New (Free) eBook: “The Lord’s Day” by Sam Waldron

The Lord’s Day
Its Presuppositions, Proofs, Precedents, and Practice

by Sam Waldron

Chapel Library: FREE | Kindle: $0.99

Description:

Dr. Sam Waldron

The Lord’s Day is a thoroughly up-to-date consideration of the Fourth Commandment and its ramifications for modern Christianity. Its four sections include the Presuppositions that influence our thinking; Proofs at creation, by Moses, and in the New Testament; Precedents in the Apostolic Fathers and John Calvin; and finally its Practice. While precise and careful, the author avoids extremes and makes the nuances and complexities of the theological issues clear for most Christians.

Pages: 138


[HT: Scott Brown]

“The Barren Fig Tree: The Doom & Downfall of the Fruitless Professor” by John Bunyan [Free eBook Friday]

Monergism:

IN EPUB, .MOBI AND .PDF FORMATSbarren

This solemn, searching, awful treatise, was published by Bunyan in 1682; but does not appear to have been reprinted until a very few months after his decease, which so unexpectedly took place in 1688. Although we have sought with all possible diligence, no copy of the first edition has been discovered; we have made use of a fine copy of the second edition, in possession of that thorough Bunyanite, my kind friend, R. B. Sherring, of Bristol. The third edition, 1692, is in the British Museum. Added to these posthumous publications appeared, for the first time, ‘An Exhortation to Peace and Unity,’ which will be found at the end of our second volume. In the advertisement to that treatise are stated, at some length, my reasons for concluding that it was not written by Bunyan, although inserted in all the editions of his collected works. That opinion is now more fully confirmed, by the discovery of Bunyan’s own list of his works, published just before his death, in 1688, and in which that exhortation is not inserted. I was also much pleased to find that the same conclusion was arrived at by that highly intelligent Baptist minister, Mr. Robert Robinson.

His reasons are given at some length, concluding with, ‘it is evident that Bunyan never wrote this piece.’ Why it was, after Bunyan’s death, published with his ‘Barren Fig-tree,’ is one of those hidden mysteries of darkness and of wickedness that I cannot discover. The beautiful parable from which Bunyan selected his text, represents an enclosed ground, in which, among others, a fig-tree had been planted. It was not an enclosure similar to some of the vineyards of France or Germany, exclusively devoted to the growth of the vine, but a garden in which fruits were cultivated, such as grapes, figs, or pomegranates. It was in such a vineyard, thus retired from the world, that Nathaniel poured out his heart in prayer, when our Lord in spirit witnessed, unseen, these devotional exercises, and soon afterwards rewarded him with open approbation (John 1:48). In these secluded pleasant spots the Easterns spend much of their time, under their own vines or fig-trees, sheltered from the world and from the oppressive heat of the sun–a fit emblem of a church of Christ. In this vineyard stood a fig-tree–by nature remarkable for fruitfulness–but it is barren. No inquiry is made as to how it came there, but the order is given, ‘Cut it down.’ The dresser of the garden intercedes, and means are tried to make it fruitful, but in vain. At last it is cut down as a cumber-ground and burnt. This vineyard or garden represents a gospel church; the fig-tree a member– a barren, fruitless professor. ‘It matters not how he got there,’ if he bears no fruit he must be cut down and away to the fire.

To illustrate so awful a subject this treatise was written, and it is intensely solemn. God, whose omniscience penetrates through every disguise, himself examines every tree in the garden, yea, every bough. Wooden and earthy professor, your detection is sure; appearances that deceive the world and the church cannot deceive God. ‘He will be with thee in thy bed fruits–thy midnight fruits–thy closet fruits– thy family fruits–they conversation fruits.’ Professor, solemnly examine yourself; ‘in proportion to your fruitfulness will be your blessedness.’ ‘Naked and open are all things to his eye.’ Can it be imagined that those ‘that paint themselves did ever repent of their pride?’ ‘How seemingly self-denying are some of these creeping things.’ ‘Is there no place will serve to fit those for hell but the church, the vineyard of God?’ ‘It is not the place where the worker of iniquity can hide himself or his sins from God.’ May such be detected before they go hence to the fire. While there is a disposition to seek grace all are invited to come; but when salvation by Christ is abandoned, there is no other refuge, although sought with tears. Reader, may the deeply impressive language of Bunyan sink profoundly into our hearts. We need no splendid angel nor hideous demon to reveal to us the realities of the world to come. ‘If we hear not Moses and the prophets,’ as set forth by Bunyan in this treatise, ‘neither should we be persuaded though one rose from the dead’ to declare these solemn truths (Luke 16:31).

