Archive for December, 2010

Andrew Fuller on the use of money

December 29th, 2010 Posted in Uncategorized

In a letter that Andrew Fuller wrote to William Carey on September 16, 1795, he has a noteworthy remark about money. Rhetorically, he asks Carey:

“What shall we do with our money, but appropriate it to the service of our God?”

[Cited The Bengal Obituary (Calcutta: Holmes and Co./London and Calcutta: W. Thacker & Co., 1851), 338].

Beached whales and ministers of the gospel

December 21st, 2010 Posted in Uncategorized

Dr. Sean Michael Lucas has found a great statement in the Autobiography, Correspondence, etc. of Lyman Beecher, D.D., ed. Charles Beecher (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1864), I, 99—at the beginning of chapter 17—about the payment received by the first Puritan minister of East Hampton, Long Island. His annual support was to be ₤45 per annum (later raised to ₤50 and then ₤60 per annum), “lands rate free, grain to be first ground at the mill every Monday, and one fourth of the whales stranded on the beach” (italics added). As Dr. Lucas notes: this “is the only case I ever knew of a minister’s being paid in whales” [“Glad ministerial pay has advanced beyond this…”, reformation21, post December 20, 2010 (]. Can you imagine?

James’ successor was a Mr. Hunting, related to one of the Marian martyrs, and then came Samuel Buell (d.1798) (Autobiography, Correspondence, etc. of Lyman Beecher, 99-100), whose ordination sermon Jonathan Edwards preached in 1746, and under whose pulpit ministry Sarah Edwards had some remarkable experiences. I wonder if Buell was still being paid in beached whales during his pastorate. One could only imagine him and his mentor, America’s greatest theologian, when the latter visited him, going out to check the beach for stranded whales!

Call for Papers (and Schedule) for AFCBS Conference 2011

December 17th, 2010 Posted in Uncategorized

We are currently accepting paper proposals for next year’s conference (September 26-27, 2011). We have a limited number of spaces (only six this year) available for the parallel sessions.  These papers should be about 5,000 words in length and able to be delivered in approximately 30 minutes. Those interested in presenting need to e-mail the Center ( with a title and brief outline of their proposal as well as a brief resume before January 31, 2011.

The topic of papers for the parallel sessions must fall within the theme of the conference, namely, “Baptists and War.” The plenary session schedule is included below.  Parallel sessions may focus on biblical, theological, and/or historical approaches to the conference theme.  Submission of a proposal does not guarantee acceptance.  The presenters of papers accepted for the conference will be notified by the first of February, 2011.



Baptists and War

September 26–27, 2011

Monday, September 26

8:30am Plenary Session 1: Anthony Cross, (Regent’s Park College, Oxford University), “Anabaptists, Baptists, and Pacifism: An Overview”

10:00am Plenary Session 2: Larry Kreitzer (Regent’s Park College, Oxford University), “The ‘Valiant Old Lady’: The Story of the Eighth Whelp (1628–46) and her Baptist Chaplain John Pendarves”

11:30am Plenary Session 3: Keith Harper (SEBTS), “Baptists and the American Revolution”

1:00–3:00pm Banquet Lunch

3:00pm–4:30 pm Plenary Session 4: Paul Brewster (Pastor, SBC, & Junior Fellow of the Andrew Fuller Center), “Andrew Fuller and the War against Napoleon”

4:30–5:30 pm Parallel Sessions (six in total)

7:30pm–9:00pm Plenary Session 5 and panel discussion: George Rable (Univ. of Alabama), James Fuller (Univ. of Indianapolis), Tom Nettles (SBTS), and Greg Wills (SBTS, moderator), “Interpreting the American Civil War”

Tuesday, September 27

8:30am Plenary Session 6: Jamie Robertson (PhD student, McMaster University), “Baptists and the War of 1812”

10:00am SBTS Chapel

11:30 am Plenary Session 7: Gord Heath (McMaster Divinity College, McMaster University), “Canadian Baptists and the 19th century Wars of the British Empire”

2:00pm Plenary Session 8: Maurice Dowling (Irish Baptist College), “Russian Baptists and the Cold War”

3:30pm Plenary Session 9: Nathan Finn (SEBTS), “The Vietnam War and Baptist Witness”

Posted by Steve Weaver, Research and Administrative Assistant to the Director of the Andrew Fuller Center for Baptist Studies, Dr. Michael A.G. Haykin.

“Our heavenly society”: reflecting on a phrase from Richard Baxter

December 17th, 2010 Posted in Uncategorized

A commonality in late 17th and 18th century funeral sermons is the mention of the saints—often a few by name, usually the more famous figures of Protestant history with a few ‘local’ figures—with whom the deceased is now enjoying heaven. Richard Baxter captures the centrality of this thought in a remark he makes in a letter to Richard Sargeant on March 17, 1672:

“Oh, for a seeing faith to behold the glory of our Father’s presence, and our heavenly society” [cited N.H. Keeble, A Subject Index to the Calendar of the Correspondence of Richard Baxter with another Baxter letter (Dr. Williams’s Library Occasional Papers, no.13; London: Dr. Williams’s Trust, 1994), 19].

A “seeing faith” is the paradox of the Christian walk is it not? It speaks of the certainty and assurance that faith needs. The “glory of our Father’s presence”—Baxter would not wish to exclude the Son and the Spirit, for surely the Son is the glory of the Father and the Spirit their mutual love. But my focus here is “our heavenly society”: in addition to the glory of the Triune God, surely the next greatest joy in heaven are the redeemed saints. To revel in them, their joy and redemption: why, ‘tis glory!