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Featured Supernatural Self-Perpetuating Divine Design Ensures church Succession.

Discussion in 'Baptist History' started by Alan Gross, Feb 11, 2023.

  1. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    Supernatural Self-Perpetuating Divine Design
    ensures church succession,

    under the Superintendence of The Holy Spirit,

    i.e., Another Comforter.

    New Testament Church Succession pg 17

    A. Organic Link to Link Contact:

    Organic link-to-link contact cannot be successfully repudiated if we take the commission at face value. In fact, there is no other possible way that such a commission could be administered but by an organic link-to-link contact in time and space.

    It is impossible for the Great Commission to be administered without direct “hands-on” contact ... the second and third aspects of the commission require actual physical contact between “ye” and “them” in carrying out this commission. Baptism was a physical “hands-on” connection...


    Furthermore, teaching “them” required actual assembling together with “them” over a period of time in order to accomplish the goal of “teaching them to observe all things….commanded.”



    B. Natural Cycle of Succession:


    Does the third aspect of this commission command “them” to observe all things whatsoever Christ commanded? Obviously! Does this include observing this commission as a New Testament Church? Who would deny that?

    Notice that the very nature of this commission

    is a NATURAL CYCLE of reproduction after its own kind:

    “GO….baptizing….teaching” which demands them to
    “GO…..baptizing….teaching” which demands them to
    “GO…baptizing…teaching them…etc. etc.

    Then, Like begets like.

    Church Succession is by Supernatural Self-Perpetuating Divine Design


    pg. 18

    C. Supernatural Promise of Day in and Day out Succession until the end of the Age:

    “and, lo, I am with you always, even until the end of the world. Amen.” Literally, the Greek says“all the days until the end of the age.”Greek scholars say this is an idiom that means “day in and day out” until the end of the age

    (William Hendriksen, New Testament Commentary, Matthew,
    Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Mich. p. 1003).

    Christ is promising His day-in and day-out presence until the end of the world for the very purpose of carrying out this kind of successive historical link by link organic cycle of like faith and order.


    (Like faith and order begets like faith and order.)

    The gates of hell shall never prevail against His church simply because He remains with it providentially making sure that this“ye” continues
    “day in and day out” reproducing like faith and order until the end of the world.

    This is why Jude says the faith was“ONCE delivered”–Jude 3.


    This means that the KIND of churches found in the New Testament not only continued to reproduce after their own kind in the apostolic age but did so also after the apostolic age into every generation up to the present generation.

    To deny this is to demand that Christ lied and in addition to lying, He failed to be with them“always, even unto the end of the age.”

    To deny this is to claim the gates of hell did prevail against His church. To deny this is to edit from the commission the prequalified “ye” at some point in time between the apostolic age and the present and demand that “them” is authorized to self-administer this commission in order to restart it.

    No one has the authority to edit the “ye” from this commission at ANY TIME.

    If this “ye” at some point in history ceased to exist, died out, then this leaves only one option: God had to violate His own Word and directly authorize those identified as “them” to resume the Great Commission.

    However, the promise of AGE LONG CONTINUITY found in the Great Commission denies that possibility altogether, as the object of this promise is the prequalified “ye” rather than the unqualified “them” found in the Great Commission.


    To say that it did cease to exist
    is to say that Christ did not keep His promise to His kind of church.


    Therefore, it is impossible to deny organic link to link church succession without editing out and denying what Matthew 28:19-20 clearly states and promises.

    pg 15 ...the text demands they are an AGE LONG existing “ye”.

    Christ promises that He will be with this “you” until the end of the age.

    If this “you” is considered as individuals, most died before the end of that century, much less the end of the world.

    Christ could not have given this commission to them as individuals.

    Christ could only have given them this as representatives of something that could and would continue until the end of the age.

    JESUS' KIND of DIVINE CHURCH ORGANIZATION HE FOUNDED.
     
  2. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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  3. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    I actually disagree here.

    The reason is it assumes a Catholic understanding of the nature of "church".

    This doesn't mean that I believe there was ever a time post resurrection when churches did not exist.

    It means that I believe God builds His church rather than churches begetting churches generationally.

    How it looks on the ground is God saving men and these men forming a congregation.
     
  4. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    Are you saying that you believe, in "succession of the first century New Testament documents", that "The Bible" document is the "sole" thing God Preserved?
     
