A DEBATE ON THE DOCTRINE OF ATONEMENT,
REV. JOEL HUME
OF POSEY COUNTY, IND.,
OF THE REGULAR BAPTIST CHURCH,
REV. BENONI STINSON,
OF VANDERBURGH COUNTY, INDIANA,
OF THE GENERAL BAPTIST CHURCH.
COMMENCING ON THE THIRTY-FIRST DAY OF MARCH, And CLOSING ON THE FOURTH DAY OF APRIL, 1863.
REPORTED BY WILLIAM LEACH, OF POSEY CO., IND.
CINCINNATI, O: E. MORGAN & CO., PRINTERS
TABLE OF CONTENTS
RULES OF DISCUSSION.
PART I -- DEBATE ON THE PROPOSITIONS OF MR. STINSON. FIRST DAY'S DEBATE.
MR. STINSON'S FIRST PROPOSITION That Jesus Christ, by his death and resurrection, made a full and complete atonement or satisfaction to the Adamic law for the whole human race, and also a possible salvation for all men from actual sins.
MR. STINSON'S SECOND PROPOSITION That man is a moral agent, endowed with the volition of free will, capable of choosing or refusing eternal salvation as it is proposed in the gospel.
MR. STINSON'S THIRD PROPOSITION That personal salvation is free to all men, and offered to all on certain conditions, to be performed by man, the performance of which, results in his salvation.
PART II -- DEBATE ON THE PROPOSITIONS OF MR. HUME.
MR. HUME'S FIRST PROPOSITION That the elect of God or church of Christ was chosen in him, before the foundation of the world, and that Christ died for them only, and that all that Christ died for will be eternally saved.
MR. HUME'S SECOND PROPOSITION That personal salvation, so far as relates to the future world, is the effect of the sovereign grace of God, bestowed upon sinners unconditionally.
HON. M.T. CARNAHAN, PRESIDENT
REV. T.M. STRAIN.
HON. S.M. HOLCOMB,
CUSTOM renders it necessary, in offering to the public a new book, to give, by way of introduction, some reasons for its publication.
The Baptist Church in Southwestern Indiana, as in many other places, is divided into two distinct bodies; the one called Regular Baptists, with which Elder HUME stands connected, and the other called General Baptists, with which Elder STINSON is connected.
The teachings of these two bodies, upon the doctrine of Atonement, differ materially, and as neither of them has a written creed or confession of faith, other than a few articles which are too brief to afford a satisfactory view of the doctrines they hold, the want of something more fully setting forth their views on the points of difference has been seriously felt.
The impossibility of conveying to the public a clear understanding of nice points of theological doctrine, in brief oral sermons, is known to all who are familiar with such matters.
Erroneous and conflicting views and frequent misrepresentations are the necessary results of the attempt to disseminate the peculiar doctrine of a religious denomination, without some standard book setting forth their understanding of the teachings of GOD'S word, to which reference may be had.
The interest manifested by those who listened to the debate, as well as the earnest desire, expressed by many persons, that the debate might be published, is another reason offered for its production.
With a view to getting a correct report of the discussion, the services of MR. WILLIAM LEACH, who was understood to be a competent reporter, were secured.
The debaters agreed that each of them should name one person, who, together with the Moderators, should constitute a committee to revise the report and have it published.
Elder HUME selected REV. JAMES STRICKLAND, and Elder STINSON, A. H. POLK.
MR. CARNAHAN, owing to the inconvenience of his location, was, at his own request, excused from meeting with the committee.
The volume is submitted to the public, hoping that it will in some measure supply the deficiency so long felt, by giving the teachings of each and the objections to the teachings of the other of those Churches, in the form of a book, by those who are acknowledged to correctly represent their respective bodies.
GOSHEN FARM, January 5, 1863
ELDER JOEL HUME: --
Dear Sir: -- Inasmuch as there seems to be a wide difference between the doctrines of your denomination and those of the one to which I belong, and as that difference is variously explained by different ministers of those denominations, I have thought that an investigation of the main points of difference might, if conducted in a Christian spirit, be satisfactory to the public.
Should the proposal meet your approbation, please inform me, after which we can settle the points and arrange the time, place, etc.
POSEYVILLE, IND., January 19, 1863.
ELDER B. STINSON: --
Dear Sir: -- Yours of the 5th instant is now before me, the contents of which have been carefully noted. You are disposed to believe that good would result to the people generally, from a public discussion between you and myself, upon those theological points upon which we differ. I am anxious to do all the good that I can, but I assure you that my combative propensities have been much weakened in the last few years. Nevertheless, if you and your friends think that the cause of truth can be promoted or advanced by such a discussion, I will yield to your wishes, provided the propositions and preliminaries can be properly arranged. The positions should fairly and fully embrace the points of difference between us, which you will please submit in your next to me.
Yours, with sentiments of respect,
GOSHEN FARM, January 25, 1863.
ELDER JOEL HUME:--
Dear Sir: -- Yours of the 19th instant has been received and carefully read. I am not in the habit of debating, nor is my anxiety in this instance so great as to urge a debate upon an unwilling opponent, nor would I by any means be understood as wishing to force a debate upon you; hence, if there is any reluctance on your part, let the matter end, and we will remain friends. But if you are perfectly willing, and we can agree on the propositions, etc., all, I hope may pass off friendly and profitably. But I think you require too much in asking me to submit the propositions on both sides.
I am willing, on my part, to affirm:
1st. An unconditional general atonement as the procuring cause of the world's redemption.
2nd. That man is a moral agent, endowed with the volition of free will, capable of examining and comparing propositions, to choose one and refuse the other.
3d. And that personal salvation is free to all men, and offered to all men on conditions to be performed on his part, the performance of which results in salvation, the neglect of which exposes him to damnation.
All of these I will expect you to deny.
I will expect you, on your part, to affirm:
1st, That the elect, or church, was chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world.
2nd, That Christ died or made an atonement exclusively for the elect, or church.
3d. That the sinner is saved unconditionally, or independent of anything that he can say or do.
If these propositions do not suit you, please point out, in your next, the changes that you wish made.
I remain, as ever,
With sentiments of esteem,
POSEYVILLE, IND., February 2, 1863.
ELDER B. STINSON:--
Dear Sir:-- Yours of the 25th of January was received by due course of mail, which has been read with some care. I have no desire to court sympathy from the masses, believing that the truth, if properly presented, will commend itself.
Your first proposition will be acceptable with the following alteration:
Was the suffering and death of the Saviour, or the atonement made by him, designed or intended by him to procure the future or eternal salvation of all the human race?
This proposition I will negative, which will be precisely the same as if I should affirm special or particular atonement. Your second proposition I will accept in the following order:
All men are moral free agents, having the power to accept or reject eternal salvation.
This proposition also I will negative.
Personal salvation, so far as relates to the future world, is the effect of the sovereign grace and mercy of God, bestowed upon sinners unconditionally, or without the agency of the sinner.
This proposition I will affirm. I will also affirm the following:
That all who are truly regenerated and born again, will be eternally saved.
Or, if you prefer it, I will affirm that the elect of God, or church of Christ, were chosen in him before the foundation of the world.
You can examine the foregoing and inform me of your objections, as I believe they fully embrace the points of difference between us, and whether we debate or not, I hope we shall remain friends.
Yours, in the good hope,
P.S. My principle objection to the propositions as submitted by yourself is that they are too ambiguous, or not sufficiently definite. J.H.
Goshen Farm, February 9, 1863.
ELDER JOEL HUME:--
Dear Sir:--Yours of the 9th instant came safely to hand, and after carefully examining its contents I hasten to reply. My third proposition seems either to have escaped your notice, or you thought it not worthy of attention, and as you thought the language of my propositions was too ambiguous, I will endeavor to be more definite.
1st. I will affirm that Jesus Christ, by his death and resurrection, made a full and complete atonement or satisfaction to the Adamic law for the whole human race, and also a possible salvation for all men from actual sin.
2nd. I will affirm that man is a moral agent, endowed with the volition of free will, capable of choosing or refusing eternal salvation as it is proposed in the Gospel.
3d. I will also affirm that personal salvation is free to all men and offered to all on certain conditions, to be performed by man, the performance of which results in his salvation.
The foregoing propositions fully embrace the doctrine of our denomination, on these great questions, and I shall expect you to negative each one.
Your first proposition is accepted with this amendment:
That personal salvation, so far as relates to the future world, is the effect of the sovereign grace of God, bestowed upon sinners unconditionally.
Your second proposition is accepted with this condition:
That the elect of God, or church of Christ, was chosen in him before the foundation of the world, and that Christ died for them only, and that all that Christ died for will be eternally saved.
Both of the above I will negative. Your article on the final perseverance of the saints I think is fully embraced in the above, and is therefore superseded.
You can examine the foregoing, and if it meets your approbation we can proceed to settle other preliminaries as to time, place, etc.
I remain as ever,
POSEYVILLE, IND., February 16, 1863.
ELDER B. STINSON:--
Respected Friend:-- Your favor of 9th of February has been received and carefully examined; and after more mature deliberation I have arrived at the conclusion, that we have more propositions submitted than are necessary to present the real points of difference between us, the discussion of which would occupy more time than I have to spare to devote in that way; consequently I propose that we confine ourselves to the two following propositions, which will cover all the ground, in my judgment:
The elect of God, or church of Christ, was chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world, and that Christ died for them only, and all that he died for will be eternally saved.
Hume will affirm and you deny
Personal salvation is free to all men, and offered to all on certain conditions to be performed by man, the performance of which results in his eternal salvation.
This you will affirm and I deny.
If these propositions suit you, the matter is settled so far as relates to propositions. All the preliminaries can be arranged, I have no doubt, without difficulty. Hoping to hear from you soon, I subscribe myself,
GOSEN FARM, February 22, 1863.
ELDER JOEL HUME:--
My Dear Friend:-- Yours of the 16th came safely to hand, and after reading and carefully examining its contents, I again hasten to reply. I feel sorry that you are in favor of narrowing down our proposed discussion to so small a basis as two single propositions. And you say, you have not time to spare, etc.
I may attach too much importance to such an investigation, but I feel confident that I do not nor can not attach too much importance to the great truths taught in the Bible, the right understanding of which has been my study for more than forty years. And now, shall we in our old age allow ourselves to be so hurried as not to have time for so important an investigation that may affect the well-being of souls unborn?
It is my desire to have the debate (if we do debate) published, so that not only the present but future generations may read and judge for themselves. You will therefore pardon me for not agreeing to your suggestion of but one proposition on a side. I feel to adhere to my affirmatives as you find them in my last, and prefer that you should to the two laid down on your part. I need not repeat them as they are all clearly stated in my last to you.
If when we meet we should both conclude to drop any proposition, all right; if not, let them remain as they are.
And now, Elder Hume, as our correspondence upon the propositions has been somewhat lengthy, and you have in this my final answer, which I think you certainly will accept, let me suggest Owensville as a suitable place, leaving it to you to set the time, and also the mode of discussion. President, Moderators, etc. Please let me hear from you soon.
Yours, as ever, in good hope,
POSEYVILLE, IND., February 26, 1863.
ELDER B. STINSON:--
Dear Sir:-- Yours of the 22nd instant came to hand this evening, which I have carefully read. I confess I can not see the necessity, or even the propriety, of my affirming what my negative of your proposition will as fully establish, as I shall be able to do. Nevertheless, let the matter remain as set forth in your last to me, at least until we meet, for I have no objections to the propositions as set forth by yourself, only, as I believe, we shall travel over the same ground twice. If we meet at all, I desire our propositions and arguments to cover all the grounds of difference between us, which I believe the two propositions named in my last would fully accomplish.
I have no objections to Owensville as the place for the discussion, and I would suggest Tuesday after the fourth Monday in March as the time to commence. You choose one Moderator and I one, and they choose their own President. The rules by which the discussion is to be governed can be agreed upon after we meet. If the debate is published, we should have a good stenographer in attendance every hour. If the suggestions here meet your approbation, please inform me immediately; if not, please inform me in what particular you wish them changed.
Yours, as ever,
GOSHEN FARM, March 5, 1863.
Dear Sir:--I received your last communication on Saturday. The arrangement is all satisfactory, only I prefer that we should meet one week later, which will be the last day of March. If this suits you, we will consider the matter settled.
I have selected Elder T. M. Strain for my Moderator. You can select yours and they can either choose a President by correspondence or meet for that purpose.
I remain, as ever, your friend,
RULES OF DISCUSSION.
1. The debate shall be held at the General Baptist Church in Owensville, Gibson County, Indiana, commencing on the 31st day of March, 1863, and continue until through.
2. Each disputant shall choose a Moderator and they shall select a third, who shall act as President.
3. The President shall call to order; invite some person present to open each session with prayer, and close it with the benediction; see that the rules of decorum are observed by the debaters and the audience; decide all questions of order, and attend to such other as usually devote on presiding officers.
4. In the opening of each new subject the affirmant shall occupy one hour, and the respondent the same length of time. Each subsequently shall alternately occur half an hour until the subject is disposed of.
5. No proposition shall be discussed for more than one day nor less than a half day, unless by agreement of the debaters.
6. The debate shall open precisely at 10 o'clock A.M., and close at 12 noon each day, and in the afternoon commence at 2 o'clock and close at 4.
7. On the final negative no new matter shall be introduced.
8. King James' translation of the Holy Scriptures, generally known as the common version, shall be the umpire on all biblical questions, but either party may refer to other translations, commentaries and writings and to prove the correctness of his interpretations.
9. The debaters shall confine their remarks strictly to the proposition under discussion, and shall refrain from all personalities and unchristian language.
10. The following propositions shall be discussed agreeably to the above rules:
Elder Stinson affirmed the three following propositions--Hume denied them:
1st. That Jesus Christ, by his death and resurrection, made a full and complete atonement or satisfaction to the Adamic law for the whole human race, and also a possible salvation for all men from actual sins.
2d. That man is a moral agent, endowed with the volition of free will, capable of choosing or refusing eternal salvation, as it is prospered in the gospel.
3d. That personal salvation is free to all men, and offered to all on certain conditions to be performed by man, the performance of which results in his salvation.
Elder Hume affirmed the two following propositions--Stinson denied them:
1st. That the elect of God, or church of Christ, was chosen in him before the foundation of the world, and that Christ died for them only, and that all that Christ died for will be eternally saved.
2d. That personal salvation, so far as relates to the future world, is the effect of the sovereign grace of God bestowed upon sinners unconditionally.
DOCTRINE OF ATONEMENT
PART I -- DEBATE ON THE PROPOSITIONS OF MR. STINSON.
FIRST DAY'S DEBATE.
AFTER prayer by the Rev. Thomas Walker, the Hon. M.T. Carnahan, the president, rose and read the following proposition as the subject for the first day's debate, and of which Mr. Stinson took the affirmative, and Mr. Hume the negative:
MR. STINSON'S FIRST PROPOSITION
That Jesus Christ, by his death and resurrection, made a full and complete atonement or satisfaction to the Adamic law for the whole human race, and also a possible salvation for all men from actual sins.
Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen: I rise before you as the affirmant of that proposition; and this I do, feeling the great responsibility which rests upon me in the undertaking. In the first place, I am aware that the proposition, however candidly believed by me, will be denied by my opponent; hence, strong opposition will be expected from that source.
The imperfection that attaches itself to humanity is sensibly felt by your unworthy speaker; hence, I do not possess the vanity to suppose that I shall be able to represent a system that will not be objectionable in many respects. I am aware of the strength of my opponent. He is a man who has frequently engaged in public debates. I am aware of his strength as a debater, and of his great influence as a minister in his own denomination. There is one consolation, however, that, up to the present time, all my acquaintance with Elder Hume has continued to confirm me in the first conviction I had of him, that he is conscientiously a Christian, and by deportment a gentleman. From such a source I may expect strong opposition, though I shall look for it in a gentlemanly and Christian manner. Secondly, I am aware of the importance of this undertaking from the magnitude of the subject that is to be investigated.
However much may be attached to the wording of our propositions, the debate or controversy will be discovered to be a controversy, between general and particular atonement; one, that is by no means new. The greatest minds, and the most brilliant lights of the church, have been brought into active effort on this subject, for the last fourteen hundred years, occasionally. The writings of these great men have become public property. Each side has been so thoroughly investigated that nothing very new may be expected on this occasion. I should quail before the importance of the subject, were it not that I have been deliberating and investigating and reading upon the subject for forty and three years; all of which time I have risked my salvation on my understanding of its truth. Believing, then, that truth is mighty and must prevail, I rely upon this great principle to enable me to bear an humble part in its support. I would invoke the divine assistance; I will look to the throne of grace; I would ask of him that said "Let there be light, and there was light," to guide me in the important undertaking.
The proposition has been read by the president: "That Jesus Christ, by his death and resurrection, made a full and complete atonement or satisfaction of the Adamic law for the whole human race, and a possible salvation for all men from actual or personal sin." The wording of this proposition may not be as perfect as it should be, but it is believed to be so definite that the people who are most directly interested in the debate may correctly understand it.
Our first thought is called to the doctrine that Jesus Christ, by his death, made a full and complete atonement to the Adamic law. In approaching this subject, I propose to make two brief arguments; the first is founded on the necessity of such an atonement or satisfaction; the second is founded on the ability of the character offered to make that atonement. Having briefly noticed these two arguments, we shall then endeavor to establish, by Scripture evidence, that the work was done.
Our first point of argument, then, is the necessity of such atonement being made. This will appear at once, if we take into consideration the condition of mankind on account of sin. This will bring us to notice the fall of man; original sin; the transgression of Adam and its consequences; though we do not, in the present argument, expect to notice these in detail, but briefly. The penalty of the transgression was death. It subjects man to the penalty in its widest range, in its most extensive meaning. The history of the transaction shows that he was driven out of the Garden, and it was pronounced upon him, that "dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return." This is not all. Having sinned against God, he forfeited his favor; he lost the moral image of God; he became corrupt, fallen, depraved and ruined; under condemnation and without help, he was unable to extricate himself from his fallen state by any ability he possessed in his ruined condition. It is not only true that he needed help, but also that without help his condition is hopeless, gone, and that forever! From the deep recesses of his dark and ruined soul rises the very position of his being, crying for help. When he was lost and condemned, help could only be communicated in a way consistent with the honor of that law and dignity of God's character; and here let me say, all the posterity of man was involved in this transgression. To what source, then, can he look with any degree of success? Not to man; not to his own arm; even if he turns his eyes toward the angels, he finds no created being able to undertake the work of relief. God sees his fallen state; God discovers his necessity, and unsolicited, he introduces Jesus Christ to become a sacrifice, a redeemer, to make that necessary atonement to the law and satisfaction to justice; to open up or reveal a system by which man might not only be released from the guilt of original sin, but offered the salvation exhibited through the merits of Jesus Christ, and that it would be possible for all men to be delivered from personal or actual transgression. This meets the language of our proposition. I am glad to know that Jesus Christ possesses all the qualities requisite to this undertaking. We regard him as being of sufficient worth as an offering to satisfy the requirements of the law. We look upon him to be of that spotless holiness that would be calculated not only to satisfy justice, but atone to the law, and to magnify it and make it honorable.
The ability of Christ to affect or accomplish all that we have claimed for him to do, and asserted that he did do--his ability to perform this, we presume, will not be called in question, He was not only able and willing to take upon himself the great and glorious work, but willing to undertake the enterprise (if you might allow me the expression) of human redemption. Being able and willing to accomplish it, he possessed the wisdom; for in him was the fullness of the Godhead. We, therefore, bring these two arguments in connection with it, and feel some degree of boldness in entering upon our proof; believing as we do, that possessing the power and ability, the willingness and wisdom, we shall find that he did perform the work; that he did make a full and complete atonement to the Adamic law. And here permit me to make a remark or two, by way of explanation, as to what we mean by Adamic law. It is the law that God gave to Adam. We use the words Adamic law to distinguish it from the law that God gave to Moses; so we hope there will be no difficulty over the word.
We will first call your attention to the text Rom. v, 12, 18: "Wherefore, as by one man, sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death hath passed upon all men, for that all have sinned." Also, "Therefore, as by the offense of one judgment, came upon all men to condemnation; even so, by the righteousness of one, the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life." Here we have a parallel drawn between the sin of Adam and the atonement of Jesus Christ; here we have a parallel drawn between the fall of the first Adam and the righteousness and atonement by the second. I undertake to assert, in this connection, that the whole human race is represented by Adam in the transgression, and that they were all affected by original sin. When, therefore, the Apostle to Romans says, that by the disobedience of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation, I understand him to mean the human race entire. Hence, when he says that by the righteousness of one, the free gift came upon all unto justification of life, I understand him then, also, as meaning the human race.
This text, in my judgment, is directly in point, showing that the righteousness, that the death and resurrection of Christ, made a full and complete atonement to the law, or justification unto life never could have been the result. See I Cor. xv, 22: "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." The passage continues: "But every man in his own order; Christ the first fruits; afterward, they that are Christ's at his coming."
The point that I will call your attention to is, "that as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." This I regard a pointed proof of the fact affirmed by me and remarked to you, that here the Apostle is speaking of natural death; for it is in this chapter that he brings his masterly reasoning on the resurrection of the dead. Preaching on the language we have quoted, he takes up the monster Death and its sting, and the pains of human suffering, and death in consequence of original sin. He tells us, however, that even so in Christ shall all be made alive. My object in quoting this, in connection with the resurrection, is to show that it bears upon the atonement, and that the human race were affected or interested in the death of Jesus Christ, from the fact that if we fail to show an equal claim to the blood of the covenant, to the blood of the atonement, for all the human race, we may not fail to show that by virtue of Christ's resurrection all men are to be raised from the dead. Hence we argue, that as Adam placed all under the grave, through death, so Christ's death and resurrection releases them by raising them from the dead. Please to bear this point of proof in view: Christ's righteousness takes them out of the grave, not to be judged according to their works. We now call your attention to I Timothy ii, 4: "Who will have all men to be saved, and come unto the knowledge of the truth." Permit me to paraphrase this text. Let my worthy opponent not accuse me of wanting to change it. "Who will have all men to be saved and come unto the knowledge of the truth." My understanding of this would come from this reading: "who is willing that all men should be saved, by coming to a knowledge of the truth." This is my understanding of it. See 6th verse of the same chapter: "Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time."
Here we have the subject of the atonement introduced in the similitude of a ransom. And it is asserted by the Apostle to Timothy, that Christ gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time. As I progress, allow me to say something with regard to its being testified.
There was a time when he gave himself a ransom. That time was when he died upon the cross, and ransomed fallen man from the curse of the law. This glorious truth, this blessed and soul-cheering doctrine of a ransom was to be testified. It was a ransom for all, a salvation free to all, and that salvation was to be testified by a public demonstration of its truth, in all ages and to all men, and this would be in due time to meet the condition of every man.
We will now call your attention to 2 Cor. v, 14,15: "For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: and that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again." I understand the Apostle to say, that the boundless love of Christ constrained him to say that if one died for all, then they were all dead.
My friends, can any language be plainer? Let us, for the sake of argument, transpose it. The love of Christ constraineth us, because we thus judge, that as all were dead, so, one died for all. Does it change the meaning? Does it make it different in effect or principle? If one died for all, then were all dead; and if all were dead, then one died for all. There will, perhaps, be no controversy with regard to all being dead, or condemned by original sin. How my worthy friend will explain this to be otherwise, remains to be seen, when he stands in his place. The same principle precisely is taught to the Hebrews that is taught to the Corinthians, that Christ tasted death for all men. But we will quote a little more: "We see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor; that he, by the grace of God, should taste death for every man;" I undertake to say that "every man," means the human race and that precisely the same doctrines are taught in Hebrews that are taught in Corinthians. The principle is found upon the supposed admission of the fact that all were dead, that every man was dead; therefore, he, by his crucifixion, tasted death for every man.
We call your attention to the gospel by St. John iii, 16, 17. "For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." "God so loved the world;" I understand "the world" to mean the human race.
If my friend is capable of making it out to mean anything else, he will have the privilege of doing so. I understand it to mean all mankind, all that needed help, in their fallen state. We continue the 17th verse: "For God sent not his son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world, through him, might be saved." He so loved the world that he sent his only son that the world might be saved by believing in him. Lest Nicodemus might misunderstand, lest the dark heart of the Pharisee might misunderstand him, he tells them he did not send his son to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved. Upon these words, "might be saved," upon these and many kindred passage, we rely for a possible salvation for all men. We will call your attention to Luke xix, 10: "For the Son of Man is come to seek and save that which was lost." The very same idea is contained in each quotation: "That which was lost; that which was dead; that which had fallen, and was condemned." Now, look at Romans, second chapter eleventh verse: "For there is no respect of persons with God."
Here, this may afford us a key to understand why these declarations have been made; this may afford us a key to understand why it is that Paul said "all" in Romans; why he said "every man" in Hebrews; why it is that he said "all men," in another place; and "all the world" in another. Why could the Apostle, and other inspired writers use such indefinite language? why could they boast of the love of God to the human race, and to the world? for the best reason, that God was no respecter of persons. Acts x, 34, 35. "Then Peter opened his mouth and said, of a truth, I perceive that God is no respecter of persons, but in every nation, he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him." Peter and Paul seem to be of the same opinion, and I regard them as credible witnesses: Paul said that there was no respect of persons, and Peter was thoroughly convinced (which, by the by, was a very hard matter--it took a revelation from heaven to convince Peter of this great truth). Once he had believed that God was a respecter of persons; he believed that salvation was confined alone to the Jews; and that, therefore, God was a respecter of persons, but he was convinced of his error (and no man could help being convinced who saw and felt what Peter saw and felt). I almost hope my worthy friend will be convinced as Peter was convinced. I surely think a vision of less magnitude would bring him to a knowledge of the truth of this doctrine. Now, see Romans x, 12: "For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek; for the same Lord over all, is rich unto all that call upon him."
Here the same doctrine is carried forth; no difference between the Jew and the Greek; the same Lord is rich unto all; carrying out the doctrine that the blessings of salvation are offered to all, to the Jew and to the Greek, to the barbarians and Scythians, to the bond and free of all countries and nations.
We will now take you back to the good old prophet Isaiah, xiv, 22: "Look unto me all ye ends of the earth, and be ye saved."
By the ends of the earth, I understand all men; salvation is provided, and is proposed or promised to the ends of the earth.
Now, to Matthew xxviii, 19: "Go ye, therefore, and teach all nations." Now, bear in mind, this is the language of the great commission, commanding them to go to all nations; it also commands "that they shall be taught."
Now to Mark xvi, 15: "Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature;" carry the good news of salvation.
I ask, could language be more definite and general? The man who takes this commission in his heart, is told to go and preach to EVERY creature. Can you find a human being that he is not commanded to preach the gospel to. In the name of consistency itself, can he find a human being who is not interested to hear that gospel. Here is Luke's version of the commission. See Luke xxiv, 46 and 47. "And said unto them, thus it is written; and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day; and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem." The remission of sins being connected with repentance here, we regard it as being as extensive as the command to repent. Upon this we make our stand. Christ says, that as a legitimate consequence of his death and resurrection, repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. From this text we see that the promise of remission is as extensive as the command to repent.
We will call your attention to Acts xvii, 30: "And the times of this ignorance, God winked at, but now commandeth all men everywhere to repent."
This is Paul's language at Athens; it is his language in that mighty appeal he made at Mars Hill, when he discovered an inscription "to the unknown God." Here he refers to the darkness that covered the earth, before Christ came; he says God winked at it, but now he commands all men everywhere to repent. I can see no exception to this declaration--all men, everywhere. It appears to me to mean the whole of the human race, and I can not understand it in a more limited sense. He commands all men everywhere to repent, and that commandment is founded on the fact that repentance and remission of sins is to be preached by virtue of death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. (Time expired).
HUME'S FIRST SPEECH
ON THE FIRST PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen: -- I appear before you on this occasion under a character different and entirely new to anything that has heretofore been realized or witnessed by you. I have no doubt in my mind but that there is a deep and abiding interest in the minds of this congregation, at least, a great portion of them, to know and understand the truth. I will not call in question the honesty of the worthy brother who has just taken his seat; I will attribute to him the same honesty of purpose that I feel and believe governs myself. I do not feel that I have any ambition to gratify upon this occasion. I was thinking, while the brother was speaking, that I desired upon this occasion three things especially First: The love of God in my heart. Second: The benign influence of the Holy Spirit to direct my course; and Thirdly: The honest and candid attention of the audience. Now, I desire these three things, and if the name of our heavenly Father can be glorified, and this respectable audience edified, I shall be abundantly rewarded for my labor upon this occasion. Our brother who has just taken his seat, has been candid and honest in the exhibition of his views in support of his proposition. He has told plainly, that he believes in the doctrine of universal atonement; that the Saviour did in his death and resurrection, redeem the race of mankind from the claims of the Adamic law, and in that redemption introduced a plan by which those redeemed might be saved. Notwithstanding I am aware of the fact that the great mass of the professed Christian world is on that side of the question, unfortunately, or fortunately, I am on the opposite side, for I do not believe the doctrine; so that I will be just as honest in the position I assume, as he is in his. That we may fairly and clearly understand the issue between us, I will remark that if he is right, I am wrong; and if I am right, then he is wrong; and if either or both of us are wrong, then there are thousands who are identified with us that are wrong as well as we.
There is certainly no subject that engrosses the attention of the sons and daughters of earth more important. It possesses such intrinsic merit that it is worth all others that we have ever thought of, because all other subjects have to do with this one. The benefits of other subjects end when our lives end; but this one carries us into eternity; consequently, every intelligent mind ought to feel deeply interested in knowing the simple truth as God has revealed it upon this great subject. The gentleman presents his first argument upon the necessity of an atonement for all men. Now, it is known to every person acquainted with the rules of this discussion, that I have nothing to prove on this occasion. The burden of proof is on him; what I have to do is, to disprove or to show he has not sustained his position. In the first place, then, I would remark that in view of the character of the great God that he has made us, that there is presented no idea that would for a single moment suffer me to believe that under any possible circumstances he might be disappointed. When we contemplate his wisdom and his power, we are irresistibly forced to the conclusion that his wisdom comprehends all events, and that his power is sufficient to carry into effect all his divine intentions; consequently, if he possesses wisdom, understanding and power to accomplish--then, if his will is not accomplished, the idea is presented that God in some way suffers disappointment. Now, I think that can not be; for when I look at the Bible, I learn that he is of one mind, that he is the same yesterday, today and forever, without beginning, without end, and that known unto God are all his works from the beginning, and that one day with him is as a thousand years. I learn also from the sacred oracles, in view of the manifestation of his will as recorded by the prophets, this fact, when speaking of the character of God saying there is none else: I am God and there is none like unto me, I declare the things that are not, saying, my counsels shall stand. Now, with these remarks, you will discover that I can not consent to the idea that this Jehovah might be disappointed; but in the accomplishment of his will, he will never fail. This being the fact, I can not for a moment believe the sentiments advocated by my worthy brother. I can not believe that he sent his son to suffer for a single man who will ever suffer eternal pain. That there was a necessity for an atonement, is admitted, and that it is also admitted that without atonement, salvation could not have been realized. But that the atonement is universal, I have yet to be convinced, for I am sure that we have had no evidence in the speech that has just been delivered, that sets forth this fact. The language of the proposition says that the Saviour, by his death, made an atonement or satisfaction to the Adamic law. Did you hear any scriptures quoted touching upon that law? I confess I did not. But to proceed; when we examine the nature of an atonement and consequences growing out of it, I am irresistibly compelled to dissent from the views of my opponent, or else acknowledge the doctrine we both disbelieve, and that is the doctrine of Universalism. What is an atonement? Have you ever thought upon the matter? To whom shall we go for information? You surely would not be willing to take my definition, and I would not ask you to; and you would not be willing to take his definition, and he would not ask you. To whom then shall we go to learn something in regard to the meaning of the term atonement? Now, I suppose that when men are ignorant like myself, they are compelled to take as true the definition which the wise have left upon record in the lexicons of the age. We have it here. Mr. Webster says, that atonement in theology, "is an explanation for sin made by the personal sufferings of Jesus Christ." Now, if that be true, if Christ by his death and suffering has expiated sin, and that expiation embraces the race of men, that all men have had their sins washed away (for that is the meaning of the term); if the race of men has thus been delivered, I ask, in God's name, how any of them is to be lost? For this reason, if for no other, I can not receive the doctrine taught by my friend. Now, I do not want you to forget what the meaning of atonement is, for you must admit that Webster has given a proper explanation of it.
I say, then, if all men are redeemed, all men are saved, or else they are gone forever; it must be one of the two. I will now remark, if that be the case, that he has made an expiation for sin, and that it has been done for the race of mankind; then, if any portion of that race fail to enjoy heaven, is not God disappointed? What did he send his son for? We are told, "to die for the race;" consequently God intended the salvation of the race, and accordingly Christ died to expiate the sins of the race; but now we are told that the race is not saved. Just look at this, and fix it up for yourselves. This is one of the reasons why I can not take the gentleman's theory. We are told "that man is subject to the penalty of the law to its utmost extent." Now, if that is true, I learn, from the inspired writers, that "cursed is the man that continueth not in all things that are written in the book of the law to do them; consequently, if we do not continue to do all things that are written in the book of the law, we are gone forever, for the law is already cursing us, and unless we can redeem ourselves some other character must do it. Now, suppose we can, how many times can we be involved under the law; and how many redemptions will we need from it before we die? For if the atonement made by the Lord Jesus Christ has accomplished the redemption from under the law, no act can place us back there; if it can, then who is benefitted by the atonement? The law then holds its claims, and till those claims are satisfied, we are under its condemnatory sentence. I learn from Gal. iii, 13 "Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us;" that is the way we understand the redemption obtained by Christ.
