Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Sandy Creekers

I never thought that I'd see the day that modern Southern Baptists would refer to themselves as a Sandy Creeker or a Calvinist, but here we are. I was already looking for some good source documents on the early Baptist confessions because I have always just taken everyone's word on the content of them (ie. reformed or not). Recently, another blog post has again pressed me to want to read and study the early Baptist confessions. I did a quick web search* of said documents and found something that, quite frankly, surprised me. I had always assumed that the Sandy Creek Baptists would have been Arminian/Pelagian in their soteriology because of what I have always heard from people about them. Anyway, I found a Sandy Creek statement of faith that I would have no problem adopting. Read it here or here.

A couple of questions:
1.) Did Sandy Creek Baptists hold to a reformed soteriology or does their statement of faith speak generally and allow for interpretations that explain away clear meaning.
2.) Does anyone know of a good book for source document confessions and creeds. I have seen a few, but would like some input to any that may not have crossed my desk. If you are Richard Bailey (sorry Richard, I can't believe I put Jason in there at first) or Paul Lamey, please stoop to comment because I value your opinion on good books.

*I don't recommend the internet as a primary means of gathering information, but it was the best I could do given that I am in a hotel with 47 youth choir students. If all you ever read is internet sources, then you'll probably end up misspelling your tatoo.

45 comments:

Richard A. Bailey said...

Adam, a friend of mine had an article published in the Founders Journal several years ago. You can find it here. As I remember the article, it has some problems (stylistically and otherwise), but I think it addresses some of the questions you are thinking about.

As for collections of baptist confessions, check out William Lumpkin's Baptist Confessions of Faith by Judson Press. You are likely familiar with it already, but it is a rather useful collection of primary sources.

Paul Lamey said...

I sent Richard Bailey as my rep so his answer is my answer.

Paul Lamey said...

Although it says nothing about Sandy Creek creeds/confessions, Phillip Schaff's "Creeds of Christendom" is still one of the best arrangements of creeds and confessions going back to the ancient through the 19th Century.

As for Sandy Creek, if you can get your hand on William Cathcart's "The Baptist Encyclopaedia" there might be some good source info tucked in its pages. I can't get my hand on my copy where I am at the moment but someone should check it out. BTW: I have a first edition which I will accept bids for starting at $500.00. Anyone?

Diet Coke Mania said...

I didn't know that you knew Richard Bailey. It seems like I remember him being a Garrett Fellow. Anyway, I'm sure I cannot tell you anything that he couldn't.

As Richard said above, you should take a look at Lumpkin's Baptist Confessions of Faith. It has Principles of Faith of the Sandy Creek Association.

You may also want to look at A Baptist Source Book by Robert A. Baker by Wimpf and Stock Publishers. There is a section on the Sandy Creek Association and Shubal Stearns. There is a covenant assigned to Stearns (1757). You'll have to read it for yourself. However, this book is more of a history so it may not be what you are looking for.

Richard A. Bailey said...

Let's you know that Lamey can't afford quality help, huh? Maybe that's why he's taking bids on Cathcart. Speaking of that doorstop of a voluyme, if Cathcart didn't prove helpful, you'd certainly enjoy chuckling at the florid descriptions of past baptists. Seems that nearly everyone in it was a prince or a model or a warrior of the baptist faith. As Paul could vouch, though, it really is fun. Useful, yes, but entertaining as well.

Anonymous said...

Adam,

Messieurs Lamey and Bailey have already given you good counsel. Lumpkin is must reading for all serious students of Baptist history. Lamey and Bailey remain first rate Baptist historians even though they both have wandered off the SBC reservation a bit. In any event, Torbet's A History of the Baptists is a classic work that will also shed light on your topic.

In having the Sandy Creek / Charleston tradtion conversation I think it is always important to note that Basil Manly Sr. was the moderator of both the Sandy Creek Association and the Charleston Association. Moreover, he authored both confessions of faith. I think this commonality, among other reasons, weakens the argument of those who claim two different origins with two different trajectories.

