Baptist Catholicity: Sacramental Theology

…it’s this. I disagree with viewing the ordinances as sacraments to begin with, but more importantly I disagree that learning from the authority of the Great Tradition necessarily requires Baptists to change a piece of our theology that we can trace to the early 1600s. A few weeks ago, I posed a question about sacramental theology on my Facebook. Should …

Baptist Catholicity: Community as a Locus of Authority

I was in a small town Southern Baptist Church, working with a congregation who had been through far too much pain, and kids who had been neglected as a result. Nobody had intended to let the students down, it was just that in the midst of a painful church split, death of a pastor, and fire through the church building, …

Baptist Catholicity: Liturgy in Worship

…that I would love to take again. You see, at the time I was familiar with one particular style of worship, and I wasn’t particularly open to new thoughts. Worship at my church during that time looked something like this: There’s nothing wrong with this means of worship, and I suspect many Baptist churches would look something like this today. …

Baptist Catholicity: Creeds in Worship

Perhaps one of our most closely held beliefs as Baptists. No statement of faith can confine us, no “instrument of doctrinal accountability” can decide who we hire and who we work with. Why in the world would Baptists, of all people, be interested in using creeds in worship? If you remember your recent baptist history, creedal disagreements over the basic …

Baptist Catholicity: Tradition as Authority

is a sentence where the author declares something a “clear heresy”. I underlined the passage in frustrated anxiety and wrote in the margins “according to who?!” The book presented a variety of views on important issues in the faith, then would narrow down and exclude beliefs considered by that author to be heresy. I didn’t understand how someone could so …

Authority: Sacred Direction of a Diverse Body

If you take a look around most Baptist churches, and ask who is in charge, I would be willing to bet that most people would point you to the Senior Pastor. Baptist churches with elders or a particularly powerful Executive Pastor might give you some direction toward those figures. Perhaps you would get pointed towards an influential member or a …

Book Review: One Nation Under God

This weekend I finished Kevin Kruse’s book One Nation Under God: How Corporate America Invented Christian America. Being a student of faith and eventually wanting to become a student of business, this book had particular importance to me. Kruse presents a lengthy, detailed history of about 100 or so years of American political, religious, and business life in his work, …

Tough Sayings: I didn’t come to Bring Peace

×This Post is Part of a SeriesFor the next little bit we'll be looking at some of the difficult things Jesus said. I’m using a curriculum to guide this discussion, but if you have additional sayings of Jesus to cover, I’d love to do them. Just comment about it!Luke 12:49-53 49I came to cast fire on the earth, and would ...

Tough Sayings: Blasphemy

×This Post is Part of a SeriesFor the next few months we’re looking at some of the difficult things Jesus said. I’m using a curriculum to guide this discussion, but if you have additional sayings of Jesus to cover, I’d love to do them. Just comment about it!Matthew 12:22-37 22Then a demon-oppressed man who was blind and mute was brought ...

Tough Sayings: You People are Dogs

×This Post is Part of a SeriesFor the next few months we're looking at some of the difficult things Jesus said. I'm using a curriculum to guide this discussion, but if you have additional sayings of Jesus to cover, I'd love to do them. Just comment about it!Matthew 15:21-28 21Jesus left that place and went away to the district of ...