Statement of Baptist Principles
The beliefs of Baptists are in harmony with those of other Evangelical Churches as to saving truths. Why, then do they form a separate denomination? What are the principles that justify their independent existence? The following may be stated briefly:-
(1) Baptists contend for the spirituality of the Church. They hold that the membership of a Christian Church should consist only of those who are believers. This all-important principle is enforced by believer's baptism; but is denied by infant baptism, which is liable to be regarded as a qualification for Church membership.
(2) Baptists believe that baptism is rightly administered only by immersion, and that believers alone should be baptised; Baptists decline to practice infant sprinkling because they affirm that it is nowhere mentioned in Scripture. Besides, it interferes with individual responsibility, and disavows the necessity of personal faith on the part of the subject while it also destroys the symbolical teaching of baptism, frustrates its purpose, and renders unintelligible such important Scriptures as Rom. 6: 3-11, and Col. 2: 10-12.
(3) Baptists do not recognize Creeds and Confessions of Faith as Church institutions. While regarding Declarations of Belief as of historical interest, they acknowledge no authority over the conscience but the Word of God. Their history has been an unremitting struggle for liberty of conscience and an unfettered Bible.
While holding these distinctive Baptist principles, we do most lovingly extend to all such brethren in Christ as may differ with us on the subject of baptism, but nevertheless love our Lord Jesus in sincerity, the right hand of Christian fellowship, and will at all times welcome them to join us round the Lord's Table and to unite with us in the worship and social life of the Church.