He published the Word
1829 – Cephas and Stella Bennett arrived in Calcutta, having sailed from Philadelphia the previous May. After spending several months observing the printing ministry of William Carey in India, they continued on to Maulmain, Burma, arriving on January 14, 1830. Cephas was born to the godly Rev. and Mrs. Alfred Bennett, pastor of the Baptist church in Homer, N.Y on March 20, 1804. Alfred was greatly used of the Lord in advancing the cause of foreign missions so it wasn’t unusual that his son would hear the “call of the heathen.” Cephas became burdened to preach as well as to print the word, so when he returned to America because of poor health in 1839, he was ordained and returned to the field in 1842. He had taken an American press with him, and his work was so efficient that in 1837, a tract was given to practically every Burman in Rangoon, who could read. Hundreds daily sought the missionaries to learn about Jesus, and many were saved through this effort. Large quantities of Bibles, New Testaments, portions of scriptures, innumerable books, besides tracts were made available. In 1834 Bennett founded the Maulmain Free School, which enrolled 122 children. At one time his was the only press in the world that could print in several languages, allowing him to provide the gospel to millions. Bro. Cephas Bennett finally left the field at age 77, having served in Burma for fifty years. [Henry C. Vedder, A Short History of Baptist Missions Philadelphia: Judson Press, 1927), p. 99. This Day in Baptist History II: Cummins and Thompson, BJU Press: Greenville, S.C. 2000 A.D. 543-44.] Prepared by Dr. Greg J. Dixon
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He went out ten years before Carey
1847 – The constitution was adopted for the Republic of Liberia under the auspices of The American Colonization Society, who had sponsored a group of Americo-Liberians – men of color – that had come to this country in 1822. Prior to that, West Africa had become known as the “white missionaries graveyard”, as the graves of those who had been swallowed up by malaria and other diseases that the “Dark Continent” had seemed waiting for them attested. But the Black preachers, freedmen from America, thrived and not only were received by the natives, but established thriving churches as well. They were men like Lott Carey, who is known as the “Father of Western African Missions”, and Collin Teague. Others such as David George went on to minister in Freetown in 1792, the Capitol of Sierra Leone, the British Crown Colony. These men were a part of the fifty Black missionaries sent out from the converts of George Leile, a freed slave, who left America in 1783 and established a Baptist church in Jamaica, ten years before William Carey went to India. Paul said, Art thou called being a servant? care not for it: but if thou mayest be made free, use it rather [1Co 7:21]. [“Sierra Leone,” Microsoft Encarta 97 Encyclopedia. 1993-96 Midrosoft Corp. This Day in Baptist History II: Cummins and Thompson, BJU Press: Greenville, S.C. 2000 A.D. pp. 529-31.]
Prepared by Dr. Greg J. Dixon
Two brothers were immersed and became Baptists
December 12, 1841 – Mr. Robert Haldane died in Edinburgh, Scotland. He was born on Feb. 28, 1764, in London and was trained at Dundee and Edinburgh. James Alexander Haldane, his brother, was born at Dundee on July 14, 1768, and was trained at the same schools and both served in the British navy, and in 1786 they inherited a large estate. Robert Haldane became a great writer and philanthropist, giving $350,000 for charitable purposes within fifteen years and during his lifetime educating 300 ministers of the Gospel at an expense of £100,000. James was also converted to Christ early in life, travelled throughout Scotland as an evangelist, and was ordained in 1799 as an independent pastor in Edinburgh. Robert and James were outstanding men, and “as the Church of Scotland had no use for unauthorized preachers, they worked independently, trained men, building and endowing tabernacles, founding a Society for Propagating the Gospel at Home.” When the reports of Carey in India began to circulate, Robert…devoted £35,000 to the work…” even though it meant supporting Baptist work. Many of the ministers that Haldane supported began to study the subject of Baptism and became convinced to be immersed and became Baptists. Repudiating pedobaptism, both brothers, in time, were immersed, and in 1808 they became Baptists. Robert authored meaningful volumes of which some still are in existence. His Exposition of the Epistle to the Romans, is still reprinted in our day. James continued his preaching, without pay, for fifty years until his death in 1851.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins Thompson /, pp. 518-20.
Joshua labored with Mr. Carey in translating the Scripture
December 04, 1837 – Joshua Marshman died, and was laid to rest in “God’s Acre.” That plot in India that is now consecrated by the mingled dust of generations of missionaries who await the resurrection. Marshman, born in a Baptist home in Wiltshire, England, on April 20, 1768 knew early the message of saving grace. When he was 24, he moved to Bristol to supervise a school of the Broadmead Baptist Church. While there he also took classes at the Seminary, and for five years studied Hebrew and Syriac. Carey had gone to India in 1793, and the missionary reports had stirred the hearts of the Marshmans for the cause of missions. The Marshmans applied to the mission, were accepted, and sailed in May, arriving in Calcutta in Oct. of 1799. They opened a young ladies’ boarding school which became the largest of its kind in India. This supplemented their support, and all the profits went to the Serampore Mission. They also established two more such schools which work was carried on by Hannah Marshman. She continued on until her death in 1847. Joshua had not been robust in his youth, and at the time of his leaving had been in poor health but the Lord undertook for His servant and he said that he had not paid out a single sovereign on medicine in 36 years. Joshua labored with Mr. Carey in translating the Scripture, preaching and other missions work. He mastered Chinese and translated the Scriptures into a Chines Bible. He printed the works of Confucius and used the profits to place God’s Word in the hands of the disciples of Confucius. On one occasion he was mobbed and on another he was arrested. The Carey’s and Marshman’s used £80,000 of their own money to save the property when the young men took over the mission after the old men died off.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins Thompson /, pp. 505-07.