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Baptist Response To Church Essays


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Its a common Evangelical belief -- totally wrong but still common. They hang everything on the inerrancy of the Bible because that all they have.

I've always found the logic seriously lacking for biblical inerrancy. The bible is all there is and perfect and yet neither of those concepts are in the bible. The bible teaches of a church where men teach with authority and receive revelation directing their actions.

in fact, in order to accept the idea that the bible is all there is you have to deny the workings of the spirit. The Holy spirit is God and thus His words are Gods word and scripture. If the bible is all God has given us then there is no Spirit. I cannot accept that premise when I've experienced the Spirit for myself

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I've always found the logic seriously lacking for biblical inerrancy. The bible is all there is and perfect and yet neither of those concepts are in the bible. The bible teaches of a church where men teach with authority and receive revelation directing their actions.

in fact, in order to accept the idea that the bible is all there is you have to deny the workings of the spirit. The Holy spirit is God and thus His words are Gods word and scripture. If the bible is all God has given us then there is no Spirit. I cannot accept that premise when I've experienced the Spirit for myself

 

Straw men are falling everywhere... 

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Biblical inerrancy, priesthood of all believers, and a conception of grace which at best nullifies good works and at worst vilifies them?

Nope, no appeal to me.

 

I think I understand your problem with Biblical inerrancy and the Baptist concept of grace vs works.  But I'm curious as to your aversion to a priesthood of all believers.  Even if that isn't something that we believe is true, it seems kind of nice to me.  What am I missing here?

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I've always found the logic seriously lacking for biblical inerrancy. The bible is all there is and perfect and yet neither of those concepts are in the bible. The bible teaches of a church where men teach with authority and receive revelation directing their actions.

in fact, in order to accept the idea that the bible is all there is you have to deny the workings of the spirit. The Holy spirit is God and thus His words are Gods word and scripture. If the bible is all God has given us then there is no Spirit. I cannot accept that premise when I've experienced the Spirit for myself

 

If I'm not mistaken, I don't think that Baptists deny the workings of the spirit.  I think that they simply claim that, in the event of a conflict, the Bible wins.  On a personal level, this is my default position.  Given my penchant for confusing my desires for promptings of the Spirit, I check my personal "revelations" against Scripture.  Therefore, when my "spirit" whispers that the Lord wants me to have that extra slice of pie (or the pretty brunette sitting next to me on the plane), I can point to scripture (and my wife's left hook) as to why I should ignore that particularly prompting.

 

Now, I'm not saying that this is how Church leaders should act, as I presume that they have a far greater gift of spiritual discernment than a newb like me (fading out with "Amazing grace, how sweet the sound ...").

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I think I understand your problem with Biblical inerrancy and the Baptist concept of grace vs works.  But I'm curious as to your aversion to a priesthood of all believers.  Even if that isn't something that we believe is true, it seems kind of nice to me.  What am I missing here?

 

My big issue with it is the historicity of the practice, as well as the real implementation of it. Latter-day Saints are not so far removed from the notion of the priesthood of all believers as one might think. Our ordination of all male members, the endowing of females and their practice of priesthood ordinances in the temple, and the emphasis put on exaltation being dependent on all of God's children being ordained priests and priestesses is actually somewhat removed from the "secular" vs "spiritual" membership of the Cathodox churches. 

 

My big beefs with the mainstream notion of a universal priesthood is largely the same as the grace vs. works one: they aren't faithful to the textual or historical accounts we have of early Christianity with few exceptions. Those exceptions tended to be negative influences and detriments within Christ's organized body of believers in the ancient texts. Furthermore, I find the popular doctrine tends to motivate some individuals into taking God's authority unto themselves.

 

A popular example raised by many is the commission of Paul to preach the Gospel unto the Gentiles. While it may appear at first to jive with the notion that belief is the only thing necessary to act in God's name in an organizing, and leading position within the Kingdom, a thorough reading of the text renders the opposite conclusion.

 

1) Paul's belief didn't give him authority, but Jesus' calling him.