“Spurgeon’s Prayers Personalized” by C. H. Spurgeon [Free eBook Friday]

Spurgeon Prayer Book

Spurgeon’s Prayers Personalized

by C. H. Spurgeon

[ Download in ePub, .mobi, pdf & docx formats ]

Description:

C. H. Spurgeon
C. H. Spurgeon

Content for this eBook excerpted from the following books :C.H. Spurgeon’s Prayers, The Pastor in Prayer and Behold the Throne of Grace. Many of these prayers of Spurgeon have been “personalized” by taking the Elizabethan language out and replacing it with contemporary language such as: “Thee” and “thou” replaced with “you”, and “taketh” replaced with take or taken.

References like “London” have been replace with “city”. Sometimes sentences have been omitted because they don’t have any meaning for today, this is indicated by showing a series of periods (…) .

264 pages

Table of Contents and more details.

“Revival Year Sermons” by C. H. Spurgeon [Free eBook Friday]

revival sermons Spurgeon Book

Revival Year Sermons (Expanded Edition)

By C. H. Spurgeon

[ePub, .mobi.pdf Formats]

Description:

C. H. Spurgeon
C. H. Spurgeon

Preached in the Surrey Gardens Music Hall 1859. According to Spurgeon, that year was perhaps the greatest and most fruitful in his long ministry. At the end of 1859 He wrote, “The times of refreshing from the presence of the Lord have at last dawned upon our land’.  In that time he preached to a congregation of approximately 8,000 people in addition to addressing, almost daily, vast multitudes in different places. The 10 sermons in this eBook are all carfully selected from 1859 and show the energetic, clear and, fervent proclamation of the gospel which made Spurgeon’s preaching so powerfully used by God.

Table of Contents:

  1. The Story of God’s Mighty Acts – Psalm 44:1.
  2. The Blood of the Everlasting Covenant – Hebrews 13:20
  3. The Necessity of the Spirit’s Work – Ezekiel, 36:27
  4. Predestination and Calling – Romans 8:30
  5. The Minister’s Farewell – Acts 20:26-27
  6. Bonus Revival Year Sermons 1859
  7. Love – 1 John 4:19
  8. Free Grace – Ezekiel 36:32
  9. Jacob and Esau – Romans 9:15
  10. Distinguishing Grace – 1 Corinthians 4:7
  11. The Fainting Warrior – Romans 7:24, 25

45 pages

“Biblical Elders & Deacons” by Nehemiah Coxe [Free eBook Friday]

Coxe Elders Deacons Book

Biblical Elders and Deacons
by Nehemiah Coxe D. 1688

[Download in .ePub .mobi & .pdf formats]

Chapel Library:

Christ’s will as revealed in Scripture is the pattern for the church, and Nehemiah Coxe unfolds aspects of that pattern that relate to church leadership. “The edification and beauty of the Church is much concerned in her order, not such an order as superstition will dictate, or litigious nicety contend for, but such as sets her in a conformity with Christ’s will; and particularly the filling up of the offices which He has appointed, with persons duly qualified for the administration of them, and the regular acting both of officers and members in their respective positions.”

Pages: 32.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

I. Exposition

II. Appointment of Deacons

III. Appointment of Elders

IV. A Pastor’s Duty toward His People

V. The People’s Duty toward Their Pastors

VI. Conclusion

Biography

“Comfort for Christians” by A. W. Pink [Free eBook Friday]

comfort pink

Comfort for Christians

by A. W. Pink

[Download in ePub and Mobi (Kindle) formats]

Monergism.com:

A W PinkThe work unto which the servant of Christ is called is many-sided. Not only is he to preach the Gospel to the unsaved, to feed God’s people with knowledge and understanding (Jer 3:15), and to take up the stumbling stone out of their way (Isa 57:14), but he is also charged to “cry aloud, spare not, lift up your voice like a trumpet, and show My people their transgression” (Isa 58:1 and cf. 1 Tim 4:2). While another important part of his commission is stated in, “Comfort, comfort My people, says your God.” (Isa 40:1).

