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by the apostles, and the imme, the other denominations do, diate disciples of Christ : for with whom they are united, they are described as repent- and from additional motives ing of their sins, as believing derived from their particular in Christ, and as having gladly tenets respecting baptism. The received the word ; and with- constitution of their churches, out these qualifications, Peter and their modes of worship, acquaints those who were con are congregational, or indeverted by his sermon, that he pendent; in the exercises of could not have admitted them which they are protected, in to baptism. Pbilip holds the common with other dissenters, same language in his discourse by the act of toleration. Bewith the Eunuch; and Paul fore this act they were liable treats Lydia, the jailor, and to pains and penalties, as nonothers, in the same manner. conformists, and often for Without these qualifications, their peculiar sentiments as christians in general think it Baptists. A proclamation was wrong to admit persons to the issued out against them, and Lord's supper; and for the some of them were burnt in same reasons, without these Smithfield in fifteen hundred qualifications, at least a pro- and thirty-eight. i They bore fession of them, the Baptists a considerable share in the think it wrong to admit any persecutions of the seventeenth to baptism,
and preceding centuries, and They farther insist that all as it should seem in those of positive institutions depend some centuries before ; for entirely upon the will and de- there were several among the claration of the institutor; Lollards and Wickliffites who and that therefore reasoning disapproved of infant-baptism. by analogy from previous There were many of this perabrogated rites is to be reject- suasion among the protestants ed, and the express commands and reformers abroad. In: of Christ respecting the mode Holland, Germany, and the and subjects of baptism, ought North, they went by the names to be our only rule.
of Anabaptists, and Mennomtes; The Baptists in England and in Piedmont and the South, form one of the three deno- they were found among the minations of protestant dis- Albigenses and Waldenses.* senters. They separate from To those who make their the establishment for the same history as a denomination to reasons as their brethren of have originated in the turby.
* Rees's Cyclopædia, article Baptists,
lent excesses of Munster, they into a distinct connection, answer, If it were so, it is no called The Nero Association. disgrace to the principle, un- The churches in this union less. it could be proved to keep up a friendly acquaintfavour such excesses; nor to ance, in some outward things, those who hold it, unless they with those from whom they be guilty of the same things : have separated; but in things but they deny that it is so ; more essential disclaim any for that the disturbances in connection with them ; partiquestion did not originate with cularly as to changing ministhe people called anabaptists; ters, and the admission of that those who bore this name members. * practised sprinkling; and that The Baptists in America, antipædobaptism was known and in the East and West-Inmany centuries before they dies, are chiefly Calvinists, and existed.
hold occasional fellowship with The Baptists subsist under the particular baptist churches two denominations ; viz. the in England. Those in Scotland Particular, or Calvinistical; having imbibed a considerable and the General, or Arminian. part of the principles of Messrs. The former is by far the most Glass of Sundeman, bave no numerous. Some of both des communion with the others. nominations allow of mixed When the English Baptists communion with pædobap- engaged in a mission to the tists; others disallow it: and cast, however, they very libesome few of them observe the rally contributed towards it, seventh day of the week as especially to the translating of the sabbath, apprehending the the scriptures in the Bengalee law that enjoined it not to language.+ For an account of have been repealed by Christ them see Rippon's Baptist Reor his apostles.
gister, vol. ii. p. 361.] A considerable number of BARDESANISTES, a dethe General Baptists have gone nomination in the second ceninto Socinianism or Arianism, tury, the followers of Bardeon account of which several sanes, a native of Edessa, and of their ministers and churches a man of a very acute and who disapprove of these prin- penetrating genius. The sum ciples, have within the last of his doctrine was as follows: forty years formed themselves
1. That there is a supreme (* Rippon's Baptist Register, vol. i. p. 172—175. + Gale's Reflections on Wall's History, Stennet's Answer to Addington. Booth's Pædobaptisin Examined, second edition. M'Lean on the Commission.}
God, pure and benevolent, ab- kind to subdue that, body of solutely free from all evil and corruption which they carry imperfection; and there is also about with them in this mora prince of darkness, the foun- tal life; and by abstinence, tain of all evil, disorder, and fasting, and contemplation, to misery.
disengage themselves from the 2. That the supreme God servitude and dominion of that created the world without any malignant matter which chainmixture of evil in its compo- ed down the soul to low and sition: he gave existence also ignoble pursuits. to its inhabitants, who came 5. That those who submit out of his forming hand pure themselves to the discipline of and incorrupt, endued with this divine teacher, shall, after subtle etherial bodies, and the dissolution of this terresspirits of a celestial nature. trial body, mount up to the
3. That when the prince of mansions of felicity, clothed darkness had enticed men to with etherial vehicles, or celessin, then the supreme God tial bodies. permitted them to fall into This denomination was a sluggish and gross bodies, branch of the Gnostics.* See formed of corrupt matter by Gnostics. the evil principle. He per- BARLAAMITES, a denomitted also the depravation mination in the sixteenth cenand disorder which this malig- tury, followers of Barlaam. nant being introduced both He was by birth a Neapolitan, into the natural and moral and monk of the order of St. world, designing by this per- Basil. He maintained that the mission to punish the degene- light which surrounded Christ racy and rebellion of an apos- on Mount Tabor, was neither tate race; and hence proceeds the divine essence, nor flowed the perpetual conflict between from it. reason and passion in the mind BASILIDIANS, a denomi
nation in the second century, 4. That on this account from Basilides, chief of the Jesus descended from the up- Egyptian Gnostics. He acper regions, clothed not with knowledged the existence of à real, but with a celestial and one supreme God, perfect in aërial body, and taught man- goodness and wisdom, who
* Mosheim's Ecclesiastical History, vol. i, p. 179, 180. + Barlaam was opposed by Palamas, archbishop of Thessalonica, who asserted that the light seen upon Tabor was an uncreated light, and co-eterpal with God.
