Books on Baptist History

Discussion in 'Baptist History' started by CarpentersApprentice, Jan 22, 2007.

  1. CarpentersApprentice

    CarpentersApprentice
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    The Baptist Heritage by H. Leon McBeth
    and
    A History of the Baptists by Robert G. Torbet

    I had these recommended to me as good books on Baptist history. Would you agree or disagree? Why?

    Any other recommendations on books currently in print about Baptist history?

    CA
     
  2. rsr

    rsr
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    I would say they are both good one-volume surveys. As such, they share the strengths and weaknesses of that format, which is being able to cover a lot of material but being unable to focus at length on subjects.

    I am more familiar with McBeth's work (which I use as a reference) than Torbets, which I have read and occasionally refer to. While attempting to deal with Baptist history generally, McBeth does not have the space to deal with a number of issues in depth. For example, European Baptists and less-common Baptist traditions in the United States are not covered at length.

    McBeth wrote from a Southern Baptist perspective, Torbet from the ABC-USA perspective. Torbet's work is a bit more dated than McBeth's, and McBeth also compiled a separate volume of his source material, which makes for interesting reading.

    Bill J. Leonard has recently published Baptist Ways: A History. I have not read it yet, but it's on my list.
     
  3. Pastor_Bob

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    James Beller has written several good books dealing with Baptist History,

    America in Crimson Red
    The Collegiate Baptist History Workbook
    The Coming Destruction of the Baptist People

    are three that I have personally read.
     
  4. paidagogos

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    James R. Beller

    More along this same line, including articles by Beller, can be found at the following links:
    http://www.baptistchristianworldview.com/
    http://www.21tnt.com/archive_for_articles/campmeeting.htm
    http://www.21tnt.com/fbhs/
    http://www.21tnt.com/
     
  5. CarpentersApprentice

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    Thanks for the insights on Torbet and McBeth. Are you aware if the Leonard book is used by any particular Baptist seminaries or colleges?

    CA
     
  6. CarpentersApprentice

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    Is James Beller's work used as an authoritative source by any accredited seminaries of the major Baptist denominations (Southern Baptist, National Baptist, National Missionary Baptist, Progressive National Baptist, American Baptist, or Baptist Bible Fellowship International)?

    CA
     
  7. paidagogos

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    James R. Beller, Baptist historian

    Nope, probably not. However, some independent Baptist Bible colleges do.
     
  8. rsr

    rsr
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    I can't say for sure, but I wouldn't be surprised. It was commissioned by the American Baptist Historical Society (to replace Torbet's work). Leonard is dean of the divinity school at Wake Forest (where I suppose it is in use), and it received good reviews from Walter Shurden, executive director of the Center for Baptist Studies at Mercer (which uses some of Leonard's work in its Certificate in Baptist Studies program.)
     
  9. Squire Robertsson

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    Save for a BBFI school why should I care about the others? FYI, Maranatha is (and I think the same is true of Pillsbury\Central) an accredited school. They were founded by men of the Historic Northern Baptist tradition.
     
  10. Baptist Bible Believer

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    I would add the two volume "History of the Baptists" by Thomas Armitage (it was our textbook at BBC, Springfield).

    Also, Billy Vick Bartlett (G.B. Vick's grandson) wrote a small softcover book on the history of the BBFI, and W. E. Dowell also wrote one. You should be able to order both books through BBFI or the college bookstore.

    Have you considered the book, "Fundamentalism in America" by George W. Dollar?
     
  11. CarpentersApprentice

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    Baptist Ways: A History by Bill J. Leonard
    Paperback: 456 pages
    Publisher: Judson Press (June 2003)
    ISBN-10: 0817012311

    Thanks. I'll look into it.

    CA
     
  12. CarpentersApprentice

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    Which ones?
     
  13. CarpentersApprentice

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    BBB,

    I was really looking for works about the broad scope of baptist history by current authors rather than reprints of people from an earlier time, or on specific denominations. (Although, as I looked at my original post that was not clear. And I know that most Baptist authors are part of a specific denomination.)

    Sorry about the misqueue. And I'll check out BBFI on the web.

    CA
     
  14. thjplgvp

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    Just curious Carpenter's A

    Why would you be looking for current writers for Baptist History? It would seem you would be well served to read from that which is closest to the history rather than from that which is the furthest away.

    Especially since you run the risk of the newer stuff being tainted by particular schools of theology.

    thjplgvp
     
  15. paidagogos

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    Crown (Bob Dalton, who teaches Baptist history, is friends with Beller) for certain and probably Ambassador Baptist College. I suspect a number of others do too but I am not certain.
     
  16. rsr

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    Any Baptist history, whether old or new, can be tainted by particular schools of theology or, more likely, the viewpoints of the age in which they are written.

    There is indeed value in reading the old histories, especially when they are providing information on contemporaneous events. Part of the advantage of reading older histories is that the assumptions that underly the works are obvious in a way that was not evident earlier.

    As C.S. Lewis said:

    The older historians can make some fascinating reading. (For example, Thomas Armitage in A History of the Baptists spends an entire chapter (17) outlining the efforts of American Baptists in the mid-1800s to support a new translation of the Bible into English.

    Unfortunately, a number of older Baptist historians ventured far from the safety of the contemporaneous to the dangers of speculation (and confusing speculation with proof.)

    Modern writers have access to the previous histories, as well as other information, and the new histories are written from a perspective that knows how the old debates turned out. They deserve to be read.
     
    #16 rsr, Jan 24, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 25, 2007
  17. CarpentersApprentice

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    What he said. Ditto. CA
     
  18. Eagle

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    What think ye learned gents of the two-volume, The History of the Christian Church, by William Jones, originally published, 1826?
     
  19. thjplgvp

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    Actually they were published originally in 1812 in London by printer W. Myers.

    From what I know of the books they would be a great addition to any library. If you have them are you looking to sell them? If so send me a P.M.

    thjplgvp
     
  20. paidagogos

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    Fyi

    As far as I can tell, David Cloud has published this book on the Internet at http://www.wayoflife.org/articles/jones00.htm
     

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