The Fruit of Compromise
The name of Dr. Peter Bainbridge should have gone down in Kentucky Baptist history as one of the distinguished leaders. Peter was saved in his youth, and baptized by Reverend Joseph Reese on December 11, 1784. His training in theology was excellent, and he was ordained six years later on April 4, 1790, by Reverend Edmund Botsford. He was trained in theology and medicine, serving both as pastor and physician. With all these gifts, he married into wealth. Eleanor McIntosh was the only daughter of General Alexander McIntosh. Her father brought his wealth to America from Scotland and had been commissioned a General in the American Revolution. Eleanor was his heiress and had been reared in polished society. After their marriage Peter practiced medicine and preached in South Carolina, Maryland, New York, and finally in Kentucky. Though Peter doubtless loved the Lord and His Word, he did not hold firmly to standards of separation. For instance, believing that music and dancing, under prudent restraints, were not inconsistent with purity of heart, he allowed his daughter to attend dancing parties, and to dance. Peter was censured by the Elkhorn Association in Kentucky in 1798, but far worse than that, his daughters did not follow the Lord. As old age approached, on April 16, 1819, Peter wrote the following to one of his daughters: “My dear Ruthy, I want you to get religion – an interest in the blessed Jesus. Lord! How can I bear the thought of your being left behind? O, that God would enlighten your mind, and pour His pardoning love into your soul, that we may all, at last . . . meet in a better world, never to part again! May God give us pastors who are willing to be as narrow minded as God’s Word!
Dr. Dale R. Hart, adapted from: “This Day in Baptist History III” David L. Cummins. pp. 220 – 21.
[A] physician, pastor and missionary.
Rev. Ezekiel Skinner’s son Benjamin, was born on Jan. 07, 1803. After growing up with a heart for God and receiving training at the Hamilton Institute in Hamilton, NY, he and his wife applied for missionary service in Liberia. Within a year, he, his wife and son, had died of a tropical disease. His father, Rev. Skinner with his wife took their place, though nearing sixty years of age, and for three years, served in their place, before returning to the states. Even at that, they didn’t leave before a replacement was found. Only then did Dr. Skinner return to assume his pastoral duties until his retirement because of ill health. He lived with his son until his death on Christmas day 1855. Ezekiel Skinner was born in Glastenbury, CT on June 27, 1777, the son of Ezekiel and Mary Skinner. He was left orphaned by age ten when both parents had died. An uncle apprenticed him to a blacksmith but he purchased his last year of apprenticeship and went to medical school and became a physician. He became a deist and a champion of infidelity before his conversion through the Congregational church. Later because of conviction over immersion he became a Baptist, and the pastor of the Baptist church in Ashford, CT and was ordained in 1822. At the same time he pastored a church in Westford, CT. After he resigned from Ashford he remained at Westford for eight more years where he returned from his missionary years. What a full and eventful life Dr. Skinner had, as a physician, pastor and missionary.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. IIII: Cummins /, pp. 13-15.
He had no fear of excoriating politicians or religious leaders
December 30, 1835 – Zacharius N. Morrell (Z.N.) with a clear voice and a stronger body than he had known for years, preached his first sermon on Texas soil. He had just arrived with his physician and several other friends from Tennessee on a survey trip to see if his family could be safely taken to that Roman Catholic enclave. He determined that night, that he would bring his wife and four children to Texas and cast his lot with that turbulent empire. According to B.F. Riley, Morrell had the distinction of being the most, “daring, uncompromising and aggressive of the pioneer Baptist preachers of Texas.” J.M. Carroll said that he was responsible for, “having laid the right foundations of organized Baptist work in Texas.” Born in S.C. on Jan. 17, 1803, he received little formal education but was known for his courage and fiery temperament. He began preaching before he was 20 and served for 14 years in Tennessee. For a period of 9 years he averaged preaching a sermon per day even though he was hemorrhaging from his lung. The anti-missionary forces had made inroads into Texas but Morrell formed the first “missionary” Baptist church in the state at Washington on the Brazos with 8 members in 1837. As a champion of missions, temperance, Sunday schools, and education, he stamped his impression upon the early labors in his adopted state. He organized churches and associations. He had no fear of excoriating politicians or religious leaders when he felt that they were to be censured. He felt that the Bible was to be wielded as a sharp two-edged sword. He also countered the “Hard-Shells” and the “Campbellites” when they penetrated the state along with fighting the Indians.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins Thompson /, pp. 547-49.