New IFB Church Movement

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by IfbReformer, Mar 24, 2003.

  1. IfbReformer

    IfbReformer
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    I was saved and grew up in an IFB(Independant Fundamental Baptist) church. I am now 27 years old and I have seen a great variety of them. Some of them are Calvinistic(like one we attended for the last couple of years), some are arminian(like the one my parents were saved). But the things most have in common are these:

    A large majority are KJV ONLY.
    Most others if they are not KJV ONLY they are KJV in preference.
    A large majority do not view themselves as Protestants, but a seperate exclusive section of Christians.
    Most believe in some type of successionism of baptistic churches - some very far to the right hold to Landmarkism and Baptist Bride theology(only Baptists churches are the bride of Christ).
    About half(mostly up north) are very conservative on music - only classical musical like organ, piano orchestra music are acceptable. Christian Contemporary music is viewed as a tool of the devil.
    Some that are really old fashioned don't allow their women to wear pants.
    Most preach tithing(vehemetly).
    Most teach personal seperation - this is a big one and it basically means as a Christian you should not go to Movie Theatres,Smoke,drink and a laundry list of other things as well.

    About 99 percent of them have an altar call at the end of each service where a preacher proclaims that you need to come down to the front and make of the church to get saved or make a decision for Christ(if you stay in your pew it probably won't amount to much).

    Another thing 99 percent of IFBs have in common is that they look at non-IFBs and especially non-Baptists as second class Christians. If you are not an IFB or especially not a Baptist then you are lucky if you are even saved.

    I know this to be true as I was a part of the crowd and grew up in many IFB churches(as my father traveled for work).

    About 5 years ago I found a new kind of IFB church. I hope that God will bless and many more of these will sprout up across our land.

    Just last year I found another church like this new one so they are up and coming.

    Here is how they do things:
    They use the NIV version as their pulpit bible(although they would not forbid someone from preaching from and NASB or a KJV or any other solid modern translation).

    They use a blend of traditional hymns with new praise music. They use overhead projectors for the music.

    They preach the Word of God and not their opinion - they are not afraid to let the Holy Spirit do his job with people as to their personal standards.

    They do not have an altar call, instead they have prayer rooms in the back where someone can go if they want someone to assist them.

    While they are IFBs and they preach Soverign Grace theology, they are not puffed up about it.

    They still seperate corporately when it comes sending out missionaries but they view themselves as Protestants and as a part of the Universal body of Christ.

    I may be wrong on this and I will have to check but I believe the Pastor of this church started out about 10 years with a traditional congregation of about 200 and the church today is building its third auditoriam(because it outgrew the first two) and has about 1700 in attendance each Sunday.

    When I first walked into this church and heard the Pastor preaching from the NIV and heard the worship music and especially when I did not see an altar call my feathers were a bit ruffeled. Then I began to investigage things like the translation issue, the altar call and music and found out that there was nothing wrong with what they were doing, in fact it was better. They wanted to sing to the Lord a new song(not the same hymns every week) while still using the great old hymns of the faith, they wanted people to understand the Word of God in their common language(not the archaic language of 400 years ago). They wanted the Holy Spirit to be the changer of mens hearts and lives and not human mechanisms like the Altar call. They want their people to understand their distintive Baptist heritage but they do not want them to become denomonational biggets.

    It is a breadth of fresh air.

    Ifbreformer
     
  2. Dr. Bob

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    Glad you have found such a good church!

    I am historic ifb (NOT the sad parody of the psycho-ifb'ers you listed first) and long "reformed" as you are. I classify myself as a "Reformed Baptist" proudly.

    It IS a great joy to my heart!
     
  3. mark

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    Ok... I am trying to see what is so wrong with the first church you listed... although you put media-type spin on the comments (such as deciding in your pew isn't worth much, tools of the devil etc... which makes it SOUND bad.
    But consider that Baptists are not Protestants. Nothing against Protestants, but Protestant churches grew from the Protestant Reformation, Baptists (Anabaptists) predate this. I love the NIV, but is there something wrong with a congregation using the KJV for corporate reading, etc.?
    I don't think there is anything sinful about a projector and film, but should Christians attend most of the movies put out by Hollywood today? I don't think so.
    I love the newsboys, but our church people love the old hymns.... They are classics for a reason, they have be loved for a long time!
    To be critical of churches whose people choose this type of worship and fellowship is every bit as wrong as to call contemporary Christian music a tool of the devil.
     
