John Jay Butler

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John Jay Butler (April 9, 1814 – ?) was an ordained minister and Professor Emeritus of Systematic Theology in the early Free Will Baptist movement in New England.

He was born in Berwick, Maine and graduated at Bowdoin College in 1837. Following his graduation, he began teaching as an assistant teacher in the seminary in Parsonsfield for a few months. The highlights of his teaching career included holding the professorship of systematic theology in the Whitestown Seminary at Whitestown, New York for 10 years, as well as holding the professorship of systematic theology in the seminary at New Hampton, New Hampshire for 16 years, and in Bates College at Lewiston, Maine for 3 years. In 1860, Bowdoin College gave him the degree of Doctor of Divinity.

In 1873, Butler took the chair of Hebrew Language and Literature at Hillsdale College.[1]

He was the author of:

  • Natural and Revealed Theology (Dover, New Hampshire, 1861)
  • Commentary on the Gospels (1870)
  • Commentary on the Acts, Romans, and First and Second Corinthians (1871)
  • Lectures on systematic theology: embracing the existence and attributes of God, the authority and doctrine of the scriptures, the institutions and ordinances of the gospel (with Ransom Dunn, 1892)

In 1834, Dr. Butler became the assistant editor of The Morning Star, a Free Will Baptist publication.


  1. ^ Collections and Researches Made by the Michigan Pioneer and Historical Society, Vol. XXXII. Lansing, MI: Robert Smith Printing Co. 1903. p. 457. 
  • History of Bowdoin College: With Biographical Sketches of Its Graduates, from 1806 to 1879; J. R. Osgood & Co., 1882
  • The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans; John Howard Brown, 1904