The gentleman tells us that in consequence of the deranged condition of mankind by sin, for he says such was the nature of the fall that there was no help in angels or men; and he very beautifully alluded to the fact, that help could alone come from Jesus Christ. And yet, he seemed still to enforce the idea that the Lord Jesus Christ had in all his acts, in view, not only the salvation of what we sometimes term the Church of God, but had also in view the salvation of the race. He tells us that "the Saviour possesses sufficient power;" that is admitted--nobody calls in question his power--it being infinite; he is infinite in wisdom and almighty in power, comprehending all things from the beginning to the end, and he will enforce his divine requisition in spite of every opposition. We think he will do it.
Now, of the quotation from Romans v, 12, "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned." Now, the 18th verse: "Therefore, as by the offense of one, judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one, the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life." Now, if the doctrine taught by my friend, is true, that the very same number that had been made sinners by the transgression, is made alive by Christ--if the free gift is come upon all men, as (Stinson) says, did not that fit them for heaven? I would like to know what else a sinner can need, than what is presented here--justification unto life, the race of men justified by the death of Christ? I repeat, if they are justified unto life, what more do they need?
My dear friends, I ask you to think upon this: If the race of men is justified unto life, I ask, How can they be condemned? That is all I need as a sinner; let me be justified unto life, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and I am saved.
Now, I Cor. xv, beginning at the 19th verse. This is the last quotation I should have thought he would have taken to prove his doctrine. "If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the first fruits of them that slept; for since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead: for as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order; Christ, the first fruits, afterward they that are Christ's at his coming."
Now, I propose this question: Is there an individual here who understands the language, who can, without violation of that language, set forth any other characters than Christ and his at his coming? Again, I repeat, and I challenge the learned world to answer me, Whether they can get anybody else, in that connection, save Jesus Christ, and them that are his at his coming? These are the only ones brought to view here; and this quotation will utterly fail to establish the position of my friend, that Christ died for the race of men.
Now turn to I Tim. ii, 4. We will read from the first verse to the sixth: "I exhort, therefore, that first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and for all that are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty, for this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour, who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth, for there is one God and one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time."
Now, I must say, my views of the character of God seem to be somewhat different to those of some persons. I do not desire to transpose one sentence in this book (the Bible). They suit me precisely, just as they are. Now, the Apostle says, "who will have all to be saved;" and yet we are told, forsooth, that all will not be saved. Now, I would just ask, if God will have it so--if he will have all men to be saved, and yet some of that "all men" that he will have saved, are not saved--is the will of God accomplished? Now, look at it; mark the language, that God will have it, and yet we are told they will not all be saved. There is no sensible man; here who will say this is so. I understand, my friends, that the Apostle is here introducing, for the instruction of his brethren, a system of salvation that embraces the finally and eternally beatified in glory--I had like to have said, the elect of God. It embraces the whole human family that ever did believe the gospel, and those are the only men that will be saved; and we maintain that they will be saved. There is no mistake; God will not be disappointed.
Now, turn to 2 Cor. v. 14, 15: "For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge that if one died for all, then all were dead; and that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them and rose again."
Now, my worthy opponent told us that the ALL MEN brought to view here must mean--can not mean less than--the race of men. Now, admitting this for the sake of argument; the race of men are redeemed, consequently, unless something, in some way, gets them back under the law again (and in such a case, the consequences would be fearful), they are not only redeemed; but will be finally saved.
Now, I may as well commence right here as anywhere else to show, that, in reference to the meaning of the words all men, every man, the world, the whole world, etc., there is a vast amount of misunderstanding with the masses of mankind. I now take the ground that is these terms mean what our friend says they mean, then the facts that can be proved, and the consequences that would follow, would astonish with shame the congregation today. Well, what can be proved, if we admit the definition and explanation of our friend with regard to the meaning of these terms? I will prove that all living creatures in heaven and upon earth, and under it, and in the sea, and out of it, whether they be men or beasts, birds, fishes or reptiles, I care not what they be, I will embrace all; and if this word means what he says it means, I will prove that these all call upon the rocks to fall upon them and hide them from his wrath, for the great day of his wrath is come, and who is able to stand. That is not the worst. I will then prove that this very same "all things" praise God. Now, here is a paradox which no man can harmonize. If these terms mean what he says they mean, they never can be reconciled to the word of God. I suppose I had better prove it. Turn to Rev. v, 13. I know that the gist of this discussion turns upon the meaning of these terms. Now, mark: "And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, blessing and honor and glory and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever."
Now, have I proved my position? Now, just turn over this chapter, and you will see the whole of this contradicted. What does it say? "And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman and every freshman, hid themselves in the dens and rocks of the mountains, and said to the mountains and rocks, fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb, for the great day of his wrath is come, and who shall be able to stand?"
Now, turn to Luke ii, 10: "And the angel said unto them, fear not, for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people." Now, I maintain that the word ALL does not mean what my friend says it means; for here is an announcement which is declared to be glad tidings of great joy to all people, and yet it made one man mad. How good was this news to Herod, who, when he heard it, sent his men of war to kill all the little children under two years of age! If this was not good news to them, then the term all people does not mean the race of men. If otherwise it does mean so, then this news produced the strangest kind of an impression upon them.
Now turn to Matt. iii, 5: "Then went out to him Jerusalem and all Judea, and all the region round about Jordan; and were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins; but when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, `Oh generation of vipers! who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come.'" Now, does all here mean every one? and does it include that generation of vipers? It says all were baptized of him in Jordan. If we start upon that assumption, I confess I do not know where we shall land.
Now, to Luke xvi, 16. I have noted it down here. My brother terms every man to mean the human race. "The law and the Prophets were until John; since that time, the kingdom of God is preached, and EVERY MAN presseth into it." Now, I ask you, has this been so in your acquaintance, that every man pressed into the kingdom? Has there ever been a time, in any state or nation, when every man pressed into the kingdom of God? If you will show that, I will acknowledge your position. Here, then, you see, it will not do to accept his explanation. Now, as to the term "world," although it is composed of but few letters, it has twenty-two different meanings; and out of that twenty-two, there is but one single one that refers to the race of men. When you go home, look at your dictionary, and examine it closely. Now, if this be true, is it not a very flimsy system that has set its foundation of salvation on one of these twenty-two meanings?
Again, Luke ii, tells us that, at a certain period, there was a decree sent out from Caesar that all the world should be taxed; not only the world, but all the world. What had he to do with any nation but the Roman Empire? Had Caesar Augustus authority to tax any nation but his own? He was exercising authority over the land of Judea, and consequently had a right to tax Judea. But now the decree goes out that all the world is to be taxed. I repeat the question, Does this all the world mean any body else than the people over whom Caesare exercised sovereignty? Every man knows that mighty prince had no more right to tax any other people than the people of Indiana have to tax those of Kentucky. The term all the world here simply means the Roman Empire.
We now come to Luke xix, 10: "The Son of Man is come." What for? what is his mission? My friend says it is to redeem or to make reconciliation for the sins of the Adamic race. Is there anything about that in the verse? if there is, I have forgotten it. Let us see, how does it read? "For the Son of Man is come to save that which was lost." [To Stinson.] Did he do it, sir? Now, here is a nice point--a close point. Now, the old Baptists take the ground that the Son of God did what he came to do. He came to do a work, and that work was to save sinners; and we substantially believe he did what he came to do, and that in every single instance; and that under no circumstance has the Son of God been disappointed in regard to his intention. When on the cross, he exclaimed, "it is finished," he bowed his head and gave up the ghost. I believe it is a rule among debaters that the terms of the proposition and argument must be synonymous. Now, will you show me a single word here of the proposition under discussion, or anything like it? Now, understand me as believing that if the Son of Man came to save the lost, he did the work. We will now see Romans ii, 11: "For there is no respect of persons with God." And again in the Acts of the Apostles: "For I perceive of a truth that there is no respect of persons with God, but in every nation he that feareth him and worketh righteousness is accepted with him." Now, I would ask you, who are the workers of righteousness? Are you not aware that some have no fear of God before their eyes, and can we ever enjoy God until we are born again? Can we work righteousness until our affection for sin is killed, and our soul in love with God? Wherever an individual may be found that hates sin and who desires to love God, wherever you find an individual of that character, of that class, there is no respect of persons. Now, in Col. iii, 25, where he, the Apostle, is speaking of the obedience of children and servants, it is the same; no matter where he may be, or what character, in that particular there is no respect of persons, but everywhere those characters are received and acknowledged to be children of God. Now, with respect to the quotation from Isaiah xlv, 22, "Look unto me all ye ends of the earth and be ye saved, for I am God and there is none else." Now, what have the people, the Jews, been doing? They have been engaged in making idols of wood and stone, and bowing down to them and worshiping them; here Jehovah is reproving them for their idolatry; he calls to direct their minds from these idols; he tells them that they (the idols) can not see, there is no life in them, no heat in them--look not to these idols for I am God, I am the mighty God of all nations, east and west; therefore, wherever you are who desire salvation, look unto me, for I am God. That is the only idea presented here.
Matthew xxviii, 19: "Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost." Now, let us see, is not the command here to baptize as imperative as the command to teach? "Go ye therefore, teach all nations, baptizing them." Now, mark, baptize the nations you teach; will that explanation do? If that will not do, what will do? We suppose this will do: Teach all classes wherever you go, and baptize everywhere, of every order, class and character, that acknowledge the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Hence, you see, we are bound to discriminate in these passages. We can not, to give the language its full force; we must understand the scriptures from the connection in which they stand. Again, "Go ye therefore into all the world, preach the Gospel; he that believeth shall be saved." Now, there is not a word here about redemption--about the Adamic law. There is not a sentence here about the proposition. Let us have one subject at a time--let us discuss the merits of the atonement, and when that is settled, then we can speak of the glorious gospel of the Son of God, saying, go ye, teach all nations; tell them that Christ has died and that in him alone is their salvation; let them know that he is exalted to give repentance; let them know he is the king in Zion; it is him that has died and that has ascended on high; tell them this gospel brings the glorious news of deliverance, and promises a home in heaven to all them that believe. Now, friends, we should never allow our human sympathies to bias our minds upon this subject. We are here to investigate the truth. Now, if it is true that God loves all the race of men alike, everybody ought to know it. I have a number of friends whom I esteem very highly, that I would like them to know it. I once said to a brother minister, I will go fifty miles to hear you preach on a certain portion of scripture. (The portion I alluded to is in the ninth chapter of Romans, where it speaks of vessels of wrath fitted to destruction.) Our friend has told us that it was the divine wish and intention of Christ to save the race. Oh, that I might be able to comprehend, in the end of our sufferings here, the salvation of this respectable audience. Today there is not a creature here that I would not take by the hand and say, come and go with me to Jesus. But while that is true, it is equally true that there are some who will not be saved. I had like to have said, some that can not. The reason why they can not, is because they will not. (Time expired.)
SECOND DAY'S DISCUSSION.
STINSON'S SECOND SPEECH.
HIS REPLY TO HUME.
After prayer, Mr. Stinson rose and said:
Mr. President, Gentlemen and Ladies: It becomes my duty again this morning to appear before you as the affirmant of the proposition read to us by our worthy President.
On yesterday I undertook, in the time allotted to me, to support that proposition by argument and scripture. How far I succeeded in that attempt, is for you to judge and the community who will read the debate to determine, and not for me. My worthy opponent followed me in an hour's speech, in which he undertook, as was his privilege to do so, to convince you that I had accomplished a signal failure. This he did, or attempted to do, by endeavoring to convince you that my proof texts had no reference to my proposition, and did not establish it.
I may not be able this morning to follow him in all his remarks, or in every point he made in his endeavor to set aside my proofs and arguments. My memory is imperfect, and I am not very active in taking notes. I will, however, endeavor to trace the footsteps of my opponent, and if I should come to a place where he makes so long a stride that I can't see the mark, I will have to guess at the distance.
He commenced his reply by admitting the truth of one of the two arguments I started with; namely, that founded on the necessity of a general atonement or satisfaction to the Adamic law. He admitted the truth of the argument that there was a necessity, if I did not misunderstand him, and if I did he will correct me now; he admitted that the necessity existed with all the fallen race.
[Mr. Hume--I admitted the necessity of an atonement, but not of a general atonement.]
That meets all I intended to show--that he admitted the necessity of an atonement for the race. This is the point I call your attention to especially. In approaching my second argument he admits all that argument, with one exception. The point was made that Christ, as a mediator or savior, possessed the wisdom sufficient to accomplish a general atonement. (Turning to Hume) Do you admit that? In that argument I made another point--that he was willing to accomplish it. This my brother denied. If I remember he gave a reason for doing so, which was this: that if Jesus had been willing, or had so willed (which I regard as synonymous), that a general atonement would have been made; but because he did not will it, or was not willing it should be done, therefore it was not done. He undertook, in this connection, to make some very positive remarks. He quoted some passages, which I did not note down, (but I admit the correctness of his quotations,) to prove to you that the will of God must be accomplished in all things, or that God would be disappointed. This point he made distinct and clearly, and it is my privilege to take exceptions to it. I undertake to say, with the judgment and common sense and the little intelligence I possess, that I have not been able to discriminate between God's will and God's law. If the law of God is not the will of God, then I have entirely mistaken the correct understanding of his law. The position that my brother Hume takes is that the will of God must and will be accomplished, clearly asserts that the law of God must and shall be obeyed, and beyond a possibility of failure. Now, is this true, in fact? Is this position to be sustained by the word of God? If this position was true, then we should have had no trouble over the transgression of Adam in the Garden; there we have the law of God or the will of God transgressed. The violation of God's will is the violation of God's law; if it is his will that man should obey the law, (and with all my opponent's firmness, he will not deny this, that it is the will of God that his law should be obeyed;) then every time that law is disobeyed, the will of God is violated and is not carried out. But we are told, forsooth, that if it is not carried out, God must be disappointed. This point is made with something behind the throne. This point would not be made, unless he intended during this discussion at some time to show us that God had a secret will, that was not revealed; and that that secret will constituted the binding rule of human action, and then would come forth the consistent idea, that God's will must be done. Viewing this from another standpoint, if God's will must be accomplished in every particular, if every act, and deed and thought of the human race is not agreeable to God's will, does this imply the possibility that God may be disappointed?
We will again approach my proof texts, to show the use he made of them; in order to do this understandingly, let me remind you of the fact, that the proposition embraces two points; it may be called a double proposition. The first refers to the satisfaction of what I have termed the Adamic law; and the other has reference to the mediation of Christ, to the new and everlasting covenant or plan of salvation, as it is proposed in the gospel. Some of the proof texts introduced related to the one, and some to the other.
We will first call your attention to the proof connected with the first proposition, that he made full atonement or satisfaction to the Adamic law. In this connection, I must say, I was much surprised (though I must give my Brother Hume credit for great fairness in general) to see the play he undertook to make over the Adamic law, after I had explained what I meant by the term; that it was to distinguish Adam's transgression from the transgression of men in general. It will be remembered, that the scripture introduced upon this subject, was Romans v, 12, 18; and I Cor. xv. These texts were intended to apply directly to the Adamic sin or transgression of the law of God to Adam, and to the atonement made for that sin; but as the scriptures quoted in connection with that, are already reported, I beg leave to be allowed the privilege of quoting them without reading them in the Bible.
First, then, to Romans v. "By the disobedience of one man, a judgment came upon all unto condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all unto justification of life." Now, I say, this refers to the Adamic sin, from the fact, that it alludes to it distinctly, and draws a parallel between the first and second Adam. You will bear in mind, that the transgression of Adam consisted in one sin. I am not aware that Adam ever sinned, the magnitude of which after brought condemnation upon him. Adam is the only active agent in that transgression; the posterity involved in the condemnation were passive; but they were subject to the condemnation, by virtue of their relation to the parental head. I do not know that Elder Hume questioned the meaning of the word "all" here connected with those upon whom the condemnation came. I do not remember his objecting to that meaning the whole of the human race; if he object to it, let him do it now.
[Mr. Hume--I do object to it now.]
He says he objects to the word all, or to this meaning of it, in connection with the condemnation of Adam, meaning the human race. Here, let me bring Brother Hume against Brother Hume. He admitted and claimed the necessity of an atonement, in connection with the fall; but here he tells us, on the subject of condemnation on account of the fall, that the word all, does not mean the human race; so much for his consistency in that particular. I, however, take the responsibility of saying, it does mean the human race. Now, Elder Hume and myself, in this particular, are at issue; he has a right to his opinion, and I regard that privilege in him as a great benefit and a cardinal blessing; while I do this, I claim the same right, and I am glad to believe he allows it.
The rules of our discussion say, that King James' translation, or the common version, shall be the arbiter to determine different points of the debate; but ye may refer to other authorities or commentators. In order to sustain the interpretation I gave of the scriptures, upon this subject, I beg leave to consult others. I shall read from authors, though I know it will take up much of my time; but I wish to make sure work. I do not want this respectable audience to go away with my opinion. I do not want them to be left with my opinions balanced against Brother Hume's; for, perhaps, they would not know to which to attach the most importance. I wish to consult wise and learned men. Elder Hume and myself had the misfortune to be raised without a good education; neither of us lay any claim to a knowledge of the original languages in which the scriptures were first written; we have to take them as they stand, and draw the best conclusions we can. I will consult the distinguished commentator, Dr. A. Clark. (Time expired.)
MR. HUME'S SECOND SPEECH.
ON THE FIRST PROPOSITION.
Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen:--I have arisen before you this morning for the purpose of further prosecuting the negative of the proposition, read in your hearing, since the opening of the discussion. This morning, I humbly trust that this audience, as well as myself, are influenced by the desire to know the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth upon this deeply interesting, and vastly important subject. Such is the importance of the doctrine of the proposition before us, that upon it is suspended the salvation of sinners. All other parts or particles, however interesting in connection with the great system of salvation, must center in, and be drawn from, the doctrine of the atonement, as presented in the proposition you heard. The doctrine of this proposition has deeply interested the wise and the learned of all ages. Very much has been both said and written upon this subject, and I do not suppose, for a single moment, that I shall be able to accomplish that which much wiser heads than mine have failed to do, to convince the world of mankind of the truth of the position that I advocate, in regard to this proposition.
The religion of the Son of God, as well as its author has never met with a kind reception among men in general. The truths, as taught by him, were believed but by few. The very fact of a system of theology, taught and believed and received by mankind in unregeneracy, is evidence of itself conclusive of its fallacy, of the untruth of such a system, for mankind in nature do not know God; neither does mankind believe the revelation that God has given concerning his son; consequently, as remarked upon yesterday, I am aware of the prejudices I have to combat. I might remark here, that nine tenths of the Christian world are arrayed in opposition to the doctrine I advocate.
I would ask you, dear friends, what could induce a man to advocate such a doctrine? Can you believe, for a moment, that any other than the purest motives, could induce him thus to come in contact with the world of his fellowmen, upon a subject of such importance? Elder Stinson has given me credit for being a conscientious man in religion, and I must say, that if no other man believed with me, I am compelled to hold, these my views, till I get a different understanding. Consequently, believing it with all my heart, I advocate it with all the sincerity of my soul, believing that my eternal salvation is suspended upon the truth of the doctrine I advocate. Now only my own salvation, but of them that will be saved. I presume that my exception to Brother Stinson's remarks, were understood by the congregation. I admitted the necessity of an atonement, but I did not admit, neither do I now admit the necessity of an atonement to the Adamic law, for the whole race of man; for the very best of reasons, whenever I admit the doctrine of an atonement for the race of men (giving Webster's definition of the meaning of the term atonement), I have reconciled man to God, and made a heaven alike for the whole race of men, and, if reconciliation is made for the race, how can they be under the law and its claims. I know of no ground upon which God can remain just, and ever punish any of that race against whom he has no legal claim. I remark, also, that in the absence of violated law there is no condemnation. Whenever that violated law obtained satisfaction, justification naturally follows in its train. Consequently, when justification follows that satisfaction, the individual condemned by the law, is as free from condemnation, as though he had never been guilty. Now, you know this to be the case in common law. Let me illustrate this. The laws of our country say, that for penal offenses of a minor sort, the individual shall be fined in such sum, and imprisoned for such time. This is the penalty attached to the violation. Now, where a fine is paid, where the length of time has been served out, I ask you if the very law that put him in prison will not instantly become the defender of that individual? The man has made satisfaction to the law, consequently he stands justified, as much as he did before his violation, and he must remain so till he becomes again an offender. For this reason I can't believe the doctrine of universal atonement, advocated by my friend, for so surely as the condemnation has been removed by the death of CHRIST, and as surely as God remains just, man is saved, because there is no condemnation resting upon him. And if they are justified, heaven is their home.
Another objection I have here is, that if his theory be true, we have presented to our minds an idea that every impulse of nature revolts at -- revolts at the very thought of it. If this doctrine be true, then Jesus Christ died for CAIN as well as for ABEL; died for the rich man in hell as much as for Lazarus; as much for the wicked SODOMITE as for the Jews. Is there a lady or gentlemen here who can bring their minds, for a moment, to believe that Christ died for the sins of individuals then in hell? Where is the propriety of such, where the necessity of such, what good can possibly grow out of it? You know that the rich man was in hell; now, if that class of men and women were redeemed from the curse of the law; if that was the case, then out of hell they must be brought. If the law was satisfied, there is no claim to keep them there. Like the man in prison, when his service is rendered, when his time is out, or the law satisfied, then the same law that put him there brings him out; so in the case before us, if God's law was satisfied, out of hell they must come, or God fails to be just, and from his Divine character he can not be unjust. This he can never become. Now, these are some of the reasons why I can not receive the doctrine.
Another thing I can't persuade my mind, that our Heavenly Father, who is infinite in wisdom, should set his affections upon a portion of the race, that Jesus should die for that portion of the race, that God in his divine wisdom knew when that was done would not benefit them by it. There is not a father here, with all his love and tender affections for his children, that would suffer one of them to go through such a scene of agony and pain, when they knew it would never benefit those for whom they did suffer.
Consequently, I can not believe for a single moment that our Saviour, in his death and resurrection, designed to benefit a portion of the race, that never would be benefitted by that suffering, and that, so far as they were concerned, it was all in vain; all the suffering was lost. I, in connection with my brother beside me, rejoice that we are yet in a free country; we are here giving our different views upon this great doctrine, he affirming its truth, I denying it, for the reason you see, because I can't believe it. I will just say that I will make this admission, as on yesterday, to the full extent, that so far as the wisdom of God and his power is concerned, it is unlimited; he is omniscient, infinite in wisdom, God everywhere and over all, blessed for evermore; nothing lacking upon that ground. We are told, however, that if my views are true in regard to the will of God being accomplished, then every thought, every word, every action of the sons of men are in harmony with God's will. Now that is a very strange conclusion. I can understand the object in view by an argument of that sort. It is to endeavor to enforce upon the minds of this audience, that I have been advocating the doctrine of the predestination of all things. But I do not believe it, not a word of it. I, being no scholar, may not quite understand how to present my views upon the subject. I would simply say this, as the best I can do, that in my judgment there is a vast difference between the foreknowledge of God and the predestination of God. I might thus present the matter: God has a permissive will, and he has a positive will. By that permissive will, all the wickedness, sin and rebellion, that has ever cursed the earth has been allowed, but not decreed. He has a positive will, if he so desires, which can stop the sinner from cursing and swearing. Can not God stop the thief and murderer on his way to do his deeds? Now I do not wish to be understood, when I speak of the will of God being accomplished, as having any reference to this permissive will; for I want you to understand that all wicked actions of the sons and daughters of men come from a different source, from the wicked one. God has no hand in directing to evil, but he has a hand in directing the minds of men to do good actions. But individuals who act wickedly, act in an opposite spirit from the Lord Jesus Christ. I have special reference to God's positive will, what he designs to be accomplished. Now, will our brother tell us in what other light we are to understand the quotation made from Isaiah xlvi., 10, in which Jehovah says, "My counsels shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure," etc.
Now, will you be kind enough to tell me if God did not mean what he says. Now turn to Heb. viii., 10: "For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts, and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people."
Now I ask you, can you believe if there is a possibility of failure in that covenant being carried out? He is making a new covenant with them, and says, "I will be to them a God, and they shall be my people;" "their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more;" this is what I mean then by God's will, so far as it affects the final and eternal salvation of God's family. His will is fixed, his purpose is to reign, and it is in reference to that, in which he says my counsels shall stand. I know, my friends, that there is a confession of faith, that has this clause in it, "We believe that God foreordained and decreed all things whatsoever comes to pass." Now, I would have you understand that the Regular Baptists do not believe the doctrine, at least I can say I do not believe that God, in any sense of the term, is the author of evil, neither original nor personal evil. In reference to the violation of God's will, in the garden, by our first parents, I would have you understand, I believe God knows what Adam would do; but, at the same time, I would have you understand further, that I do not believe God influenced Adam to those acts, but he was influenced by the opposite spirit, the spirit of Anti-Christ. I trust I am understood upon that subject. We were next told that Adam's sin involved the race. I am delighted to hear him admit that (which is true) Adam's sin involved the race, involved them in what shall I say in condemnation (I do not think of any better term just now), that the race of men became condemned in consequence of the violation of God's will by the first man. This is the very gist of this discussion--of this question at least. If this is so, what is needed for salvation but his redemption from that transgression? And my friend has undertaken to prove that that was the mission of the Son of God. Not only to redeem them from that particular sin, but from all sin. Now, I differ very widely with him on these matters. The grounds in some measure have been presented, and I propose to show that if the theory of our friend is true, then God is changeable. There are passages of Holy Writ that will fully and satisfactorily explain this; and, be it remembered, that God does love his people, that he is the same today and tomorrow, of one mind, immutable and unchangeable. Consequently, what he loves today, he will love eternally. Now, if we can show from the scriptures the existence of some people that God did not love, and we have it in Matt. vii, 22, 23, "Many will say unto me, Lord we have prophesied in thy name, and in thy name done many wonderful works, and then will I profess unto them, I never knew you, depart from me, ye that work iniquity." Now I ask my friend if the Saviour did really die for these men? Did he die for a people he did not know? Does he not say he did not know them? If you admit the fact that the Saviour did not know these individuals, would that not be limiting his wisdom and his power? Yet there is a sense in which he did not know them. I will suppose that it means he did not know them in the covenant, that they did not belong to the covenant, for in that covenant God says, all shall know me from the least to the greatest. Yet here he says he did not know them. This, no doubt, will appear like a very hard doctrine to some of you. Many people here will, no doubt, be disposed to say, as some said in ancient times, "If these things are so, God is surely unjust." Oh no, no. Who art thou, Oh man, that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say unto him that formed it, "why hast thou made me thus?" (Time expired.)
STINSON'S LAST SPEECH.
ON THE FIRST PROPOSITION.
Ladies and Gentlemen:--I claim the privilege of beginning where I left off in my last speech. I was just beginning to quote from Dr. A. Clarke's "Commentary." After noticing what Clarke says, I will try to pay some attention to Brother Hume. (Let me remark, that Clarke, in this connection, has some Greek and Latin, and I shall have to pass by this; I will give what directly touches the point.)
Now, notice: "Now, leaving all particular creeds out of the question, and taking in the scope of the apostle's reasoning in this and the preceding chapter, is not the sense evidently this--through the disobedience of Adam, a sentence of condemnation to death, without any promise or hope of a resurrection passed upon all men, so by the obedience of Christ unto death, this one grand righteous act, the sentence, was so far reserved, that death shall not finally triumph, for all shall again be restored to life. Justice must have its due, and therefore all must die; the mercy of God in Christ Jesus shall have its due also, and, therefore all shall be put into a salvable state here, and the whole human race shall be raised to life at the great day. Thus, both justice and mercy are magnified, and neither is exalted at the expense of the other."
Clarke makes the above remarks, in connection with Romans v, 18.
My next proof text is in 2 Cor. v, 15: "If one died for all, then were all dead."
We will give you the doctor's explanation of this. "The first position the apostle takes for granted, viz: that Jesus Christ died for all mankind. This, no apostolic man or primitive Christian ever did doubt or could doubt. The second position he infers from the first, and justly too; for if all had not been guilty and consigned to eternal death, because of their sin, there could have been no need of his death; therefore as he must certainly die for all, then all were dead, and needed his sacrifice and the quickening power of his spirit."
Now, to 1 Timothy ii, 6: "Who gave himself a ransom for all," etc. I would here be glad to refer to Brother Hume's explanation of this on yesterday, but I will give you the explanation of the learned Dr. Clarke instead:
"He who by his death has redeemed all from the power and punishment of vice, from the slavery and misery of sin, as God is the God and Father of all, for there is but one God (ver. 5), and Jesus Christ the mediator of all, so he gave himself a ransom for all; for all that God made. Consequently, for every human soul, unless we could suppose that there are human souls of which God is not the creator, for the argument of the apostle is plainly this: 1. There is one God. 2. This God is the creator of all. 3. He has made a revelation of his kindness to all. 4. He will have all men to be saved and come unto the knowledge of the truth. And, 5. He has provided a mediator for all, who has given himself a ransom for all. As surely as God has created all men, so surely has Jesus Christ died for all men; this is a truth which the nature and revelation of God unequivocally proclaim."
Once more, turn to Hebrews ii, 9 (after alluding to the ancient custom of putting criminals to death, by giving them a cup of poison of which Socrates drank), the doctor says: ("He by the grace of God tasted death for every man," 9th ver.)
"The reference in that seems to point out the whole human race as being accused, tried, found guilty and condemned, each having his own poisoned cup to drink. And Jesus, the wonderful Jesus, takes the cup out of the hand of each, and cheerfully and with alacrity, drinks off the dregs; thus having drunk every man's poisoned cup, he tasted that death which they must have endured, had not their cup been drunk by another."
(Is not this the cup to which Christ refers in Matthew, when he says, "Oh, my father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me?)
Now, I would let the argument rest upon this, were it not that I might be accused of being partial to Dr. Clarke, as he was an Arminian and a Methodist, and would be supposed to favor the same view I take upon the subject.
I will now open the comprehensive commentary of Matthew Henry, a work strictly Calvinistic; he is too well known to admit of a doubt as to the correctness of his comment. Commenting on the 19th verse, which reads thus: "For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous." He says:
"It is observable how the apostle inculcates this truth, and repeats it again and again as a truth of very great consequence; here, observe the nature of Christ's righteousness, how it is brought in--it is by his obedience. The disobedience of the first Adam ruined us, the obedience of the second Adam saved us; his obedience to the law of mediation, which was, that he should fulfill all righteousness (and observe every law of God), and then make his soul an offering for sin, the fruit of it. There is a free gift upon all men, it is made and offered promiscuously to all. The salvation is common, the proposals general, the tender free, whoever will, may come and take of these waters of life."
Again, on 1 Timothy, ii, 1: "I exhort therefore that first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions and giving of thanks, be made for all men." On this, the commentary says:
"One reason why all men are to be prayed for is, because there is one God, and that God bears a goodwill to all mankind. Not that he has decreed the salvation of all, for then all would be saved, but he has a goodwill to the salvation of all and none perish but by their own fault. 1 Tim. xi, 4: "He will have all to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth," and to be saved in the way he has appointed, and not otherwise.
Now, once more, see Hebrew ii, 2: Matthew Henry says, "God had made him a little lower than the angels, that he might suffer and humble himself to death, and so by his sufferings make satisfaction, tasting death for every man, sensibly feeling and undergoing the bitter agonies of that shameful, painful and cursed death of the cross, hereby putting all mankind into a new state of trial."
So much, then, for the admission of a Calvinist. So much, then, for the company in which my definition is found. So much for Dr. Clarke, who is universally believed to be an honest commentator. You will discover that this sustains the view I have taken, and if these views are correct; they bear me out, and the doctrine I have attempted to prove is clearly maintained. If these scriptures mean what I understand them to mean, and what Dr. Clarke and Matthew Henry say they mean, their testimony will have some weight in establishing the views I have taken, and the interpretation I have given of the texts quoted, as proof of my position.
I proceed, then, to assume the fact, that the death of Christ made satisfaction to the Adamic law, and just here, swift as the moments are passing, I must correct an error that my beloved friend seems determined to persist in, in spite of anything I can say. It is known to the president and the audience, that I have carefully distinguished between the transgression of Adam and the transgression of the world. When I affirm that the death of Christ on the cross brought justification upon all men as it related to Adam's transgression, he still contends that that justification necessarily freed the world from all personal guilt. Now, I say that personal guilt was contracted by violating the law of God given to Moses, which law was very distinct from the one given to Adam. Then, on the same principle, the man that transgresses God's law, given out on Mount Sinai, becomes condemned for his own acts. The last part of my proposition claims a possible salvation for the sinner, who is condemned on account of sin--personal and intentional sin. Now, if my brother will not allow that, then I must accuse him of being hard hearted. I only claim in my proposition a possibility of sinners being saved, but he will not admit even a possibility. He seems determined to shut up the door of God's compassion, then bars a sinner out from the mercy and blood of the atonement, and from the prayers of the Church, and from the preaching of the gospel, all combined--denies to all a portion of the Holy Spirit. He can not allow that there is even a possibility for a part of the race being saved. He undertakes to combat my position, by explaining away my proof texts. I introduced two scriptures, to prove that God was no respecter of persons; he introduces a third one, to show in what sense God was no respecter of persons. Col. iii, 25: "But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done, and there is no respect of persons." That there is no respect of persons in the church.
