What We Believe. (For more, See
Frequently Asked Questions)
Primitive Baptists Believe
In order to
help you develop an understanding of the basic doctrine of the Old Line
Primitive Baptist, here are some basic & fundamental points presented
in the form of Questions and Answers.
1. What is the
basic difference between Primitive Baptists and other religious
Answer: The basic difference is
that Primitive Baptists believe in salvation by grace. There are
really only two positions that a person can occupy on this matter.
One is that salvation is by grace, and the other is that salvation
is by works. It cannot be a combination of the two. A person may say
that he believes in salvation by grace, but if he sets forth any act
of man's will, such as repentance, faith, baptism, or hearing the
gospel, as a condition for obtaining it, then this position must be
put on the works side. Primitive Baptists believe that salvation is
of the Lord, that it is by His grace, and that nothing needs to be
added to it.
2. What do
Primitive Baptists believe about the fall of man?
3. How do
Primitive Baptists support their view of unconditional election?
Answer: They believe that Ephesians
chapter one plainly teaches that before the foundation of the world,
God, according to His own sovereign pleasure, elected a people to
eternal salvation and made all of the arrangements necessary for
them to live with Him in glory.
4. What is
their position on predestination?
Answer: They believe that God has
predestinated a great number to be conformed to the image of His Son
28-30) .While some object to this doctrine because they say it
is unfair, Primitive Baptists rejoice in it, for they see that had
it not been for predestination, the whole human family would have
been lost forever. Predestination is not the thing that condemns a
man, or puts him in a ruined condition, but the very thing that gets
him out of such a state. Predestination concerns not "what" but
"whom." It is the great purpose of God to lift a people up from sin
and corruption and make them like Jesus Christ. That's glorious!
5. Did not
Jesus die for the whole human race?
Answer: No, the Scriptures will not
support that idea. Jesus said He came into the world to do the will
of His Father, and that will was that He should save all who were
given Him (the elect) even before the world began (John
6: 37-39). Jesus came to save HIS PEOPLE from their sins, and He
did it (Matt.
Rom. 8: 33,
34). He died for His sheep, not for goats (John
10: 15). He died for sons, for the sanctified, for the brethren,
for the church, and for the children (Heb.
2: 9-15). He saw the travail of His soul and was satisfied (Isa.
53: 10-12) .
6. Do Primitive
Baptists deny that Christ died for the world ?
7. How do you
know that all of the elect will respond to the call of the Spirit ?
8. Do you not
then teach that some might want salvation but could not have it because
they are not one of the elect?
Answer: No, the man who wants
salvation already HAS it. The man who hungers and thirsts (desires
it) after righteousness is a blessed character (Matt.
5: 2-6). The alien sinner doesn't want salvation, he doesn't
fear God, and he doesn't love God; therefore we conclude that the
man who wants salvation, fears God and loves God is a subject of
grace (Rom. 3: 11, 18;
I John 4: 10) .
9. Why then do
you preach, if you are already sure that all of the elect are going to
be saved in Heaven?
10. Don't you
believe that the preaching of the gospel is God's ordained means of
bringing eternal salvation to the sinner?
Answer: No, only by the direct
operation of the Holy Spirit can eternal life be brought to the dead
3 : 6-8) .The gospel brings life and immortality to light, but
doesn't produce life (llTim.1: 10).
11. How then do
I Corinthians 1 :21 and passages like it?
Answer: The text says, "For after
that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it
pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that
believe." Please notice, that the one saved by the gospel is a
believer, one who believes in God, one who has already been born
again ; he is not an alien sinner .
12. Why is it
that Primitive Baptists do not send out missionaries?
Answer: First, they believe that
since preaching is not designed to make people ready for a home in
Heaven, it is not necessary to send men across the seas in order to
"save souls." The Lord put gifts in the church, and these are listed
Ephesians 4: 11; there is no mention of a missionary.
Furthermore, the gifts that the Lord did put in the church were not
put there for the purpose of saving souls but "for the perfecting of
the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the
body of Christ" (Eph.
they believe that gospel ministers should go where they are directed
by the Spirit and not by a mission board (Acts
20: 22-23). Primitive Baptists believe that if the Lord
impresses one of His servants to go to a foreign land to preach the
gospel, he ought to go at once and not wait for someone to pay his
13. Why is it
that Primitive Baptists do not have Sunday Schools?
