Home > Church > Sam Waldron Believes in “Absolute Parity”? A Misleading Misnomer

Sam Waldron Believes in “Absolute Parity”? A Misleading Misnomer

Though I do not know Tom Chantry, Dave Dykstra has treated me with great kindness in the past. I have read with interest the perspectives of Dave Dykstra and Tom Chantry on the history of the Reformed Baptist movement in the United States on Chantry’s blog. I think that Dykstra and Chantry have tried to be fair to the Reformed Baptist Church of Grand Rapids (RBCGR) of which I was a pastor for 24 years. Still, at times I have cringed at statements that I thought needed qualifying or were one-sided. I may yet decide to give my qualifications and perspectives about some of these matters. Here, however, I am forced for the sake of accuracy, clarity, truth, and simple self-preservation to take issue especially with one statement made by them in their 12th blog post:

“In the 1980s, Grand Rapids Pastor Sam Waldron in his 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith: a Modern Exposition (amazon) would express the absolute parity view held in both Montville and in Grand Rapids.”

Let me state my concern very clearly. I do not now and have never held the view of “absolute parity” of the elders. Let me make clear what I mean and why I say this. The phrase, absolute parity, makes it appear that I hold a view of parity that is not qualified or nuanced. I do not. There are people out there who hold views of parity that are in my view unqualified. I believe there are those of the “Brethren” persuasion who might hold something that could be called absolute parity. But I do not. The notion, for instance, that no elders should be supported or that all elders should be supported equally would seem to follow from an absolute parity view, but it is something that I have never held. In the very book cited by Chantry-Dykstra I made clear that parity does not require all elders to be supported equally. Here are a couple of quotations from my exposition of chapter 26 of the 1689 Baptist Confession.

 

Read the entire article here.

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