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PROCEEDINGS OF GENERAL CONVENTION OF PRIMITIVE BAPTISTS

HELD IN DALLAS, TEXAS, FEBRUARY 22--23, 1927

 

General Convention of Primitive Baptists from Texas and other states of the Union met in one of the auditoriums of the First Baptist Church, Dallas, Texas, at 10:00 o'clock A. M., Tuesday, February 22, 1927.

Meeting called to order by Dr. W. W. Fowler, who made the following statement to the gathering: If I understand the object of this meeting, it is in response to an appeal sent out by Elder Newman's churches to all the churches in Texas to meet at this time for the purpose of endeavoring, to put into application the recommendations that were made by the Convention held at Dallas in August last. In order to do this, there necessarily exists some local disorders-we have been calling them irregularities--that will have to be investigated in some manner to be decided by this body; I think perhaps best by a committee appointed and a decision rendered as to what method we will pursue regarding the adjustment of these local disturbances, so that we may all come together and live in peace.

On motion made and seconded, Elder J. W. Herriage was elected Moderator; and Elder C. H. Cayce, Clerk.

Invocation by Elder H. G. Richards.

 

Moderator: I want to say to our brethren and sisters in the Lord Jesus Christ, that we should be one in heart, that our aim should be one. and our desire one. We want all of you to feel welcome, and to feel that you have equal rights one with another. I want this to be a meeting from which no brother can go arid say we would have been glad to have done so and so, but we could not. I want you to feel that this is our meeting, that it belongs to us, that we are here in the interest of the cause of the precious Old Baptists, the people of God. Let us try to do everything that we do to the honor and glory of God, and the good of His people.

Elders W. W. Fowler and J. L. Collings were appointed as a committee on credentials, to enroll the names of the messengers present, authorized, from the respective churches.

The following names were enrolled:

 

Those known as the Newman side;

Elder J. S. Newman, Cibola.

A. B. Neal, J. B. Cody, Mount Olive.

Elder M. W. West, Lester Harris, Lebanon.

W. R. Blackman, Point Enterprise.

J. E. Hardie, Ephesus.

J. D. Swannor, Mount Zion.

J. E. Schrimsher, Sister M. W. Miracle, Elder O. F. Dearing, Dallas.

Elder O. F. Dearing, Orchard Gap.

Elder C. J. L. Bolinger, Lake View.

Elder J. L. Collings, Lone Pilgrim, Mineral Springs, Damascus.

Cleveland Griffin, South Fork.

Elder C. H. Cayce, Fordyce, (Ark.)

Elders J. A. Moore and L. A. Patterson, Ephesus (Houston)

Elder L. A. Patterson, Pilgrim's Rest.

Lee R. Rhodes, Elder C. J. Holcomb, J. W. Messick. Z. Connally, H. B. Walker, Fort Worth, Sycamore Heights.

Elder J. C.: Phipps, Lone Pilgrim, Collingsworth County.

Elder J. W. West, Zion's Rest.

 

Present, but not by church authority:

Elder L. J. McCarty, Corinth.

Elder L. J. Gresham, Liberty Hill.

Elder J. J. Edwards, De Leon.

 

Those known as the Richards side:

Elder H. G. Richards, Joy Church, Clay County.

N. O. Carter, L. E. Eskridge, Elder H. L. Griggs, County Line.

Elder R. B. Hester, Corinth, (Snyder).

Elder W. W. Fowler, J. T. Watson, D. F. Jaggers, Dallas.

Elder E. P. McNeil, J. A. Holland, W. A. Henderson. S. J. Eaton, Mount Zion (Mullin)

Eider R. E. Wilson, S. W. Tidwell, J. T. Wilson, Mountain Peak Elder J. W. Herriage, Little Flock (Oklahoma)

J. D. Biggs, C. S. Coleman, Salem (Oglesby)

Motion by Dr. Watson and seconded by J. C. Holcomb, that those present, but not by church authority be also seated if they so desire. Carried.

 

DR. FOWLER: I suggest that inasmuch as we have met here for the purpose of trying to decide what we are going to do, we had better go about it in an orderly way, that a committee be appointed to retire to the committee room and that all necessary things be brought before them, having the reporter present, and let the committee then formulate and present their recommendations regarding these matters. Let me say that no decision rendered by anybody, committee or council, is binding upon any church unless that church wants to adopt it itself.

H. G. RICHARDS: I do not exactly approve of Dr. Fowler's suggestion. I do not like the idea of a committee going off into a room to itself, calling in brethren to discuss matters out of the hearing of all of these Baptists assembled here. I would like to have this hearing in the presence of all of us, then if the committee wants to retire to discuss these things, I would have no objections.

DR. FOWLER: That would be agreeable to me.

J. W. HERRIAGE: I want to make this suggestion. I have had experience enough in life to know that everybody's business is nobody's business. Should you undertake to thresh out and discuss all the different. items leading up to an agreement of principles, you will never reach that agreement before this body. My suggestion is an amendment to Dr. Fowler's suggestion, that the committee retire to a special room and adopt its principles and then bring them before this body.

H. G. RICHARDS: One reason I made the suggestion a moment ago was that some evidence introduced in the committee room would of necessity, call for other evidence, and brethren who might be in possession of other evidence along this line would not know anything about it, and that it would have a tendency to obscure the issue or lessen the opportunity of brethren to introduce their evidence on their side of the question.

C. H. CAYCE: The first thing we should consider before deciding as to the manner of procedure regarding this committee is that we are here for the purpose of endeavoring to smooth out and get away from us all malice and ill feeling toward each other. If that is our job, and I believe it is, then we should be careful not to take a step that will cause a single one here or anyone else to have ruffled feelings. Then this committee that shall be appointed, if not one acquainted with all the circumstances and conditions in Texas, should be a committee that would know how to weigh evidence. There should be present with that committee those from both sides who do know all the circumstances m the different localities to be discussed. I feel that Elders Fowler and Richards should be present and Elders Newman and Collings, and let the committee call for any other witnesses they wish. And while everything said by those witnesses will not be heard in open meeting, the result of the weight of the testimony will be heard as a committee report.

H. G. RICHARDS: I am in perfect sympathy with what Brother Cayce and the other brethren have said, but hardly think that would be satisfactory. He mentioned both Dr. Fowler and myself to be present. I would not be willing to do it, to undertake to bring all the evidence on our side before these brethren, because what I might consider to be evidence, a number of our brethren would think was not and vice versa. I will say this. Personally I would be willing to let any five conscientious brethren here, and I believe all of them are, go in there and render a decision without me or any of my immediate brethren, testifying, but this meeting is to try to remove the things that stand in the way of peace and to satisfy our brethren. They are all conscientious and looking at this in the way they think is right. Their belief is based upon evidence, whether true or false, and therefore I say that we want to endeavor in this meeting to satisfy these brethren.

C. H. CAYCE: I did not mean to leave the impression that the committee would exclude anyone from coming before them to testify. Anyone who knows anything about it would be perfectly welcome to tell what they know about the case.

DR. FOWLER: I think the way to decide this is to get the mind of the body. I suggest that the motion be put.

Motion by Dr. Fowler, and seconded, that a committee be appointed and that then it be left to that body whether it be a private or public committee meeting. Carried.

Motion by Elder J. A. Moore, seconded by Elder H. G. Richards, that Elder Fowler appoint four and Elder J. L. Collings four, and that these eight appoint three additional on the committee. Carried.

Elder Fowler appointed Elders J. W. Herriage, H. G. Richards, R. E. Wilson and H. B. Kuykendall.

Elder Collings appointed Elders J. A. Moore, J. S. Newman, Marion West and L. J. McCarty.

Motion by Elder C. H. Cayce that Brother Fowler and Brother Collings be seated with the committee. Carried.

To this committee was added Elders Leon H. Clevenger, John R. Harris and T. L. Webb.

Motion by Dr. Fowler, seconded by Elder C. J. Holcomb that the committee retire to the committee room. Carried.

Motion by Dr. Fowler and second, that there be seated with the committee, Elders E. C. Mahurin, H. G. Ball, G. S. Mayo and J. W. Poe. Carried.

A committee composed of D. F. Jaggers, Lee Rhodes and Steve Richardson was appointed to arrange preaching for the meeting.

Motion by Elder J. C. Phipps, seconded by Dr. Fowler, that Elder C. H. Cayce be added to the committee. Carried.

The committee appointed Elders E. P. McNeil and J. W. West to occupy the stand at 2 p. m. on Tuesday, the first day, Elders E. C. Mahurin and C. H. Cayce to preach at night, Elders L. A. Patterson and R. B. Hester to occupy the stand Wednesday morning, beginning at ten o'clock, and Elders J. S. Newman and J. W. Herriage to preach at eight o'clock, Wednesday night.

The meeting adjourned until the afternoon session, which was announced as 1:30 for the committee and 2:00 o'clock for the general meeting.

IN COMMITTEE ROOM

Meeting convened at 1:30 o'clock.

Roll call was had and all members answered present.

On motion of Elder R. E. Wilson, Elder J. W. Herriage was elected as Moderator and Elder C. H. Cayce as Clerk.

Prayer by Elder John R. Harris.

 

MODERATOR: I want our brethren to confine themselves as much as possible, to the subject matter introduced and brought before this body. Whatever matter we may take up, let us go into it, investigate it, look into it for its worth, and let us do that in brotherly love, kindness and respect to all parties concerned.

H. G. RICHARDS: The purpose of this meeting is to endeavor with all our hearts to make peace among the old Baptists in Texas, the different factors, and the only way we can do that will be worth anything, is to do it right. Brethren, I am not making this talk for oratory or to stir up any confusion, but I feel that what I want to say now, this is the only place to say it. We are anxious to make peace. I believe that every one in this room is anxious to make peace and to make it upon the right kind of principles we cannot afford to desert the principles of Jesus Christ that He delivered to the church for its government. We may desert them, but if we do, it will be to our sorrow. I want to ask a question. There was a difference in expressions on the subject of regeneration. I cannot, afford to deny that. There were expressions used by a good many brethren that I cannot endorse. This is the question that I want to ask. Brother Newman, are you willing to repudiate every statement you used which reasonably could be construed to teach that the body is changed in regeneration?

J. S. NEWMAN: It would not do for me to attempt to tell you how often I have tried to make acknowledgment for every awkward expression I have used on the subject of regeneration. I have made acknowledgments time and time again for them, and they are from the bottom of my heart. I have never believed the whole man doctrine, never have taught it, never expect to believe it, and I will never confess that I ever taught or believed this doctrine because I would confess to that which is absolutely untrue. Yes I freely repudiate every expression I have ever used that ever indicated that I believed that man was born again or spiritualized in his entirety. I do not believe that and I never did. I have never said that I did. Now if you want to discuss the whole man doctrine, as it is called, I want some of your brethren who know what that doctrine is, to define it. Don't tell what you think it is, but tell what Primitive Baptists have always called the whole man doctrine. What I might think was the whole man doctrine might be in opposition to what our people, as a whole understand it to be. I have scrupulously guarded against advocating the theory that man was made pure and sinless in regeneration. I have opposed that. I oppose it now. I believe this old body of ours is natural, is mortal but to say that this body is now quickened, now changed in that sense is a point blank denial of the resurrection of the body. If the body was changed now, as it is going to be in the future, you would never die. I would never die. Anyone who has any judgement knows that, that is not the truth. I have never advocated it, do not believe it, never did, neither do my people. Yes, I repudiate everything I have said that ever intimated that this body was born again and made spiritual.

