The Holy Spirit began troubling their spirit for world missions
The Northhamptonshire Baptist Association in England was formally incorporated on October 02, 1792, and the first subscription, made on the spot, amounted to E13. 2s. 6d. This sum, though small, was comparatively large; for it was the contribution of a few poor but enlightened servants of Jesus Christ. Our forefathers were forced for years to worship in clandestine assemblies for fear of persecution. As a result, believers had long forgotten the Great Commission of our Lord. To be sure there was personal witnessing, but it was nearly impossible to carry the gospel into other nations.
As Baptists gained religious freedom the Holy Spirit began troubling their spirit for world missions. One group was the Association mentioned above. “At the meeting in Nottingham in 1784, it was resolved to set apart an hour on the first Monday evening of every month, ‘for extraordinary prayer for the revival of religion, and for the extending of Christ’s kingdom in the world.’ The suggestion proceeded from the venerable (John) Sutcliff”
From 1787 to 1790, William Carey presented the importance of missionary effort. Few were found who sympathized with him. Once in fact John Ryland censured Carey for suggesting a title for a younger minister to bring regarding a missions subject. But Thomas Potts had it published into a tract. At the May meeting Carey preached from Isa. 54:2-3. Expect Great things from God; Attempt great things for God.
The pastors were greatly moved which resulted in the organization of the missions organization and the launching of the modern day missionary movement. Carey himself was the first missionary to leave out for India.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon: From: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 408-10.
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Author: William Andrew Dillard
Parson to Person
A new movie currently in theaters bears a title of a theme movement some decades ago: “GOD IS NOT DEAD!” These four words are indeed absolute truth. Still, questions plague nominal Christians about a perceived lack of His appearance in human affairs which gives rise to the question. Men look retrospectively, longing to see another Pentecost; another national revival; another sense of closeness to God as was evidenced a couple of centuries ago. Questions pound concerned minds: Is the Holy Spirit dead? Does God not care anymore? Is His power diminished?
This writer boldly affirms the negative to each one. God still reveals Himself to penitent hearts. Herein is the problem: God has not changed, but man has. God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, Heb. 13:8. Man, on the other hand insists on remaking God to suit himself. In self-willed worship, many have removed themselves from the immediate presence and working of the Holy Spirit, and in some cases have been turned over to a reprobate mind to meet the just reward of their obstinate determinations, Rom. 1:28.
Re-visit the story of Lazarus and the rich man in Luke 16. The man in hell was concerned about his brothers, five of whom were walking the same road of life he walked. He knew they were coming to hell, and God knew it. The tormented man’s plea for one to return from the dead to warn them was rejected. Why? The answer: they had (the writings of) Moses and the prophets; they were to hear them! God is not an arbitrary God!
Men today have the completed Word of God. There will be no additions to it or deletions from it. The Holy Spirit of God is intricately tied to it, accompanies its presentation, saves, and blesses those who properly respond to it. Men cannot worship God their way. He will be worshipped in spirit and in truth or not at all. Religious activity does not impress Him! Revisit Jesus’ words to the woman at the well in Sychar. John 4.
But what is that truth in which He must be worshipped? Pontus Pilate asked this millenniums ago, John 18:38: “What is truth?” Let it be forever settled that God is true! As such, He is the author of all that is true. David said, “Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever.” Psalm 119:160. No, the Holy Spirit’s power is neither dead nor diminished, but is ever ready and waiting to receive and bless those who come to God in a contrite heart, and worship Him in truth.
“Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know,” Acts 2:22.
Peter Learned To Stand
Have you ever had enough and finally had to stand up for the real truth? Peter found himself in this very situation.
The filling of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost came forty days after Christ’s ascension. The ability to speak a language other than one’s own happened as the result of the Holy Spirit blessing. In God’s plan, the gospel could be spread into multiple nations at one time during this gathering of nations. But someone always has to put a damper on the Lord’s work even when it is going great.
Soon the naysayers found fault with the preaching and began to accuse the speakers as being full of new wine or in other words intoxicated. Peter had had enough and he stood up and began to preach. The religious people of Jerusalem thought they had a monopoly on the gospel, but Peter quickly shattered that thought. He reminded them of a prophecy in Joel and preached to them concerning Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection.
Peter dared to preach the truth to a group of religiously nice but lost people and the Holy Spirit convicted their hearts. On that day about three thousand people believed the gospel and were baptized.
Our responsibility as believers is to speak the truth and let the Holy Spirit convict.