The Baptist Program
"Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you" (Matthew 28:20).
"Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 5:19).
The Baptist program includes all the commands of the Lord Jesus. "One is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren." This program may be epitomized in four words: "Go: Disciple: Baptize: Indoctrinate." The first three of these are discussed in other chapters of this book. We can not put too much emphasis upon them. They are vital, essential, fundamental. The Great Commission is the Baptist Magna Charta. "Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you" is just as truly the command of the Lord Jesus as any other part of that commission. But who pays any attention to it? The average Baptist preacher or Baptist church not only does not pay any attention to this command of his Lord, but openly and flagrantly disavows all obligations to pay any attention to it. So obsessed have we become with pleasing men and so little regard do we have for the Lord Jesus and His Word that multitudes of pastors and churches have whittled out of our Lord's commission the part that tells us to observe all things whatsoever He has commanded. A common saying of what Samuel Johnson calls "the bigots of laxness" is: "In essentials unity, in non essentials liberty, in all things charity." A more traitorous utterance to the authority of the Lord Jesus was never spoken. Who are you and who am I to say that any command of the Lord Jesus is nonessential?
1. Teach All His Commands
He commanded His preachers and His churches to teach all things whatsoever He commanded. No choice was left to us. Whether it suited us or suited our members or suited our auditors or not, He commanded His churches and those who teach them to teach all that He commanded. We are under just as much obligation to teach what the Bible says about bobbed hair or immodest dressing as we are to teach what it says about the incarnation of Jesus or the resurrection of the body. The judgment will not be a very comfortable place for any man or for any church that is silent about any command
2. Teach to Observe
We are not only commanded to teach all things He commanded; but we are commanded to observe them ourselves and teach others to observe them. The observance is the obedience. What Jesus wants is obedience. Obedience is the test of love to Him (John 14:15, John 15:14). John the beloved said that the man, who professes to know and love Jesus and does not obey Him, is a common liar and is wholly destitute both of love of Christ and of the love of the truth (I John 2:3), John 14:23-24).
Because John loved so much, he talked very plainly about the hypocrite, who claims to love the Lord Jesus and yet refuses to obey Him.
3. Observe All Things
There's the rub. Not only teach all things: but observe all things He commanded. A missionary was reading the sermon on the Mount to a lot of new converts just barely escaped from the blindness and superstition of heathenism. He came to this passage "Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away" (Matthew 5:42). They had already borrowed everything out of his home that he could well spare. So he skipped that verse. Then the Spirit rebuked him for "shunning to declare the whole counsel of God." When the rebukes of the Spirit became unbearable, he came back to it one morning and read it. To his surprise, instead of wanting to borrow more, they began to return what they had borrowed. God is able to take care of His Word and of all who obey it. The word translated "observe" means to guard, to stand firmly in, to observe. It has all three of those ideas in it. Baptists are the guardians of the truth. Some Baptists sneer at the denominational watchdog. Yet that is
4. All Things Commanded You
Put the emphasis on the you. He commanded you to observe all things He commanded. That commission was given to His churches and the "you" includes every member of every Baptist church in all the world. That "you" is individual as well as collective. The only limitations to the obedience enjoined therein are the limitations found in the infallible Word of God. God's commands are His enablings. "All things are possible to him that believeth." "I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me." "As much as in me is" was Paul's limit. For that reason, he could say: "I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me." "My grace is sufficient for thee." is the Master's Word to each of us for any task He puts upon us.
No command of His is antiquated or out of date. His words are as binding today as the day He spoke them. The truth changes not. "Forever O Lord, Thy Word is settled in heaven." God meant exactly what He said and there isn't a command in the Bible, that was intended for His children to obey, that is not easily understood, if we come to it with open mind and let it mean what it says. The little girl was right, who said: "If God did not mean what He said, why did He not say what He meant?" There is lots of quibbling by the self-willed and disobedient as to what God meant when the meaning is right on the face of the command, if they were but willing to obey. "If any man will to do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of Myself" -- declared the Son of God Himself. Every man is without excuse for his disobedience, when he stands before God. One other fact from my second text.
The Bible commands women to keep silence in churches (1 Corinthians 14:32-37, 1 Timomthy 2:8-15). Suppose that is the very least command in the Bible. I do not think it is. But just suppose it is. What did the Master say about the folks who broke the least command in His Word and taught others to break it? They shall be least in the heavenly kingdom. What humiliation, when practically all the leaders of Southern Baptists are asked to take a back seat and the more honorable, who obeyed the little commands of the Bible, are asked to come up and take a higher seat. Who said it would be that way? The Lord Jesus and He will be the judge that day (Luke 14:7-11). The Bible says it is a shame for women to speak in the church. Women who thus disobey the Scriptures are honored in nearly all our Baptist assemblies now. But there is one place they will not be honored for their disobedience of God's Word. That will be when they have to take a back seat before Judge Jesus. The only women who will be honored then, will be home-bodies, who wore modest apparel, were submissive to their husbands and obeyed the Book. Blessings on them! There are far more than seven thousand of them: but they are a very small remnant among the women of the South.