Now, if Elder Hume had read my two texts, he could not have disposed of the apostle's teaching in that way. The apostle is arguing that God offered salvation to the gentiles as well as to the Jews; and that he is no respecter of persons in that respect, from the fact that he is willing all, in every nation, who believe in his name, shall be saved. This is what Paul is arguing; and the same thing is intended by Peter's confession. I have been thinking since the elder advanced that idea, that God might have convinced Peter a great deal easier, by telling him that he had no respect of persons in the church. If Peter did not know before the vision that God had no respect of persons in the church, it is taxing him with more ignorance than I am willing to admit he possessed. Then, there would have been no need of a revelation, the object of which was to convince Peter that he might go to the uncircumcised, to the gentiles, to the Scythians, barbarians, bond and free, that they were all alike, and that he had no respect of persons.
I will allude to Elder Hume's remarks on the term world. He tries to prove that I gave a wrong view of the term, from the fact that in Webster's Dictionary, the word has twenty-two different meanings, and of these but one meaning that justifies my quotation. By the by, he did not notice the punctuation, or he would have discovered there are two. But, if there was but one, has he proved that I did not interpret it correctly, according to that one? He has not. He said yesterday, in speaking of the world, he had like to have said "elect world." He might just as well have said it. In the course of this debate he will doubtless say so. When we quote in the language of scripture, that he is a propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only, but for the sins of the whole world (see Epistle of John), we are told that it did not mean the race, all of them. He discriminates. "In that sentence, `our sins,' I understand to mean the elect, the church." I don't think we will differ on this; but not for the elect, sins of the church, but for the sins of the whole world, which I say means the race of mankind. If he can explain this away, let him do it.
[Elder Stinson then quoted from John's Epistle v, 19; but in the middle of the quotation his time expired; the sentence being unfinished, it is not given in the report.--REPORTER.] (Time expired.)
HUME'S THIRD AND CLOSING SPEECH,
ON THE FIRST PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen:--From the information we have received from the President, I suppose that this short speech will close the discussion on the present proposition, and as I am aware that a great deal depends upon a correct understanding of the meaning of the terms "every man," I propose to refer you in the outset to a number of quotations that I have noted, directly upon the subject, to show you the uncertainty of attempting to found a system upon the meaning of any one or all of these terms together. Turn, if you please, to 2 Cor. vi, 10. Now, my dear friends, I desire that you examine these matters as for eternity, and I wish you to know the truth, that your minds may be properly informed upon the subject--"As sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, yet possessing all things." Now, there is all just as plain as can be; and is there an individual in this house who will say that the terms all things means all things. Do you believe it means anything that pertains to this world--did he mean gold and silver? You know he did not; yet he says, that as being poor, yet possessing all things. I suppose that the apostle meant all things pertaining to the salvation in Christ Jesus. Elder Stinson admits the truth of the whole of this. Now, see Ephesians vi, 21--"But that ye also may know my affairs, and how I do, Tychicus, a beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord, shall make known to you all things." Now, do you think he intended to make known to them all things, the price of produce, and the like? Is it not plainly manifest that he was to make known to him all things pertaining to a life of holiness? and yet we find the term all things used, when it does not mean all things. Look at Acts ii, 17, "And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my spirit upon all flesh." Give your own interpretation and see what you have got. I ask you, my dear brethren, to apply your own rule to that text, and what have you--"I will pour out of my spirit upon all flesh"--just admit your interpretation that all flesh means all flesh, and you will see where it will land you. Turn to Col. i, 23, "If ye continue ye in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven, whereof I Paul am made a minister." Not only is his definition of ALL, of every man, in the same light, but here we have it that the gospel was preached to "every creature." I again ask, is there a man here who believes it? Just give it the broad signification that he does, and I ask, can any man believe it? Why, then, claim that the term means what he says it does, when you see it will involve you in such difficulties? Turn to Isaiah xlv, 23, "I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, that unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear." Now, just give the gentleman's interpretation, and where do you land? Is it not evident as the shining sun at noonday, that the writer has reference to none but human beings; yet he says every knee shall bow, etc.; and you don't believe it. See Rev. xii, 9, "And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent called the devil and satan, which deceiveth the whole world." Not only the world, but the whole world. I ask, do you believe in the application of that text, as our brother has given it? Do you believe the world is all deceived by this individual--then there is none righteous, none that understand, for he says he deceiveth the world--has there ever been a time when he whole world was deceived by satan? I will leave it to you to say.
Again, Rev. xiii, 3: "And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death, and his deadly wound was healed, and all the world wandered after the beast." When was that? when did it occur? has there ever been a time that that was true? If the definition of my friend is true, that the world means the race, I repeat, has there ever been a time when all mankind were wandering after the devil? You see, my friends, it will not do to found a system upon these passages. 16th verse of the same chapter: "And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand or in their foreheads." Compare that with the language of Jehovah: "I have reserved unto myself seven thousand men that have not bowed the knee to the image of Baal." Yet, according to my friend, every creature and all men have received this mark. In Rev. xiv, 9: "And the third angel followed, saying with a loud voice, if any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead or in his hand, the same shall drink of the wine of this wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation," etc. Admit his definition and I prove the universal damnation of the race . . . In the other verse he says, "All men were called and received that mark." He tells us that upon all that receive it is poured out the wrath of God; consequently the race of men are damned; and this is worse than Universalism. To Rom. v, 18, I have simply to say what I said before, and my friend, Elder Stinson, has not attempted to deny that I told the truth. What was my explanation of that passage? It was this: that if, by the obedience of Jesus Christ, the free gift came upon all men unto justification, then all men were saved; for that is all (justification) that any man needs to be saved. Justification unto life is all I need, or any other sinner. I remarked to my brother that I did not admit it referred to the race, but I admitted it referred to the elect of God.
[Stinson.--That is the way to come it.]
Who are the elect? Why, all the family of believers. Is that the way to come it, too? All believers in Jesus Christ; every sinner upon God's earth that is born of Jesus Christ; I care not their name or color; every single believer on the Lord Jesus Christ belongs to the number. My view of the matter is this: God never intended to exhibit a plan that would result in no profit to them.
[Stinson.--Are any but the elect represented in the first Adam there?]
I believe they are. I understand his object in that question. It is to involve me in Parkerism and Calvinism. Understand me, then: I believe that all persons to whom justification unto life is given, believers in any church, whether Calvinists, general Baptists, or in any other church, are involved.
The gentleman told us that he did not wish the audience to go away with his wisdom, but wanted to impress them with the views of the wise and learned. I suppose no man has ever more deeply lamented the want of a common education than I have. True, in every age there have been thousands of wiser men than I, and there are tens of thousands of his character now; but while I make this admission, I am under no obligation to suffer any man on earth to keep my conscience and to point out to me what I shall believe upon the great doctrines of Christianity. Dr. Clarke was a wise and good man; so was Wesley. Yet might not these men be mistaken just as well as Elder Stinson, and more especially when you take into consideration this declaration: "The world by wisdom do not know God." Hence, my remark, that while I would greatly desire a better education, yet I am not willing to take for granted what other men say upon the great truths of Christianity. I tell you, my dear, dying audience, I want you to go away with the truths God has revealed in the Bible, and take what the Lord has revealed, and judge, as intelligent people, for yourselves.
With respect to my being a Calvinist, I have but little more than this to say: John Calvin was a great man, but I can't say he was a good man, as I sometimes have a doubt. He was a great man. So was Alexander Campbell. Perhaps a greater and more learned man has never graced the soil of America. But will he (Elder Stinson) say I will follow John Calvin? Does he say I will follow Mr. Wesley? You knew he will not. Then let me follow the same course. In some matters I differ with Calvin as much as my worthy brother. Elder Stinson believes some things that Calvin taught, but does he say he is a Calvinist on that account? He told us he wanted us to bear in mind that he made a distinction between the atonement made by Christ for actual sin in Adam and the sins of the race.
I wish you to bear in mind that if the Saviour on the cross did not bear the sins of the race, then, in heaven's name, tell me who did bear them? If he did not then and there bear the sins of all, how could he die for all? Mark the idea. Christ came to put away sin in the world. If the world has stood eighteen hundred years since, and in the end of that time sin is not put away, I ask you, did he do it? I maintain he did not do it. And if he did not do it, then are the race not condemned? For Jesus Christ dieth no more, and there remaineth no more sacrifice for sin? Will you consent to that explanation? I tell you, if your sins were not laid upon the Lord Jesus Christ then you are gone forever, for there is no name given under heaven whereby we must be saved; and from us poor, corrupt beings, God will never accept a sacrifice. Hence, if Jesus Christ did not bear all our sins, we are gone forever, lost, all lost! My brother has attempted in a single speech to deny the meaning of the atonement, but takes it for granted that it is an actual freeing from guilt. I would like to know what answer he will make in regard to the result of his doctrine of the atonement. Did I not tell you, if it was true, that Christ died as much for CAIN as for ABEL? for the rich man as for Lazarus? What answer was made to it? It was not even hinted at. And, consequently, we have the strange logical admission that our aged brother does not believe in his soul that Jesus shed his blood for the redemption of the people in hell, and yet that Jesus left them in hell; for we have no account of their ever coming out of there. I again repeat, if Jesus did die for them, then, in justice, they ought to be brought out of HELL, and at least set on equal footing with others. Yet here you see we have the admission that Jesus suffered for those in hell (for they are of the race), yet in all that suffering and agony he effected nothing for them. It was all in vain! all lost!
The gentleman inquired in reference to the meaning of the term world, as to whether I had been able to prove that his interpretation was incorrect? I will just, by way of retorting, ask, has he proved that it was correct, and that his interpretation was a true one? I ask every intelligent person here, if I have not introduced passages of scripture to convince you that it will not do to rely upon the meaning of his interpretation, in any single case? Such as, you have ALL wandered after the beast, and the whole world lieth in sin, the whole world being taxed under Caesar, etc. So you see it will not do to rely upon any of them, yet he relies upon two of them for his interpretation. I ask, if I have twenty against his two, on which side of the question does the strength lie? He tells you himself that there are but two of these twenty-two definitions that mean the race, and that twenty of them do not mean the race.
As I have a few minutes more, I will refer to Romans ix: "Nay, Oh man, who art thou that repliest against God; shall that thing formed say to him that formed it, why hast thou made me thus; hath not the potter power over the clay of the same lump to make one vessel to honor and another unto dishonor; what if God, willing to show his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much long suffering, the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction? And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had AFORE PREPARED unto glory."
Here you see is the whole system, here are vessels of wrath and vessels of mercy, and these vessels of mercy are those for whom Christ died. It is this family which is brought before you in the covenant, and of them he says: "And I will be to them a God; and they shall be to me a people; and they shall not teach every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying know the Lord; for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest." (Time expired.)
MR. STINSON'S SECOND PROPOSITION
That man is a moral agent, endowed with the volition of free will, capable of choosing or refusing eternal salvation as it is proposed in the gospel.
SECOND DAY'S DISCUSSION.
STINSON'S FIRST ADDRESS
ON THE SECOND PROPOSITION.
Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen: The proposition has been read and is our text for this afternoon. It supposes that eternal salvation is offered. That fact we have attempted to establish in our arguments in the evidence of the first proposition. How far we have succeeded will be for the public to determine. But supposing a humble effort in that direction has been somewhat successful, we now rise again, as before, burdened with the affirmative. That man is a moral agent, endowed with the volition of free will, capable of choosing or refusing eternal salvation, as it is proposed to him in the gospel. Lest there may be a difference of sentiment between Brother Hume and myself, on the subject of the understanding of the meaning of moral agency, free will, etc., I thought it best to settle the definition of the terms, as far as it could be settled, at the commencement of the debate upon this question. Webster defines the term agent as meaning an actor--one that exerts power, or has power to act for another--active power or calling. "Moral agent" is a term used theologically and has reference to the powers of the mind to act in a moral sense. I will now read the definition of will: "That faculty of the mind by which we determine either to do or forbear doing an action." In other words, to do or not to do. There is a point here I would call the attention of the audience to. The words, "moral agent" and "freedom of the will," are so nearly synonymous that had we been a little more careful, they need not both have been inserted in the proposition. Whatever point of scripture will establish the one, will also establish the other. This morning and yesterday we investigated the subject of man's redemption. The subject was introduced in all its bearings, with regard to the economy of redemption, as revealed in the Bible. We have now to investigate the character of man, to ascertain whether man possesses the power to act or refuse to act--to choose or not to choose. And I must say to this intelligent audience, that I can but feel sorry that my beloved brother, with the natural sagacity which I award to him, has found it in his heart to deny this proposition. I am astonished at the start, but he may remove that astonishment by arguments that are convincing; but this remains to be seen.
The first argument we shall offer upon this point will be founded on the organization of man. Now, permit me to remark, that the question between Elder Hume and myself is one of the utmost importance. There are but two sides to it. Either man is capable of acting or choosing, or else he is not. Now, I ask if he is not a moral agent, endowed with volition or free will, what is he? What kind of character will we give to him? The decision that my mind arrives at is this: either he is a moral agent, endowed, as the proposition says, with this power of choosing or refusing, or he is a mere machine. With this thought we approach the argument. We will first make a few remarks respecting man's organization. He is represented in the Bible as being composed of moral and physical powers; or, in other words, of a soul and body. Our investigation will be principally with regard to his moral powers; and here we will attempt to learn a lesson upon the dealings of God with men. When a man is perfectly acquainted with the capacity of anything about him, either animate or inanimate, he is apt to govern his conduct in that direction by the known ability possessed by the subject. Allowing this rule to be correct, let us endeavor to find the object of God's dealings with man after his creation, and see whether those dealings presuppose the existence of this moral power. First, when he was made and placed in the garden God calls him good. He was made in God's image--not physically, but the moral image of God was impressed upon him. Now, we undertake to say this was his moral power; for there is no likeness, on earth or in heaven, of God, that can be physical for he is unapproachable to look upon, being immortal. We will search for the image of God, then, in man so far as his governing powers are concerned. God made man for a governor, a ruler. Ruling power was given to him over all the animals and over all creatures on earth. In order for man to be a governor, God must have endowed him with the power of governing. This could not exist in the absence of the power to act or not to act, or the volition of the will, which is the same thing. But that God did recognize these qualities in man, will appear from the first declaration made to him in the giving of the law: "Of every tree of the garden thou mayst eat, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it, for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." The Apostle Paul says the law was holy, the commandment holy, just and good. A just commandment, delivered with a perfect knowledge of the powers of the subject of that commandment, could not require anything more in the commandment than he had power or ability to obey. This fact proves that God recognized in Adam the power to act or not to act--the power to do or not to do, which is what we claim in our proposition. Here we see man in his organization exhibited clearly, showing that he did possess this power. My opponent will doubtless endeavor to show that he did not. Then, I say, there can be no justice in the commandment. Having shown this at the earliest point, let us see whether he will deny or recognize him in possession of these powers. If not, we may succeed in convincing even Brother Hume that man possessed them at the start; yet he may attempt to show that he lost them by the fall. Let us follow the thread of the argument.
After the fall God had a conversation with Adam. In that conversation he does not speak of having lost any of the moral faculties of his mind, but of having sinned against God--of having made a wrong use of his power. But I will here pass from Adam and select a bad subject. We will bring you to the first bad man, Cain, the murderer. He is a true representative, having lost the knowledge and the enjoyment of God, was corrupt, base and fallen. We will venture to say that, so far as the fall is concerned, it is as prominent in him as in any character we could select. He had committed murder; and after that murder God talks to him; and this leads to the irresistible conclusion that God knew Cain could understand him. If Cain had never acted as a moral agent, in this interview he might have pleaded that his conduct was not from any consent of his will or moral power. But, mark, no such plea is made. After having conversed with him and pronounced judgment upon him for his crime, Cain complains of his hard lot, saying that it was more than he was able to bear. In reply God says to him, "If thou doest well shalt not thou be accepted." Mark, this is God's talk. Would God have said this in the absence of Cain's possessing ability to do well? Would God have used insincere language? Would God have said, "If thou doest well shalt not thou be accepted," yet knowing the impossibility of his doing well? No, Oh no! let us not put such a stain upon Jehovah's character. God made this declaration with a full knowledge that he was capable of doing well and obeying him. Otherwise, then sin lieth not at the door.
We will pass on and see, if we can, whether this audience possesses moral agency or freedom of the will. But I must acknowledge that in attempting to prove this it looks to me, from the standpoint I occupy, like trying to prove to you a fact which every one not only believes but positively knows. I take this position, that from a knowledge of this fact arises all our convictions of right and wrong. Virtue is attached to obedience and guilt to disobedience; but neither praise nor blame can justly attach to a being, in heaven or on earth, that is not in possession of these powers. Take, for instance, the man under conviction of having done wrong, and we are daily met by such men. It is true that man is frequently very sorry for having done a wrong act, or for neglecting to do that which was right. I appeal to the understanding of the audience before me, and ask, is not man subject to this feeling; does he not often weep in penitence and tears, for having done an act or for not doing what was commanded? He feels guilt, and justly, for having acted contrary to God's law. Guilt is fastened on his conscience and his soul.
Now, I say that this feeling never could enter a man's soul -- only upon the conviction that he might have acted otherwise. Convince a man that all his conduct and his actions are unavoidable, and is there a man under the canopy of heaven that could consistently be sorry for doing a thing he could not avoid doing? A man may be sorry for an accident, for an unavoidable act, but he never can feel criminally guilty for an act over which he had no control. The will, then, must act; the agency must exist; the consciousness of having a power to act must be felt; otherwise, his conscience would not, like a worm, gnaw the sinner under a sense of guilt. The pains of damnation or the flames of hell's torch could never produce suffering where there could have been no possibility of avoiding the act by which they were consigned there. Take the rich man's case. It is in point. He indirectly gives us the reason why he is there; for, in his prayer, he desires his five brothers to be warned, "peradventure they will repent;" which I understand to mean, if I had repented, I would not have been here. Does not the very character of this case teach us that all his anguish flowed from a consciousness that he might have avoided that place? I say this case is a positive proof, and it stands up as a beacon on the stormy coast of time--as a beacon to others to choose eternal life. We see he wanted his five brothers warned, that they might repent, and thereby escape the damnation of hell. No such desire would ever have existed in the heart of the poor hell-scorched sinner, if he had not been a moral agent--if he had not had moral power. Having introduced these points, I now appeal to this audience, and ask you, as ladies and gentlemen, would it be possible for you to feel condemnation for acts you could not avoid? And if you could avoid it, then you are moral free agents, possessing free will.
We will now introduce a few passages of scripture, which I think are in point. Some of them may refer to the freedom of the will; others to the moral agency of man; but I think they all bear upon one of the two. First, then, to Leviticus i, 3: "If his offering be a burnt-sacrifice of the herd, let him offer a male without blemish: he shall offer it of his own VOLUNTARY WILL, at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, before the Lord," etc. Here, under the law of Moses, we see it stated, and this is God's language, that he must offer it of his own voluntary will. Could he do this unless he had the endowment of free will? Your answer is no. Again, see Lev. xix, 5: "And if ye offer a sacrifice of peace offerings unto the Lord, ye shall offer it at your own will." Here the will is introduced, and the sacrifice is to be voluntary. Now, to be voluntary implies that if a man had not his will in that direction, such sacrifice would be rejected. Turn to I Cor. vii, 37: "Nevertheless, he that standeth steadfast in his heart, having no necessity, but hath power over his own will, and hath so decreed in his heart," etc. Power over his own will! Paul, did you think that man had power over his will? Did the immortal Paul recognize the existence of that power? If he did not, then his language does not convey that meaning. Again, Luke xii, 47: "And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes." How many stripes would he have been subject to if he had not known his lord's will? Again, see John's Gospel v, 40: "And ye will not come to me that ye might have life." Here we raise the supposition that life was offered, and we back it by the supposition that man had the power to will and come; but they would not come; they stayed away voluntarily; they failed to obtain life by the exercise of the freedom of the will. Rev. xxii, 17--one of the most familiar of passages--"And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." We take this as evidence that the words "whosoever will" are to be understood as meaning that all may exercise the judgment and power to come in that direction. The will is necessary in order to drink of the water of life. Now, to Joshua xxiv, 15: "And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve," etc. Here come up the last point in our proposition, almost asserting that he has the power of choosing. Would Joshua have used this language if they could not do it? Was Joshua mistaken in the character of the people, or were the people destitute of moral agency and freedom of the will? Yet Joshua tells them to choose this day whom they will serve. In the absence of the power of volition, no man ever did make a choice, neither can he. It is simply impossible for a man to choose in the absence of the volition of the will. Luke x, 47: "And Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her." Is this true? Jesus says it is true. He says Mary hath chosen that good part. Could she have done it in the absence of free will? Could she have done it in the absence of the ability to choose or reject between two propositions? You all would answer, no. Then the fact of Mary having exercised volition of the will, which she did do, I regard at least as being evidence that it exists in man. I will refer you to another text, which you find in Heb. xi, 25, where it is said of Moses, "Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the pleasure of sin for a season." This is perhaps a case more in point than any we have had before; for here are two propositions presented to the mind of Moses; the pleasures of sin, or the reproaches and affliction of the people of God. Moses is capable of examining and turning these points over and over, of looking at them, of deciding and of choosing the one and rejecting the other. None will question this fact as it regards Moses; and with regard to Mary, none will question that; so with regard to the people of Israel, that Joshua told to choose whom they will serve.
But we will quote another text, without giving chapter and verse. I allude now to the language used, if I mistake not, in connection with Elijah, the prophet: "Why halt ye between two opinions: if the Lord be God, serve him; if Baal, serve him." Here you discover the facts prominently set forth, that the speaker seems to be astonished that they hesitated between two opinions, when they could reject one and choose the other. We are contending now for the volition of the will, the power of choosing. The same truth shines in the dealings of God with the human race, on, on, down the stream of time, and prominently shows itself in the day of judgment. I will quote another text. God says: "He that believeth shall be saved; he that believeth not shall be damned." Now, the question arises whether there is the power anywhere in man to believe when the evidence is presented before his eyes. This is a question upon which hang weighty and eternal things. I do not like to affirm in my own language, but I have a text which I consider pertinent: "With the heart, man believeth unto righteousness; with the mouth, confession is made unto salvation." Does man believe with the heart? Can he believe with his heart? If he does or can, then he has the power and will to believe. This view brings his condemnation upon him justly, for not doing what he could have done, and for doing that which he might have avoided. Upon this great principle of justice, God deals with man in all his commandments, in all his judgments. In punishing him, he punishes him for doing what he could have avoided, and for not doing what he might have done. He rewards him for doing what he was commanded to do. And the very fact of his doing so shows plainly that man has the volition of free will, and the truth of the proposition is sustained; and man never could have obeyed if he did not possess the power to obey. I repeat, could he obey without power to obey? Could he have been condemned for unbelief when he had no power to believe? Your answer must be no. (Time expired.)
HUME'S FIRST REPLY
ON THE SECOND PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen:--In rising, I would ask the president to read the proposition. [After the proposition had been read, Mr. Hume continued.]
I have arisen before you, on this occasion, to take the negative of the proposition, which has just been affirmed in your hearing. And in doing so, I think, that I feel deeply interested in your having a correct understanding of the subject matter thus presented. For about the first forty minutes, of my friend's speech, he traveled but very little out of my view of the matter he was discussing. There is but very little in that which is objectionable. But the reason why I desired the reading of the proposition, was from the consideration of this fact: you will find presented there the idea that of man's possessing the power of "choosing or refusing eternal salvation." That is the matter you are to notice. But as it respects the moral power of man, as it respects their intellectual abilities or faculties, I, perhaps, think as highly of them as my friend, Elder Stinson. Indeed, the wisdom of men, as developed in the arts and science of the age, is very deep and profound, and deserves a great deal of respect. And it seems from the evidence before us, that it is hardly possible for us to conceive the height of wisdom men may finally reach, and what may be accomplished by them. The elder might have saved himself that forty minutes' labor, if he had just turned round and asked me if I admitted it. But did he, in any of the inferences, present the argument or the text, that said that this volition embraced eternal life? Is there a single item there, was there a single text introduced to prove that men possessed the power to choose or refuse "eternal salvation." That is what I deny. Not the power or ability to choose in moral matters, for I believe they possess the power; they do not only possess the power, but it is their duty to exercise it. Upon this subject I have had many arguments, and I have maintained, during my little experience, that all men, everywhere in gospel lands, have the power to live a more honest and upright life, and ought to do it. Consequently no man need come to me with an apology for his bad conduct and say, he could not help doing so, for I don't believe him. The man that is in the habit of getting intoxicated, and cursing and swearing, or that is in the habit of any immorality, no matter what, possesses the power to lay the habit aside; does not only possess the power, but if he has the respect he ought to have for himself, will do it; not because he is expected by doing so to work his passage to heaven. No, verily, but that he might render himself and family more respectable and happy, and set them an example that would be worthy the imitation of all who knew him. But let me ask you, is that religion? Is that the first step toward Christianity? I maintain that every man ought to be a moral man--but I make a further remark, that is this: that every truly pious man is a moral man, but that every truly moral man is not truly a pious man.
What argument has he introduced to show that these individuals can choose or refuse eternal salvation? That is the proposition. If he has introduced one, I will try to find it; however, I have no doubt in the least, but that if it were possible for us to get the voices of the masses, that he could prove by nine out every ten, that he was right; yes, I am well aware that I am largely in the minority. But I remember another thing, that there was a time when the King of king and Lord of lords had but twelve disciples among the whole race, and they were very unpopular. I recollect a time like that. Consequently their being in the minority is no argument that they were wrong. We further remark, that from that day the people of God, the world over, have been in the minority, under all circumstances. But I have this consolation in the language of my Saviour: "Fear not little flock, for it is your father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom;" not sell it to you for work. And the exhortation is to fear not, for it is his pleasure to give you the kingdom, etc. Consequently I do not feel discouraged, because I am in minority; but as to whether we are in the minority or not is not the question. But does the Bible teach that the race of men possess the power of choosing or refusing eternal salvation, as proposed in the gospel? I, for my part, deny their having any such power; and in view of my extreme ignorance or want of human sympathy on the subject, my dear old friend is remarkably sorry for Mr. Hume. I would just say, I thank him for his sympathy, but don't believe his doctrine.
Man is not now what he once was. He was at one time, good; and it is also true that he was in the image of his Creator. I know not by what authority our aged father (Stinson) says he was not in the image of God physically; suffice it to say, he was in the image of God--made after his likeness. The apostle has declared that he is the express image of his person. Allow me, however, to suggest an idea as to the likeness that the first man possessed to the character of God. In giving this idea, I do not give it as gospel truth, nor even as regular Baptist doctrine. But, as there was a Trinity in the Godhead, so, in like manner, there is a trinity in manhood. In the Godhead, there was the Father, Son and Holy Ghost. In manhood, there is the Man, the Bride and the Posterity. Allow me to present this idea, so far as man sustains it in his character to his Maker. I have an objection to my brother, that he (man) sustains it in a moral point of view--that in coming out of the hand of God, he was free from sin. How is he now, and has been for ages? Doubtless he is in a very different situation to what he was then. Then he was good, and somehow he has become bad; and our friend told us, in a former speech, that Adam's sin ran through all the race. Now, if this be a fact, mankind, in consequence of the sin of the first man, have become contaminated; then, I ask, is not his mind, his judgment restrained and darkened, and does not the Bible declare, not only these facts, but that he is dead in trespasses and sins? If this be so, you see man is not now what he was then; consequently, what he then possessed the power to do, he does not now possess the power to do. And here, I will remark, that God never, at any time, nor under any circumstances, required anything of any man which they or he were unable to comply with. Then, when God made this requisition on man, he was perfectly able to obey God. If we inquire why he did not, we learn that the wife said to him, "Thou gavest unto me, and I did eat. [We men often love to fix the blame on our wives, if we can.] I eat; having disobeyed God, I fell under the curse of his law." What is their condition? The Bible tells us that, for the first time, they discovered they were naked. "Now they see their nakedness," says the Bible. What is the result? They are a good deal like our old father here; they go to work right away to fix up garments--they made themselves aprons of fig leaves: now, I have been told that the fig leaf has about as little substance in it as anything--it crumbles and dries away as soon as it is made; and just so with our brother's works. Well, what did Jehovah do? Did he tell them to go to work, and make garments? No; but Jehovah himself took skins, and made garments for them. Did he tell them to put them on? No; but he both made the coats, and put them on them. If this proves anything, it proves that this is a figure of the righteousness of Jesus Christ; and if a sinner wears this coat, Jehovah must put it on him. Thus, you see, man is not now what he once was.
Our friend labored very hard to make you believe that God loved Cain--had some portion of affection for him. If you will turn to I John, iii, 8: "He that committeth sin is of the devil, for the devil sinneth from the beginning," etc.; now, verse 12: "Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother." What, then, is the meaning of the term "of?" here it means belonging to, or descending from. Now, says John, this man was "of that wicked one." But Elder Stinson told us, that every man did not only believe, but did most assuredly KNOW that he possessed the ability to obey God.
I now ask your attention to Romans iii, 10 to 18 inclusive: "As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: there is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulchre: with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: their feet are swift to shed blood: destruction and misery are in their ways: and the way of peace they have not known: there is no fear of God before their eyes."
Now, I ask, can you believe what the elder said a little while ago, that you not only believe, but positively know that you have the power to obey? Has not the apostle examined man from his head to the sole of his foot, and does he not tell you that" there is none that doeth good, no, not one?" The reason is, because there is no fear of God before their eyes. Read and examine for yourself.
The gentleman seemed to think that the opposite of his views were our views, that we believed that bad conduct was unavoidable, and that therefore man was not responsible. I will acknowledge that I know but very little, but I am unwilling for Elder Stinson to tell me what the Regular Baptists believe.
[STINSON--I did not say you believed it.]
I will remark, therefore, as I did before, that we do believe men possess the moral power to perform moral acts, and are in duty bound to perform them; but my remark was, that is not religion.
In regard to the quotation from Leviticus iii, 19. This address was made to ancient Israel; they were God's national people, requiring an offering or sacrifice, by which their sins, as a nation, were to be atoned for. If my friend will show such a declaration to the gentile nations of the earth, if he can find the offer of eternal life in connection with such declaration, I will submit. I believe that every man on earth can obey the will of God upon condition that he first feels it a duty, and that he will be rewarded or punished for obeying or disobeying; for you know when you do your duty, you realize peace of mind in regard to temporal things. So it was with ancient Israel. Their enjoyment of peace as a nation depended upon the performance of these conditions; but in regard to our future and eternal salvation, that is a fixed fact in the law of God.
With reference to the quotation from Luke: "And that servant which knew his Lord's will and prepared not himself," etc.
Is that man any other but a servant of God? NO. Consequently this passage does not refer to anybody but the servants of God. You that know and do not do it, etc., can not be made to apply anywhere else.
In regard to the will, every man possesses a will in moral matters, to do or not to do. The Saviour says (and this brings to mind an admission I made, that they can not, because they will not). "Ye will not come unto me." Why did they not come? Simply, because they have not got the will. I ask you if they have to become possessed of one, how will they get it? In God's name, I ask, will they ever come till they get a will, and if they have not got a will now, how and from whom will they get it? There is not an individual here but will acknowledge this fact, that if I get a will I have not had, I must get it as a gift from Jehovah, for I have no power to change my soul or will, any more than to change my physical organization--neither have you. Then, I take it, the will to perform good (religious) actions, must come from God, for in nature we have not known God, being dead in trespasses and sin, being blindfolded and without the spirit of divine love. But of all his quotations, I was most perfectly astounded to hear the one from Joshua xxiv, 15.
If I fail to make every lady and gentlemen believe as I do on this passage, it will be because of unlimited prejudice against me. I now remark that this is another expression delivered by Jehovah to Israel and not to the gentile nations. God never made such an address to them. I ask, why did he not quote the whole passage? Just read it; it will explain itself. That verse begins in this way: "If it seem evil to you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve" (whether God or the devil. No, sir. Well, then, how is it?), "whether the gods which your fathers served, that were on the other side of the flood; or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell; but as for me and my house we will serve the Lord." There is not a single sentence here about serving the God of the Bible; hence, if it seem evil to you, then choose between these two systems of idolatry, whether the gods your father served, or the gods of the Amorites. The idea is this, if you do not serve the God of the Bible, you may just as well serve the one as the other. Moses, he said, chose rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season. Why did Moses make that choice? Because he was already a servant of the most high God; and every true servant of God on earth chooses rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season. That is the reason why they submit to be mocked at, that is the reason why they stand identified with the people of God, whose sorrows they make their sorrows, whose joys are their joys, whose hopes are their hopes, and if they die, we die with them; hence, "I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness."
The other quotation referred to by our brother, in the historical account of the prophet Elijah, was a special address made to the children of Israel, and not to the gentile nations, under any circumstances: "Why halt ye between two opinions?" Show me that it is a disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ that is standing outside of the house of God, and I will say to him, why halt ye between two opinions; why not come into the Messiah's army while it is marching on its way to the world of everlasting glory? Why halt ye between merchandise and the cross of Christ; why halt ye between the gods of silver and the cross of Christ? Lay all these things down and come to the help of the Lord against the mighty. Here is where the passage belongs.
I undertake to prove (but first let me remark, that well do I know that as soon as I have made my remarks, that the heart of every ungodly person here will rise up in anger against me, because I take the ground, that there is a family brought to view in the bible that the eternal God never did love, and never intended to save).
