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Baptist

Chapter 6

5 Nov 2015, by AHB Library

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“He that believeth shall not make haste.” (Isa. 28:19)

“Thy way, not mine, O Lord,
However dark it be;
O lead me by Thine own right hand
Choose Thou the path for me.

Smooth let it be, or rough
It will be still the best;
Winding or straight it matters not,
It leads me to Thy rest.

I dare not choose my lot,
I would not if I might:
But choose Thou for me, O my God.
So shall I walk aright.”

Our narrative brings us to the year 1852. A curious lull followed the closing of the Great Exhibition of 1851, which some had considered as the pioneer of the reign of anti-christ, and others as the harbinger of the millennium, but dreams of universal and unbroken peace were soon rudely interrupted by the fierce conflicts of contending politicians…

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Chapter 7

5 Nov 2015, by AHB Library

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“‘Tis not a cause of small import
The Pastor’s care demands.”—Doddridge.

“Preaching administ’ring in every work
Of his sublime vocation, in the walks
Of worldly intercourse ‘twixt man, and man,
And in his humble dwelling, he appears
A labourer with moral virtue girt,
With spiritual graces like a glory crowned.”
Wordsworth’s “Excursion.”

The settlement of a pastor over a Church is an important event in the history of religion. It is intimately connected with the glory of God, and the welfare of souls, and is to the individual himself, and to the people of his charge, the commencement of…

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Chapter 8

5 Nov 2015, by AHB Library

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“Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee.”—Proverbs 4:28

“There stands the messenger of truth! there stands
The legate of the skies! His theme divine,
His office sacred, his credentials clear.
By him the violated law speaks out
Its thunders; and by him, in strains as sweet
As angels use, the gospel whispers peace.”—Cowper

Chadwell-Street is in the heart of a densely populated district in the north of London, and was in 1858 one of the most advantageous positions for a dissenting chapel that could have been found in the whole of the metropolis. Many changes have occurred in recent years. Old Smithfield, which was then an institution, has disappeared. Clerkenwell was the home of…

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Chapter 9

5 Nov 2015, by AHB Library

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“We can do nothing against the truth but for the truth.”—2 Corinthians 13:6

“Should all the forms that men devise
Assault my faith with treach’rous art,
I’d call them vanity and lies,
And bind the Gospel to my heart.”

Attention is at this point claimed to a brief and cursory review of some of the more public religious events which transpired during the period to which this and the preceding chapter are devoted.

An accurate estimate of the character of a prominent Christian minister is impossible, unless we take into account the spiritual tendencies of his age, the currents of popular thought, the opinions which were then rising into…

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Chapter 10

5 Nov 2015, by AHB Library

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The Student—A Retrospect

“Give me a Bible in my hand,
A heart to read and understand,
This sure unerring Word.
I’d urge no company to stay,
But sit alone from day to day
In converse with my Lord.”
—Susannah Harrison, altered by David Denham.

“A SELF-MADE MAN.” Popular as is this phrase, we regard it with great disfavour, judging it to obscure His prerogative who governs all events in heaven and earth according to His sovereign pleasure, and to claim for a creature a power with which his all-wise Creator has not been pleased to invest him, “There’s a divinity that shapes our ends, rough hew them how we will.” “A man’s heart deviseth his way, but the Lord directeth his steps.” “There are many devices in a man’s heart; nevertheless, the…

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Chapter 11

5 Nov 2015, by AHB Library

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“Patient continuance in well-doing.”—Romans 2:7

The inevitable result of the Norwich Chapel case, was to widen the already existing breach between the Strict and Particular Baptists, and the rest of their denomination. By the latter the issue of the celebrated suit was almost universally regarded as a victory of charity and candour over narrowness and bigotry. Nearly all the public references to the men who had dared the desperate venture expressed the utmost exultation that they had been worsted in the unequal fight. Few appeared to regard their self-denying heroism with any other sentiment than pitying contempt. Men who had secretly desired to introduce a similar innovation in other quarters, but had hitherto lacked the courage of their convictions, now began to wax bolder; and many hazarded the prediction, that before many years had expired, the practice of strict communion would be unknown in the…

