Thursday, September 4, 2008

Baptist History Celebration 2007

Recently I obtained a copy of “Baptist History Celebration 2007: A Symposium on Our History, Theology, and Hymnody”, a volume containing addresses given at the Tercentenary Anniversary Tribute to the founding of the Philadelphia Baptist Association. The conference was held at First Baptist Church of Charleston and had many speakers on several subjects.

Flipping through the pages just to survey the book, I stumbled onto the article “Transatlantic Patterns in Baptist Theology 1609 to 1800” by William H. Brackney. I turned to the final paragraphs of the article to see Dr. Brackney’s conclusion and read the following:

After more reflection and discovery of local congregational and personal theological data, and with the inclusion of multiple types of Baptists in England and North America 1600-1750, we can reach several ongoing conclusions. First, on both sides of the Atlantic in their early development Baptists were a theologically engaging people. The charge that we have no theology or that our theology is a poor version of someone else’s, must be permanently silenced. … We can go even farther and assert that early Baptists lie in the stream called the Reformed tradition (read Calvin, with a spoonful of Luther and Hubmaier) in contrast with other possibilities like the Catholic, Orthodox, Anglican, or spiritualist alternatives. What distinguished all of our theological reflection from the rest was our preoccupation with ecclesiology. … Baptists have felt deeply that such matters were not extraneous to the theological task but inherent in it.

There is a lot to discuss in that one paragraph alone and, one day, maybe I will do so.

I look forward to reading through this collection of what appears to be great pieces on Baptist History!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is a great volume. I'm glad you have a copy.