Ill.) Western Baptist Educational Convention. (1871 : Ch.

Proceedings of the Western Baptist Educational Convention, held in the First Baptist Church, Chicago, May 24 and 25, 1871 online

. (page 11 of 13)
Online LibraryIll.) Western Baptist Educational Convention. (1871 : ChProceedings of the Western Baptist Educational Convention, held in the First Baptist Church, Chicago, May 24 and 25, 1871 → online text (page 11 of 13)
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motion, and the question recurred upon the adoption of the report
of the Committee on Academies.

The report was adopted.

The report of the Committee on Colleges and Universities was
then read by the Chairman, Rev. A. N. ARNOLD, D.D., of Illinois.


Your Committee on Colleges and Universities, to whom the paper pre-
sented last evening by Dr. J. A. Smith was referred, ask leave to present the
following report:

They find that in the portion of our country which falls properly within the
view of this Convention, the Baptist denomination has eleven higher institu-
tions of learning, bearing the name of College or University. Of this number
Iowa has three, Illinois tivo, and Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Missouri, Kansas,
and Wisconsin, one each. Six of these have fairly reached the rank of col-
leges, namely, two in Illinois, and one in each of the States of Michigan,
Ohio, Indiana, and Missouri.


The common need of all is a, large addition to their endowments; and
the chief obstacle to the adequate increase of their endowments is not so
much the poverty of our people in the regions on which they chiefly depend
for their support, nor the excess of their number above the real wants of the
communities in which they are located, as the want, on the part of our Bap-
tist people, of a due sense of the value and need of a higher education. The
importance of building up these institutions, to the extent of one in each
State, to the stature of well-endowed colleges, with a broad curriculum of
study, ample libraries, and all needful appliances for scientific illustration
and investigation, can hardly be exaggerated. If, in the newer and more
sparsely peopled States, colleges can not be brought up to this high standard
at once, it should be the persistent and hopeful aim of those to whom their
management is entrusted, to advance them as steadily and as speedily as
possible towards this goal. We say hapeful, as well as persistent aim; for
the hi.«tory of the educational institutions of our country has afforded many
signal examples to show that the feeblest beginnings of Christian faith may
grow into strong and majestic consummations. The duty of the hour, in the
judgment of your Committee, is to give earnest attention to the enlargement
and improvement of our Colleges^ leaving the great Universities of the future
to be shaped as the wants and the wisdom of the future may dictate.

Your Committee, in closing their report, would sum u.p their convictions
in the following resolutions :

Resolved, That we express our devout gratitude to Almighty God, that
our denominational colleges have been to so great an extent pervaded b}-
Christian influences, and so often visited by the converting grace of His
spirit; and that we regard the continuance of this blessing as indispensable
to our highest denominational prosperity, and to the adequate supply of our
churches with an educated and godly ministry.

Resolved, That we recognize our duty, as Christian educators and as
Baptists to do what we can to bring our wealthy laymen to a just apprecia-
tion of the duty and privilege of devoting a generous portion of their wealth
to the better endowment of our denominational colleges.
Respectfully submitted,

A. N. Arnold, Chairman.

Dr. GREGORY spoke decidedly in favor of the adoption of the
report. He had been pained with the depressed condition of the
Baptist educational interest in the West. He had been thinking
whether a crusade could not be aroused in favor of these institutions.
He wanted to throw it out that instead of going into the field —
instead of coming down to us for one institution — come down with
all the power that can be derived from a general consideration of
Baptist Educational interests. He believed a movement could be
inaugurated here to-day which would give to the aid of Baptist
institutions from one million to a million and a half of dollars. He
would have an appeal in Christ's name, an appeal to the Christians
of the Northwest, go out among the people in aid of this work, that
such men as Dr. Burroughs and Dr. Wayland might be relieved
from a work which is crushing them. Let us all bear it — or, at
least, our portion of it.


Dr. STONE deprecated the practice of decrying the number of
colleges now in existence. Though there might be some weak ones,
yet we have none too many. The only foult is, we do not sustain
them as we ought, or as we might. He proceeded at some length
to show that our colleges are mostly local institutions.

