May 22

Joseph Ivimey was born on this day, 1773, in Ringwood, England. He was taught the trade of a tailor by his father, but he was taught little else, either secular or religious. While still in his youth he was sent to work for his uncle, and for the first time in his life he heard the gospel. He wanted more, so he would often walk nine miles with two friends to Wimbourne for that privilege, eventually being converted to Christ.
In 1794 Joseph moved to Portsea and became a member of the Baptist church of that city. There with the need of the gospel in area villages, he was encouraged to give his testimony and to preach, but contrary to the opinions of others, he didn’t think that he was very skilled. Proof of his ability came in the form of a call to the Baptist church at Eagle Street, London. Eventually he accepted and was ordained on January 16, 1805. He spent the rest of his life at Eagle Street, but his ministry was not confined to London. Not only did he encourage and help many young men to enter the ministry, he authored the four-volume “History of the English Baptists” which is considered by many as the finest of its kind.
Joseph Ivimey preached his last message on December 8, 1833 from the text “I know Whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day.” Soon afterward he prepared his will, demanding that two words be inscribed on his burial stone.
On a tombstone in the burial ground of the Nonconfomrists in London, which is called “Bunhill Fields,” one can find: “There lies interred the mortal remains of the Rev. Joseph Ivimey, in his lifetime the respected pastor the Baptist Church which met in Eagle Street, Red Lion Square, for upwards of 29 years. He departed this life on the 9th day of February, 1834, aged 60 years.” and following that in capital letters are the words “GRACE REIGNS.”