In the day of assizes it will make lots of difference what church you joined. And the Master said that if you love father or mother or the family burying ground or any thing else, even life itself, more than you do Him, that you are not worthy of Him. What a difference it will make at the judgment about the years of sinning wasted, when you lived at one place and kept your membership at another or in your trunk. Every believer will be rewarded for what he does for the Lord Jesus: but no man will be rewarded for his work in any church founded by a man. It will make lots of difference that day as to what church you joined. And then one of the supreme tests of that day will be what you did for missions. Jesus was the founder of missions, as well as the founder of the Baptists. I doubt if any opposer of missions will get to heaven: for I seriously doubt the genuineness of his love for Christ. If any man does not love Christ he will be accursed when Jesus comes (1 Corinthians 16:22). Be that as it
No tither will get that blessing. That blessing is promised only to the man or woman who gives all to Christ and the gospel. Christ and the gospel are the very heart of missions. The lover of Jesus and His gospel to the point of distraction about missions, whose one obsession in life is missions, will be the great man in the heavenly kingdom. One other word. Read Matthew 10:40-42. No woman who dabbles in politics or social service or club life or who talks in public, will be great in the heavenly kingdom. What they do, they do for show. They have their reward. Jesus said so (Matthew 6:1-7). The lodge and club man will fare just as badly in the day of rewards. Nothing to show for his life's work. Won't it be awful that day? What humiliation and chagrin! But the woman who stays in her place as a worker at home, and in her church; who is given to hospitality and sacrificial giving, will be great in the kingdom. Here is what the Master said: "He that receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophets reward." The only way a woman can get a preacher's reward is by entertaining him in her home and loyally supporting him in his work. The Master and His Bible were both very peculiar. We have heard the other part of Matthew 10:40-42 quoted often,but never heard it quoted correctly. Jesus did not promise a reward to any Dick, Tom or Harry, that gave a cup of cold water to some child or needy one. Far be it. What Jesus promised was that He would reward anyone who gave even a cup of cold water to one of His least ones, if it was done
If that is the truth, if men get into the family of God by one process, and into the church of God by another and different one, it follows certainly, that the family of God and the church of God are two different institutions. He who has been "born into the family of God by the new birth" is a child of God, and, as such is an heir of God and a joint heir with Jesus Christ (Romans 8:17). Is it possible that these "heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ" are still out of the church of God? Again: he who has been "born into the family of God" has the remission of sins; for, certainly, God's children are not reprobates. Again: He who has been "born into the family of God" is a new creature. "If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new" (2 Corinthians 5:17). We should feel under lasting obligations to Brother Taylor if he would tell us just what God must do to this person, or what the person himself must do to become a member of God's church, after he has been "born into the family of God," after he has remission of sins, after he has become a "new creature." His declaration that "men are born into the family of God" is entirely correct, but that the family of God is one thing and the church of God is another thing, is entirely erroneous. "The house of God, which is the church of the living God" (1 Timothy 3:15). The family of God and the house of God are certainly the same, and the apostle here most emphatically
We gladly answer the questions herein contained. In fact, while we are at it we go a little further and distinguish between the family of God, the church of God, and the kingdom of God as used in the New Testament.
The family of God includes all the children of God in heaven and on earth. In Ephesians 3:15 Paul speaks of the "whole family in heaven and on earth." This family includes all believers. "Ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus" (Galatians 3:26). All believers are God's children. Since the Old Testament saints were saved by faith in Christ (Acts 10:43, Romans 4:16, etc.), they are all members of God's family.
God's family is bigger than the kingdom of God or the church of God for it now contains all the saved from Abel to the last man who has believed, whether in heaven or on earth. God has only one family. All believers are children and heirs of God.
The Kingdom of God includes all the saved on earth at any given time. In Matthew 13 the kingdom is used to include all professors. But the kingdom as used in John 3:3-5, Matthew 16:19, 11:11, Luke 16:16, Romans 14:17, Colossians 1:13, John 18:36, etc. is composed of all the born-again on the earth. This is not the kingdom of Daniel 2:44, Luke 9:11-27, Acts 1:16, etc. Those passages refer to the millennium. That kingdom is yet future.
What is sometimes called the spiritual kingdom is composed only of those who have been born again, who have been "translated, out of darkness into the kingdom of His dear Son." In John 3:3-5 the Master said, except a man be born anew he can neither see nor enter the Kingdom of God. In Matthew 18:1-16 and Mark 10:13-15 the Master shows very clearly, that the kingdom is composed of only such as have received Him, whether children or adults. The family of God includes all the saved of all the ages, whether in heaven or on earth; the kingdom of God includes that part of the family of God who are on earth now.
The church of God is never used of any institution, except
The local individual church is the only kind of church God has on this earth today. There is only one family of God, composed of all the redeemed of all the ages in heaven and on earth. There is only one kingdom of God, composed of all the born again on the earth now. There are thousands of churches of God on earth. Every individual Baptist church is a church of God. No others are. When a man is born again he is born into God's family. He is in the family of God forever. The relationship does not change. Whether in heaven or on earth he is in God's family. When he is born again he also enters God's kingdom. This relationship is for life. When he dies he passes out of the kingdom of God on earth and enters "His heavenly kingdom" (2 Timothy 4:18).
After he has been born again he is not yet in a church of God, but is now a scriptural subject for admission into a church of God. "The Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved" (Acts 2:47). Church membership was not something a man gets with salvation but a subsequent blessing he gets after salvation by being added to the church. Baptism is not essential to admission into either the family of God or the kingdom of God: but baptism is essential to admission into a church of God. Men are born anew into the family of God and into the kingdom of God: but they are baptized into a church of God (1 Corinthians 12:13). The "one body" referred to here by Paul in 1 Corinthians 12:13 was the church of God at Corinth. Note in 1 Corinthians 12:27 he says, "Ye are a body of Christ, and members in particular."
That local church at Corinth was the body of Christ at Corinth. The members of the church at Corinth belonged to only "one body" of Christ. That body of Christ probably did not contain all the saved at Corinth (I Corinthians 1:2) and none of the saved anywhere else except at Corinth. Since they belonged to only "one body" and that was the local church at Corinth, Christ has no other kind of church or body except a local church. If they had belonged to a local church at Corinth, which Paul
Prof. Royal, of Wake Forest College, N. C., who taught Prof. A. T. Robertson, of the Louisville Seminary, when asked if he knew of an instance in classic Greek where ekklesia was ever used of a class of "unassembled or unassembling persons," said: "I do not know of any such passage in classic Greek." With this statement agree Profs. Burton of Chicago University, Stifler of Crozer, Strong of Rochester and many
The limbs of a body scattered on a battlefield are not a body. The material of a house in the woods or quarries is not a house. These members and this material must be put in place before you have either a body or a house. So the saved are not a church unless brought together and organized or builded into a body or house of God. There is not and cannot be such an institution as a universal invisible church on this earth, composed of all the saved, because the material has never been brought together and builded into a house or body.
When the Lord Jesus and Paul spoke of the baptized believers of a larger territory than a local church they always said churches. There was no confusion in their speaking though there is much confusion in modern thinking upon this question.
Once more we try to make the distinction clear. The family of God is composed of all the saved in heaven and on earth. Old Testament saints and babies who died in infancy are in
All believers on the earth at any given time since the days of John the Baptist (Luke 16:16) compose the kingdom of God There are no infants in it. All true believers, whether Catholic, Protestant, Baptist or non-church-members on earth are in the kingdom; for if true believers they have been born anew. Only baptized believers or Baptists are members of the churches of Christ.
The writer is a denominationalist and a co-operationist. He has no sympathy with fundamentalism; because all the fundamentalists he has ever known have been unionists. And all unionists are traitors to the truth. As a citizen I can and do cooperate with other good citizens, even though they are not believers, in support of the Anti-Saloon League, law enforcement, humanitarian enterprises like the Children's Home Society of Kentucky and other worthy causes. We work together there because we are agreed as to the needs and the righteousness of their appeals. But we work together in these things because we are in agreement as to the principles of co-operation. The principles on which we agree to co-operate are that the cause is worthy; that all good citizens ought to help a worthy cause; and that our cooperation shall be as citizens and shall be voluntary. No compromise is made in that kind of cooperation.
