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Agreement of the Settlers at Exeter in New Hampshire

Agreement of the Settlers at Exeter in New Hampshire


March 16, 1680

Exeter Combination fixedWhereas it hath pleased the Lord to moue the heart of our Dread Soveraigne Charles, by the grace of God, King of England, Scotland, France & Ireland, to grant license & liberty to sundry of his subjects to plant themselves in the westerne partes of America: Wee, his loyall subjects, brethren of the church of Exeter, situate & lying upon Piscataquacke, wth other inhabitants there, considering wth ourselves the holy will of god and our owne necessity, that we should not live whout wholsome lawes & government amongst us, of wch we are altogether destitute; doe in the name of Christ & in the sight of God combine ourselves together, to erect & set up amongst us such government as shall be to our best discerning, agreeable to the will of god, professing ourselves subjects to our Sovereign Lord King Charles, according to the Libertys of our English Colony of the Massachusetts & binding ourselves solemnely by the grace & helpe of Christ & in his name & fear to submit ourselves to such godly & christian laws as are established in the realme of England to our best knowledge, & to all other such lawes wch shall upon good grounds, be made & inacted amongst us according to God, yt we may live quietly & peaceablely together, in all godliness and honesty.

Signed by John Whelewright and thirty-four others.

The Elders or Rulers Oath

You shall swear by the great and dreadful Name of the High God, Maker and Governor of Heaven and earth and by the Lord Jesus Christ, the Prince of the Kings and rulers of the earth, that in his Name and fear you will rule and govern his people according to the righteous will of God, ministering justice and judgment on the workers of iniquite, and ministering due incouragement and countenance to well doers, protecting of the people so far as in you lieth, by the help of God from foreigne annoyance and inward desturbance, that they may live a quiet and peacabble life in all godliness and honesty. So God be helpful and gracious to you and yours in Christ Jesus.

The Oath of the People

We do swear by the Great and dreadful Name of the High God, Maker and Governor of heaven and earth, and by the Lord Jesus Christ, the King and Saviour of his people, that in his Name and fear, we will submit ourselves to be ruled and governed according to the will and word of God, and such wholsome laws and ordinances as shall be derived therefrom by our honored Rulers and the lawful assistants, with the consent of the people, and that we will be ready to assist them by the help of God, in the administration of justice and preservation of the peace, with our bodies and goods and best endeavors according to God. So God protect and save us and ours in Jesus Christ.

Source: Hammond, Isaac Weare (1831-1890)., Editor. Town Papers: Documents Relating to Towns in New Hampshire. Concord, N.H. : Parsons B. Cogswell, state printer (publisher), 1882.  The copyright of these documents is held in the Public Domain. Formatted for the Internet © 2014 Steve Farrell and The Moral Liberal.

They Were Believers is researched, compiled, and edited (with occasional commentary and explanatory notes) by Steve Farrell, Founder and Editor In Chief of The Moral Liberal. Copyright © 2012-2014 Steve Farrell.

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William Andrew Dillard

An exceedingly marvelous thing occurred on the Day called Pentecost long, long ago. It is recorded in Acts Chapter Two.
The baptism of the Lord’s church in Holy Spirit presence and empowerment fulfilled Jesus’ promise to His little flock to impart to it the Comforter Who would lead it in power and illumination throughout the age.
Some folks question whether that same Holy Spirit continues with the Lord’s churches today or should the church be praying for a Pentecost repeat.
God’s promises never fail. There will not be a repeat of Pentecost anymore than there will be a repeat of Calvary’s cross. But the evidence of Holy Spirit’s presence is not as religious men of carnal minds think or in the antics of religious charlatans who appeal to the flesh nature. The most solid and obvious evidence of continued Holy Spirit presence, to the mind of this writer, lies in church members’ spiritual understanding, acceptance, and agreement with the faith once delivered to the saints, Jude 3. This distinguishes the Lord’s true churches from all other religious bodies on earth. And while the Lord’s churches are not cookie cutter entities, in many respects they are highly unified in core doctrines which the entire religious world rejects out of hand. Consider these specifics: 1) The hereditary depravity of the total man, 2) Salvation by grace through faith plus nothing else; 3) Eternal security of the believer in the Lord Jesus Christ; 4) Baptism as a burial in deep water of a professed believer by the authority of a New Testament church; 4) The perpetuation of the local, visible nature of the church, and its origin by Jesus during His personal ministry on earth. Other points of unity might well be mentioned, but these are all held as basic Bible truths by the Lord’s true churches. While being emphatically denied by the religious world at large, they are the basis of the churches assembling to worship and to advance the work of the Great Commission. How may this amazing thing be true? Could it be that the people in the Lord’s churches are smarter than everyone else on earth, especially those in other religious communities? Surely, that is not so. Thus, herein lies the marvel of the age, the greatest and most obvious evidence of the abiding work of the Holy Spirit in modern day churches of the Lord. These spiritual things are not carnally discerned. Their knowledgeable acceptance in the hearts of God’s people together with the marvelous unity and harmony they provide fulfill the quest of the spiritual student searching for such evidence. Though he certainly could, he actually needs look no further than this for irrefutable evidence that the Holy Spirit abides with His churches, and has done so since Pentecost.

