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The Content of the Noble New Hampshire Confession (Part 2)

by Tom Nettles

In the last entry, we saw how the New Hampshire Confession describes God’s operations of grace in the present so that our corruptions are overcome in his granting us salvation. This entry begins with the Confession’s statement on the location of these present operations in the divine purpose established in eternity.

The article entitled “Of God’s purpose of Grace” continues the robust affirmation of divine prerogative and power while also insisting on the immediate responsibility of man, or free agency, of man. The confession states, “We believe that election is the eternal purpose of God,” [not just his perfect foreknowledge of all things that will happen], “according to which he graciously regenerates, sanctifies, and saves sinners [God’s eternal purpose governs all the necessary operations by which he saves those he has elected], “that being perfectly consistent with the free agency of man, it comprehends all the means in connection with the end”……

Read the entire article here.

The Content of the Noble New Hampshire Confession (Part 1)

by Tom Nettles

In our last entry, we examined the complex context in which the New Hampshire Confession of Faith was written—the anti-mission-society movement, the Free Will Baptist movement, and the phenomenon of Charles Finney’s impact on Baptist ideas. In this entry we begin an examination of its content.

These challenges prompted the New Hampshire Baptist Convention to appoint a committee in 1830 to present a confession of faith that would summarize the views of the churches of the Convention. After several revisions both by individuals and other committees, it was finally presented in 1833 by the Board of the Convention and recommended to the churches for Adoption. In 1853, J. Newton Brown added two articles, “Repentance and Faith” and Sanctification,” and published the confession in a book he put together entitled The Baptist Church Manual.

 

Read the entire article here.

Free Ebook- Keach’s Catechism, or, The Baptist Catechism

September 23, 2016 Leave a comment

Benjamin Keach- Keach’s Catechism, or, The Baptist Catechism Available in Epub, .mobi, & Pdf (38 pages)

 

Source [Digital Puritan]

The Five Points of Reformed Baptist Churches

 

 

 

Five Points 1

Five Points 2

Reading the Bible Will Make You a Baptist

Taken from the Baptist Reporter, October, 1858

 

To the Editor of the Baptist Reporter,

Dear Sir, — I am a young baptist, and have only seen your Reporter for Jan., 1858. Having recently joined the body, I inquired for one of the publications published by the baptists, and a minister directed me to the Reporter, with which I am quite delighted. It occurred to me that I would mention a few of the objections to believers’ baptism which I met with whilst I was among the Independents. I am a young man, and am occasionally engaged in giving a word of exhortation to my neighbours; but I am what is called a “self-educated man,” for I have had to pick up what little knowledge I have obtained; and therefore I trust you will excuse the imperfections which you may discover in this communication.

When among the Independents, in conversations with my fellow-members, the subject of baptism was at times introduced, when one or another would say, “Well; I do think that the baptists are right, and that their mode of administering the ordinance is scriptural.” “Well,” was my reply, “if you consider that the baptists are right, and that their mode is scriptural, why not join them, and be right too, and observe that which you say is scriptural?” The reply they generally gave was, “Oh, it is so inconvenient; and if we are baptized, we shall be expected to join the baptist body, and then what will our minister and the people say? I do not think it matters much.”

It appeared to me an odd thing for them so to acknowledge their duty, and then give such feeble reasons for declining. I could not but wonder what there could be in believers’ baptism that made the ordinance so objectionable.

I talked with other friends on the matter, but was annoyed by their ignorance. They knew not so much as he who was enquiring. Some said, “Oh, these baptists think all wrong but themselves. Have nothing to do with them.” Others said, “Such a mode would suit a warm climate very well, where the people are in the habit of constantly bathing, but not a cold country like ours.” Others “thought that there was something very indecent about it.”

I then spake to a more intelligent class, and they informed me “that Christ only intended the ordinance to be observed by his servants in heathen lands, where Christianity was unknown, so that the converts to the gospel, by that ordinance, might publicly disown and cast off all their old heathenish practices.” Others reminded me, “that if I was going to enquire into such a subject, perhaps I would inform them why Christians do not recline at the table and take the bread and break it into pieces, instead of having it partly cut.”

Such were some of the helps I met with in the path of enquiry, from persons who professed to make the New Testament their rule of practice.