In the work of the Lord Jesus Christ I do not co-operate with anybody but Baptists, because nobody but Baptists even try to do the Lord's work in the Lord's way. Here are three concrete examples. In Nehemiah 6:1-16) Sanballat, Tobiah, Geshem and other enemies of Israel asked the privilege of helping in building the walls of Jerusalem. Why not? Were they not all citizens of that goodly city? Why should there not be co-operation in that building enterprise? Nehemiah refused to meet them for conference and maintained his separateness, because there could be no co-operation even in building the walls of the city, without compromising both the Jews' separateness and their teachings. Again Jehoshaphat made an alliance with Ahab to fight the enemies of Israel. They were all Jews and the alliance was not for worship but
Baptists cannot work with God, if they go into partnership with anybody but Baptists. Let us look into the Word of God and see if we can find out some principles of co-operation laid down in His Book.
1. Working God's Way
That is what the text says. "Workers together with Him." The only way we can work with Him, is by finding what He is working at and what His plans are and do it His way. We have failed in all the plans we have made from the Seventy-five Million Campaign and all succeeding campaigns up to now (1928) because we have made our own plans, instead of finding out His plans from His Word and working with Him. Instead of working with Him, we have gotten the cart before the horse. We have made the plans and wanted Him to work with us. God does not work that way. It is His work.
2. The Local Church the Center of Co-operation.
We are not discussing details of co-operation but principles of co-operation. The very first principle of co-operation is that we must work with God. He does not co-operate unless we work His way. His way means that He is in the lead, makes all the plans, decides all doubtful questions, furnishes all finances, supplies both wisdom and power (Daniel 2:20, Acts 1:8, 2 Corinthians 2:14-16, 3:5), and has His way about every thing. Hudson Taylor's shibboleth still works: "God's man in God's place doing God's work in God's way for God's glory never yet lacked God's supplies."
The second principle of co-operation in the Lord's work is that the local church must be the center of co-operation. There's a reason. Each local church is a body of Christ. If we co-operate with the head, the Lord Jesus, we must co-operate with His body. That is the weakest place in Baptist co-operation. There is no co-operation with the Head, the Lord Jesus, because there is no co-operation with and
What saith the Scriptures? "Hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all things" (Ephesians 1:22-23). Jesus is the head of the body. The body is the local church (1 Corinthians 12:27). Jesus is the head over all things to each local church. That means He is head of all co-operation and all co-operation must be through the local church, if He is head over all things to the church and the church is His body. If co-operation is through the W. M. U. then Jesus is not head over all things to the church. The W. M. U. is the head over the church in co-operation. Whatever is included in that co-operation is taken out of the hands of the church and is done independent of the body of Christ. If done independent of the body of Christ, it is done independent of Christ the head also: for there can be no co-operation
The churches have no say-so in the co-operation, except to pay the bills. The budget ought to be made by the churches. The budget ought to be put on by the pastors and the churches. The money ought to be disbursed by the churches. Biblical co-operation is co-operation with Christ through His body, the local church of which the donor is a member. In these churches, who had a part in this co-operative work, in the passage we are studying, all dividing of funds was done in the local church; and all gifts were designated gifts, when they left the local church. That way every church knew exactly where their money went and one of their members went
But says some one, suppose the church has no budget or includes all things in its budget, which are not scriptural, what must we do then? The answer is easy. Co-operation is with Christ the head through His body the church. If the church is out of fellowship with the head and the body is not in co-operation with the head, then your first allegiance is to Christ. He is the head of every man, as well as the head of every local church (1 Corinthians 11:1-3). The Lord Jesus never made a woman the head of anything. Headship belongs first to God, then to Christ and then to men. No man is under any obligation to co-operate with anything that has a woman as the head of it. He is a sissy, if he does. If your church is run by women, then do your own co-operating directly with Christ the head and wait until His body, the church, acknowledges the headship of Christ before you co-operate with them. To co-operate with a church out of co-operation with Christ would be to be a party to and partaker of their rebellion against the authority of Christ, the head. No member of any Baptist church is under any obligation to co-operate with any organization that puts a program instead of the Lord Jesus as that for which an appeal for co-operation is made. No Baptist is under obligation to co-operate with an executive committee or board or any thing else, that makes itself the center of co-operation, instead of making the Lord Jesus and His body, the local church, the center of all co-operation. Baptists have no need of an executive committee, such as the Southern Baptist Convention now has. It has not a single
3. No Co-operation Except on the Book
The first principle of Baptist co-operation is that it must be co-operation with Christ the Lord in the lead. The plans must be His. The power must be His. The work must be financed by Him. The workers must be of His choosing. His Spirit must be acknowledged as His vice-general and His authority must be unquestioned. He must be given the benefit of the doubt on every question that comes up. No quibbling with Him; but on the contrary unquestioned obedience to Him in all things. He brooks no rivals. He divides honors and authority with no one. He must in all things have the preeminence. There can be no co-operation with Him except on His terms. That is the very first principle in all co-operation in the work of Christ. And then, in this co-operative work, the very center of it is that the individual co-operates as a member of the body of Christ, with the body of which he is a member. The head and the body and each individual member work together. That is scriptural co-operation. Each member co-operates with and through the body of Christ, His church, and not through any other body, inside or outside
The third essential in Baptist co-operation is that there can be no co-operation except on the Book. Baptists are a people of one Book. If you read it out of the Book, they will believe it. If you cannot read it out of the Book, they will be shy of it. That is why five-sixths or perhaps nine-tenths of our Baptist people in the South are not co-operating with our mission work. Our leaders have too many things in our South wide program, which the common people cannot find in the Book. And in many states, the number, who are co-operating, grows beautifully less all the time, instead of growing and multiplying. The reason is that co-operation is not asked on the Book. Too many things are in the co-operative program, that are not in the Bible. Make our programs read like the Book and Baptists will take to them, just like they now take to the other things, preached to them out of the Bible. Without discussing
Baptists are a self-governing, self-propagating and self-supporting people, when they follow the Bible. Where subsidies thrive, self-support dies. Where enlistment thrives, missions die. Where handed-down budgets thrive, local self government dies. Where overhead expenses multiply, contributions dwindle. Where education is magnified, the gospel of grace, which is the child of humility, is unknown. Where standardization is supreme, the Lord Jesus is dethroned. Where education is the standard, the head is the main thing, mind is master, faith is only a form of intellectual assent and Campbellism, Unitarianism and Modernism prosper.
