'Direct Operation of the Holy Spirit' primitive Baptist doctrine

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crossbearer89

Puritan Board Freshman
Hello folks, I desire to join a solid Reformed Baptist Church, but there are none in my area. (There is one far away, but I'm not sure I'd like to drive that far, tbh.) I did, however, see this primitive Baptist Church that looks appealing but I was not sure about a certain doctrine they believe: 'Direct Operation of the Holy Spirit'. I believe Calvinists teach that God uses the gospel or the preached word as a means of grace. I know pb's are generally viewed as being hyper Calvinists, so I'm not sure. I also don't believe foot washing is a church ordinance. This is what they had on there statement of faith regarding this doctrine.

"VI) Direct Operation of the Holy Spirit – The Holy Spirit accomplishes the new birth by direct operation upon the heart, and therefore works independently of all agency of man, including the gospel as preached by man.

Since the gospel is a spiritual thing, and since natural man rejects things of the Spirit, the gospel can never serve towards elevating natural men to a state of spirituality. Belief of the gospel is not a cause of spiritual birth; rather, it is a manifestation of such birth (Jn 1:11-13, Jn 5:24, Jn 8:43-47, Jn 10:25-27, Acts 13:48, 1Cor 1:18, Gal 5:22-23, 1Thes 1:4-5).

The scriptures teach certain infants have experienced spiritual birth (Ps 8:2, Ps 22:9, Mt 11:25, Mt 21:16, Lk 1:15, Lk 1:41) even though infants are incapable of receiving the preached word. However, the scriptures offer no support to the theory that infants are spiritually quickened by means other than adults. Indeed, the opposite is suggested (Mk 10:15). Nor do the scriptures teach a different scheme of spiritual quickening for those in Old Testament times. There is but one method of spiritual quickening that can be common to all; namely, by direct operation of the Holy Spirit.

Jesus taught that those dead in trespasses and sins would be quickened by the power of his voice (Jn 5:25-29). In this same context it is taught this voice will also raise the bodily dead at the end of time. A man can give the words of Christ but not His voice, and as Christ will not use man to raise the bodily dead, neither does He use man to raise the spiritually dead.

If it were the purpose of the gospel to accomplish spiritual birth in natural men, then the gospel should be most urgently directed toward the nonspiritual. In fact, this is not its principal direction in the scriptures (2Thes 3:1-3, Rom 15:31, Acts 18:9-10).

Though certain of the elect may be deprived of the natural faculties or circumstances necessary to receive the preached word (2Sam 12:18-23, Mt 9:37-38, Rom 15:30-31, 2Thes 3:1), such considerations do not limit the power of God to directly reveal His Son in the hearts of all the elect (Mt 11:25, Mt 16:17, Mt 21:16, Lk 1:15, Lk 23:39-43, Jn 5:25, Jn 5:38, Jn 6:37, Jn 6:44-45, Gal 3:8, Heb 8:10-12)."

There next point on the Revealing Gospel is also suspect to me. Any information you could offer would be greatly appreciated.

The site referred to: http://www.palmbethel.org/faq-about-primitive-baptists/
 
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TylerRay

Puritan Board Graduate
You have put your finger on the Primitive Baptists' greatest error--their denial of the means of grace (that is--they deny that God works through means to accomplish salvation). That is the shape that their hypercalvinsim takes.

Where do you live? Perhaps we can help you locate a sound church in your area.
 

Jake

Puritan Board Senior
If your profile information is correct, you may want to check out the OPC in Lake Worth, Florida which looks to be only about twenty minutes away. We have a couple of active folks on the board who attend there and I've heard good things. As a Reformed Baptist, you would have much in common with them.
 

johnny

Puritan Board Sophomore
What do the Primitive Baptists think about Westboro Baptist Church since they claim the same theology?
(In asking this question I am not meaning to offend our PB Brothers and Sisters, just wondering)
 

Jake

Puritan Board Senior
What do the Primitive Baptists think about Westboro Baptist Church since they claim the same theology?
(In asking this question I am not meaning to offend our PB Brothers and Sisters, just wondering)

WBC actually claims general adherence to some more mainstream Reformed confessions, including the London Baptist Confession and Savoy (which is held by Reformed Congregationalists). The link is broken on their site now, but here it is from last year: https://web.archive.org/web/20160310113907/http://www.godhatesfags.com/confessions/index.html
 
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