There are many in the Independent and other bodies who can say no more than the above. Why? Because, like those I have already mentioned, they have never thoroughly and impartially examined the subject. Ask them whether they have looked through the New Testament for instances of Infant Baptism; they reply, “No”. Ask them whether they have for evidence of believers’ baptism; they give the same reply.

Dissatisfied with such evasions, I resolved to search the New Testament for myself, with prayer for Divine guidance, and the result was that I became a Baptist.

The Conclusion

November 20, 2013 1 comment

Published in 1646

The Text used: There has been some updating of Old English words but otherwise no changes have been made to the original texts.

CONFESSION OF FAITH of seven congregations or churches of Christ in London. which are commonly, but unjustly, called Anabaptists; published for the vindication of the truth and information of the ignorant; likewise for the taking off those aspersions which are frequently, both in pulpit and print, unjustly cast upon them. Printed in London, Anno 1646.

 

The Conclusion

THUS we desire to give unto Christ that which is His; and unto all lawful authority that which is their due; and to owe nothing to any man but love; to live quietly and peaceably, as it becometh saints, endeavouring in all things to keep a good conscience, and to do unto every man (of what judgment soever) as we would they should do unto us, that as our practice is, so it may prove us to be a conscientious, quiet, and harmless people (no ways dangerous or troublesome to human society) and to labour and work with our hands that we may not be chargeable to any, but to give to him that needeth, both friends and enemies, accounting it more excellent to give than to receive.

Also we confess, that we know but in part, and that we are ignorant of many things which we desire and seek to know; and if any shall do us that friendly part to show us from the word of God what we see not, we shall have cause to be thankful to God and them; but if any man shall impose upon us anything that we see not to be commanded by our Lord Jesus Christ, we should in His strength rather embrace all reproaches and tortures of men, to be stripped of all outward comforts, and if it were possible, to die a thousand deaths, rather than to do anything against the least tittle of the truth of God or against the light of our own consciences. And if any shall call what we have said heresy, then do we with the Apostle acknowledge, that after the way they call heresy, worship we the God of our fathers, disclaiming all heresies (rightly so called) because they are against Christ, and to be steadfast and unmovable, always abounding in obedience to Christ, as knowing our labour shall not be in vain in the Lord.

Psalm 74:21,22

ARISE, O God, plead thine own cause; remember how the foolish man blasphemeth Thee daily. O let not the oppressed return ashamed, but let the poor and needy praise Thy name.

Come, Lord Jesus, come quickly.

The First London Baptist Confession 1644/46

Let us work with other Christian denominations without sacrificing our convictions

broadusII. MEANS AND METHODS OF PERFORMING THIS DUTY

5. Let us gladly cooperate with our fellow Christians of other Persuasions in general Christian work as far as we can without sacrificing our Convictions. Men who think ill of us are sometimes sorely perplexed. They say, “Look at these narrow-minded, bigoted ‘close-communion’ Baptists! How zealously they work in our union enterprise! how loving they seem to be! I don’t understand it.?

It is well to increase this perplexity. At the same time, we must not allow our conscientious differences to be belittled. Sometimes in a union service you will hear a well-meaning and warm-hearted man begin to gush, till at length he speaks scornfully of the trifles that divide us. In such a case one might find some means of diverting the dear brothers mind to another topic, and either publicly or privately inform him that such talk will not quite do.

Indeed, this is coming to be better understood than was the case a few years ago. In Young Men’s Christian Association for example, one seldom encounters now the unwise speeches this respect that were once somewhat common. We must lean how to distinguish between abandonment of principles and mere practical concessions in order to conciliate, a distinction well lustrated for us in Acts 15 and in Paul’s action as to Titus and Timothy. In the case of Titus the apostle would not yield an inch, would not give place for an hour, because a distinct of principle was made; and shortly after he voluntarily did, the case of Timothy, what he had before refused, there being now no issue of principle.

It may sometimes be difficult to make the distinction, but that is a difficulty we may not shirk. One of the great practical problems of the Christian life, especially in our times, is to squarely for truth and squarely against error, and yet to hearty charity toward Christians who differ with us. This assuredly can be done. The very truest and sweetest Christian charity is actually shown by some of those who stand most firmly by their distinctive opinions.

John A. Broadus-The Duty of Baptists to Teach Their Distinctive Views

We should know the doctrines of those of whom we oppose

broadusII. MEANS AND METHODS OF PERFORMING THIS DUTY

3. If we wish to teach our distinctive views to others, it is neccessary to understand those whom we propose to reach. I remember a teacher of modern languages who would often elaborately explain some French or German or other idiom with which had no difficulty at all, and then pass over as not needing explanation many a phrase we could not understand. He knew the language he was teaching, but was not well acquainted with the language of his pupils.

