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Category: Baptist Principles

Independence and Interdependence: Towards a Harmonization of the Congregational Principle and Associational Relationships

Baptist churches are congregational and therefore decisions made by the congregation are binding on that congregation. But are decisions made outside the congregation, at associational or union level binding on the congregation too?

How has COVID-19 and Lockdown Affected the Implementation of Congregationalism in our Churches

At this time, in the year 2021, we as Baptists have faced a huge challenge to the principle and practice of congregational church government, in that the lock-down has made it very difficult to hold members meetings, particularly for bigger churches. Here are a few of the difficulties: Congregations That Can’t Congregate South Africa went…
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The Role of the Leader in the Context of Congregationalism

Introduction One of the questions that always surfaces in the Baptist Principles class (at BTC) is the one relating to the role of the Pastor in a Church where the Principle of Congregational Church Government is upheld. They recognize that this principle can stifle good leaders and cause much frustration in their ministry. This same…
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What’s missing from our Baptist Principles

Recently, I had opportunity to discuss some finer points of the application of one of the Baptist Principles with a pastor friend. He happened to comment offhandedly, “I really think that our BU Statement of Principles could do with a freshen up and reworking.” I agree. In addition, I see two things missing from our…
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The Biblical Leadership Structure of the Local Church

It seems that the practice of a church Executive model as the leadership structure of a Baptist church has been ‘The Baptist Way” since Baptists arrived in South Africa in 1820. But is this what the Bible teaches as to how Jesus governs his church? Is an Executive (which typically includes all elders and deacons)…
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