James tells us about the wisdom that comes from psychology and the other ologies, "descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish" (James 3:15). The word translated "sensual" is the adjective form of the word psuche, from which the first half of the word, psychology, comes. Four things are said about soulish or psychical education.
First, it is not from above. That is true of all education acquired in the schools, standard or otherwise. It is all from beneath. Its tendency is downward. It does not come from above and no stream can rise higher than its source.
The second thing said about this soulish education is that it is earthly. Green's Greek Lexicon translated this word "low, grovelling" and cites James 3:15 as the example where it has that meaning. That is the Holy Spirit's estimate of all worldly education.
Third, the wisdom of the world acquired in the schools is sensual or soulish.
And fourth, this wisdom is devilish. The vital distinction is as to where it came from. The wisdom acquired in the schools is from beneath and for that very reason is low, grovelling, sensual and devilish. The wisdom that God gives is from above. It is not acquired. It is
The new man, the spiritual man, feeds and grows upon the Word of God. (1 Peter 2:2).
I may have gotten a long way from co-operation. But the longest way around is sometimes the shortest way through. That was true in this case. Co-operation is a matter of the spirit -- the new man. The Bible says "All thy children shall be taught of the LORD; and great shall be the peace of thy children" (Isaiah 54:13). Co-operation is one of the things of the Spirit, that Jesus spoke of in these words: "Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto Me" (John 6:45). Co-operation is first of all taught of God. We are workers together with God. Co-operation is with Jesus Christ and His body, the church, to which we belong. Just as Jesus opened the Scriptures and taught His disciples all things from the Scriptures, concerning Himself and His world wide-mission program, so all real co-operation today must be based on and grow out of His eternal and infallible Word of truth (Luke 24:25-27, 44-45). John the beloved, in writing to his well-beloved friend, one of the
With Bro. Gambrell we agree most heartily in saying: "No Scripture must be so interpreted, as to contradict another Scripture, when that other Scripture is of certain and unmistakable interpretation."
And yet that is exactly what both of the brethren have done, as we will show a little later on.
Bro. Moody misses the issue as widely as does Bro. Gambrell. He cites women prophesying "preaching in a private and personal way" and Priscilla's private instruction of Apollos in support of his position, not one of which touches the question of women speaking in public before mixed assemblies.
But let us clear up the issue just a little further by noting just exactly what it is that women are prohibited from doing.
2. To lead in public prayer in a mixed assembly (1 Timothy 2:8-9). The word translated "men" here means "men" as distinguished from women and children, so says Thayer's lexicon. That means men only are to lead in public prayer in mixed assemblies.
3. To teach men (1 Timothy 2:12). This prohibition limits the work of women in Sunday Schools to teaching women and children. There is plenty of work for them to do there without getting out of their place and teaching men's classes. It is significant that nearly all Sunday School experts today are saying that the teaching of men and boys above the intermediate department is a man's job. God said so a long time ago.
4. To be in authority over a man (1 Timothy 2:12). Women are prohibited from having any place in the work of our churches that puts them in authority over their brethren. So important is this that Paul in 1 Corinthians 11:3-10 says that whenever a woman comes into a church assembly she ought to have a veil or covering of some kind on her head as a sign that she is under authority, not in authority. The flagrant violation of this prohibition by evangelists and evangelistic
These are the prohibitions which God the Spirit put upon our sisters.
The world is better and brighter when women sanctify and beautify home, proudly saying, "My husband is my glory, my children are my jewels and I am content to live in them. Why should I desire to be a man and fill his place: who then will fill mine?"
2. Her Hospitality and Service.
In Matthew 10:40-42 the Lord Jesus Himself shows that those who receive God's prophets and minister to them and to His needy little ones will get as much reward as the prophets do to whom they minister. In other words the Master said that women, upon whom these tasks pre-eminently fall, will get just as much reward for their private work faithfully done, as the men will for their public work, faithfully performed. The women who speak in public, like the folks who give and pray and fast to be seen of men, get their reward here in what men say about it.
We believe a careful reading of some of the things that God has commanded women to do will show that the most neglected work in the world is woman's work. Just to the extent that woman becomes man's competitor in doing a man's work, just to that extent her own work goes undone. Because so many women are trying to be men and fill men's places today women's work is the most neglected, the most slighted, and the most needed work in all the world.
What is woman's sphere and work?
1. The Home. Women should above all else be homebodies. Woman was made to be man's helpmeet. The "virtuous" woman in Proverbs 31 was a "worker at home." Paul enjoined Timothy, the young preacher, to teach the women to be, not idlers or tattlers, or busybodies, but "keepers at home (1 Timothy 5:13-14). Peter had somewhat to say along the same line in 1 Peter 3:16.
The divorce court, the apartment house, and the modern club are menaces today that threaten the sanctity and happiness and continuity of our American homes, because many women are not willing to be and to do the things necessary to make their homes little paradises of love and of God. The woman who neglects her home life to do any kind of public work, religious or otherwise, is not occupying her God-appointed sphere or doing her God-given task. Her husband is a stranger among men, wandering around lodges and hotel lobbies and other loafing places at night to find the companionship and love he ought to find at home; and her children are a menace to the public well and moral welfare of the community in which she lives. The home life is one of the most neglected spheres of woman's work, for no house ever was or ever can be a home without a woman to "guide the
2. Motherhood. Paul enjoins "younger women to marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion of the adversary to speak reproachfully."
Billy Sunday told only the other day in an address to the women of Kansas City of how two physicians had told him recently of six and twelve women respectively in his choirs and engaged in other religious work in other cities where he had been, who had come to them and asked them to "prostitute their manhood" and sin against God and their husbands and homes and their unborn progeny by "relieving them of the cares of motherhood." Some doctor was found who was criminal enough to do what they asked, for none of them have had babies since. Just that thing is giving the adversary occasion to speak reproachfully of many women in many churches.
3. Teach women. God's Word prohibits women from teaching men (1 Timothy 2:12). God's Word equally as clearly enjoins women to teach women (Titus 2:3-5). The reason so many young women are ensnared in the meshes of the white-slavers today is because they have not been taught. The reason so many girls are decoyed into the disgraceful, licentious modern dance is because mothers and other women teachers are too busy trying to do the men's work to take time to teach their daughters modesty and decency and chastity. The reason of the popularity of the "movies" with their unlimited temptation under the most favorable surroundings for too much freedom between the sexes is because the women are neglecting to teach their daughters the sacredness of their own person and the necessity of making boys "hands off" for the preservation
4. Hospitality, service, sacrifice.
In 1 Timothy 5:10 Paul outlines women's work as fourfold.