  5. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    We believe The Bible Teaches JESUS' KIND of DIVINE CHURCH ORGANIZATION HE FOUNDED is the exact opposite of a Catholic understanding of the nature of "church".

    C.D. COLE VOLUME #3- THE DEFINITION OF CHURCH

    "The New Testament never speaks of one particular assembly or church as a part of the whole, but of each assembly as "the whole church." In #1Co 14:23, Paul says, "If therefore the whole church be come together into one place..."

    Writing to the Romans from Corinth, in his closing salutation, Paul says, "Gaius mine host, and of the whole church, saluteth you" (#Ro 16:23).

    Speaking of the church under the metaphor of the human body, #1Co 12:27, Paul says "Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular." The article is absent in the Greek. The same is true when the church is represented under the figure of a temple.

    The church at Corinth is called "the temple of God" in #1Co 3:16 and also in #2Co 6:16. In the second chapter of Ephesians the church is in view under the figure of a building or temple.

    Local congregations are in view in #Eph 2:21; "In whom (Christ) all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple (sanctuary) in the Lord."

    In #Eph 2:22 the church at Ephesus is referred to: "In whom (Christ) ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit."

    We have given the correct text in these quotations.

    In #Eph 3:21 "Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen."

    ...A man once said to B. H. Carroll, "How dare you apply such broad terms as `the house of God, '`the body of Christ', and `the temple of God, 'to your little fragment of a denomination!"

    Carroll replied: "I do not apply them to any denomination, nor to any aggregate of particular churches, but the scriptures do apply every one of them to the particular congregations of Christ's disciples."


    "..the New Testament nowhere
    speaks of the ‘Universal, Catholic, or Invisible Church’"

    The Nature of the Church
    Matthew 16:18 by Dan Cozart

    "My assigned subject is “The Nature of the Church”. My text is Matthew 16:18. It is here that our Lord speaks of entering into a building program and He is careful to tell us what He will be building......”I will build my church”.

    This implies that there was no church prior to this time. There was no church in the Old Testament. It is to be found only in the New Testament. It is also clear that it is a church that He is building.

    He did not say He would be building a Kingdom Hall....a Tabernacle....a Temple....the Salvation Army....the Promise Keepers....the Gideons....a Fellowship....a Synagogue....a Denomination....a Convention...a Chapel....the Family of God or the Kingdom.

    What He did say is that He Would Build His Church!

    Historically, there are three major views of the church.

    (1) The Roman Catholic View This view states that the church is a universal and visible assembly. This System allows a worldwide, universal organization with headquarters in Rome where the Pope rules over this universal and visible church.

    (2) The Protestant View This view states that the church is a universal and invisible assembly referred to as “the body of Christ”. Protestants were forced either to accept Catholic baptism as valid or admit they made a mistake in leaving the Catholic system. So, they agreed the church was universal, but could not continue with Rome being the visible head. Therefore, they invented the term “invisible church”.

    (3) The Biblical View This view teaches the church to be a local and visible assembly. Baptist scholars have supported this view down through the ages with conviction.

    B.H. Carroll, Ephesians, page 166: “The whole of the modern Baptist idea of a now ‘universal, invisible church’ was borrowed from Pedo-Baptist confessions of faith in the Reformation times, and the PedoBaptists devised it to offset the equally erroneous idea of the Romanist ‘universal, visible church’.”

    Arthur Pink, Studies in the Scriptures, December 1927: “Now the kind of church which is emphasized in the New Testament is neither invisible nor universal; but instead, visible and local. The Greek word for ‘church’ is ecclesia, and those who know anything of that language are agreed that the word signifies ‘an assembly’. Now, an assembly is a company of people who actually assemble. If they never assemble, then it is a misuse of language to call them ‘an assembly’. Therefore, as all of God’s people never have yet assembled together, there is today no universal church.”

    Jesse B. Thomas, The Church and the Kingdom, page 275: “A church universal, composed to a disintegrated, unorganized throng of members of all the churches is from the functional point of view inconceivable. How could an indistinguishable, unrecognizable company of God’s elect, the invisible church, serve either the one purpose of a church or the other?”

    J.R. Graves, Why Be A Baptist?, page 47 “The two essential ideas in the word ekklesia are assembly and organization. Every illustration of a church in the New Testament, such as temple or house or body, makes the veriest nonsense if it is not assembled and organized. The etymology of the word ekklesia makes it of necessity a local church.”

