In examining the ruins of an old “World,” a part of a letter signed “Levi Tucker,” arrested our attention, from which we will give our readers the following extract:
HAMILTONVILLE, Feb. 29, 1834
“VERY DEAR BROTHER. - In the 7th number of the “World” are the strictures of K. on my letter of January 3d, in which he supposes I have assumed the ground that there is but ‘one thing needful’ to constitute a minister of Jesus Christ, and that one thing is a theological education.
Now, Mr. editor, I never have thought, and never expressed through the medium of the press, any expression, to my knowledge, from which an inference could with any fairness be drawn, that I supposed an education alone was sufficient to constitute a gospel minister. I did say, and I say now - and I am quite sure I express the sentiments of a very large majority of the most influential and intelligent Baptists in this State - that there is no hope for Pennsylvania other than through educated ministers. By “hope in a ministry,” educated or uneducated, K. will understand me to refer to the ministry as an agent appointed of God! and not to it as the primary cause of salvation.”
We rescue from oblivion this shattered fragment, not on account of its intrinsic value, nor yet because we approve of the sentiment it contains; but because the writer is quite sure he expresses the sentiment of a very large majority of the most influential and intelligent Baptists in Pennsylvania, when he declares there is no hope for that State other than through educated ministers! What daring arrogance in this conceited man, this sapient offspring of the Baptist abomination at Hamilton, N. Y., thus to challenge the truth of God! and prescribe limits to divine omnipotence, asserting at the same time that he is sustained in his wickedness by a very large majority of influential and intelligent Baptists of Pennsylvania.
Whether Mr. T. is supported by many or by few, effects not the merits of his cause with us. He, with his Pennsylvania majority; may be satisfied with popular influence and what the world calls intelligence; but such confirmation cannot satisfy the Old School, Bible Baptists; they must know what God has said on this subject. In searching the scriptures we find our Lord Jesus Christ set forth, (and not educated ministers,) as the only hope of Israel, and the Savior thereof in time of trouble. - See Jer. xiv. 8. And his language is, “Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth, (Pennsylvania is included, of course,) for I am God, and there is none else.” - Isa. lxv. 22. “Neither is there salvation in any other.” - Acts iv. 12. hence, we prove that the hope, yea, the only hope of Pennsylvania, and of all the ends of the earth, is in the Lord, and not in men. “Happy is he whose hope is in the Lord.” - Psa. clxvi. 5.
The New Testament Baptists have for the last eighteen hundred years believed that the salvation of all God’s elect was securely fixed in Jesus, the Mediator of the new covenant, before the highest part of the world was made, and so completely secured that neither life, nor death, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate them from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus, our Lord.
The salvation of sinners can in no way depend on the ministers of the gospel, neither the learned nor the rude. God has not trusted their own lives to their own keeping, (much less the everlasting destiny of others,) for their life is hid with Christ in God. - Col. iii. 3.
To the work of the gospel ministry it has been the sovereign pleasure of God to call the most illiterate of men. “Ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are called: for God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; and base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen; yea, and things which are not, to bring to naught things that are: that no flesh should glory in his presence. - 2 Cor. i. 26-29. In perfect accordance with the doctrine of the foregoing scriptures the good Master, in the days of his sojourn on earth, selected his ministers from the fishing boats, receipt of custom, &c., not because there were no others accessible, for be had received power over all flesh; yea all power in heaven and on earth is vested in him; yet he passed by the learned scribes and the literati of that age, and hid these things from the wise and prudent, and revealed them unto babes: “even so Father, for so it seemed good in thy sight.” Now we say if the plan of infinite wisdom had failed to secure the accomplishment of the design which God had intended, it would then have been early enough for this sagacious Levi, with his intelligent influentials, to have issued their presumptuous proclamation. Our Lord was aware that his plan in this particular would have to encounter the opposition of the learned and worldly-wise, yet he who saw the end from the beginning, was pleased to commit “this treasure to earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power thereof may be of God, and not of men.
NEW VERNON, N. Y.,
Nov. 26, 1834.
Elder Gilbert Beebe
Editorials Volume 1
Pages 181 – 184