Mar. 11, 2017 “Confessional Piety” Doctrine & Devotion Conf. feat. J. Renihan & Thorn in St. Charles, IL.

Doctrine and Devotion’s first conference is happening on March 11th, 2017 in the western suburbs of Chicago. This one day event will focus on the use of confessions in the life of the Christian and the local church as it relates to faith and godliness.

Sessions:

  • “Why Confessions?” – Dr. Jim Renihan
  • “Confessions and Scripture” – Dr. Jim Renihan
  • “Why The 1689 Confession?” – Dr. Jim Renihan
  • “The Christian Who Confesses” – Joe Thorn
  • Q&A – Renihan + Thorn

DETAILS

Tom Ascol interviews Dr. Tom Nettles on beginnings of the SBC, New Calvinism + more [VIDEO]

Founders Ministries:

In this interview, Dr. Tom Ascol asks Dr. Tom Nettles about the beginnings of the Southern Baptist Convention. Dr. Nettles, as a well-respected baptist historian, considers three things present at the founding of the Southern Baptist Convention worth recovering.

VIdeo [44 min.]:


For more, check out:



By His Grace and for His Glory:

A Historical Theological, and Practical Study of the Doctrines of Grace in Baptist Life

by Thomas J. Nettles


Gospel Heritage of Georgia Baptists

THE GOSPEL HERITAGE OF GEORGIA BAPTISTS: 1772 – 1830
Who Were They and What Did They Believe?

by Kurt Smith and Brandon Smith with Introduction by Tom Nettles




Paul Brewster on SBC History: GA Baptist Assocation & Sandy Creek

1st 3 books in the “Recovering our Confessional Heritage” series OUT NOW! [IRBS | RBAP]

recovering-confessional-heritage-books

The series is sponsored by the Institute of Reformed Baptist Studies in cooperation with RBAP. The Institute of Reformed Baptist Studies is a graduate theological school which aids churches in preparing men to serve in the Gospel Ministry. For more information please visit irbsseminary.org.

The purpose of the series . . . is to address issues related to the Second London Confession of Faith of 1677/89 (2LCF). . . . The series will include treatments of various subjects by multiple authors. The subjects to be covered are those the series editors (along with consultants) determine to be of particular interest in our day. The authors will be those who display ample ability to address the issue under discussion. Some of the installments will be more involved than others due to the nature of the subject addressed and perceived current needs. Many of the contributions will cover foundational aspects of the self-consistent theological system expressed in the Confession. Others will address difficult, often misunderstood, or even denied facets of the doctrinal formulations of the 2LCF. Each installment will have a “For Further Reading” bibliography at the end to encourage further study on the issue discussed.

~ from the series editors, James M. Renihan and Richard C. Barcellos

Read the purpose of the “Recovering our Confessional Heritage” series.


defense-of-confessionalism

A Defense of Confessionalism:
Biblical Foundations & Confessional Considerations

by Arden L. Hodgins, Jr.

Arden Hodgins
Arden Hodgins

[This book] seek to show how creeds and confessions exist in every church, denomination, or association, though they are not always written down…
the biblical warrant for creeds and confessions is established…
a further definition of what a confession of faith is and how it differs from the Scriptures…
the confession is shown to be a consensus document, both in its original formation and in its continued function…
addresses very briefly the matter of words and terms and the need to understand the authorial intent of the confession…
practical applications, addressed primarily to ministers and elders…

Pages: 118


associational-churchmanship

Associational Churchmanship:
Second London Confession of Faith 26.12-15

by James M. Renihan

Dr. James Renihan
Dr. James Renihan

Theology does not occur in a vacuum. It develops out of real-life situations. Men study the Word of God, contemplate its teaching, and express their conclusions. Often it is the circumstances of life that force them to think more closely and clearly about their doctrinal views and that sharpen the expressions of truth. When Arius challenged the divinity of Christ, Christians faced new questions, and the result of the debate was a clearer view of the deity of our Savior. We could give many illustrations from the history of the Church of that increasing clarity and understanding in the Creeds and Confessions of Christianity.