Any way, happy reading. I hope to see you at TFTG.

Paul Lamey said...

Sound the alarms, "they're off the SBC reservation!!!"

Richard A. Bailey said...

Anonymoose seems a little confused on some things. First, I am not a baptist historian, a Baptist historian, or a historian of baptists. Second, he shows his true colors when Baptist equals SBC. Third, Torbet's history is classic, but as boring as, well, to keep this site clean, all get out. Of course, my guess is Anonymoose knows all of this already.

For some reason, Lamey's response got me thinking about the Go-Go Gophers.

Paul Lamey said...

Richard,

The Go-Go-Gophers are classic! Great theological insight. I guess I would add that I'm not a baptist historian either but it sure would be funny if I was.

I remember when I too thought that SBC=center of the universe, but even I was amazed to find a lot of Christians off the "reservation." Makes one wonder, how did the great comission get along without it for so many years.

Richard A. Bailey said...

I should add, though, Paul. While not a baptist historian, I do play one on TV from time to time.

Paul Lamey said...

Not me man, I'm a Ninja!

Richard A. Bailey said...

I can see that

Antique Religion said...

Attention all Ninjas/Baptist Historians!

Maybe it is your mad ninja skills that keep me from noticing any answer to my first question.

Was the Sandy Creek Association friendly to the doctrines of grace or not? A special thanks to anonymous for mentioning Manly Sr. I will be at TFTG, but whether or not I see you is an entirely different matter I'm told. Now, anyone care to elaborate on #1?

Richard A. Bailey said...

Dang, even the Scarecrow could follow the yellow brick road and we know he was missing some vital organs (not to mention mad ninja skills). So, say it with me, "Follow the yellow brick road," paying special attention to the sign marked the "root of the matter."

Paul Lamey said...

"A heart, a brain, a home...the nerve"

Also my ninja skills have caused me to reflect upon a previous statement made here with this humble rejoining: in regards to the SBC...who has really left who here? Am I the one off the "reservation" or was Spurgeon really on to something (albeit in another context)? Just curious.

Antique Religion said...

In the spirit of the age, I am going to offer up an excuse. God sent a deluding influence, that is the only explanation.

Thank you for returning the stuffing, I'm pretty sure it has something to do with being a Southern Baptist. Maybe I should think about wandering off the reservation.

Anonymous said...

Adam,

Good grief...You ministers of music are notorious for not following instructions. Follow the given advice and read Lumpkin's listing of the Sandy Creek Association's confession of faith to answer your first question. If that isn't "friendly to the doctrines of grace" what is?

I now agree with Messieur Lamey. He is not a baptist historian. Likening Spurgeon's downgrade controversy to the current SBC is quite a stretch.

Nonetheless, on or off the reservation I am confident Lamey is doing Kingdom work with zeal and conviction. Traits to be admired.

Bailey, a couple of questions for you. First, what is your take on the I. U. vacancy? Were you ready for Davis to go? Also, when is your little one expected? What are you having?

Adam, Anonymous is anonymous, thus you do not know me to see me at TFTG. I asked if I would see you.

GO READ LUMPKIN!

Paul Lamey said...

If anonymous "JA" thinks the only reason Spurgeon separated from the Union was because of the down-grade then I all I can do is hang my head and ask, "what are they teaching you kids these days." BTW: He must have missed the comment about "another context."

Eventhough "anonymous" is plotting his take over of the convention, I still have hope for the SBC. Keep it real fellas and don't pick up anymore strangers at the Loop in Mobile. Some of us remember anonymous when he was cool.

Antique Religion said...

I remember anonymous when he was lurking around the house twelve bathroom...something about a hudge and a 300lb fellow saying, "you caught me." Different times.

Richard, the article on Shubal Stearns was helpful and informative. It does shed some light on my question. It also whets my appetite for more information as to how the two groups progressed and what happened to their unity. I jotted down some of Mr. Powell's sources and will take a look at these whenever I can get to an adequate library.

