Intro to Landmarkism...?

Discussion in 'Baptist History' started by Heavy Metal Calvinist, Nov 28, 2005.

  1. Heavy Metal Calvinist

    Heavy Metal Calvinist
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    Could someone point me to a scholary introduction into what landmarkism actually is? I need the 101 laymen course....
     
  2. Gold Dragon

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  3. rsr

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    I hesitate to recommend a source because a) it's difficult to find an unbiased reference and b) there are various strains within Landmarkism that prevent an exhaustive list of beliefs held by all Landmarkers.

    Previous board discussions are at:

    http://www.baptistboard.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php/topic/16/368.html#000000

    http://www.baptistboard.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php/topic/16/362.html#000000

    http://www.baptistboard.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php/topic/16/314.html#000000

    http://www.baptistboard.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php/topic/16/246.html#000000
     
  4. rlvaughn

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  5. Heavy Metal Calvinist

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    Thanks, all... I cut and pasted those links to track down.

    I have heard terms "landmark" and "chain-link successionism..." etc. and wanted to see how this compares to historically verifiable info.

    What got me started on this: I recently downloaded Brother Phil's Johnson's 2003 review of Dave Hunt's book "What Love is This." In it Johnson mentions James Edward McGoldrick's "Baptist Succesionism- a Crucial question in Baptist History." I am going to try locate a copy of that one, based on Phil's recomendation.

    Phil said in the review that Spurgeon was somewhat taken in by this thinking, and I took from his tone that most successionism work is historically flawed.

    When I checked out Phil's "Hall of Church History" I saw his short comment on Trail of Blood, J. M. Carroll's work on Baptist successionism. "Trail..." is like scripture to some old-timers. Therefore, I wanted to study this in light of scripture and history, without the traditional biases....

    [ November 28, 2005, 10:30 PM: Message edited by: Heavy Metal Calvinist ]
     
  6. Rhetorician

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    To all who have an ear to hear:

    This happens to be a personal interest of mine!

    Landmarkism or "Baptist Successionism" is a reaction to the Cambellite Movement of the early to mid 1800s. Many of the Baptist churches in Middle Tn. and So. Central Kentucky were drawn away and into the controversy. This later became the Churches of Christ Restoration Movement and the Christian Churches.

    JR Graves and Pendleton and the author of "The Trail of Blood" wrote and tried to give a polemic and apology from Church History that the Baptists were the first and original church. The Baptists did not leave anyone, the Roman Catholics and others left us, etc. et al.

    Some even believe that the Baptists go back to John the Baptist and that the Church at Jerusalem was the orginal Baptist Church.

    This is a great oversimplification but is in a nutshell--as requested above! Check it out.

    sdg!

    rd
     
  7. Baptist born Baptist bred

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    Rhetorician,

    Sorry, I must disagree with your close identification of "Landmarkism and Baptist Successionism." Pendleton never adhered to the "trail of blood" and for him the controversy centered on baptism and the non-recognition of Pedobatpist churches as Gospel churches. For the record, it was Graves, Pendleton, and A.C. Dayton that made up the Landmark triumvirate and successionism had nothing to do with it until Graves published Old Landmarksim: What Is It?" Pendleton responded at this point commenting that Graves should not have added this and non-intercommunion among Baptist churches to Landmarkism. For evidence of this, see J.J.D. Renfroe's "Vindication of the Communion of Baptist Churches." That may not be the exact title but close enough. Pendleton's letter is included in the introduction.

    I would write more, but if you want you can see a new dissertation which addresses this issue among others titled, "James Madison Pendleton and His Contributions to Baptist Ecclesiology."

    In short, Landmarkism is the non-recognition of Pedobaptist ministers as Gospel ministers because they have not been baptized or ordained by a Gospel church, and the non-recognition of Pedobaptist churches as true churches because they do not rightly administer the ordinances (in particular Baptism."

    Successionism is a different matter altogether established in part by the fact R.B.C. Howell held to it and fought vehemently against Grave's and co.
     
  8. rsr

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    Correct; and Pendleton also did not dismiss the concept of the universal church.

    Landmarkism is not necessarily a monotlithic set of beliefs. The strain of Landmarkism that Graves espoused (which also differs from some other Landmark adherants, including on strict successionism), however, has a special place and significance in the history of Baptists in the South. Pendleton moved to the North and Dayton died during the Civil War, which left Graves as the most outspoken and widely distributed of the triumvirate in the South for many years.

