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178 — June 27 – This Day in Baptist History Past


Living Sacrifices for God’s Honour

Roger Holland had come from the affluent family of Sir Robert Holland, and in the first year of the reign of Bloody Mary, Roger married Elizabeth, a Christian maid of Master Kempton to which Roger was an apprentice.  Apparently, Roger Holland became a member of the Hill Cliffe Baptist Church about this time. “Two of the signatories to the letter of 1654 from Hill Cliffe are of the same name, Holland. This points to, at any rate, a probability of his having been a Hill Cliffe Baptist, perhaps minister there.”

On one occasion as forty people gathered for a service of prayer and the expounding of the Word, twenty-seven of them were carried before Sir Roger Cholmly. Some of the women made their escape, twenty-two were committed to Newgate, who continued in prison seven weeks. Previous to their examination, they were informed by the keeper, Alexander, that nothing more was requisite to procure their discharge, than to hear Mass. Easy as this condition may seem, these martyrs valued their purity of conscience more than loss of life or property; hence, thirteen were burnt, seven at Smithfield, and six at Brentford; two died in prison, and the other seven were providentially preserved…They were sent to Newgate, June 16, 1558, and were executed on the twenty-seventh.

As was so often the case, Roger Holland’s death at Smithfield instead of destroying the faith of the Baptists only made it stronger. His relatives and friends were afterward more determined than ever to uphold the principles for which he died! May we with these heroes of the faith and with the hymn writer state and mean, “Thou (my Lord) art more than life to me,” for then our lives shall be in a true sense “living sacrifices” for God’s honor.

Dr. Dale R. Hart: Adapted from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I. (Thompson/Cummins) pp. 261 – 262.

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Bucknell University
 We must always remember that God rewards faithfulness, not fame.  We certainly rejoice over those who have made a great impact on their world, but must not forget those who have labored in obscurity.  Daniel Erastus Burt is an example of one of those unsung heroes of the faith.
Daniel E. Burt was born in Cambridge Springs, PA, on Nov. 4, 1835, in his father’s Tannery plant.  He received his theological training in Lewisburg, PA., at what is now Bucknell University.  For 35 years, he was the pastor of small rural churches in western N.Y., and northwestern, PA.  Because the churches were unable to support his family, he often doubled as the local school master.
After his retirement, a newspaper asked him to write a series of articles summarizing his years in the ministry.  The yellowed clippings of these stories are still a blessing to his descendants.  In one he tells of two sisters, professed infidels that passed by the church one Monday evening during the services and decided to go in and make fools of themselves.
They went forward at the invitation each night feigning their need of spiritual help.  One night after the service with only the Pastor, the evangelist, her sister and one other person present, as the little maid that the Lord Jesus raised from the dead, the older sister confessed that she had such a burden of sin and guilt that she couldn’t take it any longer and fell on her face before the Lord and heard Him say, “Thy sins be forgiven thee.”   She was later sent to Yokohama, Japan as a missionary.  Pastor Burt died on July 29, 1908, and his faithful wife, Orpha, followed him into that eternal land of joy on Feb. 6, 1922.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon, adapted from:  This Day in Baptist History III (David L. Cummins), pp. 75-77.

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