Allen said...

O house 12. Now that's good times there. We should probably set-up another blog devoted to H12. Wonder if isurvivedhouse12.blogspot.com is available?

Sorry, I really don't have any input on your original post, just thought it was appropriate for me to make my presence known since house 12 came up. As you were.

Allen said...

I am way off the reservation anyways.

Richard A. Bailey said...

Please don't call Josh Mr. Powell. Heck, I have a hard time calling him Josh. Usually other less charitable but more descriptive words come to mind first. He's a PhD student at SBTS, a genuine Baptist and hopeful southern historian, a pastor, a great golfer, and for the most part an all around good guy. I'd be happy to put you in touch with him sometime if you are still looking for more info after following Anonymoose's reading suggestions.

Now, to the important questions posed by our friend the unnamed but apparently not so unknown: As to the IU vacancy, I did think they likely had to make a change (and I really liked Davis). It will be interesting to see what happens in the next few weeks. Speculations and wishes abound--from Mark Few to John Calipari to Rick Pitino to Larry Bird to Bobby Knight to Steve Alford. Personally, I'd like to see Rick Majerus put down the cheesesteak and be named the coach. On the kid front, Leanne's due date is Mar 31 and she is having a boy. So we are in the final few days. Perhaps experiencing our last weekend without him. But we'll sit at home doing nothing. We like that too much.

I could likely set up a House 12 site on my host, which would free everyone from the land of blogger.com. I have plenty of space I am not using, but I imagine such a site would receive so many visits that it would suck up all my bandwidth on the first day of each month.

Paul Lamey said...

I think a house 12 blog would be a riot. I already have too many stories to tell. If these walls could talk or smell or rot or decay or oh well.

Who all blogs from 12? I know of Bailey, myself, Adam, Allen, Slayton...anyone else?

Paul Lamey said...

We would need to get a picture of that holy place also.

Richard A. Bailey said...

Certainly with all your Mobile connections, Paul, you can get someone to snap a photo. If not, with Chatel and John Nixon still in Mobile, perhaps one of them will come through for the House.

Allen said...

This could be the start of something great. I knew Bishop's blog would come in useful one day.

Anonymous said...

Gentlemen, gentlemen, gentlemen...
For those who have wandered I have good news, the reservation is always open and ready for your return. In fact, it is pretty much open and ready for anyone - ever heard of "a million more in 54."

In any event, you TMS friends of mine will continue to get your annual exposure to the reservation as long as the shepherd's conference keeps populating the starting lineup with SBC personalities.

And now for the run down...

Allen is only temporarily off the reservation, the paternalistic force will bring him back.

Paul, wherever you go, whatever you do, at heart you will remain a proxy member of the reservation. To adapt a common expression, You can take the boy out of Cottage Hill, but you can't take Cottage Hill out of the boy.

Richard, well I can't speak to Mr. Bailey. Perhaps Rich will answer. Richard, are you on or off the reservation?

And then there's Adam. Adam you are now and forevermore firmly ensconsed on the reservation. My hunch your "This is how i feel" picture was snapped while pondering this reality.

Who all is coming to TFTG? Is the distinguished expositor from Huntsville driving North?

Bishop, read Lumpkin!

Anonymous said...

One more thought. Forget house 12. I would rather contemplate hot meals and cold, real cold milk at Waffle House.

Antique Religion said...

You know, anonymous has the uncanny ability to influence weaker minds (some kind of Jedi trick no doubt) into mimicking this odd Waffle House behavior. I have personally witnessed more than one person which has been exposed to anonymous making this enigmatic request of waitresses. Milk in the freezer until food is ready. This goes right up there with, "Can you bring a small plate and take this Broccoli off my plate and take it away from the table."

And also a well known fact: Reservationists are mostly held against their will.

Richard A. Bailey said...