[A voice in the audience--that is a bitter pill.]
I know it; nevertheless, the Holy Ghost has given his word for its truth, and let me die in its defense. Now, for the proof. Turn to Gen. xvi, 11, 12: "And the angel of the Lord said unto her, thou art with child and shalt bear a son, and shall call his name Ishmael, because the Lord hath heard thy affliction; and he will be a wild man, his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him, and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren." Is that one of God's family? was that one of those God loved? So well.
Is that one of the individuals Christ died for? Mark the language--his hand shall be against every man, and every man's hand shall be against him. Now turn to Gen. xxv, and read the 32nd, 33d and 34th verses: "And Esau said, behold, I am at the point to die; and what profit shall this birthright do to me? And Jacob said, swear to me this day; and he sware unto him: and he sold his birthright unto Jacob. Then Jacob gave unto Esau bread and pottage of lentils; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright." We intend to trace them again. Deut. xxxii, 5: "They have corrupted themselves: their spot is not the spot of his children; they are a perverse and crooked generation." Now read the 24th and 25th verses of the same: "They shall be burnt with hunger, and devoured with burning heat, and with bitter destruction: I will send the teeth of beasts upon them, with the poison of serpents of the dust. The sword without, and terror within, shall destroy both the young man and the virgin, the suckling also with the man of gray hairs."
If you will find such a text as that in regard to the children of Israel, God's chosen people, I will set down and acknowledge that I am completely whipped in this discussion. Now to Isaiah xiv, 19, 20: "But thou art cast out of thy grave like an abominable branch, and as the remnant of those that are slain, thrust through with a sword, that go down to the pit as a carcass trodden under foot. Thou shalt not be joined with them in burial, because thou has destroyed thy land and slain thy people; the seed of evil doers shall never be renowned." Again, Isaiah lvii, 3, 4: "But draw near hither, ye sons of the sorceress, the seed of the adulterer and the whore. Against whom do ye sport yourselves? against whom make ye a wide mouth and draw out the tongue? Are ye not the children of transgression, a seed of falsehood?" If any man will show me a text where Jehovah's family are termed the seed of falsehood, I will give up. It is precisely the reverse, for Jehovah declares by the prophet; he says they are my "people--children that will not lie." And he is their saviour. But that is not the family we have just been reading about. Again, turn to Malachi i, 2-4: "And I loved you, saith the Lord; yet ye say, wherein hast thou loved us? Was not Esau Jacob's brother, saith the Lord, yet I loved Jacob and I hated Esau, and laid his mountains and his heritage waste for the dragon of the wilderness. Whereas, Edom saith, we are impoverished, but we will return and rebuild the desolate places. Thus saith the Lord of hosts, they shall build, but I will throw down, and they shall call them the border of wickedness, and the people against whom the Lord hath indignation forever." Are these the people of Israel, or are they a people that can be saved by the exercise of the volition of the will, when Jehovah tells you here that he hates Esau, that they are a people against whom he has indignation forever? I know the carnal mind of man is much opposed to this view; but if God has indignation forever against this people, tell me when that indignation will cease; and if God hates them, tell me, will he love them? Look now to Matt. xxiii, 29-36: "Woe unto you scribes and pharisees, hypocrites, because ye build the tombs of the prophets and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous, and say, if we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. Wherefore be ye witness unto yourselves that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets; fill ye up then the measure of your fathers: ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell? Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets and wise men and scribes, and some of them ye shall kill and crucify, and some of them ye shall scourge in your synagogues and persecute them from city to city, that upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zaccharias, son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar; verily I say unto you all these things shall come upon this generation." I repeat, you can not show me a single text where Jehovah has at any time used such language to his people. But here is a family which he declares to be a generation of vipers; as much as to say, some of you can not escape the damnation of hell. He says, how can they escape it? I suppose my brother here can find out by the exercise of his will. In his reply I want him to notice all these passages; that is the reason I introduce them now. 2 Thess. ii, 10, 11, 12: "And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish, because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie; that they all might be damned who believe not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness." Here are individuals who present us with the idea that they have the curse of God resting on them, while I have shown you a family directly opposite. I ask you how it is that this family is not chosen like the other? The apostles says: "God has chosen you;" and they were bound to give thanks to God for it, too.
My friends, I have read and heard a great deal said in my life, about sharing in the glories of the millennium, the time when all nations shall know the Lord, not only so, but when all individuals shall know him. Some tell us that the time is just at hand; but what does the Bible say: Evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. Jehovah says, that in the course of events, evil seducers shall wax worse and worse. I ask, then, where is your hope? Do times grow better? I might compare the state of things now with those of forty years ago, and ask you to tell me if we are on the onward march? I might ask you the question, if things have not got worse and worse? If this is so, if men are waxing worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived; I repeat, man is not now as he once was. Turn to Heb. iii, 9-11: "When your father tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years; wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said they do always err in their heart, and they have not known my ways; so I swear, in my wrath, they shall not enter into my rest." This is a text which, if the people will believe it, I need not quote another word to upset the whole of my friend's theory on this proposition; that is not the worst of it. I care not what may be his ingenuity, he never can get around it; there is no dodging the question; it is too plain; listen to it: when your fathers tempted me, and proved me, and saw my works forty years, wherefore I was grieved with that generation (what generation was this? why it was the generation of falsehood that had always erred in their hearts); well, what more so, I swear they shall not enter into my rest. I wonder if he will try to dodge that. Here is this generation again, to whom God has indignation forever, they are the representatives of Ishmael and Esau--hard as it may seem, it is true.
[Here a gentleman in the audience remarked that he, Hume, would sugar-coat it over tomorrow; to this Mr. Hume remarked that sugar-coating was very good in its place, it was fitted for children, but would not do for older people.]
Again, see I Peter ii, 8: "And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient, where unto also they were appointed." Mark the language. I shall not attempt to comment upon this, but give you the authority of God. He says they were appointed to that disobedience. You fix it up, and sugar-coat it as thick as you like; but, I think, it will have to be pretty thick if it is not licked off again. 2 Peter ii, 12-14: "But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; and shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that counted it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings, while they feast with you. Having eyes full of adultery, and that can not cease from sin, beguiling unstable souls: a heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children."
I ask again, if that people belong to God's family? We have here men, not only as brute beasts, but they shall be made to be taken and destroyed, and shall perish in their own corruption. (Time expired.)
STINSON'S SECOND SPEECH,
ON THE SECOND PROPOSITION.
After the President had read the proposition, "That man is a moral agent, capable of choosing or refusing eternal salvation, as is proposed in the gospel," Mr. Stinson said:
Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen:--I rise before you, this morning, to proceed with the investigation of this subject, and I propose commencing where we quit yesterday. You remember I made a speech of one hour's length, explaining my views of the matter, and that my worthy opponent followed me in a speech of the same length. This morning I intend to notice in his speech what I regard as being relevant, as far as I am able; and then introduce what evidence may occur to my mind, in support of the proposition. I shall have to do this in half an hour, and you will pardon me for attempting to crowd in this space, matters that might demand a more minute investigation. Elder Hume commenced his reply, by admitting the point of argument I had made in the first forty minutes of my discourse. The report will show what points they were. If I understood him correctly, however, he admitted all that had reference to agency, or freedom of the will, but objected to that part of it which gave man the power of choosing eternal life. This being so, the discussion of today becomes limited. I rise with the satisfaction of having established two prominent points in my affirmative. Elder Hume told us that he fully indorsed the moral powers of man. He explains himself, by telling us that he has the power to conform to morality, to be a moral man, a good man, morally speaking. He makes another declaration with regard to God's dealings with man, as a moral agent. That God never did require from man an impossibility, or, in other words, that man was capable always of obeying or of doing what God commanded him to do, at the time the commandment was given. Is not that it, Brother Hume. [Hume--That's it.]
Bear in mind this point; and here I would remark, without indulging in any levity, knowing the firmness of my opponent, as I do, I think I have come nearer to converting him than I expected at the start.
After his allusion to the first forty minutes of my address, he then notices some of my quotations. A part of them he finds in the Old Testament; and forsooth, because in the Old Testament, though the language is positive on the doctrine of choosing, he tells us that from the fact of their being connected with the Jewish dispensation, they are no evidence, and disposes of them all. The job is easily done; to declare evidence is out of place, because quoted as having taken place under the old dispensation. Elder Hume has been very particular to contend, during this discussion, that God is unchangeable; that what he loves once, he loves forever, what he hates once he hates forever; that he is always of one mind. Apply this rule to my quotation--did God understand the power of choosing, under the old dispensation, as different from the power of choosing under the new? I ask how much more power would be necessary to enable a man to choose, under the new dispensation than under the old? For the life of me, I can not see this point. If it should be admitted to be different, I should conclude that it required greater power to make a correct choice under the old man than under the new dispensation--on account of the intricacy and darkness of the old one. The new one professes to bring light, to make things plainer, and that I may not mislead you on this point, I will say that Paul says, that there is a vail yet over us when we read Moses; but that, that vail or darkness is taken away in Christ, under the new dispensation; so, I contend, that my quotations were not out of place, on account of being under the old dispensation.
He told us that if we could show where Cain had chosen eternal life, under the gospel dispensation, he would surrender the point. Well, we will try to show that. He then passes all my proofs, having, as he supposes, successfully set them all aside; he then tries to put us on an entirely new subject, by taking our minds off the one in question, and telling us he knows he will displease the audience. He knows the majority will be against him. And he introduces more than once the fact that he has always consoled himself with the reflection that the good and the righteous have always been in the minority. I do not think he has been quite definite enough in this matter; whether he means that he is right, because Christianity has always been in the minority, or whether he believes his denomination are right, because they are in the minority; does he mean all Christians? [Hume--That is my view.] He explains himself, and I am glad of it; how, then, could he expect to displease the audience--only the dark and unenlightened upon the subject. But to the subject: he tells us that there is a people that God never did, and never can love; that he hated them, and that Christ never died for them, and that they can never be saved. What that had to do with the proposition, I could not see. He commenced by noticing Ishmael, as the head of one of these God-hated nations; and Esau, as the head of another. I do not remember that he introduced any others, as the heads of nations, of this kind, but of the descendants of these two, he declares that God hated them, and that Christ never died for them, and that they never can be saved. Mark well, that he takes them up as nations, which term includes all their posterity.
[Here a sentence is left out. It was accidentally blotted by the inkstand falling. It was not of great importance in the argument; but referred to God sending his angel to Rebecca and to Agar to comfort them. Its omission will not detract much from the argument.--Rep.]
If he has taken a correct view of the matter, here are two nations hated of God, denied all privileges, damned forever. Did Rachel weep for her children under the bloody edict of Herod; then must we suppose that the mothers of Enoch and Ishmael had no similar sympathy? Look at the matter--the infant, the babe that breathes but two minutes, or two days, after it is born into the world, dies, and where does it go? Why, every infant, that died in infancy, of the nations of Ishmael and Esau, are hopelessly damned world without end. "Oh tell it not in Gath, publish it not in Askelon." I will not appeal to the sympathies of the audience, but proceed.
He introduced a text from the prophecy of Isaiah xiv, 19, to prove the existence of this God-hated nation. This morning I have examined his text, and I discover that the people spoken of were the Jews, in their wicked state; with one exception, which alludes to the king of Babylon. He then goes into the New Testament, and finds the same generation of vipers among the scribes and pharisees; Jesus saith unto them, "Ye generation of vipers, ye serpents, how can you escape the damnation of hell?" Now, mark, were these scribes and pharisees Ishmaelites--were they the sons of Esau? No, my brother, they were part of God's elect; they were part of God's chosen people; they were Jesus Christ's own, that he came to, but they received him not. So much for that quotation. The language of John the Baptist is precisely similar; he says, what need ye say we have Abraham to our father, which shows that they were the seed of Abraham, the elect of God. He then brings us to Peter, where he also finds this generation of vipers. In Heb. iii, 10, wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, they do always err in their heart, and they have not known my ways. Now, that generation, he would have us believe, was the generation of vipers that God hated. Paul quotes from the Old Testament, wherefore I was grieved with that generation, for they do always err in their heart, and have not known my ways. [Hume-read the next verse.] "And I swear in my wrath they shall not enter into my rest." In the 17th verse we will get a little light on it; it reads, "But with whom was he grieved forty years? was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcasses fell in the wilderness?" 18th verse, "And to whom sware he that they should not enter into his rest, but to them that believe not;" (and now the 19th), "so we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief."
So much, then, for this God-hated generation. Again, with reference to the passage, 2 Peter ii, 12, 13, 14, "But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not, and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; and shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the daytime; spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings, while they feast with you; having eyes full of adultery and that can not cease from sin, beguiling unstable souls; a heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children." I will also read the next verse, "which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray." Mark, they had forsaken the right way, which shows that they had once been in the right way, and therefore they could not be the generation of vipers, as he presented them. The 21st verse says, "For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them." Bear my reply in mind, and see to what man may resort in argument, against a plain proposition. (Time expired.)
HUME'S SECOND REPLY,
ON THE SECOND PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen:--From necessity I shall be compelled to be very slow, and very low in my voice on this occasion; it will require close attention to understand me distinctly, and this I desire the audience should do. May the spirit of Him that said let there be light, and there was light, guide my tongue in this discussion. The first thing I have noted in the last speech was a simple declaration of Elder Stinson, that he had fully sustained the two propositions; this is a matter that I do not intend to contradict. I do not intend to deny it, but will leave this important matter with the people, and let them determine whether that has been done--yea or nay. He then tells us, in the next place, that he had come nearer converting us, than he had expected in the outset of this discussion. This somewhat astonishes me, for I have not been able to see the evidence upon which a good conversion might be founded; consequently I still remain a heretic, according to my worthy brother, and perhaps shall remain so. Of one thing I am very certain, that if a denial of the statements he is advocating constitutes heresy, I am one. He then told us, if I understood him correctly, that I was opposed to the Old Testament scriptures being introduced in the discussion. I will say that if I did object, I was wrong, for I did not design doing so. I think I have not forgotten my position; it was this, that these declarations were made to God's national Israel, and their spiritual application was to be found in the spiritual family of God. That is my recollection of the matter; whether they were my remarks or not, they are the sentiments I believe. Consequently, not requiring national Israel to make choice properly of spiritual things which belong to the church of God, the members of the church individually have a right to choose, and upon condition of choosing the good and right way, as Christians can do, they realize the blessings of God's promises; and upon condition of refusing, they suffer his chastisements. Apply the Old Testament scriptures in this way, and I receive them as belonging strictly to, and as applying to the family of God. But our friend tells us he can't see this point. Perhaps a little eye salve of divine grace might help him; for my part I can see no difference in this point; I understand it just as I presented it.
He then makes the impression, and I will not now say that it was incorrect, that in the presentation of some of the quotations made in my last speech, yesterday, that I presented the idea that all the lineal descendants of Esau belong to the God-hated family. Now, I have no recollection of making any such statement. If I did, I was wrong; for I do not believe it. I simply meant to present this idea, that Cain, Ishmael, Esau and Judas were representative characters in their nature and standing, and that they represented that family recognized as anti-Christ, that have grown old in wickedness against God, and who have rejected the counsels of God. That is what I mean; not that the lineal descendants of either, as a nation, each and all in their individual being are hated of God; for I do not believe that doctrine.
It is certainly true that the apostle does tell us that there are vessels of wrath fitted to destruction, against whom God hath indignation forever; and this text my friend has not noticed. These are the people that are figuratively represented by the characters above-named, called Babylon, the mother of harlots, in whom is found the blood of the saints of God; but not the children of every individual descended from Esau or Ishmael, nor even the children of these individuals. I hope, therefore, I shall be understood upon that point. We have arrived at a point which I have anticipated from the commencement of this discussion. This makes the sixth discussion I have had without ever having challenged any man; and in each of these discussions I have had the same point presented to my mind, and that is this: If the theory we advocate be true, it necessarily follows that all that die in infancy of these nations are irrevocably damned. Now, I have never employed Brother Stinson to be my expositor. I as firmly believe, as I believe that God lives, or that you are here, that all the human race that die in infancy go happy; and any person who has heard me preach, knows that is my faith. However, he tells us not to publish it in Gath, nor proclaim it in Askelon, that such sentiments are advocated. God forbid that I should advocate them! and I have never known a man that did advocate them.
I might, if it was either gentlemanly or Christian-like, present objections on the other side that would be quite as fearful as those presented here; but I will not but hope that the congregation believes me honest, when I state that I do not believe the doctrine. We are told that the Jews were God's elect people, and it was the Jews that the Saviour called the generation of vipers and serpents, and whom he asked, How can you escape the damnation of hell?
Now, in a national point of view, the Jews were God's peculiar people; they were God's chosen people; they were God's elect nationality. Jesus, the Divine Saviour, was a Jew; consequently, the Jews were his people. Now, I ask this congregation, in all candor, can you persuade yourselves to believe that the Divine Saviour thus addressed his brother Jews declaring them to be a generation of vipers--promiscuously calling them vipers and serpents--telling them they could not escape the damnation of hell? Now, let it be remembered that we have a text of scripture like this: "They are not all Israel which are of Israel; neither because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all the children of Abraham."
Now, if we look at this matter as the Bible presents it, we have this fact brought before the mind, that the elect of God nationally includes some who are not God's elect individually; for the apostle says, "They are not all Israel which are of Israel." Hence, it is to this portion that the language of the Bible refers: "He came to his own, and his own received him not." Now, did they all reject him? Did the Jewish nation all reject him? Surely not. So we have the language, he came to his own, and they rejected him. If I understand this matter, it means that the great mass of the Jewish nation rejected the Son of God. Why? Because they had not the spiritual understanding of his divine mission; consequently, could not, for the want of a spiritual understanding, realize the truth of the prophecy that preceded Christ's coming; therefore they rejected him, while others received him. Now, that is the generation of vipers that the Saviour refers to here; but did not embrace that portion who believed on him.
Now, I will make this remark, lest the people think more hardly of us than they ought, that I as firmly believe as Elder Stinson does, that the reason why sinners are damned is in consequence of their unbelief. Then the question comes up. Why did not they believe? We are now getting very close to the point at issue. If you will turn to St. John xii, 39,40, you will find this language: "Therefore they could not believe, because that Esias said again, He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them." Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in Askelon, that God has said some people can not believe. That is not the worst feature of this text, speaking after the manner of men; for he that says they can not believe, has hardened their hearts, has blinded their eyes, lest they should see and understand.
But, says that dear sympathetic friend, Mr. Hume, that will never do; if that is true, God is unjust. Nay, what am I? poor unworthy mortal as I am, should I challenge the great Jehovah of the earth and bring him to account for his conduct? Dare I do it? Let me die first. I take his word as I find it, and whether your are willing to believe it or not, the day and time is coming when we shall be willing to confess that this is God's truth, and that these things are so. Just explain them away, if you can; here is the reason why some people do not believe--because they can not. As to why they can not, that is not my business. I have never attempted to arraign Jehovah, neither do I intend to apologize for the conduct of my Lord, for he is too wise to err.
Well do I remember a time in my past life, when in my very soul I believed that if I was damned, God would remain just, and if he saves all the rest but Joel Hume, and damns him, he will still be just. I might introduce a host of scriptures upon the point just mentioned. You need not suppose, dear friends, that the fountain is exhausted; the Bible abounds in such declarations. All I ask is, for some brother to tell me what these passages mean. But that I may convince you that I have not misrepresented the matter, I will give one or two more quotations.
Do you remember when the Saviour uses this language: "The tares are the children of the wicked one, and he that sowed them is the devil." Do you remember reading in Daniel, language like this: "The wicked shall do wickedly, and none of the wicked shall understand, but the righteous shall understand." If you have not read that, you may. I might go on till your patience would be worn out in quoting scripture of this character; but if my life was at stake, I can not see how it is possible to get these two classes together. He has given us characteristics by which we may determine on which side of this great question you or I stand.
My dear friends, I cheerfully acknowledge with all the confidence I have in my worthy opponent, and in the brethren who stand identified with him, I say with all my confidence in the purity of the motives that influence him upon this occasion, and in the vital purity of the principles of Christianity everywhere, I can not believe the doctrine he advocates; and surely men ought not to be condemned for what they can not help. I am irresistibly constrained to the belief that Jehovah is sovereign in the accomplishment of any purpose, and that he never intends to be thwarted.
I would now remark, for my time is nearly out, that this system of things, as we understand it, has never stood in the way of the salvation for a sinner; that God has never decreased that any individual on earth should be damned, as we have heard charged about infants; that we embrace fully the saying, that "whosoever will, may come and take of the water of life freely." I care not where the man live, or what his name, or color, or condition, if he is willing to be saved, God rejects none. The point of difference between us is this; he maintains the position that mankind in unregeneracy possess the volition of will upon this subject (of choosing eternal life), while I maintain, that no unregenerate sinner has a will to seek Christ. Why not? Because they love sin. And till their love of sin is destroyed, till they are led to realize its damning qualities, and get a desire to live in holiness, they will remain in sin; just as long as they love sin, they do not love holiness; consequently, whenever their mind is arrested, whenever their ears and judgment are unstopped, till they hear the voice of God calling to them as sinners to live, then it is their privilege to return. See John's Gospel v, 25: "Verily, verily, I say unto you, the hour is coming and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God, and they that hear shall live." Here is the evidence upon which I found the remarks just made. I learn from Ephesians ii, 1: "That sinners are dead in trespasses and sin." I would be much pleased to know how much labor a dead man can perform? The dead man in religion can perform nothing. I learn moreover, when the Holy Ghost is speaking in regard to our condition as sinners: "That when ye were yet without strength, in due time Christ died." How much weaker can a man be than to be without strength; can he do anything, can he even turn his eyelids without strength? I see some doctors here who understand anatomy, perhaps they can tell whether a man can be weaker than he is, when he is without strength; the Holy Ghost says they are dead in sin, and without strength; and I say God never has required them to exercise faith in him while in that condition. I repeat God never has, and never can, require individuals to exercise faith in him, in Jesus Christ, in that condition: for this reason, God never requires spiritual action from spiritual agents. Consequently, before the sinner can exercise spiritual faith or any of the Christian graces, he must become spiritual. To wind up the matter, in regard to repentance, my brother tells you, men possess the volition of will, and that they can repent. I propose to show that he is greatly mistaken. Turn to Acts v, 31; you will there find this language: when speaking of the exhortation of the Son of God, the apostle says: "Him hath God exalted with his right hand, to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins." Now, if that was the mission of Christ, the sinner can not perform till he gives repentance. (Time expired.)
STINSON'S THIRD SPEECH
ON THE SECOND PROPOSITION.
Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen:--I rise to close my part of the discussion on this proposition; and I must acknowledge myself bewildered. He spoke of my misfortune, or of my needing a little eye salve of divine grace. I acknowledge the necessity of more grace.
[Hume--So do I.]
I ask for more light, but with the little light I have I will try to trace him. The first point he makes distinctly is that sinners are damned for unbelief. He claims that, I suppose, as regular Baptist doctrine. He then tells us positively that there are no sinners that can believe, and he quoted scripture to prove it. I can not follow him in detail and give you my understanding of those passages he quoted; but he told us that sinners are damned for unbelief, and that there are those that can not believe. He told us so yesterday. He told us that God never did require an impossibility of man. Put these ideas together: "Could not believe--damned for not believing," and what can you make of it? Yet God never requires an impossibility. They are his own ideas. But he makes this point by a personal appeal in his own behalf. He tells us he can not believe the doctrine I advocate. Mark the expression: can not believe. I suppose he means to be understood that he can not believe ALL. Surely I advocate doctrines that he does believe. He can't believe the doctrine I advocate, and therefore he appeals to the congregation not to condemn him, for it is impossible for him to believe, and he ought not to be condemned for not doing that which he can not do. He appeals to you not to condemn him, and then tells us that God damns the sinner for not believing when the sinner can not believe. These are the points he has made; and I say, put them together; let him try to reconcile them; it is for him to do so and not for me. I have but little time to crowd in proof, and perhaps I shall find myself lost; but the point in the proposition is that man possesses the power to "choose eternal life." I do not know that I could more clearly demonstrate this than by proving that eternal life had been chosen. There was once an axiom put up over a philosopher's door, which says, that "what had been done by man could be done by man again." If men have already chosen eternal life, I say, if we prove this a fact, we shall not only sustain the first part of the proposition, but it will prove, also, that men may yet choose eternal life. I shall first quote from Luke x, 42: "And Mary hath chosen that good part which shall not be taken away from her." I suppose that means eternal life. I understand this to be the choice she made. This fact proves she could make it, and that it was possible. This I regard as direct evidence. Mark, the controversy is not whether a certain class of men can choose eternal life; not whether Esau or Ishmael could choose eternal life; but whether man, as a moral agent, under the volition of his will, can choose eternal life. I undertake to say that Mary was a moral agent, and did choose eternal life. I will quote from Matthew xvi, 24: "If any man will come after me let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me." I argue that this declaration implies the power of choosing to follow Christ. If the power to choose that course had not existed there would be no will consulted. But the will being introduced proves it to be free; consequently Christ says: "If any man will come after me let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me." I will now quote from Rom. x, 8, 9: "But what saith it? the word is nigh thee even in thy mouth and in thy heart; that is, the word of faith, which we preach: that if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thy heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." Here Paul is speaking to men that had been heathens, and he supposes them to possess the power I claim for all as moral agents, capable of investigation. He tells them God has brought the economy of salvation directly to them, supposing them to have the power of confessing, of believing and choosing Jesus Christ, and being saved. I make another point here, which is this: that to exercise faith in Christ presupposes the fact of our having chosen Christ. No man will question the fairness of this supposition, for no man or woman ever did believe in Christ without first having chosen him. If I show that we can believe in Christ, will it not be (at least indirectly) showing that we can choose Christ? Jesus says, "With the heart man believeth;" and as my worthy friend has given me a rule too go by, that God never commands us to do a thing that is impossible, therefore, when God commands us to believe the thing can be done. Then, if man has the power to believe in Christ, he has the power, in connection with it, to choose Christ. I might introduce a sufficient number of scripture proofs to consume the balance of my half hour. I prefer rather to briefly review the ground I have gone over, as I have not opportunity to reply to his next speech. The first point is that man is a moral agent, endowed with the volition of free will, and is capable of choosing or refusing eternal life. Now, if I have successfully proved the first, the second follows as a matter of course. I proved by argument that God made man a moral agent. My worthy opponent never answered that argument. I not only proved it, but made an appeal to the intelligence of the audience--not for evidence; I did not call upon you for testimony; I merely presented the truth to your consciences, and I now ask you to investigate it. I now appeal to the conscience of every Christian under the sound of my voice; not that the doctrine needs to be supported by your evidence, but I make it to show that my argument has been in harmony with the workings of the Spirit of God upon the hearts of believers in regeneration. If the spirit of Christianity contradicted the doctrine I have advocated, I should disbelieve the doctrine.
The next point I wish to make is this: Before your sins were pardoned, did you feel the effects of the blood of Christ in cleansing you from sin, or did you not choose to be a Christian? I make the appeal to every man who has ever felt convicted for sin. Did you not only choose to be a Christian, but did not you wish and pray that you might become a Christian? Is not this so? Does it meet the experience of all? Then all that are saved choose Christ. I take this for granted, or else they make Christ their own, contrary to their will and choice. One of these positions must be true: either they choose Christ or they are forcibly made Christ's. If you did anxiously pray for and wish to be a Christian, then it argues that you had the power of examining the two sides of the question, and of choosing eternal life and escaping eternal death. Moses said: "I set before you life and death, blessing and cursings; choose life that you may live." Did Moses mean eternal life, or did he set before them temporal life and death? If Moses should come flying down as he did on the mount, and I should ask him to let me introduce the words, "eternal life," in connection with his command, I think he would permit it. Jesus says: "Ye love darkness rather than light." This shows that light and darkness, or life and death, had been presented to them. Are we to argue that the exertion of the voluntary powers would not have enabled them to choose life and immortality, or are we to suppose that God gives us more power to do wrong than to do right? According to this, the sinner has the power of choosing darkness and unbelief; to choose the road to damnation. That he has all his powers in one direction, but has no power to choose life and the road to heaven. Christ calls this the king's highway. Yet the sinner has no power of choosing to become a traveler on the king's highway. We argue that God, by the death of his Son, made a general atonement, and removed the curse that was on the race by Adam's sin, withdrew the flaming sword that guarded the tree of life, and now introduces a system of salvation adapted to all men condemned for their own transgressions, and calls upon them to choose the life that is presented to them, without money and without price. We do not claim that man is commanded to do anything to save himself. We do not claim that he is commanded to put forth a solitary energy. But we suppose that eternal life is OFFERED, and that he has the power to choose it. This my brother is pleased to deny; to deny to the poor condemned sinner the power of choosing when God had introduced salvation, and offered eternal life to him; and yet he has no power of choosing or accepting it. We think the proposition is sustained by evidence, and we claim it to be sustained by reason and common sense. It will go before the world. We have a faithful reporter. It will become a matter of history, to be read by the generations now and those yet unborn, who will read our arguments and our reasoning, and who will determine whether man has the power of choosing eternal life. I might say accepting eternal life, which is almost the same thing. The word accepting has but little difference of meaning, and I would say that the power of accepting argues the power of choosing. This we claim to have established, and leave you to determine. Let me wind up by supposing I have established the proposition, and I now ask and appeal to every unconverted sinner to choose eternal life and be saved for ever more. (Time expired.)
HUME'S THIRD REPLY,
ON THE SECOND PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen: -- I rise again, for the purpose of making the closing speech upon this proposition. Whatever may not be said during the short space of half an hour, will not be said at all in connection with this proposition; and in view of the awful realities of death and judgment, of eternal happiness or suffering, with what awful solemnity and anxiety should we investigate this very solemn and important subject. I desire to know the truths, as an honest man, as one who expects to meet you at the bar of God. I have deeply pondered the subject of Christianity for thirty-five years; yet, I frankly confess I know nothing experimentally of the system that has been presented to the mind of this congregation. You know where I stand, I confess it all; yet, notwithstanding such confession, ignorant and unworthy as I am, there are items when I do indulge a hope that Jesus died for me. And that I have a personal interest in the matchless merits of his atoning blood; that I have a home in heaven--but I have not learned it in the manner we have been hearing. If I used the language that sinners were damned for unbelief, I would change the phraseology; I would make at read thus, "sinners are condemned because of unbelief;" not to be condemned in the future, but already are; hence the language of the Saviour: "You are condemned already;" not that the time is to come, but the language is, you are condemned already, because you have not believed; a matter already settled.
To the question: "Mary, hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her." Did our friend tell us that Mary made that choice in unregeneracy, when she was dead in trespasses and sin; that she made that choice when she took light for darkness, bitter for sweet, good for evil? In the humble conceptions of my mind, all enlightened sinners choose Christ, from the fact that their eyes are opened, because they see. I am inclined to the idea that Mary was in this condition, for she says, my soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit doth rejoice in my God. [Stinson--I think that is not the same Mary.] Just here permit me to remark, that there is a connection of scripture that says, there are some people that take evil for good, and good for evil, light for darkness, and darkness for light, sweet for bitter and bitter for sweet. I would inquire whether that means the Christian, or the unconverted sinner? Surely it will not be contended that these are Christians. We take the ground that they are the unregenerated sinners, and that he is in that state religiously, in consequence of sin in his heart. Take the most honest sinner in this house, that desires most sincerely to go to heaven--well, he sets about the work, and in his soul he believes he is good. Let him be possessed of a great desire go to heaven; he engages in the work--he calls evil, good; light, darkness; and darkness, light. The question is, will he not go in the wrong direction every step? Though he stands as an honest man, and believes he is right, but yet he takes evil for good, and good for evil. I ask, will he ever get there? We learn again from the scripture, when it characterizes the condition of fallen man: "That every imagination of the fallen heart, is only evil, and that continually." I will receive instruction from any brother in this house; the instruction I desire in this: If the imagination of the heart is evil continually, tell me, when and how, he is to get to heaven? [Stinson--By getting better.] Will any man make an effort to get better, when the imagination of the heart is evil continually? Will you tell me where he will begin, and how he will start? But again: "The heart is deceitful, and above all things desperately wicked." While the heart remains in that condition, will the sinner turn to God? I ask you, will the sinner seek the Lord, while his heart is in that condition? surely not. If he will not, then our brother's proposition falls, for if he makes a choice, he will choose the evil, the darkness, and the bitter. Consequently, his choice is continually going away from God, instead of coming to him. Connect this expression with the quotation in my former speech, that sinners are dead in trespasses and sin; then connect with them this expression: "The natural man receiveth not the things of the spirit of God; neither can he know them." But our brother says he can. Neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. One of two things is true, either sinners are not natural men, or they can not know the things of the spirit of God. Upon this point, Elder Goodwin took this ground--said he: In gospel lands, where the scriptures are read, there is no such a thing as a natural man. The elder, upon the same occasion, took this ground: no man is a spiritual man till, by profession, he comes into the kingdom of Jesus Christ, and is immersed. Then, I asked this question--said I, elder, will you please tell us, in your next speech, what we old Baptists are--if we are not natural beings, what are we, in the name of God? Do you intend to impress upon our minds the idea that we are artificial. If there is no natural man, then I have got no place for this text; but the Bible emphatically says, that the natural man can not receive spiritual things. This whole argument, that dead sinners can choose eternal life, you see, falls to the ground. But my brother tells us he had not time to follow me into the twelfth of John. I thought, no wonder. Elder Franklin, in my discussion with him at Mount Vernon, had undertaken to mention the same proposition; when I approached this text, he acknowledged the fact that there was some exception to the proposition, and he stated that God had given them over to reprobation of mind. No wonder that he would not follow me into John. Let the matter be as it may, there are some men that can not believe. If that is the case, our brother's proposition is gone; he has acknowledged all I want him to; and will he be kind enough, in the afternoon, to tell us what portion are in this state? Will you tell who they are, and how many that can not believe? for God says, there are some. I have just as much right to say, it is that man, as he has to say it is this man. So you see the fact remains that God declares there are some that can not believe. I will add, that he distinctly declares the fact, but the reason why they can not, says the prophecy which proceeded out of the mouth of Isaiah is, that God had hardened their hearts, and blinded their eyes, lest they should see and hear and be saved.
