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Featured Do you think John the Baptist was the first Baptist?

Discussion in 'Baptist History' started by Alan Gross, Jan 23, 2023.

  1. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    Author: Do you think John the Baptist was the first Baptist?

    Reader: What kind of Baptist do you mean? Southern? American? Conservative? General? What do you mean by Baptist?

    A: I mean New Testament Baptist. Forget about twentieth-century Baptists for now. Was John the first New Testament Baptist, or the first baptizer? If he was not the first Baptist, who was?

    R: I have read that John copied the previous proselyte baptism. If so, he was not the first to baptize.

    A: But Jesus said, by implication, that John’s baptism was from heaven, even as His own authority came from heaven (Matthew:23-27). His critics could not say that John’s baptism was from men, or from a previous generation. Everything in this passage, as in Mark 11:27-33 and Luke 20:1-8, seems to say that John was the first baptizer, and therefore the first Baptist.

    R: If so, what of it? Why bother about John the Baptist? Why not pay more attention to the Lord Jesus?

    A: That is the point. Most people ignore what Christ said about John the Baptist. But Jesus praised John more than He praised any other person on earth. If we follow Christ, we will try to understand better what He said about John, why He commended him so highly, and what others say about John. If we become more like John we might have more of Christ’s approval.

    R: Now I get your message!

    The purpose of this book is not to boast about any Baptists. No effort is herein made to demonstrate a historical or chronological connection between contemporary Baptists and John. Rather, it is hoped to present a connection that is doctrinal, logical and Scriptural. Such a study should have lasting value.

    Briefly, the mission of this book is similar in purpose to the mission of John the Baptist. This book, we pray, will help—

    1. To prepare the "way of the Lord" (Luke 3:4).

    2. To make straight "a highway for our God" (Is. 40:3).

    3. To cause people to "behold the Lamb of God" (John 1:29).

    4. To make Christ manifest by explaining His baptism (John 1:31).

    5. To reveal the "glory of the Lord" (Is. 40:5).

    6. To restore the original meaning of "Baptist" (Luke 7:28-30).

    7. To win Christ’s approval (Matthew:11).

    Too long has John the Baptist been hidden by the Pedobaptist, dispensational and interdenominational accumulations of doctrine, once cherished by this writer.

    This book attempts to reclaim the entire New Testament as the birthright for every believer and the charter for every church.

    The rich soil of the four Gospels, including John the Baptist, provides rich nourishment for all Christians. As the tap-root gives strength to a mighty oak, so the inspiration of the life of John the Baptist can invigorate every person who takes him seriously. Christ honored him; dare we do less?

    Stanley E. Anderson

    continue this rich discussion, here
     
  2. kyredneck

    kyredneck Well-Known Member
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    He's the OT prophet that leveled mountains, raised valleys, and straightened highways,
     
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  3. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club
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  4. JPPT1974

    JPPT1974 Active Member
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    John was the forerunner of Christ bear in mind. He also was called that for he baptized people, including our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He was very radical for the cause of God. Wanting people to repent and baptize them to be anew and cleansed from sins to God through His Son!
     
  5. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club
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    but the question is: Was he the First Baptist?
     
  6. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    That's not saying much for The Holy Spirit of God.

    Just kidding. The label is not a hill to die on.

    Have you considered organizing your work into an Independent Landmark Baptist church?


    1. COLOSSIANS 2:8
      "Beware lest any man spoil
      you through philosophy and vain deceit,
      after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world,
      and not after Christ.


      9 Because in Him
      Dwells all the Fullness of the Godhead bodily."

      THE AUTHORITY of GOD to Baptise
      was Given to
      "a man Sent from God whose name was John,
      ...saying, I baptize with water."
      John 1:6; 26

      Luke 20:1b ff; "the chief priests and the scribes came upon Him with the elders, 2 And spoke {spake} unto Him, saying, Tell us, by what authority doest Thou these things? Or who is He that gave Thee this authority? 3And He answered, and said unto them, I will also ask you one thing; and answer Me: 4The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? 5And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; He will say, Why then believed ye him not? 6But and if we say, Of men; all the people will stone us; for they are persuaded that John was a prophet. 7And they answered that they could not tell from where {whence} it was. 8And Jesus said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things."

      Jesus Equated The Questioning of HIS AUTHORITY to The AUTHORITY of John to Baptise.

      There is a reason Jesus Walked 40 miles to be Baptized of John when plenty of other believers were around.

