79 – March – 20 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST


He majored on the majors
 1806 – Samuel L. Straughan was ordained to the gospel ministry.  Born on a farm in Virginia in 1783 he became one of the great Baptist leaders of his time.  He received Christ as his savior at nineteen; and even as a child he had shown much interest in religion, even to the point that his father had called him, his little preacher.  He was baptized in April of 1803, and shortly after that he began to preach.  On the day that he was ordained he received a unanimous call from the Wicomico Baptist Church, a flock of around two dozen.  They soon increased to over three-hundred members.  The next year he was called to the Morattico Baptist Church and they also experienced rapid growth as he assumed the responsibility of both congregations.  In 1814 the Missionary Society appointed Straughan to travel into Maryland to preach the gospel, but before he accepted the call, the churches spent a day in fasting and prayer so as to know the mind of God in the matter.  He saw great success as he continued in his pastoral and evangelistic ministry at the same time.  Without the benefit of a formal education he committed great portions of the scripture to memory.  Sometimes he would quote as many as one-hundred passages in a sermon and often the audience would enjoy counting the verses as he preached.  He spoke extemporaneously in a rich sonorous voice, and majored on the atonement of Christ.  Straughan contracted a pulmonary disease that brought about his untimely death at only thirty-eight on June 9, 1821.  But in this short review, not to discount the importance of formal ministerial training, we need to see that there are things that are for more important that great leaders have exhibited, such as magnifying the Word of God and being filled with the Holy Ghost.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon, from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson /, pp. 113.
 
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