What an honorable title, “My people!” What an assuring relationship: “your God!” What a pleasant task: “comfort My people!” A threefold reason may be suggested for the duplicating of the charge. First, because sometimes the souls of believers refuse to be comforted (Psalm 77:2), and the consolation needs to be repeated. Second, to press this duty the more emphatically upon the preacher’s heart, that he need not be sparing in administering cheer. Third, to assure us how heartily desirous God himself is that His people should be of full of joy (Phil 4:4).

God has a “people,” the objects of His special favor: a company whom He has taken into such intimate relationship unto Himself that He calls them “My people.” Often they are disconsolate because of their natural corruptions, the temptations of Satan, the cruel treatment of the world, the low state of Christ’s cause upon earth. The “God of all comfort” (2 Cor 1:3) is very tender towards them, and it is His revealed will that His servants should bind up the broken-hearted and pour the balm of Gilead into their wounds. What cause have we to exclaim “Who is a God like unto You!” (Micah 7:18), who has provided for the comfort of those who were rebels against His government and transgressors of His Law.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

  1. No Condemnation
  2. The Christian’s Assurance
  3. Sufferings Compensated
  4. The Great Giver
  5. The Divine Rememberer
  6. Tried by Fire
  7. Divine Chastisement
  8. God’s Inheritance
  9. God Securing His Inheritance
  10. Mourning
  11. Hungering
  12. Heart Purity
  13. The Beatitudes and Christ
  14. Affliction and Glory
  15. Contentment
  16. Precious Death

 


I said it on our last Dunker Bunker and I’ll say it again:

Real Men Read Pink (3)

“The Seven Sayings of the Savior on the Cross” by A. W. Pink [Free eBook Friday]

 

Pink Cross Saying

A Catechism for Boys and Girls
by A. W. Pink

[Download in .ePub .mobi & .pdf formats]

Monergism.com:

The Seven Sayings of the Saviour on the Cross, Dr. Pink illustrates clearly the lessons that emerge out of the seven utterances of Christ on the cross, filling the reader with the glory of the redemptive message. Pink uses one chapter, for each of the seven things Jesus said while dying: the word of Forgiveness (Luke 23:34), the word of Salvation (Luke 23:42-43), the word of Affection (John 19:25-27), the word of Anguish (Matthew 27:46), the word of Suffering (John 19:28), the word of Victory (John 19:30) and the word of Contentment (Luke 23:46). A W PinkEach of the seven chapters is then broken down into seven profound insights on what Jesus said, why he said it, and the far reaching implications for us who hear it.

Dr. Arthur W. Pink (1886-1952) served as a pastor for churches in Colorado, California, Kentucky, and South Carolina. His ministry brought him throughout the United States, Australia, and Great Britain.

Pages: 94.

Download (PDF, 468KB)

“Spiritual Melody, Containing Near 300 Sacred Hymns…” by Benjamin Keach [Free eBook Friday]

The full title of this book gives the description as well:

Benjamin Keach
Benjamin Keach

Spiritual melody, containing near three hundred sacred hymns. By Benjamin Keach, author of Trhopolgia, pastor of the Church of Christ meeting on Horsly-down, Southwark

Print souce: Keach, Benjamin, 1640-1704. London: printed for John Hancock, in Castle-Alley, near the Royal-Exchange in Cornhill, 1691.

View it for free.


(You may also get it in print for over $40!)

 

Free PDF/MOBI/EPUB: “A Baptist Catechism: For Personal & Family Devotion” [including the 1689, Catechism, Church Covenant + more]

This resource is now available as a free eBook:

baptist catechism

Kindle [modi] | iPad [epub] | PDF | Print: $11.25£7.86

Description:

Pastor JD Hall & Family
Pastor JD Hall & Family

This material has been collected specifically for use among Reformation Montana churches, but it has been made available for all Baptists of life-faith.

