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Long Run Association (KY)
Circular Letter, 1828
John B. Curle of Long Run Baptist Church

The Messengers composing the Long Run Association to the Churches they represent, Grace be unto you, Mercy and Peace be multiplied.

      DEAR BRETHREN.- Since our last annual address to you, we have experienced many of the checkered scenes of life, but not unmixed with some degree of peace, love, joy and praise to God for his great love and condescension to fallen men, in bringing them or many of them, who knew not the way of peace, (which is the subject of this address) to witness the heart cheering tidings and songs of Angels, who with rapture were heard to say glory to God in the highest, peace, good will towards men, and are now the subjects of their King, the increase of whose government and peace, there shall be no end. As all men naturally are Despotic & disposed to seek destruction and war, it is reasonabie to suppose that those who have received the peace of God that passeth all understanding, should live peaceably, and follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord. A neglect to pursue this heavenly course has deprived many of the evidence of the heart-endearing relation. Children of God, we should be peace-makers as so many component parts of the same body, bound by the nearest and dearest of all ties, governed by the best of all laws, crowned by the greatest of all Kings, whose wisdom guides, whose power protects, and ends our days in peace. Let us therefore apply the sword of the spirit, holden in the hand of faith, that every thing inimical to Zion's peace may be put to flight. But alas, where shall we be begin, with the world? Yes, most assuredly, if found among us. Let the enquiry pass from the watchman to the tender lamb

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of the fold, is there a cry who shall be the greatest? the child the exampie gives. It is better to put up Peter's carnal sword than like a Peter weep. The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace. Of all men on earth, the servants of God should be the most careful to adhere to the commands of Christ, that peace might flow like a river and righteousness as the waves of the sea. Being charged before God and the Lord Jesus Christ to preach the word, to exhort, reprove, rebuke, &c. with all long suffering and doctrine, to be patient in all things, enduring hardness, as good soldiers of Jesus Christ; shewing themselves as ensamples to the flock. But if the trumpet gives an uncertain sound, who shall know how to prepare himself for battle? Let the softest words of peace which from the Gospel flows put words of strife to flight, and all our wrath will cease. The tongue is more destructive to the peace of society than any other instrument of war. It seteth on fire the whole course of nature, and it is set on fire of Hell. Be careful therefore brethren one and all to guard against speaking evil of any man; but words of peace reveal. But this is not all that mars the peace of Zion's Pilgrims, for in many instances a worldly and avaricious spirit discloses itself by an unwillingness to attend on divine worship or days of church business, or to extend the hand of charity to the needy, or the poor. Pure religion and undefiled before God, is to visit the fatherless and widows in their afflictions, and keep yourselves unspotted from the world. Behold your Judge enthroned and hear the sentence given! then ask yourselves for peace. But the nature of this address is too limited to treat upon the subject at large. We shall therefore close by noticing one or two other cases in which the peace of many is destroyed, as arising more particularly from distrust or a kind of whimsical spirit too frequently seen in disobedient peevish children, who are always looking to the parent for more than he ever promished, and because they cannot obtain their desires, are ready to distract the whole family. Others appear to complain for want of strength to do their masters will, but for the most feeble of the flock an armor is prepared to shield his soul, defend his peace and bring him home to God. Finally brethren, be at peace among yourselves, and the God of peace shall dwell with you all.
           Z. CARPENTER, Clk.

[From Minutes of Long Run Association (KY), 1828, pp. 3-4; via Boice Digital Repository; Adam Winters, Archivist. Scanned and formatted by Jim Duvall.]

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