  4. mesly

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    Mark, I cannot speak for IfbReformer, but I can speak from my own similar experiences. I agree with you in that we should not be critical of churches who choose to worship or set standards in a certain way (as long as its based on scripture).

    My experience with the type of church that IfbReformer left has been that it is usually these types of churches who tell their members that if you don't do it "our way" then you are at best, a sub-standard Christian and at worst, you are not saved at all. This really puts both a guilt trip and a feeling of bondage on the person who is attending. If that person is not very strong in the faith, it can be disasterous. This does not promote a healthy relationship with our Lord.

    On the other hand, there are a lot of churches out there who have gone off the deep end and have no standards whatsoever. They over react against the legalism and turn our liberty in Christ into license for sin. We need to have an equal balance.

    The bottom line, find a church that is teaching the word of God that promotes growth in Christ. Without this, there is no reason to be there.

    God bless,
    Michael
     
  5. IfbReformer

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    What is wrong with the church I listed?

    It is WRONG to confine people to one English translation of the Bible and tell that if they are studying from anyother version the Holy Spirit will not speak through it.

    It is WRONG to teach a preference or opinion on the same level as the clear commands and teachings of the Word of God.

    It is WRONG to say that if music is modern or upbeat it is a tool of the devil.

    It is WRONG for a preacher to say things like I just heard two weeks ago during and invitation where I was the song leader - he said "I saw some of you raise your hands to make a decision - now why have you not come down to the altar to make the decision - God is waiting down here to talk to you - you think you'll make it there - but you won't you need to come down this aisle" -things like that are clear heresy.

    It is WRONG to say that a church is not Baptist they have no authority to preach the Gospel.

    So those are just a few things that are wrong.


    I have studied church history quite extensively and I understand why you believe Baptists are not Protestants. I have read books like "The Trail of Blood" and other Baptist succession books. I have also read more balance Baptist Historic accounts and believe there is much assumption and presupposition in accounts like the trail of blood.

    The problem is that they try to link to people like the donatists and novatians but they gloss over problems these people had even from historians who treated them fairly. Just because some groups rebaptized does not make them like us. An example would be that the Dontatists believed that if a Christian gave in during persecution he could not be brought back to repentance or allowed back into the church even if he tried to repent.

    I do not doubt that there have been persons throughout church history who held to similar Baptist tenents. But the modern day Baptists clearly find their origins from a English Seperatists. The true Anabaptists who are consistant with their heritage from the 1500s can be found in the Mennontites and Hutterites.

    The Anabaptists that many try to link to were Arminian in theology and pacifists.

    It is very easy from church history to show that many of the English Seperatist Churches were born out of the Anglican and Puritan Churches. We stand together with historic Presbyterians, Methodists, Lutherans and other Protestants in proclaiming salvation by grace through faith. We stand with them in "protesting" the abuses and errors of the Roman Catholic Church. We stand together in the universal body of Christ.

    So are we Protestants(do we protest the abuses of Rome?)absolutely!

    Where we are different is church structure and baptism, and communion - these are the three main differences. We believe in autonomy, most Protestant churches do not. We believe in believer's baptism - most Protestant churches do not.We believe communion is only cermonial and pictorial, some them believe it is more.

    But we can learn a great deal from non-baptist Protestant preachers like Martin Luther, John Calvin, George Whitefield, John Knox and Jonathan Edwards. We simply agree to disagree with them in some areas.

    1 Corinthians 14:8-11(NIV)
    "8Again, if the trumpet does not sound a clear call, who will get ready for battle? 9So it is with you. Unless you speak intelligible words with your tongue, how will anyone know what you are saying? You will just be speaking into the air. 10Undoubtedly there are all sorts of languages in the world, yet none of them is without meaning. 11If then I do not grasp the meaning of what someone is saying, I am a foreigner to the speaker, and he is a foreigner to me."

