Tag Archives: England

“Bloody Mary,” daughter of Henry VIII died November 17, 1558


Bloody Mary Queen of EnglandAmerican Minute with Bill Federer

“Bloody Mary,” daughter of Henry VIII, reigned 5 years, during which time her government sentenced 300 people to death.

On October 16, 1555, facing their execution, Bishop Hugh Latimer exhorted Nicholas Ridley:

“Play the man, Master Ridley. We shall this day light such a candle, by God’s grace, in England, as I trust shall never be put out.”

When Mary died, NOVEMBER 17, 1558, her half-sister Elizabeth became Queen.

Elizabeth, the daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, replied at her Coronation in 1558, when questioned as to the presence of Christ in the Sacrament:

“Christ was the Word that spake it,
He took the bread and brake it,
And what that Word did make it,
I do believe and take it.”

Elizabeth continued the Church of England begun when her father, Henry VIII, separated from Rome, though “Puritans” objected to many rituals being retained.

During Elizabeth’s 45 year reign, Shakespeare wrote plays, Francis Bacon began the scientific revolution and Sir Walter Raleigh began a colony he named Virginia, in honor of the “Virgin Queen Elizabeth.”

Virginia’s Charter, 1584, stated:

“Elizabeth, by the Grace of God of England…Defender of the Faith…grant to our trusty and well beloved servant Walter Raleigh…to discover…barbarous lands…not actually possessed of any Christian Prince, nor inhabited by Christian People…

Upon…finding…such remote lands…it shall be necessary for the safety of all men…to live together in Christian peace…

Ordinances…agreeable to…the laws…of England, and also so as they be not against the true Christian faith.”

In 1588, the Invincible Spanish Armada sailed to invade England with 130 ships, 1,000 iron guns, 1,500 brass guns, 7,000 sailors, 18,000 soldiers, plus 30,000 soldiers from the Spanish Netherlands.

Queen Elizabeth told her troops, August 19, 1588:

“Let tyrants fear…I know I have the body but of a weak and feeble woman; but I have the heart and stomach of a king, and of a king of England too, and think foul scorn that…Spain, or any prince of Europe, should dare to invade the borders of my realm…

I myself will take up arms, I myself will be your general…Your valour…shall shortly have a famous victory over those enemies of my God, of my kingdom, and of my people.”

The smaller, more maneuverable English vessels proved difficult for the Spanish to catch.

At midnight, July 28, 1588, Sir Francis Drake set eight English ships on fire and floated them downwind to the closely anchored Spanish ships.

In a panic, the Spanish ships cut anchor, and then were hit by a hurricane.

With Spain’s Armada destroyed, its monopoly of the seas ended, England was established as a major European power, and Holland, Sweden, and France joined in founding colonies in America.

Queen Elizabeth, the last Tudor monarch, stated in 1566:

“I am your Queen. I will never be by violence constrained to do anything. I thank God I am endued with such qualities that if I were turned out of the Realm in my petticoat I were able to live in any place in Christendom.”

Queen Elizabeth told the House of Commons in The Golden Speech, November 30, 1601:

“Though God hath raised me high, yet this I count the glory of my Crown, that I have reigned with your loves…

I do not so much rejoice that God hath made me to be a Queen, as to be a Queen over so thankful a people…

The title of a King is a glorious title, but…we well know…that we also are to yield an account of our actions before the Great Judge.”

When rumors arose of a plot to assassinate her, Elizabeth executed dozens, including her cousin who was under her protection, Mary Queen of Scots – the mother of England’s next monarch, King James I.

Of her epitaph, Elizabeth said:

“I am no lover of pompous title, but only desire that my name may be recorded in a line or two, which shall express my name, my virginity, the years of my reign, and the reformation of religion under it.”


Bill FedererThe Moral Liberal contributing editor, William J. Federer, is the bestselling author of “Backfired: A Nation Born for Religious Tolerance no Longer Tolerates Religion,” and numerous other books. A frequent radio and television guest, his daily American Minute is broadcast nationally via radio, television, and Internet. Check out all of Bill’s books here.