(1) Home "bringing up children."
(2) Hospitality "entertaining strangers."
(3) Service "washing the saint's feet."
(4) Sacrificial giving of time, labor or money to "relieve the afflicted" and other good works.
The widow who gave her two mites and Mary, who broke her alabaster box upon her Lord, were fine examples of sacrificial giving. Dorcas and others of her class were notable for heroic self-sacrificing service to the Lord's poor and afflicted. Lydia and Priscilla and the woman who fed Elijah a whole year and many others are marvelous examples of keeping open house for the Lord's servants. Women have their hands full if they follow out Paul's program as outlined above. Paul
Now having gotten out of the way some common objections let us note how remarkably consistent the Scriptures are in their teaching upon woman's sphere and work.
The cases cited by the advocates of women speaking in public are all cases of "wresting the Scriptures" except Deborah and she did not talk in public but she did exercise authority over men. But God tells why He permitted that.
Miriam, the Samaritan woman, the women at the Savior's tomb, Priscilla, Anna the prophetess, Phillip's daughters who were prophetesses and others are cited as examples of women speaking in public in mixed assemblies. In Miriam's case (Ex. 15:20) the Scriptures are very specific in saying that she led the women in their singing. Moses led the men.
The Samaritan woman did all her talk in personal private conversation to her neighbors and acquaintances as she went from house to house in the city and told of the Savior.
The women who were first at the tomb, though not last at the cross, as is so often said, went and told what they had seen to the disciples privately.
Anna the prophetess spoke of the infant Savior to the passers-by as they came and went. There were no public services in the temple and a woman was not even allowed to go into the men's court.
Priscilla was the wife of a man by the name of Aquila. His name is mentioned first when Paul met them and in their greeting in Corinth. She was however more active in her Master's work than her husband. In every other instance except one her name occurs first. That one case is the case of where they gave some private instructions to Bro. Apollos.
The incident in connection with Phillip's daughters is equally significant. Phillip had four daughters who were prophetesses. Paul was abiding at Phillip's house at Caesarea "many days." While there God sends to him a prophet named Agabus, whose home was probably at Antioch, to tell him of the imprisonment that awaited him at Jerusalem. Now why did God send a man all the way from Antioch to tell Paul that, when he was staying in the home of a man who had four daughters, who were prophetesses? Was it Paul's prejudice against women that the Lord humored by sending Agabus to him or was it a striking example of the consistency of the Spirit who inspired all prophecy, to maintain the clear teaching of God's Word that women must not usurp authority over a man?
Now let us note Deborah's case. She was the only woman judge and deliverer. She did exercise authority over men. Why this exception? God tells. In Judges 4:20 Barak said positively that he would not go at all unless she went with him. She told him then the honor would be a woman's if he was too cowardly to undertake the job without a woman taking the lead. The secret of this exception was to be found in the fact that the men of Deborah's day were cowards and "sissies." If Bro. Gambrell and Bro. Moody have the same kind of men to deal with, then they may get some help out of Sister Deborah for their cause. But so long as there are manly men in Texas and Illinois, who can and will lead in God's work, there is no warrant
The Lord Jesus said some very plain things to the church at Thyatira because they permitted a woman, who called herself a prophetess, to teach (Revelation 2:20). The "certain and unmistakable" Scriptures on this question are the prohibitions of Paul in I Corinthians and I Timothy and the example of the Lord Jesus while on earth in not appointing any woman to official position and His prohibition in Revelation 2:20. All the Scriptures the brethren introduce to support women speaking in public in mixed assemblies can be explained harmoniously and consistently with these plain prohibitions of God's Word. According to all principles of sound exegesis, in the language of Bro. Gambrell, their interpretation is "monstrous, impossible and wrong;" it arrays Scripture against Scripture and makes "certain and unmistakable" Scriptures to be contradicted by others, whose interpretation is to say the least of it doubtful.
The great apostle to the Gentiles tells his son Timothy to "hold fast to the pattern of sound words." Many Baptists have forgotten that exhortation. One of the most common phrases heard in our Baptist Zion today is about "kingdom work." It is neither scriptural nor sound. The Scriptures never use it. They talk about church work but never mention kingdom work. What the Scriptures are silent about is not scriptural. It is as unsound as it is unscriptural.
Two serious errors grow out of our much talk about kingdom work.
First, if our work is kingdom work, then since all the born-from-above are in the kingdom, "union" meetings and "union" missionary activities and "union" Sunday School work and many other unscriptural practices and agencies divert both funds and workers from scriptural church work on the plea that they are kingdom workers. Serious leakage, both of men and money, would be stopped and much needed time, money and work would be conserved to the spread of the truth, if our Baptist people would quit using the unscriptural expression "kingdom work" and magnify church work. No commission was ever given by our Lord and King to anybody, even though in the kingdom, who was not loyal enough to the King, to obey Him in baptism and become a member of His church. His commissions were given to church workers, not to kingdom workers.
And herein is the second serious hindrance to our
Obedience is the test of loyalty and love. And no one is obedient to Him, who substitutes sincerity for obedience. The institution, which He founded and called "My church," is the only one that He would recognize and own. Since the only time we find the expression "churches of Christ" in the New Testament, it is in the plural, the Holy Spirit thus testifies in the most convincing way possible, that the "My church" founded by the Lord Jesus, is a local and not a universal church. It makes lots of difference to Him, whether you belong to His church or some church founded by a man. And when you see your church works, that were wrought to build up some man's church instead of the one He built, go up in smoke and ashes at the last day and you are saved so as by fire, you will think it made a good deal of difference as to what church you joined.
But to my text.
1. A Local Church Spoken of in the Text
The first question that men ask, when they read this text is: What kind of a church did Paul mean, when he said the church is the pillar and ground of the truth? Catholics say
Protestant Pedo Baptists and others say he was speaking of the universal, invisible church, which they say includes all the saved.
