Sunday, March 31, 2019

In Siddim’s vale

The following hymn by Baptist minister John Fawcett appears in Hymns Adapted to the Circumstances of Public Worship and Private Devotion (Leeds: G. Wright and Son, 1782, p. 99). I have not seen it elsewhere on the World Wide Web.


Fast-Day, Feb. 21, 1781.

Gen. xviii. 32. I will not destroy it for ten’s sake.

1. In Siddim’s vale, in ancient times,
A wealthy city stood,
Fill’d with a race whose horrid crimes
Provok’d a jealous God.

2. The liv’d in luxury and ease,
In wantonness and pride;
Their filthy deeds and blasphemies
For vengeance loudly cried.

3. Yet God did lend a gracious ear,
While faithful Ab’ram pray’d;
“I’ll spare them all if ten be there,
That fear my name,” he said.

4. But they despis’d the voice of heav’n,
And harden’d in their sin,
Contemn’d repeated warnings giv’n,
Nor fear’d the wrath divine.

5. A holy God abhorr’d their deeds;
And lo! A fiery storm
He pour’d upon their guilty heads,
In a most dreadful form.

6. And crimes, alas! like theirs abound
In this our native isle!
We have been warn’d; but we are found,
Secure and thoughtless still.

7. Yet save, Great God, our guilty land,
For here thy name is known;
Avert the judgments of thy hand,
Nor pour thy vengeance down.

8. Hast thou not many children here,
Tho’ England’s guilt be great?
O hearken to their humble pray’r
Before thy mercy-seat.

9. Now, in the time of greatest need,
O let thy hand appear!
That we, from ev’ry danger freed,
May learn thy name to fear.

Fawcett, an Englishman, wrote this hymn or poem as an expression of England’s sin and guilt. Stanzas six and eight might be changed slightly to apply it to one’s own country. Here are suggestions, though another fix might serve better.

6. And crimes, alas! like theirs abound
In this our native land!
We have been warn’d; but we are found,
Wild and secure to stand.

8. Hast thou not many children here,
Tho’ full our guilt and great?
O hearken to their humble pray’r
Before thy mercy-seat.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Who Owns Folk Songs, and other music links

The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

Friday, March 29, 2019

Chick-Fil-A “set free”

Chick-Fil-A. I could eat there seven times a day
Where the people laugh and children play;
Oh, I’m in love with Chick-Fil-A.

Suddenly, I need waffle fries in front of me
With some nuggets and a large sweet tea;
Oh, Chick-Fil-A. You set me free.

The Chick-Fil-A Song by Tim Hawkins

According to a news report earlier this month, a Christian Dean at Rider University Resigned in Protest of Campus Chick-Fil-A Ban. Rider claimed “the company’s record widely perceived to be in opposition to the LGBTQ+ community” and their “corporate values have not sufficiently progressed enough to align with those of Rider.”[i]

Cynthia Newman, dean of the College of Business, announced that she resign, stating, “I am a committed follower of Jesus Christ. As such, I endeavor every day to do exactly what Chick-fil-A puts forward as its overarching corporate value: to glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to me and to have a positive influence on all who come into contact with me.”

On the heels of that, the San Antonio City Council voted 6-4 last Thursday (March 21) to keep Chick-Fil-A out of the San Antonio International Airport. (See, e.g., San Antonio City Council votes to stop Chick-fil-a from opening at airport.) District 1 Councilman Roberto C. Treviño made the motion to exclude Chick-Fil-A. He said, “San Antonio is a city full of compassion, and we do not have room in our public facilities for a business with a legacy of anti-LGBTQ behavior.”

The purported “anti-LGBT behavior” apparently is Chick-Fil-A’s positive support for traditional marriage, and donations to entities such as the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (gasp!) which also support traditional marriage. Though Councilperson Treviño said, “Everyone has a place here, and everyone should feel welcome” he and five others made it clear that Chick-Fil-A and those who support it do not have “a place here” and “should [not] feel welcome.” So much for welcoming and affirming. Just like the rest of us, intolerant people “welcome and affirm” who and what they believe in, and “exclude and deny” who and what they don’t believe in!

