A Catholic Reformed Theologian: Federalism and Baptism in the Thought of Benjamin Keach, 1640-1704 by D. B. Riker (SBHT Vol. 35, Paternoster, 2009)


1. Keach in Context

Continuity within Church History
Biography and Literature Review
Tradition, Successionism and Scholasticism

2. Keach’s Federal Theology

Seventeenth Century Setting
An Exposition of Keach’s Federal Theology
Evaluation and Conclusion

3. Keach’s Doctrine of Baptism

Introductory Considersations
Keach’s Interlocutors and Antagonists
Keach’s Doctrine of Baptism
Mode of Execution
Evaluation and Conclusion


Anthony R. Cross Inaugural Lecture

Anthony R. Cross will be giving his inaugural lecture as Director of the Centre for Baptist History and Heritage, Regent’s Park College on the 8th June 5pm at the College. The title of the lecture is:

Should we take Peter at his word (Acts 2:38)? Recovering a Baptist Baptismal Sacramentalism

Exploring Baptist Origins

Anthony R. Cross and Nicholas J. Wood (eds.), Exploring Baptist Origins (Centre for Baptist History and Heritage Studies, Vol 1; Regent’s Park College, 2010), 163pp (£20 – order a copy here)

This is the first volume of the new series emerging out of the Centre for Baptist History and Heritage based at Regent’s Park College. The collection of papers were first delivered in the autumn of 2009 in celebration of 400 years since the birth of Baptist beginnings. Including some of the UK’s leading Baptist theologians – Paul Fiddes, Stephen Holmes, Brian Haymes – the book seeks to examine historically and theologically the beginnings of Baptist life.

Haymes, not for the first time, engages with Thomas Helwys’ The Mystery of Iniquity, asking whether it has relevance for today and concluding with a challenge for more ‘unashamedly political theologies’.  Fiddes explores the question of whether Baptists are a church or a sect, interacting with the famous studies of Weber and Troeltsch, and highlighting the distinctive covenant theology of early Baptists.  Holmes extends earlier published arguments of the dangers of just reading the Bible through the Salters’ Hall incident of 1719. Keith Jones assesses Baptists and Anabaptists through the life of the Lithuanian Baptist Jonas Inkenas, exploring five themes: ecclesial interdependency; leadership; communities in hostile surroundings; spirituality; and women at the heart of Baptist life. Anthony Cross and Larry Kreitzer provide historical studies of why baptists adopted believers’ baptism and the anabaptist petitions of 1660 and 1661 respectively. The other contributer is Crawford Gribben who looks at the beliefs about millennialism in early Baptist life in relation to their ecclesiology.

This is an interesting and revealing set of essays, engaging with how Baptists began. The best or most interesting are those that ask questions of Baptists today in light of their forebears, showing how they can offer challenge and help as we seek to be Baptist Christians.

Beyond this book, it is exciting to see Regent’s begin a new series of Baptist studies, especially as its other series, Regent’s Study Guides, is coming to an end. If your a British Baptist and engaged in postgraduate study on baptistic themes, here is a potential place for your research to reach a wider audience. Coming soon are volumes on a theology of ministry and ordination from Paul Goodliff and membership and belonging from Darrell Jackson.

Download Doctrine and Worship Committee Reports

On the BUGB website it is now possible to download three of the key reports from the 1990s by the Doctrine and Worship Committee, chaired at the time by Paul Fiddes.

The Nature of Assembly and the Council of the Baptist Union of Great Britain (1994)

Forms of Ministry among Baptists: Towards an Understanding of Spiritual Leadership (1994)

Believing and Being Baptized: Baptism, so-called re-baptism and children in the church (1996)

Lectures on Exploring Baptist Origins (advance warning)

The Oxford Centre for Christianity and Culture lectures in Michaelmas Term 2009 will be on Exploring Baptist Origins. 5pm at Regent’s Park College.

20 October: Baptists and Anabaptists Reassessed – Keith Jones

27 October: Early Baptist Views on Baptism – Anthony Cross

3 November: William Kiffin and Particular Baptist Origins – Larry Kreitzer

10 November: The Dangers of Just Reading the Bible: Orthodoxy and Christology – Stephen Holmes

17 November: A Radically Different World: In and Out of Time – Crawford Gribben

24 November: Thomas Helwys’ The Mystery of Iniquity: Is it still relevant in the Twenty-First Century? – Brian Haymes

1 December: Sect and Chruch: A Critical Dialectic – Paul Fiddes

On Being the Church: Revisioning Baptist Identity by Brian Haymes, Ruth Gouldbourne, Anthony Cross (SBHT 21, Paternoster, 2008)

This book re-examines Baptist theology and practice in the light of contemporary biblical, theological, ecumenical and missiological perspectives. It is not a study in denominationalism, but rather attempts to revision historical insights from the believer’s church tradition, essentially within a trinitarian emphasis. It is a re-expression of that tradition, seeking to re-appropriate forgotten emphases, bringing them together in a revised ecclesiology.