    Thomas Armitage, History of Baptists, pages 188-120 “In the apostolic age the church was a local body, and each church was independent of every other church. The simple term ecclesia designates one congregation, or organized assembly, this being its literal and primal meaning........it follows then, that the New Testament nowhere speaks of the ‘Universal, Catholic, or Invisible Church’, as indicating a merely ideal existence, separate from a real and local body. A local church fully expresses the meaning of the word ecclesia wherever it is found in Holy Writ.”

    S.H. Ford, Brief Baptist History, page 95 “It should be remembered that by church, Baptists mean what the New Testament teaches....a local, real congregation of baptized believers united together for God’s service.”

    This is the human side of the mechanism invented by Divine Design that I tried to article from these secondary sources, as being Supernatural Self-Perpetuating,
    under the Superintendence of The Holy Spirit, when I posted,

    https://www.pbcofdecaturalabama.org/pdf/TheGreatCommissionCredentials.pdf

    "...there is no other possible way that such a commission could be administered but by an organic link-to-link contact in time and space.

    It is impossible for the Great Commission to be administered without direct “hands-on” contact...".
     
  6. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    This is a supposed "Succession Pedigree", of how I believe this process has worked on the ground, like you said, since Jesus Founded His Kind of church.

    It is entirely possible, to me, for The Holy Spirit to have accomplished this, and I believe He certainly did, similarly, to His Own "habitation of God through the Spirit", however, there is no way that there are documents that could be produced to "prove" these statements, from a genuine historian's view.

    There are others I have seen that are plausible. I believe my church had one.
    This is how it works. And without substantiated historical records to "prove" it, which are not necessary, at all. I believe the Bible is on it. I'll probably post a "Sussecion from the Scriptures" type article. The Bible is what I trust on the subject.



    "The Hillcliff church in Wales, England may be one of the oldest bodies of Christians in the world. It most certainly dates beyond the 9th century A. D. I am told that it still has regular services.

    It must be remembered that the early records of the church were destroyed in the Dark Ages. However, there are records in the ancient graveyard that testify of an early age.

    On page 6 Davis in the History of the Welsh Baptists gives the origin of the Welsh Baptists in this way.

    "In A. D. 63 while Paul was Prisoner at Rome. A Welsh lady and her husband. whose name was Pudens, visiting in Rome were converted under Paul's preaching. They are referred to in Acts 28:30 and II Tim. 4:21.

    These people carried the gospel into Wales." (pp 16 Baptist Churches In All Ages by Ben M. Bogard).

    Roy Mason in his book The Church That Jesus Built quotes some valuable historical information on page 110.

    I will start with the information on the Hillcliff church.

    "Link Three, Hillcliff church was organized by Aaron Arlington A. .D. 987. See Alex Munston's Israel of the Alps. p.39.

    Link Four. Lima Piedmont church ordained Aaron Arlington in 940. See Jones' Church History . p. 324.

    Link Five. Lima Piedmont church was organized by Balcolao. A. D. 812. See Neander's Church History. Vol. 2 p. 320.

    Link Six. Balcolao came from the church at Timto, Asia Minor. See Neander's Church History, Vol. 2, p.320.

    Link Seven Timto church was organized by Archer Flavin. A. D. 738. See Mosheim's History. Vol. 1, p.394.

    Link Eight. Archer Flavin came from the Darethea church. organized by Adromicus, A. D. 671, in Asia Minor. See Lambert 's Church History. p. 47.

    Link Nine. Adromicus came from Pontifossi. at the foot of the Alps in France. See Lambert's Church History. p. 47.

    Link Ten. Pontifossi church was organized by Tellestman from Turan, Italy, A. D. 398. See Nowlin's Church History, p. 182.

    Link Eleven. Turan church was organized be Tertull from Bing Joy. Africa, A. D. 237. See Armitage's Church History, p. 182.

    Link Twelve. Tertullan was a member of the Partus church at the foot of the Tiber, that was organized by Polycarp, A. D. 150. Sec Cyrus' Commentary of Antiquity, p. 924.

    Link Thirteen, Polycarp was baptized by John the Beloved or Revelator on the twenty-fifth of December, A. D. 95. See Neander's Church History, p. 285.

    Link Fourteen. John was with Jesus on the Mount. Mark 3:13-14: Luke 6:12-13.”
     
  7. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    I understand the idea of trying to produce a succession of churches. But as you mention, it is impossible to produce a definitive succession that would be considered factual.

