North Carolina Baptists Before 1830 17
Philadelphia Confession of Faith. Though in most of the churches the
great majority of the members were reluctant to accept the new
theology yet after a decade or two nearly all had entered into
fellowship with their former brethren on the new plan. But under the
influence of the rigid Calvinism which the newly converted preachers
ardently maintained, the wonderful evangelizing zeal which
characterized the General Baptists was lost and few new churches
were organized by the Particular Baptists in North Carolina.
In 1755 a third type of Baptists came to North Carolina. These were
the Separate Baptists, who with their leader, Shubal Stearns, came
from Boston and on November 22, 1755, settled at Sandy Creek in the
present county of Randolph. These differed from both the General
Baptists and the Particular Baptists in that they had no written
confession of faith and no theology except such as they could get
from the New Testament. Much more than either the General or the
Particular Baptists their preachers relied upon the power and influence
of the Holy Spirit. They were even greater evangelizers than the
General Baptists. Within seventeen years after their settlement on
Sandy Creek with irresistible evangelizing zeal they had preached the
Gospel from the ocean to the mountains and from the Potomac to the
Savannah. According to Morgan Edwards,1 "Sandy Creek church is
the mother of all the Separate Baptists. From Ibis Zion went forth the
word, and great was the company of them who published it; it, in
seventeen years, has spread branches westward as far as the great
river Mississippi; southward as far as Georgia; eastward to the sea and
Chesapeake Bay; and northward to the waters of the Potomac; it, in
seventeen years, is become mother, grandmother, and great-
grandmother to forty-two churches, from which sprang 125 ministers,
many of whom are ordained and support the sacred character as well
as any set of clergy in America."
1 Morgan Edwards, Materials Towards a History of the Baptists of North
Carolina. MS, N. C. Historical Review, VII, 384 f. 2
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