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Reformed Baptist Piety

by Bob Gonzales

Reformed Baptist Seminary asked Dr. Michael Haykin to deliver three lectures on the practical piety exemplified in the teaching and practice of early English Baptists of the 17th and 18th centuries. In the first lecture, Dr. Haykin demonstrates how the 17th and 18th century Calvinist Baptists stressed the importance of the “means of grace” for promoting spiritual growth in the church. Baptist theologian Andrew Fuller’s teaching on the spirituality of baptism is the topic of lecture two. Finally, Dr. Haykin focuses on the life and ministry of Samuel Pearce, a contemporary and friend of William Carey and Andrew Fuller. These lectures constitute part of the curriculum for RBS’s course PT 501 Call & Cultivation. If you’d like to audit the lectures of the entire course, click here.

Lecture 1: The Means of Grace in English Baptist Piety, 1660s-1810s


Lecture 2: “A Garden Enclosed”: Spirituality of Baptism in Andrew Fuller


Lecture 3: “A Mind Wholly Given to God”: The Piety of Samuel Pearce

 
Source [It is Written]

Some believe that the scriptures do not need any interpreting

Arthur PinkOn the other hand, there are some misguided souls who have suffered the pendulum to swing to the opposite extreme, denying that the Scriptures need any interpreting. They aver they have been written for simple souls, saying what they mean and meaning what they say. They insist that the Bible requires to be believed and not explained. But it is wrong to pit those two things against each other: both are necessary. God does not ask for blind credence from us, but an intelligent faith, and for that three things are indispensable: that His Word should be read (or heard), understood, and personally appropriated. None other than Christ Himself gave exhortation, “Whoso readeth, let him understand” (Matthew 24:15)—the mind must be exercised upon what is read. That a certain amount of understanding is imperative appears further from our Lord’s parable of the Sower and the Seed:

 

“When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart.., but he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it” (Matthew 13:19, 23).

 

Then let us spare no pains to arrive at the meaning of what we read, for what use can we make of what is unintelligible to us?

 

Arthur W. Pink-Interpretation of the Scriptures

Question 41-Puritan Catechism

October 17, 2013 2 comments

Spurgeon 1Q. What is the sum of the ten commandments?

A. The sum of the ten commandments is to love the Lord our God with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our strength, and with all our mind; and our neighbor as ourselves. (Matthew 22:37-40)

Charles Haddon Spurgeon-A Puritan Catechism

Beware of deriving comfort from the distress of mind

April 29, 2013 3 comments

fuller3. Beware of deriving comfort from the distress of mind which you may have undergone, or from any feelings within you. Some religious people will tell you, that these workings of mind are a sign that God has mercy in reserve for you; and that, if you go on in the way you are in waiting as at the pool, all will be well in the end; but such language requires great qualification. It is not your being distressed in mind that will prove anything in your favor, but the issue of it. Saul was distressed as well as Davis and Judas, as well as Peter. When the murderers of our Lord were pricked in their hearts, Peter did not comfort them by representing this their unhappiness as a hopeful sign of conversion; but exhorted them to repent, and be baptized every one them in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins.

And thus it was with Paul and Silas, when the jailer was impressed with fear and dismay: they gave him no encouragement from thence, but preached Jesus Christ as the only source of hope. If one who had slain a man in Israel, had stopped short of the City of refuge, and endeavored to draw comfort from the alarm which he had felt, lest the avenger of blood should overtake him, would he have been safe? There is no security to you or to any man, but in fleeing immediately to the Gospel-refuge and laying hold of the hope set before you. If you take comfort from your distress, you are in immiment danger of stopping short of Christ, and so of perishing for ever. Many no doubt, have done so; and that which they have accounted waiting at the pool for the moving of the waters, has proved no other than settling upon a false foundation. Indeed, it must needs be so; for as there is no medium in one that has heard the gospel, between faith and unbelief, he that does not believe in Jesus for salvation, if be have any hope of it, must derive that hope from something in himself.

Rev. Andrew Fuller–The Great Question Answered

Can Christians fall and be lost?

December 12, 2012 Leave a comment

But our first parents also fell from their original state of holiness. If so, may not christians under similar influences, fall and be lost?

This proposition demands our serious investigation. I observe, that between their primitive condition, and that of truly regenerated men of subsequent ages, no such similarity exists, as will admit of conclusive reasoning from the one to the other. Let several facts, evincive of the truth of this statement, be considered. You will, in the first place, remember that the covenant of God with them was wholly different from that upon which you now stand. To Adam Jehovah said―”Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat. But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not ear of it; for in the day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die.”

The obligation of this covenant was a simple negative, upon a single point. How easy would have been compliance. The conditions were explicit―obey, and live; disobey, and die. The result need not be repeated.

With this, contrast the Gospel Covenant―”I will put my laws into their mind, (saith Jehovah) and write them in their hearts; and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people; and they shall not teach every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, know the Lord; for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest; for I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins, and their iniquities will I remember no more.”

Well may this be distinguished as “the covenant of grace!” How utterly unlike the Adamic. With our first parents all was unbending justice; with you all is favor, mercy, boundless forbearance. In the covenant with them, no provision was made for the pardon of sin; in the Gospel covenant, this is one of the strongest features. Besides all this, they were, until they sinned, utter strangers to pain, and sorrow, and wasting wretchedness. They had not experience of evil. You have known all its bitterness. And further, They disposed of their own life, and alas! incurred its dreadful forfeiture! “Ye are lead (to sin) and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also, appear with his in glory.”

Their condition was wholly different from yours. Almost its antipodes. The reasoning from analogy therefore―is here clearly out of place―it is not legitimate. Neither, as you now see, from the fall of angels nor of our first parents, from their original state of holiness, can any valid arguments be adduced, proving that regenerated men, once depraved and sinful, but now redeemed and sanctified, are liable to “loose their faith, and regeneration, or to continue in apostasy, and so eternally perish.” The objection is without relevancy, or force.

R. B. C. Howell—Perseverance of the Saints

We Must Persevere in the Work of the Lord

We must persevere in the work of the Lord to the end. When Israel came out of Egypt, I suppose they all intended to go forward, and to possess the land: but when difficulties arose, the great body of them fainted, and were for going back. When an undertaking is new and plausible, many come forward to engage in it: but a time comes when the first flush of spirits subsides, when great and seemingly insurmountable difficulties present themselves, and when success appears to be much farther off than at the beginning: this is the time for the trial of faith. A few such seasons will commonly thin the ranks of Christian professors; but blessed are they that endure temptation. Those who followed the Lord fully were brought into the land. It is possible that our motives may be pure at the outset, and yet, through the strength of temptation, we may be turned aside. The Lord speaks well of the church of Ephesus, as having, for a time, borne, and had patience, and for his names sake had laboured, and not fainted: yet it follows, Nevertheless, I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast justify thy first love. This is an example for us to shun. Another follows, namely, the church at Thyatira, for our imitation: I know thy works, and thy charity, and service and faith, and thy patience, and thy works, AND THE LAST TO BE MORE THAN THE FIRST.

Rev. Andrew Fuller-God’s Approbation of our Labours Necessary to the Hope of Success-Preached

Concerning Reason

Dr. Henning asked: “Is reason to hold no authority at all with Christians, since it is to be set aside in matters of faith?” The Doctor replied: Before faith and the knowledge of God, reason is mere darkness; but in the hands of those who believe, ’tis an excellent instrument. All facilities and gifts are pernicious, exercised by the impious; but most salutary when possessed by godly persons.”

Martin Luther (1483-1546), Table Talk, LXXVI. [1569]