Nathan A. Finn

Historian, Theologian, Teacher, Preacher



January 2013



Andrew Fuller in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography

Written by , Posted in History, Links, Ministry, Missions, Theology

If you are looking for an excellent short introduction to the life and thought of Andrew Fuller, I recommend E.F. Clipsham’s entry on Fuller in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. For the moment, you can read the online version of that article at the ODNB website without a subscription. Among other topics, Clipsham writes about Fuller’s leadership in the Particular Baptist Missionary Society:

However 2 October 1792 saw the formation of the Baptist Missionary Society (BMS) with Fuller as its secretary. He gave himself unstintingly to the mission. While not a great administrator, his critical judgement, his firm grasp of missionary principles, and his ability to understand not only the missionaries but also the religious public enabled him to give the kind of leadership that the BMS needed in its early years. To Fuller his position was a sacred trust arising from a vow to William Carey to ‘hold the rope’, while he penetrated what was compared to a deep unexplored goldmine. Though supported by able men, the responsibility rested squarely on his shoulders.

You should read the entire entry, which is just over 1000 words. For those of you with access to a research library, you should also consider reading Clipsham’s four articles on “Andrew Fuller and Fullerism,” published in Baptist Quarterly in 1963–1964. Those articles represented some of the best scholarship on Fuller’s theology that were written prior to the renaissance in Fuller Studies since the the early 1980s.

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