Missionary Baptist

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Clint Kritzer, Feb 19, 2002.

  1. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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    This quote is taken from one of our Catholic members, Uncle Ray, from Mississippi. <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> The Missionary Baptists, not part of the SBC, are primarily African American.
    Most of the African Americans I know are either Missionary Baptist or Catholic.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    It is my understanding that the Missionary Baptist broke from the Primitives in the early 1800's. Does anyone have any further comments about the Missionary Baptist or why there would be such a heavy black membership of this sect in Ray's area?

    Look forward to any input. May God bless you

    - Clint
     
  2. rlvaughn

    rlvaughn
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    Missionary Baptist is somewhat of an inexact term when it comes to identifying Baptists. Broadly, a large number of Baptists are missionary Baptists, including the Southern Baptist Convention. So on one hand it is a generic term that identifies as church as being "missionary" in their philosophy. When it comes to using the term in the church name, though, there is quite a bit of variation from area to area. In the southwest region (TX, AR, OK, LA, MS & CA), a missionary Baptist church will almost always be either a black church affiliated with one of the National Baptist Conventions or a white church that is landmark and either unaffiliated or affiliated with the American Baptist Association or the Baptist Missionary Association of America. I have found a number of missionary Baptists in Missouri, Tennessee, & Kentucky are unaffiliated landmark-type congregations, but also have seen Southern Baptist congregations in these areas use the terminology as well. Several years ago there were quite a few churches in southern Missouri that had "Southern Missionary Baptist" on their signs, but in recent travels there I noticed some of these have changed to just "Baptist". When I travelled in rural areas of north Alabama and north Georgia, all of the churches that used "Missionary Baptist" on their church signs were Southern Baptists. These constitute most of those with which I am familiar.

    Specifically in regard to Black Baptists, most of them are missionary Baptists, and most of the churches are affiliated with either the NBCUSA, NBCAm., PNBC, or the NMBC. Even the National Primitive Baptist Convention takes on more traits of missionary than Primitive Baptists (but there are also regular black Primitive Baptists). Blacks in America are members of Baptist churches more than any other denomination (with the possible exception of Catholic, I'd have to refresh my memory for sure on that), and most black Baptists are missionary Baptists.
     
  3. Jeff Weaver

    Jeff Weaver
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    CK wrote:
    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>It is my understanding that the Missionary Baptist broke from the Primitives in the early 1800's. Does anyone have any further comments about the Missionary Baptist or why there would be such a heavy black membership of this sect in Ray's area?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Well, hard to know where to start with this one.

    In the early years pretty much all of the Cavlinistic type baptists were just plain Baptists without modifers other than regular, general, or separate. No Conventions, fellowships or any of that stuff. In the early 19th century, there was increasing pressure to keep up with the Joneses (in this case the Methodists), and some baptists adopted some of the innovations of the Methodists, e.g., sunday schools, revials or protracted meetings, etc. This caused a division, with the sides initally known as the "new school" and "old school" baptists. This schism took place over several years but basically from 1825-1840. The New School type developed into Missionary Baptists. The Old School remained truer to the original way of doing things, but in all honesty there were some changes on both sides, but far fewer on the Old School side. The Old School faction eventually adopted the name Primitive Baptists over the course of the next 60 or so years.

    The Missionary Baptist, "new school" side fractured in 1845 over the issue of Slavery, and a Northern and Southern faction developing. The Northern Faction became the American Baptist convention, the Southern folks formed the Southern Baptist Convention.

    As time progresses and the Civil War was fought and decided and slaves were freed, they began establishing their own congregations. This happened among all baptist factions, Primitive Baptists, and Southern Baptists. Primitive Baptists of African-American heritage kept up for many years a "correspondence" with their European-American counterparts, and in many cases still do. The division was a bit more profound in the Southern Baptist Convention in the 1860-1880 period, and the former slaves who came to believe the faith of their former masters just couldn't live within the bounds of the Southern Baptist Covention, and those churches became known as just plain "Missionary Baptists." Some would eventually affiliate with the various African-American Baptist organizations, some didnot.

    Is that clear as mud?

    At any rate, in places in the border south, and probably others, but I am familiar with the border south area, there are European-American "Missionary Baptists." Some would approximate the IFBs, others would be of various stripes from near pentecostals to high church types.