The context shows conclusively, however, that Paul was speaking of a local church. In 1 Tim 3:8-14). Paul had been setting forth the qualifications and duties of bishops and deacons and their wives. They are officers in a local church. This is always true and their service as there outlined is limited to the individual church of which they are officials. The church spoken of in the text then must have been the local church, of which Timothy was pastor at this time. Jesse B. Thomas in his book, "The Church and Kingdom," on page 232 says of this passage: "It is singular that any reader of this epistle should interpret this personal counsel to a local pastor as to the proper behavior of a pastor or his people, in relation to the body, to which they both belong, as in any way referring to a world-church. For, in the first place, both house (household) and church are an anarthrous, as well as the words following. It should read 'a house of God which is a church of a living God, a pillar and a stay of the truth.' This implies as Hort concludes that 'Paul's idea is that each living society of Christians is a pillar and stay (bulwark) of the truth, as an object of belief and a guide of life for mankind.' It would have been useless to instruct Timothy as to the duties of a pastor of the church universal, for he held no such office, or the church invisible, for it has no officers at all."
The American Commentary says in loco: "Paul sends these instructions to Timothy that he may know how to conduct himself in the affairs of the Ephesian Church. The importance of guiding aright the affairs of the church is shown from the momentous relation of the church to the world as the pillar and base of the truth, in conserving and proclaiming divine truth among men. Each church is a column and base of the truth. It is God's chosen institution, by which His truth is
Strong's Theology says: "The whole church, not the bishop (so-called) is to maintain pure doctrine and practice." This is proven "from the committing the ordinances to the charge of the whole church to observe and guard. As a church expresses truth in her teaching, so she is to express it in symbol through her ordinances. Baptism and the Lord's Supper are not to be administered at the discretion of the individual minister. He is simply the organ of the church; pocket baptismal and communion services are without warrant. The only organized body known to the New Testament is the local church, and this is the only body of any sort, competent to have charge of the ordinances. The Invisible church has no officers. The Lord's Supper was observed by these churches as organized bodies." Pages 505, 551.
These testimonies are unanswerable and are abundant to prove that the church referred to in the text is a local church.
2. Each Baptist Church a Conserver and Propagator of the Truth.
The word translated "pillar" means a stay, a column, a support, that which upholds whatever is resting upon it. That means that every Baptist church is to uphold and defend the truth against all comers in its community. Wherever any Baptist church is recreant to that sacred trust, the truth falls to the ground in the community in which it is located. Wherever Baptists compromise, the truth is compromised: wherever Baptists are true to the faith, the truth is conserved and upheld and caused to stand. The only foundation that truth has in any community is the Baptist church in that community. No other church has the truth and if it had it, it is not strong enough to support it, because of the weakness of its foundation, being wholly of men. Only a church of Christ can support the truth, because no other has a foundation against which the very gates of hell themselves can not prevail. If the truth falls Christ is dishonored and the truth
Baptists are not simply to conserve the essentials, they are to conserve and preserve all the truth. The truth is a unit. It stands or falls together. "If Christ isn't Lord of all He isn't Lord at all." If Lord of all, He is Lord as to baptism and church-membership and tithing and world-wide missions and church polity. If these things are thrown into the scrap-heap on the plea that they are non-essentials, then His deity and God-hood go with them. He spoke as authoritatively about them as He did about His God-hood. There is more in the New Testament about close-communion than there is about the virgin birth: more about baptism than there is about His deity; more about church polity than there is about the resurrection: more about the work of the local churches than about the second coming of our Lord. The World's Sunday School Convention at Tokio some years back furnished indisputable proof, that when Fundamentalists scrap the Bible teachings about baptism, the Lord's Supper, church polity and church perpetuity, in order to get together on what they call the essentials, that in a pinch they will compromise the gospel, the deity of our Lord, the inspiration and authority of the Scriptures and every other so-called fundamental. The local churches of our Lord are the God-ordained pillars and conservers of the truth and only those churches, which are conserving all the truth, are really conserving any of it.
But not only is each local church a conserver of the truth: it is also a propagator of the truth. The word translated "ground" means a base, a bulwark, a base of supplies for the spread of the truth. Each church is to be not only a conserver of the truth, but a publisher and proclaimer of the truth. What a base of supplies was to the men at the front in the army, a Baptist church is to be to the gospel and the truth. Just as munitions and nurses and doctors and food and recruits were supplied the men at the front from the base of supplies; so every church of the Lord Jesus is to supply
Churches that are willing to be helped out of mission funds instead of helping to support missionaries who are carrying the gospel to others, are inferior churches and are not worth supporting long. They are cumberers of the ground and ought to die and get out of the way of churches that will be real bases of supplies for the truth. Eight or ten times in the New Testament we are told to be church-builders: never once are we told to be kingdom-builders. The command to make Baptists is as imperative as the command to make disciples or Christians. And the command to teach or indoctrinate the churches, thereby making them self-supporting, self-governing and self-propagating bases of supplies for the truth and the whole program of the Lord Jesus, is just as imperative as to make disciples or to make Baptists. If a church will not be made self-supporting and self-propagating, either in the mountains or in the cities in the homeland or on the mission fields, it ought to be turned out to die. When the Son of God told the church at Ephesus that if they did not repent and do their first works, He would remove their candlestick from them, He said in the plainest way possible, that if they did not become self-propagating
This is a big text; but it discusses a big subject. It takes a big text to tell all Paul here tells about the subject the Holy Spirit revealed through him. The subject matter was of God's choosing, not of Paul's; it was given to Paul by revelation, not something he evolved from his own reason. The messenger through whom God revealed His long hidden wisdom on this subject was also of God's choice. Paul was both an object and a subject of God's grace. Objectively he had been in God's purposes of grace a long time. From the ages he had been God's chosen instrumentality for the revelation of this long hidden mystery. Subjectively he had been apprehended by God's sovereign grace on the road to Damascus and God's purposes of grace for him unto all nations and all times, revealed in part both to him and in him, before he arose from the earth (Acts 26:16-18). God's purpose of grace included revealing Christ in him as well as to him. No man ever knows Christ simply by what he hears. Christ is revealed to him by the gospel of grace; but Christ is revealed in him
God's purposeful grace was revealed unto Paul in his salvation, in his call into the ministry, in his call to the mission field and in his call as God's chosen steward through whom His mysteries of grace and glory were to be revealed. God sought Paul: he was not seeking God. God called him into the ministry: no man called him out. God's call was effectual through the effectual working of His power. God's calls are all effectual both unto salvation and the ministry. God-called men are thrust into the ministry: they do not go into it themselves, neither are they called out by others. Paul was a minister by grace and a foreign missionary by grace: both of which mean that men had nothing to do with making him either a minister or a missionary. God's sovereign grace and power were not bestowed upon him in vain. This grace was bestowed upon him unto all nations and that grace did not fail to accomplish God's eternal purpose in him.
