Archive for the ‘Book Reviews’ category

Believer’s Baptism and the Campbellite Heresy

August 8, 2008

This summer, one of the books I have read while not in class was Believer’s Baptism, edited by Thomas R. Schreiner and Shawn D. Wright. This book is an excellent resource for a defense of biblical baptism against attacks from the best arguments offered by paedo-baptist sources, as found in works by John Calvin, John Murray, Pierre Marcel, Meredith Kline and in the book The Case for Covenantal Infant Baptism, edited by Gregg Strawbridge. Believer’s Baptism also contains some pastoral wisdom from Mark Dever in regards to the practice of baptism in the local church.

The usefulness of this book is severely compromised, however, by a single chapter. When I saw that there was a chapter in the book titled “Baptism in the Stone-Campbell Restoration Movement,” I fully expected this chapter to warn baptists not emphasize believers’ baptism to the point that in guarding against paedo-baptism, we would fall into the opposite error of Campbellitism. And I was happy at the prospect of reading such a chapter, because here in Louisville there is a large number of Campbell’s theological descendants, especially in the “Christian Church.” Rather than an apologetic defense against Campbellitism, the author of this chapter, A.B. Caneday, asserts that “if one perseveres in reading [Alexander Campbell’s] works with care, one discovers that Campbell, particularly on baptism, has been unfairly treated to this day” (304) and furthermore:

American Evangelicalism’s exclusion of Christians and of churches from the Stone-Campbell tradition has injured both traditions. With this in view, the rapprochement of many within the Stone-Campbell tradition and of evangelicals… is worthy of commendation. (304)

But is Caneday correct? Should evangelicals (and, in this format, I would especially like to add, should Baptists) seek rapprochement with those in the Campbellite tradition [found in denominations such as the Christian Church and the Churches of Christ]? Should we not instead follow the example set by historic Baptist associations (299-300) and seek to distance ourselves from fellowship with the Campbellites, based on New Testament passages such as Galatians 1:6-9 and 2 John 10-11? (more…)


This Joyful Eastertide

August 17, 2006

From Steve Hays at Triablogue:

Last year, Prometheus Books published The Empty Tomb: Jesus Beyond the Grave. Sympathetic reviewers consider this missive to be the definitive refutation of the Resurrection.

Needless to say, I’m of a slightly different opinion. If you follow this link, it will take you to an extensive review which I’ve written of the title in question.

In addition to my modest contribution, Gene Bridges and Jason Engwer, my able cobelligerents at T-blog, have contribtued an excursus which is, alone, worth the price of the book–especially when you consider that the review (in ebook format) is free for the taking!

Steve Hays


James White Reviews The Trouble With Tulip

August 14, 2006

See here.

This is a series of lectures at PRBC.


Book Alert

July 31, 2006

HT: Scripture Searcher

I am pleased to announce the opportunity to offer books from Mercer University Press here at Backus Books. The first of these titles is Anthony Chute’s A Piety Above the Common Standard: Jesse Mercer and Evangelistic Calvinism.

Jesse Mercer (1769–1841) was a Baptist pastor, editor, and denominational statesman who figured prominently in the debates over Calvinism among Southern clergymen. Most studies of Calvinism in America have focused on Jonathan Edwards, the New Divinity Movement, and the Princeton theologians. Calvinism, however, played a key role in shaping the religious mind of the South, particularly among Baptists who debated the relationship between divine sovereignty and human responsibility as it related to missions, education, and social reform. These debates led to the formation of two Baptist groups, Primitive and Missionary, the latter of which ultimately became Southern Baptists.

This book explores the role of Jesse Mercer within these debates as he promoted the first form of the Georgia Baptist Convention. His Calvinistic theology governed his actions and life. He emphasized missions, theological training for pastors, and cooperation between churches in fulfilling the Great Commission.

Calvinism is as important a topic today in the study of religion as it ever has been. This book gives perspective and history to current trends and understandings.

Anthony L. Chute received his Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He is assistant professor of church history at California Baptist University, Riverside, California.

This book lists for $25 and I am offering it as a featured book for $18 plus postage. This is a $2 savings over the regular inventory price of $20. As always, you may order online ( through PayPal, by US Mail to Backus Books, Box 17274, Rochester, NY 14617. Or, you may order by phone at 585-785-7341. This is an excellent book introducing you to the theology and ministry of an early American Baptist.

Don Moffitt

Backus Books

Book Review: The Trouble With TULIP

June 19, 2006

Jeff Riddle, pastor of the good Jefferson Park Baptist Church in Charlottesville, VA, has been very kind to allow us to print his book review of the new SBC President’s book. Let me preface this by saying that this is in no way an attack on Frank Page. I think he will make a very fine SBC President. However, I did see that his book has been put back into print now (for obvious reasons), and many copies were on display at the Lifeway exhibition @ the Convention last week. Since we’re probably going to be hearing more about this book, consider this a preemptive review. I’m sure that, if our friends at Baptist Fire were still with us, they would be promoting this book anyway.

Frank S. Page’s Trouble With The TULIP: An Extended Review and Response

Frank S. Page. Trouble With The TULIP: A Closer Examination of the Five Points of Calvinism. Canton, Ga.: Riverstone Publishing Group, 2000: 80 pp.

Frank Page wrote this booklet while serving as Pastor of Warren Baptist Church in Augusta, Georgia. He now serves as Pastor of Taylors First Baptist Church in Taylors, South Carolina and will stand as a candidate for President of the Southern Baptist Convention in 2006. Page holds a doctor of Philosophy degree in Christian Ethics from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.

The aim of this booklet is to express opposition to the theological system known as five point Calvinism, often referred to by the acronym TULIP (Total Depravity – Unconditional Election – Limited Atonement – Irresistible Grace – Perseverance of the Saints). Though Page’s tone is more irenic than some who have opposed the doctrines of grace in recent years, it is still plagued by many of the same maladies that seem to inflict those who decide they are “against” Calvinism. We will first present a summary of the booklet’s content and then offer a chapter by chapter response.