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Saturday, August 05, 2006

A REAL Baptist?

Below is a short and simple column by Dr. James Dunn (former Exec. Director of the BJC)...

How to recognize a "real" Baptist if you see one.........

By James M. Dunn

1. If soul liberty is important.

2. If the priesthood of all believers is more than a slogan.

3. If one insists on interpreting the Scriptures for themselves.

4. If one defends the right of each person to come to the Bible and, led by the spirit, seek its truth.

5. If one believes that one must accept Jesus Christ personally.

6. If the church functions as a democracy.

7. If in the fellowship of churches each one is autonomous.

8. If there is no pope or presbyter, president or pastor who rules over you.

9. If religious liberty is the password to public witness and the separation of church and state is its essential corollary.

10. If no mortal has the power to suppress, curtail, rule out, or reign over the will of the local congregation.

4 Comments:

Blogger Nathan Finn said...

The interesting thing about this list is that many Baptists who are much more conservative than Dr. Dunn could affirm this list. They would simply define the terms differently. Are such conservatives "real" Baptists, or is Dr. Dunn imposing his interpretation of Scripture upon the Baptist proletariat? :-)

7:13 PM

 
Blogger Big Daddy Weave said...

Well..most in the Moderate camp enjoy Dunn's pot-shots at his "neopharisaical fundamentalist" Baptist brothers.

Interesting tidbit most don't realize - John Piper's Baptist General Conference financially supports the BJC. Would John Piper personally support the BJC? "Youth for Calvin" and the Separation of Church and State is a subject that I hope to explore this Fall...

9:20 PM

 
Blogger Nathan Finn said...

That will indeed be an interesting subject.

12:02 PM

 
Blogger baptistlikeme said...

These are good criteria, as long as we keep extending soul liberty to each of them. Separation of church and state, for example, means many things to many people, even among moderates.

Regarding point 10, I'd say that local congregants need to be watchful of this. Mortal power creeps in mysterious ways. From an ABCUSA perspective, pastors can effect a de facto power over congregants by not passing along vital communication from regional or national groups the member churches partner with. I examine this in detail in one of my recent posts (Local Autonomy Requires Lay Access).

blessings.

1:00 AM

 

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