      And, for that matter, Jesus was Baptized by John and NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND.

      The Great Commission and Authority to Baptise was Given to The Organised, Assembled Apostles and believers Assembled as a church Jesus Founded, in CORPORATE CAPACITY.

      The Promise of Jesus; "I am with you always, even unto the end of the age {world}. Amen" was not Given exclusively to those in attendance, but The Great Commission and Authority to Baptise was Given to The Organised, Assembled Apostles and believers Assembled as a church Jesus Founded, in CORPORATE CAPACITY.

      8. THE GODHEAD in HIS CHURCHES.

      "And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart" (Acts 2:46);

      "Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour" (Acts 3:1),

      being supplemented by the teaching of the apostles, and by fellowship in prayer and the breaking of bread

      "And they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers" (Acts 2:42).

      The Organization was of gradual development according to emerging needs as when deacons were selected to serve tables so that the spiritual leaders might give themselves to the ministry of prayer and the word.

      "Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables. Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word" (Acts 6:2-4).


      Baptist churches come into being today somewhat after this manner.

      A group of believers in a community wish to become a church.

      The members in the conference will make this wish known to other churches, and these churches send messengers to counsel them in accomplishing their desire.

      For the sake of order and recognition these messengers will inquire into their belief, and if it is thought wise, the visitors endorse their articles of faith and recommend their constitution as an independent church.

      These visiting brethren do not organize the church. Since the church is to be self-governing it must of necessity and logically be self-constituted.


      And so those wishing to become a church enter into a covenant to that effect, and another church is born.

      The help from the outside is for the sake of order and fellowship and is not absolutely essential. (Note. See Introduction to this volume as to the belief of the Publisher and the organization of a new church.)


      From the Book of Acts and church epistles and also from the pastoral epistles we learn all that we need to know about the organized church.

      8. 2 The ORGANIZATION of The Churches Jesus Built. - 8. THE GODHEAD in HIS CHURCHES.



      This wonderful book asks some questions and gives the answers. It may be downloaded in .pdf or EPUB and populated in plain text to copy/ paste... ""The tri-lemma: or, Death by three horns"" ... "Is baptism in the Romish Church Valid?" ( Remebering that Protestant 'churches' came OUT of Romish ones)...
      By James Robinson Graves


      The tri-lemma

      Oct 21, 2018

    2. [​IMG]
      Alan GrossWell-Known Member
      DEFINITIONS OF DOCTRINE VOLUME III THE NEW TESTAMENT CHURCH C. D. Cole

      Download reference: http://www.grace-ebooks.com/library/C. D. Cole/CDC_Vol 3 Definitions of Doctrine.pdf
     
  7. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club
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    I am pastor of an independent Southern Baptist church
     
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  8. tyndale1946

    tyndale1946 Well-Known Member
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    Well I'll insert this here as far as the question is concerned and you tell me?... Brother Glen:)

    1 Corinthians 10: 1 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea;

    2 And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea;

    3 And did all eat the same spiritual meat;

    4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.
     
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  9. John of Japan

    John of Japan Well-Known Member
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    The only way John the Baptist is a Baptist is if being a Baptist means nothing more than baptizing by immersion. If one believes that it is the Baptist distinctives that makes one a Baptist, then good old John was not one. If all you have to do to be a Baptist is baptize by immersion, there are a ton of Baptists all through church history.

    'Nuff said! :Cool
     
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  10. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club
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    IMHO a person becomes a Baptist by joining a Baptist church
    John was not a member of a Baptist church
     
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  11. John of Japan

    John of Japan Well-Known Member
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  12. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club
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  13. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    "And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne. [6] And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days." Revelation 12:5,6

    D. ITS PERPETUITY. After Peter confessed his belief in Jesus as the Christ (Messiah of the Old Testament), Jesus told him that this truth was not taught him by any human being, but by "My Father which is in heaven" (Matt. 16:17).

    "And I say also unto thee, that thou art Peter (petros), and upon this rock (petra) I will build MY church; and the gates of hell (hades, the unseen realm of the dead) shall not prevail against it."

    In these words Jesus promised perpetuity to His church: it would not be swallowed up in death. This does not mean that no church will ever go out of existence, but that His institution would remain and always be found in churches.

    Many of the New Testament churches have ceased to exist, but there has never been a time when true churches ceased to exist.

    Our Lord provided for perpetuity when He gave the great commission to make disciples, baptize disciples, and teach them (disciples) .... "And, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world (age)" (Matt. 28:20).