Rev. LUTHER STONE, of Chicago, followed the same line of
thought, and gave carefully prepared statistics, which abundantly
proved his positions. And, in this respect, our denominational insti-
tutions are not singular.

Rev. A. OWEN, of Michigan, did not coincide with the idea that
we should have a college in every State. He hoped that this Con-
vention wouid take no steps to set our brethren in the new States
about any such business. They had had an experience in Michigan
which they would not like to repeat. In regard to those ah-eady
established, he would be the last one to tear them down.

Prof. MITCHELL, of Chicago, said that the clause in the report
which Bro. Owen opposes, was one wliich he approved, but with a
diflerent interpretation. He thought the recommendation to mean
that they should have one college for every State, as a maximum,
and not have two or three. He did not understand either that it was
proposed to go about the establishment of these colleges at once.
Prof. Mitchell described the policy which had been pursued by the
Congregationalists, and hoped we might improve them.

Rev. J. T. WESTOVER was emphatically in fixvor of the senti-
ments of the report presented by Dr. Arnold. He gave at some
length the reasons for having one college in each State. He thought
the theory of the paper read last night very beautiful, but impracti-
cable and inapplicable in practice. He therefore decidedly approved
of the plan of one college to a State, so far as the West was con-

The report was adopted. "Tx

The Convention then listened to a paper by Rev. J. V. SCHO-
FIELD, of Iowa, upon


In Germany, the pastor is designated as " He who has the care of souls."
This designation implies a care in education.

The pastor brings souls to Christ by teaching them the gospel, and leads
them to fullness in Christ by continued and more complete instruction.

The derivation of his official title imposes upon him the duty to guide, to


nourish. He does this by religious teaching, and by guiding the disciples,
the flock, into spiritual pastures (Eph. iv, 11). So understood the Apostle
when he wrote, " To some he gave pastors and teachers." The best expos-
itors are agreed that both words refer to the one office of pastor. The com-
mission makes the pastor pre-eminently a teacher. He is first to teach, then
baptize. He is more a Samuel than an Aaron. Thus religious education
becomes a necessary pai t of pastoral duty.

Vinet says, " Christianity is a thought of God, which is destined to
become a thought of man." If so, pastor and people must understand the
word, and teach it. Piety being equal, educated minds can best instruct others
in religion. The colleges of our country are the best schools to give a com-
plete education. Their course of stud}' is founded upon the progressive expe-
rience of centuries in teaching. Institutions of learning, then, of all grades,
and especially colleges and theological seminaries, are necessarily included
in a pastor's care.

He need not shrink from this work because of skeptical tendencies in
schools of learning. Ignorance produces more infidelity than learning.
The majority of our colleges were founded by Christian people, and nearly
all their teachers gladly learn of Christ.

Teachers and pastors like Wicklifte, Tyndale, Calvin, Robert Hall, Wes-
ley, Edwards and Dwight, have exhibited a beautiful blending of growth in
learning with growth in piety.

Prof. Tyler says, " More are converted in colleges, in proportion to the
number of unconverted when they enter, than in any community or State.
Eightj'-eight ministers, who are pre-eminent in the Church as pastors, pro-
fessors and presidents of colleges, from .lohn Robinson, the leader of the
Pilgrim Fathers in 1592, down to Edwards, Dwight and Alexander, were
converted in colleges."

Pastors may look upon learning, in connection with faith, in hope or in
fear, but they can not safely be negligent of it. Schools of learning are
bound to exist, and if Christian men do not establish and control them, and
keep them consecrated to Christian purposes, irreligious men will found
them and control them in the interest of infidelity. The educational power
of a country is the dominant power, and Christians should wield it for
good government, industry, morals and Christianity. If this is to be done,
pastors must share in the work, yea, lead in the work.

Pastors, in their direct wot k in saving souls and leading them to a higher
life in Christ, find peculiar aid in promoting i/ie evangelical spirit. That
spirit is a great need in schools of learning. When it is wanting, they
become scholastic and corrupt. It depends greatly upon pastors to preserve
that spirit. When in the dark ages they lost it, and became corrupt, the
colleges and monasteries shared the same fate. Pure gospel in teachers and
pastors will preserve pure learning. When Wicklifte, Luther, Calvin, and
all the reformers, brought back a pure gospel, they revived and purified the
systems of education.

