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Updated Links: Reformed Baptist and Particular Baptist Links

Over the past year, I have been away from my home and thus, away from my blog. During that time I have received countless emails, from those who follow my blog and website, of which have notified me that many links were broken on my sites. I am putting this post out today to let everyone know that all links, except for the Free Ebooks Page (1), have been fixed or deleted. Those links that were deleted will be discussed below.

Sometimes in life a man must make a decision that will cause him to leave the comforts of his home, in order to better provide for his family. When a job plays out, a job which a man has been used to doing for many years, a man must seek out a job that will make him valuable in other fields of industry. That being said, I chose to go back to driving a big rig or tractor trailer for a year. Now mind you, I had not driven a big rig in 17 years however, I knew that a shortage in this industry would readily provide me with a job and after a year would make me valuable as a local driver. I have driven all over the United States in the last year. I have been in California, Washington, Massachusetts, and Florida; from one corner of the US to another. I have endured: driving in extreme weather conditions, loneliness, being away from family, missing birthdays and holidays, and being away from what I enjoy most; namely: studying theology and updating my blog and website. I have missed interacting with those, with whom I have had discussions concerning theology on the internet. So that being said, I am now back at home and seeking that local driving position. I am asking everyone to be in prayer for me that I will find a local driving job that will provide for my family and allow me to get back to studying the things of God.

Deleted Links

When I left a year ago Reformed Baptists were making strides in recovering a covenantal heritage which had been obscured or lost over time. Articles were being written, sermons preached, and Ebooks made available online, which defended what we believe, concerning faith and practice of that faith within the local Church. Articles which defended believers-only-baptism and that showed infant baptism to be an erroneous position not supported by scripture were only a click away. Sadly, this is not now the case.

I have links on my website from Reformed paedobaptists. Also on my Apologetics page I have links from Catholic Apologists(2) that defend God’s existence. These links, for the most part, were still working and have not been deleted. However, among my Particular Baptists brethren, things have changed quite a bit within a year.

Reformed Baptist, Particular Baptist, Sovereign Grace Baptist (5 Point Baptist those called Calvinistic Baptist) and Primitive Baptist links no longer work. (From now on I will just use the term Particular Baptist because all these branches, of what is known as Baptist, have this doctrine in common; although not all adhere to covenant theology). Articles that argued from a covenantal Baptist position or articles which proved infant baptism to be an erroneous position, not supported by scripture, have disappeared. Some articles which can be found with a search of the internet are no longer free, but one must buy some book in order to gain access to these materials. I am not saying that just articles have disappeared, whole websites which have been up and running for years, of which had free Ebooks from Spurgeon, Pink, Gill, etc… have completely shut down. Blogs that I followed which supported and defended the Particular Baptist position have been deleted. So you will notice, on my sidebar to the right, that my Blog Roll has decreased drastically.

What caused these blogs and websites to completely shut down or what caused articles to be taken down and concealed inside books that require a reader to purchase them? I do not know. Did someone at the top of the ladder fall into sin and have to be disciplined? Did a huge controversy over doctrine breakout in the Particular Baptist movement? At the present time, I have no answers.

The large majority of books or articles, which I thought defended our positions concerning doctrine, I possess within my own personal library. Even though I have much space within my own website to upload these materials, nevertheless to keep from infringing on copyrights, I had no choice but to remove the broken links and just allow what remains on my sites to suffice any student of theology.

So to close, I welcome everyone back to my sites, as the links have been restored or deleted.

God bless,

Hershel Lee Harvell Jr.

(1) The Free Ebooks page links will be fixed within the next few weeks. I appreciate your patience.

(2) I can hear the critics now. You mean you provide links to Roman Catholic Apologists? Yes, I most certainly do. Most of them defend a Christian worldview from a Classical Apologetics position and have some good articles against: moral relativism, the problem of evil, atheism and the defense of God’s existence, etc… Someone might say, “Well Classical Apologetics is not a good or true apologetic methodology for defending the Christian worldview.” However, this is an in-house debate, even among Protestants themselves. There is not a mutual agreement among Protestant theologians concerning epistemology.

