20/07/2017

Boswell Beddome

Beddome, Boswell (1763-1816) was the son of the Baptist minister and hymnwriter, Benjamin Beddome (1717-95) of Bourton-on-the-Water, one time suitor of Mary Steele’s aunt, Anne Steele. In 1797, Boswell joined the Baptist congregation at Maze Pond in Southwark, London; unfortunately, his wife, the former Anne Wilkins (sister of William Wilkins, who had asked for Mary Steele’s hand in marriage in 1777), died shortly thereafter at the age of thirty-three, leaving him with several young children. He remarried in January 1800 to Anne Parsons and that July was elected a deacon at Maze Pond, along with Joseph Wickenden, both men being friends of Benjamin Flower, radical newspaper/magazine editor at Cambridge and later at Harlow. Beddome was active in Baptist affairs, serving as a deputy to the Protestant Dissenter’s Fund in 1803. His business partner was Mr. Fysh (also a member at Maze Pond) in Fenchurch Street, London (see letter 82). Robert Hall had been intimate with the Boswell family for many years. Beddome’s father partially supported Hall during the early years of the latter’s ministry with the interest from a £600 legacy (MS., Angus Library, Regent’s Park College, Oxford, shelfmark 41.3.4[t.]). Hall and Boswell Beddome maintained a close friendship throughout their lives. Writing to Olinthus Gregory on 2 November 1816, three days after Beddome’s death, Hall laments, Alas! my dear friend Boswell Beddome—my eyes will see thee no more! The place which once knew thee will know thee no more! How many delightful hours have I spent in thy society, hours never more to return! That countenance beaming with benevolence & friendship will be beheld no more until the Resurrection morn, when it will rise to view radiant with immortal brightness and beauty. (MS., Bristol Baptist College Library, acc. no. OSG.95B, box A) See Maze Pond 2.f.213, 221; CI 15 July 1797, 25 January 1800.

Samuel Favell, etc

These two entries are from Dissenting Studies 1700-1850
Favell, Samuel (1760-1830) – A prominent Baptist layman, he lived for his early London years in Tooley Street, Southwark, where he married Sarah Bardwell in 1786. She died in 1795 and his second wife was Elizabeth Beddome (1765-1830), only daughter of Benjamin Beddome, Baptist minister at Bourton-on-the-Water. He partnered most likely with her brother, Boswell Brandon Beddome (he was a close friend of Benjamin Flower) as woollen drapers (Beddome, Fysh and Co., 170 Fenchurch Street) and operated a second partnership as a slopseller (Favell & Bousfield, 12 St Mary-Axe). By 1817 his business was listed as Favell, Beddome, and David.
He was present at the initial meeting of the Sunday School Society in 1785, and served as a leading member of the London Revolution Society from 1788 to its demise in 1792, as well as Society for Constitutional Information; he was the object of a satirical piece in the London Times on 22 June 1792 titled “The Southwark Slop-Seller,” signed “Sammy Slop,” a name revisited again by the Times on 4 December 1792, described as still living in Tooley Street. Favell himself would later write of these attacks (more occurred that December) on his politics and character in a letter that appeared in the Times on 25 June 1827.
He represented the Court of Common Council from 1809 through 1829. He was, like his fellow Baptists Henry Waymouth, Benjamin Shaw, Joseph Hughes, Samuel Medley, Jr., and F. A. Cox, involved in the founding of the London University, serving as a member of the first Provisional Committee formed in July 1825. He moved to Camberwell from Tooley Street c. 1794, and later was an active member of the Camberwell Bible Association. At a meeting of 8 November 1813, he was joined by Samuel Palmer (1775-1847), father of the Romantic painter Samuel Palmer (1805-81), the latter becoming a friend of Crabb Robinson and William Blake in the 1820s (see Minutes of the Camberwell Bible Association, 1813-22, MS. John Gill Papers, William B. Hamilton Collection, David M. Rubinstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Duke University). Most likely he attended the Baptist meeting in Camberwell during the ministry of Edward Steane.
Fysh, Mary – who joined Maze Pond on 2 December 1796, coming from the Baptist congregation at Cirencester. Her husband was Boswell Beddome’s business partner in Fenchurch Street, London (see letter 12). She died on 7 March 1804 (Maze Pond 2.ff.18, 155, 255). Mrs Fysh was also a friend of Robert Hall and may have had connections with the Baptist congregation at St Andrew’s Street (Gregory, Works 5.415-16). A notice in the Intelligencer on 28 November 1801 informed the public that a “Mrs. Fysh, daughter of Mr. Christopher Fysh of Lyon, died on Thursday sennight at her brother’s house in Camberwell,” most likely the same house in which Eliza breakfasted with Mary Fysh.

