SGBC Modesto

Regular Baptist

March 6, 2024 by

William Heinrich

Was the GARBC a “moderately Calvinistic” fellowship in its beginning as the article states?  Did it only ascribe to the 1833 New Hampshire confession? Did the GARBC consider the term “regular” in its historical interpretation of particular or in a new meaning of regular versus irregular, as the article teaches? Lastly, if the term regular had changed its meaning then what did they consider regular and what did they consider irregular? Do they consider particular now as irregular?

 All these are answered clearly by a GARBC booklet written by Joseph M. Stowell, the National Rep.  The booklet traces the association history to the 2nd association meeting in Buffalo New York in May of 1933. ”It does not in any way propose to preserve a denominational order, but rather to reaffirm the truths of Scripture historically believed by Baptists and expressed by the Baptist Confessions of Faith of London 1689 or the New Hampshire Confession of Faith of the Philadelphia Confession of faith or the Baptist Bible Union Confession of Faith or any such which enunciates the same truths though in other words”

It should be clear that the GARBC was formed reaffirming the historical view of regular not regular vs. irregular.  In fact the First National Rep H.C. Vedder addresses the idea of regular and irregular Baptist saying, “There are numerous other bodies that agree with these “Regular” Baptists in their fundamental doctrine of the constitution of the Church and the nature of baptism, but differ from them more or less widely on other points of doctrine or practice. The most important of these are the Free Will Baptists, or Free Baptists, as they now call themselves.”  Vedder then comments upon an outstanding distinction between the “Regulars” and the “Irregulars” when he points to the origin of the Free Will group in New Hampshire in 1780 and states of its founder that he (Benjamin Randall) “…joined a Regular Baptist Church, by which he was disfellowshipped for rejecting Calvinistic doctrines

Also, a clear statement by the Third National Rep of the GARBC cements the formation of our great fellowship upon the historical meaning of “Regular” on June 29, 1967.  “The GARBC is an association of Regular Baptist churches. The word ‘regular’ in our title indicates that we hold the regular, historic and Biblical position held by Baptists for centuries, in contrast to the centralized Convention system that invaded Baptist churches in the north in 1907, with the organization of the Northern Baptist Convention (now American Baptist Convention).”

Lastly, what did the confessions of faith say concerning the subject of regular? “God did from all eternity decree to justify all the elect, and Christ did in the fullness of time die for their sins, and rise again for their justification; nevertheless, they are not justified personally until the Holy Spirit doth in due time actually apply Christ unto them. (Gal 3:8, 1 Pet 1:2, 1 Tim 2:6, Rom 4:25, Col 1:21, 22, Tit 3:4-7).

Particular or Regular Baptist taught and teach that the Father choose some as a gift to His Son.  That the Son died for the chosen ones or sheep. And the Holy Spirit regenerated the chosen and atoned ones. That was and is the belief of Regular Baptist proven repeatedly in history. Regular Baptist are not general or Free Will Baptist.