Saturday, August 18, 2007

"What is a Reformed Baptist?" Poll Update

After the first month of this poll, over half of those responding thus far do not think strict adherence to the Baptist Confession of 1689 is necessary to being a Reformed Baptist. Here is the breakdown thus far (found at the bottom of the page):

10% thought that one only had to be a Baptist who held to Calvinistic

35% thought that one must be a Baptist who holds to Calvinism and Covenant

46% thought that one must be a Baptist who holds to the 1689

7% thought that one must hold to the 1689 Confession for the most part, but
thought that this should not have to include adherence to the Sabbath

This is taken from a small sample thus far, and I hope that there will be many other respondents to the poll over the coming year. There are 335 days left to vote, so if you haven't responded yet, scroll down to the bottom of the page and weigh in.

It is also interesting that the articles describing Reformed Baptists at both Wikipedia and Theopedia do not include adherence to the Baptist Confession of 1689 as necessary to being Reformed Baptist. For example, the Wikipedia article states that Reformed Baptists "typically adhere to the 1644 or 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith." And the Theopedia article states that they "quite often adhere to either the First or Second London Baptist Confession of 1644 and 1689 respectively." In addition, the Wikipedia article lists the Fellowship of Independent Reformed Evangelicals among the associations considered to be Reformed Baptist, although it does not adhere to either of the aforementioned confessions. And both of the articles include Founders Ministries, which also does not adhere to either of these confessions.

Anyway, I am eager to see what this year's poll shows.


  1. Maybe those that think you should adhere strictly to the 1689 confession should call themselves so. Something like "1689 Confession Baptists," then everyone would know they were reformed AND had to hold to the 1689.


  2. Well, I think they should rightly call themselves Reformed Baptists, since that is clearly what they are. I just think we should recognize that there are varieties of Reformed Baptists.

  3. You know there are some Baptists who subscribe to the 1689 but don't think *any* of us should call ourselves Reformed Baptists.

    "Reformed" refers to a specific, distinctively paedobaptist confessional tradition. So the idea of a Reformed Baptist is sort of like trying to be a Lutheran Baptist, Eastern Orthodox Baptist, Methodist Baptist, etc...

    Furthermore, since when did it become the received practice among us Baptists, to think that Reformed= biblical? Perhaps we could find a more suitable adjective to define our Baptist system?

    Playfully yours,

  4. Actually, I think that adding the word "Baptist" to "Reformed" shows that we have not stopped with the reforming work. We went all the way and further reformed Church polity and the ordinances in accordance with Scripture. And we corrected some of the mistakes of a paedobaptist Covenant theology.

    We agreed that the Reformed believers were on the right track on a number of issues, but feel that they did not go far enough.

    As the title of John Quincy Adams' old book put it, we are Baptists, The Only Thorough Religious Reformers.

    Semper reformanda!