A question about Baptist theology

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by ChurchBoy, May 30, 2006.

  1. ChurchBoy

    ChurchBoy
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    Is Baptist theology offically "cessationist". If so, does this mean that Baptists that speak in togues or claim gifts of prophesy, healing, etc. are in error, rebellious or "heretics"?
     
  2. J.D.

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    There is no "official" baptist theology, per se. Each church decides through their own autonomy what provisions are placed into their constitution and by laws.

    However, there is a "general" theology of Baptists, and generally speaking, the large majority of baptists are cessationists. And it's my understanding that most of those that are not cessationists, do not practice the miraculous gifts in the same way that the pentacostals do. Some don't practice any at all, they just hold that God has not necessarily ceased from these type of works. There are some, I think very few, that practice a "private prayer language" and call this the gift of tongues. A few more practice laying on of hands for healing.

    for the record I'm a complete cessationist - the miraculous gifts were related only to the apostles and the age of their work in establishment of the jew/gentile transition into the church.
     
  3. Bro Tony

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    I believe JD did a wonderful job of explaining the matter of cessationist in the Baptist church.

    I find myself in the category of one who believes the gifts were given for the church age and not just for the time of the Apostles. I agree completely with JD that does not mean I believe the pentecostal and charismatics are properly functioning in the "gifts".

    Bro Tony

    :wavey: <<<raising my hand is that allowed in a Baptist forum:smilewinkgrin:
     
  4. J. Jump

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    I don't know if this is a very widely held opinion among Baptists, but I belong to a Baptist church and hold to this view. I don't think that the sign gifts are ceased, but rather shelved during this time. I believe the Bible teaches signs are for Jews (nation of Israel) in regard to the message of the kingdom.

    Since God has set the nation of Israel aside and taken the offer of the kingdom away from the nation of Israel as a whole there is no longer a need for these sign gifts.

    However these gifts will show up again when God turns His attention back to the nation of Israel as a whole in relation to the earthly kingdom that was promised to the nation.

    So they haven't ceased all together, but the purpose for them isn't in play, so therefore there is no need of them at this time, but a time will come when their purpose will be back in play.

    Maybe that's what "Baptists" mean by ceased I'm not sure, but I've always gotten the idea that they mean they were for the first century and have ceased never to return?
     
  5. Salamander

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    As long as it lines up in the context of the Bible, it remains cessionist.:praise: :Fish: :praise:
     
  6. ChurchBoy

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    I see. So what would you consider "proper" use of the sign gifts todays within a proper Baptist theology. Can you think of some examples? Thanks! :thumbs:
     
  7. Bro Tony

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    Thanks for the question churchboy..

    I have had missionaries personally tell me of times when God spoke throught them as they shared the message of the Gospel to someone whose language they did not understand or speak---Paul said--"tongues are a sign for the unbeliever"

    I have seen God use people praying for the sick to be healed, not like on TV but genuine healing for a genuine ailment.

    More later I have to run,

    Bro Tony
     
  8. 2BHizown

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  9. doulous

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    CB - here is what I would like to see among those who believe the sign gifts are operational today:

    • Speak a language you have never spoken before with an interpreter present.
    • Heal a physical condition that does not have a chance to be healed naturally (i.e. restore a withered hand, give sight to the blind, raise the dead).
    • Receive direct revelation from God that is backed up by miraculous power given by the Holy Spirit.
    Unfortunately what passes for the sign gifts today is a poor imposter of how the gifts really functioned.

    imho
     
  10. epistemaniac

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    I would have to respectfully disagree.... the Centurion Cornelius received a miracle and he was a Gentile from Italy.

    Paul was especially sent to the Gentiles, and miracles performed through him were for the sake of Gentile and Jew:
    Act 19:10-12 esv This continued for two years, so that all the residents of Asia heard the word of the Lord, both Jews and Greeks.
    (11) And God was doing extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul,
    (12) so that even handkerchiefs or aprons that had touched his skin were carried away to the sick, and their diseases left them and the evil spirits came out of them.

    Also, as Paul addressed the Corinthians, a primarily Gentile church, one founded by Caesar and originally populated with Gentile war veterans, it was plain that the miraculous gifts were in use, albeit being abused.

    “Still later, when the Greeks attempted to break the yoke of Macedon, the Romans became involved and so Corinth was destroyed by the Romans under Lucius Mummius in 146 B.C., only to be reestablished in 46 B.C. by Julius Caesar and called Colonia Laus Julia Corinthus. Caesar populated it with Roman war veterans and freedmen.” (Corinthians, Expositors)

    Also, recall the following which was obviously a miracle done for Gentiles, as following the miracle, the Gentile crowd sought to make them gods, not a very Jewish practice :)
    Act 14:8-13 esv Now at Lystra there was a man sitting who could not use his feet. He was crippled from birth and had never walked.
    (9) He listened to Paul speaking. And Paul, looking intently at him and seeing that he had faith to be made well,
    (10) said in a loud voice, Stand upright on your feet. And he sprang up and began walking.
    (11) And when the crowds saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voices, saying in Lycaonian, The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men!
    (12) Barnabas they called Zeus, and Paul, Hermes, because he was the chief speaker.
    (13) And the priest of Zeus, whose temple was at the entrance to the city, brought oxen and garlands to the gates and wanted to offer sacrifice with the crowds.

    blessings,
    Ken


     
  11. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    I am in the other group JD mentioned when he said
    At least part of this is a sovereignty of God issue. He has used these gifts before and if He wants to He can use them again. Like Bro. Tony alluded to I have heard stories of missionaries speaking in tongues previously unknown to them. I have also seen many cases of miraculous unexplained healing. I have participated in many prayer meetings where we laid hands on the sick and anointed them with oil, praying for healing. Some of them got better. Some did not.

