Earnest Study of Gods’ Word Will Make You Baptist
King charles the Second was proclaimed King of England on May 8, 1660. He was known as the “Merry Monarch,” and some religious toleration dotted the political horizon during his rule in which several interesting Baptists came to the fore. Mr. John Gosnold had been a minister of the established church, and during the civil unrest, he made the Scriptures the center of his thinking. Following earnest study he converted to Baptist convictions, and was chosen pastor of a Baptist congregation at the Barbican in London. His preaching was very popular, and he drew vistors from every denomination. His audience was usually composed of three thousand.
Carolus Maria DuVeil, a man who had been born into a Jewish home in Mentz, France. He was educated in Judaism, but as he began comparing the prophetical books of the Old Testament with the New, he was convinced in his heart that Jesus was indeed the promised Messiah! When he embraced Christianity, his father was incensed, and attempted to kill Carolus with a sword. Carolus became quite well known and the bishop of London sought his friendship which procured the use of the bishop’s library. There he discovered writings of the english Baptists, and being an honest inquirer, he discovered that the Biblical hermeneutics of the Baptists caused him to realize that they were in agreement with the Word of God. At that time Carolus sought an interview with reverend Gosnold. In the course of time Carolus was immersed by the Baptist pastor, and became a member of the Baptist church.
Dr. Dale R. Hart, adapted from: This Day in Baptist History III (David L. Cummins) p.p. 266 – 268
Massachusetts, passed a law against the Anabaptists
November 13, 1644 – The General Court in Massachusetts, passed a law against the Anabaptists that backfired against them with the general citizenry. In the body of the law, the Anabaptists were called among other things, “…incendiaries of commonwealths, and the infectors of persons in main matters of religion, and the troublers of churches…and they have held the baptizing of infants unlawful…some have denied the ordinance of magistracy, and the lawfulness of making war, every such person or persons shall be sentenced to banishment.” However, pressures mounted on the General Court so that, though they would not repeal the law, they publicly confessed that the Baptists were ‘peaceable’ citizens amongst them.” There is a difference in the Baptist position of religious liberty based on freedom of conscience and the religious toleration allowed by some “state churches.” Baptists believe that a free church in a free state is a New Testament principle…The right of every soul to direct access to God is an inalienable right, with which the state must not interfere.” State churches have arrived at the position of allowing other churches to exist, but favorable laws and/or fiscal levies are often to be granted the favored church. This is thought by some to be “toleration,” but Baptists believe that the end of governmental administration is equal justice under law. Baptists, therefore repudiate every form of compulsion in religion or restraint of religious freedom. In 1644, a poor man, Thomas Painter, was tied up and whipped because he refused to have his child baptized. This is what led Thomas Painter to become an Anabaptist.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins/ Thompson/ , pp. 472-73.