H. Leon McBeth’s The Baptist Heritage is a definitive, fresh interpretation of Baptist history. Based on primary source research, the book combines the best features of chronological and topical history to bring alive the story of Baptists around the world.
The book is comprehensive in its coverage of Baptists. In these pages, readers encounter Baptists from England and the Commonwealth, the United States, Western and Eastern Europe, and other locales. Ample footnotes and a complete bibliography will assist serious students in further research. Scholarly issues are addressed carefully and completely. Individuals and movements are discussed and assessed within the broad social and religious contexts of their periods.
At the same time, the book is highly readable. While institutional developments are covered in detail, the author is equally concerned with biography. Both the familiar and the obscure figures of Baptist history become real to readers under McBeth’s skillful guidance.
The Baptist Heritage is a book for both scholars and students. Characterized by thoroughness and judicious interpretation, enlivened by gifted storytelling and clear writing, this book is destined to become the standard Baptist history of our time.
Save more when you purchase this volume as part of the B&H Baptist History Collection (11 Vols.)!
“In 1611 Helwys led his small group back to England where they established their church in Spitalfield, a section of London. Historians consider this the first Baptist church on English soil.” (Page 38)
“Though Particular Baptists started later and grew more slowly at first, modern Baptists draw more of their beliefs and practices from them.” (Pages 39–40)
“‘one of the grandees of the separation’ from the church of England.19 A capable theologian and writer, Smyth’s main claim to remembrance is that he founded the first identifiable Baptist church of modern times, in Holland, about 1609.” (Page 32)
“Thus was formed the church which would later give rise to the first Particular Baptists.” (Page 43)
“The most reliable historical evidence confirms that the Baptist denomination, as it is known today, originated in the early seventeenth century. This does not mean, however, that Baptist viewpoints did not exist before that time. Those who hold the Baptist faith believe their distinctive doctrines, such as salvation by grace through faith, a ‘gathered church,’ believer’s baptism, authority of Scripture, and religious liberty, reflect the doctrines of New Testament Christianity. The seventeenth-century Baptists did not invent these doctrines; they rediscovered and articulated them afresh for a new era.” (Page 61)