C. H. Spurgeon’s Convictions of Baptist Beginnings
On April 2nd 1861 a public meeting was held for the Baptist brethren of London at the famed “Metropolitan Tabernacle,” known to many as “Spurgeon’s Tabernacle,” where dedicatory services were extended as church members and London residents united in praising God for His blessings!
Consider the words of greeting from Spurgeon, as he welcomed the area Baptist brethren to the new building.
“We believe that the Baptists are the original Christians. We did not commence our existence at the reformation, we were reformers before Luther and Calvin were born; we never came from the Church of Rome, for we were never in it, but we have an unbroken line up to the apostles themselves. We have always existed from the very days of Christ, and our principles, sometimes veiled and forgotten, like a river which may travel underground for a little season, have always had honest and holy adherents. Persecuted alike by Romanists and Protestants of almost every sect, yet there has never existed a Government holding Baptist principles which persecuted others; nor, I believe, any body of Baptists ever held it to be right to put the consciences of others under the control of man. We have ever been ready to suffer, as our martyrologies will prove, but we are not ready to accept any help from the State, to prostitute the purity of the Bride of Christ to any alliance with Government, and we will never make the church, although the Queen, the despot over the consciences of men.
Dr. Dale R. Hart: Adapted from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins Thompson /, pp. 134-135.