DR. FOWLER: I do not want to appear officious, or to talk too much in the work of this committee, but I am desirous that the old Baptists come to an understanding whereby they can live together. I have been on the firing line, or at least you might say, where the firing lines come together. I have been shot at from both sides, and all sides, since the Dallas meeting in August, 1926, for the reason that I happened to get hold of the little paper we were publishing and I have been in position to know from my point of view exactly why the Dallas recommendations have not been accepted by our brethren. I am talking about the Richards faction. They never have understood what the committee meant to convey by Article 21. The Waxahachie meeting proved that our brethren were fighting the wording of Article 21 and not its intention. I could not come out in the paper at that time with an article stating that the wording was erroneous. This might have led someone to believe I was willing to go back on the Dallas recommendations. This I was not willing to do. I saw immediately that there would be about twenty-five percent of the Richard's faction who would accept the work of that meeting, with seventy-five percent of them left on the outside, if we forced the thing at that time. I did not intend to do it or be a party to it. I say we must go slowly and have a better understanding among our brethren if we ever came to an agreement. I began at once to try to get our brethren together in a meeting where we could either change the wording of Article 21, so that everyone could understand it, or get at an understanding of its intentions. The only object I have in this world is the honor and glory of God and the fellowship of his people and to maintain the order of God's house. I have never wanted to see our brethren come together in a disorderly way and find out later, it could not stand. When the committee was writing this Article, Brother Collings and Brother Newman were present, and they know what happened. Something was said about these local disturbances, but it was set aside with a wave of the hand by our moderator. He was in a hurry at that time and said, “Let us lay down a general principle and let these local disturbances take care of themselves”. He understood it, we who were present understood it, and it would have been all right, but many of our people were not there. So when we met at Waxahachie there was a general disturbance and confusion over article 21, nothing accomplished, but conditions made worse. Our brethren went back home disgusted. We have been laboring under a handicap on account of the wording of Article 21; we cannot amend the recommendation of that convention, but we can come to an understanding of one that will take the place, of it. I have outlined here an amendment which I think expresses in better form the aim of the committee and I want to present it for your consideration.

“When churches divide on a minor question of doctrine or practice, and become alienated, refusing to affiliate with each other, if they retain their identity in other points they may become reconciled by a confession of error or errors, by either or both churches, whenever such errors exist, and the official work of both church during the alienation be recognized as valid.

“When members have been excluded from an orderly church after due gospel labor for heresy or otherwise and have set themselves up claiming to be the original church, they should be required to go back to the original church from which they were excluded and make their acknowledgments. As, before being restored. Any official work that such excluded members have done during the alienation must be discarded.”

J. W. HERRIAGE: There is no use in trying to deal with all these items at once. If we are going to amend Article 21, let us do it. It was the understanding of all the committeemen that inasmuch as we were considering an agreement between myself, Elders Collings, Newman, and Fowler, that in this meeting we introduced minor points under consideration; the Committee have all expressed themselves as understanding it just that way. My church received the recommendation of the Dallas convention with the understanding that it should read “minor points” and I am willing to amend the Article to read that way.

H. G. RICHARDS: It seems to me that the best way to unravel this tangle is to state our interpretation of Article 21.

J. S. NEWMAN: If we are going to remodel Article 21, I think in the first place the people who drew it up and subscribed to it are the proper ones to change it. I do not think that it would be exactly right for this body to change what another body did inasmuch as the Baptist all over Texas and most of it have already officially endorsed the Article. It has been explained time and again that we did not mean that where a vital, fundamental difference existed we should proceed as suggested in the Article, but where misunderstandings would come up and where there was really no vital difference we thought they could come back together by confessing their faults and accepting each other's official work. Primitive Baptists have practiced that from time immemorial; they have practiced it in Texas long before this Dallas meeting was ever thought of. Dr. Fowler there, Elder S. N. Redford and a man by the name of J. S. Newman, the latter being moderator, attended a meeting in Mills County where it was suggested that the churches come back together by confessing their faults and accepting each other's works, and they did it. Dr. Fowler knows this. I do not see that we can help that Article a bit, but of course if you brethren want to amend it, I will not set my judgement against yours.

C. H. CAYCE: I call Elder Newman's attention the fact that he and I served together with other brethren in a council meeting in Mississippi, a number of years ago when churches were divided and there was a recommendation by that council what these churches come back together. He will remember that the divided churches accepted each other's work and they did come together.

H. G. RICHARDS: At the Dallas Meeting I did not like the wording of Article 21 and when it was read I asked Elder Cayce, if they meant to refer to fundamental principles, and he said they did not. My objection to it then was that it might be construed to refer to fundamentals; but when they replied that it did not, it satisfied me. If the brethren here feel that they want to express themselves, they have as much right to do so as the Fulton brethren did on the old London Confession of Faith.

R. E. WILSON: It seems that in the discussion of Article 21 in the general meeting here at Dallas, there was a general understanding that the committee meant minor points. From the report of that meeting I note that H. G. Richards asked, “We do not intend to put within this statement that churches may forsake the fundamental principles of their doctrine and then come back and recognize each other's works?” and was answered thus by Brother Cayce, “I didn't mean to convey that idea in my statement and I know the committee did not.” It seems to be this settled it.

J. L. COLLINGS: I would like to say that although I did not at first endorse the wording of Article 21, yet after it was explained I approved it, and I am heartily in accord with the sentiment as explained: if this amendment is put to a vote, I will vote against, it here or this reason. I am not going to put myself in a position that would intimate that I am repudiating in the least way what we did in Dallas on August 24th and 25th. That action is according to the Primitive Baptists Jew every since I have known them personally, and as far back as I can read sit? them, and I can read after them farther than any other people on earth as an organization known as the Church of God. And yet, in extreme cases, we have- absolutely departed from the teaching of that expression we have forgotten it, and in more instances than one. We teach (all factions have) one thing and practice another. It is this teaching one thing and practicing another that is causing trouble among our people, and has caused trouble among our people ever since there has been trouble among them and that will cause trouble as long as we are a people. If we should accept that amendment in lieu of Article 21, then the question would come as to what is a minor point of doctrine. Brethren, if I know my heart, I am going to speak for myself, now, and I trust I will speak for the people I have been identified with and I do hope and pray to God that I may speak, for every individual that bears the name of Primitive Baptist in and out of the state of Texas today we must get to the point where we can look over some, of the mistakes we have made, that we can forgive, that we can all do our part of the coming. If we want to live together, we must reach that point. Brethren, until we reach that point, our efforts to get together are going to be in vain, with perhaps this exception, that the more we labor to that end, the nearer perhaps we can get together. If we should insert the word “minor” this evening, we could argue here until time is no more on what is a minor point of doctrine and order. Have we met together for that purpose? If we have, let me know; my wife needs me at home, my work needs me. I am through fighting, except it be the good fight of faith. I am through with my fighting, brethren; I have quit. I am perfectly willing to admit, do admit, shamefacedly though it is, that I have made many mistakes. I beg your forgiveness for them. Perhaps in the heat of argument and under conditions that existed, I have done things that I condemned in others. Am I the only one? Can you say you are clear? I am not going to say that I am clear, brethren. I am going to be frank and confess that the question of deciding where I would go when the division came was one of the most serious and heart rending decisions this boy ever made. I am perfectly frank to admit that had my own personal feeling directed me, I would not have gone the way I went. But; I went the way I thought was right. I was actuated by love of principle and not by admiration for men. I was honest, I was earnest, I was conscientious. I would rather labor today and spend the rest of my life working to get brethren together, even though we must look over our irregularities--we have got them brethren, on both sides--than to spend it in any other way in the world.

R. E. WILSON: I want to ask Brother Collings a question. Are you willing for this record to show that this committee puts the construction or Article 21 of making it mean “minor points?”

J. L. COLLINGS: I absolutely will not submit to this committee putting any other construction on it because that is the construction put on it by the committee of last August.

R. E. WILSON: That satisfies me. I am sure that from the discussion we have had the record will show that, that is the understanding of the committee, but do we not want to make this an act of the committee.

C. H. CAYCE: I rise to a point of order. All of this discussion is entirely irregular, as there is no motion before the body. If you want to discuss the matter as to whether the committee go on record as interpreting Article 21, let some committee member make a move to that effect.

Moved by C. H. Cayce, seconded by R. E. Wilson, that the committee go on record as accepting the explanation given by the committee on August 24 and 25, 1926, assembled in Dallas, Texas, that Article 21 as recommended by that committee, had reference to matters they considered minor and which pertained to the troubles we were trying to adjust in Texas.

H. G. RICHARDS: I wish to amend Brother Cayce's motion by striking out everything after the word “minor”; it is not our province to state whether they are major or minor matters.

C. H. CAYCE: That motion was to adjust differences and get together what was known as the Richards and Newman factions. If we make that elimination, then I shall withdraw my motion. Those are the differences we met to consider in August; these are the differences we have met to consider at this time.

H. G. RICHARDS: Maybe I misunderstand Brother Cayce; if so, I am ready to withdraw my amendment. Did you intend that language to teach that the matters which were being presented were minor matters, or that it just applied to the minor matters we were discussing in Texas? Did you mean to convey that all the matters that existed between the Newman and Richard factions were minor matters?

C. H. CAYCE: I will give this explanation of your question. I consider every point of difference between the Richards and the Newman factions as either a misunderstanding or a minor point of difference.

H. G. RICHARDS: Are you sure, though, that you know all the existing difficulties in Texas? There might be some things of which you are not aware, and you would not be qualified to say that they were minor matters until they were examined to see whether major or minor. We may introduce something here that you have never heard of, and you would say at once it is a major or fundamental matter; then you would be hampered by our previous resolution.

C. H. CAYCE: I am speaking of their differences from a doctrinal standpoint.

H. G. RICHARDS: This says “the matters.”

C. H. CAYCE: Evidently the putting of this motion before the body brings out plainly before you the fact, stated by Brother Collings of the unending discussion which would follow as to what was a minor or a major difference. I am of the opinion, therefore, that the thing for us to do is to take up any local matter for adjustment at any particular place, leaving the revision of the wording of any article alone; then when we have finished with these things, if we want to go on record as to the interpretation of that August meeting, we can do so.

J. L. COLLINGS: There is a motion before the house, and a second; there is a motion to amend, but no second, as a motion without a second is lost, it is up to us to decide whether we want to accept an interpretation that we ourselves in last August put upon the wording of article 21. I am ready for the question.

H. G. RICHARDS: I oppose the idea of saying; that all these matters between the Newman and Richards factions are minor ones, without first investigating to see if they are; it might be I would agree that they were, but I would not say so before investigating.

C. H. CAYCE: For that reason I suggest that the proper thing is to let the Article alone until we have finished with the other matters.

H. G. RICHARDS: You do not mean to say though that it might apply to minor matters now and major matters later.

C. H. CAYCE: No, sir. We cannot read that motion so many times as to misconstrue its meaning. I will read it. There are two things in it; the first refers to points that are minor, the second, to matters of difference between the Newman and Richards factions, not things happening in Georgia. My reason for putting that in the motion is that over in Georgia they have what are known as the Progressive Baptist. They have good ideas, but there is a division there. They took the recommendations of the Dallas convention and tried to apply them. That is why we want to go on record that this does not apply to anything but this trouble here.

H. G. RICHARDS: I want to ask your construction on that. You do not mean by this all matters which might exist would of necessity be minor matters.

C. H. CAYCE: No, it does not say so.

J. W. HERRIAGE: I believe Brother Cayce's motion is in accord with the question, and his explanation at the August convention. There is another word in that statement that likely you did not get the meaning of. It says that pertains to the troubles we are considering.

Motion Carried.

DR. W. W. FOWLER: In order to get down to business in this matter, I suggest that we now proceed to have this committee advise the Dallas church what she shall do concerning the local situation; that in order for this committee to arrive at an understanding we have the clerk of the church come with the church book and read the action of the Dallas church at the time the trouble occurred, and then have any rebuttal testimony you desire come before the committee, and then let the committee tell us what we shall do in order to settle the matter. There is no one in Texas or in the United States any more earnest in this situation than I, if I know my heart. There is no one more anxious that we live together in peace than I. But it should be done in an orderly way. In away that our brethren in the future cannot come back and say “there is disorder in Dallas--in Fort Worth.”

MODERATOR: I cannot see any reason, foundation, or excuse for entering into any local investigation without first having agreed upon the principle by which those troubles can be adjusted. First, I want to say that Old Baptists have never been in the habit of receiving excluded members and unless we can reach a point of agreement in this, it would do no good to proceed with the local trouble. I am one man ready to go to record as saying I cannot and will not receive the work of a man who has been scripturally dealt with and excluded from the Old Baptists, whether on my side, your side, or the other fellow's side. If it is a proven fact that a man has been taken up on a personal charge by his church and scripturally dealt with and excluded, I say his official capacity to function stops right then. I make these remarks to get your minds centered on the principles of merit to come before this body for consideration.

