''that, in reference even to the selected tenets, the Summary in
question does not pretend to express them in the form of distinct
propositions, such as would have been required, if they had been
intended as a full and methodical Creed or Confession of Faith."
It is not a full, methodical statement. But, as far as it goes, it is
FIFTH DAY MORNING SESSION. 175
an expression of our joint views. He would, therefore, instead of
" Ecclesiastical sense," say, a " full and methodical Confession."
Rev. Dr. Bunting. â It appears, we are all substantially agreed
on the question involved in this discussion. We are all agreed, that
it is not intended to be, in a strict, formal, Ecclesiastical sense, a
Creed or Confession, â and that it is expedient to affirm that. It is
not a formal, Ecclesiastical Creed. Yet, we must guard against
those evils to which Dr. Cox, of America, has so ably referred.
You say, it is not intended to be a formal exposition. But it is
intended for something : and what it does intend, you ought to be
careful in indicating, or adverting to. I am afraid to take the
liberty of proposing anything that would retard our business : but
it does appear to me, that it may be worth while to refer it to a
Committee of five, to consider the various statements made; and
they might so bring it up in the Evening Sitting, as to meet all
the feelings expressed. If you do not consent to this, I think the
alteration is dangerous, and I shall support the clause as it stands.
I cannot open the door comfortably to so great an evil as leaving it
to be understood, that we have no profession of our belief. I think
this is necessary to the credibility of our Union, and to the efficiency
of any operations, whether in testimony to the Truth, or in conjoint
measures for the public good, to which we may hereafter agree.
It must be Love in the Truth, or it is not the love that I, for one,
should be prepared to profess.
Rev. T. Scales. â I sympathize with Dr. Bunting, and several
friends who have spoken, in the fear, lest we shall be diluting that
which is proposed as the Basis of our Union. Hereby we should
do serious injury. I accord with what Dr. Burder said, in refer-
ence to the light in which it will generally be viewed. If we take
it in its popular sense, what is a Creed, but the things most
assuredly believed amongst us ? What is a Confession, if it be not
the honest avowal of our opinions ? I am not so afraid as many of
introducing into our Basis, (which must be regarded as the bond of
Union,) those points on which we are conscientiously agreed. I
should not object to Thirty -nine Articles, if we could as substan-
tially agree upon them as upon those already carried. I think, our
agreement will give us great advantage ; and we shall be able to
go forward, with better hope of success, in consequence of the
agreement. Our friends from France will tell us, what an advan-
tage it will give them ; that it presents a refutation of the charge
brought against Protestantism, on account of its divisions. " You
say, that you boast of one Rule of Faith ; but you no sooner attempt
to apply this, than you split into endless divisions." But here you
176 EVANGELICAL ALLIANCE.
ha- i affirmative answer. We bow humbly to the supremacy of
th oly Scriptures ; we take them as our only Rule of Faith ;
a e have found out points of agreetnent, without attempting to
;ate a Creed. We have, in comparing our honest opinions,
â¢ught out a Harmony of Confessions, such as, I will venture to
m, has never been given to the World since the Canon of Scrip-
.u e was completed, â and which, I hope, will be the bond of Union
3 . the avowal of our common sentiments. I do not think we should
ome to the lowest point on which we agree, and carry it in general
terms. I think, our safety consists in the avowal of those points we
have specified ; and we should do injury, if we left people to
regard the Basis as indefinite and vague.
Rev. Dr. Beaumont. â If the change be made which is proposed
by Dr. Cunningham, you will pull down with the one hand what
you build up with the other. I think the words, " not in any
strict or proper sense," an abundant concession to the imperfection
of the Basis â or rather, I would say, to its incompleteness, I am
for no change, but consolidating and cementing these great Truths.