The case of Rider University is a private institution making a decision they believe matches their values. I disagree with their decision and values in this case. Nevertheless, it varies somewhat from the San Antonio case, which is a government entity excluding a business based on its religious values and (private donation) practices. Chick-Fil-A’s DOES NOT practice excluding anyone from buying a chicken sandwich! There is no discrimination of that sort with which they are charged. Six members of a governmental entity called the San Antonio City Council excludes Chick-Fil-A on the religious beliefs they hold regarding marriage and the charities they choose to support. Isn’t this exactly what our Bill of Rights intends to bind governments from doing? I think so; however, I believe we will continue to see an increase in governmental entities excluding businesses that support traditional Christian causes.

[i] Fascinatingly, despite the views of the high mucks at Rider, when the university polled students to ask which restaurants they would like to have on campus, Chick-Fil-A was the “overwhelming favorite”!

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Words about books

Words related to parts of or things about books.
  • acknowledgments, noun. A statement of thanks at the beginning of a book, made by the writer to people who have helped.
  • addendum, noun. A piece of extra information that is added to a book, document, speech, etc.
  • afterword, noun. Part at the end of a book that has a few final remarks.
  • appendix, noun. A section giving extra details at the end of a book, part of a book, or document.
  • corrigenda, noun. (plural of corrigendum) A list of corrections of errors in a book or other publication.
  • dedication, noun. A statement at the beginning of something such as a book or song that tells people it has been written for a person you love or admire.
  • epilogue, noun. An extra part added at the end of a novel, long poem, or other piece of writing.
  • errata, noun. (plural of erratum) A list of errors and their corrections inserted, usually on a separate page or slip of paper, in a book or other publication.
  • flyleaf, noun. The first or last page of a book that is next to the cover and has nothing printed on it
  • foreword, noun. Short introduction to a book, usually written by someone other than the writer.
  • index, noun.
  • introduction, noun. The part at the beginning of a book that gives a general idea of its contents.
  • mise-en-page, noun. (Typography) Placement on a page, page layout; the design of printed pages, including the layout of text and illustrations (also mise en page).
  • preface, noun. Introduction to a book (or a speech).
  • prologue, noun. literature a piece of writing at the start of a book that introduces the story
  • recto, noun. A page on the right side of an open book (compare verso).
  • spine, noun. The edge of a book where all the pages are fixed together
  • title page, noun. The page at the front of a book that shows its title, the name of the writer etc
  • verso, noun. A page on the left side of a book (compare recto).
  • vignette, noun. A small decoration printed in a book.

Southwest Texas Sacred Harp Convention

The Spring Session of the Southwest Texas Sacred Harp Convention is coming up this weekend, at the Bethel Church at McMahan.

For more information: Texas

Y’all come!

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Sacred Harp Markers, Almost: McMahan

The historical marker for Bethel Primitive Baptist Church at McMahan, Caldwell County, Texas does not mention Sacred Harp, but the church has long been associated with the book and music. The Spring Session of the Southwest Texas Sacred Harp Convention has met here annually since 1962, and randomly beginning as early as 1934 (most earlier records are missing). The church and marker (Marker Number 9758) are located on FM 813, about 1/2 mile west of the intersection of FM 813 and FM 86. The Jeffrey Cemetery is adjacent to the church building. This marker was apparently erected in 1986 during the Texas Sesquicentennial (150th anniversary).

Marker Text:
Bethel Primitive Baptist Church
This congregation was organized June 19, 1852, in the home of John Fleming near this site. Elders George Daniels and Reuben W. Ellis from the Plum Creek Primitive Baptist Church were called to serve as pastors by the charter members: James Jeffrey, Mary Ann Jeffrey, John M. Fleming, Abigail Fleming, Richard Cole, Sarah Cole, John B. Jeffrey, Elinder Jeffrey, Robert McFeron, and Sarah McFeron. A church building was erected at this site in 1901. Bethel Primitive Baptist Church continues to minister to McMahan and the surrounding area as it has since 1852.
Texas Sesquicentennial 1836 – 1986

Recalls Song of Other Days

“My mother sang treble. There was enough volume in he(r) dear voice to carry the part for a large class. We did not call them ‘choirs’ then. My father sang a resonant, uplifting bass.”
Recalls Song of Other Days,” Lon A. Smith, The Dublin Progress, Friday, July 23, 1926, p. 5

