Historical Precedence for Ordination Practices

Discussion in 'Baptist History' started by Frogman, Nov 20, 2005.

  1. Frogman

    Frogman
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    Dear Brethren,
    Does anyone know of the historical sources for the practice among Old Particular Baptists that a call to a particular pastorate equalled local ordination?

    I am asking this for personal reasons as well as historical perspective.

    Bro. Dallas [​IMG]
     
  2. Frogman

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    Bump.

    I am interested in this because some landmarkers are arguing I have no authority to pursue a radio ministry.

    I was ordained by the Sovereign Grace Baptist church in Cookeville we were involved in its organization last August (04). They called me as pastor during the organization meeting and voted to have that call be my ordination during the same meeting.

    With representatives of three Baptist churches and two preaching brethren, present, there was no opposition at the time.

    Just wandering about the historical practice of this, one of the preachers present did cite an historic practice of this type among Old English Baptists.

    Despite the landmark shrieks of pain for the sounds of their shattering chain links and the deaths of many of their mothers, I am resolved to pursue this radio ministry.

    I formally presented it to Unity Baptist this morning, gave them opportunity to speak against it, witnessed no movement;

    The door has been opened of the Lord and it is time that I do move...inmho.

    I said as much to the body this morning so you guys don't think I am speaking boldly out of school.

    Any ideas on historical perspectives?

    Bro. Dallas
     
  3. OleSchoolBaptist

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    Check out the 1689 Confession of Faith.

    Besides why care what these men say concerning a ministry your church is pursuing.
     
  4. rsr

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    From the London Baptist Confession (1646):

    (Emphasis added)

    From the Philadelphia Baptist Confession (1742):

    The Separate Baptists on the frontier developed their own ordination requirements:

    — Bill Leonard in Baptists in Appalachia, Baptist History and Heritage, Summer-Fall, 2002

    Some Baptists have taken a dim view of the entire proposition of ordination. An example is Charles H. Spurgeon:

    — Sword and Trowel Volume 4, 1874, pages 111-117

    SPURGEON ON ORDINATION AND RELIGIOUS TITLES
     
  5. rlvaughn

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    Bro. Dallas, this doesn't really add anything, but I am confused as to what they are objecting. Is it because the ordination was by a local church only, with no call to sister churches to participate; or is it because there was no laying on of hands or special ceremony; or is it something else?
     
  6. Frogman

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    Dear Brother Vaughn,
    The church in Cookeville did this during their organizational meeting.

    The group enjoyed the blessing and presence of members of two sister churches and blessings of a third.

    One Church is Raleigh Springs Baptist in Memphis, do you know that body and its pastor Brother Duplechain?

    During the meeting, Brother Ray Angus moderated, the original missionary to this group but having been called to pastor by Mt. Vernon MB in Fayetteville, AR (so that makes four churches) the other two are pastored by Brother Steve Wilkinson?? I am not certain of this brother's name, but the churches are located in NC.

    I will try to find the statement read to call the meeting to order, it included in it the four churches extending a hand.

    After the church was recognized as a body; Brother Ray brought the issue to the floor concerning who the church desired to call as pastor. They indicated myself. He then asked the process of ordination, the church indicated by local authority of call with no future formal meeting planned.

    That was in August, in October I was called to Unity in Paron.

    Unity, I guess is just not recognizing the local authority ordination. Let me stress this is not due to our being in disfellowship with Cookeville, we are not.

    Unity is accustomed to the formal meetings and laying on of hands, etc.

    BTW, after the meeting brother Duplechain preached the charge to the church and to its pastor, me.

    Brother Angus also spoke, then I spoke briefly.

    Bro. Dallas
     
  7. Frogman

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    Dear OleSchoolBaptist,
    Thanks for the reference.

    I am not too concerned about what these men are saying. I have already answered them that neither themselves nor any other body called me into the ministry.

    The stricter landmark view, however is capable of causing me trouble. except the fact that I have completely discussed this ministry with Unity and they have not opposed it.

    I am satisfied the landmark position, if really in support of local authority (autonomy of the local assembly) will have no position.

