October 8

In 1668, Benjamin Keach became the pastor of the Baptist Church in Horsleydown, London. First meeting in homes, in 1672 they built their first building. Eventually, they had a meeting house which seated over a thousand.

Before becoming that famous pastor, Benjamin Keach was an infamous trouble-maker. On this day in 1664, in Aylesbury, he was summoned to appear before the Chief Justice. Following his trial he was convicted of heresy and sentenced to a fortnight in the gaol. Following that he was to be taken to several sites, where he was to be pilloried with a bag over his head bearing the inscription, “For writing, printing and publishing a schismatical book.” He was fined and exhorted to renounce his heretical doctrines. To which Keach replied, “I hope I shall never renounce the truths which I have written in that book.” For which of his forty-three books was Keach arrested? “The Child’s Instructor; or A New and Easy Primmer.”

The charge against Bro. Keach read: “Thou art here indicted …. for that thou being a seditious, schismatic person, evilly and maliciously disposed and disaffect to his Majesty’s government, and the government of the Church of England, didst maliciously and wickedly…. write, print and publish….. one seditious and venomous book…. wherein are contained, by way of question an answer… damnable positions… that is to say, in one place you have thus written: Q. Who are the right subjects for baptism? A. Believers, or godly men and women, who make profession of their faith and repentance.”