[Stinson--You will allow me to say that there was a time when these men could have believed.]
Then we have this kind of an idea, that there is a time when probation ceases; that there is a time when they may and a time when they may not; when they can and can not. Oh! thou servant of the most high God, will you tell the people just when that time is? If this is so, we ought to be very careful how we speak of this matter. If the salvation of sinners depends upon a correct understanding of this point, we can never be too particular in determining to what extent that probation exists among men. But I understand Brother Stinson to say, that upon the ground of faith he predicated the doctrine of choosing Christ. Supposing, for the sake of argument, I admit this, what will be the result? I think he will find that his proposition will not be sustained; for the Bible says all men have not faith. What will he do with them? Now, here is a plain declaration--all men have not faith. Another, that without faith it is impossible to please God. Now, tell me how these men without faith are to please him? If they can not please him, how then can they be saved? So much for the subject of faith in that place.
His next point is, that Christian experience has demonstrated the truth of his position. Oh, my soul! have I been deceived for thirty-five years? Am I yet dead? Am I yet a stranger to God and the covenant he has made? If I know anything about Christian experience, I will say there was a time when I cared no more about my own soul than if I had had none. I had no desire to go to church, nor to read the Bible; I had no desire to hear any talk upon that subject. I was not seeking the Saviour; I was running away from God--sinning against him with a high hand and an outstretched arm; but I shall never forget, while I am allowed a place upon God's footstool, the first serious thought that crossed my mind upon the subject of Christianity. I have heard men talk about agencies and instrumentalities in this grand work, but if there was any agency in my awakening to my condition as a sinner, it was the abominable practice of blaspheming the name of God. At that time I was working as a hand upon a steamboat. There I heard the most blasphemous oaths that ever disgraced humanity, and the thought occurred to my mind what an awful wicked set of beings you are; and the next thought was, you are as bad as they. These men pour out all that is in them, while you conceal it up as filth. I ask you, friends, was I choosing--was I desiring? Surely not. But from that hour till the day I trusted in God, I was unable to see how God could be just and save sinners. I chose holiness and despised sin, and never shall I forget the last afternoon of the deep agony of my soul; it was in a paw-paw thicket, in the east end of this state. My soul feels deeply interested when I think upon that dark and gloomy evening. I left the spot with this conviction: hell is my portion; I am doomed, and there is no mercy for such a rebel as you. I went to the little cabin in which I was living, and I leaned against the wall and closed my eyes. Oh, Christian friends! if my tongue had been taken out by the roots, every breath would have gone up to God in prayer. Till then I was not seeking Christ, but he sought and found me. Christ revealed himself to me. I would say to every sinner, I care not what your names, if you live as Christians, have not these been some of your exercises?
We were next told the will must be brought into action. I admit the fact; but the next question is, what kind of will is it? Is it the carnal will with which we will to sin? Now, I make this statement, that, in the absence of light, there is no will, and in the absence of will, there is no action. The first important thing, then, is divine light in the soul; out of that divine light there comes a will, and out of the will comes practice. Now, with reference to the passage where Moses says, "I set before you life and death, blessing and curses; choose life that ye may live," etc.; I have this to say, in the presence of all the ministering brethren here, as well as this respectable audience, that, under the conditional covenant, God never, at any time, promised eternal life to any man in it. Mark it well, and I challenge the wisdom of this audience on the other side of the question, that God never threatened eternal damnation under that covenant; consequently, no such declaration can be found, either in the 18th or 33d chapter of Ezekiel. What are the facts presented? They are these: if you will do so and so, you shall live; but if you do so and so, you shall die. That is the language. There is nothing about eternal life or eternal death. Temporal blessings and temporal cursings, temporal life and temporal death, are all that is promised under that covenant. It was a typical covenant. God says (I will quote the covenant, Heb. viii, 10): "I will make a new covenant, not according to the covenant I made with their fathers when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; and this is the covenant I will make with them: I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people, and they shall not teach every man his neighbor, saying, Know the Lord; for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest; and I will be merciful to their unrighteousness. [Oh thank the Lord!] I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more." (Time expired.)
MR. STINSON'S THIRD PROPOSITION
That personal salvation is free to all men, and offered to all on certain conditions, to be performed by man, the performance of which, results in his salvation.
[After some conversation between the disputants, as to the propriety of dropping the third proposition, it was agreed to retain it, but that it should be disposed of in a half a day, and that the speeches should be confined to a half hour each.--Rep.]
After prayer, the president read the proposition, as the subject for debate:
STINSON'S FIRST SPEECH
ON THE THIRD PROPOSITION.
Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen:--I again appear as the affirmant, but before I say own word upon this proposition, I wish to occupy a few minutes, if it be in order. Elder Hume in his closing remarks yesterday, took issue on the appeal I made to the experience of Christians, upon the subject of choosing Christ. I suppose he and I would have no difficulty, had he correctly understood me; all he said need not have been brought in. I would not refer to it, but for the fact, that he declared on rising, that if I had stated the truth, then he knew nothing of Christianity by experience. He told us his experience in confirmation of his position. The point I wish to call your attention to is this: I did state unequivocally that before the penitent sinner received remission, he did choose Christ, or chose to become a Christian. Elder Hume told us that from the time he was enlightened, he had not chosen Christ. I wish to make this remark, to show that however wide we may differ upon doctrinal points, there is nothing I have said intentionally to bring us at issue upon this vital point (experimental religion). We have gained one thing, however; we have learned Elder Hume's experience, which we might never have got, had it not been called forth.
[Hume--I wish to remark, that if what he states be correct, I misunderstood him; he and I are together.]
Now, we take up the third proposition; and the last in which I have to appear as the affirmant. Salvation is free to all, and offered to all on certain conditions, etc. I will not be expected that I can introduce a very great amount of evidence in the time allotted to me. This proposition is but a part of the two that went before it. On the supposition that the others were sustained, this one comes in as a matter of course. I presume it will scarcely be required of me in sustaining this, to prove that salvation, if free to all men--free, I understand, to mean in this connection, offered without money and without price, or bestowed freely on the penitent sinner, without reference to any merit or act he can perform. That it is offered to all, has been already shown, and I would remark, that the evidence which supports the first proposition, will apply to this, and that some of the scriptures that were quoted in that conversation, must necessarily be quoted again.
First, then, turn to Romans x, 12: "For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him." This text in bringing forward the Jew and the Greek, seems to represent the whole human family, that it is free to all, that there is no difference. I do not pretend to say, that the Jews and Greeks were all men, but I understand the apostle as taking them up and making the application in such a way, that it will meet the condition of the whole human race. It is offered to all. See Isaiah xlv, 22: "Look unto me and be saved, all ye ends of the earth, for I am God," etc. This has been introduced and controverted before, and has, by Brother Hume, been interpreted to mean the Jews. If it did mean the Jews, it meant all the Jews. If it meant ends of the earth occupied by the Jews, it meant all of that nation; then if he was willing to save all the ends of the earth of the Jewish family in those days, he is willing to save them now; and as Paul comes in and says, there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek, then I say he is willing to save all the ends of the earth of the gentile nations. Again, Mark xvi, 15: "Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature." This has been controverted, and an attempt made to show that it did not mean the race. Brother Hume is too much of a gentleman, to introduce one text to disprove another, or to show that this can not mean the human race. I will anticipate, if he should, by quoting from Rev. v, 13: "And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, blessing and honor and glory," etc. Here, the word creature is the word he excepts to. I understand the first quotation to refer to mankind: "Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel."
[Hume--I admit that the commission embraces the human race.]
He admits that the commission embraces the human race; that is coming to the point. The apostles were commissioned to preach the gospel to the human race. By his admitting this, we have accomplished one point in establishing out third proposition, that it is offered to all. The preaching of the gospel and the offer of salvation, I regard as the same thing. With this amount of evidence, we will pass this point, and approach the one where the most opposition may be expected. We allude to that point, when salvation is offered on certain conditions, the performance of which results in his salvation. Before quoting scripture upon this subject, I will explain what I mean by "conditions." It is this: Salvation is offered to man if he will comply with, or do the things God has commanded him to do, before he is regenerated. Among these is that of repentance. The requisition of repentance is as extensive as the proclamation of the gospel. My friend having admitted that preaching the gospel to every creature, means to the race, I assert that repentance is required from the race. In support of this, we will quote enough scripture to keep the reporter pretty busy in dotting them down.
First, we call your attention to Mat. iii, 2: "John the Baptist preached, saying, repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." Mark i, 15: Jesus preached, "repent ye and believe the gospel." Here, repentance is connected with a condition, the main condition upon the exercise of which we have the promise of salvation. "Repent ye and believe the gospel." Acts iii, 19: "Repent ye therefore, that your sins may be blotted out." Luke xiii, 3: "Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish." Acts xvii, 30: "The time of this ignorance God winked at, but now commandeth all men everywhere to repent." Acts x, 43: "To him gave all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins."
The next text reads thus: "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" The answer is: "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved." Here we have faith as the condition upon the performance of which the sinner has the promise of salvation. The question of the power to do all these things will necessarily come up to notice; and as I have but one more speech, I will anticipate my brother, and perhaps supersede the necessity of wasting strength on this point. He will, perhaps, tell us that man is dead and can do nothing; not one of which scriptures will I controvert. He has admitted and allowed man more natural powers than I would have been willing to accord--the power to do all that is good except to be a Christian. Man, independent of God, has no power--he is in the dark, without strength. All the ability, therefore, that is necessary to be called up in the performance of these conditions, comes from the Father of light; all the strength to obey these commandments is from God; all the light necessary to guide the trembling sinner, of course, flows from him who was the true light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world. My opponent need not, therefore, waste strength in controverting this. But the question is, can man neglect to obey what he is commanded to do and thereby lose his salvation, when by obeying and using his power, it will result in his salvation? In my next discourse it will be my duty to present this matter, with some additional evidence: as I hope to be able to show that man has thus been saved. We have quoted scripture to show that God's method of salvation is to preach to both Jew and Greek; and we may, perhaps, be able to show some examples in our next speech, if the elder should not be so prolific as to give us too much to answer. (Time expired.)
HUME'S FIRST REPLY
ON THE THIRD PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen: It must now be manifest to every one of you, why I, in my correspondence with Elder Stinson, and in my suggestions since I came here, desired these two propositions blended together. I wrote to him that, if the propositions remained as they were then, we must necessarily occupy the same ground twice, and that repetition is generally irksome to an audience. The same facts have been stated to him since we have been together; nevertheless, it seems not to be his pleasure to grant the union of these two propositions, second and third, but to discuss them separately. I do not possess sufficient wisdom to see any difference in the doctrine of the two propositions. That the wording is different, none will deny, but the doctrine is precisely the same. I am inclined to think that he is of the same opinion now, from the fact that we have had no new texts of scripture--neither can we have but very few, for the same facts are to be proved again in regard to the command of Christ to the apostles to preach the gospel, and to preach that gospel to every creature under heaven. I am as unshaken a believer in its truth as any man. Neither do I believe that Christ, in the giving of that commission, designed it to be restricted, but that it should be preached in all the world. I would, however, ask, hoping an answer from him, for what purpose was that gospel to be preached? Will an answer from Elder Stinson or one from Mr. Hume be more satisfactory than one from Christ? This point is settled by the Saviour in these words: "And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world, for a witness unto all nations." That is the language of the Saviour. That God requires the preaching of the gospel for that purpose, I do verily believe. That is enough on that subject. While I admit this fact, I am not at all ashamed to acknowledge my ignorance as relates to some portions of scripture. And here I will make an admission that my friends are welcome to the benefit of, if any can be derived from it; it is this: the 15th verse of the 1st chapter of Mark has caused me more serious study, more close attention, more intense application, and perhaps more prayer to God, than any other one passage found in the Bible; and I confess now that there has been no passage introduced into this discussion about which my mind is as unsettled: "The time is fulfilled, the kingdom of heaven is at hand; repent ye, and believe the gospel." That is the whole text; and I can not, as an honest man, tell you that this address was made to the disciples; consequently, the mystery in my mind is in regard to its application. I can not reconcile that single verse with the general tenor of Revelation upon the subject. The best I can do is this: I learn from the Bible that where the word of a king is, there is power. Jesus Christ was the king, and when he made this commandment, he possessed power to enforce it, and understood to whom it was to be applied. Now, if that is not the meaning, I confess I do not understand it. I would not know how to reconcile that expression with what the apostle says, in Acts v, 31, where it says that God has exalted Christ with his own right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. Now, if repentance is an act of the creature, and if mankind possess that power, I can not see the propriety of Christ being exalted to give it. It is either a gift of Christ, or an act of the creature; it is not both. Here we have an emphatic declaration that God has exalted Christ for that purpose, not only to give repentance to Israel, but forgiveness of sins. This is precisely the view I entertain of the gospel plan.
Another argument--I believe that everything connected with the Christian system is of a spiritual character; and, as my worthy friend has remarked, and I would say truly, sinners are in a state of death or alienation from God. I have his evidence of the fact that sinners are not only dead, but without strength. I can not, to save my life, see how a creature in that condition can perform any kind of spiritual action. Mankind, in nature, are but natural; while everything pertaining to Christianity or the gospel is spiritual; all the graces of the Divine Spirit are spiritual. The question, then, is this, will Jehovah require spiritual action from natural agents, and then damn that agent for not performing that action? Now, I want an answer. If my brother will say that these requisitions are of a spiritual character, I will give him my hand; there is no difference between us. I repeat, does Jehovah require spiritual action from natural agents? If he does, then his view is correct; but if he does not, then his view is incorrect, as I understand it. He then refers us to a declaration like this, "With the heart man believeth unto righteousness." Now, I believe that as much as any lady or gentleman in this house. My friend presents this idea, "that the exercise of this faith is within the compass of the power of the race of men." I would like him, in his next speech, to reconcile that idea with the admission made in his last. One was (as Elder Franklin said) that there were some men that had passed the day of probation. I desire an answer. If there are some men that can not, then I would like to know who they are. I understand my brother's proposition as presenting the idea that the gospel of salvation is offered to all men, and he says all men means the race. Now, he tells us there are some of that race that can not believe. He tells us the reason they can not believe is in consequence of their having gone so far from God in sin. Now, if you can fix that up, I want it done. The last admission before he sat down was fatal to him; that is, that the sinner is dead in sin, and without strength. Now, he told us also that the power that would enable the sinner to come to Christ was not in himself--that it came from another. Now, I ask, is that power possessed by the sinner dead in sin? I hope that will be answered, for upon that turns the whole matter. He told us that the power that enabled the sinner to accept or choose came from on high. Now, I desire to know whether the unconverted sinners possess that power. If they do not, then how do they obtain it? Now, we will notice, for a moment, another quotation of scripture, that assigns a different reason why some people did not believe. In John xii, he gave you a quotation, which said they could not believe what Isaiah had said. But we will refer to John x, where it is said: "You believe not on me [well, why; what is the reason?], because ye are not of my sheep. As I said unto you, my sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me, and I give unto eternal life; and they shall never perish; neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand." Now, here is the reason assigned, by Christ himself, why sinners do not believe. It is because they are not of his sheep. Will my worthy brother give the same reason why sinners do not believe? If he will, why then I will shake hands with him again.
Now, my friends, if these things are so, who is right, and who is wrong? I will next invite your attention to Rom. iv, 4, 5: "Now, to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt; but to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness." Also the declaration, "Blessed is the man unto whom God will not impute sin." Again, we have it declared, in the same, that "it is not of him that willeth, but God that showeth mercy." Now, with these passages before us, I submit another question. You say the sinner has salvation offered to him. I ask, does it depend upon his acceptation of that offer? If it does, then I ask, is not that an act of the creature, merely at his will? Here salvation is offered, and if the sinner has the power to accept or reject it, in either case it is the act of the creature, and not the grace of God. If it is an act of the creature, sinners are saved by work; consequently, that idea destroys the doctrine of salvation by grace entirely, and presents a system of salvation founded on work. Now, if this is true, do not you think the gospel ministry ought to be very particular in the description of these conditions--how many they are, what is their character--so that we may know where to begin and how far to go, what to do and what not to do? For if, indeed, this system is suspended, on certain conditions, we ought to know to a certainty how much to do, for a little too much might be as fatal as a little too small. We must know to a certainty, and have it backed by the word of God, where these conditions commence, upon which is suspended the salvation of the soul of a sinner; for that surely is worth more than all the world and its contents.
Now, I take the ground that the salvation of the sinner is suspended upon the sovereign grace of God, unconditionally; what I mean is, Divine light can be imparted by Christ only, and when that light is imparted, the eyes of the sinner are opened; then he sees, then he hears, then he understands, then he is alive, and he can work. In the prophecy of Isaiah it reads thus: "I was found of them that sought me out; I was made manifest to them that asked not of me." Is that the people brought to view in his proposition. Jehovah, in presenting the doctrine of salvation, in presenting the reign of his grace, in calling the dead to life, in calling the ignorant to wisdom, the blind to sight, in calling the unholy to holiness, says, I was found of them that sought me not; I was made manifest to them that asked not after me. Another quotation from the same prophecy: "Yea, I will bring the blind in a way they know not; I will make darkness light to them; these things will I do unto them, and not forsake them." I ask, does he not first give these men sight? Does he require these imperfect, corrupt sinners to perform holy actions, or does he not fill the mind with a desire to perform holy actions? Here is perfect harmony, but there is a perfect jargon in God's requiring the blind man to see, the dead man to do good works. For my life, I can not see as he sees. I agree to admit, if Brother Stinson is right, then I am wrong; it is impossible for us both to be right--he is just as good as I am--neither do I dispute the honesty of his heart, nor question the purity of his motives--to save my life, I can not receive his system. This idea of dead people working, is out of my sight--of blind people judging of colors. I can not understand the idea of natural men performing spiritual actions--it is beyond my reach.
Now, my friend can see further than I; consequently, I take the negative of this proposition. If his system is true, salvation is the result of work. Supposing I repent and believe, or that I don't do either; I ask, upon what does my salvation turn? if I will accept the terms, use the means of grace--if I do this, God will save me--if I will not do this, he damns me. I ask you, upon what does my salvation turn but upon my own doing? You will say, we do not believe in works any more than you, yet, when we come to analyse your whole system, it turns upon works. To illustrate it, I will take a pair of scales, I will put the atonement of Christ in one end, and the Adamic sin in the other end; that precisely balances the scale, consequently the sinner stands precisely as he did before sin was in the world. I will put my sins in one end of the scale; does not the scale balance against me? vice versa, I put my faith and repentance in the other end; do not the scales balance in my favor--is not that my act? There is no man living who can get out of that. If salvation is offered to all men, all men may be saved. If I turn the scale in my own favor, it is my own act--and salvation is of my work.
But what says the apostle: "By grace are ye saved, through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God." "Not of works, lest any man should boast." Is that works? I repeat, that if I put my repentance and faith in one end of the scale, and it balances in my favor, does not my salvation turn upon this point? This totally destroys the doctrine of grace. If you will look at Webster, he defines grace, as the free and unmerited love and favor of God. I ask you, upon condition that I do these things, I obtain favor, is that merited? I care not how small it may be, if it is only the crooking of a finger, if my salvation turns upon that crooking, is it not my work; and does not my salvation turn upon it? (Time expired.)
STINSON'S LAST SPEECH,
ON THE THIRD PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen:--In the short space of half an hour, I have to close my part of the investigation of this proposition. My worthy opponent in following me, has recognized much of the evidence I introduced, but denies its application. He has told us that the question between us is, whether salvation is conditional or unconditional? He takes one side, and I take the other. He says he can not, in the honesty of his heart, understand it differently. That all who are saved are saved unconditionally, without any reference to anything they can say or do.
[Hume--I believe that.] Now, permit me to join issue with him on this point, and deny his position, for he has taken a distinct position, that those sinners who are saved are of the elect, and, therefore, their salvation is unconditional and certain.
Is there nothing he can do that would hinder him from being saved, if it be unconditional? I take this view of his position: That nothing that he can do or say can save him, or be the means of his salvation; and that nothing he can say or do will prevent his salvation, or hinder him from being finally and eternally saved. I have admitted the impotence of man, but I am glad that we have a way set before us--a dying Saviour, held forth in the Bible, that promises to save any man who will use all his powers.
I will now bring a point to bear here, which my brother has frequently alluded to in this discussion. He has admitted and asserted that God never required of man that which he could not do; has never given a commandment which he could not obey at the time the commandment was given. I have special use for this rule--God, under the gospel dispensation, commands all men everywhere, to repent. Can this commandment be obeyed? Is there anything in the economy of redemption that precludes the possibility of every man who is thus commanded to repent obeying the commandment? When Jesus said (in Luke xiii, 3): "Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish," are we to understand that these men could not repent, and that, therefore, they must perish, inevitably?
The idea that I wish to impress upon your mind is that the damnation of the sinner is upon his own head. Not for failing to do that which he had not the power to perform, but for neglecting to do that which he might have done. The moral agency we have established clears much upon this point. We hold, therefore, that man, by failing to do what he might have done (repent and believe), subjects himself to just condemnation.
Jesus, before he was crucified, is said to have wept over Jerusalem. His language on that occasion was: "Oh Jerusalem, Jerusalem! thou that killest the prophets and stonest them that were sent unto thee! how often would I have gathered thy children together as a hen gathereth her brood under her wings; but ye would not." Now, if my brother's interpretation was correct, that they would not because they could not, would it not have been pertinent in the Jews, when Jesus said this, to have replied, "We would not, because we could not."
[Hume--You misunderstood me. My language was this: they could not, because they would not.]
The elder says they could not, because they would not. This only changes the matter, and makes it stronger on my side; for it admits that the volition was free; from the fact that they would not, he says they could not. This looks like reasoning, in a circle; you can not, because you will not; and you will not, because you can not. We again refer to the fixed principle, that God requires no effort which it is impossible to perform. He commands all men to repent. This presupposes that the commandment can be obeyed.
I have a few remarks to make on the subject of faith. On one occasion Paul and Silas met a penitent sinner, who felt himself to be lost. He asked them the question, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" What was their reply? "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved." I ask, is there sufficient ability given to obey that commandment? This is the very point. When obedience is indispensable to salvation, would it have been right for him to have said, "I would believe if I could?" or ought he to have made an effort to obey that command to exercise faith in Jesus Christ, to result in his salvation? The question to be settled is this: does man first believe? is belief a condition required of him on his part, and has he the moral powers to examine evidence and believe, or has he not? Here we make the point, that men either believes or God believes for him. The exercise of faith is exclusively the work of God, or man has some agency in it. Our brother quoted a text, "By grace are ye saved through faith." Here he discovers faith enters directly in connection with grace in the salvation of the sinner. We quoted a text which he has never controverted: "With the heart man believeth." Jesus also says: "He that believeth hath everlasting life." If man can not obtain salvation without faith, and if he can with his heart believe, and has the promise of everlasting life upon the exercise of faith, I claim that my position is sustained. I claim that this is a correct view, and that the proposition is established. The question is not whether all men have this saving faith. Elder Hume brings this up again and again. The difficulty that Elder Goodwin and he got into (though I think Elder Goodwin gave him about half of it in that debate--but he seems to have the advantage), is they could not believe because their hearts were hardened. [Hume.--That was Elder Franklin.] They were beyond the limits (if you will allow me the expression) of salvation. He wants me to give my view upon this. I will admit that the Bible teaches the possibility of man sinning away his day of grace, of committing the unpardonable sin, till his conscience becomes seared, till God forever forsakes him. I think the position is easily sustained. If it be possible that this is so, then he wants me to point them out. Who are they? This is requiring a little more than I feel disposed to undertake. It is enough for me to say that there is a possibility of man becoming hardened, of striving against the Holy Ghost, till God will say of him as he did of Ephraim: "He is joined to his idols; let him alone." But in the whole scope of the Bible he finds but one instance (and he is certainly one of the best Bible scholars we have), where there are men that could not believe. I therefore regard it as a rare occurrence. Can a man exercise faith? can a sinner believe in Jesus Christ? can he with his heart believe unto righteousness? The Bible says he can. The Bible says, we are all children of God by faith, and he that believeth shall be saved, and he that believeth not shall be damned. This is my understanding of election and reprobation. It is a decree of God that he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved. Would he command us to believe, would he proclaim that we may be saved by believing in Jesus Christ, unless it became necessary in order to salvation to exercise that faith? Would he issue such a decree if it were impossible for the creature to believe the truth? If this is true, the sinner is damned for not believing. Yet at no period of his life could he believe. Look at it. The only question is, whether the sinner that fails to believe, and subjects himself to condemnation, could have believed. If he could have believed, his condemnation is just; if he could not believe, he is condemned for not doing that which it was impossible for him to do. This expression I wish to leave on record. It will become a matter of history. There are but two sides to this question. I have shown you that faith is a condition of salvation. I have shown you that we are commanded to believe, and that with the heart man does believe. I have shown you that the sinner will be condemned for unbelief. The question recurs again, will he be condemned for not doing that which it was impossible for him to do? I will spend the remaining few minutes of my time in reviewing the ground gone over. I have labored since Tuesday as the affirmant; first introducing the doctrine of a general atonement. In that proposition I labored to show that Christ by his death made full satisfaction to the Adamic law, and set forth a system of salvation fully calculated to save the whole race from their personal transgressions; and in the next place that man was a free agent, endowed with volition or free will, capable of choosing eternal life, as it is proposed in the gospel.
And, now, a few minutes have been spent in showing that it is offered to all, and that the conditions are faith and repentance. I have thus shown the economy of redemption. My worthy brother views it differently. His plan is unconditional salvation, and that no powers on earth can disturb it. Hell may rage, the devil may roar, yet this unconditional plan of salvation will reach every person it was intended to save. He will not, in charity, allow that a laudable effort on the part of us Arminians, might succeed in bringing some poor sinner, who would not come in under the influence of his rigid system. Surely; we can possibly do no harm; if the thing is changed, it will be for the better, and man will be benefitted by our efforts, if affected at all. Here, I have another remark to make. I am now closing, and this young man has dotted down our speeches, and the recording angel has kept a record. I may have said or done many things I would rather not have happened, in my religious life; but there is one thing in which I have never been fearful of committing an error, and that is, in offering Jesus Christ to too many. Never have I been fearful that I would persuade too many sinners to turn to God. Never have I been fearful of deceiving a sinner in that direction. I never expect to meet a sinner at the bar of God, who will say to me, sire, you told me that Christ died for me, but you were mistaken; he never did: he never died to save my soul. I never expect to meet one in this position, and may God help me so to conduct myself, that it may not be said to me that I saw the sword coming and did not blow the trumpet. May it never be said to me that I saw the sinner in danger, and did not warn him.
Elder Hume has thrown a good many difficulties in my way, but according to my understanding of the Bible and the economy of redemption, he has failed, utterly failed, to disprove my proposition. (Time expired.)
HUME'S CLOSING REPLY
ON THE THIRD PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen:--I am now before you on the first negative of my friend's last affirmation, consequently I am not allowed to enter any new argument; neither do I desire to make the effort. I notice briefly some of his positions, and wind up by a recapitulation. The first thing that I notice is, that the damnation of the sinner is in consequence of failing to do what he could not do. It will require but a few words, together with my views upon that text, to answer it. I shall give them in the language of the Bible, not of Brother Stinson. The Bible declares that sinners are condemned already. We are condemned already, and what we need is justification from it; hence, no act of the sinner involves him in it, for he is already there--let that be distinctly understood. The next reference was to the language of the Saviour: "Oh Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets and stonest them that were sent unto thee, how oft would I have gathered my children as a hen gathereth her brood under her wings, but ye would not."
Another text: "Ye will come unto me that ye might have live." Now, my friends, if the sinner has not got the will, must he not receive it from some one else? They had no desire, consequently there was no affection in that direction. I did not suppose this language belongs to the people in the metropolis of Judea, neither do I suppose it belongs to the inhabitants in general. My own view is, that the language is meant for the Jewish Sanhedrin, who build their courts in that city. What are we to believe from it? How oft would I have gathered you as a hen gathers her chickens under her wings.
The meaning of it is, that the hen gathers those that are outside, under her wings, consequently it has no reference to the gathering together of the people of God. We learn from it, that if the inhabitants of Jerusalem and the land of Judea had submitted to the government that God had ordained over them, and by which they were to be governed, then their laws and government would have protected them, shielded them from the oppression of their enemies. "But inasmuch as ye would not, behold your house is left unto you desolate." I intend to let the enemy loose upon you. It has no reference to spiritual things, but refers to a national calamity. I think I can find the antetype or spiritual import of that language in the Church of Christ. I would apply the same language to the Church of God collectively, to show how that God hath blessed us abundantly, and hath let his grace come among you; but your hearts are hard, they are leading you away from the truth and from him, leading you into distress and darkness. That is my understanding of the import of the text. Respecting the inquiry of the jailor--"What must I do to be saved?" that is very pertinent, and if Brother Stinson will show me such another case, I will offer him the same counsel. But will that counsel be applicable to the hardened sinner? Show me an anxious inquirer, and I will say to him, believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved. We should not differ only in regard to the character to whom the address was made. The next thing was, has man got the power to believe? I do not suppose God believes for anybody; then the question is, has man the power? I answer, that man does not only possess the power, but when the evidence comes before his eyes; it is absolutely irresistible. My brother could not help believing it was old Joel Hume that was speaking, if he had to be hung till he was dead. So with every child of God, when the evidence comes before them that Jesus Christ is their Saviour, faith is irresistible. You know this is so, when you believed in the Lord Jesus; you could not help it. I do not remember how many kinds of faith there are in the Bible; there is such a theory spoken of as the faith of men and the faith of devils, as false faith, as little faith, as great faith; but the faith I have in view here, is the faith of God's elect. I inquire, who has this faith? The answer is, God's spiritual Israel possess that faith, and nobody else.
I read of men who have not got faith, and that without faith it is impossible to please God. I learn also, that the faith of God's elect is an effect of the spirit of God. If faith is an effect of the spirit of God, it is not the act of the creature, only so far as evidence leads his mind to believe.
Brother Stinson has just acknowledged in so many words, that his proposition is not true. Do not be startled at that remark; for if I do not give it you in his own language, I will acknowledge I misunderstood him, and take it all back. Just turn to the proposition: Salvation is offered to all men, is free to all men, upon certain conditions to be performed. Now, connect with that his remark--some men are beyond the bounds of salvation. I take this as a plain surrender of the proposition. I have not done this for him; he tells you salvation is free to all men, and turns round and tells you that some men are beyond the bounds of salvation. Do I not thus prove, by his own account, that his proposition is not true? Have I not proved that salvation is by grace and not by works?
I know that Brother Stinson feels he is in a difficulty, but he put himself there by this last admission, that there is a certain class of men who, in consequence of their sins and rebellion, could not be saved--so we have the admission that there are some, at least, who could not believe the gospel. Our brother told us I had found one such text, but that he believed they were very scarce, or very rare. Now, friends, did you hear him say anything about the passage I referred to in John x: "Ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep." Here is another class of individuals. Did he say anything about these? Yet Christ says, "ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep." Now mark the next: "My sheep hear my voice, but you do not, because you are not my sheep." Moreover, did he say one single word in opposition to the remark, that if his views were correct, men were saved by works and not by grace?
You remember my exposition by the scales to show that salvation was by works. Then there was no grace in it. You remember distinctly that I read from the Bible, "It is not of him that willeth, or of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy, and not according to our works." I confess I did not hear anything about that from him. I suppose the reason why it was not noticed, must have been he had not time to do it, or else he thought the position unanswerable. Was there any opposition taken to the position, that if my salvation turned upon my crooking my finger, no matter how small an act, that single act destroys grace; for the crooking of the finger is my work, and salvation is the product of it. If he has objected to that, I did not hear it. I, in connection with my brother, have been laboring faithfully since twelve o'clock Tuesday, and I would ask you, dear friends, what motive, think you, would prompt men to labor and toil without the promise of a single cent, in a pecuniary point of view? Is it reasonable to suppose that men would thus toil, if they had not some deep interest and abiding desire for the glory of God? The views of both the speakers you have before you. You will take them home with you, examine them carefully till you arrive at a conclusion; and if, after examining the evidence, you think he has produced the best arguments, and has maintained his position, then believe him. On the other hand, if in your hearts you think that the strength of the argument has been upon the other side, bad as you may have hated it, prejudiced as you may have been against it, I ask, would it not be your duty as rational and intelligent ladies and gentlemen, bound in common with us to the bar of God, to come out honestly and acknowledge the fact, not only acknowledge it theoretically, but practically? Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify our Father which is in heaven.
