat- 
ed in the last age, thought that peace and love unfelt and con- 
sequently unenjoyed, were of as little service to him "as a 
painted sun to a plant under snow, or the description of some 
beautiful fruits to a man starved with hunger." Take the 
following one of his thoughts: 

"To know God speculatively is not to know him at alL 
Heathens knew him to be the infallible author of geometri- 
cal truths, and supreme disposer of nature. The Jews knew 
him by his providential care of his worshippers, and tempo- 
ral blessings, but christians know God as a God of consola^ 



228 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

Hon and love, a God who possesses the hearts and souls of 
his servants, gives them an inward feeling of their own mis- 
ery, and his infinite mercy, and unites Himself to their spir- 
its, replenishing them with humility and joy, with affiance 
and love." But to proceed. When persons come forward 
and attach themselves to the Presbyterian church, and relate 
to the session their bad feelings, &c. it is said they have ^'ob- 
tained a hope." Nor is there but little, if any religion among 
the most of them, save that of a hope-so-religion. Now if 
I understand the true and scriptural import of this term, it 
means desire and expectation, in the absence of which it does 
not, and indeed cannot exist. 2. Hope always implies a want 
of possession, as it regards the thing hoped for.. Thus St. Paul 
says, ''For we are saved by hope. But hope that is seen is 
not hope; for what a man seeth why doth he yet hope for it? 
But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience 
wait for it.^' 3. Hope implies a possibility/ of obtaining 
the thing hipped for, without which hope flies, and despair 
ensues. 4. If the view 1 have taken of hope be correct, 
does it not follow that there has been a very great misuse of 
the term in its application to the subject of salvation? In 
these latter days, we frequently hear men, claiming to be 
-^competenf^ ministers, to the exclusion too of all others, in 
their public accounts of revivals of religion, conclude by 

saying, in substance, "As the fruits of this revival have 

obtained a hopeP^ I ask, a hope of what? In the name of 
Buzzard's Bay, Turks Island, and the Cape of GooiiHope, 
what do Hopkinsian ministers mean, when they say such an 
one obtained a hope! If they mean that the individuals re- 
fered to, having obtained the conversion op. their souls, 
have "now a hope of glory," it is well enough; but if they 
mean that they have obtained a hope that they have been 
brought out of the darkness, guilt, and misery of sin, into 
the light, liberty, and peace of the sons of God, it is only 
darkening counsel by words without knowledge. 

If religion be a subject of knowledge, as the scriptures 
teach, then it is not a subject of hope; for hope, I have al- 
ready shown, is desireax\di expectation of some future good; 
and if it be not a subject of knowledge, then it is of no con- 
sequence whether we have it or not. I say, if the difference 
between being happy in God, and being miserable in sin, is 
so little, that we cannot know it, then it is by no means im- 
portant to our present happiness, which state we are in. To 
me, this reasoning seems conclusive, but to others it may have 
the appearance of misrepresentation, again. 



or PRESB YTERIANISM. 229 

I close by adding a few sayings from an old book called 
the Bible, and said 1o have been written a long time ago! 

*<lf in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all 
men most miserable.'' I Cor. xv, 19. <<The Spirit itself 
beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of 
God.'' Rom. viii, 16. ^^And because ye are sons, God hath 
sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts^ crying, 
Abba, Father." Gal. iv, 6. 

^^And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath 
given us an understanding that we may know him that is 
true; and we are in him that is the true God." I John v, 20. 



CHAPTER VII. 

h BRIEF NOTICE OP A WORK ENTITLED "QUESTIONS ON THE 
SYSTEM OP DIDACTIC THEOLOGY, TAUGHT IN THE SOUTHERN 



The many distinctions, of an abstruse nature, yet glar- 
ingly absurd, which have accompanied the gradual develop- 
ment of Hopkinsian Calvinism, go very much to strengthen 
the truth of the main proposition on which Deistn rests, 
namely, that God has fore-ordained whatsoever comes to 
pass, and that this universal decree is predicated oi fore- 
knowledge. I allude to improved modern Deism. The 
work under consideration, is the production of Dr. Anderson; 
and while it contains at bottom, all the essential features of 
old Calvinism, it is deeply spiced with metaphysical madness. 
I have examined it closely, and I am prepared to say, that 
all the noxious doctrines of Calvinism are separately con- 
sidered by the writer, and that too, without any sort of dis- 
guise. The tenacity with which the writer holds fast the 
noxious features of Calvinism, and the metaphysical manner 
in which he undertakes to make them harmonize with the 
freedom of man — if indeed he allows to man any freedom 
at all — betrays him, it appears to me, into a method of rea- 
soning and illustrating, which does great disservice to Christi- 
anity, by opening a door for all sorts of infidel heresies. 
And all this mass of licentious stuff, it will be recollected by 
the reader, is ^Haughf^ in the seminary at Maryville! But 
I have neither time nor a disposition at present, to enter fully 
upon an examination of this work — to controvert it I mean. 
I will content myself with giving the first essay in the book, 
u 



230 HEIPS TO THE STFDT 

which is on Natural Theology, and which, I unhesitatingly 
affirm, is rank Deism. 

•'What is natural theology? 

Ans. It is that knowledg-e of divine truth which is discoverable by the 
light of nature. 

What is meant hy the light of nature? 

Arts. The evidence which the works of God exhibit of divine truth, to 
such minds as ours, if disposed to receive the evidence, and investigate 
the truth. 

What does natural theology teach? 

Ans. Many fundamental doctrines, and also the essential dnty of man! 

What first fundamental doctrine do you mention as taught by natural 
theology? 

By what method does natural religion teach the existence of a God! 

Ans. By the facts presented in the universe. 

8th. How do you show from these facts that there is a God? 

9th. What fundamental doctrine do you next mention? 

Ans. The esseutial perfections of god! ! 

10th. Shew that natural religion teaches the omnipotence of God. 

1 1th. Shew that it teaches the unity of God. 

12th. Shew that it teaches the wisdom of God. 

13th. Shew that it teaches the omniscience of God. 

14th. Shew that it teaches the omnipresence of God. 

I6th. Shew that it teaches the goodness or benevolence of God. 

16th. Does God's goodness comprehend all his moral perfections, 'jus- 
tice, truth, holiness and mercy? 

17th. What fundamental doctrines do you mention in the third place? 

Ans. God's universal decrees and agency. 

18th. Shew how natural religion teaches these doctrines. 

19th. Shew how it teaches God's sovereignty. 

30th. Shew that it teaches the entire dependence of creatures ca 
God. 

21st. Shew that it teaches the essential difference between right and 
wrong. 

22d* Shew that it teaches the justice of eternal punishment. 

23d. You have said that natural religion teaches the essential duties of 
man. 

24th. What do you first mention under this head? 

Ans. Supreme love to God. 

25th. Shew that it teaches this duty. 

26th. Shew how it teaches unconditional submission. 

27th. Shew that it teaches the duty of loving our neighbor as our- 
selves. 

28th. Shew that it clearly teaches DISINTERESTED BENEVOLENCE.^' 

Remarks. — If natural theology teaches all the essential 
perfections of God, and the whole duty of man, as stated 
above, then, I say, away with revelation ! And if natural 
theology teaches all the doctrines contained in the foregoing 
questions and answers, embracing <<God's universal decrees," 
— "unconditional submission," — and "disinterested benevo- 
lence," it teaches more than revealed theology does, for the 



OF PRESB TTERIANISM. 231 

Bible teaches no such doctrines. Nor would the deist ask 
the christian to grant any thing more, than Dr. A. has granted 
in the above, in order to silence him. I do not depreciate 
natural theology, nor would I misrepresent the theology of 
the Bible. Natural theology has its proper office. Revealed 
theology has its proper place. But while the former teaches 
us very little concerning God, with certainty, the latter acts 
the part of a successful, and a profound teacher. It is one of 
the distinguishing characteristics of the revelation contained 
in the sacred scriptures, that, in every important point, it 
harmonizes with the deductions of sound reason, and the 
principles of common sense. This however, might naturally 
be expected; since God is the author both of the reasoning 
faculty in man, and of the declaration contained in the volume 
of inspiration. 

Again: The grave and the worm are appalling to the heart, 
and fill it with fearful apprehensions. Through fear of death, 
thousands are all their life time subject to bondage. From 
this undue degree of fear, a man in the enjoyment of revealed 
religion is delivered. But no man ever was brought to this 
sense of the endless duration of his soul by the light of na- 
ture, nor by a long train of reasoning, the opinion of Dr. 
Anderson to the contrary notwithstanding. These may 
satisfy a merely speculative enquirer, but they can never 
satisfy the man, who is alive to the importance of eternity, 
and makes it the subject oi his enquiries. Death and the 
grave laugh to scorn what man calls natural religion. 

There corruption performs her work in triumph; and he, 
who rejects the Bible, must look on and despair. It is the 
gospel only, which brings life and immortality to light, and 
it is by an honest belief in God's revealed will, that a man 
first learns to regard himself as the heir of eternity. 

The immortal Byron's views of the Bible, as expressed in 
fiis dying words, are my views: — 

"Within this awful volume lies 
The mystery of mysteries. 
O! happiest they of human race. 
To whon^ our God has given grace 
To hear, to read, to fear, to pray. 
To lift the latch, and force the way; 
But better had they ne'er been horn, 
"Who read to doubt, or read to scorn." 

But the religion taught by Christ and his apostles, must and 
%ill prevail. ^ In despite of Julian, the miserable apostate, 
Hume, the infidel philosopher, Hobbes, the gloomy sceptic, 
Voltaire^ the inveterate foe to Christ, Uousseau, the witty 



232 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

profligate, Paine, the detestable, dishonest and vulgar op- 
poser of truth, and the natural religion of Mary ville and its 
vicinity, rei^ew/e^/ religion must triumph. 

Again: Sooner than I would send a son of mine to this 
seminary, were I a parent, to study Anderson^s system of na- 
tural theology, I would send him where he might learn the 
great system of idealism, as held by Hume and Berkely! 
Sooner would I embrace the degrading sentiments of Hobbes 
and Mandeville, the former representing religion as the cre- 
ation of human policy, and the latter representing its sole 
principle to be the love of human praise. What! natural 
theology teach a man all about God, the duties he owes to his 
God, and to his fellow beings! Strange indeed! Deism to 
ail intents and purposes! But if Dr. Anderson's system of 
natural theology be a sound one, why send missionaries to the 
heathens? Why take such pains to send the Bible with rnis- 
sionaries to the different heathen countries under the sun? 
Verily the Africans, the Indians, and others whom we are la- 
boring to rescue from pagan darkness, have the theology of 
nature among them in all its splendor! But, neither the book 
of nature, or of conscience, or any other book in the world, 
save that of the Bible, gives us either a satisfactory idea of 
Deity, or the manner in which he is to be v/orshipped. It is 
in the Bible we learn, both that God is, and that *'he is a re- 
warder of them who diligently seek him." The Bible reflects 
a light which never dawned on the mind of man, however 
much he may have been aided by the light of nature. Many 
of the ancient philosophers felt the propensities to evil, but 
never could tell, till assisted by revelation, whence they pro- 
ceeded. Look into the popular mythology of Greece and 
Rome, and you will see, that many of their most distinguished 
philosophers, not having learned that the spring was cor- 
rupted by the introduction of moral evil, they were at a loss 
to determine how the streams became polluted. In conclu- 
sion, I would calculate on rendering as much real service to 
the cause of God and my country, by patronizing the Univer- 
sity of Paris, or the Military School of France, as that of th^ 
Southern and Western Theological Seminary. 



OF PRESBYTERIANISM. 233 



CHAPTER VIIL 

A BRIEF NOTICE OF THE DOCTRINES OF THE LEADING- DENOMI- 
NATIONS IN OUR COUNTRY, AND A WORD OF ADVICE TO 
THOSE WHO THINK OF UNITING WITH SOME CHURCH. 

With what church do you think to unite reader? — Perhaps 
you are ready to conclude as many others have done, that it 
matters not what your name is called, if you are only a chris- 
tian. And, say you, there are the Methodists and Baptists, 
the Presbyterians and Hopkinsians, the Congregationalists 
and Lutherans, the Cumberland Presbyterians and Quakers; 
and I see hut little difference in them all, as they are alien- 
gaged in promoting revivals, and the benevolent enterprises 
of the day. With one or the other of these churches I shall 
probably unite, but 1 dojiot know which. I am glad, gentle 
reader, that you are so pleased with the churches, and that 
you have concluded to associate yourself with some one of 
tliem afterwhile. And I readily grant, it is true, that in some 
tilings there is but little difference between them; but in 
many things they differ much; and much of this difference is 
on very important points. Reader, would you not do well 
to examine this subject critically, before you join any church? 
Let us see what the facts are. The name methodist, has 
been applied to different sects, both Papists and Protestants, 
in France, England and elsewhere. The Wesleyan Metho- 
dists are so called from John Wesley, an eminent scholar and 
divine, of the church of England, who commenced forming 
societies in London, about a century ago. The first Metho- 
dist society ever formed in the United States, was in the city 
of New- York, in 1 766. And the first Methodist church v/as 
built in New-York in 1768. This is now, the most numerous 
sect on the American continent. The Methodists agree with 
the leading denominations of this country, in several respects; 
— and in several respects they materially differ from all other 
denominations. The doctrines of the Wesleyan Methodists, 
are the same as the church of England, as set forth in her 
liturgy, articles, and homilies. The principle means em- 
ployed of late by other denominations to promote revivals, 
have been constantly employed by the Methodists, ever since 
they have been a people: they make a part of their system. 
And all those doctrines which are so popular in the present 
day, and which distinguish the Protestants from the Roman 
Catholics, have long been held in common by the Methodists. 
u2 



234 HELF3 TO THE STUDY 

In their mode of Church Government, they differ some- 
what from all other denominations. The government of the 
Methodists is called Episcopal; that is, the church is su- 
perintended by Episcopal Bishops, whose duty and daily bu- 
siness it is, to travel at large through the whole work; pre- 
side in the Annual and General Conferences; — with the as- 
sistance of the Elders, ordain those who have been elected 
to the work of the ministry, — and, with the advice and con- 
sent of the presiding Elders of the several districts, in coun- 
cil assembled, appoint the preachers to their circuits and sta- 
tions. 

The Methodists agree with other churches in the manner 
of receiving and excluding members; that is, by the voice of 
the people. Still, in one or two respects there is a difference; 
1st None are admitted as full members of the Methodist 
church, until they have met in class at least six months on 
trial. And 2dly. If, when excluded, they think justice has 
not been done, they are allowed an appeal to the Quarterly 
Meeting Conference; provided nevertheless, they do notab- 
sent themselves from trial, on the day appointed. 

As it respects Baptism, although they admit immersion, 
to be scriptural and valid, they do not think it the only valid 
mode, nor do they reject infants as proper subjects; of course 
they commune with all who acknowledge the essential di- 
vinity of Christ. In this they differ from the Baptists, but 
perfectly agree with all high minded and liberal christians. 
The Baptists, are a denomination of christians who main- 
tain that baptism is to be administered by immersion, and in 
no other way. They believe that immersion is the only val- 
id mode; — that no other preacher but a baptist preacher has 
any right to immerse;— that immersion by a baptist preacher 
IB essential to salvation ;—\hQy will re-baptize, and they re- 
ject infant baptism. Although there were several baptists 
among the followers of Wickliffe, it does not appear that they 
were formed into any stabilitytill the day sofMenno, about the 
year 1536. The baptists who flourished previous to this time, 
not satisfied with Luther's plan of reformation, undertook a 
visionary enterprize, to found a new church entirely spiritu- 
al and divine!! 

And Munzer, an immersionist, and his associates, in the 
year 1525, put themselves at the head of a numerous army, 
and declared war against all laws, governments, and magis- 
trates of every description ! ! ! 

The Church Goveriiment of this sect, in many respects, 
resembles that of the Congregational, and in other respects it 



OF PRESBYTERIAiriSM. 235 

resembles that of the Roman Catholic Church. They partic- 
ularly resemble the Catholics, in that they refuse to hold com- 
munion with any other church but their own. 

In their doctrinal system, they hold forth the doctrine of 
prtdestination to vn'ath, — election to life, and the final 
perseverance oi the s^mis. Generally, when the ministers of 
this denomination ipreach free salvation, they must be under- 
stood to mean that it is free for the elect, who were eternally 
chosen in Christ. How can it be free for reprobates? See the 
Articles of Faith contained in the minutes of the Shaftsbury 
Baptist Association, published in 1806; and see the circular 
letter contained in thsPittsford Baptist Association, publish- 
ed in 1810. 

The difference between the. Congregationalists and the 
Presbyterians is ve^y trifling, as I have shown heretofore; 
it chiefly respects the ^ot;e?'n??ie?z^ of the churches. The 
former is congregational, that is, each separate church regu- 
lates its own affairs, wholly independent of all others. The 
latter is presbyterial, that is to say, the presbyteries com- 
posed of ministers and ruling elders, have the supervision of 
the churches. 

The views they entertain of the doctrine of the Bible, and 
the plan of salvation, are precisely similar, and alike erro- 
neous, as will be seen by a reference to the Articles of Faith 
published by the General Association of the one, and the 
General Assembly of the other. It is true, however, some 
ministers and some churches among these denominations, ap- 
pear to differ somewhat from their standard writings. But 
when we examine them, we find that the difierence is in 
phraseology rather than in sentiment. Their doctrinal sys- 
tem is the same. It is strictly Calvinistic. And the many 
changes and metaphysical refinements in theology, of which 
we see and hear so much, in the Presbyterian and Congre^^a- 
tional churches, are but so many efforts to keep Calvinism in 
countenance, among those who have become disgusted with 
its absurdities. But I shall not stop now to notice the many 
and diversified explanations which have been given of late, to 
reconcile the idea of unconditional election and reproba- 
tion with the language of the Bible, though these very ex- 
planations nvight be introduced here as most convincing evi- 
dence of the absurdity of the doctrine. 

The Lutherans, are so called because of their following 
the opinions of Martin Luther, the celebrated reformer of 
the church, in the sixteenth century. This great and gaod 



23^ HELPS TO THli; STUDY 

man was a native of Eisleben, in Saxony, and was born in 
the year 1483. Many zealous champions in the ministry, 
Maximilean the emperor, the court of Rome, and the Devil 
himself, were all up in arms against Luther, when he engaged 
in the glorious work of reform. 

As it respects the doctrinal system of the Lutherans, they 
oppose the doctrine of freewill, — maintain predestination in 
a certain sense, and assert our justification to be solely by tlve 
imputation of the merits of Christ. Buck says, 'Hhe Lu- 
therans, of all protestants, are said to differ least from tlie 
Romish church; as they affirm that the body of Christ, and 
blood ^Tt materially present in the sacrament of the Lord's 
supper, though in an incomprehensible manner. '^ See also 
Mosheim's Church History, and the life of Luther. 

The Cumberland Presbyterians, are a body of people 
who reside mostly in the states of Kentucky, Tennessee. 
Missouri, and in the territory of Arkansas. They constitute 
a church separate from the general Presbyterian church, and 
seem to have organized on the 10th of February, 1810. This 
separation from the mother church, took place during the 
great revival in the west in the year 1800. 

This church was constituted by Samuel M'Adovv, Finis 
Ewing, and Samuel King, regularly ordained ministers in 
the oid Presbyterian church. These men seem to have 
thought that the old church was too strict, in that she requir- 
ed certain literary attainments on the part of young men, 
before she would license them to preach; and on this ac- 
count, they determined on this separate organization With 
respect to doctrines, the Cumberlands hold to all the doc- 
trines of the old church, save that of unconditional election 
and reprobation. Their church government, with some 
slight alterations, is the same. 