22/05/2017

Useful learning - new book

A new book has just been published under the title Useful Learning: Neglected Means of Grace in the Reception of the Evangelical Revival among English Particular Baptists. he book is by Anthony R Cross and has a foreword by Ian Randall.
It contains a section on Benjamin Beddome. The blurb says
Explorations of the English Baptist reception of the Evangelical Revival often - and rightfully - focus on the work of the Spirit, prayer, Bible study, preaching, and mission, while other key means are often overlooked. Useful Learning examines the period from c. 1689 to c. 1825, and combines history in the form of the stories of Baptist pastors, their churches, and various societies, and theology as found in sermons, pamphlets, personal confessions of faith, constitutions, covenants, and theological treatises. In the process, it identifies four equally important means of grace.
The first was the theological renewal that saw moderate Calvinism answer "The Modern Question" develop into evangelical Calvinism, and revive the denomination.
Second were close groups of ministers whose friendship, mutual support, and close theological collaboration culminated in the formation of the Baptist Missionary Society, and local itinerant mission work across much of Britain.
Third was their commitment to reviving stagnating Associations, or founding new ones, convinced of the vital importance of the corporate Christian life and witness for the support and strengthening of the local churches, and furthering the spread of the gospel to all people.
Finally was the conviction of the churches and their pastors that those with gifts for preaching and ministry should be theologically educated. At first local ministers taught students in their homes, and then at the Bristol Academy. In the early nineteenth century, a further three Baptist academies were founded at Horton, Abergavenny, and Stepney, and these were soon followed by colleges in America, India, and Jamaica.
Cross is Emeritus Director of the Centre for Baptist History and Heritage and a Research Fellow at Regent’s Park College

06/05/2017

A strange day in Maze Pond

I do not think I have noted this anywhere else. I had to read it several times to get it clear in my mind.  The point is that Ivimey describes how one Sunday in about 1739 after Beddome finished preaching 
"a deacon who was unfriendly to Mr. [Benjamin] Wallin's being brought into the pastoral office, without having even consulted his brethren in office or the church, stopped the members after the sermon, and proposed Mr. Beddome as a suitable person for the pastoral office; this however turned out to the mortification of this Diotrephes; for no one seconding the motion, the matter dropped of course." What a strange experience for young Beddome (then about 22) to have gone through.
(I discover I had recorded this back in 2011).

The heavenly calling

In a sermon on the heavenly calling from Revelation 17:14 Beddome closes thus
1. It is personal and particular. The general call is to all that come under the sound of the gospel: this singles out the very person, and speaks to him, as it were, by name, —" Zaccheus, come down;" "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?" The former is drawing the bow at a venture; the latter directs the arrow to the mark. The one is directed to the ear, the other to the heart. Ministers stand at the door and knock; the Spirit comes with his key, and opens the door. "I have called thee by name - thou art mine."
2. It is a secret call; it is perceptible in its effects, but not in itself. This is beautifully illustrated by that saying of our Saviour, "The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, nor whither it goeth; so is every one that is born of the Spirit." Saul's companions heard a sound of words, but knew not what was spoken. The outward walk, the moral and religious conduct of the saint, are conspicuous to all; but the principles from which he acts, and the motives by which he is influenced, are known only to God and his own soul; in which sense the apostle might say, "As unknown, and yet well known." How different this call from that in the last day, when the angel commissioned for that purpose will say, in the hearing of all the world, "Arise, ye dead, and come to judgement!" 
3. It is always successful. Many other calls are not so, even where God himself is the speaker; for he "speaketh once, yea, twice, but man regardeth it not." But when he speaks with a design that we should hear and obey, that design is never frustrated. All the power, policy, and malice of earth and hell, cannot obstruct the operations of his grace, which, as they are sovereign and free, so they are irresistible; so that the enlightened sinner may say, with Job, "Call thou, and I will answer:" and as this call admits of no resistance, so it admits of no delay. "Immediately," says the apostle, "I conferred not with flesh and blood." He speaks, and it is done; .he commands, and it stands fast.
4. As it is effectual, so it is irrevocable. As the gifts, so the calling, of God is without repentance. God never repents that he has been the author of the change effected by his calling, nor the sinner, that he has been the subject of it. God is said to repent that he gave man a being, but never that he gave him grace. The exertion of his power towards his people is so far from creating any regret, either in him or them, that they both rejoice. There is joy both in the repenting sinner, and in heaven over him; and it is not likely that that should be revoked which gives such universal satisfaction. As it is happy for the sinner that his state is alterable, it is equally so for the saint that his is not so. A child of the devil may become a child of God; but a child of God shall never become a child of the devil again. The divine principle shall never be lost; but it shall, in the believer, be "a well of water, springing up to everlasting life." It came from heaven, and it will never leave the soul till it is brought thither.
Let us apply this subject, by inquiring whether we have been thus called. This is the great thing necessary to internal sanctification and all real religion. Here God's work upon us begins, and here begins our working for God. Let us then sit down to examine this matter; much, nay, all, depends upon it. No grace, no glory; - if we are not called, we shall not be crowned. Well might the apostle give that advice: "Give all diligence to make your calling and election sure." We can only know that our names are written in heaven by God's law being written in our hearts.
Let the saints especially, who are God's called ones, learn,
1 To be humble. Whatever they do for Christ is the fruit of what he has done for and in them; they have no reason to be puffed up with their best performances, for they have nothing but what they have received. The evil that is in them is from themselves, the good from God.
2 To be thankful. "I will bless the Lord," saith David, "who hath given me counsel;" those that are the subjects of God's grace should be the trumpeters of his praise. [ocr errors]
3 To be fruitful. Let not the grace bestowed upon you be received in vain; not only bring forth fruit, but show forth the high praises of Him that called you out of darkness into his marvellous light. Walk worthy of your vocation, my friends, and "as He that hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation."