    If people cannot clearly(not rufly) understand the language of the translation then a newer translation which is in our common tongue(in 2003) and not from (1611 and 1789)like the KJV should be used.

    Men fought bled and died so the common man could have the Bible in his common speach - yes we can understand many parts of the KJV, but it is not how we speak today - it is not in the common man's tongue as the apostles delivered in the koine greek 2000 years ago.

    To lift up a language from 400 years ago as something that is holy when Christ and his apostles never spoke that language is historically and biblically wrong.

    I agree that much of what Hollywood puts out today is filth - look at the TV realtity shows that flant all the nudity and sex. I agree, but there is still good material and good movies out there. I use the rating systems and look into movies before we watch them. Sometimes we have to stop a movie while we are watching it. You do need to be careful, yet there is still some good stuff out there.

    I love a good sci-fi flick like Star Trek or Star Wars or a good murder mystery or chase movie like US Marshals. Certainly there may be some things said or done I disagree with - but what is the overall picture?

    When you go to a professional football game can you be pretty sure that people are going to use foul or vulgar language - or will people be getting drunk and spilling their bear? You don't go for things do you even though you expect to see them - you go for the football game.

    We tend especially in Baptist Churches to tear down anything to do with movies but we lift up professional sports like it is next to godliness.
    It is not uncommon to hear a Baptist preacher talking about his favorite professioanal sports teams from the pulpit - but if he were to use a movie character from a movie as an example he would be booed off the stage in some churches- do we see little problem here?

    IFBReformer

    [edited to correct first quote code to function correctly]

    [ March 26, 2003, 04:56 PM: Message edited by: rlvaughn ]
     
  6. Ben W

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    My experienc of a number of IFB people, is what I have gained from this board, resultingly, I would not be keen to go anywhere near one for the most part, although I will admit, there are a few genuinley nice people from the IFB who post here, unfortunatley a large number of people who are really quite rude.

    I would have no problem though, going to this style of IFB church. Maybe this is the reason that so many are going to it. God can do amazing miracles when people are prepared to put away false doctrine, and genuinley seek Him.
     
  7. Abiyah

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    My first encounter with Baptists ever was with an
    IFB church in Minneapolis back in 1980, and it was
    far more like the second one listed in the first post
    than the first one listed. Bryant Avenue Baptist
    was a fine church with a school attached. The
    pastor and the people there were far, far better
    than average caliber.
     
  8. mark

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    I really sincerely want to thank IFBReformer and Mesly for the clearist, most sincere and most complete replies to any thing I have ever posted. You both make really excellent points.
    I would like to start with IFBReformer's point :
    1 Corinthians 14:8-11(NIV) "8Again, if the trumpet does not sound a clear call, who will get ready for battle? 9So it is with you. Unless you speak intelligible words with your tongue, how will anyone know what you are saying? You will just be speaking into the air. 10Undoubtedly there are all sorts of languages in the world, yet none of them is without meaning. 11If then I do not grasp the meaning of what someone is saying, I am a foreigner to the speaker, and he is a foreigner to me."
    My friend, this is the best argument againstusing the KJV and for using the NIV and NASB, MKJV, etc I have ever heard. Point WELL taken.
    The next issue is a little fuzzier for me, I love a good sci-fi flick like Star Trek or Star Wars or a good murder mystery or chase movie like US Marshals. Certainly there may be some things said or done I disagree with - but what is the overall picture? Let me say, I attend movies, I enjoy movies (especially Star Wars and Star Trek.. lol) However I was really convicted by a sermon I heard by Andy Stanley when he compared going to a movie that was overall good, but just had a little bad part as saying "here, eat this good candy, there is just a little poisen in it." Christ died for our sins, I question whether or not we should be entertained by sin. Believe me, I am not being holier-than-thou (or NIV holier than you [​IMG] ) because I go to movies and rent them (no difference).
    The music issue is aways tough, because I really do think music is matter of taste. Something written by Bach is not inherently more spiritalul than something centuries later by Fanny Crosby or even later by Peter Furler (Newsboys). However, if I am attending a church with many older folks whose tastes are not toward modern music I don't think I should demand my music be performed or sung instead of theirs. I can go home and slap on some cds and sing to my hearts content. And for me it is ok because I love the old hymn as well as the contemporary. Let me agree with you that blasting one type of music from the pulpit is inappropriate and I agree it happens.
    Finally on the iss ue of are Baptist Protestants..... you said . I have also read more balance Baptist Historic accounts and believe there is much assumption and presupposition in accounts like the trail of blood. IMHO there are no balanced accounts, people come into the argument with presupposed ideas and write their history upon that. You statement, I do not doubt that there have been persons throughout church history who held to similar Baptist tenents. doesn't carry all the way through. The RC church does not much resemble the Roman church of the Middle Ages and it certainly has nothing to do with the 1st century church, but they are still Catholic. Sure there are issues that we and the Donatists don't jell on but that doesn't mean that we are not their decendants.
    Thank you so much for you thoughtful and civil replies. IMHO this is how Baptists should discuss things! God bless you, Mark
    PS I am glad you like your new church!
     