The Quakers, a people who took their rise in England, 
about the middle of the seventeenth century, were so called 
by their enemies; but they called themselves' *Vee/^er5 at first, 
and afterv/ards assumed the appellation of Friends. The 
venerable George Fox seems to have been their first founder; 
but, after his day, Penn and Barklay, gave to their church a 
more solid form. 

The doctrines of these people have been variously repre- 
sented; and some have charged them with being favorable to 
Socinianism, or with denying the divinity of Christ. This 
charge Penn says, is false and slanderous. In regard to the 
leading doctrines of the gospel, the Quakers agree in common 



OP PRESBTTEKIANISM. 237 

wlih other professors of the Christian name. They are op- 
posed to oaths, and they are against war, both offensive and 
defensive. 

They are opposed to the custom of speaking to a single per- 
son in the plural number; and they are opposed to regarding 
one day as more sacred than another. Generally, the Qua- 
kers are so straight, that like tlie Indian's tree, they lean 
over! 

In the United States, the Quakers are divided into the Or- 
thodox, and Hicksites, or followers of the late Elias Hicks. 
The latter are considered as having departed from the origin- 
al doctrines of the Quakers, and from the leading doctrines 
of Christianity, as held by protestant christians in general. 

Reader, I have given you a very brief sketch of the de- 
nominations of christians, which are most common in our 
country. Do you wish to know with which you ought to 
unite? Study well your Bible, and form opinions of your 
own, as to the doctrines it contains. Then enquire whose 
Articles of Faith best agree with your views of gospel truth. 
The Bible is the only infallible standard of christian doc- 
trines. To this let us ever appeal as the supreme judge of 
all controversies about christian faith and practice. By this 
standard let all doctrines be tried, our views guided, and our 
consciences ruled. 

However, those professedly learned divines, whose doc- 
trines are not very popular, will urge, as they have been ac- 
customed to do, that neither the unlearned preacner nor read- 
er, can understand the S2riptures. If you are unlearned 
reader, in the science and philosophy of men, tell such to re- 
member that those reverend philosophers who composed the 
West Minster Confession of Faith declare, that the scriptures 
are so plain 'Hhat not only the learned but the unlearned, 
by a due use of the ordinary means may attain to a suf- 
piciENT understanding of themP'' 

I desire to put you on your guard against those who are so 
anxious to make proselytes to their church, that they do not 
exhibit their doctrines, as they really are. They may per- 
haps attempt to flatter your vanity, or they may promise to 
promote your interest in some way. Are they Methodists? 
— Get their Book of Discipline as published by their Gen- 
eral Conference, and examine their sentiments. Are they 
Presbyterians or Hopkinsians? — Get their Confession of 
Faith, as amended and ratified by their General Assem- 
bly, of 1S21. Are they Baptists or Congregationalists?^ — > 
Get their Articles, as published from time to time by theiF 



238 HELPS TO THE STUDY 

General Associations and Consociations, and examine 
their sentiments. Are they Lutherans? — Get their Articles^ 
and examine their system. Are they Cumberland Presbyte- 
rians? — Get their Confession of Faith, or Ewing\s Lee- 
iu7^es, or some other standard work of theirs, as acknowledg- 
ed by their General Synod, and examine into the nature of 
their church government and doctrinal system. Are they 
Quakers? — Get their Standard Writings, as acknowledged 
by their Yearly Meetings, and examine their sentiments. 
And so by every other sect. It is not for the faith of a ie.w 
individuals you should inquire, but for the faith of the great 
body of ministers and ruling members of the church. What 
are the doctrines which the proper authorities of the church 
have agreed on, and published to the world? This is properly 
the creed of the churches to which they belong. 

Are you aware, that when you join any church, you do in 
fact espouse all the doctrines by which that church is distin- 
guished? So thepubhc certainly understand it. Objections 
repeatedly urged against the objectionable features of a certain 
system, amount to nothing, except to show our inconsistency. 
But have not these churches altered their sentiments since the 
publication of their standard works? When they shall have 
publicly renounced what they have again and again publish- 
ed, we shall think they have indeed altered their sentiments^ 
but not till then. 

Once more: It is presumed every church has a system of 
discipline as well as articles of faith. Examine that sys- 
tem, and examine it closely. If any say they have no discip- 
line, it will be well for you to consider whether any person 
ought to join such a church. And it may not be amiss to 
consider, whether it is proper to ^ ^solemnly covenanf' to 
walk with any particlar church, and support its doctrines and 
polity, "50 lo7ig as you may live.'' Hereafter you may pos- 
sibly discover that its doctrines were not true, and its polity 
not scriptural: you could not withdraw from it without being 
regarded as a covenant breaker, or a false swearer. Take 
care then how you entangle your conscience ! If you do not 
believe in the doctrines which are held by this or that par- 
ticular church, I beseech you not to profess to believe them. 
There is no compulsion in a free country. And certainly, if 
there be any thing concerning which we ought to manifest 
honesty and candor, it is religion. And however popular 
error may be, you should reject it; and however impopular 
truth may be, you should embrace it, and with a holy auster- 
ity espouse it, — fearless too, of consequences. 



OF PRESBTTERIANISM. 239 

Friendly reader, ascertain, if possible, what is truth, and 
where you can get the most good, and at the same time do the 
most good; — that is the place for you. 

Praying the Great Head of the church, to direct and guide 
you to the best, and safest results, I remain yours, reader, in 
the kingdom and patience of Jesus. 



li 



A ^ ARRATIVE 

OF THE 

lilFE, TRAVELS, AND CIRCUMSTAIVCES INCIDENT THERETO, 

OF 



Few persons, who have arrived at any degree of eminence 
in life, have written memorials of themselves, that is, such as 
have embraced both their private and public life; but many, 
very many, who never arose to any thing like eminence in 
this life, have written such memorials of themselves; there- 
fore, knowing as I do, that I have never arisen to any thing 
like eminence, and that it is the custom of such only, to write 
out a full history of themselves, I proceed to the performance 
of the task. However, the public transactions of many great 
men, have been recorded by their contemporaries or them- 
selves, apparently too with the best of motives: but why such 
and such things occurred, and are thus recorded; and to/ii/ 
such and such other events which are not related, have been 
passed by in silence, we are rarely told. 

Now, I maintain, that the bad as well as the good acts of a 
man should be related; and then, the reader, having the whole 
man before him, is the better prepared to award to him a 
righteous verdict. But it will,, perhaps, be urged, that a man 
should so conduct himself as to be wholly free from impro- 
prieties, — especially a minister of the gospel. To this I 
reply, that if the memoirs of only such as have lived and died 
without fault, were written, we should seldom, if ever, see a 
production of the kind. 

But if there be more evil than good attached to a man, what 
are we to do? Why, put your veto upon him, and determine 
not to follow his footsteps. But what shall we do when there 
is more good than evil attached to the life and travels of a 
man? Why, faithfully relate the whole, and then profit by 
his example, in that he has done good. But when the scale 
is so perfectly poised that neither end preponderates, what 
shall we do? Why, balance accounts and strike off even! 

Few men can be said to have ininiitable )i?a:c6//criC2V*, orin- 
V 



343 A JTARRATIYE 

imitable failings; let us watch them in their progress from 
infancy to manhood, and we shall soon be convinced that 
while we imitate their virtues, we should shun their vices, 
l^'hen to profit by thepastlivesandconduct of others, we should 
exhibit them in full. This done, we cannot fail to receive 
benefit by an attentive perusal oi what has past, unless we are 
"such as cannot teach, and will not learn." 

That a man, engaged solely in the work of propagating 
Christianity— in carrying the light of the gospel among the 
people — in opposing error, and defending the cause of truth — ■ 
and, finally, in going about like his Saviour, endeavoring to 
do good to all, should find himself exposed to enemies, or 
should meet with opposition, may seem strange! But history 
and observation inform us, that this has been the lot of all 
public men, in a greater or less degree. While some embla- 
zon a man's virtues, others will amplify his faults. A ma- 
jority, however, labor, 

•'The strug-gling" pangs of conscious truth to hide, 
To quench the blushes of ing-enuous shame," 

rather than pursue the opposite course; and, it is not unlikely;, 
that on this account, so few public characters have justice 
done them. 

Again: While the shafts of unmerited censure are hurled 
against some men, and thej are doomed to bear the base in- 
sinuations of invidious tongues, they nevertheless rise to 
victorious eminence, having to all appearance, taken fresh 
courage from the circumstance! But alas for others ! they 
seem to sink beneath the load, and, with the poet they are 
ready to exclaim : .^ 

"While sorrow's encompass me round, 

And endless distresses I see; 
Astonish'd I cry! can a mortal be found. 
That's surrounded with troubles like me ?" 

Perhaps it may be asked, who is the person that offers this 
volume to the world? In this the inquisitive reader shall be 
gratified, for short and simple are the domestic annals of one 
who has not even reached his thirtieth year. I am the eldest 
son of Joseph A. Brownlow, who was born and raised in 
Rockbridge county, in Virginia, in the year 1781, and died 
in Blountville, in Tennessee, in the year 1816. My father 
died when I was so young, that I could not have been a judge 
of his character; — but it has been a source of comfort to me, 
to hear him spoken of by his old associates, as a man of good 
sense, brave independence, and great integrity. 

The death of my father, was a grievous affliction to mj 



OF THE IIFE, &C. 233 

mother, as she was left with jBve helpless children, three sons 
and two daughters, all of whom are still living. Her maiden 
name was Catharine Ganaway, a Virginian likewise, and 
of respectable parentage. But she departed this transitory 
life, in less than three months after the death of her husband. 
Being naturally mild and agreeable in her temperament, she 
was strongly endeared to a large circle of iriends and acquain- 
tances. But their consolation is m this, that when sinking 
into the cold embrace of death, she was happy in the religion 
of Christ. 

However, accounts of the parentage of a man, unless con- 
nected with some very peculiar circumstances, are generally 
uninteresting; and more particularly, when their names are 
not intimately interwoven with the history of their own 
country, or of any other. Beside this, if a man's parents, 
whether dead or alive, are known to have possessed great 
merits, they will be appreciated, and therefore need not to be 
blazoned by the pen of eulogy. 

I was born (and chiefly raised) in Wythe county, in Vir- 
ginia. After the death of my parents, I lived with my 
mother's relations, till within three years of the time I joined 
the Methodist itinerancy, and was appointed to labor as a cir- 
cuit preacher. I ran say, — and I think it my duty not to 
pass over the fact in this brief narrative, — that I feel towards 
those relations for their paternal care over me, a degree of 
gratitude and affection, which can only spring from the laws 
of nature, and the social relations of life. 

As to the days of my childhood, they passed away as those 
of other children, carrying with them the pleasures and pains, 
common to that season. I could, however, relate many in- 
teresting incidents, connected with the history of my boy- 
hood: but lest I justly incur the charge of egotism, I will pass 
them by in silence. 

At a very early period of my life I had impressions of a 
religious nature, which were never erased from my mind; 
and though I made no profession of religion until 1 arrived 
within two years of mature age, and was even rude, yet, I had 
the utmost respect for professors of religion, and particularly 
ministers of the gospel. 

During the month of September, in the year 1825, at which 
time I resided in Abingdon, I attended a camp-meeting, at 
the Sulpher springs, twenty miles east of that, when it pleased 
God to give me the witness of the Spirit. There is a con- 
centration of feeling, — a glow of fancy,— I may say of reli- 
gious aflfection, connected with the recollection of that circum* 



244 A NARRATITE 

stance, which I delight to enjoy. It was here I felt the Lord 
gracious, and was enabled to shout aloud the wonders of re- 
deeming love. All my anxieties were then at an end — all my 
hopes were realized — my happiness was complete. From 
this time I began to feel an increasing desire for the salvation 
of sinners; and in order, more effectually, to engage in this 
work, I returned to Wythe, and spent the ensuing year in go- 
ing to school to William Horne, an amiable young man^ 
and a fine scholar, who, poor fellow ! has long since gone to 
his long home. 

My education was plain, though regular in those branches 
taught in common schools. And even now, though 1 have 
endeavored to study one science after another, and have been 
pouring over books, pamphlets, and periodicals of every de- 
scription, by night and by day, for the last nine years, my 
pretensions are of the most humble kind. 

At the second regular session of the Holston Annual Con- 
ference, held in Abingdon, Va., under the superintendence 
of bishop Soule, in the fall of 1826, I was received into the 
travelling connexion on trial, and appointed to the Black 
mountain circuit, in North Carolina, under Goodson Mc- 
Daniel. I had now to exchange the company of affectionate 
friends, for the society of persons with whom I had no ac- 
quaintance. This was a most affecting time, and will not 
soon be forgotten by the writer. I entered on the labors of 
this year with many painful apprehensions. There were not 
a few on this circuit, as I was previously informed, whose 
minds were very much prejudiced against the Methodists. 
And to my astonishment, upon arriving there, I found our 
most inveterate foes to be professors of Christianity! They 
were the followers of, an old man, who used to go about 
^'preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, repent ye: 
for the kingdom of heaven is at hand;" — and who had <'his 
raiment of camel's hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins:"' 
his ^'meaV being '^locusts and wild honey;" — while the 
people flocked to him from *^all the region round about Jordan, 
and were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins I" 

I allude to a denomination of people q.?\\^^ Baptists. This 
was my first acquaintance with these people. I had no alter- 
cations with any of them, this year; nor did I attend their 
meetings, only when our appointments clashed at those union, 
or gO'betioeen meeting houses. One of those meetings, set 
apart for feet-iv ashing, I never can forget. For, never did 
I, before or since, see as many big dirty feet, washed in one 
large pewter basin full of water! The Baptists are a people 



OT THE LIFE, &C. 24S 

whose theory is SO narrow, and whose creed is so small, that, 
like their shoes, they seem to have been made for their exclu- 
sive use. They consider themselves deputed from heaven 
for the general reformation of men and manners, and would 
try all men at their bar. They are amazed to find that any 
one should doubt the accuracy of their system, because they 
are satisfied with it. Their judgment is biassed, and resem- 
bles a pair of scales of which the beam is forever awry. 
General society, and particular religious associations, formed 
by other denominations, are so imperfect, they cannotendure 
them; and in the investigation of their laws and rules, their 
aim is, not to enjoy that which is right, but to exult over that 
which is wrong. They survey creation through the medium 
of a contracted vision, and consequently forget that they are 
not the only persons, who have a claim upon the bounty of 
the skies. They pity all who differ from their persuasion, 
and wonder how it is that they can dream of being right.,, 
They revolve in a circle of which the centre is themselves. 
Those who are squeezed in with them are the lucky few: all 
without are dogs, if not something worse. Unused to much 
thinking, and too impatient to pursue it, petty purposes, and 
a kind of pin's head policy are all they compass! Still, they 
are struck with the degeneracy of all around them! In these 
sweeping censures they never suspect the prejudices of their 
own minds; though they produce a jaundiced yellowness on 
all they inspect. Of the truth of these things every body 
is sensible but themselves. Well, a little maggot in a nut 
shell might come to the same conclusions, and for a similar 
reason, because the little thing has a maggot^s mind! 

The only misfortune which befel me this )"ear, was that of 
having almost froze to death, on the 26th of December. Hav- 
ing led my nag over Cain river, on the ice, I proceeded to 
cross a spur of tiie Black Mountain, when, I suppose, I came 
as near freezing to death, as ever any poor fellow did, to es- 
cape. Indeed, upon arriving at a small cabin, on the oppo- 
site side of the mountain, I was so benumbed with the cold, 
that I was not only perfectly stupid, but extremely sleepy. 
Here I began to discover, that in exchanging the cold and sa- 
lubrious atmosphere of my native uplands in Virginia, I had 
not gained any thing. However, there is no finer country 
in the summer season, than Western Carolina, or even the 
State of Buncombe, as it is sometimes called. There are 
few places in the world which can vie with the counties of 
Buncombe and Burke, in beauty and novelty of scenery — 
the extended hill-side fields, rich ridges, beautiful springs, 
v2 



H& A JTAKRATIVK 

mountain coves, high conical peaks, and astonishing verdure 
covering the soil, setoff to the best advantage, the lofty Black 
mountain! In the mean time, the Table Rock is in the vi- 
cinity; and every season, the summer visiters add new and 
increasing interest, in their pursuit of deer, and other game. 

Although we did not enjoy the pleasure of seeing hundreds 
converted this year, yet, we had every reason to believe that 
some good had been effected, through our feeble instrumen- 
tality. In the latter part of the year, the professors seemed 
much revived, and appeared to be alive to God. Upon the 
whole, in taking my leave of the circuit, I felt safe, well, and 
happy in my soul. May the Lord bless the good people of 
that county ! 

1827. — In the fall of this year, our conference met in Knox- 
ville, and the venerable Bishop Roberts presided, with his 
usual degree of cheerfulness and acceptability. Here, the 
recurrence of another anniversary occasion, in the history of 
our conference, called for the warmest expression of our 
gratitude to the great Head of the church, for having privi- 
leged us once more to mingle our praises and thanksgivings 
together. I will name one circumstance which occurred du- 
ring the sitting of the conference in Knoxville. It was this: 
A young store keeper, a member of the Presbyterian church, 
drew up a subscription paper, and was, by way of burlesque, 
going about trying to raise money to have my likeness taken I 
I was called on to know if I would subscribe! I replied that I 
would subscribe liberally, if, when they had taken my like- 
ness, they would deposite it in the East Tennessee College, 
or the Seminary at Maryville, for the inspection of Doctors 
Coffin and Anderson, and as a pattern for minister-making! 
This reply, in view of the fact that I looked bad, was indif- 
lerently dressed, and had on a very old fashioned hat, rather 
confused the young Presbyterian. 

At this conference 1 was appointed to French Broad cir- 
cuit, lying mostly above Ashville, in North Carolina, under 
an excellent and agreeable little man, M. E. Kerr. We la- 
bored in this new appointment with increasing success till 
the ensumg spring, when I was taken by my presiding elder, 
W. S. Manson, to travel the Maryville circuit, in lieu of 
James Gumming, then absent to general conference. 

Here 1 could not avoid coming into contact with Anderson's 
young divinity-shoots; for the impetuous little bigots, would 
assail me in the streets, or pursue me into private houses, and 
commence an argument on natural ability, or moral inability, 
OT the impossibility of falling from grace. I fought manful- 



or THE riTE, &c. 247 

y, and did the very best I could, though they always report- 
ed that they had used me up. I remained on this circuit but 
three months. Among the many circumstances which oc- 
curred during my short stay on this circuit, I will only name 
the two following: 

My appointment in Maryville happened on the Sabbath ©f 
the Hopkinsian sacrament, held at their camp-ground near 
the village; and as I had previously arranged my appoint- 
ment to be in the after part of the day, I attended theirs, and 
heard them preach two or more sermons. Well, an inflated 
little priest by the name of Minis, who talked pretty much 
through his nose, and whose head seemed buried between 
his shoulders, apparently to make way for the protuberances 
of his back, addressed the congregation from "I would that 
)-e were either hot or cold,^' &c. In the elucidation of his 
subject, he went on to show that the Methodists were the 
lukewarm whom the Lord would vomit up, &c. &c. He al- 
so went on to speak of our fasting, secret prayers, secret meet- 
ings, and of our down looks, and manner of dress; and final- 
ly, he represented us as being more hideous monsters, than 
the Sphinx of Egypt! In describing the cut of a Methodist 
preacher's coat, and trying to round it off with his finger, 
he seemed so exceedingly awkward, that I arose from my 
seat, and held up one skirt of my coat saying. Sir, I presume 
this is the style you are aiming at! This confused the little 
man so, that it was some time before he gotstarted again. Soon 
after this, myself and a Mr. Brown of the Hopkinsian or- 
der, happened to meet on Sabbath, in the vicinity of a little 
village called Louisville. Although Mr. Brown was as bad 
a looking man as I am, and not much more talented, yet, he 
affected to treat me with great contempt ! When the congre- 
gation had assembled, he commenced reading his hymn, and 
as I thought a very appropriate one, to wit: 
*«How sad our state by nature is, 
. Our sin how deep it stains, &.c." 