J. L. COLLINGS: Personally, I am absolutely in harmony with your statement. There is a man (indicating Elder T. L. Webb) and there is no other living man of whom I think more today, in whom I have more confidence as a man, as a child of God, as a minister of the Gospel of the Son of God, and yet the church with which he was identified at one time divided and one side excluded the other and they went for some years in that condition, both functioning as churches. Today they are receiving each other's work. In 1913 Elder Newman was present and moderating for a church in Mills County, which had divided with twenty some odd on one side and perhaps fifty on the other. I was a member of the committee on that occasion and we recommended that these brethren confess their faults, forgive each other, receive each other's work and live together in peace. They did it. I could point to many instances of just this nature. We have one here in Dallas. Brother Fowler will remember I begged that there be no division in this church, in the hall where the meetings were held; I was honest, earnest and sincere; I loved the cause, and I knew what division meant not from experience so much as from observation.

H. G. RICHARDS: If Brother Collings or anyone else can prove to me that the peace move in Texas or anywhere else depends upon overriding gospel churches, trampling over their God given right to discipline a man for advocating heresy, I must oppose the peace move. We do not know what expression a brother might have used. He may have used the rankest kind of words that would teach the rankest heresy. I believe we should hold as many church rights as we can.

DR. W. W. FOWLER: The suggestion that I made, if I were on the committee, I would put into a motion. Having been in the peace now from the beginning and trying to act as editor of the Glad Tidings, and having heard the sentiments of our brethren throughout the state, I know the situation. If we expect to settle this and come together in peace, we must straighten out this local situation in Dallas and Fort Worth, and we had just as well face it now as later. The records, the church books are here, the Article over which Brother Miracle was excluded and the clerk of the church is here. If we can bring it before the committee and if this committee and any church in Texas will prove to the Dallas church she made an error, she is willing to retract. We do not want to be hard on anyone. We want the churches brought together in peace. There is the West Texas Association, East Providence, Unity, Red River, Pilot Grove, and part of the churches of this association that will not go into this union, unless these things are straightened up. If we cannot make that much sacrifice, we had as well dismiss this meeting and go home. How much are we willing to sacrifice for the sake of peace? We are willing to acknowledge we might have been hasty. Two or three members have been baptized, one preacher ordained and perhaps something like that in Fort Worth and perhaps in some other places. If we are not going to make that much sacrifice, as honest men, nothing can be accomplished here.

J. L. COLLINGS: I want to say in the first place that I hope I have said nothing that would lead any of the brethren to think I had any idea of taking away from the church its right to govern its members. It is the only body in the world that has a right to govern its members, but we have not been practicing that in Texas in the last ten years; that is the point I am making. It is our failure to practice that which has caused this trouble.

In answering Brother Fowler I want to say that he is right when he says that we had just as well face the music in Fort Worth and Dallas .If we cannot settle our trouble--and the rest of the brethren cannot agree, until we do---there is no use of laboring further. I am representing three churches; one is my home church, Lone Pilgrim, Erath County; another Mineral Springs church where Elder Newman's membership was when this trouble started. I have instructions from those two churches; then there is the Alexander church. It did not have any conference at its last meeting, but a few of the brethren got together and said that so far as they knew, that church is a unit on what was done in August in Dallas; that, while it was going to be hard to get some of the brethren to fully acquiesce in receiving all the works of the other side, they believed they could make satisfaction that way, but were absolutely opposed to surrendering their official work. So brethren, if I have to enter into this discussion with the understanding that before peace can be made we must surrender our official work, I had just as well go home.

H. G. RICHARDS: Who had the right to say whether Elder M. W. Miracle was a heretic?

MEMBER: That church.

H. G. RICHARDS: When they said he was, and excluded him, who had the right to take him up?

J. L. COLLINGS: I am going to admit that Elder Miracle used expressions that he should not have used, but I am going to say that Elder Miracles' expression was not half so much opposed to the teaching of the Bible as were some of the expressions used on the other side. Are you going to demand that they be corrected too?

H. G. RICHARDS: I want to demand that you produce them in writing in order that we all might have the benefit of them.

J. L. COLLINGS: We can produce them in writing; I am not here for that purpose. I have told you that my fighting is over. I will not consent to stay here and argue such matters: I will labor with you as long as is necessary toward bringing about peace. But I want to say that the churches I am representing today are not in favor of surrendering their work.

R. E. WILSON: May I say that much of this discussion is to my mind cut of order. If I understand the call of this meeting, it was for the purpose of going into and adjusting local irregularities. Brother Fowler is willing to go into that; Brother Collings, I am sure, if he will look at it for a moment, would be willing to bring the record and lay it there.

DR. W. W. FOWLER: I am willing to go back over the work I have done since this trouble, and baptize again all I can and let somebody help me, if this committee says that the official work should be done over. I am willing to do it.

R. E. WILSON: I believe that it is entirely out of place for one to rise and say what he will or will not do. If I understand it, the committee is here to pass on the matter and to form recommendations. If this committee passes on this matter and I can possibly see that they are right, I am going to abide by it.

MODERATOR: I suggest that the discussion be closed unless there is a move and second on a particular matter.

H. G. RICHARDS: I would like to speak for one moment. I believe it would be entirely out of place to go into these local troubles; we should be able to agree on some basis of settlement which the different factions might use to settle their disturbances. I suggested before that where members have been excluded and have been gathered into so-called churches, we just ask them to go and satisfy the church that excluded them. If they are willing to recognize the r work, I would be willing to do the same; and if they do require them to re-baptize those people and do again their official acts, I would say this was the thing to do.

C. H. CAYCE: I want to ask for a few moments to call your attention to one or two points: first, that insofar as conditions in Dallas are concerned, if the two parties with whom we are having to deal, both claiming to be the church in Dallas, adjust their differences and come together in a way that is satisfactory to them, the Baptists everywhere else ought to be satisfied with it. That being true, I am going to suggest to you, before we take another step that when we undertake under present conditions and circumstances to take up the matter of Dallas church and her past procedure, we are making a mistake. We are not called here by Dallas church. If these two parties claiming to be Dallas church, will submit a proposition each to the other, calling for a committee not connected with the matter to come here, hear the evidence on both sides and tell them what to do to adjust their differences, they will be making some progress; but how many of this committee present are there who have not had some hand in this misunderstanding? In the next place if one party here felt as Brother Fowler's church demands that the other party do over the official work done since the Dallas trouble, then the Alexander church, I believe, would' have the same right as pastored by Brother Collings to demand that those do their work over, and so there would be work to do over on both sides, because both factions have received excluded parties and recognized them. Now, perhaps some of you have read in the Primitive Baptist the account of the getting together of two factions, known as the Flint River Association in South Georgia last year. The basis of agreement upon which they come together was entitled “Gospel Terms of Peace.” This same agreement basis was originally used in Georgia in the Flint River Association in 1905 under the title of “The Hassell Basis of Peace”. It was identical in wording and changed only in title. In May of 1905 some of the churches of Flint River Association, which had been divided, accepted that Hassell Basis of Peace and came together at Trinity Church; there were some other churches, known as the McCann faction, that did not come in, and right there was a dead line clear across the State of Georgia. Perhaps you could come from one church to another in, Texas and then jump over into Florida, but where you reached the line in the Flint River Association, there you would stop. It was a dead line. So they went from one side to the other and were received on confession of faith. There was one church in the McCann faction, so a brother told me, which was constituted absolutely of members excluded from the original Flint River Association, the Oak Grove church. I went down there with this proposition, the Hassell Basis of Peace, called Gospel Basis of Peace I visited the churches in Flint River Association, the McCann faction and the other faction and they unanimously adopted it under the heading “Gospel Terms of Peace” which included a mutual: confession acknowledgement for wrong, mutual forgiveness, red, rotation to fellowship of those excluded, and a recognition of them,

J. S. NEWMAN: I have not been having very much to say, but I want to tell you what my churches of Southern Texas said to me before I started to this meeting. They said, “We have agreed upon the Dallas recommendations. We have all endorsed them, including Article 21. Article 21 was explained to them just as it is explained in the report of the August meeting. My people told me, “If those who oppose us require us to repeat our works, don't you do it.” That is where you will find me planted today. The expression that you accuse Brother Miracle of making, that was unsound, how is it that some of you have failed to remember that he went back into the same paper and made the wrong statement right?

H. G. RICHARES: May I ask if you can produce the evidence to that effect?

J. S. NEWMAN: I read it just before I started from home. I don't think I have it with me. It is absolutely true.

J. L. COLLINGS: As editor of the paper at that time, I will say that, that explanation was made. As to whether his explanation was satisfactory to you brethren I do not know and will not try to say, but the explanation was made.

DR. W. W. FOWLER: If I rightly recall, he did make some explanation but it was after he was excluded.

J. S. NEWMAN: I understood from the remarks of Dr. Fowler that his church would not be satisfied unless those that they excluded repeated their works. If that is what he said--if that is what he meant I heartily concur with him that we had just as well close the meeting because we are not going to do that. No one advocated the whole man doctrine then, are not advocating it now, so it was a misunderstanding, and you brethren proceeded to nonfellowship churches and nonfellowship brethren for something that none of them ever avowed. Now in the event that no one taught or believed the whole man doctrine, where is the vital difference? The only route that you brethren have to prove that Joe Newman or any other man ever advocated the whole man doctrine is to join the Armenians when they say that the old Baptists preached babies to hell. Ask one of them if they ever heard an Old Baptist preach that; they will tell you, “No”. Ask them why they say they preach it, and they will say, “because of our interpretation of something that you said,” Is that fair? Brother Mahurin, if you tell me you don't believe something, I am too much of a gentleman to tell you that you do believe it. I am not guilty of that. I can show you brethren statements in history over the signature of Old Baptists that are more strongly in favor of the whole man doctrine, than anything ever seen in any of my papers. I have got the goods with me if you want it read.

H. G. RICHARDS: Do you endorse them?

J. S. NEWMAN: I didn't say I did. I didn't say I didn't. I merely state it as a matter of record. I can show you a statement in the old London Confession of faith with foot notes of the Fulton Council over the signatures of C. H. Cayce and T. L. Webb that has more whole man doctrine in it than you ever saw in any expression over the signature of J. S. Newman, and if it is called in question I can read it, for I have it with me here. It claims that man is sanctified throughout. Do you brethren believe that? Is that the whole man doctrine? Now, don't select J. S. Newman to condemn for that. Be consistent in your condemnations. Condemn the Baptists of the United States; don't just select me and make a scapegoat of me and condemn me for subscribing to something that Baptists have always contended for.

H. G. RICHARDS: When you all signed that call for the Dallas Meeting, you said the whole man doctrine is “heresy”--and those who advocated it should be dealt with. I am very sorry now to see you get up at this meeting and defend those who advocated it. If you didn't advocate it, that is all right, but please don't go to defending Brother Miracle, who said man was changed in his completeness in regeneration; and that not a man in Texas advocated the whole man doctrine, when I can show in black and white a man who said that man was born again in his entirety in regeneration.

J. S. NEWMAN: I have a perfect right to refer to those things; I did not refer to them for the purpose of defending Brother Miracle, but to call your attention to it because he apologized for it and you still hold it against him. I do not defend the whole man doctrine. I cannot define it and there is not a man here who has a definition for it, who knows what it is; it has not been defined.

DR. W. W. FOWLER: I want to state that we are not getting anywhere the object of this call by Elder Newman's churches was to try and put into application the principles of the Dallas recommendation and to straighten out local trouble that stand in the way of union. If it can be proven to the satisfaction of the church in Dallas that there was a mistake made, we might get somewhere. They are open to conviction. This is a test case; if this can be settled, others can be settled. I want to say frankly that unless this present effort results in some good, I do not believe we who are here this evening--unless it be some of these younger men--will live long enough to see the Old Baptists reunited. I have spent money, time, labor and effort, devoting it all to the sacred cause, hoping we would come together in peace. Unless we are willing to sacrifice something for it, we need not expect it. Unless the motion is put before you, and we proceed to take some action and find out definitely whether Dallas church erred or not, we can do noticing. We are here in answer to the call, with the church book and the records. If we are not willing to take this committee's decision on it, we will ask for another committee.

