American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A member of an evangelical Protestant church of congregational polity, following the reformed tradition in worship, and believing in individual freedom, in the separation of church and state, and in baptism of voluntary, conscious believers.
- n. One that baptizes.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. One who administers baptism: the title (with a capital letter) of John, the forerunner of Christ.
- n. [capitalized] A member or an adherent of one of those Christian denominations which maintain that baptism can be administered only upon a personal profession of Christian faith. Generally, though not always, Baptists are immersionists. This doctrine has been held from a very early age of the Christian church; but the Baptists as a distinct denomination date from the epoch of the Reformation, and were originally called
Anabaptistsby their opponents. In the United States the Baptists owe their origin to Roger Williams, who was originally a minister of the Church of England. The principal Baptist denominations are the Baptists, sometimes called Calvinist Baptists, from their Calvinistic theology; Freewill Baptists, who are Arminian in theology and open communionists in practice; German Baptists, popularly called Dunkers; General Baptists, a party of English Baptists who are Arminian in theology and hold to a general atonement (opposed to Particular Baptists, who are Calvinistic); Old-School Baptists, sometimes called Anti-Missionor Hard-Shell Baptists, from their extreme Calvinism, which leads them to oppose all active measures for the conversion of the world (a sect numbering 40,000); Seventh-Day Baptists, who keep the seventh day, instead of the first, as the sabbath; Six-Principle Baptists, so called from the six principles which constitute their creed (they practise “laying on of hands,” and refuse communion to all who do not); Disciples of Christ, also called Christians or Campbellites, an American denomination growing out of the labors of Alexander Campbell, and separately organized in 1827; Winebrennerians, or Church of God (organized in 1830 by John Winebrenner), who maintain the washing of feet as an ordinance of perpetual obligation; and Christians, or the Christian Connection, an American sect of Unitarian Baptists founded about 1800. The Baptists are congregational in polity, and generally Calvinistic or semi-Calvinistic in theology. Those of Great Britain do not generally regard baptism by immersion as a prerequisite to communion, and therefore commune with other churches; but the opposite position is, with few exceptions, adopted by the Baptists of the United States. The former are popularly called open-communionists, the latter close-communionists.
- n. A Protestant denomination of Christianity, which believes in the baptism of believers, as opposed to the baptism of infants.
- n. An adherent of this denomination.
- adj. Of, relating to, or adhering to the Baptist religious denomination.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. One who administers baptism; -- specifically applied to John, the forerunner of Christ.
- n. One of a denomination of Christians who deny the validity of infant baptism and of sprinkling, and maintain that baptism should be administered to believers alone, and should be by immersion. See Anabaptist.
- n. follower of Baptistic doctrines
- Middle English, baptizer, from Old French baptiste, from Late Latin baptista, from Greek baptistēs, from baptizein, to baptize; see baptize. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“The Rev.Dr. Bright, at present editor of the Baptist _Examiner_, was at that tune a bookseller of the firm of Bennett & Bright, and publisher of the _Baptist”
“The term Baptist has its origins with the anabaptists of the 16th century.”
“This waning reputation led some SBC congregations to drop the word "Baptist" from their church's name.”
“John the Baptist is the only saint singled out for inclusion in this liturgical manuscript.”
“There was a hand-shaped reliquary containing an arm-bone (of St. John the Baptist?), which pointed at the sky just like John the Baptist is always shown doing.”
“St. John the Baptist is the saint of adulthood, of maturity.”
“I can remember summer nights when we'd put down what we called a Baptist pallet and we listened to the grown-ups talk.”
“So what is more problematic for the SBC - the word "Baptist" or the word "Southern"?”
“The word "Baptist" isn't seen as a friendly one in many places, he said, and the new name makes it easier for the denomination to work overseas and in more secular parts of the”
“Wright wouldn't say whether new names have been proposed for the denomination of 16 million, but he has said the word "Baptist" would remain.”
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Words in the Bible evoking biblical stories or with special spiritual meaning. Proper names have been reduced to the minimum.
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