Answer: This ties in very closely
with the previous question. The Lord put gifts in the church, and so
the church has no more right to appoint someone to teach than they
do to call a man to preach. We believe that "pastors and teachers"
are one office. Children ought to be brought up in the nurture and
admonition of the Lord (Eph.
6: 4), but this is the responsibility of the parents in the
home. The church cannot possibly do for a child in one hour a week
what his parents should have been doing all week long. The Sunday
School is another of man's inventions which is generally used as a
"soul-saving" agency But it must be emphasized that Jesus the
Saviour is the only soul winner and that man never has been able to
do that work (Heb.
8 :11). Furthermore, we are taught that women are to keep
silence in the churches (1
Cor. 14: 34), and this is ignored in most Sunday Schools and
Bible Schools. The church should be taught by the pastor, who is to
be a God-called man and who must be apt to teach even before being
recognized by the church as an elder (1
Tim. 3: 2).
14. Why are
your ministers called Elder?
Primitive Baptists Protestants ?
Answer: No, the true church of
Jesus Christ was established before the religious institutions of
men bearing the name "Christian" came into being and has been
somewhere in the world since that time. The true church was in
existence long before the Protestant Reformation, so it cannot
really be called a Protestant Church.
16. Why is it
that Primitive Baptists do not build hospitals, orphanages, and other
Answer: It is not that they are
unconcerned about caring for those who have need, because they feel
to have a duty in that regard. But the church is a spiritual body
and not a charitable institution. The church is a home for God's
people where the gospel of Christ is proclaimed, His ordinances are
observed and discipline is maintained. It is the duty of every
member of the church to visit the fatherless and widows in their
1: 27), and prayer should be offered for the sick (James
5: 14-16) ; but it is the chief aim of the church to render a
spiritual service that is pleasing to God (
John 4: 24).
17. Do you
believe in tithing?
Answer: No, this was a requirement
put on the Israelites under the old law service but is not binding
today. If we bring over part of the old Jewish service into the
church, we might as well bring it all. God's people in this
dispensation ought to give, but the principle set forth is that "God
loveth a cheerful giver" (II
Cor. 9: 7).
Primitive Baptist ministers receive a salary?
Answer: No, they devote their time
and substance to the service of God out of love, and as the Lord
blesses their labors among His people, those among whom the minister
has labored contribute willingly to his needs (ICor. 9: 9-14).
19. Is it true
that Primitive Baptists wash feet?
Answer: Yes, Jesus said we ought to
wash each other's feet, and Primitive Baptists do so. "Ye call me
Master and Lord: and ye say well ; for so I am. If I then, your Lord
and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one
another's feet." (John
Primitive Baptists actually believe they are the only ones going to
Answer: Absolutely not; in fact
they allow for a larger number being in Heaven than most religious
societies. Ideas like this have been started by the enemies of the
church and not by her friends. Jesus is the firstborn among MANY
brethren. There will be a people in Heaven out of every nation on
5: 9-12). No one will be there because of what he believed, but
many will be there in spite of it. One's doctrinal views or church
affiliation has nothing to do with his destiny.
21. Can you
know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you are saved?
Answer: In response to this
question we would ask another; does any man have access to the
Lamb's Book of Life? Of course there is but one Answer:. No man
knows the names which are recorded there, so we must say with Paul,
"In hope of eternal life" (Titus
1: 2) .We are confident that the God Who cannot lie is going to
save those He loved before the world began, and we have the sweet
hope of being in the number. When Jesus said one of His disciples
would deny Him and was a devil from the beginning, they all asked,
"Lord, is it I?" We must acknowledge that if some can be deceived,
thinking they are a child of God but are not, we could be in that
number. A humble expression of hope in the mercy of God is far more
befitting the little child of grace than a presumptuous boast that
he knows he is secure.
22. Why do you
not preach that God loves everybody?
23. Since you
believe that your destiny is in the hands of God and that you can do
nothing about it, does this not cause you a great deal of anxiety?