 

2) Despite Paul being somewhat of a maverick, butting heads intermittently with the Jerusalem apostles, in both his own accounts and the account of him in Acts he largely attempts communion with them and to fit himself in within the organized body of leadership and believers. He does this through the attendance of conferences, consulting with them on proselytizing activities, submitting to their counsels in a few places, and undertaking a collection for the poor of Jerusalem (hugely significant relationship builder with the context of patron-client relationships of Greco-Roman world)

 

3) Paul himself wasn't a fan of the notion of an automatic priesthood due to belief (belief being defined as intellectual assent unto the Gospel of Jesus Christ). A good portion of his letters deals with leadership concerns, the appointing of overseers (opiskopos, or Bishops), and heeding the words of an ordained presbyteros (eldership)

 

Places in the New Testament where the doctrine of a universal belief based on belief are usually treated negatively. One of the epistles of John specifically speaks of the negative effects of upholding ones own belief/priesthood above that of the organized priesthood of the church. The Revelation of John addresses huge issues stemming from autonomous practice of the priesthood overseership and practice.

 

In all honesty, I would wholeheartedly embrace the doctrine of the "Priesthood of all the Faithful." Pistis is the greek word erroneously translated as faith and belief in modern translations of (most) Bibles. While the nuances and connotations associated with Pistis might have been accurately rendered as those words in the 16th and 17th century the modern meanings fall flat of describing it. Pistis is a continuous trust, observance, love, and submission to a patron within the context of a patron-client relationship. The patron renders favour and grace upon the needy, and the needy meet that grace with their own reciprocal grace via that loyalty. Such loyalty includes correct action, and the combination of that loyal, loving, active adherence is what Pistis is at its core. A priesthood of all believers, wherein belief is solely intellectual assent unto the Gospel of Jesus Christ is out of step with the reciprocal practice of grace and priesthood described within the New Testament. A priesthood of the faithful though? Wherein the intellectual assenter enters into a relationship with Deity and community and seeks to practice their faith through ordinances, ordination and unity? That is a far more beautiful priesthood, and more faithful to the community and gospel which Christ preached.

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Pistis is the greek word erroneously translated as faith and belief in modern translations of (most) Bibles. While the nuances and connotations associated with Pistis might have been accurately rendered as those words in the 16th and 17th century the modern meanings fall flat of describing it. Pistis is a continuous trust, observance, love, and submission to a patron within the context of a patron-client relationship.

 

Nearly ten years ago, my own studies took me to the original meanings of this word, and my 'faith' has never been the same since.

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I wonder what their source is for members leaving in droves?

Elder Jensen was not the one who said they were leaving in droves. The person asking the question was the one who said that. Jensen merely indicated agreement that people were leaving. 

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Nearly ten years ago, my own studies took me to the original meanings of this word, and my 'faith' has never been the same since.

 

Yup. It's a beautiful word that has been lost in a sea of translation and linguistic chance. I'm convinced, and feel through the Spirit that one of the chief reasons for the bringing forth of the Book of Mormon in this day and age is the restoration of the true Pistis and its associated beliefs and covenants.

 

A study of the word "charis," translated as grace, but denoting something closer to divine favour has transformed my worship of God and my understanding of the Atonement as well.

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Possibly some of the same people who also claim that Church growth in areas with the internet has come to a complete halt?

 

If that is the case, then expect most of the remaining growth to occur in North Korea.  In five years, 90% of the world will be using smart phones.

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Welp, hopefully we can expect some more baptisms out of this. I know when I was in a YSA ward on campus one of our best source of baptisms was students coming over after an anti-Mormon lecture to beard the lion in his lair or something. I played pool with a few of them in the Institute building. I know of at least four baptisms. Thanks Southern Baptists! :)

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If that is the case, then expect most of the remaining growth to occur in North Korea.  In five years, 90% of the world will be using smart phones.

 

Gosh I think the whole world has internet. We got it practically free in the 3rd world countries we visited.

 

Yeah, I didn't say I agreed that it was the case, just that it's one more of those things said by people who like to fantasise that the Church is on the brink of complete annihilation. I live in the most connected city in a country whose government is paying out obscene sums of money to try to get super-fast broadband into people's homes. Before I left work this afternoon, one of my friends contacted me to see if the Elders and I can visit tomorrow evening to share a lesson. His occupation: IT specialist.

Edited by Hamba Tuhan
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I attended a Baptist service by myself last summer, it was ok, but just didn't do it for me. I'm finding it hard to replace my Mormonism. There seems to be nothing I can complain very much about. In our primary last week I just loved singing those songs (practicing for a Christmas program, maybe that's why). It felt good to worship through song, and let it take over my negativity. Anyway, haven't been in the Baptist's Primary age Sunday School maybe it's just as good. But have heard many EV's comment that our youth programs are excellent.