Having prayed a long dry prayer, he proceeded to address the 
people from these words, "For God so loved the world, that 
he gave his only begotten son," &c. Well, having divided 
his subject into three parts, on he went, preaching to a mixed 
multitude, in the most lifeless manner imaginable. After 
the preacher closed, we had an intermission of about forty 
minutes, when I endeavored to address the people from the 
same subject. And as he had tried to poke his fun at me, 
I took the liberty to pay him back; and really, when I was 
closing my remarks, he looked to me, more like hard times 



24b8 A NARRATIVE 

abridged, than a preacher of righteousness! From that day 
to this, I could never get Brown to know me. 

About the first of July, I took my leave of Blount county^ 
and returned to my former circuit. Here we had wars and 
rumors of wars, but it was among the Hopkinsians. During 
one single year, no fewer than five clergymen of this order, 
came to Buncombe county, in quest of a call. Three of 
them struggled and fought for more than twelve months. 
They carried their disputes so far as to indulge in the most 
low and vulgar personal abuse, disputing and quarrelling even 
about the money which was collected in hats at their sacra- 
mental meetings! One of them, Bradshaw, actually claim- 
ed, and kept the most of the money. Such strivings for the 
mastery, was never seen in that country before! The result 
was, a division took place among the congregations, some 
voting for one preacher, and some for another. And the 
final result was, that many of the people determined to have 
nothing more to do with any of them. And Hall, the most fu- 
rious of them all, fled to the lower part of the State, and I am 
told, has never been in Buncombe since. Mooney, another 
one of the swarm, visited South Carolina, in quest of a call, 
and has chosen to remain there. How shocked must people 
have been to hear preachers incessantly crying out that their 
reign was not of this world, when their infirmities were such, 
that they could not forbear quarrelling about a little money! 
But, while these unfortunate men were thus disputing, we 
Methodists travelled up and down the country, and endeavor- 
ed to persuade the people that religion was the one thing 
needful. Some experienced religion, and a goodly number 
were added to our church this year. 

There is no finer country, in the summer season, than that , 
about the head waters of French Broad. There the clear 
streams glide with smooth serenity, along the vallies; and 
when amidst a calm summer's sunshine, they glitter to the 
distant view, like sheets of polished crystal, and soothe the 
attentive ear, with the softness of those aquatic murnfurs so 
exhilirating to the fancy. But the huge enormous moun- 
tains! the steep and dizzy precipices; the pendant horrors 
of the craggy promontories — how wild and awful they look of 
a rainy evening! 

*'The hoary winter here conceals from sight 
All pleasing objects that to verse invite. 
The hills and dales, and the delightful woods, 
The flow'ry plains, and silver-streaming floods, 
By snow disguis'd in bright confusion lie, 
And with one dazzling waste fatigue the eye." 



OF THE I.1FE, &C. 249 

Who can ever sufficiently admire the immense benignity 
of the Supreme Disposer of events? How manifold are the 
mercies of God, and how surprising the scenes of Providence . 
Adieu to those scenes, till the last loud trump of God shall 
sound; and until eruptions, earthquakes, comets, and light- 
nings, disgorge their blazing magazines ! 

1828 —In the autumn of this year, our annual conference 
convened in Jonesborough, and bishop Soule again presided, 
despatchina; business with his usual promptness and accepta- 
bility. In his sermon, on Sabbath, he certainly tore the very 
hind-site off of Calvinism ! 

At this conference, I received deacon's orders, and was ap- 
pointed to travel in charge of the Washington circuit, a 
small circuit in the lower end of East Tennessee. Here, 1 
met with enemies, and for a time, had my difficulties: 1 had a 
law-suit upon my hands, against potent adversaries, and my 
all depended on its issue. The circumstances of the case 1 will 
briefly relate. An elder in the Hopkinsian church, who had 
long been distinguished for his violent opposition to Method- 
ism, and particularly Methodist preachers, made an unvvar- 
rantable attack on me, by addressing me an insulting letter; 
requesting an immediate reply from me, and a prompt avowai. 
or disavowal of certain hearsays, mentioned in his letter. 1 o 
this communication I replied with some degree of asperity. 
A rejoinder followed on the part of my adversary, m which 
he called me a puppy, a liar, an infidel, a fool, &c. &c. _ lo 
all this, I replied with a degree of moderation, though in a 
manner not very pleasing to my opponent. He tnen pub- 
lished some garbled extracts from my letters, in the Calvin- 
istic Magazine. And I in turn, published the vvhole corres- 
pondence in pamphlet form, with such additional remarks as 
I thought necessary. 
^ My friend, then, prompted by certain other leading char- 
^'actersin the Hopkinsian church, as he himself afterwards 
acknowledged, instituted a suit of slander against me, in the 
superior court for Rhea county, and employed two able l^w- 
^ vers to prosecute the same. Well, as I was always dispo^^ed 
^ to stand up to my rack, as the saying is, I employed able 
counsel likewise— made out a plea of justification inJuU— 
subpoened witnesses near at hand— went on to West lennes- 
seetotake the depositions of others,— and as Crockett says, 
prepared to go ahead. But, when the day of trial came on, 
the plaintiff, for reasons best known to Aim^e// dismissed 
the suit, at his own cost. And this was the end of that mat- 
ter; save that, the Hopkinsians have uniformly representee 



850 A irAKRATITB 

me as the aggressor, and as having been oufed! If the cu- 
rious reader will take the pains to enquire of his honor^ 
Charles F. Keiths or of any one of my counsel, particularly 
Thomas L. Willia??is, he will learn that it was not the de- 
fendant who crawfished out of this aflfair. 
^ But I found friends here, in the midst of all my embarrass- 
ments, whose hospitality and friendly conversation cheered 
my desponding youth. [For during the winter season, I had 
frequent and dangerous swimming of water courses, in the 
lower end of the circuit, and, to say nothing of my other pri- 
vations, great mental affliction.] And what was better than 
all, we were favored on parts of the circuit, with some drops 
of mercy, which were followed up with reviving showers of 
divine grace. The Lord added 1o our numbers greatly. The 
world, the flesh, and the devil, may array themselves against 
the Lord and his anointed, but it is of no avail. The Lord 
phall have them in derision. These remarks are made with 
gratitute to God, for the success that crowned my feeble efforts 
under these forbidding circumstances. 

Here it was, that I first became acquainted with the people 
called Cumberland Presbyterians, — I mean personally ac- 
quainted with them. The leading object with these people, 
seems to be that of proselyting from other churches. This is 
a most shameful practice. If these people were as anxious to 
persuade sinners to separate from the ranks of the devil, and 
join the church of (iod, as they are to proselyte members of 
other churches and get them to join their party — then would 
they exhibit the true missionary spirit. This was the first 
time in all my life, I ever understood that men were called of 
God, and ordained b}' the church, to go on a mission to con- 
vert those who had previously been converted \ As a Metho- 
dist preacher, when ever this shall have become the business 
of my life, I know I shall appear both inconsistent and ridicu- 
lous in the eyes of every man of sense. 

It was by hearing the Cumberlands preach, that I become 
fully convinced of the superioi advantages of short sermons. 
Although I have heard many of them preach, I do not recol- 
lect to have ever heard more than one who closed till he was 
completely out of strength, words, and ideas! This is a 
failing which attaches itself to the Baptist and Hopkinsian 
clergy likewise. Nor are all the Methodist preachers clear 
in this matter. Too many ministers, among the different 
denominations, tell all they know in one sermon, and some of 
tliem tell that all twice in the same discourse! Others, will 
hum and haw, and tell what they intend to say, and negatively^ 



OF THE LIFE, &c. 2Bi 

What they will not say, and apologize, &c. till they should be 
half done preaching. All this I despise. Indeed there are 
butfew ministers, if any, who can be justified in preachine 
more than an hour on cm?/ subject. The great mass of the 
people, in every part of our country, are so accustomed to hear- 
ing the gospel, that all a preacher need do is, to give the lead- 
ing ideas in his subject. A good sermon is better for beinjr 
short, and to make a sorry sermon long, is out of the ques- 
tion ! In a word, of all the deaths that ever any people died 
there is none so distressing as that of being preached to 
death! 

In the latter part of October, in this year, I visited an 
uncle of mine, who then lived at the head of the Muscle- 
Shoals in Alabama. Curiosity, or a desire to become acquaint- 
ed with the Indian mode of living, led me to travel through 
the Cherokee nation, on the south side of the Tennessee river. 
In doing so, I happened one night, after a hard day's ride, to 
reach the house of a wealthy Indian, a member of the Metho- 
dist church, where, soon after my arrival, several Methodist 
missionaries, and Indian interpreters, on their way to the 
Tennessee Conference, which was soon to convene at Hunts- 
Ville. The man of the house, in addition to being a slave- 
holder, had a number of his relatives about him, living mostly 
in cabins; so that, upon the whole, the yard was aUve with 
human beings! This was an interesting night to me. Tur- 
TLEFiELDs, a native preacher, held prayers for us, and we had 
a feeling time. This man was naturally of a very intrepid 
and independent spirit; but, when engaged in the worship of 
God, his hon-like fierceness seemed gradually to melt down 
into the mildness of the lamb. After closing the exercises 
of the evening, I retired to bed, in a little open room, and 
there lay musing until a late hour. While thus occupied, 
sounds and circumstances of a very different character, again 
and again arrested my attention. The night was exceedino-W 
calm; every thing around me wore the aspect of perfect "Se- 
renity; while the stars, with their usual brightness, glittered 
in the firmament. But amidst this pleasing stillness, so fa- 
vorable to contemplation, I heard a voice, yea voices; and 
these were the voices of a few poor Indians, who, after chat- 
ting around their evening fires, were closing the day with 
hymns of praise and united prayer to heaven. Had any been 
here present, who are at all doubtful as to the mind of an In- 
dian being susceptible of the power of divine grace, I doubt 
not that they would have stood confounded, if not convinced. 
Since that time, however, I have attended several Methodist 



212 A NARRATIVE 

meetings in the Cherokee nation, and at several of them I have 
tried to preach. It is not less pleasing than encouraging to 
observe, that those of our native preachers and interpreters, 
who are truly converted to God, are frequently found boldly, 
though unostentatiously, addressing the multitude upon divine 
subjects, and fearlessly answering th<i objections that are 
urged by gainsayers against the gospel. The substance of 
our sermons being familiarly reiterated by them, amidst the 
different groups around, the seed of truth is much more exten- 
sively spread abroad than even the missionary himself may be 
ready to imagine. By this means a kind of new era is com- 
mencing in our Indian missions; so that, without greatly mul- 
tiplying missionaries in a tribe, we shall be abje to meet the 
wants of this scattered population; and without great expense 
promote the ever-blessed gospel, together with a rapidly in- 
creasing knowledge of the English language. It cannot be 
otherwise than that this is of God; and, to my own mind, it 
appears with all the clearness of demonstration, that from 
year to year God is working out good for the Indians. 

But it is not by means of these men only, that these people 
are zealously assisting us in the grand and glorious work of 
evangelization: the great Head of the church is raising up 
from among them, men also to proceed with the everlasting 
gospel in their hands, to the savage hordes on our western 
frontiers. Like the vine, therefore, the church is here spread- 
ing forth her branches over the wall; and these wandering sons 
of Ham are sitting down under its shade, and partaking of 
its fruit. To God be all the praise. 

Having paid my visit to the shoals, I returned via Hunts- 
ville, Winchester, Bellfonte, and Jasper. I remained in 
Huntsville during the week of conference, and was much 
gratified on becoming acquainted with many of the members 
of that conference. 

1829. — In the fall of this year, our conference again met 
in Abingdon — Bishop Soule in the chair. This year I was 
appointed alone to the Athens circuit. At an early period in 
this year, I had occasion to call at the seminary in Maryville, 
to see a Methodist student; and soon after I had entered his 
room, a young Hopkinsian minister slipped the following note 
to me, under the lower edge of the door: 

«*Sir,— Are you not fearful that you will break some of the old rooster's 
eggs, when you slip into this institution so much like a thief, waiting for 
an opportunity to steal something-? 

Your humble servant, 

Fbabiess." 



I 



OF THE IIFE, &C. 253 

If the reader has perused the whole of this work, he will 
understand the allusion to the <<eggs," and will consequently 
be prepared to make the necessary allowance for the severity 
of my reply. There being a table, pen, ink and paper, all 
just at hand, I immediately seated myself, and returned the 
parson the following answer: 

*' Sitting in the south west corner of the Factory! 
RsvEnEKD sir: 

In answer to your note just received, I have to observe, that I am 
not in any dread of breaking the egg's to which you alkide, or of my do- 
ing- any mischief; for I presume the old Rooster^ is capable of taking care 
of his KEST. As to my slipping "into this institution so much hke a thief, 
waiting for an opportunity to steal something," 1 would say, as Paul did 
by being a Roman, when in Rome, he. Yes sir, when I am among thieves 
and robbers, 1 usually slip and slide about as they do! 
y GUI'S, &c. 

Peter THUJri)ERGUD6Eo>', the crowbar grinder." 

Now, that mildness, meekness, and gentleness of disposi- 
tion, should characterize every minister of the gospel, is a fact 
which no one will doubt; but that these graces can only be 
inspired in a naturally amiable and somewhat refined mind, 
by the sanctifying influences of Christianity upon the heart, 
is equally true. And it is doubtless this commendable quali- 
ty of the heart, this meekness and gentleness of conduct, 
which so completely removes the Methodist ministry, from 
that haughty demeanor so characteristic of the Hopkinsian 
clergy, or of an unsubdued mind swelled with a false notion 
of superiority over its fellows, and which betrays its pos- 
sessor into so many inconsistencies of conduct. While we 
instinctively turn with disgust from the man who assumes to 
himself the claim of a dictator, and betrays on all occasions 
the vanity of his own mind by a supercilious contempt of 
others, we as naturally bow before the virtues of him who in 
his intercourse with his associates evinces a suitable deference 
to their opinions, and manifests that meekness and diffidence 
which arises from a thorough knowledge of his own heart. 
But these virtues only shine forth in the conduct of the foi-, 
lowers of Him who said, "Learn of me, for I am meek and 
lowly of heart.'^ 

During this year, a high-toned professor of religion in 
Athens, and a member of the church of Christ, named 2idog 
after me? In this, the Hopkinsians of Athens, considered 
they had completely over-matched me. As 1 rode through 
town one evening, in the midst of a company of them, I was 
enquired of as follows: "Brownlow, did you know that the 
W 



254 A NARRATIVE 

Hopkinsians of this place had called a dog after you?" I re* 
plied that 1 had understood so. Said the gentleman, *«Well^ 
what do you think of it?" said I, if the dog is good pluck, 
and will hang to a hog when set on, &c. I have no objection to 
his being called after me, but if the dog is cowardly I shall 
not own him as a name-sake; for continued I, when I take 
after a Hopkinsian shoatj I make him charge and squeal all 
over the village. This caused the by-standers to laugh, but 
at the expense of the owner of the dog. 

Here, also, a violent attack was made on the institutions of 
our church, by a Hopkinsian minister, who wrote in defence 
of the national societies, in the "Hiwassean and Athens 
Gazette," a scurrilous little paper, under Hopkinsian influ- 
ence. To some of the many false statements and insinuations 
of this writer, I replied in an article of some length. He 
continued to write, and I to answer him; but alas! the editor 
bf the paper refused to publish for me, on the alledged 
ground, that he did not wish to admit into his columns any 
thing like religious controversy. Still the Hopkinsian min- 
ister wrote on ! 

Not long after this, however, ihxs conscientious Q^ilov ad- 
mitted some very severe anonymous articles mto his columns 
against me, written by a Hopkinsian minister and physician, 
sometimes called Lord Hackberr^y! Poor fellow! he has 
had his troubles since that. Subsequent events authorise me 
to address this man in the following language: — 

*'Your heart is gall — your tongue is fire — 
Your soul too hose for generous ire — 
Your sword too keen for noble use — 
Your shield and buckler are — abuse" 

Within the last four years, there have been many such 
anonymous pieces published against me; generally too by Cal- 
vinistic writers. But nothing looks more cowardly, than for 
an individual, or set of individuals, to be firing at a man in 
this way. And indeed, none hide themselves under fictitious 
names, or appear without any name at all, but those who pub- 
lish things of which they are ashamed. The only protection 
a nameless scribbler can claim or expect, is, either his worth- 
lessness, or the dark mantle in which he shrouds himself. 
And it is well for many of these anonymous writers, that 
their names are thus concealed; for if they were really 
known, in many instances, they would have less credit for 
their statements. Such a course betrays a dastardly spirit: it 
is the resource of one who wants courage to avow his designs. 
All such, however, can peal away at me, without being in any 



or THB XIFB, &c. 255 

way interrupted; for it does not comport with my views of 
self-respect to wage even a defensive war with a misnomer. 
For what I publish, my name is given as a voucher — for the 
truth or falsehood of the same, myself am held respon- 
sible. 

If a man's cause be a good one, why should he hide his face 
behind the curtain of secrecy?. Does honesty need conceal- 
ment? Do virtuous actions shun the pure and open light of 
dav? Does honor — does religion seek to hide behind the 
mantle of night? No! No!! virtue, pure and unsullied vir- 
tue delights to bask in the sunshine of Heaven, and nothing 
is farther from real rectitude of conduct than concea/^en^. 
Concealment is the companion of guilt; together they walk 
tlie gloomy path of crime and calumny; together they guide 
the assassin's dagger to the heart of the unconscious victim; 
and together laugh at the awful flames, that ascend in curling 
wreaths over the head of defenceless innocence. Nor is it 
at all unreasonable to suppose, that where things look thus 
dark and mysterious, there is something ^^rotten in the state 
of Denmark!" How ridiculous for men of honorable pre- 
tensions to act thus! But how much more so for m.en who 
are engaged in the sacred exercises of the pulpit, proclaiming 
the will of God concerning man, to act thus! What! a man 
clothed in the reverential habiliments of a minister, who oc- 
cupies a stand as the representative of the Almighty, and 
professes to be the organ of truth and righteousness, to de- 
o-rade his character and profession, by stooping to the low and 
dirty practice of secret slander! Yet, hypocritical and un- 
principled as the practice is, a Hopkinsian minister acted 
quite a conspicuous part in it, on the occasion to which I 
have special reference. Shameful! Worse than ridiculous! ! 
Cromwell, thou monster! blush at this conduct. Nero, 
thou bloody monster! rebuke such ministers. Thou Inquisi- 
tion of Spain, turn pale at the bare mention of this prostitu- 
tion of the sacred office! Of all the abominations that dis- 
grace and dishonor the ministry in these portentous times, I 
know nothing more deserving of reprobation, than the pros- 
titution of the sacred functions, for purposes so base! 