    The sign in the lawn out front isn't all that descriptive, so the doctrine and practice found inside the doors of African-American or European-American "Missionary Baptist" churches would be all over the map, from calvinistic to arminian, though most would seem to tend toward the latter in my experience.
     
  4. Clint Kritzer

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    Thanks Robert -

    So missionary Baptist (with a small "m") is not the same as the denominational sect, the Missionary Baptist (with a capitol "M")! I see.

    Or am I right in thinking that there is a sect of our denomination called the Missionary Baptist that is not a generic use of the term? Or was the split in the 1820's and 30's a seperation of the Primitives that were non-evangelistic from everyone else?

    - Clint
     
  5. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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    Thanks Jeff. I was posting at the same time you were.
     
  6. rlvaughn

    rlvaughn
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    Clint, first I will address the "Primitive/Missionary" split, which I intended to do in the first post, but was pressed for time. I concur with what Bro. Jeff said, but will make a few comments. Regardless of one's position on the "Missionary Society" question, it is fairly historically obvious that it was the societies that was the new thing among Baptists (and not only missionary societies, but temperance societies, aid societies, as well as Sunday Schools & theological seminaries, etc.). These arose in America primarily through the prominence of Adoniram Judson and Luther Rice. Early rumblings appeared among Baptists in the 1810's, with John Taylor's Thoughts on Missions and Daniel Parker's A Public Address...to the Missionary Society... coming out at the end of that century. There is no exact date for a division of "Primitive" and "Missionary" Baptists, though some tend to set it as 1830-32. But there was no national organization of Baptists, so the division came as churches and associations sorted out with whom they would and would not fellowship. Here in Texas, probably because of westward expansion coming at the same time as these divisions, things were not clearly sorted out until nearly 1850. As Jeff pointed out, Missionary and Primitive were not designations that were associated with the division, but grew up later. The name that was common for many of the Baptists before the division was "United" Baptist. Interestingly, both sides eventually dropped the designation, although there are a few Baptists in the U.S. that have retained the name. One thing some may assume is that the division was just a soteriological one, between Calvinism and Arminianism, but it was not really (though some of the "Missionary" Baptists were modified Calvinists or Fullerites). But many of the arguments against the missionary societies and other innovations are ecclesiological in nature. One thing that may have been a decided disadvantage, in the long run, for the "anti-missionary" movement, was that Alexander Campbell was on their side. During his brief tenure with the Baptists, Campbell took a strong "anti-missionary" position. He was arminian and became very unpopular with real Baptists, and he and his followers would be driven out when in the minority, or pulled out when in the majority. His influence probably turned a number of Baptists away from the "Primitive" side and toward the "Missionary" side.

    Concerning "Missionary" Baptists, there is no entire denominational group that goes by the name Missionary Baptist, except the National Missionary Baptist Convention. But churches of the American Baptist Association and the Baptist Missionary Association of America almost always call themselves Missionary Baptist in the organizations and on their church signs. So I did intend the small "m" missionary Baptists to designate those that are missionary in philosophy and outlook and the big "M" Missionary Baptists to designate those that actually call themselves by the name. Yes, the split in the 1830's was primarily a split between those who were "non-evangelistic" from everyone else. I probably wouldn't use exactly those terms, but I think we all understand what we mean. But "anti-missionary" doesn't seem like all that good of a term for a Regular Predestinarian Primitive Baptist like Daniel Parker, who brought the first Baptist church to Texas, and travelled all across its eastern and central parts preaching and organizing churches (eleven, I think). He probably travelled more miles, preached more sermons, and organized more churches than most any "missionary" Baptist of his time in Texas (and had to dodge Indian arrows while doing it). Some people prefer the term "anti-missionary society." This expresses not opposing preaching the gospel, but opposing the society way of sending preachers. Well, I'm rambling and I gotta head to the house. I'll check back later.
     
  7. Speedpass

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    I've noticed alot of "missionary baptist" churches here in rural Mississippi. I just wonder if they are predominantly black churches or predominantly white. :confused:
     
  8. rlvaughn

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    Jimmy, statewide, white Missionary Baptists are not that strong in Mississippi. There are some scattered over the state, with a pretty good concentration in southern Mississippi (especially around the Louisiana boot-toe area). There is another little concentration around the Scott/Neshoba county area. I am not familiar with any other major areas, though there could be some. The black Missionary Baptists, I think, will have a much better representation statewide.
     