J. L. COLLINGS: I would like to make one suggestion. In the first place, the Dallas church has not called for this meeting on either side. My understanding of the practice of the brethren is that where a church was divided and both factions united in calling for a convention to get their advice, they met for that purpose. If Brother Fowler's brethren have called you together for that purpose, I do not know it. If I understand Brother Fowler, there is one way and one way only that we can get together, and that is for our brethren to do over their work. Now it is not my individual work that I regret to give up because, while there have been some baptisms I have not baptized a member for the church at this place. I have assisted in the ordination of one minister. I was among the representatives, I believe, three churches that took part in the ordination service. I would willingly submit to what this body of men said do, but I know how my brethren stand. Another thing I want to call your attention to: Brother Miracle is dead and gone. He cannot come before you and say, as have many of us here, “Brethren, I made a mistake,” His tongue is silenced. Personally I am not going to dig that matter up. You brethren can if yon wish to. As editor of the Primitive Baptist Signal I did not want a heretic on my staff. I visited Dallas church to find out if that was what he was. They didn't prove it to me. And when he made his explanation, which Brother Fowler says was after they excluded him--and I cannot say whether it was or not--he absolutely satisfied me that he was not. Had he believed in or advocated the whole man doctrine, I would have cut his name off the Signal Staff in the twinkling of an eye. We are doing wrong today to accuse him of believing the whole man doctrine when he disavowed it while he lived.

DR. W. W. FOWLER: I wish to correct Brother Collings. I did not say that would be required to settle this matter. I said that, that would settle it, but we would leave it to this committee to say what should be done.

LEON H. CLEVENGER: I would like to speak a moment on this question for two or three reasons. I realize what human nature is and the closer you get to a thing the more it obscures other things. While I realize that I am just a boy and do not know nearly as much as the great majority of you here do about these things, yet I have this advantage, that I never even read the Trumpet nor the Signal, and didn't read very much of Brother Collings's paper during the first part of this, and therefore knew nothing of those things. Another thing, and you all know it, if you will think about it; the future of the Old Baptist church in Texas lies in your hands, with God's blessings. You are too close to it, your passions and memories are too closely stirred; there are things that some can see and others cannot, and that others can see and you cannot. Now I know something about the Old Baptist Church and its customs, and I have been wondering if you could make a recommendation like this,--that the factions of the church of Dallas call both sides together, settling their questions themselves. Ever since I have been affiliated with the Old Baptists I have had the idea in mind that each church was a sovereign within her own rights and had no right over another church; that being the case, you cannot really decide those things, but if Brother Collings's church and Brother Fowler's church come together they can decide their own individual case and can say whether their works should be done over or not, having those details before them. We must not forget, we are not the only generation. Our hairs are getting white, the sun is going to go down after a little and the old church shall be given over to the generation following. What are we going to give them? The church never was perfect. You will have to overlook some things. You will have to forget some things that are too close to you.

E. C. MAHURIN: I have been referred to personally; I took no offense at it; it is perfectly all right. Brother Newman referred to a statement I made in the Baptist Watchman that was erroneous. I immediately made acknowledgements for that statement. He and Brother Sarrels were fixing to have a debate over the question, and Brother Sarrels came to me and asked me to make a second acknowledgement for it, and I did. Now, I think brethren that there is a difference in a man who makes a wrong statement and, when his attention is called to it, readily makes his acknowledgement, and a man who after making the statement and having his attention called to it time and again, persists in that wrong statement. Now, if Brother Newman didn't believe the whole man doctrine, and didn't believe that the expressions he was using taught the whole man doctrine, how easy it would have been for him to have left those expressions off! Doesn't it look as though he should have, when that was what our brethren understood the whole man doctrine to be? Elder Newman called on Elders Dunn, Richards and others to point out the man in Texas teaching the whole man doctrine, and they made plain to Brother Newman that, although he did not say that the body was made spiritual, his contention that the body was changed in some sense in regeneration was the thing they understood to be the whole man doctrine. It seems to me that those brethren made plain to him what they understood the whole man doctrine to be. Webster says that a heresy is an erroneous teaching of the Bible. And now I say with all good feeling for Brother Newman--I have no enmity against him--that is the thing that brought our trouble about. I feel this way. Our brethren who stand upon the principles which Brother Newman now says are sound and good, if they are the principles that have been taught and practiced by the Old Baptists from the day the church was brought into existence in this world until now, they will be the principles of God until the end of time--and I do feel that our brethren had the God-given right to contend for those principles when they did it in the right spirit. Now this is not a personal matter. As long as it was a matter between Elder Newman and his brethren, it was nothing more than a personal matter between them; but, when the church of God took the matter in hand and acted upon it, is passed from the hands of those brethren into the hands of the church, and those churches will have to be satisfied before good order can be had.

J. L. COLLINGS: I am not going to try to defend Elder Newman, but I am going to try to correct a few mistakes made by Brother Mahurin about the churches taking the matter into their own hands. I happened to be moderator for Elder Newman's church when the transaction he speaks of occurred. The church at Mineral Springs asked the churches where those brethren belonged to send them with the evidence that J. S. Newman advocated the whole man doctrine. It stood ready to try him. With the exception of two cases, Mineral Springs church received letters from those churches, signed by the moderator and the clerk, denying that their members had ever accused him of advocating the whole man doctrine.

H. G. RICHARDS: Please state the two exceptions.

J. L. COLLINGS: Elders W. H. Richards and R. A. Biggs.

H. G. RICHARDS: I beg your pardon, while you are on the floor and discussing this phase of the question, please also state what these particular churches said; it is very important.

J. L. COLLINGS: Brother Biggs and Brother Richards both went to Elder Newman and they settled the matter personally. That is what the brethren told me.

H. G. RICHARDS: May I correct you? I happen to know the reply the Rule church made. When they received this letter they sent a letter to Mineral Springs church--I was a witness--in which they said that an article which appeared in the Baptist Signal of a certain date in which Elder J. S. Newman, after enumerating some sins such as running horse races, drinking whiskey, cursing and such as that, said, “Hamp, I am absolutely dead to these things, soul, body and spirit.” They wrote to Mineral Springs church and said, “We believe that teaches the whole man doctrine.” I just state this for the record.

J. L. COLLINGS: The next correction I want to make is of Brother Mahurin's statement that he could not receive the work of excluded members. He has done it and is doing it today, as many of us are; that is what we are contending, brethren, that we should treat all alike.

J. S. NEWMAN: I want to speak a few minutes. When this thing first began--this excitement over the whole man doctrine, I repeatedly called on those that were having the most to say against the whole man doctrine to point out the man that was advocating it, and that I would use my influence in having that man's church to deal with him. I stated I did not think it was the business of preachers to deal with preachers, and be running around publicly denouncing each other; that if someone was preaching the whole man doctrine, if they would come to my home church with the evidence that I was the man, that my church would deal with me in the event that I was guilty of advocating the whole man doctrine. My church wrote letters to those churches asking my accusers to come with the evidence. When our letters first reached those churches, the churches all charged Mineral Springs church with preferring charges against their brethren. As we understood it they had been accusing me of advocating the whole man doctrine. My church in her next conference--and I have it here in black and white--informed those brethren and churches that she had nothing in the world against them. As we understand it, members of your churches have accused a member of our church with advocating the whole man doctrine. Mineral Springs church says, “We don't believe that doctrine,” and offered to deal with me if the brethren would come up face to face like men and introduce their testimony. What do you suppose we received in answer to that--Brother Webb, pardon me, God knows I love you--after we understood Brother Tommy had accused me he stood up in San Antonio church and told the brethren that he never accused me of preaching it. We received that. Brother Redford's church did the same thing: Elder T. A. Dunn's church did the same thing; Elder J. A. Goodwin's church did the same thing; Elder J. S. Griffin's church did the same thing; Elder J. G. Webb's church did the same thing. Now, what did we do? After those brethren had avowed that they never had accused me of advocating the whole man doctrine, what did my church do? She sent an acknowledgement to all of those churches, and all the churches accepted our acknowledgement except Valley Springs church and the church at Tioga. Those two churches then instituted dealings with my church and with me for accusing them of saying that I preached the whole man doctrine. We finally adjusted that satisfactory to the two churches. What more do you want? Why didn't you come? Why did you go around the country and accuse me of advocating the whole man doctrine, and when my church called upon you to come up and introduce testimony, why did you say you never had charged me with doing that?

Now, (to Elder H. G. Richards) about your father. I know more about that, Brother Hard, than you do. Elder W. H. Richards, R. A. Biggs and myself met in Alexander, Erath County, and settled our disturbances, made acknowledgement to each other. W.H. Richards and J. S. Newman made their acknowledgements to each other. Now, why did that letter reach the church at Rule? What you said is the truth--I've got it here in black and white--it was because I failed to get to my church in time to get it stopped.

This is no way for Old Baptists to do. I look upon this as a shame and disgrace to the Old Baptists, going back and digging up these things puts me in mind of a man getting up in the pulpit and talking about his wife and his little family fusses. Just as certain as you proceed in the course you are in now, you will never get anywhere. This is no way to adjust matters like this. One says, “I excluded you fellows, and I want you to acknowledge what I did.” That is wrong. What are you going to do with Elder S. L. Rives? You go to Bethlehem church at Roby and that church will tell you he is excluded. Where did he go? Back to the church that turned him out? He did not. Did it have the right to exclude him? Who has S. L. Rives? Where is he today? What about R. P. Littlepage? Because his home church refusing to endorse the San Antonio Council he got up and quit Little Flock church at Tahoka without saying a word to the church; went down and joined a sister church on confession of faith. Some of the brethren went down to see about the matter and he told them, “I quit long ago.” Then when the fuss came up about Hamp Richards, at Rule, what was the result? The church of San Antonio turned him out; where is he? Is he with you all? Brother Poe sitting there knows and he knows that I know--he stands excluded from one of our churches. I don't say it was just or unjust. I've an idea about these things. If you want to dig them up, I am at your service. I'll gladly serve; I can show a lot of things on your side of the proposition. If you want peace, we are ready to endorse the recommendations of the Dallas meeting, and we will have one of the grandest meetings in the world. Dr. Fowler's church book showed W. M. Miracle was excluded; go to the other side and the other church book will show that you are turned out yourself; Go to our church book and it shows that T. L. Webb was excluded from San Antonio church. Go over on the other side and that church book shows the other side has turned out some of us. Another thing the brother said, “I admitted that I preached unsound doctrine.” I did not do it. I admitted I used unsound expressions--and where's the man that hasn't done that? If I understand it correctly, E. C., you said one time that if a man in body served the Lord your pants did too, because they got wet. I saw that in the paper. You took that back though, didn't you?

E. C. MAHURIN: Yes, sir.

J. S. NEWMAN: I am going to accuse you of believing it, anyway (laughter).

J. A. MOORE: I thought when I came to Dallas that we were coming here to labor together in a brotherly way, and to try to come to a better understanding of these differences that have separated us in the past. I am just as much opposed to receiving excluded members, as anyone, whether the church acted right or wrong. Churches make mistakes. But let us refrain from indulging in these remarks we have been making.

S. B. KUYKENDALL: I understand the call was for us to meet and try to adjust our differences. We are willing to do over all the work we have done. Brother Newman, are you willing to do that?

J. S. NEWMAN: All the illegal part of it, yes, sir.

E. C. MAHURIN: I wish to say that if there is anyone present who drew the conclusion from what I have said that I was in the flesh and that you were, I beg your pardon. I have been absent and did not hear all of Brother Newman's speech but understood he said our churches were receiving excluded members.