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

The sovereign submissive

John 18:1-14, Authorized Version (AKJV)
1 When Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples over the brook Cedron, where was a garden, into the which he entered, and his disciples. 2 And Judas also, which betrayed him, knew the place: for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither with his disciples. 3 Judas then, having received a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons. 4 Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth, and said unto them, Whom seek ye? 5 They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am he. And Judas also, which betrayed him, stood with them. 6 As soon then as he had said unto them, I am he, they went backward, and fell to the ground. 7 Then asked he them again, Whom seek ye? And they said, Jesus of Nazareth. 8 Jesus answered, I have told you that I am he: if therefore ye seek me, let these go their way: 9 that the saying might be fulfilled, which he spake, Of them which thou gavest me have I lost none. (Cf. 17:12) 10 Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus. 11 Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it? 12 Then the band and the captain and officers of the Jews took Jesus, and bound him, 13 and led him away to Annas first; for he was father in law to Caiaphas, which was the high priest that same year. 14 Now Caiaphas was he, which gave counsel to the Jews, that it was expedient that one man should die for the people.

The arrest of Jesus demonstrates:

  • His omniscience of all things, foreknowledge of events, verses 1-4
  • His sovereignty over the situation, verses 4-6
  • His protection of his disciples, verses 8-11
  • His submission to the Father’s will, verses 5, 11-13

Monday, March 25, 2019

Our Life Tune on the Harp of Ages

While searching for information on the origin of the phrase “Harp of Ages,” I found this following interesting paragraph. I do not expect this is where A. N. Whitten got his songbook title, but who knows?
Ah, it is a fearful thing to set ourselves to play our life tune on the Harp of Ages. The melody begins so soft and low in the infant’s cradle that the voice can just be heard; but it remains not always thus; alas, too often does it end in one long, harsh, discordant note. But, as I look down the flight of years to come, I think I hear the music of souls yet unknown to us, and it comes like the harmony of the gentle Zephyrs in the mild evening time, and I see the great human throng coming up the narrow way a true united choir. I see the gates of Paradise open, and behold, there stand the Heavenly band. I hear their songs still more melodious, till they thrill the very soul with joy as the two unite in one to chant their praises in the Home above forever.
Each Life A Tune,” By ‘An Unknown Friend,’ Nassau Literary Review, William E. Lupton, Editor (Volume 23, Number 4, December 1862, p. 173)

Trying to cure leukemia with leeches

No theory of government was ever given a fairer test or a more prolonged experiment in a democratic country than democratic socialism received in Britain. Yet it was a miserable failure in every respect...To cure the British disease with socialism was like trying to cure leukemia with leeches.
Margaret Thatcher, The Downing Street Years (HarperCollins, 1993)

Sunday, March 24, 2019

What a Friend We Have in Jesus

The hymn “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” was written by Joseph Medlicott Scriven. He was born in 1819 in Ireland and died in 1886 in Canada. Scriven wrote the poem in 1855 to comfort his mother during a troublesome season.

William Reynolds wrote the following concerning Scriven:
“Joseph Scriven, who lived near Port Hope, Ontario, wrote this hymn in 1855 to comfort his mother in a time of sorrow. A friend, visiting Scriven when he was ill, saw the manuscript of the poem and Scriven admitted having written it. To another friend Scriven once explained that ‘the Lord and I did it between us.’ Its first appearance seems to have been in Horace L. Hastings’ Social Hymns, Original and Selected (Boston, 1865), where it appears unsigned.” (From Hymns of Our Faith, William Jensen Reynolds, Nashville, TN, 1964, p. 224)
Reynolds follows his information with a quote from Ira David Sankey, in My Life and Sacred Songs, (1906, p. 279). I give below the hymn Sankey’s entire biography of Scriven.

In Hastings’s Social Hymns, Original and Selected the poem appeared as No. 242, without attribution. Later the song was properly attributed in Song of Pilgrimage: a Hymnal for the Churches of Christ, Second Edition (H. L. Hastings (1831-1899), Boston, MA: Scriptural Tract Repository, 1886, No. 1291, Page 446) as “Joseph Scriven, cir. 1855.” It has four stanzas, only three of which are found in most hymnals. The heading gives the scripture, “I have called you friends. John xv.15.” The meter is 8s & 7s.