    In short, Landmarkism is the non-recognition of Pedobaptist ministers as Gospel ministers because they have not been baptized or ordained by a Gospel church, and the non-recognition of Pedobaptist churches as true churches because they do not rightly administer the ordinances (in particular Baptism.

    This is indeed the heart of original Landmark thinking.
     
  9. Squire Robertsson

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    This might explain where my Northern Baptist teachers got some of their presuppositions.
     
  10. Rhetorician

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    Baptist Born
    Baptist Bred,

    I submit to your better knowledge and expertise. I was trying to speak in general terms rather than specific minutia.

    Please forgive. And of course you are correct.

    sdg!

    rd
     
  11. rsr

    rsr
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    Could be. His Church Manual was published by the American Baptist Publication Society's Judson Press in 1867 (and apparently later re-issued by the SBC's Broadman Press.)

    CHURCH MANUAL
     
  12. Squire Robertsson

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    Then he would have been two generations away from my teachers. In other word's Pendelton was comtemporary with the teachers who taught my teachers' teachers. (At least that is a conservative estimate.)
     
  13. rsr

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    At least. He was of the generation after Wayland.

    Graves' ghost still putters around the SBC, not to mention elsewhere ...
     
  14. imported_J.R. Graves

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    I believe some of you good brethren have brought into a couple of common Landmark myths:

    Myth #1 - "Baptist Successionism is a reaction to the Cambellite Movement". There is no doubt that Landmarkism was influenced by the Campbellite movement, but Baptist successionism / Baptist perpetuity existed long before Alexander Campbell. For example I doubt that the English Baptist historian Orchard ever knew Campbell. Also what about historians such as Crosby, Jones, D'Anvers, and a host of other men who wrote before the Campbell controversy. The fact is that all Baptists in American and Europe before Whitsitt came on the scene believed in some form of Baptist successionism.

    Myth #2 - "Pendleton never adhered to the trail of blood". This is an often repeated charge against Pendleton, but it is without cause. No, Pendleton was not "local-church only" as his "Church Manuel" shows and he did not believe in closed communion as his book "Three Reasons" shows. However you will be hard-pressed to show an original quote where he denied Baptist perpetuity. No, he didn't give this doctrine the attention he gave pulpit exchange or alien immersion, but he did not deny it either.

    Just a few thoughts for you all,
     
  15. rsr

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    While Pendleton maintain perpetuity, can it be said that he affirmed succesionism?
     
  16. Baptist born Baptist bred

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    Okay....J.R. Graves (I like the name) Let's clarify where Pendleton stood on the issue of succession. No he did not fight against it, but it is very significant that he did not utilize it as one of his arguments. Graves and others used this argument to support their conclusions. Pendleton did not. He was noticably different in his handling of this issue than other Landmark members.

    Let's look at some quotes...

    Morgan Patterson recognized that Pendleton did not hold to these views. He wrote, “Yet it must be remembered that Pendleton differed from other Landmarkers in significant ways. His understanding of Landmarkism seemed to be limited to his concept of pulpit affiliation. Also, unlike many Landmarkers, he accepted the concept of the universal church, never adhered to Baptist successionism, and was able to work within the organizational framework of the conventions and societies of Baptists in a way many Landmarkers were never able to do.” See W. Morgan Patterson, “The Influences of Landmarkism Among Baptists,” Baptist History and Heritage 10 (January 1975): 56.

    James Tull notes four areas where Pendleton disagreed with Graves: “(1) Pendleton never relinquished the idea of the universal church; (2) refused to equate the Kingdom of God with the aggregate of Baptist churches; (3) refused to subscribe to the theory of church succession; and (4) thought the theory of nonintercommunion was trivial and unimportant.” James E. Tull, High-Church Baptists in the South (Macon: Mercer Press, 2000), 44.

    Thomas White wrote in a dissertation that document all of Pendleton's books and over 700 of his articles, "On the issue of church succession, there is no clear refutation of the church succession theory in Pendleton’s writings. Tull did not document his statement; however, after studying Pendleton’s work, this author concludes that Tull accurately noted an absence of church succession in Pendleton’s writings." Thomas White, "James Madison Pendleton and His Contributions to Baptist Ecclesiolgoy" Ph.D. diss. Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, 2005.