  9. RaptureReady

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    IfbReformer said: "If people cannot clearly(not rufly) understand the language of the translation then a newer translation which is in our common tongue(in 2003) and not from (1611 and 1789)like the KJV should be used."

    If I'm not mistaken the KJB was written on a 5th grade reading level. Sure, some verses are difficult to understand, but that is why you study and why we have Bible study groups, and one reason why the Holy Spirit lives inside of us. The Bible is not going to read like your every day novel. And another thing, 1 Corinthians 2:14  But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. A lost man is not going to truly understand the Bible, why, because they don't have the Holy Spirit teaching them.

    The Bible does not need to be rewritten, but reread.

    BTW, about your post on you leaving the first church. Sounds to me like someone got their feelings hurt and is now bashing the church. Sounds like you found a church that makes you and your flesh feel good.
     
  10. IfbReformer

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    Mark,

    Thanks for you civil responses as well. You know how IFBs can sometimes be and I have tried to change my tone in last few years - even on things I feel strongly about. "speak the truth in love" that is my motto - at least I try to live up to that.

    As far as the analogy that Pastor gave, "here, eat this good candy, there is just a little poisen in it." here is my response:

    I have heard that many times before growing up. Here is a quote from a previous Pastor that I listened to "Sometimes you have to chew up the meat and spit out the bones". If the meat has two many bones in it than you probably don't want to eat it at all - but if there a few bones and you can pick or spit them out then it is still usefull.

    This applies to many areas of life - not just movies, here are some examples:

    When I go to college at a secular university I have to chew the meat(get the education I need) and spit out the bones(don't listen to some ungodly philosphies of the some professors).

    When I am reading my Newsweek magazine I have to chew the meat(get my new info) and spit out the bones(ungodly opinions and maybe some photos that I do not like).

    When I read books by Martin Luther or John Calvin I have to chew the meat(understand the depth of knowledge on subjects we agree on like the Soverignty of God and Salvation by Grace through faith) and spit out the bones(like subjects on baptism and communion).

    So it is when I rent a movie, I look over the box or advertisment carefully - check the rating and why it is rated that way and then make an informed decision. Will this movie have to many bones(filth and swearing and nudity) where it is not worth trying to get to the meat? Or may it have a word or phrase or two that I would disagree but overall the movie is good?

    Many people would say right away after reading the analogies above that the things above are necessary but movies are not. Are they really necessary:

    Do I have to go to college? No I could survive without it.

    Do I have read any secular magazines like Newsweek? No I could survive without it.

    Do I even need to have a television? No I could survive without it.

    If we are consistant in this(if any part is wrong is is all wrong) then we need to lock ourselves up in a closet and never come out.

    If every other word in a movie is vulgar than I have no use for it - let me say that right up front - too many bones to pick out for the little bit of meat I will find.

    But if I am watching a movie and the character gets hurt and swears - would I do that know - but is that real, yes - is it in context - yes. I am not watching the story for that though, I am watching it for the story as whole.

