Members of the Convention:--
There is one thing that I believe a man can always do with safety, and without disappointment, and that is to appeal to the sense of fair play of a Baptist body. Now there are individual Baptists to whom you can not make that appeal, but there are now present a great body of Baptist people, and down in the bottom of their hearts there is honesty and there is common sense, and there is a spirit of fairness; and I come to you this afternoon simply and solely with a plea for Christ and his truth, for the work of his Kingdom, and for fair play with all the brethren.
I hope to make good the basis of that plea for fair play in a few moments, and I believe that this great body of splendid Baptists will respond to that appeal, and that is all I ask…
Now, brethren, I might say this, although I don’t suppose it is necessary to dwell on it, if we were to undertake to put our personal preferences in the doctrinal statement and insist upon our personal group preferences being put in the confession of faith, for Baptists covering eighteen states like this, where would we ‘fetch up at’ I can just think of things I know some men would put in. Some people would want to insist on a twenty-four hour day in Genesis, and some a period day. Some people would insist on post-millennialism, and some people on premillenialism. Some people would insist on church succession and some on anti-church succession. Some would insist on a universal church and some would oppose the universal church. Why, there is no end to where we would go… Brethren, I appeal to you for fair play. I don’t believe it is fair play for a group of brethren who are particularly committed to this standpoint, to come here and inist that everybody in the conference confrom to that standpoint.
We are all conscientious in our point of view. Brother Stealey says he is conscientious, so am I. God forbid that I shouldn’t be. We have all got conscience, and the Baptist conscience is a thing which a Baptist in England said has worn out more hammers than all other agencies in Great Britain. I believe that one things about the Baptist conscience is fair play. One thing about the Baptist conscience is straight-forwardness. One thing about the Baptist conscience is its willingness to recognize the opinions of other people and rights of other people, within gospel limits.
I can tell you, some of the finest and most orthodox men—I would name them, men like James P. Boyce, F.H. Kerfoot, James Orr, men like James Denney, and H.R. McIntosh, the Scotchman, Abraham Kuyper of Holland—all these men take a position of this kind,--men who are the greatest hope of orthodoxy on the other side of the ocean, in books they have written, orthodox to the core, and very valuable. They take the same position this statement takes.
I appeal to you this afternoon in the name of our God and Saviour, in the name of God’s work, the many missionaries, and great educational work of God’s Kingdom that Southern Baptists are doing in such a magnificent way, in the name of all these things I plead with you, let us get together; let us unanimously adopt this statement as it is here.
Well, if you don’t I just leave it on your hearts and ask you prayerfully to consider it, and ask the Master to show you how to do the thing that shall be just to every interest, that it shall be just to the cause and just to Jesus.
Source: Biblical Recorder
Date: June 24, 1925
Title: ADDRESS OF PRESIDENT E.Y. MULLINS, AT THE SOUTHERN BAPTIST CONVENTION, IN SUPPORT OF THE MAJORITY REPORT ON BAPTIST FAITH AND MESSAGE Credit to Benji Ramsaur for sending me the address.