    Additionally, sources like S. H. Ford, “History of the Baptists in the Southern States by B. F. Riley. D. D. —Misstatements—Old Landmarkism— Succession—Irregular Immersions,” Ford’s Christian Repository and Home Circle (July 1899): 420, claimed that Pendleton said, “The ana-Baptist [sic] question [did they sprinkle] really has nothing to do with the landmark question; nor has the church succession question. . . . I doubt not there have been in all ages, from the days of the apostles, persons who have believed for substance as Baptists do now; but that there has been a regular succession of churches, I am by no means certain. . . . It has not been established to my satisfaction; but I am a ‘landmarker.’”

    This last quote is from Pendleton himself (according to Ford). This is my point. Successionism is a separate issue from Landmarkism. Again, R.B.C. Howell affirmed successionsim but fought vehemently against Graves.

    Howell said that “the Apostolic Church was Baptist and that through several channels it may be readily traced in a state of comparative purity down to our time.” See R. B. C. Howell, The Terms of Communion at the Lord’s Table (Philadelphia: American Baptist Publication Society, 1846), 262.
     
  17. Squire Robertsson

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    I would observe the American Baptist Publication Society would have been a Northern Baptist organization.
     
  18. imported_J.R. Graves

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    Hey Baptist born and bred,

    You make some good points on Pendleton. I have both Tull and Patterson's books in my library and you will notice that neither of them give original quotes from Pendleton to back up there claim. At best Tull uses an argument from silence. I am not familiar with Thomas White. I think I would very much enjoy reading his dissertation. Your quote by S.H. Ford is very interesting and the first original quote by Pendleton I have read on the subject. It seems from that quote that as rsr hinted at that Pendleton believed in Baptist perpetuity, but not a chain-link succession. I would like to read this article in its entirety and I am going to try and get a photocopy. I think it is obvious that Pendelton's understanding of Baptist history was still very different from popular modern English Separatists Origins theory. It would be interesting to search the pages of the pre-Civil War "Tennessee Baptist" paper and see if Pendleton ever commented on Orchard or Robertson's histories that Graves was reprinting at that time.

    Also according to Tull, Pendleton was a strong opponent of alien immersion even late in life when he was pastoring in the north. You will notice that Morgon Patterson misses this emphasis on Pendleton's. Also in Pendleton's autobiography written before he died he says that his arguments on pulpit affiliation had never been answered and he still held to these old views.

    I agree with you that successionism can be a separate issue from Landmarkism. Howell and Spurgeon are two examples that prove this.
     
  19. rlvaughn

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    Surely not these formally trained and recognized historians! :eek: Sorry, just venting. But sometimes one gets tired of hearing folks must be right just because of their credentials.

    Back on subject, there is no question that Pendleton (and lots of other Landmarkers) differed from Graves. I think that point has been overplayed to prove a point, whether purposely or not I do not know (and I mean by authors, not posters on this thread). As rsr said, "Landmarkism is not necessarily a monotlithic set of beliefs."
     
  20. Major B

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    Referring to the apostolic church as Baptist (or any other denomination) is akin to referring to Jesus as a "Calvinist," Paul as "Reformed," or Peter as a "Pentecostal." We Baptists have tried to imitate the apostolic church perhaps better than anyone, but we are not there yet. A Baptist refers to the Acts 15 meeting as "the first associational meeting," and the Catholics/Protestants refer to that meeting as a "church council." The next time the Apostles show up at an associational meeting, I hope someone lets me know ahead of time!

    Landmarkism was a reaction, perhaps an over-reaction, to Campbellism and to the deadness of the Primitive Baptists. [In the very baptist area where I live, there were once over 400 Primitive Baptist churches--I believe there are two now, and they are not very big.]

    I was saved in the service, and in 20 years of living all over the US and the world, and in fellowshipping only with very conservative baptists, I NEVER HEARD of "alien immersion," "Succession," or closed communion, let alone the near-blasphemy of the so-called "Baptist Bride." When I moved back to KY, I heard a man referring to "alien immersion," and I thought he was making a joke about "Star Trek," or perhaps referring to baptising someone without a green card.

    Being hung up on man-made teachings when most of our members can't parse the Trinity, Justification, or Imputation, is not putting the cart before the horse, it is putting away the horse and hopping on a tricycle.
     

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