Well, Mr. Anonymoose, I suppose I can answer your question. While I, for the most part, would consider myself baptist, I do worship with the local ECUSA congregation. Not certain what that makes me and most days I really don't care. I can't ask for much more than fellowshipping with God's people, singing wonderful psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, praying for one another, confessing my sins against God and man, hearing the Word read and explained, and celebrating the second coming of Christ.

In short, it might not be the reservation, but it seems a lot like church.

Antique Religion said...

In the words of Baptist Fire - KABOOM!

Paul Lamey said...

Or how about, "I specifically asked for cheddar cheese on my burger and this here is American cheese, could you cook me a new burger and this time put cheddar cheese on it?"

Richard A. Bailey said...

But does Anonymoose place a sugar packet on the table and move it over when the wrong cheese comes (or some other type of serving error) with the understanding that if the packet falls off the table, then no tip is forthcoming?

Richard A. Bailey said...

Such a person might end up being your next State Auditor. So, vote early and often Alabamians to make certain that doesn't happen!

lutherwasright said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Antique Religion said...

I knew this was going to happen sooner or later. One of you semi-reservationists went and said something that you had to take back.

Allen said...

that's really funny.

Anonymous said...

Bishop,
Anonymous feels honored to having contributed to reformationstation's bump in the blogosphere. Now approaching 40 comments on one post, this is astounding.

You may inspire Lutherwasright to come out of retirement. For those who are yet to be edified and stirred by the profound online ponderings of lutherwasright, please, you owe it to yourself, see:

lutherwasright.blogspot.com

Enjoy!

Antique Religion said...

and right you are anonymous. for those of you who would like a primer to lutherwasright, please see this post.

lutherwasright said...

gentlemen, I am truly honored that you have recognized my blog. i stayed up many late nights pondering the wonders of the universe. let me change the subject though... i want you boys to know that there is nothing wrong with wanting the milk to come out of the kitchen ice cold as opposed to lukewarm. in fact, i did learn many things from our friend anonymous, but let the record show that i do not carry fountain pens or wear striped ties just to go eat at panera bread. (i probably just got kicked off the reservation for that comment.)

Paul Lamey said...

Someone asked: who will be at the TG4G conference or is it TGFTGC, at any rate yes I will be there with some of my posse. I will be easy to spot out, I will be the guy at the conference "not" wearing a striped tie, in fact no tie at all...on second thought I might not even wear a blue blazer or showcase my fountain pen in my non-starched white oxford button-down. I might even go real crazy and wear brown shoes instead of black loafers. Do you think I can still get in? BTW: will fountain pens explode in the new heaven and new earth?

Richard A. Bailey said...

While I won't be attending this big old conference in the Derby City (whatever acronym fits), I will most likely be in town and glad to share a pint or four at the Irish Rover with people making their way to Louisville. Fountain pens may not not make it to the new heaven and new earth, but Guinness certainly will. Like Turkish coffee, it's actually a little of the new heaven and new earth in the here and now.

Antique Religion said...

blazers and brew. how true, how true.

Paul Lamey said...

Richard always brings out my critical thinking skills which have led me to thus: if the new heaven and new earth will be devoid of all sin and if that means the noetic as well as the physical results of the Fall and if that includes germs, viruses, or bacteria THEN how could there be Guinness or any other like fermented beverage in that great city?

I'm no fundy (since I'm off the reservation) but it does cause one to wonder.

Richard A. Bailey said...

It might cause one to wonder, Paul. Of course such a comment equally makes me wonder if these germs, bacteria, etc, you mention are results of the Fall. From my biology days I know that many "good" bacteria, such as lactobacillus, are important to protecting the body from "bad" bacteria, say salmonella. Were these good bacteria in the human body prior to the Fall and the introduction of bad bacteria? Furthermore, some species of lactobacillus are used in the dairy industry and others protect certain delicate portions of the female anatomy--both of which I will argue are very good things (at least if we are talking about whole milk that is). This leads me to think good bacteria will likely have a place in this new heaven and new earth. Thus, Guinness is a shoo in! Just in case, though, I better go make certain I get plenty while I know it is around.