History of Baptists Essay

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In Baptist history there has always been differences in doctrine. This has unfortunately resulted, at times, to separate believers from one another. This can be evident from comparing two American Baptist confessions. The most notable difference in doctrine between The Philadelphia Confession of 1742 and A Treatise on the Faith of the Free Will Baptists, 1834 and 1948 is the doctrine of Calvinism versus free-will. The Philadelphia Confession supported Calvinism and the Free Will Baptists supported Arminianism. A closer look at these two confessions show that throughout Baptist history certain doctrines remain constant while others are debated and cause separation of believers. However, this has not stopped the Gospel message to be preached…show more content…
The Scriptures were written under the inspiration of God and are sufficient for faith and life (PCF I.1). The Philadelphia Confession views Scripture as infallible and written through men by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. There is nothing outside of the written Scriptures that are to be acknowledged as authoritative. The Philadelphia Confession rejects the Apocrypha or any other writing by man to be approved by the church of God (PCF I.3). The Free Will Baptists had a similar view of Scripture. The Baptist Confession states that both the Old and New Testaments were written by men through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The Scriptures are sufficient, infallible, and without error. It also concludes that the Scriptures are a sufficient guide to salvation (FWB I). The Philadelphia confession differs in this regard to the Scriptures as it states the Scriptures are not sufficient “to give that knowledge of God and his will which is necessary unto salvation” (PCF I.1). Both confessions view Scripture as authoritative, but the difference concerning salvation will become more apparent as will be seen in the further doctrines.
Divine Providence With the doctrine of divine providence one can see the differences concerning God’s activity in the world between these two confessions. The Philadelphia Confession declares that God is in
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