Do we have a documented history?

Discussion in 'Baptist History' started by ptl4evr, Oct 11, 2005.

  1. ptl4evr

    ptl4evr
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    When did the Baptist church start? What are our roots.

    I have some Catholic friends who say their church is the church that jesus founded and they say they have documented proof. I know many other churches can be traced back to the reformation.

    So can anyone tell me when and who began the Baptist church. I have been told we are not prtestants.
     
  2. Kiffen

    Kiffen
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    The present day Roman Catholic Church was a gradual developement over time though the centuries and from the 7-11th century we see it developing close to what it is now and it continued to evolve. Remember the term CATHOLIC as used by the early Church Fathers is not synomous with Roman Catholic. Catholic simply means universal. Roman Catholic claims for succession are weak at best and in none of the early Church councils there was no Pope mentioned.

    The Eastern Orthodox Churches claim their Churches are the oldest and it is true that the Eastern Churches were never under the Roman Pope. They may have a better argument than Rome but so what?

    The Coptic Orthodox Church of Egypt claim their Churches are the oldest and it is true that they were never under the Roman Pope. It was the Church of Alexandria Egypt that was at the forefront of many of the early Battles against Heresy (This will throw your Roman Catholic friends a curve). [​IMG]

    Even many Anglicans and I believe Lutherans make claims of Apostolic succession.

    The Baptist is not Protestant idea is the Landmark Baptist idea that Baptists have their own type of Apostolic Succession through a lineage of Churches. The problem is that we now know that the first Baptists were dissenters from the Church of England and early Baptist confessions reflect English Reformation theology and it also seems they were influenced in many areas such as Baptism, Religious Liberty, the Doctrine of the Church either directly or indirectly by the Anabaptist Reformation.

    True Apostolic Succesion is found in the only thing necessary for true succession and that is the Word of God and are we holding to truth of Apostolic Doctrine. All Churches that preach Jesus Christ and Him crucified, Holy Trinity, Incarnation, Virgin Birth, Faith alone in Him for Salvation and the Bible as the Final authority of Faith (Just to name a few) Can claim Christ as their Head and Founder. Outward succession is nothing without the Truth.

    Mine of course One Opinion and you will hear many more. God Bless you in your research. [​IMG]
     
  3. bruren777

    bruren777
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    Hi ptl4evr,
    Here's what I found, on baptisthistory.org/bapbeginngs.htm

    The General Baptist Church was founded by John Smyth in Amsterdam, Holland in 1608/1609.

    The Separatists began in England in 1600.

    I hope this helps.
    In Him,
    Bruce
     
  4. ptl4evr

    ptl4evr
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    So really haven't all denominations developed over time? The Baptist church didn't even exist until the early 1600's
     
  5. Kiffen

    Kiffen
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    That is correct. That is the problem for any group claiming a literal Apostolic succession of bishops or Churches be they Baptist or Roman Catholic.
     
  6. Mark Osgatharp

    Mark Osgatharp
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    Quote from volume one chapter 15 of John T. Christian's "History of the Baptists":

    As far as I know Christian's research on this point has never even been addressed by the restorationist Baptists, much less refuted.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  7. Plain Old Bill

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    I've read several books on Baptist history and church history and am still in the dark.Seems like everybody is missing something or trying to push an agenda.
     
  8. Plain Old Bill

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    By the way thanks for the link.
     
  9. Bro. James

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    Missing something--to be sure.

    The confusion lies in trying to fit a "square" paradigm through a "round" paradigm, when the correct paradigm is a "triangle". How is that for a convoluted explanation? Makes sense to me.(in this case the square is smaller than the cirle, for those who may realize that a square can be constructed around a circle and vice versa) I think I have just messed up the whole analogy. Anyway---

    New Testament style churches cannot be identified by a name in the yellow pages. Their "faith and practice" is what identifies them.