    Basically we apply a much higher and much more demanding standard to movies and tv than we do to other things in life. I prefer to have a consistant standard accross the board. I find it interesting though that most of my IFB friends who applie such a rigiourous and inconsistant standard to movies and tv and music do not apply this same standard to professioanal sports which they all love.

    Talk to you later

    IFBReformer
     
  11. IfbReformer

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    First a note to the moderators:
    This as far as I will go in this forum on the translation issue - otherwise we can move it over there.

    Homebound,

    I am going to try very hard not to use your tone have the attitude you are displaying here(ex. Sounds to me like someone got their feelings hurt and is now bashing the church. Sounds like you found a church that makes you and your flesh feel good.)

    The KJV translators used the same passage I did and listen how they used in regard to their translation philopshy:

    Excerpt from The Translator to the Reader KJV 1611:

    "Happy is the man that delighted in the Scripture, and thrice happy that meditateth in it day and night.

    TRANSLATION NECESSARY

    But how shall men meditate in that, which they cannot understand? How shall they understand that which is kept close in an unknown tongue? as it is written, "Except I know the power of the voice, I shall be tohim that speaketh, a Barbarian, and he that speaketh, shall be a Barbarian to me." [1 Cor 14] The Apostle excepteth no tongue; not Hebrew the ancientest, not Greek the most copious, not Latin the finest. Nature taught a natural man to confess, that all of us in those tongues which we do not understand, are plainly deaf; we may turn the deaf ear unto them. The Scythian counted the Athenian, whom he did not understand, barbarous; [Clem. Alex. 1 Strom.] so the Roman did the Syrian, and the Jew (even S. Jerome himself called the Hebrew tongue barbarous, belike because it was strange to so many) [S. Jerome. Damaso.] so the Emperor of Constantinople [Michael, Theophili fil.] calleth the Latin tongue, barbarous, though Pope Nicolas do storm at it: [2::Tom. Concil. ex edit. Petri Crab] so the Jews long before Christ called all other nations, Lognazim, which islittle better than barbarous. Therefore as one complaineth, that always in the Senate of Rome, there was one or other that called for an interpreter: [Cicero 5::de finibus.] so lest the Church be driven to the like exigent, it is necessary to have translations in a readiness. Translation it is that openeth the window, to let in the light; that breaketh the shell, that we may eat the kernel; that putteth aside the curtain, that we may look into the most Holy place; that removeth the cover of the well, that we may come by the water, even as Jacob rolled away thestone from the mouth of the well, by which means the flocks of Laban were watered [Gen 29:10]. Indeed without translation into the vulgar tongue, the unlearned are but like children at Jacob's well (which is deep) [John 4:11] without a bucket or something to draw with; or as that person mentioned by Isaiah, to whom when a sealed book was delivered, with this motion, "Read this, I pray thee," he was fain to make this answer, "I cannot, for it is sealed." [Isa 29:11]"

    You said "The Bible is not going to read like your every day novel." - well thats funny because thats exactly how it read when it was originally written in koine greek. God could have had the apostles write the Bible in the classical greek of the day - the fancy greek, but he had them write it in the common trade language of the day.

    You said "The Bible does not need to be rewritten, but reread." I agree 100% that the Bible does not need to be re-written, only re-translated from its original tongues into the common man's language. If we must do this every 150 years or so to keep in fresh in the common man's language then so be it.

    You quoted "1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." as the reason why people cannot understand the KJV as well as newer translations in modern English.

    Paul did not say "the natural man receiveth not 400 year old english" he said "the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God"

    It is foolishness to the world that we believe Jesus was God in the flesh.

    It is foolishness to the world that we believe the blood of Jesus Christ cleanes us from all unrighteousness.

    It is foolishness to the world that we believe God created the earth.

    The world cannot understand the concepts taught in scripture - Paul is not speaking of grammer. In fact I Corinthians 14 makes God's opinion on grammer very clear.

    Just some food for thought.

    IFBReformer
     
  12. Dr. Bob

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    Appreciate the good spirit and interchange. Agree that anything more about "versions" should be on another thread in the appropriate forum.

