An independent church consists of a body of believers that are under the authority of a biblically qualified pastor that is autonomous and locally managed. The pastor of an independent church answers to only one authority, and that is the authority of Jesus Christ and the Word of God.
On the other end of things, denominational churches are united under a centralized and usually small body of individuals that manage their churches from the top down. Sadly, this type of church structure allows the devil easier access to infiltrate churches since he only has to deceive those at the top.
When it comes to independent churches, Satan has a lot more work he has to do in order to subvert the works of God. For instance, let’s say one local church started venturing towards damnable doctrine. Bible-believing congregants would eventually end up leaving and seeking out a new church.
When a church goes in the wrong direction and loses its congregants, it usually ends up going under, and it should. However, denominational organizations offer a level of protection to these churches, allowing them to continue despite their heresies.
Bible Baptist Church of Clementon, NJ is an independent church for a very good reason. We are a body of spirit-filled believers who love the Lord Jesus Christ, and we want to live our lives according to His will while having the freedom to believe the whole Word of God.
Fundamental churches rely on preaching that at times almost seem like a school assignment. Typically a preacher will offer up a group of different scriptures that directly relate to each other and convey the general theme of the sermon.
After the theme is set, more scriptures along with general commentary are used to build the message from the bottom up. Many times a speaker will use a few different scriptures to help people gain a better understanding of a particular word or doctrine.
Fundamental preachers generally have the belief that they must prove their messages through scripture. The unfortunate fact today is, in most churches preachers will only read a couple of verses, then move onto a 35 minute commentary. Congregants don’t challenge or test doctrines, they simply accept what is being preached and place their faith in their pastor instead of measuring what is being spoken against the Word of God.
Those who attend fundamental churches expect a pastor to prove his doctrines. Proving doctrines is one of the many ways a good pastor can plant and water the seeds of faith, which in turn grows into an increase.
When people think of a Baptist church, most usually make the mistake of assuming that all Baptist churches are all part of the Baptist denomination. The actual truth is, an independent fundamental Baptist church is technically a nondenominational church.
Sure, there are Baptist denominations out there including the Southern Baptist Convention and The Northern Baptists, but these organizations have nothing to do with Bible Baptist Church in Clementon, NJ.
The term Baptist is a term that is found in the New Testament, mostly in regards to John the Baptist.
John the Baptist was sent to pave the way for the Lord Jesus Christ:
In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, 2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. 3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
He baptised Jesus himself, in which God the Father spoke from heaven declaring Jesus Christ to be the Son of God, in whom He was well pleased:
Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? 15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him. 16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: 17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
From the beginning John the Baptist had done many wonderful works for the Lord. He loved the Lord Jesus with all of his heart, and dedicated his life to spreading the Gospel.
As Baptists we believe that John the Baptist has set an incredible example for all of us to learn from as believers. It is important to note that Baptist churches do not worship John the Baptist, or any other man.
Generally, Baptist churches have the following main goals:
The question itself exposes a common misconception about Baptist churches. When answering the question whether or not a Baptist church is Catholic or Protestant, the answer is neither!
Many have been led to believe that all churches must fall within only two categories, this is a common misconception. The truth is, Protestant churches are those that were Catholic, with the exception that they disagreed with a handful of doctrines and therefore “protested”.
In protest, these Catholic churches would break away in and simply form what we now know as a denomination. Many don’t realize that when they go to a denominational Christian church, they are basically going to a Catholic church that has been reformed into something else. There are still lingering doctrines and rituals that are in place, bringing a level of similarity and ecumenicalism.
Baptists, on the other hand, reject these so-called authorities that are made with the hands of men and instead rely on the authority of Jesus Christ and the Word of God. Our feet are directed by God himself and our doctrines are based wholly in scripture.