The North Bend Association of Baptists, convened at Salem
Meeting house, Boone county, Ky. on the 3rd Friday, Saturday
and Sunday, in August, 1829-- sendeth greetings.
Brethren, Beloved in Christ Jesus: --
Through a kind and indulgent Providence, we have been permitted to meet again, and attend to the business that comes before us; and with peculiar pleasure, we express the satisfaction we have had in uniting with many of our kindred in Christ, in the work and worship of the Lord. Our interview has been comfortable, and the letters from the churches, that compose our body, seem to express a great pleasure in the anticipation of the meeting, which is the 27th of the Association; and we believe, from the constitution of this Association until now, there never has been any discord, or unpleasant feelings excited in the Association. Here we will adopt the language of David, and say: "Behold how good and how pleasant it is, for brethren to dwell together in unity." And Paul says, in a very affectionate exhortation, "let brotherly love continue." This exhortation should have a considerable bearing on the mind of all the children of God, as love seemed to be the moving principle of the great plan of redemption, that was laid in Infinite wisdom; that God so loved the world, that he gave his beloved son, who came into our world upon the great errand of salvation, and did suffer as a man of sorrow, and acquainted with grief. He also gave himself a sacrifice to divine justice, as a mediator between God and man. Was there ever love like this? The Saviour saith, "greater love hath no man that this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." This brings to view some thing of the strength of that love which Jesus bore to his people, which was stronger than death. And it is through this medium that the Holy Spirit of God, acts upon the mind of poor dead sinners, to give them life and adopt them into the heavenly family; and in believing in Christ they rejoice with joy, that is unspeakable and full of glory. These are the brethren, that Paul addresses, and now in possession of that love that he speaks of. Is the exhortation good? or have we considered maturely our duty, in point of obedience to God and one another. When we consider what God has done for us, in the great work of redemption, in order to raise sinners from their state of sin and death, and eternal ruin, and to be adopted into a heavenly family, to wear a crown of righteousness, and possess a kingdom of immortal glory -- is it not enough, to awaken all the feeling sensations of the mind, to a proper sense of our duty, to attend to all the commands and ordinances of the Lord, with pleasure and delight? Then, let us receive the exhortation, and say, "let brotherly love continue," and not only say, but do all things that we are directed in the scriptures, that may tend to happify each other. In so doing, we pattern after the Great Lawgiver, who by becoming poor, made many rich, and by becoming sorrowful made many rejoice; therefore we should attend to every good word and work, to instruct each other in useful knowledge, in the kingdom of Christ. His kingdom is increasing, and will grow, until the last subject of grace is brought in; this is the kingdom, the prophet Daniel spoke of, that should not be destroyed. And the prophet Isaiah saith, "behold a king shall reign in righteousness," and David saith, "let the multitude of the Isles be glad thereof." Let us praise the Lord and thank his name, that he has not left us without some tokens of his divine love.
Since our last Association, according to the letters from the churches, that compose our body, there has been 186 received by experience and baptism. Let us pray for the salvation of sinners; let us pray for more labourers in the Gospel; let us pray with and for one another. We must now, with a few remarks more, come to a close. Finally, brethren, be of one mind, one in doctrine, one in discipline, one in judgment, all to be governed by the scripture, which is the standard of infallible truth. Therefore, beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord. Farewell.
[From Northbend Baptist Association Minutes, 1829. The grammar and spelling are unchanged. jrd]
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