Edited by Tacenda
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    I remember Dan Peterson doing a paper entitled - " Shall They Not Both Fall Into The Ditch ?, What Certain Baptist Think they Know About The Restored Gospel".

 

In His Debt/Grace

       Anakin7

 

  P.S  I have corrected the above title - thanks Scott Lloyd in your post # 42

Edited by Anakin7
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    I remember Dan Peterson doing a paper entitled - " Falling Into The Ditch ?, What Baptist Think they Know Abolut The Restored Gospel".

 

In His Debt/Grace

       Anakin7

Here's a link.

 

The correct title is "'Shall They Not Both Fall into the Ditch?'

What Certain Baptists Think They Know about the Restored Gospel"

 

It's a review of this: The Mormon Puzzle: Understanding and Witnessing to Latter-day Saints. Alpharetta, Ga.: North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, 1997. Various manuals, a video, and pamphlets. $34.99.

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Didn't someone from the SBC give a talk at BYU not so long ago?

Here.

 

The presence of the president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary behind the podium at Brigham Young University requires some explanation. I come as an evangelical Christian, committed to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to the trinitarian beliefs of the historic Christian faith. I come as one who does not share your theology and who has long been involved in urgent discussions about the distinctions between the faith of the Latter Day Saints and the faith of the historic Christian church. I come as who I am, and your leaders invited me to come knowing who I am. I have come knowing who you are and what you believe and my presence here does not mean that the distance between our beliefs has been reduced. It does mean, however, that we now know something that we did not know before. We need to talk. We can and must take the risk of responsible, respectful, and honest conversation. We owe this to each other, and we owe this to the faiths we represent. And we had better talk with candor and urgency, for the times demand it. ...

 

President Samuelson, members of the faculty, and students, I come in what can only be described as a dangerous moment for us all and for the culture and civilization we commonly love. The most fundamental values of civilization itself are threatened, and we are witnesses to one of the most comprehensive and fast-paced moral revolutions ever experienced by humanity. The velocity and breadth of this revolution are breathtaking, and the consequences are yet incalculable. This society is dismantling the very structures that have allowed for the enjoyment and preservation of human liberty and respect for life. We are engaged in a head-long effort to replace the convictions that gave birth to democracy and ordered liberty with a new set of convictions that will lead to the emergence of a very different culture, society, and civilization. We cannot pretend that this is not happening. We cannot delude ourselves into believing that it will not matter.

 

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Didn't someone from the SBC give a talk at BYU not so long ago?

Yes Albert Mohler, he is I think the president of the SBC. He is also a follower of Calvinistic Theology, which from what I understand has been a bit of a controversy in their denomination. He said point blank that he doesn't think LDS will be going to heaven, but they and Evangelicals will be going to jail together for standing up for morality. Also of note, George Wood, a higher up in the Assemblies of God denomination (a Pentecostal group) also spoke at BYU, but I am not sure what the topic of his speech was. 

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I come as one who does not share your theology and who has long been involved in urgent discussions about the distinctions between the faith of the Latter Day Saints and the faith of the historic Christian church.

 

The words "historic Christianity" literally makes me want to poke my eyes out sometimes.

Edited by Ham Clam
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Here's a link.

The correct title is "'Shall They Not Both Fall into the Ditch?'

What Certain Baptists Think They Know about the Restored Gospel"

It's a review of this: The Mormon Puzzle: Understanding and Witnessing to Latter-day Saints. Alpharetta, Ga.: North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, 1997. Various manuals, a video, and pamphlets. $34.99.

Have the southern baptists ever said how their mission to utah in 1998 turned out?
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Have the southern baptists ever said how their mission to utah in 1998 turned out?

I remember that occasion. It was in connection with their national convention here in Salt Lake City.

 

As I recall, they made a few door-to-door contacts, consistent with what they do in each locale where they have their convention. They even made a courtesy call on the First Presidency.

 

They held their meetings at the Salt Palace and, as I recall, were very orderly and businesslike. (Out of curiosity, I went in to observe.)

 

But as far as I can tell, they didn't have any great residual impact on the local community.

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I remember that occasion. It was in connection with their national convention here in Salt Lake City.

As I recall, they made a few door-to-door contacts, consistent with what they do in each locale where they have their convention. They even made a courtesy call on the First Presidency.

They held their meetings at the Salt Palace and, as I recall, were very orderly and businesslike. (Out of curiosity, I went in to observe.)

But as far as I can tell, they didn't have any great residual impact on the local community.

So they were unable to wrestle utah away from satan.

Interesting. :D

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