Foreword – Paul S. Fiddes

By Way of Introduction

1. The God of the People

2. The People of God

3. Authority

4. Baptism: Becoming a Christian

5. Discipleship

6. The Lord’s Supper

7. Ministry

8. The One Church, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic

9. Institution and Organization

Baptist Sacramentalism 2 edited by Anthony Cross and Philip Thompson (SBHT Vol 25, Paternoster, 2008)

Foreword – Francis Schussler Fiorenza

Introduction: Practicing Sacramentality in Baptist Modality – Philip Thompson

Embodied Grace: Exploring the Sacraments and Sacramentality – Christopher J. Ellis

‘We have an altar’: a Baptist View of  Sacrament and Sacrifice in Hebrews – J. Ramsey Michaels

The Sacrament of Fearful Intimacy – Jim Purves

The Church as Sacrament: A Mediating Presence – John E. Colwell

Re-thinking a Sacramental View of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper for the Post-Christendom Baptist Church – Michael F. Bird

Ambiguous Genitives, Pauline Baptism and Roman Insulae: Resoources from Romans to Support Pushing at the Boundaries of Unity – Sean F. Winter

A Feast for All? Reflecting Open Communion for the Contemporary Church – Anthony Clarke

Penance – Paul Sheppy

Can Baptists Believe in Sacred Space? Some Theological Reflections – Graham J.Watts

Baptismal Regeneration: Rehabilitating a Lost Dimension of New Testament Baptism – Anthony R. Cross

The Lord’s Supper and the Spirituality of C. H. Spurgeon – Peter K. Morden

Southern Baptists, Sacramentalism, and Soul Competency – Sean A. White

Ex Opere Operato: Re-thinking a historic baptist Rejection – Paul S. Fiddes

The Sacramentality of the Word in Gregory of Nyssa’s Catechetical Oraiton: Implications for a Baptist Sacramental Theology – Steven R. Harmon

Baptists and Churches of Christ in Search of a Common Theology of Baptism – Stanley K. Fowler

Dimensions of Baptism: Biblical and Theological Studies edited by Stanley E. Porter and Anthony R. Cross (2002)

Introduction: Baptism – An Ongoing Debate – Stanley E. Porter and Anthony R. Cross

The Meaning of the Verb ‘Baptize’ – Howard Marshall

John the Baptist: His Immersion and Death – Bruce Chilton

The Baptism of John in a Typological Context – Craig A. Evans

‘She and her household were baptized’ (Acts 16.15): Household Baptism in the Acts of the Apostles – Joel Green

Did Paul Baptize Himself? A Problem of the Greek Voice System – Stanley E. Porter

‘Getting in and Staying in’: Unexpected Connections between E. P. Sanders on Paul and Expectations of Baptism Today – Hazel Sherman

Spirit- and Water-Baptism in 1 Corinthians 12.13 – Anthony R. Cross

Bby WAter and Blood: Sin and Purification in John and First John – J. Ramsey Michaels

The Meaning of ‘Baptisms’ in Hebrews 6.2 – Anthony R. Cross

Out, In, Out: Jesus’ Blessing of the Children and Infant Baptism – David F. Wright

Christian and Jewish Baptism according to the Epistle of Barnabas – Everett Ferguson

The Doctrine of Baptism in Gregory of Nyssa’s Oratio Catechetica – Everett Ferguson

Baptism Then and Now: Does Moltmann Bury Tertullian or Praise Him? – Roy Kearsley

Baptism: Patristic Resources for Ecumenical Dialogue – Stephen R. Holmes

Baptism and the Hiddeness of God – Graham Watts

Baptism and the Process of Christian Initiation – Paul S. Fiddes

Memorial Dimensions of Baptism – Philip E. Thompson

The Moral Miracle of Faith – Brian Haymes

A Baptist View (ed. Alec Gilmore, Baptist Union)

Ministry: A Baptist View – John F. V. Nicholson (1976)

The Church: A Baptist View – Gordon W. Martin (1976)

Baptism: A Baptist View – John F. Matthews (1976)

Authority: A Baptist View – B. R. White (1976)

Freedom: A Baptist View – John H. Y. Briggs (1976)

Children in the Church: A Baptist View – David F. Tennant (1978)

Charismatic Renewal: A Baptist View – Paul S. Fiddes (1980)

More Than A Symbol: The British Baptist Recovery of Baptismal Sacramentalism by Stanley K. Fowler (Vol. 2, SBHT, Paternoster, 2002)

Foreword – William H. Brackney


1. The Historical Background: Baptist Views of Sacramentalism from 1600-1900
17th Century
Robert Garner, Henry Lawrence, Thomas Grantham, Benjamin Keach, William Mitchill
18th Century
John Gill, Abraham Booth, Anne Dutton, Andrew Fuller, John Ryland Jr.
19th Century
Robert Hall Jr., Alexander Carson, Charles Stovel, Baptist W. Noel, John Howard Hinton, C. H. Spurgeon, Richard Ingham

2. The Reformulation of Baptist Sacramentalism
H. Wheeler Robinson
A. C. Underwood
Robert Walton
Henry Cook
Neville Clark
The Publication of Christian Baptism
R. E. O. White
G. R. Beasley-Murray
Alec Gilmore
Denominational Statements
Baptist Service Books

3. The Analysis of the Biblical Foundations

4. An Analysis of the Theological Formulation

5. The Significance of Baptist Sacramentalism