As a disclaimer: Every link on my site is not there because I agree with every position that the writer of the article holds, but is there to provide a student of theology access to topics which will increase his knowledge in all areas of theology. For instance: On my Baptismal Debates Page, I have articles linked which defend a credo-Baptist position. I also have articles linked which either critic the credo-Baptist position or that defend a paedo-baptist position. The reason being, is that a student of theology can read both sides of the argument and decide for himself which position he will take. About 6 months after I came to the knowledge of Calvinism, I made an appointment with a PCA Pastor and questioned him concerning what I was learning. I wanted to make sure that I had a right understanding of the doctrines of grace. This Pastor did not rail on me and tell me that his position was the correct one concerning all that he believed, but instead encouraged me to keep studying and told me that I needed to study baptism and church government and decide whether or not I was going to hold to credo-baptism and congregationalism or whether I was going to hold to paedo-baptism and a Presbyterian form of church government.(a) So I studied both sides of the doctrinal positions and came to a point where I decided that the Reformed Baptist position was the correct one.

(a) The advise of this PCA Pastor was unlike that of the Pentecostal Pastor I sat under after I first got saved. The Pentecostal Pastor I sat under, after I first got saved, was adamant in stating that if I did not hold to every doctrine he does or if I did not interpret every scripture as he does, then I was a heretic. This is brainwashing and was not the signs of a true Pastor of a Church, but instead was the signs of a cult. I have come to realize, through study, that he was holding heretical positions. He even thinks that Martin Luther was wrong concerning being saved by faith alone. He believes, as Roman Catholics do, that salvation is through faith plus works. That was straight out of his mouth.

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The Case for Credobaptism

A note from Executive Editor, Jonathan Master:

Theology matters. Place for Truth has no interest in smoothing over the rough edges of disagreements within the Reformed confessional tradition. But we also know that debates can often descend into name-calling and straw man arguments. Over two days, we are posting two brief summaries – one by a pastor of paedo-baptist persuasion, one by a Baptist pastor – on a subject that matters. We hope you’ll read both. They’ve each read the other’s article, and they’ve both presented their own arguments clearly and fairly. Both men argue – as you’ll see – from a theological perspective that reflects the framework of the Reformed confessions. Neither backs down. But the arguments they employ, and the spirit with which they employ them, are worthy of our time and attention.


by Samuel Renihan

The practice of baptizing professing believers is grounded upon two complementary foundations. The first is an argument from the covenants of Scripture. The second is an argument from the commands of Scripture related to those covenants. Credobaptists and paedobaptists often assume, or argue, that the people of a given covenant receive the covenant sign. Thus, in the case of the subjects of baptism one must simply identify the covenant people. This is insufficient. The administration of covenantal ordinances is governed by specific laws, which must be obeyed strictly. For example, women were members of Abraham’s covenant but they were not recipients of its sign, circumcision. Likewise, infant males were circumcised, but only on the eighth day. As a result, to determine the subjects of baptism one must first identify and distinguish the covenants involved and then examine the accompanying laws.

 

 

 

Read the entire article here.

What’s new in the revised edition of the Distinctiveness of Baptist Covenant Theology?

February 13, 2017 Leave a comment

distinctiveness-revised-194x300By Pascal Denault

Since my book first came out in January of 2013, I wanted to revise it. At first it was minor corrections and typos, but along the way came some important precision that I wanted to include in my work. I have written this blog post to explain what’s new in the revised edition of the Distinctiveness. If you think it’s worth it, you may buy the paperback version or the kindle version (available beginning of next week Feb. 12th) on Amazon. Let’s start with a new endorsement by an important French theologian.

HENRI BLOCHER

The French-speaking Baptists, at least those from Europe (as I am), often ignore the Reformed origin from which the Baptist faith emerged—the genealogical continuity is certain. The fine work of this French Canadian pastor on the theology of the covenant, or the covenants, which was elaborated by the ancient Baptist doctors debating the other Reformed theologians, vividly presents this rooting. It also highlights….

 

 

 

Read the entire article here.

Identity Theft

By Tom Chantry

Todd Pruitt has responded to my post on the MOS blog, and I appreciate the serious engagement. I am somewhat frustrated to be asked questions on a blog that does not accept comments, but I fully understand. Comment threads breed problems, and I have turned them off on some of my own posts. Consequently I’ll put my answer here.

Pruitt spends most of his post arguing that Baptist life is far too complicated to describe easily in an informal conversation such as an MOS podcast. By “Reformed Baptist” they meant Calvinistic Baptists of various stripes. I am certain this was an unintentional error, but it was an error nonetheless. Using “Reformed Baptist” to refer to all Calvinistic Baptists is like using “asparagus” when what you intended to say was “vegetable.”

