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140 – May 20 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST

Booth, Abraham

A Champion of Regenerate Churches

Abraham Booth was born in Blackwell, Derbyshire, England, on May 20, 1734.  At the age of ten he was saved under the preaching of New Connection Baptists. At twenty-one he was baptized into a General Baptist Church. He was encouraged to preach and soon became pastor of a church at Kirby-Woodhouse. As a General Baptist, he was a bitter enemy of personal election and particular redemption. However, in the next few years his views began to change. When he was thirty-three, he published his ‘Reign of Grace’ a defense of the Calvinist position and evangelism, as he never lost his evangelistic fervor.  This writing was published a year before John Gill’s ‘Body of Divinity’.  While Gill refused to evangelize the lost, Booth called upon them to repent.  As a result of the printing of this work, he moved to London and was ordained pastor of the Prescott Street Particular Baptist Church of February 16, 1769.  He also published a book entitled ‘An Apology for Baptists.’ In this book Booth defended his denomination from the all too common accusation that the Baptists lay an undue stress on the ordinance of baptism. Booth also feared that if the Lord’s Supper were extended to the unbaptized, it would undoubtedly lead to the admission of the unbaptized to church membership and perhaps also to the admission of the unregenerate to church membership. This would undercut his concept that the church consists of visible saints.  After thirty-seven years as pastor of the Prescott Street Particular Baptist Church, Abraham Booth died in 1806 at the age of seventy-two.

Dr. Dale R. Hart from: “This Day in Baptist History III” David L. Cummins. pp. 291 – 293

 

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