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William Andrew Dillard

Parson to Person
Sometimes the question is asked, “Where should I start reading in the Bible?” Well, for the initial reader, I really would not recommend the genealogy chapters, although they are important. There are better places to “wade in” to the Word. For instance, if one likes suspense, adventure, romance, and a general all around thriller, there could be no better than Genesis.
However if one wants to be spellbound by the enormous faithfulness of God to His faithful people, the first few chapters of Daniel fills the bill. If one wants poetry and praise, look into the Psalms. For those enamored with knowledge, understanding and wisdom, Job, Proverbs and Ecclesiastes are the books to read.
The great blessings of faithfulness, and curse of infidelity are impressive in Exodus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. War in conquest and defeat are the offerings of Joshua, Judges, and the books of Samuel. The Chronicles and Kings yield up much history of the ruling dynasties of Israel and of Judah, while the prophets’ books lay bare their burdens of condemnation of sin, and of hope in the end.
The gospels relate much of the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ, the fulfillment of the Old Covenant and the foundation of the New Covenant underscoring the terrible, but altogether loving sacrifice of God’s only begotten Son for all who would trust in Him.
Acts speaks of the empowerment of the Lord’s church and its initial mission efforts into all the world. The apostolic epistles are filled with doctrines that are to govern the Lord’s people throughout this age, and Revelation reveals the final victorious Christ Jesus together with events leading up to His displayed supremacy, and the final abode of His people in a new creation of which New Jerusalem is the focal point. Incidentally, since understanding Revelation depends on a good understanding of all the rest of the Bible, I usually do not recommend it for the initial reader, but I never dissuade anyone from reading it as much as they like.
So, Perhaps I have helped some along the way to choose an introduction to the eternal Word. It is prayed that all men might come to realize that mastery of the Bible as much as possible is the most important thing they will ever do. The “where to start” question is a thrill. It means someone is going to be exposed to life altering Holy Writ to their benefit and to the glory of God. Have you read any of the Word lately?

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292 – Oct. 19 – This Day in Baptist History Past


His head was set on a pole, in front of his church

October 19, 1661 – John James, a Sabbatarian Baptist was arrested. His congregation met in Bulstrake Alley, Whitechapel, London. It was in the afternoon when a justice of the peace entered to disperse the assembly and ordered Mr. James to cease preaching, which the little man promptly declined. He was then taken from the pulpit and transported to Newgate prison where he was charged with having used seditious language in his sermon which James denied in no uncertain terms.

In Nov. he appeared in the dock and pleaded, “not guilty,” and afterward a verdict was given against him upon the evidence of profligate persons. James petitioned King Charles to intercede, but the King treated him with contempt and decreed that the sentence must be fulfilled and that he was to be hanged. To the sentence Rev. James responded by quoting several scriptures including, “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints,” and “He that toucheth the Lord’s people toucheth the apple of His eye.” He also told them that they were going to bring innocent blood down upon their heads. He closed by saying, “I have no more to say for myself, but one word for my Lord…The Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is the King of England.”

On the 26th of Nov. James was dragged…from Newgate to Tyburn, the place of execution…James said, “I do own the title of a baptized believer…The executioner said, ‘The Lord receive your soul, sir,’ to which he replied, I thank thee,’ and added, ‘Father into thy hands I commit my spirit.’ His head was set on a pole, in front of his church, where his people had met in peace.

Dr. Greg J. Dixon from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 433-35

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Equipped To Comfort  


2 Corinthians 1:3, 4

Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God,” 2 Corinthians 1:3, 4.