On this circuit, during this year, we had a considerable re- 
vival in our churcli. In short, the fallow ground of many a 
heart, there is reason to believe, was broken up and the seed 
^wnin righteousness, which brought forth fruit to the honor 
and glory of God. This, to me, was truly refreshing, after 
having encountered those severe trials the year before. It was 
meeting with a verdant Oasis in the midst of an African 



256 A XARRATIVB 

desert, or the shadow of a great rock in a weary land. It was 
like the dew of Hermon sweetly distilling upon the moun- 
tain of Zion; and many of the hospitable members, and 
worthy local preachers of that circuit, can bear witness that 
"there the Lord commanded ablessingjcven life for evermore.'^ 
I feel grateful to my friends and acquaintances on the 
Athens circuit, for the courtesies I received from them, but 
more so to that being who, in his infinite mercy, has protect^ 
ed me in every peril; and to whom I now say: 

* 'For this, my life, in every state, 

A life of praise shall be; 

And death, when death shall be my fate, 

Shalljoin mysoulto THEE." 

1830. — About the last of October, m this year, our con- 
ference met at Ebenezer in Greene county. Bishops M^Ken- 
dree and Soule were both present — the latter presided. At 
this conference I received elder's orders, and was appointed 
to travel in charge of the Tellico circuit, in the Hivvassee 
district. For the first three or four tours round this circuity 
I labored with increasing success, but it was not long till I 
discovered there were some stumbling-blocks in some of the 
societies, or obstacles to the influence of religion, which it 
was necessary to remove. Hence, I set about the work of 
reform; and in a very short time, I had not only ascertained 
the real state of the societies, but as I believe, actually better- 
ed their condition. In the little town of Madisonville, there 
were several malcontents belonging to our society, who 
gave us some trouble before we could get rid of them. 

The exercise of proper discipline in the church requires 
much wisdom, and not a little fortitude; and in proportion to 
the disordered state in which a minister may find that part of 
the Lord's vineyard he is called to labor in, will be his diffi- 
culty : generally those who are accustomed to break our rules,, 
do so from a secret repugnance to them — the lukewarm and 
the worldly-minded respect the rules of the church so far as 
they suit their convenience; and it is not always the case that 
men have influence in a church in consequence of their more 
exalted piety. The duty of the minister, however, lies plain 
before his eyes: let him scrupulously and vigilantly regard 
the honor of God, and the prosperity of his cause, rather 
than any man's person, though he may have on ''gay cloth- 
ing:'' 

In the town of Madisonville, the Methodists, Baptists and 
Hopkinsians, all had their separate houses for worship; and 
it was not an uncommon thing for them all to be hymning 



OF THE ilFE, &C. 257 

the praises of their maker at once. This was as it should 
Jiave been: let each and ev^ery denomination have their own 
house of worship, and attend to theirown business; and then, 
to use a vulgar saying, let the longest pole take the pe7'sim' 
?no}is. 

Here, again, I was somewhat annoyed by those people 
called Baptists. It is true they were not very formidable; 
still, there were several preachers of this order, (if it be law- 
ful to call ihcm p?'cachers, J who were continually harangu- 
ing the people on the subject of baptism, or rather of im^ 
mersion. By day and by night, their cry was, water! wa- 
ter!! water!!! as if heaven were an island, situated some- 
where in the British sea, and we all had to 5M;im to get there ! 
— or, as if the Savior of mankind were di penny winkle, and 
could only be found hanging to a sand-stone, in the bottom of 
some water course ! And, one could as easily track a cat-fish 
through the Suck, in the Tennessee river; or side-line a whale 
through the Muscle Shoals in Alabama; or illumine the uni- 
verse with the tail of a lightning-bug; or, hold a soaped 
pig by the tail, as convert these people from the error of their 
way. 

It was on this circuit too, that I had the controvei*sy with 
the agents of the ^^merican Sunday School Union, allud- 
ed to in the first section of this work. And it was here, that 
I published the pamphlet entitled an ^^Address totheHiwas- 
seans, on the subject of Sabbath schools,'' &c. ; and for the 
sin of this publication, it seems, I am not to get forgiveness, 
either in this life, or in the life to come. I did greatly ex- 
pose their machinations in this pamphlet. And this I must 
ever continue to do; for I view with jealousy the general 
movements of the Presbyterian church. I unfortunately sus- 
pect that there is more of political management in all their 
affairs, than of concern for the souls of men. This may be 
my misfortune, but I am sincere in avowing it. Many of 
the common people, attached to this church, are unsuspecting 
and innocent, and ought to be pitied rather than blamed; for 
if their preachers were not to impose upon their gullibility , 
and thus designedly and knowingly lead them astray, they 
would not connive at their measures. As to tlie preachers 
themselves, most of them know they are in error, and they 
seem determined to continue in error. Clergymen are of all 
Gther men the most difficult to convert. One of the evangel- 
ists informs us, that it was not till multitudes of the common 
people believed, that a great company of the priests became 
obedient to the faith I I hope those moderate persoios who 
w2 



258 A NARKATIVE 

aim to steer between all extremes, will pardon me, for hay- 
ing said so much in relation to the Presbyterians, and for 
having said it so plainly too. God knows I have no desire 
to increase the bickerings and uncharitable feelings which 
now prevail among the different denominations. I m.ourn 
this evil in the church, but I see clearly it cannot be remedied. 
Though I never did nor never will advocate union: on the 
contrary I will ever oppose it. An attempt to effect such a 
thing is vanity, and try it who w^ill, it will be found to give 
rise to vexation of spirit. 

During this year, there was no little excitement through- 
out the Hiwassee district, on the all-absorbing subject of Free. 
Masonry; and this excitement has been kept up and in- 
creased, as the public prints will shew, till the present day; 
and in imitation of those zealous partizans at the north, they 
are even forming .^Tz/i-Masonic societies there. There is a 
lodge of no inconsiderable force in Athens, and another in 
Madisonville — with man}" of the members of both these 
lodges, I am personally and particularly acquainted. Many 
of them are honorable men and worthy citizens: others of 
them are scoundrels of the baser sort. This, however, ar- 
gues nothing against the system of Masonry; for there are 
good and bad men belonging to all, and even the best of as- 
sociations. I have never published or preached one sentence 
against the system of Masonry, for the very reason too, that 
I know nothing certainly about the system. I suppose, 
however, thatMorgan's exposition of it is a correct one; and 
this opinion has been strengthened and confirmed, from the con- 
sideration that, from the days of Morgan down to the pres- 
ent, thcvsystem has been on the decline. Yet, I would give 
it as my opinion, that a minister had better say but little about 
Free Masonry in the pulpit, lest he should make false state- 
ments before he is aware of it. I am not a mason myself — I 
never was one — I never intend to be one. For I consider 
that the religion taught by Jesus Christ and his Apostles, and 
which is contained in the New Testament, will answer all the 
gracious ends proposed in the system of masonry. 

Thus I have thrown together, as they occurred, a few 
thoughts, which may suffice for the present, to show the state 
of my mind, and the state of things on the Tellico circuit, 
during this year. 

May the good people of that section, live and die in the full 
enjoyment of that religion which is peaceable, permanent, 
and purifying; and whose reward is glory, honor, immortal- 
ity, and eternal life. 



OF THE LIFE, &C. 259 

1831. — This year, our conference was held in Athens 

Bishop Hedcling presided. From this conference I was sent 
to the Franklin circuit, in the western part of North Caroli- 
na. Here, again. I had another law-suit upon my hands, 
hefore I was aware of it, and that too against a host of the 
most bigotted and infuriated Baptists I ever met with in any 
country. Yes, I will venture to affirm — to use no harsher 
language — that they are without a parallel — they stand unri- 
valled in the whole world of inquisitorial accusers! The 
plaintiff in this suit, was however, a Baptist Preacher, 
who had all his lifetime been engaged in some paltry pecula- 
tion or other, and in persecuting and slandering Methodist 
preachers, doctrines, discipline, &c. In a word, a man less 
depraved by means of ministerial trichery, less hardened 
by ardent and insidious aspirations for money, cannot be found 
in the western country. If I were called upon to point out 
a preacher, lost to all sense of honor and shame, blind to all 
the beauties of religion, and every way hackneyed in crime, 
I would point to this man. But, for the satisfaction of the 
reader, I will, by way of preliminary, give a brief account 
of this whole transaction. First, this man, in addition to 
having been almost all his lifetime engaged in mercilessly 
fleecing the flock, and in litigations of one kind or another, 
has also been unremittingly aspiring after preferment; and 
like some noxious characters who lived in the days of our 
Savior, he has always manifested a desire to "walk in long 
robes," while he has even loved '^greetings in the markets 
and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms 
at feasts." In the next place, there has never been a iMctho- 
dist travelling preacher in that country, for ten or fifteen 
year* back, who this man has not directly or indirectly assail- 
ed, and attempted to injure. And as many as five hi'j-hly 
respectable travelling preachers, have since certified that he 
had grossly slandered them, and their certificates have been 
twice published to the world. But to proceed. Previoua 
to my entrance into that country, my predecessor, viz: the 
preacher who had travelled there the year before, had been 
assailed, at the instance of this man, in an infamous little pub- 
lication, written by a little old apostate ivhig^ — an oiiicial 
member of the Baptist church — the very but-cut of original 
sin. To this publication, this circuit preacher felt himself 
bound to reply, and accordingly done so. Some two months 
after this, the old Baptist priest replied in a pamphlet of some 
size, and in this publication slandered a number of Methodist 
preachers, together with the doctrines, government, and gen- 



£60 A NARRATIVE 

cral pollly of the Methodist Episcopal Church. In the midst 
of this state of things, and upon the very heels of tliis con- 
troversy, as it were, I was appointed to this circuit; and the 
very next day after my arrival o^ tlie circuit, hefore I had 
even seen this preacher, he madp a violent attack upon my 
moral character, by circulating a most shameful, false, and 
injurious report. After a few weeks had passed away, I was 
advised to clear up the matter. I accordingly addressed the 
parson a note, asking him if he had circulated so and so, and 
if he had, to be so good as to give me his authority for so do- 
infr. Contrary to my expectation, he wrote me quite an eva- 
sive answer. I addressed him again. He then united with 
a little Hopkinsian physician, and they replied tome jointly, 
at the same time laying tl^e whole matter on an infamous ne- 
gro, giving him as the aumor of the report! ! ! Now, in my 
last communication to this clergyman, I scored him so diitji- 
l\ that it, togetiier with the report in the country, that 1 had 
used him up, led him to indict me before the grand jury, for 
a libel. — And it is \yorthy of remark, that this presentment 
was not made till in October, just a week before I left the cir- 
cuit for conference. And, it is also worthy of remark, that this 
minister, in order to become a witness against me, artfully in- 
troduced one of the members of his church, as the prosecu- 
tor in the case. Nor would the grand jury have found a true 
bill ac;aingt me at all, but for the fact, that this miserable old 
man, before them declared upon oath, that he liad never cir- 
culated a report concerning me, which should have come from 
a neoro, or provoked me in any way This fact, with many 
other important items relating to this lawsuit, I have long 
since substantially confirmed by a host of respectable certifi- 
cates, and published the same to the world, in as many as two 
different pamphlets. This unfortunate man, thought that 
this falsehood was deposed in secret, and that the jurors dared 
not divulge it, and that no ear heard it. He forgot that tlie 
eye of an omniscient God was upon him; and he little thought 
that the dark deeds of that hour, would ever be proclaimed 
to the world, througli the medium of the press ! Surely noth- 
ing short of an emetic from hell, could have forced him to 
vomit so base a falsehood, in the presence of Almighty God, 
and twelve honest men ! I should not WTite thus, but for the 
reckless, remorseless, and unrelenting manner in which this 
depraved set attacked, pursued, and persecuted me. For 
ministers of the gospel, and other professors of religion, who 
serve but one mastel-, manifesting their faith by their good 
works, I have a respect bordering on veneration; but for those 



or THE I^IFE, &C. 261 

libellers of the religion they profess, who, in the true spirit 
of him they serve, go about singing, praying, preaching, ly- 
ing, slandering, defrauding, and false swearing, I feel inex- 
pressible contempt. Nor shall their over-rated talejits or 
mock-dignity; or yet, their menaces of violence, screen 
them from the rebuke they have merited. As nothing more 
was done in this "suit at law," during this year, I will dismiss 
it for the present, and resume the subject again in the sequel. 
Thus it will be seen, that my labors on this circuit, were 
commenced, under auspices very unfavorable. 1 had ex- 
pected, on entering into the coves and mountains of this 
country, to have found an atmosphere entirely freed from the 
baneful influence of Calvinism, but alas! the hydra headed 
monster had reached the country before I did. Here it was, 
that I became more and more impressed with the conviction, 
that this doctrine is death to religion, and the prolific mother 
of human miseries. A whole Encyclopedia of wit, argu> 
ment, and abuse, could not more than do the subject justice. 
Here, too, in a good degree, I witnessed the dreadful effects 
of drunkenness, upon religious society. I here expelled se- 
veral of our members for this crime. As it respects the 
Baptists, custom seems to have licensed them to drink when 
they pleased; in so much, that it was no uncommon thing to 
see them, with impunity, staggering about, having their faces 
carbuncled with brandy! In vain may a minister leave his 
house and home, and encounter the inclement skies to build 
up believers, and .id minister relief to dying sinners, while 
they continue to pour fermenting liquors down their throats. 
And as already intimated, I was here more deeply convinced 
than ever, of the propriety of entering a solemn protest 
against so fearful an enormity, particularly as it threatens to 
overrun our country, and lay waste our churches. But, the 
reader will not regard me as saying, that the citizens of this 
section of country were all drunkards, or Calvinistic Baptists. 
The cause of Methodism was quite popular there; and the 
cause of temperance was daily gaining ground. There are 
some as worthy and honorable members of the Methodist 
church there, as I ever met with in any country. And I 
have a great many warm-hearted friends there, and I shall 
long carry with me the remembrance of the many kind favors, 
wishes, and feelings, I have received from them.— 1 trust I 
have not been and may not be ungrateful for them. 

During this year, I performed as many as three tours 
through what are called the Taxaway mountains, crossing the 
Blue ridge, and wandering along among the head branches of 



262 A NARRATIVE 

the southern water courses, on a sort of missionary excursion. 
Agriculture and the mechanic arts, were not in as high a state 
of cultivation there, as I supposed them to be in the States of 
Maryland and Pennsylvania; while there existed at least a 
shade oi difference between the inhabitants of those moun- 
tains, and the citizens of Philadelphia, so far as their man- 
ners and customs were concerned! 

Having been elected a delegate to the general conference, 
held in Philadelphia, in May, 1832, I set out from my circuit 
for the city, the last of March, via. Abingdon, Fincastle, 
Staunton, Fredericksburg, Washington and Baltimore. Upon 
my arrival in Abingdon, I was insulted and tongue-lashed by 
a people called Protestant Methodists^ who were there em- 
ployed in reforming from Episcopal Popery, for having dared 
to express my views of their system !" Here I found a parson 
C. of this order, whose flaming zeal in maintaining the doc- 
trines of ^'reform," led him to forge thunderbolts, and to pour 
out anathemas against despotism! This man was evidently 
actuated by a bad spirit, or a sordid interest, or a barbarous 
disposition to revenge, which animates most of i\\e Radicals 
as they are sometimes called, and produces all their pretended 
love of freedom. This town, once so harmonious, was now 
divided in religious opinion. And, as an emblem of the di- 
vision, two spires now pointed up to heaven in Abingdon; 
and two men, who styled themselves Methodists and minis- 
ters of Christ, preached to distmct congregations, and as all 
allow, resorted to moasures widely different in their tendency, 
in order to carry their points. But liere, as in most other 
places, where these sticklers for reform have caused a seces- 
sion from the mother church, the same has been found in re- 
ality, to have been an accession to it. 

At Evensham, some fifty miles beyond Abingdon, I was 
again charged on by the postmaster of that place, a sort of 
head man in the ranks of Protestant Methodism, who, as I 
was told after leaving there, published me in the Wj^the paper. 
But poor man! he has since been tucked up for robbing the 
mail, and that too of no small amount of money. Since that 
time, the latest advices from that country say, that his zeal in 
the cause of religion has greatly abated. 

On my way to Philadelphia, I spent a week in the city of 
Washington, in visiting the different parts of the city, and 
in listening to the debates in congress. While in Washing- 
ton, in company with some ten or a dozen clergymen, I visited 
the President's house, also, and was honored by an introduc- 
tion to Gen. Jackson. He had just recovered from a slight 



OF THE LIFE, &C. 265 

state of indisposition. He sat with Mr. Livingston, the then 
secretary of state, examining some papers, when we entered, 
and though paler than usual, i was struck with the fidelity of 
the common portraits I have seen of him. Alexander's, I 
think, however, is the best by far, and his reflection in the 
mirror is not more like him. He rose with a dignified cour- 
tesy to receive us, and conversed freely and agreeably; till, 
unfortunately, he bounced on the missionaries, who had 
crossed his views and feelings, in opposing the measures of 
Georgia and the general government. His whole appearance 
is im.posing and in the highest degree gentlemanly and pre- 
possessing. He is a very fine looking old man, though I left 
him with an unfavorable opinion of him. And though I 
dislike and disapprove of his administration, yet, I am free 
to confess, that if his face is an index of his character, he is 
an upright and a fearless man. But 1 have long since learned 
that it will not do to take men by their looks. 

I am no politician, but so far as I am capable of understand- 
ing what I read, I am a Jejfersonian Republican. 

From here I proceeded to Baltimore, where, in company 
with a number of the preachers, I remained for several days. 
While here, I preached to the^ convicts in the penitentiary, at 
the request of the preacher in charge of the station. And, 
while there, it occurred to me, that the Hopkinsians of Ten- 
nessee, had previously predicted that I would end my days 
in some such place, and that they would no doubt be some- 
what gratified to hear that I was then in the state prison of 
Maryland; and I accordingly sat down and communicated 
the information to a friend in Athens, who, as I was 
afterwards told, apprised them of the fact, without letting 
them know the circumstances under which I had gone there. 
Some of them rejoiced, and others mourned lest the report 
should not be true. While here, the keeper of the prison 
related to me an anecdote, which I cannot deny myself the 
pleasure of publishing It was this: Some time before that, 
two self-important young Presbyterian ministers, during the 
sitting of the presbytery in that city, visited the penitentiary; 
and while they were walking about viewing the prisoners at 
work, one of them said to the other, <'I suspect that if the 
truth were known, the most of these unfortunate creatures 
came here out of the Methodist church!" 

The keeper having heard this, and knowing who they were, 
determined to score them, if a suitable opportunity presented 
itself. Well, it was not long till one of them asked him if 
aay of the convicts had ever been members of any church, 



t6i A J^ARRATIVB 

&c. He answered in the affirmative. <'What church'^ en* 
quired the priest, *<vvere they members of?" Said the keeper, 
< *the most of them came here out of the Presbyterian church ! ! !" 
The result was, the young clergyman made no further en- 
quiries on the subject.'^ 

From Baltimore, I proceeded to Philadelphia, on board of 
a steam-boat, accompanied by some twenty-five or thirty 
Methodist preachers, delegates to the general conference. 
Here, I remained all the month of May. While in this city, 
I attended the anniversary of the American Sunday School 
Union. To a superficial observer, this would have been 
an interesting meeting; but I saw too much management to 
please me. 