Luther and Calvin saw that the Reformation could not be advanced with-
out good schools. Luther established a system of public schools which
lasted for a hundred years in Germany, and Bancroft says, " We boast of our
common schools, but Calvin was the father of popular education, and the
inventor of the system of free schools." Thanks to him, then, the Puritan
pastors caught the spirit that secured a teacher for every fifty families, and a
grammar school for every hundred. It was no doubt from his example in
founding a college with eight professors, for the education of young men to


preach the Gospel, that the New England pastors, only eight years after
their landing, founded Harvard College. Those early pastors, Cotton,
Hooker and Elliot were scholars of Oxford and Cambridge. The ten pastors
who founded Yale College in 1700, partook of their spirit, and these men
gave permanency and character to religion and learning in the Colonies.

It is impossible to estimate fully what power and influence pastors gave
to education in the New England Colonies, and by it to Christianity.

But they furnish marked examples for pastors now, and in the future.

Hoiv can the j>astor best perform his duty in educatioii?

The apostolic injunction, " Let them learn first to show piety at home,"
serves as a rule for education in the family. Here the pastor's work should
begin. I am now speaking of Bishops who are husbands and fathers. The
exceptions are not worthy of notice.

The pastor should care for the education of his children, and superintend
it with the vigilance of a good teacher; and so set an example in his own
family which will inspire other families to seek education for their chil-
dren. Thus he will become the means of elevating the standard of edu-
cation in the Church and in the community. Thei'e are memorable examples
of pastoral fidelity in home teaching. The father of Jonathan Edwards
was a Hebrew and Greek scholar, and he took great pains to train his son
to habits of study and analysis. The father of Dr. Ryland, an eminent Bap-
tist clergyman of England, put into his son's hand a Hebrew grammar
before he was five years old; and when yet but a child, he read to the pious
James Hervey the twenty-third Psalm in Hebrew. In his visits, the pastor
must not regard suggestions as to the best mode of directing the child's
early education, as out of his sphere. Such guidance will aid in religious
culture, will encourage parents in their toil and care for their children, and
will stimulate the children in study.

In new portions of our country, the pastor can render great aid in estab-
lishing common schools, select schools and academies. He can exert an
influence in securing good teachers, and if possible, Christian teachers.

Where schools are established, the pastor should visit them, speak in
them, give honor to the teacher's calling, inspire the children with a love for
study, and show them that perfect character is attained by a union of learn-
ing and religion. He should be willing to serve on boards of education and
examining committees, to aid parents in choosing schools for their children,
to direct them to those of their own denomination, and to prevent them, if
possible, from sending their children to Catholic schools. Pastors should
visit the colleges of their denomination, when they are near, in term time
and at examinations. Such visits will remind the students that there is a
vital relation between the colleges and the churches, between learning and
religion, and will also cheer the professors in their work. A head officer in
one of our leading Eastern colleges complains of a lack on the part of pas-
tors in this duty. None come to see whether their work is well or ill done.
He feels deserted by his brethren, and wishes our pastors would take lessons
from other denominations. Pastors should also seek out and encourage
young men to study for the ministry.

It is the duty of the pastor to remember our colleges and seminaries, and
all schools of learning, in prayer, in his family, and in the pulpit. Such a
remembrance renders institutions of learning in a manner sacred. In his
sermons learning should be frequently commended as needful for all, and not
simply for ministers, as though all the demand for educational force in the
Church were confined to the pulpit. The churches need educated laymen and


women. Such persons aid the pastor and the Sabbath-school ; and learning
thus consecrated to Christ gives character and enlarged influence to the

Pastors are liable to fail in this. Says Presideint Anderson : " I have heard
sermons on the need of an educated ministry, but never heard a pastor in
his own pulpit plead for an educated membership. Yet our churches are
sufiering for want of this. Our people have little idea of the need of an
educated membership, beyond the standard of the common school." The
pastor should have a care for teachers' meetings; prepare them for, and be
present at them. By this means he will educate the whole Sabbath-school in
the Scriptures.