    That they would be found in every generation is established in Mt. 16,"...the gates of Hades shall not prevail against her." Also Mt. 28:20, Lo, I(Jesus) am with you alway, even unto the end of the age."

    She has a faith and practice: see Jude 6.

    She has a visible mission and practice: see the Book of Acts.

    Why all the confusion? Are we looking in The Book? Or are we looking to the traditions of men?

    Now what?

    Even so, come Lord Jesus.

    Selah,

    Bro. James
    the less
     
  10. Gold Dragon

    Gold Dragon
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  11. ptl4evr

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    What? How does this answer my question?

    As far as the traditions of men go, we need tradition to explain our beleifs. When the bible was written the authors had a certain meaning in mind. As the word of God was handed down through the centuries and underwent translations we need tradition to know what the original authors meant to say. Otherwise you have everyone who reads thge bible come up with their own interpetation under the guise of being led by the Holy Spirit. This is why we have so many denominations today.
     
  12. ptl4evr

    ptl4evr
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    Quote from volume one chapter 15 of John T. Christian's "History of the Baptists":

    As far as I know Christian's research on this point has never even been addressed by the restorationist Baptists, much less refuted.

    Mark Osgatharp
    </font>[/QUOTE]Are you confirming my statement or contradicting it? Check out this link baptisthistory.org
     
  13. ptl4evr

    ptl4evr
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    Thanks for the link. This pretty much answered my question.
     
  14. ptl4evr

    ptl4evr
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    That is correct. That is the problem for any group claiming a literal Apostolic succession of bishops or Churches be they Baptist or Roman Catholic. </font>[/QUOTE]So then are you saying that no denomination can claim apostolic tradition since you agree that all denominations developed over time?
     
  15. R. Charles Blair

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    Did NT churches immerse? Generally agreed, even by the Catholic Encyclopedia.

    Did NT churches immerse believers? Generally agreed, though some Presbyterians are "doubters."

    Did NT churches demand faith before immersion? Generally agreed, with exception as noted.

    Did NT churches teach "security of the believer," based in salvation by grace through a repentant faith? Not so generally agreed, but widely enough accepted to make a strong case. (Here the Presybterians are our allies!)

    Did NT churches operate "independently," yet with links of doctrine and spiritual accord, without any formal ecclesiastical organization "over" them? See Mosheim's Church History (Lutheran) for thorough documentation of this point.

    Have there been autonomous, self-governing (under Christ)local, visible congregations of immersed believers, however few, however scattered, however differing among themselves in incidentals, in every age of Christian history? Most historians would agree, even while many of them spend lots of time pointing out the various differences among such churches, and between them and our churches.

    Were such congregations persecuted by the state religion in the "Dark Ages"? Generally agreed.

    To the extent that we have a succession (and I'm with Mark O. on JTChristian's superb work, which I've used in teaching Baptist history for years), it is of necessity among the persecuted, despised congregations of immersed believers (and maybe a few "sprinkling Anabaptists" in the 1500's, though many of them did immerse). Our succession as promised by Jesus in Mt. 16:18 and 28:18-20, and by the Holy Spirit in Eph. 3:20-21, cannot be among those persecuting "official" religious groups living in an incestuous relationship with pagan government after Constantine. Whether or not we can trace it, by faith we affirm that Jesus made no mistake when He promised it. The persecutors taught "salvation by works," starting with infant "baptism" and leading to "sacraments"
    of various sorts, moving even from immersion to sprinkling at the Council of Ravenna, 13th cent.

    Whether all the persecuted groups were "alike" is irrelevant; among them we find some like the NT, and to the extent that we are like the NT doctrine we are NT churches. The word "Baptist" came into general use in the early 17th cent., but as Mark has pointed out, it is largely interchangable with "Anabaptist," and the name is not the primary issue; the doctrine comes first.
    Ours is based squarely in the NT, as we have been led (we believe by the Spirit of God) to believe and begin to understand it.

