Closed Baptism

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Salty, Jan 18, 2012.

  1. Salty

    Salty
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    Many on this board believe in closed communion. Specifically, a person should not partake unless he is a member of that individual local church.

    (NOTE: this thread is not a debate whether communion should be closed or not)

    I got thinking about this. If a church believes that the ordinance of communion should only be for members of that local church - than should the same go for baptism?

    Another words - should a person be re-baptized when joining a different Baptist church?

    Does your church re-baptize for this stated reason. If not, would that be inconsistent - ie closed communion / open baptism?

    I would like to emphasis that I am not trying to make light of the doctrine of either ordinance

    Sounds like this could be an interesting discussion - if we keep it in serious manner.
     
  2. mont974x4

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    There are not many cases where a local pastor would be baptizing someone not from his church. The only real exception I can think of would be chaplains in the military for special circumstances.

    I do not believe anyone needs to be re-baptized if they have been baptized in a church that is similar to yours. For example, if a Roman Catholic that gets saved then I would dunk him. If someone from another protestant church joined my church then I would see no need to redunk him.

    I also encourage parents to baptize their kids. I have also asked close friends who may have played a huge role in someones salvation to perform the rite.


    Oh, and I practice open Communion. 1 Cor 11 says to examine yourself, not submit to an examination by an elder or deacon.
     
  3. Tom Butler

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    Seems to me that some folks here on the BB are from churches which baptize every new member, regardless if they have been baptized before, even by another Baptist church. Maybe one of them can explain that practice.

    Our church is 125 years old and from the beginning has accepted as valid the baptism of other churches of like faith and order. In 99.9% of the cases, those churches are Baptist churches. In one case a couple sought membership from a non-Baptist church. They brought us the doctrinal statement, which passed muster; and their ecclesiology was practically the same as ours. We accepted as valid that church's baptism.

    In the past we have required re-baptism of those who sought membership from some Baptist churches, such as General Baptist and Free Will Baptist.

    We would require re-baptism of the following:
    Those not of like faith and order
    Those who practice sprinkling or pouring.
    Those who hold to the ordinances as sacraments
    Those who believe one can lose his salvation.
    Those who hold to baptismal regeneration.

    I use the term re-baptize, but actually, their first baptism would not be considered baptism. So ours would actually be their first scriptural baptism.
     
  4. convicted1

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    The words from the Ray Stevens' song "Mississippi Squirrel Revival" come to mind; "And we all got re-baptized, whether we needed it or not." :laugh:


    I like how they handled that scenario. They looked at those members, and their beliefs, and not their denomination. Not everyone in any given denomination adheres to everything that denomination believes. That could have been why they sought fellowship with y'all, when they did.


    :confused: So, GB's and FWB's baptisms aren't valid? What if they baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost/Spirit? :confused:


    I am in complete agreement with two of those, #2 and #5. The others are a matter of opinion, and I feel, they should not be a hinderence to membership. But that is me, and your church has every right to do what you feel led to do. We, as baptists, agree that the water adds nothing to our salvation, but some baptists put a lot of emphasis on it when you take in an "alien" member.



    If they have been baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost/Spirit, thats the only one that counts. Its to answer a good conscience to God, and not for the putting away the filth of the flesh. We don't have to answer the conscience over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, you get the picture.

    If I went somewhere for a while, and I felt led to take membership there, and they wanted me to be re-baptized, I say "toodle-loo" and go somewhere else. I answered the good conscience to God on June 10th, 2007.


    Like I stated Brother Tom, your church has every right to do things your way, and its nobody else's business. :love2:
     
  5. Tom Butler

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  6. TCassidy

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    We only baptize members. Those candidates who have given testimony of faith in Christ as their Savior. They understand that, by being baptized, they are uniting with our local assembly in full membership.

    The idea that practicing closed communion would logically demand rebaptizing every member transferring from another church is pretty silly. We don't demand they take our communion 4 times for every year they were a member of another baptist church!
     
  7. DaChaser1

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    Wouldn't ones viewpoint concerning cal/Arm sotierology be in a different class than the others listed here by you?

    We practice the same , except that do allow for either view to be held in the membership ranks, though leadership holds to more DoG position!
     
  8. Tom Butler

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    Ones views on Calvinism/non-Cal are not a test of fellowship in our church. The pastor is not a Calvinist; at least three deacons are; the others are not.

    And yes, ones views on DoG are different from the ones I listed. Individual churches may make them a test of fellowship. Ours does not.
     
  9. convicted1

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    Ole Ray could sing some funny songs. My favorite one, hands down, is "The Blue Cyclone".



    That's a good practice, even if a church wouldn't require re-baptism. I am for taking them in, provided they have came for a while. We shouldn't have a stranger prance in, and at the end of the meeting, take them in w/o anyone knowing them. I think that there should be a "feeling out" process, for say, six months. At the end of those six months, if both the church and prospective member are satisfied with each other, then take them in.

    You have a good point, there. But, they believe in a completely different doctrine altogether. They have their own "denominational" bibles, to boot. Not so with other denominations.



    How would this disqualify their baptism as proper? :confused: The water baptism doesn't add one cubit to anyone's salvation, but to take membership in another church you must go through the water again? Well, that's pushing the theological envelope, if you ask me. There was a dear old Brother who used to come around us(he passed away about a year to year and a half ago), and he preached with us quite a few times. Let me tell you, he was a preaching man!! He belonged to the FWB's, and if he would have asked to take membership at my church, I would have been ashamed to ask him to be re-baptized, after feeling his preaching and witness. I have no worries about his soul. He has went to be with the Lord. FTR, for us to have taken him in, we would have had to re-baptized him....we don't like it, but that's the rules of the association.



