A Brief Look At Baptist Origins



This was work done for for Church History 665 for a discussion board assignment. Hence the beginning questions and the way I have written my response about baptist origins.

List and summarize the 4 views of Baptist origin. Which view is most convincing? Why? Give specific reasons in your response.

Well according to the McBeth text and the presentation by Dr. King, there are four possible origins to the Baptist denomination. The first view that is discussed is that of the Separatist. Not only are the separatist the first ones discussed, but in my humble opinion they are the most likely candidates for being the beginning of the denomination. Since I am a PCA guy, I am finding this to be rather interesting. Back to the separatist, there were two different categories for them the general Baptist and the Particular Baptist.

Another option for the origination of the Baptist denomination is from the Anabaptist movement. Some say since the movement required the baptism of adult believers on their confession that this is solely responsible for the beginning of the Baptist cause. Their theology doesn’t point to what the Baptist of the 17th century believe, therefore they have separate understandings.

The third view is known as the organic view, thinking that it gets its roots all the way back to the time of Jesus and the New Testament church. And lastly there is the view of the Jesus- John- Jordan view and the trial of blood where some try and argue that Baptist have an unbroken trail throughout the history of the church all the way back to the times of Jesus. This is considered by some to be an extremist view.

For this author who originally believed before this weeks reading that Baptist would be traced back to the Anabaptist. While they shared some similarities to the movement of the separatist there doesn’t seem to be enough of a connection between the two for me to fully support that theory any longer.

So now I tend to lean toward the Separatist movement as the beginning of the Baptist denomination. To help support my claim are the words of McBeth, “The modern Baptist denomination originated in England and Holland in the early seventeenth century. Baptists emerged out of intense reform movements, shaped by such radical dissent as Puritanism, Separatism, and possibly Anabaptism.”[1] While McBeth argued that the Particular Baptist have had more of an influence on todays denomination, what I understand it seems like the General Baptist have had the greater impact on the denomination. I say that as an outsider looking in without the complete understanding of everything going on. I follow certain SBC things on social media so I can stay abreast of discussions going on. It seems like the Particular Baptist are starting to make come back especially in the SBC.

Question: According to history what do you believe to be the origins of the baptist denomination? 


. H.
Leon McBeth. The Baptist Heritage. (Nashville, B&H Publishing, 1987, Kindle Edition) 21.

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