    Since churches are not dependent on having come from another church, or even Christian community, I see no benefit in the idea.

    I have read many ideas of Baptist succession (my thesis was on RBC Howell and JR Graves). While Landmarkism points to common beliefs throughout history, they also ignore significant differences (mode of baptism, additional "essential doctrines", doctrines of Atonement, etc.).

    Ultimately Landmarkism seems to be an unprovable theory that has no relevance to churches.
     
  8. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    From the dependance on history alone, right.

    Doesn't seem to, from what we see looking around, especially with more and more being filled with Easy Believism lost people, or "liberals", if you want to say that.

    Unless, we look to God and His Word.

    Daniel 9:24; "and to anoint the most Holy."

    I believe Pentecost meant more to Him than a one an done show.
     
  9. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    No. From history (there is no proof) and from Scripture (Scripture indicates that the Apostolic churches held different doctrines to the extent some were condemning others - but the same gospel).
    That is my point. Pentecost was not one and done (true churches are made when people are saved and form a congregation - not from churches dependent on descending from the church formed in Jerusalem at Pentecost).
     
  10. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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    No. Only the New Testament documents teachings are the sole original Apostolic teachings handed down for the Body of Christ, His Church, and churches. Baptist succession are in those documents.
     
  11. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    For clarification (remember, I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed):

    Are you saying that there have always been Baptists like us or that Baptist doctrine (the Baptist distinctives) has always existed and have been practiced in some form throughout history (as they are biblical)?
     
  12. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    I'm looking through your list and wanted to pause at Tertullan (because of those you list I have studied Tertullan, and am not familiar with some of the latter men).

    Did Tertullan hold Baptist views?

    He did believe that infants (and unmarried people) should not be baptized. BUT his reason was to prevent sinning after baptism which, in his view, would result in a loss of salvation.

    That was a very common view at the time (even some church leaders put off baptism until their deathbed to prevent sinning after baptism).

    In practice, he could be seen to hold a Baptist view in that he frowned on infant baptism. But his theology was not Baptist.

    Also, while it is true that John was with Jesus and Polycarp was a student of John, John did not start a church.
     
  13. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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    What I am saying is the New Testament teachings upon what we now call Baptist has been handed down by way of said documents. They transcend the misinterpretations of men. So they with the whole written word of God remain as the sole final authority in all matters of the faith and it's practice. These 66 books.

    That's why I had decided to be identified as Baptist - not merely Christian in 1966. I was lead to Christ and taught the faith in a Baptist church beginning in 1962.
     
    #13 37818, Feb 12, 2023
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2023
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  14. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    Thank you for explaining. :Thumbsup
     
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  15. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    been completed sometime after his apologetic works and before (or along with) the beginning of his disciplinary and theological works. This would also be before his Montanist conversion. See Evans, Baptism, xi. - Google Search

    "On Baptism had been completed sometime after his apologetic works and before (or along with) the beginning of his disciplinary and theological works.

    This would also be before his Montanist conversion.

    See Evans, Baptism, xi."

    I don't know when and if he continued to hold the view to baptism and die before you sin, greatly.

    Dunno.

    Baptist History Notebook, By Berlin Hisel

    Berlin Hisel was a great teacher of mine.

    Montanists

    "Many of them suffered. Tertullian tells of many who were martyred.

    (Alan's note: for some "heretic" reason strong enough to kill them over)

    As in our quote from Dr. Christian, "The crown of life was martyrdom."

    This would not have been said unless many of them died.

    The Martyrs Mirror
    records some of their persecutions.

    [p. 44]
    Some of them, no doubt, held to some things we would shy away from.

    That is true of some Baptists today.

    They were for the most part, churches of like principles with us today.

    We claim them in the line of our heritage.

    ...
    Sylvester Hassell writes of these people: "The chief opposition to the Alexandrian School and to Gnosticism and to the substitution of philosophy for Christianity was, in the second century, made by those called the Montanists, of whom Tertullian became, in the third century, the ablest writer.

    They took their name from Montanus, a native of Phrygia in Asia Minor, and were hence also called Cataphrygians, and Pepuzians, from Pepuza in Phrygia.

    They sought to emphasize the great importance of the spirituality and purity of the church and especially the absolute indispensability of the work of the Holy Ghost and the dispensableness of human philosophy."5

    Who cannot see herein, men of Baptist principles?