Includes:

  • Declaration of Reformation [by JD Hall]
  • London Baptist Confession of Faith [(1689) Slight Revisions by Charles Spurgeon]
  • Baptist Catechism [as presented by the Charleston Association, 1813]
  • Baptist Church Covenant [ an abridged version taken from “A Declaration of Faith” by J. Newton Brown (1853)]
  • A Modern Day Downgrade [by JD Hall] – a short treatise on why catechism is necessary for Reformation in our modern times.

Endorsements:

JD Hall & James White
JD Hall & James White

“Western culture today seeks to cut itself free from burdensome things like truth, consistency, and commitment. The Baptist Catechism reminds us that there are truths worth living for, and dying for, that give life transcendent meaning and purpose.”

Dr. James White, Director of Alpha and Omega Ministries, host of The Dividing Line and 2013 RefMT Conference Speaker

ken300
Ken Fryer

“Although this catechism is intended for Baptists of all varieties, as a Southern Baptist I find my Convention in the paradoxical position of affirming biblical inerrancy while many of its churches are doctrinally deficient. To assist the church in extricating herself from this less than God-honoring predicament, I highly recommend Pastor J.D. Hall’s book A Baptist Catechism for Personal and Family Devotion. Along with an open Bible, it will be a refreshment to your soul and serve as a vehicle to foster restoration in our churches.”

Ken Fryer 2nd Vice President of the Louisiana Baptist Convention, serving at Heritage Baptist Church in Shreveport, Louisiana

Free PDF/MOBI/EPUB | $/£0.99 Kindle: “An Essay on the Kingdom of Christ” by Abraham Booth

An announcement from C.Jay Engel and Brandon Adams, over at ReformedLibertarian.com:

We are happy to announce that Abraham Booth’s 18th century “Essay on the Kingdom of Christ” is now available on Amazon.com as an ebook [ $0.99 | £0.99 ] or here in PDF format (FREE and now .modi and .ePub format ). We have edited and reformatted the book for ebook publication. This essay has been quite influential in the development of our own thoughts regarding the nature of the kingdom of heaven, as distinct and set apart from the earthy and temporal kingdoms of this world. We hope you get as much from it as we did.

Essay on the Kingdom of Christ Booth

An Essay on the Kingdom of Christ [Kindle Edition]
by Abraham Booth

$0.99 | £0.99 ]

Description:

boothAbraham Booth (1734-1806) was a confessional particular baptist pastor in England. He wrote “An Essay on the Kingdom of Christ” in 1783 as a commentary on the Church of England. His essay builds upon an inherited foundation of baptist covenant theology known today as 1689 Federalism.

In Booth’s essay, the glory of the kingdom of Christ shines brightly as he distinguishes it from every kingdom on earth, including the “Israelitish Theocracy.” His was a day in which ideas mattered, and his ideas, shared by others, as representative of a long covenantal tradition, had significant consequences in America, and eventually throughout the world. Today is still a day in which ideas matter, because ideas always matter. Our hope is that Booth’s essay will aid you in thinking upon Christ and his kingdom as you sojourn on this earth.

Details:

Print Length: 78 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Publisher: Reformed Libertarian (April 8, 2015)
Text-to-Speech: Enabled
Lending: Enabled


You may read the Foreword here, or in the PDF below along with the entire essay:

Download (PDF, 639KB)

FREE Audiobooks by & about Particular Baptists [Narrated by Tom Sullivan]

Tom Sullivan has been narrating audiobooks from 1985 to the present. Within the past year he has been posting these to PuritanAudioBooks.net, where you may download them for free.

Puritan Reformed AudiobooksWithin the recent weeks he has put out many audiobooks by and about Particular Baptists that come from books and sermons of old. More are being made but here’s a roundup of what is currently out:

AUDIOBOOKS:

William Kiffin (1616–1701) 

William Kiffin
William Kiffin

Autobiography of William Kiffin (1616–1701) Chapters 1-3

Kiffin’s influence was very great. Macaulay says, “Great as was the authority of Bunyan with the Baptists, William Kiffin’s was greater still.” He had talents of the highest order; his education was respectable; his sagacity was uncommon; his manners were polished; his piety was known everywhere; and for half a century he was the first man in the Baptist denomination. – Baptist Encyclopedia

MP3:

Chapters 4-6

MP3:

Chapter 7-8

MP3:


John Bunyan (1620-1680)

John Bunyan
John Bunyan

The Groans of a Lost Soul

A  F E W Sighs From Hell,
or

The Groans of The Damned Soul or An exposition of those words
in the Sixteenth of Luke, Concerning the Rich Man and the Beggar wherein is discovered the lamentable state of the damned;
their cries, their desires in their distresses, with the determination of God upon them.