    Always a good day when I can hold my head proudly about being an historic ifb'er! [​IMG]

    And rare. :rolleyes:
     
  13. mark

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    Dr. Bob, This is your second reference to being an historic ibf'er... what exactly do you mean by that term/phrase (obviously I know what ibf'er is).
     
  14. Squire Robertsson

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    From my perspective, there is nothing new about the movement you describe above. What you describe is a church in the conservative wing of the New Evangelicals.
     
  15. Pastor Larry

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    I exchanged PMs with the IFBReformer earlier. I hope he won't mind my saying that ... [​IMG] ... I know of the church and pastor he is talking about. I share his pedigree to a large degree. While I would disagree with this pastor on a few things, we would stand very much in the same line theologically speaking, having been trained at the same institutions. I would be curious to know if this pastor still claims to be a fundamentalist. I really have no idea so I am not being perjorative.

    I would probably tend more towards your description, Squire. But what I know of this man, he is a good man and a very good speaker. A large amount of his church growth some years ago took place while preaching expositorily through the book of Romans in 150+ messages. It blows the idea that you can't build a church on solid expository preaching. At some of these points, the line between a New Evangelical and a Fundamentalist is not altogether clear.

    Historically, I don't think music has been an issue of separation per se. It has been more the direction of a church or institution in which certain kinds of music have taken hold. Music was simply an indicator of other things in some cases, but not in all. THere are some solid fundamentalists who use music that many would disapprove of or be uncomfortable with. There are many new evangelicals who use high church and very conservative music. It is kind of a mixed bag.
     
  16. mesly

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    Squire, can you describe to me the differences between the two movements today? I thought that I used to know, but it seems that the lines are being blurred. I have to say that I cannot tell the difference anymore.
     
  17. Squire Robertsson

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    Well, let me try to tip toe through the land mines and booby traps of ecclesiastical political science. First, for a little historical perspective:</font>
    • Up until the 1890-190x, period, there was little debate amongst the Baptists about basic theological doctrines. We'd cut each other up about missions, Sunday Schools, the place of instrumental music in the worship service, a formally educated pastorate vs. one trained on the job., ect. But, questions about Bibliology, Christology, and other basic points of systematic theology (save the Particular vs. General split on soteriology) did not occur amongst the Baptists.</font>
    • However, beginning c. 1890, men began to posit that the old (orthodox) ways of thinking were out of sync with modern thought and science. This gave rise to the modernist movement.</font>
    • In reaction to the modernists, some of the brethren set down what had here to for been the commonly accepted points of doctrine in a set of publications called "The Fundementals". Hence they took the name Fundementalist.</font>
    • For the next forty or so years, men contended with each other. In the Thirties, Historic Baptists in the North began leaving the Northern Baptist Convention after they had lost several doctrinal votes on the convention floor. The brethren formed the GARBC. In the late Forties, a second wave separated from the NBC to form the Conservative Baptist Association.</font>
    • By the late Forties, the mainline denominations had been overtaken by modernism. Many of the orthodox/evangelical/fundemental brethren were beginning to wonder if there was still a place for them in their historic organizations.</font>
    • c.1946 Harold Okenga(sp?) wrote that those seperating were hurting the cause of Christ. And instead of separting, men needed to stay in and work from within the old organizations to retake them for Christ.</font>
    Your glasses are not dirty. The scene over the last fifty years has gotten a little muddled. The bottom line over the last 110 years in many situations and on many questions has been this non-original quote:
    vs a pragmatic outlook.
     
