Tuesday, May 02, 2006

a little history reminder

The Whitsitt Controversy happen many years ago. so long ago that we, as baptist have forgotten. Here a link to Nolin on this subject as well as an excerpt from his writing to remind you and stir intrest. Let me know what you think.


History of Kentucky Baptists -- 1770-1922, By William Dudley Nowlin

Chapter 13 [p. 142]
What is known as "The Whitsitt Controversy" began in the spring of 1896. Doctor Whitsitt wrote an article on the Baptists for Johnson's Encyclopedia, in which he set forth his theory that the English Baptists did not begin to baptize by immersion until 1641, when a part of the Anabaptists, as they were then called, began immersion. Doctor Whitsitt in this article used language which many Baptists interpreted to mean that immersion as a Christian ordinance was started at that time. It is but fair to Doctor Whitsitt, however, to say that he in the introduction to his book "A Question in Baptist History," a book called out by the controversy, says:

"Immersion as a religious rite was practiced by John the Baptist about the year 30 of our era, and was solemnly enjoined by our Saviour upon all his ministers to the end of time. No other observance was in use for baptism in New Testament times. The practice, though some times greatly perverted, has yet been continued from the apostolic age down to our own. As I understand the scriptures, immersion is essential to Christian baptism."

1 comment:

Ben Stratton said...

Great quote by Whitsitt. I find it interesting that he admits that immersion has been practiced continually from the days of the apostles down to the present.

Nowlin is also an interesting figure. He once pastored the First Baptist Church in the town where I live. I have several of his books. He was a strong Landmarker as well.