J. L. COLLINGS: I said that you had and were today receiving members excluded from our churches.

E. C. MAHURIN: I couldn't say she had received any members directly excluded from Brother Collings' church. But the churches my church is identified with possibly have done such a thing where those members were excluded for contending against what they believed to be the whole man doctrine, but if we have received a single member of that or any other church whose conduct was immoral, we would appreciate the name of that member and the evidence so that we might discipline him. I remember that way back yonder we had a division of the Missionary Baptist and they did what Brother Newman says the two Dallas churches did. The Old Baptists excluded them and they excluded the Old Baptists. The same thing happened with what we call the Absolute Brethren and our brethren, they excluded us and we excluded them. Now, Brother Cayce asks me in his paper who is it that is going to sit as judge and going to do this work over again. I might turn and ask him if he would receive the work of the Extremists, the Absoluters, and I am sure from what I have heard that he would say so. Who is going to sit as judge in the matter?

LEON H. CLEVENGER: Because we are not getting anywhere I would like to get this before the meeting, and we could make a motion of it: “We recommend that the divided churches use every effort to get together on a mutual understanding and let them say, each in its own place, what official work must be done over.” Would you be willing to bid them God-speed. I would like to have a little discussion on this line.

C. H. CAYCE: I would like to give you a little history. In 1742 John Whitfield, an Episcopalian, came to the United States from England and engaged in holding protracted meetings. He held a protracted meeting in Boston. At that time there was but one body of Baptists in the United States and they were called simply the Baptists. Some of the members of Boston church were favorable to the Whitfield revival and engaged in it, and because of that they were withdrawn from by the Baptist church in Boston. Possibly a year later they gathered themselves together into a church and called themselves the Separate Baptist church, as distinguished from the regular Baptists that had excluded them. The others were designated as Regulars. These Separate Baptists had ministers sprung up among them and went out in every direction preaching; so did the regulars. They came down into the Virginias and Carolinas, both factions and organized churches. The Separates and the Regulars had no affiliation with each other. A proposition was made in the Carolinas between the two parties to unite. The Separates refused to unite because they said the Regulars had baptized a lot of people in unbelief that were unregenerate. So the regulars baptized again those that had been baptized before they were born again. They did not rebaptize those that had been baptized, who were regenerate. The fact that they baptized those who were regenerate did not invalidate them: if so, when they rebaptized these people they were just as bad off as before. On the other hand the Separates could not baptize them because they started as a split-off bunch at Boston. There was a bunch of people without baptism and no way under Heaven to get it. But the Regulars, did reimmerse those who were willing to go under the water again. That did not make good the baptism they administered to God's children after they had immersed those folks in unregeneracy. That was good without it, or else it was no good afterwards. Then the Separates accepted them and they came together and organized the Kehukee Association and accepted each others work. Not a word was said about doing over, the work done. The disorder there was as bad as any you have here, and, if that did not destroy the validity of the baptism administered by the Baptists in the Kehukee Association, then neither will it hurt the validity of baptism for you today to do the same thing. If that destroys the validity of the baptism for you today here, then it destroyed the validity of baptism back there; and if it destroyed the validity of baptism of the Kehukee Association then there isn't an Old Baptist church in the Union today that has got it. If the old Kehukee Association was organized on principles unholy and God will not recognize them, then God never did recognize the old Kehukee Association, and you sprang from something that God never recognized--and I am going to say that He is recognizing us very little in the division and strife and discord we have, and if we expect God to recognize us we must quit our foolishness and get together. Let me call your attention to one thing an irregularity is one thing and a gross disorder is another; a thing may be irregular and yet not be disorderly. The ordinances of the Church and the validity of those ordinances does not rest in man but they rest in the Church of God. The inspired apostle said to the church of God at Corinth, “Keep the ordinances as they were delivered to you.” Suppose that we were to preach here at the First Baptist church, this Missionary Baptist's church, and after the preaching someone would come up and ask for membership in this church and these Missionary Baptists would receive him, and when they received him would say to Brother Fowler, “Will you please take this party down into the water and baptize him?,” And suppose he would do that (not meaning to intimate that he would); I ask you, would you accept it as gospel baptism? Why wouldn't you, there is nothing the matter with the administrator; he is an ordained preacher from the Old Baptist church. This is the reason, just because it was done for the Missionary Baptists; it was done for them and by their authority and not by ours.

H. G. RICHARDS: I want to ask this question for my information: suppose Brother Newman's church should have the pastor of this Missionary church came over and baptize some people for him; would that be orderly baptism?

C. H. CAYCE: I would say I do not know that it would be absolutely regular; there would be a question as to whether it was really valid or not; it would be irregular. Suppose that the State of Texas should have a man accused of murder, and that it is the office of the prison warden to turn on the electric current. If the man is found guilty and placed in the electric chair and the warden turns on the electric current and he is electrocuted, is it the warden they takes the life of the man or is it the state? It is the state that electrocutes him and it is always so recorded, State versus John Doe.” not the warden against the man. But suppose someone else should pass along and turn that switch, the man would die just the same but it would be irregular.

On motion and second, meeting adjourned until 8:30 o'clock A. M. February 23rd.

 

 

FEBRUARY TWENTY-THIRD, 1927

Meeting called to order by Moderator at 8:30 a. m.

On roll call by clerk all members were present excepting Elders J. S. Newman and T. L. Webb.

On motion made and seconded J. L. Collings and H. G. Richards were appointed to go and look for the two absent members.

Prayer by Brother H. G. Ball.

 

DR. FOWLER: I would like to make a motion that there be certain regulations adopted by this committee regarding the length of time allowed for speeches and the number of speeches allowed for each speaker. I am making this suggestion in order to facilitate matters.

C. H. CAYCE: First, Dr. Fowler is not a member of the committee and therefore cannot make a motion; secondly, I am not in favor of the motion at this time for the reason that I have a matter to present, the discussion of which I would not like to have limited, due to its importance. After its discussion I would be in favor of such a motion.

DR. W. W. FOWLER: I stand corrected and apologize for offering the motion.

LEON H. CLEVENGER: Because of the lack of progress yesterday I would like to move this morning if not out of order, that our Moderator be instructed to adhere strictly to rules of discussion and that he set them forth allowing no irrelevant discussion of subjects, but that he being a man capable of moderating, we proceed under his direction, speaking directly to the point and under rules that he may put forth for our endorsement.

C. H. CAYCE: I wish to object to that as a motion because in the first place it reflects upon our Moderator.

H. G. RICHARDS: I concur in Brother Cayce's statement. If any brother feels that any speaker is making his talk too lengthy he may rise to a point of order.

Elder T. L. Webb entered the committee room.

MODERATOR: As Moderator I hold that discussion of any subject, in the absence of a move and second, is unparliamentary and therefore I will not permit any discussion of a question before it is properly brought before the committee. I am going to suggest that we have read to us some principle by which to be governed, or that we have a move and second made on some point that embraces our conditions and the things that concern us as a people in order that this may come properly before this body.

On motion of R. E. Wilson, seconded by L. J. McCarty, Dr. J. T. Watson and Elder O. F. Dearing were admitted to the committee room, to speak before the committee only on unanimous vote of the committee.

Elder J. S. Newman entered the committee room.

C. H. CAYCE: I wish to present for the consideration of this committee the following recommendation:

“We, your committee, realizing and recognizing the fact that in the unholy war which brought about the present condition of affairs and division among us, both in and between churches and associations, there were irregularities, hasty action taken and wrong things done and said on both sides and, in view of the fact that it has been the practice of our people all alone in the past in cases of division, for them to mutually confess their wrongs and to come together in peace, WE THEREFORE RECOMMEND that in this present division either in churches or associations, those of them who desire peace and union to be restored mutually confess all errors, wrongs and mistakes, and mutually forgive each other and agree to bury the past in oblivion, and to come together in peace and fellowship, recognizing each other's official work and endeavor to strive for the things that make for peace.

FURTHER WE RECOMMEND, that, if some churches are divided and thy cannot agree to come together on the foregoing recommendation without special and particular investigation of their local condition, then the two factions agree between themselves to call for a committee of brethren from outside of the State and who are not direct parties to the division in this state, to come and hear the evidence on both sides and recommend to them how they may adjust their differences and get together.

WE FURTHER RECOMMEND that, where parties have been excluded for immoral practices and received on confession of faith, such patties shall he required to go back to the church where they were withdrawn from and make satisfaction there for restoration, but a reconciliation of our people and their coming together is necessary first in order to an adjustment of irregularities of this kind.”

And to move its adoption.

Motion seconded by J. A. Moore.

H. G. RICHARDS: I was absent when the recommendation was read and ask that it be read again and explained by Brother Cayce.

Recommendation reread by C. H. Cayce.

J. W. HERRIAGE: I will ask Brother Cayce if he will explain what he means by “this present division”; does he mean the division that has occurred between the Richards and Newman elements once know as the Webb and Newman elements, or does he mean to embrace in that statement the work and irregularities of the Fatalists, the Absoluter, Predestinarians--those who believe God predestinated all things?

C. H. CAYCE: I mean the division between these two factions we are laboring to get together. This meeting is not between our folks and the Morgan folks, the Absoluters, the Two-seeders, but between what are called Elder Newman and Richards factions. If an offer should be made in the future for a union between our folks and what is known as the Absoluters, that would be worked out on its merits, but it is not concerned in this. We cannot lay down something to control a situation arising in the future because we cannot tell what may happen in four years from now. Suppose some Missionary Baptists should adopt articles of faith like ours and want to joins with us what would be necessary? We are not here to adjust such matters now. Those people have nothing in the world but what the world has and the world has nothing but what they have. As a body of people they have lost the marks of identity as we understand the teaching of the Bible.

J. W. HERRIAGE: I asked this question not for my own benefit but for the benefit of our brethren who are here. Your explanation is satisfactory to me; if there are those here who are not satisfied, kindly speak up.

H. G. RICHARDS: If this motion does not have added to it some explanatory clause I will be forced to oppose it because I happen to know on good authority that the Newman faction has within its borders, or at least is affiliated with churches who have in their ranks some Absolute Baptists, Fatalists, and that brings the question to an issue before us this morning. I think we should have some explanatory clause that nothing in this shall apply to receiving the work of churches which have adopted or approved in anyway the whole man heresy or the absolute predestination of all things; where members have been excluded for contempt of the church or some little thing like that. I should not oppose receiving them; but if there has been a charge of heresy against a member, and he has been excluded from an orderly church for heresy or for immoral conduct, I shall insist that there be a clause inserted respecting the right of that church in so excluding him. Now can we afford to tell an orderly church, which has excluded a man for heresy, that it must take him up or ought to receive him and his work when the church of Jesus Christ, the home church is to be the sole judge of whether the man is or is not a heretic? I believe it is the church of the man's membership that should be the judge of that and where the church to which a man belongs says he is a heretic and excludes him, I am not willing to say that, that church shall receive him back without proper acknowledgement to the satisfaction of the church. This is true also in the case of a personal charge for immoral conduct. If this clause is inserted in the recommendation I will gladly subscribe to it.

J. S. NEWMAN: I want to say that I heartily endorse the instrument introduced by Elder Cayce. I would not dot an ‘I’ or cross a ‘T’; it is exactly the recommendation sent out by the Dallas council in August, by it we stand. It is the only means on earth to get together. I want to say once for all, brethren, I do not now and never did believe the whole man doctrine. I have come to you with my gray head bared and offered to get on my knees at your feet and have plead with you to forgive me for my unguarded expressions; you have failed to do it; now how can I satisfy you when you absolutely say by our acts that you are unwilling to accept my acknowledgements? Didn't my church offer to deal with me?

H. G. RICHARDS: No one has charged Brother Newman's church of being in heresy, or it or him personally of advocating the whole man doctrine.

J. S. NEWMAN: You mentioned my church and mentioned my name in connection with it.

H. G. RICHARDS: I just said this, that I believed a man's church was the only body qualified to say whether or not he was a heretic.

J. S. NEWMAN: That is the point I was getting at.

H. G. RICHARDS: I did say this, that I had pretty good evidence that there were in churches affiliated with Elder Newman and his people who had more than one member who are what I believe to be Fatalistic Baptists admitted into a church organized by a Fatalist preacher since the division of the Baptists. That was my statement; I did not charge Elder Newman with having within his own church Baptists who are Fatalists or Whole Man people.

C. H. CAYCE: Right here I want to ask this question; is there a church that any of you know anything about in the State of Texas or out of it that has said by her act in conference that she believed the whole man doctrine?