1. What a friend we have in Jesus,
All our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer!
Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
Oh, what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer!

2. Have we trials and temptations?
Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged,
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful,
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness,
Take it to the Lord in prayer.

3. Are we weak and heavy laden,
Cumbered with a load of care?—
Precious Saviour, still our refuge,
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do thy friends despise, forsake thee?
Take it to the Lord in prayer;
In His arms He’ll take and shield thee,
Thou wilt find a solace there.
[3 stanzas, above, in Silver Wings, see below]

4. Blessed Jesus, thou hast promised
Thou wilt all our burdens bear,
May we ever, Lord, be bringing
All to Thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory, bright, unclouded,
There will be no need for prayer;
Rapture, praise, and endless worship,
Shall be our sweet portion there.

From My Life and Sacred Songs, by Ira David Sankey, London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1906, pp. 279-281, What a Friend We Have in Jesus (pp. 279-281).

“Thousands have been cheered in time of trouble, and so led nearer to Christ, by this sweet and simple hymn; for very few hymns have been more widely published or more frequently sung. The author was born in Dublin in 1820, and went to Canada when he was twenty-five. There he lived a useful life until his death in 1886. The young lady to whom he was to be married was accidentally drowned on the eve of their wedding day. This led him to consecrate his life and fortune to the service of Christ. Though a graduate of Trinity College and a man of refinement, he chose humble duties. One afternoon he was seen walking down the streets of Port Hope where he lived, dressed as a plain working-man and carrying a saw-horse and a saw on his mission of help. A citizen, noticing that a friend recognized him, said:
“Do you know that man? What is his name? and where does he live? I want some one to cut wood, and I find it difficult to get a sober man to do the work faithfully.”
       “But you can’t get that man,” was the reply. “That is Mr. Scriven. He won’t cut wood for you.”
       “Why not?” queried the gentleman.
“Because you are able to pay for it. He only saws wood for poor widows and sick people.”
Until a short time before his death it was not known that he had a poetic gift. A neighbour, sitting up with him in his illness, happened upon a manuscript copy of “What a Friend we have in Jesus.” Reading it with great delight and questioning Mr. Scriven about it, he said that he had composed it for his mother, to comfort her in a time of special sorrow, not intending that any one else should see it. Some time later, when another Port Hope neighbour asked him if it was true that he composed the hymn, his reply was: “The Lord and I did it between us.”

   Returning from England in 1875, I soon became associated with P. P. Bliss in the publication of what later became known as “Gospel Hymns No. 1.” After we had given the completed compilation to our publishers I chanced to pick up a small paper-covered pamphlet of Sunday-school hymns, published at Richmond, Virginia. I discovered this and sang it through, and determined to have it appear in “Gospel Hymns.” As the composer of the music was my friend C. C. Converse, I withdrew from the collection one of his compositions and substituted for it, “What a Friend we have in Jesus.” Thus the last hymn that went into the book became one of the first in favour.
   As published in the small Richmond hymnal, the authorship of the words was erroneously attributed to the great Scottish preacher and hymn-writer, Dr. Horatius Bonar. We were in error, also, in assigning the words to him. Some years afterwards Dr. Bonar informed us that he was not the author, and that he did not know who wrote it. It was not until six or eight years after the hymn first appeared in our collection that we learned who the author really was.

The music was written by Charles Crozat Converse and published in Silver Wings:  a Collection of Entirely New Sunday School Music in 1868 by Karl Reden (pseudonym of Charles C. Converse). Reden/Converse credits the source of the text as Genevan Presbyterian Church (of Brooklyn) Collection.

Other’s thoughts on What a Friend We Have in Jesus maybe be found HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE.