While the Methodist general conference was sitting, the 
Presbyterian general assembly was in session likewise. I 
was present in the assembly, when they had the great doc- 
trinal question on the carpet — I mean the new school and old 
school divinity, or as some of them termed it, »^heresy" and 
* ^orthodoxy." The debate grew out of an appeal from the 
decision of a synod, to the general assembly, on the part of 
some new school men, for a division of the Philadelphia 
Presbytery. On this question a violent personal debate arose, 
which would, for intemperance of language and wholesale 
abuse of private character, absolutel)' disgrace the lowest por- 
ter house, or ale cellar, in the lowest place in the lowest town 
or city in the lowest country in the world. 

During the sitting of this assembly, and also of our con- 
ference, in the midst too of the debates of the former, I was 
invited to dine at the house of Alexander Cook, esq. in com- 
pany with the venerable bishop Roberts, Ezekiel Cooper, 
John P. Durbin, Francis A. Owen and others; and before the 
bell rang for dinner, while we were sitting together in the 
parlor, with several other persons, one of the company lifted 
a Presbyterian paper, just published, and read a brief sketch 
of the proceedings of the assembly, written by a member of 
that body, in which he stated that great peace and has- 

MONY PREVAILED AMONG THEM, AND THAT THEY HAD INDU- 
BITABLE EVIDENCE THAT THE LORD WAS WITH THEM ! 

Bishop Roberts then enquired of me to know, smiling at 
the same time, howl would reconcile that statement with the 
account myself and others had given of their debates. I re- 
plied, that I supposed the writer did not use the term.s peace 
and hartnony^ in their most common acceptations, and that on 
this ground there Was no discrepancy in our statements; and 
that as to the Lord being present, the writer could prove by 



Ol- THK LIFE, See. 2eS 

ttie, th^t John Lord, one ot ourdelegation from New-Eno-land 
a very tall fine looking man too, was present and heard'' their 
debates and that it was possible the writer alluded to him» 
iiut said I, if he meant to say that the good Lord of heaven 
and earth was with them, he was certainly mistaken 

^ow, that an omnipresent God was there, in the sense in 
which he IS m every part of creation, no man who believes 
the scriptures will doubt; but that the Almighty was there to 
^auction and approve their jarring affections, malevolent 
wishes, broils and contentions, discordant voices, hard names 
and confusion, is impossible. I would say that a bein- of 
revengeful and depraved passions, slightly varnished over 
xvith hypocrisy, dissimulation, and the various forms of no- 
liteness which prevail in parliamentary usages and debates 
presided over the assembly; and the spirit which evidently 
stimulated and excited them to action, and the horrible and 
extensive effects produced by their inflammatory debates 
bear me out in this supposition. ' 

They called other ^^hereiics,^^ and gave other the ^^//e-" 
and indeed, one of the members of the assembly called Dr 
Ely an ^^um^egenerate heretic!^^ And in vain the moderal 
tor attempted to reconcile them. During the heat of their 
debate, the moral atmosphere surrounding the place, became 
so tainted, that it was fatal to dignity, re?pectabilit;and vTr! 
tue, to breathe it. And, they must alter their manner of 
conducting their controversies in the general assembly, if 
they would turn our ^^moral wilderness'' into a paradise of 
national, social, and domestic happiness. In one word, there 
have never been just such signs in the Presbyterian zodiac, 

Z"L fiT S' "^ r'"' ^"^^ '^^ night when Samuel 
Adams, and John Hancock, caused the tea to be thrown over- 
Wdm the harbor of Boston! I confess, for one, thla 
entertained a hope, that the system would soon be discom- 
titted slain and buried, till the general judgment at least 
and then finally, completely, and iLtrievaily^an'hllated ! ' 
1832. — rhis year, our conference held its annual session in 
Evensham m western Virginia. Bishop Emory presided. 
At this conference I was appointed to the Tugalovv circuit, 
lymg mostly m the district of Pickens, South Carolina, ok 
this circuit, I was enabled to effect but very little in a moral 
point of view, it being overrun with Baptists. Though I had 
no controversy with the Baptists this year, I had the pleasure 
01 preaching with their greatest man Mr -, more than 

If by the term g^reat preacher, be understood the fermen= 



2^4 A ITAIIBATIV* 

tations of a roving brain, parodox united to a depraved taste, 
unceasing apostrophes, exclamations, obscure hyperboles;—* 
in a word, if a style inflated with extravagant metaphors, in- 
dicates greatness in a preacher, then indeed was this a mighty 
man! And if sterile ideas clothed with a redundancy of im- 
proper words, accumulated substantives, crowded epithets, 
rapid contradictions, repetitions re-echoed, abundance of 
synonymous words, and unceasing contrasts, constitute true 
eloquence, then does this man stand unrivalled as an ora- 
tor! 

This was a very cold winter; and the water courses kept 
up till late in the spring. I swam the Tugalow river four 
times during this winter, besides the large creeks, &c. More 
than once, after swimming those water courses, I preached in 
open meeting houses, with my clothes froze on me! At one 
time, in swimming the river, when it was very full, I was 
driven below the ford by the strength of the current, and had 
like to have never reached the land again. Indeed I was in 
a squirrel's jump of the good world ! 

Here I learned, that ?zw///y?cr//zow is emphatically death to 
religion. The churches were all enveloped in the smoke of 
faction. The Presbyterian and Baptist clergy, in this coun- 
try, volunteered to support the ordinance, and preached ex- 
pressly on nullification, declaring that it was both scriptural 
and right! Having received a new commission from heaven, 
or elsewhere, to *^Go into all the world and preach nullifica- 
Hon to every creature;" like the followers of Mahomet, and 
not like the disciples of Jesus, whose duty it is to preach 
peace and good will to mankind, they carried the alcoran of 
nullification in one hand, and the sword in the other, saying 
to the people, ^^choose ye this day whom ye will serve. If 
nullification be God serve it, and if submission to the law 
of the land be God, then follow it." A Baptist minister in 
Greenville district, just above where I travelled, made the 
discovery, that nullification was the <^quintescence of reli- 
gion," and that "Jesus Christ himself was a nullifier! !" Dif- 
ferent Presbyterian ministers preached sermons on the sub- 
ject, and some of them had their discourses published in 
pamphlet form, and circulated among the people, at large. 
In some Baptist congregations where the union party was the 
strongest, motions were submitted to exclude nullifiersffrom 
the pale of the church. I'he Methodist preachers, with few 
exceptions, were not guilty of such improprieties. As to 
Calvinistic ministers, they have both precept and example 
in their churches, for nullification. John Calvin, in the cases 



or THB XIPS, &c. 



3«r 



of Servetus and Castellio, nullijied that law of God which 
says, "Thou shalt not /nil. " * "" 

The nullifiers throughout the country, distinguished them- 
selves by wearing a cockade on their hats, made of blue rib- 
bon Even the ioys, not free from the apron strings of their 
mothers, had them displayed in bold relief, and in the true 
style of chivalry. Some of the union party, however bv 
way of contempt, fastened the cockade to the necks of their 
aogs. And I heard much said of a certain little bobtail fiste 
inoneof the county towns, havingthe cockade upon the tip 
end of h,s tail, trottmg about the streets, and thus carrying 
nullification "sky-high!" Surely, Don Quixotte himself 
would have charged a dozen windmills, and broken, a hundred 
lances, and fought a kingdom of giants for such a bado-e' 

A vast number of the common people, or peasantry,1eft the 
state; and if many of those who held land and other property, 
c<,uld have disposed of it, on anything like reasonable terms 
they would have fled from the "peaceful remedy" as fast and 
as thick as did the darts in the Trojan war 

But as it regards this thing called nullification, 1 find scrip- 
ture both >• and agaimf it. When the Babylonian king 
passed a law not warranted by the law of God, Shadrach, 
Meshach and Abednego, nullified it at the hazard of their 
lives, and were by the power of God successful. Darius, 
afterwards king of the Medes and Persians, trying a simila^ 
project had his hws nu/lijed at the peril of his life— he 
succeeded, and his enemies were destroyed, and the power 
and majesty of God in both instances was spread over the im- 
mense realms of those potentates. 

But there are other cases, in which nullification was attend- 
ed with the worst ol consequences. In the garden of Eden 
our first parents were induced by the devil, in the form of the 
serpent, to ««//|/y the law of God and taste the forbidden 
fruit; and believing it to be a "peaceful remedy," they made 
the 'expertment" C^rn, in the case of his brother Abel, 
nulh^ed the law of God, for which he received a black mark 
in h>s forehead ! A nation of Jews who perished in the siege 
at Jerusalem, were M nullifiers. So were the wretched 
.nhabitan^of Sodof^ and Gom^rah. And the in^dHuv an' 
for their South Carolina politics, were all baptized byimmer' 

ORDINANCE into effect, got drowned in the Red Sea. And 
had the South Caroling nullifiers gone a little further with 



268 



X KARRATITE 



For my own part, I think it best to obey the injunction of 
St. Paul, who says, ^'Let every soul be subject unto the higher 
power, for there is no power but of God. The powers that 
be are ordained of God, whosoever therefore resisteth the 
power, resisteth the ordinance of GOD, and they that resist 
shall receive to themselves damnation.'' 

During this year, I visited the Telulee Falls, in Habersham 
county, Georgia. The revolutions on our earth, by which its 
original appearance has been so repeatedly changed, together 
with the manner in which nature has embellished the tempora- 
ry residence of man, have, at all times, commanded the at- 
tention, and excited the astonishment of the learned. These 
traces of desolation have always acted on the human mind; 
and the traditions of deluges, preserved among almost every 
people, are derived from the different phenomena, and the 
great variety of marine productions scattered over the earth. 
But, we can never learn much on a subject so extensive, so 
very remote, and so wonderful. I have been in different 
States in the Union, and have looked with peculiar delight 
upon the order, harmony, and beauty of the works of crea- 
tion in each; but never have 1 witnessed a scene which struck 
my mind with such profound awe, and so completely filled 
me with admiration of the infinite skill of the great Archi- 
tect of nature. These falls are situated twelve miles from 
Clarkesville, thecounty seat of Habersham, on the Telulee riv- 
er, abeautiful stream indeed, which meandersthrough the hills, 
dales, vallies,and piney woods, till it loses itself in the great 
Savannah. These falls, for several years past, have been a 
place of great resort, especially with the lowlanders, who, 
for their health, spend the summer in this "hill country.'' 
And I have to regret, that I do not possess a more lively and 
acute genius, that I might give a more graphic and interest- 
ing description of them. The scene is said, in point of 
grandeur, to be superior to that at Niagara, by some who 
have visited both. But as I have never seen the falls of Ni- 
agara, I will not vouch for the truth of this statement. Iwill 
say, however, that it is difficult to form even a tolerable idea 
of this stupendous cataract without visiting and examining it. 
And even then it is not easy to bring the imagination to em- 
brace the magnitude of the scene. For some distance above 
rolls the gentle stream, almost without wave or ripple to dis- 
turb the tranquility of its bosom, till, all of a sudden, sweep- 
ing along to the dreadful precipice, leaping from rock to rock, 
gathering all its energies, it plunges into the awful abyss be- 
low. 



OF THE XIFE, &C. 269 

Where the water falls, and between the blufifs on either 
side, there is such an astonishing chasm, as, viewed from 
above, strikes the beholder with terror! Down this chasm 
the water rushes with a surprising velocity, after its first and 
most tremendous pitch, which is a fall of some considerable 
distance, though not perpendicular. The pitch of the whole 
body of water produces a tremendous sound which maybe 
heard at some distance. The dashing of the water also pro- 
duces a mist which rises to a great height. And some small 
distance below, the water, the waves, and the foam, have 
quite a grand appearance indeed. The eye of an observant 
mind must rest, mdeed, with peculiar delight on the structure 
of these falls, viewing them as a matchless display of Al- 
mighty power. To be in sight of these falls, at this season 
of the year, upon an adjacent eminence, surrounded by an 
extensive field, handsomely interspersed w^ith timber; where 
one can inhale the balmy zephyrs, charmed with the splendor 
of the sun, and the variegated coloring spread over the face 
of the countr}'', and then, in the midst of this grandeur, let 
the rich harmony of a choir of feathered songsters come 
pealing on the ear, and certainly no heart can be so dead to 
feeling, as to resist the charms. 

I am told by those who have visited them amidst wintry 
storms, clouds, rain, and fog, when a dense, hazy atmos- 
phere, surcharged with watery exhalations, hangs all around, 
that the scene is awfully grand. 

If the traveller, in crossing the mountains to or from the 
south, will take the trouble to call in and see these falls, he 
may see the works of nature on a scale of magnitude and 
grandeur which it will be highly gratifying to behold and in- 
vestigate, and which will raise to the highest pitch his con- 
ceptions of the magnificence and glory of film, whose works 
are very truly '^great and marvellous!'^ He will feel within 
him a burning desire to reach that eternal world of joy, 
where the redeemed shall acquire a more minute and coaipre- 
heuslve view of the attributes of the Deity, and of the con- 
nections, relations, and dependencies, of the vast physical 
and moral system over which his government extends. 

Decision of the law-suit. — Having gave security, at 
the time I was first presented, for my appearance at the' en- 
suing superior court, I returned from the south, to North 
Carolina, in February, in this year, and took out subpoenas 
for the witnesses by whom I intended to make good the char- 
ges alledged in the bill of indictment. Well, I came on to 
court; and on Monday, the first day of court, my counsel de- 
x2 



£70 AirAJRKATIVE 

manded atrial, and continued to do so everyday, till thelast 
evening of court, when, just at night, it was granted. The 
reason why a trial could not be had sooner, was, that the hill 
which had been drawn up at the. former court, and which I 
was then prepared to answer to, was found to be defective, or 
such an one as I would blow up; and hence, a neiv bill was 
drawn up, and a new presentment made to the jury, and a 
new plan of arrangements adopted. And what is more 
strange than all, the state (for this was a state case) nullified 
this bill, and the state forced me to pay the cost of the same, 
though I was ready for trial ! The like never was heard of 
before!! 

In this last bill of indictment, there were three specifica- 
tions, of which the following was considered the most im- 
portant: — '*But sir, I am constrained to believe, that you are 
so destitute of feeling, so blind to the beauties of religion, so 
hacknied in crime, and so lost to all sense of honor and 
shame, — that notwithstanding your faculties still enable you 
to continue your sordid pursuits, they will not permit you to 
feel any remorse, or acknowledge your errors.'^ To support 
this charge, I had various respectable witnesses present to 
prove the man a liar, a slanderer, and a defrauder; and after 
doing so, I intended to infer, according to scripture and rea- 
son, that he was what I had represented him to be. I knew 
very well, that no man in his sober senses, would swear posi- 
tively, that he was dead in sins and trespasses, and lost to all 
sense of honor and shame; but I simply supposed that upon mak- 
ing out this proof, the conclusion would be inevitable. And in- 
deed, 1 afterwards procured the certificates of nineteen 
respectable men, eight of whom were ministers of the gos- 
pel, proving him to be this kind of a man, and published them 
to the world, as before stated. 

Upon failing to get witnesses to swear to the man's heart. 
my counsel submitted the case without any pleading, and I 
was fined five dollars. 

But it is worthy of notice, that this man, in going to law, 
instead of bringing an action of slander, indicted me for a 
libel. His motive for acting thus, was, he had been told that 
in an action for slander, the truth of the words spoken, or 
written, affords a complete justification, which is seldom the ^ 
case in an indictment for a libel. Besides, an action of 
slander wpuld have enabled me as defendant, to defend my 
own character, and attack his more successfully, than the ^igid 
rules which govern an indictment for a libel would allow of. 
For, in this state, the British doctrine of libelling is inCor- 



or THE LIFE, &C. 271 

porated in the constitution; and the laws enacted on the sub- 
ject in Old England, were, for the most part, intended for the 
protection of the king, and when explained amount to this — 
the greater the truth, the greater the libel. So that, had the 
once intended scheme of the parliament of Great Britain, to 
pass a bill, which denied to persons accused on a criminal 
account the privilege of defending themselves by the help of 
counsel, been here carried out and acted upon, I could have 
sustained no additional injury by it. For, under the regula- 
tions which governed this indictment, the legal knowledge of 
a Blackstone, or a Mansfield, combined with the eloquence of 
Lord Bollingbroke and Charles Fox, would have been of no 
serrice to me. Now, under the laws which govern an in- 
dictment for a libel, David and Solomon, were they on earth, 
might be charged and convicted for having libelled the whole 
human race. David has said, ^^all men are liars,^^ and 
Solomon has said, Hhere are none good.^^ Now deprive 
the former of the testimony of an inspired prophet, who, 
speaking of the human family, as soon as they are born, savs, 
'Hhey go astray speaking lies,^' and he could not sustain the 
charge. Well, deprive the latter of the scripture proofs of 
general depravity, and he would make a complete failure 
likewise. And here I will remark, for your information 
reader, that if ever you are disposed to select a legal remedy 
in a case of this kind, and your general character is bad, in- 
dict for a libeL and not for slander; for, if you do, your op- 
ponent will be allowed to investigate your character from your 
youth up. And, if you should ever conclude to sue for your 
character, and it is not better than that of this man, sue for a 
new one, and not for the one you have! 

But, when a man is indicted for a libel, and is found guilty 
and taxed with the cost, the idea goes out among the ignorant 
arid uninformed, that he signed a libel, — an instrument of 
writing in which he acknowledges himself to be a liar, &c. 
And this has been said of me, both in Carolina and Tennes- 
see, by the ignorant and malicious ministers and members of 
the Baptist church. But it is all as /a/^e, as its numerous 
authors are infamous. Nor ami anxious for those who are 
not accustomed to think for themselves, or the corrupt, or 
those who are under the influence of trained and active in- 
triguers, to entertain any other view of the subject. The 
majesty of truth will command the reverence of the candid-— 
those who refuse to comply with its stern demands, can peace- 
ably enjoy their own opinions. 

Were I disposed to do so, I might give the public a disser- 



272 ANARRATIYE 

tation on the posse comitatus, equally as ponderous, as that 
with which Lord North furnished the I3ritish House of Com- 
mons? 

I will, however, only say, that there has never been such a 
trial, since the trial of William Penn, before the court of Old 
Bailey, in England, for preaching to the Quakers in the 
streets of London; and, for his controversy with the Baptists 
and Catholics. Perhaps, I might except the trial of John 
Wesley at Savannah, in 1737; and, more recently, the trial of 
Lorenzo Dow, in Charleston. Dow was indicted fo»' a libel; 
and although he plead the truth of the alles;ations in justi- 
Jication, and rested his defence solely upon this plea-, he 
was nevertheless, convicted, and the sentence of the law was 
that of a fined.x\i\ imprisonment! 

A few remarks in relation to the cost of this suit, and I 
have done for the present. Having lost the suit, as a matter 
of course, it fell to my lot to pay the cost. The legal cost 
of the suit, amounted to quite a trifle, there being only /?^»o 
witnesses on the part of the prosecution, and but few of those 
whom I had subpoened, who proved their attendance. But, 
on my return to that country, I learned that a third person, 
not known in the suit, had summoned a host of old Baptist 
witnesses, who, after court had adjourned, and I had paid 
most of the legal cost and left there, went forward and proved 
their attendance!! These witnesses were summoned for no 
other purpose under the sun, but to create cost; and as evi- 
dence of this, they were never called into court, nor was it 
known to me that they were there as witnesses ! ! ! Well, on 
Sabbath, in the month of June, about five miles from the 
court house, while I was at church, in company with my 
presiding elder, William Patton, and the circuit preacher, 
Stephen W\ Earnest, a corrupt and inexperienced deputy 
sheriff, seized upon me for this illegal cost! 

