In the cabin of Cornelius Drake, on Mayslick, on the 28th day of November, 1789, four persons - David Morris, Cornelius Drake, Ann Shotwell, and Lydia Drake, met "for the purpose of joining themselves to the Lord, and to one another, by the will of God, in a Church state." William Wood was the only minister present. With no dispensation from Conference, Assembly, or mitred Bishop, the little company sought the blessing of Him whose presence is promised wherever two or three are met in His name. Looking alone to Him for guidance and strength, they subscribed the following:
"Solemn covenant of the first day Baptist Church, at Mayslick, Mason county, in the District of Kentucky, State of Virginia.
Desiring, together in the fear of God and through the assistance of the Holy Spirit, to give ourselves to Him, and to each other, according to the apostolic practice and constitution (2 Corinthians 6:16, 17), that He may be our God, and that we may be His people. We believe in a trinity of persons in the incomprehensible and adorable Godhead; holding the sovereign and eternal election of God's free grace; the effectual call annd final perseverance of the saints; the resurrection of the dead, and life everlasting; together with all the doctrines contained in the word of God; and that therein is contained the only rule for our faith and practice - we do solemnly join ourselves together in holy union."
Their covenant included their "meeting together on Lord's days, and at other times, for his worship;" and, "according to our abilities, to communicate to our pastor, or minister - God having ordained that they who preach the gospel, should live of the gospel."
The characteristics of this covenant, or confession, do honor to it framers. Most of the members had come from Scotch Plains, New Jersey, where Seventh Day Baptists were numerous. Hence the propriety of distinguishing themselves as "First Day Baptists." The announcement of their convictions was a creed; one which, in its main features, every Christian has, and will, willingly subscribe to. The recognition of the principle, that the "laborer is worthy of his hire," and the vote of the Church, granting a specified salary to its first pastor, is another of the thousand evidences that the early Churches of Kentucky have been more persecuted in regard to supporting their pastors.
William Wood was chosen pastor of the Church, and baptized the first converts; but was, soon afterwards, succeeded by Donald Holmes. ==========
[From Samuel H. Ford, The Christian Repository, September, 1856, p. 146. Scanned and formatted by Jim Duvall.]
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