The doctrine of associational churchmanship expressed in our Confession is another one of these circumstances. Our discussion will involve the following: first, the three ways to describe interchurch relations; second, the church in the Second London Confession of Faith (2LCF); third, an overview of chapter 26.1-11 and brief exposition of 26.12-13; fourth associationalism; and finally, a conclusion and application.

Pages: 90


covenant-of-works

The Covenant of Works:
Its Confessional and Scriptural Basis

by Richard C. Barcellos

Dr. Richard Barcellos
Dr. Richard Barcellos

Moses, writing after the historical acts of creation, utilizes the covenantal name of God, Yahweh, while discussing Adam’s Edenic vocation (Gen. 2:4ff.). Isaiah utilizes concepts that started with Adam to explain the universal guilt of man, while using the word “covenant” (Isa. 25:5-6). Hosea, looking back upon previous written revelation, makes explicit what was implicit in it. The prophet’s inspired words give us God’s infallible knowledge of one of the similarities between ancient Israel and Adam. Both had a covenant imposed on them by God and both transgressed their covenants (Hos. 6:7). Paul, while reflecting on Adam’s Edenic vocation, contrasts the disobedience of Adam and its results with the obedience of Christ and its results (Rom. 5:19). The term “works” in the phrase “covenant of works” contrasts with “grace” and “gift” in Romans 5:17. Paul asserts that Adam was a type of Christ (Rom. 5:14). Adam sinned and fell short of the glory of God (Rom. 3:23). Christ did not sin (Heb. 4:15) and, upon his resurrection, entered into glory (Luke 24:46; Acts 26:19-23; 1 Pet. 1:10-12), a quality of life conferred upon him due to his obedience (Rom. 5:21). This is the life he confers upon all believers.

These scriptural realities, understood by the utilization of the hermeneutical principles of the Holy Spirit as the only infallible interpreter of Holy Scripture, analogia Scriptura, analogia fidei, and scopus Scripturae, led to the confessional formulation of the doctrine of the covenant of works.

Pages: 138

Radio interview w/ Michael Haykin on “The Baptist Story: From English Sect to Global Movement” [Iron Sharpens Iron]

IronSharpens

From a recently posted Iron Sharpens Iron Radio from July 5, 2016 with Chris Arnzen:

michael haykinDR. MICHAEL HAYKIN,
Professor of Church History & Biblical Spirituality (2008),
Director of the Andrew Fuller Center for Baptist Studies at
The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, KY
& author of
Baptist Story BookTHE BAPTIST STORY: From English Sect to Global Movement

2 hour audio [mp3]:

Tom Ascol’s radio interview on “Bringing Maturity to Young, Restless & Reformed” [Iron Sharpens Iron]

From the recently posted April 19, 2016 Iron Sharpens Iron radio show:

Pastor Tom Ascol
Pastor Tom Ascol

TOM ASCOL,

Executive Director of Founders Ministries
to discuss

Six Ways a Church Should Use a Confession of Faith [Jeff Robinson]

Founders:

Particular Baptist churches planted in the tumultuous soil of 17th century England grew up and bore fruit under a nasty set of doctrinal and methodological accusations, including that they subscribed to libertarian free will, denied original sin, that their pastors baptized women in the nude, and were opponents of church and crown.

Perhaps their most virulent and colorful opponent, Daniel Featley—a separatist persecutor deluxe—derisively dismissed our Baptist forebears, writing in a venom-filled pamphlet, “They pollute our rivers with their filthy washings.” Such was Baptist life under Charles I.

These nefarious charges and numerous others arose from leaders of the state church and led to decades of grinding persecution for Baptists. Seven churches returned fire, but not by brandishing the sword of steel or by hurling theological invectives. The seven carried out their war for truth by wielding the sword of the Spirit. The product was the most comprehensive expression of orthodox Baptist theology ever written—the Second London Confession of 1689.

church pewThe signers of that venerable confession lived and moved in an age in which most local congregations wrote confessions of faith for a number of reasons, one of them to demonstrate their commitment to the historic Christian faith. Additionally, they sought to manifest their solidarity with the prevailing forms of Calvinistic orthodoxy as well as to expound the basic elements of their ecclesiology. The Second London Confession also aimed at refuting popular notions associating Particular Baptists with the radical wing of the Anabaptist movement on the continent.

