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HISTORY OF THE DISCIPLES OF CHRIST.

BY

B. B. TYLER, D.D.
PASTOR OF THE CHURCH OF Disciples, West FIFTY-SIXTH STREET,

NEW YORK CITY.

BIBLIOGRAPHY.

Dorchester, Daniel, Christianity in the United States. New York,

Phillips & Hunt, 1888. McMaster, John Bach, History of the People of the United States from

the Revolution to the Civil War. New York, Appleton & Co., vol. i., 1883; vol. ii., 1885; vol. iii., 1892.

McDonnold, B. W., History of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church.

Nashville, Cumberland Presbyterian Publication House, 1888.

Baxter, William, Life of Elder Walter Scott. Cincinnati, Chase & Hall,

1874. Campbell, Alexander, The Christian Baptist" (newspaper, 1823–29,

Burnet edition), Millenial Harbinger" (newspaper, 1830–70); Debate with N. L. Rice. Cincinnati, E. Morgan & Co., 1844; Memoirs of

Elder Thomas Campbell. Cincinnati, H. S. Bosworth, 1861. Crisman, E. B., Origin and Doctrines of the Cumberland Presbyterian

Church. Nashville, Cumberland Presbyterian Publication House, 1875. Errett, Isaac, Our Position (a tract). Cincinnati, Standard Publishing Co.,

1885. Garrison, J. H., The Old Faith Restated. St. Louis, Christian Publishing

Co., 1891. Green, F. M., Christian Missions Among the Disciples of Christ. St.

Louis, John Burns Publishing Co., 1884. Hayden, A. S., History of the Disciples in the Western Reserve, Ohio.

Cincinnati, Chase & Hall, 1875. Lamar, J. S., Memoirs of Isaac Erret. Cincinnati, Standard Publishing

Co., 1894, 2 vols. Longan, G. W., The Origin of the Disciples of Christ. St. Louis, Chris

tian Publishing Co., 1889. Richardson, Robert, Memoirs of Alexand'r Campbell. Philadelphia,

J. B. Lippincott & Co., 1868-70, 2 vols. ; new edition, Cincinnati,

Standard Publishing Co., 1888. Rogers, John, Biography of Barton Warren Stone. Cincinnati, J. A. and

U. J. James, 1847. Williams, John Augustus, Life of John Smith. Cincinnati, R. W.

Carroll & Co., 1870.

X

THE DISCIPLES.

CHAPTER I.

INTRODUCTION: THE MORAL AND SPIRITUAL CONDI

TION OF THE PEOPLE.

The following pages will be devoted to an account of the origin, principles, aims, and progress of the Disciples of Christ.

That the evolution of this communion may be understood in its genesis, purpose, and rapid growth, it is important to consider the moral and spiritual condition of the people of the United States at the beginning of the nineteenth century.

The moral and religious life of our fathers at the close of the eighteenth and beginning of the nineteenth centuries was very low. Unbelief in Jesus as the Son of God, and in the Bible as a book of supernatural origin and divine character, and in what are esteemed by evangelical believers generally as the fundamental facts and truths of the Christian religion, abounded. The greatest immoralities were permitted to exist almost without rebuke. The Lord's house was neglected. The Lord's day was habitually profaned. The gospel was disregarded. The mes

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sage of divine love was scorned. The Bible was treated with contempt.

When Theodore Dwight became president of Yale College, in 1795, only four or five students were members of the church. The predominant thought was skeptical. In respect to the Christian faith, the students of the College of New Jersey (Princeton) were not superior to the young men in Yale. The College of William and Mary was a hot-bed of unbelief. Transylvania University, now Kentucky University, founded by Presbyterians, was in the hands of men who repudiated the evangelical faith. At Bowdoin College at one time in the early part of the nineteenth century only one student was willing to be known as a Christian. Bishop Meade has said that so late as the year 1810, in Virginia, he expected to find every educated young man whom he met a skeptic, if not an avowed unbeliever. Chancellor Kent, who died in 1847, said that in his younger days there were but few professional men who were not unbelievers. Lyman Beecher, in his autobiography, says, speaking of the early years of this century and the closing years of the last, that it was "the day of the Tom Paine school, when boys who dressed fax in the barn read Tom Paine and believed him." Mr. Beecher graduated from Yale in 1797, and he tells us that the members of the class of 1796 were known to one another as Voltaire, Rousseau, D'Alembert, etc. About this time also wild and undefined expectations were, in many places and by many persons, entertained of a new order of things and better, about to be ushered in. The Christian religion, it was thought, would soon be thrown to one side as obsolete. Illustrations of the bitter feeling which existed against the orthodox conception of the religion of Jesus are abundant.

It is said that in the year 1800 only one Congregational

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