A good warning word to sinners, both old and young, to take into consideration betimes, and to seek, by faith in Jesus Christ, to avoid, lest they come into the same Place of Torment.

Also, a brief discourse touching the profitableness of the Scriptures for our instruction in the way of righteousness, according to the tendency of the parable.

SermonAudio [MP3]:

The Barren Fig Tree

Well, now the ax begins to be heaved higher. For now, indeed, God is ready to smite the sinner; yet before He will strike the stroke, He will try one way more at last, and if that misseth, down goes the fig tree. Now this last way is to tug and strive with this professor by the Spirit. Wherefore the Spirit of the Lord is now come to him, but not always to strive with man. Yet awhile He will strive with him; He will awaken, He will convince, He will call to remembrance former sins, former judgments, the breach of former vows and promises, the misspending of former days – He will also present persuasive arguments, encouraging promises, dreadful judgments, the shortness of time to repent in, and that there is hope if He come. Further, He will show him the certainty of death, and of the judgment to come; yea, He will pull and strive with this sinner.

MP3 [alt: SermonAudio]:

The Heavenly Footman

Or, A Description of the Man That Gets to Heaven, How to Run

SermonAudio [MP3]:


John Piggott (1717)

Hercules CollinsFuneral Sermon Hercules Collins 1702

From Founders. org: Collins served from 1677 until his death in 1702 as the third pastor of London’s oldest Baptist church which was then the meeting in the Wapping area of London.

MP3:

petty franceThe Funeral Sermon of William Collins 1702

William Collins was [editors note: most likely] one of the two authors of the London Baptist Confession of Faith, the other being Nehemiah Coxe.

MP3:


Benjamin Wallin (1711-1782)

The-Redeemers-charge-against-his-declining-churches--exemplified-in-the-case-of-the-church-of-Ephesus-The Redeemer’s Charge Against Declining Churches 1

From Hymnary.org: Wallin, Benjamin, son of Edward Wallin, pastor of the Baptist Church, Maze Pond, Southwark, was born in London in 1711. He received a good education under the care of the Rev. John Needham, of Hitchin (father of the hymnwriter of that name, and was for a time engaged in business. But in 1740 he responded to an earnest request to become pastor of the church over which his father had presided, and this position he retained until his death on Feb. 19, 1782. Mr. B. Wallin published nearly forty sermons, charges, and other small religious books and pamphlets.

MP3:

The Redeemer’s Charge Against Declining Churches 2

MP3:

The Redeemer’s Charge Against Declining Churches 3

MP3:


Benjamin Beddome (23 January 1717 – 23 September 1795)

Benjamin Beddome
Benjamin Beddome

Final Rejection of the Wicked

From the Benjamin Beddome Blog: Benjamin beddome (1717-1795) is a largely forgotten 18th century English Baptist preacher, remembered today only as a minor hymnwriter. For over half a century he served as pastor of the Baptist Church Meeting at Bourton-on-the-Water, Gloucestershire. He is worth more than a passing glance.

MP3:


Abraham Booth (1734–1806)

Abraham Booth
Abraham Booth

His Ordination and Confession

FORASMUCH therefore as we find in the sacred writings, that
the separating those who were called by GOD to office in the
church devolved upon the ministers, and that it .was done by prayer and imposition of hands; and as it does not appear that
the practice of laying on of hands was confined to the conferring the peculiar gifts of the Holy Ghost; and we have no intimation of its being laid aside; we are now come, at the desire of this church, to separate Mr. Abraham Booth to the pastoral office in this community, according to the primitive manner, by prayer and imposition of hands. In order to which, give me leave for the satisfaction of this assembly to make the few following
requests.