  18. MissAbbyIFBaptist

    MissAbbyIFBaptist
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    Ok, I'm IFB. I hold to the KJBO, because I beleive it's God's holy, inspired word, and dosn't need revising. I'm not trying to start a debate, but telling what I beleive to be true. I don't beleive I'm protestant. I don't know about other IFB's but my church trys to stay close to what the New Tesetement church was. Yes, we don't like contemperary stuff, but I veiw it as worldly, yet again, stating my opinion. {BTW, I'm from the south, and don't know what them up north hold to.} We don't wear pants to services {ladies that is} but many do outside of church. I don't because I have a personal conviction about it. We preach that it's right to tithe, but it's not forced on anyone. God wants a cheerful giver, not someone who does it because they feel like they have to. Yes we teach seperation. I beleive it's right, and that the Bible teaches it.
    But I don't beleive only Baptists are saved. Anyone can get saved. And just because you are Baptist dosn't mean you will go to HEaven either. I don't consider people that aren't Baptist second class Christians. If you're saved, you're just as valued to God as any of His children. Now that's not to say I agree to the doctrines of other denominations. Shesh, there's some Baptist groups I don't agree with on doctrine! :rolleyes:
    In my opinion, this church dosn't sound IFB. Sounds like a modern day time thing. The Bible says something about seeking the old paths. You can have your type of church if that's what you want, but I'm sticking with the old paths!
    ~Abby [​IMG]
     
  19. chargrove

    chargrove
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    Wow. I have learned more about all the different Baptist sects since I joined this board than I ever knew existed. It really blows my mind how varied the beliefs and traditions are, and how deeply ingrained it all is for people. I certainly have some fundamentalist leanings, but still find myself logically siding with the SBC's view of missions and outreach versus the peculiar IFB attitude that almost seems more concerned with self and not others.

    Now, before you draw and quarter me, what I mean is that the attitude that a lot of fundies project is that if you are not up to all of their provisional guidelines, then they feel the need to separate from you. Not every IFB'er is guilty here, so cool your jets, okay. But I dare anyone who's been one or been exposed to enough of it to disagree with me on this issue. I see it portrayed in the literature and from IFBs themselves continually. Certainly there is a point of separation, when you just can't fellowship and worship with someone who steadfastly disagrees with your church's interpretations of scripture. We are biblically instructed to do that. But I get the impression, and again I'm not labeling everyone, from a lot of IFB's that you are a lower class and hence unworthy to commune with them when they peg you for some sort of "liberal" believer or something. I dunno.

    Seems to me that the fields are ready for harvest (I heard that somewhere...)if the workers are truly ready and not sitting inside of rose-colored stained glass windows with the doors locked from within. The whole world is dying and you care about whether women wear pants or we put a moratorium on songs written after 1908 or how old your translation is or this or that or the next thing. Please.


    If I'm being mister hasty generalization, I would really like to be corrected, and am certainly willing to entertain ideas from anybody. Like I said, that's just my gut reaction to what I perceive, and I don't mean to etch it in stone. I love you guys.
     
  20. IfbReformer

    IfbReformer
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    chargrove,

    I appreciate your observations and agree to a point. I think many IFB churches have taken ecclesiatical seperation to an extreme the Bible does not take it.

    Yet no seperation leads to what many new evangelical churches are today - they don't know who they are or what they stand for - they are just a social club.

    But as my screen name implies - I do believe the IFB movement needs some reforming. It has moved in some directions that are wrong in my understanding of the scriptures. They have raised tradition to the same level as clear Biblical commands.

    As far as the missions view, in my opinion I think many SBC churches are a little slanted on missions. I have visted a few and from what I see their state and national mission convention is the most important thing.

    International missions is a good thing, but it is not the first mission of the church - local missions are.

    Look at Christ's priority for evangelism:
    Most people don't understand that there is an order in the great commission.

    Acts 1:8
    "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."

    What is the order:

    1. Jerusalem(your neheiborhood and city)
    2. Judea(Your state)
    3. Samaria(other states in your country)
    4. the ends of the earth(the rest of the world)

    So once you have a thriving local ministry that is permiating your city and state own country with the Gospel, then by all means support international missions.

    Sometimes though God will call someone from your church to a mission - to start another church in your state - thats great, and if your church can help so be it. But let the Holy Spirit be the one who prompts this and not missions conventions.


    Some churches have mixed up this order though - they start a brand new local church and cannot even afford to pay there Pastor full time and they are already trying to support international missions.

    I understand the motivation in some cases - because they have been taught that is what the Bible teaches - others though it is for show.

    "We have this many missionaries in this many countries"- they say. But how are they doing in their most important mission - right in their back yard?

    This not just a problem with the SBC though, I have been in IFB churches with the same inbalance.

    Just some thoughts

    IFBReformer
     

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