God is the source of all of our comfort. This is a reason to praise Him. The greatest comfort we can know is the comfort we receive when we are resting in the love of God. Why does God want us to know this level of comfort? He wants us to know it so that we can use that experience to be comforting to others.

Notice how many times the word comfort or some variation of that word appears in today’s passage. God not only desires for us to be comforted, but to be comforting as well.

When we are able, through God, to find peace in times of trouble, God is preparing us. He is making us ready to give that same type of comfort to others. He wants to use our experience during tough times as a ministry tool.

How do you view your trials? Are you looking to God for comfort in those times? Have you been able to find comfort from the Lord. If you have found rest and comfort during a trial, are you using that experience to be a comfort to others? Are you actively seeking out those in similar circumstances to whom you can minister?




You must learn how to find comfort in the Lord before you can truly be a comfort to others.

Nathan Rogers

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Kiokee Baptist Appling, GA

Kiokee Baptist

Appling, Georgia

The Gospel is “the power of God unto Salvation”

The following account is found in the records of the Kiokee Church (Georgia), about the blessed conversion of “Brother Billy”, ‘about one hundred years old’, formerly a slave but at that time, ‘a  free man of color.’ This took place on July 17, 1841, and Billy united with the church. The evidence exists that slave members of some Baptist churches were allowed to vote. As with the white males, black male members were “assessed” for church expenses and required to attend business meetings. The female, black and white, did not vote in the business matters of the churches. The slave membership of many Baptist churches greatly outnumbered the whites, and thus the churches often appointed spiritually faithful slaves to serve as a discipline committee among their own. The churches chastened heir slave membership primarily for problems of morals and honesty, and they chastised their slaveholder members for these infractions as well as for cruelty and barbarity to their slaves. It is apparent that slaves were better off being owned by Christians than by unbelievers! Black slave preachers were licensed and ordained by the Baptist churches, and the impact of those slave preachers was unique! Much of the evangelism among the slaves resulted from the preaching on the plantations by these faithful men who were slaves twofold: first to the Lord Jesus Christ and then to an earthly master. Segregation in the services was always maintained. In some of the old church buildings in the areas where slavery was practiced, we can still observe “slave balconies.” In other church buildings a portion of the facility was designated for the slave members. However, Baptists in the South often assisted the former slaves by helping them establish their own churches.

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: From This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 292-93.


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He Ascended in the Clouds  


Acts 1:9-11

And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. . . . this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven,” Acts 1:9-11.


For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. . . . Immediately after the tribulation of those days . . . shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other” (Matt. 24:21-31).

For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. . . . But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. . . . For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thess. 4:16,17, 5:4-9). Enoch prophesied that at the end of the Great Tribulation He will return in the clouds with His children, who will escort Him to the earth to bring the wrath of God on the ungodly (Jude 14, 15). Revelation 1:7 states that “every eye shall see him.”




As the angels admonished the disciples, we must keep our heads out of the clouds and help win as many into the kingdom of God as we can before it is too late.

Robert Brock



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The Lord and the 23rd Psalm


The Lord and the 23rd Psalm


This passage has been on my mind all day long. Not the complete Psalm but the beginning of verse 1. This is the the part I reference. Psalm 23:1 – The LORD is my shepherd; This is the part I desire to look at.


There are many people that quote this passage and really claim that the “LORD is their shepherd. That causes me to wonder if they really understand what their statement really means.


Many that have voiced this statement has done so while being a token Christ like person and at the same time time keeping both feet solidly planted in the sordid vile sinfulness of this world.


When one makes the claim that the LORD is their shepherd that is a claim that they are owned by the shepherd. The ownership of one is a claim of complete and total obedience. This type of obedience is seldom practiced in Christianity today.


We do know that we live in this world and make our living in this world. What we must remember is we are not of this world. Ephesians 4 speaks of our mind being renewed. What this means is; as we apply the Word of God to our lives we become more dedicated to following Jesus Christ and living a life that glorifies God.


Here is my problem – why do people say the LORD is my shepherd when they do not follow the shepherd? Let us examine this statement point by point.


1. 2Ti_2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

Study – This is more work than simply reading the Word. Study is work and asking questions. a. Who is speaking. b. To whom are they speaking. c. What is the subject under consideration. d. What is the time period under consideration.