    To quote Dave Hester from "Storage Wars", "Yuuuuuup"!!! :laugh:


    I will now leave you alone, so that someone may be able to answer your question. I just wasnted to respond to this post.
     
    #9 convicted1, Jan 20, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 20, 2012
  10. DaChaser1

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    We have the opposite status here in My church!
    Pastor is an "Evangelical Arminianist" while most Elders follow the DoG, and that both views held in the congregation!
     
  11. Tom Butler

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    I agree that there should be some time to pass. At the very least, there should be some conversations with the pastor and the stranger.

    Now, we're getting to the question of the proper administrator of baptism. You have disqualified JWs and Mormons as true New Testament churches because of their doctrines. It also raises the question, what error disqualifies a group from being a NT church. Would a belief that one can lose his salvation be one? That's what General Baptists and Freewill Baptists believe.

    It goes back to this. I would vote to baptize someone of like faith and order, even if not known as Baptist. GBs and FWBs are of similar but not like faith, thus not proper administrators.

    There's a lot of discussion over mode (immersion, sprinkling) and design (picture of the gospel) and the subject (a believer), but we don't talk much about the administrator.

    I think that's because we're reluctant to say that some faith groups are not true NT churches. That's why I raised the question, what beliefs and practices disqualify. That's for another thread, I think.
     
  12. OldRegular

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    convicted1

    Do you mean to say that the Old Regular Baptists do not baptize those coming from another denomination, Baptist or not?

    If I felt the need to join a Church other than Southern Baptists and they wanted to Baptize me again I would say go ahead!
     
  13. gb93433

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    Years ago my wife and I joined a large Baptist church which only accepted those who were baptized in a Baptist church. We did not know that until I was taking a class at the seminary and someone made that known. I was baptized by a Baptist pastor in a non-denominational church. My wife was baptized in the Pacific Ocean by a Evangelical Free Church of America pastor. It was good for a laugh because we had moved our membership from a Baptist church in the same denomination.
     
  14. Tom Butler

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    I looked at the doctrinal statement of the E-Free Church of America, and found it generally to be sound. Side issues are another story. One critic said the E-Free church dabbles in faith healing and some New Agey stuff.

    Can you fill us in about that ?

    Based on the doctrinal statement I read, I could accept E-Free folks as members of my church.
    But I'd need to know more about the other stuff.
     
    #14 Tom Butler, Jan 21, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 21, 2012
  15. gb93433

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    I do not know of any EFCA churches that deal in New Age etc. I do not trust what anyone says until I hear it for myself. Several months ago a man told some us that the local Orthodox pastor is not a believer. So I asked the pastor and I came to the conclusion that he certainly is without any question. When I started asking people if the man who said that is a Christian I could not find one person who could give me an affirmative answer except to say they think so but were not sure.

    However I pastored a SBC church that invited the Mormon bishop to come and teach once a year. That happened until I put a stop to it. When I contacted the local association, state level, and a former SBC president (who openly claims to believe the Bible) about the issue not one of them did anything to contact the church or take any action. The former president suggested that I resign. The pastor they have now is one of those kind who is buying time until he retires.

    My point was that one had to have been baptized in a Baptized chruch and we were not. We became members by transferring our membership from another church in the same denomination but did not subscribe to the same practices. Nobody in the church checked to see if we were ever baptized in a Baptist Church.
     
  16. tinytim

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    Why do we humans complicate things?

    Why are there more obstacles placed in front of people to get into a membership of a local church than there are to get into Heaven...

    Baptism is simple...
    A person gets saved.. dunk em!...
    End of story...


    And we wonder why today's generation is wanting to have nothing to do with church membership...
    It's because Us Pharisees have created so many hoops people have to jump through... especially since church membership is not even spoken of in the BIBLE!
     
    #16 tinytim, Jan 22, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 22, 2012
  17. Martin Marprelate

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    I'm with Tiny Tim.
    If we Baptists insist on rebaptizing people who have already been baptized according to Scripture, then we ahave become a cult.

    I was baptized in a Plymouth Brethren assembly by immersion on my profession of Christ. If anyone wants me to do it again, he can go and boil his head (in love, of course! :laugh:).

    Those who have been 'baptized' as infants and those baptized by non-Trinitarian cults are a different matter, of course.

    Steve
     
  18. Salty

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    This thread has gotten way off the OP

    Basically, what I am saying is that if a church believes in closed communion -(ie only members of that local church may participate) then it is only logical for them to require an individual to be baptized again- even if coming from a church of like faith.

    Agree or disagree - and reason for that answer?
     
  19. quantumfaith

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    Salty, what do you think is the reason that churches with closed communion and /or baptisms do so? Is it because they feel more affirmed that those within their ranks are more "known" with regard to the meaning of such obligations of the church? Does not the "local body" also simply rely on the personal testimony of even its "members" with regard to this?

    My position is that both should be open, each believer should examine themselves and decide if they feel led and "qualified" as to their obedience.
     
  20. Oldtimer

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    Salty, I agree with your premise. Two Baptist Ordinances

    http://www.sbc.net/bfm/bfm2000.asp

    http://www.allaboutbaptists.com/distinctives_Two_Ordinances.html

    Shouldn't both of the ordiances be handled the same within an individual congregation of believers?

    That said, I agree with quantumfaith
    I was sprinkled as a teenager when I joined the church of another denomination. Transferred my membership to a local Baptist church via letter. Accepted without the requirement of going through an immersion baptism nor pressure applied to do so anyway.

    Within a short period of time my conviction grew to the point of giving testimony before the church that I desired to be baptised by immersion. My profession of faith wouldn't be complete until my witness to/for Him was complete.

    If I had been required to be baptised by immersion for membership, it would have been "going through the motions". Today, I'm thankful I was allowed to come to that decision through the Holy Spirit rather than a set of rules and regulations.
     

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