    A spiritual and pure church speaks of a regenerated church membership.

    This opposed to infant baptism and to baptismal regeneration.


    This is a Baptist distinctive. Baptists have always preached that the power of the Holy Spirit is needed in the salvation of sinners and the building of churches.

    Others believe that human wisdom can accomplish these things.

    It seems, to me, that these folks believed what true churches believe."

    " I think most Baptists see the difference between the Holy Spirit dwelling in a believer and in the Holy Spirit empowering the church on the day of Pentecost.

    It seems to me that Montanus felt he was a teacher in the true church, empowered in a special way to teach the truth.

    Churches (true churches) have the Holy Spirit in a special way.*

    True churches have the truth, so the best place to hear the truth is in a true church."**

    *"A habitation of God through the Spirit."

    ** "The pillar and ground of the truth".

    If one may be blessed to believe JESUS' church He built being local assemblies only, that remain from His first one until today, then it is possible to believe these scriptures.

    To believe He built two kinds of churches blows it and those scriptures are meaningless.
     
  16. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    Yea, Tultullian did become a heretic when he changed to Montanism. But we are talking about a 3 to 6 year period here (between writing On Baptism and abandoning orthodox Christianity). It is reasonable to believe He maintained that view even after abandoning Orthodoxy.

    My point is that Landmarkism assumes a very weak standard of doctrine of those they claim to be ancestor churches (for example, most Landmark churches affirm the Penal Substitution Theory of Atonement, and insist it is essential, but most ancient churches they reference as previous true churches did not hold that view....another example, there is mo evidenceTertullanheld Baptist views).
     
  17. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    As you may know, about:
    THE CHURCH

    "Our people steadfastly maintain that a New Testament church is a local and visible congregation of baptized believers (Acts 2:41-47).

    Every true church is the body of Christ in its locality (1 Corinthians 12:27).

    The church did not begin with Adam or on the first Pentecost after the resurrection of Christ, nor at the time of the Protestant Reformation.

    The New Testament church was organized by Jesus Christ during His personal ministry on earth out of the material prepared by John the Baptist (Matthew 16:18).

    That would be the Disciples that John baptized with Authority from God, not to mention Jesus Who walked 60 miles to be baptized with Authority from God, by John.

    Jesus began to "build" His kind of Organized assembly by bringing together those who had been Scripturally baptized.


    "Since the days of Christ, the world has never been without a true church.

    God's witnesses.

    We teach that the principles and practices of the New Testament continued even during the Dark Ages because the gates of Hell never prevailed against the church (Matthew 16:18)."

    Meanwhile, do you believe the Bible teaches two churches?

    "Our people detest and despise the Protestant doctrine of a universal, invisible church.

    This false theory began in post-apostolic times among spiritualizers of the Scriptures.

    It was popularized at the Protestant Reformation.

    It has gained ascendancy in our time by means of the Scofield Reference Bible, Fundamentalism, and the New Evangelicalism.

    Despite its worldly popularity, to us the universal, invisible church theory is an inconceivable conception, an unsupportable supposition, and an unspeakable superstition."
     
  18. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    And was enough to get your head cut off.

    This is partly why I say it is a Supernatural Self-Perpetuating Divine Design Ensures church Succession.

    A spiritual and pure church speaks of a regenerated church membership.

    Baptists have always preached that the power of the Holy Spirit is needed in the salvation of sinners, (Jesus Bought His Regenerated Congregations with His Own Blood) to add them to their local churches and for the edifying, teaching all things commanded, in the continuous building of the Lord's
    kind of churches.

    No "universal" myth to it.
     
  19. JonC

    JonC Moderator
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    If you mean the word “ecclesia” (sppears 117 times in the NT and typically translated "church" or "churches") then no, I do not believe there are only two.

    People (myself included) will often use "Church" interchangeably with "the Bride" (all Christians of all times). But biblically there are numerous churches and these churches often found themselves at odds with one another over manners of doctrine. The church in Jerusalem held doctrines that differed from the church in Rome, and the church in Galiatia worshipped differently than the church in Corinth.
     
  20. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

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    See: Wendell H. Rone, Sr. The Problem of Baptist Succession

    How Many And What Baptist Principles Must A People Possess In Order To Entitle Them To Be Called Baptists?

    How Far May A Church Depart From The New Testament Pattern Before It Ceases To Be A New Testament Church?
     
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