I mentioned the Northern Neck of Virginia last week. It was there that Addison Hall was born in 1779. Six years earlier so was Lewis Lunsford.
Lunsford was eventually saved by God’s grace and became a Baptist preacher. When the Lord began to bless, and Lunsford was causing quite a stir, an Episcopalian parson in Richmond County announced that on a specific Sunday he was going to expose the heresies of the Baptists. About 700 people began to assemble in the announced meeting place, and in the process the church balcony began to fall, causing a panic. Several people were injured and multitudes considered it to be the judgment of God.. After the disturbance was settled, the vicar went ahead and exposed the doctrines and practices of the Anabaptists, declaring that the day’s current Baptists were direct descendants of those earlier heretics. He got a mixed reception because there was a lot of truth in what he said.
Despite the persecution against them, Bro. Lunsford continued his public ministry. On the Lord’s Day, September 10, 1775, while preaching in Richmond County a constable came with a warrant to take him away. The man politely chose to let the preacher finish his message so as not to cause a disturbance, but the enemy was not satisfied and rocks where thrown against the house and a tumult was raised. At the conclusion of the message the constable refused to serve the warrant on such a good man, but another, with a trembling hand simply touched Lunsford with the paper – it was considered served. The preacher voluntarily appeared before the magistrate who declared that he must give security that he would not preach again in that county. When some friends came forward to pay the fine, Lunsford was released. Later in life, he said that in permitting himself not to be taken to jail gave him more uneasiness than anything else he ever did.