I know I’ve written about this before, but perhaps someone is actually reading this time, so I’ll go over it again. In the early 1960s, there were various Baptists with somewhat Calvinistic approaches to soteriology…..

 

 

 

Read the entire article here.

A Brief History of Reformed Baptists

THE HISTORY AND PRESENT STATE OF REFORMED BAPTISTS 
by Steve Martin, Pastor, Heritage Church, Evangelical-Reformed-Baptist, Fayetteville, Georgia

Genesis 26:18 –  “Isaac unstopped the wells the Philistines had stopped up …” 
THE HISTORY OF REFORMED BAPTISTS IN AMERICA

The 17th and 18th Century Explosion of Calvinistic Baptists

America was settled by Europeans seeking religious freedom, political freedom, economic opportunities, wealth, adventure and frequently an admixture of more than one ingredient. Apart from the Calvinist radical Roger Williams, who was briefly a Baptist, Baptists had scant representation in the 17th century colonies. But by the 18th century “Evangelical Awakening” (called the Great Awakening in the colonies), Baptists, especially Calvinistic Baptists, began to make their mark. The revival not only brought many of the unchurched into the Kingdom of God, but it also split many Congregational, Anglican and Presbyterian churches.  Some of the resulting “Separatist Churches” became Baptists en masse.  Baptist churches grew from 96 to 457 in forty years. Most of them were Calvinistic Baptists.  Pastors and itinerant evangelists whose names are almost forgotten saw a multitude of souls come into the Kingdom through their preaching and an equal number of revived Christians becoming Baptists:  Isaac Backus, Hezekiah Smith and Morgan Edwards from the northern colonies; Shubal Stearns, Daniel Marshall, Oliver Hart and Richard Furman in the southern colonies.  Like mushrooms after a summer rain, Baptist churches sprang up all over the 13 original colonies.  While observing the hard-won Baptist doctrine of the independency of each local congregation, Colonial Baptists also associated with other like-minded churches in local and regional associations. The earliest and most famous associations, Rhode Island, Philadelphia and Charleston, each adopted the 2nd London Confession of 1689. [e.g. Elias Keach, son of Baptist patriarch Benjamin Keach, helped the Philadelphia Association adopt the 2nd London Confession, with an appendix on singing hymns – hence the Philadelphia Confession of Faith.]  By the early 1800s, there were 128 Baptist associations.  Baptists had come to outnumber Anglicans who had a century and a half start on them.

 

 

 

Read the entire article here.

A Word of Advice to our Friends at MOS

by Tom Chantry

Hoo, boy! I’m getting tired of blogging on the same subject over and over, but here we go again:

I wanted to be positive about today’s episode of Mortification of Spin. Honestly, I did. Carl Trueman, Todd Pruitt, and Aimee Byrd chatted about the difficulties facing credo-baptists and paedo-baptists who decide to marry, and that is a worthwhile discussion. There was even much to commend in this particular episode:

■Diverging views of baptism do not constitute different faiths, and there is no biblical command against marrying across this particular line. I would add that neither the Westminster Standards or the Second London (Baptist) Confession forbid such marriages.

■Real practical issues are at stake when credo-baptists and paedo-baptists marry; particularly if they are raising children, and those should be thought through and talked through in advance of marriage.

■There should be no presumption of one side needing to always be the one to compromise. I might have put this a bit differently than Trueman, but in principle I agree.

■Pastoral care requires that we address these issues gently and faithfully in premarital counseling.

 

 

 

Read the entire article here.

The Reformed Baptist Myth

by Tom Chantry

I’m writing from Rockford, Illinois, where I am this week attending the General Assembly of ARBCA – the Association of Reformed Baptist Churches of America. ARBCA represents one wing of the Reformed Baptist movement, the confessional associationalists located in North America. By “confessional,” I mean that our churches are defined according to the teachings of the 1689 Confession of Faith in all its particulars, and by “associational,” I mean that we are convinced of our duty to associate formally with one another for mutual help and support. These concepts are closely related, both in that our confession (in chapter 26, paragraphs 14 and 15) requires association, and in that true association requires the confessional subscription in order that we might commend one another and commit ourselves to one another.

 

 

 

Read the entire article here.