Saturday, March 23, 2019

John Chapter 17: The Lord’s Prayer

John Chapter 17: The Lord’s Prayer
The one who prays
These words spake Jesus
thy Son
given him power over all flesh
he should give eternal life
Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent
I have glorified thee on the earth
I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do
I have given them thy word
I also sent them into the world
for their sakes I sanctify myself

To whom he prays
thou hast given him power over all flesh
whom thou hast sent; thou didst send me
work which thou gavest me to do
O Father
Holy Father
whom thou hast given me
thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world
O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee
the glory which thou gavest me
thou … hast loved them, as thou hast loved me

For whom he prays
I pray for them
for them which thou hast given me
given them thy word
the world hath hated them
for them also which shall believe on me through their word

About what he prays
glorify thou me
keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me
that they may be one
that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves
that thou shouldest keep them from the evil
Sanctify them through thy truth
that they all may be one
they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am
that they may behold my glory
that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them

Friday, March 22, 2019

Tozer on the third stanza

One of the commonest expressions heard in the public worship service is the leader’s directive, “Sing the first, second and last verses;” or, “Omit the third verse, please.”

I suppose it is not of vast importance that the third stanza is so often omitted in the singing of a hymn, but just for the record let it be said that the worshipers are deprived of the blessing of the hymn by that omission if, as is often true, the hymn develops a great Christian truth in sermonic outline. To omit a stanza is to lose one link in a golden chain and greatly to reduce the value of the whole hymn.

The significant thing, however, is not what the omission actually does, but what it suggests, viz., a nervous impatience and a desire to get the service over with. We are, for instance, singing “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross” We long to forget the big noisy world and let our hearts go out in reverent worship of that Prince of Glory who died for us, but our sad sweet longing is killed in the bud by the brisk, unemotional voice of the director ordering us to “omit the third verse.” We wonder vaguely whether the brother is hungry or has to catch an early train or just why he is so anxious to get through with the hymn. Since all standard hymns have been edited to delete inferior stanzas and since any stanza of the average hymn can be sung in less than one minute (“When I Survey the Wondrous Cross” clocks at thirty seconds to the stanza, normal tempo!) and since many of our best hymns have already been shortened as much as good taste will allow, we are forced to conclude that the habit of omitting the third stanza reveals religious boredom, pure and simple, and it would do our souls good if we would admit it.

If it were only in our hymn singing that this spirit were found I would probably not have brought the matter up at all, but I find it in pretty near every department of the religious life. Not the doing of evil deeds only but the omission of good deeds weakens the soul and invites the judgments of God. The same worldly, impatient spirit that shortens a hymn also shortens our prayer time and reduces the amount we give to the Lord’s work, as well as the number of services we attend each week.

Let’s sing the third stanza.

Excerpted from “Chapter 34,” The Price of Neglect, and Other Essays, Aiden Wilson Tozer (1897-1963)

Thursday, March 21, 2019

A Hero in Any Language, and other links

The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

List of Sacred Harp Historical Markers

The following list links the series of ten historical markers that mention Sacred Harp in some way. Some are official state historical markers, while others were erected by other entities interested in historical preservation. They are listed in alphabetical order, rather than by the date on which they were posted.

If any reader is aware of other markers that mention Sacred Harp, I would like to know where they are located. Thanks!

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Sacred Harp Markers, Vilulah Settlement

Text on marker:
This marker is erected in memory of those pioneer settlers who laid the foundation of Vilulah Community and built its early progress upon the principles and practices of its Church.
Meeting under a bush-arbor in 1867, seventeen members constituted the Vilulah Baptist Church. They named it after the loved hymn-tune - Vilulia in the old Sacred Harp Song Book - afterward shortening the name to its present spelling.
Land was given for the church by “Uncle Bobby” Knowles. The committee appointed to choose the church name were James N. Bigbie, who lost an arm while serving with the U.S. Army in the Mexican War, and Captain William Forsythe Davis of the Confederate Army. These and the following were honored founders of Vilulah Community: Albert Bailey, who gave land for the school, Jarrett Ragan, Abner Belcher, Judge Irvine Saunders, Baal Smith, Dr. Thomas Bigbie, A.S.A. McLendon, Alexander Morgan, Andrew Blackburn, Benjamin Joiner.
This roadside park was sponsored by the Vilulah Community Improvement Club. Winner of awards in the Chattahoochee Valley Contests of 1952-1953.