    And until Christ returns there will be churches making and baptizing and teaching disciples.

    When Christ's saving work has been finished He will return in judgment, and the day of grace will be over.

    And who knows how soon this may be?

    from: DEFINITIONS OF DOCTRINE VOLUME III
    THE NEW TESTAMENT CHURCH C. D. Cole

    Download reference: http://www.grace-ebooks.com/library/C. D. Cole/CDC_Vol 3 Definitions of Doctrine.pdf


    But Jesus said, by implication, that John’s baptism was from heaven, even as His own authority came from heaven (Matthew:23-27).
     
    #13 Alan Gross, Jan 26, 2023
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2023
  14. John of Japan

    John of Japan Well-Known Member
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    True. So are you saying that John was a Baptist in the same sense we are, or not?

    I'm John and I'm a Baptist, but my authority comes through Christ in His Great Commission, and I'm not the forerunner of Christ. Seems like apples and oranges to me.
     
  15. John of Japan

    John of Japan Well-Known Member
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    Many years ago I decided to study the Scriptures about John and see if he was a Baptist like I was, so I took the statement on the Baptist Distinctives of my mission board, Baptist World Mission, and here's what I found. John only knew two out of these six.

    1. “The Bible as the sole authority of faith and practice.” John the Baptist definitely preached the Old Testament, but more than that, he preached a new message of repentance into the Kingdom of God (Matt. 3:1-2). He was a prophet with new revelation from God to prepare the way of the Messiah. Therefore it was just as much God’s revelation as the Old Testament was when he said, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).
    2. “The priesthood of the believer.” John did not teach the priesthood of the believer per se, because the Old Testament priesthood was still in force in his day. So, John was the greatest prophet of his age, but any church age believer is greater than he. “For I say unto you, Among those that are born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist: but he that is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he” (Luke 7:28).
    3. “The autonomy of the local church.” John prophesied when the local church did not yet exist. While he taught personal responsibility and ethics (Luke 3:10-14), he can hardly be said to have taught anything about the local church.
    4. “A regenerated church membership.” John definitely taught repentance and faith. However, once again, there were no local churches in his day. He would have agreed with the concept of a regenerated church membership if he could have, but it was impossible for him to do so.
    5. “The separation of church and state.” This is one Baptist distinctive that John would definitely agree with. In fact, he literally lost his head for prophesying against the ruler of Galilee, the immoral and evil Herod (Mark 6:27).
    6. “Two ordinances: baptism by immersion and the Lord’s Supper.” John most definitely believed and taught baptism by immersion (Luke 3:16), and he baptized Jesus by immersion (Matt. 3:16). However, he had no concept of the Lord’s Supper, or indeed of such a thing as ordinances for a local church.
     
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  16. John of Japan

    John of Japan Well-Known Member
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    So, the simple answer is, how could John be a Baptist since there were no Baptist churches or any other churches in his day??? (Kudos to Salty for saying a similar thing first.)
     
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  17. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    John the Baptist prepared the 'material' (Baptized Disciples, by the Athourity of God), from which Jesus BUILT His Kind of church.

    from: THE FIRST BAPTIST

    "The Baptist’s followers were good building blocks for the church Christ came to build (Matthew 16:18). As David "prepared abundantly before his death" the material for his son Solomon to use in building the temple, so John prepared abundantly for Christ’s greater temple, the churches. David gathered gold, silver, brass, iron, wood, onyx, marble and other precious stones, while his "people rejoiced, for that they offered willingly" (I Chron. 22:5; 29:9). David had said, "the house that is to be builded for the Lord must be exceeding magnifical, of fame and of glory throughout all countries."

    "John the Baptist was "sent from God" (John 1:6) to "make ready a people prepared for the Lord" (Luke 1:17). This was a big order indeed. Among the multitudes whom John prepared for the Lord were the twelve disciples (Acts 1:22) and at least some of the "five hundred brethren" who saw the resurrected Lord Jesus (1 Cor. 15:6). That the total number was immense is indicated by the vast crowds who came to him, believed his message about Christ, and then were baptized by him (Matthew 3:5, 6). If Christian workers now had the spirit and power of John the Baptist, and if they used his techniques, they could also prepare multitudes for the Lord.
     
  18. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    "WHAT WERE JOHN’S DISCIPLES TAUGHT TO BELIEVE?

    "A surprising number of Christian doctrines were first declared by John the Baptist, and repeated by his disciples. They are still believed by true Christians. Some doubted then; some will always doubt—to their loss.