    Bro. Dallas
     
  8. rlvaughn

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    Bro. Dallas, thanks for the explanation. I know of some of the men you mention, but do not know any of them personally. As far as historical precedent, I think it is there. But as far as advice, there will always be a fight for you to fight since you were not ordained in the standard way. Is that a battle you want to fight from now on?

    I personally believe in following the example of laying-on-of-hands. But I am reminded of how ordinations were conducted around here among the missionary Baptists of the ABA in the 1970s & 1980s. They followed what is probably fairly standard procedure for missionary Baptists in the south, calling a council and electing a moderator, clerk, person to give the charge, etc. But someone would always make a point, after the church voted to ordain the person, to say that at that point the person was ordained. Nevertheless, for whatever reason, they were never willing to follow their belief to its logical conclusion - that a church should simply vote on the candidate and consider him ordained.
     
  9. Frogman

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    Dear Brethren,
    thanks for all your help and references. This is certainly not a fight I want to have to continue in each time I may move.

    On the other hand,knowing who called me into the ministry, it is difficult to disagree with Spurgeon's statment above.

    Did he ever receive ordination?
    May God bless,
    Bro. Dallas
     
  10. rsr

    rsr
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    No, he didn't.
     
  11. Frogman

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    Didn't think so.
     
  12. canadyjd

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    Yes, he did.

    Spurgeon: A new biography by Arnold Dallimore. Banner of Truth Trust. 1999.

    p.47.

    Spurgeon accepted the call to the New Park Street church, London, at the age of 19. The deacons requested he have an ordination service.

    "Spurgeon told them he did not believe this was a scriptural practice and that he did not need it to validate his ministry....Nevertheless, he was willing to go through with the ceremony if the church thought it necessary. And although it would do him no harm neither would it do him any good. And there the matter rested."

    peace to you [​IMG]
     
  13. Squire Robertsson

    Squire Robertsson
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    Lo many moons ago, my church admin teacher required us preacher boys to put together the start of out office files. One of the items required for the project was five church constitutions. Of the five, one church had an interesting ordination clause:
    Methinks, the writer(s) of this clause took the late Dr. Richard Weeks' polity classes much too seriously. Also, this church was located in southern Wisconsin, not exactly Primitive/Missionary/Landmark territory.
    It has been my experience that churches rely on the principle of reciprocity when dealing with ordinations.
    Now for my rabbinical opinion, considering the church in which you serve and hold membership</font>
    • accepts your previous ordination.</font>
    • approves your radio ministry. (It is a "ministry of the local church", isn't ?)</font>
    You and your church are on solid ground. However, there are some brethren who would like to turn associations into presbyteries. Oh, well.
     
  14. rsr

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  15. canadyjd

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    Perhaps you are correct. Do you have any sources that specifically say he was not ordained?

    peace to you [​IMG]
     
  16. Frogman

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    I wonder what Mr. Dallimore's sources are?

    I have read of Spurgeon's statement concerning ordination and have never read that he received the ordination at the hands of men.

    Bro. Dallas
     
  17. rsr

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    Christian History & Biography online attests to it, and there are other sources whose veracity I can't testify to. However, I have never seen it argued that he was ordained.

    He commented more than once upon ordination, never with approbation.

    In Our Gifts and How to Use Them (from 1872, 28 years after accepting the call to pastor New Park Street Chapel), Spurgeon says, using 2 Timothy 1:6 as his text:

    [ November 22, 2005, 11:25 PM: Message edited by: rsr ]
     
  18. rsr

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    I think Dallimore's passage means that the church wanted to ordain Spurgeon, but he declined on principle, though he would, if necessary, go through the ritual, and the matter was therefore dropped.

    This is from a letter he wrote shortly after he was informed New Park Street Chapel wanted him to become pastor:


     
  19. rsr

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    Pardon for overlooking my copy of Leon McBeth, where he writes about 19th-century English Baptists:

    — Leon McBeth, The Baptist Heritage, Broadman Press, 1987, pp 515-516
     
  20. Frogman

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    As I understood it when reading of Spurgeon's call to the New Park Street Chapel, he consented to go only on a three month trial, to be renewed every quarter.

    My memory may be in error on that, but I think that I remember reading that of his decision to go there was under that condition.

    or something similar.

    Bro. Dallas
     

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