We are responsible to find the Will of God for our life and it is revealed in the Book of life. Some want a buffet where they can pick and choose what they want to believe and practice. It is a pick and choose system that is not contained in God’s Word. That being the situation, the LORD is not our shepherd unless it agrees with our thinking or desire.


2.Heb 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.


I know some that say they are Christians and do not the things the father says. You cannot be a Christian and not go to His assembly. We have a clear command to assemble and worship the LORD. The Church is the bride of Christ. To shun his bride is to dishonor the very one whom we call the shepherd. What do you think that Jesus says about those that shun His bride. Do not be fooled, God will not be mocked. Shunning the bride of Christ is shaming the Savior. Do claim to be a sheep following the shepherd if you shun the Bride.



3. Eph_2:3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.

Eph_4:22 That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;

Php_1:27 Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;

Php_3:20 For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:


You cannot go out and drink, curse and carouse with the world and say we are a sheep following the shepherd. This is the height of hypocrisy. The word “conversation” is an old English word that means living or life style. If, by the Holy Spirit working within us, we cannot tear ourselves from following the fleshly, wicked worldly ways, we are not sheep following the Shepherd. We certainly are not Christians.


James Candler


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Integrally attached to the OT offerings was the altar, the raised structure on which blood was sprinkled and the fat of animals was burned. The Hebrew mizbēach (H4196) is derived from zāḇach (H2076), the word for sacrifice. Mizbēach appears about 400 times, about half of which are in the Pentateuch.
Early altars were made of earth and stone (Exo_20:25), but God later commanded the people to build altars of better materials, such as wood and metal (Exo_27:1-8; Exo_30:1-10). This impressed upon the people that they must worship in God’s prescribed way and that such worship demanded quality. It’s noteworthy that mizbēach is also used to refer to pagan altars, which must be torn down and destroyed (Exo_34:13).
One of the most vivid examples of an altar is the one on which Abraham placed his only son Isaac in readiness to sacrifice him according to God’s command. (Isaac’s place was taken by the ram that God provided [Gen_22:1-19]). Here is, of course, the clearest OT picture of the future substitutionary death of the Lord Jesus Christ (Mat_20:28; Joh_1:29; 2Co_5:21).
So is there an altar today? Not in the strict sense, for the “final altar” was the cross (Heb_13:10-13). Our sin was laid there and paid for once by Christ (Heb_10:10). First, we don’t lay ourselves on an altar for salvation, for Christ was the Lamb on that final altar.
Second, neither must we daily place ourselves on some supposed altar for sanctification, that is, “crucify ourselves daily” for holiness, as some misinterpret Rom_6:6 : “Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.” In fact, every verb tense in Romans 6 that refers to our identification with Christ in His death refers to that identification as having been completed in the past. Our “old man,” therefore, “[was] crucified with [Christ]” so that now “we should not serve sin.” That is sanctification. We can now live holy because Christ died on that final altar.
Scriptures for Study: Read Romans 6 and rejoice that you have been freed from the bondage, the control, of sin.


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He Accepted the Reproach of Christ
1818 – The legislature of New Brunswick, Canada passed an act stating that no avowed preacher of the gospel should have a seat in the legislature.  A Baptist evangelist, Joseph Crandall, who was well known throughout the Maritime Provinces, was a member of the New Brunswick legislature.  It was made clear to him that if he was in the pulpit the next Sunday that he would be dismissed from his legislative seat early in the week.  The next Sunday found him behind the sacred desk, as he had chosen to forsake the legislative desk.  His ministry and influence for Christ increased.  He had chosen the reproach of Christ of greater value than the riches and fame of this world.  Crandall’s mother died when he was only thirteen, and not long after his father followed her in death.  Before departing his mother said, “Joseph, the Lord has a great work for you to do when I am gone.”  These words so impressed him that they never left him.  In New Brunswick he came under the influence of two great preachers, Harris Harding and Joseph Dimock, and Joseph saw himself condemned to endless mercy and saw the mercy of God as the only sure remedy through the Lord Jesus Christ.  They saw in Joseph great potential and helped him get an education which eventually saw him ministering to multitudes and saw great numbers baptized.  He stood against the doctrine of “vested rights” and in the right of the “selected few” to govern the many.  To dissent from the church/state notions of the day was, in the judgment of some, treason against the laws of the land.  Crandall stood as the bold and uncompromising advocate of equal rights.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon, from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson /, pp. 100.
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