24. For what
purpose were the Scriptures written?
25. Is not the
word the means by which we are born again?
Answer: It is true that we are born
again by the Word of God which liveth and abideth for ever, but that
Word is not the written word, or the preached word, but the living
I Peter 1: 23-25) ."And this is the word which by the gospel is
preached unto you." The Word and the gospel are two distinct things.
Christ and the message of Christ are not synonymous. The gospel is
the good news of what Christ has done for His people.
Primitive Baptists believe in preaching the gospel to sinners?
Answer: Yes, because the only
people in the world interested in the gospel of grace are poor,
needy sinners. A man must be made sensible of his sin by the Spirit,
must be born again to receive the gospel message (Luke
32; I Cor. 2: 14). The gospel is not addressed to the dead alien
sinner but to the burdened sinner (Matt.
27. Do you call
upon men to repent and believe?
Answer:Yes, the burdened sinner
ought to repent and believe the truth. The one who thus repents,
believes, and is baptized is going to be saved from the distress he
feels and from much error and confusion (Mark
16: 16). The salvation involved here is not that which takes a
man to Heaven, but that which saves his life here in the world (Acts
28. What is
meant by the expression, "the gospel or militant church?"
Answer: There are two phases of the
church. The universal church or the church of the first born is made
up of all the children of God. This is the church which Christ
purchased and which He shall finally present without spot or wrinkle
and therefore must involve more than one assembly or body of people
Heb. 12: 23). Then the visible, gospel or militant church was
set up by Christ as a home for His people during the days of their
pilgrimage. To enter the gospel church one must be taught by the
gospel and follow the Lord in obedience through the waters of
baptism. The gospel church is but a little flock in each place where
it is found (Matt.
Luke 12: 32;
Rom. 16: 16;
II Cor. 1: 1) but the church which shall be housed in heaven
includes multitudes (Heb.
Rev. 5:9 and
Primitive Baptists preach infants in Hell ?
Answer: No, the doctrine preached
by Primitive Baptists is the only message which leaves any hope for
infants, the feeble-minded, and the heathen, most religious groups
preach that one must hear and understand the gospel, actively obey
the gospel, and manifestly believe on Christ, in order to become a
child of God. But the great message of grace which is so firmly
believed and preached by Old Baptists, declares that one may be a
recipient of the mercy of God without hearing the report of it
through the gospel and even without fully understanding what has
taken place in his heart. If infants, the feeble minded, and the
heathen must hear the gospel preached by man and actively repent and
believe the truth, then there is no hope for them. But since
salvation is by the sovereign grace of God through the work of His
Son, we know that He will save His own regardless of their
circumstances in life (Rom. 8 :34-39;
Rom. 11 :28;
II Tim. 2 :13,
Where did the Primitive Baptists get their
Answer: The true church has been known by several
different names since Christ set it up during His earthly ministry
.In centuries past those who made up the gospel church have been
known as Christians, Donatists, Waldenses, Albigenses, Ana-Baptists,
and others. Around the year 1832 there was a division in the Baptist
family in this country. Those who insisted on establishing mission
boards, Sunday Schools, and other unscriptural societies in the
church became known as the New School or Missionary Baptists. Those
who continued to walk in the old paths were known as Old School or
Primitive Baptists. The word primitive simply means: "Of early
times; of long ago ; first of the kind; very simple; original." The
Primitive Baptist Church is certainly of early times, from the time
of Christ. It is the first of the kind, tracing its identity to the
church which Christ established. It is very simple, adorned only
with that beauty which Christ gave His church. It is original, the
very church of Christ.
principles set forth here find a response in your heart, we would
encourage you to attend services at a true old-line Primitive Baptist
Church near you. You will find a very simple but beautiful form of
worship as God's people meet to sing the old songs of Zion, pray, and
delight themselves in the joyful sound of the gospel. And you will find
that the fellowship is sweet with those who have felt themselves to be
poor, needy sinners, but have been blessed to rejoice in hope.
Regrettably, not all churches who carry the name Primitive Baptist
adhere to the old ways. Unfortunately, there are those who now advocate
missions (while denying them to be such), salaried pastors, and a host
of other changes to the church which are clearly unscriptural.