BROTHER BEEBE: – Since some of us have been so refreshed by the good news that our Brethren are holding conferences in different and distant parts: consulting each others views in reference to the Old and New Schools, I have been requested to send you the following for publication. At the last session of the Chemung Assn. there was a resolution passed in substance as follows:
Resolved. That whereas we profess to believe the Scriptures are the only rule of faith and practice; we recommended to the churches to appoint Delegates to meet on the third Thursday in January next, at Franklin, to compare our articles and practice with the Bible: and if our Articles or practice does not agree therewith, endeavor wherever the fault may be, to point out the same; and recommend such reformation to the churches as shall agree with the rule God has given.
Pursuant to appointment there met at Franklin, Bradford Co. Pa. January 10, 1834, from the church in Sullivan, Elder John Sawyer, and Eli Gitchell, and Brethren with them. From the church in Orwell, and Sheshequin, myself and some Brethren. From the church in Canton, some Brethren. The above met with the church in Franklin, and some visiting Brethren. We were informed that the churches in Columbia Wells, and Warren, had appointed Delegates but – providence prevented their meeting with us. From some of the churches we had no specific information.
After the meeting was opened, and some remarks made; the articles of the Chemung Baptist Association were read, and we were satisfied with all but one of them. The 7th Art. in relation to a Gospel administrator in the ordinance of Baptism, was put over for consideration until the next day.
Several remarks were made in relation to the present movements of the day; and it was found that there was some minds entangled with some of the popular schemes and it seemed to be difficult for them to see what others said they did in them. Adjourned till To-morrow.
Elder Gitchell preached from Eph. i, 4. It was then proposed to adjourn, partly because there were so few present. After some general remarks, some wished that we would state things particular. In answer to which the following was read to them.
First. The formation of Societies for religious purposes, or for evangelizing the world upon a monied base, where money, and not christian fellowship, gives membership and office: thus amalgamating the church with the world.
Second. The great importance attached to a Classical Education, as a qualification for preaching the Gospel of Christ.
Third. The mechanical operations used in order for the conversion of sinners; embracing the idea of the professed benefit of a person’s leaving one comfortable seat in the place of worship to take another in order to be prayed for.
If for the support of these things, our brethren can show us scripture, precepts or example; we should rejoice to accompany them ourselves, but if not we cannot unite with them, in them. To the law, and testimony we submit: without it we dare not go. We then adjourned to meet on Tuesday before the second Wednesday in Sept. next, at 10 o’clock A.M. Which is the day before the next session of our Association.
Signs of the Times
Volume 2, No. 7
March 5, 1834