Of primary importance, they saw biblical warrant for the practice of confessionalism in texts such as 1 Timothy 3:16, where the apostle Paul’s inspired pen produced a brief but beautiful display of the mystery of godliness:

Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness:
He was manifested in the flesh,
vindicated by the Spirit,
seen by angels,
proclaimed among the nations,
believed on in the world,
taken up in glory.

Fast-forward to 2016 and many Baptist churches continue to have statements of faith “on the books” as a part of their foundational documents. Yet, I’ve found that many churches do not know how useful the confession can be beyond establishing subscription to certain core doctrines. This raises a fundamental question: How should a local church use their confession of faith? Here are six ways a church might use a confession of faith. I owe at least four of these to my friend Sam Waldron’s fine work, A Modern Exposition of the 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith(Evangelical Press). Confessions of faith should be used:

1. As an affirmation and defense of the truth…

2. As a baseline for church discipline…

3. As a means of theological triage and Christian maturity…

4. As a concise standard by which to evaluate ministers of the Word…

5. As a doctrinal basis for planting daughter churches…

6. As a means of establishing historical continuity and unity with other Christians…

Read more on the above six points.

ARBCA 2016 General Assembly audio now online. Feat. Miller, J. Renihan, D. Lindblad, Crosby, Hodgins, Slate, Waters

arbca gaAudio from the 2016 Association of Reformed Baptist Churches of America (ARBCA) General Assembly [which took place on April 26-28, 2016 at Grace Reformed Baptist Church in Rockford, Illinois] , is now online:

Devotional John 17:1-5 | Thomas Waters [mp3]:

Redemption Accomplished | Pastor Jerry Slate [mp3]:

A Defense of Confessionalism | Arden Hodgins [mp3]:

A Tale of Two Associations Revisited | James M. Renihan [mp3]:

Devotional John 17:6-19 | Rob Cosby [mp3]:

Propitiation Accomplished | Don Lindblad [mp3]:

Associational Churchmanship: LBC 26:12-15 | James M. Renihan [mp3]:

Devotional John 17:20-26 | John Miller [mp3]:

Consider the 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith [J. Ryan Davidson]

1689 Leather EditionJ. Ryan Davidson:

Huddled together in 1644, representatives of 7 churches gathered to summarize their common confession, and to distinguish themselves from the Anabaptists and the Arminians. It was a time of turmoil, and the river of the Reformation had swept across the banks of London. This was one of the first of several non-Anglican groups in that century to put pen to paper and confess their faith. Two years later, the Westminster Assembly would produce its own confession (WCF), and then in 1658, the Congregationalists would follow suit (Savoy Declaration). That original group of 7 churches was the Particular Baptists. Amid persecution, and to show their solidarity and theological agreement in many ways with the Presbyterians and Congregationalists that had since written their own confessions, a larger crop of Baptists would draft the 1677 Baptist Confession with great reliance on the WCF and Savoy, however due to persecution, this document would not be published until 1689, giving it the name that it is known by today: “The 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith”. This Confession was classically theist in its view of God, covenantal in its view of Biblical Theology, “Calvinist” in its soteriology, and would show alignment with the Westminster Confession of Faith on the Ordinary Means of Grace and the Law. I grew up Baptist, became Calvinistic in my soteriology in my teen years, and have found a wonderful home in the confessional roots of Baptist theology as a pastor in my mid-thirties. To me, this Historic Confession, similar to the Westminster Confession of Faith and the Savoy Declaration, is worth considering for at least five reasons:

  1. For Baptists influenced by the ‘New Calvinism’, it is helpful to see that for Baptists, Calvinism is not “new”…

  2. It contains a wonderful vision for the Christian life…

  3. There is value in saying more sometimes…

  4. Historic Confessions ground us…

  5. Believer’s Baptism has much of its roots in a Covenant Theology…

Read the explanations of each of the five above points.