T. Farmer, Esq. â I did not understand Dr. Bunting to move,
though I should have been happy to second the Motion, â under the
impression, that it is of great importance to send this to a Commit-
tee. When we can discover Unity, we wish to arrive at it as soon
Rev. Dr. Hoby. I hope Dr. Bunting and Mr. Farmer will not
press their point. It appears to me, that we are prepared to go to
the Vote. I apprehend, there would be no objection to retain the
supplement as it stands. I hope no alteration will be made, now
that we have got our complete Basis. I think it almost unneces-
sary to express ourselves, even as we have expressed it in this
clause. Though I am not much in favour of Creeds and Con-
fessions, I did intend to make a Confession in some sense. I was
happy to hear the reference made by Dr. Cox, of America, respect-
ing application for membership. We should not concede the right
to any person, who will subscribe our Articles, to come into the
Alliance ; but, as our Nomination Committee suggests, enquiries
are to be made. I hope we shall go to the vote on the clauses as
Rev. Dr. R. J. Brown. â While we substantially subscribe
these Articles, the whole of this discussion has gone on the suppo-
sition, that they are not explained in that definite way in which a
Creed is expressed; and many speakers have been stopped, when
they have attempted to put anything in that shape. The whole
principle upon which we have been proceeding is, that we heartily
FIFTH DAY â MORNING SESSION. 177
subscribe to them : but, at the same time, we do not express them
in the way, in which we should put forth what is commonly under-
stood by a Creed or Confession ; for I maintain, that a Creed or
Confession implies an expression of principle, which is generally
understood by itself. I maintain that, in popular language, a Creed
does mean that which Dr. Cunningham has stated ; and when we
maintain that these Articles are not a Creed, we subscribe that
which we believe. Again, I maintain, that the prime meaning of
a Creed is a set of Articles, expressed and arranged in such a way
as this Basis is not, and ought not to be ; and, in fact, from the
very outset, it was not arranged as a Creed or Confession. That
being the case, why should there be any hesitation ?
The Chairman. â " Strict and proper" is vague â <( Ecclesiastical"
is definite. Some might say, it has a form, but it is not Ecclesias-
tical. I think, if you will get in the idea, that it is not to be
regarded as an Ecclesiastical Creed or Confession, we shall all be
ready to affirm it.
Rev. Dr. Hoby. â Its adoption is not to be considered as a right
authoritatively to enforce it.
Professor Emory. â I beg to second Dr. Wardlaw's proposition,
in favour of the word " Ecclesiastical." Though I am not tena-
cious, I am satisfied with the clause as it stands ; and I must con-
fess, that it has seemed a little strange to me, that the proposed
alteration has come from a quarter, in which great anxiety was
expressed that we should bear testimony to the Truth. After
having arrived at certain points, in order that we might make a
Confession of Truth before the World, on the ground that it would
have great weight, â we ought not then to be called upon to say,
we are making no Confession at all. We have made a Confession ;
and it appears to me, that the advocates of a change can ask for
nothing stronger than the expression, " in any strict or proper
sense." If it be the general sense of the Meeting, I am prepared
to vote for it : â but the only proper Amendment is that proposed
by Dr. Wardlaw.
After some further conversation, in which Revs. Dr. Cunning-
ham, Dr. Bunting, W. Bevan, G. Osborn, and others, took part,
Rev. Dr. Bunting moved, W. Hamilton, Esq., seconded, â
" That the Amendment of the Rev. Dr. Cunningham, together with the Supplement
originally proposed, be referred to the consideration of a Special Committee,
with instructions to report thereon at the next Session."
Rev. Dr. Beaumont objected, that this was a deviation from
178 EVANGELICAL ALLIANCE.
But, after some remarks from Revs. W. Bevan, W. Chalmers,
G. Osborn, W. W. Ewbank, John Kelly, W. France, the Chair-
man, Rev. Dr. Bunting, Rev. A. D. Campbell, Dr. Blackwood,
Rev. W. Anderson, and Rev. Dr. Carlisle, Dr. Bunting's Motion
was put, and carried.
Whereupon Rev. Thomas Scales moved, Rev. J. N. Goulty
'That the following gentlemen constitute the Committee : â
" Rev. Dr. Cunningham, Rev. Dr. S. H. Cox,
Rev. Dr. Morison, Rev. Dr. King,
Rev. E. Bickersteth, Rev. J. S. Taylor,
Rev. Dr. Bunting, Rev. Dr. Wardlaw.
Rev. Dr. Emory,
" And that the Committee retire immediately."
This was put, and carried.
Rev. Dr. Steane. â There is a Motion, that the order of the last
two Articles should be inverted.
The Chairman. â Having referred the explanatory clauses of
the Basis, I think the whole paragraph cannot be considered -as
Rev. Dr. Beaumont. â I am in the hands of the Chair.
Rev. Dr. Steane. â I have another Amendment, as to the class
of persons whom it is desirable to embrace within the Alliance.
After some conversation on the point, whether that Amendment
should be referred to a Committee, and as to the order of business,
Mr. R. A. McFie withdrew his Motion; and the Chairman pointed
out, that, though the Nine Articles and the Supplement had been
referred to the Select Committee, the Meeting might proceed im-
mediately to other business.