MP3:


 

Samuel Eyles Pierce (1746-1829)

Samuel Pierce
Samuel Pierce

Treatise on Growth in Grace

The Rev. Samuel Eyles Pierce (Upottery, Devonshire, England, 23 June 1746 – Clapham, Surrey, England 10 May 1829) was an English preacher, theologian, and Calvinist divine. A Dissenter from the Honiton area, Pierce was an evangelical church minister aligned with Calvinist Baptist theology. He wrote more than fifty books and many sermons.

MP3:

Treatise on Growth in Grace 2

MP3:


John Warburton (1776–1857)

John Warburton
John Warburton

The Mercies of A Covenant God

The Conversion Story of John Warburton

MP3:


John L. Dagg (1794–1884)

John Dagg
John Dagg

Portions from Manual of Theology

From the Founders Web Site: The voluminous amount of material, the persuasiveness of his arguments, and the relevance of his insights show these works to be extraordinary for a man under normally healthy circumstances. However, if one realizes that Dagg was virtually blind, mute and lame at the time of his greatest productivity the accomplishment exceeds comprehension.

The Depravity of Man

MP3:

Human Inability

MP3:


John Charles Philpot  (1802-1869)

An Evaluation of the Writings of John Bunyan

MP3:


Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892)

Charles Spurgeon
Charles Spurgeon

The Treasury of David

This work was first published in weekly installments over a twenty-year span in the London Metropolitan Tabernacle’s periodical, The Sword and the Trowel.

Completed sections were released volume by volume, until the seventh and final volume was released in 1885. Within a decade more than 120,000 sets had been sold. The Treasury of David is a superb literary achievement. Eric Hayden, pastor of the Metropolitan Tabernacle a century after Spurgeon’s ministry began there, calls this work “Spurgeon’s magnum opus.” Spurgeon’s wife said that if Spurgeon had never written any other work, this would have been a permanent literary memorial.

Other Spurgeon audiobooks


A. W. Pink (1886-1952)

A. W. Pink
A. W. Pink

The Total Depravity of Man

Other Pink audiobooks

 

Get Desiring God’s new edition of Bunyan’s “The Pilgrim’s Progress” FREE [PDF, EPUB, MOBI]

Pilgrims Progress New Ed

Desiring God:

On November 28, 1628, in a quiet cottage nestled within the English parish of Elstow, during one of the most tumultuous times in the country’s history, John Bunyan was born.

 

The place of Bunyan’s birth in Elstow was only a mile from the busy town of Bedford, where years later Bunyan would be imprisoned for over a decade for preaching the gospel. Like his father, Bunyan learned the simple trade of a tinker — a mender of pots and kettles — and came to be known as the “tinker turned preacher” when he began lay preaching in his late twenties. Bunyan’s skill and passion drew hundreds of listeners. Theologian John Owen, a contemporary of Bunyan, when asked by King Charles why he went to hear such an uneducated man preach, replied, “I would willingly exchange my learning for the tinker’s power of touching men’s hearts.”

 

But Bunyan’s legacy is not so much in his preaching, but his writing. During his imprisonment in the Bedford jail, Bunyan wrote several books, including most popularly, The Pilgrim’s Progress, which has sold more copies in the English language than any book besides the Bible. Today, the book still remains both an incomparable source of spiritual education and a classic in English literature.

Releasing a New Edition

For this reason, on Bunyan’s birthday, Desiring God is excited to release a new edition of The Pilgrim’s Progress, free of charge in three digital formats (PDF, EPUB, MOBI).

 

This new edition is the original first part of Bunyan’s classic, unabridged and redesigned in beautiful typesetting for modern readability. This edition also features a foreword by Leland Ryken, who kindly offered counsel to us since the beginning of this project, and a short biography of Bunyan’s life by John Piper. The preface to this edition was written by John Newton in 1776 to introduce an old version of the book that included his annotations. This preface was discovered by Tony Reinke, biographer of Newton, and is included now in print for the first time in over a century.

