In April, 1847, he entered the Freshman Class of Bethany College. While at college he made the good confession, and was immersed, by Professor PENDLETON, in April, 1848. So soon as he became a Christian, he determined to devote his life to the preaching of the Gospel, and it was not long before he gave very conclusive evidence of fitness for the work. In July, 1850, he graduated as one of the honor men, delivering the Greek speech, and receiving marked tokens from the faculty of their high appreciation of his scholarship.
At the call of the Church in Fayette, Brother M'GARVEY gave up his school, and, in September, 1851, was ordained to the work of the ministry, and afterward preached for the Church at Fayette and neighboring county churches until February, 1853, when he removed to Dover, Lafayette County, Missouri.
He resided at Dover nine years, and, during this period, he spent about half of the time at home, and, the remainder, preaching extensively over the State of Missouri, holding five public debates with various religious parties; he also collected money to erect a boarding-school in his village, and conducted the school two years.
In the spring of 1862, he accepted the pastoral care of the Church in Lexington, Kentucky, where a large field of usefulness was open to him. During the same year he published his "Commentary on Acts," which had occupied all the time he could devote to it for three and a half years. This is a work of decided merit, and at once fixes his reputation as a fine Biblical scholar.
On the removal of Kentucky University to Lexington, in 1865, he accepted a chair in the College of the Bible, with the understanding that only a small portion of his time was to be devoted to teaching, such as would not materially interfere with his labors in the Church. Under his ministry, the Church had reached a remarkable degree of prosperity, and his labors were highly appreciated by the entire congregation. But, finding that his whole time was needed in the university, in 1866, he resigned his charge of the Church; but, as the Church has not succeeded in obtaining the regular services of a suitable man, he has not yet been relieved. President GRAHAM, however, now shares the labor of preaching with him.
---Moore, W. T., Living Pulpit of the Christian Church.