Thursday, July 18, 2013

Morrell sounds warning bell

Z. N. Morrell* (1803—1883) was one of the early Baptist preachers in Texas. He came from Tennessee to Texas in 1835 at the age of 32. An excerpt from a memorial sermon by M. V. Smith portrays what our Texas Baptist forebears believed.
"He (Morrell) condemned surface work in the revival meeting, deplored laxiness in receiving members, and insisted on purging our churches, as far as possible, of unregenerate material. He believed that if the heart was changed, an applicant for membership could, in some way, make it known; and he was opposed to the increasing practice of asking leading questions of applicants for baptism. He said, ‘If they know anything of conviction for sin, penitence, faith in Christ, and the joys of salvation, they can tell it.’" 
From Flowers and Fruits, as quoted in The Baptist Waymark, August 1986, Vol. 1 No. 3, p. 3

* Morrell was born on January 17, 1803, in South Carolina and died in Kyle, Texas on December 19, 1883. His given names are in dispute, variously called Zachariah, Zacharius, and Zenos, with some claiming the name Nehemiah for his middle name.

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