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202 – July 21 – This Day in Baptist History Past


 

Oh, that I had another life to go to Africa

 

Alfred Saker, as an old emaciated missionary stood before a united assembly of Baptists in Glasgow, Scotland in 1879 and said, “Oh, that I had another life to go out to Africa. The field is white, and the multitudes are in darkness still.” The Dark Continent’s best-known missionary, David Livingstone, wrote concerning him, “Take it all in all, specially having regard to its many sided character, the work of Alfred Saker at Cameroons and Victoria is, in my judgment, the most remarkable on the African Coast,” having served on the Western Africa coast for 37 years. He was born on July 21, 1814 in Kent, England. He was a thin, frail boy from a large family. Though he loved reading it was necessary for him to enter the work force with his father as a millwright and engineer which served him well in Africa years later. He was saved at 16 years old when he wandered into a gospel service in Sevenoaks. He was baptized in 1834 in his hometown. Upon his father’s death, he moved to Devonport and in 1839 married Miss Helen Jessup. They offered themselves to the Baptist Missionary Society for service in Africa. In a group of eight they landed in Feb. 1844. One by one the others were forced to leave but Alfred, frail though he was, seemed to have inexhaustible energy. Though he suffered from fever and other diseases he persisted in working with the tribes at the mouth of the Cameroon River. In 1849 a church was formed. The Spanish Govern. Insisted that the Baptists depart so he led his entire church to Amboises Bay where they began a new colony with homes and gardens, etc. He translated the Bible into Dualla in 1862. He passed into the Lord’s presence in March 1880. His life’s text was, “For thou art with me.”

 

Dr. Greg J. Dixon: adapted From: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/Thompson, pp. 298-300.

 

 

 

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24 – Jan. 24 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST


Rev. Larkin always exhibited a gracious spirit.
Clarence Larkin died on Jan. 24, 1924 at age 74.  He was born on Oct. 28, 1850 in Chester, PA.  He was converted to Christ at age 19 and became a member of the Episcopal church.  Knowing that his sins were forgiven, he desired immediately to preach but it was a few years before he left employment at a bank and entered college.   He had a methodical mind, and graduated as a mechanical engineer and later became a teacher of the blind.  As an engineer and a teacher of the blind, the Lord was preparing him for his life’s work of organizing the scriptures into visual charts on prophecy and doctrine that people were able to understand clearly the great truths of God’s Word.  At 32 he was immersed and united with a Baptist church.  Two years later he was ordained.  He became pastor of the Baptist church in Kennett Square, PA.  His second church was at Fox Chase, PA where he remained for twenty years.  At the time of his ordination Larkin was not a pre-millennialist, but as he studied the scriptures literally he was forced to come to that conclusion.  For years the postmillennialists had taught that the world was getting better and better, and that the church would convert the world and Christ would then return.  Rev. Larkin made huge wall charts describing his views on this subject and great numbers would come to hear him present these prophetic truths.  He reduced his teachings to Dispensational Truth (or God’s Plan in the Ages), which was his crowning work.  The Book of Daniel, The Spirit World, and The Second Coming.  Often it has been said that one can be dispensationally correct while being dispositionally mean spirited.  Those who knew him best reported that Rev. Larkin always exhibited a gracious spirit.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. IIII: Cummins, pp. 49-51.

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