produced from his own sub- of forming a world from that stance seven beings, or aions,* confused mass, and of creatof a most excellent nature. ing an order of beings to peoTwo of these aions, called ple it.f This design was carDynamis and Sophia, (i. e. ried into execution, and was power and wisdom ) engendered approved by the supreme God, the angels of the highest order. whò, to the animal life with These angels formed a hea- which only the inhabitants of ven for their habitation, and this new world were at first brought forth other angelic endowed, added a reasonable beings of a nature somewhat soul, giving at the same time inferior to their own. Many to the angels the empire over other generations of angels them. followed these. New heavens These angelic beings, adwere also created, until the vanced to the government of number of angelic orders, and the world which they had of their respective heavens, created, fell by degrees from amounted to three hundred and their original purity, and soon sixty-five, and thus equalled manifested the fatal marks of the days of the year. All these their depravity and corrupare under the empire of an tion. They not only endeaomnipotent Lord, whom Ba- voured to efface in the minds silides called Abraxas. of men their knowledge of
The inhabitants of the lowest the supreme Being, that they heavens, which touched upon might be worshipped in his the borders of the eternal, stead; but also began to war malignant, and self-animated against each other, with an matter, conceived the design ambitious view toenlarge every one the bounds of his respec- . from the learned and pious tive dominion. The most arro- Mr. Richard Baxter, who was gant and turbulant of all these born in the year sixteen huuangelic spirits, was that which dred and fifteen. His design presided over the jewish na- was to reconcile Calvin and tion. Hence the supreme God, Arminius. For this purpose he beholding with compassion the formed a middle scheme bemiserable state of rational be- tween their systems. He taught ings, who groaned under the that God had elected some, contest of these jarring powers, whom he is determined to save, sent from heaven his son Nus, without any foresight of their or Christ, the chief of the good works; and that others aions, that, joined in a sub- to whom the gospel is preachstantial union with the man ed have common grace, which Jesus, he might restore the if they improve, they shall obknowledge of the supreme God, tain saving grace, according destroy the empire of those to the doctrine of Arminius. angelic natures which presid- This denomination own, with ed over the world, and parti- Calvin, that the merits of cularly that of the arrogant Christ's death are to be applied leader of the jewish people. to believers only; but they The God of the jews, alarm- also assert that all men are in ed at this, sent forth his a state capable of salvation. ministers to seize the man Mr. Baxter maintains that Jesus and put him to death. there may be a certainty of They executed his commands: perseverance here; and yet he but their cruelty could not cannot tell whether a man may extend to Christ, against whom not have so weak a degree of their efforts were vain. Those saving grace as to lose it again. souls who obey the precepts of In order to prove that the the Son of God, shall
* The word aion, from expressing only the duration of beings, was by a metonymy employed to signity the beings themselves. Thus the supreme Being was called aion ; and the angels were distinguished by the title of aions. All this will lead us to the true meaning of that word among the Gnostics. They had formed to themselves the notion of an invisible world, composed of entities, or virtues, proceeding from the supreme Being, and succeeding each other at certain intervals of time, so as to form an eternal chain, of which our world was the terminating link. To the beings which formed this eternal chain, the Gnostics assigned a certain term of duration, and a certain sphere of action. Their terms of duration were at first called aions; and they themselves were afterwards nietonymically distinguished by that tille.
+ Basilides supposed this lower world to have been made by angels, Many embraced this opinion, because they thought it below the supreme Being to meddle with matter, in order to give it form and beauty. "They judged it unworthy of him to make perishing and mortal beings. Above all, they could not endure the supposition that God is the author of the many evils which are in the world,
, after death of Christ has put all in the dissolution of their mortal a state capable of salvation; frame, ascend to the Father, the following arguments are while their bodies return to alleged by this learned author. the corrupt mass of matter 1. It was the nature of all whence they were formed. mankind which Christ assumDisobedient spirits, on the ed at his incarnation, and the contrary, shall pass succes- sins of all mankind were the sively into other bodies. * See occasion of his suffering. Gnostics.
2. It was to Adam, as the BAXTERIANS, so called common father of lapsed man
* Mosheim, vol. i. p. 181, 182, 183. Lardner's Works,