How far back can we trace Baptist history?

Discussion in 'Baptist History' started by Bro.Bill, Aug 20, 2004.

  1. Bro.Bill

    Bro.Bill
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    I'm hoping to get verifiable information from reputable church historians. Between the Landmark movement and the reformation historians there must be some verifiable documentary information.
     
  2. dean198

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    General Baptist history can be traced back to the congregation of Helwys in 1612. Particular Baptist history to the congregation of Spilsbury. Even if there could be found an anabaptist connection, the anabaptists themselves originated in 1525 in Zurich.
     
  3. rsr

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  4. Squire Robertsson

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    Further back than some would think, but not as far back as some would like.
     
  5. Ben W

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    In my own study of church history, I think it is clear that the Baptist Church came out of the Church of England (Episcopal in the US). It seems that the Methodists later had there same heritage there.
     
  6. Bob Rogers

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    The problem Landmarkists have is trying to put all Baptists into a single group. That means combining the Baptist and Brethren churches into a single history. There may be doctrinal similarities; but their historical backgrounds are different.

    Records from the Glastonbury Abby ruins record a structure on those grounds since 166 AD. A list of abbots traces back to 601 AD.

    It`s listed on the wall of the Hereford Cathedral, that a bishopric was established there in 636; but the Welsh torched it.

    The Welsh are either Baptist or they go to Chapel. Chapel is basicly Baptist.

    Bob

    [ August 23, 2004, 12:18 PM: Message edited by: Bob Rogers ]
     
  7. Jim1999

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    I am essentially a Landmarkist. I differ slightly with classic landmarkism in the sense that I argue from the New Testament record. If we claim baptist polity and practice is clearly taught in the New Testament, and we as baptists do make this claim, where did these churches go as history progressed?

    Just as New Testament churches were not pure in doctrine (Paul corrected many errors in the churches) so churches down through history added or subtracted doctrines, but the principles remained the same.

    The baptists did not stem from Anglicanism. There were chapels in existence long before Smyth et al. The chief question at the time was Arminianism vs Calvinism, but they were all essential baptist. Welsh chapels sent missionaries into the Midlands of England in response to request by existing chapels in the Midlands. Hardly stemming from Anglicanism.

    Why do we claim to be New Testament churches if the New Testament does not clearly teach the principles, polity and practice that we hold so dearly and call baptistic?

    Cheers, and happy research,

    Jim
     
  8. Bob Rogers

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    Jim:

    Paul had to address some pegan practices being dragged into the Church. Many of Paul`s sermons would be fitting today. Paul addressed the issue of following preachers and placing value on education to the Corinthians. That`s appropriate today. As Baptists, we try to keep our doctrinal beliefs consistant with the Bible.

    We`ve been taught, that the "Dark Ages" resulted from the military decline of the Roman Empire. Scientific evidance has been found to prove, that a cataclysm took place (sorry uniformitarians). The cataclysm resulted in crop failures and caused civilization to decline into barbarism. In the 6th century, Britain was the only bastion of Christianity in Europe. Catholic sources have credited Britain with saving Christianity. Other Christian elements existed in North Africa and Armenia. If elements existed in Italy`s Waldensian Valley, they were isolated and represented little (or no) impact on Europe.

    (St)Patrick has been connected to Glastonbury. Columkille represented a considerable influence. Little is known about (St) David, except he was in Wales about 545 AD.

    Historical records (mostly Catholic) trace the Cathari through the Balkins. That`s where the history of the German Baptists traces.

    When Titus destroyed Jerusalem, the surviving remnant escaped accross North Africa to Spain. Spanish Jews are called Sephardi. Legends say, that Joseph of Arimethia continued from Spain to Glastonbury. The evidance of a direct connection between the Jerusalem Church and the establishment of a Church at Glastonbury has been lost in legend.

    One of our biggest problems (as Baptists) is allowing schools to draw us into Protestant methods and philosophies. Baptist ministerial students have gone to Non-Baptist schools. Bob Jones University holds no official denominational status; but Dr. Bob Jones Sr. was a Methodist. Baptist ministerial students being taught by Methodists? (I`m completely aware he was extremely well respected) How can we expect to keep our churches true to sound doctrine, if our preachers are taught by Non-Baptists?

    Bob
     
  9. Jim1999

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    Thanks Bob,

    Whilst I did attend two schools that were not baptist, I did attend two baptist seminaries for my essential theology and baptist history.

    I am all for baptist schools for baptist preachers, and believe it should be mandatory to attend at least one before ordination.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  10. dean198

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    I believe that the Baptists came out of Separatism, but I am not opposed to the basic landmark idea, if it can be shown to have basis in reality. I would like to know your sources, if possible, that Baptists originated with pre-Reformation Welseh Baptists. The particular Baptists originated in London with the congregation of Kiffin. The Welsh Baptists were planted by them, as far as I am aware.
    Dean
     
  11. Jim1999

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  12. Bro.Bill

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    Thanks so far gentleman. I'm looking for all the resource materials I can find.
     
  13. dean198

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    Thanks Jim, yes I had read it, and I have been keeping an eye out for the book, but I have not been able to get hold of a copy yet. This is all very interesting, and I certainly wish to look further into the Welsh Baptists.

    Dean
     
  14. Jim1999

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    Dean,

    Sorry for this late response. I doubt very much if you will ever find the book as it is written in Welsh, and as far as I know, not available in English.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  15. Bro.Bill

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    Yes ,I too, like others would like to be able to go with the Landmark idea if there could be found some valid documentation.I guess that is what I'm hopeing to find here.
     
  16. Jim1999

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    Bro. Bill,
    I think the secret to my Landmarkist position, is moderation. I argue from the NT view of the church, believe that it was sustained down through the ages, and came to its own with the English baptists. If someone wants me to prove it, I can't. Simply as that. I just believe it, but don't invent a cult about it.

    Cheers, and happy hunting,

    Jim
     
  17. R. Charles Blair

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    J. Davis on the Baptists of Wales is available in English - my copy is loaned out, and I can't give you publisher's address of the top of my head, but maybe someone else can.

    One of the best works to show our principles in all the early centuries is John Laurence Mosheim, "An Ecclesiastical History, Ancient and Modern." Mosheim, a Lutheran, documents century by century various groups and their views, and he makes a stronger case for finding our ideas all through the "Dark Ages" than do many Baptists! All the better because he is not trying to show any "Baptist succession." We don't need evidence of direct ancestry any more than we need genealogy to prove our descent from Adam - intersting to study but not essential to our existence. But I still think it is better for a child to have a regular home with parents than otherwise, and for a church to have linkage with some pre-existing church or group of churches to give doctrinal stabliity. Best - Charles Blair - Ro. 8:28
     
  18. Bro.Bill

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    Amen Bro. Blair. Thankyou all for your input.
     
  19. Daniel Dunivan

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    Up to what time does Mosheim include? Does he include the beginnings of the Baptists in England? I know the English translation of his latin work was published in the mid-1800s. Anyone know?

    Grace and Peace, Danny [​IMG]
     
  20. rsr

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