To satisfy the demands of this extra-judicial claim, on the 
next morning, I gave the officer an elegant dun mare, saddle, 
bridle, saddle-bags, and umbrellaj all of which he disposed 
of in short order. 

How true the remark of an eminent writer: *'he that op- 
poseth hell, may expect hell's rage.'^ Surely their conduct 
savors more of that of an Algerine banditti, than of a body 
of civilized men — not to say christians. And surely, in tra- 
versing the vast continent of America, in wandering over the 
barren plains of inhospitable Denmark, through honest Swe- 
den, and frozen Lapland, rude and churlish Finland, unprin- 
cipled Russia, and the wide- spread regions of the wandering 



OF THB I»IFE, &Cr 273 

Tartars. I shall never have to encounter a more savage and 
unprincipled set! With but very few exceptions, the whole, 
pack are steeped to the very chin in corruption, living upon 
iU wages, and pandering to its purposes. They are shrouded 
in the sack-cloth and ashes of shame and disgrace, and en^ 
closed in vaults full of buried venality. Like the fabled 
apples on the shore of the Dead Sea, they are fair without, 
but ashes within. They are daily accustomed to low and 
dirty contemplations, and familiarized by habit to the most 
filthy and mistaken views of truth. 

Their abominable impurities — their enormous injustice — 
their profanation of holy things — their contempt of the Su- 
preme Being — their rancor and animosity — their hypoeritical 
irtiftces — their dark designs and insidious calumnies, if un- 
repented lor, will one day seize upon them, and burit them 
with the most inexpressible anguish. 

But public opinion has long since sealed the fate of these 
miserable offenders, and they have well nigh perished amidst the 
universalexecrationsof an honest community; while the winds 
of heaven have wafted the dying shrieks of their flimsy char- 
acters, from the shores of time to the distant vaults of merited 
oblivion! Still, I would pray Omnipotence, in the dying 
language of Stephen, who, when a similar set were mangling 
his body with stones, said, <<Lord, lay not this sin to their 
charge.'' But as sure as that moral justice is not a fiction, 
when the day of retribution shall come, and the unclouded 
light of eternity dawns upon the disordered chaos of all human 
concerns, it will be seen that, throughout, this was a shameful 
transaction, on the part of these my inquisitorial accusers. 
For, never before, perhaps, has a case occurred within the 
compass of the whole civilized world, in which the laws in- 
tended for the protection of personal rights, have been so 
openly and basely set at defiance, and have proved, in prac- 
tice, so entirely inadequate to their object. The judge, many 
of whose relations are Baptists, before and after he came to 
court, declared he would put it to me, or words to this 
amount. And the attorney general, before the court, repre- 
sented me as a foreigner, having come into the country and 
made the attack upon the plaintiff! This is carrying out the 
doctrine of state rights much further, than even contenderl 
for by South Carolina; for if a member of the Hartford Con- 
vention, were to settle within her limits, she would allow 
him all the privileges of a bona fide juredivino citizen. This 
is indeed state restrictions, instead oi state rights. In mat- 
ters of controversy in Tennessee, this primogeniture cili- 



STt A KABBATIVE 

zenshtp is not taken in4o the account. The laws of Braco^ 
were the very quintescence of justice and mercy, if compared 
with this inexplicable system of judicial ethics! 

The most infamous culprit is entitled to the benefit of a fair 
and impartial trial; and no individual, however talented or 
high in office, should be allowed to assume to himself th^ 
office of judge, jury and executioner, all at the same time. 

The following extract from Volney^s Ruins; or, Meditation 
on the Revolutions of Empires,'^ upon the * 'Universal basis 
of all Right and all Law," contains an excellent view of the 
origin of all justice and of all right: — 

« 'Whatever be the active power, the moving cause that 
governs the universe, since it has given to all men the same 
sensations, and the same wants, it has thereby declared that it 
has given to all the same right to the use of its treasures, and 
that all men are equal in the order of nature. Secondly, 
since this power has given to each man the necessary means 
of preserving his own existenc«j, it is evident that it has con- 
stituted them all independent one of another; — that it ha^ 
created them free; — that no man is subject to another; — 
that each is absolute proprietor of his own person. Equali- 
ty and LIBERTY are therefore two essential attributes of 
man." 

In conclusion, all who are not too deeply rooted and ground- 
ed in error, to be convinced by reason and argument, will be 
perfectly satisfied with this account of this part of my lifOi 
The people of Carolina, who are well acquainted with the 
parties and circumstances under consideration, are the best 
judges, and with them rests the verdict, which will be award- 
ed for or against the proper person. For my own part, I do 
not feel daunted in the least degree, in view of their decision; 
nor have I at all been annoyed because of the vile and scur- 
rilous abuse of party, and of sectarian venom which have 
been poured upon me. And I shall go on in the bold, but 
even tenor of my way, and perform the duties I owe to Godj 
to my conscience, and to the church of which I have the honor 
to be both a member and a minister. I have but little ambi- 
tion to gratify, no private ends to answer, and no desire but 
tlie good of the whole human family: and while public and 
private scandal, secret malice, and all the baser passions of 
the human heart are brought to bear against me, I shall stand 
firm and steady, and endeavor by the assistance of God, to 
walk worthy of the vocation to which it has pleased God and 
the church to call me. As an individual, my reputation is 



untarnished: and all the worst occurences of my life, are 
herewith submitted to the world. 

The great body, both of the membership and ministry, in 
the Methodist Episcopal Churchy for many miles round, 
know me — and they know me well; and those who live at a 
distance, are well enough acquainted with Methodism to know, 
that no man of a suspicious character would be continued in 
the travelling connexion, or sent by an Annual Conference, 
to labor on any circuit, station or district. And the Journals 
of the Holston Annual Conference will shew, that a charge 
of immorality has never been brought against me and sustain- 
ed, since I have been a member of said Conference. 

Indeed ministerial character, like female virtue, should 
challenge scrutiny; and with the fearlessness of conscious up- 
rightness and purity, recoil not at the severest and most try- 
ing ordeal. 

1833. — This year our Conference met at Kingsport, in the 
month of November. Bishop Roberts attended, but owing 
to bad health, did not preside more than a part of two days. 
Our esteemed brother, Thomas Wilkerson, by the appoint- 
ment of the Bishop, presided the remainder of the session. 
At this conference, I was appointed to travel alone on the Dan- 
dridge circuit, a three weeks circuit, lyingin the fork, between 
the Holston and French Broad rivers. 

In the commencement of this year, we had some encour- 
agement Our first quarterly meeting was very interesting; 
but considerations of a highly important character prevented 
the progress of the work in the latter part of the year. On 
this circuit, as on several other circuits, I had to expel some 
malcontents from the pale of our communion. 

Some of these miscreants immediately set about the work 
of raising a party, and of destroying the societies of which 
they had been members; but fortunately for the cause of 
Methodism, they could get but few disciples to aid them in 
this fiend-like work. And although the few followers they 
did muster up, made it their business to cry daily, ^^Great is 
Diana of the\Ephesians!^' — '^unfairness of triaV-f- 
'^snap judgment, ^^ &c. they were unable to effect any th/ng 
save their own disgrace. And although they were unt^ng 
in their efforts, yet it should seem to me, that a conscious 
inability to defend a cause so weak, and to sustain a position 
so notoriously at varianxse withevery thing like truth, should 
have calmed them down losife/ice. Poor unfortunate crea- 
tures! they didnot even act und^rstandiogl^, in reference to 
their -own interest Eyery struggle Ihey^ nmde to inwjlve 



\i 



g76 A NARRATIVE 

others and extricate themselves, only made their condition 
worse. By this time, I presume they are prepared to adopt 
the sentiment, that man's whole life is hwi school hoiu^s; this 
world a great university; and the vicissitudes of time his 
precept or i 

The Meteoric Phenomenon accounted for ! — Be- 
tween five and six o'clock on Wednesday morning, Nov. 13, 
1833, it will long be recollected by thousands, that one of the 
most beautiful phenomena ever seen by the eye of man, ap- 
peared in the heavens. This extraordinary phenomena, con- 
sisted of a great number of what are vulgarly called shoot- 
ing sturSj which, from common centres, appeared to be 
shooting in every direction, except upwards, radiating the 
whole heavens, by leaving a streak of mild light on the un- 
sullied blue. This occurred during my first round on the 
,Dandridge circuit. And while many were wrapped in won- 
der and delight, in contemplating the mild sublimity and 
glory of the millions of lines of light which Were gradually 
appearing and disappearing in succession, during the contin- 
uance of this most beautiful of all celestial phenomena, others 
were seriously alarmed. Some predicted that the end of all 
things was just at hand; or that the prophetic period had ar- 
rived, «in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great 
noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat," — and 
-when *nhe earth also and the works that are therein shall be 
burned up!" And some thought that, in the language of the 
General Epistle of Jude, they were "wanderingstars,to whom 
is reserved the blackness of darkness forever!" Others 
thought the meteors ominous of war; and some of one thing, 
^nd some of another. While, to cap the climax, some know- 
ing ones among the Baptists, who, I suppose, were disposed 
to account for this prodigy in nature, solely on philosophic 
principles, said it was a sign of the downfall of the Metho- 
dists!!! 

But, soon after this occurrence, a company of females met 
at a quilting, in the bounds of a circuit I once travelled, and 
while they were wondering, and guessing, and prophesying, 
&?.. with regard to the cause of this wonder of wonders, a 
Hopkinsian lady remarked, <">the whole matter has been oc- 
casioned by the death of JBrownlowf ^'What!" exclaimed 
another, <<is it possible that Brownlow is dead!" "Yes," 
replied this sister Phebe of Cenchrea, ''he has been dead 
several weeks; and by tight squeezing he made out to get to 
heaven; but he had been there no time scarcely till he raised 
« fuss, and was running about all over the good world taking 



or THE LIFE, &,C. 277 

Certificates to clear himself; and it took such hard work to 
get him out of Heaven, that it set the stars to falling! !" 
This, after my acknowledged and known dexterity in 
writing pamphlets, and in using up Hopkinsian missionaries 
and Sunday school agents, by certificates, I frankly confess, 
had like to have plagued me. May this good hearted humor- 
ous sister, when she gets to heaven, in-obedience to the apos- 
tle's injunction, bridle that unruly member, the tongue, and 
not meet with a similar defeat, is, I believe, about all the harm 
I wish her. And in the mean time, should I be so fortunate 
as to get te heaven again, the next time I die, I will try and 
be more on my guard. 

Query: From the circumstance of my having been cast 
«^out of heaven," must I not have gotten there, upon Dr. 
Hopkins's principles of nd4,ural ability) Certainly 1 must. 
For the scriptures say, all who get there by grace, thiough 
faith m the Son of God, ''go out no more.'' And if all who 
go there on this principle, are in danger of being driven out, 
had not the most of the Hopkinsians now living, better do 
their ^'first works over" again? Indeed, editor Hoyt, of the 
parish of Maryville, in publishing his philippics soon after 
this occurrence, in common with other editors, remarked, 
that on a certain morning, '^a phenomena appeared in the 
heavens, which greatly alarmed the inhabit ants F'—ih^t is, 
the inhabitants of Heaven; for he makes a full stop after the i 
word inhabitants. 

Now, brother Hoyt would have his readers believe, that 
the inhabitants of the good world were as '^greatly alarmed" 
on seeing the meteors, as were i\\Q pious priests and Levites 
of Maryville, on hearing that the Cholera was in West Ten- 
nessee! And, I suppose, that if the priests themselves had 
not been ^ ^greatly alarmed," they would have taken the ad- 
vantage of the occasion, as they did in the case of the Cho- 
lera, and thereby produced another ^^great revival" of reli- 
gion! 

But, if any of the inhabitants of heaven were alarmed on 
the morning of the memorable thirteenth of November, they 
must have been Hopkinsians-, for sure I am, that no persons 
who have gone there deigratia, have ever been alarmed at an 
occurrence which could be accounted for purely on principles 
of philosophy. For, from the very constitution of the human 
mmd, It is evident, that every branch of science is reco«-- 
nized and fully understood by the righteous, in the blessed 
world above us. 

If the considerations now adduced be admitted to have any 



278 A NARRATIVE 

force, and if the position I have endeavored to establish, can* 
not be overthrown, either on scriptural or rational grounds 
—it must follow, I think, that brother Hoyt is altogether 
mistaken. But who informed him that the inhabitants of 
heaven were alarmed? I am conscious of not having reported 
such a thing on my return to earth. He must have gotten his 
information from this sagacious lady! 

Upon the whole, I have much reason to rejoice and give 
thanks for what I heard, and seen, and felt, during this year, 
and to regret that any circumstance should have occurred to 
prevent greater good from being done. But my regrets, 
though profound, shall be temperate and resigned, as one who ;; 
mourns over a dispensation of Providence which seems to i 
have been inevitable, and has been mercifully delayed far be- ) 
yondwhati could have expected. Deep, sincere, and lasting, 
will be these sensations, and mingled with them, the consola- '' 
lory reflection, that I was acting correctly, and to the best of n 
my pbilities, endeavoring to promote the cause of truth. 

Dandridge, and the country round about, in a moral point 
of view, is a cold, unhealthy, damp and foggy region! When 
in this region, I felt pretty much as I suppose Job did, when 
in the hands of the enemy. The Hopkinsians of this region, 
are fully as hostile to Methodism, as any set 1 ever in^et with. 
When they speak of the Methodists, they do it without cere- 
I mony. They constantly appoint opposition meetings, to 
keep their members from attending Methodist meetings. In ; 
short, they oppose Methodism in every way; and latterly, j 
they have opposed it under a false pretence of friendship, by ,^. 
endeavoring to persuade some of our own members that they J 
feel a deep concern for our prosperity ! ^' 

Whenever they could hear of any one that had fallen out ■";' 
with 7ne, or who had any slang to retail concerning me, they ;^ 
would flock to, and hang around such an one, like famished ^',; 
calves around a parent cow! |J 

In a word, their employment during this year, with here 
and there an exception, was, to either ruminate upon the 
rugged hills of malice, or to skulk about in the hollow caverns 
of falsehood, in pursuit of those whom they sought to devour. 
And yet, after death, they expect to go to heaven. It is de- 
voutly hoped they may. But the heaven to which they are 
now journeying, I fear, is a dreadful place, the geographical 
location of which is no where, and whose tenants are the hag- 
gard phantoms of an over-heated imagination! 

"The Lord, the Judge, his churches warns j 
Let hypocrites attend and fear, 



OF THE XIFE, &C. S79 

Who place their hopes in rites and forms. 
But make not faith nor love their care. 

Wretches! they dare rehearse his name. 

With lips of falsehood and deceit; 
A friend or brother they defame, 

And soothe and flatter those they hate." 

Tiiis year, at the request of the editor of the New-Market 
Telegraph, I wrote several articles for publication in his pa- 
per — none of them were controversial. I wrote over the sig- 
nature of <^An Observer;'^ and as it was not known who the 
writer was, most of those articles- were quite popular w^ith the 
Hopkinsians. But 1 felt confident that they would not be 
received, if they knew who the writer was. Hence, I deter- 
mined to make an experiment. I wrote an article headed, 
•^THERE IS A GOD," and endeavored to sustain the position by 
adducing the evidences oi nature, reason^ Si-ndi revelation, 
making known at the same time time that I was the author. 
WelL as strange as it may seem, I heard of two or three per- 
sons^vhp objected to the article, and espoused the opposite 
side'^f the question, saying in effect, that there was no god! 
During the month of June, in this year, a most vulgar, abu- 
sive, and shameful publication, appeared against me in the 
New-Market Telegraph, entitled a ^ ^Protest, '^ and having the 
signature of a poor miserable creature tacked on to it, equally 
destitute of character and standing. But, I did not let myself 
down, in a formal way, to answer the publication under con- 
sideration; and some supposed, from this consideration, that 
I admitted the allegations it contained to be true. The truth 
is, however, I did not wish to wage either a defensive or 
offensive war with a misnomer. Nor can I condescend here- 
after, to notice in any way, any thing emanating from any 
such source, unless a voucher, or endorser of some note can 
be found to father what may appear. However, it has since 
been discovered, that this production was written by a Hop- 
kinsian clergyman, and that the real author had only made a 
caVs paw of this miserable creature, whose name accom- 
panies the same. The author of the piece, however, very 
artfully introduced a quantity of bad spelling, and sorry 
punctuation; and in numbers, he generally confounded the 
singular with the plural, and but seldom used the proper 
tense, intending thereby to influence the community to believe, 
that his relative had written it sure enough. 

Early in the month of August, in this year, a small circu- 
lar made its appearance against me, purporting to be an ap- 
peal to the ^^obristian public/*^ coming from the meridian of 



280 A NARRATIYE 

Western Carolina, and having the names of seventeen men 
annexed thereunto. This miserable thing was afterwards 
published in tliue "Christian Index, and Baptist Miscellany,'' 
a religious paper published in Washington Georgia, a few 
copies of which found their way into Tennessee, and were 
read with great avidity by the ignorant Baptists, and mali- 
cious Hopkinsians of my acquaintance. This circular, or 
^ ''half- sheet ^'' as it has since been denominated, was intended 
to be a reply to a pamphlet I published thirteen months before 
its appearance, consisting of thirty-six octavo pages. Some 
few of the signers of this document, incline to the Hopkin- 
sians; others of them are the oldest and most bigotted mem- 
bers of the Baptist church in that country; and others of them, 
as the saying is, lean towards the Baptists. And six out of 
the seventeen, are the relatives of the Baptist preacher with 
whom I had the law-suit! In short, I have recently learned, 
that only one man out of the seventeen can be considered, in 
any respect, friendly to the Methodist church; and this poor 
little man permitted the Baptists to make a tool of him, in 
order to accomplish some political ends. In proof of their 
opposition to the Methodist church, they style the Metho- 
dists in that country a ^ ^lawless mobP' As to the number of 
names attached to this circular, I care not for this circum- 
stance. For had the writer written ten times as much more, 
and had it been ten times as slanderous as it is, these men 
would have stuck their paws to it. And if the Ji7^m will yet 
take the pains to come to Tennessee, they may fmd one hun- 
di^ed persons, who will either certify or swear, any thing 
against me, their malice and ingenuity may dictate. Still, I 
st^nd as fair, and have as many friends in Tennessee as I de- 
sire to have. But these certifiers never advance an argu- 
ment in their production. Take for example the following 
sentence: — "The evidence is so caricatured, that it is impossi- 
ble for any person to understand, from the reading of his 
.pamphlet, any thing in truth about the matter! ! !'' Now it is 
a little strange, that there should not be "«???/ thing iii truth, ^^ 
concerning a certain matter, in a pamphlet of thirty-six pages, 
w^ien that whole pamphlet too, was written upon that one 
single subject! As to the impossibility of understanding the 
pamphlet, I have no doubt but those persons against whom it 
was written, would rejoice, could they believe it had not been 
read and fully understood by thousands. With what unpar- 
donable laxity these certifiers have written! The whole 
pamphlet is false! And why is it false? Why, because! Be- 
cause what? Just because it is ! ! Exquisite reasoning this ! ! ! 



or THE LIFE, &C. 281 

However, with a certain class of jDersons, strong assertions 
have great weight. 

