From One Baptist Church to Another

Here is an excellent reflection by Kevin Bauder on the nature of Baptist congregational life and the way that the independence of the local church must be balanced with the interdependence of congregations of like faith and practice. The concrete case that is at the base of his reflection is a letter from the elders at Clifton Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky (Thomas Schreiner, Bruce Ware, Shawn Wright, and Brian Vickers, all of whom are professors at Southern Baptist Seminary) to the elders of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota, regarding the latter church’s proposal of withdrawing the necessity of believers’ baptism as a prerequisite of church membership. As it turns out, this proposal has itself been withdrawn. See Clifton and Bethlehem, Pedobaptist Churches?,  & Bethlehem and Baptism.