    1. John the Baptist taught the deity of Christ (John 1:29, 34, 36). This doctrine is foundational; it is fundamental; it is essential to Christians. Like the North Star for navigators, the Deity of Christ is the reference and correction point for Christian thinkers. All other doctrines must line up with this. John set the pattern here for all Christians of all ages.

    2. John declared the pre-existence of Christ (John 1:15, 30), "he was before me." John was born first, and began preaching first, but yet Jesus was before him in His preincarnate state. This involves the whole matter of the Virgin Birth of Christ, even though John did not mention it specifically. But how could Christ have existed before John unless the records in Matthew and Luke regarding His Virgin Birth are true?

    3. John the Baptist taught his disciples about the Holy Spirit (Matthew 3:11; Mark 1:8; Luke 3:16; John 1:33). These verses are given in parallel form in Acts 1:5 and 11:16. In every case it is said that Christ should baptize believers IN (Greek, en), not with, by or of, the Holy Spirit. Never is the Holy Spirit said to baptize anyone. First Corinthians 12:13 may be cited, but the word "by" should be "in" here also; it is in the Greek original. (Some scholars believe 1 Corinthians 12:13 refers to water baptism, with good reason). Since the first six verses cited above all clearly say that Christ baptizes in the Holy Spirit, it could not be right to make 1 Corinthians 12:13 mean otherwise. Christ did baptize believers at Pentecost. Some believe He does it now at the moment of regeneration. Filling is another matter; it may be repeated, or it may never really come to some people. (The author’s Your Baptism Is Important devotes an entire chapter to Spirit baptism.)

    4. John taught the sovereignty of God (Matthew 3:9). "God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham." Since God can do that, He can do lesser things. No one could tell John, "Your God is too small."

    5. John taught the Kingdom of Heaven (Matthew 3:2, etc.). This kingdom was in contrast to worldly ways of living, to materialism, to secularism, and to all other false "isms." (Dr. R. G. Lee said that all these isms ought to be wasms!) The kingdom of heaven implies a separation from the kingdoms of this world which are too largely controlled by the evil one.

    6. The first word of record from John is "Repent!" It means, Be converted from your former worldly, sinful, selfish self-centered ways, and be conformed to the principles of the kingdom of heaven and its great King. It is the word Christ used when He began preaching (Matthew 4:17). It has the same meaning to all classes of people: to the woman of Samaria who was a notorious sinner, and to Nicodemus who was a respected ruler of the Jews. Perhaps the greatest tragedy of Christendom is that many unconverted people have joined churches and have thus introduced worldliness and false doctrines into them. Every church should examine each candidate for membership with great care, lest evil creep in unawares (Jude 4).

    7. John emphasized the need for confession of sins (Matthew 3:6). He may have given sermons based on Psalm 32 which says that forgiveness brings happiness (vv. 1, 2); guilt means misery until confessed (vv. 3, 4) confession brings relief (vv.. 5-11). After confession our prayers are heard (v. 6); our safety is assured (v. 7) our way is made plain (v. 8); our self-respect is restored (v. 9); our Lord shows His mercy, vs. 10; and our joy is endless (v. 11).

    8. John taught the propriety of baptism, by example and precept (Matthew 3:6). Since he refused baptism to unrepentant sinners, we may assume that he baptized only those who showed real evidence of conversion. And since John was filled with the Holy Spirit, he had the gift of discernment. He could tell who was sincere and who was not. He could baptize immediately after conversion instead of waiting through a testing period as seems necessary now. But if anyone should be mistakenly "baptized" before his real conversion, as this writer was, he should be really baptized after he has assurance of salvation. The example of those in Acts 19:1-7 is authority for this practice.

    con't
     
  19. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    9. John taught the inevitability of judgment (Matthew 3:7, 12). God does not "tear up the ticket" as a traffic court judge might do. The fine must be paid. Law and order must finally prevail in the universe. But since God loves all sinners, He sent His son to pay the fine for us. When any sinner receives Christ as Saviour and Lord, then his record is clear, his name is inscribed in the Lamb’s book of life, his soul is cleansed, and he has a ticket to heaven. But such a person must keep on judging his own sins in order to prove the genuineness of his conversion (1 John 1:7; 2:19).