If we would in any way teach effectively, we must know things look of the persons addressed; we must get their point of view. Now, Baptists are not, on the whole, so ignorant of denominational opinions of other Christians as they are of ours, because our circumstances have compelled us to give some attention to that matter. Yet we need a much better acquaintance with them if we would speak to any purpose in public or private. I respectfully urge upon all ministers and upon intelligent private members of both sexes that they shall study, by reading and personal inquiry, each of the leading religious bodies with they have to do, shall study them in three respects:

(a) Inquire what are the characteristic peculiarities of this body of Christians differencing them from others, and if possible at the fundamental opinions which account for these peculiarities.

(b) Consider in what respects they particularly deserve our admiration and, with the necessary changes, our imitation. Denomination emphasizes certain aspects of truth or departments of duty, and will in regard to these present a very instructive and inspiring model.

(c) Strive to ascertain how they regard tenets, practices, and spirit. What things in us they especially dislike, and with what they might easily feel sympathy.

Such inquiries will help us in several ways. They may restrain the tendency to react from what we regard as the errors of others into an opposite extreme, as Protestants have done with reference to some errors of Popery, and many Baptists with reference to prelatical or pastoral domination, to clerical support, etc. They may check the unconscious adoption or imitation of opinions, sentiments, or phrases which are inconsistent, or at least incongruous, in us.

We rejoice in that “progress of Baptist principles” among Paedobaptists which Dr. Curtis’s book so well describes, and perhaps fail to inquire whether there be not a counter-influence which deserves attention, and which may not be wholly beneficial. And then this study of other denominations will enable us better to adapt ourselves to those whom we would influence. When you address to Methodists an article suited to High Churchmen or vice versa, what in the world are you thinking about?

John A. Broadus-The Duty of Baptists to Teach Their Distinctive Views

The internal and external elements of Christianity are important

February 8, 2013 2 comments

“Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.” Matthew 28: 20.

The things he had commanded include the internal and the external elements of Christian piety. Of the latter, they include ethical instruction and directions as to the conduct of Christian societies. These directions were afterward supplemented by inspired apostles giving instructions as to the constitution and government of the Christian societies, or churches, and the characteristic ceremonies they were to observe. These matters taming to the Christian societies are certainly not so import as the internal and spiritual elements of piety or as ethical principles and precepts, but still they are important. We may sure they are, from the fact that Christ and his apostles gave correction concerning them; and we can see why they must important.

John A. Broadus-The Duty of Baptists to Teach Their Distinctive Views

John Tombes’ Catechism on Baptism Pt 3

5. Why did Paul then say, Christ sent him not to Baptize? 1 Cor. 1.16.

Not because he was not appointed at all to Baptize, for if so, he would not have Baptized those he did Baptize, 1 Cor. 1.14.16. etc. But because it was not the chief thing he was to do, as when the washing of Water is said not to save, 1 Pet. 3.21. because it is not the only, or principal means of saving.

6. What is the Baptizing appointed by Jesus Christ?

The Baptizing appointed by Jesus Christ, is the dipping of the Whole Body in water in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, as is manifest from the term Baptizing, and the use of going into and coming up out of water, Mat. 3.16. Acts 8.38,39. the use of much water, John 3.23. The resembling, by the Baptism used, the burial and Resurrection of Christ, Rom. 6.4. Col. 2.12. and the testimonies of the Ancients of the first Ages.

7. May not the sprinkling or pouring water on the Face be the Baptism of Christ?

Neither the Scripture, nor any other antient author call sprinkling, or pouring water on the Face, Baptism, nor any use of it in the primitive times doth countenance it, and therefore such sprinkling or pouring water is not the Baptism which Christ appointed.

8. What is it to Baptize into the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost?

It is not to baptize only with the naming of those persons, but into the profession of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, as our Master or Teacher, as appears by the words of Paul, 1 Cor. 1.13. Which shew that if the Corinthians had been baptized into the name of Paul, they had professed him to be their master.

A Short Catechism about Baptism by John Tombes, B.D.

Heb 6.2. Of the Doctrine of Baptisms. Luke 7.35. But Wisdom is justified of all her Children. London: 1659