Whereupon Rev. Dr. Steank said, The business before the Con-
ference is the Second Proposition, page the 4th, "That the Alliance
is not to be considered as an Alliance of Denominations, or Branches
of the Church ; but of individual Christians, each acting on his own
Rev. Dr. F. A. Cox. â Every proposition that has been brought
forward to day, and almost every one in the Conference, has been
enveloped in a cloud of Amendments, which have been previously
presented so as to form matters of discussion. I have the advan-
tage of coming forward with the present Motion, without any noti-
fication of Amendment. I trust, therefore, that the Motion will be
entertained, and speedily passed.
I would, as I am not at all anxious to make a sp9ech, request
simply to repeat the proposition I hold in my hand. But I think
FIFTH DAY MORNING SESSION. 179
it desirable to make a remark : it is an important proposition ; it re-
lates to a very essential part of our Constitution ; and, I think, it is
a proposition, which, if it be entertained, will conduce exceedingly
to the strength of the Evangelical Alliance; because the proposition
is not, that we are to unite, by delegation, or otherwise, as Denomi-
nations, or Branches of the Christian Church, but in our individual
character and capacity, as members of the Christian Church in
general. This is a proposition which I entertain with all my heart ;
and which, in our very earliest discussions, was fully considered, in
reference to the grounds of this Alliance. I think it is the indi-
viduality of our Association that will tend to preserve us in our
strength. This proposition contains the very element of personal
independency. It appears to me philosophically true, that the more
we act independently, the more we shall be disposed to unite in
this sacred Confederation. On that ground, I maintain the principle
here put forth ; for it takes out of the Alliance the element of Sec-
tarianism. We are not brought together as Denominations ; we are
not brought together as Branches of Christian Churches ; not in a
delegated capacity ; but as individual Christians, whose object is to
promote, as far as possible, a Union â not of the Denominations â
that is impracticable â not of the Branches of the Church by dele-
gation â that is impracticable â but to promote Christianity in the
holiest form in which, as I apprehend, it can be at present exhibit-
ed, â namely, not by the obliteration of those distinctions which
prevail, (though to that, I own, this Alliance may, and perhaps will,
move forward at some distant period), but at present we are un-
prepared to meet on any other ground than that which is personal,
independent, and individual.
I would also add the consideration, that, though we meet as indi-
viduals, we are not of necessity bound to maintain all our differ-
ences : and the fact of our not uniting as Denominations has
this tendency ; while an association for that purpose, (could it be
formed,) would rather prevent our union, than promote it : because,
when a man comes as a delegated member of a particular Denomi-
nation, he comes with all his pledges to maintain that system about
him ; but, when he comes as an individual, he does not abandon his
Denomination ; he only moves out for a moment into this vast
fraternity and brotherhood, in order that he may investigate and
consider, â under better circumstances, it may be, â his own mis-
apprehensions. I see no reason why we should not unite on this
Now â though we unite as individuals â of course, Branches and
Denominations will still continue to exist. Nevertheless, we are a
180 EVANGELICAL ALLIANCE.
Tree, and I think a noble one, with its various branches. Our
root is love ; our branches consist in the conscientiousness with
which we maintain all our sentiments in our respective Denomina-
tions ; and the fruit of this Tree will be, I trust, " righteousness,
and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost." With these sentiments,
I propose the Resolution which has now been read.
Rev. Dr. Redford. â Brethren, I have been swift to hear, and
slow to speak ; and, if you will be swift to hear, I shall be swift in
my speech too : for, at this hour, it will ill become me to detain
you more than a minute or two ; and that shall only be, to con-
gratulate you, that you have come up from the swellings of Jordan,
and you have crossed the Atlantic, â aye, and even America itself, â
and now you have come to the Pacific. I do not think there will
be a division of opinion on the Motion before the Chair. We can-
not do more, at present certainly, than this Resolution proposes.
Whatever may be in the future, we leave to Providence. As far
as this Resolution goes, Christians are all, I trust, prepared to go.
We can unite as individual Christians ; and we have united with
unspeakable delight so far ; and I trust that delight will be con-
tinued and increased.
