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John Gano

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John Gano

(1727-1804)

John Gano was a Baptist preacher and a chaplain during the Revolutionary War. He had the privilege of Baptizing George Washington. The date of Washington's conversion and immersion are even engraved on Gano's tombstone. John was born on July 22, 1727 in Hopewell, New Jersey. His family originally came to America from France. John's father was a Presbyterian and his mother was a Baptist. John was very influenced by his father's faith and desired to be like him. With such a strong Christian influence his family represented in his life, at the age of twenty John accepted Christ as his Saviour.

John was not very educated; but after his conversion, he began to study the Bible extensively and became convicted about baptism. He had been baptized as an infant in the Presbyterian Church, but he felt that baptism was by immersion. He began to have many discussions with several Presbyterian ministers, but was still not satisfied with their answers. After having a dialogue with the well-known Gilbert Tennant, a Presbyterian pastor, it is recorded that Mr. Tennant said to him, "Dear young man, if the devil cannot destroy your soul he will endeavor to destroy your comfort and usefulness, and, therefore, do not be always doubting in this matter. If you cannot think as I do, think for yourself." Although John Gano's father did not agree with him on the matter, he allowed John to get baptized in the Baptist church.

It was after his baptism that he became a member of the Baptist church in Hopewell. He was strongly convicted by the Lord to begin preaching. It is said that he was so consumed by these thoughts that he often couldn't focus on other things. John would often share the Gospel with all those who were around him. He couldn't contain himself and had such a passion and zeal for the things of the Lord. John preached every opportunity that he got. In 1754 he began traveling to Virginia and preached in many different parts of the state. His heart was passionate about evangelism. John Gano influenced thousands of Americans during this time. In the many places that he would bed for the night, he often led those people

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