When you first visit a Primitive Baptist Church
you'll notice a simple worship service consisting of hymns, prayer and preaching, as close to the pattern established 2000 years ago as possible. The absence of musical instruments, choirs, Sunday schools and other manmade inventions is in keeping with the teachings of the New Testament. The Lord's Church is under the authority of her husband and head, Jesus Christ and is submissive to Him in all things. Therefore, the church should not reflect the world, but rather be a city set upon a hill. (Eph. 5:23-25; Matthew 5:14)
The words Primitive Baptist are adjectives describing the origin and practice of the New Testament Church. The word PRIMITIVE means "First or Original; and pertaining to origin, has not changed much in time." Historians use this term to describe the first Churches of the New Testament era. The term Primitive Baptist has been traced back to 63 AD and a church found in Olchon, Wales. Another name given to the Primitive Churches in the 4th Century was "Ana-Baptist." Ana-Baptists were known throughout the dark ages by many names, such as Donatists, Paulicans, Waldenses and Lollards. After the Protestant Reformation, the prefix Ana was dropped and the name Baptist was retained. Baptist means one who baptizes by immersion. In the United States all Baptists were pretty much of the same beliefs until about 1800 when a major division began to take place in the Baptist family. Those who believed in a "General Atonement" and that human efforts are necessary for the "dead" sinner to obtain eternal life, departed the Primitive Faith.
After 1832, those Baptist Churches remaining faithful to the doctrines of Grace were called Old School, Old Line or Primitive Baptists, denoting their desire to preserve the biblical identity of the New Testament Church.
A brief overview of Primitive Baptist beliefs, the doctrine of Grace and church practice.
The Church was established by Christ to be a home (on earth) away from home (heaven) for God's children. It is a refuge or sanctuary where one may receive spiritual comfort, rest, peace and instruction in righteousness.
The Scriptures are the inspired, infallible words of God, without error or contradiction, preserved by God, and are profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction and instruction in righteousness. Their purpose is to make His children wise unto salvation by informing and educating them about eternal life through the finished work of Jesus Christ. We prefer the 1611 Authorized King James translation, believing it to be the inspired and protected word of God. (1 Cor. 15:1-4; 2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Peter 1 :20-21)
The Purpose of the Gospel was never to bring eternal life to anyone. It means nothing to the dead sinner, but is good news and glad tidings to the born again child of God. Therefore, it is preached to feed the souls of His children; to comfort, edify and instruct them. A child of God who feels himself poor and needy and unworthy of God's mercy and grace, can hear no greater message than Jesus paid the sin debt, saved him from his sins and keeps him by the power of God. (Isaiah 40: 1, 9; 52:7; John 5:39;1 Cor. 2:9-14; Eph. 2:1-9; 2 Tim. 1:7-11; Acts 20:28; 1 Peter 1 :2-5; 5: 1-3)
The Key Difference Between Primitive Baptists
and other religions may be summarized by a look at the subject of cause and effect. What others say is the cause of salvation, such as belief, faith, repentance, baptism or other acts by an individual, Primitive Baptists believe are the effects (evidence) of spiritual life and can only be performed sincerely by those already possessing eternal life.
Salvation is Totally by the Sovereign Grace of God - briefly explained as follows:
The Fall of Man Resulting in Depravity. When Adam transgressed God's commandment, he and the human race (Adam's posterity) fell under the law of sin and death. Adam's transgression brought sin and death to all mankind. No one is able to recover himself from this fallen condition by his own will or ability. All men are sinners by nature and without God's Grace and Mercy will remain under the penalty and condemnation of sin. (Genesis 2: 17; Romans 3:10-23; 5:12; Psalms 14:1-3; 51:5; 58:3)
Unconditional Election & Predestination. God, according to His own purpose and will, chose an innumerable people in Christ, out of every kindred and tongue and people and nation, before the world began and predestinated them unto the adoption of children to be conformed to the image of Jesus Christ, granting their eternal inheritance in heaven. (John 17:1-3; Eph. 1:4-11; 1Peter 1:1-5;
Rom. 8:29-30; Rev. 5:9-10)
Redemption: Christ's Work for the Elect. The word redeem declares a price to be paid and prior ownership of that which is to be redeemed. The price of eternal redemption (Hebrews 9:12) is the blood of Christ. Christ died for all that the Father chose in Him before the world began; ALL that the Father has given to Him; and NOT for ALL MANKIND in general. All whom Christ died for SHALL live in heaven and immortal glory. God has reconciled them unto Himself in Christ.
(John 6:37-39; 8:42-47; 17:9; Rom. 5:8 19; 1 Cor. 1 :26-21; 11 Cor. 5: 17-21; Heb. 9:24-26;
1 Peter 1 :2-5 with 18-21)
Regeneration, New Birth, Born Again.
These various terms define what happens when God quickens His children into eternal life. This is done by the life-giving voice of Christ and is always effectual and irresistible on the part of the individual. This new life is accomplished separate and apart from the preaching of the gospel and without the help of man. (John 3:6-8; 5:25; 6:37; Rom. 8:30; Eph. 2: I; 2 Tim. 1 :9)
Preservation or Eternal Security.
The comforting aspect of this doctrine of salvation by grace is that ALL whom Christ died for shall be saved eternally without the loss of one. They shall never perish, and can never be separated from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus. They are preserved by His blood and kept by His power. (John 6:37-39; 10:27-30; Rom. 8:28-39; I Peter 1:1-5; Heb. 10:14)
Brief Comments About our Church Practices
Musical Instruments. Our worship service is patterned after the New Testament example and authority and consists of congregational singing, prayer and preaching. Musical instruments are not used in the services as there is no New Testament command or example for them. We believe in singing and making melody in our heart to the Lord. (Ephesians 5: 19; Colossians 3: 16)
Sunday School - Teaching. Sunday Schools have no New Testament authority. They are a recent invention begun in the 18th century in England, and then only to teach reading, writing and arithmetic to under-privileged children. Primitive Baptists do believe in teaching children. The Bible instructs parents to teach their children at home, and the Minister to teach them in the assembly. (Eph. 6:4; 2 Tim 2:1-2)
Tithing or Financial Support.
Tithing was an Old Testament law fulfilled in Christ. We believe in the biblical example of giving by laying aside the first day of the week as God has prospered, and as one purposes in his heart, cheerfully supporting the ministry of the church. (I Cor. 16:2; 2 Cor. 9:7; Acts 20:35)
Rejecting Sin - Living Godly Lives.
Now having knowledge of our eternal salvation, we believe God's children should deny ungodliness and worldly lusts and live soberly, righteously and godly in this present world. We should live unto Him who died for us and called us out of darkness into His marvelous light. (Titus 2:12; 2 Cor. 5:14-15; 1 Peter 2:9;
Rom. 6: 1-2)
The Primitive Baptist Church has an identity found in the New Testament; our goal is to follow that example and pattern, worshipping God in spirit and in truth, believing and observing the doctrine and commandments of Jesus Christ. We believe doing so will bring peace and understanding, joy unspeakable and full of glory, to the child of God who walks in His ways. By our obedience, we glorify and honor God by His Son Jesus Christ in the Church throughout all ages. (John 4:23; Matt. 15:7-9; John 14:15-18; Philippians 4:7; 1 Peter 1:8; Eph.3:21)
Truth will withstand the most intense scrutiny and examination. When separated from the traditions and ego-driven doctrines of men, the true Gospel of Christ shines clear. We encourage you to search the scriptures, to see whether these things be so. Should you desire to serve the true and living God, please visit with us at the Roswell Primitive Baptist Church. (Acts 17:11)