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Chapter 12

5 Nov 2015, by AHB Library

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“His character was marked by great caution and wisdom. Some deemed him too hesitating and slow. Still they generally found that at last he was right, and that the steps he had taken were safe. He was a prudent, and admitting our individual and characteristic infirmities, a truly wise man. He never involved himself in difficulty, or plunged into danger through his imprudence. He always thought much before he decided, and when he moved he felt that his ground was firm. He was cautious in abstaining from everything violent. He was no mere party-man; he never committed himself by any political demonstration, and studiously avoided the arena of warm and angry debate, of violent, of clamorous controversy, He strictly confined himself to his duties as a minister of the Gospel. and assiduously discharged them. He never, like many, stepped beyond his own province. He knew what he had to do, and did it. He was characterised by his sageness, which increasingly developed as he advanced in years.”—A Portraiture of William Jay.
By Rev. Thomas Wallace

This chapter will be devoted to a review of the last fifteen years of John Hazelton’s career, a period which was the least eventful, but in many respects the happiest and most useful of his life.

In 1873 many of our bravest standard-bearers had fallen, and not a few others had almost accomplished their warfare below. John Foreman and James Wells had fallen asleep; George Murrell had passed away after a long life of holy service: George Wright had finished his work, and was waiting for the open vision, while Philip Dickerson, William Palmer, and…

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Chapter 13

5 Nov 2015, by AHB Library

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ANALYTICAL.—THE PREACHER.

I would describe him simple, grave, sincere,
In doctrine uncorrupt; in language plain,
And plain in manner; decent, solemn, chaste,
And natural in gesture; much impressed
Himself, as conscious of his awful charge.
And anxious mainly that the flock he feeds
May feel it too; affectionate in look,
And tender in address, as well becomes
A messenger of grace to guilty men.—Cowper.

Nothing was further from the character of John Hazelton than the common ambition to figure as “an all-round man.”

He had thoughts on politics, and deemed it right for a Christian to vote according to his convictions, but he attended no meetings that were not distinctly religious or philanthropical, and he was always silent in public on the questions of the day. He was well read: but he never delivered lectures or wrote articles on social or literary subjects. He possessed many of the qualifications of a commentator, but he penned no expositions, nor were any critical or exegetical notes found…

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Chapter 14

5 Nov 2015, by AHB Library

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“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem; they shall prosper that love thee, peace be within thy walls, and prosperity within thy palaces. For my brethren and companions’ sakes, I will now say, peace be within thee, because of the house of the Lord our God, I will seek thy good.”—Psalm 122:6-9

John Hazelton was as remote from the spurious catholicity which acknowledges and receives all professed Christians without inquiry into their faith and practice, as he was free from the bitter sectarianism which cannot acknowledge the existence of spiritual good without the pale
of its own communion.

He nevertheless at all times manifested a denominational spirit. He loved his own section of the Church with profound affection, identified himself with it with unconcealed satisfaction, rejoiced in its prosperity, and sought its good in every possible way.

He frequently rendered important service by his valuable Addresses at Recognition Services. The following is a sketch…

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How fine has the day been!
How bright was the sun!
How lovely and joyous the course that he run!
Though he rose in a mist when his race he begun,
And there followed some droppings of rain:
But now the fair traveller conies to the west,
His rays are all gold, and his beauties are best;
He paints the sky gay, as he sinks to his rest,
And foretells a bright rising again.

Just such is the Christian. His course he begins
Like the sun in a mist, while he mourns for his sins,
And melts into tears; then ho breaks out and shines,
And travels his heavenly way:
But when he comes nearer to finish his race,
Like a fine setting sun, he looks richer in grace,
And gives a sure hope at the end of his days.
Of rising in brighter array.

“Jesus can make a dying bed
As soft as downy pillows are.”

“To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven…a time to be born, and a time to die.” The sovereign Ruler of the skies allots to all men the duration of their sojourn here; and at His bidding the dust returns to the…

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Copyright © 2011, The Association of Historic Baptists