Following the Book

The Light
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Most of us have many acquaintances among our Baptist neighbors. Many are good people; very good people. But we are very convicted that they are wrong in several crucial portions of their reli­gion. It is significant that the Baptist church did not even exist on this earth until 1609, having its inception in Amsterdam with John Smyth as its "pastor."
Now, if you are not aware of it, the Bible says that the church is the body of Christ. Colossians 1:18 says, "[Jesus] is the head of the body, the church..." And Ephesians 1:22-23 reads: "And [God] hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church. Which is his [Jesus'] body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all."
And you probably recollect Ephe­sians 5:23: "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. " What does that say? Since Jesus is the saviour of the body, it is saying Jesus is the savior of the church. That is so very impor­tant. Remember that.
On pages 47-49 of his work, The Baptist Church and the New Testa­ment Church, brother Roy Deaver observes: "...the Baptist idea that one can be saved without
baptism means that it takes more to get into the Baptist church than it does for one to go to heaven. Baptists hold that one is saved by faith, the mo­ment he believes, and that he is later baptized into the Baptist church be­cause he has already been saved. If one can go to heaven because he is saved, and if one is saved by faith, and if one cannot get into the Baptist church without baptism—then, obvi­ously, it takes more to get into the Baptist church than it does to go to heaven!
"The doctrine of salvation without baptism means Baptist preachers cannot follow New Testament examples of conversion...The following quotation is from a book called The History of the Denton County Baptist Association and the Sixty Churches in Its Jurisdiction. This book was by Mr. J. N. Rayzor, a prominent Baptist of Denton, Texas. The quotation is found on page 82. Here it is:
"An incident occurred in the Pilot Point church during Rev. J. B. Cole's pastorate, which involved a point of doctrine that subjected Pastor Cole to criticism, and gave
the incident much publicity and notoriety. Pastor Cole went fishing one day with a business man who was not a Chris­tian, and he availed himself of the opportunity to talk to the lost man about his unsaved condition, and led him to an acceptance of Christ. Jo Ives, the man converted, said to Pas­tor Cole, 'Here is water, what doth hinder me from being baptized?'
"Obviously Brother Cole thought of the story of Philip and the Eunuch, and taking that incident as an exam­ple, he led Mr. Ives out into the water and baptized him.
Rev. Cole had been a Baptist but a short time and was not up on their conception of baptism, and how and when it should be administered. The news of the incident soon spread among the members, and then the show began.
"The following Sunday Mr. Ives presented himself to the church, ask­ing membership, and his application was rejected and he was hurt at the action of the church and turned to another church which readily ac­cepted his baptism. The criticism of the pastor caused him to ask a com­mittee of eminent brethren to sit in judgment upon his conduct-Dr. A. J. Holt, J. B. Link, and R. C. Buckner. After reviewing the details of the incident they wrote the church, advis­ing it to drop the matter, and Pastor Cole to go his way, but not to repeat the act. "
Brother Deaver then observes, "Note that Pastor Cole was advised by his eminent brethren never to follow this Bible example again. This is the story of a man who knew something about the Bible, and little about Baptist doctrine, and who thought he could follow a Bible ex­ample of conversion. But, he learned that such would not be tolerated."