Saturday, April 16, 2005

I am not a Baptist

I am Broadly Baptistic.

What's the difference? Well, to keep it simple, it means that while my beliefs run generally in the same direction as those of Baptists, they are not lockstep with those beliefs.

For example: Communion. Baptist beliefs hold to a pretty strict symbolic view. The elements (bread and juice) are symbols, and they serve as a reminder of what Jesus did. I can affirm that easily. However Paul uses the language of participation in 1 Co. 10 relation to partaking of the elements, as though the elements carried a reality behind them. I can go for that, since, IMO, symbols represent something real. In this case they do anyway, or else we are remembering a mere principle or concept.

Now Mennonite Brethren also hold to a symbolic view, but the confession of faith we follow uses biblical language, and hence allows for the idea of participation, if not explicitly affirming it.

That makes me Baptistic, not Baptist. Kinda like how doing regular exercise and stuff make me athletic, not an athlete.

1 comment:

eric strauss said...

Hi. I'm no christian but I find faith fascinating and I find intelligent christians particularly interesting. I, of course, respect real christianity for it's moral fortitude, but can't help but wonder why it is soo prone to being coopted by idiots and turned to evil ends. I love the question below your profile--- I'd say, um... no. It makes you just dynamic. Dynamic implies the abscenece of stasis. The fact that stasis never occurs is not itself, static, it just is. Or maybe not, I'm not sure.


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