The 1689 Baptist Confession: Its Purpose & Theology [Dr. Michael Haykin | RBS | 2 AUDIOS/VIDEOS]

1689Dr. Bob Gonzales:

Dr. Michael Haykin
Dr. Michael Haykin

The confessional standard of the seminary I serve is the Second London Baptist Confession, a.k.a., the 1689 Baptist Confession. In the two lectures below, Dr. Michael Haykin, one of our seminary lecturers and the Professor of Church History and Biblical Spirituality at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, looks at purpose and theology of the Confession. What were some of the historical factors that motivated 17th century Particular Baptists to draft and, later, adopt the Confession in 1689? And what are some of the unique theological contributions that distinguish the 2LCF? Watch the videos or download the audios and learn. Also note that these lectures form part of the curriculum for the seminary’s course HT 501 Creeds & Confessions, which you may audit here.

The 2LCF: Its Purpose [20 min.]

In this lecture, Dr Haykin looks at the reasons why the 17th century Particular Baptists drafted and adopted the Second London Baptist Confession, rather than simply reprinting and continuing to use the First London Baptist Confession.

m4a:


The 2LCF: Its Theology [25 min.]

In the second of his two lectures on the 2LCF, Dr Haykin highlights some of the theological distinctives and contributions of the Second London Baptist Confession.

m4a:

Tom Nettles Interviews Tom Ascol on the 1689 [Founders Journal]

Founders Journal · Summer 2005 · pp. 4-9 has an interview, conducted by Tom Nettles, with Pastor Tom Ascol on the Second London Confession of 1689. It begins:

founders journal summer 2005Start by telling us how long your church has used the 1689 Confession.

Since 1989 Grace Baptist Church in Cape Coral, Florida has been guided by a commitment to the 1689 (Second London) Confession of Faith. We adopted that confession as a detailed expression of our doctrinal commitments as a church and for the purpose of guiding us in the selection of officers, teachers and other leaders in the church. We use the edition that is published by the elders of Grace Baptist Church in Carlisle, PA, but also allow for the use of the Carey edition, entitled A Faith to Confess. This latter edition employs modern language and is more easily read by some.[1]

Pastor Tom Ascol
Pastor Tom Ascol

How does using a confession of faith benefit a church body?

A church can receive great benefit from properly using a (or more than one) confession of faith. By adopting a confession of faith a clear statement is made that on certain matters of faith and practice the church is pre-committed. That is, the church declares, “We are not looking for truth in these areas, we believe that we have found the truth of God’s Word on these subjects and this is what our views are.” This kind of pre-commitment is very useful in times of doctrinal uncertainty or controversy. If some members come to convictions that are contrary to the church’s confession, then those members can be addressed on the basis of what the church has previously stated to be its views. Further, those seeking to join the church have in the confession a clear declaration of what can be expected in the preaching and teaching ministry.

A good confession can help promote the unity of the church. Opinions are not all equally valid and where there exists in a church a common commitment to a list of doctrinal convictions, those views that deviate from or contradict that commitment can be readily recognized and addressed. No church can long survive if it must continually reevaluate each and every doctrine when at once it is questioned.

A good confession can also help a church grow spiritually. Such a confession represents the collective wisdom of trusted teachers. It can prove to be a great source of instruction for those who are committed to understanding and applying biblical truth. A confession serves as a reminder of what God has taught others whose lives and views we respect. It can be consulted as a guide in Bible study, or can actually provide an outline for a doctrinal study of the Word.

Dr. Tom Nettles
Dr. Tom Nettles

What are the doctrinal strengths of the Second London Confession [2LC]?

The doctrinal strengths of the 2LC are seen in the comprehensiveness of its thirty-two chapters. Matters related to the heart of salvation are addressed in detail in at least twelve of those chapters, covering everything from “God’s Covenant” (chapter 7) to the “Assurance of Grace and Salvation” (chapter 18).

In addition to these soteriological chapters, the confession also treats matters related to the life and health of a local church. Twelve chapters address the Bible’s teachings on the law, gospel, Christian liberty, worship, the Sabbath, oaths, civil government, marriage, the church, communion of the saints and the ordinances (chapters 19–30).

