ISAAC BACKUS AND THE AMERICAN PIETIST TRADITION by William G. McLaughlin

ISAAC BACKUS AND THE AMERICAN PIETIST TRADITION

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The subject of this biography became a leading Baptist preacher and evangelist in the last half of the eighteenth century. Connecticut born, of good family, converted during ""The Great Awakening,"" early identified with the ""separatists"" in his local congregation in Norwich, Connecticut, and later widely recognized for his integrity, wisdom and deep spiritual power, he played a significant part in the rise of the Baptist Movement. The cause of dis-establishment advanced by these ""separatists"" brought them under disfavor, and, at times, persecution, by the then established (Congregational) authorities. The eventual victory of the dis-establishment principle laid the ground for the Idea of separation of church and state still influential in American political and religious affairs. In all this, Backus exerted a large influence. He was, says the author, an ""almost perfect embodiment of the evangelical spirit of his time."" The book is substantially supported by research, yet readable and interesting. It should be welcomed by students of church history, and equally by these interested in the social history of this country during its formative period.

Pub Date: Aug. 31st, 1967
Publisher: Little, Brown