This Sunday in Baptist History
Tidence Lane was born the son of an ardent, Baptist-hating, Anglican in 1724. When the family moved from Maryland to North Carolina, Tidence came under the preaching of Shubal Stearns. In 1743, after the Lord saved his soul, the young man surrendered to preach the gospel. This must have been a blow to his religiously proud Father, but when another of the man’s sons, Dutton, was also converted, it was more than he could take, and he set off to find and kill his own son. But the Lord is gracious: not only was Dutton spared, but his Father, Richard, was eventually born again.
Tidence married Esther Bibber, and to the couple were born seven sons and two daughters. When he was overcome with a desire to start churches where Christ had yet to be preached, Tidence took his family into Tennessee. In 1779, he became the first pastor the first permanent church of any kind in Tennessee. Even though the region was, at the time, an unbroken wilderness, God began to bless, and by 1790 Tennessee had 18 churches, 21 preachers and 889 members. Tidence Lane ministered unto the Lord for over sixty years, dying on this day in 1806.