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THE wife of one of the missonaries in Burmah writes: “In Tavoy, there were baptized the last dry season, about a hundred Karens.” What say our anti-missionary brethren? Is this work of heaven, or of men? Judge ye. If this work be not of the Lord, why has he not ere this brought it to nought? Does not these indications declare to you that heathens are becoming the inheritance of the Lord, and the uttermost parts of the earth his possession? - Banner

REPLY: What shall we say to such potent arguments - such convincing testimonials as these? One hundred Karens baptized the last dry season! And this intelligence established on the assertion of the wife of a missionary at Burmah! And yet the anti-missionaries are required to give an opinion, Whether this be the work of men, or of God? We doubt not that our querist intended to strike the poor anties dumb, when he made this knock down appeal. We have also been informed (not by the wife of a missionary) that the Roman Catholics are receiving great accessions to their church in the Western Valley, and have probably received more than one hundred during the dry times in our country. Say, Mr. Waller, does this not prove that the Roman Catholics are from heaven? We are informed by the American Baptist, that infidelity and crime are gaining ground in the city of New York. Is infidelity and crime from heaven?What say you, Mr. W.? “If this work be not of the Lord, why has he not ere this brought it to nought?” Pray tell us, Mr. W., as you are learned, which has been of the longest standing, the Burman Mission, or the Catholic faith? And if the long standing of the one will prove its heavenly origin, why will not the same set of arguments prove the same in regard to the other? Surely these questions are in point, and those who are denominated “anti-missionary brethren,” are called on to answer them; therefore let the answer be given in truth and soberness; and let our answer be handed over, through the columns of the Banner, for the consideration of the patrons of that paper, who have witnessed the demand.

First. Does the number of converts embracing any religious profession, prove the religion which they embrace to be of God? If this question can be answered affirmatively by authority of the word of God, we admit its bearings will be exceedingly disasterous to the little flock, known in our day as Old School Baptists. But the doctrines of the Pope, and the dream of the false Prophet, will be established, on this kind of testimony, in preference to those of the New School Baptists.

Second. If antiquity be the point on which the argument is to rest, while Popery and Mahomet’s delusions stand far, very far, in advance of the New Schoolism, yet the Old School excel them all in these respects, for their origin in visible gospel order has its date at the day of pentecost.

Third. The main question seems to be, whether this work which has resulted in the baptism of a hundred Karens in a dry season, is from heaven, or of men? We answer, in our candid opinion, deliberately made up on the force of testimony, It is of MEN.

In evidence that we are not mistaken, we will refer our readers to the records of the missionary institutions, and to their own numerous publications, in which they have given abundant demonstration that the Burmah Mission is the work of men, from first to last, as witness the following “Shorter Catechtsm.

Question. Who commenced the Burman Baptist Mission?

Answer. L. Rice and A. Judson.

Q. By whom were they sent as Baptist Missionaries?

A. By the American Baptist Board of Foreign Missions.

Q. Was this board composed of men?

A. It was.

Q. On whom did Rice and Judson call for patronage in this work?

A. On men.

Q. For what kind of support did they call?

A. Money.

Q. Have the Agents of the Foreign Mission Board ever hinted, or said, that unless men would contribute liberally to the funds of the Society, this mission would fail?

A. They have once and again.

Q. Have these missionaries ever represented that the bestowment of gold and silver, ear-rings, and ladies’ jewelry, might save some, yea, many precious souls from the quench-less fires of hell, where without them they must suffer to all eternity?

A. They have.

Q. Has the Pope of Rome ever published a more anti-scriptural or abominable sentiment, or one that more fully proves his opposition to the cause and truth of God, to be the work of men?

A. He has not to our knowledge.

On the whole, let Mr. Waller, or any other advocate, prove to us that the Lord has authorized these institutions, or that he has by his word and Spirit sustained or aided them, and we will yield the argument. But why, says our champion, are they not ere this brought to nought? Does the writer thus intend to dare the thunderbolts of divine vengeance? We say to him, Beware! “What if God willing to show his wrath, and to make his power known, endureth with much long-suffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction.” - Romans ix 22.

May 19, 1837.

Elder Gilbert Beebe
Editorials Volume 1
Pages 385 – 388