In addition, chapters on authority (1), the nature and sovereignty of God (2–5), sin (5) and last things (31, 32) are included. All of these subjects are important to the spiritual vitality of individual believers and churches. As a believer grows in the grace and knowledge of the Lord, these are matters that he will discover he must develop opinions and perhaps even convictions on. It is very helpful for a local church to state plainly its position on these matters. Members can expect the teaching and preaching ministries of the church to be within these confessional boundaries. The confession can also be used as an excellent tool for the systematic study of biblical doctrines. The insights of those who have gone before us and whose testimonies have proven faithful are invaluable aids in study and growth…

The rest contain answers to the following questions:

  • Do you think that the length of the articles is helpful or confusing?

  • How does it serve in the process of a person becoming a church member?

  • Do pastors/elders relate differently to the 2LC than those members that are not so called?

  • How does it serve in the educational process of the church?

  • How does it serve in the discipline of the church?

  • How is it related to biblical exposition in the church?

  • Another idea you would like to cover

 

Read the entire interview.

[HT: @1689_LBCF]

AUDIO from “Not Ashamed” Building Tomorrow’s Church 2015 Conf. feat. James Renihan & James White now online

Audio from the 2015 Building Tomorrow’s Church is now online:

btc2015

Session 1 | Truth: A Biblical Worldview | Dr. Jim Renihan

Session 2 | “The Foundation of Truth” | Dr. James White

Bonus Session 1 | “The Confession of Our Faith” | Dr. Jim Renihan

Session 3 | “The Example of Truth” | Dr. James White

Session 4 | “The Actions of Truth” | Dr. Jim Renihan

Bonus Session 2 | “The Defense of Our Faith” | Dr. James White

Session 5 | “The Buttress of Truth” | Dr. Jim Renihan

(L to R) James Renihan, James White, John Giarrizzo
(L to R) James Renihan, James White, John Giarrizzo

Bonus Session 3 | Q+A | Dr. Renihan, Dr. White, Pastor John Giarrizzo

BTC2015More photos from BTC 2015

Rob Ventura interviewed on “Knowing The Truth” Radio regarding “Going Beyond the Five Points” [Audio]

Going Beyond the Five PointsIn case you didn’t get enough info about the new book Going Beyond the Five Points: Pursuing a More Comprehensive Reformation from our last two interviews (part 1 | part 2), the general editor of the book, Rob Ventura, was interviewed on the “Knowing the Truth” Radio with Kevin Boling.

knowingthetruthThey cover TULIP, each chapter of the book (The Ten Commandments and the Christian, The Regulative Principle, Covenant Theology, The Church,The Legitimacy and Use of Confessions of Faith) and take a call about music in worship.

52 min. mp3:

Interview #89 – Going Beyond the 5 Points – Earl Blackburn & Rob Ventura [Audio Podcast] (2 of 2)

Going Beyond the Five Points

ConfessingBaptistPodcastLogo

Pastor Rob Ventura
Pastor Rob Ventura
Pastor Earl Blackburn
Pastor Earl Blackburn

“I would hope that any evangelical believer would pick it up and read it.”

On episode 89 of our interview podcast we finishes up our two part interview with Pastor Earl Blackburn and Pastor Rob Ventura about the new book “Going Beyond the Five Points: Pursuing a More Comprehensive Reformation”.

Part 1 of the interview.

TOPICS:

  • What is your disagreements with “1689 Federalism”?
  • What is the church and why is it so important?
  • How do you respond to those who disagree with church membership?
  • What kind of church should we be looking for to become members of?
  • Is it legitimate for us to subscribe to confessions of faith?
  • + more

LISTEN:

Subscribe to the podcast in a RSS readeriTunesStitcherTuneIn or by Email.

