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Baptist Theology
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Baptist Theology


T&T Clark 2012

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This book considers the distinctive ideas and expressions of Christian faith found in the historic Baptist churches. An outline of the history of the Baptist movement is offered, from its British beginnings in Amsterdam in 1609, through its varied developments in Britain, Europe, and North America, to its worldwide presence and diversity today, and its relationship to many other churches with apparently-similar practices (e.g. Pentecostal and “new” churches). Holmes draws the various threads together, noting the real diversities in the history of Baptist theology, but suggesting that in a vision of the present and urgent Lordship of Christ experienced in the local congregation, there is a thread that links most of these distinctives.

The Logos Bible Software edition of this volume streamlines and enhances your study. Scripture passages link directly to your English translations and original-language texts, and important theological concepts link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches by topic to find what other authors, scholars, and theologians have to say.

Key Features

  • Presents an overview and examination of Baptist theology
  • Simplified explanation of technical concepts
  • Syntheses of diverse theological perspectives from experts in the field


  • Baptist Beginnings
  • Baptists in North America
  • Baptists Beyond North America in the Modern Period
  • Baptist Perspectives on Ecumenical Theology
  • The Baptist Vision of the Church
  • Christ is Lord, and the Believer is Free
  • Making Disciples: Mission and Holiness

Praise for the Print Edition

In exploring the Baptist tradition, Stephen Holmes offers an astonishing range of material packed into a relatively small space. He clarifies the difficult balance between individuality and life in community that Baptists have tried to maintain, and with an exceptional ease he integrates history with theology, offering many insightful theological judgments as he tells the story. In a masterful way, he sets the development of a particular group within the wider movements of church, society, and Christian thought, in a tour de force that should be read by all students of the Christian Church.

—Paul S. Fiddes, professor of Systematic theology, Regent’s Park College, Oxford

Do Baptists have a theology? The answer, as this book clearly shows, is ‘Yes.’ But what sort of theology is it? Is it a version of Protestant evangelicalism, democratic individualism, or radical sectarianism? Holmes offers an account of Baptist theology as an activity that attends closely to the convictions and practices of congregations. This explains why expressions of Baptist theology often vary significantly. Yet in the particular attention to local gatherings, Holmes displays that Baptists still share the theological consensus of the wider church on such basic doctrines as the Trinity, the person and work of Christ, and creation. But as Holmes also makes plain, this emphasis on the gathered community finds distinctive manifestation in congregational church government, respect for the liberty of conscience, and participation in God’s mission to the world. It is a clear and concise summary of Baptist theology that deserves to be widely used.

Curtis W. Freeman, research professor of theology, Duke University Divinity School

Product Details

About Stephen R. Holmes

Stephen Holmes is lecturer in theology at The University of St Andrews. He has published several volumes in the field of Christian theology and has previously collaborated with Colin Gunton in The Practice of Theology.

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