Tuesday, July 20, 2010

A Very Bright Constellation

A selection from a letter by Thomas Chalmers, Scottish Presbyterian preacher and professor, to J. E. Ryland of Northampton, England. Ryland's grandfather and father were luminaries in the Baptist constellation of great preachers in the later part of the 18th Century and the first part of the 19th Century. Dr. Chalmers shows his appreciation for the Baptist of that era. Ryland had written to Chalmers about the death of the well-known English essayist of Baptist persuasion, John Foster. Chalmer's letter was written from Edinburgh, November 17, 1842.

I ever had the greatest veneration both for him [John Foster] and Mr. [Robert] Hall, who along with Dr. [John] Ryland [Jr.], Andrew Fuller, Drs. [William] Carey, [Joshua] Marshman, and [William] Ward, made up altogether a very bright constellation, and which serves to signalize the Baptists of England more than any other denomination which I at present recollect.

Letters of Thomas Chalmers, edited by William Hanna, first published 1853, reprinted by The Banner of Truth, 2007, p. 322.

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