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To Contest with All the Powers of Darkness

New England Baptists, Religious Liberty, and New Political Landscapes, 1740-1833
  • By Jacob E. Hicks
Product Description
In this new history of the New England Baptists, Jacob E. Hicks teases out the social and political contexts that transformed "rustic" young men like John Leland not only into volunteers for Christ--as wide-roving preachers in the mold of George Whitefield--but also into influential opinion leaders, media entrepreneurs, networkers, and lobbyists in the contentious First Party era of the Early Republic.

Baptist leaders like Isaac Backus, Noah Alden, Samuel Stillman, John Leland, Jonathan Going, and Luther Rice exploited their church-based ministerial training in public speaking, conflict resolution, and intra-denominational networking to become political organizers. With significant gains in the formation of the Warren Association (1767), the Backus-led Grievance Committee (1769), and Leland's formative experience in the campaign to disestablish Virginia (1780s), the Baptists allied themselves with the rising Democratic-Republican Party, touching off a coalition of anti-Federalist politics and evangelical religion that, while not directly disestablishing Massachusetts, would bear significant fruit in the Religious Freedom Act of 1811.

To Contest with All the Powers of Darkness brings a unique movement into focus that had at its inception the communal values and ministry preparation practices of a loose network of New England Baptist churches. This movement drove a significant first wedge in the church-state fusion of the Early Republic and, simultaneously, left memorable lessons in successful collective action for a New England Baptist community on the verge of an institutional explosion on the western frontier.

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    Product Specs
    • SKU: 9781621908289
    • Manufacturer: Univ Of Tennessee Pr
    • ISBN 13: 9781621908289
    • Publication Date: 06/28/2024
    • Format: Hardcover
    • Author: Jacob E. Hicks

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