This marker is located at the intersection of County Road 160 and County Road 153 at the Vilulah Baptist Church at Coleman, Randolph County, Georgia.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Bethany Baptist Church, 1853

The excerpt below from the diary of Elder Holloway Power relates the organization of the Bethany Baptist Church in Nacogdoches County. He attended an association meeting at the “north meeting house” (Union Church, now Old North Church) October 8-10, 1853. Power described the introductory sermon at the association “as a worthless a discourse as is commonly heard and far from the gospel...” On the other hand, on Sunday he “heard Elder Lucas preach a [firey] missionary discourse from Is., he had great liberty of speech and made as affecting an effort in behalf of missionism as I have ever heard...” The business included begging aid from the “S. baptist miss. society & of the State conv. of Texas” and to request the legislature pass the Maine liquor law. Because of this, Power “sat amazed to hear an asso. of baptist thus spending their strength in money & politicks” and wrote, “I returned home striped (sic) of all missionary propensities.”
[Sunday October] 30 [1853] Sunday Attended meeting at the N. meeting house br. Brittain Preached a very interesting discourse from mat 1 br. Davis followed and as br. Brittain could not stay on tomorrow it was agreed to go into a constitution whereupon H. L. Power & wife, J. Burns & wife & E. Young presented letters Some others who have not their letters present could not go in An abstract compiled by myself was offered and unanimously adopted & the Presbytery being satisfied declared us a church of Christ
31 The church met at the school house and after br Davis Preached conference was held and br. I. Fowler received by experience and baptized in the [???] we adopt the name Bethany and agree to hold our Monthly meetings on the [??] Sunday & day before  O Lord grant thy kind Providential care and in blessing bless us and glorify thy name by us for Jesus sake.
From the Holloway Lee Power Diary, pp. 149-150


  • Words in brackets [] are those which are hard to read, uncertain, or unreadable.
  • Power had been affiliated with a Bethany Church in Madison County, Alabama, so that may be the origin of the name choice.
  • Basil Eli Lucas was pastor of Union Church at the time Bethany Baptist Church was formed.
  • Bethany Church was a member of the Little Hope Association of Primitive Baptists.
  • Brother Brittain above is probably Thomas BrittainElder William Brittain was already deceased. Thos. Brittain was later active with John Sparkman in trying to reconcile the Little Hope and Mt. Zion Associations.
  • Holloway Lee Power, Elizabeth Meals Power, J. Burns & wife (possibly James & Martha Burns, buried at Old North Cemetery), and E. Young. A J. R. Burns is mentioned as a correspondent to the Union Association from Little Hope Association, October 1868, and seems to be a preacher. It is not clear whether he could be the same as “J. Burns” who was a charter member of Bethany.
  • His brother, James Isaac Power, pastored Union Church (now Old North) circa 1866-1872.
  • Holloway Bunyan/Bunyon Power was a son of Holloway Lee Power. He was born in 1834 in Alabama. After his father died, he became a pastor for Bethany Baptist Church.
  • Quote: “A man may be very tenacious for doctrine but lax in his conduct or christian walk and thus destroy all the effects of his sound doctrine.” -- Holloway Lee Powerp. 35

Monday, March 18, 2019

Words, and more words

Words, words, words, another batch.
  • à deux, adverb. For, or involving, two people; as a couple.
  • absit omen, phrase. ‘May the omen be absent’: used as an imprecation when referring to a possible undesirable event, in the hope that it will not come to pass.
  • attractionalism, noun. A system of church practice of seeking favor with unbelievers by pointing out how similar church members are to the world (as opposed to being distinct from the world), making the church attractive without focusing on sin, conviction, and repentance.
  • badling, noun. A collective term for a group of ducks.
  • dissemble, verb. To conceal one’s true nature or motives.
  • dysania, noun. The state of having a hard time waking up and getting out of bed in the morning.
  • dyspnea, noun. (Pathology) Difficult or labored breathing.
  • EGOT, noun. The Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony awards viewed as a single achievement. Also: a person who has won all four awards.
  • entregent, noun. Social interaction; also: a capacity for this.
  • heterophily, noun. The tendency of people to be drawn to those they perceive to be most unlike themselves, or of individuals to collect in diverse groups. Opposite of homophily.
  • homophily, noun. The tendency of people to be drawn to or seek out those they perceive to be most like themselves. Also: such similarities between individuals or groups. Opposite of heterophily.
  • imaginarian, noun. A person concerned with imaginary things; a fantasist. Also: one who stresses the imagination.
  • impervium, noun. A virtually impenetrable or indestructible substance.
  • jactance, noun. Boasting; vainglorious speaking.
  • keep down, phrasal verb. Stop from increasing in size or number.
  • magirist, noun. An expert in cookery.
  • papillote, noun. A small triangular piece of paper used to enclose and hold in place damp hair which has been wound into a curl; a curl-paper.
  • passeggiata, noun. A leisurely walk, a promenade, esp. one taken at a regular time.
  • questionous, adjective. Given to asking questions; inquisitive.
  • sticking point, noun. A matter on which a person will not yield or compromise; something which prevents progress towards an agreement or goal.
  • verboten, adjective. Forbidden; not allowed.