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276 – Oct. 03 –This Day in Baptist History Past


 

 

Clarke’s church became distinctly Baptist

John Clarke was born in Suffolk County, England on October 03, 1609, and received pedo-baptism five days later. Because the University of Leyden shows a “Johannes Clarke” among its students in 1635, some conclude that he attended that famous Dutch school and while there became acquainted with Dutch Baptists. Clarke was a reputable physician, occasionally a lawyer, an able statesman and diplomat, and a successful Baptist pastor. He was certainly an important instrument in the establishment of religious liberty in Rhode Island and the American colonies. He along with many other early Baptists in America, step by step embraced Baptist principles. Often they left the English state church (Anglican) and joined the ranks of the Dissenters because they were moved  by the horrible persecutions of the sects, and then they were ultimately persuaded of believers baptism and freedom of conscience as biblical truth. The corruption among the state-church clergy, spiritual deadness were also other catalysts. The belief that Baptist principles were rooted in the Word of God caused John Clarke to separate from the Puritans in New England. We do know that he was one that was relieved of his weapons by  Boston authorities in 1637 on suspicion of being “tinged with anabaptism.”  There was a church in Portsmouth by 1638 that had two factions. One group held for the authority of the “inner light,” and the other held for the authority of the written Scripture. The controversy led to a division, and the church scattered. Clarke led a group and set up a church at Newport, Rhode Island, where, under his leadership, it became distinctly Baptist. Satan tried to destroy this church through schisms of various kinds, but it remained for the rest of the century, as one of the leading Baptist churches in America.

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: From: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 410-11.

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246 – Sept. 03 – This Day in Baptist History Past


 

 

He evangelized a wild and barbarous people

 Sept. 03, 1884 – W. Holman Bentley sailed from England to the Congo to begin his second tour of missionary service, married for the first time with four other men and their families. Holman was the son of Rev. William Bentley, Baptist minister at Sudsbury, Suffolk, England. Holman was born Oct. 30, 1855. At 17 young Holman was reading from the Hebrew Psalter and Greek New Testament, and at 19 was baptized into the Downs Chapel (Baptist) at Clapton. He became actively involved in witnessing. He was appointed as a missionary by the Baptist Mission Society on Jan. 15, 1879. The Congo missionaries had many trials including escapes from wild animals, disease and cannibals. Bentley served longer than any of the others who left with him in 1879. Even though he only lived to be fifty he translated the N.T. into Congolese and gave the people a complete dictionary and grammar. He saw over 1200 baptized and according to historians saw a whole district of wild, barbarous people almost completely evangelized and civilized, if not Christianized. [H.M. Bentley, W. Holman Bentley-The Life and labors of a Congo Pioneer (London: religious Tract Society, 1907), p8.

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: From: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp.  481- 83.

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220 – August, 08 – This Day in Baptist History Past


 

JohnLightfoot

Baptism has always been by Immersion                                                                        

At Westminster in England on August 8, 1644, after another warm dispute, it was voted that “’pouring or sprinkling water on the face’ was sufficient and most expedient.” This event was reported by the historian, Dr. John Lightfoot, who was present. Out of this meeting came the Westminster Confession of Faith, “a creedal standard for all Presbyterian churches.” This conference was called on June 1, 1643. Some Episcopalians, Independents, and Puritans were present but no Baptists. Lightfoot’s entry for Aug. 7, 1644 tells of a “great heat” in the debate over the issue of baptism.  Rabbi Coleman, a great Hebrew scholar and Marshall, a great pulpit orator insisted that the Hebrew word tauveleh - dipping, demanded immersion “overhead.”  The vote was 24 for dipping, 25 against it. How did this Presbyterian body, without a Baptist in it, come to such a “great heat” on this subject of immersion if it were a novelty and among believers in England at that time? The answer is clear. Immersion was practiced from the days of the N.T. Dr. Philip Schaff, a member of the German Reformed Church, wrote:  In England immersion was the normal mode down to the middle of the 17th century. The New Catholic Edition of the Holy Bible with the imprimatur of Francis Cardinal Spellman states: “St. Paul alludes to the manner in which Baptism was ordinarily conferred in the primitive church, by immersion. The descent into the water is suggestive of the descent of the body into the grave, and the ascent is suggestive of the resurrection to a new life.” The ordinance of believer’s baptism has historical perpetuity from the days of the apostles until now.

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: From: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 325-26.