He should recommend a religious paper. Luther Rice connected with for-
eign missions Columbian College and the "Columbian Star" as necessary
means of their success. Does not this meeting, and do not these reporters
of the press, confirm his views.?

The pastor's care should be to organize and sustain educational societies,
the precursors of our colleges, and seek for them a partial support in endow-
ment. The American Education Society has a fund of seventy-three thousand
dollars. The endowment of colleges and theological seminaries should be a
part of his care. He would do well to remind his rich members of John
Harvard, who bequeathed half his property and all his library to Harvard
College; of Nicholas Brown, whose name will be perpetuated in Brown Uni-
versity; of Vassar, Shurtleff, Wm. Jewell and Samuel Payne; of Hamilton
and John P. Crozer.

It is a part of the pastor's duty to explain to his people the dependence of
our government upon the educated nien of our colleges in framing constitu-
tions and laws, in advancing the mechanical arts, in improving our common
schools and academies. For these last the colleges furnish for the most part
the teachers and the text books. But chiefly should he show the dependence
of Christianity upon them for educated, pious laymen and ministers.

It is for the pastors to disabuse the minds of their people of the idea that
colleges are merely secular institutions for the promotion of an educated
aristocracy. In truth they are Christian schools, and were founded for
Christianity. " Pro Christo et Ecclesia" the motto .of Harvard, is in spirit
that of all our colleges. The ten pastors who founded Yale are an example
of the origin of our American institutions of learning.

The colleges of New England were born of the churches; and many of
their pastors were born, both intellectually and spiritually, of the collegi:s.
" Churches and colleges," says Professor Tyler, " sustain the relation to each
other of alternate fountain and stream." If they are to continue in this effi-
cient, refreshing relation pastors must bear an indispensable part in securing
this beneficent result. Dr. Dwight once remarked to a pastor, that "the
man who would show to common minds the connection between colleges and
the interests of the Church would be a benefactor to his species." One com-
petent to judge says : "We behold in Dr. Dwight the very demonstration
which he asked. He corroborated revelation by the light of nature and reason,
and at the same time brought it to the apprehension of the common mind.
He transformed Yale from a nursery of infidelity into a Christian school."

It is for the pastor to maintain such a relation between colleges and
churches that both shall unite in echoing the sentiment of Dr. Witherspoon,
the scholar of Edinburgh, the President of Jersey College, the leading mem-
ber of our first Congress — " Cursed be all that learning that is cotttraty to
the cross of Christ; cursed be all that learning that is not coincident yi'ith


the cross of Christ; cursed be all that learning that is not subservient to the
cross of Christ."

It is the duty of the pastor to educate the church to observe the last
Thursday in February as a day of fasting and prayer for colleges. Unless
the pastor sees to this it will not be done. He has historical encouragement
tp do this. The converting Spirit has been granted from its first observance.
In thirty-six different colleges fifteen hundred were converted in fifteen
years. Revivals have averaged once in four years since the observance of
that day.

As to the bearing of pastoral care in education, upon a general, effective,
denominational moTiement'\n education, one church educated by its pastor to
a correct view of the relation of colleges and churches, of learning and
religion, would be a great power for good. The same result effected by ten
thousand pastors in seventeen thousand Baptist churches, with a million and
four hundred thousand members, would be a far mightier power; a rapid
and general advancement would thus be made in our denominational charac-
ter and influence.

Editors, professors, and presidents of colleges must do much in this
movement; but it can not become general and efl[icient without the active
co-operation of pastors in the work. The people are not self-moved to great
refonns and upward progress. It is the work of educated men to enlist and
lead them in such enterprise. By Tyndale's talent and learning the Chris-
tian people of his time were brought to read and love the Bible. Luther and
Calvin taught their followers to cling to justification by faith. Rog(;r Wil-
liams inspired his adlierents with the love of soul-liberty, and with the reso-
lution to retain and diffuse it.