    10. John taught that each individual is responsible for his own soul (Matthew 3:9). No one can trust in his godly mother or father or wife or husband for saving his soul. Each person must repent for himself and be baptized on his own volition. Baby baptism can be extremely harmful since it may give a person a false sense of security; it usually means that he will never be baptized properly if and when he is converted. Infant baptism has no sanction, example or authorization in the Bible. This is not to say that unimmersed believers are not good moral Christians. They may well be, but certainly they would be better satisfied with baptism if they followed the teaching of John and Christ.

    11. John the Baptist taught the supremacy of Christ (Matthew 3:11, 12). Only He can baptize believers in the Holy Spirit. Only He can separate the chaff from the wheat. Christ only is Lord; we have no human viceroy who can take His place; we need not obey any usurper, or bow down to anyone else.

    12. John preached the cleansing work of the Holy Spirit, as purifying fire (Matthew 3:11). When the Holy Spirit comes into a believer’s heart, He wants all unholy thoughts out. When a believer seeks to be filled with the Spirit, as he is commanded to be (Eph. 5:18), he must put all worldly trash into the fire. Fire is a cauterizing, sterilizing and purifying agent. As a type of the Holy Spirit it is apropos.

    13. The need for good conduct was stressed by the Baptist (Luke 3:8, 10-14). A Christian has no room for hypocrisy, or for ignorance as to what sinful conduct is. Holding to the absolute Lordship of Christ, a believer must obey Him. All his "members" —hands, feet, mouth—must be yielded to God as "instruments of righteousness" (Rom. 6:11-19).

    14. By his own example, John taught the need of being faithful unto death (Matthew 14:1-10). His baptism suggested such fidelity, for baptism signifies one’s belief in life after death. The person baptized, while under the surface of the water, is temporary as dead, and when he rises from the water it is like a resurrection.

    15. By example again, John showed the need for sound Scriptural preaching (John 1:15-36). John quoted Isaiah (40:3) in John 1:23, even as Christ and Paul quoted much from the Old Testament. Since the Holy Spirit inspired the writing of both Testaments (John 14:26; 1 Cor. 14:37; 2 Peter 1:21), then any Christian who is submissive to the Spirit will respect the whole Bible as inspired of God (2 Tim. 3:16).

    16. John exhibited the grace of humility (Matthew 3:11, 14; John 1:15, 23; 3:27-30). Here is the mark of truly great persons: they are so intent on doing their work well, in serving others, in obeying orders, that they have no time or desire to advertise themselves. John was "all out" for his Lord. In giving his life to honor his Lord, he himself was greatly honored. And if a Christian does not receive honor in this life, he will have enough reward in heaven to do him for eternity. We have no business seeking honor now. Our orders are to honor Christ instead.

    17. John taught his disciples to pray (Luke 11:1). They must have liked that teaching, for some of them asked Jesus for more of it. Prayer is important enough for us to study its elements; it deserves concentrated attention. The best Christians appreciate it most. Lord, teach us to pray.

    18. John taught and preached the Gospel of Christ (Luke 3:18). The word used here, euangelizato, is the same word that is used for preaching the Gospel elsewhere in the New Testament. Those fortunate people who were in the Baptist’s school of prayer and preaching would be well equipped to carry on Gospel work wherever they went. Christendom today needs more seminary professors who will train young preachers in the methods and message of John the Baptist. Then Christ would be glorified and sinners converted to Him. For it must be repeated that John prepared people for his Lord. The New Testament does not say that he taught philosophy, or sociology, or political science, or contemporary theology (an obsession with many!), or economics, or anything but the Gospel of Christ. Perhaps our contemporary ministers need to know much of the above subjects, but they should not crowd out or displace the Gospel.

    All of the eighteen items listed above are Christian. They are parts of Christian theology. They comprise John the Baptist; they define him. This list is not complete; more will be added later. Luke 3:18 says "many other things in his exhortation preached he unto the people." But the list of doctrines is surprisingly long as it is. John was a thorough preacher. And while it is true that later New Testament preachers added more subjects, such as a church, communion, missions, stewardship, the second coming of Christ, etc., they did not alter or omit anything which John preached so faithfully.

    The converts of John, then, were well-instructed believers in Christ. They were thoroughly saved by faith in Him and they were eagerly expecting further blessings from Him. They comprised a large part of the multitudes who heard Christ gladly on many occasions after John’s voice had been silenced."

    from: THE FIRST BAPTIST
     
  20. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    I believe our church's Authority comes from John's Baptism.

