Our Faith and Guiding Beliefs


The Bible:

The Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is God's revelation of himself to man. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth without any mixture of error, for its matter.


God:

There is one and only one living and true God. He is an intelligent, spiritual, and personal Being, the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe. The eternal God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being. 


Man:

Man was created by the special act of God in his own image, and is the crowning work of His creation. In the beginning man was innocent of sin and was endowed by His Creator with freedom of choice. By his free choice man sinned against God and brought sin into the human race. 


Salvation:

Salvation involves the redemption of the whole man, and is offered freely to all who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, who by His own blood obtained eternal redemption for the believer. 


The Church:

A New Testament Church of the Lord Jesus Christ is a local body of baptized believers who are associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the gospel, observing the two ordinances of Christ, committed to His teachings, exercising the gifts, rights, and privileges invested in them by His Word, and seeking to extend the gospel to the ends of the earth.



For more information, see the Baptist Faith & Message.



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A Brief History of

First Baptist Church, Galveston



The First Baptist Church located near the downtown area on Galveston Island is one of the oldest Baptist Churches in Texas. It was organized on January 30, 1840, in a private home with nine people joining by letter and two for Baptism. Of this number, only one came from the old south. All the rest were from such states as New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Maine, New York and Connecticut. From this humble beginning came a church, which has grown across the years.


The first pastor, Dr. James Huckins, a graduate of Brown University in Rhode Island, later established the First Baptist Church of Houston and was one of the founders of Baylor University. Huckins served as the church’s pastor from January 30, 1840 until December 31, 1847, and again from July 1, 1853 until December 31, 1859.


The first persons baptized into the membership of this church were Gail Borden and Penelope Borden. Borden was the city’s first Collector of Customs, appointed by the President of the Republic of Texas. He was the inventor of condensed milk, and after his death the company was renamed the Borden Milk Company. His baptism (in February 1840) was the first recorded west of Mississippi River. The church’s Sunday School was organized in 1846.


In 1847 Huckins resigned his duties as pastor and devoted himself full-time to raising funds for the fledgling Baylor University. On January 1, 1848, the church called the Reverend John Freeman Hillyer as pastor; he served until his resignation September 24, 1848.


The first House of Worship, a small wooden structure on 22nd Street between Avenue H and Avenue I, was dedicated on September 12. The building cost about $4,800 to build; it had 60 pews, a gallery across the back and an outer baptistery that was filled with water from a nearby well.


Pastors who have served since 1849 include:

Robert H. Taliaferro, 1849 – 1850

Jacob Beverly Stiteler, 1851 – 1853

James Huckins, 1853 – 1859

Pastor Stribling, 1859 – 1862 ?

Dr. William Howard, 1867 – 1879

William Overton Bailey, 1879- 1880  

Dr. Albert Theodore Spalding, 1881-1889

Dr. Abner Whatley Lamar, 1892-1895

Dr. William Mercer Harris, 1896-1905

Dr. Luther Little, 1905-1907

Dr. Edward Stubblefield, 1908-1918

Julian Harrison Pace, 1918-1920

Edwin Frank Adams, 1921-1925

Thomas F. Harvey, 1925-1929

Dr. Harold Lord Fickett , 1929-1955

John W. Salzman, 1955-1962

Dr. James Richard Perkins, 1962-1965

Grayson Glass, 1966-1978

Dr. James D. Springfield, 1979-1982

Dr. James McGlothin, 1982-1985

Dr. Max Brown, 1985-1992

Dr. Bobby R. Smith, 1993-1996

A. Ben Henderson, 1998-2000

Peter Jory, 2000-2004

Dr. Ray Meador, 2005 – 2016

John Turner, 2016-2018

 


Our Story

First Baptist Church Galveston is the oldest Southern Baptist Church in Texas. Founded in 1840, First Galveston has a storied history and bright future of impacting Galveston Island. We believe that our core values and our unique understanding of ourselves as people set the stage for First Baptist to lead a gospel centered charge into the future. 


We Are…   

A church for real people. We pride ourselves in being a place of authentic community where everyone can know and be known by one another, and that everyone has a place to belong. 


We Used to Be…

Individuals who were completely broken, but now we are grateful for the amazing grace that allows us to unite to God and one another.


We Serve… 

We serve a good and perfect God, and we believe that our mission as First Galveston is to

"Live out God's word into His world."