  9. tyndale1946

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    PARKER, DANIEL (1781-1844). Daniel Parker, antimissionary Baptist leader, was born on April 6, 1781, in Culpeper County, Virginia, to Rev. John and Sarah (White) Parker. The family moved to Georgia when he was a child. His education seems to have been extremely limited. He and Patsy Dickerson were married on March 11, 1802; they eventually had eleven children. They moved to Dickson County, Tennessee, in 1803. In 1806 Parker was ordained to preach by the Turnbull Baptist Church. He was an advocate of "Two Seedism," the doctrine that since the time of Adam mankind has been the bearer of two seeds, divine and diabolical. Parker supported this doctrine in two pamphlets in 1826: Views on the Two Seeds and The Second Dose of Doctrine on the Two Seeds. Though his Two Seedism separated him from most Primitive Baptists, he retained their opposition to the Missionary Baptists, with whom his conflict started about 1815. (Primitive Baptists do not support missionary, tract, or Bible societies, Sunday schools, or theological seminaries.) In 1820 Parker, then living in Illinois, published a pamphlet, A Public Address to the Baptist Society, and Friends of Religion in General, on the Principle and Practice of the Baptist Board of Foreign Missions, for the United States of America, attacking missionary practices. He published the Church Advocate, a newspaper, from 1829 to 1831. He served as a state senator in Illinois in 1822. In 1833, after a trip to Texas, he organized the Pilgrim Predestinarian Regular Baptist Church at Lamotte, Illinois, with seven members; the church was later moved to Texas. In 1986 the Pilgrim Church, which continued to meet near Elkhart, Texas, was the oldest Primitive Baptist church in the state. Parker was elected to represent Nacogdoches County at the General Councilqv of the Provisional Governmentqv of Texas. He was elected a member of the Fourth Congress of Texas in 1839. He was barred from taking his seat, however, because ordained ministers were constitutionally ineligible; President Mirabeau B. Lamarqv declared the seat vacant on November 18, 1839. On October 17, 1840, at Hopewell Primitive Baptist Church near Douglas, Texas, Parker led in the organization of the Union Primitive Baptist Association, the second Baptist association organized in Texas. He died at his home in Anderson County on December 3, 1844, and was buried in the Pilgrim Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery.

    BIBLIOGRAPHY: James Milton Carroll, A History of Texas Baptists (Dallas: Baptist Standard, 1923)... The two-seed doctrinal error made him unsound as far as the Primitive Baptist were concerned... Wasn't this the same elder that was killed in a indian massacre?... Brother Glen [​IMG]

    [ February 19, 2002: Message edited by: tyndale1946 ]
     
  10. Speedpass

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by rlvaughn:
    Jimmy, statewide, white Missionary Baptists are not that strong in Mississippi. There are some scattered over the state, with a pretty good concentration in southern Mississippi (especially around the Louisiana boot-toe area). There is another little concentration around the Scott/Neshoba county area. I am not familiar with any other major areas, though there could be some. The black Missionary Baptists, I think, will have a much better representation statewide.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Sounds reasonable. I have a friend in Laurel, MS(south-central part of the state) whose father is a Missionary Baptist pastor.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. rlvaughn

    rlvaughn
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    Bro. Glen, the Union Primitive Baptist Assn. is still in existence (with 4 churches), as well as the Pilgrim Church (no longer in the Union Assn.). None of these churches follow Parker's "Two-Seedism", but they are Absolute Predestinarian Primitive Baptists. A number of Elder Parker's family was killed in the Indian raid of Fort Parker, and his niece, Cynthia Ann, was captured. She became the mother of the later famous chief Quanah Parker. But Daniel lived east of this area and wasn't killed by Indians. He died of sickness, I believe, brought on by exposure during one of his ministerial journeys. Of course he would have been a fairly old man for the primitive wilderness conditions in which he lived. He was a true pilgrim.

    I mentioned above that A. Campbell's positions hurt the "anti-missionary" movement. No doubt, Daniel Parker's "two-seeds" doctrine also injured the effectiveness of the opposition to the new "missionary society system."
     

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