H. G. RICHARDS: A Church may say it believes the whole man doctrine by actions as well as words, for instance, a man might be charged with teaching the whole man doctrine and he might teach what we would agree was that doctrine and for the church to justify that man when other churches came in and called their attention to the fact that he was advocating this heresy, would be just the same as their avowing heresy itself, in my judgement.

J. S. NEWMAN: May I ask Brother Richards a question? He has repeated that statement several times and for my personal information I want him to tell what man that was dealt with.

H. G. RICHARDS: Which man are you speaking of?

J. S. NEWMAN: Of the man to whom you had reference just a moment ago as having been talked to and dealt with by his church.

H. G. RICHARDS: I am not charging you with this or your church, but you did advocate this and if your church did, then you should not object to this proposed clause. If you have done it, let us face the music; if not then a true principle on it will only justify you.

J. S. NEWMAN: Do you know of anything of that kind?

H. G. RICHARDS: Not first-hand, but I have gospel evidence from truthful brethren. W. J. Hull did it over in North Texas; both factions agreed to leave it to a body of brethren. They came in and found: Brother Hull had advocated that doctrine. The Baptists in that section of the country withdrew from him and then you affiliated with him and recognized him as being in line with your church. Isn't that a fact?

J. S. NEWMAN: As to that transaction up there I knew nothing personally about that. I could tell what the brethren told me, but I am not going to do that; there is no use of it.

H. G. RICHARDS: I have the act of the church right here saying the body was changed in regeneration. I will read it:

“Resolution of this church, New Hope, on Saturday before the first Sunday in April, 1911. After preaching by Elder W. J. Hull, New Hope church was called in conference. Call for the peace of the church, all in peace. Miscellaneous business called for, when a letter from New Providence Church was called for and received, charging one of our members with advocating the whole man doctrine, and after investigation find that doctrine has not been preached in our stand by any of our members or pastor. Therefore we pass the following, declaring nonfellowship for the whole man doctrine and will not allow it preached in our stand. We believe that man in soul is radically changed in the new birth and that the body is influentially changed in the new birth, and will be radically changed in the resurrection and request that this be published in the Trumpet.--(Signed) W. J. Hull, Moderator and J. E. Schrimsher, Clerk.

REMARKS: Elder J. A. Webb after the Dallas meeting adjourned kindly sent to Elder Fowler a correction of Elder Richard's statement about the trouble in New Hope church mentioned above, and has supplied the word “Radically” instead of “vitally” in two places. It might also interest the reader to know that Elder Hull was not, at the time that Elder Richards says “The Baptists in that section of the country withdrew from him,” a member of New Hope church, nor was he a member of the church before this or after so far as the records show. He was a member of the church at Mesquite, Texas, and only pastor of the New Hope church. Then it might interest you to know that New Hope church had excluded two members for falsifying in connection with the Hull affair, and that these two members with a few others of New Hope church were recognized as New Hope church by some at the Baptists of North Texas, and that one of these brethren has been ordained as an Elder and has been preaching with them for several years. The other is still in Northern Texas, and we are informed has membership among the Webb brethren.--J. L. Collings.

E. C. MAHURIN: I am opposed to the recommendation proposed.

DR. FOWLER: Will you state briefly what your objection is to the recommendation so that it can go into the record?

E. C. MAHURIN: I will do the best I can. This recommendation says that we confess our wrongs one to another and I think we should do that without a recommendation. But I just cannot get it in my mind that we can walk over the action of that church in North Texas and take over the work of those members as orderly work. Where members have been excluded from a gospel church who have been dealt with gospelly, I cannot take their work. On the other hand I want to make plain that, where our brethren who have contended for sound doctrine on regeneration, contending for the principle that we all here this morning say is the truth, and where what is called the Newman churches have the majority and excluded those brethren for that cause, and no other cause, I am unwilling to demand of them that they do their work over, because they were acting faithfully and contending for a fundamental principle of God's word. But if we have a member in our ranks who was excluded for any immoral conduct, or any other thing unbecoming of a christian, we are ready to discipline him, no matter what church excluded him. If you brethren representing the Newman churches are not willing to concede that, what is the use of our remaining here?

R. E. WILSON: I am going to assume the authority to state for Brother Newman and Brother Collings that they are not willing to knowingly harbor in their churches a character that has been excluded from what is known as the Webb or Richards faction for immoral conduct if that charge can be substantiated. Are you, Brother Collings?

J. L. COLLINGS: I would not for a moment.

J. S. NEWMAN: I would turn them out and get rid of them.

R. E. WILSON: I am sure I can truthfully state for what is known as the Richards Baptists that we are not willing to harbor in our ranks a person excluded from the Newman Baptists for immoral conduct or violation of the discipline of the church, if the charge be substantiated.

I want to ask Brother Newman and Brother Collings this question: should the statements of Brother Richards regarding the Absoluters or the man who avows that God predestinated sin, be proven, would you harbor in your ranks such a character--would you not be willing for that member to be disciplined for that heresy?

J. S. NEWMAN: Surely we would not harbor him.

J. L. COLLINGS: If I can I want to make myself plain. It seems that so far I have been unable to do so; I would to God I could enable my brethren to understand me. If we have a member in our church, in the church of my membership or that I am serving that has been excluded for misconduct--immoral conduct, and you will point it out to me and the church of my membership, I will prefer charges against that individual and will ask the church to set him free. If it is a church that I, am serving I will call that church's attention to it, and tell them what I think their duty is, that is as far, brethren, as I can go, except this, that if it is a member of some church that is distant from me, and my attention is called to it and my advice asked I will say, “Brethren you owe it to yourselves and the church of God to get rid of that member.” That is as far, brethren, as I could go.

Two other points: I am going to make this statement and I hope you can understand me. I do not believe, I have never believed, I never expect to believe the whole man doctrine. I believe it is a heresy; and if there is a member in the church of my membership that believes it and you will furnish the evidence to that effect, I will be the one to prefer charges against him, and we will try the case. If there is a member in a single church I am serving and you will furnish the evidence that he believes the whole man doctrine, I will advise the church I am serving to deal with him, and if they do not I will cease serving them.

S. B. KUYKENDALL: There were objections to amending Article 21 of the Dallas recommendations which most all of them signed. Why not all agree to it and let us finish this up and all abide by it, and to do away with all the excluded members, all of that is embodied in it. Are you willing to do it?

J. L. COLLINGS: I am

J. S. NEWMAN: I am. 

J. A. MOORE: If I understand Brother Cayce's document motion to adopt which I seconded, I understand that it covers the very same ground as the history that he gave us on yesterday of the Baptists when they first came to the United States. It seems to me the adoption of this and then adhering to it will settle the matter forever.

J. W. HERRIAGE: I am not willing to go down on a single principle embraced in the Dallas recommendations, where it is definitely, “minor points” as all of our brethren understood it, and the principles set forth here by Brother Cayce; if there is one item in it that differs from Article 21, I would like, to know what it is. If it is in direct harmony--while it may express more fully and be more elaborate regarding the principles--then why not adopt it? Then those other items Brother Cayce has drawn up here reach the home troubles and state a principle by which those local troubles can be adjusted. Now I am going to ask you a question and then we are going to have the question unless the move and second are withdrawn; Are you are willing for Brother Cayce to write an item in connection with what; he has here embracing precisely what he preached last night on excluded members or churches excluding their members and that stood excluded and couldn't he recognized by churches elsewhere?

Now in reference to that New Hope trouble, I want to make this suggestion; I was familiar with that myself. I am of the opinion that when you go into that matter you will find that W. J. Hull was tried at this church and pronounced an innocent man while his membership was at another church. I am of the opinion that when you get right down to the substance of the matter you will find that those brethren that went there and served as a committee embraced a principle of doctrine that you cannot stand by and I am not willing to stand by it, and that is this: that in regeneration the spirit of man receives the power to afterwards keep the body under subjection. New Hope Church has passed out and gone; the principles live, however. There is not a question but that W. J. Hull used unsound expressions.

MODERATOR: If there is an old Baptist here that is not willing to endorse what Brother Cayce preached last night, when he said that if Fordyce church were to exclude men they have the exclusive right to discipline them and when they do that they should stand excluded everywhere, or in other words, that the Old Baptists everywhere should endorse and approve and stand by that--I would like to hear from him. If you brethren are all willing to stand by that, why would you object to that being written in here?

J. L. COLLINGS: That is in Article 22 of the Dallas recommendations.

J. W. HERRIAGE: I am going to tell you that if a church in Texas excludes a member and does it righteously, he need not come to us for recognition, we will not give it.

J. L. COLLINGS: Would it prove beneficial if Elder Cayce could show his motion is in harmony with articles 21 and 22 of the Dallas meeting, and also in harmony with the acts of our people in ages past? I am satisfied myself but for the benefit of some I would like to hear that.

MODERATOR: We would like to hear it.

C. H. CAYCE: Before speaking directly with reference to showing the harmony of what I have written with articles 21 and 22 of the Dallas August meeting, I want to make this statement: I believe the Brother Moderator said that if a church excludes a brother righteously, he need not come to his church for recognition. I want to add this much to that; in behalf of the little church at Fordyce, where my membership is, that if your church excludes a man, either righteously or unrighteously, he need not come to Fordyce and ask for membership.

MODERATOR: I endorse that.

C. H. CAYCE: If he owes a debt he owes it to your church, if you have him charged with something that he does not owe, your church is the place to go to get the charge cancelled, and not to Fordyce. It isn't theories that we have to deal with but it is facts. We have to deal with the facts as we find them, and not as we think they ought to be. Now, what can we do; we want to remedy these things, to adjust these irregularities that we have got, there is but one way and that is to mutually confess our wrongs forgive the past, and come together in love and peace, and then endeavor to engage no more in such unholy wars of words, misunderstandings, and irregularities.

Article 21 of the Dallas recommendations of August reads: --”When members of a church, or when local churches divide on a question of doctrine or practice, and become alienated, refusing to affiliate with each other, both claiming to be the original church: if they retain their identity in other points they may become reconciled and reunite by a confession of error or errors, by either or both parties, wherever such errors exist and the official work of both parties during the alienation be recognized as valid.”

I can cite you more than one ease where just such a division as this occurred and they came together and recognized each other's work. That is true in the very organization and constitution of the old Kehukee Association the mother association of all the associations and churches in the South and Southwest. Let me go over some of that; that association was constituted of churches from the Regulars and Separates. What was the origin of the Separate Baptists? That question would naturally arise, and what was the origin of the Regulars? In 1740 one John Whitfield, an Episcopalian, came from England to the New England states and held a revival in Boston. Some of the members of the Baptist church in Boston joined in that revival and was favorable to it; others opposed it, which resulted in a division. About one year later those favorable to the revival and participating in it organized themselves into a church, separated from the Baptist church and were withdrawn from by them. Preachers sprang up among them and they designated themselves as Separate Baptists to distinguish themselves from those opposed to the revival. Then those Baptists opposed to it called themselves the Regulars. Preachers went out from both sides establishing and organizing churches. They organized churches in the Virginias and the Carolinas. The Kehukee Association, the churches there both Separates and Regulars--some made a proposition to the others that they come together and organize an association; the Separates objected to a union with the Regulars because of the fact that the Regulars had baptized some in unbelief; some unegenerated persons and would not agree to unite with them until they corrected that irregularity. The Regulars finally did rebaptize as many as would submit, but while they were doing that they did not rebaptize those that were immersed by them after regeneration, while this irregularity was going on. Now, if that irregularity in baptizing people in unbelief invalidated their work, when they rebaptized them it wasn't any account because the work was irregular. On the other hand, if the Separates could not administer baptism because they sprang from that split-off party in Boston there was somebody without baptism and nowhere in the world to get it. Take that horn of the dilemma and we have lost out and none of us have got any baptism. On the other hand, if the Regulars had not lost their authority to baptize, and could administer baptism notwithstanding that irregularity, when they united with he Separates and formed the old Kehukee Association and the Separates were in such gross disorder that a union with them would put the Regulars into disorder and thereby invalidate their official work, then when they united the whole thing went into disorder and none of them could administer baptism; and if this is the case, the truth of the matter is, that there is not a church or an association in the South or South west but what if you trace them back you will find comes from the old Kehukee Association, then none of us have baptism. There is absolutely no escape; these are facts, not theories, and when facts come in, arguments cease.

