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Copied from "A Church In The Vale -- The Story Of Valley Springs" by Mabel Osbourn

Whole Man Doctrine - San Antonio and Temple Councils - 1913, 1914

A misunderstanding, centering around Elder J. S. Newman of Mineral Springs Church in Somerville County, Texas, arose over what was termed the "Whole Man Doctrine" wherein some advocated that man is changed in his entirety in regeneration, and eventually the Baptists were divided throughout the state of Texas. In October 1913, Valley Springs Church formally withdrew from Mineral Springs Church for a charge she had made against one of our members, Elder S. N. Redford; and which after a lengthy correspondence requesting it, Mineral Springs Church would neither sustain by proof nor withdraw.

Two attempts were made by councils to reach an understanding and so avoid a division of the Baptists, and in both councils Valley Springs Church represented. In the San Antonio Council, December 1913, which was called mainly to adjust a point of order, Brethren H. A. Joiner and J. P. Nixon were sent as counselors from Valley Springs. The division in San Antonio Church (the two sides being called the Webb and Blackwell factions) grew out of a difference over a letter from Mineral Springs Church defending Elder Newman who was then accused of advocating the Whole Man Doctrine. Points observed in the San Antonio Council, which was called by both sides, were as follows:

1. That San Antonio Church was right in insisting that if Mineral Springs Church held any grievance against San Antonio Church, she (Mineral Springs) should herself go to San Antonio Church with it.

2. That the church was in order to receive a Brother Harmon into their midst.

3. That the objections of Elder A. G. Blackwell concerning the reception of members at the June meeting were out of order.

4. That, in as much as the Conference of June meeting closed in utter confusion, the church was under obligation to rectify this before taking up other business and hence erred in having the called meeting in June for the purpose for which it was called.

The point upon which the messengers divided was "That the act of San Antonio church in the exclusion of Elder A. G. Blackwell and his followers was legal and orderly. Messengers representing twenty churches said this was right and messengers from twelve said it was wrong. Seven of these churches, after agreeing on four of the five points, and disagreeing on the fifth, took it on themselves to go to San Antonio and outline a procedure for peace which was unacceptable to the Webb faction, and so they were set aside as cut off by the seven churches. At their January (1914) Conference, Valley Springs Church adopted the findings of the San Antonio Council, and also the Biggs Proposition for Peace.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 26 July 2007 )
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