David Thomas was an early Baptist preacher who spent most of his ministry in Virginia, experiencing the hatred and persecution of the religious unbelievers in that area. Thomas endured their attacks willingly, having made the deliberate choice to move to Stafford County from Pennsylvania.
The Chappawamsic Baptist Church was founded through the ministry of Brother Thomas. From that congregation God called several other important early Baptist church planters, including William Fristoe. In the face of persecution, and yet because of God’s blessings, on this day in 1771, the Chappawamsic Church established the Potomack Baptist Church a few miles away.
The afore mentioned William Fristoe was preaching Christ one day when a gang of about forty men, led by Robert Ashby, entered the meeting house with the intention of disrupting the service and beating the preacher. When some of the brethren stopped them and threw Ashby out the door onto his face, a melee ensued, leaving several men on both sides bloodied and bruised. Soon after this incident Ashby, cut his knee. It became so badly infected that he was in danger of loosing his leg, but he refused treatment. When some Christians came to his house, trying to share Christ with sick the man, he stopped his ears and demanded their departure. A few days later he died a horribly painful death. So strongly did this impress his acquaintances that future attacks on Brother Fristoe and the churches in that county came to an end.