Brethren Archive

Alexander Hume Rule

Born: 6th May 1843
Died: 2nd July 1906

Intro, Biographical Information, Notes etc:

Born on May 6, 1843 in Scotland and died on July 2, 1906 in Des Moines, Iowa, USA.

Lots more info if you have an Ancestry subscription:

A short biography in German in the magazine Zeit & Schrift; online available on



Tom said ...
"We can easily see a tremendous power of Satan leading among many lines, such as Higher Criticism, Christian Scientists, Mormonism, Adventism, etc., etc., toward the apostasy seen in the 'vine of the earth', in Rev. 14. … One of these lines is Ravenism." A.H. Rule
Saturday, Mar 23, 2013 : 13:49
Nick said ...
Yes, but he also wrote, "You refer to the work in the West Indies. I am thankful to be able to say that it still goes on with much encouragement. I probably mentioned to you that when we reached Barbados there was no meeting. Two sisters still held to divine principles. But God wrought in grace and filled our hearts with thankfulness and cheer. A number were delivered from Ravenism and several have been delivered from the Kelly position. And there were a good many conversions both of adults and children, and now there are 24 or 25 at the Lord’s table [!!]" (11 Jan 1905) 'Selected Ministry of A. H. Rule', vol.2, p.70
Thursday, Oct 31, 2019 : 19:34
Gabriele said ...

Obituary for A.H. Rule in The Des Moines Register, 3 July 1906:

Sunday, Mar 3, 2024 : 20:33
Mark Best said ...

To refer to Nick’s earlier comment above. I have not noticed it before but it predates by only a couple of days an address I gave which touched on that very subject. The double exclamation marks in the square brackets are not in Mr Rule’s book but it draws attention to a concept still in circulation. 

I doubt that Mr Rule thought that there were only 24 or 25 at the Lord’s table in the whole world, but nevertheless, it implies that he thought only such a number were at the Lord’s table in the locality to which he was referring, all other believers in Christ there, not. 

It comes down to the question as to whether or not Christians in “the systems” and companies of “brethren” other than his own, including those not delivered from so-called "Ravenism" or from "the Kelly position"(!), were at the Lord’s table. That notion exists even now, including that only those who have the Lord’s table have the Lord’s supper, or to put it another way, partake of it. 

I quote two respected brothers of a day gone by. 

Mr Darby: "As to the Lord’s Supper. They [saints in systems] may partake of it in personal communion and piety, and I doubt not do, and enjoy His grace, but they have lost the proper corporate enjoyment of it in the unity of the body …" (Letters of J. N. D., page 357, Stow Hill edition.) 

Notice that Mr Darby says, “I doubt not do.” 

William Kelly wrote: "As for the notion that you may have the Lord’s Supper without the Lord’s Table, it is beneath sober Christians." (William Kelly, The Bible Treasury, Volume 15, page 35.)

It might be that the idea that some “have” the Lord’s table is refused, but that it is to be found only among certain Christians who fulfil all the right conditions – at least in their estimation – is hardly better.

Mark Best

Monday, Mar 4, 2024 : 16:52
Mark Best said ...

As to that Mr Rule disparagingly calls “Ravenism.” To link Mr Raven with such as “Higher Criticism, Christian Scientists, Mormonism, Adventism” might have gone down well with the party faithful, but it is extreme, inappropriate, and totally unacceptable.

Monday, Mar 4, 2024 : 18:03
Nick Fleet said ...

Interesting newspaper obit, Gabriele. I'm assuming that he did not actually style himself 'Rev.' nor assumed the title Pastor but that was an assumption made by the newspaper reported?

There was a similar occurence when my great-aunt went to be with the Lord in the late 1970s. My grandfather took a lead in the burial meeting which took place in his home (the former Horsell Common 'Strict & Particular Baptist' Chapel *) and subsequent committal at Brookwood Cemetery. An account of it appeared in the local newpaper which stated that the funeral was conducted by "Pastor S. A. Fleet of Horsell Common Chapel", much to his amusement!

* David Denham was its first Pastor. He wrote the hymn " 'Mid scenes of confusion and creature complaints", see Spiritual Songs #383 (#225 in Little Flock 1856 and 1881 editions)

Wednesday, Mar 6, 2024 : 04:13
Gabriele said ...
Yes, you are right, Nick, that's the newspaper's assumption. And thank you for the amusing anecdote from your family. :-)
Thursday, Mar 7, 2024 : 20:50

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