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William Penn died July 30, 1718


William PennAmerican Minute with Bill Federer

He was arrested and imprisoned in the Tower of London eight months for being a Quaker.

Later King Charles II gave him land in America as repayment of a debt owed to his father.

On this land he started a colony and invited persecuted Christians of Europe to join his “Holy Experiment” of religious toleration.

Soon Quakers, Mennonites, Pietists, Amish, Anabaptists, Lutherans, Reformed, Moravians, Scotch-Irish Presbyterians, Dunkers (German Baptist), Brethren, Schwenckfelders, French Huguenots and other Protestant Christians arrived in Pennsylvania.

Who was he?

William Penn, who died JULY 30, 1718.

William Penn named his capital city Philadelphia, which means “Brotherly Love.”

Lutheran missionary Johannes Campanius translated the very first book published in the Algonquin Indian language, Martin Luther’s Small Catechism.

He dedicated Philadelphia’s first church, Gloria Dei “Old Swede’s” Church in 1646. Penn’s religious tolerance allowed the church to grow and build their present church building in 1698.

In 1695, the Merion Friends (Quaker) Meeting House was built. It is the oldest church building in Pennsylvania and second oldest Friends meeting house in the United States.

In 1695, Philadelphia’s Christ Church was built. It is called “the Nation’s Church,” as George Washington, Betsy Ross, Benjamin and Deborah Franklin, and their daughter, Sarah Franklin Bache, worshiped there, along with Signers of the Declaration John Adams, Benjamin Rush, Francis Hopkinson, Joseph Hewes, Robert Morris, James Wilson and George Ross.

In 1711, Old Trinity Episcopal Church was built in Philadelphia.

In 1732, the Seventh Day Dunkers (German Baptist Brethern) built Ephrata Cloister near Philadelphia.

They had the second German printing press in America and published the largest book in the colonies, “Martyrs Mirror,” listing Christian martyrs from Christ until 1660.

In 1733, Philadelphia allowed the first English-speaking Catholic Church in the world after the Reformation – St. Joseph Church.

It was the only place in the British Empire where a public Catholic church service took place legally. Marquis de Lafayette and Comte de Rochambeau worshiped there.

On May 21, 1789, the first General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America was held in Philadelphia. Signer of the Declaration John Witherspoon preached the first sermon at that assembly.

Philadelphia is the birthplace of the Methodist Episcopal churches in America, with St. George’s Church, built in 1769, being the denomination’s oldest church building in continuous service in the world.

John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, sent the church a communion chalice.

St. George’s pastor, Francis Asbury, was the first Methodist bishop.

He traveled 270,000 miles on horseback and ordained more than 4,000 ministers, including Richard Allen and Absalom Jones, the first African American Lay Preachers of Methodism in 1785.

In 1792, Absalom Jones started the African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas, being the oldest black Episcopal congregation in the United States.

In 1794, Richard Allen started the African Methodist Episcopal Church, building “Mother Bethel,” the first A.M.E. Church in America.

In 1796, also out of St. George’s, Rev. “Black Harry” Hosier started the African Zoar Church.

St. George’s appointed Mary Thorne as the first woman class leader.

Philadelphia’s first synagogue, Mikveh Israel, was built in 1782 by Sephardic Jews from Spain, Portugal and the West Indies, many of whom fled from New York in 1776, when the British captured the city.

Contributors to the building fund were Benjamin Franklin, Robert Morris-Signer of the Declaration, and Haym Solomon, Polish Jew financier of the American Revolution.

Beginning in 1845, Rabbi Isaac Leeser of Philadelphia’s Mikveh Israel synagogue produced the first Jewish translation of the Bible into English to be published in the United States.

When Mikveh Israel synagogue burned in 1872, Philadelphia’s Christ Church contributed to rebuild it. The two congregations have a long custom of sharing a fellowship-dinner once a year which alternates between their two buildings.

In 1795, the first Ashkenazic Jewish synagogue in the Western Hemisphere was founded in Philadelphia, Congregation Rodeph Shalom.

Pennsylvania’s Charter, granted March 4, 1681, stated:

“Whereas our trusty and well beloved subject, William Penn, esquire, son and heir of Sir William Penn, deceased, out of a commendable desire to enlarge our English Empire…

and also to reduce the savage natives by gentle and just manners to the love of civil society and Christian religion, hath humbly besought leave of us to transport an ample colony unto…parts of America not yet cultivated and planted.”

