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Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1842,
BY WASHINGTON CLAPP, In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of Massachusetts.
HINTS TO AN INQUIRER.
THOSE who practise immersion assume the position, that they may lawfully debar from the Lord's table all who administer baptism in other ways. This gives the question before us an importance which otherwise would not belong to it. If the exclusive principle advocated by this body of Christians is defensible on scriptural grounds, the greater part of Christ's professed disciples are intruders at his table. But if, on the other hand, Immersers are wrong, they are guilty of exercising an usurped authority in the house of God, and of withholding the children's bread.
The honest inquirer on this subject, therefore, in settling the question, whether he shall be immersed and unite with Immersers, must, at the same time, settle the question as to close communion. He cannot join them in church fellowship, without giving his sanction to their exclusive principle. This fact he should take along with him, through the whole argument, and put every suggestion in favor of immersion to the test of the inquiry—Is this sure and satisfactory ground on which to base close communion ?
As to the use of names, we must be excused from using the term “Baptists,” for those who practise immersion. The application to them of this name, is equivalent to a concession, that we do not baptize. And there is a kind of charm attached