Our brother states in the winding up (this was only a flourish of rhetoric), that not only is this friend recording our remarks, but that the recording angel is doing the same. How does he know this? I do not; but of one thing I am certain, and that is, the great and eternal Jehovah knows every thought and act and all the motives that prompted myself, and the motives that prompt every individual. I ask you, dear friends, whether Baptists, or Methodists, or of any other church, if you feel a particle of jealousy, a particle of envy or prejudice, for God's sake lay it aside--examine this matter carefully. If I am wrong, no man on earth would be so benefitted by knowing it as I would. If I am right, God is good, and nothing on earth will be so good as he to those who realize these truths.
I maintain that wherever a divine impression is made, there is always a corresponding course of conduct; hence, the man who does not live religiously, I have little faith in his having any religion. I do not care in what he believes, if his conduct is not right in the sight of God, according to the Bible, I have no fellowship with him, whether in the Baptist Church or out of it. The religion that I maintain is to give men a holy desire, and when that is the case, I tell you the light will shine forth; it will be as a city set on a hill; it is from such we hear the songs of Zion. Oh, my dear friends, there is nothing on earth that seems to do me so much good as the idea that God loves me, although I may do wrong; though I may sin against him, yet will he never take away his loving kindness. Where are you, father or mother? If your child runs away from home, would you not, if you had the power, bring him back? Would you not assimilate them into the image of the father, and inspire their souls to obey the father's will? I know you would say, "Yes, sir." Would you erase his name and say, "he is not my son?" Oh, no! Although he has violated my commandments, yet I love him still, and my love I will never take from him. So it is with God. With all our doubts and fears, with all our failings and deep departure, our God loves us still. Oh, my friends, I have thought, and think many a time, surely I was more indebted to Jesus than any poor sinner on earth. I feel he has forgiven me more. I ask, will your Saviour thus act? Will he thus make himself manifest to his children, and after all suffer the enemy to take them from him? Surely it can not be so. There is not a father here that would thus suffer it. Well, is not our Heavenly Father as benevolent in his affection, and as tender as we are? Hear what he says: "The mother may forget her child; such a thing is possible; yet will I never forget thee." Oh, blessed Saviour, that has thus died for sinners, and in his sweet heavenly voice says: "Come unto me, all ye that labor." But where does he invite the gambling man, the cursing, blaspheming drunkard? Nowhere. He invites the poor mourning soul and sin-stricken sinner, to come to Jesus, for he has died for such. He says: "Take my yoke upon you, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and you shall find rest to your soul." Will you receive it, children? May God bless you all; may he help us all to love him more; may our light shine more than ever, so that our last days may be our best, that when we come to die, we may be enabled to say, "I have fought a good fight; I have kept the faith; henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of glory; not to me only, but to all who love his name." These are our views. They are presented with a deep desire for the honor of God and the glory of his name. Dear friends, if you desire to promote these, do your duty--be faithful unto death. (Time expired.)
PART II -- DEBATE ON THE PROPOSITIONS OF MR. HUME.
MR. HUME'S FIRST PROPOSITION
That the elect of God or church of Christ was chosen in him, before the foundation of the world, and that Christ died for them only, and that all that Christ died for will be eternally saved.
HUME'S FIRST ADDRESS
ON THE FIRST OF HIS PROPOSITIONS.
The President read the proposition as the subject of discussion, of which Elder Hume was the affirmant, and Elder Stinson the negative:
Gentlemen Moderators Ladies and Gentlemen:--I appear before you on this occasion as the affirmant of the proposition that has just been read in your hearing. You will, no doubt, have discovered that it is a compound proposition, embracing three different and very important points: First. The doctrine of election or choice. Second. The doctrine of the atonement. Third. The doctrine of the final perseverance of the saints. Each point contains matter sufficient to occupy the little talent I possess for at least one day. So you discover I shall have to do in one day what I ought to have three days to perform. This being the case, the evidence must necessarily be compounded also. To hunt out evidence for each one of these points in the proposition would be next to impossible; consequently the proof will be compounded and introduced to meet each of the three general points set out in the proposition as I progress. I have agreed to affirm that the elect of God or church of Christ was chosen in him before the foundation of the world, and that the Saviour or Messiah died for them only, and that those characters for whom he died will be eternally saved. The doctrine I propose to believe could not be more fully set forth in so many words. It will be my business today to prove this proposition if I can. I have, up to this time, been on the negative. How far I succeeded in that position is left for you to say; and how far I may succeed as the affirmant will also be left for you to say. I have no other evidence to introduce but what is found in the sacred scriptures. Most likely three fourths of my time in the first hour will be devoted to quotations from scripture. [A thought has just occurred to my mind that will break the thread of my discourse. I wish to offer an explanation for a remark that I made yesterday, which, as I have been told by my friends, has made rather an unfavorable impression upon the minds of some. The remark was made to Brother Stinson that if there was a little more eye salve of divine grace applied he might see a little more clearly. The impression with some is that I desired to convey the idea that Brother Stinson was not a Christian. I simply designed to convey this idea; if he had a little more light he might be able to see a little more clearly the point I thought I saw. I have never called in question, neither do I now, the Christianity of our brother. Neither shall I question the purity of his motives till I get reasons I have not now. With these remarks I will proceed to introduce such testimony as I may have.]
We will invite your attention in the first place to Deut. vii, 6-8: "For thou art a holy people unto the Lord thy God. The Lord thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth. The Lord did not set his love upon you, nor choose you because ye were more in number than any people, for ye were the fewest of all people. But because the Lord loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers, hath the Lord brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen from the hand of Pharaoh, king of Egypt." Notice in that text there is the doctrine of choice and redemption; so you see it will enable us to divide the evidence on these points in following out the language of the proposition. Here we have a positive declaration that God has chosen that people, and has a peculiar affection for them. Deut. xxxii, 9: "For the Lord's portion is his people. Jacob is the lot of his inheritance." We take the ground that a man's portion is the whole of what he possesses, and the lot of his inheritance conveys the same idea. Here, then, we have it emphatically stated that there is a people that is the Lord's portion, a people that is a lot of the inheritance of the Lord. We naturally receive the idea from these facts that the church of God in type is here presented. This is beautifully carried out and taught in the New Testament, as we shall be able to show before we set down. Ezekiel xxxiv, 30, 31: "Thus shall they know that I, the Lord their God, am with them, and that they, even the house of Israel, are my people, saith the Lord God. And ye, my flock of my pasture, are men, and I am your God, saith the Lord God." Isaiah xl, 10, 11: "Behold the Lord God will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him. Behold his reward is with him, and his work before him. He shall feed his flock like a shepherd; he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young." You will discover God's affection for his people is taught here. The doctrine of atonement, of freeing from guilt, is clearly set forth and taught here as being an act of the great Jehovah, and according to the language of the prophet, it is in the `past tense.' That the people may understand it, I will read it again. [After reading the two verses again Elder Hume proceeded.] This is a particular point to which I direct your attention. I remark that if Jerusalem is designed to represent the church of God, if it is designed to represent the elect of God, then we have this very important idea: that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned; for he says, in the first and second verse of the same chapter, Isaiah xl, 12 (I will read them): "Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God; speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her that warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned, for she hath received of the Lord's hand double for all her sins." We take the ground that where iniquity is pardoned there is no power to condemnation; consequently justification is the result, and salvation follows. I will read Isaiah xli, from the 8th to the 14th verse: "But thou, Israel, art my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend. Thou whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and called thee from the chief men thereof, and said unto thee, Thou art my servant, I have chosen thee, and not cast thee away. Fear thou not; for I am with thee; be not dismayed, for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. Behold, all they that were incensed against thee shall be ashamed and confounded; they shall be as nothing; and they that strive with thee shall perish. Thou shalt seek them, and shalt not find them, even them that contended with thee; they that war against thee shall be as nothing, and as a thing of nought. For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee. Fear not, thou worm Jacob, and ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the Lord, and thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel." If the doctrine of choice, of God's choice, is not taught here, then I would like to see the passage in God's word where it is taught.
Turn to the forty-third chapter of Isaiah, from the first to the seventh verse: "But now, thus saith the Lord that created thee, Oh Jacob, and he that formed thee, Oh Israel, fear not; for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name, thou art mine. When thou passeth through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the river, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burnt; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. For I am the Lord thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour: I gave Egypt for thy ransom, Ethiopia and Sheba for thee. Since thou wast precious in my sight, thou hast been honourable, and I have loved thee: therefore will I give men for thee, and people for thy life. Fear not; for I am with thee: I will bring thy seed from the east, and gather thee from the west; I will say to the north, give up; and to the south, keep not back: bring my sons from far, and my daughters from the ends of the earth; even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I formed him; yea, I have made him."
It will never be in the compass of my power (because I am not inspired) to set forth, in so many words, the doctrine I entertain, which is set forth here. Here we have it emphatically declared that God's heart and affections are for that people, and that he has redeemed them. The doctrine of redemption is emphatically taught here; he has saved all of those people. My object, in dwelling upon this, is to show how that the doctrine of choice and redemption precisely fit together, and that the whole of the inspired writers could have reference to no other than the Church of God, in this particular. Forty-fourth chapter of Isaiah, first and second verses: "Yet now hear, Oh Jacob, my servant; and Israel, whom I have chosen: thus saith the Lord that made thee, and formed thee from the womb, which will help thee; fear not, Oh Jacob my servant; and thou, Jesurun, whom I have chosen."
Here again we have the doctrine of election and of choice, set forth. Jehovah declares that this is a sovereign act of his, and what he has done in connection with that act of choice is ultimately to save that people, as our proposition presents; for this is what we intend to show. I will now give you a quotation, without chapter or verse, it is this: "This people I have formed for myself, and they shall show forth my praise." Connect that language with what we have just read, and I ask you this question: If you can be persuaded to believe that there can be any possibility of failure in the salvation of that people, you can not, unless it can be made to appear that God will change, with all these repeated promises of his divine affection of his intention of mercy toward them; I ask you, can you possibly believe that God will fail to carry out what he has said he will do?
I propose now, to introduce the twenty-first and twenty-second verse of Isaiah 44: "Remember these, Oh Jacob and Israel; for thou art my servant: I have formed thee; thou art my servant: Oh Israel, thou shalt not be forgotten of me. I have blotted out, as a thick cloud, thy transgressions, and, as a cloud, thy sins: return unto me; for I have redeemed thee."
You will notice the doctrine of atonement is here declared; it is what he had done, not what he will do, by-and-by, but what he has emphatically done; that is to say, he has blotted out, as a cloud, their sins; as a thick cloud their transgressions; and in view of that important truth, he calls upon them, he calls upon the kings of the earth to shout and give praise to the name of God, for he has redeemed Jacob, and glorified himself in Israel. It will not do to say, that these prophecies are all confined to the land of Judea, for it is declared in the New Testament that they are not all Israel, which are of Israel. We take it for granted, that this is the Church of God, in type. So far as the name of Jacob and Israel is concerned, it represents the livings in Jerusalem--the family of them that were chosen, before the world was.
I will quote from the forty-fifth chapter of Isaiah verses 5-7: "That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none besides me: I am the Lord and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness; I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things."
Now my object, in that quotation, is to show this fact, that Jehovah is sovereign, that whatever his divine mind intends to accomplish, he does. He presents the idea of his sovereignty here, not only that he loves Jacob, and that he has redeemed Israel, but that at the same time he forms darkness and creates light, makes peace and creates evil.
A word of explanation here. I do not suppose that the word evil here means sin. I suppose that every plague and affliction, sent upon mankind, are evils; and allow me to add the present distracted state of our country is an evil; but the question is this, is there sin in it?
Now, I do not intend to convey the idea that God is the author of sin; but that divers afflictions, such as pain and death, come from the hand of God. We will now read from the seventeenth verse of the same chapter: "But Israel shall be saved in the Lord with an everlasting salvation: ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded, world without end." In these words we have the matter settled beyond all possibility of dispute. You will be apt to notice, that in the quotation are some names mentioned, you will find in these words: "Israel shall be saved." It would seem that we might let the whole matter rest here, if it be admitted that Israel means the Church of God. If we admit that Israel meant the people of God, then we have the matter settled, that Israel shall be, not may be saved. Perhaps, my brother will say, Mr. Hume, you have not given it all, because you did not say, anything about the seed of Israel. We have it said, however, that Israel shall be saved. Well, notice the twenty-fifth verse of the same chapter, you will find these words: "In the Lord shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory." Not that it shall so apply to them that they may in course of time be led to rejoice, but it says they shall glory in the Lord. Now see sixty-first chapter of Isaiah and ninth verse: "And their seed shall be known among the gentiles, and their offspring among the people: all that see them, shall acknowledge them; that they are the seed which the Lord hath blessed."
We have it here distinctly stated that in regard to this family, even the gentiles themselves shall be compelled to believe that they are the seed that the Lord hath blessed. There is no doubting this matter--here is a family, who did not believe, but who are compelled to believe that these are the people, whom the Lord hath blessed.
I now make a requisition. I desire in my heart that every child of God here, I care not what your names are, if you believe on Jesus Christ, I ask you to read that chapter--the sixty-second of Isaiah. I will simply read the first three verses: "For Zion's sake will I not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem's sake will I not rest until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness, and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth; and the gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory, and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall name. Thou shalt also be a crown of glory in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of thy God." We discover, here, that our Heavenly Father thinks more of this family than of any other--that his divine affection is centered upon them. In the 63d chapter of Isaiah, we have a beautiful contrast to the family presented the other day, the one that doeth evil continually. See 8th and 9th verses: "For he said, surely they are my people--children that will not lie; so he was their Saviour. In all their afflictions he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them; in his love and in his pity he redeemed them, and he bare them and carried them through all the days of old." Here, you see, the doctrine of redemption is taught, and you notice that not only is this God's peculiar people, but also that they are redeemed, for in his love and pity he hath redeemed them--not that he will do it, if they will do their part, but it is already done. I ask, now, to make a quotation that I have not noted. Daniel says: "Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most holy." "After sixty-two weeks shall Messiah be cut off;" not for himself, but for this people to whom he is making reconciliation.
Now, turn to Jeremiah xxi, 3: "The Lord hath appeared unto me, saying: yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love; therefore, with loving kindness have I drawn thee." I ask you, my friends, who these people are that he has loved with an everlasting love; if you say it is the race, I ask, how can God love them in hell? But, hark! says the gentlemen, everlasting means only a little time. I understand the term everlasting to extend before time and after time. If this be correct, we have this important fact presented, that God loves these people before time and beyond time, consequently his loving kindness is never at an end. Again, see the 32d and 38th to 41st verses of Jer. "And they shall be my people and I will be their God. And I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear me forever, for the good of them and of their children after them. And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them to do them good, but I will put my fear in their hearts that they shall not depart from me; yea, I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will plant them in this land assuredly, with my whole heart and with my whole soul." Here we have the doctrine reaffirmed, that he never intends this people to depart from him. Here, then, the last item in my proposition is proved, that the final perseverance of the saints is true, unless God withdraws his love on some occasion from the same individuals. I Chronicles xvi, 13: "Oh ye seed of Israel, his servant; ye children of Jacob, his chosen ones." His chosen ones; his elect ones--my proposition says the elect of God or Church of Christ, and in this verse that chosen family is presented; consequently my proposition is fully maintained, not only from this verse, but from all the others I have introduced. Again, Psalm xxxiii, 12: "Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance." Is there no confirmation in that? The people whom he hath chosen--elected for his own inheritance; the people that he delights to own; the people that he loves to bless, and that he intends to save, as is said in Isaiah, with an everlasting love. I shall, perhaps, make proof out of some passages you would not expect me to introduce. Matt. xxiv, 22-24: "And except those days should be shortened, there would be no flesh saved, but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened. For there shall arise false Christs and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." Who are the elect? The family we have presented--Israel. Matt. xxiv, 31, says: "And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other." As this is to be read, I shall not take up much time in talking upon the texts. Mark x, 45: "For even the son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many." Here, permit me to remark, that we have had considerable argument about the meaning of the word all. I propose to show that the term "many," used in this passage, does not ALL. He gives his life a ransom, not for all but for many--not for everybody, but for some portion, that is the idea I get from it as I make the quotation. See Mark xiii, 20, 22 and 27. [As the language of these three verses has just been given in the quotation from Matt. xxiv, they are not inserted. The reader is referred to them.--REPORTER.] I argue that it is impossible not to see that the doctrine of election and redemption is taught here. Here you see, for the sake of the elect, those days shall be shortened; and if it were possible deceivers should deceive the very elect, which is as much as to say it is not possible to do so. The idea of its being impossible is clearly presented here. We will now turn to Luke xix, 10. This has been read once before, but I want it in this place; it reads: "For the son of man has come to seek and save that which was lost." With a simple question, I will pass along. It is, do you believe, dear, dying friends, that the work is done? One of two things you must admit, either the Saviour did do the work, or he did not. If he did do it, our position is maintained. If he did not, then the work is not yet done, and he comes and dies no more, and there remaineth no more sacrifice for sin. If the son of man did save that which was lost, we take it for granted that the lost means the people of Israel, the people whom God loves with an everlasting love. Again, John x, 11: "I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd giveth his life for his sheep." Also, the 15th verse: "As the father knoweth me, even so know I the father, and I lay down my life for the sheep." I ask you, have I not proved special atonement, unless you can make it appear that everybody are sheep? Christ says positively that he lays down his life for his sheep. Oh, but, says our worthy brother, Christ says, "other sheep have I." Yes, but he don't say other goats have I. Who are these other sheep? God's family among the gentiles. "They also must I bring, and they shall (not that they will, but they shall) hear my voice, and there shall be one fold and one shepherd."
I will introduce another text upon the doctrine of election--John xiii, 18: "I speak not of you all; I know whom I have chosen: but that the scripture may be fulfilled, He that eateth bread with me hath lifted up his heel against me." Here the Saviour says, I did not choose you all, or I am not speaking to you all; I know whom I have elected. John xv, 16: "Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that you should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain; that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you." I understand Elder Stinson to say, that the election or salvation of the sinner depends upon the sinner; but Jesus says, you have not chosen me, but I have elected or chosen you; not only chosen you, but ordained you. What for? That ye may go and bring forth fruit, that shall remain. Here is the final perseverance of the saints; not only perseverance, but whatsoever you shall ask in my name, he will give it you. John xv, 19: "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 world, therefore the world hateth you."
If I was to take the course that Christ took, or say what he said, I should get a worse name than I have now. Hear what he says in John xvii, 9: "I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou givest me; for they are thine." What is the language? "I pray not for them; I pray not for the world." Did Christ die for the world, and then refuse to pray for it? Will Christ suffer for the world, and then refuse to pray for the world? I pray not for the world, but for those that thou hast given me out of the world; those thou hast chosen; those thou hast elected out of the world; they were thine, and thou hast given them to me. Acts xiii, 48: "And when the gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed." I suppose the reason why the rest did not believe, was because they were not ordained to eternal life; for the text says as many as were ordained believed. Acts xx, 28: "Take heed, therefore, unto yourselves, and to all the flock over which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the Church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood." I am well aware of the play that my worthy brother will make over the proposition. He will not deny anything I have advanced; but his whole strength will be employed to show you I have failed to find the word ONLY in the Bible, in this connection. I admit the word is not there; but is the doctrine there? That's the question. Could any language be clearer? Take heed unto yourselves to feed the Church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood, etc. I reckon that Israel shall be saved, and all of his seed shall be justified. Read Romans iv, 25: "Who was delivered for our offenses, and was raised again for our justification." Here we have the matter distinctly settled in regard to what is to be done by the death of Christ. It is so clear that the honest mind can not reject the evidence. The apostle here says he was delivered for our offenses, and raised again for our justification. If this means the race, Christ was not only delivered for the redemption of that race, and if they are justified, heaven is their home--the home of all. (Time expired.)
STINSON'S FIRST REPLY
ON HUME'S FIRST PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen:--I rise before you to take the negative of the proposition presented for discussion, which makes it my duty to follow the affirmant as far as I understand the evidence and arguments to apply to the subject in question. I regard it as my privilege to determine whether all the scriptures he introduces are relevant to the subject; therefore, though I may not notice all, I will endeavor to pay my respects to them as far as I can. We always find a possibility of different minds understanding the proposition itself differently. Elder Hume and I took pains to remove this difficulty, and strove to have each proposition so definite that we would have no caviling over the meaning of the proposition when we appear in debate. Elder Hume seems to start out by giving an interpretation of the proposition as meaning that the elect of God or Church of Christ was chosen in him--was chosen in him before the foundation of the world! Choice implies more objects than one. Then, if God, according to our brother, made choice, there must have been others before a choice could be made. The selection of a part or choice also implies not only the existence of two objects, between which the choice is made, but it implies the rejection of the one of these objects. We, therefore, approach the proposition with the understanding that, before the world was, God takes up the human race, which he intends to create. And what does he do? he chooses a part of the race, and makes them heirs of salvation; the balance he refuses or does not elect. I assert here, if the premises be correct, it renders the salvation of a part certain. Now, I ask, according to the language of the proposition, does it not make the salvation of the rest not only not certain, but positively impossible. My Brother Hume says he is not a Calvinist. I do not call him a Calvinist, but I say that he is responsible for the true meaning of the proposition, both as expressed and implied in the text. While he is not a Calvinist, while he repudiates many things that Calvin taught, yet this proposition is one of Calvin's favorite articles of faith.
It was one of St. Augustine's favorite articles of faith, in the fourth century. And neither of these learned men have ever attempted to evade the responsibility of reprobation following in connection with election; so far from it, they positively affirmed the doctrine fearlessly. Does the elder intend today to try to fix it upon the minds of the audience, that the choice of one was not the rejection of the other; and that the certainty of the salvation of the one has not made certain the impossibility of the salvation of the other? And as man must be either condemned or saved, does he mean to say their condemnation must not be rendered certain, by choosing others and leaving them? You see I appear before you in a new dress, to oppose this doctrine of election and reprobation. I defy my brother, in the use of the English language, to show that the one is not inferred from the other. This is inferred also from the incorporation of the phrase, "Christ died for the elect;" and add to this, that there is no other name under heaven, whereby men can be saved. You see, then, the balance of the race are eternally excluded from the economy of redemption, and that, too, before they had an existence in the world. This is the doctrine which we have to oppose, and this is the doctrine which he has to prove. He sets out to sustain his position, occupying about two thirds of his speech in quotations from the Old Testament, under the old dispensation. I might apply the rule he leveled on me, and make a wholesale disposal of his evidence from that source. When I quoted the Old Testament, to prove that man might choose eternal life or death, he told us that spiritual life or eternal death was not known under the language of that dispensation. If I would apply his rule, it would at once exclude every text he has introduced from that source; but I will not take that advantage. I believe that when I quoted my scriptures, they were applicable to my proposition; therefore, as a gentleman and a Christian, I will not be governed by any course he might pursue against me, but by the desire of being an honorable opponent to him. Had he consulted with me about the Jews being the peculiar people of God, I could have relieved him a little. I had some quotations in my mind that I believed would have made the matter stronger than any he has introduced. I would have given him the one that says, the Jews are God's vineyard, and that he had bought them and ransomed them; nay, more, that he recognizes them as being his wife. He represents himself as being their husband--though he did not bring these forward.
Now, the question is, whether these prophecies had reference to the Jewish family, or whether they had reference to the "Church of God in the world." I would pledge myself to show, but I can't show it now, that all the good that was promised to them was done for that nation, either temporarily or spiritually. I could have helped him a little more upon this point; I would not only have admitted the covenant with regard to God's engaging to take care of the Jews, but I would have admitted that the covenant was made with Abraham four hundred and thirty years before the giving of the law to Moses. God entered into this covenant with Abraham, and promised him in it, that in him and in his seed, should all the elect be blessed. No, that is not the way it reads, but to make his argument good, it ought to read that way. But, mark, "In thee and thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed." Not all the families of the elect.
Well, now, who did God allude to in the passage? My opponent has tried to convey the idea that it was the elect or Church of God, the chosen. Paul says of this covenant, not of seeds, as many, but all thy seed, and that seed was Christ. "In thee and in thy seed, shall all the families of the earth be blessed."
Paul says of these people: "They all (mark the word all) were under a cloud; they all eat of God's manna; they all drank of the spiritual rock, and that rock was Christ." If my brother intends to show, or try to show that a part of this family was made up of heathens, God says he took them from the nations of the earth and planted them in his vineyard. And then he says (mark it), "What could have been done more to my vineyard, that I have not done in it?" That is, for the Jewish nation.
Let him separate it if he can; let him show us that it was any but the Jewish nation, and for them God claimed to have done all that could be done, consistent with his character of holiness and their condition as moral agents. Well, what is the result? When he looked for them to bring forth grapes, they brought forth wild grapes. If he claims that means the elect, he is bound to admit that the elect brought forth wild grapes; if he admits it meant the nation, his interpretation necessarily fails. We can not take up and examine all his proofs; we will admit, some of them alluded to the coming of Christ. All those scriptures that are prophecies of the coming of Christ, I will take the liberty of passing over, without saying much upon them.
Elder Hume comes into the New Testament, and refers to Mat. xxiv, where Christ is speaking of the destruction of Jerusalem. He finds the word elect. The same word is used by the Apostle Paul, when he says, that God determined a remnant to be saved of that nation. What for? that their name might not be blotted out, that they might not be able to break the golden chain or link, that in after days would show the old dispensation was a kind of school-master to introduce the new one? God determined that neither men nor devils should be able to break this link, therefore a remnant was to be saved, according to election. A remnant of who?
Allow me to say, without any levity, a remnant of the elect was saved; because the Jews were God's elect. A remnant of God's elect was saved; therefore, if the Jewish nation was God's elect, then we find only a remnant of them saved. When I quoted the language of Christ, "How often would I have gathered you as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings," etc., he took that bold stand that he had completely demolished my views by introducing one of his ideas on chickenology, with reference to the chickens being outside of the hen. Elder Hume said he referred to the national privileges of the Jews, and he was willing to restore them to them, but they were not willing for it to be done.
I say that he meant precisely the reverse of this. So far as spiritual things were concerned, he had been willing to gather them together as a hen doth gather her chickens, but they would not. I therefore lay this down as a fixed fact, which I will not suffer to be removed, that some were lost for whom Christ died, as taught here. Mark x, 45. It was on this passage that he undertook to play upon the word many, and rather made it a matter of boast that I had used it in connection with general atonement, and that it did not always mean the race. This brings us back upon our old field. By the sin or disobedience of one, many were made sinners; but by the obedience of one, shall many be made righteous? My brother has taken the ground that they were made righteous before. My reason for introducing this word, is to show that its meaning is to be understood by its connection. I contend that the word many, in connection with the fall, means the same as the word many, in connection with the atonement. If he can show that it does not, I hope he will do it. If they mean the same thing in that connection, then Jesus meant the same thing in the text he has given us. Reference to Luke xix, 10, "Come to seek and save that which was lost." My brother takes a strong position on this text. I do not remember having used it before, but I know he used it. When he used it, he dwelt on God's power, and said, "Will he not do it? Will he not save that which was lost?" What did he mean by it? I understood one of two things--one of which he did not intend to teach--that only a part was lost, that therefore he came to seek and save that part, and did it; or else, all were lost, and therefore he came to seek and save ALL, and did it; hence, universalism is a matter of course.
Let us look at this idea. First, if only a part were lost, and he came to seek that part, where, in good faith, will he put the part of the human family not lost? If he came to seek only that part which was lost, then, to make good sense of his system, he did it. Then where are we to seek for the condition of that part of the human race that he did not come to seek and save? The only conclusion that can be derived from it, is that if there is a part of the human race that Christ did not come to save, then, in the estimation of Christ himself, they never were lost. To use his own language, has he done it? John x, 12.
Here we come to the sheep. Brother Hume yesterday thought I was rather hard on those poor sheep. He told us that he had called my attention to them, and that I would not even notice them. I am falling in love with him a little more every day for the credit he has given me. He said the reason why I did not notice them, was that I either had not time, or I was afraid of it. I claim his interpretation of my reason as most liberal. But as he has given the passage again, I must follow him. "My sheep hear my voice." I wish to ask this question: were they sheep before they heard his voice and followed him? or was it because they heard his voice and followed him that he acknowledges them to be his sheep? I understand him to say that they were his sheep because they heard his voice and followed him, and that they were not his sheep previous to this. How does this look? Jesus asserts plainly that his sheep know him. I quote from John x, 14: "I am the good shepherd and know my sheep, and am known of mine." I repeat, they became his sheep by hearing and then believing and obeying him, and by faith they became the people of God.
But what say the scriptures? "By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye love one another." Let us put in the word sheep instead of disciples. Love, then, is the strongest evidence the Bible gives of our being sheep. Again, Jesus says, "If any man will be my disciple (my sheep), let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me." Mark, my quotation says Jesus was known of his sheep--they had denied themselves, taken up their cross and followed him--they knew him by faith in the covenant; therefore they were his sheep. But my brother says I would reply that he had other sheep. I did not intend to use it, as I thought he had anticipated me. We may allude to the Syraphonecian woman, of whom Jesus said her faith was great. He had already made disciples in Samaria, and they knew him, and they were his sheep in the strict sense of the term. We have now got these sheep in the pen, and we will let them stay till our friend rustles them up again.
John xv, 16-17. That passage alludes to Jesus choosing the apostles. Brother Hume will not deny this. He (Jesus) says, "Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you;" not them, the whole elect, but I have you, and not you me. What does it mean? That he had selected these twelve to be the pillars of the New Jerusalem. Upon the twelve patriarchs we might say he founded the covenant of the Jewish economy. He elects the twelve that they may be the pillars of the new covenant. He prayed for them, and told Peter that he prayed that his faith should not fail him.
Brother Hume tells us he did not pray for the world; this he brought in as indirect evidence that he did not die for it. In John xvii, 20: he says: "Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word." Let Paul explain this difficulty: "But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling-block, and unto the Greeks foolishness; but unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and wisdom of God." To them that believe--every one in the whole world, in all ages, that believes in Jesus Christ, become at once a subject of that blessed prayer. Then it did not only mean those he had chosen--the twelve, nor the seventy--but it reached down from age to age, and every child of God today, that has become such by faith, claims, and may claim, an interest in that blessed prayer of Christ. Acts xiii, 43: Here is a text which I thought was from his most powerful battery. He uses this with a great deal of (I was about to say pride, but I will not, for Elder Hume is not proud); but he uses it as if he expected finally to succeed by showing that as many as were ordained to eternal life, believed. I would say, according to my view, the thing is out here. If all believed that were ordained, how would he save anybody else, if these were gentiles? and Christ demonstrated that the gentiles continued to believe, continued to come to Christ. I will not give my own poor opinion upon this passage. I quote the decision of wise men, who have examined it in the original language. I do not say positively it is right, but they say it means that as many as were ordained to eternal life at that time, believed; then, if this is the right view of it, there must be another ordination to make room for the rest.
I have now noticed some of his most important quotations, and I ask you, has he proved, from any one text, that a definite number, that a church, that a congregation, or that the Church of God, as he calls it, was chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world? Has he showed, even indirectly, that Christ died for them only? He saw the difficulty he had placed himself in by the language of his proposition, and he told us he was not going to be able to prove that there was positively anybody that Christ did not die for.
[Hume--You misunderstood me, I simply admitted I could not find the word "only" in the scriptures.]
I suppose he does not intend to try to prove from the word of God, that there is any fallen son or daughter of Adam for whom Christ did not die, and I shall claim, therefore, that up to the present point his proposition is not established. He said he would bring in his proofs collectively, that some would prove that the Church of God was chosen in him before the foundation of the world, some would prove that Christ died for the elect, some would prove that none would be saved but those that Christ died for. Has he satisfied you on any one of these points? He may have brought only his weakest texts. Logic makes it sensible to conclude that he has only put these out as feelers, merely to lead us to waste our strength in controverting that which he considered might not be directly at issue. Permit me to say that I have, during the three days we have been here, been trying to establish the theological theory of a general atonement, of the moral agency of man, freedom of the will, and conditional salvation; and I remark that every text that proves these three propositions true, proves his proposition false. He said that one of us must be wrong, that we could not both be right. And I will tell you, friends, we have not met to investigate this question for mastery, we have not come here to play with the people, but we are old men, who have become established in opposite Bible opinions, and we have come as men resting our salvation, and the salvation of others, upon the gospel (this is true, so far as I am concerned, for I believe in instrumentalities); and, consequently, I feel deeply anxious lest I might give a wrong theory, which might result in the damnation of a sinner who might otherwise be saved. I feel responsible to God for every word I utter on this occasion. I have now feebly presented one side of the question. I told you in my first speech that the imperfection which attaches itself to humanity precluded the possibility of my being able to present a perfect system of theology, but I anticipated it would be subject to many imperfections. In closing, I contend that Brother Hume has admitted many of the most important points I contended for, while others he has denied; but, according to my understanding, he has failed to sustain his position, and I take it upon myself to say that Christ did die for the race of man. I have employed the strongest terms known in the English language to enforce this idea. I have inquired of men, of learned men, who have told me that there were no stronger terms or words than those used in the word of God, to prove that Christ made a general atonement. My hour is just about up. Brother Hume will address you next, and I will follow him. We are going to fight over this question for two more speeches, after which it will be laid aside for future generations, and the present, to read at their leisure. In attempting to follow him, I will give a fair and candid interpretation to the scriptures he introduces to prove his position, and I will, without being impudent, and in all fairness, if he introduces a text that does bear upon the subject, admit it. He has traveled from Deuteronomy to Malachi, but has failed to establish his proposition. (Time expired.)