Rev. W. M. Bunting. â While I intend to concur in the Mo-
tion, it is only on the ground of my conviction of the utter im-
practicability of anything higher, that I can for one moment bring
my mind to consent to such a Resolution as this. I shall vote for
the Resolution, under a deep, and humbling, and painful feeling,
that, as yet, this great Confederation is but in its infancy, and only
commencing that course, which I hope it is destined in Providence
to run. I still hold in the opinion, that our Church divisions will
only abate, when all the Branches of the Church of Christ shall agree
to recognize in each other the essential principles and forms of true
Christianity. I am not quite sure, â having concurred in this Re-
solution, â that I shall not move, when we come to acknowledge
our sins before God, that we agree to confess them all, past, present,
The Resolution was then put, and carried unanimously.
Rev. Dr. Steane read the next clause.
Rev. Dr. Byrth. â I beg to move the Adjournment. The hour
has already passed, and the Devotional Exercises should not be
The Motion for the Adjournment was then put, and carried.
Rev. Dr. Jenkyn engaged in Prayer.
The Conference then adjourned to five o'clock in the evening.
FIFTH DAY EVENING SESSION. 181
Rev. W. Bevan moved, and Rev. J. Tod Brown seconded, â
" That the Rev. Dr. Raffles preside over the Devotional Exercises."
The Chairman then gave out 27th Hymn, of Hymns on Christian
Union, which was sung by the Meeting. After which, he read
Philippians ii., and Rev. Dr. Smyth engaged in prayer. The
Brethren then united in singing 25th Hymn from the same book.
The Chairman read Revelation xxii., and Rev. J. L. Chute engaged
The Chairman. â Beloved Brethren, â I feel that everything
that can be regarded as appropriate to our Devotional Exercises,
from day to day, has already been said ; and it will be wholly un-
suitable for me to attempt to occupy any portion of that valuable
time, which is becoming more and more precious, by offering any
remarks of my own. I will only call upon you, as I call upon my-
self, devoutly to thank God, and take courage. I rejoice that I
have been permitted to live, to witness what was realized within
these walls on the evening of Thursday last; â such a scene as, I
firmly believe, never was witnessed on earth before ; and which,
perhaps, never can be, under exactly the same circumstances,
realized on earth again. I do believe, that from this hallowed
Meeting there will go forth an influence â a holy influence â upon
the Church and the World, â wide as the World and lasting as
Eternity. To cherish, therefore, under these circumstances, any-
thing like a doubt as to the ultimate issue, after the tokens with
which we have been favoured, â the gracious tokens of the Divine
approbation and presence, â would be criminal unbelief. Let not,
then, that sin lie at the door of any of us ; but let us go forth in the
great enterprize, to which we are all committed before the Church
and the World, strong in the Lord, aud in the power of His might !
Sir Culling Eardley Smith then took the Chair.
Rev. W. Bevan read the Minutes of the Morning Session ; in
which he had inserted a brief statement of the remarks which Sir
C. E. Smith had made, on taking the Chair, in reference to the Day.
Rev. G. Osborn doubted the propriety of inserting in the
Minutes the sentiments that fell from the Chairman.
On this subject some conversation arose, in which Rev. W.
M'llwaine, Rev. Dr. S. H. Cox, Rev. E. Bickersteth, Rev. Dr.
182 EVANGELICAL ALLIANCE.
Bunting, Rev. Dr. Massie, Rev. W. W. Ewbank, and Rev. T.
Scales, took part, and the Chairman and the Secretary offered some
explanations and suggestions.
The temper and spirit, in which subjects of such an interesting
and exciting nature were referred to by persons of various shades
of opinion, was among the most pleasing circumstances that oc-
curred, â and served to illustrate, in a very delightful manner, the
character of the Meeting. Finally, as a Report of the Conference,
in extenso, was contemplated, in which the sentiments uttered by
different speakers would find place,, it was decided, on the motion
of T. Farmer, Esq., that the Minutes, with the omission of that
paragraph, should be confirmed. Rev. C. M. Birrel also suggested
a more exact reference to the precise point which had been urged
by Dr. Symington, when presiding over the Devotional Exercises ;
which was readily adopted.
Rev. T. Mortimer moved, â
" That the Conference, at its rising, adjourn till Tuesday, 25th instant, at Five
o'clock, p. m."
W. Hamilton, Esq. seconded the Motion, which was carried.
Rev. Geo. Osborn moved, â
" That the Rev. Mr. M'llwaine be added to the list of Chairmen to preside over
the Devotional Exercises."
Rev. C. Prest. â I second that Motion. Carried.