God's grace always works sovereignly and powerfully. No man can stay his hand or say unto him, What doest Thou? Paul's call was very definite. It would not have been of grace if it had not been. Grace leaves nothing to man's planning or choosing. There is no mixing of grace with any thing of man. Grace and works do not mix: neither do reason and revelation: neither do God's unchangeable plans and men's changeable ones. Grace bestows all her gifts through faith: and faith excludes all works or efforts or wisdom of men. Grace called Paul to a very definite work -- preaching the gospel and revealing Christ. It was to a very definite people -- the Gentiles -- the heathen. Grace was effectual in working out every detail of God's purpose for him, both in him and through him. He finished God's predestined course for him before the lion killed him. (2 Timothy 4:17, 7). The theme of this whole chapter is God's sovereign and effectual grace. God's purposes never fail.
1. What Is a Mystery?
A mystery isn't something we can not understand; but something that no man can reason out. As used by the Gnostics and other secret cults in Bible days it referred to the secrets of their orders, which only the initiated knew. As used in the Scriptures it refers to previously hidden truths, which the prophets and other wise men, desired to look into and probably tried to fathom; but which no man knew then or knows now except by divine revelation. In all of them there still remains the supernatural element, notwithstanding what the Scriptures reveal about them. The mysteries of the kingdom, of godliness, of the translation of the living saints, of Israel's blindness, of the incarnate Christ as the embodied fullness of the Godhead, of the seven stars and seven candlesticks and other Bible mysteries are still pried into by curious minds: but no man knows anything about any of them, except what is written. "Nothing beyond what is written" is true of all Bible mysteries. We know only what is revealed and there is still much about each of these mysteries that God has not seen fit to reveal. Many questions arise about them in inquiring minds but there is only the blackness of darkness, and no light at all, when we try to go beyond what God has revealed. He has revealed all we need to know.
2. The Mystery of the Church.
The mystery revealed in the text was one that had been hidden since the creation. God had hid it in Himself throughout all past ages. Paul was His chosen steward through whom He would turn the light upon this mystery. This mystery is as to His purpose and mission for a New Testament church. The greatness of this mystery is seen in that even after God has revealed it, men refuse to believe and try to make it mean
The church referred to in the text was neither a universal nor a universal invisible institution. It was the local Baptist church at Ephesus, to which Paul was writing.
3. Baptist Church Reveals God's Manifold Wisdom
Men can take great, compact organizations with their super-lords and intricate details and do things. Satan organizes his limitless forces of evil spirits, with their rulers of darkness and accomplishes wonders. God's "exceedingly various, multiform, multifarious, manifold, immense and infinite" wisdom is seen in that He has no great compact organization of any kind to accomplish and carry on His purposes and will. His only organizations are little, independent, local democracies, with no super-lords and no centralized power of government. Through them He will carry out His commission and make His gospel known to the ends of the earth.
First, it should be borne in mind, that this was hidden in God from creation until New Testament days. Nothing like a Baptist church was ever heard of until Jesus Christ came and organized
Paul went out without any centralized power or organization behind him, depending upon God and these little, independent democracies to support him in his world wide-missionary activities. All this is said in the text and fits only in and with God's missionary activities through Baptist churches in New Testament days, with no centralized head, government or power.
But in the second place do these little independent democracies reveal the "multiform and exceedingly varied" wisdom of God? If they do, we ought to be able to see that wisdom; for Paul said that God's purpose was through him to throw light upon how this mystery makes known God's many-coloured wisdom. Has God's wisdom been revealed through these little, independent churches through the centuries, and if so, how?
First, God's infinite wisdom has been revealed through the centuries in that He has perpetuated them from Christ's day until the present. Alexander Campbell said that "public monuments of their existence in every century can be produced." Ypeij and Dermout, Dutch Reformed historians, said: "On this account the Baptists may be considered as the only Christian community which has stood since the apostles, and as a Christian society, has preserved pure the doctrine of the gospel through
Prof. William Cecil Duncan, University of Louisiana, said: "Baptists do not, as do most Protestant denominations, date their origin from the Reformation of 1520. By means of that great religious movement, indeed, they were brought forth from comparative obscurity into prominent notice. . . . They did not, however, originate with the Reformation, for long before Luther lived, nay, long before the Roman Catholic Church herself was known, Baptists and Baptist churches existed and flourished in Europe, in Asia and in Africa."
Both God's wisdom and God's power have been seen in the perpetuity of Baptist churches: for Satan's compact organization of spirit forces, all the powers of Rome, the last mistress of the world, and the compact ecclesiastical organizations of both the Roman and Greek Catholic churches have all spent their utmost strength and combined powers to stamp out and destroy these little, independent democracies. Only the infinite wisdom and omnipotent power of our sovereign God could have prevented three such mighty and universal forces as these from accomplishing their aim. But Satan and his rulers of darkness; temporal Rome and her armies and fagots and stakes; and ecclesiastical Rome, with her intrigue, her bans, her councils and her conspiracies, have all failed to stamp out the Baptists. Thus have three worlds been forced to know and confess the manifold wisdom of God.
But again, not only have the preservation and perpetuity of Baptist churches, with their simple faith and lack of central control, against the three most compactly organized powers in the universe, namely, satanic spirits, ecclesiastical Rome and Rome, the mistress of the world, demonstrated God's manifold wisdom and mighty power: but His method of doing it has also revealed His matchless wisdom. He has never fought the devil with fire. He has not matched force against force. He has never raised any armies. Though always persecuted and hunted into the dens and caves and mountain fastnesses
And then the marvelous wisdom of God is manifested through Baptist churches to the world and to Satan's organized forces of evil in forces He uses. It is still true as it was in New Testament days that He uses "unlearned and ignorant men." He not only uses that kind, but He actually chooses that kind. "For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; and
Lastly, God has given a demonstration of His immense and muchly varied wisdom to kings and councils and hierarchies and ecclesiastical courts and satanic cabals, through little, independent, Baptist democracies in His choice of preaching for the spread of His truth. The wisdom of this world magnifies schools or social service or organization or money or publicity. The Bible doesn't. "It pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe." Baptists thrive in the country because it is there that they depend upon preaching. Preaching and teaching the Bible are God's two chosen agencies for the salvation of the lost and the edification and confirmation of the saved. Up in the Blue rass last summer we heard pastors talking about live societies in their churches and dead churches. They are organized to death. Some churches are lodged to death and some are clubbed to death and some are societyized to death and some are organized to death and some are starved to death and some are entertained to death and some are sung to death (but not with
Baptist churches from the foundation of the world in God's hidden purpose are His chosen agencies through which to demonstrate to earth, heaven, and hell, His infinite and many coloured wisdom. This demonstration is two-fold. He will demonstrate through them His wisdom and power in choosing them as His agencies for carrying His commission, to the ends of the earth and carrying out His purposes to the end of the age. And then He will demonstrate through them His manifold wisdom in perfecting the individual members
The last chapter in this book closes where the first one began. If it is in the Bible it is Baptist doctrine. If it is Baptist doctrine you can find it in the Bible. That is why every saved man and woman ought to be Baptists. Because Baptist doctrine is Bible doctrine and vice versa because Bible doctrine is Baptist doctrine is God's unanswerable reason why every child of God ought to be a Baptist. But says some one: "How am I to know that Baptist doctrine is Bible doctrine?" "What saith the Scriptures?" Test every doctrine by the Book. "Nothing beyond what is written." Here is the chapter and verse proving that 50 Baptist doctrines are Bible doctrines. If it is Baptist doctrine you can find it in the Bible.