    "
    "Having been buried with him in the baptism in which also ye were raised with (him) through the faith of the energy of the God, the one having raised him from the dead." (Colossians 2:12, literal translation.)



    Our text describes the one baptism of the New Testament authorized as a continuing ordinance of God. First administered by the first Baptist on direct command from heaven, it was continued under the direction of Jesus by the disciples constituting the first Baptist church, and finally committed to that same church for administration to the end of the age. "The baptism of John, whence was it? from heaven, or of men?. . ." (Matthew 21:25.) A right answer to this question must lead to a recognition of the authority of Jesus as Head of His church, even as Jewish priests and elders reasoned long ago."

    Authority in the Baptism, A Sermon by Rosco Brong

    ...

    I believe The Lord's Kind of churches were Promised a Continual Existence, from the Time Jesus Organized and Commissioned what He Called, "My church".


    "The church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth"
    I Timothy 3:15

    Recorded history often reveals more of historians' prejudices than of actual events, and the history of Christianity has been written mostly by the enemies of Baptists. Even so, there is historical evidence for the continued existence of what would now be called Baptist churches from the days when Jesus was on earth in the flesh down to the present time. This evidence is not beyond dispute but it is more than sufficient if we are willing to believe the promises of God's Word.

    My purpose here is to show from the Bible, APART FROM ALL HISTORICAL EVIDENCE, that we must believe in Baptist church perpetuity if we believe that God's Word is true.


    1. THE GATES OF HADES
    [His Promise of Perpetuity]

    "Upon this Rock," said Jesus, referring to Himself, "I will build my church; and the gates of hell [Hades] shall not prevail against it" [Matthew 16:18].

    We may find various interpretations of this statement of Jesus, but despite a great variety of ideas in detailed interpretation, it is fairly clear to all that we have here a PROMISE of our Lord that His church would not be overcome by the powers of evil. Whatever this church was, it could not fail if Jesus spoke the truth.

    We believe that this church was what would now be called a Baptist church, and anyone who will honestly examine the organization and doctrines of this New Testament institution in comparison with the organization and doctrines of Baptist churches today will reach the same conclusion (defined in the next post).

    If the church that Jesus built was not a Baptist church, then we need to find out what kind of church it was, and join that church, if we want our service to be pleasing to Him.

    One thing we can be sure of: if Jesus spoke the truth -- and what real Christian would deny this? -- the church that Jesus built has been in the world ever since and will be here till He comes again.

    The popular Protestant dogma in this connection speaks of an "invisible" church to which all Christians belong. More on this as we go along, but for the present note a few simple facts:

    a. Neither the expression "invisible church" nor the idea of such an expression can be found in the New Testament.

    b. The whole purpose of the "invisible church" dogma is to justify the Protestant splits from Roman Catholicism. But since Baptists are not Protestants and were never a part of the heretical Catholic system, we have no need of any such dogma to justify our existence.

    c. Most Protestants and many ignorant Baptists suppose that Christ built two churches; that is, two kinds of churches: the "invisible church" of their own vain imagining and the organized assemblies that they cannot help recognizing in the New Testament. Then, to add insult to injury, they call their imaginary monstrosity the "true" church! But the Bible says there is only one body (church), that is, one kind of body, just as there is only one baptism, that is, one kind of baptism [Ephesians 4:4-5].

    d. Since there is no just reason to do otherwise, we must understand that Jesus used the word, "church" [Greek "ekklesia] in Matthew 16:18 in the same general sense that it has everywhere else in the New Testament: that is, an assembly, almost always an organized assembly. The word here is used abstractly; that is, it expresses an idea whose realization is to be found in a particular organized assembly.

    Rosco Brong Sermon, Baptist Perpetuity

    ...

    I believe there is undeniable Historical Evidence to support Baptist-like churches, like the Kind of Church that Jesus Built, since His Founding of the first during His Ministry.

    http://baptisthistoryhomepage.com/hisel.baptist.histry.ntbk.html

    The Church That Jesus Built

    ...

    I believe any 'gaps' in our Historical Record are filled by the Historical statement of fact, "Revelation 12:6 And the woman fled into the wilderness ...
    https://biblehub.com › revelation

    "The woman (the Lord's churches) fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that there they may nourish her one thousand two hundred sixty days (the church Age)."

    ...
    I believe Rome and Protestants and Reformed Baptists have no such Authority.

    https://books.googleusercontent.com...kvwWF8NLz9wIaSz1Rp48krt62qQL_VzNpaTMDMbMaYk-E
     
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