By Larry Ray Hafley
“The Kind of Baptist I Am”
Our heading is the title of a regular series, which is written by L. D. Foreman and appears monthly in The Baptist World magazine. The section is devoted to various and sundry doctrines and practices of Missionary Baptists. After reviewing a certain aspect of Baptist teaching and tradition and expressing his Baptist views, Editor Foreman invariably with the words, “Thats the kind of Baptist I am.”
There are, it may be, “gods many, and lords many” as Paul said, but now we see there are Methodists many, Presbyterians a-plenty, Lutherans a-lot, and Baptists a-bunch. Like the rest of the above, when Mr. Foreman writes of his “kind” he speaks of a species unknown to the New Testament order. We frequently read of “Christians,” “disciples,” and “children of God,” but never of Baptists, whether of Mr. Foremans variety or any other. When one classifies “the kind of Baptist” or any other “ist,” “ite,” or “ian,” he is, he shows he was not raised in a garden sown with the seed of the New Testament. Could any Bible writer author a column entitled, “The Kind Of Baptist I Am?” Whether Northern, Southern, American, or Missionary, choose which direction or title you will, the apostles and prophets were not Baptists, were not known as Baptists, and tried not to persuade anyone else to be more or less than what they were (Acts 20:28, 29). Should we today presume to be or do more or less than what they were and did along this or any other line?
Is This Mr. Foremans Kind?
The Baptists of Mr. Foremans stripe teaches that baptism is not essential to the remission of sins; that it has nothing whatever to do with the salvation of the soul. “Thats the kind of Baptist” Mr. Foreman and his brethren are. Even if there were such a thing as Baptists in the New Testament, Mr. Foreman and his brethren would not be their kin or “kind.”
The Bible says, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved” (Mk. 10: 10). “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38). “Arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord (I Acts 22: 16). “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Gal. 3: 26, 27). “The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us” (I Pet. 3:21).
Is that the “kind of” doctrine Mr. Foreman and his Baptist brethren teach? No, it is not. Is that the kind of thing they tell penitent believers? No, it is not. But it is the New Testament “kind,” and “Thats the kind of Christian I am.”
TRUTH MAGAZINE, XVII: 1, p. 2
November 2, 1972