Wednesday, April 16, 2014

What the first Hardshells Believed VIII

For the "Primitive Baptist" periodical for 1845 (see here)

"Shall Baptists admit in their churches this long-condemned heresy?  Shall they unite with those who hold the doctrine of Cassian, Pelagius, or the Roman church, and reject the doctrine of the Reformation, the doctrine of the Baptists published in their Confession of Faith more than 200 years ago, and adopted by the first Association of Baptists in the United States, viz. the Philadelphia Association? Shall they reject the doctrine of the Bible, and shrink from a faithful discharge of duty, from faithfully declaring all the counsel of God, for the sake of money, applause, or members, or for fear of offending a gainsaying world?"

The "Primitive" or "Hardshell" Baptists of 1845 thought ill of those Baptists who "reject" 1) the doctrine of the Reformation, or "Reformed" doctrine, and 2) the doctrine of the 1689 London Confession, and 3) the beliefs of the Philadelphia Association.  Yet, today's Hardshells claim to oppose "Reformed" doctrine, rejecting its teaching regarding the absolute predestination of all things, of the use of means in the eternal salvation of sinners, and its teaching regarding justification by faith. They also disclaim the 1689 Confession but the first Hardshells did not. Today's Hardshells also reject being styled "Calvinists" for these reasons, though their forefathers had no hesitancy in claiming to be Calvinists. It seems that today's Hardshells are far less "primitive" or "original" than what they think.

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