LINKAGE:

New Book: ‘Going Beyond the Five Points: Pursuing a More Comprehensive Reformation’ feat. Barcellos, Waldron, Blackburn, R. Martin, Ventura, White

Out now as previously announced:

Blank bookcover with clipping path

Going Beyond the Five Points:
Pursuing a More Comprehensive Reformation

By Dr. Richard C. Barcellos,  Dr. Sam Waldron, Earl M. Blackburn,  Dr. Robert Martin

General Editor: Rob Ventura

[AMZ: $25/£16.34 SGCB: $17.50 RR: $17 | Kindle: $4.99/£3.23]

Description:

In recent years, a doctrinal shift has taken place among believers so great that even the secular press has taken notice. Christians across denominational lines are laying hold of the biblical truth of God’s electing love and saving grace in Christ, commonly called “Calvinism.” For many, this marks the beginning of a deeper study into the whole counsel of God in Scripture. A thirst to be thoroughly biblical in all areas of life is driving a more comprehensive present-day reformation beyond the famous “five points.” This book captures the voices of seasoned Reformed pastors graciously guiding and encouraging Christ’s beloved sheep to press on and to seek the “old paths, where the good way is” (Jer. 6:16). In this anthology you will be instructed concerning the abiding relevance of the Ten Commandments, God-centered worship, the masterful unfolding of God’s great plan of redemption through divine covenants, the identity, nature, and work of the church, and the help that confessions of faith lend to our grasp of God’s glorious Word.

Table of Contents:

Contributors

Editor’s Preface | Rob Ventura

Foreword | Dr. James White

Chapter 1 – The Ten Commandments and the Christian | Dr. Richard C. Barcellos

Chapter 2 – The Regulative Principle | Dr. Sam Waldron

Chapter 3 – Covenant Theology | Earl Blackburn

Chapter 4 – The Church | Earl Blackburn

Chapter 5 – The Legitimacy and Use of Confessions of Faith | Dr. Robert Paul Martin

Endorsements:

Fred MaloneThe rediscovery of “the doctrines of grace” among Baptists during the last sixty years has thrilled my heart! However, this welcome advance does not make a reformation. The further necessary questions of “what is the church?…how should we worship God?…what is Christ like living?…” stand before us still, begging for biblical reformation. Going Beyond the Five Points provides clear biblical direction for reforming churches today. Barcellous’ defense of the Ten Commandments for Christian living under grace is unassailable. Blackburn’s chapters on Covenant Theology and the doctrine of the church are indispensable to Baptist reformation. Waldron’s explanation of the Regulative Principle is greatly needed by Baptists to remind us of our foundational principle which needs renewed application to worship and government. Martin’s persuasive defense of why Baptists need confessions of faith today is irrefutable. To gather them together as Ventura has done provides a classic standard for further Baptist reformation today. Baptist pastors, students, and church members need to study this book to understand what it means to build biblical and Reformed Baptist churches today for the glory of Christ.

Dr. Fred A. Malone, Senior Pastor First Baptist Church Clinton, Louisiana


Pastor Jim SavastioGoing Beyond the Five Points is a wonderful pastoral resource to give to any brother or sister in Christ who has begun the journey of better understanding the doctrines of grace. If the Five Points are the appetizer for the hungry believer, these essays will provide a rich and satisfying main course to guide them in a deeper understanding of the truth.

Jim Savastio, Pastor of Reformed Baptist Church of Louisville, Kentucky


Jeremy WalkerSome truths lie close to the surface, others require more digging. In the substance of this book, you will profit from the groundbreaking labours of others, men who have begun to turn over the soil in order to expose the consequences and applications of a thorough embrace of God’s sovereign grace displayed in the salvation of his people, considered not just individually but together. Readers willing to put in the effort will find much to ponder and much from which to profit.

Jeremy Walker, Pastor of Maidenbower Baptist Church in Crawley, England

Details:

Print Length: 260 pages
Text-to-Speech: Enabled [Kindle]

Aug. 18-28, 2015 “Baptist Symbolics” [IRBS class] feat. James Renihan in Escondido, CA

Symbolics-Flyer-2015

[source: The Institute of Reformed Baptist Studies]

Baptist Symbolics? Here is the description of the class from the 2013 class notice:

Baptist Symbolics Header 1689Baptist Symbolics is a study of the importance of confessions of faith in Baptist life. It begins with some historical material, considers various views of confessional subscription, and then focuses on the First London Confession of 1644/46 and the Second London Confession of 1677/89. We will expound both of these Confessions in detail.