House Church Talk - Re: Baptisms and Administrations

Bruce Woodford bwood4d at
Fri Mar 12 22:20:31 EST 2004

Hi Ross,

You wrote:" I do appreciate Sir Robert Anderson even if I don't agree with 
him at all on a number of things. I have read through a few of his books and 
scanned most of the rest and would recommend them as stimulating reading if 
you don't mind a bit dated English."

Have you read "The Coming Prince"?  If so, do you think that Anderson is 
true to his own stated principles? Or do you believe that he has 
intentionally "pulled the wool over" the eyes of most of his unsuspecting 

I had written:"If you believe that some doctrines of scripture must be 
deduced but are not explicitly stated, can you list some examples other than 
the doctrine relative to the Body of Christ and baptism which you have been 
seeking to defend here???"

And you responded:"Bruce, it is not that I don't think that doctrine can be 
explicitly stated, I do, BUT, we always have to consider the context of I 
statement and in some cases we also have to consider other statements made 
in other contexts which modify one's understanding. We also can not deny 
that there are plenty of ambiguous statements too. Teachings like the nature 
of God, the nature of man, eschatology, and soteriology are not going to be 
grasped from a few prooftexts outside their contexts. Baptism is not so cut 
and dried and does have a very wide context that goes back as far as the old 
covenant and as forward as the new covenant. While we can make distinctions, 
we can not ignore what is common. That is the what I mean by "deducing" a 
teaching (and does not necessarily have anything to do with "deductive Bible 

Brother, I don't think you answsered my question at all!   You have not 
mentioned one doctrine of scripture which must be arrived at by deduction.  
Your first statement seems to indicate that you believe your doctrines CAN 
be stated explicitly from scripture, but you have not directed us to any 
such explicit scriptural statement of scripture which teaches your doctrine 
relative to the Body of Christ or relative to baptism!   Why not???

When I said that every scriptural doctrine is stated in the very words of 
scripture, I do not ignore the fact that statements of scripture must always 
be understood within their contexts and in relation to other statements of 
scripture.  However, I do believe that the most comprehensive statement 
which includes the word in the original language by which a doctrine is 
known will be the scriptural summary statement of that doctrine.  Where a 
doctrine is prominent in both old and new testaments, one may find such a 
statement in both testaments.  All other statements in scripture relative to 
that particular doctrine will be in complete harmony with that summary 

For example, the most comprehensive statements in old and new testaments on 
the doctrine of God's election/choosing  of sinful men are as follows:

Isaiah 49:7  Thus saith the LORD, the Redeemer of Israel, and his Holy One, 
to him whom man despiseth, to him whom the nation abhorreth, to a servant of 
rulers, Kings shall see and arise, princes also shall worship, because of 
the LORD that is faithful, and the Holy One of Israel, and he shall choose  

I Corinthians 1:26-29 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many 
wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:  but 
God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and 
God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which 
are mighty;  and base things of the world, and things which are despised, 
hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things 
that are: that no flesh should glory in his presence.

The most comprehensive statements in each testament relative to Christ's 
virgin birth are as follows:

Isaiah 7:14  Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a 
virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Mat thew 1:22,23 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was 
spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with 
child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, 
which being interpreted is, God with us.

The most comprehensive statement of the doctrine of substitution is as 

The doctrine of substitution is NOT a scriptural doctrine, and is never 
found in the pages of scripture!   A substitute is one which takes the place 
of another to do something which the original was normally able to do.  
Christ did not come to be our substitute! He came to do something for us 
that we never could have done for ourselves!

The most comprehensive statement of the doctrine of justification by faith 
alone is as follows:

This doctrine is NOT a scriptural doctrine, is not found anywhere in 
scripture but is based on the deductions of men which contradict many clear 
statements of scripture!  Justification is NOT by faith ALONE!

Justification is BY CHRIST Gal.2:17, but Christ had to fulfill a work...
So justification is  BY HIS BLOOD. Romans 5:9, but in order to be justified, 
one must believe in Christ and His finished work...
So justification is BY FAITH.  Romans 5:1, but the work of washing, 
sanctifying, and justifying  is done by the Spirit...
So justification is BY THE SPIRIT OF OUR GOD, I Cor.6:11,  but if the 
behaviour of a man who claims to be justified is not changed in any way, he 
is not justified...
So justification is BY WORKS. James 2:24,25

So by allowing the explicit statements of scripture to say what they say, we 
learn that "justification by faith alone" is a false doctrine!

The most comprehensive statement in scripture relative to the church which 
is Christ's body  and the most comprehensive statement in scripture relative 
to a dispensation is the same passage of scripture! ....Colossians1:21-29

And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked 
works, yet now hath he reconciled  in the body of his flesh through death, 
to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight:  if ye 
continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the 
hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every 
creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister;  who now 
rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the 
afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body's sake, which is the church:  
whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is 
given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God; even the mystery which hath 
been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his 
saints:  to whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of 
this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:  
whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; 
that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:  whereunto I also 
labour, striving according to his
working, which worketh in me mightily.

The most comprehensive statement contrasting John's and Jesus' baptisms is 
the following:
Mat thew 3:11,12 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that 
cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he 
shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire: whose fan is in his 
hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the 
garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

The most comprehensive statement reltive to the baptism of disciples is the 
Mat thew 28:19,20 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in 
the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them 
to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with 
you alway, even unto the end of the world.

The most comprehensive statement relative to a baptism in old testament 
times is the following:
I Corinthians 10:1-4Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be 
ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed 
through the sea; and were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the 
sea; and did all eat the same spiritual meat; and did all drink the same 
spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: 
and that Rock was Christ.

Your brother in Christ,

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