05/05/2017

Deacon William Collett 1743-1820

William Collett (1743-1820) the son of William and Elizabeth was born at Bourton on the Water on March 28, 1743. The birth was recorded by the Baptist Church. When Collett was 25 he was baptised in Upper Slaughter in June, 1768. Six years before, William had married Anne Matthews on May 12, 1762 at Upper Slaughter. Anne or Anna was also later referred to as Hannah.
In 1767 the couple’s third child twas born and shortly after she was expecting her fourth. The Upper Slaughter baptism register apparently confirmed William to be the husband of Anne. He was baptised on the same day as his much younger brother, Henry, probably on the same day
All of William and Anne’s children were born and later baptised at Upper Slaughter where, on October 27, 1772, it is established that blacksmith William Collett of Upper Slaughter took on land, the blacksmith’s shop and Pool’s Close, all as part of a 99-year lease. The owner of the property, from whom it was leased, was Mary Tracy the widow of Thomas Tracy. The lease also made reference to his sons William Collett and Joseph Collett.
By 1789 Collett had become a deacon.
William Collett died in 1820, aged 78, and was buried on December 10, 1820 at Bourton-on-the-Water, as recorded in the Baptist Church records. The Will of William Collett was made on October 1, 1801 and signed in his own hand. Within the short document there is no mention of his wife who therefore must have passed away between the birth of the couple’s last child and that time. William appointed three of his children (Thomas, Richard and Sarah) as executors of his estate. However, following his death it was only his daughter Sarah who was sworn in at the proving of the Will, which took place on June 5, 1822.

Clerk Jasper Bailey c 1740-1782

Jasper Bailey (c 1740-1782) was a wool stapler in Bourton, that is a person who buys wool from a producer, grades it, and sells it to a manufacturer. He was also the clerk or precentor in the Baptist church for many years. In 1768 he married Mary Paxford (1746-1788), Mary was the daughter of Andrew Paxford and Sarah Collett Paxford. Her siblings were Sarah (married to John Collett) and the twins John and Ann (married to James Beale). Their children were Ann, Esther, Thomas, William (1771-1844), Elizabeth, Benjamin, Sarah. We know that in 1765 their maid died.
Bailey's early death must have meant tough times for his widow and her many children one of whom, William, became a pastor in Datchet, Oxfordshire. He wrote in a letter of the religious education his mother gave him, "owing to which," he observes "I was kept, by the grace of God, from many snares and temptations to which others have been a sacrifice." He served an apprenticeship with a grocer and draper at Bedworth, Warwickshire, before removing to a situation at Gosport, Hampshire, where he came under the ministry of David Bogue (1750-1825). It was through Bogue that he was saved, although hardly even aware of it at the time.
From Gosport he moved to Henley and then to London, where he was baptised by William Smith (1749-1821) of Eagle Street, on October 9, 1796, then aged 25.
He did not join the church at this time and there is a gap in his history until 1811 when "moved by a weakly state of health and a growing sense of the importance of eternal things, he began to record many of the exercises of his soul, and keep a strict watch over his heart." He records
seven years of domestic happiness and a prosperous run of business, thankfully but expresses much concern lest these should lead him astray.
At this time he belonged to the Independent church in Windsor but was increasingly unhappy about not being in a Baptist church. He eventually resigned while still maintaining a friendship with the church and its pastor, Alexander Redford (1759-1840). He then joined the Baptist church in Datchet under John Young from Staines, soon becoming a deacon. He began to preach from time to time and in 1815, when Young stepped down because of illness, he became the regular preacher, being ordained in 1819. Although not blessed with great success he was enabled to sustain the work.
In 1832 he wrote the Association letter. Ill health only interrupted his ministry seriously late in 1843,. The church was able to install his successor (John Tester) before Bailey's death, which came on June 30, 1844.