Pastors, by their near connection and sympathy with the churches, and
by their ability to see the true relation between churches and schools of
learning, are peculiarly fitted to create a general and deep interest in educa-
tion. In all the history of the Church, education has declined or prospered
according to the corruption and ignorance, or to the purity and intelligence
of the pastors. A pure, evangelical spirit in the teachers of schools and
the pastors of the churches secures alike the interests of piety and learning.
The revival of this gospel purity in pastors and teachers has ever been fol-
lowed by the revival of pure learning in colleges, and by the establishment
of public schools among the people.

Franke, of Germany, the pious pastor 'of Erfurt, the Dwight of Halle,
the founder of the pietistic school, which numbered at one time five thousand
students and one hundred teachers, is a representative of man}' pastors
within the last five hundred years.

Professor Schmidt, in his " History of Education," says : "The lack of
an evangelical spirit in the pastors, and their want of interest in the schools,
retarded education in the last part of the eighteenth century." It was then
that the godless sentiment of Rousseau obtained currency — "Let not the
rising generation hear a word about God.'i It was then that some educators
said — "Bring forth everything out of the idea, out of thyself, the world,
the commonwealth, even the Deity."

It is the work of pastors to counteract this theory of education, and to
maintain and exemplify the dependence of pure, practical education upon a
pure gospel. It is their pre-eminent work in the sphere of education, to form
such a union of life and sympathy between the churches and the schools as
will infuse a Christian spirit into the latter and a Christian intelligence in
the former. When all pastors and churches hold such a relation to schools,


there will be a progressive and general movement in education, toward the
perfect goal of thorough. learning, for the profit alike of science, of civiliza-
tion, and of Christianity.

As to the bearing of pastoral care in education upon our denominational
character, it is obvious to remark that the conditions of individual character
apply to communities and nations, to churches and denominations of Chris-
tians. In the individual Christian, good talent, learning and piety constitute
superior character. The greatest of the three is piety — the ground-work of all.
Moses, Daniel and Paul, are marked charactersofthe/^reequalities combined.
A denomination of Christians with average natural ability, united with learn-
ing and piety, will take character alongside the individual of like qualities.
As individual piety is circumscribed in influence when associated with igno-
rance, so is it in churches and Christian bodies.

Christ is a prophet no less than a priest. Denominations obtain charac-
ter through the talent and learning of their leaders. We can trace one to
Calvin, another to Luther, one to Cranmer, another to John Cottorr, and
another to John Wesley. The names of Gill, Robert Hall, Carson, Fuller,
Staughton, Broadus, Wayland, with living scholars whose names are quoted
by pedo-Baptist writers as authorities in Bible translation and exegesis, give
honor to the Baptist denomination in the sphere of learning. But where did
those men of history, who have given name and honor to their denomina-
tions, with the exception of the Baptists of Waldensian antiquity, get their
characteristic stamp.? As Clement and Origen received theirs in the first
Christian school of Alexandria, in the second century, so Jerome, Wicklifte,
Erasmus, and Tyndale, obtained theirs at the universities of England and
Germany, Luther at Erfurt, Calvin at Paris, Cotton, Cranmer and Wesley
at Cambridge; Gill — being a heretic — was not admitted to the schools of
the Established Church, but obtained his title from them by self-culture. Hall
studied at Bristol and Aberdeen, by favor of Lord Coke; Roger Williams
at Cambridge, Staughton at Bristol. History tells us that denominations
receive their origin from the learning and p'iety of their leaders, and these
leaders derive their power of intellect and learning from the colleges. Self-
educated men, says a learned teacher, are half-educated ; it is the college that
gives fullness of character. In proportion as such men become numerous
among the ministry of a denomination, will the entire denomination have
character for intelligence and learning.

As to the bearing of pastoral care in education upon denominational
progress, if there is any truth in the proverb, " Knowledge is power," it fol-
lows that education is a power for denominational progress. W^ithout it,
Congregationalists and Presbyterians would not stand among the first in
influence. May we not trace their prosperity to the fact that they have

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Online LibraryIll.) Western Baptist Educational Convention. (1871 : ChProceedings of the Western Baptist Educational Convention, held in the First Baptist Church, Chicago, May 24 and 25, 1871 → online text (page 11 of 13)