William Penn wrote in his Charter of Privileges for Pennsylvanians 1701:

“…because no people can be truly happy though under the greatest enjoyments of civil liberties if abridged of the freedom of their consciences as to their religious profession and worship.”

William Penn’s “holy experiment” of “Brotherly Love” resulted in Philadelphia providentially being where the Declaration of Independence and Constitution were written, as well as the city being the first Capital of the United States.

Get the book, The Original 13-A Documentary History of Religion in America’s First Thirteen States


Bill FedererThe Moral Liberal contributing editor, William J. Federer, is the bestselling author of “Backfired: A Nation Born for Religious Tolerance no Longer Tolerates Religion,” and numerous other books. A frequent radio and television guest, his daily American Minute is broadcast nationally via radio, television, and Internet. Check out all of Bill’s bookshere.

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215 – August, 03 – This Day in Baptist History Past


Hanham Baptist Church

300th Anniversary of

Broadmead Church – Now Hanham Baptist

Prayer in England brought the Toleration Act

Pastor George Fownes proposed that the congregation seriously consider the steps that should be taken if the services were interrupted by law officers. On August 03, 1680, they determined to continue their services unless the magistrate himself used violence. This tactic worked well until Dec. 18, 1681, when the civil, ecclesiastical, and military powers invaded the house of God on the Lord’s Day and Pastor Fownes was sent to  prison at Newgate.  After six weeks in jail, he appeared before the judge and was acquitted due to a flaw in the warrant. Returning to his flock, for safety’s sake, they began holding services in the fields rather than in their church building, regardless of the weather. In March of 1682 Pastor Fownes was arrested again and committed to Glouchester Jail for six months. His persecutors declared that he would not leave the jail alive. The pastor served as his own attorney and the jury returned a verdict of “not guilty”, but he was returned to the prison in spite of the verdict. When his six months were ended he demanded his freedom and a bond was demanded of him and the promise to stop preaching. He requested a judicial inquest. Two justices appeared before the judge and said that if he was released “he would draw all the country after him.” He was held for two more years in prison until the Lord in mercy released him in death in Dec. of 1685. After the Act of Toleration, the Broadmead Baptist Church, in Bristol, England finally knew peace, and Pastor Fowne’s son, George Fownes, became pastor in 1693. In 1695 “the church built a new meeting house 50 feet long by 40 feet, with no debt.”

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: From: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 318-19.

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202 – July 20 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST


 

Pearce, Samuel

Ten years that equaled a century

It is for some to go, and for others to hold the rope for others that go to the heathen world. Such was the lot of the Rev. Samuel Pearce who was ordained in 1789 as pastor of the Cannon Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, England in which he served until his death on Oct. 10, 1799. Though it only lasted ten years, William Cathcart said, “Measured by usefulness instead of years this young pastor preached for at least a century.” Pearce was a dear friend of Wm. Carey before the beginning of the missionary enterprise, and was one of the strongest advocates of the worldwide mission’s cause that the world has ever known. He desired to go with Carey but because of his physical frailties, the Missionary Society convinced him that he was of greater value for the cause of missions in England. His eloquence in the pulpit stirred many throughout England and Ireland to volunteer for and support of the work in India. As a staunch prayer warrior, Pearce carried every matter to the Lord and expected and received answers to his prayers. In 1794 he wrote to the ministers in the U.S. urging the formation of the American Baptist foreign missionary society, and credit must be given to Pastor Pearce, for the seed fell on good soil and bore fruit a hundredfold. Pearce was born in Birmingham, England, in July 20, 1766. As a boy he experienced seasons of great conviction as he considered his sin. When he was fifteen he saw a man die who cried out, “I am damned forever.” He was filled with terror for a year and hearing Rev. Birt of Plymouth, England, he was pointed to the Lamb of God, and found full assurance and peace with God. He was trained in the Bristol College. At 33 years of age he fell victoriously asleep in Jesus, with his dear wife comforting him.

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: From: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 297-98.