    Many Baptists get their cessionist ideas from I Cor 13:8
    but I also remember that in the very next chapter at I Cor 14:39 the Bible says
    13:8 also says
    All knowledge is not gone so why should we believe all tongues or all prophesy is gone?


    I will not condemn someone who speaks in tongues. But the Biblical model of tongues was always for spreading the gospel and teaching the saints. It was NEVER done without interpretation. Most of what passes for signs and wonders today does not fit the Biblical model. I don't condemn it, neither do I want a part of it.
     
    #11 North Carolina Tentmaker, May 31, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: May 31, 2006
  12. J. Jump

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    Ken,

    I never said that some of these signs happened to Gentiles or were even performed by Gentiles. Both of those cases were true, but in both of those cases the signs were still for the Jews, because Jews are the ones that require a sign. They were done for and by Gentiles in order to make Israel jealous, because they knew those were intended for them, but now there are these Gentiles that are benefiting from what is supposed to be theirs. It happened in the OT as well, and I think it is a pretty safe guess since it happened in the OT and the NT that it will happen again when God starts dealing with the nation of Israel again in the future.
     
  13. J.D.

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    Thanks for the compliment Tony, but I think you didn't thoroughly read my entire post. You said you completely agreed with me, but my last sentence says that I am a complete CESSATIONIST, and I think you are saying that you are a CONTINUATIONIST. Or am I misunderstanding something?
     
  14. Bro Tony

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    Sorry JD,

    What I meant to say was that I agreed completely with you that one could believe in the continuance of the gifts and not agree with the way the pentecostals practice them. I did not mean to say that I agreed that the gifts had ceased. Thanks for letting me clear that up.

    I wanted to leave the impression that there are Baptist who held that the gifts continue through the church age, but we do not believe that the pentecostal are practicing them in a biblical manner.

    Bro Tony
     
  15. Salamander

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    I have had people tell me that there is oceanfront property for salwe in Arizona real cheap
     
  16. Bro Tony

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    Salamander,

    They lied to you, there is no property that is real cheap in Arizona anymore. But what does that have to do with the OP?

    Bro Tony
     
  17. drfuss

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    Since there are all types of Baptist churches, Is there such a thing as a Baptist theology? A wide range of churches with a wide range of beliefs have Baptist in their name.
     
  18. Bro Tony

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    Good question drfuss,

    The Baptist doctrine should only be biblical doctrine. Now there are certainly some Baptist distinctives, I will mention some and others may want to add.

    1. priesthood of the believer
    2. believer's baptism by immersion
    3. local church autonomy
    4. two ordinances--baptism and lord's supper (although there are foot washing Baptist)
    5. Sola Scriptura
    6. Salvation through Christ alone

    Bro Tony
     
  19. FollowMeHome

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    Are you serious?

    I'm have joined that Baptist church out of respect for my husband. I was raised in the Catholic church. I'm really struggling in discerning what the Baptist church teaches. I'm totally confused.

    When I was in college, I dated a Methodist boy. I decided at that time that the Methodist church was not for me because it was so ambiguous, i.e., they made it up as they went.

    Are you telling me that this is the case in the Baptist church? Each Baptist church on everyother corner in Texas follows different theology? :confused:
     
  20. Tom Butler

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    FollowMeHome, maybe I can help clear up any confusion. Nearly all Baptists I'm familiar with subscribe to what have been described as Baptist "distinctives." Among them:

    Salvation by grace through repentance of sin and faith in Jesus Christ as Lord.

    Baptism by immersion of believers only as an outward testimony of an inward conversion, with no saving value in the baptism.

    Baptism and the Lord's Supper as the two church ordinances, with no sacramental value in either one. The Lord's Supper as a memorial only.

    The security of the believer--that is, a believer, once saved, can never lost salvation.

    The Trinity--God in three persons.

    Soul Competency and Priesthood of the believer.

    None of these is unique to Baptists. But taken together, they identify one as Baptist. From there, we're all over the landscape. Just wander through the Baptist Board and see what is being debated and discussed.

    Over the years, I've had pastors who were Calvinist, but most were not. I've had pastors who held to a dispensational eschatology, others were historic pre-millenialists. Even within my own congregation were have pre-tribs, post-tribs, a mid-trib and one or two leaning toward A-mil. Re: the Lord's supper, our congregation is pro-grape juice, but we have a few folks who think it ought to be fermented wine. But our common faith binds us together.

    One other little thing. There is no such thing as THE Baptist Church. One does not join the Baptist Church; one joins A Baptist Church. Baptist churches are independent and autonomous. The Southern Baptist Convention is a group of such autonomous churches who associate together for missionary endeavors and other purposes. Other Baptist congregations do the same thing in different geograhic areas, or associate around specifically-held doctrines or practices.

    A unique feature of such associations is that power and authority flow upward from the churches to the larger group, not downward as in a hierarchy. And individual churches are not bound by the actions of the larger group--except voluntarily. Someone called this Southern Baptist arrangement a "rope of sand."

    That Baptists see so many things differently, yet freely fellowship and cooperate together is testimony to God's grace, and to the intensity with which we embrace those doctrines which bind us. The things which bind us are things worth dying for. Many have over the centuries and many still do today.

    Hope this helps.
     

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