If you will produce one single instance on record in history to show where they have ever come together, where they have been divided, and adjusted their differences by requiring their official work to be done over, I will withdraw my motion and will not recommend the Baptists anymore to do that. Brother Newman, you have read histories, do you know of any such instance?

J. S. NEWMAN: No, it is not to be found.

C. H. CAYCE: Then for us to say now that they must come together and do over their official work is to set a precedent, and lay down a principle for our children and our grandchildren, to point to as being different from that which the Old Baptists have done all those ages on record prior to this time. If we should put such a principle before our children and grandchildren, whenever they would have a division in a church or an association it would make it a matter that would be so hard for them to adjust that they would never come together. Brethren, I cannot afford to do it.

But on the other hand, if we should accept this proposed recommendation and recognize each other and live in peace, the Baptists in Louisiana will accept it. Why, because they did the same thing, except the Morgan element that is there. The Baptists in Arkansas except the Morgan element will accept it. It will be universally recognized in Tennessee, by the Baptists in Kentucky, and by the Baptists in Mississippi and in Alabama. It would be universally accepted in Georgia, Florida, the Carolinas and Virginia, because they settled the same way. It would be universally accepted by our brethren east. Are we going to refuse to settle upon a principle in a way that our brethren all would recognize? They settled that way in Arkansas, Tennessee, Georgia, Mississippi, and Ohio. I was present about the year 1907, at a meeting of the Whitewater Association which I mentioned in August; they had been divided for twenty-five or thirty years on the Means question, each faction claiming to be the Whitewater Association. At the one hundredth anniversary of the organization of that association I was present and for the first time in that twenty-five or thirty years these divided churches met together in one body, held the Whitewater Association and not a word was said about doing over any work.

H. G. RICHARDS: I agree with most of Brother Cayce's statements, but I believe that these instances he has cited have not been the regular practice of the Baptists in all ages of the world in eases of fundamental departure but they have been irregularities. Now, I want to point to the regular policy of the Baptists. I am going to read a statement of Elder Lee Hanks:

“It has been the custom of our people so far as my knowledge extends, that where there have been divisions among the Primitive Baptists and all on both sides hold to the fundamental principles of the doctrine,” (then after naming the fundamentals and adding Godly deportment he continues) “to recognize each other's official work during the separation. Repentance has been all that is required. If a church should go into such gross disorder as to lose her identity in faith or practice, then they would cease to recognize her official work.”

Another published in the Gospel Messenger over the signature of G. W. Stewart: “When a church has been labored with and withdrawn from by orderly churches, after that time all her church acts are illegal, including her conferences, administrations, ordinations, constitutions, baptisms, etc. But if she desires afterward to regain her identity and be in fellowship with orderly churches, she can do so representing and rejecting her own illegal works or acts.”

Brother Hassell endorsed that position with the following: “Such has been the general course of our churches in regard to such serious departures from New Testament faith and practice as if persisted in, would unchurch a church.”

I am only asking you to insert in this a simple clause stating that we do not ask our brethren to receive the official acts of the church if that church has departed from a fundamental in doctrine or practice.

R. E. WILSON: If I remember correctly I asked Brother Collings and Brother Newman if they would willingly harbor within their ranks an individual who believed that God predestinated sin. If they state to this committee that they are not willing to do that doesn't that cover the very things Brother Richards is contending for?

J. W. HERRIAGE: There is one important point to be brought out now and I am going to do it by introducing this question. I want to ask Brother Richards and those on the Richard's side if they mean to charge the Newman element with departing from the fundamental principles upon which the Old Baptist church stand.

G. C. MAYO: Taking your definition of fundamentals, I do.

J. W. HERRIAGE: Do you charge the Newman people with having departed from the fundamental principles upon which the Old Baptist church stands? That is the question. I want to lay a premise here; heresy is one thing and fundamental principles of the Bible is another. The fundamental principles of the Bible are the doctrinal tenets taught in the Bible. I am going to ask this of the Richards people; I do not propose to recognize and endorse a body of people that is called Primitive Baptists who has departed from the fundamental principles of the Bible, and I am going to demand of those of the Richards side that they produce evidence that the Newman people have done that. I ask the Newman people, do you charge the Richards people of having departed from the fundamental principles taught in the Bible?

J. S. NEWMAN: No, we do not.

J. L. COLLINGS: We never have.

J. W. HERRIAGE: If our people and the Newman people have always stood upon the fundamental principles of the Bible, I want to know upon what grounds one can demand the other to do over their works? I want to make this statement. I have corresponded with Elder Mahurin and many of our brethren on this subject. I met them face to face at Waxahachie and told them there, and reassert the statement here, that if they will prove that the Newman faction has departed from the fundamental principles of the Bible, I am down and out and I will not recognize the Newman people.

H. G. RICHARDS: You ask if we charge the Newman people with having departed from the fundamental principles. Do you mean as a body?

J. W. HERRIAGE: Yes, sir.

H. G. RICHARDS: We do not as a body, but I do charge that according to my understanding of the matter, if you are going to force me to make a charge on the knowledge I have, I should have to say that, in taking up a member who had been excluded from an orderly church on heresy, that would be departing from a fundamental principle.

J. W. HERRIAGE: Haven't Brother Newman's folks answered repeatedly that if the facts were established that they had a member of that kind in the body they would exclude him?

H. G. RICHARDS: What they have said here personally is what I want to see put in the record. If they are willing, where a man is excluded on heresy, to require that member to go back to that church and make satisfaction, then that would be all right, but to gather that man up, in my opinion, is a fundamental departure, and if I absolutely knew that was the truth of the matter I could then charge a fundamental departure, and I could charge others in localities here and there. But if the facts exist as I see them it would be a mighty small percent; however, the principle is just as great. Brother Newman, are you willing to have that embodied in this recommendation, that you agree to reject all work that has been performed by churches up to that time existing in a state of heresy?

J. S. NEWMAN: Surely.

H. G. RICHARDS: That is all I want.

 

G. S. MAYO: I would like to ask if the whole man doctrine would be a fundamental.

MODERATOR: It is a heresy, but never was taught in the Bible.

G. S. MAYO: If the doctrine of the Bible as taught there is a fundamental, and we leave the principles of the Bible and advocate the whole man doctrine, wouldn't that be a fundamental departure?

MODERATOR: For a man to depart from the fundamental principles of the Bible or the Old Baptist church is to repudiate them. A man may hold to every fundamental principle of the Bible and yet go into heresy on other lines.

G. S. MAYO: Here in the sixth article you say:--”We regard as heresy the following and urge that all who advocate such should be scripturally dealt with: The Non-Resurrection Doctrine; Two Seedism; Arminianism; Whole-Manism; No-Manism and the predestination of sin and wickedness.”

I have in my possession a letter written by Elder J. W. Herriage in which he said that Elder J. S. Newman advocated heresy and the whole man doctrine. That is my reason for asking the question and for contending this was a fundamental departure.

DR. FOWLER: There is such a thing as brethren being too exacting of each other. Brother Newman has repeatedly said he used expressions that were unsound. What more can we ask? In his answer to my letter regarding Article 21 he uses this language:

“On page 16 you can see that; this question was discussed and answered. If a church had members in it that actually believe the two-seed, non-resurrection doctrine and that church should exclude them, and this two-seed element should declare themselves the church I do not think that should they confess their mistake in advocating two-seedism that the church or any of her work could be received for the reason that the church did not divide when she excluded those who were advocating the above heresy.

“If any one has been preaching that in regeneration the sinner is changed externally just as he is internally and there was such Baptists that held this view of regeneration and they were excluded by their respective churches and then set themselves up as a church, I do not think it would be good order to receive such a church or any of its work even if the church so-called, should see her mistake and turn from it.

I believe it would be all right to include heresy in this recommendation and if I were a committee-man I would move to that effect. Right here in Dallas at the time we excluded Elder Miracle we believed he was advocating the whole man doctrine; we might have been mistaken, and if we can find out that we were, there will be nothing in the way of receiving what has been done since then. I do not believe we should be to exacting; controversies had arisen and we resented what the other fellow said we were quick to jump at it. I know that should any man on either side of this proposition now write and put in the paper what Elder Miracle wrote, he would be dealt with. Now the question is, was Elder Miracle at that time so wrought up that he wrote these things and was sorry for them afterwards? We tried to get him to say so and he refused. He was in the flesh then, and I might have been, but I don't think I ever have been unless perhaps for a little while at a time. We plead with that brother to modify his statements so that we would not have to exclude him. I am willing to waive it all and to say that we all make mistakes, that we may live in peace.

J. L. COLLINGS: As pastor of the other side, I want to say this. I am the man who allowed that article to go into the paper; when I read it, I said to my self that if I understood what Elder Miracle meant I did not believe the position he was taking. When I heard there were charges against him at this church I came purposely to hear the evidence. I wanted his explanation; he gave it to me privately, and I was satisfied. Brother Cayce's motion here covers this case. If this committee cannot agree and the two bodies call a committee of disinterested brethren of three or more and they come and hear this evidence and say that Elder Miracle was guilty of believing and advocating the whole man doctrine and should have been excluded I will say, “Do away with every bit of Elder Miracle's work.”

DR. FOWLER: Will you not modify that and say just “advocating”?

J. L. COLLINGS: Just this objection to that amendment. I may say something that may make you thing I believed a thing; yet I may not believe that and I may not be advocating the very thing you claim. Now another thing; as I am serving that church, if there is one member in it that was excluded for believing and advocating the whole man doctrine, which I brand as a heresy and a dangerous one, and this committee will tell us so, I for one am not in favor of retaining him.

Moved by C. H. Cayce, and seconded that J. T. Watson be given the floor. Carried.

DR. J. T. WATSON: First I want to endorse Brother Cayce's statements especially with reference to the historical part. Also I want to endorse what Brother Newman has said regarding conditions. Then later it was mentioned, in regard to excluded members, that article 22 took care of that. I have my private opinion about it. Article 22 says, “No member excluded by a local church should be restored by any other local church. And when such practice has been indulged in, a reasonable adjustment satisfactory to both churches should be made.” That has no reference to brethren who are excluded and who do not join another local church but who step across the street and set up a church claiming it as the church, and who go so far as to restore members excluded by us three years ago before for lying, joining secret orders, etc. Now, I am familiar with the Miracle matter; he never was charged with believing the whole man doctrine; he was charged with two counts, one, for advocating unsound doctrine. We did not state what it was except to refer to the article in the Baptist Signal of January 4th 1926; and one for contempt of the church. We may have been wrong in excluding him but it has been ten and a half years and no one has offered to show us that we were wrong. If this is done we will call a conference tonight to right it. Elder Miracle said at one time, “They have put things in there I did not write and I will go to law and make them undo it.” On June 17th he said, “I have been nonfellowshiped for the doctrine that Elders Fowler, Paine and Webb are preaching over this country. It is heresy, nothing short of it.” We labored with him. He said he could satisfy the church that he did not believe the whole man doctrine, but he did not satisfy the church. All he would say was that he believed the man was born again. Elder Collings defended him and said, “I am the editor of that paper; if there is one sentence unsound doctrine in this paper I want to know it and I am going to do it.” Dr. Fowler ruled him out of order, on the ground that there was a division between us and that Dallas church had never been questioned as being able to take care of its membership. He was excluded on July 5th. In a few months Elder Miracle and some of them set themselves up to be the church and we understood, they said, they were the Dallas church and we were not. Pretty soon they denied that we ever excluded Elder Miracle. If it is not consuming too much time I would like to show that it was considered by Elder Collings and others at that time that we did not exclude Elder Miracle.

MODERATOR: I rule in this meeting that we have not got the power and the ability to adjust local trouble and if you brethren will take this up and try to settle it yourselves; if you can not adjust it, then get much help.

H. G. RICHARDS: Let me read a proposed addition to the recommendation: “Howbeit, nothing contained herein shall be construed as endorsing the recognition of the official works of a church which has officially departed from a fundamental point of doctrine or practice and has been scripturally dropped by orderly churches therefor.”