HUME'S SECOND ADDRESS,
ON HIS FIRST PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen:--I have risen before you for the purpose of prosecuting the discussion of the proposition read this morning, and as our time is very short, I must necessarily be brief. I shall fail to a great extent of introducing the amount of proof which I intended to bring forward at the commencement of this discussion. If I have made no mistake in counting, in my hour's speech, I introduced seventy-five passages of scripture, to prove the doctrines of election, of choice, the doctrine of atonement, and the final perseverance of the saints. I now propose to introduce a few more on the subject of choice, and a few more on the atonement. I shall take such course my mind may suggest; then I will, if time permits, make some remarks in answer to our friend's discourse; but I desire first to get in my proof. You remember that he said, no doubt I had reserved some passages of scripture that bore more directly upon the point, and upon which I more directly relied for my proof; he anticipated me correctly. I now ask your attention to 2 Timothy i, 9: "Who hath saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our own works, but according to his own purpose and grace which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began." That is right close, almost the language of the proposition. If my brother undertakes to reply to that, and gives this explanation, that Paul and Timothy were chosen in Christ, then I take this ground, that whatever was necessary to secure the salvation of Paul and Timothy, was equally necessary to secure the salvation of other sinners. Could it be possible that Paul and Timothy were so much worse than this, that they had to have grace given them before the world began, and to no others? I ask, if they were not chosen, how was grace given them before the world began?
Turn to Ephesians i, 1-4: "Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus; grace be to you, and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ, according as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy, and without blame before him in love."
What does my proposition say? That the "elect or Church of Christ was chosen in him before the foundation of the world." How much does this last quotation lack of its being not only the doctrine, but the very language of our proposition? The apostle here thus declares, the saints, the Ephesians, the faithful in Christ were chosen of God in Christ, before the foundation of the world. I ask, were these God's elect? If that be so, the proposition is settled beyond a possibility of doubt; for these people, whether the church or not the church, were chosen of God in Christ, before the world began. I will anticipate an objection to my explanation of this passage and reply to it. I have no doubt but it will be assumed, as has been done before, that this has special reference to the apostles, and can not possibly be made to apply elsewhere. I remark, it is consistent with common sense, that we can bring no more out of a conclusion of a matter than is in the premises; if we bring matter out which is not in the premises, it is a violation of sound philosophy. Here is Paul the apostle, the saints of Ephesus, the faithful in Christ Jesus, and these are they which are chosen in Christ, before the foundation of the world. Further, if our brother should say this refers to the Jews, allow me to tell you that the Church at Ephesus was composed of gentile believers, and these gentile believers were embraced with the chosen of God in Christ, before the foundation of the world.
One more quotation, and I have done on that particular point. I quote from Rev. xvii, 14: "These shall make war with the Lamb and the Lamb shall overcome them; for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and they that are with him, are called, and chosen and faithful." In order to ascertain when they were chosen, turn back to Ephesians i, where the apostle says they were chosen before the foundation of the world. I will leave that part of the subject for the congregation to determine--whether "choice" has been proved as laid down in the proposition, while I proceed to notice the doctrine of atonement. In order to do this, we must learn in a theological point of view what is meant by atonement. Turn, if you please, to Leviticus xvi, 11, 24, 27, 30, 34: "And Aaron shall bring the bullock of the sin-offering which is for himself, and shall make an atonement for himself, and for his house, and shall kill the bullock of the sin-offering, which is for himself."
I would just ask my respected brother, whether they can find a text in God's word that authorizes them to believe that anybody else were included under that dispensation than Israel? Now the 30th verse: "For on that day shall the priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that ye may be clean from all your sins before the Lord." We discover the object in that atonement was to cleanse the people or remove their sins for one year. This kind of an atonement had to be made every year. This was God's order to the high priest, in regard to the making that atonement special for Israel. I believe there were seven nations lived round about Israel. Of these seven nations that lived about Israel, there were none of them included, for there was no offering made for them, nor for any other character under heaven, but Israel. We told you in our first speech, that the Lord saved Israel, and said that the seed of Israel should be justified; this atonement is then made for Israel.
We will now read the 34th verse: "And this shall be an everlasting statute unto you, to make an atonement for the children of Israel, for all their sins, once a year. And he did as the Lord commanded Moses."
There is the idea I am arguing for--"And he did as the Lord commanded Moses." You see the Lord expected this atonement for the sins of Israel, and the period of cleansing was for one year. And when the atonement had been made, there was no remembrance of sin for that year. I might refer you to Leviticus xxiii, 27, 28, but they are similar to the above. Exodus xii, 16; Hebrews viii, 17, 21, all teach the same thing--the duty of the high priest to offer once a year an atonement for sin for Israel. Isaiah xxxv, 10: "And the ransomed of the Lord shall return and come to Zion, with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads; they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away." What is the difference between ransomed and redeemed; what is the difference between redeemed and atoned for? Here we have the testimony, that whoever they be, no matter what their names, nor where they are, the ransomed of the Lord shall return and come to Zion, and they shall obtain joy and gladness. Does the Lord talk thus? He does. And now, I ask you, my dear, dying congregation, do you believe God will be disappointed? If only a part of the ransomed of God return, then the language of God must fail; but he says emphatically, the ransomed of the Lord shall return.
I now ask you to notice the thirteenth chapter of Hosea, fourteen verse: "I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death: Oh death, I will be thy plagues; Oh grave, I will be thy destruction: repentance shall be hid from mine eyes." I notice this passage, to prove the final results of this redemption can not fail; and that a failure of the benefits growing out of this redemption can not possibly take place. I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death, and the destruction of the grave. Matt. i, 21: "And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins." That means more than the Adamic sin, doesn't it? The strength of the argument on the other side has been that Christ's mission was to redeem from the Adamic sin; here the angel says, he shall save his people from their sins--sins, in the plural. We understand that they are saved from their sins. A manifestation of that fact I would regard as sufficient to lead the sinner to rejoice in its truth. Turn to Matt. xxvi, 26, 27, and 28: "And, as they were eating, Jesus took the bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said: take, eat; this is my body: and he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, drink ye all of it: for this is my blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins." We had some talk about the word many, before dinner. I told the people that many folks, in the town where I live, had the small-pox, but did I mean that they all had the small-pox? I told the people that many houses were blown down by the storm, but were they all blown down? that many stars fell from heaven, but did I mean that they all fell? Does any man understand the term many to mean all? Here is the language our Saviour used when his blood was represented by the wine, and his body by the bread: he tells us that the blood was shed for many for the remission of sins. I would just make this remark, and pass along: If this was made for the race, the word many means the race. If the sins of the race were remitted, then nothing can keep them out of heaven. Mark x, 45: "For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many." I think this has been noticed, and I will pass on. Mark xiv, 24, records the same on the occasion of the supper: "And he said unto them, this is my blood of the New Testament, which is shed for many." All these go to prove the doctrine of atonement, made by Christ for the remission of sins. Mark, the idea of an atonement was made, and if the race was redeemed by it, then Universalism is true; for if the race are redeemed, I repeat, there is no condemnation. Turn to Heb. ii, 10 and 17: "For it became him, for whom all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons into glory, to make the Captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings." "Wherefore in all things it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people." I will refer now to Heb. ix, 9. ("Which was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect as pertaining to the conscience.") But first we will read the twelfth verse: "Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood, he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us." There the apostle tells us that by his blood, not by any other blood, but that by his blood, that he entered once into the holy place, and by that entering has obtained eternal redemption for us. See fourteenth verse of Heb. ix: "How much more shall the blood of Christ, who, through the eternal spirit, offered himself without spot to God, to purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God." You see the object and design of that atonement is to effect a complete salvation of that family; every line here goes directly to sustain this point. We will refer now to first Epistle of John ii, 2: I make this quotation to show you positively, and beyond all doubt, that the interpretation we have had of Christ's mission (to redeem us from the claims of the Adamic law) is not the interpretation of the Bible--it reads thus: "And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world." Let us discuss as much as we may, in regard to the meaning of the term in the propitiation, the fact is established that it was sins, not one sin for which he died; that it is sins that are washed away, not one sin. This being the fact, we have the doctrine appropriately presented, that without shedding of blood there can be no remission of sins. Christ by that one effort, has perfected them that are sanctified. Jude says, first verse: "Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called."
Now, I will give some little attention to my friend's argument. In his other speech he told us that the gospel is the power of God to every one that believeth. No man believes that stronger than I; but mark, it doesn't say to unbelievers. Hence, before the gospel can be the power of God to a man, he must be a believer. He made wonderful work about my quotation: "As many as were ordained to eternal life were redeemed." I consider that a great principle is involved here. Our brother told us of some great men who had examined this, and they said it would be proper to say, that those who believed then, or at that time, were ordained to eternal life; I have no doubt he would like to have it read that way, but it won't read that way, but just the other way: As many as were ordained to eternal life, believed. (Time expired.)
STINSON'S SECOND REPLY
ON THE FIRST PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen: I rise without a single argument to reply to, except a few points in connection with some of the quotations. Our brother told us I had anticipated him correctly when I said I supposed he was keeping back some of his strongest points for another discourse. If he has none stronger, however, than those he has given us in his last speech, we think there will be but little trouble in answering them. The first quotation which I have marked, is from Ephesians i, 1. I hope you will bear in mind the interpretation he has given of that chapter. When I am done you will discover how one little word will change the meaning of a whole chapter. Putting in or leaving out a word, however small, enables us to prove almost anything. But let me here quote one text that may stand before Brother Hume and myself, for I bow to it submissively. Peter says: "Our beloved Paul wrote things hard to be understood." I bow to the truth of that. But he tells us more than that, that some by failing to give them their right interpretation, have "wrested" the scriptures to their own destruction.
[Hume.--Yes, sir, that's so.]
I make this remark to show that a different meaning may be derived from a more complete reading of the first chapter of Ephesians. If it takes up the whole of my time to read that chapter, I shall consider I have not spent it in vain. [At this point Elder Stinson read from the first to the twelfth verse. These verses are omitted in the report, the reader is referred to them.] Now, let us notice the 12th, 13th and 14th verses: "That we should be to the praise of his glory who first trusted in Christ, in whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy spirit of promise, which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory." Now, my friends, notice the point, "in whom also ye trusted after that ye heard the word of truth." I ask my opponent, does Paul incorporate himself with these? There has been much said about faith, and the apostle says all men have not faith; but he was good enough to tell us how faith comes: "Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." In whom also ye trusted after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also ye then believed, and were sealed with the holy spirit of promise. My friends, does this look like eternal justification? Does it look as if they were sealed before the world was? Does it look as if the apostle was writing to a people who had been chosen and elected before the foundation of the world? He tells them plainly that after they heard the gospel and believed, they were then sealed with the holy spirit of promise. On the supposition that his position is correct, were they not chosen, elected, already made fast or sealed? If so, here is a people who had been sealed twice. Paul says to the Corinthians: "If any man be in Christ he is a new creature." If the elect were in Christ before the world was, and their salvation does not depend upon the exercise of faith, they were always Christians; hence, where is the necessity of becoming new creatures? My friend will, perhaps, explain this to our satisfaction. I wish to present this idea plainly to your minds. Paul sets out here by telling them of all the blessings that he, in connection with the Jewish converts, had received from God. After having expressed himself on this subject, he tells them that they, too, after they believed, after they heard, and believed, and trusted, obtained salvation and were sealed with the holy spirit of promise. So much for the first chapter of Ephesians. Our brother next brings up the fact before our minds, and this he has done in every speech he has made since the commencement of this discussion, that "atonement is made for the remission of sins." What advantage he expects to gain by pressing this idea, I am at a loss to know. I have never denied it. I have asserted from the start that the atonement had two objects. I had this incorporated in my proposition. One of these objects was to make satisfaction to the Adamic law, and the other was to offer salvation to the race from personal sin. I can not get him to discern the difference between satisfaction being made for Adam's sin, and propitiation being made for the sins of the world. I will quote another text to help him. It is from Paul to Timothy, if I be not mistaken, and reads thus: "Therefore, we both labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, especially of those that believe." I have not introduced this text before, but I thought just now it would fit admirably; and let my friend explain it away, if he can. Let him tell us that it did not mean, in any sense, that Christ is the Saviour of all men, especially of them that believe. He certainly will not understand that to mean the elect only. Suppose he brings in his rule of interpretation, it will make it read thus: "he is the Saviour of all the elect, and especially of the believing elect;" that is the way it would have to read in order to make sense of it, according to his interpretation of the scriptures he has introduced. He next quotes from Rev. xvii, 14: "They that are with him are called and chosen and faithful." Where does the foundation of that lie? Just close by the end of time. Could he have got Moses, or some other one away back yonder, to have brought up this in connection with the creation of the world, it would be a more plausible application; but the apostle lays the foundation of this occurrence away down the stream of time close to the end of the world. I endeavored to show, yesterday, that God chooses to save every believer; therefore, all who believe on to the end of the world, God will choose to save. He next goes on to speak about atonement, and tells us that it means freeing from sin. He gets us away back into the old dispensation, and tells us that when man has atoned--made an offering--he is free from sin, and yet he says he had to do this every year to free himself from sin, and that atonement referred to sins of the past. I now call upon him to show, in the Bible, where Christ limits the virtue of his atonement exclusively of things to come. He forgets that Paul says: On account of Christ's "righteousness he can be just and the justifier of him that believeth in Jesus." God can be just on account of Christ's death and justify him that believeth in Jesus. Here you see, the atonement has reference to the Adamic law, and frees the race from the guilt contracted without their agency. My quotation will stand as a bulwark, and as having sustained that point. After the guilt was removed, the guilt of the first transgression, in which man had no direct agency, except the first man; after that guilt is removed, then provision is made, according to the economy of redemption, for all people, in all ages and nations, by which the believer in Christ may be justified.
But to proceed. Admitting that every text he has quoted, meant what he said it meant: admitting that there were many elected in Christ Jesus, has he shown that all were; that the whole Church of God were? But there is a fatal point in his proposition, that Christ died exclusively for the elect. Has he sustained that? He has shown that Israel was redeemed; he proved that this morning, so far as the nation of Israel was concerned; he showed us that when Christ broke the bread, and told his disciples that it was the figure of his body, and the wine, the figure of his blood, that was shed for many. But did he prove that it was shed for all? Is it not a matter of astonishment that Christ should die for part of the race? On the supposition that his views are true; would it not have been as easy for the Saviour to have said: "This is my blood, shed for a part of the human race." Is it not remarkably strange, that he can not find, in a great book like the Bible, one text that says, only a part of the race. He concludes that the word many means only a part of the race. Then I ask, why was not the word incorporated in the text? If he could find one text of that kind, I would never have come here to deny its truth. I have read and prayed for the truth, but I have failed to find one text that says, there are some for whom he did not die.
Elder Hume has launched out, to establish this proposition; he has one more half hour to fix it up in; he may yet have his heaviest artillery behind; he may yet mass his battery, and thunder in a way that will make everything give way before him, but we shall see how it is done. Thank God, today, it is my privilege to reply to his last argument. Yesterday and the day before, clear on back to the commencement of this debate, I have never had the opportunity of replying to his last argument; but now it is changed. I could have introduced a great many texts of Scripture, which would have been in point, but I told you before that the scripture that proved a general atonement, disproved his position. I array them against him, I bring them to stand in opposition to this view. He has but a little while to do a great deal of work in. We have seen him fail to establish either of the first two features of his proposition. He has yet to prove that the elect were chosen before the foundation of the world; then he has to prove that Christ died for them only; he then has to prove that that part for whom he died will certainly be saved. Mark, the first two propositions must be proved before the third one can even be admissible; but having failed in the first two, what advantage will he have by quoting a thousand texts to prove that all that Christ died for will be saved, when he fails to tell us how many Christ did die for. I know his candor and honesty; but neither can change the word of God from its legitimate meaning, unless advantage be taken of the rules of interpretation. (Time expired.)
HUME'S THIRD ADDRESS,
ON HIS FIRST PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen:--Again I rise for the purpose of closing my affirmation, on the first proposition. If declamation was to be taken as evidence of my defeat, we have had abundance of it; and I have no doubt the stock will be increased, but I believe the Bible is the umpire in this discussion. Our brother seems to be very fearful of the Bible, more especially of those parts to which I invite his attention. I have not quite done yet. Ephesians v, 25, 26 and 27: "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word: that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish." If such language as this fails to maintain a proposition, it is because the Bible fails. Here is the very language of my proposition; presenting precisely whom he did die for, and what he intended them to do, that they should be presented to himself, a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or anything of the kind. We will now read a portion of the eighth chapter of Romans, beginning at the twenty-eighth verse; but first let me say that in this I propose to show two things; 1. God's peculiar people, as the object of his love. 2. That these people can not be lost. We will read: "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Sons, that he might be the first-born among many brethren. Moreover, whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that comdemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, for thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors, through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, 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 us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." My proposition says, that those for whom Christ died shall be eternally saved. What does the Divine writer say upon this subject? It appears that the apostle anticipated the objections that would be made; consequently, in the investigation of this subject, he has ransacked heaven, he has searched all the earth, and tells us that nothing under the domain of God is able to separate them from God's affection, neither things present nor things to come, heights nor depths, angels nor any other creature under heaven. Mark you, all these things can not separate them from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus, consequently their eternal salvation is secure. One text more from John: "My sheep hear my voice, they follow me. I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish." Is not that the language of my proposition; does it not carry us into eternity? They shall never perish, the reason is, my Father gave them me, and none shall take them away.
Now, refer to John v, 24, as conclusive evidence of the truth of my proposition in that verse. We have this language: "Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that heareth my word and believeth on him that sent me hath everlasting life and shall not come into condemnation, but is passed from death unto life." If they shall not come into condemnation, is not heaven their home? Turn to Isaiah liv, 17: "No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper, and every tongue that shall rise against thee thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord." Here, Jehovah is speaking of the final salvation and redemption. I say, if no weapon shall prosper against them, if they condemn every tongue, what is in the way? I say, if this passage does not prove their eternal salvation, then the Bible proves nothing.
I will notice our brother's rambling a little. I believe that I had just closed my remarks upon what he said, in regard to as many as believed were ordained to eternal life. The next thing I notice is this: he said, Mr. Hume's proposition is not sustained. I do not intend to say that about him; I will leave this matter to the congregation to determine it. I dare not risk myself to do this, therefore, I will just pass it over. Our friend told, again, that so deep were the consequences that would result from what he was doing, that some sinner might be condemned, who might otherwise have been saved. For my part, I have no power to condemn a sinner; I have no power to interfere; if my Jesus is their Saviour, he alone must bring condemnation. Again, he says, the learned have told him that he has employed the strongest language in maintaining the doctrine of the atonement, that it was possible for any man to employ. Well, if they have, they have not consulted me; they have not paid that attention to me that they have to him; but it matters nothing to me, if the Bible is against him. If my God says I am right, I know I am.
Now, about these sheep: Father Stinson told us that they were not his sheep, till after they heard his voice, and believed in Christ. If they were not Christ's sheep, will he tell us whose they were? I want to know.
[Elder Stinson was here understood to say, they were the children of wrath, when Hume continued.--Rep.]
I suppose, then, they were the opposite of sheep--goats. If you will read the account of the last, great day, you learn that Jesus will divide the sheep from the goats, and he will say to those sheep, "Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world." Mark the idea--did God prepare a kingdom for certain people, and then fail to bring them to the enjoyment of it? Such an idea is altogether unreasonable. Then we take the ground, the kingdom was prepared for the sheep, and God declares they shall enter it and enjoy it. We then had a strange idea presented to our minds. Our brother admitted that the twelve apostles were God's elect, the great pillar upon which God built his church. Admit that; over the way yonder, is a gang of goats, if they will come over into this kingdom, they may. Is it not strange that Jehovah would elect a foundation, and yet leave the materials of the building to come in at their own will? Would he make the foundation safe and secure, and leave the whole building suspended on contingencies? If God did lay the foundation, then we take the ground, he selected the materials, so that the foundation and materials formed a perfect building--that building is the Church of God.
And my dear brother said, the powers of hell could not prevail against it, so says Jesus Christ of that church: "I say unto thee, thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell can not prevail against it." Then, friends, we have it mighty nigh safe for eternity. I believe you might take a sheepskin and lap (wrap) up a goat in it, and you would not know the difference; but just as soon as you heard it bleat, you would know it was no sheep. There are a great many men in these days lapped (wrapped) up in goatskins. I am not alluding to anybody here; but to carry out the idea, thousands clothe themselves in sheepskins, but we ought to be cautious, and beware of dogs.
A word about what he said respecting Paul writing many things hard to be understood. And he remarked: "Some men wrested them to their own destruction." What did he mean? Simply, that they did not understand; consequently, that they did not apply them rightly. And we professed ministers ought to be very cautious, to be sure that we put them where the Lord Jesus Christ designed them to be.
I need a little eye-salve of divine grace, and I need it to see the point which he tried to make, in the first chapter of Ephesians; but to save my life, I can not see the point. He read nearly the whole of the chapter, objecting to my views, and when he was done, I could not tell what he believed about it. But there is one thing certain. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ; Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the will of God to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus; According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy, and without blame before him in love. Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.
Here they are, and I ask you if all the logic upon earth that every man has got, can you get anybody else in this connection, save Paul, the apostles, the saints in Ephesus, and the faithful in Christ, unless the scriptures are wrested?
We were told that the apostles were the first that trusted in Christ. I had really thought that Abraham, Issac and Jacob had done so before the apostles. And the idea is perfectly brand new to me, that the apostles were the first characters that trusted in Christ--so new, so contrary to the Bible, that I do not receive it. You can do just as you please.
But did you notice that our brother put in nearly the whole time on conditional salvation? Did you notice how many passages he explained of the seventy-five in my first speech, and nine in the last speech? Out of the whole number, he condescended to notice only seven. What can be the reason? He must surely think that my texts were not worthy of the notice of a gentleman of talent. But it is his duty to notice my scriptures, and endeavor to set them aside; if he can not do that, to acknowledge the truth of my proposition. I have shown you, my dear friends, from such a host of scripture evidence, and evidence that my brother will never notice, that the doctrine of election or God's choice is taught in the Bible. I have shown you that choice took place before the world began. He dare not deny it. I have shown you that the church had grace given them before the world began. I have shown you that Christ's blood was shed for the church by the expressions of the apostles. I then referred to Ephesians v, in which it is said: "Husbands love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it." Now, I ask you, does it not prove my proposition? I agreed to show you that the doctrine was taught there; and I ask you, do not these scriptures prove it? I agreed also to prove that the Divine Saviour gave his life for those people, and that they all would be saved eternally. If these scriptures have not convinced your mind, will you tell me when eternal life can end? The scripture says they shall never perish; then if they never perish, they will never die, but live eternally. Jesus says, I and my Father are one, and that none can get them out of his Father's hands. I ask you, my dear dying friends, for it may be the last time that you and I will ever meet on this side of eternity, to take the matter home with you, and examine it for yourselves; for, as I have said before, if the doctrine he has mentioned is right, I am wrong. How very important, then, that you examine these things, and see for yourselves.
I have told you that the mission of Christ was to save his people. There is not a single text I have introduced that talks about conditions. I have also shown that the Saviour himself did not teach universal atonement; but when he came, upon the most solemn occasion, to bear witness of what his blood was shed for, he tells them it was done for many, but in no case does he say it was done for all. We all admit that the word all will not do to rely upon, to found a system of salvation. We must take the meaning of the words from the connection in which they stand; and in this case, both in Matthew and Mark, he says that his blood was shed for many. Do you believe that he possessed an inexhaustible fountain of wisdom? If he did, then he knew now many would be benefitted by his death. Can you believe that Jesus died for a people of whom it is said that God had indignation forever? Can you believe that he died for the rich man in hell as well as Lazarus? If you can believe this, and if he failed in dying for one, he may have failed in dying for thousands. We maintain that he died for the church, and that this embraces every believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, of every denomination, and of no denomination. I believe there are thousands of these latter saved, who do not belong to any church among all others. So far as relates to the doctrines alluded to, are they sustained? I maintain that the proposition is fully taught in the Bible. My dear friends, if you are not willing to receive my account, my interpretation, then look for yourselves, pray for yourselves, investigate for yourselves, and may God help you to do so properly. (Time expired.)
STINSON'S THIRD REPLY
ON THE FIRST PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen:--I now rise to reply to Elder Hume. For his life he can not see my criticism on the first chapter of Ephesians. If there is any difference between my opponent and the view I expressed, my criticism is correct; but if there is no difference between the views, he is correct. He brought up the sheep again, and told us that they were his sheep before they heard his voice. The text says, "I know my sheep, and they know me." This, I consider, precludes the possibility of that knowledge, in the absence of becoming personally acquainted with the scripture. The only other text I noticed particularly is the 25th chapter of Matthew. He quotes from it, to prove that a kingdom was prepared for the sheep before the foundation of the world. This he tried to illustrate by goats having sheep skins on, but he says he doesn't mean me. I am much obliged to him; I do not suppose he meant anybody. I will only say the devil must be remarkably ignorant to put on sheep skins for the purpose of catching sheep; for that is as impossible as to draw down the throne of God. "Come ye, blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you, from the foundation of the world." Look at this--prepared for you from the foundation of the world! If the kingdom is prepared for you from the foundations of the world, when are you allowed to come into it? My brother scored me yesterday about conditional salvation. What does Christ say of it? "Because I was a stranger, and ye took me not in; I was hungry, and ye fed me not; I was naked, and ye clothed me not." Does not Jesus Christ in this recognize conditions? Are not these conditions that will come up in the judgment of God? What does he say to them? Does he tell those on his left hand that they were goats from the foundation of the world? Does he say to them, depart into everlasting fire because Christ never knew you; because you are not elected; because you have no lot in the economy of redemption through the atonement? No, no; he tells them to take their leave; for, says he, I was a-hungered, and ye fed me not; I was naked, and ye clothed me not; a stranger, and ye took me not in. Does he not show them something they might have done in life? But because they neglected to do it, it has become the ground of their condemnation forever.
So much for conditional salvation. But to make this doubly sure, we will quote from Revelations xxii, 14, "Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city." You discover here a chain of truth that never can be incorporated on the doctrine of election.
With reference to his remarks upon the point that all that Christ died for will be eternally saved, we have a few texts which have some reference to that point. Hebrews vi, 4-6, "For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame." I do not quote this to prove the doctrine of falling from grace. He has not left me the necessity of proving the possibility of falling from grace, because he has failed to show that Christ died for only a part. My object is to show that there is a possibility of some being lost who have once been righteous. 2 Peter ii, 1, "But there were false prophets among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction." Mark, "even denying the Lord that bought them." How did he purchase them? Was there any kind of commercial arrangement made by which they were bought, outside of the atonement? Here he says there will be false teachers among them in the church, "who will bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord who brought them." Here is a people who brought swift destruction upon themselves, who denied the Lord that bought them (I might add, bought them with his blood), and yet they bring themselves to swift destruction. One more quotation. Hebrews x, 26, "For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sin." Will my brother say that to sin willfully, after we had obtained a knowledge, is impossible? But here we see it is possible, and the apostle says it is impossible for him to be renewed, because they rejected the only sacrifice made for sin--there remaineth no more. But we will connect this with the language of Jesus Christ, where he says, "All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven to men, but the sin against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven, neither in this world nor in the world to come." Here we have it stated that the sin against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven them either in this world or in the world to come, and that those who commit this sin, whether elect or not, are in danger of eternal damnation.
In the tenth chapter of Romans, we have a contrast again between the Jew and the gentile. Here we meet my brother's quotations from the eighth, ninth and tenth chapters of Romans. I have not time to quote in full, but allow me to say, that it teaches, among other things, that the Jews were the true branches of the tree, but they were broken off, and the wild olives grafted in because of belief. He has taken the ground that if a man once belonged to him (the Lord), he belonged to him forever; but let God vindicate himself. He here says that the gentiles were the wild olives, and that he will call them his people that are not his people. My brother may make a compromise between his bold declarations and the declarations of God's word. I have alluded to this to show that the wild olive branches were grafted in (see Romans xi, 11-24), and that they had not been believers once, and that these wild olives were not the people of God.
In his remarks on the eighth chapter of Romans, where he read the ten verses, he undertakes to prove the doctrine of predestination. Admitting that every word proved what he thought it proved, does it prove that Christ did not die for any but the elect? or does it prove that any that Christ died for never can be lost? It simply showed that there were some whom God had upheld continually. You will bear in mind that he has never attempted to free his proposition from the definition I gave it in my first speech. He is silent upon that subject. He has not denied that his system of redemption, implies the doctrine of reprobation, but I will refer you to John Calvin, and to Saint Augustine, who flourished in the fourth century. I affirm that the doctrine of predestination, as he teaches it, was never known in the Christian Church before the fourth century. Saint Augustine was candid. He brought this doctrine from Africa. He was conversant with the oriental languages and customs, and it was from them he received the idea. When he introduced it into the Christian Church, it was considered an innovation upon the gospel, and it was a matter of contention till the sixteenth century. After that time Calvin revived the doctrine; but neither of these great men have ever undertaken to free it from reprobation.
Here, then, we have a system that does not only tell us that Christ never died for some people, but that they have no lot or part in the atonement; they came into the world with a corrupt nature, a nature which they have had no agency in bringing upon themselves. I allude to the new born of every age, both elect and reprobate. Those that come into the world with a corrupt nature--and all do--have no chance of getting to heaven under this system. They must be excluded, unless there is some system by which they can be regenerated and made fit for the kingdom of God. In view of these facts, there is a large majority of those who come into the world who sin because it is their nature: and it follows, as a matter of course, that they sin on till they die. And my friend tells us they will have to be condemned. We have often heard of infant damnation. I say, better that they be damned before contracting personal guilt--before they have sinned--if it is true that there is no salvation provided for them. Hell might then, perhaps, be endurable; but now, with personal guilt upon this imperfect nature, loaded down with sin, they are to be drawn hopelessly into dark, deep damnation, when they never could have avoided that course. Do you expect me to admit this? Are you surprised that I have taken the negative of this proposition? I say it stands opposed to all that is sacred. It stands opposed to the death of Christ by limiting the atonement.
One more remark: if he only atoned for a part, how much more would he have had to suffer for the whole race? I charge him (Hume) with limiting the vicarious value of that atonement. Did he just suffer enough for the elect? In order for the others to have had even a possibility, would he have had to suffer more? I object to his doctrine, as being prejudicial to the glory of God, and the honor of his throne. His justice, goodness and mercy are over all the work of his hands. I object to it, as being prejudicial to the best interests of the human race. No man who acts consistently with that belief will ever reform, unless he is irresistibly compelled to it; and we know that this is not done, only in a few cases. Our brother tells us, in the intepretation of his own case, he had something to do in coming to Christ. Here is a system that tells a sinner that if he is not elected there is no salvation for him. If this is to be his doctrine, how is he to know whether he is elected or not till God reveals it to him, and that by the irresistible influence of the operation of the Holy Spirit? Is it not reasonable, then, that the sinner should feel easy and secure? He would be the greatest fool in the world to make a single effort until God Almighty brought him into harness. Take this doctrine to the unconverted sinner, let him believe that it is true, will he ever make another effort under heaven, till light forces him into it? No; and he will be consistent with the doctrine if he does not.
Let me apply one more text. God says: "Behold, now is the accepted time; today is the day of salvation." If they are to wait till God reveals it to them, does it not make the sinner transgress to God's own word? God tells the sinner, in another place, "I love them that love me, and those that seek me early shall find me." Yet this doctrine tells the sinner he is perfectly safe, and he can wait God's time to bring him in. If he be not of the elect, he is no more than the rich man crouching beneath the deep cloud of dark damnation. These are only a few of the objections we might urge. God tells the preacher to go through the world and offer Christ to the world--all the world--but according to this doctrine, every time he makes that offer, he preaches that which is false. (Time expired.)
MR. HUME'S SECOND PROPOSITION
That personal salvation, so far as relates to the future world, is the effect of the sovereign grace of God, bestowed upon sinners unconditionally.
HUME'S FIRST ADDRESS
ON HIS SECOND PROPOSITION.
[The rule of discussion allowing one hour for the opening speeches on each new proposition was modified, and the subject was disposed of in half a day; therefore, the speakers were limited to half hour speeches.--REPORTER.]
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen:--The first thing I shall do will be to avail myself of the privilege granted me to insert a particular quotation, which is recorded in the tenth chapter of John, and which reads thus: "Other sheep I have, which are not of this fold; these also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice, and there shall be one fold and one shepherd." It is the 16th verse. The reason I desired this inserted was because our brother told us they were made sheep by hearing his voice, and here it is shown that they were recognized as sheep before they heard his voice.