Rev. Dr. Steane. â I suppose, the Conference will resume the
consideration of the additional Statement to the Summary of
Articles ? The Report of the Select Committee will now
Rev. Dr. Bunting. â The Committee came to a unanimous and
speedy conclusion. We found, when we came together, that there was
little difficulty, but what might be happily adjusted. Dr. Wardlaw,
our Chairman, is obliged to be absent, and has requested me to pre-
sent the Report. Perhaps I ought to say, that our happy agreement
has proceeded upon the principle, first, of amalgamating the first
and last clauses ; and, secondly, of omitting altogether the third
clause, as being, we think, rendered unnecessary by the first and
last ; and retaining the second as it stands, and in the order in which
it stands. To save time and trouble, we propose to omit the whole
paragraph as it now stands, and to substitute for it the following: â
"It is, however, distinctly declared: â First, that this brief Summary is not to be
regarded, in any formal or Ecclesiastical sense, as a Creed or Confession, nor
the adoption of it as involving an assumption of the right authoritatively to
FIFTH DAY EVENING SESSION. 183
define the limits of Christian Brotherhood ; but simply as an indication of the
class of persons, whom it is desirable to embrace within the Alliance: â Second,
that the selection of certain tenets, with the omission of others, is not to be
held as implying, that the former constitute the whole body of important
Truth, or that the latter are unimportant."
I move, that the Supplementary Clause stand in these terms.
Rev. E. Bickersteth. â I second that Motion. Carried.
The Chairman. â It now remains to adopt the Basis as a whole.
Rev. Dr. Steane. â Dr. Beaumont's Amendment should now
come on ; and also that of Mr. Macfie. I do not know whether
the Report of the Committee will satisfy Mr. Macfie ; but he has
an Amendment. Dr. Beaumont's Amendment is, â
" That the order of the last two Articles be inverted."
Rev. Dr. Beaumont. â I have no intention to occupy you with
the proposal, unless it commends itself to your approbation. I am
not about to argue. The Ninth Article consists of solemn truths
to be believed ; and I think it should have precedence of an
Article like the Eighth. It seems to me, that the contents of the
Ninth Article will come in, more appropriately, in fellowship with
the other great Truths that precede.
Rev. Dr. F. A. Cox. â I was going to suggest the completion of
the Doctrinal Basis ; and then, after the Doctrinal Basis, there
seems a propriety in announcing the Christian Ministry, and the
perpetuity of the Ordinances with which it stands connected.
Rev. J. Tod Brown suggested that the Ninth ought to come
between the Sixth and Seventh.
Rev. Dr. Beaumont. â It will make the collocation and the
sequence more powerful. I propose, therefore, â
"That it be the Seventh, and that the Article standing before the Eighth be now
Rev. TV. Bevan. â All that is meant is this, â that the Article
now standing as number nine be inserted between six and seven.
Dr. Beaumont agreed.
Rev. J. Tod Brown. â I second that.
Rev. Dr. Jenkyn. â In every system of Theology, the points
contained in the Ninth Article are called the four last things : and
they are now in their proper place.
The Amendment was then put, and carried.
Rev. Dr. Steane. â The next Amendment given, in point of
time, is Mr. Macfie's, which relates to the Supplementary Clause;
184 EVANGELICAL ALLIANCE.
and since then, Mr. Ewbank has sent in an Amendment as to the
order. It is, â
"That the Seventh be the Last."
Rev. W. W. Ewbank. â I shall occupy your time very shortly.
It strikes me, that the Seventh Article, relating to the Right and
Duty of Private Judgement in the Interpretation of the Holy
Scriptures, seems to be a complete interruption in the general
tenor of the Articles. I will explain why I think so. â We begin,
properly, by describing the Source of all our instructions, â the
Divine Inspiration, Authority and Sufficiency of the Holy Scrip,
tures. Then, not for the purpose of an exact Creed, but simply
to indicate the class of persons whom we desire to include, we
proceed to draw from this source, the Scriptures, the following
important Articles : â The Unity of the Godhead, and the Trinity
of Persons therein, â The utter Depravity of human nature in
consequence of the Fall, â The Incarnation of the Son of God, and
His work of Atonement for sinners of mankind, â The Justification
of the sinner by Faith alone, â The work of the Holy Spirit in the
Conversion and Sanctifi cation of the sinner. I think that, after
we have spoken of the work of the Holy Spirit, the next Article