After an attentive perusal of this affair, I hesitated whether 
I ought to take any notice of it or not. However, I ultimate- 
ly replied to it, in a pamphlet of twelve pages. This hesita- 
tion, however, did notarise from any conviction on my part, 
of the difficulty of answering it; but mostly from an unwill- 
ingness to make something out of Jiot/iiyig. For surely he 
must be very indifferently employed, who would take upon 
himself to answer nonsense in form; to ridicule what is of 
itself ridiculous; and trouble the world to read a second 
something, for the sake of the impertinences of a former — 
to which his is a reply. 

In conclusion, I know not to what school of viorals I shall 
trace the unblushing and false charges with which this circu- 
lar abounds. The guilt of lying, which attaches itself to the 
features of the thing, is that of the most odious kind; it is guilt, 
the offspring of malice, illy reflected on, deeply corrupt, 
shamefully false, and secretly though badly matured. 

Steam Doctors! — During this year, in the county of Jef- 
ferson, I renewed my acquaintance with a species of vermin 
caHed ^eam doctors. During the spring and summer of 
1833, in South Carolina and Georgia, I became personally ac- 
quainted with several of these miscreants, and with feelings 
of indescribable horror, I witnessed the spread of carnao-e, 
rapine and death, under their administration; and I then hop- 
ed, I might never meet with them again. But alas! I found 
them in great abundance in this part of Tennessee. These 
miserable victims to human refinement and intelligence, o-o 
about transforming portions of gum, pepper and alcohol, into 
a strong decoction called number six; and by a sort of me- 
chanical process, they steam the animal life out of a man, al- 
most in a moment, and thus cause him, in short order, to ex- 
change an earthly, for a heavenly inheritance! These are 
wonderful men! Their mental eyes survey the whole circle 
of the science of medicine, and point out the path by which 
every branch of knowledge may be carried to perfection! 
They can detach the element of fire from the invisible air, 
surrounding a weed called lobelia, and cause the strongest 
constitution, and the stoutest frame to melt like wax under its 
powerful agency ! These steamers can go still farther. They 
can penetrate beyond the limits of all that is visible in the 
immense world of experiments, and range amidst the infmi- 
ty of unknown systems and worlds dispersed throughout the 
boundless regions of Thomsonianismy3Lnd they can overleap the 
y2 



282 A NARRATITE 

bounds of time, and expatiate amidst future scenes of misery, 
and pain, and suffering, and man-slaughter, and murder, 
which ^^eye hath not seen," nor even ''ear heard, '^ through- 
out the countless ages of their infamous duration! 

Socrates, Plato, Archimedes, Newton, Locke, Boyle, La 
Place, and all other similar illustrious characters, that you 
were now living! that you might witness a demonstration of 
the vast capacity of the human intellect, the extensive range 
of thought it is capable of prosecuting, and the immense num- 
ber of ideas it is capable of acquiring! Esculapius,thou father 
of the science of medicine, Rush, and all others who have 
since written, and all ye knowing men, so far as the science of 
inedicine is concerned, that you were yet living! that you 
might witness the new discoveries in the healing art, which 
these reforr)iers are making! And ye sublimer sciences of 
Geometry, Trigonometry, Conic Sections, Fluxions, Algebra, 
and other branches of mathematics, stand aside, and see 
Thomsonianism evince the acuteness and perspicacity of the 
human intellect! Our world has produced numerous philan- 
thropic characters, who have shone as lights in the moral 
world, and have acted as benefactors to the human race. But 
the names of Alfred, Penn, Barnard, Raikes, Neilde, Clark- 
son, Sharpe, Buxton, Wilberforce, Venning, and many oth- 
ers, so familiar to all who are at all acquainted with the an- 
nals of benevolence, must give way to these new-comers! 
These illustrious steamers, from a principle of pure benevo- 
lence, devote their lives to active beneficence, and to the al- 
leviation of human wretchedness, in every section where they 
travel, — diving into the depths of coves, and exposing them- 
selves to the infectious atmospheres of towns and villages, in 
order to meliorate the condition of the afflicted! 

From realm to realm with cross or crescent crowned, 

Where'er mankind and misery are found. 

O'er towering- mountains, deep vallies, or wilds of snow. 

These s^ea^ner^ journeying seek the house of woe! 

They go, inemulous of fame or wealth, 

Profuse of toil and prodig-al of health; 

Lead stern-ey'd calomel to certain dark domains, 

If not to sever — to re/ax its chains; 

Persecuted and opposed, by the living and the dead, 

Regardless of them all, as Crockett says, they "go aheadP' 

Onward they move! disease and death retire. 

While the Old Faculty hate them and admire. 

But as a supplement to the preceding eulogy, it may be se- 
riously asked, — is it possible that an obscure, and ordinary 
citizen, possessing neither learning nor superior powers of in- 
tellect, and having read but very few books of any kind, can 



or THE LIFE, &c. 283 

spring up like a mushroom — purchase ''« rvghf^ for twenty 
dollars — and all of a sudden, become fully acquainted with 
the human system, and the various and complicated diseases 
of our country, and as suddenly effect a cure for them all? If 
such a supposition could be admitted, man would be the most 
inexplicable phenomenon in the universe; his existence an 
unfathomable mystery; and there could be no conceivable 
mode of reconciling his condition and destination Avith the 
wisdom, the rectitude, and the benevolence of his Creator! I 
do not say that all the steam-doctors are ignorant and unlearn- 
ed; but in the language of St. Paul, I do say, that the most of 
them have "stretched themselves beyond their rneasure,^' and 
that they <*boast in another man's line of things." And not 
one in ten of these steaming crusaders, who are marching 
in such wild confusion through the country, can distinguish 
between the muscles and bones belonging to the human frame, 
and the lacteal and lymphatic vessels of the same; or the veins 
and arteries belonging to man, and the tympanum of his ear! 

Now, there is one consideration, which, apprt from all oth- 
ers, is of itself sufficient, to forever fix the doom of this sys- 
tem of practice. It is this: they apply the same remedy to 
all sorts of complaints. All who know any thing about dis- 
eases and remedies, know very well that that which relieves 
a person in certain cases of affliction, is death to the individual 
inothercases. And though this odious prodigy of would-be 
doctors^ has now become almost as numerous as the croakino- 
fry of Egypt; and though I perceive no limits to the excur- 
sions of these man-killers, but those which arise from the tri- 
umphant march of common sense; yet, until I wish to ex- 
change worlds, or find myself chained down, as it were, with 
an un wieldly corporeal frame, 1 will never suffer one of them 
to come about me. I have never had any sickness in my life, 
(thanks be to God for his mercies,) and consequently have 
never needed a physician of any kind, farther than to give 
me some one or two simple doses of medicine; but should I 
ever need one, and one of the old school cannot be had, I shall 
certainly prefer dying a natural death, to being killed. How- 
ever, we live in a free country, and all who prefer steaming 
have a right to be steamed, or hanged, or drowned, or put to 
rest in such other way as they may choose. 

But in conclusion, I will take the liberty of advising the 
Methodist clergy, generally, to have nothing at all to do with 
this pepper and whiskey system of practice. It will do very 
w^ell to connect this system of practice with the womanish, 
squeaking, canting, odd, whimsical, whining tone, and insip- 



284 A XARRATITE 

id jargon of a Baptist preacher. Or it would suit the cold- 
blooded selfishness of a Hopkinsian priest, who believes that 
the introduction of moral evil into the world, is for the great- 
est good of the universe! But never let a Methodist preach- 
er, who believes that men are to be judged according to their 
works, have any thing to do with the wretched system. Nor 
never let a Methodist preacher use the medicines, unless, in 
the language of Job, he prefers "strangling and deatli, rather 
than life.'-* And let a Methodist preacher, instead of read- 
ing these doctor books, read that noble and excellent book, the 
old records of God's providence. Finally, there is nothing 
more disgusting to me, than to see a Methodist minister with 
a Bible and hymn book in one end of his saddle-bags, and a 
large black bottle full of number .52a?, stopped with acorn cob, 
having a rag round it, in the other end ! Well may the Pres- 
byterians charge such with being incompetent. Brethren, 
quit it! For God's sake — for your own credit's sake-— and 
for the sake of the honor of Methodism, quit it! And let all 
our people say amen! 

lioLSTON Seminary. — In the close of thisyear, I attended 
the semi-annual examination of this institution, which took 
place in the hall of the seminary. The exercises were con- 
ducted under the special directions of Mr. Saffel, the presi- 
dent of the institution, and in his usually prompt and efficient 
manner, who, on the last day of the examination read an elo- 
quent, learned, and appropriate address. The students were 
all examined very minutely, in the various branches of liter- 
ature in which they had been engaged during the session, and 
in the hearing of a number of visiters, acquitted themselves 
with great honor. On the last day of the examination, the 
students closed by delivering, each, an oration, of original 
composition; and in this, particularly, the)^ did themselves 
great honor, and greatly delighted the listening auditory. 

The friends of this institution may rest assured, that East 
Tennessee does not afford a finer young man than Mr. Saffel, 
or one better qualified, in every respect, io take charge of an 
institution of the kind; and the conference which appointed 
him to preside over it, has more than once expressed its en- 
tire satisfaction as to the manner in which he has performed 
his arduous duties. 

I thus particularize, because I wish to recommend this in- 
stitution to all, into whose hand a copy of this work shall falL 

This seminary, was set on foot three years ago, under the 
patronage of the Holston annual conference, of the Metho- 
dist Episcopal church, at the suggestion of the members and 



OF THE LIFE, &C. 285 

friends of said church, who desire an opportunity of giving 
their children an education, on reasonable terms, without en- 
dangering both their religious principles and moral habits — as 
is the case at our public colleges and academies. Still, ours 
is not a theological institution. 

The town in which this seminary is located — New-Market, 
Jefferson county, Tennessee — is a beautiful little village, 
situated in one of the most fertile vallies in the state. 

Beside the advantages already named, and many others not 
named, which this institution possesses — I would mention the 
cheapness of tuition and boarding. 

Once more: The time has at length arrived, when the trus- 
tees of this institution, have found themselves able to com- 
mence the manual labor system, in connexion with the 
seminary, by means of which, industrious and promising 
young men, destitute of pecuniary means, may acquire an 
education. 

During this year, I incurred the sore displeasure of the 
Hopkinsiansby circulating a pamphlet entitled, "Calvinism, 
and its influence on the church," written and published by 
Rev. James Gumming, a minister of high standing in the 
Holston conference. I had no further connexion with this 
production, than simply to circulate it; and this I did with 
great pleasure. This pamphlet is well written, and for its 
size, is the best exposition of the kind I have ever seen. And 
the truth is, it is unanswerable. The Hopkinsians, however, 
have replied to it, in the way they generally reply to a pro- 
duction of the kind, — they have affected to treat it with silent 
contempt! 

1834. — Knoxville, Ten., October 15lh. Our conference is 
now in session in this place, and has been since Wednesday, 
the 8th of this instant. Our bishop having failed to attend 
with us, from some unknown cause, we have called our es- 
teemed friend and brother, John Henninger, to the chair, 
who has filled the highly responsible station in such way, as 
to do honor to himself, and at the same time give general sat- 
isfaction to the conference. 

The preachers have generally attended, and are in the en- 
joyment of usual health and spirits. Thus, God in his good- 
ness has rolled us together once more. What changes have 
been witnessed since we assembled last! How many of our 
friends have gone to reap their reward in heaven, while we 
have been spared as monuments of unchanging goodness! 
Yes, the recurrence of another annual meeting, in the history 
of our conference, calls for the public expression of our grati- 



ass A NARRATIVE 

tude to the great Head of the church, that we have been pri- 
vileged one time more, to mingle our praises and thanksgiv- 
ings together here in the temple of the Lord, and in cele- 
brating the prosperity of our efforts. As ministers, these 
thoughts should lead us to a serious examination of our hearts 
before God, to ascertain whether or not we are growing wiser 
and better in proportion to the privileges we enjoy, and the 
opportunity of improvement afforded us. The year just past, 
has been replete with such events, as have left the public mind 
in that state of excitement which is not very friendly to the 
prosperity of religion. And even now, both the civil and 
religious atmospheres, seem highly charged with combustible 
materials. What the final issue of all these things will be, 
time alone can tell. However, in the midst of the^^signs of 
the times,'' God has abundantly blessed the labors of his ser- 
vants, in various parts of the world. 

From this conference I hope to be enabled to date the com- 
mencement of the reign of reform^— z. most signal triumph 
of Wesleyan itinerancy over a sort of legalized stmi-iXxxi- 
erancy. 

It is manifest that our people are on the eve of revolting 
in disgust from an established local travelling ministry. 
For one, I rejoice to think that our conference is about to be 
redeemed from the sway of a miserable system of '^accom- 
modotions,^' whose whole course for several years past, has 
tended to anarchy and destruction, in a moral point of view. 
By this, I mean that we, as a conference, have, for several 
years past, paid too much attention to ihe interests oi indi- 
viduals, and not enough to the wants of the circuits and sta- 
tions within our bounds. These remarks are correct. They 
are truth — every word truth. 

As a conference, we have an immense field spread out be- 
fore us, and great encouragement to labor. I say encourage- 
ment to labor ^ for I apprehend that some of our friends have 
incorrect ideas of the real state of things, and having heard 
so much of the triumphs of the cross in different parts of the 
country, and of the utter defeat and ruin of so many enemies 
of the Son of God, are disposed to regard the soldiers they 
have sent hither, rather as a garrison quartered in an enemy's 
country in a time of profound peace, than as an army with 
theit weapons in their hands, daily meeting and contending 
with the foes of their king. But, I must not be regarded as 
attempting to discourage the exertions, to deaden the hopes, 
and to quell the spirits of our friends by proclaiming to the 
world, that nothing is doing in the Holston conference. Nor 



OF THE IIFB, &C. 287 

is there alack of harmony in our conference. Nor yet, do 
the tongues of our preachers, when in the pulpit, dance only 
to the jingle of the dollars and cents in the people's treasury, 
as is the case with some of our clerical neighbors. Of such 
neighbors, I have only to say, I am puzzled to account for 
their conduct upon any known principle of ministerial 
fidelity. 

That which has most particularly arrested my attention at 
this conference, is the circumstance of so many of the preach- 
ers having married the past year. Never have I known 
so many of them to marry in one year. But, I cannot object 
to this, — for, as Cowper, who by the by, was a hypochondriac 
old bachelor, asked, 

"What is there, in the vale of life, 
Half so delig-htful as a wife?'' 

Old bachelor! are you so lost to a sense of the pleasures and 
enjoyments of a married life, that you can remain contented 
in a state of ^'single blessedness,'^ while the old and young, 
tlie middle aged, and all around you, are joining their ^e^r/^- 
and hands in this lawful and scriptural enterprise? But do 
you excuse yourself on the ground, that no one seems willing 
to have you? This is by no means a plausible excuse; for it 
is well known, that every old widow, m.aid, and girl, in all the 
country, d.YQ candidates iov matrimony. 

As an individual, I have ever stood aloof from every thing 
like coquetry, and I hope ever to do so. The truth is, no 
gentleman ever did or ever will, make a constant practice of 
courting every girl he might chance to meet with, and impress 
the belief upon her mind that he intended to marry her, &c. 
Much less would a christian minister act thus. And although 
I never was engaged to be married, and never even asked a 
female to marry me in my life, yet, I have some good desires^ 
as the Hopkinsians would say, on this subject; and I think it 
quite probable, I shall some day or other, make some amoroUvS 
advances towards some one. For, born as man obviously is, 
for the companionship of his fellows, it must be evident that 
the main tendencies and aptitudes Of his nature, should every 
day be looked for in connexion with his social relationships. 
And the marriage ceremony is the most interesting spectacle 
social life exhibits. To see two rational beings in the glow of 
youth and hope, which invests life with a *<halo of glory," 
appear together, and openly acknowledging their preference 
for each other, voluntarily enter into a league of perpetual 
friendship, and christian union — is it not delightful? Be con- 
stant my brother — be condescending my sister — and what can 



288 A NARRATIVE 

earth offer so pure as your friendship, so dear as your affection? 
Well might Virgil say: — 

<'The wife and husband equally conspire, 
To work by night, and rake the winter fire; 
He sharpens torches in the glimmering room; 
She shoots the flying shuttle through the loom; 
Or boils in kettles must of wine, and skims. 
With leaves, the dregs that overflow the brims; 
And till the watchful cock awake the day, 
She sings to drive the tedious hours away ." 

As my book is now printing, I have gone to the office and 
examined that part which is ready for folding. I consider 
that the type for its size is very good, and seems to be well 
distributed over the page; so that the words are every where 
sufficiently distinct, which is not always the case with the 
books printed in this country. The paper is good — the ink 
very good, and the typographical execution quite respectable. 
Of course I think the matter is excellent. I am also of 
opinion, that the punctuation is at least passable. But my 
readers, I presume, w^ill not, as do the Mahommedans, con- 
sider the points essential. 

This work, from first to last, be it well or zV/ executed, has 
not been done without great labor and toil, on my part, nor 
has any labor been omitted, to make it, in every respect, as 
far as possible, what the title page promises — '^Helps to the 
study of Presbyterianism,^^ &c. Thus, through the mercir 
ful assistance of God, my labor now terminates, a labor which, 
were it yet to be commenced, I would, in view of its being 
called for, most cheerfully undertake. Since it is finished, I 
regret not the labor: while writing it I have had "the testimony 
of a good conscience." 

Having critically and cautiously examined a point in the 
prosecution of this work, I have fearlessly followed the con- 
victions of my own mind, without servilely crouching to the 
opinions of others, whether right or wrong. Having care- 
fully studied a subject, deriving all the light I could from 
every source within my reach, without timidly calculating the 
consequences which might result from publishing my con- 
victions in reference to it, I have boldly proclaimed what I 
conscientiously believed, allowing others the liberty of think- 
ing, writing, speaking, and acting for themselves. And, 
while this fearless course subjects me to censure from the 
timid, as well as unmerited abuse from the bigotted, it will 
relieve me from servilely imitating others, and secure to me 
the approbation of an approving conscience. And let my 
occupation in future life be what it may, God forbid that I 



or THE IIFE, &C. 289 

ever should pursue "that timid and vascillating course of con- 
duct, which evinces a greater solicitude to please the multi- 
tude than to arrive at truth, and to obtain popular applause at 
the expense of a good conscience! And may the Lord pity 
the man, who would compromit his character, by prostrating 
' principle, before the idol of popularity! 

At this conference, which has just closed, I have been ap- 
pointed to travel the Scott circuit, in Virginia. I shall set out 
for the circuit in a few days. I am told this circuit is situated 
in the niountainous part of the state — in a fine grazing coun- 
try, which enables the farmer to raise stock, &c. The val- 
lies between the mountains are generally fertile, and produce 
excellent grain. 

Religion. Methodists are the most numerousdenomination. 
Next to these, the Baptists. 

Climate. Scott county enjoys a mild climate. 
The weather is generally moderate till towards Christmas, 
when winter commences, and continues variable till the 
middle of March, sometimes pleasant, and at other times dis- 
agreeable. 