God, my dear friends, has favored us with a beautiful and lovely day outside; and Oh, may his love fill every heart, may the light of his holy spirit guide us in the investigation of this deeply important and vitally interesting subject. A few moments of my first half hour will be devoted to the introduction of direct proof, and then, in the best manner we can, try to sustain them. I would here remark that, as this debate is to be read by generations in the future, I have relied throughout the entire discussion, more upon the testimony itself from God's word, for the defense of the truth, than upon any argument I might use. This is the reason I have devoted so much time to texts. In the first place, turn to Isaiah xlii, 7: "To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison house." Now the 16th verse. "And I will bring the blind by a way that they knew not. I will lead them in paths that they have not known. I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight. These things will I do unto them and not forsake them." Upon these declarations, I predicate the argument of the divine sovereignty of God in the great work of the salvation of sinners. In each of these verses God has declared what he will do, while in neither of them does he make any requisition on the part of the sinner, in regard to what he shall do. Consequently, I regard it as a most positive proof of the doctrine in the proposition which I have agreed to affirm this morning. Isaiah xliii, 25: "I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins." Here we have a reaffirmation of God, in regard to what he will do; he declares emphatically that he does it for his own sake; not in consequence of what may be done by others, but speaks in a manner not to be misunderstood; he tells us plainly that he does it for his own sake, that he will blot out their sins and will not remember them. Isaiah lxv, 1: "I am sought of them that asked not for me; I am found of them that sought me not; I said, behold me, behold me, unto a nation that was not called by name." I would ask this audience if anything more unconditional can be found in the Bible? Here he declares I am found of them that sought me not, clearly setting forth the divine sovereignty of Jehovah in the exhibition of love and mercy extended to that people. Let them be whom they may, is not the question; but the manner and way by which and through which God reveals himself to sinners, that is the question.
Turn to Jeremiah xiii, 23. Here is a very important interrogatory set forth, in my judgment, on the doctrine of my proposition; we find it in the following language, beginning thus: "Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil." What is the force of this language: what is the doctrine taught in it? It is simply this: if the Ethiopian can change his skin, or the leopard change his spots, then may you learn to do well; then the sinner can change his conduct, for they are accustomed to do evil. If this interpretation is correct, then sinners must be in that condition, and it must be by the exercise of the Divine sovereignty of God, that they must be saved, not otherwise. Luke xiv, 23: "And the Lord said unto the servant, go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled." What conditions are presented here? What requisition on the part of the sinner? Here is an express command of God to perform certain work, that is, to go out into the hedges and ditches, and compel them to come in. If a man has to exercise the volition of free will, or if he comes upon the exercise of that volition, where is the necessity of a compelling influence? This seems to me evidence that the doctrine I am contending for, is clearly taught in that verse. Luke xv, 4, 5 and 6: "What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he lost one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it? And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbors, saying unto them, rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost." Again I remark, that if sinners are saved by the exercise of free will, where is the necessity of thus going out, and bringing them in? This is a figurative expression, teaching an important lesson; it shows how it is that God saves sinners; he finds them as sheep, but he does not say, you can come back if you choose; no, he lays them upon his own shoulders, and carries them back home, and invites his neighbors to come and rejoice, for the sheep which was lost is found. Rom iii, 10. Here I may remark, I am selecting a few passages that bear upon this subject. I might stand here and quote till night, if my recollection did not fail me. We will read the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth verses: "There is no fear of God before their eyes. Now we know, that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law; that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin." We take the ground that if salvation is conditional, it is only a carrying out of the law. There was a people anciently, that taught their disciples that except they were circumcised, and kept the law of Moses, they could not be saved. Now, where does conditional salvation differ from this? We are told to keep the law, and to believe certain things, and by such a plan we secure the favor of God. For my life I can not see it--here I need a little more eye-salve of divine grace. I can not see what difference there can be between conditions under the old covenant, and conditions under the new; only, as one refers to temporal and the other to spiritual matters. I maintain, that under the covenant under which we live, there is no condition embraced whatever. Rom. iv, 4 and 8: "Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness." Eighth verse: "Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin." I here asserted that, if his proposition is true, the doctrine of grace in the scriptures is set aside. I want you to understand, distinctly, I care not what the condition may be, repentance, faith, obedience, or all together, if our salvation depends upon the performance of that condition, then the idea of grace is set aside. I have noticed in the dictionary, since I came here, that grace means the "free and unmerited love and favor of God." If I perform a condition, no matter how small, if my salvation depends upon its performance, the idea of grace is completely put away. You admit, if I did not perform that condition, I would not be saved; if that is the turning point of my salvation, it is a system of works. I call upon him to notice this, and let me see if he can convince you it is not a system of works. Mark the language of the text: to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt, but to him that worketh not, but believeth on him, his faith is counted to him for righteousness. Where is the condition here? What condition had they to comply with? Their faith is counted for righteousness; and the apostle tells us that God imputeth righteousness to them without works. If this is so, the doctrine of my opponent is set aside to this family under consideration; God will impute righteousness without works, and that is not all, he says: "Blessed is the man unto whom God will not impute sin." Rom v, 6: "For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly." I remark, that when a person is without strength he can do no manner of work; therefore our brother must show he has the power and strength to perform the work required. This text declares that when we were yet without strength this great work was performed. Rom. ix, 6 and 7: "Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel which are of Israel: neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, in Isaac shall thy seed be called." We will read also the fifteenth verse: "For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion." If the sovereignty of God can be proved at all, if there be any place in the Bible where he himself says, he will show forth his sovereignty, it is here; for the says, I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. To them, it is not of him that willeth, but of God that showeth mercy. I say that if any language can prove a proposition, this does it. God here does declare that the salvation of a sinner does not in any sense depend upon himself. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy; I will ordain whom I will ordain. You may say what you please, and as far as you please, but it is not to him that willeth or runneth, but of God that showeth mercy. I will now read from Romans xi, 6-10: "And if by grace, then it is no more of works, otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then it is no more grace, otherwise work is no more work. What, then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded, according as it is written: God hath given them the spirit of slumber; eyes, that they should not see, and ears, that they should not hear, unto this day. And David saith, let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and stumbling-block, and a recompense unto them; let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back always."
The doctrine of my proposition is found here: "If it be by grace, then it is no more of works." I again ask, is not the exercise of will, of faith, of repentance, an act of the creature; and if it be, is it not works? Do not they require of the sinner these works? Don't they promise him, on condition he performs these works, he will be saved? If this system be true, I can not understand the apostle, when he says it is not offered; otherwise grace is no more grace. You see the apostle will not admit the idea of grace in this case; it is either the one or the other; it can't be both. I never have been able to find the idea of grace in anything I had paid for. If I pay for grace by my repentance, then it is not the free and unmerited love and favor of God, for I have purchased it by my obedience, by my works; that destroys the idea of grace altogether.
Again, turn to 1 Cor. i, 26: "For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are called." Here is the idea of sovereignty of God and sovereign grace.
Our brother tells us, all men are called. Here we have a text, emphatically contradicting that. It then goes on to show, that he has chosen the foolish things of the world, to confound the wise that have chosen things that are not, to bring to naught things that are, "that no flesh shall glory in his presence."
My brother says, if I do not do something, I do not get grace. But here, the apostle says, no flesh shall glory in his presence. Turn to Philippians i, 6. My object now, is to show that this work of God is certain, and can not possibly miscarry: and to present more firmly and conclusively the divine sovereignty of God. "Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it, until the day of Jesus Christ." Mark, God has begun that good work, and he tells you that he is confident and sure that he will perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ. 29th verse of the same: "For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake?" Where is faith to come from, if it is given unto them to believe it is not the act of the creature, it is the gift of God? and, therefore the scriptures do teach the doctrine of unconditional salvation. (Time expired.)
STINSON'S FIRST REPLY
ON THE LAST PROPOSITION.
Ladies and Gentlemen:--I rise to reply to Elder Hume; he has quoted many scriptures, in trying to prove unconditional personal salvation. It strikes me, however, that he has been very unfortunate in his selection. He has accused me, since this debate commenced, of not replying to his evidence. Does he expect me to reply to every text he has quoted in this last half hour? If he does, he is mistaken, for if I did, I should have no opportunity of making an argument; I should be doing what he has done, and you would have the scriptures read over again. I have a few general remarks to make, before I approach his proof. What is the question--that personal and individual salvation is bestowed upon sinners, by the sovereign grace of God unconditionally? Occasionally, we get into points that require some explanation.
Elder Hume, on yesterday, undertook to prove that the elect of God were chosen, elected and saved, before the world was, and that their salvation, by virtue of that choice or decree, was rendered certain.
[HUME--If the gentleman will allow an explanation, I would say, I did not make that remark; but I make this remark now, that in the purpose, counsel and wisdom of God, the plan of salvation was perfect; that's all.]
If his quotations were not intended to prove that the whole family of God was saved, what did he then prove? Did he not try to prove that justification, by virtue of the resurrection of Christ, had passed upon his people? did he not say, that if they were justified, heaven was their home, and it rendered their eternal happiness certain? But, by some strange turn, he comes this morning, and says, he did not say so. Yet he undertakes to introduce a system of personal salvation, to deliver or save the elect. What are we to conclude from his argument? I will favor him as much as I can. He has undertaken to prove that the elect, in the aggregate, were saved, and that individually, they were lost; for if they are not personally and individually lost, they need not salvation, neither conditional nor unconditional.
He first quotes from Isaiah xlii, 7, a beautiful prophecy. If I am not mistaken, it is that chapter which says, "I was found of them that sought me not."
[HUME.--That's the chapter.]
I say that the prophecy alludes to the calling in of the gentile nations; and, according to my understanding, it has not the most remote bearing on personal salvation from sin. He then quotes from Isaiah lxv, 1. This I have marked down gentiles, but he saved me the trouble of proving that it applied to the gentiles, by quoting from the 10th chapter of Romans, where Paul repeats that it meant the calling in of a people that were not a people; the calling in of a people that were blinded by their wickedness. What this could possibly have to do with personal and individual salvation, I have yet to learn. Luke xiv, 16. Here he alludes to the supper, and he finds, in connection with it, that the master told his servants to go out and compel them to come in. I ask Elder Hume if he means to be understood as saying that all who came into the supper were compelled to come in? Answer that YES or NO, if you please. I understand that this supper was to be applied as a figure of the glorious gospel system of salvation. It was provided for certain characters. These characters were invited when the supper was ready; they had been bidden to come but were unwilling to do so; they utterly refused to come; they could not say the supper was not provided for them. I will turn his cannon upon himself. He has, in this debate, continually argued that salvation was never offered, never intended for any but the elect; and here the very persons that were invited, that were bidden to come refused to come. I ask, was not that supper for these men who did not come? I repeat, was it not provided for the men who never tasted it? I will come a little stronger upon this point. What does the master of the supper say was the reason that these men should not taste it? Was it because it was not provided for them? was it because they could not come and eat, or was it because they would not? Yes, that was the reason; they abused their privileges, therefore it was declared that they never should taste of it. In Matthew, where the same occurrences are spoken of, it is said that the master told his servants to "go out into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid them to the marriage." We learn from Luke, that the servants said, "we have done as thou hast commanded, and there is yet room." Now comes the word upon which he intended to rely for unconditional salvation: "Go out and compel them to come in, that my house may be full." Are we to understand that his servants were to go out and bind them and bring them in? This is the only way to compel men. What a beautiful sight it would have been for those in the house who were waiting till the house was filled? Presently here come these men, ironed and bound, pulling them in. Is this the way they must compel men, contrary to their own will? What does this figure teach? Are not the ministers of the gospel the servants, who, with the glorious dispensation of the gospel, are to produce such overwhelming conviction that the sinner may be said to be overcome by it, and falls a victim to argument and reason, and is thus compelled to come in to the supper?
Luke xv, 4, 5, alludes to the lost sheep: "What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness and go after that which is lost till he find it? And when he hath found it he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing." Elder Hume tries to prove from this irresistible and unconditional salvation. Do you apply it in that way?
He says he does apply it in that way; that there is an influence outside of his will, without any act on his part, outside of any operation of his mind, the Lord goes to him and says, here, I have come for you, and now you have to come or go with me whether you will or not, the thing has to be done. If he pleads that he is not ready it will be of no consequence. If he tries to get off by telling him to wait a little while, that has no effect. Even if he tells him he don't believe in him at all, that is of no account. He has to go. Elder Hume intended to apply this text to prove that sins as high as heaven have no influence in keeping him back, for his God unconditionally and irresistibly saves him. This is the doctrine he tells us he finds proved by the text just quoted. The only reply I have to make is that his argument is a misapplication of that text. The question is, does God thus personally save sinners now? He makes a great play on works and grace. He tells us that no man can save himself by his works. Has any person contended for this? What argument of mine is he opposing when he advances this argument? What scripture that I have introduced is he explaining away by this argument? If I have introduced a single text to prove that man can save himself, even in the most remote manner, by his works, I beg leave to say that I was entirely out of place. He showed you that Paul said, "by deeds there shall no flesh be justified." Elder Hume tells us that there is a method by which men can be justified, and that that method is unconditional and irresistible. I am going to try to make a compromise with Elder Hume on Gal. iii, 2: "This only would I learn of you; received ye the spirit by the works of the law or by the hearing of faith?" The apostle here asks them this question, showing them that there were two ways; he reminds them of the impossibility of having received it by the works of the law, but they had received it by the hearing of faith; and that is the way they were saved personally, by the hearing of faith. I undertake to say that no man can be saved by the hearing of faith, independent of the operations of his own mind. If he can, let Elder Hume show how. I repeat, that if we receive Christ by the hearing of faith, and faith is the condition upon which we obtain salvation and an interest in Jesus Christ, then no man can be saved independent of the operations of his mind, or in opposition to it, having it forced upon him. The very idea of a moral agent, possessing freedom of his will, and with the heart believing, and this believing is the means of his receiving Christ, I regard as not only controverting his view, but instead of throwing a doubt upon the subject, it positively proves that personal salvation is conditional. I can not notice all his passages. I will now notice the scriptures that I understand to teach that personal salvation is conditional, and is offered to us by our believing in Jesus Christ. I say again, that faith is a condition, and if my brother can show that the operations of faith in the Son of God can all be accomplished without the moral agency of man, let him show it.
For fear I might lose sight of one important text that he has brought, over and over again, to prove his position, and every time, somehow, I forgot to notice his quotation. I now notice it. John iii, 18, "He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God."
You remember my brother said, in quoting this text, "Is condemned already--does not have to be condemned--the thing is already done." I have quoted the whole text, that it might at least get into the work one time. I now quote from John three, the 14th and 15th verses, "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up; that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life."
Here you see that faith is set forth as an operation which must take place before he can say that Christ is his. If we have shown that faith is a condition--if we have shown that the operations of faith are the exercises of the moral powers of the mind--then, if we are saved by believing, it can not be that we are saved unconditionally. There must be a condition, I think, in that.
We were next told that man's salvation, according to my showing, was of works, not of grace. I undertake to say, that not only is salvation by grace, but that every perfect gift that man receives, whether temporal or spiritual, comes down from the Father of Light. He argues that because we make faith a condition, salvation, therefore, must be of works. Let his controversy be in the right direction. When Jesus says whosoever believeth on him shall not perish, but have everlasting life, the controversy is thrown between Elder Hume and him, in that matter, unless he can show that faith is something outside of the operations of the human mind. (Time expired.)
HUME'S LAST SPEECH
ON THE SECOND AND LAST PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators, Ladies and Gentlemen: I am now before you for the purpose of closing the discussion, so far as I am concerned. In the first place, I shall progress with my scripture quotations, as I have a few more to make.
I now quote from Ephesians ii, 1-5, "And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together in Christ, (by grace ye are saved.)" Is this the sovereign act of God, or is it an act of the creature? We understand to quicken is to give life. Here the language is that God hath done that thing. If any language can more forcibly convey the impression, I am not familiar with such language. He goes on to show what further God has done here. He "hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus; that in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace, in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God." There is one thing here which is as certain as that the sun shines: if this salvation is the gift of God, it is not an act of the creature, and the apostle says it is not of works, lest any man should boast.
Respecting Brother Stinson's passage, "he that believeth shall be saved," the question is, how does faith come? Upon what principles do men realize faith? I read in the first chapter of Ephesians, that they believed according to the working of the mighty power of God, which he wrought in Christ when he raised him from the dead. What is the conclusion? It requires the same power to enable the sinner to believe in Jesus Christ that it requires to raise Christ from the dead.
Now, if it requires this, such exercise of faith is the gift of God, and not the act of the creature. Faith is irresistible. I ask you, when you were first enabled to believe, could you help it; when you were first enabled to embrace Christ, to rejoice in God? I know the Christian says, no; and I know you could not neither. You were glad to know that the thing was so, and you received it as the gift of God. This is the way we understand faith. Now turn to Titus iii, 5, 6: "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour." If faith is an act of the creature, it is a righteous act. If we can not be saved without faith, and faith is a righteous act, and the act of the creature, does not this contradict the apostle, when he says, "Not by works of righteousness, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost?" Again, John i, 13: "Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God." I ask, if with the wisdom of God, man could possibly express language more powerful than that salvation or birth of the sinner is by the will of God, and the will of man is not consulted? He was not born in that way; hence, that language, "Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God." If this be true, then it is unconditional. Let him say what he may, if this birth is of God, and not according to the will of man, then I maintain my proposition is sustained beyond a possibility of contradiction.
Another important objection which I have to my brother's system, is, that it leaves the whole matter of the salvation of the sinner entirely suspended upon uncertainties; there is no certainty of a single sinner being saved. While if it is possible for men to be saved by complying with certain conditions, it is equally possible for them to fail to comply--the rule must work both ways. If it be possible for men to believe, it is equally possible for no man to come to Christ. Hence, the love of God, the atonement of Christ, the gift of the Bible, the preaching of the gospel, the labor of the church, the prayers of the saints, in the end, may all fail, and God in glory be without anybody to praise him; that is the true and legitimate consequence, and I challenge the contradiction. Do not forget this position. I re-affirm that if is possible for the sinner to be saved by conditions, it is equally possible for all men to be damned without those conditions. The gentleman condescended to notice five of my quotations; I introduced thirty-five; and he says of that in Isaiah, "I was found of them that sought me not," that this refers to the gentiles. I want him to show us some evidence. With all my confidence in him, I am not willing to take his word for it.
He wants to know, forsooth, if I believed in regard to the text, Go compel them to come in, that it meant binding them hand and foot, manacling them, and forcing them in physically? I believe no such thing. We remark, in the first place, that the language of God to the servant presented the idea that "Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power." We do not believe that God saves any man against his will. We believe that when the man is renewed, he realizes that holy will. With that will, God brings the sinner. Every sinner who desires to come may come; hence, the language is addressed to that kind of character, and none other. We do not believe in physical force, but in the power of divine truth, to overwhelm the judgment of the sinner, and obtain the consent of his will. In that way he is brought into the kingdom of the blessed. But the gentleman inquires, was the supper for any that did not come?
I do not know that it matters much to me which I admit. I do not care how great a supper you have, nor how far you extended the invitation; there is one thing true, that is this; there is no man who will come at the call or invitation, unless he has an appetite to eat; there is no good news to such a man, of the table being spread, when he doesn't want to eat. He must first have an appetite; when he has got the appetite, how heavenly is the news to him to come and eat! It was so with many here today, when you were hungering and starving, and about to go down, when the news of the gospel table spread, and abundance to satisfy your cravings, how gladly you received the new, and ran to the feast; you feasted your soul, and was rejoiced in his love.
I will make a remark here about faith. I have a quotation, which my brother gave us: "He that believeth on the Son, hath everlasting life." I will shake hands with him over that text; but does it read, if you will believe, you shall have everlasting life?"
[STINSON--I will find one that does.]
If you will show me a text of that kind, I will surrender. The point I make is, he that believeth hath everlasting life, being in possession of faith; hence the man that does believe in Christ Jesus, is already in possession of it, for he that believeth hath everlasting life. In the present tense, he has it already, and that is the reason he believes in it.
I have replied now to my brother's positions. We are now about to close this discussion, so far as I am concerned. There is one thing true: God knows the hearts of men; he knows that I did not court this discussion; he knows that I have had no desire to obtain a mastery, that I have no desire to be called victor; but let the matter turn as it will, one thing is certain--when I retire from here, I shall carry with me a clear conscience. I have advocated those principles which I believe to be true. I appeal to the regenerate sons and daughters of my Saviour, of every denomination, of every class and order, and I ask you, dear friends, when you first became concerned about your salvation, was it not at a time when you were not looking for it, when you had no thought of your Saviour, that you became enlisted, you became exercised? I would ask, why were you not exercised before that time? I know what you say is true--you had no thought of it. Why did you not turn to God sooner; was it because you did not know you were a sinner? No. Was it not because you did not know that you had to be changed or born of another will? What was the cause; why did you not turn to Christ sooner? You answer thus--never till this time, did I feel so deeply interested in my condition as a sinner. My father and mother both taught it to me, and the Bible reveals the fact; but never till now, did I feel deeply interested in my salvation.
My dear friends, I will spend the last ten minutes in contrasting the two systems that are in dispute.
What is the difference between the two systems, the views I have been advocating, and those which our brother has presented to you? Upon the views I have been advocating, every single human being who listens to the invitation is saved, every single idiot on God's earth is saved upon this plan; every single penitent sinner is saved, every true mourner is saved upon this plan; all--the last man, the last woman that is not seeking sin, but desiring heaven, will be saved, and when we get them all together, they form an innumerable company, which no man can number. That the salvation of this number is settled and certain beyond a doubt. While we take the ground, that our God has never declared that any sinner shall be saved, I would remark, in view of a quotation made yesterday, sinners have rebelled against God, and reprobation is an act of the sinner not of Jehovah; hence, my friends, you see the system I have attempted to establish, and I will just say, in winding up, whosoever will, let him take of the water of life freely. I don't care who he is, nor what his name or condition may be, our gospel says, he must have the will first to come to Christ; and when he has it, he will come.
How is it on the other side? We say everybody may come, if they will, but nobody HAS to come. We say that there is a possibility of the race being saved, and an equal possibility of the race being damned; if he does not use the language itself, it is my interpretation of his doctrine. I ask, is there a lady or gentleman here that can deny it? If there is a possibility of one, there is of the other. Hence you see, our system, hard as you say it is, unreasonable as you say it is, it reaches the condition, and secures the salvation of a great portion of the race. While the other system reaches the condition, and secures the salvation of NONE; only upon certain conditions, which may be complied with or may not. Hence you see the reason why I feel so sure our doctrine is true, because God is honored, and Jesus Christ is exalted, and sinners are saved. This is the plan by which the sinner is saved, the plan which God has revealed, which God has originated in his own mind in eternity, which is revealed here; and in which he says, my word shall go out, and shall not return unto me void; it shall prosper in the thing whereunto I sent it. God knows this, and he is not going to be disappointed, nor have his power resisted, to go begging, mourning and weeping; no! He goes to accomplish everything necessary to the salvation of the sinner. Oh my soul, I know experimentally that nothing but such a system can reach such a case as old Joel Hume. I know I was a sinner of the deepest dye, and nothing but the grace of God, bestowed upon me unconditionally, will ever save me, for I was not seeking Christ, till I was arrested in my course, and shown my condition. So, sinner, will be your condition when God Almighty gives you the knowledge of your condition, and not till then will you repent of your sins. My dear friends, if you can, will you please tell me which of the two systems is the most applicable to man, and which gives God the most glory, and which will result in the most good to the greater number of the sons and daughters of earth? Oh may the Lord help you and me, may he inspire us to investigate these sublime truths impartially. Oh may God give us an understanding of the revelation of his Divine economy. Oh may he help us to live in accordance with the doctrine of our Lord and Saviour, and in all things live soberly and righteously, looking forward for that blessed hope, in our Lord and Saviour. Oh it fills my soul with joy unspeakable, and makes me rejoice in God, my redeemer, to think that such a wretch, such a vile rebel as I should indulge a little hope, unworthy as I am today, that my name is engraven in the glorious record of the future, as one that Jesus died for. I feel that I could take you all to the throne of grace, for this is not a system of hate. I have thus labored here, because my soul is enlisted for you; I thus labor, because I love you, and because I love my Saviour. My head is now whitened with the frost of many winters; no doubt, in a short time I shall go down to the tomb. How sweet will be the divine voice that says, you have done your duty, you have been faithful. Oh may we so live that when we come to die, we may die in peace and faith, and be enabled to adopt the language of the apostle: "I have fought a good fight, I have kept the faith; henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of glory, and not for me only, but for all them that believe his appearing. Amen. (Time expired.)
STINSON'S LAST REPLY
ON THE LAST PROPOSITION.
Gentlemen Moderators: In my present speech I have but few things to reply to. I shall not contradict his experience. He has told it twice, for the purpose, doubtless, of proving his doctrine true. So far as his experience goes, in establishing the doctrine he has undertaken to prove, will be for the people to judge. Neither have I any reply to make to his good exhortation. If he saw fit to make one, and thought it would do more good than argument, it was his privilege to do so. He has made a new point, according to my understanding of our debate. He has come to the word faith; he has worked all round it; he has turned it over and over; he seems to think, at times, that it is the gift of God altogether, yet some scriptures come in his way that will not lead quite to that conclusion. He can not get around it, to make faith exist independent of the voluntary operations of the human mind. You all see his difficulty. How does he get around it? In this way? that man does not believe in order to be saved, because he is already saved. He makes this point definitely. That the sinner, or Christian he may call him, is already saved. I hope he alluded away back to his election and choosing.
[HUME.--Do you want an explanation, sir?]
No, sir, not now. He said he would surrender if I could find the text that said, "If thou believest thou shalt be saved."
[HUME.--Those are not my words.]
What did he say, then?
[HUME.--I said if thou wilt believe, or will believe, thou shalt be saved.]
Is there any difference between that expression and "if thou believest thou shalt be saved?" The point he makes is that man is saved before he believes, and that, therefore, belief, although it may, to some extent, include the operations of the mind, yet that these operations never existed until after the sinner is saved. I am no scholar, but this debate will be read by scholars, who will be able to see the force of such reasoning. I will now quote from John's gospel, iii, 14, 15: "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have eternal life." Is not this in the future tense? "But have eternal life." He has stated that they believed because they already possessed everlasting life. Another text without chapter. There was a certain sinner at Phillippi (just allow me to say that after God had taken them out of prison), the jailer, fell down and said, sirs, what shall I do to be saved (or rather what shall I do because I am saved already)? Here is the point in question. "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, because you are already saved:" is that the answer? Is that the way the apostle answers him? Elder Hume answers us so. No, my friends, but "believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved." If he has admitted to let the argument hang upon this truth, that faith does not precede salvation, I claim a victory, because I have quoted a text that can not be construed otherwise, and receive its legitimate meaning. Another text, without chapter and verse. This I will bring in to prove that unconditional salvation is not taught in the Bible. There was a certain young man that came to Jesus running and kneeling. He said: "Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life." Suppose this man were to come to Elder Hume, running, with the same inquiry? I do not mean that Elder Hume would say this to him, but his doctrine would say to him, you are altogether mistaken, it is not suspended on anything you can say or do, the whole matter is outside of you, my dear young friend. If you are one of God's elect he will save you, but if not you are not counted. But what does Jesus say to him? Here was a fair chance to teach the truth. He first refers the young man to the laws, and he said these he had kept from the days of his youth; then Jesus says to him: "If thou wilt be perfect sell all that thou hast and distribute to the poor, and come and follow me." Are we to suppose that he could not see any conditions in this? Jesus tells him how he can obtain it; did that young man understand Jesus that there were conditions in it? Let the result explain it. The young man went away sorrowing for he had great possessions. Jesus looked on him and loved him; and what did he say? It is hard for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. I ask, are there no conditions taught here, either expressed or implied? Respecting the feast, he admitted my criticism that God did not use any violence in compelling them to come in. But what does he say? Does he tell us the reason why the men who were first bidden did not come in? He did not say it was because they could not, but he has said as much in many other cases. He could not have sufficient courage to work it into this case. How did he dispose of it? By saying a man never eats till he is hungry; the reason they did not come to Christ was because they had no appetite.
But what does Jesus say? Does he say they had no appetite; therefore they would not come in; or that they had plenty at home that satisfied them? No. But they all began to make excuses; one had bought a tract of land; one some oxen; one had married a wife. Not because they had no appetite. The whole quotation proves, according to my mind, that man is a moral agent, and to show this is clearly the object of the whole parable. But his having admitted that God did not force them in, takes away the last glimmering ray of hope out of his "compel them" to come? He brings in another point, which, for the life of me, I can not see. He has told you, throughout the whole of this debate, that his system makes the salvation of infants certain. Now, is there an argument in the debate upon that question? The only thing which I remember having been said about the salvation of infants, was in connection with the remarks on Ishmael and Esau; since then he has never referred to that once. But then he replied to it by a remarkably singular stroke of his criticism, and said he did not mean their posterity. I ask you, according to his affirmation, has he proved that infants would certainly be saved? He says his system proves that infants would be saved, and that idiots would be saved. This admits at least my first proposition, "That Jesus Christ made an atonement to the Adamic law for the human race." For him to make it appear from his system that all infants are saved, he has to show how it happened that in God's choice he elected every one that would die in infancy. Has he given us the most remote evidence that God, in this choice, embraces certainly every person who dies in infancy, and every idiot? I must now refer to my exposition of his promises yesterday, and he has never objected to my showing that his doctrine involved the reprobation of a part of the human race. The confession of faith of the old Baptists, called Predestinarians, says that all infants dying in infancy are saved, but supposes that it is uncertain whether all infants are elected or not. Has he so explained his doctrine as to demonstrate the truth that all infants are saved? If he has, I have failed to see it. Brother H. first introduced the idea in his closing argument; he has given me no chance of attaching it to his system; but I undertake to say that the doctrine of unconditional salvation is one of unconditional reprobation. No man can explain or make it certain, according to this doctrine, that all infants are saved. There is no text in the Bible that I have ever found that says all dying in infancy are elected. Then how has he shown it? For he has denied the general atonement, which is the only system, according to my view of the matter, that renders the salvation of infants certain. If they are free from the curse of the Adamic law as I tried to prove them, then, if they died before they committed sin personally, there can be no guilt upon them. They do not suffer condemnation or eternal hell, but God says the penalty is, "Dust thou art, and to dust shalt thou return." The general atonement teaches us, first, that the condemnation for original sin was removed by Jesus Christ; that he came to take away the sin of the world. Secondly, it teaches that the body that dies must be raised again; that Jesus Christ has secured a resurrection of the dead. These two put together, make the salvation of all infants certain. Although Elder Hume can not reply, still I would like to know if he can, on any other principle, establish the certainty of infant salvation?
The doctrine of which I have been the affirmant has some wonderful bad consequences. What is his most formidable objection to it? He has shown us that it was bad among the unconverted; but he intended to bring up one sweeping argument--that if the doctrine was true, every sinner might be saved, or every sinner might be lost. I will not reply to this point; it pries so deep into the metaphysical that I do not regard it as worthy of reply. I will now say a few words of his doctrine, which he has attempted to prove in so many ways. I have a few objections to it. First, I say I object to it because it is contrary to every text of scripture that teaches Jesus Christ died for all men.
I object to it, secondly, because it contradicts every scripture that offers salvation to the human race. These two objections are enough to show that there must be something in the doctrine radically wrong. The elder knows this difficulty is there; hence, his great effort to show that Jesus Christ did not die for all, and that salvation is not offered to all. I claim to have quoted scriptures which he has failed to show meant anything else. He has told us that the word ALL does not mean the race. We are willing to admit, in some cases, it does not. He has told us that EVERY MAN does not mean the race. But he has told us that the words ALL MEN, ALL THE WORLD, EVERY MAN, never do mean the race, as we have quoted? Has he shown this, that they never do mean the race? If he has failed to do this, my evidence stands as a Gibraltar against all his arguments.
The doctrine of irresistible and personal salvation contradicts the experience of every man.
[HUME.--There is one man here whose experience it don't contradict.] (Laughter.)
He tried to sustain this point by a very happy appeal to the audience. I will make another appeal, and in it I include Elder Hume. Did God save any of you without your having done anything that pointed toward your salvation? Nobody answers. I did not expect it. Elder Hume, unfortunately for him, has told us his experience. He has told us that he was saved by believing on Jesus Christ, and that he did seek the Lord Jesus entirely outside of himself. He sought him away out in a pawpaw thicket, with intensity of heart. If we had been within hearing of him, we would have heard him groaning in tears, that God might save him, and now he tries to show you that you are saved outside of yourself, without any condition. But we must close, having but a few moments more of time.
Elder Hume, in the goodness of his heart, tells you that his motive has been good in this investigation. I claim to be actuated by the same principle. He has repeatedly asked you to take the subject home with you and investigate it for yourselves, as it involved your salvation; yet when I spoke of my responsibility, the other day, he told us, in his next speech, that he never had anything to do with saving men. He did not feel in that way. Paul says to Timothy, when instructing him how to preach, that "in so doing thou shalt save thyself and them that hear thee." God says that if he sets the watchman upon the walls, and he see the sword coming and blow not the trumpet, the blood of the sinner shall be required at the watchman's hands. None of these apply to our beloved brother, according to his doctrine, for unconditional and irresistible salvation precludes the possibility of all instrumentalities. Paul was mistaken when he said, "We are co-workers together with God." You see the weakness of his argument. And now, I will charge upon that doctrine, that, if it be true, the sinners who believe it act consistently. They will never seek salvation till God irresistibly compels them to seek it.
One of the most affecting sights I ever witnessed, was that of a young man who had been brought up in this faith. I talked with him often; he was taken sick; I visited him; I knew his views upon this matter; I saw he was not concerned; I spoke to him of the short time he had to live, and of the importance of making preparation for eternity. He turned to me, as unconcerned as I ever saw a man, and said, "Sir, you know my opinion upon these things." Here was a man entering eternity perfectly unconcerned, from the fact that he believed that if he was one of the elect, heaven would be his home, and that if he was not elected, hell was his doom, unconditionally. (Time expired.)
HOME | FINNEY LIFE | FINNEY WORKS | TEXT INDEX | SUBJECT INDEX | GLOSSARY | BOOK STORE