Table of Contents

  • Foreword by Leland Ryken
  • To Live Upon God Who Is Invisible: The Life of John Bunyan by John Piper
  • Preface by John Newton (1776)
  • The Pilgrim’s Progress

Download:

  • Download the PDF
  • Download the EPUB formatted for readers like the Nook, Sony Reader, and Apple iBooks (iPad, iPhone, iPod).
  • Download the MOBI formatted for Kindle. (You may be required to download the MOBI file to a computer before sending it to your Kindle device.)

In addition to the free ebook formats, we are releasing a new paperback version available on Amazon at minimum cost. At just over 250 pages, this paperback is a stout read and makes for a great gift idea this Christmas season, especially in the midst of new and exciting publications.

Preview PDF:

Download (PDF, 849KB)

‘The Parable of the Wheat & Tares Opened’ by Benjamin Keach [Free eBook Friday]

Wheat Tares

Benjamin Keach
Benjamin Keach

Brandon Adams:

The Parable of the Wheat and the Tares was a series of sermons published by Benjamin Keach in 1701. Keach was a particular baptist. This parable was the central text in the debate over religious liberty, or liberty of conscience. We’re posting it here because an edited text version does not exist online. Here is a PDF version. A bit about Keach…

Read [2 hour readout]

 

“A Sober Discourse on the Right to Church-Communion” by William Kiffin [Free E-book Friday]

Reformed Baptista points to a great book amid Internet discussion and gives some helpful comments as well:

“[W]hile the famous Baptist John Bunyan allowed open communion, most of the signers of the 1689 did not. Was this due to hard-headed stubbornness, a reaction against the critiques by Presbyterians? Possibly, but how then does that reconcile with the words of the introduction to the 1689, which calls Presbyterian brethren? And deigns to show love in explaining their differences?

 

William Kiffin
William Kiffin

William Kiffin, one of the signers of the 1689, wrote “A Sober Discourse on the Right to Church-Communion” [Amazon], addressing the very reasons why he practiced “closed communion” (restricting the Lord’s Supper to only those professors who had been baptized by immersion). Why did he restrict the table? Because of Scripture:

 

OBJECTION #10:  This is a dividing principle, and ’tis very censorious to judge none fit for communion in a Church, but such as are baptized thereby, unchristianing all other persons that are of another mind.

 

ANSWER: This is no other principle but what Scripture doth everywhere justify, as hath been largely proved before. And this objection rather chargeable on the contrary opinion, as being that which divides the ordinance from its proper use and by putting it out of its place, where God in his Word hath set it. There being no division by principle, but what is made by the ignorance of the persons that oppose it about the rule and order by which Christians ought to walk; or by their wilful neglect of that which is required by the Lord, of those that desire communion with the Church. For if the Lord of the family prescribe an order by which it should be governed, can it be reasonable that this rule should be broken for the sake of the servant’s ignorance or wilfulness? We censure none so rigidly as to take upon us to unchristian or unchurch them; all that we do (in discharge of our duty to God, and Faithfulness in our places) to labour to keep the Lord’s Ordinances in that purity and Order the Sacred Records testify they were left in, and in a spirit of Love and Meekness to contend earnestly for the Faith once delivered to the Saints; which we conceive to be a duty enjoined upon all Christians, &c.

 

Scripture is to regulate the Church’s practice. The elements of worship (which would include the ordinances of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper) are to be administered the way Scripture proscribes. If one sees that proper baptism is immersion according to the Scriptures, and that Christians who are baptized should be the ones to receive the Lord’s Supper (again, according to the Scriptures), then to allow those who are not baptized to the table (for sprinkling nor pouring is considered baptism) would be inconsistent with one’s view of Scripture. If you are not going to allow everyone to the table, then lines are to be drawn somewhere. This should be a reminder to always return to “WDSS?” or, “What Does Scripture Say”? Emotional pleas and intelligent rhetoric may be appealing, but if they are not rooted firmly and clearly in the Word then they must not be compelling.

 

There is no statement in the 1689 regarding whether baptized believers alone should take the Lord’s Supper. Since not all were in agreement on the issue, the Confession stated that “worthy receivers” partook of the elements, leaving the definition of worthy to individual churches. Obviously there is still disagreement today. However, if you respect Baptists despite disagreeing with them, then you should be able to respect those who decide to fence the table.

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