The life of a Methodist travelling preacher, with all its 
losses, crosses, and disappointments, has nevertheless been ? 
pleasant one td me; and had its vicissitudes. been more numer- 
ous and grievous than they even were, I should not have 
retired from the field. On every circuit I have travelled, 
there have been acts of kindness paid to me, which, though 
I can never repay them in this life, I will never forget them. 
Kind attentions are at all times pleasant, but when one is far 
from home, and among strangers, it is delightful indeed to 
meet with those who are kind and afiectionate. My stay on 
each circuit, has of course been short, but I . shall long re- 
member the polite, yea, the christian friendship of many 
persons on those circuits. There is something in these tran- 
sient attachments which shows us that we were born to do 
each other good, notwithstanding all the evil there is in the 
world. But to many of those friends,, whose kindness in- 
duced me to love them as relations, I have long since bid a 
last adieu, perhaps, no more to meet, till, 
* 'Wrapt in fire the realms of ether glow, 
Andheaven*s last onset shakes the world below." 
And Lord, irradiate our minds with all useful truth, instil 
into our hearts a spirit of benevolence, give us understanding, 
meekness, temperance, fortitude, patience, and aH the excel- 
lent graces of the Spirit. Be indulgent to our imperfect 
nature, and supply our imperfections with thy heavenly faror. 



290 A NAKRATIVE 



CONCLUSION. 

I have a few remarks to make on some four or five point:^^ 
before I finall)^ close. As a man, and as a minister, I am ob- 
jected to from several considerations, by many within the 
circle of my acquaintance. Every man living, has those 
within his vicinity who hate, who envy, and affect to despise 
l^imj — these will see his actions with a jaundiced eye, and 
will represent them to others in the same light in which they 
themselves behold them. No virtue, no prudence, no cau- 
tion or generosity, can preserve a man from misrepresenta- 
tions; his conduct must be judged of by weak and prejudiced 
intellects, or by such as only see a part of it, and hastily 
form a judgment of the whole. Well might the poet say: — 
"When cruel slander takes her impious flight. 
What man's secure against her baleful sway, 

' Virtue herself must sink in shades of night. 

And spotless innocence must fall a prey." 

I will state the several objections urged against me, and an- 
swer them in detail. I say I hasten to reply to these several 
objections, with the hope that my remarks will be read — care- 
fully and candidly read — by every class of readers. I intend 
no quibbling — no special pleading. I shall plead upon the 
broad merits of the case First, 

Inconsistency of character. — -This is the most com- 
mon, though not the most inconsiderable objection to me, as 
a minister. By the term inconsistency, we are to understand 
a disagreement — incongruity. When, therefore, it is urged 
that I am ■ inconsistent, it is not intended to say that I am 
hypocritical, or that I am clad with a tissue of deception, by 
which I impose on my fellow-creatures. I am glad of this, 
for of all the offspring of depravity, deception, perhaps, bears 
the nearest resemblance to its father the devil. But to the 
subject. It is true, I cannot mingle in my looks, the piety of 
Abraham, the meekness of Moses, and the fervor of Isaiah; 
nor am \ exact to a degree of scrupulosity in small matters, 
and at the same time neglect the most important points in the 
law of God. I have never thought myself deputed from hea- 
ven for the general reformation of manners, nor would I try 
all men at my bar. Nor yet, am I one of those blind guides, 
who would strain at a gnat and swallow a camel. I have my 
faults, no doubt, as well as all other men — I am not infalli- 
hie, because I am not immortal. There are spots in the sun 
— r-there are specks in me. I am a man, and therefore liable 



OF THE iirE, kc, 291 

to err. Yes, I am a right dovm man, and without any sort 
of disguise, I exhibit to the world what I am. In a word, 
many say, *^Lo! here is Christ, or Christ is there;" but few 
can consistently witness that ^'the kingdom of heaven is 
within them»'^ With more truth than ever, we may say: — 

'•Ye difftrent sects, who all declare, 

Lo! here is Christ, or Christ is there; 

Your stronger proofs divinely give, 

And show us where the christians live 5 

Your claim, alas! ye cannot prove. 

Ye want the genuine mark of love." 

A GREAT MANY PERSONS DISLIKE ME. To this I reply? 

that every man who does his duty in life, in the uncompro- 
mising spirit of integrity, must make enemies, and meet with 
opposition. Daniel, Isaiah, Micah, Elijah, and all the Lord's 
faithful prophets, had their enemies. So had Peter, arid Paul, 
and James, and the rest of the apostles. In modern times, 
what man had more enemies than Luther? — And Knox, and 
Wesley, and Fletcher, and Whitfield: not comparing myself 
to them however. Even the mild and amiable Son of the 
Most High, could not escape the persecutions of the wicked. 
And every faithful witness for the Saviowr, may expect to be 
constantly exposed to the enmity of evil doers. While I 
dwell in a *'house of clay whose foundation is in the dust;'' 
while I sojourn in '^a land of pits and snares, '^ and within 
^'the region of the shadow of death:'' while I walk amidst 
scenes of sorrow and suffering, surrounded by *^the tents of 
strife," and exposed to the malice of ^^lyinglips and deceitful 
tongues," I am admonished not to make any other 'calcula- 
tions, but to <*suffer for righteousness' sake." As long as 1 live, 
I expect to stand as a mark, for the vengeance of cankered 
hearts, and the malice of envenomed tongues. Nor do I even 
desire a different state of things. 

**No glory I covet, no riches I want. 

Ambition is nothing* to me; 
The one thing I beg of kind heaven to grant. 

Is a mind independent and free. 
With passion unruffl'd untaint'd witti pride, 

By reason my life let me square: 
The wants of my nature are chiefly suppli'd, 

And the rest is but folly and care." 

Indeed, it is a matter of but little consequence with me, to 
hear, that this, that, or the other man, is displeased with me, 
and ^-utters loud swelling words" against me. One among 
the many incontestible evidences I have, of making ad- 
vancements in the divine life is, that all men do not speak 
well of me. I rather request of all, who, when they look 



293 A NARRATIVE 

at me, have a blot on their optics^ and over the same 
spectacles of malice, never to say any thing in my favor. 
And I should be seriously alarmed, to learn certainly, that the 
community at large, admire me, or that I am exceedingly 
popular. I hope, therefore, always to have certain ioin7iing 
ways J to make a certain class of human beings hate me ! For 
by this I shall know, 1 am in the road to a better world. Said 
a divine personage, "Wo unto you, when all men speak well 
of you ! for so did their fathers of the false prophets. ^' And 
again: <*If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me be- 
fore it hated you. '^ Again: "If ye were of the world the 
world would love his own: but because ye are not of the 
world, but I have chosen you out of the w^orld, therefore the 
world hateth you. " And again : "Blessed are ye, when men 
shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say allTnanner 
of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be ex- 
ceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so per- 
secuted they the prophets which were before ycu." And to 
cap the climax, Christ says: "If the world hate you, ye know 
that it hated me before it hated you.^^ Now, the religion 
which can endure these things, is a firm and effectual support 
in the midst of every calamity to which a believer is exposed. 
Is the christian persecuted? — this is a part of his earthly in- 
heritance. Is he visited with sickness? — he anticipates the 
period when pain and sorrow shall forever flee away. Is he 
oppressed by poverty? — he reflects with peculiar delight, 
upon the treasure which he possesses in the heavens. In a 
word, he knows and believes, that all things shall work to- 
gether for his good; and that his light afflictions, which are 
but for a moment, shall work out for him a far more exceed- 
ing, even an eternal weight of glory. 

But I AM ALWAYS QFARRELLiNG. — To this gravc .charge, 
I reply, I have, it is true, been enga^red in several judicial 
and clerical contests; but I assert, in view of a judgment to 
come, that I have never engaged in any controversy whatever, 
unless I myself, my brethren in the ministry, or our doctrines 
and institutions, have first been assailed. And in defence of 
eacli, or all of these, I would risk as many characters, lives 
and fortunes, if I had them, as there are atoms of the universe, 
or minims embodying the inimensity of space. Yes, should 
secret calumnies and public scandals, private associations and 
public testimonies, ridicule, and satire, poetry and prose, 
paragraphs and pamphlets, dreams, and dialogues, and all the 
presses and lying tongues, in the union, be employed against 
me, I shall nevertheless maintain the truth. For 1 have em- 



OF THE IIFE, &C 295l 

barked in the glorious enterprise of preaching the gospel, 
with a proportion of ambition and zeal, and with a persever- 
ance not to be daunted by the chilling and sickening blasts of 
])overty and persecution. Therefore, I am prepared to en- 
dure all the dreadful consequences of sectarian malice and 
management, even shoukl they include — pains and penalties 
— bills of attainder— confiscation of estate — all the horrors of 
ecclesiastical ^nd civil war — nay, death upon the scaffold ! 

Then let it be urged, that I am, and always have been,/fa 
mover of seditions,'^ — the pest of general society, and the 
fruitful source of domestic broils; or a being whose heart is 
full of rancor and anim.osities, jarring affections, and dis- 
cordant and malevolent feelings! Yes, ring my death knell 
from steep to steep — let its swelling sounds be heard in start- 
ling echoes, mingling with the rush of the mountain's torrent, 
and the mighty cataract's earthquake voice! Spread the un- 
furled banner of calumny upon every breeze — let it float in the 
atmosphere till my name becomes a mockery and a byword! 
Like the Phoenix, in newness of beauty and majesty, amid 
the fires of opposition, I hope to rise to victory and triumph. 
What can be more noble than to brave the censure of disap- 
pointed ambition— to bear with the arrogance, pride, and in- 
firmities of a priest-ridden community, and blind bigots, for 
the good of mankind! To suffer all this, I am perfectly 
aware, must require a considerable degree of moral courage; 
and I think I possess the courage that can endure it all, and 
even death itself. I pretend not to bea candidate for the honors 
ot martyrdom, yet, I should feel that I had gone down to my 
grave disgraced, did I not incur the censure and abuse of 
bloated bigotrj^, and priestly corruption. 

My style as a writer, talents as a preacher, and 
MANNERS AS A MAN. — When I write, preach, converse, or 
mingle with society, I do all after the texture so to speak, of 
my own mind. But it will be said, I am a minister of the 
gospel, and that no temptation, no unjust usage, should pro- 
voke me to come down from my high abode, and seat myself 
upon the dunghill of anger and revenge. This is all very 
true. I believe the scriptures when they say, ^'God is love; 
and he that dwelleth in love, dvvelleth in God." i3ut I have 
yet to be convinced that it is sinful for a christian to defend 
himself, and that too, in an independent and pointed way. 
As it respects my acco7nplishme7its,l never professed to have 
a great deal of polish about me, nor do I desire to be polite. 

As it regards my intellectual faculties, I never believed I 

was a Solomon. I have never been able as yet, by my flowino- 

z2 ^ 



20^ A ¥AE?vATiyE 

eloquence, and manly arguments, or the incomparable liveli- 
ness and power of reasoning, to enable a congregation to see 
things that are not. I could never induce a man to believe, 
by the magic influence of a long whining exhortation or 
prayer, that twice five would not make ten in America, as 
well as in France! In a word, I never thought I was a great 
man — I never desire to he what the world calls a great man» 
No verily: — 

"My name from out the temple where the dead 

Are honored by the nations — let it be — 

And light the laurels on a loftier head! 

And be the Spartan's epitaph on me — 

Sparta hath many a worthier son than he. " 

In testimony whereof, I siga the same with my own hand, 
this seventeenth day of October, in the town of Knoxville, 
and state of Tennessee, in the year of our Lord, one thou- 
sand eight hundred and thirty-four, and in the fifty-ninth 
year of American Independence. 

WILLIAM G. BROWNLOW. 



CONTENTS 



Page^- 



Dedication, 
Preface, 



j?^s5? a 



CHAPTER I. 

Rise, progress and importance of Sunday Schools. 15 

CHAPTER H. 
Origin and design of the American Sunday School 

Union. 21 

CHAPTER HI. 
The copy-right question and the American Sunday 
School Union — difference in the sales of its books 
to different unions or schools — different denomina- 
tions represented in the Union — the Calvinists have 
a preponderating influence, &c. - - - 26 
CHAPTER IV. 
The books of the American Sunday School Union sec- 
tarian. -- -34 

CHAPTER V. 
Some among the many misrepresentations made by 
the managers and agents of the American Sunday 

School Union. - 40 

CHAPTER VI. 
Correspondence between bishop Otey of the Protest- 
ant Episcopal Church, and the Rev. Mr. Shepherd, 
-egentof the American Sunday School Union. - 48 
CHAPTER VII. 
Speeches of Messrs. Powell and Burden, in the Sen- 
ate of the State of Pennsylvania, on the application 
of the American Sunday School Union for an act of 
incorporation. - - - - - - - 58 

CHAPTER VHI. 
American Tract Society — Its origin — Principles — De- 
sign and tendency. - 71 

CHAPTER IX. 
The American Home Missionary Society — its ori- 
gin — its principles and tendency. - - - - 78 



296 CONTENTS. 

CHAPTER X. 

American Bible Society — its rise and progress — im- 
prudent conduct of some of its agents — the whole 
Society liable to be abused, &c. - - - - 86 

CHAPTER XL 
Americnn Education Society — its rise and progress — 
its principles, &C2 ___--- 95 
CHAPTER XH. 
The American Board of Commissioners for foreign 
missions — the rise and progress of this Society — its 
true character, &c. - - - - - - OS 

CHAPTER XHI. 
American Temperance Society — its rise and pro- 
gress — its design, &c. &c. - - - « 103 
CHAPTER XIV. 
The American Colonization Society — its rise and pro- 
gress — the subject of slavery considered. - -. 107 

CHAPTER L 

Western Virginia, a moral waste. - - - 113 

CHAPTER H. 
Kentucky almost destitute. - - - - - 117 

CHAPTER HI. 
The province of Upper Canada p great moral waste 119 

CHAPTER IV. 
Delaware county, in New York, a great moral waste. 121 

CHAPTER V. 
Five millions of people in the United States are still 
without a preached gospel. - - - - 124 

CHAPTER VI. 
State of Indiana, a great moral waste. - - - 128 

CHAPTER VII. 
Arkansaw Territory, a great moral waste. - - 132 

CHAPTER VIII. 
Missouri a moral waste. - - - - - 135 

CHAPTER IX. 
Ariderson county in East Ten. , a great moral waste. 1 38 

CHAPTER X. 
Strawberry Plains, Jefferson county, East Tennessee, 
a moral waste. - - - - - - 141 

CHAPTER XI. 
The Mary ville Intelligencer against the Methodist cler- 
gy- - - - 145 



CONTENTS 



297 



CHAPTER XII. 
Review of Rev. Wimpey's catechism on church gov- 
ernment. - - -* - ' - loa 

CHAPTER I. 

The New England clerg;y opposed to the war of 1812. 1G7 

CHAPTER II. 
Address of the charitable society of New England. 170 

CHAPTER III. 
Effects of the laws of Connecticut. - - - 173 

CHAPTER IV. 
Extracts from a discourse delivered on the 4th of July, 
1827, in the 7th Presbyterian church in Philadel- 
phia, entitled ^^theduty of christian freemen to elect 
christian rulers," by Ezra Stiles Ely, D. D. Pastor 
of the 3d Presbyterian church in that city. - 177 
CHAPTER V. 
Ambitious designs of the Presbyterian ministry, or, 
the case termed ^'^murder will out," or, an account 
of the great Presbyterian plot, relative to "a central 
society," in 1828. - - - - - - 182 

CHAPTER VI. 
History and mystery of a certain 41 dollars and 44 
cents. - ^^'^ 

CHAPTER I. 

Calvinism in its true colors, as contained in the wri- 
tin2;s of John Calvin. - - - - - - 20o 

CHAPTER II. 
Genuine Calvinism, as contained in the Westminster 
Confession of Faith. .. - - - 209 
CHAPTER HI. 
Calvinism, as contained in the Larger and Shorter cate- 
chisms of the Presbyterian church. - - - 213 
CHAPTER IV. 
Hopkinsian Calvinism, as contained in Doctor Hop- 
idns's sermons, and system of divinity. - - 215 
CHAPTER V. 
Hopkinsian Calvinism, as set forth in a work called the 
^ 'Seven Conversations between Athanasius and Do- 
eilis, on theological subjects," - - - 221 



298 



CONTENTS. 



CHAPTER VI. 

A brief notice of Rev. Abel Pearson's ^^Analysis of 
the principles of the divine government, m a series 

of conversations, &c." 225 

CHAPTER Vn. 

A brief notice of a work entitled, * ^Questions on the 
system of didactic theology, taught in the southern 
and western theological seminary. " - - 229 

CHAPTER VHL 

A brief notice of the doctrines of the leading denomin- 
ations in our country, and a word of advice to those 
who think of uniting with some church. - - 233' 

NARRATIVE 

Of the life, travels, and circumstances incident there- 
to, of William G. Brovvnlow — Preliminary re- 
marks. . - - - - _ - 241 

Parentage 242 — death of his father — idem — born and 

raised in Wythe county, Va. - - - . 243 
Obtained religion at Sulphur Springs, 20 miles east of 
Abingdon. - - - - - - - lb. 

Was received into the travelling connection on trial in 
the fall of 1826, and appointed to Black water cir- 
cuit in N. C. 244 

Near freezing to death. 245 

Account of the conference in Knoxville in 1827. - 246 
Was appointed to French Broad circuit, and then to 

the Mary ville circuit. Ibid 

Account of a Hopkinsian sacramental meeting at Ma- 
ry ville — Mr. Minis's sermon. - - - - 247 

Account of Mr. Brown's sermon at Louisville. - lb 
Returns 1o former circuit — wars among the Hopkin- 
sians — scramble among the Hopkinsian preachers 
for the money collected — one of them claims and 
keeps the most of it — ludicrous account of their dis- 
persion. - - - - - - - - 248 

Account of the head waters of French Broad. - lb 

Conference meets in Jonesboro' in 1828. - - 24^ 

Receives deacon's orders, and appointed to travel in 
Washington circuit. - - - - - - lb 

Controversy and law suit with a Hopkinsian elder. - lb 
Travels through the Cherokee nation. - . - 251 
Singing and praying of the Indians. - , - -lb 
Conferencemeetingin Abingdon in 1829. - - 252 
, Appointed to the Athens circuit 76 



CONTENTS. 299 

Meeting of Conference in 1830, in Greene county. 256 
Received Elder's orders, and appointed to travel in 

Tellico circuit. /^ 

Account of his controversy with agents of the Amer- 
ican Sunday School Union, &c. - - _ 257 
Meeting of Conference in Athens in 1831. - . 259 
Appointed to Franklin circuit, in North Carolina. Jb 
Involved in another law suit with a baptist preacher. lb 
Account of this transaction, &c. - - - - lb 
Expels several members for drunkenness. - - 261 
Elected a delegate to attend general conference in Phil- 
adelphia in 1832. - - - _ . . 262 
Spends a week in Washington — introduction to Gen. 

Jackson. - - - . . _ -lb 

Proceeds to Baltimore— preaches to the convicts in 

the penitentiary there, - - ... 26'6 
Proceeds to Philadelphia. - - - . 2g4 

Conference meets in Evansham in 1832. - _ 265 
Appointed to Tugalow circuit. - - - - lb 

Presbyterian and Baptist clergymen in South Carolina, 

preaching nullification. - . _ _ . 266 
Account of the Tulelee falls in Habersham county, 

Georgia. - - . . . . ^QS 

Decision and account of the law suit in North Carolina. 369 
In 1833, Conference met at Kingsport. - - . * 275 
Appointed to travel on Dandridge circuit. - _ /^ 
The meteoric phenomenon accounted for. - - 276 

Steam doctors, &c. - 2S1 

Holston Seminary, &c. - - . _ _ gcj 
Meeting of Conference in Knoxville in 1834. - 285 
Conclusion, -- - - . . . -290 






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