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193 – July 11 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST


 

Baptist multiplication

The Baptists of England, besides the physical persecution, had undergone vicious verbal

attacks misrepresenting their profession of faith. Therefore they found it necessary to set forth

a confession of faith to publicly declare their belief’s before all.

The first was put forth in the name of seven congregations in 1643. By the year 1689 the seven churches represented had expanded to “upwards of one hundred baptized congregations in England and Wales (denying Arminianism) being met together in London, from the third of the seventh month to the eleventh of the same, 1689, to consider some things that might be for the glory of God, and the good of these congregations.

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: From: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 284-85.

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130 — May 09 – This Day in Baptist History Past


“So He Slew Me with the Words of His Mouth”
Founder of Brown Universitry

Morgan Edwards was born in Wales, May 9, 1722. He was educated at Bristol College under Bernard Foskett, its first president. He was ordained June 1, 1757, in Cork, Ireland, where he labored for nine years. He returned to England and preached for a year in Rye, in Sussex, when, through the recommendation of Dr. Gill and others, on the application of the Baptist church of Philadelphia, he came to that city and church, and entered upon the pastorate May 23, 1761.
At age sixteen he broke with his Anglican heritage and embraced the principles of the Baptists. This cleavage could have been caused by the infectious enthusiasm of the young Baptist missionaries who were sent out in such large numbers that hardly a village in the eastern and western valleys of Monmouthshire was not visited.  When he was pastor of the Baptist Church of Philadelphia many years later, he reminisced in a sermon as follows:
I remember the time (and the place too) when I first gave myself up as a lost man; for then I was halting between two opinions about it.  Fearing it was so, made me uneasy, and hope it might not be so, kept me from yielding to it.  But this sentence stuck on my mind in a light that it was not wont to do, ‘I will by no means clear the Guilty!’ then said I, I am gone, for I am guilty: if I am not damned God must be a liar. So He slew me with the word of His mouth. Then this commandment came, and I died.  Then I knew what sort of thing despair was. And you cannot imagine what jolt I felt, when I learnt so much of the Gospel as to know it was possible for me to be saved, and that God might stand to His word, and not send me to hell.
He was the founder of Brown University, at first called Rhode Island College. It is well known that this enterprise was started in the Philadelphia Baptist Association in its meeting in 1762, and Morgan Edwards was “the principal mover in this matter,” as he was the most active agent in securing funds for the permanent support of the institution. To Morgan Edwards more than to any other man, are the Baptist churches of America indebted for their grand list of institutions of learning, with their noble endowments and wide-spread influence.

Dr. Dale R. Hart: Adapted from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins Thompson /, pp. 189 -190
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128—May 07 – This Day in Baptist History Past


Andrew Fuller

Small-Town Preacher with a Worldwide Vision

Gloomy and fatalistic high Calvinism held sway in the pulpits of England when Andrew Fuller was born in Wicken, Cambridgeshire, England, Feb. 6, l754. When about fourteen years of age he first became interested in religious exercises. This question arose in his mind, what is faith? He could not answer it, but he satisfied himself that it did not require an immediate response, and that he would learn in the future what it was. Nevertheless he was not as indifferent about his soul as in former times, and occasionally he was very unhappy. Once, with some boys in a blacksmith’s shop, while they were singing foolish songs, the words addressed to Elijah seemed to pierce his soul, — What doest thou here, Elijah? And he arose and left his companions. It was then in 1769, Andrew Fuller became a genuine believer in Christ. He was baptized and joined the church in Soham where his family attended. Fuller never received formal theological training, but his extraordinary gifting was apparent as he began preaching in the church at age 17.  He soon became pastor of a little Baptist church at Soham where he served until 1782. He then became the pastor of a vigorous church in Kettering, Northhamptonshire and remained there until his death.
Andrew Fuller’s deep concern for evangelism and world missions led to the formation of the Baptist Missionary Society on October 2, 1792. Fuller and a small assembly of pastors, including William Carey and John Thomas who later went to India joined together to form the society.
To recognize his contributions in theology, Princeton University awarded him a D.D. in 1798 and Yale did the same in 1805.  He declined both. Andrew Fuller contracted tuberculosis and passed away at age 61 on May 7, 1815.

Dr. Dale R. Hart: Adapted from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins Thompson /, pp. 186 – 187
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