John’s baptism

Some, however, say today’s baptism under the Gospel is not the same as John’s. To try to prove this, they usually take us to the 19th chapter of Acts, verses 1-7. In this section we see Paul finding some disciples at Ephesus who had been baptized unto John’s baptism. Note: these did not say they had been baptized by John. If they were not baptized by John himself, who then baptized them? In the closing verses of the 18th chapter of Acts we read of Apollos, an eloquent man, mighty in the scriptures but knowing only the baptism of John, being in Ephesus. I do not think it wrong to conclude that Apollos immersed these twelve while he was there. Neither Apollos, nor anyone else, was authorized to continue John’s baptism. John, himself, said, “He [Jesus] must increase, and I must decrease.” He did not intend for his baptism to be carried on by any but those whom God, who authorized him, would authorize. These were the disciples of Christ who were commanded to keep on dipping in the same manner and for the same purpose they had been dipped by John. However, now there was an even greater purpose. “Him which should come after”, had already come. Baptizing in prospect of Messiah could not be done because He had come and died for His people. Now we can see how in baptism we are buried in the likeness of His death and raised in the likeness of His resurrection. It was not to down-grade John’s baptism Paul baptized these 12 disciples. They had been baptized in prospect of Messiah (Christ) after He had come, so the purpose for their baptism (by Apollos) was incorrect.
Excerpt from “John the Baptist and the Gospel,” by Robert N. Lackey, The Remnant, Volume 5, No. 1, January-February, 1991

Sunday, March 17, 2019

The Lord is the Fountain

The author of this text is Barton Warren Stone. Stone was born December 24, 1772, near Port Tobacco, Charles County, Maryland. He died November 9, 1844 at Hannibal, Marion County, Missouri, and is buried at the Cane Ridge Meeting House Cemetery at Cane Ridge, near Paris, Bourbon County, Kentucky.

Stone is best-known for uniting with Alexander Campbell and others to form the Christian or Disciples Church.   He was licensed by the Presbyterian Church in 1796, and later withdrew from them in 1804. He was a leading figure in the Cane Ridge Revival at the turn of the century.

In 1829 B. W. Stone and Thomas Adams published The Christian Hymn-Book (words-only). It contained 340 hymns. Later, Stone joined with Campbell, Walter Scott, and J. T. Johnson to produce Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual Songs, Original and Selected (Bethany, VA: 1834).

This hymn is 11s. Meter, and can be sung with tunes such as Bellevue/Firm Foundation and The Bower of Prayer. The Biography of Eld. Barton Warren Stone says that this “hymn is founded upon Ezekiel’s vision of the water, chapt. 47.” It originally had 10 stanzas, five of which are presented here.

1. The Lord is the fountain of goodness and love,
Through Eden once flowing in streams from above,
Refreshed every moment the first happy pair,
Till sin stopped the torrent and brought in despair.

2. O wretched condition!  What anguish and pain!
They thirst for the fountain but cannot obtain;
To sin’s bitter water they fly for relief,
They drink but the draught still increases their grief.

3. Glad tidings, glad tidings! no more we complain,
Our Jesus has opened this fountain again,
Now mingled with mercy, enriched with free grace,
From Zion ’tis flowing on all the lost race.

4. How happy the prophet, how pleasant his road,
When led down the stream by the angel of God,
Though shallow at first, yet he found it at last
A river so boundless it could not be passed.

5. Come all ye dead sinners, here life you will find,
Come all ye poor beggars; ye halt and ye blind;
This water has virtue to heal all complaints,
Come drink, ye diseased, and rejoice with the saints.