"But if so be that the specific object which the Deity had in-view, and designed to accomplish by means of, or in a way compatible with the gospel which he ordained and promulgated, was the eternal salvation of the bride, the Lamb's wife, Rev. 21; 9; we then of course may safely conclude, that that specific object must and will be accomplished, just in that way and manner as infinite wisdom may have dictated. And lo, this is what we do believe and rejoice in; and in the gospel we also believe, every necessary arrangement and provision is made and permanently settled for the effecting the salvation of that church which was the object of God's everlasting love and delight, and which he gave to his Son before time began.
That God ordained the GOSPEL, and promulgated the same, with a settled purpose to save sinners thereby; and hence in this his gospel he says, "I will give them an heart to know me, that 1 am the Lord; and they shall be my people, and I will be their God : for they shall return unto me with,their whole heart." And again says the Lord, 'Zaccheus make haste and come down, for to day I must abide at thy house.' And again it is said, 'As many as were ordained to eternal life believed.' And we are told that the Lord works in men to will and to do of his own good pleasure; and that Christ came to seek and to save that which was lost; Jer. 24, 7; Luke, 19, 5; Acts, 11, 48; Phil. 2, 13; Luke 19, 10. (14, 15)." (pg. 14)
Now let me supplement this with these citations from Osbourn's book "The Lawful Captive Delivered; Or, the Prey Taken from the Mighty," (see here) wherein Osbourn, a ringleader among the first Hardshells, gave us his creed. (page 327)
"But now, that all. men who read this work, may fully know and understand what are my views of the great leading points of the gospel of the Son of God, I will present unto them a compend of what I believe.
1. I believe in one only true God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Maker of heaven and earth, and Upholder of all things, visible and invisible; and that he dwelleth in a Trinity of Persons in the Godhead; the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, who are One in nature, and equal in all the divine perfections, each Holy Person having the whole of the divine essence, and yet is not the essence divided: and that those three Glorious Persons are equally concerned and interested in the great work of redemption, and in the complete salvation of all and every one of those persons whom the Father gave to his Son before the foundation of the world. “Thine they were and thou gavest them to me,” John, 17. 5.
Osbourn was a leading opponent of those first Hardshells, like Wilson Thompson and Samuel Trott, who were Sabellian as regards the Trinity. Here Osbourn gives the truth of Scripture and of the Old Baptist confessions.
2. I believe in the prescience, or foreknowledge of God; and that all things which to us are past, present, and to come, are to this living and true God, one eternal now; and that all wisdom, power, and authority are with him; and that he can and does, Work all things after the counsel of his own will; and that he is of one mind and none can turn him; and that in all and every thing, both in providence and grace, which he hath ever done, or is now doing, or ever will do, he consulteth his own glorious honor and the best interest of his church.
3. I believe that God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit, loved a people from everlasting, which people compose that church which is called “the fullness of him that filleth all in all,” Eph. l. 23; and who are also emphatically denominated the “elect according to the foreknowledge of God the, Father,” 1 Peter, 1. 2. All those will eventually be saved in that way, and by just such means as a righteous God hath ordained should be made use of to bring about their complete deliverance from Satan, sin, and hell.
4. I believe that the ancient covenant of grace with all its appendages; together with the gospel and its glories and beauties; and also the oath and promises, and gracious declarations, and all the divine perfections of an immutable God, are for, and in the behalf of, his well beloved and chosen church.
5. I believe in the total depravity of man, and that all men by nature are dead in trespasses and sins, death having passed upon all men, for that all have sinned, Eph. 2. l; Rom. 5. l2; and an actual deliverance from this wretched and helpless state, is effected by an act of mere clemency on the part of him who loved all and every one of those whom he thus rescueth from eternal ruin by an act of his grace.
6. I believe that Christ the Son of God, engaged in eternity to be the Deliverer and Saviour of all those persons whom the Father gave to him in covenant; and that in the fullness of time he actually came into this world and suffered, and died in their stead, and rose again for their justification, and now liveth in glory for them.
7. I believe that to all and every one of those persons, thus beloved by the Father from everlasting, and in time redeemed by the Son; the Holy Spirit is sent for the purpose of quickening, and enlightening, and preparing them for glory above; and that this Holy Spirit never was, nor can be, defeated in his design and work with those persons composing the true catholic church, or the mystical body of Christ.
8. I believe that all the ways, and works, and means, which the God of heaven hath ordained to make use of in effecting the salvation of men, ought, so far as they are binding on us, to be made use of by us, that we thereby may be benefitted, and the Lord God honored and adored.
9. I believe the Old and the New Testament to be the true and only written word of God; and that the Lord hath ordained that this his written word, and the preaching of the gospel shall be the chief means whereby to accomplish the conversion of sinners, and the edification of saints; and that whereever those means are sent, it is the duty of all men to attend upon them in due order, and also to believe the report which those means make, which thing can be done as easily as to believe the report of common things, when such reports are made. Yes, the report of the gospel can be believed, and often is, by natural men, or men in a natural state. But to believe the written word of God, and to receive the gospel, as preached by the Lord’s true sent servants, TO THE SALVATION OF THE SOUL, is effected in no other way than by the energetic influence of divine grace in the heart of the man so believing the written word of God, and so receiving the gospel preached.
10. I believe that the bodies as well as the souls of elect persons, are the purchase of a Redeemer’s blood; consequently their bodies will be raised from their graves, and their souls re-enter them in a day yet to come, and so both bodies and souls ascend with Christ to glory; and that the happiness of the saints, and the misery of the wicked, are alike interminable.
11. I believe in the doctrine of eternal union of Christ and his church; and that in time, this church receiveth divine life, and light, and glory, and beauty, and wisdom, and strength, and comfort, and joy, and peace, and faith, and hope from Christ, her covenant head; and that those things thus received from him, make up what we call, vital union between Christ and his people. And as they are thus brought to believe in the Lord of glory, and from him to receive eternal life, they shall never perish, for “who shall lay any thing to the charge -of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth,” Rom. 8. 33. 7
12. I believe that Christ as a substitute, stood in the room and place of his church and people and for them magnified the law, and satisfied divine justice, and brought in everlasting righteousness, and bore in his own body upon the tree their iniquities, shame and guilt, and thereby discharged their whole debt of sin; and by reason thereof, those his beloved ones, will never suffer the vengeance of eternal fire.
The above points of the gospel, I do most cordially and soberly believe in, and receive, and defend from the pulpit and press."
Now, it is clear that Osbourn, like all the first great leaders of the Hardshell denomination, believed in Gospel means. As a note it is interesting that Osbourn was one of the elders who ordained C. B. Hassell and who later died at the home of Hassell in 1850.
Notice how he upholds duty faith, a truth denied by today's Hardshells. He spoke of the "duty of all men to attend upon them in due order, and also to believe the report."
Again, today's Hardshells are not primitive.