Moved by H. G. Richards, seconded by R. E. Wilson, that this addition be made to the recommendation.

C. H. CAYCE: First I want to speak directly to this amendment. The document which I introduced and moved to be adopted is not an endorsement, but a recommendation to churches and yet I have no serious objection to adding this as an amendment. I suggest that instead of saying “endorsement” we use the words “recommending the recognition of the official work.” I want to call your attention to this point, insisting that this be added is equivalent to say that some of the churches on one side or the other have fundamentally departed and are fundamentally wrong, and if I thought that the churches known as the Richards faction had departed from the fundamental principles I would not be in favor of considering a union with them; and if you Richards brethren think that of the Newman side, I tell you candidly you ought not to be here discussing reconciliation. I want to read a little more of the article a part of which Brother Richards read. Elders Hassell and Hanks were asked by Elder J. E. Griffin to explain how two parties, both claiming to be Baptists but refusing to affiliate with. each other, on account of differences, could scripturally reunite. Elder Hassell said: “We have no divisions among the Primitive Baptists in Eastern North Carolina, and have had none since the Kehukee Association withdrew in 1827 from the New school or so called Missionary Baptists. But when there have been temporary divisions among the Primitive Baptists I think that members received during the division by either party, have generally and should be recognized by the other party.”

Elder Hassell then proceeds to discuss the object and mode of baptism which is no part of the issue and therefore omitted. So I now give Elder Hanks' position:” (Previously read by H. G. Richards).

“Now isn't it a fact, as you Richards brethren have been discussing among yourselves, that a declaration of nonfellowship was made for the idea that the body is no part of the child of God and that declaration was sent to me for publication in the Primitive Baptist. It was Elder Sarrell's church.”

E. C. MAHURIN read from original copy charge against Elder J. B. Downing.

“Whereas, Elder J. B. Downing has, in our own stand and from the pulpit of his own church, affirmed, contrary to Galatians 5:17, that it is not the flesh or physical being of man, but the sinful principle in man, that is opposed to God and holiness; and,

“Whereas, he holds that the flesh (which we know to be natural, vile, sinful, unholy, and corrupt) is an essential constituent or part of the real child of God. and,

“Whereas, there are some among us who hold that there is some kind of a change of quality or condition produced on the flesh in regeneration, we Harmony Church of Christ, believing the above named things to be heresy, do therefore solemnly declare that we have no fellowship for heresy; and hence have no fellowship for its advocates, and will not affiliate with them.

“Done by order of the church while in conference, February 28, 1914.

ELDER R. V. SARRELS, Moderator

H. H. WARREN, Church Clerk.”

---Primitive Baptist, Sept. 5, 1916.

Elder C H Cayce was authorized to correctly word the amendment to the recommendation.

Amendment carried.

Original motion carried by roll call vote.

Meeting adjourned until 2 'clock p. m.

 

AFTERNOON SESSION

Meeting called to order at 2 o'clock p. m. by the Moderator.

Motion by J. S. Newman, and seconded, that Brother Collings and Brother Fowler be appointed to superintend the printing of pamphlet containing record of meeting. Carried.

On motion made and seconded the minutes of the meeting were read by the Clerk; and on motion by Leon H. Clevenger, and seconded, minutes adopted.

At 2:15 o'clock p. m. the committee returned to the open meeting in the auditorium.

Free will offering was received toward paying the expenses of the reporter.

 

MODERATOR: Before the reading of the recommendation of the committee by the clerk I wish to say to you brethren and sisters that although there has been some sharp contention in the committee-room, yet I feel that there is a better spirit among our brethren today and invading the hearts of our people who are here than there was before this meeting began. I feel that the Lord has been with us.

C. H. Cayce, Clerk, read the recommendations of the committee, which are as follows: “We, your committee, realizing and recognizing the fact that in the unholy war which brought about the present condition of affairs and division among us, both in and between churches and associations, there were irregularities, hasty action taken and wrong things done and said on both sides and in view of the fact that it has been the practice of our people all along in the past, in cases of division, for them to mutually confess their wrongs and to come together in peace, WE THEREFORE RECOMMEND that in this present division either in churches or associations, those of them who desire peace and union to be restored mutually confess all errors, wrongs and mistakes and mutually forgive each other and agree to bury the past in oblivion, and to come together in love and fellowship, recognizing each other's official work and endeavor to strive for the things that make for peace.

FURTHER WE RECOMMEND that, if some churches are divided and they cannot agree to come together on the foregoing recommendation, without special and particular investigation of their local condition, then the two factions agree between themselves to call for a committee of brethren from outside of the state and who are not direct parties to the division in this state to come and. hear the evidence on both sides and recommend to them how they may adjust their differences and get together.

WE FURTHER RECOMMEND that, where parties have been excluded for immoral practices, and received on confession of faith, such parties shall be required to go back to the church where they were withdrawn from and make satisfaction there for restoration, but a reconciliation of our people and their coming together is necessary first in order to an adjustment of irregularities of this kind.

Howbeit, nothing contained herein shall be construed as recommending the recognition of the official work of a church which has officially departed from a fundamental point of doctrine or practice and has been scripturally dropped by orderly churches therefor. Respectfully submitted.

J. W. HERRIAGE, Moderator

C. H. CAYCE, Clerk.

ELDER H. G. RICHARDS.

ELDER R. E. WILSON

ELDER H. B. KUYKENDALL

ELDER J. A. MOORE

ELDER J. S. NEWMAN

ELDER M. W. WEST

ELDER L. J. McCARTY

ELDER LEON H. CLEVENGER

ELDER JOHN R. HARRIS

ELDER T. L. WEBB

ELDER W. W. FOWLER

ELDER J. L. COLLINGS

 

R. E. WILSON: I suggest that you state the action of the committee regarding the adoption of the recommendations.

C. H. CAYCE: Their adoption was unanimous by roll call vote.

C. J. HOLCOMB: I want to ask with reference to a church who has excluded a member for immoral conduct.

MODERATOR: I would say it was immoral for a man to become drunk, or cruel to his wife, for him to lie, to visit defamed places of different kinds, to take part in horse races, etc., and he would be required to go back to his church and make satisfaction.

C. J. HOLCOMB: I understand that, but does that give a church the authority to exclude the member no matter what the sister of brother does, if the church sees fit?

MODERATOR: It embraces nothing but immorality.

W. R. BLACKMAN: Suppose the church from which a member is excluded dissolves, and this brother or sister desires membership of another church of the same faith and order, how would he proceed?

MODERATOR: By paying the debt he owed the other church.

C. H. CAYCE: Do you mean to ask if that party had been immoral in practice and had been excluded from that church?

W. R. BLACKMAN: Yes, sir.

C. H. CAYCE: He must satisfy the orderly church. I believe it is customary in deliberative bodies that an article being read for adoption is read three times before that body. I will reread the recommendations.

DR. J. T. WATSON: It says, when bodies have been excluded and received on confession of faith. I want to ask, received by whom ?

C. H. CAYCE: I should think of course that it means, by the church on the opposite side in this controversy.

DR. J. T. WATSON: Suppose an individual is dropped from an orderly church, and should apply to another orderly church and make a statement and be received. That would not be good order, neither would the other. The recommendations do not state by whom received, and leaves a little unfinished verbiage to say the least of it.

C. H. CAYCE: It is a self evident fact that if a church allied with what we call the Richards faction excludes a man for immoral conduct, another of that faction would not have that man among them upon confession of faith. The same is true of the Newman faction.

N. O. CARTER: When it speaks of churches separating, does it say church or churches? Does it cover a division within a church?

C. H. CAYCE: You will note the wording, “both in and between churches and associations.”

N. O. CARTER: When a member is excluded for contempt of the church, and that member goes and joins another church, can his works be received when it comes back to the original church from which he is excluded say that he is a preacher?

C. H. CAYCE: This recommendation concerns only this present division, this unholy war, and other matters are not under consideration at all.

J. D. SWANNER: I want to ask, if we adopt these recommendations here how will we proceed to get together? I suppose the churches will have to take it up and act on it?

C. H. CAYCE: I can only say, so far as I understand it, that any church that endorses this procedure and is ready to settle insofar as it reaches them can adopt in their conference the recommendations, in this first paragraph if it covers their case; and the churches on the other side would then be ready to become affiliated. I mean by that the Richards and the Newman factions. I do not think that every church in the State of Texas should be required to pass in conference upon this matter.

G. S. MAYO: Inasmuch as the recommendations says it has been the practice of our brethren in the past when they have been divided, to come together and recognize each other's official work; I was just wondering--it has been the custom of the Primitive Baptists in some localities to allow their members to affiliate with the Masons, Odd Fellows, and Woodmen of the World--wouldn't it be just as good order for us Texas Baptists to throw our doors open and to allow the members of those lodges to come in and unite with us?

Another question with reference to when a member is excluded for immoral conduct and when the church officially acts as they think scripturally and he refuses to submit to the action of that church and withdrawn from for contempt in refusing to submit, where is he going? What is going to become of him?

C. H. CAYCE: Let me kindly say that is has not been and is not the general custom of the Primitive Baptists to receive, recognize or sanction the affiliation of their members with secret orders.

G. S. MAYO: It is in Illinois and Indiana.

C. H. CAYCE: It has not always been in Illinois, Indiana or Missouri. I can cite where in Illinois they excluded members for joining the Free Masons.

LEON H. CLEVENGER: As a member of a church in North Missouri almost up to the Iowa line which church has been constituted there over a hundred years, I will say that this church has never allowed its members to be long to secret orders. Will say that members affiliating with secret orders has been not a general practice but a departure therefrom.

C. J. L. BOLLINGER: I suggest that we include in there the definition for disorderly churches in order to prevent possible future controversy. For instance, I believe the Primitive Baptists of Texas denounced the doctrine of absolute predestination of all things including sin and wickedness. They denounced the doctrine that man is made spiritual in regeneration, and if the Baptists of Texas would denounce the idea that the man in body is no part of the child of God and that question might cause a confusion in regard to what is a disorderly church.

J. W. HERRIAGE: The disorderly church referred to here is stipulated in that paragraph as a church that has departed from the fundamental principles of the Bible, and that is to depart from the doctrine upon which the church of the Lord Jesus Christ stands and exists.

R. E. WILSON: From the question being asked I am confident that some are uneasy about “this awful member that we have excluded over here,” they are nervous over the idea that they are going to have to take him back regardless of his deportment or his crime. As a member of the committee I will say that I do not intend personally to impose that on anybody, and I wish to impress the thought on your mind that you need not go home uneasy about that member you excluded for immoral conduct or for a violation of the discipline of a church.

Motion by Dr. W. W. Fowler, seconded by J. D. Swanner, that the recommendation as read and explained, be adopted as the sentiment of this body. By rising vote of messengers sent by church authority, and of those unauthorized, motion carried.

Minutes of the meeting read by the clerk.

CLEVELAND GRIFFIN: Although I arrived late and did not enroll as a delegate, I would like to enroll now from South Fork Church.

On motion by Dr. J. T. Watson, and seconded, a rising vote of thanks was given to the First Baptist Church for their courtesy and kindness in extending the use of the building for the meeting.

W. R. BLACKMAN: I would like to announce that I am serving a little church in Freestone County, the home church, three miles south of Kirvin on the T. & B. V. Railroad out of Waxahachie at which the Primitive Association will convene on the Friday before the first Sunday in August, and every church that can adopt and put into action these recommendations is invited to come and be with us in a sweet, gracious meeting. I hope you will have a mind to come.

Motion by R. B. Hester, seconded by N. O. Carter that the minutes as read be adopted. Carried.

MODERATOR: Let me say that I have felt very inadequate for the duties as Moderator for this meeting and very unworthy of its responsibilities. I appreciate your expressed confidence in placing me here. I want to thank Brother Cayce for his services in the matter; I want you all to visit us when ever you can and especially to pray for us, and when you return to your homes do not forget us in Oklahoma.

After several songs, the meeting adjourned at 5 o'clock P.M.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 15 October 2008 )
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The Primitive or Old School Baptists cling to the doctrines and practices held by Baptist Churches throughout America at the close of the Revolutionary War. This site is dedicated to providing access to our rich heritage, with both historic and contemporary writings.