1. The Bible Alone is Our Only and All-sufficient Rule of Faith and Practice.
"To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them" (Isaiah 8:20).
2. One God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
"Baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost" (Matthew 28:19, 20).
3. Jesus the Son of God was Very God of Very God.
"In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God" (John 1:1).
5. An Inerrant Bible.
"All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works" (2 Timothy 3:13-17).
6. The Virgin Birth of Jesus Christ.
"Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel" (Isaiah 7:14).
7. The Personality of the Devil.
"Your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour" (I Peter 5:8).
8. The Genesis Account of Creation.
"For by him all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist" (Colossians 1:16-17).
9. The Fall of Man.
"Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned. . . . By one man's disobedience many were made sinners" (Romans 5:12, 19).
10. The Sovereignty of God.
"The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand" (Isaiah 14:24).
11. Unconditional election.
"For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election
12. Free Moral Agency.
"And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life" (John 5:40).
13. Baptists are Individualists. No Proxies in Religion.
"So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God" (Romans 14:12).
14. Free Church in a Free State.
"Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's" (Matthew 22:21).
15. Salvation by grace.
"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them" (Ephesians 2:8-10).
16. Justification by faith. "But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness" (Romans 4:5).
17. Sanctification by blood.
"Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate" (Hebrews 13:12).
18. Repentance before faith.
"But the publicans and the harlots believed him: when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him" (Matthew 21:32).
19. Only the blood-washed in heaven.
"These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb" (Revelation 7:14).
20. Only one way to be saved.
"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).
22. No new birth without the gospel.
"Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever. -- And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you" (I Peter 1: 23-25).
23. The new birth of the Word and the Holy Spirit.
"Because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ" (II Thessalonians 2:13-14).
24. Eternal life a Present possession.
"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life" (John 3:36).
25. Children of God by faith.
"For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus" (Galatians 3:26).
26. Salvation before baptism.
"Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?" (Acts 10:47).
27. Once-for-all Salvation.
"For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 8:38-39).
28. Democratic church government.
"One is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren" (Matthew 23:8).
29. Church receives members. "Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubfful disputations" (Romans 14:1).
31. First Church founded by Christ.
"And God hath set some in the church, first apostles" (1 Corinthians 12:28). And when it was day, He (Jesus) called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also named apostles" (Luke 6:12-13).
32. The Lord's Supper a Church ordinance.
"For first of all when ye come together in the church" (I Corinthians 11:24-26).
33. Immersion of the Saved.
"Much water" (John 3:23). "Went down both into the water" (Acts 8:38). "Buried with him by baptism" (Romans 6:4). "Risen with Him" (1 Corinthians), "Straightway coming up out of the water" (Mark 1:10).
"The Lord added to them daily the saved" (Acts 2:47). Campbell's translation).
34. Baptist Baptism from Heaven.
"And all the people that heard him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John. But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of Him" (Luke 7:29-30).
35. Bishops and Deacons the two Church Officers.
"To all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons" (Philippians 1:1).
36. An Ordained Ministry.
"That thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city" (Titus 1:5).
37. World-wide Missions.
"And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature" (Mark 16:15).
38. This commission was given to the churches, which will be here until Jesus comes.
"Go ye therefore, and tmake disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the
39. Heathen Lost Without the Gospel.
"The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God" (Psalm 9:17).
"He that believeth shall be damned" (Mark 16:16).
"How shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard?" (Romans 10: 14).
40. The Lord's Day, the Day of Worship.
"Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come" (I Corinthians 16:2).
41. Degrees In Heaven.
"If any man's work abide which he hath built -- thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire" (I Corinthians 3:14-15).
42. The Final Judgment.
"For the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation" (John 5:28-29).
43. The Resurrection of the Body.
"Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: he is risen; he is not here: behold the place where they laid him" (Mark 16:6).
44. Resurrection of Saints.
"Christ the first fruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming" (1 Corinthians 15:23).
45. The Second Coming of our Lord.
"And, behold I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be" (Revelation 22:12).
46. A Never-ending Heaven of Bliss.
"I go and prepare a place for you,. And if I go and prepare a
47. An Unending Hell of Fire and Brimstone.
"And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night" (Revelation 14:11).
48. No Second Chance.
"And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" (Hebrews 9:27).
49. No Annihilation.
"It is better for thee to enter halt into life, than having two feet to be cast into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched" (Mark 9:45-46).
50. The End of All Who Believe in Salvation by Works.
"Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity" (Matthew 7:22-23).
The proof is abundant that if it is Baptist doctrine, you can find it in the Bible. Why ought you to be a Baptist then? You ought not to be, unless you take the Bible as your only and all-sufficient rule of faith and practice. If you should be a Baptist for any other reason than that, you would be a hypocrite. Love to Christ and love for the Bible are the only reasons why anybody should be a Baptist. The mightiest preacher of the ages said: "If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ let him be accursed when Jesus comes." If he has been born again he will love the Lord Jesus. The Lord Jesus Himself said: "If you love me, keep my commandments." You cannot keep His commandments without being a Baptist. That is why you ought to be a Baptist. Love for the Lord Jesus and love for the truth will make every born-again man in the world a Baptist, if he will obey the Book. That has been tried in every country in this world today, where the Bible is read and loved and obeyed. In India and Burma and Germany and Russia and Persia and Bulgaria and Brazil
[H. Boyce Taylor, Sr., Why Be a Baptist?, Second Edition, 1928. There were 1,000 copies printed in the first edition; there were 50,000 copies printed in this second edition. - jrd]