    Wishing you all His best - Charles - Ro. 8:28
     
  16. Mark Osgatharp

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    I was contradicting your statement. The quote I gave proves there were "Baptists" - called by that name - in England in 1569.

    Mark Osgatharp
     
  17. Bro. James

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    "The Baptist Church" is a misnomer. Such an entity does not exist--has never existed. In fact this "universal" church idea has been repudiated by true NT churches in every generation.

    Despite the false premise, this thread has correctly pointed out that the Jesus promised to abide with His churches through the age even through today--He has kept His promise.

    There is a secular history of the churches Jesus preserved--it is written with the blood of the martyrs in the past nearly two thousand years. One can follow this trail starting with the beheading of John the Baptist, the Crucifixion of Jesus, and the deaths of the Apostles. Jesus' churches were persecuted to the death in every generation some more than others.

    Where are the records? In the annals of the persecutors. Read books like: "History of the Inquisitions"--find out what the ones who died believed--many of them were the true followers of "the Faith, once for all delivered to the saints", Jude 6.

    It is not about a name--it is about a faith and practice through even today--by the grace, mercy and longsuffering of the Lord Jesus Christ.

    Another historical observation: True Baptistic faith and practice predate Martin Luther, etal, by about 1500 years. So, the statement: "Baptists were not born of the Protestant Reformation" is based on factual data.

    The basic problem with all of this is that if the real apostates came out of Italy and were reformed in Germany, a sizeable portion of present-day Christendom is without authority. This is a notion which will not stand in the "hallowed" halls of the Vatican, Constantinople, Wittenburg, Canterbury and centers of religious control.

    Surprisingly, the interpretation of one scripture answers the question. Who Jesus gave authority to in Mt. 16:18 is the crux. If to Peter, then the "Holy See" is the only authorized "Church"--all others are without authority. If the authority is given to the true churches in every generation, then Rome(and Constantinople) along with all of their daughters are without authority.

    Is it not easy to see why people who believe such "heresy" were put to the sword and the fire? Thank God for the true martyrs. Let us not forget them and why they died.

    Selah,

    Bro. James
     
  18. mioque

    mioque
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    "Even many Anglicans and I believe Lutherans make claims of Apostolic succession. "
    "
    Indeed. Ofcourse Apostolic succession even if true is mostly a vanity thing.
    I mean, Ölle Smörrebröd who is a modern day Lutheran bishop in Sweden can trace back a line of Lutheran bishops on the same spot he has his bishophoric all the way untill they become Roman Catholic Swedish bishops. Those RC Swedish bishops can be traced back untill the first missionary Catholic bishop was established overthere in Sweden. The man who arranged that was also a bishop and his predecessors can be traced back etc.
    Eventually you might end up at Papias (who apparently was the student of a genuine apostle) or something.
    Nice, does that proof that Ölle teaches the proper doctrine? Ofcourse not.
     
  19. Bro. James

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    Apostolic succession--a vanity thing--agreed.

    It continues to delude millions of "religious" folk around the globe.

    The point about who has the authority given in Mt.16 is pivotal; yet not many seem willing to discuss the issue.

    Authority usurped is no authority at all--kind of like a purse filled with iron pyrite--it looks very good, but is basically worthless.

    Selah,

    Bro. James,
    the less
     
  20. mioque

    mioque
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    John T. Christian ;)
    "At best the distinction between the names Baptists and Anabaptists is technical;"
    "
    Just watch theologians from both traditions tearing into eachother and see if you are still right.

    "The state of religion many ways weakened by boldness to the true service of God; by increase of the number and courage of the Baptists"
    "
    That other group the Ana-Baptists was around by 1569 and Cecil a politician not an expert in comparative religion could easily have dropped a couple of letters from their name by mistake. That would leave the question why he would express worry about what must have been a tiny faction, but there is the whole Münster bussiness.
    This is all exiting speculation ofcourse. For a much more prosaic explanation...
    I've read several times that the term baptists/ana-baptist was used as a synonim for heretic.
     

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